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Flaunting Flowers - Artisan Handmade Three for Thursday

 

 

"If we could see the miracle of a single flower clearly, our whole life would change" – Buddha


 

Spring is in full swing here in the Desert Southwest.  Since there was more rain than normal during the winter and on into spring, the flowering trees and the wildflowers, especially the poppies in the Franklin Mountains, have been spectacular.  The various cacti and succulents haven’t started blooming yet with all their sometimes garish colors, but they should be extra pretty, as well. This time of the year, my thoughts always turn to working in the flower beds, trying to decide where to put “just one more” plant.  Watching plants reawaken and start their flowering is indeed a miracle . . . and does change my life for the better.

 

With flowers in mind, I decided this week’s Artisan Handmade Three for Thursday would feature flowers.  Three floral inspired handmade pieces, which turned out featuring mostly pink flowers, were chosen from the shops of handmade artisan friends.  The artisans are: Jacki of Christie Cottage; Roxanne of watercolorsNmore; and me, Catherine of Shadow Dog Designs. I hope you enjoy the handmade beauties.  And be sure to visit the shops of the artists for even more gift ideas - for someone you love or for yourself.

 

 

 

 

Ms. Write Handwriting Service - A WONDERFUL Find!

 

 

A month or so ago, I received an extremely nice message on Twitter about how much someone loved a pair of my earrings.  I tweeted a message back thanking her, and, since she wasn’t anyone I recognized or followed, I checked her out . . . and ended up following her.  I also clicked on her website link and was fascinated by what I found. The lady who originally tweeted the kind words is named Michelle. She has a personal handwriting service, Ms. Write Handwriting Service, where she’ll write thank you cards, corporate letters and personal letters for you :  you supply the wording and she supplies the handwritten cards/letters, the envelopes, the stamps and even mails them for you!  Michelle's handwriting is absolutely beautiful, a flowing cursive that you don’t see much anymore (but you can also choose from several other styles).

A Melange of Handmade - Three for Thursday - June 20, 2019

 

This weeks's Three for Thursday is a melange of items.  Since I have an addiction to words, I wanted to give a brief etymology of the word melange.  The word, which rolls off the tongue to so beautifully, first is first found in French documents around the comes from the 15th century French word meler, meaning 'to mix, mingle."  Meler, in turn, came from the Old French meslance or meslinges (a set of diverse elements).  So, according to The Free Dictionary, the modern word means “a collection of various things.”  Which is the perfect definition of the variety of handmade items I found from artists and am sharing in this post:  The items featured are from three handmade artists:  beautiful original watercolor paintings from Roxanne of watercolorsNmore; fun and handy to have cards of various types from Jacki of Christie Cottage; and a selection of one of a kind handmade jewelry from me, Catherine of Shadow Dog Designs.

 

I hope you enjoy these picks.  And that you will visit the shops of the artists for more handmade beauties.

Summer Fun - Artisan Handmade Gifts

 

 

The first day of summer will be here before we know it.  This year, the first day of summer starts here in the Borderlands at 9:54 a.m. MDT on Friday, June 21.  Although, by that time, we’ll surely have had several days near triple digits or some 100+ degrees. But it’s a dry heat and doesn’t keep me from doing much outside as long as I have a wide brimmed hat on my head and plenty of water with me.

Beautifully Artisan Handmade - Three for Thursday

 

 

Two weeks have already flown . . . and it’s time for another Three for Thursday blog post.  Three wonderful handmade items from three different artists are featured. The artists highlighted this week are:  Colleen of Colleen Cornelius with a wide range of eye catching photographs; boho style jewelry by Kathy of KatsAllThat; and, unique art work by Sam of Shinrin Studio.  If something catches your eye, please be sure to click on the photo or the link below the picture to be taken to the item for more photos and information. I hope you enjoy the unique artisan handmade items featured below:

Happy Easter! - Wonderful Handmade Wednesday on Indiemade

 

 

 

Modern-day Easter is derived from two ancient traditions: one pagan and the other Judeo-Christian. Both pagans and Christians have celebrated death and resurrection themes following the spring equinox for millennia.  A majority of religious historians believe that many elements of the Christian observance of Easter were derived from earlier pagan celebrations.  The name “Easter” itself originated with the names of an ancient goddess.  The Venerable Bede, (672-735 CE), a Christian scholar, first mentioned in his book De Ratione Temporum that Easter was named after Eostre (a.k.a. Eastre). She was the Great Mother Goddess of the Saxon people in Northern Europe. The "Teutonic dawn goddess of fertility was also known as Ostare, Ostara, Ostern, Eostra, Eostre, Eastra and others.  

Second Page, Second Artisan Item - Wonderful Handmade Wednesday on Indiemade

 

 

 

What beautiful artisan handmade items are included in this blog post!  But, then, ALL the items included in my blogs the last two years have been beauties.  This edition of Wonderful Handmade Wednesday on Indiemade is a melange of items, a random choosing of the second item on the second page of the artist's shop.  I hope you enjoy the items featured.

Countdown to Mother's Day - Handmade Gifts - Week 2

 

 

Julie and Blu of Blue Morning Expressions are once again hosting the popular "Mother's Day Countdown” on their BluPrint blog.  Last year's Mother's Day Countdown 2016 was a resounding success so a 2017 version, which started last week, is up and running.  Mother's Day will be here before we all know it!  Now is the perfect time to start browsing gift ideas and buying that perfect gift(s) for your Mum.  Any one of the handmade (many of which are one of a kind) and vintage items shared this week are perfect.  Visit the shops of the artists featured and buy Mum something that was handmade from the heart or that will re-live as a vintage piece.

The Magical Color of Purple - Wonderful Handmade Wednesday on Indiemade

 

 

Since purple is a fairly rare color in nature, an almost magical aura has been associated to it throughout human history.  The first historical record of a purple dye, called Tyrian purple, indicates that it began to be manufactured in the Phoenician city of Tyre in the eastern Mediterranean in the 14th century BCE.  The dye was extracted from the glands of several types of shellfish, but especially the Murex brandaris.  The process to extract the dye took about three days.  Thousands of putrefied, crushed shellfish were left to bake in the sun.  Salt was then added and the mash of glands were boiled down.  (Can you imagine the overwhelming stench of the process!!!).  It took about 12,000 shellfish to extract 1.5 grams of the pure dye, barely enough to dye a single garment the size of a Roman toga.  In 301 A.D. during the reign of Roman Emperor Diocletian, one pound of purple dye cost 150,000 denarii or around three pounds of gold. This is the main reason the purple color was reserved for emperors or individuals with titles of royal authority.

Think Green for Artisan Christmas Gifts - Wonderful Handmade Wednesday on Indiemade

 

 

 

Red and green are colors that are closely associated with Christmas.  Last week I shared how red became a Christmas color.  You can read that post here:  Think Red for Artisan Christmas Gifts.  This week, green, the other Christmas color, is explored mainly through the symbolism of holly, mistletoe and evergreen trees.

 

The color green and its association with the time around Christmas has a pre-Christian origin, more specifically tied to the Winter Solstice.  Evergreen plants, like holly, mistletoe and pine, spruce or fir trees have been used for thousands of years to decorate and brighten up buildings during the long, dark, cold winter when life could be very tenuous.  Ancient peoples were scared of the short days and freezing nights and mistakenly believed that the Sun might disappear altogether. Evergreens reminded people that spring would come and that winter wouldn't last forever.  Historical records show that the Romans wove wreaths of holly to hang on their walls and doors to celebrate the winter solstice / Saturnalia. They also exchanged evergreen branches as a sign of good luck. The ancient Egyptians would bring green date palm branches into their homes during their mid- winter festivals as a symbol of "life triumphant over death." To the ancient people, the color green represented life, nature, peace, eternity and the hope of the future.  

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