Exotics Flowers and Places: Mixed Media Art Journal

Visiting Exotic Places

Peonies are beautiful flowers that are sometimes mistaken for roses. And they are one of my favorite flowers along with the Bird of Paradise, Orchids and the Lotus. I happen to have a thing for unusual and exotic things and that runs in flowers as well. Peonies are native to Asia and whenever I see them, I think about far off places that I would love to visit.


Speaking of far off places, my hubby and I visited Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania last weekend. While It wasn’t far away in distance, it was far off in culture. I grew up in the suburbs of Philadelphia. While it wasn’t rural, things were spread far enough apart that we had to take a car every where. We currently live in a rural area and if you aren’t careful, you might hit a cow or an Amish buggy while driving too fast on those windy back roads. And while I may be a city girl compared to my hubby, I definitely prefer our current situation to that in the city. Not only is it really loud but there are so many people. Me, being the skeptic that I am, am very un-trusting of people. Especially those running after you with a sad story, begging you for money. Yes, this happened on our trip. And it scared me. Particularly when the guy kept saying, “I’m not going to hurt you.” I have no problem with helping people out, but that guy’s story had too many inconsistencies to be true.


I enjoyed the time away with my hubby and the little bit of culture that we experienced. And the food was A-M-A-Z-I-N-G. But to be honest, I could do without the city. I can get my culture fill by shopping online and reading blogs. And there are no scary people involved.

Creating the Journal Layout

My background is patterned paper. I used the Art Deco Peacock Feather Stencil with texture paste and embossed over top. I also stenciled the Collage Textures and Patterns, Circles with black gesso and a white pen.



I sprayed with a few different colors in the background. The beautiful Peony stamp was colored with Fresco Finish Paints, fussy cut and layered over fiber cloth.



All the stamps and focal image are by PaperArtsy (with the exception of the Peony).


Tea Day

While we were shopping in Pittsburgh’s Strip District, I found the Allegany Coffee and Tea Exchange. I purchased this yummy White Spicy Peach Tea and have been drinking it since. It has a light taste due to the white tea but a spicy flavor from the cloves, allspice and cinnamon.  It was a delicious tea despite it’s lack of peach flavor. Now I wish I had purchased more teas. If we ever go back I will be sure to visit and stock up.

I am joining all the Tea Ladies over at Elizabeth and Bleubeard‘s for T Day.

Thanks for looking!


Challenges Entered:


Simon Says Wednesday: Anything Goes

Simon Says Stamp Monday: Stamp On It

The Artistic Stamper: Going Round and Round

We Love to Create: Anything Goes

Stamps and Stencils: Industrial/Grungy


23 thoughts on “Exotics Flowers and Places: Mixed Media Art Journal”

  • I am with you-no big big city for me either. I love your textures ion your art page-and Ialways enjoy seeing your teas Happy T

  • I have never been to Pittsburgh area but Philly, yes and they sound the same to me. Glad you enjoyed some time away and had wonderful food despite that scary stranger that approached you-yikes! fab journal pages with your usual oodles of layers and rich colors! Happy T day!

  • It is fabulous mixed media journal page Kate. the texture looks amazing and the colours are lovely. Peonies are beautiful flowers, we have dark red ones in the garden, but they only last days before the petals fall.
    Your trip sounds really interesting, I wouldn’t like being pestered by strangers either. I much prefer the country area we live in.
    Your new tea blend sounds lovely as well.
    Happy tea day wishes.
    Yvonne xx

  • I’m definitely a city girl, and like the sights and sounds of an urban environment. That said, I like a wooded countryside, too 🙂 The tea/coffee shop looks interesting. Over 40 varieties of tea! Wow! Your choice looks good 🙂 Happy T Tuesday

  • Oh Kate, I can definitely relate to your woes. I had always lived in a small town until I was accepted into a doctoral program at Wichita State University. When I knew I was moving here, it took me forever to find a home I could be comfortable in. Many of the places the realtor showed me were just not right. Then I found my home, which was older, but had been completely remodeled and was like moving into a brand new home, but in a well established older neighborhood. To make it even more attractive, it is separated by two rivers and there are only two ways to get into the area. It’s a bit like living in a gated community without the association fees or ridiculous requirements (like how you can paint your house, etc.). I had planned to move when I graduated, but actually fell in love with the area. It doesn’t feel like the biggest city in the state to me, because where I live there are neighbors next to me, but I actually prefer that. Since I live alone, it’s good to know I have friends next door I can rely on. My foodie friend Sally will give money to anyone with a sob story. I don’t know if it’s because she’s older and has become more compassionate, but I am a true skeptic when it comes to these crazies who stop you on the street a=or at a stop sign. In a way, I hope I never change.

    I absolutely adore peonies, so this beautiful spread touched my heart. I love the layers and the really different colors you chose.

    That tea sounds wonderful. I am a big fan of white tea and know how much more healthy it is for you. Thanks for sharing your incredible trip to PA, your gorgeous exotic flowers mixed media entry, and your fabulous tea with us for T this Tuesday. Sorry I was late visiting. Add to that the fact I sprained my right wrist on Monday trying to catch a pan that fell from my hand, and now I’m typing with one hand.

  • Your journal pages are stunning, love all the layers and colours. Glad you were able to get away for a weekend,, but it must have been good to be back home where you live now. Happy T Day, hugs, Valerie

  • i grew up in a rural region, lived in a city (munich) in my student years, but my work as a teacher brought me back to the countryside. and today i´m so happy about it (and it is the best to grow kids!).
    peonies are quite common here, but i have no luck growing them in my garden, wrong soil i think. i really love them, and one day in autumn i went to the botanical garden in munich (they have many!) just to photograph their seed pods… they are gorgeous, too! (as i love the seed pods of lotus;))
    and your spread is wonderful, too! i see autumn approaching also in your colors:) xox

  • I am with you, can’t imagine to live in mega cities. I am happy to have left Vienna 7 years ago and am a happy countryside girl now. I adore your rich and so elegant and multilayered style and those pages are just brilliant ! They are so wonderful and I think they would fit Yvonne’s theme at Art Journal Journey, “A World of Fantasy” just perfectly! Maybe you want to add it to our collection?! ♥
    And wow the tea sounds wonderful and such a fantastic shop is on the other side a great benefit of a large city. But better just to go for a visit and shopping tour there!
    Happy T-Day!
    Hugs, Susi

  • That is a gorgeous exotic looking spread Kate. Love it. I am not a city girl, but I do like a visit on occasion because there’s lots of thing you can only see in the city. I had a crazy day and am behind for T day. Hope yours was happy. Hugs-Erika

  • Oh wow this is fantastic ! so many gorgeous elements and textures.
    The tea shop sounds fab. I am a total country girl, I was born and raised in the city but never more happy than when im in the country.
    Thanks for sharing with us at Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge Blog.
    Have a great day 🙂

  • The rich jewel colours here are fabulous – the perfect transition from summer to autumn. Beautiful, textural work as always. The tea sounds delicious too!
    Alison x

  • Such beautiful pages! I love the stencils and pretty peony stamps 😁. They are such magnificent flowers, I am currently looking for a tree peony for our front garden 😁. Cities aren’t top of my list to visit either, we prefer semi rural, maybe a nice town or village near to some countryside and nature too 😉. Your tea sounds just my thing, I always love visiting you on T Day to see what tea you are drinking as you have the most amazing selection, thet always look and sound so delicious – yum! Happy Tea Day wishes! J 😊 x

  • Lovely layers and textures on your journal pages, Kate! And the colours are wonderful! I’m with you, one weekend a year in a big city for visiting my favourite shops and galleries is enough for me. Our town has a population of around 60,000 people and although there isn’t the hustle and bustle of big city living, sometimes it still feels too much. Living in the country sounds idyllic!

  • I adore your mixed media! Working on a mixed media piece myself for Halloween.. I like to visit the city but have never wanted to live there.. But then i haven’t run in to any scary homeless people either.. I usually carry some bottled water and granola bars to give them.. if they don’t want that then they are out of luck. Sorry i’m so late to T this week! Cathca next week! Hugs! deb

  • Kate I totally understand your distain for the city, and for people begging, it makes you sceptical when you see folk scamming on YouTube pretending to be down and out…and even worse, pretending to be crippled, and then going home to their lovely life!!!. Anyway…on to your beautiful project, so much lively interest and beautiful layers and textures, a real feast for the eyes. Thank you so much for joining in the artistic stamper challenge x

  • What a fabulous journal spread!
    I must admit to liking cities, although we usually take detours around busy streets to get to parks or museums etc! I do prefer the countryside though, brought up in a farming community with lots of lone bike rides to take!! Have a great week! Chrisx

  • I grew up in a city and studied in a city but after a couple of years of marriage we moved to a small town/large village in rural Italy. (that was in the 70s) . I also lived in Bristol , a city but not huge. (less than a million inhabitants) and we lived right on the edge of the outskirts overlooking the hills. Lovely. I don’t like the city anymore. When I was a teenager it was great, but now I keep away and love it when I come back to our village after being away.
    Your page is beautiful!
    The tea soulds really nice. I like the spices in my tea.
    Sorry I am late in commenting. (Better late than never), but we are rather busy packing and getting everything ready for our road trip.
    Belated Happy T-Day,

  • Sorry for your scary experience with the beggar (scam artist?) , Kate. When I worked in NYC, I learned quickly not to stop and listen to long tales of woe or beggars that are aggressive. Just walk away. Trust your instincts. Your intuition, combined with your common sense, can keep you out of trouble. There are plenty of ways you can safely help the poor and I’m guessing you do, because the Pittsburgh experience disturbed you.

    Your peonies are beautiful and I love the many layers and textures in your background. The side view really shows the 3D effects well. I just want to reach in and feel the elements.

    Belated happy T-day! Hugs, Eileen

  • Kate what a gorgeous journal spread! I love the grunge to it. And the stencils you chose are some of my favorites!
    I am a peony lover as well and yours look so lovely on the page,pooping out from the background!

    Your tea sounds delish and now you have inspired me to vist a local tea shop!
    Happy weekend Kate!
    Jackie xo

  • Amazing color and texture! I love these pages. Thank you so much for playing along with us in the Stamp It on Challenge over at the Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge Blog this week 🙂

Leave a Reply to Deb Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *