Out of the Kitchen

Slowly but surely the living room studio is taking shape. I need to think a little on how to best sort and store the million little bits that I use, but I have already been able to jump in and get to work without having to haul everything out of a closet or make room for dinner prep. I love it. I highly recommend carving out your own space to make things if you can. Also, it still is cozy, if not cozier. It is now my favorite room to read, drink coffee, and write my blog posts in the morning before I scoot off to work.

The natural light in this room is perfect all day, bright and golden in the morning and softer as the day rolls on. It’s the perfect place for Olive and I to watch the parade of dogs on walks, neighbors driving their riding mowers to the gas station, and the man on the yellow bike who argues with himself all the time.

I think Bee likes it here, me too.

Hatched

I stumbled across this Kelsey Excelsior Mercury 3 x 5 at an antique hop in Carmine, Texas.

I discovered Hatch Show Prints on a 1999 DC to LA road trip with my sister Jessica. We’d spent the prior night in Asheville, NC and were headed to Memphis, along the way we stopped at the Country Music Hall of Fame. While the Nudie Suits were the initial draw for me, it’s the posters that had my full attention. I saw a sign that said the posters had been printed locally, and told Jess we needed to head there ASAP. Jim Sherraden was our tour guide. I was hooked. I could not get the presses, the wood type, and the smell of the ink out of my mind for the rest of the road trip. That road trip and accidental visit to Hatch is what inspired me to learn to print and get a publishing job. True story.

I’ll be firing up Bee this week to print some letterpress cards. Look for a shop update soon.

To learn more about Hatch Show Prints click here

I am O-b-s-e-s-s-e-d with Bunting

Cathe Holden, Inspired Barn

I am hell bunt on draping bunting, garland, or pennants from every shelf and window frame I can get my grubby hands on. Wow, I am inspired by these lovely collage pennants. The wheels are spinning. Steve will be thrilled! He already complains there are tote bags hanging from every door knob. Let’s call them door bunting… but functional.

Look how cool this photo garland is.

Are bunting, and garland the same thing?

bunting [buhn-ting]

noun

  1. a coarse, open fabric of worsted or cotton for flags, signals, etc.
  2. patriotic and festive decorations made from such cloth, or from paper, usually in the form of draperies, wide streamers, etc., in the colors of the national flag.
  3. flags, especially a vessel’s flags, collectively.

garland[gahr-luh nd]

noun

  1. a wreath or festoon of flowers, leaves, or other material, worn for ornament or as an honor or hungon something as a decoration:A garland of laurel was placed on the winner’s head.
  2. a representation of such a wreath or festoon.
  3. a collection of short literary pieces, as poems and ballads; literary miscellany.
  4. Nautical . a band, collar, or grommet, as of rope.

Collage pennant and photo garland ideas found here http://inspiredbarn.com/2019/03/studio-pennant-bunting/

This watermelon bunting I crocheted is a favorite.

These two images show off bunting on the bookcases in my living room studio

Print & Tuck Valentines

Just a little something to make it a wee bit easier to let your family and friends know you care.

Print, fold, and tuck these cheeky valentines into lunches, pockets, and laptop bags. Print on copy paper or on card stock and slip into a 4 Bar size envelope. Be sure to print in landscape mode and at the best quality your home printer can output.

Download printable PDF here.

It’s only been a couple days since we turned off the air conditioning and already I’m consumed with thoughts of apple desserts, printing christmas cards and planning for Thanksgiving.

I found this recipe for Apple Fritter Cake, think about that for a minute…apple. fritter.cake. I’m curious about this recipe, I mean everyone knows the best part of an apple fritter is the crunchy fried peaks and glaze filled valleys. I wonder if being baked rather than fried will make me sad. Only one way to find out, and lord knows I have more than a few potlucks in the near future.

Speaking of potlucks…I have quite a few pieces of Potluck Tableware available at The Owl thru the Holiday Season. For those of you not planning a visit to Elgin in the near future… I will have some available by this weekend when I update my Etsy shop. As always, special orders are welcome.

I’ve recently added a handful of recipes to this blog. They are mostly recipes for potlucks and special occasions that I felt paired nicely with my Potluck Tableware… everything from smoky pimento cheese to my absolute favorite cornbread dressing. I’ll be adding more recipes as the seasons go round and round.

I have plans for a pile of vintage (and not so vintage) tablecloths, but not until I am finished with printing holiday cards. I’ve been printing, folding and packaging and will be selling those shortly.

Inspiration: Stitches as Letterforms

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I have been looking for this very book Hand Lettering for Stitchers everywhere to use as inspiration for hand-lettering projects. The book was first published in Sweden in 1966, and it’s been hard to locate in print. I stumbled across a PDF of it on this odd website that showcases digital archives of personal collections and some books.

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How cool are these?

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Also found on this site was this beautiful Winter Tree Finder. I just the 2 color printing on the cover and inside. Wonderful illustrations, and really…so pretty and sciencey. Yes, sciencey.

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Inspiration: Color

screenshot from design-seeds.com

Obviously the best inspiration for all your color decisions is your own backyard, a forest trail, flower market, local yarn store or city block. But let’s face it, most times you’re stuck in a tall building, nose pressed against a monitor, with little chance of being transported to any of these places anytime soon. Sometimes I “shop” my Instagram for  vintage signs and packaging color ideas. Most often I browse through the well curated color palettes created by Jessica Colaluca of Design Seeds. I find this site an invaluable tool when stumped, and sometimes send links or screenshots of these palettes to clients. It’s much easier to convey color visually than with descriptive words. Whodathunk?

Inspiration: New Packaging

POTLUCK labels

I recently renamed and designed new packaging for my stamped silverware pieces. The new name Potluck, embodies kitcshy, homey, small town, fish fry, church basements and so on. It’s also a nod to the fact that each set is a potluck of patterns, since I never know what I’ll find scouring Ebay and estate sales.

I’ll share a little bit with you about my inspiration for the label art. 

The Spring issue of Gravy featured a story of artist Cedric Smith. I was so drawn to his work. I totally fell in love with his use of color and vintage black & white images. They immediately made me think of cake mix box labels and seed packs. I was especially drawn to this piece.

Fresh-Baked

I knew immediately that I wanted to use this as inspiration for my packaging. I decided on a less distressed appearance, but still wanted a much less than perfect finished look. I created a watercolor background for the type to further convey the made by hand quality of my silverware. While I have been trying my hand at hand-drawn type, I decided I needed these sooner than later, so searched for the right hand-drawn typeface. I just love the thick & thin marker look of these.

The cute pup is actually from a painting my husband did years ago. It’s always been one of my favorite images. I scanned it and created a poster-like black and white version in Illustrator. I’ve been using it as a profile pic and Gravatar off and on for years. The original hangs on my wall at work. “Hi!”

workwall

The flowers were borrowed from one of my favorite dish towels.

dishtowel

Read more about Cedric Smith here. And if you haven’t ever, please do spend a little time to peek around on Southern Foodways Alliance. It’s a wonderful organization.