wishing for spring

I always find myself wishing for spring this time of year. Even more so this year. Once the brutal cold let up a little, the snow started in. Yesterday we had ice and snow, today it’s supposed to be 54 degrees and we have a blizzard watch for Thursday. UGH!

On to more pleasant things….I’m working on the tutorial for “flow beads”, which will be available to the Color.Creativity.Design members on March 1st and available for individual purchase on March 8th.

flow beads examples:
flow beads example

flow beads example two


I’ve made some progress on my project list. The bedroom is mostly painted. Still have the backs of a couple doors and doorways to finish, but far enough along to start moving some things upstairs, like the bed. Also finished my warm and snuggly afghan for the bed…


With below zero temps and 50 mph winds last night, I was very happy that we had gotten moved upstairs where it’s much warmer. We haven’t had much snow this winter, but the cold and wind has been brutal. This news story about the wind snapping off large tree branches that hit a car driving down the street last night was only a few a blocks away from my house.

I did dig out the polymer clay last week. My son and I made a volcano for his science project.

This week, I’m finishing up the color palette with polymer clay color recipes for the Color.Creativity.Design members and working on the second issue of Dress it Up! Magazine. Also have a high school orientation/registration meeting Tuesday evening for the kiddo (hard to believe my baby will be in high school) and he’s got Job Shadow Day Friday, so it should be an interesting week.

never enough time

It seems like there is never enough time to do all the things I want to do. Last fall, we bought a cute little vintage camper that we want to remodel. We didn’t get very far with it before the weather turned cold, but I had bought some fabric, thinking this winter when there’s not so much going on that I would get the curtains made, cushions re-covered and an awning made. I also wanted to paint and put new flooring in the kitchen.

Well, our middle child moved out and the youngest wanted his old room. After cleaning out and boxing up what the oldest son didn’t take with him, we got the youngest moved to the other bedroom. So, now we are painting the youngest kid’s old bedroom with plans to move our bedroom back upstairs.

Painting in progress.

If the colors look somewhat familiar, it’s because they go with the afghan from this color palette. The photos were taken in different lighting….they are much closer in person.
warm color palette

I still have another coat to paint, then the process of moving furniture upstairs. Not looking forward to that part. There’s a small room attached to that one, that I want to turn into a walk-in closet and the upstairs bathroom needs remodeled. It’s looking like Spring or Summer before I actually get to the original projects I wanted to do this winter. The good news is, once we get moved upstairs, our old bedroom is going to be my new bigger studio, which I’m very much looking forward to.

All of these home projects have kept me from having any time to create. However, I have been thinking about making something similar to the raised flower designs of the polymer clay pendants below, but on a larger scale to hang on the wall of our bedroom.

What projects do you have going on?

Deal-A-Muse sale extended

I’ve extended the $5 sale on the Deal-A-Muse card set through January 31, 2014. I am surprised that more people haven’t taken advantage of this great deal.

How many times have you sat down to make something and have no idea what to make? You waste your precious creative time sitting, thinking, stalling…

Maybe you want to push yourself to think outside the box.

Here’s how Deal-A-Muse can help you.

Each card has a front and back. This is so that you can randomly chose a category without seeing what it is. For example, If you were to chose a “techniques” card, you wouldn’t know what technique you were getting until you turn the card over and see that it is “mokume gane”. You would then make something using the mokume gane technique.
deal-a-muse techniques

Let’s get a bit more creative. You could randomly choose a “techniques” card and a “color palette” card. Let’s say you end up with the “mokume gane” card and the color palette card below. Then you would make something using the mokume gane technique with this color palette.

Maybe you want more of a challenge. Add a “shapes and patterns” card to the other two cards, like the one below. Then you would make something using the mokume gane technique and colors from the color palette card and incorporate polka dots into the mix.

Want more of a challenge? Choose two different technique cards and see how you can combine them into one piece of art work. Or choose several cards and see what you can come up with.

There are 60 cards with thousands of possible combinations!

Don’t work with polymer clay? No problem, just add the techniques for your medium.

You can find the printable Deal-A-Muse cards here or in my Etsy shop.

new year

I hope your new year is off to great start. Don’t you just love a new year? Full of promise and possibilities. A fresh start.

I thought we would start the new off right here at Crafts by Chris with a shiny new product. ;)


Adventures in Creativity


Deal-A-Muse is a pdf file that contains a set of printable cards (set #1 contains 60 cards), which are divided into five categories: color palettes, textures, shapes and patterns, techniques and miscellaneous. Also included is a template to create a storage box for your cards. While the technique cards were created for polymer clay artists, you could easily substitute techniques that apply to your artistic medium of choice.

To read more about Deal-A-Muse and to purchase follow this link. And, of course, it’s also available in my Etsy shop.

Deal-A-Muse set #1

Adventures in Creativity


Sarcophagus known as the “Muses Sarcophagus”, representing the nine Muses and their attributes. Marble, first half of the 2nd century AD, found by the Via Ostiense.

Whether your muse is on vacation or you want to push the boundaries of your medium, Deal-A-Muse cards are a fun way to get your creative juices flowing.

What is Deal-A-Muse and how does it work?

Deal-A-Muse is a pdf file that contains a set of printable cards (set #1 contains 60 cards), which are divided into five categories: color palettes, textures, shapes and patterns, techniques and miscellaneous. Also included is a template to create a storage box for your cards. While the technique cards were created for polymer clay artists, you could easily substitute techniques that apply to your artistic medium of choice.


How to use the cards:
1. Deal yourself one card from any category and create something inspired by that card.
2. Deal yourself two or more cards, each from a different category and see what you can come up with. For example, a color palettes card and a techniques card, or a shapes and patterns card and a textures card.
3. Deal yourself two or more cards from the same category. For example, two techniques cards. Think of how you could combine two different techniques in the same piece of art work.

60 cards with thousands of possible combinations to spark your creativity!

Our Color.Creativity.Design members have been collecting these same cards over the past several months.

“Love, love love, Deal-A-Muse!!!!!” ~ Carole

“I love the Deal-A-Muse. It will help me out of my block of creativity.” ~ Valerie

Copyright Crafts by Chris 2013

Price: $10.00 On Sale for only $5!
Add to Cart

end of the year

The end of the year can be a very hectic time. I know it is for us. Christmas, New Year’s and then throw in some birthdays and it’s one event after another. No matter how busy it is, I try to take a little time to reflect on the past year.

I can’t look back without thinking about how very grateful I am for my wonderful customers. Your comments and emails truly warm my heart and make me smile on a regular basis. When life gets crazy and I’m struggling to keep up or just having a bad day, I receive a message from someone that reminds me why I do what I do, like this email from Carole…

I thought you might like to hear this story.

As I live in the Caribbean it is very difficult for me to get clay down here. Because of that I use Kato as I can get the big blocks and mix my own colours. Your recipe cards have been very helpful for me and I have them made up with the samples organized by colour families.

A friends daughter is taking lessons from me. We alternate a sewing project with a polymer clay project. From the very first clay project I have shown her how to mix colours using your recipes. This past weekend we started on our largest one to date. She had a sketch of the general idea and picked the colours that she wants to use. Once we were decided on the project she asked “Can I have the cards so I can find my colours please”. She then matched the recipe to the colour she wanted, and got to work mixing. I was happy to see that at 9 years old she was not limited by the few colours she had in front of her, but looked upon them as a jumping off point. She is not intimated by the fact that she has to create her own colours, in fact she thoroughly enjoys the process.

I was mixing colours before I found your recipes, but having them on hand makes it so much easier. I am much better at being able to figure out what I need to put together in order to create a particular colour now because of what I have learnt from you.

Thank you, and I look forward to the next set of Kato colour recipes!

..or this message from Sharon.

I just want to say thank you for these. I have been working with polymer clay for 20 some years…but the one thing i HATE is trying to mix my colors. I am terrible at it. especially sage green!!! lol.

And pinks believe it or not….my shades of pink are never what i want. The first one of these i did turned out exactly as I wanted. I am so happy i found this. Honestly i would have never thought to look for a clay recipe book , i fell across it accidentally. But…..i love them….will get more. thank you so much!

A heartfelt, “Thank You!” to each and everyone of you.

I wish you peace, love and joy for the coming year. Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!