Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

How To Tuesday: Playing Card Mini-Journal

  • Old playing cards
  • Plain copy paper or notebook paper
  • Cardstock scrap
  • Rubber cement
  • Ruler
  • Binder Clips (you will need 3, not shown in materials picture)

Step 1: Measure your playing cards as closely as you can.  You will want an accurate measure because you do not want your pages to stick out from under the playing card cover.  Measure and mark your plain paper and cut precisely.

Step 2: Stack the plain paper and tap the edges against a hard surface to line up the edges.  Once the edges are lined up, add the front and back to your mini-journal.  Next, clip three sides (not the top!) with the binder clips.

Step 3:  Coat the top edge of your paper stack with the rubber cement.  Give the top a couple of coats of rubber cement.

Step 4:  Cut your scrap cardstock to fit the top width of your mini-journal.  It might be helpful to cut the cardstock wider than the journal then trim off excess.  Coat the cardstock with rubber cement then place your mini-journal (rubber cement side down) on the cardstock.

Step 5:  Let the project dry and trim any excess pages or cardstock.

Monday, August 29, 2011

New Products!

Here are some new products from DeLorenzo Arts and Crafts:



The burlap wreaths are hand made and would do wonders to beautify any entrance or room of the house.  Also, the notecards are super cute and would put a smile on the face of any recipient.

I created a new coupon code for my followers-BLOGFOLLOWER gets a 20% discount!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Feedback Friday: Did you take an art class in school?

Did you take an art class in school?  In college?  If so, I want to hear about it!  What did you like about it?  What was your favorite project you worked on?

I am a strong supporter of arts education and took several art classes in school.  My favorite class was a ceramics course I took in high school.  I still have several of my pieces!  It was super fun getting my hands dirty in the clay and painting the projects to create gifts, vases, pots, and bowls.  Reminiscing on all the fun I had, I might need to invest in a pottery wheel and kiln....

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Art galleries are a win-win-win

I remember passing by the art gallery on my alma mater’s campus everyday on my way to undergraduate psychology classes.  The gallery changed exhibits every so often, but it always intrigued and invited the wayward student and serious artist for a visit.  This particular gallery was a single large room but was often filled with color, lines, artifacts and other mediums.   In addition to being a great public relations story, the gallery oftentimes made the visitor a literal piece of the work. 
Art galleries on college campuses are a win-win-win for the artist, college, and the community.  These galleries are often free and open to the public and are a great venue for gatherings, dates, and afternoon strolls.  Featured artists often get increased exposure due to their participation in gallery showings.  College campuses benefit from drawing different populations of individuals to the campus.  Students on these campuses benefit from the connection to the arts community and from having a campus location as an aesthetic lounge between classes.  Communities benefit from the presence of a cultural hot spot and gathering place for like-minded individuals.    With rotating exhibits, gallery shows, and other fun, free events, these campus housed art museums are great resources for all involved. 
To support initiatives and links to arts education, art galleries housed at institutions of higher education are largely a natural relationship between the arts community and universities.  Sometimes, new exhibits or works housed on a campus stir the proverbial pot as they instigate controversy.  These works sometimes spark disagreement thus engaging students, the community, and faculty members to converse about the meaning of the art.  This sort of exchange is at the heart of cultural community and learning. 
Art galleries on campuses and as parts of public, community gathering spots are wonderful ways to engage citizens and increase cultural awareness and are rare win-win-win opportunities.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

DeLorenzo Arts and Crafts Review and Giveaway-Put A Little Umbrella in Your Drink

DeLorenzo Arts and Crafts on Etsy has been featured in a blog review and giveaway! 

Check out Put A Little Umbrella in Your Drink for the review and giveaway.

A big thank you to Lesli for the kind review!  The giveaway ends September 7, 2011.

Wordless Worldly Wednesday

This is the carousel in front of the Opera House in Avignon, France.  So cute, so whimsical...

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

How To Tuesday: Hand Tied Wreath

  • Metal hanger
  • Stiff cloth (in any color; feel free to mix and match!)
  • Scissors
  • Hairspray

Step 1: Pull and bend the metal hanger into a rough circle.  You may need to unhook the hook part of the hanger to incorporate it into the circle.  Feel free to keep the hook for ease of hanging the wreath.

Step 2:  Cut your fabric into strips.  My strips were roughly 1" to 1 1/2" wide and 5"-7" long.  Your strips do not have to be exact; as a matter of fact, the rougher the strips, the more unique the wreath!

Step 3:  Tie the fabric strips onto the hanger.  Be sure to tie them tightly and push them close together.  The closer the knots are on the hanger loop, the fuller your wreath will appear.

Step 4:  When all your strips are tied on the wreath, or when your loop is tight and full, lightly spray your wreath with hairspray to avoid frazzled ends.


Friday, August 19, 2011

Feedback Friday: Have you ever created a Treasury List?

Feedback Friday: Have you ever created a Treasury List on

If you have, I would love to see it!  Post a link to your Treasuries or your favorite treasuries in the comments section. 

Here is one of mine and one of my favorites.

Warning: Treasury building is extremely addicting!  Do not have too much fun! 

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Featured Artist: Adnascent Photography

I have always been a fan of photography; I have dabbled with trying to take some artistic, abstract pictures but cannot touch the skill of some professionals.  I recently had the opportunity to speak with one of my favorite photographers, George, at Adnascent Photography.  It is obvious George has an eye for beautiful images and a sense for making the mundane interesting.

Q: How did you get interested in photography?
A: In high school, several years ago, I saw a Polaroid digital camera at a local Wal-Mart and impulsively bought it.  I was also prone to walks along the Ohio River in the small town that I lived in and found myself carrying the camera with me.  I was surprised how easy it is to capture a beautiful moment with your eyes and translating into another medium such as photographs.  I was hooked.
Q: How long have you seriously been taking photographs?
A: About seven years but have been taking pictures longer.
Q: What are your favorite subjects of your photographs?
A: I like to photography places that feel strange and isolated; something that does not have an apparent meaning but evokes an emotion.  I am inspired by music, lots of music.  I constantly listen to music.  The Ghostly International label is by far my favorite.  Did I mention I am always listening to music?
Q: What have been some of your favorite projects that you have worked on?
A: I love to take pictures of my dad: his beard, his pipe, his hands.  Also, I love to take abstract pictures of Chicago: the streets, buildings, skyline.  I also very much enjoy taking pictures with my Fujifilm point and shoot film camera because I worry more about the picture I am taking rather than image quality.
Q: They still make film?
A: (laughs) Yeah, it is sad that its use is decreasing because it is so organic.
Q:  Do you have any advice for amateur artists?
A: To find something that inspires you that you do not fully understand because it will challenge you to keep pursuing your art.
Q: If you could be a color, what color would you be and why?
A: Black because I used to go to a peat bog in the middle of the night where it was completely dark and I could not see anything and I could open my mind.  It was complete freedom.
A huge thanks to George for his time and for sharing his art.  Check out Adnascent Photography at 

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Wordless Worldly Wednesday

My favorite red things in London!

My husband and I went to London, England last spring for a vacation and had a wonderful time (especially since they speak English)!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

How To Tuesday: Ink Blot Notecards

If you enjoy abstract looking flowers, faces, or shapes that are outlined in a black ink, then this craft is right up your alley.  Ink blot pieces are very easy to make and require little artistic ability.  Be prepared to mess up the first few attempts, but once you master the flow and "drawing" with the ink, this craft is fast and fun!

  • Artists Ink
  • Eyedropper (or dropper from the artist ink bottle)
  • Paper (watercolor, acrylic or cardstock paper works best)
  • Toilet Paper (divided into strips 2-4 squares long)
  • Newspaper for work space
  • Gloves
Step 1: Spread newspaper to protect the surface you are working on.  Lay your paper on top of the newspaper.

Step 2:  Fill the dropper with ink from the bottle and "draw" a picture.  Lightly squeeze the dropper to release ink as you "draw."

Step 3:  Quickly lay the toilet paper on top of the wet ink and quickly pull it off again.  The toilet paper will absorb some of the ink and scatter some of the ink for an abstract effect.

Step 4:  Let your new little masterpiece dry completely before you add colors.

If you like this, you may like some of the flat notecards in my Etsy shop!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Daler-Rowney Acrylic Artists Ink-Product Review

Daler Rowney Acrylic Artists Ink

I recently discovered the fun of creating ink blot abstract art pieces on Etsy and decided to try my own.  I headed to my local art supply store (Blick Art Materials-my new favorite store!) to find some acrylic ink.  I decided to purchase Daler-Rowney FW Acrylic Water-Resistant Artists Ink in Black.  Blick Art Materials had a great selection of Daler-Rowney ink colors in one fluid ounce bottles.  There are water-resistant colors and a beautiful selection of pearlescent liquid acyclic inks.  So I headed home, brand new ink and inspiration in hand!

I was very, very impressed with the ink flow from the dropper included in the bottle.  The dropper was very comfortable in my hand and the ink flow was smooth.  The dropper even features a small curve at the end; I assume this design is to avoid smudging your artwork after you dispense the ink.  This is a super important feature for me, because I am left-handed and seem to smear most everything. 

I was happy to discover, at the end of my ink blotting extravaganza, that I did not have ink smudges on the outsides of my hands as I usually do with markers or chalks.  The color of the ink was vibrant and strong.  The ink color did not fade when dry, and the product dried fairly quickly.

I will definitely purchase Daler-Rowney inks again and look forward to the opportunity to venture out to try new colors.  Actually, I may head out to buy some more right now...

Stay tuned for How-To Tuesday's post featuring Daler-Rowney Acrylic Inks!

*Note: I did not receive any free samples or compensation for this post.  My opinions are my own and are unbiased.  I would, however, welcome any products in exchange for a review on this blog.  I am just saying.

Friday, August 12, 2011

SOOC Saturday!

So I stumbled upon this great idea from Marvelous Mommy's blog.  It is a link up of unedited photos.  Make sure you check out all the photos.  Here is my contribution:

I took this picture in Pfaffenweiler, Germany.  I thought it was a beautiful door surrounded by flowers; this photo is unedited!

Friday Feedback-Do you have an Etsy shop?

Do you have a shop on Etsy?  If so, share it!  What is your shop name, your favorite items, and/or your treasury?

If not, have you ever visited Etsy?  What are some of your favorite things on the site?  Do you have any favorite shops?

If so, I want to hear about it!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Arts Education is vital to develop student potential

A local school system in my area recently revitalized musical instrument teaching in elementary schools for this next academic year.  Programs are already established in local high schools.  The school system has even introduced a lease program for students to borrow instruments if elementary students cannot afford to buy new or used.  I, for one, am a large supporter of this initiative. 
I am a strong believer that arts education (music, fine arts, dance, etc…) is extremely important for students.  Studies show music education has a positive impact on academic performance.  Not to toot my own horn (pun intended!), but I participated in band in middle school and performed very well academically.  Learning how to play an instrument teaches a student to practice to produce results and develop discipline.  In addition, students get a sense of belonging to a club, organization or academic program.  When I was in middle school, practicing my flute became a way for me to develop time management.  I knew I had to practice for thirty minutes then do homework.  I sometimes used practicing my flute as a study break for academic homework as well. 
The National Art Education Association states that arts education fulfills human potential and promotes global understanding.  Arts education is a wonderful way for students to express themselves through music, painting, ceramics, drawing, dancing, and many other forms.  Art is a wonderful way for students to develop their potential and feel good about themselves.  Art classes are a break from the mundane academic lectures, and these courses stimulate different parts of the brain.  This stimulation helps students think differently and exercises their cognitive and artistic abilities to develop their potential.
Arts education is vital to a student’s academic experience.  From stimulating the brain to having fun creating beautiful pieces, art is a great way for students to challenge themselves in order to develop their potential.    

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

I was at the right place, at the right time:

What a way to start my morning!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

How-To Tuesday: Folded Accordion Flowers

If you have visited my Etsy shop (DeLorenzo Art) then you have surely noticed that I love folded, paper flowers!  I love to make them out of any patterned paper, maps, book print, or any kind of paper you can fold.  Mixing and matching papers for an unique bouquet is rewarding and fun-try it!

This is how I make the little masterpieces:

Step 1: Select any kind of paper you can fold into a small accordion.  Cut each sheet of paper into strips 1/2" to 1" wide.

Step 2:  Begin at one end of the strip and fold the paper, accordion style, with 1/4" to 1/2" pleats. 

Step 3:  Secure one end of your folded strip with the other end to create a continuous loop.  The pattern should match up; in other words, make sure your folded strip is not twisted when you secure the ends. 
Step 4:  Now comes the tricky part which takes a little bit of practice and patience.  Fold one side of your loop inward, and push the loop inward, on a flat surface to create a round, folded flower.
Step 5:  Secure the folded flower in the middle of the piece (glue or a hot glue gun works best) and hold until the glue sets.  This part can be a little frustrating because the folds want to force the flower to pop back into a loop; you can do it!
Step 6: Hold the flower's shape until the glue is set and Voila!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Recollections Fashionably Chic Paper Pad-Product Review

Recollections Fashionably Chic Paper Pad

I love this paper!  This pad of paper features 180 sheets of beautifully patterned paper.  The sheets measure 12"x12" and are one sided.  The pad features six colors (blue, green, brown, yellow, red/pink, and purple).  There are sixty different patterns and three sheets per pattern.

The paper patterns range from large flowers on a colored background to polka dots and stripes.  The pages are ever so slightly washed out in the middle and get darker toward the edges.  My favorites are the damask style patterned papers which feature a white print on the chic colored background. 

I use this paper for my folded accordion flowers (see tomorrow's How-To Tuesday post!).  The paper is not cardstock so it is thinner and easier to fold.  I also love to use this paper in my card crafting.  With the variety of patterns and colors, I can mix and match and still have a simply, fashionably chic craft piece.  The pages are easy to remove which is great for me because I tend to rip other paper pads and lose much of the page. 

Stay tuned for How-To Tuesday's post featuring Recollections Fashionably Chic Paper in yellow damask!

*Note: I did not receive any free samples or compensation for this post.  My opinions are my own and are unbiased.  I would, however, welcome any products in exchange for a review on this blog.  I am just saying.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Friday Feedback-Are you an artist?

Are you an artist?  Do you craft?

If so, I want to hear about it!  Share what you like to create, what mediums you like, and whatever else!

This is your chance to give yourself a pat on the back.  What you create is beautiful.  Just the act of creating art is a wonderful thing, so share it!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

DeLorenzo Art-My Etsy Shop!

Introducing....DeLorenzo Art

Handcrafted cards, paintings, and more for any occasion or decorating whim. From Christmas cards to blank notes, this shop features a variety of paper crafts for someone looking for handmade goods. Original floral inspired artworks are produced in acrylic medium in a variety of sizes. This shop also features a range of other crafts and finds for the casual decorator or sentiment sender. Works are produced in Evansville, Indiana. I can personalize or custom make almost anything in this shop if what you are looking for is not quite here.
Paper Crafts: I have a selection of blank greeting cards for special occasions, "thank yous," and more.  Some cards are made with a variety of paper patterns while others are hand pained or inked.  There is also a variety of Christmas cards and holiday gift wrapping.  Also in this shop section are a selection of folded flower art pieces.  These framed folded flower pieces are perfect for a desk, bedside table, or any room of the house for a little extra decorating accent.
Paintings:  I love painting with acrylics!  In this shop section are some of my paintings inspired by nature, flowers, and cool colors.  These paintings are sure to brighten any bland wall or empty space.
Photographs:  The prints in this section are from a variety of places from my travels to London, France, Germany, and Switzerland.  These prints are available in a wide variety of sizes and can be shipped fairly quickly.
Here are some of my favorite items in my shop:

Please feel free to take a look around, tag some items as favorites, or create a treasury using some of these items.  As always, I welcome feedback and look forward to improving my store with your help and suggestions.