SLIDER

Hello!

My name is Erika. I'm in love with making art, collecting old things & chasing after my two kiddos. This blog is a peek into my happy accidents & plots of total world domination.

NEWSLETTER

Saturday, August 30, 2014

2014 Feast Portland!

Feast Portland is one of the best food festivals in the Pacific Northwest and it is right around the corner. Portland has such a great foodie scene and maybe I am slightly partial since I was born and raised here. It is a four-day festival that highlights fresh local ingredients while showcasing Pacific Northwest and internationally acclaimed chefs. The best thing about the event is that you can pick and choose what you want to attend, there is everything from a delicious dinner series to hands-on classes, so you can pick exactly what you want to go to. Sounds pretty great, doesn't it? Most of the tickets are already sold out but there are still a few left. Will I see you there?

Details and Links:
Dates: September 18th-21st
All of the Latest Feast News: Facebook // Instagram //Twitter
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Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Baby Style//Nesting

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I have the nesting fever and have been organizing and cleaning like a crazy person. Over the last few weeks, I have been going through all of the boxes of Nora's old baby's clothes. Being the hoarder that I am, I saved nearly everything. I'm pretty grateful that I did because now I don't really need a whole lot of  baby gear, but just a few fun things.

Going through Nora's old cloths has been pretty tough because it makes me think about when Nora was a baby.  So if course being 7 months pregnant, I was sitting folding onsies and crying, and just thinking about how my big girl is not so little anymore.  Nora then gives me a big hug and hands me her favorite teddy bear.  Even though a teddy bear fixes most things, it made me cry harder and think about how lucky I am.  It's amazing how something so simple such as clothes, can hold so many special moments. Now since I got a good cry out, I can focus on shopping and getting the baby's room ready.

I have found that there are so many cute little boy or gender neutral options that I just love.  Since my new baby is being born in the winter, I do have to make sure he has enough hats, gloves and shoes, right?

To see more of my baby nesting obsession, follow me on Pinterest.
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Monday, August 25, 2014

Underwater



One of my favorite things to do, is to make art based on my dreams, especially while pregnant. Dreams when you're pregnant tend to be a little on the strange side and more vivid.  I think it might  have something to do with the extra boost of hormones from the baby, but they sure are unusual. When I was pregnant with Nora, I had nothing but vampire and zombie dreams.

I had this dream I was swimming under water and I was surrounded by gold fish. I remember the goldfish were swimming around me and I would try to swat them away.  When I was able to hit one, they would keep swimming but turn sparkly and blinding.  The water was cool and I can still feel how it felt on my skin.

Making art based on dreams, it reminds me that I can make whatever type of art I want.  It can be good, it can be bad but it's more about the stream of consciousness. Sometimes I think I get so wrapped up in an idea or a project, that I forget about letting in room for the unexpected and letting accidents happen. Dreams are probably one of the most unexpected, since there is no control and it's letting go to your subconscious.  Letting accidents happen in your work is one of the best things about being a creative, don't you think?

PS This print is available in my etsy shop.
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Monday, August 18, 2014

Beach Days: Cannon Beach

The weather has been been so hot here, and to beat the heat, we decided to take a day trip to Cannon Beach.  It's only about an hour or so from our house, and the drive is just over a mountain. Cannon Beach is home to Hay Stack Rock.  It's that big rock in the ocean, it was even in the opening scene for the 80's cult classic The Goonies, which basically means it's famous.  I think what I love most about visiting the Oregon Coast is that it's like walking out of the woods and you emerge right next to the ocean.    

Nora loves the beach, specifically she the sand. She loves to roll around in it, scoop it, pat it, throw it, and of course eat it. This has been one of my favorite memories of the summer, just watching Tim and Nora play in the sand and water together.  Nora would sit in the sand and would say, "Daddy, Sit!" and pat the sand right next to her. I know pretty soon there will be 4 of us, and we will be making new special memories together but I am enjoying the moments of just us 3.  

Leaving the beach was tough, many tears were shed.  I still chuckle when Nora gets in a full tantrum because she is so emotionally involved and throws herself on the ground and refuses to budge. Well she did budge when I promised her an ice cream cone, but we did have some seafood first. yummy! 

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Monday, August 11, 2014

The Winnie


I have been thinking a lot about traveling. It's really odd because when I was pregnant with Nora, all I wanted to do, was stay with in a 5 mile radius of my house. (no joke) With this pregnancy, all I can think about is hopping on a plane or a car and just going some where.  

Having a 2nd kiddo is more than likely make me even more home bound, at least for a little while.   So for now, I can fantasize about taking a road trip. Hitting the highway next to the ocean and tasting the ocean spray.  Oh and the best part of any road trip is pulling over for snow cones and look out points, sounds amazing doesn't it?

This print is in my in my etsy shop. Happy Monday!
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Wednesday, August 6, 2014

My DIY Project From Hell. My Side Table Redo, Part 1.

I have been redoing furniture for such a lone time, like super long, since high school.  I love going to the local thrift store or an estate sale just find that hidden gem or that diamond in the rough. I think the best part of buying used furniture, is that you don't feel obligated to just keep it the way that it is, you can change it and make it into whatever you want.

My mother found this beautiful piece of vintage furniture on craigslist, for a great price and she knew I had been looking for a side table for awhile.  We talked about it and I really liked the bones of it, my only concern was that I wanted to make sure it was solid wood.  She went to look at and picked it up for me, and she still talks about how she scored such a great deal on it.

My plan for the side table was to strip the top, the drawers and the intricate wings and then do a stain to really highlight the wood. The rest of the body would be painted and I was leaning towards a bright bee yellow. I started stripping the wood, and something weird was happening, the chemicals for the wood stripper weren't reacting to the wood.  I used my putty knife and started scrapping away the stripper and it looked crazy.  I could see the wood turning this yellowish color, there was a layer of brown underneath that and then this reddish stuff on top of the wood.

Well, guess what? It's veneer wood.  Usually, I steer clear of veneer wood because its a thin coat of fancy looking wood on top of ugly wood, like wood wall paper. The biggest problem with redoing something that is wood veneer is removing the glue. If the piece of furniture was made in the last 50 years, the glue is extremely hard to remove. Even if you remove the wood veneer, there is still the glue to remove and you basically have to heat or wet it and try to scrap it off. Trying to remove the wood veneer and glue with out damaging the wood underneath is a horrible and painful project.  So after hours of cursing at the side table and trying to get the glue off.  I gave up. I was too far into the project to just say, ok strip it and paint it.  

I took a day off and stared at it, and evaluated the damage. There are so many holes, gashes from trying to remove the glue and the wood was totally discolored and not in good shape. The wood looked crazy and now my side table looked even crazier. I was so mad at myself for even starting the project.

I decided to fill in the holes with wood filler and primed it, white. I moved it back into my living room and am taking a break on what to do next. I need a break from this DIY gone wrong. I could always paint it white or multi-color, but I want it to be something I am going to love forever. 

Don't you just hate it, when a project goes wrong? It is the worst! I would love to hear your thoughts on what I should do next, its primed and ready for the next chapter.
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© Erika Lee Sears