Monday, 25 May 2015

Wedding Bouquet Charms

It's getting to be that time of year again.  The time of year filled with weddings, wedding showers, and special events.  
If you are getting married this summer...if you are doing your own bouquet with flowers you pick from your garden or a nearby field...if you want to add a little something extra to a bouquet to make it really your own...I have about a dozen of these hand stamped heart shaped pottery charms to add just that something extra. 
 They are glazed on both sides so they are nice and smooth.

If your wedding is still a while away, you can even custom order them to match your colour scheme.

They're over on my etsy shop if you want to have a peek.

Linking up with:

Tuesday, 12 May 2015

Work in progress...

Sometimes it takes me so long to fill a kiln that it feels like months go by with out new pictures to share.  I thought I would take a minute to share some of the works in progress that have been occupying my time.  Even though they are not completed projects, they may give you a little peek into my world...

Rolling out lots of clay for serving dishes of all sizes.  Some with Juniper, Cedar, 
the first Ferns of the season...

 Reclaiming about a year's worth of clay trimmings.  I've reclaimed about a third so far. Without a pug mill, it's a hard job and I can only do a little bit at a time...maybe 10 pounds?  Max.
Playing with texture in different serving dishes... this one.  I'm having a terrible time with these cracking though, so there aren't a lot of finished products for the number of them made.

  A little bit of wheel throwing.  I find I'm throwing pots only to replace the ones that I have sold.  All of my newer items seem to be hand built.

I've found I can make the tube vases without the extruder (I don't have one at home...only at the college studio, and no access to that one until September).  Added bonus - I can make them in small batches so I don't end up tired of them before the pile is done.

 A whole-lotta rolling out of clay.  I'll share this in the next couple of weeks, but over a period of a couple of weeks, I made 7 dozen of a particular item for Sarnia Artwalk.  LOTS of rolling.

And one finished piece... I've made myself a necklace to wear at Sarnia Artwalk out of some of the beads I made.  I haven't had any beads at a show yet, so I thought I would introduce them with an example or two of how to use them.

I apologize for the quality of the photos.  They are all from my instagram feed, and somehow the quality deteriorated trying to add them into this post. I'll try to rememdy that.

Tuesday, 28 April 2015

Of Flowers and Vases

I love bringing fresh flowers into my home.  From the first bloom of the year (daffodils at my house) all the way through to the last greens of winter, I usually have a little snippet of something fresh in at least one room in my house.  
I've been working on some new vases so that other people can have that luxury too...vases that I hope are lovely enough to stand on their own, but not so intricate that they detract from the flowers that I add. 
 Especially since I tend to just grab a few simple blooms without ever doing anything fancy with them.
I'm finding that I really like grey vases with flowers.  For years, I made all my vases white, but I think I see a lot more grey vases in the near future.
 See how the flowers just pop against it?

 And although these aren't vases, I think the flowers on them give me permission to add them here.
I made them as spoon rests, but people have been buying them for ring dishes, soap dishes, for business cards...that's one of the things I love best about doing shows in get to talk to the customers and see just how they are going to use the pieces in their every day lives.

Linking up with:

Thursday, 23 April 2015

Sarnia Lambton Potters Guild Spring Sale 2015

So last weekend was the 2015 Sarnia Lambton Potters' Guild Spring of my favourite events of the year.  I only got pictures of a handful of the potters' works before my shift started, but I thought you may enjoy a little tour:
 Lydia Nicholson Pottery (above and below).

 Marg Hebbourn (above and below).

 Jane Danic (above and below).

 Mad Pursuit Pottery -a husband and wife team (above and below).

Yours truly - Remembrances and AtTheCrossroads (above and below)

 Ronni Blackmore (above and below)

Wherever you are, I hope you have a chance to get out and support your local makers 
this spring and summer.

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Forest Garden Club Home and Garden Show

Next weekend, you can find me at the Home and Garden Show
Hosted by the Forest Garden Club
 Saturday April 25, 2015
10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
 Admission $3.00
Location: The Shores Arena Complex, Forest, Ontario
Food Booth, Door Prizes, Tooney Tables.

I'll be bringing every "gardeny" thing I have.
Hope to see some of my local friends there!

Thursday, 2 April 2015

Sarnia Lambton Potters Guild Sale

The Sarnia Lambton Potters' Guild Annual Spring Sale
will be held once again at Degroots' Nurseries on London Line, Sarnia
on April 17th and 18th
Friday 10:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m.  Saturday 8:00 a.m to 5:00

Have a sneak peak at some of the vendors:

Remembrances:  on etsy over here (AtTheCrossroads) and on Facebook over here (that's me!)
Mad Pursuits Pottery: on etsy over here an on Facebook over here (Brendan and Emily are wickedly talented)
Lydia Nicholson Pottery: on etsy over here and on Facebook over here (I admire Lydia's style immensely)
Sweet Fusion Glass Jewellery & Gifts: on Facebook over here (Katherine Bisson)
Ronni Blackmore: on Facebook over here
Pauline's Pots 
Elizabeth Martiniuk
Jane Danic
Marg Hebbourn
Brid Lachapelle

Monday, 30 March 2015

Woven "baskets"

I'd like to introduce you to what I've been working on recently...
 ...pottery bowls with basket tops.

 I've had quite a bit of fun experimenting with these.

 So far, I've tried crochet, 

 jewellery wire with wool, 

 knotted jute, (and the jute rope in the first picture).

 I have one little one left that I'm saving for cattail fiber, once the season arrives.

 And then a couple that are "just" pottery...

So now I'm curious.  
Should I make some blank basket bowls so that other people can play and experiment too? 
Is there any interest out there, I have to wonder?  
Feel free to leave me some comments on this one, either way.  I would greatly appreciate it.

Linking up with:
Frontier Dreams for Keep Calm Craft On
Fiber Arts Friday at Wisdom Begins in Wonder

Friday, 27 March 2015

Fixing Paper Bag Handles.

Ok, here's the thing...I don't have room in my house to store a bulk order of paper bags, but I did need some for a craft show last year.  I happened upon some at a Dollar Store and thought they would do just the trick as I could buy only as any as I thought I would need for the show.  Well, as these things normally get what you pay for.  These bags might be fine to hold yarn, or baby slippers, or something like that, but certainly not pottery.  The handles kept ripping out!  I finally decided it was time to go ahead and fix the handles - and if you are in a similar situation, here's what I did:
 These particular bags just had a thin piece of tape holding the handle down (which I couldn't see at the store as there was a paper wrapper holding them in packages of three).
 I cut the tape and peeled it off the handle... glued the handle back in place...
...and then covered the whole thing with a layer of packing tape.  
Times two sides per bag.
Times 35 bags.  What else was I supposed to do with them?
But my lesson is learned, and after I use them up I will be returning to the fabric bags I have been making the whole time the paper bags were in the "to fix" pile.

Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Button packaging

Now that I have a few "craft" shows under my belt, it's time to ramp up the packaging before the next round of shows starts.  I've been working on different packaging options for a couple of weeks, and thought I would share the process for what I have decided on for button packaging in case anyone wants to make their own.
Please note that these were made with a standard printer, card stock from the office supply store, and the Paint program that came with my computer.  A totally DIY project if you have some time to invest.
I started by googling (that's a verb now, right?) an image for free border clip art.  There are a few you can download for a couple of dollars, but since I wasn't 100% decided at the time, I decided to go for a free one.  Make sure you save it as a .jpg file.
Then I opened it in Paint and used the text application to add "Handmade Buttons" at the top in the same font as my logo and my contact info at the bottom.  You can adjust the location and the size of the font while the text window is open, but AS SOON as you click anywhere else on the screen it will close the text window and if you want to remove it, you have to erase it, or undo.  NOTE: make sure you save the file under a new name every time you add something.  That way, if you need to go back to edit something (like if you don't like the size of something) you can just erase the one item without having to start over from scratch. 
For the shorter button cards, I just used the "Cut" function and removed a piece from the center, moved the bottom to line up with the top, and then cropped the whole new card as a square without the blank bottom portion.  (This will make much more sense if you have Paint open in another window while you read this - you know, if you're trying it out).
To print multiple cards per page, I had to be in the documents section of my computer (not in Paint).  Left click on the file and it will give you the option to print (as a photo) and then I just put 4 per card for the large button cards (the blue buttons at the beginning of this post).  It happened to be just the right size.  For these little guys, I had to open a WORD document, set the page to 3 columns, and then insert them into what would normally have been the text.  You may have to play around with your margins to get them to fit.
This is the basket I found for them at the thrift store for $1.00!  It's like it was made for them.

NOTE:  I used to have "Remembrances" written on the top of my old button cards and at my last craft show someone asked me what they were.  Like a goober, I answered "They're buttons" not knowing what she meant...and then I realized that my business name wasn't up anywhere in the booth (other than on business cards) because there were three of us sharing as part of the Potters' Guild.  So, long story short...I have changed the wording from "Remembrances" to "Handmade Buttons" and hopefully they will get the name from the bottom of the card.
So, what I'm saying is...even though I keep reading that you should "make what you make" and pay someone to do the rest of it, or outsource jobs--- at the beginning stages of growing your business, I think it is perfectly fine to try things out yourself.  You may just surprise yourself.  I did.

Linking up with:
There's still about one week left to get the 15% discount on items in my etsy shop...
head on over to this Frontier Dreams post to find the discount code.