Life is Good - Thank You Lisa!

Our calligraphy guild was super blessed to have Lisa Engelbrecht teach us a "lettering on fabric" workshop. I have had so many opportunities to use the techniques that she taught me and I have used them over and over again! Lisa continues to be a huge inspiration to me and is missed and loved. I think of Lisa every time I letter on fabric.

I absolutely love combining my rubber stamp passion with my love of calligraphy and marrying the fabric and paper together! I have made so many fabric/paper books.  It's truly my addiction. The book I made was using scraps left from other projects - different sizes, colors, and textures. I am using rubber stamps and calligraphy on the pages. My book is almost complete - an easy theme of "Life is Good".

Let Them Eat Cake!

I saw this project in an old Somerset Studio issue and it was very interesting to me. If you see something you want to make, you just have to know that you'll be engineering it yourself because as with ALL Somerset Studio project articles, the instructions are always incomplete. The good news is that this was my first attempt and I learned a lot of what to do and what not to do. Already I am looking forward to making the next cake.  Look out Betty Crocker!


Judi's altered book with the story of Violet was super interesting and fun to do.  It was my thought to do a "Dada" poetry idea.  Instead of rearranging words, I took four pages and took sentences from those pages to reinvent the ending since I was the last artist to work in her book. 
I took the beginning page of Judi's as my start of the story line.
I was thrilled to find in my stash of vintage ephemera, TheCunard Steam-Ship Company brochures which was a perfect background Violet's story.
This photo was inside the brochure and I thought the conversation I wanted to add fit so well.
The rubber stamp image is from B-Line Designs named "Chris".  I enjoy having this stamp in my collection as he is named for my brother, Chris - pretty darn cool.  I thought the image worked well with the gentleman visiting with Violet and not yet described in the story. I stamped the image onto a copy of the ship's crew list.
I made the assumption that this conversation was a continuance from the same gentleman she has met above and is a welcomed distraction for her.
This is another great stamp from B-Line Designed named "Michelle" which is named after my sister-in-law who is married to my brother Chris.  They are good friends of Beverly who owns and designs her stamps.  She names her stamp images after her close friends.
I saw this idea in a visual journal book and thought it was a great idea for creating a skyline.  I did have an Empire State building stamp and took liberties in using a Big Ben image along with others from the UK to now be a part of the NYC skyline.  It's all made up anyway.
I used a vintage customs declaration as the background for this text entry and giving explanation for Violet's extended stay in NYC.
I stamped the telephone image onto mulberry paper and added diamond glaze for the dial numbers.  I was thrilled to locate a conversation where Violet has decided to contact Edwin's office.  Of course, the response has to be highlighted by the red metal file pull.
This page was highlighted by the rubber stamp image of what could be Violet's expression after receiving a response from Edwin.  And of course, she has thoughts about her past.
This page is intended to give the viewer a feeling of reflection.....
a yin and yang for destruction and goodness.
I was thrilled to find the text above and rearrange them in a manner that left the reader with the option of believing Edwin appeared in person and all is well or if in a dream.... perhaps to be continued.  The final text entry is the name of the book "Dancing Backwards".

I made an insane number of page entries but since I was the last artist working in Judi's book, I gave myself permission as I knew I was not taking away pages from the others.  When I gathered all the text that I wanted to use and sorted them in the order that I wanted the story to be told, it took a number of pages. After the text was selected, it was easy enough to decide on the background images.

Jan's Alpha Book

Jan's book was a whooping huge size, however, once I selected the "M", the theme of Minneapolis and Minnesota made it easy.

I was almost tempted to do another letter but unfortunately I didn't have the time.

"Define It" by Sharon

Sharon loves letter forms and words in addition to being a mixed-media artist.  She was recently a guest artist in Stamper's Sampler summer issue featuring her amazing cards along with a wonderful interview.  She altered an existing calendar for "Define It" giving each participating artist an opportunity to use images, photos and rubber stamping to define their chosen letter.  I selected the letter "P" for Pisces.  I so enjoyed working in her book! 
I love the idea of altering an existing calendar and I'm now inspired to alter one from my personal stash!

I adhered blue mulberry paper to represent water.
Loved using my Pisces stamp!  I added star embellishments everywhere there was a star in the stamp design.  To emphasize the theme, I added text using a label gadget.
The images of the bathing beauties are from Graphic 45. 
The fish man is one of my favorite rubber stamp images.  He so much fun to dress in different clothes which takes a bit of fussy cutting and planning but worth all the effort!
I think Sharon will especially enjoy the collage work on this page.  It was fun adding different textures.
This was my last page - Sharon requested that we do four pages.  I added the yarn to the edges of each page and sewed tabs using the extra canvas from the background I used on the 1st page.  I dyed the canvas material using Tim Holtz sprays and stencils several years ago for a major project.  I have small sizes left that I enjoy using in my art.  My stash is almost depleted and I will need to take time to do more.   It's a messy process and I like doing a bunch so I have a supply on hand.
The odd shapes are from a piece of jewelry that I took apart.  I think they make interesting "pretend" stones or shells.  I added bling where the hole was drilled.

Marsha's Vintage Faux Album

I loved Marsha's theme of original photos
from Opal Thorpe's photo album
making fictional stories of her life.

I couldn't resist the idea of both of them loving each other's home
however, in the end loving their own country's home more.

Pat's Nature Journal

I enjoyed being the first participant to contribute to Pat's book. I find for myself that I am more free to implement my ideas because no one else has done them in her book yet.

Knock Knock SOLD!

I am so excited that (MCBA)The Minnesota Center for Book Arts sold my book "Knock Knock". This has to be one of my all time favorite books that I made. The beautiful embossed covers were saved from the landfill and adding a lion knocker to the cover really gave the book a feel of Harry Potter. I used two thread colors for the Greek binding - twenty signatures total. It's my wish that the owner will enjoy this journal for eons!

Cowgirl Jessica!

My friend Melinda's daughter, Jessica is quite the cowgirl. She is graduating from high school and appreciates hand made things instead of store bought gifts. I recently had tags published in the RubberStampMadness issue for "Days Gone By". I made a different book cover for Jessica than the one that I submitted because I wanted to find a leather piece from my stash that represented a saddle. Congrats as she earned a few ribbons over the weekend in a barrel racing competition! I added quotes on the back of each tag for her.

I did make the inserts for the tags that was different than the original submission.  I separated the pockets using sewing instead of grommets.  The accordion folded book contained four pockets with a map background of areas where her family has taken camping trips.
This is one of the quotes that I added to each of the tags.

FYI - I'll be posting my original book later.

Modern Shrine for Rin

Rin is my bookkeeper for my business and has become a very dear and precious friend! She asked me to make an art piece for her that would incorporate a quote that was meaningful to her. I decided on making her a shadowbox which I am calling a "shrine". Rin loves most things vintage and recycles everything. The cigar box which came from my friends from St. Louis seemed like a good start. The paper dolls were from Rin's childhood, the two dominoes became the perfect "feet" which I got from a scavenging trip in Cincinnati, the paper flowers from my friend, Minori who lives in Japan. The list continues with the resin yellow roses from Pat in England along with the ledger paper cir. 1940's. The quote was written on paste paper that I had made when I lived in Tulsa. The top knob was harvested from an old furniture piece being discarded. It was great incorporating so many of my favorite things from friends from around the globe along with items from my studio. I super enjoyed making this piece for Rin!

I added paper to each side to complete the box.