Saturday, November 13, 2021

Coloring Therapy - Pastry Shop

Hello! I want to thank everyone who commented on the new studio, either on the Blog or on Facebook. I appreciate your comments so much. The studio is working out well so far. I have had a few chances to work on some things, and I really like the new, compact space. Mostly I like having a door! {giggle} My last space was in the open loft area of the old house. I am finding a door to come in very handy! The new space is much quieter, too! 

I decided to post some coloring therapy today, since I have not made any paper craft projects yet. I did keep my coloring items with me all through the move, so I was able to finish a few projects!

As much as I enjoy coloring stamps, both physical and digital, I also I love coloring in coloring books. There are so many nice books made for grown-ups, with great paper (and some not so great paper). New books are being added to my wishlist every day! (If you have a book you would like to see me color in, leave a message and I will see if I have it in my collection!)

I colored this page over the last few months. I put HOURS of time into it, but I love the finished result.

I used Prismacolor Premier colored pencils, with a little bit of white gel pen, white paint pen, and black fine liner pen. The Prismacolor pencils worked pretty well on this paper. I was not able to put down too many layers of color, but I find that difficult to do with Prismacolor anyway. I am a bit too heavy handed and Prismacolor are super soft and waxy. 

The picture is from the book Romantic Country (The First Tale) by Eriy. I found my copy on Amazon for under $9 in 2019. It is still available, but costs a few dollars more. As of this writing, it is on special during the Amazon "3 for the price of 2" deal. Eriy has several books in this series, plus a few other books. They are all adorable. 

The size of the book is approximately 10" x 10", which is a nice size. The pictures are very detailed, but done in a very whimsical style, so you can color them with any supplies in any manner you wish. I cannot draw very well, which means coloring books allow me that sense of artistic accomplishment that goes beyond coloring a stamped image for a greeting card.

I chose this picture because I had an idea for the brick and stone, plus I wanted to try something fun on the door. Coloring books are a great way to hone your coloring skills, try new techniques, and experiment with color blends. 

I chose French Grey 90%, 50%, 30%, Kelp Green, Sandbar Brown, Deco Yellow, Black, and White for the brick/stones. The yellow is just to show where the lantern light is hitting the brick. I used the white just a bit for highlights.

The wood sections, such as the widow frame above are colored with Dark Brown, Sienna Brown, and Beige Sienna. The brush you see is for sweeping away pencil dust. Prismacolor pencils are very dusty. It is not a special brush, it is just a cheap paint brush with the handle cut off. 
I went to and fro on what color the steps and the building should be. I finally settled on making the steps gray, but in a bit different shade than the brick. I used French Grey 50%, 10%, Limepeel, and Green Ochre. I wanted the steps to be worn on the surfaces and mossy in the crevices. 

The building is colored with 50% Warm Grey, Periwinkle, Powder Blue, and White. I wanted it to look a bit worn and shabby, so I did not make super smooth blends, and I added in the gray to mimic dirt. (I know I am spelling gray two ways...but we Americans spell it "gray" where the pencil manufacturer spells it "grey.") 

I carried the brown tones to the street sign and into the shop for the shelving. The gray continues into the shop floor.

The blue door and other blue accents are just how I saw them in my mind's eye! I used Cobalt Turquoise, Peacock Blue, Light Aqua, Sky Blue Light, White, and Black. I also used a few of the green and brown pencils to add a bit of age to the wood. 

I want to go to a pasty shop with a blue door! I carried the blue over to the sign trim and the window box.

I looked at lots of pictures of stained glass and wavy leaded glass to see how I could replicate it with pencils. I am NOT a fan of stained glass, however my oldest brother makes his own stained glass windows! He is very talented. Since I like a more subdued look than most stained glass, I decided to create wavy leaded glass with a blue stained glass inset.

To create the illusion of wavy glass, I scribbled with the blue and gray pencils so that it would seem like the wavy glass from yesteryear. I used a very sharp black pencil to make the lead lines stand out better.

I confess I almost gave up before coloring the flowers and curtains. I just had no vision for them. I checked out a few color palettes from the Sarah Renae Clark Color Catalog and decided to go with red flowers and terracotta pots. The large sign over the shop door seemed to be best in the shades of the other wood. I went back in later and went over the sign lettering with a black fine line pen.
The chalkboards were fun to do, but after they were colored black, I had to freehand the lettering with a white paint pen. Not my strongest skill. I wanted the chalkboards to have a rubbed out look to them, especially the one on the sidewalk. I used Cool Grey 90% and White pencils to color the chalkboard effect, then I used a fine point white paint pen for the lettering. I tried a gel pen, but it would not go over the waxy pencil. 

The last bit to finish was the inside of the shop. All those dainty treats to color! I chose a few pencils and used them in different values for everything. 
Now that the page is finished, I will spray it with a fixative made for colored pencils. This should keep the color from rubbing off onto the facing page.

I hope you enjoyed the project. I hope to try some coloring videos and tutorials in the future. I am not sure how many of my Followers are into coloring versus paper crafting, but I hope enough of your are colorists and will enjoy more coloring related posts.

As always, leave a comment as I so enjoy reading them. If you have questions you can pop them in the comments or send me a message via the Contact Form on the right sidebar.
White paint pen: uniPosca White

Saturday, November 06, 2021

Craft Room Update - November 2021

Hello, Friends! It has been three months since my last post letting you know how the move is progressing! I am happy to say we are all moved into the new house, and we are 95% settled! (This is a long post, with a lot of photos, so grab a snack and put your feet up!)
We made the move from north coastal San Diego County to western Riverside County without much of a hitch! Things went as smoothly as you can expect with a big downsize, a big move, and a whole new climate and ecology! Everything is different here from the weather to the temperature to the bugs! (And that landscaping needs work!)Plus, we are empty nesters now! Our youngest son moved to Orange County and into his own apartment two weeks after we moved into the new house! A whole new phase of life! Oh yeah! {giggle}

I know most of you are eagerly awaiting photos (and a video) of the NEW craft room! It is pretty much set up, but I have not had the time to make a video. Honestly, I was just learning a new video editing software before taking an 18 month break! I need to relearn everything!

I am going to wait until I "live" in the room a little while before I do a video. I also have some finishing touches to add. I figured I would do a blog post with photos for now. Later I will do an in-depth video and show you how the space is working for me.

This is how the space started out! I moved from my huge loft in the old house to this spare bedroom in the new house! The room is slightly smaller than 11x13 feet. One wall is taken up by the closet and another wall by the large set of windows, which overlook the front yard. The upside is that the paint color is nice (a soft gray) and the windows let in a lot of natural light.  

But, we wanted to replace the carpet. It was stained and...well....carpet! But, due to some supply chain issues, I did not get to set up my space for almost two months because the new floors were delayed! And seriously, except for all my craft carts and bins, the photo above shows all I have for furniture from the old house! A card table, my old chair, and a floor mat! 

We ended up selling, giving away, or donating all the office furniture we had used for homeschooling, which I had repurposed it for the craft room. I really want to start over in the new space. Plus I need to find things that maximize the storage in this smaller space. Because...

While I did downsize...I still have a lot of stuff. This about one third of the boxes, stacked in the hallway! This house has 9-foot ceilings, just so you know!
Another third of the boxes is stacked in the guest room. We only have one guest room in the new house, and it WILL function as a place for guests to sleep, eventually. And...
The last third, in the form of all my paper carts and storage carts, is sitting around in the craft room! Still wrapped in plastic! Oh, and see how the shutters are CLOSED in this photo. It was about 106 degrees the day I took this photo, and the sun floods into this room making it VERY HOT! 
The first thing we did, was to attach all the 12x12 paper carts to the wall. I stacked them three high, and these are HEAVY, so my husband attached them to the wall studs so nothing will fall on my head! I have 17 of these paper carts, but only 12 would fit here due to other space considerations. Just works out in the end! 

These are about six feet high, which is perfect since I am tall. In a small room using the vertical height is the way to go! My daughter said if I get a rolling ladder I can stack the carts to the ceiling! Matt (my husband) said no! {party pooper}

This is also a good view of the NEW flooring! We went with LVP (Luxury Vinyl Plank) in a rustic grayish-brown. I love it and it seems durable, plus it is NOT shiny. Which means it hides dirt more easily! Unfortunately, my husband made me put the chair mats down, which ARE shiny and I really grumbled! I need to see if they make transparent chair mats that are not so shiny! 
I also had Matt attach the 6 feet x 6 feet cube storage shelves to the wall. These are not from Ikea as those guys were out of stock on EVERYTHING, so I got a different version. They are the same exact size as the Ikea ones, with each cube being 13x13x15 inches. They are pretty sturdy, but with all the stuff I plan to load into it, I wanted to make sure it would never tip over! Thankfully Matt is very handy and willing to help a girl out!
I decided to remove the doors from the closet to make it easier to use it for storage. I really want to do a "build out" in the closet eventually, but for now I am going to use it "as is." Removing the clothing bar and adding another shelf would be excellent, but we have enough projects going that this one can wait. It looks ridiculous, but whatever. {grin} But it sure fits a lot of my cardstock, ribbon, and other items!

The next purchase was desks, since I cannot spend my time crafting on an old, rickety card table! I ordered three library tables, because they were on sale, very very on sale! They did not have any storage or drawers, but for the price, I compromised. Plus they fit the space perfectly. Well...when the desks came, it was three different (larger) desks! They sent the desks which had a keyboard drawer and a cabinet! 
I called the company to see what had happened and was told they went out of stock on what I had ordered and they sent these desks as a replacement at no extra charge! These desks are almost 4x the cost! WHAT?! I was told I could do a return and pay for shipping if I did not like the replacement desks. I decided I liked them very well! (Sometimes supply chain issues are a blessing!) 
I had to rearrange a few things to make them fit, but now I have three desks arranged in an "L" formation. I have space for my computer station, a work station, and a die cutting station! With extra storage! 

If any of you have seen photos of how I work, or been to my former studio, or gone on a craft weekend with me, you know I need a lot of space to work! I spread out and use all the toys and once!

The other positive thing about these desks is I have a similar desk from the same company in my bedroom that I use for Bible study and such. I know the height is perfect for me. Win-win-win!
The next thing I purchased was this standing workstation! I have wanted a standing workspace for ages and decided to splurge on this one! It has three drawers that are accessible from both sides, three storage cubes that are also accessible from both sides, and six that are accessible from only one side (three per side). So much storage!

I am able to sit on either end if I have a counter height stool, or I can hide my manky trashcan under there! The top of the workstation is 60" x 30"! Most excellent! 

After I had purchased all the furniture, I started to load things into the space. I soon found out that I needed to update a few of my storage solutions to work better with the space. I did not want to replace everything, but some things I did need to change. Especially making the cube shelving work the way I wanted.

I really do need to make this smaller space work, as I only have a small linen closet for the overflow! As it is I had to put the gift wrapping paper and all the boxes of (unscrapped) photos in one side of the guest closet. Plus, my traveling, wheeled craft carts are hiding in the master closet, pretending they are suitcases! {Let's not bring that up again, okay?!) I promised Matt I would not let craft world take over the whole house! 
The space behind the door is usually wasted space. Not in my world! I added a rack for all my paints and other bottles of potions. I also added an over-the-door storage solution, which is supposed to be for shoes. As if.  
As you can see, I vastly under estimated the amount of bottles of "stuff" I have! I added the carts and some tote boxes, too! I wish I had purchased a bigger set of shelves! I plan to go through all of that and downsize, again! The over-the-door thingie holds all my adhesives. (Well, most of my adhesives!) I am calling it my wall o' adhesives. 
Here is a view from the doorway. You can see there is a lot in the room, but it is easy to move around and everything is accessible. I have to live in it for a while to see what needs to be rearranged.
I am still not 100% happy with the closet, but it works for now. I also have two little rolling carts in the space. I like that I can roll them up to my workspace. One contains all my 6x6 paper pads (don't judge) and one contains my colored pencil cases. 
I really like the cube shelves. All of my most used 12x12 paper fits there, plus all my coloring books and supplies. I also have lots of stamps and dies and other goodies tucked away! And, yes I have used the top for more storage. I am happy to be tall with long arms! {giggle}
Since I have expanded my coloring supplies and colored pencil sets, I am super happy to have space for it all at my finger tips! 

I downsized a lot of the craft supplies because I just don't craft they way I used to. I am not on any design teams (except Power Poppy Stamps) right now, and felt it was fine to get rid of a lot of stuff that is not my style or that I just never use. People, the amount of things I gave away or donated is unbelievable! 
I like that I still have a desk to work at that is NOT where my computer is also sitting. I am used to having that separation. I can roll my chair back and forth all day long. {grin} Matt also put up a shelf for my wet wipes, paper towels, etc. It is so handy! And it keeps a lot of stuff off the desk! He still needs to put up my display shelves, but I am trying not to nag. {giggle}
I love this corner! Matt hung my little embellishment drawers on the wall, which saved a lot of desk space for my ink storage and my Big Shot Plus. I also converted my button storage into little jars, which stack nicely on top of the drawer bins. I really worked hard to maximize the vertical space! With Matt's help and tools, of course!
I love having one desk that is just for computer work. I don't want to have messy craft stuff near the computer, nor do I want to have to move my projects out of the way in order to use the computer!
I also love having my wall of 12x12 paper nearby. It is my happy place! However, I am on a "no buying paper" season because, honestly...look at it! Twelve carts of 12x12 decorative paper and five more carts of cardstock! Plus 8 1/2 x 11, 8x8, and 6x6 paper. I need to get busy making stuff, not buying stuff! {then she laughed and laughed and laughed}
Here is another view of the standing workstation and the cube shelves. I am super impressed at how much I was able to fit into the space! It is really cozy and fresh. So far, I love it!
I am looking forward to getting back into my crafting and blogging groove. I am sure after the New Year, I will be back into some sort of new rhythm. With the holidays coming, the kids will be visiting, messing up my groove. {smile} 

And yes, if they are all home at once, someone will have to sleep on an air mattress in the craft room! We only have one dedicated guest room. The kids are used to having their old (private) rooms available, but here there will be sharing and bunking where there is space! Downsizing means....smaller.
We still have some home projects to complete, including adding a pool to the backyard. We are hopeful that the digging can begin in February! We love the views of "our" butte, and out in the distance we even see snow capped mountains on clear days. This is a new adventure, and getting used to the different climate has been just part of that!
My first project already! Making tags for my pencil cases. After 18 months off, I am a bit rusty! But, I will get back into it quickly, I am sure!  

Thanks for coming to visit! I really hope to get busy with some new projects, blog posts, and even some videos to share! Stop and leave a comment because I love to hear from you! 

Tuesday, August 03, 2021

On to Phase THREE of the BIG MOVE!

Well, hello...yes we are still working on THE BIG MOVE!

Phase One was de-cluttering and getting the house on the market. I worked like a team of equally yoked oxen to de-clutter all the closets and the craft studio! My husband worked all the hours of the day to do small repairs, including painting ALL FOUR bathrooms! Since we are downsizing, he has sold a lot of our extra stuff on Facebook Marketplace!Phase Two was selling the house and finding a new house. That went by so fast I have whiplash! As I said last post, we put the house on the market on a Friday and had a contract by Sunday evening! We quickly offered on a lovely home, but after about 10 days the sellers backed out! We had to go back to searching...with a ticking escrow clock!

We closed escrow on the Oceanside house and praise God we negotiated a "rent back" with the new owners! We need the extra time to close on a new home!

Which puts us at Phase Three - Buying a new home!We placed an offer on this cute, single story house in Menifee, CA and we will close escrow on it in less than a week! We are very excited to downsize our living space since we will be empty nesters in a matter of days! 

You read that correctly! Our youngest son, who has been living with us while he goes to a local university (very local with COVID), is moving out! He won't graduate until December, but he has been offered a job which will allow for him to work full time while finishing his degree! He plans to move closer to the office location which is in Santa Ana, CA. The position begins in a few weeks so the pressure is on for him to find an apartment to rent!

If you have been following this saga at know we just helped our oldest son move into his new home in June (he is in El Cajon, CA), plus our big move from Oceanside to Menifee is a huge bag of stress, then adding on the youngest son's move to Santa Ana area is just...icing on the moving cake! (I counted, and this is my 14th move since I left home for college! I am a professional now!)We are really happy to be starting this new stage of life, but it is a lot earlier in the timeline that we thought! We had decided to stay in our large home until Matt retires in about 10 years. But, the housing market exploded in our area and we were able to sell the big house at top dollar (as they say on HGTV). 

We are not totally happy to leave the coast to move inland where it is so very, very, very hot! But, this is the view we will have from the back patio! We plan to add a pool to that grassy area as soon as possible! There can never be anyone building behind us due to easements and zoning. (Well, never is a long time...)
Our new community is near a lake, which is walking distance or biking distance (or with the heat, driving distance). This is the clubhouse and pool area for the community. We will have lake access to enjoy paddle boats and catch-and-release fishing, plus a walking path goes all the way around the lake! My husband is excited about the lap pool. We still plan to add our own, small pool for private cooling times! {smile}
I have the Oceanside house mostly packed. This is most of the craft studio, stashed in one of the empty bedrooms! So, craft world is put away for now...
I confess, I did unbox some of my coloring supplies! I was going a bit bonkers with not having anything artsy to do these past weeks! I cannot wait to get settled and get my new studio all set up!

Phase Four will be moving and getting settled! (I sincerely hope there are only four phases!)  We are replacing some carpet at the new house, and maybe painting a few rooms. We are so happy we have the "rent back" at our Oceanside home which gives us a chance to do a few things at the new house before the actual move.
I will document the studio transformation for you! I currently have a 21' x 17' space with access to a large walk-in closet. Plus I have "borrowed" the closets in the empty bedrooms! I will be downsizing quite a bit!
The new studio space is a smaller room, 13' x 11' with a small, reach-in closet. We plan to replace the carpet with Luxury Vinyl Plank (LVP) which we hope will stand up to the craft mess! Plus, I am considering a build-out in the closet rather than using it as a closet. I will also have use of a smaller closet in the hall for "overflow" storage! 

I will be purchasing all new storage, shelving, and desks for the new space. I am preparing to create my dream studio, all within a modest budget, of course! And I will take you with me as we go along!

I hope by next spring we have a pool instead of a trampoline! Actually, I hope the trampoline is gone by next week! {grin}

Stay tuned for more updates! With a lot of hard work I could have the new studio up and running before Halloween! 

Edited to add: as I sat here typing up this post, a beautiful ocean breeze was coming in the windows. I cannot lie, I am going to really miss the weather and climate here on the coast! Everyone keeps asking us WHY we are moving to the (extremely hot) hinterlands! Well, in a nutshell, cost and availability of housing. Once we decided to stay in CA in order to be close to the kids, we had to make some serious compromises. The ocean breeze was one such compromise. {sad face}

Wednesday, July 07, 2021

Life Under Construction!

I am sure y'all have given up hope of ever seeing a new post! I have a million and one excuses from I was taking a break to COVID happened to we are moving! All are true and none really makes any of us feel better about the poor, neglected blog! Nor about my lack of creative pursuits over the past year!  

But...We really ARE moving! I snapped this photo of our the backyard the day we decided to put our house up for sale! I was having a bit of a moment about leaving our home after 16 years! 

We spent a few weeks sprucing up the place and put the house on the market on June 25th. We were in escrow by June 28th! Wow! That was FAST! Which means we need new NOW! 

We put an offer in on a new home last week, but the deal did not progress, unfortunately. We are going to be house hunting this weekend in hopes of finding the next perfect home! (All prayers are appreciated.)
I have been purging the studio - sorting and tossing and donating rinse repeat! We are DOWNSIZING from a large two-story home to a more manageable single story. Which means the studio is about to get a whole lot SMALLER! I culled so much stuff, but my darling husband informed me...yeah still too much! 

We are also leaving our area and moving about 1-1 1/2 hours northeast of where we live currently. Yes, folks we are leaving the ocean and heading to the (boiling hot) interior of southern CA. Finding what we want at the price we want is just not possible in our immediate area, unfortunately. We did discuss leaving California altogether, but made the choice to stay nearer to the kids. Our oldest son just purchased his first home in the San Diego area, our daughter is settled in the San Jose, CA area, and our youngest son is just about ready to fly the nest for (possibly) Santa Ana, CA.
While we are sad to leave our church and our friends and our lemon tree {smile}, we are excited to begin this empty nest season of life.  So, with the housing market what it is currently, we made the decision to move into our "retirement" home a decade or so early! We have plans to trade the lemon tree for a backyard pool. {color me very excited} 

All that gab to say that I won't be posting much more than moving details until we are actually moved and I am ready to set up the NEW studio, affectionately called Gloria's Craft Emporium, Version 2.0!

Thanks for stopping by. If you need some ideas, try scrolling around and looking at some older stuff which is still good stuff. {giggle}