Thank you for visiting artful embellishments. This is the third year for this blog and I am so happy to keep publishing. I started in 2011 and began with a quilt of the week, this lead to the leaf of the week for my newly designed paper tree that is located on the wall of my garage in 2012.......2013 is going to bring a lot of excitement and positive change. As a personal challenge for 2013, I plan on designing a artist trading card each week to be featured on the blog.
With so many interests, there will be quilting, art quilting, leaves (and more leaves), as well as experiments in thermofax screen printing, fabric dying, and tons of DIY recycle projects. I may even enter that altered fashion scene. To a happy and healthy 2013, may we all find happiness in those things we create....thank you for stoping by artful embellishments.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Hands Reader Challenge

The hands reader challenge sponsored by Quilting Arts Magazine was a tough one for me.  I am not the best with coming up with ideas.  One of my favorite thoughts when I think of hands it the "Jeep Wave".   Anyone who owns a jeep wrangler knows "it's a jeep thing".  I decided to quilt my jeep wrangler with some happy go lucky hand wavers!
The quilt was made with a variety of fabric. I then hand painted the faces on the girls. The quilt includes machine and hand stitching!  I can't help it I just love my jeep and this quilt just makes me smile thinking about it.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Substrate for ATC's

 Working outside has become a favorite past time! I have the space up north on the deck. I love to make substrate for ATC cards and 5X7 cards (I need to think of a zippy name for those). My latest fun has been recycling diet coke boxes. For those who know me, I love diet coke. I prefer it over sweets even! So I always have a stash of boxes in the recycling bin. So I save up for a few weeks and had two of the bigger ones. I primed them with gesso. Next came paint, and then more paint.

 I then used images from my ephemera collection and decoupaged them like crazy. Just random images everywhere. Then I stamped with wild abandon.  I then added crackle paint and paint with larger stamps. Bubble wrap is a favorite. I used old corks, toilet paper rolls, and crystal light containers to get some nifty shapes.  Finally, I pulled out the secret weapon. Rub ons!  I am not sure if anyone has used these before but these take you back to childhood faster than oreos and milk. Pop-sickle stick in hand you adhere these on in a random order. Seven Gypsies makes some fabulous ones!  Voila, substrates done and ready to go!

Saturday, July 20, 2013

ATC 105-110

ATC 105 was made from this image of the baby looking through an old ophthalmology lens. I loved the butterfly wings. This little one is certainly going to fly-a-way at some point.

ATC 106 Butterfly was made with multiple rubs ons. If you have never used these, they are the best thing to bring you back to childhood. They are adhered by using a pop-sickle stick. Too much fun.  This card was embellished with a dragonfly.

ATC 107 Seaside is a tribute to the ocean in Seaside, Oregon. I had such a great time walking the beach when I visited this spring.

ATC 108 MEOW was made with a stamp from Poland. This little kitten looks like he is purring. 

ATC 109 Princess was made usingan image from ArtChix. I just love her butterfly wings. I couldn't help but put the crown on her head. I just thought the expression on her face cried princess. 

ATC 10 Muse was done with an image that I had found of this genii. I have these great tags with various words. Muse seemed perfect!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Sunsets Lake Michigan - Dog Days of Summer

 Lake Michigan is beautiful every day that I am there. However, there are some days that are so perfect, that I realize it when I am there in the moment. The last two weeks the weather has been spectacular. This first picture was taken with my cell phone. The water on lake michigan is rarely this calm. When this happens it is an amazing experience. It was hot, like over 90 degrees hot, which is unusual, but it gives that very dreamy appearance to the horizon. I love this picture as it the very thought I have when I think of going up north. It is what gets me through february in Saginaw!

This picture was taken on what was the hottest day of the year up until this point. (I think the day after I left it got even warmer.) It was 93 degrees and the sunset was a fireball. This photo has not been edited. I just love the fire!

 The photo on the left was taken as I was driving a way from the sunset. This was the week prior to the heat wave. There was one evening where the temperature dropped down into the 50's at night and it was a little chilly to hang out for the final sunset. I was driving away and saw this image in my rear view mirror.

This is that same spectacular evening as the sun just dips below the horizon. I am not sure if there will be another sunset like this during the summer of 2013, I am so glad I have these pictures to remind of this wonderful, peaceful experience.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Instagram, the phone, and a new toy!

 During my recent art retreat in Oregon I met Patty Waite, her blog is Nomadic Notebook (see right side of my screen for her link).  Her photography is so amazing, and I look forward to her posts as they are so full of creativity and inspiration. During the retreat she had talked about using instagram. I had downloaded it on my phone, and had never used it. Fast forward 2 months and I found myself on the beach during a gorgeous sunset with only my phone. I took these photos and put them through Instagram.  Now that was so easy and so much fun. It is amazing the different filters that can be applied. I look forward to more photography on the fly!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

ATC Flower Swap by ARTChix

The second ATC swap for  ARTChix is underway. I decided to do 12 cards this time!!! There is one extra for the very gracious host Nikki!!  Here they are!
The actual swap is early August and I will post the cards that I receive later this summer!

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Art Outside

Michigan weather can be fickle. Hot, cold, too humid........Art outside is not always practical.  Well mother nature hit it out of the part this week. We have had the most spectacular weather.  I decided to do art outside. As I pulled out all of my art supplies my teenage guests decided they wanted to do some art. These are the pics of the girls making some backgrounds for their own ATC cards. A vacation that was already perfect, complete with kayaking, beach trips, parades and fourth of july fireworks, we can add "arting" to that list!
 We even took a few breaks for some candy.  Notice Buckley the goldendoodle napping for support!

Using old coke boxes we painted and stamped!

I even got some of my ATC's done!!
What a beautiful mess!

Thursday, July 4, 2013

ATC 104 Bliss

This ATC is a tribute to the folk festival that occurs next weekend in northern michigan. I am unable to go as I must work one weekend, and I prefer the fourth off! The Blissfest brings in a few thousand people to the town of cross village which is population 330 normally.  I have always loved that word "bliss".  They have bumper stickers that say bliss and I was able to find a cool sign for my apartment that says "Follow your bliss".  It felt right to do an ATC called Bliss.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

ArtChix Nest ATC Swap

You may remember a while back that I participated in an ATC swap. This was sponsored by ARTChix. The theme was nests! Well I submitted 6 ATC's with that theme and received these 6 back. This was so much fun. They are hosting another swap called "Flower ATC Swap".

Information can be found at ARTChix http://myartisticlife.typepad.com/!
The one above is by Bonnie Ashurst!
The one above was made by Mimi Dzyacky.
This one was made by Lisa Robinson.
Fragile was made by Marion Bockelmann.
 This one is by Bonnie Ashurst!
Last but not least, this one is by Nikki, the host of the swap!
If you would like to participate but are having trouble locating the information, pop me an email and I will get you in touch with the host! Which is none other than Nikki again!!!!

ATC 103 Synergist

Well June was a bust for art! A ton of things going on, and too much work! So now that I have a few days off I will be working on more ATC cards!  Synergist was started back in may. I liked this image so must because I just think there is such magic between siblings! Couldn't help but use my dictionary text!