Saturday, November 28, 2009

$20 and Under Gift Guide

Times are tough and the holidays are coming. Friends, family and co-workers all need to be bought for. What's an art lover to do? Browse the following gift guide to find great hand made items for a variety of folks. Designed with skill and handmade with pride, these gifts are all sure to strike the right cord with the right recipient.


Fingerless gloves, $15 by Jen-A-Fusion Fashion Accessories

Fun polar fleecey fingerless gloves keep you warm while you text, drive, walk the dog or go to the farmers market. Available in a range of colors and designs.

To see more, go to or visit Jen at any of her many December market days. Check at the schedule at left.

On The Go pouches, $15 by oblinaknit

Toss one in your tote and go - fill them with makeup, id, or even knitting notions ....the list is endless!

Find this and more at

Wire-wrapped Key Chains, $12 by Reinvented Elegance

Each key chain features a wide variety of wire-wrapped novelty beads, from dogs to chickens to mushrooms!

Joyce Wagner, of Reinvented Elegance, will be the featured December Artist of the Month, so there will be much more on her next week. For this week, you can find her at Santa’s Craft Show in Ellicott City, MD, November 28 and 29, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.


Holiday Portrait, $5 from Joanna Barnum Portraits & Illustration

On special until December 15, you get a 4" x 6" quick portrait sketch from your photo in graphite, ink, and marker on paper.

For more details about this special for ordering information:
There is also information in the post about larger portrait options.
Visit or to see a portfolio of other work available.


"FUKITOL" Box, $16 by BoxBoy Demented Decoupage

Wooden 3.5 x 2.25 x 2.25" Trinket Box ... BoxBoy's all-time best seller!

BoxBoy will be at Eastern Market on Sundays, Nov. 29, Dec. 6, 13, 20 and the Downtown Holiday Market, Dec. 4, 5, 10, 11, 12, 17, 18, 19. More boxes can be seen at or emailed to

Robots Decoupage Piggy Bank, $20, by This Little Piggy

Hand-decoupaged robot-themed ceramic piggy bank

Jessica sells little piggies online at & and at A Show of Hands in Alexandria (Del Ray) & PetMac in Arlington (Virginia Square). She will also be around town doing the craft show circuit!

Pressed Flower Greeting Cards with Coordinating Envelopes, $4 each or 3/$10 by Reinvented Elegance

Happily designed with local flowers and leaves; no two are alike!


Unique polymer clay pendants, Prices range $10-20, by Jennifer Judd Designs at Jen Judd Rocks!

These are handmade polymer clay pendants with one-of-a-kind patterns that'll work with just about any choker or chain you already have.

You can see more work at and you can shop for these pendants at

From The September Artist of the Month~Red Tape Earrings, $17.95 by Jenny's Pretty Things

These earrings are handmade with a piece of the original red twill tape once used to bind U.S. Government documents.

They are available online on the National Archives eStore.

Crocheted Earrings, $15 by Reinvented Elegance

Whimsical, lightweight, and a treat to wear; no two pairs are exactly alike … and, yes, they really are crocheted!

Black and Gold Felt Cut-Out Bracelet, $18 by ShesSoCrafty Art & Design, the August Artist of the Month

Hand cut black felt cutouts, hand sewn and blanket stitched with metallic gold threads.

Find this and much much more at


Jumbo Pressed Flower Magnets, $6 by Reinvented Elegance

Bring the beauty of nature indoors to bloom on any magnetized surface; outstanding stocking stuffers!

Potomac River Orbs, $10 by Reinvented Elegance

Created featuring recycled river glass and shells happily collected from the shores of the Potomac River; equally great as desk accessories or unique holiday ornaments.


Various Photos, including cards $4-15, by Love to Create

Greeting Cards - $4.00 each, 3 for $10.00 or 5 for $15.00
5x7 matted prints - 1 for $6, 3 for $15.00
8x10 matted prints - 1 for $10.00

Love to Create will be selling at the Del Ray Artisans Holiday Market, 2704 Mt. Vernon Ave, Alexandria, VA Friday, December 4, 7-10pm, Saturday, December 5, 10-7pm, Sunday, December 6, 12-4pm. For more images, check out

Thanks for taking a peak and supporting small business people and talented artist. Hope to see you at a show or two in the next month!~Jen

Friday, November 20, 2009

Mt. Vernon Unitarian Church Holiday Shop

Come for the whole day, for the whole family at the Mt. Vernon Unitarian Church Holiday Shop. For the 48th year, this happening encompasses baked goods, handmade crafts from well know regional artists, hot lunch to buy, fair trade items, a quilt raffle and more.

A beautiful drive down the George Washington Parkway and a cute little setting create a great day out!

What: Mt Vernon Unitarian Church Holiday Shop

When: Saturday, November 21 9:30-am-4pm

Where: 1909 Windmill Lane, Alexandria, VA


While driving there today to set up, yellow leaves sprinkled through the air and caught the light. They looked like glitter in the air. So beautiful! What a perfect idea to do some holiday shopping and go for a drive down to Mt. Vernon....~Jen

Friday, November 13, 2009

Trash to Treasure: A Green Craft Fair

I love when people have grand ideas, all encompassing and inspirational. Take a great theory and run with it. Add to it and round it out. And, go public with it.

This is my excitement for Trash to Treasure: A Green Craft Fair. A simple idea: have a market of artists and craftspeople who use recycled materials. Build it bigger: ask that visitors think of others and offer a clothing drop off for charity. Make it smarter: have a book exchange table to pass knowledge on. Create some fun: Throw this party at a nature center, where folks can also learn about animals and plants and how to live a life that doesn't harm them.

The Low Down~

What: Trash To Treasure: A Green Craft Fair

Where: Walkins Nature Center, 301 Watkins Park Drive, Upper Marlboro 20774

When: Saturday, November 14, 10am-4pm


This looks to be a wonderful, nature and earth filled day. Join in by bringing clothing to donate and books to trade in!

See you there~Jen

Sunday, November 8, 2009

November Artist of the Month~ Clare Von Herbulis~ Creating Visual Poetry

I am proud and excited to introduce you to a *new* artist that is taking her artistry to the world!

Clare Van Herbulis is one of those people that don't make fast, crazy decisions. She makes ones that seem safe, smart and strong. Now, she's made a choice from the heart and head. To start and focus on a photography business. To create a life of her own vision, of her own momentum.

Clare Von Herbulis Photography - Creating Visual Poetry

Q~How did you get started?

A~ I've always been very visual and into various creative arts, but my interest in photography sparked in 1997 when I lived in Vero Beach, FL. I took a few photography classes at the local art center and my teacher, professional photographer Theresa Motley, soon became my close mentor and friend. She very strongly encouraged me to go to a state photography school and to pursue it as degree and eventually as a career. Even though she recognized my talent and passion at that time, I wasn't so sure and decided to pursue a degree in Interior Design.

Twelve years later and apparently numerous mentions to my boyfriend, P.K., about how much I wanted to get back into photography, he gave me a brand new Nikon camera and equipment for my birthday. I was thrilled to get my hands back on the camera and to let the creativity fly! I took a few local classes and began snapping photos just about everywhere I could. Others began to comment and request photos and the rest is history. It became so clear to me that photography is my passion so I decided in September to leave my former job and start my own photography business. I could not be happier with the challenges, creativity and opportunities that this new venture provides me every day!

Q~Why do you continue?

A~ I've only just begun!

Q~What is a great(or greatest) success story?

A~ For me, my greatest success is getting to the point in my life that I realized that photography is not only my passion, but that I am capable and courageous enough to make the jump from the safe and secure corporate job to creating my own business. Knowing that success is the only option and that it's up to me to be unstoppable in order to make this dream my reality. It was a huge decision for me to make and I have to say that I'm really quite proud of myself for taking that risk, getting myself to this point and for being ready for all that is to come in my photography future!

Q~What is one of your greatest failures?

A~ My greatest failure is probably not always recognizing or appreciating my own photographic talent and ability. I guess we're all our own worst critics and I can be quite hard on myself and critical of my own work. However, I think that it does continue to keep me striving to learn more and to become even better at my craft.

Q~Where do you get your inspiration?

A~ My inspiration comes from everywhere! I am often just driving down the road and I'll see something that sparks an idea. It may be a scene, a landmark, or even a place that may just be a great portrait background. Once I have an idea in my mind and the creative images begin, I literally have to capture it on the camera or the idea doesn't go away!

For portraits, it's always the person themselves that inspires me. It's my goal to not only capture someone's personality, but to capture the individual's soul - the person who resides behind the eyes. Seeing that in a photo and seeing or hearing another person's emotional reaction to a photo is my greatest inspiration and pleasure in my work.

Q~Why do you make/create what you do?

A~ There is something about capturing a moment, a feeling, an expression or an emotion in time and knowing that it will be around forever to tell a particular story. Photos are often so treasured by people it seems for this reason - photos recall memories and treasured moments in one's life and it brings me amazing joy to be able to capture those moments for people.

Q~Where is your favorite place to sell? Or Favorite show?

A~ I don't really have one, but I am really looking forward to "Foto Week DC" this upcoming week. It's my first time attending the event and am excited to see amazing photos from many of the worlds best photographers!

Q~What is one thing you love about your business?

A~ I love evoking emotion from viewers when they see my photographs. To see and hear people's responses as they view my photos, especially ones taken of a loved one - a child, a parent, themselves, etc, - is the absolute best! I also love that the business allows me to make a living by doing what I love each and every day - the ultimate dream!

Q~What is one thing you loathe?

A~ In regard to the business...individuals who decide to take it upon themselves to upload/download or in other words steal another person's artistic work. No matter what realm of art, it is just unacceptable to me disrespect and to lack appreciation for one's artistic work, ability, time and creativity by taking it as your own.

In regard to non-business related...negativity and pessimistic views. I truly believe that there is something good in every one of life's experiences, you may just have to dig deep enough and open wide enough to realize it.

Q~What is your dream about your art?

A~ My photographic dream is to just continue to capture life's moments in photo that people continue to enjoy! The business and making a living from my passion is just icing on the cake for me!

Q~What is your mission?

A~ My mission is to "create visual poetry" and to bring joy and happiness to others along the way.

Q~Where are you based?

A~ I am based out of Alexandria, VA.

Q~Where would you live if you could live anywhere?

A~ That's a tough one..if remaining in the states, I think I'd love to live in San Diego. I think I'm a California girl at heart. I'd also love to live somewhere overseas, perhaps Spain.

Q~What would you be doing if not this?

A~ I'd probably be taking applications for a sugar daddy. haha.. No really, I'd probably still be in the furniture/interior design industry.

Q~What is next?

A~ I know a lot is next - that's for sure! I will be busy in the coming months with scheduled photo sessions and preparing photos/orders for the holidays. Portraits (including prints, custom photo books and custom calendars) have proven to be popular gift ideas!

I will also be quite busy with continuing to get the word out that I've started this new venture as well continuing to expand my knowledge and keep on top of what's new in the industry. There is always something to be revising, editing, learning or experiencing with my new business!

Q~What is your favorite question to ask people?

A~ What's your story? I love people's reactions to that question.

Q~What is your answer to that question?

A~ It's still being written.

For more images and information about Clare Von Herbulis Photography - Creating Visual Poetry, please visit

You can also email Clare at or call 703-629-1175 to set up an appointment for holiday family photos.