Sunday, November 29, 2009

New Treasury and a Reminder

Here's a reminder of the specials currently offered in my Etsy shop:

Today and tomorrow: free domestic shipping and free worldwide shipping (with orders over $50.00) for everything in my shop.

Until December 25: ALL Christmas décor items are already marked for free standard shipping.

For my blog readers: until December 15, 20% off any order over $12.00 from my entire shop, on top of the free shipping offers above. In the notes to seller, please be sure to enter “BLOG READER” so I know and can issue the refund through Paypal.

And here's the latest treasury I'm appearing in. The colors in this one are absolutely striking - silver and blue is such a beautiful combination. Included is one of my silver and blue scented potpourri wreaths (see below). The artist who created the treasury is new to me. He's a jewelry artist working in precious metals and his work is very lovely. Take a look when you have a chance.

A few of my favorites.
Created by: mct43 Exp: 3 days





Friday, November 27, 2009

New Treasury

Stephanie of stefny68 has once again created a lovely treasury and included my Christmas photo card "White Star Poinsettia."  That poinsettia was the largest and most beautiful I had ever seen so I had to capture it in a photo.  And this copy of the treasury doesn't do it justice; click on the actual one and see it in all its glory! 

A few of my favorites.
Created by: stefny68 Exp: 2 days
 

 
 



Thursday, November 26, 2009

A month of thankfulness - especially today, my family


(A handmade Christmas 2008 gift from my artist sister for my family photo wall)

My mother and father both were the oldest of 7 children. I am the fifth child of 9: five girls, 4 boys (one brother is deceased). My parents have been gone for many years.  Although I do not have children of my own, I love being “Auntie Felicia” to 14 nieces and nephews (sadly, one nephew and one niece deceased) and 30 great-nieces and nephews. And that's just the immediate family!


Yep, that's me!


I love my huge family. But lest you think we are a homogenous, talk-every-day kind of family, we’re not. We’re a diverse collection of independent beings, and although we share a common upbringing, some of us are as different from each other as we can be.

Having a [large] family is like having a
bowling alley installed in your brain.
- Martin Mull


Our political beliefs range from ultra-conservative to extreme left. Our religious beliefs cover the spectrum from born-again to religious indifference. Our food tastes range from meat-and-potatoes to vegetarian. Most still live close to home in the area where we grew up, but some are gone to other states. Some are very traditional, others fiercely independent and progressive. Our sibling horoscope signs are volatile: two Aries, two Scorpios, two Leos, one Virgo and one Capricorn. Some are homebodies, others are community activists. Some love Las Vegas and gambling, I hate it (even though I had to go there a lot during my previous career).

(In case you’re wondering, I’m an Aries, very independent, and as the quintessential middle child, I usually find myself in the middle, but leaning left.)

So much of what is best in us is bound up in our love of family,
that it remains the measure of our stability

because it measures our sense of loyalty.
- Haniel Long


Here’s why I’m most thankful for my family:

  • In spite of our differences, we all still talk to each other. There’s never been a time when anyone severed themselves completely from the family, and when I meet people who haven’t talked to their siblings in years I feel very sorry for them.
  • In times of need, there’s no question that we will “circle the wagons.” Each one of us has had our share of pain and suffering and sorrow, and that is when I see the best in my family.
  • We still hold tight to a few treasured family traditions, especially at Christmas, and I’ll write about a few of those next month.
  • Instead of complaining about their boring old aunts and uncles, the “young’uns” enjoy their time with the extended family and look forward to those times when we get together. Somehow we transcend the generation gap quite well.
That is the best – to laugh with someone because
 you both think the same things are funny. – Gloria Vanderbilt

And the best family thing I’m thankful for?
  • We are all very funny and irreverent and we all laugh A LOT together. Most of the humor is the you-had-to-be-there kind, where we feed off of each other and laugh til our stomachs hurt. Although when I had my siblings write childhood stories about each other for the annual family calendar (more about that next month too) it was bloody hilarious!!
  • Did I mention that we are all very talented?


And so for Thanksgiving we will all gather together at …. the bar. Seriously! LOL

You see, one nephew and his wife own two brew pubs, one in Ann Arbor, MI, and another in Ypsilanti, MI.  I still have fond memories of how we all helped clean up, fix up, scrub up the first pub to get ready for their opening. For quite a few years now they have hosted a Thanksgiving dinner at Arbor Brewing Company for whoever in the family can make it. I’m so grateful to them for having so generously hosted for so long.  (If you're ever in the neighborhood, stop in and tell Matt and Rene their Auntie loves them!)
***

My wish for you this Thanksgiving: I hope you find yourself surrounded by a loving family and that you are overwhelmed with thankfulness for the blessing that is “family.” I know I will.


So it goes, I guess. People show up out of nowhere and a whole life gets built up around them and through them, the pieces of time and adventures you share fitting in a kind of mosaic that evolves into some near-perfect shape that stays with you … And you know you didn’t get rich, not in the way you expected, but you got lucky.
-Randall Osborne

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

New Treasury

I'm in a new fun treasury that features one of my vintage Christmas wooden blocks.  The treasury was created by localcolorist, who creates lovely peace cranes in every color.

Created by: localcolorist Exp: 2 days


Tuesday, November 24, 2009

WE HAVE A WINNER!!

The double giveaway and interview I shared with Stephanie of stefny68 on her blog ended today. It has been lots of fun working with Stephanie and introducing you to the fabulous artwork in her Etsy shop. Stephanie is also choosing a winner on her blog today for one of my vintage Christmas blocks.


So without further ado, the winner of Stephanie's gorgeous notecards is:

 Mana Moon Studios






Congratulations!  Stephanie will be contacting you to arrange for shipment of your notecards.

And get on over to Stephanie's blog to see if you've won my Christmas block!

Thanks to everyone who participated, and my sincere wishes for a warm and wonderful Thanksgiving Day.

A month of thankfulness – my thanks to my readers


We are now heading full steam into the crazy Holly-Days. And I have some special offers for all of you starting this Friday.

Fasten your seat belts - here we go!


From Black Friday through Cyber Monday I’m offering free domestic shipping and free worldwide shipping (with orders over $50.00) for everything in my shop. If the item you want is not already listed as free shipping, a refund will be issued through Paypal.






ALL Christmas décor items are already marked for free standard shipping until December 25.





And finally, a special thank you to all of my blog readers:

From now until December 15, take 20% off any order over $12.00 from my entire shop, on top of the free shipping offers above. In the notes to seller, please be sure to enter “BLOG READER” so I know and can issue the refund through Paypal.




Enjoy!!

Monday, November 23, 2009

A Reminder

You have just until Wednesday morning to be entered in the double giveaway:

Stephanie's gorgeous note cards
http://feliciakramer.blogspot.com/2009/11/double-giveaway.html

My vintage wooden block:

http://dragonflydegignstudios.blogspot.com/2009/11/felicia-kramer-is-in-house-and-were.html

Do it now and get a jump on holiday gifts and home decor.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

A Month of Thankfulness - I'm being followed

Here, in no particular order, are some artists who follow my blog and who I have come to know as team members from VAST, DSG, or Thursday Sweet Treat.  As my thanks during this month of thankfulness I thought I would feature one of their holiday offerings.  There's lots more where that came from so stop in to their shops when you have a minute.  And see my shop announcement at the end of this listing.

















And as a reminder, here's a vignette of some of the Christmas items available in my shop. ALL Christmas items are available with free standard domestic shipping until December 25.  And I'll be partipating next week for the Black Friday Cyber Monday sale from 11/27 to 11/30 so everything in my shop will be available with free domestic shipping.  See my shop announcement for details http://www.etsy.com/shop/anotherbrightidea.  I'm going to have a special offer for readers of my blog next week. Stay tuned. 



Friday, November 20, 2009

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

New Treasury

I'm in a Treasury by Elizabeth Graf. Elizabeth was one of the artists in my first Month of Thankfulness post.  She does such a great job with these treasuries. To get the full effect go to the site; this small copy doesn't do justice to the colors in this collection.


Created by: ElizabethGraf Exp: 3 days


My Robin's Egg Blue Pinecone Wreath is included. I love the way this wreath turned out and I'm surprised it hasn't sold yet because it has quite a few views.



DOUBLE GIVEAWAY!!



Today I’m in the studio with Stephanie Corder of stefny68. I came to know Stephanie because she was kind enough to include me in many of the Etsy Treasuries she created. She does a wonderful job curating them!

When I visited her shop I was blown away with her talent and wanted to know more about her. So we decided to interview each other and do a double giveaway! Stephanie is featuring me on her blog today as well at http://dragonflydegignstudios.blogspot.com/2009/11/felicia-kramer-is-in-house-and-were.html

I’m offering your choice of one of the adorable Christmas vintage wooden blocks I have listed.

But before I tell you what she is offering as her giveaway, pour a cup of coffee or tea, sit back and enjoy my visit with Stephanie, a very talented and energetic artist.

FK: Good morning, Stephanie – what gets you started in the morning?

I’m a caffeine freak all the way - love my French roast blend, and it’s not always wise to try to talk to me before I’ve had it!

FK: Me too! So pour yourself a cup of coffee and tell us about your shop and blog.

My Etsy shop is http://www.etsy.com/shop/stefny68  and you can find me on my blog at http://dragonflydegignstudios.blogspot.com/.  I just became active on Etsy in the last several months, and started my blog in September. I’ve been working hard to make both a success!



FK: Tell me about your family. Where do you live? Did you grow up there?

I’m from Decatur, GA and have lived there all my life except for seven years when my family relocated to the Virgin Islands. My husband and I have three children-Caroline 15, Emmy 14, and Garrett who is 10. We also have four Caribbean cats that are fascinated by squirrels.

FK: Squirrels! Don’t get me started! I have the fattest squirrels in the world in my backyard because they eat all the birdseed. Talk to me about your etsy shop.

I opened my shop last February, but didn’t start listing work until July. My shop has mostly acrylic paintings, altered books and card reproductions of my work. I LOVE painting, it is my first passion as an artist! My second passion is gardening, so I feel lucky to be able to combine the two in my work!



FK: Your floral paintings are to die for! How long have you been an artist? Are you formally trained or self-taught?

I’ve wanted to be an artist since I was 4, and I had private lessons until I went to college at Savannah College of Art & Design where I received a BFA degree in illustration.

FK: Do you exhibit elsewhere besides online?

I do bi-annual Home and Studio shows, and am slowly starting to become involved in more shows.



FK: Where do you go for inspiration? Where’s your “quiet place” when you need to get away from the studio – somewhere you go to rest, refresh, meditate?

My garden is my biggest inspiration, in every season, there is always something new to see and get ideas for paintings from. It’s also my favorite place to renew my spirit.

FK: Well, we are totally alike when it comes to using our gardens in that way. What part of being an artist is the most gratifying for you and what do you dislike the most?

I love the whole process of creating, from the time I get the idea for my next painting, the point where the painting isn’t working and I hate it….(well, maybe I don’t love THAT part, but it is part of the process!) to the point where it all works out and I now have a favorite piece. And each piece is my favorite when I’ve just finished them!

FK: What do you do when you’re not being an artist?

I enjoy spending time with my family, I’m lucky enough to have my parents and my brother here. My two younger kids and I love roller coasters, so we enjoy going to theme parks. I love going to the mountains, especially in the fall, reading; I always have a book I’m in the middle of at my bedside, and gardening, cooking, and bird watching are also favorites of mine.



FK: I’m totally jealous of that – I love roller coasters but because of my back issues I’m forbidden to ride them! So enjoy them for me.

FK: Finally, Stephanie, tell us something that most people – maybe even your family – don’t know about you.

One of the reasons I love Etsy, is that I can promote myself without having to be outgoing. Once I feel comfortable is a situation, I’m pretty outgoing, but there’s always a part of me that’s very shy and self conscious.

FK: I can understand that. Thanks for allowing me to visit with you!

Thank you for having me, it’s been a pleasure!

Now, for the giveaway:

Your choice of SIX note cards from Stephanie's shop.  Here's one sample:



Some of Stephanie's note cards are reproductions of her paintings and they are gorgeous. Go here to see more examples of her note cards and to see the rest of her shop.  I guarantee you will fall in love with her paintings.

All you have to do to be entered in the drawing is make a comment to this post. That’s all!  A name will be drawn from all the comments by random number generator AFTER NOON NEXT WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 25. That’s the day before Thanksgiving and, yes, this giveaway is just for one week. It is open to anyone, domestic and worldwide, with free shipping. So don't wait.

And you can see my feature and giveaway at Stephanie’s blog: http://dragonflydegignstudios.blogspot.com/2009/11/felicia-kramer-is-in-house-and-were.html.   I'm offering your choice of one of my vintage blocks.



Thank you for a nice visit, Stephanie, and for that lovely giveaway!




Monday, November 16, 2009

Two New Treasuries!

I'm in two new treasuries today. I love this first one, because that's the kind of Christmas I love - vintage, old fashioned. This treasury was created by tinsandtreasures and if you love an old fashioned Christmas you will love her shop.  It is absolutely delightful!

A few of my favorites from dsg and...
Created by: tinsandtreasures Exp: 2 days


 
 It features one of my vintage-style wooden blocks. I love these blocks!


 

The second Treasury was created by cjgrand, a newly discovered artist for me, thanks to this Treasury. She creates steampunk jewelry and I really love a lot of her pieces.  Take a look - it's worth a visit.  AND take a look at the Treasury - the colors are absolutely fabulous!
A few of my favorites
Created by: cjgrand Exp: 2 days


I must admit the colors in my digital print fit right in with this Treasury.  I also use this as my avatar on Etsy.  (Get it? Another bright idea?? Tee-hee.)





Big thank you to both of you!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

A Month of Thankfulness and Kreativ Blogger

I was just nominated for the Kreativ Blogger award by Cindi at http://clayitagain.blogspot.com/.  As luck would have it, I was in the middle of preparing my next Month of Thankfulness post to thank some of my followers. So I decided to combine the two posts. First, the award.

The rules for accepting this award are:
1) Copy the award and post it on your blog.
2) Thank the person that gave it to you and link to their blog.
3) Write 7 things about yourself we don't know.
4) Choose 7 other bloggers to pass the award to.
5) Link to those 7 other bloggers.
6) Notify your 7 bloggers.



OK, first, thank you for the award, Cindi, and thank you for being one of my followers. Cindi's etsy shop is http://www.etsy.com/shop/clayitagain.  She has posted some adorable Christmas ornaments! Check this out:


Here's seven things about me:

1. I love to surprise friends and family with handmade gifts. (This thrills me even more than getting gifts – unless they are also handmade.)
2. I LOVE Christmas. (Not plastic Santas or crazed shopping, but vintage Dickens, singing carols, celebrating family traditions.)
3. If I had to eat only one kind of food for the rest of my life: bread. (And my waistline is a visible monument to that.)
4. I don’t very much like the phrase “it’s good enough” – it implies you’ve done less than your best. (Can't say I've never said it, but most often I’m a bit of perfectionist.)
5. When they first appeared, I said the Beatles were just a fad. (I make myself laugh out loud with this one!)
6. I’ve been nicknamed “mad dog.” (When I get my teeth into something I’m quite stubborn and determined.)
7. I left my heart in San Francisco. (Really.)

Now, here's the seven bloggers I choose for this award. All of them are followers of my blog, all of them are incredible artists, and I follow all of their very interesting and artistic blogs. I guess we are a mutual admiration society! The tough part about picking a representative piece of artwork from their shops is choosing just one. So don't just go by what I choose; visit their shop or blog and be blown away!

Stefny68 Stephanie does the most gorgeous paintings, curates the most wonderful treasuries, and recently expanded her talents to a lovely blog: http://dragonflydegignstudios.blogspot.com/.  Here's one of her floral paintings:





Alphabuttonpusher's artwork IS her blog: http://pushbuttonalpha.blogspot.com/.  What an incredible eye she has in putting art and words together! When I first saw her blog it was such a visual and literary treat that I wanted to shut down my blog, go sit in the corner and suck my thumb - hers is that good.

meherio68 has a bilingual blog - http://lebarduvent.blogspot.com/ - she lives in France. I try to practice my French, but it's hopeless. My French lessons and my last trip to Paris were much too long ago. I love this ring:




Stacey from Artsnark has been one of my most loyal followers and we once did a double giveaway with our blogs.  Her blog - http://artsnark.blogspot.com/ - is always interesting, and she sponsors some great giveaways. Don't know how she manages all her time - she's an Energizer bunny!  This piece is very recognizable as hers - she uses part of it for her Etsy avatar. I love it and never tire of seeing it.




Lynne and I also did a succesful double giveaway which was great fun! Her blog is http://artbylmr.blogspot.com/ and her etsy shop is artbylmr.  She has these adorable Christmas coasters for the holidays:




Jean Levert Hood's, http://jeanleverthood.blogspot.com/, calls herself a "Texas Hill Country Painter" and her blog takes me to a rustic world I don't know much about being a city kid, but I sure enjoy visiting.  Her etsy shop is full of simply breath-taking paintings and watercolors.




Cheri's blog is http://art2artcolorado.blogspot.com/.  Her Etsy shop,  art2artcolorado, is a total visual delight for me. I'm particularly envious of her digital artwork, because I wish mine were as polished and wonderful.  See what I mean?




So there you have it.  My thankfulness to all of you for your inspiration and support!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

A Month of Thankfulness - in the Garden

Michigan weather has been all over the map this year - what a roller coaster!  As a result, my garden was a roller coaster too - some perennials not blooming, slimy slug infestations, rampant blackspot on my roses.

Today is scheduled to be an above-60 degrees sunny day, probably the last for the year.  So thank you God for these few days of nice weather so I can clean up and put my garden to bed. 

I am so thankful that I have my little flower garden - it's just big enough to keep me happy but small enough that I can (almost) handle it by myself.  And I'm thankful that I get a new start in the garden every year!

So ... goodnight, roses. Goodnight, dogwood. Goodnight, garden. Better luck next year.





Thursday, November 12, 2009

A Month of Thankfulness



This is the month of Thanksgiving, so it’s the perfect time for thankfulness.

I have written before about the online artist community, something I never really thought about when I set up my shop on Etsy. But I have learned since that it’s such a valuable resource – for inspiration, for information sharing and for good old-fashioned moral support. And in just over a year into my online experience, I have come to rely on that inspiration, knowledge and support from the online community. 

I’m also so impressed with how many “extra-curricular” activities some artists take on. Makes me wonder how they have time to do the laundry and grocery shopping much less spend hours making art!

So for a start, here’s a few artists I’m thankful for - and not incidentally, I love their art!


First up is ELIZABETH GRAF.  Elizabeth is my team member on Design Style Guide team and the Visual Arts Street Team (VAST). I call her the Treasury Queen because she does such a beautiful job curating Etsy Treasuries featuring team members to give them some additional exposure.

In addition, Elizabeth is a valuable member to both her teams and Etsy because of the many services and assistance she provides that I wonder how she ever has time to do any painting! But paint she does, and here’s some of my favorites.

I love all things Christmas:




Here's two of her Plumeria paintings:






***

DEREK COLLINS, also a team member on VAST and a follower of my blog, is another artist who has so much going on it’s amazing that he has time to paint. He has not one two Etsy shops – derekcollins and watercolorsbyderek - and I know he does a lot of craft shows and exhibitions.

Derek also has two very informative blogs that I follow:   A Painting Each Day  and  Derek Talks Art/ Painting Lessons, How to.
And Derek is always ready to answer questions and provide practical information and instructions for other artists on our team blogs. Here’s one of the many gorgeous acrylic paintings he does:




I have to admit I am partial to his watercolors.


This is an example of a new style/technique that he posted recently, where he carries the painting on to the mat. I love this one in particular:


***

CHRISTINE BURGESS is a follower of my blog and a Design Style Guide team member. Her shop is memoriesinmosaics and she has a blog as well: http://www.cbcrafter.blogspot.com/. Her mosaics are not only uniquely beautiful but practical as well – frames, mirrors, plant wall hangers. I love how she incorporates other dimensional objects into her pieces, like these:










***

I have to confess – I love jewelry and I have quite a lot. But – I seldom wear what I have. Go figure! I can’t explain it, but besides tiny earring posts and a watch for everyday wear, only an occasion that requires dress-up will prompt a search through the jewelry box for me.

JODI HORGAN was one of the first followers of my blog. We originally became acquainted through the Thursday Sweet Treat blog where we both participate in the weekly art challenge.  Her Etsy shop is jodihorgan and she has a blog as well: http://jodihorgan.blogspot.com/.  Her beading is so beautifully detailed, so exquisite – I love looking at it.












***
So my special thanks to all of you for your beautiful work, for your support for me and my blog, for the extra special things you do for the online community, and for helping me keep my head above water during this amazing artistic adventure we’re all on.

I’ll be doing more thankfulness features during November - stay tuned!



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