Monday, December 19, 2011're it!

Hi, Honoré here: Lately I've been smitten by tags... you know, those sundry shipping tags that come in a variety of sizes. Perhaps it's the season since tags are pretty much on most of our minds as we begin (anyone finished?) to wrap holiday presents and/or finish making cards. Or perhaps it's the fact that as I've visited blogs throughout this month, I'm seeing lots of clever ideas and tutorials for making tags for everything from creating shopping or to-do lists to fabric books to clever ways to package gift cards. Seems that the sky is the limit.

Tags are quite versatile; they can be used as:
  1. gifts
  2. shopping/to-do lists
  3. substrate for practicing techniques ranging from masking, misting, stamping, and stenciling, to journaling or taking notes
  4. embellishments on pages in a mini album or as pages on which to mount photos from your iPhone or camera phone.
You can write, paint, stitch, glue, type, stamp, cut, tear, crumble, or emboss tags. Don't like what you did? Not a problem; just paint over the tag and use it to try something else...or save it and cut it into shapes or strips or adhere it to a page in your art journal for use further down the road...
In the scheme of things, tags are really quite inexpensive and handy little things to have around. Being quite portable, you can carry them with you at all times for those unexpected free moments.

Over the next couple weeks, between the holidays' lull, why not play with some tags. Try out a technique or a supply that is new to you. A tag is small and definitely not as intimidating as a full sized piece of art paper or a blank page in an art journal. Have Fun. Play. Experiment. And remember, you don't need to throw the tag can be used in your art journal or recycled as an embellishment or used to make a grocery, to-do, or don't forget list...
And while we're on the subject of tags, have you checked out the new class - Peeled Pages -coming in January that features tags as pages? Check out the description here and don't tarry about registering: seating is limited and spaces are filling up fast.
Happy Holidays!

PS: This tutorial by Tammy Tutterow is a great example of creating a tag in action. And of course, you can purchase most if not all of the supplies and tools, including some of the Crafter's Workshop stencils, right here at The Queen's Ink. How about a gift from you to you?

Sunday, December 4, 2011

art makin' for all ages...

Honoré here: Yesterday, Sat Dec 4, there was lots of activity going on in the store to celebrate its 11th birthday: a toy drive, a class and a smorgasbord of tasty snacks and delightful, sinful desserts. As I wandered through the store, stopping to admire the growing collection of little houses sitting on the piano, I was thinking: this store has so much eye  candy and interesting things that children would love to get their hands on to explore and create.

Continuing my walkabout through the store, I peeped into the class in session; the group was learning to use Copic markers and microfine glitter from Elizabeth Crafts to make really cool embellishments.
In the class was a young lady, nine years old, who takes many classes at Queen's Ink and who, in her own words, "has been making art since she started walking, oh, when she was about 18 months old."
Hearing her words, memories from my childhood flooded over me. Next to reading, my absolute favorite activity was making art. I had one go-to book - whose title totally escapes me; all that I can remember is the book had all sorts of interesting things for me to do and learn. And, that is the same thought I have about The Queen's Ink... so many interesting things for me to do and learn!

The Queen's Ink is not only for adults - there are also treasures and discoveries for children, from A - Z (artist trading cards to Zentangles). So, might I suggest that you introduce a child (including your inner one) to the treasures and discoveries at The Queen's Ink: a class; a rubber stamp; a fun mixed media project like the houses currently on display, etc. 
I think you'll both be delighted with your finds. Enjoy!


PS. You can start with a gift certificate in any denomination you want, and certificates are good for a entire year.

Friday, November 18, 2011

The Queen's Ink Holiday Challenge...

It takes a village… a Winter Holiday Village that is! This year we are planning a Holiday art challenge inspired by a recent issue of Cloth, Paper, Scissors and our friends at Ink About It! in Massachusetts.  We we want to build a village of little houses to display around the shoppe this holiday season. We hope you’ll join us in this creative journey as we construct The Holiday Queendom. Individual houses are ready for pick-up now for a $2.00 fee, and can be returned beginning December 1 (just in time for the Queen's Ink Eleventh Birthday Bash), and up through December 15th. We will build the village as the participants bring in their decorated houses, and will display in the shoppe until January 15. (Your house will then be returned to you.)

First Prize: $25 Gift Certificate for The Queen’s Ink
Second Prize: $15 Gift Certificate for The Queen’s Ink

Third Prize: $10 Gift Certificate for The Queen’s Ink

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

gel printing fun...

Hi, it's Honoré here. If you remember, earlier in October, the Queen's Ink got a new product, a gel printing plate by Gelli Arts that makes it totally possible to monoprint without using gelatin! Clearly a 21st Century advancement. In my first/last post, I indicated that I had purchased a gel printing plate and that I'd share experiences and impressions. For starters, I had fun! Really super messy fun!

If you check out this post, you'll see a link to a video demonstration on how to use the gel plate. First, let me say it really is as easy as demonstrated, and clean up is a snap too. However, my workspace, hands and apron did not stay clean and neat as you'll see on the video. Or could it be that I'm just messy?!

I tried a variety of ways to make marks: rubber and foam stamps; stencils; and found items from the kitchen and various junk drawers. I used plastic forks, Q-tips, a meat tenderizer, a toothbrush, paintbrushes with different tips, my fingers and even a seashell I found. Stencils work least best as the paint always has a tendency to leak - it's better to dab paint on a stencil. I liked the impressions made by the rubber stamp better than those created with a foam stamp. The most fun were the "household found items." My suggestion: gather those items before you get started and just play. Here are a couple photos from my playtime:

The left, teal print was made with a stencil; the right, with stamps.

All the markings in this photo were made with the found household items; the yellow piece is also printed on muslin. I really like the texture and the clarity of the markings. Gonna have to try printing on fabrics, more.

Queen's Ink has both sizes of the gel plates: the 6 x 6 and the 8 x 10. I think if you like printing and want to try your hand at a simple, fun and creative way to print your art journal pages, tags and other mixed media pieces, you can't go wrong with this tool.
Let us know what you make.


PS. And it'll make a great gift too; even children,I'd say ages 8+, will take to it.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

New Christmas dies....

Just a quick post to let you know that the long-anticipated Christmas dies... Bigz, Movers & Shapers, and Sizzlet strips are now available in the shoppe. Hurry... they'll go fast!!!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Wendy Vecchi Workshops...Great Success!

In last week's newsletter, I promised some photos of Wendy Vecchi's sample projects that graced our shoppe during her weekend workshops. I saw quite a few flashes going off... such great inspiration!

Our November class schedule is shaping up nicely... Judi and Rob, owners of JudiKins stamps, are visiting us the weekend before Thanksgiving when Savage Mill kicks off the holiday season with "Magic at the Mill". Judi is teaching three classes and doing some demos too. Check our November class schedule for details, then call to reserve your spot! We just received a shipment of the newest stamps from JudiKins... we are NEVER disappointed! Come see for yourself.

Monday, October 17, 2011

introducing ...

Oh Hi, didn't hear you come in. My name is Honoré. I am a career-graduate (think retired) public librarian and I've been a Queen's Ink customer since circa 2004.

One of the things I like most about being a career graduate is the fact that it reminds me so much of kindergarten. Everyday I wake up - well, most days - and say to myself: "Let's see, what shall I do/play with/learn today? The options are endless; for example, I can read, art journal, knit, quilt, go to a museum, treat myself to a long, leisurely lunch alone or with friends, or take a class either online or in person at places like the Queen's Ink.

Even if there isn't a class scheduled, I might just pop in to see what's new - I just love the displays of projects, papers, stamps and other supplies - and to spend a few minutes chatting with Patti, Lolly and Janet. Many times, I am there when a new shipment arrives - magazines, new stamps or a new goodie like the new Gelli Arts Gel Printing Plate Lolly profiled here - are being inventoried.

A couple times a month, I'm going to post to this blog, sharing with you tips, tidbits, insights and news about the Queen's Ink from my point of view as a customer. In my next post, I'll share with you some of the pieces I made with the Gelli Arts Gel Printing Plate. Yep, I bought one.

I'm looking forward to connecting with you via this blog. Thanks for stopping by.


PS. My shirt reads: Queen of Unfinished Projects. I thought it was appropriate for this blog.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Gelli Arts Gel Printing Plate... what fun!

Have you ever wanted to try gelatin printing, but didn't want to deal with the mess, the storage issues, or the mold that grows over time? I saw a demo and had a chance to play a little bit with a new product that makes it easy to do gelatin printing and couldn't wait to show it to Patti! GelliArts has created a fabulous gelatin-like surface, available in two sizes, that enables you to create monoprints using paint, stamps, stencils, fingers, and your imagination. Patti immediately placed an order, and we've already had to restock! You have to see this in action only once to want to join the fun.

Patti has many samples available using different kinds of paper... tissue paper, watercolor and printmaking paper, manila tag paper, fabric... endless opportunities using different surfaces! We would love to see what YOU create with your GelliArt plate, so send a photo to

Friday, July 8, 2011

SMASH ! has arrived...

So, what do you Smash? Well, it doesn’t have to be a life event, just the special little moments and mementos of your day—some of that stuff in your junk drawer, for example. A snapshot, a ticket stub from that movie you loved, a newspaper clipping, a magazine snippet, a cardboard coaster from a favorite restaurant, your child’s first crayon doodle…get the idea? Smash it, jot a note or add a caption sticker, and go! This video will show you everything you need to know.

The SMASH Book can travel around with you, on all of your adventures! It comes with a two-in-one pen and glue stick, so you can add movie tickets right after you see the movie AND write your review as soon as you walk out of the theater. The point of this amazing book is that it’s NOT perfect, but a place where you can jot down your ideas, glue in an idea you saw in a magazine, add bits of memorabilia – there are ENDLESS possibilities with this book!This video will help you get started, then a trip to the shoppe will get you all the supplies you need to SMASH your life.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

I'm happy to report to you that the Queen has resumed her throne (often for full days), although she does have to sit and do the icepack routine after a few hours on her feet. She is working on a class schedule for July and August, including workshops with Dyan Reaveley on July 23rd and 24th. Those details are forthcoming and will be posted here as well as on our website when they're finalized. Kudos to our very own Ellen Vargo who couldn't wait to use Dyan's new "Dylusion" stamps, and created these fabulous tags for us:

The new Wizard of Oz Collection from Graphic 45 is now in stock. I never get tired of watching the movie, and I sure do love the Scarecrow... maybe because I'm often singing to myself "...if I only had a brain"! Three different collections of cling-mounted stamps are available in this collection--really cute!

New products since last blogpost:
  • New wood and cling mounted images from Stampendous
  • New cling mounted Wizard of Oz Collection images from Graphic 45
  • Restock of "Dylusions" stamps by Dyan Reaveley from Stampers Anonymous
  • New stamps from Lockhart Stamp Company
  • New stamps and dies from Memory Box
  • Restock of T!m Holtz Collection cling stamp sets from Stampers Anonymous
  • New 12x12 and 8x8 Wizard of Oz Collection double-sided papers from Graphic 45
  • New decorative specialty paper and chipboard accents from KanBan
  • Tim Holtz Collection Mini Movers & Shapers - Flourish and Lock and Key from Sizzix
  • New paper embellishments from Imaginisce
  • New and restock of bottlecap paper images in a variety of themes, cabachons, pendants and chains from BottleCap Inc.
  • New Archival Ink Pads in 24 colors from Ranger
  • New Foil Tape Sheets from Ranger
  • Restock of Adirondack Color Washes (redesigned) from Ranger
  • Restock of Tim Holtz Collection Kraft Resist paper stash from Advantus
  • New Tim Holtz Collection ring binders in two sizes from Advantus
  • Restock of Tim Holtz Collection Distress Stains from Ranger
  • Restock of Sketch Markers from Copic
  • New embellishments, trims, chipboard, and papers from Melissa Frances
  • Restock of metal multipacks, Humungo tape sheets, and tools from TENseconds Studio
  • New 6x6 and 12x12 patterned paper from the "Valise" collection by Memory Box
  • New Tim Holtz Collection dies: tree branch, mini labels, and valise from Sizzix
  • Restock of tubes and wands from SRM Designs
  • New handmade paper from Graphic Products
  • Copic Coloring Guide from Auntie's Attic
  • Spellbinders Nestabilities Basics & Beyond from Auntie's Attic
  • Unfurling - a mixed-media workshop with Misty Mawn from Quarry Books
  • Secrets of Rusty Things - transforming found objects into art by Michael de Meng from Northlight
  • Belle Armoire Jewelry (Jun/Jul/Aug 2011)
  • Sew Somerset (Summer 2011)
  • Cloth, Paper, Scissors (May/June 2011)
  • Studio by Cloth, Paper, Scissors (Summer 2011)
  • Somerset Studio Gallery  (Summer 2011)
  • The Stampers' Sampler (Jun/Jul 2011)

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Shop happenings...

Susan Newton is teaching a fabulous all-day workshop this coming weekend called "Creativity - There Must Be 50 Ways to Use this Stamp", a class she originally taught over 8 years ago when The Queen's Ink was located in Crofton, MD. Over and over, we've heard from our loyal royals that this one class was pivotal for them in their stamping hobby as they understood just how much mileage could be gained from a single stamp and a few different techniques/chemicals. With so much change in the industry over the years, Susan delved into the new inks, papers, and processes, and updated the workshop to include even more great information. This will be a workshop to remember for all those fortunate enough to have secured a spot (both sessions offered are now full). A special Thanks to Susan for sharing her expertise with all of us!

Check out the new publications sure to inspire you from Somerset Studio:

  • Take Ten
  • The Stampers' Sampler
  • Somerset Studio Gallery - Summer 2011
  • Artful Blogging - Visually Inspiring Online Journals
  • Art Doll Quarterly
Other products that just arrived:
  • Alcohol Ink from Ranger
  • Restock of T!m Holtz Collection cling stamp sets from Stampers Anonymous
  • Restock of Wendy Vecchi's Art Parts and Clearly for Art Modeling Film
  • Restock of double-sided tear-able tape in a variety of sizes from Rubber Stamp Concepts
  • Inchie Squares in assorted colors from Inchie Arts LLC

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Just in...

Impression Obsession never fails to impress us (ha ha, so punny). Mitra's new wood mounted stamps are always fabulous, and now she's offering very cool cling-mounted background stamps and a new acrylic handle called the "Mega Mount" which has a 6x6 surface area and makes working with the larger images much easier.

Also new from Impression Obsession, we now have the Shaker card overlays and plastic capsules that make creating a Shaker card much easier. No more struggling to build the card - how cool is that?!

Our Zentangle display is looking pretty robust this week, with a restock of all Design Originals Zentangle publications, including the newest ones, "Alpha Tangle" and "Zen Quilting Workbook". Pay us a visit and get your own copy before they fly off the shelf! Patti taught a Zentangle Basics on Tuesday, and an Intermediate Zentangle class is scheduled for early June. Take a look at our Class Schedule, then call us to reserve your spot!

Susan Newton is teaching "Creativity - There Must Be 50 Ways to Use This Stamp!" next weekend, offered both Saturday and Sunday to accommodate our customers' busy schedules. Class size for this all-day workshop is limited to ensure each student gets plenty of attention. The display board in the shop is awesome... come by and see for yourself! The stamp you're going to use is yours to keep at the end of the workshop - cool, huh?

I just updated the Products list on the web... more dies and texture fades from Sizzix Tim Holtz Collection, plus new and restock of stamps and papers from Hero Arts.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

T!m's Stuff...

Our Royal Wedding Reception last Friday night was a resounding success. Patti reigned supreme in the classroom as customers created their own tiaras, plus she was the judge for the hat contest. You wouldn't know that her new knee is only 5 weeks old! She is moving around quite well, and was almost giddy just being back in her domain! She is very appreciative of all your well wishes as she continues to recover.

Susan Newton hosted a make-n-take and we had 30 takers - wow! She taught a card technique that will be repeated over and over by those who learned it.

I'm in the middle of putting out lots of new stuff that has T!m's name on it... boy, is he prolific! In addition to re-orders of his new cling mounted stamps some very popular Sizzix Bigz dies (Jalopy, Tag, Tray), and his Configurations boxes, we now have the tissue tape dispensers, Kraft Glassine Envelopes in two sizes and the Glassine Stash, Grungeblocks, Pen Nibs, Fractured Dolls, and Crowded Attic paper stash. We have also restocked the Distress Ink wall, including re-inkers. Hurry in cuz this stuff won't last long!!!!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

You're invited...

We all want to help the Royal Couple, William and Catherine, celebrate their special day. The Queen and her Court have been eagerly watching the mailbox for our invitation, but sadly, it was apparently lost. No worries...In true royal fashion, we will be hosting an evening soiree to toast the Royals, complete with wedding favors and door prizes and an appearance by our Queen (a.k.a. Patti with a new knee).

In honor of this momentous event, we are having our biggest sale EVER!!

Come dressed for the occasion, eat royal snacks, do a make-n-take project, and have a little retail therapy too! You will also have an opportunity to create your own tricked out tiara. Wear your favorite hat... prizes will be awarded for the best ascot appropriate hat!

Remember... the celebration begins at 5:00 p.m. (okay, so we're about 12 hours late, but Queens do NOT arise that early, so we've been told).

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

New stuff...

The shoppe is hoppin' with lots of new products and cool classes that just say SPRING! Here's to hoping the cold weather is behind us for another 9 months or so.

We continue to chart the Queen's progress as she rehabs her new knee. She actually sneaked in last Sunday for a few minutes to say hello to guest artist Gail Russakov. We were all very glad to see her, especially knowing that it took every ounce of energy she possessed. She is making steady progress, but it will be another month before she's back in the shoppe for any length of time.

Next Friday night, April 29th, we're having our own wedding reception at the shoppe since our Royal invitations from Buckingham Palace seem to have gotten lost in the mail. The Queen herself will make an appearance for some food, fun, and a good sale to mark this auspicious occasion. So grab your tiaras and wallets and head for Savage Mill!

Look at what we've gotten since last week:

  • New "Dylusions" stamp sets by Dyan Reaveley from Stampers Anonymous
  • Restock of Studio 490 stamp sets from Stampers Anonymous  
  • Four wood stamps from Memory Box
  • New 12x12 and 6x6 patterned paper and embellishments from Webster's Pages
  • New Tim Holtz Grid Blox from Advantus
  • New 12x12 double-sided paper and flower embellishments from KaiserCraft 
  • Some of the new Sizzix dies from the Tim Holtz Collection: "Bigz" dies: umbrella man, the big clock; "On the Edge" Gear die, "Movers and Shapers" double heart, crown/fleur de lis, and "Texture Fades" Pocketwatches/Steampunk set and Muse set 
  • New MDF book forms and boxes, 12x12 and 6x6 patterned paper pads from KaiserCraft 
  • Somerset Studio (May/Jun 2011) 
  • Stampers' Sampler Catch Up Issue (Volume 15 - 2011)
  • Where Women Create (May/Jun/Jul 2011)
  • Artful Blogging (May/Jun/Jul 2011)
  • Art Doll Quarterly (May/Jun/Jul 2011)


Friday, April 1, 2011

March went out like a lion...

Well, not really a lion, but it sure is cold out there! We're keeping warm by reworking the displays and stocking our shelves with new stamps, paper, embellies, paints, and supplies.

Check out the new Sizzix dies from the Tim Holtz line and some cool embellishments from Advantus' Idea-ology line. The staggered release schedule is a little disappointing, but I'm sure we'll be seeing plenty of ideas using these products. We expect more in April and May.

One wall of our shoppe is decked out with the new 7 Gypsies products. Wow, such gorgeous papers and journaling tags from the new "Camden" collection! We would love to see what you are doing with these new products... send me a photo.

The Queen continues her grueling rehab, and it won't be long before that new knee is ready to run the marathon (or least walk up the steps into the shoppe). She thanks everyone who has sent well wishes and asked about her.
Stay tuned!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

The Queen's Knee....

The Queen's Knee has been replaced by a new and improved model. After some royal pampering befitting the queen (that she thinks she is), she'll begin her reign in physical therapy land, and have that new knee working perfectly before long. I'll try to keep you updated on her progress.
Meanwhile, back at the shoppe we're putting out the new Stampers Anonymous wood images from the Tim Holtz and Studio 490 collections. Lots of fabulous images to see. We also received new Viva Pearl Pens and InkaGold in a variety of colors.
We welcome Ellen Vargo as our guest instructor for tomorrow night's Two Tag Minimum class. We sure do appreciate her help as well as her talent. If you didn't sign up this month, try to get on the list for April's class (the 15th). We have a lot of fun, and we're amassing quite a collection of cool tags.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Masterboard samples...

Here are some of the amazing results from the Quinky Dinks' masterboard class:

The Thursday Group a.k.a. The Quinky Dinks

Once a month on Thursdays you'll find a friendly group (dubbed the "Quinky Dinks" by loyal customer Bev), in the shoppe's classroom creating art (whatever the Queen chooses), eating, kvetching, and laughing. This class is usually listed as the Mystery Card class (sometimes it's even a mystery to Patti until about a half hour before they arrive), and is open to anyone who wants to enjoy a fun day out with like-minded people. This month, Patti showed them how to create a "Masterboard" which they then cut, tore, and shaped for card and tag backgrounds. It's always fun to see their end products, all so different AND fabulous! (Blogger is experiencing problems right now so I can't show you the finished projects in this posting; however, the next one will have it.)

New products this week:
  • "Moments" magnetic die from the Sizzix Movers & Shakers collection
  • Mini leaf and branch magnetic die from the Sizzix Movers & Shakers collection
  • New ribbon and twisty twine in new colors from May Arts
  • Somerset Life (Apr/May/Jun 2011)
  • The Stampers' Sampler (Apr/May 2011)
  • Haute Handbags (Spring 2011)
  • Somerset Memories (Spring 2011)
  • Jewelry Affaire (Spring 2011)
  • Prims (Spring 2011)

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

March Madness...

We enjoyed a busy, art-filled weekend with Guest Artist Carol Owen teaching "Painting Without Planning" and two Altered Book workshops.

We are now starting to receive products that debuted at CHA, and I urge you to check the Products section of the website on a regular basis since I provide a list of the newest additions to our collection. Our first shipment from Stampers Anonymous included T!m's newest stamp sets as well as new stamps and Art Parts from Studio 490 (Wendy Vecchi). The Queen just told me that Wendy is planning a return visit in October... can't wait to see what she comes up with for those workshops!

We have scheduled some great classes for March, April, and May so make sure you take a moment to check the website for details.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

7 Gypsies "Lillie" Collection

With CHA just around the corner, many companies have offered pre-releases and we've already started receiving them. Just in today from 7 Gypsies is the "Lillie" paper collection which we have in 12x12 double-sided paper and 6x6 and 8x8 paper pads as well as journal cards and paper tape coordinates.

Another new product is the ATC drawer... great for collecting ATC cards, photos, or could be used as a small shadowbox. Take a look!


Last week we put out the "Once Upon A Springtime" paper collection from Graphic 45, and Patti has already had to re-order the 12x12 paper pads... FABULOUS!!!

Stop by regularly as we announce receipt of more new products. The Queen has pre-ordered the new Sizzix dies and texture fades from T!m Holtz, as well as the embellishments he designs for Advantus.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Stampington Pubs have arrived...

It's time to stock up on reading material to keep you inspired through the dull days of winter. The newest Stampington publications have arrived and are waiting for you:

  • The Stampers' Sampler (Feb/Mar 2011)
  • Artful Blogging (Feb/Mar 2011)
  • Where Women Create (Feb/Mar/Apr 2011)
  • GreenCraft (Spring 2011)
  • Art Doll Quarterly (Feb/Mar/Apr 2011)
  • Apron-ology (Volume 3)

Take a look at our class schedules... we have some fresh new offerings and some old favorites. Don't miss a chance to indulge your creative self!