April 16, 2014

making in America


This spring has brought so many transitions into my life.  Good transitions.  A new birth in the family, a younger brother moving out west to stake his claim, a new love and companionship in my life.

I am approaching this latest blog prompt with a bit more about my personal life.  You see things are moving so fast right now, there are times the hurting part of me - yet to be healed- doubts these joyous transitions.  In a way it is like putting myself in a box that I distinctly remember breaking through years ago!

I have come to know that doubts and negative thought patterns cloud your mind and block the positivity and joy that takes place in your life daily.  Consistent positive emotions and thoughts become so much more vital as we get older. The main word being, consistent.

Having a place to journal my thoughts while figuring out how I can make it in a land riddled with opportunity is the very essence of freedom.  And I am grateful and thankful to be free!

love, Jen



March 31, 2014

what i am reading, right now...

My artistic process begins with basic research and observation of like minded artists and mindful individuals.  Books are my foundation, because they provide a fuller picture for life in general. 
 
Art & Life are interchangeable in my world and I believe in order to produce amazing beauty, one must actively pursue and seek self-actualization.  Essentially, I have a ton of craft books and a ton of self-help books, and plenty of love and support from myself and others to help produce the greatest work I can on a daily basis.
 
I guess I can add that meditation, yoga, and long nature walks are also an essential ingredient that is apart of my artistic process.  These tools enhance my awareness of the vastness of the universe, while acknowledging my quest for inner peace and love.
 
Here is what I am reading, right now...
 
 
Paper to Petal by Rebecca Thuss & Patrick Farrell
foreward by Martha Stewart
 
I originally discovered this book while reading one of my favorite magazines, Martha Stewart's Living J/F 14. The colors and creativity popped out of the pages so I added the article to my home crafts workbook.
 
While browsing in the library the other day I just happened to run into this book and did not even realize the magnitude of possibilities for paper flower making!
 
Recommendation: Easy instructions, amazing photos, and a billion ideas! Love this book! 


Martha Stewart's Encyclopedia of Sewing & Crafts
 
It is always worth it to go back to the basics.  It reminds me of why I do what I do.

The simplicity of handcrafts is astonishing and the great thing about crafting is a lot of times it doesn't cost you a dime.  Most things I end up crafting are already there, possibly in another form, but there to be used further. This is the gem in handmade, using what you already have or enhancing it slightly with what you have around. 

Recommendation:  Love Martha, she is a true pioneer for handmade and American Made.  Making things is empowering and gives people purpose.  Beautiful Photos, Basics for Beginners, Over 200 craft ideas! This book is invaluable and I recommend buying it!


 
The Good Stuff
from growing up in a dysfunctional family
by Karen Casey

Apparently about 98% of us have some sort of dysfunction with in our families.  Karen Casey spells it out by simply telling her own story and countless other thoughtful stories of people she met during her own recovery.  This book takes you from experiencing harsh criticism to child abuse so the spectrum is endless and touches every type of family their is.

Recommendation: Excellent read if your seeking thought provoking testimony, mindful approaches to living life, and a positive outlook on your family ties.
 
 


handmade & haiku

a delicate chilly breeze
sunset in coral
one more day til spring




Vintage Mismatched Pillowcases

 
 
 




Directions

  • The Find: I am a firm believer in all things reusable so get inspired by beautiful vintage floral's in your local thrift store, I paid 99cents for  this single vintage pillowcase at Value Village.
  • Match it up:  I took my pillowcase into Hancock Fabrics to ensure that I got the colors right for the other side, you can do this or if you really want to be a frugal master, the thrift store sells pieces of fabric, and sheets that could match with your case.  Just remember it needs to be at the very least the same size as the pillow case and you will need to pieces. I ended up getting about a half yard in fabric about (22 x 32 " x 2)
Time to Sew!
    • Cut your original pillowcase directly on the seam (two sides and the bottom)
    • Lay one side of the pillowcase on top of your fabric and use as a pattern
    • You will need about a 1.5" seam allowance and about 5 - 6" at the opening for your fold
    • Sew the opening fold using a zig zag seam, repeat with second piece
    • Place both vintage and new fabric pieces front to front aligning seams and pin
    • Sew about 1" from cut seam (side, bottom, front)
    • Finish seams with zig zag settings
    • Cut access thread
    • Press or steam fabric seams
    • Enjoy your amazing beautiful Vintage/Modern one-of-a-kind pillowcases!

February 17, 2014

January 22, 2014

american in paris

 
follow my journey to Paris, France this fall.
 
eager to learn French techniques and worldly style, I am off to Paris this Fall to seek art, fine textiles, and of course buttered pastries!  In concert with my visit I am producing a F14 Collection reflecting an American take on French style and detailing. 
 
Follow my journey with these tags, #americaninparisf14, #chicmeetscool, #redwhiteandbleu, #jenniferlovenacollectionf14, #vivacioustraveler,



January 21, 2014

staying connected with family and friends in 2014!




Before you finish the rest of your holiday treats, long phone calls catching up with old friends, and your last therapy session to calm you from your families festive gatherings; make sure to capture those special dates that keep you connected throughout the year.

I always have trouble keeping special dates and even birthdays in one place.  Make it easy for yourself like I did.  Print this out and it will keep you on track in celebrating the people in your life on their special days!