ask Rae


So many of you stop by each day to read, find creative inspiration and share in my art filled journey. I love the huge variety of questions I get asked and thought it might be fun to start answering some of the "most asked" queries here.


 Is there something you have been wanting to learn? Are you wondering what that tool is I use over and over again? Need an opinion on a new paint color before you hit the stores? Join me here in the studio each week and let's chat!  Leave me a comment here or email me using the contact form above and I will gladly add your question to mix! 

1. What kind of sewing machine do you use?

I started out with this machine it worked for me for several years. When I started stitching on more than just paper and fabric  decided to trade mine in on this Husqvarna mechanical machine. I love it because it is a true work horse. It is not digital or computerized although it does offer several stitch options. It weighs no less than a million pounds and I can stitch on everything from paper to leather with this machine. It is the best studio investment I have made in years. 

2.  What are you doing for a hobby right now?

Well everyone here knows I love to test the waters in just about every avenue of "making" there is. With that said I am always shifting gears and trying new things. I am 99.9% self taught in everything and I have a confession to make - I hate sitting reading the directions for anything. I usually (and sometimes fatally) dive in head first and just learn as I go. Right now I am teaching myself how to make rope bowls. I am loving the simple process, although there is a learning curve, much like with pottery, that involves knowing how to manipulate the piece as you go to get the desired shape. 

3.  What are you journaling right now?

Right now I am working every day on my Art Marks's Summer Challenge. (you can read more about this here) I love that allows me to create everyday because I am working small and keeping the time to a minimum. I think I may find it hard to work in a large scale journal again after these challenges. I mainly work with color and marks but also like to include bits of actual journaling via my vintage typewriter that usually speaks to what the page means to me via the prompt. 

a guest artist today

Karen_Gaunt GM Self Portrait.jpg


K A R E N  G A U N T

Welcome back to my guest artist Karen Gaunt. Not only is she adorable, but she is super talented as well. Her blog is full of color and happy thoughts and she is a huge cheerleader for all those that are new to the mixed media world. I love how she comes up with so many innovative ways to incorporate my stencils into her work. Be sure to watch her process video below to learn how to create this awesome custom washi tape using today's featured stencil - REPETITION, and the BOXY BLOOM™ STAMP SET.

Hello everyone! I’m so happy to be back on Rae’s blog to share another project with you using Rae’s gorgeous products! Today I am working with one of my favourites of Rae’s stencils, the Repetition Stencil. As you will see in the video it is very painty and well loved. Just how I like my stencils to be of course! I’m also using Rae’s Boxy Blooms™ stamps to make my own custom washi tape. 


Washi tape can be expensive and sometime's it's hard to find in my Irish neck of the woods for sure. By working on masking tape I can make my own custom designs with colors and stamps that I love. Not to mention my vast collection of Rae’s Stencils! I hope that you enjoy this tutorial and it inspires you to break out the masking tape and design your own washi tape! Happy making.

Thank you Karen for sharing your talents with us all today. I, for one, am in love with your use of collage, color and stenciling! Check back often for more of Karen's work to be featured here on my blog!

Karen is a mixed media artist with a passion for color and a soft spot for paint. She works in a
regular job full time and daydreams all day about the moment she can let loose in her journals in the evening. She's a mother as well and loves nothing more than creating with her daughter in their matching art journals. Karen believes that making Art is for everyone and loves to
encourage and inspire others to make. She loves to try new techniques and colors and believes
that there is no such thing as too many art journals

three things

1.marking today

...because I love mark-making

I never get tired of working in this little art marks journal. It all started with a little mark making challenge and the next thing you know I am hooked and just can't stop. If you want to see what I am talking about just hop over  here to see the new Summer Challenge.Work at your own pace and have lots of fun! Happy creating! 

2.printing today

...because she's lovin' it

Who knew that when she saw me mono printing she would be so fascinated? First she stood by quietly for a few minutes, then the questions started pouring out of her. I finally realized that I would make a better teacher of it by just letting her experiment herself. Little did I know I would be creating a mini mono printing monster!

3.beaching today

...because it's our favorite place

Pretty soon he will be headed off to D.C. and we won't have our weekly trips to the beach. It's just a short 30 minute ride away so whether we go for a few minutes or a full day we never tire of the view. We have so many memories of this place, the first of them beginning when he was just a wee little peanut. Where did the time go?

Art Marks™ Summer Challenge - Days 1-5

I love that this little Pocket Journal™ is so chunky and inviting. I just want to pick it up every time I see it in the studio. I can't believe I have not one, but two challenges fully completed now. I have said it before but I feel like I should say it again-  I know that stuff isn't supposed to matter, and it really doesn't, but there is something oddly satisfying about knowing I was able to stay on track.

With a third challenge well under way it makes me smile to know just what has formed around such a small act of sharing. One little hashtag has forged a community so huge that I continue to be amazed by it's breadth. Artists all over the world are connecting and uplifting one another. Just head over to Instagram or Facebook and search for the hashtag #artmarks30daychallenge to see just what I mean. Of course we all begin a little timid- afraid to share, listening instead to our worst critic, ourselves. But so many of us have been able to push that fear aside and embrace the heartfelt praise that exists out there in the form of our fellow artists. ART is a super powerful connector of people. 

art marks summer challenge day 1.jpg
art marks 28.jpg
art marks 29.jpg
let's keep sharing.jpg

I hope you all enjoyed this exercise in finding your own unique marks. I had so much fun watching you all share your creative work. Thank you for joining me in the little adventure. I will keep using the same hashtag and posting whenever I happen to create some happy marks. If you do the same, don't forget to use the hashtag below on Instagram so we can share with and inspire one another. If you missed the live challenge, it is never too late to join in! You can Get all the details HERE. If you didn't already, don't forget to grab  the free downloadable prompt list by clicking the button below. 

pretty pompom wreathe

I attached a piece of crochet work to mine. Layer your pompoms to give your wreathe added height. Add some pretty lettering to your plaque and enjoy! 

These are fast fun colorful crafts that will brighten anyone's day. Have fun and Happy Creating!

art marks - a 30 day summer challenge

art marks details.jpg


    I will be working in a tiny handmade POCKET JOURNAL™ 
    I hope to continue this exercise long after the 30 day challenge has ended
    This is more about the art and less about the rules- choose a window of time that works for you and the journal size you have selected and make the minutes counts.
    4 x 4 Journal - 1 page spread -Set timer for 10 minutes
    8.5 x 5.5 Journal - 1 page spread - Set timer for 15 minutes
    8.5 x 11 Journal - 1 page spread - Set timer for 20 minutes
    9 x 12 Journal - 1 page spread - Set timer for 30 minutes
    I will be sharing my art journal challenge pages on my blog, randomly. I want this to be less about keeping a schedule and more about creating. I will also be sharing on INSTAGRAM and FACEBOOK and welcome you to do the same. We have all experienced the joy of creating and sharing art with others, so let's spread the inspiration around!


    My marks may not be your marks. If you find yourself creating the same marks over and over again you have found YOUR OWN mark! 
    Remember no rules, just creating what love
    If you find a technique you love, use it! Do you gravitate toward a specific color combination? Those are your key colors. Love collage work? Then collage your way through the 30 days. Do what makes YOU happy! 
    Use my sample set of marks below to get you started. These are my favorite go to marks. Practice with them, alter then, and tweak them to make them your own. Trace them, cut them out or use them as a review sheet. It's up to you! Use the button below to download a sheet for yourself and a friend! It's FREE! 
ART MARKS CHALLENGE go to marks .jpg

I hope you will join me in this stress free, just have fun with art marks™ daily challenge! Happy Creating! 

recycled t-shirt bag

For someone with a big family, hand-me-downs are treasured around here. Most of the time someone outgrows something before it even has the chance to wear out. For that reason, I have tried to reclaim and recycle these bits of clothing at times. Today I am sharing an easy and super cute little reusable bag tutorial. All you need is a t-shirt (any size with do, but I used a youth medium for this one) and a good pair of scissors. Pretty embellishments are always optional. 

tshirt bag 4.jpg
tshirt bag 5.jpg
tshirt bag 8.jpg

This was so easy and I love the end result. I will definitely be making more of these! Don't have a t-shirt laying around? Check your local dollar store. Mine always has a variety of sizes and colors to choose from for just $1.00. Let me know if you give this a try! Happy Creating!

ask Rae


So many of you stop by each day to read, find creative inspiration and share in my art filled journey. I love the huge variety of questions I get asked and thought it might be fun to start answering some of the "most asked" queries here.


 Is there something you have been wanting to learn? Are you wondering what that tool is I use over and over again? Need an opinion on a new paint color before you hit the stores? Join me here in the studio each week and let's chat!  Leave me a comment here or email me using the contact form above and I will gladly add your question to mix! 

1. How you find time to create?

oh- I don't find time. Ever. I make time. I have to make time or I would never be able to create. I have a huge family and a lot of kids, some grown, some at home still.  I run a full time stay at home business, I babysit two toddler grand babies 4 days a week and I am involved in just about every single school activity that my kids are involved you know there is just the regular stuff that comes with LIFE. But I am a fan of setting the timer and working in small increments of time. Some days I get to reset it when the buzzer dings, some days I have to get up and walk away and on rare occasions I get hours at a time in my studio, but no matter what kind of day it is, it took planning to get there. 

2.  What is something you would like to teach?

I would love to be adept enough to teach a workshop on dyeing and weaving. I love using my looms and like with most things I am self taught. I have spent countless hours learning all the ins and outs via trial and error and I love what I have learned so far. Someday soon I would love to see a class form that begins with dyeing your own textiles and ends with a wonderful woven piece of art. But I guess the real question is - would you like to see me teach this?

3.  What is your go to journal right now?

My Pocket Journal™. I use it for all of my Art Marks™ Challenges and it has become an extension of who I am as an artist these days. I work it in every day and can't wait to have an entire shelf of them lined up in my studio. A little series of volumes- it will make me so happy. I have made three so far. One is completely filled and second is well on the way to being full!