Friday, June 29, 2012

Robert Hugh Hunt

Note from Mel:  This marks the fifth in a series of 10 posts about various artists who work with ephemera.  I put out the call last Friday and I got some wonderful responses!   


Wow!  We're at the mid-point for our Ephemera Artists series!  I hope you're all enjoying it so far - isn't it fascinating to see how these artists interpret the ephemera in our lives?


"Mr. a" by Robert Hugh Hunt
Continuing on this journey, we have Robert Hugh Hunt as our artist for this Friday.  Robert is a collagist/painter living in Kentucky.  He studied painting in collage but now mainly focuses on collage and drawing.  With his mixed media pieces, he says he "strives to create a sense of nostalgia".


Mission accomplished!  That's exactly what I see when I see his works.  What I noticed when viewing his large collection of collages is that, to me anyway, Robert lets the ephemera speak to him, and he then works with it.  I love that his work is a very coherent collection, but that each separate piece is its own entity.


Robert began creating collages the same way I did - mail art.  This is what he has to say about it:
"I started making collage in the eighties. There was a huge mail art movement. I have always had a yard sale/ thrift store mentality though, I collected ephemera, even before I started using it in art. Things would just catch my eye."
I can most certainly relate to that!  :D

"The Restaurant 2008" by Robert Hugh Hunt - made with shopping lists!

I first became aware of Robert's work via one of my favorite books,  Masters: Collage , curated by Randel Plowman (if you own the book, Robert's work begins on page 56).  When I first got the book a couple of years ago, I remember poring over his pieces to see how he connects things.  His work inspired me to get out of my comfort zone and to look at color and texture, rather than what that piece of ephemera used  to be.  I also take this quote to heart: 
"Originality doesn't mean making something that's completely new; nothing is completely new.  Originality means breaking and bending and shaping what's come before until it belongs to you."
I always come back to that quote when I'm critical of my own work.  Thanks for the inspiration, Robert.


Enjoy your weekend, everyone!  I'll be back with the second half of our series on Monday!  :D











Thursday, June 28, 2012

Jane Lee Horton

Note from Mel:  This marks the fourth in a series of 10 posts about various artists who work with ephemera.  I put out the call last Friday and I got some wonderful responses!  


I can't believe we're almost halfway through our "Ephemeraology Artists" series already!  I hope you're enjoying it as much as I am - I just love viewing others' work!  


Today's artist, of course, is no exception!  Jane Lee Horton is another UK artist who answered my call to be a part of this series in the "Notpaper" group on Facebook.  In fact, she was the very first to answer!  It was so exciting to see her e-mail in my inbox!
"Runaway Thoughts" by Jane Lee Horton
I was even more thrilled when I perused her Web site - her work is just wonderful!  I like how she calls herself a "multimedia" artist instead of "mixed media", like most of us do.  She incorporates collage sparingly in her work - here, allow me to let Jane explain why:


"I’ve been a collage artist since I was a kid, my mum used to give me her old clothing catalogues to cut up and play around with to keep me quiet.  I got into using ephemera way back when there seemed to be more of it around, as it wasn’t as popular as an art material as it seems to be now.  I used to come across it at jumble sales (what those in the US call yard sales) and junk shops.  Now you can get it on ebay!

 I like to use it sparingly, to make a statement, too much in one work can look overdone.I particularly like old documents, especially the ones with rubber stamps on, usually official documents like old deeds etc. old bank notes and of course old photos are always wonderful!"
(From now on, I'm going to call rummage sales, "jumble sales"!  I LOVE that!)

As you can see in her work, Jane is also a textiles artist.  I love how she stitched part of her "Runaway Thoughts" piece - I'm a big fan of combining sewing elements with collage, and the cleanly stitched lines around the old letters and the mustachioed gentleman accent the piece so beautifully.

"Waves" by Jane Lee Horton
The other piece I've chosen for the blog post (but you can see them all for yourself on Jane's Web site!) is called "Waves", and it just spoke to me.  Talk about using ephemera sparingly - each piece is a statement!  The Napoleonic gentleman made of maps; the birds; Big Ben; the ships, wave and tiny letter fragments; they all combine for a beautiful piece amidst a painted background.  So lovely.

I'm so glad that Jane answered the call to be on the blog - serendipity strikes again!







Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Kristi Fredrick

Note from Mel:  This marks the third in a series of 10 posts about various artists who work with ephemera.  I put out the call last Friday and I got some wonderful responses!  


Welcome to the third installment of our "Ephemera Artists" series!  Up next is Kristi Fredrick, who is a collage artist living in Waupun, Wisconsin (about 45 miles northeast of Madison).


I know Kristi - we "met" about two years ago via Facebook but actually met in person last year during an exhibit at our library.  Kristi feels about collage the way I did (and still do!) when I started - she's utterly addicted to it.  She makes sure to carve out time for it and it brings her much joy to create.


But enough of my relationship to Kristi - let's hear about her Ephemeraology experience in her own words:


Repurposed cutting board using milking supply ads from
a 1930s Montgomery Ward catalog - BRILLIANT!
(Copyright Kristi Fredrick)
"I first discovered collage in grade school. I think that started a lifelong obsession. As a young adult I discovered decoupage and that became my hobby. Eventually I found a book about mixed media collage (or altered art). I was fascinated by this new art form and once I tried it, I was hooked! 

So, why do I love ephemera?  I think it might be one of those strange addictions like those people who like to eat dirt or paint chips, only it's a much healthier addiction!  As far as the more modern ephemera goes (I especially like pictures from national Geographic magazine or Birds and Blooms), it's usually the beauty of an image that speaks to me. Maybe it's a colorful flower or some interesting architecture or a human face. I see the image and I try to imagine how it could contribute to a piece of art.

Collaged picture frame using old sheet music and
vintage magazine ads
When it comes to antique ephemera, I think my love for vintage stuff has become an obsession! Ever since a friend gave me a 1917 newspaper that became part of my first decoupage projects, I just cant get enough! Sometimes I like the look of the design and the lettering or the logo in and old ad, or maybe it's the clothing and hairstyle of a bygone era in an old photograph. In particular I have fallen in love with early 1900s postcards!  The beautiful artwork on the front, the handwritten messages on the back...love, love, love!

The cool thing about mixed media collage is that you can arrange these images any way you like in order to tell a story, send a message, ask a question, stir a memory or evoke a feeling.  Even seemingly ordinary objects like postage stamps, receipts, labels, and price tags can become part of a work of art! You can make a piece whimsical or serious, happy or sad, romantic, wistful, silly...wherever the piece takes you!"

Yep, I think Kristi is hooked.  :)




Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Michael Billington

Note from Mel:  This marks the second in a series of 10 posts about various artists who work with ephemera.  I put out the call on Friday and I got some wonderful responses!  


"SL 666E with Rudd" by Michael Billington
Hello Ephemeraologists!  Today's artist, Michael Billington, also hails from the great country of England - Chorlton-cum-Hardy, Manchester, to be exact (although I admit I don't know how the Brits classify their cities!).  


I've actually "known" Michael for about four years now - we "met" on Flickr when he saw my collage work. We became contacts there and much to my surprise, Michael asked me if I'd like to be a part of his exhibit,  "A Centenary of Collage", back in February of 2009.  WOULD I?!  I sent two collages over the pond and was absolutely thrilled to be considered!  It was my first real exhibit EVER, and I owe it all to Michael.  :)


"Mascot" by Michael Billington
But let's hear about Michael in his own words: "I have been painting for some time, since I was old enough to hold a brush probably, and over the last ten years or more I have turned to collage as a medium and, more recently still, to printing; monoprints, collographs, etching, screenprinting and linoprints.
I have featured in numerous solo and group exhibitions in England and Ireland. My work is in private collections in England, Ireland, France, Canada and the USA."

As you can see, Michael has a very Dada aesthetic when it comes to his collage work.  I've always admired collagists who can fluidly combine ephemera to create a piece that speaks to the zeitgeist, and Michael captures it brilliantly.  For the longest time his Flickr avatar was a photo of Kurt Schwitters (my favorite collagist), whom I discovered thanks to Michael!

"Meeting" Michael online is just another of those examples of the miracle of social media.  To see other artists' work and be able to actually correspond still astounds me.  I love hearing about ideas from other collagists and Michael was one of the first to seriously discuss art with me.  Thanks Michael!

Monday, June 25, 2012

Josie Beszant

Note from Mel:  This marks the first in a series of 10 posts about various artists who work with ephemera.  I put out the call on Friday and I got some wonderful responses!  


Happy Monday, everyone!  I am so excited to begin our "Ephemera Artists" series today!  I figured that because my motto is "taking the discarded and making it arted", that you'd like to see how others interpret that in their own work.

For the next 10 days, I'll be featuring one artist per day.  I'll also be going alphabetically, lest anyone think I'm playing favorites.  :)  So let's get to it!

"Memory Specimen - Silence"by Josie Beszant
As the title implies, Josie Beszant is our first artist. Josie makes her home in the UK (more specifically, Masham, Yorkshire, England) and also runs The Gallery, where she represents approximately 50 artists (including herself).  She describes herself as "a collector of stories, poems, fragments of things."  That is absolutely apparent in her work!  I love how she incorporates ephemera like old photos, stamps, and music into her work.  Her collages are most certainly narrative!  I could make up a story for each one.  To me, they also have a dreamlike quality to them.  Here's what Josie says, in her own words:

"The Inheritance" - part of an ongoing
series called "The Sewing Room"


I am a collage artist and I particularly like using ephemera. I got into using ephemera gradually; I have always been a painter and included snippets of collage in that and gradually over the years the collage has overtaken the paint. I especially like using ephemera as it (is) the stuff that people have kept and then discarded. My work takes discarded objects from the past and through the reworking of them attempts to speak about the present and future and the emotions that we all experience.  It looks at decay and preservation, makes connections between people who have long gone from this world and our current experience of the world.


Fabulous!  


One of the best things about putting our calls for artists like this is seeing what everyone else does with ephemera, and it ALWAYS surprises me.  Josie's work is wonderful, and it was so nice to "meet" her through this call!  :D


We'll be back tomorrow with another artist - stay tuned!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Show me What ya Got!

No, this isn't some untoward advance - I think more highly of my readers than some tawdry dalliance!  :D

If any of you "like" my page on Facebook (and, really - why wouldn't you?), then you may have seen a request yesterday to see the art pieces you've done using ephemera.

Well now, I'm asking here!  If there are any of my readers out there who would like to share their Web sites and/or Facebook pages showing art they've created using ephemera, I'd love to hear from you!  Here's what you do:

1.  Using my e-mail mel(at)kolstad(dot)net, send me a link to your Web site and/or Facebook page.  Please DO NOT comment below - I'll delete them.
2.  In that same e-mail, briefly explain how you got into using ephemera in your work and why you enjoy using it.
3.  By e-mailing me, you agree for me to use your artwork on my blog for that particular post only.  I OF COURSE will give full credit and links to your photos where necessary.

That's it!  When I collect enough Ephemeraologists to make a good blog post, I will write all about you and your wonderful works.

You've all seen my work already - now it's YOUR turn!  :D

Happy Weekend, everyone!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Fa-fa-fa-fa Fashion!

You know that preconceived notion of artists being all funky, dressing in black, wearing crazy hair and jewelry, and generally having a very avant-garde sense of style?

I'm about to dispel that myth.  :D

Okay, there may have been a small stretch in late high school/college when I put some effort into what I wore but otherwise, it just hasn't been a priority for me.  My Fondy friends can attest for me that most days, unless I have a show or exhibit to attend, I'm wearing a plain t-shirt and jeans.  Around here, you can get away with this look just about everywhere, which is so nice.  No one expects you to dress up at any time, except "life events" like weddings.  The only reason I have any nice clothes at all is because my friend Tracy owns a clothing boutique called Lillians.  It's where I get all of my "I'm leaving the house" clothes.  :D

The weird thing is, I've always been really good at dating styles!  Even as a kid I could tell you the year of an illustration or photo just by the clothes and/or hairstyle.  I know the definitions of a "cloche", a "pencil skirt", a "chemise", and "worsted weight".  I just never made the connection between fashion and me.  Also, I would MUCH rather spend my money on art supplies, ephemera, or things around the house than for dressing this bod.  :D

That's not to say that I don't appreciate fabulous fashion when I see it, especially in books like this!  This is one of those "Art Instruction Schools" booklets that you could order for correspondence courses in art.  This particular book is from 1968 and still includes the order form for extra supplies!  It was one of the fabulous finds from the "rummage sale" we attended a couple weeks back.

I love the "sketchy" looks in the book and that scribbly-watercolor look that was so popular then.  I love the technique drawings that teach proportion.  And the color illustrations of jaunty "men about town" are the BEST.  :D

By the way, I was the first person to crack open this book - what a coup for me!  :D

I haven't done much with fashion in my collages, but what I have done is, of course, vintage.  :D


Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Fresh n' Fruity!

Currently in Fondy, we're suffering through/enjoying (depending on your point of view) a solid heat wave.  Wisconsin is weird, though - one day it can be 60 and the next day it's 95.  That's pretty much what this June's been like - we just had frost advisories "up nort" 9 days ago!

I'm not a big fan of summer - I'm a fall and winter person.  I LOVE those crisp autumn days and the smell of fireplaces and cinnamon and hunkering down for a long winter's nap.  But there is good in every season, of course, and one of my favorite things about summer is the fruit.

I don't know what happened to me, but about 5 years ago a switch went off and I discovered the joys of eating seasonally.  It all began with a batch of fresh strawberries that someone had given me, that they'd picked themselves.  I realized then and there that I had never really tasted a strawberry before that moment - it was so red and juicy and delicious I thought I'd died and gone to fruity heaven.

Now, I'll only eat strawberries and blueberries in the early summer, peaches and plums in June and July, apples and pears in early fall, and green grapes and citrus fruits in late winter (not locally grown, obviously, but I still love them).

Back in the day, our families lived by this rule too, although with the advent of canning and supermarkets you could eat an orange in September, if you wanted.  And speaking of supermarkets, that's where the ephemera comes into play!


Check out this wonderful Macintosh Apples sign!  I bought it at my friend Kim's place, Persimmons, when I was there for Ephemerafest.  I love it!  It has everything - an anthropomorphic apple with a feather-festooned fedora (like my alliteration, by they way?), fantastic fonts, handwriting, wonderful color - it's just so cool.  I plan on using it in something, I just don't know how yet.  :D


Here are three supermarket-centric brochures from the Florida Citrus Commission that are just spectacular.  They have no copyright dates but judging by the drawings and the photos inside, I'm going to put these at the mid-Fifties.  The crazy thing about these is that they're showing the grocers how to assemble these point-of-purchase displays themselves!  I'm not positive but I'm pretty sure that most of these displays come ready-to-use from the different companies nowadays, if for no other reason than uniformity in all supermarkets.

I love all three of these!  I got them at this estate sale almost exactly two years ago.  I also plan on using these in a supermarket-related collage.  Some day!  :D

Now if you'll excuse me, I''m off to make a sour cream peach pie.  I've been waiting all year to say that!  :D

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Here, Then Gone, Then Back Again

Have you ever read a book that changed your life?  I have, but it's not "Wuthering Heights" or "Catcher in the Rye" or "Pride and Prejudice" or any other wonderful classic.  It's this book here - "Symbols of America", by Hal Morgan.  I've talked about this book before, but I'll tell the story again:


My freshman year of college, 1986-87, was a lonely one for me.  All of my friends were still in high school and the only person I knew at school was my own mom, who was finishing up her B.S. in Social Work (my mom was super popular at UWGB so for most of that year I was known as "Susie's daughter").  My mom's classes went longer than mine, so I would while away the hours on the 4th floor of the Library Learning Center (now known as the Coffrin Library).  One day, while perusing the reference books (GEEK ALERT!), I came across it.....


It was like the ephemera/history/advertising heavens opened up and presented me with the PERFECT book.  Truly, I felt like Hal Morgan read my mind and emptied its contents on these pages.


History of Campbell's Soup - fascinating!

Because it was a part of the reference library, I couldn't check the book out.  So for several months, that was the routine:  mosey up to the 4th floor, find the book, and enjoy countless hours of logo geekdom.  Those days where someone else deigned to find the book and enjoy it for themselves were long days indeed.   Thank goodness that I received this wonderful book for my 18th birthday!  It's still one of my favorite gifts.


When I last wrote about the book, I said that I still owned it.  Sadly, that was not the case!  I guess I was so secure in the knowledge that it sat on one of my many book shelves that I never noticed that it was gone.  I don't even have a recollection of the last time I read it, so it could've been misplaced any time after 2003, when my first husby and I separated.  It could've gotten lost in a move, or I could've left it behind, or it could be buried in the basement.  Whatever the case, when I realized I no longer had it, I quick looked to see if it was available online.


Oh, how I loved that more recent Mr. Donut logo!  Too bad
they no longer exist here in the States - only in ASIA!

BINGO!!!  I am happy to report that I snagged a copy for $3.99 and it arrived in the mail yesterday!  It's not a nice hardcover like my original, but it's the same book.  God bless the Internet.  :)  Here's the weird thing - for some reason I remembered the book to have color illustrations.  If the book were written today it would be full color, but alas, that was not the case in 1986.


So, this is the story of the book that changed my life.  I discovered that I LOVED history, when explained through advertising logos.  I've always had a knack for dates, so reading about logos and what year they were copyrighted was a huge step toward finding my favorite ephemera at antique shops and, later, online.  It also helped me to discern between genuine and reproduction ephemera, something that has also helped me immeasurably and set the tone for my particular style of art work.


Hal Morgan, wherever you are, thank you for setting the stage for this wonderful career I've chosen.  I owe much of its origins to you.  :)



Monday, June 18, 2012

Golden Deliciousness!

I've said it before and I'l say it again today and probably a million more times - I have the BEST friends!

Today's case in point is about my friend Sara.  Sara works at our wonderful library and she has a job many bibliophiles would love - she works at the Book Cellar, the used book store on the lower level.  This book store sells not only the discarded library books, but others' donations as well.  I myself have donated to this store many times.

Sara looks out for me!  Any time she sees a vintage book that she thinks I might like, she messages me on Facebook.  And 100% of the time, she's hit the nail on the head!  But last Monday.....

Last Monday she let me know that a complete set of the Golden Encyclopediae and Dictionaries had come in.  That's a whopping 16 encyclopedic volumes and six dictionaries!


WHOA.  This was MAJOR.  I had been trying to gather as many Golden volumes as I could up until this point and managed one dictionary and four encyclopediae.  To have the complete set is a coup and a half!
The best part?  The whole box only set me back 10 bucks.  :)

I have already declared my love for the Golden Guide series here, and now my collection is complete.  Just look at some of the wonderful covers - this set is from 1959!




















I have created countless collages, big and small, with the items contained within these pages.  Here are just a few:


"Smoked Sardines" collage, available here



















Thank you SO much, Sara, for looking out for me!  You not only made me positively giddy, but you're a fantastic salesperson to boot!  :D

Friday, June 15, 2012

My Date with Conan!

The iconic Chicago Theater sign
(More specifically, it was OUR date with Conan, since Brian and I went together!)

Happy Friday, Ephemeraologists! (Or for my Southern Hemisphere friends, good Saturday morning!)  Thank you for indulging me with my re-run post yesterday - we left the house at 6 a.m. so that we could make it to Chicago by 9-ish, so no time to write!

In case you hadn't read yesterday's post, Brian and I got to experience a once-in-a-lifetime event - we got to  see Conan O'Brien LIVE at the Chicago Theater!!

I still can't believe we snagged tickets.  Back in April, Conan announced on his show that he was coming to Chicago in June and displayed the Web address where you could register for tickets.  During the commercial break I quick went online and tried.  On May 24 I got a confirmation letter stating that we had indeed landed ourselves two tickets.  The best part?  They're FREE!!!

I am SO going to make a pendant
for myself out of these wristbands!
After making sure that our pup Dudley was taken care of (thanks to my wonderful sis Jen and family!), we made our plans.  The tickets were first-come, first served.  The doors opened at 9 a.m. for ticket pick-up - we got there at 9:35 and the stand-by tickets were already gone.  By the time we got to the end of the line at about 9:50 to pick up our tickets, we discovered that we were in Row J - of the SECOND balcony!  I'm so glad we got there when we did because had we waited even an hour, I don't think we would've gotten our tickets at all (they always oversell).  We were given our AMAZING wrist bands - you'd better believe I'm going to keep these! - and sent us on our way.

Okay!  We're set!  We had about 5 1/2 hours to kill before they opened the theater doors for seating, so we decided to head to one of my favorite places in the world - the Art Institute of Chicago.  We spent the day only in the Modern wing, which suited me just fine.  I got to see my precious Joseph Cornell and Kurt Schwitters art works, so my day was already made (if you click on the links, you'll be able to see why I like them so much - they worked with ephemera!).  :)

After art viewing we dined at the Terzo Piano restaurant, located inside the Art Institute.  We knew we'd be in the theater until 6:30 and that we'd have to leave right after that, so we made this our "big" meal.  It was delightful.  :D

Shot of the stage before they made us turn our cameras off!
Okay!  On to the theater!  We found our seats pretty quickly and once the show got going, it went pretty much how you see it on TV.  As you can see, the stage itself isn't that big.  And even though we had nosebleed seats, we could still see everything that was going on (though the screens helped).

If you watch the show, then you've probably heard the name Jimmy Pardo - he's the comedian who warms up the crowd for the LA shows.  He was in Chicago, too!  After his short set there was about a 15 minute wait, but then the band came out and did a couple numbers (MUCH better in person than even the show!)

Finally, Andy Richter took the stage and we knew it wouldn't be much longer.  If you take a look at the photo to the left, you might be able to make out his podium - it's right below that crane camera on the right.  The stage manager gave everyone the signal, the applause signs lit up, and the band started the theme song.  Andy began the opening of the show.  After that, Conan came out and the crowd went WILD!!!

If you didn't watch the show last night, besides all of the wonderful comedy bits, we got to see a cameo from Scottie Pippin and Nick Offerman; the guests were Adam Sandler and comedian T.J. Miller.  It was a great show and Conan even stayed out longer and jammed with the band.  What a fantastic experience.  I'm going to put yesterday way up there in the "awesome days" file - it was perfect from beginning to end.

The only thing missing is the Team Coco logo!  :D

Inside is a list of all the great
comedians who performed -
Sarah Silverman, Kevin Smith,
Aziz Ansari, etc.
Oh, and besides the cool wristbands, I'm OF COURSE going to keep our tickets!  We were also given these little booklets from the good folks at TBS, the network that airs Conan and sponsored the "Just for Laughs" comedy festival this week.  THAT little booklet is going in the Perepetual Ephemera Depository!  :D

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Wish you were Here!

Note from Mel:  I'm re-running this post because we're on our way to see Conan O'Brien tape his show at the Chicago Theater!  We are BEYOND excited - in fact, we "wish you were here"!  :D  Back with a new post on Friday!  :D

Can you believe it's August already?  Here in my neck of the woods, the kids go back to school in about a month.  You know what that means - if you haven't already, it's time to start that vacation before it's too late!

Not having any kids, Brian and I could hypothetically vacation anytime we want.  We've gone on some Duesies - Alaska, Hawaii, Toronto (twice), Duluth, Washington, D.C. (twice), Denver, Fargo (don't laugh - Fargo has my FAVORITE HOTEL EVER).  Alas, we haven't really taken a vacation in the last two years; it was a sacrifice we made when I quit my job at The Reporter.  Skipping vacation is a really easy way to save money and truth be told, we haven't missed it much.  Instead, we're choosing to explore our own state and its close neighbors.  When you live in Wisconsin, this is pretty easy and fun!

When you leave your home, for whatever reason, you MUST write postcards!  Okay, I'm TERRIBLE at this - I think the only time I wrote postcards was when I was in Europe (that's my Hotel Hungaria postcard to my family from January of 1988).  I have some cool postcards from friends and family when they've vacationed - they're more on the ball than I.  :D

But postcards used to be for everything!  I have a great collection of photo postcards and some that are ridiculous, given to me by my friend Dina (now how did she know I'd like these?).  Aren't they wonderfully awful?

I love postcards of old motels.  Every time I view one, I can't help but feel nostalgic for a time in our recent past when a stay at a motel was postcard-worthy.  It makes me sad to think that most of these motels, unless situated on a stretch of highway with no other option or located in a "kitchy" spot like Route 66, have been relegated to the transient set.  Even some of ours here in Fondy have that unfortunate reputation (it seems like many, um, "ladies of the evening" are caught at these types of accommodations).

With the arrival of the Internet and mobile phones with Foursquare and other sites, it seems quaint to send a postcard now, doesn't it?  Then again, I can't put a Facebook post up on my fridge.  And who doesn't love getting a postcard in the mail?  That kind of stuff makes my day!

I have created some pieces utilizing old postcards - they're so versatile and fun to use!





Wednesday, June 13, 2012

A Plethora of Patterns!

I know I've said this innumerable times before, but I have wonderful friends!  I am so lucky to have these people in my life.  I think they like me too.  Why?  Because I help them clean their families' homes.  :D

Case in point - my good friend Amy e-mailed me and said, "Hey Mel - would you have any use for old patterns? My mom was cleaning out her garage."

"Absolutely!", I answered back.  So she said she'd put them aside for me until we saw each other.  Fanastic!  I am always in need of a fewOHMYGOODLORD



When Amy handed me the bag on Monday, my jaw nearly dropped!  There had to be 20 patterns in there, I thought (just counted - 23, to be exact)!













These are all 80s patterns, which is new for me.  Up until now I've only had 1960s sets, which only featured illustrations on the front.  As you can see these have a photo AND an illustration.  BINGO!  I'm also getting quite a fashion history lesson - I had forgotten that the 80s were so inspired by vintage fashion!  I'm seeing a lot of Forties-esque styles in this bag - I guess that answers the question to "Why the huge shoulder pads?"  :D

I've proclaimed my love of patterns before but I'll say it again - I love these because they're so versatile!  I can use the photos or illustrations on the front:

"Flower Girls" clock


"How to Match Plaids" ATC

Or I can use the patterns themselves:


"Sewing Machine" pendant, available here

"In Fine Form" ATC

"Consensus" ATC

See why I love them so much?  These patterns will do whatever you want them to do.  I also have another skill in my arsenal now - papermaking.  :)  I can't WAIT to throw some pattern paper in with some cotton linter and see what happens.  When I get a chance to make some I will definitely show you the results!  :D

Thank you again, my dear Amy, for this wonderful gift!  I so appreciate you thinking of me!  :D