Thursday, June 5, 2014

New Butterfly Easel Cards

These days I am so bogged down with wildlife that there is little time for crafting.  Little, but never no time, I need that stress buster.

I decided to make some more butterfly cards, and I used the Viva Decor Metallic paste medium for some of the embellishments.  I am in love with that paste, but apparently Michaels customers didn't catch on because they are clearing out that medium.  Big mistake, but what can I say...

For this card I used multiple techniques.  The ironworks image in the center is an emboss resist technique where I used a white embossing ink to stamp the image, added clear embossing powder and embossed the image, then added the distress inks until I liked the way it looked.  Wiped off the embossed image to bring back the white and then worked on the embellishments.  I applied the Viva Decor metallic paste on 110lb card stock, let it dry, buffed it, and then cut out the Cheery Lynn fairie butterfly and corner decorations which also needed embossing and which I believe are from Marianne.  The flowers are a punch and hand shaped.  I added the background to the butterfly, colored those with Sakura glitter pens, and also added glitter to some areas.  The flowers have color coordinated rhinestones.  The bottom is embellished with Martha Stewart's punch all over the page daisies, the sentiment is propped up and holds the back in place.  

This easel card was done a bit differently.  I decided to play around with extreme glitter acryilic paints.  I had to apply several coats to 110lb card stock and let the coats dry but also helped them along with a heat gun to speed up the process.  I then used the small Cheery Lynn Lace butterfly and another small one and cut them out.  Took several passes and some shims since the paint makes for tougher cutting.  The background is the same principle for emboss resist, but I layered the image.  It is decorated with color coordinating rhinestones.  The flowers are hand made and have centers of the same color rhinestones.  The embellishment is raised and holds up the back.  

Don't be afraid to try out new methods or mediums!  The results can be quite stunning.  

And now back to feeding my babies!  

I hope you liked my creations which are also available for purchase on my Etsy store.

As always, I welcome your comments!

Happy crafting!


Sunday, May 18, 2014

My fundraiser for my Wildlife Rehabilitation work - will anyone help?

Hi everybody!

I have designed a T-shirt on which is a fundraiser for my wildlife rehabilitation cause.  Please take a moment and take a look and PLEASE SPREAD THE WORD!!!  The fundraiser is up for a limited time only as per the website's policy and I hope to sell at least 100 shirts at this price.

Front of shirt

back of shirt
Sigi's Wild Tails Wildlife Rehabilitation Fundraiser - unisex shirt design - back

I really, really hope to read your feedback:  what do you think of my design?  I priced it very low for a multi color print in hopes to make it attainable for everybody.

Thank you for any and all help you can provide!


Friday, May 16, 2014

Three hungry baby red squirrels

My wildlife rehabilitation season is in full swing and then some.  I am currently up to 28 wildlife total, 20 baby squirrels  (grays, reds, and flyers), one incessantly begging starling nestling, and 7 adults.  Not much time for anything else right now, babies come first!

This video shows three little hungry red squirrels.  The two larger ones are siblings, the little neon feet girl arrived two nights ago. Her little feet literally flash as she runs and climbs about!   She was accepted without any quibbling and is holding her own just fine.

I have another short clip with one of the older reds playing around on a maple twig on my YouTube channel.  Enjoy!


Sunday, May 11, 2014

Marianne Craftables release

Sadly, for the time being, this will be my final release for Dutchpapercrafts.  There is one other I had created before this release, but this one is special.

Doing this release took me a while because I wanted to go out with a Bang, wanted to do something different, yet had to showcase the dies of course as well.  I hope that I've done that, I hope that I have inspired my followers and viewers to some extent.  Crafting and creating new designs is, at least for me, a bit of a mini vacation from the Here and Now, a wonderful and non-toxic (altbeit a bit addictive, sigh!) stress relief and hobby, and I will not stop creating.  Who knows what the future brings, I might be a guest designer somewhere, or Darlene asks us to create something now and then, so you might want to stick around.  I will of course, continue to publish wildlife rehabilitation stories wich started this blog in the first place.

Since I had been creating carousel cards before, Darlene thought I might have fun with the Marianne carousel die CR 1236.  I sure did, the die cuts and embosses beautifully and offers three sizes plus three different hinges.  So without further ado, lets get going here.

Time Flies
 Here I worked with the Marianne Craftables die CR1234, clock.  This die offers two clocks, a large one with Roman numerals, and a smaller one with Arabic numerals.  This is the large clock.  I created a basic twist-up card and drew and cut the wings by hand before I embossed them.

The sentiment is framed with a Sizzix sizzlet frame, and the flowers are made with the Cutie fringe # B256.

Carousel fold-up card:  Grandma's knitting
Here I used the medium carousel die CR1236.  With a strip of clear acetate I offset grandma's rocking chair (Die Versions Whispers DVW-221) a bit away from the wall.  On the left wall you see the smaller clock of CR1234.  The knitting is lying on the floor because grandma dozed off, CR1235.

Garden planter 
I like to play around with dies, and I guess my followers know that by now.  When I examined the smallest die in the carousel set my first thought was to build a baby crib. But then I changed my mind and decided to make a planter for flowers instead.

 I used my own handmade flowers for this project and a punch from Punch Bunch as well as some leaves from a Cheery Lynn border die.  The dark brown paneling is embossed with a Cuttlebug Dots folder.  I distressed the edges of the carousel die to give it a more wooden look.

4th July Fireworks
This piece shows of the large die of CR136 beautifully.  But I had all these Cutie fringes to work with and finally had an epiphany.  The result is this piece.

I pieced the strips for the flag together on white card stock, then added the blue field with the stars.  I then traced the inside of the large die and hand cut the flag pieces to fit nicely into the die cuts.  The fireworks were created with Cutie Fringe B255, B257, and B258.  Several I cut out with white card stock and then added color with Copic markers to mimic the bursts of color when fireworks explode in the night sky.

While I have no idea when this release will published, with this card I wish you all a happy Fourth of July!

Teddy's Bedroom
Okay, this one is a bit over the top, but I hope you'll stick with me.  The dies used here are the large CR1236 for the flooring fringe and the crochet hook from CR1236 Knitting.  The top fringe is a Cheery Lynn Edger, Lady Kate, B278, very pretty.  The picture on the wall is a Martha Stewart punch.  The window is yet another Cheery Lynn die, FRM142, window B.  The walls are cut with Spellbinders Grand Labels One LF161.
The rest is, well, imagination...

The teddy is the tiniest bear I have ever crocheted.  He fits in the palm of your hand.  The bed spread, pillow, and chair cushion are all crocheted and knitted by yours truly.  I then had to crochet yet another little piece in pink to stick the crochet hook from the Marianne set in.

The bed and chair were made from scratch since I do not know of any dimensional dies that will make something like that.  I used parts of the medium carousel for the Head and foot board.

The card has the feel of a doll house room, and I had a lot of fun creating it.  I didn't glue the teddy, bed spread, pillow, and pink crochet down, so hopefully Darlene has put everything back in place before shooting the video.  The teddy can sit on his chair or even on the floor or stand, he is fully jointed.  I have not used any wire, I never do in any of my teddies.  Check out my Etsy store, the only difference is that the larger teddies come with one-of-a-kind outfits that are of course removable.
Closeup of the bed spread and pillow
Here Teddy enjoys his chair

Closeup of the dollhouse scene with the pink crochet and crochet hook.

Well, that is it for now, at least for releases through Dutchpapercrafts.  I had a ball working with Darlene and our fantastic team of design divas.  We learned from each other and hope that you learned from us, and maybe even a little from me?

Dies are tools that can take on a whole different life, depending on how you look at them.  I hope that I have inspired you to think outside the box, to use a die for more than just its obvious use, but mostly, to have fun with your collection.  As I continue to grow with this hobby I find myself buying dies I would not have chosen two years ago but now consider essential pieces to add to my collection.

One last thing I want to say, and nobody has asked me to say that:  you get the best prices at Dutchpapercrafts, as well as the lowest shipping costs.  I, too, shop around, because I can't afford to blow money, not with the wildlife rehabilitation work that I do year round and the many animals I need to feed every single day.  I don't just shop at Dutchpapercrafts out of loyalty, I shop there because shipping happens quickly and the everyday prices simply can't be beat.

I look forward to your feedback.  Thank you for reading my little blog which is an ever changing animal just like the wildlife that change my life every day.  Fangs and claws, paper and glue, the story continues...

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Little flying squirrel baby and baby grays

Whoa, my rehab season started with a BANG!  Easter Sunday the first seven arrived, and now I am up to 14 babies, 13 gray squirrels and 1 tiny flying squirrel.

It has been a busy week with lots of new situations, but I have not lost a single baby of the newcomers.  I did, however, lose every single one of the initial neonates, and it turns out they succumbed to Giardia, a highly contagious parasite that responds to only a certain medication which I did not have in my arsenal nor knew that they were dying from this parasite.  Lesson learned, it was an exhausting battle that lasted 10 days. But now I know, and I will never lose another baby to this disease.

One of the babies arrived severely dehydrated, wet, and cold, and it had the dreaded "white eye syndrome" where the cornea of the eye, which is brown in healthy squirrels, has a whitish to bluish sheen.  Usually these babies die shortly upon arrival, but I had just gotten a small incubator from a friend as a surprise gift and decided to take on the battle.  We won, the baby did recover, the eyes actually returned to their usual brown color, and hopefully her vision will not be impaired.  It is too soon to tell, she can see, but I don't know how well just yet.

Here are pictures of the tiny flying squirrel boy.  I posed him on a knitted flying squirrel I designed, and he seemed to like to nuzzle his replacement mom.
Little flyer boy opened his eyes this morning, he is quite a little cutie.  I hope to get him company soon since flyers are highly social.  

Yesterday I had to go "squirrel fishing" here in town when the people could not get a little baby gray out from under their car.  Here is the little stinker, he had been hiding inside a rear tire.  

I hope you enjoyed this little glimpse into my world!


Thursday, April 17, 2014

Knitted Opossum FAMILY this time!

The feedback on Facebook was so overwhelming that I had to work on another opossum.  Of course I never write my designs down, meaning not one will ever look exactly the same.  I like it that way.

I decided to give this opossum slightly more adult facial features.  And once she was finished I couldn't resist but try my hand on a baby.  Trust me, while that might sound easy, it was not by any means.  I had to resort to very fine needles because thicker ones would have made for an ugly face and feet.  Just the legs and feet alone took about 90 minutes per foot = 360 minutes for just the four little legs and tootsies per baby.  I was pretty tired of pink toes afterwards, but I had to give her at least two babies.  

Some people do a double-take thinking this is a real live opossum family.  Of course I worked with pictures I had taken of opossums that have been in my care, so I knew exactly what I wanted to recreate.

So here she is, my possie mom.  She stands 7 1/2" high and measures 17" long nose tip to tail tip.  No wires of any kind, it is 100% yarn and poly fill.   All total it took well over 70 hours to create this family which is a true one-of-a-kind.  You can scour the internet high and low, there is nothing else out there even remotely like my design.  I am very proud of this.  The weird thing is, whenever I am finished with something that came out extremely well I then look at it later on and wonder how on earth I made that...

So, what do you think of this threesome?  It will be for sale in my Etsy store, just click on the squirrel with the red cast.  This is a true high end collector's item. And the fun will be over when I can no longer get this particular yarn.