Sunday, June 20, 2010

Hey look, a craft!

I know, I'm shocked I'm posting, too.

This is on a canvas, but I hesitate to call it ART because I created it mainly to put some color on my bland dining room wall, so there's no artistic theme to it other than "I think vintage french ads are neat-o!" But I struggle with the idea of art vs. craft regardless. I feel like I go through an artistic thought process, and I'm aiming for a pleasing and polished final project. I don't usually have a deeper meaning behind my work, but I'm also still aiming for a particular feel to what I create. So am I an artistic crafter, or a crafty artist? (And the biggest question: How much of a douche do I sound like? ;P)

Anyway, theory, motivation, etc., let's move on to the pretty.
This is the base of the picture, which I actually really liked on its own, haha. Paint, various stamp inks and stamps were used to create it.

Aaaand this is the finished product! I found the vintage images via Flickr user pillpat (agence eureka), then painted the chipboard branch/vine thingies with crackle paint. The little chipboard piece in the lower left corner is edged with Distress Ink (Tea Dye), then stamped on the word "home" and added the little blingie.
This was SO MUCH FUN. Took forever, but had a GREAT time working on it. =D I'm now working on a set of 3 itty-bitty canvases which I'm very much looking forward to... and will post as soon as I'm done with 'em.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Polyvore Addicts Anonymous

Hi, my name is Samantha, and I'm a Polyvore addict.

*waits for fellow addicts to say "Hi"*

It is my new favorite past time. If I don't have anything to do, I will usually try to find a reason to play on it. I mainly play on it for "Glee"-related purposes (two of my new favorite blogs, "What Would Emma Pillsbury Wear?" and "Glee Dork" both sponsor "Glee"-related fashion challenges regularly, WHEEEE), but I am now going back through the archives of "What Claudia Wore" to find descriptions of the fabulous early-90's fashions of the Baby-Sitters Club members (a book series I read RELIGIOUSLY as a pre-teen) and see if I can translate it to modern fashion. So far, I'm actually making some pretty cute sets! Go fig, Ann M. Martin and her ghostwriters were ahead of their time!

Below are links to two collections I've created, one for "Glee" and one for "BSC". So fun it should be illegal! It feeds that shopping/fashion craving when I'm not feeling so fashionable (nor can I afford to shop), and at the same time it's also helping re-ignite my desire to take better care of myself... I've fallen into an "ugly" slump again, where I don't care about my hair or doing my makeup or looking cute. It usually relates to stress, unfortunately, but I feel the stress alleviating again and I'm noticing that I want to be cute again, too. Yay!

Glee goes to prom!

The Timeless Fashions of the Baby-Sitters Club Series

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Wedding Wednesday

When I posted about my sister's wedding a couple Wednesdays ago, I realized that, hey, I've been involved in a lot of weddings, including my own, and there has been DIY elements in most of them. Granted, a fair amount of them I made the jewelry and that's the end of my involvement, but mine was a collaboration of several crafty people to make it happen.

There was a fair amount of DIY in my wedding, so I'm not going to BOMBARD anyone with it all at once. Instead, I'll just focus on a section of DIY projects that were under the same "umbrella" of crafting for that area. So this week: Invites!

I am VERY fortunate in that I have an acquaintance who is a fantastic graphic designer and photographer (Kristin Cofer), so she took our engagement portraits, and then made a lovely Save-The-Date postcard design, which we printed via on her recommendation.

My ex-stepmom (and mother of my siblings) D'Lin helped my then-18-year-old sister organize my bridal shower, as Sami was my maid-of-honor. They made the invitation for my bridal shower, and it was super-cute:

I love the bride in the middle and the fold-out/cut-out effects. So cute!

Finally, my mom, the scrapbooking/card-making queen, made our wedding invites. All 70+ of them. OY. I tried to help, but this was before I started making cards myself, and at one point my mom just told me to stop and go do something else (nicely). xD She found those adorable circle stickers in the middle of the hearts, they came 12 in a set and each sticker was different, so each invite was different, too! =) The inside was the info printed on decorated vellum.

(Certain parts blurred, obviously, for safety from internet stalkers)

So while I'm not about to put our invite-related goods up against, say, Kenzie Kate, or Hello!Lucky, but considering the invites were NOT an area of the budget we wanted to spend a ton of money on, they beyond served their purpose while looking really cute and meeting the general decorative theme of my wedding (which, yes, was pink and flowers. Not as tacky and young as it sounds, I promise - and will prove later with photographs). Doing it ourselves met our basic needs for a lot less money than if we'd gone through a professional; there's nothing wrong with that, naturally, and if we'd had the money to throw at it, we would have, but it was an easy area to cut the costs and still be happy with the final product. =)

Yay, Weddings! Next time: Favorite wedding websites for cribbing ideas from!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Mother's Day!

So for El Dia De Los Madres, I made cards! SHOCKER. Seriously, though, who doesn't like receiving cards in the mail? ;D

These are the cards I made, from top to bottom: my mom, my paternal grandmother, and my maternal grandmother. My favorite is the one for my mom, and while I like the idea behind the last one, I need to work it out better. Meh. Will continue to play with that one.

My mom loved her card, which made me happy, esp. because she's the one who got me started crafting cards! She does fantastic scrapbook pages, and she shows me all sorts of neat new techniques to try. We couldn't be together this past mother's day, but this upcoming weekend we'll be having a "crafty day" together to make up for it. Can't wait!

Monday, April 26, 2010


My sister Sami, god bless her little heinie, has actually been married for over a year now! BUT she's an Air Force wife, which means her "wedding" was in a courthouse in Montana with a couple of Air Force peeps. SO earlier this month, Ryan and Sami had their "vow recommitment", a.k.a. WEDDING. Ryan is big on family and wanted to have SOME sort of wedding-ish party so the two of them could truly celebrate their love with family, in the traditional sense.
So the challenge was to have a beautiful wedding, but on the cheap-ish. They rented a really nice hall in her town, and luckily for Sami, her mom and her sister are both crafty mf-ers, as well as some of her in-laws!It really was an insanely DIY wedding, but if you didn't know it, I think most people would think it'd been professionally done. I actually didn't get to help with the design part (DAMMIT, that's my favorite part!), but Sami's mom did a fabulous job with it. My contribution was her wedding jewelry. Sami's aunt made their invitations (which I stupidly never took a picture of, it turned out cute), and her MIL handled all the food! It was crazy... and crazy beautiful and crazy DELICIOUS. OM NOM NOM NOM NOM.

So here's what I can show you that was DIY from the wedding:FYI, they did the ceiling part. Don't know how, but it's flippin' gorgeous. The chair covers were also made by us (on a looooong Saturday)The centerpieces were also DIY - fake flowers, but it worked. I draped the pearls along the rims and added the butterflies (all Sami's mom design, though!)

The favors: Decoupaged papier-mache boxes that were painted gold, and filled with homemade white chocolate-peppermint candies.
The arch was also designed and decorated by D'Lin, Sami's mom.

My contribution! I didn't come up with this design, I used the very simple tutorial here.

The necklace! It went nicely with my sister's ivory and light brown Maggie Sottero. This was also modified to have less pearls; my sister's neck is very, very tiny (unlike mine), so I removed most of the pearls and added another pair of the small Swarovski flowers, one on each side. =)

I wish I could post a card I made her for her wedding, but I ran out of time 'cuz it was a crazy weekend (we also went to the SF Giants home opener the day before, and saw our newly-pregnant friends the day after - for which I made the card, which I left at home, heh). I felt like a jerk for using a bought card, but time ran out on me. =/ I DID make her a lovely homemade card for her bridal shower, though! Here it is:

So yeah, this is looking to be the only wedding we're involved in, which is kind of nice. Last year we had 3 (one of which we couldn't attend thanks to my back going out on me the day of the 3rd wedding), and almost every year before that we had at least one (including ours, 3 years ago this June!). The Hubs and my first year of dating, we actually attended 5 weddings in a 14-month period! Luckily, I actually enjoy attending them, and I loooove making stuff for them (and doing DIY stuff for my own). My favorite part are just the little personal touches; yes, most weddings are formulaic, but the details is where you can set yours apart, and THAT'S what I love, love, love. So much that I miss buying "Martha Stewart Weddings". ;p

I swear, if I could find someone who loved micro-managing and wanted me to come up with all the great concepts and design the wedding, we would be millionaires. F'Reals.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

I've been busy...

SO. I suck at updating, I realize that. It's not for lack of want, it's lack of having anything relevant to share, heh. That, and this blog isn't a "habit" yet. Trying to make it one, though! Just need to find my niche. In the meantime, here's my latest project: a congratulations card for a friend that recently announced his wife is preggers! I need to mail it to them still, so no reactions from the parents-to-be yet. :)

I found the onesies stamp at Michael'a in the dollar bin, and modified the diaper pattern from one on the Martha Stewart website, in the card crafts section. I see flaws, but overall I'm actually pretty proud of it! I think it's super cute. :)

Saturday, April 3, 2010

40 ?'s beauty meme (stolen from Messy Carla)

One of my big focuses this year is to find my way back to feeling good about myself. I've let myself go for a long time, and I'm trying to increase my awareness (and desire) to primp myself more.

I'm also a sucker for filling out memes and surveys, esp. ones that ask me questions about myself. xD MessyCarla posted this great one! Wheee!

Link back if you decide to fill this out for yourself! I love hearing/reading other people's beauty recommendations.

How many times do you wash your face daily?
Not as much as I should - I only do it once a day, in the morning. Should probably do it at night, though. =/ (might steal Messy Carla's idea of finding a good face wipe to use instead... better than nothing!)

What skin type do you have?
Oily-ish. It's changed as I've gotten older. Basically, if I wash my face and DON'T moisturize, I get pretty greasy in my t-zone as my skin's way of giving itself moisturizer... but my cheeks and chin break out more often than my forehead and nose. So I'm not sure anymore. It's probably combination-to-oily.

What is your current facial wash?
Dermalogica special cleansing gel. Friggin' expensive, but the Dermalogica stuff makes my skin feel fantastic (when used regularly).

Do you exfoliate?
Once a week. Might try doing it twice a week, though.

What brand do you use?
Dermalogica Skin Prep Scrub

What moisturizer do you use?
Dermalogica Active Moist

Do you have freckles?
I have moles. Lots and lots of moles. Mostly on my face and arms, as they see more sun than the rest of my body.

Do you use eye cream?
Not currently, but I think I might have to start soon. Starting to get wrinkly up in the creases!

Do you or did you have acne prone skin?
Yes. I used Retin-A for a few months in 10th grade. It worked TOO well, as I was also on the swim team at the time, and the Retin-A + chlorine = super-dry skin! Ugh. My face looked like it was snowing.

Did you ever have to use Pro-activ?

What foundation do you use?
I don't. I like Prescriptives, I've used that before. But I hate the feel of heavy foundation, so I use tinted moisturizer (Lorac)

How about concealer?
No, just try a little extra moisturizer and some powder to set it.

Do you know your undertone colour?
green - I glow olive green under my skin.

What do you think of false eyelashes?
I love them in moderation (unless they're on drag queens, then the more the merrier!). I personally don't wear them, 'cuz I have super-long and thick eyelashes naturally.

Did you know that you are supposed to change your mascara every 3 months?
Yes, but I don't use it as frequently as I should so I usually go for 6 months at a time. Heh.

What brand of mascara do you use?
Maybelline Great Lash. I stick with the classics. xD

Sephora or MAC?
I love MAC, but I like Sephora, too - I like variety!

Do you have a MAC pro-card?

What make-up tools do you use in make up application?
I bought them from E.L.F. Heh. Cheapies! I use a shadow blender eyeliner brush

Do you use make up base/primer for the eyes?
I usually just use a super-light shade of the color I'm using for my eyes at that time.

For the face?

What is your favourite eyeshadow (colour or shade)?

Plum! It makes my hazel eyes pop.

Do you use pencil or liquid eyeliner?
pencil - liquid's too harsh for my style.

How often do you poke your eyes with a pencil eyeliner?
Very, very rarely. It HAS happened, though. OMG does that sting.

What do you think of pigment eyeshadows?
If I was more adventurous, I'd probably love them. As it is, I like sheerer shades so I can have more control over their intensity.

Do you use mineral make-up?
I tried it as a base, but it sets so damn fast that I couldn't get good coverage. Plus it felt like my skin couldn't breathe with it on. =( I have to amend this to say that I used mineral makeup again for my sister's wedding, with a mix my ex-stepmom made me for my own wedding. Using a big brush REALLY helps, and the coverage is excellent when you have a sunburn. My face looked normal instead of bright red! Still heavy-feeling though, will stick with my tinted moisturizer. =)

What is your favourite lipstick?
My favorite lipstick ever was Cliniques "Sandy Beach", which was a pinky-tan sparklyish lipstick. I don't really wear lipstick, though, it feels icky on my lips and fades too easily.

How about lipgloss?
LOVE lipgloss. I wear cheapies to Stila, I ain't picky, haha. My favorite is Lancome Juicy Tubes in Pink Lemonade.

What is your favourite blush to use?
I have a mineral-based one that I really like, but I use it VERY infrequently. I have very round cheeks that don't really need highlighting. xD

Do you buy your makeup on Ebay?
Never have, and probably never will. Nothing against eBay, just don't need makeup that bad. xD

Do you like drugstore makeup?
I have no problem with drugstore makeup! I buy eyeshadows and lip gloss from drugstores, cheaper and I don't feel so guilty if I don't like the color.

Do you go to CCO's (cosmetic company outlets)?
I have no idea what this is.

Did you ever consider taking make-up classes?
I've thought about it - I do enjoy applying makeup, and I think I'm decent at it. I loved designing stage makeup as a theater major in college.

Are you clumsy in putting on makeup?
Not really; I have steady hands from crafting and watercoloring. =D

Name a makeup crime that you hate?
Tattooed eyebrows. FUG.

Do you like colourful shades of makeup (lipstick, eyeshadow) or neutral ones?
I'm all about natural makeup. I'm a firm believer in makeup enhancing your natural beauty. I have no issue with people wearing colorful makeup, though, as long as it's well-done. =)

Which celebrity always has great make up?
Anne Hathaway. She's just gorgeous.

If you could leave the house using just ONE make up item, what would you use?
Tinted moisturizer. It evens out my skin tone.

Could you ever leave the house without any makeup on?
Do it all the time! I love makeup, but it usually gets left behind if I'm running late or feeling lazy.

Do you think you look good without any make up on?
I think it depends on my skin condition that day. If my skin's rough-looking, then no. If I'm fresh out of the shower, I think I look lovely, though. xD

In your opinion, what is the BEST makeup line?
I <3 style="font-weight: bold;">What do you think of make up?
I think the last thing it should be is a requirement. It should be fun and make you feel good, but I think people should feel just as comfortable with themselves without it. I mean, if you wear it all the time because you LIKE to wear it, by all means! I also don't think people should use it as a way of hiding themselves, either - I fear that people who wear a ton and/or go for overly-dramatic eyeliner and lipstick are hiding themselves, and should go for a more natural look. It's meant to make what you have look even better, not completely hide your face!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Yet another obsession

WWEPW - Hairography "What Emma WOULD wear"
WWEPW - Hairography "What Emma WOULD wear" by dlishly-girly featuring Ted Baker shoes

I'm obsessed with dressing "Emma Pillsbury". I blame "What Would Emma Pillsbury Wear?", which I discovered through Tom and Lorenzo when they posted an interview they did with WWEPW. (Pretty common how I discover other blogs, I find them through clicking from a link in a favorite blog to another blog, and then I see an interesting link in THAT blog, and so on... it's like a Rube Goldberg of clicking to get from one site to the newly loved site. xD)

WWEPW has fashion challenges where you re-dress Emma with an item from a previous outfit, and they use the site called Polyvore to create the collages. OMG I HAVE ALREADY MADE 4 COLLAGES, THEY'RE SO MUCH FUN. It's like shopping and being a personal stylist, as well as invoking my love of paper dolls from when I was a kid! LOVE IT. SO MUCH FUN.

AND playing with Polyvore via WWEBW's group has led me to a NEW glee blog to love, Glee Dork. It's the Ciiiircle of Liiiiiife, and it rules us allll...

Thursday, February 25, 2010

On my back and unable to craft!

I'm so sad to say I haven't touched anything crafty in so long... last Friday morning, my last day of school vacation, I strained my lower back. Unfortunately, this wasn't the first time, and just as annoyingly it happened under relatively mundane circumstances. I won't go into a long diatribe of why it probably happened, other than to say that I'm now damned determined to not let it happen EVER AGAIN. Why? Aside from being all "hurty" (to quote Ralph Wiggum), It's SO BORING TO LAY ON YOUR BACK ALL WEEKEND AND WEEK. I can't walk my dog farther than the complex pool (which is maybe 50 feet from our apartment), and she's going NUTS, poor baby. I can't craft, can't shop, can't do anything, really.

I'm getting close to being 100% again, but this was probably the worst I've ever strained it so it's taking longer to heal, sadly. I'm at the point where I can walk around a little more, but I'm still not standing up straight. It's gone from really painful to really uncomfortable. I probably could have crocheted all this time on my back, but I'm more feeling card-making, haha. That's the craft I can't really do right now, though! Argh! I actually NEED to make a card or two now! xD

So instead I'll share a couple of blogs that are majorly inspiring to me right now! Fair enough, right?

The Sew Weekly - I actually found her via CRAFT Magazine's blog when she blogged her journey to prepping herself and her friends for "A Gatsby Afternoon" (which I WILL go to one day, oh yes...). CRAFT linked her up again as she started this blog, and her love of vintage + her Bay Area references (I'm from the area as well, and miss it terribly) = I LOVE THIS BLOG. It makes me want to get my sewing machine fixed so I can start sewing again, more than any other inspiration - and I studied costume design in college, for chrissakes!

Vickie Howell blog - I have to admit, I know how to knit but I've never been a fervent knitter like other people are, so Vickie was always kind of a "meh" for me. Nothing against her, I just wasn't that into what I thought was her main craft or most of her patterns. =) BUT I discovered her blog today, and it's not all knitting! It's actually full of great craft projects.

Heart of Light - She is life-living inspiration. Not only is she a very talented crafter (I love her rosebuds and wish I'd thought of it first, dammit!), but her postings about the little things she does to make her life beautiful simply fill me with awe and wonderment. She reminds me that life is for LIVING, not existing. At the very least, I'm copying her "Friday flowers" idea... but mine will be Saturdays 'cuz that's when I can get to the Farmer's Market. ;D

Friday, February 12, 2010

V-Day 2010

V-Day 2010
Originally uploaded by mantequilla81

Ahhhh, god bless holidays that give me an excuse to make cards!

Actually, it was last year's V-day that made me interested in card-making in the first place. I was inspired by an online friend's decoupaging of tissue papers on card stock to make Xmas cards, and since I do love to decoupage, I thought it'd be fun to make V-day postcards for my friends and family. I ended up making a few actual cards, too. Here's some of the postcards I made. Crazy how I've been doing this for a year and now I'm totally hooked.

The funny thing is, I still kind of turn my nose up at scrapbooking, which is basically CARD-MAKING on a bigger scale! It's not that I don't like pictures, I just think that most scrapbooking I see tends to be a bit cutesy and cloying, even when done well. I know, I'm a snob. I still like to look at it, but make it? Meh. Maybe I'll change my tune when I have kids, although having a totally cute dog hasn't inspired me to change my tune. O__o

Regardless, I less than 3 (<3) Valentine's day. Not just because I have a Valentine (although yes, I do), but because I love love. I try to act all cool and cynical, but dammit, I'm a big gushy lovebug at heart. Not romantic love, though, just the act of love. I love my family, I love my friends, I love The Hubs, I love my dog (she's so cute OMG, you readers are so lucky I don't turn this into a dog-blog), and I love having a day to shower them with gushy affection. I do hate how this holiday makes people feel lonely, though, but I LOVE having the excuse to make pretty cards for them to cheer them up!

This year, though, I admittedly got a leetle lazy with it and only made intricate cards for certain family members and out-of-state friends. My local friends are getting kitschy school-style valentines when I see them, and The Hubs is getting candy and a printed-out card of a TV character he likes 'cuz I think it'd be funny and he won't expect it. ;D

Actually, now that the cards are made and shipped off, I'm planning on making more love-themed crafts, but they won't be card-related. I've been wanting to try my hand at pocket shrines and altered books for a while, and now I'm going to work on that. One will be for a grandma who has a bday coming up (pocket shrine), I think, along with an order from my mom to make her another neck-scarflette like the one I made Grandma for xmas - apparently Grandma really likes it and wears it all the time, haha. I can't wait to play with them, though, and show you my results!

Happy Valentine's Day! Don't make it about romance, make it about showing everyone you care about that you think they're lovely.