Favorite Newest Podcast

hellogorgeous

I truly love when I run up against a podcast that I had no idea was out there.

Knitting, while nestled in my space, looking for the perfect podcast, I landed on Mandarine’s Podcast; Melody Hoffman, designs inspired by nature, folklore, and minimalism. A delightful voice to listen to, engaging, and charismatic. Pure joy.

Take a minute to listen to her. You won’t be sorry. I promise! Oh…don’t forget to grab some knitting and something to sip on.

Melody has a beautiful website too. Her photographs are stunning.

Oh my! I’m fan-girl’ing all over the place here. *smiling*

Get the Pattern Moonlight Garden Shawl

I feel it might be fun to interview her. Shhh, don’t mention this just yet, I will need to talk with her.

For now, lovely knitters, stay awesome and remember to take time for yourself.

Hugs!

~Deb

Make Art That Sells

Good Morning creative friends!

Today marks Day 1 of my Bootcamp with Lilla Rogers. Do you know of her?

Yes? Fantastic, isn’t she? *smiling-fan girl here*

No? Let me tell you about her.

She is an Illustration agency that represents the best artists. She  licenses and sells work for surface design. You know…those cute, whimsical pieces of fabric, stationary, etc, all over the market?

A couple of examples I found were:

surfacedesign
Zoe Ingram
surfacedesign2
Land of Nod Queen Flannel Sheets

Super Cute stuff. It’s the coloring, patterning, and structuring of fiber and fabric. This is what I want to learn/do/create/sell.

My end goal is to be a surface designer. Did I say that out loud?! YES! Yes, I did!

So, why do I tell you all this? Because I’ve enrolled in Lilla Rogers MATS Bootcamp. Make Art That Sells. It is 5 months long. 5 large assignments with 5 mini assignments, and lots of fun things in between. I’m excited for this new adventure. I’ve been searching for that next thing to take me out of my comfort zone and into a zone that will test my skills, faith in myself as an artist, and give me the ability to create in another medium.

I found it!

I’m ready…

FullSizeRender

bobbedhair1920
My first Mini assignment. 1920’s Hairstyles

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So, I hope you’ll stick with me through these next 5 months. I plan to blog about my journey (good and challenging).

CoLoR outside the lines and find YoUr HaPpY!

Deb

What Makes You Happy

whatevermakesyouhappy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is quite the profound statement. Kind of intense, yet insightful. I’d like to think that analyzing quotes can give us a place to start, or something to think on.

I often sit with my laptop, feet propped on my cute ottoman, in my office. Sometimes, it brings inspiration as I look out my window. Other times, it’s the simpleness of a quote.

In this case, it’s the quote:

I have the passion, the drive, the opportunity to make my life what I want. Some call it blessed. I’m definitely that! I feel that what makes you happy, makes you successful. In whatever medium you choose. In whichever way you’d like to interpret this.

In someone who delights in positive thinking, I love the idea of this saying and that someone thought enough of it to allow us to enjoy it.

Let’s describe happiness, because this is what they’re talking about, right?

As we are all human, I suspect you want to be happy. You want to do something that makes you happy. Happiness for me is sitting down to knit with friends, it’s teaching others the craft, it’s drawing circles, trees and flowers, then coloring them. It’s tearing up fabric (coming soon to my studio), it’s sewing on a special quilt, it’s designing wHaTeVeR. Happiness is spending time with my loved ones, reading a good book, or just sitting in my comfy spot with my thoughts.

Absorbing my Vitamin D for the day makes me happy. I know, it’s the little things sometimes. It doesn’t always have to be about work.

What makes me happy, may not be what makes you happy.

So, I say figure it out, friends, and find your happy!

~Deb

what-makes-you-happy

 

Inspiring YOUR Creative Side

Hello February 2

First off, Happy February.

Ok, I’m a day late, but I’ve been snowed in with nothing but a warm fire, a hot cup of coffee and my knitting/micron pens/colored pencils and a sewing machine. I’m sure you understand.

So, here’s what I’m thinking. Inspiring A Creative Life is the theme to this blog. Why not, for the month of February, have a daily or every other day challenge. However you want to work it. I know, this will be for my own good as well as yours. It will keep us from being challenged with “what do I do now”. Yes, I have work stuff I could do, but this will be more fun, as well as, continue to feed OUR creative side.

I will provide a list below for the month of February. Yes, today counts.  You can choose to check off all 20 or pick the ones that speak to you. You probably noticed I didn’t do one for each day of the month.

That’s unrealistic. We all have busy lives, yet if you’re following along here on the blog, it’s because Creativity IS in your vocabulary.

Either way, you will be inspiring YOUR creative side. I’d love to see pics–which can be posted on Instagram by using #inspiringyourcreativeside OR here if you’re not an insta kind of girl or guy. Your comments below will be fun to read as well.

I want to be inspired by YOU!

cute-life-quotes
THIS is what inspire me to be me. What inspires You?

Keep in mind, we all interpret differently, so this may be your own idea of what each is. Your style is what’s important here.  This can be photography, drawing, knitting, crochet. It can be sewing or a coloring page. Maybe you doodle or create beautiful hand lettering. Whatever your interpretation is, is what makes it YOURs.

Here Goes…Let’s have funcreativity

 

February-Inspiring YOUR Creative Side

1: Flower

2: Texture

3: Playtime

4: Family

5: Home

6: Simplistic

7: Circle

8: Line

9: Happy

10: Morning

11: Hobby

12: You

13: Joy

14: Nature

15: Color

16: Mealtime

17: Inspire

18: Knit

19: Round

20: Heart

So, go be inspired, friends! Let’s share, chat, and be AWESOME this month. Show me what you can do.

CoLoR OuTsIdE ThE LiNeS and Find YOUR happy!

~Deb

Creative Journey

Hello Creative Friends!

keepcalmcreating

How do you describe a creative journey, or better yet, YOUR creative journey?

Creative journey can have many meanings. One which describes what it does, how it makes one feel, or how it helps one learn their strengths.

For me it’s inspiring others to create something that brings them joy, maybe relieves a bit of stress, or just allows them creative freedom. It’s what makes me happy. It’s what drives my day. If you’ve been following for awhile, or you’re new to my blog, you will have seen me go from writer to knitter to designer to author. I threw in some quilting, as that’s always a go-to for me. Then I discovered coloring and drawing. That led me down a path to learn more about micron pens and what else I could do with them. And oh, did I mention the beautiful lines you can draw with KOI markers?

I’ve been on a creative path for quite some time. It has allowed me to play with different mediums, bring new friends into my world, and even opened my eyes to a new form of art. I have so much to share in the way of this journey, yet I want to hold back a bit, as this may be my next WIP (book). There’s something in me that feels I need to bring my story to life. You may be interested, you may not. Either way, it will be a journey in itself.

A written journal of sorts, maybe blog style. I do love to write, so for me, this journey will be filled with pictures, projects and words of wisdom.

I found this and had to share. Oh, but look at the lettering. One of my favorite pasttimes is to figure out a different way to write a word. Hand Lettering how-to videos are my constant youtube obsession.

creative life

So what brings you joy? What drives your day? Your Creative Journey?

Let’s discuss…

Create a Creative Journey all your own and find your joy!

~Deb

Embracing my LoPsIdEd Thinking

I really thought my blogging days were over.

faceplant

I wanted to title this blog post, Embracing my Crazy, but, well…I didn’t want you all thinking I was crazy. *smiling*

 

This past year, I found myself reflecting on how my journey began…

as a knitter, then learning the ins and outs of being a designer, then starting a business and beginning the next phase of my life. It really was the next phase. I left a nursing career in 2008 and went blindly into a creative field.

A BIG step. Learning to think with the right side of my brain rather than my left. Though, both work together in my world.

I was excited to see what was next. Where my creativity would take me. Etsy was my first business venture. Online was a safe place where I could show the (virtual) world what I was selling. October 2009 was the grand opening of Dishcloth Diva Knits On. Who knew the name of my store would one day be the title of my book(s). 

Even though I was ready for a change, I was excited to see where it would take me next. “Oh, the places you’ll go“, I kept telling myself. Or maybe, hoping. I was filled with doubts of, can I do this, and I want to be like (this designer). Comparing yourself is so easy at times, yet it fills you with self doubt and , can I be as good as them, type of questions.

ohtheplacesyou'll go

In 2012, I felt in my heart it was time to produce a book, Dishcloth Diva, geared toward those beginner knitters that I was teaching to knit. Their enthusiasm was contagious and often left me feeling proud of them for accomplishing this craft. Then in 2013, just one year later, Dishcloth Diva Knits On was published.

This past summer, thoughts of closing my Etsy shop quickly surfaced. I was facing burnout, and it was happening quickly. I was suddenly faced with mental turmoil and how or if, I could turn this around. It continued to get worse.

And then, late summer, I was introduced to coloring. Adult Coloring Books. My husband, Mr. Engineer, ordered one from Amazon. I remember him coloring down in our studio with these crazy cool markers. Oh boy! I became instantly curious. Maybe I could do this and take my mind off of my burnout. That led to drawing, then art classes online. Coloring offers me a place to go where nothing but me and my pencils/pens live. The stress of the day melts away. Have you tried it? Oh, you SO should!

coloring page1

shading

So, I’m coming back. Blogging is my way of being creative. And I have so much more in me. It’s helped me to grow and love writing, though writing has always been a part of me. Etsy will remain open, though I’ve narrowed it down to a pattern shop only. A (creative) type of nonfiction is being developed.

I’ve made a long list of topics to cover. Some will be short. Some will be “are you ever going to stop writing?”.

My message (or theme/motto) for 2016 is #inspiringacreativelife. I hope you’ll jump on my wagon and # along with me. I’m on Instagram as well. Come follow. My days will be filled with fun pictures of all things creative to include: knitting, designing, coloring, drawing and even sewing. I love my life and everyday am thankful for what I have, for the gifts I receive, and the talents that live inside me.

beingcreative

Take care and remember, being creative is NoT a hobby, it IS a way of LiFe. #inspiringacreativelife

~Deb

 

 

What’s in a Name?

Good Morning Knitters!

I have so much on my mind this morning, I thought I’d just chat with you all a bit.

Let’s start with, What’s in a Name? What does that mean? Well…

When you hear the name Martina Behm, what designs do you think of? Shawls

Heidi May of the Velvet Acrorn? Cute animal hoodie/cowls and kid accessory patterns.
Hannah Fettig? Sweaters
Stephen West? Shawls, specifically Rockefeller.
Tiny Owl Knits? BeeKeepers Quilt.
Mason-Dixon? Ballband Dishcloth
Stephanie Pearl-McPhee? Socks
Susan B Anderson? Her Plain Vanilla Socks & Animals.

Now, for the big question, What do you think of when you hear, Deb Buckingham?

I’m curious.

Branding is so important to anyone who has a business of any kind. It tell you, the consumer, what you can expect from (me) as far as products and service go. It differentiates (us) from each other.

My brand is derived from who I am, who I want to be, and who you, my customer, perceive me to be.

With all this said, a new business plan is in the making. Yes, I will be designing. Yes, I will stay true to my audience. Yes, I will continue to offer fun, easy to follow patterns. And Yes, I will stay true to me, and the same quality patterns you’ve always received from me.

Things I will be considering are: A new logo, integrating my brand through that logo, creating a “voice” for my company that reflects my brand, creating templates, (using same color scheme, logo placement, look and feel for my patterns and marketing materials) and most important, to YOU and ME, is being consistent.

By the way, did you notice the butterfly theme? Hmm…that may be part of my branding.

I hope you’ll follow along on Facebook, if you don’t already. Check out my Etsy shop where new patterns will be listed. My Ravelry shop where hundreds of knitters shop everyday.

So, as I always say,

Knit On!
Deb

Am I Missing Something?

Hi Knitters!

Haven’t we often heard that question, whether someone truly didn’t understand your intentions or they just missed something. Seriously, there’s a way in which it is interpreted.

Right?

I need to explain to you all what exactly I do, and who exactly my audience is, at this time.

I began designing in the year 2008. My focus was myself at that time, as I was somewhat of a beginner knitter. After I watched countless videos, read 100’s of books, and watched my friends as they made their way through a beautiful project, I realized what kind of designer I should be.

A designer that focuses on the simple. Simple Detailing. Simple stitches. Just. Simple. From that time till now, my audience has been beginners. I’ve taught beginners. I’ve walked beginners through issues. I’ve designed for beginners.

So, when someone questions my intentions from said project, I get a bit defensive. Though, after reading back the posts she and I wrote, I quickly deleted it. Why? Because it goes back to what I just wrote, I’m a simple designer with the beginning knitter in mind. They don’t know how to stripe the yarn or how many stitches to cast on or even do the math to figure them out. I love to be the one to do that for them. I often receive emails asking me, if I used your dishcloth pattern and wanted to make it bigger, how would I do that. Simply put…know your gauge, stitches per inch, with said yarn and needle, and multiply that number by how many inches you want the finished object to be.

Simple for the more advanced knitter, but not for the beginner.

This design is adorable, right? I’m just attempting to show you all what kind of designs you will continue to see. If you’re following me on Facebook or this blog, you quickly realize, the patterns you see are easy. Step by step instructions. No charts.
I love doing these. For me, it’s a pleasure to help the novice knitter get their bearings. It’s tough. We all were beginners at one time. We all had to take baby steps. So, there has to be patterns out there that address the beginner. Though, with that said, there are many knitters, myself included, who love a change of pace, a break from the sweater or shawl we’re working on. THIS type of project is perfect.
*stepping down (carefully) off my soap box*
Let me introduce my newest design.
I adore this pattern. And the texture it creates is thick and perfect for your kitchen. And did I mention it has the coolest, most simple, unique Icord? It does!
So, stick with me as I show you new patterns that will keep you sane or help you learn.
Hugs to you all!! You know my heart and how much I appreciate you ALL.
Knit On!!
Deb

TKGA Recap

Hi Knitters & Crocheters!

Well, it’s been a week and some days since I’ve been back from conference. As much as I looked forward to getting away, I looked (even more) forward to coming home. Getting back into my routine is always a good thing. 

So, I wanted to take some time and give you some feedback. You know, the things I loved and the not-so-exciting parts for me.

I arrived Wednesday, July 22nd. The shuttle driver was so cool, and explained to me that the previous week the sewers and quilters were riding in his van to the Town and Country Hotel. Must be quite the spot, I thought to myself. 


And let me tell you, the hotel was charming, full of character, and the rooms were inviting. The guy told me I was on the 8th floor. Well, those that know me, know that heights aren’t my thing. *eeek*  But, the views were beautiful. The movie, Pretty Woman, quickly came to mind. I viewed from the slider, as close to the slider as I could get. 🙂

See the green umbrellas just past the pool? That was my spot every morning for coffee, every afternoon for tea, and most evenings if there was someone down there to talk with.

After putting away my things, I ventured downstairs to locate some coffee and conversation. The people I met were so friendly, as all knitters and crocheters are, right? 

Well, I sat there for awhile, found the coffee, got out my knitting and people watched.

By now, you’re probably asking yourself, where is the conference stuff. I have to be honest…here it comes…I wasn’t impressed (at that moment). I know! I should have been, it was TKGA for goodness sake, but for me, the wow factor wasn’t there (yet).

I’ll explain…

Knitters and Crocheters were very friendly as you would expect. Yes, I was able to sit at any table and chat. Yes, they always asked what I was working on. Yes, I gave out a lot of cards.

Being Wednesday, there wasn’t a lot going on. A few classes had started and the conference was underway. But, where were all the people? That was what was most surprising to me. There didn’t seem to be a large crowd.

Thursday was a bit nicer with more people arriving, but still not to the level I would have expected. The coffee line was now longer. 🙂 That told me many more had arrived. This hotel had only one Market where you could get a sandwich or salad, coffee or tea. The little restaurant next door served Breakfast and Lunch, which I did most mornings. Breakfast anyway. As for dinner, well, the main restaurant had closed down just the week before. We did discover a mall within walking distance. Score! We ate dinner there. 

You can definitely see the charm, can’t you? The food was awesome. The fruit was fresh cut. I found this to be my every morning breakfast spot. 

I went for a walk around the property and found some fun plants and trees…

I met some great friends who I think I will remain connected with for a long time…From top right: Gloria, Barbara, Sharon and myself. These ladies made me laugh the entire time. And our server was adorable. He escaped before we could snap a picture of him.

So, what about the shopping, Deb? 

Glad you asked…

I wasn’t thrilled. Though, honestly, I think this conference is very heavy on the crochet. That may have been more of my issue. Though, the amount of vendors was lacking, in my opinion. I’m guessing 50 or so vendors. Not a lot when it’s part of a conference.  

I walked into the room and Red Heart booth is right there. Very impressive actually. Some very cool people were hanging around that booth. You know, it was in the hotel’s conference center, right there on the hotel property. Convenient? Yes!

This is a Marly Bird and Myself. Pop over and visit both of our Facebook pages, we love to interact with our peeps.

Here’s the funny part…The minute I turned my camera around to do the selfie, my comment was, “OMG, look at my hair.” She busted out laughing. This is the picture after I got over it. 🙂 I adore Marly. She’s so genuine, happy, and loves to talk with you.

Now, I did watch a fashion show. It was fun. There were a lot of fun pieces, though the two that caught my eye were:


Both of which were crochet.

BUT…The Best thing EVER for me was the YARNOVER TRUCK!!! OMG! Here are some pics. These are not from the conference. I think I was so in awe of this truck that pulled right into the room, I forget to get a few pictures. 

YARNOVER TRUCK– pics courtesy of google images

I mean, who thinks of things like this? Maridee and Barbra. Read about their story here. These two women are so friendly and inviting, you can’t help but step into the back of this truck. 

So, you can clearly see the things that appealed to me and the things that did not. I’m not sure if it was because I’ve been to two very large conferences, Stitches and VKL. Both of which had hundreds of vendors. This was a smaller scale type of event. Though, I had a great time, met some fun women, and made some business contacts. THAT was worth it for me. 

Would I go again? If you had asked me that on the last day of the event, I’d probably  have said no. But, after recapping the event, I would have to say, YES! It was worth every cent. I think I also realized I made a quick judgment based on the number of people attending and the lack of vendors. This isn’t enough to keep me from going again.

I chose not to take any classes because when I signed up, the choices weren’t there for me as a knitter. The ones I would have taken were sold out. The class sizes were too small according to my peeps. I’m wondering if it was the lack of space that kept them smaller. Just a guess, though. 

That’s my take on the whole event. I stayed the length of the conference, though I did leave before the final event Saturday night. 

So, as I always say,

Knit On! (and don’t be judgmental of an event until you’ve re-thought all the details.) 😉

Hugs!
Deb

Patterns, Dishcloths, Color Inspiration, and more…

Curvy in all The Right Places

Hi Knitters!

I’ve been working on so many projects lately, to include planning for a new book. *squee*

Yes, there will be a Book 3 in the Dishcloth Diva Series. Well, it’s still in its infant stages, as I only just now sent over the contract to my publisher. This book will be fun, full of more dishcloths, and even more ideas. 

As we have discovered, a lot of knitters love to cast on a dishcloth. Whatever your reason, I think that’s fantastic! 

Do you need a change from you lace knitting? How about a gift for someone? A housewarming gift? As we all travel over the summer, what a fun gift to hand to that person who chose to open their house to you. 

Here are many of the “favorites” among my repeat customers.

Ashley – Knit

Tideway – Crochet
Omaha – Crochet

Mom and Apple Pie – Knit

As I pack to get ready for a trip, the first thing I pack is my knitting. You too? I always have some size 7 needles and cotton yarn packed. What is easier than sitting in an airport knitting on a washcloth and people watching.  

As Always,

Knit On!!

Deb