Thursday, October 31, 2013

My love affair with Paris

For years I have wanted to go to Paris.  That hasn’t happened yet but I hope to visit France next year.  I have always loved all things French, in particular French country design.  French Country design, inspired by the beautiful homes of Provence, incorporates distressed woodwork, wrought iron, and soft colors.  The style marries rustic country with old world charm and is comfortable and charming.

The popularity of French Country design can be seen everywhere on the web.  I thought I would share some of my finds with you.
Here is one of my latest designs:

Check out this beautiful fashion illustration done by Zoica:
I just love this beautiful bedroom!
Can you believe this is a manhole cover?  Reminds me of a rose window! 
Don’t you just love this stunning French window?
I just love this photography by Rebecca Plotnick from Robecca Plotnick Photography.


Here is a beautiful example of French architecture taken by Nicole of the Paris PrintShop.

 Here is an interesting building: 

And last but not least – This story would not be complete without the Eiffel Tower.  It’s hard to believe that when it was built, the people of Paris were not happy.  It was only meant to be temporary but Parisians fell in love with it and well, the rest is history as they say.

Well that's it for now. Until next time…
Thanks for stopping by.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Artist Showcase - Sheena from Koolnecks Accessories

Welcome to our third edition of Artist Spotlight - The newest feature to our blog!  Here we will highlight fellow Etsy artists and give them an opportunity to share how they got their start, their successes, and the challenges that they face.  If you would like to be considered for this column or if you would like to recommend someone, please let either myself or Zoica know via Etsy convo. 
This week we are featuring Sheena from Koolnecks Accessories.

Here is one of sheena’s beautiful jewelry pieces:

Tell us a little about yourself and your creative business
I am from the sunny island of Barbados, and that has been the inspiration for my jewelry. I am a huge animal lover. My husband and I have one cutie pie longhair dachshund and a desert box turtle. I enjoy creating beautiful things.. hence my art - handmade jewelry. All of my pieces are one of a kind and made with quality materials, simple, elegant and unique. My business is a "one girl" show, I am the creator, designer, artisan, curator and owner of Koolnecks Accessories!  My inspiration comes from my island background – the beautiful colors and smells, sounds of being surrounded by crystal blue waters. I love working with natural stones and shells, wires for wire wrapping. Various textures and colors are all inspiration for my handmade pieces.
How did you get your start?
I got started as a hobby I was learning from a friend of mine. My business grew from a simple "girls' hangout time". I fell in tove with making jewelry, realizing that I can design and craft something that no one else has, got me thinking "hmm, this would be a great business!" I believe that if you do what you love, it will show in your work!
What has been your biggest successful moment so far?
My first sale was my biggest successful moment... I remember the first time I got a sale on etsy I yelled so loud and leaped up...... my husband thought I was crazy! Also along the same lines - my first sale at the store I have my jewelry selling as well, located on the scenic Eastern Shore of VA - Tangled Salon and Spa

What challenges do you face selling online?
I am constantly working on improving my online presence.   I have revamped my store, improving my pics to make sure they are clear, bright, and show off the beauty of each piece. I also realize that in a crowded market a challenge is meant to be overcome. That is what I am determined to do! A challenge is not a bad thing because it teaches you where to improve it makes you better, it makes your art better, and your product better!

What advice would you give someone just starting out on Etsy?
If you are just starting out on Etsy - DO NOT GIVE UP! Take/ask for all the advice you can. Participate in etsy's awesome community. Always look for ways and avenues to improve. Enjoy what you do and sales will come!

Thank you Sheena for sharing your shop and your background with us!
Well that about does it for this edition of our Artist Spotlight.  Don't forget you can recommend yourself or a friend for our next issue.  Just convo me or Zoica.  We'll let you know if you were chosen.

Thanks for stopping by.

Until next time...

Sunday, October 27, 2013

How to make Holiday coasters

Textiles always inspire me and today I am going to share with you another coasters project. This time they are made out of felt! I was planning to make felt flowers to adorn a T-shirt and they did not come all right, so I gave up. Looking through a “Bon Appetit” magazine I saw the well-recognized Holiday cookie in a form of a star and red filling inside.. Yummy. So don’t be too critical, since these are my first try… You can select any felt color combinations you wish, but his is what I had. I stopped after I made two coasters and I think you should make at least four and have a set. You would need to make a pattern for the coaster's star shape, and the inside shape.

On the top layer, cut the outline star pattern and the star inside.

Cut only the outline of the coaster for the bottom layer.

Stitch the outside edge first to secure the layers in place and then the inside one. They would look great with a hand stitch like a backstitch, but I did not have time and I used a machine zig-zag instead.

Have fun! A set of coasters would make great gifts too!
Let me know what you think.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Friday Finds - The Pumpkin Patch

Welcome to another edition of Friday finds.  This week's theme is The Pumpkin Patch.

Our first featured treasury is called Pumpkin Patch Chic and was curated by Beatriz McDavid from AlegriaCollection.  Here is one of Beatriz’s beautiful items:

Silk Scarf Oscar de la Renta Paisley Scarf by AlegriaCollection

'The Pumpkin Patch' by beatrizmcdavid

Simply the Best! Join Us

 Our second featured treasury comes to us from Laura at PlanetDigs2.  Here is one of Laura’s beautiful jewelry items:

BOHO Bracelet of Lime Jade by PlanetDigs2



We hope you have enjoyed this edition of Friday Finds.  Next week's theme will be "Sing a Song."   If you have a treasury you would like to submit, just send me or Zoica a link via Etsy convo by Thursday afternoon and we will take a look. Remember if your treasury is featured, we will feature an item from your shop.
Thanks for stopping by.

Until next time…