Friday, January 7, 2011


I hate resolutions. They are only made to be broken and everyone has the same ones; lose weight, make more money, achieve family harmony, etc. I'm curious if there are any statistics about the percentage of resolutions that have already been broken one week into the year?

That said, 2010 was not the greatest year for me, so 2011 holds a lot of promise. Already I have been blessed by an old friend and I am about to register as a full time student in order to finish my Graphic Design degree by May, then my Web Publishing certificate by December.

The blog takes it's name from changes in life. I have always exercised my creative streak in various media, but a decision to leave the corporate world and pursue Graphic Design as truly been...a change of art.

I have much hope for more good things in 2011 and my wish to you is the same. May 2011 be a productive year which takes you in new artistic directions!

Vintage Christmas

Before I get on with the New Year I want to post some art from 2010. A friend is a HUGE Tim Holtz fan and recently had an opportunity to take a shadow box class with him. She came back full of new ideas and put together a Christmas themed shadow box. Hers had lights and all kinds of fun things, but I had some vintage memorabilia that I wanted to use in mine:

So along comes a goody box from my sister, and what do I find inside?

Well, I guess you can say we have similar tastes. AND that great minds think alike!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Altered clothing to the rescue!

It's been awhile, but I thought I would post some photos of altered clothing I have done. I have this "thing" for jackets, particularly denim cowboy type jackets that I can add lace, embroidery, paint, or whatever else grabs my imagination. I am especially a sucker for antique laces, silk ribbons, hand dyed silk and cut velvet.

This first jacket is a white denim that I made as a gift for my sister. It includes swiss laces, hand enbroidered silk ribbons and motifs. One of my favorite shops is Tinseltown Trading ( in New York City. It is REALLY hard to restrain myself when I go there and several of the ribbons in this jacket come from there. The other embroidered trims come from Belgium and Switzerland.

This next jacket is a denim jacket that is trimmed with hand dyed silks, cut silk velvet with a flower motif, hand beaded roses and collar and silk trim. This one belongs to me and I really enjoy wearing it!

Finally, I made a black velvet jacket that is embellished with cut silk velvet that I outlined with beading and that I also trimmed with hand dyed silk velvets on the cuffs. I made this jacket for a presentation at the Peter's Valley benefit. I was SO lucky to be awarded an cash grant to pursue my artwork. Yippee! If you'd like, check out Peter's Valley Craft Center ( The center is a haven for craft artists housed in historic homes throughout the Delaware Water Gap National Recreational Area in Western NJ. There are all kinds of classes throughout the summer months. If you are interested in taking a class, there is housing available and the meals are wonderful!
In the fall of each year Peters Valley sponsors a large fine crafts show/sale. It is quite the event with items for sale from some of the finest artisans in the Northeast.
I just purchased a large men's shirt that I plan to alter and will post when I get it finished.
Lots of Christmas projects underway so I should post again soon!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

And the Raven Said...Nevermore!

Last evening (Mischief Night) a local historical society sponsored a Dramatic Reading of Selected Works by Edgar Allen Poe. Intersperced with snippets about Poe's life story, four very dramatic gentlemen in appropriate dress read The Tell-Tale Heart, Annabelle Lee, The Black Cat, The Raven and one of two other stories. What a fun time and great way to celebrate Halloween!
Living in the country we don't get trick-or-treaters. I miss the days from childhood of planning my costume for weeks in advance. Just HAD to have the best costume! Then it was going out in costume, or later in life seeing all of the "treaters" come to the house in their search for treats. Now, we usually find other ways to celebrate Halloween.

I participated in Christine's Trick-or-Treat swap again this year. What a wonderful swap this is, and I really thank Christine for being such an organized and generous hostess.
Here are pics of the two treats and one trick I contributed:

And here are the wonderful items I received in return:

This Halloween is filled with many more treats than tricks. I hope your's is too!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Assemblage a la Michael de Meng

Awhile back I had the wonderful opportunity to take a seminar with Michael de Meng at Valley Ridge Art Studio ( If you don't know his work, check it out: It was probably one of the best classes I've ever had; Kathy is a terrific hostess and Michael is a generous, entertaining teacher. Here's the piece I made during the class:

I understand that Valley Ridge is not planning any seminars during 2011, but a seminar with Michael de Meng is being planned for New Orleans ( February 16-20. I'm really hoping to go. Michael is inspiring his students to make an altered apothecary kit. In a city like New Orleans the possibilities are endless!

Voila, Or, It's About Time!

About 18 months ago my enabler sister sent me a link she found on eBay for old wood type drawers. Now what, you ask, would I do with type drawers? Some people use them to display curios or create a collage. Old fashioned metal (or wood if you can find them) type pieces look very neat. But they can also be used to store beads and other small pieces.

The drawers were being sold by a man in a nearby town who was retiring from the printing business. So off I treked and purchased all he had for about $1.00 each. They are made of oak and have a terrific worn look to them. While I was at the shop I noticed that he had an oak wooden cabinet with 12 drawers in it. He said it was made about 1890 and he wasn't sure he was going to sell it but he would let me know. Sure enough I got a phone call, so off I went again.

Fast forward 18 months and the cabinet is still sitting in the barn outside unfinished. I was hoping that either my husband or son would volunteer to refinish it for me, but you know how that goes. So I finally got myself in gear and stripped, sanded, stained and finished the cabinet. It is "distressed" because it was used heavily for over 120 years, but I think it looks terrific now. It even has the original cast metal hardware in it.

So what do I use it for? Besides my assemblage and found art work I like to design and create my own jewelry, which tends to follow the assemblage theme also. I have a stash of pieces that I have collected and really need a place to store everything neatly. This cabinet will be perfect and will free up room to neatly store other supplies.

Here's a couple of pics of the final project:

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Creepy Halloween

I love Halloween; it is a hard choice which I like better, Halloween or Christmas. I love decorating even though living in the country means we don't get trick or treaters. Mostly I do the decorating for myself.

There are two swaps I am involved in. One is an Edgar Allan Poe assemblage swap based on one of his short stories. The other swap is Christine Edwards' 2 Treats and 1 Trick swap. So here's what I created for both:
My first "Treat," a skull that is weathered and crackled with sparkle eyes, a Halloween ruff, all on a pedestal.
Then there is my second "Treat," a Witch's Brew kit. I really like this and think I'll have to make one for myself.
My"Trick" is a creepy wreath with giant spiders, scary skulls and a black crow to look over the evil...

For the Edgar Allan Poe swap I created this "book." The idea of the swap was to create a cigar box type of assemblage about the story your partner picked. I picked The Black Cat which coincidentally was the same story my partner picked. Along with the book I included lots of little Halloween treats and I got lots back from my partner. Here's my version of The Black Cat:

And a close-up of the inside:
(PS-sorry for the glare from the flash)
Here's the creation I got from a partner (as well as a box of Ferrar Roche and a Ghiardelli Chocolate caramel bar...YUM!)

Finally, here's my Steampunk Bird. I was inspired when I saw the paper mache form on the Ellen Hutson website. I just KNEW what it would look like. The necklace around her neck are charms from a Steampunk swap I participated in and also some cool charms I had collected.

Wonder what will be up for Christmas?