An Altered Birdhouse Tale

House of Dreams - Front

(clicking the photos will enable you to see them larger, and in detail in a new window)

July was a wonderfully hellish sort of month for me: deadline after deadline…. after deadline… after deadline… the grand opening of The Altered Abbey and fixing any minute problems that entailed, some personal stuff, adding inventory (still haven’t completed that!) etc. etc. etc.

House of Dreams - Front 2

House of Dreams - Front 3

House of Dreams - Side Front Close-up

House of Dreams - Front Close-up 2

House of Dreams - Front Close-up

Some basic frontal views of the house. The roofline is lined with glass beads, the roof made up of paper and faux copper leafing, the letter ‘n’ is covered in shimmer and also lined with the copper leafing, hand painted wood eggs & half eggs, nesting materials, stickers, mini mulberry flowers, mushroom birdies, skeleton leaves and more comprise this….

Which, is precisely why I swore off any swaps during that time.. until The Altered Birdhouse Swap came up over at The Embellished Circus.. once again, I let temptation have its way with me! I was absolutely THRILLED when I found out I would be creating a piece for my dear friend Nici… she is one of those gifted artists and kind souls that I just truly hope to continue forming a friendship with. Some folks, you just find a connection with… y’all know how that goes!

I decided to try and customize this piece just for her; I knew it just simply had to have a bit of shimmer, some kind of fabulous handmade paper, skeleton leaves and of course.. glass beads! When I think of Nici, I somehow always picture blues and greens … and that was the start of my idea.

House of Dreams - Back

House of Dreams - Back Side View 2

House of Dreams - Back Side View

House of Dreams - Back Close-up

House of Dreams - Roof View

Some views of the back of the house; The roofline is lined with glass beads, the roof made up of paper and faux copper leafing, handmade paper, paints, inks, mini folders, skeleton leaves, twigs, handmade mulberry flower heads, mini buttons, stickers and more comprise this…

Using an unfinished wood birdhouse, I set out to create what I hoped would be a treasure for her. It didn’t come out exactly as I had envisioned it as I had wanted to hand bead every flower on the paper sides… and a few other things went wrong… but when all was said & done, I was mostly pleased with the results. It is my sincere wish that she is enjoying it.

I will be posting a basic tutorial for this on my website, I am hoping this weekend to have worked out the kinks to the learning center, and have all the tutorials posted! Keep your fingers crossed!

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this, as I will most certainly be creating more! Not quite feeling like my long-winded self today, so feel free to fire off any questions you may have!

Always, Chrysti

P.S. I received an adorable little birdhouse from Maralena for the swap, she put so much thought into it… and I am ever so grateful to her for it. Check it out at her Blog!

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Projects In Progress & Ramblings

 “Imagination gallops; judgment merely walks”

With all the commotion and reorganizing happening in my life recently, somehow it slipped my mind to post my results for an older Try It Tuesdays Week 4  Torn Paper Backgrounds (I may be a bit late eh?). Nancy did a fabulous job with the tutorial.

Nothing overly spectacular, but I was still pretty pleased with the results.. I tried my hand at altering a CD, and a box. Take a look here…

 Try It Tuesdays - Torn Paper Backgrounds- Altered Box

 Try It Tuesdays - Torn Paper Backgrounds- Altered Box

 Try It Tuesdays - Torn Paper Backgrounds - Altered CD

 Try It Tuesdays - Torn Paper Backgrounds - Altered CD

“It is better to have enough ideas for some of them to be wrong, than to be always right by having no ideas at all.”
~Edward de Bono

Another project I have in progress is this Altered Binder, to store my ATC and ACEO collection. I started off absolutely loving it, but have since royally messed up the inside cover… grrr.

 Altered Binder - Work In Progress - Cover

 Oh Well, It still beats the worn down plain white binder I had. When it’s complete, I’ll show you the rest, and just how I managed to make a mess of the inside!

 Altered Binder - Work In Progress - Inside Front Cover

 Altered Binder - Inside Back Cover

However, having a prettier way to store these.. caused me to actually be excited about my collection again. I’ve cleaned it out, and thinned it down a bit as I plan on trying to keep it just to this one album, and other various displays I have.. which one day I’ll share.

 Altered Binder - Work In Progress - Back Cover

 Altered Binder - Work In Progress - Spine

“Creativity comes from trust. Trust your instincts. And never hope more than you work.”
~Rita Mae Brown

In yet another creative venture … Chel started a new group on E-bay, for artists who run E-bay stores, and I was honored that she asked me to help moderate it. One of the activities going on is a logo contest for this fab new group. I had so much fun playing with digital collage again, and if this doesn’t win (it’s up against some gorgeous entries!), I will probably use a variation of it for one of my ventures. At any rate, here’s what I came up with..

 Art in Store Logo Entry 2

 Art in Store Logo Entry 1

I used Paint Shop Pro, and altered an image from one of Paper Relics CD’s. Hope is one of the nicest people to work with, her products are amazing.. of the highest quality.. and her customer service is phenomenal. She was even kind enough to give me a free CD for my birthday when I ordered the other 2 .. You have noooooo idea how much I needed that little pick me up then. Truly, I can’t recommend shopping with her enough. Run on over and check out her amazing store. Trust me, you’ll walk away inspired.

 “One of the advantages of being disorderly is that one is constantly making exciting discoveries.”
~A. A. Milne

My ‘Holiday’ weekend, has been pretty much of the same.. cleaning out, reorganizing my art studio, my store, listing new items, packing & shipping orders, revamping Try It Tuesdays and so on. Emails have been piling up and I need to knock em out soon. It’s difficult with my hand tics, how sore my wrist/fingers get and how my tendons swell as a result of being on the computer so much.

Basically a plethora of boring stuff, but as I’ve mentioned previously, necessary evils. Life won’t be much fun until I complete all this, but when I do, lookout world! In the meantime, can someone send me help, or gimme a few extra hours per day?

Better yet? A remote with a ‘pause the rest of the world on it‘.. how amazing would that be? Simply hit pause, take the time you need to catch up.. then Bam! Hit play, and live life as normal! I think I’m onto something here.

“You wait for a gem in an endless sea of blah.”
~Lawrence Grossman
Sorry for such a blah post.. but it’s one of those days, where it’s difficult to have much enthusiasm about anything.. I’m not down, just not up either. Somewhere in between the 2 I suppose. I haven’t been in the art studio for a few days, so I’m thinking.. that may be partially why. It’s amazing, the difference in my moods when I get a lil art time.

Well, enough of that, It’s time to grab lunch, then work on announcing the Try It Tuesday Winner :-) Hope you’re all having a fabulous Monday!

Chrysti