Friday, December 23, 2011

things i ♥ about Christmas

there are just a couple of empty spots left in my Christmas journal......
i'm really glad i left some room for the gingerbread house!

and my all-time favorite thing:  santa!!

now the only thing left to do is put some finishing touches on the inside covers.
i decided to keep it simple and just paint some lines of watercolor.

then i could add some thoughts and doodles 
to the inside front cover.......

along with my list of materials onto the inside back cover.

and here's the final accordion journal.....
just in time for Christmas!

i hope you have a beautiful Christmas holiday,
and a very artful 2012!!

{i'll be spending some time with my family, 
so i'll be away from my blog for several weeks.
thank you SO much for your sweet encouragement
and support this year..... i'll see you in the new year!  woo hoo!!}

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

hiding places

Christmas stockings......
one of the absolute best places in the
entire world to tuck a sweet little surprise!

{from my things i ♥ about Christmas journal.
materials:  derwent watercolor and inktense pencils,
micron pens, 2B graphite pencil}

Monday, December 19, 2011

inspiration monday

i was inspired to do a little doodlin' in my Christmas journal this weekend......but one thing i noticed when i opened it was that it looks a little "heavy" over on the left side where i added the extra page for my favorite carols.  so, i decided to try to balance things out and i cut another piece of paper to add to the right-hand side of the journal......

and this time i'm going to add some of my favorite Christmas movies!

  normally i keep things a lot more streamlined and a little less busy, but i don't know if it's such a good idea to argue with inspiration, so i just went with it's calling!

 once i had my doodles finished, i sewed it into the fold of the journal.  i had to kind of make up this stitching pattern,  since i didn't want to cover up my lettering with waxed linen thread.....

and thankfully, it's holding everything together the way it should!

and now my journal is looking a lot more balanced to me!
just a few empty spaces left......i'm hoping to finish it by Christmas!

{supplies:  arches textwove paper, micron pens, derwent watercolor and
inktense pencils, 2B graphite pencil, uniball signo white gel pen}

Friday, December 16, 2011

weekend recipe

the main ingredients to ensure a happy weekend are simple:
your favorite mug filled with hot cocoa, and a batch of cookies.

but, if you want to have a really, really great weekend.....
add lots of chocolate chips to the cookies.

and for an outrageously spectacularly awesome weekend,
make sure your cookies (with lots of chocolate chips)
 are freshly baked and warm from the oven!!

woo hoo!

here's hoping your weekend is outrageously spectacular.....
in an awesome-fresh-from-the-oven kind of way!!

{illustration from my "things i ♥ about Christmas" journal created
using derwent inkense pencils, micron pens, 2B grahite pencil}

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

29 ways


here are 29 fabulous ways to stay creative.....

{and since i noticed it wasn't included, i would like to suggest
"eat chocolate.....lots and lots of chocolate"
as number 30}


Monday, December 12, 2011

inspiration monday

my sweet bloggy friend chrissy gardner participated in the mini workshop "12 artsy ornaments of Christmas" (hosted by christy tomlinson), and i couldn't resist making her cute little paper cottage project!  chrissy used vintage book text to create her cottages, but since i don't have any vintage textbooks, i decided to use some prints of my journal pages.

and after i cut them apart using the patterns that chrissy provided,
and did a little assembly work.....

i had a sweet little artsy paper cottage of my own!!  i added a few other things like the heart punch in the door, and the "smoke" coming out of the chimney......

but why stop at making just one cottage, when you can make two.....

or three!!
(this little birdie on the roof is one of my favorites!)

but what i really love about these little cottages is when you tuck a battery-operated tea light candle inside,  it looks like there's lots of love and inspiration radiating from within.....
just the way a sweet little artsy paper cottage should be!

you can read more about chrissy's project
(she adds her houses to a strand of Christmas lights.....super cute!!)
and the "12 artsy ornaments of Christmas" here!

{materials used:  prints of my journal artwork, tacky glue, exacto knife, scissors,
micron pen, heart punch, polyester fiberfill, battery-operated tea light candle}

Friday, December 9, 2011

{pepper}mint condition

i hope you have a peppermint twisty,  super sweet confectiony,
 red-and-white-sugary-candy-getting-stuck-in-your-teeth weekend!!  enjoy!!

{illustration from my things i ♥ about Christmas journal.
supplies: micron pens, derwent watercolor pencils, graphite pencil}

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

garden gifts

in all the hustle and bustle of the holidays, mother nature is quietly going about her business and gifting us here in north florida with simple pleasures.

this explosion of december pink and yellow is such a treat in my back-porch-garden.....

and it looks like there's lots more to come!

{camellia japonica}

Monday, December 5, 2011

inspiration monday

one of the many things i ♥ about Christmas is listening to all the wonderful hymns and carols!  i have too many favorites, though,  and there isn't enough room in my little journal to include them,  i decided to just add another page!  i took a piece of the arches textwove paper that i used for the accordion journal,  and folded it randomly.

then, using my microns and koi watercolors,  i added a title to the front.

then i started to add some of my favorite Christmas music titles inside......

until i had filled up the page!

then i added my new page of carols to the accordion journal by matching up the folds and punching three holes down the middle using my needle.

i used a piece of white waxed linen thread to sew my carols-page in,
(i used the pamphlet stitch, shown here)

and then i tied the threads into a knot.

and now i have a little "journal within a journal" that's filled with all kinds of
fabulous Christmas music inspiration!

{materials used:  arches textwove paper, micron pens,  koi watercolors,
derwent watercolor pencils, waterbrush, graphite pencil, waxed linen thread, needle}

Friday, December 2, 2011

five ornies

                                             Source: via Lori on Pinterest

my very talented bloggy friend patty schaffer has been working some of her creative magic again.  she designed five ornaments for the styrofoam company, and i think they'd make any tree look merry and bright!  this very sweet red-and-white button ornie is one of my here to see patty's other fabulous designs, along with a how-to video and full instructions on how you can create some for yourself this weekend!!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

here's to you, marshmallow man

another thing i ♥ about Christmas is building a big snowman in the front yard.
i remember fun times as a kid in indiana trying to outdo my brothers by making a snowman that was bigger than theirs (which wasn't too hard, because they usually spent all their time throwing snowballs at me instead of building.....).
of course, living in florida, we don't see too many snowmen in front yards, so i think the next best thing is stacking three extra large marshmallows on top of each other.....a little melted chocolate in between the layers will usually hold them together. probably knew it wouldn't take me long to somehow bring
this conversation around to the subject of chocolate.....right....?  :))

{artwork created using koi watercolors, micron pens, graphite pencil}

Monday, November 28, 2011

inspiration monday

the holiday season is upon us, and i can't think of a more inspiring time of year!  to celebrate all the things i love about the season, i thought i'd create a little's how i did it:  take a piece of medium weight paper (i'm using arches textwove that measures approximately 4"x20").......

then fold it in half, and fold it in half again accordion-style until you have a booklet with four sections.
(you can adjust this any way you like and it will still work.....use any size paper, and the more you fold it in half, the more sections, or "pages" you'll have!)

now add some lettering and illustration to your front cover.....

along with some color around the edges, if you like. 
(i'm using some green pan pastel here)

and before you know it, you've created a cover for your new accordion book!

when you open your book up, there will be lots of empty space smiling at you, so
go ahead and start filling it up using your favorite supplies!

i added this Christmas tree on one of the paper folds (because i truly love all those twinkly little white lights!).   i think it'll look kind of neat when the book is folded.......

because you'll be able to see half the tree on each page!

it's going to be fun filling up all that blank space by adding a little bit of artwork here and there throughout the holidays.....and it will be a great way to be creative for just ten or fifteen minutes at a time!

welcome to the holiday season......the most wonderfully inspiring time of the year!!

{this accordion book was created using arches textwove paper, koi watercolors,
micron pens, pan pastel, graphite pencil, uniball signo white gel pen}

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

pyramids and priorities

 i shared this on my blog a couple of years's my own Thanksgiving version of the  traditional food pyramid, the recommended guide which suggests we eat less of what's at the top, and more of what's at the bottom.   which kinda explains where turkey is on my priority list, as opposed to pumpkin pie with whipped cream, sweet potatoes, and you guessed it:  chocolate.....heeheehee

tomorrow, we celebrate Thanksgiving here in America, and i just want you to know that i'm SO very grateful for you!  thank you for taking the time to stop by here and say hello.....i appreciate your comments and encouragement so much!  i'm going to take a few bloggy days off this week to spend with my family, but i'll see you on monday!!

many blessings to you and your sweet family!!

{food pyramid created using watercolor pencils, micron pens, 
waterbrush, graphite pencil}

Monday, November 21, 2011

inspiration monday

here's a fun way to challenge yourself by creating something with only three supplies......
you'll need a piece of paper, a pencil, and an eraser.
with your pencil, lightly draw some simple shapes onto your paper (i've drawn letters, but you can use any shape.....a flower, butterfly, circles, squares, abstract shapes, etc.).  
you can also use a stencil to pencil in your shape!

now add some texture by drawing some scribble lines all around the outside of your shape......

keep adding lots and lots and lots of little scribble lines!
(you can make some areas darker for great shadowing effects, too!)

and when you're done, you've got something that looks a little complicated, 
but it's actually quite simple!

but just to take it one step further, let's add a tiny bit of color (i know i'm breaking the
three-supply-keep-it-simple rule,  but curiosity got the best of me!).
i'm using a yellow colored pencil, but you can use whatever inspires you! 

and now i'm adding a small bit of orange colored pencil, too.
(i think the supply count is up to five now.....)

 i just added a few details here and there to keep it simple, but the sky's the limit here!
sometimes it's fun to let yourself be inspired with just a handful of supplies.....
see what you can come up with by using only three five supplies!!

{materials:  arches textwove (velin) paper, mechanical pencil,
white vinyl eraser, derwent coloursoft pencils (orange and deep cadmium)}

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