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Valuing Our Quilts


2011It is a difficult task to place a value on a beautiful quilt, much less one that we have put all our creative juices, our talent and skills, and many, many hours into making!  It is not an easy thing for a customer to understand, either. I think that the first key to understanding the value of a quilt, is to let go of any preconceived notion that any quilt should be priced the same as one purchased in a "big box store", which would include the vast majority of quilts sold.  Quilts that have been made in an assembly line, quilts that are made by the tens of thousands, quilts sewn in "sweat shops", these are all manufactured quilts. ... » Read More

In a New Collection


2011One of my baby blankets has been featured in a new collection entitled, "Beep, Beep". It's a cute collection of cars and such...the things little (and all) boys love!  Are you, or do you know someone, who is expecting a little boy?  The blanket featured in the collection is just one of the "baby boy" blankets I have listed for sale, and of course I also have quilts for boys, too! ... » Read More

Spring!


April 2011I am really looking forward to spring!  Yes, it is true that the official first day of spring was weeks ago, but I live in the Northwest, so spring comes later here.  In fact, in the news today is that it's now been 41 days in a row with precipitation, and tomorrow is predicted to be all sunshine!  There's a cause for celebration!  I've gotten a start on that today, by creating a collection here on ArtFire entitled, "Spring Flowers!".  The photo accompanying my post today is along those lines, though it is one of my own photographs of pink cherry blossoms. Why is it that we so enjoy spring?  Sure, it's the change t... » Read More

Quilting and Why


2011Why do we quilt?  After all, quilting is often described as taking a bunch of different fabrics, cutting them into small pieces, mixing them up, then sewing them together.  Those of you who do quilt will recognize that there is so much more to it than just that.  It's the thrill of the hunt for just the right mix of fabrics, by color, by size of print, not to mention designing the quilt to use each fabric to advantage, creating something attractive to the eye.  I really do enjoy the designing of a quilt, though admittedly, there are some frustrations to be conquered with any quilt.  These vary from quilt to quilt, some... » Read More

One of the Really Great Things about Selling Online


I have begun to realize lately that one of the things I am really enjoying about having my own little online business, is something I never imagined was possible!  What I mean by this, is that I am working alone, in my home, creating blankets, quilts, jewelry, cards, and coming up with other ideas along the way.  The last thing I thought I'd be saying is how much I enjoy the friendly camaraderie I feel.  Here on ArtFire, there is such a close sense of community.  We share our joys, our sorrows, we give advice, we give constructive critiques (only when requested, mind you), we help one another with techniques, you name it!  I feel ... » Read More

What's New?


February 2011This conjures up all kinds of things, doesn't it?  What's new?  I don't watch the news on TV all that much, but I did watch one of those morning talk/news/weather shows today and was amazed at all the things that were new, at least to me!  There were many weather briefs all focused on the huge winter storm beginning to make its way across the United States, estimated at affecting 150 million people, a third of our country.  Wow!  That's some storm.  There was irony in my watching that, though, because here in the Northwest, in western Washington state, there is not a cloud in the sky today and the sun is shining br... » Read More

Why I Do What I Do


2011Today I'm going to share why I make my baby blankets the way I do. You see, my baby blankets are not your ordinary baby "receiving" blankets!  I've seen plenty of those and they are scarcely big enough to wrap a newborn in, and they get smaller by the week!  Oh, I know, it's really the baby that gets bigger by the week, but it sure seems like that blanket is getting smaller and smaller, doesn't it?My blankets are 40 to 42 inches square, depending on how wide the selvedge is.  It amazes how different every piece of fabric is. Sometimes the selvedge is so wide that there is scarcely 40 inches left of usable fabric.  I use all cotto... » Read More

Editing and More Editing


January 2011As the holiday season came to an end, I was questioning the quality of my studio, in terms of my being able to attract customers.  I posted on the Forums, asking for my fellow artisans' opinions on both my studio and my products.  What I got in return was not always easy to take.  But, when you ask for a critique, that's what you get in this arena.  What I was made well aware of, was that I had been yet unsuccessful in writing SEO (search engine optimization) that would indeed be found by potential customers. So, ever since, I have been rewriting and editing, and editing again, working my way through my listed items.Â... » Read More

Life's Inspirations


Spring 2011This is my latest curated collection: Life's Inspirations! Our inspirations come in many different forms: blessings, love, faith, a beautiful sight, and life iteself.  May you feel inspired! Lifes Inspirations Curated By: GracefulArts ArtFire.com ... » Read More

Winter Blahs


January 2011What is it about winter, specifically January?  December is darker, perhaps by a few minutes anyway, but there's Christmas and everything that goes with it, the decorations, the planning, the lights, a whole lot of excitement!  Sure, January has a couple of holidays, but they are rather anti-climatic ones if you know what I mean.  Where I live, it rains probably 12 out of every 14 days, and sometimes more than that!  I remember one winter when we hit a record of something like 64 straight days of precipitation.  And just 2 years ago we were snowed in for weeks it seemed like--well, it might been just a week, or maybe 2.... » Read More

Time Flies on Wings of Lightening


December 2010These are lyrics to a song that keep coming to my mind, and surely can't be far from the truth at this time of year!  Don't you remember waiting and waiting seemingly forever for exciting upcoming events when you were young?  I sure do!  It's not like I'm old now, but time just absolutely flies by!   We're now two weeks past Thanksgiving, my home is not yet decorated for Christmas and there are no festive lights outside my door.  But this will all be happening quite soon.  You see, I've spent the past several weeks doing other things.  I put a lot of effort into preparing to do my first bazaar, only to h... » Read More

What's Next?


2011We are all regularly faced with the question, "What's next?" aren't we?  And it's such a tough one to answer!  It's not that we're lacking in things to do, it's the decision-making process of narrowing that list down to one thing that we're going to tackle next! I am constantly coming up with ideas of things that I'd like to try.  The problem for me is definitely one of keeping some kind of focus in mind so I can feel like I'm moving in the right direction.  Right now, that list of ideas is very long.  A few examples?  I've been experimenting with bags lately.   So far I've made a couple pretty small bags, a cosmetic s... » Read More

Something Old, Something New...Especially for Brides


Are you, or your daughter, getting married this summer?  I have created four necklaces especially for brides!  Of course, they can be worn for any occasion, but they just might be the perfect accessory for your wedding gown. The first is a true beauty! It's a double-stranded, twisted and woven blend of aurora borealis Swarovski crystal roundels and bicones, teardrops, and seed beads, as well as freshwater pearls, pearly seed beads, clear delicas, round and clear luster beads, and 3- and 4-sided sparkling silver-lined cut beads. You can see the listing here. My second piece features 3 beautiful 8 x 13mm faceted crystal clear briole... » Read More

Shopping! It's a Good Thing!


Spring 2011 Like most women I know, I will openly admit that I do enjoy shopping!  Yes, it is the thrill of the hunt, but it really is necessary for those of us with creative minds.  What exactly do I mean by this?  Well, what I have around me, my "stash" as some call it, leads me to further creativity.  I love it when I have the time to sit and stroll through my fabrics.  I am reminded of past ideas as I uncover items that had since gone hiding amongst the rest.  Sometimes this leads to some sorting, like storing all my batik fabrics (a particular favorite) in their own "Rubbermaid" container, or perhaps sorting by color, re... » Read More

Like Mother Like Daughter


March 2011 Isn't it funny how mothers and daughters so often mirror each other? My youngest daughter recently opened her own studio here on ArtFire!  The name of it is Polka Patch.  She and her little daughter have a thing for polka dots, which I have perpetuated many times over, of course! Since she married her sweetheart she has let her creativity soar!  Not only is she a culinary school graduate, since she loves to cook, but she's very much into sewing and crafting, and "repurposing", which is only natural when you have a young family and far more ideas than dollars. My older daughter has been married for quite some time, and h... » Read More

GracefulArts studio is taking shape!


Yes, indeed, my studio is taking shape!  I've recently come to Artfire with a new studio name of GracefulArts.  I still have a store on Etsy.com named UncommonTreasures, at least for awhile.  I made the change in name because, although I really liked my original store name, a lot of others did too, and Uncommon Treasures stores were popping up everwhere. The new name of GracefulArts portrays the way I feel about the things that I make.  They are my art, my expression of beauty.  Grace to me means a number of things, namely, movement and fluidity, femininity, and of course the Lord's grace, by which I am able to create beautiful t... » Read More
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