Medieval Texture {Photo Fridays}


Would you believe me if I said my texture’s about to get medieval on ya? Well it did! Read on to find out how…

In 2010, when I started my photography certification program at UCSD, my first assignment was to photograph “home”. I decided to include some photos of my church, where I volunteer quite a bit. I absolutely love this photo, for so many reasons:


I love that it was a tricky angle to get this shot. I love that the feather is pointing to the cross. I love the cream, blue and patina colors. I love the wispy clouds in the blue sky. I love the details in the St. Gregory the Great statue. Love, love, love!

While in Paris earlier this month, we visited Notre Dame. You know, that tiny little church, that’s just a few years old? No really, that amazingly large and beautifully designed French gothic, 850 year old Roman Catholic cathedral, near the Seine. There’s so much age, history and richness in those walls.


What have those walls…

  • heard?
  • witnessed?
  • saved?
  • protected?
  • been scarred by?

While inside Notre Dame, I was inspired to photograph the texture of the walls, with the vision to add the texture to the St. Greg photo in particular.


I wasn’t sure what result I’d get, but I have to say: I am so in love with the way it come out!


How did I do that, you ask? I opened up both files in Photoshop (I use CS6). I dragged the texture image into the St. Greg image, creating a new layer. Selecting the wall/texture layer in the “Layers” dialog box, I changed the opacity to 69%, and changed the blending mode on the layer from “Normal” to “Overlay” – just left of the “Opacity” dropdown menu. That’s it! I saved the file and I’m all done!

Screen Shot 2013-03-26 at 11.23.15 PM

So it takes all of 5 steps to Add Texture to your Photo:

1. Open both images in Photoshop
2. Drag texture shot into image you’re adding the texture to
3. Select the texture layer and change opacity to meet your needs (I went with 69%; use the slider)
4. Change blending mode from “Normal” to “Overlay” (or any other mode – play around – there are some really cool ones!)
5. Save as new file!

And that’s how my texture got all medieval on ya! As my girls say: easy-peasy, lemon-squeezy! If you haven’t added texture to any of your photos, you’ve gotta give it a try! Just be sure to save your file under a new name.

Thanks for stopping by and have a joyful, creative, blessing filled day! Make it a very good, Good Friday!
Live creatively!

Doctored Note Cards and Journal {Feeling Crafty}


For many years, pretty stationary was my addiction. I always had the greatest intentions to write notes to friends and family. But even with such great intentions, I have to admit, not very many were actually ever sent out. As such, I have a huge box of unused note cards, journals and notepads.

So what’s a crafty girl to do? Reimagine them of course!

2012-09-05_1964I had these pretty square, pink cards beckoning me to do something with them. So I pulled out my “Big Ticket” stamp set from Hero Arts. Using VersaMark waterstamp, and two embossing powders (black and pink), I created the ticket on plain white cardstock. I used black embossing powder on the outer portion of the ticket and pink for the sentiment in the middle. Using my go-to blending tool and Tim Holtz Distress Ink in Shabby Shutters, I added a little color to the ticket as well. I popped on some foam squares and set it right in the middle of the white border on the card.

It still needed a little more oomph, so I used a scalloped heart punch on the bottom right corner, added some doodling, little heart stamp, and hand-written sentiment. Voila, custom card created!


Here’s a super cute journal I had on hand and decided to doctor it up for a birthday present for a dear friend. The journal was from Michael’s dollar bins, and although it had a cute screen printed flower detail, I wanted to customize the journal for an upcoming trip my friend was planning.


Out came my Tim Holtz Visual Artistry “French Market” stamp set. I love the blue print of the Eiffel Tower. Using a vintagy/newspaper print paper scrap I had left over from the crafts we made for my sister’s wedding, I stamped the design, again using VersaMark, and this time I used a copper embossing powder. I used a fun little corner punch to give it a little more oomph. Looking at it now, I should’ve distressed the edges to make those pop, but that’s what’s so great about this craft, right? Learning, learning, learning!


I used my Fiskars scalloped punches in Large and X-Large to create the little button on the bottom right. And using typewriter font stamps to create my title, I layered the pieces and added a little bling to finish the project.

What kind of “doctoring” have you done to take pre-made note cards all your own? I’d love to see!

Thanks for stopping by and have a joyful, creative, blessing filled day!
Live creatively!
/c // standard Ranger craft spinner altered to hold foam pads that go on blending tools

Altered Spinner {Feeling Crafty}


I can’t remember the last project I worked on where I didn’t use ink and a blending tool?! A few months back I found the Ranger Inkssentials Craft Spinner on sale and decided to buy it. I’ve loved having it easily handy on my desk and not stumbling through my drawers to grab the right blending tool. Don’t throw me a pity party or anything, but sometimes it’s a drag to find the right foam pad  – they get buried deep in the drawer holding all my inks. See the photo right behind this post? Those are my inks, plus about 10 more I’ve bought since this photo – yeah, I know, I have an ink addiction, but it’s mostly Tim Holtz and I have absolutely zero tattoos : )

When I’m working on a project, I usually use 3 to 5 colors. Sometimes I’m going into a different color family than the foams I have on the ink blending tools. I was looking at the spinner and realized Ranger should’ve added a basket up top to hold the extra pads. And that’s how I came up with the idea to add the pail…


My girls have a ton of these pails (from Target $1 bins) that we’ve used for birthday party goodie bags, art supplies, toys, etc. I grabbed an extra one that had just gone into the donate bin and decided I’d try to make it work. A hammer, a nail and screw driver was all it took! I hammered the nail into the bottom of the pail, then used a screwdriver shaft to make the opening a bit wider. I used the back of the screwdriver to smooth out the edges and added washi tape on both sides to cover the edges. It took all of about 5 minutes to grab the supplies and make the hole. Now I have the different colored foam pads right on top of the blending tools. Love it!

What crafting alterations have you made in order to streamline your creative process? Please share! I love hearing how other people come up with solutions and always find them inspiring!

Thanks for stopping by and have a joyful, creative, blessing filled day!
Live creatively!

Valentine’s Cards {Feeling Crafty}


I do this every holiday. I have big dreams of making tons of items – decor, cards, tags – and time just completely sneaks away from me. Luckily, this time, I got my cards in the mail, just in time!

My girls have been sick and I’ve been feeling a tad rundown, so we all just stayed home today. No school. No gym. No errands. Jammies all day – woohoo!

In the MOMs (Ministry of Mother’s) group I belong to at church, we had a wonderful marriage therapist come talk to our group last week, and her topic was building forts (or a safe haven) for our marriages. This made me realize that my girls had never built a fort! Sure, we’ve built plenty of clubhouses, even a pretty fancy one in our backyard, but never an old fashioned fort with chairs and a sheet. So we started our morning with a yummy breakfast, then got busy building a fort. I knew they’d love it, but I had no idea that meant I’d actually have the morning to think! Yes, just think about my day, rather than trying to keep up with the chaos.

With my thinking time, I figured I needed to get started on Valentine’s cards for the grands and sibs. I immediately went to check out Kristina Werner videos – she always inspires me! I took a little of this, a little of that and came up with the card above.

Besides patterned cardstock, solid cardstock and adhesives, here’s what I used to make the card:


I started with an 8-1/2″ x 11″ piece of patterned cardstock, cutting it in half so I had two pieces of 8-1/2″ x 5-1/2″ pieces, which I then scored into 4-1/4″ x 5-1/2″ cards.

I punched two large hearts on pink cardstock, chalked the edges in white and added dash lines (faux stitching) in red marker.

Using VersaMark and Glitz embossing powder, I embossed the brocade heart on red cardstock; then punched using the x-large heart punch, and chalked the edges in white again. Here’s a close up:


Using VersaMark and Snow (white) embossing powder, I embossed the Happy Valentine’s Day sentiment on red cardstock. I trimmed the paper to under half inch and cut out a little notch on the left side end.

Using the blending tool, I inked the edges of the entire card in picked raspberry.

Next, I glued down the pink hearts and sentiment, then added foam squares to pop the embossed heart.

I usually leave the insides of my cards blank and just hand write my message. But this time I wanted to do something different. I found the “Love” and “you” screens in my stash, and decided I’d use more of the Picked Raspberry ink. But after I did a couple, I realized I wanted to create a circle for the inking to stay within. This picture will help:


And I got that look by cutting a 3-1/2 circle and using the negative to create a border. This photo will help explain:


Clearly, holding the stencils in place with my hands meant I got a little inky today, but what’s not to love? I can’t wait to use this technique again… soon!

Thank goodness for forts! The girls kept busy and I ended up making six of these cards for our loved ones. Have I mentioned I love the way they came out?!?!


What Valentine’s crafts kept you busy? Cards? Decor? Gifts? I’d love to hear and even see, so share in the comments below!

Thanks for stopping by and have a joyful, creative, blessing filled day!
Happy crafting!