Saturday, January 30, 2010

a carnival anniversary

it's carnival time!!!

my favorite time of year.
and today is mine and mr. b's 5th year anniversary of the night we met.
tonight is krewe du vieux - the only walking parade in the french quarter and pretty much the start of the parades for the mardi gras season.
of course, with the city in full on superbowl mode, mardi gras really did start early this year.
next week i will give you a sneak peak at my superbowl costume and if i totally destroy that one in the quarter next sunday, my backup mardi gras costume.
have a great weekend everyone!

amber

Thursday, January 28, 2010

a few new pendants


three new embroidered pendants i recently finished.
the outer two are available at the shop.
the middle one is mine. my friend, lidia gave me the red cab, so i decided to keep it for myself!
thanks, lidia!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

valentine and mardi gras tags and cards



here are a few new items for this week:



art nouveau post cards available at the ogden


valentine tags



queen of hearts tags



mardi gras collage card i made to send to a friend

mardi gras collage card i made to send to a friend

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

what a weekend!

WOW! what a weekend we have had here in NOLA!!

in case you've been living under a rock, the saints, after (finally) hitting a field goal against the vikings in overtime,  are the NFC champions and on their way to their first EVER superbowl!

the entire city went insane, starting pretty early sunday morning and continuing on into late yesterday.

mr. b and i were minding our own beeswax sunday - getting ready for the game and taking care of house hold duties - when all of a sudden, an impromptu saints second line starts marching down our street!  needless to say, we grabbed the camera and away we went. we did turn off the oven and lock the door, but that was about it.

they went all the way to the dome (we live uptown)  but we marched as far as washington with them before we had to turn around and go home to get ready for the game ourselves.

at some point on st. charles ave. i actually started to tear up at so much love for this city and for getting to be a part of something as amazing as that parade.

anyway...here are some highlights from the second line that i thought you might enjoy:


mr. b strikes a pose in his who dat gear as we walk down amelia toward magazine.


who dat fan feels the music!


the queen of the second line


who dat neighbors come out to show their support


a member of the youngest who dat nation


second line dancers on st. charles ave.


feeling the love for a great city and a great team!


so, i've been working on lots of new stuff and will have pics of new pendants, valentines, and mardi gras collage cards later this week!

WHO DAT,! y'all!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

an early sunday

it's pretty darn early to be up on a sunday morning, but i have a lot to do today.

first off, i have been asked to put my paper tags, post cards, and cards in the gift shop at the odgen museum of southern art. i have had my jewelry in there before, but it didn't sell, so we'll see how the paper products do. i have to have a pretty good bit of stuff ready to deliver on monday.




the second thing i have to do is watch the saints playoff game tonight.

 mr. b is taking a friend of ours - yes, i gave up my ticket so the guys can have some man time - and i am probably going to dos jefes to watch the game with some friends.

if the saints win and we go to the super bowl, this entire city is going to go crazy and i can tell you right now, i will be one hungover puppy tomorrow.

so i better get busy today!


ciao!

amber

Friday, January 22, 2010

realizations

it amazes me how, sometimes, even though you think you know yourself, you can be surprised by a realization or a decision you make.

i think i am pretty self aware - i know i can be selfish, self centered, totally oblivious to what is going on around me - mainly because i have encased myself in a little art bubble and that is where i like to live.

i know that i am hard on myself, i dwell too much on the past, and that i get my feelings hurt a little too easily.

i also know that i am a loner. and it has never really bothered me.

even though i know that this about myself, i was surprised to find this thought cross my mind this morning:

" boy, i wish i enjoyed going out more. i really am pretty square".



see, i love living in new orleans, but i don't take advantage of everything this beautiful city has to offer because mr. b and i are notorious home bodies. don't get me wrong, we can throw down with the best of them, and i can count the mardi gras parades i have missed on one hand, but truthfully, we are both happiest at home, reading, making art, and watching our shows and movies.

sometimes i wish i was more social. and by that i mean, that i liked going out to events - live music, theatre, etc. i wish i were "cooler", but to be honest, i just don't have the energy!

i would just rather hang out with mr. b and the kittehs, make art, eat sushi, and watch movies. i like my house. and i really like my studio. and i really really like making things in my studio.

does that make me uncool? square? boring?

probably.

but that's who i am and what i like.

damnit.









Tuesday, January 19, 2010

as promised - flags and new pendants

i was a busy little beaver yesterday.
 it has been FAR TOO LONG since i had a day off to just CREATE. it felt glorious. but, honestly, i got a little weirded out at one point because i felt like i was forgetting something - like working or doing laundry. but, yesterday was all mine and i did with it what i wanted to: to bead and take pictures.

as promised, here are some pics of the mardi gras centerpieces i have been working on:


i cut and coffee stained bristol board for the flag part. mod podged it to the dowel ( the design is on both sides). then i aged the edges with tim holtz antique photo distressed ink. the crown is hand stamped ( cavalini stamps) and then a little vintage german glass glitter is added to the points. i glued a 4mm rhinestone to the top of the dowell just for a little sparkle and tied the whole thing off with purple, green, and gold ribbon.


so far i have only made 11 of these - because i meant to make 12 and can't count, obviously.
 but i am planning on making more. they are just too much fun, and quite pretty, i think.


i originally envisioned 3 to a centerpiece, but they really look better if it's just 2 of them in a champagne glass or small vase.


after taking pics of the paper stuff, i finally got up the nerve to open my beading table.
this is what i found. boy, did i leave it in a mess way back in the fall!


but i also found this gorgeous pendant i started. the cab is actually vintage plastic. i know. i know. the color is so rich, but that's the truth. i sewed some citrine to the tops of the embroidery and am thinking it would look mahvelous strung on 2 beaded citrine chains.



and finally, here are 2 pendants i started yesterday. once i got going, i couldn't stop, and i am planning on beading most of the day today as well. i have been forbidden to come to work with my cold  for one more day, and i am going to use it to my advantage.

i had forgotten how much i enjoy making jewelry.

and having a day off!!!

Monday, January 18, 2010

contagiously crafting

bleecchhh.
 i feel like ass today.
i have my second cold this season - WHICH NEVER EVER EVER HAPPENS - and i just feel yucky.
but, i am going to use the fact that i am contagious as an excuse to be left alone and craft today.
heee heee heee.  smiles to self...



i have been working on some valentine tags and cards. i will have to make a trip to the outside world today ( if the place i want to go is open ) to get ribbon for these lovelies. but, that shouldn't be too hard as the fabric store i plan to hit has vintage ribbons and trims and such. i will pay out the wahzoo, but i bet i come home with some beautiful finds.

i did get  ribbon on friday to complete my mardi gras flag centerpieces. they came out great, if i do say so myself. i will take pics today and post tomorrow.

and.... i am giving some serious thought to tackling the bead table today. yeah, i know, brave words.
 but, i rummaged  through my cabochons over the weekend and i have some pretty cool stuff just waiting to be brought to life. so, i guess i better get to work...


happy martin luther king day, everyone!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

victory is saweeeet (aka my only sports post evah)

yesterday was the playoff game between the new orleans saints and the arizona cardinals. now, i lived in arizona for a few years, but my loyalties lie with the saints. mr. b's dad scored some sweet seats for us, i got the day off work, and away we went to the dome....

sorry cardinals fans. but not really.


everyone in this house is a saints fan, whether they like it or not...


brunch of champions


mr. b and me and some pretty sweet seats to the playoff game yesterday. we never miss a chance to dress up in the big easy


monsieur pitt on the sidelines pre game


we actually took this during the holidays, but it's the only good pic i have of my shockey shirt



mah boo shockey. did i mention how good our seats were? mr. b  finally took the camera away from me!

hope y'all enjoyed these. we had such a great time yesterday. and me with my second cold this season ( which has never happened  EVER in my life). but, i hung in there ( thanks to a lot of ibuprofen and bloody marys) and we just had a blast. of course, it didn't hurt that we spanked the cardinals like they were little girls....

WHO DAT!!!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

bead collage photos



i found these old photos on the computer today and thought i would share them. i thought that maybe if i posted them, they would make me want to bead.
i've only used a fraction of these cabs and stones, but now i am somehow feeling the urge to buy more... ah, the beginning of creativity - shopping!!!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

the wonder of it all


i had a huge post prepared for today, laying open all my secret wishes and fears.
instead, i think this will suffice.
i know i am taking it to heart.

Monday, January 11, 2010

we're just not used to this down here

ok, i know the rest of the country is blanketed under 80 million feet of snow and my dear friend, atilio reminded me that it was -9 in st. louis last week, but here in the big sleazy, we are just NOT used to temps in the 20's. we don't like it. we don't want it. we don't need it. and we live here to AVOID it. thank you very kindly.

so, with that said, let me i am effing COLD!!!!  also let me tell you that at casa de moi, we have no central heating or air. see, in new orleans, we like our houses old and drafty. that is, until it's cold. then we get mad.

the last week at our place has seen all 4 of us huddled around the one gas heater we have in the bedroom. the cats just perch on the mantel above it soaking up the 90+ degrees that thing gives off in that location. all the way on the other side of the room ( where yours truly gets her beauty rest) it's a balmy 50 degrees. if i'm lucky. i wonder if the mantel would hold me?

so, needless to say, every living thing at our house has gone butt ass crazy the last few days. we're cold. we're pissed, and much like my friend niki was with her dogs this weekend - she's in the same predicament we are - we are eyeballing each other as if we were tauntaun's on the planet hoth, trying to figure out who is the biggest and would keep us the warmest.

my studio is about 30 degrees and is sealed off from the bedroom by the classic college student curtain of old blankets. i am not going to share that picture with you.

but, here are some photos i took this weekend showing just how insane everyone has gone:


patches WAAAAY up high on the kitchen cabinets -- be careful, patches...


trying to keep warm in the highest part of the kitchen


yeah, you're allowed up there... sure.



running water is sooooo much more exciting that the still water in my bowl - WHICH IS ON THE FLOOR! WHERE YOU BELONG.

i finally just gave up last night and let them do whatever they wanted. no one listens to me anyway. : )

and just before cash jumped up on the kitchen island and mauled my newly coffee stained papers ( if anyone wants cash's autograph, i have a postcard with his tiny little paw print on it, ready to go!) i finished these which i thought i would share:


zombie paper doll for niki


vintage cowgirl and tattoo gift tags


ah, paris....


big bowl of tags and cards ( some mardi gras ones in there too, new orleans folks) at GoGo Jewelry on magazine street.

well, thanks for looking and listening to me rant about my furbabies. i also have a bracelet to alter, but it will have to wait until tomorrow.

i'm going to get warm!

amber

Sunday, January 10, 2010

new homes for old friends


this beauty found a new home on friday. i was so surprised. it's one of my favorite designs, but i have had it for over two years. i guess you just never know when a piece will pick it's new owner.

these have also recently gone to their new homes, and i could not be more delighted:







Thursday, January 7, 2010

clearing out and starting something new

hola everyone!

well, we are officially 7 days into 2010 and already the fella and i have started tackling the studio. surprise! surprise! the dreaded catch all of the holiday season. it's in the back of the house, so everything just sort of ends up there...sigh. there is also no heat in that room, so brrrr....

but, we got on it sunday night after i came in from michael's -- (god i hate that place, but it's the only game in town) -- and the art supply store - where i bought atc cards and water soluble oil pastels! yay! we cleared out enough space for me to work at the table - oh, and actually be able to GET to the table. very important.  so, now i have a little area for my paper crafts cleared off and somewhat organized.


 i haven't even touched the beading table. to be honest, i'm a little afraid of it. it's an antique writing desk with a top that closes - so the kittehs won't wreak havoc - and i am afraid of what kind o' mess i left in there in october. hmmm...i guess eventually i'll have to look, but not right now.


to be honest, i am just not feeling the love for the beads right now. i know i need to work - december was a very good month for me at the shop and i am sold out of earrings and embroidery pendants ( except for the 1985 series. i have plenty of those. not sparkly enough for the holiday shoppers, i suppose). so, i need to get to work, but i am just not there yet and i refuse to force it.


i did, however, start a new journal and make my first two paper collage pieces last night. it's funny, how you have ideas in your head - which don't seem all that ambitious until you actually sit down to work on them. usually it's then that i realize that i have NO IDEA what i'm doing and only a vague idea of how to go about acheiving the look i want. (i also realized i don't have nearly enough stamps or ink pads, but that's another story all together). i know NOTHING about making collages. not one thing. but, i bought a bunch of paper, bought a bunch of stamps, dragged out my colored pencils, and waah la! collage. sort of.


i'll admit that i have a long way to go to acheive the look i want with my paper crafts. and since i am obsessed with two TOTALLY different styles, that just makes it harder to focus. again, i have all these ideas but i get sooooooooooooo overwhelmed when i actually sit down to work, that i totally freeze up. totally. but, you gotta start some where...so here it is:



i have to remind myself constantly, however, that i do have my own style and it will take time to bring it out in this new craft. i have found myself, over the last few days, trying to emulate other styles that i have seen and liked, and it just turns out blah. blah. blah. know why? 'cause that ain't me. i've never been a copier. why start now? i know i will find my voice. i just have to be patient.


my main goal is to explore the ideas i have and just to experiment and freely create. i know that sounds easy, but for me, it doesn't come so easy sometimes. i can be really really really hard on myself when i am learning something new.
see, i think i ought to be FREAKING FANTASTIC at pretty much EVERY CRAFT ever invented the FIRST TIME OUT. yeah, annoying for those around me to say the least. i get so depressed when things don't turn out the way i planned. ( you should have been at my house the day i made my first embroidered pendant. that was a lovley day). oh, and don't even get me started on beaded beads. i finally decided i was not put on this planet to make those little buggers. after about a month of trying, i admit it - i gave up. i will admire the work of others in that field, thank you very much.

i am not sure how i became so obsessed with stamping and collage ( i think it was a marie antoinette shadow box i couldn't afford), but i am glad i have taken the plunge. much like bead embroidery, i find it very freeing. i can sit back in my little corner of the world, moving the pieces of a puzzle around until i find the look that fits. that satisfies me in a weird way, i suppose. my own way of just playing.


i know i have a long way to go - my style won't develope over night. nor will my skills. like everything else in life, a new hobby takes practice as well. and very possibly admitting to yourself that your style is very clean and concise and doesn't really do fru fru very well. i like fru fru. i'm just not good at it. yet.