Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Anything But Cute Mixed Media Challenge

It's time for our very first challenge at Anything But Cute! The lovely and uber-talented Branka is our hostess, and  she has chosen the theme Vintage Garden.  She would like you to create a mixed media project that includes something that reminds you of a garden--flowers, birds, butterflies, dragonflies, bees, lattice, vines or maybe a fence.  Whatever garden vision you have, we want to see it!  Just be sure it's in a vintage style! 


Just the thought of a garden brings to mind flowers, vines, trellises and fences for me. After taking part in our town's Spring Garden Tour, I was inspired to make this 3 dimensional Vintage Garden for Branka's theme.  I saw old overgrown lattice rooms, garden benches, potting sheds, bird cages, rose gardens, lots of crumbling old gingerbread, brick walls with ivy growing over them, fountains and plenty of cobblestones. Of course there was plenty more to see, but these were just some of the things that stuck in my head. I've tried to include these features in my bird house garden shed. Please click on any photo to zoom in on the details.


I'm a recycler and repurposer, and love to use "junk/trash"and common household items in new ways.  Some of the trash I've used on this birdhouse is foam and acetate waste packaging, grapevine wreath bits,  paint chips, cereal boxes, and old greeting cards.


I started with a paper mache' birdhouse I picked up on clearance a couple of years ago. 

                                                           

 After giving it a coat of gesso, I started "building my shed" and "planting" my garden".  I made a copper roof using copper colored card stock, embossed it with Tim Holtz Stripes Texture Fade and wiped on Distress paints with my fingers (Peeled Paint, Black Soot, and Salty Ocean).  I then wiped on some metallic rubs in various colors.  I used the same colors on the eaves over top DecoArt copper fabric paint. My Tim Holtz influence here is in my modified Painted Industrial technique from his latest volume  of Compendium of Curiosities.


Here's a shot from the top in my strawberry patch.


The "cobble stone walk" started with a Kleenex tissue (well a few of them).  First, I peeled them apart so they were one ply.  Then I used texture paste through a Prima stencil.  After it dried, I used Gel Matte Medium to adhere it to the base of the birdhouse.  This is a great way to use stencils on an uneven or curved surface. After the adhered stenciled tissue dried completely, I painted it with Weathered Wood, Black Soot, and Gathered Twigs Distress Paints to give it a weathered stone appearance.


We'll start our walk through my garden at the front window. Here you'll see some architectural elements like Victorian Gingerbread and old brick.


To give some texture to this side of the house, I stuck on some masking tape and bits of cheese cloth. The bricks are made from paper clay  and a handmade brick stencil and cut to fit around the window.  The roses, leaves and ivy were all made from paper clay and molds. I used Distress paints, inks, stains, sprays and markers to paint everything. I also added some random stamping using script from Tim Holtz'' Urban Grunge set and the image over the window is Cloud Nine. Some more Tim Holtz influence here using his Paint Marbling  and Layering Stencil: Texture Paste techniques from Compendium of Curiosities Vol 3, modified to use on a surface other than a tag.



The window is made from two dies:  Tim Holtz Window and Window Box and Sizzix Curly Gate. I trimmed the window to fit the space, and I gave it and the trim pieces a coat of gesso, followed by Picket Fence Crackle Paint. Once dry, I stamped it with an image from Tim Holtz Attic Treasures in Archival ink and dripped some Distress ink in the cracks and wiped off the excess.

The "wallpaper" is from My Mind's Eye.  I've added some ink and paint and a stamp from Tim Holtz' Nature's Elements, as well as a fussy cut cat from my book "Parlor Cats". Every vintage garden needs a cat peeking out the window at the butterflies! They are cut with Butterfly Frenzy die (Tim Holtz) and colored with Perfect Pearl powders and Distress paint.


Next we walk through the potting area, where wisteria (bits cut from a large floral stem) drips down from the eaves from vines (little bits I cut off my wreath), and dogwoods hang in the background (unidentified stamp from a yard sale).  I used a home made stencil for the brickwork, laying down crackle texture paste.  Some random stamping done with the script stamp complete the background.

                                               

 Some of the details include regular texture paste swiped through a TCW stencil for the grass, and a bluebell stamp from Art Impressions.  You might be able to see I gave the bricks and the bluebells some shadowing. The birdcage is from Paper Studio, painted with Distress paints and popped off the wall.  The bench is actually 5 layers of a Spellbinders die cut-- 2 for the backrest and 5 for the rest to give it some dimension.  I used Picket Fence and Brushed Pewter Crackle paints and Distress paint and stain to highlight the cracks and give a shadow.







I made little flowers using Tim's Tattered Flower Garland die and paint chips and a few tiny pearls pulled off a necklace.  The hollyhocks were a find at an estate sale last week--I got a big box of crafting goodies! More Perfect Pearl butterflies added!


The pots--probably my favorite part about this entire garden started out as wood miniatures. I gave them a coat of gesso, added Rusty Hinge Distress paint and some sand for texture.  Once dry, I dabbed on Gathered Twigs, Wild Honey, Peeled Paint, Black Soot, and Antique Linen Distress paints. 

Here is a shot I took of the process from start to finish.


And here is a close up of them on my completed project. 


Let's walk around to the lathe house...This is a little whimsical, so pardon my over-sized flowers! These were also cut with the same Tim Holtz die and paint chips.  Gesso gives them a vintage, worn look.

                                                



 I made my lattice from a recycled greeting card.  It's purple, teal and black on the reverse side!  I threw everything at this puppy--crackle paint, crackle texture paste, gobs of gesso, all to give it that really time and weather-worn appearance.  Distress paint and stain finish it off. You can see a little cheese cloth peeking out around the edges and between the "boards" of the lattice on the finished project..  I added a layer under there just for fun.

                                         

 The bird and nest is Paper Studio, altered by moi, as is the bicycle (thanks for the inspiration Samra!).  The picket fence is from Hobby Lobby, and it started out brown.  Lots of gesso, Picket Fence (ha, imagine that!) Crackle paint, and stain dripped in the cracks give it a shabby look.



 My vines are some of the metal vines I've used on many of my projects-purchased at a yard sale years ago.  Love this versatile stuff-it can be painted any color-I used Distress paints this time.



More holly hocks and butterflies! The basket was a plain straw-colored one I picked up at a yard sale and have been hoarding for a special project.  I cut it in half and painted it to add to my wall.  I cut a bird from the cover of Tim Holtz' Wallflower paper stash, since I messed up the first bird cut from the actual paper. There are little handmade roses in the basket.


I bet you heard the trickle of water coming from the fountain just around the corner! 


 This is my favorite view of the garden, and I had a lot of fun designing it around the metal lion head doorknocker from Paper Studio.  I panicked for days, because I couldn't get the horseshoe out of his mouth.  I gave it to my husband, and he pulled it right out!  My hero!


The bricks forming the arch are made from paper clay, and I used texture paste as mortar between them.  The back of the fountain was made by applying a thin layer of texture paste through a Prima stencil on a piece of cardstock. The "concrete" blocks and the pool were made from the dense foam inserts that come in Texture Fades.  Everything was painted with Distress paints, and shadows were added using watered down Gathered Twigs paint.




 I added some more paper clay and handmade roses, vines, ivy, and Flower Soft.  I created the pool of water from Cellophane Glitter and microbeads. The stream of water falling from the lion's mouth was made by gluing microbeads and Raindrops on Roses to a strip of thin plastic waste packaging (the wrap from Distress inks). A couple more butterflies complete the scene.




I wanted to make a base for my birdhouse vintage garden, and found this piece in my stash, which I painted with distress paints, textured with some textured Kleenex, more paint, Picket Fence Crackle paint, and Distress stains dribbled in the cracks, and wiped off. I  forgot to take the before picture of the entire piece, but this one shows it's true colors on the top which I didn't paint. This is another Tim Holtz influence: Tim likes to use old vintage things in his work, and his displays, and many of them he finds out "junkin" (just like me, his soul-sister).



 I guess I could have left it at the first paint layer (Distress Marbling), but NOOOO!  That would have been too easy!


I was the lucky winner of a huge stack of Heartfelt Creations stamp sets from the generous  Kathy Clement,  and I wanted to use at least one of  them on my project.  Although the one I really intended to use just wouldn't fit, I made this tag (Tim Holtz Tiny Tabs and Tags die) and  to hang on my house using one of the sentiments from the sets.  I used Tim Holtz' technique he presented for his April tag. I used water spritzed water color paper, Distress markers and Distress marker spritzer for the background, after embossing the sentiment in clay embossing powder. Of course, I had to distress the edges and add a little spritz and flick, too, to give it a real vintage feel.  I even used vintage string to tie it on the base.


                         


Here' another quick walk around my vintage garden...







I hope you enjoyed my post as much as I enjoyed creating this little shed for you!  Thank you for stopping in today, and for all your wonderful comments!  I read and appreciate each and every one of them!  Hugs and Blessings!

Sara Emily

I would like to enter this in the following inspiring challenges:

A Vintage Journey "Spring Colors" My Tim Holtz influence is in bold text. I am also a huge fan of his Distress products, stamps, dies,  and Texture Fades and have used MANY of them here!
Creatalicious Challenges #74 "Embossing Wet or Dry" I used both dry (roof) and wet (tag) embossing.

72 comments:

  1. What a creative shed you had made, very well done!

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    1. Thank you for this generous comment!

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  2. WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOW!!!!
    OK, I managed to pick my jaw up off the floor....Holly cow!!! This is by far my favorite piece that you created!!! OMG, I can't even begin with praise, cause my head is still spinning from all that beauty!!! I think you get the idea that I am simply blown away by your project!!! BRAAAAAAAVOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!

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    1. THANK Y O U, Samra! I'm SOOOOO happy you like it! Big hugs!

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  3. HOLY BEEPITY BEEP BEEP!!!!!!! I've been scrolling up and down for sooooo long, I'm pretty sure my coffee is cold now!! I can barely get my brain to focus on one thing here!! You made an arch out of handmade bricks...what!!!!! Look at that water fountain, dang girl, it looks so real!! That basket with the little birdie and flowers...whoot whoot!! I really cannot say enough things to express how freaking blown away I am by this entire thing...from top to bottom, every single detail is out of this world incredible!! You are truly an artist and I am so proud to call you teamie and friend! big hugs :)

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    1. Wow! Now my head is about to explode; it is so big! What a humongous compliment coming from the Queen of Craft! So happy you like it! what FUN, FUN, FUN I had making it! Now your Halloween House can live next to my bird house garden shed! Great job kicking us off, today, Captain! Big hugs, my friend!

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  4. My nice long comment disappeared :-(( You must have spent weeks on this, not just hours. The window side and the fountain side are my favorites. Love the cat in the window, the whole window "scene". Fountain and water are brilliant. Love the " copper" roof, and the stand it is all on. Oh, and so appreciate all the repurposing and upcycling. Fantabuliciousness!!!

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    1. Oh, I hate when that happens! I lose my comments all the time, and to make up for it, blogger duplicates many others! I love that you love my cat in the window. I did see a cat in the window on our Garden Tour, but the ugliest thing I've ever seen--a hairless cat!!! Oh yeah! I love to re-purpose! Thank you for stopping by my blog and leaving this wonderful comment! And that word!

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  5. OMG, I don't think I am able to think cleraly since I am totaly blown away by this out of this world piece of art! This is not just a scene, this is a whole little world you've created, my lovely Sara! I thought that your brilliant fountain is one of the best details I've ever seen but now I am not sure that I can express how much I adore your window, your amazing bicycle, your fantastic bench and all the miniatures so perfectly arranged, not to mention your perfect textures and that cute little basket with beautiful flowers! I am proud to be your teamie, my mega talented friend!
    Have a wonderful day!
    Big hugs :)
    Branka xxx

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    1. Branka, I don't think I've thought clearly for 3 weeks now! This has taken every one of my creative brain cells, but I had a BLAST making it! The basket was one of those oh, let's put this here things, so no brain cells lost on that! And it is I who is proud to be YOUR teamie! I look at all our projects for this post, and it is clear our hearts went into each and every one. We all deserve a great big crafty hug! Thank you for leaving me this wonderful comment; it made my day! Big hugs, my friend!

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  6. I am not sure where to start with my praise for this fantastic project because there is so much to see and everything is so wonderful. I love all the garden bits and pieces you created with clay but I am blown away with the "water" coming from the lion wall fountain and the copper roof. This is superb and must have taken eons to complete.
    Hugs!
    Cec

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    1. Cec,
      Thank you so much for this wonderful compliment! I'm happy you appreciate my water...that was the trickiest part for me ( I went through about 20 scenarios in my head, but I'm happy this one worked out); other than getting that dang horseshoe out of the lion's mouth! Time goes by fast when you're having fun, and I had SO MUCH fun making this! So did it take a lot of time? Who's counting? Big hugs!

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  7. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    1. Somehow my message went thru twice... so sorry. j

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    2. Hi, Joi, that happens to me all the time! No need to apologize! Hugs!

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  8. Sara - I'm speechless again.... so... here's my thoughts:

    In the Secret Land of Vintage Gardens
    The hidden part of the tale
    Is that each gifted, earth loving gardener
    Has a cottage under flowering vale.

    The cottages are covered with enchantment
    Filled with colors and shimmers and shapes
    Of millions of beautiful flowers and vines
    over mounds of grassy green capes.

    In the center of the Vintage Gardens
    Lies the matriarch of the fold
    Sara’s Closet is a brilliant spectacle
    Of landscaping new to old.

    Crafty gardeners from around the world
    View her fountains, paths and flowers.
    Spending their precious leisure time
    Relaxing in her gardens for hours.

    Invigorated, refreshed and ready again
    After every inch of the gardens are viewed
    Crafters head back to their flowering work
    With creative inspiration renewed. Hugs! j.

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    1. I cannot express the gratitude for this lovely poem you have written especially for my Vintage Garden. I am so deeply touched, and amazed by your writing talent! I'm going to print it off, and keep it with my garden shed. How in the world did you come up with this amazing piece of poetry???? I hope crafty gardeners will spend their precious leisure time relaxing in my garden! And then I hope they go back to creating something amazing for our challenge! This is wonderful, my dear, and a real treasure! Big hugs!

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  9. How do you do it??? This is holy freakin cow ;) amazing!! You go all out, your 3d pieces are just stunning. I can only imagine how long this took and all the effort and coordinating equipped, but wow was it worth it! Thank you for your lovely comment on my blog hun.
    Hugs
    Georgie xx

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    1. Georgie, you always put this huge smile on my face! Why do you think I was late with your birthday card? I had so much stuff going on with this project, it was difficult to find room in my Closet to work on much else! Oh, but I had so much FUN making this! I think I might have gotten off to a faster start had I had a Georgie texture class first! thank you for your sweet comment, my friend! Hugs!

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    2. Can't believe I'm coming back here to thank to my team mate for entering this at Frilly and Funkie - seems very weird lol But thank you hun for entering this over at Frilly and Funkie xx

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  10. O-M-G!!!!! And gosh golly darn dearie Sara! I have been reading and looking at this mega-luscious post all day! Where to start!?! I can't even begin to imagine the crwative thought process, and time you used to create this masterpiece! This really is AMAZEBALLS! And ubberly gorgeous! You have used so many wonderful techniques and supplies in a fantabulous way! You just amazed the tarnation out of me. Wonderfully stupendous make my teamie! Hugz to you muffin! I must go back and re-read this post to keep my brain in check. ~Niki

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    1. Oops! What happened here? Boy, do I ever need a CAT scan. I replied below somehow!

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  11. There is sooooooooooooooo much to see here, Sara. How long did to take to make this stunner! A winner no doubt...I really am not able to pick a favorite side now...your attention to detail is amazing. I love the bench though..and the window side with all the dressing.Thanks for the lovely inspiration. Big hugs.

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    1. Rupa, it is such a pleasure to see you've visited, and to read your lovely comment! There is a lot going on here, isn't there?! Not sure if that's good or bad! I do have to confess, it is you who inspires me, with those wonderful 3 D creations of yours! I'm happy you like my bench, and the window...I like the window side, too. Anytime I'm in a garden, I'm happy! Big hugs to you!

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  12. Oh, my Gosh, Niki! For some reason your comment reminded me to link these up to the challenges! I nearly missed 3 deadlines! Thank YOU; you saved me! Talk about needing to keep your brain in check! I need to find mine! I'm happy I could amaze the tarnation out of you! I apologize for the long, agonizing post. My shed did take some time, but it was time having FUN! It was absolutely the most fun I've ever had making anything--that's hard to say, because anything that's 3D for me is Blast time! I'm so happy you are my teamie, Punkin! Thanks for all your support!

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  13. OMG! There you are again, Sara Emily!! How FUN is this! Spectacularly darling, this rusticky delicious birdhouse! I can't even tell you which detail I adore the most, but if I HAD to choose, it would be the lion head fountain, with flower water! FABULOUS!! Thank you for bringing this creation to my April Showers Brings May Flowers challenge at Our Creative Corner! Gosh, it just started and you've been by twice now!! Thank You!! XOXO-Shari

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    1. Shari, I'm SOOO happy you like my bird house garden shed! I will have to say you came to mind as I was making it, because I know you have a love for flowers. And it makes me smile to know you like the fountain side best...it is my favorite part, too! I wish I had a fountain like this in my garden! Most of the time our fountain doesn't work! And dare I say it, the water in it isn't so sparkly and blue! Ha! Ha! Thank you for this wonderful comment--it really made my day to know you were here to visit! Hugs!

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  14. Forgot to say, I love, love the little flower pots! You made them look so realistic!

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    1. Oh, thank you, Marci! That makes me so happy! I love them, too! I wonder if I could actually get any plants to grow in them! Ha! Ha!

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  15. Wow, your creativity is astounding. Love it!!! Thanks for sharing with us at Aud Sentiment this fortnight and hope to see you again soon.
    Hugs,
    Sandy

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    1. Thank you very much, Sandy! I'm happy you liked it!

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  16. Wow Sara, fantastic post. Thoroughly enjoyed reading it and seeing all your techniques used to get the stunning results and fabulous attention to detail. Adore this birdhouse, so well thought out for every little space. Thanks so much for joining in the challenge at AVJ and good luck.
    Julie x

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    1. Thank you for this lovely compliment, Julie! I was thrilled to see you had made a bird house, as well! Hugs!

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  17. My mouth is hanging open in wonder and delight! I've been looking at this post for a full 15 minutes. I just can't get over all the incredible details. You thought of everything. The textures are amazing. The lattice wall, the sweet crackled bench, the fabulous copper roof...me oh my! But that fountain...holy moley....that left me speechless. I can't get over the amount of work and inspiration and whimsy and oh...just crafty goodness you crammed into this gorgeous project. Now I have to visit....I have to see this in real life! You are a wonder!

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    1. Kathy, My door is always open! My garden shed and I would be delighted to have you! I'm glad you popped in here real quick to see the way I was able to use your stamps...I know I'm going to get so much use out of them!

      Kathy, I cannot tell you just how much FUN I had making my little shed, so I'm happy you appreciate all the details, too!

      Thank you for becoming my latest follower! Big hugs, my friend!

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  18. Jaw-droppingly amazing Sara!!! The amount of work you have packed into this is quite astounding with every little detail thought of. Thank goodness you've included plenty of photos so we can all get to marvel at each and every one of them. Thank you for sharing this at Frilly and Funkie and at A Vintage Journey. Jenny x

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    1. Thank you, Jenny! Now you've gone and swelled up my head with your kind words! I'm happy you enjoyed all the photos! Hugs!

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  19. Sara,
    What can I say that everyone else has not already said?!!!This is totally out of this world freakin amazing!!From the kitty in the window-to the fountain and bricks and everything in between!!
    One of my most favorite parts,(besides your humor) is the recycling of found and throwaways-go green girlfriend!! Awesomeness all the way!
    If it were up to me, you win win every prize for creating this splendid garden cottage! xo

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    1. ps..thank you for your visit!

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    2. Thank you, Jackie! Now we need to put you on all the nominating committees! I haven't won a challenge in a while! And it's so nice to hear you like my humor and my love of using junk in my pieces! I should start my own challenge blog and call it "Junk" or "Trash to Treasure". Ha! Ha! Not a chance!

      The pleasure of visiting your blog was all mine! And thank you for the Google Plus comment, too! Hugs!

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  20. Wow! What a beautiful, amazing labor of creative love! Your creations is gorgeous. Thank you for sharing with us at Altered Eclectics Challenge.

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    1. Thank you, Vickie for this lovely compliment! I really love knowing you like it!

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  21. Holy smokes Sara, that is incredible! What a wonderful world you have created, all of the amazing details and I adore your wee kitty peeking out of the window. A true work of art and heart, well done girl!

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    1. Wow! thank you SOOOO much, Deb! It is such a compliment coming from you...you have been on fire with your work lately! Way to go! It's kind of like the "storm after the calm", since I know you said your mojo was taking a hike there for a while. But look at you go! I have been so enjoying your work! Woo Hoo! Big crafty hugs!

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  22. Wow! It is a lot of work... Your project is gorgeous! I love all of beutifull details!
    I have no words to explain how you make me feel inspired...
    Hugs
    Irena

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    1. Well, Irena, you have just paid me one of the highest compliments...that I make you feel inspired!!! That's what it's all about! I had such fun making this...it never felt like work. And I'm so happy you enjoyed it all! Hugs!

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  23. A wonderful project!
    Thank you soo much for taking part in our "Embossing” challenge over at Creatalicious & good luck in the draw.
    Hope to see you again in our next challenge as well…

    Hugs,
    Melanie
    (DT Penny's Paper Crafty Challenges)
    (DT-Coordinator Creatalicious Challenges)
    (DT Come and Get It)

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    1. Thank you for this great compliment, Melanie!

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  24. Stunning, just stunning work, those bricks! Wow, thanks so much for joining us at Stamps and Stencils. Ruth x

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    1. Funny, I was just visiting your blog, and leaving you some love and pinning your brick canvas to MY ABSOLUTE FAVORITES, and now I have two!

      Thank you for this "make my day" compliment, Ruth!

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  25. Oh wow Sara, another amazing project, - so much detail and gorgeous textures on this beauty!!
    Thanks so much also for adding it to our challenge at A Vintage Journey, Countryview challenges and Mixed Media Monthly!

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    1. Thank you for your lovely comment, Astrid! Just had a good time making it!

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  26. Sara, you are so talented - what a magical make - I love it!!!!!
    Sandy xx

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    1. Sandy, you are very generous with your praise! I'm happy you like it!

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  27. beautiful. Thanks for playing the Mixed Media Monthly Challenge with us!

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  28. WOW this is absolutely beautiful Sara! Gorgeous details and textures, I love the bench and cute clay pots! Thanks so much for joining us at Creatalicious this month!
    Tammy x

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    1. And, Wow, back! What a lovely compliment! I'm happy you like those pots!! And the bench...Thank you for your visit and comment! Hugs!

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  29. DROP DEAD GORGEOUSLY BEAUTIFUL. I am in love with this wonderful piece of artistic pleasure. I am new to the game and inspired by my blogging friend Pamellia, now I am even more so inspired ...I think I need to get some decent crackle paint today..Amazing work of art and colour, this is a really beautiful piece of artistic pleasure. I have joined as a new follower...to learn and admire.
    {aNNie My Personal Blog}

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    1. Wow, Annie! thank you so much for making my day! My week, my month! I'm so happy you hopped on board, and I hope I don't disappoint you! I don't usually make this elaborate of projects! I will be visiting your blog, for sure! Hugs!

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  30. Oh my goodness! I love this birdhouse!! The details are amazing!! Thank you for playing along with us at The Mixed Media Monthly Challenge!!

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    1. Thank you, Karen for your lovely comment! It really seems to come from the heart, and I appreciate that!

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  31. This is beautiful! Love all of the details! Thanks for joining us at The Mixed Media Monthly Challenge!

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  32. Wow, wow, wow, wow, and OMG! This is fantastic! It is going to take me multiple visits to take in all of the amazing details and techniques! This is truly a breathtaking project!

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    1. Wow! What a wonderful compliment you have paid me here! Visit as often as you wish! Thank you for visiting today! Hugs!

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  33. Beautiful. Wonderful project. The details are amazing. Thank you for joining us at Altered Eclectics this month. Hope to see you back here again next month. Judy DT

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    1. Thank you, Judy! I really appreciate your visit and this lovely comment!

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  34. Gorgeous altered birdhouse! Thanks so much for joining us at The Mixed Media Monthly Challenge.

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  35. What an amazing altered birdhouse! I am in awe of all the details! You rock!! Thanks for joining us in this month's Mixed Media Monthly Challenge.
    http://www.lynnkopas.blogspot.com

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    1. Wow! I'm so happy you liked my birdhouse, Lynn! Thank you for making my day with this comment!

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Thank you for leaving your comments...they mean so much to me.