Category Archives: Art

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Festivities, Gifts, and New Etsy Listings

Festivities

Travis and I hosted this year’s December festivities at our home for his family (my family lives in Chicago). We live in a small one-bedroom condo. It is the perfect size (well, almost perfect ;) for us but not the best size for a family gathering but we made it work!

We cleared our crafting area/table and put all of it temporarily in a corner of our bedroom. That gave us table space for desserts and snacks! I made flan and Nutella cookies, Travis’ mom, Janet, brought pumpkin cookies and a pumpkin pie, Tessa brought some of her mom’s cookies, and Travis’ aunt Carol brought some kale chips, wine, and pomegranate juice.

For dinner, we made a slow-cooked cilantro lime chicken and it was really good. Everyone loved it. Even the picky eaters. ;)

We also had a mixed salad and a green rice casserole that Janet made. Both were very good. There were a variety of drinks, too! I made champurrado which is a thick hot chocolate drink. Travis was in charge of the mixed drinks: eggnog martini (his aunt Carol really liked it); Janet and I had Margaritas; I also had a mojito and a wine/pomegranate liqueur mixed drink (the original recipe called for champagne); and Tessa had a watermelontini. Not sure what Travis’ dad or brother, Alan and Spencer, had.

We first watched the first Home Alone movie and Elf with Alan and Janet. Alan showed me how to play cribbage and then played a short round of it with Alan, Janet, and me and Travis. I think I got the gist of it. It seemed a little complicated at first with all the counting of the cards but it was fun, too. This brings up the total of card games I know to two!

With everything going on, I did not get to take any pictures but I will post the ones that Janet managed to get. :)

The very few pictures taken on the day by Janet Way:

Carol with a yummy eggnog martini!

Carol with a yummy eggnog martini! Travis likes filling drink to the brim. :) There's Spencer in the back, too. We're sorry Larry couldn't make it. Hope he's doing better!

Janet's pumpkin pie. Very yummy!

Janet's pumpkin pie. Very yummy!

My flan.

My flan.

I like how all of these pictures came out looking vintage-y and sepia-toned.

Gifts

Oh, and the gifts! I think everyone liked what they received. Janet handed me down her sewing machine! I had been wanting one for so long! And it reminds me of my mom’s old sewing machine she had a very long time ago when I was a kid. Nostalgia. Janet, you have a knack for knowing what I want/need/like! :D

She also gave me a few scarves. I can always use more scarves. It is a great way to dress up or change up your outfits! She also gave me a little set of bar soaps which I will use for when out-of-town friends visit us in April.

Carol gave us some neat stuff, too! Vintage Polaroid instant cameras (I LOVE cameras!) and vintage jewelry type stuff that were her grandmother’s.

For my first time ever hosting anything I think I did well. And cooking for people, that was kinda scary. :)

Vintage Miscellanea

Vintage Miscellanea. I already have an idea for the big vintage weaved button with a ring behind it.

Vintage Polaroid Camera - Sun600 LMS

Vintage Polaroid Camera - Sun600 LMS

Vintage Polaroid Camera - Supercolor 635CL

Vintage Polaroid Camera - Supercolor 635CL

Vintage Singer Sewing Machine

Vintage Singer Sewing Machine

Vintage Singer Sewing Machine

Vintage Singer Sewing Machine

This Week’s Etsy Listings

I try to post four to five new items once a day per weekday but since this past week has been so busy I only have the following three items:

Vintage Espresso Brown Fabric Covered Button on an Adjustable Silvertone Metal Ring

Vintage Espresso Brown Fabric Covered Button on an Adjustable Silvertone Metal Ring

Pearly and Black Plastic Button with Light Pink Glass Pearls Stretch Bracelet

Pearly and Black Plastic Button with Light Pink Glass Pearls Stretch Bracelet

Gray Knit Button on an Adjustable Silvertone Metal Ring Base

Gray Knit Button on an Adjustable Silvertone Metal Ring Base

This week has been great. Ashes and Cheesecake came out to greet the family a few times during the festivities. Ashes was more shy and stayed in the bedroom longer but Cheesecake would come and go as usual. He loved all the petting and all the wrapping paper on the floor.

Looking forward to next week, next year, and beyond.

~T

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Busy, Busy, Busy… But In A Good Way!

Job Training

This week has already been a busy one and it is not even related to the holidays.

As I mentioned at the end of my previous post, I have found a new job! It is seasonal but that is totally okay with me. I had two days of training so far on Monday and Tuesday of this week from 9 am to 3:30 pm on both days. The first day felt a bit slow to progress and there was a lot of lecture time. Tuesday was better as we broke up into small teams and practiced scenarios to help us better serve clients/customers. The trainer was very knowledgeable and she has been at this company for 10-11 years. I think she did a great job of getting through all of the material.

I am excited and looking forward to starting at my new job as I have been on the job hunt for months! The office I was assigned to is close to me so I can walk there and back home.

In other news, I have made three more Etsy sales courtesy of a local gaming friend! It was very unexpected but, of course, I am very thankful and happy that my friend would find something he liked enough to purchase and give as presents. I hope the recipients enjoy them. :)

Usually, I start a blog post draft a few days before Wednesdays when I publish a new post so I am sorry for those who read my blog if this one is not as “rich” as my last few posts have been. Next week’s may be a bit better with pictures of holiday festivities. :)

I also have a few more jewelry pieces in progress that I am not quite sure how to finish off. I am sure the inspiration will come and I just need to be a little patient. And I am good at being patient which can sometimes be a curse.

This Week’s Etsy Listings

Large Vintage Turquoise Fabric Covered Button Ring

Large Vintage Turquoise Fabric Covered Button Ring

Vintage Light Gray Fabric Covered Button Ring

Vintage Light Gray Fabric Covered Button Ring

Braided Pink Satin Ribbon and Goldtone Chain Bracelet

Braided Pink Satin Ribbon and Goldtone Chain Bracelet

Floral Oval Pendant with a Pink Satin Ribbon and Goldtone Chain

Floral Oval Pendant with a Pink Satin Ribbon and Goldtone Chain (SOLD the same day listed! Yay!)

I absolutely LOVED this last piece. I had been eyeing the pendant at Hobby Lobby each time I went there but since it was a little more expensive I kept discouraging myself from buying it. I finally just bit the bullet, bought it, stored it for a few days and then I finally got an idea of how to use it in a piece. It is my most expensive listing to date but it was justified because of the pendant price and it took a little longer to put together than the simpler ribbon and chain bracelets. It was worth it!

The gray button ring and the braided bracelet are also some of my favorite pieces. For some reason I really like grays, almost any shade of gray. I was satisfied with how the pink braided bracelet came out, too. I had an idea for it and I was not sure if it would work but it did and I am glad. :)

Lastly, I am very happy with how most things in my life are turning around and getting better. My Etsy shop is starting to bloom, I am starting at a new job soon, and I am hoping that with this new job I will be more motivated to exercise more and take better care of myself in general. Staying home all the time is not good!

Thanks for reading!

~T

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Playing with Clay, Etsy Successes, and a New Job!

Playing with Clay

Last Friday, I decided to finally get my feet wet and try my hand at working with clay. I used some of the clay Travis bought some time ago, although, he also bought me this really nice set of metallic bake clay but I wanted to try the easier/cheaper stuff he had that only needs to be air dried.

I made a few different heart-shaped pieces, a round disc-like piece with my thumbprint, and a round hoop with a chain print. The clay pieces came out pretty nicely, my favorite being this heart-shaped piece:

 I poked a small hole at the top intersection of the shape so I can connect a jump ring and use it as a pendant. I need to finish painting it. I think it will be completely red. I am really liking the bright red I am using here. :)

Travis’ Eyeglass Holders Taking Over & First Etsy Sale

Since Tuesday (December 6th) when Travis made his first Etsy sale, Travis has been on an eyeglass making kick! He was so excited. :) Travis has been putting together more eyeglass holders after work and on his days off and they are starting to take over one of our condo windows and the wall next to it.

The more eyeglass holders Travis makes the prettier they are. I think he already has a great eye for design and he is not afraid of colors, he LOVES them. The crazier the better. ;)

This Week’s Etsy Listings

Vintage Pink Knit Button

Vintage Pink Knit Button

 

Sage Green Velveteen Ribbon & Chain Bracelet

Sage Green Velveteen Ribbon & Chain Bracelet

Large Vintage Navy Blue Fabric Button Ring

Large Vintage Navy Blue Fabric Button Ring

Lime Green and Iridescent Purple River Shell Beads Ring

Lime Green and Iridescent Purple River Shell Beads Ring

White and Purple River Shell Beads Ring

White and Purple River Shell Beads Ring

White and Iridescent Purple/Pink River Shell Beads Earrings

White and Iridescent Purple/Pink River Shell Beads Earrings

New Job!

Earlier today I received a call from H&R Block, I had a job interview with them last week, and I got the job! I’m really excited and looking forward to having a job once again. I will, of course, continue creating things because I love doing it and since this job is only seasonal, I will need something to fall back on once it the tax season is over.

So happy!

~T

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Crafty Addiction

Hobby Lobby Addiction

Since this craft store, Hobby Lobby, has opened in our area about a month or so ago Travis and I have been visiting the store and buying cool things we find. And we buy something EACH TIME WE GO! It is crazy but it has also been very fun. I have enjoyed all my trips there and most of the time I get things I actually need as opposed to things that I just like. It takes quite a bit of restraint. ;)

Hobby Lobby has lots of really cool stuff and we just cannot help ourselves sometimes when we visit. So far their prices have been more affordable than Jo-Ann or Michael’s (both of which are also very near us!).

And… Guess what? We just discovered yet another crafty store on Monday. This is a smaller store full of weird/cool things. They also have a “creation station” where you can go and use their space for a small fee to make whatever you want with whatever they have. The store is called Creation Station.

Here is their store blurb from their website:

Creation Station is an innovative crafts store and art studio located in Lynnwood, Wash. For the past 15 years, we have supplied surplus and recycled materials to teachers, students, artists, inventors, scientists, engineers and all those who love to create and dream.

And here is their cute business card:

front

back

Here are a few pictures I took while we were there (using my iPhone camera, some pictures may be blurry/dark):

Decor

Some handmade decor. There are tons of other "decorations" around the store, some used as samples to give you ideas for item uses.

Single cabinet doors.

Single cabinet doors. Great for painting and creating some other great artwork on.

Red Milk Caps

Red milk caps.

Empty VHS Tape Boxes

Empty VHS tape boxes.

Cardboard Tabs

Cardboard tabs with a few strung together as ornaments.

Flattened Milk Cartons

Flattened new, unused milk cartons.

Empty Bottles, Lids, etc.

Empty bottles, lids, etc.

Tiles

Tiles

We will be sure to go back and support this small business. I bought a small roll of leather, a package of wire, and a fabric sampler book thingy with some cool fabrics I hope to be using.

Supporting Local Artists

On Saturday, Travis’ mom (Janet), invited me to tag along with her to a local artists “Annual Holiday Show and Bargain Extravaganza” which she held in her home that also serves as her studio/factory. The artist is Mary-Melinda Wellsandt and she keeps a blog here: http://marymelindasworld.blogspot.com/ Beautiful home, by the way.

I also found her Facebook page and Flickr photo stream. Very stalkery of me, I know, but these pages are out there for the public to see! ;)

She creates beautiful glass pieces such as vases, tumblers, candle holders, and wine and martini glasses. I bought two martini glasses at $20 each (seen in a picture at the end of this post on the left). They had a nice, subtle green hue to them with a pretty design.

While at Mary-Melinda’s place she had flyers for other friends’ “Holiday Bazaar & Social” who live nearby and was also holding this little event at their home, Dee and Matt. Matt owns a store on Queen Anne called Four Winds Artful Living and he would be having some of the items from his store for sale at this home event at a 10% discount. Among some of the items there were cashmere scarves and hats, pashmina shawls, leather handbags, candles and soaps, jewelry, handmade paper journals, pretty Thai silk coin purses, and t-shirts. I bought a little sage green coin purse because it was about all I could afford at that point. It is really pretty with roses sewn on and I had been looking for a coin purse anyway!

Matt and Dee have a beautiful home and it is right at the end of their street overlooking Lake Washington! Take a look at the great view they get to wake up to:

View of Lake Washington

View of Lake Washington. Their house is on the right edge of the picture.

More Lake Washington views

More Lake Washington views. I panned a little more to the left.

Front Entrance

Matt and Dee's front entrance to their home.

Pond

They also have this cute little pond with actual fish! I did not get any fish in the picture, however. :(

Afterwards, Janet and I walked around in the Columbia City neighborhood, near where the Farmer’s Market she works at. We went into a gallery and looked around. We saw some neat things and even some of Mary-Melinda’s pieces. There were some button rings(!!!) and bracelets on display, too! They were really pretty and gave me some ideas to work with. We visited a small store of one of Janet’s long-time customers but she was not there. There were some really cool pieces in the shop, too. For a light lunch/dinner we stopped in at a small but nice pizza place (I do not remember the name!) and had a “pizzete”, a small 8″ personal pizza which we shared, and I had a raspberry lemonade. It was all very yummy!

Later that night, Travis, Janet, Alan (Travis’ dad), and I went to Cinebarre to watch the new Muppets movie. It was better than I thought it was going to be and it was very funny and entertaining. Janet also gave me a tin box full of beautiful/cool vintage rings (50’s/60’s) that were Travis’ grandmother’s! I had always dreamed of being handed-down something from a grandparent but I never met or knew any of my grandparents except my mom’s dad who lives in Florida, but we do not really keep in touch as he does not speak Spanish/English very well.

Here are a couple of sneak peeks of the buttons I received:

Tin With Vintage Buttons

Tin With Vintage Buttons!

Vintage Buttons

A few of the vintage buttons I plan to use. More leather braided buttons, too!

New Etsy Listings

A cute pink satin ribbon and goldtone aluminum metal chain bracelet. :)

Bracelet: Pink Satin Ribbon and Goldtone Metal Chain Bracelet

Pink Satin Ribbon and Goldtone Metal Chain Bracelet

A retro looking ring made from a vintage brown leather braided button.

Vintage Brown Leather Braided Button Ring

Vintage Brown Leather Braided Button Ring

Another vintage button ring this time in navy blue and it is a fabric ring with a goldtone metallic ring as the base for the button. The ring part is still a silvertone ring.

Vintage Navy Blue Fabric and Goldtone Button

Vintage Navy Blue Fabric and Goldtone Button Ring

Vintage button ring in black fabric with a goldtone ring as the base of the button.

Vintage Black Fabric and Goldtone Button Ring

Vintage Black Fabric and Goldtone Button Ring

And lastly, one more vintage button ring, similar to the previous one except this one is a little bigger.

Large Vintage Black Fabric and Goldtone Button Ring

Large Vintage Black Fabric and Goldtone Button Ring

Again, thank you for reading! My posts continue to grow and get longer but since I am really only posting once a week I think it is ok. What do you think?

~T

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Pretty Shell Pendant & Bead Necklaces

A few days ago I assembled a couple of necklaces that are now listed in my Etsy shop. Both necklaces feature a large shell disc with a pretty design in black. One necklace has a round black wood bead and hangs on a soft shiny black necklace (pictured below). I love the small hint of yellow on this pendant.

I have had these pendants for a few years now and I had even started the necklace with the wood bead a few years back but just had not finished it until now. Originally, I was going to use a string that looked like it could be made from straw. It looked nice but not as nice as with the black satiny cord.

Click the image to see the listing on Etsy in a new tab/window

Branches and Butterfly Graphic Shell Pendant and Wood Bead on a Black Satin Cord Necklace

Branches and Butterfly Graphic Shell Pendant and Wood Bead on a Black Satin Cord Necklace

The second necklace has a pearl bead and hangs on a multi-strand waxed cotton necklace (pictured below). Again, I already had the necklace for a few years and just did not think to put it with the shell pendant nor the faux pearl bead until I had finished the necklace with the wood bead. I knew I did not just want to create something that looked too similar to the first one. I looked through my stash of crafts and after playing around with different things I paired the pearl bead with the pendant and instantly knew that they belonged together.

Click the image to see the listing on Etsy in a new tab/window

Flowers and Branches Graphic Shell Pendant and Plastic Pearl Bead on a Multi-Strand Waxed Cotton Cord Necklace

Flowers and Branches Graphic Shell Pendant and Plastic Pearl Bead on a Multi-Strand Waxed Cotton Cord Necklace

I have a third shell disc that I will be keeping for myself though I am not sure how I will finish it yet. ;)

Lately, I have been inspired to create more jewelry. For the most part, I have created jewelry for women but I would love to come up with a few things for men. But what? I thought of bracelets and necklaces but I wonder how popular those would be… Other things I can think of are cuff links and watches. Maybe I should think of accessories rather than jewelry? Maybe a cool phone case? So many ideas and things to think about, so little time!

What do you guys think of the necklaces? How would you style them? What suggestions can you lend me for male-oriented items?

Thanks for visiting!

~T

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