Art Gifts


I have fabulousness to show you today! Is that a word? If it isn’t – it should be because it totally describes all I want to show you! Occasionally I have a package arrive unexpectedly in the mail and I can’t wait to rip it open and check out what is inside. The pieces of art I want to show you today all came to me in the mail over the past month or two. I didn’t make any of this art. My friends did and I want to share it with you here.

Andrea Kine hails from Ohio. Her critters make me smile and chuckle and I love them all! She has such a great imagination and eye for cuteness and lovability! Andrea posted a picture of this little guy in our Facebook group Tangle All Around and I told her how much I loved it! And the next thing I knew he showed up in my mail. Can you just say, ‘Eeek!?’ Cause I did! Side note * Andrea is one of the international tangle artists featured in my latest book Tangle All Around the World.

This beautiful card came to me in a swap package from Cynthia Blackwell. Cynthia is a member of Facebook group Creative Crafty Friends where we participate in art swaps. I don’t remember what the swap was for but Cynthia added this elegant card she created. Love the fiber in that mulberry paper base behind the Thank You component. And that bow! Wowzers!

Priscilla DeConti is a sister kind of friend that I met through Tangle All Around. Recently she sent me a lovely hand made card and this package of tiles she colored using various products and techniques. That lower right tile is one of hers that I have already tangled. I think I am going to work on that speckled one in the middle next!

Don’t you just love this lady? Hahaha! That signature PD stands for Priscilla DeConti, yep, she sent me this, too. Priscilla sells her art at craft and vendor fairs. She showed us this gorgeous flamingo in Tangle All Around and said it was for a vendor show. Hahaha! I asked her ‘how much?’ and told her I wanted to purchase this one from her. Priscilla sent it to me. Free of charge. She wouldn’t take a cent for it. Priscilla, you are such a wonderful friend and sister. I am so thankful God put our paths together! And not just because of these lovelies you sent me! But because we truly are sisters at heart.

How would you like to open a package and find this cheeky guy staring at you? Hahahaha! I love him so much! He was a complete surprise! My incredible artist friend Robin Mead of Robin Mead Designs down south had been crocheting owl ornaments and I asked for two. Let me show you.

Aren’t they adorable???? I swear I don’t know where Robin gets all her ideas. Something different all the time – but always colorful and bright and unique. So much like Robin herself. I just love her! Those pink letters up there are a link to her store. Be sure you check it out. The paper owl will be hanging on one of my trees this year along with these two!

Rachel Foster is also an artist living in Ohio. Rachel does wonderful collage art – unique and fun and eclectic. She and I send each other packages of scraps and papers and bits and bobs to make art with. Last week I received an unexpected surprise package from her. This thankful tag was the first thing I pulled out of the mailer. Love that stamp art on it. I used to have a Tiffany lamp much like the one on the stamp. Before my husband dropped a hammer on it and destroyed the whole thing. But that’s another story. All the details she adds – so beautiful!

Rachels tangles as well as anyone but collage art is really her area of expertise! She has a great eye for putting pieces together like this post card sized piece. Did you notice the similar shapes in the salt and pepper shakers and the field glasses/binoculars in the paper background? A good eye!

Tags are one of Rachel’s specialties. And recycling pieces like that tea bag tag. My eyes immediately went to the word ‘Doloroso’ – I used to sing in church a lot and Via Dolorosa by Sandi Patti was a solo piece I did a couple times. I even sang one of the verses in Spanish. This tag instantly transported me back to those days and I can still see the smile on Cynthia Velasquez’ face when I started the Spanish part of the song for the first time. She was sitting on the back row and I instantly spotted that smile. I was nervous about singing in Spanish in a Florida country-ish church but Cynthia’s smile instantly put me at ease. Good memories, thanks, Rachel!

But this piece right here is why I call Rachel the Queen of Collage! This is an envelope Rachel made from a page torn out of a cookbook and sprayed with ink. Those roses along the left are tissue paper – love it. And Rachel uses printed materials in pretty much everything she makes. Like that sheet music. And over the past couple years she has shared with me – book pages, sheet music, newspapers, magazine pages – in various languages. Medical papers, receipts, restaurant order slips. It all works.

Inside the envelope was this package. I wish I knew where she got those rose stickers – I love them! And see what I mean about the paper – two pieces. I don’t know what language the top piece is – this is just one thing that stands Rachel’s art apart.

This is another. Hahaha! I was surprised when I turned the package around to see that it was a recycled oatmeal packet. How many times have I just tossed those in the trash???? But Rachel turned it into something wonderful.

And inside were these two ATC coins – 2.5″ in diameter. Just beautiful! Love all the gems! You can get new ideas just from studying her art! Side note * Rachel is also one of the international tangle artists featured in Tangle All Around the World.

Just a couple days ago I received a surprise package from Christine Reyes, my Pennsylvania artist friend. Isn’t this watercolored card Christine made beautiful? Her style – she loves to watercolor and flowers are kind of her signature thing. I think she likes making flowers more than any other art element. And she is so great at it!

Christine’s package had a lot of cool stuff in it! Check this out! That is two sides of the same hexagon. Christine used alcohol inks to color this – at least I think she did. And I love the A she sent. Both the hexagon and the letter are made of a thicker plastic material. Non-porous, so perfect for inks.

Christine sent me a couple colored tiles, a stack of hexagon tile blanks and one of the hexagons like the one she colored. Can’t wait to play with that! Probably with my Marabu alcohol inks. Yay!!!

One can never have too much washi tape. Hahahaha! And a beautiful Breathe tag – did you know Christine is the friend who helps me make all the Tangle Starts books actually happen? She is my technical super ninja friend who tells me there is a way when I say there is no way. Who says let’s try this when I say this doesn’t work. Who tells me put it in your dropbox when I am at wit’s end trying to figure it out. She taught me all about Quark, and Dropbox, and PDFs and she tried to teach me about InDesign but that one didn’t take. Hahahaha! And I can just hear her telling me breathe!

And this is absolutely what Christine would tell me when I worry about what other people think. When I worry about people ‘getting’ me. Don’t worry about it. Be yourself. Even better . . . be a crab. <3 Thank you for making this for me, Christine, it is getting framed and going up on a wall in my studio.

And Christine sent me this cute little watercolored guy. I showed it to Mark and said these are Christine’s colors! with a big smile on my face. Cause they are. Mine, too, just add some teal but when I think about Christine’s art blue and purple come to mind. Side note * Christine is another of the international artists featured in Tangle All Around the World. And she walked me through some technical minefields to make it happen.

Do you recognize this artist? I can’t believe I have an original piece of her art!!! I didn’t just receive this, actually I have had this for a couple years. When we moved to Maine I put some boxes down in the basement and I am just getting to one that still had art in it. Maybe you see that Michele B. up there on the right and maybe that means something to you. Michele Beauchamp is one of the first tangle artists I started following. One of my heroes in the arts. I love everything about her art style and I want to be her when I grow up. Not creepy at all. Hahahaha! I really do love her artistic ideas and I really have studied her pictures – to try to get an idea of what I love so much about them. Actually, I also have a tile Michele sent me back during one of the big time hurricanes we had in Florida. And a card she tangled. And I wish I could say ‘side note’ here but I can not. Maybe in the next book. I’ll have to see if I can get Michele – or Shelly Beach as some of you know her – to design a new tangle for Tangle All Around the World 2. Hmmmm.

Friends. Where would we be without them? Lonely and bored and uninspired. Friends make our lives richer and fuller and give us meaning. The good friends do. And I thank God every day for the good people He has put into my life. I never want to take any of them for granted. And that includes you who have read this far. You make me smile, too. And I am so thankful for you! Your comments make my day!

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22 thoughts on “Art Gifts

  1. Thank you this was a fun and inspirational column. Good luck with your first snow.


  2. Beautiful !! Love my Christine ❤️❤️❤️??She is a superhero friend!! She is a presenter at Tangke Philly 2020!

  3. Wow, Alice! Just WoW!!! I can definitely see how you stay so creative with all that inspiration your friends send you. And in turn, you inspire us all with your playful genius! Thank you for all the ideas you share with us (every day). And when you are not creating, you are still inspiring us with your beautiful pictures of Maine!

  4. A glorious post & so true. Thank you for all you do……… your generosity with time & experience & just ‘YOU.’ That crab idea……..won’t forget that in a hurry.

  5. WOW! Gorgeous things, lucky lady! You deserve every bit of fun, love and appreciation you get!
    Love ya

  6. What a great post..You have such wonderful friends..but that is because you are a good friend/sister . Enjoy all your gifts as you deserve them and more..Stay safe with snow and ice storms…God Bless

    • thank you – I have your flamingo lady hanging on a wall here in my studio – she is beautiful!

  7. Alice, thank you very much for including me on your Art Gifts article!! It feels great when your art is appreciated and treasured.? I think it’s because you are sharing a piece of yourself.

    I really enjoyed reading and seeing your gifts from your other artists/friends. I think it’s so interesting that we all like to create other art besides tangling and that is very INSPIRING ♥️

    May we continue to inspire each other!!

    • thank you for all the wonderful gifts you sent me 🙂 I do love them! I can’t make art that looks like what you do and that’s good. we all have our own thing and that benefits each of us. love you!

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