Saturday, December 25, 2010

Christmas Wishes

Lovely this Christmas morning to have sunlight streaming in the windows. After days of rain and grey dampness, finally the blue sky and rays of light were just in time for celebration. Even after having spent 16 years in Southern California, I still find it hard to really believe it is Christmas without the snow and cold that I grew up with in the midwest. My daughter has made replacement snow to decorate the house with hanging cut paper flakes, all unique and different. I think they are my favorite decoration this year.

Don't you have some favorite ornaments or decorations that you get out just for this special time... something from your past or childhood that puts a smile on your face? Every year my sister and I put milk and cookies out for Santa, using the little Santa boot mugs. Now my children use the same Santa boot to leave the milk or eggnog out. Amazing how a little red ceramic cup holds so much memory and is so cherished.
Enjoy this time and having traditions... tiny little memories can stay in your heart for a lifetime.


Thursday, November 25, 2010

My Modern Family Thanksgiving Treat!

I was watching one of my favorite shows, Modern Family, last night with my daughter when she started screaming with excitement. There on the screen was Cameron holding a tray for tea and the teapot and mugs were my design, Modern Garden! Wahooooo! I am so thrilled to have my dishware from Certified International included in the so very stylish home of Cam and Mitchell. Thanks so much Modern Family!!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Not too early to plan for New Years!

I was excited to see this ad for Unique Industries, Inc. partyware with my New Years design! There are square plates, cups, napkins, and glitter accessories in the "Bubbly New Years" collection.
So start making those resolutions and plans! Holiday season is upon us!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Shopping Research- Modern Natural Mix

Macy's/Marshall Fields on State Street in Chicago...remembering my vacation and shopping...

More dishware and tablescapes I like. One of the things that make these table settings so nice is the design plans include a strong voice in the central light fixture. Like the pink setting I showed earlier, this modern table has a great light with the globe of branches embracing it. The branches make a great pattern of light and shaddow on the ceiling.

I grew up with numerous Bertoia butterfly chairs and the armature is beautiful. I've never thought of using them for end chairs at a dining table and they make a great end statement. I love this mid-century modern styled table for it's modern clean lines, various textures, and mix of metal and natural materials. This table highlights Lenox's Tin Can Alley dishes.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Modern Garden grows at Ralphs

My friend Corine sent me a text with a picture of my dishes at the Ralph's grocery in Calabasas CA! Of course I had to go see for myself- what a great display they did! Thanks Ralphs! This is one of those moments of happiness, knowing I am doing work that makes me so happy AND I get to share it with others... even better.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Greetings Today!

Thanks Jeanetta for spotting my cards and letting me know!
Some of my new greeting cards by Marian Heath are available at CostPlus World Market. The new summer line has 9 cards including birthday, comfort, friendship, congratulations sentiments. Look for the little bluebird of happiness!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Shopping Research- Pink Party

Macy's/Marshall Fields on State Street.
Dishware. Beautiful tables designed to create atmosphere and celebrate the occasion.
I'm in heaven. Shopping research has begun...

I love theses Lenox dishes! I wish I had designed them myself and they actually do remind me of some other dishware designs I have. Lovely modern leaves sparkling in platinum. Pattern, borders, so yummy! These dishes look great with any color and I love the mix of this contemporary line with the pink feminine petal fabric for the table cloth. The fabric-draped chandelier sets such a dramatic statement. Just lovely.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Marshall Fields on State

I have a unique way of traveling and sightseeing. It includes visiting stores and turning over countless products to see who manufactures it and who designed it. I know I am not alone and other licensing artists do the same thing. We are like a secret cult of the product-checkers. Beautiful displays, store windows, colorful environments... it is all inspiring on my trips. Ah, new cities, new research!

In Chicago, one of my most favorite places to go for "shopping research" is the Marshall Fields building on State Street. I know, it is now Macy's, but that particular building will always be Marshall Fields to me with the signature clocks on the corners and spectacular architectural environment inside. I used to shop there quite a bit since I worked two blocks away at WLS TV, the abc station. The glass and mosaic ceilings are spectacular and shopping there feels more special and unique. You can still get Frango mints (okay, I love the giant flowers in the display cases...chocolate and flowers...who needs anything else?) and eat at the Walnut Room. On vacation, we met my friend Susan for lunch on the seventh floor and looked out at the busy, bustling streets below. This will always be one of my favorite shopping places.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Summer in Chicago

Summer vacation. Chicago. Family and friends and seeing the city.

It has been numerous years since I have been back and it was great to see my mom, sister, brother-in-law, niece and nephew. It's been too long. We had a lovely time visiting family, taking a break, watching the kids discover the excitement of fireflies and the drama of lightning and thunderstorms. Southern California kids miss out on some things like a white Christmas and the special crisp smell of Fall in the Midwest and East, humidity and rainstorms in the summer, lush green everywhere. And because we live across the country from our families, our kids have a very different experience than we had growing up. They see relatives every couple of years vs every week or month. Family trips are about rediscovering each other and enjoying being together for a few precious days.

It was especially sentimental for me to go into the city for a couple days and show my kids where I lived, things I did, what life was like for me when I lived in Chicago. It's been almost 16 years since I left that spectacular city to try out a new life in Los Angeles. I love my life in California. But it was also wonderful to remember why I loved living in Chicago. As bittersweet as it sometimes was, the eight years I lived there were full of self-discovery, heartbreak, adventure, friendship, growth, dating and love, more heartbreak, tons of work and finding myself. It was about growing up and my twenties. It is a significant part of the journey to who I am now.

Some of what I old neighborhood of Lakeview and Ann Sather's restaurant for brunch with giant, gooey cinnamon rolls. We saw a Cubs game at Wrigley field (Cubs won!) and went to the Lincoln Park Zoo and Conservatory. German food at The Bergoff downtown. Shopping on Michigan Avenue. Busses and "L" trains (the mosaic with modern faces on the train is from the Belmont Station). The old Marshall Field's building in the Loop. What a beautiful and unique city, vibrant and full of character. When I lived there, Grant Park did not have Millenium Park with the new sculptures and music pavillion by Frank Gehry. The Cloud Gate sculpture (we like to call the giant silver jellybean) is fascinating. You just can't stop staring at it and the reflections. I love the optical illusions you get with warped reflection upon warped reflection. At The Crown Fountain we waited for the water to spit out with children laughing and squealing under the arch of water. Magical summer in the city...

I may be a California girl now, but I still love you Chicago.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Seize the Day calendars have arrived!

Just wanted to share...I'm so excited that my Seize the Day wall calendar is now out in Barnes and Noble stores! Also coming out for the 2011 calendar year will be the Seize the Day theme with different images and inspirations in a mini calendar format and a daily calendar.

I am so fortunate to work with the people at Sellers Publishing on this project. It has been a wonderful experience with encouraging and professional people who are so good at what they do. I am truly grateful for having the opportunity to share my art and thoughts through this medium. This is the type of work that fills me up with happiness and I hope it brings that to others.

Already busy on the next year's calendar...keep an eye out and seize the day!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Licensing International Expo 2010

Just returned this past week from the Licensing Expo in Las Vegas. My agent Julie Newman, shown here and with Tiffany Cullinan, had a fantastic booth that I just loved! It was a fresh and inviting space and a beautiful structure that was lovely to have meetings in. After numerous years of exhibiting on my own, I really appreciate all the work, thought, time and preparation that goes into getting ready and doing a show.

I had some good meetings with companies I currently work with as well as met some new ones with great potential. An unexpected brainstorming session was the highlight of one of the never know when and where the creative idea grows wings and takes flight. Some of the best parts of exhibiting are the chances to meet other artists and designers and this trip offered a number of new contacts. My agent now also represents Jessie Steele, the brand of wonderfully chic hostess aprons, and it was lovely to spend some time with one of the founders, Claire Steele. And how fitting that Monday night, as I watched "The Bachelorette" on tv, there was one of the Jessie Steele aprons in the barbeque date scene! Another artist I was thrilled to meet at the show was the tremendously talented Kathy Davis. I admire her work and ability to reach so many people with her beautiful designs.

So home again. My head is full of thoughts, notes, ideas. Much to do and it's time to get back to work!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Norma's Quilt

Thank you so much Norma Carter for sharing this image with me. Norma's quilt top is pieced with fabrics from Deco Park and I am so excited to see it! I love the way the large panels show off the fabrics. It is an incredible thrill to see things that people have made with your designs and so touching when they share it with me.
Thank you Norma!

Friday, March 5, 2010


I wanted to share some pictures from the Certified International showroom at the Atlanta Gift Show. This was such a highlight of the trip for me, walking into the showroom and seeing my new collections with them on an endcap and center display table. It was a moment when I felt my heart racing with excitement as I saw the dishes for the first time myself.

I've always wanted to design for dishware. I love setting a beautiful table with personality and color. I like all things 'kitchen'- especially a good meal! My sister and I used to regularly check the sale area at Hudson's for our favorite dishes on clearance. Then we would piece together place settings from the bargains we would find. I think it feels festive and fun to have different moods to my plates for entertaining and eating. I've had to purge out many dishware collections through the years due to lack of storage. But now I think it's time to splurge and have fun with them again!!

The new collections I have with Certified are Modern Garden and Vino/Appetizers. Can't wait to get my own sets and toast to life, color, flowers and friends!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Atlanta Gift Show- Gregg Gifts

Meet "Bee Happy" with Gregg Gifts! The Atlanta Gift Show was my first chance to see the pieces all together- tote bag, bible cover, coin purse, ceramic keepsake box, hanging plaque and mug. The bee is embroidered on the cloth pieces to give it that added pop. And the colors on the ceramics are rich and vibrant! The people at Gregg Gifts have all been so nice to work with- they have such great quality and beautiful products. I'm honored to be included with the wonderful range of artists they work with.

And here are two of my garden flags, also with Gregg Gifts. What a happy day to see these in their showroom!

Atlanta Gift Show

Wow! New year and it feels great already! The holiday season feels like a blur, partly because the time was filled with kids home all day for the winter break (3 weeks off school) and my husband with vacation time and I was trying to get ready for 2 shows in January while doing a freelance project. Very full December. Still, I got to see some great movies (Avatar, It's Complicated, Julie & Julia, Alvin the Squeakquel) and spend some delicious time with my family.

So into January and a new decade. It started off with a great trip to Atlanta for the Atlanta Gift Show. It was my first time ever in Atlanta and on my visit they have a freak winter storm, complete with snow, more snow and iced-over roads. And cold...yes, I am a wimpy Southern California girl and remember clearly why I live someplace warm now. But it was a lovely city and a fun trip. My agent had a booth in the License and Design section of the Mart and I really enjoyed meeting some other artists who I know from our licensing community through shows or online forums. A couple of them shown here...Ellen Crimi-Trent and Carol Eldridge and one with my good friend Darci Phillips of Phillips Allrich. I am constantly impressed with the creative ideas and enthusiasm of the artists I meet through this work. They are an immensely talented group of people.

More to come on Atlanta...dishware and giftware!