Posts Tagged ‘somerset life’

I mentioned quite a while ago that I had started working on a memo board like those by Amber Demien in the April/May/June 2010 issue of Somerset Life. Well I’ve had it finished for some time now but I just never got around to sharing it. So here it is….

homemade memo board

And a closer view….

homemade memo board

I started with a canvas (12″ by 16″ I think) and painted it a light blue color (after first painting it in variously-colored stripes, which turned out awful!). I wanted a blue, brown, and cream color palette, so I chose the ribbons accordingly. I used a staple gun to staple the ribbons to the underside of the canvas (first time using a staple gun!). Et voila!

I bought mini clothespins at AC Moore to attach notes to the ribbons. Now I just need to make some pretty little papers that I can write all my important notes on!

Have a great day!


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So my third soldering attempt is way better than the first two.

soldering attempt 3

Pretty good, just a few lumps and bumps that need to be filed smooth (and who doesn’t have a few lumps and bumps that need fixing?).

I’m still not quite there with the adding a bead of solder – I have a hard time getting a thick layer on there. And I’m still having issues with the jump rings; I just can’t seem to get them on securely. But practice, practice, practice, and I’m sure it will come.

I thought my soldering skills were decent enough to work on an actual project – how exciting! Here it is…

kooky & meticulous

kooky & meticulous

Not too bad. I will not add the jump rings however until I practice some more and can do it well.

Another project I have been working on is a “Beribboned Bulletin Board”, from the April/May/June issue of Somerset Life, by Amber Demien…

by amber demien

Isn’t that so pretty? I really wish I would have looked at the picture again before I started mine, instead of relying on my memory. Whatever was I thinking!

Here’s mine so far…

memo board project

Ummm, I’m not loving it. The colors are way too bright. Ugh. The only thing to do is throw more paint on top of it and see what happens.

Thanks for stopping by!


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halloween in july
I have exciting news…my vintage Halloween Party Sacks, which were featured in volume three of Somerset Holidays & Celebrations, will be included in an upcoming issue of Handcrafted magazine! The issue is due out in July. What a lovely surprise!

then by all means draw
I’ve had a strange urge recently to draw. Strange because I have no drawing abilities. I’ve never considered myself gifted in that area. But I have felt unusually inspired by Somerset Studio lately – all of the lovely & intriguing painting and drawing contained in its pages. And some of that artwork – the artwork that is simpler and childlike – I look at and think, I could do that. So I’d like to try my hand at it.

To that end I have purchased a ridiculous quantity of supplies – water-soluble colored pencils, regular colored pencils, graphite pencils, drawing pencils, pastels, and four (four!) books of paper. I’d like to get some watercolors too.

drawing stuff

Thank goodness I can get these supplies at AC Moore, with their weekly 40% off coupon!

I am keeping this quote from Vincent Van Gogh in mind: “If you hear a voice within you say “you cannot paint,” then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced.”

victorian glam
I finished my glammed-up paper bags and mailed them off to Somerset Life. I think they turned out very nicely, but I am a little concerned that they are too simple in design. I needed to decorate them though in a way that was quick and easy. I like them, anyway. I call them my Victorian-Glam Paper Lunch Bags.

victorian-glam paper bag

victorian-glam paperbag

victorian-glam paperbag

They are simple to make: generously spray the bag with Tattered Angels Glimmer Mist (it’s hard to see this in the photos, but believe me, those bags are glimmering!), stamp all over a bunch of times with different colors of ink, and apply self-adhesive jewels. Easy!

Thanks for stopping by!


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just a little word.
I finished the cards I was working on, the ones I was originally going to submit to Somerset Studio for their “simple pleasures” theme, but then ran out of time to finish them. I’m very happy with how they turned out. I’m calling them my “encouragement cards” – pretty little cards to give a word of love, hope, and encouragement to someone.

encouragement cards

I’m going to make organza bags to put them in. I envision these cards as little gifts – throw a chocolate or perhaps a small trinket in the bag, too, and voila! I’m not quite sure if they fit in with the Somerset Life style, but I’m going to give it a try. I’d like to sell these on my Etsy shop (whenever I get it up and running again!). They’re pretty simple to make, but turn out so lovely. The flowers are circles of scrapbook papers, dry-brushed with gesso, then cumpled up and unfolded, layered on top of each other, and fastened with a brad. The cards are about six inches by almost three inches, and have Tattered Angels Glimmer Mist on them. The backs are pretty scrapbook paper.

I think the world could use a little more encouragement.

what inspires you?
Artbeads is currently accepting submissions for their “What inspires you?” beading contest. There are two categories – beaded necklaces and other beaded items. The contest is open up through November 22, and then on November 23 the voting will be opened to the public. Basic guidelines – you need to submit two photos, one of your work and one of the inspiration; you need to write a short paragraph about your creation; and half of the supplies must come from Artbeads.

Good luck!


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new ideas
I actually got an idea for another digitally-altered book the other day. This is the first digital art idea that has come naturally, as opposed to my being forced to come up with an idea for an Artella contest. I’m taking this as a sign that this digital art stuff is taking root.

Anyway, the idea is to use (again) my beloved vintage photos of women and pair them with lines from Tori songs – similar to my Sweetie Darling book I did recently. Tori has so many great lines I could easily do 10 books, but we’ll keep it to one for now.

And since I attended the second part of Artella’s Polished and Professional Pixel Papers class, I will attempt to create my own background “papers” (but I’ll still use a book for the foundation).

The class was a few weeks ago – it was so interesting and instructive. It’s so incredibly helpful to be able to watch someone do stuff in Photoshop. Now I know about drop shadows and using layer styles, and just those two things can add so much to one’s digital art.

So that’s my idea. Now to find the time to do it…..

the beautiful life
Lookie what I have….the new issue of Somerset Life.

somerset life

It’s beautiful, as always, and, as always, I want to jump into the pages and live there. I’m sure I’d be quite happy! I’m reminded of an episode of AbFab, where Eddie mentions that she is opening a shop. Patsy asks what she’s going to sell, and Eddie replies, “oh, just gorgeous little things!” (hopefully my memory is serving me well here.) That’s what Somerset Life is – a collection of just gorgeous little things, to inspire “authentic and creative living”. Who doesn’t want that? Sounds like the perfect life to me.


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thanksgiving part 2
mashed potatoes anyone?

Julian’s plate, before…

…and after.

Gwen, cute as a cranberry!

mmm, chocolate.

ah, summer
A little late here but I loved the July/August/September issue of Somerset Life. My favorites were: the embellished vintage cookie cutters by Becky Shander – so sweet! The repurposed wooden clothespins-as-magnets by Molly Quoyser were cute, with their nautical theme. The artist used her mother’s old nautical charts which I thought was a wonderful way to incorporate something meaningful into an everyday object. The dolled-up martini glasses by various artists – I would love to make some myself. A beautiful birthday book by Kristen Robinson. Oh-so-lovely & unique “placecards” by Heather Bullard. The beautiful vintage compacts turned into messages of love by Linda Warlyn. Gorgeous gift tags by Angela Harris.

I could simply jump into the pages and live happily ever after. What a gorgeous and inspiring magazine!

~vintage sparkles in my dreams~

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a pumpkin adventure

Last autumn in Somerset Life was an article by Carla Buchanan about her designer pumpkins – pumpkins that she had painted in a “way cool, shabby-chic” fashion, to borrow her words. I made a note in my calendar book for September 2009 – “consider designer painted pumpkins as in Somerset Life”. That way I would be sure to remember.

Miss Buchanan’s pretty painted pumpkin.
Painted pumpkin by Carla Buchanan

So dutifully last weekend I purchased two small pumpkins (from Wegman’s, alas, not a local pumpkin patch. But I figure they’re good enough). I haven’t painted them yet. I’m a little nervous, since I’ve never done anything like that before. I’m afraid I’ll mess them up! Plus I need to get some paints.

And I need to get more pumpkins, too, because my husband and son want to paint some as well.

So my pumpkin adventure has begun!

and a birthday card
Here’s a little birthday card I pretty much threw together for my mom. I think it turned out cute, n’est-ce pas?

Birthday Card, 2009

Birthday card, 2009

~sweet dreams~

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