Saturday, August 30, 2008

Rain, Rain Go Away

It's overcast today and I'm determined not to let that dampen my spirits. I'm in the studio and the dark purple walls are more prominent today than the bright yellow. Funny how I've never noticed that before; I'm always drawn into this room by the cheery feel. So I decided to share some photos of parasols in bright, cheery colors to brighten my mood and yours.
We watched the Biography channel this morning featuring Ben & Jerry. Several years ago we drove through 13 states in 12 days, on our way to and from the British Invasion, a sports car show in Stowe, VT. And we had the chance to visit Ben & Jerry's, taking the tour of the facility, sampling their ice cream. You move from room to room, and suddenly they're bringing out cafeteria trays filled with little paper cups of ice cream. First one flavor, then another, and another. And you don't leave the room til it's all eaten. No kidding! There are more tour groups following along behind you, so there's a sense of urgency to gobble up more than one cup of a flavor so the next group can experience this little bit of heaven for themselves. Turns out Ben & Jerry don't even own it anymore. Didn't own it when we were there. Can you imagine that a conglomorate owns your name, your face, your business?
My name is getting out there more and more, in new and exciting ways, and I'm slowly adjusting to the idea of it. Hancock Fabrics bought our unfinished wooden bangle bracelets and I was asked to design a technique using a product that would be found in their stores to help promote the sale of the bangles. So I did just that last summer, wrapping them with fibers and ribbons. And we printed a full-color tri-fold brochure that's available in the stores, giving you photos and step-by-step instructions on how to make them yourself. The first time I saw the brochure with my name featured prominently on the front, I was overwhelmed. Designer: Linda Crofton. Wow. Today we got a sales flier in the paper from Hancock Fabrics and now I'm thinking I'll be forced to find a local store and pay them a visit. Just to see if the bangles are on display along with my brochures. Pinch me. I must be dreaming.
I've got 17 project sheets still to do. The bangles were decorated a year ago and it's past time for me to get the project sheets completed so that more brochures can be sent off to the printers. It's an amazing time in my life. I'm having fun, just like I've always done. I get to continue teaching, which will always be my first love. But I'm branching out into new arenas, and with every day I continue to count my blessings.
So forget the clouds that loom overhead, casting shadows on your long weekend. I've been collecting paper parasols (the tiny ones) for years, not really sure what I wanted to do with them, just knowing I adored those bright, cheerful little umbrellas. Today I've decided to pull them out of the drawers and make a centerpiece for my studio. For those of you local ladies who come to the studio each month for stamp club, you have something to look foward to in September!
But that reminded me that I have a rubber stamp of parasols. So today I'll be designing a new bangle, using a fabulous background technique, or two, or three, and stamping them with the parasols. I'm off to have a few hours of fun. Wish you were here.

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