Monthly Archives: January 2014

Long-Stemmed Hearts Revisited

Long stemmed hearts in a variety of colors are perfect for Valentine's Day.
Long stemmed hearts in a variety of colors are perfect for Valentine’s Day.

Valentine’s Day is approaching and I decided I would revisit a post I did last January on Long-Stemmed Hearts. It is a favorite of mine and I hope you enjoy it again too.

Lately I have been playing around with paper hearts. My favorite I have dubbed the Long-Stemmed Heart. I started out making the traditional red heart. Then I decided to add pinks and purples. Why stop there? I got a little carried away and have made the hearts in all sorts of colors. Then it was time to play with different color combinations for the bouquets.

Long stem hearts 3
Purple, blue and teal Long-Stemmed Hearts.
Long stem hearts 4
Warm colored Long-Stemmed Hearts.
Long stem hearts 5
Purples and blue look great. You don’t always have to have red hearts.
Here I went with reds, pinks and purple long stemmed hearts.
Here I went with cool colored Long-Stemmed Hearts.

Unlike roses, my Long-Stemmed Hearts won’t wilt after a week and never need watering. In fact, it’s highly advised that you don’t.

I hope this inspires you.

Enjoy, Candy

 

Envelope Mail Art

This is an envelope I sent to Jean Wilson. If you are interested in mail art, check out Jeans blog pushingtheenvelopes.

This is an envelope I sent to Jean Wilson. If you are interested in mail art, check out Jeans blog pushingtheenvelopes.

I love sending and receiving mail the “old fashioned” way, in actual physical envelopes with hand written addresses. Being a calligrapher as well as an artist, and having lots of friends with similar interests, I have sent and received some very interesting envelopes. I hope the following examples spark some interest in sending some fun mail art to your friends.

(You may notice that some of the addresses appear incomplete. Aside from Jean Wilson, whose address is freely shared on her envelope blog, I felt it best to digitally remove the addresses from my images before posting them for all the world to see.)

Here is an envelope that Jean sent to me.

Here is an envelope that Jean sent to me. The “gingerbread” in the stamp is echoed in my name.

Here are the envelopes I sent out for the envelope exchange. (see photo below for how they looked before I added the addresses and stamps).

Here are the envelopes I sent out for the envelope exchange. (see photo below for how they looked before I added the addresses and stamps).

This is how the envelopes looked as I started, with just the hand hearts. I used three different watercolors and one acrylic iridescent ink.

This is how the envelopes looked as I started, with just the hand hearts. I used three different colors of watercolor and one acrylic iridescent ink.

This envelope came from Tammie in 1997. Notice the 32 cent stamp.

This envelope came from Tammie in 1997. Notice the 32 cent stamp.

This envelope and note card started out as handmade paper made and given to me by a friend. My mother did the Chinese brush painting on the front of them. I love them too much to actually use them.

This envelope and note card started out as handmade paper made and given to me by a friend. I asked my mother to do the Chinese brush painting on the front of them. I love them too much to actually use them.

This envelope came from Sandy. It's from 1995. Again, notice the 32 cent stamp.

This envelope came from Sandy. It’s from 1995. Again, notice the 32 cent stamp.

This card and envelope came from Cathy from Mississippi. She said she never uses orange, but was inspired by the stamp to try it. I think it worked out GREAT!

This card and envelope came from Cathy from Mississippi. She said she never uses orange, but was inspired by the stamp to try it. I think it worked out GREAT!

This envelope came from Susan, who is obviously a very practiced calligrapher. She wrote on the paper first, then made it into an envelope. This is another case where the stamp and envelope decoration work together to create a work of art.

This envelope came from Susan, who is obviously a very practiced calligrapher. She wrote on the paper first, then made it into an envelope. This is another case where the stamp and envelope decoration work together to create a work of art.

This colorful envelope came from Betty. I love how fresh the colors are here.

This colorful envelope came from Betty. I love how fresh the colors are here.

This envelope came from Michelle. This is her first attempt at a Zentangle. I think it's a great doodle.

This envelope came from Michelle. This is her first attempt at a Zentangle. I think it’s a great doodle!

This envelope came from Brigitte. I believe the coloring is a colored pencil.

This envelope came from Brigitte. I believe the coloring is a colored pencil.

This envelope came from Donna in 1997. White on pink makes such a strong statement.

This envelope came from Donna in 1997. White on pink makes such a strong statement.

Another envelope from Brigitte. I think the pink letters are actually stamps she made, probably from erasers.

Another envelope from Brigitte. I think the pink letters are actually stamps she made, probably from erasers.

This envelope came from Pam from back in 1997. I love the triangle stamp. It's from 1997.

This envelope came from Pam from back in 1997. I love the triangle stamp and how Pam did the calligraphy to make the stamp more noticeable.

This envelope is from Jan who absolutely loves stamps. Look just above the address at the little "snail mail" snail.

This envelope is from Jan who absolutely loves stamps. Look just above the address at the little “snail mail” snail.

There is so much you can do with envelopes. For more ideas see Jean Wilson’s blog: pushingtheevnelopes.

Happy creating, Candy

DIY & Easy Heart Wreathes & Garlands

Heart wreath made from 1" by 8 1/2" strips of paper.

Heart wreath made from 1-inch by 8 1/2-inch strips of paper.

Today I thought I would share some very easy heart decorations that anyone, including children, can make. Quick and simple, but brimming with potential, these wreaths and garlands can make decorating for Valentine’s Day a snap. I like them because parents and children can turn this into a fun family project to do together.

Three hearts made from double sided paper. Each heart was from a piece of paper 1" by 8 1/2"

Three hearts made from double sided card stock. Each heart was from a piece of paper 1-inch by 8 1/2-inches.

To make the basic heart shape, I started with strips of paper 1-inch by 8 1/2-inches and folded them in half, lengthwise.

Then, still folded, I applied a bit of glue stick to the very tops of the strips (on the outside), glueing about the top 1/4-inch or 1/2-inch.

Bending the freshly glued tops of the strips down and in toward the center fold, the glued sides end up facing each other. Then I pushed them together until the glue set (or hold in place with a paper clip).

It’s a little difficult to put into words, so check out the photo above.

Here the hearts are glued together to form an arc.

Here the hearts are glued together to form an arc.

Once the hearts were made, I put a bit of glue on the side and held the hearts together with plastic-coated paper clips in a wreath shape until the glue dried.

Here the hearts are glued together to form a wreath. Just add a ribbon and hang.

Here the hearts are glued together to form a wreath. Just add a ribbon and hang.

I used glue stick, but if you really want to go fast, you can use a stapler. You get the same heart result, but the staples are visible. I prefer a glue stick, but it does take a little longer.

These heart garlands are made from text weight paper rather than the card stock of the wreathes.

These heart garlands are made from text weight paper rather than the card stock used for the wreaths.

Next, I decided to use some of my strips of paper to make a garland of hearts. I used text weight paper, not the stiffer paper needed to keep the wreaths in shape. Here, I poked the bottom of one heart into the top of the next heart and glued them together to make my garland. If you are NOT stapling, then you will need to glue the bottom (where you make the fold) about 1/4-inch to 1/2-inch to get the same result.

Hot pink and purple heart garlands.

Hot pink and purple heart garlands.

Red and white heart garland made with strips of paper 1/2" x 6"

Red and white heart garland made with strips of paper 1/2-inch by 6-inches.

I decided to vary the length and width of the paper strips for my garlands. The red and white garland above was made with strips that are 1/2-inch by 6-inches. Feel free to play around with different widths and lengths of paper and see which results you like best. Or maybe you’ll find that you like having a variety of garland sizes. You can even mix lengths in the same garland if you want different size hearts.

You can just pile the hearts together to make an interesting table decoration or display.

You can even pile the hearts together to make an interesting table decoration or display.

There are many different variations on these wreathes and garlands. Play around and see what you come up with.

Happy creating, Candy

DIY Cube Heart Box – Template Included

Cube heart box made from one of my handmade paste papers.

Cube heart box made from one of my handmade paste papers.

With Valentine’s Day coming next month, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking and playing around the theme of hearts. This is a simple box that closes with two flaps that come together to make a heart. I call it a cube heart box.

Heart cube box made from a digital print of one of my handmade paste papers.

Heart cube box made from a digital print of one of my handmade paste papers.

Just print out the template on the back of a piece of decorative paper, cut on the solid lines, fold on the dotted lines and use a bit of glue on the flaps to hold it all together. To close it, gently bend the top flaps in and slip the tabs of the heart together.

Click here to download the template.

Cube heart box made out of one of my handmade paste papers.

Cube heart box made out of one of my handmade paste papers.

I designed my template to fit on an 8 1/2″ x 11″ piece of paper, but you could enlarge or reduce the size if you need a larger or smaller box.

Three cube heart boxes.

Three cube heart boxes.

What to include in your finished box? My friends say that you can’t go wrong with chocolate.

Enjoy, Candy

Studio Organization

I was given this bar about 15 years ago when my parents moved. It's been in my studio ever since, storing my art supplies.

I was given this bar about 15 years ago when my parents moved. It’s been in my studio ever since, storing my art supplies.

My friend, Wanda, shared a photo last week of her newly cleaned and organized studio. I was envious of her beautiful environment in which to start the new year. Wanda’s photo gave me the push I needed, and I’ve spent the past three days working on cleaning and organizing my home studio along with the associated storage closets in the hall, garage and guest bedroom.

Here the bar is open so you can see how much can be stored in such a small place. I have inks, pastes, brushes, pens and all sorts of supplies. It has a marble top that opens to rest on the doors. And it's on wheels too. I think it is a must for every artist's studio.

Here the bar is open so you can see how much can be stored in such a small place. I have inks, pastes, brushes, pens and all sorts of supplies. The bar has a marble top that opens to rest on the open doors. And it’s on wheels too. I think it’s a must for every artist’s studio.

This morning, I arose to a completely cleared off drafting table. Ah, bliss! I have been happily working for hours. My projects are all in nice clear plastic boxes, all with labels on them. I love clear plastic boxes for storage. Being able to see inside the boxes is important for me, even when they’re labeled.

Although I have many ways and places to store my supplies, today I’m sharing my favorite, the bar my parents gave me when they moved about 15 years ago. It didn’t fit their new home. I immediately put it in my art studio, and although I have moved twice since, it has always had a prime location in my home studio.

What’s your favorite way to organize your studio or your art supplies?

Enjoy, Candy

For continuing inspiration, you can check out my Facebook page where every day this month I am posting a photo of a heart or hearts.