Tuesday, March 31, 2009

The Way I See Things

I have secrets... for example... I lied about signing my mom's name on my tests in 4th grade, and swore I didn't do it - until I was hauled off to the Principal's office, then confessed it all like I was in church. I want to bleach my hair white, but I'm too afraid of people's judgmental looks. I would pick a magazine any day over a book, but I read books so people will think I'm really smart and not addicted to People Magazine.

Since my kids have gotten older, and I have more free time, I realized recently that I have developed some fresh new secrets. I like to call it the disappearing theory, mom-on-vacation-at-home, even HIDEOUT. I could blame it on my kids, crafty-pressures, trying to get on with my new "job" even... you pick. However, with my understanding husband, and my girls, I am making my way through my newest 'situation', and trying to get everything sorted out... for my sanity's sake. I'll keep you updated on the progress.

Share a secret today!

Monday, March 30, 2009

Cuteness Continues

Birdbrain... Me?

Glitter, paper, ribbon, oh my!
Give me a birdhouse
And decorate, I'll try.
A bird to perch here,
An owl over there,
Sprinkle with glitter-
My heart's filled with cheer!

Can you tell that I am in love with these friendly birdhouses? I was so taken by the Glitter House class I took at Paper Tales, and these birdhouses are the result. Can one go too far when it comes to loving little birdies? Please, let me know if that's what's happening to me!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Try Again: The Kreativ Blogger Award

Thank You, Tamerie!
... for that nice award. I do try to be creative with my blogging, and sometimes I think I'm successful. It's nice to hear that others think I succeed :o) I am truly happy to be recognized for this, especially with such a pretty award!

Part of the award is listing 7 things that I like/enjoy/love. So, here goes:
  1. I love my family; 1 husband + 2 sons + a grammy (close by) + Tex, and including my pets, Missie Lola, and even a crotchety Birdita. There are others too, just more than I can name here!
  2. I love creative people, all sorts.
  3. I am blessed to be able to work out of my home, on my creative endeavors
  4. I love my girls (you know who you are :o)
  5. I love living in Coronado, and reconnecting with my "roots"
  6. I am happiest on a bright sun-shiny-day, working my creative fingers to the bone
  7. My garden makes my heart sing
The second part is to bequeath the Kreativ Blogger Award to 7 blogs I think are creative. My, it will be tough to stop at 7!
  1. The most fabulous blog: Little Brown Pen
  2. I love all the creativity in Marcia's studio
  3. I don't know her, but I think I love her... blog! Stitch Poet
  4. A place for some great street fashion: The Sartorialist
  5. Always inspired by a bag maker/rocker: U Handbag
  6. I am smitten by Bairbre Aine's creativity.
  7. Not a blog, but my favorite shop :o) The Grove  Visit the Grove this Saturday night for the Walkabout. You won't be disappointed!
Thanks again, Tamerie. I couldn't have done it without you and all your inspiration. See you tomorrow at Miguels!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Oh my, An Award!

(Ok, this is why I need your help Tamerie!) I DID take the Handmade Pledge, and have wanted to post this as a sidebar on my blog. Somehow I just couldn't figure that one out. So, now, here it is here... just not exactly where I want it to be... Back to the drawing board on the award...

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Coronado Eagle & Journal Features Val's Art Studio

Thank you, Elizabeth!
For that wonderfully informative article in this week's Eagle & Journal. I tried to post a link to the article here, but apparently, they update the website the week following the current paper. Well, next week you might be able to go online and view the article then. 

So many people are very curious about needle felting, and how it's done. Though I most often do flat or 2-D needle felting onto a surface like a sweater or purse pocket, there is a very different art to 3-D needle felting. Tricky; you are not only designing a dimensional shape while trying to get the proportions correct, but you are trying to make something presentable as well. I have been asked to teach a class on needle felting at Paper Tales, and the Grove, and will let you know as soon as the dates are finalized. If you are loving this art form, please plan to bring a lot of patience with you to the class. The little Harriet QT took me 3 hours to needle felt (not including the dress!), and she's very tiny, standing only about 3" tall. Also, these needle felts are somewhat fragile, so they are not meant for children's toys. They prefer sitting pretty on a shelf, and being adored with loving eyes.

Of course, there are many other options
beyond flat felting and needle felting QT-pies like Harriet. There are the needle felted purse bobs (which can double as a pendant). Not yet introduced to my repertoire, here's  a peek: These have a different set of challenges, namely: beading. Are you ready for this? Best put your best set of eyes forward if you want to try a bit of beading. The biggest challenge is getting that beading needle threaded!

Leave me a message if you are interested in any of these needle felting options. I will take any feedback into account when figuring out the best sort of needle felting class for offer.

Stay tuned for (hopefully) a link to the Eagle article next week. And, again, Elizabeth: thank you very much for your thoughtful and well written article!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Cuteness In My Studio

Cute, Cute, Cute
Just can't help this post, but I'm all about cute today...

Maybe it's because I've been thinking about one of my favorite studios, Boy Girl Party. I just love the level of cute that happens over there. I can't get enough of looking at those cute characters, their expressions, the whimsy of it all...

Perhaps I'm busy looking over at my lovely Glitter House. Cute! I was so excited to take this class at Paper Tales. It's a box, lovely, glittering in the sunbeam where I have it perched, with a sparkling message: Shine.

Maybe it's because the birdies are all about me today, and don't we know; they are very cute. We've had the oriole pair in the yard, flitting about slyly with their lovely yellow-iness. We've had the green twitter-tots (love that,
Susan :o) out there too. Don't know their names, but they fly about in a noisy chattering pack, with their grey green bodies all a-twitter with liveliness. We've had the black phoebie's too, flitting and twirling about, catching one bug after another. I guess Spring must be in the air. I'm noticing lots of birdies gathering sticks and such
... love is in the air too!

Maybe it's my newest needle felted friend, who I named 'Harriet QT'. Can't help it...cute's got a hold of me. Do you notice she's all dressed up... in orange no less... :o)

And, finally, the cutes have spread themselves wide and far upon my studio table. Cutes today are colored in oranges, pinks, reds and purples. See them over there? They are pincushions just waiting for me to finish this post so they can get stitched up properly. Best get going now,
cutes keep calling...

One last thing about the Pay-It-Forward challenge. If you are one of my "3", make sure you email me your address. Never telling when something extra cute might end up in your mailbox...

Now, go have yourself an extra cute day :o)

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

The Pay-It-Forward Post

What's It All About?
When I read Bairbre Aine's post about her Pay It Forward Challenge, it just seemed like the right thing to do by getting involved. Plus, I was one of her 6 people :o) - she's doing two pay it forward challenges. (I am number 6! Just squeaked in) I love this concept, that you can be a blog reader who reads a beloved blog, or even stumbles upon a blog, decide you like it, and by (quickly) commenting on the post, can be selected to receive a lovely handmade item for absolutely free. How great is that?

Here's how it works: The first three (3) people who leave a comment here on my post will receive a handmade item from me, sometime in the next three months. Just one day, out of the blue, at no cost to you, a special something will arrive in your mailbox. I'm sure it will brighten your day :o)

The turnabout is that you must choose to participate in the round robin of giving yourself, by posting the 'pay it forward challenge' on your blog, and partaking in it. It's going to be so much fun, I just know it :o) I can't wait to see who responds...!

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Mr Cabernet...

Tweeting "Hello"
Here is the finished Mr. Cabernet purse, flitting by for a quick visit before he flies off to travel to Colorado. He is being shown to "gallery people" in Telluride to see if he is "most acceptable" to join their flock of gallery related items. He is traveling with a felted children's sweater called "Bambi in a Wooded Glen", which does seem rather appropriate for the wooded areas in the Colorado Rockies, don't you think? I hope they will be deemed relevant and admissible, or perhaps even fabulous and unforgettable... but we will wait patiently, gather up some lint, will not fidget or cause mayhem, whilst the verdict is out... sigh.

BTW, I made Mr. Cabernet 1 of 2, and 2 of 2. Let me know if you are in love, and I will give you first notice when Mr Cabernet #2 is landing in Austin's Gallery. My last purse, Mustard Rose "Magnificent Maggie" sold the instant it made it's spring debut at Austin's. Go by quick, or check my etsy shop to preorder...

Did I say "thank you" for supporting all things handmade? No, not today? Well, thank you very much! I appreciate all your good will more than you will ever know.

Also, stay tuned... I am taking part in the "Pay It Forward" challenge. More on this in my next post...

Wednesday, March 4, 2009


Where Does It Come From?
Today I was inspired by a tiny puff of wool. The piece of wool just appeared out of nowhere on a scrap of sweater fabric. I had been struggling with combinations of colors and patterns, and all the sudden here's this piece of cabernet colored wool, floating out of the air to give me guidance... Overall, I think it was the color. Finally, the creation is allowed to come into focus. The first thing was that the colors and patterns of the sweater fabrics gelled together. The cremes and grays, and patterns, all the sudden they were perfect together. Then, there's a need for
a little bird ... so evident now on the face of the purse
pocket. And now, voila!, the arrival of a little cabernet birdy comes into being. He is wonderful :o) Next, the trim. Thanks to Mr. Cabernet, I now know what I should do... relief and happiness abound. It's all going well. Next will come the sewing together of Mr. Cabernet's purse. Stay tuned... photos to follow!

Thanks for checking in with me, and for supporting all things handmade. Come back soon to see the finished purse. It won't be here long, Mr. Cabernet will be flying off to Colorado soon!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Me, A Teacher?

Yes, it's true!
Ask, and I will teach. Yes, I will venture into a new world. I promise I will be prepared, and will try to be an interesting and informative teacher. Now, let's just hope people sign up :o) No pressure, or anything....

I am offering a Felted Scarf class at my very favorite shop in the world, The Grove at 30th and Juniper in North Park. In my opinion,there is nothing better than spending some 
time at The Grove, being creative and making friends. It's such a wonderful place, and I always seem to run out of time when I'm there. Or, I should say that I walk through the door, and then it seems a whole hour or day flies away, filled with fun, laughter, and people who talk the language you talk. Getting to know Anne and especially Susan has been a main highlight of my life over the past five years. Susan taught me to knit, and I actually worked for Susan for a few months when she started getting really busy in the yarn shop during her first year in business. Now, to be teaching classes there is such a gift for me. I can't 
wait. Here are pictures of the lovely silk felted scarf. It's an easy scarf to create, and a great introduction to needle felting. Plus, you will take home a gorgeous and unique piece of art that works equally well adorning a table top as it does your neck!  The bottom photo is Gail's scarf. While others in the class made simple designs, Susan and Gail made these beautiful freeform patterned scarves that were so artistic, they took your breath away!

When I'm not at the Grove (which is rare), I have taken to visiting my newest other favorite shop, Paper Tales in Point Loma. Paper Tales is a scrapbook store, and much more. In my past life (when my boys were babies), I was quite the scrapbook queen. I have beautiful scrapbooks depicting every moment of my young son's lives. Well, up until about when Kyle was born, when everything pretty much came to a screeching halt. (How does baby #2 do that?) When Kyle turned about 6, and I realized I was still working on his first year of life, I decided to stop pressuring myself, and pretty much threw in the scrapbooking towel. At least I have those 3 beautiful albums to pore over and appreciate. The boys appreciate them too, and I hope they won't hold it against me that I only documented their very young lives...

Michelle at Paper Tales has invited me to teach a pincushion class. I am 
thrilled at the prospect of teaching at Paper Tales too! I will teach those who are interested to make an Itty Bitty Bouquet of Roses Pincushion. These pincushion have been so popular, and if you desire, you can learn to make these for yourself. The class date hasn't been announced yet on the Paper Tales website, but I will give you a hint; April 4th from 3-5pm. Visit Paper Tales fun blog, and soon you will find the listing for the Itty Bitty Bouquet of Roses Pincushion class. They also have samples at the store that you can buy if you think you aren't quite up to making one yourself.

I hope to see you soon at The Grove or at Paper Tales, and will be thrilled to meet you if you are in a class I teach :o) ...It's all very exciting!