Sunday, November 30, 2008

it's elementary

the theme open for interpretation this week at inspire me was "table". i made a postcard collage using the table of elements, the five elements according to chinese philosophy (metal, earth, wood, water, fire) and the chinese symbol for harmony. being in harmony with the world around us does seem elementary.

you put the lime in the chocolate

over at this thursday, the challenge was to use lime, pink and chocolate colors together. great combo, and i added some blue too. it was so much fun, i made a set of 4 cards and put them up for sale on my etsy.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

angel collage

i made this 8.5x11 collage for two challenges and it will be a christmas gift for my godmother. awfully big art adventure is looking for angels, and art creations friday provided a hand-painted background to incorporate into any piece. i tweaked the color of the background to be more goldy-rusty. i found a vintage lady in just the right pose on the internet, tweaked her coloring a bit too. her wing and gown is made from a variety of papers - handmade, translucent, and foil. the holographic foil in her gown is bronze, but the lighting turned it rainbow when i photographed it. i added gold mesh netting from the fabric store over the top. in the picture frame she is carrying is a detail from a painting called "spring" that i love, it's at the getty museum. i used anise seeds for the stars in the corner. really fun to make!

Friday, November 28, 2008

carnival issue 3 ••••• 3-dimensional

welcome to the 3rd dimension! 
i have some great inspiration for you to bust out of the flat paper zone.

let's start with ready-to-go blank board mini shadow boxes...these are so much fun to fill and decorate.  i chose to make "travel boxes" - each one will celebrate a place i visited. this one is for paris—my mother and i had a wonderful time there several years ago.

here are the basic steps:

1.  line the inside with paper or photos. my side walls are covered with a sliced up aerial photo of paris that i took from the top of the eiffel tower. my back wall is a little fleur-de-lys die-cut with a picture of a statue of joan of arc inside...the statue was right around the corner from our hotel.
2.  choose some charms and/or cut-outs to adhere in front of the back wall. i chose a lamp post from a picture i took in the park at the base of the eiffel tower, and a metal charm of...well, you get the idea.
3.  decorate the outside. i distressed mine with black, blue and bronze inks and a couple different rubber stamps.
4.  print out the name of the place you visited on translucent paper and adhere to the inside of the window.
i plan to make a bunch more for other trips i have taken to mexico, alaska, hawaii, puerto rico, jamaica...they'll look so cute lined up on a shelf or windowsill, or even hanging in a mobile.  click here for a gallery of beautiful design ideas for these boxes.

and now for some wonderful submissions i received and some terrific posts i found!

•  carli made this adorable photo cube for her kids - so creative and interactive too.

•  patricia posted this great ornament design ...i remember making these as a child, can't wait to make them again!

•  tamara shares instructions for how to make an ingenious box card to hold a greeting and a surprise.

•  angela made a gorgeous poinsettia ornament and card by cutting and layering.

•  over at little house in the suburbs, you can learn how to make your own beautifully textured handmade paper from the stems of an okra plant. 

•  for tons of family friendly 3-d craft projects - check out jolly mom!  she hosts "make something monday" which challenges you to make a fun new craft each week.

thanks for reading!
issue #4 will be posted on december 12th.  
it will showcase the best of 2008 - what were your most creative papercrafting projects this year?  

email me with your ideas and submissions!

vivid consciousness

in describing his agnosticism, albert einstein uses the term "vivid consciousness" which i really relate to. it's a wonderfully descriptive pair of words when thinking of science and humanity, as well as art and religion.

this is my first experience with a blog called inspire me thursday. the challenge was to use an albert einstein quote as inspiration for a piece of art. i love blurring the lines between arts and crafts, in fact, i have decided that my new year's resolution for 09 will be to identify as both an artist and a crafter. both have merit in terms of creative expression.

each element in this postcard has symbolism for me, right down to the glue dots that adhere the translucent circles to the foundation. it was great fun to create!

kris kringle

it's santa time at theme thursday...the vertical strips in this collage are recycled from old christmas cards. i added sparkly holly leaves and a snowflake with my trusty glitter pen. i love this old-fashioned santa!

Thursday, November 27, 2008


this week's challenge at one powerful hour was to use inchies in a larger piece of work. i know inchies are a big deal right now, but i never thought i'd have the patience to do collage work on such a small scale - i'm not into moo cards either for the same reason. but then it hit me (rather like a 2x4)....oooohhh, just make a larger collage and then cut it up into one inch squares, d'oh! you still have to work with small pieces, but i can deal much easier with the concept now that i stepped outside the inchie box.

so i had this scrappy little needlefelted piece that i was doodling with while working a trade show a while back, where i was demonstrating just how easy needlefelting is. I cut two inchies from it and used them in this postcard, which will be my little reminder as i continue to try new things outside my comfort zone!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

pensive femme

i found a new challenge blog in the netherlands - art creations friday - i need another challenge blog like a hole in the head, but this is their first post and folks seem to be excited about it. they gave a photo that we all had to use in some way. she's a pretty one!

recycled art

at one powerful hour, the challenge was to make something with stuff that would've been destined for the trash. i did a postcard with small paper scraps, a short piece of leftover string, and a little metal buckly thing that was at the bottom of my toolbox, no telling what it belonged to. i added a charm and some stamping in brown and bronze. the center tiles remind me of the night sky.

Monday, November 24, 2008

dark flowers

the challenge at spoonful of sugar was to use flowers in a card, plus you have to use a rubber stamp image. since i am hooked on the 4x6 postcard format, i made one with some dark floral and scrolly papers to tile together, with a flower silhouette stamped in silver ink.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

the fool

in tarot, the joker card is the fool...symbolized by feathers and an 8-spoked wheel. sunday postcard art has a joker theme this week, and while batman and poker decks are what folks tend to think of first, myself included....i opted for a slightly different take. i have made 4 art postcards so far....they are so much fun!

i wanna be a cowgirl

theme thursday is all about the wild west this week. i did a 4x6 postcard paper collage with a pic of a western pin-up girl, i even burned the edges - fun! what was that 80's song, it was funky and monotone...."i wanna be a cowgirl, so you can be my cowboy - yippie ki-yay yippie ki-yo..."

assembly line of cards

we needed 20 thank-you cards for a group of sales reps at work, so two of us did 10 each, using fantastiques characters, velvet papers and ribbon. i just distressed the edges with chalk inks and adhered it all down. the little brads allow some of the arms and legs to move. it was fun to have a crafty work assignment! all 10 cards can be seen on my flickr page.

Friday, November 21, 2008


these are stampin' up silhouette stamps with color box chalk inks that i used for the challenge at our creative corner. pale blue and brown together seems to be quite the color trend these days, i see it everywhere in paper and fabric.

cuppa joe

daring cardmakers wants coffee and lots of it! here is my coffee-themed card for their challenge this week. the coffee paper is from flair designs. i drew the little white spirals in the center of the daisies because it reminds me of frazzled cartoon eyes...or someone who has had too much caffeine! i do love coffee though, can't wait 'til morning...

Thursday, November 20, 2008

quick fire challenge

this little quickie for the ccayr blog had to follow tamara's design layout of 3 rectangles and a circle layered like this. the stocking comes from a recycled card, and my little snowflake spins around on the brad. i also used a glitter pen to highlight the stocking and all its stuff. love it!

veggie chili

i hadn't really thought of scrappin' a recipe card before...but the challenge at scrappy hours was just that. so i made a large 6x10ish card with my favorite chili recipe. it came from parade magazine years ago. i love this chili because it's yummy and healthy comfort food...and if you're counting points or whatever, it's practically a zero, you can eat just about all you want. i found clip art of the various veggies and printed everything out on translucent paper, then layered and embellished. this card will tuck into my other cookbooks nicely, and i won't have to hunt around for a tattered little clipping anymore!

angel card

the november challenge at christmas cards all year 'round was to make a card with 2 snowflakes, 2 ribbons and 2 buttons. i always recycle the christmas cards i receive. a few special ones i save of course, but all the rest never get thrown out, they get cut up and reused. i even have a couple friends who pass along their old christmas cards that they have read, displayed and enjoyed, but are done with. this angel came from an old card....i rarely need to buy any holiday papers or embellishments anymore, i have more than enough recycled cards to make new cards for my whole christmas list!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

birds of the world

two challenge blogs had bird themes this week...daring cardmakers and theme thursday.

at first i thought i might do a christmas-themed bird, but then i got an email from a woman named carli in australia - she does papercrafting and she told me about her postage stamp holiday gift tags.

it was amazing timing, i had just been looking at this box in my closet, filled with my childhood postage stamp collection, and wondering what i was ever going to do with this box of stamps i've been carting around for 30-some-odd years. carli gave me the perfect inspiration...and i thank her!

i sifted through and found several stamps with bird images, from different parts of the world. i framed them up and added some ribbon with a metal flower buckle. a cute little bird house!

Monday, November 17, 2008

never toss a wool sweater

even if it is too small or has a hole in it. my friend glenna kindly offered me a lovely sweater of her husband's that had two such characteristics. it was made of a very nice brown wool, so she thought i could needlefelt something on it. well i do appreciate and respect the whole repurpose-reuse-recycle movement, so i accepted the challenge and decided to make a pillow for my mom. i trimmed away the sleeves and such, and found a flower and vine design in a dover clip art book that i liked. i changed the flowers to fuchsias because she has them in her backyard, and started punching the design into the wool with roving, yarns and felt. i anchored a few bits down with some embroidery stitches. the large fuchsia actually covered the aforementioned hole. i stuffed it and stitched it up and voila, a perfectly fine piece of wool found a good home.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

radical biker chick

my next effort at 4x6 postcard art for this week's sunday postcard art challenge...the theme was hats. suffice to say i was in a goofy mood.

perhaps i should explain...this picture of me was from a reunion weekend with several of my dear high-school friends. our dependably hilarious becky brought a box full of wigs and sunglasses for us to play with (never mind that we are all 40-somethings). the reunion was brought about to reconnect with one friend, julie, who we had lost track of for about 20 years. so we all donned our disguises and sat in the hotel lobby gabbing up a fake storm to surprise julie when she walked in...great fun! then we forced the most glamorous pink wig upon her head for our group shot. i took the goofy route with my get-up, instead of the glam - and gave my best gummy smile for the camera when we took our close-ups.

these goggle-glasses remind me of what an old-fashioned motorcyclist might have worn, and they also look like fly eyes. I am so NOT into motorcycles, so i added that bit of irony to my collage.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

my mother went to venice

over at the sunday postcard art blog, this week's challenge was to create a 4x6" postcard about italy. my mother went to venice and snapped this beautiful photo of one of the canals. she used a panoramic angle, so the pic is actually much taller than what i cropped for this postcard. she wrote a story about her trip "lost in venice" on her blog.

on to translucent paper i printed a gondolier cartoon from the internet (who'da thunk that would come up in a search). i translated a few words into italian online, then added the little accents.

i'm looking forward to seeing what their challenge will be tomorrow! meanwhile, this little ditty is destined for mom's fridge...

Friday, November 14, 2008

carnival issue 2 ••••• holiday

i'm thrilled to have made it to issue 2 - my carnival is actually plural now! alas, i did not get any article submissions* - but fret not, i have done my homework and this issue promises to bring you some terrific ideas for holiday papercrafts - from me and from blogland.

this first holiday card is so adorable, i just want to scream. i taught this project as a class a couple years ago at a scrapbook show and it went over really well. it's made with a little 3x3 blank board book - it is a combo christmas card and tree ornament. you can see all the interior pages here on my flickr page, and if you would like the complete project instructions, just email me and I will be glad to give them to you.


so these next two holiday cards involve a little more than paper, but i promise you it's so easy to learn. if you've never tried needlefelting, now is the perfect time. you can get supplies from your local craft or knitting store.  i started with a small rectangle of wool felt. i drew my holly and circle shapes on other pieces of felt and cut them out. then you just start punching away into your mat and the little felt fibers start to lock together. when the piece is all flat like this, you can use a multi-needle punch instead of a single needle.  i recommend the clover brand for tools, and here's a link to a great how-to book for beginners.

once the felt pieces are all locked together, poke some decorative brads through and then mount it on to the front of a blank piece of cardstock with thick glue dots.   


and on we go to some great links....

•  the design team at our creative corner put together some adorable holiday cupcake cards for their latest challenge, using a martha stewart cupcake picture as inspiration.  if you love cupcakes, you'll really love clicking on all the comment links from this blog's readers...see what i did for the challenge here on my flickr page.

•  at christmas cards all year round, there is a great pocket card project, perfect for tucking a gift certificate inside. they also show you how to make a little treat holder and a sweet little gift box.

•  over where the daring cardmakers live, their latest challenge is about birds - and several of the featured designs have a christmas theme. this little tag is my favorite - imagine making all 12, how cute!

•  i found this tutorial at dozi design for how to make a spiral paper rose - perfect to embellish a gift, an ornament, or even a napkin ring on your holiday table.

•  and last, but far from least - you can learn how to make a stunning 3-d paper snowflake at the wikihow site.  there are lots of other christmas projects there too!


that's a wrap folks, thanks for reading and clicking - i hope you found something wonderful to make for your friends and family this holiday season.

issue 3 will be posted on friday night, november 28. the theme will be 3-dimensional projects. show us how you use paper to create 3-d art, gifts, storage, decor  and more!    

* if you did submit something for issue 2 and i missed it, please send it again and i will edit the issue to include you!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

sweet patootie

holy moly, these challenges are addictive! so over at a spoonful of sugar, their challenge this week was a child's card. so I made a 3-panel accordion-fold card for a mother to give to her young daughter (i have a friend in mind) that says "you are my sweet patootie." this blog requires a rubber stamp image, which i don't do much with, but i found a cute little flower stamp so i'm playing along properly. i used giant fuzzy chipboard letters, inked the edges, used scraps of pale blue and yellow papers, added some cloth flowers and crystals...and a child's card was born.

friendship card

boy, these blog challenges are really fun! so over at this year-round christmas card blog, the challenge was a card that used pink and green colors, 2 flowers, and polka dots. i was able to work with all scraps, i didn't cut into any new paper for this one. it's accented with a couple cute brads, some ribbon and little rhinestones. now i'm still new to this blog challenge stuff, so i'm not sure if the card was also supposed to have a christmas theme, but i figured friendship works all year 'round.

and now for something completely different

over at mixed media monday, they posted a challenge to make a mixed media piece with a "body parts" theme. I decided to go with a torso, nude of course. i needlefelted two colors of wool roving on to a piece of 8" square wool felt, and tapped in some metallic fibers at the end for a little sparkle. then i used a bronze metallic dimensional paint to draw the triangle designs all around her...for my first attempt at needlefelting a nude, i rather like it! the sparkle and the shape of the triangles make me think of an empowered female.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

call for entries: issue #2

it's a blog carnival shout out! the next issue of papercrafting with lisa will be posted here on November 14th. the theme will be holiday - i'm looking for your fun handmade holiday cards, gifts, wrapping and scrapping to share. email me your stories, pics, links, blog posts - i will confirm your submissions and i look forward to a craft jam-packed holiday issue!

Monday, November 10, 2008

autumn leaves challenge

i'm finding lots of fun cardmaking challenge blogs, which is great motivation and inspiration. over at scrappy hours, they posted a challenge for using leaves in some way. so this weekend i made two series of leaf-themed cards - three traditional and three modern. one of each is shown here - the rest can be seen on my flickr page. i used thinner papers for the foundations this time, including some translucents. it was nice to not be limited to cardstock - as long as the embellishments aren't too heavy, i think the thinner papers feel nice, different. i also tried to incorporate more metal accents - bronze and gold colored buttons, eyelets, tags and brads. for all six cards, I worked with four autumn-ish papers and two translucents, then used a couple accent scraps and some embellishments from my gift box studio book.

Friday, November 07, 2008

the little book of paul

last christmas i made a small 6x6 blank board book for my mom, full of pics of my brother, paul. i love making small themed photo albums with board books. i inked all the edges first, then chose coordinating striped and woven patterned background papers to adhere to each page, with solid papers tiled together to frame each picture. no captions, lettering or embellishments - just a variety of pictures that celebrate home, in halloween costumes, on vacations, at special olympics events...paul has down syndrome—he is 39 and he really enjoys his life!

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

carnival issue 1 ••••• scrappy cards

so here we are, the first issue of my own blog carnival!

i was interested in a theme about scrappy cards...i'm a firm believer in saving all my paper and fabric scraps. i enjoy the challenge of trying to piece together a card from a random pile of stuff...and i also need to reign in that spontaneous joy of buying as much as my eyes can see when i walk into a craft store.

so in this issue, you'll see a new scrappy card i just made and i'll point out a few others from one of my earlier posts. i also want to share with you some fun from other craft bloggers who submitted their posts to me, and some other blogs that i have found along the way that i hope you'll enjoy.


the first step in making a scrappy card is a "dump and jump". you dump your scrap drawer out on to the table to see what jumps out at you. i decided on a thank-you card with some fall colors and a scrolly design.

then while using my wonderful black kuretake zig pen to outline the rust strip of paper (after it was already glued in place of course), i went outside the lines (omg!) so i had to turn it into a hand-drawn pattern that parades across. i drew more little dotted outlines around the floral swirls and the green panel to make it all look intentional. that's another technique i depend on frequently...turn mistakes into design challenges. i can't bear to toss something i started without at least trying to save it.

a few other scrappy cards i've put together are here.


now for a drum roll please....
here are the creative submissions i received.
many thanks to you for sharing...keep those cards and letters coming!

• annette at craft stew created a beautiful greeting card with vintage clip art that she hand-painted and accented with fibers - love it!

• at keiki gifts (from hawaii!) you can check out her wide assortment of friendship chips, really cute chipboard collectibles for kids that you can buy from her etsy or learn to make yourself.

• fiona from the crafty writer conducted a candid interview with joanna campbell slan, a scrapbooking how-to expert who has written a mystery novel about a about joanna's experience developing her story in this new "craft cozy" genre of fiction writing.


i discovered a blog called elf-creations, written by a craft teacher in scotland. she just posted a fantastic 4x4 art card for a design challenge at this really cool site, mixed media monday. before you read her post, look at the picture...can you spot her mistake that she turned into a design element? i couldn't!

another fun blog i found is stash, stash and more stash. sarah is a cardmaker and papercrafter who shares her adorable projects and is trying to make a respectable dent in her "stash mountain." check out these super cute christmas cards!


well, that's a sure to come back here for issue 2 on november 14th....i'm hosting a craft jam with friends at my house this saturday and i'll be working on my own christmas cards. so since it's time to dust off the christmas list and decide who all to send holiday greetings to... i think issue 2 will be a holiday theme!

calling all papercrafters with holiday projects they'd like to, gifts, decor...let's see it!

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

check out this blog carnival!

very exciting - my recent anniversary board book post is one of several posts featured in a blog carnival called "make it from scratch"  (a carnival is like an e-zine for blogs) - check it out here, and here too!  
the host of this week's edition is a blog called "a bit of flour" - she writes about cooking and baking. this carnival has been running weekly editions on a variety of host sites since feb '07. it was started by a woman in west virginia with a popular blog called "stop the ride" - she writes about ways to live more simply and frugally. 

my new "papercrafting with lisa" carnival debuts tomorrow night - i have already received some great submissions from other papercrafters in the blogosphere, and am working on a few of my own.  i think this carnival concept is a great way for blog writers to come together and get to know each other - and it's a great way for blog readers to discover new ideas, inspiration and resources.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

more block pendants

these are so easy to make, and while some may not consider them to be wearable - they'd be perfect for kids, or as party favors or holiday ornaments.

start with 1.5" blank board blocks, and decide if you want to cover the sides with papers and adhesive, stickers, paint, or even stenciled shapes with an ink pad (nothing wrong with white space). i especially like the small colorbox cat's eye ink pads, because of their size and shape. before covering or inking, use a japanese screw punch to make small holes in the center of the top and bottom. these blocks are hollow inside, but there are two layers of board material to get through. if you don't have this tool, poke a small x in the center with an exacto blade. if you plan to cover the top and bottom with paper or stickers, adhere those first, then poke through it with the wire. feed a couple beads on to a 4-5" length of stiff beading wire or a headpin for the top of your pendant, then force the wire through the hole in one end of the block and out the other. add a couple more beads for the bottom of your pendant. use small beading pliers to twist the end(s) into loops. brush all the edges of the block with a rubber stamp pad, then embellish the block however you wish. add the desired length of ribbon or cord for hanging. check out my earlier post for a glittery heart pendant!