Did you know today is the winter solstice? The shortest day of the year. The word "solstice" is Latin for "sun stand still" The bright side? From this point on (until June) the days will progressively grow longer. Whoa, what a relief to anyone feeling a little light deprived this time of year!
Going out today & WOW- later than ever our Holiday card. (yikes is anybody else behind on this?) I painted these mittens in my sketch book & like how simple they were. I added a little text & done. (late but done) Next it's on to Christmas shopping which I haven't started yet. I need a quick Holiday infusion to get me in high gear! Maybe a peppermint latte some fruitcake & caroling?
Brrrr... it's cold outside. It took a while this year so I'm trying to remember that. If I had wings I would definitely join the birds & fly south for a while. Happy Friday! (and stay warm*) Art is cut paper collage with some paint & stamps.
Be Jolly & check out my gift bag at Papyrus stores. (sold in JUMBO, large & medium) I worked on this last year & it's fun to see it out in the market. The red background is completely flocked giving the bag a great cozy feel. If you're not familiar with Papyrus take a look at their site. They have lots of fun art on their products- ENJOY!
We have a lot to be thankful this year. And in the spirit of sharing we would like to offer to all our friends a 20% off discount coupon at our Etsy store. The coupon will be valid through December 31st. This is so exciting, I Love coupons!
We've enjoyed a warmer than usual November. I love this delay of the winters cold air! Last Saturday I even saw a ladybug while raking leaves. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for a warm Thanksgiving day. Nothing better than a big walk after I eat too much!
Last night I painted our Thanksgiving invitation. We've hosted the big meal at our house the past 5 years. Antonio LOVES to cook (& I love that he does:) I'm really looking forward to the event this year. I've been gathering place setting ideas, planing the menu & can't want to spend the day with all the people I'm so GRATEFUL for! Hope you're looking forward to the holiday too!
Today I received this enticing holiday ad for Anthropologie. I have always loved their aesthetic & celebration of the uncommon. Once you're in their site if you scroll over each image a simple & charming illustration begins. Hope you enjoy this as much as I did. *Just to throw this out into the universe I would LOVE to have some of my art in their store- someday :)
We had a two great features on some very nice blogs yesterday.
The first one was on trueup.net They did a feature on "What a world" my first fabric collection with P & B Textiles. The article shows a lot of pictures of the booth where the fabric collection was introduced at the Fall Quilt Market 2011.
The second was on child MODE. They did a very comprehensive review of the new Tada by Jill Mcdonald Etsy shop.
As you might noticed looking at the new blog layout. I'm the proud new owner of an Etsy store. I came up with “Tada by Jill McDonald”
I’m very excited to present a collection of Canvas Growth charts, Wall cards and Posters. This line is drenched in color, has fun themes, a sense of humor & a touch of education. This new step in my journey is a labor of love and represents 2 years of work to bring this products to the market. My goal with the Etsy store is to make art that kids & their parents will remember & love!
I hope you enjoy browsing through my Etsy store. And if you like, please tell your friends!
Also, as an introduction to my shop I'm offering your a 10% discount if they join our mailing list.
I can't believe Halloween is just a few days away. Like bats... time flies! I found this piece I made in 2009. It was a sketch for Halloween felt finger puppets. Perfect fun for little fingers this time of the year. Happy Friday!
We painted one wall in our kitchen with chalkboard paint. I think we are all enjoying it. We post or grocery list (no more loosing it). Luca loves to draw on it. His shapes are getting more complex & I like seeing what he's interested in drawing. (all those things in his little head) He never ceases to amaze me!
Hooray it's FRIDAY! Things have been moving fast around the studio. I'm hard at work with New JM crib bedding updates. My Jill McDonald Baby & Kids (stationary, albums, puzzles & more) will hit the market this January & I'm starting to work on new products for the summer launch. And on my free time I'm hard at work starting an Etsy shop.
Next week my first line of fabric What -a- World with P & B Textiles will debut at the International Quilt Market. Makes me a little tired & happy just thinking about it all. I don't want to portray the idea that all this stuff is easy. I've been hard at work for well... years now slowly making things happen. I often think that's the problem with blogs- it seems like *poof magically a designer or artist has conquered a market. But like all good things it takes hard work, putting yourself out there & specially perseverance. OK- now that that's over on to the fun stuff!
I've dreamed of having a fabric line for 5 years now. P & B textiles contacted me about a year ago & I was thrilled! My collection What -a- World keeps with my love of mixing art & touches of education. One of my fabrics is a giant world map packed full of fun facts & cultural icons, another is how to say "Hello" in over 15 languages. For another I illustrated a group of international kids. Each world kid can be cut out individually backed with another fabric & sewn together to make a doll. (This idea still makes me SO happy!-and they turned out really nicely) There is also a large panel print called "City Blocks" were in each square I explored a different city.
I hope to show more of this collection soon. For now here's a sneak peek.
I think this will be fun fabric for both parents & kids- Enjoy!
It's the big question this time of year. When they're babies it's easy- you decide. When they get a little older they decide & then change their mind about 5 times. Either way it's fun! Have you started thinking about a fun or fancy Halloween costume? Do share...
I've never been particularly close to too many people. I'm shy, maybe too focused on work & have never really been that social (it can be painful for me) My best friend Gigi who has lived a little bit of everywhere the last 7 years is moving 3 blocks away. This is a strange universe moment for me, but I couldn't be happier about it. She made this beautiful little box for me a couple years ago. Now that she'll be close by we are planning on a Monday craft night, Thursday evenings we'll watch our favorite shows. Sundays Antonio (who loves to cook) is planning on preparing big family style dinners. I think we're all excited. She's is the sister I never had, Antonio's chicken wing partner & Luca's Aunt Gigi. She helps me remember I am not an island. You really do need people in your life. (especially crazy, fun ones like her!)
Go! Jumping head first into Tuesday! Lots to do. Thought I would start the day off with some fun art. I've been grouchy lately but woke up feeling excited & ready to go. Hooray for that! Here's to a great Tuesday.
I received some exciting news this morning. "Over in the Meadow" won the National Parenting Publications Honor Award in the Children's media/ music category. Hooray for good news! If you haven't seen the book you can check it out HERE
I painted this fall piece while I watched the Emmys last night. I've noticed that lately I'm starting to get ready for the colder weather. Flannel sheets on the beds, just bought our first gallon of apple cider, taking the winter clothes out of the spare closet & picking the last zinnias in the garden. (I know it won't be long..) Cold weather is not my favorite but I decided this year I'll make an effort to prepare. What do you do to fall into autumn?
About a month ago Luca went back to school. Today was picture day! I love seeing all the kids spiffed up for their individual photo. Getting him ready this morning was a challenge. (he wanted to know why he needed so many layers, why don't I like wrinkles, why he had to slick his hair back, why we needed to spend so much time brushing his teeth, why we use chapstick- so many whys?!) Capturing how cute & innocent he is now is well worth the effort. Hooray for picture day! (until junior high & high school, then Picture Day becomes something embarassing)
I really like paint chips. I have several large zip lock bags full of them. I use them to get a quick visual grouping of a color palette. Each trip to the hardware store I grab a handfull. Sometimes I pick colors that I'm feeling that day, other times I base my selection of the names that amuse me or seem poetic. Either way it's fun (and free) Although my son will ask "mommy are you suppose to take all those?" So what to do with all these paint chips??? I did a bit of research & came up with some surprising results. Who new you could do so much with the almighty paint chip!
I've been tired lately. We all get pulled in so many different directions. Some days I wonder what do I like... What makes me happy? Of coarse making art does & I'm lucky I get to do that. Other little things also make me tick. I love chubby little baby arms/ hands in bracelets, the smell of lilies, watching the sky turn all grey & then hearing the first few giant drops of rain. This list goes on & on. Each year that goes by I realize more & more that it's all about the little things.
I was excited when I received this month Mini Boden catalog. The cover is an assortment of all sorts of little treasures. My desks has tins & baskets full of buttons, trinkets & other odds & ends that make me happy. Before a stressful phone call, in a moment that I need a little pick me up. I'll put on a spritz of my favorite lilac perfume, I'll apply a bit of my favorite lipstick, or put a pretty button in my hand & feel it get warm. I have match books, wrappers, photos of the people I love. Little moments that brought something to me. I keep them close by- it helps. My desk is full of treasures.
I'm ready to enjoy a weekend of fun & family. After a busy summer & not much free time I'm ready to run barefoot through the grass, fire up the grill, & take one last dip in the pool. Must hurry before it's too late! Hope you & yours have a wonderful Labor Day Weekend!
I look forward to each change of season. It helps rev up my creativity. So as the shadows grow bigger & the day light gets a little shorter I'm planning what will keep me busy this winter. We have several projects I'm really looking forward too. Each of which takes lots of thought & careful planning. Learning Illustrator is still at the top of my list. I'm getting better & have set aside a couple weeks to Just do it (thank you nike) I found this floral in my print achieve & quickly adjusted the color to feel early fall. Sometimes a simple exercise like this makes me happy! (hmmm- maybe I'm procrastinating)
This saying has always made me smile. Luca has started saying it. He just turned four & really has no idea what it means. He has caught on that this is a phrase you say with some authority. I have plans to post this sign on the outside of his door. Somedays, this is unfortunately fairly appropriate. He does have a way of running our life. (think this may apply to kids in general:)
A few month ago I had the pleasure of doing a couple of beautiful books called "The Super, Incredible Big Brother" and "The Super, Incredible Big Sister". The books help the older children with the change that it is introducing a new, younger sibling to the family. Just click the links to see a virtual tour of the whole book and how the personalization for each book works.
The good news for you is that from today to the end of August "I See Me!" is having a special 20% discount on both books. Just Enter coupon code INCREDIBLE at check out at www.iseeme.com
Also, we will have a giveaway of one personalized Big Sister or Big Brother Book. All you have to do is Like us in our Facebook page or if you already do just enter your name on the "comments" section of this post in Facebook