Time flies…..

Holy moley! Can it really be 2 weeks since I last posted? I can’t believe how busy I’ve been. Got lots to talk about so let’s catch up, shall we?

I took a mini-vacation from the 9th thru the 13th – I even booked a junior exec suite at a hotel near O’Hare for some much needed R&R. I had a great work space….huge desk, with a an additional side console, plenty of natural light and a great comfy desk chair. I worked on some stuff, but I was seriously struggling to find the muse. Have no idea where it went. Most of my suitcase was packed with supplies – I couldn’t narrow down what to take with me. That should have been my first clue about the elusive art muse! Darn her! I wasn’t that far from home if I needed anything, but the point was to take a weekend for myself and not be home. So I ended up overpacking. My suitcase was so heavy, you’d have thought I was going to be away from home for a month. Who knew all those supplies could be so darned heavy?
So there I am on Fri nite, all the supplies spread out in front of me, endless creative possibilities. I had completed a make-up stamping class earlier in the day for one I missed during the week so I figured that my creative mojo should be working no problem. Uh, no…I couldn’t have been more wrong. Everything I stamped came out streaked funny-looking. I couldn’t coordinate paper & colors. I hated everything I tried to assemble. I finally gave up around 1AM & went to bed.
On Sat, I went to a stamping class & then did a little shopping. I picked up some dinner & figured I’d try again. Took me forever to figure out what I wanted to do, but I was determined to use some of the cool stamps I brought with me. Now I’m not one for the new inchies craze I keep hearing about, butI had picked up some the new inchie stamps by Inkadinkado. The designs are really cool & not cutesy or cartoonish. I ended up using the inchies the rest of the weekend instead of all the other clear stamp sets I brought with me. Go figure. While I was out I had picked up a box of pre-cut white chipboard inchies by Inchie Arts. They’re so easy to use & they take distress ink really well. Here’s some pictures of the cards I made using the Inkadinkado inchies and Inchie Arts chipboard inchies:
So for all my stressing over the lack of artistic muse, my mini vacation didn’t end badly. I made 6 cards & completed 1/2 of a chipboard album. I’ll take some more pictures & try to post those by tomorrow.
I forgot to mention that I used black archival ink to stamp the images. I colored in the background using different distress ink pads and a small stipple brush.

The never-ending project…

Like most long-time stampers, I faced the day almost 2 years ago that I was running out of room for all my wood mounted stamps. I already had a mix of mounted & unmounted stamps. So I decided to unmount all my wood mounted stamps. Oh no! The horror! lol! What’s a girl to do?? For all you wood mounted purists, I can hear your hearts breaking. I had no choice…there was literally no more room.

I started this project very naively. Figured it was no big deal. Just a few weeks of work. Maybe a month or 2 at the most. I purchased about 20 sheets of cling foam on line from Sunday International since no one local had it & got started. I am a complete idiot. It took me almost a year to finish the ones I already had. I also didn’t take into account any new ones I would purchase along the way – both mounted & unmounted – that needed to be mounted on the cling foam. Guess who tries to buy mostly unmounteds now? That’s right, me! Why, you ask? Because I neglected to mention that not all companies use the same methods or adhesives to mount the stamp to the wood. I learned that the hard way…after many blisters & broken nails. I had to finally put some in the microwave for 10-20 seconds to soften them enough to remove from the wood mount.

I also didn’t plan in advance a system to catalog each one. Yeah I know, I’m an idiot. I already told you. At first I decided to stamp the image on an index card and write the company name on each card. This was taking too long. Then I get the bright idea that I should just yank the indexing sticker from the wood mount since the stamp company name is on there and just paste or tape it to an index card. Ah, so much easier! And yet so dumb! What about the stamps that don’t have an indexing sticker? What about the stamps that have the index image printed directly on the wood? Like I said, no advance planning. I had purchased a new printer that had a scanner & got the bright idea to scan the images by company. I could then keep them in a file by company in my laptop. Genius! Ok, not so much. I still have a box of indexes that need to be scanned.

So here we are, almost 2 years later. 95% of my stamps are now on cling foam. Still trying to organize a good system to catalog everything. I have a huge collection of stamps – combination regular rubber & clear. And I’m running out of room again!