Neighborhood Nature

I am not feeling well today so there are no coherent words to write.


Instead, I give you some nature photos from recent walks.


You can find lots of beauty in your neighborhood.


This sign at the Bristol Renaissance Faire made me chuckle (and a lavender bath is on the schedule).


I love this flaming flower in a local median.

purple flame

Bees are a good sign.


Monarchs need your help.


Have a great week!


Artsy Weekend Fun

It’s a weekend of artistic activities! On Saturday and Sunday The Collage Cafe is hosting its true grand opening.


On September 26th & 27th  from 11 am – 5pm you can peruse this lovely boutique while being treated to surprises and door prizes, refreshments and discounts. Lindy will show some fun and fast make and take projects, and you can sign up for future workshops.


A few of my bangles are having a sleepover there, and The Collage Cafe also has my Curly Girl Design pendant on hand, among others.


Check out the events page for upcoming fun workshops. Regular hours are Tuesday through Friday from 12 – 6, Saturday and Sunday 12 – 4, and by appointment on select Mondays. The Collage Cafe is located near Main and Sherman at 912 Sherman Avenue, Evanston IL 60202


On Sunday I will be in Highland Park at Ayla’s Bead Bazaar trying to stay in my booth while being surrounded by sparklies.


Monday evening you will find me at Creative Coworking to mingle with One State Together participants. Creative Coworking is part of a bus tour showcasing Evanston’s small businesses and developments that have made a special place for art, performance, and placemaking in their growth, prioritizing collaboration over pure competition.


The biennial One State Together in the Arts conference takes place September 28 and 29 in Evanston. More than 300 artists, arts managers, and arts supporters will come together to collaborate to ensure that the arts are leading the way toward a more equitable, unified, and livable society.


Co-convened by Arts Alliance Illinois and the Illinois Arts Council Agency, One State is the only statewide, multidisciplinary conference for arts leaders and practitioners in Illinois. It’s pretty cool to live in such a fun, vibrant and inspiring creative community.

Bead Bazaar on Sunday

It’s back to back art fair time! On Sunday, September 27, I will be setting up shop in the Highland Art Park Center, where Ayla’s Originals is hosting its Fall Bead Bazaar.


I’ve perused Ayla’s Wonderful World of Beads on numerous occasions and am thrilled to be part of the vendor line-up this year.


Seventeen vendors bring their best beading merchandise for your perusal, including: Ayla’s Originals, Dakota Stones, Elka Designs, Hobo Glass, Kina Denton, Maike’s Marvels, Cynthia McEwen Design, Medusa’s Stones, Midwest Maille, Mostly Buttons, Karen Ovington, Reith Collection, String a Strand on Wells, Diane Tarullo and Two Charming Chix.


You can browse handmade beads, discounted gemstones, vintage charms and adornments, strands of craft beads, pre-made jewelry, and jewelry tools.

Cynthia McEwen

Come see what I created with last year’s loot from 10am – 4pm on Sunday, September 27 at The Art Center, 1957 Sheridan Rd., Highland Park. Parking is free and the Metra station is Highland Park.


The Art Center is hosting Pastel Painters 2015, a group exhibition of imagery predominantly produced in the medium of pastel, created by the most elite pastel painters from across the country. Download the discount coupon here for $1 off the $4 entry fee.


I know some of you locals have been eye-ing my bangles, and this is your chance to select your very own beads. I will give you a $5 discount on your custom order at the fair when you by a strand of beads at the bazaar.


I picked up some of Elka Designs’ strands at her recent trunk show in Ayla’s Evanston store, and will be finishing some bangles based on Elka’s suggestions before Sunday.


I’m curious how this one will turn out. Get a sneak peek of my beaded jewelry on Etsy.


The Art Center – Highland Park is a community-based organization whose goal is to ensure access to the arts for all ages and cultural interests. A not-for-profit visual arts organization, The Art Center (TAC) provides an arts education to Highland Park and surrounding areas as a thriving Arts Education and Exhibition Center, as well as a hub for culture and community.

Creations for Dutchies

I went on a family reunion trip during which I finally got to show my wares in person to my family.


One person fell in love with the purple coral bangle I had made, but wanted it in blue so I found a strand of lapis chips at Dave’s Down to Earth Rock Shop.


It was fun to make the bangle and earrings, though I might need a new mandrel for spiraling…


The result was well-received.


A linguistics discussion referenced a tape measure as a ‘roll of inches’ and I like that analogy to my rolls of steel wire.


I also incorporated a Michael Jackson favorite into a gift. Lining up the 2 sides of music score and lyrics took a few attempts.


I like this pendant a lot, and hope it gets a lot of wear in the Netherlands.


An attempt to take birthstone bangle measurements abroad went awry, with the 14 cm resembling a collar rather than a bracelet.


So I packed up the toolkit and supplies and decided to bring my work on my vacation.


It was fun to take a morning just to play with beads amidst all the touring and eating and visiting.


There is already an addition on the way for this bangle, so I will have to add a new birthstone bead when I return.


In addition to the custom pieces, these lovelies went on to new homes.


The Dutch vibe continued at home with this delft blue bead set.


What do you think of this simple earring design, should there be more of these?


Come see my other bangle and earring pairings at the Ravenswood ArtWalk this weekend, or visit Ayla’s Bead Bazaar in Highland Park next weekend!


Esty is open when I am not vending in person.

Ravenswood ArtWalk lineup for this weekend

Guess what? After two years of struggling through weather issues, I secured an indoor spot at the Ravenswood ArtWalk this year. The event has also moved to mid-September instead of the fall-ish October weekend.


On Saturday September 19 and Sunday September 20, the businesses, studios and shops along Ravenswood Avenue will open their doors from 11 am to 6 pm for a showcase of artists and industry. There will be open studios, craft beer, live music and family fun.


I will be at Platform Coworking – 4422 N Ravenswood alongside Erin Wesseli Rossi, Flora Calabrese, Gwyndolyn Siebert and Tony Nuccio.


This is #5 on the official map, conveniently located near the CTA’s Montrose stop near the corner of Montrose and Ravenswood.


We are just around the corner of LillStreet Art center.


Just follow Montrose under the Metra bridge and turn right (north).


Other venues and artists include: Beyond Design – 4515 N Ravenswood featuring: Alison Bixby, Ann Cohen, Bob London, Dail Kirkpatrick, Dan Schreck, Jan Olson, Janeane Bowlware, Melinda Gordon, Nuria McNeal, Robert McCollam and William Carroll. Hayes Properties – 4043 N Ravenswood will host: Debbie Lessin, Grace Gaynor, Kevin Lemel, Kim Laurel, Ladetria Warren, Laura Matzen, Lee Galusha, Luka Dziubyna, Marilyn Grad, Mariyam Jawed, Maureen Crowley, Nancy Cusick and Thomas Dubois. Movement Republic – 4526 N Ravenswood will host Tracy Poyser. Savvy Seconds & 1sts – 1748 W Lawrence will feature: Katy Higgins, Michelle Graves, Peyton Rack and Scott Holsterhaus. Urban Pooch – 4501 N Ravenswood is hosting Dinah Miller.


The brave souls vending at the outdoor market at Ravenswood & Berteau include: Alexandra Jamroz, Alicia Londos, Amanda Joyner, Amy Tatsui, Andrew Christen, Barbara Grunewald, Cara Miller, Christina Caruso, Elektra Musich, Frances & Camilla Krueger-Jackson & Krueger, Gayle Weiss, Hilary Black, Hillary Miles, Jaque Mannakee, Jeneba Koroma, Jessica DeBoer, Joseph Mills, Kate Heilman, Kate Zitzer, Khabrim Diallo, Kim Amati, Laura Garza, Lisa Richards, Lori Hess, Marina Veiler, Monica Zanetti, Pablo Ramirez, Rita Sindelar, Robin Nathan, Roslyn Broder, Rossana Reformado, Russell Muits, Sean Gallagher, Scott Kiefer, Scott Vanderlin, Steve Connell, Tanya Milojkovic and Tuesday Webb.


Music performances include: Zigtebra, Axons,  Dan Rico, Jeremy David Miller, Female Basic, Ursa Ensemble and Jonathan Hannau.


So come on out and enjoy a plethora of art in a variety of locations along Ravenswood Avenue. Over 14 years, RAW has grown into what it is today; an dynamic celebration of arts and industry that features 300+ artists and 40 sites, while placing special focus on the diverse talents of the Ravenswood Corridor. Use the hashtag “#RAW2015” and tag @RAWchicago  when you stroll the event!


Spam and grasshopper friends

It was a scorching day on Saturday, but light breezes and the occasional cloud blocking the sun made the day lovely for an art fair.


It was early when I set out to bring my wares to Bloomingdale.


As always, Platt Hill Nursery has a plethora of fun and quirky garden accessories to peruse.


The rainbow of watering cans cheered me up.


The professional and cheerful staff directed us where we needed to set up.


Soon my table was transformed.


This year’s vendors sold jewelry, children’s clothes, stuffed animals, fun hand-crafted decorative items,


gifts, household items, garden decor, and holiday ornaments.


These golf ball critters were fun to peruse.


Garden stakes are such fun, if you have a garden…


I didn’t have much time to peruse the tents, but they looked like fun.


It was fun to try out my souvenir from the home country.


Spam the pig visited again and was loved by many.


Butterflies and bumblebees fluttered by, and this grasshopper jumped into my path.


I thought it would jump the minute after I snapped the photo, which it did, right on to my table!


Then it explored for a bit and even picked out a pendant to go with its outfit.


I had my annual hot dog and soft drink, but didn’t get around to sipping a Margarita this year.


Two customers bought a keychain and a butterfly pendant and a few business cards walked away.


It was fun to watch people parade their plant selections, and I was tempted to try my black thumb at a green orchid.


Soon it was closing time, though, and tear-down became more important.


If you’re a gardener, go check out Platt Hill Nursery in Bloomingdale or Carpentersville. They’ll have some fun Fall items in store for you.


My next pop-up event is the Ravenswood ArtWalk September 19 and 20. I hope to see you there.


Pampering at Avalon

It’s time for some pampering and fun! Join the Network of Entrepreneurial Women as we celebrate the last days of summer during our September Meet & Munch. We’ll be meeting in the gorgeously indulgent Avalon Salon & Day Spa. The event is on Wednesday, September 9 from 2:00pm – 4:00pm at 20530 N Rand Rd, Suite 346 in Deer Park.


Be motivated by other women entrepreneurs in a networking community that is open-minded, focused and friendly. Be reminded why you love being an entrepreneur as you hear other businesswomen’s stories about their own journeys, and make lifelong contacts while actually having some fun. This event will be particularly special to NEW, as we return to the location of our first event, Avalon Salon & Day Spa, where we had a blast last year.


Avalon is a 5,200 Square foot serene salon/spa that is open seven days a week and houses 50+ trained professionals. The team at Avalon Salon & Day Spa has been and always will be committed to offering each of their guests a comfortable, serene environment in which they can relax and indulge their senses in paradise. As an AVEDA salon, Avalon uses 93-97% organically derived products.


Avalon Spa has been named in the top 200 salons in Salon Today for the last 9 years. As an Aveda Salon, the spa participated in the Guinness Book of Records challenge of providing the most charity haircuts in 24 hours. Avalon Spa is located at the Deer Park Town Center which has ample parking available.


Mark your calendars for next month, when we will celebrate Crain’s Small Business Week with a dynamic Networking Luncheon featuring a keynote address by Barbara Joan Zeitz, followed by three Mastermind Roundtable sessions and optional chair massages.

NEW – The Network of Entrepreneurial Women is a group of Chicagoland business women who are upgrading business networking with fun and creative events that inspire attendees to work together, refer each other and most of all cheer each other on as the membership succeeds. Events rotate around various suburbs on a semimonthly basis, usually the 2nd Wednesday and 4th Thursday of the month. RSVP for our upcoming events at Meetup, or like us on Facebook and check up on the calendar there.

Summer Selfies

It’s time for some Summer Selfies as I process numerous photos from my August travels.


The Yellow Agate Set visited a few stores this quarter while the pink flower wax and wire pendant was admired during NEW’s recent Meet & Munch. I paired it with infinity earrings.


in May I wore various Mother’s Day Pendants to promote the lovely day. The peace-loving squiggledee adorned my seatbelt on an errand run. I sold a zigzag collar and had fun creating a new one. During NEW’s visit to the Heartwood Center I wore the Princess Coleopterist Ladybug pendant.

I’m freelancing again which had me suiting up a few times.


The black and white look called for the Isaiah 55:12 bible pendant that had me go out in joy. I paired it with spiral earrings. My coiled wire earrings were paired with various outfits throughout the summer. I wore the polka dot pendant inspired by Curly Girl Design’s shipment on another outing. The burgundy abstract pendant isn’t listed yet.


I enjoyed making the Delft blue pendants for my SAIL trip on King’s Day. The Morpho pendant is a favorite of mine. For the pride parade celebration I paired this rainbow pendant with flower earrings that sold. My chunky bead pendants are making their way on Etsy. You can order your own birthstone or chakra bangle anytime, or visit the Collage Cafe for ready-made items.

Come try these on at Saturday’s Platt-A-Polooza event in Bloomingdale.

Platt-A-Palooza this Saturday

This Saturday I will be surrounded by flowers and garden sculptures as I set up my shop at Bloomingdale’s Platt Hill Nursery.


Last year’s Platt-A-Palooza was a blast, and I hope to find new and returning admirers of my jewelry and mini-collages this year.


It was fun to browse the other tables and see all the household goods, ceramics, garden decorations and gifts made by local artisans.


Platt Hill Nursery offers all the tools and supplies you need for your garden, and has a plethora of fun decorative items as well.


Come on by to 222 W Lake Street, Bloomingdale, on September 5 between 9 am and 5 pm to take advantage of sales, delicious food, and creative fun.

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Additional sales happen throughout the weekend, but the artisans will only pop up on Saturday.