all seasons wreaths

So here we are. Finally! 
There is a serious virus that is knocking people down all around here. It kicked me pretty good and I had to lay low for several days including a weekend in bed. Yuck. Happily all is well now so I can get back on track.

I'm pretty proud of all the projects that I come up with but sometimes there are some designs that are more true to my core design instincts which makes them extra special—this All Seasons Wreaths is definitely one of them (promo code: thankyou -- look on the home page for details). 

I started with the Winter wreath. I didn't want it to become another Wreath Gift Set so I kept thinking I needed something else to make it stand out. That's when the idea of seasons popped into mind. I like adding versatility to my designs whenever possible and that's why I made these easy to use as artwork or as gift boxes. The photos don't show examples but I've also included a file where all four wreaths have the shapes completely cut out (no 3D lifted pieces) which can be used for gift tags, cards or frameable artwork.

Keep in mind that as with all paper projects color is a big deal too. Look at how different an all white design looks with or without color! Big difference, right? I like both—depends on where and how it's going to be used. Keep in mind that the completely white version would look amazing inside a shadow box with a colored background. Do you see it?

Last but not least I decided to play around with patterns inspired by the wreath designs themselves. I don't have any immediate plans for these right now—unfortunately. 

I still have unfulfilled dreams of having my own fabric and paper goods collections. Another one is for my box designs to be produced by a manufacturer so that people that don't have cutting machines can enjoy them too. All in good time. For now I'm putting together some pitches and we'll see what happens. No telling what the future will hold!

fall paper quilt

I haven't made a paper quilt in quite a long time so I corrected that this week. I confess that this had a lot to do with the fact that I was so sick and tired of the framed piece we have on our mantle. It had been there forever and I needed something new — a paper quilt came to mind. Since it's fall themed it'll force me to make something new for the holiday season too (kind of like 'tricking' myself into doing something - ha!).

And you know I have to show you an all white version. For those of you that know me long enough know that working with white paper is one of my favorite things to do. Picture your wall color showing through each design (a bit brighter though since our gray weather gave me some darkish photos).

Which do you prefer — color or all white? 

I'm always surprised how some of my sketches (messy ones—which is basically why I rarely show them) end up being exactly what I had in mind and others change completely. I never know what I'm going to end up with and that's part of the fun. I like these types of projects because of the challenges — the illustrations need to be simple, can still stand on their own or work with the other images around them.

How do use this set?
- Use it for gift boxes. Some designs can make it past fall and Thanksgiving—like the apples, flower, acorn and leaves.
- Change it up—what about dark frames?
- Frame it! — use the artwork in drop shadow box (I really like the Ikea Ribba frames) or cut out the designs and use as flat designs.
- Make cards and gift tags with the artwork.

You can buy the Fall Paper Quilt in the shop here.
It will be FREE (a super deal since it's a $9.99 value!) until Saturday, Sept. 20th with a $9.98 or higher order (coupon code: thankyou).

Have a great start to the week!

terrarium inspiration

A few weeks ago the Global Talent Search started again and even though I signed up to participate I decided that I wasn't going to have enough time to put in the amount work needed. The deadline for the first round was right after we got back from our vacation and spending time with my family was what I really needed. 

The first assignment was about terrariums. It reminded me of some work I made in the spring and it inspired new graphics (sketches I had from a trip to the nursery). It was one of those projects that slowly morphed into something I didn't expect. I worked on the graphics first and then decided they'd work on the wall. I stayed with greens but I can imagine these working well with so many other colors—blues, oranges, yellows—any color that matches your decor.

It's hard to tell but the dark background colors in the top and bottom pieces and the green on the right side of the middle piece are all recessed pieces of paper (similar to what I did with my Forest Shadows piece). 

I love my new little corner!
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The Terrarium Inspiration collection of SVG files is FREE in my shop with a purchase of $9.98 or higher with the code thankyou until September 14th.

partridge in a pear tree

Wow. I just checked to make sure that was right. It's been almost 6 months since my last post here and a year since I posted any new products in my shop. It was a crazy busy end of school year, long summer (with a nice break to visit Colombia!) and then starting off the school year again with a freshman in high school and a new middle schooler. Phew. 

I didn't forget about the blog or the shop, but after quietly making it past my eight (8!!) year anniversary in May I thought I would call it quits. I was THIS close to deleting every single post here (I'm still tempted by the need to just start fresh!) and closing up everything but I decided the let time slip by in order to think things through.

I really needed the time away. It was great to focus on family and daily life and do what needed to be done there without any other self-imposed work. Now that everything is starting to settle into a semi-routine I can come back here with a clearer mind, new ideas and with positive energy.

So here we go again...

First up is a the Partridge in a Pear Tree collection. It started with the colorful bird on the large gift box and the rest evolved from there. I knew I wanted something graphic with a folk flavor to it. My favorite thing about this set is that it really stands out. I still love, love working with white, but the striking red is a definite booster to this design. I really like how the tote bag turned out and I'll be placing an order for myself—ha!

Sometimes a design comes together without much of a plan but it's smooth sailing all the way—this was one of those designs—and I love it when that happens. I think that's when the true me shows up and just has fun.

The box and wall art collection are now available as SVG cutting files in my shop here.

I'm waiting to get a sample of this pattern from Spoonflower in order to offer it as fabric and wrapping paper. I can't wait to see how it turned out.

• • •

It's great to get the shop going again. I hope to post new collections on a weekly or bi-weekly basis depending on my schedule. Like I said before it was great to be away but trust me, some days I was just itching to make something, draw something — anything to get my hands going. For those of you that visit my Instagram stream you were a witness of most of that and those of you that still hang out here a bit—thank you! XO

made in paper

I'm very happy to share that a couple of my projects can be found in the latest issue of Made in Paper! This is the 4th issue of the magazine and I think this is my favorite so far. It's full of a lot of paper goodness, inspiration and easy to make projects.

The Apple Newsstand iPad edition is available today (you can order and see a preview here). It's available in the UK starting today and in about 4 weeks it should be in the US at Borders, Booksamillion and JoAnn's.

Thank you to Made in Paper for letting me join in the fun!

two visits

The Great Egret is a native bird of Texas and apparently he likes my car. Twice I've caught one standing on my car, when there are plenty of other rooftop options all around. I'm not supersticious but I've been told to take it as a good omen—ok, I'll take it! Ever since then I've been wanting to illustrate something with this beautiful bird and last night inspiration (and a bit of free time!) hit. I called it The Perfect Pair.

The rainy day and fear of scaring it away makes for a blurry photo, but you get the idea. They are so beautiful (and big!) up close!

Have a great weekend everyone!