Tuesday, November 27, 2007

TQB Designs - Holiday Show Schedule

Okay - Here's the skinny on where to buy TQB Designs - direct from me - over the holiday season here in Portland, OR:

1. IHRH (I Heart Indie Holidays) - at The Wonder Ballroom NE Russell. This is a one day show on Sunday December 2nd from 12 - 5pm. There will be about 30 artists showing their wares and it should be great!

2. da Vinici Arts Middle School - This is bound to be one of the best Holiday Shopping Events this year. It takes place at the fabulous Portland Public School that has a arts centric curriculum. It is a 2-day event starting Friday, December 7th from 4 - 8pm & Saturday, December 8th from 10am - 4pm. This is great opportunity to help out one of our public schools as well as the children that attend, since 20% of all the sales go directly back to the school! There will be quite a large selection of artists at this event, so plan on attending - think of it as an investment in our children.

3. Crafty Wonderland "Super Colossal Holiday Sale". Okay - this is the Super Bowl of Craft Fairs! This one brags over 100 artists attending, on two floors, at the Norse Hall on NE 11th. On Sunday, December 16th from 11am - 5pm, the 1st 200 shoppers will get a fabulous "goodie" bag, so show up early to get in line. This is really an event not to be missed and how can you resist!? It's all our favorite "Crafty" Vendors in one place at one time - you're sure to finish your lists up at this enormous event. Plus with FREE Admission, a kids craft table - and don't forge the FULL BAR. What's better than throwing back a few and shopping! So, get to this one - you won't regret it.

4. If you can't make it to any of my shows, remember that I have several locations within Portland and Seattle, as well as across the country, where you can purchase TQB Designs. Please refer to my earlier blog entry on where to find a location near you!

Thank you so much to everyone that has made TQB Designs so successful! You have all made it so worthwhile...

I wish everyone a Peaceful and Happy Holiday Season:)

- Pink

Monday, November 26, 2007

Here's where to buy the goods - for the Holidays and Year-Round

First I would like to thank all of those that have supported me this year, either with purchasing my work or with your kind words - all of it is so appreciated and keeps me going day after day! It really means so much to me...

Anyway, here is the skinny on where to buy TQB Designs for the Holiday Season. Of course, if you are in Portland, OR - you can always get my work at my "flagship" store - Noun: A Persons Place for Things, on SE Belmont. This is a fantastic shop! The owner, Stephanie, has such a great eye for the gently and beautifully used, as well as the contemporary new for your person or home decor. If you haven't been by Noun, well... what's taking you so long?! Also on the East side, you can shop at PedX. Not only can you buy my work, but you can get a fabulous handbag and shoes to go with it - take care of all your accessory needs!

You can also purchase my work, if you live on the West Side of Portland, at a lovely little store on Liar Hill on SW Corbett, called Zeug. Shawn, the owner, also has a great mix of kitch and contemporary items for you and your home. She also has a great selection of cards. Lastly in Portland, you can shop at Silverado on NW 23rd.

If you live in Seattle, please stop by the Seattle Art Museum gift store. I will have quite a large selection there as well.

And of course, if you are lucky enough to live in or visit Hawaii, specifically Kauai, then please check out Julia Holman's charming shop called "Nest". Painted a beautiful, serene blue inside, you can find fantastic handmade things.

Finally, if you live in the Minneapolis - St. Paul area, Sherrie and Samantha have a great little "indie" shop in White Bear Lake, called Truly... shop indie goodness.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Friday Color Block - 11.09.2007

This is the month of harvest, abundance and giving thanks. I like to make it part of my morning, every day, to give thanks for my family and friends, a job that I absolutely love - what's better than making beautiful jewelry, and for really good 70% cocoa dark chocolate!

I believe that giving thanks, not only on that special day in November with your family, but everyday, will give you a much more positive outlook on life and bring you the things you most wish to happen. I give thanks for the good in people and some of the amazing things that people create in this world. Take a look around you and see the amazing things that others may do. Even if it's just buying lunch for someone who needs a little help; someone who is down on their luck. Though I don't have much, it makes me thankful that I'm not without a roof over my head!

This is definitely the seasons for giving - and I hope that you are giving handmade! The quality of a handmade gift isn't just in the item, but it's also in the anticipation. I absolutely love giving a handmade gift because I just know that the receiver will appreciate that a woman in Scotland, who makes beautiful felted flowers, made this gorgeous pin. I gave this one to my mother for her birthday, and she wears it on her coat everyday! People really care for handmade gifts so much more I've noticed. I've had customers say that they actually keep jewelry purchased from me in a separate jewelry box so that it doesn't get tangled or broken from the other jewelry they have. What a compliment!

So here are the color blocks for November - beautiful, rich shades of golden browns, in such versatile shade. Doesn't brown go with everything? I love paring it with unexpected colors like chartreuse or hot pink.

I hope that everyone enjoys the fall season while it's here and Happy Thanksgiving to Everyone ! Whether its a real gobbler or Tofurkey, enjoy everyones company and give thanks!


Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Weather Wednesday - November 7, 2007

This November has been quite wonderful so far. We here in Portland have definitely been spoiled by the warm October weather, and the blue skies have seemed to continue into the early part of November. Because of this, flowers in my yard seem to be confused. I looked out my kitchen window to discover that pansies I planted in May have started to bloom - and quite aggressively too! I loved to see them reaching for the light under all the leaves from my very naked maple tree.

Truly beautiful. If you don't live in the Pacific Northwest, you don't know what you're missing. Yes we do get many grey days, but man, the blue ones so make up for it and for me I seem to get a form of weather amnesia with these beautiful blue skies. Never thinking about the seemingly endless days of grey in store for December - February...

Monday, November 5, 2007

A Little Change

As many of you may know by now, I sell my work in many fine stores and galleries across the country. Well, the time has come for me to match the prices of these stores with those pieces I carry in my Etsy Store. These fantastic retailers help to support me and my work by ordering large quantities and showcase my work in such beautiful style. I know that many of you will understand, with the rising cost of living expenses, not to mention the increased cost of making sterling silver jewelry, I must finally raise my prices starting November 12th on existing items in my Etsy Store.

Many of my retailers have looked the other way, for over a year now, at my slightly lower Etsy prices, but alas, I cannot continue this dis-service to them. My prices will go up slightly, anywhere from $3.00 to $10.00 on the pieces in my store.

In order to off-set this I can make it a little easier with shipping costs. Again, starting November 12th, all shipping within the the United States and Canada is free and "Everywhere Else" is reduced to $4.00. As anyone who has ordered from me knows I package my jewelry in a beautiful little gift box covered in a festive paper with a riveted wrap band, folded paper crane ornament and enclosure card. This addition to your purchase will never change. Even though you know what it is, I think it is always nice to get a "gift", even if it may be from yourself! Additionally, for the upcoming Holiday Season - please let me know in your "comments" after purchase if you will require a blank enclosure card for gift-giving purposes - I'm happy to include a blank one with your purchase.

So for all those loyal to my work, thank you so much for your understanding and I know that even with this little change, you all will continue to support me and my work, just as my retailers do. I thank you so much for that and for the personal contact I get from each an everyone of you - it really makes my work so much more personally fulfilling.

Have a Peaceful Holiday Season!
- Pink

Friday, October 5, 2007

First Friday Color Block - 2007.10.05

What do we think of when fall hits: back to school, Halloween, sweaters and sipping a hot chocolate (or hot buttered rum) with your loved-one. Anyway, I love this time of year. It conjures up images and colors of harvest moons, Firebirds across the evening sky, with pinks, reds, oranges and dark purples. Don't we all have memories of running through piles of leaves and the smell of wood burning in the fireplace?

Every October I am reminded of the beautiful drives we would take, in Bellingham, Washington, down Chuckanut Drive this time of year with the leaves turning to autumn vibrancy. We would also have fantastic visits with my Grandfather, Keith A. Murray. I love the fact that his birthday was on Halloween. I miss him...

So, with this months color block I decided to give you all the "Harvest" colors in my collection: oranges, yellows, golds, much like those beautiful October evenings and memories sitting on the stoop, watching that harvest moonrise.

Colors here clockwise starting with strands: marigold, sunflower, tangerine, daffodil, honey, lemonade, duckling.

- Pink

Art in the Burbs - October 26, 27, & 28

I know that I told a few of you that I wasn't going to do any more shows until the Holiday Season. Well, the women running "Art in the Burbs" asked that I participate in their show this October and I couldn't refuse. I am a sucker for the arts, art education and especially anything that would benefit public school art programs.

So, you will see me, if you can make it out to the show: The Alberta Rider Elementary School, 14850 SW 132nd Terrace in Tigard , or you can call for directions at 503.431.4900. 20% of my sales will benefit the 14 Tigard-Tualatin Schools (elementary through high school), specifically distributed to their arts programs.

Event Hours:

Friday, October 26 7pm - 9pm (Friends & Family night)
Saturday, October 27 10am - 5pm
Sunday, October 28 11am - 3pm

Along with me, they will also have at the show:
Original artwork featuring over 100 juried Northwest artists.

Garden Art, Pottery, Painted Furniture, Jewelry, Fused Glass, Fiber Arts, Watercolors, Calligraphy, Pastels and Oils, and much more!

I also understand that the food at the even is provided by Rick Anderson of Typhoon Catering.

It sounds like you won't want to miss this event. And besides, you can help out a great cause and the kids as well. Art education and participation is so important for a well-rounded education.

You'll also want to see my set up - they are providing a 10x10 space and I don't often get that, so I will have quite a nice set-up and selection with all the added space and extra table.

Thank you to all my loyal customer - and I hope to see you there!

Monday, October 1, 2007

Extended Color Coverage - A Color Junkie Run Amuck

Hello, my name is Lisa and I am a color-aholic. I say screw the 10 steps and embrace your addiction. This is what I do: I make color samples, over and over, until I come up with exactly what I want. I love the process of naming my color themes. What can I say, my gimmick has to be theme centered! So, over the course of the Summer I came up with a number of new color combinations for the Fall/Winter Seasons:

First off, check out "500 Miles". For me it is reminiscent of driving I-5 through southern Oregon into California during the late Summer/early Fall. All the grass has turned blonde, and the fall wild flowers are blooming in muted shades, while the leaves start to change form green to shades of yellow, orange and red. (The colors here from top to bottom: crimson, tangerine, dijon, sangria, sweet pea, bone)

Also, the farthest southern destination you can drive in a day and still make it to a hotel at a descent hour: Ukiah, California (571 miles from Portland, OR). For those of you unfamiliar with this lovely little town - it really is quite centrally located to San Francisco, the Mendocino Coast and California wine country, and not too expensive.

The next combination I created is called "City Centre". I just loved the new colors I bought and had to use them again in another combo... to me it's a reminder of the sidewalks we stroll down (or run down because as city folk we seem to be in a hurry), and the softness of the periphery: the color of the autumn sky with its pinks, caramels and reds. Or, maybe its the leaf letting oxygenators, with the softness of their turning leaves and the hardness of the bark. At any rate, its a reminder that living in the city is beautiful in the fall... (The colors here from top to bottom: nude, pewter, mushroom, cinnamon, poppy, rootbeer)

Additionally, I had to create a combination with blue... I can't make a new combo with out some blue so "Water's Edge" is what a came up with. It includes a new green called "pine" that has a smooth, matte finish... quite lustrous, also included is another new color "bark". I love how the dark, dark brown sets off the rich mulberry. It really is the only purple bead I love, and use regularly. Lately, I have found it difficult to love purple beads. Most of the shades are hard to work with and want to fight with other colors - but not mulberry... sweet mulberry! (The colors here from top to bottom: faded denim, ocean, peacock, pine, bark, mulberry)

This combo so reminds me of when I lived in Seattle and when I would bike around Lake Washington. Such a gorgeous spot. And every now and then I would spot a grey heron taking a break in the grass on the shore. Really, if you haven't been to Seattle - PLEASE... make a stop. You won't be disappointed.

Lastly, I created "Betty's Apron" (colors include from top to bottom: duckling, tangerine, cinnamon mushroom, cilantro, chartreuse). Now, my mother came of age in the 50's & 60's, so Betty Crocker was very much a part of her young life. She still has my grandmother's old Betty Crocker Cookbook from the 40's! If you've never read though one of these old cookbooks, well... it hilarious! It has all kinds of advise on how to "look" for your husband... you get the idea - hilarious! At any rate... my mother loves aprons, and though her name isn't Betty, she was very much like Betty when I was growing up. She was always baking goodies and making home-cooked dishes with love. My absolute favorite were my mother's home made cinnamon rolls. That's the inspiration behind this color combination: I remember the cheerful greens and oranges in my mother's 70's kitchen, along with the warmth of the oven and the gorgeous smell of the cinnamon, butter and frosting filled dough... yummm...

So, I hope that color allows you to relive a beautiful or happy memory - it does for me every day, and please feel free to comment on your favorite color combinations I have created this fall. And, if you have any favorite colors - I'd love to see them..

- Pink

Thursday, September 27, 2007

So Happy! I can hear music...

Quite literally. I turned on my most favorite radio station here in Portland, KNRK Alternative Portland - 94.7, and they finally made their streaming compatible with MAC's - Hurray! So, for all those Mac users out there you can now stream KNRK and get all the bells and whistles with it. I love that you can see the name of the artist and song while its playing.

So check it out - it really is a great radio station and I guess my griping to them helped (sent them three annoyed, but polite, emails requesting Mac compatiblity).

Thank you KNRK! Now I can listen while I work... back to work.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Last Trip Before Summers End - Part I: The Oregon Coast

Yes, even though I have so much to do, I decided to play "hookie" and take a slam-out trip down to the Redwoods - those beautiful Ancient Giants of Humbolt County California. I visited as many lighthouses and I could along the way - but the really amazing thing about the trip was the weather: Sun! That's right folks, sun on the Oregon Coast; no rain, heavy wind, hoizontal sand, but sunny, warm, above 70 degrees and a breeze that was ever-so-slight.

I wanted to share some images of the Oregon Coast and the Redwoods, for those of you that haven't made it out to the West Coast yet or for those of you that do live near these feats of nature - get out there now while the weather is fantastic...

We first headed down I-5 to Eugene, which took us to Florence, on the coast. Our first stop was the Upquah Lighthouse. This is a beautiful, functioning and well maintained lighthouse on the Southern Coast of Oregon.

We next stumbled upon the Coquille River Beach. This was a find - mostly empty and the beach is absolutely beautiful. It's at the very bottom of the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area (perhaps the reason it was deserted, and that was great), so there was a spattering of dunes with flat, open beach. I forgot how much I missed the breezy salt air...

Before we headed out to the beach though, we had to visit the Coquille River Lighthouse- 1896: This lighthouse guided boats safely across the shallow beach at the mouth of the Coquille river until 1939, it was then abandoned and replaced by an automatic light. But, in 1963, the Oregon State Parks Division acquired the lighthouse and some surrounding land (from the Army Corp of Engineers), and they restored the lighthouse in 1978! Right now, and I actually didn't know this, there are only 8 remaining lighthouses on the Oregon Coast. The Coquille River lighthouse was the last one built and it is on the National Register of Historic Lighthouses

Visiting the lighthouse here, I was happy to see that it was once again, in the midst of a face-lift. It gave me renewed confidence in our State Parks that this beautiful treasure wasn't left to rot. I captured a great shot of my Honey (Jason) contemplating the lighthouse (and other important matters I'm sure)...

This beach was an ideal spot for taking pictures.

It had flat AND hilly terrain, while the sun was starting to set - it think it was around 6pm.

I love how the light worked with shadows on the driftwood and grassy hills.

Heading further South to Gold Beach and stayed the night, but we woke up early to head even further South to the Avenue of the Giants...

Part II - next Sunday.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Color Block Friday - 2007.09.21

First off - yes, I know, it is supposed to be "First Friday Color Block", but since I had quite a back log of orders, I thought I should take care of my customers before getting back to my blog - and I have missed it. See... look how intently I am typing this blog entry!

Anyway, as you know by now, Color Block Friday features a specific sampling of the TQB Designs color palate. This month I will take a look at what's hot for the coming 2007 - 2008 Fall/Winter season, and give you some food for thought (in the color realm).

This month has "New York Fashion Week", and I am so often inspired by what I see and so look forward to the new styles that surface. I get so much inspiration from the fabrics, shapes, textures, and just the energy that goes into this semi-annual event! So for all those color junkies, like me, check out the designers and see what they are creating... believe me it is quite inspiring! With all the new fashions and colors (according to Pantone as well) how can I keep from creating fantastic new designs and color combinations. You can also view the shows from last February 2007 - these showcase fashions and colors for this coming fall and decide for yourself what you like. At any rate, it's just supposed to be fun!

So, with that said, I want to give you my predictions for the best of the 2007 - 2008 Fall/Winter season as far my colors are concerned. Tangerine was hot this summer and I predict, with the addition of some deep reds, golden browns, caramels, deep pinks and greens that it will continue into fall. Also, combining my browns with champagne, and pearl, with a hit of any of my juicy berry shades, will be hot! I will also combine many of my whites to create a "winter coat" effect - besides, what's more chic than white no matter the season!
Also combining my strongest pink "nude" with black, smoke and pewter will bring in the metallic that continues to be strong. Gold is the color to have in your wardrobe this fall, and I will feature my muted gold "dijon" heavily this fall/winter, since it goes so well with reds and oranges, as on my new "Wishes" necklace.
Additionally, the one piece everyone should have this fall is a "Statement Necklace". Set aside the jewelry you need a magnifying glass to see - this fall and it's all about bold! Check out my Large Horseshoe Necklace (featured here in poppy), as well as my Giant Beaded Rounds! Big is in and tiny... well, save that for those hot summer days of 2008. You can also create that statement by layering necklaces. Mine work so well for that and I had more than one customer this summer purchase many to wear together: one layered the Sphere necklace in chartreuse ( I currently have one in "ocean" in my Etsy store) with the Petal Drop necklace in raspberry and another layered two of my Giant Beaded Rounds: one in wasabi and the other in maraschino - both fantastic looks!

I will create some of my own "Statement Necklaces" with long multi-sized bead lengths from 24" to 36" lengths as well as shorter lengths of 16" - 18" with large beaded rounds, as pictured here . Some of these necklaces will only be shown at the upcoming fairs I am
attending this fall and winter - and they will be quite spectacular! It's been awhile since I've made one of these and I really want to build up that selection for those of you that want one of my bigger and bolder pieces... I will keep you posted as to when and where I will show this year end.

Lastly, here are some of the new colors you will see this fall and into winter. I'm excited to use most of them together - I think they make a strong statement: bark, cinnamon, mushroom, bone, duckling, & cilantro.

My wish for everyone is to branch out with color this fall - try some tangerine and crimson with a splash of sage or muted gold. Layer it up or wear something bold on your neck, or wrist. Circles, Dots, Rounds, Spheres is calling you...

...and color block Friday should be back on track for October!

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Weather Wednesday - Yeah... now it's sunny!

Okay... the no.1 complaint I've heard here in Portland this summer is that "WE HAD NO SUMMER!". Now, I know that everyone expects blue skies and 80+ degrees, but with September upon us and summer coming to a close, we can still enjoy the beautiful clear skies and the somewhat warm nights (well... yes... you do need a sweater, who am I kidding).

Our September weather has been absolutely BEAUTIFUL! I love the 70 - 72 degree days and the crisp evenings. The leaves are starting to change already - check out my dogwood tree... aren't the leaves absolutely gorgeous?! The skies in the fall seem so much bluer and the morning air takes me back to my school days - ah, school days. They seemed so difficult and full of drama: History of China was so alien to me at the time, and I loved my History of Women class (yes, I was a history major), but I had to drop my Anthropology class - the professor and I just couldn't agree...

I am mourning the last of my flowers to bloom this summer... and I will have a few blooming into early fall - but my abundance has gone until Spring when the first snowdrops appear.

Until next month - enjoy the warm weather and flowers while it lasts...

- Pink