Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Best Mail Day EVER!

Last week, I had the most amazing mail day! I'm just posting about it now because I was sick all last week, so I'm thrilled to finally be able to show this great stuff off...

I did a trade with two amazingly talented and super cool ladies: Megan of MooganCreations and Lauren of LaurenSmash! I couldn't believe that their fantastic packages got here at the very same time, after a whole week of me not getting anything other than junk mail... It was almost too much for me to handle, considering that I'm someone who is basically obsessed with getting fun mail.

Someone else who loves getting mail is Ruby Roo... She is always there to help open every package and sniff anything new that arrives at our house. She was totally jealous that these were "mommy toys" and not "Ruby toys!" Here she is, absoultely thrilled about our new pillow by Megan:

Here is the wonderful Claire, ready to rock the Florida beaches, made by Lauren. I just love her cool blue color that reminds me of the ocean. She is simply too cute for words, and glancing over at her always makes me smile. Ruby Roo would *love* to get ahold of her to play, but that is so not happening...

Take a look at the amazing handstitched details on this pillows, which has only lived here for a week or so, but is already the envy of everyone who has stopped over and seen it...

Now feast your eyes on these two fantastic zippered pouches by Lauren... As someone who just started sewing *very* recently, I am floored by Lauren's talent and fearlessness with her sewing machine... I mean, she's made a dress and a top using patterns, and she can do zippers! I am so afraid of patterns and zippers... One of these pouches holds my drawing pens, and the other lives in my purse and holds all the little odds and ends that float around my tote. I may need to purchase another one of these for myself one day...I love little pouches and these are the best I've seen out there! (Thanks for the great surprise, Lauren!)

Eek! Megan must be psychic...this little minion surprise is exactly what I would have picked out for myself! I love the colors and can't stop admiring all of the beautiful handstitching - wow! And I love, love, love that she wrote to me on this little Yoshitomo Nara postcard with the picture of a little white dog. Hmm...that reminds me of a little white dog I know...

Ok, I have picked out a million different things I'm going to decorate with my new LaurenSmash stickers, but now I just have to decide which sticker goes where....

I also wanted to show Lauren where Claire is currently living, just to be sure she approves of Claire's new habitat, on the shoulder of my beautiful jewelry model:

Sorry to just gush and gush, but these awesome packages seriously made my WEEK last week, since I was mostly sick in bed and/or the couch all week. Being sick isn't so bad if you've got some cool new treats to look at... :)

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Let's Dress Up My Walls...

...with lovely art from talented Etsy folks!

***Go here to see it.***

(Yay! I figured out to do a screenshot, thanks to the lovely Miss Pepperinapress, who just so happens to make some fantastic work! Thank you so much!!)

Just a few days, then it will be gone forever... I love making treasury lists, and it's been awhile since I've tried to snag a spot. I got one today and had lots of fun putting together this great grouping of visuals from some of the newest additions to my "Favorite Sellers" list. Have fun meeting them!

Pick a Card...

I've been meaning to make business cards for...um, years! I finally finished these today, and here's the front. (Looks sort of washed out on here for some reason, but I assure you, they are *vividly* colored!) I already uploaded and ordered these online, and I can't wait until they get here!!

Thanks for all of the sweet "get well" wishes - you guys are the best! :) I'm actually feeling better today, so I was even able to work on some drawings and post a new item. Whoo-hoo! Feeling like crap is just not fun...

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Sick Again?!

I can't believe it's only Wednesday...this feels like the longest week EVER. I've been completely missing in action lately because I just started teaching summer night classes again this week, despite my being really under the weather and miserable with my sinuses, among other things. Basically, the last three days have been like this: go to bed early, wake up late, eat, go back to sleep, wake up and freak out about teaching, go back to sleep, drag self off of couch to teach classes, go back to sleep, wake up, eat, sleep for the night really early. It sucks, and I get so down when I feel this bad and can't make anything or do anything fun. It's the hardest thing in the world to force yourself to get up and teach a class for several hours and pretend to be fine when inside you feel like crawling into a ball and going back to sleep. Blah. I can't even hear well out of my ears, I'm so backed up with sinus congestion. It's ridiculous. I think I have another week or so on these crazy antibiotics before I have to go get my CT Scan and whatnot. At this point, I'm actually looking forward to it so that I can finally get my sinus issues resolved for once. Ugh. I hate to be such a whiner on my blog, but I also wanted to apologise because I know I owe lots of emails to nice folks out there who have been brightening up my mailbox the past couple of days. Thank you's all around! I'll be posting pictures of my goodies as soon as I get out of this funk. Awesome packages in the mail + the Ruby Roo + Netflix = getting me through feeling like garbage! :)

Saturday, May 19, 2007

"Bad Posture"

A new original in the shop! It's from a series I made using vintage scrapbook pages and antique chair imagery. It was painted with gouache and acrylic and measures 5"x7." I'm going to try to post a few other things before the night's over, since I have another showcase spot tomorrow (Sunday), and I love having new stuff up to share when those showcase spots come around...

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Seller Shout Out: Alicepleasance!

Look at the delicious little strawberry cake on my ring! It was made by my wonderful Etsy friend from Italy, Anna of Alicepleasance Jewelry.

Anna and I traded goodies and fun surprise packages a little while ago, and I've worn my ring many times since, only to get many compliments from friends and strangers... But for some reason, I am always so hungry for cake when I wear this ring!

I love all the little details, and the fact that it really does look so delicious. Anna sculpts all kinds of amazing miniatures herself out of polymer clay. I'm always so amazed at how detailed they look, and they are so unique and unexpected. I also love that the base of the ring is a little cake plate - how cool!

Anna and I exchange emails often, and we found out we have a LOT in common, most notably our mutual love for all things old and forgotten, especially for found photographs. We exhanged found photographs too, so we each can have some new faces in our collection. Anna even sent a fantastic recipie book of great Italian cooking which I love! It seems that she is good with both real *and* fake food! :)

Especially for Anna, I'm posting a photo of one of my thrift store finds from the previous week: an enlarged portrait that has been made into a music box. The song that plays is "Love Story," and I imagine it as being a very treasured memento owned by a woman's sweetheart who was separated from her for a time due to World War II. I can almost picture him seeing her on his nightstand, gazing her way before he drifted off to sleep each night...

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Meet...My Bookcase!

I've been meaning to take a few around-the-apartment pictures for my blog... I would love a chance to invite some of my blog friends over for coffee, but since a lot of you live so far away, this is the next best thing. This will be a slow photo tour, though, done over many separate posts, because my place is JAM packed with art eye-candy!

Right when you walk in the door, there is a big built-in bookcase to your right. It's actually the one bookshelf in the place that doesn't have too many books in it. Instead, it houses my movies, photo albums, games, and a rotating art display! It's got two great pieces made by good friends that I went to art school with; both of them graduated from the MFA program at the Univeristy of Florida a few years ago.

The *amazing* piece above was made by Kymia Nawabi, who makes drawings, paintings, and sculptures that are just as awesome as she is! This small sculptural piece is wrapped with vines, and inside the clock stucture lives a tiny photo album full of miniature photos. When she made this, Kymia was making pieces that were mostly based in self-portraiture, and she painted one of her beautiful works atop a clock face. I love, love, love this piece!! It's hanging out in front of some large paint-by-number pieces that I found in a thrift store. (By the way, those paintings are based on famous 19th century works, but I can't remember who the artist is...does anyone else know? I always sketched in my notebooks and didn't pay attention in art history, ha ha.)

These glass slippers filled with tiny ceramic flowers and doll parts were made by another amazing friend, ceramics artist Renee Audette (who is currently working on building a website). Renee is super talented, and her MFA exhibition was one of the best exhibitions I've ever seen! She is also a really fun person to hang out with - we love going to thrift stores together. I love staring at these little slippers and shaking around their contents...it's nice to have art that keeps giving you something new to look at every time you walk by it. Not only did she make the contents of the slippers, but she also made the glass slippers!

One last photo...my Britney Spears keychain hangs on a brass ballerina that my mom gave me!

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

PBS Rules.

Mark your calendars... PBS will be airing their new documentary, "Craft in America", for the first time on May 30th, from 8 - 11pm, EST. Hope it's good! I always love PBS specials... Has anyone seen the "Art:21" series? Or the "Frontier House" or "Colonial House" series? I love those. A little too much.

I also want to ask if anyone has any promotional materials (business cards, little flyers about your Etsy shop) they'd like me to send out with my packages? If you do, just convo/email me, and I'll send you my address. Send me a bunch! I just ran out of other people's promo stuff in my last group of mailings, and I'd like to get some little ads from my blogging friends to help you promote your shops! :)

There's a new shirt in the shop tonight, and it's here. To be honest with you, I would totally keep this one if it fit me better. I'm really in love with the red/blue/stripes combo...

I also listed my first ever PIF today, after hearing so much about these things in the Etsy forums. It's such a cool way to share the love and brighten up someone's mailbox. I was excited to see that it got snapped up *right* away! It's on its way to its new home tomorrow, and I treated myself to a little PIF in return (actually, a few days ago)... I can't wait to get my postcard from Japan! I love getting mail from far away!

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Victorian Girls Don't Cry

New print! Yay!

I finished this one up last night, and I was super excited to get it into the shop. It's here.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Thrifters Gone WILD!

Sorry I've been so out of touch lately, but the second half of my week was complicated with scary doctors and a little out-of-town jaunt! The doctor thing is not as bad as it sounds (I hope!)... I have chronic sinus infections. I am *always* sick and can't really go outside much due to my allergies. I've gone to lots of allergists, but nothing seems to help, so I had to go to an ENT this week who numbed my nose & put tubes in there, yuck. Now I'm on three week (!) antibiotics and have to go back at the end of that time to get a CT/brain scan...yikes! He said it's not as bad as it sounds, basically they want to be able to view my sinues in their entirety to make sure there's nothing weird going on in there. I'm trying to not think about it until I have to...

My other news is good news, because I went to Jacksonville, FL to visit the awesome Miss Samantha and go thrifting. Sam lives in Brooklyn now, but she was visiting her mom for Mother's Day (so sweet!), so I drove there to see her. We went to art school together, and she graduated a few years before me with a degree in photography. We got TONS of stuff, broke our own "no tchotchke" rules, and indulged (?) in Sonic and Arby's, two things she can't get up north. Right now, it basically looks like a thrift shop threw up all over my living room. Ha.

I'm such a dork - this is the first time I've ever driven a long distance (well, just 2 hours) on the highway by myself, so I was pretty proud. It's kind of sad to be 25 and have a fear of highway driving, but I just haven't had practice in it. I guess I always had parents/boyfriends/friends who were willing to drive on trips... This was a big accomplishment for me, trite as it sounds! I actually *liked* driving that long. (My iPod helped out a lot by choosing a great driving mix through the "shuffle" setting.) I'd have liked it even more if there were no other cars around...

"Wow, look at all of our new junk!"

"I can't wait to dive right in..."

Thursday, May 10, 2007

I Live on a David Lynch Movie Set.

Check out these pictures I took today:

Nope, I didn't find some cool new setting on my camera; that is actually how it looks here due to all the smoke and ash that has been floating around from the Georgia/Florida wild fires. It's all misty and weird, and everything in the nearby distance looks fuzzy and obscured. It smells *so* bad, too...

Monday, May 07, 2007

Get Off the Internet and Hem Those Pants!

I got tagged a few days ago by Maggie of Gasupthezamboni. It's taken me so long to post about it, because I had a really busy weekend. On Friday night, I had a party at my place, which was a truly brilliant idea, considering Saturday morning is the only day of the week I have to wake up early to go to work! So I was sleepy/cranky/dehydrated on Saturday and *still* catching up on my sleep right up until this morning... It was a really good party, though.

Okay, here are the rules to this little game of tag:
* Write 7 random facts/habits about yourself on your blog.
* Choose another 7 people to get tagged and list their names (then make sure you go to those people's blogs to let them know they're "it").

ONE. I can listen to the same song on repeat play for 6 days in a row. On day 7, I can listen to it once, then never again in life.

TWO. I sleep with my puppy every night. We spoon. It's cute.
(By the way, check out her MySpace page; she's single, and she's into you.)

THREE. I hate sweating. I live in Florida. It's a problem.

FOUR. I've recently (last week) begun an intense relationship with the show, "Grey's Anatomy." Maybe you've heard of it? We're --this close-- to going steady.

FIVE. I only clean the bathroom when people are coming over. Otherwise, I like to wallow in my own filth.

SIX. I'm addicted to Reese's snack bars. No, not those little ones with the cookie junk in them, the big ones with the rice krispies inside them. I eat two packs a week. They're good for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. They sell them next to granola bars at CVS, so that means they're healthy.

SEVEN. My bathtub has a red ring around the tub...and a blue one...and a black one... Those are the last three colors I've screenprinted. I wash the ink out in my tub. What my landlords don't know (I have a dog/lots of patches of carpet missing/black ink spill in studio/hot pink ink spill in bedroom/burnt stuff/this list won't end) won't hurt them!

Consider yourselves TAGGED:
Yasmin/Miss Mish Mish
Rachelle/Art Indulgence

I just can't handle a post without pictures...

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Tie. One. On.

Just as promised... It's here! This is one of my new line of skirts called "Tie One On," made using all recycled materials. The vintage skirt is made of chocolate brown thick knit jersey, and sewn onto the skirt are two halves of a vintage tie, adding unexpected detail & design! I haven't seen anyone use ties like this before, and I came up with the idea while at the thrift shop eyeing all the wonderful patterns of ties and all the plain jane vintage skirts... I think they are a perfect pair, and both the tie and the skirt were screenprinted many, MANY times to acheive the complexity and the layering effect of the skirt. The coolest part are the little details: the back of the skirt has a secret compartment for a pen, while the front of the skirt has a little loop for a keychain or other attachment. I had so much fun using the decorative stitches on my sewing machine to attach the tie, and there are some bright red handstitched details as well. You can view it at my Etsy shop here.

I'm so excited about these new skirts with all of their detail and allure. I love spending more time on each item to make them extra complex and one of a kind. I am also really excited about the new stuff I've been working on because I plan to use many more recycled materials in the future. A few of my friends have given me some of their old clothes to print on, and I love roaming the vintage shops in my area to find new and unique items. Pairing the vintage pieces together to make something entirely new is even more fun! I also love the idea of sustainability and putting things to use that would otherwise be cast off and thrown away. (I'm very interested in this idea with my artmaking as well.) Not to mention the positive environmental ramifications of using these types of materials, but it also means that I'm not interested in purchasing garments that have been made in terrible sweatshop conditions then imported into the U.S.

I also use American Apparel shirts sometimes, which is a U.S. made, sweatshop-free clothing company. My only beef with that company is that I wear a large at their store, and I never wear a large anywhere else! I leave feeling like a cow.! We can't all be size zeros, American Apparel.... Some of us wouldn't *want* to be a size zero!

(By the way, don't you love those hot new heels that I'm modeling in these photos?! I do.)

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Seller Shout Out: Swedeprep!

This is me happily wearing the first necklace I ever coveted on Etsy... This Fruits (you know, the Japanese magazine of street fashions?) necklace was made by the talented Steph of Swedeprep. The charms are little miniature Japanese teenagers with Steph's handmade beaded flowers and pretty accents. She's got a lot of amazing pieces in her shop, not to mention she is one of the nicest people I've met on Etsy so far. (And that's saying a lot...there are a lot of nice people on Etsy!) I got this necklace in a trade, and I made Steph the bag that's shown here. Yay for Swedeprep!

I also want to give a shout out to the United States Postal Service, who are far more efficient, friendly, and on-the-ball than those gross guys over at UPS, who made dropping off a package take a mere 25 minutes (I would have been to post office and back within that time frame if using USPS!), charged all kinds of weird $5.00 surcharges, then proceeded to make my package arrive at a juried art exhibition 2 days too late after upgrading me to a *guaranteed* service. Ugh, I'd never have used them if this gallery hadn't made us use them... Luckily they are nice enough to still exhibit my piece despite its tardiness. Not to mention that when I go to my favorite (i.e. closest-to-my-house) USPS stop, I am greeted with a friendly, "What did we sell on Etsy today?" (Which was formerly, "What did we sell on eBay today?") Guess who will be getting some angry phone calls tomorrow? Hint: the colors brown and mustard yellow, ick!

Someone is ONE!

The attention shifted from artwork today, because a little puppy who is super cute just turned one year old! Ruby Roo got to do whatever she wanted to today: ate tons of treats, played with her doggy friends, and she was visited by her "grandparents" (my mom and dad). She was a tired little bear by the end of the night, so I got in a little sewing time and put some finishing touches on some clothing pieces I'm working on. Expect some photos tomorrow! Here's some hints... The new items are WAY more complex and intricate than what's in the shop so far. Think retro...details...and a conservative yet sexy new look. I'm excited!