Breaking routine for weekend art experience

I spent the weekend with inky fingers, creating art with my peers at Artiscape in Dublin, Ohio. I had so been looking forward to the annual weekend-long event. My friend Cathy and I travel together – she’s the driver. We left Friday morning and took nearly the whole day to get there, stopping at any antique store along our path. We even ventured into one estate sale where we scored some interesting objects!

We took a little side trip to Wapakoneta to visit Gild the Lily, a lovely little antique shop we visited about three years ago. We were so glad we made to effort to get there because Glenna, who is 90 years old and the shop’s owner, was selling everything off in preparation for her retirement. We had a lovely chat with her and I bought some beautiful vintage lace to use in classes and on my own projects. Love my road trips with Cathy!


My first class Saturday was with Nancy Curry, who I was not familiar with, but her class sample intrigued me. I’m so glad I ventured into her class. It was three hours of play time with intense water colors, beautiful fibers and beads and I am so pleased with the final results. I walked away with a new enthusiasm for playing with watercolors!

green_door_studio_artiscape_tin640Saturday afternoon I played with burned band-aid tins, rusted metal, vintage papers and old photos. This wonderful little tin houses an adorable mini book created from small Formica tiles, vintage papers and other little dangly things all tied together with raggedy muslin. I would have never thought old rusty stuff could look so nice. Four full hours of creative, free-flow fun with Lesley Venable! It doesn’t get much better than this – unless, you get to do it all over again Sunday!

And I did! Sunday’s class with Lesley included a kit with more Formica tile samples – large ones this time! In the bag were also vintage cabinet cards and papers, mica and a few other little trinkets. Another three hours of free, creative time, chatting with new friends and sharing a laugh or two.

green_door_studio_artiscape_tag640There’s something to be said about breaking routine, meeting new friends and being open to learning new techniques.

It’s good to get away and enjoy new experiences, but now it’s back to work. We’re prepping this week for the popular Davisburg Antique Festival.

This will be our first major show so it’s a little nerve-racking trying to figure out what to take and how to get it there. I spent an hour today making a list of necessary items to bring along with the furniture. Stuff like phone charging cord, rope, signage, Sharpie, credit card reader and so much more! My biggest fear is we’ll get out there, the show will start and THEN I realize I forgot a very important thing like the change box! Hoping for good weather and lots of people who like to shop. Search out our booth – we’ll be in the tented section (not quite sure where that is). It’s a great show and they have lots of fair food – love me some elephant ears!

Quick & easy last minute holiday ideas

It’s time for more holiday ideas through Xyron’s 30 days of Holidays!10372750_10153350649544251_5810699339160766702_nThere is nothing I like more than a home-made Christmas. Brings back great childhood memories of making ornaments and decorations with my mother and siblings. I’ve come up – with some help from Pinterest – with some quick and easy decorations that really lend that home-made look to the home and gift items that are equally fun to do with the kids.

First up is a book mark. This was so easy to make with Xyron’s laminate cartridge and it’s a great way to preserve your art or that of a child – show me a grandma or grandpa who reads who wouldn’t love their grandchild’s art work done up in a useful gift. I sliced up an art journal page to about 1 1/2″ by 7″ sections. I ran them through my Xryon 5″ Creative Station with the Laminate/Permanent Adhesive.20141204_133816Then I stuck them together back-to-back and trimmed around the edges, punched a hole with the Crop-a-Dile and tied a pretty ribbon through the hole.20141204_134754My next project is one I found on Pinterest but revised it to make it even easier to assemble. I started with an empty toilet paper tube and flattened it with a bone folder. I wanted to print some holiday clip art onto a book page so after finding some free downloadable art I printed the two pictures on office paper to line up placement.

I was able to add just a tad of adhesive with the Xyron Mega Runner to all four sides of the book pages to hold them in place on the office paper. The paper (with the adhered book pages) was reinserted into my printer so the images could be printed on the book pages. I ran the printed book pages through the Xyron Creatopia with permanent adhesive and gently peeled it off the backing. Lay the toilet tube on the sticky side of the book page so the image is centered in the front of the tube. Wrap the page around the tube, fold up the bottom and clip the top sides of the book pages so you can tuck the top flaps down inside the tube.
linda_neff_Xyron_ornamentUse the Teresa Collins Stapler to secure the bottom of the tube. 20141204_131417Pierce a hole on each side of the tube top and add some wire. I added a jingle bell to one and white-washed one with a dilution of gesso. Stuff with special candies, candy canes, or other small items and hang on the tree as a special treat for visitors.20141204_142800My next project uses Xyron Laminate Magnet refill in my Xyron 5″ Creative Station. I took a piece of red glitter paper from DCWV Christmas & Winter Glitter Cardstock Stack and ran it through the Creative Station to put full-coverage magnet on the back and laminate on the top. Then I die cut it using a Christmas ornament die. I added the word ‘JOY’ that was die cut and run through the Xyron 1.5″ Sticker Maker. A pretty ribbon finishes the look. I also die cut letters to spell ‘peace’ from the scraps. It looks so cute hanging on the fridge!

linda_neff_Xyron_Christmas_Fridge_Magnets_blogFor the final hooray I grabbed my bag full of last year’s Christmas cards. How many years have I saved Christmas cards always intending to do something with them – well, this is the year! This actually was the easiest and my favorite.

I cut the card fronts just a hair smaller than the manilla tags I wanted to use, inked the edges and ran them through the Xyron 5″ Creative Station with permanent adhesive.

linda_neff_Xyron_tags_swagMy original plan was to make gift tags from these, but once I got them all done and laid out they looked pretty enough to hang so that’s what I did. I simply strung them some twine and hung them from a shelf. Aren’t they cute! When I actually get around to Christmas shopping I can slip the tags off the twine one-by-one and use them on the packages.

20141204_171327Make sure to visit the Xyron Facebook page to check out other great projects from the rest of the designers. There’s been some great ones and we ain’t done yet!

Artful tag

1379285_10201160006777115_1053883481_nWelcome to the Xyron and Core’dinations blog hop! We’ve been hopping all week so if you missed any, please click this link to catch up on all the other fantastic projects.

I had a grand time playing with the Core’dinations cardstocks in creating this tag.

I started by cutting the tag using dot textured tan cardstock from the Core Essentials Collection by Core’dinations and the Tim Holtz Tag & Bookplates die by Sizzix.

The pinecone and greenery are cut from Core’dinations Tim Holtz & Ranger Distress Collection using the Tim Holtz Tattered Pinecone die by Sizzix.

Coredinations_Xyron_Tag_linda_neffI inked the edges of all the pieces with Vintage Photo Distress Ink and edged with Black Soot. The pieces really started to shape up when I lightly sanded them all with the Core’dinations Sand It Set sanding block and wiped the dust away with the kits’ cleaning cloth. I loved the way the sandpaper squares stick to the loops on the sanding block. It is so easy to switch out to a new sandpaper! Some Ranger Clear Crackle Paint is spread across the greenery and set aside to dry and crack.

Coredinations_Xyron_Tag_linda_neff_2The pinecones assemble so easily. I rolled them as directed and sealed them shut with the Xyron’s Clear Hold Adhesive from the Teresa Collins Adhesive Kit. I also put a small amount of the glue on my non-stick craft sheet and used my finger to spread in on the pinecone tips and then sprinkled on a bit of gold glitter for some sparkle.

Coredinations_Xyron_Tag_linda_neff_3Once the pieces were assembled and dry, the sentiment stamped onto a scrap of manilla tag, I was able to construct the tag. The small flat pieces were processed through the Xyron 1.5″ Create-a-Sticker.

Coredinations_Xyron_Tag_linda_neff_4Once assembled, I tied a pretty piece of May Arts wrinkle ribbon to the top so it could hang and it looks great hanging from this burlap wreath!

Coredinations_Xyron_Tag_linda_neff_5Thanks for visiting my blog and be sure to hop over to all the others!