Happy Mother’s Day! (photo heavy)

     Posted by Brooke on May 14, 2017

Happy Mother’s Day to all of the biological moms, adoptive moms, foster moms, stepmoms, future moms, pet moms, single dads, etc.!


My mom is wonderful and she is one of my favourite people on the planet.

This weekend she got to go to Toronto with her mom, sister, and cousin to celebrate Mother’s Day together. Since we would be apart on Mother’s Day we celebrated it a bit early by having a CRAFTERNOON. My mother, who doesn’t have a crafty bone in her body, had decided that she wanted to make something for each of her family members as a mother’s day gift. We’ve NEVER crafted together. Seriously, my mom and I are totally different in that department. So we set aside a few hours last Sunday to spend time together and scrapbook. My dream. Not hers.


I am SO unbelievably proud of her. She completely abandoned her comfort zone and got CREATIVE.

She came to the store to pick out her supplies, paper lines, and adhesive with just a little bit of help from me. She ended up choosing Kaisercraft Cherry Tree Lane & Pebbles Tealightful for her albums. Then came the hard fun part.


We worked on the “Cousins” books together and I made the kraft book with her help and supervision.

The blank, cardstock mini albums are available in the store. Sandy does a beautiful job putting these together; they’re the perfect size and I love the magnetic closure.

This kraft book was made for my grandmother. It includes pictures of her with her best friend getting up to all kinds of shenanigans. Their favourite pastime is going shopping and taking pictures on benches, so I cut a bench diecut with the Silhouette machine then inked it up for the album. It was super important to my mom that we included a bench so I put it prominently on the first page.img_4069img_4070

As I was making this album my mom helped with the layering, paper choices, and picture layouts. I was so impressed by how quickly she picked up on the techniques. Rule of thirds? She nailed it.

I did try to keep the albums simple…no techniques or art supplies…just layering and gluing. It streamlined the process and made it less overwhelming for a newbie like my mom.


For the “Cousins” books we tried to keep it simple and clean. We each worked on an album simultaneously with me basically just following along with what my mom was doing.

I would say that my mom did about 75% of the work. REALLY. I just cut papers and glued stuff down.


The top album is the one my mom worked on and the bottom album was the one I decorated.


These three ladies take a picture together at every family gathering; they make a perfect mini album.


Sorry for bragging about my mom this whole post…I’m just so impressed by her.



It was so lovely to spend the afternoon together and be able to work together one on one. I love how the albums turned out and I hope the recipients loved them as much as we did!

I’m so grateful that my mom asked me to help her complete this special project; I had a blast and seeing how happy/proud she was with the finished product made it that much more satisfying.

I hope you all get spoiled today! Happy Mother’s Day.

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Hello and Happy Almost Mother’s Day…

     Posted by Norine on May 7, 2017

Actually Mother’s Day isn’t for a week yet, but I thought I’d post this card since it’s right around the corner and you might find something here to inspire you if you’re hand making a card for your Mom!  And also because Distress Oxides!  Have you tried them yet?  Have you divined the mystery of the chalk ink that isn’t chalky and that blends so creamily?

The first thing I want to show you is the color palette of the Distress Oxide inks.  I don’t know if there will be other colors released, but for now there are 12 and I needed them all!  They are meant to match the color by the same name in the regular distress ink palette, and I don’t know about your thoughts on these colors but I love them SO much more than the originals!  They are more subtle.  Creamier, and over-all more delicious!  Here are the current set of colors.  I know right!?  So yummy and sherbet-y!mom2

I colored these tags by smooshing the ink onto my craft mat and then spritzing with water.  Then I ran the tags through the puddles of color.  As they were drying, I flicked them with droplets of water and dabbed to dry, leaving the white “oxidized”area.  Then I stamped an image with the same ink pad to finish it off.   A nice solid color coverage from this ink - unlike what the original Distress inks do.  And I love the chalky finish that doesn’t rub off onto your fingers!  They are quite unique in the stamping world, for the way their properties work.


Next, I wanted to try blending colors together.  From left to right: Worn Lipstick, Spiced Marmalade, Fossilized Amber, then Wilted Violet and Broken China in the middle and Cracked Pistachio, Fossilized Amber and Spiced Marmalade on the right.


For my Mother’s Day card I used the colors of ink pads shown in the photo above.


Then, I flicked water droplets on the paper and dried them to “lift” the color off.  Then I random-stamped the floral blooms stamp from the Sizzix, Thanks a Bunch stamp set and heat embossed with white.  I finished by stamping on white card stock, with Faded Jeans Distress Oxide and clear heat-embossing over that!  That’s another unique property of the Oxide inks - they are wet enough to hold embossing powder for heat embossing so you always have the exact same embossing powder to match your ink!
Finally, I monochromatic painted in the flowers with a blue/grey pen and water brush, then punched it out of the white paper and popped it up on the card with dimensional adhesive.  The addition of some silver cord and a variety of colored enamel dots and this card is finished.


Now, I need to get it in the mail! Isn’t there a rule that says if it arrives a week late, then the points for “handmade” are cancelled?

Enjoy the rest of your day!

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DIY Abstract Watercolour Art

     Posted by Brooke on May 3, 2017


Large, textured art pieces can make a huge statement as part of your home decor, but not everyone is able to collect original art. For those of you who don’t have the resources or inclination to become  art collectors, I have something a bit artsy to share with you today. Yes, artsy. Don’t run away screaming.

I know some people are a little bit intimidated as soon as they hear the words: “artsy”, “mixed media”, or “abstract”.

Chill out.

I’ve felt a little bit intimidated by mixed media before as well…but you learn by doing, right? I know it can be hard to know which product is used for what and how to use it, but that’s why we have classes/teaching sessions/knowledgeable staff to help you.

For my first project I used this palette as my inspiration:


I love the bright Spring colours with the addition of the gold. I love these colours and they coordinate with my home decor so I just went with ‘em.

mixed media prima watercolor canvas brooke gorrell for love is in the details

I used an 8×10 Prima watercolor canvas as my base. Using texture paste, a stencil. my palette knife, and gesso I was able to create texture with varying depths. Once it all dried I applied Prima Watercolor Confections paints in large, free brushstrokes.

mixed media prima watercolor canvas brooke gorrell for love is in the details

I loved that pop of gold in the colour palette so decided to use my neglected gold alcohol ink to get a vibrant, shiny metallic.

I’ve been learning lately that sometimes you just have to let go and CREATE. Get messy and try new stuff. Think outside of your box.

Once I made this one I knew I had to do it again. The only differences between the canvas above and the canvas below are the addition of modeling paste & this colour palette:


I love that this project uses a textured, simple base and then you can choose whatever colours match your style.

mixed media prima watercolor canvas brooke gorrell for love is in the details

This canvas is 11×14…perfect size to hang on the wall or prop on a shelf.

mixed media prima watercolor canvas brooke gorrell for love is in the details

A close-up of the different textures. I tried to keep it organic…trying not to worry about visible brushstrokes or mistakes. The layering process is very forgiving.

I used watercolours to build up the colour depth before adding the gold alcohol ink.

mixed media prima watercolor canvas brooke gorrell for love is in the details

It looks complicated but in reality it was easy to do. You just have to let loose and get creative.

One little addition I snuck in is a few Prima paper flowers (can you see one in the bottom right??). I stuck them into the modeling paste before coating the whole thing in gesso as preparation for watercolour painting.

mixed media prima watercolor canvas brooke gorrell for love is in the details

I know a project like this can seem daunting but it is completely doable. A few basic products and a little bit of creativity are all you need. You can add a little bit or a whole lot of texture and use any colours you like. Totally up to you.

Interested in taking a mixed media class? Let us know!

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