Monday, November 7, 2011

the little Art Show that could

Just winding down from a busy weekend (and the resurgence of a cold that I thought had gone away).
I decided at the last minute to participate in a first-time Art Show & Sale at the Richmond Hill United church last Saturday, Nov. 5. Am I ever glad I did!!!
After much stress trying to juggle show preparation with home renovations (my husband's doing the renovations, but I'm doing the organizing), baby's 1st birthday parties (we had two for Evan), and Halloween, the show went off AMAZINGLY!
I was a little late getting my display ready (probably about 10-15 min. into the show), but in just 3hrs I was thrilled to sell 5 of my Li'l Art framed sculpture pieces, and several Li'l Bouquet sterling silver jewellery pieces! (below: "A Winter's Day", sold at the Art Show & Sale last Saturday)
Without a doubt my BEST SHOW EVER!
I sincerely hope that the organizers plan on a 2nd Annual, because I hope to be there for it.

Very happy to add that the fee for a table at this event was a percentage of sale, of which I was pleased to be able to leave a sizable sum by the end of the night. Proceeds went to the Stephen Lewis Foundation for African families affected by AIDS.

I didn't have my camera with me, but I'm hoping to receive some photos taken of my booth by the organizers, which I will then post to this article.

BTW, I've got my work cut out for me, since this weekend is the Heintzman House Auxiliary 40th Annual Artisan Craft Sale, of which I am participating again this year, and I NEED MORE PRODUCT, YIKES!!!

...but don't worry, my hands will be busy all week with my polymer clay!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

having fun with Etsy

I thought I'd take the opportunity given to me by my mom (who's babysitting Evan), and the weather (giving me a break in the clouds) to try out some new product photo shots I've been dreaming up for Etsy.

My posts to Etsy come in spurts, just like my blog (many apologies), which I hope to improve on with much more regular attention!

So I begin, again, today with showing you a couple of my favorite shots. I say "a couple" because there really are only two that I love. The others are simply OK, so I'm choosing to ignore them (though the items have been posted to my Etsy shoppe).

This first image was really a last-minute stroke of genius (as I give myself a pat on the back). Starting with the realization that I needed a neutral, soft white or cream background. I quickly searched for paper that suited (finding this beautiful cream with words of love embossed in shimmery highlights), and my eyes gazed over a recent garage sale find, this ceramic pillar candle holder. Simply love the results!

As for the second image, well, it was one of my first from this morning's exercise, but I think quite effective. Simple, highlighting the lavender shades from the hydrangea bauble bead of the earrings, and soft, with the faded background (somewhere in the far depths of my brain there lies a word to describe this photographic effect, but alas, high school photography class was a LONG time ago!).

I posted 6 new items to my Etsy shoppe today (I am very proud to say!), which can be found at

Sunday, May 15, 2011

2011 design flyer

Well, it's come a little late...just a little, but I do have a good excuse! ;-)

Many thanks to my husband. Without his help I can't get ANYTHING done for Subtle little boy, Evan, bless him, is very demanding of my time!

So yes, my Li'l Bouquet design flyer for 2011. I had to format some of my more recent jewellery photos to get this may notice most of the new designs are in the "Girly-Girl" collection.
I also put together two handy-dandy sheets for colour and style selection for my Nested Flora and Petals-on-Petals designs, all in an effort to make ordering as easy as possible!

Monday, April 18, 2011

whew! another busy weekend...

not this past weekend, but the one that preceded it. I had so much on the go two weekends ago that I needed a full week to recover, which is why this post is being made today and not last Monday.
Where to start? In a nutshell, Friday was packing, Saturday was Mom-to-Mom sale shopping, Evan's baptism and celebratory dinner, AND loading of the car, and finally, Sunday was The Original Wedding Soiree.

The Original Wedding Soiree, Subtle Detail's first bridal show since January of 2009.

You always meet the nicest of people at these events!
Among them are Jennifer Arp of Cakeaholic, Stephanie Casino of The Press Fine Stationery, and Shiri Shapiro of Focus Studios. I "tasted" many of Jennifer's mouth-watering mocha-hazelnut sample cupcakes through the day...that's probably what inspired me to make some of my own cupcakes yesterday, though nowhere near as good (no offence Betty Crocker).
Shiri was kind enough to photograph my booth.
She captured in a few seconds what I can never get in hours of snapshots with my little camera.
The photos in this post are hers
(with exception to one, my last).
I've added all three to my links page on my website:

Someone who's been on my links page since it's inception, my own friend and cake designer Julie Tan-Ramos of Yummy In the Tummy Cakes. Julie kindly lent me one of her displays for my Li'l Newlyweds cake toppers. I just love the delicate pearlized white flowers and leafy scroll on this canary yellow 4-tier cake! I've been wanting the opportunity to display my toppers on a real cake for some time (please, if you're one of my customers and you're reading this, SEND ME YOUR PICTURES, I'd love to see them!), and this did not
disappoint. My "Simply Beautiful" sample Li'l Newlyweds settled in nicely amongst the fondant flora, and the yellow complimented the purple roses perfectly.

There's so much more that I could mention, like a chance encounter, show prep. and show setup agrivation, but this post feels like it's getting a bit long in the tooth (where did that phrase come from anyways? *shrug*)...another post, another day...

An eventful weekend to be sure.

The vendors mentioned in this post can be found at the following:

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

spring 2011

Good morning everyone!

It may not look it outside this morning, as I glance through my basement studio window onto my neighbour's snow-dusted roof, but we are in spring!
A couple days ago I celebrated by creating a collection of choice colours for my jewellery line Li'l Bouquet.
I've been meaning to do this for some time to make the ordering process easier off of my Etsy site, and to make it more clear that my pieces can be made-to-order, despite the colour of the images posted!
So, the colours...I must say it was difficult to choose just 9, a random number based solely on the shape of the image I wanted to create for Etsy, but also seemed reasonable...not too much, not too little.
I have to admit that I took some guidance from this year's Pantone spring colours palette, but my own is also tempered with relevance in it's
application to flowers...along with one little self indulgence - putty gray, which happens to be my absolute most favorite colour for this year!
Interestingly enough, "putty gray" was a discovery I made by mixing together two scraps of clay, a brown with a minty-green. I was trying to come up with a stem colour for one of my Li'l Art pieces, "Snowball", that would fit into the palette of the overall piece. I've been so happy with the colour that I've found myself using it, and variations of it, over and over again!
This colour palette is meant only to be a guide, a source of inspiration for Spring 2011, as I ca
n create absolutely any colour imaginable! As well, it should be noted that while some of my designs are mono-chromatic, most involve an assortment of flowers from 3 or more colour groups, so the palette would only serve me (and you) as a base from which to start.
Take tangerine orange as an example. In a "Flower Joy" design, I would incorporate tangerine orange with a lighter & a darker shade, or with a slightly more yellow orange, and a slightly more red orange. This helps create dimension for the piece, and makes it a little more interesting and dynamic!
You'll find this colour palette posted in several of my new Etsy posts,, and soon to be posted to my website,
The Pantone Spring Color Palette can be found on

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

drying off...

Another winter thaw, another flooding!
This happened to me last year. I suppose it was worse, because the space beside the cellar that flooded was then used for my workspace, but now it is my storage area, and being nicely hidden with veiled curtains, I have no idea how long my assorted display materials had been soaking in the soggy rug. Luckily, aside from a few wrinkled papers, most appears to be salvageable, but I'm eager to dry out my table tops by the gas fireplace (not too close, wouldn't want THAT kind of disaster!).

Monday, February 14, 2011

sculpting with polymer clay...a class project

With the next class date scheduled, I thought I'd share with you one of the projects that I do with my students.

a little jewellery box...

Made entirely out of polymer clay, this one was accented with Swarovski crystal rhinestones.
Instruction for this project takes place over two class sessions (each 2hrs in length), as the bottom has to be baked first (something the students do when they return home from class), prior to the fabrication of the lid.

I have another jewellery box currently in the works, and I'm anxious to post photos of it as well, just as soon as it is completed. I started it in my class, though I never really have the time to complete projects myself in class, as I'm there for student instruction! The bottom is complete, though I never was happy with the lid that I started, so I have to get back to it!

Here are a couple other photos of this first sample:

A delicately detailed design, and yet simple to make!
The class culminates with the creation of image tiles (like my Li'l Art pieces) that can be framed in shadow boxes for wonderfully whimsical wall hangings.
The beauty of polymer clay is that the possibilities are endless, where any theme can be worked with to create projects suited to all tastes!

The next round of classes are set to start Wednesday April 6th, followed by 4 consecutive Wednesdays. 7:00pm - 9:00pm
They are offered by the Town of Richmond Hill. Further information can be found here and here , page 69.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

a new assistant & a new design

A natural progression of my business, it became necessary to take on an assistant. LOL! I could really do with some extra hands around here, what with mine being so busy with my 3 1/2 month old, but sadly, this assistant has none to offer. What she can do though is model my work, something I've needed for some time, both for design and photography.
I haven't yet named this new piece (or my assistant, which I feel compelled to do!), but here's a first look:

I must admit that I love this latest design!
It's I believe what I was attempting to do with a similar one last year, "cascade" (right),
but am much happier with the results of
this new piece.
The larger blossom (the same component I use for my "blossom" brooches), and the new smaller, but similarly scaled piece at the top of the flower cluster were what the design needed.
All three are composed on top of my own wire flowers, much like my "petals-on-petals" design.
But I'm most pleased with the simplicity of this design which allows it to be worn at various lengths and even wrapped around the neck like a choker.
As for the pearls, I've been wanting to incorporate them into my designs for some time now, and am happy with the results.
I'm eager for my son to give me a little time to create a few more. Though I'm stalled because I love this colour combination so much that I'm having trouble coming upon another that I would like just as much. I have a white collection in waiting.

This piece was recently accepted into Made You Look (, where I'm told it can be found in the shop on the north side of Queen Street (the rest of my collection is in the south side shop).

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Li'l Art Classes!

Join me in my studio for a 5hr polymer clay workshop!
Learn how to make pieces like this one...

and learn the techniques that will help you create a piece with your own unique flare!

First class offered Sunday February 6th.
More details available on our website and Facebook page: (click on "classes" under "services")

Saturday, January 15, 2011

in studio - Jan. 15, 2011

What's going on in our studio right now?...

I'm excited about some ideas I have for new some jewellery designs.
Not to mention my latest favorite colour which I like to call putty gray.
I can't get a decent picture of it with my studio lighting, but I'll post images of the new pieces when they're finished. Stay tuned!

Monday, January 10, 2011

"Sing With Me"

Another image of my latest ABC art, this time as it hangs in Evan's bedroom...

Finally got it hung up yesterday and I am so thrilled! Makes me want to finish the curtains for his window, LOL!

The beautiful baby blanket hanging over the chair back was crocheted by my mom. Here's the link to the free pattern:

The chair was a find on Kijiji. You can't really see it in this photo, but it's a 70's retro rocker-swivel chair in green velvet and I absolutely love it!...mostly because it doesn't take up half the room, visually or physically.

Well, that was a bit of a ramble...bye for now,


Thursday, January 6, 2011

what I accomplished over Christmas...

It's amazing what can be done when there's little else to do!

While visiting my mom (she lives two and a half hours away), I decided to spend some time on my website. Of course, it helped that my mom helped out A LOT with Evan...changing his diapers, keeping him content, walking my dog!

All it took was about a day and a half of sold, (virtually) uninterrupted computer time, and a little extra when I got home (adding photos, etc.).

There's still a couple pages that need some work, but I'm thrilled with the progress I made in so short a time!

Have a look...

Monday, January 3, 2011

fantastic photos & a custom order

Always promoting my custom design services, I was thrilled last fall when a customer contacted me (after finding my booth at the Binder Twine festival in September) to have her friend's bridal bouquet made as a keepsake necklace.

Now, I've done this kind of custom work before, including a Nested flora design of my own bridal bouquet (the real one, which had about a centimeter of dust on it, got affectionately placed in our compost bin after the necklace was completed), but never have I seen such beautiful photos! No, this customer is not a professional photographer, she's just really handy with her camera!

See the results...

Elisabeth's Bouquet, in the Petals-on-Petals necklace design.

You can have your bridal bouquet made into a keepsake necklace too! Just send me your photos & we'll talk!