Friday, March 31, 2006

Studio Friday- Comfort (and Corners of My Home)

This week's Studio Friday theme is Comfort. And I'm also cheating and using the same photos for my "Corners of My Home" submission (one day late) since it's in a corner!

This is a corner in my studio that holds a mannequin figure I made my husband for his birthday a few years ago. As you can see, there is an arched inset that holds a raven. The arched shape itself is a very comfortable shape for me- I find it enclosing and protective and safe. There're also two printer's blocks- "J" and "C"- our initials. Around the arch, it says, "He always calms her rising emotions". This is where the real "comfort" comes in. This statement is very true of us. I tend to be a worrier and easily distressed. Jason is my rock- he calms me down and gives me more confidence to be able to do the things I'm scared to do. He's a great comfort to me.

At one time, the mannequin had copper wings and a finial on the top, but those broke off during our recent move, and I haven't reattached them yet- but I may wait, because she wouldn't fit in this little corner if she had all her extremities reattached, and I kind of like having her there!

Thursday, March 30, 2006

Whew!

Well, all the art is packaged up and on its way to Florida, which is where the craft fair is being held. All in all, I made 28 pixie sticks, 26 frames, and 9 stuffed lambs. If I sell it all (crossing my fingers), I'll earn about $1300. It was a LOT of work- I sure hope it was worth it! The whole opportunity was presented to me sort of last minute, which is why I was in such a rush to get things done.

Although it was tons of work, it actually was kind of nice to feel like I had something I was working for. Being a stay-at-home mom makes me feel somewhat "useless" in a lot of ways, if that makes sense. I'm not supporting the family, and I don't want to just be wasting my time at home. For the past week, I felt like I had a "purpose"! Don't get me wrong though, I'm glad I'm done and I'm going to enjoy the breather now that I've done all I can do for this particular event. And I'm going to be able to actually do some real artwork again! I've missed doing collage the past couple weeks, and am anxious to get back in the studio and have some fun.

Tomorrow night, I'm going to try to drive up to Pt. Townsend and go to Vendor Night at Artfest. That should get me inspired, and maybe I'll find some fun new materials, too!

So here're photos of all the pieces I made for the show. Once it's over and I receive back the pieces that didn't sell, I'll list them in case anyone is interested.





























Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Busy, Busy, Busy!!!

Well, I've been terribly busy trying to get ready for this craft fair, thus no posts recently! And it's not over yet! I need to ship everything (the fair's actually in Florida and my sister's going to man the booth) on Thursday, so I'm gonna keep working right until then. Here is the state of our spare bedroom/my studio right now, complete with baby toys to keep Riley busy while I work. He does okay for short periods of time, but I really get the most done while he's napping.

I'll try to post photos of finished products before I ship them out, if I've got time! That's all for now- back to work!

Friday, March 24, 2006

My First Studio Friday!

I've decided to start participating in "Studio Friday"! I always enjoy seeing into other artists' studios, so thought I've give it a try. This week's theme is "Secret Stash". Nothing came to mind at first for this theme. Do I go from the angle of finding supplies that are a secret from my husband? I certainly have plenty of materials that Jason would probably be appalled that I purchased, or at least be appalled at how much was spent on them! Or do I go from the angle of finding coveted items that I can't ever bring myself to actually use, even though I just HAD to have them? I have an abundance of those for sure!

So I took a look around the studio, trying to find the perfect entry for this week's theme. I looked through files, scanned my desk, and opened drawers that haven't been opened for a while. And there, in one of these forgotten drawers, was the ideal "secret stash"! It's a drawer full of vintage trims, laces, and tatting- an EBay auction I won after last year's Artfest. I had taken a class from
Janet Cooper, and wanted to try incorporating some of her style into my own work. She uses all sorts of vintage fabrics and trims in her "quilts"/wall hangings. Oh, how I love her work! Here are the pieces of art I did in the class, by the way...

So anyway, I won this auction and promptly forgot about it because we were in the midst of moving a month later. And there these things have sit, hidden in a drawer, waiting for me to discover them again! There are all kinds of fun things in there that I now see I can use! And so I guess the angle I ended up taking with this week's theme was a "secret stash" that was secret to everyone, even me!

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Fun Mail Day!

Today I received a fun package from Linda! She sent me an envelope full of trash! Teehee- not really! She sent me a whole load of fabric scraps from her quilting stash- stuff that was destined for the trash, but that she knew some crazy artist would be interested in! And crazy artist that I am, I loved it and actually went as far as to organize it into separate piles! Here's a photo of my favorites. As I told Linda, the fact that many of the pieces are strips is perfect, since I specifically use strips for a lot of my projects! Thank you, Linda!!

And here is this week's corner. Not terribly exciting, but I like it. It's a shelf that hangs above the bed in our guest bedroom. In this particular photo is a piece of art that I did and one of my favorite little nudes. It's a gorgeous verdigris green. As always, ignore the white walls- they'll be painted at some point! You can see more of this room on my PictureTrail site if you're interested.

I made some more progress on my inventory for the craft fair today. Finished the majority of the sewing needed for the Pixie Sticks- next comes stuffing and inserting the sticks. Boy, once these are done, I think I'll be done with them for a while! I am just not a "production-line" kind of girl. I get bored with things quickly, so making the same thing over and over and over can be draining! But hey, if I can make some money at this fair, I guess it will be worth it!

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Progress!

As I said yesterday, I've got to produce as much inventory as possible for a quickly upcoming craft fair. So here's what I accomplished today. I cut all felt/fabric pieces for three more sets of Pixie Sticks. Tomorrow, I hope to sew them all together. I also bought a TON of scrapbook papers to use on the frames I'll be making. There are so many gorgeous papers out there! As much as I'd love to use all vintage papers, I just don't have enough, and even if I did, I'd probably want to save them all for myself instead of selling them!!

I've gotten lots of interest for the photoframes from yesterday's post! For all those who are interested in purchasing one, here's what I'll do. Let me bang out as many as I can for this art fair. I'll post photos of what I make. Anything that doesn't sell, I'll post again, and if the one you liked isn't there, let me know and I can make a duplicate. I'll do the same for the Pixie Sticks. I'm not sure yet what I'm going to be selling everything for. I'm thinking $30-$35 for the frames, but I'll have to kind of go through the materials used, etc. and make sure that still sounds right. What do you all think? How much should I charge? And here's another question. What sizes are good? The ones I made previously were for 4x6 photos, but I was thinking of also doing some for 3x3 photos (obviously a photo would need to be trimmed to that size). I used to manage a custom frame shop, and square formats seem to be popular.

Okay, that's all- Jason just got home and Riley's taking a nap, so maybe I'll try to go get a jumpstart on the sewing!

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

OK, Change of Plans!

I know I said yesterday that I'm going to put some of the "Pixie Sticks" up on Etsy, but I just found out that I've got the opportunity to put up a booth at a small craft fair on April 7th. So I'll be trying to sell the ones I've got, and then I've got to work, work, work for the next couple weeks to get a bunch more inventory!

I think I'll make more of the pixies, and also a bunch of handmade frames like these. Lighting and color quality on the photos is poor, unfortunately... I tried these on Ebay a while ago, but they didn't sell- I think they'll sell better where someone can actually walk away with one. We'll see how it goes-it would be nice to make some money!

Quick Note....

No time to post for a couple days, but everyone was so encouraging about selling the "Pixie Sticks" that I think I'll give it a shot. I'll post when I've figured out Etsy and once they're up for sale!

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Pixie Sticks

Well, I spent some time this weekend making these stick puppets, which I've decided to call "Pixie Sticks". I was inspired by Blair's post about some finger puppets she'd made-so cute! These were so fun to make, and a perfect way to use some of the fabrics I've been buying up! I'm debating whether I should make more and try to sell them, maybe on Etsy. Like I said, they're pretty fun to make, but I don't know whether I could sell them for enough to make up the time spent to make them. I think I'd need to sell them for about $20 in order for it to be worth it. Any feedback from any of you?

In case you haven't noticed from reading my blog, I'm trying to come up with a way of making a little bit of extra money from home, with some sort of art or craft. So far, I haven't had much luck. It's really difficult for me to sell my collage artwork (because it's so personal), and even when I've tried, I haven't had the greatest luck. So I'm trying to come up with something I can make that I'm not so emotionally tied to. We'll see what I eventually come up with!

On other notes, it was a beautiful day in Seattle today, so Jason and I took Riley to the nearby dog park for a nice walk- what a great way to spend a Sunday afternoon! We are having a fence built this month, and plan to get a puppy soon, so it was also a great place to do some research!
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