Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Supporting Fine Arts and Crafts #1

Visiting Midwest Artist-Kellie Truppa

Good morning, grab a cup of coffee and sit down
and enjoy some NEW stunning artisan works by Kellie Truppa.

Every now and then, I'm going to showcase an artist who works with an OLD vintage feel, or GREEN recycled materials, or is just darn gorgeous. 
And, Kellie Truppa's work demonstrates all of these.


Unbelievably, this was Kellie's first art show, and she has apparently been doing this intricate beadwork for quite awhile. We found her at a small art fair on the square in Palatine, Illinois earlier this month. Her inspiration for this piece was the ceramic medallion as the focal point.


 I love the way she echoes the motifs and works them through the whole piece.

While we gushed and 'ooh-ed and ahh-ed', Kellie told us she is basically self taught. She chooses natural stones or materials and found pieces...and 
lets the key focal dictate her other choices of beads and stones. 
I can't emphasize how gorgeous these pieces are. The subtle mix of the natural stones and iridescent beads, besides the intricate designs, were breathtaking.


She had quite a few larger pieces elegantly displayed on black velvet 
and a few accessories in her booth. 
One side was filled with bracelets, that my pictures didn't quite catch. 
So I'm just going to show these stunning necklaces.


Here you can see the wide variety of beads and stones she uses, 
all had stitched onto a backing and then lined with microsuede. 
I should have taken a picture of the back of one of her unfinished pieces,
 as the web of threads is art work in itself.


 I love the Egyptian feel of this piece. 
We recommended she contact the Natural History Museum gift shop here in Chicago, 
for that venue would be perfect for this gorgeous work.


Here the natural Carnelian and Malachite stones and beads are accented 
with several different kinds of gold and metallic beads.

 Here's Kellie generously sharing her process and her goody box of unfinished pieces, 
each one more beautiful then the last.

The box of works in progress.


 Here is how she begins a work...starting with the focal bits and then building out. 
All the beads are stitched onto a base of felt like fabric. 
She told us everything is double stitched so nothing will ever become detatched or lost. 

I love the rustic look of this piece with the wood-like stones surrounded with the pearl beads. 
The backing is eventually trimmed away and the face-lined with microsuede. 
The edges are then enclosed by beading and stitching the collar shut. 

Wow! This one is going to be a stunner, I can see it now...with just a touch of bling with those iridescent Czech glass cabochons encircled with stone-toned beads. 

Kellie says, she is never quite sure where the design is going to take her and takes the organic approach of 'going with it for the ride'.

Even the simpler designs are intricate, 
here the focal stone dictates the bead rings in the collar. 
Remember every stone and bead is double stitched 
to the backing with amazing craftsmanship.

Kelli has yet to start a website...but can be reached by email, please send your comments or inquiries to her or here, because this work needs to be appreciated and seen. 
Kellie Truppa -- k.truppa@att.net

Hope you enjoyed visiting an artist's work.

 I will be linking here to the following sites:


All the opinions and photographs in this blog are my own, I have not been paid or reimbursed in anyway my opinions or posts. Please do not use photos without linking back to this blog without my permission. Thank you for your cooperation, Sandi Magle

Monday, September 21, 2015

Fall Arrangement for Our Porch

Fall Arrangement for Our Porch

Hope you all had a beautiful weekend.
The weather was gorgeous here in Chicagoland and I was busy in the garden, attending a fab art show, my writer's group and the grand baby here all day on Sunday. 
Temperatures have dropped, but the pumpkins are still GREEN in the garden. 
This morning, I had to REDO my porch one more time.

In My last post I had begun to make Happy Fall on our front porch. 
There were a few places still waiting for some Fall action though. 

This hale bale just screamed---FALLIFY me. 
The lime dracena plant so much like too-green cornstalks. 
Behind a corner shelf is full of some house plants that will be back in the house soon. 
But, what to use, here?
Years ago before we had the patio furniture, I had a big round table 
staged in the corner every season, with a big arrangement or artifact display. 
So I went in search for my OLD antique gray graniteware coffeepot.


Then I remembered my Junkin' in Grannys' Garage post and the marvelous bucket of flowers
 I found to REDO with.
I have to confess, my original antique/craft shop had a garden theme. 
And everything was filled with flowers, greenery, fruits, vegetables, or some sort of rocks, moss or candles. I have tons of product left, as I closed rapidly before I could sell it all. 
Thinking I would do shows, I kept way too much.
So now, all I have to do is go to the basement and dig---and it's all there. 
(I have donated tons---though and only kept what I actually love.)

Here's the OLD Graniteware coffeepot filled with rustic wildflowers, grasses and thistles. 
I always use naturals mixed with silks to add a GREEN element.
Normally I would use five sunflowers as focal points, but that was just too much. 
So there are three dark purple Delphiniums, three Cattails, five of those burgundy thistle balls, 
five multi stems of brown-eyed Susans from a bush, the three Sunflowers, one triple stem of Queen Anne's Lace, half a gray bush of some sort of grain stem, 
and lots of naturals/grasses, twigs, zebra grass, curly ting-ting and more.

Here is how the arrangement looks in its designated corner. 
TIP:When doing arrangements for outside---avoid using
 any hand-wrapped berries or high-end flowers. 
Less expensive stems will hold up longer. 
Nothing in this arrangement was over $5.00 a stem at today's prices… 
and most suppliers sell NEW florals on SALE discounted 50% off every other week.
 Estimated cost for this selection would be $30-35 at sale prices.
Custom done----way more! LOL.


Heres a wide shot with a bitty pumpkin from our garden and 
the dracaena (cornstalks) next to it. The little cherub plaque looks on adoringly.
I think its just the right amount of color pop needed here.

Closeup on the grasses and other elements in the design. 
Choosing naturals, helps to make the arrangement look not so 'designed'.


Lots of grasses and structure elements in the back support the flowers. 
We have heavy wind here and I know from experience to arrange this way. 
Also weigh down your outdoor containers.
 Rocks are in the bottom of the coffeepot and three blocks of floral foam, 
so the stems are inserted deep into the container.
 I attached picks to stems or gobs of hot glue to really secure things. 
TIP: The test of a well done arrangement is to turn it upside down and shake it. 
Nothing but tiny bits of moss should fall out. 

 This shows the backside fan structure in this 3/4 arrangement. 
I knew I would only be using this arrangement for this space, 
so I designed it front facing and sized for that particular spot. 
You can see how cheap the cattails are. 
It's hard to find quality cattails, for some reason, 
so I always use them in the rear of my fall arrangements.

"Fall is Pumpkin Time!"
Behind is the OLD chalkboard I used in my brick and mortar shop, 
BarberryLane, to announce specials or just to say 'Welcome'. 


Speaking of Pumpkins, my squirrel decorator continues 
to enhance my pots and displays with walnuts. 
This one was found right in the back corner of the frame, 
so I moved it up front. 
Squirrel said, "One always needs a bit more green."

Thanks for stopping by, if you have any questions, please ask.

Linking at these Fab blog parties this week:


All the opinions and photographs in this blog are my own, I have not been paid or reimbursed in anyway for my opinions or posts. Please do not use photos without linking back to this blog without my permission. Thank you for your cooperation, Sandi Magle