Wednesday, September 19, 2018

My Life Is Flying!!!

        My life seems to be flying at me.  Saturday we move my basement studio to the first floor as I have trouble getting down the stairs and want to create and teach again.  BTW- anyone available who would like to pitch in we begin moving things around 10 am, doughnuts and pizza for payment.  Then I prepare for a doll conference and I leave Wednesday.  That will be great fun as I am a student not a teacher, however I will know where nothing is for packing as it will all be in boxes that I hopefully labeled well. Before leaving I need to gather goodies to make at least 1 auction basket, print a single page pattern for their welcome bags AND I want to put something in the bags that advertises me in a way that they will all want to buy my patterns and take my online classes. 

        THEN when I return home Monday October 1st I have to start working on my craft show that will be here Nov. 10 & 11.  I need to unpack the studio so I can find stuff I already have in stock to sell, find supplies to make new stuff, and all the fun stuff that goes with planning the event.  At least there is a month before that is due.  Then it will be Christmas in about 5 minutes and Parker will be entering high school in ten!  I'm exhausted already, but the conference will be great!  I have the hotel room to myself a couple nights so I can hand at the bar with the girls or veg in my room with cable TV.  No cooking no unpacking, no making my bed.  Ahhhhhhhhhh... I need this!

Thursday, August 30, 2018

Tape Measures and Scissors

       Where did all this stuff in my studio come from?  Honestly, I'm thinking that it mates at night and leaves me with multiples of almost everything.  Lets not even think about the fabric.

       I once asked my husband, "Just how many tape measures do you need?"  His quick retort was "How many pairs of scissors do you need?"  Well of course I tried to justify it by saying, "I buy extras for students to use.  There was sort of a hrrump sound and then we began a new conversation.  Actually I really wanted to know how many he needed.  Since there was no specific answer I asked everyone, I mean EVERYONE to get him a tape measure for Christmas.  I guess he learned my questions about building things sometimes do have a purpose after he got more than a dozen tape measures for Christmas.

       As for the scissors, yes, I have many.  Many for fabric, many for tiny cuts of fabric, several for embroidery, several for paper including the ones that make the fancy little edges and I could go on.

      Then, this past year for Christmas he bought me a set of scissors.  There's like 5 or 6 of them - I'm not sure because I've never even opened the box.  I don't even know if they are for paper or work on fabric.  I'll break into them when I start teaching from my home studio again, hopefully in January.

       So, I am very excited to attend the Windy City Doll Workshops at the end of September.  I am actually taking a class with Inez Brash, who only lives 15 minutes away.  When we get together we tend to do lunch and no dollmaking, which is a shame because there's so much more in her head than I could ever learn and these days I'm sure I'd forget more than half of it.

       So, to make a long story short, (I know, too late!) I just looked at the class supply list.  Guess what?  What do you think she wants us to bring?  Not one, not two but THREE pairs of scissors.  And where are my scissors?  Packed up and somewhere between the 2 studios.
So, I just ordered a new set of scissors from Amazon.



Friday, August 24, 2018

Bit by Bit

       Mega thanks to my son Shawn!  As I pack the studio he carries stuff upstairs.  Of course currently it's all staged in the living room with an exercise bike in the middle of it but it's great seeing at least some of my stash upstairs in what will be the new studio.  I'd move a lot faster if I wasn't having trouble with migraines that wipe me out for the day!  No fun at all!

        Anywhoo, Shawn guesses this is about one tenth of my stash!  Currently there is more on the opposite wall, and the exercise bike.  I still have a lot to do.  Tomorrow while I'm at Doll Club I hope the guys can bring up the empty pattern cabinets.  Then I can fill them with fabric, emptying more totes and boxes to refill in the basement.  I'd like to start classes in October, so I need to get on the stick!  And I'm thinking about a craft show in November if I can find enough stuff to sell and include other vendors.  More on that later.

Thursday, August 16, 2018


       After conversations with Shawn, my son and Craig, my Dear Hubby, they convinced me that certain pieces of furniture would never fit through the turns to a hallway to get to the two bedrooms.  So I spent yesterday afternoon redesigning each room, this time actually using a tape measure. I think I can fit everything in. I do have 3 closets available to me.  One has shelves on one end so I can add a 36 inch wide storage shelf inside.  There is a closet in the living room with shelves that I think will house all things that are paper crafts except rubber stamps.  We'll see.  I am likely to change my mind several times before it is all said and done.  LOL!

Wednesday, August 15, 2018


         Wow! two posts in one day!

        I decided you need to see just how much fabric I am talking about here.  This is the fabric that has made it upstairs so far, except there is two additional totes that were too shy to pose for the photo.  The apple boxes hold a lot more fabric than you can imagine!  There is a lot more fabric still in the studio, including the box of all the great stuff I have bought in the past two years but not used.  It's a BIG box, too.  Can you see I easily need to make at least 40 new dolls?!  I don't even open emails from Michaels, JoAnn's or Hobby Lobby anymore!  There is definitely no room at the Inn.
       Like  I said... this does not include all the plastic drawers full of the fabrics I "like best."  Most fabrics are 1/4 to 1/2 yard pieces to begin with, and I did come across many smaller pieces which proves I do actually create with fabric.

So... It's Wednesday...

       I have been trying to post every Wednesday for the past few months so here I am again.  My son Shawn is completely moved in (home from 5 1/2 years in Chicago) and when I work on packing up the studio to move upstairs he carries boxes and totes right away so I get instant gratification.  Craig and Shawn discussed some of my cabinets and such and are trying to figure out how to get them where I want them.  I want to use 2 bedrooms for general supplies and then the living room as my classroom with all the little bits of stuff I use all the time like pens, pencils, beads, tools, the sewing machine, and whatnot.  But now I have to re-evaluate and start imagining all over thanks to small doorways and sharp turns with very little space.  Rah.  I went over all this in my head many times and had everything exactly how I wanted it.  Now, I get to do it again.  Shawn took measurements for me so maybe I should start there.  LOL!  You can tell I have the artistic mind as I should have started with measurements and not dreams.

       So, I'm beginning to think about weekend workshops and weekly classes as well as new on line classes.  What would you like me to teach?  I am currently wanting to do another mixed media canvas based piece like The Harvest Queen, below.  

       I want to choose a different color theme, of course, and I'm kicking that around.  I think it might be for the bathroom students would use, so that may help me figure things out.  We'll see.  The Harvest Queen currently hangs in my kitchen, which is painted pumpkin with dark green counter tops.  I think she looks great there amidst my Green Man shelf and my Green Woman head sculpt.

        In packing I emptied two cabinets full of fabric.  These are pattern cabinets from when Sew-Fro closed about 100 years ago and I have always had fabric in them.  So I touched every piece of fabric as I packed and OMG!  Wow!  Do I have a lot of gorgeous fabric!  I have absolutely have no excuse not to immediately make 40 dolls!  Then there are the additional drawers with the "good fabric" and there were two smallish boxes full of the fabric I bought from E-Quilter over the last two years because their newsletter enticed me.  Their advertising is very effective and that's all I have to say about that.

        My current patterns and online workshops are all available at my ETSY site as well as Craftsy, Doll Street and A For Artistic.  What I want to know is what do you want to learn now?  For live classes I can teach techniques and/ or complete dolls.  For on line classes I believe a finished item is the best option.  The great news about on line classes is now that Shawn is back home he can set me up to video my projects and edit them instead of me taking photos at each step along the way.  I'm very excited about that as I've wanted to for years, but my first son, Brian does sound not video, so he couldn't get me going.

        So, what's your desire to learn?  Hit me with your best shot.  Challenge me!  I can't wait to dive in, except first I have to get things upstairs and put away.

Friday, August 10, 2018

Oldie But a Goodie

       Here's an oldie but a goodie I just adore.  Something about the large brown eyes and orangey-blonde hair that makes me sigh just to look at her.  Another doll I wish I kept!  Her name is Elizabeth Anne Golden and her body is from my Embellished Angel pattern but her face and costume are her own.

Here's a full view.

       Sorry my weekly post is late.  We spent last weekend in Chicago collecting Shawn, my 31 year old baby boy and are trying to settle him in here with us.  We are thrilled to have him here, and he and my husband are project buddies which probably means sometime there will be more drywall dust in my future.  There's nothing needed or planned, it's just inevitable!  Lack of need has never stopped the two of them. 

       The studio move has slowed.  I over stretched something in my hip and now stairs are more unpleasant than ever.  I'm considering driving around from the first floor garage to the ground level entry to the basement studio just to get back to work.  I really want my studio upstairs and to get back to teaching!