Thursday, March 22, 2018

Rain and Shine in Yellow - Shabby Chic Collage Card

Here's a spring shabby chic collage card to brighten up your day!
I started off with inspiration from

I appreciate the daffodil yellow focal of this inspiration picture.
I intend to do another interpretation if other design work doesn't interfere, but here's the first.

With a cutout from a magazine of the yellow boots
(and let me tell you I sure miss my sunshine yellow Wellies this year...dry rot is an awful thing! :(
the card came together bit by bit to make a cheerful friendship card that says visually, 
"No matter what, we'll choose joy!"

More challenges:

I used the boots, umbrella and the recycled dryer sheet (cheap mulberry paper substitute...and it smells nice! WIN ;) for a sort of "cloud" effect.

Sadly, this is also the last challenge from Deep Ocean Challenges, which I have enjoyed playing along with in the past and filled a Guest DT spot for a few years ago.
The last challenge theme is Easter/Spring and I want to wish all the DT the very best.
Challenges come and go, I think mostly because we all have busy and stressful lives going on behind the scenes, but the great thing about our community is that we stay open to each other and there's always something new to bring back after each step back for self-care.  I do wish all the DT a happy Easter and many beautiful days ahead, rain or shine.

I also left the sentiment space blank on this card so that I can tailor it for just the right moment.

Thank you for visiting and I hope you will enjoy the sunshine--
but also get out your puddlestomping boots, ready to fully enjoy Spring 
(when she finally, truly and ACTUALLY arrives!)
Robin asked me about puddlestomping last week and said he missed it; I said,
Well, I think we need to find some new boots then, don't we? :)

And we did.  So now you know where I'll be after the next not-too-cold rainstorm:
having a great time outside with some happy kids, that's where.

 Be well, --Kathryn

Saturday, March 17, 2018

Mightier than Many Waters - Mixed Media

This mixed media project became much more than a creative unwind tonight, because it was inspired by the prompt for the current WordArt Wednesday #326 and #327.

The verse for this challenge is Psalm 93:4, and it says "The Lord on high is mightier than the noise of many waters; yea, than the mighty waves of the sea".

I love reading the devotions that accompany this challenge and the way that, while we do something as meditative as crafting and keeping our hands busy, Karen gives us something so much bigger and so much more purposeful to think about so that the creativity can actually bring us closer to God and more in tune with His will for our lives.  I am grateful for this.

I actually painted a couple of canvases of the open ocean last Sunday, but I'll share those at another time and tonight, since I already had the gray and white paint out, I started thinking about not just the waves but the whitecaps and the seafoam.  Mighty waters churn up a lot of it.

When I saw a bit of lemon bag netting I had laying around to recycle for craft use I started thinking about fishing nets and Jesus calling his disciples to follow Him.
Then I saw a little pebble and thought about Peter and the rock of personal revelation and testimony, upon which Jesus said He would build His church.  Next I decided to add some sparkling large glitter in a few places, like the scales of the fish which He prepared as supper for His disciples by the seashore, and of which the Lord said, "Lovest thou me more than these?"

I was out of scripture sentiments that were ready-to-go, so instead I found a generic sentiment that nonetheless I think does apply--especially the "Do more than is required, Care more than you have to."
How different the world would be if we would be more concerned about our own self-discipline and true kindness to others, instead of just trying to act "nice" in order to win passing approval.

This project also plays in the following challenges:

Cardz 4 Galz: Beach of Nautical - (sea foam, fishing nets and fish scales)

Thank you so much for visiting and may your day be blessed,
however and whenever this finds you.

Be well, and seek out the sunshine!

Friday, March 16, 2018

Mythology, The Hobbit, Tolkien and--Ah yes, a Mixed Media Project...

I just discovered, delightfully, a BOOK-THEMED challenge and let me tell you, it's brilliant.
And that's not just because I worked in a library and the challenge host happens to have picked one my favorite authors for the current challenge...

Well, okay, it helped a little. :)
But if you love reading at all or at least enjoy a very cleverly organized challenge, 
head on over to

Now don't even get me started guys, because I'm one of THOSE Tolkien fans... 
I've read the Silmarillion more times than I can count and I dare anyone to test my Tolkien lore.  
I can even tell you about the Sindarin number system and just FYI, it's not base ten.
No no, it's far more beautifully complex and Milton would have loved it.

But I want to move beyond the epic storytelling and esoteric details for just a moment.  
Tolkien is a genius, not only of language, but of character.  
He understands the archetypes that move us.  He lived the stories he wrote, and harnessed raw storytelling energy to transform the events he felt and witnessed into something artful.  
In his scholarly essays he was not afraid to stand for and defend what he believed in.  
His deceptively naive-sounding essay "On Fairy Stories" is well worth the read 
just to be rewarded by his powerful insights in the last two or three pages.  I will not spoil it.  

If you THINK you love Tolkien but have only read The Hobbit (and it's not a bad place to start at all) or if you just watched the movies, do yourself a favor and dig deeper.  
Try "The Monsters and the Critics," a well-edited collection of his essays, 
or just taste the grand sweeping tone of the "Ainulindale," the first part of the Silmarillion.  
And my friend if you do, please let's talk. ;)

Here are some detail views:

Hand-crocheted "rope":

Burlap, moss, roses, stem pearls and wooden leaves detail:

The thick paper base is my own handmade paper, which I crafted in large batches some years ago from scraps produced in my work for my Etsy shop. 
After making as much as I felt I could possibly use, I began composting the rest of the scraps and turned them into vegetables.  Ha!  How is that for using up every last bit? :D


Get Creative Challenges #67 - Fantasy/Mythological
Simply Create Too #136 Use Green - 2nd entry
Creative Artiste #36 - Anything Goes - 2nd entry
Deep Ocean Challenge #176 - Vintage / Shabby Chic
Everybody Art #421 - Anything Goes

Vintage Journey March Theme: Treasure

So in case you haven't read the book...Why treasure?

It just wouldn't be a Hobbit-inspired project, of course, without GOLD.
Just enough gold though, and no more.

I wanted to focus more on Bilbo's ability to still see beauty in simple, natural things.
And this, to me, is a sort of treasure of the soul as well.
It was this ability that allowed him to get through his adventure,
even as frightened and homesick as he was. 
It was that ability that allowed him to withstand the Ring for as long as he did.

Yes, I could have dome a whimsical project on bacon and eggs and the missing handkerchief.
I sincerely hope someone has! :)
But I chose to focus on the simple beauties of his journey,
especially the dark-colored butterflies above the treetops of Mirkwood.

And like Bilbo, I hope we will also climb up once in awhile to look over the Mirkwood that is sometimes our own day-to-day life when we just can't see a way out.
I hope we will climb up for a different view, and while there that we can enjoy the glorious sunshine
and the fleeting joys that lift the soul like butterflies.

Be well all!

Monday, March 12, 2018

March Mixed Media Canvas - Lily of the Valley and Butterfly

Before the little Harrier came along nearly two years ago, Sunday afternoon tradition almost always found Robin, Jay and myself in the sunroom painting, writing stories together, sewing or making cards.  Since then we've fallen out of practice in the course of raising a toddler hurricane, moving and reestablishing.  This afternoon was the first time we've pulled out the paints in I don't even remember how long, and let me tell you--it felt wonderful.

There are certainly times when I'd rather just craft on my own,
but usually it's such great time with the boys that I don't mind the extra mess or even a few wasted materials... although I did have to make Jay start buying his own stickers for the most part awhile back...

So as out of practice as I am, this is one of the four canvases I completed today.  Robin and Jay were THRILLED to see Mom getting fingers so messy.  They're solidly out of the finger-painting stage, so seeing me dive in and get inky-fingered really made them laugh.
And just spending the time together made my afternoon.

Some more close up views:

Entering into the following challenges:

More Mixed Media Challenge - Open Theme and Optional Green

My Time to Craft Challenge UK - Spring / Easter theme

Thank you for visiting, and wherever you are,

Be well and enjoy the sunshine!



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