Saturday, December 16, 2017

Starry Tree Filled Night


For today's entry, I'm sharing a page I created for Try it on Tuesday.  Their theme this fortnight is Twinkle, Twinkle and they explain it can be anything with:
Stars / Sparkles / Glitter/ Shiny things
Some of you may remember the washi tape I purchased at JoAnn's on Small Business Saturday.  What I didn't tell you was I knew what I would use these glittery tapes for when I purchased them.  I had a plan all along to make some shiny trees with these gold stars sent to me last year by my friend Valerie.

I got out my Stickles pearl paint and my Stickles ice, which is very sparkly, too.  Neither wanted to come out of their little bottles with the tiny holes, so I had to remove them using a bamboo skewer.  Not the best choice, but the only one I had.  I tried using a toothpick and that took far too long, so I quickly looked for something a bit larger.

What I didn't realize at the time was how much the Twinkling H2Os were going to bleed into the Stickles.

I used both a white Gelly pen and the Stickles pearl on the star in the sky.

I used my gold Sakura metallic Gelly Roll pen to create the tree trunks.  Since the trees were definitely intended to be Christmas trees, I also sharing them with Moo-Mania & More.

And because I feel like this is cause for celebration, I'm also joining Sheila at Orange Esmeralda, our wonderful host this month at Art Journal Journey with her theme Let's Celebrate.   This spread was created in my Challenges altered book.

I'm simply thrilled you have joined me today as I created art for Art Journal Journey, Moo-Mania & More, and especially Try it on Tuesday.   Maybe I'll see you at each of these places, too.

Friday, December 15, 2017

Friday Smiles 250


By now, many of you know I have a ton of photos from the History Museum I visited for Smithsonian Day.  I thought I would share a few more of these photos each Friday for awhile.  However, this will be my last Friday Smiles until after the new year.  My calendar has gotten so full, I must spend more time completing my Christmas gifts, some of which I still haven't started.  However, I will be back after the first of the year with more funnies, quotes, etc.

Since it's nearly Christmas, I'll share a few Christmas jokes, then you can see and enjoy the photos of the museum. By now you know I'm here for Annie's Friday Smiles.  Don't boo me out of the building, please.  I'm just typing what I found when I cleaned my office.

What do sheep say at Christmas?
Wool-tide Bleatings! or A Merry Christmas to Ewe!

What's the name of the one horse in "Jingle Bells"?
Bob. (Bells on Bob's tail ring!)



Children: This turkey tastes like an old sofa!
Mom: Well, you asked for something with plenty of stuffing!

What happened to the man who stole an Advent Calendar?
He got 25 days!

What did the beaver say to the Christmas Tree?
Nice gnawing you!

Why are Christmas Trees like bad knitters?  
They keep loosing their needles!

What did Adam say on the day before Christmas?
It's Christmas, Eve!

How does Christmas Day end?
With the letter 'Y'!

How does Good King Wenceslas like his pizzas?
One that's deep pan, crisp, and even!

Who hides in the bakery at Christmas?
A mince spy!

and FINALLY:

What's worse than Rudolph with a runny nose?
Frosty the snowman with a hot flash!


I'll now share the last of the photos from one of my favorite rooms in the museum.  Even though it is indicative of times gone by in Wichita, KS, I suspect this will bring back memories of days gone by for many of you today.

You may remember

this is where we left off last time.

Continuing in this room, I'll let you read the minutia at your speed and convenience.



This room really loves Robert Louis Stevenson.


The closer I got, the worse the lighting.

OK, I admit I got a little carried away here.  I had a hard time getting this beauty because of the three mirrors surrounding the carousel horse that reflected everywhere I stood.



I just LOVE some of those old and vintage items, like the radio and lamp.


Little boys and their toys!

Baby carriages and chests were next.


I'm amazed.  i have one of these carriages, but mine has isinglass windows on both sides.

These are the famous Beachy dolls given to the museum by Mrs. Cyrus Beachy.  She had quite a collection.



It's now time to say good-bye to the children's room and head to

my next favorite room in this museum.  I'll start in this room once I've joined you again in January.

Let's now head to Annie's Friday Smiles at A Stitch in Time because it never hurts to start the weekend with a smile.  And thanks beyond belief for joining me today.

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Second Thursday Tutorial: Paintstiks


Today we are playing with Paintstiks.

I have accumulated a few supplies beginning at the far back, then clockwise:

Hand dyed fabric (old bed sheet dyed with black beans)
Potato peeler
Rubber stamp, your choice (mine was deeply etched, purchased at River City Rubber)
Painter's tape
Paintstiks in container
Raised items to be used for rubbings (your choice)
Stencils (your choice)

With the lid off the container, you can see the Paintstiks.

These Paintstiks were purchased on the internet.  My artist friend Kathy purchased two sets and I paid her for my share.

In the U.S. these are known as Shiva brand, while in Europe and parts of the U.S. they are known as Markal brand.   They are real oil paint in solid stick form.  Kathy got more colors than I got, but it was only fair, since she was the one who ordered them because I don't order anything on the internet.

The first thing you have to decide is what Paintstik(s) you want to use.  Then I suggest you decide if you want to use stencils or not.  If you are talented like some of my artist friends, you might want to draw something freehand.  Me? I need all the help I can get.

One thing you need to know is the Paintstik dries after about an hour of non-use and forms a hard skin over the top.  This skin must be removed before you can use the product.  The last time I tried to cut the skin using a craft knife.  I'm so afraid of those things and lost nearly ALL the top round part (see rounded part as they come in package).  So this time I tried to use a paper towel as suggested by the site that sells them.  When that didn't work, I tried using the hand dyed fabric.  That didn't work, either.  Not wanting to get out my X-acto knife again, I decided to see if I could shave the skin.   YES!!

Next, I laid down some paint on my really ugly craft mat and used my stencil brush to pick up the paint.

I also shaved the gray, another Paintstik I botched with my X-acto the first time I used them.  You can tell when the skin has been removed, as you can see here.

Here I've used a stencil to create lines on this piece I am making for a friend.

I did the same using the gray with a different stencil.  I blended the first two colors together, but wasn't sure I liked how they turned out, so used my hand dyed fabric to remove any final bits of Paintstik from the stencil brush before going to the next color.  These paints are SO expensive, even a tiny amount should be used and not wasted.

Here are the results of the four book covers I stenciled.  I plan to turn these into gifts.  Be careful to keep the excess paint bits off the surface of the substrate, though.  Instead of blowing the excess paint away, I rubbed it as seen in the top left book cover.

Now it was time to see if I got good results from rubbings.  Apparently, this is what they are most used for.

For this, I needed to tape the card stock to the piece I would be rubbing.

What a disaster.  This was NOT working well at all.

Would the deeply etched rubber stamp

work any better?


You can't even tell what it is.  So that part of my experiment has failed.

Although I was quite pleased with the stenciling, the rubbing was not successful at all.  However, I remembered to place the potato peeler in the container with the Paintstiks so it would be handy and not get mixed up with my other peeler in the kitchen.  I wouldn't want anyone to ever accidentally use it to peel food ever again.

To make these permanent, you must wait at least 24 hours, then iron the Paintstik under your craft sheet or parchment paper.

What I learned and what I inferred.

1.  Use a potato peeler to remover the Paintstik skin if you are not skilled with an X-acto knife.  NEVER use the potato peeler to peel anything food related again.

2.  Removing the paint from stencils was as easy as wiping it away.  It was so easy, I thought I was dreaming.  I used my hand dyed fabric to wipe and remove the excess paint from both stencils.

3.  I believe the reason the rubbings weren't successful was because the surface of the paints weren't flat, but were concave (dipped inward) and didn't provide good coverage.

4.  After awhile, instead of placing the paint on my craft mat, I simply dipped my stencil brush into the paint and rotated the brush to achieve good coverage.  That made the paints concave and didn't allow adequate coverage for the rubbings.

5.  Don't forget you must wait a minimum of 24 hours, then iron the product under parchment paper or your craft sheet to permanently set the paint.  In fact, the longer you allow this paint to dry, the more vivid it will be.  After that, especially if you are painting on fabric, which should be ironed on both sides, it can be washed in your washing machine.  It is also fade resistant.

I sincerely hope you learned a bit about these Paintstiks today.  If you have them and use them, please let me know in your comments.

Once this has gone live, you'll be able to find this post on my Tutorials page.  Thanks for joining me today.  I really appreciate it.  If you would like me to continue these monthly tutorials in 2018, please let me know in comments.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Wednesday wonders: Christmas trees


As I'm sure everyone knows by now, I love Christmas trees.  All mine are tabletop, though.  So today I'm sharing some I found on Pexels, that wonderful site where you can search for just about anything you desire and save it to your computer.


























These Wednesday wonders were inspired by my blog after I shared my table top trees this year.  And this was too cute not to share.

Thanks  for joining me today.  You never know when your blog might be the inspiration that influences the next Wednesday wonders.