5th Annual Studio Sale this Sunday

My good friend and fabulous artist Charlene Brown and I are doing a one day studio sale this Sunday. The sale is taking place at clayhaus studio at 1178 McMillan Avenue, 10am to 5pm.

Looking to get some Christmas shopping done? Do you have an eco-fashionista on your list? A piece of my jewelry might be the perfect gift for her. I have a line of silver jewelry that is made from recycled pure silver, beach glass I collected on my travels and recycled fresh water pearls . All pieces are handcrafted and one of a kind.

Or are you looking for a beautiful piece of pottery for someone on your list? To find out more about Char’s amazing pottery check out her website clayhaus.com

Come by the studio and get your Christmas shopping done this Sunday, Dec. 1 – 10am to 5pm! If you can’t make this Sunday and prefer online shopping go to anjastudios.etsy.com

Ciao

Anja

Recycled silver and sterling silver

Recycled silver and sterling silver

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DIY Christmas gifts – T-Shirt quilt

My favorite time of the year (except summer) is the time leading up to Christmas. I love how friendly people are, the beautiful Christmas decoration, Christmas music and I love giving gifts. The process of looking for the perfect gift or even better making the perfect gift for somebody you love. The anticipation of them opening the gift and the happiness and surprise on their face. I often make many of my Christmas gifts for my family and friends and this year was no different. I made Christmas ornaments for my friends (watch for DIY part 2 for instructions), I framed one of my screen prints for K. and the pièce de résistance this year is the quilt I made for him. He is a huge Star Wars fan and has been holding on to his old Star Wars T-Shirts. They have been sitting in a bag in our basement for years and he has refused to get rid of them. Years ago I had seen a quilt made from old T-Shirts and I thought that it would be a perfect way to recycle his shirts into something he can continue to use. He absolutely loved it and we have been enjoying naps on our sofa over the holidays covered with our warm and eco-friendly Star Wars quilt.

It was easy to make, so if you have a collection of band T-Shirts or souvenir shirts from your travels, this is a great way to make something that you can continue to cherish for many years to come. Here are step by step instructions with some pictures.

T-Shirt quilt

T-Shirt quilt

  1. Wash all your T-Shirts.
  2. Layout your shirts on the floor and decide on the size for each square (I made them all the same size but you could have different sizes. I decided on the size based on the shirt with the largest graphic).
  3. Create a template from a piece of cardboard.
  4. Place the template on each shirt and outline using a fabric marker or you can also use a Sharpie and then cut them out using scissors.
  5. Once you have all shirts cut place them on the floor and decide on the layout (I didn’t have enough shirts so I used the back of some of the shirts to add blank squares).

    Decide on the layout

    Decide on the layout

  6. Start sewing each horizontal row by placing the first squares together (with image area facing each other) and sew using a straight stitch. Then add the next square etc. until you have each horizontal line sewn together.
  7. Before you sew all the individual rows together, press the seams apart on the back and pin in place.
  8. Place the first two of the horizontal rows together (image area facing each other), make sure to line up the seams and pin in place.
  9. Sew using straight stitch and repeat with all rows.

    All squares sewn together

    All squares sewn together

  10. Decide on the size of your quilt (the size of your sewn together T-Shirts or do you want to have a border around).
  11. Choose a fabric for the back (I decided to use a nice warm fleece), and buy quilt batting (make sure to get some extra batting).
  12. Place fleece on the floor add quilt batting and place T-Shirt front on top.
  13. Use large safety pins to connect all 3 fabrics together (I used one safety-pin per square).
  14. If you are making a border with the fleece like I did, fold over the fleece and pin together.
  15. Pin corners.
  16. Sew along the border of the quilt.
  17. Sew the corners (I sewed them by hand with a blind stitch).

    Hand sewn corners

    Hand sewn corners

  18. Connect all 3 layers together throughout the quilt by placing a couple of stitches wherever the panels meet. This will ensure that the fabrics don’t move around. Remove the safety-pins.

    Place a couple of stitches to connect all 3 layers of fabric

    Place a couple of stitches to connect all 3 layers of fabric

  19. Snuggle up on the sofa with your warm quilt and have a hot tea or a hot chocolate.

If you have any questions just let me know. Enjoy!

Love

Anja

air necklace available through ethicalcommunity.com

My air necklace is now available through ethicalcommunity.com . I will continue to add more jewelry over the next few months.

“Wear air in support of lung cancer research”
We all need air to breathe and to live. I have seen first hand the struggle of not getting enough air into your lungs anymore. The concept is graphic, clean and creates a nice balance between the simply graphic type and the organic shape and material of the beach glass. The square air pendant is handmade from recycled .999 fine silver and is combined with a piece of beach glass. Each piece of beach glass is unique and different just like the lives effected by lung cancer.

Each of my fine silver creations is individually sculpted by hand, imprinted, sanded, fired and polished creating a one-of-a-kind piece. The fine silver used is made from 100% recycled silver, reclaimed from photographic and x-ray materials and combined with water and a non-toxic binder. Through the firing process the clay binder and water are burned off and a strong, sparkling and eco-friendly piece of jewelry emerges. All silver scraps, shavings and dust are collected and reused to help save our planet.

100% of the profit is donated to lung cancer research.

Make sure to check out the rest of the site. It’s a great resource to find out about ethical products from beauty products to food to beautiful things for your home.

Ciao!

air necklace

Mother earth

I wanted to share this beautiful video in honour of all environmentalist that are fighting every day to protect our world and are willing to put their lives in danger to do so. Sadly there are many that have lost their lives at the hands of criminals that are exploiting the earth and its inhabitants. It makes me sad and angry but I am so thankful for such incredible people who are fighting for all of us and are fighting to protect our home “mother earth”. We can all do our part. Even small changes count. Just think of the impact small changes can have if millions of people participate.

Be gentle to mother earth! We can’t live without her!!!!

Ciao

Humane Society visit

Over lunch a few of the girls at work and our dogs (Luna, Ninee and Guss)  went to the Winnipeg Humane Society. We had seen on twitter that they were in need of rawhide for their dogs, so all of our dogs gave up their allowances to buy them some treats. We even got a tour of the entire facility and got to see all the puppies. On top of having wonderful staff and volunteers, the building is also very beautiful and environmentally friendly. They tried to include as many local building products as possible and they even have a rainwater collection system. Just all around an incredible place!

Here are a few pictures of our trip. Luna also got a new winter jacket from their cute little store.

Ciao

cutie

sharing the love

will keep me warm this winter

Xmas sale

I can’t believe it’s that time of the year already when we all start thinking about Christmas shopping. My good friend and fellow artist Charlene Brown and I have joined forces this year and are putting on a Christmas sale at Charlene’s studio. Please come visit us….drink some coffee….do a little shopping (pottery, jewelry, photography and textiles)….Nov 26 & 27, 12-5p, 1178 McMillan.

Xmas sale

Great painting technique

We are currently renovating the upstairs of our house and I have been thinking of doing something special on the wall behind our bed. I love the look of wallpaper but didn’t really want to go through the hassle, plus if you get tired of the look then it would be so much harder to change. I was asking myself why I couldn’t recreate the look of wallpaper with paint. I’m an artist after all! I started looking around on the internet for stencils and found lots of really nice ones. Most of them a bit too girly for K. but I ended up finding one that we both love. A great pattern of circles overlapping. Modern, clean and geometric!  I got the stencil in the mail  last week and this weekend I finally got to try it out. We painted the room in 2 different greys (Benjamin Moore Whitestone and Gull Wing). The original idea for the stencil was to use a varnish only so that the effect would be very subtle. I did a test strip in the studio and realized that it worked well on lighter colors but that the Gull Wing grey was too dark for it to work, so I adjusted the plan and used the Whitestone for the stenciling. It took 5 hours to complete but it is so worth it. The end result is amazing. Here are a couple quick photos. I will make sure to blog again once the bamboo hardwood floor is down and the room is put back together.

Here is what you need for this project:

•Paint – 0 VOC (better for you and the environment – you don’t use very much paint so maybe you can use up some paint from a previous project. Think green!)

•Dense  paint roller

• Masking tape

•Stencil (I got mine at cuttingedgestencils.com)

•Spray adhesive (optional – I didn’t use it and it worked out fine)

•Lots of patience!

Just think of the possibilities. Be creative and green at the same time.

Ciao

Anja

First row of stenciling

worth the hard work