Posts Tagged ‘Crafts’

Halloween Fairies…

November 1, 2009

I received a call at the studio on Friday at 5 pm from a woman asking if we could make 2 floral crowns for her daughters by 1 pm Saturday.  They were going to be fairies for Halloween.  Now, floral crowns can be quite labor intensive as you have to wire each individual flower in order to weave it into a crown.  The studio closes at 6 pm.  And every Saturday I must complete 24+ very large arrangements for our weekly accounts + handle any walk-in customers/phone orders + manage retail sales of home accessories.  I nearly collapsed at the thought of 2 floral crowns.  But the woman sounded desperate and was open to any floral idea for dressing up her kids’ hair.  After discussing options with another designer, I decided to take on the challenge.

On my way home from work I picked up some inexpensive mums from another shop (since we weren’t going to the flower market in the morning).  I also purchased some inexpensive plastic head bands.  In the morning I wrapped each headband in ribbon:



And then set about decorating the headbands with flowers:



And voila!


Two, quick-and easy, floral headbands fitting for a fairy!



May 14, 2009

It gives me great pleasure to announce the release of two creative, informative, and exciting new books by two first-time authors who are dear to my heart.


The first is entitled Feltique; Techniques and Projects for Wet Felting, Needle Felting, Fulling, and Working with Commercial Felt. It is a collaboration between Nikola Davidson and the fabulous Brookelynn Morris. I’m a bit biased, yes, because Brookelynn is a friend who never ceases to amaze me with her talents, inspiration, humor, and joi de vivre. I cannot wait to get my hands on the book and try out a new craft. For all of my N. California readers, Ms. Morris will be making two book launch appearances!

Feltique is published by Random House and all rights to the image posted above belongs to them. (Please don’t step on me Random House…I’m just trying to promote your phenomenal new book :)) So everyone, go pick up a copy!!

library mystery

The second equally exciting, unique, and inspiring book is….drum-roll please…Hosting a Library Mystery by Elizabeth M. Karle. I know I’m not alone in my viewpoint that, well, libraries ROCK. Sure, the computer screen will always beckon us with it’s wealth of reliable and unreliable resources, but nothing gives back more to a local community than a library. As the world looks more and more for quick answers via technology, it is very important to nurture our libraries as the crossroads of information and inspiration that they are. In Hosting a Library Mystery Ms. Karle puts all of her years as a dedicated Library goddess to work in a fun, creative, and interactive how-to book chalk-full of ways to excite and educate library patrons of all ages. The book is an absolute gift to libraries around the world looking to invigorate and connect with the people they serve and to help library goers realize the wealth of resources available just around the corner– in the pages of books and through the knowledgeable library staff themselves. What’s more, I can say from 30 years of looking up to Elizabeth M. Karle as my big sister and role model– you can’t find a more thoughtful, intelligent, unique, and fun-loving lady around. We are all so lucky to finally have a tiny sliver of her insight and essence on the page to share. So go get yourselves a copy and let the games begin!

(Hosting a Library Mystery is published by the American Library Association and all rights to the image posted above belongs to them.)

Congratulations, ladies, on these huge milestones in your lives and creative development! I cannot wait for your next book releases and to follow along on your exciting journeys. Thanks for always inspiring me!


February 12, 2009

I have fabric-envy this afternoon. Let me explain. One of the many ways I support myself is by freelancing as a personal assistant. I worked this morning with a lovely pregnant client, 2 weeks shy of her due date. In an effort to prepare for the baby ‘s arrival I am helping to organize her home by sifting through boxes of creative projects and years of teaching. Today, I sorted (by color) 13 boxes of fabric she accumulated in the hopes of one day making/selling homemade baby toys. Vintage fabrics, used clothes, upholstery fabric, sweaters, etc. I don’t think she quite realized what an ideal task this was for me. Sorting pretty fabric by color!? I’m such a dork…but I remember throwing temper tantrums when I was a kid if my pajama’s didn’t color co-ordinate. And I don’t believe I was an unruly or snob of a kid– I was a bit of a tom boy, in fact. (Siblings, feel free to correct me if I’m wrong). But COLOR…well, everything is color to me. I can’t quite explain it, but my emotions are far too heavily swayed by color.

I’m very glad my closets aren’t swelling with too many boxes of fabric, but I do have a wee case of fabric envy. I often run to the thrift store down the street to find fabric for some hair-brained project. Often I try to make the project too quickly without taking the proper steps or thinking it through. I can spend months without sewing inspiration and then wammo, I get an idea and I want to produce it INSTANTLY. So, I’m trying to learn to be a less impatient sewer and project maker.

iBook quilted pouch, handmade by frutz

Here is a project I made a while back. It’s a quilted pouch for my Apple iBook and it is invaluable to me. I found the quilted blue fabric in the Mission district of San Francisco and the striped blue fabric (for the lining) at a nearby Goodwill store. The pocket on the outside is just the right size to fit a CD/DVD + computer cord. If I ever make another one I’d perfect the design with an additional pocket or two and perhaps a unique button on the flap. But my little white laptop slides into this pouch “just so” and can then travel in any bag or suitcase without a care.

quilted iBook pouch (closed view)

quilted iBook pouch, handmade by frutz

Another recent project involves 2 kitchen chairs my fiance found on the street a while ago. The streets of San Francisco are the Giving Tree of found objects. Rents may be high, but I swear, if you have a little patience and creativity, you never have to purchase a single item of furniture. Between (God bless you, Craig), thrift stores, and the generousity/laziness of residents who leave things out on the street, you are all set. You’d be hard-pressed to find a piece of furniture in my home which I bought. Some people might find this horrific, but if you’re a bit flexible in your expectations and needs, you can have a pretty chic home for very little. It’s by no means high lux, but my home is colorful, cozy, funky, and inviting. Our home is like a rotating gallery– we have some things which I will admit I hate, but they serve a purpose and when we find something of better quality/style, the old item goes out onto the streets and the new piece comes inside.  Many things I’d like to refinish or paint or change in some way and I slowly get around to those projects. Which leads me back to the kitchen chairs– I recently recovered these found objects with a beautiful, but un-loved sweater. I’m not a huge fan of the wood finish on the chairs, but hey, I may one day get around to changing that. But for now, I’m pretty happy with the chairs’ new outfit.