A little sneak peek at part of a project I've been working on for a client the last couple weeks:
As a kid I repeated this every morning at school; as Americans we hear it a lot and know it by heart. So it's understandable that it just slides into our subconscious where we know the words but maybe don't think very hard about them.
That's something about hand-lettering something over and over again for a project like this: I am sort of forced to think about the words I'm actually forming with those letters. And the word that's been at the top of the pile in my head this past couple weeks is "indivisible". Today's a fun holiday. I don't want to get all preachy or political, those are both things I sort of hate anyway. I don't think I need to say any more than just that one word, anyway:
That's sort of the point of this whole thing, isn't it? The Union that our founders dreamed of, and along with so many others over the last couple centuries, worked hard and fought for. We're all so vastly different in so many ways, yet we're here together.
Here's wishing you all a perfect day of sunshine, yummy food, fun parades, exciting fireworks, coming together with loved ones and total strangers all celebrating the same thing: Liberty and Justice for All. Have an awesome day today everyone!
Hey everyone, have you been visiting the Henry Glass Blog all this week for the Naughty or Nice Holiday Party? They're giving away bundles of fabric every day - this is the last day!
Today I'm one of the featured designers along with Dana Brooks, Anni Downs, Jacquelynne Steves, and the Lizzie B girls. I share my super-simple recipe for one of my old favorites: Hot Buttered Whatevers
and to top the whole thing off today's fabric bundle giveaway is from my American Beauty collection!
Go visit the blog now and enter to win! And while you're at it, entertain yourself by reading everyone's fun answers to the "naughty or nice" questions with great photos and recipes! Enjoy!
Because I am (thankful for you). All you nice folks who visit my blog and Facebook Page, especially those of you who have been following and supporting me since the very beginning.
Many of you remember the Artstuff Holiday Open House I hosted for 17 years on Thanksgiving weekend. This year, I thought, "why not do one online?". Of course, you would have to imagine the hot mulled cider, cookies, wine & cheese, Charlie Brown Christmas and Duke Ellington Nutcracker Suite - but I thought for the extra effort that would take, I'd offer a discount on everything sold and send everyone who shops during the event a special little print of a new design I drew just for the occasion. I had a ton of new (and old!) things ready to list in the shop this week; I was pretty excited about this plan.
Yeah, it was a Grand Plan. But sometimes when you have a grand plan, the Universe has a slightly different one. Monday morning I came into the studio to find the computer down. After a couple drives across the lake and some replaced hardware we thought it would all be ok, but it's not. All the pictures and files to add stuff to the shop, locked inside the sleeping giant. Holiday weekend = repair or replacement won't be until next week.
So. Here I am, hoping this new blogging-from-my-device app works, and here we are. It's not Grand-Plan plan, but it's happening anyway:
All weekend, from Friday through Sunday, it's a Pretend Open House in my Etsy shop especially for you awesome blog and Facebook followers: when you enter the code THANKFUL4YOU at checkout, you'll receive 10% off your whole purchase (excluding shipping, and tax for WA residents). Plus, I'll send you a cute little 5x7" print of this drawing.
We can enjoy the imaginary smell of the hot cider while we nibble on imaginary snacks and listen to imaginary holiday-ish music. There might not be everything I had wanted in the shop there for you, but there's still a lot of neato stuff, and I hope there's just the right goodie for you or those on your gift list.
The catch? I can't guarantee shipping until Monday December 9.
I hope you all have a lovely Thanksgiving day and weekend! I am thankful for you.
Well, here's something I haven't done in a long time. Or technically, ever.
It's been a super long time since I did a holiday retail sale, like the annual Open House I threw for 17 years. Even longer since I sold stuff at a crafts fair of any kind. And although many members of my family are crazy-talented (I said crazy-talented, not just crazy - get it right) we've never gotten together and showcased our handmade goodies together.
So, it's about time, don't you think?
We thought so.
After our vacation a couple months ago, when I made stuff pretty much every waking moment for 2 weeks, it hit me: dude, I love making stuff (duh). I realized I need to make more stuff, because it's good for my soul. Not just drawings and designs, but stuff. Tactile, physical, made things.
And who knows, I could actually start to make a dent in all that weird junk I've been hoarding in my basement over the years insisting "I'm going to make something awesome with this someday!" You know, when I have time.
So in the last few months, a lot of that weird junk has been migrating up from the dark corners of the basement to the slightly less dark corners of my desk, and I've been making time to make stuff with my hands, just for fun: jewelry, little painted objects, clay stuff . . . remember Sweatercats? Yeah, that was fun. They're back.
These guys are waiting for whiskers. And a face. And a few other parts.
And this time the Sweatercats brought friends.
I've been stitching weird and cute little buddies from ugly old clothes and can't stop.
My sisters and nieces make some pretty amazing stuff too, just wait until you see it all. Seriously amazing. I think this is going to be a blast.
So if you're in the area, we hope you stop by and say hi, and see what we've been up to. It'll be an awesome way to kick off the holiday season: you can buy goodies for gifts, or just get inspired to make some stuff yourself - because making stuff is good for your soul.
And if you're nowhere near Washington State and are feeling left out, don't. What doesn't sell this weekend (and what doesn't get finished in time for the bazaar!) is going into my Etsy shop in the next few weeks. And looking at my basement, I can assure you: I'm not going to run out of weird old junk to make stuff with for a long, long time...
I realize that in the midst of this heat wave that's crept across most of the US this week, thick cozy-soft flannel is the furthest thing from your mind, but I still think this post may cool you off just a little bit.
My yardage arrived this past week and I got my first look (and feel!) of my newest fabric group with Henry Glass: Snow Babies!
The design process often leads us down a completely different path than we thought we were going to take, and this is a great example of that.
Believe it or not, the original concept was to create a follow-up to At The Lake.
Then it went off in one totally different direction from that, then another, and after all was said and done - I really, really love how it all came out.
What I love most about this group is the versatility. You could use these coordinates for a project with a fresh and sophisticated feel. The combination of textures, the pops of soft kelly green and warm tan against the icy cool blues - I love this.
I can't wait to dive into this myself, I'm seeing some really beautiful cozy bedding here...
Can't you just see the fresh, bright, crisp winter sunlight shining in through the window onto this?
Or, you could just full-on embrace the sweet, sweet cuteness of the softy-soft critters
like, seriously sweet cuteness, I'm not kidding
oh come on
you know you want to kiss the bunny.
It's alright, go ahead.
And then of course, there are the snowguys
that show up in a fun and busy stripe and a 24-inch panel...
some of whom you might sort of recognize from holiday greeting cards, nesting boxes, gift bags, and more.
Stay tuned here and on Facebook later this month for a fat-quarter bundle giveaway.
In the meantime, hope you are staying cool in this heat. I hope looking at these wintry images has helped a little - I think I feel a tiny bit cooler now.
Pink follows grey so nicely. After months and months of seeing only every shade of grey possible, my neighborhood bursts out in a million shades of pink.
Daily dog-walks this time of year are usually excercises in counting pink trees. How many are on this street or that one, how many blocks are lined entirely with them, which ones bloom sooner or last longer after a heavy rain or spring snow.
I think I trip on cracks in the sidewalk more often than other times of year because I am staring up into the pink. It's a perfect antidote to a long, dull winter.
Happy weekend, happy spring, happy pink, and Happy Easter, everyone!
This design is brand new, but it's already been licensed for products coming out in Spring 2014. I'll keep you posted when I can share more!
...organizing my box of cards and tags before putting them all away, I came across this one:
Possibly my very first handmade holiday card, circa 1970. Credit for the scissor-work on the candles should probably go to Mrs. Pascal from Jackson Park Elementary School. Anyway, the sentiment still holds, so this is for all of you!
Hope you are enjoying the season with the ones you love.
I used to buy pre-made wreaths and "doctor them up" with my own goodies (that's what my Granny used to call it when you add stuff to a hamburger or other sandwich).
At the end of the season I'd always strip the compostable stuff off the base, and save the ring and even the wires for making my own wreaths in the future. I'd seen enough tutorials on craft and gardening shows and magazines to know that making my own was quite doable, but it always seemed like I was too busy with other things by the time I wanted one up, and store-bought wreaths weren't that expensive...
Then it seems like store-bought wreaths suddenly got super-expensive. And a lot uglier. So a few years ago I finally started making my own - and now I feel dumb that it took me so long to get around to it.
What I thought would be a time-consuming project that might look weird turned out to be an almost foolproof thing I can throw together in minutes. It's handy that I still have so many old wire or plastic wreath-forms saved from years of storebought ones, but pretty much anything you find that's a circle (a hub-cap ring, machine part, picture frame, really if it's a lightweight-ish ringy-thing that can be covered up with greenery, you're golden.
If I've got a floppy or hangy area: wrap another chunk of wire around it. Skinny/naked area: wire another glob of greenery to it. Just like that. After it's been up a while, something starts to sag? Tuck it in, wrap more wire - really, you get the picture here. It's not rocket science.
It also feels more meaningful when I hang something on the front door that came from my own back yard. I find lots of unexpected things in the garden to add: stuff I usually overlook (weeds, pods, vines, twiggy and mossy branches that litter the ground after a storm) and when my yard's garbage makes something look pretty, I don't feel so bad for having not cleaned it up in the first place.
The last few years they've been perky little fir wreaths with lots of pine cones and other goodies
but this year I went super simple, monochromatic and sort of loose:
it's just cedar, fir, ivy and rosemary (it smells amazing when the door swings open!).
Really, you should make a wreath (or 2, or 3...). It's totally satisfying!
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Please don't use or reproduce anything you find here without permission.