Monday, April 11, 2016

Round Top Treasures in my Rearview mirror

At Marburger Farms

We make reservations..we put it on our calendars...we look forward to it... we count down the days... we make lists, plans and it seems that it takes FOREVER to get here and then in a blink of an's over, gone, done, in the history books and then..... we make reservations...we put it on the calendar and then the WAIT begins......This is not the theme to the never ending story but it is the story of Antiques week which happens twice a year in Round Top Texas and the surrounding small communities and cities that display their wares of antique, vintage, retro and new. WE LOVE IT! We have been going since 2000 and I feel like it is home for 12 days of every year- 6 in the Fall and 6 in the Spring.  I love this place so much that yes, I looked at the window of the local  Round Top Realtor where there were flyers on the window and thought (I actually said to Presleigh)- "We might should look into  that 4 bdrm, 3 bath on 7 acres so when we come down, we would have our own place."  Ok, so 12 days does not make a majority of our time here but the anticipation, the joy, the backroads, the friendships, the people, the treasures, the restaurants and  the traditions  we have continued since we started -all feel like HOME.

This Spring, we started on our journey...Tuesday morning is Chik-Fil-A and then on the road through South Dallas Highways to just before Waco where we make our first stop along the way to Ross Antique Mall.  It's right on the would be a crime not to of course, we stop.

Right off the I-35

After searching for treasures up and down the aisles of all different booths and vendor, we make our purchases and head back down the highway to Rudy's in Waco for lunch and then just around the corner is La Salle Antique Mall for another round of treasure hunting.  After La Salle, it's onto HWY 77 which gets us out of the mainstays and onto the country 4 lane highways that feel like a Sunday drive in the middle of the week.  Pastures, Fields and small towns are in full view and all of life begins to slow, there's breathing space, there's dreaming space....For the rest of the week, it's revisiting the past, refreshing the spirit and refocusing on the possibilities.  It's seeing memories and special times as we walk through the fields- saying "Oh my grandmother had one of these...Isn't this an old_______? Why did they use those?"  It's treasuring the past and being grateful for the present.  It's putting fresh purposes onto worn-out, out-dated and the cast aways.

A bit overcast but look at road...we are the only ones
on it!!

I wish I would take more pictures but I get lost in the moments, or perhaps I'm in the moment that a smart phone doesn't seem to fit in to the view.  But I did manage to take a few and with Presleigh's pictures also, you just might see why this is HOME (for at least a few days of every year) ...And for now, marked on  September 27th of our calendars, we anticipate, we make lists and we plan....and we wait...

Here are a few more pictures of our trip...
New - old stationery that has never been used....

The best steak house...we eat there twice!!

A wonderful friendship 

Perfect spot for a picture

A few of our treasures....

BEST KOLACHES EVER!! We eat there every
morning!  They actually know our order!

Breathing Space....

Wish I could sit under that tree with a good book...

A carefree day with the cows

Love the Buntings and the Coca Cola sign...

The Coffee Bug- best ICED Coffee!

Treasured Classics

Cows next to fields....

Brick oven Pizza at Marburger Farms

Dreaming Space

Until next time, Hope you'll find a little breathing space and dreaming space right where you are...

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Florida, Frank Sinatra, the Flu and a few favorite projects

Spring Break was a wonderful respite as we traveled to  Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida (one of my all time favorite places).  This area of Florida holds so many wonderful memories for me, starting as a young child when my grandparents lived within minutes of where we currently stay.  I loved visiting them, for oh so many reasons, and of course, the beach was one of those reasons.  

Years ago (16 years to be precise), I convinced my husband to go to Ponte Vedra ...for those of you who know we live in Texas - everyone goes to Destin, the gulf....
Well, we go a little further to the Atlantic. 

Ponte Vedra Beach is the home of the PGA Tour, The Players Championship (PGA golf tournament) and now is home to our son, Morgan, who works for PGA Tour, Entertainment.   Every June, we become Texas Floridians and soak in the sun, the sand, the shells, the water and the waves.

So for us, March felt like June, so when we came home after only 8 days away, for  a moment we 
thought our summer was half over.  To our wonderful realization, Summer hasn't even begun!!

We came home and quickly turned our home into 
"An Evening at the Sands"- a Seriously Sinatra Birthday party for our youngest!
She loves Ol' Blue Eyes ( and so do I).  Our evening included the gaming table, 
the dining table and a photo shoot with fedoras and a life-size Frank Sinatra (yes, they make one and of course, amazon sells it!).

Frank's Favorite candy and of course The Rat Pack 

Shortly after the party, the Flu came calling and I answered is lingering but I am on the mend.  I haven't been sick for so long that I forgot how it can zap not only my energy, but also my creativity.  

So with all that said, I have a few favorite projects to share with you from the ICE Resin® blog featuring my Art Journal "Hope" and a few from the Studio.
Love this Heart!

Tag Art inspired by Finnabair

The start of a custom order of Bird and Bead charms

Until next time, find a little respite, put on Sinatra and dream of your favorite place....

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

An Artist's View - my story in Bella Crafts Premium Online Publication

I wanted to share with y'all a great online publication that has incredible creativity and inspiration with each project.  It is published by several of my friends who I had the pleasure of working with last September in Minnesota at the Bella Crafts Connection.  {Mark your calendar, it is happening again this year September 16th-18th at the Mall of America.}

Last month Ann Butler asked if I would like to be the Artist spotlight for this upcoming issue.  Thanking her for the opportunity, I agreed.....and then I thought.....what will I say? what questions will she ask?.....Knowing Ann, the questions were easy and also thought provoking - such as did I know I wanted to be an artist or did it just happen?  For me, the word artist means so many things to different people - we think of Van Gogh, Renoir, Monet and more or we think --I could never create anything....What I love about creativity is that we all have it...Let me say that again - WE all have IT!!
Some have at the gift of painting, of sculpting, of drawing while others have the eye for vision, design and color and yet still some of us have the gift of creating friendships, creatively solving problems, teaching in a creative fashion that the lessons come to life.

For me, I love living a creative, joy-filled life and  it is natural to create something everyday.  Whether with my hands, my head or my heart, Creativity finds it's way into the dailyness of today,  with an opportunity to inspire and bless others.  This is what I hope for - that in the Art Avenues I travel, that I bring a little bit of the Creator and his beauty into your life.

Until next time,  I hope inspiration finds you and add a little art into your day.

Bella Crafts Quarterly 

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Paste Paper Tag with ICE Resin® casting made in Art-filled Snippet Moments in the Studio

Snippets of Time is what I call my time in the Studio- I take a little moment here and there, I steal away while the biscuits are in the oven, as I take out the trash there is always a little detour to the studio...I create in spurts, moments,'s fun and frustrating at the same time.  Oh, of course there are days when I can disappear into paper, paints, design and delight.  But on the more common  Snippet days, my projects evolve over several days and what I had envisioned at the beginning takes on new directions each time I go into the studio.  I learned when  my children were small that snippets of time might be all I would be given and to make the most of that moment - to crochet a row or two, to add a little paint to paper, to continue on an earlier project.

Today, I want to share with you a paste paper tag that is a snippet project.  I love these tags  because I can work on them a little at a time and then all at once it comes together.  In this watercolor paper tag, I used twinkling H2O's (a hardpan watercolor cake with beautiful bits of mica powders and shimmers), Acrylic paints, distress inks, rub-ons, stamps and even gauze fabric.  Embellished with Ribbons, pearls and wire, the piece de resistance is my ICE Resin® cast - a Relic inspired milagro that has been painted with Mica Powder and inks.  Using ICE Resin® in casting found objects is one of my most favorite possibilities.  I can make one or a hundred of my castings, add patina, paints and foils.  This tag is a wonderful blend of all things lovely.
the beginnings 

close up of the twinkling H2O's

Playing with placement

One of my favorite sayings...It is so true.

For me, as a collage artist, I love snippet moments - To me they are little collages being created as I work on the various elements of the project.  I have learned to EMBRACE all artful moments and to create for those few moments as if I had all day- And then when my piece whether it be jewelry, paper arts or fabric, I know that it was worth every minute of each day as I put my heart in to each part of the process.
The ICE Resin® casting of the milagro

Until next time, I hope you will find a few art-filled snippet  moments

Where I will be teaching this Spring

February 27th  - Sparks Studio featuring ICE Resin®
March 15th  Sparks Studio working with ICED Enamel™
March 19th - Resurrected Designs - an All day workshop featuring ICE Resin® and creating jewelry pieces

April 9th - Resurrected Designs - BOHO inspired hand knotted pearl and button wrap bracelet
April 16th - Saturday in the Studio - a creative afternoon at My Art Studio - details soon 

Looking Ahead for the fall - still putting all the dates on the schedule 

September 16th- 18th Bella Crafts Connections in Minnesota

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

CHA - The Craft and Hobby Association's MEGA Conference and Trade Show....a little piece of Heaven here on earth

Here's an excerpt from my post on the ICE Resin® Blog....

OH MY STARS!!! is the perfect expression (that we use quite often here in Texas- along with y’all and fixin to…) to describe CHA, the Craft and Hobby Association’s Trade only show. – For me it was the Creative Heaven for Artists!! I first heard about CHA in the early 90’s when Carol Duval, a wonderful crafter and TV personality would go and show us through video all the great new inspirations and products that would be coming to our local craft stores in the coming months.  As I sat there glued to the TV, I watched Carol walk the showroom floor and talk with all of the people, the celebrities (for me) and show all the new products.  The creativity was so evident and everyone was sharing ideas, demoing new techniques and products!  It seemed to be heaven on earth…and I wanted to go.

I made it!!!
Fast-forward to January 8th, I walked into the Anaheim Convention Center and picked up my nametag and my info packet to attend the CHA MEGA Conference and Trade Show.   It was the beginning of a dream come true…You can read more here

The Anaheim Convention Center

For me it was truly a dream come true.  Getting to see first hand the new products that will be available to stores for us, the loyal artisans and crafters I could see the time, the talent and the research that goes into new lines, new products, new tools.  It was truly inspiring and it also helped me appreciate all of the details that create a product that we will use time and time again. 

Some of my favorite new products are the new ICE Resin® foils and tints that will be added to work with our art and jewelry projects.  There is a new weaving tool designed for bangles,.The creator is from Australia or England (Her accent was amazing) and she was the most energetic and happy person. The tool uses everything from wire to fabric to even pantyhose!!!  Now I know what to do with all of those pairs that I no longer wear!!!  It won't be out until March/April but I will be the first one to get it and then share the process with y'all.  There was a beautiful company out of London that carried the most beautiful sewing pattern and fabric and lace as well.  All from Europe and from small farming communities who create the fabric/lace.  LOVE THAT!!  

There was a beautiful French stamp company called Carabelle.  C'est Magnifique!!!  I will try to order some of there large home decor stamps through a few of my connections across the pond!

I think for me the most incredible element to CHA was that all were there to inspire, teach and encourage the creativity in all of us!  From the big names I met to those that walked the aisles with me, it seemed as if we were one big happy family.... as they say those that create together, stay together.  Below are a few pictures of the workshops I helped with and learned from these amazing teachers.  Also a few pictures of a few of my friends while at CHA - I did forget to take pictures as I was trying to live in the moment - I would think later "Oh I should have taken more pictures" but there is always next year!!!1
Taking Classes from John Peterson - Amazingly
talented and he's my friend!!!

John and us girls....

Assisting Jen Cushman in her workshop
She is so gifted!!!

The students are learning!!

Playing with ICE Resin®
Eating Cake at PLAID®

My two favorite Susans - Susan Lenart Kazmer
and Susan Walls

Dinner with SLK, Sandra Evertson and Debby Anderson

I believe that whether you hold a paint brush or a child's hand, whether you mend a garment or a broken heart, whether you glue to hold paper or perhaps you are the glue that holds your family together - you and I are creating everyday.  CHA provides products and inspiration for us to use.  You provide the purpose in which to create a life that is filled with love and he{art}

Until next time,  I hope you find time to create everyday!!!