Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Upcycled Tank Top Project

I wanted to share another little project from my current online class Recycling Remix!  This week is using and reusing fabric in different ways.  I started this simple upcycled tank top project at the Long Beach Quilt Festival last week as an example of HOW SIMPLE and COOL carved vegi stamps can be but I have taken the project a little further.

I think we all have a tank top or even t-shirts in our closets that are old or just not very exciting- this simple project will transform plain tops to fun embellished fashion!!

Start by carving a stamp from your vegi of choice (personally I like sweet potatoes the best!) I use wood carving tools but you can also use an exacto blade or even a very sharp knife.

Then stamp all over the tamk top or tee- I used black silkscreen ink but you could also use fabric paint or even acrylic paint (I guarantee none of the above will come out in the wash!) I decided to only stamp around the v of the tank.

Next, I embellished the tank with colorful little buttons.  

And...VOILA!!!! A colorful, sassy and one of kind transformed tank!!!

Monday, July 27, 2009


I am finally resurfacing from craziness that has been the last week!  I have been in Long Beach at the International Quilt Festival for most of the week teaching at Make it University, meeting all kinds of amazing people and finding inspiration EVERYWHERE! 

I met up with Traci Bautista and Lisa Engelbrecht to plan a collaborative graffiti retreat this fall at the Art Bar- I will share more info very soon!   I finally got to spend some time with the talented Melanie Testa and had lots of wonderful chats with so many creative artists, authors and teachers!  It is always AMAZING to get to connect and meet up with like minded people and it only makes me feel oh so thankful to get to be living and pursuing this creative life!!

Like last year I was blown away by all of the beautiful work that was on display- so inspiring!

Now I am back into the swing of things and though I have only a week or so to prep for ArtUnraveled I am making myself take a day off from everything to let my body and my brain just relax!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Hot, Humid and Grumpy!

I have a confession to make...I have been really grumpy this week and I am pretty sure it has to do with the weather in San Diego... IT IS SO HOT AND HUMID HERE!!! 

It is a challenge for me to feel inspired, be productive and get creative when it is hot and I am at home with no cool air all day! Honestly I have been dragging and struggling with my schedule and finding ways to be productive in the heat. So in between prepping for the Long Beach Quilt Festival this weekend, I have been keeping my mind off the heat by doing a lot of this-

and even though it has been hot, I have been doing lots of cooking
(its kinda the one thing that totally relaxes me and I have a dream of opening a cafe one day) 
This week is was zeppoli- homemade italian donuts- OMG SO GOOD!!!

I have also been OBSESSED with my patio garden- I am growing all kinds of flowers, herbs and vegis and I check on the baby lettuce sprouts at least 10 times a day!!!

But thankfully I am all ready to be at the Quilt Festival Thursday-Sunday and am looking forward to meeting with all my favorite peeps!!! I will blogging all weekend so stay tuned!!!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Recycling Remix Project

I wanted to share one of the photo demos from my current online class- Recycling Remix! It is 5 weeks of video and photos demos that give you all kinds of simple techniques and inspiration for transforming trash. You can Register anytime in the next 5 weeks so if you are looking for a fun way to get creative this summer- join us online!!

This is a simple way to use toilet paper or paper towel rolls!!!

Toilet paper and paper towel rolls are the best for creating unique jewelry! Because of the shape and the material you can make some fun earrings!

Instead of trying to flatten out the cardboard make use of the curve and cut different shapes and sizes out of the roll.

Have fun painting the surface-
Use bright colors
Don't be afraid to get messy
Use lots of layers of paint to build up a thick surface
Try adding a little sparkle with glitter paint
Coat the surface with a few layers of clear gloss (gel medium or polurethane or even a glossy modge podge) to protect and shine

Once the paint is dry, add beads and findings to create unique accessories!!

Summer is Here!

Summer is in full swing here in San Diego- It has been in the 80's, there are lots of tourists in town and at the beaches. Thankfully our house faces the ocean- we get a lovely breeze and an amazing view of the sun sinking into the horizon every single evening which means there has been lots of time spent on the patio, grilling and enjoying the warm nights. Last night it was grilled turkey burgers topped with pineapple and homemade french fries- SO GOOD!  I am trying to slow down a bit and enjoy each little moment!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Housework, Quilt Festival and Etsy Sale!

I am SOOOOOO tired (gosh this is a reocurring theme on my blog isnt it?!?) I took the last few days to do something that I actually LOVE...housework!!  After months of building up to quitting my job, then preparing for everything this last month, I have not been able to contribute much to our household in terms of chores so I have been catching up on things like cleaning out my closet, working on the patio garden, repainting our white wood floors (of course I have painted floors what did you expect?), cleaning my studio, doing laundry, cooking and running errands.  Last night my hubby told me that he really likes having a housewife! HA me as a housewife...I think not!  But I feel good- there is just something about cleaning and getting organized that makes me feel like I can reset and start fresh for the next couple months of insanity! I have so much to do and am trying to better organize my new life :)

In not so boring housewife news I am also getting ready to head to the International Quilt Festival in Long Beach next week So if you are heading to the show or are looking for something SUPER fun to do, come visit me at the Quilting Arts Booth all four days to take a mini workshops or stop by Open Studios and chat with me...I love to chat!!  

Here is my schedule-

Thursday, July 23

Open Studios- 5-7pm I will be demoing all kinds of my funky and fabulous techniques!

(Preview Nights) 8:00–9:00       Hand-carved Stamps
Why purchase all of your stamps when you can make some yourself! Learn a variety of unique ways to make your very own handmade stamps with easy-to-use materials.  

Friday, July 24

Open Studios-  5-7pm I will be demoing all kinds of my funky and fabulous techniques!

Saturday, July 25

2:45–3:45pm      Creative Cuff
Create a cuff bracelet from painted fabric, buttons, canvas, and an assortment of non-traditional, recycled materials.

Sunday, July 26

Open Studios-10:15am-12:15pm I will be demoing all kinds of my funky and fabulous techniques!

12:00–1:00    Easy Graffiti!                                                     

Learn about graffiti and tons of graffiti-inspired techniques that can be applied to fabric, paper, and mixed-media projects.

I will be having a SALE in my etsy shop starting tomorrow and through the weekend- all skinny clutches and simple clutches will be $10 off!! In addition to the sale, updates will be made throughout the weekend with all kinds of new stuff!!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Renegade Los Angeles

I am exhausted!! This weekend was the Renegade Craft Fair in Los Angeles, it was held at the California Market Center Penthouse in L.A.'s fashion district. And while the venue was SUPER cool- I couldn't help but be a little freaked out being at the very top of a building in LA- especially when my hubby (who is a structural engineer who does earthquake testing for a living) kept bring up what would happen if there was an earthquake!  But the views were amazing, the crowd was super hip and weird (its LA!) and the vendors were fabulous! Growing up as a "craft show kid" with artist parents, I know from lots of experience that craft shows can be a huge gamble and totally exhausting.  But this weekend was worth the while and best part was actually getting to hang with my husband- it was definitely a bonding experience! I have lots of updates to share but they will have to wait until tomorrow...I am way too tired!

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

what day is it?

What day is it? Oh yes it is Wednesday- day number 3 of my first week of being self employed and I am exhausted but in a really good way.  I have been working so hard preparing for the Renegade Craft Fair in LA this weekend (please come visit if you are in the area!)  and if life was different and the last month had not been spent leaving my day job and then traveling to teach in Oregon (and if I had NOT hurt my back) I would not have to cram all kinds of work into just one week....But miraculously, I am actually on top of everything and just about ready to head up to LA early Sat. morn.  

I have piles and piles of colorful clutches, pouches, pencil bags and canvas jewlery to fill up my booth.  At this point my studio is a crazy (but organized) mess of color and texture- LOVE IT!

I am also trying my best to get caught up on email, shipping the last of my etsy orders out and try to begin to plan the next year- unfortunately time is not on my side this week but I will just have to do my best.  I am also preparing for my next online class, Recycling Remix and I cannot wait- this is my PASSION right now- making art out of trash so check out the information here..its gonna be SO creative and FUN and in my opinion the best one yet! 

Ok I am off to try and relax for a bit and then it is off to bed and then back to the creative grind tomorrow!!

Monday, July 06, 2009

First Day on the Job

So I am finally back home from my long trip to Oregon and unfortunately the last few days of my trip I threw my back out (AGAIN!!) and since I have been back home in San Diego I have been nursing myself back to good health. I need to figure out how to better deal with my back problems but I am finally feeling better and today was the first day of my new job (working for myself).  

You will see below that instead of dressing nice, I am wearing my painting overalls, scarf on my head and NO MAKEUP- please note that for the first time in like 15 years my Monday morning did not involve putting makeup on! Instead of sitting in a cubicle I am sitting on the ground sorting through purses....

and in instead of sitting in an office with no windows I am now working on the computer in our patio garden....

and while I am SUPER stressed making purses and getting prepared for Renegade Craft Fair this weekend- I am thrilled with my first day of my new job :)  More to come tomorrow!

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

My Shameless Plug for Oregon

Have I mentioned how much I LOVE Oregon? I actually might love it as much as I love my husband or my parents and brother... But I am bias because it is home to me! For those out there who have never visited- in my opinion it is one of THE MOST BEAUTIFUL places in the world!! So if you are looking for a cheap vacation, a road trip or just somewhere that will make you feel small in comparison to the beauty, the largeness of the ocean, the green, the quiet, etc, etc look no further than Oregon for your next trip!!  Here are a few pics from my trip to prove how darn great it is....


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