Friday, April 29, 2016

Art Journals/Sketch Books - and Decorating the Cover

I've had a sketch book for as long as I can remember. It isn't an art journal as in today's definition but my books are a type of journal in that it shows a  timeline of my life. My drawings depict how I was feeling and thinking at that particular period. Looking at the pictures always sends me down memory lane.

art journals/ sketch books
So a couple of years ago I bought an art journal/sketch book for my granddaughter and I love flipping through it with her and talking about her pictures. I can see an evolution in her work as her ability and techniques change.

I only wish I had it sooner and had a few of her earlier works. Unfortunately those are no where to be found. That's one of the great things about her art journal.

For the most part  Faith's drawings are neatly contained in one compact place - not loose papers all over the house getting wrinkled, torn or lost. Not that she only draws in her book. She normally reserves her art journal for times she wants to put extra effort into making a masterpiece.

I like to try to date each page not only in her book but in mine too. It definitely helps put an order to it all.

Depending on how creative we are feeling, we can go through a sketch book in a few weeks or a few months. Either way it can get costly. 

I looked around and found the Pro-Art Canson 9-Inch by 12-Inch Universal Sketch Book, 100-Sheet. You can get this for under twenty dollars. The only difference between this one and my sketch books are the covers. This sketch book has a cardboard back and paper front. Otherwise it is exactly the same.

If you don't mind spending more you could get the Alpha Wirebound Sketchbook 9X12.

Art JournalsThis sketch book is fantastic. The back and front are hard cover which is really handy. You can put it on your lap to sketch on the go and not be tied down to a table.

They have a spiral binding making it easy to open right up and lay flat. 

I like the 65 lb paper. It's acid free and each page is microperforated so it's easy to take a page out and not rip up your masterpiece.

The cover is plain black which can be both a blessing and a flaw. Trying to tell the difference between books is nearly impossible without picking each one up and looking inside.Then I had a light bulb moment . Dah! decorate the covers. Brilliant!

So that's what my granddaughter and I did. We gathered a few supplies that we had around the house like stickers, foam cutouts, markers, gel pens, washi tape, and nail polish.

Art Journals/Sketch BooksThis first book is mine. I used a permanent paint marker to draw these tangled inspired designs which flows well with the general style of the drawings in the book.

I used the same marker for this second book. I adore the flowers. 

Art Journals/Sketch BooksWe used several different media for this third book.

We have vinyl cutout lettering stickers, butterfly foam stickers, markers and nail polish. 

Art Journals/Sketch BooksWe actually love using nail polish to craft with. We have all kinds of colors and some with glitter. Glitter makes everything special. It also sticks pretty darn good to many different surfaces. Besides who uses up the whole bottle of nail polish anyway.

We first put the lettering down then colored on top. Once Faith and I had enough color on the cover I peeled the letters off revealing the black background and giving it a bit of punch. We added the butterflies and glitter nail polish. I think it turned out pretty awesome.

Art Journals/Sketch Books
This fourth book is so cute. We used two foam heart shaped cutouts, foam stickers (some with glitter), and permanent markers. 

I helped a little. I added the stitching lines around the hearts and the outlines around the stickers.

Art Journals/Sketch BooksMy last art journal/sketch book is decorated with glitter tape forming a frame around the flowers. I used a gold glitter gel pen. The gel pen didn't adhere well so I sprayed it with a clear coat to prevent it from scratching off.

This last book's pages are all blank and the cover is decorated- all ready for me to be creative. And the great thing is we can tell who the owner is of the book and which one is current.

Art Journals/Sketch Books

We had so much fun now we are looking for more books to decorate like my gratitude journal, address book ....

Do you have any plain old books around your home just screaming to be beautified?

Darlene NemethI love to read your opinions and comments. It makes my day.
Bye for now.
Wishing you the best, Darlene

My apologies, all anonymous comments are deleted due to an excessive amount of spam.

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Monday, April 18, 2016

Chain Linky Climb

by Angie Ouellette-Tower for photo CLIMBweek4pics_zps7git2xd8.jpg
Hi, so glad you are here.Welcome to the APRIL 2016 CLIMB!

This is a month long networking Blog Hop. Each week cohosts & guest cohosts are added for ultimate exposure! 

Networking means helping each other grow!  

Help promote the CLIMB link. 

Use #ChainLinkyCLIMB on Twitter or Google+ so that we can all help each other grow!

Here's how the Giveaway & Guest Cohosting works - the hosts, cohosts & Guest cohosts from the previous month's CLIMB will have the opportunity to participate in a Giveaway during the next CLIMB - that gives co-hosts 2 months in a row of blog growing fun!!  (If you would like to guest cohost please sign up at the end of this post using the last "Linky")

We have 2 permanent cohosts for week#2, 3 permanent cohosts for week#3 and eventually we will have 4 permanent cohosts for week#4 making a grand total of 11 hosts/cohosts each month & that's not even including Guest Cohosts!

  Highest CLIMBer Features!!
Each permanent host & cohost will feature their favorite link from the previous month CLIMB!  Every "Highest CLIMBer" will be pinned to our Pinterest board.

Chain Linky CLIMB Pinterest Board

Let It Shine

My Highest CLIMBer from March 2016 is:


Please enter below. One person will win:

 photo CindyApril2016_zpsufhmj8b3.jpg

"Spring Colors" Necklace
A black Lake Michigan beach stone bead sandwiched in between colorful candy-like transparent colored glass beads and capped with silver stardust beads on either end, as a pendant, strung onto a 26 inch stainless steel petite ball chain. The cairn stack measures nearly 1.5 inches

Total prize value is $70!!

CLIMB Giveaway Rules & Conditions:
- this is open worldwide (void where prohibited)
- You must be 18 years or older to enter
- You MUST have a blog to win the Ad spaces (otherwise these will become second place prizes)
- You MUST have a valid PayPal account to win the Paypal Cash (otherwise this will become a second place prize)
- You MUST have a mailing address in the lower 48 states of the USA in order to win the necklace (otherwise these will become a second place prizes)
- facebook, google & all other social media are NOT responsible for any part of this giveaway
- This Giveaway is open from March 31st, 2016 until April 29th, 2016

  1. Winner must respond to email within 48 hours or a different winner will be chosen
  2. Giveaway Hosts, Cohosts & Guest Cohosts can NOT enter this Giveaway!, however - APRIL 2016 CLIMB blog hop co-hosts ARE allowed to enter this Giveaway (provided they are not also part of the Giveaway)
  3. Correspondence is done through email and the winner's email addresses will only be used to deliver or set-up e-prizes.  Email addresses will NEVER be sold or shared.
  4. All prizes will be delivered by the contributing Bloggers/Shop Owners.
  5. If you have any questions or concerns about this Giveaway please email one of the hosts:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Now onto the CLIMB (blog hop):

There are many ways to follow us:

April @ April Noelle
blog  |  facebook  |  google+  |  twitter bloglovin  |  YouTube instagram

Darlene @ Let It Shine
blog facebook  |  pinterest  |  twitter  |  bloglovin  |  google+ etsy

Laura @ But First Coffee Mom
blog  |  facebook  |  pinterest  |  twitter  |  bloglovin  |  google+ instagram

 photo ClimbFollow_zps7d1a2ebf.jpg

by Angie Ouellette-Tower for photo ClimbRules_zpsoye4lmso.jpg
By participating in this blog hop your understand that your link might be featured &/or promoted on our blogs & social media.  Also, by participating in this blog hop your email address will be added to our CLIMB list & you will be sent an email reminder next month. 

CLIMB by Angie Ouellette-Tower for photo ClimbLink_zpsf527c076.jpg

Remember - If you Guest Cohost you will receive a free Weekly Sidebar Ad and your blog button will appear on both Angie's blog & Angel's blog!!

(The Ad will run live a few weeks after you have co-hosted)

We are looking for amazing Bloggers like you to Guest Cohost the CLIMB! 

Please click the purple button below to sign up to Guest Cohost or click HERE!

God’s Growing Garden


by Angie Ouellette-Tower for photo ClimbSigW4_zpsdeqeohvh.jpg

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Repurposed Cupboard Doors and Curb Shopping

I think the best part about curb shopping is you never know what you will find. So much inspiration just sitting there and people are just giving it away for free!

Now that the weather is nicer I'll be seeing loads of stuff sitting out. People do a bit of spring cleaning and chuck out things they no longer want or need. So on Sunday night and even Monday night, the store is open for business. You know, because a lot of the cleaning is done on the weekend.

I also find garbage night good for shopping. That is another popular time to people to get rid of their stuff and a good day for me to pick up a bargain.

I just wish I had the nerve to jump out of my car and grab the goodies off the curb. I am still pretty shy and won't pick up something during the day or if their are people out and about. I have to wait til it's dark and the coast is clear.

That is unfortunate because I have missed out on some great bargains. The brave ones will jump in there and grab it before I get a chance to do it. Aw, such is life of a painfully shy person.

But then again, others miss out on great deals cause they don't have the vision to see the beauty sitting beside the bag of dirty diapers and the recycle bin full of cardboard. So in this way I am the lucky one.

Stag Art on old cupboard door.
Curb shopping is a great resource for inspiration and free raw crafting materials. Check out these repurposed cupboard doors - a direct result from curb shopping.

This amazing art was created by a friend. He first finds an image he loves then draws it out on paper to perfect the cut out. He has to be careful to leave enough wood in place otherwise chunks of the picture will fall out.

Once he has a plan he transfers the image to the cupboard door and he is off to the shed to use his jigsaw to cut out the design.
He finishes off the piece by placing black bristle board to the back and voila the image becomes pronounced.

Mike has plenty of experience with a jigsaw and can cut out even the finest details. And he has the specialized tools. But for those of use that don't have the skill or a jigsaw we can create the same look.

Stag Art on old cupboard door.Once we have a design chosen we can draw directly onto the cupboard door then color in the silhouette with a black marker or paint it.

If that makes you too nervous draw it on black bristle board, cut it out and apply with glue.

Which ever way you decide you will end up with this awesome custom art for your walls or for a friend.

Well that's it for now. So go curb shopping and get you some inspiration and a new project on the go.

Bye for now. 

Wishing you the best, Darlene

My apologies, all anonymous comments are deleted due to an excessive amount of spam.

Special Features

I have a great big thank you and hug reserved for Paula from Sincerely Paula and Marci from Stone Cottage Adventures for featuring my post at there linky parties. 

Just click on their party feature buttons to check out more great posts.

Then pop down to the comments section to see what they had to say and add your own.

I love to read your opinions and comments. It makes my day. 

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Sunday, April 10, 2016

Customize to Match Your Style and Decor

Today I have a pretty simple DIY to share with you. I remember seeing ceramic tiles all over Pinterest. Gosh, that was months and months ago. I remember thinking it was such an awesome idea to make them into coasters. For one it is easy to do  and for two it is a great way to customize something to match your style and decor.

If you did some home renovating and have a few extra tiles left over this is a great DIY to put them to use rather than let them lie around collecting dust. Or if you are like me you'll find some at a garage sale for a steal. I paid fifty cents for eight tiles. Or I guess you might be extra lucky to find some while curb shopping.

I have no idea how long I've had my tiles waiting around for me to work on them. Wait a second ...nope I can't remember when I purchased these ceramic tiles. I am glad I finally got around to completing this project. I love how they turned. out. 

DIY Ceramic Tile Coasters.

DIY Ceramic Tile Coasters

"Turn your left over ceramic tiles into customized coasters to match your style and decor."

DIY Ceramic Tile CoastersYou will need:

  • ceramic tiles
  • felt or some kind of material for the bottom of your tile
  • scissors to cut the felt
  • a permanent marker or pencil crayons
  • Inspiration (I used one a green foam sticker of a dragonfly)

DIY Ceramic Tile Coasters
This was my first coaster. I used a dark red pencil crayon to emphasize the coasters chiseled edges and to shade in the silhouette of a dragonfly.

Pencil crayon is actually a pretty good choice. It won't smudge when it gets wet and it doesn't scratch off easily.

If you like subtle then this would be the best technique for you to use.

DIY Ceramic Tile Coasters
My seven year old granddaughter usually likes to help out especially if it means she can be creative.

Here are  Faith's interpretation of decorated DIY coasters. 

She first made a dragon fly just like her grandma then branched off and did something of her own. 

The purple happy face will always bring a smile to my face when I pull this coaster out to use. How about you? Would you prefer to have a wee one customize a coaster for you?

Hey this would make an awesome gift for Christmas, Mother's day or even a birthday. I'll have to try and remember this.

DIY Ceramic Tile Coasters
For my second coaster, I decided to try something a little bolder. 

My friend Susan from Organized31   has used this stippling technique several times to customize  and dress up a project.

I absolutely love how these look. 

Unfortunately I learned the hard way that the marker takes quite some time to totally dry on the tile. I smudged it three times before I figured out to just let it be over night. Ya I had to redo it three times. I guess three times is a charm cause it looks better now than the first time I drew it.

DIY Ceramic Tile Coasters.I also learned that the marker needed extra protection so I gave it a couple of coats of clear finish. (Even though the marker is supposed to be permanent, it still smears when it gets wet.) Now they are totally protected. But I still wouldn't throw it in the sink with dirty dishes or in the dish washer. I would take precautions to make my art safe by just wiping off any mess on the coasters with a damp cloth.

Do you know a better way to protect the marker from bleeding when it gets wet?

I could just look at those coasters all day. Little works of art. Especially the purple happy face!

Oh look!. Imagine my surprise to see my post featured at This Momma's Meandering Mondays. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

I love to read your opinions and comments. It makes my day. 

Bye for now. 

Wishing you the best, Darlene

My apologies, all anonymous comments are deleted due to an excessive amount of spam.

Don't forget to subscribe, like and share!