5 totally random and cool things


– Had dinner with my Etsy team, Crafty Chica, and Pattie Wack last night. We talked for hours about any and everything and by everything I mean everything crafty. Lots of great ideas and insight was shared. Truly awesome and I know everyone had a great, great time 🙂 At one point, we got shooshed by another patron at Red Robin. Come on! It’s Red Robin! Anyway, I think I was responsible for part of that. Sometimes I talk WAY TO LOUD. A lot of times my friends have to tell me to quiet down. I don’t realize how loud I’m talking!

– Really love this post by Elsie Flannigan and her 70’s doe-eyed children artwork. This girl is on the trends. Love it (esp. the buttons in the hair illustration)

– Wanna see where I work? Well, Cathy of California features the very colorful facade of the building I work in on her blog. Check it out here and here and here. A must see!

– OK, so I can’t say the last two designers on Project Runway have had awesome outfits, but I feel they keep kicking off designers who have strong conceptual designs. I feel this is necessary on this show to keep it fresh and different. Is that just me. Come on Heidi…sometimes those people can come up with some really COOL bizarro stuff that’s also beautiful if you give them the chance.

– I just did a list of finished projects (not yet photographed) for my 24 craft projects in 24 hours. I have 6 finished! I really could add 2 or 3 more into that mix that I’m not quite sure about and may feature them if I run out of time, but I’m chugging along. I think I’m doing well so far. I’m enjoying making the projects. It’s hard to come up with all the ideas (well, ok, not THAT hard), but I’m trying to come up with a variety that covers all the Halloween bases from jewelry to costumes to home decor to party planning. I have a lot of ideas I’m planning on sharing! I can’t believe I’m going to keep them secret for close to a month. It’s so unlike me not to share (though, I will say, I can keep secrets if I’m asked to, I really can, I just get exciting sharing my projects). Oh, if you have anything you would like to see, please do share. I will try to incorporate any suggestions you have into my planning!

Well, off to bed. It’s late and I don’t feel so great! Well, no not really. I feel fine. Just tired and need to get some rest!

Until next time Swellions!


Inside Crafty Chica’s bag of goodies

crafty chica in the land of toys

Kathy is town this week and she had a bag of toys and trinkets that were colorful, bright, and fun! She told me that she had gotten all of them off Ebay and that she hadn’t done anything with them yet. She offered to let me take them home and I took several photos of them that I thought I would share!

For the pic above, I broke out my Crafty Chica™ bobblehead and poked her head through a shirt box and filled in trinkets all around her face. I was inspired by Boopsie Daisy’s Flickr Stream. I love the bright, candy-coated look of her photos. Her doll photos are so inspirational and a true visual delight. I could look at them for hours!

Inside the bag of goodies was lots of colorful rings… with scorpions, roaches, and lizards!

glitter goblin
I love these little guys. They are kinda like my zombie finger puppets. Anytime I get my hands on a puppet, I like to give it character and make it chase after people. I can’t help it. I just always feel a compulsion to do so. You can tell this one belongs to Crafty Chica™! It has glitter all over it!

tiny trinkets
Check out all the kitschy trinkets! These were some of my favorites. I love the babies, martini shaker, door knocker, hot dog, money and tea cup best.

I can’t wait to see what Kathy makes with these. Time will tell!

Until next time Swellions!


Meeting and making new friends at Maker Faire!

This past weekend at Maker Faire, I met so many cool people (not all were new, because I knew of them or had conversed with them over e-mail). Anyway, it is always super cool to meet people who you’ve admired from afar.

crafty pink ladies
Here’s me with Kathy a.k.a. Crafty Chica and Sister Diane! I’ve actually hung with Kathy before and always have a great time with her, but it was my first time meeting Diane. She has so much insight and it was so cool to talk and share ideas and thoughts on the craft industry together. It was awesome! Oh, and by the way, notice the shirt I’m wearing, I bought it at Old Navy and died it randomly with Purple One-Step Tie dye from Tulip™.

maya in the moment
I also was stoked to get to hang with Kathy’s daughter Maya. I’ve enjoyed watching Maya’s videos online and she is so funny and sweet 🙂 We goofed off and I even did my Roger Rabbit dance for her to film. We will see if they show up later in one of her videos.

me & peptogirl
My soul sister in design and craftiness Amy Cluck a.k.a. Peptogirl was also there and we walked around the show together for a bit (we had to stop to try on some wooden mustaches). If you haven’t visited her web site, it is a must! It is so adorable and totally my speed! She has put together Indie Sacramento for quite a while now and I don’t know how she does it all! Her blog is one of my favorite blogs…I totally appreciate the design (I think we have a similar design aesthetic in a lot of ways) and she makes the cutest crafts 🙂 She has a lot of tutorials and business insight on there too! I’m hoping maybe we can hang out some weekend together…we’re only like 3 hours away from each other!

I also had the pleasure of meeting and talking social media with Rob of Threadbanger, chatting it up with the Craftzine gal editors, meeting paper extroidonaire Jeffrey Rudell, Backcountry Betty authorJennifer Worwick, and Michaela Murphy. I met a lot of really other fabulous folks as well. The cool think about crafty folks at these events is that they are just so nice and down to earth. It’s like being part of a big happy community…everyone is so supportive.

Sorry about not posting the robots like I promised, but you can see some cool ones in my Maker Faire set on my Flickr stream! Also check out more Maker Faire photos I took here I love robots (I even talk like one on many occasions), but I just didn’t feel like posting about them today!

Hope you have a fun and inspiring day! And go and check out my crafty friends’ sites and get super inspired!

Until next time Swellions!


Pretty Pin-up Shrine

pretty pin-up shrine

This is a project I whipped up over the weekend using the Crafty Chica™ Love Shrine™ Workshop in a Box™ as shown here (with all its contents).

Crafty Chica™ Love Shrine™ Workshop in a Box™

I have always, always loved these little shrine boxes that Crafty Chica developed with Duncan Enterprises (a.k.a. the company I work for). I was super excited when the whole line came out last year at CHA! It was something very fresh and different and bold and glittery! The one thing I admire about Kathy Cano-Murillo (the Crafty Chica) is that she really wants people to explore their own creativity and to make things their own. That’s what I tried to do with this project.

While her style is much more Mexican pop art, my style is much more retro meets modern kitsch and I wanted to celebrate that in my shrine. I also wanted to finally do something with some great images I got from a Cynthia Hart’s Retro Calendar from 2004. Oh, and the center image is Gil Elvgren Pin-up Postcard book.

Pin-up page in old calendar

I chose pin-ups, cause I wanted to place my shrine in my pin-up/glamourized bathroom. I currently have a couple of other 50’s images in there and I thought I could somehow mount it onto the wall. I’m sure a little mounting bracket will work just fine! Anyway, I decorated it with craft paint, glitter, Glam it Up Iron-on Crystals (I love adding bling for earrings on images like this), and the contents of the kit (there’s a lot of goodies that come with the kit, so you prob. won’t end up using it all, but it’s nice to have options!).

I just wanted to share this little project this Fat Tuesday! Until next time Swellions!


Jewelrymaking and other random stuff

mini ornament pinup jewelry

Tonight I worked on a LOT of projects for my friend Jessica. I was helping her out with some Christmas presents for her fam. I have a big box of earrings that I made a year and a half or so back that are made with lots of pretty beads, but the metal on the headpins and earring backs are tarnished. They had been in a local shop for a year or so and I guess people touching and time tarnished them away. Oh well… I whipped out my trusty pliers and wire cutters and went to work! I also restrung and fixed some of her broken jewelry. Somewhere along the way during this night I found the time (along with her help) to make a couple of illusion necklaces for my friend Tasha’s wedding along with some super cute earrings made with mini pinup ornaments dressed in Santa/candy cane attire (obviously shown above). Aren’t they cute? I need to touch them up a bit (too bad I don’t know a model car maker – these are so small and intricate!) They really aren’t that heavy!

Here’s the illusion necklace that I made:
just an illusion

So in other news, so very random things going on in my world:

1) I only just yesterday bought my first holiday gift. Like many, I’m going to try to downsize this year and do more sentimental stuff like jewelry, personal graphic design projects, and ornaments. I plan on sharing an idea this week that is an affordable/sentimental gift if you are looking to shoot two birds with one stone. Maybe tomorrow that will be my featured project…hmmmmm. Stay tuned!

2. OK, this is a very random thought, but I just saw part of the show, A Real Chance at Love on VH1. I really don’t understand what it takes to be famous these days. This show is a reality spinoff of a reality spinoff of a reality spinoff of a reality spinnoff. Sad.

3. Jennifer Perkin’s did a super cool post and made wall art out of jewelry. Check it out here. It was super clever and inspiring. I noticed in the comment links that Kathy Cano-Murillo, The Crafty Chica left a comment referring to artist Jason Mecier. His work is so inspiring as well and super kitschy. It truly makes me giddy! Oh, and I also love the Brady Bunch floorplan on his home page. I once saw a book that had a wide variety of floorplans from TV shows in it…Hmm…let me google that one…oh look…here it is: TV Sets Fantasy Blueprints book! Truly, what did we do before the internet? I saw this book about 7 years ago in the clearance bin and should have picked it up then and there at the Owensboro Waldenbooks store, but I decided against it! What was I thinking?

4. Obviously, if you haven’t noticed, I changed my banner to reflect the holidays. I’m a Swellette!

Until next time Swellions!


Wow, the weekend’s over already?

I hate how quickly weekends seem to come and go. I need another day! I’d give my left arm, but I think I might miss it.

I did a whole lot of nuttin’ today. I did craft today and made some jewelry that I plan on submitting to a mag. I also watched a lot of TV. On my set today was MTV’s True Life (I’m Deaf and I’m a Compulsive Shopper), Tori and Dean Home Sweet Hollywood, and Pride & Prejudice (I could watch that one over and over).

I didn’t take too many pics this weekend, but I did take some foodie pics. I made yummy fruit salsa + cinnamon chips. The recipe for these is loosely based on this one…Annie’s Fruit Salsa & Cinnamon Chips. The cinnamon chips are a cinch as well…I just cut up tortillas, spread butter on both sides and sprinkled with cinnamon and sugar. It is a nice sweet summer treat!

fruit salsa

cinnamon chips

Here’s a pic from my friend Jessica’s 29th b-day gathering on Saturday. She is the last of our little group that is turning 29, so on comes 30 next for all of us. Yikes! Here she is (she’s the brunette) with Dana.


Oh, and Tasha made these really yummy strawberry cupcakes…she’s been getting into cake making as of late. They were so good!!!


This was the group I went to see the Dark Knight with. I ended up seeing it at the drive in and I don’t know that it’s the best venue to see that movie in. It was soooo dark (the lighting in the film) and I couldn’t see details that would have better clued me into what was going on. I don’t know about you guys, but even though it was a good movie, I find action-packed movies like that hard to follow. Maybe I’m a little slow or lacking on the intellectual front? I don’t know. It just seemed that the plot was going back and forth and it was hard to keep up with all the characters. I will say that Heath Ledger was awesome. He stole the movie. He was so freakin’ creepy and the mannerisms and voice was very eerie. It’s so sad that he’s gone!

And finally, wanted to give a shout out to my friend Crafty Chica for her Innovation Award that she won at CHA Summer! Winning an award of this nature is a huge deal and hopefully a great sign of things to come in the marketplace…I’m tickled for her!

Until tomorrow, Swellions!