Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Nina's Sketch challenge

I actually attempted two challenges last night, though I'm not sure how well I did with this one. Nina posted a sketch to follow here.

The card actually opens at the half-way mark, so the birds are all on the top flap, and the papers below are pasted to the "inside".

Pink & Green Island Paperie Challenge

After suffering through a miserable post-christmas flu, I finally felt up to a challenge last night - but only the type involving ink and paper, no heavy lifting.

To celebrate their new online opening, the Maui-based scrapbook store Island Paperie is hosting a challenge to create any paper-based project drawing inspiration from this pink and green hibiscus paper from their signature line.

I grew up in Hawaii, so of course I had to make an attempt (plus who doesn't want to win $25 in paper supplies?). I don't currently own any Island Paperie products, so I used my own mix of papers gussied up with cuttlebug embossments.

Stamps used: Leaves from the DoodleFactory Birds N Fish set
Moki, the hula-dancing monkey from the DoodleFactory Tropics set.

If you'd like to participate, find all the rules [HERE]

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Brown Paper Packages Tied Up With String

Christmas is over, but I didn't get to post my gifts (to others) before the Big Day. Our friend Alan came over last week and willingly agreed to stamp and color an army of Sneeqs, which eventually became my gift tags.

Mike and I celebrated Christmas Eve and Day with his family, where there is always a guaranteed excess of food, laughter and joy. I don't have to go back to work until January 5th, so I'm using my free time wisely by sleeping in, attending and having more friend&family gatherings, and in a few days we'll be heading up north to celebrate New Year's in Yosemite. Hope your holidays were merry and bright!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Seeing Double...or Quadruple

Here are the fates states of the rest of those Santas (and Frostys)

First up is a card I made for the Starving ArtistStamps Clear Card Challenge. All of these cards have been bundled into envelopes and have traveled through my office building, or are en route to various destinations around the country.

Hah, I didn't realize until now that I pretty much did the exact same positioning and layout in every single card. So much for individuality! I guess its easier to stick to a formula when "mass" producing.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Christmas is in 4 Days!?!

Just dropping by for a quick post before I head back to the assembly-line. I finally finished drawing the next DoodleFactory set yesterday which means I had time to settle into some Christmas card making.

Ever since I saw Leigh O'Brien's non-traditional santa card, I knew I had to make a differently-colored santa of my own.

Mike will kill me when he realizes I posted this photo of him. You can't even see his face, but he's worried he might get kicked out of the fine-arts world if he's caught coloring cartoons, or something. But who can resist this fun, plus he's a much better shader than I am, anyway. That mess on the table is all me, though. Thanks to Tracey, I now have a million new craft supplies and gadgets which all seem to explode all over the place when I'm working. Are you people very tidy when you're making stuff, because I need some help in that area. I should probably start by working at an actual desk instead of the coffee table, but I can't help myself.

Anyway, here's my first card from the batch. I have several more to go, so I better get back to work. Santa of course is from the Sweet Shoppe set. Dee sent me the ribbon, and overall, I'd say my influence is heavily drawn from my card-making hero, Nina.

Thursday, December 04, 2008

The Giving Season

I'm not one of those people who ever finishes their Christmas shopping early. Every year I vow to get better, but it only seems to get worse. I really enjoy blogs that offer gift guides because it means someone else has done the homework and I get to window shop in one convenient place. So far I've done more browsing than buying.

With all the economic hardships, I think a lot of people are scaling back and taking stock of what this season is supposed to mean. There's a movement to Redefine Christmas and push the idea of charitable giving.

My friend Max teaches 5th Grade students in the LA School District. Max is growing a mustache for 30 days in an effort to win donor support for several of his colleage's classroom projects. Donorschoose.org is actually a nifty organization. The site allows teachers to propose projects that YOU and others can bring to fruition with tax-deductable donations. I put some money into a couple of projects on Max's page, then quickly found myself searching around for more. What they say about giving feeling good is true! Plus, if you give $100 or whatever amount is needed to complete the funding on a project, you'll get thank you letters and photos from the classroom you helped!

Last year the Buy Handmade movement was all the rage (in the blogosphere anyway). Etsy.com seems to have come a long way since its inception. I love that site, but I often get lost wading through the choices. The one shop I never have to question belongs to Lorigami, one of my oldest internet friends. I've bought several pieces from her throughout the years and she continues to create the most lovely and magical things. Her eco-friendly, handmade items remind me of anthropologie, but at a fraction of the price.

I'll end this post with a more commercial item because I received a coupon in the mail and while I'm not purchasing any this year, some of you might find it useful. I bought my friend a gift set from Full Bloom Tea several years ago and she absolutely loved the way the flowering teas unfurled their magic in the glass teapot. The items came in attractive brown and green boxes and when I tried some myself a few years later, it wasn't only delightful to watch, but the tea tasted quite nice as well. If you'd like to get free priority shipping on flowering tea, just use this code in your check out (until Dec 6): free08. It's really a great gift for anyone who enjoys science experiments or a nice cup of tea.