121 articles Articles posted in Things of Beauty

The Butterfly

This butterfly alighted on my finger the other day. Poor thing had a broken wing. Butterflies are so magical to me. I never tire of watching them land and gently lift and drop their wings in a simple but majestic act before flitting away again. Anyway, while it hung out on my finger, I grabbed my camera and snapped a photo. Lesson: always have your camera nearby, you never know when a butterfly will decide to land you.

I’ve been busy this week with design jobs and getting ready for Craft Night. It’s not too late if you still want to join the fun! I also am continuing my Mother’s Day week tradition with some great interviews with wonderfully creative moms. You won’t want to miss my interviews with Jordan Ferney of Oh Happy Day, Suann Song from Simple Song, Michelle Dupont, Gabrielle Blair from Design Mom, and Disney from Ruffles and Stuff. See you then!

Beautiful Papercuts

( Above papercut artwork by Helen Musselwhite )

I’m always amazed to see what can be done with paper. I felt inspired to show some beautiful examples of papercut work at it’s finest. Enjoy!

Made by Julene specializes in paper lettering crafts, which have been purchased as gifts for weddings, birthdays, and other occasions. (Found via Illusion )

Well-crafted, dimensional and diverse paper letters by Jerome Corgier. More examples can be viewed at his blog. (Found via Illusion )

Dimensional scenes by artist and illustrator, Helen Musselwhite ( Found via PapieroweLove )

An owl mask – Part of the Paper Cut Project by fine artist, Nikki Salk.

One Flower, Many Ways

First of all, I’ve got to say I’m just floored by all the amazingly kind comments from my last blog post. You guys inspire me! Thank you. I was just shaking my head reading them just because I couldn’t believe how kind they were. You made my month year.

So on to the good stuff. This shape has been reappearing alot in my designs lately and I’ve been slowly working on things that incorporate it. So here’s a little tutorial on how to make your own and run with it! You can really do so much with it. Below I made the larger one with paper in 1″ size circles. The tiny one is made with hole-punched dots. If you make the flower shape large enough, it would also make great paper coasters if you coat it with mod podge.

Here’s how to make em.

Loved this excerpt from one of Robert Frost’s poems. Seemed to fit the photo so well. But isn’t it lovely! Let me show you what else you can do with it!

Hanging Decor.
How to make it: this is a large dimensional piece I made by interlocking two flower shapes together (see below photo for example on how to do this). They’d be great for party decorations!

A necklace.
How to make it: Use fabric stiffener (make sure you coat both sides of the fabric to make it really stiff) to stiffen the fabric so you can punch through it with a craft punch. I used a 1″ craft punch. Then I created a second flower (no stiffener) and hot glued it on top of my stiffened flower. You can see I just used some hemp cord to make a necklace out of it. But you could also use a pretty chain. These would also make beautiful earrings!

Hairpin.
How to make it: See above tutorial on how to make the large flower. The tiny center is made of hole punched dots. Just hot glue or sew onto a hair clip or bobby pin. This would also make a great pin for your coat!

Whew! Sorry that was so lengthy. Hope you enjoyed it though. Happy creating!

Art From Everyday Objects: Snow + Matchsticks

So in case you missed it, the south got a huge blizzard this last Wednesday which dumped 14 inches of snow. Today they forecasted more snow. Oh goody. I love it for a day and then I’m ready for it to be gone.  However, I was inspired today to make a SNOW CAKE. And let me tell you how fun it was. It was F-U-N! I felt like Edward Scissorhands sculpting a masterpiece, snow flying everywhere by the knife I was wielding. I think if I lived in a colder climate, I would be an snow sculptress.

Anyway, onto the project. I am riding on the matchstick wave and created a cute little cake topper thingy. Just print out my design (PDF download) and cut into a small strip and hot glue each end onto a matchstick. You could also use your matchsticks to make cake flags.

The quote is french, by philosopher Jean-Jacques Rousseau – “Aimer et être aimé sera la grande affaire de toute notre vie” and translates “To love and be loved will be the greatest event in our lives.”

Oh and the cake is still in my backyard if you want a piece. :) And yes, that is actual snow falling in the picture above.

Color Burst Baby Shower

Hey ya! Today is my b-day and my gift from my husband is FREE TIME with no kids. So I’m blogging! Ha! It’s been a great day so far.

Anyway, I’ve felt so fulfilled lately since I’ve been able to work on some creative things again. Recently, I hosted a baby shower for a friend of mine and I got to work on invitations and decor. I loved it! Many of my friends asked how I did it with a new baby…my answer: I planned a month and a half in advance, and did a little bit each day. Here are some of the highlights:

Invitations – I loved how these turned out. They are bright, colorful and so pretty.

Favors and party decor – I really didn’t spend a dime on decorations. I used colored paper that I had on hand to create pinwheels of different sizes, large paper flowers, confetti garland and a name garland. It’s amazing what you can do with paper!

More pinwheels! So easy to make and so inexpensive, but really creates a festive look!

Cupcakes by a friend of the expectant mama’s, and beautiful flowers.

Let me know if you have any questions about any of the decor…I can post a tutorial if I get enough requests. *Wink*

Utterly Beautiful

I’ve blogged about Utterly Engaged before, and I thought I would post some inspiration I found from their most recent issue.

beautiful product tags from lovely bridal shop in New York // creative display at the lovely store // Lace and painted paper flowers // artistic cookies by sweet heather anne

If you haven’t looked at an issue, check it out…even if you aren’t getting married it’s a terrific source of inspiring and beautiful ideas.

I Love: Kenya

As my husband embarks on an amazing 10-day trip to Kenya with Compassion International, I thought it would make me feel closer to him and his adventure by posting some beautiful things inspired by and from this African country.

Photo left: Samburu Girl in Full Traditional Dress

Amazing jewelry from Kenyan artisans (launching exclusively with Urban Outfitters in Spring 2009)

Maasai Princess // African Dress

Liquid Gold – a gorgeous strand of African Trade Beads from Kenya // Handcarved, handpainted wooden hearts

I love Africa! The bright bold colors, patterns and textures…and the people! So precious and beautiful. So while I can’t travel thousands of miles this time around, I hope to visit in the future.

Where are you dreaming of going someday?

Why I Love Autumn

Summer is my favorite season. Fall is a close second. Our days get shorter, the scarves come out, and oh, the beautiful dark rich colors! It makes me want to run to the store for some cocoa, but it’s still 80 degrees in my office. Oh well, I know the cool temps will come soon enough. Here are some inspiring photos, one of them is a new product available in my etsy store, for a limited time.

fall

BOO Cake Topper by me // Velvet Pumpkins // Pumpkin Baskets // Amy Atlas tablescape // Vintage Feather Hair Piece

Cutest Handmade Birds

Anyone getting married soon? I found the cutest little handmade birdie cake toppers. They are PRECIOUS! Ashley Anna Brown is the creator of these little wonders, and each one is unique.

bird

Favorites from Lush Bella

I stumbled on this flickr favorites set from Lush Bella and was hypnotized by all the pretty eye candy. Lately in my estate sale shopping I’ve been picking up little miniature objects and random items just because I think they are neat but certainly not for any practical use. These photos are rich in small objects that are unique and have a story in and of themselves.

lush

I like how she’s created real life collages of these trinkets and made them into cohesive piece of art through photography.

lush2

Just lovely!