Friday, December 19, 2008

90 New Jewelry Kaleidoscopes!

That's right! 90! You can check out the whole collection on my website, Dawn Blair Jewelry, or on my Flickr photostream.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Yummy Copper Jewelry

End of a Long Road 2, forged pendant by Vagabond Jewelry
Egyptian Cuff copper chainmaille with hand made glass cartouche beads by Redcrow at Corvus Chainmaille
Pretty Pearl Pod Necklace, electroformed seed pod with set pearl, by Tigerlilly Shop
You are probably thinking to yourself, "Yes, it is!" These featured artists are part of a Flickr Group Pool called Yummy Copper Jewelry. Last week, I was invited to join the group pool, and am so excited. The artists in the group do beautiful work. It is an honor to be included. Plus, what could possibly be better than copper?! Check out the whole photostream. And go back often. New jewelry is added to the group frequently.

Thursday, December 11, 2008


Paper Treasures! Right here in Topeka!
A very special surprise at BizBaz. I was doing the sprint in an effort to visit all the booths and see what other artists we making, while my mother watched my booth. I nearly fell over when I saw the quilling! I had been on Kathie and Gregg's site, Paper Treasures, many times over the past many months. I've been wanting to do a feature on the blog about quilling to honor my mother and one of the unique crafts we did together when I was a little girl. Kathie's designs are clean, well made, beautiful works of art made of rolled paper. I feel so happy to own one of her mum brooches. It is totally adorable on my vintage Lee jean jacket! What's even more exciting is that they are local- right here in Topeka! I still can't believe it. Please visit their site and consider one of these unique pieces for Christmas.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

snowy gray inspiration

Yesterday light snowfall inspired me to to bring the camera to work and shoot this picture of our now hibernating garden. I wanted to capture the moment in a piece of jewelry. So here is your first look at "Snowy Day", which I created last night.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Graphic artist, Gregor Volpert, on color

On November 10th, I sent out a call to artists to submit their thoughts about color. And for doing so, your name will be put in a drawing on Feb. 1st... (see Nov. 10th post). Anyhow, Graphic Artist Greg Volpert took the time so share some of his thoughts about color and it's various roles in his work.Beaders and jewelry artists, draw inspiration from Greg's color palette. And please do share your new creations with us. I promise to do the same. Okay folks, here's our mini interview- * Do you believe the region of the country you live in, or city vs. country, influences your chosen color palette? I know that the earth tones, trees, water, fields, and vast skyscapes of my beloved Kansas countryside influence my choices. I spent a lot of my childhood exploring the woods and lying on my belly, peering into creeks at crawdads and pickerel frogs. Frogs, and goats, have the most beautiful eyes, like gold-flecked jewels. An autumn walk through a field that looks uniformly tan from the highway uncovers a whole unexpected world of colors: reds, purples, greens and golds, blues and grays and whites. And totally unexpected juxtapositions, and they work. I'm beginning to think there's no such thing as "a color that doesn't appear in nature". I live in a city where a spectacular rainbow, towering miles into the sky and spanning the eastern horizon, made the front page of the newspaper this summer. Crowds of shoppers were pouring out of the stores to see it and take pictures, calling their friends on cell phones, "HURRY! You've got to see this!" In the east, an electrifying triple rainbow, neon-vivid against a slate-gray sky; turn 360 degrees; and in the west, a breathtaking sunset. No skyscrapers to obscure the view. * Does your color palette change because of current color in fashion or media? No, In SPITE of it! Retro is the new black! (...Sometimes I'll ask myself, "What would Thomas Kinkade do?" Because whatever Thomas Kinkade does, it's precisely what I do NOT want to do. Thomas Kinkade is the Antichrist!) * Are you challenged to find a color palette that defines you as an artist? Hey. I used to be. But I got wise. All I had to do was get me a Grumbacher color wheel. "Okay, I like golds and oranges. Why do blues and purples work so well with those? …Aha."* Are you challenged to constantly redefine your work with color? Once in a while I'll revisit an old project and go, dear god, what was I thinking? ...OR, I'll pat myself on the back and admit that I was a lot more sophisticated back then than I gave myself credit for. So ... sometimes yes, sometimes no. The enclosed piece (email me to view this image) is an example of an older project revisited and major coloristic changes made. The original was fine, but it was time to move into a new area. I can't wait to see what I do with it four or five years from now. * Are the colors you choose to work with influenced by the type of media you work in? Oh, definitely, definitely. If I'm working in colored pencil I tend to use subtler colors and gradations; but switch to paint and I become the Iron Chef. And having millions of colors of digital paint at my disposal gives me the whole symphony orchestra to play with, and the amphitheatre, and the recording studio. In fact sometimes I have to force myself to limit my palette, there's just too many choices.* How do you choose the colors you work with? Frequently I'm trying to achieve a trompe-l'oeil effect so obviously, the appearance of the object dictates the colors. If there's a specific mood or feel I need to convey, I'll make color choices accordingly; taking liberties with values and contrasts and whatnot. * Is your color palette chosen based on personal taste, or your perception of your own self? Well you see, that's one of the wonderful things about being an artist! You can impose your own tastes (or lack thereof) on the world. I'd say most of the time it's based on my own tastes, but wouldn't those be an outgrowth of one's self-perception? "I'm a witty sophisticate, hence my color choices shall reflect that." "I'm a worthless wretch, the world is a cold gray tomb, and my colors reflect that." "I'm an outrageous maverick who prizes shock value, and that extends to my use of color."* Do outside forces like music, politics, seasons, job environment, friendships etc. influence your color choices? You bet! All of the above and more. But you know what? Many times it's like a self-hypnosis thing, for instance: okay, I'm going through the most horrible time imaginable, I need to cheer myself up, I will consciously use happy, sunny colors even though I feel like something you scrape off your shoe. OR, I'm in a good state emotionally and spiritually, I can afford to explore the DARK SIDE.Music is inseparable from my creative process. I've gotta have music be it vintage jazz or Jefferson Airplane, whether I'm drawing or cooking. Music influences my colors, and it influences my spices! * Is your choice of color completely random? A matter of whatever is available to work with at the time a project is begun? Since most of my work these days is onscreen it's not a question of what's available. It's ALL available. And Hobby Lobby is only three blocks from my home, so if I need a different acrylic paint or a Prismacolor, it's just a matter of making sure I look presentable and marching down the hill. Except on Sundays of course. I may do some experimenting while I'm creating a piece but I usually have a good idea where I'm going. (Especially if I'm working under a deadline.) It's in those final, piddling-around, tweaking stages (where I'll move a line of type half a point[*], study it, and move it back) where I may make some arbitrary choices, just to see what effect they'll have. After all, there's always Command Z. [*] I'm not kidding about that half-a-point business. That's One 144th of an inch! Like anybody's gonna notice? * Are your color choices formulaic, or based on spiritual meaning of color? Ummm, maybe a little of both? Maybe there's a spiritual formula, a Golden Section for Color. A Divine Color Scheme: A Red scene is Mean, while Green is Serene? And Yellow is Mellow, but...what the heck rhymes with Orange? By way of winding up, I grabbed this paragraph out of my earlier e-mail to you, Dawn: Although I don't really consider that there's a typical Greg Volpert Color Scheme, I definitely have a signature style; and occasionally when I'm trying to jump-start the creativity I find myself using familiar colors, and combinations of color, that have worked for me before - kind of my Color Comfort Zone, I guess. I want to be more like the Mexicans when it comes to color. You know, BOLD. SURPRISING. FEARLESS. Greg Volpert does freelance work from his home in Lawrence, Kansas. --You may visit him at either website below. PORTFOLIOS:

Saturday, December 6, 2008

How do we make a difference?

The above photo is entitled Assume Nothing. This and many more spectacular photos on notsogoodphotography-'s Flickr photostream. The economy is bad and people are losing jobs and..... Yes, it is real. And now it is the holidays. What do we do? Here are some of my thoughts on the topic. And in case anyone is thinking, "I can't afford to do that." Think again. My own income is very, very limited. Yet, I feel I am able to make a difference in peoples lives in my own unique way. That is the thing. It is all about placing value on our own personal expression, and using that as a gateway for creating and giving. Give yourself permission to make things without judging yourself. Realize that just making a gesture of kindness, or encouraging words to others, whether we see a need or not, really does make a difference. Giving someone something that you took the time to make, no matter how it turns out, is worth far more than going to a department store and spending a bunch of money on something the person probably doesn't need anyway. If you are planning to give gifts this Christmas, consider making them this year. With so many craft and DIY websites and blogs out there these days, it is easy now to find cool projects that anyone can successfully do. If you just don't think you can, then consider regifting brand new items that were never used. Add a few other things to give it a personal touch. Like that cute coffee mug with the snowman you got last year- get some gourmet coffee and a few truffles and put in a decorative basket for a new gift to give a different friend. If you just simply don't have time to fuss with all of this, then PLEASE consider buying handmade items directly from artists and crafters. Know for a fact where your money is going. Know that artists really need your support right now (as do galleries). You are really making a difference by supporting the person who put their time and love into creating their art or craft, and the person who receives the gift will appreciate that you thought enough of them to buy a one of a kind gift for them. Above all remember to GIVE YOUR TIME. Your time is the most precious gift you can give. It is important to carve out time, even when it seems impossible, to spend with the people you care about. When you are out and about, y0u can make a real difference by just being helpful. People are so stressed out right now. Just a smile, or helping someone get something off the top shelf at the grocery store, or letting an elderly person go in front of you in line can really turn things around. It can also inspire those who saw your random act of kindness to do the same. Remember, it's NOT all about the money. It's all about being creative. Finding creative solutions to the lack of money and resources can often produce things of unimaginable beauty. Look inside yourself for your own creative gifts to give. Then watch and listen wherever you go. People need the smiles and kind gestures we can all give. Our own lives become richer when we are able to give, no matter what we are giving or to whom we give it. Here are some websites that can help you on your crafty holiday adventures. Craftzine Blog Crafty-Moms Country Living Crafts DIY Network Christmas How To Videos West Coast Crafty ecobites The Elfster This is only a starter list. There are thousands of sites out there. Just do a Google search for what you want to do or buy. With the exception of Craftzine and DIY, the others on the list I just happened upon with one Google search. Have fun everybody, and be sure and share what you are making!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

At the Library on Sunday Dec.7

The Elarius Duo
Music for a Sunday Afternoon: Elaris Duo Sunday, December 7, 1:00–2:00 PM Marvin Auditorium 101BC at the Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library Larisa and Steven Elisha internationally acclaimed violin and cello artists will perform special pieces from their newest recording, Duo Virtuoso.
Larisa and Steven Elisha have distinguished themselves around the world as soloists, chamber musicians and teachers. Together they are the incomparable Elaris Duo whose electrifying performances and consummate artistry have delighted audiences from the moment their association began.
Recipients of the prestigious 2008 Governor s Arts Award in the category of Artist, the Elaris Duo have been awarded a Chamber Music America Residency Grant for 2005-2006, Musicians of the Year 2003 by the Kansas Federation of Music Clubs and selected for the Kansas Artists on Tour Program roster. In March, 2008, the duo appeared as featured soloists with the Taiwan National Arts Orchestra in the famed National Hall and in January, 2007 presented a performance at the Hawaii International Conference for Arts and Humanities.
Steven can also be credited with saving me from a lifetime of neck and back pain. He teaches a more ergonomic way of playing, that has helped me immensely. Please come out for the performance. They are outstanding.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Thank You!

Thank you to everyone who attended BizBaz and supported the art and craft community. We are all struggling to keep ourselves afloat. So, isn't it nice to know exactly where your money is going this holiday season. Please tell your friends and family to support handmade this season.
I have a major cold due to night after night of working late to make enough jewelry for all my fall shows. BizBaz was my last show of the season, so now I can rest and take care of myself. I will be taking a week off from designing, and may not post to the blog again until later in the week. It was really great meeting you all at the show. Stay warm!

Friday, November 28, 2008

BIZARRE BAZAAR 2008 Tomorrow!

Well it's that time again. The best show of the year- BizBaz, in Lawrence. I set up tonight and the show is tomorrow from 9am to 5pm. DON'T MISS IT! This is the place to do all of your Christmas shopping. The variety, uniqueness, and quality of the items being sold is outstanding. Here's a link to the BizBaz website. And, here are the details. Hope to see you there! Bizarre Bazaar 2008 Saturday, November 29th 9am to 5pm Lawrence Art Center 940 New Hampshire Street Lawrence, KS

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

New Work

Sorry folks, I am keeping this one for myself! These delicate copper leaves were made by basket artist Teresa Johnston. She very generously came out to the studio and showed me how to make these leaves, and also flame patina them with a small torch. Very exciting! I made this in the wee hours of the morning. Two other designers and I stayed up all night on a Saturday night and just laughed and had a great time making pieces in a "no pressure zone", just for our own pleasure. I used to be a floral designer, and I think some of that came out in the piece. Fall is my favorite time of year. This piece encompasses so much pleasure and joy, I just can't bear to part with least yet anyway.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Sweet Dreams Beads

Now these are some sweet designs to dream about, that's for sure. Lisa DeCanio began beading in 2003. From her very first necklace, she knew this would fast become her passion and obsession. She lies to create pieces that are big and bold, and make a statement. The inspiration for her color palette and choice of materials is based in the idea of an old treasure chest full of glorious color, richness and discovery. I found these lovely designs on her Etsy store, Sweet Dreams Beads.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Artists/Crafters! Your thoughts about color....

I am putting out a call for your thoughts about color, and an image of your work to share with my readers. I am on a personal quest to find out what inspires and influences to colors we use in our creations. Some questions to consider"

  • Do you believe the region of the country you live in, or city vs. country, influences your chosen color palette?
  • Does your color palette change because off current color in fashion or media?
  • Are you challenged to find a color palette that defines you as an artist?
  • Are you challenged to constantly redefine your work with color?
  • Are the colors you chose to work with influenced by the type of media you work in?
  • How do you choose the colors you work with?
  • Is your color palette chosen based on personal taste, or your perception of your own self?
  • Do outside forces like music, politics, seasons, job environment, friendships etc. influence your color choices?
  • Is your choice of color completely random? A matter of whatever is available to work with at the time a project is begun?
  • Are your color choices formulaic, or based on spiritual meaning of color?
I want to know everything. Choose as many or as few of these aspects to talk about. There is no limit on length or brevity of your post. Please include an image of your work, and any links you would like to include. Your name will go into a drawing for a $75.00 custom piece of art jewelry made by me, just for you. The drawing will be February 1st, 2009. This date marks the one year anniversary of making my love and passion for making art jewelry a business. The aim here is to inspire each other, while looking inside ourselves to understand better why we make the choices we make in our art, and seeing more clearly what our own artistic voice is. If we know where we are coming from, we will know where we want to go. Please send your email to To see images of my work on the web, go to

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Sunrise at Ft. Riley

Well, after a wonderful evening, all night, and into morning, fabulous jewelry making extravaganza, which ended around 5am, I felt it best, as the awake and alert person in the group to follow the gal from Junction City home, so that we would all be sure she made it home safely. A little over an hour trip, we pulled into Denny's and had breakfast and coffee. She went home and I drove over toward Ft. Riley to get some sunrise pictures. Unfortunately, my batteries died after only a few pictures, so I went ahead and drove back to Topeka, watching the sun rise over the Flint Hills and cast beautiful long shadows across the landscape. Here are a few cool shots I got in a camp area near base.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Part 2: The role of emotion in the creative process

I received a comment from friend, fellow crafter, and writer, blogger, Jen of Scrapdash. Her thoughts and insight on this topic offered some different perspectives on this topic that I thought you, my readers, would find valuable. So, I am offering it as a seperate post. To see more photos of Jen's, link here to her Flickr photostream. Here is what Jen had to say in response to my previous post................................................................................................................................ I can relate to the woman in your example. When I was first married, my level of satisfaction in my marriage matched and then replaced what my natural means of expression had given me since the fifth grade. I didn't write for several years. And I didn't make this connection right away because I didn't see yet how I'd been writing chiefly out of a source of pain; I just knew I'd stopped writing...and that I didn't "need" to write. And yet I did need to on a fundamental level.

Or, rather, I needed to write differently but I didn't know how. Sometime before my 30th birthday I realized I didn't like using my writing (or my marriage for that matter) as an escape pod from old hurts. It struck me as immature. Despite all my formal training, however, I didn't know how to change the attitude through which I had been regarding the world. My default setup is melancholic. When that's all you've ever known, it's a funk tough to look beyond.

And then, ironically enough, I read a favorite novel I hadn't picked up since high school. It was like my eyes had been uncrossed and I could finally see beyond myself. I could see more than despair, certainly, but I also could see more than beauty. Both sadness and happiness are made up of stark truths hidden within miasmas of emotion. For some reason at that point in my life, this favorite old story I re-read was able to help me find the solid bits and parts of happiness. And I began to write about them.

Since then I've gone through another dry spell in which my pens might be better used in a game of darts on an acoustic tile ceiling. But I've been encouraged by what Kathleen Norris, a poet, observed about prairie grass. She calls it "a perfect metaphor for the creative process." During times of drought, the grass "seems to die all the way to the roots..." Yet "it's a question of being patient and having faith that the writing process isn't dead, but rather just going through some kind of transformation" because, referring once more to the grasslands, "the minute there's moisture, it just springs green."

I appreciate your practical advice about working on your art, how it can be work and what that work can look like. I've rarely journaled formally but I jot notes on scraps of paper. I'm trying to keep my eyes open and uncrossed, to "remain," as Kathleen Norris concluded, "at least alert enough to receive what the world is trying to give" me."

October 23, 2008 5:21 AM

Thanks Jen for this insightful contribution.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

The role of emotion in the creative process

This photo can be found Neshachan's Flickr photostream. It portrays sadness and depression.

Recently, I was reading a string on a craft blog basically supporting the view that in order to produce good art, one must be suffering or sad or depressed. When a person experiences loss or grief the mind fills with creative ideas and the need to express the emotional pain through art or craft. The person leading this discussion said that since she had found a wonderful man to be with her life had settled down and she was the happiest she has ever been. The problem is that now she is having trouble creating and coming up with ideas.

I think this view is an unhealthy one. To rely on drama or tragedy to provide a muse to create really is a cop out. Being an artist or crafter is something that you either are or aren't. You aren't going to create great art if you don't get in the studio and start working....on anything. That's right...anything. If you don't get in there and pick up the tools and start making something, nothing creative will have a chance to happen. Sometimes just starting will take us to places we never could have imagined. It is okay to give ourselves permission to be happy and celebrate joy in our work. We don't always have to express something dark and complicated. We don't always have to scream for the world to hear what we have to say. Happy can be just as deep as sad. Inspiration can be found in anything.

This glass sculpture by Dale Chihuly can be found on his website. This sculpture portrays fun, joy, and happiness.

Sometimes what we make when we think there is no muse can be so profound. Try committing to 10 minutes of activity in the studio. Let what you make be intuitive with no intentions and no conditions. Just make something. Maybe just do an exercise. For example, say you will make something only using blues. Or, maybe make something using only one tool or one material. Do something totally in the realm of play. Take time to play, and your work will become richer and more interesting. We are so blessed to have the gift of being able to work with our hands, creating something out of nothing. Even the things we make that never get sold or given away have purpose. Every piece we make leads us to the next piece, and the next. If we avoid the studio because the idea hasn't been delivered to your front door, you are missing opportunities. The idea will probably only be delivered if you are in the studio working, ready to receive it.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

The very finest dining in Topeka


515 SW Van Buren St. Topeka, Kansas 66603

Phone: 785.817.6052 Email:

Okay, this is how I discovered this fabulous place. I had decided if my exhibit and "meet and greet" at the Jewelry Box went well, I would go celebrate by having dinner at a place that had live music. Perfectly willing to drive to Lawrence or KC, I started my Google search for something fun. Great food was also a requirement, not just some dive with a house band. So as I was scrolling through various links, I found this link to a news story, a 49 News interview of Row House owner and head chef Greg Fox about Wheatstock. There is a clip of him performing really nice music that he had written himself. The key here is that he was a TOPEKAN. 49 news interview
So then, I started trying to find a performance schedule, hoping that he would be playing somewhere in Topeka, and that I could go have dinner and then go to hear him play. It would be a great evening. So, as I was scrolling through the search looking for times and dates, THAT is when I found Row House. I couldn't believe it. The website was telling me I could have everything I was looking for AND not have to leave Topeka. The site had a phone number and said to call for reservations, so I did. Thinking that the website had to be a mirage, I asked "Um, are you guys open tonight?" "Yes, we are." And I made a reservation for 8:30 for just myself. When I arrived a little before 8:30. I opened the door and Shawna comes right down the stairs and says, "Are you Dawn?", and introduces herself to me. She takes me into a quaint little room with about 10 other people dining. I had a cute little table with a candle and started with a nice glass of red wine. Looking at the menu of what appeared to be completely sumptuous choices, I decided to go with the option of having small portions of the entire listing of courses. I will list the menu at the bottom, after I have finished describing the experience.While I sipped my wine and took in the wonderful atmosphere, I noticed the fresh flowers and original artwork. This piece is an original by Justin Marable, entitled Abandoned But Interconnected. It was hanging above my table for me to enjoy. There were two others in the small room where I was dining. But after dinner, when Shawna gave me a tour of the whole house, I discovered there were several more. Enough in fact, that I suggested that they participate in First Friday Art Walk. There were also original works by two other very talented local artists. They had much more art displayed there than many of the galleries here in town. Not only that, but a great many photos showing Topeka's rich history and the story of Row House. Even the bathrooms had photos and artwork. All properly lit and thoughtfully displayed. Anyway, as I am taking in this first work of art, I am served a "starter", something wonderful that was a surprise, not on the menu. It was a little piece of crisp bread (cracker-like) and a lovely dollup each of a hummus and delicate cheese confection, with a little olive oil artfully framing the tasty centerpiece. So, this is how the evening started. Every plate that came to my table looked like a work of art, beautifully arranged to create a mouth watering aesthetic. Each course was a perfect combination of flavors and textures. I could taste every element of each of these compositions. The ingredients were so fresh. With every bite, I just couldn't believe I was experiencing food this way. Each course was special, and served at appropriate intervals so that I was neither rushed, nor ever waiting. I was ready for the next course just at the time it was brought to me. The desserts were sublime.After I had taken in my last bite of desset and last sip of coffee. Shawna took me on the tour of the house, as I previously mentioned. It is two stories of intimate rooms, each unique and of couse full of original art. She took me in the kitchen, where I got a chance to see where the creativity happens. Even greater, Row House has its own garden. They grow their ingredients right there. I think Shawna mentioned that they (the small Row House staff) do their own planting and tending of these garden areas. I had suspected that they bought from a local grower at least. The food was so noticeably fresh, I couldn't imagine otherwise. At this point I must mention the attentiveness of Shawna, my server, and of all of the other staff. They all conversed with me, and checked to make sure I was thoroughly pleased and taken care of. The chef who prepared my food, Michael Colpitts, actually served me a few of the courses and also checked on me several times throughout my stay. They are a wonderful team, working hard to see that every guest has a personal experience and the very best food possible. I was truly treated like family. I know this is a terribly long post, and I am sorry I didn't bring my camera so I could show you how beautiful each of the dishes was. But, please, please, please, go and experience this for yourself. You will be thanking me, and them for giving you the most wonderful dining experience you probably will ever have. Here is the lovely menu from last night in their words, "Last of summer tastes meet the falling leaves time of year. The salad was inspired by a coleslaw I had recently that rocked my boat. It was tangy, creamy, fresh and delicious. The Tomato soup deserved a spot on the menu this time of year. It was the house soup at Cibo, my restaurant in Nashville. The vegetarian should prove exciting and beautiful, and both entrees are taking Cabernet sauces in different ways. The Halibut gets a Butter, Cabernet, and cream sauce, and the beef is drizzled with vinaigrette made from a Cabernet Reduction and Balsamic Vinegar. Desserts are a bit off our usual track. Figs and Cornmeal cake. Dried Cherry Biscotti dipped in Chocolate, and Butterscotch Crème Brule, topped with candied almonds. " Greg Fox was not there last night, so I didn't get to hear the wonderful live music, but I will the next time I go. You can hear Greg Fox's music on You Tube. Here's the link. The photos in this post belong to Greg Fox, Justin Marable, and The Row House, Topeka, KS

Thursday, October 9, 2008

45 New Kaleidoscopes!

I can't help it. I just love this digital tool. I have plans for a productive use of the images. But for now, it's all in good fun! You can view the whole collection from the Gallery page on my website.

Shockingly Vintage!

So today I was driving along on my lunch hour and drove by this garage sale. Unsure that I had really seen what I saw, I knew this was going to be photo worthy. So, I went home and grabbed my camera and drove back over to the garage sale. And behold! The largest, most velvety, brightly colored, wreck causing vintage lamps I have ever seen. The even better part was that there were two of each and they were being sold as pairs. I know that they are hideous and all, but the retro-modern vintage furniture lover in me almost considered (is still considering) buying the chartreuse goldish green ones. You see, they have an extra feature that the red ones don't have, an internal glow! There is actually a light beam inside the green glass base as well. Incredible! As an extra bonus, I ran into a friend of mine who I worked with over a decade ago. Can that really be possible? He was the seller of these lamps which he says were given to him as a gift. (giggle, heeheehee!)

Daddy Cakes Birthday Surprise

Allison and the girls at Daddy Cakes made my birthday special by bringing me this sugary work of at the library where I work. The presentation was cute, the Daddy Cake absolutely adorable, and oh was it ever a piece of pumpkin heaven! It is their flavor of the month for October- Pumpkin Cheesecake. I think this must be my new favorite. I urge everyone to visit Daddy Cakes and try one of these. Thank you Allison for brightening my day.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

I talk about my art jewelry

Today's the day. The Library is the place. 10:00am-12:00 pm OR 1:00pm- 3:00 pm. I will be talking about art and craft, being in the trenches of my first year of business, what inspires my work, and what I have learned on the journey. Those who attend will receive a packet with a list of library books, websites and blogs, and information about art events around town. The presentation will be freeform, and people may ask questions as we go. We will have a great time. Come and join me! Jellyfish picture can be found on

Thursday, September 18, 2008

New Stuff

Well, I haven't shown any new work on the blog in a while. I have been very, very busy. You see, I applied to four fall shows this year and was accepted in all four. I very naively committed to do all four shows. I didn't realize the implications of what this was going to do to my after(work)life. The end of sleep as I once knew it. Here are two new pieces that are out on loan for a showing of beautiful designer, one of a kind, leather and suede couture.
The black and grey piece is entitled Twilight. I have not titled the blue/green piece yet.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Tall Dave in the media Friday

For those of you who don't know Dave, he is one of my very closest friends. Dave lives in Milwaukee and we dated for a while. This is a picture from back then, when he was visiting me in Kansas. I am 6 feet tall, and Dave is 7 foot 4 inches tall.
Dave is visiting KC this weekend with the Milwaukee Tall Club, which is joining forces with the Kansas City Skyliners to have a fun weekend gathering. Tall clubs promote awareness of the issues and challenges of being very tall, and also of genetic disorders which are characterized by tallness. In my past involvement with the Milwaukee Tall Club, they have raised money through auctions and events to support research of Marfan Syndrome. There are many identifiable characteristics of Marfan Syndrome. But the problem is most people have never heard of it.
There have been many advances in surgical technology and now a promising new drug that can be given to younger Marfan Patients. Please take the time to visit and learn about this potentially deady genetic disorder.
Dave will be interviewed and broadcast Friday. These are the times and channels:
WDAF Fox 4 at 8:20 a.m.
KMBC-TV the local ABC channel at 5:00, 6:00 and 10:00 p.m on Friday evening.
Please tune in. He will be talking about Marfan. For the record, Dave does not have Marfan, but a similar connective tissue disorder.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Remember this picture?

Yes, that's right. It's the monkey bread again. Way back when I first started this blog, I emphatically told you guys that I would PAY good money if someone would make one of these things for me from scratch (no corner cutting). Well no one responded, so I felt the need to post on this again. I WANT IT! My birthday is coming up pretty soon, so PLEASE people, somebody please make me a dome of monkey bread. I will never forget your kindness and effort. This picture and the recipe with instructions can be found at Bake and Shake.