Thursday, July 28, 2011

It reminds me of Nana....

I've been wading in a creative slump as of late, so I hopped on over to Moxie Fab World's Tuesday Trigger for inspiration.  
French Knot/Squares to Cherish
This reminds me of my Nana.  I used to love watching her make afghans just like this so many years ago.  We would snuggle up together on the sofa and she would tell me stories while she crocheted/knit.  It's a memory I'll cherish forever.

I absolutely love the coloring in this photo:  the teal blue with the purple and hints of pink.  I also found the combination of circles and squares interesting as well.

This is what I came up with for my FIRST card:
Happiness is Reflective
I followed the color scheme with this card and let thoughts of my Nana guide me in the design.

On my second card (I rolled with the inspiration, folks!), I went ahead used the design of the afghan as my guide.
You Are Special To Me
I incorporated both the squares and circles and used a natural trim and string to bring in the texture.  A far simpler design than I'm used to, but it felt good to create outside of the box (for me anyway).

So, if you're looking for some inspiration, might I suggest heading on over to Moxie Fab World and join in the challenge.  The deadline for posting is Sunday, August 7th. 

Thanks for stopping by,

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

August Tag

Growing up only 30 minutes from the coast of Maine was amazing!  I have so many fond memories of my parents taking my sister and I on day trips to the ocean to play in the surf, bask in the sun and explore for sea shells.  Every summer towards the end of July-beginning of August, we would rent a cabin for two weeks at Old Orchard Beach.  It was my favorite time of the year, and it's my inspiration for this months tag.
I love using vintage images in my creations, and when I found this one, I thought of my sister and I (sans the stockings and bloomers, of course!).
I clear embossed the water in the picture to add a little shimmer and texture and inked the edges.
I then took a standard shipping tag and gave it a heavy coat of Elmer's glue and immediately painted over it with white acrylic paint.  As it dries, the glue causes the paint to crack like an old piece of driftwood. 
I stamped a few random starfish (Inkadinkado) and heat embossed them with Tim Holtz's Distress Embossing Powder in Antique Linen.  The effect was subtle, but I loved the way it turned out.
I painted the wooden fence with brown, black and white acrylic paints to get the harsh look of a fence in the elements at the coast.  Sanded to distress it a bit can never have too much distressing!  The tulle at the bottom was added as a sandy effect.  

I thought the banner added interest and went well with the era of the picture.  A little K&Company metal art, some twine and a multi-colored grosgrain ribbon to finish it off.
I found myself reminiscing while making this tag, and to me that's the best kind of art...when you've left a little bit of yourself behind in it.

Thank you for stopping by, and I hope I've inspired you to create.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

My peace...

My day starts at 5:15.  A cup of coffee (or three) and some time with Freddy and Mr. Tiggs... my pleasingly plump kitties who decided long ago that mornings were the time to make their needs abundantly clear with constant head bumps and excessive purring.  My nephews arrive at 6:00 for their 12 hour stay with the girls and I.  I feed them their second breakfast (you know how growing boys can eat!), and tend to my own three girls as they stagger downstairs in intervals from their slumber.

And since I'm everything to everyone (even an alarm clock), I wake my husband at 7:15.  By 7:45, my husband has left for work and the kids and I are starting our day...which could be a day at the beach, the playground and a picnic or a visit with their Great Grandmother in the nursing home (we go twice a week).  I try to keep them busy during their summer vacations since idle minds and hands leads to trouble. 

If we're home, then I do the usual chores that are left to Moms...dishes, laundry, and cleaning while the kids play games, do arts and crafts or ride their bikes outside.
The girls decided that they wanted to decorate headbands
  Don't get me wrong, I don't have to do everything, my girls have their weekly chores and the boys have learned to clean up after themselves, so I do have time for another cup of coffee every now and then and to check on my small online business.  The worst part of my typical day has to be lunch and dinner.  It's almost impossible to make something that everyone likes, and the clean up afterwards is tedious. 

Now, I realize that I'm no different than most Moms out there, and I'm always mindful of how lucky I am that I have the opportunity to be home with my girls, but with that being said, I don't get much time to myself.  I have to make time (late at night after everyone else is fast asleep) for my peace...
and my peace is creating....

I love creating cards because I'm impatient.  You can see the finished product rather quickly, and I can always finish a couple before it's time for me to recharge with my 4-5 hours of sleep.

Where do you find your peace?

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Journaling is a BEAUTIFUL thing...

I began journaling at a young age.  I have stacks of old journals in a variety of forms...from old notebooks to elaborately adorned pieces of art.  I sometimes go back and read them; thankful that I established a habit of writing down the events of the day and how I felt at the time.  I realize that every letter, every word, sentence, and paragraph is a time in my life that has led up to the person I am today.  Not every entry is a happy one, but I've grown from both the good and bad in my life.  Of course, I have a pact with my sister, that if anything should ever happen to me, she is to burn every last one of my journals.  I write for me.  It's my private outlet not meant for anyone else. 

There are those who write for the benefit of a legacy or a history, and I think that's admirable.  It's my opinion that these types of journals should be pretty to look as well as functional, so I create them from vintage books with lots of embellished divider pages.  I also like to include secret pockets and envelopes for keeping little treasures.  It's my hope that it will inspire someone who doesn't normally journal to start.

One of my latest creations is the BEAUTIFUL journal.
The cover isn't anything more than heavy card stock that I covered in acrylic paint and glue to give it a distressed crackle look.  It almost looks like aged wood to me.
It's bound with "o" rings so that one could rearrange the pages or add more at any time.
I like to add vintage images to most of my journals...they just remind me of the beautiful days gone by.  I also think they tell a story and isn't that what journaling is?
I add tags that are pretty and functional.  You could use them to highlight a particular page or as a bookmark.
There are always secret pockets here and there for storing little trinkets and treasures.
I like to include inspiring quotes as well.
Each divider page is a one-of-a-kind piece of art that tells a story.  It's up to the journaler to interpret what it means for them.
Envelopes can hold little notes written outside the journal...maybe a poem created on a napkin.
I love handmade paper and try to include it whenever I can as well standard lined paper for functionality.  One doesn't have to just write in a could paste photos, sketch, or paint what you feel on a particular day.
One of my favorite things to create is a journal.  I absolutely love the thought of someone using it to record a precious memory...a precious life.  I also create custom journals based on certain themes or ideas for my customers.  I've created Baby Journals, Wedding Journals, Dating Journals, journals with specific themes such as fairies or all white.  Those are the most fun to create, and I hold each one dear to my heart knowing it's something that will be cherished for a lifetime.

You can find my journals at Reverie Creations on Etsy.  I'm always adding new items, so be sure and stop by often, and if you'd like me to create a custom journal just for you, all you have to do is let me know.  I'd be honored to work with you on it.

Thank you for spending some time with me, and I hope I've inspired you to start journaling.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Botanical trend...

In previous posts, I've mentioned my love of journaling.  I've been journaling for years now, and I'm always looking to inspire others to journal as well.  I think it's a wonderful outlet and a way to remember important life experiences. 

Creating unique journals is a passion of mine, and I'm always looking for new themes.  Botanical seems to be the trend now-a-days.  It can be found everywhere...from pillows to clothing to greeting cards.  A style from the days of old when they used to illustrate flora and fauna as a learning tool.

Moxie Fab World is hosting a 'Fanatical About Botanical' challenge.  Upload a paper crafted project using botanics in an innovative way to their page by August 10th and you could win a moxie fab prize!  How exciting!  If you're in need of some inspiration, take a peek at their post!

Here is a journal I created from a vintage book using a botanical theme:
I've used the original book pages as the base for each divider page...trying to utilize as much of the vintage book as possible.
The journal is bound together using "o" rings so that it can be added to or rearranged.
There are little pockets and envelopes tucked in here and there for storing trinkets and treasures.
I also like to include tags for interest, and they can be used in a variety of ways...highlighting a certain page or as a bookmark.
Whenever possible, I include handmade paper (along with the standard lined paper).  There are ways to journal other than just writing.  You can paint, sketch or paste photos to a page. 

I hope you've been inspired to start journaling and to stop by Reverie Creations to purchase a one-of-a-kind journal for yourself or for that someone special as a gift.  I'm always adding new items, so be sure and stop by often.  I can also custom design a journal just for you.

 I appreciate the time you've spent with me, and I'm excited to see how your 'Fanatical About Botanical' with the Moxie Fab World challenge
Have a wonderful day!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

A sneak peek...

CHA (Craft and Hobby Association) will be hosting it's conference and trade show on July 19-21st in Rosemont, IL at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center.  It's a perfect time to snatch up the latest and greatest products from your favorite companies before they hit the stores, and to participate in demonstrations and meet and greets.  It's a dream for me to attend someday. 

Most of the popular crafting companies have sneak peeks of their new products before the conference.  A kind of torture for those of us who have a hard time waiting for something we've decided we want...right now.
I have to admit that I'm partial to Prima Marketing, Webster's Pages, and My Mind's Eye, so I'm going to share some of their peeks here, but you can go to the ScrapbookUpdate blog for an entire list of sneak peeks.

Prima Marketing has this new Printery Collection with a Victorian Era feel that I'm just in love with!
The flowers are to die for!  Jeweled centers, vintage accents, ruffled fabrics and gilded paper...who could imagine it better?
I also love their new Pixie Glen Collection with it's pixies, sprites, tiny roses, soft flowers and sparkling vines!
Look at those pearl centers...just beautiful!

Webster's Pages is another one of my favorite companies and their new Let's Celebrate Collection is a perfect example of why.
The papers are soft and sweet with a nice vintage feel.
The coordinating embellishments are like sugar on top...
and the embroidery shapes are a perfect twist to the standard doily! 
I can envision using this collection for birthday invitations and party favors!

Webster's creates a new line every year for the holidays.  This year it's A Botanical Christmas.  Love the freshness of it.

My Mind's Eye has also created a new holiday collection (Lost & Found Christmas) using distressed reds, greens, creams and browns.  Perfectly traditional and timeless.
I can hardly wait to start on my holiday cards!

Every time CHA rolls around, I find myself making a never-ending list of all the products I have to have.  The designers have certainly outdone themselves again. 
I'd be interested to know what's on your 'must have' list?

Thanks for stopping by.