Monday, September 29, 2014


“Isn't it mysterious to begin a new journal like this? I can run my fingers through the fresh clean pages but I cannot guess what the writing on them will be.” 

I recently had a little fun creating some journal pages for a swap, A Journal of Nature's Blessings, hosted by Karla of Karla's Cottage.  Participants were to make 6 signatures, the base being 8 1/2 in. x 11 in. folded in half to make four layouts per signature.  At least half of the journal pages were to be usable for the recipient to write, sketch, or collect/store special mementos. I used a series of pullouts, hidden journal note/sketch books, tags, and pockets to provide plenty of recording and storing space.  Inspiration for the page designs were to be our interpretation of nature's blessings.

My main ingredient for all my pages was glitter, lots and lots and lots of glitter, a whole container of glitter!  I was in a glitter kind of mood.  If you have followed my blog for very long and like to play "I Spy" you might see tidbits of past projects, supply stashes I made up, even tags or pages from my art journal recycled into the nature journal pages.  For instance on the layout below you might spy hand dyed/ stamped ribbons as well as skirts and wings from a fairy cupcake topper class I did a way back when.

Page inspiration:  Watching my grandchildren chase butterflies and pick dandelions, the awe, the wonder, and the joy of simple natural pleasures.

Page inspiration:  I spent the summer watching a robin family build a nest in the wisteria bush just outside my studio window, three tiny eggs rested in the nest and it was pure delight to watch the little hatch-lings feed, chirp, grow downy little feathers and finally gain their independence and leave the nest. 

Page inspiration:  Seasonal changes, autumn and winter, crisp frosty autumn mornings and glimmer snow dusted winter days, colorful foliage and falling snowflakes, the twitter of birds at the feeders.

Page inspiration:  Purple cone flowers and the large lilac bush blooming in my grandmothers garden where butterflies collect in profusion sipping natures nectar.

Page inspiration:  A color filled botanical garden stroll where every flower imaginable bloomed in profusion and the air was punctuated with bird song.

Page inspiration:  A little yellow warbler I photographed while strolling down a country lane, yellow sunshine and flowers spilling into the roadside, the sparkle of water from the creek crossing, patches of cool leafy green shade that provided resting places to admire the brilliant blue sky.

Page inspiration:  Cool ocean tones of blues, greens, and tans that mimic surf, sky, and sand...vacation at the shore where collecting shells, sending post cards, and watching seagulls sail are a few of my favorite past times. 

Page inspiration:  An abandoned fallen nest I found over the summer with three tiny eggs in it, I watched it for days to see if the mother bird would return but sadly she did not.  I collected the little natural wonder and saved it.

Page inspiration:  A colorful quilt patch that reminded me very much of the paper pattern, a quilt that was carried on many childhood picnics where clover chains were made and worn as jewelry, tasty treats were consumed, and softly slipping into naps on my favorite flower patch while listening to the cadence of my grandmothers voice as she told the cousins and I stories.  Sweet memories.

Page inspiration:  The simple pleasure of a walk in nature exploring, observing, collecting, something I have done since childhood.

Page inspiration:  Pockets and pictures, it seems I never set out to explore my natural surroundings without a handy pocket or a means of snapping a photo.  My pockets fill with little tidbits especially found feathers and I snap happily at whatever catches my eye.  I have recently framed some of my nature art to decorate my home.

Page inspiration:  The Victorians, during the Victorian era there was a surge of artistic representation of the natural world.  They had an entire language and symbolism of flowers, much poetry of that era reflects upon nature, painters created pastoral scenes, there was an emotional attachment to the things of nature.  Quaint children, chubby cherubs, and dancing fairies frolicking in natural settings were often depicted on fashionable greeting or calling cards.  The study of natural science became in vogue, private collections of natural specimens became popular, quite observation, recording and/or painting or drawing of observations resulted in nature journals. 

I can't wait to receive my swap pages in return!
I hope you all enjoy a fantastic week.



JD/ Jill said...

What lovely journal pages...I'm partcial to the blue pages and birds...You have such a gift for doing these. Thanks for sharing.

Lorrie said...

Your journal pages really reflect your style and the enjoyment you had from creating them. Each one is a piece of artwork in itself.

Vee said...

Oh my! Each page is a work of art. Exquisite...

bobbie said...

I had thought about you when Karla first posted about her swap ~
You've done (as usual) a beautiful job!!

Magpie's Mumblings said...

So much to see in each one of these pages. Lucky swap recipients to get these!

KittyAnnArt said...

Such lovely creations! I LOVE glitter :D such a fun embellishment. Each page is a mini masterpiece, the care that went into the making is evident, would like to try my hand at such a project.

Thank you for the links to Karla's website, Ani in Wilmington NC.

lynn said...

Just absolutely positively gorgeously beautiful work you do!

MISS PEACH ~(^.^)~ said...

thank you Sandy for sharing your amazing works of heART in your post....I would be thrilled if one of your pages would come to rest in my book...I can dream...
many blessings from a longtime follower...Karla J.

Dorthe said...

Dear Sandy, what beautiful and nature romantic book pages you created from Karla`s tutorial. It looks so wonderful with your many pages filled with gorgeous papers , flowers, and bits and pieces. I love what you did, with all the glitter, and lovely ribbons and cotouts.
Some swappers will be very happy to recieve your pages.
Thank you for the link to Karla`s tutorial, seeing this amazing nature pages, I just had to jump to her shop and purchase the tut.
Hugs from Dorthe

ekewin said...

oh i hope I get one of your pages in my swap book...:)

Judys Fabrications said...

Wow, what a stunner this journal is.I'm a new follower!
Thanks for sharing this gorgeousness.

BethBoothe said...

Dear Sandy,
My name is Beth Boothe and I live in OK.
I am one of the "Lucky Recipients" to receive some of your BEAUTIFUL pages in my "Nature's Blessings" journal!!!!!!!
I LOVE the book, but your pages definitely stand out!
You couldn't have described me any better as if you knew me with your Blue inspirations, beautiful sea shells, calming oceans and my love for all these beautiful Blessings!
I will treasure this book!

rivergardenstudio said...

I love your pages and reading about what inspired you. Beautiful work!

BethBoothe said...

Hello Sandy,
My name is Beth Boothe and I live in Durant, OK (but a True Tennessean!)
I just want to let you know that I was a participant in Karla's "Nature's Blessings" journal. I received my Journal and was so amazed at the beautiful artwork! The pages that stand out so beautifully are your pages!!!!! I think I rec the ones exactly meant for me, as I LOVE the colors and the warmth of their textures. Your inspirations describe me perfectly as I feel at peace and connected with GOD's beautiful blessings mostly at the beach.
Thank you for your hard work and dedication to such a beautiful project!

Sharon Higgins said...

Beautiful works of art. I am in awe!
Your art truly reflects your love of nature, and I love how each page tells a beautiful story. Thank you for sharing.

Createology said...

Sandy your pages and descriptions are Breathtakingly Beautiful. Every page and detail adds to the joy of creating a truly magical journal. Creative Nature's Blessings Bliss Dear... said...

Your pages were beyond delightful! I loved them. Thanks so much for being a part of it.

Wendy said...

These journal pages are sublime and would be so wonderful to write your most inner thoughts and reflection down in them...your pages are truly wonderful...

JD/ Jill said...

Sandy, I wanted to thank you again, and tell you that I posted a shout out to you in my blog...

suziqu's thread works said...

Oh my goodness Sandy what a beautiful job you have done on each and every page. Full of inspiration here. I just might have to purchase this one too.
I can tell you so enjoyed creating these pages.
Hugs to you from Downunder,

Marrianna said...

I did not participate in the swap because I didn't know about it. Maybe I would have tried, really tried, to create some lovely pages if I had actually joined the swap. Yours are so delightful and give me a lot of encouragement to try this for myself. I purchased Karla's online class to make the actual book and am hoping 2015 will be my year to "find my artistic voice" and create beautiful books like these. Thank you so much for sharing.

One of these days, I'll do a blog post about bookmaking and am hoping to add links to beautiful blogs like yours. I'm creating a list of what I would like to do when I'm not working so much at my part-time job. Top of the list is to ask in prayer and meditation for daily direction for this next part of my journey - retirement, finally, at age 70+. It really can happen if I am willing and trust in God to guide me off the couch and into the studio.

Thank you so much for this wonderful blog post and the one you just wrote about finding your voice. I'm grateful I read your post this morning. It's very inspiring for me at this time in my life.


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