Tag Archives: ModPodge

Girl Power

Girl Power
Girl Power

Look who is pretty in pink. More importantly, look who is strong in pink. Canvas Corp is featuring my Girl Power tag and tutorial on their blog today.

CCB-tag-Betsy-Skagen-110655

Read the rest of this entry

Was Lewis Carroll a secret crafter?–an Alice in Wonderland Altered Tin

Was Lewis Carroll a secret crafter?–an Alice in Wonderland Altered Tin

Alice-Tin-by-Paper-Calliope-170841

Becoming a professional crafter has changed my life. Monday mornings? Couldn’t be better! Daily commute? No sweat! I. Love. My. Job.

Admittedly though, it has made me a little odd. I am often going out in public with dyed blue fingers or traces of glitter in my hair. And seriously, who besides me makes frantic dashes to the dollar store before it closes for the night in order to buy cheap dolls to dismember?

Ummmm…Apparently several of you. When I asked fellow Alpha Stamps Design Team Members that question, more than one had done the same thing. One, who shall remain nameless, coughTristancough had bought 12.

Scary.

Alice-Tin-by-Paper-Calliope-205522

This is not the first time I have dismembered body parts in the name of crafting…

Read the rest of this entry

Welcome to our cottage on the lake–sorry no synchronized flushes

Welcome to our cottage on the lake–sorry no synchronized flushes

Paper-Calliope-Lake-Sign-by-Betsy-Skagen-103215

Next year will be the 75th anniversary of our family’s cottage and I thought it was high time to acknowledge our family’s long history with this humble yet special place on “da lake”.

Humble is not some half-hearted attempt at being polite. I literally mean humble. Our little log cabin has been flanked in recent years by McMansions haughtily looking down from climate-controlled alfresco kitchens and his and her en suites complete with synchronized flushing.

Betsy Skagen of Paper Calliope

That’s Me! On the back steps of The Cottage.

While I might not object to a few upgrades to our cottage–like being able to take a shower some place other than in the basement with chipmunks dashing in to sneak peeks at my lady parts, I cannot imagine replacing it with some giant lake home.

Our cottage has too much character, heart and history–from the open loft guaranteed to cause concussions in any adult over five feet tall, to the six-foot wide longhorn steer horns above the table that my grandfather acquired somewhere in Texas, to the 1960s retro motel towels that my uncle “borrowed” when he traveled the state with his construction crews.

Bobber-girl by Betsy Skagen

I bet people in alfresco kitchens don’t let their kids stick fishing lures in their swimsuits.

Read the rest of this entry

You spin me right ’round–like a Valentine carousel

You spin me right ’round–like a Valentine carousel
You spin me right ’round–like a Valentine carousel

 

 

 

I don’t think there’s any sweeter combination than Valentines and merry-go-rounds–at least if you exclude the food category. Everyone knows there’s nothing sweeter than a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup.
Valentine-Carousel-by-Betsy-Skagen-of-Paper-Calliope-033940

This carousel features glittering lights, prancing horses in perfect pastels and mid-century sweethearts all dolled up for the holiday.  Read the rest of this entry

Turkeys aren’t the only birds around here tonight

Turkeys aren’t the only birds around here tonight

Altered-Bird-Tin-Ornament-by-Betsy-Skagen-of-Paper-Calliope-025

For my last guest post at Gina’s Designs, I shared one of my favorite kinds of projects: altered tin ornaments. 

I’m Betsy Skagen of Paper Calliope, and on this Thanksgiving Eve my heart is filled with gratitude for getting to spend the last month  at Gina’s Designs. It has been a fun and delightful adventure. 

Altered-Bird-Tin-Ornament-by-Betsy-Skagen-of-Paper-Calliope-033

Altered-Bird-Tin-Ornament-by-Betsy-Skagen-of-Paper-Calliope-051

 

Make a vintage cell phone charging station

Make a vintage cell phone charging station

Paper-Calliope-Robins-Nest-Phone-Book-1 Remember when we relied on those massive directories to look up addresses and telephone numbers? Now they are pretty much a thing of the past, which–drumroll please–makes them vintage!

That’s why I hope you check out the tutorial for this cute vintage cell phone charging station I made.

Read the rest of this entry

Be a trendsetter–join the fun of Artist Trading Spoons

Be a trendsetter–join the fun of Artist Trading Spoons

Paper-Calliope-Artist-Trading-Spoons-1

 You’ve heard of Artist Trading Cards (ATCs) and Artrist Trading Blocks (ATBs), but I bet you never heard of the Artist Trading Spoons (ATS). Why? Because I just invented them!

To accompany the Robin’s Nest recipe themed blog hop, I decided to have some fun and create some retro ATSes featuring bold and fun mid-century graphics.

Read the rest of this entry

Hop to it and create some springtime decorations

Hop to it and create some springtime decorations

Paper-Calliope-Whisker-Graphics-two-bunnies

Beginning this project was scary. Burned into my memory is the clay dog I proudly gave my mother when I was in elementary school. Purple, with orange zig zags and green dots, it was supposed to be an artsy rendition of our Golden Retriever. In reality it looked like it have five legs and a mass of tumors. I guess I really can’t blame my mom for her less than enthusiastic reception–or at least that’s what I have been telling my analyst every week since 1979.

Read the rest of this entry

A mixed media reflection on finding my tribe

A mixed media reflection on finding my tribe

Paper-Calliope-Finding-My-Tribe-final

“The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched. They must be felt from the heart.”  –Helen Keller

Each month the Robin’s Nest provides its International Design Team with a quote to inspire our art projects. This month’s quote got me thinking about focusing 2015 on the “things” that are important to me. One such beautiful thing–which cannot be seen or touched–is loyalty in friendship. Read the rest of this entry

Artist Trading Block: “Rain” #2 in Jane Austen ATB Series

Artist Trading Block: “Rain” #2 in Jane Austen ATB Series
Artist Trading Block: “Rain” #2 in Jane Austen ATB Series

Several months ago I began my foray into the world of Artist Trading Blocks (ATB) with a sculptural block celebrating Jane Austen’s Emma.

A delightful quote from the 1996 Jane Austen movie Emma, starring Gywneth Paltrow, inspired me to create that first ATB. Yet, a second line in the movie, when a drenched Mr. Knightley proclaimed his love to Emma, also caught my attention.

“I rode through the rain. I’d ride through worse than that if I could just hear your voice 
telling me that I might, at least, have some chance with you.” 

As the months went by, my desire to make another Jane Austen ATB based on this line only increased. Finally, as our long winter finally slid into spring, and our own rains began, I decided to go ahead and make this ATB.

The trouble is, I knew what I wanted it to look like and I knew it would not be easy. Then I came across The Robin’s Nest Sea Glass Tear Drops and I knew I had found my perfect raindrops.

I might write a tutorial for this ATB in the days ahead–but this project took so long to create and I am so pleased with the results, that I am reverting back to my five-year-old self and cannot wait any longer to show it to you.

Introducing: “Rain” #2 in the Jane Austen ATB Series:

Artist Trading Block Rain by Paper Calliope

This is how the Rain ATB appear when it is closed. Mr. Knightley’s horse sits atop the box.

Read the rest of this entry