31 May 2011

Some Fun Links


Here are some fun sites that I've posted on Facebook, but I thought that some other folks (who aren't so fond of the social media sites) might enjoy them, too! Please let me know what you think!


25 May 2011

Blocked


So often people comment on being blocked, hitting a dead end, suffering from writer's block, things not coming together, false starts, ....

I don't buy it! That so-called blockage is necessary for you to get to the next step. It's a gift from your mind that helps you organize your thoughts, focus your creative energy and complete - or start - a project. The intricacies of our brains are so far beyond my understanding, that I've learned to accept the seemingly random thoughts as what needs to be.

Some time ago, I worked in the corporate offices of a Fortune 50 corporation, wore a suit, carried a brief case and answered the phone with my name, as required. I was lucky enough to have many creative jobs not normally associated with such organizations. Most of my colleagues would have described me as fast, thorough and accurate. But, that was rarely true.

I can't tell you how many times I spent a whole day - in the middle of a project - just rearranging my desktop, sharpening pencils that I didn't use, searching for paperwork I didn't need. I'd panic at the end of the day, thinking that I wasted so much time. Would I be found out?

Well, what I found out was that this was my mind's preparation time. Somewhere in the inner recesses of that complexity of synapses found in so many brain cells, I'd finished my project completely - in my mind.

The next day - or maybe just minutes later - I'd sit down and pound out the work - quickly, thoroughly and accurately.

I came to know myself - I wasn't procrastinating, or hitting a brick wall, or blocked. Rather I was working the entire time. Only one of my bosses understood that.

Now that we have our own company, I find myself organizing a bit differently, moving my stapler, finding a new pen, bothering Pete. And, then I sit down and write a blog just like this one.

So, please, embrace your blocks, understand that your mind is filling in the holes or peeking through the cracks, getting ready for that burst of creativity that is just a moment, or maybe an hour, or a day away.

23 May 2011

Memories, Treasures, Trash & Merchandise


I made this tray in the early 1980s for my Mom. She kept it on her dresser. I decided to sell it in SilverCrow's Etsy Shoppe.

I like to be as thorough in the descriptions of what we sell - whether it be a 25¢ trinket or a $1,000 diamond ring - or anything in between. So, I started to measure it and Pete calculated the shipping charge. And, all of a sudden, this nice tray changed from my Mom's treasured keepsake into merchandise. But, that's really OK. Really.

I'm not trying to convince myself. It really is OK. We've moved and combined households so many times, that it almost feels like a hobby (almost). And during those times, we've acquired things and we've sold, donated and given away other things. Oh, yes, and we've occasionally actually discarded things. (I just can't bring my self to say, "thrown away.") This makes way for the treasure trashers to discover things before the garbage truck makes a clean sweep. I just love it when things disappear and become part of someone else's life.

I've been a treasure trasher most of my life. I've found antique windows, beds, chairs and more. With a little work they become full of life again. In fact, Pete's stool was commandeered back in the 1990s in Squirrel Hill late one evening. But, I digress...
When I created this needlework for my Mom, it was originally meant to be for the wall. But, there was really nowhere to hang it. So a friend of mine made the tray. My Mom loved the pattern because, at the time, I lived in the Allegheny West section of Pittsburgh (part of the North Side/North Shore) - in a Victorian townhouse that had been renovated into apartments. It was a great apartment and my Mom loved it as much as I did. My Dad always just wanted me to move back home, but he was supportive.

This tray has great karma associated with it. I'd love for someone to treasure it as my Mom had.

I would love to keep it, but we're running out of room. And, rather than keep things I made for my Mom, I'm keeping the things she made for me.

If you'd like to know more about the tray, you can find it in our Etsy Shoppe.

10 May 2011

SilverCrow's 3rd Challenge: The Secret Life of Pets (or Any Animals)!

Gypsy's Secret Life
(Not a Real Entry)
SilverCrow's 3rd Challenge - The Secret Life of Pets (or Any Other Animals)
We don't care how you interpret it! We just want you to enter. We saw so many interpretations on our last challenges that we just couldn't wait for this one!

See all the Entries on Facebook - Even if you Don't use Facebook
Here's the link: The Secret Life of Pets Challenge #3 Photo Album.

Vintage Chenille Snail with Genuine Shell
What to Make
You can make anything: jewelry, cards, books, altered art, shrines, journals, journal pages, scrapbook pages, furniture, or anything else! While we welcome photos of your favorite pets or animals exposed in their secret lives, they can't be entered in the challenge unless the photos are actually a part of your project or if the project includes the pet.
Bad Habits Postcard
Categories
There are no categories this time.

What to Use
Use at least one SilverCrow Creations product - old or new - from Etsy or our website. No purchase necessary - just as long as we sell the product - you don't even have to buy it from us.

Hand-Carved Dog Figurine
How to Enter
Post a picture on SilverCrow's Facebook page or email us. Just be sure to tell us where the picture is so we can find it. Please send pictures as either JPG, TIF or BMP files. Maximum 3 entries. Please make sure that you tell us a little bit about the animal entering and the dimensions of your creation. It's hard to tell size from a photograph! And, be sure to let us know which of our products you used in your project.

Deadline
Saturday, June 4, 2011. Extended to Monday, June 13, 2011 - Folks asked for a couple of more weekends!

Saint Francis of Assisi
Protector of Animals
Entry Gift
Secret Life Of Pets & Animals Collage Sheet

Everyone who enters will receive a free digital collage sheet featuring pet and animal secrets. Of course, we'll need your email address and of course the download will be large enough for you to use. If you're already a customer, we probably have your email address. If not, please email it to us. If we can't find you, we'll let you know via our blog, Omar's Features on SilverCrowCreations.com and on Facebook.

White Love Rat with Red Hearts & Pink Tail
Prizes
First Prize: $30 SilverCrow Creations Gift Certificate.
Second Prize: $20 SilverCrow Creations Gift Certificate.
Third Prize: $10 SilverCrow Creations Gift Certificate.


Fine Print
By entering the contest, you allow us to post your photographs and your name or pseudonym online and in print.

Dolly, Flossie & BoBo Duke
Les Chiens à Paris

05 May 2011

Cinco de Mayo Party Give-Away Winner Announced!

Congratulations to winner, Merle Stengel, of Montana! YAY! Your party is on it's way to you!

Look for a new challenge and another give-away coming soon!


03 May 2011

Cinco de Mayo Party Give-Away

Hey, now, wouldn't you love to get this neat Cinco de Mayo Party in a Box give away from SilverCrow Creations? It includes a full box of cascarones, a vintage tin noisemaker, some bamboo finger cuffs, 2  fiesta crow pin-back buttons, a skeleton pin-back button, Frida Kahlo sticky notes, Mexican Folk Art temporary tattoos, a multi-color arcade garland and a bunch of other stuff that we keep adding. So far, the package is worth over $45.00!

The give-away ends on May 5, 2011 at noon. All you have to do is follow our blog, follow us on Twitter or LIKE us on Facebook. If you already do, please comment here on our blog, or on Twitter, or on Facebook. Be sure to let us know that you are doing one of these by commenting, or we might miss you!

We'll list the winners in an Excel spreadsheet in alphabetical order by first name and then we'll use a random number generator to pick the winner.

We'll need your address if we don't already have it. We'll let you know. The package will be mailed on Wednesday via Priority Mail (to the USA) or via First Class International Mail (to anywhere else). So, when the winner is announced, we'll need that address! If we don't have it, we'll need a fast response, or, we'll get another random number! Good Luck!