Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Looking Back

When I was nine years old I wanted to be a fashion designer. I would hide away in my room for hours designing ball-gownesque garments. I was also obsessed with the Anne of Green Gables series at this time so most of my designs resembled a mix of the eighties married with the Victorian era. Let's just say my tastes have changed quite a bit.

What strikes me most about looking back at that nine year old version of myself was my unabashed creativity and knowing of myself. I knew my tastes. I knew what I loved. I knew who and what I wanted to be. Over the years things changed. The books collected dust while I spent hours on the phone with the friend or boyfriend of the month. I cared more about what other people thought than what my true self wanted. Eventually I lost that little girl completely.

The best thing about loosing yourself is the opportunity to find yourself again. This period of reinvention is exciting. Funny thing is my true self isn't that different that the nine year old girl. I love to read. I love that quiet time all to myself. I love creating. I just started a line of embroidered hand bags in my shop. I wanted to expand my items to reach more of a market than just home decor. It has been really exciting and I love the feel of the pencil in my hand once more creating something beautiful with passion. Who knew looking back could give you so much to look forward too.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Ikea How I Love Thee

When I was a kid, probably around nine years old, I visited Ikea for the first time. I should have realized then my love of interior design and the power it can have over your emotions. I was with my best friend and her mother and somewhere along the way we could not contain our excitement and were scolded by one of the sales people for climbing on the beds.

Thing is, I am now 32 years old and I have the exact same reaction every time I go there. I want to sit in all the chairs, roll on the beds, and touch every piece of fabric. It is usually a blur of adrenaline and overabundance right down to those lovely Swedish meatballs. My husband commented this trip that I am marketing executive's dream come true with all those strategically placed extras: "Oh I need that!..and that!...and that too!"

This trip I did manage to restrain myself a bit and actually stuck to my list, a first for me! I picked up a new mirror for our living room, new curtains for the office and living room, some dish towels, some fabric remnants, and a new houseplant that really belongs to our three year old son. (He is obsessed with them.) Once I get the curtains ironed and hung I can finally take some photos of our "White Out" office/craft room. Then I will promptly start working on my list for the next Ikea trip! Check out some of my purchases: Ekne


Friday, March 25, 2011

Illustraion Friday "Toy"

"Taking a child to the toy store is the nearest thing to a death wish parents can have. " ~Fred G. Gosman

Wednesday, March 23, 2011


Thanks to some inspiration by Ellen at Handmade Recess, I have been thinking about the concept of waiting. What if we didn't have to wait? What if everything was instant gratification? What if we didn't have to work our tush off to get what we want?
Some things would be fine to get right iced latte, a hug from a loved one. But what about the big ticket items, there is usually much learned in the waiting process and in the working process. For instance, in the six months since I opened my Etsy shop I've learned things that have put me in a better position for the future of my business. Some are creative and conceptual, but others are nitty gritty business: what's the best packaging materials, what's the best way to file processed orders, what items should I keep filed for tax purposes. These items aren't glamorous but are as necessary to being successful as anything else.

What if huge sales would've hit from the get-go? Maybe I could have learned as I went but something most likely would have suffered like my customer service or my family life.

I like to find parallels in nature in any situation. It has almost become a hobby. When you plant a seed you don't reap fruit overnight. It takes time, some effort, some weeding out of things unnecessary, and some waiting. This is not wasted time, this is time to think and plan your next steps. No matter how much you toil in the soil, the plant will not grow any faster than intended. This is nature's time for us to get ready for a harvest.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Simple Things

Last week was was long and a bit tiring. The kids and myself were sick with colds so everyone was a little low on patience. To top it off there were some embarrassing situations at of all places Church. My husband being a very good man and knowing my love of pretty things brought me home some flowers on Friday. I love to divide a bouquet up and spread them around the house. These are two of the bouquets (I had five total).
(Living Room)
(Downstairs Bathroom)

Flowers always remind me that the most beautiful things, are often the most simple. Appreciating what you have, like a beautiful family and a house full of flowers, will always turn a bad week around.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Illustration Friday "Cultivate"

"I want to cultivate the seed that was placed in me until the last small twig has grown." Kathe Kollwitz.

What seems like a lifetime ago, I worked in the human resource field. Then a sequence of events, one of which included the birth of my son, made it seem impossible to continue on that path. We had a mortgage, bills, and the responsibilities of a child so I did go back for a while but all the time dreaming, wishing, wanting a different lifestyle. I also had the creative burn that could not be extinguished by my daily duties. So I started planning, cultivating if you will, a different path. A different life. One in which I could be with my children all day, and also continue to explore my creative pursuits to see where they would lead me.

Things started to happen. I am now home full time with my TWO beautiful children. I have opened two Etsy shops. In my most full and busy of days I find time to be inspired, to plan, and to work with my hands for a while. Throughout these bustling days I feel my dreams unfolding and growing into reality partially due to hard work and care, and partially with help from forces unknown working little miracles everyday.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Illustration Friday "Stir"

"Make no little plans: they have no magic to stir men's blood." Daniel Burnham

This quote seems very appropriate for this time in my life. It seems as if all the things I'm dreaming of are big plans and big changes. They all seem a bit magical, illusive perhaps. This sketch is one I did for a drawing class almost six years ago. It reminds me that these dreams I have today were the same I had back then and I am a lot closer to them than I have ever been before. Some I am already living.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

What's Coming

As I finish up the peacock pillow my mind is on what's next! I ave three ideas brewing: the dandelion pillow, a hot air balloon pillow, or a steam locomotive pillow inspired by my son who is a train fanatic! I would love your feedback.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Tail Feathers

I am finishing up my most complex embroidery project yet. This has been several weeks in the making from my initial sketch and there are times that I feel it will never be done. But the closer I get to completion the happier I am with the way it is turning out. It is really beautiful. It is one of those pillows I would be happy to keep for myself, but then couldn't justify the time. The entire front cover will be peacock feather design. Here is a sneak peak!
This coincides with a milestone for me of almost 100 twitter followers! I know that is small potatoes for some, but just starting out it feels huge. So my son and I are letting off some steam and celebrating by dancing around in my studio...sometimes you just need to shake your tail feathers!

Friday, March 4, 2011

White Out

I have been really been inspired by the white rooms I've been seeing lately. So I took the plunge and started painting my office/craft/painting room white. This is not an easy task. This particular room is an extension off the side of the house. Three walls of the four are almost all windows surrounded by wood paneling.

The other wall is brick that includes the back of the fireplace from my living room. This leaves the room with lots of different textures as well as colors. We painted the brick wall white a few years back and now it is time to tackle the other walls. With the great light I get from the windows I think the space will be an amazing fresh bright space. When the painting is done I plan to get some white sheers to soften the windows and replace the ugly green ones that came with the house. It is still a work in progress and since my one year old has come down with a fever it will take a few days longer than expected. Stay tuned for the finished look!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011


I've been thinking of stages a bit lately. Not as in theatre, but as in stages of life. Perhaps it is watching my children grow and learn and change or myself grow a bit older everyday. I'm thinking about how to capture that in my art. For my drawing I am sketching a dandelion as it changes from a bud, to blossom, to finally a bearer of the wishes as it floats into the wind. I am also going to embroider this for my etsy shop and will eventually post some pics. I think the resonating point is to enjoy each stage to fullest, you can't change fate, but you can change how you feel.