Tag Archives: Cynthia Shaffer

An Artful Earthquake: a class review & flea market finds!


Some of my weekends rate higher on the creative Richter scale than others, and this past weekend was full of seismic activity!  I’m still feeling the aftershocks four days later, and am thankful for all the creative bounty rumbled its way into my life.  I attended a great class and hunted for arty treasure at a swap meet – such fun!

Saturday: An amazing class taught by Lisa Engelbrecht…


I was a lucky attendee of the first class to be taught at Jenny Doh’s home studio.  Lisa Engelbrecht taught the all-day lettering & mixed-media class, and she’s as nice and as personable as she is talented.  The class included lessons on lettering, foiling, working with acrylic inks to make washes, collage, and more!  I enjoyed myself and learned a lot – what a great combo!  It was a special treat to meet Lisa E., whose work I’ve admired for years, and to meet my fellow crescendoh.com Design Team member, Lisa Guerin.

Jenny did a great job of hosting the class at her home studio, and the other attendees and I were impressed with her attention to detail and “above and beyond” offerings.  She provided goodies in the morning (including yummy scones), snacks and beverages during the day, and made everyone feel very welcome.  Ordering lunch from a local eatery was optional – I opted in, and the sandwich I ordered was both delicious and huge and also came with chips and a big cookie.

Another nice touch: Jenny took a photo of our group, and printed up a copy of the photo for each of us.  Combined with an “Art Saves” postcard, it made a lovely takeaway, and a great reminder of a wonderful class experience.

Click here to read Jenny Doh’s blog post about the day and see her pictures.
Click here to read Cynthia Shaffer’s blog post about the day and see her pictures.

Rating: 9.0 on the Artistic Richter scale


Sunday: A trip to a local swap meet with my hubby…

One of my favorite pastimes is scouring swap meets, flea markets, and antique stores for odds and ends I can use in my artwork.  Some of my favorite past finds have included vintage buttons, sewing notions, black and white photos, and handkerchiefs, but I’m open to just about anything that catches my eye.  I try to limit my spending, and was on a tight budget last weekend, but managed to find some great additions to my art stash.

Spools of silky thread: The original price on these was $1 each, but hubby haggled and talked the vendor down to both colors for $1. Score!  There were additional spools for sale (mostly in a deeper orange), but I limited myself to these two in the interest of economics and our limited storage space.


Vintage photos: I’m a sucker for vintage black and white photos, and happily pawed through a box of vintage photos at another stall.  I knew I had to limit myself, given my budget and my existing, well-developed collection of photos, and narrowed my selections down to six snapshots.  Hubby asked me how I choose the photos as I was looking, and I explained that I’m just drawn to some images more than others.  I also told him that I love finding photos of people of color.  Though I’m white, my family is a melting pot of different races, which I love.  Additionally, it’s harder to find vintage photos of non-Caucasian people so it’s especially fun when I do stumble across them.  The six photos I chose cost $2 total.


Zipper: I’ve come across some online tutorials for making roses out of zippers, and knew it was time for me to try making one when I found I could buy a zipper with chunky, metal teeth for a mere 25 cents.


Awl: (not shown) I found a small, wood-handled awl that will come in handy when poking, prodding, and piercing future artwork, and it was a bargain at $2.

It was a very satisfying morning: spending time with hubby, unearthing budget-friendly art supplies, enjoying the beautiful blue skies, and people watching.  I can’t wait to visit another swap meet – who knows what I’ll find!

Total spent on art supplies: $5.25

Rating: 6.0 on the Artistic Richter scale

Please post a comment on this post if you’d like to share some of your recent artistic experiences or your favorite flea market finds!

Warm regards,

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Webtastic! Some favorite sites…

Finding a great website can be like stumbling upon an unexpected treasure, and today I’m sharing a few of the sites and resources I treasure.  I’m including sites that cover a range of topics since my interests are rather varied, and hope some of them resonate with you, too.




Cynthia Shaffer

Cynthia is incredibly skilled at needle crafts (sewing, knitting, crochet) –  among other things – and just may be a creative genius.  Her blog and website are a real treat for us creative types!  Keep an eye out for her upcoming book, which will be out in early May. I got a sneak peek, and it’s gorgeous!

Craft Test Dummies

Jenny Barnett Rohrs’ site is an incredible resource for crafters.  Not only does she review crafting products, she shares craft projects and hosts some killer giveaways!


Jane Friedman

I follow Ms. Friedman on Twitter.  As the former publisher and editorial director of Writer’s Digest, she’s an incredible wealth of knowledge and is focused on the intersection of literature and media/technology.

Anne R. Allen

Ms. Allen, a Central Coast writer, is also a blogger and her posts are interesting, informative, and thought provoking.


Hilarious & SO Wrong!


Cake Wrecks

The Cake Wrecks tagline is “When professional cakes go horribly, hilariously wrong”, and some of these cakes have to be seen to be believed.  I’ve laughed until I’ve cried, and suspect you will, too!

Awkward Family Photos

These photos are terrible and wonderful all at the same time.  This site is a great way to get more laughs in your day!


Odds & Ends


New Dress a Day

The fabulous Marisa repurposes castoff clothing purchased for a song.  The transformations are fascinating!

Zen Habits

Leo Babauta urges his readers to follow the advice of Thich Nhat Hanh.  “Smile, breath, and go slowly.”  A great site to visit if you think you might need to slow down, simplify, or pare down your clutter.


Please feel free to post a comment and share a website you’re partial to – just keep it clean!  (wink)

Warm regards,

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Posted in art, art supplies, books, family, life in general, publishing, writing | Also tagged , , , , , , , 2 Comments