HDH179 - Samhain Sunset challenge

So how was everyone's Hallowe'en holiday?!  I hope it was delightfully dark and macabre ;)  Mine was pretty quiet... stayed home to hand out goodies to all of the little demons about.  I ran out of candy around 7:30pm... WTF?!  Didn't we used to stay out until like 9 or something?  They started around 5pm, which is way too early in my opinion.  What IS trick or treating etiquette?  Oh well.  
I watched a few scary movies while all of the candles in the house were lit... it was quite delightful.

I've got photos of the house, but that will be another post ;)

Sooooooooo, back to a little bit of papercrafting goodness... over at Haunted Design House, we are having our LAST challenge of the year, which expires this Sunday at 5pm CST.  The Minions are in need of a little yard time from the dungeon, but will pop in now and again to keep everyone on their toes.
So, what is the challenge?

Macabre Monday challenge,
"Samhain Sunset."
You are to create a dark, Gothic, or Hallowe'en
based art piece that represents a 
Samhain Sunset.
We're looking for the colors of a beautiful fall sunset.
Think purplesredsoranges, and yellows.
Use them as you wish, just keep it within our guidelines.

We are sponsored by the incredibly talented Mitzi Sato-Wiuff, of 
She has offered up a very generous prize of $15 worth of digis (digis ONLY)
to each of our GTs this challenge.

Enter your sunset project here.

Mitzi does some AMAZING artwork and digital stamps!  There are so many beautiful images with which to work, I had a reeeeeally hard time deciding!  I went with her

Isn't she gorgeous?!  And I only used a portion of this beautiful image!  Be sure to check out the whole image... seriously awesome!

Shades of orange and copper have always been favorite colors of mine, so this challenge was right up my alley.  I tried to create an ombre effect with the tones in her hair and wings from dark to bright, but the photos look a bit washed out... sorry.

The patterned paper is from Memory Box (I think.... Nightfall or something?).  And I used a TON of different Copic colors on the hair and wings... seriously.  I think I'll be adding a bit o' Stickles to the dots and parts of her wings... she needs some glitz, me thinks :)

Don't forget to enter the challenge... who wouldn't want to win some of these amazing images?!

What do you think?


HDH178 - Zombies and Creeps

I've been gearing up for the season!  I've got the house cleaned, organized and decorated, the creepy black vines twisted about & the bats hung in the tree.  I'm even hosting a little Girls'-Night-In combination Halloween & jewelry party on Thursday :)  Complete with creepy snacks & libations... don't worry... I'll be posting pics later!  But for now, how about a little Halloweenie card creation?

This fortnight's challenge over at Haunted Design House is Zombies and Classic Creeps and is sponsored by Simply B Stamps.  The Minions & I are using the Limited Edition Zombies and Creeps digis, one of the newest of the Steampunk Collections drawn by the fabulous Abigail Larson.

I used SBS's Collette image that I colored with Copics & then fussy cut around the frame.  I used 13th Hour paper line from KaiserCraft, an ancient metal word plaque, paper flowers & black satin ribbon.  The die cut you see at the bottom is actually the negative cut from Memory Box's DeLacie Border die... me likey!

skin:  BG96, 93, 90
purple:  V28, 25, 22
black:  T8, 6, 4
brains:  R56, 27, 24
curtains:  YR27, YR24, E13, E55, E99 shadows

She came out pretty muted, but the paper line is very muted, so it matches well.  I probably should have reversed the curtain color with her dress, but too late now!

You've got a few days left to join us in the challenge, so pop on by!!

What do you think?


HDH177 - Dimensional Hallowe'en - Nightmare Catcher

Surprise!  I told you I was going to have a little Halloweenie goodness :)

That's right, I'm playing along with the Minions this week at HauntedDesignHouse...
the BEST crafty challenge blog around!
This fortnight challenge is:
The bonus?  We have been sponsored by:

They have some wonderful chipboard, stencil & mask products.
I chose to work with their awesome layered coffin with web and a couple of creepy spider chipboard cuts.  I'm calling it a Nightmare Catcher... Check it:

I first sprayed the lid & interior with Dylusions' Black Marble ink spray.  I wrapped the lid with some lovely batty webbed lace & outlined it with some crystal/metal studded trim.  A jewelry pendant & a Tim Holtz skully finished it off nicely.

Now for the best part... the inside!  I apologize for the poor photography... shiny stuff reeeeeally doesn't like to be photographed.  Just sayin'.

I painted the rim & interior sides with Tattered Angels' Glimmer Glaze (Oil Slick).  I also painted the spiders with Oil Slick & Chianti... highlighting them with Picket Fence Distress Stain.  The spider web was highlighted with Platinum Liquid Pearls.

See all of that lover-ly mica in the background?  My new favorite thing:
Tarnished Mica Fragments from Stampendous.  LOVE this stuff!
I want to cover everything in it.

The metal tag & letters are a million years old, so who knows from whence they came!
I really wish I could photograph this properly, because it looks pretty awesome in person... if I don't say so myself.

You've still got a few days to come play along for a chance at some chipboard goodness from Tando!  Just go HERE and link up your 3-d creation before Sunday at 5pm CST.

What do you think?


HDH #176 - Who Are You Supposed to Be?

Where has the time gone... can you believe that it is almost October?!  I have been loving the small glimpses of Halloweenie-ness that have been floating about the web-o-sphere as of late.  It makes me wish the leaves would turn colors faster so I can get into full-on Autumn mode ;)
The crisp evenings have been soooooooo lovely.  It's hard to get out of bed when all I want to do is snuggle down into my light blankie in the mornings!

Anyhoo... here is a bit of shocking news:
I actually made a card.


I know.


AND it was for a challenge over at Haunted Design House to boot.  Woo Hoo!
Hellllooooooo, Minions... didya' miss me?  ;)
I've missed you!
Why is it that life gets totally nuts just when I want to get my mojo on, get creative and enjoy my favorite time of year?
Karma, did I reeeeally f*ck up THAT bad somewhere that I don't recall?  ;)

Good gawd... it's been so long since I've blogged that I can't even reel myself in and stay on track.  
Ahem.  Back to the challenge...
Basically, create something that reflects a costume that you have always wanted to wear for Halloween, but haven't been able to do so, yet.  This challenge is being sponsored by
The Minions and I were given the new Rick St. Dennis images from IBS to work with, and they are delightful!  IBS sells digis as well as rubber stamps.

I have always loved the intricate styling of the whole Steampunk movement.  But to really do it right, it would cost a fortune for one night of frivolity... but maybe someday :)
So, I used Rick's Steampunk Peg image... love her!

Here are the Copics I used:
skin:  E42, 41, 40
brown:  E87, 84, 81, 89 (shadow)
orange:  E08, YR18, YR27, YR15, E19 (shadow)
teal:  BG18, 57, 53, 78 (shadow)
background:  E84, 81
(papers are from Graphic 45)

That's it!  And I might even surprise you in a week or two and create again... you just never know :)

What do you think?


HDH173 - Astrological Atrocities

It's getting ever closer to THAT time of year... and I am trying my hardest to get my creep on.

I am having an extremely hard time with my creativity as of late... well... for quite awhile now!  So, to ease on into it, I have created a couple of clean & simple cards for the

Astrological Atrocities
You are to create a dark, Gothic, or Hallowe'en 
based art piece that is somehow directly and obviously inspired by
the signs of the Zodiac or  Astrology.

Teri over at Delicious Doodles is being so kind as to sponsor us for this challenge, and she has worked up some AWESOME astrological sign digi's!  She has done two versions of each sign... one line for the more mainstream, and the other for those of us that prefer the dark side called "Horrorscopes" >;)

My first offering is her Horrorscope Sagittarius:

What is great about this line is that Teri has completed most of the shading for you!

My second offering is her Horrorscope Leo:

And how appropriate that I pick this one... it just so happens to be the hubby's sign.  Poot's birthday was yesterday, so I guess I should give this to him... or maybe I'll just show it to him ;)

That's it.  
Told you... super simple cards today.
I hope you're not terribly disappointed...

What do you think?


Thought I'd share a bit...

Over the last year I've lost about 60 pounds, 20+ of which has been since Mid-March when I got the ol' diabetes confirmation.  :)  All of this was strictly due to changing my eating habits.  Since March, my bad cholesterol has dropped over 35 points and my A1c went from 10.6 to 6.1 (almost within normal range)... yeay!  My doctor kinda geeked-out on me, he's so thrilled with my progress.  

I've never eaten so healthy... it really pisses me off that I didn't start all of this sooner.  Not that my genetics would've won in the end anyways since both of my parents are diabetic, but I TOTALLY could have staved it off longer had I been smart about it.  What really sucks is that I have to constantly be aware of everything I eat, how many carbs & calories are in it, eat certain amounts of protein & fiber, eat "so many" hours apart, never skip a meal, blah... blah... blah.  There was a reason why I didn't diet before...
it sucks.
And not in a good way ;)

Daily finger-pricking to check blood sugar levels, not to mention the whole medication ritual.
I actually had to get one of those 7-day multi-divided pillboxes...
I am officially an old lady.

I have been going to the gym every day though, except Sundays, for the past few weeks.  Starting super slow... just brisk walking on the treadmill and the elliptical for an hour, and some very light strength training a few times.  And I'm gonna say it... I wish I could wear compression shorts & shirts all day, every day :)  They are so compfy (once you win the battle of getting them on) and they hold everything in... way better than Spanx... just sayin'.

Oh gawd... what a whiner.  Sorry folks, but sometimes you've just gotta vent.
Now if I could just get out of this rut and get creative... my studio table is soooooooo close, yet so far away...


Tiddly Inks Challenge #110

I actually played along with a challenge!
Tiddly Inks' current challenge is to "use a Wryn"... and the Wryns happen to be my favorite line of Christy's images!  So, without further ado:

I used the "Wryn New Nest" image... isn't it adorable?  I know, I know... where is the creepiness, Barb?  I told you I've been mojo-less lately, and this image was springy and upbeat, so I decided to forgo the macabre this time around :)

Patterned papers:  My Mind's Eye
Grass punch:  Martha Stewart
Die:  Square Nestabilities

Main Copic colors:
skin:  E11, 00, 000, R20 cheeks
hair:  YR23, Y26, 23, 21
pink:  R85, 83, 81
tree:  E57, 53, 51

Yes, I DID fussy-cut the image!
I also drew in the higher branch of the tree to give a little more height to the image.
And yes, pop dots are my friends :)

What do you think?


A little life update...

Bad news...  I just haven't been feelin' the creative mojo as of late.
What sucks worse, is the fact that I actually have a teensie bit of spare time that I could be using to get a little artsy.  WTH?
I can only organize my studio so many times before there is just nothing left to do but create ;)

Good news... I made a card today!  I'll be posting it soon :)

Bad news... I REALLY miss working at The Scrapbook Page part time since they have closed.
I loved the people I had worked with, and so many of the customers had become friends.

Good news...  my Architectural design business is BOOMING!  I'm extremely busy right now, which is definitely a sign that the economy is on the rise.
My favorite current project is a large custom house for a 10 acre site... fun!

Bad news... diabetes really really REALLY sucks.

Good news... I'm doing really well with diet and am actually eating healthier than I ever have before.
Now to just get off my boo-tay and work out!

AWESOME news... Mama altered a pair of my nice dress slacks and she took 4-1/2" out of the waist alone!

That is all for now... just thought I'd let everyone know what's been up :)
Stay tuned for my cute Copic coloring goodness!


HDH165 - Skeletal Remains Challenge

Super simple card today for the fortnightly challenge over at Haunted Design House!  The challenge?
No problem for my fellow Halloweeniacs... skulls, bones, etc.

Bonus:  we are being sponsored by Octopode Factory!  Fun and quirky images with an edge.  Here is  my clean and simple, Copic-colored offering:

I used the dude from the Day of the Dead Couple, Hallowe'en Tombstones, & Skull Head Sticks.  What is great about OF's images, is that some of them come as png files with transparent backgrounds... perfect for layering up several and creating an entire scene!

You've still got a week to participate over at HDH, so don't miss out on the fun!

What do you think?


Design Team Throwdown Challenge #3 at Smeared and Smudged

That's right kids... I'm baaaaack!  I've had to take a hiatus from the awesomeness that IS the
blog, and I must say that I have missed getting my creep on >`:) 
So, to mark the occasion, I decided to go big and, along with a couple of my talented Minions, enter
Smeared and Smudged's

It's been awhile since I've done a mini book.  But, mini books were where I started in this huge world of papercrafting, so it was about time I went back to my roots... only a little darker this time, of course :)  Be warned, there are a TON of pictures with this post, but me loves the details... check it:

The front cover is by far my favorite part.. I've used glass & leather as my base covers.  Sometimes it pays to be an Architect:  access to some lovely sample materials :)
Leather flooring is seriously sah-weet!

Ranger's Glossy Accents is my friend!  It is everywhere in this book... works great for metal & glass, like those Making Memories pewter alphas.

I added a grommet to the leather for added strength, which is helpful considering how freakin' heavy the glass is alone.  The glass has an awesome texture to it and beveled edges (bonus!).

I got out my Ranger Melting Pot & UTEE... so much fun!  After stamping (Artful Illusions stamp) into the warm goo, I added some Pearl-Ex for shimmer.

I also added some glass beads & alligator clip that dangle from the D-ring binder.

A couple of Maya Road stick pins & an uber-cool metal skull button finishes out the front cover.  I added some Crackle Accents on the flowers & the skull eye sockets

The inside pages were made from wood veneer.  All were stamped in black & heat embossed with superfine clear EP.  I then used Ranger's Picket Fence Distress Stain to low-light areas... it wipes off of the embossed images so they really stand out:

Page One:

Artful Illusions stamp.  Tim Holtz pen nib & tissue tape.  Key, clip & gem sources unknown.

Page Two:

Artful Illusions (headstones, script) & Smeared Ink (crow & window) stamps.  Prima resin square & 7Gypsies tab.  Coffin nail source unknown.

Page Three:

Artful Illusions stamps & Moxxie pumpkin paper.  7Gypsies metal tag.  Brad, clip & bottle cap sources unknown.  Bottle cap filled with Crackle Accents & rubbed with black ink.

Page Four:

Red Lead Paperworks stamp & Fancy Pants rub-on.  Tim Holtz skull & token embellishments.  Clip & chain sources unknown.

Page Five:

Red Lead Paperworks stamp.  Tim Holtz spider & Making Memories clip.  Jewelry rosette source unknown.

Back Cover:
Same leather & glass base as front cover, then I snipped the prongs off of some Karen Foster brads & attached them with Glossy Accents to use as feet to prevent scratches on the glass.

Ta-da!  If you are still with me, thanks... if not, you totally missed out ;)  I had a blast making this... getting inky, messy and finally using some of the awesome embellishments I have been hoarding for so long!

If you could take a look at the work of all of the Design Teams that are participating in this challenge and cast your vote, it would be appreciated... even more so if you vote for the HDH (Haunted Design House) Minions!  Voting is from April 11th at 12:01am thru April 12th at midnight... just go HERE to vote.  You must be a member of the Smeared and Smudged Forum, but it only takes a minute!

What do you think?


Lookie what I found...

A sweet, super simple card that I never posted!  And this is from awhile back:

"Watercolor Plants" & "Love You" stamp sets were from The Angel Company (NLA).
However, I believe Red Rubber Designs may be releasing the sentiment set soon.
Keep your eye out for that one... it is a great set.

The watercolor technique was done by applying Tombow markers directly to the stamp, misting with water, then stamping.  Mist again without applying more marker, and stamp a second time, mist again & stamp a third time.

A little Scor-bugging, inked edges, sheer ribbon and heart-shaped pearl round this out.

What do you think?