Tag Archives: art

Some Sketches

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Between a never-ending to-do list of projects and presents and the ever-growing tension I’m having at work, I’ve really needed some time to just check out. I didn’t even take the time to grab the fancy-schmancy drawing pencils… just a mechanical pencil and my sketch book and just started sketching anything that I felt like drawing. It’s a rather random assortment, and I probably won’t even stop with these. I don’t even care that they are terribly thrown together. I just needed a break.

-sigh-

I promise there are better things on the horizon.

 

 

 

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My DIY Christmas Gifts

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(Christmas Eve night with Mister’s family)

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas full of joy and love, and I hope that you all got something special you were hoping for. I know I certainly did. Mister and I had about five different Christmas celebrations between Christmas Eve and Christmas day, and although travels were stressful, we got to share the holidays with many wonderful people. Now that Christmas is over and (the majority of) gifts have been given out, I can finally share with you the special gifts that I gave to those I love and care for that had that special DIY touch. I honestly believe that the presents that have extra time and handmade love put into them are the ones that mean the most. What all did I end up making? Well, let’s take a look.

Afghans
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This was the first ever afghan I’ve ever made. It’s crocheted in a never ending granny square, which I learned by watching this video on Youtube. (Just FYI – check out some of the other videos from mikeyssmail for some other fantastic crochet tutorials) I made this one for Mister’s family, and I think they really enjoyed it. His little brother even slept under it Christmas Eve night.

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Unfortunately, I ran out of time to finish the afghan I started for my sister. I did, however, give her a picture of her future gift-in-progress.

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Portraits

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It’s been awhile since I’ve sat down with my pencils and tried to draw anything at all, so I was really just hoping for the best here. I wanted to do something special for Mister’s brother and his girlfriend, and Mister really liked my portrait idea. While I’m not completely happy with it (which I don’t think I ever really am when it comes to any drawings), they were really happy with it and thought it looked just like them.

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Another special portrait I couldn’t really take credit for. While I have to have a photo of the subjects posed just the way I want them to look, my brother in law luckily doesn’t. So when I came up with an idea for another gift, I turned to him for assistance. When Mister’s Nanny passed away, his whole family was heartbroken. At the gravesite, Mister’s mother was crying, and he put his hand up on her shoulder and sang “Amazing Grace”, a family favorite especially for Nanny. Later, his mother sent him a text saying how that was a moment that should would never want to forget…so for Christmas I wanted to give her something that would always help her remember. Major thanks to my brother in law for making my vision for this portrait a reality. I absolutely loved presenting this gift. Not many pictures were taken at this point since we were all lost in happy tears. 

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Personalized Presents

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Another fun gift I can only take credit for the concept…Mister’s little brother is developing an interest in the culinary arts, and I wanted to have a fun DIY present for him. A friend at work has a sister who owns one of the super duper heavy duty embroidery machines, and I asked her if it would be possible to put his name on a chef’s hat. I explained that I wanted to stuff it with kitchen goodies. Much to my surprise, she also made an apron to match and had his name put on the pockets. Such a fun, simple gift that was definitely enjoyed.

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Another personalized present came along as somewhat of an accident. I was at an auction and snuggies were up for bid for very very cheap. The auctioneer said the color of the snuggie was blue, as that was what was pictured. It wasn’t until I got home with my new snuggie that I noticed “Support Your City – Pittsburgh” labeled on the box. “Uh-oh,” I thought, and opened it to discover a black and gold snuggie with Pittsburgh embroidered on the pocket. That just wouldn’t do. I’m not a sports fan, and neither is Mister, but black and gold are the colors of his fraternity. One seam ripper and some iron-on letters later, the AXN snuggie was born and was a major hit with Mister.

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Photography

 

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This was by far the best received gift, and I couldn’t be more thrilled about the emotional response it received. My sister saw a pin on Pinterest of an idea to have your little girl photographed in your wedding dress (it also suggests that one day you can display it at her wedding). My sister merely mentioned it once how much she’d love to have pictures done of my neice like that, and the lightbulb went off. How difficult could it really be? The only difficult part was getting my neice away from my sister long enough to play a little bit of dress up. I have to give my neice credit, she was a fantastic secret-keeper as well. She told me that she had told mommy that she and Aunt E were going to do crafts so she told me we had to do at least one craft so she wouldn’t be lying to mommy. I had wanted to get one printed on canvas, but aside from not being able to pick just one, it had taken until the last few days before Christmas to be able to sneak my neice away, which didn’t leave much time for printing. Instead, I got a few small favorites framed and tried out the faux canvas printing at the local Walmart, which I had a coupon for (woohoo!). I’ll refrain from posting all the pictures of my sister’s extremely emotional reaction, but let’s just say I’m pretty much the best sister ever. 🙂

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I hope you all had a fantastic holiday, and have a happy New Year. Best wishes to you all! There’s sure to be many more adventures for Creative Chronicle in the new year…

Winter-time Blues

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I know it’s not even technically “winter” yet, but it’s starting to feel like it, and that’s bad news bears for me. It always seems like the colder that it gets, the less I feel like doing anything at all other than laying in the bed with a heating pad and a cup of coffee. It’s not that I fall into a creative rut, believe me, there’s plenty to be done around the Creative Chronicle homestead. I just can’t motivate myself to get anything done. 

Take this journal page for instance. I just bought a new sketchbook style journal about a week ago. It took until three days ago to even take it out of the bag and attempt to start sketching (which I did without ever leaving the bed). I finished the page yesterday and snapped a few pictures. Did I immediately jump online and start my blog post? Nope. Even though it had been daunting on me that I hadn’t posted since Halloween, I opted for going to sleep early instead. That’s why I’m now forcing myself through this unmotivated “blah”-ness, and getting this journal page up right now (before I’ve even had my coffee, no less).

I’ve got to kick these winter-time blues…and FAST. The holidays are weighing pretty heavily on me right now, as I’ve resolved to do as much DIY Christmas as possible. There’s also the fact that we’ll be having Thanksgiving with my family and a Sunday Thanksgiving with Mister’s family, and at the moment I’m completely clueless as to what to make and have been roaming Pinterest seeking inspiration. I want to do some impressive dishes you don’t always find on the holiday dinner table. I’m also literally knee-deep in crochet projects for Christmas, as well as some other pretty nifty DIY present ideas. I had to invest in some very helpful crafter’s gloves to help take away some of the pain in my hands from all the action I’ve been subjecting them to, especially with the never-ending granny square afghan I’m making for a gift (plus there will soon be a second one started for another gift). I can’t wait to post some pictures of the completed projects, as I’m pretty sure the majority of those who will receive the gifts don’t ever visit Creative Chronicle.

It’s time to get my butt in gear. It’s time to grab the coffee, the crochet hook, and plant myself down in the rocking chair and get back to work! Maybe I’ll throw on some sunglasses and beach music to convince myself that it isn’t so chilly outside.

 

Meditation…..or not…

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A few weeks ago, I stumbled across Jamie Ridler Studios. I’m always looking for inspiration from other creative individuals, and I can’t even begin to tell you about all the wealth of inspiration that can be found within her blog. It’s filled with beauty, magic, and more than a few prompts to get your creative juices flowing. What I found to be extra exciting about the blog though was that, when you sign up for her newsletter, Jamie includes a free guided meditation in your welcome email.

Meditation has always been something I have been incredibly curious about. What isn’t appealing about a relaxed state of mind? The ability to free yourself from worries and concerns? Unfortunately, as hard as I try, I find it completely impossible. Whenever I close my eyes and start to relax, that’s when the engine of my brain immediately fires up. It’s like my brain is filled with what I like to call “thought-vomit”, anything that can come up, WILL come up. Try to focus on clearing my mind and automatically insecurities creep in or worries about what I may have forgotten during the day. Believe me, it couldn’t be more irritating.

My resolution? Keep trying. I’m not one to give up after a failed first try. I’m determined that through the resources provided by Jamie Ridler and a few other blogs I’ve been following, I will eventually get the hang of meditation. I will gain control of my own thoughts. I will obtain the peace of mind that I crave. 

(Oh, and as for Jamie’s Wishcasting Wednesday – What do you wish to let go of? I wish to let go of my own insecurities and strained trust concerns. Bear with me, folks.)

 

 

Fall is in the Air – Crayon Doodles Journal Page

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As the weather gets colder, I feel less and less like doing anything at all. When the real cold hits, I hate to even step outside. Right now, though, is perfection. October, my favorite month, is right around the corner. It’ll be pumpkin spice everything to eat and drink, Halloween, all the wonderful decorations…what isn’t to love about it? The temperature is starting to drop here, and all I want to do is fill a mug with some hot chai, grab the nearest book, and curl up under a blanket for awhile. I did curl up under my blanket last night, but I brought along a sketchbook and some regular old crayons. I love working with crayons because I feel like a child every time I start to color.

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This was the first doodle to flow out of the crayons, and I decided it would go just perfect in my journal. I can already feel the warmth of a nice steamy mug of tea. Perfection! Mister saw this one and requested a crayon sketch of himself. Still focusing on the idea of “warmth”, I decided he should be wearing my favorite hoodie of his that I used to wear around on the chillier evenings. I included his silly Gilligan-style hat that he always wears during pledging, which starts next week and always happens during the most frigid weather. When thinking of warmth, I can’t help but include Smokey, his cat, who just may be the softest, fluffiest cat ever. He’s often served as a foot warmer for me, and he’s just too adorable not to snuggle with.

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Told you he’s too adorable not to snuggle with. 🙂

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