Friday, January 30, 2009

Spinning, spinning...

Thank goodness this week is over! I have been through a bit of a roller coaster with my day job over the past few days and it has left me exhausted. All I can think right now is that I am greatly looking forward to this weekend and the uninterupted work time in my studio.

I'm still not really sure what designs I want to run with. But, I'm going to try something totally out of character for me, and just jump in somewhere and see what happens. (Normally, I need it all planned out before I get started.) With any luck, it'll work out in my favor, because I'd really like to start making real all of these rambling ideas in my head.

So, my friends, I hope your week was less taxing than mine and that you have a good weekend ahead as well.

Oh, and, P.S... There are still a few pieces on sale in my etsy shop...

Sunday, January 25, 2009

The view is always so beautiful from a bike...

It was grey and drizzly most of the weekend, which kept the traffic down and the campground empty. And, while we had to ride through a lot of urban sprawl, we found parts of Orange County that haven't been paved over yet! Two little days and it felt like we had traveled an entire world away.

Russ' photos here and here.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Stories and Sounds

For Christmas, I gifted my Dad a book of doodles and thoughts on creativity by Jim Henson. A few days ago, he emailed me a quote from the book that I have been mulling over. It may heap a bit of pressure upon artists' shoulders, but it's really quite beautiful to think about:

"An artist gives people back a part of themselves – the stories and sounds, the feeling of what it’s like to be alive."

This weekend, Russ and I are off on our bikes again for a mini camping adventure. I have a feeling this quote will follow me out to O'Neill park and back as I continue pondering new jewelry designs in my head.

Enjoy your weekend and all of its stories!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

It's kinda cloudy right now...

After such a delightful weekend, I must confess that this has been a tough week for me. I think it's a given that all artists have slump periods, when creativity seems to not want to cooperate with you, when you question where you are and what you're doing, when sitting on the couch with a nice dark beer sounds like the best plan ever. Such has been my week. And, while frustrating, I'm trying to not fight it and let it teach me what it has to teach.

Which is to say that last week's Project Runway challenge just sort of fell apart. I found a shirt, I cut it up, I followed an idea, and it just didn't work out for me. So, I had to shelve it and move on. I thought I would probably give up on this week's challenge too. But, in the middle of the couch-sitting, my brain started working again.

Alisa set this week's challenge to Wall to Wall Fashion, a.k.a. use only materials found at home. I looked around my apartment and found a giant mess of bikes and to-do lists. And I thought, ah-ha!

It's a big mess of a brooch, but I quite like it. Bicycle inner tubes stitched together with a collage of my torn-up to-do lists on top and two pink buttons to finish it off.

Other challenge participants: Lora Hart and Mike and Rachelle. Alisa's to follow.

Edit: Check out Rachelle's own brooch and Alisa's necklace.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

More sketches

Working on more sketches today. Having a hard time figuring out what I want to make next...

Friday, January 16, 2009

Time for a bit of change...

I've been using the beginning of this year as an opportunity to look very critically at my work - what I like, what I'd like to change, what comments I've heard from folks that I'd like to incorporate, etc. And, in so doing, I've identified several pieces that I'm not going to replicate. Which means that the following are all going on SALE...

Head on over to my etsy shop and take advantage of this opportunity to get some highly unique one-of-a-kind pieces for much less than I would normally price them.

I am also going to start offering sterling silver chains to hang your pendants on, for those of you who would prefer a chain to the silk thread. I'm still researching this, but know that it's in the works.

And what would a time of change be without a great new haircut? I think she lopped off six or more inches and I LOVE it!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Is it Thursday already?

Oof... this has been a busy week for me. Although, in retrospect, I'm not really sure why. Don't you love that?

Anyway, I have been puttering around, working on a piece for the Project Runway challenge, but I have nothing to show for it yet. I wanted to cut up something that I didn't mind losing as a wearable article. Which, unfortunately, meant that I spent too much time sorting through piles of possibilities, instead of just diving in. But, I've got a long 3-day weekend ahead, which means lots of time to work. So, stay tuned.

A few other things that are happening in my world...

I joined Kit & Caboodle, an online network for contemporary jewelers. Think of it as Facebook for jewelry.

And I've started guest-posting on Wednesdays on Russ' Epicurean Cyclist blog. I've already got two posts up. If you're interested in bike touring, check it out. I get to be the women's point of view.

Also, I'm getting ready to put up a few pieces on sale, which really doesn't happen often. So, if you're interested in picking up a genuine Tangerine Treehouse something at a fraction of its usual price, check back over the next few days.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Branching Out

In an effort to branch out a bit, I've opened a new online shop at I'm still learning my way around, but so far I've been thrilled with the interface. Check it out.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

More one-a-week challenges...

Last spring, I joined in one of the one-a-week Project Runway challenges that Annie over at Imogene came up with. And, in spite of my somewhat hermit tendencies (and the fact that I don't have cable and can't actually watch Project Runway), I really enjoyed it.

Well, Alisa just announced that she's starting up the next round of challenges. And I think I'm jumping on the bandwagon again. I like the idea of pushing myself in a totally different direction as a way of getting my brain to think beyond what I've already done and inspiring new work.

So, here we go... The theme? The clothes off your back.

Hmmm... Can I change into something I don't mind tearing apart first?

Alisa is shooting to finish hers next Thursday, so I will too. Which is great, because it gives me this weekend to work.

Anyone else joining in?

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Sketching new ideas

I think that I am finally over the burn-out I've been feeling for the past while, because my mind is back to swirling over new ideas and designs. I'm excited to see where these take me, because they're a bit different.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

We had a blissful weekend...

We're back from our New Year's bicycling adventure. Each time we go on a bike tour, I'm always amazed at how the world just drops away. We were only gone for four days, but it felt like months (in the best sort of way).

We celebrated New Year's in front of a roaring fire while a heavy fog rolled in over the beach and campground...

We rode down some truly beautiful country roads, lined with oak and maple trees whose leaves were vibrant shades of red and orange and gold and yellow...

Past acres and acres of farmland and vineyards...

We had breakfast in the small town of Guadalupe, which looks like it just stepped out of the Wild West. We stayed in an old hotel in Santa Maria, in the same room where Gregory Peck once stayed. We met lots of really lovely people along the way, that restored our hope in humanity.

In all, it was a truly wonderful trip and I am thankful that my stomach returned to normal in time for all of the hill-climbing. :)

For all the shots of us actually cycling down the road, head over to Russ' flickr.