News

A Keeper Box of our Old English Sheepdogs – 24 plus one –

Of course by now everyone knows my special breed has to be the Old English Sheepdog.  It’s not like there aren’t others that I love very much like my Hans and Greta – both rescues from Dachshund Rescue groups.  And both very precious.  And the other critters along the way that came from Humane Societies and rescues.  I have to share my latest Keeper Box an intense assortment of our beloved OES – questions are welcome. Size about 10 inch, 8 inch and 4 inches tall.

Marist Holiday Traditions update Karen Dittman Booth Location

Okay we have an update on my location – once Again Centennial Hall – booth space 115 – same location as last year – when you walk in – facing the room I’ll be on your right side up front – about two rows from the wall – the right wall if you are facing the vendors… hope that’s clear 🙂  See you on October 26th at Marist —

Highland’s Women’s Club Show – October 12 2013 Indoors

This is another lovely show, held indoors, that I absolutely love and wouldn’t miss for anything.  Come see a wonderful assortment of crafters – many who only do this show.  Not to be missed.  Come see us here in the Highland’s on October 12th…

Craft Show
Sat., Oct. 12

Starting at 10:00 am – Ending at 5:00 pm

Address

Highlands Rec Park and Civc Center, North 4th street
Highlands NC 28741

Marist Holiday Traditions October 26 2013

      Okay, perhaps this image isn’t the Marist Holiday Traditions show but is an example  of what you may feel at Holiday Traditions this year.  The joy of the holiday to come; the feeling that all’s right with the world and an endless array of crafts from some of the finest crafters I only seem to see here in Atlanta each year.

Most of us don’t have the option of going to a Christmas Market in Europe.  The photo is of Mannheim’s market.  Not bad.  But not Marist Holiday Traditions and there you will only find American Crafter’s at their best.

Please join me once again this year on October 26th for the best of times and arts and crafts that you will find this side of the Mississippi.

I don’t know my spot yet here at this magnificent event however will post same as soon as the packets with the info arrives.  I can’t tell you enough how much I enjoy this show.

Holiday Traditions, sponsored by the Marist School Parents Club, is held each year on the campus of Marist School and is one of the largest juried arts and crafts shows in the Southeast. Produced through the hard work of over 400 volunteers, it is well known for its quality and warm hospitality. All show proceeds go directly to support Marist School programs.
Holiday Traditions 2013
Saturday October, 26, 2013
9 am – 4 pm
Admission: $3
*No strollers

Marist Holiday Traditions update

Ok, I now know where I will be for Holiday Traditions.  Still in Centennial Gym but it looks like they changed the layout a little for this year.  Facing the doors, I will be on the right nearest the door on your right as you enter the gym.  You should see me as you walk in  #115  just on your left if you enter the door on the right.  Looking forward to seeing all of you again.  Will try and post again with some photos of things planned for Marist!

Marist Holiday Traditions – Atlanta November 5 2011

This is probably one of my favorite events to show at or attend – the variety and amount of vendors with beautiful arts, crafts, wares of all kinds for your perusal.  I’ll be there —- not sure of if my location has changed for this show, but hopefully same place as always!

Holiday Traditions, sponsored by the Marist School Parents Club, is held each year on the campus of Marist School and is one of the largest juried arts and crafts shows in the Southeast. Produced through the hard work of over 400 volunteers, it is well known for its quality and warm hospitality. All show proceeds go directly to support Marist School programs.
Holiday Traditions 2011
November 5, 2011
9 am – 4 pm
Admission: $3
*No strollers
3790 Ashford Dunwoody Road. NE
Atlanta GA  30319

 

You Gotta Clean Those Gourds – and prep BEFORE PAINTING

 

For over 15 years now, I have worked with gourds. For the most part, I just paint them. For today, I’d like to address the issues of cleaning and prepping the gourd for painting.

Let’s start at the beginning. I have had frequent questions about cleaning a gourd as well as questions about the moldy appearance a gourd has while drying. Unfortunately, more times than not, people have told me that they threw out the gourd ’cause it was moldy’. That is generally a mistake.

As a gourd dries (the process takes a couple months to as long as a year to dry) it dries from the inside out, mold appears grossly on the outside. That’s ok, it’s drying. IF IT IS NOT SOFT, LEAVE IT ALONE. It’s still drying … mold and all. They seem to like cooler temps while drying, I like to put any gourds that I’m drying on racks during the long drying process.

For an example of gourds I may let dry (I don’t grow them myself, don’t seem to work on my shady land), I usually buy some at Thanksgiving for decorations, the small ones for your dried corn and gourd centerpiece. After the Holiday, I’ll put them on some racks or in a basket and leave them on my front porch to dry. Those that get soft over the months, I toss over the mountain or in a sunny spot that might have a chance for the seeds to grow the next summer. The rest I leave till a day like today or in my case yesterday, hot, sunny, July day when I find the initiative it takes to clean them and I do it en masse.

I found every dried gourd that I had bought, been given or dried myself like the Thanksgiving gourds. Gathered them, a small kiddie pool, bleach, a good scrubbie and set to work. This is not a particularly fun job, more like cleaning silver! Getting all the dirt, mold, old skin off till I find that nice hard shell underneath. You may want to use a mask as recommended. I just throw all in the pool filled with water and a few cups of bleach. Then I get to work scrubbing (use gloves if you must). It takes quite a long time to accomplish this but to date in all the years I have been prepping gourds, this has been the best method I have found for me. I must have cleaned 50 or more gourds yesterday.

After cleaning them I keep them outside to get good and dry. When dry, and I as get ready to “paint” my Santas and other funny things, I prime them with something like Kilz water-based primer.

Why prime? Because of bleed-through. I don’t want some deep stain natural to a gourd bleeding through a beautiful Santa that I have painted with all intentions that it last forever for the people who may acquire it. I don’t want someone to have a ruined piece because I didn’t do the proper prep work. Prepping is everything. Despite what you might see on home improvement shows: Prepping and priming are an insurance policy of durability. Sealing it properly also is a good time investment. I use polyacrylic. While not meant for the outdoors, it is suitable for covered porches. And if you are looking to leave it outside, find a sealer meant for the outdoors. Not one coat, not even two, give it three or four coats of sealer. Again, a little time invested in the finish coat assures you durability and long lasting appeal.

Questions? Ask them. I’ve always been open to giving answers about anything I do with paint!

2008 Show Schedule

                           

   June 14 – Dillsboro Arts & Music Festival, NC   

   July 4-5 – Cashiers NC – Mountain Makings

   Aug 15 – Lake Toxaway – The Greystone Inn, NC

   Aug. 30-31 – Cashiers NC – Fall Fling

   Oct. 11 – Highlands NC – Civic Center

   Nov. 1 – Marist School, Atlanta GA  Holiday Traditions

   Dec. 4-5-6  – St. Ann,  Marietta, GA  Apple Annie

 

 

Upcoming Show – May 17-18 Cashiers NC 10-5 -Come On Out

Wow, hard to believe my show season is about to begin. While I choose to do only about 10 shows a year, it’s always exciting when the first one comes – it’s like a kick-off to a whole new adventure filled year. So come on out to Cashiers NC – see the sights, the art show, and enjoy yourself. These shows to date have always had a wonderfully diverse group of artisans – pottery, weaving, basketry, folk art, oils, pastels, purses, furniture, blacksmith – and so much more. These are the shows I buy my Christmas presents at – afterall my family already has my stuff so I try to find different art forms to surprise them with.
Here’s something I found on Cashiers NC for you to read if you are unfamiliar with Cashiers, NC – all of the areas around my town of Brevard, are wonderul to visit, More to follow on Scenic 276 in Transylvania County- an exciting highway of art, eats, b&b’s, cabins, antiques, oh what wonder appears here! Check back later in the week for that info. Now for that info on CASHIERS

http://outside.away.com/outside/destinations/200408/best_american_dream_towns_4.html

the following comes directly from their site:

“COMBINE THE DRASTIC granite dropoffs of the Blue Ridge escarpment with more than 80 inches of rain a year and something dramatic is bound to happen. Around the town of Cashiers (pronounced CASH-ers), perched at 3,500 feet on the Eastern Continental Divide, the jackpot shows up in the form of waterfalls—everything from tiny cliffside seeps to 400-foot-plus cataracts that roar into deep gorges. The downtown is little more than a crossroads, the junction of U.S. 64 and North Carolina 107, and a mile or so radius of antique shops, high-end restaurants, and second-home clusters discreetly tucked into the woods.

OUTDOORS: Hikers can go short, on spur trails to waterfall lookouts, or take on longer segments of the Foothills Trail or the Chattooga River Trail. Fly-fishers and kayakers pilgrimage to the Nantahala, Ocoee, and Chattooga rivers. Panthertown Valley, a 6,700-acre wilderness area, is the closest fat-tire-trail web, and the Tsali Recreation Area, a one-and-a-half-hour drive west, is an

 

off-roader’s dream, with more than 40 miles of epic singletrack. The thousand-foot cliffs of Whiteside Mountain provide the kind of hairy, multipitch, huge-exposure climbs that would almost make you swear someone had trucked the place out from Yosemite.”