Saturday, December 3, 2016

My Cardmaking Journey: How I Found Happiness Again

    Well, it would seem that getting back into blogging after being out of it for so long is much harder than it would appear but I will be back to regular posting (hopefully) soon.  But today, I do have a post for you and it's about my journey as a cardmaker and where I started and where I am now.  I would like to do a post like this every few months just so I can document for myself how far I've come and what I've changed for the better, and sometimes the worst.
     I started helping with holiday cards when I was little and my mom would buy the ones from the store and she would let me stamp with the 'original' rubber stamps.  You know the one I'm talking about, the ones with the wooden block on the back.  Yet, that was pretty much the extent of it for a long time.  I started doing my own store bought cards when I was in Missouri for college and I wanted to send holiday cards out except instead of stamps, I would decorate most of the envelopes with stickers.  That's around the time I started to enjoy sending cards out again and now I send out cards all the time, nine times out of ten they are homemade though instead of store bought.  The only cards that I routinely buy for myself now are my Christmas cards and that's only because I send out A LOT of holiday cards and I still feel a little daunted at the idea of making them all from my own head.
    I got into true cardmaking after I had been in the planner world for a little bit and noticed that all of these planners I was watching were really creative with paper in other ways too.  I wanted to be like that.  So, very slowly and then practically snowballing, I started collecting supplies.  My first love was, and still kinda is, beautiful patterned scrapbooking paper.  If I see a pretty page or pretty pack, I just have to get it... and come up with a use for it later.  I started getting into stamps, clear and cling stamps that is, when I bought my first issue of 'Cardmaking and Papercraft' which is a UK based papercrafting magazine that has a free goodie with every issue.  This issue came with a beautiful fairy stamp and some sentiments.  I also picked up some Alpha stamps since those were my favorite stickers to have I figured it would be good to have them in stamp form.  For a while that was all I had, no fancy machines, no score boards, no favorite stamp companies, none of that.  That all changed when I had surgery on my left leg and needed something to do while laid up.  Well, the left leg quickly became both legs and a few days ago I just had the third of fourth surgery since July.  So, needless to say I needed something to occupy my time while I was recouping at home and in bed and not really able to go out anywhere.  June is when I started getting all of the 'tools', inks, stamps, dies, embossing folders, seriously a lot of stamps guys, sequins, gems, and the mother of all, the Sizzix Big Kick.  Now my tools have grown even more to a Misti and an envelope punch and needless to say my supplies no longer fit into one box.  Yet, I am happy. So, so, happy and it's been a long time since I could say that and truly mean it.  I'm not happy because of the stuff I have, I'm happy because I have something to do and usually I am making a card for a reason and not just making to make (although it is still fun to do that sometimes).  For lack of a better way to say it, I have purpose again.  I have friends again, friends who share a common interest, I go out and enjoy myself, I have a little cardmaking business on Etsy and Facebook; simply put- I'm having fun with life again.  I love my little business and I am loving what I'm doing.  I've discovered the world of Pocket Letters as well and I've made so many friends that way as well.  Cardmaking has brought me the happiness and joy that I thought I had lost when I couldn't perform due to my legs.  In essence, it has given me meaning again.  Granted there will always be new and shiny crafting things I want but that's not what is at the heart of my happiness.  It's seeing people's faces when they open the card and see that it's personalised and homemade.  It's being able to answer questions that I had myself when I first started. My happiness, in root, is other people's happiness.
    I hope you enjoyed this very long post. As always, my links are down below, but I have also pictured a few of the cards that I've made that I'm most proud of, so take a look and tell me what you think!


Tuesday, November 1, 2016

The Battle of the Watercolor Palettes

 For beginner crafters out there, traversing the waters of watercolors can be treacherous and can leads to fewer hits than misses.  I'm here to tell you about what I think are the worst and the best palettes for beginners budget.  Now, this post is just about the palettes you can get, I'm not even going to go into the tubed colors you can buy now that are also watercolors.  Palettes are the easiest to work with and come with the greatest selection of colors for one price instead of, say, six tubes of color for the exact same price.
The first palette I have for you, pictured above, is from American Crafts and I bought it from Tuesday Morning.  At first I thought, oh this is great, it's super vibrant, and the colors selection is fantastic.  However, much to my dismay, the beautiful pigment stayed in the palette when I tried to paint with them.  The colors were very light, almost Pastel looking but not in a good way.  They did not mix up the way I wanted them too and it was very difficult to pick up any color.  I had to lay down the color a few times just to get it even remotely in the same solar system as the color that I wanted.  The only plus side to this palette is that it came with two pretty nice brushes and the packaging is pretty sturdy for being made out of plastic.
 The next palette is the Artists Loft pearlescent palette from Michaels. I payed around $5 for this palette and for that price it was worth each and every penny.  The colors are in the middle of the rode as far as I am concerned concerning pigmentation but the real winner is the shimmer.  Now, it's nothing like the Fine Tec shimmer watercolors but remember those are close to $30 but it does hold it's own.  The shimmer is really nice and shows up the best when the paint is dry.  I haven't had a chance to try every single color but the ones that I have tried are really really nice and great for adding a pop of something to your project. It does come with a brush but I wound up moving that to my embossing powders and am using one of the brushes that came with the American Crafts palette.
 Finally, the palette that surprised me the most, the Artists Loft 28 Color palette.  I purchased this for a little under $7.  If that is a little too high for you, they have smaller palette as well that is the same consistency.  These colors are absolutely amazing, especially for the price.  They are creamy, pigmented, and have a great range of colors.The only thing that isn't so fantastic about this palette is that you are constantly wetting the cakes of color because they absorb the water so quickly.  Other than that I have found no fault with this palette and I am really happy that I got it.

Do you have any watercolor palettes that you really enjoy? I would love to know down in the comments! XO
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Sunday, October 23, 2016

Be sure to check me out on Bloglovin'!

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Friday, October 21, 2016

Welcome Back!

Hello my lovely darlin's! I have been gone for quite some time, haven't I? In my defense I did have a summer full of surgeries, spending time in hospital beds (which I am still currently in), and having both legs in knee high casts.  So taking pictures and blogging and filming were not even plausible.  Now I'm slowly getting back to normal and so will this blog, but YouTube is going to take a little bit longer.  I missed putting reviews up for you guys and posting pictures.  I've been pretty active on my Instagram accounts though, because they are easy to post to.  It has been a really rough time not being able to have the outlets I am used to, to pour my energy into.  So I found another outlet, cardmaking.  Before my surgeries I was crafting a lot but it has become more than a hobby now.  I have an Etsy shop called Cardstock Queen (linked below) where I sell my handmade, individually unique, cards and planner dashboards.  I have even sold a few things so far, and of that I am very proud.  I have gotten into many different mediums when it comes to crafting and making cards from only being someone who used colored pencil and one or two Copic markers to using watercolors and acrylics to color my images.  This is something I can pour my heart and soul into daily and come out almost as satisfied as I was when I was performing.  I also color a lot now in coloring books and practice hand lettering for my cards.  This by no means mean that I have shied away from my makeup, oh no, if anything it has made me more aware of colors and more bold in what I try.  So, this means that this blog will become more than just makeup and a few life updates.  There are going to be posts about my cards and new techniques that I learn.  There will be posts about my everyday life and my planners and how I stay organized in that sense.  I hope you enjoy this new change to the blog and are glad to see me back.  Below are some pictures of cards that I have done that are up or will be going up in my shop very soon, enjoy! XOXO


Saturday, September 10, 2016

Sephora Wishlist #1

Sephora Wishlist #1
So I'm back, even though I'm still pretty much on bed rest, I feel good enough to try and start writing again.  I wanted to start off with something a little simpler and not so picture heavy since I can't get to my products right now.  This means there will be a lot of lifestyle and about me posts, if that's okay.
I absolutely adore Sephora, especially when the people are nice and the area is clean (trust me, that didn't used to be true of certain places).  These are my high end, really spendy, wish items. I would love to know what some of yours are!
1. Miss Dior Blooming Bouquet: I have never owned this perfume but everytime I go to Sephora I get a little sample just so I can have some on hand because it is one of my favorite scents. The price tag on this little guy is $78 for 1.7oz.  I haven't yet, but I definitely think it will be worth the splurge, possibly very very soon for a very special event.
2. Bite Amuse Bouche lipstick in Meringue which is a nice peachy nude.  I've tested the consistency and the wear time on my hand in stores and it is just so creamy and wears longer than you would think it would given the consistency.  This lipstick runs $26 per bullet but they will last you a good while when taken care of properly.  You can find it here at the Sephora website or at the store.
3. Tarte Glamazon Pure Performance 12 hr lipstick in Foxy. I purely want to try this because I have never tried anything but Tarte's blushes.  This color looked like an amazing color for me and it's currently on sale for $14 but the regular price is $26 and you can find it here.
4. Clinique Take the Day Off Cleansing Balm: I used to use the Body Shop cleansing balm but I have run out and would like to try something different so I was ecstatic when I found this.  Initially I was looking for the Emma Hardie cleansing balm that so many blogger rave about but, alas, my search was fruitless.  This costs $29 and can be found here on the website or in most stores.  This is another one that may be purchased in the not so distant future.
5.  Too Faced Boudoir Eyes Palette.  I really wanted the romantic eyes palette but that has sadly been discontinued but this is pretty close in comparison in my eyes.  There are light and dark colors so you can go from day time to sultry in just a few swipes.  It's a great all around eye palette.  It costs $36 and can be found here.
6. Becca Shimmering Pressed Skin Perfector in Opal: Yes, I know this has a cult following but I really do want it because I like it and not just to have it.  If it's anything in consistency and  make like Champagne Pop I will be a happy girl.  The Shimmering pressed skin perfectors cost $38 and you can find them at the Sephora website, in store, or at Ulta.
7. Glam Glow mud mask.  Need anything more be said? This puppy will cost you $69 and the only place that I know for sure that carries it is Sephora.
8. The original Chocolate Bar palette: Ever since I discovered Too Faced, I have wanted the Chocolate Bar Palette.  This would be a great staple piece in my palette collection.  This palette costs $49 and can be found here at the Sephora website or in store at Sephora and Ulta.
9. Urban Decay Naked Illuminating Shimmering Powder for Face and Body in Luminous.  I am a highlighter fiend, I absolutely adore every highlighter that I can get my hands on. I don't mind glitter in my highlight and there is a lot of glitter in this highlighter.  I like that it's not only for the face but it's for the body too.  This product runs $32 and you can get it here on the Sephora website or in the store or at Ulta.
10. My final product is the Elizabeth and James Nirvana Rose perfume, which is new to the line.  I have yet to smell it but I love the Nirvana scents and I love roses, so where could I go wrong? I could get the rollerball for $25 but I really want the actual spray perfume.  I would get the 1.7oz spray perfume for $85, again, another big splurge item that will totally be worth it.  If you're curious about their new perfume, be sure to check it out here or in the Sephora store.