Saturday, March 27, 2010

Altered Red Hat Society Notebook

                                  The Red Hat Society Miniature Altered Notebook

    One day while shopping at Michaels I saw these large bags of various size cuts of paper to be used in all sorts of projects. One of the scrap papers had the “Red Hat Society” image, colors and paper designs. For those who do not know about the red hat society, here is a brief history:

The Red Hat Society (RHS) is a social organization founded in 1998 for women approaching the age of 50 and beyond. As of July 2009, there are over 70,000 registered members and almost 24,000 chapters in the United States and 25 other countries. The Red Hat Society is the largest women’s social group in the world. They are truly inspired by the following poem:


With a red hat which doesn't go, and doesn't suit me.

And I shall spend my pension on brandy and summer gloves

And satin sandals, and say we've no money for butter.

I shall sit down on the pavement when I'm tired

And gobble up samples in shops and press alarm bells

And run my stick along the public railings

And make up for the sobriety of my youth.

I shall go out in my slippers in the rain

And pick the flowers in other people's gardens

And learn to spit

You can wear terrible shirts and grow more fat

And eat three pounds of sausages at a go

Or only bread and pickle for a week

And hoard pens and pencils and beer mats and things in boxes

But now we must have clothes that keep us dry

And pay our rent and not swear in the street

And set a good example for the children.

We must have friends to dinner and read the papers.

But maybe I ought to practice a little now?

So people who know me are not too shocked and surprised

When suddenly I am old, and start to wear purple.


The Red Hat Society’s primary purpose is social interaction among women, and to encourage fun, friendship, freedom and fulfillment. The goal is for members to bond as they travel through life together. The Society is not a sorority or a voluntary service club. There are no initiations or fundraising projects.

A founder or leader of a local chapter is usually referred to as a "Queen". Members are called "Red Hatters". Members 50 and over wear red hats and purple attire to all functions. A woman under age 50 may also become a member, but she wears a pink hat and lavender attire to the Society's events until reaching her 50th birthday. She is referred to as a “Pink Hatter.”

There are two ways of belonging to the Red Hat Society: as a Queen (usually leader of a local chapter; however, no Queen is required to lead a chapter) and as a Supporting Member. Membership dues are paid annually to the Red Hat Society.


Both Red and Pink Hatters often wear very elaborately decorated hats, and attention-getting fashion accessories, such as a feather boa, at the group's get-togethers. The Society's events vary depending on the chapter, but one of the most common pastimes among Red Hatters is attending or hosting a tea party.

So, the next time you see an older lady who is wearing a purple dress with a red hat, remember that it doesn’t matter what age you are to have fun.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Altered Art Friendship Card and Tag

Pretty Things

        A few years ago I was in a Secret Sister swap on the Cricut board. The goal of the swap was to make and buy items for your special “Secret Sister.” During the course of that swap, I became really close to my partner Lynne. She went above and beyond the requirements. She sent me spirit lifters many times, and just knowing her is a great honor and privileged. Recently, I found out that her mom has been very sick and have had her and the family in my thoughts and prayers. When I was at M’s one day, I picked up a few items that I think (and hope) she will like and be able to use those items. I wanted to include a special homemade card/tag to make the little package special.

I sewed a piece of wallpaper cut to the size of a tag and then did the same with a piece of durable white cardstock. I proceeded to sew the edges together. I found the perfect friendship quote on an online quote site and it reads:

The glory of friendship is not the outstretched hand, nor the kindly smile, nor the joy of companionship; it is the spiritual inspiration that comes to one when he discovers that someone else believes in him and is willing to trust him. –Ralph Waldo Emerson

I used a Fiskars “Icing on the cake” paper border to add character to the quote. I sewed a vintage piece of lace to the bottom and then glued the quote onto the front of the card/tag. I used 4 brass brads to make sure everything would stay in place. A green feather was included for a more “girly” look. I used a piece of real tan leather for the tie. I found a really pretty prima flower and added that to the bottom of the tag with pewter looking brad. I truly enjoyed making this for her as she is near and dear to my heart.

Little Girl's Pink Ballerina Dress Card and Scrapbooking Embellishment

       One day I was needing a ballerina embellishment to add some depth to a scrapbook page I was making. I searched endlessly through my Cricut Cartridge Collection, and nothing extraordinary appeared. So, I started to trace a pattern onto some cardboard and made my own dress. I used a heavy duty pink cardstock for the base of the dress and some frosted vellum to create a mesh sort of skirt. I distressed the edges of the little dress. When I made the small little V belt, I added a small flower and on others these little beady things that us crafters call: Skittles. I further enhanced it with a little strand of connected pearls that are normally found down the Wedding Aisle at stores. I used glue dots to piece everything together. I found the perfect quote and printed it out and used foam to  lift the quote from the cardstock that it was on. My page was complete and I truly enjoyed making the first one so I ended up making another 20 all hand cut and home-made. This would surely brighten any girls page, or to add to a card.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Altered Black and White Polymer Clay Cameo Napkin Holders

Altered Black and White Cameo Napkin Holders

             I always think that it is a waste to throw out all of those empty napkin rolls. One day, a thought came to me and I decided to make 4 Oriental Good Luck Napkin Holders. I cut the roll into 4 sections. I created a mold with some Oriental symbolism and used polymer clay to make me 4 cameos. While they baked, I took out the handy glue gun and attached a beautiful Black and white scroll-like pattern and glued it into place. When the cameos were finally done and cooled down, I used the glue gun to place a cameo in the center where the beginning and the ending of the ribbon met to sort of disguise that line. They are fun to use when you have guests,Chinese New Years, or to simply dress up your table for “looks.”

Patriotic "A Child's Year" Plaque/Picture of Childhood Remembered

Patriotic “A Child’s Year” Plaque/Picture of Childhood Remembered

    A few months ago, I bought a Cricut Cartridge called: A Child’s Year, which had tons of vintage looking silhouettes of children. This is one of my favorite cartridges besides the Disney carts. One day, I was feeling very patriotic and made 2 plaques/pictures to honor those who fight for our freedom. The wooden frame is around 4”x4”, with the center section open for pictures or quotes etc.

     I dug out my cricut machine and started to cut out a 3 inch silhouette of a child driving a small toy car with a flag behind the boy. Second, I glued white cardstock that was cut to size and shape of the frame. Then I used another Cricut Cartridge to cut out the white stars, and the blue stripes. I cut the red part of the plaque by hand. I used craft foam on each of the stars so they would pop. I distressed all the edges of the frame, flag and the boy in the car. In the middle of the “My Hero” frame (normally where a picture would go). I used some blue cardstock and attached it to the back of the frame and used some letters so that it would read: My Hero. I took a black ribbon so that one could hang it on the wall.

     The Second “Americana” Plaque/picture is almost the same, minus the “My Hero” wording. I cut a dark brick red piece of cardstock to size and shape and glued it onto the wooden frame. I then added a mat to frame in the middle. I used some tiny brads to add a vintage feel and then added the words USA. I used a blue fabric with a small piece of cotton batting for dimension. I distressed the frame, car, and mat. The blue cotton was made in the USA so it would complete the red, white, and blue color theme. I attached a metal picture backing to the top of the frame so that it can be hung on the wall.

    These little pieces of art make wonderful party decorations, an Americana themed house, for the military collector, gifts for friends and family, collectors of Americana and many others. These pieces of art will show everyone that you are a patriotic citizen.

Vintage Inspired Shabby Chic Clipboard

One day when the weather was dismal, I decided to alter an ugly clipboard to give it new life. I took your basic wooden clipboard and sanded it down a little so that the modge podge glue would stick better when I added the background cardstock which is from the DCWV Paper Line. I tore half of a 12” x12 “piece of paper towards me to distress it along the tear line. Then I glued it to the middle for depth found my box of all sorts of vintage labels pics etc and used them on the front of the board to give it an altered shabby chic look. Then I used one of my favorite products which are the Cat’s Eye chalk to distress the edges on the board and for all the vintage labels. After I used a glue stick to hold the vintage labels, pics, and quotes I then put on a heavy layer of sealer to preserve the paper so that it could last a long time. These make great secretary day, boss day, or for everyday uses.

Minature Polymer Clay Cave Man Ugly Doll and Figurine

Miniature Cave Man Ugly Doll and Figurine

   By now, those who have read my blog know that I truly make one of kind items and use all sorts of products, supplies, and much more. I taught myself how to do all sorts of crafts, never doing the same idea or craft twice. “The Caveman “was an interesting doll to make. He is another doll that would be considered an “Ugly Doll.”

   I used Sculpey white clay to create the entire body, minus the doll hair which was made from doll hair. I used a distressing ink to add age and interest. Then, I baked “The Caveman” in my toaster oven for about 2 hours. He then sat so the clay could somewhat dry more. I used a glue gun to add the red doll hair so that it would not fall off, painted his eyes blue and his lips red. I took a strong glaze and brushed it on him with even strokes. The Caveman is 2 ½ inches in size.

A little background about the caveman:

   The Caveman’s real name is Huhn. He was born 500 hundred years before Christ. He had the talent of great storytelling which kept him on a high honor as a Chief or Alpha in his tribe. He could sit for hours staring at something that caught his eye, and he would eventfully try to possess the object in question. He was always on the front line of any hunting expedition. He was born 500 years BC, and lived until 620 BC, making his age over 120 years old. He had a mate  when he was younger named Shesan and she died while giving birth to Huhn’s child. She was his true love and it broke his heart to lose her. A major part of him died when Shesan died, and he vowed never to marry again. He was not a typical caveman for he showed a kindness, and love towards others. When he passed away, the entire tribe they were no longer sure what to do. Their leader was dead. Most of the tribe decided to split up and join or create their own tribes. “The Caveman” is what kept that tribe together in harmony. He was deeply missed.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

All Kinds of Handmade One-of-a-Kind All Occasion Cards (Birthday, Anniversary,New Baby, Wedding, get-well, Cancer, & others

                         Before I started doing scrapbooking, I enjoyed making cards. Sometimes it is just plain hard to find that "perfect" card for that "special person and occasion." My solution was to make a card to fit the occasion and the reciever of the card. I used all sorts of techniques for the cards and used a variety of glues, foam, distressed, added charms, well, let's just say if the card making technique is out there, then I most likely have made it. The following cards are just a small sampling of what sort of cards I have made. The card with the tree is a magnet and there is a quote underneath.There are a few that I have made for those who have had cancer and the people I have given them to have told me that it was such a blessing a spirit lifter for them. I have a rubber stamp that says: If you knew how long it took me to make this card, you'd never throw it out. So, here we go:

Adorable Edible Candy Train Party Favors

Adorable Red Edible Candy Train Party Favors
One day I was pondering over party favors for a Boy's Birthday. He loved trains and was only 3 years old. I decided to make an Edible Candy Train. I used the following candy: 2 York Peppermint Patties with red foil, 2 red lifesaver candies, a 5 piece pack of Big Red chewing gum, and 2 red Hershey's Krackel Chocolate Candy Bars. Since these are meant to be consumed I decided against a glue gun and used "Glue Dots." Glue Dots are an amazing invention and you can do so much with it. Many professional gift basket makers use this in their gift baskets to secure items in the basket or other container. These were such a hit at the party that I plan on doing several for an upcoming event in August called "The Steam Threshers" Reunion. During the event, several old tools, farm equipment, some of the first school buses that have coal ovens to keep the kids warm and was horse drawn. They have all sorts of fun and games. If you ever get a chance to come to this event and the Barnesville, MN Potato Days (Held the same weekend) you are in for a weekend of fun for the entire family. Yes, I said for the entire family and not just for the person who likes antiques, collectible farm machinery, potato lover, wrestling in mashed potatoes. Next time, you are needing a quick and reasonable party gift or for bake sales, these little trains are wonderful to make and sell.

Altered Wooden Wildlife Deer Hunting Ornament

Wooden Wildlife Deer Ornament

              I come from a family of very dedicated and determined hunters, who take their “game” seriously. A few rules of the family are: No wedding during hunting season, Plan on hunting almost every day. I never know what to buy or make for someone that is so passionate about their hobby, sport, collections and others. A few years ago, I started a trend or tradition of making a Christmas ornament for each of my brothers, mom, in-laws and a few friends. I try to cater to their likes.
            Well, I went to Michaels and found these unpainted wooden shapes: oval, square, angel, heart, snowman, and many others. I picked up a dozen of the unpainted oval pieces since they were 6 for $1.00. When I got home, I asked my husband to drill a tiny hole near the top of each piece so that I could run string or ribbon through. I then took out my stamps that had wildlife on it from StampinUp! and my ink. I layered the various colors of ink and images onto the wood, and created a subtle and peaceful looking ornament. On the back, I attached a piece of cream cardstock and signed my name and added a few leaves. I used a water based sealer to seal the ink. These were such a hit with the family that I continue to add to their collection each year and they never know what creature or design they will get.

Altered Tiny Pieces of Art Pink/Blue, and Pink/Black Inchie Swap Results

Inchie Swap Results

         I was recently in a swap on the message board where we needed to make 20- 1 inch x 1 inch and alter them as we saw fit. I ended up making over 320 inchies in Pink/Black, Pink/Brown, Blue/Black, and Blue/Brown. The ones that I have posted here are from the Pink/Black and Pink/Brown Swap. The other colors are going to be here in a few weeks. A few people dropped out of the swap and we needed “Angels” to make up for the ones that would be missing, and I volunteered. The hostess AudraBailey was fantastic and very organized. She did a remarkable job. I have met some great people on the message board through these swaps. Well they arrived yesterday, and everyone did such a fantastic job. Here is the result:

Altered Art "The Girl With A Pearl Earring Classic Cigar Box,Handbag & Purse

The Girl with A Pearl Earring Classic Cigar Box Handbag and Purse

    One day while shopping at Michaels Craft store, I walked down the unpainted wood aisle and stumbled into uncharted territory and a new love was born. There were wooden boxes, letters, shapes, benches, jewelry boxes, trunks, wooden handbags and much more. There were all sorts of handles, and mirrors to adhere to the inside of the wooden box. I bought a package of a 3”x3” mirrors. I used a silver acrylic paint both inside and outside. I printed some classic pictures from Dover Art software: The Girl with a Pearl Earring, and one of a classic lady resting.I added a few words around the outside of the wooden Purse box and it reads: Do You See What I feel? Peace, Hope, Love, Pain, Sorrow, Fear. I added a blue ribbon on the edges of either side with a glue gun.

 I used some Cat’s Eye Chalk ink to distress the edges. Then, I took out the Modge Podge and attached the pictures to either side of the box. I added a pearl stone so that it would make the earring pop. I wanted a unique handle so I bent 2 silver spoons and hot glued them to the bamboo handle.

 For extra durability I wrapped a blue ribbon around the spoons. In the inside of the box, I glued the small mirror I bought and glued the same blue trim around the mirror.

I have used it only a few times but I truly enjoy just looking at it. These box purses can be made to fit the person who is making it or for the person you plan on giving it to. All it takes is a little creativity to create a masterpiece.

Audrey Hepburn Altered Cigar Box Handbag and Purse

Audrey Hepburn Cigar Box Handbag and Purse

           Finding new uses for old things not only helps the environment, but it can breathe new life into items you once cherished. A few years ago, I went to an estate sale and bought 7 cigar boxes for 25 cents each. I used a modge podge glue to adhere a collage of Audrey Hepburn on one side. The side of the cigar box is shown with the brand name as is the other side of the Cigar box. I needed to attach a lock so that the box would be able to close and also a handle. I used a high gauge wire and used clear glass beads to make a handle. It was tricky getting it to bend the way I wanted but after an hour the handle was perfect. These are great accessories for your wardrobe, decorative storage, and even a lunch box. With a little paper, glue, pictures, wire, beads and a lock, you can make a plain box into a work of art, something to be proud of.

Shabby Chic Altered Prima Rose Notebook

Shabby Chic Altered Rose Notebook

      I use notebooks all of the time, but was never able to find one that was truly unique. I took a yellow lined paper pad about 5 inches by 7 inches that I found at Wal-Mart. I then took a glue gun to attach a yellow cardstock to the front and partially in the back. I used an Anna Griffin paper and cut it to size. I used a Fiskars “Icing on the Cake” border punch around the edges. I took a paper flower called a prima and a brad to make the notebook special. Then I used double sided tape to adhere the floral paper to the yellow cardstock. These make great last minute gifts to give to that person who has everything. I have a special notebook that matches each of my purses so I can coordinate my accessories even if I don’t match my clothing.

Ugly Peasant Doll Svelda Borat

Meet Svelda Borat

         Svelda Borat is an odd doll, and considered an “Ugly Doll.” I used beads for her eyes and for her teeth. I then painted her teeth silver. Her nose is not quite centered but fits her body and personality. I used tan polymer clay. She walks with a limp. I added red curly doll hair to her head and glued it in place. I found some flannel fabric and hand stitched patches on it. She has a plaid scarf tied around her hair.       
        Svelda was born in Romania, and orphaned at a young age when her parents saw her for the first time. She was born with one leg longer than the other which causes her to walk with a limp. Svelda is 103 years old. She keeps to herself. Once, she was called a witch by many of the townsfolk. Her odd look and fire red hair contributed to the image. She lives in a small cottage house in the middle of the woods. When Svelda was a child she was taught how to sew, and to make fabric. She never has any visitors and therefore she decides to stay in her home as often as she can. Her hands give her trouble and her eyesight is failing, so she is no longer able to sew or make fabric. She patches her clothes with whatever she haves on hand. Although, she is considered an Ugly doll, she is her own person and quite the character.

The Dancing Monk

The Dancing Monk

         The Dancing Monk is inspired by the 17th century monk. He was born and raised in China in a Buddhist temple. He just turned 78 years old, and has lived a long, pious life. He is highly respected amongst his people. He has deep wisdom that has been passed down to him. He will get a name soon, but for now he is “The Dancing Monk.” I used silk fabric for his shirt and for the pants. When creating the face, I added lines in the forehead and made his face appear kind. He stands less than 5 inches. I used tan Sculpey polymer clay for his skin color. I baked him at 275 degrees for about 1 ½ hours, and then let him sit for a few hours. I used a real gold chain as his belt and attached some charms to it which were a keys and a roller. His shoes are made out of felted wool and strapped to his feet. I made a gold and white holder that has some papyrus paper that contains a verse that is written in Chinese. I have it neatly tucked under his arm and hand. He is truly one of a kind. I was recently asked to make another one just like this but he turned out a little different. I think that each character needs his own personality and so he is special.

Some facts regarding Polymer Clay:

Polymer Clay is one of my most favorite art medium and I enjoy making all sorts of things with it. When you are working with the clay and getting ready to bake, it is best to use a separate pan and a toaster oven. There are some harmful chemicals that come out when baking and that are why you would want to get a separate oven, and pans. Be careful when taking out your items and wash your hands immediately after you are done.

Shabby Chic Red and White Toile Storage Box

Red and White Toile Altered Storage Box

       One of my favorite design patterns is toile which normally consists of Victorian era images. I figured that since I was redoing my studio in the colors I wanted the d├ęcor all to match. I went to a fabric store and picked up a yard of white and red pastoral pattern toile. I then took some Modge Podge Decoupaging glue to adhere the fabric to the box. To smooth out any ripples, I used a wooden roller. In the inside of the box, I used a glue gun to make sure the edges would stay in place.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Easter Egg Count Contest on the Olive Juice Studio website

Great Easter Egg Contest
 Take your time and enter this great contest. There are some great prizes. All you have to do is the following:

Guess the Number of Eggs in the Basket!!!

 This is what you will Win...

1 Martha Stewart - "Double Loop" Punch Around the Page Set (Use this set to create one continuous die-cut border - perfect for cards and layouts!)

1 K&Company Accordian Book Kit

1 Colorbok Chipboard Book

4 yds. 5/8" Pink Ribbon with birds and hearts printed on it

3 yds. 3/8" ribbon in blue/yellow/brown print - both perfect for your springtime projects!

The original plan was to wait until we got 100 followers before we started our uber cool giveaways and contests...We don't feel like waiting any longer and want to get this show started! We are extremely giddy with excitement to announce our first ever blog contest! By the way....we aren't just another blog who gives out "blog candy".....we're going to kick that up a notch too because we're giving out "olive juice cocktails"...

(In case you didn't know, olive juice goes nicely with a delicious blogtini ...We serve our cocktails with a shot of inspiration, going heavy on the creative juice!) So here's the contest....

See the photo of the Easter basket with the goodies? Guess how many eggs are in the basket and you could be the winner! (If more than one person guesses correctly, I will put those names in a bowl and draw one name who will be announced the winner. If no one guesses the correct number of eggs I will use the next closest number. If more than one person does not guess the correct number but selected the next closest number, I will put those names in a bowl to select the winner.) I sure hope that made sense... And just so you know, we have no idea how many eggs are in the basket either and won't know until we count them the the day of the drawing!

Contest Rules:

1.You need to FOLLOW/subscribe to our blog. If you are already subscribed to our blog - that's fabulous! Just follow the remaining rules! To FOLLOW our blog scroll down 3/4 of the way and it is located on the righthand side. Look for the button that says "FOLLOW" and click on it. It will direct you on what to do from there! Please email us if you get stuck so we can "try" to help you out!

2. You need to leave a comment here so I know who is participating in the contest.

3. Send us an email at with your name and the number of eggs you think are in the basket.

4. If you have a blog, you need to post the contest details linking back to us on your blog somewhere for others to see. (If you do not have a blog you can still participate. Just send us an email stating that you don't have a blog but would like to be a part of the contest and then follow the other steps above.)

5. You need to leave a comment under the "Tell Us What You Think" blog entry below ABOVE this post!

That's all you have to do! It's so easy peasy anyone can enter!

BUT there's EVEN MORE..!

IF, we reach 100 subscribers, I will throw in more goodies for every 15 followers after that! (These prizes will be announced as the number of subscribers increases!)

The Contest starts today and ends on Friday, April 2nd at 11:59PM. The winner will be announced on Saturday, April 3rd sometime during cocktail hours between 4:00-7:00 PM (We are located in Illinois so it will be based on CST)

Saturday, March 20, 2010

I was a Winner at a Local Scrapbook Store!!!

Well, found out a few days ago that I had won the grand prize at my LSS (Local Scrapbook store) which originally I thought it was for $500 worth of scrapbooking/cardmaking/crafting supplies.But found out today that the manager forgot to give me my other huge bag of items and that instead of $500 it was $1000. I am so excited to use these items. I plan on using many for a memorial album I am working on. I forgot to take pictures of the first large bag of items, but the pics you are seeing is from the second bag.