Thursday, January 31, 2008

CSerpent Comes Into The Blog!

Susan Estrada, from San Diego, is the owner of cserpent Designs where you can find uniquely designed and created watches, bracelets, earrings, necklaces and other beaded items like bookmarks, cell phone straps, sun catchers, spiders and as she says, "whatever else looks interesting." Susan has some of her jewelry available at Gili Anna, a brick and mortar shop in La Jolla, CA.

The photo above is of a gorgeous bracelet that looks good enough to eat and is named Hot Cha Cha.
The photo below is a Blue Raku and Gold Letter Opener. (As in Miss Scarlett did it in the Library with the Blue Raku and Gold letter opener.) However I must say I don't think anyone would want to do any sort of nasty deed with this attractive piece. It's hard to imagine using it for anything but decorating a desktop that I am also imagining has beautiful stationery sitting on it in attractive boxes. I will have to imagine that desktop, because in the real world, mine has an assortment of piles, phone, monitor and keyboard, and stuff -- lots of stuff!

Susan says that the name for her business and Etsy shop came about because, "my husband nicknamed me Sea Serpent during our scuba diving days (picture a tall person in a purple and black drysuit with a pink flotation vest coming out of the water with big black fins on her feet ... yep sea serpent fits!). He even got me a sea serpent stamp to use for my "signature" on my hand made cards. Since I couldn't fit seaserpent on a license plate I changed it to cserpent and I've been using that for my business name ever since."

That brings us to "Tilly" the multi-purpose turquoise spider shown in the next photo. Apparently she can be worn in various manners. Susan says, "I will attach her to either the barrette or pin or will add a split ring so you can hang her from a chain as a pendant. . . Let me know how you want to wear her and I'll fix her up before shipping."

Living on a lake, I can vouch for the realism involved, as the real ones seem to propagate really fast, and webs mask things which were actually vehicles the evening before. The little culprits are there waiting in the morning just hanging out, smiling as if to say, "Look what I just did." I wish our arachnids were pretty and turquoise, then I would have to admire them, bless their little hearts.

Please visit Susan to see more of her beautiful jewelry and unique items at:

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Witty Workshop

Valérie Parizeault, a Canadian Illustrator and designer from Montreal, is the owner of the Etsy shop named Witty Workshop. She is a graphic designer and an art teacher at times, and she also has another internet business known as Rose Flash which spotlights her playfully-spirited jewelry.

Valerie states, "I am truly living my dream life as an artist with my husband-cherie by my side and my black cat Tokyo (nicknamed minou)." She describes herself as a treehugger, a chocolate passionate, a coffee conoisseur, a French Canadian, a daydreamer, a wannabe yoga wiz and a good cook.

The Best Friend Series, her latest, features limited edition paints of her childhood pal, Merguez the Doxie, and is printed on 11 x 8 1/2-inch Archival quality Hanemüle FineArt paper with a white border included for perfect framing. Other pets in the series are a ferret, a bunny, koi fish, and the above-named cat whose name is Tokyo. Below is the Tea Party Postcard Set.

Here are some of the things Valerie loves followed by those she has a strong dislike for: She loves Feist & Coral Egan (singers), reading really late, antiques of all sorts(she collects them), all things graphic design-related, especially typo, shoes, graphic patterns, blogging and taking pictures. She dislikes the word hate, electronic cords, talking on the phone, the smell of celery, waiting in line, beer, over talkers and drama queens.

I am definitely with you on the love for shoes (but mine would be the kind you wear on your beautiful feet) and I also have a distaste for waiting (in line, in the doctor's office, for a table, for whatever. I say, "Why not be late! (Oh, just a little late). Then you never have to wait."

This illustration shown below is entitled "Cutting Rain" is an ACEO.

To find Witty Workshop go to:

Monday, January 28, 2008

Quirkynberkley. . . How so?

Today's featured shop is Quirkynberkley. Right away I clicked on the peacock card, because I've had some experience with peacocks. They are so strange, silly even, and yet so beautiful -- the idea of having to haul around that incredible tail, no wonder they have those strong, strong-looking legs. Besides, peacocks are complicated. They have feathers that are irridescent, and well, Quirky has done a lovely card.

Quirkynberkley's name is actually Carol, and she does live in Berkeley. She's on the following street teams: Etsy Irish, CCCOE, EtsyGreetings, BEST, BBEST, EtsyPaper.

"Love paper. Love color. Love Berkeley. Love Etsy."
Happy girl!

Carol says she, "has always loved playing with it (paper, that is). Been making cards since I was 7 or 8. Inspiration? I like to find a focal point and explore all the different things I can do with it. I'm inspired by the capacity of humans to create art, to take disparate elements and bring them together to create something unique and new."

Up to this point, Carol's cards have all been created without the aid of a computer. Says Carol whose background is in publishing, "I have a strong sense of modular layout that governs the general layout of all of my work. More interestingly, though, I think it's the paper or stamp that I'm working with. Sometimes it takes several days of looking at something before I decide exactly how I want to use it. I'm also a fan of trying traditional paper engineering techniques like various folding and cutting techniques that reflect the culture in which they originate.

I got started in my craft when I became ill and found I needed a hobby. I discovered rubber stamping, and moved from there to all sorts of other paper engineering techniques such as origami and dry embossing, as well as scrapbook-style cards. I'm interested in learning the gocco style of screen printing."

Go and visit Carol (Quirkynberkley) at these sites:

Friday, January 25, 2008

George McKim - Freedom of Expression

Today I am featuring the Etsy shop of George McKim, who is also an visual artist.

If you haven' t had a chance to visit George's website, by all means do. It gives so much insight into his process of evolving art. Shown are the numerous steps he goes through to achieve his final product in the different projects he is working on. It's all very interesting.

Shown above is Springtime Explosion, but look to see what it took to create the numerous collages to finally arrive here.

George was born and grew up in Wilmington, NC, USA. For the past 15 years he has lived in Raleigh, NC with his wife Betty who is a jeweler of some renown with her own website and a degree in Metals and Jewelry, his two adult children Edward and Devin who are twins, their golden retriever Sophie and their cat, Woodstock. (Amazing how many Etsians are cat fanciers, isn't it?)

George says, "I studied art in college and have a Masters Degree in Painting and Drawing. My artwork has been shown in galleries and museums in my region. My day job is working as a pre-press graphic artist for a printing company and I make my art in my "spare time". Since I was a kid I have always drawn pictures and painted. I like the freedom of expression of art and have always enjoyed painting."

George has a wonderful description on his blog telling how how he has created his great sunflower linoprints. The intricacies of carving a linoleum block are not lost on me, nor is the process of applying the right amount of ink. However, George seems to have mastered the process. Have I mentioned yet that his day job is in printing?

This is what George has to say about the Pink Cubist Guitar shown at left:

"This collage is a homage to the great art movement known as Cubism, you know with that guy, what's his name? Umm, oh yeah, Picasso and that other guy named Braque. It's an abstract design based on the shape of a guitar. I think this is one of the best collages I've ever done, even if I do say so myself! It's a tip of the hat to the great Cubist painters, but it's light and lively yet subdued and classic. The paper size is 11" x 14" and it has some white border area. With a really nice framing job this collage will look stunning , don't you agree?" And yes, I do.

Be sure to visit George and enjoy his prolific art at:

Creative Artists Guild Art Show Tomorrow

Yep, that's right. Show tomorrow. Dunedin, Florida. Pioneer Park. 10 AM - 4 PM

So today is filled with last minute matting, pricing, spreadsheet entry, framing, etc. Shows for me aren't just pack up and go, and probably not for most artists no matter what category of shows they do. There are always new paintings to mat up, and the other assorted chores to take care of to get your items looking topnotch and try to be organized for the show. But it's what we do to hopefully see some of our "children" adopted out to loving homes.

Creative Artists Guild has 80+ members and was founded more than 20 years ago in Dunedin. It is a group of talented artists of all sorts who have a core group of exhibiting artists among the group, all of whom have been juried in by committee. It is this core group who will be exhibiting at Pioneer Park tomorrow. Pioneer Park is just one block east of the charming Main Street shops, and the weather, at least for the first half of the day, is expected to be good.

See y'all.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Cats Paw Artifacts

Judy Richards the owner of Cats Paw Artifacts, aka Catldy99 , says her shop is named after what else? Her cats. Does she have 99 cats? (To be disclosed later.)

Judy, a magna cum laude graduate who obtained her BA in Technical Theatre from the University of Minnesota, has also taken coursework in Graphic Design as well as in lampworking. She has bead weaving for about 10 years and making beads for about 5, and is a member of the International Society of Glass Beadmakers. She lives in Portland, Oregon.

Exceptional Funny Valentine Vessel Necklace (above)

Beautiful lampwork bracelet (at left)

Judy says she is also is also a member of the Portland Bead Society and the ORBS (Oregon Regional Beadmakers Society).

Judy makes lampwork beads and designs jewelry - unique and hopefully artful jewelry. She is always striving for new ideas, new shapes in glass.

She says that she is inspired by nature (flowers, birds) depicted in glass. She loves abstract lampwork most of all with layers of glass and complexity, and that she is always striving to that goal.

"She has done the work of reasonably exact glass beads - but yearns to break out of that toward something more complex and deep in an artistic sense. She also has a sense of humor and doesn't take herself too seriously - she is the owner of 2 cats, hence the cat beads. Judy likes to laugh and make others smile with her work."

Lovely necklace with lampwork pendant

Cats Paw Artifacts can be found at:

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Giftbearer, Pippit Carlington, Setting Trends in 2008

Giftbearer, Pippit Carlington says, "The name of my business really is a way of life for me. I wanted to choose a name that summed up in a nutshell what I'm about and described the purpose behind the jewelry I make. For me making jewelry is more than art-for-art's-sake, it's a way for me to contribute something to others on a level that connects as a call-to-action. I believe that every action we make in the world has a ripple effect for better or worse."

Pippit has been making jewelry seriously since her now 24 year-old son was born. She says she had never really thought making jewelry could be her career until that time. She has progressed through working in wood to using copper and soft solder, then to beadweaving, and several years later went on to study at the Atlanta Jeweler's School and Studios to learn traditional metalworking techniques. In 2000 she became officially licensed, and since that time as worked at jewelrymaking full-time. Her work has consistently been sold in stores in Atlanta and at juried and non-juried shows.

The Hint At Something Deeper necklace, above, "is very special and one-of-a-kind. It took many hours to complete. You are sure to be noticed from across the room with it on. Watch for it in Ornament Magazine!"

The Leafhearted-Fine Silver Violet Leaf Earrings are set with beautiful amber cabochons. Such a wonderful contrast would look good with almost any coloring.

Pippit says, " I see myself as an ambassador and tend to act in that capacity in everything I do whether it is serving on a board for some political or social issue such as disability rights or in touching the heart with certain types of art to gain the acceptance of certain styles, materials, and techniques, and to promote a living wage for artists who seek to make their living through their art."

We, who have been a part of the 90-day Challenge, have Pippit to thank for instigating and shepherding this effort in order for the participating artists, and Etsy indirectly, to have the opportunity to benefit from the enhanced publicity, and to make contacts and friendships with others, hopefully resulting in increased sales. Thank you for all you have done in this regard, Pippit.

Here Pippit tells us how she found out about Etsy, and gives us another reason to admire her and to regard Etsy more highly. "I heard about Etsy soon after Hurricane Katrina when I was looking for some way to contribute proceeds to the survivors when I came across something on Google about Crafters United and what they were doing to organize artists to contribute to the fund to benefit those who were displaced and needed help. I contacted them and found that they were selling the items that had been donated on Etsy. Several things of mine sold right away, so then I opened up an Etsy store of my own."

Giftbearer can be found at these locations:
Mindt (items available in this store soon)

Pay Pippit a visit soon to see more beautiful jewelry. Also she is announcing a new promotion:

"The first 3 people to purchase $40.00 or more in an order from me will receive a FREE pair of earrings in their package. I will begin making an assortment of different styles and colors now and then post pictures on Flickr so that buyers can choose the pair they want. They will be described beneath each picture as "90/90 special offer". To receive this special, buyers must include the promo code 90/90 DreamON. I will also start doing this with selected other blog features, and each of those will have the store name (or an abbeviation) after 90/90 pertaining to the blog in which the offer appears. Only one offer to a customer please. Happy shopping, readers! You won't be disappointed!"

Monday, January 21, 2008

Silver Dragon

Welcome to Patricia C. Vener's Etsy shop, Silver Dragon . Patricia says she was born in the Year of the Dragon (actually just on the cusp depending how the Chinese New Year falls) and has always "adored the form and fantasy of dragons." She also thinks that silver is a wonderful metal; thereby, Silver Dragon.

This amazing bracelet is done in a new stitch that was invented by Patricia which she calls the Vener Chain and is an interlocking chain made on a single thread. It is the prototype for future projects using this stitch.

This interlocking reminds me of something from long ago. How did I get here from there? My goofy mind remembers trying to separate pretzels by eating the "spare parts," so that one chain interlocked the second without breaking the pretzel.

One of Patricia's earliest memories is a pre-school visit to a museum which was exhibiting Native American beadwork and textiles, and she can remember being completely enthralled by the sight, standing and staring at the pieces and absorbing them into her memory.

This lovely Hot Pink Fuzzy as she calls it, was created in many, many hours of work by weaving thousands of seed beads onto a base. It is an exquisite piece.

Patricia describes her path as an artist as "a duet of both fine and performing arts. I am a (retired) ballerina as well as a published artist, having done illustrations for a CD picture book, "Papa CArdinal Finds Breakfast" by Sandra Wellborn. One of my paintings accompanied and essay I wrote for an Astronomy textbook. (I also hold a Masters Degree in Astrophysics from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy NY and have worked as an astronomer and still teach astronomy as an adjunct professor for University of Maryland University College.)"

I absolutely marvel when one's life has room for so many diverse activities.

This beautiful lavender necklace called "Drama Queen" is just another example of copious quantities of teeny, tiny beads coupled with an equal amount of patience.

Patricia is planning on offering her own gift coupons, in order for the recipient of a certificate to select her own jewelry from Silver Dragon. She also loves doing custom work where she and her client can arrive a unique product of which both can be proud.

Be sure and visit Patricia's shop and blog at:

Patricia is a member of Etsy Street Teams, AJC (ArtJewelryCollective), NEST, New England Street Team, EtsyBeadweavers, and CT Etsy Street Team.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Tiffany Teske

Tiffany Teske, award-winning photographer, is my featured Etsy shop today. She has been fascinated by photography since she got her first camera at age seven, and it became merely a hobby until she was enrolled at the University of Maine and, ultimately, made the decision to make photography her career. She continued with these studies until she had received a Bachelor of Arts Joint BA in Art and Photography (Magna cum Laude) in May of 2002. She has been making a living with her photography since the time of her decision in 1998.

The photograph at left was processed using something called emulsion lift. I will let Tiffany describe this in her own words. "To begin this unique photographic art I capture an image on slide film or digital file. The slide or a 4x6 print are then projected onto Polaroid pack film. The emulsion layer of the print is boiled off its substrate, leaving a jelly fish like layer that I hand manipulate onto either a porous surface, as in the beige, fiberous, handmade paper here, or a non-porous surface like metal, wood, or stone. The result is a one-of-a-kind emulsion lift of the original slide or digital image. The original image can be exposed and lifted an unlimited number of times but the resulting left will always be very different from the last. Each emulsion lift is approximately 4x6” in size and is hand signed (both on the image and the mat). This emulsion lift comes with a hand cut, acid free, museum quality archival mat, which has a 5x7” window and outer dimensions of 8x10.”

With Red Dahlias at left, the Polaroid Transfer process was used. Says Tiffany, "This unique photographic art begins with this I captured this image on slide film. The slide is then projected onto Polaroid pack film which is peeled prematurely. The “waste” side of the film pack, which contains processing chemicals, is then placed face down onto wet watercolour paper and brayed (rolled over with a print making brayer). The result is a one-of-a-kind hand-pulled photographic transfer of the original slide image. The original image can be transferred an unlimited number of times but the resulting transfer will always vary from the last. Each transfer is approximately 3 ½” by 4” in size and is hand signed (both on the image and the mat). This transfer comes with a hand cut, acid free, museum quality archival mat, which has outer dimensions of 8x10."

Tiffany also has a selection of bamboo pendants with one of her photographs which are lacquered to a shiny finish and come with a silver bail chain.

Ten percent of the total proceeds of her Etsy shop go to local Victory Thrift Shop's Operation Jacket Frost, a snowsuit and winter clothing fund for needy children in Banff, Canada, where Tiffany now lives with her husband and daughter.

To view more of Tiffany Teske's work go to:

Friday, January 18, 2008

Fashion Divas Series

At the end of the year, my new inspiration for a series has been the Fashion Diva collection. It started with making cards, and rapidly spread into paintings. There are now three. Claudette had taken up residence on my blog for a week or so, but yesterday I received word that she had been sold at the Artists' Guild Gallery on Anna Maria Island, on Florida's West Coast, so I will have to replace her with Babette or Marcee. In the meantime I AM dancing the happy dance.

Studio Marcy

I've decided that there would be two things would be wrong with going about my usual method here with StudioMarcy . First of all, here, things are teeny tiny; and teeny tiny things blown up big, bigger, biggest sometimes lose their cuteness the bigger they get. Just like with my artwork, small paintings CAN be blown up big, but to me they just don't look right. So I'm gonna keep the pictures small. Secondly, Marcy's stories are just too cute not to use them.
"Meet Anna Belle the Mermaid. She is from the South Seas, and that's why she has a double name. She also speaks with a Southern underwater accent. Which is okay, but because she tends to draw out her words a little bit more, she also tends to swallow a bit too much water at times. Anna Belle is a voluptuous siren, but rather petite."

Marcy Lamberson has been creating lampwork beads for seven years. She thinks of them as a cross between pottery and watercolors. She has worked in watercolors, and loves the transparency associated with layering colors, and says that glass has similar properties. One cannot visit her shop without picking up the "happy" vibes that live here. Marcy says, " I love happy things and my goal is to make my customers smile or grin when ready the descriptions and enjoying my art."

All of these cute little ones are dainty mini-charms which include a sterling silver loop all ready to attach to your favorite bracelet or whatever.

Marcy uses a 2000 degree torch to work with glass which mostly comes from Murano, Italy. She says, "Every piece is kiln annealed for durability." She teaches both private and group lessons in her sunroom, where little squirrels and birds in the outside world sometimes find their little images melted into beads with clothes on.

(Darn, why oh why did we not take the day trip to Murano, when we were in Venice? After coming back I'm seeing things I'd never seen before made from Murano glass.)

Marcy's been baking again! Doesn't this look good enough to. . . Aw crunch, there goes the dental work! Seriously, here's another cute story. "I have been busy baking again. This time it's a vanilla white cupcake with yummy blue berry frosting with fun pink, blue, green and purple sprinkles. It can be used as a large charm, a pendant or a decoration. I will wire it for you with a Sterling silver loop and split ring, so all you'll need to do is add a chain/necklace or maybe attach it to a bracelet as a charm. It's a little over a half inch tall.Thanks for visiting my bake shop. I know these would make great birthday presents, artistic mini ornaments, or just a cute little way to say that you're happy with the world right now"

Pay Studio Marcy a visit at these locations:
Check her my bio on ( )

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Elements By Dawn

Dawn Brandt, the owner of Elements By Dawn, begins her Etsy profile with the definition of element; thereby describing how she arrived at her shop name. An element "refers to the shape, form, mass, line, texture, pattern, light, and color of a design."

I guess I'm pretty much adjective-challenged when describing jewelry. "It's beautiful, I like it, and I want it," are the terms I use most frequently. This beautiful pair of earrings was my favorite item in her shop, but I will defer to a portion of Dawn's description about the chainmaille earrings on the right.

"These earrings were created by weaving over 130 handmade links into a graceful European Chain Maille pattern, with a focal center section of Silver and surrounded by Gold. The earrings are suspended from hand-formed Argentium™ Sterling Silver ear wires and have been meticulously filed smooth for comfort. *Argentium™ Sterling Silver is a modern sterling silver alloy which modifies the traditional sterling silver alloy (92.5% silver + 7.5% copper) by replacing some of the copper with a rare metallic element called germanium. This new alloy is highly tarnish resistant and mar resistant."

Dawn recently graduated Magna Cum Laude with a Bachelor's in Business Administration. (Congrats!) From leafing through her blog, I found her to be smart, savvy and willing to share about a number of topics including July 11, 2007's article called Tips I Learned At The Show. Interesting reading! She's also learning which shows are good to participate in and which are not so good for her product. Dawn grew up in Florida, and she now resides in Kenosha, Wisconsin. She's married and has two sons.

Sea of Serenity (fine silver necklace above)

Dawn's profile has a great deal of information regarding her art. "Dawn is particularly drawn to creating pattern and texture in her pieces. Through pattern and texture, her designs take on movement, visual and tactile interest. Through the use of color and form, she communicates emotion and energy. Dawn's pieces range from simplistic shapes and lines, evoking a sense of calm; to heavily textured with bold colors and lines, suggesting passion. Her obsession with circles, spheres, disks, and symmetry is expressed throughout her designs."

You can appreciate from the photos here what variety you will find in Dawn's jewelry. She states that she is always learning new methods and perfecting the old.

Be sure to visit Dawn's shop and blog at the links below:

Wednesday, January 16, 2008


Today we are visiting Eva of Alilsumptinsumptin. She says that the name for her shop came as "a result of a humerous exchange between friends" (in other words, I guess, you had to be there). Too bad! Sounds like it coulda mighta made a good story.

I selected this beautiful bracelet to feature. I'll let Eva describe it herself, "The focal of this bracelet is a gorgeous heart bead torched by favorite Lampwork Artist, Janet Crosby. The bead is a turquoise blue decorated with cream swirls and dots. This special bead has been etched for a matte finish that is velvety soft to the touch.I embellished Janet's lovely heart with a double strand of top quality Grade A Blue Chinese Turquoise wheels and an assortment of all sterling silver components. It is signed with one of my sterling silver tags wire wrapped to the bracelet with a tiny Swarovski crystal. "

Two of Eva's passions in life are flower gardens and dogs. She's a pretty good photographer too. One segment of her blog showed photos of hummingbirds, which are not the easiest little birds to capture. Eva's also trained as a fashion designer, which I would imagine gives her a leg up when designing and selecting jewelry that she knows will look wonderful and have impact. The PAWS section of her shop features 100% of the proceeds being donated to the worthy cause named in the individual listing. The current pieces benefit The Humane Society of the United States and to Ferrets Unlimited.
"This Y style necklace features a lovely heart bead by favorite Lampwork Glass Artist, Janet Crosby. The heart is made of opaque black glass with white paw prints and is etched for a matte finish and a soft velvety feel.

White etched Lampwork beads by Sarah Friskey were added and enhanced with a modified herringbone weave. Other embellishments include Hill Tribe silver beads and Swarovski Crystals." Description by Eva.

Check out Alilsumptinsumptin at:

Tuesday, January 15, 2008


Today's Etsy featured shop is SparklyStrandz.

When asking how SparklyStrandz was named, Jamie responded, "One of my most favorite movies when I was little was an old animated movie called The Secret of Nimh. The funny bird called the "ruby-thingy" that everyone wanted, we called, "The Sparkly", and growing up my sister and I would call anything that we liked a "sparkly". When I started my business, I put "sparkly" together with "strandz" (b/c beads come on strands usually) and there it was!! (I just had to put the Z to be different). "

Babies are fascinated with their mom's hair, their earrings, their glasses, anything that is within reach. So Sparkly Strandz has come up with the "nursing necklace." It's an OK thing for baby to grab onto. Jamie says, "The pendant is made into a loop style that baby can grasp, and tied in a continuous piece of organza ribbon to prevent the beads from being able to fall off. These necklaces are not meant to be a replacement for a teether toy. Even though babies are small, they can bite down rather hard and accidents can happen, so please supervise when wearing."

Jamie earned her master's degree in Occupational Therapy, and she has sometimes been able to incorporate crafts and beads into therapy with her patients. She is mother to two small children (13 months, and 2 1/2). She is enjoying staying at home with them while they are young. This gives her some time to continue with her jewelry business that she loves.

Does this look like something a little cupid would be wearing for Valentine's Day? "This is a darling handmade crochet onesie that will fit 0-3 month size (depending on if you have an itty-bitty or a chub cub). It is meant to be worn over a plain little cotton onesie as a "dress-up" diaper cover. It has a back flap that buttons for diaper access-you just slip it on over baby's head like a regular onesie. This looks so beautiful in pictures, and is a wonderful keepsake item that can be passed along," says Jamie.

Be sure and visit Jamie at SparklyStrandz here at the links below:

Monday, January 14, 2008


Yaslani is the focus of today's 90-day Challenge feature. The shop owner, Yasmin says, "My shop name is a combination of my name and my daughter's...I'm Yasmin, she's Leilani hence - Yaslani!" Yasmin is a very focused mixed-media artist who has confined her Etsy product line to two art forms: mixed-media collage and bamboo pendants. The marketers would tell you to do this, and from sales numbers, it appears it has been very effective for her.

This Etsy shop is loaded with pendants, pages and pages of pendants with different themes. These are made of bamboo tiles and have a single image applied to each and coated with layers of non-yellowing varnish. There are single pendants, duo pendants, trio pendants and sets with many pendants. I like this one that looks like seed packets and makes me think of Spring and starting a garden. There are many, many images to choose from, and you can, "Wear several together for a layered style or hang individually from a leather cord or ribbon for a unique necklace. Also very cute on a charm bracelet, cell phone or keychain," says Yasmin.

But now, about the collages . . .Yasmin created these wonderful mixed-media collages using 4 x 6 gallery wrap canvases (means you don't have to frame them, just hang if you want to) with layers and layers of paint and paper and these little wooden animal guys. There's a series of these, and they can be grouped together and really make a statement.

It seems there was a time when Yasmin wasn't pursuing her dream full-time, and then all of a sudden she burst out with all sorts of creativity. To let her tell the story though, "I spent many a day and night daydreaming about doing art and selling my work...maybe just making a little money but mostly gaining much needed self esteem. I dreamed and came up with a thousand and one reasons why I couldn't, shouldn't, can't and probably wouldn't. Ten years later I was still a single mom (now of a teenager), still at the same job (and got used to the idea...even comfortable) and still dreaming. But this time it was different...

I got tired of seeing everything change around me and not doing what I really really really wanted to do. You see the truth is, the only person that told me I couldn't was me! I thought I was on my side!! I was tired of listening to myself whine about how I wanted something different and I was tired of my own excuses. Today's message is for any artist with flabby creative Nike says...Just do it. Looking back and knowing now how much I was able to achieve in one year, I feel silly that I wasted so much time."

Isn't that a fabulous and insightful story! Living it, was undoubtably a hard, learned lesson, but if we could only read about life lessons like this one and learn from them, it would surely save some bumps and bruises along the way.

Check out the fresh ideas in Yaslani's shop and blog too.

Announcing Program For Donations to Fisher House Foundation

I have made the decision, after doing the feature yesterday on Etsy shop, thatsHeadley; that I would also like to support the Fisher House™ Foundation by electing to give a percentage of my sales from my paintings with a patriotic theme from my Etsy shop at DreamON. I have two members of my immediate family who have served in the military, my husband and my daughter. I am thankful they made the commitment to freedom for the rest of us who are privileged to live in the United States, and I am also thankful that they made it back safe and sound.

However the commitment our country has made to maintaining our freedom comes at a huge cost, and many of our military families haven't been so blessed. So I am pleased to make this offering in the hopes that some will be able to be together with their loved ones when they are so desperately needed.

By donating to the Fisher House™ Foundation we help the program recognize the special sacrifices of our men and women in uniform and the hardships of military service by meeting a humanitarian need beyond that normally provided by the Departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs. Because members of the military and their families are stationed worldwide and must often travel great distances for specialized medical care, Fisher House™ Foundation donates "comfort homes," built on the grounds of major military and VA medical centers. These homes enable family members to be close to a loved one at the most stressful times - during the hospitalization for an unexpected illness, disease, or injury.

There is at least one Fisher House™ at every major military medical center to assist families in need and to ensure that they are provided with the comforts of home in a supportive environment. Annually, the Fisher House™ program serves more than 10,000 families, and have made available nearly 2.5 million days of lodging to family members since the program originated in 1990. By law, there is no charge for any family to stay at a Fisher House operated by the Department of Veterans Affairs; and Fisher House Foundation uses donations to reimburse the individual Fisher Houses operated by the Army, Navy, and Air Force. No family pays to stay at any Fisher House!

On behalf of DreamON and DreamsAboutArt I am pleased to make this announcement, but wish to acknowledge that the decision to offer a percentage of sales on certain items is a personal one, and that the Fisher House™ Foundation does not endorse any of my services or products. I am not a spokesman of any kind for the Fisher House™ Foundation . If you would like more information, please contact Jim Weiskopf at 888 294 8560 or go to

Sunday, January 13, 2008

that's Headley!

One of the most important concerns when you are buying online is in regards to quality. So when the shop owner addresses this concern it gives you peace regarding the purchase. Ginny Headley Maserang, owner of Etsy Shop, thats Headley, states, "I am absolutely committed to crafting jewelry pieces of the highest quality and beauty that will bring you great pleasure when you wear them."

I have recently discovered there are some quite interesting stories behind the choice of Etsy shop names, and this is definitely the case for thats Headley. Ginny gives us the background.
"It's a bit of silliness left over from high school. You see, the movie "Blazing Saddles" came out during that time, and the character played by Harvey Korman was named "Hedley Lamar". A running gag in the movie was that people kept calling him "Heddy" Lamar - which ticked him off (Heddy Lamar being a woman) and caused him to state emphatically "That's 'Hedley'!". My friends in high school thought this quite funny, and their greeting for me quickly became "that's Headley!" When I was thinking about a name for my shop, I thought it would be great if some day my work was so recognizable that someone might exclaim when they saw a piece of my work "that's Headley!" It seemed very fitting for branding, and it has the added beneift of reminding me of all my great friends from my youth. "

These pretty green pearl and wrapped sterling silver wire earrings are not just pretty on the outside, but they have the added benefit of benefitting the Fisher House™ Foundation. A portion of the sale of each item in thats Headley's "Hope for Whirled Peas" collection goes to benefit this very worthwhile organization. They are providing support to our military men and women by building "comfort homes" on the grounds of major military and VA medical centers. These homes enable family members to be close to a loved one at the most stressful times - during the hospitalization for an unexpected illness, disease, or injury. No family pays to stay at any Fisher House!

Thats Headley is a member of the following Etsy Street Teams:
Self Representing Artist Jewelry Designer (SRAJD) #231
Member Art Jewelry Collective
Member Etsy Texas Crafters (ETC)

Be sure to visit Ginny's shop and blog at:

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Adornments By BJ

Today's featured Etsy shop is Adornments by BJ's. BJ says, "The name of my shop just came to me since jewelry, as well as other items, are adornments to make a woman feel good, jazz up her wardrobe or simply to show their individuality."

BJ has a lovely family of whom she is very proud. Being the grandmother of 3 granddaughters and 3 grandsons; three daughters and a wonderful husband keeps her quite busy. In addition she just purchased a grand piano, which she has dreamed of getting for quite some time now. It was time to make some of her dreams come true, but she admits that enjoying it thoroughly, steals some of her Etsy time.

She says about her jewelry, "Jewelry Sets are my specialty; all quality made with the finest of materials to fit any budget, style, or special occasion whether it be casual or formal or somewhere in-between. Adornments to reflect your persona. It’s interesting to discover the metaphysical attributes of different stones and how they interact with our mood, physical being and personality."

The necklace pictured above "has it all," says BJ, "The design is sophisticated and yet glitters from the many Swarovski crystals. It is extremely versatile and would complement many of your wardrobe outfits. The colors will lend itself well to all seasons and unlimited possibilities.The necklace measures 19 1/2", including clasp. The earrings have three Swarovski crystal bicones, same colors as are in the necklace, and drop from gold-filled french earwires."

BJ is a member of the following groups: S.R.A.J.D. (Self-Representing Artist Jewelry Designer #0517), AJC (Art Jewelry Collective) and JET (Jewelry on Etsy Team). Photos of my jewelry are listed on,,,, and many other sites as well.
Visit BJ at the following locations:

My Workspace

My Workspace
On The Pier At St. Simons Island

New Art, New Techniques, Hints, Thoughts, Photos and More

Stay tuned! For purchase information about any of the artwork, check out my Etsy store -- DreamON or send me email (conversation) by pressing the contact button at