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Monday, October 28, 2013

Ready, Set, Shop!

O.k., I know Halloween hasn't even hit us yet but I am getting all geared up for the throng of Christmas shoppers that I hope will be pouring into St. Michaels Church in Cary, NC for their annual Holiday Fair on Saturday, November 9,2013.

There will be numerous items available to purchase from some of the areas most talented artisans.
So come on down and get a jump start on your Christmas shopping.  Please stop by my table and say
Hello :)

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Fuquay Varina Fall Arts and Crafts Festival!

It's almost here, Fuquay Varina's annual Fall Festival!
When:  Saturday October 26th 10-4:00 in downtown Fuquay Varina.
Come on down and check out all the fabulous creations from artists throughout  the state of NC and beyond!

A new place to call home!

As some of you may already know, Etsy is now allowing mass produced, manufactured items to be sold on their site starting January, 2014.
Small artisans such as myself are already having a hard time getting found on such a huge site as Etsy but by allowing the "Walmarts" to enter into this realm it's going to basically bury the small artists/artisans and in my opinion, hurt the integrity of Etsy.  As buyers, most of us go to Etsy to find one of a kind, unique, handcrafted or vintage items.  Weeding through garbage in search of those gems is going to be very time consuming.

This is why I'm slowly starting to build up my shop on Zibbet.  Zibbet is an online marketplace that is commited to supporting individual artists/artisans.  They have pledged that they will not sell us out by taking on mass produced, big box store items.

Please help me in spreading the word about this wonderful site.  By supporting this site you are in turn showing support for the art of handmade. ♥

Friday, May 31, 2013

Looking for unique bridal shower invitations, decorations, etc?  Then check out this talented Etsians shop.  
Her name is Julie and her shop is Things by JuJu

I absolutely love this corset design.  I can envision using it as invitations as well as for decorations, adorable!

Another one I love, and that I think would go great with the corsets are these damask hearts ♥
So head on over and enjoy her shop, you won't be disappointed!

Lazy Daze Art Festival,  Cary, NC

37th Lazy Daze Arts & Crafts Festival
Saturday, August 24, 2013
9 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Downtown Cary

Looking forward to doing the Lazy Daze festival again this year.  This is a great event with lots of talented artisans, musicians, great food and entertainment.  So plan on coming down to historic downtown Cary, NC on Sat. August 24th for a wonderful time! 
*Mention that you read about the event on my blog and receive a FREE gift!!

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Solid Perfume Refill Instructions

So your locket is looking a little empty?  No problem, I have step by step instructions complete with images so that you can get your locket refilled in no time!

The process is very simple.

Step 1:  Take the vial of solid perfume I have sent you, make sure the cap is on tight and place it in a pan of simmering water.  (The above photo showing my Brown Sugar & Fig fragrance is just for representation purposes, the same instructions apply to all my scents).

Step 2:  Let the vial stand in the simmering water until the solid perfume becomes a liquid, approximately 2-3 minutes.

Step 3:  Have your locket prepared for refilling prior to removing the vial from the pan as the perfume will start to harden pretty quickly.

Step 4:  If your locket is rounded on the back or does not open all the way in order for it to lay flat then simply place it on a tiny bed of rice or whatever other medium you prefer.  You want your locket to be level so that the perfume fills evenly.  

Step 5:  Pour the liquid into your locket.   If for some reason you should overfill your locket don't worry.  Simply wait for the perfume to harden and then clean up around the edges with a toothpick.  Always remember that you can refill the vial once the perfume has hardened if you want to start the process over at any time.

Step 6:  Here's a helpful tip, especially when working with smaller lockets.  Use a toothpick as a guide when  pouring the perfume in order to channel it directly where you want it to go.

As I stated previously, do not worry if you have some over spill, just wait for the perfume to harden and clean up around the edges as needed.   Enjoy!

A few of  my newest creations!

Broccoli Summer Salad

Ahhh,  it's starting to feel like summer finally!  I don't know about you but for me summer and food equates to lots of wonderful salads.  I am always on the lookout for new salad recipes, I found this one the other day.  Last night hubby grilled out bar-b-que chicken and I made a little potato salad and this new broccoli salad, it was a hit!  The photo isn't all that fabulous but the taste definitely was, hope you enjoy it as well!

1 head of broccoli, cut into bite sized pieces
½ c. raisins
¼ c. red onion, chopped
2 t. white sugar
2 t. white vinegar
2 t. water
½ c. mayonnaise
1 c. sunflower seeds
3-5 slices of bacon
1. place bacon in a skillet and cook on medium-high heat until evenly brown. set aside.
2. in a large bowl combine broccoli pieces, raisins and red onion
3. in a smaller bowl combine white sugar, white vinegar, water and mayo: whisk until combined
4. add the smaller bowl to the larger bowl and toss until well combined
5. refrigerate for 1-2 hours. sprinkle with sunflower seeds and chopped bacon and serve.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Adorable work from an Etsian Crochet Artist!

You have got to check out the crochet work from this very talented Etsian artist. Her name is Melissa Kirkham and her shop is Knitted Lily Creations.  Her work is so beautiful and she also has some fabulous whimsical pieces.  My favorite right now is this adorable monkey hat.  I wish I had a little boy in my life right now that I could buy it for!  Head on over to her shop, you won't be disappointed!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

2 months of these beauties!!

One of my neighbors told me to enjoy her roses while they are out of town for 2 months!
I will be cutting these beauties like crazy.  Check out the size of some of these gorgeous roses.  Stunning!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Lace Votives

Another great DIY idea.  This simple project is made by soaking cloth doilies in sugar starch and then forming it around a balloon.  Once the starch dries, pop the balloon and you have a romantic tea light holder.  Perfect for a romantic evening at home!

Fabulous and so easy to do!

How great would these look hanging from your Christmas tree or scattered among some plain shells in a crystal bowl!  I think I will be getting out my glue gun today, lol!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Saturday's show at the Apex Peakfest turned out to be wonderful.  The rain held off and we wound up with a sunny day!  Am working on some new displays, will post more pictures after my next show :)
Most recent upcoming show is Cary Lazy Daze in Cary, NC 
Saturday, August 24th from 9-5:00.
I will update if any additional shows will be occurring between now and then :)

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

I got featured on Craftsyble!

Secret Garden Notes

So excited to be featured on Craftsyble's website!

This blog is a fabulous place to find great artisans, get tips on running a successful craft business, tips on social promotion, craft projects, and on and on and on.

Stop on by and check it out, you won't be disappointed :)

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Short, Simple post but with a lot of punch!

Use the frame from an inexpensive paper lantern. This will look awesome once it fills in!

I can envision these hanging under my Pergola, will post pics after I try :)

Thursday, March 7, 2013

In the midst, mothers miss joy.

I read this op-ed piece by Susan Estrich several years ago and it really hit home.  I saved it so that every once in awhile I could read it and try to readjust my perspective and outlook on life.

I hope it speaks to you as much as it did me :)

There has been a whole spate of memoirs lately by young mothers searching for meaning.  They go off looking for happiness in yoga and personal trainers and spiritual gurus.  These are intelligent women, women with fancy educations who either don’t work outside the home or make a living as writers, which is, if you ask me, pretty great when your kids are little.

So why are these women so unhappy?  Why are they trying to find ” happiness” in home improvement projects and exercise and deep breaths?  Not that there is anything wrong with any of those things.  But from where I sit, these women are in the middle of the most wonderful years of their lives, and they are wasting them whining. 

Believe me, I empathize with the trials of raising children.  I remember being so tired I couldn’t think straight, feeling like I had not a minute to myself, wondering what happened to the woman I used to be.  I spent years worrying about money after getting divorced, worrying about how to provide a secure home for my children while I was trying to figure out how to pay the mortgage.  I love my children more than life, which gives them the power to hurt me like no one else.  Being a mother is not easy.
But there is a reason why women who have everything in the world want children even more. There is a reason why we keep giving up promising careers and pursuits we love to be mothers.  We say we are doing it for our children, but let me tell you the secret, as one who was once there:  We do it for ourselves.  We do it because, for all its pain, being a mother with their children in her arms is the very best thing in the world, or at least the best thing I ever found.

The problem is that it doesn’t last forever.  A mother, my friend Annie, says, is always only as happy as her least happy child.  I want happiness and good health for my children far, far more than I want them for myself. You don’t love your children any less as they grow older, but you do come to realize, painfully sometimes, that they don’t belong to you .  They have a right to their own lives, and a parent’s job is not to hold on, but to let go.

Now that my children are grown, I’m ready to look for some other source of (lesser)  happiness, and I’m happy to take inspiration from anywhere I can find it.  My favorite are the books by older women, who have the perspective of life’s joys and losses, something I have learned painfully over the years.  But frankly, many of them are just too sad.  So I pick up the memoirs of the young mothers, figuring there will be fewer deaths and tragedies in them. Any they are not nearly as sad.  But they make me want to shake their authors.
Why do you need a “happiness project” when you have a husband who loves you, plenty of money and two beautiful and healthy children?  Why do you need to “escape” your family when, before you know it, they will be gone? Did someone tell me this 10 or 15 years ago?  Maybe you just can’t hear.  But in case you are one of those mothers and your reading this, let me try:  Wait until your children are my children’s age.  I promise that you will look back and realize that heaven was right there in your house, right there looking at you.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Inexpensive and Simple Scented Hand soap

O.k., I'll admit it, I'm a hand soap snob! There, I said it.

I am an addict for fabulous smelling and looking hand soap.  Nothing
makes me happier than washing my hands after getting my haircut at the Aveda salon in my town.  They have THE most fabulous Rosemary and Mint scented hand soap but at $17.00 a bottle for 8.5 ounces I just can't bring myself to purchase it.  Not only because I think it's insanely overpriced but I also have a 16 year old who uses about 1/4 cup every time he washes his hands!

This dilemma made me take matters into my own hands, no pun intended.
I decided to make my own scented hand soap for a fraction of the cost.

It's quite simple.  All you need is some UNSCENTED liquid soap, available in a ton of different brands and colors.
You will also need to purchase some essential oils, choose whatever fragrances you like best or better yet, experiment with combining scents to make it uniquely your own.

First pour the liquid soap into whatever container you want to use.
Leave some room at the top for the appropriate amount of essential oils.
The amount you use will determine how much liquid soap you are using and your own personal preference.  Just remember, concentrated essential oils can be quite strong so go easy at first, you can always add more later.
Once you add your oils shake well and voila, you now have your own scented hand soap for pennies on the dollar!


Sunday, March 3, 2013

DIY Mini book Necklace with Charms


DIY Mini Book Necklaces with Charms. I have posted 3 or 4 mini book jewelry tutorials and I keep saying, “Oh, this is the best one.” But this is my favorite. Clear instructions, love the grommet closures tied with leather, love the keyhole. For the tutorial and other ideas go to Art by Wendy here. I got a GC to Michaels and will get a crop-a-dile using coupons of course.

I absolutely love the look of these mini book necklaces.  I found this fabulous site that explains how to make these adorable creations.  I have thought of SO many different and interesting ways these could be done, the possibilities are endless!!  If you want to give it a shot, here is the link.  If you decide to try these please post some pics of your finished pieces :)
The images in this post are from the original posting of this tutorial, I did not make these.

Friday, March 1, 2013 Peak Fest Logo

May 4, 2013 – Historic Downtown Apex  9:00AM – 5:00PM

Come see me at the Apex PeakFest!!

Can hardly wait to get back to Apex to do the PeakFest this year.  This is a fabulous festival featuring many talented artisans in a variety of mediums.  There will be live music all day, a car show, entertainment for the kids, great food and more!  

If you are unfamiliar with Apex, NC then you are in for a treat.  Historic downtown Apex is charming!  It is filled with fabulous boutiques, gift stores, restaurants, bakeries and more!

So come on down for a great festival and stop by my tent to say Hi!

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Who doesn't ♥ free gifts!!!!

♥ Receive a free gift- For a limited time!! ♥

Hi everyone!  I am offering a free gift with every purchase in my Etsy shop.
This offer is good for the first 15 customers, so hurry before their all gone!

It's quite simple.  First, follow my blog, then purchase any item in my shop (minimum purchase $25) and receive a free pair of filigree earrings.

Description:  Diamond shaped antique bronze filigree earrings.  These beautiful earrings are accented with sparkling clear Swarovski crystals.
Measurement of diamond filigree is 24mm X 45mm (1" X 1.75")
They are suspended from gorgeous antique bronze kidney earwires
measuring 18mm (.75")

A $15 value.

Upon checkout put code "Blog Giveaway" in the notes to seller box.

As always, thank you for supporting handmade ♥

Monday, February 25, 2013

Are you going to be sporting this latest trend?

Colored pants.... this look takes me back to my high school years in the early 80's, I don't see myself repeating the trend, mainly because I don't have pencil thin legs and this isn't an area on my body I like to highlight, lol!
From the royals to celebrities, this look is hitting the streets this Spring, here's a sneak peak of how it's being worn and by whom.

Kate Middleton, can she not look good in something?  She wore these bright tangerine jeans to visit Great Britain's hockey team last year and the fashion world took notice.  She did a great job pulling off the look with style and grace and in the process, making the trend an instant hit with the world's fashionistas.

Kate Middleton Tangerine Jeans, a Daring Fashion Choice

Recognize any of these familiar faces?
Popular Celebrities Sporting Colored Denim

 As you can see from these images, the color spectrum is vast with this style.  While the tangerines and pinks have been popular as of late, the other colors such as blue, green, yellow, etc. are starting to pick up speed.  If these colors aren't bold enough for you, no worries, they are also available in patterns.
The Spectrum of Colors Is As Wild As Your Imagination

Now for some tips on wearing these the right way.

  • If you are going to choose very bright or neon colors then keep the top half plain.  good contrasting colors are navy, white, black, brown  and grey.
  • If you want to make the look a little more sophisticated finish it off with a well-cut tailored blazer.
  • Nude toned shoes work great with this look but don't be afraid to experiment, just keep in mind, the simpler the better.
  • Some color combinations can be a bit much such as black and yellow, cute bumblebee is not usually the image one wants to project.
  • Keep that in mind for orange and black too, a bit Halloweenish.
The most important part of this is to go with what you feel the best in, let's face it, confidence is the greatest look of all!

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Hurry up Spring!!!

This past summer we had a pergola built in our backyard.  I am so anxious for Spring to arrive so I can start tweaking my little oasis!  I think having an outdoor room is such a treat and a fabulous way to enjoy the weather when it's nice.  It's also a great place to entertain, who cares about spilled red wine!!  :)

wantGorgeous vine
I love pergolas!!