Blog: Grove Street

Henrietta Maria Art Journal Page from Riikka Kovasin – Guest Post

Excited to share another gorgeous Guest Post from Creative JumpStart 2021 teacher Riikka Kovasin! Today she shares a stunning art journal page using my Grove Street and Fairview Fan foam stamps.

Enjoy Riikka’s artistry!


Hi there! It’s Riikka here with my third and final guest project! I hope you have enjoyed them so far. They are all quite different, but that’s just to show that Nathalie’s stamps go so well to different projects and styles!

As my final piece I made an art journal page. I really love how versatile the “Grove Street” stamps are. In the card they reminded me of a sun with the rays of light, in the earrings they made me think about Nordic patterns and Marimekko and here I turned them into a crown and neck ruffle! All with the same stamp set!

I recorded a little video this time, too:

https://youtu.be/_RYaQx9HaMA

I started the page by making some patterned paper of my own. The stamps make it easy as you can combine them in various ways. I created one bigger pattern and another smaller one. The bigger one then became the background for the page whereas the smaller one ended up being a piece for the dress. I used the Grove Street foam stamps and the Fairview Fan foam stamps.

The character I made for the journal has a head from an actual painting. The painting is by Anthony van Dyck and it’s of Queen Henrietta Maria, done in the 17thcentury, 1638. I printed the head a couple of times as I wasn’t sure about the size but went with the middle size one.

The part that’s not visible in the video is the collaging or adhering. After I have the background painted and the elements embossed and printed, I collaged them all together using an acrylic gel or a glaze of sorts called Izink ICE. This way I could make the background older looking by using a tea-colored glaze there and make the blue dress even more vibrant using blue gel. I’ve added a link to a series I made as a Seth Apter Creative Team member about ICE to the description box of the video, so you can see more, if you wish.

Thank you for this chance, Nathalie! I hope you have enjoyed these projects and thank you for stopping by today!

All the best, Xoxo Riikka


Thank you Riikka -absolutely love how you used the foam stamps for that collar and dress! Henrietta has some serious style :)

Want to give it a try? You can find all my Foam Stamps in my Online Shop and here are some of the other supplies Riikka used:

Comments (6)

  • gbp2019

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    Riikka lovely video and gorgeous results

    Reply

  • Wendy

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    Beautiful! Love the rich palette and how much the white really pops. Nathalie’s stamps work so well, especially for the ruff! Just gorgeous. Thx for doing this guest tutorial.

    Reply

  • Sue Clarke

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    Love it! The words are an especially nice message.

    Reply

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Sunny Home Card from Riikka Kovasin – Guest Post

Happy to have another Guest Post from Creative JumpStart 2021 teacher Riikka Kovasin! Today she shares a card celebrating a new home using my Queen Anne rubber stamp and my Grove Street foam stamp.

 We are so excited to share some projects with you from Riikka. Enjoy!


Hi there again! It’s Riikka here with another project! This time I made a card. The rays in the “Grove Street” stamp made me think about a sun, so I combined that with one of the beautiful, detailed house stamps Nathalie has. This one is “Queen Anne”.

When I started, I was thinking of going with yellow tones and instead of black embossed the stamped house first with pale yellow. When I then started adding colors to it, I realized that it won’t work. The pale yellow looked odd with the stronger colors coming on top. So, I ended up using black anyway.

I recorded a little video while working with the card so you can even see my two takes with the outline color:

After getting the elements done the card was easy to put together. 

I used white on white in the background where I added a strip of embossed white cardstock as kind of an anchor. On top I then added the warm sun and then the house.

Like I write in the video, the house just couldn’t float on the card front, so I stamped some grass, too. For that I used the “Queen Anne”, too, stamping the lines multiple times on top of a strip of white cardstock. The intersecting mishmash creates an illusion of a texture stamp!

Thank you for stopping by today! Wishing you a sunny day!

Xoxo Riikka


Thank you Riikka – love watching you work in the video to figure out the best solution!

Want to give it a try? You can find all my Foam Stamps and Rubber Stamps here in my Online Shop and here are some of the other supplies Riikka used:

Comments (4)

  • Robin Seiz

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    This is such a lovely card. Thanks for sharing!

    Reply

  • Sue Clarke

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    Cheery, bright colors and such a wonderful use of the stamp!

    Reply

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Shrink Plastic Earrings from Riikka Kovasin – Guest Post

Today we have a very special Guest Post from one of our Creative JumpStart 2021 teachers: Riikka Kovasin! She is bringing us 3 different shrink film earring ideas using my Grove Street and Fairview Fan foam stamp sets. Before we get into it though, let’s hear a bit about Riikka:

“Heippa! My name is Riikka Kovasin and I am a mixed media crafter from Finland. I live in Helsinki with my darling husband and our two sweet daughters. Creating is my passion and a way of self-care. Besides family and crafts, my weeks are filled with a full-time job.

I have been doing all sorts of crafts my whole life. I really got into papercrafts after I found scrapbooking when my older daughter was about 6 months old – that’s over 10 years ago. Since then my style has evolved to more and more mixed media direction and nowadays, I tend to go dimensional and do more altered and mixed media pieces than regular layouts.

I absolutely adore getting my hands into paints and mediums! To me the process of creating is equally as important as the finished project.”

We are so excited to share some projects with you from Riikka, and this is the first of a few that will be coming in the next few weeks so check back for more :)


Hi there! It’s Riikka Kovasin here today to share a guest project with you. I actually made a couple projects, so you’ll be seeing me a few times in the course of next weeks.

As my first go I made some jewelry pieces. I really love the patterns of the foam stamps and love how satisfying it is to stamp with them, but on their own they are maybe a touch too big to be used as jewelry. As a pendant, maybe, but as I’m more into earrings the images seemed a bit too big. But no worries, I can always use shrink plastic! That way I’m getting the pattern and the feel of the foam stamp, but the finished piece is half the size! So satisfying!

For these three pairs of earrings, I used both white and black shrink plastic. I used acrylic paint to stamp the images and then colored them using alcohol and paint markers. The first pair is made using both the Grove Street and Fairview Fan foam stamp set. The circular piece has an earring stud at the back. 

The dangly parts are made using both positive and negative version of the fan stamp set. To make the center fan a little bit longer than the other two I added a red glass bead between the circle and the fan.

The second pair has even more glass beads as there’s just the fans that are stamped. Again, there’s a stud piece at the back.

The last, but not least, is maybe my favorite. I made that using the Grove Street stamp, just alternated the color I was using on top of black shrink plastic. The first one is done with inky blue metallic acrylic paint, the second one pale blue metallic acrylic and the one nearest to the ear is then white acrylic paint. 

These dangle all the way as I added a stud earring with a little ring on top.

I’m not a jewelry maker but these were so easy to do even I managed them! Now the only trouble is to decide which pair to use!

Stay safe everyone! Xoxo Riikka


Thank you Riikka! Wow who is excited to try foam stamps with shrink film now? I love all three of these possibilities and I love how they could work for a variety of different fashion styles.

Want to give it a try? You can find all my Foam Stamps here in my Online Shop and here are some of the other supplies Riikka used:

Comments (8)

  • Robin Seiz

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    Great lesson. Thanks so much… Who even knew there was black shrink plastic?!!!! I really love the effect you get with that! I’m going to add it to the very long list of things I must try.

    Reply

    • Riikka Kovasin

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      Thank you Robin! In my craft store they had this selection of four different kinds of shrink plastic sheets in a pack – black, white, glossy transparent and mat transparent :) That was perfect as I didn’t have to choose which color to pick :D

      Reply

  • Kath

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    Awesome post. You read mind. I’ve been wanting to make earrings with shrink plastic for the past few weeks but was struggling with drawing a decent image and coloring so that it wasn’t smudged or looked good. Your stamps and the type of paint solved my roadblocks! Beautiful, beautiful earrings that I think I can actually make. One question, did you sand the plastic first?

    Kath

    Reply

    • Riikka Kovasin

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      Hi Kath! I didn’t sand the plastic first so the earrings are bound to get some wear and tear. Sanding helps the paint to grab the surface better. Or then just add more paint when it seems to wear off :D

      Reply

      • Kath

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        Thanks for that input. I just seem to smudge the colors. However, I noticed when I sanded, you could see the marks, which I do not like. I can’t remember what people use to glaze the plastics.
        I’ll have to check it out. I just love how the paint you used worked with the stamp and it didn’t look like it smudged at all.

        The stamps you used are sold out. I’m gonna wait for restock. That’s how much I liked your earrings!

        Thanks for inspiring me!

        Kath

        Reply

        • Riikka Kovasin

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          I’m so happy to hear that you liked these so much Kath!.

          As you are stamping on top of a sleek surface with a slippery paint, it may slip and smudge. If you look closely to the other of the white stamped circles (with gesso), it’s a bit thicker than the other. A slight slip or turn caused that.

          My tips would be to use a heavy body style paint, more gel-like, use just a little of it, and to use light pressure when you lay down the stamp. Another way is to actually put the stamp to the table, pattern side up with the paint added and carefully place the shrink plastic on top.

          Hopefully this helps when the stamps have been restocked and you get to make your jewelry pieces!

          Reply

  • Anne Lawver

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    Love this idea! Rikka…you are always so clever and original, combined with a dose of practical. Thank you both for this “bonus”! It was a nice surprise.

    Reply

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Inspiration from my Creative Squad

Our friend and Creative Squad member Judi Kauffman shared some inspiring extras with us this month: an upcycled calendar collage and some beautiful envelopes.

Last year Judi created a calendar for the year ahead that we shared with you here in this post.

She used my Grove Street, Groovy and Gnarly foam stamps to create this page.

And then Judi totally surprised us this month with a reimagining of the calendar. She saved her stenciled calendar pages from 2020 and for most of the months she turned them into bookmarks and card fronts. But for this one she decided to cut the whole piece into 1” squares and reassemble it into a mosaic. She said it’s her way of giving visual form to this horrible year when everything felt like it had crumbled into tiny pieces by making it into something interesting and cohesive. It’s going to become the first calendar page for 2021! Turning over a new page, as it were.

Judi also created a fantastic wall hanging from another calendar page redo.

She writes, “I made mosaics out of another of the stenciled calendar pages, adding some dimensional bird, tree, and mini buttons for embellishments.”

What a fantastic idea for those old calendars.

Judi also shared with us some envelopes she created using my Mini Motifs rubber stamp set. She writes, “The method: My go-to “Stamp & Drag” where there’s the look of motion.” Love the look and the softer lines.

Envelopes definitely deserve just as much love as the cards that go inside them and we think these are beautiful! 

Are you sending snail mail these days? Follow Judi’s lead and try stamping some of your envelopes too.

Here are some of the supplies Judi used:

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Happy Holidays – Maura Hibbitts

Hello from my Creative Squad and a post today from Maura Hibbitts. Maura is sharing with us a super cute ornament and gift tag idea using my Grove Street stencil and my Large and Small Circle Jumble rubber stamps. This month’s theme is: Happy Holidays – It is a time of year where we are celebrating and coming together and enjoying some merriment. Create something holiday related (whatever holiday you may be celebrating) and enjoy the season!


Wishing you all a very merry holiday season! Here in the U.S. it’s a really short run between Thanksgiving and Christmas this year, with the usual hustle and bustle of meeting up with friends and family, baking extra goodies, and looking for the perfect gifts. I’ve been busy already working on cards and small items for friends, so our theme for this month is perfect to get a bit more completed. I decided to work in traditional green and red, and make some tree ornaments and tags.

I’m using one design, and repeating it in several sizes, with the Grove Street stencil and Small and Large rubber stamps.

I started with a mix of the green paint on my gelli plate, then added a bit of gold, stamped onto the plate with the large stamp, and transferred the image to heavy watercolor paper.

I knew I wanted to mix the colors with the sizes, so next up on the gelli plate is a mix of red and gold. I used the small stamp with the red paint, and stamped these images on the watercolor paper also. Note – be sure to clean the acrylic paint off your stamps right away.

The Grove Street stencil is the largest image, and I laid the stencil down on the red paint on the gelli plate and pressed the paper down onto it. Then I lifted the stencil and pressed it onto another paper, so I would have both a negative and a positive print.

Once all the paint is completely dry, it’s time to cut them out. I just do it with scissors, but if you had a punch in the correct size that would work well.

I got the idea in my head that I could make a 3D ornament, so I started by gluing two of the stenciled circles together. Next, on two green and small red circles, I cut a slit to the center, then formed it into a cone and stapled it. I made sure the little red one fit onto the green circle, and glued the cap on. I added a layer of glue to the bottom of the green circle and attached it to the stenciled circle. I had to apply pressure and hold in place for awhile to get the glue to hold. I repeated the process on the other side, then decided it needed a bit of glitter, so added a bit more glue and glittered it up.

I made two more ornaments, a flat one, and another 3D one in which I cut slits into both circles to the center and slid them together. On each of these, I glued a double layer together and added glitter to the flat one. I had a lot of circles remaining, so turned these into gift tags. I punched holes in the tags and ornaments and attached some bakers twine. It’s easy to add words on the acrylic paint with a carbon ink pen.

I like how the ornaments came out looking unique, while using the same materials. These are ready to hang on the tree.

I love adding a bit of homemade to the holidays! I always hope when someone receives a handmade gift or card, they feel that extra bit of love that went into it. Wishing you and yours a joyous holiday season and blessings for the new year! -Maura


Thank you Maura – love how you created some 3D ornaments and those tags are such a great idea for giving gifts with a personal touch.

Want to give Maura’s project a try? You can find all my Stencils and Rubber Stamps in my Online Shop and here are some of the other supplies Maura 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 or tag me #natkalbach how you used my stencils and stamps – I would love to share your projects in my next  “n*Spiration From Around the Globe“.

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Inspiration from Around the Globe – August 2018

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 up is a beautiful wall hanging from one of our former Creative Squad members Gwen Lafleur, from the US. She is using my Manhattan stencil for the blue background pattern on this funky design!

Next is Barbaree King also from the US with a cool mixed media postcard using my Grove Street foam stamp on the left in pink.

From the UK we have a pop of color from Colleen Melody, using some stamps from my Marks stamp set in red here.

From the US we have a neat mixed media index card from Cathy B who has created a nifty wedding scene using my Mailbox, US Flag, and Main Station stamps, all from the fun Stroll Through the Hood 2 set :)

And finally we have some pages from Jade Sutton in the US who is using my Manhattan foam stamps to create a bold background to unify her spread.


If you’re working on something fun with my stamps or stencils, be sure to tag me and share! I’d love to see! Here are some of the supplies used in this post:



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Endless Summer – Judi Kauffman

Today we have a very special Creative Squad post from Judi Kauffman, an honorary Creative Squad member and dear friend! Judi will be joining us from time to time with some awesome projects of her own, working with our monthly themes. (You can learn more about Judi from our Nice to Meet You blog post featuring her creative story and artwork.) This time Judi brings us two projects, using my Amsterdam stencil and my Grove Street foam stamps, inspired by our theme: Endless Summer – The days are long, the sun is shining, the air is soft… it must be summer! Let’s take a stroll down memory lane and save a summertime memory forever.


This month’s Creative Squad challenge theme – Endless Summer – conjures up long days at the beach, vacations in exotic places, away from work and the usual routine. In other words: Good times! For me, it’s the opposite. Endless Summer – yuck! I can’t think of anything worse than summer lasting an instant longer than it already does. Spring is lovely, I adore fall and can’t wait for winter. I’d be happy to skip summer altogether. It’s too hot, too humid. If I’m promised a lobster roll or fried clams, I’m willing to venture onto the sand, but only if I can leave the beach before nine in the morning or start the visit at sunset. And only if the seafood is followed by ice cream…

My take on the theme is about keeping summer at bay: A FAN! And about staying indoors to make a big batch of cards. Now that’s my idea of a good time.

Instructions: If you have a lot of experience with stencils and stamps, scroll through the photos and head straight to the supply list. If you’re a beginner,I’m providing complete instructions. (A lot to read, but worth it, I hope…)

Trace an existing fan (import stores offer many options), draw your own original fan shape, or find a template online. Choose a stencil (I chose Nat’s Amsterdam stencil) and two or more foam stamps (I’m using Nat’s Grove Street set) that your eye tells you would make a good combination. A fan handle and some flat wooden sticks are also needed. A stir stick from the paint store and thin stir sticks from a coffee shop are good alternatives.

Cut a window opening in newsprint or other lightweight paper, place it over the stencil, and move it around until the position of the stencil looks good within the fan shape. Position the foam stamps over the stencil to get a sense of the scale and proportions. This is the planning stage where it’s easy to change your mind and customize the project. And it lets you in on the design process – showing exactly how I created my fan.

  

Use the template to trace and cut a fan shape from light color heavyweight watercolor paper, cardstock, mat board or chipboard. (Use mixed media shears that cut heavy materials or a craft knife and self-healing cutting mat.) Cut a curved mask from newsprint to cover the bottom area of the fan. Tape the mask in place. Use a wide brush and random strokes to paint the surface with red paint. When dry, use a wide brush and very little paint to stroke on purple paint. Remove the mask. Let the paint dry. While you’re at it, brush excess paint onto pieces of tan cardstock and newsprint scraps. Set them aside.

Cut a clean mask to again cover the bottom area of the fan. Stencil the allover pattern using a stencil brush and gold paint. (Hold the brush upright, use very little paint as you go – work slowly and take care to keep the pattern as pristine as possible – there are lots of thin lines in the Amsterdam stencil and if you use too much paint it will seep under the stencil.)

Remove the mask. Cut another mask, this time to cover the stenciled area of the fan. Use a craft sponge to apply ink to shade the edges of the almond shape at the bottom of the fan. Use very little ink and a light touch so the effect is softly shaded.

If you like the look of the fan with no further embellishment, this is the last step. Cut pieces from the flat sticks and glue them to the almond shape; glue the top portion of the handle to the back of the fan and you’re ready to face the summer heat! (Or survive a hot flash in mid-winter…)

If you like more embellishment, keep going as follows:

Alter a 5” x 12” piece of Shimmer Sheetz with gold metallic alcohol ink. Shown: Ruby Gemstone SS dabbed with an ink applicator tool and Ranger Metallic Mixatives. Back the SS with double-sided adhesive sheet.

Using the same purple paint that was previously used, stamp the altered SS with the two foam stamps, alternating positive and negative images to fill the space (four complete and four partial circles. Shimmer Sheetz is a nonporous surface. Lift the stamp straight up to avoid smudges, but don’t worry if the images are not perfect. Paint that is pulled just a bit adds dimension and interest.

While you’re at it, stamp the circles with purple and Emperor’s Gold paint onto the cardstock and newsprint scraps set aside above.

Cut out the circles and the partial circles. Also cut out one lightweight paper circle. Trim the lightweight paper circle to use as a template when cutting the Shimmer Sheetz circle that fits near the almond shape at the bottom right of the fan. Position a full circle toward the left. Then arrange and adhere all other circles as shown, trimming at the edges of the fan after they are in position.

Hold onto the scraps from the circles, returning them to the release sheet to keep the adhesive from sticking to anything on the work table – they’re going to be part of the bonus card projects coming up…

Arrange Red/Gold glitter dots peel-offs around the edges of some of the Shimmer Sheetz circles. If you like dimensional gems, add them as well. In the photo below, I ‘auditioned’ flat-backed faceted gems to show as an option, but I did not glue them in place.

Instead of gems, keep going with LOTS of glitter dots in Violet/Silver, Gold/Silver, and more of the Red/Gold. Be sure to add a tiny one to the top of each of the flat sticks! (To order the dots – The color name is listed first, the metal rim is designated second.)

BONUS PROJECT – Use the stamped cardstock and newsprint pieces, plus the leftovers from the stamped Shimmer Sheetz (partial circles as well as surrounding areas) to create a series of collage-style cards! Shown: A2 size, 4.5” x 5.5”, cardstock in red and Kraft brown.

The photo gallery that follows is for inspiration only since it would be impossible to precisely duplicate the randomly stamped cardstock and newsprint.

  

  


Thank you Judi – love your rich colors and all the different ways to use the stamps and stencil that you’ve shared with us. Just gorgeous! In addition to a fan template and some chipboard or heavy cardstock, here are some of the 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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Comments (1)

  • Jean Marmo

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    I am a big “fan” of Judi’s work. This is just spectacular! Love the many layers and finishing details! Wonderful cards! Thanks for the inspiration!

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This Must Be the Place – Jennifer Gallagher

  

Happy Tuesday from the Creative Squad! Today we have a beautiful and certainly inspirational art journal page from Jennifer Gallagher using my Grove Street ArtFoamies, my Kassel stencil, and my Adirondack Chairs and Numerals rubber stamps along with our monthly theme: This Must Be the Place –We’re all on a journey to somewhere or something. Sometimes we’re just making preparations for simple things like dinner or weekend plans. Other times we’re aiming for bigger goals, bigger places. Whether it’s a location or a state of mind, you’ll know when you get there. Where are you headed?


This month the Creative Squad is asking, “Where are you headed?” I am not exactly sure. I focus more on my state of mind and how I feel about my current state of being, rather than worrying over individual goals. Yes, I have goals I want to achieve, but I am more concerned with finding happiness in my personal life, family, and art than I am anything else. And so this month I am saying, “This must be the place.” There is a great amount of peace that comes with loving your life in this moment in time.

So, this month I want to share with you an entry in my art journal. I wanted this page to reflect the happiness I feel at this moment in my life. You will see this reflected in content and color. Starting off I chose Nat’s Kassel stencil. It’s the perfect design for a fun background. I went with an ink-blended background using my distress inks in twisted citron, carved pumpkin, wild honey, and picked raspberry. This is a very easy technique using your mini-blending tool.

Then, using seedless preserves and black soot, I blended in a dark section in the very center of the page.

I raided some of my gift wrapping supplies and pulled out a large sheet of plain white tissue paper. I applied some heavy body acrylic paint onto my Grove Street negative and positive ArtFoamies and pressed the designs onto my tissue paper.

While those were drying, I stamped Nat’s Adirondack Chairs stamp onto some watercolor paper and colored it in with my distress markers.

I chose a few of my Grove Street circles to fit across the center of my page (across the dark stripe). For my journal, I only needed three. Tear or cut the excess tissue paper from around the edges so they don’t overlap. Then using matte medium, fix the circles to your page. If you prefer not to have the dark background behind these circles you can skip that earlier step.

While the matte medium dries, stamp Nat’s Numerals stamp onto white tissue paper in a line.

Cut this strip out. Also, cut out some more of your grove street circles to apply to the top and bottom of the page. Use your matte medium once again to fix these down. Once the matte medium is dry, I used my Sakura gelly roll black pen to add doodling to the circles.

When I placed the stamped Adirondack image onto the page I really felt like the chairs needed to be separated. So I cut the stamped image in two. I added just a touch of handwritten journaling and glued down the chairs. I hope this page inspires you today. No matter your plans, or where you are headed, remember to enjoy your life now. Enjoy each moment.


Thank you Jennifer! I love the page and the idea of focusing on the happiness that we have at this moment :) Here are some of the supplies that Jennifer used:


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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