Monday, November 29, 2010

Bonnin Designs Holiday Gift Guide

As an editor for Rare Bird Finds, I scour the web daily to find my readers unique home and kitchen accessories. So here, on my personal blog I wanted to share with my readers businesses and the products that they sell and I just adore in a Holiday Gift Guide. Many of these businesses, I have purchased products from, love, and therefore want to share with you these original businesses, Others, I have written reviews on and covet. And lastly, I personally know all but one of the owners of these businesses and can attest that they are great people and care tons about their products and the customers that they sell to. That's who I want to give my money to! Don't you? I hope you enjoy what I've put together. Please visit these sites and see what else they have.

Sommer Designs - Violet vines Linen Apron on Sale, plus free gift. This would make a great hostess gift.

Fiberphile - MCN Worsted True Heart Yarn. Knit or crochet a great scarf for a friend, or get the yarn for someone you know that knits. About 2 skeins would make a great scarf, one skein for a hat.

 Found and Made Designs - Owl, vintage chandelier crystal necklace. This would be the perfect gift for  a stylish friend or family member.

 Hearts and Laserbeams - Sit Happens Dog Tee. You know a dog lover and this is the gift for them. They would really appreciate that you thought of their dog.

 JustJenn Designs - Sh*t List. I know everyone has one. Give this with a set of fun pens to a co-worker. Done.

 Mareike Auer - Dog Lover print. The clean simple lines of this art would be appreciated by any dog loving artsy friend.

Meringue Bake Shop - Cupcakes! They are available in so many flavors. These are available in Southern California and delivered fresh. What a perfect corporate gift, order some for a holiday party, or get some for yourself.

Michelle Caplan - Norah6 Mixed Media Collage Portrait. She also does amazing commissioned pieces. You know a dancer? Perfect gift!

 Mud Puppy - Modern White Baby Head Vase. Give a little humor to anyone! I have one of these and people love it!

 Nan Lawson - Love is a Book 8x10 print. A reader would love this hanging in their home.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Patchwork Show Santa Ana - Today

Today from 11-5 in Santa Ana at Main and Buffalo is Patchwork Indie Arts and Crafts Festival. You will be amazed at all of the talented crafters, artists, food, and entertainment and it's FREE. Please come out and enjoy the beautiful sunny day. Bring your pet, because I will be taking pet portraits for one of a kind custom mixed media art pieces. They make great gifts!! I also have some amazing deals and fun gifts for the holidays; clothes, mixed media art, vintage silverware garden  markers and cheese knives, cupcake jewelry and more.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Easy Custom Lamp Shade Tutorial

Let's just say that my daughter kinda ruined a lamp I had by messing up the lamp shades. No problem I thought. I'll just go out and replace them. Yes them. 2 shades. After 4 lighting stores, several department stores and even a lamp shade outlet, no luck because of the size that they are. So leaving the last store, I thought "time to get creative". And I had just the idea.

I grabbed a vintage feed sack that I had laying around and with spray adhesive, sprayed the shade, wrapped a lampshade in the feed sack and trimmed it to size with scissors.

Then the other one. No special technique needed, just confidence. I like the way it turned out. Don't you?

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Great Place for Getting Handmade Gifts for the Holidays

I'm really excited to be part of The Patchwork Show. I will be at both locations selling my applied vintage clothing and accessories plus many special items made just for this show. It's the perfect place to get handmade gift items for those on your gift list. 

I also will have a pet portrait "studio" set up to take free pictures of your pet with purchase of a mixed media pet portrait, on site.

So don't forget to bring your adorable furry friend to get a portrait that will last for years to come.

The patchwork indie arts & festival showcases over 75 local independent artists, crafters and designers in an outdoor setting. come down and eat; drink from local cafe; restaurant booths as you listen to tunes and peruse goods from the best southern California creators. look; shop... clothing for men, women and kids, handbags, accessories, art, ceramics, home goods, garden finds, plushies, jewelry, paper goods, edible treats, pet gear, crochet; knit goods, kits; patterns, bath; body goodies & more. check out our bike valet, eco-gift wrapping station; diy crafting tables for adults & kids. And it's free to get in.
WWW.PATCHWORKSHOW.COM for details and exact location



Monday, November 08, 2010

White Decor DIY Project

I was watching The Nate Show the other day and he made a project that had the perfect tie-in to the theme in the last post regarding the white trend in decor. He painted animal figurines in white primer which made the item look like a porcelain white bisque fired item. I had to do this. 

I got a .50 cent pedestal bowl from an estate sale this weekend.  It was a charcoal color. I think the color would have been fine, but I was considering using it for my display for The Patchwork Show. If I put a white bowl of items out, it would enhance the look of the items, rather than a dark, dreery black bowl. so I simply sprayed it with white primer. Isn't it fantastic?

Friday, November 05, 2010

White: Trend in Decor

I've noticed in catalogs, on the internet, and even in my local antique store, the trend right now in home decor is white. This past weekend I went into an antique store that used to be many vendors with their goods strewn all over. Much to my surprise, it was completely different; it was a merchandising heaven. And I noticed white. A lot of white. I thought I'd share with you what I completely fell for.

Below are some ideas of current home decor accessories in white:
Z Gallerie

Z Gallerie

West Elm

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Knitting Again Feels Right...and Left

So many things to make and do that knitting kind of fell by the wayside. I haven't knit since last year. Can't believe that but it's true. So true that I forgot how to cast on and realized I was knitting left handed and then had to change back to Continental. That was 1/4 through this project. It just felt sort of wrong. I'm in the zone again and made these handwarmers by Purl. I had intended to make the fingerless glove version of this pattern but never did and then when this pattern came out without fingers, I knew I had to make them. So I did.

Next project?

Friday, October 15, 2010

I Dream of Calder

calder_airport.jpg (500×320)
Calder Mobile at JFK Airport

Ever since learning about Alexander Calder in Art History in high school, I have always dreamed of having my own Calder or even Calder-esque mobile. I was struck by the floating bold shapes and colors.

I finally found a similar type mobile by Flensted and have a great place to display and admire it; in my entry hall. My dream has been realized.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

My Favorite Ghost Town

The old school house, now an artist gallery and studio space
Jerome, AZ has been my favorite place ever since I was in high school. It's the largest ghost town in America. Once a busy mining town, now a fabulous place to visit for a day trip or even a nice weekend.

An old Safeway sign preserved but it's a boutique now

I love it for the old architecture and the photo ops. Surprises are around every corner.

I stayed a night in Jerome recently and was pleased to see that it has more life, but the old is still preserved. It's a very successful destination spot with quaint hotels, wine bars, restaurants, boutiques, and a wonderful artist presence throughout.

Jerome has got such character and quirkiness that during our early morning walk around town we could really stop and admire.

And for me, it was great to see that what was left of old hotel was still protected because I took this same exact picture when I was in high school. And I took it again 2 weeks ago.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

19 Years Married

19 years married. Happy Anniversary to us. That's just amazing to me. Not the fact that we've been married to each other for 19 years, but that we have been married that long. Seems like yesterday that my daughter was born and a week later, not looking or feeling my best, wearing a nursing bra and a big outfit, we went out for a quick romantic dinner to celebrate our 1st anniversary before Emily needed her next feeding. Now she's in college and my son is in high school. Where has the time gone?
But, the best part of an anniversary and especially this one, is dessert. We were surprised by my dear friend Kristin and her wonderful husband Lyle with this anniversary cake that she made for us. Seriously! We are so lucky to have a friend as a baker. Though, known for her cupcakes, I was blown away by this beautiful cake!
And how did Kristin know my favorite flavors? This is a pistachio 3-layer cake filled with apricot gelee' and marzipan. On top is chocolate ganache. Whoa! It was delicious and very much appreciated. Thanks again Kristin!

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

It was Stormy

This past weekend was one I will never forget. I had the opportunity to reunite with gymnastics teammates and coaches that I hadn’t seen in 30+ years at the gymnastics camp I used to go to each summer.  Some of these girls and coaches I hadn’t seen since I was 10 years old, others I hadn’t seen since I was 14 or 15.
 Stormy, spotting me on a full twisting back with Mike Dennison looking on

Stormy and a typical trip in the Trans Van to a meet (photo by Sheryl Gardner May)
As I child and later a teen, I was on the Desert Devils gymnastics team in Tempe/Scottsdale, AZ. I spent at least 3 hours a day and Saturdays at the gym training with these girls. They were like my sisters, the coaches; my adult role models. We would laugh together, travel together, compete together, go to the lake waterskiing together, and cry as well, together. I watched with awe at the older gymnasts, hoping one day I could be as good as they were. I also was like a big sister to the younger gymnasts that perhaps thought the same about me.  
Saturday, as I entered Super Camp on the now wide gravel road, I thought how much quicker it was to get up here these days since the roads were no longer muddy and full of very sketchy dips and holes.  The Aspen trees were holding the camp in their loving embrace.  Past the pond we used to dive into and swim to the slide after running miles just as the sun would break, to achieve the status as a member of the Polar Bear Club. Yuck. The water was a dark green, almost black. It hadn’t changed in all of these years. How did we do that?

Arriving to camp the first thing I did as I got out of the car was close my eyes and take a big breath in through my nose, smelling that familiar again smell, the one I always loved, the smell of Aspen trees in the Mingus Mountains. I wished I could bottle that smell.

The reunion began. Many people were there. Many I knew, some I didn’t because they weren’t even born when I quit. I wished other teammates were there that couldn’t make it, but I felt that I represented them.  The one person missing who should have been there; the person that started it all, was our head coach, Stormy.  There was definitely a void I felt with him physically not there. You see he would have loved to have been there, but he passed away in a small plane crash in 1995.  
former Desert Devil coach Craig Kirby

During the reunion, we spent some time having a special memorial to Stormy. I know he was there listening. Everyone knew it as well. At 2:26 every summer it would rain. It was about that time we did the memorial.  The clouds rolled in, the thunder began, the wind blew in and out. We shared memories. Towards the end, the sun came out. The rain never came to Super Camp that day.  Stormy was there and wanted to spend time with us. At the end of the day, we left camp in our cars. As we drove, not even to the end of camp, there was hail on the ground, marble sized hail.  And driving further down the mountain, the hail on the ground was thick, like snow. A blanket of protection for everyone to get off the mountain safely.  

In the 2 days we spent at camp this past weekend sharing stories about our time together and catching up on these past years we hadn’t, one thing that was evident was the pride we had at the end of the weekend knowing that we were part of a very special group of people that had accomplished so much and had such a great time doing it.

“Once a Desert Devil, always a Desert Devil.” (Quin Shannon, former Desert Devil coach)