Archive for the ‘inspiration’ Category

Beautiful jewelry at my etsy shop, Blue Zebra!

Wednesday, June 22nd, 2011

I opened my etsy store over two years ago. In all that time, I never had even a single sale — until yesterday. It’s kind of ridiculous how excited I am about it! It’s got me sort of fired up, so I thought I’d mention it here — maybe keep the momentum going.

I named my store Blue Zebra because my favorite color is blue, and zebras are my favorite animals. I mostly sell jewelry there, but every now and then I also offer other items for sale. Some of the things I’ve offered are beaded & appliqued postcards, knitted items, small quilts, or even some beading supplies. You’ll have to “favorite” my shop to find out what’s new!

Yesterday I sold a pair of earrings to someone I’ve never met who lives in Massachusetts. I love the internet! The earrings were one of the pairs I posted about last month — the ones I had a dream about. I know it’s really tough to sell jewelry on etsy. The competition is fierce, and there is just so very much of it, so I’m excited that at least I finally sold something.

Here are some photos of items currently available at Blue Zebra:

I use only the highest quality components to create the jewelry I offer for sale. The items pictured above are made with japanese glass seed beads, czech pressed glass and beads from Murano, Italy. All of the items are affordable. Please drop by my etsy shop,  Blue Zebra and see if there is a beautiful piece of jewelry that would be perfect for you or someone you love!

Back to the studio!

Monday, May 9th, 2011

Piles of fabric strips on my worktable . . .

and more piles of fabric strips on my sewing machine bed . . .


. . . have turned into some lovely pieces of art on my design wall!  Inspiration hit me like a ton of bricks this morning, and I simply couldn’t be more thrilled about it.

It’s been a long dry spell, but the quilting mojo seems to have returned, and with it a lifting of the spirits that is most welcomed in my studio. I’m sorry I can’t share more than these small hints:

I feel as if a window has been opened and beautiful, sparkling light is streaming into my studio. What a lovely, delicious, and long-awaited breeze of inspiration!


Dream earrings.

Tuesday, May 3rd, 2011

A few nights ago I had a dream about earrings. In my dream, a young woman was speaking to me from across a large, empty room. I couldn’t hear her clearly. I asked her to come closer so I could hear her better. When she did, I realized that she was not speaking English. The language she was speaking was unfamiliar to me.  It might have been a slavic language, perhaps Croatian, or maybe Russian . . . I wasn’t sure. The young woman was wearing a very simple linen dress, and in her hand she held a glass of champagne. She wore no shoes, and no jewelry, except for a beautiful pair of earrings. They were very simple, very modern-looking, made of tiny seed beads woven into a circular shape. From each circle dangled a single pressed-glass leaf.

When I woke up, I drew a quick sketch of the earrings, and later that same day, I sat down with my beading tray in my lap, to re-create those dream-earrings. This is what they look like:


Aren’t they pretty? I made up a bunch of them, in different colors, and I’ve added them to my etsy shop, bluezebra, along with some other jewelry I’ve created. Please stop by the shop to take a look. Let me know if you like them! Thanks!

Not quilting, something else.

Thursday, April 28th, 2011

I’ve been doing a lot of writing, writing, writing (it’s that secret project thing I can’t talk about … argh!) It’s going well, but not being able to share leaves much to be desired for blog subject matter.

S0, I’ve also been knitting, and at least I can talk about that. I knit mostly in the evenings, in front of the TV. I also knit with my wonderful group of knitting friends, all of whom happen to live in my building. We use the community room to meet  three evenings a week (yes, we really like each other), usually getting together for a couple of hours before our husbands come home and stop by to pick us up on their way home from the train. It’s fun to meet and not have to worry about going out in bad weather, and last night, one of the members even brought along a bottle of wine and some glasses to celebrate a special accomplishment at her workplace. It was fun, but we didn’t get very much knitting done! I’m so lucky to have such a great group of intelligent and interesting women to spend time with on Monday, Wednesday and Friday evenings. Having them here makes me never want to move out of this building, even though I really do miss having a garden. The building has lovely grounds which right now are featuring gorgeous flowering trees, hyacinths, tulips and daffodils . . . but still, it’s a lot different from having your own garden.

I don’t want to put up any photos of my knitting, since this blog is really about my fabric art. But, if you are a knitter, and you are a member of ravelry (over one million strong!) please stop by my projects page to see what I’m working on. My name on ravelry is elizquilt. While you’re there, shout out and say hello, and by all means, friend me!  If you don’t know about ravelry, and you are a knitter, you have no idea how much fun you’re missing. What are you waiting for?  Join up, it’s great fun!

A little bit of sunshine on a stormy day

Wednesday, March 23rd, 2011

Life can be unpredictable, unsettling and sometimes just downright depressing. There are times when it seems that everything that could possibly go wrong — does. Those are the days when a friend can step in and offer a little ray of sunshine.

Yesterday, I received a virtual hug from one friend, and an actual, real-life hug from another. Both were unexpected. Both wonderful women reached out to me in the spirit of friendship. Their support and affection was much appreciated and brightened up my day with a little bit of sunshine.

Today, although the season is officially springtime, I look out my window and see snowflakes. It doesn’t seem at all fair!

So, instead of putting on a light sweater and going outside to lift up my face towards the sun, I’ll don my winter coat and hat and gloves, lift my hood up over my head, and take the dog for a little walk in the fresh air . . . a short walk, because chihuahuas hate the snow.


Monday, March 14th, 2011

I’ve always been a doodler. All the way back in my high school days, I used to doodle while the teacher was lecturing (though I might have been better off if I’d taken notes instead). I’d fill page after page of my notebooks with doodles. Most of them featured spirals, which I loved even back then.  I especially loved doodling during music appreciation class. I remember my doodles becoming very loose and flowing when listening to classical music. That’s still true today. But, when the music becomes something like modern jazz, the doodles  become very different. They take on a short, staccato feeling. Actually, I don’t really listen to modern jazz at all. My musical taste runs much more towards rock and roll than it does towards jazz!

I’ve always found that my creativity is greatly influenced by music, and I try to make that work for me in my studio as often as possible by listening to music that makes me feel good.

I thought it might be fun to share some of the doodles I’ve been creating lately. I tend to spend time doodling in the morning. It helps me to judge what kind of day it’s going to be. Am a feeling creative? Do I need more coffee? These are questions that often can be answered by the quality (or sometimes the quantity) of my doodling. Most of my doodles end up very detailed, like this one . . .

All of my doodles start out simple, like this one:

But then, over time, I add to the blank spaces in each one, and they become more detailed. Some days I like to create new doodles, and other days I’ll spend a half-hour or so filling in a doodle that’s already drawn. This next doodle is a half-completed one, where I’ve only filled in the background so far:

This one, which is completely filled in until there is almost no space at all, is finished.

I think that my doodling looks a lot like my quilting. Notice the feathers? I like feathers, almost as much as I like spirals.

As for my quilting, well, I am doing some of that. In fact, you can see a tiny little piece of what I’m working on in the background of the two photos above. Unfortunately, I can’t show you more. It’s got to stay a secret for the time being.  So . . . . Ssshhhhhh . . .

I hope you enjoyed this little peek into my doodling journal. I’ll post again soon with some more snippets of creativity when I am able!


Sunday, September 12th, 2010

I ought to be thinking about schoolwork, since the new semester officially begins tomorrow.  I shouldn’t be thinking about fabric. But an idea popped, unbidden, into my head, despite all of my best intentions. Before I even realized what I was doing, I had begun pulling fabric for  a new piece. Perhaps if I only work in my studio for a few hours each day, it won’t interfere with my studies? I certainly hope so!

I love these soft, muted colors. They make me think of the earth and the sky. Combining hand-dyed fabrics with batiks and commercial prints in one piece can be a challenge, but I think it’s fun to see all those textures playing together nicely. Maybe I’ll add a few more blues, if I can find just the right ones in my stash. Or maybe I’ll have to paint some new ones . . .

In my mind’s eye I can already envision the soft flowing lines these pretty fabrics want to become. I can’t wait to start cutting into them!