Monday, December 26, 2011

Handmade Christmas

Have you heard of the Barbapapas? It's a book series by Annette Tison and Talus Taylor that I used to read when I was young. It really is great- whimsical, happy, good messages. The books have been out of print for awhile and are now considered collectors items. So when my niece wanted Barbapapa dolls for ChristmasI knew I had to make them! 

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Holiday Pictures

If you've been reading this blog for a few years then you've probably figured out that I'm not a big fan of the holidays.  I don't like the obligations, running around like mad, sending out the required Christmas cards with sweet family photos... So this year Hana and I made our own kind of holiday card!
I'm getting them printed tomorrow (and don't want to spoil the surprise for those of you on my mailing list), but these are some of the extra pictures we took:

 Hana is really good at doing a straight face, mine is totally insane, and Rosie, well, she's cute no matter what, even when she was a pest and insisted on being in the pictures (seriously, a part of her is in almost every photo)!  And yes, those are Christmas vests and turtlenecks we're sporting. Um, yeah, and potholders. Please don't blackmail me.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011


Get 10% off your purchase in my Etsy shop! The coupon code is 'Holiday2011'. Enjoy!

Saturday, December 3, 2011

I received the following conversation from a customer at Etsy:


I really love your little whale here. I was wondering if it was possible to mark the year somewhere on the little guy? I started an ornament collection for my baby last year (this will be ornament 2/2, and he is definitely not a little baby any more...) - and having your whale with 2011 tagging him somewhere would be really cool. If you can't, I totally understand - I would still want to give him a home with us.


I was thrilled to be a part of such a sweet tradition! And of course, I was happy to include the year. Do you have any holiday traditions? 

New ornaments!

I was looking at my Etsy shop and realized that I had a few whales that hadn't been posted. Whoops! Don't forget- you get free shipping on the second item purchased when you buy an ornament!

Pink Whale with Pink Belly

Pink Whale with Orange Belly

Tahitian Whale 

Tahitian Whale (other side)

Monday, November 28, 2011

Long Creative Weekend

This weekend was GREAT! I work off for four days. It was amazing. On the creative side I compulsively made a snail, I started an idea that's been floating around for awhile- fabric jewelry (I'm almost finished with my first piece!), and I worked on Mud Whimsy Ceramics. It was nice to feel like I had the time to just mess around. I also designed an advertisement button:

My ad will be over at Cakies for the month of December. I've enjoyed Rubyellen's blog for quite awhile and am excited to sponsor her!

On the not-so-creative-but-very-fun side I went thrift store shopping. My best find was a tablecloth that is beautifully hand sewn. I am going to turn it into a bedspread.

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving! 

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Encaustic Fun

A little while ago my daughter and I had some encaustic fun. She's been collecting bugs; I've been collecting feathers.

Here she is all finished and proud!

A detail of the honey bee. It was found dead. No insects were purposely killed for this art piece!

...And here is mine. I'm thinking of adding a touch of orange. Any thoughts?

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

New Octopus!

I just listed these in the shop:

I do love them so- I hope they find good homes!

Tomorrow I'll be adding some of these ornaments to my shop:

A few weeks ago we had a big heavy snow storm before the trees lost their leaves. Many branches were broken. I found a cool big branch, trimmed it, put it in a tree holder (for a fake christmas tree), and painted it white. It's the perfect thing to hang all my creatures on! 

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Extra Hour

I'm not sure if we actually gained an hour for daylight savings but it definitely felt like it. It was strange to wake up and realize that I was awake earlier than usual. I decided to do something with my hour, so I made another octopus. (I still can't find my camera cable so I took a picture on my computer. Unfortunately it doesn't show the amazing colors in this guy!) He's made with vintage fabric that I had a small swatch of.

You get a little peek at one of my collections too... I have 9 gold framed mirrors hanging in my bedroom, all on the same wall. I just liked how the first one looked (an antique oval mirror , above the octopus' head) and kept finding them in thrift stores.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Facebook Giveaway!

Yes, a giveaway! Here's what you need to do: 

2) Comment, write on my wall or post a link to my page (let me know if you post a link).
3) Check my page on November 14th... I will enter all contestants' names in a hat and draw a lucky winner. 

Prize: $20 redeemable in my Etsy shop


Loan Tran for from StyleLikeU on Vimeo.

I just watched this video over at and was so inspired! Loan Tran is just herself, no apologies. She was discouraged by being turned away from dance clubs in New York and thought, "I can dance wherever I want!" And so she did, with headphones and costumes.

 My favorite quote of hers is:
"We're all different, and sometimes we need courage to show the world what truly makes us different -whether it means how you dress, or how you express yourself."

After doing a little hunting I discovered that she has a blog, an art website, a documentary in the works,  and she's been noticed around NYC...  

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Etsy Treasury

Ikioma Finnish ecodesigns

I used to REALLY want to create a treasury list on Etsy but every time I would try there wouldn't be space. I even checked it at weird times in the middle of the night (silly me, I should know that LOTS of artists and crafters are night owls like me!). I think it was reformatted because when I went to check it today I was able to just create one! The title is Eco Holidays: Buy Handmade Recycled Gifts. I typically look for other recycled and eco crafters so I had a bunch in my favorites already, but I also found a lot of new great creators. If I had the money I would buy everything on my treasury- I love it all!
 Here it is
ps- more on buying handmade later...

Wednesday, November 2, 2011


My boyfriend, Brad, sure takes some great photos! I love how these turned out. All of these ornaments are for sale in my Etsy shop HERE! As always, they are made from recycled fabric- much of it is vintage, so they are one-of-a-kind. 

(If you're interested in hiring Brad for product photography he can be found at


Here's a few more photos of Halloween. My daughter wanted to be Catwoman this year- which she told me about at 6:00 Sunday night! I offered to make her the mask. I figured that would make or break the costume. It was created with a black t-shirt, some black felt, and white stitches. I think it turned out pretty well!

And my birthday was lovely... I did everything I wanted to do, didn't work AT ALL (I didn't even put clothes in the dryer!), I ate good food all day (cappuccino in the morning, Jill's Cafe for lunch, Foolish Craig's in the afternoon, and Indian food for dinner), and I saw some of my favorite people.  My daughter wins the award for the strangest birthday gift ever:
(It's a zombie baby eating its own foot)

Today my boyfriend photographed the latest projects... I'm excited to post them! He's still editing and retouching, but they will be up as soon as possible.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Happy birthday to me!

It is officially my birthday! Every year on my special day I take the day off of work, spend time with the people I love, and do whatever I feel like doing. Tomorrow I'm sleeping in, going to a free yoga class, out for lunch with my dad, then my boyfriend is coming over to help me photograph my stuff (New whales! New octopus! Cards!). It's a good sign when I want to work on ReLove Projects on my birthday!
To help celebrate my special day I'm giving YOU a present:  20% off anything in my Etsy shop. Enter 'Birthday' in the coupon code.  It's only good today, November 1, so jump on it!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Happy Halloween!

Oh, I am so excited for Halloween this year! I've always wanted to be a peacock except I was stuck on the fact that the beautiful blue and green peacocks are actually male. Then I decided, screw it- I can cross dress-  it's Halloween!

So this year I am a peacock. I made a dress out of recycled t-shirts and a bunch of fabric I had in my studio.  I sewed and cut ALL the feathers on the tail... My poor fingers had blisters from the sewing scissors, but it was worth it. I got to test run my costume at a Day of the Dead themed party over the weekend.

Unfortunately I didn't get any full body or tail shots, dang it. But tomorrow I'm dressing up too!

If you're wondering who's in the photo booth with me on the left is zombie Steve Jobs (AKA Brad, my boyfriend), on the right is a Japanese Gothic Lolita (AKA Megan).

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Social Media

The past two weeks I've been trying to get a little more savvy in the social media department. I've had a Twitter account for ages (@ reloveprojects) but I barely did anything with it.  I just never really got it. But according to my research a Twitter account is crucial to a craft business. It's a way to constantly remind people that you're around and making things. So- you'll notice a little 'follow' icon off there to the right. I'm going to play around with it and see what happens.

I've also just finished creating a Facebook page. It still needs work, but it's up and running.

In celebration of my social media advances, next week I will be offering discounts and giveaways to those that are 'following' and 'liking'!

PS- Twitter and Facebook took me waaaay too long to do, and part of that was that I couldn't figure it out. I'd be happy to help anyone else who's struggling with this! Email me at

Thursday, October 20, 2011

New Listings! Yay!

I am so excited to be making stuff again! Here are some new listings in my Etsy shop. They are all one-of-a-kind, so if you love it then get it before someone else does! Click on the caption to be directed to the item.

Medium Dog Collar- Bright Blue with Blossoms

New things!

Stepping away from my computer and phone the other day was very good for productivity- I finished a bunch of collars, a few whale ornaments, and I almost finished wrapping a branch in yarn. My idea is to use it to display my goods (hopefully in a holiday market, if I'm accepted!).

My boyfriend, Brad Nielson, helped me photograph all of my newly completed things:

Look for new listings in my etsy shop over the next few days!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

I am going to do this

This is another great addition to the world by Miranda July... "A Handy Tip for the Easily Distracted". I think I might have to do this! Then I will make coffee, then I will finish some dog collars I started, then I will paint a shelf for my studio, then I will wrap a branch in yarn, then I will photograph my finished dog collars, and then I'll post them on Etsy, no wait, can't do that (not only will my computer be trapped, but I also can't find my camera cable ANYWHERE), um, so then I'll clean my room and change my sheets (don't you love a bed with clean sheets?), and while cleaning my room I'll find the camera cable, and maybe by then the grape juice will have evaporated and I can post my new collars on Etsy!

Monday, October 10, 2011

New Dog Collar

I'm getting back into sewing dog collars... For awhile I felt like I was a one-person assembly line robot just making collars and I lost the creative drive to do it. So I took a break. This is the first one I've made in months! I'm back in a place where I'm really enjoying sewing them again, so I'm going to crank out a few more. I haven't listed this one yet in my Etsy shop, so as my blog readers you get first dibs! If you're interested in purchasing let me know and I'll reserve it for you! 

Do you go through lulls when you just don't feel like creating? What do you do to recover from your burn out?

PS- Better photos are coming soon!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

White Box

This is such a beautiful, creative video! I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

White Box from makoto yabuki on Vimeo.

(found HERE)

Monday, October 3, 2011

Inspiration: Kristin FitzGerrell

 The first and second weekend of October Open Studios are happening in Boulder. It is a FABULOUS event that's been going on for 17 years. 135 artists open up their homes/studios to the general public and are there to answer questions and show people around. Every time I go I leave feeling so inspired!

On Saturday I went to the home and studio of Kristin FitzGerrell of Studio 22. She makes wall pieces out of reclaimed wood, though that description doesn't do her work justice! I really love her artist statement (found on her website,

In this studio the scrap bin is the supply closet. My mixed media collage and assemblage work justifies my complete and chronic infatuation with cast-offs. In my artistic practice I elevate the simplest of scrap to pedestal status and encourage you to see beauty where it had not been evident before. I find shape, color, and form inspiration in the most ordinary of places. My art materials come from an alley, a salvage yard, a recycle bin, a dumpster. I work and re-work these precious bits right down to the part that is left over from the part that was left behind.

It might be a weathered piece of wood, a fabric scrap, or sign letter that I find too irresistible to pass by. I am forever drawn to the bits and pieces that have become useless to us in our busy, important lives. I am most enamored with the ones that have lost a mate, worn through a layer or have passed their prime. I choose my scraps and sometimes, even when I think I can walk by, they choose me.

‘Tis a scrappy love affair to be sure.

This is what I think artist statements should be like- storytelling, personal, funny, revealing. 

Kristin's house was AMAZING. And it brings me to why Open Studios is so fun. Kristin's home is the kind of place that you'd walk past and think, "Hmmm, I wonder what it looks like inside". And you might even walk by at night hoping that the curtains were left open. It's a remodeled home, modern and custom, different from the ranches and track homes on either side. Its obvious that someone creative lives inside. The one bedroom that was open to the public had a chair in the corner that was a knobby gnarled stump of wood that was lacquered and gorgeous.... I was inspired and did a search on 'wood stump chairs'.  This is what I found:
Arbor Chair by Peter Jakubik found here

Solid Wood Furniture by Denis Milovanov

Found here

The one I found that is the most similar to Kristin's is HERE....
Kristin's art was everywhere- Forms made from probably 20 different chunks of wood that were stained and painted and pieced together: elephants, cows,  little birds on branches, typography, bulls eyes.... Even though it was on display for sale all of the art looked like it was placed permanently. None of it looked out of place or temporary. She has a distinct style that flirts with being modern, rustic, crafty, and fine art.

There is a great article in The Daily Camera written by Julie Hagy HERE if you'd like to know more! And if you live in Boulder definitely check out Kristin's amazing studio and home. 

*I also visited Catherine Cleary's home and studio but thought it would be more fitting on my ceramic blog at

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Mumu Whale

In anticipation of the holidays I am trying to think of some cute ornament ideas... I'm experimenting with making animals out of recycled fabric, kinda based on my cards. I am really happy with this whaley guy! He's made out of a former gigantic vintage mumu, that was actually the first fabric that inspired me to create things using recycled materials.  I'm down to scraps and pieces, but I feel like this is the mumu that keeps on giving. I think he's going to have water spouting out of a button blowhole to be hung up by.

Next I want to make an octopus! And more whales too. 

A little side note... If you live in Boulder be sure to check out the Open Studios Tour starting this weekend.  It is truly an art event not to be missed! My encaustic teacher Alix Cristian will be participating along with my clay crush Caroline Douglas. And like, 125 other artists.