Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Butterfly Seasons of Inspiration

Artfully aged, then decoupaged onto wood plaques with distressed paint edges, my butterfly digital collage prints have taken wing in a new form.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Time is Blue

I've finished a new digital collage, which turned out nothing like it began. It started with a blue satin slipper from Darvahlous,

a wonderful vintage wallpaper background from Tattered Vintage,

 and a lazuli bird from The Graphics Fairy.

Now, I haven't given up on the slipper or the lazuli bird, but my original plan somehow shifted into a more retrospective and personal theme of distance, the passage of time, and memory. The hands of the clock approximate the time of my sister's passing, the forget-me-not bouquet symbolizes my remembrance, the bird wing represents an angel wing, and the trio of swallows are my mother, myself, and my sister, Angel.  

The clock face is from The Graphics Fairy. The texture background is from Shadowhouse Creations. The wallpaper background is from Tattered Vintage.  To see more versions of this collage, and a poll for your favorite version, visit Vintage Catnip.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Sales Mystery Solved - I Can Cx the Call to Sherlock

I recently listed a set of my bird house gift tags in new patterns and, much to my surprise, they sold rather quickly (usually it takes a while for my creations to find their new home from my Etsy shop, Catnip Studio Too). The reason why, yep, front page on Etsy the day of the sale (image courtesy of Craftcult):

I am always thrilled to make the front page, and have certainly been there more than my fair share, but I think it comes down to this:  I have a large variety of color schemes in my shop items, I use the main colors as tags, and I make my photos as clear and bright as possible with my photo-editing software (without misrepresenting how the items appears in real life, monitor differences aside).

Catnip Studio has been on the front page of 1000 Markets a few times, and been a 1K "Staff Pick", but there's no archive of these ephemeral moments for 1K (yet) like there is for Etsy. I find out via my fellow 1K shopkeepers, or by pure luck I visit the site at exactly the right time, like yesterday:

1K Front Page 1-21-10

To take screen shots like these (instructions for Windows), click and hold "ctrl", click "print screen", then open the Windows "Paint" program, click "edit", click "paste" and you should see the image. Next, click "File/save as", choose .jpg or whatever and the location on your computer ("desktop" makes it easy to find), and save the image. Open the image in your photoediting program to crop it and so on, and save it to the folder of your choice. 

1K Staff Picks 10-11-09

Friday, January 22, 2010

Many Are Called, But Few Are Chosen

Two Christmas seasons ago, a Martha Stewart T.V. Show rep did a telephone interview with me for a potential spot on the show about my decoupage Christmas ornaments. I wasn't selected for the spot (an awesome paper artist, also from Etsy, was selected), but I was excited for being noticed. Many are called, but few are chosen.

This past fall, a rep from Country Living magazine contacted me about my decoupage ornaments, requesting that I send them a set for consideration. After they were received, a second set was requested and sent. Ultimately, my ornaments were returned, and the published feature on Christmas ornaments showcased terrific non-traditional tree decorations, and it was clear to me why my more traditional ornaments didn't make the cut. I was still excited, but not so much about my shipping costs to get my ornaments from west coast to east coast by their deadline with no resulting publication. Many are called, but few are chosen.

I had dressed in my gown and heels, but no one would take me to the party - until now, or more accurately, until I recently received my copy of the November 2009 issue of Canadian House and Home. Their monthly Trend Watch was about brocade items, and my brocade paper Christmas ornament gift tags were right there (as the rep told me they would be)! My copy of the magazine is now artfully staged and hermetically sealed in a UV-light-protected glass pedestal case in the middle of my living room. Thank you, Canadian House and Home, for calling, and for taking me to the party choosing me, at last! 

I was kidding about the glass case.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Illuminated Manuscript Digital Collage Wall Art

I've been busy this week working on decoupage wall hangings made from my digital collage prints.  Illuminated manuscript images have caught my eye (they are so lovely, and so hard to find quality photos of the pages that are also copyright free/public domain). This particular illuminated manuscript border came from Vintage Printable.  I am sad that I will never see one of these pages in real life; the originals are all in private collections, or in museums and libraries overseas where they originated centuries before the United States was born. For some beautiful examples, check out the Flickr group Manuscripta Mediaevalia.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Collage Sheet - Wind Rose

As my love affair with digital collage continues, I tried my hand at a digital collage sheet (bottom of post) of my own design. It contains elements from The Graphics Fairy (pink rose), Vintage Printable (wind compass and lace), Art Freebies (script background), Antique Images (floral print background),  Shadowhouse Creations (texture background), and a stock frame from Photoshop. The collage sheet will only be available for download through Wednesday, Jan. 20th (on Thursday it will magically develop watermarks).  Click on the image for the largest size (300dpi). Happy Valentine's Day crafting!

I made some gift tags printed from the sheet. 

 I really liked the plaid ribbon (I love to mix patterns), but it was too wide for the small hole punch.  

I cut the ribbon in half lengthwise, and tugged at the edge to remove threads for a nice finish with no fraying. Probably a no-brainer, but I remember plenty of times before that I didn't think of this solution!


Saturday, January 16, 2010

Hands Down Best Giveaway Ever (but it's not here)

It's too art-supplies-scrumptious to be believed, but you must see Enchanted Revelry's   giveaway in celebration of 300 followers; 40,000 hits (I know!); and his 200th post. But don't leave a comment. 


(sort of).

Friday, January 15, 2010

2nd Annual Valentine Giveaway - Free Crafting Goodies!

1-15-10 This giveaway is closed, and the winners were selected at I'll be contacting the winners via email today. Thanks to all of you for participating, and Happy Valentine's Day!

1st:  SharDon           2nd: icandy        3rd: Graphics Fairy     4th: Kymberly

1-8-10  One of these small heart tins chock full of Valentine crafting goodies will go to four lucky Valentines chosen by on Friday, January 15th, in plenty of time for you to receive for V-day crafting.  Just leave a comment with your favorite candy conversation heart phrase (like "Be Mine" and so on), and you are in the drawing!

Hand punched lattice hearts, quilted heart stickers, glitter heart stickers.

My favorite V-day running stitch ribbon (3 feet), satin rose, glitter heart hanging ornie, acrylic heart gem bling, hand punched paper hearts, heart button.

Hand punched, stamped, and inked paper layered hearts.

The works. Each tin will have an almost identical set to these.

The first winner drawn of four will also receive this NIB heart punch and these gently used, almost new rubber heart stamps. Happy Valentine's Day Crafting!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Monday, January 11, 2010

Attack of the Sock Monkeys

Don't worry - you're safe - they don't fly!

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