Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Cosmo Tries the Crib

This is how Jim and I get our kicks. After the crib was assembled, we just had to try it out and who better than Miss Priss herself. She thinks it's a little over the top for a cat bed and was wondering where the crunchy dispenser was but, overall, she approved. Now, if only the onesies would fit her. Happy Halloween, everybody!!

Monday, October 29, 2007

Maxine's Floral & Gift

Another highlight of ArtFiberFest was my trip to Maxine's Floral & Gift in Seattle. What an amazing store! Proprietress Maxine Nicklos, pictured above, along with Michael Peterson, designer extraordinaire and upcoming ArtFest instructor, are the magicians behind this magical candyland of a shoppe. Filled with beautiful, whimsical gifts and artful vignettes at every glance, it's easy to forget you are in a full service floral shoppe. Maxine is warm, generous and truly talented. Her shoppe is a must see!

Maxine's Floral & Gift
8811 Roosevelt Way NE

Seattle, WA 98115

tel: 206-523-4200

Sew Fabric Journal - ArtFiberFest

Here are some pics of what I made in Pam's Sew Fab(ric) Journal class. I was a little out of my element in this workshop although I thoroughly enjoyed it. I brought along my portable Sew Mini machine. It was my first time using it and I was still trying to figure out how to thread the needle and bobbin, etc. The class had 25 participants which was huge for ArtFiberFest numbers. Many of the women were accomplished seamstresses who made the most beautiful creations. Picture a room full of laughter and Edward Scissorhands activity with fabric flying at every station and you'll get an image of the day. Although it was a challenge for me (nicked my finger with my new scissors and bled on my fabric right away AND asked the ever patient Pam about 50 times how to tie a French knot and still didn't master it) I ended up kind of liking the finished product. Of course, I've got baby on the brain and plan to use this as a baby journal. This is the back cover.
This is the inside. If you look, you will see all the imperfections and how the entire fabric book is lopsided. The miracle of the day was that I left with all ten fingers still intact and didn't manage to break my little machine. All in all, it was great fun and I'm glad I pushed myself out of my comfort zone a bit. With so many gorgeous fabrics and trims out there, it's very tempting to try to get better at this craft. Meanwhile, I am madly working on my Silver Bella swaps. Stay tuned for a sneak peak!

Paper Portraits - ArtFiberFest

My favorite class of ArtFiberFest was Paper Portraits taught by Pam Garrison. The piece above was made by Pam. It's so sweet...just perfect for a nursery. Pam is such a patient and easygoing instructor. She has a knack for making everyone feel comfortable no matter what their skill level. The two below were made by me. I was trying very hard to channel Pam. I love the process of sewing on paper and adding all the vintage wallpaper and delicate ephemera to the canvas. There is a sweetness and a fragility to these paper portraits that I really like. I definitely plan on making more of these in the future.


Back from ArtFiberFest and had a wonderful time. This was my second ArtFiberFest (kind of crazy for a girl who doesn't sew) and my first time visiting Port Townsend, WA. It was just as Teesha described - scenic and natural and quaint. And, yes, I saw deer, multiple times, ambling across the street with not a care in the world. ArtFiberFest has considerably fewer participants than ArtFest - about 100 or less so it is quite intimate and easy to navigate. I actually haven't attended ArtFest yet, but have no doubt that I will one day. I took three classes. The first was Faerie Fashionista from Denise Warner. The class was enjoyable and I was thrilled to meet a fellow classmate whose work I have long admired - Marilyn Huskamp. Using various fibers and types of thin handmade papers, we fashioned fairy dolls. Unfortunately, I forgot my camera and didn't get to snap the other participants' beautiful creations. I, on the other hand, just wasn't feelin' the love for my own two dolls. I like dolls but making them just really isn't my cup of tea. The fairy wings are made out of...get this...sausage casing material. How weird is that? I really debated leaving these dolls in my room but ended up stuffing them in my carry-on at the last minute. But, sadly, they are destined for the trash can. I firmly believe that not every creation needs to be saved and these must live on in spirit in the fairy afterlife. I will post about my other classes and adventures later this week!

EDGE to edge

If you've been an attendee of ArtFest or ArtFiberFest or a visitor to Port Townsend, Washington, you're probably no stranger to EDGE to edge, the cutest vintage fabric shoppe in town. Proprietors Joan Wenske (pictured above) and Eve Eves (too busy ringing up customers to pose for a pic) are not only the nicest, most helpful people, but have incredible taste and a wonderland flair for design. Their shoppe is complete eye candy, filled with vintage trims and ribbons, jars of multi-colored pom poms, shelves upon shelves of dreamy upholstery fabrics (that would make Marie Antoinette swoon - head or no head), wool felts in every color of the rainbow, and an impressive vintage button collection. Yes, I dropped some benjamins in this store, but I defy anyone not to. They have a little bit of everything from German glass glitter to vintage rhinestone hat pins to sweet handmade journals, photo albums and tea cups all made by a local artist. Their shoppe is a must see and was one of the highlights of my trip. Enjoy the pics and be sure to drop in and say hello the next time you're in their neck of the woods. These women get it!

EDGE to edge
Vintage Fabric & Unexpected Inspiration
234 Taylor Street
Port Townsend, WA 98368
open daily

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Calling Cards and Leaving on a Jet Plane

A few months ago, I ordered a set of custom business cards from the amazingly talented Delila Jemaiel of Sepia Art Studio. I was so delighted with them and love the sweet and dreamy quality she gave each one. Delila has made well over 100 custom business cards for others and has a keen appreciation for the smallest of details - a trait that just makes my heart sing. I love shopping at both her etsy store and her online shoppe. What a talent!

I am being a bad girl today and blowing off the gym in lieu of last minute packing for ArtFiberFest. Why is it so hard to pack for these events? I know it's crazy but I feel this strong compulsion to bring everything in my art room, knowing that I'll never use it all and that it's slightly insane to haul it all across the country anyway. Ninety-nine percent of the time I don't finish my projects at the retreat (I'm a slow worker.) so I can find that perfect button or piece of trim when I get back home. I guess it's like going to the first day of school: I want to be prepared and have all my colors sharpened and all my erasers in a row. As a newbie, I'm still trying to figure this all out. But, I have been observing how others (the seasoned retreaters) seem to bring less of everything but just what they need. I think it helps to know what you might like to make, at least in terms of color schemes or themes so you can hone in on what you bring. That being said, I'm sure I won't have a couple of the necessary items on my list, but as long as I remember to bring my toothbrush and underwear, I'll survive.

Thank you all so much for all the baby love you've sent my way! I had a big smile on my face when I was reading your sweet comments.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Blissed Out Happiness

My nose is pointed skyward, eyes tightly closed, and my feet are in a blurry, rapid fire Snoopy dance. Like Nicole, Cristina, Halle, and J-Lo, I, too, am pregnant. It seems like a dream. I don't have words to describe it. We are in a perpetual state of joy, elation, and thankfulness. This has been such a journey. A very hard year...until now. We're pregnant. We are so grateful. We're on our way to starting our family. Just a couple of days ago, we found out we're having a little girl. My heart is already about to burst with love for this babe. How will my heart continue to beat when she arrives? I am changing in big ways. My life is about to change in big ways. I'm having a baby! Thank you, God. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Running Like Mad

Do you ever feel like you've bitten off more than you can chew? That's my state of being right now. After back-to-back visits to see family (and, no dang it, I didn't get to stop at any junk/antique stores) it kind of dawned on me that I have two upcoming art retreats and need to get ready for both. I signed up for two Silver Bella swaps and have yet to finish one of them, although I am hoping to get my Christmas tags finished this weekend. I like to take my time and mentally design the finished product before I begin. Of course, I always change it up as I go along, but I like to have an idea of where I'm headed at the onset. And then of course there's the dreaded supply list and the running across town picking up this item and that. Seems to take forever. Art retreats are a luxury and investment for me so I want to organize myself and have the needed supplies. And I may be the last person in blogland to order her Moo cards, but now that's done. Whew! There's so much work preparing for art retreats, but it's all worth it when we arrive, isn't it? In less than a week, I leave for ArtFiberFest and am delighted to be taking two classes from the fabulous Pam Garrison, the girl who got me over my fear of the sewing machine. I am looking forward to some art time and some me time, as well as meeting like-minded friends. In the meantime, I wanted to show you a recent acquisition by an amazing artist, Kitty Babendreier. I have admired her work for a long time and finally purchased one of her pieces. I love her style and her work. She makes 3-D shadow boxes filled with all the fun junk and ephemera I love to collect. Each piece seems to tell a little story and they have an old, grandma's house kind of feel to them. This one, with loose mica snow at the bottom, is entitled "A Girl and Her Goat." Okay...back to my Christmas tag production. Fa la la!