Sunday, November 30, 2008

I'm an Elf!!

Send your own ElfYourself eCards

Saturday, November 29, 2008

It Went Well!

I’m really not one to toot my own horn very often, but we did the best we ever did at a craft show today. Mind you we’ve only done a handful of shows. So I’m all giddy.

The attendance at the Irondequoit High School was fantastic. As I drove around town this week I kept seeing signs they put up to advertise the show. It was in several papers, too. The promoters do a really good job of promoting. It helps that this show has been going on for 30+ years.

Our spot was by the front doors as I expected. Turns out that’s a great place to be set up. Everyone had to walk by our table to get to the rest of the show. I hope we can get the same spot for next year.

We sold half of the domino Christmas ornaments, half of the glass tile magnets, and half of the Scrabble tile pendants. My mother had to run home and get supplies so I could make more ribbon necklaces to go with the Scrabble tile pendants.

I’m really looking forward to the Buffalo Indie Market show on December 14th. I have inventory to stock up on so I better get busy. I’m meeting with a local shop for a consignment deal tomorrow. I might have more to catch up on than I think right now.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Your Weekend Plans Include Me!

Looking for something to do this Saturday, November 29th? Join me at the Irondequoit High School Arts & Crafts Show from 10 am to 4 pm! The school is located at 260 Cooper Road in West Irondequoit, NY, just north of Rochester.

Our booth will be set up in the common area, which I am told is by the front doors to the school. This is a very well attended show and has been going on for many years. It’s a fundraiser for the Irondequoit High School baseball team. I know a few other crafters who will be at the show so I can assure you of high quality items at good prices.

Come on down and support your local economy and local artists!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving ATC

I hope each and every one of you has a safe, healthy, and happy Thanksgiving!!

As for me, I will be at my mom’s place eating things with lots of butter in them.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Etsy Artist Feature: Beadwork by Amanda Preske

I met a marvelous artist at the Community Nursery School of Irondequoit Craft Show today by the name of Amanda Preske. She makes the most striking, intricate beaded jewelry.

In addition to being an avid jeweler, she is a chemistry student at Rochester Institute of Technology. Her work reminds me of complex molecular structures, almost like she is weaving atoms together. I find it interesting how artists’ lives play out in their work and always enjoy when the two marry so well, as in Amanda’s instance. This piece especially makes me think of long, crystalline chains of atoms.

Her work has been awarded a silver key in a scholastic art competition in the jewelry division. She is a member of the Etsy BeadWeavers Team.

A free pair of earrings accompanies every purchase from her Etsy shop. How nice! Specify what colors you want when you check out. If you find something in her shop you like but want a different color, just ask. She’s open to custom orders.

Amanda offers jewelry parties in your home with some really great deals. Hostesses receive 20% off purchases at the party and an additional 5% off for every $100 in sales. Everyone who attends receives a free gift. I’m sure you and your friends will enjoy her work. More information is available here.

Her website has a page of some of her creations that are not yet offered in her shop but are incredibly nice. They are worth a look-see!

Visit her site for a 20% off coupon good at a craft show or mention this offer in a message if you purchase an item from Etsy.

Amanda, I wish you much joy and success in all your endeavors! I’m looking forward to seeing you again at the craft show at Irondequoit High School on November 29th!

Images used with permission from the artist, Amanda Preske.

Craft Show Today!!

My Etsy shop is closed down because I’m bringing my entire inventory to the Community Nursery School of Irondequoit’s Craft & Bake Sale fundraiser.

Date: Sunday, November 23rd – TODAY!!

Time: 12 noon to 5 pm

Location: Irondequoit United Church of Christ, 644 Titus Ave, West Irondequoit 14617

Details: “Please come join us from 12pm to 5pm at the United Church of Christ on Titus Ave in West Irondequoit for the CNSI Craft and Bake Sale to support our preschool.

We have vendors and crafters showing and selling for all your gift giving needs. Please come sample some tasty treats from our bake sale as you shop.

We are also having Door Prizes for you to win! All proceeds go to funding the preschool for this year.

Plenty of parking! **FREE admission!**”

So you can see why I’m excited! My sister helped organize this event and I’m proud to have been invited to participate. Now I just have to control myself around all those baked goodies all day!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

My Photo Studio

Right now my photo studio for my art is my dining room table. Not a great place for this but it was the only clean table I had at the time. (Note to self: clean the studio.) This is what it looks like when I’m taking pictures of domino ornaments.

Photographing Ornaments

The lights are two shop lamps with regular household light bulbs. My hunny made the wood bases for me to clamp my lights on. What you cannot see is my camera and tripod set up as I was using it to take this photo. I assure you, I do use a tripod.

In order to get the best color I recommend using the custom white balance setting on your camera if you have one. Hold up a piece of white paper in front of your camera in your studio lighting and set the custom white balance. This tells your camera what is “white” in this particular lighting. I had to do very little lighting or color corrections to my photos thanks to this trick. Editing these pictures took no time at all as I just had to crop and resize them for the web.

I’m giving away all my secrets here, people. Take notes.

I would prefer to take my pictures with natural sunlight, but here in Rochester I’ll be waiting forever for the sun to cooperate. The nice thing about my set up is that it is portable… for when I get a spot in my studio to take pictures. Plus it’s not hard to break down when we want to have dinner in our dining room.

Domino Ornament Collage

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Shuffle Off to Buffalo…

… for the Buffalo Indie Market on Sunday, December 14th from 12 pm to 5 pm!! I’ll be there at the Pearl Street Grill and Brewery with my wares!

I’ve already blogged about how great the Buffalo Indie Market is at promoting indie craftsters like me. The show has been gaining popularity in its short run as a monthly handmade arts and crafts show. The organizer, Mary Stephens McGinnis, seems to work tirelessly at promoting and offering the artists in her area a chance to advertise and be part of something big! So that’s why I’m going to drive 1.5 hours to celebrate the holidays with the Buffalo Indie Market. Won’t you join me? Included in this fun day are live music performances and artist workshops and demos!

You may not know this but here at In My Head Studios, I make much more than just collage pendants, domino ornaments, and greeting cards. At this show I will have felted bags, bowls, necklaces, bracelets, and pins, a few pieces of fine art and collage, some ACEOs, and handmade glass tile magnets. There may be few more surprises as well!

1. Heart and Family Altered Domino Christmas Tree Ornament - Live Laugh Love, 2. Dove Altered Domino Ornament, 3. Fly Away Home Pendant :: Front, 4. Queen of Hats ATC, 5. Blue Sparkly Felt Bead Necklace, 6. "Coffee Lover" Double Sided Art Collage Pendant :: Front, 7. Bird's Nest : Felted ATC, 8. Weaved Felted Bead Necklace :: Close Up, 9. Pink Sherbet & Classic Beige Felted Wristlet Bags

If you can’t make this show then I will also be at the Irondequoit High School on Saturday, November 29th from 10 am to 4 pm.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

New Product Launch – Altered Domino Christmas Ornaments

I’m so excited to be rolling out a new product line today! Aren’t you excited, too?! I can feel that you are!

Heart and Family Altered Domino Christmas Tree Ornament - Live Laugh Love

Fancy Tree Altered Domino Christmas Tree Ornament

Ta Da! Altered domino Christmas tree ornaments!

Several years ago I mentioned to my eternally-garage-sale-going grandmother that I needed some dominos to make art with. She promptly found about 700. What to do? Make lots of things with dominos.

Some of them are very very old. The wood ones are all vintage antiques. The bigger dominos are the plastic kind.

I’ve really enjoyed making these. I was hoping my canvas would be expanding from 1” x 1” to something bigger. But these are still about the same size only a slightly different orientation. For some reason I gravitate towards making things that are really small with tiny bits of paper. My eyesight isn’t going to tolerate this much longer!

I have about 20 of these made so keep watching my shop for new additions!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Remembrance ATC

Remembrance ATC

The MAMMA flickr group theme last week was “remembrance”. Preparations for my craft show took precedence, and I did not get my entry done in time for the swap. But I thought the theme was worth spending some time on.

My mom has all these great photo albums of my relatives, lots of neat antique photos. Looking through them reminds me of where I’ve come from. Both my maternal great grandparents came off the boat from Sicily. I hope someday to visit the place of my ancestors.

This photo of my mom’s parents reminds me of how much they loved each other. They were together for 64 years when my grandfather passed a few years ago. I miss both of them greatly. I like to do things to honor their memories. I made a big shadowbox collage about my maternal grandmother I’ll show you someday.

The background was made a few months ago with gel medium and acrylic paint. Then I stitched the border on my sewing machine in brown thread. The lace was a gift from my grandmother. I have a box of old buttons I like to draw from for my ATCs. The metallic element that says “parents” came from my hunt at the Dollar Store for collage items. Nice score, I think.

I’m not sure when this photo of my Grandma Ann and Grandpa Chris was taken. Maybe when he was on leave from Korea or just returning home or right before he left. Aren’t these two just beautiful?

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Craft Show News

Craft Show Table at Casa Larga

The Holiday Arts & Crafts Show went well for a Thursday show. I’m thinking it maybe just was not my crowd. I need to find shows that cater to a younger group. But the people were super friendly. The organization was great. The scenery was to die for. And the altered domino Christmas ornaments were a hit. (Pictures coming soon.)

Casa Large Winery is one of the highest points in Monroe County. The view was fabulous of the splendid fall colors.

I had met Stephanie Tadio of Pinetree Designs online a few weeks ago. So it was a blast getting to meet her in person. I love meeting “online” friends in the real world. She was so kind and friendly, and I hope we see more of each other. Her work is great! I love people who do things with tiny pieces of paper!

Very funny story for this show: It was my first with these organizers. I’ll admit I am short and look young for my age, very young, like teenager young. The organizer came over and told me how wonderful my table display and artwork was, and that folks had been telling her how impressed they were by the “very young woman” at my booth. I confessed to being 33 years old. I thought she was going to fall down. People thought that I was maybe 17, tops.

Was it my lack of make up, my Converse sneakers, or that both my parents were there and they don’t look their age either? I don’t know, but this keeps happening and it’s sort of freaking me out at this point. Should I ask my hairdresser sister to make my gray streak bigger? Should I make myself a pendant that says “33 year old” in it and wear that at shows? My mother used to get this all the time, too, as she never looked her age. At 40 she was accosted by my 7th grade vice-principal for having her sunglasses on in the school building, a no-no at the time. The vice-principal thought she was no more than an 8th grader!

The next show I’m doing is on Saturday, November 29th at the Irondequoit High School at 260 Cooper Road from 10 am to 4 pm. Hope to see you there!!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Double the Fun

I got a treasury on Etsy today. Please check out the cool collage artists! I love vintage photos. Do you need some new ancestors?

Need Some New Ancestors?
Click HERE to visit the treasury!

ginamstudio put my Fairy collage pendant in a Twitter treasury! I’m so honored! Thank you!!

twitter treasury
Click HERE to visit the treasury!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Holiday Arts & Crafts Show at Casa Larga Winery

Christmas Domino Ornaments
Altered Domino Christmas Ornaments

Yoo hoo to the local peeps in Rochester, New York! I’ll be at the Holiday Arts & Crafts Show at Casa Larga Winery on Thursday, November 6th from 10 am to 7 pm.

There will be wine tastings and a local food drive for the Perinton Food Shelf, Advent House and Pittsford Women’s Club. The Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra will also be there! That’s classy! There’s no admission fee, and there is a door prize of a $25 gas card!!

Won’t you join me? Get your holiday shopping started early!

2008 Election Results

Obama won! So did other people I voted for locally. I’m happy. I’m scared.

I’m not one for political blogging. But I’m afraid of where our country is headed, Obama or not. We have to get our acts together and take care of our children’s futures. We have to shore up health care for all who need it. We have to fix Social Security or it won’t be there when I “retire”. Something has to be done about the economy, but do not ask me what. That whole thing confuses me. Mr. M tries explaining the nitty gritties and my eyes glaze over. But it needs to be fixed somehow soon. People are going to starve. Small business like this one might cave. (Don’t worry. We are not going anywhere.) So many other things need fixing that my head just spins.

So to all who won an election race yesterday, God speed. And to those who lost, I hope you find solace that we are all in this together, and there is still more work to be done.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Finding Words in Books for Collage: A Tutorial

I like to use words in my collages, but was having trouble finding the ones I wanted. The only way to find them was to read, read, read until I found what I was looking for or gave up. Then I remembered Google book search.

You can search the contents of a book by the words you want. So now all I have to do is go to the site (, find a copy of the book I’m cutting words from, and type in what I’m trying to find. Easy peasy.

For example, I have a copy of Winter Wheat by Mildred Walker I’m using to chop up for collage words. I search for that book at When I find it, I type in the box on the right side of the page for what I am searching for. It gives me the page number and the sentence the word is in. Voila!

You may not find an exact copy of the book you have in your hands, so the page numbers may be a bit off in your copy. But at least you have a place to start.

This saved my sanity and might save yours as well. Not that I’m implying anything. ☺

Now go sacrifice a book to your muse!

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Queen of Bling ATC

Bling Queen

The MAMMA theme for the week: BLING! If you know me at all, you know I am not of bling. I am bland when it comes to girly things like jewelry and makeup. Makeup is something I maybe put on once or twice a year. Most of the jewelry I wear is something I made. The bling theme stumped me until I located a picture from the collage image group on flickr. I found this heavily adorned woman image that screamed “BLING ME!” I pulled out old costume jewelry and all the rhinestones I could find. She needed to be over-the-top! I kept going until there was nowhere left to add more bling. Glitter did not come into play, and I may have to do something about that post haste.

My decision to keep this one is selfish, I know. I really like her and want to hang her on my wall. If I had time I would make another for the swap but the list for partners will be posted soon. Plus I don’t have time this week to deal with a swap as I have my first craft show of the season on November 6th. So busy making things for the booth. More about the show soon!