colorful creations - paintings and a card

These are my latest works.  I must be feeling cheerful because I am really drawn to bright, primary colors right now.

To make this card I painted strips of watercolor paper with watercolor markers, which are new to me and I am loving them.  I blended each color and then die-cut the strips of paper using these dies from Papertrey Ink.  I layered the different dies creating very colorful flowers.  The "It's your birthday" stamp is from Simon Says Stamp.  I don't know why I'm suddenly drawn to making cards again, but I'm thoroughly enjoying it.  Last week I had two great father's day cards ready to go, and I'll be sending this card to my granny in a couple weeks.  No scrambling around trying to quick make a card.  The sky might start falling next. 


All of this experimenting with watercolor markers with my card making inspired me to paint.  I have not painted for several weeks,  just hadn't felt like it since my bird installation.  But inspiration finally hit me!  These were fun to do, and I love watercolor because it pushes me creatively.  Most decisions are final, unlike acrylic where you can layer and paint over areas that are not working.  Yes, you can layer with watercolor, but it's totally different. 


This is what the above painting would look like framed:


These two paintings are small, both are 6 X 8.  Really love this size.  You could frame them, or send them as a little thank you card, like I'm going to do for one of my artist friends.  Original art doesn't come any more affordable. ;)  These will be added to my shop this week!



inspo interiors - 4th of July decor

The 4th of July holiday always sneaks up on me.  Maybe because the month of June is always so busy for us, I don't know.  I always have grand plans of doing really special things for this holiday... There's still time to pull it all together right?

Here are a few ideas I would love to try, at a minimum they are inspiring me. 

4th of July Wreath | Ombre Wreath by @saracwalk | Embroidery Hoop and Rag Wreath
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4th of july ribbon wands
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Happy 4th of July | Camille Styles
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A step-by-step guide to master the pavlova; a simple and beautiful special occasion cake from @natashaskitchen 

*photos without a source are my own. 


on my radar - straw beach bags



It's officially summer and I am in the market for a new pool bag.  I am currently considering a straw tote, with of course some kind of embellishment.  Any of these bags would do!

1.  Mar y Sol 'Collins Tote'

2.  Vineyard Vines Straw Tassel Basket Bag

3.  Target Straw Tote

4.  Old Navy Straw Tote (on sale!)

5.  Straw Tote with Peony flower via Flute of the Hour etsy shop

6.  Mar y Sol 'Cape Peninsula Tote'


new paintings availble

I added these two paintings from my landscape series to my shop today. 



inspo interiors - banquette seating

Who doesn't love to sit at a booth at a restaurant? I would much rather sit in a cozy booth than a chair and that might be why I just adore window seats, banquettes, and benches.  In addition to being a great way to add extra seating when you need it, banquettes are also a great way to add more texture, color and variety to a room.  Here are a few of my favorites.



 

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Use a banquette for extra seating at the dinner table and as an extra guest bed. Designed by Erin Martin and Kim Dempster. housebeautiful.com #dining_room #decorating_shortcuts #trestle_table

 In the breakfast room of Ben Soleimani's Beverly Hills home, the banquette is covered in a Rose Tarlow Melrose House fabric; the large Chinese vase is 19th-century, and the shelves hold antique mahogany boxes and fruitwood tea caddies.

 

on my radar - random finds

Here are a few things that caught my eye in the last week or two.

*I love these shoes.  I'm so close to pulling the trigger, but now they are on back-order. 


*I bought some plastic popsicle makers at Target last week.  So far we've just added fresh fruit and juice or sprite and gummy bears, but these cherry cheesecake pops are up next.  These skinny peach pie popsicles sound good too. 

cherry cheesecake ice pop
 

*Ines de la Fressange has a new shop in Paris.  You can read about it here.  I love her whole esthetic so much. 

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*This happy camper stamp and coordinating die cut set from Papertrey Ink - so cute.   

* Maya Angelou video.  A friend shared this on facebook this week.  So beautiful.  Love liberates, amen.  

*And another friend shared this with me:  How to replace instagram with a sketchbook.  Awesome. 






for the love of gold foil - a minc review

I recently purchased this lovely gold foil machine called, "Minc" made by American Crafts.  This is the smaller Anna Griffin 6 inch version, designed to use mainly for gold foiling cards and small embellishments.  In addition to gold foil, it also can be used with glitter sheets.  This version is available at HSN.  I have to say, I love this machine.  Who doesn't love gold foil?  The only negative is only a laser printed image will adhere to the foil, so if you don't have a laser printer you need to go to your local office supply store or copy place and have them make a copy for you.  Or ask your husband to take them to work and copy them there...   The kit from HSN does come with lots of ready to go images. So right out of the box you can start gold foiling!
Anna Griffin® Minc 6" Foil & Glitter Machine Bundle

Here is the first embellishment I made. 



Ella and I are crafting. Poor girl is sick and missed all but an hour of her last day of school. P.s. This minc machine is amazing! Gold foil for everyone! #minc #annagriffin #craft #goldfoil #americancrafts
 

And this is a card I made my sister.  I used the gold foil and the glitter. 


Next I'm going to foil some of my own designs, just have to get that laser printer ordered.  ;)  I'll keep you posted. 


inspiring me today - beautiful cheese boards and crudités

I could survive on cheese and crackers for every meal, so in my perfect world these cheese boards and crudités would be all I would eat.  These images I've been collecting on my pinterest board are so beautiful.  You almost wouldn't want to eat them, almost... 

Hopefully this gives you some inspiration for you weekend!

crudite platter

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Cheese Tray

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wethepeoplestyle's photo on Instagram

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Beautiful food displayed on a simple board.

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My tips and tricks for how to make a great cheese platter for entertaining. Perfect for the holidays! #entertaining #glutenfree| iowagirleats.com

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on my radar - father's day




Here are a few Father's Day ideas.  Instead of just pulling fantastic items I've found on the internet, these are actually items my husband or I own, use and love. 

1.  Utz chips.  The best chips evah.  If you don't live in an area of the country where they sell them for $1.99 at the grocery store, don't worry you can buy them online.  You're welcome.

2.  Keysmart minimalist key organizer.  My husband has one of these and loves it. 

3.  Peter Thomas Roth anti-aging cleansing gel.  Hey, the guys need to take care of their skin too.  We both use this product and love it. 

4.  Paderno spirializer.  I don't have this exact model, but these spirializers are great if your guy wants pasta, but no carbs. 

5.  The Big Bobber.  This really needs no explanation of it's awesomness.

6.  Valley County, original abstract landscape painting.  My husband has three of my paintings in his office.  Not sure if he would consider a painting a great father's day gift or not, but I thought it looked good in the collage.  ;)

more crafty than painty

Lately, I've felt drawn to making crafts over painting.  I don't know why, but I'm going with it because if I am being creative then I am happy.  I used to make a lot of handmade cards and want to get back to that.  It is a good feeling to have a lovely card to put in the mail, and not have to rush and panic to make one real quick. 

Last week I took a class called "Maskerade" by Jennifer Mcquire and several other amazing artists.  I thought it would be a great way to refresh and be inspired.  I was right.  The class was fantastic.  These are the first two cards I made using the techniques I learned.  My brother wants to me combine my love of paper arts with my love of abstract painting.  Not sure how I can combine the two so for now I'll just attempt to do both separately. 



Speaking of my paintings, I've added several new paintings to my shop.  You can find them here

inspo interiors - kitchens

Two years ago we remodeled our kitchen.  It was a major project, that seemed to take forever, but was well worth it in the end.  I took a little break from looking at kitchen design because I was a little burned out, but my obsession is back because I am helping a friend of a friend design her kitchen.  In addition we just did a little remodel of our cabin kitchen.  I haven't totally put the cabin back together, but will share photos as soon as I do.  Anyway, here are some kitchens that are currently inspiring me.

I love the look and feel of this kitchen.  To me if feels warm and welcoming.  I am on the hunt for a similar mirror for above my stove at the cabin.


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The people who I'm helping with their kitchen design currently have a galley kitchen.  I haven't been to the space yet, but am looking at galley kitchens for inspiration.  I think they want to open the space up to a living room.  I am not one big on taking out walls.  Walls serve a purpose, and I like my rooms separate.  I know I am often alone in this thinking, because big open spaces/great rooms are so popular.   

One thing I love about this kitchen (besides the stove, awesome table and counter tops) is the window seat.  I love window seats or any kind of bench seating in a kitchen.  I wanted to add one in my kitchen but then I wouldn't have had any room for an island and that would mean very little counter space.  For once I chose function over form!

To fit seating into the tight space, he added a breakfast nook. The wraparound bench eliminated the need for chairs and added lots of much-n...
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The doors!  The floor!  Love the simplicity, but it is still warm and inviting.  Maybe it's our cold and rainy spring that's making crave this warm spaces?  Notice also the counter tops.  I think it's so important to add wood in some form to a kitchen.  It adds...  Warmth!

B L O O D A N D C H A M P A G N E . C O M:
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This is a lovely galley kitchen.  It has everything I love.  White, wood, and open shelving.

 I am obsessed with this kitchen // wood countertops + white cabinets + open shelving + farm sink
design by Sarah Sherman Samuel found via here

Hopefully my recent research will help me today when I see my "clients" space.  I say clients in quotes, because it's not an actual job.  I just show up, give people my opinion for free and then I'm on my merry way.  I get my design fix, without any headaches!  It's a win-win for sure.

Happy weekend!







on my radar - tassels and pom poms


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I love tassels and pom poms.  I started "hearting" them on etsy awhile ago and finally bought a couple (The tassels on my bag were purchased here.).  They add just a touch of color, whimsy and fun to a bag or tote.  It's an easy and inexpensive way to change up your favorite handbag.  Here are a few of my favorites.

1.  Furbish Studio elephant bag charm 2. Leather tassel/keychain (great price!) 3. Clare V leather tassel  4. Hot pink fur pom pom (next on my list!)   5. Anya Hindmarch Neeson tote (this is now sold out) 6. Mar y Sol Collins woven tote


Doodle, not Google

Were you one of those people who constantly doodled in your notebooks in high school and college?  Me too.  A couple months ago I received a newsletter from one of the artists' groups I belong to and the letter from the president was titled, "Doodle, not Google."  The gist of the letter was we spend so much time on line, not enough on our art.  I am very guilty of this, the internet is a huge distraction for me and makes it very easy for me to procrastinate.  After I read the letter I thought, what a great idea because I love to doodle!  So I decided that I would make an effort when I'm at a soccer practice or dance or waiting in my car in the pick-up line at school to break out a journal and doodle.  And put my darn phone down.  Here are a couple of my recent doodles.