no 4. of 52 screen printed squares

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Details about the 52 Screen Printed Squares project can be found here.

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I have a thing for neutrals. I’m the kind of chick that when it’s all grey and cloudy outside, I just stand and stare at all the shades of neutral painted everywhere. I love it, it’s incredible. There are endless variations. I think you notice it more when there seems to be an absence of color, the tiny shifts stand out like a waving flag.

This week’s print is a little bit of an experiment in layering more then one pattern on top of each other. It went kind of argyle on me but I like it, I think it has a unique quality to it. I do love me some good layered printing. :)

Here are the details on this square:

Square base: commercial medium grey cotton fabric

Ink: Simply Screen Paint

Printing tool: Sponge Brushes

Screen type: Thermofax screens

 

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Maybe this color palette is a reflection of Michigan’s winter. This is the month when we are smack in the middle of it and you can start to feel the weight of it. It’s inevitable that they grey will work it’s way into things. Do you ever do that? Does your work ever follow suit with the seasons?

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instagram digest – coffee, doggie burrito, organizing & stitching galore

Don’t miss a single blog post! Subscribe so I show up in your inbox by using the subscription box at the top of the blog sidebar. I never share your information and by subscribing we can make art together all year long! Woo!  ————>

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I’m madly in love with Instagram. It’s my current favorite social media platform right now. Such a wealth of inspiration and new people to meet. I post there a lot and since I know not everyone is a member of the site, I’d like to bring some of my favorite pics to the blog every so often.

My username there is girllovespaint. If you’re also on Instagram and would like to let everyone know where to find you, leave your username in the comments on this blog post and we’ll swing by and give you a big wave hello. :)

Here is a little photo parade from my feed for the last couple of weeks.

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by hand – illustrated quote

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One of my goals for this year is to start sharing these little illustrations I do with quotes. I’ve been doing them for a while but hoarding them. Not sure why but I love them and they’re fun so I’m bringing them to the blog. I hope they brighten your day and maybe give you a little inspiration boost. :)

 

1 - by hand illustrated quote

 

 

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inspiration in motion – i want to live in this exhibit

It’s sometimes hard to remember that the world is huge. Being wrapped up in the day to day of the business of living – it’s not always easy to see past our current to-do lists. I’m no different, I need constant reminder. The easiest way is to watch beautiful videos made by incredible artists willing to share their experiences with others.

I think video has an inspirational effect that is absolutely magical. So I’m going to share some of my favorites here on the blog in the hopes that they will move you, inspire you, thrill you the same way the do me.

This one is about an exhibit called Event of a Thread by Ann Hamilton.

the event of a thread from Paul Octavious on Vimeo.

 

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the printed fabric bee sneak peek – petroglyphs for Lynda

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Do you know about The Printed Fabric Bee? I blogged about it a while back when it first began. I’ve been chugging along with the rest of the group but in order to give it some more attention and keep myself on track with the deadlines, I’m going to be blogging here about it more often.

The Printed Fabric Bee is a group of professional surface design artists participating in a monthly fabric exchange. Kind of like a quilting bee but for the surface design geeks instead. Lisa Chin and I co-founded it over a year ago. 2015 is our second year of being together. We have two places that you can see what the group is up to – our Facebook page and our blog. We also host a giveaway of 6″ squares for that month’s theme so I’ll be reminding you about those giveaways here as well.

Each month a theme is chosen by one of the members and the rest of us make fabric to suit. Lynda Heines is the current Queen of the Hive and she chose Petroglyphs with blue and orange colors. I was surprised to learn that Michigan is not without these wonderful artifacts. Cass City plays host to the Sanilac Petroglyphs so I’ve decided to do a tribute to those.

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This is not finished yet, it needs more layers and I’m thinking perhaps a little toning to bring down the screaming orange but it’s the start. I’m using mid-month to offer a sneak peek of where the fabric is heading. My final fabric along with the giveaway collage will get posted at the end of the month so stick around for that!! And be sure to follow along with us at one (or both) of our two homes. :)

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no. 3 of 52 screen printed squares

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Details about the 52 Screen Printed Squares project can be found here.

 no 3 of 52

 

no 3 close up

 

Printing on really dark backgrounds is not always my strong suit. Paint that is opaque enough to take it on is stuff I usually don’t enjoy using so that leaves me with the challenge of figuring out what will work. You can see the magenta and the cream color paint up above in the close up shot sort of looks like it’s seeping into the fabric. I knew these were low opacity but decided to give them a whirl anyhow. I think the transparency makes it interesting.

I’m also working on doing more multi-color printing. Which means multiple screens and splitting up the design into their appropriate stages. I’m getting more comfortable with it and finding that I actually really enjoy it.

Here are the details on this square:

Square base: hand dyed deep purple cotton from Cherrywood Fabrics

Ink: Martha Stewart craft paint mixed with Golden Screen Printing Medium

Printing tool: Sponge Brushes

Screen type: Thermofax screens

no 3 in process

 

no 3 with paint

I feel like I want to see this pattern on a much bigger span. It’s a little quirky. I labeled the screens “bubble thought” because that’s what it reminds me of.  I almost printed it in a super high contrast black and white, might still do that. It makes me think about if some of these designs will get expanded into larger spaces. I won’t lie to you – it’s hard for me to just do a little piece and to restrict it to only screen printing. I can feel myself getting all beady eyed and sticking my tongue out to concentrate – bring me more paint! Muauahahahahahahahha!!!!

But really – the exercise of one technique on a small scale is a challenge for me. Which I guess is the point of this whole thing. So that’s No 3, I’m already plotting No 4. :)

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Want to start a business? we’ve got you covered

Don’t miss a single blog post! Subscribe so I show up in your inbox by using the subscription box at the top of the blog sidebar. I never share your information and by subscribing we can make art together all year long! Woo!  ————>

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Sign up!

Thursday January 22 at 1pm EST

** Please note: If you can’t attend the live presentation, you can still sign up.  A recording that includes audio and the presenetation will be sent out afterward.

 

Believe me when I say I understand how intimidating it can be to get the ball rolling when you decide to start your own business. There are so many details to work through it can seem like you’re getting buried. But honestly? Deciding to do it is the hardest part. The rest can all be learned.

Cheryl Sleboda and I are going to help you do just that – figure out the odds and ends so that you can concentrate on building your business with joy instead of stress. This one hour webinar is packed with information and the thing that makes it really well rounded? You’re getting two artist/business owners for the price of one. We approach some areas the same but at the same time we have different reasons and viewpoints on others. It will help you see things from various angles and since there is no one right way to go about all this, it’s a good thing.

Here is the rundown of topics:

What you’ll learn:

  • From Hobby to Business – How to decide when it’s time to turn your art into a business and choosing which format is right for you (sole owner, LLC, Corporation).
  • Selling Online vs. In Person – How to decide which suits you best and the pros and cons of each.
  • Branding + Marketing – Why you need a brand, what it is and easy ways to market your business without breaking the bank.
  • Choosing the Revenue Stream that is Right for You – How working on multiple projects keeps your balance sheet happy.
  • Customer Experience – People will always remember how you make them feel before anything else. Learn how to keep your customers coming back time and time again!

 

And again, if you can’t make it to the live event but still want the info, still sign up. Everyone will get a recording to keep after the live event so it’s super easy to be in on the action. See you there! :)

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deconstructed color – winter branches

Don’t miss a single blog post! Subscribe so I show up in your inbox by using the subscription box at the top of the blog sidebar. I never share your information and by subscribing we can make art together all year long! Woo!  ————>

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I should warn you – I’m on a path to blog more. A lot more. I’ve long been wanting a blog that has posts nearly every day. I’m now in a possession of an editorial calendar and a determination that rivals a teenager trying to text during family dinner. I want this blog to be a place of inspiration and a little spot to pause during your day. With all that being said, I hope you’ll subscribe using the handy dandy little box at the top of the sidebar. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.

This is one of the new types of posts I’m excited about. My artwork is always layered with many colors and the fascination comes from knowing that what I’m able to see isn’t all that there is – that broken down into individual elements, there are endless color combinations in there.  And when I got my fabric, I was completely enamored with the color breakdown printed on the selvedge. It makes me want to do that to everything I look at.

So I thought we’d give it a shot. Here is one of the photos I took of our winter trees against our winter sky:

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Some may say it’s gloomy. I disagree, I think it’s rich with color. Run it through a color generator program and this is what it says the breakdown is:

 

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Gorgeous, right?? Color – endless fascination I’m telling you. Winter isn’t such a boring artist after all, is she? What’s your favorite color of this season?

 

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The 100 Fundraiser – A Fiberart for a Cause fundraiser to benefit the American Cancer Society

Don’t miss a single blog post! Subscribe so I show up in your inbox by using the subscription box at the top of the blog sidebar. I never share your information and by subscribing we can make art together all year long! Woo!  ————>

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Artist Virginia Spiegel is fundraising again for the American Cancer Society via her project Fiberart for a Cause. So far her fundraiser has earned over $240,000 in donations to the ACS. This year she has invited 100 artists to donate artwork to the cause and I’m honored to be one of them. Here’s how it works:

On February 4, 2015 Virginia will provide a link to donate $100 to the American Cancer Society. Anyone who does will receive artwork from one of the 100 artists participating. Artwork will be randomly selected but with the list of people participating, there’s no way there will be anything other then awesomeness available.

You can see all the artists participating and full details of how to donate on February 4 on Virginia’s site here.

I’m donating a diptych of two small printed collages.  Each one is a 7″ collage attached to an 8″ canvas with a sawtooth hanger on the back for easy hanging. They are called Dreamtime Graffiti:

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The background pieces were created with deconstructed screen printing. The bird is an original hand drawing made into a Thermofax screen.

I do hope that you will participate on February 4 so we can help the American Cancer Society in the fight against cancer.

 

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no. 2 of 52 screen printed squares

Don’t miss a single blog post! Subscribe so I show up in your inbox by using the subscription box at the top of the blog sidebar. I never share your information and by subscribing we can make art together all year long! Woo!  ————>

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Details about the 52 Screen Printed Squares project can be found here.

 

no 2 of 52

 

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Not only do I want to experiment with different kinds of screen printing with this project but colors too. Pink is not my normal bag but I wanted a strong color pop against the deep teal. It seemed to do the ticket. I was also bound and determined to use that fabric but being a collage artist, I have lots of oddballs sizes kicking around the studio. I decided to just piece two together to create the 8″x8″ base.

Here are the details for this square:

Square base: teal loose weave cotton fabric

Ink: Martha Stewart craft paint mixed with Golden Screen Printing Medium

Printing tool: Sponge Brush

Screen type: Traditional screen, pattern created with drawing fluid

 

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no 2 of 52 second layer and paint

 

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call for submissions to the Thermofax Screen Printing Design Team! :)

Okay, okay, I’m SO excited for this I can hardly stand it!!! :) I’m so pleased to announce a call for submission to the first ever Thermofax Screen Printing Design Team.

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All of the details as well as the submission form can be found on this page. You can apply to become a member until February 14, 2015.

I’m just so thrilled about this, I do hope that if you are into surface design you will consider applying. I sing the praises of  Thermofax Screen Printing all the time but I’m just one artist and one of the best things about what we do is seeing how everyone uses the same tool differently. That’s the inspiration behind assembling this team. Woo! Paint flinging everywhere! :)

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no. 1 of 52 screen printed squares – a year long weekly art practice

Don’t miss a single blog post! Subscribe so I show up in your inbox by using the subscription box at the top of the blog sidebar. I never share your information and by subscribing we can make art together all year long! Woo!  ————>

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When I first began blogging years ago I had a weekly project. And I loved it. It kept me motivated to create during the week when the daily grind threatens to smoosh Art Brain and I always had something to feed the blog with. Eventually I ran out of steam on that project and stopped but I always missed having a weekly project. Art Brain and I have decided that 2015 is the year to bring it back.

I’m super excited to introduce to you my 52 Screen Printed Squares project. It’s just what it sounds like – 52 squares featuring screen printed designs. Don’t tell the other surface design techniques in my studio but screen printing is my favorite. So I’m taking this year to really explore it and spend some quality time with it.

Here are the details for the project:

Each week on Monday I’ll post an 8″ x 8″ square of fabric featuring a screen printed design. Each design will be created by me. (And because I know the question will be asked, these will not be for sale in the shop as Thermofax screens.) I’ll show the square and list what it’s printed on as well as the ink I used to make it.

Simple, right? Yeah it is but I’m completely stoked about it in every way. It’s likely that I’ll fall back on Thermofax screens pretty frequently. They are my true love after all but I’m going to make an effort to try out different methods of screen printing as well.

So without further ado, I bring you No. 1 of 52 printed squares for the 52 Screen Printed Squares project:

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No. 1 of 52

 

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Square base: brown hand dyed cotton fabric

Ink: Dick Blick Fabric Screen Printing Ink and Simply Screen Paint

Printing tool: Sponge Brush

Screen type: Thermofax Screen

 

no 1 in process

 

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2015 – clearing the decks, setting goals, and a new weekly practice

Don’t miss a single blog post! Subscribe so I show up in your inbox by using the subscription box at the top of the blog sidebar. I never share your information and by subscribing we can make art together all year long! Woo!  ————>

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This is how I begin each year:

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It’s become a ritual – on the first day of each year I take the fabric from my print table off and replace with a brand new clean piece. It’s a symbol that the previous year is done and all my new projects for the current year are priority.

Want to see the one from 2014? Here is most of it (it’s very difficult for me to photograph because it’s so long):

 

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A closer view:

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My print table fabric has become a record for the things that I accomplish during the year. My fabric line was printed on that, several articles were written, galley work was made. I’m always asked what I plan to do with them. The answer is nothing. For now. I have the idea in my head that they will become a running visual diary of my art career and that means I want to leave them whole and just the way they are.

The other thing that I do each year is set goals for what I want to accomplish. I like having a framework to guide me. I’m not crazy strict about it  but I  need them. I have three different kinds and I wanted to share them with you.

Goal type #1: Repeat Goals

These are the items that I accomplished in the previous year that I really enjoyed and would like to do again. For example, writing magazine articles. Can’t get enough of them, love writing them, love being published. So I will strive to write at least four articles in 2015.

Goal type #2: Trying/Learning Something New

These are the goals that require me to learn something new or go completely outside of my normal art practice. Why bother? Because becoming stagnant as an artist is not something I ever want to do. I always want to learn something new, even if it ends up being something that I do just for fun because everything feeds into the overall picture. In 2015, I plan to focus on learning hand lettering. Maybe even how to use Photoshop and Illustrator to work with them (I have a mental block about really digging into Photoshop and Illustrator. Not sure what that is all about.)

Goal Type #3: Pie in the Sky

These are the goals that when you think about them your inner critic shouts “Are you nuts??” (These are my personal favorites.) They can be downright scary and often feel impossible in every way but the way I approach them is that if I never try, I’ll never achieve them. Sometimes I win, sometimes I don’t. I rarely share these ahead of time, it’s a little bit of superstition on my part so I’m keeping my 2015 goals under my hat. But an example of one of these type of goals from 2014 was getting a fabric line. That one was not easy but I got it after a lot of hard work and determination (or stubbornness, whichever you prefer) and now I’m incredibly happy to add that to my list of accomplishments.

By now you’ve probably read on a lot of blogs and social media posts about the word that people have chosen to guide their year. I’ve decided to choose “play” this year. It’s sometimes hard for me to work in No Deadline Art because I always have a list of projects to boot out the door but I’ve realized that it’s like anything else in my art world – just need to make space for it.

And since I’m a framework kind of gal, I’m working No Deadline Art into the schedule in two ways:

1.  A new weekly art practice. The posts for that will begin tomorrow and repeat every Monday throughout the entire year. When I first began blogging I had a weekly project and I miss it dearly. Art Brain has become stupid excited about this and I can’t wait to share it with you so make sure you swing back tomorrow (and the rest of the year for that matter) to see what I’m doing.

2. Exploring more pieced quilts. I enjoy piecing and I want to do more of it. But I also want to do my own designs (shocker) and I found these sketches I did a while back during a recent tidy session in the studio:

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Now that I am in possession of a Sizzix, they feel more doable. We’ll see how they go.

So this is how I begin each new year in the studio. What about you? Do you have a word or do you set goals for each year?

 

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“Fabric Printing at Home” by Julie B. Booth – book review

Don’t miss a single blog post! Subscribe so I show up in your inbox by using the subscription box at the top of the blog sidebar. I never share your information and by subscribing we can make art together all year long! Woo!  ————>

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book cover 

Fabric Printing at Home by Julie B. Booth

Today I thought we’d have a little chat about a new book that’s out. My friend and fellow The Printed Fabric Bee member Julie B. Booth has written an incredibly delightful book about surface design that I just know you’re going to love. Julie has an awesome sense of color and pattern. And she’s put it all down on paper for you to learn her secrets.

 

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printed fabric by Julie B. Booth from Fabric Printing at Home, used with permission

 

What makes this book different? All of the items that Julie uses to print with are found in her kitchen. Where most people view it as a utilitarian room for food prep only, Julie treats it like a playground of inspiration and printing potential.

Julie says: “I now spend my fair share of hours cooking and baking in my small but bright kitchen. I enjoy whipping up a batch of chocolate chip cookies and am known for my butterscotch brownies. But it wasn’t until a few years ago that I realized that the kitchen could also be a resource for my artwork.”

So what types of items does she use? Plastic wrap, wax paper, aluminum foil, junk mail, carboard tubes – just to name a few! She also has recipes for easy resists that you can whip up in your kitchen. And of course, there is an entire chapter on printing with produce (my personal favorite – how fun is that??).

 

printing with veggies

from Fabric Printing at Home by Julie B. Booth, used with permission

 

I love that she uses common everyday objects. Julie’s ability to see art in anything is truly inspirational.

 

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printed fabric by Julie B. Booth from Fabric Printing at Home, used with permission

 

I truly believe that this is a resource that every surface design artist should have in her library. The understanding that surface design is not some grand mystery that is bestowed only to those who can afford the most expensive tools is a real gift. If you want to print it, you can. And Julie proves it with this beautiful book.

In addition to her book, Julie writes an incredible free monthly newsletter with comprehensive surface design techniques. You can sign up on her blog in the sidebar (it’s about halfway down the page). I hope you’ll spend some time with her via her book and her newsletter – she is a wealth of knowledge and inspiration! :)

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not what i should be doing today (and Happy New Year!)

Two days before my year end shutdown from my day job began, I made a schedule. I have a big list of to-do’s that I really want to tackle while I’m off. Uninterrupted studio time makes Art Brain jump up and down like she’s drank a pot of coffee brewed with Red Bull instead of water. I figured that if I broke up the enormous list into a few things each day, I could peacefully plow through it and enjoy every minute of it because I’d be focused and not worried that I was forgetting something.

It’s worked. Kind of. For the most part.

I haven’t been super strict with myself, I’ve let Art Brain have a long leash. Stuff is getting done but I have one huge obstacle that is dragging me down. As in seriously bummiing me out every time I step into my studio. It’s The Heap that lingers along the back wall:

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I hate it with the passion of a thousand burning suns. And at the same time, I adore every piece that makes up the mess. It’s an odd combination and I’m constantly telling myself that I just can’t seem to get a grip on it. I don’t know what to do with it. It’s just always going to be there.

I called bullshit on myself yesterday.

The truth is that I do know what to do with it but I haven’t wanted to deal with it. It’s the only portion of my studio that didn’t get “done” when I worked with the professional organizer a couple years back. And I’ve just let it fester. And get worse. And allowed all the guilt and embarrassment and irritation that goes along with it build to a boiling point.

So what changed yesterday? I re-read this post. And decided that while I would like nothing more than for the Property Brothers to sweep in with their cuteness and sledgehammers and plaid shirts (you can tell which is my favorite), the transformation of this room into The White Studio is going to take many small steps. I see it so clearly in my mind and I used to think that it also couldn’t happen with my current space. But now I don’t think that’s true either. I’m letting go of the idea that  I must have an enormous space outside of my home in order for my studio to be all that I dream of it being.

All of a sudden, The Heap became the number one obstacle to obtaining The White Studio. So yesterday I badgered my brother into going to IKEA with me (which I so don’t recommend doing over the holiday when people are off work, it was insane) and brought home several of these carts. I’ve got a few put together and the dreaded sorting has begun:

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It’s going to take a long time to get through The Heap. The first photo only shows half of it and there is so much there that I need to decide what to do with. But I made a deal with myself that this task would be tidy only, no purging. The idea of sorting and tossing at the same time gives me hives. Plus it will render my studio unworkable and this chick has some deadlines to meet.

I’ve also been setting goals for 2015. You know, since it’s tomorrow and all. I have a word, I have a new project I’m stupid excited about and I have a lot of plans. I’ll talk more about goals in another post since I truly believe that are the thing that fuels me artistically and career wise but for now? For now I’m going to be kind to myself and not berate the mess that I am dealing with or the fact that I have a lot of fabric. I’m a collage artist, my stash is wild and I don’t want to destroy that spirit of it. I just want it to not be all over my floor anymore.

Happy New Year’s Eve everybody. I hope you celebrate however you like best and that you are as excited for 2015 as I am – let’s kick some booty this year. :)

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Bring in the New Year with these DIY inspirations!

Print, paper and confetti! Get creative and check out these blogs for quick “do it yourself” inspirations to decorate your space this season.

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Download here (translate in English)

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Brass tack baubles

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Confetti time!

Make this holiday season extra special with family and friends by trying these handmade ideas. 

Enjoy  :-)

Marked Mosaic Coaster Set Tutorial

coaster completed project

 

When I went to Market back in October, I put together this nifty little project to offer in the booth as a freebie tutorial. It uses four of the semi-solid colors in my fabric line, INKED and my stencil set from Artistcellar, “Marked.” It’s easy and fun and the perfect “down time” project for your holiday break. Click the link below to download the PDF for it and happy coaster making! :)

Smudged Textiles Studio Marked Mosaic Coaster PDF

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wishing you joy

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No matter what you celebrate this time of year, I wish you nothing but joy and happiness. May you begin the new year with a light heart and quietly, but firmly, close the door on things from the past year that no longer serve you. I hope you have a beautiful holiday and I look forward to sharing another year or art together! :)

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Art Business Webinar – will you join me? :)

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Building An Art Business From the Ground Up

January 22, 2015 at 1pm EST

 

When  I decided to get really serious about my business and launch Smudged Textiles Studio, it was one of the scariest, most exciting, anxiety inducing, thrilling experiences of my life. And I’ll tell ya, those feelings never really go away. It’s part of the charm of the whole thing. :)

Figuring out the details was the least fun part. Lots of trial and error and reading books that were either super dull or oddly condescending. I’m asked all the time about how to do this or that. I learned during Fall Quilt Market that Cheryl Sleboda is often approached with the same questions. So we are teaming up and offering a webinar on how to get your art business up and running.

What will we cover? Here’s the rundown:

  • From Hobby to Business – How to decide when it’s time to turn your art into a business and choosing which format is right for you (sole owner, LLC, Corporation).
  • Selling Online vs. In Person – How to decide which suits you best and the pros and cons of each.
  • Branding + Marketing – Why you need a brand, what it is and easy ways to market your business without breaking the bank.
  • Choosing the Revenue Stream that is Right for You – How working on multiple projects keeps your balance sheet happy.
  • Customer Experience – People will always remember how you make them feel before anything else. Learn how to keep your customers coming back time and time again!

Can’t make the live event? No worries. You can still sign up and you’ll receive a recorded copy after the webinar is done. (That way you can make us repeat ourselves as many times as you want.)

The nifty thing is that while Cheryl and I have a lot in common with how we approach our businesses, we also differ enough that we can offer a rounded point of view. We’re super stoked to get the chance to share with you!! :)

Sign up now and start your new year out on the right foot!

 

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peel & stick wallpaper assemblage

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A couple of weeks ago I got an order from Spoonflower for some soon-to-be-in-the-shop stitching kits and they included a wee sample of their peel and stick fabric wallpaper. I knew I wanted some as soon as I saw it but since I don’t have a bunch of blank walls to slather with it, I knew I’d need to let Art Brain have her way with it. And she did.

I took a photo of the fabric covering my print table and goofed around with it in Photoshop. I ordered up the smaller size for the project I did and the magical mailbox portal brought me this:

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I’ve had a little wood box kicking around my studio for a while. I decided they needed to be friends.

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I figured the stick part of the wallpaper wouldn’t be super thrilled about the wood part of the box and I was right. Between the grain and the uneven surface and the dirt that I wasn’t able to wash off, it was a little bit of a challenge to get it on their smoothly.  Luckily I am very stubborn.

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The fun part came next – filling it up and gluing things to it and screen printing on it. Assemblages are a hard one to explain. They don’t follow a formula and they sort of have a mind of their own. About the best piece of advice I can give is this – anything can be used in one and my favorite thing to do is to back myself into a corner on purpose. What I mean by that is I’ll add an element to the work and glue it down straight away. I don’t debate it, I make it permanent and then I’m forced to work around it. It adds a weird kind of challenge to the whole thing that I love.

I’ve also got this weird quirk that I always order far more promotional materials then I can ever use in a lifetime. This would be true of the bookmarks that I ordered for my book. Instead of letting them linger around the studio, I decided to let them have a little fun:

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Glue. Cut. Paint. Repeat. And presto – you get an assemblage out of the whole deal.

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It’s a goofy little thing. But I like it and it was a fun way to spend a couple of hours. And that peel and stick wallpaper? Yes, I want more of that too. I have more boxes that need covering.

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a discount until 2015 & weekly INKED giveaways! :)

Okay, some shop talk today but the kind that I think you’ll really like. If you’ve been thinking about picking up anything from my etsy shop, now’s the time to do it. For the remainder of 2014, everything in the shop is 10% off. Everything. Just enter the coupon code THANKS10 at checkout and etsy will automatically deduct the discount.

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Thermofax screens, my Aurifil floss collection, my book, DVD workshops, my stencils from Artistcellar – it’s all on sale! So give yourself a little giftie or pick something up for that special artist in your life. :)

And I’m also kicking off weekly fat quarter giveaways on my Facebook Smudged Textiles Studio page today! :) Each Sunday I will post a photo of two fat quarters from my new fabric line INKED, leave a comment there (only there, please) to get in on the drawing. The line doesn’t ship until March 2015 so rather then simply taunting you with it until then, I wanted to get some of it out into the world now. Head on over and leave a comment, I’ll announce the winner next Sunday along with the new set to be given away.

Thanks everyone – 2014 has been an exciting year and it’s all because of you! You all rock! :)

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where i stand sunday

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The quiet sign hangs above my writing desk now. I keep moving it around my studio, maybe because it’s message makes me anxious. But in a way that spurs me into action, an understanding that if I waited until a convenient time to make the leap, much of what I would do would never become reality. It’s a difficult philosophy to adopt but one that has served me well – simply jump in with both feet and see where you land.

 

Where I Stand is an ongoing photo essay examining the different places I spend my life standing. Too often we take for granted the everyday places we spend our lives walking on. The ground we tread on has its own stories to tell.

 

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swatch buddies winners! :)

 

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And the winners are..

The two winners of the Swatch Buddies giveaway are Sandra Taylor and Barbara Fox! :) Thanks for commenting everyone!

 

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swatch buddies & INKED giveaway! :)

One of the biggest things I learned at Quilt Market was that the quilting industry is a big place and there is an infinite number of awesome products out there and it’s the place to see them all herded together in one place. Swatch Buddies is one such company that I’m extremely happy to have “discovered”. And now I couldn’t be happier to introduce them to you as well. :)

READ ALL THE WAY TO THE BOTTOM!! THERE IS A GIVEAWAY AND A DISCOUNT CODE –

DON’T MISS OUT!!

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INKED on Swatch Buddies Designer Series cards

 

So what are they? They are cards (either plastic or paper) that you can attach small swatches of your fabric from your stash. Why would you want to do this? Ever go to the quilt shop and buy fabric with absolute certainty that it will be perfect friend for something in your stash and when you finally hook the two of them up they are no where near compatible? Yeah, me too.

Swatch Buddies will help you skip those kind of mistakes. You can take a little piece with you and always know if the friends you are buying for it will jive. Organization, baby – what could be better?

I’m using the Designer Series, which is the largest plastic card they offer:

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This means that when someone asks me about INKED, I can just pull these out and I have the whole line with me. Can’t tell you how silly happy that makes me!

Plus there is the fact that the fine folks over at Swatch Buddies are quite possibly some of the nicest people on earth. They are offering a discount for anything on their site, here are the details:

From now until December 7, you can get 30% off anything on their site using the code Smudged30

These would make great gifts for the quilters/fabric junkies/textile hoarders in your life. Doing a gift swap in your guild and stumped what to get for the member you don’t know that well? Give ‘em a set or two of Swatch Buddies, makes it simple!

AND as if the discount code isn’t enough, I’ve got a couple sets to giveaway! :) Also, I’m giving away a fat quarter of INKED with each set. The fabric doesn’t ship until March 2015 and I feel as though I’m simply taunting you with it every time I mention it so here’s your chance to get your hands on some before next spring.

Leave a comment on this post by Friday November 21 and I’ll announce the winner on Saturday November 22. The first commenter (determined by if they posted before the other winner) chosen will get to pick which set he/she wants. Sound good? Here’s what’s up for grabs:

Giveaway set : #1 Swatch-It-All paperboard set, 15 swatch set. Great for fabric, paper or paint swatches. Plus a very happy bright orange/red FQ of INKED:

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Giveaway set #1

 

Giveaway Set #2: Swatch Buddies 12 card set (plastic cards) + a groovy yellow/green FQ of INKED:

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Giveaway set #2

 

Get commenting and stop by Swatch Buddies to use that great discount while it lasts!!! :)

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Quilt Market – part 1 – the booth and products

I exhibited for the first time at the International Quilt Market last week. I’m still working on catching up. Yesterday I spent the day happily pushing everything around in my studio to make it tidy so I can start working on new and exciting projects that I’m itching to get started on.

I’ve been thinking about how I wanted to share the experience of Quilt Market with you. It’s hard to put into words but for me, there were three main components to the trip: the booth & new products, the people and the art. I don’t feel like I had enough time to really see everything and everyone but I’m happy to park it all here to share with you.

I spent a few months obsessing about my booth. While there are a couple of things I’ll do differently the next time, I’m really happy with how it came out.

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Today’s post is a closer look at everything we corralled into that little space (a 10′x10′ booth is much bigger in your mind then it is in reality). It’s sort of a summary, I want to give a much closer look at everything (especially since some things I don’t have good photos of like the white quilt on the right hand side made by Rossie Hutchinson) plus I’ve got a lot of new products to talk about. They’ll get their own posts but for now? For now I want to just share with you what it was like to basically recreate Art Brain in a booth.

**My fabric line, “Inked”, ships in March 2015. If you would like your local quilt shop to carry it, you can find it here on Red Rooster Fabrics website so they can order it. All other products that were designed by me plus my floss collection with Aurifil will be sold directly through me. I’ll be adding them to my etsy shop over the next few months and will post more information about them here when I do.**

First I have to say that this could not have happened without Cheryl Sleboda’s help. And that’s not flattery, I mean it.  She’s like a booth ninja, nothing scares her and every time I turned around she was up on a ladder or assembling something and doing it all with a smile.

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She was supportive and we got to know each other much better and I feel fortunate to have become good friends with her. :)

The easiest way to share the booth with you is through photos. So here goes.

The boxes were waiting for us when we arrived...

The boxes were waiting for us when we arrived…

 

I got the floor from FLOR. (I've been looking for an excuse to buy their carpet tiles for ages...)

I got the floor from FLOR. (I’ve been looking for an excuse to buy their carpet tiles for ages…)

 

View of the left side...

View of the left side…

 

View of the right side...

View of the right side…

 

The back wall featuring my new fabric line, "Inked", from Red Rooster Fabrics. Many thanks to Cathy Arnett for creating The Great Swatch Wall of INKED.

The back wall featuring my new fabric line, “Inked”, from Red Rooster Fabrics. Many thanks to Cathy Arnett for creating The Great Swatch Wall of INKED.

 

This is "Pathway", a quilt pattern I designed. It will be for sale by the end of 2014. The quilt shown here was made by Patrice Smith.

This is “Pathway”, a quilt pattern I designed. It will be for sale by the end of 2014. The quilt shown here was made by Patrice Smith.

 

This is "Interrupted", the second quilt pattern I designed. This quilt was also made by Patrice Smith.

This is “Interrupted”, the second quilt pattern I designed. This quilt was also made by Patrice Smith.

 

I've got an Aurifil floss collection also called "Inked". (I kind of like color a little bit if you haven't noticed.)

I’ve got an Aurifil floss collection also called “Inked”. (I kind of like color a little bit if you haven’t noticed.)

 

My hand stitching addiction knows no bounds. This is a pattern + starter set that I designed.

My hand stitching addiction knows no bounds. This is a pattern + starter set that I designed.

 

"Create" and "Stitch" inspirational posters designed by Jackie Lams. All the signage in the booth was designed by her, it looked awesome!

“Create” and “Stitch” inspirational posters designed by Jackie Lams. All the signage in the booth was designed by her, it looked awesome! These posters will be available for purchase as well.

 

Booths are nothing without samples and I had tons of help in that department. Here are a few of the pieces that hung out in the booth for the show:

Pillows made by Cathy Neri (she did a mini version of my quilt pattern "Interrupted" for a pillow cover), a paint flinging inspired pillow by me and a pieced INKED pillow by Cathy Arnett.

Pillows made by Cathy Neri (she did a mini version of my quilt pattern “Interrupted” for a pillow cover), a paint flinging inspired pillow by me and a pieced INKED pillow by Cathy Arnett.

 

A chicken (LOVE the chicken!) and pin cushions made by Lisa Chin from INKED.

A chicken (LOVE the chicken!) and pin cushions made by Lisa Chin from INKED.

 

 

Journal covers made by Deborah Boschert from INKED.

Journal covers made by Deborah Boschert from INKED.

 

Reusable lunch bags made by Carol R. Eaton from INKED.

Re-usable lunch bags made by Carol R. Eaton from INKED.

 

A *very* cool bag made by Patricia Wolff from INKED.

A *very* cool bag made by Patricia Wolff from INKED.

 

Patricia added this special touch - isn't it great?? :)

Patricia added this special touch – isn’t it great?? :)

 

A slouchy bowl made by Cheryl Sleboda. You have to have chocolate in a booth right? The table runner beneath it is by Deb Kolar, I'll get a better photo when my booth arrives home.

A slouchy bowl made by Cheryl Sleboda. You have to have chocolate in a booth right? The table runner beneath it is by Deb Kolar, I’ll get a better photo when my booth arrives home (it’s still traveling via UPS).

 

A box bag made by Cheryl Sleboda. I shouldn't say it, but this is one of my favorite prints from INKED. (Don't tell the others.)

A box bag made by Cheryl Sleboda. I shouldn’t say it, but this is one of my favorite prints from INKED. (Don’t tell the others.)

 

Whew! Big blog post! I’ve got two more about Market that I’d really like to share – the people and the art. Those will go up over the next few days. Thanks for sharing the experience with me and thanks again to everyone who made it happen!! :)

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i’ll be at quilt market – come visit me! :)

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If you’ve been visiting with me on Facebook or Instagram or even here, I’m sure you’ve noticed that I’ve been prepping to exhibit at Quilt Market for the first time. (I’ve not shut up about it, you’d seriously need to go out of your way to avoid it.)

I think this may be one of the hardest things I’ve ever done for my art career. I’m debuting five new products and launching a wholesale arm to my business. I pulled it together in four months and honestly? I’m excited and worried and giddy and scared all at the same time. I’ve obsessed everything to within an inch of it’s life so I’m confident that it’s as good as it can be. That’s a pretty good place to be.

The blog is going quiet until after Market is over. If you are interested at all in following along with the wild ride as it happens, I invite you to visit me at my Instagram account. My username is girllovespaint. I’ll be showing all the new products I’ve got there first before anywhere else. I’m not taking my laptop so blogging won’t happen until after I’ve regained the ability to stay awake after I get home (I expect to be tired).

I’m not attending Festival, only Market.

If you are coming to Market, please stop by and say hello! Here’s all my details:

Smudged Textiles Studio

Booth #1562

Schoolhouse presentation: “Break It Apart: How to Get More out of the Patterns You Sell” on Friday October 24 from 5:30pm-6pm (I’ll have chocolate and fabric and I’ll be sharing).

Keep your fingers crossed for me that it all goes well and I’ll be back here in a bit to share all the details – woo! :)

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fling paint, make buttons, give gifts

Usually when I hear that people are already making holiday gifts, I cringe and quickly find something else to think about. But really? Making small gifts now is a pretty good idea. And Interweave is making it easy for you, thought I’d give you a heads up.

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These addictive little buggers are a combination of some super easy paint flinging and quick assembly to create fun gifties. Interweave gathered a few of their Gifts issues together (including the one that has the article I wrote on how to make these), the supplies you need to make them and put them all in a kit.

There’s nothing not to like about these and after having made close to a hundred of them, I can say that they are super easy. So grab a kit and get flinging!! :)

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where i stand sunday

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I stare down at the utilitarian mat and imagine filling each circle with a different pattern, color, texture, daydream. It’s an obsessive shape for me, one that I find endlessly fascinating and work into nearly every composition I create. It is the promise of endless opportunity contained in a simple clear shape.

 

Where I Stand is an ongoing photo essay examining the different places I spend my life standing. Too often we take for granted the everyday places we spend our lives walking on. The ground we tread on has its own stories to tell.

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throwback thursday: {untitled}

I did some photo only style posts back on my old blog. Just things I found interesting. I’m especially fond of this photo, I think architectural decay is one of the most fascinating things around. Texture and color galore and a strange mixture of electric energy in the letting go. So on this Throwback Thursday I give you one of my favorite wordless photo posts that I simply called “{untitled}”.

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p a u s e

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This pause has me looking at these good things in my life…

What I’m making…hand printed fabric for my fellow members of The Printed Fabric Bee. I’m a wee bit behind (if by that you understand I mean two themes behind). Feels good to have paint in my hair again.

What I’m readingThree Graves Full. I’m a horror fiction fan. More the Twilight Zone-ish type, not gore. I just started reading this one but it’s good so far and since it’s coming up on Halloween, seemed a good time to start a new book.

What I’m eating…cider mill donuts. (Isn’t everyone?)

What I’m wanting…an Oliso Smart Iron. In yellow because it’s happy. A new ironing board and iron are high on the list of studio items to upgrade

What I’m hoping for…more cuddle time with Carter. Napping on the sofa with that dog is the cure for anything that ails me. :)

 

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