Wednesday, April 29, 2015

What's on Your Workdesk Wednesday (WOYWW)

Yesterday's desk started off with an insane amount of chaos. But, I took the time to clean it off and start anew. This morning, I found only two projects on it.

I started with the in-progress art journal page.

And finished it quickly with some doodling.

Now to focus on some jewelry-making.

I'm linking up my desk at Stamping Ground's What's on Your Workdesk Wednesday.

Seriously, what's on your workdesk today?

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Thrift Haul

I've had a few opportunities to go thrifting lately, so it's about time to share what I've picked up. First, I made a video a little over a week ago (and just uploaded it this morning) of some of my thrift haul.

As well, over the weekend I hit a few yard sales in my immediate area. (I'm a little disappointed I didn't venture out further as there were apparently several large neighborhood yard sales that I  missed. Oh well.) 

The first stop was a local church's sale. They had boxes of items all lined up and let you fill a shopping bag for $1.
I grabbed some books: another dictionary, a youth hymnal, and this Outlines of Music History.
I like the polka dots on the tin bank that held those plastic vials (perfect for beads) and the tin plate caught my eye too.
While I was at it, I threw in the Dot to Dot game pad and this notebook that had some writing in it (perfect for art journals/collages).

Next was a small neighborhood sale.
There were only four houses participating in the garage sale, and this pretty light blue. . .candy dish (?) was the only item I bought. There were a few more things that I wanted, but the prices were a little steep for my taste.

I stopped at one last yard sale on my way home.
I was able to get all these pieces, destined to be taken apart and upcycled,  for only a buck.

One of the great things about Spring (besides the weather) is the abundance of yard sales you can find each weekend. I was glad to be able to eke out a little time to treasure hunt. Have you found any great treasures yourself lately?

I'm linking up this post at:
Show and Share on Coastal Charm
Let's Talk Vintage on Bella Rosa Antiques
Thrifter Share on Hey What's for Dinner Mom?
Vintage Bliss Tuesday on Woman in Real Life
Vintage Inspiration Party on My Salvaged Treasures

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Journaling by 5s (Inspired by Shannon Green)

About a month ago, I happened upon the art journal craze "Journaling by 5s". This was the brainchild of artist Shannon Green. The concept was easy and results achieved fairly quickly. So, I jumped on the bandwagon. Here's the basic structure of it.

Let me explain a little further - using a 20 page journal (most are composition notebooks with pages glued together to make only 20 pages), you work in the journal for 15 minutes each session using only 1-2 mediums (each of the 5 sessions is assigned two mediums). At the end of the 5 sessions, you have a mostly completed art journal. After that, you do some 'free play' to add the finishing touches. Shannon explains it much more eloquently in her initial Journaling by 5s video

Anyway. . I made my own, so I thought I'd share. Though it took me forever to get through it (because of the recording and editing and whatnot), it's really a quick, easy, and fun process to get a completed journal. I cheated a little with session 3 - you'll see in my videos. Almost all of the videos show my process, with the exception of the last one - which is a flip-through. Here are links:
Journaling by 5s - Session 2 (collage/recycle)

If you're simply interested in how my pages came together or a better look at each of them, these are my final results. (A larger image should pop up if you click on each of the pictures.)
Page 1
Page 2
Page 3
Page 4
Page 5
Page 6
Page 7
Page 8
Page 9
Page 10
Page 11
Page 12
Page 13
Page 14
Page 15
Page 16
Page 17
Page 18
Page 19
Page 20
I really, really enjoyed this process. In the end, I was ready to just be done. The unfinished look of the last few pages could probably tell you that. I like that in just a few hours, you can have a completed journal. Or if you've only got a few minutes, you can do one session. I've already bought a new journal (and some 'wrinkle free' glue sticks - the wrinkles on my pages drove me crazy!) and will likely start another one of these before too long. 

Have you found any ways to direct your creative energy in short bursts like this? I'd love to know how you get creative when you're short on time.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Local Feature: Country Queen Cafe

Once again the Southern Bloggers Jubilee meet in a fun, tasty location. This month it was the newly opened Country Queen Cafe.

The cafe was a dream of owner Betty Maradik who had previously worked at a small diner in Mobile for several years.

She got more room than she asked for when her husband built the place.
This is only one side of the dining area.
Betty's menu is simple, focusing on breakfast and lunch staples.
We were there for breakfast, and I got scrambled eggs, a biscuit, cheese grits, and bacon (not pictured). It was delish!
Besides the menu staples, there are lunch specials each day (posted on the Country Queen Cafe Facebook Page at about 10am daily).
With specials like these, I almost stayed for lunch too!
We were unsure what Chicken Lips were, so Betty gave us a sample before our meeting ended.
They're lightly battered thin strips of chicken covered in buffalo sauce with a side of blue cheese dressing. They were fab!!
Everything about the Country Queen Cafe was rustic, homey, and had me wanting to come back for more! And, with it just up the street from my house. . .I know I'll be back.

Country Queen Cafe is located at 19548 Booth Rd., Fairhope, AL 36532. Currently they are open 7am-2pm Monday-Friday. However, Betty is considering offering a Sunday Brunch. She also mentioned that catering will soon be available as well as the space being available for events. So much excitement, keep your eye on this little place. It's sure to be a local hit.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

From the CraftyHope Etsy Shop

With all the (my) excitement surrounding the Art Show and antique mall display, it's been far too long since I've shared some of what's in the CraftyHope Etsy Shop. While I try to recoup from vacation, get my house in order, and get my head on straight let me go ahead and do that before I sink into any other blog post topics.

First up is the newest piece in the shop. I let the winged heart focal from Tree Wings Studio really be the star of this necklace.
Winged Heart Necklace

These earrings are all kinds of unique! The wood beads were hand painted by me and the discs are old game pieces.
Bingo Chip Earrings

So delicate, girly, and romantic; this necklace features a reproduction keyhole (scrapbook element) that I colored with some guilder's paste along with a small ceramic Gaea rose connector.
Sweet Keyhole Necklace

I thrifted this brass knob backplate some time ago without any notion of what I would do with it. It only took some resin flowers, a few holes drilled by my handy Pat, and simple beaded dangles to up the wow factor and transform hardware into wearable art.
Hardware Garden Necklace

Another set of altered awesome-ness; these earrings were lowly brass office brads before I worked some magic on them with Vintaj patinas.
Unexpected Earrings

With a bezel in hand, I looked for elements to fill it. A single-hole mother of pearl button-ish thing and a metal crown fit together nicely. ICE Resin sealed it all together. The crown made me think of my cousin (she's the princess) whose favorite color is purple. So, with small purple beads and some glass pearls, the chain flew together for this regal necklace.
Delicate Crown Necklace

These earrings may not make much of a statement, but their subtle beauty cannot be denied. Again, I used brads, but these are decorate scrapbook ones. They were paired with glass moonstone beads.
Pale Lilac Daisy Earrings

Finally, this bracelet was re-listed. It was published in Jewelry Stringing's Summer 2013 issue in the Bracelet Gallery section. It features the work of several bead artists including Gaea, Humblebeads, and SueBeads. It's stunning and also adjustable!
April Bracelet

There's plenty more goodies to see in the CraftyHope Etsy shop. Let me know what your favorite is! Did I showcase it here or is it something else in the shop?

Monday, April 13, 2015

Vacation and My First Art Show. . .wrapping up

We're back from Spring Break and all the excitement of the Art Show. This week is already starting off with a frenzy of activity so I'm up early and thought I would share a little more about this past week with you.
We enjoyed several more sunrises from our location on Perdido Bay

The HUGE wrap around screen porch was our favorite 'room' in the whole place. There were oodles of rocking chairs, three hanging beds, a hammock, and a porch swing. Heaven!

I even got a little work done from one of the hanging beds. I just pulled up a table and set to work making these stacking rings.
This was my view while I worked!

As for the art show this weekend. . .Y'all!! I was so, so anxious. I was a bundle of nerves and excitement and tense energy. I was able to go and set up a few hours before the show, which helped get out some of that energy.
This was my table all set up for the show. Pat laser cut me a few busts that I altered with some paper but the rest of my displays were made with items from the dollar store that I spray painted and glued together. The large baking sheet on the back right didn't work out so well as the necklaces kept sliding off.

Here's a closer look at the left side of my display. You should be able to click the photo for a larger image.
And, this is the right side. It's a bit harder to see since the door was on that side.
I'll admit that I was clueless about what I needed to do. I tried smiling and saying hello to each person that looked over my pieces. I told them to let me know if they had any questions. But, I have such a hard time speaking to others that this took every ounce of my willpower. I ended up selling a few items, making a trade with one of the other artists, and garnering some attention as quite a few people took my cards. I even talked with the owner of a local boutique who gave me some tips and said she might be in contact with me. I went home happy but extremely exhausted.

This event was only a few hours long and it was a perfect starting point for me for something like this. I'm relieved to finally have some experience doing it and that makes me happy. Pat and I have some tweaks to make with the displays, but it went well all in all. I gained so much from it.

I'd love to know if you have any tips on doing an art show: presenting yourself and your product in the best light. 

Now. . .to face this frenzy of a week!! Here's hoping you have a great one.