Monday, June 27, 2011

Come and See

ser-en-dip-i-ty |ˌserənˈdipitē|
the occurrence and development of events by chance in a happy or beneficial way:  
a fortunate stroke of serendipity | a series of small serendipities.

When you work in art and design, refueling is a vital part of reconnecting with good ideas and new inspiration.  I have discovered over the years that attending art inspired events such as the Farm Chicks Show in Spokane can open you up to the chance to discover new ideas about design, color, inspiration, and art. 
Home is with You
Such is the moment I walked into illustrator and artist, Cori Dantini's booth at the show (a fortunate stroke of serendipity indeed).  I fell head over heals in love with her work.  I love everything about it; from the fine detail pen work, to the vintage paper foundations as well as her brilliant use of white paint that makes every image pop.

Love it.  Love it.  Love it.

Every time I look at one of the prints I purchased I see another detail I never noticed before.  Each piece has a title and really, that was half the fun looking for a title that spoke to me or for the person I was going to give it to.

The Grand Reach
It was hard to choose what to purchase.
I knew an original was out of the question considering what I had already spent getting to the show and had already purchased that morning.  So I settled for a print, which in the end, wasn't really settling at all since I got exactly what I wanted and was able to purchase more than one (okay, four to be exact).
The Secret to Happiness
If you are interested in seeing more of Cori's art or purchasing some ( I use the word "some" because it is almost impossible to buy only one of her prints) she has an Etsy shop here(My apologies girls...Cori shop is not open until July 10 due to her being away at 2 art fairs in Montana and Denver)

Cori also sells the white mats that fit her prints here.  If you purchase a mat she will add the title and signature.  It just finishes it off and you will be ready to pop it into a 12 x 12" or 11 x 14" frame.
 Here is the same print in a frame I picked up from Target for $12.99.  
It has found a home on a wall in my bedroom.  Just a quite little reminder to my husband.

Here are two of the other pieces I purchased at the show:
What holds you up (a gift for a new mother)
The Gatherer (this one spoke to me - for obvious reasons)
There is also an interesting short article on Cori's working life as an illustrator as well as more examples of her artwork on the web site "Do What You Love".
You can read it here.

ps) if you buy one of Cori's prints, I would love to know which one you get!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Lucky Duck

I love it when I come across a good sale and purchase items to have on hand for future gifting.  It's so nice when I need a quick gift and I'm actually prepared. 

And since this place....
is having their semi-annual sale I thought an easy yet crafty gift idea would be fun to share.

I originally did this project when I  was planning a "sisters" retreat and wanted to have something cute sitting on their bed when they arrived (....I know, the things we do!).  But I also think it could be used for lots of different occasions, and who doesn't love something designed just for them and/or seeing their name in print.  I started by purchasing an assortment of  toiletries.   Then I got to work making new personalized labels for each of the items.   All the labels had to do with the "sisters" theme.

This is really easy, especially after you have formatted the labels.  Once you have done that just save it and use the basic template for whatever label you want to create.

Labels for bottles
1.  The paper to print the labels on needs be slightly heavier than standard paper but not a heavy cardstock.  I found that a manilla folder worked great (and of course it was within arms reach).  Since these will be run these through the printer cut 2 pieces per folder at 8 1/2 x 11"
2. I painted these pieces with walnut ink for a specific look.  You can use Distress Stain, paint or whatever to create the look you want.  
3.  Measure the original labels on the toiletries then format your labels to size using appropriate fonts and colors.  It is easy to do, the hardest part is picking the fonts!

Since this was about sisters I made a long list of synonyms to use on the label.
 It's all about the fonts....choose wisely, it makes such a difference in the look and feel of the label.
4.  Print out your labels and cut to size.  Practice on plain white paper to get it just right before printing on your walnut inked paper.  Adhere to bottle.

Bar Soap Label Wrap
1.  Measure the depth, width and length of the soap.  Using these measurements cut chipboard to length then score the chipboard so that it creates a little box to wrap around the soap.

 2.  Format your label, print and cut to size.  Stitch label to the chipboard wrap.

3.  Punch holes in chipboard wrap and lace ribbon or twill through holes and tie.

 Fabric labels
 1.  To print on fabric, cut freezer paper and fabric to 8 1/2 x 11.  Iron the shiny side of freezer paper to fabric.  If edges of fabric aren't completely adhered to freezer paper you might need to tape down edges. Or, you can also purchase printable fabric at your fabric store.
2.  Format the fabric labels to size.
3.  Test on plain paper.  When perfect, run fabric/freezer paper through printer so label prints on fabric.
4.  Cut to size - fray edges of fabric.  For fabric patches stitch to muslin bag with primitive stitches.

That's it....the hardest thing is formatting the labels.  Once that is done save them on your computer for future gifts and adjust labels for that occasion.....enjoy!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

bibliophile - ˈbiblēəˌfīl| noun a person who collects or has a great love of books.

Have we ever mentioned that we love old books.  They are rich in color, print and graphics.  We love the yellowed imperfect pages as much as an interesting book spine.

Anthropologie went through a period that they showed their love of books through their inspirational displays.

      We have used them for display in the 7g booth over and over again. 
We use them for risers to get the featured item on display to just the right height.  

We have used them open to display items....

and we have used them closed, with the display on the cover.  

I thought I would share a fun book project that is quick and easy using a book as a frame for fun photo.  

You will need:
1.  Smaller size photo
2.  old hardback book
3.  glass from a dollar store frame - size will depend on your book and size of photo
4.  paper, 7g tissue, some ribbon and embellishments
5.  7g metal corners

Find an old book that goes with the picture that you have chosen.  The book shown above is about travel and matched the vintage photo.  
On the book below, I have a grandson named Will and was lucky enough to find this book....yep, that is the actual title of the book!....and this photo was perfect.

You will need glass from a cheap frame that is slightly larger than your photo.  Glue metal corners to the glass.

You can choose to cover the front of the book with paper or leave plain so that you can see the title of the book.  On the book below I covered with 7gypsies tissue the I decoupaged directly to the cover (shown is one of the old tissues, but they have some lovely new styles that are now available).  Once covered I embellished with paper, twill, ribbon and a few decorative metal pieces.  

The decoupaged tissue, paper, ribbon and twill wrap around the edges of the book, but only go to the edge of the spine.  The black ribbon tied around the cover was to cover that edge.

After the cover is finished you are ready to attach the glass to go over the photo.  I used 7gypsies 6" elastics.  Use an awl to make the holes for the elastic.  Insert elastic with the barbed ends and turn the barbs so the ends don't come back through hole.  You want the elastic to hold the glass snugly to the book cover so if necessary pull the elastic taunt from inside the cover and knot the end.

The "Power of Will" book, after I attached the glass with the elastics, I simple slipped the ribbon under the glass and around the book to tie the book closed.  

That's's ready to set on a shelf....easy and cheap!

While Paula and I were in Anthropologie this week we discovered two books showing ways to use and recycle old books.  Both had some clever ideas that we think you might enjoy. 
You can check them out on Amazon (or Anthropologie).

Monday, June 20, 2011

Lucky Winner

Good Morning Everyone! 
Remember this?

Well, we have drawn a name, spun the wheel, rolled the dice...okay, we really clicked the mouse.

and it looks like Miss Angie T is our Lucky Winner, 
Angie T said...
This kit looks fabulous! I've had a spinner that's been sitting empty for years! *hanging head in shame* Thanks for the giveaway! June 17, 2011 3:17 PM

 Angie, will you email us at to let us know your shipping address?

Thanks to all who entered to win, we really appreciate your support for our little blog and our kits!
We'll be back tomorrow with a great post about books, books, and more books, you won't want to miss it!  See you then!
paula and deb

Friday, June 17, 2011

June Kit

The spinner kit is $59 plus shipping.
You can find more information here in our Etsy shop.

You will need the following items to complete this kit. 
decorative edge scissors
glue stick
liquid glue
tape runner
small hole punch - long reach
black ink pad

   colored pencils
   Distress Stickles - Rock Candy

And just to say thanks for your support we are having a BIG give away!  All you need to do is leave a comment to win.  You have until midnight on Sunday, June 19th to be included in the give away.  We will post the LUCKY winner's name on Monday morning.
Good Luck All!
Vintage papers, cards, labels, tickets, tags
Collage Tissue
Medium Portfolio
Gaffer tape
Book Bra
Black book board pack
small metal frames
6 rolls paper tape
3 Petit Carnet books
Ringed journal
2 ThermOweb Super Stick glue
3 paper packs from K & Co.
6 colors Distress Stain
6 different colors May Arts ribbon
(does not include my suitcase though)

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Great Weekend...

We had a wonderful time at Scrap Happy Sisters in Arizona this weekend.  We taught both the Abundance Portfolio class and the My Ten mini drawer class.  By the end of the day Paula and I were pooped but it was still a great day.  

Here we are hard at work during the mini drawer class.

Thanks ladies, for all the fun!

Just a little reminder....
Late this week we will be putting the NEW June kit up in our Etsy store.  If you would like to pre-order a kit you can still do that by emailing us.  Just click on the postcard/email icon.  
Here is a sneak peak of that project kit that we shared a couple of weeks ago.  We will post more on Friday.....see you then!

Friday, June 10, 2011

FArM CHicKs sHoW

So much to post about the show (there are plenty of other blogs talking about it too).  
The bottom line...
1.  good junk
2.  reasonable prices
3.  totally inspiring
would I spend the money to go back? you bet!

The smartest thing we did was get in on the $20 early entry tickets.  There were a limited amount sold (maybe 300) and that got us a great parking space (to dump our treasures throughout the day) and 1 hour in the show with a very limited amount of people.  We arrived at the show at 7:45am for a 9:00 entry.  The photo below shows how close we were to the front of the line, maybe 30 people?
Standing in line was actually fun because we talked to everyone around us including these super nice ladies from Southern Ca.  We met them the day before when we were out shopping (we just kept running into them at the same stores) then ended up standing in line by them.  Eloise (on the right) was so nice to give us tips on some good booths to start with. Thanks Eloise!

We saw LOTS of cowboy boots with skirts and dresses, fun aprons and fabulous jewelry.  We also saw all the Farm Chick celebrities that were in the house to sign books/magazines during the event.  Jenny Doh with her new book, Signature Styles.  The fabulous Heather Bullard and Ki Nassauer with their magazine Flea Market Style.

Once inside the building we were free to roam the 4 halls.  This picture is of the main entrance hall.

My purchase at the Silver Suitcase (as if I hadn't bought enough from them the day before!)
yes, that's my thumb in the picture...did they move the camera on the new iPhone 4?  I never had this giant thumb with my iPhone 3.

Piles and piles of vintage table cloths

Cowboy boots anyone?
Love this signage...Ormolulu
Seabold Vintage Market was the most darling booth.  The red cross theme carried throughout. 
oh, my gosh, there's my thumb again!
And just across the way were these lovely old dressers.  This one was sold.
Loved this idea of the faux wedding cake.  
Wouldn't this make a great center piece for a bridal shower?

Look what they did with this old car...
Here is the fabulous Sande Krieger in the back of the car! 

I bought one of these...a big letter C.

This was quite a haul!

We saw our friends Lisa and Michelle from Scrappin Girlfriends in Twin Falls, Idaho
as well as our crazy but super fun friend, Lori Wilson-Bunda from The Scrap Yard in Calgary
Farm Chicks even had a Man-Cave with 3 big screen TVs and comfortable seating for about 20 or so people.  It was great if you needed a break or just to meet up with someone.  I personally watched a little Forrest Gump while I was waiting in there.
Thought I would leave you with this great old car that was parked next to us in the parking lot.  We all wanted out picture taken in it!

This blog also has some great Farm Chicks pictures (probably NOT taken with their iPhone because there is no thumb in any of the pictures).