Friday, April 29, 2011

hoops and hankies

vintage hankies have always been a weakness of mine - i think i inherited the obsession from my mom! you can generally find hankies at estate sales or thrift stores for a buck a piece and they have the sweetest floral prints on them.

my friend jenni showed up the other day and gifted me eight 4-inch embroider hoops and i knew immediately what i would do with them. hankies are typically very thin fabric, so i layered them on top of some white muslin i had in my fabric bin for extra stability and then stretched them in the hoops. my next step will be to embroider embellishments onto the flowers and maybe add a word or two to each. in my head, i can already see how sweet they are going to be!

what is your thrifting weakness? and do you reuse your finds, or put the in a drawer for safe keeping?

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

storms and warnings

lately we have been plagued with really heavy rain storms in the south. a major one was schedule to hit the other night, so i promptly went out to my favorite rose bush and cut off almost every bloom to place around the house in vases. my rationale was that if i left them on the bush, there would be none left after the heavy winds and rain.

the result? they are thriving inside, so full and vibrant. don't you wish that sometimes in life we had this luxury? the warning of a large crisis ahead where you could take cover inside, wait it out and continue blooming? mind you, i have not had any crisis as of late, but you never know when one will hit.

Monday, April 25, 2011

bunnies and brothers

some new additions to the Linwood Avenue house arrived yesterday in the munchkins easter baskets! aren't they so innocently sweet???

my boys are definitely getting older and would rather be watching icarly than sponge bob, so i know my days of handmade easter treats are winding down. however, i couldn't resist this cute bunny pattern, so i bought it, then adapted it in a few ways to make it more suitable for my boys. i omitted the diaper bottom, and gave them some curious eyes which i think made all the difference. the part i love most is that i used men's shirting fabric to give it that extra masculine look that boys of 8 and 6 desire :)

i couldnt' help but giggle as munchkin #1 snuggled his bunny at bedtime and said he knew the easter bunny would bring him one because he saw it in a store and wished for it.

um, no, but the sentiment was sweet anyways!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

i just wanted to stop by and wish everyone a happy easter! i am currently laying in bed trying not to fall asleep from food overload. we had a wonderful dinner with extended family and some good friends. before dinner, the kids overdosed on egg hunts while i worked on getting the table setting just right. do you do that, stress over the smallest detail? it's not often that i can set a table with pale pink glasses, so i went with it.

i hope everyone is having a day filled with love, relaxation and some creativity sprinkled in there somewhere :)

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

trespassing and a work in progress

to make progress on my flower of the month calendar, i have needed to find an iris to draw. who knew they were such a hard flower to find??? i visited 2 florists and explained that i draw flowers and could i buy an iris stem and they both looked at me like i was crazy and one even added that irises are very temperamental flowers. thanks for the info.

last friday, a friend and i went to a community yard sale in the fanciest subdivision of our little community. people come out by the hundreds to be let behind the gates and sneak a peek at how the other side lives. we stopped at one sale in a culdesac and i couldn't help but notice the un-kept yard next door. this is very unusual because most houses in here have yard crews. upon further inspection, i noticed that a section of the yard was overflowing with the most beautiful irises. i quickly asked the lady running the sale if the house was empty and when i found out it was, i hurried over and snuck away with 3 iris stems safely tucked in my car. score!

the hardest part about drawing flowers is the time constraints. they literally change minute by minute, so you have to draw part by what you see and part by intuition. a teacher of mine said to photograph the flowers, then draw from the photo. i find this really hard to do though because i feel that the photo always looks flat. so i suck it up and sketch as much as i can before the flower wilts. the above photo is after i have done my sketching and before i go in and blend out all the harsh lines.

i can't wait to add this to my calendar pages. february will be checked off shortly!

Monday, April 18, 2011

sleeping and dreaming

here is my latest original piece for my up coming show - a sweet dreamy tulip. i will have a total of 5 framed canvases ranging in size from 8x10 to 20x24. i have a million ideas for these canvases, but am using the show as a coming out party to see how they are received. good thoughts people, good thoughts!

today was supposed to be the day that i checked a lot off my to do list, but instead i woke up wishing i could go back to bed and sleep off a head cold that formed overnight. i have design work to start and a very important leap forward article to write for a magazine, but all i can do is dream about summer and days spent at the pool with my little munchkins.

i always have tomorrow, right?

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

rolled and packed

i have been hibernating lately trying to finish up a huge bunch of aprons. my first festival of the season is may 7 & 8, and the deadline is quickly approaching! i think i sewed 25 in one day and wouldn't you know it, i had 3 to go and completely ran out of thread. not bobbin thread, but spools of thread. i have random colors lying around, but since i only sew with white, i was up a creek. i made a quick dash to the fabric store and haven't left the house since.

thank goodness my annual easter box of Sarris Candy goodies from my mom arrived on my doorstep today, i was starting to get really hungry!

Friday, April 8, 2011

highs and lows

hi all! first off, let me start by saying i am overwhelmed with the cool things that have been happening to me lately and overwhelmed with all your lovely comments/emails. like being on design*sponge yesterday??? seriously, i could not believe it. i may or may not have even planned to meet up with my girl friends for a round of margaritas in celebration (more on that later... :)

besides the fact that it opened up my tiny little online home to the whole wide world, for me, it is more about validation. everyone wants that pat on the back when they do something right, and for us as bloggers, being featured is our online equivalent of that. the before and after editor over there, kate, was so nice and friendly, i had to ask myself why i hadn't submitted projects earlier. and the answer to that question is the same little devil on my shoulders i wrote about earlier in the week saying that my photos aren't quality enough, my projects aren't desirable enough. but really, if i love the pics and if i love the projects, wouldn't other people? this is the second time in a week that i have proven that little devil wrong and actually achieved something i set out to do. so really, mr. devil, you can pack your bags and leave.

the funny thing is that right before i was notified of the feature, i received a very frustrating business email where i felt extremely wronged and it left me stewing for the better part of wednesday morning. you see for every high, there has to be a low and people are lying if they say there doesn't.

so just like that: low, high, low, high, one step forward, one step back. the roller coaster ride of being an artist seeking acceptance. i'm just glad you all stick around through my failures and successes!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

a find and fabric

you know how much i love milkglass and vintage fabric, right? well last weekend i was able to combine the two and couldn't have been happier.

saturday morning, i set out to meet a friend for a day of strolling antique shops. of course, i had to leave 2 hours early so i could hit all the yard/estate sales in the virginia highlands neighborhood in atlanta. i found this unique wooden piece at the last sale i went to and for some reason, i couldn't leave it. my house is pretty much furnished and i really had nowhere to put it, but as i said, i couldn't leave it. when i asked the home owner how much she wanted for it, she was all "oh, i just love this piece", "it is a really old antique", "i hate to part with it", "i was hoping to get $15 for it" - WHAT??? seriously, $15 for a custom wall shelf that is 5 feet long, are you kidding me, i definitely couldn't leave it then!

so down the backseats of my car went and in slid this baby. i should stop here and say that usually when i buy projects like this one, they sit in my garage for a few months while i think really hard on what i want to do with them. not this piece. the next day i immediately got out the saw horses, propped the shelf up and started to paint. the wood was never painted or stained, so getting the white paint on was a breeze. for those interested, i have a love affair with glidden antique white, it is my go to paint color. next came the fun part - i pulled out some sunny fabric and lined the back of the shelves. all it took was a ruler, scissors and a lot of super 77 spray glue (another go to item for me). the yellow polka dot is a new fabric while the blue and yellow floral prints were cut from old sheets.

this piece now hangs above the desk in my office. it fits in between my computer and crazy blue lamp perfectly! the best part is i can now show off my mikglass finds. they are perfect for holding pens, paint brushes, any office odds and ends.

this display even makes scissors look like art, right???

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

little alouette and a little love

have you guys seen little alouette's natural wooden teethers and play sets? they really are the cutest, smoothest, sweetest things for your wee one, ever!

my day job as a freelance graphic designer typically consists of fairly constricting corporate work. however, once in a while a super fun project comes along to make everything worth it. i met amy, the mama over at little alouette, in college more years back than i care to say. through the blog world, we reconnected and since then i have helped her with design work. part of her goal for 2011 was to step up her package design and i jumped at the chance to help. she wanted her toys to be boxed up so they would look pretty on shelves in the boutiques that carry her line. i created the box shape from scratch and it includes a nifty self closure when the top flap is folded down. to help her with affordable printing, i designed one large main label that is placed on every box. then we printed small circular labels with illustrations of her toys that are traded out depending on which toy is in the box.

i also absolutely love the little peek hole on the back of the box which allows the customer to feel the smooth toy inside.

there is nothing better then when my graphic design job and my crafting business get to merge together. makes going to work super enjoyable!!!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Friday, April 1, 2011

custom orders and creativity

i have been getting a lot of custom apron orders lately and this makes me so, so happy because it means that...

a. people like what i am doing
b. people understand the importance of what they wear as being part of their overall festival booth design.

katie, the proprietress of this sweet etsy shop ordered the above apron to wear at festivals. her first festival to be exact. we went back and forth a few times on fabric that best reflects her and i love the overall structured look. i think it represents her style perfectly.

if you had to design an apron for yourself, what fabric would best represent you? i myself am a big floppy floral kind of gal such as this new fabric i am totally gushing over :)


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