Saturday, January 30, 2010


I sketched this from the bus. The little painting is my first time using gouache. I like the chalky texture, but it dries so quickly!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Crocheted Hairbands

I was inspired to make these by a customer who had one to keep her ears warm. I'm always reluctant to wear hats because they're too hot and limit my hairstyles, but I love these because then my ears don't get cold. I'm working on refining the pattern and then I'll be putting some on Etsy.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Wire-wrapped Rings

I've wanted to make rings for a while, and recently thought I'd try some techniques to showcase my paper beads as rings.

My first attempt was just using one bead, but I abandoned that and started using groups of three beads, with the same wire-wrapping method. I tried stacking them, but found that they naturally fell into a more staggered pattern. I also tried flattening the coil into a band using pliers, which I really liked.

Unfortunately, that type seemed to look better on its own than on my hand, so I tried stacking the beads for a more symmetrical look.

However, that made for a ring that was too wide and uncomfortable to wear. I returned to my previous design, but without the wrapped cage part, since I wanted to highlight the graceful snuggling of the focal beads.

I like how the photo turned out, but I thought the ring itself looked a little too handmade. Then I tried holding both staggered rings next to each other and realized they made a pretty leaf pattern, which I then tried to replicate by using five staggered beads instead of three.

It's difficult to effectively photograph these leaf rings because the motif wraps around. They're very sweet though, and also comfortable. I've got to do a bit more work to smooth out the technique, but overall I like what I came up with.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

City Cuff Bracelet

I recently made this bracelet as a gift. It's not currently for sale, although I may duplicate the design if there is interest.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Paper and Writing in Bergdorf's Windows

I mentioned Bergdorf's winter decorations in a recent post, and wanted to show some photos of their text theme.

I liked their overall Alice in Wonderland theme, with all the various things that were going on in each window:

What really caught my eye, though, was the use of book pages and folded paper for many of the props:

I like the last two the best; they're more sculptural and less busy. I've seen a lot of paper sculpture, but it was nice to have it in such a public venue.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Island Maps

I've been working on a new idea for map drawings. I've basically reversed the role of the ink; instead of making bodies of water, it instead makes islands, and then habitations are drawn in.

I love the impossibly long "bridges" and the way they intersect. I can completely imagine the kind of habitation that would grow up here. I think it comes from viewing photos of native towns during my visual research yesterday.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

What to do with 500 pieces of tissue paper

I recently acquired a whole ton of small pieces of tissue paper that had been used for packaging. Last night I decided to try and come up with some fun things to do with them.

I made some origami lotus flowers. Using the thin paper, I could make more petals than I can usually get out of normal-weight paper, so they're a bit fluffier, and also more delicate.

I sprayed one with clear spray, and one with iridescent paper spray. I like the iridescent one a lot. I glued a blue glass gem into it and made it into a pin. It's already up for sale on Etsy.

The one that got clear spray is still waiting to be posted -- but I'll put photos up here!

I also experimented with making tissue paper roses. Eventually I would find a way to attach them to a hair comb with some white winter twigs and perhaps some white feathers. I was really inspired by the interior decorations at Bergdorf's this winter, which were all lights and mirrors with white twigs and other adornments.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

New Year's Resolutions

Some of my goals for the new year are already almost in place, and some are more difficult to achieve, but I'm still going to make a list.

1. Post to both Etsy stores frequently. I'm trying to catch up with Valise, but due to recent sales I've got some restocking to do at Keep Creating as well. I hope that's always the case!

2. Sell at a boutique or co-op. I've got some applications in to local stores, but I need to find as much as I can. This may include branching out to other cities as well.

3. Find a studio space. This is a bigger step, but I think it would be awesome. My apartment currently doesn't have a space that I can paint or do big projects in, so I'm limited to small things. That isn't usually a problem for me, but mentally it's so much better to have a space. It would mean I'm committed to making things. And it would give me an instant artistic community.

That's all I'm currently thinking about craft-wise, but I'm sure I'll end up with more.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Winter Floral Designs

A selection of my designs from the last month:

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Nico Designs

This month's featured blogger on the EtsyBlogger team is Nico Designs. I like her blog and LOVE the bags in her Etsy store.

I also love her book cover tutorial on her blog. I rarely think to make book covers, but I got some adorable ones when I was in Japan. I think it's a more common practice there.

Friday, January 8, 2010

New Etsy Store

I am launching a new Etsy site specifically for my pieces with a more industrial/antique aesthetic. It has been aptly described as jewelry and accessories for steampunks to wear to the office, and if I didn't think that would confuse most people I would definitely use it as the tagline. I think it's the best way to sum up the look. It's an aesthetic I found myself working in most frequently, so I'm glad to be finally embracing it. Most of my new pieces will be posted there, so be sure to check it often. I've also added a box for it in the sidebar, so you can quickly see what kinds of things are up there. Enjoy and let me know what you think!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Monday, January 4, 2010

Bulletin Board Project

I needed some more space to pin notes and lists, and I had some unattractive framed pictures that a friend was getting rid of, so I made frame boards!

I cut squares of thin corkboard to fit in the frames, and taped them in right on top of the glass (because it was impossible to remove the pictures). Then I hung them up on either side of a mirror I had. I like the effect, although they are a little more wobbly than I would like.