My altered book

November 21, 2006

My altered book for the round robin swap has to leave the nest (ha, ha) on Monday, so I sat down tonight to work on it. I can’t begin to tell you how much fun I had! A few days ago I saw MemrieMare’s gorgeous doll, and decided I want my book to be on envelopes too. Then I saw Ali Edward’s fantastic Thanksgiving book – although it doesn’t say anything about envelopes, they look like envelopes! – and I knew my book would be all envelopes. The next thing that came into my mind was “rustic”. I love that word, and I love the look, so why not? I was so fascinated by using the envelopes, that I decided I *must* use them not only as my pages, but also to fill them up. So I collaged my cover page, and filled 9 envelopes (we’re 10, I don’t get any surprises from me) with tiny surprises, ephemera, basically, and held everything together with a clip. This way each participant gets a small gift – isn’t that fun?! When I get my book back, I’ll bind it using a stick – I just LOVE the look of it – well, rustic…

So here are my surprise baggies:

And my book- you can see how fat it is, because the envelopes are filled in:

The stamped letters aren’t perfect, but art isn’t about perfection, right?
I had so much fun doing this, and now I’m just crossing my fingers that it comes back home in a few months, safe and sound and full of creativity and art.

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Feeding my addiction

November 21, 2006

Someone posted a message in my favorite craft forum, saying she has to get rid of some magazines. Guess who decided she can’t resist such an offer and ended up carrying two HUGE bags-full to the fourth floor? I really didn’t imagine I would get so many, and she was so nice to drop it all off at my house. How could I resist?

Yummy!

So I spent the evening, my first quiet one at home in over a week snip-snip-snip. I also glued a yummy collage in my journal, only to read in Lisa Vollrath’s new site that she calls them “glue books” – I like that better, because I don’t want to write a journal, I only want to snip-snip-snip and then glue it all down with my UHU stick (I love the smell. Finally, a normal smelling glue!).  Pictures tomorrow, and if you want some magazines in Hebrew, let me know.

Needle felted ballerina

November 19, 2006

I haven’t had much time these last few days to update as much as I would have liked to, and Ayelet writes so nicely, so you can read all about the felting workshop we went to here.  It’s funny, but it always takes me time to fall in love with my work. During the process itself, winding the wool, pricking it, all I see is its imperfections. But I think once the piece is done, and better yet, the next day – I can really see my creation. Well, I’m in love with her, and unlike Ayelet’s ballerina, mine isn’t going anywhere! 😉

Ephemera fun

November 14, 2006

Before anything else, thanks so much for all your comments about my sugar paste cake! I was so terrified before making it, and let me tell you, it was not only pretty, but d-e-l-i-c-i-o-u-s!  I’m really happy with it, it was so much fun, I really can’t wait for my next one! Now on to some swappy fun:

I remember seeing the word “ephemera” everywhere when I had just started swapping. I wasn’t able to really understand what it is, or why people would want to swap it. A few months later, and I want to put my hands on all the ephemera I can!

I have learned to look at every piece of paper, business card and invoice, and try and find its beauty, and I know that even if it’s not beautiful to me, it’s exoticly wonderful to others, because it’s Hebrew, different, and from a faraway land. I love that. Just think of all the free paper: cancelled stamps, clothing tags, bus tickets and invoices and more!

So I participated in a few ephemera swaps, and have already signed up for ATC swaps where the challenge is to use junk mail (from your real mailbox) and labels, that sounds like so much fun!

But pictures really will do all the work, enough with those exclamation marks! 🙂

This was a local ephemera swap – I received some very boring things, but this person really chose the best – every piece in there is so beautiful, take a look:

And this the best ephemera baggy I could ever wish for. Look at all this vintage goodness – handwriting, game pieces, cards, buttons, tags:

If you ever want to trade ephemera from Israel – I’m always game! 🙂

Sugar Paste Adventures

November 7, 2006

Even before I started to enjoy crafts, I would always look at sugar paste cakes and admire their beauty. You know all those beautiful purse cakes? or am I the only one gettings those e-mails with presentations of wonderful cakes? So anyway, I’ve always wanted to take a course, but never actually did. Then I started visiting crafting forums, and people there talk about sugar paste and upload their cakes, and I finally decided to give it a try. all alone.

A very good friend is celebrating her 30th birthday tomorrow, and I know she loves sugar paste cakes and would appreciate this kind of surprise, so I set out to buy the products. Now, just so you understand the situation: I didn’t even have a rolling pin or a round baking pan until yeterday. Well, off I went to the store, bought me some expensive useless stuff and lots of other things, and came back home to use the online tutorial for my first cake. It was lots of fun! (and lots of dishes to do after the fun, ugh)

My tips for when you decide to give it a try:

1. If you read Hebrew, ask me for the tutorial, I can send you a Word file, it’s fantastic and very clear.

2. Careful with your nails – they leave marks everywhere.

3. Work FAST! I threw away about 500 grams of sugar paste, because I spoke on the phone and did other things in between. The paste doesn’t like to be left alone. It hardens and chips, and you can’t use it after that.

4. I bought a straight edge smoother polisher. Don’t. It doesn’t do anything. Use your hands to smoothen the paste onto the cake. No need for this piece of plastic.

5. When you’re done, don’t move the cake around, not even if you want to take pictures in every possible position. The paste hardens, and will chip easily. Be gentle.

I have no idea what it will taste like yet, but I think that all things considered, it looks cute! Right now it’s sitting in my friend’s house waiting for her to return and see it. I really hope it’ll be a pleasant surprise.

Here it is, happy birthday Tzurtzuriti! 🙂

Altered book round robbins

November 4, 2006

I’ve been looking at beautiful fat books and altered books and decos for a long time. I think it’s a wonderful idea to have a book circulated around many crafters, and receive a beautiful, interesting, varied and international piece of art.

So I finally decided to set up a round robin myself. The idea is for each participant to create their own book/journal, start a theme, design the cover, and send it away to the next crafter who will continue the theme with their own spread/page, and send it on. When the book is complete, it will be returned to its original owner.

It would be my first time participating in such a swap, and I’m really hoping people join. I decided to be strict about who can join, because of some sad experience with bad swappers, and I’ve also made up a rule which will hopefully eliminate the number of unsent items – that is, that even if you’ve signed up, you don’t have to complete a page. If you received a book/theme you don’t want to participate in, or can’t, you can send it on, without doing anything in it.

My blogger buddies – please see this as a personal invitation – I would love for you to join! First timers are also welcome, after all, I am one too! 🙂

Read the rules and join here.
I’ve also created a Flickr group for this purpose, so we can post all the works in progress.

Magazines

November 2, 2006

I just can’t get enough of them. I’ve always loved trashy glam magazines, but having discovered the world of crafting, I’ve switched to crafting magazines, and care less about the love life of Brad and Jolie. A few months ago I got me a 2-year subscription for Scrapbooks Etc. which I love. I can leaf through and read it for months. I never get bored with all the color and inspiration and stories in it! Pity I can’t participate in any of the “win an 8,000 dollar scrapbooking room” contests. Wouldn’t that be great?

I think magazines are a cultural thing. A “thing” we don’t have here in Israel. I understood this fully in my visit to Athens in June. Seeing all of their small kiosks overflowing with magazines, made me so jealous. They have every single magazine you can imagine, translated into Greek! Vogue, Bazaar, Cosmopolitan, Maison & Decoration, to name just a few. I was really amazed (putting my translator cap on for a sec: just think of all that fun work for translators!). In Israel the only translated magazine we have is Cosmopolitan (well, because we’re not talking about National Geographic-type magazines now, right?), and we have about 3-4 women’s magazines in Hebrew, which are both unexciting and very expensive. Besides, we don’t have the cultural element. I don’t know anyone who would admit to buying these magazines, and the only place I’ve seen people read them here are at the dentists’. I wonder why…hmmm… I want me a regular supply of glossy magazines with nice perfume scents to try, and all the paper crafting magazines I get!

Well, as of this week I have a 2-year subscription to Cloth Paper Scissors as well, and three Somerset Studio magazine back issues are making their way to my mailbox. I just can’t wait. I know you want to see my beautiful back issues, so you can peek here, here and here, and make sure you scroll down to see all the beautiful art work photos.

I tell you, the simplicity of one-click online shopping is going to kill me. Or make me completely broke. Real soon. Well, at least I’ll have lots of magazines to enjoy! 🙂

My next purchase, I can just see it coming… I just NEED this set of stamps below, by Julie Van Oosten (Stampington & Co.) – aren’t they gorgeous?