Sunday, September 30, 2007

Teeny Tiny Sewing Machine and Cat Shown Actual Size

Hello there...I was 'sew' excited to find my sewing machine arrived when I got home from La Florida yesterday. What good is this, you ask? It will sew through paper, fabric, do leetle repairs and most importantly, assist in all forms of altered art. Plus, it is the least intimidating sewing machine I have ever seen- considering I haven't seen one since eighth grade- and even then, I didn't like them. No blue ribbons in 4H for skirts and aprons for me. In fact, no 4H for me, which is why I "made" Adrienne do it. But that's another story. Even Lester is not intimidated by this. Got the little gem from Stampington for $10.95. (Go pitiful Notre Dame today). Off for a pedi.

Feelin' Productive Now!

Besides the post below with ATCs for the ARTchix pink post contest, fat book pages, skinny book pages and more, I got these four ATCs with embellished sugar skulls done for ebay. Not only did I get them listed, I managed to squeeze in some tags to satisfy some ebay group contests, such as "numbers" for CaaT and "Halloween" for AWLA. I was feeling very productive until I noticed it was 2 a.m. Oh, well! This is my 85th post, so getting ever closer to the 100th post party. But I digress. Back to Sugar Skulls.....just love them, think they are fun and whimsical, and they have a nice history. Just got a decoupaged cigarillo tin with a sugar skull on the front. I have my business cards in it. Also, I have a "blank" metal lunch box, and I am thinking of decoupaging sugar skulls on it. Why? I do not know.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Finally! Time to Get My Hands Dirty Again!

Yippee! Finally some time to spend on art after a one-week hiatus. Where to start? It actually took me awhile to get going. Everything I started on looked bad. I just didn't feel like anything was working. So, I took a break and hooked up my new color copier, scanner, printer which had been sitting in the box for two weeks. It was super easy to set up, but my laptop died, then my second battery died, then I discovered my power cord went missing from my suitcase, having been right on top when I left Florida. So I hooked it to our other computer, and being wireless, it will be easy to hook to my laptop when I getting it going again.
With that accomplishment out of the way, I went on to finish my page for the All Originals Fat Book monthly theme swap. As the theme is pink and breast cancer awareness, you can see my contribution. Be sure to visit I also photographed two of my entries for the ARTchix Pink Post contest. Can't wait to hear the results of the Pet Post contest!
Still on a mini-roll, I assembled nine of my background pages for the Altered Abbey Skinny Book swap. I have 27 finished (obvy) double-sided pages due in less than 3 weeks. So, a lot of pages left to make, and finishing these pages is yet to come. Don't have any idea yet what I am going to do. A lot of the coolest pages I've seen have birds on them, but I'd like to think of something myself. Maybe I'll think of birds!
Finally, these rubber stamps were on my work table, just asking to be photographed. My Stampin' Up monthly club order came, as well as a cute crow in a dress from Invoke Arts. So much to do!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Another Yummy Entry

Originally uploaded by Zalita
Still "stranded" with no access to my art or photos to blog, so I borrowed another fantastic cupcake from my Flickr group and talented member Zalita. Just felt the need for some new eye candy!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Hello From Sunny Florida

No pictures to post; no camera here; but I feel incomplete if I don't blog regularly! I am in sunny Florida, from sunny Indiana, for a week of work. My base is Orlando. Today I saw a power station and one of the towers of wires and such, out of many, was shaped like a mouse head with the famous ears. I wonder how Disney arranged that? Today was spent seeing clients in Tampa. Did not spot a single art-related store, although an ARTchix pal told me a couple exist. We were going to meet up, but she teaches school, and I was in and out of Tampa during the day. Being in ZNE and ARTchix and other groups makes it kind of fun to know there are kindred souls all around. In fact, I recently mailed an art card to an Artchix chick in England who is sending me one in return. I was a little skeptical when the post office charged me only 90 cents, but Charline in Lincolnshire tells me it arrived, finally. Can't wait to get home to work on my 27 skinny book swap pages (front and back!) and I have one 4 x4 page due in Oct. for breast cancer awareness. I want to get all this done before vacation beckons!

Monday, September 24, 2007

Zettiology Group Postcard Swap

Here are four postcards I just finished yesterday that are going to Maine, Massachusetts and Florida-somebody's mailman will have raised eyebrows for sure. I see I still have a little fine-tuning slash Botox-ing to do on these. The digital camera can be so unkind! I made my postcards reminders for Zetti Pre-School Photo Day. One says "Smile your Best Smile....limit one head per child, other restrictions may apply." You know the drill. Well, probably you don't and find this awfully weird, but 270 group members cannot be wrong. Check it out here I am also uploading one I have received from North Dakota-very colorful and super fun! Thanks, Jan Williams.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

The Cupcake As Art? Definitely!

These are just the most incredible, sweet, beautiful things I have ever seen! Who could eat it? Wouldn't you want to save it to show everyone?! These were made by ( karen ) of Flickr and Cupcakes Take the Cake group fame here I am so glad she gave me permission to share them here. I am in charge of a baby shower at work. I don't think mine will look like this! Such talent!

The Cupcake As Art? Maybe Not.

The cupcake bug has really bitten me. I love looking at the beautiful works of art on Flickr as I have mentioned before. In fact I've requested permission to post another incredible work of art; meanwhile, here is my somewhat lame attempt to decorate Halloween cupcakes.
It was fun; they are colorful. But, they look nothing like the creations from my cupcake group! I guess practice could help in any arena!
I was amazed to see this is my 78th post! Getting close to that all-important 100th post milestone which means prizes! drawings! free goodies! just for commenting. A time-honored blog tradition. Stay tuned.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

I Got Tagged by Dale at Sea Dream Studio

This morning I was tagged by the Dale Zan McLain of Sea Dream Studio She has a lovely blog with lots of art, photos and currently a music video from one of my faves, Jimmy Buffett. I also like to frequent her Etsy shop for ephemera. Dale is a fellow Zne-er too.

Anyway, getting "tagged" in blogland goes like this: link to your tagger and post these rules. 2. Share 7 facts about YOU: some random, some weird...all devastatingly interesting. 3. Tag 7 people at the end of your post and list their names (linking to them). 4. Let them know they've been tagged by comment to their blog.

I procrastinated all day on this because seven devastatingly interesting things are hard to come by, but here goes......1) I despise popcorn (I would have said "hate," but that is not a nice word. 2) I also despise beer. 3) My name on my birth certificate is technically Gina-Mari-not nearly as interesting as all Dale's family names on her blog. 4) I was born with a funny little bump on one ear and my tongue attached to the floor of my mouth. That was fixed on day one, and I've been yapping ever since. 5) I did the books and taxes for my brother's antique shop, starting when I was in junior high - thankfully the period for litigation has long-since passed. 6) there was a time when I was fluent in three languages and 7) I've driven 455,000 miles for my job in the last 13 years. Whew, done!

I am tagging, you lucky girls, Jen Konz; Michelle Geller; Kat Tarra; Bernice Wagnitz; Laurie Blau-Marshall; Katey D and Cris Marsh at Have fun! Sorry if you hate this kind of stuff. Normally I might, but it's my first "tag," so I am honored!

My Hope Sees a Star Donation

I was so thrilled to complete this project today. I have been working on it for several days to donate to the fund-raising auction of my ZNE group, entitled "Hope Sees A Star."

In a news release, Chelise Hery, founder of explained: "ZNE is an international group of independent artists and crafts persons working in conjunction with the Oakland Zoo to create a permanent installation in memory of two teenage girls – Stevie McMoyler and Brianna Grant - whose lives were lost earlier this year in April and June, respectively.

Gina Gabriell and Iva Wilcox both of California, are two artists who share a tragic connection. Both women’s daughters were diagnosed with fatal diseases in late 2006. In April of this year, Gina’s daughter Stevie McMoyler died from a brain tumor at the age of 19. In June, Iva Wilcox’s daughter, Brianna Grant, was only 17 years old when she died from a rare disease ~ MDS (myelodysplastic syndrome).

When ZNE group members found out about the two deaths, they wanted to go beyond extending traditional condolences to Gina and Iva, given the magnitude of their loss.

In January of 2008, Laurel True, a world renowned mosaic artist, will begin designing a permanent mosaic art installation in memory of the two girls. The installation is scheduled to be installed in the Butterfly Conservation Garden at The Oakland Zoo in May of 2008. The memorial will incorporate the sentiment: “In Memory of Stevie and Brianna – forever loved daughters of the creative community.” In conjunction with the installation, a $5,000 donation will be made to the Zoo. Staff at the Oakland Zoo have indicated that they hope to use the funds to support an intern who will be a caretaker for the garden.

ZNE is holding an online sale and auction October 1 – October 15, to raise the funds needed for the memorial project. More information on the Hope Sees a Star website,, or email Chelise Stroud Hery at

My canvas is a 10 x 10 handpainted, stamped, collaged 3D project with removeable inlaid-turquoise antique pendant.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Is This Obnoxious or What? (Yippeeee!)

I was so excited to come home from work (after about 300 miles) and log in to all my various spots to find I had won some awards from one of my ebay groups! CaaT - Complementary Art And Things held a collage sale contest starting Aug. 31. This announcement had been up almost all month, and as a lover of collage, I couldn't wait to list my entries. Unfortunately for all the sellers, collage did not do very well, but I was thrilled to win (can I say it?) ALL THREE prizes!! Wheee! They were: most entries (natch), highest sale and most unique bids. I entered prints of some of my collages pictured here on my slide show below as well as 3 different styles of my ZNE August Book Club beeswax collage "I Saw a Spirit." What actually sold, though, were collaged domino pendants, also pictured here.
I hope the slow sales don't indicate bad things for collage in general; but we shall see. I have enjoyed collage for as long as I can remember, including collaging one whole wall of my college dorm room. I also remember helping my brother collage the walls of his antique shop in the 1970s, and those were like 20' high walls and huge rooms. Ahhh, the 70s.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

The Bestest Things in Small Packages

Now, why anyone would think G stands for grump, I do not know. But, irregardless, I purchased this highly embellished artist trading card on ebay from Kim Laws of ajoy*2*bheld. The same day it arrived, this adorable charm from Michelle Geller of Hold Dear also arrived from a trade we did. After some blog correspondence about fat books and skinny books (and books that climb on rocks), she mentioned some charms she was making for an art gathering and was gracious enough to offer one to me in trade for one of my domino pendants. Art people are just the greatest.
So not to belittle either artist, I decided these two just looked perfect together. Since the ATC wouldn't fit in a normal collector's pocket anyway, I decided to combine them for my bulletin board so I could enjoy seeing them every day. Thanks, ladies!
It's been another few days without making anything, and I am going crazy.....arrrrgh! (It IS National Talk Like a Pirate Day, according to Flickr, so there's my contribution). At least I can blog, and that gets us all that much closer to my 100th post- which means (insert drumroll) freebies, give-aways, goodies to commenters, as is a long-standing 100th post tradition. So, stay tuned!

Mr. Froggy Came A Courtin'

This adorable little needle-felted frog arrived today, a birthday gift purchased on Etsy (like ebay for all handmade things). Mr. Froggy was made by MarmeeCraft, and I first saw him on her blog at I then had to hop right on over to Etsy and nab him. He is my second stuffed frog and joins a host of other strange and wonderful creatures, such as a crocheted Hello Kitty and a zebra sock monkey.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

And still more cupcakes, or is it eye candy?

While I'm on the subject of cupcakes, and what a great subject it is, here is a link to the most wonderful blog, which goes with the Flickr photo site below. It is amazing the art people can create with these tiny little cakes. I do like to make and decorate cupcakes, and always have. But, I am waaaay out of my league here. Still, I love to look. Believe it or not, the creator of the mosaic below is not a professional baker and has only been decorating cupcakes about a year. That is some crazy talent!

I am feeling behind and bogged down with all of my art projects. I want to create, create, create, but work and life have to come first. I have so many things due in October, from Zetti postcards to a witch hat to 27 handpainted book pages to.....I forget. I have the ideas and the supplies, but....

Another ridiculously frustrating thing is that I have to put away virtually all my art supplies every night. Not because I am an anal tidier, which I am, but because my cats will eat anything. So far they have consumed parts of the following: paint brush, wooden ruler, sandpaper, feather, ribbon, paint water, yarn, rubber band, rubber stamp rubber, glue-like crystal effects liquid and more. Mind you, I do not want them to do this for their sake, and I try to keep it out of their reach. But, they try to do this when I am sleeping. Grrrr, just when I was starting to embrace clutter! (just a little clutter on my art table, that is).

Finally another shout out to two of my special groups: ZNE and ARTchix These are such wonderfully supportive and talented people and fun and active groups!!

Monday, September 17, 2007

OMG Cupcakes!!!!!!!!!

My creation
Originally uploaded by ShamsD
This absolutely beautiful mosaic and more importantly, these beautiful, stunning cupcakes were added to my Flickr Cupcake group by ShamsD. She is completely amazing and received several Flickr photo awards for this. No surprise.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

My Newest Journal

In response to a prompt from the ZNE Book Club weekly assignments, I created a new journal (I was due for one anyway). We are studying "Alphabetica" by Lynne Perella, which is really an art book celebrating collaborative journals made by published artists using various prompts. We were to choose a word, phrase, acronym, monogram or other collection of letters regularly used by or associated with ourself.

I chose "whatever" because I wanted my journal to be able to contain whatever but also because I have developed the bad habit of saying it way too much, with all sorts of assorted inflections.

What started out as mimicking my teenagers has taken on a life of its own, as I use the word to indicate such things as "do what you want," "I don't care," "Oh, sure." "No really, whatever you want to do" and other such phrases. Hey, if it can be said in one word instead of seven, why not?" Or, I mean, whatever.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

I'm a Happy Camper

What a great day! Started with two hours of thorough house cleaning, always a good feeling, and then a trip to the rubber stamp store, consignment shop, antique mall and a trip to Stamp Camp.

Cris Marsh, my Stampin' Up demonstrator, and her sister Angie Higginbotham, collectively Creative Cottage, offer a monthly stamp camp for their customers. All the pieces and parts are provided, along with refreshments and door prizes, while attendees go table to table, making various cards and things.

Here you can see the cards I made. One is actually perforated and includes a tear-off book mark as a thank-you. There is a darling Halloween card, and then we decorated a bottle of bubbles for a great gift. Finally, we rolled a pen in decorative paper and micro beads for a cool result. Such fun!

Some Little Lovelies

Isn't that lamb the sweetest thing ever? My daughter went to town for some last minute Vegas trip supplies and came home with this lamb, bubble bath and a cute emery board for dear old mom. I think I'm getting buttered up for something.....but she's airborne tomorrow.
The 5 x 7 canvas is an acrylic, by a friend, of my old jewelry business sign (hence, the name of my blog).
The other pics are my Charge-It Fairy charm by Sally Jean Alexander. I just found the tiniest easel today that finally fits it-kind of like Goldilocks- I now have at least 7 easels plus a fork. Okay, well, the tines were bent to make it into an easel, but it was, *sigh* too big. So, I made it a business card holder upstairs. The fancy silver easel I made into a business card holder downstairs, and I still have easels to spare! But now I have one that's just right. No wonder the back of the charm says "She Couldn't Help Herself....It's So Me!"

Speckled Egg Hat Swap

This lovely chapeau has now been completed for the Speckled Egg Halloween Witch Hat Swap. A lot of people made paper cones, but I found this satin-like hat for $1 (sorry, recipient Jen). I then added fabric stiffener (didn't even know this existed in a spray bottle- thought I would have to use liquid starch). Once this was done, I attached a large crow, which my cats had tried to abscond with. I also added skulls, bones, black roses, and gold glitter. Through the point I added a removeable silver wand for emergency spell-casting. The wand is embellished with gold glitter and black fun fur. On top of all this is a lovely black veil and orange feather pouf. Now, how to mail, how to mail?

The Mother of all Hauls

I could not believe my good fortune today. Found all this stuff at an antique mall- not a flea market or other bargain venue. The bottles were all in a box for $4. Eighteen, count 'em, 18 totally cool glass bottles, including an inkwell, milk bottle with plastic cap, old Cliquot, old Lavoris, perfume, medicine, vanilla and salt (I think) and more. There was one scary, large brown one I left outside. It still had liquid contained by its cork. The label says Oil Oajaput by Fuller-Morrison, Chicago. Perhaps someone knows what this is.

The bottles are sitting on some other treasures I got: a smooth wooden paddle that looks like it should have been a hand mirror, a printer's tray and a wooden cheese box. I also got a wooden folding ruler, which was the only thing I went for (as if).

The other great treasure was a complete vintage Bingo game set in great condition. There are tons of cards, markers and numbers, all soon to be altered into who knows what. Maybe a few of these treasures will make their way to ebay for someone else to alter. I am typically not a pack rat and can't stand clutter, so I will use it or lose it.

Friday, September 14, 2007

How I Love All Things Fall!

I was so excited with the cold snap that when I got home tonight I was running around grabbing fall decorations, washing my market treasures, opening windows, lighting candles and generally celebrating my favorite season. I am also glad to finally be one with my blog again, having not posted since Sunday. Not working on anything the least bit artistic all week was sheer misery. But, my work travels took me all over the place from IN to KY to IN to MI to IN again with some overnights thrown in, sooo, no time for play. I guess I must cram it all in this weekend. Can't decide what to do first (again). Got some great art magazines to look at. I am really loving Cloth, Paper, Scissors so I got some back issues. I love all Stampington and Co. publications. Well, the list goes on. I have my Country Home, Country Living and Mary Engelbreit's Home Companion piled up. But, I have so many goodies to make and swaps to complete. I wish there was a way to stay up for 48 hours all weekend and not suffer.
My little Pookie leaves for Las Vegas Sunday for her first trip there as an adult. She is going with a group of friends, and the MGM Grand may never be the same. Maybe we should have a Blackjack lesson tonight. Nope, no time. Happy Fall!