Archive for February, 2011

Wanna do an embroidery project with me?

Hello! So happy today is a friday. It’s snowy and cold, but somehow I don’t mind because there’s a weekend. And weekends are usually busy here..but it’s a weekend. And somehow that word just makes it all better. Yes?

So, this weekend, I am going to be working on some designs and projects that will be ready for spring. Which isn’t that far away (even though it’s freezing here and it’s hard to believe). And I need your help. I am getting some new embroidery patterns ready for the shop, but I am hoping to have quite a few designs….and I don’t think I’ll be able to hand embroider all of them in the next 3 weeks.

So…I’ve posted this on twitter, so some of you are already in on the deal…but I am proposing an embroidery Sarah Jane swap. I need some help with getting embroidery finished in exchange for a complete set of free embroidery patterns, and some other goodies.

If you are a die hard hand embroidery gal, or just really love a good embroidery project (oh…and these are easy. Nothing complicated, I promise!) please email me and let me know if you are interested. I’d love it! And, I’d love to see people come together over some fun embroidery. I love it. I love that it’s like drawing…just with thread. It’s the perfect activity for ‘before spring’ weather too, yes? Yes. I agree.

So, send me an email, and I’ll send you the details. This will be super fun…don’t be shy! I’d love to hear from you. Hmmmm…I like this idea of working on a project together as fellow blogger friends. We should do this more often. Ooooh…ideas brewing. Well…send me a note and we’ll chat!

Happy Friday all!

xoxo

sarah jane

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Wanna design fabric?

I just got an email this week from Michael Miller letting us know that we can finally spread the word!

This is pretty amazing. A chance to design a collection of fabric with Michael Miller? I feel SO lucky to be one of their designers (even though I haven’t even seen my own fabric yet!) and honestly, they are so amazing to work with. I feel seriously so, so, so happy working with them!

But there isn’t just a one win prize…the top 10 finalists get some pretty sweet deals too. You can read all the deets here.

Go crazy! Start designing!

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Organizing all that pretty stuff.

Pinterest. Have you heard? I just discovered it in January…maybe I’m slow…but I’m hooked.

Basically, it’s an inspiration board for your online collections of all that stuff you love online. Being an artist, I’m constantly bookmarking, saving and downloading files that inspire me, give me some reference for a project I’m working on, or just plain make me smile. Huge problem solved! No more clogging up my “ideas” and “reference” folders on my desktop…now keep it all online, in categories for you  to reference!

It’s seriously brilliant! I can just ‘pin’ any image I see online, and it goes right into my pinterest board. And it’s a great way to keep track of the location of the image as well, so that you can find the original location as well as give credit to the original creator.

But beware. It’s rather addicting. You can follow other people’s boards, and make all sorts of friends…it’s a heck of a lot of fun.

Do you have a pinterest board? Wanna follow mine? You can see it here. And if you have one…I wanna see:)

I just love brilliant people who think of these things. Don’t you love smart people? The ones that make your life so much easier? I do. I love pinterest.

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Drawing every day.

Ahhhhh.

I  just came back from a 3 day weekend with my husband. No kids. Just us! Oh my. I love  my kids….but getting away is really good. We haven’t done something like that in 3 years…and it was much deserved! My poor sister might have had the biggest dose of birth control after tending them for the entire weekend, but hey. She’s 20…so that’s good:)

Over the weekend I caught up on much needed sleep. But I also allowed myself to draw and doodle with no agenda. Being a working illustrator can be a challenge because it’s hard to justify the time to just “play.” No agenda. No deadlines. Just play.

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And this weekend, I recommitted myself to doing just that. I need to make time to doodle more, play more, discover my art more. That sounds really easy, but when I only really get 2 hours to myself at night to work, playing is hard to justify…as well as hard to find. But I also know that creativity isn’t something that just comes. Even for someone like me, who thrives in creativity, it doesn’t come naturally all the time. It takes constant effort. And that is what I hope my commitment to draw every day will do for me. Running a business and raising a family  and working on books and fabric, keeps me from drawing for just me. No one else but me…for sheer pleasure. And that’s made me a bit down. So….here’s to making it happen!

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Finn’s Room.

I love seeing room tours. Don’t you? This orange and grey nursery was featured on Oh Dee Doh yesterday, and when I caught sight of it I fell in love.  I love how she incorporated the “Take Me For A Walk” print. (I think that’s an 11×14 size if I’m not mistaken).

And the colors work great. Some of my favorites.

Lillie did a great job putting this room together. You’ll have to check out her blog and  photography too. Her photography is super wonderful!

Finn (don’t you love that name?) has a great set up. I’m still working on ours…but I go back and forth too much with what I want. I admire Lillie for just going for it!

Thanks for sharing!

**If you have any prints of Sarah Jane art that you wish to photograph and share, please do! I love seeing the spaces you put in them in and how you choose to display:)

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Moving.

There have been some changes around the studio, and since I’ve been running around I haven’t even had a moment to blog about them!

Where do I start….

The Short Version:

Sarah Jane Studios is now an in-home, 4 person operation…the 4th person being my lovely husband-manager.

The Long Version:

18 months ago (or so) I was at a point where I had to make some big decisions. We were trying to sell our condo, we were living in very tight-spaced temporary housing, having our 3rd baby, house hunting with the intentions of moving into our first home at any moment. I was also illustrating my first book, going through post-partum depression (though I didn’t realize it) and a whole bunch of other little things that all added up to having zero (no make that negative) time to run Sarah Jane Studios.

I really didn’t want to quit. But my family (and my sanity) came first. So I was ultimately willing to. But then I had an idea that saved the day. I hired Emily….the queen manager who came in and basically took over the management and business side of it all. And it was amazing. She ran the show, if you have ever emailed me and gotten her, you know she held the reins and made this studio run. She did such an amazing job while I moved, remodeled a house, had baby #3 (and Ooooooh…she was so cute! I digress….), finished my first picture book and designed a 20 design piece fabric line. She ran it all. Not only that, but she moved Sarah Jane Studios over to her home where  she set up an entire shipping room. It was the best set up!

But, the time has come for me to bring Sarah Jane Studios back home, and make it a family operation! Emily kept this business going when my only other option was to quit. And I am so incredibly grateful! But my husband and I have moved everything back home and are planning on growing Sarah Jane Studios together! I’m really excited…as it gives me more excuses to spend time with my favorite person. He’s pretty wonderful if you ask me. So, you may have already noticed an email from him…but if you haven’t….please say hello!

With the transition of switching Kenneth in and moving the shop, PLEASE forgive us if we’ve missed an email, or messed up an order. There have been a couple hiccups…and hopefully we’ve worked out the kinks! But please tell us if we’ve goofed….little mistakes are always bound to happen during transition times!

So, that’s the story. Then end.

But on a more personal note, I just have to say how blessed I’ve been to do this all.

People ask me, “How do you do it? Design, illustrate, run a business, raise three kids who are home all day…”

Well, the short answer is: I don’t.

I don’t do it all. I’m with my kids all day, and stay up late at night. I don’t have a beautiful laundry room…although I dream of one. Currently as I write this, my sink is full of dishes and I have no intentions of finishing them tonight! But, I have a wonderful family and we all work together to make this happen. I’ve really had so much help. An amazing husband who helps with the kids, the cooking and the dishes when I need it. Friends who love to trade play dates. Family who support and believe in what I’m doing. It all adds up to just that: a lot of hard work and support along the way.

And while I’m on that note, I just have to say thanks to all you who have been with me from the start. I really read all your comments, try to comment back and email you when I can! I started this business with my blog…by just putting up my art to get some feedback….and so I am rather sentimental when it comes to the journey I’ve been on. I value your support so much!

Sarah Jane Studios has a lot of wonderful things coming this year….so spread the word and come back often. There’s new fabric (lots of it by the way), a book, more designs and other wonderful goodies to be had this year. I can’t wait!

And also, we  really value your suggestions. A lot of you have taken the time to email and let us know what you’d like to see….and that means a lot. We love hearing your feedback! So thank you!

And yes…I’ll be taking pictures of the new space soon enough….still need to get that darn camera….

signing out…and back to work….

xo

sarah jane

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Loving.

Valentine’s Day. Today I am grateful for………

1. An amazing husband who is my best friend in everything. He never ceases to amaze me with his strength, his humor, his creativity and love for me (I can be kinda quirky and crazy at times….and he still is head over heels….amazing). And he makes really great food.

2. My babies who aren’t so baby any more. I can wake up feeling overwhelmed by the day ahead…but as soon as they start doing an irish jig in the kitchen while listening to Elizabeth Mitchell over breakfast (like this morning), my heart melts and I can’t help but be the happiest girl.

3. My home. After 3 1/2 years of searching for the “right” place, we found it. It may not have any furniture yet, but it’s a roof over our heads and a yard full of magic.

4. My faith. I’d be half the person I am with out it.

5. Good parents. They are my best friends. Living far away is hard, but thank goodness for unlimited phone time!

6. My talents. I know that sounds weird, but I count it as a blessing that I do what I do. Really. Maybe it’s that I’m never bored. Or that when I’m overwhelmed I can open my sketchbook and find therapy. Or maybe it’s that I feel blessed that I can add beauty to this already beautiful world. What ever it is, I am grateful.

My heart is so full! Happy Valentines Day!

And don’t forget to enter into the valentines day giveaway below! It ends tonight (Monday night) so come on over!

14/02Family
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Random Giveaway: Shabby Apple

I am so thrilled to be offering a random giveaway this weekend. I talk a lot about kid’s books, kid’s art, kid’s decor, raising kids….so I am so happy to be offering something for YOU! Something pretty to make you feel gorgeous.

Have you heard of Shabby Apple? Ok. If you haven’t, you will love them. If you have, you know you already love them.

Dresses. How hard is it to find every day dresses? Not just every day, or weekend, but dresses with personality and flair.

I love their new “period” dresses that are their newest line right now. But there’s more. So much more!

Shabby Apple approached me about doing a giveaway for my readers, and I was thrilled cause I know most of you (if you are anything like me) could use a new dress. I mean really….who doesn’t want wear this?

Or this?

Or this or this or this?

I can only give away one dress to you (I know…bummer). And in honor of my Audrey Hepburn inspired week, I’ve chosen this one:

The Bonheur Dress.

stunning? Yes. Beckoning warm weather? Yes.

But….if you don’t win or if you want to grab a few of your own, you can get 10% off your order when you enter in “SARAHJANE10off”

Here’s how you enter:

  • Leave a comment below
  • Make sure to enter in your email where it promts you so that I can send you a note when you win
  • Giveaway ends Monday at 10pm EST
  • Winner will win ONE Bonheur Dress in the size of your choice.
  • Readers can get 10% off all orders through the end of next week.

Please note: The giveaway includes all domestic and international entries, BUT Shabby Apple cannot ship internationally, so the 10% can’t apply. But I’ve offered to personally ship to an international winner, since I love their dresses so much, and I know you will too:)

And if you are a facebook person, here’s where you can link up to them to get the inside scoop on updates and special offers.

Have fun! Knock yourself out…it’s valentines day!

**Fine Print: This is not a sponsored giveaway. I have not received any compensation or free stuff. I just really love their shop, and they really love you! Bottom line.

And PS: Only 13 Calendars left in the shop! And If you need some printable Valentines cards (on sale!), you can get them here. Happy Weekend!!!

{ COMMENTS CLOSED}

10/02.
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