Category Archives: Crafting

Inspired: Studio Visit with Amy Olson

Hello there! How are you all? Hope you enjoyed the weekend. Portland is rocking some serious sunshine and I’m soaking it up. Me and my cankles…yes, third trimester swelling has begun. Oh joy! Only five more weeks to go – so excited to meet my little girl!

Anyway, today I wanted to share with you a little behind the scenes peek into the studio of Amy Olson Jewelry. I don’t know about you but I love seeing where people create. There is an intimacy and beauty to witness where creativity, inspiration and vision come together for an artist. To see their dreams become reality…

Lucky for me, Amy is a dear friend so getting backstage access to her jewel filled studio was no problem.

Filled with natural light, the white washed walls play backdrop to an eclectic treasure trove of jewels, bits of gold and silver, vintage artifacts and of course all of Amy’s tools.

I must admit…it was hard to keep my paws off all these dazzling bits of loveliness. Like a little kid, I was tempted to play with all the beads, chains and gemstones. Who could blame me?

Amy’s beautiful apartment relates to her jewelry and her favorite hues and textures can be seen through out her sweet home.

So gorgeous right? Feminine, delicate, nostalgic and refined…these are the words that come to mind when I think about Amy and her precious creations.  She truly designs unique and authentic jewelry that reflect her aesthetics. Each piece is hand crafted with such care and detail! Be sure to check out her Etsy store here.

Thanks Amy for letting me into your studio! Keep creating girl!

Hope you enjoyed that little tour…do you have a place in your home where you create?

xo,

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Filed under Art, Crafting, Etsy, fashion, Home, photography, Stories, studio visit

Featured in Somerset Apprentice!

With all the excitement about my upcoming trip to Paris, I totally forgot that the new Somerset Apprentice was coming out – the one in which I’m actually published! Eeek! I think I may have squealed out loud when this arrived in my mailbox yesterday…

I’ve been in the local newspaper but this took it to a whole new level! I adore Somerset magazines…to be in one is a dream! It felt so strange to open this issue up and see my name and artwork! Crazy!

It was fun writing the article and remembering my process.

This was a simple mixed media collage that I did two years ago! (Here is the original post about it.)  When Somerset contacted me about publishing it, I almost fell off my chair. It just goes to show the power of a blog…you never know who might be reading it! So share your passions and gifts with the world!

I am feeling like a very, very blessed girl these days. I am grateful. Thank you all for your kind words and encouragement.

Have a wonderful weekend.

xo,

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My sweet Valentine

Hi there! Hope everyone enjoyed Valentine’s day. We had a lovely evening! I wanted to share the shots I took of Grace before she headed to school yesterday. She was so excited to be in her party dress and couldn’t wait to hand out the little Valentine’s we had made for her class…

xo,

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Filed under Crafting, family, holiday, photography

Creatively Made: Mixed Media Portrait

Hi all! Been super busy with life and trying to fit in time to create too! A tricky balance, that frequently required late night sessions making a healthy mess of paint, paper, and glue in my studio. I have finally completed another project from the Creatively Made  e-course and I’m pretty pleased with the outcome. I have to admit, I am very, very rusty with my acrylic paints. Several times, I had to put down this piece and walk away frustrated. I would hang the unfinished canvas on the wall next to my desk and periodically gaze at it…looking for answers. They came…but it took time.

This project started the same as the others but this time, incorporating more color. Using a mix of vintage papers and scrapbook paper, I created the background, unifying it with layers of paint.

It was funny painting late into the night, listening to music and feeling my little baby kick inside me, almost encouraging me to keep going. I have started calling her my “Art Baby”. I haven’t painted in over ten years and somehow, I feel like she has filled me with the courage to pick up my brush again. It’s a good feeling.

I really love adding 3-D details like the lace, gems and pearls. I can’t believe I never blended collage and painting in art school! I was missing out!

Next, we have to do a self-portrait! Yikes! I’m excited to try though. We will also be making Santos dolls, which looks like a fabulous project! I will keep you posted.

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A Vintage portrait with Grace

Hi everyone! Hope you had a lovely weekend. Grace and I got to work on one of the art projects for my online art class this weekend and it was so much fun.  The assignment was to create a vintage inspired portrait on a small piece of canvas.

Grace was anxious to start and dived right in! I love that about creating with kids this young – they have no fear! While I sat there, carefully selecting each scrap of vintage paper, she got straight to work, with no hesitation.

She, of course, finished before me.  Her little fingers were covered in glue but she was just giddy – as was I!

Soon we both had our canvas’ prepared…covered in a patchwork of vintage papers and doilies.

I showed Grace examples of Jeanne’s original work so she could envision the outcome of the project.  See Jeanne’s beautiful piece below…

image via jeanneoliverdesigns

We will be attaching these canvas’ to vintage door plates or escutcheons, just as seen above. I have two coming from Etsy! I love how this makes a stand for these tiny artworks!

Here is Grace’s finished portrait…

When I asked her to tell me the story behind this portrait she said, ” She is a princess, waiting in the garden outside her castle for her prince to come.” I melted. My little romantic.

Here are the first steps of my process…sketching in my girl…

I painted out some of the background papers to create a light area.

Using a Stabilo Marks all pencil, charcoal, white gel pen and acrylic paints I filled in the details. I couldn’t resist adding some tiny pearls to her headband. I thought I was finished but something was missing…

The flock of birds and flower in her hair completed the piece for me.

This was a wonderful little project and I can’t wait to do another one! I bought these little canvas’ in bulk from Michaels and Grace has already started her second one!

Hope you all have a beautiful day!

xo,

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Filed under Art, Crafting, photography, Stories, vintage

Creatively Made : Second Journal Project

Hi everyone! Well, I’ve been busy creating and loving every minute of it! Our second project in the Creatively Made course was to make an altered journal. That is, buy a store-bought sketchbook and create a mixed media piece for the cover. Jeanne showed us so many wonderful techniques and I’m pretty happy with how mine came out…here are the pics…

Prepped the cover with a collage patchwork of vintage papers…

Did an image transfer using a ink-jet color copy of a magazine page. This left a ghost of an image so I could go in and draw in the details and create the hair. I had to re-create most of the face but the transfer left decent enough forms to follow.

Continued to add details, including a “dress” for my girl from some pretty wedding invitation paper. Used colored pencils and washes of acrylic paint to add color and detail.

Here’s a little tip that works great for me – pick a color palette before you begin your piece. It helps me stay focused and reassures me that my color selection is harmonious. I love using Design Seeds color books. You can get them here.  I used her “Figs” palette…

The metal key and corners can be found at Michaels in the scrapbook section (buyer beware – you may end up walking out with a whole lot of lovely bits and pieces – I do, everytime!), as can the die cut butterfly and pearls. I love adding these pretty 3D elements.

Now I just have to fill it up with more art!

Hope you are all having a beautiful week!

xo,

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Filed under Art, Crafting