Monday, September 15, 2014

Summer Memories Ornament

Every summer we embark on a multitude of adventures.  Exploring becomes a way of life either on a stroll to the park, hike in the mountains or a swim at the beach.

As an artist I always try to come up with unique ways to capture my adventure and preserve it. Back in June I was lucky to share an adventure to the Jersey Shore with my creative friend Marfi Bradford, who traveled to me from Arizona for some artful fun and exploring.

Everyday became a road trip to all parts of the Tri-State area.  One of those trips was to Asbury Park and Ocean Grove, NJ.  Both seashore towns located on the Jersey Coast.

While there I was collecting ephemera and found objects on the beach such as shells, drift wood, pebbles and sand.  When Marfi, My Mom and Myself returned we were all exploding with creativity, so we decided to start making art in the studio.  Marfi choose to work in a Halloween theme.  My mom created in a Victorian theme, while I wanted to capture the day at the shore.

My finished piece was created using some of the elements I found earlier at the shore. I called my piece: Queen of the Sea, a summer memories ornament which will preserve our memory of the day in Asbury Park and Ocean Grove.

-Drift wood
-Shells, all sizes
-Beach pebbles
-Lettered wood beads or scrabble pieces
-Chipboard letter
-White paper or floral wire
-Vintage image
-German silver glass glitter
-Glue: hot glue sticks, paper glue stick, tacky glue
-Tools: hot glue gun, scissors
-Other: pearl stick pin, chenille stem, navy fine glitter, card stock, letter sticker


1. Cut out vintage image from paper, adhere to card stock using paper glue stick, re-cut again. (This makes       the image more sturdy)
2. Hit glue the cut image to the center of a piece of drift wood or glue to the location of choice.
3. Begin layering shells and pebbles onto the drift wood.  Attach with hot glue.
4. Cover a chipboard letter with tacky glue and sprinkle with German glitter.  Then attach to the drift wood.
5. Thread a piece of paper wire with letter wood beads and hot glue each end to the drift wood.
6. Wrap a piece of chenille stem into a circle, attach to a stick pin, add a sticker and pearls. Insert into drift       wood.
7. Embellish vintage image with navy glitter and a crown shape made from a piece of chenille stem.
8. Write the date and location onto the back of the image.

-Create a tag.  Write the date, location, who you were with and a brief description onto the tag and attach to   the ornament.
-Use a photo of the day instead of the vintage image.
-Use a large shell as the base instead of the drift wood.

The possibilities are endless on what you can create out of your summer findings.
Thanks for visiting.


Tuesday, August 05, 2014

The Artful Girls Club Line!

I'm so excited to share with all of you the release of my friend Deb Hodge's new line: The Artful Girls Club. A line of clothing and accessories inspired by the vintage romance of decades long ago.  A place in time where Ladies were courted by dashing Gentlemen, soirees happened every weekend and pearls were a main part of one's jewelry collection.

A decade of innocence and carefree days by the lake, the beach and the garden. Lavender, roses and peonies filling vases in every home. Jeweled chandeliers shining over tea time afternoons and ladies retreats. Farm fresh delicacies, wood wagons and old fashioned beverages on summer days. Traveling back into time is easier then you think with a trip to Deb's World of Vintage Bliss. 

 At her newest site: The Artful Girls Club, you can rediscover a vintage world through various clothing and accessories from tee shirts to linen. There is something for everyone in her new shop.

For more information of Deb's works and to keep up to date with her workshops and products visit her blog, facebook and shop.  

I was gifted with one of Deb's pieces and I truly love it, she is truly amazing. Thanks Deb for sharing your world with us.


(Please note all photos belong to Deb Hodge)

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

LK Design Team Project by Marfi Bradford: Peter Pan Book/Puppet theatre

Do you believe in fairies?
I think you all know that I do!
Here's a Lisa Kettell Designs Team project
that has everything you need to help you believe! 
-Marfi Bradford
  • Cigar box or book shaped box (available at craft and hobby stores)
  • 2 Baby Bailey unpainted dolls
  • Fairy silhouette
  • wooden scrolls/trim
  • alphabet stickers
  • England stickers*
  • gold glitter washi tape
  • purple ribbon
  • treasure map
  • hot glue gun, glue sticks
  • white glue
  • glitter in gold & pink
  • craft wire
  • green scrapbook paper
  • acrylic pant: white, peach, orange, gold, pink, red, light green, dark green, dark blue, brown, black
  1. Paint baby bailey dolls to look like Wendy and Peter. Then hot glue purple ribbon to top           of her head, add pink glitter to top of her ankles.
  2. Next fold a small amount of green paper to resemble a hat for peter, hot glue to his head       poke craft wire into back of dolls, set aside.
  3. Paint the wooden trim gold and add glitter. Paint inside of box dark blue and add white to create clouds.
  4. Position Big Ben sticker in front of the clouds, or, paint him on. Then glue green paper to       lid of box, paint outside of box gold. 
  5. Open box add washi tape across the top and hot glue wooden trim to frame inside of box.     add stickers and silhouette to box lid to create the cover.
  6. Put a small amount of hot glue on tips of the wire attached to the dolls and position them         to look like they're flying. 
  7. Add treasure map to inside lid and dry brush gold paint on corners of cover and the map.
Hope this was fun...I've been outside most of this week adding arches and making a bed out of
bent wood and an iron cot! When it's ready it'll be covered in vines and flowers. -Marfi Bradford

I hope you enjoyed Marfi's project for the Lisa Kettell Design Team.  Her work is filled with so much magic, enchantment and joy.  I just love this project. To create your own using some of Lisa Kettell Designs products visit the artfire shop at:

Stay tuned for more Design Team projects this week!


Saturday, April 05, 2014

Peeps Wands

Do you know what time of year it is? Its peeps time. Here is another fun peeps project I created. This time I used Rit Dye for the lace ribbon and pom poms, paper straws and pink bunny peeps. A great recycled project using left over ribbon, paper straws and peeps. Perfect for all ages. Now let's get started.

Materials for the Decorating:
  • Pink bunny peeps, Peeps and Company
  • Paper straws
  • Pom poms
  • Ornate pearl stick pins, Lisa Kettell Designs
  • Tools/Glue: hot glue gun, hot glue sticks, scissors

Materials for the Dye:
  • Liquid Dye, Petal Pink, Rit Dye
  • White lace trim or ribbon, Joanne's Fabric and Craft Store
  • Plastic table cover
  • Paper towels or old towel
  • Measuring spoon, measuring cup
  • Large glass or plastic bowl

Directions to Dye the Lace and Pom poms:

  1. Prep your surface. Lay plastic table cover on the surface you will working over. Put on your rubber or latex gloves.
  2. Mix 2 tablespoons Rit liquid dye petal pink with 1 1/2 cups hot water in a plastic, or metal bowl and stir. Let steep for 20 minutes. For good hot water, heat some in the microwave in a glass bowl for 2 minutes.
  3. Place lace ribbon and light color pom pom in the liquid dye solution, let set for 5-10 minutes stirring occasionally. Remove the dyed ribbon when desired color is achieved and place onto a foil pan. Let dry. Reserve your remaining mixture for more dying by pouring into a glass jar or container, keep sealed

Directions To make Peeps Wands: 
  1. Push a paper straw into the bottom end of a pink bunny peep, secure in place with hot glue or glue of choice. Attach a pom pom to the back of the peep, tilting to the left side, secure with hot glue.
  2. Cut a piece of the dyed lace ribbon about 12 inches and tie around the bottom of the peep ( at the top of the wand). Then push in a pearl stick pin into the top center of the peep.

  • Fill in any white areas of the peep with a decaupage medium mixed with petal pink Rit dye and add pinkish sand to finish. 
  • Try adding sugary pink clear or German glitter on the peep.
  • Add a crepe paper skirt and other fun details to your peep wand.
To see the original project I created and to learn more about using Rit Dye visit my project link inside my Rit Studio at:


Friday, April 04, 2014

Peeps in a Box!

Peeps are marshmallow candies, sold in the United States and Canada, that are shaped into chicks, bunnies, and other animals.  They are produced by Just Born a candy manufacturer founded in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, by Russian immigrant Sam Born. In 1953, Just Born acquired the Rodda Candy Company and its marshmallow chick line, and replaced the process of hand-forming the   chicks with mass production.  

Soon Just Born, was considered the "largest marshmallow candy manufacturer in the world."   The yellow chicks were the original form of the candy, then new shapes other than the chicks were produced following a theme according to the season starting in the 1960s. Twenty years later, the Marshmallow Peeps Bunny was released as a popular year round shape of the candy.

I have been a long time fan of the kitschy sweet bunny peeps.  My Mom and Grandma would put edible German Easter Candy grass in a basket and fill it with peeps and other Easter treats usually from Woolworths or Newberrys Dept. Stores. 

As an artist and advid recycler I save everthing and try to reuse what I have in my projects.  Recently I came across a box filled with un-opened packages of peeps from last year.  I remembered buying them on clearance for 25 cents a box.  The pink bunnies are so cute and asking to be saved from snack time.  Each one looking like one of the chartacters from my art stories.  I knew they would fit in perfectly with my Easter projects.

The first in the series of projects is called "Peeps in a Box."  For this project I recycled last years peeps and their box  and turned them into a fun Spring assemblage.  I lined the peeps box with scrapbook papers, peeps, paper straws and shredded paper grass.  This project is perfect to do with your kids, with friends or yourself.  It teaches recycling, initiates crafting, and rings in the Easter holiday.  Best part of this project is you can make it within 15-20 minutes.

  • 1 box of pink bunny peeps
  • Pink pom poms 
  • Scrapbook paper 
  • Scrapbook embellishments
  • Shredded paper grass, pink
  • Paper straws, pink/white striped 
  • Pink acrylic paint
  • Tools/Glue: scissors, hot glue gun, hot glue sticks
  • Other: fabric spray stiffner, ribbons, wire ribbon, mini plastic chicks, wax paper

  1. Remove the pink bunny peeps from box, separate from each other.
  2. Place the peeps on wax paper and spray with fabric stiffner, let dry. This helps harden the peeps. For this project I used last years hardened peeps. 
  3. Paint over any white areas of the peeps with pink acrylic paint, let dry.
  4. Glue pink pom pom to the back of the peep, tilting to the left.
  5. Measure the inside of the peeps box and cut a piece of scrapbook paper to fit inside it, ahere with hot glue ot glue of choice.
  6. Line the bottom of the peeps box with shredded pink paper grass, secure with hot glue or clue of choice.
  7. Decorate the box with additional scrapbook paper embellishments, wire ribbon, paper straws, and peeps.

  • You can air dry the peeps by cutting open the box and letting the air hit them for a few days or a week.
  • Try photo copying your peeps and print onto sturdy weight paper and use them in place of the real peeps.
  • You can use clay, paper mache or paper to make your own peeps. Coat the finished clay peeps in paint, mod podge and pink sand. There are some bunny type molds you can use to fill with plaster of paris for another version of the bunnies.
Company Products Used:

  • I used Crate Paper for the kitschy tag cut outs, Clearsnap/Colorbox for the Party cut out and EK Success for the background Scrapbook paper in this project. I bought mine at ACMoore.
  • I used pink acrylic paint from Plaid.
  • Orange pom poms were dyed with petal pink and fuschia Rit Liquid Dye
  • The thin shredded pink paper was from the dollar store.
  • I used white floral wire to make my banner.
  • The paper straws are from Michaels. 

Bunny peeps come in others colors besides pink. Blue, purple, and yellow are some of the other colors they come in.  This project can be made using any color or variety of peeps. 

I will be posting 4 peeps projects over the next few days to get you inspired to recycled and have fun using peeps.

 For more info on peeps visit:

To purchase items from my store visit:

Monday, March 24, 2014

Deer Queen Tassel Necklace

Tassel jewelry is quite the trend these days. Starting last year they made a come back in fashion. This year they are setting an even bigger trend. With top fashion chains incorporating more handmade couture and animal themes, I'm excited to start doing the same. Last night I decided to create a tassel necklace using a discarded necklace, charms, rhinestones and a tassel. But the tassel was creamy white. No need to fear with a mix of pearl grey and left over aquamarine Rit Dye I had, the tassel would be dyed and a necklace would be made.

Here is the material list and directions so that you can create your own hand dyed tassel necklace.
To view my original post visit Rit Dye at:

For Dyeing The Tassel: 
  • Liquid Rit Dye: Aquamarine, Pearl Grey
  • White tassel
  • Measuring cup
  • Measuring spoons
  • 2 medium sized bowls (for dying and rinsing),
  • Paper towels
  • Plastic table cover
  • Rubber gloves
  • Tongs
  • Foil pan
  • Plastic spoon

For the Jewelry Making:
  • Jewelry chain
  • Deer pendant
  • Crown charm
  • Jump rings
  • Needle nose plier
  • 2 part epoxy glue

Directions To Dye The Tassels:
  1. Prep your surface. Lay plastic table cover on the surface you will working over. Put on your rubber or latex gloves.
  2. Mix 2 tablespoons Rit liquid dye in pearl grey and 1/2 tablespoon aquamarine with 1 1/2 cups hot water in a plastic, or metal bowl and stir. Let steep for 20 minutes. For good hot water, heat some in the microwave in a glass bowl for 2 minutes.
  3. Place tassel in the greyish green tinted dye solution, let set for 5 minutes stirring occasionally. Remove the dyed tassel when desired color is achieved and place onto a foil pan. Let dry. Reserve your remaining mixture for more dying by pouring into a glass jar or container, keep sealed.
 Directions To make Necklace:
  1. Prepare 2 part epoxy according to package directions. Coat the back of the deer pendant or pendant of choice with the epoxy and attach to the top of the dyed tassel. Let set for a few minutes.
  2. With a needle nose plier open a jump ring by slowing twisting one end away from you. Insert into the opening of the deer pendant, attach to the center of the jewelry chain. Close the jump ring.
  3. Cut a strip of rhinestone attach to the tassel just under the bottom of the pendant with more epoxy glue. Layer with a crown charm using more epoxy glue or a jump ring.
  • Try layering 3 tassels for a fuller necklace.
  • Mix and match Rit Dyes for more color possibilities.
  • Dip the end of the tassel into more dye for an ombre look. 
  • Use a store bought necklace that already has a pendant attached, add the tassel and additional findings.
Hope you enjoyed the project. For more of my projects using Rit Dye, visit 


Thursday, March 20, 2014

Mounted Toy Plaques

Come One, Come All to the Spring Circus Toy Ball....

Its the first day of Spring.  What does that mean? Nature waking up, longer days of sunlight, flowers sprouting, trees glistening and birds chirping. Spring is a time to clear out the old and ring in the new. Its this time of year that we plan for the warm days of summer.

Spring is also the start of circus and carnival season which lasts till the end of November.  The calliope music, the kettle corn, candy apples and the big top. Ornate performers, glowing amusements and boardwalk adventures are all waiting for us this coming months.

As a lover of circus themes and the author behind: "Altered Art Circus", Quarry Books, Lisa Kettell, I am preparing for a new season of adventure.  To kick off the season I have created some new projects to share with you.  One of the projects is called: "Mounted Toy Plaques"and was inspired by a project in my book, "Altered Art Circus".  Which involved recycling discarded plastic animal toys.

For this piece I recycled a small plastic animal toy, mounted it on scrapbook covered wood craft circle, and embellished.  Its really simple to do and I will tell you how.

  • Small plastic toy animals
  • Medium sized wood craft circle
  • Medium sized scrapbook embellishment frame
  • Scrapbook paper
  • Crepe paper
  • Glitter
  • Glues: hot glue, craft glue
  • Tools: hot glue gun, hot heat tool, scissors
  • ( I used the hot marks tool kit w/ hot knife point by Walnut Hollow) 


  1. Layer the medium sized wood craft circle with scrapbook paper, secure in place with craft glue.
  2. Line the medium sized scrapbook embellishment frame onto the scrapbook lined wood craft circle.
  3. Using the hot knife point with the hot tool, cut the plastic animal toy in half. Then hot glue to the center of the wood craft circle.
  4. Decorate the mounted plastic animal with crepe paper, a paper hat, glitter and trims.


  1. Use a piece of chipboard or cut a circle from a discard piece of cardboard or box.
  2. Use scrapbook borders or trim such as pom pom in place of the frame.
  3. Add tags, and additional embellishments to the piece.
  4. Create several, connect with ribbon for a banner or small swag.
  5. Make larger mounted plaques using larger plastic toy animals mounted on larger backgrounds such as round frames and book covers.
  6. Instead of plastic animals, make one out of clay or layer an image.
  7. All discarded plastic toys or doll heads will work as well.

To purchase small plastic toys for $3.95 for a bundle visit my artfire store: 

If they sell out, email me at for a reserved listing.