Monday, July 30, 2007

Blah, Blah, Blah

Well, it's only hump day and I'm already exhausted! Just moving in slow motion and not getting as much done these days as I would like. (Do we ever?) I've been crashing early in the evenings and watching Weeds Season Two on dvd. Such a great show.

Popped into a store the other day that I've driven by for years, but have never stopped in. Picked up a few items, all in neutral colors, that I hope to incorporate into my artwork at some point. Old dusty, stained lace is always useful, and the tiny gold leaf wire garland is actually a reproduction, but it looks old. Growing up in a small rural Texas town, I've always had an affinity for wheels and gears of all sorts. I think it'd be cool to have a group of them hanging on the wall. Well, this may be the most boring post ever...hope to have a little more pizazz tomorrow.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Good Monday to You

I'm very excited to be attending Art FiberFest this year and to be taking classes from the uber-talented Pam Garrison. Inspired by her Paper Portraits, I attempted a couple of paper collages and finally finished them this weekend. One has a quote by Beatrix Potter - "Thank goodness I was never sent to school, it would have rubbed off some of the originality." The second collage has a quote about sisters - "You can kid the world. But not your sister." by Charlotte Gray. As the youngest of four, with two older sisters, I can personally attest that, somehow, they do seem to know when something is a little off kilter.

Now I'm off to put together an inspiration package for my Silver Bella swap sister. Hope she likes it.

Happy Monday everyone and don't forget to visit Sandra Evertson's new blog!

Happy Tags

The artist Kris Hurst made these tags for me. I thought it would be fun to have my blog name on them and I'm really happy with the way they turned out. Each one is so unique! I'm a sucker for the little details and Kris really spent time on these - sewing a button here or there, a dash of glitter just so, and giving one of the fairy girls a beaded (hello?!) magic wand. Truly terrific, these tags will probably be strung into a banner and hung in my art room. Thanks Kris! You can see more of her talented work here.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Somewhere Over the Rainbow

Skies are blue,
And the dreams that you dare to dream
Really do come true.

A beautiful rainbow in a pale blue sky today brought a smile to my face and made me think of all the things I have to be grateful for in my life. One of those things is YOU, sweet blog readers. In a year that has been very challenging for me, this blog has given me an opportunity to meet new friends, people who are just wonderfully talented and supportive and kind and helpful. I appreciate you so much. Little things in life matter a lot and your encouragement, through reading the blog or leaving a comment, has, well...made me want to work harder and to have more courage in "putting it out there." When my gremlin (inner critic) comes out (and, oh, is she fierce!) I'll remember your kind words and keep at it. Thanks so much!

Costume Jewelry

I thought I would share some fun pieces of jewelry with you. Last year I saw this post by Alicia Paulson, blogger/artist extraordinaire and thought I would treat myself to a charm bracelet for one of those hard to swallow birthdays. Jodi Bloom of So Charmed makes bracelets, necklaces, pins, and earrings with super cute vintage and new charms. She now has an etsy store as well! I've never seen anything like her work. If you order a custom piece from her, truly a very special gift, she will treat you and your beloved masterpiece with the utmost care and concern. She takes her time and really gets to know you so she can capture the exact vibe you're looking for. It was such a joy working with her; I didn't want the process to end, and I treasure my charm bracelet so much. Each charm holds special meaning for me and reflects a certain essence of my personality. A little like palm reading...analyze the charms and get to know about a person's desires and dreams and history. Hopefully, I'll hand it down to my daughter one day.

Many of you may already know about the fabulous two sisters and mom team called the Junk Gypsies. They have been featured in Country Living and a slew of other home decorating magazines. Hailing from College Station, TX (where I and all my siblings attended college...yeehaw), these stylin' junksters offer loads of flea market inspiration on their website, not to mention some sassy costume jewelry for your inner cowgirl.

These have been around for a while, but are still fun to wear. Dillon Rogers makes leather bracelets and other goodies with positive phrases or symbols on them. You can even have one made with your sweetheart's name on it or a special message of your own. As you can see, I have worn mine out!

This royalty ring was made by the talented Phoenix Forrester of Albuquerque, NM. A vintage porcelain doll head with a silver crown and a big honkin' jewel underneath and you've got a conversation piece with a definite sense of humor. This ring is not for wallflowers!

Another fun website for a little girl in your life or your own inner kiddo is Pancake Meow. Leslie, the creator of these delightful polymer clay charms, will not only let you choose the flavors/colors of your ice cream scoops, she'll let you choose the scents as well. That's right. They are scented! Whether you are a donut with sprinkles, cupcake, or chocolate chip cookie kind of girl, she's got you covered. So fun to wear a sweet treat around your neck in the summertime!

That's what costume jewelry is all about for Something to make me smile and maybe bring a smile to someone else's face. Because, really, isn't that what life is all about?

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

More Vintage Horse Ribbons...

...all decked out in their finest summer frippery and ready to party! These are just so much fun to make. I can't seem to get enough of them! My goal is to make each one unique, with its own little personality. I use rhinestones, ribbons, crystals, glass glitter, and vintage items on each one. Most of the ribbons have the winning horse's name on the back, and they are a little stained (sweat? manure?) and battered...just adds to the charm. It's fun to imagine a horse wearing a wreath of these over-the-top ribbons.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Silver Bells

Ventured over to Paper Planet last Saturday for a journal making class. It's so pleasant to create in this cute little store and smell delicious cake baking all afternoon! (there's a bakery in one half of the store!) Decided to make an album for Silver Bella. It needs to be foofed and glittered up a bit, but I'm diggin' the pink and silver flocked paper. It's wonderful to have an event like Silver Bella to look forward to. I was in Hobby Lobby the other day and they are already putting out their Christmas decorations. Yes, it's definitely ridiculous and reeks of maniacal marketing, but it is kind of handy when we artsy/craftsy types need a little holiday pouf and floof for our projects. Speaking of projects, I'm hoping to make some Christmas frames inspired by this fun find.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Things That Make Me Smile Today

I think I mentioned that I'm not exactly in a lovefest with my current home and have a bad case of new house fever. I confess that I am a clutter creator. I am a lover and collector of stuff, even though I despise the way it makes me feel when I can't find things or there isn't a "home" for things to return to. An internal conflict to be sure and one I have grappled with for several years. But there is one room that still makes me smile. There is this funky shaped (long and narrow) powder bathroom in the house that I decided to just totally play up. Had it painted with bold red and gold stripes and then placed all kinds of mirrors and clocks (only requirement is that they had to have some type of movement, i.e. pendulum or cuckoo). My brother, also a collector and packrat, gave me this weirdly cool plaster face of a well-known actor. Can you guess who it is? (hint: The Shining) Apparently, these are make-up casts of some sort. Not really sure. (My brother has faces of Julia Roberts and the guy who played Herman Munster.) So the bathroom is a mix of Willy Wonka meets Alice in Wonderland meets a carnival fun house! A little freakish. A little garish and curious. (hmmmm....this may be the room that keeps the house from selling!)

Anyway, one of my favorite memories of my grandparents' house is when, every hour (sometimes half hour and quarter hour!) a clock would chime. They had so many antique clocks that it was literally a cacophony of dings, dongs, chimes, bongs, and cuckoos - all going off in successive time. Love that and miss that so much! In a nightly ritual, papa would go around with his keys and wind up the clocks. I guess I was trying to replicate that memory, although my clocks are not antique and don't make any sounds...but for the cuckoo clock - alas, my husband and cat have threatened to walk out if I didn't disable it.

These bars are not new but I have just discovered them. When they are frozen, they are yummmy! A fruity (semi-sort-of-healthy) summer treat.

Summer would not be complete without a breezy, lighthearted tote bag. I have really been enjoying my new summer bag, made from vintage pillow cases. It's sturdy, holds a lot, and weighs nothing. You can order one here.

Did anybody else out there play with Liddle Kiddles? I loved these little dolls made by Mattel. They came in all sorts of containers: soda pop bottles, lockets, tiny rings, perfume bottles. Today, they are highly collectible and pull in a pretty penny on Ebay. I have a few from my childhood that I've put in a shadow box, along with the Fisher Price people and the Weebles. With their big heads and little bodies, they still make me smile today!

I love putting on a fragrance in the morning. Something to set the mood of the day and reflect my intentions and activities. Jo Malone fragrances are my favorite. Her scents are natural (think rose, grapefruit, nutmeg) and they all can be mixed and matched to create your own signature scent. parents have a lakehouse near a very rural, very typical Texas country kind of town. Don't get me wrong. I'm not dissing it...I'm from one of these towns myself and think they are great in their own kitschy kind of way. Well, on one visit, my siblings and I decided to hit the "downtown" and check out the junk stores. My eagle eyed sister spied it first! A white poodle hologram in a funky metal frame. It lights up. It's so realistic and just soooo incredibly campy. Like someone's dear Grandma captured the likeness of her beloved poodle for all posterity. Doesn't go with any of my decor. Don't care. Too much fun...had to have it. And last, but never least, a sleeping Cosmo el Gatto, aka Possum Sue. Hope everyone has a wonderful day with lots of things to make you smile.