Craftiness and Creativity Abounds

Though my husband’s convinced that we don’t have enough time for our creativity, welotus close up.jpg manage to pull a few things off every now and then, and he still has enough hope to send me a few links now and again to keep the creativity well filled.  There’s a tutorial on making the pictured lotus pop-up card on Zakka Life — one of the new links and where the photo comes from.

The kiln is firing today, just finished actually, and we’ll see if anything blew up after all is cooled.  1800 degrees Farenheit is hot!

In my burst of organization, I’ve rearranged the former “school” room into even more of a “craft” room.  Some day maybe I’ll get up the nerve to call it a studio.  Who needs a dining room these days when nooks are more comfortable anyway?


We still have way too many books.  My hope is to get my fabric out and onto the shelves so I can see what I’ve got.  The larger tub under the table is full of sewing projects, and the tub on the table is my daughter’s quilt fabric . . . just waiting to be made . . . for two years now.

And, yes, some film editing is going on on the Community Access Television’s MacBookPro.  Our own mac is now over five years old.  We’ll upgrade the family one of these days and use what’s available in the meantime .  Many thanks to my hubby for sacrificing his laptop to replace the one I was using.  We tried to recycle!

Whatever you’re working on, may the autumn sunshine keep you motivated and energized until it’s time to sit down and get to work indoors.  Our soul work is neverending.

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Creative Bursts

For most of us, creative energy probably comes more sporadically than consistently.  From what I understand, though, the important thing is to make working creatively part of your daily round whether you feel like it or not.  As a writer it’s easier for me to journal and to blog.  It is harder for me, however, to make time to work on my fiction writing daily.  That’s where I need to step up on my self-discipline.  Whatever your talent, may you nurture it daily, for you, too, are an artist.

Last night I got a card-making burst of energy and finally made some thank you cards I’ve been meaning to.   Here’s one of them.  The center tag is on a large blank note card, folded in half, the inside of which has the written message.  All of it is hand-stamped.

Today also happens to be my in-laws’ 37th anniversary, so an anniversary card is coming up in the next half hour while sleeping child sleeps (hopefully).

If you’re already scoping out Father’s Day ideas, here are a couple of links:

  • — you can publish a regular type book, whether written by you (your collection of love poems for the father of your children) or your kids (the million things we love about DAD) OR you can make a photo album especially for him, the grandfathers, uncles, etc.
  • — this is geared toward publishing kid’s creative endeavors.  It seems like a newer site, but it seems to have lots of great stuff.  My kids are really into comics right now and are excited to maybe publish their own.

Sometimes we need a little help in coming up with creative gifts, and I hope this adds to your probably already crafty list of options.

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Treeless Paper

I don’t know where I’ve been, but somehow I missed the tree free paper movement.  Not until the other day at a local Tuesday Morning did I pick up some cards of the handmade-looking variety with flower petals in them.  Reading the back, it said the cards were “tree free,” “made from cotton socks, manufacturing waste and renewable plants.”  Wahoo!

So, as I work on some thank you notes, taking the easy route and just embellishing some already-made note cards, I’ll feel a little better about the materials I’m using.

It’s even better, though, to make your own paper, I know.  It’s a lot of fun, but just a bit time consuming and a little messy.  PioneerThinking has a great good tutorial for making your own paper.  Give it a go.  (All those paper shreds can come in handy, and I’m thinking a cheap litter box would make a good basin.  A great summer craft for the kids!)

May you have a blessed day on this National Day of Prayer.  Peace and love be yours. 

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Stormy Day Card-making

The skies just darkened and the rain’s pouring down.  It’s a day to do some indoor craft-time but not ideal for being on the computer.  I have what feels like a billion cards to make, giving thanks and birthday wishes to many, so I’m going to do that in just a bit.

Share in the creative energy and spirit of getting things done.  I’ll post photos when they’re finished.  (Apparently my son feels it’s a good idea to seek shelter with the cat . . . on my leg.)

* * * *

A lot can be said for cards that look handmade; they come in handy for  last-minute engagements, especially for us procrastinatin’ folk.  Below, however, is my husband’s birthday card — handmade and hand-stamped, of course.



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A Special Way to Say “Thanks”

You can get some pretty nice cards these days, and they’re even being made to look like they’re hand-made.  In a pinch, it’s great, but when you have to show someone your most sincere gratitude, you’re going to have to put some sweat into it.  Not really, of course.  More the mental variety.

Making things should be fun for you, or you just shouldn’t do them.  By all means, buy a card, dress, or whatever.  I enjoy even making something following instructions or using a design as inspiration, even if it’s just replication.  I keep telling my kids, “It’s okay if they draw the same thing you do.  Feel honored they like your work enough to copy it as they grow as artists.  In time, they’ll develop their own technique.”  Granted, some of us are still copying thirty years later, but, hey, at least we’re still trying.  : )

A design in my Cricut ™ Alphalicious cartridge manual inspired this card, and I really enjoyed it.  I did not like the cheap cardstock that I tried to use first, but it all works out in the end. 

  • Gather materials.  I start with what I know I need then gather the rest as I go.


  • Use Cricut ™ to cut matchbook card with cut-out “thank you” on Bohemian-themed paper.


  • Use aforementioned cheap cardstock to line the card, providing sturdiness and a nice contrast for the “thank you.”  I lined the back of the front and the front of the back, just using a glue stick.  (Sorry for the photo quality; that’s an operator error!)


  • A corner hole punch with a decorative design (from Stampin’ Up!) provides the perfect corners for an index card cut to length to fit into.  On this index card, I write my message (see photo further below).


  • I use some lovely SU! stamps to leave a signature on the back and to decorate the back of the front.  On the inside stamping, I used a white pen (also from SU!) to pull the stamps together and highlight some of the image more.


  • A brad holds a flower in place to embellish the front.


  • Like I said, more tools come out along the way.  Thankfully, everything is in the same room.  When I’m finished (even if it’s early in the morning), everything has to go back to its place.  I wouldn’t want little fingers experimenting without supervision.

My creative process begins with a visualization of what I want, and I create along the way, keeping my eye open to the whole and sensitive to the design.  Soon I hope to make several cards and sell at a local shop or have an Etsy store.  (Beware!  Etsy’s addictive!)

Be the first couple of folks to comment on this site, and I’ll make you a card, too!  Comment and leave me your addy.  I swear I won’t spam you!

Enjoy the Spring!  It’s my days outside that are leading me to stay up late doing this stuff at night!

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