Puffy Pentagon Boxes and Chocolate Make Perfect Travel Gifts

I always like to have a bunch of gifts on hand when I travel as I never know when I may want to give a little “thank you” to someone. It doesn’t seem to be a problem for me when I’m traveling by car or in my van. There’s always a little space to pack my gifts.

These puffy pentagon boxes pack flat for packing. They’re the perfect size to hold a Dagoba Chocolate taster square.

But it becomes a little more difficult when I travel by air. And our current trip was even more difficult because because we flew back to Arizona where we had left our van. Our suitcases were full of clothes and supplies for six weeks of traveling. There wasn’t much “extra” room. I solved the problem with two of my favorite things, my puffy pentagon boxes and Dagoba chocolate taster squares.

It takes just moments for the puffy pentagon box to go from flat into a delightful little box.

The puffy pentagon box stores flat, making it a perfect choice for taking with me when traveling. And the taster squares don’t take up much space either. The only hard part has been not eating all the chocolate before I give it as a gift.

The perfect paring for a gift, chocolate and a handmade little puffy pentagon box.

Here’s a link to my DIY blog post that details how to make the clover fold box and the template so you can make your own.

Blog post: DIY – Puffy Pentagon Box

Template: Puffy Pentagon Box

Enjoy, Candy

Paper Illuminated Online Class – Weeks 5 & 6

You may wonder why weeks 5 & 6 come before weeks 3 and 4. Well, there were a few equipment and materials glitches that happened due my traveling. They will show up later, but this is the foldable paper chochin lamp that I made this past week.

I collaged my collapsable the paper on my chochin lamp rather than using the template Helen provided.

Week 5 was building the armature (which can be used over again and again). Week 6 was making the lamp shade. I collaged mine rather than following the instructions exactly. I like the way it came out.

Collapsable paper cochin lamp.

The chochin lampshade can be made in different shapes and sizes. There are so many different possibilities with this type of lampshade. My mind is swimming with possibilities.

Enjoy, Candy

National Letter Writing Month 2017 – Week 2

I have been having a lot of fun with making envelopes and writing letters this past week. I have finally found something that works well with traveling. I still don’t quite have things as organized as I’d like, but at least I’m not losing my art supplies as I was on my last trip.

These are two of the letters and envelopes that I sent out this past week.

I love it when April rolls around each year. I seem to be way behind in my correspondence and National Card & Letter Writing Month gives me permission to drop everything else and concentrate on writing letters and making unique decorated envelopes.

I was delighted to find that there was no additional postage for the folded envelopes with the diagonal corners. Yea!

This year, I’ve been making a bunch of folded envelopes that have diagonal corners. I took some of them to the Post Office to ask just how much extra postage they would require. No extra postage. So, I’m making lots more of these envelopes. I’m including another little origami envelope in with my letter. See my blog post DIY Origami Envelope and a link to the instructions.

Two of the letters and envelopes I sent out this past week for National Card & Letter Writing Month.

I feel as though I might actually get caught up on my letter writing. Of course, with being away from home for a month and a half, I’m sure there’ll be a bunch more mail waiting for me.

Two more of the folded envelopes with diagonal corners.

I have lots of pen pals who enjoy folded paper, so I’m sending them the folded envelopes with diagonal corners. I made my envelopes from wrapping paper samples.

Two more letters and envelopes that went out this past week for National Card & Letter Writing Month.

Enjoy, Candy

National Letter Writing Month 2017 – Week 1

I’m just getting started on my letters for National Card & Letter Writing Month. As in past years, I’m sending out at least one letter (in a decorated envelope) for the entire month of April. This year, with all the traveling I’ve been doing, I’m way behind in my correspondence, so I’m going to try and get caught up this month. Wish me luck!

My first two letters and envelopes for this year’s National Card & Letter Writing Month.

My first letter went to Susan, a dear friend who could use a little pick-me-up. I decided to send her a flower envelopes I though it was cheery and she could enjoy it without having to water or care for it.

More envelopes sent out this week for National Card & Letter Writing Month.

As the month progresses, I’m hoping to get some inspiration for decorating envelopes from my “new” stash of old stamps that I acquired last fall from a stamp collector. I got to go through a bunch of his stamps and pick out ones that I liked. They’re so cool, I’m going to have trouble parting with them.

These are just a few of the stamps I purchased last fall from a stamp collector. Aren’t they wonderful?

Happy Mail Art, Candy

April Is National Letter Writing Month

I brought a bunch of my correspondence with me on this latest trip. With April being National Letter Writing month and me being behind on answering all the wonderful letters and little paper gifts I’ve received lately, I figured this would be a win-win.

Some of the wonderful mail art I’ve received lately.

There’s not much space for art supplies while I’m traveling, but I have enough space for envelopes, a few pens and brushes, and a little paper. As with the past few years, I will be sending out at least one letter a day for the entire month of April.

It’s so much fun to open my mail and have such great surprises inside the envelopes.

I have many more than just 30 letters to write, so I’m going to try and double or triple up on as many days as I can. It’s going to be a fun month, and I’ll be sharing a few envelope projects with you.

I have such creative friends. It’s a joy to open my mail.

Tomorrow I’ll be driving to Tucson. I remember from my last trip that they had wonderful artwork on the bridges along the trip. This time I will have time to stop and take photos, maybe even sketch some of the designs in my journal. I’m hoping they will make their way into some of my envelope designs this next month.

Some of the wonderful mail art I’ve received lately.

For those of you who have been following my blog, here’s an update on the Paper Illuminated online class that I’m taking from Helen Hiebert. We left the van in Arizona and flew back home and then back to Arizona. I hadn’t planed that when I signed up for Helen’s class. I thought I would be home for the entire 6 weeks of the class. I got my first two projects done (More Traveling Ahead & Paper Illuminated Online Class – Week 2) and brought the rest of the supplies with me to work on while traveling. However, I decided TSA wouldn’t take fondly to my taking a saw in my carry on luggage, so I left it at home and just purchased one here. So, my shoji screen, which was this week’s project will be a little late. I bought a little saw and mitre box yesterday and should be able to get started on it on Sunday. Biosphere2 and Tucson are tomorrow and Saturday.

It’s wonderful having such creative friends. Long live snail mail!

I am looking forward to writing lots of letters and decorating lots of envelopes this next month. I hope you are too!

Enjoy, Candy

Paper Illuminated Online Class – Week 2

I’m taking an online class from Helen Hiebert called Paper Illuminated. This past week I made a wraparound lampshade. I didn’t have a lamp the right size so the photo shows a bit of the bulb base. Still, I do like how the lamp looks when it’s lit.

Wrap around lampshade I made from paper.

When I signed up for the class, I thought I’d be home during the time of the class. I was for the first two weeks. Now, however, I’m traveling again. I packed the remainder of the supplies and have them with me. I am hoping I can make the rest of the projects while I’m gone.

Wrap around lampshade made from paper.

Enjoy, Candy

Happy St. Patrick’s Day 2017

I made this shamrock some time ago and shared the instructions last year. See the link below to make your own.

See the link below for the instructions to make your own paper shamrock.

DIY Paper Shamrock

Enjoy, Candy

More Traveling Ahead

After the two months of traveling I did recently, I’ve decided I want to travel more, a lot more. I’ve been home less than a month and I’m itching to get traveling again.

Paper lamp shade I made from Helen Hiebert’s Paper Illuminated online class.

The only real paper art I’ve done since I got back home is the paper lampshade from week 1 of Helen Hiebert’s online class, Paper Illuminated. (Filling out 1040 forms for my dad’s and my taxes don’t qualify as paper art.) This is a six week class, and I’ll keep you posted with the projects I make. Since I’ll be taking off soon for the southwest, I will be taking the supplies with me so I can keep working on the class projects as I travel.

I love how the light shows through the paper on this lamp shade.

I used the paper for this lamp shade that was included in Helen’s kit. It almost matches perfectly the switch plates I covered with paper a few years back. You can see my switch plate in the above two photos. Here’s the link to my blog post about covering them: Paper Covered Switch Plates.

Great instructions from Helen Hiebert for making this lamp shade in her online Paper Illuminated class.

I am sure this traveling is going to have an effect on my art. I just don’t know what it will be right now. I’m sorting through my art supplies and trying to figure out which ones I’ll want to travel with. I’ll keep you posted.

Enjoy, Candy

Studio Snapshot – Mail Received

I’ve been home for just over a week and the only paper I’ve been involved with is going through two months worth of mail and working on my and my dad’s taxes. Not the kind of paperwork I enjoy, but it needs to be done.

Mail I received while I was traveling for two months. Opening it will be my reward for finishing my dad’s and my taxes.

As an incentive to make sure I get it all done quickly, I’ve not allowed myself to open all the lovely mail art I received while I was traveling. I keep looking wistfully at all the wonderful envelopes and it does help me keep focused on getting the drudgery of paper work done. Actually, I’m almost finished. I’m thinking I will get to finally open my mail tomorrow or Friday.

I also received in the mail yesterday the supply kit for the online class: Paper Illuminated that I’m taking from Helen Hiebert. There’s still time to register for that. It starts March 8. See: Paper Illuminated Online Class for details.

Enjoy, Candy

Art On The Go – What I Learned While Traveling For Two Months

I’m just back from traveling for two months. I enjoyed it, but things did not go as I anticipated. I’m not complaining. I met wonderful people, formed new friendships and enjoyed numerous activities. It’s been great!

Metal art found on an office wall. This is my inspiration for some paper art I am planning on making in the future.

I packed expecting one set of adventures, but fate had different plans. Everything went as planned until the second week in January. Then things got interesting. We stayed with new friends while waiting for multiple appointments for our van which developed a fuel leak. Since most of my art supplies were in the van, which was being worked on, I didn’t get all that much art done. My planned trip to a paper art exhibit Tucson, didn’t happen. Nor did I get to visit Sedona or Santa Fe or Taos.

Hiking in the Superstition Mountains in Arizona.

We did make it to the Superstition Mountains. Great hiking and wonderful views. Car trouble there, but wonderful strangers to help carry 5 of us out. Lots of wonderful experiences, but not what was planned.

A piece of calligraphy I did with a brush marker and black pen.

What did I learn from this experience? I packed too many art supplies of the wrong type. I was typing to do the same type of art that I would have done at home. Next time I’m going with a couple of journals with watercolor paper and drawing paper. I won’t plan on making boxes on my trip. I’ll keep it simple with watercolors and a few different types of pens and pencils.

Being serenaded by the bird on the top of the Saguaro Cactus.

As I do more traveling, I’m sure I’ll revise what I take on my travels. I’ll keep you posted as to what works for me as I travel.

Enjoy, Candy

Hanging Heart From Helen Hiebert’s 2017 Twelve Months of Paper Calendar

While traveling, I am not able to make February’s paper project from Helen Hiebert’s 2017 Twelve Months of Paper Calendar. There just wasn’t enough room to pack everything. I purchased both the calendar as well as the custom paper pack, so it’s going to be fun to make this once I get back home.

Hanging Heart, February’s paper project from Helen Hiebert’s 2017 Twelve Months of Paper Calendar.

This is Helen’s photo of the hanging heart she made. The instructions for making this are included in her calendar, one project for each month of the year.

This is very similar to the hanging hearts I shared in December 2014 and February 2015.

These paper Valentine Heart Ornaments are made from polka dot scrapbook paper. My instructions are my blog post: DIY Hanging Paper Heart Ornaments

If you are interested in getting your own calendar see: 2017 Twelve Months of Paper Calendar.

Enjoy, Candy

Paper Cranes

I took a friend to a doctor’s office in Mesa, Arizona and was greeted by these wonderful paper cranes. I love discovering paper art, especially in unexpected places.

Paper cranes found in a doctor’s office.

Paper cranes found in a doctor’s office.

Paper cranes found in a doctor’s office.

I love the idea of using folded origami paper cranes as a room divider.

Enjoy, Candy

Studio Snapshot – Art On The Go! – Folding Origami Mandalas

I’m finding that it’s been harder to do art while traveling than I had supposed. As I have written earlier, Paul and I are on a 2 month trip in our 19′ van. It took a bit of preparation to cut and package the few art supplies I could fit between our clothes and food.

It takes 8 pieces of paper 1″ by 4″ to make one origami mandala.

So far, I’ve not been able spend as much time making art as I would like. On days when we drive 8 to 12 plus hours, very little art gets done.

Origami mandalas I’ve made so far on our trip. These will be made into finished pieces once I get home.

We’ve been doing a lot of visiting with family and friends. While I’ve been able to eek out a bit of  time for folding and box making, it’s been in very short periods of time. We’ve also been making new friends, attending numerous potlucks, dancing, trying new foods and restaurants, hiking and so much more. We’ll be visiting Biosphere 2 this next week and probably a number of other places. This is leaving me less time for my art than I expected. But, I am relaxing and enjoying myself.

Sometimes I just have a few minutes, so I can fold just a few pieces and add to my stash of folded paper to make into my origami mandalas.

I’m still trying to get into a rhythm for my days. This traveling is new to me and I’m loving it. I know everything will fall into place eventually. Meanwhile, I’ll keep trying to eek out my art in small periods of time.

Enjoy, Candy

Online Class: Paper Illuminated by Helen Hiebert

A number of years ago I took a class from paper artist, Helen Hiebert, just before she moved to Colorado. I learned a lot and enjoyed the class immensely. Helen is a great teacher.

This is the shoji screen we will be making in Helen Hiebert’s Paper Illuminated online class.

I thought I’d like to take another class from Helen. However, Colorado is a bit far for me to travel to take a class.

This is the bendable paper lamp we will be making in Helen Hiebert’s Paper Illuminated online class.

So when I heard Helen was going to do an online class, I jumped at the opportunity to sign up for it. It starts on March 8, and I expect to be back home from my travels by then (thankfully). P.S. There is an early bird discount available if you sign up before February 1.

This is the chochin lampshade we will be making in Helen Hiebert’s Paper Illuminated online class.

I am going to clear my schedule (as much as I can) so I can have time to play with the structures Helen is going to teach. It’s a 5 week class, so it shouldn’t be too difficult to find enough time during each week. It’s so easy for me to overbook my time, but this is going to be so worth it.

This is the wraparound lampshade we will be making in Helen Hiebert’s Paper Illuminated online class.

There’s going to be a private Facebook page for those of us who are taking the class. It’s going to be a lot of fun seeing what everyone is doing. We’ll be able to ask questions of Helen too.

These are the five projects we’ll be making in Helen Hiebert’s Paper Illuminated online class.

In addition to the class, I’ve ordered the Supply Kit for the class to make it easier for me to make the projects. If you take the class, you will need a few other materials like a cutting mat, straight pins, a craft knife and such. You can check out the materials need on Helen’s website link below.

Materials in the supply kit for Helen Hiebert’s Paper Illuminated online class.

If you’re interested in taking this class, or want more information on it, see: Helen Hiebert’s Online Class: Paper Illuminated.

Enjoy, Candy

Studio Snapshot – Art On The Go! – Making Boxes

Traveling for two months in a 19′ van has made it a little more difficult form me to make art than I imagined. Welcome to reality. I haven’t quite found my rhythm yet.

One of the boxes in my series for Random Kindness and Senseless Acts of Beauty.

We visited family over the holidays and I did manage to appropriate a bit of space on a  counter to set up my supplies to make boxes. These are boxes I’m making to leave for people to find. You can see more about that on my blog post: Gifts of Random Kindness & Senseless Acts of Beauty.

One of the boxes in my series for Random Kindness and Senseless Acts of Beauty.

What I have found is that folding is much easier to do while traveling, assuming the paper has already been cut ahead of time. I think that’s because I can fit folding into short blocks of time. Box making, however, takes a bit of preparation.

One of the boxes in my series for Random Kindness and Senseless Acts of Beauty.

Before we left on our trip, I cut enough pieces of binders board to make 30 boxes. I also brought lots of paper for collaging the boxes once I made them.  I had hoped to be able to make a box every other day on my trip. We’ll see if I can catch up to my expectations.

One of the boxes in my series for Random Kindness and Senseless Acts of Beauty.

While relaxing and visiting with family and friends is important, I find that I feel so much better when I make time to do art each day. So, that is going to be my goal for this next week.

Enjoy, Candy