Monday, March 24, 2014

Hastypearl's First Giveaway...And the Winner Is!!!!

Hastypearl's First Giveaway.....And The Winner Is!!!!

Well, I'm happy to announce here on my blog, that the winner of my first Hastypearl Jill!
An Etsy shop owner, and blog writer for Collected Mess!

It all started with my 100th blog posting.
I thought it would be a fun time, to take a moment and say, THANK YOU, to everyone that has dropped by to read, and leave encouraging words over the months.

After all, I see lots of blogs doing giveaways, and I had even recently won one, myself!

So, I thought about what I would enjoy receiving, and fresh on my mind, were some abstract...
I would even say...contemporary pieces, 
that I had recently done.
Well, yes, they have fibers, from my special collections included...after all, I don't think that I can ever 
JUST paint!

So, I made my selection. 
Put it in a frame that I use for staging and photographing.
Took my photos and Photoshopped them.
Wrote my blog posting and hit....SEND.

It NEVER occurred to me at any point in the process...until I hit ...SEND, that...



Well, I was wrong.

And you did! :) 

I don't normally consider myself to be insecure, but suddenly, 
I had a know that feeling, 
when you wonder if, 
"You will get picked to be on the team"!

I mentioned that realization to a wise man, and he congratulated me for taking the risk...
                                                          Nothing Ventured...Nothing Gained!                                                                                                                                           

Anyway, so here was the stash that I chose from.
When I added the beautiful Victorian Mesh Trim, 
Hmmm... I thought...Instant loom!, I wove in some of my favorite hand dyed ribbon and some tiny golden thread.

I was pleased how it looked in my Entry Hall, as it waited to go to its new home!

I wrote down all of the names of the "sweethearts" that Congratulated/Encouraged/Liked me, 
and asked Larry, to pick a number.
He hadn't seen the list, so he wasn't influenced in any way.

Number 7!!!

I Love how Things work out.
Jill, has been such a great helper with all things Technical.
If you EVER need someone, to hold your hand...and she can tell you that I've needed some hand holding...
SHE is the one to call!

So, thank you to ALL who have Given me the Thumbs Up, for all things Hastypearl.
It's REALLY meant So Much!

I hope that you will ALL hang with me for another 100 blog postings, as we see what kind of Hastiness, 
the future holds! :)

xoxo Laura

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

The Benefits of Selling Online Hastypearl

The Benefits of Selling Online

Well, that Title, sure sounds Business Like, doesn't it?

I'll bet you thought, I was going to have an outline, and lots of statistics to develop the reasons that you should sell your products online.

Well, I'm not! :)

But I will tell you, that when I decided to open my hastypearl Etsy shop, I had NO CLUE, 
of the personal Joys that it would Bring me.

Yes, I get pleasure out of the Hunt. 
Looking for and finding Vintage Items, 
that I think someone else will see and find amazing.

Yes, some of those Vintage Items find their way, into my Art Pieces.

But its this One Little Thing, that I decided to do, when I'm hand making and writing my 
Thank You Notes to each customer...

I Ask them...if they Want to, to be sure and let me know what they Will DO with their purchase.
Not every one does, but...

Lets see...

* There was the buyer, who was going to give her parents money for a new mattress, and she taped the money, to the Beautiful Vintage Doll Bed that she bought.

* There was the man, that bought four of my hand made Wire Ornament Hangers, to use on the set of a current Tony Award winning Broadway Play, because, the shapes in the Play Bill Logo, reminded him of the Curves in the Wire.

* Recently, a lady from England, bought one of my Shadow Box Shrines. 
She told me, that  she liked the piece, but instead of the image that was in it, she wanted something like it, to honor her deceased mother and brother, by placing interchangeable pictures and mementos in it.
We deconstructed it together, and discovered, that It could be customized, for her needs. 

* I made a custom Guest Book, for newlyweds with a new home, because it was important to her, for her guests, to record special thoughts about their visit.

* One lady, a teacher, bought several sets of Cracker Jack Charms, to place in bags, for her students to reach inside, and see if they could tell what they were touching, without using their sight.

* A very special new Etsy Artist/Friend, who hangs hundreds of her incredible handmade Christmas  ornaments on her tree, honored me by purchasing one of my Vintage Hinge Roofed Cottages, 
that she now includes with hers.

* Of course, there is a Friend, who has bought MANY of my Mixed Media Collages for her home, 
and my son, that nailed it for his girlfriend and grandmother, when he bought them each, one of my 
Birds in a Nest...

See, I could go on and on!

Its not just about the Sale.
Its also about, the Connection.

The Connection that I've already begun making in my studio, when I'm making art, and thinking of it as a spiritual service of worship, and KNOWING, that it will go to JUST the person that its supposed to :)

So, my last example, happened just today.

The note with the purchase said...Could you please make sure, that there isn't any information about the purcha$e in the box, because it is going to my "soon to be niece", as a gift.

Yes, I can do that!

I took a lot of care, to find the perfect tissue, and I made her a little card with her requested sentiment.

Because the buyer, cant be there to give the gift to the expected baby.

I'm not totally sure, but I'm guessing, that it has a lot to do with the fact, that she has her Own three month old first child, to care for!:)
(Remember those days?)

How do I know that?
Because I Asked...and she felt comfortable enough to chat about it with me!

Another Special Connection Made!

...and I look forward to Many More!

So, There!

I'm not sure how much of what I just shared, would come up in University business classes, 
but its whats Happening and Important, to me!

I don't know if I will ever get dollars rich from selling online, 
but I sure know that I have en"riched" my life for the experience.

I'll bet those of you who Sell Online, could say the same thing!

Happy Selling Everyone...
xoxo Laura  

Monday, March 17, 2014

Hastypearl Goes MAD CHEMIST !!!! I'm Mad For FRAGRANCE, That Is

Hastypearl Goes MAD  CHEMIST!

I'm Mad For FRAGRANCE, That Is :)

My mother has migraines. Serious migraines.
Thankfully, she has found a medicine, that helps her when she feels one coming on.

What does that have to do with Fragrance?
Well, its Fragrance, for Her and Many others, that triggers their terrible headaches.

It makes me very sad for that part of the population, because I ADORE fragrance, 
and don't know how I would live Without it.

NO rose, gets planted in my garden, that isn't Fragrant! :) 
Who wants to give up the precious square footage for one, that doesn't Smell Great! :) Celebrate Fragrance...I mean a Personalized...handpicked By You fragrance....

I thought that I would share a little experiment that I just did, this morning.
Its a Twist on Something that I have done for years, and I don't know why it took me so long to think of it.

As mentioned, I have made scented oils, lotions and hand soaps, for years.

Additionally, I LOVE to have reed diffusers placed around my home,
but, Buying them, has always been Very Expensive!

It finally occurred to me, that there is a recipe for just about EVERYTHING on the internet, and that there Probably was one for making your own Diffuser oils. 
I did a quick research and I was right...
I found out, that the process of making your own reed diffusers, Couldn't be Easier!

Let me show you how to do it!

Many grocery and whole food stores, have in their meds departments, Essential Oils.
If you haven't given yourself the "Gift" of spending a few minutes smelling these products, you Must!

So, I found several articles that guided me along.
One of them really spoke to me, because it explained fragrance, and certainly aroma Blending, 
as a 
Three Noted Chord.

There are... 

Top Notes.
Middle Notes.
Base Notes.

Just like music!

I got out my collection of essential oils...yes, they can seem expensive, but I have added to my collection for MANY years, and they still are very fresh. And Remember, you dont have to buy all of them, just the ones that you love, and you Only use a few drops at a time. 

I found it very interesting, that over the years I had bought more 
Top Notes and Middle Notes 
and only ONE, Base Note.

Just remember...this is Try to stay loose about it...

So, the process, is really just like cooking. 
If you use the basic recipe, you are VERY likely to come up with something that you Really like AND it will cost lots less than those that you find in the stores! 

Pictured the basic recipe.

I used Safflower Oil and Vodka and I diverted a little bit from the recommended 15 drops of essential oil method on the above recipe, in favor of the Three Noted Chord idea that I will soon explain.
However, BOTH work equally as well.

Yes, I have kept extra reeds and used bottles from reed diffuser previous purchases, but I also own wood skewers that I've used for Shishkabob making, and I have Chopsticks. 
Any of those will work.

And ANY small glass bottle that you have, will work fine.
I actually tuck my bottles behind things in a room, and you never even know that they are there...except for the soft, subtle fragrance that they emit.:)

Gather up your components.

The equation, that the article I mentioned suggests this:
In a well balanced fragrance...there are...

30% Top Notes
50% Middle Notes
20 % Base Notes

Like I said...Don't Get  Obsessive!
Just have fun!!!!

So, I put the oil and vodka in my bottle and put my finger over the top opening and give it a swirl.

THEN, I added my Essential Oil drops...Remember, a little goes a long way.
Im no mathematician, but I just broke the formula down to Roughly...

3 Drops Top Notes
5 Drops Middle Notes
2 Drops Base Notes

Again, I put my finger over the opening at the top of the bottle and swirled it again.

Cut your reeds if they are too long for your bottle, and place them in the oil.
After a while, you can turn the reeds over.
And then eventually, the reeds will become so saturated, that they no longer wick up the oil.
That means its time to replace them, with new ones!
It will take a Long time, for the liquid to completely evaporate.
Along the way, you can always add more drops of your essential oil, to freshen your bottles. 

The study of fragrance, goes back to the beginning of time, so I promise you, you can find a lot of interesting info to study.

So by now, you are probably wondering what fragrances fit into the Top, Middle and Base Categories.
I think that you wont be terribly surprised, but here are ONLY a FEW possibilities.

Keep in mind that there are hundreds...The Fun of it is choosing Your Favorites! 

 Top Note Examples...Anise, Grapefruit, Lavender, Lemon, Peppermint and Tangerine.

Middle Note Examples ..Bay, Cinnamon, Jasmine, Nutmeg, Pine, Rose, Ylang Ylang.

Base Note Examples ..Beeswax, Cedarwood, Frankincense, Patchouli, Sandalwood, Vanilla and Vetiver.

These are only a FEW suggestions!

You Can't Go Wrong!

And, if you want to simplify and just put 20 drops of Peppermint in your bottle, that will work, TOO!

I sprinkle a few drops of  Peppermint essential oil on my rugs, right before company arrives.
(I also used it when we had our house on the market, right before a showing!
Peppermint is invigorating!)

One of my last guests said that my 4 year old house still smelled Brand New!
I smiled...because...
I promise you, with two Large Country dogs, a cat and two humans...the house 
DOESN'T Always smell... Brand New! :) 


I think at the very least, you will have Fun, but more than that...fragrance, can Effect our Moods and we wont even know that it is there or why we are feeling like we do.

Take for instance, ANY modern store...they are all pumping well researched subtle fragrances in our little noses, selected JUST for stimulating us, to want to BUY their products!!

And finally, as I sit here typing this posting, with the heavenly combination of fragrances, still on my fingers, Don't Forget, to write down your fragrance recipe!
 You may blend one that you Really Love and want to make again...and I promise you...with all of the things that you do in a day...that recipe will fly Right Out of your sweet brain!

Keep in mind, that some Essential Oils can burn some skin so they should be studied and suspended in a carrier to dilute them. Oils are great for that purpose.... 

I hope this was fun for you.
Go Ahead...become a Mad Chemist, too!!!

I hope you will let me know what some of your successes are, because Ill probably want to Make It!!

Thanks for stopping by to read my hastypearl blog!
Oh...there is still time, to read my previous posting, and leave a comment for my 
First Hastypearl Blog Give Away...

Or, catch up with me on Facebook and say hello!

Go ahead and check it out.
My drawing will take place on March 23rd...

xoxo Laura 

...and by the way, my three combos were:

 * Lavendar, Ylang Ylang, Vetiver

* Lemongrass, Pine, Vetiver

* Peppermint, Rose Otto, Geranium  


Thursday, March 13, 2014

Happy 100 Postings, Hastypearl !!!!!! My First Give Away :)


Happy 100 Postings, Hastypearl !!!!!!

My First Give Away :)

I looked back at my First posting, on this blog, and it was ALMOST one year, ago!
I sure didn't time it that way, its just the way that it happened.

I'll say the typical phrases, like...How did the time Fly by so fast, because what can you say when it really feels that way?!

I can honestly say, that it has been a Pleasure to meet with you, and do nothing more, than just 
Share my Art and Life.
I've tried very hard to be true to that and to make reading my postings, worth Your While.

Every week, I get a report on the visits to Hastypearl, and it has Astounded me, just the sheer 
Geography of where You have all Come From!

As I've said before, this Blogging experience, has Stretched my Borders and brought me 
New Friends and Lots of Encouragement!

So...I thank you for Participating in this Journey with me!

Soooo, I've Participated in Give Aways before...and even Won one before, but I've Never DONE One!
So, as I Promised in my last posting....

Lets Do It!!!!!!!!

I spent a morning playing in my studio a while back...and yes, you've seen mostly Vintage Inspired Art
from me, but I secretly also enjoy a more Abstract Contemporary Vibe....

so, how about this....

if you would like to get in the Game, and would like to leave a comment below, or on Facebook, 
Larry and I, will make a Very Scientific selection...really...we will...and if I can find my way back to you to get your address, I will send you this Mixed Media piece, 
as a THANK YOU, for being such sweet readers! 

Ill leave the Give Away open until the evening of  March 23, my son Phillip's Birthday!
Yes, you can sign up, Phillip! ;)  


Along with Rust (my monitor is reading bright reddish orange), Chocolate Brown, Mossy Green and Shimmery Gold acrylics, I used a Great piece of unique Antique extra wide trim, and wove in and out, some beautiful Gold threads and some Hand Dyed Ribbon.

I hope that You like the colors.
Its really very pretty, in "person"! 

I photographed it in a frame that I use for staging my art, that has a mat for an 8 x 10 opening...
That size frame will be easy for You to find!

So, again...Thank You... from the bottom of my heart, for Receiving Hastypearl, and making me feel at home in this crazy, swirling, giant, blog world! :)

And why not lets say...Here's to Another 100 Hastypearl Postings!!!!

xoxo Laura

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Want to Meet My New Friend? Meet Marilyn Stephens! Interlaced - Textile Arts Hastypearl

Want to Meet My New Friend?

Meet Marilyn Stephens!

Interlaced - Textile Arts

I recently wrote on this blog, about how surprised I have been, about the personal connections that can be made on Social Medias.
Now, maybe those of you that have long been using them, will recognize that as a Novice Mistake.
I acknowledge...that I am THAT Novice...and I did make THAT Mistake :)

Long before I started writing this blog, or joined FB, I was a blog Reader.
Little by little, I found blogs that appealed to me...and not surprisingly, most have been written by people that express themselves is some form, artistically.

Initially, my decision to join Facebook, was for my business, Hastypearl.
I had NO IDEA, that its Greater Good, would be about meeting people from all over the world, who I would  eventually consider to be... my Friends!

Now, there are those, that think these things are random, but for me, I think there is an amazing amount of Providence involved. 
Especially when those very Meaningful Connections, begin to change your life.

One of those Special Connections for me has been...Marilyn Stephens!
Marilyn lives in Cornwall, England.
She is an Extraordinary artist...for sure.
But I think what I've learned Marilyn's REAL Gifting is, is what I call...
"Coming Up Under People".
She is People Supporter.
A People Builder.

One of the ways that I've seen her do that, is her persistent Promotion of artists/people on FB.
And when you Support people, there is usually a positive response.
You want Solid evidence of that?
That's easy.
Without being a Famous Celebrity or Rock Star ;), she gained 500 FB friends, on the DAY that she opened her Business/Artists page called, Interlaced-Textile Arts. 
And in a very short time, she as added another 200.
My guess is, Marilyn is or has made Many of those 700, feel like her Special Friend, just as she has me!    

Recently, out of the blue, she asked for my address.
She didn't elaborate.
I sent my address.

What I eventually found in my mailbox...Took my breath!

The images you are seeing, are of the gift that she sent.

Today, as I sat enlarging and brightening these pictures to post, I kept seeing the  
Some of them are mere specks.
On and On they appear!

Without knowing all of my personal Joys...she featured the word...Sing.
Yes, its a simple word, that could apply to many...but I don't care about that...It Applies To Me!
Those that know me, know that I have loved Singing, since I was a very young girl.
Marilyn, you hit the mark with that Choice!

Then, yes, shes seen pictures of my home, but whether she registered, that this gift, would literally be the exact color scheme of my decor...I'm not sure.

And Yes, the Leaves, the Leaves, the Leaves.
They Represent me.
I hope all of the rest of my days, will be filled with Nature and Gardening!

These, handmade cards, were included, and sent with special sentiments, that meant so much!

I guess, what I am trying to convey, and this will probably embarrass her, but, I don't think, that there are Many people that would GIVE, this Caliber of Gift!
Sell...Yes!...but I am Blown Away by this Excessive Generosity and its Impact on Me is Great!!!
I will frame this, and display it and I cant wait for my guests, to see it.
(Marilyn and I recently teased about swapping houses! Oh, I would Love to do that!)

Its likely, that my friends, wont ever physically Meet Marilyn, but I think they will quickly learn a lot about her, just by studying this piece.

I hope You have, too!

Im so grateful for Unexpected New Friends...and for Marilyn The Generous...for Sure.
Thank you so much for this Gift from the Heart, Marilyn! 

Before I go, I want to mention, that this is my 99th Hastypearl posting! 
HOW can that Be?
Im hoping to do something Special for number 100.
Im thinking maybe a give away!
Ive never done that and I know it would be fun :)
Im not sure what it will be, but I hope you will check back in and see!

If you would like to receive an email, letting you know when I post, just sign up for that on the right side of the page! 

xoxo as always, Laura  

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

South Central Texas Plants...Waking Up! 2014 Hastypearl

South Central Texas Native Plants....Waking Up!


Those of you that have read this blog for long, know that I'm Serious about my garden.
38 years of  Serious.

I know the challenges that my garden brings, just like All gardeners have challenges, 
and still...
we All keep at it!

This posting, was done because of some Facebook conversation today, 
in celebration of our 
State Flower...the Bluebonnet.

Bluebonnets are in the same family as many of your beautiful, Lupines.

In the Hill Country where I live, temperatures can be 8 degrees lower than San Antonio, 
which is just a few miles down the road.
Over the years, we have watched as we head out IH10, the Interstate to California, 
that after we pass 
Loop 1604 to higher ground, the temperatures, as it were... drop like a rock.

So, when I head into the metropolitan area of San Antonio, 
gardens can be a good bit farther "along", 
than mine.

That's the Fun of living where I do.

I'm also actually thinking of this posting as a gift, 
to some friends who are 

Not sent as a Bragging, but rather sent in LOVE.

I'm hoping that you will Remember, and send us a photo gift, 
when we are in the serious "scorching" days of August... 
The kind of endurance testing "scorching", that if you EVEN THINK of saying your 80 degree days are 
we will be Bite your heads Off! :) gift to you....a few Texas Natives...that are Waking Up! 

Texas Bluebonnet
Lupinus Texensis

...find a field of these and you will notice Two things...
an Amazing Aroma and Children, having their pictures taken :)

Mexican Plum
Prunus Mexicana

I jumped the gun a bit with this Mexican Plum photo, as it is just before peak bloom, but I couldn't wait!!

I promise that my neighbors, have driven past this Spring bloomer for years, and never once stopped their cars, to get out and smell the most AMAZING grape fragrance!!!

But Laura and the Bees will be there together, Smiling and Sniffing away ! 

I've actually thought about placing a sign under it saying...
"Have you Smelled this tree, today?" :)

Texas Redbud
Cercis Canadensis var. texensis

We can also successfully grow, in our shallow soils and rocky alkaline limestone, 
the Mexican Redbud and the Oklahoma Redbud.

There is even a White...Redbud.
I wonder why we don't call it a... Whitebud?  ;)

Mahonia trifoliolata

Sadly, home builders and home owners, Remove this beauty.
If they had ever smelled the flowers or seen the HOST of bees and butterflies pollinating their little hearts out, maybe they would have been slower to remove it only to replace it, with something that requires water and attention.

Close you eyes and imagine warm Butter and Honey...that's what an Agarita smells like to me!!!
As I approached this plant to take it's 20' away, I could already smell it!

So, there Dear Ones... Those still Buried in snow, 
My Texas photo gift of Early Spring to you.

Reminding you to HOLD ON!
It wont be much longer!!

I will Remind you, when our temperatures are down from 100plus to 85 degrees at 10 p.m., 
and our plants to survive, have long since gone into a self induced temporary dormancy...

to Please Send Pictures of your Lavish Gardens.

And remember...No Bragging!

I love that you come here to read my blog...

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Vintage Button Jewelry Mixed Media Fun! Hastypearl

Vintage Button Jewelry

Mixed Media Fun!

I know girls, that say that they like the "shiny stuff", and they will wiggle their ring fingers.

Well, my idea of the "shiny stuff" includes a more inexpensive kind of facet...
and that would include...Buttons.

Specifically...Vintage Buttons!

Its true, that every era, has decorated their clothing with objects of interest, and from the early days on...some kind of button was not only used for its closure function...but for interest and decoration, too.

I love a Large Coat Button, popular in the 40's and 50's and of course, the Victorians used fanciful buttons for everything ...including men's shirts and cuffs.

I've been making Button Brooches and Pins for myself for a long time, but it wasn't until this week, that I actually made some and listed them in my Etsy shop, called hastypearl.

These two Brooches, were made from combinations of Clear Buttons.
Look at the variety of textures and shapes.
They just Amaze me!

I've seen a lot of Brooches that are round shaped and maybe three buttons stacked on top of each other, but I wanted to do something more interesting than that.

The rectangle pin below has an added Art Nouveau shaped charm that dangles and I love that it makes a little sound when it taps the buttons next to it.

I added glass, silver and rhinestone beads to bring in a little sparkle to the mix, but with the amazing shapes of the buttons, they don't really need that much help!

You can wear them with anything really.
I put them on my coats and blouses, and it never hurts to dress up a cashmere sweater...either!

Thought you might enjoy seeing one of my latest additions to Hastypearl Etsy.

These make great gifts that don't cost quite as much as the other "shiny stuff"!
I hope you will click on over to my shop and see what I've been up to :)

Stay warm every one.
It cant be that much longer until Spring!

xoxo Laura