Category Archives: Connection

Roben-Marie Smith Design Team Blog Hop


Today kicks off the Roben-Marie Smith Design Team Summer Blog Hop with a Twist. We have the usual art inspiration and giveaways, but the twist is that there is also a SALE!

There is another twist; Roben-Marie will be closing Paperbag Studios and her Art Shop at the end of July. Read more about it in this article here.

Keep reading after my Mini Wall Hanging Tutorial for all the AMAZING Blog Hop Details!

Mini Wall Hanging

Initially when I sat down to create this project I envisioned a pin.  But somehow along the way I decided that a mini wall hanging with yummy dyed ribbon would be so much better.

I began by gathering all my supplies.  These included:

  • I’ll Wait For You Art Pops Collection
  • Mixed Media Essentials Paperbag Studios Stamp Set
  • Black Staz On Ink
  • Mini Archival Ink – Teal & Purple
  • Random Frayed and Torn Pieces of Material
  • Mindy Lacefield True Free Spirit Stamp
  • Mini Alphabet Stamps
  • Dyed Ribbon
  • Scrap Canvas Pieces
  • Fusible Web
  • Epoxy
  • Sewing Machine

Step 1: Iron the scrap pieces of fabric and attach fusible web to the back of the largest piece of fabric.  This will be your base.  My base was a piece of denim from my old favorite pair of capri pants.  What does the fusible web do you ask?  Well, it makes your base a bit sturdier.  Will felt work if you don’t have fusible web?  I believe it will.  You will have to attach it to your large piece of fabric somehow.  I am a big fan of epoxy.  That will work.

Step 2; Arrange your fabric into layers.  Do not worry about them matching perfectly.  Let the strings hang off.  Over lap each piece of fabric.  This is your project – the wonkier the fabric layers – the better.  Trust me! Fray those edges.  Pull those strings!


Step 3: Add your Art Pop Card right on top of your layers and sew them all together.  Make sure you catch all the fabric pieces and run them through the sewing machine at least once.  If you’ve followed me for a while you know – I don’t stitch straight lines.  Neither should you here.  Stitch away – let the machine do the work.  Change the thread if you’re ambitious.

Step 4: Using Black Staz On Ink – stamp your image on to your piece of scrap canvas.

Step 5: Cut out your image.

Step 6: Pick a word or phrase.  I often use tiny alphabet sets for my words.  For this wall hanging I used a Mindy Lacefield stamp for the True and then a mini stamp set for the word friend.  The possibilities are endless when it comes to your words and phrases.  My inspiration for these words came from knowing that this was my last design team project and I wanted Roben-Marie to know how much I really appreciated her confidence in me.  Choose the words that mean something to your own heart.

Step 7: After stamping, I stitched all around the center of the flower and attached my True Friend tag.  I love using different colored thread so I often switch thread colors.

A slight disclaimer here – Attaching the ribbon on both the top and the bottom of the wall hanging took a few tries.

Step 8: I attached the ribbon with tiny dots of epoxy to hold them into place down at the bottom of the wall hanging.  I really couldn’t get the pins to sit correctly down there so one tiny dot of epoxy and I sewed in a crooked line back and forth a few times to ensure those little ribbons weren’t going anywhere.

Step 9: Now this was the tricky part….I cut strips of ribbon and folded them in half.  The closed end I pinned to the top of the wall hanging.  This left the two pieces up top open to tie to my stick. I then stitched right across to attach those ribbons.

Step 10: I placed a small stick through the ribbon and tied little knots to hold it into place.  You may have to play with this a bit to make sure it hangs evenly.  A friendly tip:  Use long pieces of ribbon.  You can always trim after you tie them….um, the ribbon doesn’t grow no matter how hard you wish… least that’s what “I heard from a friend…” Ha Ha.

And Ta-Dahhhhh…You have a mini wall hanging.  I hope you enjoyed this step out tutorial and look forward to seeing what you create with your mixed media art.  Make sure you visit all the Design Team blogs and enter to win some fabulous prizes.

This last project is bittersweet for me.  I am humbled and honored to have been a member of Roben-Marie’s Design team.  I have grown tremendously as an artist and am so thankful to Roben-Marie for asking me to be a part of such a wonderfully talented group of ladies.  My heart will forever be grateful that I had an opportunity to work so closely with such amazing artists.

And now for all the amazing blog hop details….

Grand Prize: One winner will receive a spot in Roben-Marie’s latest workshop: SALVAGED: a Layered Pieces Journal and a signed and dated original abstract collage by her.
Three Secondary Prizes: gift certificates for an additional 30% off in your choice of the Paperbag Studios or Art Shop.

Be sure to visit the other blogs in the hop and leave a comment to increase your chances of winning the discount!

All you have to do to enter is comment on this blog post and then keep on hopping across to all of the Design Team member’s posts, leave a comment on them and be entered with more chances to win. Giveaway closes on Sunday, July 15 @ 9:00PMEST. Prizes will be announced on Monday, July 16.

Here are the links to all of the amazing Design Team Projects so be sure to visit all of them, leave a comment and increase your chances of winning!

Jenni Zmuda – Click Here
Ashli Oliver – Click Here
Anna Friesen – Click Here
Torrie Gass – Click Here
Cindy Gilstrap – Click Here
Kristin Petersen – Click Here
Sue Kemnitz – Click Here
Laurie Haley – Click Here

Appreciation Apparel is My Jam


It’s no secret that I’m a huge fan of apparel wear.  T-shirts and sweatshirts are my everyday uniform.  Apparel with a purpose however makes my heart do cartwheels.  I love apparel with a message.  Friends – let me introduce you to Work Social Co.  Created by Marc Bennett this apparel company not only has a stylish line of trucker hats (I love the grey and royal blue) and t’s – their message of “Work Hard. Live Simple. Be Happy” is one of sheer positivity and gratitude.  Take a minute and watch the video on the home page.  You’ll be touched right away by the message of living every day with a grateful heart.  Marc to me is a perfect example of someone living a Soul-Positive life.  You cannot be anything but uplifted listening to Marc speak about the appreciation he has for his life.  You can learn more about Marc and Work Social Co. here.  Follow Marc’s journey via Instagram and Facebook.

We all have the power to change the world friends.  It begins with our very own heart.  Living a life of gratitude allows you to focus on the positive of every day.  Negativity has no place to live when your heart is filled with gratitude.

  Hope you’re having a Soul-Positive Week! xoxo

Exciting News: A Rebirth



Although I have not been writing about things in a timely manner, there are wonderful happenings over here at Soul-Positive.

A bit of background: With the growth of the #taggedbykindness project – I found myself at a crossroads.  I had received numerous requests to purchase my tags and to have the project shared.  This excited me as well as frightened me do death.  I didn’t have a crystal clear vision of where I wanted Soul-Positive or the #taggedbykindess project to go.  I saw bits and pieces and dreamed big for the future but how the heck was I going to tie it all together without freaking out?   How could I marry the two of these entities together without having overlap and probably mass confusion .  I needed baby steps and it seemed like things were moving incredibly fast. < Insert deep breath here.>

The most important aspect of all this was how to continue sharing #taggedbykindess while still maintaining the integrity of the project and not having it stolen right out from under me.  Sadly these things do happen and the more the word spread of #taggedbykindess, the greater the risk of losing control of the project growth or losing the project altogether.  From the very beginning I wanted the #taggedbykindness project to be a random act of kindness initiative where the only profit was that of positive vibes exchanged between the giver and the receiver.  I do realize that not everyone is “artistic” or “crafty” and many of my close friends were asking how they could purchase these tags to giveaway.  This left me scratching my head.  Is it wrong to make tags and sell them?  Would this be “selling out”?  Several friends suggested that I at the very least be compensated for the materials.  Is the integrity of the project going to be compromised by this?  Yes – as you can see I am an over thinker.  This is not always a bad thing.

So after much thought and a consultation with a patent attorney, I have decided to move forward with a few changes.  The biggest change is the name of the kindness project.  I will no longer be using #taggedbykindness as the project name.  Please allow me to introduce to you “The #Soulpositivefinds Kindness Art Project”.  This new name fits nicely under the big umbrella of Soul-Positive.  I thought long and hard over the new name and came to the conclusion that when I started this journey my focus was exploring different ways to keep my soul positive. My little random act of kindness project has grown (and I have grown in the process).  I felt that this project needed to be linked to the overall mission of Soul-Positive. The new hashtag is #soulpositivefinds.

What is the mission of Soul-Positive?  The mission remains the same as it did a few years ago.  I want to continue to find ways to keep my soul positive when there seems to be an overwhelming amount of negativity swirling about in the universe.  I, like most of the people I know want a full, happy life.  I want to love hard.  I want to be loved.  I want to make a difference.

February 25 175

“Rosie” – Singer Featherweight

In addition to the kindness project name change….I have also reopened my Etsy store which is also called Soul Positive Finds.  See what I did there? In the shop you will find find art tags that are hand made with love, light and positive intention.  These tags are not a part of the #soulpositivefinds project.  These tags are more detailed and additional work is involved in the creation process.  These mixed media altered art tags are more a spiritual talisman of positive light and intention. I believe strongly in the power of words.  The art tags are hand painted, stamped and stitched on Rosie my Singer Featherweight machine.  In the future I will be adding small tag making kits and original canvas art as well as some t-shirts and tanks.

My work with the #soulpositivefinds project will continue.  I plan on sharing with more schools and community organizations in my area. I invite you to continue to share this project with others.  Please use our new hashtag – #soulpositivefinds.  If you are interested in having me come and share the project or if you need stamped tags please let me know.  I will gladly schedule a visit or send you blank tags that are stamped with our new name.  If you would like some tags made for you or for your group – please contact me through the Etsy shop. Or drop me a line here at Soul-Positive.

I’d like to take this opportunity to thank all of you who have joined me on this journey.  I never knew what to expect when I decided to open myself up and start actively working towards making Soul-Positive a reality.  You’ve encouraged me to dream big.  I am blessed to be surrounded by such a supportive community and for that my heart is immensely grateful.


Hits, Misses and a New Word for 2016


As I sit here the house is quiet except for the sound of the refrigerator motor humming.  I love mornings like this.  The quiet calm before the house awakens with immediate energy.

I am happy to finally have a chance to quietly reflect on my personal accomplishments from 2015:

  • The birth of Soul-Positive
  • Creating the  #taggedbykindness Project
  • The discovery of a new creative outlet through mixed media art
  •  Experiencing new artistic techniques
  • Welcoming vulnerability through open sharing of my creative endeavors
  • Embracing new adventures
  • Choosing positive self acceptance on a more regular basis
  • Letting go of perfection and embracing imperfection

Along with accomplishments comes the acknowledgment of tasks left undone.  In order to continue moving forward and keeping the momentum of personal growth – I looked at these tasks and reflected also on why they are still on my to do list:

  • Regular blog posts (missed this mark big time)
  • Setting up an Etsy shop
  • More physical activity
  • Completing prompts and online classes in a timely manner if at all
  • Reading more books
  • Controlling every situation (will always be a work in progress)

I know now after careful reflection that I need to work on my time management skills.  I need to refine my skills in the area of clarifying goals.  I need to confront fear head on and ask myself “what are you so afraid of?” And most importantly I need to give myself permission to fail and then dust myself off and rise again.

I’m looking forward to 2016.  The start of a new year gives me the kick in the pants I need to set new goals and put a plan of action into place.

As many of you know I have been a part of the One Little Word (OLW) Community for a few years now.  OLW is a year long monthly prompt driven workshop created by Ali Edwards.  You can learn more about this project here.

In 2015 my word was “Momentum”.  This was a wonderful choice and it really gave me a positive outlook into what I wanted to accomplish this past year.

For 2016 I have chosen the word “Step”.  I am looking forward to the many aspects of what “step” has in store for me.  My goal is to step up when faced with hard truths and tough decisions. Step up to more self acceptance and self care.  Step back from relationships that do not enhance my own personal growth.  Step back and listen instead of always needing to be heard.  Step out physically for walks, hikes, kayaking and bicycling to clear my mind, bring me inner peace and bring me back to center.

I hope you take a moment before the stroke of midnight and pat yourself on the back for showing up in 2015, fighting the hard fights and embracing all the good and even some of the ugly.  Thank you for being a part of my journey this year.  Wishing you all the very best that 2016 has to offer and more!