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Etsy Take Five Tuesdays

Let’s see what’s happening over at Etsy today, shall we? Here are my 5 picks for the week, hope a few are new to you! We have a little folk-inspired work, ceramics, modern screen printed textiles, art for kids, and a touch of melancholy…

1. Cindy Tomczyk Art – Cindy in Chicago transforms her illustrations into letterpress cards and prints and also screen prints. Her work ranges from sweet to quirky, folksy to surreal. Don’t miss {her blog} and {her website} for a closer look at her life and art.

2. The Crosbie – Darra Crosby, Richard Antczak, and Sari Gunderson recently contacted me, they met in Savannah when they all worked at a design studio together and discovered that they wanted to leave the firm and form their own design studio so The Crosbie was born. Now living and working in Portland, OR they are doing (mostly screen printing) what they love exactly how they want to do it – by their own rules. The rows tote is my favorite, it reminds me of teacups…They will soon be offering screen printing classes in their North Portland studio so view {their blog} and their {new website} to learn more.

3. A Beautiful Party – This Illinois-based artist translates the fantasy worlds in her mind into collage pieces with characters that express emotions such as sadness, innocence, and being alone. Learn more about A Beautiful Party on {her blog}.

4. Paige Russell Design – Paige has quite an impressive resume in addition to her fine body of work as a ceramicist. She studied Fine Arts at Langara College in Vancouver and earned her BFA in Product Design from Parsons School of Design in NYC. She was then named one of the, “Top 20 young designers to watch out for” in Wallpaper magazine’s 2001 Design Directory. Her ceramic jewelry and housewares are lovely and often in expected shapes making them modern and a bit quirky. View more of her work on {her website} and over in her other Etsy shop where she sells her favorite vintage finds called {The Modern Hunter}.

5. MatiLou – I discovered MatiLou on Facebook and have been enjoying her shop updates ever since. Based in France, her work is made mainly with kids in mind – “little art for children” as she calls it. She transforms her colorful illustrations into everything from prints and calendars to iron on transfers, cards, and stickers. MatiLou also has {a website} and a {DaWanda shop}.

I hope that you’ve enjoyed this week’s round up! If you have any Etsy faves that you’d like to see featured in this column in the weeks to come, please share them below in the comments section. I cannot promise I will feature all submissions, but I can promise that I will check them out (and readers will click on your links too).

(images linked to their source above)

Posted in Arts + Crafts, etsy, Etsy Take 5 Tuesday, stationery on December 02, 2008

Artist Leslie Oschmann & Swarm Home

I was invited to attend a gallery breakfast tomorrow at Anthropologies Rockefeller Center location but of course being in Germany it is not possible (obviously!) I hope that another blogger will attend and blog about it because I’d love to see how the event turns out. It features the work of former Anthropologie visual director (for 8 years) Leslie Oschmann (full bio here) and after you view her website I think you’d also want to see her work up close and personal. Wow. Great stuff. I think it will make you look at vintage paintings a little differently, especially the ones that you find at flea markets that could use a little love… Why not add some of your own creativity to them like Leslie does?

Leslie relocated from the states to Holland and now has an Amsterdam-based studio called Swarm Home where she gives new life to old furniture and paintings found in local flea markets. Have you seen her work before? It’s just lovely. I’m quite impressed with her painting, I wonder if she is also doing decoupage in her work? I do see some needlepoint on a dresser door below that I think is exquisite and I really like the application of silk on vintage portraits because it makes the painting feel much more current and fun.

I adore mixed media art and enjoy viewing how Leslie uses many different materials to create art, combining unexpected materials takes so much talent and skill. Leslie is just one of many artists out there doing exciting things with found objects… have a look around her website and see for yourself — it is quite a fantastic visual trip!

Tip: For those who cannot paint like the talented Leslie, no worries! Have you thought of decoupage as an option? It can be done really well and seems to be gaining popularity again here in Germany (and northern .Europe in general) I love seeing decoupage, stenciling, and stamping making a comeback because it was somewhat snubbed in the interior design world and referred to as being, “Soooo bad 1980’s” or “Craft store kitsch” but if done right (take Wary Meyers for example), I think that it can be lovely. I had this feeling that the decoupage ‘trend’ could come back but when my friend gave me the current copy of the German Elle Decoration and I saw a complete spread on decoupage (used on bespoke furniture) my suspicions were confirmed. Decoupage can be done right.

(images from leslie oschmann and swam home)

Posted in Arts + Crafts, trends, vintage on December 01, 2008

Etsy Take Five Tuesday {only it’s 10 this week}

I feel like there are so many great shops on Etsy right now that to simply mention 5 is not enough today. I’m going for 10 if that’s okay with you (just for today!). Plus it’s a short work week, I’m taking Thursday and Friday off so I can give you a little extra since you’ll have to go without for a few days… Ah, it’s okay though! Logging off of the internet for a bit is super beneficial — I think we all should ‘step away from the web’ for at least one day now and then. I’m stepping away Thursday, Friday, and all day Saturday and maybe even Sunday because I haven’t done that in a very long while and I feel like there is this need to do so. I’ve been feeling super inspired lately but like many of you, have lacked follow through so I plan to jump on some of my projects while I’m not blogging… I am very excited to take a brief pause you know? Can you relate to this need to step back for a few days and unleash your creativity? No Facebook, no email, nothing… I can’t wait. But I’ll have to wait… because it’s time for Etsy Take Five Tuesday! I’ve promised you 10 shops today so how ’bout I stop talking and let you start looking and clicking around. Ready? Go!


1. Lost Teeth – The art of Seattle based Natalia Czajkiewicz features slightly edgy illustrations of worldly girls on the go. I love the strong lines and colors. ::website::


2. Sound Revolution - This body of work by an Australian graphic designer and illustrator is inspired by the conflicting and harmonious relationships that the urban environment has with the natural world. I find this an interesting theme and enjoy seeing some of the stags here and there. Stags are everywhere lately, especially in stores in Germany. Is it the same in America at the moment? Stags as a motif?


3. Ice Cream Social – This is the candy shop for those with a paper goods craving. You’ll really swoon for these beautiful lick-your-fingers designs. ::Ice Cream Social Blog::


4. New Fashioned Whispers – I found this shop over at Melissa Loves today, and the moment I saw the snowflake earrings that Melissa featured I purchased them because they are delightful for winter and very Anthropologie without the often high price tag. This shop has gorgeous jewelry with an old fashioned twist, so girly, some art decor pieces, and they are affordable — especially if you compare them with what you find at some of our favorite retail chain stores. Eek! Thanks for the tip, Melissa! (she always finds the sweetest things.)


5. Naoko’s Stoop – “Aw…” That’s the first word that came out of my mouth the second I opened the page of this darling little etsy shop. Naoka was born in Tokyo (hence this gorgeous style she has) and now lives in Brooklyn, New York. Great work, especially her pieces on wood.


6. Track and Field Designs - This is one of my favorite little crafty shops and I’m constantly doing an online drive by to see if Sasha has listed anything new. Well this time I scored because I found a few newish things that I like, sweet to add in gift packs for friends or to give to your nieces (or okay, yourself).


7. Fiery Eyed - Oh Jenifer Altman, what you do to me! She is such a beam of light, wow. Her work always impresses me, with every new photo I’m amazed. More Jenifer here on her ::website:: or her blog ::Nectar and Light::


8. Shup(G) - Lydia Wong loves a good charm necklace, she makes so many creative ones too! Lydia is offering a 10% discount until December 15, 2008 on purchases totaling $50 and above. She will amend the invoice once she receives notification of your purchase. Charmed, I’m sure!


9. Nancy Tobin – Nancy’s paintings are wild, imaginative, magical… and so colorful! I can envision one of? prints in a very modern white space or even an artsy colorful apartment against painted walls in bold jewel tones like midnight blue or purple. Her work can fit into so many different decors. Nancy has been an artist for many years, her illustrations have appeared in magazines and children’s books, she has designed toys for Hasbro and graphic design for Herman Miller. Quite a lady! More of Nancy here::Nancy Tobin Blog:: or ::website::


10. Finest Imaginary – Super fun laser cut acrylic necklaces, can you resist this tea necklace? I thought not. So cute with a dress like this one

How was that round up? What did you like best? Any new to you?

(images from shops linked above)

Posted in Arts + Crafts, etsy, Etsy Take 5 Tuesday on November 25, 2008

Giveaway: Win This Book – The Creative Entrepreneur

Update: CONTEST CLOSED NOVEMBER 2008.

I’m so excited to share The Creative Entrepreneur book today because I spoke with my contact at Quayside Publishing Group and she has agreed to do a giveaway here on decor8 – 5 books for 5 very lucky readers (1 book per winner in other words)! I’ll tell you how to enter below, but for now here’s a little show and tell a little as this book is very, very special. I think it will appeal to MANY of you which is precisely why I wanted to approach the publisher about hosting a giveaway.

The Creative Entrepreneur: A DIY Visual Guidebook for Making Business Ideas Real by Lisa Sonora Beam (founder of The Creative Entrepreneur blog/website) takes creative types on a visual journey into their soul to dig deep, find the right path, and then once on it, how to get from point A to Z. This book just may help you to figure out “What To Do When You Don’t Know What To Do”, remember that series of posts here on decor8? If not, read them all here, they are VERY inspiring. If you found those helpful I think that you’ll just love The Creative Entrepreneur because Lisa’s words as an artist, teacher, business woman…and the journal that you’ll need to create in order to successfully ‘complete’ this book will help you get on your feet heading in the right direction.

“The Creative Entrepreneur takes readers on an inner journey of creative exploration to discover how to make their dreams of creative livelihood real… it is a visual, project-oriented, step-by-step approach to business development especially for creatives.”

Psst: If you live in the Bay area, Lisa is giving a workshop for $70 next month that you may like to attend, more information on it here. She’ll also be giving another workshop in LA this March.

Want to win a copy of this book? I thought so. I will select 5 of you who comment on this post between now and Wednesday, the winners will be posted on Wednesday afternoon at 3pm EST and each will receive one brand new copy of this book from the publisher. The book is in English.

To enter: It’s easy! Simply comment below (only one entry per household) with your thoughts on this subject: What are some constructive AND destructive aspects of your personality that are directly influencing your creative process currently? Discuss at as much length as you’d like but remember, enter only one time please.

UPDATE: THIS CONTEST IS CLOSED, WINNERS WERE ALREADY SELECTED AND NOTIFIED. THANK YOU.

(images: quayside publishing, lisa sonora beam, holly becker for decor8)

Posted in Arts + Crafts, Books + Magazines, contests on November 24, 2008

Books:

Some of my books...

Further editions available: Decorate published by Murdoch Books for AU/NZ, Decorar BR, Alt om indretning DK, Inspirace pro váš byt CZ, Dekorácie SK, La décoration FR, Lust auf Wohnen DE, Sisusta tyylillä FI and Sztuka aranżacji wnętrz PL.

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