Drunken Stampers LAST Challenge :(

Drunken Stampers LAST Challenge :(

I’m so sad that this is the last challenge of this series on the Drunken Stampers’ blog!!!  I did the last one (combo of “Monty Python and the Holy Grail” with a rabbit) and it was some of the most fun I’ve had in a while. This week’s challenge is “Edward Scissorhands” (another awesome movie) and sewing. What a perfect combination!

Here’s the link to this week’s challenge:


And there’s my submission. I immediately thought “topiary” and happened to have some green felt that I just got from a magic “miscellaneous” bag from a local thrift store. I love those things. I used a stamp to make some grass at the bottom and then cut the felt into a scissors and a heart. I wanted to get the love-story element of “Edward Scissorhands”. I found this perfect quote from the movie on-line (I wish I could say that I remembered it, but I didn’t). I glued the felt first and then sewed it on. Then I machine stitched the sky with some shimmery metallic thread. I had a scrap of that fluffy stuff they put in a jewelry box for padding that I glued on with Mod Podge (it didn’t show up in the photo very well).  (I also have to remember that Mod Podge  makes ink from regular stamp pads run.)  Then I dabbed on some watercolors for the sky. Oh, yeah, and I sewed on a piece of the grass they put in take-out sushi boxes to keep the rolls apart. I LOVE that stuff!!!


I think I’m going to apply to be on the Drunken Stampers next team. It would be my first time every trying to do something like that, but you can’t win if you don’t play. Wish me luck!

Mandala Monday

I’m working late today but I’ve been thinking about how to get my Mandala and my ICAD both in. The potpourri basket in the bathroom at work was spilled, so I grabbed the rest (not the stuff on the bathroom floor) and made this quickie. I used Instagram again, for the square shape, and put a neat filter on that made the center sharp and the edges blurred. That’s how I feel sometimes (all blurred around the edges).

Update:  Now that I’m on my computer, I have to add a link to another favorite Mandala Monday that has a GIVE-AWAY this week:

http://girlunwinding.wordpress.com/2013/06/09/give-away-time/  – I love all the things Dawn posts, but especially the mandalas.

Chair Planter

I was tag saling and came across this beautiful distressed green chair with no seat. It was practically screaming at me to plant flowers in it… so I bought it for $3. The paint was already perfect so I just decoupaged on some flowers I cut out from a cool piece of tissue paper I had laying around.

After I sprayed the heck out of it with clear matte sealant (about 10 coats), I made a kind of basket out of chicken wire and put it in the hole where the seat would have been. Using gloves would have been smart at this point, because my hands were not happy with me after that. I stapled it in with a ton of staples and then lined it with garden fabric, also stapled in. Then I filled it with dirt and plopped in the flowers. I used white petunias and vinca vine, thinking they would fill it out and overflow quite nicely. The vines were my wife’s idea. Some mulch to top it off and voila!

It’s found a nice home under my peach tree.

Here are some examples of planter chairs I found on WordPress and from some that I’ve pinned on Pinterest (my go-to page for anything I want to remember):

http://flowersavvydesigntips.wordpress.com/2010/05/10/an-old-chair-takes-front-seat-in-the-garden-when-it-becomes-a-planter-by-sharon-mcgukin/  – Nicely executed and with directions.

http://laceandlures.blogspot.com/2009/03/my-little-flower-garden.html  – My DREAM garden look.  So much color, so much upcycling, and a birdhouse!

http://www.cre8tivedesignsinc.com/2010/05/chair-planter/  – I LOVE how she threw a bunch of random “objects” in to this one.  A flea market extravaganza all in one little garden display.

UPDATE:  I was posted as a “guest blogger” on 30 Days/30 Things- a really cool blog by folks who challenged themselves to create 30 things using upcycled items for 30 days.  They did it and then decided to continue posting ideas from other people until they ran out of ideas.  That was 817 days ago!  How cool is that?!?!  Here’s their site- so many AMAZING ideas!



A lesson in mistakes


I made this ICAD to continue my “quote collection”. It was a lesson in mistakes, but I tend to like those projects the best. I was thinking of the wallpaper theme when I decoupaged scrapbook paper columns on first, putting a few rips in the seams, and then making it a little distressed looking with some gesso smudges over the top. Then, I stamped this cool Recollections stamp with illegible writing on it a few times (the card was bigger than the stamp). This was my first mistake: I don’t have many different colors of ink pads, so I often use bingo markers or magic markers instead to ink up my stamp. This time I grabbed my son’s washable markers, and realized later that they do, indeed, wash off. More on that later…


Anyhow… I had actually made the background for this card before choosing the quote. So, I went to my handy dandy iPhone app where I store some of the quotes I like and found one that was short enough to do with stamped letters. “I shut my eyes in order to see.” I went to work stamping with what looked like a gold stamp pad (second and third mistakes). It wasn’t exactly gold… More of a yellow that barely showed up. But I figured I could go over it with a Sharpie. Also, I hadn’t exactly cleaned the letter stamps the last time I used them so some had green left over, which ended up on this card. Oh well… I kept at it. I then went over the stamps with black Sharpie and wrote the name of the person who the quote was attributed to on the bottom. (Fourth mistake)


Okay… So I usually do look up the people whose quotes I like before use them to see who they are (so I’m not inadvertently using something by someone like Hitler or Pol Pot). I did not look up this name before I put it on the card. After I put it on the card, however, I googled the name, Paul Gatesuguin, and was puzzled to only come up with some Flickr and Tumbler and Facebook references. Hmmm…. So I googled the quote and saw that it was actually the artist Paul Gauguin. I guess the Tumbler and Flickr folks were using the same quote app I was and all butchered his name! So, I ripped off a leftover piece of the seed envelope from my last ICAD and wrote the real name. This is where mistake #1 comes back. I decoupaged it on but the glue “washed off” the washable marker I used in the stamp. Oh well!

I love it, anyway. Thanks for looking! 🙂

Mandala Monday


This was so fun! I finally “harvested” my flower press and needed to fill it up again. I’ve seen other bloggers do Mandala Mondays so I wanted to try it out. I picked some of my favorite flowers from my garden (and one from my neighbor’s bush that leans over my fence) and went to work. I used a sleeve from an LP for the surface so I could keep it square (and because I like the aged paper look). I took the photo with Instagram to also keep it square and I used one of their filters. (I can’t remember which.)

I have no idea what any of the flowers are called (except the maroon carnation in the middle- it was a Mother’s Day gift from my boy). I tend to just buy flowers at farmers’ markets, garden shops, and Home Depot (when I’m broke). I don’t really pay attention to what they’re called, just how the look and how big they’re expected to grow.

All in all, the project was a really fun, relaxing project. I loved the smells and feel of the petals and leaves. I didn’t love the little red bugs but they don’t eat much. After I took the picture, I deconstructed all the flowers and put them in my press.


Update:  Ahhh… It’s so much easier blogging from my computer.  I like using my phone (mostly because I’m impatient) but I can do so much more with my laptop.  So, here are my “inspirations” for this post:

http://bitze.wordpress.com/2013/05/06/mandala-monday-moment-to-moment/  – Patty’s blog is the first place I saw “Mandala Mondays” and is also one of my favorite blogs.  Looking at her mandalas, and the ways she photographs them, just take me to another plain.  The one in this post is one of my favorites.

http://girlunwinding.wordpress.com/category/mandala-monday/  – It looks like this is where Patty got the idea from.  This blog is also absolutely beautiful.

ICAD Day 2- The Rainbow Connection

Here’s my contribution for Day 2 of Daisy Yellow‘s Index-Card-A-Day Challenge. Some of the suggestions for prompts were rainbow colors, paisley, and Candy Land. I put all 3 together in this, even though I would have never thought to do so otherwise. (I guess that’s kind of the fun of the challenge!)

I decoupaged 4 Candy Land cards into kind of a rainbow shape and decoupaged cut paper with my quote on top. It’s from “The Rainbow Connection” song, one of my favorites. Then I drew paisley kinds of shapes around it with thin Sharpies. I’m more of a broad-strokes kind of drawer, to is was interesting for me to do all the detail in these. Some I like, some not so much… But it was an experiment. I do like all the colors and the shapes in this, even if the elements are pretty disparate.

I’ll add some of my other favorites from today when I’m not posting from my phone.

Thanks for looking!



As promised, here are some other resources for amazing ICAD images/artists:

WordPress, unfortunately, doesn’t seem to have many other bloggers posting about the ICAD Challenge so far this year (that I can find).  So, I’ve been spending tons of time on Daisy Yellow’s Facebook page dedicated to ICAD (https://www.facebook.com/groups/daisy.yellow.ICAD/?hc_location=stream) and I just found the Flickr group (http://www.flickr.com/groups/daisyyellow/)  So many talented people!

http://trashbubblesandlifeslittlebits.wordpress.com/2013/06/04/on-my-desk-mobile-desk/  – This blogger seems to be trying out the ICAD Challenge this year and has what looks like some really neat backgrounds for ICAD pieces.  And I love the trash (literally) to treasure theme to her blog.

Painted Flower Pots

My son painted flower pots for his other mom for Valentine’s Day and then we used them to start plants for our garden. The top picture was one I sprayed with chalkboard paint (I love that stuff) and then he drew and wrote on it. Unfortunately, when I sprayed it with sealant (so the chalk didn’t smudge or run if it got wet) the wetness of the sealant destroyed most of the chalk design. (Whoops!)

The middle picture is of a couple he painted with a flower motif with foam brushes and acrylic paint. I love that, too. It’s cheap, easy clean-up, and it comes in a million colors. I sprayed them with glossy sealant and they turned out great!

We planted several herbs from seeds and have been trying to start new plants from scraps. We’ve been doing well with the green and yellow onion. We tried celery, which grew great in water but when we put it in dirt it withered and died. We’re trying some romaine “butts” now. In the water they’re growing like weeds. (Fingers crossed.) To start the seeds, we used Keurig coffee pods so they wouldn’t get lost in the big pot. I’ll let you know how they transplant!

20130328-002455.jpgUPDATE:  The Keurig pod seed starters did not work out.  😦  Apparently, there’s some kind of mesh, build-in filter that the roots got all tangled up in.  And, I think I used too much coffee grounds mixed in with my potting soil on a few of the plants.  Oh well.  I guess I’ll need to find something else to use these for.

“Treasure Rocks” for Easter

My mom has some Australian friends who e-mailed her a cool alternative to Easter eggs which I’m trying out for our annual “hunt” this year. I used baking soda, cocoa powder (for color) and water to make a play-dough like substance and then hid “treasures” inside them, forming a rock shape. This, I’m told, will dry to be relatively hard and I’ll then hide the “rocks” amongst real rocks in my parents’ patio. The cool things is that when vinegar is added (either dripped on slowly or through immersing the “rock” in a bowl of it) the baking soda concoction will fizz up and dissolve, leaving just the treasure behind.

I’ve tried a few with red sprinkles to give them a pinkish hue and a bunch with silver and gold glitter (I like those the best). Inside, I hid quarters and tarnished pennies (so we can watch as the vinegar shines them up), little plastic dinosaur toys, and a couple of rubber Dora bracelets (she’s my niece’s favorite).

I can’t wait for the kiddos to find them and then go through the process of uncovering the treasures inside! What a great tie in to the Easter story (and a little science experiment to go along with it).


Update:  The “rock hunt” was a huge success!  They actually blended in amazingly well with the rocks on my parents’ patio and were somewhat difficult to find, but that made it all the more fun.

Treasure Rocks

We had done a test run with the boy and realized that the dripping vinegar slowly on the rocks would take until next Easter to dissolve them so we went for the full immersion/volcano effect.  They loved it.  We had to help them along by squeezing them a bit to crack them open but once they saw that there was stuff inside, they were even more eager to get in there and help out.

Cracking the Rock

The best parts about it:  it did not result in any extra Easter candy, we made it into a little science lesson (about acids and bases), and no plastic eggs were harmed in the making of this adventure.

If you’re interested in trying these with your kids, but don’t have the time or inclination to make them yourself, I’m also selling some in my Etsy store.  I’m happy to customize them with whatever kind of toys or coins you’d like!    https://www.etsy.com/listing/129853106/treasure-rocks

If you want a little more specific instruction, I wrote up the “recipe” last time I made them (for Vacation Bible Camp):

32 oz. baking soda

1 oz. baking cocoa (for color) (A little goes a long way and too much will make them look like poop- literally.)

approx. 1 cup water


glitter (optional but highly encouraged)

Directions:  Mix the dry ingredients together.  Add about 3/4 of the water and then try mushing it around with your hands.  You want it to be moldable and stick together well, but not so wet that it doesn’t keep its shape while drying.  Add more water or baking soda if needed.  Make rock-shapes and then stick whatever small object you want to hide inside, mushing the dough around the object.  Let dry overnight before dissolving them in vinegar.  (I tried using a drying rack at first, but then realized that my “rocks” were getting a waffle pattern on the side that was resting on the rack.  I put newspaper under them and they dried just fine.)