Mixed Media Morsels & more

Tips, Ideas, and Inspiration

I really enjoy using everyday items to make marks in my mixed media projects and I’d like to show you another way to use the handmade stamps I created in my Mixed Media Morsels, Dessert #6 video. The tag I have made for the month of June features a simple leaf stamp I made from ordinary fun foam, and instead of using the leaf as a focal point, I created a colorful background, using just that one stamp and several colors of Ranger Archival Inks.


I wanted the colors of the leaves in the background to be somewhat light, so after inking up the stamp, I stamped it a couple of times on a sheet of printer paper before stamping it onto my tag. I really like how the paper turned out!


I decided to use a couple of stamps from my stash to create the focal point. Using my water brush, I wet the tissue around the stamped images, making it easier to tear them out. Tearing the images helps them to disappear once they are adhered. If your images are cut out, rather than torn, they will have sharp lines that will be more obvious when they are adhered to your project.


The border is a hand-drawn line with black dots, made with a Sharpie Ultra Fine Point Marker. I added a few more of the black dots later, along with some additional white dots using a Posca paint pen. My tag needed a reinforcement sticker on the hole, so I used some of the purple Archival Ink to color an ordinary white one, then applied it to the tag once it was dry. Voila! No longer ordinary, now it’s a custom, matching sticker!


I adhered the stamped tissue paper images with Collage Pauge. You can see how the tissue virtually disappears – I love that! After it was completely dry, I colored in the butterfly stamp with paint pens and I’m very pleased with the simple beauty of it.



Sometimes finding joy in ordinary things just means you have to look at them in a different way – a way other than their intended purpose. That’s what I have found in using common household items as mark-making tools in my art – like making stamps with fun foam, using an empty tape roll or jar lid to make circles, bubble wrap to make dots, or a piece of shelf liner to make cool patterns. I like thinking and creating outside the box and believe me – it’s joyful! 🙂

Thanks for stopping by,

P.S. I have just listed a second set of mark-making tools in my Etsy shop. There is a limited number of these sets, so if you’re interested in getting one, don’t wait. I have a special bonus coupon code available just for my blog followers. Use this link to receive 15% off my Mixed Media Mark-making Value Pack – Set 2. The code (MMVPSET2) will be automatically applied at checkout and it will be good through July 7, 2018 unless these value packs sell out before then. Thanks so much for following me!


Products I use and recommend: https://www.amazon.com/shop/cathand

After getting some computer issues straightened out, I can finally share my tag that showcases my YouTube video for Mixed Media Morsels, Dessert #5. In this video, I altered some clothing and product tags, creating tiny houses out of some of them. I really love them, so while I was crankin’ out little houses, I decided I wanted this month’s tag to be a house as well… a bird house, in fact!


Here’s how I did it: I wanted a “wooden” bird house, so I started by painting my tag with a mixture of brown and yellow acrylic paint, not caring if the tag was covered entirely. Surprisingly, leaving some areas white caused the brown painted tag to look like weathered wood!


My next step was to stamp the tag with a wood grain pattern.


I painted another piece of card stock for the roof, adhered it, and then I drew some lines with a brown Faber-Castell Pitt pen. I used a grey Pitt pen for the shadowing. The circle in the center was punched from brown card stock then shaded with the grey Pitt pen. The perch was punched with a regular hole punch and painted.


I used some painted book text and music papers, along with some dies, to cut out the leaves and my little bird. I adhered them with a glue stick and then shaded and highlighted them.


The words were handwritten on a scrap of tan card stock, then cut out and outlined with a brown Micron pen. I also added some tiny lines here and there to give them a bit of a worn, wooden look. Then I “nailed” them to the bird house.




To complete the tag, I added a reinforcement sticker to the hole and tied on a piece of jute. As you can see, my little tag book is coming right along.


Creating this tag was so much fun! I appreciate your stopping by and taking a look.

See ya next time,

P.S. If you’re looking for products I use and recommend, you can check out my Amazon shop here:  https://www.amazon.com/shop/cathand



“Play is the highest form of research.” George Bernard Shaw reminds us that, “We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” Hmm, maybe these guys were secretly mixed media artists, LOL!

It’s so much fun to just play — paint, scribble, stick down papers, etc., with no expectation of the outcome. It can be very disappointing when a project doesn’t turn out the way we envision it, so we should let go of all those preconceived ideas and just play! Finding out what will happen when we don’t think about what we’re doing can be very surprising and exciting!  🙂

This month’s tag for Mixed Media Morsels, Dessert #4, was quite an enjoyable play time for me. I used my Derwent Inktense pencils to make a colorful watercolor background for my tag.


Next, I used a piece of small bubble wrap and some white acrylic paint to stamp some dots onto the background of the tag. Something as simple as this step really makes such a huge difference in how the piece looks!


I penciled in my quote, using a few of the lettering techniques I covered in my recent YouTube video. If you missed it, you can click here to watch. I then used a black UniBall pen to thicken the script lettering and my Faber-Castell PITT pens to color in the partial block lettering. The highlighting and doodles were made with a white Posca paint pen.


I added a black butterfly and some stars – both are Remnant Rubs by Tim Holtz . Then I tied some colorful eyelash fibers on the top. While I was at it, I also added fibers to the first two tags in this series, ‘cuz they looked kinda nekked.  😉


Mister Rogers said, “Play is the work of childhood.” So we all need to find the child inside of us, keep the research alive, and keep ourselves young — in other words, we need to PLAY!

See ya next time,

Wooo Hoooo! It’s time for another giveaway and it’s very easy to enter! Just click here to watch my Doodled Painted Paper video on YouTube and look for the Secret Word. Then click this link Cat’s Giveaway on Rafflecopter and follow the directions to enter. You will be asked to give the Secret Word when entering. After the giveaway has ended, I will post another video to share the name of the randomly selected winner. I will then contact the winner via email to request their mailing address.

The giveaway prize package will contain some surprises for the winner, as well as this painted/doodled paper I created in the video.


Many, many thanks to everyone who watches my YouTube videos and supports my efforts to share the joy of creating. I hope you know how much I appreciate you all!

See you soon!

Yep, I’m still taggin’ along… and this time I’m creating another tag to showcase a handmade embellishment from my Mixed Media Morsels, Dessert #3 video on YouTube. I had so much fun making several embellishments, using up scraps and bits from my stash.


The little dragonfly embellishment I created in the video was a tag in itself, but I’ve chosen to use it as a focal point for my larger tag this month. I added some tiny white dots to the small tag’s border to brighten it up just a bit. Next, I covered a blank tag with a piece of patterned scrapbook paper, then used some stamps to add some floral images and some script in random spots across the tag. I used a black Sharpie marker to draw some tiny scalloped borders on an old book page, then cut them out and glued them around the edge of the tag.

Lastly, I tied the two tags together, allowing the smaller tag to swing freely. I like attaching it in this way, so that I can lift it and add some journaling or a photo, if I choose to do so.


So, my little tag book is growing and I’m really enjoying it. I hope some of you are “taggin’ along” with me, creating some fun tags and making your own little tag book of yummy desserts! If you’re not, it’s never too late to start…

Happy creating!

Ahhh, burlap… a rough, scratchy fabric, for sure, and kind of difficult to use easily in arts and crafts projects because of its tendency to unravel. But I found that if acrylic paint or glue is applied, it can become very usable! Check out my YouTube video, Mixed Media Morsels, Dessert #2, to see this simple process.

Recently, I altered another tag, this time using burlap as the focal point. I began by covering a blank tag with patterned tissue paper, using Collage Pauge. Then I painted leaves directly onto a piece of burlap, in various shades of green acrylic paint. While the paint was drying, I used markers to draw a border around the tag, adding some squiggly doodles. Next, I cut out the burlap leaves and glued them in place, adding a piece of baker’s twine for the stem. I outlined the leaves with a black pen and glued on the word “explore,” outlining it with teal, black, and a couple more doodles. As a finishing touch, I put some black dots on the tag, which I made by using a stylus tool dipped in India ink. The back side is collaged with pieces of book text, in the same way I did my previous tag. I’m really pleased with how it turned out!


Here’s how my little tag book is coming along…


I hope you are creating some tags along with me, using the easy-to-follow techniques from the Mixed Media Morsels – Desserts series. It is so enjoyable to create on a small substrate, with no great expectations of its outcome, but only to have fun in the process of creating. Who knew a piece of plain ol’ burlap could be turned into fun, colorful embellishments and provide such great texture on a project without unraveling all over the place? I sure didn’t, but I guess that’s what exploring is all about!

See ya soon,

Well, I made a tag… with a wish on it, LOL! I wanted to share how I used one of the  wooden pieces I altered in my YouTube video for Mixed Media Morsels, Dessert #1.  Here’s how I created it: I cut a tag from card stock – it is approximately 3×5 inches. I covered it with a piece of a page from my “Composition Book of Unwasted Paint” and created the black and white border with Posca paint pens. Then I stamped some black dots on the background. I found some doodled flower stickers in my stash and adhered them, then stamped some tiny red flowers. I gave the flowers some bling centers and then adhered my wood embellishment with some double-sided tape. The back side is collaged with pieces of book text.




I really enjoyed creating this tag and I think I’d like to create a tag to showcase each of my Desserts this year, sharing each one here. At the end of the year, I’ll have a nice little tag book, bound with a metal ring at the top. Maybe you’d like to make one, too — that’s my wish!

See you next time,


I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and enjoyed your holidays. I was blessed with  another special Christmas with my family, making so many great memories. And now, 2018 is already right around the corner!

We often think of a new year as a THE time to start over or try something new. We get carried away making resolutions that we don’t stick to – because we’re human and life gets in the way. I, personally, am not one for making new year’s resolutions, but I occasionally like to set a goal or two for the year. I never feel that I have failed if I don’t succeed in my goals, I just keep on keepin’ on. There’s really no point in allowing yourself to feel like a failure; however, continuing to try can be quite rewarding. The way I look at it, new beginnings happen every single day, not just on January 1st of each year. So if you find yourself feeling discouraged about a particular thing, try making the decision to wake up every day with a smile on your face and begin again. You never know what might happen.


See you next year!  😉

There’s something about the chill in the air in the Fall that just makes me want a big pot of soup simmering on the stove (or in the crock pot), filling my home with the aromas of a wonderful meal to come. A good friend of mine had recently told me about taco soup, which I had never heard of before but thought it sounded great! It’s one of those soups you can really get creative with, because you can put in the things you like and leave out the things that make you go, “Ewww!” So I looked around on the internet and found several recipes, then I jotted down the ingredients I wanted to put in my soup. I found that I already had a lot of the ingredients in my pantry, which was nice. Then I shopped for the remaining ingredients and put together a delicious soup that I will definitely be making again. I will list my recipe below, since several of you requested it when I posted this picture on my Facebook page. Don’tcha just love my “fine china??”


Chicken Taco Soup

2 lbs. frozen chicken tenderloins
Sweet Balsamic salad dressing
Montreal Chicken seasoning (McCormick brand)
Dried parsley

28 oz. can of petite diced tomatoes, with juices
15 oz. can tomato sauce
14-15 oz. can yellow corn, drained
11 oz. can white corn, drained
15 oz. can pinto beans, rinsed & drained
15 oz. can black beans, rinsed & drained
1 pkg. taco seasoning mix
1 pkg. ranch dressing mix
1 jar mild salsa (mine was 15.5 oz.)
1-2 cups water (add gradually for desired consistency)

Fresh cilantro, chopped
Fresh chives, chopped
Avocado, cubed
Lime slices, to squeeze over soup
Olives, sliced (green or black)
Shredded cheese
Sour cream
Tabasco sauce

Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees.

Place frozen chicken tenderloins in baking dish. Pour sweet balsamic dressing over the chicken to coat it. Sprinkle with Montreal chicken seasoning and dried parsley. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink inside. Remove from oven and allow to cool.

In a large pot, add remaining ingredients, except for garnishes. Heat on med-low, stirring occasionally. Cut chicken into bite-sized pieces and add to pot. {Try to refrain from chowing down on the chicken as you cut it up, lol! It will be difficult — I know, because I make this chicken dish all the time and LOVE it, which is why I used it in the soup.} Simmer for 15-20 minutes. Serve with flatbread, Fritos or tortilla chips, and garnishes.

I made mine a day early, so after it cooled down, I placed the covered pot in the refrigerator overnight. You know how things always tend to taste so much better the next day after the flavors have combined? Well, let me tell you, this was no exception – it was AMAZING!

I hope you will get creative in your kitchen this Fall and try this yummy soup. Your house will smell awesome and your tummy will thank you.  Enjoy! 🙂

See you soon,

For the past few weeks, I’ve been having a great time altering puzzle pieces, making hanging ornaments out of them. So I decided to make one for my Mixed Media Morsels, Main Dish #8 video. If you haven’t seen it yet, you can click here to watch. These little ornaments are just over 2 inches tall and can be hung on a Christmas tree or anywhere in your home throughout the year. They make sweet handmade gifts and several people commented on the video that they wanted to make some to use as gift tags, which is another great idea! In the video, I said that I would be posting some pictures of my ornaments here on the blog, so here they are.





I found my 24-piece kids’ puzzles at my local Dollar Tree store. I have also found puzzles at thrift stores and garage sales. I hope you will find some to alter and have fun using up your leftover bits of napkins, stickers, beads, charms, embellishments, and anything else you can attach to them. And be sure to look at things before you toss them — it’s amazing how much we often throw away that could be turned into something as cute as these little ornaments!

Till next time,

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