Friday, June 29, 2012

A Creative Opportunity - Sharing What I Love

For some time now, I've been pondering my mission, which I created when I first began my blog and you can read in the sidebar:

"MY MISSION: to live a life rich in art-FULL creativity and to share and ENCOURAGE creativity with others in a heartfelt and meaningful way..."

Embellished bottle caps I've made will be used in other projects to come...

I have always lived my life with an abundance of art-FULL creativity, ever since I was a child, so when I see others who have stifled or blocked their own creativity, I want to encourage them to follow the creative impulses they have because I have witnessed, as well as experienced, the power of Art to heal age-old wounds...

ALL the arts have the power to heal - dance, music, painting, theater...

Of course, I share my own creativity here on my blog but I had been thinking of how I can encourage creativity in others and it looks like the creative opportunity I previously hinted about has finally arrived:

I'll be teaching a sewing workshop that involves BOOK MAKING!

How this opportunity came about is a bit of a winding story, so settle in and make yourself comfortable...

I have mentioned the artwork I've created for fundraisers for the non-profit City Hearts and I have forged a wonderful relationship with one of the fabulous women who run the organization. Her name is Jane and she teaches sewing to young girls in her neighborhood. For some time now, Jane and I have talked about collaborating on a class for her students...

My hand-bound book created for last years fundraiser for City Hearts - of course a heart is part of the design!

Jane asked if there was a way to teach a bookmaking class based on the book I made for last years fundraiser, which you can see in the picture above. However, her classes are primarily sewing classes, so I hit upon the idea to create a fabric book of fabric pages, using scraps of fabric. I made up a quick sample and here are some pictures of how it looks:

The blue fabric is from my bedroom curtains and the pink scrap is from a skirt I made and still wear...the zig-zag block will be rubber stamped with a meaningful word

The pink border, blue floral and gingham check scraps are from my grandmothers fabric stash that I now have...

The cover is made from heavy canvas and the pages are made from a variety of scraps I have in my sewing supplies. I call it my "Fabric Scrap Book" and it's literally filled with scraps of fabrics that have meaning in my life - some are from garments I have made and some are from my grandmother's supplies that I now have in my collection...

These fabric scraps were in my grandmother's stash...together they make a strong combination!

I kept some 'pages' blank so the students can write on them, embroider them or rubber stamp on them. I have begun to add a few rubber stamp designs to my book, but haven't taken any pictures of how it looks. I've also made a large cover to allow adding more signatures* into my book as time goes by...

More pink fabrics from Grandma Betty's stash...

I created a simple glossary of terms for the students so they can learn the lingo of bookbinding, such as "signature", "folio", and "colophon". Though we are working in fabric, this fabric book is still using some traditional book binding techniques!

The heavy canvas cover and a pocket for a paper tag that can be used for journaling later...

Sadly, Jane's sewing students will not be the first students for this workshop! It seems that Jane had the idea to teach during Earth Day/Spring Break but her students had conflicting spring break schedules so they were not all going to be available for this workshop at the same time. As a result, the workshop was shelved for a little while...

However, I felt that this workshop was wanting to take place somewhere and I found a location at a sewing machine repair shop I heard about for good and fast machine repairs. The repair shop has a little room for teaching, which I saw on my first visit. I went back to have a second machine repaired and that's when it occurred to me that I could teach my fabric book workshop at the repair shop. I pitched my Fabric Scrap Book idea to the shop manager and it was accepted!

I will now be teaching my first creative workshop and I'm very excited about this opportunity! Here are the details, in case you'd like to join the fun:

The workshop will take place at Kingdom Sewing and Vacuum Center located at  8923 Reseda Blvd, Northridge CA 91324

It will be held on Thursday July 19 from 11:00am until 2:00pm

You can go to the Kingdom Sewing website for more details about the workshop HERE - click on the 3rd Quarter newsletter and you will find it listed in the calendar of classes as "Fabric Scrapbooking". You can call them for information on how to register for the class =-)

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I really love how this sewing workshop connects to my values of my love for books and book-making, as well as my love of art and community. I'm certainly glad of the opportunity to practice my mission of SHARING and ENCOURAGING creativity in others. I hope it goes well enough to provide another opportunity to share what I know with others...

In the meantime, I'll be taking a little blog break for a few weeks to prepare everything I need for my first teaching opportunity, such as book samples, creating supply packets and figuring out the demos. However, I have a blogiversary at the end of the month, so I'll be back for some giveaway goodness to celebrate, as well as sharing how my teaching opportunity turns out, so be sure to stay tuned!


* - "SIGNATURE" = a group of pages that make up one signature and several signatures make up a book block; Wikipedia has a good page that describes book binding terminology, with images to help you see what goes where =-)

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Art Journal Spread for Brian and Some News...

Hello Dear Blog Readers!
I thought I'd share an art journal page I recently made for one of my fellow Orly Avineri workshop participants, Brian Kasstle of APaperBear, to show that I'm not just cleaning and clearing in my home 24/7! ;)

At a previous Orly workshop, Brian mentioned participating in a project called the 1001 Art Journals Project, which is being hosted by the author of the book "1000 Journals" and goes by the nom de plume "Someguy". "Someguy" has started the project of 1001 journals being created, then shared online at the 1001 Journals website.

Brian chose to have two traveling journals for his submission and I asked if I could create a spread in one of them. He graciously said yes and here is what I made for Brian:


This is the journal spread before I made a few small additions to it. You can view the details of this original below...


The scrap on the far right hand side of the page is cut from an old promotional card for a functional art gallery that used to reside in Bergamot Station, a gallery collective located in Santa Monica. I was ready to let go of the old postcard and see it take new form in the art journal...


I decided to use some decorative rub-on elements for a change of pace to my usual journal spreads...but then I felt that a few more elements were needed for the spread as a whole. Here is the new spread with two additions:


The additions may be small, but now it seems the two pages are reflecting back to each other. Here are the detail shots:


A paper ephemera circle purposefully cut to show off the pattern of the text is in the corner...


The addition of the butterfly makes this page feel less empty and little more colorful!

So you see, it's not all about cleaning and clearing in my humble abode, though, now that things are changing, it's hard to stop!

Something else I've been busy with these days is...

...preparing to teach my first creative sewing workshop!

Yes, I'll be teaching a fun and creative sewing workshop that will also incorporate my love of books. This workshop will held in July and I will share the details of it with you later this week so be sure to stay tuned!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

More Changes in My Home...

Hello Dear Blog Readers!

It has occurred to me that I forgot to thank you for your wonderful comments on my post about the changes taking place in my humble abode, so THANK YOU! Many of you sent wonderful messages and left very encouraging comments on that post and I'm so glad that some of you have found some inspiration to make changes in your own homes =-)

I've made a few more little changes in my home that I wanted to share with you...

I cleared out a lovely side table in the the hopes of selling it at the Glendale Community College Flea Market last Sunday but it was too big to take along on this selling trip. Here is how it looked against the wall the last time I posted a picture:

The lovely carved wood side table is on the left, but I am ready for something new in this room...

Cleaning out the side table in the hopes of selling it meant I could move a different piece of furniture I have to that part of my living room and this is how the room looks at this time (And yes, it will continue to change in the months to come!):


I was able to move a lovely vintage table between the two comfy chairs and place the mirror onto that small table. I could then move one of my floor lamps to be right over my preferred chair for reading or knitting in the evenings. I placed a fun wooden tool box on the floor that is currently holding some art books just under the small table:


I have been quite excited and energetic about the cleaning and clearing taking place and I'm looking forward to tackling a different part of my living space...

A very big window in my living space allows lots of light into the room and I love that =-)

I have a large window in my living space and this area was far more cluttered than this picture shows now. I had my two chairs in this space when I still had the love seat and the small table was between the chairs with the floor lamp over it all. However, it often felt like a tight fit. I have some new plans for this part of my humble abode and if all goes well, the changes might take place before the week is over!

Many things have been happening lately, such as selling my vintage goods at the Glendale Flea Market on Sunday. Though I couldn't take the side table to sell, I did make a few sales in spite of a quiet Sunday due to the Father's Day weekend. However there were still quite a few folks out looking and haggling and making purchases and some of the purchases were my goods! I made back my booth fee and then some, despite the quiet crowd, so my friend and I are going to return on Sunday July 15 to sell vintage goods again.

Selling at the Glendale Flea Market was a big goal I set during my time in Pete and Wendie's prosperity workshop and I'm so glad that I accomplished this big goal! Now I have to set a few new goals and teaching a creative workshop is one of them. I'm excited to say that I now have something in the works and I hope to share it with you all very soon...

I'm off to continue my cleaning and clearing to make room for more goodness in my life and I'll be sure to share it here with you all, so stay tuned!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Peony Love...

Have I ever mentioned how much I LOVE peonies??


I had been wondering when I would see peonies this year and began to fear that I might have missed the season - it is a pretty short season for peonies, I've learned...

Luckily, my dear boyfriend spied peonies being sold and bought me a bunch that I enjoyed all last week. I snapped quite a few shots of how much they bloomed while they were in my humble abode...


Just look at how GORGEOUS...


...LUSH...


...and COLOR-FULL these peonies are!

I hope your week blooms with vibrant, rich color...and CREATIVITY of course!

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Changing My Beliefs and My Space...

Hello Dear blog Readers!
There is a lot that has been happening in the past week I want to share with you...

I mentioned briefly that I was participating in another workshop hosted by my life coach Pete and his coaching partner Wendie and it was just as interesting as the previous workshop, though a little different.

They made some changes in the format since they will be conducting their first workshop to the public in August and they have a limited amount of time to work in. But there were some great additions to the workshop that I found quite helpful...

My Core Values from the first workshop - Fearlessness, Connection and Creativity; these values changed in the second workshop to Passion, Determination, and Achievement. These values will serve me well in the weeks to come!

The last time I did the workshop, I worked with my issues around money and learned that I have a problem with feelings of being worthy, which I was completely unaware of! This time,  I chose to work with the issue of my cluttered home. I somehow have the feeling that the two issues are connected ...

When we did an exercise working with our old thought patterns and limiting beliefs, a thought came out so strong that it surprised me:

YOU DO NOT DESERVE A NICE HOME IF YOU CAN'T KEEP IT CLEAN

Once I put that belief out in the open, I found no reason to continue writing - it was clear to me that this is a 'mob boss' limiting belief that is running the clutter show! I'm not even sure where this belief came from, though I have a sneaky suspicion it generates from my grandmother*...

I can say that this limiting belief, where ever it came from, has been keeping me from things I've wanted in my life - to invite friends for visiting, for play-dates, for knitting or for tea and it's kept me from having a space to begin teaching and sharing my skills and experience with others. The clutter in my home has kept me from these things because I fear the judgement that will come when people see how cluttered my home is (even if my dear Wise Woman sees it as 'eye candy'!)...

Case in point: the area between the dining space and the living space - boxes in piles as well as art supplies in piles on the table...

One of the big things I've wanted to change in my home is to move out a sad, tired, worn out old love seat to make space in my home...


It's too soft to be comfortable, it takes up much needed space and I've had to cover the old dirt with fabric to make it look cozy - it's high time it went out! However, I've had a difficult time getting it out of my home as my coach Pete has been hearing for the past few months, but that changed after the last workshop session...


We were given some great goal setting tools in the last workshop session and one of my goals was to finally get that old sofa out of my home once and for all! My goal was met within a matter of days!!

The truth of the tired old sofa hiding under fabric to make it look cozy - torn, worn and dirty =-\

The amount of space in my humble abode felt great once that tired old sofa was gone!

Space to rearrange some furniture in my home!

Another goal I made is to head out to the Glendale Community College Flea Market in June to "monetize the clutter" as one of the participants put it! I'm hoping to sell off some of the bulky goods belonging to my grandmother that I don't relish selling through my vintage Etsy shop, and I plan to sell off a few personal items that I no longer want to have in my home - I'm ready for some new art-full home style in my humble abode!

I love having these cozy chairs together for knitting or conversation, however the small side table to the left will be available at the flea market if you're interested!! ;)

My next home improvement goal is to begin organizing and especially LABELING my art supplies, which are held in various vintage tins I've been collecting for awhile. This goal feels like a small and do-able goal that could be accomplished within a few days...things are getting exciting for me these days!

I love working with my coach Pete and I love working with Wendie and together they are great coaches facilitating a fantastic workshop that can help you break through the beliefs that are holding you back from living a life of joy. If you are in the Los Angeles area, I highly recommend participating in the upcoming workshop in August!

I'm off to continue with the changes of my humble abode and I'll share the continuing changes as I go, so stay tuned =-)


* - maybe one day I'll share some of the true stories about the grandmother that taught me to sew and knit and has her name on my other Etsy shop - I have told a charming side of the story but there is sadly a darker side...