Archive | June, 2013

In the Zone: Weaving the Weave

24 Jun

“Tell us about your favorite way to get lost in a simple activity — running, chopping vegetables, folding laundry, whatever. What’s it like when you’re in “the zone”?

Photographers, artists, poets: show us LOST.


We do a lot of work that takes tons of time but in the big scheme of things is classified as a simple activity. Weaving wire hour after hour is one of those things we do most. Each piece of weave takes many hours to make yet we love to do it.



Weaving is more than just playing with wire. Weaving is a place of peace as we enter “the zone”. We all have been there and when we find something that puts us in the zone we seem to want to do it again and again. I have been known to say that weaving is hard and takes lots of time but for us it is also a form of physical meditation. I have known many people that have tried their hand at weaving Viking knit and I hear over and over how hard and boring it is. Lots of people try it, but it is not an art that flows for them even though they find it to be stunning they end up not finishing and come to us to purchase a piece of fine wearable art in the form of jewelry. The above piece is 7 wires woven at the same time. I find that getting into the zone with multiple wires is different than when I work with 1 wire repeating the motion over and over again such as was done with the following piece:  


While in the zone everything slows down and my mind is so focused it is amazing. As a person that has to multi task most of the time the peace and inner tranquility is a joy. Even with my mind calm and slowed down to hyper focus my hand flies and the piece creates itself in through my movements. Every weave and every pull of the wire is guided by my hands and my mind but it is only guided. Each time I pull the wire there is a surprise that is awe inspiring, and the thrill of the “next magical moment” is part of the draw to keep coming back and creating more.


What puts you in the zone? Please share…


Silver Linings: event challenges

17 Jun

“Write about something you consider “ugly” — war, violence, failure, hatred — but try to find beauty, or a sense of hope, in your thoughts.

Photographers, artists, poets: show us UGLY.




Being a business that is run online and local events is hard. We go to bazars, markets, and shops trying to get seen and if all goes well to have our craft purchased or at the very least admired. The “trade” is hard fought and the behind the scenes can get ugly as artisans compete for the limited attention and funding that is out there in the area. If there is a jury process one would think that spaces are more limited and once you get your foot in the door that other crafters would be nicer and more relaxed but the reality is it is even harder to keep your spot with many other business people complaining about some mild infraction of the rules (especially if competition is starting to cut into their profits) and “clicks” form more and more as if we are reverting to our youthful teenage years all in the name of “making it” and trying to not just survive but to maybe even thrive as an artist in a tight economy.

We have seen business after business make it into an event as a hand crafted item pass all the inspections to only be forced to leave after an older business finds profits going down and complains that there is no way that the newer people are “really” making their own product or that is it later found to be an inferior quality craft. People ask “How can this be?”, “Where did these people go?” and “Is this true?” but the sad truth is we do not know as we are not on the “in” with such things but see and hear enough to wonder.

Being in business we want and need to succeed. We find a level of fulfillment knowing our product, our craft means something to other people and it is deemed worthy of purchase. We get that warm feeling of pride and joy when what we love is praised. This “cut throat” mentality is sad but spurs us on to working harder and providing a better product at every turn rather than sinking to the harsh side of the business. This is good and fits the model of the “American way” with competition through commerce. We are forced to not the “norm” and to think outside of the box to come up with fresh new ways to get out product out there and to be seen. We are forced to create anew and not be pulled down so that we can thrive as an artistic small business while keeping to our mores and finding the joy in what we do instead of reverting to the sense of “just another job” and this is all well worth the challenges that may come at the hands of others.

To learn more about Entwined Vines check us out on Artfire

Have you seen or experienced a similar form of challenge that ended as a true silver lining? Please share your thoughts, experiences, and how you survive…



Riding the Crazy Train for June 2013

7 Jun

Entwined Vines tries to stay active in a number of guilds on Artfire. One of the guilds that we absolutely love being a part of is the Crazy Train Guild. The members of this guild do many activities to help each other along and one of those includes running two day crazy train rides. Every other day we pay special attention to one of our guilds studios. Today’s blog we are show casing all of the Novembers riders and we hope you enjoy checking all these amazingly creative and skilled studio’s and then leaving comments about some of YOUR favorite studio’s and items



“Adorebynat offers high quality handmade party decorations and supplies. Banner, gift tags, teabag favors, invitations etc”




“It all started with the simple desire to have one of Katwise’s creations and the bright idea that Dinie could make one herself. A year and a half later, after having cut up sweaters on the spare room floor for a year and a half, Erin told Dinie she had a serger and could put it together! We had a lot of fun (and frustration) and decided to make more.

We began constructing bags and purses and jewelry out of some of the upcycled materials we found in our sweater searches. Green Faery (previously just Erin) became a burning desire to go to the public and see if they’d be interested in our creations!

We’re just two ladies having fun in our spare time and hoping to make a little extra money to boot!

We hope you enjoy our sweaters and upcycled items as much as we do! It’ll be hard to let them go, but we most certainly will! ;)”





“My wife Lola & I live in Garfield, NJ. Lola has loved doing all sorts of crafts for many years and our family and friends have enjoyed all the different things that she has done from ceramic pieces to crocheted scarves and baby blankets as well as her home cooking! Mmmmm.. We are semi retired now and I have also become involved with crafting and quite enjoy it. I especially enjoy designing our bracelets and brainstorning new ideas. With the encouragement from our family and friends we have been doing Craft Shows, Festivals, Home Parties and E-Parties.   I hope you enjoy our work and come back to us over and over again!”





“Hello! I’m Faith. I have been designing my own label of ecofriendly handbags for the past 4 years. Prior to being full time in my small business since last year, I have been a general physician for ten years. I’m putting my profession on hold for now so that I can have more time to be a mother, wife, sister and a daughter to my cancer survivor mother and aging father, and at the same time pursue my passion.

All the fabrics I use are either handwoven, hand loomed or crocheted by local hand weavers from different parts of the Philippine. Hand weaving is the livelihood of many farmers here in the Philippines when it is not sowing nor harvesting season to put food on their tables. I want to help them by buying their fabrics. I think the fabrics are the most beautiful parts of my handbags. I’m proud of our local handwoven fabrics and I want to promote them to the world.

I have a small team actually: Charles makes the handle, Glorienda makes the body of the bag, Eden makes the top zipper and embellishments while I design all  my bags and buy all the stuff we need for the handbags. I am also helping these 3 people because they don’t have work anymore. They used to work in my auntie’s handbag factory which closed in 2006 due to global recession.

I believe each of our handbag is beautiful because it is a result of a collaboration of talents.”




“My name is Peggy Wickham. I’m fairly new to selling my paintings. Although I have a Bachelor’s degree in Art, I spent many years as Mom to my family of 5 sons- and when they grew up and moved out, I worked as an Activity Director in a retirement home. I painted during this time but only began to sell my work when I took a course with a local artist on how to do just that. She encouraged me, and “showed me the ropes” – and so here I am!”




“Well, let me see…I guess you could say that Im a crafter of all trades:)

I love love love to create beautiful things, so I seldom limit myself to one specialty. I sew, crochet embroidery paint and make jewelry. In the past I was an avid stain glass and mosaic maker, however my poor hands started to get worn quickly. In my spare time, I love to get outdoors and photograph nature. I enjoy walks on the beach, quiet sunsets and watching birds.

Always changing like the seasons while staying true to myself and others!”




“Princess Posh was born after the birth of my daughter in 2009. I loved dressing her up in decorative headbands & she always received so much attention (her chubbylicious cheeks may have had something to do with it too). I started making them and all of a sudden my company was born to a stay at home mom. Once my son arrived in 2010, I put my business on hold due his colic and sporadic sleeping habits 🙂 In February of 2013 I decided I was ready to get back to work, especially to the work I love so much.

I have a couple of other passions, including … shoes!! Many may say, “What woman doesn’t?” but I am obsessed!! I adore shoes! So….. I developed my private label shoe line & am using my obsession to create your dream heels blinged with genuine Swarovski Elements. They are absolutely stunning!! You will be the talk of the town and the hit of the evening!

I am constantly working to create new posh items for babies to women. I have recently added my bling pacifiers and wipey cases and am working on new items as I write this. I hope you will come back to see what is new.

Last but not least, my other passion is the 4-legged babies of our world. I am heavily into dog rescue and will do what I can to help an animal in need. My dream is to have a dog rescue so I can just “go get them” (as my daugther would say) so no more animals have to die. In the meantime, 5% of all retail sales go toward the rescue of dogs in need.”



“I love to create one of a kind stories in a variety of mediums. I started making things at a very early age, taught by family members & a variety of very creative teachers. I love to travel & my influences are many & varied. Any questions? Feel free to ask. I’d love to hear from you!”




” I started making Duct Tape purses about ten years ago. My friend was sitting in her apartment, bored and in absentmindedly glancing around the apartment (as one does when they are bored) her eyes came to rest on her boyfriends wallet and a roll of duct tape. Due to her current state of boredom she proceeded to cover the wallet in duct tape. Oh, but she didn’t stop there. She covered her purse in purple duct tape and then mine as well. She had succeeded in providing herself with entertainment for the day and succeeded in providing me with the idea that I am currently producing. I thought; “Why cover something? Why not just make it from duct tape all together?”. And so I did.  I enjoy providing outstanding pieces of duct tape fashions. It is always a joy to have someone come up to me and ask me about my purse. When I tell them it is made from duct tape and they are completely blown away, well, it gives me an extra skip in my step. I like taking something that isn’t beautiful and making it beautiful. Thereby showing everyone that there is beauty in everything. You just have to know how to see it.  I do all things made from Duct Tape with some fabric, vintage jewelry, vintage ribbon etc. used in the mix.  I make Purses, Totes, clutches, journals, folders, pens, roses, wallets, change purses, messenger bags, etc… i make things for the boys and the girls!”




“I saw a flyer for a silver art clay class and thought it would be fun, I loved it.  I wanted to add  beads to one of my metal art clay pieces so I took a class in beading. I just kept taking more classes, wire wrapping, pearl knotting, chain maille, and fused glass, lapidary, metalsmithing. I took a few more silver art clay classes &  I decided to become a certified instructor in silver art clay.  I am always taking some kind of class, I love learning. I made a studio in my home and spend all my free time creating something, learning new ways and new things to create.  I also love the beach, fossil hunting, rockhounding and reading.”




“”Choose a job you love and you will never work a day in your life.” – Confucius said it and I believe it.   For me, graphic and web design is that left brain, right brain, exhilarating combination of logic and creativity “job” that keeps me on The Sunny Side.   I can spend hours playing around on Photoshop and am really enjoying making banners and avatars. There are a zillion image files on this computer that I’ve created over the last 5 years.  Plenty of new listings coming.  You do not have to fully understand the internet to take advantage of all the opportunities out there.  You just need someone you can trust.   If you need a banner, avatar, website, a redesign or someone to update an existing site, I would love the opportunity to help you make it happen.   Virtually yours, Trish Cox  The Sunny Side Dot Biz, LLC”




“Welcome to my collection of patterns and handmade items.

I welcome comments and suggestions about what you see, I’m not too old to learn new things.  I love to create and make things from scratch.

Please feel free to ask for more pictures of items.”




“I’m an Army Brat who was born in France to a U.S. Dad and French Mom.  I grew up in Europe and Turkey and was lucky enough to have traveled all over the world. I still love the traveling and seeing the fashions and styles of other countries … which I love incorporating into my “style”.”




“I have a large collection of silver beads, gemstones, some crystals and cabochons. New items added every day. My goal is to provide buyers with unique quality beading supplies and sell them in smaller quantities. I am also a jewelry artist specializing in unique handmade jewelry in a variety of styles and colors.”




“The name of the store (forget me knot treasure) is in honor of my late companion, friend and pet. I originally opened my business as Forget Me Knot Pet Sitting. I closed my pet sitting business and converted it to a home business when my fur friend started to get sick. He was with me for 15 1/2 years. He was truly my treasure and I will not forget him. I’ve been into sewing, arts & crafts since I could remember. I started my own business making custom gowns, children wear, clothing, house wares, accessories, jewelry, basically anything that caught my interest. I love mixing art mediums and fabric textures. All of my products are custom made. My workroom is a clean & smoke free environment.”