Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Writing in art journal?

Calligraphy is an artform, but I'm talking about journaling. I don't really care about some purist idea of what your journal should be, you make it the way you want it. If there's journaling, fine, if not, that's fine too.


But what I want you to do for this self searching journey, is to write 52 things about yourself you like. Like the 52 things I like about you card decks people have been making. Make one of yourself. Or, actually, I want you to make a page for each of these things you like about yourself. Start watching you and find out why you like yourself.
If you find it hard to think about things in yourself you like, start by thinking about all the people you DON*T like. Whether it's that nasty girl who always ate your lunch candy or Hitler, think about them, and then think how are you different.


Here's some more questions to ponder and get you started:

Journal Writing Prompts - Intuitive Choice and Answer list
119 journal prompts for your journal jar (yes, you can get yourself a journal jar)
5 year journal - 365 questions
50 art journal prompts
5000 questions


some important things to journal about - either write or paint, express yourself in some way or another - or as many as you can come up with -

The most stressful moments in your life
The most painful moments in your life
The most beautiful moments in your life
The most soothing moments in your life
The nicest thing someone has ever said to you
Don't journal about the nastiest, meanest things that have been said to you or about you, don't give that crap that much of your time and focus, because it's all just crap. Might be true, but not less worthless.


For example - as this is Homes4Her - you could use this journal also as writing down the messages from Goddess.

There was a series in the 90's, about a group of people with different medial abilities. One of them was this man, who got messages through association, sort of. For example, he was walking, minding his own business, and suddenly a car almost run over him. The car's license plates spelled something - or the letters and numbers had another association - or because he started looking after the car, he noticed a sign or poster - which lead him to another part of the message, and so on - through things like candy wrappers, randomly scribbled graffity, magazine names building words, or words popping out from the cover, or things like that. Overhearing a sentence here, seeing a book title there, little bits and bobs falling on his way all the time.
Keep your eyes open. The world IS a message. Goddess IS speaking to you ALL THE TIME.
Start recording these messages.
One message I received - I was taking a walk, every day, slavishly, 5K at noon, to get sunlight and to keep my fitness level a little higher than absolutely nothing. I started walking, was feeling miserable, no-one loved me, everything was wrong and bad, I was in pain - and then I saw the first buds of the spring. Just a little touch of green in the otherwise brown and white and grey landscape... I stared at that bough for good 10 minutes, and to me it was a message from God. "I love you, and because of that, I am showing you that after winter comes spring, and there is life in the seemingly barren landscape. Even though it feels like everything is wrong and bad and crappy, it's not, because you are just seeing what you are looking at. Stop and see the details." The world was still white and brown and grey and sad place, but there was that tiny bit of green there, and that tiny bit made me happy.

My sister has an "interactive Yule calendar". Every day from first of December to Yule she "gets" a present from God, Universe or something. Perhaps she sees the book she has been expecting, it has been published and she happens to be in the book store and have enough money to buy it, so she gets it. Perhaps the buss driver stops and waits for her, so that she doesn't need to wait for the next buss.
Start noting those little gifts Universe keeps sprinkling on your way.
If nothing else, write down what made you smile today. If the answer is "nothing", then find something.


Fill in the list, pick one or two and make a page of it. What would the music you just listened look like?
Think about the list, and change things to fit your liking. Perhaps you like to journal about the music you are currently listening, books you are reading, things you are hating, or current pet peeve? Things you are blogging about, pinning, tweeting, texting?


I love this Russian site about fashion, style, clothing etc. Here's their self search links, how to find your own personal style. I believe if you would dress one year in clothes YOU want to wear, in stead of following some fashion trends or style icons, it would have a great impact on your life, feelings, self-esteem. Also, the questions are really great for your art journal ;-)


Art to the 5th - Documented Life Project - it's a free project during which you get prompts for each week for your combined planner/art journal


Also, this: Self-esteem Journal
I have enorm problems with my self-esteem, and that is going to help, I hope.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014


Stamps. Yes, start your stamp collection as well :-D

I have another Pinterest board all about stamping and other ways of making prints.

Other things you could consider using as stamps:
- lids, spools, anything with raised edge, made of plastic or wood. Even some metal items work.
- anything made of foam or felt or other such material. "fun foam" is pretty good to use as stamps, easy to cut and keeps shape etc. There's often some foam used as isolation in packaging things like computers or so.
-styrofoam and funfoam are also soft so one can draw on them and have the grooves, so that you can use those as small printing plates. Which is what stamps basically are.
- any sponges, like household sponges or makeup sponges. Makeup sponges are better because the texture is very fine and smooth.
- textured fabrics and papers.
- leather and cardboard shapes
- lace and nettings
- flat buttons - also try the not flat buttons, those might work as well

Practically anything could be used. Experiment.

Also, if you use hard materials, like hard plastic, metal or wood, use something a bit softer under the paper, like a mouse mat or piece of felt or something like that.

Also, you can make stamps of potatoes and apples, and other fruits and veggies.

Frankly, I suggest you make some sort of handle to your "rubbish stamps". A piece of doweling or a block of wood, or a bottle cork are good handles. Or thread spools.
Here's an example of these homemade "rubbish stamps" - (not rubbish at all, just not intended as stamps) you can see that the handle makes the stamp look "official" :-D To me such details are important. I don't feel as poor if the stamps look like posh stamps, and are just not a basket of miscellaneous things.

Here's an idea of homemade stamp pads
of course you can use felt or some other such material, but those thin household sponges are quite adequate. Also, a household storage tub is air tight... so the ink or paint or what ever it is you use as color in your pad won't dry out.

Here's also some ideas about the stamps

Here's some ideas what else you could do with your stamps :-)

Monday, December 29, 2014

Start your stencil collection

The idea is that if you get a new stencil every week, in the end of the year you'll have 52 stencils. YAY!
I don't have much money, or access to some amazing things people in YouTube use, or patience to wait to get those things shipped to me, so I plan on making my own stencils.
For that I have been wondering what would be the best material to use.

Now, I would, of course, want them of brass foil, because those things last forever. (And are pretty, too, and won't tear, wear or stretch.) But I don't have brass foil, tools or knowhow on how to make them, so I'll choose plastic in stead.
Either overhead film, stencil film, thin plastic from file folders, plastic binder pockets etc. One can make stencils of stiff brown paperbags, as well, and basically a lot of things, but plastic lasts longer than paper. Usually. (I could speak a lot of stencils and printing, but now it's stencils for mixed media art and art journals, so I won't.)

Making the stencils of playing cards 
(as she mentions, some cards are of better quality and plastic covered or made of plastic, which are better as stencils)
is a great idea for my purpose, as they will be the exact right size! :-D

One also needs either a knife (exacto knife? Is that a brand or name for the scalpel kind of paper cutting knife?) or a stencil cutter, which is made to cut stencils from stencil film, but can be used to cut any plastic, as it uses heat to cut the plastic. It's really a great tool to use when making stencils, so I'm definitely going to invest some money to that.

Also, you will need a cutting board, and a self-healing cutting board for rotary cutters for patchwork makers is, as far as I know, the best.
(Also, find out how to best take care of your tools, proper storage and cleaning and maintenance etc. and invest some money to see that you have the best possible tools and storage.)

Another thing that I'm going to get for myself is a hole punch made for paper, because I want the polka dot rasters or benday dots :-D 

Now, what I have in mind (with the stencil collection) is more like this:
I think that's a "deck" of 40 or 50 metal stencils that was on sale at Etsy several years ago. I think it's amazing, and I want one. So I will be making me one.

So that's that about making stencils. There's plenty of free tutorials available at YouTube and elsewhere, so that anyone can learn how to make them, and they don't need to be advanced or anything.

Then, start looking at everything around you; anything with shaped holes in it can be used as a stencil.

Save the backgrounds of stickers. Most stickers come printed on a sheet of sticker paper, and the shapes have been punched out, meaning, that when you have used the stickers, you are left with an empty sticker full of holes - star shaped, heart shaped, dots... that's a stencil. If the glue on it is too strong, stick it a couple of times on jeans to make it less sticky, or powder it with baby powder, and brush it off carefully. 

But - the question that now arrives is: WHAT TO DO WITH THESE STENCILS?

The main thing is to LEARN TO USE STENCILS.
Sure, you can just doodle around and use them as you think they are to be used, or you can do it properly. I prefer to use them as they are to be used, properly, that is, neatly and without having the paint bleed all over the place.
One of the most important things is - with stencils you punch and dab, you don't grind, rub or brush. The movement is straight, vertically, not horizontally. You can brush the paint of IF YOU USE AN EDGE STENCIL, and the movement is ALWAYS AWAY from the edges. With a stencil that has a hole, the movement is up and down, not sideways, because the edges are all around the hole, and you can't go sideways because then you will always be pushing the paint under the edge of the stencil. When you use misters, spritzers and sprays, see that the drops fall straight down, not in an angle, because - in the angle the drops go under the stencil.
Also, the horizontal movement is hard on the stencil, too. Even if they don't tear, they stretch, and you'll get more leaks and messy result. Now, if that's what you want, fine, but if you don't want that, this is something you need to consider.

Secondly, there's some color theory about the best way of choosing the colors for your work. 
Some people approach the stencils with the mentality of a kindergarten kid. (Sorry, if this offends you, but - that's the way it is. Change your ways, if it does.) I lead a couple of craft courses with 7yos - felting and paper making - I had with me prepared paper pulp and wool, in all kinds of different, bright, lovely colors. Most kids took a little bit of every color they liked and blended them, and in stead of the rainbow shimmery result they expected, they ended up with a dull brown-grey mass. Some people layer stencils by using their favorite colors - bright, lovely colors - yellow, green, blue, red - and the result is a brown-grey mess with scary intensive dots of pure color, everything the same value, and the effect makes my eyes hurt.

Usually it works better if you start with lighter colors and finish with dark.
I also think it looks better if you vary the pressure on adding the color - to give it more variation and life. Fade it.
It's also good to choose just 2-3 colors and then use these colors in different values, shades, hues and tones. (Those 2-3 colors would be a color; it's neighbors and opposite)

I like this video (even though she rubs...)
This is even better - and shows several ways of choosing colors and using stencils.

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Inspiration deck

The first project this year will be making an inspiration deck for yourself.

You start by purchasing an ordinary, cheap deck of cards, and some white paint (any ordinary room paint will do, you won't need much, so get a small can. Not the sample cans, a little bit more), and then some way of getting the paint from can on the cards, like a small roller or small paint brush meant for details in furniture or so. That is, not fine art paint brush.
Then you spread the cards on a newspaper and paint them white. (Of course you can choose any color you like, like teal or turquoise :-D) Let them dry, and repeat the procedure on the other side.
You should end up with 52 white cards (some decks of cards have more than 52 cards - there are up to 4 jokers and a couple of ad cards in the decks - the more the merrier.)
You can also buy 2-3 or more decks and paint them all white at the same time.

The collectible card games come with wide selection of storage units, boxes made for the cards, plastic pockets for a binder etc. These are the perfect size for your cards.

So what are you supposed to be doing with these cards?
These are going to be your Mixed Media Inspiration Deck.
Of course you should go and buy that, and the boosters as well, but it doesn't hurt to have more than those 52 cards, and if you are like me, you'd rather use the pennies to buy more art material than inspiration decks, how ever great they are.

I have two Pinterest boards that are useful in this:
Book of Shadows, Book of Light
Surface treatment
I have collected different ideas, pictures of other people's work, free tutorials etc. on these two boards.
Now, the idea is to take one of these ideas, any one, and write it on one of the cards.
For example:
From this video you get the following techniques and ideas for your inspiration cards:
- use string, yarn or thread to add texture to your page
- use tissue paper
- use color spray; for example spray ink
- use salt
- add glitter, shimmer, sparkle
- add some metallic wax
- add letters
- embossing, enameling - you can either use embossing powder and embossing heat tool (hair dryer, heat gun) or clear nail polish, which is a polymer lacquer (one could say plastic resin) - which ever is easier and cheaper for you. A clear drying hard glue works too.

You can make all your cards to look the same, so that you won't even subconsciously pick your favorites, or make the cards an example of the technique or suggestion on it. :-) Because it really doesn't matter if you have favorites and use them often :-D The main thing is TO CREATE and if you want to explore one technique or a couple of materials over the others, that's all fine! I mean, just think about watercolorists. They don't experiment with a lot of different media and materials and techniques, they have what they are good with, what they prefer to use, and use that to express what ever they wish to express.

Another idea, instead of cards you can use tags and have a "tag book" - all the tags in a ring. Then, in stead of shuffling the cards, you shuffle the book and do what ever comes up.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Make your journal

I am going to assume that you are as poor as I am, and there's very little inspiration that is NOT associated with product marketing, or inspired by product marketing... I don't think I have seen a video where they make a nice art journal page without using the pricey stuffs. And I'm assuming you have very little if even that ;-)

So, you won't have money to buy these fancy notebooks and sketchbooks.

You could try taking an old book and gessoing the pages and use that as your art journal. One can get old books pretty cheap, depending on what book it is. Old dictionaries and lexicons they practically throw at you, and lexicons are usually quite big, and the modern ones (from 80's and on) have quite thick, coated pages and sewn binding, so it's easy to remove a couple of pages from each... er... what are they called... those bundles that are sewn together... signature?

You can also start small, and bind your own journal, and this is what I am going to do this year.
I am going to use free newspapers, which here in Sweden means the free advertisement papers that are printed on newspaper. They are totally free, they have home delivery, and these papers are as big as it gets. (Here in Sweden they have noticed that people prefer reading smaller papers, so I haven't seen a full sized newspaper for ages.)
I am going to use the "one page wonder" binding.

You are going to need a sheet of newspaper, as big as you can get and glue or "mod podge" or wallpaper paste.

This is a recipe for "homemade mod podge", which is equal amounts of "clag paste" and "white glue", and a little water.

"Clag paste" is wallpaper paste. You make it by cooking 1 part ordinary white wheat flour (all purpose, what ever it's called) and 2 parts of water. Let it bubble some 5-10 minutes and let it cool. That is a pretty good "glue" for decoupage and papier mache etc.

This mix will warp the paper, so you need to let your work dry under weight sandwiched between even layers of something to lead the moisture away. You can use newspapers or kitchen towels, but place a sheet of wax paper between the glued surface and newspapers, to stop the newspapers from smudging your work, and the glued surface from adhering to the newspapers. You need to have a kitchen towel or newspapers UNDER the pile, because wax paper will effectively prevent the glue from drying :-D And that's not purposeful.
You can also dig up your work from the pile every couple of hours to air, and change the newspapers/kitchen towels.

So, how to do this.
1) take a sheet of newspaper. As big a sheet you can get. The bigger the sheet, the bigger the book.
Fold it in half, the short edges to each other. Push down properly. Open the fold, and fold the edges to this midline. On this layer, all the folds should be to the same direction. (so... if you make a tube of it by putting the short ends together, it should look like a square from one end of the tube.)
Then open it up, and fold in half, the long edges to each other. This time you want an accordion folding, so you fold both sides in half again, the long edge to the middle.  (Looks like M or W looking from the short end of the "pile")
I know, I'm not very good at explaining...
What is important here is that you make precise, sharp folds, so that after you have cut it, the pages sort of fold themselves into right position.

 Fold lines

2) Then you cut up the newspaper. You should end up with a long sliver of paper, so you have to be careful not to cut up the lines to the end!

Cut lines - looks like M

You will cut the short folds over three folds - two from one direction, one from the opposite direction.
To get the book of this big M, you start folding it by the fold lines.

3) I don't know if this is any clear, but the blue lines are "valleys" and the green "mountains". If you folded the newspaper as I adviced, you won't need to turn the folds, but it's just... folding the book together.
4) Then you need to glue the pages together.

Here's a very nice explanation. You can jump over the exact measurements and all that. Of course, being exact gives a "better" result, but I kind of like the haphazardous nature of just folding and cutting. I think it's more "bohemian" ;-) Artistic, unique, individual. You, of course, do as you find best.

You will end up with a little booklet of newspaper, with 16 pages - or 8 openings, how ever you want to count.

When the booklet has dried, you want to gesso the pages. Gesso isn't expensive and you can buy it online, so you have access to it where ever you live. So, I would ignore the "make your own" tutorials, and just buy a bucket of the stuff. You will use it. A lot.

The purpose with gessoing the pages is to create a good ground for your future work with the book. Newspaper is VERY short fiber paper, which means it's soft and wears and tears and you will get problems if you don't prime the pages.
But - it's cheap - free, in fact - and all you need to make it is things like scissors, glue and gesso.

Now comes the problem - will you wait for your pages to dry, or will you buy a cheap hair dryer and dry the pages?


1) I really recommend that you invest in an art journal or watercolor sketch book, because this newspaper journal will have a life of its own. Now, I'm OK with that, but you might not - the paper will react to moisture by buckling and curling and rippling, even after it's been gessoed, and the seam in the middle where the pages are glued together, is weak and rips very easily if it gets moist... which it will.
You could also do your pages on separate pieces of paper that you glue to the newspaper journal, but you need to fold the paper in the middle, if it's as big as an opening of the journal, BEFORE YOU PAINT IT. Otherwise this folding might destroy your work.
2) I really recommend that you invest in a hairdryer, because it's a blessing to have the pages dry as you sit there, and have a bit more control of the drying process, and not need to wait for the pages to dry... You could also work on several pages at the same time. When one needs to dry, you move on to the next one.

Friday, December 26, 2014

New year, new ideas...

I have been horribly neglecting my blog.
I have my excuses, but the truth is that if I want, I'll find the time etc., if I don't, I'll find excuses.

Enough about that.

I found several courses for this year that sound amazing, but - alas - I don't have the money. Yet.
And they say the best way to learn is to teach, so in stead of indulging myself in courses and learning and growing and all that, I'm going to indulge myself in all the free resources I can find online, and share them with you.

One thing I have learned is that I shouldn't promise anything.
I wanted to say "I commit myself to post every day of this year - 365 blog posts"
Then I thought about it and realized that so far I have managed to write blog posts once a day for a month. That's it. So 12 months, cold turkey, isn't realistic. It would be nice, but it isn't realistic.
So - what about once a week? 52 blog posts... I should be able to do that. It's just a little less than twice the posts in a month.
But - I won't promise anything, and I won't commit, because I don't know how to do that, so I'll do my best, try and see what happens.

So, enough about that as well :-D

I am going to make an effort to grab myself on the skin of my neck (I wonder if that's a Finnish idiom that doesn't work in any other language...) and make myself create something every day.
Yes, every day. Every day is a possibility to create, and even when I'm sick and tired, I can create.

So, this year, I'm going to focus on me and create a sort of Self Searching Journal, healing, creating, some expressive art journaling, learning to know me better and becoming more ME. Fully egocentric, egoistic, egotistic and all things EGO. I love Ego. Frankly, I believe we have been born to be an Ego as fully as we can. That's why we all have our own skins, personality, preferences etc. etc., we have our own friends, kinsfolk and tribe, we have our own dreams and wishes - we have all our own lives. If we were supposed to stop being ourselves, stop being Egos, we wouldn't be separate. We would still be part of the Great Whole without any separation. We do have the separation, and I cannot believe anything God given is bad.
But I have been brainwashed as the rest of the humanity, to believe that focusing on oneself, one's self, is egocentric, egoistic, selfish, very, very bad. Of course, a highly spiritual person may not even think anything is "bad". :-D The truth is that even people speaking themselves blue about ego and how to get rid of it, don't really know what they are talking about.

Nevertheless, I'm going to have a Year of Me, and I'm inviting you all to join me. Everything I do I share freely on this blog so that you can do the same.
And as I already said, the road I'm going to take is through an art journal.

An art journal is a visual journal or diary or log book about your days.

The least you need is some sort of paper (or cardboard or canvas or what ever it is you like to put your painting on)
and something to make a mark on that paper. Pencil, markers, paints, crayons, glue and magazine pages, what ever you like.

But - there's a big list, too... if you want to make sure you have it all ;-)

There are hundreds of different paper sorts, paperboard, cardboard etc. etc. ALL OF IT can be used in art journaling.
Don't forget:
tissue paper (silk paper)
glassine (pergamyn in German, rather popular hobby paper there, but they have this st.Marten's tradition of making paper lanterns, so... anyway, Finland was closer to Germany than USA when I was growing up, and had these hobbypacks with tissue paper in lots of colors, metal foil paper in lots of colors and this glassine paper in many colors... I loved it, and I think it's a pity that's no longer available, as everyone is "scrapbooking" in the US style products - it's all the same, and very boring. :-( - So I'm going to go to Germany to buy some paper.)
cellophan and the different foils, metal and plastic, like overhead film
Crepe paper, scrapbooking paper, magazines and newspapers, all the different commercial papers like butcher paper; household papers like pergament and wax paper; squared and lined papers, graph paper, ledger paper, wrapping paper, napkins (all layers are good, not just the printed layer), all the possible envelopes and file folders etc. etc.
Also, don't forget the tracing paper! I loved that stuff when I was little :-)

Pens, pencils, markers, crayons, pastels... anything like that, from the kids versions to high artistic quality stuff. Experiment, and choose what you like best. If you only can afford one, get a black one. Or one in your favorite color.

Most art journalists love the watersoluble crayons, colored pencils and markers.

Dry pastels are different from oil pastels, but which ever you choose, go for quality. Cheap pastels are totally different from the pricy ones, and if you have ever used the pricy ones, you won't ever be happy with cheap kids' crayons. The pricy ones are soft, have a lot of pigment and very little cheap fillers, so they will leave a good mark on paper without much job, and they will be easy to use, a pleasure to use.

The colored pencils are their own art form, and there's an ocean of information about them. But I don't like using them on art journals, because they are very special. I would recommend something like pastels in pencil form, inktense pencils, colored graphite/charcoal pencils that are water soluble. Those are as far as I know most usable in art journaling. See that you have a white colored pencil, of a very good quality, because that will be very useful for highlights etc.

One should have a good journaling pen, and some colored markers for detailing, etc. Most markers are translucent, but there are some opaque variations too, like acrylic markers and poster-paint and water-based paint markers.
Also, there's a world of variation when it comes to markers. So - experiment, test, find what you like.
I would like to say that even though Copics are amazing, they are a bit too expensive for people who just like to play with their colors and materials... Of course, if you have the money, you can buy the copics, as they are refillable and even the tips can be changed, and the color variation is unbelievable, and they are lovely to use, but if you would prefer to use your money to something else, you can get yourself something a bit cheaper, like Promarker Letraset - there's plenty of colors there, too, and they are nice to use.
I think one must is a white marker or white gel pen, what ever that's called.

It is a good idea to get a box of drawing pencils, graphite pencils, chalks, charcoal, charcoal pencil with a thick, watersoluble charcoal etc. etc. There's so much out there!

Like this Koh-i-Noor Giogonda artist set 
with a graphite stick, charcoal pencil, white and red chalk pencils, 
black and dark sepia (charcoal? chalk?) and black and sienna soft pastels 
with kneadable eraser and paper stump.

Then there are the paints; acrylic, watercolor, gouache, finger paint, poster paint, different inks and printing colors... oh, go wild! And there's a constant flow of new colors to the market, like stressing inks and shimmer mists and whatnots... the world is your oyster there :-)
But - as everything costs... get a couple of testing colors of those mediums you are interested in, in your favorite color(s). Then, at least, if you find out you don't like the medium, at least you like the color and it's not wasted ;-)

Have also good paint brushes for application.
A lot of people love the fillable paint brushes, those with water tank. (Water brush, aqua brush...)
I also recommend having a couple foam brushes, a bunch of cotton tops - or the makeup application tools, which are basically just different paint brushes and sponges :-)

Glitter, glimmer, shine, sparkle, metal wax, mica, there's a lot of ways to add some of this to your page. Don't forget eye shadows. Those things can be used as pastel chalks or glimmer powder as they are, or mixed with some adhesive.

basically, anything designed to dye, stain, color paper, wood or fabric can be used on paper.
Experiment with some things that are not...

Also, there's a British brand of materials that produce things that are not known outside Britain - but these can usually be found in online shops... so go visit foreign shops. ;-)

There are different glues and stuff like that. 

Which ever you use, remember to use a cheap paint brush that can be destroyed and thrown away without much bother. (Not too cheap, or you'll end up picking hairs from your work). But don't use your best artist quality paint brushes for glue and gesso! Or masking fluid.

Most art journalists swear in the name of matte gel medium for acrylics. It's apparently "dry", so it won't warp the paper, so you can glue anything with it, and it apparently keeps anything in place when it has dried. So - sounds really good.
It's good to have a glue stick, too, and I like the rubber glue.
I also think it might be a good idea to get a glue spray, with not a lot of hold, to use when you are to print on tissue paper or napkins. (Yes, you can.)
Also, white glue or milk glue is good to have, for all these recipes :-D
"mod podge" or some other decoupage paste/varnish
Packing tape is quite useful
masking tape
a lot of art journalists love washi tape. I haven't found any, so I don't know what it is and how it works and whether I like it or not... it doesn't sound like something I'd be very fond of, but you might like it. It can be used as fastener of your extra papers or photos; as ribbon to decorate the page; to add texture; etc. etc.
Some like staples. I don't. Some like brads. There's apparently a lot of embellishments like this made for scrapbooking, and of course you should go and see what they have, and perhaps you find something absolutely adorable and so you, that you just have to have and use on your pages. I'm a bit minimalist when it comes to embellishments. I like to make the impact with colors and patterns and composition rather than decor and accessories.

gesso. There's white, black and transparent. All of them have their use.

Clear nail polish. Nail polish is sort of polymer resin and can easily be used on paper, as glue, as shiny varnish, to add a bit polish to details etc.

Some sort of rags to quick clean up when mess happens, or to gather excess liquids etc. One can use kitchen paper, but old, clean rags, like flannel or old cotton t-shirts, or old cotton sheets, are equally useful, and reusable :-D Just make sure they don't lint. That's why "old". Used and washed many times, and natural material. It must be cotton or linen or some other plant fiber.

stickers are part of this scrapbook-y embellishment list in my mind. I'm really bad at using them.

transfer, rub-ons and other
there's a whole world here, too, about how to make them, how to use them etc. etc.


You can even use the decorative scissors for different things, like making combs to add texture, or to make masks

the classics, ruler, eraser, pencil sharpener

some sort of heating/drying tool, like hair dryer or embossing heat tool.

baby powder or very very fine sand or other such dust. Some things won't dry unsticky. They need some sort of powder to bind the stickiness. Like in the olden times they powdered the letters to get the ink dry... that was very fine sand.

rubber stamps and ink pads

one thing that's very useful, is alphabet sets. Stamps, transfers, stickers, stencils, all go.

stencils and masks
masking fluid, masking tape - learn to use these

some sort of palette, to mix the paints, cups, bowls, plates, jars, bottles... apparently small spritzer bottles are really useful.

palette knife (knives)
plastic cards (like credit cards or hotel keys or gift cards) to be used to mix and spread the paint or gesso or what ever, in stead of a palette knife. Sometimes a plastic card is better ;-)

"journaling bits, embellishments, ephemera"
playing cards, collectible card game cards, tarot cards, oracle cards, old game pieces, post cards, old greeting cards, stamps, bubblegum cards, advertisement ephemera, photos, old tickets etc, paper dolls, paper ribbon, string, yarn, ribbons, tapes, bands, buttons, gems, artificial flowers, visit cards, leaflets, booklets, coasters, book pages, prints, note cards, notepad paper, flash cards, vintage lotto cards, tags, recipes, receipts, patterns, dictionary pages, lexicon pages, other book pages, children's picture books, scraps, envelopes, catalogs, calendars, almanacs, paper doilies, music sheets, maps...

doilies and lace - paper or thread, doesn't matter.

embossing paste, embossing powder and adhesive, modeling paste...
One thing I have been really happy about has been my embossing tool. It's a little metal tool with changeable heads, like a small ball, bigger ball, cup, edge, etc. for embossing paper or metal foil. I love it! But I have always loved embossed paper... my favorite scraps were the embossed ones. And those with glitter, of course, those were the finest :-D

mesh tape from hardware store; made to cover the seams in walls. That's great to add texture, and other things.

I really, really want a circle punch (and hole punch). All these fancy-schmancy cutters etc. are not necessary and in my mind 100% waste of money, but if you have the money - or someone throws these machines at you - go ahead. They have their use, too, and are fun.

Paper cutter. Really nice.

One important thing you are going to need is photos of you in different ages. If you have nothing else but current photos, then that will have to do, but you must get photos of you. Go to a photo booth if you don't know anyone with a camera.

I'm sure there's more, but we'll discover that on the journey :-)

Monday, December 22, 2014

What may come

Merry Yule, Happy Chanukkah, Joyous Holidays, what ever you celebrate, may it be lovely and amazing :-)

I am planning and preparing for a surprise for next year, so stay tuned :-)

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Apparently someone thinks I should update my blog :-D

This morning I was on my way to, when I was being a bit careless with my mouse, and ended up to Facebook instead.
Just in time to see a post made by a friend about the effects in adult life of emotional neglect in childhood...
I was reminded of that even though I seem to have gotten over The Catastrophe, I still am suffering of the emotional neglect. *sigh*
I kind of thought that those two were related in a way that when I get over one, I'll automatically get over the other. No such luck :-D

Now I was on my way to Internet Archive Wayback Machine, and, being sloppy mouse handler, ended up here.

So... Spring Equinox was and went, and started the next Sabbathiad, second half of Spring, and we are heading towards the Summer and Mayday. (M'aidez... :-D)

Monday, March 3, 2014

Weekly checklist countdown

I ADORE, and their master plan for an organized Christmas is pure genius. So I have adjusted their weekly checklist to Pagan Sabbaths, and here's a printable calender.

You should be able to right-click the image and view it, to be able to print a page for your Sabbath Planner. It should be clear enough.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

3 weeks to Ostara :-)

Just 20 days... that's not even three weeks. (One day short... >:->)

It's a good thing one doesn't give presents on Ostara, because... hey, wait a minute. One doesn't? Oh, yes, one does. Baskets...

Anyway, this week I want you to do some things:

* I do wish you have your Holiday Center still up since Imbolc. You did celebrate that, didn't you, even when I wasn't around to remind you? Actually, I was in Finland. It was lovely. More snow than in Sweden. :-) It was a really, really cold day, and I wish I had blown soap bubbles. They say those freeze into ice baubles. I would want to hold one in my hand and feel how thin it is...
If you have cleaned out the Holiday Center, create one again. 

* Take forth your Ostara binder. If you have one. If you don't, get one. Take Sabbaths seriously, please! If we don't hallow our Sabbaths, no-one will, and then "the majority" will "steal" our traditions. Just like they did with Yule.

* Make a "family value" check. Go through your Ostara celebrations through the years, and how you would like to celebrate it. What is important to you in Ostara and the celebration. Plan how you will be able to lift up the themes and messages of the season that are important to you, and how you can create family traditions that are most memorable and enjoyable for you and your family.

* Update your Ostara card list, find out all the addresses, see that you have the cards, write them, put them in envelopes and stamp them, and write the addresses on them. Then post them.

* Are you going to travel? Now it's high time to make the travel reservations and check-up all the necessary details - are visas ok, everyone has been vaccinated, you have proper equipment, suitcases are whole and in working condition etc. etc.

* Houseguests? See that you, your home and your family are ready to welcome them. You still have time to fix the missing bits and bobs.

* Family photo session? Get ready. Appoint the photographer, plan outfits, etc. etc.
Also, do you plan getting your hair fixes? Schedule hairdresser.
Flowers? Order them.

* Clean your home thoroughly, ready for the decorations.

* Plan the Ostara meals, clothes, baskets, and everything else. Write shopping lists.

* Make a tabletop check. Do you have all the necessary tablecloths, napkins, glasses, cutlery, centerpieces etc. etc.