Thursday, July 31, 2008

Baby Loves Monkey

My good friend Gina had a baby about a month ago. Little Will needed a monkey friend to hang out with. It looks like Will wasn't quite ready to play yet.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Corkboard, Corkboard on the Wall . . .

I found this great mirror at St. Vinny's and thought the frame would be perfect for the corkboard I've been wanting to put up in my studio. I swapped the mirror for cork, added some paint and voila!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

My Holm Girl

I love Scandinavian design. Maybe it was my first trip to IKEA, or maybe it was learning in design classes that "less is more." However, my love for stuff doesn't always go hand in hand with the simplicity of Scandinavian design.

When my mom and I went to Scandinavia a few years ago it was like being a kid in a candy store. I've never wanted so many unnecessary but oh-so-awesome things in my life. The only thing that stopped me from buying everything in sight was the fact that I was thousands of miles away from home. Note: next time take a boat!

It was only recently that I became aware of Norwegian designer Catherine Holm's dishware. Her line of mid-century pots, pans, bowls, etc. would be the perfect addition to my kitchen—if only there was room!

Monday, July 21, 2008


The first time I saw a rabbit in our backyard I believe I exclaimed, "CUTE!"
However, times have changed. Those rabbits are not cute when they're eating my beautiful flowers.
I realized I had to do something when I found myself flying out the back door early Saturday morning in my nightgown in a bit of a rage over a little bunny eating a breakfast of freshly grown Columbine.
"NOOO! Get out, get OUT!!!"

Something had to be done.
So I built a fence.

And now a few photos of what I'm protecting.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Fabric Finds

I enjoy perusing the clearance items at clothing stores for great fabric prints that might be useful in any number of projects. When I saw this shirt on clearance in the girls’ section of Old Navy, I knew I had to have it.

Now it is the perfect addition to my craft room window.

I love using clothes to turn into other things because I don’t have to sew as many seams! Call me lazy, or call me genius.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Design Projects

I'm currently working on a variety of little side projects.
Two (or more) of them are for my long-time friend Erin who has recently moved. I blurred the address just in case the paparazzi are reading my blog.
The first is their moving cards:

We added the "woof" next to Sadie the dog's name since people would probably wonder when she had her 4th kid.
I also should give proper credit to my partner in all things, Dan, who helped me on this design.

The next project is the return address labels for their moving card envelopes. The envelope is a blue/turq color. Which one do you like? I'd be happy to design some for you, too! I can do custom orders.

Here are some that I've designed in the past:

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Craft Challenge #4

Shelley challenged us with the theme of "dolls." 
This was especially fun for me. I adore dolls. I played with Barbies until I was 12 (or was it 13?). In my defense it was more acceptable to play with dolls back in the '80s, however I'm sure I would have been a closet doll-player in this day and age, too. In fact, I just might be!

Hello, dollies!

Shelley created a doll using felted sweaters. The hair is especially clever - embellishments used at Anthropologie for their Christmas bags. Way to recycle, Shelley.

Carrie knitted an super-cute cat. She needle felted the eyes, nose and heart. So adorable!

I used fabric scraps, felt, embroidery floss, and more to create this pint-sized gal.

And so ends our first installment of the Craft Challenges. We're taking a break for the summer so we can work on our own projects. Carrie: finding a house, Shelley: running her husband's law firm and her daughter's life, and myself: too many to list. I'll post my progress!

Craft Challenge Numero Tres

I will just say up front that neither Shelley, Carrie, or myself won the mood board contest.
However, we all had a lot of fun with this one. It was great to feel like a part of the greater creative blogging community.

The idea behind this contest was to use one or more of Amy Butler's fabric swatches from her new line of prints entitled "Midwest Modern" and create a room based on the pattern, palette, and general "mood" of the swatches. I was bubbling with joy watching all of the great entries roll in. Here are our boards:

Carrie reflected on nature to create an outdoor space entitled "Life Alfresco."

I became engulfed in pink while creating the "Girly-Girl Oasis."

Shelley created her ideal outdoor sanctuary which is appropriately named "Summertime and the Livin' is Easy"

I think we all deserve a kudos. And to think that Amy Butler looked through (and, okay, rejected) our boards made me giddy!

Of the people that were finalists, here are my top 3 favorites:

And my super-all-time-favorite board from Zoe Tucker (I want to be this "children's book designer living in England." Sounds magical, doesn't it?)

Craft Challenge Part Deux

The second Craft Challenge was brought to us by Carrie.
Carrie wanted us to think about our favorite children's book and create a collage based on that book.
I called my mom right away.
me: "Mom, what was my favorite book when I was little?"
mom: "Hmmmm, well Shannon really liked 'Jellybeans for Breakfast'"
me: "Yup, I remember that. Did I have a favorite book?"
mom: "Well . . . I don't think you ever gravitated towards one book. You actually really liked to listen to music - that was more your thing."
I did remember listening to Barry Manilow alot, but how would that even begin to translate into a collage? Maybe another Craft Challenge idea!
me: "The only book I really remember is 'Never Tease a Weasel.'"
mom: "Oh, yes! You and Shannon both really liked that book."
Alright then. We have a winner.

Carrie had an endearing story of her brother using books as a way to calm her nerves in times of stress (no need to worry, folks . . . the stress was of a "natural" kind, so-to-speak). The books she'd often ask him to read were the ones from the Berenstain Bears series.

Shelley had a couple of favorite books. One was "Frog and Toad are Friends" in which Frog loses a button. She used that concept to create a frame:

Shelley, who had a last-minute over-achiever moment, made a second frame. This one came from her fascination and love of fantastical princess books. I imagine these books also inspired what later turned into her choice of studies: costume design!

Next theme: We're entering a Mood Board contest on Decor8

Who are the people in your neighborhood?

My friends Shelley and Carrie and I decided to start a "Craft Challenge" club about a month ago. We've had 4 challenges so far. The first challenge was using any medium we wanted to create something that went with the theme of "neighborhood."

Carrie used Shrinky Dinks to create delightful doodles which she turned into a bracelet. She even gave one to Shelley and me.

Shelley used oil pastels to paint "Birds in the Neighborhood." How sweet are these tweets?

I took on a bit more than I could chew using wood blocks as a base for my "neighborhood" concept. I had to use some heavy machinery which was introduced to me in 7th grade art class of all things. That nugget of knowledge along with a helpful coworker gave me the confidence to throw on the work goggles and turn the spinning blade of the band saw to "on." After the wood pieces were ready to go it was smooth sailing - all paper trimmings which is more my speed. The "neighborhood block" that I designed is meant to be a sort-of toy (minus all of the safety hazards it displays). The roof can be moved so you can create different looks of houses. I had a million ideas of ways to expand this concept. I'll post them when I finally get around to going back to this project.

So ended the first Craft Challenge. I think it was a success. The next theme: Your Favorite Children's Book using collage as the medium.