Sunday, February 21, 2010

Taking Sign Ups for Handmade Parade craft show!

Good news, I am now officially organizing my mini-craft show the "Handmade Parade" at the Long Beach Sunday Market! We will be doing the market once a month on the second Sunday of each month. If you are interested in being a vendor please comment on my blog with your info or email me at and give me your shops web info and your direct email address so I can add you to the email list. If you attended the first fair, you do not need to email me again. At this time I am limiting the group to 20 vendors and will be selecting artisans to create the best mix. The best part about handmade parade is that, at this time, we are only charging 10% of your sales for your booth fee.

Happy Sales! Denise

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Kate, make that Audrey!

Okay, so my first blog giveaway had some issues. Namely, my clue was for the wrong Hepburn! But guess what Corey from managed to still figure it out! Congrats to Corey. And here is another piece of my costume collages. I really loved how this one came out. I have boxed up all three and submitted them for publication in Somerset Studio. This will be the first time I have ever submitted anything so I will keep my fingers crossed. I know that so much can go into wether or not a piece of artwork will get published so I will not take it personally, I am sure I will have to consistently submit pieces to have any hope of ever being published, so at least I got a start!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

The Long Beach Sunday Market

So this was my first time organizing a Craft Fair. I met Kelli Johnson the Farmers Market Manager through the owner of the Vintage Emporium, where I sell my creations. Kelli wanted to combine local crafters and artisans together and I told her I would do it! I had about 20 vendors interested and of the 15 that confirmed to show, 14 showed! Not bad for a show that required no up front booth fee. Although the sales results were mixed,  so many of the vendors asked to come back! The show had a wonderful relaxed vibe to it, and was fairly busy. I think that a lot of people weren't really expecting to see so many other offerings, or were there to buy food, not other stuff. I think with time and consistency that will change and we can carve out a nice little niche. The market is only 2 months old, and gets bigger every week. I am hoping to run it again Sunday March 14th. Since the booth fee is only 10% of sales, even if you have a bad day, it's still a good day!
My friends showed up to cheer us on; Tom and Sandie (Thanks Sandi for breaking the ice on my first sale of the day!) Nan of Nansglam, Becke of OceanAvenueSilks and Annie of Anniekdesigns and Codyscloset . Nan brought me a big back of wooden cigar boxes and some very cool stones for my collage art. Annie is a property manager and unfortunately had to evict a cabinet shop owner and ended up with all of these Cabinet face samples! They are going to make some very cool pieces!
My Mom was on hand as always to help sell and she did a great job. It's always fun just to hang out.
The inventory I didn't sell will go to the Vintage Emporium on Monday. Hopefully I can sell a few pieces in the next few it Easter already!???

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Layered Inspiration Part 2- Alice in Wonderland

Okay, so maybe Alice is a little overdone, but I just can't get enough of her! I remember the first time I read Lewis Carrolls novel. I think I was in like 3rd or 4th grade. I was a very early reader and loved books. But when I read this book I just didn't get it. I was totally intimidated. I remember thinking, "I am not going to tell anyone, I have no idea what that book is about." When I saw the movie it made so much more sense! When I re-read the novel as an adult, I realize that it is supposed to be nonsense, but what a difficult concept for a young child to get! 

Okay, I have also finished my 3rd piece. I'll give you a hint. It's a black dress, all black, worn by a very famous Kate. One of my favorite books, but I have never seen the very famous classic movie that was made of it. I have a special gift for anyone who guesses the subject of my third canvas in the comments!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Layering Inspiration

One of the things I have learned from taking classes and workshops in mixed media and altered art is the importance of layering. Layering not only gives richness and texture, but also makes people look deeper into your pieces to see what little details they can find. The layering has become second nature to me, what I struggle with sometimes is the inspiration. Not necessarily the lack of inspiration, but the overwhelming amount of it. I get inspired by so many things, sometimes it's hard to sit back and pick one. So I didn't! The pieces I am working on now are not only layered technically, but they are layered in their inspiration too. The first piece of inspiration was from the Cherry Creek Arts festival in Colorado. There was an artist there that did "dress paintings" and she had these small pieces that were a mix of collage and embroidery. I just fell in love with how she used an old sewing pattern as the background, and that was my first layer!

The second inspiration was the show Project Runway. I used to make some of my own clothes in high school and have always thought about "what if?" I had gone that direction in my life. So clothing design was the next layer. The next layer was my love of classic books. There is not shortage of classics to be inspired from. So here it is my first piece, Shakespeare;

I wanted to incorporate some classic pictures to make sure the dress said, "Shakespeare". I used a combination of hand stitching and machine stitching and even some basic embroidery. I also snuck in some of me into the collage parts. You can see a tiny fragment of computer chip board right under the sleeve. The piece compliments of my dog Juno who tore apart our remote control. I am a bit of a technology geek, so that was another little layer I added. created the dress on top of some cross stitch fabric and put it into an embroidery ring to work on. I was originally just going to glue the cut out dress down, but instead raised it up to be dimensional using wine bottle corks.

I loved this little piece of map I found at French General. This amazing shop is only open on Mondays and I work Mondays, so it is very rare I get to go on a treasure hunt there! 

I also loved the way the pattern tissue give such an aged rustic look. I used a modge podge that has a little gold shimmer in it. I used foam stamps to stamp Shakespeare on the canvas. The collage parts came form everywhere. Beads, vintage buttons, a broken zipper, trim pieces, and just plain old colored papers.

I have it hanging in my hallway. Soon to be joined by two friends; Alice's dress/Lewis Carroll, and Hepburns black dress from Breakfast at Tiffanys/Truman Capote. I will post those when I am done. I would love your feedback, please leave comments or ideas of costume/literature combinations I could do.