Monday, September 24, 2012

I'm Teaching Treasure Nests in the San Juan Islands

So fun!!  One of my favorite classes AND a road trip!  I feel like I won the lottery!

I love making these little fabric nests.  I use them throughout our house for collecting little tidbits and keeping them organized.

Plus, hello?  They're just pretty, right?

So, the class?  I'm teaching through Wild at Heart Studios in Friday Harbor.  I've never been, so I'm super-excited!  It looks like an adorable little town.  Must schedule an extra day, just to poke around town while I'm there.

I'll be teaching Treasure Nests March 9-10, 2013, and the workshop is held at Earthbox Inn & Spa.  It looks FAB!  It's a two-day workshop, which gives us lots of time to create and embellish a nest or two.  Hey, I'll even feed you lunch!  :)


Class description:  I call it nesting; that urge to surround myself with all of my little treasures and all the things I love.

These sweet little nests are made from scraps of your favorite fabrics, bits of yarn, and then embellished with your wonderful tiny treasures. After that, use them to store your crafty doo-dads, hold your jewelry, or sit on your coffee table with a stack of love notes and colorful postcards. Treasure Nests are the perfect little happy place to showcase your bits and baubles and to stash your goodies.

This is the treasure nest on the little table next to my sewing chair. 

Each student will leave class with one completed Treasure Nest, brightly colored and embellished with lots of your fun little treasures.  Since we've got two whole days together, it's possible to get more than one nest completed!

It would be so fun to have you along!  To register, or for more information, click here.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

New Mini's

I spent the entire weekend in my studio this past weekend, and loveloveloved it!  Finished up some new mini's, little 5x7 and 6x6-inch canvas boards.

When I started out, they were going to be journal covers.  But they sort of morphed into more detailed designs, and I think they can stand alone as little bits of framed art.  I'm going to head to the thrift shops this weekend for funky little frames that I can paint and put them into.  

I'll be showing my work in November at the Wholesome Blends, a coffee house here in Portland.  I'm super-excited, and busybusybusy creating fun new work for Scott and his gang.  More on that in later posts, but it's fun to be working towards a deadline.  I work so much better that way. 

I've got a few larger pieces started, but I'm feeling the urge to go even bigger - like 36x36 inches.  I've never painted that big before, but the smaller canvas seems a titch confining right now.  My arm wants to paint big, bold brushstrokes.  It's going to be fun to play around with that.

 As I'm painting, all of these other ideas are springing up:  how to adapt these designs to stitchery samplers, creating prints and having the prints become journal covers, creating teenytiny prints and turning those into pendants.  Lots of creative mojo going on!!

Monday, September 17, 2012

Paint in my Hair

I've been playing around with paint, painting up my doodles.  The same doodles that I was stitching all last winter, but they look very different in paint.  It's such a fun transition.  I love seeing the change in the design from medium to medium.

Plus, I just love the mess!

This piece is a little more muted in colors than my typical painting, but I sort of dig it, for a change.  I stitch mostly on white linen, as you know, so I thought I'd try a more neutral paint background.  (Just so you know, I did paint a layer of hot pink first!  Haha.  Then I covered it with a bit of eggshell, so there are little pops of pink peeking out in spots.  I can't help myself.)

This is a mini-canvas, just 4"x4".  I wanted to play with an encaustic finish, laying melted beeswax over the completed painting.  I have been dying to see how this will work.  Guess what?  I adore it!  It feels so good, and the beeswax is so fun to work with.  (Tip: heat gun = my new best friend.  Makes beeswax very forgiving.)

 I got daring, and tried the same process on a larger piece.  This one is a 9"x12" canvas board.  I just love how the beeswax takes to the bright paint colors and dials them down a notch in a warm, fuzzy, muted way.  (Think vaseline over a camera lense.)  The finished piece, with beeswax is above...

...and this is the painting in progress. It's really hard to tell the difference in the photos, but let me just say, when the beeswax cooled, I squealed something like this: "oh my NERVES! I LOVE THIS!".  Fun.

Still time to follow my blog and enter the drawing...

Friday, September 7, 2012

How Following My Blog Could Change Your Life, and Morning Pages

Following my blog?!  Hey, thanks!  You may already be a winner!  What's that?, you say.  Well, leave a comment here if you're my blog follower and you could win a $100 gift certificate to spend in my Etsy shop!  Yup.  Just for reading my random thoughts and looking at my pretty pictures.  And $100 to spend any which way you like in my Etsy shop, while perhaps not life-changing, could be a whole lot of fun, n'est-ce pas?

What?!  You're not following my blog?  That's okay, you could be a winner, too.  Just click that "Join This Site" button over there on the right sidebar, and magically, you are following my blog.  Then,  leave a comment here to be entered into my $100 Etsy shop gift certificate drawing.  What a great way to end the week, eh?

Today's pretty pictures?  They're from my morning pages journal.  I worked through The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron about a hundred years ago, and ABSOLUTELY LOVED IT!!  I actually took a 10-week class through PCC with my sis and our friend Linda.  It was an amazing 10 weeks, and made more so working through that book with Krissy and Linda.

 Many of you may also have read the book, and if you have, you already know about the magic of morning pages.  For those of you who haven't read The Artist's Way, stop what you're doing right now and go get the book - check it out from your library, get online and buy it, borrow it from a friend.  But read it.  You won't be sorry. 

I absolutely love my quiet time in the morning for "purging on the page", listing random thoughts, making lists, whatever comes to mind.  And it's so much lovelier when I have a pretty book to write in, and my favorite smooth-writing pen.  Once I get going, the thoughts just seem to flow, and my hand can barely keep up.  Not all mornings are like that, but honestly?  Many of them are.  And it makes for such a wonderful start to the day, to have all that mojo going.  Do you do morning pages?  When you leave you're "I'm a follower" comment, I'd love to hear how you spend your quiet writing time.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

A Little Art Journal Goodness

My paint mojo is niggling at me.  I've been doodlingdoodlingdoodling with markers in my art journal, and  my fingers are itching to throw paint at a canvas.

And, speaking of art journals, I always have several going at once, and use them for different things.  When I first embarked on my art journal habit, I had just one and mostly I used it to doodle up different designs and drawings with markers.  Just play.  No pressure.  As pages started to come to life, they would sort of talk to me: "Hey, I'd be really cute all appliqued and stitched onto felted wool".  Or they might scream, "Paint me, paint me, please paint me".

Well, since I do like to create in lots of different ways, it began to make sense to me to have a stitch journal and a paint journal along with my original doodle journal.  That gave me books with pages of inspiration when the stitch bug bites or the painting mojo kicks into high gear.

I'd be perfectly happy to spend each and every day in my sunny studio, just doodling in my art journal, then waiting for the muse to whisper "My dear, that simply must be painted", or perhaps a little more forcefully, "What are you waiting for? Stitch that up, immediately!".  And then go about doing just that.

Duty calls, however, and there is a job to get to, groceries to be bought, a dog to be walked.  So, I sneak doodletime in whenever I can, so that when I have a bigger chunk of uninterrupted (haha) time, I can get straight to the studio and paints. 

 I also have "journals-to-go" - the ones that I throw into my bag so that when I find myself alone in a coffee house with a big latte and a muffin, I have something fabulous to read.  They also have blank pages so that I can write down every little detail about what's going on in said coffee house.  Makes for lovely story fodder later.  So, that's what's going on here.  What's happening at your place?