Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Grey Gardens

I watched Grey Gardens (the original, not the recent TV movie) for the first time yesterday. I knew before I watched it that this documentary, or I guess I should say the legendary Beales, had sort of a cult following. Well, now I understand why. I found the documentary to be amazing, oddly beautiful, and sad at the same time. No matter how crazy Big and Little Edie were, they seemed like honest and somewhat down to earth people. I kind of fell in love with their quirky, uninhibited nature. I also found Edie's style and curious obsession so thrilling that I put together a Little Edie(Etsy) Inspired collage. Red & Blue Nautical Scarf from Stephanie Geisler, Vintage Silver Hand Mirror from Little Byrd Vintage, Antique Radio from Pearls Vintage, Jeweled Art Deco Brooch from Eye Candy Antiques, Vintage Black Bathing Suit from Rogue Retro, and Antique Binoculars from Sadie Olive.

And coincidentally, I found out that Little Edie's nephew is publishing her childhood diary yesterday after watching the film. The book is titled, "I only mark the hours that shine" and will be available in August. Not sure how I feel about her remaining family capitalizing on her, but I am tempted to learn more about this woman's past and how she came to be so unique.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

~New Cards~

Well, I am on a roll with these embroidered greeting cards lately. It seems to be the only thing I feel like stitching! Here are a few of my new designs that are now available in the shop.

I have also been toying around with the idea of scanning my cards and then reprinting the image onto cardstock so I can offer my cards in a set of 4/5 at a more affordable price. I thought this idea might work after coming across Jayme McGowan's 3-D illustrations from Roadside. She photographs her original 3-D work which then allows her to sell her pieces at a more affordable price and they retain their 3-D quality!

(The Trapeze Twins by Roadside)

What do you think? Should I give it a try? Do you think people would be interested in saving a few bucks and would buy a reproduced image vs. the real stitched deal? I'm thinking it might work. Now I just need to find a good printer. Suggestions?

Monday, June 21, 2010


A couple of weeks ago, I came across Claire Coles amazing work and was so inspired by her use of wallpaper that I decided to go hunting for my own wallpaper. I think I got a little carried away because not only did I walk away with a bag FULL of single sheets of paper but a giant sample book as well.

I couldn't help it! This book was full of so many gorgeous prints that I just had to take the whole thing home with me. Plus I love the fact that it was called "Tanglewood."

(The giant sample book that is now all mine!!)

So now I am fully stocked on wallpaper! Now I just need to decide what to do with it. I was going to try and collage some brooches together or applique the paper onto some greeting cards but those two ideas haven't work out so well. I'm thinking handmade journals might be easier and just as pretty! Hopefully it works out!

What would you do with a stack of purty sheets of wallpaper?

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Today I'm wishing . . . .

That I wasn't sick!

While I try to conquer this cold I thought I would share with you these cards that my friend Jess makes (including the one above which captures exactly how I feel right now).

I had no clue she crafted these little paper wonders until she gave me a thank you card one day (seen below). All of her cards are really quite delightful. Simply designed with the funnest little messages ever. You can see more of Jess's cards in her SHOP which is called, Junebug in July, and you can view some of her lovely photography and read about all sorts of other fun little things on her blog, HERE. Enjoy!

Thank you card Jess gave me. I love this special edition card that she originally made as a good bye card for her Portland friends. Pretty awesome, huh?

Monday, June 14, 2010

SF Etsy Trunk Show

I spent this last Saturday at the Artist Xchange Gallery in SF vending at the SF Etsy Sampler Trunk show. This event was organized by our fabulous local SF Etsy team, and it turned out great!

All the vendors from the show were active members of the SF Etsy team and it was a real delight to meet some of them. Participating in events like this is really my favorite part of being a lady with a crafty business. I love seeing what other people are making, chatting with them about business, getting feedback! So a BIG KUDOS to Kendra Renee for organizing the event and Jen Johnson, who is the most awesome team leader eva'! Photos below!

The day started off kind of rough. I don't own a car but I do participate in a carshare program which allows me to check out cars. Except that morning the car battery was dead in the car I checked out, and the traffic to SF was horrible. But I made it despite the delays! I shared a table with Eve and Rick from Monkey & Seal. They were awesome table buddies! On the other side of me was Alana from Etta & Billie with her oh-so-wonderfully fragrant soaps and lotion. It smelt great all day! I have a thing for mustaches and was delighted to find these mustache panties by
Christiana of Mahoohoo. Super Cute! I'm always delighted when I run into Nina from Gooseberry Press at events. Her city prints are great. I just about wanted to buy everything from Katherine J Lee, including that
adorable red striped clutch!

I'm loving how Heather from Heathered took these old vintage ads and made them into little card holders.

These photos only reveal a portion of all the amazing goodies available that day. To see more, go HERE.

Friday, June 11, 2010


I am so thrilled to be apart of SF Etsy Street Team's first trunk show! The SF Etsy Sampler will be taking place tomorrow in SF at the Artist XChange gallery. There are 20 amazing SF/East Bay Etsy sellers participating in the event and I'm really excited to be meeting them.

You can check out who will be selling tomorrow over at the SF Etsy Blog. But here is a little sampler of some of the goodies you might see tomorrow.

Kendra Renee is the brainchild behind this event and she also happens to make some of the most amazing sterling silver jewelry you have ever seen!Need to stock up on some bath&body supplies? Well, lucky for you Etta & Billie will be there selling the handmade soaps!Show some love for your favorite city by picking up one of GooseberryPrints city inspired greeting cards or prints. Summer is here which means it is the perfect time to decorate your hair with some purty flowers. I love the color combo and little yellow french knots on this flower hair clip by Dorothy Designs.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

My Reading Wish List

Today my co-worker gave me the heads up about a new embroidery book that will be coming out this August by the woman behind the amazing blog, Posies Get Cozy. This lady has such a charmed life! I dream of the day where I can stitch and create all day, while working on my newest publication, and in a lovely Portland home, none the less!

Alicia Paulson's new book titled Embroidery Companion: Classic Designs for a Modern Home sounds like it will have a wonderful variety of new designs. I get the impression that it will have a nice combination of updated classic embroidery designs that one would find in folk art inspired needlework. I'm imagining lots of floral designs that you could stitch onto just about anything! Want to know more? Read about the upcoming book HERE. You can also pre-order it from the same page.

Another book you may want to check out is Redwork from the Workbasket. I found this book while browsing the shelves at Powell's bookstore in Portland. It really is quite phenomenal. The price was a little steep so I decided to wait on purchasing it, but I can't wait to add it to my collection.

The book includes a few wonderful embroidery projects for you to try as well as a cd with JPeg images of some of the featured designs. All the designs come from a craft magazine started in 1935, called Workbasket. You can browse a few pages of the book on Amazon for free. My favorite design is the horse head which you can view on Page 7 with Amazon's "Look Inside!" feature.

Now if only I had some free time to actually stitch up some of these designs for myself.
Sigh . . . . .

Monday, June 7, 2010

I'm recuperating from my first summer craft fair today. Face and legs are burnt. Tired as hell. But like usual, it was all worth it. I came across this funny video of the Bad Romance song put to a Newsies clip. Made my day. Enjoy!

Thursday, June 3, 2010


Summer is upon us which means that it is time for lots of fun crafty outdoor events! I currently have two on my schedule for this month and it is sure keeping me busy.

For some reason I have such a hard time deciding what to make/stock up on for an event. I'm always thinking, "Should I make more of this? Will people buy this item?" I'm definitely a little behind in making new stock for my event this weekend, but alas that's what happens when you are juggling a full time job and creative business.

If you are in the neighborhood for either events, be sure to stop by and say hi!

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Today I'm in love with . . . .

Claire Coles! This amazing British textile artist has really stolen my heart. I find her work to not only be unique but quite inspiring. Claire received a degree in Applied Arts from Middlesex University and is mostly recognized for her unique stitched vintage wallpaper designs. But what caught my eye initially were her embroidered tea cups that I found via the website I dreamed I saw. And they are actual embroidered cups!

I then ventured onto her website where I discovered more amazing work. I realized then that I just had to share her makings with you. Be sure to take a few minutes to peruse her website, found HERE. You won't regret it. Here are a few of my favorite pieces by her.

I love these wallpaper textile collage tableaux. The inclusion of lighting was pure genius. It really brings the objects and wallpaper to life.

Here are the teacups which are actually embroidered. She also has ceramic teacups that have been imprinted with what appears to be lace and textured wallpaper. I can't decide which ones I like more. She also has bird and flower wallpaper brooches.
Loving the flowers. This wallpaper collage of an airplane really won me over too. I have been thinking about possibly doing an embroidered wedding invitation that I could digitally scan and sell. I doubt they would be as glorious as this one that Claire did.
Simply Stunning. **All images from Claire Coles Design. Artist discovered via I dreamed I saw blog.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Who doesn't love a cute doggie or kitty?

A couple weeks ago I mentioned how the Berkeley Humane Society burnt down in a fire. I was inspired to make these doggie and kittie embroidery designs as a way to raise some money for them. I was initially going to make some simple little fabric brooches, but found myself suddenly creating key chains. The keychains came out pretty good. I'm still trying to perfect circular fabric key chain part.

I can't decide whether to make it an enclosed plushie with no edges or a more circular plushie with a pinking shear fringe trim. No matter how hard I try I can't seem to get the circular shape to stay even or consistent when making an enclosed plushie. I still think they turned out pretty cute- even if they are a little crooked. :)

I decided to try the exposed edges with the fringe trim because it is easier to sew the plushie shut after stuffing it. What do you think? Should I try to come up with a new pattern shape and make an enclosed plushie or should I stick with the shabby chic fringe look? Or should I stick with my Crooked Sister motto and just make cute little crooked key chain plushies?