Monthly Archives: May 2015

DIY – Coordinating Stationery

I’ve been sending out letters and notes in my flower envelopes (see Flower Envelopes – The Process for how I make them). However, with all the effort I’ve gone through to make the envelopes, it seemed a shame that I didn’t have coordinating stationery to go with the envelopes. So, I decided to rectify that situation.

I used the same colors on the stripe on note paper that I used to paint the envelope and now it's coordinating stationery and not just a pretty envelope.

I used the same colors on the stripe of the note paper that I used to paint the envelope. I now have coordinating stationery, not just a pretty envelope.

I wanted something simple, yet have it match the colors and style of the envelope. I used a number of papers, both watercolor and light cover papers, papers from my stash. If I were to buy a paper, I think I’d try a quality medium weight bristol paper.

The first thing I did was to tape off the area on the paper that I wanted to paint. You can see I used blue painters tape.

The first thing I did was to tape off the area on the paper that I wanted to paint. You can see I used blue painters tape.

The envelopes I’ve been painting are A-7 envelopes and are designed to fit a card (or piece of paper) that is 5″ by 7″. So that’s the size I cut my papers. Then I used either blue painters tape (like in the photo) or transparent removable tape (not shown). I think artists tape would work better, but I don’t have any in my studio right now. I tend to work with what’s available at the moment I get my inspiration.

I painted gold over the orange, just as I did when I made my envelope.

I painted gold liquid acrylic over the orange of the Copic marker, just as I did when I made my envelope.

I taped off section of the paper a little over 1/2″ wide. Then I painted colors and or patterns that I used when making the envelope.

And while the gold paint was still wet I added the hot pink paint in some areas.

And while the gold paint was still wet I added the hot pink paint in some areas.

There was a deckle edge on some of the watercolor papers, so I taped off just the edge and painted it a coordinating color.

I painted the deckle edge on this watercolor paper the same color as the background on the envelope. I also painted a decoration that reminded me of the flower petals on the envelope.

I painted the deckle edge on this watercolor paper the same color as the background on the envelope. I also painted a decoration that reminded me of the flower petals on the envelope.

Just painting a deckle edge a coordinating color of an envelope could be just enough to make beautiful coordinating stationery. That would be simple and elegant (and a lot less work).

For the coordinating stationery here, I painted the background color of the envelope to the left of the patterned stipe. There are lots of options.

For the coordinating stationery here, I painted the background color of the envelope to the left of the patterned stipe. There are lots of options.

I didn’t match the envelope exactly. I just tried do something that had a similar feel and color so it felt like the stationery and envelope went together.

Here is another envelope where I colored the strip to the left of the patterned stripe on the coordinating notepaper.

Here is another envelope where I colored the strip to the left of the patterned stripe on the coordinating notepaper.

While I could have made a traditional notecard that’s blank inside, I decided to have just a single piece of paper. I can write my notes on one or both sides of the paper. I used a somewhat heavy paper, so the writing won’t show through the other side of the paper.

This should be titled "Pretty in Pink"

This should be titled “Pretty in Pink”

Since this flower with the black background was so dramatic, I had to come up with a design that looked dramatic too. I ended up putting a black stripe on each side of the pattern, along with gold dots that I also used on the envelope.

Since this envelope with the black background is so dramatic, I had to come up with a design that looked dramatic too. I ended up putting a black stripe on each side of the pattern, along with gold dots that I also used on the envelope.

This notecard shows how I plan on writing to my friends by writing their name in a coordinating color.

This notecard shows how I plan on writing to my friends by writing their name in a coordinating color.

This notecard has a painted deckle edge the same color as the background on the envelope.

Another example of a notecard with a painted deckle edge the same color as the background on the envelope.

Play and enjoy!

Here’s to happy letter writing, Candy

 

Studio Snapshot – More Paper Lotus Flowers

This past week, in addition to making flower envelopes (Flower Envelopes – The Process), I had a request from the Rogue Gallery for more of my Lotus Flowers. I just found some beautiful papers in my stash that I wanted to play with, so it was an easy decision to make them into Lotus Flowers.

This Japanese Paper made a beautiful Paper Lotus Flower.

This Japanese paper made a beautiful Paper Lotus Flower.

I never know for sure which papers will look great when made into Lotus Flowers. Sometimes I get a wonderful surprise, like with the Japanese paper above.

Some of the Paper Lotus Flowers I made for the Rogue Gallery.

Some of the Paper Lotus Flowers I made for the Rogue Gallery.

The next three Paper Lotus Flowers are also made from papers I hadn’t tried before. I like the way they came out too.

This yellow and orange with a paisley-like pattern made a gorgeous Paper Lotus Flower.

This yellow and orange paper with a paisley-like pattern made a gorgeous Paper Lotus Flower.

The leaf patterns on this paper are lovely for this Paper Lotus Flower.

The leaf patterns in pink, teal and gold on this paper are lovely for this Paper Lotus Flower.

Another great looking Paper Lotus Flower, this time with bronze colored leaves.

Another great looking Paper Lotus Flower, this time with bronze colored leaves.

I don't remember if I ever made this paper into a Paper Lotus flower. I love how delicate it looks.

I don’t remember if I ever made this paper into a Paper Lotus flower. I love how delicate it looks.

This peacock feather paper is a favorite of mine for making Paper Lotus Flowers.

This peacock feather paper is a favorite of mine for making Paper Lotus Flowers.

 

This is another favorite paper to make my Paper Lotus Flowers. I found this paper at the University of Oregon Bookstore.

This is another favorite paper to make my Paper Lotus Flowers. I found this paper at the University of Oregon Bookstore many years ago.

Another new paper for my Paper Lotus Flowers.

Another new paper for my Paper Lotus Flowers.

Here is the link to the post I did showing the process of how I make my Paper Lotus Flowers:
Steps To Making A Paper Lotus Flower

Enjoy, Candy

 

Flower Envelopes – The Process

In April, which was National Letter Writing Month, I wrote a letter a day and sent it in an envelope that I either made or decorated. About halfway through the month I made an envelope with a flower on the front which ended up being the first of a series of flower envelopes. I’m still making them, trying something a little different with each one.

One of several flower envelopes that will be sent out in the mail tomorrow.

This flower envelope will be sent out in the mail tomorrow.

These envelopes have gotten rave reviews from my friends and fans. So, I decided to share the process I go through.

These 15 photos show the evolution of a single flower envelope. For this envelope I decided to see what I could do with I had a black background. I like the result.

These 15 photos show the evolution of a single flower envelope. For this envelope I decided to see what I could do with I had a black background. I like the result.

I try and vary something with each envelope I make. For the above envelope, I wanted to see how a flower would look with a black background.

I love how this flower envelope seems to glow.

I love how this flower envelope seems to glow.

Each time I get a new Copic marker, I try it out to see how it will look as a background for one of my flower envelopes.

I spilled gold acrylic ink on this envelope after I had colored the background, but not the flower. I wiped the gold paint evenly over the entire envelope and it developed a wonderful patina. It even showed through after I painted the flower petals. Happy accident!

I spilled gold acrylic ink on this envelope after I had colored the background, but not the flower. I wiped the gold paint evenly over the entire envelope and it developed a wonderful patina. Happy Accident!

The gold sparkle on the above “Happy Accident” flower envelope doesn’t show on the photo above, but it looks marvelous. I hate to part with this one. I am going to create a similar one before I put this in the mail.

I love experimenting with colors I would not normally use together as in this flower envelope.

I love experimenting with colors I would not normally use together as in this flower envelope.

One of the great things about playing with these envelopes is that I can experiment with unusual (for me) color combinations. The above envelope has a violet that looks a bit gray. I would never put that color with a peachy color, but somehow it works. I never would have known without experimenting.

Another flower envelope that will go in the mail tomorrow.

Another flower envelope that will go in the mail tomorrow.

Believe it or not, the two flower envelopes above have same background. It’s amazing how colors look different depending on the colors around them.

Purple, orange, pink and blue? I just had to try this unusual combination and I like it for this flower envelope.

Purple, orange, pink and blue? I just had to try this unusual combination and I like it for this flower envelope.

Because envelopes aren’t works of art that I put a frame on, I feel the freedom to experiment and play more than when I am trying to make a finished piece of art.

Here I tried having the background petals darker and the foreground petals lighter. I did the opposite on Kate's and Karen's flower envelopes.

Here I tried having the background petals darker and the foreground petals lighter. I did the opposite on Kate’s and Karen’s flower envelopes.

I have eleven envelopes going out by this weekend as part of an envelope exchange. It’s been fun to play with so many different ideas.

This flower envelope will need more stamps as it is going to France.

This flower envelope will need more stamps as it is going to France.

I still have a log list of people I want to write to, so I am sure I will be making more flower envelopes for quite a while. It’s so much fun (even though they usually take 2 to 3 hours each to make).

This is my demonstration envelope ready to go out in the mail. The address will be written in white.

This is my demonstration envelope ready to go out in the mail. The address will be written in white.

To see more of my envelopes, check out these blog post:
Studio Snapshot – Flower Envelope Series

Enjoy, Candy

Studio Snapshot – Congratulations Accordion Card Books

This week I realized that a year ago, I was attending my niece’s graduation from USC where she received a Master’s Degree in Strategic Public Relations. That reminded me that it’s graduation time again. So, I decided I needed to make some more of my “congratulations” card books.

Congratulations Accordion Card Book. Is it a card or a book? It's both.

Congratulations Accordion Card Book. Is it a card or a book? It’s both.

I call it a card book because it’s really both a card as well as an accordion book. It’s a really unique graduation card for a graduate. And, it can be used for lots more occasions than just graduations.

Three Congratulations Accordion Card Books shown open, one closed and one watercolor paper with the congratulations written on it before being painted and decorated.

Three Congratulations Accordion Card Books shown open, one closed and one watercolor paper with the congratulations written on it before being painted and decorated.

I made a number of these this week in various colors. The accordion part of the book is made from watercolor paper. I outline the letters with a permanent marker, then use watercolor and blend the colors as I paint the letters.

Close up of one of the Congratulations Accordion Card Books.

Close up of one of the Congratulations Accordion Card Books.

After the watercolor is dry, I embellish the “congratulations.”  Finally, I cover the book board with one of my paste papers that matches the colors of the letters.

I love all the different paste paper covers for these Congratulations Accordion Card Books.

I love all the different paste paper covers for these Congratulations Accordion Card Books.

Congratulations Accordion Card Book.

Congratulations Accordion Card Book.

Congratulations Accordion Card Book.

Congratulations Accordion Card Book.

You can see more of my card books on my blog post: Studio Snapshot – Accordion Books.

Enjoy, Candy

Earth Spirit Vessels – The Process

I’m finally getting back to working on my Earth Spirit Vessels. Making a vessel is actually quite a long process. First I have to decide on my colors. Sometimes I paint my paper (usually paste papers of my chosen colors) and sometimes I use the archival papers without painting them.

Earth Spirit Vessel, Gratitude, is made from 504 pieces of hand folded paper, 196 of which are blue and silver hand painted paste paper.

Earth Spirit Vessel, Gratitude, is made from 504 pieces of hand folded paper, 196 of which are blue and silver hand painted paste papers.

After choosing my colors, I cut my paper from its original 19″ by 25″ into 2″ by 4″ pieces. I take 25 of those papers and choose the quotes and inspirations and prayers relating to Mother Earth and Nature that I want to include in that piece. Then I write those quotes in calligraphy on the 25 pieces of paper and take photographs of the calligraphy.

One of the pieces of calligraphy that is folded into Earth Spirit Vessel, Gratitude.

One of the pieces of calligraphy that is folded into Earth Spirit Vessel, Gratitude.

Once folded and made a part of the vessel, these quotes, inspirations and prayers are not meant to be seen or read, but to be embodied into the spirit of the vessel itself.

These are all the calligraphy quotes that are included within Earth Spirit, Vessel, Gratitude.

These are all the calligraphy quotes that are included within Earth Spirit, Vessel, Gratitude.

Then it’s time to fold the paper. Each piece of paper is folded 9 times. I have to space the folding out over many days to avoid injury to my hands from the repetitive motions of folding so many papers.

Folded and non folded painted paste paper waiting to be made into an Earth Spirit Vessel.

Folded and non-folded painted paste paper waiting to be made into Earth Spirit Vessel, Gratitude. Each piece of paper starts out as a 2″ by 4″ rectangle.

Finally it’s time to build the vessel. I build one row at a time. After placing and carefully adjusting a row, I then go around and glue each piece of folded paper in place. I can make vessels without glue, but then it’s easy to transform their shape as well as to take apart. So far, no one has wanted a vessel that hasn’t been glued.

This is the beginning of Earth Spirit Vessel, Gratitude. This shows what the inside of the vessel looks like.

This is the beginning of Earth Spirit Vessel, Gratitude. This shows what the inside of the vessel looks like.

This is a close up of the inside of Earth Spirit Vessel, Gratitude.

This is a close up of the inside of Earth Spirit Vessel, Gratitude.

After finishing placing and then gluing each piece in place, I make a bottom for each vessel out of a slab of burl wood. I get my burl wood from It’s A Burl in Kerby, Oregon. I then glue my burl wood bottom in place and sign the piece.

This photo is looking directly into Earth Spirit, Balance. You can see the burl wood that is the bottom of the vessel.

This photo is looking directly into Earth Spirit, Balance. You can see the burl wood that is the bottom of the vessel.

After the vessel is finished, I photograph it and make a 6″ by 6″ documentation to go with the finished vessel. I include photographs of the calligraphy that has been folded into the vessel, a photograph of the vessel, the name of the vessel, the number of pieces of folded papers used to make the vessel and other documentation for that piece.

This is the documentation that goes with the Earth Spirit Vessel, Forest Tapestry.

This is the documentation that was made for Earth Spirit Vessel, Forest Tapestry.

The process can take a couple of weeks up to a few months from start to finish.

This Earth Spirit Vessel contains 1419 pieces of hand folded paper.

This Earth Spirit Vessel, Broken Wing, contains 1419 pieces of hand folded paper. It was a custom order is the largest vessel I have made to date

Other blog posts on my Earth Spirit Vessels:
Studio Snapshot – New Earth Spirit Vessels
Earth Spirit Vessels From My Paste Paper Show
New Earth Spirit Vessels
Earth Spirit Vessels

Enjoy, Candy

Studio Snapshot – More Paper Wrapped Pencils

I’ve not been able to spend much time in my studio this past week due to my trip to Edmonds, Washington (see Thursday’s post: Four Glorious Days of Calligraphy) and showing at ArtFest, a benefit for the Children’s Miracle Network. Still, I did manage to start to make some more paper wrapped pencils. My pencils have been selling well in both my studio at the Ashland Art Center and the Rogue Gallery in Medford.

Here are the paper wrapped pencils I made this past week.

Here are the paper wrapped pencils I made this past week.

Sometimes I work in my studio doing new and interesting things, like my flower envelope series, and sometimes I make more of things I’ve made many times before. This week I’ve been doing the latter. Yet, I still enjoy seeing the transformation of plain pencils into wonderful paper covered pencils.

Presentation matters. Here are 3 pencils wrapped in an Italian paper and tied with raffia. They look elegant.

Presentation matters. Here are 3 pencils wrapped in an Italian paper and tied with raffia. They look elegant, even though they’re “only” pencils.

Paper wrapped pencils. The set in the middle of a crossword puzzle is the most popular of all the pencils I have made.

Paper wrapped pencils. The set in the middle, made from a crossword puzzle, is the most popular of all the pencils I have made.

Paper wrapped pencils. All sorts of paper can be used to wrap pencils, though I suggest starting with a thin paper for your first set.

Paper wrapped pencils. All sorts of paper can be used to wrap pencils, though I suggest starting with a thin paper for your first set.

Paper wrapped pencils. Red and purple are popular colors, but they come in second after the crossword puzzle pencils.

Paper wrapped pencils. Red and purple are popular colors, but they come in second after the crossword puzzle pencils.

DIY instructions to make your own are on my blog post: Stocking Stuffers: Paper Wrapped Pencils.

Enjoy, Candy

Four Glorious Days of Calligraphy

I just got back from 4 glorious days of playing and studying calligraphy. It’s a 9 hour drive (each way) from Ashland, Oregon to Edmonds, Washington where I attended Letters of Joy, a mini calligraphy conference, and a 2-day workshop on the bone alphabet. It was so worth the long trip!

From my class Calligraphy Recycle: Party in an Envelope by Gretchen Ehrsam.

By Gretchen Ehrsam, from her class, Calligraphy Recycle: Party in an Envelope.

Letters of Joy started Friday night with a presentation, Calligraphy Tips and Tricks, by Carol DuboschWe didn’t even need to take notes because Carol gave all of us a sheet of paper which included her tips and tricks she demonstrated. This paper was designed in such a way that we were able to fold it and make it into a small book. Some of these tips and tricks may be showing up here in my blog after I try them out and play with them.

I had not done copperplate before, but after taking Lee Ann Clark's class on Classy Caps, I'll now be studying that alphabet too.

I had not done copperplate before, but after taking Lee Ann Clark’s class on Classy Caps, I’ll be studying copperplate now.

Saturday included many mini workshops. There were so many possibilities, it was really hard to choose which classes I wanted to take. I eventually signed up for Classy Caps by Lee Ann Clark, Calligraphy Recycle: Party in an Envelope by Gretchen Ehrsam and Jubilee Script Meets Parallel Pen by Carol DuBosch.

Example of Jubilee Script by Carol Dubosch.

Example of Jubilee Script by Carol Dubosch. I can see this script showing up on some of my envelopes in the near future.

These were some of the handmade pens sold by Tim's Pens. They made from recycled materials and create a variety of different widths of pen strokes.

These are handmade pens made and sold by Tim of Tim’s Pens. Made from recycled materials, each pen makes a variety of widths of pen strokes.

Throughout the two days there were many vendors from whom we could purchase supplies and other goodies. I scored some vintage pointed pen nibs from Black Thumb who also sells vintage ink pots.

Black Thumb sells vintage ink pots as well as vintage pen nibs.

Black Thumb sells vintage ink pots as well as vintage pen nibs.

Sunday and Monday I took a calligraphy workshop on the Bone Alphabet from Carol DuBosch. Bone is a contemporary alphabet known as BONE because of the bone-like shape of its basic stroke. It’s a wonderful exercise in pen-manipulation and designing the spaces within and around the letters.

Carol DuBosch demonstrating the bone alphabet.

Carol DuBosch demonstrating the bone alphabet.

A close up of Carol DuBosch's demonstrate sheet of the bone alphabet.

A close up of Carol DuBosch’s demonstration sheet of the bone alphabet.

This was the first time I went to Letters of Joy. It won’t be the last. It was great fun!

Enjoy, Candy

 

Studio Snapshot – Folded Boxes

Those of you following my blog know that I just mailed out a bunch of little boxes in a clear plastic bottle (DIY – How To Make A Plastic Bottle Into An Envelope). For that project I made a bunch of small folded boxes out of some of my paste papers.

I couldn't stop at just a few boxes. I had to make all sorts of sizes and colors using my paste papers.

I couldn’t stop at just a few boxes. I had to make all sorts of sizes and colors using my paste papers.

After getting out all my supplies, I just couldn’t stop at just a few boxes. So, I kept going and made quite a number of boxes in a variety of sizes.

These were the size of the boxes that I put into the clear plastic bottle I used as an envelope. You can see how small they are with my hand holding one.

These were the size of the boxes that I put into the clear plastic bottle I used as an envelope. You can see how small they are with my hand holding one.

Three sizes of boxes I made from my paste papers.

Three sizes of boxes I made from my paste papers.

Enjoy, Candy