Saturday, April 30, 2011

What Excites You?

I'm asking the DIYers..crafters..and artisans.

What excites your creative muses? Is it nature, an article, a blog post or something yummy you found on Etsy?

After the loooooong hard Northern Michigan winter, my spread you wings program was frozen. It was spring and time to clean house. Yes.. the windows are sparkling and winter has been washed away. The spring pillows and curtains are up and in place. But my creative house was a mess.

No matter what I did... I just couldn't get in a creative groove. I have two king sized quilts to make and the little just for me projects are what get me through such long and involved quilting projects. But nothing was comming to me.

I sat down in my studio and watched a pair of robins build a nest in the pine tree. I've never seen one there before....and that got me thinking. If the robins can spread their wings and fly so far, build nests in places they have never been before...maybe that's what I should do.

I've always wanted to draw and paint. I can't even draw a good stick figure so I didn't know where to begin. I went on line and found some simple shapes and silhouettes and trace..trace...traced. As I watched the pencil float over the original figure, I found there was a flow to the movements I was making. After a few very poor attempts to wing it, I looked down at my sketch pad and I had a butterfly....and it really looked like a butterfly!

Being the fabric junkie that I admittedly am, I had to put my butterfly on fabric rather than canvas.

 Butterflies on a little swing dress PLUS the little girls name!

This is the result! I had so much fun when I stopped forcing myself and looked within... to what excited me.

Give it a try youself and watch magic happen :-)

Saturday, April 23, 2011

When Did the Handmade Bug Bite You?

I think we all have a creative spirit! The handmade Valentine or the tie-dyed tee shirt. Getting bit by the handmade bug is taking that creativity to the next level....where creating something is what makes your day.... smile.

I have been a crafter all my life.
My brother and I were raised by a single mother and money was tight.

Left to right: Mom, my brother Scott, Me, Grandma and Grandpa in the back

Every Christmas we created handmade treasures for the family with the loving tutelage of my mom..the seamstress and my grandpa... the woodworker.
We made note holders that looked like chickens with clothes pin beaks, cross stitched dish towels and an ever growing collection of felt ornaments. I took such pride in knowing my gift was unique and made from my own hands and heart.

In my teenage years...I was embarrassed to admit I made anything by hand. Store bought was much more chic! Oh...I was a dopey teenager.

As a young mother, I created patterns to make "name pillows" for my babies nursery walls. They became such a hit with my friends that in 6 months I had a booming business right in my dining room. This was my wake up call that handmade was not only cool...but soooo profitable!

The handmade bug bit me hard.

From that point on, my handmade journey has taken me to some amazing places... in my life and in my heart.
Let me shar that journey with you in the next few posts.

Thank you for stopping by today!