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February 10 2012

14:00

February 03 2012

16:02

The Color of Love Through the Artistic Eye

Love is most often associated with the color red. Be that by conditioning of incessant advertising or that we are drawn to it by nature. Secondary to red is of course pink, in almost any level of saturation.

Red is one of those colors that possesses the strongest Ying and Yang of its theoretical definitions. Between love and hate, rebirth and death, the human relationship in any combination, could literally be summed up in the meaning of the color Red. Pink has what I would describe as a temperamental scale, more based on softness versus loudness than the extreme left or right end of the spectrum.

"Red is the color of fire and blood, so it is associated with energy, war, danger, strength, power, determination as well as passion, desire, and love." - paper-leaf.com // COLOR THEORY poster freebie

As we know, colors can generate a wide variety of emotions. Red might be the most diverse and along with pink, a tag-along little sister, many other colors in tow can lend a visual message of love a great big pop!

Falling in Love by Etsy artist,  DJEMBE & CANVAS

"Cranes represent longevity and grace. The flocks ascend our champagne symphony, where love is blessed upon those who simply believe." - posted by artist at the listing

The artist gave us a wonderfully light feeling with this palette and the birds adding further motion. I also like how the painting balances the realities of "love" with a little bit of darkness in the bottom right corner. What do you think of this palette and representation of falling in love?

Love Trees by Etsy artist, Patrick Law

This slightly abstract ensemble uses blues, lavenders and coral blend to articulate a center of warmth within the heart tree. This makes me feel warm, cozy and safe. What does it do for you?

The detail on this acrylic print is amazing. The tree's are textured and have an amazing visual feel to them.

 Long Distance Love by Etsy artist, PopHeartPress

This digital art gives off quite a pop with a wild color palette that is sure to get your blood pumping. A wonderful way to make a positive statement about a long distance love situation.

You Ctrl + Z Me (You Undo Me) by Etsy artist rawartletterpress

This red certainly screams for attention and a laugh. Clearly using red against white in a funky, fun way. Comes in both PC and Mac versions.

Language of Love by Etsy artist TheMemoryGallery

Red, black and white always seem to say, "sexy." A very elegant and formal piece with the word, "Love" in, you guessed it, red.

Soulmates by Etsy Artist, Ben Will

In this abstract expressionism piece, the artist depicts the two soul mates in red while surrounded by an abstract world of cooler colors with a touch of warmth within a vague heart shape in the center between the figures. I feel that it is plainly portraying red as the connection of love. How do you see this piece?

 Modern Love Art Print by Etsy Artist, finedaypress

Mundane colors and ordinary shapes (the circles) surround an off-red, almost burnt orange heart to show love can exist in the midst of everything else in life.

Love Runs Through by Etsy Artist, papercraftsbyk

This fantastically bright mixed media piece tells a story. I like the composition because it literally shows a display of dark muddle in the center and love coming out the other side (running paint). A great visual representation of love. What do you think of the color scheme?

Heart Leaf Love by Etsy Artist, BouleDeNeige

What kind of feeling of love does this palette represent? With cooler hues, does the natural, organic shape soften it up?

I Love You This Much by Etsy Artist, hairbrainedschemes

Here we are, ending with this fabulous lipstick, lovey-dovey, sexy red. I still think nothing says "passionately, deeply in love" like this hue of red.

In reviewing these other palettes and artwork that goes with them, I think of things that a relationship brings such as trust, feeling safe, making me laugh, best friend, that person who is my rock, appreciation, admiration, etc.... but I still come full circle to the richness of what true definitive love feels like in this rich hue of red.

What do you think?


palettes used in this post:

Falling_in_LoveLove_TreesLove_Will_Find_a_WayYou_Ctrl_Z_MeLanguage_of_LoveSoul_MatesModern_LoveLove_Runs_ThroughHeart_Leaf_LoveI_Love_You_This_Much
Color by COLOURlovers

January 06 2012

15:32

December 08 2011

01:19

The COLOURlovers Gift Guide, Plus Exclusive Discount & Giveaway

Some people are tough to shop for, but not to worry because the COLOURlovers gift guide has a little something for everyone. This guide is full of colorful ideas from our favorite stores as well as some wonderful DIY projects that are so darn easy to do for that person that deserves something special. Check out the gifts below, and if you want even more ideas, make sure to check out our curated Gift Guide on Pinterest. We have lots of goodies over there too. So here we go!

For The Cooks: For that aspring chef in your life here are a few things that will brighten up their kitchen and spirits as they spend their days making magic in the kitchen. The bowls are perfect for serving and a hand-held blender is great for the friend that makes mashed potatoes or protein shakes and doesn't want the hassle of all the clean up. If you want to go the extra mile, consider getting a recipe book and filling it with your favorite family recipes and collect favorite recipes from family and friends. These gifts are sure to be a hit for that lovely cook.

1. Bowls, 2. Recipe Book, 3. Blender, 4. Cutting Board, 5. Knives

For The Nesters: Finding a unique and colorful piece to brighten up the home is always a good route to go for the friend who just moved or the couple who just married. The perfect pieces can add a little hint of color in the right spots and will be a staple in their home for years to come. Made By Girl offers custom colorful prints so you can add a last name to be hung in the living room or a baby's name for the nursery. Either way this gift will be a thoughtful addition to any home.

1. Candle Holders, 2. Knot Pillow, 3. Lamp, 4. Custom Name Print

For The Men: Oh the men. Us ladies can all agree for shopping for men isn't the easiest of tasks. So here are a few colorful and unique items that will get them excited. Let's highlight "The Present" a brand new clock that takes a full year to complete. The purpose and thought behind this idea is very interesting and worth checking out. Other items include a Tattly box, filled with faux tattoos, and a Tokyo Flash watch. It is worth giving honorable mention to a gift that is just as awesome, but a little different. Quarterly.co offers unique packages curated and sent by top designers and influencers. If your guy wants a little inspiration, this is a great way to go.

1. Tattly Box, 2. "The Present" Clock  3. Quote Books 4. Tokyo Flash Watch  5. Crumpled Map

For the Crafter: For that creative person in your life, consider an easy DIY project that will make all the difference to them. Yarn Letters, Wall Art, or a DIY holiday ornament are great suggestions that will add something special to their collection of goodies. And the best part is, they will keep your gift for years to come and always remember where it came from.

1. DIY Letters 2. DIY Wall Art 3. Ornament, 4. DIY Dryer Balls

For the Gals: I chose a few great ideas for any girl, but of course the list could go on and on, couldn't it? Colourful headbands or some statement bangles will be well-received by that special gal in your life. Last but not least are a pair of sparkly shoe clips that she can add to any pair of shoes to give it that extra special something.

1. Headband, 2. Bracelets, 3. Bando Shoe Clips

The Tech Snob: Yeah, you know who I'm talking about. There's always that one person on your list who has to get anything techy the moment it becomes available. So what does someone like this always need? Something to organize, show off and/or protect their investments.

1. CableDrop Cord Clips 2. SHOWWX+ (iPhone, iPad, iPod) 3. Lemon Yellow Elephant March - iPad Sleeve 4. Kindle Fire Case

Who couldn't use a cable organizing system? They come in a variety of colors so go loud, muted or plain white for the extreme minimalist if need be. A simple, yet affordable gift or stocking stuffer.

Anyone in love with their iDevice would be amped to receive something to utilize it even further by enabling it to show off their photo gallery as a slideshow, movies and even streaming content. Lastly, Etsy is chock full of sleeves, cases and covers for almost any tech device at decent prices and many amazing colors and pattern schemes to choose from.

1. mugoplayer 2. case-mate DIY cases (done COLOURlovers style) 

Finally, if you're trying to find that super unique gift for the computer user and music lover on your list, check out a mugo player. These super funky designer dual MP3 & USB characters will be a fast favorite!

Mugo gave us an exclusive COLOURlovers 25% Discount Code to be used at checkout, good until December 31st, 2011.

The Mugo Discount - 25% OFF Code: MUGOLOVERS 

Every techy of course has one of the latest smartphones on the market, so spruce up their rig with your own handmade pattern or palette you designed on COLOURlovers with the case-mate DIY (image uploader). DIY cases available for: iPhone 4/4S, 3G/3GS, Samsung Galaxy S Vibrant, iPod Touch 4G and Blackberry Bold 9900. 

The Case-mate DIY Case Giveaway

Case-mate gave us one (1) code for a FREE DIY case!

How to earn this: Post in the comments what your most ideal colorful gift is for yourself. You may post more than one, but must at least be one or you will not be considered. Random selection will pick the winner. Contest ends: December 12th, 2011 at 11pm PST.


Creations used on case-mate DIY case examples:
*Easter_EggsOvercrowdingPower_FlowerVINTAGE_PETALS...Make_Us_All_RightFaking_A_Funk*

October 31 2011

19:30

Halloween Colors: Where Did They Come From?

Pumpkin orange and midnight black—the predominant colors of Halloween combine the Autumn season with darkness and scary entities.

(source)

But how did these colors really come to dominate this most unusual holiday? The truth is, when it comes to the question of the origin of the Halloween colors, it can be hard to separate the opinions from the facts.

Unbleached beeswax candles (source | source)

The most common opinion about where the colors originated is steeped in the rich history of the Celtics and the Druids, with the burning of unbleached beeswax candles (orange) and ceremonial caskets draped in a black cloth.

Feng Shui candles are said to help create peace in the center of your house (source)

Now, let’s step into the world of Feng Shui, where a balance of energy reigns supreme. Believers of Feng Shui feel that the colors of orange and black were chosen because they are on opposite sides of the energy spectrum: orange is warm, happy, lively, and brings to mind the bounty of the fall harvest, while black represents mystery, void, power and protection (source).

(leaves source)

The most obvious answer to this question is that the classic color of Autumn is orange, while black can be equated with the approaching darkness of winter.

spider glasses | felted toysnapkinsBunting 

And, if you want to get really extreme, some people claim that black and orange were the only colors left after Christmas took red and green, and Easter took all of the pastels.

Of course, Halloween colors are not just limited to orange and black, you will also see a lot of blood red, eerie green, ghostly white and deep purples. So, where do these colors come into play? Here is a plausible explanation.

Celtic wheel of the year (source)

Going back to the Celtic festival of Samhain in 700 B.C., it signified the end of the harvest and the approaching of winter, or the end of one year and the start of another. The Celts believed that ancestral spirits joined them on this day when the past and the present are about to cross paths, which is why it was also considered a “day of the dead.”(source)

goblin | bat necklace | brooch | Boo

All of the Halloween colors seem to implicate some kind of connection to death and dying. Red is a classic implication of blood, fire and demons, while green represents goblins, monsters, and zombies. Purple draws in a bit of the supernatural and mysticism, while white reflects ghosts, mummies and a full moon.

Stepping away from color for a moment, Halloween is also dominated by an abundance of Jack-o-lanterns and children out trick-or-treating. These traditions also have an interesting origin.

Stingy Jack (source)

Jack-o-lanterns trace back to the Irish myth of Stingy Jack who died and, finding himself rejected by both heaven and hell, was forced to roam the darkness seeking a resting place for his soul. Legend has it that he hollowed out a turnip and used it to carry a coal to light his way. This said, the first Jack-o-lanterns were carved in turnips, and only changed to pumpkins when the tradition was brought to America.

jack-o-lanterns (source)

Trick-or-treating came about during the Great Irish Potato Famine. On Halloween, peasants would beg for food from the wealthy. They played practical jokes on those that refused to give them something. So, to avoid being tricked, the wealthy gave out cookies, candies, and fruit. It is easy to see how this turned into modern-day trick-or-treating. (source)

bracelet | plastic mustaches / lips | zombie clips | toy

No matter what history tells us, the Halloween color palette we see today is warm, bright, fun, and sometimes a little spooky. Each color has a place in the holiday and can find a place in your life as well, whether you are wearing it, eating it, decorating with it, or simply reading about it. So, have a happy, safe and colorful Halloween!


header credit: purple bats
Happy_Halloween!


Halloween Colors

Trick_or_TreatOctobers_EndTrick_o_TreatPumpkin_Moon_IF23toxic_psychedelicHappy_Halloween!halloween_treatPumpkin_Moon_IF23Nuclear_HalloweenHALLOWEEN_SOCKShappy_halloween!Retail_Halloweenho_ho_ho-lloween!!This_is_HalloweenHalloweenspooky_stuff

Reposted byacupuncturenyc acupuncturenyc

October 26 2011

14:39

The Sentiment of Paper Dolls Past and Present

Paper dolls and their costumes provide a look at cultures from around the world. They give us a glimpse at what was worn by men and women through the centuries. Celebrities were turned into paper dolls, as were storybook characters. Its easy to find your favorite subject in paper doll form; from Little Fanny to the Bobbsey Twins and The Flintstones to political cartoons. The history of the paper doll is likely unknown by many, so today, we're going to take a trip back in time to unearth the history of what every child was once familiar with!

This article presented by the offset flyer printing company, Next Day Flyers. Printing flyers and so much more.

 

Our story begins in 1810 when S. & J. Fuller produced a small book. The moral story was accompanied by a series of hand colored little boys in various costumes that correspond with the story. They were somewhat unusual in that there was not a full body paper doll. Instead, there was a single head for the set of dolls that neatly fit in a v shaped horizontal slit on the back of each costume. Presumably one head was used to require the child to move the head from costume to costume as the story progressed. The book was titled The History & Adventures of Little Henry. It was the first in a series of similar books that became quite popular. The second book, also published in 1810 was History of Little Fanny. (source)

(source)

(source)

The paper doll was even used in a Political cartoon from August 15th, 1925. The ad, originally in black and white, was restored and colored by Judy M. Johnson of Paper Goodies.

1925 source

This ad encourages its readers to "see just how she uses three of the Cutex "smoky" shades by cutting out the figures above" and goes on to talk about the 12 "smart shades" that are available for only 35¢. Yes, you read that right, just 35¢ in 1936!

1936 source

When paper dolls surged in popularity as toys, manufacturers of all kinds of household goods took advantage of their popularity by using them to promote their wares. Paper dolls appeared in advertising, some die-cut, some as cards to cut out. A few of the products advertised with paper dolls were Lyon's coffee, Pillsbury flour, Baker's chocolate, Singer sewing machines, Clark's threads, McLaughlin coffee and Hood's Sarsaparilla. These dolls were plentiful and are still fairly easy to find today, often pasted into colorful scrapbooks. Later, from the 1930s to the 1950s, companies put paper dolls into their magazine advertisements to sell such goods as nail polish, underwear, Springmaid fabrics, Quadriga Cloth, Ford Cars, Fels Naphtha and Swan soaps, Carter's clothing for children, and more. (source)

1950 source

The 1930s through the 1950s can perhaps claim the title "Golden Age of Paper Dolls," as their popularity during those years has never been equaled. Barbie may be credited or condemned for the decline in popularity of paper dolls in the 1960s. Paper-doll versions of Barbie and her sister, Skipper, were strong sellers in the 1970s. Boyfriend Ken and girlfriend Midge were also made as paper dolls. Paper Barbies appeared in books and in boxed sets from 1962 through the 1990s, and have dwindled to nearly nothing in the first years of the 21st Century.

Paper Dolls Today

VaVa farmed paper dolls from her childhood.

(source/source)

Zevi likes to recreate paper dolls using fabric. This one in particular is Dolly Dingle.

(source)

Vintage_Paper_Dolls

(source)

A playful portrait of yourself, your pets or your family. You provide the photos and choose the clothes, and they illustrate a quirky stylized moveable likeness of your favorite animal/person.

(source)

 This gorgeous oversized postcard has all you need to dress Miss Clara up in her favourite winter outfits.

(source)

Imogen is approximately 7 inches tall (18cm) and is printed on heavy weight matte card stock. She comes with quite a wardrobe as well! Summer outfits, winter attire, beachwear and sleepwear. 8 outfits in all, plus coordinating accessories.

(source)

These lovely paper dolls are printed on heavy-duty water-resistant magnetic paper. These magnets preserve the detail of the original watercolors. They will stick to any metal surface: fridge, file cabinet, or anything else in your nest that needs feathering.

(source)

I love these Betsy McCall Halloween paper dolls from 1953.

(source)

It is possible to unearth paper dolls from the past. Looking in books and through loose pieces of paper is a great way to start. There are paper doll conventions held throughout the year if you're hoping to find antique paper dolls from their early debut. Creating your own paper dolls can be really fun, especially for kids! It allows you to personalize your dolls clothes, hair, facial features etc. The possibilities are endless!

Header credit.

September 29 2011

23:40

August 05 2011

18:21

Lover Feature: Designer, Shawna Crouch aka "sec9586"

Some of you may already know our own sec9586, some of you may have just heard of her as the designer of the Betabrand plaid pattern, "Betabrand2" in our contest, "Color a Plaid Shirt Contest by Betabrand + COLOURlovers". Either way, we're featuring her today so you can get to know her even better!

Shawna Crouch, aka "sec9586", is the owner / operator of CrouchDesign. She attended Murray State University, where she graduated with a BS in Studio Art/Graphic Design in 2009, and specializes primarily in print design. Along with her designing day job, she runs a small shop on Zazzle as CrouchDesign, where she offers freelance design services. She also has an Etsy shop,  AquaNetNightmare, set to reopen September 1st, 2011 which will offer jewelry, cards, invitations, stationary and drawings.


Monster11Monster3TeenyBop
Shawna continually uses COLOURlovers in every which way for both work and fun. Let's take a peek at how she does it...

Using COLOURlovers in Daily Design

COLOURlovers: How do you specifically use COLOURlovers.com tools to work with a client in getting a perfect color palette?

Shawna: The first thing I do is to ask them what type of look they are going for. In doing so, I sometimes ask them what their favorite restaurant or hotel is, which can sometimes help show me an example of the style they like. After a preliminary discussion of their style, I direct them to COLOURlovers.com and ask them to choose three color palettes they’d like me to work with. From that point, I can design a pattern in Seamless, work on the mock-up and work with them to get a design that they were imagining.


Sunday_Persimmon
COLOURlovers: How exactly do you get clients to send you palettes to use?

Shawna: Usually I have clients email me links to the palettes, OR I have them download the AI or ASE swatch files (to email me) - depending on which is easier for them. Everytime that I have had them do this, it has gone very smoothly. Usually only issue being that they send more than three palettes because there are just so many wonderful color combinations to choose from. Then we get to play the elimination game, which can be a daunting task in itself!

COLOURlovers: What COLOURlovers tools do you use specifically, and how?

Shawna: When I use COLOURlovers.com, I almost always use COPASO to create my palettes. COPASO allows you to make palettes with custom widths, but I mainly use it for the simple fact that I can use photos to pick colors from and use a scratch area to keep all my ideas organized.

Since I've just gotten the COLOURlovers iPhone App, ColorSchemer, I'm really looking forward to utilizing it in every day work. Being able to access and creating palettes on the fly will be an amazing tool. I imagine having a client sitting right with me saying, “Hmm, I need to see some color options for our company’s new look”. All I'll have to do is pull up the app and create the palette on the spot! It will definitely speed up this part of the process.

COLOURlovers: I know you've also recently got a copy of Seamless Studio. Do you use patterns a lot in your work already? If so, how will having a copy of SS on your desktop help out?

Shawna: I do try to use patterns in my work, because they can add subtle qualities that make a design much more interesting. Using the website is awesome because I can tailor the pattern templates to my needs, and then color several very quickly. It’s also exciting to find hidden gems among other users that create amazing templates.

Cleanest_BathroomDiner

Seamless Studio expands the limitations of making the templates in so many new directions. I have a lot more control over what shapes are in the pattern and better yet, getting the colors exactly how I like them for the big picture.


Lovely_BirdsBird_Ornate
Being able to create organic shapes makes it so much more fulfilling to use the software and website to my full potential as a designer.

Pearly_GateBeadedCurtains


Shawna's current Fav's

Love_NotesQuotaPeachesMintCreamBerry_Delishwhats_next...retro_circuslet_them_eat_cakeAF


I find it fascinating to see how our community uses COLOURlovers for both work and play and We have so many unique freelancers and small business owners. I'll be on the lookout for more Lovers to showcase here on the blog.

So how do you use COLOURlovers?

 


header design credits:
Betabrand2*L_A_B_E_L*Origami

May 11 2011

18:54

Small Business Model - Etsy PDF to Print: Featuring Dolls and Daydreams

Etsy.com allows people to sell in many different ways. An excellent business model is selling your creations as PDF Patterns instead of the actual item itself. It requires almost no overhead so to speak since you are selling a digital file for the end-buyer to print themselves. It allows you, the seller, more creative time by simply selling the method rather than trying to keep up with demanding orders.

Featured Etsy seller, English artist Sarah Hanson of Dolls & Daydreams, does just that. She does it very well in fact by showcasing a few different finished products as eye-candy for each pattern. Versions of these creations shown in the store are merely examples of how cute these plushes can look, but the fabric choices are up to you, so you can make these projects look any way you want. Each purchase comes packed with a PDF pattern and instructions on how to create it. Sarah also provides some extra bonus links and advice for sewing dolls, along with your purchase.

The_Owls

Opening More Doors for Cashflow

Sarah's business model not only sell's cute doll patterns, but also provides a way to dress these dolls up with upselling. A very smart move and works beautifully for her shop. As soon as you see these guys in their outfits you can't help but want to also accessorize!

Sell the Idea - Make it Tactfully Visual

These doll's aren't anything small either at 18.5" tall! Sarah does an excellent job showcasing her product. She doesn't just provide a single image of one doll, with a note that it's a pattern. She showcases a great picture of the main product - the Owls three in a row, sitting and standing. Then an up sell image of the owl's dressed in clothing - sold separately - and finally a representation of size by having a child in the picture holding one. I couldn't wrap my head around what this 18.5 inch doll might actually represented until I saw the image of the child.

Recapping this selling structure:

- Include nice, clear, un-grainy pictures. Sarah does a simple white background (a piece of posterboard can work). Colorful items are best shown on a simple background.

-Include a variety of inspirational looks. Sarah does this with many different fabric variations of the Owls.

-Include visuals to how big the item is: a quilt - show it on a bed, a doll - show it in your hands or a child's (try to represent it in real life, not against a ruler), an outfit - show it on a real body, etc.

-Finally, if there is a way to accessorize your item show it, but make sure to note that the PDF does not come with such and such items, but you can [link] get them here.

More Upselling

Etsy sellers create many types of products, not only in the sewing or PDF world. A couple of different scenario's to add upselling to your product pages would be:

Jewelry - Selling a necklace? Show an image with a ring and earrings that match....note links to those products...run a special to buy all three, etc.

Sewing Patterns or Clothing and Accessories - we've covered a lot about the patterns as the main topic in this post, but putting doll's aside, things like clothing could include accessories such as a purse, belt or other clothing accessory that might go.

Lastly, don't be afraid to start networking with other sellers to create a cross-combo upsell. Wow, does that sound complicated? It's easy, if you make dresses and skirts and have no interest in making purses, connect with a fellow seller and work out an agreement. If you only make necklaces, connect with someone doing more:

-Simple Exposure Trade - each of you post a product and link in another product page for upselling to the other user.

-Commission - Instruct buyers to mention a code in the special instructions field at checkout for the item on the other sellers product to get some sort of benefit (%/$ off next order, etc). Basically create a way to track that they bought from both of you.

The_foxes

Overall, the PDF to Print business model is an excellent way to keep loving your craft, broaden your market and have more time ultimately for creating new products for your line. A would almost guarantee that selling a pattern over the actual dolls will gross ten times more. Opening your pattern license up to allow others to sell the finished products provides even more of a draw.

As an Etsy buyer and crafter myself, I would much rather spend $10 on a pattern than spend $25+ on a single doll. Remember, Etsy is a creative community. Most of the users who sell on Etsy most likely buy on Etsy - and those people like to create.

 

My_doll

One look at the patterns in the Dolls & Daydreams store, and you can easily imagine yourself spending a long and lazy Sunday with your sewing kit out, creating these precious little plushes.

Handmade plushes always give me a rush of delight. As a person who loves craft and collectibles, there's something about owning an item that has been created by hand that feels better than purchasing a mass manufactured item. It's a similar feeling to receive a gift that's been made by hand.


You can find Sarah / Dolls and Daydreams on Facebook and check out her blog for lots of information and cool things she's working on.

links to products shown: Owl | Fox | Girl

All images copyright Sarah Hanson of Dolls & Daydreams.



This post was written in collaboration with both Colette Bennette & Molly Bermea

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