Thursday, December 31, 2009

debby's dare

this post is for my new pals over at dare to dream - we had fun chatting online tonight and we all brought in the new year together...well, for the east coast anyway.

above is a board book i did this past summer, using my favorite quote by picasso, "art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life." this quote really sums up my whole 2009!

so i offered up this dare to everyone who was on the new year's eve chat: use your favorite quote or excerpt from a poem in a scrapbook layout, a card, an atc, or any other type of art or craft. post a pic of your piece on your own page at dare to dream by midnight 1/3/10, then leave a comment here to let me know it's posted.

i will draw a winner at random from all entries posted. the prize is a blank canvas book and a jar of liquitex acrylic paint!

i hope whatever quote you choose inspires you for the new year!

thanks so much to my friend
debby lewis, who has quite a fun crafty network going on over there - check it out!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

mulberry & lutradur

this is a blank board shadow box that i collaged and painted, then stashed xmas goodies inside for my mother.

first i spritzed it inside and out with a combination of burgundy and gold spraywash paints. once it was dry, i collaged the lid with 3 colors of torn mulberry tissue and painted strips of lutradur, sealed with matte gel medium. i love how the mulberry tissue colors just melt and blend together with the medium.
i added a domino i painted with alcohol inks to the lid as an embellishment, and lined the sides with a black paint marker. inside i added bits of mandala transfers.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

don't fence me in

i started this little 13"x20" quilt on a tuesday night while hanging out with my "twisted thimble" quilting group. i pulled some fabric scraps from our community swap pile and just started snipping out flowers and shapes as we chatted. i eventually saw a fenceline with flowers and shrubs emerge from the fabric pieces.

i pinned it all down the way i liked on some polka dot fabric, brought it home, and there it sat for a few months. then a few weeks ago i machine-stitched all the pieces in place, like raw-edge appliqué. finally today i finished it - yay!

i used a piece of upholstery fabric on the back, and flipped the nicely fringed selvage edge over to bind the top edge. i trimmed the other edge of the backer fabric with my wavy-edged rotary cutter and flipped it to the front to bind the bottom edge. i stayed loose with the machine quilting...the streaks and squares on the top remind me of farmhouses and grasses in the distance. the freeform wavy lines at the bottom look like the ground beneath my little fence.
i opted not to bind the sides...i like how leaving it "frameless" makes the fenceline seem like it might keep on going. i just did a zigzag stitch along the sides. plus i'm all about making shortcuts look like intentional design!

Saturday, December 26, 2009

time for a new look

just freshening up the blog a bit for the new year.

here is my very shy sock bunny that i made in craft camp at work. he is shy because from the front, he looks like a penguin. somehow i managed to morph two different species together with this argyle sock!

this project comes from a super cute new book coming out from c&t in the spring - socks appeal.

Monday, December 21, 2009

one world, one heart

it's that time again....the 4th annual "one world, one heart" blog tour starts on january 25!

i participated with over 900 other bloggers last year...this tour is a terrific way to meet other bloggers from around the world, find new inspiration for just about any creative endeavor you can think of, and maybe even win a prize!

click here to find out how you can participate as a blogger and/or enjoy the tour as a blog reader. now to think about what my give-away will be...

Friday, December 11, 2009

running amuck with canvas books

An attempt at graffiti art...includes spray wash, acrylic, paint marker, and black sand texture gel medium.

Spray wash and stamping.

Spray wash, stenciling and stamping, with a veined gold leaf accent.

Acrylic inks and paints, and stamping.

Spray wash and acrylic paint, then accented with a gold leafing pen.

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

a few more canvas books

i think what i like best about painting on blank canvas books is the joy of experimenting. it's a great surface to try lots of different techniques and mediums. sometimes i gesso it first, but usually i paint on the raw canvas.

for this cover above, i used spray washes in browns and golds, then traced a mask of the hinges and keyhole with a micron pen. after it was dry, i slathered on some gloss gel medium and pressed a texture into it with a large rubber stamp.

this one is colored with permapaque markers. i combined a circle template set with a square template set and was happy with how they overlapped.

I drew the apple and the letters with permapaque markers, and the banana with copic markers. then i painted pouring medium on top to give the fruit a nice hard gloss. canvas books are great for making soft children's books!

i used a copper spray wash for this background, with paper flowers masked out. my green chalk ink stamp pad was the perfect shape to easily press leaves, then i colored the flower centers with oil pastels.

Sunday, December 06, 2009


i just finished these covers for a set of painted 6" square blank board books to give to C&T sales reps to show art supply stores. i mixed acrylic paint with glazing medium for a glossy textured base coat, then layered on more paint, metallic spray ink and texture mediums.

it was a great testament to the stability of the board book surface, and it was really fun to experiment with varying levels of opacity versus transparency, shine versus texture. i also loved the effects i got by applying paint with my fingers, and by thinning the paint with water to create drips.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

more art journal ideas

for both these canvas book covers, i gesso'ed them first, then used inktense watercolor pencils to draw my circles and shade them with a wet brush. on "rolling along," i added lines with a glue pen and silver embossing powder. on "awareness," i added white and tan embossing powder, plus a little accent of crackle medium on each circle. i wrote my words with paint markers.

these will go to c&t's sales rep group that calls on art supply stores around the country, to use as models to help sell the canvas books.

(but you can also buy canvas books from me directly for 25% off retail!)

Saturday, November 28, 2009

art journaling

i'm making some projects for work; models to show off our art surfaces.

this is a
blank canvas book — the cover and one inside spread. i painted it with acrylic inks, acrylic paints, color washes and paint markers. the raw canvas allows for any type of painting, from crisp stamps and stencils to the blurry bleeds of inks and washes.
i painted randomly, then chose a word that each image made me feel. now i need to knock out 6 more books!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

waste paint atc's

i try to never waste a lick of paint. any little bits leftover get dabbed on to blank atc stock that i always have at the ready.

i end up with really cool backgrounds for future atc's this way. i often use little round sponge dabbers which hold a lot of paint...i can usually paint a whole background with just the extra that has soaked into the sponge. i get these cool circles when i press the dabber down firmly. btw, the face inchies in the "laugh" atc is courtesy of my crafty pal, lisa m.

i also save all the scrap papers that i test paints, pastels, pencils and markers on, they make great backgrounds this stripey oil pastelle on vellum behind the cherry blossom stamp. just tryin' to keep the operations green, folks! :-)

Sunday, November 22, 2009

the deliciousness that is ranger

i just got my first ranger order in, so i gave myself a challenge...create a card using a bit of each product!
made with resist ink, utee, grungeboard, distress crackle paint, glossy accents, crackle accents, 7 different alcohol ink colors, filmstrip ribbon, washers, hitch fasteners, hinge clip....phew!! Have fun making one yourself with my free project instructions!

you can purchase any and all of this goodness from my website at 25% off retail...and i always include a free giftie with every order!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

cardmaking madness

on the second sunday of each month, i am hosting a cardmaking madness day...and today was the first! several friends came over and we had the die-cut machine humming, stamps inking, and paper trimming.

here are a few of the cute cards they made today...

and here is the aftermath - we got out all the toys!!!
i was demo-ing alcohol inks on translucent paper and made a slate-color marbley background. then after the ladies left, i checked out a new challenge blog that posts creative prompts. the current prompt is the word "core." the blog host listed several "core" things and phrases, including andromeda's core.

i realized my slate background looked like the the night sky, so i added some different swirls and colors in the center to create my own take on "core."

Thursday, November 12, 2009

image collage

this was a fun collage experiment on a 12x12" piece of cardstock, combining stamping, spray masks, heat embossing, pouring medium and angelina fibers. the only boo-boo i made is fusing the angelina fibers to the paper after having already done some heat embossing. my iron smudged some of the images a bit.

here's a close-up of the fibers fused on to the sheet with bo-nash 007 bonding powder.

Monday, November 09, 2009

new digs for my blog!

i changed the site address for this blog..."la femme papier" bids you all a sweet adieu.

now my blog address is http:/, which matches my website address.

i hope y'all found me and updated your bookmarks! thanks for keeping li'l ol' me on your bloggin' radar...

Saturday, November 07, 2009

atc club!

there were just three of us today, but we yacked and painted and had some nice quality time!

here are a few of the fruits of our watercoloring labor...regena blended yellow, orange and violet into a cool streaky background. connie stamped a delicate pastel butterfly card, after allowing the water to make drips and patterns. my atc took on a psychedelic twist as i played with swirls of color.

good times!

Thursday, November 05, 2009

watercolor backgrounds

this saturday is atc club; we'll be working with watercolor - regular and shimmer. above are three different backgrounds i painted, and below is how i finished them off with some stamping and embellishing.
i also painted some mini-atc's (1.5x2.5) with no extra embellishing - birds flying in a cloudy sky, a tri-color landscape and a geometric pattern. these will make nice panels on greeting cards.
i used luminarte and lefranc & bourgeois brands - they're both wonderful watercolors! and strathmore makes watercolor paper in packets of atc size, very handy!

Wednesday, November 04, 2009


i sent out my first e-newsletter this week - yay! i hope all you subscribers enjoy it.

i issued a challenge to anyone who'd like to join in the fun - it's a blind collaboration. i will collect virtual feathers from everyone, join them together into a beautiful peacock, and post the image for everyone. this is one i drew with aqua promarkers.

1. create a feather in whatever colors, style, medium you want. paint, draw, collage, stamp, sew, sculpt...and it can be any kind of feather, not just a peacock's.

2. take a good, clear picture of your work, against a white background.

3. email your pic to me by 11/8/09 and i will assemble it for viewing next week. (

it's really cool to see everyone's creations, and it's rather liberating to make something without any rules, without knowing exactly how it will all come together with everyone else's.

i also drew two prize winners from the first 100 subscribers...they were cindy derosier and jessica germain...both happen to be fiskateers by the way! those ladies are some lucky duckies! i put together a lovely prize package for each of them that includes a blank canvas book, some papers, embellies, fabri-tac, and liquitex acrylic inks.

hope y'all are having a great week!

Sunday, November 01, 2009

new weekly e-newsletter

next week i'm starting a new free weekly e-newsletter called "a little art, a little craft..." that will be full of terrific project ideas, profiles of cool artists and crafters, how-to tutorials, special offers, contest,'s gonna be fun!

the first 50 to sign up for my newsletter (over there on the right) get their names in a fabulous prize drawing - a blank canvas book, some liquitex ink, and some assorted embellishments - you're gonna love it!

Friday, October 30, 2009

handpainted atc papers

these are 2.5"x3.5"sheets of translucent paper that i have painted with alcohol inks. they'll make wonderful backgrounds for atc's!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

leaves of color

here's a cute little nature drawing i did using carbothello chalk-pastel pencils. i love these pencils - such brilliant color!

exquisite corpse

wow, this was such a cool project!

my favorite paint manufacturer, liquitex, posted a challenge on their facebook page. they wanted 6 artists to create an exquisite corpse. we were each assigned a body part to create in whatever style and medium we want. we email a pic of our piece to liquitex and then they will assemble our work into one collaborative "corpse" to share with all their fans.

i was told to make a left arm and hand. i decided to make it creepy looking for halloween, since i have not yet developed the skills to make a realistic looking appendage!

i sketched an outline of my own left arm and hand resting on the table in front of me. then i painted it with iridescent gold, silver, and copper acrylic paints, accented with a pearlescent violet. it really shimmers in the light!

i tiled it on two separate sheets because i want to incorporate it into a mixed media piece later.

i can't wait to see what the other 5 artists come up with!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

inspiration board

i felt like making a quick inspiration board for myself tonight. i wanted to reinforce the feelings i have about being an artist, a crafter, a creative do-er.
i began with a 5"x7" accordion blank board book, and i spritzed color wash sprays over each panel, letting two colors drip and blend. then i pulled out my scrap drawer and glue stick and started adding bits of collage papers and hand-painted papers and fabric.
i allowed myself to work quickly, i put this together in under an hour. it's very liberating and also good practice to make something without thinking too much.

i included a sticker of a picasso painting i really love, as well as my favorite quote of his:
"art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life"

lastly i added some "power words" to each panel:
• don't wait until everything i can be now
• just try
• create and feel art
• live my life well
• do what i love to do!

i hope you try making an inspiration board too, it feels good! many thanks to lorraine, one of my talented friends who inspires me every day...she gave me a few of the collage papers.

a special birthday

today is the birthday of my very special friend, kari. i love how the colors of the card i made for her go together, strong yet serene...they reflect who she is to me.

Monday, October 19, 2009

urban landscape

this is a larger piece i just finished, 14"x20". it came about quite by accident...each section was a separate experiment with different materials and techniques. then i realized that each section had something in common, in that they felt industrial and architectural. i saw bricks, stucco, metal, glass, tiles, even roads and bridges. i found this thick black corrugated paper in my stash that reminded me of asphalt, which became a perfect background for my urban landscape.
above are strips of lutradur and translucent paper, folded or curled and glued to a backer, then spritzed with various colors of paint. below are woven strips of painted lutradur.
i stamped the dot pattern on gesso-painted cardboard, applied sand-textured medium on top, then distressed it with ink.
i painted a green acrylic square (scraps you can buy at the tap plastic store) with alcohol inks, and adhered a metal disc that was once an earring.
a friend at work gave me a bag of scrap plastic bits in all sorts of metallic colors, which i used to make a little mosaic.
i cut a tree and leaves out of lutradur, painted them, then etched them with the stencil tip of my heat tool.
i really liked stacking the sections like building blocks, and i like the contrast of the geometric shapes on the right with the more organic shapes on the left. thanks for having a look!