orlando here we come!
Tomorrow morning at the crack of dawn, Paul and I will be loading up the car for a 14 hour drive to Orlando FL. The cat sitter will be here taking care of the kitties so we won't have to worry about Stan and Mabel!

We'll be spending most of our trip working on our house and getting it ready for new renters, visiting family and catching up!

I'll be updating via Twitter as we travel and while we're away! See you in 2010!


DC snowstorm!
Lots of excitement here with the "Big Blizzard"! Paul and I were all nice and cozy inside, after awhile we got a little cabin fever, ventured out into the snowy downpour and took some cell phone pics! Here they are!

Swann ST NW looking beautiful in the snow!

Tiny car with lots of snow!

Dupont Circle fountain

The day after the storm at Meridian Hill Park in NW
Hero Arts Blog Hop
I was invited to be a part of Hero Arts Blog hop!

Hero Arts sent me a few of their new release stamp designs. It was a fun challenge to work with the images they sent a long. I tried to incorporate as many of the designs as I could into this card:

Here's a list of the stamps that I used:
Silhouette Grass - S5316
Row of Houses - H5328
Antique Engravings - CL383 (small butterfly used)

Other supplies:
Claudine Hellmuth Studio Paints - Landscape Green, Classic Teal , Painterly Pink
Claudine Hellmuth Studio Sticky Back canvas
Claudine Hellmuth Studio Multi Medium in Matte
Claudine Hellmuth Studio brushes
Ranger Inkssentials White Pen
Ranger Adirondack ink pad in Stream
Ranger Archival Jet Black ink pad
Ranger Glossy cardstock
plain paper
black Faber Castell PITT pen size S

And now keep the blog hop going and visit Jenn Biederman to see what she created!
happy birthday to me ... i think
Today is my 35th birthday and I'm not sure how I feel about it.

For me 35 was one of those "mile marker" birthdays. The birthday that seemed so far away in my 20s that I would say to myself "by the time I am 35 I will know X, Y & Z."

Anytime something came up that I didn't know the answer to I would put it off until I was 35.

"By 35 I will know if I want to have kids, or live in the city, or have my illustration career running smoothly."

By 35 it will be figured out. Surely, by then I will know the answers to the questions I have.

Well here's 35! Do I have anything figured out? No way! But I guess that's 1/2 the fun. Right?
don't forget the pets this holiday season!
I can't resist re-posting this photo that I took of Mabel a couple years ago. She got all dressed up in a Santa outfit to remind you not to forget the critters this holiday season!


My good friend Bernie at A Place to Bark has lots of sweet furry babies that need your help!

Even just $5 or $10 would go a long way to helping to support all the animals that she takes in and finds new homes. She was telling me yesterday that she spends $15,000 a year just on pet food not to even mention the vet bills! Wow! By networking with humane societies, she has rescued (and found homes for) over 600 animals this year! yay! go Bernie!!

And you can double your donation! From now until Dec 31st. The Zoline foundation is offering a matching grant for every donation made up to $23k! With this money Bernie would be able to finish her shelter and save many more animals in need.

To donate just scroll down to the 6 Degrees Badge in my right side bar. Your donation is tax deductible too!

Here's a touching video that our friend Lynne Gillis made to promote the fundraiser.

To learn more about A Place to Bark visit the web site

Friend A Place to Bark on Twitter or Facebook to follow along with her adventures!

Spread the word about the great work Bernie does! Post to your blogs, Facebook and Twitter! We need to help A Place to Bark finish the shelter!


new custom artwork
Here's a 16x20 custom canvas artwork order that I just finished up all ready to be shipped in time for Christmas!


I had a great time with this piece and the scuba/beach theme. Especially fun to think of sunny warm days while it's so cold out here in DC!


beeswax collage workshop in Alexandria VA
Just added to my calendar!

A one day Beeswax Collage Workshop in Alexandria VA on Saturday February 6th 2010.

Learn how to create a collage entirely with beeswax - no other glues or adhesives are necessary! You'll learn beeswax transfers, stamping in wax, layering collage, glazing colors and more! Mistakes can not be made with beeswax. If you don't like the placement of your papers you can remove them - even months later - and easily adjust your artwork! You'll be amazed by how easy and fun beeswax collage can be!

A few of the topics that will be covered during this workshop: getting started with the proper materials, collaging with beeswax, beeswax transfers - transfer photocopies directly into wax! beeswax stamping, glazing color to enhance your artwork.

Class details and sign up information are on the Artistic Artifacts Web site. Limited spaces available!


quick update
It's crunch time for me working on custom artwork orders to get them on their way in time for Christmas. I have been a busy bee!

If you left it too late to order your custom artwork,
I have an On Its Way Certificate option. This is a perfect choice to let your recipient know that you have a special gift -- literally on its way! You place the order and all your special someone has to do is sit back and wait for their surprise to arrive. You will receive a certificate and full color brochure to give to your recipient on Christmas Day. Click here for more info.

Gift Certificates are also available too!


quick and easy transfer onto sticky back canvas
I just discovered a new transfer technique using my Claudine Hellmuth Studio Sticky Back Canvas. The transfer is done on the sticky side which makes it very quick and simple too!

Here's what you'll need: Claudine Hellmuth Studio Sticky Back Canvas, Mini Mister filled with water, image to transfer: scrapbook paper, color copy, black and white copy, magazine etc

First peel off the paper backing from your Sticky Back Canvas

Place the image you would like to transfer onto the STICKY side of the Sticky Back Canvas. Here I am using a piece of My Mind's Eye scrapbook paper but you could use a color or b/w laser copy (I haven't tried inkjet prints yet, if you try it let me know if it works!)

Burnish the back of the image with a craft scraper to make sure it has good contact with the Sticky Back Canvas

If you are using a heavy weight paper like a scrapbooking paper, you may want to score the back of the paper *gently* with an xacto knife

Saturate the back of the paper using a water-filled Mini Mister

Rub the paper off the back. Keep spraying with water from the Mini Mister to make it easier to rub the paper off .

Optional Step: once you have rubbed off all the paper, you may notice some white fuzzies remaining. To get rid of these spread Claudine Hellmuth Studio Multi Medium in GLOSS all over the image as if you were rubbing in face cream. The resins in the Gloss Multi Medium will make the paper fuzzies
disappear. .

Closeup of the finished transfer! Quick and easy!

Check your local crafts/scrapbook or arts supply store for availability. Claudine Hellmuth Studio Products are for sale online at these locations: Ellen Hutson LLC, Somerset Shoppe, ScrapLovers, Joggles Online, Schmooze with Suze,, Simon Says Stamp, Studio Calico, Scrap in Style TV
. For more videos and information about the Claudine Hellmuth Studio product line, visit my web site!

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easy to make paper holiday village
Here's a fun paper village that is easy to make and will add lots of Christmas cheer to your home! The best part about this little village is that it will cost you next to nothing to make, I am betting you already have many of these items around your house!


Suggested supply list:

STEP ONE: Put the house template (download here) on top of a sheet of old music paper and trace around it with a pencil and then cut it out.

STEP TWO: Draw in where you would like the windows and doors to go.

STEP THREE: Paint in the house. Paint around all the doors and windows leaving them unpainted. Here I am using Dash of Red from the Claudine Hellmuth Studio Line. If you are using these paints, you will notice that they remain transparent and you can still see the music notes even through the color, making a really beautiful effect!

STEP FOUR: Here I added details. I used Claudine Hellmuth Studio Sticky Back Canvas to make the curtains, a black pen and the
Ranger Inkssentials White Pen.

STEP FIVE: Fold all your edges and then glue the tab to the other side of the house with Claudine Hellmuth Studio Multi Medium.

STEP SIX: Pinch the sides to shape the house.

STEP SEVEN: Place the roof template on a piece of scrapbook paper, trace around and cut out

STEP EIGHT: Fold down the center and then add details. Here I added trim but cutting a piece of Sticky Back Canvas

STEP NINE: Put the roof on your house and then place a BATTERY OPERATED tea light candle underneath. DO NOT use a regular tea light candle with flame because it will catch your mini house on fire! You can find Battery tea light candles at home stores like Bed Bath and Beyond, Dollar Store or at your local craft store.

YOU'RE DONE! Here's the little house ready to bring Christmas cheer! It was difficult to capture just how glowing the houses are with the battery tea lights underneath. When you make yours, you will see how magical they are!

Now make a whole bunch more and display them on your mantle! A perfect Holiday Village for your home!

Check your local crafts/scrapbook or arts supply store for availability. Claudine Hellmuth Studio Products are for sale online at these locations: Ellen Hutson LLC, Somerset Shoppe, ScrapLovers, Joggles Online, Schmooze with Suze,, Simon Says Stamp, Studio Calico, Scrap in Style TV
. For more videos and information about the Claudine Hellmuth Studio product line, visit my web site!

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