Coming Clean about "Organic" Personal Care Products

This is a bit off topic for a mainly "design" blog but yet very dear to my heart and the way I live my life. I believe more people need to educate themselves about what we are exposed to in our everyday life, via the foods we eat, the chemicals we use to clean, the products we put on our bodies, our home prodcts (textiles, wood plastics etc). As careful as we may be we will probably never totally eliminate these potential Carcinogens but we can learn more and make better choices as consumers and as people who really CARE. This video is a press release about the presense of 1,4-Dioxane in personal care products. For additional information please also visit the O.C.A. site.


PS Fire Mosaic

As the first portion of Project Spectrum "Fire" comes to a close I have compiled some lovely images of fire inspired photos from my favorites at Flickr. I have realized I truly don't have much "Fire" in my life and am not drawn towards fire colors initially. But due to this project I have slowly tried to introduce more of this element into my home, into my life if only just as small accents. I have made a few purchases of items in Fire colors including a lovely Fuschia Pink silk blouse and some red/orange yarn for an undetermined future knitting project.

1. Psychedelic, 2. Blomkarse - Tropaeolum majus, 3. Bjarnims :), 4. Mighty Mississippi Detail, 5. UTEs picture church door Bad Wildungen, 6. Tulip, 7. By The Numbers, 8. fading autumn leaves, 9. keys, 10. Treasured Trash, 11. Cores de Outono, 12. DSC_0063, 13. pearls in a glass, 14. Love Shack "art", 15. Ethnic Wall Decor, 16. Dressed for Dance, 17. Carrots, 18. celebrating, 19. Untitled, 20. DSC_0091, 21. Untitled, 22. coenogonium implexum on taxodium distichum, spring lake, jackson county, florida 5, 23. Blowing Ghingkhos, 24. yum two, 25. Gazania

Monday's Mosaic Favorites

Pinks, Yellows and Blues signal springs arrival at last!

1. boots, 2. Needle Roll Ups, inside, 3. embrace, 4. goldfish, 5. paint by numbers, 6. little blooms, 7. paper flower, 8. Hard Candy Easter, 9. old Moxie bottle


PurpleCrocus=Vernal Equinox

Happy Spring, so glad it's finally here!


Slainte! Green Fav's~

I'm sorry this is a day late and I hope you all had a cheerful & green St. Patty's Day. Unfortunately we were spending the day with family at my husband's Grandmothers funeral. It was such a different way to celebrate St. Patty's but since the family is Catholic it was a fitting tribute to her life.

1. lovely_mojave, 2. 08.05.06, 3. overexposed, 4. Blue + Yellow = Green, 5. Road Trip Crafts, 6. chrysothrix chlorina arabia mountain davidson-arabia mountain nature preserve dekalb co ga 1, 7. green week, 4, 8. 5 green eggs, 9. wip- green man, 10. i know what color envy is, 11. rose, 12. grassy stairs, 13. New Moon, 14. All Green, 15. Bee, 16. oxalis violacea dawson forest wildlife management area dawson co ga 2


Every Year I know that Spring is around the corner when the DC Environmental Film Festival rolls into town. I look forward to this event because it means an excuse to break free of the winter doldrums and get on the Metro to head downtown for various films that are played all around the city. The festival officially began on March 11Th and runs through the 22Nd this year. I have marked my calendar with at least 8 films I want to see and I usually group them together so I can make a day of it going to various venues. I've seen so many fascinating films at this festival over the past few years. Weather you can or can't make it at least look through the website at the increasing number of films debuting and see if you can't find one or two that spark your interest like this one below (which unfortunately I won't be able to make).

The Queen of Trees (UK, 2005)


Jewelry Artists I love~

I've stumbled across a couple of amazing Jewelry artists recently. There are so many artists and designers working across mediums and I am always drawn to metal and fibers together, or fibers as jewelry/metals as clothing. I love the juxtaposition of these materials but it seems that neither of these designers uses the tradtional material of Metals in their jewelry.

Tanvi Kant creates jewelry 'Inspired by the hand-stitched hem of my mother’s silk sari I began by using yarns unpicked from reclaimed textiles to sew around strips torn from the same fabrics...'
I love that these pieces incorporate a sense of culture, history and hand and are ethical in their reuse of materials.

Yoko Izawa Envelopes ambiguous and unknow base shapes within etherial nets of fiber. These forms remind me of the traditional textile dyeing process of shibori in that the fabric has some object imbedded within it. But rather than using forms to create shapes within fabric Yoko uses the fibers to wrap the form so that it becomes it's own object of mystery.

WIP Knitting

I've got several knitting projects going right now including some simple knit Moss stitch Cotton Face cloths (Washcloths) and my first pair of adult socks (Basic Ann Norling Pattern) in a medium brown yarn~Cascade Fixation.

March of the tools~Kitchen

Any good foodie knows that great tools make a world of difference in preparation of great foods. Although I could show my knives, food processor or other "power tools" of the kitchen, some of my favorites though are my wooden spoons and spatulas. Here are a few.


Monday Mosaic Favorites~ Signs of Spring

Some of this weeks Favorites from Flickr~These definately reflect Spring!
1. Measuring tape...absolutely random [34:366, 26.02.2008], 2. By The Numbers, 3. mix, 4. bouquet, 5. Sky on Fire, 6. plastic, 7. embrace, 8. Untitled, 9. Down to earth, 10. Bottle Cap Bag, 11. IMG_3890, 12. katuray at bagbagkong, 13. Winterberries II, 14. whisking, 15. pencil roll, 16. "Would you hold my hand?"

Created with fd's Flickr Toys.

Collaborative Block Layers~Round 2

Here are the 12 blocks I've sent out to my partners for Round 2 of the Collaborative Block Layers Project I'm hosting and participating in. Each block will have a total of 5 layers, each layer being completed by different artitst as we shuffle blocks and rotate each rounds. Each artits participating will end up with 12 4" blocks to keep. The project has been very fun so far, seeing the materials each person is using and how others react to the materials and colors. I am enjoying the process of collaboration and it has me looking at materials all around me differently.
1. RedLayer2, 2. RedBlueLayer2-B, 3. WhiteBlueLayer2, 4. BrownLayer2-B, 5. BlueLayer2-B, 6. PurlpeLayer2-B, 7. GoldOrangeLayer2, 8. WhiteLayer2, 9. BlueLayer2, 10. TealLayer2, 11. PurlpeLayer2, 12. RedLayer2-B


More ACC Roundup

You probably thought I forgot... I've been sick and various other things have popped up but as promised I wanted to wrap up the highlights of what I found at the ACC show in Baltimore. This is by no means comprehensive and the ACC website has great photo's of exhibitors work by category (Wearable, Jewelry, Ceramics, Wood etc). A few things just had to come home with me, I'll start with those artists.

A pair of earrings similar to these from Rina Young . This shape (simple outline of a leaf) was EVERYWHERE!

This"Piccolo" clutch by Wendy Stevens ended up being my big splurge of the day. I needed an evening bag and if this isn't the modern woman's I don't know what would be!

Elyse Allen's fingerless gloves were being sported all over the show and they were our last stop of the day. I got a pair and so did my mom. I went for the studded version and my mom went for the swarovski crystal version, both very fashionable and fun to wear!

Her work has been featured in various magazines such as Selvedge (Issue #13), Fiberarts (Sept/Oct '04), Nylon, Vogue Knitting and others. She started as a weaver and has recently left her position of full time Textile professor at RISD to pursue her business, she is also a very nice person, very sweet!

And a pair of Bee earrings similar to these by Thomas Mann were an early (8 months!) birthday gift from my mom.

The rest didn't make it home with me this year but caught my eye!
This beautiful knotted vessel is by Joh Ricci~Earthwalk Studio
John Petrey's whimsical sculptures use all sorts of found objects.
Hats and scarves are a couple of the items by Elisabethan who makes almost all of their fashionable goods from recycled/reclaimed fabrics (old clothes etc). So cute and no guilt!
Mixed media artists Allyn Cantor

A few other things that I don't have photo's of are worth mentioning such as the felt and silver jewelry by Michele Friedman .
A beautiful gold rayon knit scarf by Younger Knits.
Silk jackets by Joyce Fogle

I'll try to post the same sort of round up for the upcoming Smithsonian Craft Show in Mid April.

March of the Tools~Behind the scenes @ Work

In keeping with the March of the Tools entries this one is dedicated to the tools I use everyday for my job. This photo illustrates the key tools I use for my job. Included in the photo are:
2)Wacom Tablet
4)Speakers-For listening to Podcasts, music or books on tape while I work.
5)Measure Master Calculator-Essential and makes quick conversions from feet to Inches or to Metric.
6)Glasses-To see all the better with.
7)Architects Scale Ruler
8)Yarn Poms-To choose colors for the designs and to better illustrate the real color rather than on screen representation of.


Project Spectrum Fire ATC's

Here are my two completed Project Spectrum ATC's that were sent out yesterday for a Swap Bot Swap. They were so much fun to create. As I have been trying to focus on the colors related to the first element "Fire" (Reds, Oranges and Pinks) I have discovered that I don't have nearly enough of this element in my everyday surroundings. It's strange that I have discovered the colors I gravitate towards are more water and earth bound, even air. As I pondered this I think that it's partially due to my own Fiery nature. I'm a Scorpio and have a "Fiery" disposition at times. I'm very passionate and perhaps I don't need to add a lot of fire in my surroundings because of this. But, I think I need touches of it here and there especially in winter, a bit more warmth can't hurt as long as it's balanced.


Island Canvas

~Garden Tote in Forest Green and Rust~Spring's right around the corner!

A good friend owns a wonderful company called Island Canvas which has been in business now for over 25 years. The company is based in New England and all the bags are made in the US. These bags are totally customizable with your choice of sizes, pocket options, over 25 colors colors and many styles of Handbags and totes to choose from.

~Large Zippered Tote in Black and Burgundy

~Medium Copley Handbag~Olive Green

Monograming is also available and she has a cute line of decorative fabric bags too under "Island Canvas Too".

March of the Tools

Yesterday while parusing through my Flickr contact's new photo's I came across the lovely banner (to the right) and had to follow through to see what it was all about. Heather Bailey came up with the clever idea of featuring all those wonderful tools we use on a daily basis to make our lives more fun and hopefully in many cases easier. She is a very talented lady so check her out if you are not already familiar with her. There is also a new corresponding March of the Tools Flickr Group. So for the remainder of March I'll be featuring some of the fun tools I use for crafting, cooking and other areas of my life. The first two here are my new/old additions to my tool collection. The Underwood Typewriter was a recent steal for $1 that I found at the local Senior center. I have used it but the cap's lock doesn't work and the ribbon is not the right size so it takes a lot of fumbling about. I will literally bang out a few more pages for posterity before I disassemble it for the keys and other interesting parts.

The Antique Singer came to me via my Mother in Law recently and I have not got it up and running yet but once I get the replacement belt I fully plan to do so. I believe it will be a joy to use such a simple and well designed tool.


Yes We Can-Barack Obama Music Video

I seem to have a theme of HOPE in the Video's I've now posted.