Confessions of a Craftaholic

Tag: collage

A Cheap Altered Notebook

So today, I finished up a journal. This one, is a cheap composition notebook that I painted and added embellishments and doodles to.

The words say, “Poesias Y Pensamientos” which in spanish means, “Poems and Thoughts”, since that is what I normally have in my journals. I had run out of space in my old one, and I do love a lined journal.

I used these pigment ink markers I bought a long time ago, to doodle on the front cover. It’s fun.

Anyway, I decided to go buckwild with the pages inside, and paint them, too.

That’s a poem, called “Happy Times”. It’s a story about a woman who wasted her life being bitter and now works in a shitty motel. I was thinking of a Paul Simon tune when I wrote this one.

Fun, right? I went today, to purchase some supplies. I’ve got a “product line” in mind for my new etsy shop. I’m excited about it. This time, I’m going to put my all into it, dammit! I get so scrambled sometimes. It’s hard being a sagitarius. I tend to have a scrambled up brain most of the time.

Also, I am thinking of moving my blog onto my website. It’ll still be my blog, but you’ll be reading it from my website, and I’ll be publishing it from there. Not sure yet, though.

The Craftaholic

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Frida Altered (Blank) Journal

Today I finished up a fun project. I found a blank journal, while cleaning up a corner of my apartment, and decided to paint it up, and dress it up.

Here’s what I came up with:

I’m not one to brag, but it did take me some time and lots of love to make this. I like to sit and think about it for a while, get distracted, come back to it, work on it a bit more, get distracted again….that’s how my art works.

I think it’s because I’m so used to getting distracted, that I kind of make it work for me.

Anyhow that frame there, is vintage. The lace is vintage also.

You can CLICK HERE to purchase.

Today is Independance day, which marks the annual hot dog eating contest in Coney Island. While I would much rather stay home and work on art projects and swaps and such, I think I’ll make it out to see people stuff their faces.

The only thing about being a vegetarian, is that I suppose cheese fries will suffice for me, since just the thought of eating a hot dog frankly makes me sick to my stomach.

And that’s it!


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What Brings Me Joy

So today’s art journal spread is a three/four page spread about what brings me joy. I created an extra page, here with a hand list of things that bring me joy.

I realize now though, that I need alphabet stamps. Anyone feeling generous?

This little dragon was cut out from a magazine and caused quite the ruckus in my apartment, since my daughter has the same yen that I have for all things asian. I really do. I love china town so much. It makes me happy, walking along the side streets, browsing through all the little shops. I love it. And yes I love hello kitty. I try to say that it’s my kid that likes Hello Kitty, but I like it too.

That’s the list on the right. I just used a sheet of paper from an old sketch book, and wrote on it. Then I used PAN pastels, since I love them so.

This is what it looks like when you fold out the third page:

I love this! And I was SO excited when I saw those words, “MAKING STUFF”. I almost did a dance.

I really like this a lot.

What brings me joy?

My art. My creativity. My poems. Apple picking in the fall. Road trips in the summer. The stories my husband tells me of all the crazy people he meets.

Swaps. New art supplies. Baking.

My daughter’s laugh. My husband’s laugh. His stories about life in Puerto Rico. Good chocolate. Making stuff that I see in designer shops. Paint on my fingers.



The belief in fairies.

My daughter, when she tells me, I’m her best friend.

These things, they make me happy. I realize today that at times, when we’ve gone through a lot of sadness or difficulty, especially as children, as adults we almost….look for the sadness. Ultimitely, I have to live with me.  And no matter what happened in the past, it will never help, to constantly look back, lest we turn into pillars of salt, like the woman in the old testament.

I should warn you that I’m not sure I’ll be blogging tomorrow, since my lovely shiny friend from Pennsylvania is driving in today, and we are going to the mermaid parade. Although, I’m kind a short, so I’m not promising any amazing shots. Just a warning. But yes, no blog post tomorow. I think. I get a little addicted to blogging. It’s fun.

AND, my hubby and I are going to launch a new and improved etsy shop. We are so excited! It’s going to be a culmination of my work and his, and will have all sorts of vintage inspired handmade goods and supplies.

We are so excited.

Next week, you’ll hear more about it.

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On Gratitude and Gratefulness

So, here’s today’s journal work. I had a lot of fun with this one.

My daughter, in Coney Island. I remember that day, she did not want to go home.

This picture was taken years ago also. I’ll tell you the story. Years ago, I was working for a company that sent me and my department to Disney world, for some corporate meetings. I decided I wanted to take my then boyfriend with me. I still lived with my very conservative (to put it mildly) parents at the time, so I never told them.

Jose and I had so much fun on that trip. I remember those times, when we would go away for weekends, and such. It was so much fun.

What else? Rain clouds are looming. I’m hoping for rain, since for some reason I get so much inspiration when it rains.

That’s all for now.


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The Beginings of my Art Journal

I’ve decided to start working through a new book I got, called “Art Journal Workshop” by Traci Bunkers.

I happened to have this lovely vintage book to work with:

I love it! It’s a vintage children’s school book.

And here’s what I created. I hope you like it. If not, just lie to me and tell me you do.

You can’t see it, but there’s a lot of hand writing.

That little fortune was from some chinese take out a couple days ago. The picture was taken….gosh, about 11 years ago, back when I colored my hair a different shade of red for each mood I was in. I no longer abuse my hair that way. Although sometimes, I do get a little bored. But not to worry, grey hairs are starting to come in so it’s like mother nature’s highlights.

There are a few days of rain reported, which always makes for good baking, cooking, and art making.

I hosted an art swap with my art group, for which I ended up coming back with 5 jars of pearl ex powder, bricks and bricks and bricks of femo clay, liquid sculpey, beads, more seed beads than I know what to do with, and more beads. And more femo clay. And fun fur. Wow. I got a lot of stuff. It was such a blessing! Now, do you all have any good tips for what to do with all this femo clay?

Leave me a comment on my blog, and give me some tips! I’m serious!


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The Craftaholic

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New Year’s Resolutions & Some Collage Work

Today, I finished up a few collage spreads in a notebook of mine. I thought I’d share them with you, and some of my New Year’s Resolutions.

First, the collage work:

Sorry the pictures are crappy.

And here’s my resolutions:

1. No more red meat.

Well, this is because I’m just….not wanting to eat meat anymore. It’s cheaper to be a vegetarian, actually.

2.  And start juicing and drinking healthy smoothies. More often.

I have a really good juicer. I want to start juicing more. I mostly don’t some days because I run out of fruits and vegetables, LOL.

3. Yoga. Every day, dammit!

I love yoga. It is challenging to do with a little one, but my daughter does love doing yoga with me. So I want to do this every day. I try, and then I forget.

4. Incorporate my poetry with my art.

This has always been my goal, since I started getting serious about my art. I love collage work, and did it back before I met my husband. Then I neglected it for other things. I just recently got back into it, so I’m excited to see where this path takes me. I really want to meld my art with my poems.

5. Be happy, no matter what.

That last one is pretty self explanatory. I want to always see the good in life. Too many people, they see the negative, the bad things in life. They focus on the negative. But I’ll end my list, with a quote by Groucho Marx:

“Each morning when I open my eyes I say to myself: I, not events, have the power to make me happy or unhappy today. I can choose which it shall be. Yesterday is dead, tomorrow hasn’t arrived yet. I have just one day, today, and I’m going to be happy in it.”
-Groucho Marx

Be happy, every day. In this new year, choose to find the good in life, and you will always have good to find. It’s the law of the universe. I’m going to make the above quote my motto: to choose to wake up happy every day.

The Craftaholic

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Day 303: My Daughter’s Artwork


“One can be deceived by 3 types of laziness: indolence, inferiority, and the laziness that is attached to negative actions.”

-The Dalai Lama

Woah, dude.  Laziness really does cause bad things to happen. Really. It’s not just that it MAKES bad things happen, as much as you aren’t doing anything, and that idleness is very, very bad. It’s like when your car just sits there idling. It’s wasteful, both to the environment, and to your pocket (because it wastes gas). Spend your time wisely. Life is too short to waste time being lazy.

Today, I made some WIPs with my daughter by my side. Instead of showing you what I made, I want to show you her artwork. She’s only three, but she is a natural born artist, with amazing ability. For this piece, she took a couple shrink plastic buttons from my desk. She also has a regular button there, and some papers that she crumpled and added to the piece, along with some scrap papers that she painted, with purple finger paint.

I love it! She inspires me so much.

Here you can see the crumpled paper, globs of glue, and papers that she layered and collaged on top of the construction paper. I think it’s amazing, especially given the fact that she’s only three years old. Right?

And here’s a cheesy shot of her holding her work:

Today I have a full day! I have a meetup with my craft group. We are going to central park, for some art making in the park. After that, I’m going to a swap. Full and busy day!

Then, I’ll go home, of course.

I have to run. I’ve got to figure out what I want to make with my group today!

The Craftaholic

Day 227: Book-Mixed Media Doll houses by Tally Oliveau & Julie Molina


“Ambition is like love, impatient both of delays and rivals.” -The Buddha

We are an impatient lot, are we not? As artists, we get so caught up in the frenzy of wanting to make it, wanting to make art for a living, that we sometimes get impatient.

Impatience. It’s such an annoying feeling, right? But if we think about the story of the Tortoise and the Hare, we can learn something: that slow and steady wins the race. We don’t need to be in a rush. This is what I tell my husband all the time. Sucess will come. The dreams will be reached. It doesn’t matter how long it takes, what matters is that you put on foot in front of the other, and try. And do it. Keep going, keep working, keep reaching. And then, you’ll see that you will win over the Hare.

Today, I went to Barnes and Noble with my little one, and looked through the craft books. I have to be honest, I am usually quite disappointed in the selection of books out there. All the books I see either copy of of each other, or copy off of the internet craft tutorials and postings seen online. Very few books actually get my attention any more, as most of them have projects that make me wonder why I would do that. There was a “printmaking” book on making your own stamps, and in one section, the lady suggests using paper clips to print. Now, number one, how the heck do you do that without getting paint all over your hands, and number two…paper clips? Really? Give me something that challenges me, you know?

So I was very excited to find the book, “Mixed Media Dollhouses” by Tally Oliveau and Julie Molina. OMG. This is a book that takes your collage and mixed media to the next level. What the artists do, is show you how to take cigar boxes, and turn them into dollhouses. Taking two three or four boxes, each of them making a room. She gives you techniques and ideas, not just a laundry list of supplies that you will have to scour the internet for. That’s what’s cool. I can’t wait to start making my own dollhouse! I will probably use shoe boxes since here in New York City, the dumb ass cigar shops want to charge you up to $15 for a box. Can you believe that crap? When they tell me that I just want to punch them. Opportunistic jerks.

Anyhow, the other nice thing is that the ideas showcased are not just in one style. There are vintage dolls, Sea and mermaids, gothic, circus, and other themed houses. This is nice, because it lends for ALL types of people to find their own sort of inspiration, and make a statement that is all their own. Few books do this, and more of them should. I love it when I can pick up a craft book, and draw from it what my personal style is, and that is what this book does. From making furniture, to assembling, and making paper dolls, this book gives you the tools you need to start creating your own beautiful doll houses. This book is definitely worth the money, and I highly reccomend you run out and buy it right now.

To see more of the author’s work, you can visit their websites:

Tally Oliveau-Papier Studio

Julia Molina- Mad Hat Studio

The Craftaholic

Day 202: A Simple Twist of Fate


“A learned person will become noble only when he or she has put into real practice what has been learned, instead of just mere words.”

Talk, talk, talk. Some people I know, and some people in the world, they really talk a good talk. They talk about spirituality, about living a life of peace, of oneness. But then, if they find something you do that hurts their feelings, they simply stop talking to you, as a child in elementary school does. This is a very childish and popular thing to do in New York. No one communicates their feelings, or tells you, listen you hurt my feelings, or you crossed a line. They just stop speaking to you. What a childish and immature thing to do. Even my two year old handles her feelings better than that. Really.

It’s not enough to just talk a good talk, and try to convince the world that you are this hippy beatnick who wants a revolution. A REAL person who wants peace and revolution lives a life of revolution, not childishness. It’s not just about being kind to the environment, and pointing out other people’s mistakes as they make them (actually, that’s really annoying). Think about this: did Ghandi act the way you did? Did Frida Khalo act this way? Or Che Guevara? I don’t think they any of them had time for cattiness or selfishness, and I would think that Ghandi would confront a person, rather than just stop speaking to a person.

So when you are out there and someone does something that bothers you, as people will, don’t go through friendship after friendship, seeking the “perfect” person to be your friend. Friendship isn’t marriage. I don’t have to be you, I just have to listen to you.

I’m writing about this, because  I find that people don’t want a friend, they want someone to be their mirror image. But that’s not what friendship is about. I know this is a New York thing, because most of the friends I DO have are not from here.

I’ve said it before: art has no place for cattiness and pettiness. I don’t have the time, and art doesn’t either. Art & Spirituality have so much in common in that sense. Both of them express a deeper part of you, and for this reason, they go hand in hand. Art expresses a part of yourself that perhaps you may not be able to speak in words. Spirituality does also. Do us all a favor, and look at our friends, the cats and dogs. I mean, if they have a problem with another cat or dog, you can hear them bark. They will tell you what’s what. They don’t hold things in. Let’s be that way. Let’s be like our friends, the cats and dogs that may bark or want to fight, but at least they “speak their mind”. Don’t hold things in. EXPRESS yourself. COMMUNICATE.

That’s why I love observing animals. We are like animals in so many ways, but when it comes to communication, animals are better at this than we are. We regard ourselves as being so much more evolved than animals, but in fact…animals don’t get divorced or go through friendships like water or cigarettes. Just food for thought.

Today’s crafty endeavor is some collage work. I was really inspired by one of my favorite Bob Dylan albums, “Tangled Up in Blue”. One of my favorite songs on this album is “A Simple Twist of Fate”. This is a pre-made accordion album. Each panel is going to based on a few lines from the said song. Here’s the first one:

This one is based on the lines, “They sat together in the park, as the evening sky grew dark”

Here’s the next one:

This one is based on the lines, “She looked at him and he felt a spark, tingle to his bones”

So, what do you think? Obviously, I have a lot more to go. It takes me time to piece these together, so that’s why I’ve only got two panels done. If you’re wondering what the lyrics are, here’s a link.

What else? I ordered some supplies, so when they come in, we’ll have ourselves a little Bob Dylan challenge. This time, with a prize.

The Craftaholic

Day 134: Make Postage Paper Art


“If the mind is dominated by hatred, the best part of the brain which is used to judge right and wrong, does not function properly.”

This reminds me of those days when you just wake up on the wrong side of the bed. You know those days, when you just don’t feel like being anyone’s wife or mother. You just feel like retreating somewhere.

New York City is such an interesting place. It’s so full of people. Everywhere. Here, you can always count on something being open.  Hustle and bustle. With this scurry, there is also the negative aspect of being in the city: the rush, the crowded trains, the overpriced rental property, the landlords that get away with murder. Sometimes we city folk get so caught up with the negativity that we often begin to let it fill our mind and our heart.

We often allow this negativity to consume us. Bad things happen all the time. It’s life. That’s just the way it is. The world around us does not have to determine our mood or the way we look at life. Christians have a saying, “we are in the world but not of the world”. They say this meaning that we are not to get consumed with the materialism and ego of the world around us. It’s an interesting thought. Don’t let the bastards drag you down. That’s my thought.

It reminds me of an episode of the golden girls. The ladies are sitting at the kitchen table chatting about the time they got their period. Then, Estelle Getty (as Sophia) says, “I got it, nobody told me. I didn’t get it, nobody told me. I figured, ‘that’s life’, and went back to my meatballs.”

I love that. It’s true, we just need to not let ourselves get so consumed by the world around us. Put your faith in you, and in your hard work and your efforts to make your dreams come true, and then get back to your knitting, lest you end up feeling uninspired and end up eating chocolate, right out of the box.

Today’s crafty endeavor is so much fun. I discovered something at my local stamp store, called “Postage Paper”. I bought it of course. I thought I had discovered all there was to discover with paper arts! But each day I learn something new.

It’s easy to make some mixed media postage paper art. It’s apparently called “Artistamps”.

I made a few today, and made a little accordion book for my stamps, so I can showcase them properly. I haven’t filled it, but I will in time. The accordion book is just a couple pieces of scrap card stock, glued and folded in an accordion.

To color the back ground, I used my own shimmer mist. You should just make your own, I think.

Here’s what the background looked like. I used gold, red, and brown glimmer mist.

Here’s the finished work!

This one includes a worry doll from my collection. Cool right? The car is from K& Co.

A spare matryoshka doll I had laying around in my jewelry supplies. The paper is (i think) DCWV, and I just cut a little cloud freehand.

Like it?

You can buy the postage paper from 100 Proof Press.

The Craftaholic

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