Stringless but happy.

While my daughter is staying with us, I’ve been teaching her the joys of Zentangle. I’ve recently bought the Tangle Patterns book from and then today I bought another one from This gives me a really good library to work from and I’m trying out patterns that are not my favourites. I don’t know why it is, but I feel mildly virtuous to be stepping outside my comfort zone. No, I know it doesn’t make sense, since only I know or care but there you are, that’s how it feels.

In addition, my daughter is now well and truly hooked and, since we are not alike in many ways, she is attracted to different patterns , draws them well and then I want to have a go. It’s not exactly competitive and yet…  However, she hasn’t really taken to using strings, preferring using templates, like the ones on Ornation Creation, to fill in with Tangles. Yesterday, we had a look through some of the digital images I have on my computer and found the Katy Sue Designs Flights of Fantasy and Fab Fashion CDs and I printed some off to see how they worked with Zentangle instead of colour.

This is my first one, drawn on A5 paper, with a view to doing some Dangles a la Joanne Fink across the top. Well, that was the intention but we forgot  and I cut it down to a square before I remembered what I’d intended. Age does terrible things to short term memory.

Using a digi stamp from the Flights of Fantasy CD from Katy Sue designs.
Using a digi stamp from the Flights of Fantasy CD from Katy Sue designs.

I coloured it with water colour pencils and gelly roll glazed pens and I’m reasonably pleased with it, except – well there’s always an “except” – the mane, which is just a bit too bold against the rest. Dammit!  Anyway, I think I’ll use some more of these digi stamps.

This is what Rachel ( came up with.

Bird 1 Rachy Yes, first attempts, makes you sick, doesn’t it?  Horse 1 Rachy

She’s much neater and tidier with them than I am. Don’t know where she gets that from – must be her Dad.

I actually started her off on a Zendala and she liked that, although mine was not a success because I chose the wrong patterns to juxtapose and there just wasn’t enough contrast between dark and light.  Here’s her Zendala, mine’s in the bin! So, it’s Zentangle with no strings attached, so to speak.

Zendala 1 Rachy Good, isn’t she? (Proud mum syndrome kicking in!)

However, at the same time as I started the set I posted last time,  I started a little flower picture. Unfortunately, but not surprisingly, I messed up the stems and threw it sulkily  on one side. Then, last night, with my Zendala in the bin, I pulled out the discarded sketch and decided I liked the shapes and that it was worth an attempt at rescue.

Eh bien, le voici, named, in a brief but pathetic attempt at wit – toolips, the finished product.

Toolips. Really enjoyed doing this one.
Toolips. Really enjoyed doing this one – eventually.


It’s on a very textured water colour paper, using Sakura Microns for the drawing, Promarker pens for the base colours and water colour pencils for a bit of intensity at the end. For what it’s worth, one of my better attempts.


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