Thursday, September 24, 2015

Welcome to today's Guest Designer, Mary Elizabeth!

Today we are welcoming Mary Elizabeth of 'M.E. and My Walk on the Creative Side' as our Guest Desginer. Jane was chosen by the DT as the winner of the 'Stitch in Time' challenge. So, without further ado let's move on to hear from Mary Elizabeth.

I have always enjoyed being creative. In fact, I thought I might go to art school after I finished high school. Instead I ended up getting a mathematics degree and being a university professor. Life is funny … isn’t it. Although I absolutely love teaching, I find that my crafting keeps me sane. I can let go of life’s stresses and just lose myself amidst paints, inks, and paper.

The project that I made for Frilly and Funkie’s “Chalk It Up!” challenge combines my love of crafting with my love of teaching. September is when many students go back to school after the summer holiday comes to an end. What a great time for a chalk-themed challenge! As a mathematics teacher, I use a a lot of chalk; so, of course I made a tag dedicated to going back to school. I took some of Tim Holtz’s Idea-ology paper that had the alphabet on it and adapted Tim’s “chalkboard” stamping technique for use with a stencil. (You can find a complete tutorial of Tim’s technique on his November Tag for 2013 blogpost.) For my stencil adaptation, I began by applying Distress Embossing Ink through Tim’s Numbered stencil with an ink blending tool. I sprinkled on Ranger Ink’s frosted crystal embossing powder over the stenciled numbers. I heated the embossing powder per Tim’s directions on his blog. Then I put the stencil back over the embossed numbers and applied white chalk over through the stencil on top of the frosted crystal embossed numbers. A cotton swab made the perfect tool for rubbing in the excess chalk through the stencil. I then removed the stencil. I was so excited because only the stenciled image had chalk on it! (Usually I get chalk everywhere on a project like this!) A thin black marker was used to provide some shadows around my chalked numbers. What a really cool background for my school-themed tag.

I stamped three apples from Tim Holtz's Mini Schoolhouse blueprint stamps on watercolor paper. I colored them with Distress Markers and a water brush detailer. After that dried completed, I fussy cut the apples and gave them three coats of Ranger’s Melt Art Ultra Thick Embossing Enamel (UTEE). I also fussy cut some of Tim’s Found Relatives (that looked like they were dressed up to go back to school). I added the relatives and apples to my tag with foam adhesive squares. Some tissue tape, a remnant rub sentiment, and a pencil stub tag tie completed the project.

I'm sure you'll all agree that Mary Elizabeth's mathematical tag is sensational and has really measured up to our challenge! Thank you so much for joining us as a Guest Designer Mary Elizabeth.

If you would like to be in with the chance to join us as Guest Designer all you need to do is join in with the current challenge 'Chalk It Up!'.


  1. Fantastic tag from Mary Elizabeth, beautifully made to fit the chalkboard and back to school themes. The uteed apples pop fabulously. Nicola x

  2. What a darling tag! So many clever ideas. I love it.

  3. What a fabulous tag! That technique is simply wonderful. I love how those red apples pop off the chalk background. Beautiful work, Mary Elizabeth!

  4. Wonderful tag and a great chalk technique...perfect project for a math teacher! Wow, a mathematician and an artist...that's a unique use of both sides of your brain! Bravo! Great to see you here and your artwork featured, Mary Elizabeth, and learn a bit more about you!

  5. What a fantastic tag Mary!!! LOVE your clever use of chalk here and those beautiful shiny apples! Jenny x

  6. What a striking design. Congrats on your GD spot Mary Elizabeth a fab tag.
    Julie x

  7. Yay, Mary Elizabeth! You totally nailed this one. Love the way you interpreted the challenge and how spot on it is with the back-to-school theme. The apples are perfect, the ruler and the children - all a total WOW! And the pencil hanger - inspired! So tickled to have you this week as our guest designer!


  8. This is such a fun tag. I really like the use of the pencil stub as part of the hanger.