the CEO! Creative Eternal Optimist! Blog
Monday, March 04 2013
It is the first Monday of the month and time for the Designer Crafts Connection Blog Hop! AND to celebrate (inter)National Craft Month we have a super giveaway, a collection of products from FabScraps, https://www.facebook.com/pages/FabScraps/112579348780638?ref=ts&fref=ts. Julie McGuffee shared these products as a Trade Show find on TV, http://youtu.be/-OZjx6Yhmg0.
To enter to win, check out our DCC blogs in the hop, (button is in sidebar) then comment on the blog that features your favorite crafting technique and then tell what it was on Julie McGuffee's blog, Life in the Craft Lane.
This month's challenge was to post about our favorite crafting technique. Well it isn't difficult to guess what mine is and technically it isn't crafting but sewing. it IS sewing! I love to sew, machine sewing and hand embroidery both. I love to create pretty, whimsical things.
I remember at 5 years old spending time in the summer on the front porch sewing next to my Mom with my tiny sewing machine. Since her birthday is in a couple days and she has been gone four years now it is lovely to remember those summer afternoons!
So here is a little roundup of all things sewn! Designs I have created and love!
Pin Cushions with my favorite hand stitch, the blanket stitch.
With cuddly characters I get to both machine and hand sew!
oh and I sew love to make aprons! Have a few pretty ones I am creating to wear at Quartermain House B&B.
.....and wait there is even more, beginning March 7th, we are also hopping in Buttons Galore DCC Blog Hop! Love their buttons!
....and the Smoothform Design Team was just announced. I am pleased to be part of their team along with several very talented professional designer friends! We have a super creative blog with a new project for every day of the month!
So here is to National Craft Month, to crafting, sewing, painting, embossing, doodling, to creativity! Have fun!
Monday, February 18 2013
I find my self technically challenged often these days, I also find it exciting! I love my new iPad but am still figuring out how to do things. I always thought I would be a PC gal but I love my iPad. Slips in my purse perfectly too!
My blog I have been neglecting, having trouble posting from my iPad so have to work that out especially with March being National Craft Month! Lots of creativity happening, I am part of a new design team, more about that to come! More crafty challenges too!
my new place has been taking a lot of my time. Final inspection tomorrow and few other details to put in place and my new venture Quartermain House is ready to open! A cozy B&B with three beautiful guest rooms on the river in a heritage home! I love decorating and entertaining, I love my creative work and it all comes together nicely in this new venture.
I wanted To travel a little less and do more at home so it is happening, a couple trips a year will be perfect and now I am teaching and exhibiting here more plus the home of my dreams literally. The other wonderful news is I am now engaged to the most darling man who has been a huge help around here. Life is good, very good indeed!
Here is to a wonderful year ahead!
Tuesday, August 28 2012
This week is full of creativity! Can't spill it all yet but lots happening! I can share about this Friday I am the featured guest blogger with the talented Lisa Rojas." Give The Queen A Call!"
Designer, Artist, Teacher. Blog- http://www.stampinqueencreations.blogspot.com CHA Designer Council Member and CHA Designer Discussion List Moderator.
Lisa is one of the sweetest people and amazing designer. Her designs are delightful and she turns manufacturer's products into unique projects.
I am very honored to be one of her guest bloggers! Thanks Lisa!
Sunday, May 06 2012
Like spring bursting into bloom so is creavtivity blossoming daily!
Monday, the Designer Craft Connection hops with Jewelry designs.
Saturday the 12th twenty of us from the DCC hop again with designs using the ImpressArt Metal Stamps. These very cool stamps imprint into metals and clay to create stunning jewelry pieces.
Wednesday, highights from the NBTA Council Days, I taught a fun workshop using stray socks, mittens and gloves from the Lost and Found to create silly creatures. The teachers were a great group and it was fun to have my cousin an elementary kindergarten teacher in my group! We went to Elementary School together.
The countdown is on to the opening of our Artist Cooperative, Artful Persuasion in downtown Fredericton on May 15th.
I am working with the gorgeous range of Rit Dye colors this week on a couple of projects for the company.
It is an inspired spring, May is bursting with creative goodiness!
Monday, March 05 2012
It is the first Monday of the month, time for the Designer Blog Hop Crafts Connection! Forty talented designers strut their stuff and offer some surprises as you hop along! We are celebrating interNational Craft Month! With Easter just a few weeks away I am featuring the tutorial for the cute chick/duck I demoed for a segment of Creative Living with Sheryl Borden.
Sheryl is holding the baby duck in the photo that I demoed on the show. In yellow it becomes a cute chick!
3", 6" balls, 4" cube of MakeitFun STYROFOAM ™ Brand Foam
1/6 yard yellow fleece
1/3 yard orange fleece
9" x 12" pieces of Canary (yellow), Papaya (orange) scraps of Fuchsia, Seashell Pink, Caribbean Surf ( teal) Xotic Felt by National Nonwovens
6" fabric scrap
1 chenille stem
1 skein black, pink embroidery floss
6 black, 12 colored head quilt pins
Aleene's Fabric Fusion™
5", 8" Westcott Brand® Titanium Steel Scissors
(Ruler, measuring tape, pencil, circle templates for large duck 12", small 8")
- Making the Ducks: For both the 3" and 6" ducks construction is exactly the same. The pattern pieces included are for both sizes. Any variations will be indicated in instructions. For the 3" duck cut a 3" and 8" fleece circle. For the 6" duck cut two 3" and one 12" circles. Cut two of each cheeks, beaks and four of each foot from felt. Cut ½" by 9" strip of felt for bows.
- With upholstery thread anchor thread at edge of the large circle. Sew a small basting stitch around the complete circle.
- Pull stitches slightly. Place circle over ball pulling stitches tightly. Circle should stretch to close. (On larger duck if this does not happen, a small circle can be glued on bottom to finish the body.) Secure thread and cut.
- For small duck cut 3" circle in half. Fold in half again wrong sides together and glue. For large duck fold each 3" circle in half wrong sides together and glue. Glue wings to sides of body as shown in photo.
- Glue beak pieces together angling top one slightly higher than lower beak. Make two small stitches at top of beak. (These stitching details are optional; they can also be recreated with a fabric marker.) Glue beaks to center of face slightly above wing line.
- Insert two black head pins as eyes. Adjust until you are pleased with location. Remove and dip in glue, reinsert pushing in to indent in face slightly.
- Sew around cheek circles with pink floss if desired or use fabric marker or add just as is. Glue to face of duck under eyes. Refer to photo for placement.
- Place feet together in pairs, reverse one pair. Glue together. Outline in black floss with a small stitch as an option. Glue feet to bottom of bird. Tie bow from felt strip, pin or glue to head.
- Making the Chicken: Use the ruler to cut a 4" by 16" strip of fleece. Cut two 4" squares of fleece and one 3" circle. Cut one 1 ½" by 3" topknot piece, two beaks, two 3" by 3" strips and four feet from orange felt. Cut one 3" circle from fabric scrap. Cut one heart from teal.
- Begin at one edge of cube and glue long fleece strip. Wrap fleece piece around cube bringing it back to the edge to meet. Glue in place. Glue each 4" square on the opposite two remaining sides along edges. Press fleece seams together, add more glue if needed.
- Cut 3" fleece and fabric circles in half for wings. Glue or sew with black around edges. Pin or glue in place on either side of chicken. (Approximately at 3" mark.)
- Cut chenille stem in two 3" pieces. Roll an orange strip around each leg and glue. Place feet in pairs reversing one set. Glue or topstitch in black around edges. Glue to end of each leg. Glue to edge of body.
- Glue beak pieces together with top one slightly above lower beak. Glue to face. Insert two black head pin eyes. Add glue to ends and reinsert indenting slightly.
- Fold topknot in half, cut through from fold to 1/4 " from ends. Glue to top of head. Stitch through heart with black floss. (Optional or use fabric marker.) Glue heart to body.
Have fun hopping! Leave a comment here to enter your name for a fabulous pair of Westcott Brand® Extreme EdgeTitanium Steel Scissors!
Monday, January 02 2012
Happy New Year! 2012 has arrived! There is a creative optimism, a freshness to a new year, new calendars, new pages to turn, resolutions and intentions are made.
The international CHA Craft and Hobby Trade Show is only four weeks away! I have posted my calendar on the Home page, is a busy show week with exhibiting and other events!
January also sees the launch of licensed artist Brenda Pinnick's new blog devoted to color, Color Cafe features a talented designer/artist each day serving up color inspired projects and design. Look for me on January 25th!
My virtual home is also getting a fresh new look and every page is being updated and prettied up! Here is to an exciting year full of creative adventure and profound joy for everyone!!!
Wednesday, October 26 2011
It is the season for spooktacular creations! STYROFOAM brand foam lends itself to all kinds of delightfully scary projects, quick and easy to make. This group of whimsical characters by Plaid Crafts are ideal for decking the ghoulish halls! A ball and a cone shape, so many combinations!
(photo courtesy of Plaid Crafts)
A new magazine has just been released. I haven't seen it yet but the snippets I have seen are gorgeous projects combining sewing and crafting, two of my top favorites! Look for inspiration in Stitch Craft Create. The creative life is an inspired one! Be inspired today and follow the JOY of Creativity! Debra
Monday, October 24 2011
It was a whirlwind weekend filled with creativity. Creativity is defined as
the ability to transcend traditional ideas, rules, patterns, relationships, or the like, and to create meaningful new ideas, forms, methods, interpretations, etc.; originality, progressiveness, or imagination: (Dictionary.com)
From the Roller Derby Fashion Parade at my daughter's game, my other daughter's delightful and delicious cupcakes and the kids crafty camp afternoon creativity was overflowing. Fishnets to tutus and every combination of animal print possible the Roller Derby gals and many fans were rocking some wild style! I "tricked out" a Capitol City Roller's T with glitter, gems and a new off the shoulder neckline and a "Derby Mom" logo on the back.
My kitchen hosted a full day of yummy and fragrant aromas as "The Enchanted Cupcake by Kate" baked up delicious speciality cupcakes, Chocolate Bliss, Vanilla Dream and Lemon Locks. The delicate frosting looked like roses as Kate piped a mix of two colors together.
Sunday afternoon was more t shirt and costume fun with my kid's crafty camp. They are delightful and there was paint and glitter everywhere. I showed them how to stamp, stencil and screen print with fabric paints. The screen printing was their favorite. Using a piece of sheer curtain fabric under plastic or adhesive stencils securely taped down worked really well. A line of paint was added across top of stencil and pulled across stencil with a credit card. This was their favorite technique. Their enthusiasm and confidence in their design approach is wonderful. I am always re-inspired after a day with the kids.
Now a new week begins and more crafty goodness is coming up. Fresh Vintage Blog Hop with more new dies by Eileen Hull for Sizzix on Tuesday and Thursday. Thursday I have another creative class, sewing up some whimsical holiday ornaments. I have the best students, class is always fun and full of wonderful designs. The more my students create the more ideas flow for something else. Last week they created some pretty holiday cards, the tree themed ones very festive with a whimsical touch!
What I have learned is creativity is like a muscle, the more you use it the stronger it becomes. Slumps, blocks happen but just diving in with something simple like a few markers and a journal, just playing for awhile will be very beneficial to mind, body and spirit. How do you handle a creative slump, just leave a comment with some of your ideas for kick starting creativity. Debra, Inspiring the JOY of Creativity!
Thursday, October 07 2010
As I prepare for our Canadian Thanksgiving this weekend I am reminded of how much I have to be grateful for. I bring out my Mom's spode dishes which mirror the vibrant colors of the season and think how happy she would be knowing I am using her special dishes. She would also be so very pleased to see how well the girls are doing and how happy and loved I am in my new life.
I like to sprinkle colorful leaves along the table when decorating for Thanksgiving. A very striking way to create fall leaves and recycle at the same time is to cut leaves from aluminum beverage cans. Begin by cutting the top and bottom off each can flattening the center section. Sponge paint with metallic paints. Cut out leaves. Use a stylus to create veins in the leaves. For full instructions for creating this striking centerpiece it is under projects at Creative Homearts.
There are two huge chestnut trees in the yard and I have managed to collect some that the squirrels have missed. The nuts create a stunning accent in a bowl with their rich deep shine. I finished my decor with some mini gourds in a variety of autumnal shades and indian corn. Decorating should be easy, using items you have and natural pieces from the yard or someone elses (preferably someone you know!) My Mom's dishes for example do not go with my everyday decor but they are perfect for fall, the ones with the pink roses will be ideal for springtime. Setting a beautiful table adds to the celebration of special times! Follow the JOY! Debra, CEO!
Wednesday, August 18 2010
One of the most delightful and talented people I am so fortunate to have as a friend is the marvellous Margot Potter. She has a new book out which is getting rave reviews Bead Chic and she has stunning excerpts from the book on her popular blog. I love the "Chaos in Pearls" Necklace. Margot has written several books and whenever I meet up with her at a tradeshow she is always wearing one of her fabulous creations. She inspires me in many ways and one of these days I am going to seriously try some beading. For now I admire at the artistry and beauty of her pieces!
Today another very talented friend Kathy Peterson of Crafting for Health sent me a link posted to my Facebook page. They have posted today my piece I wrote about the Kids Craft Club I organized in my daughter's school. Such fun, this picture says it all!
Follow the JOY! Debra, CEO!
Monday, May 03 2010
Monday morning has arrived, a new work week begins. It feels good to begin the week after a refreshing weekend off. I found a lovely place to move into while away on the weekend, had a great time in the warm May sun and a shopping afternoon with my darling daughters! The three of us have very different tastes but also very similar and we always enjoy road trips together. We had fun!
As artists and designers who work from home, inspiration comes from many sources. It can also feel isolating at times but with the explosion of networking possibilities and shared knowledge online that has all changed. This week I am signed up for an ecourse with artist and designer Laura Bray, Multiple Streams of Income for artists and designers. Suzanne Falter Barns another one of my very favourite people is always giving free teleclasses full of inspiration and information. Business is changing, how we operate as individuals must also carry over to our work, as artists that is inherent, our values, our passion in our business is necessary for true success. Success is not just measured by monetary means but by the value of what we offer to ourselves and others in enriching lives, making a difference and living in a way that feeds our soul. A rich life is one in which we live with respect, honesty and dignity, filled with purpose and meaning surrounded by whom we love and what we love.
Laura Bray also talks about creating your Style Statement, how you live your life through your home, business and way of conduct and dress. She calls her style Creative Nostalgia (TM). Raising the question, what is your style statement? Does the way you live your life in all areas reflect the authentic you? Would you like to live in peaceful, beautiful surroundings and yet live among chaos? Do you want more meaning in your life but find yourself involved in meaningless busyness? Sometimes changing just one thing can make a big difference and just thinking about what you really want, writing it down makes change happen.
Thinking about my own Style Statement, it is creative, joyful and feminine, I live surrounded by soft colors and dress very feminine. I believe the best of everyone and treat others with respect and compassion. I have never spoken even in situations that might warrant it by others in a way that I would regret. We have to live with ourselves. I know that love must be held with an open hand, love remains because it wants to like a butterfly that lights every so softly on a flower drawn by the fragrance and the beauty.
I want to say thank you to all you visit my site and read my blog. My only wish is that it adds to your day, a bright spot that brings a smile. We have only one life, live it well.
Follow the JOY! Debra, CEO!
Monday, April 12 2010
When Mondays are met with sunshine and spring time, it begins the week with a zesty flair! This week is a celebration of creativity, connections & caring. Tonight I am off to do a presentation at the Keswick Ridge Quilt Guild, speaking about my design work, books and fabric. Tuesday is a very special day, a Celebration of Life for my dear friend who passed away Friday night. Donna was very talented and I am blessed to have had her as my friend. I have many pieces she created as gifts from painting to quilting she infused every piece with her love. Wednesday is the Sizzix Scoreboards TM Teacup Blog Hop by designer friend Eileen Hull.
Sunday I am taking part in the Scotiabank Relay for Life Fashion Show.
In the new issue of Create & Decorate are spring vegetables I made for Dow using STYROFOAM TM brand foam and National Nonwovens Wool Wisps TM. Needle felting on foam is so easy, the full instructions are available in a download on their website as well. The radish were my favorite to create.
The current issue of Creative Homearts features my column "Make it Green" and my visit to Mrs. Grossman's sticker company. Links to pictures are on my website's front page.
So to a creative week everyone! Embrace creativity, a cause & those close to your heart always! Follow the JOY! Debra, CEO!
Tuesday, March 16 2010
March is International Craft Month and there is all kinds of crafty goodiness happening. Over at When Creativity Knocks a new webisode, Linda Crofton shows Ana & Megan a fun way to embellish wooden bangles, DIY Bangles from Indus Trading Company. Tiffany Windsor hosts Cool2Craft , live interactive web TV. On yesterday's episode her sister Heidi showed how to emboss with glue. Her projects were beautiful and resembled lovely watercolor pieces. She used chalks to achieve the effect. Tiffany also hosts another show Favecrafts, a blog talk radio show, link on my page sidebar. There is also a very cool group on Facebook, Craft it Forward where crafty people are signing up to send and share a handmade project to the first five people who comment on their post. Hundreds are signing up!
Crafting is huge, it is hip and cool. Making stuff is rewarding and relaxing. The web allows huge connections between crafty and creative individuals. We come together to celebrate our common interest, our passion, the love of creativity! On the weekend I had the best time crafting with two sweet little girls five and seven. Their delight in using scissors, markers and glue to make a variety of colorful projects made it a very fun experience. I came home with a friendship bracelet liberally sprinkled with rhinestones and the promise to never take it off. They advised me to shower with my arm sticking out of water.
Last spring I taught needle felting at the BC Sewing & Craft Show. One little girl came also everyday for the demo time. Here she is with a very proud smile and a very cute chick! Follow the JOY! Debra