Thursday, April 24, 2014

Garden Birdhouse

Today I want to share with you a birdhouse I made for my Mom for Mother's Day.  She has a collection of birdhouses and I hope she likes the one I made for her.  I used a plain dark brown wooden birdhouse I found at a grocery store.  It was on a clearance rack outside on their patio and I envisioned a beautiful little garden house when I saw it.  I painted it with Martha Stewart multi-surface satin paint in Scallion and used sand paper to "weather" the wood after it dried.  I wanted it to look distressed and worn.  I added some miniature pieces like a wheelbarrow, pots and a metal bicycle.  I used several Cheery Lynn Designs dies, a Spellbinder's die, I Am Roses flowers along with other fun accessories to create this garden birdhouse.

I created a trellis along the side of the birdhouse with Tim Holtz Alterations Trellis Die cut out of grunge board and used Cheery Lynn Designs Ivy Corner Flourish  and Ivy Strip woven throughout the trellis.  I painted the trellis with distress paint and distressed the edges with distress ink then sanded it to give it a worn look.  The window box was created using Cheery Lynn's Victorian Picket Fence die that I cut down a bit to size for a window.  I filled it with moss and flowers over Spellbinder's Windows Two.  I removed the decorative piece at the top of the window for a more farmhouse type look.

 Here you can see a close up of the window box.

I created a topiary tree using a miniature pot filled with moss, a wooden dowel for the stem of the tree and formed a small ball using Crayola's White Model Magic.  I couldn't find a small enough styrofoam ball and the model magic worked perfectly because I could create just the right size I needed for the tree.  The model magic was wonderful to work with because it is so pliable before it dries and doesn't crumble like styrofoam. I covered the model magic with I Am Roses mini roses in hues of purple and pink. 

Using miniatures added character to the birdhouse.  I filled the wheelbarrow with a bouquet of fresh cut flowers tied with a bow.  The miniature pots were painted with Tim Holtz Distress Paint and then sanded to give it a worn look.  I filled the pots with moss and I Am Roses rose buds.

I also added more miniatures, the metal "Bloom" sign was painted with Tim Holtz Distress Paint in Spun Sugar and then sanded.  I added moss and more I Am Roses flowers to the bucket and wove the rose buds up the sign post.  In the other bucket I added miniature garden tools which I fell in love with when I saw them at the store.  The butterfly was created using Tim Holtz Alterations Butterfly Frenzy.  This is a great die because you can create several butterflies with one die in several different shapes and sizes which can be layered.

On this side of the birdhouse I used Cheery Lynn's Shuttered Window with Flower Box but on this side I did not create a flower box.  I wove some burlap string through the shutters and added a tiny shirt and a pair of pants that look as though they are blowing in the wind on the clothesline.  The squirrel was created using Cheery Lynn's Birch Tree with Cute Critters.  More I Am Roses flowers were added with moss.  The bicycle is a another miniature I found with an adorable basket attached over the handle bars that I filled with moss and flowers.  I painted the bike using Tim Holtz Distress Paints.

Below is a close up of the bicycle and lower side of the birdhouse.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Enjoy Your Trip

It's been a long time dream to complete my intermediate Copic markers class.  Coloring as a child brought such joy to me and as an adult I find I still love the art.  Instead of using crayons and crayola markers I've advanced to Copic markers.  These are markers on a good way.  The capabilities are endless and while I'm still taking little baby steps with these markers, I hope that with hours and hours of practice I will be able to fine tune my skills.

This card was made for a dear niece of mine who is going on a summer long journey to Italy.  She's beautiful, intelligent and quite frankly, brave.  She's one of the bravest young ladies I know and has faced adversities that would make most of us crumble to the ground incapable of ever getting up again.  She's a hero to me and I wish her all the best that life can possibly offer.  I will be thinking of her while she's traveling through Italy and remember the wonderful time I had when I was there in my early 30's.  It's an amazingly beautiful country with so much richness, beauty and heritage but hey, I'm a little biased being that I'm Italian and was spoon fed story after story about this amazing place.

I used Tiddly Inks image "Gonna Miss You" after having found this image on a blog called "Ms Petunias", a beautiful blog by Carolyn LaBille.  I loved the colors she used and while I still need all the help I can get, I actually used the same colors, or nearly the same colors, as she did in coloring this image.  I know in time I will be brave enough to venture out on my own, choosing my own colors and putting them together but I hope that she doesn't mind that I completely hijacked her color scheme for this image.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Friends in the Garden of Life

Friends come and go, so they say.  Some are only meant to be there for a short while for whatever reason.   Some put a mark on your heart that stays there forever and even when you don't see them very often you find yourself thinking about them all the time.  My friend, Phyllis is one such friend.  We worked together at a marketing and accounting firm back in the late 80's, early 90's.  We laughed, cried and could talk about anything.  I wanted to make something special for her birthday.  I'm finally satisfied with the end result and I hope she likes her belated birthday gift.

Products used to make this canvas:

Blue Fern Studio - Bohemian Butterflies
Graphic 45 - Staples - Metal Butterflies
Cheery Lynn Designs - Turkish Lace Doily
Cheery Lynn Designs - Fanciful Flourish
Cheery Lynn Designs - Gardenia Strip
Cheery Lynn Designs - Shasta Daisy
Prima - Tea Thyme - Charms & Tiles

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