Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Ok so maybe you DO have to hit me in the head!

You know that thing where you get a new car and suddenly every firth car on the road is the same make and model as your?  Of course all of those cars were there the day before but you are just SEEING them for the first time.

In the past 24 hours I received the same message from my Growing Your Soul Group,  Seth Godin, Jennifer Boykin, Regina and Facebook & Pinterest posts. I felt like I am being hit in the head with a baseball bat with the message to just GO.

In the past few days I also had a pipe burst at the shop, our wet-vac caught on fire, the color is off so I can't print a commission work that is due uh, NOW, I ran over a pin with a sewing machine and it killed it, oh AND I woke up this morning and my 2 week out of warranty laptop (read still darn new as far as I am concerned) just didn't. turn on.

So advice all of my real and virtual pals has me resolved. Even if it is not perfect or pretty. So here you are.

I am starting,
yet again.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Embracing Change

I had the audacity to run away this weekend. With the family, to one of my oldest and dearest friend's house. Ok that probably doesn't seem audacious to you but we haven't gone on a trip for the sheer pleasure of it for a long time. 

 I had to beg for shop coverage and pay my lovely staff for bleary winter days in January when most folks are more excited about the Super Bowl that they are about gift shopping.  So it was a big deal.  More about our lovely time later but I just sat down and steeled myself to really LOOK at my email and one of the first things in my inbox was the article below.

It's like it was reading my mind.  Question begs- what is next?  Still thinking. Stay tuned.

Embrace Change in Order To Make A Difference

by Clint Watson

When I first started BoldBrush (the company behind FASO), things were pretty simple. I was the leader, the boss, and all the employees. [...] 

Read the rest of this article at:

This excerpt appears courtesy of FineArtViews Art Marketing Newsletter by FASO,
a free email newsletter about art, marketing, inspiration and fine living for artists,
collectors and galleries (and anyone else who loves art).

For a complimentary subscription, visit: http://www.faso.com/art-marketing-newsletter

Miss you already!

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Mending in Camel & Black

After spending DAYS over New Year's clearing up and out by office and studio spaces my mission for 2015 is to simply start.  Take one piece, project, inspiration piece what have you and work on it until it is done.  In the past I have worked in assembly line fashion, paint 20 backgrounds, cut out 20 pillows, embroider 20 things and what it has left me with is LOTS of half finished things and no inventory to sell or art to present when an exhibition opportunity arises.  I was crushed and flummoxed when I was invited to do a show at the end of last year and I literally had nothing new to present,  Ugh.

 Am determined to leap between art, craft, writing and business development and simply do.  In this case replace a velvet waist band that had dryrotted on a lovely wool felt circle skirt from the 50's.
 A simple matter of cutting off the old waistband, measuring a slice of black velvet (donated to me by buddy Nire Nah when she made the command decision to quit pretending SHE was going to do something with this lovely black velvet (!) drape!).
 Pinning the waist band on- while wondering WHY I picked a project that when finished will fit on a person with a 25 inch waist.  Who IS this woman and do I even want to know her?
 After recognizing I really didn't have a beef against folks with slim waists although I have never had one even when I weighed 50 pounds less I pinned
 and seamed and clipped threads...

 and hand hemmed the edge under to make a pretty facing.
 Ta Da! The Finished project- ready for sale. $90 at Stifel & Capra
 Loving all of the details with the appliques and the cording.  Quite the fancy home sewn project by some svelte lady way back when! Imagine how tiny that 25 inch waist would look with crinolines?
 Next up? Cute wool sweater with moth holes...
 snazzed up with some crocheted appliques!
Pardon the boots- my computer is fighting me & I didn't want to torture myself trying to find the edited version of this shot!!!! Super cute I think, What say you?

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Nothing says "Happy New Year" like fresh paint.

January first. New Year's day. Stereotypically a time of new beginnings.  We woke up after a fairly sedate New Year's eve of Family Movie Night with the teenagers (Guardians of the Galaxy) and faced the fact that one of my favorite people and long time vendor and tenant has given notice so she can concentrate more on shows and less on day to day retail. So faced with an empty room ( and ghosts of fabulous sewing and lovely jewelry) I picked
 not surprisingly the color of spring seas to cover the walls. Theory being we are turning the space into a self contained Gourmet Market to showcase our food & wine artisans and the bulk of their packaging is black white and red. What better color to make those shine than S&C Aqua?
 Started at 9:45. By 2pm with the help of Charming Husband and Reluctant Except I am Paying Him Son the "new" Gourmet Shop was taking place. I am actually VERY impressed with how much we got done.
 Also impressed with myself I didn't make the family do the Do It Now Death March to do ALL of the moves I am visualizing for the shop right NOW instead of rolling it out over the next couple of months...
Reworking the coffee station (pot is too crazy big) so one can buy a cup of coffee in Falls Church that is roasted by a local guy and not by a big chain. More soon.

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Think about your life - Pippin


Ok so, that is the END of the play, not the beginning but with one in high school and one in college it was the chorus that stuck in my head when I dragged um, chose my family to accompany me to the revival of "Pippin" as my (rather) big Christmas gift this year. They really are in their glory days, after all.  When they are not ebing tortured by teenaged angst of course!

Amusingly a whole lot of folks on Facebook reminded me that our High school drama department did "Pippin" while I was there.  Frighteningly I did not actually remember this (although I remember all my friends in "The Sound of Music" ) so I guess that is why I know ALL the words to ALL the songs over thirty years later!

waiting for the curtain to go up at the National

Seeing the amazingly cast and staged show did provoke a lot of dialogue after the play about heros and anti-heros and how in real life sometimes the heroic thing is just showing up everyday. And how in real life death is not reversible, although miracles happenand people live and death is never the end. And how eating right and regular work-outs might get you on The Right Track (another Pippin song) to having arms like 63 year old Lucie Arnaz!
Lucie Arnaz as Berthe aka Granny in "Pippin"

My muse for the 2015. Lucie sang, dance, swung from a circus ring and looked fabulous the entire time!

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Best. Christmas. Present. Ever.

my snappy home mantel for 2014
My favorite Stifel cousin Terry M was blindsided by a terrible headache and was looking for relief from her symptoms.  She decided to query her Facebook friends where upon reviewing her symptoms her friends informed her that her pain didn't sound like a migraine and suggested she go to the hospital.  Long story short, Terry was successfully operated on for a brain aneurysm and after 7 days, miracle of miracles, was released Christmas Eve. The normal CCU stay is 10 to 14 days after a surgery like this.

Scenic Connecticut snow traveling to Stifel family reunion
She is weak in body but strong in spirit and buoyant in gratitude for still being on the earth.
Best Christmas present ever.  Peace, health and happiness are my wish for you- today and always.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Book and Art Supply Give Away! - Lesley Riley's TAP

 Toot my own horn time!One of my favorite TAP (Transfer Artist Paper) projects got featured in Lesley Riley's new book.  Creative Image Transfer features a wide range of projects sure to spark your imagination on how to use this versatile product.
For those that aren't familiar with TAP it is a polmer sheet that can be printed,  drawn or painted on and then transferred to almost any surface.  From metal to fabric to chalk & clay paint, it makes a lovely transparent layer to add to your art work.

"Fiona" here ( and instructions on how to make her ) was featured in the book and (I say proudly!) on the intro page too! I blew up an old 60's newspaper fashion ad and used TAP to make a pixelated transfer of the outline of Fiona. On "Copper Fantasy"  I transferred and vintage image of a bird onto copper.  I love how you can see the glow of the metal coming through!

To celebrate the book launch Lesley is giving away copies of the book AND packages of TAP.  The Giveaway dates are  August 6-10. To find out more check out Lesley's blog.YOu can sneak over there right NOW   http://www.LesleyRiley.com/weblog And let me know if you win!