Monday, January 31, 2011

The art of losing isn't hard to master.


I found a surprise package from my mom waiting for me on Saturday. I opened it to find an old pair of pointe shoes from when I was a dancer, some photos, a necklace, and a men's dress shirt. My first instinct was to pick up the phone and find out what was going on, but I was afraid to ask. You see, I knew this meant my mom was rooting through closets and getting rid of stuff, and she has a hard time judging what one should give away and what one should keep. For example, last year she tried to give away my brother's valuable baseball card collection (without asking him first) to a three-year-old boy. Luckily, my sister was there to intervene. But my mom did succeed, just a few days later, in giving away a piano. A piano. So I'm a little hesitant to find out which personal treasures of my past she's arbitrarily decided to throw out or donate.


In other news, the snow is starting to melt. My boyfriend and I met several woeful snowmen on our walk yesterday whose faces had melted into long-drawn expressions.

This is how it looks out my window right now. I love to gaze out our large windows and often take photos. I wonder if my neighbors think I'm spying on them or on a stakeout. I'd probably be good at that.


(post title from "One Art" by Elizabeth Bishop)

Treasury Time

To see the full treasury and get links to all of these pretty shops click here. Also, this will probably be the last treasury I post here for a while. I will continue to feature etsy artists and vintage sellers on this blog, but in a slightly different format.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Silver Lining

I thought I'd show a couple of handmade pieces of jewelry I wear often. They are both delicate, beautiful, and easy to layer with other pieces or wear alone. The first is the silver dots necklace from Elizabeth Rosas, and the second is the twig ring from Colby June.








Please ignore the fact that I can't be bothered to brush my hair or make the bed. Hope everyone has a magical weekend! Any creative projects or fun outings planned?

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Girls, Girls, Girls!

I'm sure most of you know illustrator and photographer Kristina of the wonderful blog Krisatomic, but you may not know that she opened an online shop two months ago to sell her original paintings and prints. I've admired her work for a while now, especially her use of color and pattern. I'm particularly fond of the portraits of girls she has in her shop right now. They remind me of yearbook photos, you know, if your school was filled with awesomely quirky and stylish girls.






Monday, January 24, 2011

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Spring Daisy

Yesterday, the sun peeked out from behind the clouds, and the temperature warmed up to 50 degrees. It was an early glimpse of spring and made me want to leave my hibernation den, if only briefly. Sadly, the warm weather didn't last; it's supposed to snow tonight. But the balmy afternoon sparked a creative burst, and I felt like making some spring flowers. Here's the first daisy I completed, which I listed in my shop a little while ago.



I'm definitely not an outdoorsy person, but I do love to go to parks and walk around the city in the spring, allergies be damned. What do you like to do when the weather turns warm?

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Collage

I realized I forgot to post any collages for December. Whoops. Here are two collages full of things that are inspiring me right now: handmade birds and birdhouse decorations, bringing nature inside, folksy or rustic decor; also colorful stripes, rich shades of plum, magenta, purple, and pink, and woolly textures.




What's inspiring you right now?

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

In the Still of the Night

Last night, I couldn't sleep, and the power kept flickering on and off due to an ice storm. So I wandered over to the bookcase, grabbed a few art books at random and curled up in a chair with a stack of books and a package of Tim Tams. It's been a while since I flipped through my art books without agenda, stopping when something interests me, and really looked at the art, you know? Here are a few highlights from my late-night "gallery tour":













Saturday, January 15, 2011

Treasury Time

To see the full treasury and get links to all of these luminous shops click here.

Friday, January 14, 2011

A good traveler has no fixed plans, and is not intent on arriving.

I got a surprise in the mail a couple of days ago, a wayward Christmas card from the amazingly talented Ren. I'd heard from friends and etsy sellers that international shipping was especially slow this past Christmas season, so I guess it's no wonder it took a while for this little guy to travel all the way from Singapore! Ren made the entire card by hand with her own drawings, and it's so cute I had to share it with you guys.







How awesome is the pop-up message inside?

Ren has just arrived in LA for a six-month-long internship. [Ren, if you are reading this, good luck!!!]

To see more of Ren's work, check out her portfolio here.

*Philosophical post title courtesy of Taoist Lao-Tzu.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Oscar and Pam



Courtney, owner of etsy shop Bony Pony, bought one of my Oscar brooches recently and sent these photos of her French bulldog Pam posing with Oscar. Could these pics be any cuter? She also uploaded an adorable photo of her wearing the brooch in her feedback. It feels great to know something you worked hard on has found its way to a good home.

Check out Courtney's shop for some really cool and unique vintage finds as well as her own creations and crafty upcycled goods.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Look up, if you like me.


I was feeling a bit under the weather last weekend, so I made some paper animals to cheer myself up.


Some fun mail arrived to distract me briefly from my misery, including a letter from an old friend in California. She always makes her own envelopes out of recyled magazines or paper. Pretty.


My boyfriend was nice enough to walk to the store to get essentials, like chocolate and kleenex, and then we watched lots of bad television and Netflix. I'm now addicted to the British show Skins, though I'm not proud of it. On a related note, I can't see how the American version (debuting soon on MTV) will be anything less than horrible, which means it will probably be a huge hit - haha.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Treasury Time

To see the full treasury and get links to all of these charming shops click here.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

On Exploring

"An artist is an explorer. He has to begin by self-discovery and by observation of his own procedure. After that he must not feel under any constraint." - Henri Matisse


Matisse is talking about creative process, and certainly many artists have echoed the same idea (that finding your own style takes time and exploration, and that the artist, not the curator or critic, decides what art is, what it should look like and how it should be made).

But I wanted to post this quote here because it's really applicable to all areas of life. We all must do a little exploring, both of our hearts and minds and of the outside world, before we can really know what it is we're meant to do and how we're meant to do it.

I've also been thinking a lot about constraints lately, both the outside obstacles we face in life and the self-imposed constraints that hold us back. We all have that little voice that says "I can't" or "I shouldn't." That voice usually gets louder with age as responsibilities increase and our actions weigh heavier on those around us. But I'm a firm believer that each day we have a new opportunity, and it's never too late. Instead of letting fear or your inner critic dictate your choices, try saying "What if?"..."What if I did it anyway?"

Monday, January 3, 2011

2011 Here I Come!

It's a new year and a fresh start, the perfect time to think about what you'd like to change about your life and what you'd like to accomplish. I'm not one to make strict resolutions, but I am a compulsive list maker at heart, and I just can't resist the opportunity. So here's my list for 2011:

1. I'd like to draw more, paint more, make more period. In the past, I've definitely let my day job, school, and other obligations get in the way of creating things, and I'm determined not to repeat this pattern in 2011. Perhaps I'll do a create-a-thing-a-day for one month project, as many others have done and blog about it here to hold myself accountable.

2. Along the same theme, I'd like to expand my Etsy shop with more items, maybe add some artwork. I'd also like to promote my shop more on other sites.

3. I want to keep making this blog better, creating thoughtful posts and sharing more of my own work. On a related note, I'm looking at new cameras so that I can take better photos for this blog as well as my shop.

4. I'm going to try to spend more time with friends and family. Most of my oldest friends and all of my family live in other cities, and it's too easy to find excuses not to travel to see them (lack of money, time, etc.). I also can be a bit of a hermit and neglect my friends who live five minutes away...a bad habit.

5. My last goal is to take better care of myself in general. I tend to be my own worst critic, in every aspect of life, and it can really be paralyzing for a creative person. I need to be a little easier on myself.

So that's it. I'm keeping it simple this year. I think 2011 is going to be really good. I'm wishing you all lots of joy, peace, and prosperity! 

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