Monday, September 10, 2018

Friday, March 11, 2016

Pocket Letters Galore

It's been a while since I updated!  I've been spending most of my times swapping Pocket Letters and ATCs with my new pals at Swap-Bot.

Here are some of my most recent swaps - please forgive the photo quality, those shiny folders are a bitch to photograph.

This one is my favorite by far:

Classic Monster

Here are some others:

Owl Pocket Letter


I'm also swapping ATCs, handmade postcards and I'm working on my collage skills.  What is up with that?!

If you'd like to swap, let me know.

Thanks for looking!

Monday, September 28, 2015

Pocket Letters

So I recently found a new craft - Pocket Letters!  You can check out the basics via the creator, Janette Lane, on her blog here.

I joined her Pocket Letter Pal network and agreed to my first Halloween themed swap.  I decided to go cute and went to town - I started with some Project Life Halloween cards that I had for unknown reasons since I don't actually scrapbook.  I was thinking I'd do ATCs but then I decided I wanted my swap partner to be to use the supplies on the front of the pockets as well as the back (I'm not sure if that's the intent, but I liked it).

Here's the front:

And here's the back:


In my first pocket, I did some ATC papers wrapped ribbon and added a handmade matchbook to the back.  The next pocket is my glitter/confetti pocket - I think I may have muddied this up a little to much with glitter.  It's sealed with washi, so I may redo it before I send it out.  My swap partner is momma to some fancy rat babes, so I made her a rat pocket with chipboard rats on the front that she can remove and some stickers, labels and a few tickets in back.


The second row has a spider charm, some black and orange rhinestones with spider and web die cuts and some hand-dyed crinkle ribbon and washi tape in the back.  I'll put my letter behind the card with the owl.  I'm not sure if I should add more the front pockets in this row?

The last row has my swap partner's initials, some more removable die cuts and a free floating bat.  Additional pumpkin and bat themed papers, ribbon and embellishments are tucked in back.  I made some really cute little file folders too.

I can't wait to get started on my next one - it's an owl theme!

I'm entering the above into the following challenges:
Hiding in My Craftroom - HMCR218 - Any Holiday (Halloween)
Corrosive Challenges - Halloween Bingo - Bat, Free Space, Moon  (CORROSIVE233)

Thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, March 21, 2015

HDH - The Naughty Corner

Of course my first post in a long while is for Haunted Design House; how could it not?

Their theme this month is The Naughty Corner: You can either make a naughty project, or a project about someone or something who's been misbehaving or create something with corners, or decorate the corners.

I went with naughty; well, actually, I went with the rewards that come with taking your punishment well.  So, unless I sorely misinterpreted naughty, please see below....

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Gargoyle Luminary

Howdy All! It's that time again - Gruesome Guardians is the theme this time over at Haunted Design House and you have to create a dark, Gothic or Hallowe'en based art piece using gargoyles, gryphons, dragons, leprechauns, fairies, etc.

I love gargoyles, so I had to go with them and after 3 other failed attempts, I have a beautiful antiquish luminary. 
I have some really cool gargoyle collage sheets on CD from Collage Stuff and I knew I wanted to use them on a transparency.  I dinked around until I had formed a box from a sheet of  plain black paper.  I ended up cutting the top with a fancy schmancy edging die and then using an embossing folder.  I went over the entire thing with some silver Brilliance Ink and buffed it with a towel to give it an antiquish look and then cut out the windows with a die. I added a different image to each window and sealed it up.  
Of course, I had to add my favorite burnt flower thingies that I can't stop making.  At some point I'm either going to set myself on fire or pass out from the burning polyester fumes.  LOL!  Too keep the candle hidden, I dropped a rolled tube of heavy weight white vellum inside. And ta-dah!!
Here's a fabulously blurry photo of it lit.  (Sorry, my dark photography skills are not up to par.)
 Here's a view of the other sides.  

I will also be entering this into the following blogs:

...Joyful Stamper - Inspire Me Fridays - Anything Goes
Hotshot Craft - Anything but a card!

Thanks for looking!

Saturday, February 2, 2013

HDH - Famous Last Words

I'm back.... I was actually back two weeks ago, I was just too scattered after the holidays to post.

Of course, I'm jumping right in with a new Macabre Monday from Haunted Design House.  This time we need to use a famous last line from a favourite book, poem, or movie.  Go even one better, and use a death bed confession or last utterance.

I decided on Emily Dickenson; her last spoken words were "I must go in, the fog is rising" which is kinda creepy.   I wasn't sure what to do, so I went with a memorial type photo that someone might have on their wall of a deceased loved one.

The frame was originally white, which I antiqued with some brown stain.  But then I dropped it and it broke. <sigh>  When I put it back together, you could see the seams, so I painted the entire thing matte black.  UGH.  Sadly, I didn't have anything to make it shiny again, so I rubbed an old chapstick all over it.  Gross but it works.  I added a little bit of gold burnish to the edges and the  flower, which I made with some extremely flammable material and a candle. Yay me for not burning down the house!  Done!  And.... wow, kinda boring. 

So, back to the drawing board.  I decided to go to my favorite movies for inspiration.  One of my Top 10 Things Chriss Loves to Watch Over & Over is The Omen.  Who doesn't enjoy a little antichrist now and then??  And inspiration struck - remember this little piece?  It's my scrapbook page of Damien - so I made another.  I may have to put together a book...

I love it! I used the Nanny's last line "It's all for you!" which she says right before she hangs herself as Damien's birthday present. 

I made the background in Word, using the prophecy that Bugenhagen recites and is used on one of the film posters, added the biblical quote, 666 and printed it on a lightly stamped background paper.   I love my graveyard die cut and the sparkly ribbon added just the right amount of fun for me. 

A friend saw it, said, "Oh, that's really pretty" and then "Wait, what the hell is going on?"  That's my favorite sort of creepy - the kind that slips in under the radar.

Enjoy and thanks for looking!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Spam Misery

So, unfortunately, I have received 147 spam emails in the past three days from my blog. Ugh! Do they really think I need that much Viagra??

Anyway, since I'm not sure how to stop it, I've turned on word verification - hopefully, I'll be able to turn it off in a week or so.  Does anyone have any tips on how to stop the massive spam attacks?

And, with that last forlorne note, I'm off for the Holidays - see you next year!


Sunday, October 28, 2012

HDH - Nosferatu

This week's challenge over at Haunted Design House is Nosferatu Ad nauseam - which means vampires!   I wasn't sure I would have time to play (I totally missed last week because, ugh, life is busy) but I remembered the creepy Nosferatu stamp that I picked up in Vegas and I had to play with it.

So, here's my tribute to the original blood-sucker:

I used watercolor pencils to color him a rather disgusting yellow/brown and then sponged red on top with plastic wrap.  Something I find disgusting is milky eyes - the best monsters have them, so I colored his eyes green and added glossy accents on top.  Yuck!

I'm going to enter this into a few different challenges this week:
Crafting for All Seasons - Spooky
Fussy and Fancy - Anything Goes
4 Crafty Chicks - Spooktacular
Tuesday Throwdown - Halloween

Thanks for looking!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

HDH - Bats, Bats, Bats!

Happy Weekend!  Of course, it's time for another Haunted Design House post.  This week, they've chosen Bats in the Belfry - anything to do with bats.  Which, if you know me at all, means that I'm over the moon!

This is how much I love bats: 
I spent a week in Cairns, Australia volunteering at a bat hospital. It was one of the best experiences of my life. I have bat jewelry, clothes, tattoos, decor - my friends all know I love them.
The worse part of this week's challenge is the fact that I couldn't really make anything creepy and I made a gazillion things because hey, bats!
So, without further ado: 
I love this card - the moon is embossed and the bats are actually pieces of confetti that I folded and glued to a hand-drawn line.   It was inspired by a stamp that has birds sitting on a wire.  I think this might be my Halloween card this year.

Below, I went with an embossed background and a simple die-cut 'BOO'.  I stacked some bats  to give a little bit of dimension and added a black pearl.  Simple but pretty.

These guys are ridiculous - I don't even know what I was thinking.
Below is my version of a sampler that I've seen on the internet in a gazillion places.  I'm not sure I like the color scheme; I may redo it in grey tones.  
And finally, here's a quick card that uses tiny little bat punches as a frame.  I planned on putting little pearls on all the bats, but I ran out, so I tried to improvise with gel pen.  Eh.
There are more, of course, but I think I'll pace myself. 
As always, thanks so much for looking!

Sunday, October 7, 2012

HDH - Release the Kracken...

I'm back from my travels - it was too hot in Vegas and way to cold in Alaska.  I prefer the dark moist climate of my studio for sure. 

I was extremely excited by this week's Haunted Design House challenge - Creepy Cryptids.   We needed to make something to do with a creature or plant whose existence has been suggested but is unrecognized by scientific consensus and often regarded as highly unlikely! Think Loch Ness Monster, Yeti, even Faeries.

Whoot! I love monsters!  So, of course, the first thing I did was a make a unicorn horn which isn't a monster or creepy, because obviously the two halves of my brain do not work well together.  So I moved to hypocamps - half horse/half fish.   Still not creepy, but I made a cool ATC. 

Most of my stamps aren't really monsters, so I went looking for images online.  The beauty below comes up when you google 'Kraken Coloring Pages' - the image is from Monsters by Mail and I love him. 


I colored him with pencils and used a marker to color the background black (semi-successfully now that I see it under the sunlight), made my own frame with die cut waves and accented it with some water droplet ribbon and a small rosette that I made (probably the hardest bit of this card - good lord, those folds were a pain!) and sentiment.  Green pearls were the final touch.   

Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, September 2, 2012

HDH Bad Moon Rising

Time for another Haunted Design House challenge.  This week it's "Bad Moon Rising".
You are to create a dark, Gothic, or Halloween-based art piece that depicts a BIG BAD MOON.  Make it full, waxing, waning or crescent. Just make it big and the main focus of your wonderfully wicked project.  Cute will get you in the door, but the Dungeon prefers things creepy and dark.

Well, I can definitely say that my moon is really big and is the main focus.   It's kinda light on the dark and creepy.

I started out with a template - hmm, the moon is boring, stars are way to big and owl is too small.  So, I used an embossing folder on the moon and highlighted the embossed bits with Pearlescent Yellow Brilliance, just to give it some dimension and then did a little dtp on the edge of the black card as well.  

Next, I ran some brown paper through my Big Shot with a wood grain impression plate and highlighted the entire thing with distress ink.  My adorable little punched owl stayed the same but I stamped him with some scratches and gave him some red eyes and ended up mounting both the tree and owl with foam tape.  The cemetery punch and broken fence at the bottom along with the tiny little silver stars rounded out my scene.  Ta-dah!

Sadly, this is most likely going to be it for me for the rest of the month - August was packed and now September is crazy - I have a bunch of work related travel!  Ugh. 

Thanks for looking and I'll see you in October!

Saturday, August 18, 2012

HDH Challenge or Dance, Percy, Dance

Hey there, I'm back from having fun in the summer sun for a few weeks (okay, fun in the dark movie theatre, because it's too damn hot outside!) and I'm ready to play.

This week's challenge over at Haunted Design House is Hiding in the Corners - something that is obviously adorned in the corners. 

I have a friend's birthday coming up and I know she's going to love this adorable Unicorn digi from Andrea over at Smudgetastic Digis.   I hand colored him (for my purposes, his name is Percy) with pencils and gave his horn and hooves a little glossy accent because Percy needs to look his best.    He also needed a little rump tattoo so I made him a moon and bat because my friends always expect at least one bat from me.  

Andrea also has some cool skulls (Skullie and Norman) - I fussy cut a dozen or so of these little beasts and made a little skull pile for Percy to stand on.

Dance, Percy, Dance!!  

I mounted Percy and a few skulls with foam tape to give them a little dimension. The unmounted sentiment "happy, happy, happy" goes with the "birthday" on the inside.  I decided to do something cheery on the corners and made little red polka dot ribbon banners.  (Ignore the odd ribbon shadow on the left, I couldn't get rid of it, no matter how I turned my project into the sun.)  Each layer is foam mounted - for a grand total of 5 layers.

I'm also entering Percy in the following challenges:
Make It Monday - Anything Goes
Paper Crafting Journey - Anything Goes
Paper Crafting Journey - Happy Birthday - Celebration
Papelitos Stamps - Celebration
Just Some Lines - Layer It Up
Whoopsie Daisy - Anything Goes

Thanks so much for looking!

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Challenge - Music Mayhem

Good Morning! It's time for Macabre Monday with Haunted Design House.  But first, there were some requests for the stamp maker of last week's image and I'm sorry, but I have no idea who it is.  It's an unmounted stamp, made of thin blue rubber.  If anyone knows, I will happily give credit.

No, on to the challenge - this week's theme is Music Mayhem and needs to use a song or song title as your muse. 

I immediately went to "Animal I Have Become" by Three Day's Grace.  The chorus is:

"So what if you can see the dark inside of me
No one will ever change this animal I have become
Help me believe it's not the real me
Somebody help me tame this animal I have become"

which totally screams Werewolf to me. 

I found an extremely cool werewolf photo on the web - my view of werewolves came from The Howling so they always look like this in my head - and this guy was so beautiful.  I thought about doing something ripped and tattered and torn, but I like the counterpoints of being human and in control vs. the wildness in being an werewolf and decided to go with something classy to offset the animal.

I don't have any good framing dies, so I made my own - I gathered some punched fleur de lis' and glued them upside down (sideways, bottom out?) to the back of my photo. 

The flowers were white and boring, so I splashed them with some black ink and added the leaves in the same color red as the card.  I printed out the line from the song (because for some reason, I thought it had to be on the card.  Apparently, I like to make up my own special rules for the challenges) and added it to the bottom of my pic. 

I used an embossing folder from Stampin' Up on the left and a die from Papertrey Ink for the cool cut out on the right.  It's one of my favs.  The leaves are from Sizzix.

I'm also entering this into the following challenges:
Joanna Sheen Challenge Blog - Animal Crackers (werewolves count, right?)
...Joyful Stamper - Anything Goes
Bloggers Challenge - Die Cuts
Divas by Design - Anything Goes
LEJ Designs Challenge Blog - Anything Goes
Simon Says Stamp & Show - No Rules!

Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Challenge - Butchered Blueprint

As always, the weekend brings us my Haunted Design House submission.  This week we're working from a Butchered Blueprint. 

I have to admit, this is my first time doing a blueprint and I set to work creating.  Surprisingly, it came together fairly quickly and wow, it was frightening and not in a good way.  Hubby looked at it and went 'huh'.  So, for future reference, when the person who loves you most in the world can't think of a single thing to say about your art, perhaps it's time to sleep on it.

And I did - and below is what I came up with. 

I rubber stamped my broken doll (unmounted blue rubber) with Memento and colored it with pencils - ugh, brown and blue is the atrocious color combo on the jacket.  I mounted him on a bit of doily that I had thrown away because it didn't go through the die machine correctly.  Some felt, embroidery floss and a few more buttons and I was set.  

The final step was the stick pin in the heart.  Sad little thing. 

As a bonus for sticking with me this long - here's a close up of the best part of my first attempt - I made the 'blood drop' on the pin with embossing powder.  So cool!

Thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, July 7, 2012

HDH - Vile Vintage (see warning!)

Wow, I'm clocking in an entire day early over at Haunted Design House for the latest Monday Macabre - Vile Vintage - take something vile and make it appear vintage, or maybe use something vintage that would be considered vile! 

So, the only thing I could think of that was vile and vintage were post-mortem portraits which, for those innocent souls who follow me, are photos taken of loved ones once they've passed on.  (Please note this warning - there are photos of dead children below.)

I tried to keep everything Victorian era'ish.  I started with a plain brown slide mailer and gave it a quick black wash, then stamped a Victorian pattern using Brilliance ink to give it some background texture and then wrapped it in some beautiful grey satin ribbon.  The flower was made with hand-dyed loose petals from Michael's - they melt and curl nicely when you use a match.  I backed a pre-made frame with some flocked paper and a cross charm, which I added the stone to. 

Here's the inside:

The pictures don't actually belong together, but it seemed serendipitous when I found two different photos with twins.  I framed the photo on the left with black scrap and used it across the bottom on the right along with a small cross between the babies.  I accidentally broke one of the slides with my tea cup, but decided it added to feel of the piece and broke the other one as well. 

It's not really vile to me, but I'm sure someone is horrified on my behalf, so I hope that counts. 

Thanks for looking!

Sunday, July 1, 2012

StRaNgE bReW Challenge

This week's challenge over at Haunted Design House is StRaNgE bReW - making something with a recipe. 

Begin with 2 layers (actual card counts as one layer)
Add 1 main image panel
Mix in some metal bits of your choosing
Add some drops of black pearls
Gently fold in 1 punched element
Tie up nicely with some ribbon or trim
Here's my entry:

For my main image, I used my favorite digi, little baby Medusa, hand colored in reds, browns and yellows with pencils (I did her in green before, I'm trying to decide what I like better...) and gel pens.  I gotta say, there is nothing like the harsh camera shot to show you where your coloring still needs work!  Any suggestions out there for some good tutorials?

I fussy cut her and put her on my two layers of paper - one card stock and other a patterned scrap I found in my closet.  My metal bit is a ribbon buckle with some hand dyed ribbon to match her tail and 10 pairs of eyes - how many pairs before it's eyeses??  :) 

Add a punched border at the bottom, lined with black pearls and something you can't see, a matching bit of patterned paper on the inside of the card to show through the punched border.  Ta-dah! All done. 

I am also entering this into the following challanges (because apparently I am the queen of Anything Goes):
Love to Create Challenge Blog - Anything Goes
Fat Pages and Cards with Attitude - Anything Goes
Tammy's Scrapin Corner - Anything Goes with Any Artist
The Paper Makeup Stamps Blog - Anything Goes
Party Time Tuesday's Challenge Blog - Anything Goes

Sunday, June 17, 2012

HDH137 - Perplexing Pigment Play

I'm slipping in under the wire (seriously, less than 30 minutes left!) at my favorite spooky blog - Haunted Design House for this week's challenge - Perplexing Pigment Play.  Your piece has to use black, teal, purple and lime green.  It's being sponsored by Bugaboo Digi Stamps and so I purchased an adorable little image to use - Deacon Skull Flower.

Oddly, teal is not a naturally occurring color in my craft room and I have no idea why.  After scouring for almost an hour, I finally found a fabulous little piece of embossed paper in the right color.  I added a green velvet ribbon that I ran through a skull embossing folder and some purple paper.

I used colored pencils to give Deacon a nice lime green zombie color and gave his eyes a little blood ring.  I think zombies give the best skull flowers. Some teal hair and tadah!

A handmade flower that I dyed black and embellished with a green skull from Creepy Glowbugg completed the look.

I'm also going to submit this over at:
Smudger Challenge Blog - Skulls
Forever Night Challenges - Anything Goes
Poisoned Peas - Goth or Emo (I'm pretty sure zombie boys will skull flowers count!)
Fat Pages and Cards with Attitude - Anything Goes
Stamping with the Dragon - Anything Goes

Thanks for looking!

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Smudger Challenge - Tag

Back in April, I won my first (and only so far) blog candy from Smudger Challenge Blog.  It was a huge bounty of dark goodies and my inner 12 year old girl squealed.

I was also excited to start doing challenges on a blog from the very beginning so I promptly missed the first challenge deadline because I'm an immense dork.  

But this month, I'm slipping in under the wire.  Challenge #2 is You're It!  (Tags)

I took a manila tag and stamped some Gothic Latin writing on one side and heavily spritzed it with Walnut Ink that has been doctored with Platinum All Purpose Ink.

Tip:  As a great alternative to buying expensive glimmer mists, add an entire bottle of metallic All Purpose Ink (API) to a bottle of Walnut Ink (WI) and shake vigorously.  Tsukineko makes both products and they're really easy to find in most craft stores.  Keep in mind that API is a fabric ink, so you may not find it with stamping products.   

Just make sure that when you add the API to your Walnut Ink, you also dump in the mixing ball that's in the API bottle.  Otherwise, your metallic ink will settle on the bottom of the WI and won't mix as well.  You'll need to give the combo a good shake every time you use it but you get gorgeous shimmery results.   I really like the Cherry Blossom Walnut Ink with Vegas Gold API.

I added some rice paper to one side of my tag and covered the transition between sides with a flourish die cut from a post card.  I felt I needed more sparkle, so I fussy cut a transparency butterfly and coated the underside with blue glitter glue.  I made a smaller embellishment tag and added a tiny little bling and a bit of the glitter glue.  Matching ribbons finished it off. 

Thanks for looking!

Friend Good ATC

I decided I wanted to play with a Dilly Beans Stamps image this week, so I picked the adorable little guy below.  I'm totally into bats so he's perfect. 

I originally colored him with pencil, but decided to go back over parts of it with gel pen, which you may or may not be able to see better below. 

Orange and blue paper with a circle punch created the background.  I love how insanity inducing bright it is.

Since the Dilly Beans Challenge this week is Friendship, I used a label maker to create the Frankenstein quote "friend good".

I'm entering this into the below challenges:
Dilly Beans Challenge - Friendship
Ladybug's Crafts Ink TLT Challenge - Something with Wings
ATC's with Attitude - #14 Anything Goes
Crazy Amigo Challenge - Orange

Thanks for looking!

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Challenges - My Favorite Vampire

I'm sure everyone knows what time it is - indulging my Macabre Monday needs at Haunted Design House

This week, it's Long in the Tooth - something with chompers, teeth, fangs, dentures, etc.

I went with my favorite toothy fiend - Dracula.  It's not that other vampires aren't fabulous, it's just that he stole my heart when I was a young and impressionable child.   I was 11 when Frank Langella began his starring roll in my feverish dreams of marriage and love and whatever it is that happens when you're all grown up and in love with a vampyre.
The fact that dying was a necessity didn't seem like such a bad thing.  Oh, and that he would kill my best friend, family, betrothed? Blah, blah, blah.  He was going to love me FOREVER!  Also, he had awesome fashion sense with that cape and puffy shirt.  What can i say - I was 11. 

I used Versamark to clear emboss the coffins on the card base, then stamped the mouths with Pearlescent Poppy (Brilliance) - sorry all the stamps I used are clear and unmounted.  Then I had to outline them with a drippy blood border - I seriously need to step away from this punch.

I wasn't sure what to do with the Son of Dracul, he's so small, so I gave him a little pop with some glitter flecked tulle I found in a drawer and a crepe paper rosette.   Of course, I want all his kisses so that's the sentiment I used.

I'm also entering this into a few new challenge blogs - yikes, I'm expanding my horizons!

Penny's Paper-Crafty Challenge Blog - Anything Goes
Charisma Cardz Challenges - No Flowers Allowed
Fat Pages and Cards with Attitude - Anything Goes
Stamps & Fun - Anything Goes
Old Back Porch - 52 Card Pickup
Anything Goes Challenge Blog - Black w/One Other Color

As always, thanks for stopping by and indulging my Macabre spirit!