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2015, A Year In Review-ish

About to step into the new year and I think, 2015 wasn’t that bad. There were a few promising moments which made it not suck so much. There were a few times when I said, this is really great being me. And there were a few moments when I was painfully aware of our collective humanity. Fiona Marie Peaach in her jammies and green tutu on Shalavee.com

Gift Exchange on Shalaveee.com

Homemeade card on IG from Shalavee.comHomemeade card on IG from Shalavee.com

Brazillian ham and bean soup on Shalavee.com

We all have our perspective to wrestle with. Mine is suddenly suspect as I roll into 2016 with a new word and consciousness. But that’s the next post.

26 April Workshop badge on Shalaveee.con

Mosaic butterfly on Shalavee.com

Enjoy 2015’s  beautiful photos. Most have been collected under my daily practice of the ‘year of making’ I started at the beginning of the year. A great way to collect my pictures every month.

 

At the beach on Shalavee.com

Fiona's Birthday decorations for 2015 on Shalavee.com

 Silouettes in Fionas room on Shalavee.com

This post is about what I’ve captured, those irrefutable moments we shared. This year was lovely. Two year-olds aren’t really lovely and yet, she takes a wonderful photo and leaves you thinking she is. Magic

Lisa's tree on Shalavee.com

 

Peaches on Shalavee.com

26 Oct Mommy and Fiona on Shalavee.com

15 Aug Eamon and Fiona on Shalavee.com

I look at these and think, there was more here than I gave life credit for. And I am grateful again to have lived it.

Steve with Fiona and Eamon on Shalavee.com

Me in my chair with my kids on Shalavee.com

If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

Christmas Floral Designs in 2015

The beginning of the Holiday season was rather busy. I was offered an opportunity to flex my floral design wings this year and I took it. A chance to make multiple Christmas floral design pieces and decorate a Christmas tree for a house on a charity house tour. I was asked to do it so I couldn’t say no. Starting in November. I designed and shopped for every room specifically according to the dimensions of the space. I designed with silk florals, feathers, twigs, and ribbons, as well as respruced a few things my client had. front hall piece on Shalavee.com

I took two tours of the house to see what my friend needed. And there was something to be designed for almost every room. 15 pieces plus a tree. I was extraordinarily nervous. Could I design the right stuff to fit each space and would it be funky/uptown enough for my client?

front doorh wreath on Shalavee.com

mantel on Shalavee.com

Her house is very beautiful and neutral and although technically I was doing Christmas floral design, she really wanted more of a winter inspired theme than Christmas.

bedroom wreath on Shalavee.com

bathroom tall cotton piece on Shalavee.com

bedroom piece on Shalavee.com

bathroon cotton piece on Shalavee.com

The tree was a collaborative effort when the client sent me a picture of what she’d seen and wanted. A very Southern sumptuous tree inspired by birds, feathers, sparkling balls, magnolia blooms, and cotton ball sprigs. The ribbon technique was also new for me and I loved it so much I used it on my tree.Southern style tree on Shalavee.com

Southern style tree closeup on Shalavee.com

Southern style tree topper on Shalavee.com

Other than the tree, my favorites pieces were the front door wreath and these little trees.

bedroom Christmas tree on Shalavee.com

bathroom Christmas tree on Shalavee.com

These were the little angels she’d already placed in the bathroom when I showed up with this little tree which worked really well with them.

bookshelf pieces on Shalavee.comAlthough the homeowner ended up not using these pieces on either side of the mantle, I was mostly pleased with their scale and design. She felt the red in them felt too Christmassy. And maybe red flocked manzilla branches are too funky for anyone but me.

bookshelf pieces on Shalavee.com

reindeer on a tray on Shalavee.com

The tour was a smashing success. The tree was a collaborative effort and was the fave of the tour. People begged to have their picture taken next to the tree. I was finally able to grab some pictures of my work today and wanted to finally show everything off “in situ”. All the designs are silks except the fresh garland door wreath and the magnolia leaves used here and there.bannister swag on Shalavee.com

Gladly, now that this is complete, I can move on to finishing my house which has been decorated in fits and spurts due to child-free time and the flu. It will all happen eventually I’m sure. Five days and counting.

If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

My Creative Process

It was Kathleen Shannon of Braid Creative, in one her many wise creativity business coaching type emails, who suggested I didn’t have to be nervous about every creative job I took on. I already had a creative process but may just be unaware of. Stopped me dead.

Because knowing and believing in this process I’ve been obliviously using each time I design an event space or a decorative element, is what will lead me to self-efficacy and the feeling that I can do this again and again. And I want that more than anything right now.

So I’ve attempted to describe what I consider to be my creative process. And this is what I settled on.

  1. Cull the Concept– Comprehend the limits, scale, purpose, scope, colors, theme, mechanics, time line/schedule needs and limits.

  2. Go vision shopping – Surf Pinterest for images that feel like where I’m headed and/or go shopping to see what’s available or on trend.

  3. Download and print out pictures – Create an inspiration file or Pinterest page.

  4. Create a rough design – Based around price and availability of supplies, color, simplicity, scale, and impact, describe and claim the design parameters.

  5. Collect supplies needed. Create a mock-up or prototype if necessary.

  6. Write a timeline – Consider how much time the project will take and count back your time from installation. Write out a schedule/timeline for the work.

  7. Get to work !

    Here’s a perfect example of Inspirational pictures and their actual interpretation.  This was a jazz club themed fundraiser . That post is here .

    This inspiration picture from Pinterest…

    became this.

Red curtain and purple ceiling with stars on Shalavee.com

And this

lampshade cloche from Pinterest on Shalavee.cominspired this

lampshade centerpiece for the UU review on Shalavee.com

Since my discovery of Pinterest, my events are mostly done with this method. My 15 foot Christmas tree redesign a couple of years ago was a result of trolling for ideas online and then recreating all the bits with stuff I had at home. That post is here.

Visual people are visual. Once we see something that excites us, it’s almost as if we want to own it somehow. Whether taking a picture of it or recreating it somehow in our own materials, the artistic world is like the rolling waves of the ocean. We are racing and tagging, tripping and tumbling over visions and concepts we’ve been inspired by  from other places and sources to create our own version of the vision. So if Pinterest helps, I say yes. I also say set a timer of like 30 minutes. There’s only so much you need and then you need to get out before you start feeling overstimulated and in need of moving on with our day. Am I right?

Curious to know how you work and what your process looks like. Similarities? And this may really work for visual and not for writing. Unless a beautiful image sets you to writing madly.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter orPinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

The Creative Exchange

Who knows how and when I fell upon Samantha Dunne’s blog Dunne With Style. I followed a paper trail most likely because she, like myself, plays with paper which she parlayed into a business offering gift wrapping packages for sale called “wrap it up”. And what blossomed from that was an opportunity Samantha saw to spread the happy contagion of gifting people via Instagram and snail mail with the Creative Exchange. Find the details here.

About her community making project created in 2014, she says,”From those that have already joined The Creative Exchange journey there have been new friendships formed, connections far greater than could have been imagined through social media, inspiration to learn and make snail mail and thank you cards, handmade gifts…. the thoughtfulness of the creative community that have connected is beyond my wildest dreams. This is what The Creative Exchange is all about.” Enough said. This is her about page picture for the project.

Samantha Dunne's Creative Exchange on Shalavee.com

Let me also add that I love her thoughtful self-aware blog posts about cheering yourself on and discovering what you are besides your self-doubt. This is the same speak that I share to my readership and I think that the connections with other creatives has improved my self-opinion and awareness and consequently my self-esteem. So I truly enjoy the wisdom she shares as she forges a path before me and my fellow online hang abouts and bloggers trying to figure out what’s next. Leaders that lead us back to ourselves are priceless.

Samantha Dunne's Creative Exchange on Shalavee.com

So this past Creative Exchange round I raised my hand to take part and I was chosen. I was given a random name of a person in the US (Ms. Dunne is based in Australia) and mine was given to someone, and we commenced the online stalking for inspiration. All I could discern from my gift recipient was that they loved snail mail and gift exchanges so I settled on mostly supplies to play with. I hoped that my Secret Santa would be able to tell enough about me by searching my feed. And everything needed to be in the mail by November 30th. Which in the US meant I was scrambling to pull it all together during the Thanksgiving holiday. Whew.The Creative Exchange on Shalavee.com

But I did have a bit of fun when I set my mind to the shopping and the wrapping. I picked pink and kraft as my theme and away I went just grabbing for whatever was in my bins of my craft room. What fun! I have really enjoyed giving random cards and presie packages to my Instagram tribe and I hope that this exchange will connect me with more like-minded paper lovers. I sent the package off on Black Friday so it should reach them by Monday. And I’ll be watching my post box for my goody box too.

If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

Halloween Eve Decorations

A not so little boy asked if we could pull out the Halloween decorations please? I told him no. But that was because I planned to do it today and, of course, it’s all up in the attic. So while he was off on a field trip today and Fiona was napping, I threw some stuff around the living room that we dine in.left side of Halloween mantle on Shalavee.com

right side of Halloween mantle on Shalavee.com

rats and mums on Shalavee.com

left side of the bar decorations on Shalavee.com

right side og the bar decorations on Shalavee.com

Miss Chessie decided to “help” by jumping up on the sideboard/bar and lay down in middle of my stuff right as I was getting started.

Chessie decorations on Shalavee.com

And she ended up looking like a vixen pin-up so there was my Instagram picture for National Cat Day.

Vixen kitten Chessie on Shalavee.com

Tonight’s tradition is a Friday night movie night and pizza. Something scary but not. The Scared Shrekless special from 2010 is my favorite “must see” for Halloween now! I laugh so hard. But first carving the pumpkins, a family creative activity my husband no longer fights. Then we line up the lit jack ‘o lanterns on the bookshelf to enjoy while we watch our movie.

batcage on Shalavee.com

Tomorrow is Halloween. We’ll be doing our grilled cheese and tomato soup and potato chip traditional meal. A first night out for Fiona trick or treating that she’ll remember. We’ve told Fiona Halloween isn’t scary, it’s pretend scary. She keeps repeating this back to us.

Do take a look at former Halloween decorations here.

Wanna see the whole month of posts? Start here.Wanna see yesterday’s post, go here.

If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

 

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