Monday, November 9, 2009

Working outside my comfort zone... Whew! It's fun!

I decided to take a challenge from a friend and work on something outside of my comfort zone.  So, I pillaged through my supplies for a medium that I could work in... I discovered polymer clay!  WOW!  It is so fun to work with.  I enjoyed creating pendants from scratch and watching them grow from a blob of clay into a beautiful piece of art!

Of course, I added my typical "Heather" flare to each of them and painted them with my favorite colors... and added ephemera... and added a bit of this and that to come up with these marvelous pendants...

On some of the pendants, I added both ephemera and embellishments....

And again on some I added pieces of found objects like antique fork handles or crystals...

I also used rubber stamps to add texture and to create more depth.

I'm finding that the more I work in this medium, I love it.  I am stretching my comfort level as an artist and releasing my fear.  Not only that, but I feel that a handmade pendant means more to a piece than a store bought pendant.  Having a one of a kind handmade pendant means that you will not see your friends wearing the exact same necklace.  You are unique so why shouldn't your jewelry be??? 

Don't get me wrong, working outside of my comfort zone was scary at first.  I was nervous because it made me feel like I did when I first started creating art to sell.  However, I read and researched polymer clay and became knowledgeable before I tried it.  I was also inspired by a piece of jewelry that I saw in one of my favorite magazines. 

The challenge was difficult, but rewarding.  Now, I am working on a new challenge that my friend Lisa brought up... minimizing my palatte when I paint... Stay tuned to see how that works!!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Happy Halloween, y'all!!

Sharing the holidays with family is the best.  For my family, Halloween kicks off the holiday season as we have Joel's birthday on November 10th, Thanksgiving, my birthday on December 16th, Christmas and then New Years!  Lancaster, South Carolina's art community is alive with all the wonderful festivities.  Not only will we be offering workshops that will take us into the Christmas season, we will be kicking off the new year with the Artisans Center Gala.

Above are my beautiful children, Erin and Joel.  Erin is a witch wearing a vintage black evening dress.  Joel is Mr. Incredible - the hero from his favorite Pixar movie.

The Halloween Art Draw on Friday October 30th was successful!  Not only were there many of my wonderful friends and family members in costume, a good time was had by all.

I am pleased to say that there were lots of handmade costumes this year rather than store bought ones.  I admit, I had to purchase Mr. Incredible for Joel... but how can you say no to a boy that can't trick-or-treat because of food allergies???

My husband Michael and I were dressed in our Halloween bests as our favorite cartoon characters, Lucy Van Pelt and Charlie Brown.  I made both of the costumes, but honestly threw Michael's together on Friday afternoon.  I was also in a costume making frenzy because I made a friend's Dorothy costume as well.  Here we are pictured above.  Michael is without the sheet that he was wearing for most of the night.  It was cute, but got a little hot as the night went on and made it difficult to talk to people, eat and drink.

Also worth noting, each costume that placed in the costume contests throughout the night were handmade.  Since I have been a part of Etsy, I believe in the handmade movement.  I would like to challenge my readers to create handmade gifts for the holiday season because handmade gifts are more thoughtful.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Blog redesign...

For a more aesthetic appearance and personal feel, I decided to redesign my blog and I think it looks nice.  I chose the beautiful 'rustic bees' background from the Graphics Fairy, whose link is in the upper right hand corner of my blog.  Like I have said in the past, I like to 'date for a while before I marry' so don't think you've stopped at the wrong blog if you see something different.  I think I will be trying different designs and layouts until I find something permanent.  What do you think? 

I really like the graphics that the Graphics Fairy offers.  Not only are they just the whimsy that I love, but they are FREE!  Check out her blog and see what she has to offer!

The link is:


Thursday, September 24, 2009

A picture paints a thousand words....

How do we make our online venues better??? What do we do to ensure that we positively represent our quality product?

The answer, my friends is probably not simple, but I can tell you in one word: PICTURES! Since we are online, our pictures have to do the talking for us. Our customers can't hold our product and turn it over in their hands. They can't try it on... We have to have a set of really good pictures that do more than show our product. Our pictures have to speak to the customer.

I got a compliment today on my pictures - for the first time ever!! Another seller told me that the lightly scripted background that I started using for my pics this week was "a classy touch to my beautiful jewelry." This made me blush, but it also made me want to retake the pictures for the rest of the items in my shop. However, that would mean taking about 250 pictures in one day, so I decided that it will take some time to get them all done. I am taking this critique to heart.
I read a great piece of information that I purchased from RiskyBeads on Etsy. This instructional masterpiece really helped me see the light. I would like to send kudos. Many thanks!!
My advice to anyone who has put their heart and soul into their online shop, but feels like they need to do more is to buy this book! Not only read it, but heed the advice.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Google Base update!

As of five o'clock today, I noticed in the Google reporting for Google Base (say that three times really fast!) that my impressions and page views have picked up... some. I renamed ALL 80ish of my items and realized that cute, artistic inspired names are just not what gets Google search query results.

When naming your item, for Etsy or anywhere else, think of how your customer would search for what they want to buy. For instance, my necklace posted in the last blog was titled "Minerva's Garden" - well who would actually search for that online??? It doesn't even exist. So, I changed the name to "Garden of Good and Evil necklace with turquoise and crystal" and it has gotten several more views in just a few minutes.

I am glad that my jewelry will be getting views after the first twenty minutes it was listed. I will be working to monitor this all day tomorrow as well. Don't worry, I will keep you posted!

What is in a product name???

I consume the informatin in the Etsy forums about bettering our shops... Some buyers like creative names for merchandise, but does that get you in Google search results? I've been studying and reading and more studying and more reading and watching podcasts and webcasts and any other kind of cast out there...

Although I am not an expert on the subject by any means I have decided that I am going to take the advice of the more successful sellers on Etsy: Practice makes perfect! Experiment with trial and error to find the best way to market your shop.

I signed up for Google Base this weekend in order to get the hang of it and learn from the reports before Etsy takes over the task and enters our merchandise in Google Base for me. By having access to the results myself for a period of time, I can learn the steps necessary to get more page views of my products - and perhaps increase my sales.

From everything that I have read, Google Base uses our product names - not our Etsy tags - in their search query results. So, in the middle of everything that I have to do today, I have decided to take time to rename all 80ish art jewelry items in my shop, re-upload the Google Base feed and see if that changes things. I'll keep you posted on how it turns out. Wish me luck!

Monday, September 14, 2009

A new medium... Inspiration or perspiration?

This weekend I took on a task which required me to work in a medium that I am unfamiliar with - crystals and beads. I know that I use crystals in many of my projects, but not a project complete with crystals, sparkle, glam and innovation. I had to create something that I had never created before - something that required lots of thought and research. I had to draw out the plan first before I created in order to make sure that I had enough materials.

Don't get me wrong. I love beads and beading. However, creating jewelry with few or no metal components is really challenging. I am always tossing a chain in a project or using something recycled. I love gaudy jewelry. I love big and flamboyant pieces of wearable art that will reveal what is hidden deep in my soul.

I created two pieces of jewelry for a submission that I cannot discuss nor show pictures of... This is the hard part because I love the feedback from my friends and colleagues. Perhaps it is my narcissitic nature that comes with being a Sagittarius. I don't know. Rest assured, they meet my quality standards and need for flamboyance.

Thought for the day: Do something outside your comfort level. You will rise to the challenge.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Honoring other Etsians - Narcissism takes a back seat today...

Typically, I blog about myself and what I am doing. However, today I have decided to blog about others in the Etsy community that I have personally purchased items from. Yes, I know I create jewelry and can sew, but there are times that another person's work just speaks to me. So take a look and enjoy the work of the three ladies that I am highlighting today: Do-Rah! Designs, Musette and Saints and Sinners.

Do-Rah! Designs recently created a FABULOUS lunch bag for a very happy customer (me) and I feel that I must sing Debi's praises. Not only is this bag beautiful, it is well made. Below is the link to her shop.

Here is the link to this gorgeous safari tote:

Now, here is one of my favorite jewelry shops that I look to when I am searching for THE necklace or bracelet - Musette. There is a SALE going on this weekend so PLEASE check it out! I may be purchasing another of Musette's beautiful necklaces.

This is the link to her shop:

And here is my FAVORITE listing:

Finally, I want to highlight one of my favorite all-around artists and jewelry designers- Barbe Saint John! Barbe visited us here in Lancaster last May and taught the House of Dreams workshop. I can also say that I am the proud owner of FOUR (4) of Barbe's jewelry designs.

Here is the link to Barbe's Etsy shop:

And here is my FAVORITE listing:

Here is the link to this listing:

So, ladies and gentlemen - PLEASE check out these shops because if I am pleased with the quality and pure beauty of their work (I am soooo picky), then I know you will be too.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Raison d'etre???

With my exhibition at the University of South Carolina - Lancaster less than three weeks away, my stress level has been on full blast! What if I don't have enough art to fill the space even though I have fully inspected it. What if something that I have been working on breaks or gets ruined before the show (clumsy is my middle name)?

I have to send my exhibit name, bio, exhibition resume, artist statement and picture to Fran Gardner today, so I am really down to the wire. I don't know why I am fretting and stressing out so much when she thought enough of my art to ask me to exhibit. Does every artist feel this way?
I wanted to give you a small preview of what I will have on display. The piece to the left is one of the items that will not be for sale, but on display. This reliquary necklace features an antiqued sterling painter's palette with genuine peridot, ruby, topaz, blue topaz, pink sapphire and another ruby. I found this at a vintage jewelry store in Beaufort, South Carolina. It also features large blue and clear crystals with small Swarovski crystals and an antiqued brass chain. The copper hanging tag reads "ETRE" - the French verb "to be." I created this for myself because painting and art are my raison d'etre.
I also have created a number of hanging reliquaries such as the piece below. "The Loneliness" depicts a boy whose sole purpose (raison d'etre) on this earth is to love you. I included a small internal shrine within with his heart attached. You can't read the words "touched" behind the heart because of the angle of my camera, but it's there.

Another piece that I created for the USC-L show is my bicycle collage. What child does not love a bicycle? It seems to be the raison d'etre for all children worldwide. As a matter of fact, I have very fond memories of riding bicycles with my cousin Christy at Lake Mayer during my childhood years.

Each piece in this exhibit depicts a different "reason to be" throughout a person's life. Therefore, I have solved the biggest issue I faced with getting all my information to Fran. I have finally discovered the name of my exhibit.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Jack the Dripper - Jackson Pollock still inspires me...

Jackson Pollock is one of my favorite modern artists. In fact, I literally become overjoyed at the thought of one of his paintings. Actually, the truth is, I become insanely excited at the thought of seeing or touching one -- yet, I know that touching is out of the question -- the museum would cart me off in cuffs. The closest that I can come is to create my own Jackson Pollock inspired paintings.
I created this small necklace using a technique that is called a "controlled drip" that Jackson Pollock perfected at a MUCH LARGER scale. After I dripped my paint on my canvas, I guided the drips into different directions using the edge of a blunt metal knife. After that, I used a wire hair pick to pull through the paint. That caused the "pulled" look.
This necklace is for sale in my Etsy shop and has had over 20 views since I uploaded it ten minutes ago. This is a boost for my ego because I have items in the shop that have been there a month and have less views than that. Please note that I can create custom ordered canvas necklaces with your favorite color palette. I hope to hear from you soon :-)

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Auto-immunes... are they living hell or are we lucky to have such a muse?

Yesterday, I was perusing my Etsy store and came across a wonderful lady who has fibromyalgia. As weird as it sounds, I was excited that she bookmarked one of my shrine necklaces. You see, I have an auto-immune also - two to be exact. I have lupus (SLE) and secondary Sjorgren's.

Many people, even some of my friends, believe that auto-immune diseases are "in our heads" and not a real disease. If that is so, could someone please tell my muscles, skin, swollen fish eyes and other unmentionable parts of my body that tend to become inflamed?

I went to doctor after doctor and at first the consensus was that I was "sleep deprived, sex deprived and crazy." Another WRONG diagnosis was that I had severe food allergies. The allergist explained that I all of a sudden just "became" allergic to all foods except milk, rice and fish. I was not allergic; therefore, I became severely malnourished and lost muscle control.

When I went to my GYN for an issue that I thought was unrelated, he immediately suggested Sjogren's. He consulted with my family doctor whose office is across the large shared waiting room and he agreed. I was quickly referred to a rheumatologist where after a few short tests, I was officially diagnosed. However, Sjogren's is rarely a primary auto-immune.

My rheumatologist scheduled many tests to rule out diseases such as ALS, Parkinson's, MS and a few others that I can't remember. After the battery of tests, I was actually relieved to find out that it was just lupus.

I am learning to live with the two auto-immune diseases. It is hard, but my art helps in the sanity department. When I am feeling isolated and alone, I can literally isolate myself in my studio and create. The hardest part of learning to live with an auto-immune is that since I LOOK healthy, I must be healthy. Since I am not in a wheelchair, use a walker or carry a cane, then I must not be in constant pain. Since I don't have big purple lesions and bright red skin, then my skin must not hurt to touch. Since I am not coughing and vomiting, I must not be in discomfort. This is how I had to explain it to my children: I am 'inside-sick' because people can't see or hear my illness, but it is real just the same.

This all brings me to the auto-immune shrine. I created this shrine so people can SEE my illness. Perhaps this will make it all the more real to them.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Bottle Baby

I LOVE mini liquor bottles. I don't know what I like more about them - the sweetness of the tiny bottle or the nostalgic feeling I get when I remember that South Carolina used to only sell booze in the mini bottles. Perhaps it is the whole art aspect of the little bottles. The mini Crown Royal bottles seem to make perfect bodies for my HooDoo dolls.
This sweet little fellow is made from epoxy putty, epoxy resin, a mini crown royal bottle, a kewpie doll head, various porcelain doll extremities, ephemera, wings, little red rubber balls and a brass envelope around it's neck. Inside the envelope is a shiny brass note that says "I love you."
I created this HooDoo doll so the owner could remember how important it is to believe that you can be loved. HooDoo dolls are a big deal in the Low Country of South Carolina and with the Geechie folk in Savannah, Georgia. HooDoos are the opposite of VooDoo dolls. One would possess a HooDoo doll for good fortune, true love, prosperity and any other positive affirmation that the owner wishes to call upon herself.
This little guy is not quite finished. He still needs a shrine home so he can be put away when he's not in use. Typically, the HooDoo doll is wrapped in a white shroud (the VooDoo doll is supposed to be wrapped in black) and kept out direct daylight. This is because the sun's powerful rays could overpower the little doll and the incantation may not work.
I hope you enjoyed the little taste of the Low Country and Savannah because they are such a huge inspiration to my art.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Brass Monkey - the Funky Monkey!!

I've not blogged in a month! I could make up excuses like "I've been busy" or "I haven't had any good topics." Well, the truth is... I've been lazy when it comes to keeping up with my blog. Not like 'fat and lazy' but there have just been other priorites.

I have been going to the my studio at Chastain's Studio Lofts and painting. I took a shrine workshop with Barbe Saint John, who is a fabulous mixed media artist in the San Francisco area. I participated in Femme Fest in Charlotte, which I might add -- WAS A BLAST and for a good cause!
In the mix of all these activities, I have been creating. My friend Robin brought me a bag of goodies from a free bin at a yard sale. Betsy Craig brought me some old and rusty things. Thank you - both of you!!
The reason that I mention this is that Robin brought me a brass monkey hook thing. I fell in love with this brass monkey. I hung this little brass monkey over my desk in my home studio and just observed him for about a week. Every day, he made me smile just by thinking about him and then looking up. He's such a playful little guy!

To make a long story short, I had to create a necklace out of this cute little monkey. He cheered me up just looking at him. When I tried the necklace on, I felt the urge to dance. I became silly. I felt as if the energy from this fabulous little guy took over my mind and spirit. It was such a fun wear.

I teetered back and forth on whether or not I would keep him for myself. However, being the idealist that I am, I figured that there is someone out there who could use a little uplifting in their life. They would probably need this monkey more than me. So, here he is folks! Here's my little brass monkey; he's such a funky monkey.
You can visit my funky monkey in my Etsy shop at:

(PS: I do play the Beastie Boys in my studio quite often...)

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

A bicycle built for two

While on a rainy day bank excursion with Joel-zilla, yesterday's four-year-old shopping companion, we came across a shopping center that I had never seen before. Of course, I had no choice but to stop in and see what was there. The shopping center was filled with trees and some of the stores were tucked away and separated from the other stores. This was a welcome change of scenery.

Among the typical chain stores, I found a store that had character. Since it was a chain store as well, I had been to its sister establishments before. However, like this hidden shopping center, this store had character. It was darker... older... it just had an all around strange air about it. I LOVED IT!

Inside the store, Joel-zilla and I stumbled across a slue of broken toys in a discount bin. These weren't ordinary toys -- these were wooden toys like the ones that kids played with when my parents were small. Of course, we got all of them and made a mad dash for the checkout.

While maneuvering the aisles so Joel-zilla wouldn't cause any mass destruction, I heard a familiar and sweet "hello." This friendly voice was my friend and fellow artist, Tiffany. Joel-zilla was proud to show Tiffany his treasure - a frog on a bicycle!

Joel's toy was not one of the broken ones, but it did have a clearance tag, which made it even better. A frog on a bicycle, I must say, is one of the strangest things either of us had ever seen. It was hand painted and has such amazing detail. The words of a familiar song wandered into my brain - "but you'll look sweet upon the seat of a bicycle built for two."

After we paid for our treasures and left the store, we decided to check out one of the craft stores in the shopping center. While searching for some cigar-sized boxes for an upcoming workshop, I noticed a bicycle pendant. Not your ordinary bicycle pendant... but one that had character. Should I expect any less from this magical shopping center that seemed to appear just for the light-hearted and creative?

I didn't see any other bicycle pendants. Like Joel's toy, this bicycle appeared for us. The song entered my head again. "Daisy, Daisy...I'm half crazy all for the love of you..." I had to have this pendant!! I had to create something fabulous with it and it would be for me and I would love it!!!

Joel-zilla and I paid for our boxes and the pendant and went home. We chatted along the way about the shopping center and our interesting finds. Joel decided to name his frog "Francois" - hehe - and we talked about what to do with the pendant. I've posted a picture of the pendant with the chain. I am certainly not finished with the magical bicycle necklace. For some reason, I just don't think I could do it justice. We'll see, I suppose. Wish me luck!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

My magical box of pleasure

Yes, I know how this appears. However, I feel like a kid at Christmas when I know a box of goodies is coming in the mail. Today, it was FedEx that brought my box of "magical" goodies. My box of goodies is for a workshop that I can't wait to attend! As a mixed media and assemblage artist, it is going to be a pleasure to learn from another artist - another alchemist! Barbe Saint John will be in Lancaster, South Carolina on May 23 to offer tricks of the trade and her perspective on this type of art that many of us find so fascinating.

I will be collecting knick-knacks and bibleots for my "House of Dreams" and for my husband's. My box today contained some old taipei pieces, a miniature domino, a new apron (guilty pleasure), some vintage three sided dice and frosted glass... OH and these fabulous door hinges. I can't wait to put this stuff together and I pray that I create a shrine worthy to house these hinges.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Haints and Boo Hags in Geechie culture

What is Geechie?

The urban dictionary defines Geechie as a person of caucasion descent who hails from the South Carolina Low Country and the Coastal Empire of Georgia. Geechies have a strong Gullah influence. Geechies are highly influenced by religion, the saints and voodoo.

Why am I blogging about Geechie?

Because y'all... I AM Geechie. We have interesting superstitions and strong beliefs of "other worldly" things. As a child, I was told the spooky stories of the different haints and boo hags. I was scared senseless that boo hags would bite my feet if I went around barefooted after dark and that the angry haints would sew my mouth shut if I told a lie. I still hold some superstitions of my childhood. For instance, I will not put my purse on the floor. I'm not afraid of germs; I am afraid that the boo hags will get my money by "ridin' in my bag until all my money get gone." There will always be a window in my home that is adorned with colored bottles to keep the haints out.

What is the difference between a haint and a boo hag?

A boo hag is similar to a vampire, except that it is not interested in your blood... a boo hag wants your breath, your energy, your happiness and your money. Boo hags don't have skin so they are red and angry.

A haint is a typical lost soul, although nowadays, a mean woman (er... a um... well *ahem* a bitch) is also referred to as a haint. Haints are afraid of colored glass, nails and a specific color of blue that is referred to simply as "haint blue."

How has Geechie influenced my art?

Geechie has influenced my art in many ways. Recently, I have created a second "haint tree." My haint trees are made from a botttle that has a controlled break in the center. There is a charm or pendant that hangs in the bottle from the corked top that is accessable from the broken center. The cork of the bottle has wire coming out of it with colored glass beads. My haint trees are on a haint blue base. These little darlings are guaranteed to keep out the haints and boo hags while expelling any voodoo workins' that are ailin' ya.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Is the name of an art show that important?

After pondering different titles for my upcoming show in May 2010, I finally came up with a pretty good one: Captain Bibelot's Fortune - A Vignette of 2D & 3D Expression. Hmmmm... Is this name thought provoking for my type of art? Will people get it? Is the name too corny? Does corny matter?

Bibelot: a small object of curiosity, beauty, or rarity. Bibelot is French, which I find quite metaphoric since I am known as Madame Teasley on Etsy. I've not shared this name with mon mari yet...

Let me know what you think? Does the name make or break an art show?

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Number five in Seven Deadly Sins of Womanhood - Homewrecker

Here it is in all it's splendor sitting on a pedastal at Chastain's Studio Lofts. This was a very personal addition to my womanhood series... I felt much of the pain all over again as I created it.

Homewrecker. The definition of the woman (er... women) who aided in the ruin of my first marriage. Well, shoot! I'm better off. I know this. My fabulously supportive and extremely hot husband knows this. Everyone who knows me, knows this is a fact. I have one question: Why did it hurt so badly to create this piece of art?

My home was wrecked in 1997. My life (as I knew it) was over. I was destroyed - but like a phoenix I rose from the ashes to become a new woman... a stronger woman! I take pride in what I have become since 1997. I am a mother. I am a wife. I am an artist. I am.... ME! I am a stronger woman because of the other woman - the homewrecker.

I tried to hate her; however, it seemed to consuming - time, energy, money, life. She gave me an unwanted gift that I am actually grateful for - the rest of my life to live!! So even though I fully believe that homewrecking is WRONG - my homewrecker empowered me. This is a tribute to her - the woman who used all of her powers of feminism for EVIL.

Monday, April 13, 2009

How do I create a commissioned piece and still add my personal message?

Assuming that you hve already discovered your artistic voice, how do you create a commissioned piece of art and add your message? This seems to be my biggest buggaboo in creating commission pieces. How do I create what the person wants while still maintaining my integrity as an artist?

The first thing that I have to remember is that the commissioner likes my work and likes my message before I even begin the piece of art - that's why they asked me to create it for them in the first place!

My message is that everything has a purpose: Everything is useful, everything has beauty and everything has sentiment. Perhaps I am taking a psychological approach to my art through my voice. As stated in Maslow's hierarchy of needs - everything has a desire to be needed. Everything as a desire to fit in.

Applying my message to a commission piece, takes time and much thought. My most recent commission was a "golf theme" painting. This was particularly hard, because I don't see the golf course the same way as someone who plays golf does. To me, the golf course is a dark, dreary place where balls are lost - never to be seen again. My husband, a golf enthusiast, sees the golf course as a magical place where men get together to be guys. It's sentimental to them.

After painting over the canvas several times, I was down to the wire on that painting. As a matter of fact, I delivered the painting still tacky from the master's mix. I had to make this painting of something so foreign to me reflect my voice. I had an opportunity to speak through this painting. I'm still not sure what I had to say with this painting, but I made a point to say it.

After searching for something... anything... that I could find some sort of attraction to, I found a picture of an antique golf club. It looked like a club that my husband keeps, which was his father's club. I painted a close-up of this club. To me, it was beautiful because it was old and had a story. I began painting this antique club.

After I finished my painting, I had to add pieces of me to it. I added nails, which I use on every piece of non-wearable art that I create. Nails represent the words of my father, which I feel quite confident he read in an email or something. The statement was "Words are like nails, you can remove the nail but the hole still remains." The words ring true. I added a nail for each time I cursed while creating that painting.

I also added some numbers. Why not? There are numbers on a golf course. These numbers were important because that's how many days I bitched and moaned about the how I was going to start the painting when I don't play golf.

The person who received my golf theme painting loved it; however, I was not as thrilled with it as I have been with other pieces.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Lancaster, South Carolina inspired necklace

Face it, Lancaster, SC is the Red Rose city of the south and each resident has been through their share of petals and thorns this year. Here's my tribute to the town that I CHOSE to make my home.
Lancaster, SC citizens are just a fabulous mixture of good ole southern folks, smart and loving congregations and creative artisans trying to emerge from the economic downturn with a positive light. We've been through a lot lately - from a courthouse arson that ruined a beautiful and fabulous historical building on Main St. to being labeled as "Most vulnerable town in the US" by Forbes magazine. Well, phooey on them! I think we're FABULOUS!
Wear this with PRIDE Lancaster lady!

The pattern features red roses and polka dots on a black background. The tin was pounded flat and sanded in order to smooth the surface and remove sharp edges. The pendants are smooth to the touch.The focal point is a red heart bead that came from a broken necklace that I found in a parking lot in Rock Hill as I was loading my groceries. I put an ad in the paper because I would be frantic over losing such a beautiful object, but no one claimed it. It amazes me when such wonderful things are just tossed away without a care in the world. I just don't understand how people can do that. So, the point is, I don't know the age or mineral content of the bead. It looks glass to me. And, I do feel the need to say that all of my found items are completely sanitized before I upcycle them because I am afraid of germs.
Genuine coral beads accent the necklace as well.

Monday, March 16, 2009

The evolution of altered art

Altered art has moved from our walls and their personal shrines to our jewelry boxes. Artists are creating beautiful pieces of jewelry out of everyday items such as spoons, forks, dice, dominos, scrabble tiles and many other things.

Places that altered art jewelry can be purchased include your local art gallery, online stores suchs as and other Etsy stores and flea markets.

With the "recession" and the economic downturn, art is one of the few areas where there is appreciation. So why not turn the old bakelite charms and pieces of jewelry into something new and exciting!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

I've not written in a while due to being overwhelmed with all the nothingness there is to do, but I plan to get in the hang of this staying home thing. It's difficult to keep a schedule up when one hasn't even been made.

I did learn that the key to not staying in my pajamas all day is to get my shower first thing in the morning. Now, I have to work on getting Joel to pre-school so I can go to my studio on Main St. and work on actual paintings.

Since I've not actually left my house (in body) since Thursday, I know that I must make it to the studio tomorrow. I shall have company! My BFF, Jenny will be joining me as she gets a mid-month vacation from The Lancaster News.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

I suppose that I need to make a schedule on when I will be blogging, working on Etsy stuff, creating art and when I will be doing my exercises and household chores... Wow... Next week, Joel will be at pre-school (I'm too cheap to pay for a full week when he doesn't get one because of the inclimate weather). I will be working at the studio downtown during that time and I can't wait to be free of the contstraints that have been weighing me down for the past two weeks...

I also need to be working on what inventory will be at Chastain's and what inventory will be in my Etsy store. It's dangerous to be selling the same item in two locations. I don't see it happening, but what if the same item sells at both places before I can remove it from one? I have the craziest fears.

Exercise is an important part to living with my disorder. I need to work on getting that into my schedule. I think that I will be using the stationary bike and the ab lounge regularly. I need to get my sleeping habits under control as well. There is not a single solitary reason that I should stay awake until the rooster's crow. I also need to learn to put the computer down and sleep in my bed not where I happen to be typing. This would be better for my back, that's for sure!

Well, gotta get busy working on my house cleaning so George and I can cleanse it.

Love y'all!


Monday, March 2, 2009

To paint or not to paint... that is the question

So do I paint the golf course or do I paint the fun stuff... Hmmm
Wow, I guess I am blogging - finally caught up to the 21st century. Now that I don't work for der Teufel, I can blog my heart out. Apparently, personal blogs were considered a falsche schritteif while employed by this uber-steuerung.

In this blog, I plan to spill my guts about my art, my family and anything else. This is one of the few times that I have been unemployed in my lifetime. I was unemployed right before and right after Erin was born. I was unemployed for a year to spend time with my son. Now, I am unemployed again - or can I say - self employed.

I should empower myself as an artist now. I am an artist. I am self employed. My art is no longer a hobby. My art is my love and my career - at least until I go nuts and have to work outside the home, which then, my job will be my hobby ;-)