Monday, August 31, 2009

Old and Rusty

Every once in awhile I have to go out to the barn and look around to remind myself what treasures lie there. There are times when I see these 'finds' in a whole new light and gain inspiration from the most simple things.

Not too long ago I photographed some of my treasures with the idea that I would do something with them graphically.

This is a picture of a very old and rusty Singer Sewing Machine. I think it stands on its own as a work of art but I couldn't resist finding one small area to focus on the decay, the rust and wear of this beautiful machine.

When I look at this picture I'm reminded of my Grandmother's treadle sewing machine that sat by the window in her back parlor, the sun streaming down over all of its fascinating intricate parts. Considering how much that machine was valued by her, Grandma was so sweet to let me play with the treadle to see how fast I could get it to go. I'm sure she must have pulled the spool up or I would still be wrapped in a cocoon of thread.

By the way.... I still have Grandma's treadle machine. :o)

Have a great week!

Oh! And did you see my "Great Blog Award" that was so kindly given to me by Suzie from itch2stitch? Thank you Suzie!



Friday, August 28, 2009

Freebie Friday!

Gosh these next few months are busy, busy, busy. What ever happened to my day in day out quiet vigils in my studio? I'm going to try to make that happen today, so I'll leave you with something to play with in your studio.

Have fun with it.. and have a great weekend. :o)



Thursday, August 27, 2009

Green Girl Charms Giveaway On Art Bead Scene!

Such a nice little stash of mermaid charms being given away on the Art Bead Scene Blog.

Nice blog...check it out. :o)



A breath of fresh air....

As many of you know I spend most of my time hidden away on my little mountain surrounded by nature at its best. I thought I'd share pictures of one of my little buddies. He's peeking out of an old birdhouse that I had sitting in one of the gardens.

What a feeling to have such a sweet little creature eat out of your hand...look at those cheeks! It's these special moments that give me a breath of fresh air in my life. I hope you enjoyed meeting my little buddy 'Chip'.



Wednesday, August 26, 2009

And the Winner Is...... *Drum Roll*

The winner of the personalized blog background is......

MEL ! She blogs at and she's ready for an all new look. Well Mel.... what sort of magic shall we create for you?

Congratulations to Mel and thank you to all who participated.

Have a great day..... I have to get busy on Mel's new blog look :o)



Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Today is the Day!

You have the remainder of today to enter the Personalized Giveaway. My husband will draw the winning name tonight and I will announce it in the morning.

Have a great day!



Monday, August 24, 2009

Latest Piece

Just finished a couple more of my chunky charm bracelets. Here's one of them. This one is done on a 1950's charm bracelet... a bit of rust left for authenticity... some old game pieces and some wooden beads that came in their original crate dated 1958. Supposedly the man who purchased them originally made wood bead curtains. (Can you smell the pot?) lol

Anyhow... it's a fun 'chunky monkey' bracelet.

Have a good day!



Sunday, August 23, 2009


Only 2 days left for the Personalized Giveaway!
Remember it can be anything you like and is only limited by your imagination.


Here's a little Bach to make your day. Make sure you have your speakers on.

Best.. .

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Just For Fun

It was one of those times when you need to create but there is no strong muse speaking to you... me that is. So on a whim I decided to paint the fronts of my very ordinary storage drawers. It was fun and relaxing. Look closely Terri... one of the drawers says 'Dimestore'. :o) The chest on top is a recent yard sale acquisition.... fun stuff!

Reminder... Only 3 days left for the drawing on the personalized blog background. See 'Personalized Giveaway' post. Either comment or email me.

Have a great weekend!



Thursday, August 20, 2009

5 more days!

Only 5 more days before the winner will be picked for the personalized blog background!
Details are in 'Personalized Giveaway' post.

Have a great day..



Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Freebie Time

I think I've found my studio and I'm dying to create something so I'm on the run..

Here's a freebie for you!
Oh! Reminder! Only 6 more days to be included in the drawing for a free personalized background for your blog. (Read Giveaway Post) You're only limited by your imagination and my graphic skills. :o)

Background picture: My computer got 'attitude' this morning and I've been forced into low resolution. I really have very little idea how this background came out as it's all stretched funny on mine at the moment. Anyhow.. you get the idea.. lol



Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Who trashed my studio?!

Ohhhh... that's right..... it was me.... and this is what I was greeted with this morning...
But the new cabinet looks good... right?

Remember those pics of that nice neat studio that I once had?

I think I'll go back to bed now....



Monday, August 17, 2009

Tah dah!

I think my latest treasure has a fun look to it now. (You don't see that red over-spray on the driveway.. right?) What do you think? I'm sure I'll be gluing/painting/transferring odds and ends as I go along but right now it's presentable for the studio. Oh yeah, where in the world am I going to put it in the studio? Now the real challenge!



Sunday, August 16, 2009

Treasure Hunting

Once again a great day treasure hunting. I got a terrific metal cabinet with THIRTY drawers... a bit worse for wear but very cheap. I thought I'd show the before pictures while I'm cleaning it all up and then the after pictures hopefully in a few days. Lots of other goodies too including this awesome hardware. Of course someone who shall remain nameless got all the better pieces of hardware before I could get to it. ;o)

Now... about the giveaway posted yesterday for the personalized background for your blog........ Some people say they have trouble posting a comment .. that it won't work for them. So in all fairness if you send me an email letting me know where to find your blog with the link then I will enter you as well. Remember, the deadline is August 25th!



Saturday, August 15, 2009

Personalized Giveaway

I am going to create a personalized blog background as a giveaway. It's like a new toy. .. first I didn't know about backgrounds.. then I found a freebie... then I broke down the code and started making my own. If you come by regularly you probably have noticed I've changed it 4 times in as many days. :o)

I should say that I don't believe this will work for typepad people. It seems you have to run typepad pro in order to insert a background for your blog. I do know that this code works beautifully in blogspot and perhaps other blog engines.

Here's the deal.... If you post a link to my blog for this giveaway on your blog and leave me a comment here letting me know that you've done it... you're entered....OR email me to give me the link to your blog. I think 10 days should be a good time frame so on August 25th I will have my husband pull a name out of the hat (have to find a hat), I will notify you and we will start a dialog of what you'd like for a border. It can be most anything at all and totally personalized/one of a kind for you. I will even house the image on my server for you.

That's it.... link and comment... and you're in!

Have a great weekend!



Friday, August 14, 2009

Do you love little worlds?

It seems many mixed media artists have a special fondness for miniature worlds... tiny things... and I'm certainly no exception.

Christine Schukow takes tiny things and makes miniature worlds. She tells stories with her dioramas. She is the lady whose website I just completed and I asked her if I could feature her this morning. Wait until you see these little gems. Some of them are lighted... some are animated... but they're all beautifully done.

Visit Christine Originals and see for yourself how you can get lost in these little worlds.



Thursday, August 13, 2009

A New Project

Well the website is complete ... yay! I think I'm half blind and crippled but other than that it was a huge success.

On to something new... I've decided to make some greeting cards using my photography of the Hudson Valley. I'm calling them 'Hudson Valley Views' by Canace. Here is a low resolution sampling of some of the photographs that I've used so far.

This was taken in the historic district of the City of Newburgh overlooking the Hudson River. I love the old Victorian architecture and this gate is one of my favorite shots.
This next shot is once again Lake Minnewaska

The following picture is of the old D&H Canal in autumn. It's one of our favorite places to hike with the dogs. Lots of straight stretches where they can run like the wind.
Not far from here is a wildlife sanctuary called the Basha Kill. It's over 2000 acres of wetland and home to an amazing array of birds, reptiles and fish. The most notable is the Bowfin which has been classified as a prehistoric fish that can breathe both in the water and on land. We've spent many an hour fishing from our canoe on the Basha Kill. We're also members of the association to protect this preserve. Can you feel the serenity?
My whole life I was fascinated with Bannerman's castle that sits on a small island in the middle of the Hudson River. About 8 years ago we had the opportunity to canoe out to the island during a Hudson River clean-up operation. Imagine my excitement to not only set foot on this island but to be able to wander around taking photographs to my heart's delight. (I nearly cried) lol
There are quite a few more pictures that I'm using but I thought this was a good sampling to give you the idea.

Back to work!



Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Another freebie...

Burning the midnight oil here on that website... no time to play..

So... here's another goodie for you to use in your work/play. :o)



Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Deadline Freebie

I've got Friday for a deadline on a website that I'm designing.... 4 more links/pages/galleries to go. *Breathe*
It's always nice to see a website come together and it's just in time for a huge trade show so I hope she does very well.

That aside.... I'm on the run.... so once again a freebie. :o)



Monday, August 10, 2009

It's Happy Freebie Time

Of course that title is sung to the tune of 'Howdy Doody'. Please don't tell me if you don't know the Howdy Doody song... I'm still recovering from my recent birthday... lol

This image is from a huge book I purchased a few years back, published in 1892. I have scanned in quite a few images from the book so will add more as time goes on. In the meantime have fun with this one. Click on the image to get the larger version. I think this is a good one to have because you have the nice blank space to add whatever you like. Have fun with it and have a wonderful week.



Sunday, August 9, 2009

A Great Day and a Huge Success

It started out with a few @#$!'s ... mishaps one after another, but it turns out our show yesterday at the Pine Bush Art Tour was a huge success! The weather was only perfect... 70's and the occasional fluffy cloud. The turnout was amazing for a small town.. people milling everywhere. Janet, my daughter Brianne and I all had sales plus we made some great connections and met some fun and interesting people. I was even interviewed for the local newspaper! :o) The reporter took a picture of me with my daughter so we will have our 15 minutes of fame in about 2 weeks.Of course Janet made the first sale... she always does. (Makes you wonder why we're best friends huh?) ;o) Seriously, I was very happy for her and I always am. Turns out she sold a necklace that she'd just finished and hadn't photographed though. But... she's got a nice commission from yesterday... I'll let her tell you about it. She looks like she's straight from Jamaica, eh mon?Brianne's spider necklaces sure got a lot of attention... I think she's onto a hot idea. They looked awesome in this old gothic frame that I picked up a few weeks ago. She had a great time, did well, and it was wonderful having her with us. And... she got a call from New Hampshire that a major piece of hers sold as well!
I wish you could see the glitz and glitter of all her amazing bracelets and necklaces in the cases too. I'm prejudiced, I know. :o) I must say I'm glad she left her vampire teeth home... lolIt was so nice to see people's enthusiasm .. their excitement over artwork that was 'different' from most they'd seen. They really do have an appreciation for things that are unique. Aside from the customers it was just so nice to be caught up with fellow artists, see their work and hear about their sales. The sense of community was so much fun.

Next show... September 12th... whew!



Friday, August 7, 2009

On the run freebie... Love those old ads

A very busy day today so I will leave you with one of my old advertising favorites. Aren't the colors so vivid and beautiful?

Have a great weekend!



Thursday, August 6, 2009

Show this weekend in Pine Bush

Well once again Janet and I are doing a show this Saturday. This one is sponsored by the Pine Bush, N.Y. Chamber of Commerce. It's called the Pine Bush Art Tour and I think it's going to do well as they have promoted very well, both online and in newspapers, flyers in stores etc. I'm sounding optimistic aren't I? lol At least the weather is looking perfect... 78 degrees and partly cloudy. :o)

My daughter is here for a visit and to participate as well with her jewelry. I hadn't seen half of what she'd done except on Etsy and when I saw the treasure trove last night I was stunned. The pics on etsy really do not do justice to the brilliance and beauty of her work. I think she will do very well on Saturday.

My 'sweet little girl' has grown up with a passion for the macabre' ... must have something to do with all the excitement around Halloween when she was growing up. She should charge admission to her house when she hosts her Halloween parties... animated figures... fog machines... spooky lighting... I can't even begin to describe it. (Would you believe walking/talking brains???) It really could be a public 'Haunted House' attraction. Gearing up for her favorite holiday, here is one of her new jewelry pieces... a Halloween charm bracelet with pewter charms and Swarovski crystals. Look at the cute little coffin it comes in.... lol... that's my girl!And how's this for creepy? A spider necklace!
Her Etsy shop is Mystikal1981 if you want to have a peek. We are going to work on some better lighting and pictures so stop back later too if you can.

Janet is working fast and hard on her collection of bottle cap jewelry for this weekend as well. I swear she is the resin queen. :o) She has used Alice in Wonderland and Wizard of Oz as her theme pieces that should do well for the show. Maybe she'll have some pictures for you later on or feature them in her Etsy shop.

I guess that's enough shameless promotion for today. :o) If you're local it would be great to have you stop by to see us on Saturday along with all the other great Hudson Valley artists that will be there.



Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Hudson Valley Freebie

I've always said the Hudson River flows in my veins ... what an amazingly beautiful and historic valley this is. I thought I'd share a bit of the valley and mountains with you today.

The Hudson River School of Artists began the first and most powerful art movement in our country. Many of their paintings are from 'my' mountains and I've walked the 'Artist's Walk' where many of them found their breathtaking aspects to paint. One of them is 'Artist's Rock' at North Lake in the Catskills. Here is a view from there on an overcast day.
A favorite subject for the Hudson River School was the Kaaterskill Falls. Not too far from there is where Rip Van Winkle is said to have slept his life away. I think you can see how the imagination can soar in these mountains.

This is the Kaaterskill Falls as Hudson River School founder Thomas Cole saw it:
As you might know, there is a very strong Dutch and Indian influence in the names of our lakes and streams. One of these lakes is 'Lake Minnewaska'. It's one of our glacial lakes, a pristine turquoise lake high in the Shawangunks. Here is a picture that I took from the far shore.
I hope you enjoyed your tiny tour of this beautiful valley. Trust me... I could have an entire blog just about the Hudson Valley and all of its splendor.

So of course... on to the freebie :o)

In honor of Washington Irving who lived in the Hudson Valley at Sleepy Hollow, here is a vintage cover from 'Rip Van Winkle' for you to use in your work.



Monday, August 3, 2009

Time really does fly....

Just recently I had (yet another) birthday and it's made me very nostalgic. Where does the time go??? I was just 16 a few years ago... no??? One of the things that most brings back memories is music.

Here is a video of Jay and the Americans that you might enjoy. While there you will see links to the awesome Roy Orbison's 'Crying'. Once you listen to that, don't miss 'It's Over' which was my favorite. It was great ammunition when you were breaking up with your boyfriend. ;o) Somehow after listening to that song you just couldn't break up after all.

Make sure you allow some time and turn up the volume because if you're anything like me you will be there for some time.... walking down memory lane.

If you want to see The Diamonds singing 'Little Darlin' before and later this is a good video as well.


Make every day special.... it's only a short moment in time.



Saturday, August 1, 2009

A Broken Promise

I promised myself when I finally decided to start a blog that I would keep it positive and uplifting. I didn't want it to be a personal forum for pity parties, politics or controversy. I have to make the exception now. I believe it's a responsibility to speak out when you know that something is terribly wrong and dangerous to the American people.

I'm speaking of products imported from China. It's no secret that foods have been banned in the past. Food made in China has poisoned and killed our dogs, seafood was banned because it contained dangerous cancer causing chemicals and antibiotics, toys made in China were a threat to our children as they contained lead based paints. I think we all know that China does not uphold the standards that we do when it comes to product safety, yet more and more products every day are being imported and consumed by us. From -The amount of food imported from China has grown dramatically in the past decade. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the United States imported $4.1 billion worth of seafood and agricultural products from China in 2006. In 1995, it was $800 million.

This hit home to me a few months ago while shopping in our local Hannfords. How shocking it was to me to see a sign posted over the broccoli saying 'Product of China'. I spoke to the young man in the produce department and asked if there was a way to register a strong complaint about it and he referred me to the suggestion box. I did in fact register a complaint for all the good it might do. (They still sell broccoli from China) There is strength in numbers and we all need to educate ourselves to the seriousness of this situation. If we allow a simple thing like broccoli to become acceptable then more and more produce and other real foods from China will be contaminating our country. I would like to believe that any and all of you would also lodge a complaint and refuse to buy products from China.

Perhaps the following information from would be more persuasive:

  • 60% of all recalled products in the USA are from China
  • 5 types of fish are banned from China for the cancer causing chemicals and antibiotics including malachite green which helps fish survive in polluted fisheries.
  • A deadly toxin was found in cough medicine made in China
  • Pigs in China are force fed waste water to fatten them for market
  • Dairy cows are fed so many antibiotics they can't produce yogurt from their milk
  • Lard from China made from sewage
  • Diethylene glycol, a solvent found in antifreeze was being used in toothpaste made in China
  • Formaldehyde, illegal dyes and industrial wax were being added to candy, pickles, crackers and seafood
  • Etc .. etc.. etc

Zhou Qin, a dissident writer who has researched China's food standards said he believes the situation is much worse than anyone realizes.

Farmers and producers, he said, are continually finding new and dangerous ways to cut costs. He cited the example of a farmer in the south who he said deliberately added a cancer-causing chemical to pigs because it made the flesh look better and less fatty. When he challenged the farmer about the potential health dangers, Qin said he replied, "People in the city get free health care."

"The threat is so much more serious than people could ever imagine," Qin said. "China has low labor costs, but you can work out how low the price should be. Businessmen should know something is wrong if the product is cheaper than it should be."

The following are among the top food products from China brought into the United States:

• Apple juice

• Mandarin oranges

• Confections/candy

• Dried garlic

• Cocoa butter

• Hog guts, bladders, stomachs for sausage casings

• Dry berries

How disconcerting to know that prepared foods are required to list the ingredients in their product, but they're not required to tell you where they got those ingredients.

I believe it's time, even during this difficult economic time, to remember the pride of the 'Made in USA' label, to be willing to pay for quality rather than quantity, knowing that quality is according to USA standards. Perhaps American companies will think twice about outsourcing to save money on labor if we refuse to buy their products... especially from CHINA.

I apologize for not bringing you something uplifting or creative today. It was time... and is time.... to make a difference.