Wednesday, November 30, 2011

here's to you, marshmallow man

another thing i ♥ about Christmas is building a big snowman in the front yard.
i remember fun times as a kid in indiana trying to outdo my brothers by making a snowman that was bigger than theirs (which wasn't too hard, because they usually spent all their time throwing snowballs at me instead of building.....).
of course, living in florida, we don't see too many snowmen in front yards, so i think the next best thing is stacking three extra large marshmallows on top of each other.....a little melted chocolate in between the layers will usually hold them together. probably knew it wouldn't take me long to somehow bring
this conversation around to the subject of chocolate.....right....?  :))

{artwork created using koi watercolors, micron pens, graphite pencil}

Monday, November 28, 2011

inspiration monday

the holiday season is upon us, and i can't think of a more inspiring time of year!  to celebrate all the things i love about the season, i thought i'd create a little's how i did it:  take a piece of medium weight paper (i'm using arches textwove that measures approximately 4"x20").......

then fold it in half, and fold it in half again accordion-style until you have a booklet with four sections.
(you can adjust this any way you like and it will still work.....use any size paper, and the more you fold it in half, the more sections, or "pages" you'll have!)

now add some lettering and illustration to your front cover.....

along with some color around the edges, if you like. 
(i'm using some green pan pastel here)

and before you know it, you've created a cover for your new accordion book!

when you open your book up, there will be lots of empty space smiling at you, so
go ahead and start filling it up using your favorite supplies!

i added this Christmas tree on one of the paper folds (because i truly love all those twinkly little white lights!).   i think it'll look kind of neat when the book is folded.......

because you'll be able to see half the tree on each page!

it's going to be fun filling up all that blank space by adding a little bit of artwork here and there throughout the holidays.....and it will be a great way to be creative for just ten or fifteen minutes at a time!

welcome to the holiday season......the most wonderfully inspiring time of the year!!

{this accordion book was created using arches textwove paper, koi watercolors,
micron pens, pan pastel, graphite pencil, uniball signo white gel pen}

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

pyramids and priorities

 i shared this on my blog a couple of years's my own Thanksgiving version of the  traditional food pyramid, the recommended guide which suggests we eat less of what's at the top, and more of what's at the bottom.   which kinda explains where turkey is on my priority list, as opposed to pumpkin pie with whipped cream, sweet potatoes, and you guessed it:  chocolate.....heeheehee

tomorrow, we celebrate Thanksgiving here in America, and i just want you to know that i'm SO very grateful for you!  thank you for taking the time to stop by here and say hello.....i appreciate your comments and encouragement so much!  i'm going to take a few bloggy days off this week to spend with my family, but i'll see you on monday!!

many blessings to you and your sweet family!!

{food pyramid created using watercolor pencils, micron pens, 
waterbrush, graphite pencil}

Monday, November 21, 2011

inspiration monday

here's a fun way to challenge yourself by creating something with only three supplies......
you'll need a piece of paper, a pencil, and an eraser.
with your pencil, lightly draw some simple shapes onto your paper (i've drawn letters, but you can use any shape.....a flower, butterfly, circles, squares, abstract shapes, etc.).  
you can also use a stencil to pencil in your shape!

now add some texture by drawing some scribble lines all around the outside of your shape......

keep adding lots and lots and lots of little scribble lines!
(you can make some areas darker for great shadowing effects, too!)

and when you're done, you've got something that looks a little complicated, 
but it's actually quite simple!

but just to take it one step further, let's add a tiny bit of color (i know i'm breaking the
three-supply-keep-it-simple rule,  but curiosity got the best of me!).
i'm using a yellow colored pencil, but you can use whatever inspires you! 

and now i'm adding a small bit of orange colored pencil, too.
(i think the supply count is up to five now.....)

 i just added a few details here and there to keep it simple, but the sky's the limit here!
sometimes it's fun to let yourself be inspired with just a handful of supplies.....
see what you can come up with by using only three five supplies!!

{materials:  arches textwove (velin) paper, mechanical pencil,
white vinyl eraser, derwent coloursoft pencils (orange and deep cadmium)}

Friday, November 18, 2011

candy store

                                                      Source: via Lori on Pinterest

i hope you have a kids-in-a-candy-store kind of weekend......
and i sincerely hope you find a bin of chocolate that you can do a nose dive into!!

enjoy!!  :))

Wednesday, November 16, 2011


i don't quite know what it is, but i'm feeling quite jubilant today!  maybe it's because it's wednesday (getting close to the weekend, woo hoo!), or maybe it's because my chocolate stash has been re-stocked with a very nice vintage of 72% bittersweet goodness.....

or maybe it's because for the first time in a long time i pulled out one of my favorite lettering pentel color brush (it's like a waterbrush, but it's pre-filled with ink, and the nylon brush tip is nice and springy and always comes back to a fabulous point!)!   yep, maybe that's what it is.....catching up with an old lettering friend always makes me woo-hoo-orange-and-red-bittersweet-choco-happy!!

{journal page created using a pentel black color brush, koi watercolor,
micron pen and graphite pencil}

Monday, November 14, 2011

inspiration monday

i can't think of a more perfect way to end a wonderful pottery barn journal adventure than by adding this final sketch of a fabulous little garden bistro!

a quaint little bistro tucked away in a secret alcove somewhere (maybe even your back porch!).....with aromatic lemon trees growing out of ornamental clay pots, placed next to stylish chairs that are adorned with orange-stripey cushions to sit on.   and it's all so inspiring, why not indulge in a special little drinkie (you know, the kind that comes in a special little wine-shaped bottle?!).

 many of you have commented that you'd like to see this journal from cover-to-cover, so i made this can watch it here in larger format, if you like!

thank you, pottery barn, for the many wonderful hours of enjoyment and inspiration you've given me in creating this special journal!  and thanks to all of you bloggy sweeties for inspiring me to create the video!!  xox

{journal page created using koi watercolors, micron pens, graphite pencils, 
uniball signo white gel pen}

Friday, November 11, 2011

101 gifts

                                                         Source: via Lori on Pinterest

i hope you have a fabulous weekend filled with some time to yourself
to put on your favorite cozy slippers, grab a nice mug of hot chocolate, 
and find some great ideas for the perfect handmade gift!!
(click here!!)

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

vintage lockers

there are only two blank pages left in my pottery barn journal
and i'm chomping at the bit to get them filled!!  
today, i couldn't resist adding a set of vintage lockers to my wish list......

they have that special creamy white, time-worn, weathered look that can only be accomplished with years of exposure to sun and sea air (or maybe a few days with very experienced faux painter!),  and there's all kinds of room inside to store secret stuff.

but what i really went crazy for are these stenciled numbers......i just love simple little details like that, and these chunky numbers make me want to label everything in my house! 
 but for now, i'm off to sink myself into my catalogs and choose something pottery-barn-special to add to my last blank journal page !!  woo hoo!!

{materials:  koi watercolor, derwent inktense pencils, micron pens, 
graphite pencils, uniball signo white gel pen}

Monday, November 7, 2011

inspiration monday

when i created my pottery barn journal,  i used this tutorial by teesha moore (she has a great method for taking a large sheet of watercolor paper and transforming it into a 16-page journal!).  as a part of her design, there are little flaps that measure about 2.25" on the inside front and back covers.  and every time i pulled out my journal to fill another page with pottery barn goodness,  i wondered to myself what in the world i was going to put on those skinny little pages.  and now that i only have two blank pages left in my journal (woo hoo!), i was getting a little nervous about the "skinny little pages" thing, because i still didn't have any ideas.  but, thankfully, inspiration gave me a hand this past weekend.....

and i realized that these skinny little pages were the perfect spot to include an explanation for why i created the journal in the first place......

a place to give inspiration the spotlight!

and while the front-cover-flap was purely about my inspiration, i added some other
details to the back-cover-flap......

because if i don't have it written down, 
there's no way i'll ever remember what materials i used!! 

and since inspiration was giving me a hand, i decided to go ahead and put a little something on the back cover of my journal, too
 (this was another space i had no idea what to do with!).  

even though this is meant to be the back of my pottery barn house, i think it kind of looks like it should be the front of the house.  but then i decided that many times when we find a place we really love, we usually head towards the back door........because that's where we feel comfortable enough to go ahead and hang our heart on the door!

{supplies:  koi watercolors, derwent inktense pencils, micron pens,
graphite pencil}

p.s.  the doors to the letterLAB open today! 
time to have some cursive fun!!   woo hoo!!

Friday, November 4, 2011

liquid sunshine

i hope your weekend is filled with 
exciting things like yellow ochre, permanent yellow deep, aureolin,
new gamboge,  cadmium orange hue, and naples yellow......


Thursday, November 3, 2011

giveaway winner!

in my heart of hearts, i never once dreamed there would be such a wonderful response to my giveaway!  thank you SO much for participating, for your lovely comments, and for your visits to my blog!   when it comes to bloggy sweeties, you are the best of the best, and i appreciate you more than you'll ever know (insert enormously big hugs here!!)!!

for the giveaway, i paid a little visit to mr., and he chose lucky number 17.....

and that means that beth over at simply B will be joining us in the letterLAB!  woo hoo!
congratulations, beth!  i've sent you an e-mail to the address you listed in your comment!

and for all of you who have already registered, thank you from the top, middle and bottom of my heart.....i'll see you in the LAB on monday!!  xox

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

mountain view

my little dutch sweetie treated me to a getaway this past weekend,
so we traded in our seaside view for some fresh mountain air.
to say that the scenery was gorgeous would be an understatement.....

and there were reminders of autumn everywhere.....

along with pure eye candy, mother-nature-style.

and speaking of mother nature, she surprised us with this on saturday morning!

but further down the mountain, it was life as usual.

and with all that mountain inspiration, these little sweeties caught my eye......

so i thought i'd add them to my journal to remind me that there's so much beauty in this world.....
and i'm so blessed to have these opportunities to go out and enjoy it!
(thank you, little dutch sweetie! xox)

{this page was created in my strathmore visual journal for mixed media using
derwent inktense pencils, waterbrush,  micron pens, and a 4B graphite pencil}

{photos of our trip to banner elk, north carolina}

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