How’s Your Handwriting? Good enough for a card… it can be!

Hi friends! I am going to come clean with you and admit that I have lousy handwriting. It is a barely legible half cursive, half printed chicken scratch mess. Anyone reading a handwritten note from me would believe I was a doctor! (OK the only people who will get that joke will have to be old enough to remember when doctors wrote paper prescriptions I guess LOL!) The fact is I don’t take the time I should to write neatly and if  you think about writing as “drawing your letters” you can make them look a lot better!


In today’s video we are going to make a pretty stamped watercolor card with a hand written sentiment that will be pretty enough to impress your 3rd grade cursive teacher! Plus I’ll share my 5 tips for prettier handwriting!

Tutorial sponsored by Rubber Stamp Tapestry! Get FREE USA (All 50 States, Puerto Rico & Guam) shipping on orders of $20+ throughout the month of March with Coupon Code: FRUGALFREESHIPPING New to peg stamping? Become a Peg Stamp VIP here you’ll get an instant coupon for 20% off Rubber Stamp Tapestry stamps plus the deepest weekly discounts available! Coupon only applies to new customers.


Other supplies (Affiliate links used)


5 Tips to quickly make your handwriting look better (and these tips work because I have terrible handwriting!)

1. Make guide lines with pencil.
2. keep the vertical lines of the letters parallel to one another.
3. Try to keep an even space between letters.
4. Press on your pen more on the down strokes to make thicker lines and lift upon the upstrokes for thinner lines.
5. Make the letters look crisper by going over the letters with a fine black fountain pen. Add swirls, loops and flourishes to dress it up with the same black pen.


I also wanted to add some info on the wreath card that I was frustrated with in case anyone like it and wanted to try it. Let me know if you want a tutorial on this and I can do one. Basically I punched a circle and folded it in half a couple of times so it looked like a pie with 8 slices, traced the circle on paper and marked each fold. Then I stamped the jade succulent on every other mark. then I masked and filled in stamping with other succulents repeating them around the circle. It looked too cluttered to me so I scrapped the idea but it would be pretty if it was a bit more sparse I think.


I do think it looks better now that I have stepped away from it. I think when I am getting frustrated by a project I see it with “ugly eyes” and it often looks OK later. What do you think? I hope you try some handwriting on your next card and til next time happy crafting!


LIVE! Fun & Colorful Rainbow Lollipop in Watercolor! 12:30pm ET

Edited to add photo of the finished painting. Have a great weekend!

Picture 154

Hi friends! I got a lot of requests to paint a real-time lollypop after the sketchbook sunday time-lapse twisted lolly I painted a couple of weeks ago so I thought this fun jumbo one would be a fun subject! (Plus if I don’t paint it soon I fear my kids will make it disappear!) Here is the photo (BTW you can buy them at the Dollar Tree!)


You can watch the live show or replay in the player below but if you want to chat with fellow painters or ask me questions live be sure you tune in at 12:30pm ET on the YouTube watch page.


One week left to save 50% on my new class Learn to Draw with Lindsay (Regular $79-sale $39.50) with coupon code DRAWME if the discounted price dosn’t show up automaticaly. (For The drawing class payment plan use coupon code DRAWMEX3, regular price is 3x $30/ price with coupon is 3x $15 with coupon DRAWMEX3)

I am been so heartened by the response to my course so far, the artwork students have shared in the classroom as blown me away! Here is a lovely comment I received the other day:

Hi Lindsay, what a great drawing course. I have been painting for 30 plus years, drawing was my weakest, until now. I’m starting to see things in shape, I think the most helpful is starting with a circle or shape then fill in with the shapes of whatever you are drawing. This has been the best money I have ever spent. What I love I can look at these lessons over & over until I get it!! ~Linda

If you would like to join the hundreds of students who are learning to draw with accuracy and confidence check out Learn to Draw with Lindsay to learn more or enroll today! If there was another class that caught your eye the coupon code DRAWME will take 50% off the one time payment as well but only until 3/31/18.

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PS. I will be adding some bonus lessons in the watercolor classes soon! Keep an eye out for that!

PSS. To use the DRAWME coupon for any of the classes in my school simply click the orange “ADD Coupon” when you checkout:


I hope the little video isn’t silly but I don’t want anyone to miss out and sometimes it’s not obvious where the coupon goes:) Thanks so much for stopping by and I hope to paint with you later! Happy crafting!

Review: Stampin Blends Markers

Hi friends! Today I have a very much requested review for Stampin Blends markers from Stampin’ Up! After posting this on YouTube last night several demonstrators let me know that they are only taking orders through Friday the 23rd (tomorrow) as they are almost sold out so they need to replenish their stock before they sell more. I wanted to put that info out there incase you were waiting on the review to order and you wanted to buy before sale-a-bration was over. I believe they will have them available to order again in a couple of months. Also I miss-spoke in the video, the markers are $4.50 each and not $4. Watch the video to see them in action.


  • 27 colors total (a light and dark shade of the following colors: Bermuda Bay, Calypso Coral, Cherry Cobbler, Crumb Cake, Daffodil Delight, Night of Navy, Old Olive, Pink Pirouette, Pool Party, Pumpkin Pie, Rick Razzelberry and Smoky Slate as well as 3 single colors: Bronze, Ivory and a clear color lifter marker)
  • Price: $4.50 per marker, no discounts for buying in a set
  • Each marker features a brush nib and a bullet nib and printing on the barrel tells you which is which.
  • These markers are available exclusively through your local Stampin Up demonstrator or from their website. This link will take you to my demo Wendy’s website.


  • The colors, as the name suggests, blend beautifully, mainly because the colors are picked out and designed to blend with each other. If you have never colored with alcohol markers before this will take out the guesswork and lessen the learning curve. Here is a demo of me using them.
  • This set has a great range of colors with nothing superfluous, It could use a deep violet however if you glaze over rich razzleberry with the light Night of Navy I think it will do. I like how they picked a limited palette with plenty of color options to get you started.
  • Since all of the markers are available individually you can replace a color as you use it up or build your collection a couple of markers at a time (and it is the same price per marker whether you buy in a set or singles.)
  • Colors are easy to erase with the color lifter (and I am glad they called the clear marker a color lifter instead of the typical “clear blender” as it describes more accurately what this pen does)
  • If you have CSS (Complete Set Syndrome-trust me it’s a thing LOL!) you only have 27 markers to collect as opposed to hundreds in other marker lines.


  • The nib is a felt/fiber type nib and not foam like copics so it is less springy and flexible.
  • You can’t refill the marker or replace the nib.
  • The caps might be a bit tough to snap on and off but they do stay on securely!

Bottom line: I think these markers are priced fairly for the quality. If you are just getting started and you want to take the guesswork out of coloring these are sure to please or if you are an avid user of SU! products these will match.


If you would like to learn more you can ask your Stampin Up Demonstrator for more info or visit my friend Wendy’s website and she’ll be happy to help you.Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

10 Tips for Using Cheap Watercolor Supplies PLUS 5 Reason Cheap Watercolors are Great!

Hi friends! Today I will share some tips and tricks to get the most of inexpensive student grade supplies. You can have fun while using up your student grade stash and learn a lot about watercolor technique too!


See my top 10 tips in action in the video and refer to the list below for a written tip sheet!

My top tips! (This article includes affiliate links)
1. Use student grade color straight from the tube instead of squeezing a bunch out to dry out in a palette. You will get the vibrant result you want without the struggle of rewetting less pigmented paints. Also, often when you let student watercolor dry in a palette the paint cracks and falls out therefore wasting it. Just put a drop of each color you need on a plate when you are ready to paint, you don’t need much and the leftovers can easily be rewet so there is no waste. *The watercolors I am using in today’s demonstration are JoiArt watercolors that are $14.99 for 25 tubes.

2. Practise your brush control. You can use any grade watercolor and paper to practise making thick and thin strokes and learn good brush control. Build your muscle memory with the cheap stuff.

3. Buy a brush once. If taken care of your watercolor brushes can last a lifetime as watercolor is such a gentle paint. It is better to learn with a decent brush because you will always have it. I think a soft and pointy #8 round is an ideal brush to start with. Here are my recommendations:

4. Don’t overmix. Many student paints don’t list the pigments used and many are already mixed colors, that’s why you often make mud when you try mixing these colors. You will probably need to use more colors than you would with professional quality paints.

5. Let the colors mix on the paper rather than mixing on the palette. This will keep you from over mixing and getting a chalky or muddy mess.

Paper tips! Cheap paper is less durable than artist grade paper. It is usually made of wood pulp and often it does not have enough sizing (the material that keeps the paint from feathering.) My favorite cheaper paper to use for practise is actually 100% cotton paper made by Aquabee, it comes in 6″x9″ sheets in #90 and #140 weights and you can get 50 sheet packs for $12-$18

6. Avoid excessive scrubbing or erasing on your watercolor paper to prevent pilling.

7. Work wet on dry. You can keep vibrant colors and crisp edges.

8. When doing a background wash on cheap cellulose paper wet a section at a time then add in your colors one at a time and let them mix on the paper. This prevents part of your paper drying out on you as you complete the wash and it keeps your paint from becoming muddy.

9. Use a dry “thirsty” brush to sop up puddles in a background wash. This allows you to soak up extra water and avoid ruffle edge blooms from appearing.

10. Don’t be afraid to mix your media! If you watercolor painting is lacking the “glow” you desire, add details and shading with wax or oil based colored pencils. This will give you the luminosity can can be hard to achieve sometimes with student grade supplies. You can use ANY brand pencils you have but Prismacolors have been pretty cheap lately and that is what I prefer.

Great things about student quality watercolors:
1. They lift well.
2. They are less likely to feather on cheap paper.
3. You get many colors in a set so you can see what you really use and then only purchase those colors in artist quality as you run out. It will save you money as you only rebuy what suits you.
4. You can paint without fear of wasting precious paint!
5. They are a great way to see if watercolor is for you without a big investment.

I hope this post helps you realize that you don’t have to be rich to get a lot of enjoyment from watercolor! Hmmm, maybe the term “starving artist” came because artists were broke after buying their supplies LOL! It dosn’t have to be that way, use what you have and put paint to paper. After all it’s using the supplies and not owning them that makes you an artist. Let me know what you think in the comments below and til next time happy crafting!

Smart Art February Box Marker Play!

Hi friends! Today we are going to have a peek into the February Smart Art Box.


I am never sure what will come in these boxes but it is always a fun surprise to see what’s inside. I was pleased to see that they has some Chameleon Color Tops because I have the original set of 22 Chameleon pens (think alcohol based blendy-pens for grown-ups) and I struggled with them because they blend light to dark and I tend to work dark to light. I couldn’t resist grabbing my older markers to try with the new tops and I used the combination to make this fun sketch perfect for Easter.


Watch the video to learn more about the supplies in this months box and to see how I sketched a cute Easter chick!


This tutorial was sponsored by Smart Art! Find out more about their art subscription box here. They ship to many countries too! Currently I don’t see any leftover February boxes for sale at Smart Art but if any become available you can find them in the “past projects” section of the website.

I was pleased to see that there were Chameleon Color Tops and a Chameleon Pen in this months box as I had the original set of 22 which I reviewed here.

Below you will find links to the individual products I showcased. Affiliate links used at no extra cost to you. Thank you.

  • I like Chameleon Color Tones, they have an innovative product and the people who work there are lovely. There is a bit of a learning curve to these markers and color tops but they are fun to play with! The Color Tops add a fun new dimension.
  • I really liked the Strathmore marker paper that came in the kit, it is more like a cardstock then the typical thin marker paper most companies sell. If you are also a rubber stamper or mixed media artist I encourage you to try this as it is sturdy enough to go ona card and layer other media on. I also liked that I could use water based markers (and spread the ink with a wet brush) as well as alcohol markers (and lift the color with a blending marker) both equally as well. Most cardstocks are one or the other, this is fabulous! It comes in larger size pads too if you want to make bigger art.
  • Art Alternatives fineliners: These are really inexpensive pens but they write very smoothly and react with water.


I had fun playing with these supplies, I encourage you to try the techniques I shared with the supplies you have at home and if you think a monthly box of surprise art supplies would suit you check out Smart Art Box. Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

Sparkly Ring in Watercolor // Sketchbook sunday…er, Monday?

Hi friends! Every Sunday morning I like to make my coffee and sit at the desk in my office and paint before anyone else is up. I usually listen to a podcast or audio book and just relax and paint whatever I feel like painting at the moment. I have wanted to paint a close up of sparkly jewelry for a few years but never had a “reason” to. Well, Sketchbook Sunday gives me a reason to just paint what I want just for fun!


You can watch a time-lapse with instructional voice over below. I hope you enjoy it!

Want more drawing help? Check out my new class Learn to Draw with Lindsay! BEST DEAL Save 50% (Regular $79-sale $39.50) Use coupon code DRAWME if discount isn’t shown, coupon good through 3/31/18. (For a payment plan use coupon code DRAWMEX3, regular price is 3x $30/ price with coupon is 3x $15 with coupon DRAWMEX3)

Supplies: (Affiliate links used at no extra cost to you)


What are you working on in your sketchbook? I’d love to know! If you liked this tutorial please consider sharing it using one of the sharing links below. Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

Hurray for Crochet! YOU can Learn it!

Hi friends! Today I have a very basic video to get you started in crochet! Like anything it can seem intimidating to look at a complex garment or pattern but when you take it stitch by stitch it’s easy. In today’s video I will go through the basic stitches slowly and below the video you will see an index of the time each stitch or technique appears so if you need to return to that stitch you can find it easily.

Sponsored by Annie’s Hook and Needle Kit Club! Join today and pay $9.99 for your first kit and get the basic stitching guide free!

*Please note in this video I am using American crochet terms. I will put British pattern crochet terms in parentheses below next to the American term. How can you tell if a pattern is uses American or British terms? If you see a Single Crochet (SC) in a pattern it is an American pattern. If a pattern asked you to “miss” a stitch rather than “skipping” a stitch there is a good chance it’s British.

Time Stamped Techniques:
1. How to read a yarn label: 2:37

2. What end of the yarn to use: 4:49

3. How to make a slip knot: 5:31

4. CH=How to make do the chain stitch aka foundation chain 6:11 (same in UK)

5. SC=Single Crochet 8:49 (in UK Double Crochet)

6. HDC=Half Double Crochet 12:50 (In UK Half Treble Crochet)

7. DC=Double Crochet 15:17 (in UK Treble Crochet)

8. TR=Treble Crochet 18:14 (in UK Double Treble Crochet)

9. Fasten off 22:27 *After fastening off you would use a yarn needle to weave in the ends but the ends can also be used for stitching up seams or sewing on embellishments so I wait until a project is complete before weaving in ends.

10. Slip Stitch 22:50 (same in UK) *This versatile stitch can be used to connect pieces of crochet fabric, join rounds or neatly finish the edge of a project. Here it is shown in a contrasting color but if you want to camouflage wobbly edges of a scarf than use the color your made the scarf with. You can use this same technique to add novelty yarn trim to any knit or crochet project too!

11. Magic Ring or Magic loops technique for flowers, rosettes or starting rounds 24:36

12. Changing yarn colors 27:03

13. Bonus Tip, to make a flower work a pattern of short-tall-short stitches in a single stitch. Repeat around ring. 27:38

14. Traditional way to make a loop to begin a round using a chain and slip stitch 30:05

Now you have the basics! You can use a combination of these stitches to create elaborate patterns and laces for lots of toys, garments and accessories! The only limit is your imagination.
Ready for more? Here are a few more tutorials you might find useful!

Thanks for visiting with me today! I hope you give this a try and consider checking out Annie’s Hook and Needle Kit Club, you’ll get your first kit for $9.99 (50% off !) and the basic stitching guide for knit and crochet. Future kits are only $19.99 plus $5.95 p&p USA ($6.95 in Canada) and come with a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee: If ever you are not absolutely delighted with any kit for any reason, you may return it within 21 days and owe nothing. Big thanks to Annie’s for sponsoring today’s video and thanks to you for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

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