Creative Squad

Little Wonder – Marsha Valk

Hello from the Creative Squad and today we have another farewell post – this one from the super talented Marsha Valk! Marsha has been a joy to have on the squad and we will miss her but of course we will still be watching what she’s up to online :) Today Marsha brings us a lovely little trio of mixed media canvases and a how-to video. She’s using my Actually I Can and Fanfare rubber stamp sets and my Central Ave stencil. This month’s theme is: Little Wonder – We’re thinking small this month and focusing in on a tiny scale, exploring the delicate details, and creating something that is petite and precious.


“Wie wat bewaard, die heeft wat” is a saying in Dutch. It translates into: Someone who saves things has something.

On the lookout for ideas for this month’s prompt, I found a pack of four mini canvases while rummaging in my studio cabinet. I have no recollection of buying them, or why. I’m sure I thought they would come in handy one day. And they did!

Our mission this month is to use a small rubber stamp that we haven’t used before and a stencil.

There is no chance of me not having used a stamp in my n*Studio collection. However, I’ve been dying to do a project with the ladies from the Actually I Can Cling Rubber Stamp Set. And, for this special occasion, they will be joined by the Fashion Dame, an old friend from one of Nat’s earliest stamp releases.

Watch the step-by-step video to see how I combined the Millie Cling Rubber stamp with the tiniest set of stamps in n*Studio collection and one of Nat’s 4”x4” stencils.

Wishing you lots of little wonders!


Thank you Marsha! These little canvases just make us smile :) And what a great way to end your time with us here – it has been so much fun sharing your unique creative vision with our readers!

Want to try some mini canvases like Marsha has here? You can find all my Rubber Stamps and Stencils in my Online Shop and here are some of the other products she used:

Feel inspired? Working on something yourself that you’d like to share?  I love to see how you interpret our monthly themes. Email me how you used my stencils and stamps with the theme and email me an image – I would love to share your projects in my next  “n*Spiration From Around the Globe“.

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True Blue – Judi Kauffman

Today we have a special Creative Squad post from the super talented Judi Kauffman, an honorary member. You can learn more about Judi from our Nice to Meet You blog post featuring her creative story and artwork. This time Judi is presenting some delightful and definitely inspiring miniature decor items that will surely put a smile on your face! She worked with my Downtown and Central Ave stencils and this month’s theme: True Blue – Blue is the color of honesty and serenity. It’s calming and has even been shown to promote healing. It reminds us of the water and the sky. Let’s slow things down this month and bask in the tranquility of the color blue.

I received two stencils to use for this month’s Creative Squad theme: True Blue. Though I didn’t pick them, I was so happy when Downtown and Central Ave arrived! They are two of my favorites from Nathalie’s new release.

Right from the get-go Downtown looked like a rug and Central Ave evoked a mosaic table top. I’m going to stencil Downtown onto a piece of 18 count needlepoint canvas and stitch a miniature Oriental rug, but that’ll take me weeks and weeks, so meanwhile I created two stenciled Shimmer Sheetz rugs (Shimmer Sheetz is 5 x 12 so one sheet is enough for two rugs). And I stenciled some doll house furniture, sticking to a palette of blues that includes blue-gray, light teal, periwinkle, turquoise, and dark navy.

This project is fast and easy – VERY fast and easy. And it can be customized in so many ways. With the holidays fast approaching, I hope the design strategies in this tutorial will spark some fun.

The rug uses only one quarter of the 9” x 12” stencil, but it could be repeated to up-size the design. Stenciled canvas with a durable sealer would be great for a table runner or even a floor cloth.

If doll house furniture isn’t your thing, stenciled Shimmer Sheetz rugs could star on the front of a card congratulating a friend who has moved to a new home or could be sliced into strips for durable and elegant bookmarks! Instead of a 3D cabinet, stencil the front of a gate-fold card and use brads for the knobs. Instead of a table top, stencil mosaic-style chipboard Artist Trading Coins, adding collage elements. Or make flat, easy to mail holiday ornaments. (You get the idea…)


  1. For each rug – Alter the surface of a 5” x 6” piece of Shimmer Sheetz with alcohol inks in shades of blue. Allow to dry. Option A: Stencil with acrylic paint. Allow to dry. Stencil again, slightly offset, with alcohol inks in a light hue plus gold metallic. Option B: Use only alcohol inks for stenciling. For both rugs, use a craft knife, straight edge and cutting mat to trim the long sides, leaving a scant eighth-inch border. Trim the short ends, leaving three-eighths of an inch. Use sharp scissors to ‘fringe’ the short ends.

  1. For table and chairs – Base coat with a mix of French Blue Gray and Black Plum acrylic paint. Allow to dry. Using a wide, stiff almost-dry brush, add streaks of Dark Patina and French Blue Gray. Using Sea Breeze paint and a stencil brush, stencil top of table and seat on chairs with Central Ave. Stencil dot pattern from Downtown on the top of the chair back.

  1. Using the same paint and stencil brush, stencil the cabinet with portions of Downtown.

Thank you Judi! This is such a fun and unique project and it definitely brings back many happy memories from childhood, puttering around in the tiny world of the doll house :) You can find all my stencils in my Online Shop. In addition to the Dollhouse Furniture that Judi had on hand, here are some suggestions for the other supplies that Judi used:

Do you feel inspired? I’d love to see what you’re working on with my stamps and stencils. I post projects almost every month in my Inspiration From Around the Globe posts!

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  • Sue Clarke


    Judi, that is the cutest set ever and I wish that I knew someone who would appreciate it as a gift.
    I love it and wonder if I could do that with a full size end table?


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Inspiration from Around the Globe

Ready for some inspiration? Today we have some projects from around the globe. It’s always fun to see how you’re using my stamps and stencils and I am so happy to share some examples today. So let me know if you’re doing something cool with my products, and you might see yours on the next Inspiration from Around the Globe!

First is Ellen Captijn from the Netherlands and a stunning art journal spread using my Chicago stencil for that patterned background. Definitely follow the link to see the entire thing!

Debi Adams from the US found a great way to add texture with my Crackle stencil in this gorgeous mixed media piece.

Here is a bright piece from Kate Crane in the UK that uses my Marks stamps for those red and black hash marks. So fun!

Here is Barbaree King from the US with my Central Ave ArtFoamies for those circular patterns in the background – such a beautiful art journal spread!

And finally here is Linda Edkins Wyatt from the US using my Broadway and my Versailles foam stamps for an active background in this art journal page. Love all the patterns mixing together :)

I feel pretty inspired after that lineup! If you’d like to give some of these ideas a try, here are the stamps and stencils that these talented artists used:

Don’t forget to tag my when you post your projects! I’d love to include your work in my next Inspiration FromAround the Globe post!


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Colors Are My Friends – Josefine Fouarge


Hello my friends and welcome to a post from new Creative Squad member Josefine Fouarge! Josefine brings us a gorgeous art journal page that shows off how well complimentary colors play together. She also rocks my new Central Avenue Positive Negative foam stamp set and this month’s theme: Colors Are My Friends – Let’s kick off the new Creative Squad with a celebration of color! What are your favorite, go-to signature hues? Let’s go bold and bright this month and  use color to ring in a new season of inspiring projects!

Colors are my friends, definitely! My favorite one depends on my mood, but usually I tend to pick orange or green tones. Today I wanted to use my favorite color combination though, which is orange and blue. These are complimentary colors, which means they naturally work well together.

Since today I have something with flowers in my head, I wanted to use the new circle foam stamps to create a flower in my art journal. I started by spraying some color onto a few napkins and letting them dry for a few minutes.

While I was waiting for the napkins to dry, I worked on the background of my art journal page. I started with the focal point, so I stamped the outline of the Central Avenue stamp using Versamark ink and heat embossed it using bright orange embossing powder. Then I stamped the inside of the stamp also with Versamark ink and heat embossed it with a gold embossing powder.

This stamp is rather easy to align, even though it’s a round shape. You can see where the main line goes through the middle and you just need to ensure that the little squares of the negative stamp match the squares on the paper. If you look at the stamp from the side while trying to position it on the paper, you’ll know what I mean.

After heat setting the focal point, I chose a turquoise acrylic paint and mixed it with some white to make it even lighter. After adding the paint to the foam stamp using a brayer, I stamped the outline to the left and right of my focal point. Next, I stamped the inside in a row below and above the first row and switched again for the next row – and so on till the paper was full of circles.

Now I outlined the page with a black acrylic pen and scribbled following poem around it, as messy as I could:

To see the world in a grain of sand

and heaven in a wildflower,

hold infinity in the palm of your hand

and eternity in an hour.

-William Blake-

To finish up my flower, I cut several petals from my napkin and adhered them carefully around the focal point circle.

If you look closely, you’ll see that I adhered just one layer of the napkin to the page, so the embossing powder shimmers through the paper.

Here is the entire page. I just love the contrast of orange and blue and can’t get enough of it! Yummy!

Thank you Josefine for such a lovely page and for sharing the poem too! In addition to her art journal and some paper napkins and glue, Josefine used the following supplies (some are affiliate links):

Play along with us too: I love to see how you interpret our monthly themes. Email me how you used my stencils and stamps with the theme and email me an image – I would love to share your projects in my next  “n*Spiration From Around the Globe“.

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