Calling all Buckeyes!!!

Studio Calico // I love Ohio stamp set

You guys!!!! Studio Calico has an Ohio stamp set this month! YEAH!!!! You can find it right HERE, or click the image.

Here’s a little card that I made with the set — I’m sure I’ll be making more to send to friends and family back home! (Yep, I was born and raised in Ohio!)

I love you to Ohio and back by Lisa Spangler

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Happy Birthday Neat and Tangled!

Hey hi and hello there! I’m so happy (and honored!) to be hopping along to celebrate Neat & Tangled turning FOUR! Hooray!

I’ve been lucky enough to get to hang out and stamp with Danielle, the owner of Neat & Tangled, and she is one of my heroes. (Plus we both like the same kind of food — yes! If she lived closer I’d be baking her a cake and taking it right over!)


If you are just now joining the fun, you can head back to the start of the hop right here.

Two Cards!

I just may have gotten a little bit carried away — I ended up  making TWO cards. But I have so many ideas! I could have kept going and going and going and well you get the idea lol!

Hooray by Lisa Spangler

Now how about a closer look at each card, plus I have a few tips and tricks to share too.

Card #1: With Zig Clean Color Real Brush Pens

Hooray by Lisa Spangler

For my first card I decided to try coloring the Hooray piece with Zig Clean Color Real Brush pens. What a long name, right? But oh man, they are so pretty and vibrant. I’m just getting started with the markers so I only have a few — for NOW! But I kinda want them ALL! (See supplies at the end.)

I first purchased this set of “pale” colors — I put pale in quotes because they are really vibrant! I used the light blue, light carmine red and bright yellow on this card. I’d say that if you want try them out start with this set. I sure wish I’d grabbed this set of 36 to start with tho! Just sayin’. There’s also a set of 24 that’s really good too.

I started out by cutting the Hooray out of watercolor paper, and I made sure to save all the little bits in a bowl so that I could reassemble it later. Just have to say that I think Danielle is an absolute genius: there’s only 5 pieces to save if you wanna do this. YES!

Save your scraps!

My go-to watercolor paper for cardmaking these days is the Kid Made Modern pack from Target — you can find it in the craft aisle (IF I haven’t been to your store and bought it all hahaha!) I love this paper since it’s smooth for stamping on, yet takes paint really well. And you can’t beat the price.

Since I used thicker watercolor paper the flower centers didn’t cut out — but that was okay by me. I wanted to let ya know that they cut out just fine from regular cardstock.

I began by coloring the wreath part with the markers and using a waterbrush to blend them together.

Color with Zigs

Then my secret trick! I used a black glaze gelly roll pen to color the “hooray”. Love love love how this gives it some shine! I’ve tried using glossy accents before and I must confess that I just end up making a blobby mess. So the pen’s the way to go for me. Then I added some pen to the centers of the flowers.

Hooray Closeup by Lisa Spangler

I pieced the wreath together and added some washi tape on the backside to hold all the pieces in place. Then I finished off the card by white heat embossing the “it’s your birthday” sentiment from the Celebrate set and tucking it under the wreath.

Hooray Closeup by Lisa Spangler

And that was that! I mailed this card to my step-mom on Monday for her birthday — sure hope she likes it!

Now on to…

Card #2: Gouache, Watercolors, and NEON!

Here’s the finished card — it’s super hard to capture that neon glow! I sure wish you could see it in person.

Hooray by Lisa Spangler

I’ve been noticing little pops of neon here and there lately. It’s not full blown/in your face neon, but a more subtle neon that I really like.

For this card, I started off by painting a background with watercolor. I mixed up a peachy coral pink color by blending opera pink, red and orange paints until I got it how I liked it.

BIG brush

Then I trimmed some watercolor paper to make a 4.25″ square card and scored it but didn’t fold it. I grabbed my artist tape and taped off a border, and taped it to a cutting mat that came free with my blender at the same time. Taping your paper to something like this will help keep the paper from warping as it dries.

Then for my BIG trick! I grabbed my biggest brush — which in my case is a size 30 round — and I loaded it with color and painted the background.

BIG brush

I’ve found that using a big brush like this means you can pretty much cover a whole card with your loaded brush — which is great because unlike using a smaller brush you don’t have to fuss over blending colors after you’ve run out of paint and have to load it again. I got my brush at my local Jerry’s Artarama store — so dangerous having this awesome art store in town! — but you can find it online here.  It was really inexpensive — I think I got it on sale for around $10.

I also started using a butcher tray as my watercolor palette a few months ago and I have to say that I love love love it! It’s so great to be able to mix colors with abandon. I don’t clean it between uses unless I mix up a truly horrible color — and then I only clean that one spot with a baby wipe. When I run out of paint I just squeeze more on there. Storage is super easy if you have the famous Alex drawers from IKEA — the tray will just slide right underneath the unit. YEAH!

Color with Gouache

While the background was drying I started working on the wreath. I first cut another wreath out of the same watercolor paper as before, but this time I colored it with gouache. I’ve been totally addicted to gouache lately! Here I used lumi red and opera rose for the flowers, then gold gouache for the “hooray”. I love how intense these colors are!

I also watered down both colors and use that to color some of the flowers for a little variation.

Now for my little trick! I wanted to cut the wreath out of the center of my base card, so I needed to make sure it was straight. I had a little AHA! moment and lightly taped my colored wreath to the die just so I could position it. I used this post-it note® tape — I keep a roll right next to my die cut machine and it always comes in handy!

Then I removed the wreath before running it through the machine.

Die cutting tip

Worked like a charm!

And then! I decided to make this card a little different and backed the die cut area with acetate, then I adhered the wreath on top.

Hooray by Lisa Spangler

I adhered some gold foil polka dot paper behind the acetate so that it would hide the glue.

I thought about adding some sequins to this card — but in the end I decided to keep it clean and simple. I did stamp the birthday same birthday sentiment that I used on the first card on the inside in gold ink.

I popped this one in the mail for my MIL on Monday — sure hope she gets it before she sees it here — she follows my blog hahaha! Hi Mom! Love you!

Hop On & Giveaway!

Your next stop on the hop is the amazing JULIEEEEEEE E!!! I can’t wait to see what she’s made — she always rocks my world! Here’s today’s list in case ya need it:

Don’t forget: Neat & Tangled is giving away one $50 gift certificate and one $100 gift certificate to the Neat & Tangled Store.  The two lucky winners will be chosen from ALL the comments so be sure to comment at all stops on all five days!

Just have to say one more time: Happy Happy HAPPY Birthday to everyone Neat & Tangled! Big huge hugs, Danielle! So happy for you!!! HOORAY! xoxo


Here are the main supplies that I used. The links to Amazon (AZ) are affiliate links, so I’ll receive a small commission if you make your purchase by clicking the link. There’s no extra fee to you! :)

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20 in 20 — Texas style!

finished750Hey hey y’all! I’m over on the Studio Calico blog today with a fun (and easy!) mixed media technique video using gesso + the Texas stamp! It’s still my fave stamp from the last release, and it’s perfect for my new project: documenting 20 things I’ve learned in the 20 years we’ve lived in Texas.

I’m using this awesome TEXAS Field Notes notebook from their County Fair line. They were sold out for a while there, but they’re back now yeah!

Hope you’ll join me over at SC and watch the video,

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Sip sip hooray! (more gouache!)

I’m still at it with the gouache! I’ve been a little obsessed with it for months, actually. Check out this post for a brief intro to gouache and a set of cactus cards.

Today I’ve got a card I made for a friend who’s going to be retiring in August. So happy for her! Here’s the card:

Sip Sip Hooray! by Lisa Spangler


It all started out because I wanted to use this stamp set from Studio Calico — it’s the only one that I have with a retirement sentiment. It has a ton of other cute sentiments too! I can’t believe it hasn’t sold out.


I especially like the “sip sip hooray” and the “you can do it — coffee” :)

Now here’s a look at my inspiration for coloring the mug:


Aren’t those colors just amazing? I sure wish I could have purchased this mug but it’s sold out — darn! I guess painting it will have to do. I’ve had it on my wishlist for so long. Guess the saying is true, if ya snooze ya lose!

I started off by stamping the mug on kraft paper with soft granite ink. Then I went to town. Love how gouache is opaque so it can go right over the kraft paper.

Now how about three ways for using gouache!

#1 Add Water + Dry Brush

For the white part of the mug, I wanted to duplicate the brush strokes in the inspiration photo, so I watered down some white gouache and then I brushed it on with a dry brush.

Gouache Mug by Lisa Spangler

So cool, right?

#2 Stamping on Gouache

The second way I used gouache was to stamp on it! It works great — just as if you stamped over ink or watercolor. Here you can see where I stamped the coffee inside the mug as well as the steam coming up over the top.

Gouache Mug by Lisa Spangler

I adhered the mug to the card from using foam tape to give it more dimension.

#3 Mixing with Watercolor

The third way I used gouache was to mix it with watercolor. Yes, you can mix gouache with watercolor to make new colors. YEAH!

Gouache Mug by Lisa Spangler

Here I mixed the yellow gouache from this set with brown watercolor to form that middle stripe. I just used an inexpensive watercolor set from Michaels since it happened to be on my desk.

I also added a little pink watercolor to my peach gouache (the official name is “flesh tint” but I think peach sounds better ha ha) to form a darker pink. I painted this one on really smooth to get even coverage. Love that matte finish.

Of course you can also mix different shades of gouache together, too!

And there ya have it! I kept the card pretty simple to keep the focus on the gouache. Sip sip hooray!


Here are the main supplies that I used. These are affiliate links, so I’ll receive a small commission if you make your purchase by clicking the link. There’s no extra fee to you! :)

SC = Studio Calico and AZ = Amazon.

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The Daily Marker 30 Day Coloring Challenge: With Gouache!

Hi there and welcome to “The Daily Marker 30 Day Coloring Challenge” Blog Hop. This challenge is the genius creation of the amazing Kathy Racoosin. Can you believe this is her 5th challenge? It’s gotta be a ton of work. She’s one of my stamping heroes!


The premise of the challenge is to color something everyday even if it’s for five minutes. It doesn’t matter what you color or what medium you use. You can jump in or out of the challenge at any time. Find out more right here on Kathy’s blog.

I can’t tell you how much I love playing along with the challenge. Because a day without coloring is just not the same.

FIVE Cards (!!!!!)

Five cards -- with Gouache! by Lisa Spangler

Yeah, I got a little carried away — what can I say! I love coloring. :)

I ended up making five cards — and I could have kept going! But I had to stop and take photos to share them with you.

These all use gouache. It’s my new addiction. :)

So, what the heck is gouache?


I thought I’d start off with a little bit about gouache — rhymes with squash. This paint is so cool. It’s kind of like watercolor, but it’s opaque. This means that you can use it on dark cardstock and it will block out the layer underneath it. Love!

It also dries to a matte finish — double love! And it doesn’t take long to dry at all, especially in this Texas heat.

Just like watercolors, you can mix colors together to form new colors. I like to add a little water to the paint to make it easier to work with. Just enough so that it spreads well. Some of the colors need more than others. You can even mix gouache with watercolors if you like!


One last thing you should know. There are two kinds of gouache out there in the world. One is waterproof when dry, while the other reactivates with water. Generally, if the tube has a word on it that kinda resembles “acrylic” on it then it’s waterproof. It’s best to check the manufacturer’s info before purchasing. Neither one is better than the other, it just depends on what you want. Some of mine that are waterproof have the words “acryl” and “acryla”. I can’t wait to try some techniques that take advantage of this! Art journaling, anyone?

When I’m working  with gouache that dries to be waterproof I like to squeeze it out on a disposable paper plate or wax paper — that way cleanup is a snap. Before I realized it would dry hard I used a watercolor palette, oops! I’ll never do that again. I’m going to purchase this “stay-wet palette” to see how that works — I’ll report back!

If you’re just starting out with gouache I’d recommend getting some FUN colors and some basics. You could start with the primary red, green and blue and mix your own, of course. Here’s my list:

  • Winsor & Newton white and gold — both of these can be reactivated after they’ve dried! You can also mix them with watercolors. I’d say they are must-haves.
  • Turner lumi. rose and lumi. red — these have a bright, vibrant look that the camera just doesn’t do justice. They almost seem to glow! I used them on all the cactus flowers. They are waterproof when dry.
  • Winsor & Newton has this basic set that I wish I’d got to start with. It includes white and black.
  • Turner has this basic set — the greens on the cacti are mainly the perm. green light that’s in the set. These are waterproof when dry! I also mixed that green with Winsor & Newton ultramarie blue for the dark green, or white + a touch of pale aqua for the minty green.

The Process

All five cards followed pretty much the same process. First I stamped the images from the Hero Arts Stamp Your Own Cactus set with soft granite ink (supplies are listed at the end), and then I colored them with gouache.

Hero Arts Stamp Your Own Cactus (SSS)

Hero Arts Stamp Your Own Cactus (SSS)

For this one, I stamped the pot on the left in black because I really wanted it to pop! You’ll notice that I didn’t even bother to mask them since the gouache covers everything up.


The plant in the middle and the other pots are from the Hero Arts Stamp Your Own Succulents set — it mixes so well with the cactus set.

Here’s the finished card!

Cactus Trio by Lisa Spangler


See how the pale yellow and baby blue gouache stripes can go right over that black ink on the flowerpot? It works the same on black cardstock.

Here’s another view — I went out in the driveway and took this pic so you could see all that golden shimmer! Got some weird looks from the neighbors lol! But I wanted you to be able to see it. :)

Cactus Trio with Gouache by Lisa Spangler

The white gouache makes for some awesome spines, am I right? :)

I painted the flowers freehand with lumi. red and lumi. rose gouache.

A Closer Look

Now how about a closer look the other four cards! I’ll just add a few notes here and there about ’em that I just have to share with you.

Card #2: Howdy: This one has gold and white gouache for the spines and the sand. Notice how the white gouache shows up against the green!

Howdy by Lisa Spangler

Howdy by Lisa Spangler

Here’s another view so you can see the golden spines + sand :)

Howdy by Lisa Spangler

Card #3: Greetings from Texas: I’m at it again with the white gouache on this one! LOVE this Texas set by Kelly Purkey. It goes perfectly with prickly pear cacti! We have some in our garden. :)

Greetings from Texas by Lisa Spangler
Card #4: All The Cacti!: I left this one blank on the front because I could’t bear to cover up any of those cacti! :) I think this one is my fave — I put on music and then just colored away.

All the Cacti by Lisa Spangler

ALL the Cacti by Lisa Spangler


Card #5: Cuddling Cacti: Speaking of not being able to cover up anything on the front — I had to stamp the message on the inside of this one. Don’t they look like they’re cuddling? LOL! I plan to give this card to my husband.

Cuddling Cacti by Lisa Spangler

Cuddling Cacti by Lisa Spangler

Here’s a look back at all FIVE cards!


Whew! Thanks for sticking with me! (Get it, sticking? ha!)


At the end of the hop you will find an awesome GIVEAWAY from Hero Arts: 2 shopping sprees of $25.00 each! YEAH! Winners will be randomly selected from all the blog comments of the blog hop.

Hop On

Your next stop on the hop is Virginia Lu’s blog! I can’t wait to see what she makes — just love everything she does. She also organized this hop — thanks Virginia! She is another of my stamping heroes.

Here’s the full lineup in case you’d like to start at the beginning or encounter a broken link:

Such a great lineup — love these talented women. Can’t tell you how much it means to be able to count them as friends. So thankful for Hero Arts for bringing us all together. My heart is full.

I also wanted to say BIG thanks to all of YOU for hopping along with us! Hugs all around, and yay for this community that brings us all together.

Hope you have a great day — with time to color, if only for 5 minutes. xoxo


Here are the main supplies that I used. These are affiliate links, so I’ll receive a small commission if you make your purchase by clicking the link. There’s no extra fee to you! :)

SSS = Simon Says Stamp and AZ = Amazon.

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