Free Giveaway in Appreciation!

In celebration of almost 1000 likes on my Facebook Page, I will be giving away one of my jewelry pieces.  To be in the running all you have to do is like my facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/sharonorellaArt.  Please feel free to leave me a note when you do, I love to hear from folks.

To see what you could win check out my website at www.sharonorelladesigns.com.       Tell your friends and if they like my page they will be int he running as well.  It is only about 20 people to reach 1000…  Good Luck!

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Bag, Bags and More Bags

I am always on the hunt for hand bags, purses, accessories that hold more accessories, by whatever name you call them, they are essentially bags.   Here are some of my favorite hand crafted bags made in America.  My criteria, you ask… well… Leather construction, bags must be lined, have a good shape and plenty of room.  (Each image is a link to where you can purchase the bag, if you are so inclined)

Double Zipper Bag in Sand

Madeline Chadwick Handbags Based in Los Angeles

Genuine leather. Silver hardware. Two open interior pockets and one zipper pocket. Custom lining.

 

SALE - Ready to ship - Larch leather bag in black

Handmade by ValhallaBrooklyn     Larch bag in buttery soft and sturdy black pebble grain premium grade cow hide

 

Everyday Bag

Handmade by ContraBandCouture      Butterscotch brown with, Two pockets on the faux gator inserts outside,  front and back along with three pockets on the inside paisley print lining.

 

 

Red Rose & Thorn Lasercut Lambskin Leather Ruffle Crossbody Bag

Handmade by DahlingAccessories

Red rose super soft lambskin lined with gray woven fabric. Ruffle flap at front with steel spike details.  Inside flap is grey Italian leather. Magnetic snap closure. Red leather reinforced crossbody strap that can be tied at end to adjust length. Inner pocket.   Fully lined. Dahling satin inside label on pocket.

 

Luella Bag Custom Color Option

Handmade by LolaFalkDesigns and made to order  Custom color bag

Exterior: Leather
Lining and Interior Pocket: Cotton
Closure: Metal Zipper
Adjustable Strap: Leather (can be lengthened/shortened to be worn cross-body or over shoulder)

Beachy Book Pages

I had some fun this weekend at the beach, playing with my book pages, paints and pencils.  I had a vague idea of what I might want to work on, and since I only had a few days, I thought it would be perfect to start some drawing and maybe even color some in with paint.

 

Good thing I had my stuff, the weather ran quite the gamut over the weekend.  First it rained (totally expected, as it is Oregon)  then on Saturday the blessed sun came out, this pushed me outside to absorb the warmth and color! (the whole beach lights up with color when the sun comes out)  Then on Sunday it snowed!   I was greatly amused by the changes in the weather as they were so extreme.  It fit me perfectly, as I never do anything in a logical to others order.   You would think the weather would go in order of sun, rain, snow, not rain sun snow… oh well, chalk it up to the wonders of the world…

Before I left I had finished a drawing and painted it and applied it to my notebook. I used a page from an old book to draw and paint on and then applied it to my notebook using Golden Matte Medium. 

While I was there I drew and painted one for the other side.  This page is also an old book page but you really cannot tell due to the amount of paint used.

I am seemingly obsessed with my little chickens and they seem to come out of the woodwork no matter where I go.  Yes, I even draw in restaurants.  On napkins, you question?  Nope, I carry a tiny wallet type purse, and I have managed to always keep a set of white index cards and a pen in there.   Very handy for when the order takes a while and your companion (read husband) runs out of conversation.

C’est la vie

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Upcycle? Recycle? Reuse? Repurpose?

What does this all mean when you’re a creative person?  Well, for most it means instead of throwing something away, either find another way to use it or put it in the recycle bin.   That is if your community will recycle it.   In some areas of the country there are community reuse places that you can take your, still useful items in hopes that someone else will find your trash to be a treasure.

Near where I am we have a place called Scrap (School Community reuse action program) it is not all that near to me, but I will make a special trip to get there.   Most of the time though I am a shopper there, but thankfully, there are many that make donations to them.   For example they have lots of fabric, upholstery and wallpaper sample books, yarn, tiles, paper, envelopes etc.   All of which are very reusable to make useful and decorative items.   I have picked up many a large fabric sample to make pillow or handbags.   For the longest time they had a barrel full of corks.  I could never figure out what I could make from a cork, but others did because they dwindled down to nothing eventually.

Perhaps one of my favorite spots is the book and magazine corner, where you can find books and magazines for pennies.   Or the paper corner where you buy office paper for 25 cents an inch.   (measured by the height of your stack)  Sometimes you can find envelopes with no return address, those are great!   But they also have some with a return address which are easily upcycled by sticking your address sticker over theirs.   Scrap keeps so much stuff out of landfills each year just by redistributing it, that they deserve a recycle award!   Besides I have no idea where I would find a barrel of corks or belt blanks to be re-purposed. Would you?

Just recently I incorporated some glossy cardstock from Scrap into my gift tags.  The original sheets were 8 1/2 x 22, so required some cutting down before I could punch them.   It took longer to punch them as they are pretty sturdy, but it was worth it.  The paper is wonderful with my tags.   It embossed beautifully and I am very happy with it.

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tree Ornament Gift tag

 

I encourage everyone to donate to their local reuse program and to shop there.   You just never know what you will find…

P.S. I found one in San Francisco too..  Scrap (Scrounger’s Center for Reusable Art Parts)  Love it!!

To see more please visit my shop on Etsy at http://www.etsy.com/shop/SharonOrella

Have a great day!

Confessions of a Magazine addict….

Yes, it is hard to say, but I am a magazine addict.  I think I come by it honestly, genetically, from my mother’s side of the family.   I wasn’t always one, there was a time when I only bought the occasional holiday Magazine to make a cookie recipe or for a decorative technique to spruce  up the holidays.   Mostly, I think that was because there was no money for magazines and the choice was limited.   I remember visiting my aunts in my early twenties, one had magazines in every possible cupboard (even in the bathroom, yes no towels in the linen closet, just magazines).  My other Aunt had a special VERY  long cabinet (like 15 feet long) that the entire bottom had her collection of magazines.   I could not fathom, why they would have SO many, at the time.

I promised myself that I would never be that bad.  Then I met my husband, who read several different magazines, and convinced me to subscribe to a quilt magazine that I had been picking up at the drugstore.  Now this was before there were tons of these on the shelves like there are now.  It was difficult to find a quilt magazine with block patterns at the time.   So, I subscribed, and I saved every issue, they were like books to me.   It was all I subscribed to for about 4 years.   Then quilt magazines started coming out more and more and I subscribed at one time to about 6 of them.   I kept them all, think I would get to all the lovely patterns inside them.   I did actually sit down and go through them looking for patterns for several years and was greatly inspired by them.   That was my downfall, the inspiration factor.   It wasn’t that I would always make something from the patterns inside them, it was that I would be inspired to make something similar with my own twist, that was the addiction making itself evident.

I stuck with Quilt magazines for about 10 years as I practiced my craft.   It was then that I found the courage to finally toss the first 4 years of Quilt magazines.   I realized I had stopped referencing them and had no space for them, so off they went.  To the garage, where they languished for about a year, before I could let them fully go.   It was also around this time that I started expanding my artistic horizons and was inspired by painting and other hobbies.   I eventually stopped all my quilting subscriptions except for ones that came out only a couple of times a year so that I could keep a hand in the quilt world.

Now, I subscribe to beading and paper and Quilt magazines.   I save most of them, they are inspiring when I feel like creating.   But, I have to be careful, if I feel like working with paper and open a  beading magazine the two will collide and I will begin to try to merge the two.  Sometimes this is ok, and other times a complete disaster.   Like ironing fusible to wrapping paper and then trying to iron it onto paper.   Did you know paper warps badly when heated?  I do….

Have a great week and if you have time check out some of my new tags on etsy… Click here

Here are some pictures of some of my newer tags for the holidays. . .

When to start the Holidays

During this time of year, many begin the discussion about when is it appropriate to start seeing Thanksgiving and Christmas promotions.    Halloween by this time is a given, and although it seems to get bigger every year, it usually stays within a Sept – Oct timeframe for the most part.   There might be some random things you see earlier but usually they are delegated to the crafter community that needs a head start to finish creating in time for Halloween.

Thanksgiving although a good celebration for families and friends, is not as heavily promoted as Christmas and Halloween and really does not require the preparation that the Christmas Celebration does.    Every year, I think that the distance between Thanksgiving and Christmas gets shorter and shorter.  It doesn’t really but I love  a wonderful Christmas and it takes time to build that.   Unless you like to rush around panicking about where everything is and what you need to replace and what you’re going to get for Aunt Sue and Uncle Jim.   Then you start planning for it early.   I prefer to take it in stride and start planning in October for Christmas.   This means, yes I am working on it NOW.   Part of what I do is create for the holidays, so some of that takes place in July (even tho it can be difficult to get into the Christmas Spirit when it is 80 outside)  but I enjoy it.   I want to share with you what I have in store so far for the holidays.  I hope you will check them out and start preparing for your best holiday yet.  Of course you can find them all on Etsy in my store.   http://www.etsy.com/shop/SharonOrella

 

 

A little bit of everything for your summer vacay or staycation. . .

As we head into the weekend, I realize that it is the middle of July.  We are past celebrations for the 4th, and there are no major holidays until Labor day.   Many are almost ready to go on their annual vacation, whether that be a staycation or a trip to the coast or to visit family, we all want to have some fun.   I was thinking about our annual trip to the Oregon Coast where we relax and just enjoy our selves for a couple of weeks.   I always take lots of different things to play with while we are there, and for me that means being crafty, or arty in some way.   This made me think about what types of supplies I might want to take with me and of course I went on a search of Etsy.    Here are a few of the items I found that would be good to take along…

For the sewer/quilter:

Nature Inspired Collection by Windham.  

Riley Blake Happier Sampler

For the jewelry maker:

Lucite Pansy Flower Beads – Mixed Color

AAA – Mixed Precious Rondelles – Ruby, Emerald and Sapphires – 1/2 Strand

For the cook:

Vintage Better Homes and Gardens New Cook Book circa 1953

For the knitter/Crocheter:

Worsted weight Sock Yarn, Hand Dyed Merino Wool Tweed Randomly Variegated Vermillion, Dusty Rose and Burgundy 4 oz. 200 yards

Hand Dyed Worsted Weight Yarn – Mission Fig

Oregon Timber Brown DK Alpaca Yarn (50 g)

And finally for the scrap booker:

Tanithsoddsandends

Freshmemoriesstudio
 
 
If you need a project check out Red heart for free crochet and knitting patterns!
 
Here is a 3 part tutorial on making resin jewelry:
 
Part 1:
 
Part 2
 
Part 3: