Friday, November 27, 2009

Fun, Fun, Fun

It hardly seems possible that a week ago today I was preparing for a trunk show at a local boutique. The two weeks prior I was busy, busy, busy with all of the prep leading up to the show. Designing, designing, designing is all I seemed to do in my waking moments. Then there was the "how do I display my pieces" dilemma. Well, two antique trunks that I purchased at an antique show earlier this year seemed to be the answer. With a quick trip to the local fabric store to purchase foam and black velvet, the trunks were transformed into jewelry displays. My half-scale mannequin, Claire, insisted on coming along and showing off her "special order" offerings. A bag of white beans thrown on a sterling silver tray served up my cuffs and earrings well. I loved how it turned out. I also had my usual display case full of new pieces.

My art buddies were there to support me which I so appreciate!! There was a hat display directly across from my spot and we all just had to pick a hat and try it on. Riki actually purchased one.

Carolyn on the left just couldn't get into the fun of playing dress up so I created a hat for her through Lookin good Carolyn! I am not particularly fond of this photo of me but I just love the shot of my friends Susan and Riki on the right.

Hope you are all enjoying your Thanksgiving week. Yesterday we got together with our family which was wonderful. The food was great, spending time with our children and grand children was, as always, a highlight and seeing our 7 and 4 year old grand daughters put on a dance show for us was just priceless.....and Nana without her camera! And aren't the leftovers grand? I have my turkey soup cooking on the stove as we speak and the house spells so good.
Christmas is now right around the corner. Can you believe it? Be on the look out for a Christmas give away that I will share with you soon here.
"You use a glass mirror to see your face; you use works of art to see your soul."
~George Bernard Shaw~

Sunday, November 22, 2009


Several months ago I submitted an assemblage piece to Somerset Studio Gallery Magazine in answer to one of their challenges "Sisterhood". My spirit was compelled to create something in honor of my mother and her identical twin sister. Margaret (my mom) and Gertrude (Trudi) were born in Canada in 1920 and had a bond like no other since birth. Ten years ago, my mother passed away and left her dear sister to go on without her. "I Carry Your Heart With Me" is very symbolic and was inspired by a poem by E.E. Cummings. This piece is an assemblage collage on canvas and is spotlighted in the Winter 2010 issue now on the stands.

I Carry Your Heart With Me
E.E. Cummings
I carry your heart with me (I carry it in my heart). I am never without it (anywhere I go you go, my dear; and whatever is done by only me is your doing, my darling). I fear no fate (for you are my fate, my sweet). I want no world (for beautiful you are my world, my true) and you are whatever a moon has always meant and whatever a sun will always sing is you. Here is the deepest secret nobody knows (here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud and the sky of the sky of a tree called life; which grows higher than the soul can hope or mind can hide) and this is the wonder that's keeping the stars apart. I carry your heart (I carry it in my heart).
On the left side of the woven heart shape, you see a photo of my mom and aunt in their confirmation gowns at about age 7. Even though my mom was gone, I knew my aunt carried my mom's heart and loving spirit in her own they were inseparable. My mom is symbolized by the frozen charlotte doll with the wings in the inset. Around the sides of the canvas (not shown in the photo) I wrote E.E. Cummings' poem.
Since submitting this piece, my dear aunt passed away and now the two of them are together in spirit once again. My cousin shared with me that at the time of my aunt's passing, almost instantly a beautiful hummingbird appeared at the window next to my aunt's bed and hovered at the window peering in. My cousin knew it was my mother coming to take my aunt's hand once again to play.

-Marge and Trudi around age 10-

-Marge and Trudi almost 70 years later-

What is a "Sister"? According to the dictionary, a sister is: A female who shares a common ancestry, allegiance, character, or purpose with another or others, A kinswoman. In thinking of the sisters in my life, I first think of my biological sisters.  

-Darlene, Susan, Diana-

There's nothing like a sister to share your heart with, share your tears, your laughter, your joys, your heartaches. The closeness you share with a sister, the love, the security and unconditional love is one of life's great blessings. I have been blessed with two sisters. Over the years, there have been times when our loving bonds have been tested. During one of those times it was important to me that the three of us focus on the importance of our sisterhood. I purchased each of us a silver ring with a heart in the center and a small CZ. Along with the ring, I gave each of my sisters the following note:

A simple ring of silver... A token symbolizing our cherished sisterhood. It's shape, a continuous circle, represents the no beginning and no end of our relationship. The silver, a soft metal susceptible to stress and scratches, is much like the delicateness of our human condition. However, the integrity of the metal is strong and everlasting as our sisterhood bond.
The heart, the organ associated with love, represents the unconditional love we strive to embrace. The stone, with the multitude of facets, is not unlike the varying sides of our individual personalities. Yet, the illumination of the diamond-like gem transcends the differences between our unique spirits. The light of the stone reflects the inner soul of the heart....the eternal bond between sisters.

-My sister, Susan, and I as we celebrated our birthdays a few weeks ago.-

"Sisters are females who share a common ancestry"....and these sweethearts are my grand daughters who love each other dearly.

Sisters are "A Kinswoman"...and that is the relationship I have with my soul sister, Susan. Susan and I met when she hired me to create the floral decor for her daughter's wedding several years ago. And through the planning over the many months preceding the special event, we discovered that we must have been separated at birth. Have you ever met someone who you just knew in your heart that you had known that person your entire life. You have been walking parallel lives all these years and have finally just met. That's the way it is with my dear friend Susan. We constantly amaze ourselves how similar we are.

-Susan and me at Art Unraveled-
Sisters are "A female who shares common allegiance, character, or purpose with another or others." That would be my Art Sisters who I share not only my life with but my passion for art. Such a relationship nurtures my creative soul. I am blessed with so many "sisters" in many forms and relationships. But the common thread that runs between all the hearts is unconditional love, respect, a nurturing spirit, and kindness. For this I am so every grateful.

-(top photo L to R) Susan, Stephani, Riki and myself-
-(bottom photos L to R) Shelley, Diane and Jody-

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Do Your Best

For the last week, I have been working in my studio designing pieces for a trunk show next week.   As I took a break and picked up one of my favorite insightful books, I was reminded of what really is important when working on a project such as this.  

"There was a man who wanted to transcend his suffering so he went to a Buddhist temple to find a Master to help him.  He went to the Master and asked, "Master, if I meditate four hours a day, how long will it take me to transcend?"

The Master looked at him and said, "If you meditate four hours a day, perhaps you will transcend in ten years."

Thinking he could do  better the man then said, "Oh, Master, what if I meditated eight hours a day, how long will it take me to transcend?"

The Master looked at him and said, "If you meditate eight hours a day, perhaps you will transcend in twenty years."

"But why will it take me longer if I meditate more?" the man asked.

The Master replied, "You are not here to sacrifice your joy or your life.  You are here to live, to be happy, and to love.  If you can do your best in two hours of meditation, but you spend eight hours instead, you will only grow tired, miss the point, and you won't enjoy your life.  Do your best, and perhaps you will learn that no matter how long you meditate, you can live, love, and be happy."

The Four Agreements
Don Miguel Ruiz

So that being said, I'm off to have a massage!

Wishing you happiness today and always!


Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Inspirational Retreat

It is my pleasure to announce that my good friend Riki and I will again be team teaching a mixed media jewelry art class in 2010 called Friends of a Feather. How exciting to be teaching at a new venue in southern California in Old Agoura called Inspirational Retreat. Lisa LaRosa is welcoming people into her beautiful country home. This rustic retreat with its artisan charm and old world character makes it a perfect place for creativity to flow. Visit here to discover more about Old Agoura.

"Friends of a Feather" will be a 2-day, intensive precious metal clay and wiring workshop. On the first day, students will learn both basic and intermediate pmc techniques including sculpting, texturing, layering, working with silicon molds and then sanding, tumbling and working with patinas.

On the second day, you will take your wire wrapping skills to new heights as you learn wire-wrapped loops, a variety of clasps, orchid vine wraps, make a charming bird's nest and your own balled headpins with a butane torch.

For complete workshop details, visit the Inspirational Retreat site.

To celebrate their new retreat venue, Inspirational Retreat is offering a 10% discount to anyone who signs up for a 2010 class before the end of this year. Students signing up will also receive free lunch for both days as a holiday gift. This discount applies to all of the workshops currently scheduled.

Now's the time to give yourself an early Christmas gift or put it on your wish list. Riki and I would love to have you come and play with us May 1 & 2. I will be teaching another 2-day workshop August 7 & 8, 2010....details to follow.

Ta Ta