Friday, March 16, 2018

Little portraits

I've always loved to snip little portraits. 

So when I was cutting a friend's children out I couldn't resist the extra fun of 
adding their silhouettes to this tiny Spellbinders shadow box. 

The die that cuts the box is super fast and easy and comes with all the tiny flowers shown.
I had so much fun cutting them out in England last June, sheep grazing beside me as my little scissors snipped out the little wildflowers. And now they're available as a crafting die to cut lickety split.

Outside the studio windows the garden is coming to life and daffodils are blooming down the road. Springtime!

It feels like the perfect time to make fun little things like these tiny boxes with portraits tucked alongside the flowers.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Blog hop - Make a Child's Art Purse

One of the pleasures of being an artist is having the most imaginative friends. 
And one of mine is Tammy Tutterow, who designed this sweet die produced by Spellbinders Paper Arts, the company who makes my crafting dies, too. (And yippee, you can order my new Flower Garden collection here- it's shipping out, too!)

Today I'm sharing a blog hop to celebrate Tammy's new spring die collection.

I couldn't resist using it to make a child's art supply purse. It was fast and easy, simply cutting out the pieces from felt and arranging them to please me. I cut extra pieces for a gusset on the sides and bottom and stitched it all up on my little Singer Featherweight sewing machine.

Layering bits over top of bits, embellishing with whimsical embroidery just because it's fun...

I stitched little pockets into the middle to hold stickers, glue stick, and other crafty goodies to delight my favorite four year old. On the back I added little pockets for crayons and markers and decorated with ribbon and more embroidered felt flowers.

I filled it with coloring sheets, stickers and glue sticks, glitter glue, washi tape and markers.

I think my sweet little friend will love this.

Wouldn't you love to win a $25 gift certificate to spend on Spellbinders' crafting dies? It's easy!
Just leave a comment for me here by Sunday, March 18. I'll announce the winner Monday morning.
Fingers crossed it's YOU!!!

For more Spellbinders die cutting crafty fun, hop over here to read the next blog in the hop or here for all the posts on Spellbinders Paper Arts blog.

Saturday, February 17, 2018

A drumroll for the winner!

Drumroll, please!!!

The winner of the Spellbinders Blog Hop giveaway this month is Bee Jay!

Bee Jay, please contact me or Spellbinders right away. Please email by 02/18/18 with the subject line Spellbinders February 2018 Blog Hop winner from Sharyn Sowell's blog.

Congratulations, Bee Jay!

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Living valentine

Last year Mr. Wonderful and I took a romantic trip to England. And you know I had scissors and paper in my pocket!

The Flower Garden collection is about to ship, and we're celebrating with a blog hop today...

so I thought I'd give you the inside scoop and show you a valentine made from some of the dies.

The Cotswolds are like the best old storybooks come to life.
Endlessly inspirational.

And it was so much fun to bring those flowers to life as hand cut paper, then watch Spellbinders turn them into crafting dies for paper, fabric and more.

I used the bird topiary die and the swallow and heart die from Spellbinders Joyous Celebrations collection for the birds and florals and lettered a bit with a dip pen and liquid watercolor.

Crafting dies make it easy to reproduce the hand cut paper and make romantic pieces of your own...
Maybe wedding or valentine or party decorations, cards or felted crafts...

Ready to hop to my friend Debi Adams' blog? Click here!

Thursday, February 1, 2018

Time for Swedish fika (and scissors!)

Winter is my favorite time to cosy up and create. There's a lot of sipping and snacking involved these days. My grandma, a beautiful Swedish artist with a gift for baking called this "fika."

Long quiet hours with the soft sound of scissors snipping and rain beating on the window panes are the hallmark of the winter months. Tiny bits of black paper pepper the floor and half-finished work covers every surface. 

But that's not all. 

I celebrate the joy of winter by snuggling in with paper and scissors and endless cups of tea... 
and that's been about all I've wanted to do for months.

True to my Scandinavian roots, candles and that most delightful of all Swedish rituals, fika is a daily must. We stop for coffee or tea and a snack of muffins or fruit or crackers and cheese every afternoon... because this is how we turn the long dark days of a wet northern winter into the season of comfortable delight.

Spring is just around the corner, friends. But for now, pour yourself a cup of something delicious and get the creative mojo flowing. 
Celebrate winter the Scandinavian way!


Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Cottage gardens and crafting dies

Last June I visited England's cottage gardens. It was like falling into a storybook! Those gardens and my own little patch of green inspired a collection of flower garden crafting dies from Spellbinders Paper Arts. They'll be in stores soon and today I can finally share a little peek at a few of the products and a project you can make yourself.

Like almost all my cut paper, these crafting dies are very intricately detailed. They let you turn a crank and produce something that took me a lot longer to cut!

There's going to be a wedding in the family and the planning is underway. We've begun with a Save the Date card but you could make one for a baby announcement or birthday card, or as a special frame. For a full tutorial you can go to the Spellbinders blog here.

This group of creative crafting dies is full of flowers and other joys we find in our gardens: butterflies, birds, berries, dragonflies... 

I'll be sharing more peeks very soon. You can find these dies beginning in March at the Spellbinders website or at a store near you. If you have a favorite local store, just ask if they'll be carrying the Flower Garden collection this spring and summer.

More peeks soon... 

For now we're saving the date for a special wedding here and planning invitations, party goods and favors made from this group of easy to use crafting dies.

(And don't tell anyone but they make those handmade party goods fast as can be even though it looks like we spent hours!)

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Creative gift wrapping in a jiffy

It's officially "the last minute," that scurry around time when the  house smells like cookies and pie.

Time to wrap gifts, and FAST! But it must look splendid.

Nothing just jammed into a bag if I can possibly help it.

This is the simplest kind of crafting. Wrap your gifts in kraft paper (in a pinch, use old grocery or lunch bags!) 

Using dies from my Sharyn Sowell Holiday 2017 dies from Spellbinders Paper Arts, cut out some paper die cuts and use a glue stick to adhere them to the package.

Using a white Sharpie, a white UniBall Signo pen or a splash of white gouache, add some dots for snowflakes and a name. Tie with a pretty red bow and tuck a sprig of greens under the ribbon if you like.

Merry Christmas, everyone!

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Creative neighbors

"Come over," said Pearl, "we're going to be in the greenhouse making wreaths."

So of course I did! What a gift to be part of a creative community of women like these. 
Each of us working at different kinds of art forms, each gifted in her own way, living with style and imagination.

When these friends invite, you drop everything and run over. It's just too much fun not to!

Gathering material from their family garden, Pearl and Kate make several hundred wreaths every year, selling them in the local food CoOp and at their own farm stand.

They make little bouquets that they assemble into wreaths.

When the girls get thirsty, they can reach for the tea kettle; when they feel like a tune, they can flip on some merry music.

These dear friends love me and I love them. We get together to make things, to celebrate the occasions in our lives large and small. We laugh together, cry together, teach one another how to knit or prune or bake macarons. 

I am so grateful to share the beauty of the seasons of earth and life with these wonderful women who are as beautiful inside as they are outwardly.