Halloween, Paper & Pens

Paper, Alice, & Halloween

Hello friends! We all have our little idiosyncrasies that make us unique individuals; different from each other in lovable, often funny ways. One of my quirks is that I LOVE paper. This coming from someone who also finds great contentment creating on a computer seems incompatible, but truth is, given the choice between Kindle or holding a book in my hands & turning the pages, I’ll take the latter. Then there’s all the ephemera floating about the world that fascinates me: old letters, tickets from events, tickets needed for planes, trains, & carnival rides, receipts from the candy shop, the Five & Ten, Harrod’s in London, the butcher, the baker, the candlestick maker. Let’s not forget recipes that tell family stories for generations. Newspapers, magazines, brochures, pamphlets, manuscripts, & books….lots & lots of books are just a few of the every day pieces of paper that bring the past into the now.

I may be wrong on this assumption, but it seems to me paper is making something of a resurgence as the dangers of plastic becomes ever more obvious. With great shame, I admit that I used bottled water at home. I dislike the metallic taste of the water from the well so I turned to the most convenient way to drink water, but those pesky bottles create so much trash. I recycled but geez I needed to do it way too often. I’m trying out a purifier on the faucet & using a Brita filter & pitcher. Then there’s the mega giants trying to be more earth-friendly. McDonald’s got rid of styrofoam a while back & Starbucks is getting rid of plastic straws, however, I’m not sure if what they’re replacing the straws with is any better. I kind of like those cute little paper straws…don’t you? Using paper (wood) indiscriminately is not wise, but trees are a renewable source that the earth needs. *Jumping down from soapbox*

In the past paper was used for decorating, for playthings, for entertainment, as well for writing & printing the necessary bits of life. I stumbled across a charming book, The Good Crow’s Happy Shop by Patten Beard

Good Crow letter

that offered ideas for children in 1917 to have fun using paper; making furniture, paper dolls, scrapbooks, Valentine’s May baskets, & more. Winston heard an audible sigh come from me while looking at the sweet little projects. It makes me wonder if just maybe the children of today could benefit from moving away from the screen & use a pair of scissors for a few minutes each day instead of staring at flashing colors, words, & images in rapid succession. Perhaps I’m entering my second childhood (not really because I’ve always been a bit childish & never stopped being curious) but I think I’m going to give making doll furniture from heavy paper a go.

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Photograph from 1917 book The Good Crow’s Happy Shop by Patten Beard.

A letter to Jimsi, a little girl, from Caw Caw the good crow. Another reason why I love old letters, the eloquent language & beautiful handwriting.

Letter from Caw Caw

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I’m into Halloween getting ready for September  & October.  The Fright Night paper pack is listed & I’ve moved on to creating tags. Wicked Wonderland is a twist on Alice in Wonderland & I’m having fun spinning the characters into something Halloweenish.

Blog Sneak Peek copy

The tags are a work in progress & definitely need more work with texture & tweaking, but you get the idea where I’m headed with these whimsical tags. The images used were those of John Tenniel, the original illustrator of Alice’s Adventures Through Wonderland written by Lewis Carrol.  The book was published in 1865 & now part of the public domain. Did you know Beatrix Potter drew 5 Alice illustrations, but none were ever used in a book.  All together there are 70 different illustrators of the classic. That’s pretty darn amazing. You can read about the illustrators of Alice in Wonderland from 1899 – 1929 HERE.

attwell alice
Charming illustration of Alice & the White Rabbit by Mabel Lucie Attwell (1910)

I wonder why I have the urge to watch all my favorite Halloween movies: Hocus Pocus, The Legend of Sleepy Hollow with Johnny Depp, The Addams Family, Practical Magic, The Witches of Eastwick, Beetlejuice, The Corpse Bride, It’s the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown…

One last tidbit before I fly off on my broomstick…you can find The Good Crows Happy Shop & loads of classic books & illustrations in the public domain at www.gutenberg.org.

With that I leave you until next time.  Have a wonderful day!

My Printed Signature

 

 

Home, Studio on the Corner Etsy Shop

Transformation

How is your day going thus far? It’s cloudy & humid here in nw Ohio & I am so over summer & so ready for fall. BUT…before autumn rushes through with fresh breezes, pumpkin spice coffees, & colorful leaves dropping,  I need to transform what previously was what I called my “space” into a family room/studio. So let me tell you about. . .

Blog Title My Home

As every home I’ve ever lived in…it rests on a corner & is painted a deep red with cream trim. It began as a gun shop, maybe in the 1930s, when tiny villages were vibrant places with businesses & even a small school. It belonged to a couple who I cared deeply for & they are the ones who transformed the space into a charming little house for 2. My daughter, grandson, & I moved in 7 years ago & now it’s Winston, Miss Adventure & me makes three.

The house is indeed small, but the couple were forward thinking adding pull-outs in the 1970s to double the cupboard space in the tiny kitchen. An entire wall in the living room is a bookcase with adjustable shelves.

A very simple rough layout of my home to give you an idea of the space that needs a transformation. . .

House layout

Taber Quote

It’s an L-shape with NINE windows inside deep sills that I absolutely love, love, love. So much natural light bathes the room & it is my favorite place in the house. I can sit at my computer & look out the window any time of year & see squirrels chasing each other across thick branches & birds arguing over daily events. Spring brings the most heavenly fragrance from a lilac growing against one of the windows. From these windows watching it snow becomes a soft & magical time.  This is so close to an ideal room except….how to blend a studio with a family room.

I didn’t do a very good job blending bedroom & studio but I’d like to do a better job with family room & studio.  Any ideas?

Transformation Title Blog

Room Collage

As you can see…I’m something of a plain jane with white woodwork & a beige sort of wall painted in Dried Hydrangea (BTW…this color is the color I am using throughout the house cuz I like it…ALOT!) I am so open to suggestions on how to make this room work. Oh & yes that is an old, beautiful sewing machine sitting in the back corner. I have loads of old things from glass apothecary jars to canning jars to pretty dishes. A Hoosier cabinet from the turn of the century sits against another wall. I did not take a photo of it because…well…it’s a mess. What do you think of storing craft supplies in the old cupboard? It could use some TLC. Pops of color are sorely needed, but I have a deep greenish/brown, super comfy little sofa that’s not going anywhere.

I need a crafting corner or spot where I can assemble printbles & take fantastic photos to use with listings & social media posts but still have room for entertaining on occasion. I’m thinking of holding classes here, too. There must be room for lots of paperie pieces, accessories for printables, props for photographing printables, & places to keep business & personal type stuff.

Am I asking too much of this L-shaped space? Please comment on your thoughts…I so need some input in how to transform this wonderful room.

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Studio on the Corner is into Halloween even though it’s hot & humid. A fun pack of papers, Fright Night, will soon be listed along with tags, & more papers & labels for creating apothecary packages for decorating your home in a haunted, Victorian way.

Here’s a peek at the dozen papers soon to be listed…

Fright Night Etsy Image 1

Always high-quality, 300 dpi, 8.5 inches x 11 inches so you can print at home, if you want.  Wondering what to do with digital papers?  Here’s a quick list:

  1. Use for digital scrapbooking
  2. Use for paper scrapbooking
  3. Add a background to a social media banner
  4. Create cupcake toppers &/or wrappers
  5. Use for card making
  6. Wrap a small gift
  7. Cover a light switch
  8. Make paper bows
  9. Use with your Cricut or whatever cut-out crafting machine you have
  10. Add a cover to metal tags
  11. Fold & add as a page in an art or junk journal
  12. Use your vibrant imagination!

Well there it is. . . what’s going on here on the corner.  I sure hope I hear from you ‘cuz I really need some input on that room.  Have a most wonderful August day!

My Printed Signature

new beginnings, Studio on the Corner Etsy Shop, Uncategorized

New Beginnings

Have you ever had that moment when you knew this is a. . .

New beginning aligned right_edited-1

 

 

 

Since before journeying to England in May things have been swirling in a mad dance of changes. One thing led into the next, one event piled upon another. Get ready for England, travel to England, my daughter & grandson’s big move to the city, a home to reorganize for one, please, a momentous first birthday party for grandson No. 2, the annual 127 Garage Sale & today, Monday August 6th I awake with no big celebrations or occasions awaiting my attention. The moving out & in is over, the paint put away, for now, & nothing left but time to make it happen. Finally I feel like I’m starting a new life in earnest.

How I experience these years is up to me, but one thing I know for sure is that Studio on the Corner must take precedence. Building my little business, growing, thriving & making it my life is not only a dire need, but one that I very much desire. And by the way, nothing pushes like a genuine need & fear of the consequences of not rising to the occasion. Creating printables from old, often forgotten images in the public domain brings me so much pleasure. Now, I have to find a way to convince others, many others, that these paperie bits inspired from the past will bring them joy, too.

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Funny frog illustration by Arthur Morris from his amusing book written in 1897, Zig-Zag at the Zoo. 

At times it’s so quiet that I have to turn on the TV just for the noise. I’ve taken to listening to podcasts about selling on Etsy, selling digital designs & entrepreneurship just to hear another human.  I’m tempted to begin a podcast about starting over after 50 or something like that because I’ve found none that appeal to me. So I’m mostly learning from those wild gen xers & crazy millenials who run free about the world of social media. Kudos to them!

Then there’s missing my charge, grandson No.1 who I nanny-grannied for 13 sweet & sometimes trying years.  Not a day goes by that I don’t miss him & the little guy in Colorado so much my heart aches. Once upon a time I would never admit that I was lonely. I have no problem saying it now, I get lonely, but I don’t believe there’s a soul on earth who hasn’t been lonely at some point in life. What always cuts through the missing you & lonely moments is working on my mac, creating, tweaking, or searching. You know you love something when you lose all track of time & space while in its presence.

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I’m so glad brilliant people write hit-the-mark prose that can be used by we lowly mortals for aspirational guides. CS Lewis’ quote does just that. He makes me believe that no matter how old I am I too can have goals & dreams, while the dreams are there it’s the goals that I am working towards. I’ve set goals like: How many sales do I need a month, a week, each day? I did not choose a random number…I chose an achievable number needed to create a happy life for myself.

TEN

Can you guess the number? “Ten,” you say. Well you would be correct. Out of all the millions, nay billions, of people on this planet I only need to convince 10 each day to purchase something from my little shop, Studio on the Corner. Sounds like a snap, right? Not so…it’s much more difficult to be found on this frenzy of internet shops & businesses than you can imagine. So I’m going the shameless route & hit social media, pin like a mad woman, post on Instagram & share what, why & how I create. Oh by the way you can expect an increase in blog posts. I hope that’s ok with you.

This is where I am right now, today. It’s a new start, a new beginning & while we say good-bye to yesterday, let’s embrace & enjoy today while setting goals, planning & sneaking in a dream or 2 for the days to come.

 

There’s a couple new listings in Studio on the Corner Etsy shop…The Ginger Piggery package is coming together slowly, but the invitation & a favor bag are listed. I just love the happy pigs that live in the world of Ginger Piggery & I hope you will, too.

Ginger Piggery invite etsy image for blogGinger Piggery Invitation

Ginger Piggery Favor Bags

Gionger Piggery Cookie Bags w texture

Look for another post on Wednesday. I’m thinking a peak into what my transformed bedroom area is turning into might be the ticket. I’ll continue off & on with stories from England, too because reliving that trip is so darn wonderful. Also, I mentioned tutorials in previous posts & you’ll be seeing a few of those along with freebies from time to time. I am so ready to dive into this head first & swim like crazy to reach that goal!

The Cat in the Bowler Hat, the mini poodle, Winston & Miss Adventure along with me

My Printed Signature

 

 

 

all wish you a fantastic day!