Tip Top Journal exchange - for Frieda

Well, I must start by saying I am so pleased to be in this exchanged hosted by Frieda Oxenham and Debby Harriettha. Every month we are given a partner, for whom we make a page spread. We send just the pages! It is great fun to receive a set of pages every month, instead of wait for an entire book or journal to come home.

Most everyone n the exchange is using a 7-Gypsies blank 8"x8" journal; and if not, blank watercolor pages the same size. On December 15th, I found out my partner this month is Frieda! We have a month to create our pages and Frieda has already made a set of pages for me -- you can see them on her blog. They are wonderful and go so well with my nesting theme. Frieda's theme for her journal is Romance & Roses; two things I know she is very fond of! I felt a slight trepidation when undertaking these pages for Frieda, only because I admire her work so much and wanted to create something for her that she would love.

Well, I took my time creating these 2 pages over a couple of days and I am pleased with where I traveled on my roses & romance journey for Frieda! Take a look below and then I will explain a bit . . . . click on any photo for more detail.

The left side page of this spread started out with a photo copy of a library book I found called, The Romance of Roses! That is the orange-ish rose background you see, printed onto fabric with an adhesive background - easy to peel the protective paper away and cover the 8x8 page!
Next, I added an image from Frieda's favorite collage sheet at Alpha Stamps - Lovers. I cut the image I chose in the shape of a heart, and after reading Frieda's post on snow, glorious snow I had to frame this couple with a rendition of the pergola Frieda's husband made for their rose garden. So, I copied the photo from her post, enlarged it to fit the embracing couple, and printed it onto transparency film. It is a little blurry because I needed to enlarge it, but I love that you can still tell it is Frieda's snowy rose garden and her trees! I added some word stamping done with Fabrico/Versacraft inks & heat set, a transparency in the top right corner from the Kisses Tallulah's sheet - Alpha Stamps, an old envelope and postage stamp I found, some real rose petals plucked off roses in a vase in my family room and dried in the microwave. I finished this page with a bit of stamping with Brilliance inks - roses and leaf tips.

The right side of the page starts with another photocopy from the book I found at the Library - The Romance of Roses! This side has a beautiful Poem I thought Frieda would love and a little bit of a background of rose imagery. To the poem & the background I added an image from Alpha Stamps - Tallulah's Drama Queens. It seemed to illustrate the poem so well. I added in a leftover bit of the transparency photo of the trees in Frieda's winter garden . . . . some pink paper bits for paper making that look a bit like rose petals, some pink iridescent Angelina fibers, a bit of rubber stamping and I also did direct-to-paper way at the beginning! (thank you Judy for the reminder!!) There are real rose petals here too, and I punched a hole and dangled a heart in the corner . . . . . and the stamp with the heart in the hand is from Alpha Stamps.
Let me write the poem down, because I do not think you will be able to read it off the scanned page . . . .

Encounter, by Rachel Dacus, born 1949

Hidden below the stairs

I found roses running wild.

Holding the hose thoughtlessly

on a former flower bed, I was snagged

by their sickly stick canes and uncanny perfume.

No rose grew there before.

Shabby, hardened, they were sustained

on an occasional manna of rain

which they cupped with ragged hands

zig-zagged in desperation,

cannibalizing their own blooms.

A heat-crimped rose head

sang to me in a voice

florid as a lady's room.

In velvet centifolic depth

crawled with insects fine as pencil tips

It's blasted eye stared blind

from petals shriveled back,

I never planted a rose there.

In the middle of that wild bed

stood one untortured perfect bud,

a wobbling arrow of biology

thwacked into beauty's bull's eye.

Slowly, over a red canyon of time,

it turned and smiled.

No rose ever looked at me like that.