Here Come the Ladybugs!

So I was able to spend a nice chunk of time in the garden yesterday morning.  While the doggies occupied themselves with a wide variety of activities – prancingchasingbarkingsniffinglaying – I did a whole bunch o’ weeding (very therapeutic), got some grafted tomatoes in the ground as well as a few agastache that I had started from seed.  But much of that morning was spent just looking, and don’t laugh – I know it sounds hokey pokey – but I actually wait for the seedlings to tell me where they want to go in the ground, and I swear, they speak to me lol!  I joke, but seriously, really looking, contemplating how the sun will fall throughout the day, what kind of microclimates I can create to help these babies thrive, all of these activities are in a sense, a way of listening, and I find them hugely satisfying.

While weeding, I noticed a wonderful change in the garden – the ladybugs have arrived.  And a lot of them.  This news made me want to jump for joy, because those critters will munch up all the nasty aphids that I’ve been having to smoosh by hand for the past several weeks.  And boy, are these insects just the most spectacular shade of red or WHAT?  Mmm mmm mmm!   I think I love them just as much as I love my earthworms.

Anyway, I came inside and crafted this grungy card.


Chock full of the organic effects I so dearly love, and embellished using one of my new Sizzix Sizzlits, the Washer Border Die, as well as one of my older well-used dies, the Sizzix Movers and Shapers Mini Butterflies Set.  Wanna see how it all came together?  First I misted a sturdy piece of Bristol Vellum with some of my favorite mists.  Then I scrunched up some plastic wrap on top and let it dry.  This was the result.


Whoa mamma!  I am having so much fun with this technique – look at how the colors mix and don’t mix!  Next, I wrinkled my paper, smoothed it out, sanded the ridges a bit, and selectively applied more ink on some ridges.


Next, I did some stamping with a great Hampton Art Woodblock stamp.


Then, using my current adhesive of choice, Ranger Glue ‘N Seal, I adhered a portion of a Washer Border die-cut that had been misted as well.  The card was asking for more mist, so I doused it with a beautiful gold.


Lovely abstract patterns and textures in this die.  Very very versatile.


I stamped some insects using a new Hampton Art/ 7 Gypsies set that contains a great variety of delicate insects.  As a final step, I added my vascular hot glue effects, first laying down the glue.


Misting it.


After it dried, I added Clearsnap Mix’d Media Inx on top of the hot glue.  The butterfly was adhered using pop dots.


** I’ve had a lot of followers ask me about drying time on my hot glue effect.  It takes a long time, folks.  You can speed it up with a heat tool, you can also paint the hot glue with gesso or other fast drying pigment before adding the Inx.  You can also use a completely different choice of media than I do.  I have done this with Painter’s Pens as well, which dry very fast. But so far, I have found the Inx to go on most luxuriously and give me the look I want, so I don’t mind waiting a few days once my project is done, then spraying with fixative.

Here are some more details.


I tried to preserve some areas with the plastic wrap effect.  Aren’t those ladybugs neat?


A trail of ants.


This is where all the textures converge.  Hope you enjoyed my project!


Sizzix – Washer Border Sizzlit, Movers and Shapers Mini Butterflies SetClearsnap – Gold Glow and Black Velvet SMOOCH Spritzes
Tattered Angels – Sea Glass Glimmer Mist
Tim Holtz – Salty Ocean Distress Ink
Hampton Art/ 7 Gypsies – PS0673 Distressed Background Woodblock Stamp, IC0223 A Bug’s Life Cling Stamp Set, IC0148 Abundance Cling Stamp Set
Hampton Art/ Art Warehouse – PS0712 Speckle BackgroundWoodblock Stamp
Tsukineko – Black Stazon Ink
Ranger – Glue ‘N Seal
Strathmore – Bristol Vellum

10 thoughts on “Here Come the Ladybugs!

  1. So organic. Just makes me happy to look at it. This combines so many of the techniques you have been showing us recently; love that. And I was right, it’s the washer sizzlits die. Yay! Thanks, have a great day.

  2. Another great project. I do have a question though on your “Seeds” video. After applying the yellow gellatoes did you let the piece dry before adding the purple? I tried it and didn’t wait and the colors became muddy….Back to the drawing board! lol

  3. Oh Miss Vivian your gardening does sound very magical for you out there communicating with nature, it sound like fine stuff to me, and very sensible even though I’m not a gardener. I don’t get the loving of the worms but that okay..:):)
    I too love this technique, I do that when I make my inked watercolor papers, I put the wrap over the paper scrunch it and leave it to dry, I love how it looks like marble and adds lots of texture, yes one of my favs too. I love that stamp, look lie water drops, thank you so much I think I will make a stamp like yours, well I’m gonna try, love the drops..
    Adding the die cuts,must feel wonderful underf the fingers 🙂 The glue is feaken fantastic, the little creatures are too kool, and where they converge, it looks like they are going under the die cuts, how kool it that. Magical I say:):). Thanks for sharing all of this is gets me all atwitter, Have a wonderful creative week…

  4. Just another winner from a fantastic artist! Thank you so much for not only the art
    work but your delightful description of your garden adventures! I love it because I
    am a semi invalid and can’t go into the garden the way I could before. Keep the adventures coming along with the inspirational art work.

  5. This is SUCH an amazing project, Vivian! Absolutely love your artsy techniques and love the finished look!

  6. Pingback: Sizzix Blog | The Start of Something You

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