WOYWW – OMG it has been so long…


Wow.  I can’t even think when was the last time I joined in with WOYWW.  I think about it often, read the posts when I have the time, and miss the community that was built around it.

Medical issues forever altered life.  Now there is the Covid.  Ugh.  It’s all just a bit much.

I won’t dwell on that.  There is little point.  ALL the WOYWW folk have had their struggles over the years.  Some soldier on, some drop out, drop back in, drop out forever.  We all deal in different ways.

When we moved, and I was diagnosed with a debilitating and rare myositis, my strength and energy levels were nil.  Getting up to my craft room was harder and harder.  I basically shifted completely over to knitting.  Something I could do sitting on the sofa and even on very low energy days.  I recently had a small window of improvement (sadly, now heading in the other direction, but with another new treatment to try perhaps soon) and it made me anxious to take up my art journaling again.

AGES ago (2018!) I made a journal based around inspirational quotes to do with strength and illness and the like.  It was prompted by the Permission to Play workshop by Carolyn Dube (there is a link in the sidebar if anyone is interested – I loved it BTW!) and you can see more about that here. That was really one of the last times I did anything arty.

Last week I made TWO (!) pages.  Wow am I out of practice.  The first one had a couple of elements I really liked but overall was a hot mess.

Too many colours, too dark, overwhelming text… I loved the stencil I cut from a magazine image.  Just lucky the wingspan matched the sides of the page pretty well! The figure also will work as a mask.

I scanned the photo and changed the contrast and saturation before printing on heavy cardstock to make a more substantial stencil.   The other item I loved was the stamp. Made up of the numbers for the whole family’s birthdays, cut from sticky-backed fun foam and mounted on a strip of plastic placemat.  Some of the numbers are a little wonky but overall I love it and expect I will use it a lot.

Those of a sensitive disposition, click away now.  Warning of a rude word on what I see as the better of the two pages:

Happy with the more limited colour palette, the limited stencils and stamps, the increased white space.  Not perfect, nothing to crow about, but not bad and not hot mess.  A few more pages and I will reclaim my style…maybe.  Pretty sure the leafy stamp is from a Scrap Magic crop class about a million years ago, the Anyone Home? bit is a section of a Teesha Moore stamp, the circle of numbers is from…Banana Frog, maybe? The Mona Lisa is from ….can’t recall the name! Some mail order only online stamp maker.

Not having taken part in a long, long while, I will have to see what happens as I try to comment.  I have a dim recollection that one of the reasons I stopped was commenting issues, but I’m hoping that has been sorted.  It will be quite nice to catch up on the work of some of my favourite WOYWWers. Fingers crossed.


26 thoughts on “WOYWW – OMG it has been so long…

  1. Very nice to see you, Mary Anne, but I am so sorry to hear about your health issues. It sounds quite awful. I hope you are getting good treatment. A whole-food plant-based diet is very good for any autoimmune conditions and you might want to look into this – plenty of info online. Your projects are absolutely gorgeous and I join with the others in saying how I like the first one – nothing wrong with it as far as I can see! I have to spend a fair amount of time resting with my feet up and love to knit as well – I do crochet and embroidery too. My actual desk has been somewhat neglected of late.

    Happy belated WOYWW,
    Shoshi #15

  2. Welcome back! Sorry to hear about the illness though – here’s hoping the new treatment helps.
    Well, I LOVE the first page. In fact I thought the lettering was brilliant cut from text like that – and so huge – it really makes a statement and takes away the dark background. But importantly it speaks to the viewer.
    Love the idea of the foam numbers for the stamping of birthdates – quite a great tip there.
    Can see where you are with the second page but I must say I prefer the first one. Strange!
    Hugs, Neet 12 xx

  3. Popped back because I noticed you said you didn’t know Stampers Grove. They haven’t been doing the shows for too long but that’s how I got to know them. It’s a family run business in Scotland and they are a lovely couple but best of all they post stuff out really quickly so you’re not waiting for ages for products to arrive and their prices are good too. Have a lovely week and hope to see you next woyww. Hugs Angela xXx

  4. So glad you have made it back Mary Anne. I actually love the first page, the text stands out so well. Hope you feel up to joining us again soon. Stay safe and happy WOYWW. Sarah #3

  5. Great idea cutting out the shape from a magazine, I shall look again at magazines for possibilities. Sorry to hear your illness is taking a turn for the worse. Angela #27

  6. I really liked your latest creations. I too have problems and haven’t been in the craft room. The always home is my favorite. I think it’s beautifully done.

  7. Happy to read your post. Be well. Petrina-Upstate New York

  8. Hi! great pages ~ I love the number stamp you created. ~ Blessings & well wishes

  9. My prayers are with you. Cool that you made a stencil from a magazine page! Colorful pages!
    Hope you feel better.
    Carol N #22

  10. Pretty, Love all the numbers on the body, we have an 11, 12, 13, 14 in birthdays at our home some different months though. What kind of paper was used on the second project? Looks like tissue paper.

    • The pages of my journal are actually brown paper bag paper (Primark bags I think) that I crumpled, dunked in water, then hung up to dry. They have a crinkled sort of texture, that I gesso over. The face is stamped on deli paper, actually, then stuck on the page. Hope that helps!

  11. I remember ! Sorry about your health issues and will pray for better days.

  12. You have helped me in the post with book folding questions and I appreciate what you do. You are always assisting people, now it’s time to focus on yourself. Life is precious, do what makes you happy without sacrificing yourself. We will all be here rooting for you. Take time for yourself I love your positive spirit. You are a force to be reckoned with.. I wish you good wishes and improved health.
    Carolyn Pollock

  13. Lovely to see you and pleased you’re getting back into the journalling, loving the pages. Hope to see you again soon. Sending woyww hugs, Angela x16x

  14. Hi Mary Anne, I was really pleased to see your name when I linked up! It’s been so long! So sorry to hear of your health issues, life can be a bitch, I agree. I smiled when you said you’d been doing a lot of knitting, I always remember Knitted Knockers when I think of you, it always makes me smile. Love both versions of the journal page, I ‘get’ the first one reflects the dark place you were in at the time. Both are equally stunning. Stay safe, have a lovely week, Hugs, Shaz #5 X

  15. Me again – here is the link I used. The masks are good for small to medium faces, I added a centimetre to width and height measurements.
    LLJ xxx

  16. How nice to see a post from you after such a long time. I’m sorry your health issues are not allowing you to do what you love, but hopefully the new meds will help. Your pages are just beautiful and in spite of your issues, you still make some wonderful creations! Take good care of yourself and know that we’re all grateful to see you posting again! Hugs!

  17. So sorry to hear of your health problems but it is lovely to see you back. Really hoping the good days outnumber the bad ones for you.

  18. Well, how lovely to see you on the desks again Mary Anne, but I am very sorry to heat about your health. I hadn’t even heard of your condition but it sounds so debilitating. Your layout does really link into it all, i think the words are so appropriate. I can’t remember the link I used for the dart pattern but there are loads on YouTube – it was presented by a young Japanese guy. It’s quite simple to make (must be if I can understand the tutorial, lol!!)
    Hugs LLJ 7 xxx

  19. As another person with health issues in the same category, I know the fatigue and lack of strength and the roller-coaster ride all too well. Remember, your body’s trying to get you well from something, and while your immune system has the wrong target, it’s really working its arse off for you. Do what you can, as often as you can; it’s critical to maintaining strength during flareups and rebuilding between them so that you can avoid being wheelchair-bound or bed-bound.

    Your pages are gorgeous, and knowing the struggle it is for me to get out physical art supplies and still have energy to put them away when I’m done for the day makes them all the more beautiful in my eyes. It might be worth trying to have a small basket of art supplies or even a sketchbook and colored pencils near where you “nest” on moderately bad days–the ones where you’re capable of doing something, if you could only get to the craft room; the act of creating is critical for me to stay positive, and can sometimes let me forget the pain and fatigue for a couple of hours. (I opt for primarily digital creation these days; it takes less to get supplies out and put them away, though it does lose the tactile benefits.)

  20. Really impressed by your pages – especially making the stencil/mask and stamp of numbers. Thanks for the ideas!
    Keep well…
    Happy woyww! Susan #8

  21. Morning Mary, WoywW waits for us all no matter the time that does pass. Fabulous journal pages, doesn’t look like you have lost any of your creative energy to me, very powerful words. Take care, stay strong & happy WoywW Tracey #6

  22. Mary Anne what a pleasure to see your name on the link list! It seems an age and I’m perfectly sure that if you’re not in the best of health, lockdown and Covid and made ages feel like aeons. So sorry to hear of your diagnosis, of all the people in the world to be slowed down, you would be way down my list. You took such great care to alter your life habits before you moved too. You may stamp your feet in rage, it’s not fair. And….that’s why your page looks like it does, slightly complicated and a bit dark…I must say I think it’s a stunner and says a deal about things.
    Blogger changed things up again very recently, I haven’t heard of WordPress users on WOYWW having trouble commenting but nothing surprises me and it will be interesting to hear from others, which I’m sure you will. Enjoy the browsing, nonetheless!

  23. Morning Mary. So good to see you today. I’m saddened you have had such major health issues, and hope the new meds will be able to help. Actually, I like the first of your two pages the most – although I enjoyed the second, too – yes, even the rude word 🙂
    Take care of yourself. God bless.
    Margaret #2

  24. wow, Mary good to see you again! sorry to hear about your ongoing health issues though Great pages! Helen ‘#1

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