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Preview: Nestle And Soar -- in folk art, in spirit, in life

Nestle And Soar -- Elegant Eco-Chic Fiber Art for your Home

Updated: 2018-03-05T09:43:02.221-07:00


Are you a Creative Woman of Wellness?


Creating health is a topic of widespread interest in America, and I am passionate about both of these human endeavors: Creativity and Health. Perhaps you believe that the state of your health and wellness can be attributed to your DNA more so than any personal decisions you made today? If health is something we are born with because of our fantastic genetic gifts, I am probably going to be generally healthy until I reach my mid-sixties: at least that is how it worked out for my relatives. But what if that doesn't sound good enough to me? What if I would truly like to live the life of a vibrant woman well into my 90s? Do you think I can? Here is what I've been up to lately. I have joined forces with both the Western medical and the Alternative Health Care communities, studying what each field can offer my personal goals in 2015. I have added to that effort another valuable degree to my education, that of Certified Holistic Health Coach and Drugless Practitioner. In the past year I have gone deep within my own personal and professional dreams and now I take 100% responsibility for my health behaviors. By doing all this, I am creating a life that far exceeds my genetic makeup, and I am also creating a community of other enthusiastic women who also want to go above and beyond their DNA. This group is called We Are Women At Wellness! Vibrant living at every age!From my artistic life in beautiful Colorado, where playing with fiber art and creating private commission art for others has been my focus for almost a decade, now I am using my creativity in new ways, and I am loving every minute of it! I am passionate about my ability to choose the vibrancy of my daily life. I believe that we all have enormous power to make choices and think thoughts that create for us resilience, healing energies, and nourishing experiences that both keep us young and also improve the lives of those around us!Now that I am a practicing Holistic Health Coach in Colorado, my fiber art time in the studio is often spent teaching others to use their hands, their eye for color combinations, and their sewing skills to enjoy the crossroads between Creative Play and Stress Relief. Have you learned to use your creative hobbies to feel that bliss that surrounds people as they focus on creating beautiful things? As this lovely new year continues, I may slowly ease away from this BlogSpot to another that I am putting my attention toward. That decision is still in the works! But I do know that I would love to have you join me in the shift that is happening in my professional offerings. Please check out all the new and valuable resources I have gathered for women who seek wellness. And let me know if there is a topic in this theme that is of particular interest to you! I'd love to hear from you.Warmly,Georgianne HollandCertified Holistic Health CoachHolland Health CoachingWheat Ridge, ColoradoWe are Women at [...]

Step Twins -- Two Mediums/Same Design/One Artist


They look the same to me!I believe they called it dusting off my brain. I was being encouraged to try something new as a means of self expression, and I was holding back. My familiar fiber art skills are so comfortable to me that I can sometimes, when I am felting late at night, almost feel like I am creating in my sleep. "Dust off my brain!" seems a bit drastic, doesn't it? Perhaps I am relating more to the popular "Step out of your comfort zone". Whatever happens to motivate me, this new series has already been named: Step Twins.A new inventory of artistic supplies.When you think about identical twins, of course there is only one mother involved. So in this creativity-expanding exercise, I am playing the role of the Mother/Artist. Pairs of objects will be created in this series of 16 pieces in my studio, and these are what I am referring to as the Twins. So there will be eight sets of Twins when the series is complete. Any guesses as to how long this might take me...assuming I won't get away with working while sleepy?My brain is feeling fresh as I contemplate that each set of twins will be comprised of works that will, from a distance, look the same. As you approach them, the texture of each piece starts to pop, and then, magically, as you step front and center before them, you realize that one of the works in each pair is a painting and the other is a fiber art piece. Step Twins: the same mother but very different genetics.I started with a painting and now I am collecting the wool.In my studio today I have begun playing with Twin Set #1. It might be fun to begin some of these pairs with the painting first (which is what I've done today), and then on other occasions, I will start with the fiber art. This will truly stretch my skills and cause me to wake up my process, don't you think? What kind of challenge are you looking at for the balance of 2014 when it comes to your creativity? May I make a suggestion? Perhaps you should dust off your brain.Please check back from time to time for an update on this series. I'm excited to share it with you!Thanks for stopping by,Georgianne[...]

Textile Art vs. Fiber Art -- Which words do you use?


Work by Nancy CrowI have long defined my work as fiber folk art and it is usually a comfortable way for me to talk about what I do in my studio. Because I communicate with my collectors over the Internet, I have learned that art lovers in different parts of the United States and abroad use other words to describe the kind of objects/art I create. Outside of the conversation about the relative value of art as opposed to craft, which is a subject that often carries a bit of tension, I've been thinking about the choice of calling myself a fiber artist over a similar term, textile artist. Have you ever thought about a geographical or a perceived sophistication difference in the words used?In common usage today, any type of artwork which uses pliable, organic elements as the major material can be labeled as either fiber art or textile art, and I notice when I do an Internet search that a large variety of examples come up when either term, fiber or textile, is used. However, I am noticing that there seems to be a difference between artworks that are created using traditional needlework techniques like stitching, weaving, spinning, felting, or quilting and those artworks that are made using a more expansive toolkit, like combining fiber with other mixed-media, adhesives, heated tools, or non-organic structural elements. Another clear reference to the word textile can be seen in ancient textiles to those of the 21st century, where a lineage of makers/artists created yardage of fabric, each baring the fingerprint of the artist.Work by Miriam SchapiroHow does any of this history or word play make a difference in my profession? I believe that the way in which a person thinks about him or herself is a foundational element to whatever it is they do to earn a living. I am a professional artist, meaning my creative process is undertaken in a manner that addresses my economic goals and traditional business practices. When I use certain words to describe my artwork, words that feel apologetic or self-limiting, this has an impact on not only my own self expression but also on the manner in which the public views my work. I do sometimes feel hesitant to tell others I am a fiber artist, as if I am a poor cousin visiting the art world. Does this ever happen to you?I believe that the art community, and especially the textile art community, has a strong heritage of skills that are passed down through both professional communities as well as domestic circles, and my work as an artist in in keeping with those who came before me. That means I can stand with some of my favorite artists who broke free of traditional and perhaps limiting art world boxes and now represent innovation in the fiber and textile arts--favorite artists like Nancy Crow and Miriam Schapiro come to mind. Work by Georgianne HollandWhen you consider making, buying or talking about fiber art, I hope that you also hold an expansive view about what it can mean within the larger artistic community. Beyond gender, beyond education, beyond cultural boundaries, there is a space for creativity using pliable organic fibers that speaks to humans in a very textural, seductive and accessible way. I have grown to think highly of all of this manner of communicating beauty and ideas, as I'm sure you have as well, and it is my hope that others will also help us sing the praises of creativity, using whichever words and mediums  ring most true.Thanks for stopping by,Georgianne Find my work at[...]

Decoupage Anyone?


My light table decoupaged as a cheerful patchwork!I love Mod Podge! If you know what I mean, then you are likely ready to tackle another decoupage project. I have used a variety of glues and techniques to decorate the surface of many objects over the years. I've embellished large pieces of furniture all the way down to teeny tiny balsa wood circles. It is a fun way to make my home decor a one-of-a-kind piece.One thing I have never done is decoupage the backside of clear glass trays, allowing my art of choice be showcased in this DIY upgrade. Have you tried this yet? I found an artist named John Derian who makes glue and botanical images look classy on the wall, and with only a few dollars invested in supplies. This is a great home decor bargain!STEP ONE Locate a copyright-free image of your choice in the size that will fit on the back of your glass tray. The folks at Behrenberg Glass sell a variety of tray sizes.Places in the Home TraySTEP TWO Clean the back of your glass tray with window cleaner, wiping to remove any residue. After it dries completely, sponge brush a think layer of Mod Podge over the entire tray back. Place your image, right side down, on top of the Mod Podge. Quickly flip the tray over to make sure the image is centered as you like it. Smooth the paper against the glass, then place the tray back side up on a clean work surface. With a cylindrical object, like a clean wine cork, roll out any air bubbles until the paper fully molds to the glass. Dry for 30 minutes.STEP THREE Brush a thin coat of Mod Podge onto the back of the tray, from edge to edge. Place a clean white sheet of paper onto the glue, flush against the back of the image you already glued there. Smooth it with your fingers and roll out any air bubbles, as with the first layer. Dry for 30 minutes.STEP FOUR Cut away any excess paper around the tray edges with a craft knife. You may want to cut away a thin line all around the edge of the glass. That way, you can in a later step, apply a paint color that from the front of the piece, will look like a colorful edge treatment. After your trimming is complete, seal the back side of this white paper layer with a thin coat of Mod Podge and a sponge brush. Dry for 30 minutes.YouTube has many decoupage tutorials.STEP FIVE When you tray is completely dry, paint the tray's back side with an acrylic color of your choice. This is when any cut away edge around the white paper will sport a color that will show through on the front of your piece.I am having fun going through my own catalog of nature, bird, tree and flower images, looking for a few ideal decoupaged tray choices. I think we all know that there will be birds involved in the end!Thanks for stopping by,Georgianne P.S. I would love it if you'd follow my blog and share it with your friends. It is my goal to surround myself with people who love textiles, art, creativity, vibrant living, colorful home decor, healthy food, loving friends and inspiration! Best wishes, Georgianne - See more at: I would love it if you'd follow my blog and share it with your friends. It is my goal to surround myself with people who love textiles, art, creativity, vibrant living, colorful home decor, healthy food, loving friends and inspiration! Best wishes, Georgianne - See more at: I would love it if you'd follow my blog and share it with your friends. I am inspired by this community of creative, passionate, and friendly women! Best wishes, Georgianne[...]

Artists' Unhealthiest Habit and How to Stand Up to It


I have some NEAT advice for all my fellow artists, as well as my charming friends who: love to read, love to relax in their porch swing, are computerized office workers, or those who love to take long road trips. This advice is perfect for all of us who lead lives primarily from the seated position. Stand Up for your Health!Two recent studies show that being sedentary for long stretches might be one of the unhealthiest things we do each day -- even if we regularly exercise. Guilty!The second we sit down, three important things stop or slow down in our body: the calories we burn, our enzyme activity (digestion), and electrical activity in the leg muscles shut off. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the average American spends 9.3 hours each day sitting. As an artist who creates behind a sewing machine and operates an online boutique, I am certain I meet or exceed this statistic.What is my NEAT advice for everyone who thinks their chair is the best place on earth? NEAT is an acronym for Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis, a term used by James Levine, MD, PhD, for all the incidental movement you do throughout the day that is not considered formal exercise. I believe that my smart phone is my greatest advocate in this goal to increase my movement throughout the day. I set my timer to ring every 60 minutes with the song Happy by Pharrel Williams. Have you ever tried to not move around when this song is playing? It has become the cue in my fiber art studio to stand up, dance around, and shake my backside. This is a healthy and silly prompt to reinvigorate my circulation.Here are some more NEAT ways to get moving:Strap on a fitness-tracking device. I use a BodyMedia armband to keep track of how much I move each day. It is incredibly motivating to me!Watch TV while doing chores. I fold clothes, dust my furniture, and go up and down stairs throughout commercial breaks. I don't feel like I am missing any plot points...heck, does TV even have a plot anymore?Learn a new hobby. I've gone old-school and am taking up again some of the playground favorites of my youth. I am determined to relearn how to jump rope! Yes, think Mohammad Ali and his quick-step jump rope training. I especially want to master those awesome cross overs and double jumps!Give up a few conveniences. Operating a fiber art studio is a physical job. There is a lot of moving around, heavy lifting and bending/twisting action. To make sure my body is not sedentary for long stretches of time in the studio, I have learned to be a little less efficient with my seated tasks and instead, add in bouts of action throughout the day. Is it inconvenient to interrupt a lengthy machine-quilting session with cleaning duties? Yes. Does it decrease my risk of future cardiovascular disease? Yes.Let's all stand up for good health!Thanks for stopping by,GeorgianneP.S. I would love it if you'd follow my blog and share it with your friends. It is my goal to surround myself with people who love textiles, art, creativity, vibrant living, colorful home decor, healthy food, loving friends and inspiration! Best wishes, Georgianne[...]

"Oh, it was nothing" and other ways to Celebrate your Success


Many of the women I know are quiet about their accomplishments. Ask them how they managed to pull together their company's most profitable project in three years and I am likely to hear that it's all in the teamwork. Do you know women like this who feel more comfortable shining a light on others rather than verbalize their own achievements? In the fiber art community of my profession, female artists often explain their amazing needle art expertise by pointing out that their mother, grandmother and aunts all inspired them with their simple homemaking skills like sewing clothes or embroidering tea towels. I know how this works because I have done it myself. The real hero in our life always seems to be someone else.American women are often raised to be polite, humble and modest, and this leads women to view accepting praise as a form of bragging. Are we selling ourselves short? In order to deflect a robust statement about the value of our accomplishments, do we have to engage in a version of negative self talk? "Oh, it was nothing" may sound humble, but does it actually undermine our confidence or demotivate our future efforts? I believe that all people, male and female alike, should practice a few techniques to celebrate success so that their full participation in life is acknowledged and their anticipation of future success is enjoyed!Awesome Efforts deserve Vibrant Recognition1. Pat someone else on the back. Because I am an artist and so enjoy looking at art, there is not a week that goes by when I cannot find a fellow artist who has made something that inspires me. When I contact them and offer my sincere praise, you might think I am doing this for their benefit. That is only half of the story. Talking about others' accomplishments helps normalize the behavior, making it even more likely that I will mindfully appreciate my own victories.2. Take a trip down memory lane. At the end of the week, after you have given your daily life your best shot, take a quiet moment to review your actions. Think about three specific ways your accomplishments made a positive difference in this world. Thinking about specific actions like this requires your rational brain to do more of the thinking work than your emotional brain, which means that you can more easily override your early polite-girl training to be humble and quiet about awesome abilities. Luxuriate in your thoughts of contribution.3. Practice asking for what you want. We've all thought it from time to time. Women who are blunt when asking for stuff get called not-so-nice names. This cultural habit does not serve us well, and even keeps us from verbalizing our needs. If something you want is related to an accomplishment from your past, say stellar performance on the job, how hard is it for you to speak up and ask for an appropriate reward? Have you ever felt passive about life as you wait and hope for the acknowledgement you deserve? I know I have. It almost seems like praise from an authority figure or another person whose opinion I trust (like my husband), is something that should come my way unbeckoned in order for it to be legitimate. Here's the skill I am practicing to boost my confidence in this situation: ask for advice. "I am trying to figure out the best way to be included in the Main Street Art Festival in September. Do you have any advice for me?" This approach allows me to get closer to asking directly for what I want, and every step in that direction increases my chances of getting what I want more often.4. Ritualized Mini Celebrations. Are you the kind of friend who notices when your girlfriend's child receives an award? Do you call her up and help her feel special about her special little girl? Why is it easier to get pumped up about another person's success than it is to get pumped up about your own? Jessi L. Smith, Ph.D. says it is due to what's called "negativity bias," which causes our brains to look at what goes wrong befor[...]

Average Age of American Widow is 55, and other Shocking Travel News


Are you the kind of wife who makes plans for retirement vacations? If you are any one's wife at all, and you are still happy to explore the world in your 50s, a few extravagant vacations can likely come to mind. I know they do with me! That is why I read with shock the statistic in Parade Magazine's recent issue that the average age of widowhood in the United States is 55. I am not ready to retire yet (thus elaborate travel is still in the planning stage), and my 55th birthday is a few months away, but this piece of trivia really got my attention. I decided to do a little research to see if this statistic was real, and I did find some governmental statistics that quoted figures of "average age of widowhood" at 55 to 58 years old. I think we need to talk.Why does this headline get my attention, and perhaps yours as well? I have been in the process of implementing a Live a Vital Life in Our 90s Protocol at the Holland House since 2008! That was the year I made up my mind that with specific lifestyle choices and putting my growing health knowledge into action, I would be able to live a vibrant life well past 90. In fact, this little "program" of mine has snowballed into a full-fledged career as a Holistic Health Coach! It is just fascinating to me how the simple choices I make every day can add years to my life as well as life to my years. My husband has enjoyed the lifestyle changes that have progressively happened in our home for the past six years, and his health has never been stronger. Each book I read on the topic of longevity and wellness has a magical way of ending up in his reading stack, and we are having lively discussions about all the pros and cons of expert advice and the latest health and wellness research results. I truly believe that my husband and I will outlive the statistics and dance at our anniversary party in 2050.If I think about all the ways in which we have improved or tweaked our daily choices to live longer and with more vitality, I would have to claim the following as the changes that make my Top Ten list. How many of these efforts are part of your healthy lifestyle?TOP TEN WAYS TO LIVE LONG AND LIKE IT1. Be an Artist   Creativity is a healing human endeavor and expanding our vocabulary by expressing ourselves with our art is a superb way to stay young. Do you believe that your creativity is valuable? There are as many ways to be artistic as their are people on this planet.2. Move to Monaco   Did you know that the average life expectancy in Monaco is 89.68 years? I am thinking of adding this destination to my retirement travel plans. I want to see first hand some of these vibrant folks!3. Choose Wonderful Friends   The feelings of isolation will age the human spirit almost as fast as overeating donuts. I use the word Wonderful to be crystal clear about my feelings regarding Ruthless or Apathetic friends, whom I plan to avoid.4. Cook with Joy   This lifestyle choice has morphed into a larger effort which is giving us great results, and that is to cook whole foods with joy. The energetics of eating mostly produce and making 90% of our food at home is a lovely habit. I also feel joyful every time I see my husband chopping salad vegetables. 5. Buy Better Mattresses   The importance of a good night's sleep is not some future-tense sort of benefit. Being well rested is great for longevity, as well as being great for this very day. I believe it is the foundation of optimism.6. Drive with Care   This could also read, Don't Get in Car Accidents. It could also read, Ride your Bike more often.7. Find Reasons to Laugh   I try to laugh every single day. A real belly laugh is my favorite core workout.8. Sit Less and Garden More   Set a timer when you sit down to read or use the computer. When it rings, go garden or take a walk. I seriously do this. I am not saying I hav[...]

Mother's Day Table Settings and other Stories about How Women Feed Themselves


I am both a mom and a daughter. I have had a mother-in-law whom I adored. My own precious mother had seven children and she fed us dinner at 6pm for decades. I am the mom to three, step mom to two, and grandmother of four, and I love to cook for and feed my family. With all of this mothering in my life, I know my way around Mother's Day, and I know it is just a few weeks away. Shoot! Huh?Mother's Day is set aside in the US as a day to feed moms in a special manner. I know it is also a card-giving occasion, a flower-planting day for many, and a big hug of thanks to the woman we all count on: our mom. I have observed though that it is mostly about the food. Breakfast in bed. Brunch out after church. A gathering of the grown up kids for an afternoon meal in the backyard. Ah, American life on Mother's Day! Delicious food made special for ONE day. Thanks, Mom!As a health coach, it occurs to me that setting aside one day a year to focus on special food, flowers and gratitude for maternal reward is simply not enough. I propose that all women, especially women who are also moms, and daughters, too, for that matter, should think about how we make special the very act of eating. You know, how we do it for ourselves. Yes, we don't have to wait for Mother's Day to have a luxurious breakfast in bed (our eat our lunch without also driving)!Here are a few eating questions to ponder, without judgement, just think about:Do you often sit at your kitchen or dining room table to eat? Will you on Mother's Day?How often do you have sit down family dinners at your home? Are you in the midst of raising kids or is yours more of an empty nest these days? Are you the primary cook of your food? Do you eat while driving? Do you have a lovely eat while driving tray, like the one shown above?How often do you entertain at home, and when you do, do you set the table for your guests?Did you ever eat at a TV tray and watch The Wonderful World of Disney?Did you ever get to eat on a TV tray that had short legs so that you could place it on your lap as you sit in your favorite chair?Do you find it more relaxing to eat alone, before or after your kids have finished their dinner?Do you eat higher quality foods when you set the table to eat it?How often do you eat your food on the coffee table?What is your favorite thing to do in addition to eating when you are eating? I am here to tell you, because it has just now become crystal clear to me, that most women, and I include myself, do not make eating the special experience that it should be. Did you ever read the 1964 children's book, Bread and Jam for Francis by Russell Hoban? I remember this book fondly. It involves the story of Francis being packed lunch by his mother, and in that lunchbox he is treated to a soft boiled egg along with a tiny little salt and pepper shaker, and a tiny little spoon to tap the egg open, and oh, yes, yummy bread and jam. I remember thinking, boy-o-boy, that Francis is so lucky! To be treated to such a special way of eating school lunch. I want to be this lucky!I propose that we can all make ourselves feel special at most every meal we eat. We can set a place for ourselves at the proverbial table of life, and make sure that our simple daily meals are precious moments of time when our food is nourishing, our mind is relaxed, our full senses come out to play, and we know ourselves to be special. We can involve other people in this effort, or we can do it for ourselves because we like it that way. I really can and so can you.Let's prepare to celebrate Mother's Day this year as the fresh start in a new way of eating. After that lovely and special meal is over, let's keep out our place mats, and our cloth napkins, and even keep a place clear  on the coffee table. Bringing mindful beauty to most every meal is a healthy and fun thing to do, and it makes us feel special, because we are.If you hav[...]

Phone Tech Savvy to Benefit Your Fiber Art


If you are getting to know the features of your iPhone, and like me, you may never use that cell phone tool to its full advantage, today's blog post will give you one good reason to stretch beyond your technology boundaries! I fully admit that I am technology adverse. I seek out all the paper and pencil in the house well before I seek out a machine on which I can write. No calendar on my phone, no movies on my iPad--I simply like things old school. I get a little twitchy when people ask me why I don't take advantage of the time-saving tools on my iPhone, and I maybe even tune them out a bit, because I've convinced myself that I won't understand the steps involved in using my phone, at least not in a way that feels comfortable. Can you relate to any of this?So, now that you know about the low-tech place from which I function, I am about to tell you that I am enamoured with the Turbo Scan App on my iPhone! My patient husband looked at me during my recent rant regarding my HP Office Jet Pro. "I don't know how to scan anything or send a fax! I cannot find anyway to make my computer and scanner 'talk' to one another!!"  Or something to that effect. With a respectful pause, my husband told me that he uses this App on his phone and he can send a scan to anyone he wants, quickly and easily. Well, good for you, smarty pants! He very kindly showed me how to do just that.If you are an artist and often have fiber art in some stage of creative expression, you, too will love this phone App. I attended Jean Herman's workshop on fabric collage in Loveland, Colorado, this past weekend. Fabric collage is a fun technique that reminds me of creating your own puzzle from scraps of fabric. Gather up your scrap bag, a jar of gel medium, and a few of your favorite photos as inspiration, and you can in an afternoon, create a landscape, portrait or abstract image in fiber. The photo series I am sharing today reflects just such an experience. This fabric collage was developed during a four-hour workshop under Jean's guidance.Here is when the Turbo Scan tool on your iPhone comes into play! I opened the App on my phone and was directed to take three successive photos of the piece [the original looks like the image on the left]. The App then melded those three photos into one scan, which I could then manipulate. To say that I manipulated anything sounds like an exaggeration of what I personally did at this point...I simply pushed a button that let me see the scan in black and white [middle image], or with a bit of color [image on the right], or as a complete photo [the first image]. Can you see how helpful this functionality is to a fiber artist? I can easily see in this series of scans that the simple fabric shapes I glued down actually do have a 3-D impact, are of interesting tonal values, have line that moves the eye, and finally, where I might need to add more detail. All from the push of a button! The exciting use of this tool let me see in just moments where I need to go next with this fiber art. No pinning it up across a large room and looking at it all squinty-eyed until I can see room for improvement. No need for getting expert form and function critiquing to determine the next best move. In just moments, I used technology to guide myself, and I feel great!I am reaching out to my fellow tech-avoiders today in a selfish manner. This is my way of passing along the first step in healing myself of the notion I do not need to learn how to fully use my new phone. I hope that you have visions about how you could use this tool to get instant feedback on your next creative project! Or, I hope that this silly story is proof that old-school women can join together and learn new things! As Jean gently told us all at the workshop yesterday, her hope for us was that we would all end the day knowing that we had learned one important thi[...]

Does Your Healthy Home need a Detox?


The benefits of eating clean, nutritious, whole foods are clear--the fewer toxins, chemicals, and junk you feed your body, the more vibrant a life you'll lead. While the phrase "you are what you eat" stands true, the state of your environment can also impact your health. Here's what I have learned lately about detoxing my home.Cleaning ProductsToxic chemicals are widely used in generic cleaning products. The first step in your home detox is to read labels and question the "brand I always buy". Not all cleaning products list their ingredients. I would certainly avoid anything with a danger, hazard, or poison label. Ingredients like ammonia, DEA, APEs, and TEA are also bad for your home. Although even the most natural cleaners contain small amounts of hard-to pronounce ingredients, choose cleaning products like you would food. Opt for short ingredient lists (five or less) and make sure you comprehend most of the terms used on the label. Plant-based ingredients are the best choices, followed by solvent and phosphate-free products.Making Your OwnAlternatively, you may make your own cleaning products. Baking soda, lemon, vinegar, and cornstarch are pantry staples that can also double up as cleaning supplies. Combined with hot water and elbow grease, you may never need to use a chemical cleaner again!Furniture and TextilesMattress manufacturers often add flame retardants in order to comply with fire regulations. Regardless of the chemical concoction used, retardants are known to cause poor brain development as well as learning, behavior, and memory problems in children. Carpets also contain their own chemical load--stain resistance treatments, antimicrobial properties, antistatic agents, etc. In reality, they are all toxic.Be a conscious consumer and choose a mattress made from natural materials like untreated cotton or wool. Also ensure they are free from synthetic materials like foam, glue, and moth-proofing chemicals. Use the same standards when choosing bedding, curtains, and rugs. Clean carpets with a plant-based detergent, or if you're moving homes or renovating, opt for hardwood floors instead.Refresh your home with PaintSpringtime is often the cue for homeowners to clean and refresh their home. Nothing says fresh and new like a new coat of paint! Be sure to use no-VOC (volatile organic compounds) paints. Many companies advertise no-VOC, but this may only be the base white paint. Once color is added, it's no long no-VOC. Here is a link to more information.A truly clean, green home can't be achieved overnight--so if you can't incorporate these suggestions now, that's okay. Begin with small changes and watch them make a big impact over time.Thanks for stopping by,GeorgianneSometimes the big changes start with one, small conversation. Learn more about my health coaching programs at![...]

Exercise Good Ideas


It has happened to me again. After 30 years of this type of thing, you'd think I wouldn't be so surprised. Today I had another exercise-induced Good Idea. Has this ever happened to you? Maybe you are taking a nice, long walk through a tree-filled park, and like a bolt from the blue, a great idea comes to mind. Or perhaps you are riding away on the stationary bike and you forgot your ear buds, so you are just minding your own business, thinking about silly little things. Then, without any warning, the solution to a nagging problem is handed to you from the heavens! I've been known to say, "What?"What is it about exercise that gets the good idea juices flowing?  When I was a young mom, 30 or so years ago, I started a small in-home business that I named Gifted Ideas. I did this because I kept coming up with genius new product ideas while I was pushing one of my kids in a stroller around the block. Genius may be an exaggeration, but they did certainly feel like little gifts. In questioning how this happens to me and lots of other people, I learned from Leo Widrich that our brains are much more active during exercise than they are when we are on the couch. Belle Beth Cooper agrees. She says, "A lifetime of exercise can result in a sometimes astonishing elevation in cognitive performance, compared with those who are sedentary. Exercisers outperform couch potatoes in tests that measure long-term memory, reasoning, attention, problem-solving, even so-called fluid-intelligence tasks." There you go.Crochet Brain, filled with great ideas!Our brains truly are amazing in their ability to support us and our best interests. They secrete a particular type of protein that acts like a memory enhancer as well as a reset switch. This same protein will add endorphins to your blood and increase your good mood, which is perhaps why I believe my ideas are so wonderful. All I have to do to get these great ideas flowing is to get off my couch, perhaps even out of my fiber art studio, and move my body for 20 minutes. The next time I get a great idea while exercising, it will not be a surprise. My memory enhancers will make sure I don't forget how all of this works. That's the plan.Thanks for stopping by,Georgianne [...]

Color Play: A Study in Orange, Red, and Pink


The work of an artist is often more like play. It could be said that all those who enjoy their right livelihood are playful on the job! I am playing with the cheerful colors of orange, red and pink today, with a touch of yellow for fun. Some of these images are my own and some are inspirational touchstones for me.

Traditional furniture with zesty colors creates a youthful space at home.

Silk fusion is a playful fiber art technique I enjoy. This piece is now ready for embellishment.

The pinks and coppery oranges in the wool pile today are an obvious favorite of mine!

I believe this feather has been overlaid on an orange and pink backdrop. Fun!

What colors are you playing with today?

Thanks for stopping by,

Colorful, Young, Around-the-World Inspiration


How are you inspired? Do you seek out inspiring activities and people, making new friends and traveling to distant lands? (You would be my hero.) Is inspiration something that just happens for you, hitting you like a bolt of lightening from out of the blue? (Meaning it probably doesn't happen very often, but if it does, you are my hero.) Perhaps inspiration comes to you in the same way it comes to my sitting in a particular chair. I actively seek out the unique and sublime from the office chair I've had for 25 years. I have not had the Wonderful Worldwide Web for that long, but this chair has seen me through a lot of inspiring moments!Being only an aspiring traveler and occasional dinner party guest, it is important to my creative life that I find other ways to bring refreshing news and ideas to me. I have made it a habit to spend 30 minutes every day taking an online trip around the world, where I feast upon the latest resources and uplifting inventions I find there. How do you bring inspirational ideas into your daily life?Three Inspirations from my recent TravelsThe Blue Marble ProjectRock stars, presidents, kids, scientists, artists, explorers, and eco-celebrities...even the Dalai Lama and the Pope, have received blue marbles. In 2009, the wildly popular, absurdly simple, neuroscience-based initiative of marine biologist Dr. Wallace J. Nichols, has shared blue marbles around the world with millions of people in celebration of our beautiful, fragile, planet. Now, The Blue Marbles Project has set out to pass a blue marble through every person's hand on earth, with a simple message of gratitude along with it. So, the "rules" remain pure and simple. 1. The marble must be blue (any shade, preferably glass).2. When you get one, give it away to someone as a token of gratitude (whenever you like).3. Share your story with the world (however you like). Just play the Blue Marble game! Don't over think it. You'll love it. Contact Julie Starke to get some blue marbles for yourself, your classroom or event, and start spreading blue gratitude.The Creative Embroidery resource of Stef FrancisDo you get excited by the needle arts in Europe? My research, and perhaps someday my personal experience, has shown me a huge needle art community throughout Europe. One of the new-to-me favorite magazines to read is Embroidery, The Textile Art Magazine (the Embroiderer's Guild magazine). Through this resource, while firmly planted in my office chair, I have learned of  Stef Francis. If I were in Great Britain today, I would visit the "World of Space-Dyed Threads and Fabrics" run by Stef Francis. On her website, you will find a huge range of hand-dyed yarns, threads, fabrics, and fibers. I am told that most are dyed by Stef in her unique range of colors, which I just love! Doesn't her fiber and textile kit look like fun? I believe that in another life, I was a royal or aristocratic lady with my retinue, creating famous embroideries. Please let me know when it is teatime. The Amazing World of Richard ClarksonMy final inspirational person today is a young designer I have found from my other fantasy life...the world of Twitter.  It is there that through the help of another hip young man, the charming Brett of IAmLab (my new favorite blog and resource for #handmade love) I found Richard Clarkson (see how this armchair friend-making is fruitful: and young and hip). Truly, these things wouldn't happen to me in real life.What Richard makes will just astound you, if napping on your sofa while a gentle, non-wet thunder burst in your dining room seems like fun to you. Right? I love the romance of a light show on a cloudy night, and Richard has designed a way to bring that into your home! W[...]

Building Bridges between Artists and Consumers


Hello Fred!Have you ever wanted to be a patron of the arts? Perhaps you already are, or perhaps you think that this activity sounds a bit stuffy? I have always thought that I need to uplift and support Creatives of all types. I once paid a nickle for my friend's art fair entry. She was devastated, devastated I tell you, that no one wanted to buy her lovely sketch of Fred, the family dog. We were in kindergarten, and even then, I knew that being an art patron was something I'd enjoy!There are many legitimate reasons to support artists, especially if you are one yourself. I believe that the arts are part of any society that wants to experience true prosperity. The work of artists inspire me to be better: a better person, a better businesswoman, and a better artist. Art helps us express our values. It also helps build bridges between cultures. For example, there are many differences between mothering in Colorado and Nigeria, but there are also huge similarities, and those communion experiences can be celebrated in art. That is a true gift.I also believe that art and creativity are an important worldwide industry. I know that some artists don't like to be told they are making a consumer product, but I do know that nonprofit arts organizations in the US generate over $160 billion in economic activity annually, supporting 5.7 million jobs and investing in the passionate work of artists in American life. That my friends, is a lot of nickels.I would like to build a bridge between you and a wonderful new artisan-loving organization on the scene today! is a referral site that showcases curated shops of handmade goods, like the gorgeous pottery made by Niki Crosby of Happy Clay in Richmond, Virginia. The focus of ArtizanMade is on eco-fashion and home decor, and many of the members in this new endeavor are also members of the popular TAFA organization [Textile and Fiber Arts List].Behind each product on the ArtizanMade website is a story. There are so many loving and powerful stories of creativity in the midst of adversity, or transformational experiences that take an artistic soul and guide them into new experiences with small business dreams. I love being part of these success stories...don't you?Happy Clay by Niki Crosby, my new favorite artist!Instead of using my consumer purchasing power to profit a big-box store in 2014, my plan is to find again the sheer joy of supporting my fellow creatives, one Pencil Sketch of Fred at a time! Yes, there is truly joy in being a patron of the arts. I hope that you will join me in this delightful lifestyle via your own computer dial up. In fact, I have decided to become a member of ArtizanMade and add my dreams of artistic living to the chorus. As ArtizanMade reminds us, "Together we can shape our world into something that makes sense, which is sustainable, beautiful and handmade." AmenThanks for stopping by, Georgianne  [...]

Taking Care of Your 95-year-old Self


Some of us have had the privilege and the responsibility of taking care of a loved one in their old age. Whether or not anyone is prepared for being the caretaker or the elderly in this precious life situation, elder care is going to become a significant life passage experience for almost everyone.If you reflect for a moment how you feel about being taken care of in your own old age, there are probably a few adrenaline rushes and worries that flood your system. I know this is my immediate reaction. I am an independent woman who likes to live My Way. I love my home, my community and my lifestyle. Will these cherished elements of My Life be taken away from me in old age?Here's my thought: Vitality in your 90s and later begins today!!Did you know that you can join me in the Self-loving Lifestyle that lets you be your own caretaker in the last decade of your life? The way you take care of yourself this very day honors your later years. Here's a few things for you to think about: know that I am here to support you.Did you feed yourself today to create longevity?Did you exercise your body today to create and maintain balance, strength, vital operating systems, and to minimize pain?Have you ever learned how your vital lifestyle adds to your social lifetime?Do you use your passions and interests to create meaningful experiences at every life stage?We can join forces with others to safeguard the future vitality of our Planet! It is important to have a place to live.Are you supported by relationships that withstand the test of time?Would you like to take one financial action today on behalf of your 95-year-old self?I am 54 years old. I have attended seven funerals in the past five months. Some of these delightful friends, family, and neighbors died in unexpected ways, and others suffered months or years of decline. All of this has truly empowered me to reflect on how I can care for myself during the next 40+ years so that my final months are filled with sacred moments of loving connection and enlivened experiences. It's my life and my choice. I can make powerful efforts today to safeguard that choice for myself and my loved ones.You may be 20 years old, or perhaps you are already raising grandkids and downsizing -- there is never a wrong time to begin caring for your one, true, precious self! Will you join me? I would love to hear from you and we can begin brainstorming together your options for being your own primary caretaker. My work as a health coach is centered on hearing your ideas and helping you move in the direction of your choice. Comment to this post and I promise, I will be in touch! Follow this blog and learn many ways you can create a Self-loving Lifestyle.Until then, thanks for stopping by,Georgianne HollandNestle And Soar!Creative Health Coaching[...]

When Life Becomes a Roller Coaster Ride


If time is flying because you are having fun, then what does time do when a need to rest presents itself? I am coming to the end of my 60-day hiatus and time is doing a very funny dance. The clock can speed up or slow down in any number of ways, and at the end of a creative hiatus, I must report, time is like a roller coaster ride!Have you ever allowed yourself a healthy hiatus from your work life? To simply set down the tools and walk away from the work flow was not easy for me. I know that stopping work seems like it would take less effort than working, but I can report that it has been a considerable energy drain, this not working. My life was always structured with work: during hiatus, there were huge upswings followed by plunging blue moods, and always the unexpected corner or jostle. Thus, my 60-day roller coaster ride, and the coaster-car is pulling to a stop.NEW PLAN: Play * Linger * Alternatives * New DirectionPLAY  If you could call my new Nestle And Soar Studio Plan a structure for the future, it would have to be a rather loose plan, punctuated by lots of walks in the park. Perhaps my most profound lesson during this time away from my beloved needle felting tools would have to be a new attitude about dedication to a work schedule.LINGER  My healthy hiatus impressed upon me my need to be more playful and less structured overall -- in my life and in my work! I have also devoted myself to the notion of lingering through the process of creative design. Prior to my hiatus, I was so knee deep in commissions and producing product multiples that my schedule was an ever-ticking deadline clock. My new plan involves time to linger in the creative process.ALTERNATIVES  New to my studio in the year ahead will be the addition of artistic mediums other than needle felting. I will continue with my passion for the needle arts, and I will add the mixed media techniques that have long distracted me from my collected works. These alternatives will require additional education on my part, and I am thrilled!NEW DIRECTION   The rest of my plan for 2014 includes the addition of my expanded services under the umbrella of Nestle And Soar. I am excited to say that my sideline as a Health Coach is coming into full bloom in the year ahead. My devotion to the notion that Everyone Deserves the chance to Nestle And Soar has always included my interaction with experts in the health and empowerment movements. I am thrilled to be taking a new direction in my work by claiming NATURAL HEALTH as my theme for this year: both in my artwork and in my interaction with my clients. Please watch this blog as well as my newsletter for more information in the weeks ahead!As a health coach, one of the often repeated concerns of my clients is that they just don't have enough time. No time to cook, no time to exercise, no time for continuing education or new hobbies. Perhaps your work life has become your roller coaster? Or maybe your artistic endeavors have been put away on the shelf, waiting for the "right" time? Time both pulls us and pushes us, it even can take us for a wild ride! I hope that you will find time for your very best living in 2014. I hope that you will let me share in your victories and that you will share in mine. I hope we all have a chance to play!Thanks for stopping by,Georgianne [...]

Finding the Customer of your Dreams


When I think about working with my ideal client, I have to decide which hat to wear. There are 30 hours each week when I wear the fiber artist and entrepreneur's hat. This flamboyant chapeau is a favorite of mine and one that I have worn for more than 2 decades. You can bet there is always a romantic bird feather and lots of frilly silk on this hat, as the creative part of me always comes out when I pop it on my head!There is another part of my entrepreneurial brain that needs to be adorned as I work with the ideal nutrition and wellness client. As a budding Integrative Health Coach, I wear a curious sort of hat that helps me to ask important questions and amplifies my client's answers. I truly want to understand the needs and goals of each of my wellness clients...I want to be the perfect match for them.Do you have the need to seek out and serve the ideal client? Have you ever caught yourself trying to be All to Everyone? What kind of language do you share with the folks that are your ideal customer or client, and how can you be involved in a conversation using this language?Top Tips for Meeting the Customer of Your DreamsFocus on your strengths. Do you have clarity about what it is that you have to offer as skills, resources, finished products, or counsel? If you have clarity about what it is you have to offer and the niche that you serve, the right kind of customers will more easily relate to you. Practice saying "No". When I first began doing private commissions as a fiber artist, I thought it was important to say "Yes" to each and every request. I have learned that when I say "No Thanks" to the wrong kind of project, I open myself up to many opportunities to allow the right kind of work to come into my space.Choose your playground wisely. Have you been intoxicated by the Internet? It is easy for me to feel the desire to participate on all the channels of social media and marketing that being an online boutique affords me. This intoxication literally diluted my success, and I have learned to limit myself to only those platforms I can consistently and sincerely manage. How about you?Nurture your team. As a follow-up to narrowing my focus, I have also had to get real about those important business and creative tasks I am better off delegating to talented others. As I work with my health coaching clients, my time needs to be spent speaking directly to individuals, so I hire the help I need to do things like publish newsletters and create marketing documents. As I have created my own process and procedures, with the help of talented others, I have learned to understand how to nurture my team and myself. I feel good about counting on experts and their guidance, and I do my best to make sure they know how much I appreciate them!You are outstanding in your field!There are efficiencies in small business management that help me be better available to my ideal clients. Sharing these ideas is a practical matter that may help you in your enterprise. You, too, have wonderful ideas that would surely help me, and I invite you to share as well!Beyond the practical, I know that there are millions of people in the world who, like me, and perhaps like you, love fiber art, natural and ecochic home decor, and birds. There are also many millions who seek to improve their wellness and happiness quotient. I have proven to myself that finding the perfect people to serve with my passionate skills and voice is not really a matter of connecting with ALL those millions of like others.It is more, I believe, about sharing my unique vision about natural beauty and beautiful wellness. The clarity of purpose I have about [...]

Scary Times at the International Quilt Festival in Houston!


I have been looking forward to attending the Halloween-week event of the year for months, or maybe for 14 years, depending upon how you do the math. This extravagant trade and retail show for the quilting industry has happened on the frightful Halloween week for as many years as I can remember. My first trip to this landmark event happened in 1987 and this week's trip will mark my 10th year of attendance!The gap between my last trip to Houston, to play with all of my quilting peers, happened in 1999, and during the space between then and now, my fiber art passion has decidedly moved away from the heritage fine craft of quilt making into other hand needle art techniques like embroidery and felting. My street cred for quilting expertise has long-since worn off. I am looking forward to seeing how many other mixed-media and felt-loving fiber artists will be represented at this annual show. I expect to be stunned by the variety of offerings and all the talented artists and businesspeople represented. That's what always thrilled me about this event in years past...the unbridled creativity in this huge convention center.My beautiful Mom, Bonnie LemanA bit of anxiety is bubbling up for me regarding my opportunity to meet with many of the wonderful folks who have been friends of my mom's over the years...folks who have had personal relationships with Bonnie Leman and were often featured prominently in my family's stellar publications, Quilter's Newsletter Magazine and Quiltmaker Magazine. I have contacted Karey Bresenhan, the driving force behind the International Quilt Festival, and one of my mom's life-long friends, and I am looking forward to catching up with Karey. There is a little scary feeling about seeing so many women whom I often saw standing side-by-side with my mom. We lost mom 3 years ago this September, and this will bring back tons of memories for me. I want to feel strong about all of this, but I will admit to you that I am teary just thinking about it all.Cruella InspirationThe last Halloween-type scare I just know will happen Thursday, October 31st, is the impact that my three fantastic friends and I will make as we enter the Quilt-a-Palooza ballroom in Texas dressed up in our costumed-best!! Now, it's been about 20 years since I last dressed in costume for Halloween, and that right there tells you how much I look forward to this sort of thing. Regardless, I have created, along with my pals, a Beauty Contestant Costume themethat will just knock your socks off, or so is the plan. Yes, the four of us are each going as beauty pageant contestants, tiaras and all! When my son saw my costume, his response was, "So, you're going for a little Cruella Deville, huh mom?" Well, yeah.This little Halloween journey began when the four of us visited a Goodwill store after lunch one day, in the hunt for prom dresses we could embellish. I found a striking black and white Jessica McClintock gown, which would have pleased Cruella Deville to death! My costume takes that strapless taffeta gown and with some fiber-friendly embellishment, and a little inspiration from the brightly-colored spiders of Australia, I will present my interpretation of Ms. HighFiber. (I thought that was more appropriate than entering the contest as Grandma Colorado...) You know, beauty contests are pretty silly, even by those who take them seriously, so we figured, let's have a laugh.And you know what, when you are laughing, no matter what kind of challenge faces you, it is easy to celebrate. I hope to blog later in the week...along with a photo of the International Quilt Festival in full swing. It wil[...]

Inspirational Tuesday: Enjoy a New Dance


In the past couple of weeks in my Nestle And Soar Studio, I have been dancing around all of the fiber art projects I have in some stage of creation. By dancing around them, I mean I have been circling them, looking at them, touching them and feeling love for them...but I haven't been adding to them. Today is a good day to stop the dance of the familiar, and to instead fill my mind and heart with new inspirations...the creations of others! Do you ever feel almost bored by what you have going on in your creative life? When this happens to me, I know it is time to get out of my own head, out of my own studio, and seek inspiration from outside! Besides a fun online journey to find inspiration, it is important to actually go into your actual community and visit with other creatives (do I sound stuck, or what?!). Today in Colorado, it is supposed to be 67 degrees with clear skies...stepping into this beauty will be very inspirational. What inspires you today?Ibihaj JneidOwl Jones ArtMeg Hannan, Fabric JewelsTextures Gallery, Along the Stream Bed, Alice Pickett LewisThanks for stopping by,Georgianne[...]

Uplifting and Nurturing Yourself and Others


When was the last time you spent four full days unplugged, surrounded by vibrant women of all ages, while being encouraged to rest and be completely well-fed and pampered? If this sounds appealing to you, I highly recommend the event I just attended in Colorado! Emerging Women 2013 is an event I attended October 10-13, and as a entrepreneur and family-centered woman, I found it to be important both personally and professionally. Emerging Women is a new movement and event designed to support and inspire women to express themselves authentically through the work that they do. This energetic group strives to provide the tools, knowledge, and networking needed to help women lead, start and grow businesses in ways that integrate feminine values such as connection, collaboration and heart.I did feel included and nourished by this event and am glad that I invested both time and money as a participant. Do you know about any heartfelt events such as this near your hometown? Do you give yourself permission to take personal or professional-growth mini-vacations? I hope you will consider finding a special time-out in your upcoming schedule. Here are some of the inspirational ideas that female thought leaders I visited with presented...along with the part of their message that I found most inspiring!What role does creativity in my work as an artist play in my health and wellness? Brené BrownEliza Reynolds, a 20 year-old woman asks me about the crisis of perfectionism, and the message young women misunderstand today. She reports that being told "You can be anything," actually is heard as "You have to be everything." She has asked me and all the women at this conference to be a teacher to young women about what it means to be a Whole Woman, instead of a dissatisfied woman who fractures herself by seeking perfection.Alanis MorissetteTara Moore encourages all women to pay loving attention to our biggest challenges and our true calling in life. She reminds me that the human body is beautifully designed to give each of us hints and clues about what arenas in life are part of our greatest good. For instance, when was the last time you felt goose bumps on your arms and the thrill of excitement in your chest when you began a project in your work? Living your true calling would provide you with this physical response, as it is your body's way of telling you that you are in your true flow.Eve EnslerSera Beck was unknown by me before this event, and her presentation was dramatic and heart wrenching. She gently reminds me to put my energy into my soul's work ahead of any sort of business template or to-do list. As a determined A-type person, I needed to hear this advice.Elizabeth Gilbert, author of the popular book, Eat, Pray, Love reiterated Sera's message when she told the crowd that her best work has always been accompanied by ease and joy. Elizabeth GilbertKristen Neff is a researcher and college professor who reminds us all that self compassion is related to well being as the flip side to self disregard. When was the last time your inner critic told you that you don't know what you are doing? How easily I can speak harshly to myself, in a manner I would never speak to another person!How would you describe your one most true and natural talent? How do you take care of your future self? Do you sometimes think that living a long life would be great, as long as you never become a burden to your family? What could you do now to reduce the chances that you will be feeble in old age?How do you give yourself creative license?[...]

Top 10 Tuesday -- Autumn Splendor


The color palette of Autumn is thrilling to me, and perhaps you feel the same. I decided to find 10 inspirational fiber artists who have created gorgeous items in this blaze of fall colors: orange, gold, purple, and romantic reds. These are the colors that fill the Colorado landscape this time of year, and I love them! Are you ready to have your cozy socks knocked off by Autumn joy? Enjoy this Top 10 list and be sure to visit with these talented artists, as each one is a member of the exceptional Textile And Fiber Artist List (TAFA). I highly recommend this professional and vibrant fiber art community to everyone who knows and loves quality handmade craftsmanship and healthy independent entrepreneurship from around the world!Fall Scarf Hand Woven by Loom On the LakeThis handwoven scarf is luxuriously supple with a sheen and graceful drape. Contents include a mixture of bamboo yarns, which is soft yet strong. 7 3/4" x 68", $175 USD, LoomOnTheLake in Lake George, New York.Felt Pendant Necklace by LenteJulcsiFall days are a great time to adorn yourself with warm colors and textures, and I cannot imagine a softer way to add sparkle to your fashion! Decorated with playful freestyle machine stitching, this fun pendant includes a cotton cord with a metal clasp closure. $15 USD, LenteJulcsi in Hungary.Indian Summer Embroidered Pouch by LaTouchablesWhen you carry this hand-crafted envelope-style purse, know that you will be enjoying a one-of-a-kind stunner that has the touch and heart of many hands! Created by LaTouchables in Germany, this beautiful item includes South Asian embroidered cotton, Indian Banjara, glass beads from Germany, two antique buttons from the maker's great-grandmother, and Italian cotton in bright fall colors! A real compilation of styles and places...a global work of art! $96.25 USDWarm Your Floor with Stunning Fiber by OdpaamThis colorful rag rug is a one-of-a-kind treasure that brings color to your floor and warmth to your feet. Crocheted using t-shirt yarn and remnants hand cut by Odpaam in Jerusalem, Israel, this free-form rug is soft yet durable, with a simple machine wash and air dry, it will stay crisp and playful for years to come! 40" x 30", $160 USD.Rich Coiled Rope Basket by Sally MankeThis cheerful basket would look great filled with bath or body lotions as a gift for an Autumn bridal shower or filled with burp clothes and baby wipes for a baby shower! Beautiful warm colors and embellishment with a bright glass bead, this clothesline basket by Sally Manke in Arcadia, Michigan is a great find! $38 USD. Hand Dyed, Multi-Fiber Skein by The Rainbow GirlHere's a fun way to add some sparkle to your Fall creativity! This multi-fiber selection of hand-dyed threads of coordinated colors and textures has been combined into a single, 118 inch (running length) skein. TheRainbowGirl in Bishop's Stortford, United Kingdom has combined cotton, silk and viscose yarns, which are perfect for embroidery, embellishing scrapbook pages or altered books, tassels, braids or any other project which comes to mind!! $4.94 USD.Jewel Toned Beauty by Dianne Koppisch HrickoThis crinkled silk chiffon scarf is almost poetic, the way it gently folds and billows around the neck. Dyed multiple times using the ancient shibori method, DianneKoppischHricko in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, says it well when she tells us this scarf provides a sculptural beauty as it frames your face. You can see all of the jewel-tones in this gorgeous scarf in her online shop! $60 USD.Autumn Free-Form Crocheted Handba[...]

The Garden of Gratitude Exhibit at Mile Hi Church


I am pleased to announce that one of my favorite fiber art pieces has been accepted into the Garden of Gratitude exhibit at Colorado's popular church, Mile Hi, in Lakewood. This special exhibit is a mixed media exhibit featuring wonderful examples of both fine art and fine craft, all created in the garden theme. I entered my piece entitled Garden of Eden, which is one of a nine-part installation. I am loving the process of creating this series, which includes a mix of fine needlework techniques: quilt art, beading, embroidery (hand and machine), and hand needle felting!

The nine pieces in this series are being created to hang as a unified grid with three rows of three panels, each mounted on a birch box frame. The piece you see here is the centerpiece of that group.

I expect to have the entire installation, which will measure approximately 100" x 70", finalized by early 2014. I am hopeful that a collector will snap up the entire series for display in a lovely public space setting. I hope you will let me know if you or your organization are looking for fiber folk art in this eco chic garden theme! I am excited to be planning more large mixed technique fiber art pieces from my studio here at Nestle And Soar, and hope to show them all to you in the months to come!

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Weaving Wonders and Why I Must Try It


I have decided I would like to try weaving. My father had an upright rug loom that he experimented with when I was in high school, and I recall watching him pass the weaving shuttles back and forth while listening to classical music. Some of the textiles in the Denver Art Museum's collection are extraordinary examples of Navajo Designs from 1840-1870 that took my breath away! Imagining the functional uses of these garments and home furnishings that were handcrafted by women from naturally dyed fibers, and yet today look as vibrant as ever, as well as quite sophisticated in design, is inspirational to me.The weaving community in Colorado is an energetic group with many people who make incredible textiles. I have attended a few of the Rocky Mountain Weavers' Guild Annual Fiber Art Sales, and am looking forward to the next one at the Englewood Civic Center October 24-26th. The best place for me to take weaving classes, based on where I live, would have to be Shuttles, Spindles, and Skeins in Boulder, Colorado. They are preparing for their 21st birthday as one of Colorado's premiere fiber arts destinations. This will be a wonderful wintertime activity for me!The kind of loom I want to use is a rug or tapestry loom, much like the one my dad had many years ago. I think I will start my weaving exploration doing tapestry weaving with David Johnson. Perhaps I will work my way into other kinds of weaving as well.Ulrika Leander, Royal Oak, MarylandI am not sure yet how weaving tapestries will become a part of my art career as a fiber folk artist! In my Nestle And Soar studio I am beginning to move away from pillows and spending much more of my time creating one-of-a-kind fiber art for the wall. Perhaps the foundation of a new handcrafted needle felt series will be hand-loomed tapestry? If you know of a fiber artist who is already combining these two specific mediums, I'd love to hear about him or her! For today, I'd like to share with you a tapestry weaver whose artistry I admire. Ulrika Leander of Contemporary Tapestry Weaving creates fiber art that is quilterly and colorful--I love her work!Weaving is a wonderful fiber art and I am looking forward to this next part of my artistic adventure. What have you planned for your next adventure?Thanks for stopping by,Georgianne[...]

Are you Well Educated? What are you Afraid to Learn?


Garden of Eden, by Georgianne HollandFiber artists are often educated in fields other than art. Like actors and artists of all mediums, our creative output as artists is often supplemented by another field -- endeavors often unrelated to the fiber art we create. Singers wait tables in fancy restaurants to pay the rent, photographers teach history in high school, and so on it goes. Some of these supplemental jobs require a huge investment in education and others do not. What is your educational status? Do you consider yourself to be well educated in the field that is your primary source of income? Are you a creative entrepreneur who considers herself to be self-taught? Are there lifestyle situations you face today that, if time allowed, you'd benefit from some additional expertise?Creative people like me are often self-taught through many hours of experimentation, trial and error, and good old book-learning. The textile and fiber arts communities of Great Britain are inspirational to me because they have many influential college and guild programs to help fiber enthusiasts become professional practitioners. In the spirit of that example, I recently researched where in Colorado a fiber folk artist like myself (self-taught), could pursue a college-level education. Have you ever looked into this option for yourself?Artist Tom Lundberg is my new fascination on this topic of higher education and fiber art. Since 1979, Tom has been a Professor in the Department of Art at Colorado State University in Fort Collins. He is the coordinator of the BFA and MFA programs in fiber media. It makes my heart sing to think of a program such as this in a neighboring town! Tom has accomplished what so many of my contemporaries dream about: he has established himself as an artist who uses embroidery as his medium. Extensively exhibited in solo shows and select international venues, this award-winning fiber artist is someone I study today as a source of inspiration. What do you study today? Are you a lifetime student, or did you hang up your number 2 pencil and notebook years and years ago? There are so many topics a creative person can study and add to the ways in which we are educated. I recently heard about Babs Didner in Texas. "Babs Didner never learned how to cook. She grew up the youngest in a large family in which her mom and oldest sister ran the kitchen. 'I was always totally intimidated by cooking,' says Didner, 50, a school administrator in Austin, Texas, in a recent issue of Experience Life! Magazine. "My friend Michelle loves to cook, so we’d get together and she’d explain cooking basics to me while we fixed our food. Sometimes we’d follow recipes, but she knew how to cook without recipes, too, and she’d explain ways to do that, like how to thicken a mixture or what spices went with what type of food.”I love this example of facing the fear of learning something creative and important like cooking healthy food. It has been said that cooking is the only art form that you consume. What have you been putting off as a new skill? Think about your circle of friends for a minute. Not everything you desire to learn requires enrollment in a bachelors' program in a university (however exciting that would be!). When I think about the wide variety of people I am happy to call friends, I know that there is boundless expertise and kindness they are willing to share. For instance, I have a great friend who is a professio[...]

Organization for Fiber Artists and other Creative Entreprenuers: "ROCPAS"


Creative minds are not always organized. The creative types I know, including myself, are often seekers who look for pattern, color, inspiration and stimulation throughout their environment. Having multiple projects going at once is often the result of this seeking, experimental personality type, which doesn't exactly lend itself to tidiness.So while creatively minded people are often in swirl of energy and excitement, there is also the very real need to be a responsible, career-focused least in my practice as an artist! If you pursue art for profit as I do, you may also need to go against type and spend at least some of your working hours taming the creative mess that is all around and about your creative space. I mean, where did I put those papers that I have to turn in to the museum shop next week? I'm sure they were put somewhere logical and safe...I just haven't seen them in awhile. Can you relate?The Nestle And Soar business office, dusted and swept!Here are a few of my favorite attempts in the past few months, along with the amazing inspiration I have pulled from others, as I endeavor to organize my life as a fiber artist. I offer these images with the hopes that you will share some of your best ideas and successes in this matter of Responsible, Orderly Conduct in the Pursuit of Artistic Success: ROCPAS. Like many things in life, it all begins with a dream.The paperwork involved in running a small business doesn't always feel small -- it often feels overwhelming! Keeping my business papers organized is an ongoing endeavor around here. Ideal fabric storage idea from Bee in My BonnetLike most fiber artists, handling fabric is a tactile joy for me! Even though it is fun to remind myself about all of the fantastic fabric I own and stockpile, I have never taken as much focused effort as the entrepreneur Lori Holt at Bee in My Bonnet. Her fabric stash makes my list of Responsible Orderly Conduct because it allows her to know exactly what her inventory of fabrics can yield in terms of quilted goodness. She probably doesn't have to buy fabric because she cannot find the fabric she thinks she bought 6 months ago. Has that ever happened to you?Speaking of paperwork, I have this daydream that involves my family and how they would be able to look up details regarding our shared life paperwork without having to step into my studio, asking me to help them. In this daydream, no one begins a request with the dreaded, "Do you know where those forms are for that big important project we've been talking about?" I would rather just keep sewing and tell them to go look in the baby blue binder. Right?This daydream remains a dream for me because I haven't made myself, or anyone else, work toward a sorted, labeled, updated binder system like the one I've found here. I do own a label making machine and a credit card for Office Max though, so I feel like this is a doable project. Someday.My last organizational tool that seems to be working well here at Nestle And Soar is the use of compartmentalized sorting devices. In my studio, as well as in my home, I seem to have enough storage options. That being said, I still wasn't being organized about how stuff was placed inside of those drawers, closets and shelving units. I was using the "Jam it in Somewhere" technique, which isn't sustainable, and not all that helpful.When I think about being a successful creative entrepreneur, I don[...]