Monday, May 31, 2010

goals and dreams

kelly rae roberts' taking flight ecourse began yesterday and i am quickly realizing that i need to outline goals for my creative business in order to move forward and get the most from the class. so here they are…

small goals:
  • be published in a national magazine by the end of the year
  • create a calendar with my botanical drawings and find a publisher for it. month to month in flowers, but with a modern, youthful twist
  • purchase linwood avenue embroidered labels for my products regardless of cost
  • become a much better product photographer
  • keep my etsy shop update regularly
  • save money to attend an art retreat

big goals:
  • enter the world of licensing. would love to design and reproduce vintage inspired lamps
  • expand linwood avenue so it overshadows my graphic design business

blog goals:
  • have my blog become a place of creative inspiration for readers
  • build my blog followers
  • have a larger tutorial section

all of these goals have been cataloged in my brain for quite some time and i have been taking steps to achieve many of them. however, for these goals to happen, one thing i must realize and truly believe is that my path of creativity is no less artistic than a traditional painter or sculpture. this is something i have struggled with for many years and i guess my creative doubt has held me back at times. "crafting" has more or less always been a four letter word to me. why? i really have no idea, it is just a "truth" i have made up and have chosen to believe. today, i am going to make a conscious effort to change this negative thinking!

as i put my goals out into the universe, i ask for your help. if you find something inspiring here at my online linwood avenue home, "follow" me, blog about my content, tell your friends about me and in return, i will try my best to post more tutorials and come up with fresh creative inspiration on a day to day basis.

now, what are your creative goals???

Saturday, May 29, 2010

restaurants and storage

recently, jenni horne showed jessica and i an out of this world junk/salvage store. it was a little under in hour away, so by the time we pulled up the long gravel path, the anticipation was killing me. folks, i have never seen a store with so much junk that was so very organized. seriously, you want lamps, go into the lap room. bed frames, the bed frame room. mirrors that used to be attached to dressers - there is even a room for those. and this is just the main building. outside on the property are a bunch of old train cars that are filled with goodies as well. i bought some old circuit city 5x5 foot foam core signage for one munchkins room. he thinks i am CRAZY, but the boards are covered with very graphic text and a photo of a hot young guy with crazy gelled hair listening to music on his headphones - they are awesome.

in the "restaurant" salvage train car, we spotted this long metal trough (for lack of a better word). not sure how i was the one who ended up taking it home, but i did! it is a little over 5.5 ft long and fits my milk glass vases perfectly. each vase holds specific art items. lifting all this clutter of my desk has freed up so much room, i am loving it.

other items i bought: a metal ball rack for a garage which i think will hold towels in the munchkins bathroom, retro cardboard popcorn tubs, 3 lamps, a large glass serving plate which i am going to turn into a cake stand, and a scale to weight my etsy shipments. all in all, a very successful trip!

on another note, i will be doing a bit of website rerouting this weekend, so i apologize for any blog issues over the next few days. have a great holiday weekend and i will see you next week!

Friday, May 28, 2010

a new look and attitude

positive thoughts for today:

- hydrangeas are back in bloom!

- i am loving the refresh of my blog/website!

- it's the munchkins last day of school which means many weeks ahead of sleeping in!

- kelly rae roberts ecourse!

- couples poker tonight!

- the pool opening on saturday!

- pioneer woman photoshop actions. they are wonderful!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

ecourse and inspiration

i took the plunge and signed up for kelly rae roberts' ecourse today. the course outlines all aspects of running a creative business and i am looking forward to a ton of inspiration! since i am sure there will be a lot of items added to my to do list, i am going to work double time this weekend to check off what i already have to do. first up on the list is to update this blog. stay tuned for some changes, hopefully good!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

love and a quilt

for a few weeks now i have been working on a quilt for my brother. i am at the finish line, so in typical fashion, i am already dreaming up my next one. i am not a quilter by any means, i just pretend to be one. my quilts usually end up with some wonky shapes and seam puckering, but it's all done with love, right?

when i was in london last fall, i bought this screen printed "LOVE" towel from a craft fair. it has been hanging around my studio for months because i have been afraid to use it for fear of ruining it. then i had a moment of inspiration...

i would pair it with these beautiful anna maria horner fabrics and make a quilt.

i get a bit obsessive mapping things out, so i whipped this up in illustrator. each color block represents a specific fabric and i am so excited to see how it all comes together. and, since i am always up for a challenge, i will be attempting to hand quilt this one. no machines allowed!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

a cottage garden and a vision

we have this little grass nook beside our garage that is pretty much a useless space. finally, we bit the bullet and bought some beautiful cobblestones to lay down a cottage path. after some strenuous work, i managed to fit all the rocks into place and am so excited about the results - and it is only half done! next comes the hard part - planting the ground cover in the cracks. i am hoping for a fragrant, hearty plant that is above all, quick growing. any suggestions???

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

christmas and summer

yes, i realize that we are only on the cusp of summer, but my mind is swimming with holiday ideas. i am going a more traditional route with colors this time around. hopefully my fabric choices will work together nicely. the background fabric of the stockings is a bit too traditional for my tastes, but the price and weight of the fabric is ooh, so nice. then i am going to do holiday themed appliques with the colorful support fabric. i am hoping to make some pillowcase covers along these lines as well.

sometimes it is so hard to have all these ideas swimming around my head with so little time to accomplish them! i guess that's what summer break is for ;)

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

a peony: photographed and drawn

i wish i had a green thumb, i really wish i did. usually i have a really hard time spending money on plants because they almost always end up dead. last year, i jumped back in again and planted a peony in the back yard. and guess what??? it grew this year and has produced the most amazing plumy pink flowers!!!

i haven't drawn anything since my botanical class a few months ago and i must say that this was a tough one. there are so many petals, but i am fairly happy with the outcome, especially the leaves.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

branding and booths

when i am prepping for a festival, i often get way into branding and displays. turning your 10x10 booth into a true store front can make all the difference in your sales. the goal for my "store" is to turn it into a room of a house. if i had a truck, you can bet that i would be carting around a brightly painted hutch with drawers on the bottom. my lamps would be placed on the top shelves and spilling out of the drawers, would be my aprons and pillowcase covers. i am also on the hunt for a 10x10 sisal rug to ground the space. since i don't have a truck, i settled on this child's bookcase headboard. i found it at a thrift store for $10 and painted it a bright blue taken from my logo.

the front panel was a perfect spot for some Linwood Avenue branding. the panel measures 40"x6", so i designed a logo strip on my computer and then printed it out on 8.5x11 sheets of paper.

to do this, you can set your printer to "tile" your pages. once they are printed, trim off the left and right sides so your images will butt up against each other.

i then took super 77 spray glue and adhered the pages to the front of the shelf.

and voila! a custom branded piece of advertising for very little money.

but, make sure you add adequate supports if you intend to position this on a table. if you don't, you might cry like a baby when the wind knocks it off straight down to the asphalt during setup and cracks the entire piece. so sad, so very sad :(

Monday, May 10, 2010

festivals and fun

i agreed last minute to join the dnwoody art festival and it was the best decision ever. yes, i had 4 frantic days of making items and very little sleep, but it payed of, both in sales and experience.

some festivals i have participated in have fallen short, very short. while i never doubt my product, i do doubt if said festivals are attracting the right clientele for me. i have said for a while now that i need to find my audience, and let me tell you, my audience was in dunwoody, ga! i received many oohs and ahhs and purchases, which did so much to boost my spirit and make the weekend a very fun 2 days.

i have to also give a shout out to the women who run splash festivals. they are the force behind this show, and the one i am doing in norcross, ga in october. the show ran so smoothly with their numerous volunteers, intense advertising and designated vendor areas to relax and rehydrate. all of it was much appreciated!!!

now, it is back to the studio to work on some new ideas :)

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

sewing and painting

this is how beautiful my red roses were before the south was hit with a massive rain storm. now, not so much :)

i am however very happy that the rain hit last weekend and not this coming weekend. i recently got the opportunity to fill in last minute at an amazing festival-the dunwoody art fest. it is shaping up to be a terrific event for mother's day weekend.

since i didn't know i was participating until late monday night, my inventory had seen better days. needless to say that i have been a very busy bee playing catch-up. my office floor looks like i set 3 toddlers loose for a few hours. i have string and fabric scraps everywhere, i am going through spools of thread like they are candy and i am covered in paint. somewhere in the madness, i have to admit that i secretly like things this way!

if you are in the atlanta area, stop by for a visit. all i know is that i am in zone 3, not sure if that is behind the scenes lingo or not, and i won't find out my booth number until i arrive at the crack of dawn saturday morning. i will post it on twitter once i am settled so all you peeps can swing by to see what new items i have.

have a happy mother's day weekend!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

pillows and piping

slowly, but surely, i am making progress on the family room redo. gone are the large orange floor pillows and in their place are happy yellow and green floor pillows. they brighten the room so much that i am glad i took the leap. i spend so much time decorating a room the first time that it is often hard to admit that some things can be improved upon, and even harder to actually do it! the green fabric was from a discount fabric shopping trip i took a few weeks back and the yellow is left over from my guest bedroom pillows.

when i make pillows, 2 things are a must - piping and rounded corners. piping gives pillows that extra something. it takes them from being home made to looking store bought. i round my corners for 2 reasons. 1. it is easier for the piping to lay around a corner and 2. if your pillows are squared off, there is always a lot of extra fabric in the corners that never gets filled.

call me a pillow snob, but that's the way my mind works :)


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