Tiny Village in a Big City

I say this over and over, and most likely I've said it on this blog a time or two, but I feel so very lucky to be able to be creative for a living.  It's something I never take lightly, and I am grateful for every single opportunity I have to create.   "Making" makes me happy. I can't explain to you why exactly, it just does. It scratches a very deep itch inside of me.

This project that I'm about to share with you brought me so much joy during its creation, I can hardly believe it was a "job".

It was a dream.

My very favorite client brought me on board again to help create arrangements and decorate the Presidential Suite at the Seattle Westin for their company Christmas party.  If you would like to see what we did last year, please visit this post.

Even though the party was small, just sixteen guests total, our ideas were big, and every available surface was adorned.

On the center of the 8ft square dining table, I created an elaborate holiday village.  It was layered and dense with many, many details.


I placed several rectangular mirrors in the center, and built the small city around them.  The houses were simple paper forms that I found at an art supply store. I painted their roofs and sprinkled them with "snow". The sides of the houses were covered in glittered paper in slivery browns, golds, taupes, and warm metallics.


The "landscaping" was a mix of tiny, fresh trees, bottle brush trees, and compact floral arrangements.   The green trees were lit with tiny lights - the bulbs were no larger than a grain of rice.


The houses were trimmed with paper wreaths, bows, and garlands.


A faux votive placed inside each house gave them warmth, and brought the silhouettes in the windows to life.


There were many tiny details for the guests to discover, like the reindeer on the roof of this little house.


The arrangements were a mix of metallic and natural elements. I used hydrangeas, ivory spray roses, berzillia berries with christmas balls and glittered pinecones.


There were lots of candles too, which brought the sparkly elements to life.


Choice provided the beautiful linens and chargers for our table.  Liza assisted us with our selections and Claire did the linen installation. There is an art to placing a table cloth and folding a napkin. I didn't know this until I saw Claire work her magic last year.


We rented acrylic "Ghost Chairs" for the table.  I love their lightness next to the density of our table.


The view from the Presidential Suite is outstanding.  Honestly, I don't think there's a better view of Downtown Seattle .   I love how our tiny tabletop town is dwarfed by our big city.


Linda, my client, has a great collection of holiday props.   We both had fun putting these pieces into place.


There were flowers and candles strewn about the room to warm the space.



You would never guess by the serenity of this photo what a mad scrabble it was to get everything moved into this space on the 47th floor, set up, and cleaned up.   Getting these tasks completed before the guests arrived for the party was a Christmas Miracle!


Working on this event was most definitely the highlight of my year, and perhaps the highlight of my floral/crafting career thus far. Thank you for giving me this amazing opportunity to create for you, Linda. It was a joy.


Glitter Haus is TOMORROW!

I'm putting the finishing touches on a couple of batches of ornaments. I always like to do something new for each craft sale I participate in, so I created this little pieces just for tomorrow's event, Glitter Haus.

Of course, I'll be bringing lots of other crafts I've created for this season, I just wanted to show you what's new!

 If you're in the area, please come by!  Full details on the sale can be found HERE.  And if you would like to see more of what I'll be bringing along, please visit this post.





Glitter Haus!! THIS Saturday!!!

Tacoma's sparkliest crafting event, Glitter Haus, is this Saturday and I hope you'll be able to attend.  

We've put together a fabulous show the year filled with some of the South Sound's finest makers.   We'll be serving sweets and savories and plenty of holiday cheer.

Please stop by between the hours of 11:00 AM AND 3:00 PM at 1104 N Steele, Tacoma, WA.

I've been one busy little elf, and will have a booth full of holiday glittery goodness.  I'll have some of my old standards like my pins and paper ornaments and I'll be bringing LOTS of new stuff too!

To learn more about the event, please visit the Glitter Haus website.  If you plan to attend, please visit our Facebook event page to RSVP or send me an email, and I'll put you on the list.


Thanks so much!  I hope to see you there!!


Holiday Projects!

Here are a few of the holiday projects I created for the fine folks at Fiskars.  The step-by-steps for each will be showing up in their online project galleries over the next month, so be on the lookout for them!

Gift Card Wallets


Candy Garland


Woodland Centerpiece


Paper Ornaments


 New Year's Eve Hats


* Full disclosure, Friends...  I am paid to play with Fiskars products.    The FTC wants me to tell you that, so I am.


It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year!

Yes! It's holiday craft sale season!!  The 5th Annual Tacoma is for Lovers  Artist Craft Fair kicks things off at King's Books this weekend.  Each year the show gets better and better, so I promise it will be nothing less than stellar.   There's always a broad selection of awesome vendors from Tacoma, Seattle, and Olympia offering incredible goods.   For full details, and to see all the fabulous vendors participating, click HERE or visit the TIFL Facebook page.

5th Annual Tacoma is for Lovers Artist Craft Fair
Saturday and Sunday November 17th and 18th
11:00 AM - 4:00 PM
King's Books
218 St Helens Ave Tacoma, Washington 98402

Other projects and commitments kept me out of the craft room, so I got a late start on my holiday craft sale crafting.  During this busy pocket, all I could think about was sitting down at my table and making things.  Finally, this week I was able to just MAKE.   And I made A LOT.

Here's a preview of the 2012 holiday offerings...

I've done the lantern ornaments the past few years.  I always try to offer new color combinations, but truth be told,  the first to sell are always red and green, so I made lots of those.


Hoppy Holidays!  I often incorporate critters at christmas time.  Normally it's deer and birds, but this year I decided to add bunnies into the mix.



I also made a selection of these little badge gift tags.  They have adhesive on the back, so just peel and stick on a gift box or bag.


These pocked-sized notebooks make excellent stocking stuffers.


Do you like Christmas?  Then maybe you need one of these for your winter coat lapel.  Show your holiday spirit!


There are many paper wreaths and many colors and sizes to chose from.



An army of little gift ornaments...


... adorned with deer, birds and bunnies.


I've been doing lots of experimenting with a new, metallic crepe paper. It's wonderful to work with - you can really manipulate the petals and parts and the paper will hold its shape.  I used tiny, vintage glass christmas balls for the flower centers.



These festive, sparkly bird clips can trim a package or a tree branch.


Need a little Christmas?  A little bottle of Christmas spirit?  Have a studio apartment and no room for a tree?

The tiny trees inside measure a little more than an inch.


I'm still making a little more, and will have lots of pins, hats and garlands that I'll be bringing along.
My table will be packed with holiday goods!

I hope to see you all there this weekend.   It's a great way to shop local, and support the many fine artists and crafters of the Puget Sound.   Please join us!!

Oh, and mark your calendars, folks!  Our second annual Glitter Haus is Saturday, Dec 1st.  Details HERE!


Keeping it Tidy

Because of the DIYs I write, I'm always experimenting with new tools and mediums.  My collection of craft supplies has grown fast.

Once I started working for Fiskars, it quickly spiraled into an out-of-control state.  I had piles of supplies and boxes of tools everywhere, and it reached a point where it was nearly impossible to find anything.  I had to figure out a way to organize it all.

I prefer vintage pieces over new, but after years of an unsuccessful hunt for that perfect storage piece to house all these items, I gave up and bought plastic stackable drawers.  They're not pretty, but they're practical.


To make them a little more aesthetically pleasing, I trimmed the faces of each drawer with decorative papers. I selected patterns that were vintage-inspired and in my favorite colors. 


The drawers are filled already, but it's easy to add another set or two and expand as needed.

I group similar items together.  One row of bins is filled with materials for corsage making. Another is all crepe paper and other flower making supplies.


I have an insane number of craft punches.  I love them.  It's my favorite crafting gadget and they occupy a lot of real-estate in this storage system.





To help me remember what shapes I have, I created these reference sheets.  I do my best to keep my punches in order in the drawers, but using these sheets makes things easier.  It also prevents me from buying duplicates, which I've done on more than one occasion.


I try to be tidy, but in the middle of a mad crafting session, it's really hard to stay that way. Having adequate, easily accessible storage does help.

It's not the ideal solution, but for now,  everything has a place.

One day I'll find that perfect vintage cabinet filled with oodles of tiny drawers to help contain the craft tools and clutter.  Until then, this will just have to do.

I'm always curious to see how others keep their space organized.  If you've got any lovely ideas for keeping your crafts in order, do share! Or if you've stumbled across some inspiring spaces, I would love to see them too!

Hello Halloween

I am so excited that October is JUST around the corner and soon I'll be able to decorate my home with miniature gourds, black cats and glittery spiders.  I do love my holidays, and Halloween is right up there near the top of my favorites list.

I've already started my Halloween crafting - with the Fiskars projects, we work months ahead.

 Here's a peek at a few pieces that will be posted on their website soon.



And the instructions for these little Halloween headbands are already available HERE.



Thanks to my little friend, Opal, who was kind enough to model for me.


Paper Flowers Classes at Impress


I'm excited to announce I'll be teaching several classes on paper flower making  at Impress this August.

All of you paper crafters in the area probably know about Impress and what a wonderful store it is.  They have an incredible selection of stamps, punches, papers, envelopes,  and all sorts of crafting tools. I shop there all the time for my crafting supplies, so I am thrilled to be teaching at their fine stores.


Here's a little description of the class:

Creating flowers from crepe paper is a fun and gratifying craft. From simple materials – just paper, tape and wire - you can create the most beautiful blooms! 

In a couple of hours, you’ll learn how to create several styles of paper flowers using a thick, rich European crepe paper and leave with lovely bouquet in hand! 

Please bring a sharp pair of scissors. Class Fee -$35

And here's the schedule:
Saturday Aug 4th 11:00 AM - 1:00 PM Bellevue Square 425-453-2748
Saturday Aug 18th 11:00 AM - 1:00 PM University Village 206-526-5818
Saturday Aug 25th 11:00 AM - 1:00 PM Tukwila 206-901-9101

To register, please call the appropriate Impress location.   To see all the fabulous classes they're hosting this summer, you can download the schedule here.

I hope to see you all there!