Why Rosie's Book?

While growing up, I had a dear friend, Renee, that lived next door and with whom I spent much of my childhood. We grew, in different directions, and went on our merry way. Many years later, I ran into her parents and they kindly reminded me of the laughs they still have over my book. “What book?” I wondered with a puzzled look. "I don't remember a book." Hardy laughter accompanied their response. At some time during our childhood, I tried to convince Renee about something that her parents didn’t agree with. I told her that proof of its truth could be found “in my book.” Naturally she went home and tried to convince her parents of the same thing but they weren’t falling for it. She needed an edge and told them emphatically, “It’s in Rosie’s book!” After they caught their breaths from reborn laughter, they let me know how “Rosie’s book” has been cited for many other things throughout the years. They’ve also mentioned that they’d like to see “Rosie’s book” one day. I can’t remember all of the things that I said were in “my book” but I’m sure my dear friend’s parents can recall much more than I ever knew about – LOL!!! So, here it is . . . my version of things you might find In Rosie’s Book . . .

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Tag Art with Copics: Magnolia Circus Horse

The Sizzix Tim Holtz Alterations Movers and Shakers Tag and Bookplates die is totally cool.  While I like using the size 8 manila tags, I love that I can die cut the same size tag out of various materials with ease.  Chipboard, grunge board, transparency, vellum, corrugated board, manila folders, fabric, felt, patterned paper . . . ahhh . . . it's all good.

I die cut a tag using Bazzill Smooth Extra Thick white card stock then embossed it with the Sizzix Tim Holtz Alterations Texture Fades Sheet Music.  Tim Holtz made a great suggestion to slice the texture fade embossing folder so the tag will slide through it for continuous embossing (see Tim's slicing instructions here).

I added drops of Copic various ink refills to a felt applicator and pounced color over the tag.  To soften the edges of the colors, I added drops of colorless blender to the felt applicator and pounced it over the colors.

Using a dew drop of Memento Tuxedo Black, I dragged the ink pad over the embossed areas to make the music notes show up better.

I stamped the Magnolia Circus Horse image from the Cozy Autumn Collection 2010 onto X-Press It paper.  Using coordinator colors, I began filling my image.

I'm really trying to make myself like X-Press It paper but it's just not cooperating with me.  The layers of Copic ink don't absorb into the paper, rather it seems that the ink lays on the surface.  Instead of the shades of colors blending, they just move around.  The more I add layers of colors, the more the ink puddles.  It's just not pretty.  The colorless blender is almost ineffective although I was able to get very faint swirls to show on the cloth over the horse's back.  It took far longer than it should have for minimal results.  In my frustration, I forgot to take a picture of the back of the paper.  I don't usually care about the back but noticed that the Copic ink just isn't absorbed well.  I'm very unhappy with the results of using Copics on X-Press It.  It feels as if the paper is fighting me, every step of the way, and it doesn't let me move the colors as I need to for the look I want.

Jami's freebie digi-download made up for it!  I'm thrilled that the wonderful Jami Bova, a.k.a. SgtStamper, created a fabulous set of digi-tickets with a variety of sentiments to use for any occasion.  That's not all!  Jami is so kind to share her beautiful work for our use!  (Find Jami's free digi-download here.)  I filled my printed ticket with coordinating Copics and doodled curls behind the sentiment.

Here's the completed tag that shows how I combined coordinating various ink refills with Copic marker colors.

Copics used:
BV11, BV13, BV17, BV29
Y11, Y13, Y15, Y26
BG10, BG13, BG15, BG49
E13, E15, E17, E29, E95, 100
T0, T6, T8

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Copic Creations Colorless Blender Tricks! Challenge

The current Copic Creations challenge relates to Colorless Blender tricks and techniques. The sponsor of this challenge, Pink Cat Studio, is offering 5 digi images to a randomly selected entry. Find out more about this challenge and Pink Cat Studio here.

At least 20 very cool ways to use Colorless Blender quickly came to mind. I should add that I have 4 different 0 markers (Ciao, Sketches and Original) that I keep with me at all times. They’re like my personal Copic life preservers. I have replaced a couple of the large bottles of Colorless Blender various ink refill and have a regular sized bottle for ease in refilling my 0 markers. I use A LOT of Colorless Blender.

Important Colorless Blender FACT – The Copic Colorless Blender is really misnamed. It is NOT a blender. It is an eraser, a pusher and a fader but it will NOT blend. This is why when you first tried to blend with it, you wondered when you forgot how to color, put your markers far away in a dark corner, and were discouraged from trying to use them again.

It is an eraser, . . .

If you accidentally place color on the outside of your image lines, try pushing the dried color back into the image by using your Colorless Blender. Place the tip of the Colorless Blender at the farthest edge of your misplaced colored line and push the color back toward your image line. It is ok to touch the line with the Colorless Blender tip but do not cross the line into your image or you will erase the color that you placed there. If all color was not successfully pushed back into your image, let the spot of Colorless Blender dry well and then try again.

. . . a pusher . . .
  • The Colorless Blender can be used to customize and create distinct texture.
  • Use a spritzer filled with Colorless Blender for a cool textured look.
    Dabbed with Colorless Blender dampened paper towel
  • Dabbing quickly, pounce a Colorless Blender dampened paper towel over your image. Watch as the Colorless Blender pushes color around the image creating a soft, natural, highlighted texture.
  • Use the Colorless Blender to create designs in dry images.  When the tip of the Colorless Blender is held over dried marker color, the wet Colorless Blender will push the color away from the Colorless Blender solution and allow a faded or whiter design to show through. Doodle, polka dot, curl, swirl, move the tip of your Colorless Blender around the area. Either the brush tip or chisel tip will work. The longer you hold the blender in place, or the slower you move the tip around, the more pronounced your design will be.
  • Add “drops” or larger “bubbles” and “pebbles” by touching Copic inked areas with the brush tip of the Colorless Blender marker until the color moves out of the way. Lift the marker then do it again for a stronger spot.
  • To create simple bricks, use the chisel tip of a Colorless Blender and touch the angled side down and hold for few seconds. Watch the color push away and form a frame around a rectangle shape the size of the chisel tip. Place the chisel tip next to that block and form another. Continue to create a row of bricks. Begin a new row by staggering the “bricks” to make a natural looking brick wall. Use this technique in a more random pattern to give a confetti look to a background.
 . . . and a fader . . .
  • When the tip of the Colorless Blender is used over damp marker color, the wet Colorless Blender will fade the color away and allow a very soft, velvety, muted color to show through.
  • Blender pre-soaking is a way to maintain smooth, even, overall coverage when filling very large images.
  • Fill a water brush with blender solution and pick up color from a palette to use Copic ink to create a watercolor look (only way to use Copic ink on watercolor paper).
  • To use for Emboss Resist with clear and white embossing powder, while the colored area of a heat embossed image is still wet with Copic ink, wipe over the heat embossed raised lines with a smooth section of a Colorless Blender dampened paper towel. Swipe towel softly over embossed area to avoid scratches in colored area. As the colored area and the Colorless Blender solution dry, the colored area may show signs of a marbling texture.
  • When using Copic ink to color directly onto stamps, fill stamping area with Colorless Blender to moisten. When you place your stamp over the moistened area, the Copic ink will remain on the paper, leaving a very clean-lined image.
  • You can also apply Copic ink directly to your stamps then spritz the color with Colorless Blender to moisten the stamp. The image will appear to have a more water colored affect on your paper.
  • Use the Colorless Blender to create designs in wet images.
  • Bring your images to life by Fading with Colorless Blender to emphasize areas of strongest highlights and reflective qualities of shiny surfaces.
  • Use the Colorless Blender to fade edges to white and soften color lines.  Remember when fading edges to white with the Colorless Blender, add lightest color only to the shadows and use Colorless Blender only on that color’s edges. The objective is to fade the color, not erase it. Keep the Colorless Blender away from the shadows and/or the lines of your image.
With that said (whew-LOL!!!), I finally decided to fuel my newly acquired addiction to repetitive patterns and combine use of my Colorless Blender as a pusher for creating Zentangle-inspired card art.

I used my QuicKutz Special Delivery gift set to die cut a scalloped card and mat. I love the soft, fluffy look of airbrushing so I sporadically added some autumn colors to the card front.

Once the airbrushed color dried well, I began adding slow, deliberate and overlapping strokes of my Colorless Blender to push the color out of the way.  I intend to cover the center of my card front with matting for my image so I only pushed designs around the card edges to create a framed area.

Pushing Designs with Colorless Blender
In fact, the moisture from the Colorless Blender pushed the color out of the way AND right through to the other side of the card front! I considered covering the inside then found that I like the subtle design there.

Pushing Designs using the Copic Colorless Blender is a fabulous way to add texture and dimension to fabrics, like the sofa that this Well Read individual from My Favorite Things stamp set is resting on.

Create your own patchwork quilt for Get Well cards using this pushing designs technique. Add texture to clothing by pushing and fading. If you need highlights that are soft and natural OR crisp and rigid, then the Colorless Blender is your go-to tool.

For me, the best Colorless Blender trick is to have several 0 markers and Colorless Blender various ink refills ready to go at any given moment.

Copic Colors Used:
Airbrushing, Image: YR24, B37, R59, BV25, T6 (edges only), Y28 (mat)
Skin:  E000, E01, E11

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Copics on the Road - Vermont

I recently had the pleasure of spending some time with a wonderful group of Copic lovers from Newport, Vermont (just 5-10 mins. from the Canadian border!).  Denise Piette, owner of The Front Desk Office Supplies and Scrapbooking, has begun to teach Copic classes there using some of my class kits as her base.  I was excited to visit and teach this group about the fabulous color selections that Copic provides for a variety of Skin Tones.  I brought my airbrushing equipment along so they could play a bit with the airbrush system too.

I was as happy as they were to share their first Copic airbrushing experience . . .

Laura, Marilyn, Denise and Jill
Later, Denise and her husband, Real, turned me on to Poutine (pronounced like pootsin).  It's just not right that something that tastes so good could be so bad for you.  Mmmm.  It's an incredibly delightful dish of crispy fries, covered with brown gravy and bits of curd cheese.  Mmmm.  I was supposed to share this plateful . . .
Top:  Curd Cheese Bits; Bottom:  Poutine (Mmmm)
We also visited the Haskell Public Library and Opera House that was built over the U.S. and Canadian border.  The floors of the library and the opera house are marked to clearly designate the border.  As this was my first visit to Canada, I was torn about which foot to enter first . . . It's the only place I can put either foot over the border without needing to show my passport . . .
Our ventures into Canada for apple picking were unsuccessful due to the rainy weather but Denise humored me by taking my picture near Vermont's beautiful Lake Memphremagog (did I get that right, Denise?).  The magnificent autumn foliage of Newport had already peaked but I was still able to catch the beauty in much smaller doses.
My autumn travels to Vermont to teach use of colorful Copic products reminded me that we just can't color as good as God can. 

But it'll sure be fun to try!!!
Oh . . . and did I mention how really good poutine tastes?!?!?!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Zentangle: Focus on Spiral Pattern

I've recently returned from spending four very exciting (and mentally exhausting) days with a fantastic, 68+ strong, group of diverse individuals from all parts of the world.

We gathered at the Oakhurst Retreat and Conference Center in Whitinsville, Massachusetts, in the home town of Rick Roberts and Maria Thomas, creators of Zentangle.

I'm thrilled to have been able to participate in Zentangle's 4th Teacher Training Seminar and look forward to sharing this amazing art form with others.

While wandering the grounds of Oakhurst, I came across this lone sprig of beautiful autumn flowers and thought that I may be able to recreate the spiral pattern of its petals.

With a few steps of simple, repetitive strokes, this makes a fine memory of my time there.  (Note:  this is not an official Zentangle, rather it's my own attempt at recreating this natural pattern.)

I began with a simple circle . . .

added a curved line to each side . . .
then another set of curved lines between those . . .

adding the same curved line from the outside center of one to the outside center of the one next to it, the shape of my spiraled flower petals begin to form.
It's all very symmetrical . . .
I added an outline halo, a.k.a. aura, around the outside of the curved shapes . . . twice.

This shape is so much more interesting after filling in an aura . . .

A solid dot in the center and a little pencil shading at each level adds nice dimension . . .

Here's another very different looking version where I attached an early curved line to a curved line below it instead of next to it . . .

I love that you can't go wrong . . . simple, deliberate, repetitive strokes, will always amount to something special.

This pic of a key fob shows how my spiral pattern looks mixed with some official Zentangles.  Cool, huh?!?

I'm honored that Maria and Rick stood with me for this photo after I received my certificate of completion.  I hope to present their Zentangles with the same love, care and pride that they put into creating them.

You can find out more about Zentangle, Maria and Rick here and here.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Handmade Quilled Folded Roses

I like being able to create handmade and coordinated embellishments for use on my projects.  Quilling folded roses is fairly quick and has a very big WOW impact.

Here's how I make them.

I like to use WorldWin DoubleMates cardstock because it has two different colored sides and generally both sides show in quilled objects.  Patterned paper is usually thinner but can also be used.

I use my Purple Cow guillotine paper trimmer to cut 5/16" wide strips that are 12" long.  The samples here are Belgium Blue and Fairy Tale Pink.

I begin by folding the end of the strip, from about 1" into the strip, up and away from me.  I guess the first fold is at about a 15 degree angle.  I like to crease the fold with a bone folder.  Here's how it looks:

I hold that fold firmly then bring the long side of the remaining strip toward me for another fold.  I try to follow the angle of the first fold, so this fold is also at about a 15 degree angle.  I like to crease this fold with a bone folder too.  Here's how it looks:

Holding those two folds firmly and still, I take the long side of the strip and fold it away from me.  The angle of this fold is a little bigger, at about 130 degrees.  This is the last fold that I crease with the bone folder.  Here's how it looks:

Now I begin curling from the short end of the folded strip, into the folds, toward the flat longer strip.  The curl has to be a very tight curl.  Here's a peek at how it looks as the curl begins, very loosely:

Holding the curl, very tightly, I begin to fold the flat strip, away from me, at the same angle, allowing a spot of the other side of the paper to show.  Here's how it looks:

Curling as I move along, I continue folding the strip, away from me, until I reach the end of the strip.  It's very important when quilling, that the curls be held tightly as the fibers in the paper warm and stretch to hold the curled shape.  Try not to let go so the paper strip doesn't unravel.  If that happens, don't worry about it, just start at the beginning and re-curl.  Here's how it looks so far:

When I reach the end of the paper strip, I use a thin line of glue on the inside . . .

 and hold it tightly for about 60 seconds to ensure the bond is secure.

These handmade quilled folded roses look stunning just as they are.  I like to add some shimmer by smearing a blob of rock candy stickles over the surface of each rose.  Every rose is different!

If the center of the completed rose is a little bigger than I'd like it to be, I'll cut a 1" piece from a 5/16" strip and roll it very tightly then insert that rolled piece into the center hole to fill it.

You can use strips of paper that are wider than 5/16" to make your roses too.

Enjoy!  I'd love to see how you use your own handmade quilled folded roses.

See my Card Art with Copics and Quilled Folded Roses project here.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Card Art with Copics and Quilled Folded Roses

The massive area of an easel card is so much fun to decorate and embellish.  There's even room for a hidden tag!  (see how-to post on making easel cards by clicking here.)  I want this to be a loving Christmas card without using the traditional Christmas colors of red and green.

I've prepared this easel style card using Bazzill dark blue and Basic Grey eskimo kisses in snow globe and thin ice.  All edges were pierced then stitches drawn with Copic atyou Spica sky blue.

This time I added a pocket and tag in the unused space located under the easel.  I hand sewed the edges of the pocket to the background matting piece to allow a little more space for the tag to slide in and out more easily.  Check it out . . .

I used the lovely Magnolia brother and sister stamp with the intention of changing the perception of that image to represent the young love of girl/boyfriend or endearing love of wife/husband.

It always makes me so happy when I can easily find Copic markers to coordinate with my papers.

I created quilled folded roses and smeared rock candy distress stickles over the surfaces of them.  The leaves are punched from a punch bunch multi-punch.  A Making Memories ornament charm hangs from the ribbon on the card front.

Here's another view of the completed easel style card, with hidden tag pocket.  I hope it clearly expresses that I feel my husband is a gift to me and that "all I want for Christmas is . . ."  I might even tuck something special in that hidden tag pocket for him.

Copics used:
Skin:  E000, E00, YR00, R20
Tilda Hair/Edwin Shoes:  E11, E15, E18
Edwin Hair:  E31, E34, E37
Overalls:  B91, B93, B95
Dress/Socks:  RV93, RV95, RV99, G82, G85, G99
Tilda Shoes:  T0, T6, T8
Edwin Shirt:  E04, E07, E09
Ground:  W7, W5, W3, W1
Airbrushing:  R21, BG11

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Copic Creations Orange Challenge

Copic Creations is featuring the color orange in their latest challenge (here).  Tiddly Inks, home of Curly Qs, Annie and Lilly Beans digital images and papers, is sponsoring this challenge.

I've inked up a fun Motivet Chef Hilda image of a hippo that's been hoping to invite someone special for a surprise meal.

The Cool Gray family of Copics has a hint of blue in it and so seemed to be the best choice to use on a hippo.  That hint of blue also gives it a very cool tone so it's a great gray family to use for cold, metal things, like the tray and lid that Hilda is carrying.  (See an example of all four Copic Gray color families here.)

I know, I know . . . Chefs wear white.  Orange is associated with warmth and is said to increase your food cravings.  It stimulates enthusiasm and creativity.  So, Chef Hilda needs to wear orange.  I did let her have a "white" hat with just a touch of orange shadows reflecting from her orange outfit.

A Spellbinders scalloped rectangle die, Anna Griffin patterned paper, Offray simply sheer ribbon, and Basic Gray colored buttons helped to build this card that shows my attempt at featuring some of the Copic colors of orange.

Copics used:
Skin, Tray/Lid: C1, C3, C5
Blush: E93
Eyes:  BG0000, BG11
Dress, Bows, Hat: YR0000, YR00, YR01, 0
Airbrush: V93, BG11

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Card Art with Copics: Magnolia Flying Tilda (Fairy)

I started out with the intention of making a cute Halloween card using a Magnolia fairy stamp.  All little girls like to dress in their fairy costume and I thought it would be appropriate to brighten the card a bit by using purple, green and orange papers without adding the more diabolical-looking black.

This closeup of Tilda shows a little more detail . . . including adding blush and freckles . . .

I've used at least NINE different Copic techniques to fill this image.  Do you recognize all of them?

1 - Skin Tones 3-tone Smooth Blending
2 - Deliberate Streaking (hair, folds in dress)
3 - Clear/Transparent Things (soften outline color edges with colorless blender)
4 - Casting Shadows (hair line on face, under her chin, dress line on legs)
5 - Outline Shadows (outline outside of whole image)
6 - Airbrushing (contrast around image, coordinating color inside of die)
7 - atyou Spica (over star wand, inside of wings)
8 - Fade to White (lace of sleeves)
9 - Adding highlights with colorless blender and lightest color (hair, dress)

This time the X-Press It paper did clean up nicely for me when my marker tip slipped outside of the lines.  I had a more difficult time trying to soften the edges of the light outline color inside of the wings though.  On other paper, I usually only touch the edge of the color once with the colorless blender and it acts immediately.  With the X-Press It paper, I touched the edge of the color three to four times and it still didn't soften the edge of the color very much.  I'll keep trying . . .

I've used punch bunch flower and leaf punches for simple, coordinating flower embellishments.  A rhinestone adorns the center of each.

Here's the completed card that showcases my Flying Tilda image from the Magnolia Fairy Tale Collection 2010.
May your Halloween be magical . . .

Copics used:
Skin: E000, E00, YR00, R20
Hair: E55, E57, E59, 0
Dress, Shoes: BV00, BV02, BV04
Wings: BV00, 0
Outline Shadow:  N4, N1
Airbrush:  YR02, G40, B02
atyou Spica clear