items in 2010 Life Path Challenge More in 2010 Life Path Challenge pool

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

WOYWW ~ What's On Your Work Desk Wednesday

Been back home (we're Americans living in Ukraine) for just over two weeks from being a month in California.  It's been a big adjustment from the warm sunshine to our deep snow.  Jet-lag is always an issue, but after two weeks I'm getting almost full nights sleep.  So today is actually the first arting I've done in two weeks plus the month I was gone.  Too long to go, but it is what it is.  Hope you like it.

The picture of Mr. 007 was cut out of a magazine and glued to cardboard so it will hold up for a while as a stencil.  Thanks for visiting and commenting.  Sure appreciate it.

Monday, December 10, 2012


This is so fun.  If you like to doodle you're going to love this flower.  As I started the video to watch I had to stop and go get my pencil and paper so I could work right along with the it.  You'll probably want to do the same.  Enjoy!

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Botanic Journal Page ~ Ukraine

"She who has beautiful roses in her garden, must have beautiful roses in her heart."  A journal page I did.  The fern and rose petals are dried material from my yard.  The rose tickets at the bottom are from the Botanical Garden in Kiev, Ukraine near where we live.  We enjoyed a visit there this past summer.  I used stamping, sprays and paints to do my background.  Hope you like it.  Let me know what you think.

Friday, November 30, 2012


I am standing upon the seashore.  A ship at my side spreads her white sails to the morning breeze and starts for the blue ocean.  She is an object of beauty and strength.  I stand and watch her until at length she hangs like a speck of white cloud just where the sea and sky come to mingle with each other.

Then someone at my side says:  "There, she is gone!"

"Gone where?"

Gone from my sight.  That is all.  She is just as large in mast and hull and spar as she was when she left my side and she is just as able to bear the load of living freight to her destined port.

Her diminished size is in me, not in  her.  And just at the moment when someone at my side says:  "There, she is gone!"  There are other eyes watching her coming, and other voices ready to take up the glad should:  "Here she comes!"

And that is dying.

~ Henry Van Dyke

Tuesday, November 27, 2012


Jennibellie does it again.  She has such fun ideas for creating papers.  See here what she does with a craft mat and paints to make pretty papers for collage and mixed-media.

Monday, November 26, 2012


I thought this was such a cute idea for a little girl.  It could be done in place of a Christmas stocking or even as ornaments on a tree.  These are done my Maria Vitalina.  You can see more of her lovely work on her Facebook site:  https://www.facebook.com/MariaVitalinaPorFlaviaPegado


Wanted to share these beautiful chairs with you for ideas on what to do with that old chair you have sitting somewhere.  We all have them.  We don't do anything with them and yet we don't want to throw them out.  I have just such a heavy oak chair.  Now if I can be brave enough to paint it.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012


I am now entering my third week in California where my family lives.  I got an emergency call just one night after returning home from the country of Georgia (south of Russia).  I left the next morning.  My father, who is less than two months short of his 90th year had a brain bleed and they didn't expect he would live.  He rallied, we thought he was going to make it and now he is not.  We thank God for all the years he has had.

He is now enrolled in the hospice program and we have support in his dying process.  Though it is hard to loose a family member, we know that God has "numbered our days" and we trust him for that.  I am grateful that I can be here as a support for my step-mom and my two sisters.  I would greatly appreciate your prayers for them.  These two beautiful flower pictures are actually some I took in 2010 while here in winter.  Just as the flowers, we are each and all here for a "season," so be sure to tell your loved ones what they mean to you.

Thursday, November 8, 2012


Already we have had several freezes in Ukraine so the flowers have been gone now for a bit, but I wanted to show you this pretty little corner of my garden because in the cold and bitterness of winter it is a delight for the soul to see something lovely.  Therefore as winter goes on I shall occasionally post some beautiful little tidbit from the summer display.  Like my art, the garden is one of my areas of pleasure.  It really is simply another expression of art using the medium of the garden.

When we moved to this home 15 years ago the yard was nothing more than a wild forest.  It was chest high in  "maleena" (wild raspberries)  and an abundant crop of "krapeeva" (stinging nettle).  I never had a plan to necessarily do the whole yard, but little by little, year after year I would plant more and it just grew.  Many of the sweet people of Ukraine gave me things from their gardens to get a start.  From that time I've transplanted and added.  This tiny teapot above has been in the garden since we moved here.  Winter after winter it survives through the season and moves from one spot to another.  As you can see here I do have a few little figurines in the garden that some have given me, but you can rest assured there are no elves or gnomes lurking around in the tall plantings.  Both of these pictures are shots of my rock garden.  It started out as a small clay hill in one corner of the yard in which I knew not a lot would grow so rock garden seemed like the thing to do.  Hope you like this little peek into my garden.

Monday, November 5, 2012


"Life is like a bowl of cherries."
"Keep moving forward, don't look back."

"Live everyday up to your expectations, not others."

Saturday, November 3, 2012


Here's a very fun and simple stencil technique that I'm really wanting to try.  Just another twist on stencils, but I'd have not thought of it had I not seen it.  Give it a try.

Friday, November 2, 2012


 Get your workshop in order so you can be more productive and more creative.

FREE WORKSHOP with Rhomany
(Self study)
"Forget 'decluttering', 'minimalism' & 'organisation strategies'. Join me for a month-long nurturing of your creative space."
Watch the video, then access the workshop from below it.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Jennibellie ~ Flowers from Scraps

These are the cutest flowers ever and you'll love how simple they are.  A great way to use up those scraps we always have so many left over.

And if you still need more flower making ideas then go to my Pinterest board called "Crafting Flowers" for lots more tutorials:  www.pinterest.com/coleenfranks

Thursday, October 25, 2012

"Birds of a Feather" Mixed-Media Tutorial

On Facebook someone asked me how I did these.  She liked seeing through the image to the text or music below.  It really is not difficult so I shall summarize enough that you could repeat it.  This one has a Russian music sheet. And you'll need napkin images of your choice.  As you can see I like birds and these were from my napkin collection.

I started with a card stock base to give a bit more strength, though I have done these on heavy paper as well.  You could also gesso your paper to add strength, but I don't often do that.  Some of it I stamped before I did anything around the edges and some stamping I did after adhering my text and images.  It really is your choice.  This one has a Russian language phone book page in the background.

After stamping you are ready to adhere your background layer.  You can also paint and do other decor around your edges.  This background text is a Russian language phone book page again.  I like using foreign text.  Rather gives an air of mystery. Use Elmer's Glue (PVA) diluted at least 50% or ModPodge.  You want it pretty watery.  Living in Ukraine where I can't easily buy many materials I mostly use the white glue.  It works well and it's cheap.

Paint the surface of the cardstock where you will lay your background paper or paint the back of the image.  I lay the text down, paint the glue on top of it and immediately take it to my heat gun (hair dryer also works) to dry as fast as I can to prevent too much buckling in the lower card stock.  When that is dry I repeat the process for the napkin (all layers removed except top image).  I do not paint the back of the napkin.  Only the surface upon which I will lay it.  It is too delicate.  Once down I paint on top of it, but here you must be very careful not to overwork it as napkin fibers break down quickly and it could start tearing so watch closely as you work.  Then go immediately again to the heat gun and dry.  When you are all done you can press it in a book to help flatten, but I usually don't mind a bit of buckling as I think that adds to the character of the piece.    I also do these in my art journal.  See previous post of Oct. 11 or go here http://vintageterrace2.blogspot.com/2012/10/projects-using-tissuenapkins-for.html.  In addition, the post just below shows a suitcase I altered using napkins.  Give it a whirl.  These are fun and there are so many beautiful napkin images.

Monday, October 22, 2012


I just love old things and this leather suitcase was in our attic for years.  Someone gave it to us almost 20 years ago when we came to the mission field to pack our things in.  Sometimes I just wish there would be a history we could hear.  I just wonder the places this old suitcase has traveled before it even got to us.  I wonder if the first owners are even still living and how interesting it would be for them to see what's happened to it.  Along with my love of old things and history, a number of these pictures are relatives of friends of mine..  The flowers and colors are from napkins.  Yet to be done is the other side.  Hope you like it.  Let me know what you think.


Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Thursday, October 11, 2012


 It's a little hard to see, but there was this cute kitty paper I left exposed on this tag.  I really like the roughness that the top layer leaves.
All these projects were done with the layering technique I posted about yesterday.  This is a mini-book.  Left page says:  "Therefore if the Son makes you free you shall be free indeed."  John 8:36

This and the following cards are "Fat Book" pages I did for a swap.  I just like birds.

A post card that was mailed off and never made destination.  I guess someone along the way wanted it for their collection.

This and the following are again "Fat Book" pages made for a swap.

Yesterdays posting has a link for instructions on making "fabric-paper." Thanks for stopping by.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012


I am including here a link to an earlier posting in 2010 that gives instructions how to make this "fabric paper."  It's not my original idea, but I can't tell you where I saw it. 

I started with fabric on bottom layer (you can see it, white with black petal pattern), then a layer of scrap papers.  For this I used various old Christmas  and other gift wrap. 

The final top layer can be tissue paper or the white layer of napkins (or colors for that matter).  The final result of either leaves a very textured top layer great for all kinds of crafting.

This lovely piece is done with dried ferns from my garden.  They worked just as well as the paper with nothing done differently.   Tomorrow I'll post a variety of projects I've made with these papers.  Thanks for stopping by and I love it when you leave comments.  You can find instructions for fabric paper here:  http://vintageterrace2.blogspot.com/2010/03/fabric-paper-instructions.html

Monday, October 8, 2012


Recently I have participated in a napkin swap in two different Yahoo sites:  Christian Paper Artists and Altered Books.  So I thought I'd show some of the things I've done with napkins.  Though I have used napkins for years in various projects, this is one of the first journal pages I did a few years ago surrounding faces I'd drawn.  It was rather an experiment, but I was happy how it turned out.  The grapes and leaves are napkins.
I was so happy when I found these bird napkins in Kiev, Ukraine.  The birds and the leaves are the napkins.  I also used music sheets from paper applied with thinned white glue like the napkins.  Left page is written, "It is in all of us- to express, to create, to seek approval and fellowship of others."  On right page, "It is in all of us to be brave, to seek adventure, to want an amazing love, And to never forget---we are on this earth to love one another."

The pumpkin and the basket are napkins along with the top leaf border and right border. The bottom leaves are simply paper cut-outs.  The right page says, "A Sweet Friendship Refreshes the Soul." Proverbs 27:9  This page was done as a monthly verse challenge on Yahoo's Christian Paper Artists site.

This last art journal example is using the inside (the non-printed) part of the napkin.  I liked this picture but I didn't want it to so dominate the layout so I toned it down by covering it with the napkin.  Left page says, "Help me to unearth the passions of my heart that lay buried in my youth."  Ken Gire.  The right side, along the opening lily says, "And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom."  Anais Nin.  Tomorrow I shall post "altered art" pieces done with napkins.  Thanks for stopping by. I so appreciate your comments.

Saturday, October 6, 2012


I love taking ordinary items and turning them into something beautiful.  It just fits with good stewardship of our world in recycling things whenever we can.  No, I didn't make this clock or the things below, but wanted to share their beauty.

I chose these pictures from things I have found across the internet and posted to my Pinterest board.  Don't know what that is?  Well, I didn't either at first.  It is a "virtual bulletin board."  One can collect the things you love and pin them to whatever category boards you set up.

So, if you'd like to see my boards and find out more, or if you'd like to explore more on these individual artists go to this link:   www.pinterest.com/coleenfranks

The specific board for these items are listed under "Altering Books and other things."

Lots more altered art there to see and explore.

I have an old globe. My wheels are turning.

I wonder if my sister would notice is I stole this out from under her wig?

Love this. Wonder if one of my musical friends can find me an old defunct violin.  Which one of these projects is your favorite?

Monday, October 1, 2012


HAPPY FALL TO ALL!  I used napkins to create this journal page.  The page on the right says "A sweet friendship refreshes the soul."  Proverbs 27:9.  This was a challenge for September for Christian Paper Artists on Yahoo Groups.  I used text and music sheets for the background, then covered with some paints before applying the napkins.  The top and right boarder leaves, the pumpkin and the basket are all napkins.  The green leaves on the bottom are paper cut-outs. There's some stamping and the word "Friends" was done with a stencil and some wall paste.

Sunday School Crafts ~ Ukraine

This is our Sunday school director Helen leading her class of 4 and 5 year olds in a flannel graph lesson.  We had already done their crafts which are laying on the table and seen below.

 Every Sunday I lead a team that goes into the various classes to do the crafts.  I have two ladies and myself that help prepare and two youth that go and do the crafts.  Training up the next generation to do this.
 The verse in Russian says: "Jesus loves the little children."
This is a picture of Liza with the 6 and 7 year old class doing the same project as above.  Liza is great with the kids and very creative herself.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012


This  is a sampling of some fans that went to a group of Texas ladies.     One of the ladies had seen what we did with the kids this  summer and thought it would be a  nice  idea  for  her  group.    So 25 of these pretties flew off to Texas not long ago.  I know it seems late for fans, but things stay hot in Texas a lot longer than in most other places.  They all have Bible verses on both sides so they will be a  nice  witness.    And another benefit is that they really work well to blow the heat off your brow.

Monday, September 24, 2012


A cyber friend has shared this great site with me. Thank you Michele Poehler of Ontario for such a fun place to play.  So many people on Facebook send me game requests, but I'm just not a gamer.  I wasn't a gamer on boards when I was a kid.  I didn't do puzzles (I know, I'm telling my age) and I don't do computer games, but I do art.  That is my addiction, if you could call it one.  And now I've found a way to do it on the computer as well.  That's what this whimsical little drawing is about...being creative on computer.  Oh, Michele, what have you done to me.  I love it.
You can find it here: http://www.zefrank.com/scribbler/scribblertoo/

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