healing haven

August 12, 2014

Gelli Plate – inexpensive and homemade

I’ve looked into purchasing a gelli plate because I loved the look of what could be done with them, but I found they were too expensive.  So I wandered through Hobby Lobby just looking, not for a gelli plate, but for something that could function as a gelli plate with the same properties.  I came across craft foam in sheets with adhesive backings in the children’s section.

8-8 DLP gelli plate craft foam
Adhering two of the 6 x 9 sheets together added some thickness and give to a solid surface.  I’ve used mine over and over, washing it out in between, and keep getting great results.  It may soak up a little more acrylic paint than the regular and you can see that some of the paint remains on the sheets even after washing, but it still works great.  The price difference is worth it.

Here are some of the many backgrounds I’ve made with my inexpensive homemade gelli plate, the left side one used for a post honoring my mother, the right used as a base for a Document Life Project prompt, with the middle one still to be used

gelli backgrounds-Stitched-02

Here, the left shows 3 gelli plate with stenciling pages ready for journaling/planner for a Document Life Project set of pages and the right ready for use.

gelli papers-Stitched-03

(And I still have four more sheets in the package.  I have used these for art journaling Document Life Projects,  Project Life backgrounds for photos, and background for SoulCollage works, even for making greeting cards.)

 

August 1, 2014

Homemade Greeting Cards

I have really enjoyed making greeting cards for all occasions for loved ones.  As I cut and paste, color and paint, create and plan, I further think of the person and my gratitude for he/she being in my life.

cards - inside

Embellishments are added, along with washi tape, which give dimension and interest to the card.  Some cards are made for my grandchildren and use their interests as a base.  In this card the picture part of a postcard from the US post office provided a perfect image complete with drawn in buildings and vehicle washi tape as the traffic below for a young grandson.

cards - 2014-6-6 Isai birthday inside

This was for a young granddaughter complete with bareback rider with recipient’s face pasted on, along with circus images and circus washi.

cards - 2014-6-6 Adira birthday inside

From the remarks received, the recipients appreciate the extra thought that goes into making  a card especially for them.  I also use my scans of the completed cards to put into Project Life albums to further commemorate their birthdays, anniversaries, new births, congratulations, etc.

January 7, 2014

Project Life Cards Booklet Gifts

One of the things I love about the Project Life cards (most of mine are from the various Becky Higgins collections) is the look and feel of them.  Each is colorful with either full pictures or partial with space for journaling and thick enough to feel like as card and handle continued touching.  I wanted to make something colorful and creative for my grandchildren and came up with these.

12-15-13  booklets for E,I,A

I took both 3×4 and 4×6 Project Life cards and punched holes to provide for the rings.  Many of the 3×4 cards I taped together to make a 4×6 with either washi tape (to add more color and design) or scotch tape (for a continuous look).   I then decorated many of the pages with stamps, stickers (of their favorite characters or interests), various embellishments.  The children could then write, draw, or further embellish the pages.

12-15-13  booklets inside

Also, little pockets are added in which strips of decorative paper and stickers can be inserted for them to play with or add to their booklets.  I also made pages out of individual papers I had on hand for added interest specific for that child.

Similar booklets could be made of any theme or color scheme for any occasion or person.  I spent quite a bit of time on these but really enjoyed it.  My Inner Child loved putting together the page combinations and embellishments for my grandchildren, using far more fun products than were available for me.

January 3, 2014

Washi Tape Ornaments

This year I made washi tape ornaments for everyone, a different design tape and patterns for each.  This was an easy and fun way to personalize presents and let people know I’m thinking of them and appreciate them.  Here is a sampling of some of the possibilities:

12-15-13  ornaments all

The base was a thin wooden tree or star shape from Hobby Lobby then covered with various designs of washi tape. The children received the more interesting shaped Santa and reindeer going over rooftops at night.  On the back of each I clipped a piece from a LOVE tape and added the year.

12-25-13  ornament backs

These pictures then became Project Life cards in my album along with a little explanation on another journaling card.  Fun, colorful, easy, expressing creativity in a small way for showing my gratitude for others.

September 27, 2013

Washi tape wheel holder

I recently bought this rotating wooden washi tape wheel holder from All Ready Memories and found it held most of my collection of washi tapes which I had acquired slowly – over time – on sale.

9-14-13  (1) washi holder w-tapes

It is constructed in a very clever way, allowing for the dowels to be removed and washi tape  added or moved around.  I organized the washi tapes primarily by color, as you can see from the picture above.   The following picture is taken from the side to show more of the construction with the dowels and holder wheel stand.

9-14-13  (2) washi holder side view

This has been so helpful, not only to have all my tapes handy and accessible at a glance but also to have something so colorful and attractive.  I use the washi tapes for Project Life cards, SoulCollage cards, greeting cards or use in various other art journaling and craft projects.

August 19, 2013

“The Olde Curiosity Shoppe” Project Life Page

I do not post most of my Project Life pages I do not post as I want to retain the privacy for others who might be pictured or mentioned in my pages.  This page has a folded note for personal details alongside a rabbit seen through the deck railing.

8-2-13  PL pages sewing machine (can use)

A picture of my sewing machine along with some of the containers I use to store sewing bobbins, embellishments, thread, etc., complete with cut-off tag with string ‘threads’ attached illustrated one of the journaling cards which described activities of that day:

8-2-13  PL pages sewing machine (can use) - Copy (2)

But my favorite is a picture of the old “cookie tin” and its story of usage over the years from childhood cookie tin  to sewing tin.  This tin has been a part of my life ever since I can remember, as I followed Nell into “The Olde Curiosity Shoppe” and gazed in wonder on the items pictured in the windows.

8-2-13  PL pages sewing machine (can use) - Copy

As a sewing tin I can periodically re-discover coming across it and, once again, delighting through my childhood eyes.

June 11, 2013

Project Life Organization – part 2

Seeing someone else’s organization pin on Pinterst that seemed very workable for me, I bought the initial item on the right from Hobby Lobby.  And I was also pleased to be able to use  their 40% off coupon since they carry some items of the Cropper Hopper brand. 

Cropper Hoppers

Cropper Hoppers

The Cropper Hopper on the right is great for organizing stencils, stickers, alphabets, labels, etc. – all the embellishments that go on my Project Life cards and scrapbook pages.  It expands far beyond what I have used.  I still kept the thickers, flowers, etc. in my (mentioned and pictured in a precious post) roll-around cart. 

A month later I went back and, again using my 40% off coupon, bought the Cropper Hopper on the left.  This was perfect for storing primarily my 12 x 12 inch papers organized by color – so much easier to see and get to.    Again, it was inspired by someone on  Pinterst using something different but with the same efficiency.  This item can also expand far beyond what I have used so far.   Both are attractive as well as extremely functional, with room for holding even more.

Needless to say, the addition of these two items prompted a further re-organization of the roll-around cart since some of the items were now in Cropper Hoppers.  I am now able to put more of my stamps and stamp pads in the rolling cart, allowing more to be handy and easily visible.

June 5, 2013

Project Life Organization

Each has their own specific organizing technique that works best, and many times it takes a while after starting any project, like Project Life, to figure out what is your best way.   One begins slowly accumulating items, like  card kits from Becky Higgins (www.beckyhiggins.com).  I started with the Clementine set and used only that for a while.  Now I have the standard sets of Clementine, Cobolt, Cherry and the mini For Him) and various 12×12 papers and stencils from the local Hobby Lobby (which now carries some of the Becky Higgins Project Life items).  I found that boxes and a plastic rolling cart from Hobby Lobby worked fine.

Project Life Card Storage

Project Life Card Storage

This also shows the many cards I printed out from Pinterest to insert because of the beautiful colors or the intriguing words.  I also made many cards by adding washi tape or doodling onto the journal cards (which I’ll show and discuss at a later time).

Rolling cart with all embellishments

Rolling cart with all embellishments

This cart can be rolled around to accommodate use of space and where one happens to be working.    The 2 lower drawers are filled with 12×12 paper and pads of paper, pictures I’ve taken from various batches so I can go back and look for what I want, stencils, stickers, paints/pens/brushes, stamps and stamp pads, etc.   The cart came with each drawer having a lid which is perfect for traveling but for everyday use, I took off the lids for easy and quick access.  Works great for me.

May 17, 2013

Snakes in the Garden

Recently I made a knitted striped snake for my granddaughter.  She loves the colors of purple and blue, so that is what I primarily used.  Then she seemed to want a hat – a decorated, fancy red hat.  Maybe an Easter bonnet.  And of course, I included the process pictures as a 6×12 insert in my Project Life album:

Knitted snake Project Life page

Knitted snake Project Life page

This was fun to knit and great for working on while watching TV.  And such a cute example of a snake, similar to some of the pretty green snakes in the garden hanging from a tree and even found in one of my shrubs.

I remember, when I lived on 25 acres out in the countryside here in the Ozarks, reaching in to pick green beans we had planted in 4-foot-wide double-dug French Intensive style garden beds.  Hard to do with all the rocks in the hillside ground.  (We wound up with a huge pile of rocks that we then used for building walls, etc..)   In using this intensive method, the beans were planted close together than ususal forming a thick layer of green bean leaves making it impossible to see beneath.  I reached in and… grabbed a snake!  I jumped back but managed to see what it looked like.  Ran inside and got out my snake book and there it was, a black king rat snake – totally harmless for humans and actually good to have around in one’s garden.

Snakes have their place, whether as a knitted play/display snake or in the garden.

April 29, 2013

Leaving the world of the 1928 treadle Singer sewing machine

My retirement has given me the opportunity to branch out in various creative endeavors, some of which I have done before but in a limited way, others I have never had the time to try, and still others whereby I expanded what I had been doing over the years.

My mother taught me how to sew and my grandmother taught me how to knit and crochet. Even in the early years of marriage, as we struggled with trying to make ends meet, we chose not to have me working but to be home with the children.  This made these handcrafts an imperative.  I sewed clothes for myself and for my children, drapes and slip-covers, all  on a 1928 treadle Singer sewing machine that only went forward (it was hard turning around all the material in a sofa slip-cover in order to get stitching backwards, but one could sew if the electricity went out.)  And I made numerous knitted things for my husband as well as the children and myself.   All very practical; all a part of ‘making do’.

But with retirement I started a quilt for my granddaughter which I had to stop because of problems with my eyes not seeing well enough on the dark-colored material of dolphins and whales in the ocean.  What could I still sew?

Then I remembered the Memory Bears made by a volunteer while I was working in hospice.  I used that pattern and made a University of Arkansas Razorback Bear for my teenage grandson. 

University of Arkansas Bear

University of Arkansas Bear

The picture above is the Bear holding a baseball key chain.  The one below is the Bear wearing a University of Arkansas (hoghat) baseball cap on.

UofA Bear wearing a University baseball cap

UofA Bear wearing a University baseball cap

Needless to say, he loved the Bear and its accessories, particularly the ferocious looking baseball cap. 

Time had moved on in many ways: one was I no longer had the 1928 treadle Singer sewing machine but did have one which sewed both forwards and backwards, which was a great help.    Another, I was sewing something for my grandson, not my children.  And yet another, I was doing this because I wanted to, not because I had to.  Time keeps moving on.

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