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Delivery to the Denver Merchandise Mart

Filling my card rack in the showroomIn December, we delivered the new line to the showroom, Bunk House Gifts, at the Denver Merchandise Mart. My cards are displayed in a beautiful cottage style card rack custom built by my talented husband, John. It's a perfect fit.


The cards arrived. After a lot of test marketing we have printed our first 16 note cards and 25 greeting cards from the series, Women I Might Have Known.

Needless to say, I was thrilled with how beautiful they looked in print, and can't wait to share them with you.


Valentines and cheesecake, Yum!

What Women Want, 9x11inches, acrylic framed, 2012This morning I was in a wonderful little cheesecake bakery for my monthly painting critique. It was more than cute and reminded me of what I always found so appealing about Valentine’s Day.  Above the fireplace was a wreath assembled from vintage valentines. Garland spelling Cheesecake Therapy on Valentine backed papers hung above the pastry counter. Even in the restroom, little Valentines were tucked in here and there.  

 When I was a little girl I approached Valentine’s Day with the fervor of a true arts and crafts enthusiast. I cut hearts out of red and pink construction paper and decorated them with glitter and bits of doilies. As years went by I graduated to silk screening and my own carved rubber stamps in high school. And for my own little boys, I decorated cookies. I strung the Valentines they received in school into garlands and hung them along the fire place with heart shaped lights.  I made painted and decorated valentines for friends and family. I can’t help myself. I like this stuff.  I think it’s in my genetic code.  

 handmade valentines from my stash

When I walked into the bakery this morning I think I felt I was with kindred spirits. So many little details announced the holiday and the sheer pleasure these women must have had making all of it. I was inspired, and found a place that I will return to many times with anticipation of their next theme.

When you look at my painting above please understand that the 2 pound box of chocolate is pretty hard to resist, but the heart shaped box and the satin ribbon is a very significant part of that gift, and makes all the difference in the world. Long after the candy is eaten, nearly all of us will still have the box and the bow as a keepsake for many years to come.  Take my advice, no matter what gift you have selected, don’t forget to embellish it. And if you want to eat cheesecake, check out Cheesecake Therapy in Arvada, CO. Tell Heather Susan sent ya!


Launch Party for Women I Might Have Known

The party was a great success. New friends and old arrived on Saturday, January 28th, to celebrate the launch of my new card, Women I Might Have Known. Our friend, Diane Calkins, greeted all arrivals with a free gift, and 3 generations of the McDougal clan helped to serve drinks and provide our guest with information about the company.  There are more good things coming in this line so stay tuned.



Snow days are good for the soul

Does it look like I made dinner?A snowy day in the middle of January is a good excuse to declare, “I’m going to knit all day.” I mentally run through a list of excuses to justify my decision to settle into a comfy chair and knit. It’s too cold to work in my studio today. I prefer to do the laundry while I’m working in my studio so it could wait also. Quarterly taxes aren’t due for 10 more days and the QuickBooks is nearly caught up. John is out of town so making dinner isn’t a priority. Okay, it looks like I’m good to go. And believe me, I do.

I have a project with a deadline. I can’t actually give this project true “delivery date” deadline status because; 1. I’m not getting paid to do it, and 2. It’s for me so there is no one waiting for me to deliver. Just the same, I have an event at the end of the month and I want to wear it on the occasion so I have determined this deadline is of high importance.  Now that all of my priorities are adjusted, I spend the entire day working on my project. It’s a good day, indeed.

A serious knitter will look at my pictures and say, “Ha! That’s not knitting, its crochet!” True, but I am not of the higher order of knitters who delegate the crochet hook to picking up dropped stitches and nothing else. I like both, and whatever gets the job done is the path I choose. In this case, crochet looked prettier on both sides than knitted circles. So let’s just get past that. I was inspired by a little scarf I had seen on Ravelry, called the Kaleidascope Cashmere Crochet Scarf by Sharon Sorken.  I’m not a flower girl so I knew I couldn’t make the scarf as shown, however, I rarely make anything the way it is presented. I decided something bright and geometric would better represent me. My knitting friends, Sara and Judy, helped me define my project and Sara helped me choose my yarn and colors.  Once I started making the circles, I quickly realized I had a lot of yarn endings to work into my circles, a lot of color changes to make and a composition to design. Sighhhh.  Not to be held back by a challenge, I decided I would just start making circles, and made about a dozen big and small ones. How are they going together? How do I make it lay flat? Why do I always do this? So many questions, but I like to behave as though I’m fearless, so onward I go. I thought this would be a little portable project, it’s not. I thought it would be pretty mindless and perfect for the car, it’s not. I thought it would be stunning, it is! With the details resolved, it has gone together effortlessly and quickly. It looks like a lot more work than it is. 

Because I have decided to take snow days, I think it will be ready for my event. I’m busy with paintings to frame, postcard distribution, catalog mailings, cookie baking and other various duties with deadlines but I have determined this scarf will be complete.  And because I’ve taken the random day off to work on my project, I’ve been able to stay grounded and calm in the midst of the nail biting, risk taking starting of a new business. My fingers are crossed that my business launch is a success, but no matter what, I intend to have my picture taken wearing this scarf.