Sunday, February 26, 2012

More Lettering Loving, a fun Breakfast and a Gripe....

It has been a sunny weekend here in Southern New York State. Very windy yesterday and chilly, in the 30's both days, but the sun just streams into my craft room which has big windows and doors facing the south and west. When I work at the desk that faces the windows on days like this I have to wear my sunglasses and baseball cap OR close the blinds. Since I love the warmth of the sun and the view, I look like I should be in the stands cheering on my favorite team rather than stamping and coloring.


I worked a lot on my Loving Journal- the book the class has created out of sheets of watercolor and bristol paper. We had to paint, ink, and faux texturize our papers on both sides and soon we will be handwriting our best lettering into the book like icing on the cake.
Love this page, distress ink & a stamp.

I also practiced my handwriting over and over again with different pens. I really like several. Elegant Writier (www,, Faber Castell's Pitt artist pens, Stampin' Up!'s Stampin' Write, Copic Ciao and Sketch and Multiliner pens are all on the top of my list for various lettering jobs and styles.

Using my SU background stamps.
Feel like I am back in St. Pat's elementary.
Love this fountain pen.
The cover of my book.
The 29th is the last formal day of this class. I will miss the assignments. I can't rave enough about the workshop. The price was right, I was able to work at my own pace. Joanne Sharpe gave us challenges; however, none of them were beyond a beginner and if you you didn't have the recommended supplies, if you read the directions carefully, you could substitute with the supplies you had. No fancy lettering pens... grab the Sharpies you use to write the kids' names on the lunch bags. No fancy note books, rip some pages out of the kids' old composition books. The idea was just to letter in all different shapes, sizes and directions on top of colored pages. And she gave us permission, what fun.

I got to see other participants' work on Flickr and we blogged together on Yahoo. Best part, the class videos and PDFs are available forever. I can go back and review. Great stuff.


Our daughter, Heather, the writer, called early this morning and asked us to breakfast. To IHOP. Gary answered the phone- he was up before I was- and Heather spelled the restaurant name. DJ was of course hanging around her (she was on the phone after all) and before the letters were out of her mouth, DJ was shouting, "We're going to IHOP." 7 years old and he knows everything.

Breakfast was delicious. We shared green eggs and ham, chicken florentine crepes, smokehouse something, an ice cream cone with a pancake stuck inside and blueberries on top, pancakes with yogurt and sprinkles. Luckily there were 5 hungry people at our table.


So, here is my gripe. I ordered a few things from Company S on Feb. 6th. The few things included some Memory Box dies that I thought I might use for Valentine cards and an extra pan for my Ranger Melting Pot (Gary wants to try melting some old pieces of candle). Company A notified the Post Office on Feb. 8th about the package. The Post Office registered it on Feb. 9th. I got one of those- you can follow your package routing things online. The next time I see any info on my package, it was in Atlanta, GA on the 16th. Where did it go between the 9th and the 16th? I live in NY state, the package was coming from Ohio. Why did it go to Atlanta? Vacation, Spa treatment? The next thing I know it was in Memphis on the 23rd. Is it walking home to me? Of course I notify Company S and they were very nice but they don't know why my package was singing the blues in Memphis.

I finally got the package on Saturday, the 25th. The wrapping was intact- I thought maybe it was rerouted to GA because it was damaged- nope, the package had its original labeling on it.

When I opened it, I was missing the extra pan for the Melting Pot. It was back ordered which it didn't say on the original confirmation form from Company S. I understand, these things happen between when you order and they pack. A little note inside the package said there would be about a one week delay and they would ship my pan out to me as soon as it was restocked.

I wrote to Company S and said since package #1 was traveling for 16 days, shouldn't package #2 be here already????? Maybe package #2 went to CA to visit my son and daughter-in-law before it comes here. I don't even have a confirmation # so I can't watch the package on its journey.

Now you may wonder why I am making such a detailed fuss over this. I normally shop with
www.oozak. com, located in Michigan. If you order from Rusty before 3 o'clock- he sends out your package priority mail and you get it in 2 days. I order on Tuesday and the box is waiting in the mailbox on Thursday. Every time! Like clockwork- and you only have to buy $50.00 worth to qualify for free shipping. He is the best. I found Rusty's company when I started to buy Copic markers. Really good prices. So, every other month or so, I would order $50.00 worth of markers. And then I noticed he had Memento inks and Annie's Attic books. And then he started to carry Tim Holtz products and I was lost.... Did I mention he has excellent prices AND he is putting more and more products in his store.

Which brings me to Memory Box Dies. If Rusty had had the dies (he is getting them in sometime in March), I would have ordered from him. Silly woman, I didn't do any Valentine cards after all so I could have waited.

The moral  of the story... You can't always get what you want, but if you wait sometimes, you can get what you need from Rusty... to paraphrase the Rolling Stones.

Beautiful Memory Box Dies.

Thanks for stopping by and hope your weekend was CREATIVE.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Loving my Letters in Progress...

New and old products I am using.
Look, Ma, I'm creating letter art. And coloring and doodling.
Watercolor & Bristol paper I've colored.

The cover of my lettering practice book.

My first page trying out all my black markers.

Writing the word "ART"

twenty different ways. DJ, my grandson, made up a few .

I can leave stuff black &white

Or color backgrounds & doodles.

Lettering in my grid book.
Bubble letters are hard for me.
Loving the graph paper.
In progress, using the papers I've colored.
I am so enjoying this class. I originally thought it would be useful for my scrap book journaling. Now after 23 days of the class, I realize my handwriting has improved, I've renewed my long lost love of fountain pens, I've started to use calligraphy markers that have been sitting gathering dust AND I have a reason to spray color on big sheets of bristol and watercolor paper. Not to mention doodling- I'm loving it.

I will need to practice long after the class is done, but I now have Art Journals to house all those bits and pieces of poems and sayings that I have collected for ages.

Joanne Sharpe has opened up a whole new ART outlet for me. I'm sure I'll be sharing samples as time goes on.

Thanks for stopping by,  Suz

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

My Letter Art Class...

I have been having such a "learning to fly" time with this on-line class.

I am very precise with my work. Hard for me to go out of the lines, let go. Harder and harder for me to break out and do messy stuff. Think it is a product of getting older.

Anyway, this class is about drawing big, swoopy letters, piling letters on top of letters, using thick and thin pens, writing off the edge of the paper. It is about creating background papers using paints and reinkers and sprays (that spray a different way than planned and now there is spray on the counter and Joanne (the instructor) tells me I should take another piece of paper and mop up the overspray to create another background). It involves using stuff I have had for months (years) and not had time to break out of the packaging and use (fear factor). She doesn't want me perfect- she wants me to make mistakes and then use them to make art.

Just writing this makes my blood pressure rise. Waste supplies just to fool around. EEEEEKKKKK!

It has been good for me. I have a purpose and a reason to get up every morning this month. 29 days of visits with Joanne Sharpe, either on video or photos, her cheerful voice telling me to try out all those pens, use bristol and water color paper, doodle (when did I lose my ability to doodle), color outside the lines- in fact there are no lines on what I am doing, draw lines after I color, (there are no stamped images that I need to do perfectly and cut out exactly). This is down right scary for me and I will have to practice this long after the classes end because it is so good for me.

The ultimate goal of the class is to show me how to do daily art journaling in notebooks that are colored and illustrated by my own hand. Some of my pent up stress is leaving with each broad free hand stroke that I put on paper. If I can't free myself of stress at work then at least I can lighten my load with markers, alcohol inks, fountain pens and colors all over the place.

Photos will come. I'm too busy swooping and flying. Thank you Joanne Sharpe for giving me another outlet.

And thank you for visiting and sharing some of my happiness.

Did I mention that I am taking a two week on line class with Tim Holtz in a month? Now that is happiness.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

The Giants won the Super Bowl. GO BIG BLUE!!!!!!!

A little change to the craft room....

Back of island looking toward windows.
 So, I am always tweaking my area, trying to get just a little more counter room, shelf room, storage room.

Just recently when Gary put the long counter together for me and I raised the island to standing height, I had some cubes that were only stacked 2 high under the counter. I was using the tops of the cubes to store stuff. The light bulb went off recently and I asked him to get me more shelving. The two shorter shelves created just perfect counters under the long one. Didn't even have to saw them to length.

Great for holding my Christmas gift from Gary- the Vagabond. I can run the die-cuts through from that shelf which is a good height. Also I  have my basket of heat guns, iron and glue gun there. I ran the cords up through the middle so I can use the tools on either side without having cords all over.
Front of island.

On the other side I have scrap paper, most used stamp pads, etc. So convenient.

Front again. Gave me about 71/2 more feet of counter.
Hope you enjoyed this peek at my craft room. Come back and visit again soon.

A Touch of Spring....

 Look at our little snowdrops. These are right outside my craft room windows and I love seeing them. We bought them in CT last Fall at White Flower Farm.

There are other bulbs coming up under them. Gives us something to watch for right here at the window.

One of our many groundhogs wandered out of its burrow and nibbled on some grass. It was so rumpled. I've heard that February is mating month for groundhogs. Let's hope they are blinded by sunlight or not particularly choosy about appearances, because this one wasn't winning any beauty contests.