Thursday, June 30, 2011

I have new listings in my shops
Art from my Heart Shop
A new Sea life pendant,
The whole piece has been antiqued or washed with brown acrylic paint to give a feel of antiquity to it.

The Crab, seahorse, barnacles, and star fish are washed with gold. The zipper has been highlighted with silver acrylic.

There are two stars, one on each side of the top of the zipper holding it in place.

There are words stamped in the background on the heart.

And from the Hoarders Closet- 2 new cutter sets
7 small 3/4”, 5/8”, 1/2”, 7/16”, 3/8”, 5/16” and 3/16” teardrop cutters
5 round cutters in 1 1/2”, 1 1/4”, 1”, 3/4”, and 1/2” sizes.

Thanks so much for looking. I appreciate you!
Have a great day!!


Boo is up too!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Wednesday Wonder- Sticks and Stones can break your bones but this art will only bring beauty

One of the ladies at the retreat collects stones and sticks from all over the world. I am so inspired by her art.
She has little twigs that are beautiful and she is very selective.
Thank you Nina for your heart-felt and spoken inspiration.
I loved the concept and have always been attracted to unusual stones of any kind. I collect them wherever I go. Even on this trip too.
In my search for sticks and stone art this morning up popped Andy Goldsworthy who is making stone art on the island of  Alderney.
There is a great article from Kevin Rushby about Andy Goldsworthy and Antony Gormley in the act of transforming the open spaces of the Alderney and Helm in an art project to draw the Channels Islands together.

I love Andy's giant earth balls.

This photo is credited to Chris George and from the same article

What he has found is plenty of human and natural debris to bury within the earth globes, "the stones" as he calls them. And these things will gradually be revealed as the "stones" are eroded.

Quoted from Rushby's article in the travel section

This is a photo from the author Kevin Rushby from a piece by Antony Gormley.
It is so funny, on the way home from the retreat I played trivia on the plane and the island of Alderney was one of the answers. ;-O

Here are some wonderful sticks that have been made in to hair sticks.
Artists Stacey and Kimi create wonders of wood and antler in sticks for the hair. They function as art and utility and are meant to be seen.

Carlos Moseley makes some art that rocks.
Carlos can focus on the artistic inspirations formed from the art studio…. surrounded by rocks, stones and pebbles that are waiting to be discovered. These popular rock art creations are displayed in galleries and shown throughout Texas and various other states. From Carlos' website

Visit his art gallery here
He has Shadow boxes here

Here is a great article from Art on the wall about sticks and stones, twigs and leaves installations

Here are some great projects at  AHC-Artists helping Children, OMG, I love this site!
I see stuff there I can play with too!!
Scroll down past the commercials.
How about a walnut instrument

Or how to build a twig bird house


If you have time, take a trip over to
David N. Stehly makes some gorgeous walking art sticks,

Here is a place where Stone Art rocks the world.

Kok Hooi's painted rocks make a statement.

Remember doing this??
Maybe it is time to start again. ;-D

WOW, this
has been a good Wednesday Wonder day, sorry for the delay, but I am still getting back in to the swing of things.
This one was fun, I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!
I also learned that sticks and stones are a very traditional medium in human history, more so than paints and brushes.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

A wonderful site- Orkney Springs

Shrinemont in Orkney Springs Virgina is a beautiful place with natural springs, beautiful fields, skiing nearby(in the season), many houses with wonderful porches surrounding them, basket ball, pools, wonderful kids, good hearty food (locally grown and well made), and places to have conferences and meetings.

There are firefly's, they amaze me and we don't have them here so they are somewhat of a mystery to me. I love to watch them light up the trees like a Christmas night in the middle of a June evening with frogs croaking, a small glass of wine, a rocking chair and a porch to relax on. It was a magical moment for me, but that happened more than once on this trip.

I can imagine having a family reunion there. Everyone could stay in one house, they are so big and be with each other and yet have some place to retreat to if they wish.

I guess what I went to is a family of sorts, a family of women with a common interest, their interest in creating.

The trees were green and gorgeous.
The thing though that held my interest and that has drawn many a person to this beautiful mountain glen in the Virginia area are the springs.

This is one of those springs, This is the pathway leading up to the spring that has been lined with rock and has a fountain of water coming from it.
If you look closely it seems that a person is standing in the forest. The large rock on top being the head.
Arms spread wide and water dripping down the legs.
The water is almost red in color and the rocks are stained with the iron in them.

It flows at this time of year ice-cold from the mountains. The water is refreshing and tastes of iron.
The blood of the earth.

It is hard to stay away from the fountain, at least for me it was.
The waters are rumored to be healing and I washed my hands in them often.
I love my hands, not because they are beautiful but because they are my tools, the only ones I really need besides my heart and my mind.
The surrounding area is lovely too. The water trickles down in to another glen.
I can imagine Indians staying here and in one of the little store down the road they were selling Indian artifacts that were probably found around there.
Hammers, arrowheads, and skin scrapers.
Walking through the hills I even found some old pottery. One of the ladies incorporated it in to one of her creations while we were there. How cool is that?
I brought the rest back as souvenirs.
All in all a beautiful retreat and resting place in the north American continent.
It is open from April till November if you are in that neck of the woods.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Happy Monday- I am back, tired and rested ;-O.

I had a wonderful creative time with the women I spent the week with.
We painted, shared, ate, walked, ate, drank a little, took pictures, created, got stimulated, found my muse, found the vortex, charged my soul, had an absolutely wonderful time, and even slept rather well.
Nature abounded, the phone rarely worked, the light was incredible, and it was more humid than I am used to.
Susan and John were so gracious, I stayed with them for a while and got home cooked meals, my own room, and some time to relax with out demands.
I got home late last night and Madi was still up, Oh my goodness how I missed that baby and her little arms wrapped around my neck felt so right, so perfectly perfect.
Now at home the light is brighter, my heart a little lighter, the birds sign a little louder and the washing machine sounds so good.
My bed snuggled me closely and rocked me gently to sleep, oh how I love my bed.
I am so lucky and so grateful for this fulfilling life I have of being all that I am and the wonderful people who I am blessed enough to call family and friends.
How can it get any better than this?
This is how...
I got to an email from a fellow friend and etsy artist saying she had featured me in her blog.
Sandy Prenzi featured my Woodland creature in her awesome blog along with a couple of other talented Etsy original artists, Mojtaba Jalali's ~ Parsiart and E. Meggie McCarty ~ Dollfun Studio. I am so very honored to be included with these two very talented artists.
Thank you Sandy, you are the best.
Make sure you visit Sandy's site on etsy, she makes some incredible polymer clay things too.
Head on over to Sandy's Etsy site and show her some Etsy love.

Sandy's really lovely Ring Bearer pillow! 

Friday, June 24, 2011

A new unzipped heart- the king and I

OK it is Friday, I am still away.
I do though have another favor to ask.
Be kind to someone you normally wouldn't give the time of day today.
You will know who it is.
Bring yourself to full attention and be there for that person.
Present with all of your senses in their presence.
Take a moment to be there all the way.
Forget what is going on for you just for a bit, second, moment, minute, or ten minutes.
Your gift to them.
You are an important part of this world.
Thank you.

Now this is the King Unzipped heart.

He is wise and kind.
He rules with grace.
He is loving and caring.

Unzipped Heart- The King and I

Thursday, June 23, 2011

A new unzipped heart- It is good to bee queen

Happy Thursday!
Today, for me, be good to yourself!

Take time for you.
Do not talk negative to yourself.
Take a bubble bath.
Hug yourself.

A new unzipped heart, the one is to remind you that you are a queen, to take care of yourself, and to love yourself.

Bee the queen that you are!

Unzipped Heart It is good to be queen!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Wednesday Wonder- I have bone to pick with my little stick

Oh my.. this just keeps getting better and better. I sit down to write and think *Wednesday wonder* and an image pops in to my head.
This time it was Popsicle sticks. My daughter, when she was younger made me some candle glass holders completely out of Popsicle sticks. I love these things, they are colorful, beautiful and simple in design.  Hard to clean if you live in a dusty place (which I do), but the look is marvelous and complicated. She made them out of colored craft sticks which are Popsicle sticks really.

Then I ran a search, and there before my eyes popped up all of these links to sticks- tooth picks, Popsicle sticks, matchsticks, and tongue depressors, I have hit the little wooden stick mother lode.

The first one to come up was,

David Hrobowski makes furniture out of popsicle sticks — thousands of them, glued together one by one to construct spiraling 3-foot-tall table legs, lampshades finished in the most improbable fringe, or as pictured here, a room divider with Japanese flair, its red-dyed sticks arranged like cherry blossoms. The 56-year-old antiques dealer calls them "riffsticks" — each stick like a short melodic note repeated over and over. - from the L.A times,0,4008394.photogallery
The man makes gorgeous, with a capital "G", lamps, and tables, chairs and screens and a couple of mirrors too.
these two pictures come from the L.A. Times article
 and the link to see more is above
David's website is here and from there I found some more talent in the form of little  wooden sticks.

Brad Griffith- craftstick bending video, great info and some skill that might be very useful for crafts. Build your skills.

Stephen Guman- Aspiring World Record Breaker-  too much time on his hands. Popsicle stick addictions gone wild.

Steven J. Backman-The essence of patience- full of patience and tooth picks, the things people in western culture will do to skip meditation ;-D

Chang's Art- I really love the eggs and the airplanes.

Jack Hall the matchstick man-  Jack's claim to fame is the beautiful instraments that he crafted out of used match sticks. Gorgeous music.

Robert C. Haifley- 6 foot tall sculpture of toothpicks

Wayne Kusy- Ships of Picks

Franceska Mc Cullough- the sculptor of toothpicks

Stan Munro's Toothpick city- a whole world of tiny wood sticks

DIY- lots of pics of houses, cd holders, helicopters, bookends, ships, tape dispensers,trains, clocks, lights, coasters, and a bunch of other amazing constructions. Worth the look see.

Tim Fort-  Exploding sticks, made out of tongue depressors, this is wonderful to watch.

Bob Shamey- incredible little carvings in tooth picks, unbelievable!!


Tuesday, June 21, 2011

A new unzipped heart design- Boo

It is Tuesday in my land, I hope yours is a wonderful one.
Tell yourself you are a perfect piece of the world, every time negative thoughts pop up in your head.

I am a perfect piece of the world, now!
I am wonderful!
I am good!
I am love!

And now a new unzipped heart- BOO!

He is telling you that it is getting close to that time of the year again.
Time to find your costume, time to take off this one.
Time to have a party.
Time be something you have always wanted to be but were afraid of what someone would think.
Unzipped Heart Boo!

Monday, June 20, 2011

A new unzipped heart, again- Squawk

Happy Monday all of you!
Make this the best week of your life. Do me a favor, look for the good in every situation that passes your way this week.

I thought since I am away I would show you some more new designs.

This is the version of the unzipped heart that you carry with you to remember your love for the Tropics or the jungle.

Unzipped heart- Squawk

Saturday, June 18, 2011

A new design- The cross

This is a new cross with lots of flowers. Each one of the flowers has been made by hand with each petal and leaf hand rolled, shaped, and applied.
The cross is bronze clay.
It s a handmade bail with 20 gauge wire.
It is hung from stain cord.

It is small and delicate in design.
Nature Cross 1

Friday, June 17, 2011

On a wing and a prayer

I am winging my way back to Washington D.C.

I will try to keep up with this blog and I have a couple of planned blogs, but today as this gets posted to you all, I am in the airport, doing my usual freak out before I get on the plane. ;-D Unless of course I am not!!
I do not drink coffee now so it might be better than ever before.
I never want to leave and then when I get in the air and it is quiet and I can read books and look at mags and have time to think a little, I relish the time to myself. I do not get much of that.

I am so grateful to be able to do what I love and create all of the time, but most of the time it is interrupted by "gramma I hugry" and "gramma I have poop" and "I don wanna watch george, I wanna watch gabba gabba". The little statements of personality that are starting to blossom in this young girl!
I fix countless meals because when you spend most of your time jumping up and down you burn up calories, which she does all day long, and which is also a lesson for me in *move your body* gramma.
It is my fault, I want her to eat good food so I make it and then do the dishes too!

I am also grateful to be in this baby's life, to be a part of her memories, and to be there for her. I just need to remind myself of that sometimes, and some days, more than a few times an hour.

I am going to visit a dear friend and then we are off to a retreat in Orkney Springs.
Here is more about the retreat area, it is really very interesting too

I am going to spend time in nature, play with art materials, and I am going to laugh and laugh long and hard.
This is a group of dear women with all kinds of talents and skills and it is going to be big fun!

So as I sail over my home and on my way in the big blue sky, it is with regret and yet an excitement of heart that I wave good-bye to all of you and to my dear, dear family.
I will be back to tell you of my tales and stories.
Have a wonderful weekend, my friends, and a greater week ahead.
Please go ahead and comment because I love it when you do. I will try to check in once in a while.
Up, up, and away!!!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

A new unzipped heart- under the sea


This polymer clay heart is unzipped so you can see you can carry your love of the sea with you. There is a small ocean scene in there, crab, star fish, seahorse and shells.

The whole piece has been antiqued or washed with brown acrylic paint to give a feel of antiquity to it.
The Crab, shells, seaweed, seahorse and star fish is washed with gold. The zipper has been highlighted with silver acrylic.
There are two stars, one on each side of the top of the zipper holding it in place.
There are words stamped in the background on the heart.

The heart is 2 1/2" high and 1 15/16" wide and it is 1/2" thick.

There is a large copper ring in the top of the heart from which hangs a 36” piece of red cord.
It will hang about 16-17 inches. The cord is easily removable if you wish to add your own chain or cord.
The ends of the cord are dipped into a red fabric paint to keep them from unraveling.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Finished on the 15th- Fave Crafts Blog Hop- a little hope

Well, another 15th of the month and a Fave Crafts Blog hop is here. Welcome to all of you new to my blog, I hope you enjoy your visit and come back again sometime.
To all of you that visit here regular like, HI!!

Can you believe that it is the 15th of June? The year is half way over and the second half will be here soon.
Is it that my life is so full of stuff, that things are moving so fast?
How about you? Do you feel as if time is whizzing by?

Just a reminder for all of you that make your Christmas presents, START NOW!

Well, the thing that I got finished this month is a flower cane with and with out background and the instructions on how to make a Bottle of Hope.
Here are the links, there are 4 parts to this:

Bottles of Hope were thought up by a wonderful woman name Diane Gregoire who was going through breast cancer treatments in the late '90's.
She would take the bottles used in hers and others treatments and place polymer clay around them, then she would return for more treatments and pass them out to the people who were there for treatments too.
I met Diane in 1999 and fell in love with her attitude and lust for life and thriving through one of the most horrific diagnoses one can receive in life. Her large lovely grace gifted my life and I went out and taught about the program and talked to others about Diane and her bottles. I was travelling all over the world at the time and it was fun to spread the word.
Little did I know how much it would mean to me later in life when my mother and Sister in law were diagnosed with this dreaded disease.
I made 300+ bottles for my sister-in-law while she was going through treatments and before she died. I would get a call every week when I sent them, from her saying "oh I am keeping this one" or "I have a special person to give this one too". I loved it. It gave me some thing to do. I felt like I was helping somehow.
My guild and I have been making bottles of hope ever since and have been closely affiliated with Moore's cancer center and Dr. Casden over the years, we even have Bottles of Hope Clay Days. Yay Team!
It has been most rewarding and fulfilling  even in the tragedy of it.
Isn't that what life is about, finding something of value and light in the dark parts?
It is for me!!
Go out and find some light!!!
Go out and make the light!!!
Go out and spread some light!!!
Go out and be the light!!!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Flower cane and Bottle of hope- part 4

This is the how to cover the Bottle of hope and make the lid. It is continued from part 3 here,

You will need:

Violet Cernit- 1, 2.2 ounce packages
Opaque White Cernit- 3, 2.2 ounce packages
Black Cernit-1, 2.2 ounce packages
Yellow Cernit- 1. 2.2 ounce package
Blue Cernit- 1, 2.2 ounce package
Porcelain White Cernit- large package 1.1 pound
Clay Machine
Clay Slicing Blade
Acrylic roller

All links lead to my hubby's store
Thank you so much for looking, we appreciate that. ;-D

Mix all of the colors, even the black and opaque white with an equal amount of porcelain white.

69. Roll out a sheet of the Opaque white cernit on the 4th or 5th thickest (this depends on what you like, the clay you are using, and how thick or thin your 4th or 5th setting is) setting in your clay machine.
Lay the bottle on top of the sheet and trim the leading edge so it is straight.
Trim the bottom edge to the bottom of the bottle.

70. Roll the bottle over the other side of the sheet, making a mark with the leading edge and trim just inside the line you made with the leading edge.
Just like covering the canes we have done in the other lessons.

71. First you want to press in around the neck and ease the clay around the indent. This is different on every bottle and some may take more time and care than others. Try not to trap any air in there.

72. Hold the blade level with the top of the bottle and trim off the excess bringing the blade around the top of the bottle. The blade will lay right on top of the bottle.

73. Trim along the bottom the same way.

74. Using a cutter that is slightly smaller than the bottom of the bottle roll out a sheet of clay that is on the 4th or the 5th setting of the clay machine, cut out a round of clay.

75. Press the round on to the bottom and press down in the very center,
Go to one edge and work your way around the bottom of the bottle closing the edge.

 76. You can then press the edges together. Do this all the way around.

77. I then like to roll the edge on my work surface.

78. I roll the bottle on my work surface to smooth the fingerprints out or off.

79. Take a 7/8" ball of the opaque white Cernit and roll it till it is smooth on the surface.

80. Roll in to a teardrop. Roll into a teardrop by rolling on one side of the ball.

81. It will look like this. The thinner end should fit inside of the bottle opening.

82. Place in the opening of the bottle. Shape the lid.
Keep from pushing it on to the lip of the bottle.

83. Gently take it out of the bottle by turning gently and pulling it out.
Cut off the end at about 1/2" or more so the stopper is not too long on the bottom.

84. Place the stopper back in the bottle to reshape and decorate the bottle.
I sliced off a large slice from the flower cane and then rolled down a small section (2") of the cane to about 1/4" and sliced off small flowers about 1/8" thick and place them around the neck of the bottle.

85. I added the flower with out a border to the top all the way around the larger slice and then added some of the plain petals to the bottom placing the points of the petals in to the dips between the 1/4" round flowers.
I rolled down some of the plain shaded blue cane and added those slices between the petals.

86. Gently pull the top back out of the bottle twisting as you go.
Bake the top out of the bottle on a piece of corrugated cardboard in a 275 degree preheated oven for 30 minutes, shut off oven and let cool a bit. Pull out of the oven and place the stopper back in the bottle while still warm and let cool completely.
The stopper will stay in the bottle and will pop in and out when you remove it or put it back in!
I like the tops made this way because we never lose the top then. When we do lots and lots of bottle and the tops fall out all of the time, sometimes it is hard to find the matches and sometimes we lose them when transporting them too!
This way they are always in the bottle.

I stained this bottle with some brown Ne-Opaque and washed off the excess with a damp not sopping old towel. I then blushed on some hi-lite blue Lumiere to the slices of the canes.