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Monday, April 29, 2013

Crochet along for April Tiny Cacti

This month's project was cute and fun!  We worked on tiny cacti free pattern from Gleeful Things.  It was fast and easy!  
Did I mention cute?? very, very cute!

I know these would look perfect in my new desk space, but these cacti are long gone...One is in Sophia's room the other in Xavi's room.  My niece was visiting the day I put them together and she got lucky too and took the third one home with her.  I will soon be working on another set for my sister she loved them too!  She said she won't kill them.  I can totally relate killings plants!

Can't wait to see the other cacti at the link up party!

crochet along

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Featured artist Viktoriia from JEWELRYand PLEASURE

Today I'd like to you to meet Viktoriia from JEWELRYandPLEASURE.  She has an etsy shop in which she showcases her polymer clay jewelry creations they are fun and very creative.  Enjoy the interview and your Sunday as well!

1. Tell us as little or as much as you would like about yourself.
Hello everyone! My name is Viktoriia. I come from Ukraine but I have been living in Germany since two years. I am 24 years old and like everything creative. I have a lot of hobbys like dancing, writing poems and songs, playing instruments, production of beautiful things and I always try something new.

2. What do you sell?
I sell handmade jewelry and accessories. I love polymer clay, wool, glass and make mixes of these things. In my shop you find some earrings, necklaces, pendants and many other products like dust plug for mobile phones, bookmarks and different accessories. I work with different techniques but there is just one rule: it has to bring joy to the people. Recently I have discovered for me fake gauges. I try to make them unique and funny.

Red Fox two part earrings
3. Why handmade?
It’s a way to be creative and to convert my world view, feelings and emotions in something you can touch and see and to bring happiness for everyone. “handmade” makes me happy and free.

4. Where does your inspiration to create come from and/or your inspiration in life?
Everything inspires me: beautiful flowers, animals, unique people and everything that happens around me. When I am tired creation is a way to relax. When I am happy the things I created remind me of the feelings I had in these moment. And of course when you see my shop you will see that some products are the result of my crazy brain. ;-)

5. Besides creating what else do you do? Do you have a full time job?
I have two master degrees in physics. Now I make my PhD in Physic of Materials. Creativity is my passion!

Floral Pocket Mirror
6. When did you start thinking you were an artist?
I have been dancing since I was six years old and I have been writing poems since I was 8 years old. My whole life I make some things that have to do with creativity and art in different ways. I also consider science as a creative field.

7. Who has been most influential in your craft work?

The people who had the greatest success in their life and who were the best of the best in different fields simultaneously like Leonardo daVinci, Albert Einstein, Mikhail Lomonosov.

Bookmark gray mouse
8. Where would you like to be in five years?
I want to have a Nobel prize in physics and to see everywhere on the streets people wearing my jewelry. :-)

9. Is there anything you'd like to try doing that you haven't done?
crafts, sports, life in general?

Very much, for that I would have to open a new blog! :-)

10. Besides online where else do you sell?
Previously I made products for my family and friends and now Etsy gives me the possibility to present my work worldwide.

Black penguin earrings

Ways to contact you:
website working on it ! It might take some time :)
email victorypo4ta@ukr.net

Thursday, April 25, 2013

April Flowers Week 4

Just living is not enough... one must have sunshine, 
freedom, and a little flower.  
~Hans Christian Andersen

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Won't you step into my office?

I' bet if you heard this from your boss you would not be thrilled.  But it's only me...Claudia so come on in!
 I now have  a little corner of my own to sit and fill out paperwork from my shops. Or write to do lists, letters or send out postcards.
 A little place to store my odds and ends, my favorites and my essentials.  To wrap my etsy sales.
A pretty garland to hang happy mail. I got this New Year's post card  just this month from a customer and friend that forgot to put it in the mail.  Hey it's never too late to wish someone a good year!
 I wanted a whiteboard, a cork board a chalkboard I wanted everything...but you can't always have your cake and Edith too right? So I went for a chalkboard.  I had my husband cut the plywood to size and I painted it with chalkboard paint.  Xavi signed it before we hanged it up on the wall of course.
 I bought my little storage unit from Amazon.  Now I don't have to run to the garage to get my things.
           I love having my own organized mess.  My very own ;)
Oh and I also take this opportunity to show my audacious new haircut.  My sister just chopped off my curls and straightened my hair.  I definitely was born to have straight hair!  
Don't you agree??

Monday, April 22, 2013

My weekend in pictures (deleted) and a big parenthesis ()

Today I wanted to share my weekend in pictures.  Not very exciting really.  We went to this pizza place in Hemet called The Big Cheese Company.  The pizza and the wings are great.  Of course the kids go for the pizza and arcade, my husband goes for the beer, I go so I don't have to cook!

So I took my little camera, it uses 4 rechargeable batteries.  I just recently bought a spare set because my batteries have died once or twice on me :(

Like I said I took the camera, only THE camera and not the carrying case with the spare set of batteries.  Yes you guessed right!, batteries died again after just two pictures.  I hate it because it really does not tell me batteries are dying or anything, I've learned that I cannot always rely on the battery icon.  I need it to tell me batteries are agonizing!!

Here is the big parentheses ( )...Let me share with you that I've recently upgraded from my old basic cell phone plan to a smartphone.  I've never texted before (basically because my plan charged 20cents per text!)  So now with my new phone my cute niece texts me all weekend from 'good morning' to 'good afternoon' to 'what are you doing tia?' in between.  
So now I text! a little...
The first day my husband sent me a text to say hello,
I was trying to reply and received another one from him saying 
'damn you can't text?'
No, not that fast!

Ok so I take out my phone  at the pizza place and start taking pictures to document our outing.  I come home and try to  download them.  That is when the deleting part comes in.  I deleted all the pictures I took.

So far here is my experience:

Things that I like:
I have instant access to my emails
I love that I have instant access to my etsy shops
I can text now ( but I really rather have a conversation it's faster and 
less frustrating than typing on the little pad)
Apps are fun to play with

Things that are frustrating me:
Basically the technology!  I am a non savvy technology person :/
Figuring out the space  on the card and internal device
Battery does not lasts very long
I am not very fond of the pictures the camera takes
I am having the hardest time trying to download, import pics. I plug it in the laptop and it tells me no pics, why??  I just took some!!  Ok if I am able to import them, but then can't find them.
I think this girl is not made for technology.

These are some pictures I took this morning on the phone using retro camera and was able to transfer them with lots of trial and errors.  Lots of frustrations while having to make phone calls, and mop the floors. 
 It's only Monday.  

Sigh, I hope I get this soon.   But really I am having fun with it
...most of the time.

Have a wonderful week ahead!

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Featured artist...Ildi from Ceraminic

Today I'd like you to met Ildi from Ceraminic She has a wonderful ceramic shop where she sells pottery dishes, jewelry and ornaments all handcrafted with lots of love and pretty details.  Please enjoy today's interview.

1. Tell us as little or as much as you would like about yourself.
My life changed totally 7 years ago, when we moved from Budapest (capital of Hungary) to a small town in the Netherlands. I stopped my full time job, I worked as an economist at a marketing agency.  I’m a proud mom of two girls now. I realized I have plenty of time for my daughters and myself. I wanted to learn English, I started volunteering at the school and joined two clubs. One was a local pottery club, and the other an International Ladies Club. Now I’m a happy chairman of the Ladies Club and an enthusiastic ceramic shop owner on Etsy.

Personalized Mother's Day Ceramic Dish
2. What do you sell?

Little ceramic projects made with love for you, eco friendly pottery dishes, shiny jewelry with fine details and unique ornaments to decorate your home!

3. Why handmade?

Handmade is unique, every piece is special and a little bit different. I use to say my ceramics have their own personality.

4. Where does your inspiration to create come from and/or your inspiration in life?

I try to live with open eyes and I can pick up my inspiration items any time…. First of all ‘’mother nature’’ but of course I love to visit exhibitions and search Internet a lot, if I have a favorite topic.

Flower Brooch
 5. Besides creating what else do you do? Do you have a full time job?

Our International Community is changing every year, people are coming and leaving. We are helping new members to feel better about yourself here, we are organizing different programs, craft projects, Charity Lunches, dinners, family days, one day and long weekend trips in Europe.   I’m member in a Walking Group too. This is a big challenge for me, because here is always raining …. I love to bike with my husband, the best relax time for us☺

6. When did you start thinking you were an artist?

I think I’m a crafty person, I love to paint silk scarfs, sewing patchwork and quilt items, knitting and making cross stitch and shaping and painting ceramics☺

Ceramic butterfly buttons
 7. Who has been most influential in your craft work?

First of all my pottery teacher and friends from our course. I found so many talented people on Etsy. If I would say there is no influence from there, it’ll be a lie.

8. Where would you like to be in five years?

My dream to make ceramics and build my own business.

Ceramic ornament

9. Is there anything you'd like to try doing that you haven't done?
crafts, sports, life in general?

I would like to buy a boat and go to the sea...

10. Besides online where else do you sell?

Etsy is the only place.

Ways to contact you:

E-mail: Ceraminic@gmail.com

Thursday, April 18, 2013

April Flowers Week 3

Bread feeds the body, indeed, but flowers feed also the soul.  ~The Koran

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Repurposing and recycling a pre loved book.

When I browse the book sections in thrift shops I am immediately drawn to books like these:
 Little books that were previously loved.
 Ah!  I can see Lara loved it book so much she changed the title.

 So I rip the little book apart in order to give it a new life.
I grab some paper bags (I love my brown bag stationery section), trace A2 size envelopes. From the book pages I cut liners and punch circles for pretty stickers.
 I use some glue to put everything together.

I love the end result...charming, cheerful and cute stationery.  Now waiting patiently in my shop for a new owner that will love it as much as the previous owner did!

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Featured artist Eva from TheBlueRabbitHouse April 14

Today's featured artist is Eva from TheBlueRabbitHouse, all of her handmade products are inspired by nature as she tells on this interview.  Thank you for stopping by and please enjoy this interview.

1. Tell us as little or as much as you would like about yourself.
My name is Eva Vercauteren and I'm a 23-year old Belgian crafter, living in the center of Antwerp. I live here with the love of my life and our two adorable cats. My work is a combination of illustration, embroidery and sewing.

Lavender sachet Hand embroidery
2. What do you sell?
My main focus is to combine my love for illustration and nature with the products I make. To me, you have to be able to use and/or wear an illustration instead of putting it on a shelf or on the wall and leaving it there, unseen. Therefore I sell storage products such as crochet hook holders, jewelry rolls, large and small zipper pouches, mobile phone cases and I plan on expanding my product line in the future even more. Some contain a hand embroidered illustration, some just have a beautiful (mostly vintage looking floral) fabric. Almost a year ago I added a jewelry line with my own illustrations.

3. Why handmade?
As long as I can remember I've been drawing. I learned to crochet and cross stitch at a very early age, so while growing up I regularly picked up the craft. During high school I taught myself more crochet and embroidery stitches. Handmade is just a part of me. I need and want to work with my hands. It's just very important and I wouldn't know what to do if I couldn't craft anymore.

Oval Antique Brass Necklace
4. Where does your inspiration to create come from and/or your inspiration in life?
Nature has been a major source of inspiration. My illustration are minimalistic and yet full of details. Nature gives me the same feeling. I'm attracted to a rustic style. Art wise, I'm very inspired by the art movements zero, minimalism and land art.

5. Besides creating what else do you do? Do you have a full time job?
I have a part time job apart from running my own business. I work at a store where they sell all sorts of things (fashion accessories, tights, socks, sewing material, so on). One day I hope to open my own little shop, so I'm gaining a lot of experience from my part time job. It helps socially too, because I'm mostly on my own while crafting.

6. When did you start thinking you were an artist?
I've never been really fond of the term "artist", but I guess it started the moment I decided I wanted to make a living out of illustrating - which was around the time I was 13 or 14. I can't exactly remember. I had this idea of living at the countryside in a small cottage, surrounded by animals and a large garden. I'd draw all day long. The idea changed a little, because I'd be crafting too! It's still something I dream off. I'm very lucky to have a supportive boyfriend, who'd love to live at a place like that too.

Pencil Storage Pouch
7. Who has been most influential in your craft work?
There isn't really one person who gives me the most inspiration or influences me the most. I think the support of my boyfriend, family and close friends is the most important source which keeps me going. There's nothing I can't ask them and they're always very honest with their opinions. I appreciate this so much! There's one Belgian illustrator who inspired me a lot when I was younger and I'm still a huge fan of her work: Sabien Clement.

8. Where would you like to be in five years?
I hope to have my own line of fabrics by then. That's a goal I set up a couple of years ago. I want to combine my illustration more into my crafting and learn more about embroidery. Maybe I'd like to have my own little shop by then. I'll see how that goes!

Antique Brass Earrings
9. Is there anything you'd like to try doing that you haven't done?
crafts, sports, life in general?
A couple of years ago I started archery. The club I was in wasn't what I had expected of it and there wasn't any other one nearby. So I had to stop this hobby. I'd like to pick it up one day. I'd love to learn how to weave too or just follow a course at a textile design school. At secondary school I learned to etch and silk screen. Learning more about this is somewhere on my list too. The list is actually way too long!

10. Besides online where else do you sell?
I have three stockists within Belgium and a fourth is on its way. I try to join as many craft fairs as possible. It can be very stressful, but I love to have this type of social contact with the visitors who purchase my products. Outside of Belgium, I only sell through Etsy.

Ways to contact you:
email: thebluerabbithouse@gmail.com

Saturday, April 13, 2013


Now let's talk about change, being good or bad I don't know, I don't understand much of it.  But it's certainly going around in the blogosphere.  I am confused a bit about all of this really!  I am not the computer savviest person you can find :( 

Google Friends connect? Google Reader?  No longer be, come this July! I've always read my favorite blogs and the people I connect with from my dashboard on my reading list.  I don't really know if these new changes in April will affect me or not. 

I'd hate to loose contact with you all! So in order to stay connected my dear friends and readers here are two ways you can follow me.  Let me know if you are in either of those so I can follow you back.

I am on Bloglovin 
Also on Hellocotton

As much as I hate change:

“The Only Thing That Is Constant Is Change -”

Thursday, April 11, 2013

April Flowers Week 2

Last year I was given great advice on these.

If I had a single flower for every time I think about you, I could walk forever in my garden.  ~Claudia Ghandi

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Morning Laughs...on tying shoes and life

Just recently Xavi finally learned how to tie shoes.  After many many frustrated attempts he finally did it.  So, now he wants to tie every shoe he sees!  He goes into my walk in closet and ties all of my husband's shoes.  Of course, he won't let me help him any more even when we are rushing for school :/

The other morning while getting ready for school he was tying his shoes he said:

'Mom, now that I know how to tie shoes the only thing I need to learn so that my life is complete is how to whistle...of course I will still grow up and go on with life...'

I only wish life would stay easy for my boy, without complications, without his heart ever be broken. But unfortunately and without a doubt that won't happen.  Life is complicated.  I am confident he will make the right choices in life and he will know how to face trials successfullyI am sure he will do great in life because, he is such a wonderful boy and he has great potential

I can't wait to see the amazing young man he will become 
in the years ahead!

Monday, April 8, 2013

A Happy Birthday

My baby niece Edaly just turned one!

We celebrated with a cake, cupcakes, ice cream 
and a sweet baby girl!

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Featured artist Vanya from VanessaHandmade

For today's feature I bring to you Vanya from VanessaHandmade.  She sells sophisticated and unique wearable sculptures. Her etsy shop is unique indeed, please read on and enjoy the interview and your Sunday.

1. Tell us as little or as much as you would like about yourself.
My real name is Vanya. I spent the last 5-6 years abroad. I had the pleasure to live in two unique places of the world in Greece and Australia. Foreign people couldn't pronounce my name and called me Vanessa. All my life was full of unexpected twists, adventure and drama. Now I am so happy to be back in my small beautiful country Bulgaria ( Eastern Europe). I live with my son - a lovely teenage boy.

Choker Necklace Crochet Tube Wrapped Bloom
2. What do you sell?
I sell unconventional fiber jewelry with tube concept , mostly necklaces. I divide my creations in two lines: one-of-a-kind and items that are originally designed by me and I can repeat them in different colors or size. I try to satisfy the different kinds of women taste, keeping my tube style of work.
Most of my jewelry are created especially for woman, who value originality and like to be different from the crowd, I want them to make every outfit remarkable and unique. I don't follow any trendy styles, I work on my own. The products of my imagination have a natural flow and their own quirks. My style is eye-catching, unconventional, unusual and distinctive compared to most commercialized accessory lines.

3. Why handmade?
This is what I do. I cannot exist without doing something with my hands. Handmade products have their own soul embodied by their creator. People who own or wear them get a feeling of something special.
Crochet Tube Hoop Earrings Chocolate Brown

4. Where does your inspiration to create come from and/or your inspiration in life?
I see the tube as a geometric line that can be curved into many shapes and forms using a wire inside. My inspiration comes from all natural free forms around us. I admire and love all irregular and asymmetrical shapes created by nature.
I also get inspired by experimenting with my materials. They are an important part, generating new ideas in my mind.
I love to combine vintage treads with my personal natural beach findings. I also use artificial elements.
I don't use patterns in my work, just a simple crochet technique and put my mind in the sculpturing.
I work in several points – the shape, the accent, the combination of colors. Each item takes a lot of time to make but I like what I do and give it a lot of love and attention.

5. Besides creating what else do you do? Do you have a full time job?
I’m independent and self-taught in everything handmade I do.
I’ve always wanted to turn my talents into a profession but I was unlucky. I graduated from law university and worked as lawyer for a couple of years after my studies. For quite a lot of time I had inner struggles between these different worlds. Finally I followed the desire of my heart and I chose to stay with my full-time creative work.
Scarlet Heart Necklace Wrapped Crochet Tube
6. When did you start thinking you were an artist?
My whole life is dedicated to art and everything handmade. I began making things as a little girl - painting, mixed media wall decoration, original clothing, jewelry and lots more!
I know that I can do anything that anyone else can't but as well I know there are people who can do more than me. Talent is not learned, it develops. People are born with it and when it is shown to the world and evaluated, then the others start thinking about you as an artist.
So, I’ve always felt as a creator but more important is whether people see me as an artist.

7. Who has been most influential in your craft work?
I don't have any idol who influenced me in particular.
I admire and really like all things that are non-traditional, abstract, artistic, contemporary, different and special.
The things that could be influential in any craft work are the trends, the customer audience, the feedback.
I can say that I always follow my inner sense in my work and try to interpret some of these influences into my own artistic point of view and put them into my line of work.

8. Where would you like to be in five years?
I'm impulsive in nature and really don't know but one is sure, wherever I am, I'd like to be healthy, first and foremost, to continue to grow and enjoy creating beautiful objects.

Handmade Bib Necklace
9. Is there anything you'd like to try doing that you haven't done? crafts, sports, life in general?
Oh my gosh, so many things!

10. Besides online where else do you sell?
I’ve done custom orders many years, sales at exhibitions and craft fairs. Now, mainly online. Etsy is the place where I present and sell my work worldwide.

Ways to contact you:
e-mail: vanessahandmade@gmail.com
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