Lately I’ve been inspired by the blogsĀ Scout’s Honor Co., Zentangle, and my neighbor Bridget’s daily paintings. I helped plan a baby shower for a close friend this past week and had a ton of fun putting together some striped-themed paper goods over the past month.

First I brainstormed stripes with a black pen, and when I got a pattern I liked, I filled it in with shades of green and blue:

The invitation used this pattern and looked something like this:

A few weeks later I started putting together some favors. I wanted this to be a fairly stress-free endeavor, but my “make this stress-free” skills are lacking. I have a little stamp that says “mini thanks,” and I wanted to use it with some miniature candy in little cellophane bags. So I painted freehand stripes, in shades of blue and green again, on a big piece of paper:

I cut the paper into label-sized pieces:

And I stamped each one, lovingly:

Finally each label got stapled onto a bag filled with mini M&Ms (I am so clever):

Since this was an open house-style baby shower, there weren’t any games (thank goodness) or major activities to plan. Instead, I prepared some index cards for people to write advice for the mother-to-be. They didn’t get used, but I thought they were awfully fun. I took them home for myself – is that ok?

The last thing I did was get some blank thank you cards for the mother-to-be to send out. I didn’t take a picture, but they looked pretty similar to everything else here.

I would have liked to do more of the black lines and patterns from the invitation, but I learned that my pen wasn’t waterproof and I never had a chance to buy a better pen. I’ve been experimenting a lot with different brushes and paints to try figuring out how things work. My sketchbook is filling up! I love this. It’s nice to feel a little more at peace with myself by not expecting perfection, but by simply enjoying what I’m doing.