Monday, April 27, 2009

Pushing Ahead

I'm sorting through boxes of photographs. Some I will sell in the shop. Some I would like to use in artwork and these I just have to keep for myself!

Isn't she wonderful?

Another hand coloured beauty!

Don't you just love this "paper moon" and stars background? The photographer used it more than once as I have other photos of different people sitting, standing or leaning on the moon.

I collected a lot of these photos when I was making collage shadowboxes. I started making the shadowboxes when my nana passed away. My sister had been particularly close to her and in cleaning out some of nana's things, I found some cute "little kid" notes my sis had written. I decided to make a tribute box for my sis of things that were Nana. I included a photo of my nana as a young woman (above), the note, an embroidered monogramed hanky, jewelry bits. It was so fun and I got such a positive response, I started making them for all my friends. I tried to find old photos that looked like my friends and then include things they were interested in.

I think I made one with a photo that looked like my cousin Diana, and tried to sell it. A shop took it and then never paid me and finally after a lot of effort on my part, sent it back, a little shop worn. Sadly I just gave up making them after that. It's funny to realize I was way ahead of the times with my altered art and collages. But sad to realize how sometimes I just get stopped.

Do things happen and you stop doing a certain project or making a certain thing or pursuing some goal? What stops you? What gets you back on track?

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Shop Girl

I spent the whole day working in my shop.

I have gotten so much support on doing this, its really wonderful. Thanks all for the positive comments. Yesterday my hairdresser, said, "Just do it! Don't think, don't analyze, just throw open the doors!" And she's right about the don't think, don't analyze part. Unfortunately I do not have enough liability insurance to throw open the doors!

I worked on this area and even got some pricing done. Most of this junk, er I mean treasures, has been moved to another part of the shop. The plan is to work on one alcove at a time and move items to where they will eventually be displayed. So far so good. The plan is to keep me from getting side-tracked.

Here's a close-up of the sideboard above. I painted it a while ago. The top was faux finished to look like marble and it looked very authentic, in soft greys and lavendars. Unfortunately I used an oil-based sealer and it turned my faux marble a very dingy yellow color. Yuck! So, I stripped the top back to primer and need to re-do it. Still faux marble is really fun -- feathers dipped in paint and everything.

Late in the afternoon I was pretty burned out, so I wandered over to my neighbors' house. She has a home-based business and shop in her house. I needed a break and I thought she would really like the photo used in yesterday's post. She came back over with me and had fun poking about. She has done a lot of display work and has invited herself to come play and do displays with me when the shop is a little closer to opening. This pic has nothing to do with anything, except there needed to be a break in the text and Amy said she likes this tin.

This is a picture I took at Paris to The Moon. I was able to attend an open house there while visiting my mom, and what an amazing shop! It is such an inspiration of cool funky and pretty items, handmade beauties and eye-catching displays.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Small World

Such grace. It looks like nothing would surprise these young ladies.

Not me. I am thoroughly surprised and perhaps a bit overwhelmed!

Last week I discovered a beautiful artful blog. I put it on my favorites list. I wandered through the older posts, seeing photographs of very familiar beaches. I realized the person lived on Cape Cod and thought, "Maybe someday we will meet and that would be very cool." Then last night I was so taken by the embellished frame and post card -- pink! roses! buttons! rick-rack! vintage millinery! pearl and rhinestone trim! What's not to like?! So I left a comment.

This morning, to my delight and surprise I discovered the blog in question, is done by someone I know. She went to the college where I was a librarian. She might have taken a course from my husband. My daughter has babysat for her kids, my son's first job in HS was with her family. We've just never talked about art.

What a kick it was to read her comment and realize not only have we met, we know each other and now we have this wonderful artful thing in common.

After reading her email, I left the house to get my hair done (I love my hairdresser!) When I returned I discovered all these lovely comments delivered to my email. All of them said Louise had sent them. Her post this morning encouraged her readers to stop over here and they have done so in droves. My inbox is now filled with great comments and new blogs to check out. I'm delightfully overwhelmed! I would like to return the favor. If you haven't already, do stop by Whispering Poppies. You can tell Louise I sent you.


Saturday, April 18, 2009

Treasures in My Mailbox

This came in the mail today from my friend Mary Green!

I was so delighted cuz I've only seen Mary's work online. Now I get to see it in person!

The packaging is so beautiful I wanted to document each part!

Isn't the little card with the "G" wonderful?

When I unwrapped the wide satin ribbon in my absolute favorite shade of pink,
(how did she know?)
this cool ATC was revealed!
Click here to see more!

I bet this is one of the new rubber stamps Mary designed and had made.

Thank you so much, I love it!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

A Shop of My Own

Do not adjust your computer monitor.
It's not your eyesight!

I'm not sure I want this mess to be in focus!

This is the project I am currently working on. A bricks and mortar shop. I have the space in a barn on our property. It has been zoned mixed-use (we can live here and have a home-based business), I have a business permit. I have the stuff (maybe too much) and I have the desire to open. You might even be able to see I have some displays set up -- the items in the credenza are all rose and pink themed!

So, what's holding me up? I haven't the faintest idea. There seems to be some sort of mental block that gets in the way. I come over here and sometimes I just have to turn around and walk back out. I don't want to say how long I have been trying to do this. (and yes, I can hear Yoda's voice saying, "There is no try Luke, there is only do.")

My studio is out here too. It's the first space I walk into. I keep it relatively neat. I can work there. Last night I decorated these really cute little candy baskets.

I've never had writer's block. I seem to have worked my way part artist's block.
Can I triumph over shop girl block?

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Happy Birthday from Disneyland

My mom and I went to Disneyland on her birthday. Admission to a single park is their gift to everyone on their birthday, you just have to sign up online before you go.

Despite its very irritating song, "It's a Small World" is a very pretty ride. It has recently been renovated and hey, my mom wanted to go on it!

Tom Sawyer's Island has always been a favorite of my mom. Our yearly family vacations were tent camping or backpacking in the Sierra. If we could have camped out here she would have been so happy!

I hope I look this good at 80!

I learned about this magical place here. I don't know the password, and I haven't been behind the door, but I love knowing it is a fabulous secret place! Visiting is on my bucket list!

It was a wonderful day!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Street Fair

My friend Betty and I met when my daughter and hers became fast friends in pre-school. Betty & I discovered we had gone to rival high schools up in the suburbs of LA -- small world. The girls are still friends and talk together on Facebook. Betty and I still go antiquing when we get together.

We spent the day on Newport Avenue in Ocean Beach. It's a great street for antiquing.

There are quite a few antique shops. My favorite is Vignettes. I was so inspired by mirrors decorated with all sorts of old jewelry and broken rhinestone bits around the edges. I thought I had taken pics, but sadly, I think you'll just have to use your imagination, so sorry. I love this shop and their website is a real treat!

At 4 on Wednesdays they close off half the street for a street fair. Betty said the tamales are wonderful and she is right! This stand had vegetarian, chicken, beef, or pork tamales in some pretty tasty combinations.

A flower stand.

And another!

And sweet peas at another!

Potatoes of all shapes and colors!
I wonder what black skinned mashed potatoes look like?

I loved the brilliant colors of the food on top of this great fabric. This booth is owned by a restaurant at the end of the street. As I clicked this pic, I told the owner I would put it up on my blog. "Mention us," he said. And so I am: Ocean Beach Pier Cafe.

There were other things at the street fair -- jewelry, clothing, wonderful handmade hats. But the images that caught my eye and camera were flowers and food!

Saturday, April 4, 2009


This is the San Diego - Coronado Bay Bridge and it is amazing.

My friend Cathy and I started our day on Coronado Island with lunch. We were gabbing so much, catching up on 4 years, we didn't pay much attention to the view. But if we had, this is about what we would have seen. That is San Diego in the background and the Ferry Landing Pier for folks who want to take the boat over.

We wandered around some of the streets. I went back a couple days later and took pictures of houses we had seen. I love this house. It is so New England, with the wonderful addition of a lush garden in March!

My grandparents had a driveway like this in LA.

I took these photos because of the interesting shingles. So far no one has asked me, but I am waiting for the homeowner who asks why I'm taking their home's photo. I wonder what the response will be when I answer "I collect shingle patterns!"

Our next stop was The Hotel Del Coronado, an amazing Victorian complex of hotel, shops, beautiful beach and gardens. We wandered out the back of the hotel and onto the beach.

For more photos of the Hotel Del, here is a Flickr website with lovely pictures other people have taken.

Clambered over these rocks and back to the car.

We drove back via the Silver Strand, a thin strip of land connecting Coronado with Imperial Beach. The elementary school my kids attended had a "ditch day" field trip here for 6th graders. The parents organized it and I was lucky enough to be able to go both times!