Another quote, another art journal page

Still pulling my text when I feel the pull of my art journal and it’s working. To be fair I am mostly working in my lovely little Roben-Marie journal, or sometimes the other small one, but I am pretty sure one day soon I’ll want to do a page in one of my larger ones.

I split the quote bins into longer quotes and single words. I can pull one word or many words as I like, when I draw from that pot.

I also am working on using a lot of my scraps, or collage fodder, from a basket beside my desk. It’s quite full. I dragged out these bits:

because I really liked the bright colours, but in the end I only used the cooler colours, since they worked with the background on the page already:

The shapes were very undefined and they worked perfectly to fill the open areas of one of my favourite letter stamps. And those worked well on the page.

The quote is altered from the original, which was From the outside, it often looks bewilderingly trivial, by inserting MY ART instead of the vague it. And it’s true. Often the art we make is considered trivial or pointless or even bad. But what is always worth remembering is that if you are driven to create art, whatever art you make is not trivial or pointless for YOU. And bad is in the eye of the beholder. If you think it is good, it is. If you think it is important, it is. If you think it had merit, if you think it helped you, if you think it gave you wings, it did. And at least you did it. That in and of itself is something. And maybe, even something big.

Be proud. And keep doing it.

I’m gonna link to the AJJ although not sure if I will link it or not – I’ve done quite a few this month and I don’t want to overstay my welcome LOL! At least this is going up on the last day of the month so maybe tomorrow, a new challenge limit me.


More words for Art Journals (or ATCs) – not overwhelmingly positive

Hands up if you work in your art journal to help you process things in your life that aren’t all fluffy bunnies and rainbows…. Yeah. Me too. In exploring all the pages I see here there and everywhere, I am struck by how many times I see a page with what appears to be a totally random word plunked down on it. I’ve done it too, plenty of times. Not so much recently but I have been guilty. Well, maybe not, actually. Scrolling back thru my pages I am hard pressed to find single word pages. The only one I found was this one, in all of my finished pages:

I do find some ATCs with things like ART and CREATE and BELIEVE. But positive words are not always the thing you need. Sometimes, I make a page and maybe the right word is PAIN or SCREAM or BOREDOM. And it is both a waste of time and a hassle to create a single word to print and add, or grab my stamps and stamp it out. Since I have been on a bit of kick, making words for my art journaling that I can draw from randomly, I decided to make a couple of pages of not very positive quotes and words. No up-lifting, not artistic really, some have a slight positive spin, but most are depicting ambivalence in the best case, or real anguish in the worst. You might find them useful, unless your art journal is more about the pretty and the positive. Print ant cut, but grab the actual 2-page PDF not this image!

I did them in two styles, the ones I generally prefer, which is blackout or typewriter. I hope you find a use for them.

As a side note, if you recall I mentioned some fab paper that I use for printing.

When printing my words to cut, I grabbed the wrong paper. As I had both, I thought the side-by-side comparison might interest you all.

I know which I prefer! I’ll add it to the AJJ more for the download than the page. The custom cut stencil is very much part of my style so I guess that works!


Another quote, another Art Journal page

Well, in the end I DID go back to the page I had flipped to in my small art journal, because the quote I had pulled was the right size for it:

This was one of those cases where the page was so highly decorated that it didn’t actually need much. I loved the bold black circles, and honed in on the word contained so I could focus on them. I used an old stamp I created, with numbers that make up all the birthdays in our family, to incorporate the paper tape binding a little bit:

I die cut a little bubble die and trimmed it into two clusters:

then smudged some Distress Oxide ink on it to make it stand out a bit better and placed them within two of those circles. I felt that went nicely with the quote.

Overall, I like it. At this point it is still all about getting into the habit of making pages regularly. I am happy to be making use of these long hoarded quotes, and I love that they are printed out and ready to go. I think I need to explore my saved files of quotes a bit more fully and prep some other sheets as well, some with different fonts, maybe some white writing on black, just to mix it up. Of course that sort of thing takes a bit of time to do so we’ll see if I manage it. It might make sense to do that first, so I don’t get tired of the same font and size as well, so making the challenge a little more … challenging!

We’ll see. If I do I’ll share.

And, yeah, one more for the AJJ! My style is still evolving and hard to pin down, even for me. LOL!


WOYWW 664 – not a lot better, sorry to say

Happy WOYWW again.

I realize you might think I mean ME and not my desk! No, I am feeling better, the IVIG is taking hold, but the desk? My word. Main desk:

Leftovers from my first AJ page in a while, and a new page I am considering working on. Lots of debris from the tag book and general rubbish. The other desk is maybe even worse!

What a crazy mess! The snarl in the middle is a bit of cranked-out knitting on the Addi 22 pin machine. Over in one of the knitting machine groups someone showed some “socks” (really a gathered tube) they had knitted, saying they had no problem knitting socks on the machine. I disagreed, and cranked that out to demonstrate what actual sock yarn would look like knitted on the machine. Cause I am a cranky cuss, and don’t think it is fair to imply this is possible, encourage someone to buy an expensive machine then have them find it is totally unsuitable for the intended task! I had to share a side-by-side comparison. I know which socks I’d wear.

You can also see peeping out the sheet of printable quotes I shared the other day. More on that in a bit. So I had a quick tidy up after snapping those shots. The main desk now has my selection of Art Journals with blank pages, because I realize some of the quotes would be too long to fit in the smallest ones, so depending on which one I pluck out, I may have to let that decide the journal I will work in!

I actually plucked out a short one but you can see many of them are quite wordy, like me! The side desk now only has the If you HAD to… cards. Blimey.

Humm. Well tap dancing only applies if you are mobile, so if I am sitting at my desk or on the sofa I am safe. If I’m tap dancing I’m burning those calories like crazy, right? And I suppose Ye would have to pay rent, and he’s rich, so I’d charge a LOT for that pouch rental. Not quite a win-win but no baby seals this time LOL!

So there you go. One more WOYWW down …..


My first AJ quote challenge page

So I pulled my first quote from my jar of printed quotes and it’s a good ‘un

I still had my envelope of scraps from the pleated tag book hanging about on my desk so that was where I drew my inspiration. I love hoe the little wings fit perfectly around the curve of the punched-out circle. Had it not had the second smaller circle punched out I might have tried to use the piece more as-is than I did.

I did a bit of stamping for more interest in the background, then added a different circle surround.

So far so good, I’m liking it. I stuck the quote to some black fun foam for a bit of dimension and stuck the snippets in place, weighing them down for a firm grip while I considered a bit of mark-making/doodling.

When I was done, I didn’t think I was DONE done, IYKWIM. It just needed something else.

I love this journal but sometimes I feel like I need to incorporate the brown paper tape binding bits into the page a little more so I added a few overlapping elements to try to do that:

and yeah, that I was happy with. I enjoyed the process and the slight challenge of working towards something that supports the quote. So I will do more of these I’m sure. At some point I will probably just make a page because I am feeling it, but for now it gets me creating and that is all I want. Hope you find the quotes interesting and if you use them, do drop me a comment with a link so I can have a look. If you missed it there is a download of two sheets to print and cut just a post back. Still exploring my style so I guess I’ll link to the Art Journal Journey again. It is frustrating that I can comment on so few of the other participants posts because of the need to sign in to Google to do it. Sounding like a bit of a broken record here, but there are so many ways to ensure little spam while allowing Open Id commenting it’s kinda a shame. But I guess others are as set in their ways as I am LOL!


Printable quotes for Art Journals

I’ve been tidying and sorting, both physical desk stuff (like sorting my mark-making stamps into a more usable system:

dragging out that art journal too, for a play

but also digital files. I decided to challenge myself on my next art journal pages. I guess it is a bit of a take on the old Journal Jars. I weeded thru some lists of quotes, found the one ones that were speaking to me NOW, and created some sheets to print. Simple typewrite style font, not too big, not too small.

I made them into a two-page pdf and printed them on reasonably heavy cardstock, cut them out and stuck them in a tube.

When I am planning a page, I will select the quote, consider it, then make the page and add it. I’ll see how that goes.

Just in case the quotes speak to you you can download the PDF here.

First attempt, tomorrow!

Leave a comment

Some envelopes to print and a resource to explore

If you have never looked at Raw Pixel, it might be a fun exercise. There are so many free-to-use goodies on there and the search engine is pretty good. I love that you can isolate free to use or public domain items with ease. The link should take you to a vintage selection, just as a starting point.

I had an explore and a play and made four envelopes you can download and print, in very different styles:

Now, I think you could grab the images by clicking them to expand them to their full size and then download them but I have there here as PDFs, if you prefer:

If you use images for junk journals or cards or art journals or any sort of art, of you make KDP journals and books, or even if you just want to print a bit of art for your walls, Raw Pixel is a great place to find high-quality images.

Hopefully normal service will resume next week!


Those little Addi-cranked gnomes

I am away for the day and as I had this info captured I thought why not share it, as an alternative to a blank page.

The gnomes are, I think, quite cute and easy to make, with or without a knitting machine. I have two versions, although the differences are more to do with the fun fur beards, the knitting is the same:

They use:

Humm. Kinda. The fabric circle was something I initially made use of when I stuffed the body with lavender but if stuffing with toy stuffing only you can ignore that completely. The knitting part is simple:

  • Aran weight yarn
  • Addi 22 pin knitting machine (I think anything from a 5mm to a 6mm pair of needles would work if hand knitting to achieve the size you like of nice, dense fabric. )
  • 22 stitches, joined to knit in the round, and 17 rounds in stockinette for the gnome head and 23-25 rounds for the hat. YMMV so see what works best with your knitting, needles and yarn.

Once you have your little knitted gnome tube, simply gather the cast-on edge (easy with the knitting machine because the cast-on is actually gatherable with a pull, if hand knitting just run a length of yarn thru the stitches and pull to gather then secure) and sew on the large wooden bead for the nose.

Stuff nicely and gather the cast-off edge as well.

I cut an oval of the fun fur because I only had the short-ish fur, rather than the long fur that looks more like hair, IYKWIM. Folding it in half then sewing the folded edge under the nose created the beard.

The hat is basically identical to the body except you will only gather one end of the tube, then roll the other end to make a sort of a brim:

Slip it over the top of the gnome head and tack it in place with the brim resting on the nose. I wasn’t keen on how the beard stuck out from the chin so I ended up tacking it down.

For the other one, same process, except I only cut half of the oval and tacked it down all round. Not a lot of difference between them but slightly less resources used. I guess the beard on the green-hatted gnome is slightly fuller looking.

You can see the hanger on the blue-hatted one. I think these would work for Christmas ornaments with little red or deep green hats and they use very little yarn so scraps can be used up. Stuffing them partially with stuffing but with some beans for weight makes them sit nicely on the table. I think they would also be cute for place settings. Remember this guy? He is slightly different, much more knitting required, much larger, but he sits as I describe:

Just creating this post has given me a bit of an idea for a version that might be…interesting. I’ll think on that further and report back if it blooms from this seed of an idea.

Might be back tomorrow if I feel up to it, but I might not. Likely back on Monday, although it is half-term so Darling Daughter always has me on a rigid schedule of Mom+Daughter time so we’ll see.


WOYWW 663 – dear lord what a mess….

Happy WOYWW! As I mentioned I have a minor hospital thing going on this week so I can’t say my desk is tidy or inspiring. It’s all a bit of a mess really.

The Hubster bought me a large Addi knitting machine recently and I have been sneaking across the upstairs landing from my crafty space into my sewing space to play with it as it works best if clamped to a table. I have also been trying to use up some yarn that is ether leftover from old projects or or recovered from frogged (rip-it, rip-it) items. What is on my desk (over top of some of the debris from the pleated tag book still) is something I was experimenting with.

Weirdly, the colours show they go together nicely (I think) in the above photo, where in the next one, they seem a bit off. The teal just isn’t right here:

The machine creates either a tube or a flat panel, but making the panel can be challenging. In my attempts over the weekend (and there were many) I found that previously knitted yarn works less well than pristine yarn in the machine. But when it works? My goodness look at the precision of those stitches! Blimey. The plan is to make the majority of the sweater on the machine but finish it off with hand-knitting of the shoulders. I am not sure if the sleeves will work as a tube or not, as it is a defined number of stitches and shaping is a tricky process. Recovering stitches that tuck or drop when doing either a tube or a panel is a nightmare so you have to keep on your toes, you can’t just speed-crank with abandon.

The other desk is also a bit of a nightmare:

The little art journal is still sitting there, closed but otherwise ignored, and you can kinda see some little gnomes I cranked out a while a go. I didn’t elaborate on the pattern for them at the time so I may add that tomorrow, as I will be away at the hospital for the day. Back to the other desk for the If You HAD to…. cards:

Another clear choice! With time, perhaps I could win over an animal or two, but being a baby seal executioner, publicly or not, is a step too far, or should be, for anyone. Who comes up with these cards?

Oh well. Happy WOYWW again.

Leave a comment

My card stash came in handy….

As I am still not really going out, obviously I would hand-make cards rather than buying them. I suppose I would do that anyway, but sometimes you might see a fab store-bought card that is so perfect you just have to buy it – or pilfer the design + words for your next handmade attempt! For Valentine’s Day I had a few cards pre-made, from my a-card-a-day efforts last year, so I had lots to choose from.

I picked two that were in a similar vein:

What I was reminded of was the technique I used of cutting the intricate Cherry Lynne die into different shapes for the focal points:

Yeesh. Sorry about the hot spot reflecting off the silver mirror card heart! The interesting thing is the post that outlined my experiments with this die is old – 2012 to be exact – and these were only a few of the options I played with back then:

I still love this die and loved using it again. Maybe you have one and this will make you want to drag it out and use it!