It was love at first sight. I went back to visit her for 3 days in a row and called twice to make sure this fabulous green bike hadn't been sold. And then I remembered the wise old saying, "if you love something, set it free," which I did...for an entire day. But then I got nervous, called the antique shoppe back, and had them put a hold sign on it. I scrounged together every penny I had, decided I could live off the box of pasta I have in the back of the cupboard and tap water for the next week and bought my groovy dream bike. Fantastic.

I asked the cashier what she thought I should name it (as I was shaking in excitement) and she kind of stared at me blankly. The fun lady behind me in line showed a little more enthusiasm about my purchase, told me she had a similar bike and offered to take a picture of me. And just like that my new bike had a name: Trudy. Named after the fun lady with the purple pants.
Trudy and Janis become friends:Oh, I heart this bike so. We are going to be soooooo happy together. :o)


Don't worry about a thing...

Being in Asheville this season has been a beautiful experience in such a different way for me than in previous visits. It has come with a fair share of trials and tribulations, scattered with bursts of creativity, inspiration and concentration on who I want to be. It's been a bit of a roller coaster, but I have made it work. I have had to make a housing shift, lost 2 part time jobs to business downsizing (which I thought *might* be a sign that I am not supposed to work for anyone else?), and have been happily living out of a teeny orange room on the west side, finding clarity in what once was cloudy to me. I know where I want to be and am excited to get back to NH to keep burying my creative roots in New England soil. Money has been tight, but I have received official confirmation from my (fantastic!) accountant that I am in fact doing everything right, following my first full year of self employment. Woot. *Insert sigh of relief here*
So I have had to make simpler choices and work with what I have. This has forced me to really get down to the nitty gritty of who I am, and have come to realize more clearly what I want in life. And y'know...call me crazy (go ahead!), but when you are walking down the sidewalk on a sunny day reflecting upon these things and you stumble upon THIS adhered to the pavement, you just have to smile and think for *one second* that it was put there for you.

Homemade ceramic tile says 'It'll be fine.' I think so.


My dream bike.

I was toolin' around the Screen Door here in Asheville (my FAVORITE crafty shoppe!) and I stumbled upon this beauty. Woah. Check OUT this thing. $72.00 USD. I want it. Oh, how I want this bike. Not sure if she'd fit in the back of Janis on my trek back to NH, but I'd be willing to tie her to the top and take the backroads! :o)


New homemade crafty goodies.

I can't stop. I am on a crafty rampage, getting ready for the reopening of my shop. I am finally tapping into the pages and pages of sketchbook ideas I have been filing away, and finding my way to the bottom of the bins of crap I hoard, thinking, "someday I'll do something with this." Here's an example of one of those ideas. I made these cute headbands from my old wallets, sweaters and vintage buttons. I'm not that much of a headband wearer, but I love this one. Kind of reminds me of a roaring 20's vintage hairpiece. I think it could pair well with some finger curls and fishnets. :o)


But in the meantime....

...I have been pimpin' Janis out. Yesterday was so sunny that I decided to show Janis some love and paint her plain black tire cover. This is one of my new owl designs (which is actually going to be a new t-shirt design this year at the boutique!) The next owner of this van is in for such a treat! It's not everyday that you come across such a sweet ride, complete with murals, a sticker collection, vintage leather seating AND a rockin' tire cover. I just hope she goes to a good home...one that loves her for who she is!


Time for a change?

While my self-employed earnings have been not been*quite* as much as I would be making at my last cubicle day job, the completion of my 2009 taxes (yessssss!) have proven that I can in fact do this. 2010 is going to be a smarter year for me. I now know what I need to itemize, write-off, budget and pay annually. I feel this year I can make better choices. And while I do LOVE my van (Janis), she may need to get traded in for something smarter in the near future. I'm thinking something that gets good gas milage, has 4WD (oh how I have missed that...the luxury of being able to visit my friends up on the hill in the wintery weather!) and can of course fit all of my crap (I mean art) in it when I travel and go to art shows. I have always loved, loved, LOVED the Jeep Cherokee, and think back fondly on my time with Jeffery (my 1994 beauty) that I had a short relationship with. I loved that it was green and looked like a box on wheels. I liked that it only played tapes, had a stick on the floor and the windows whistled on the highway. But it may be time to even upgrade from that. I'm thinking Honda Element. Couldn't you just see me in this sweet lil' ride? Suggestions, recommendations and offers to sell me your vehicle are all welcome. :o)


What a hoot!

I had a vivid, crazy crafty themed dream some weeks ago, like I do most nights (last night I was playing badminton with curling ribbon spools!) which involved me making owls pillows. I woke up, drew the pattern I made (in my sleep?) and got to work. I made these 12 little buddies out of completely recycled materials (pillowcases, vintage fabrics and felts). Modeling with the little owlies are my roommate Erica and her cute lil' dog, Star. :o)



Everyone asks what the heck the GWCC is. I have a group of friends here who are addicts like me and we meet there in the afternoons like its a secret tree fort. I try and tell people about it, or bring my friends when they come to visit. It's hard to explain...you just have to experience it. The Goodwill Clearance Center: you never know what you are going to get. It's a recently expanded warehouse of bins, bins and more bins. These giant blue bins on wheels line the floor as people wander around with numbered blue shopping carts, sifting through the bins for the ultimate thrift store score. Each hour, they change out the bins as people line up for the new ones to come out, like a herd of cows to some feed. It's unlike anything I have every experienced. It's an every day yard sale. And every time I go there, I think, 'Man, my Noni would have loved this place!'


C'mon Spring! :o)

I have to say, as much as I loooooovvvvveeee Asheville, the weather has been kind of terrible this season. There has been a scattering of sunshiney days, but they have been massively outnumbered by New Hampshire-esque, blizzardy, snowy ones. But, it's all about making the most of it! And as the sun is shining and it is a near 50 degrees out today (woot!), I think I will post the last of my wintery pics, and then store them far, far away. Most of these were taken when Jim came to visit me in February. (Chainsaw: did YOU grafitti this wall?) Fig snow art.

I have to say that while Janis does okay in the snow, she does prefer the springtime. :o)


Sew much fun!

I have ALSO been on a sewing rampage. Unable to find a groovy tote to carry my laptop around town (AND protect it!) for reasonable monies, I decided to just go ahead and make one. This cute lil' bag is made from 2 pillow cases, an old holey t-shirt and some stuffing. I have gotten tons of compliments on it in coffee shoppes, and since it was so easy and fun to make, I am going to sew a few more for my shoppe. Earth friendly laptop bags...coming to VeggieArtGirl this spring. :o)

This cute lil' buddy is Star, my roommate's doggie. She really loved my new bag. :o)


Peace. Love. Etsy.

I have been painting and painting and painting these days. A combination of my fueled excitement for the reopening of my store and the unpredicatable cold weather has brought me down to my lil' basement studio with a space heater for some creation station time. (Anyone remember that show? Creation Station? I will defintely be YouTubing that later). I have been challenging myself in many ways and growing in technique and style. The body of work I am going to be hanging at the shop (and featuring at a few local boutiques and shoppes in New England) is primarily my classic handpainted signs. But I have found different types of wood, salvaged pieces, am shakin up my color palette and new ideas are flowing. Here's a little sampling of what's in store. Literally. :o)

This piece is one of my favorite quotes of all time, handpainted on a vintage children's xylophone.

An old cabinet door now tells a story:
If you want to see more of what I have been creating, check out my etsy shoppe: http://www.etsy.com/shop/VeggieArtGirl Enjoy the new naughty section! More coming soon!

A chicken poem.

Happy, happy crazy chickens,
out the back door.
Happy, happy crazy chickens
live on dirt floor.
Happy, happy crazy chicken
was once dinosaur.
Happy, happy crazy chickens,
I sleep no more.

But thanks for the eggs, little buddies.


Anam Cara Awesomeness.

I have been working with Anam Cara (Celtic translation: "soul friend") Theatre Co. here in Asheville for about a year down, helping with design projects and such. They just celebrated their first birthday on Saturday with cupcakes and live music at Firestorm Cafe and are on the brink of getting non-profit status. This company is different than most theatre groups, because they try to fuse as many aspects of the arts into each gathering as possible. From music to visual art to theatrical arts and everything in between, it is a fun and diverse group of people who come together with great pride for what the group is doing and promote social awareness.
March 13th will be a HUGE fundraiser at the Garage at Biltmore. We're calling it "The Gathering at the Garage" and if you don't have plans, you should mark your calendar. The goal of the evening is to not only raise enough moola to afford non-profit status (through silent auctions, raffles, t-shirt sales and more), but to have loads and loads of fun! Come join!