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Following The Butterfly

I just finished making 24 Christmas cards! 

When I started...I had NO idea that they would become cards - but that's what happened.

I read or hear about artists - I even know a few (go look at Hollis Chatelain's website) (she dreams her quilts) (her work is extraordinary) - who have a picture in their mind of what the finished product will look like - for the most part - when they start making art. 

That's incredible to me!!!

Even more amazing than that...is that they have a plan to GET to where they see their art going.

Not I.

Unless I'm making a quilt from a picture I've taken - like this one of Puerto Colombia...

or in the case of 'The Kiss' - I used a picture of a painting by Gustav Klimt.

Even then I impose silly rules on myself...like I can ONLY use scraps that are in this or that particular container. Or they can only be scraps that are under 4 inches. (Like I did with my version of 'The Kiss' above). And I don't pick them out in advance. I tend to just grab the next thing that'll work.

And so on and so forth.

I know...weird.

Sometimes it makes me feel like I'm not a "real" artist.

You know...that lack of a vision and plan.

I usually just get started and "follow the butterfly".

I've done that all my life. In pretty much every area of my life. But that's a subject for another day.

Anywho...I kinda sorta think I like these cards. 

I have a stash of paper you wouldn't be-lieve. It's huge because I keep adding to it and I really don't work with paper very often. 

At least - it doesn't play a starring role in my art.

When I was making Sophia's invitations last month, I made little card size quilties and then went looking in aforementioned stash for card stock to sew them on to. (You can see them in an older blog if you want to take a look-see).

Well...as organized as I am...and I AM, my paper stuff hasn't gotten that kind of attention yet. 

So while I was emptying drawers...I followed the butterfly - and organized according to weight, size, store bought, hand made, saved wrapping paper, paper towels I've painted, paper bags I've painted, etc., etc., etc.

I now KNOW where everything in my paper stash is located - well except for two drawers - and that's another few hours work - for another day.

I decided when I did all this marvelous organizing that the next thing I made...would be with paper. 

It's ridiculous to have the amount of paper I have.




So...I went in the playroom one night last week and procrastinated by mending a few items.

Did you hear what I just said?!?

I MENDED because I didn't want to - or know how to - or what to do with the paper stuff!!!

Mending yuk.

After fixing two items, I decided to fearlessly plunge in.

To a book that is.

Now...I used to spend hours looking at art and craft books wishing, hoping and dreaming that I could make something beautiful.

Then I decided - after a couple years of that - to Just DO It.

But I found myself in this book the other night...

And told myself that the first thing I came to that I liked, I would make.

Otherwise I knew I'd spend a couple hours looking for the "perfect" project.

And then art wouldn't happen.

Not as fast at least.

So...here's what I found less than 30 seconds later...

They're tags...for presents. 

I know...mine don't look anything like them. :)

First they instruct you to make a stamp (Christmas tree shape triangle) and then a stencil (trunk with branches). 

So I made mine and stamped and stenciled and cut shapes using the first paper that I came to (which I thought would work) - from one of those two drawers that still needs organizing. Then I glued my shapes onto heavier pieces of paper.

BTW - when they tell you to use stencil material to make a stencil...unless you want it to fall apart - like mine did (I used heavy cardboard)...you might want to follow directions.

I have a problem with that. 

Following directions that is.


FYI - the glue that I used is 2-3 years old which may be the reason it was sooo messy - but I don't think I'll be trying 2 Way Glue again unless somebody tells me how wonderful it is. It really took a LOT of the fun out of my play time.

The next day when I went to do the next thing, the glue still wasn't dry but that may be because Barranquilla is humid most of the time.

I fixed that by sprinkling glitter where ever there was a sticky spot.

Which meant my little shapes - stars, hearts, etc now look like blobs of glitter.

Oh well.

Nevertheless, I did have fun...but mine came out a little bigger than theirs which meant I ended up with really big tags.

I didn't like them very much...

until Hillary came over one afternoon and ooohed and aaaahhhed over them.

It surprised me enough to take a second look and get back in the play room and...well... 


So I stamped over my stamping and stenciling with stamps from my very extensive rubber stamp collection, added buttons and scraps of string and trim and glued them onto card stock.

And then stamped a little more.

I now have 24 Christmas cards that I totally don't need because I've been collecting them at yard sales for years and probably have enough to send for the rest of my life.

And since I live in Colombia - where the cost of mailing anything is prohibitive (and you thought the United States PO was bad) I probably won't use a fraction of them.

But I will use the ones I made first.

If you don't get a card from me it's because I'm really good at collecting them

and really bad at sending them.

Either way...I'll be thinking of you and missing you this Christmas

like crazy.



    Just because you don't conform to 'someone else's' views - doesn't mean you are less of an artist. You are like a bonsai artist, you look at something and see what it can be. :)

    Love you -


  2. These cards are amazing!! Love all the layers and the different stamps.

  3. Howdy,
    I found your blog via Seth Apter's.

    Wanted to see more of your version of Klimt's THE KISS. When I happened upon this post.

    You are HILARIOUS!!!!! I laughed, and chuckled and guffawed - you sound like me. My hubby says I have ADHD. But I just say 'I'm distracted because I'm a genius.' Then he agrees with me - and we go about our business!

    Would love for you to visit my blog when you have a moment or 2.


    1. I am SO ashamed of myself because I didn't remember about being featured in Seth's blog...even though he did send me an email to remind me!!! We're on vacation, if you haven't figured that out already, and important stuff keeps getting pushed to the back burner.

      I'm so happy that you enjoyed the blog and got a bit of humor from my dry sense of it! Most people think I'm just sarcastic...but I'm working hard not to be. I'll happily go visit your blog right now!

      Yes...I too am a genius!


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