Card for Carol Van Gerve

I had fun yesterday making this card for my friend and student, Carol Van Gerve. I met Carol 10 or 12 ago when I worked at Impressive Impressions, an Art Rubber Stamp store in Farmington, CT that is sadly, no longer in business. Carol is a really lovely person and so when I worked there, we always talked and she took a number of my mixed media classes. At that time, Carol and I lived in the same town, - in fact, right down the road from each another! I stopped by her beautiful home more than once & got to know her better. Since that time many years ago, lots has happened. My first husband left me, we got divorced, I reconnected with Steven, we got married, and then Steven & I moved twice in the past 3 years to find "our" home. I lost track of Carol for a while there, but somehow we reconnected, I think at the Springfield MA stamp show in June of 2005. Slowly but surely we started writing to each other again -- and I do mean writing, as in regular long-hand writing with paper cards as Carol does not do email! (smile)

We both enjoy creating things for each other and we both love mail art (both the making and the receiving!). You can click on the photo above of my card for Carol for a larger picture -- it was hard to reduce the size of it for the web and not lose the detail, but I think I did okay. I started with a pale green card and layered a piece of mulberry paper with music note inclusions and also some hand made lacy paper on with a glue stick and a bit of tacky glue. Then I attached a fabric collage image from Alpha Stamps' Mermaids #3 with super sticky red liner tape. I chose this tape instead of glue because I did not want any wet glue to make the card buckle. I added a bit more of the lacy handmade paper on top of the fabric mermaid image. I found a pink velvet flower given to me as a gift and added that to the bottom corner. There was a tube of tiny green/pink/blue micro beads on my work table because I had spied them when I was looking for something else and thought they were interesting. Now they seemed the perfect touch for this underwater card. I used a bit of tacky glue here and there and sprinkled on the micro beads liberally. I also had to add a few iridescent glass spheres. These are just one of my favorite embellishments -thanks to Leslie from Alpha Stamps!!

To finish the card, I added a piece of hand dyed ribbon embroidery thread and a sheer white & gold striped ribbon to the side of the card. On the inside I stamped "Thinking of you" and on the outside of the card I used just a part of that same stamp to add a few vines and leaves that surrounded the words. Then I decorated an envelope!

I used a postage stamp I made through that features a photo of me my husband recently took and the message "hello from lenna". Carol always remarks how much she loves the postage stamps I use, so I had to include this new one on her envelope. The rest is simply rubber stamping and watercolor crayons with a bird image added to the mix, as Carol loves birds. I would like to share two sets of cards and envelopes that Carol has sent to me this year as they are just beautiful:

I hope this inspires you to create a handmade card and envelope for a friend or loved one in your family . . . speaking of family, I will be visiting my mom & dad in Florida next week so my blogs may be quieter than usual! I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for all your thoughts and good wishes, and prayers for my dad. He is doing remarkable better! It seems the antibiotics have beaten down the two infections that he has been battling and his heart valve looks good, with no infection. It looks like, and we are hoping that it stays true, that he will not have to have open heart surgery on the valve. Later this summer he will have an operation to reverse the colostomy that was part of the removal of the cancerous tumor, but all looks as well as it can be and he is getting around with a cane now. Steven & I so look forward to seeing him next week, and we think he will be out of the rehab center & home with my mom! Gratefully yours, Lenna