I'm so happy to get this chance to blog! As of late I so rarely get my hands on enough time to actually put together words & pictures worthy of anyone's attention. But me and Aaron recently pulled a few all nighters, trying to catch up with back logged work, so I think I earned this chunk of time and I'm using it to catch up with you guys. I never ever see blogging as a chore...in fact, it's 180 degrees in the other direction. It's a GIFT. The act itself is a gift which, by way of reader response etc...then supplies delightful rewards exponentially. So in the name of the holiday weekend I'm presenting myself with the time it takes to tackle a tiny blog post. ( blame the alliteration on Aaron...he's been reading me some bits of his recent short stories and he uses alliteration as a crutch: a case of cupcakes can correct your dreariest downtrodden days.) I don't have much excitement to report because I've been living a 99% "indoor life"! ...which I plan on changing with the upcoming seasons...I know for certain that me and Aar are sufferers of the Emily Dickinson seasonal depression. So when Spring and Summer approach we brim with anticipatory joy. Come to think of it... maybe you were all better off that I blogged so very little over the winter...if I blogged more it may have read: all work and no play makes jenny a dull girl, all work and no play makes jenny a dull girl, all work and no play makes jenny a dull girl... You get the idea.
Happy Easter to all!!! And Passover! And for those not religiously inclined, Happy Springtime Sunday!!! Me and Aar will be spending the day at home working, which is fine with us. We seriously need to catch up on some old work and neither of our families do a big Easter. I guess you can say that we celebrate Easter mainly with our paint brushes. We LOVE Easter theme art! A couple weeks ago we reworked some of our existing paintings and made some fabulous matted prints and plaques. We actually took our paper mache bunny paintings from a few years ago and re-painted them... added new backgrounds, punched up the colors etc... And as much as I love doing all new paintings, I'm sometimes equally satisfied with re-working an older image. For instance, our Party Hats Cupcakes. This is one of our all time favorite paintings. We were even using it as our Everyday is a Holiday label on the backs of our plaques for a while. But some aspects of it were no longer working for us. We painted it many years ago and made some color choices we would not have made today. And overall, there were some technical aspects that could totally be improved upon. So we repainted it...almost every bit of it. Changed the polka dot colors, got rid of the purple party hat and made it yellow, changed the color of the plate from an almost Kelly green to a color closer to aqua, tamed down the pink glow around the cupcakes, punched up the white sprinkles. It was a rewarding little endeavor because we loved this painting but had some issues with it...it wasn't IDEAL. Now it's everything we want it to be and we instantly made it into an 8 x 10 matted print, an 8 x 10 wooden plaque, and a 5 x 7 mini plaque. And we did all this in the overnight hours...we steal a bit of time away from our real work in order to re-invigorate our creative souls. And it worked...we then filled up our shop with a whole bunch of new prints and plaques made from some of our own classic faves.
Ok, while I'm on the subject of Classic Faves. I really couldn't be more excited about these two new paintings!! They're titled: Vintage Bakery Board #1 and # 2. For years we've been painting big wooden bakery menu boards that look just like these and every time we offer them we get a whole bunch of orders and then we have to take them back out of the shop just so we don't bite off way more than we can chew. Too many times I've let orders build up to an unmanageable point. But it would be false and belittling to say that these new paintings are just my answer to a production problem. In truth, I've been dying to do pieces like this for years. I LOVE the blackboard look of these...the cute script...the individual cakes. Years and years ago we painted an actual chalkboard with a dozen different handpainted cake and cupcake images with the names handpainted in white script below each image. The instant I showed it online I was flooded with requests to paint custom versions. We simply could not do it. It was one of those projects we chipped away at for a while knowing that it would be a piece we'd always have on our wall. We knew we'd never be able to offer a handpainted version for sale because: a. it would take ALL of our time...and b. it would cost the customer too much casharoni. So now we finally did it! These are the first two and more will certainly follow. We made sure to do them in the proper dimensions so that we could offer them in a variety of sizes and formats. I think my fave is the large matted print...11 x 14 image and fits a 16 x 20 frame. It's a piece that can be the focal point of a room. We also kept in mind that these would be stunning not just in the home, but in actual bakeries as well. The 8 x 10 print is fab too...I think this size lends itself to being paired up...one is vertical, one is horizontal ... one features cut cakes, the other has uncut cakes. And on wooden boards they're just too darn sweet...like little chunky slates! I'm thrilled about these!
And I love to tie in BLACK in our decor. We have tons of black at home. It's such a grounding, classic, tie-everything-together color. Oh, and speaking of black...it's our newest color for our Keep Calm and Have a Cupcake prints. Excellent response so far on the black...we debuted it a couple days ago and the comments and sales flowed in right away. Also, we now do the Keep Calm in Apple Green. The first one we did was a custom order and we liked it so much that we put it in the store. Now we can't believe we didn't do one in Apple Green right from the get go. I have to say, it was a hard color to photograph and get the color to show up accurately. I don't think these photos do it great justice. It's hard to describe a color...but the Apple Green is that classic color that you find a lot these days...not quite lime, not Kelly, not seafoam, not moss...I guess sorta Lily Pulitzer...sorta Kate Spade.
I think this would be a good spot to announce our SALE!! Because we're so excited about the new Bakery Board paintings we're having a storewide sale on all our stuff for sale online... Etsy, Ebay,Lollishops :
Buy One Item and get the 2nd Item Half Price!!! (2nd item is of equal or lesser value.)
AND ... All Easter Items are 30% off
The Sale is From Now Through Friday !!!
We kept the Easter stuff in the shops because we wanted to have this sale and also because we know that many of you guys are just like us and collect Easter stuff all year round!
So this is how the Sale works... shop as you normally would and we will refund the difference through paypal. We'll do the refunds right away, as soon as we're notified of your purchase...but if you don't get your refund within 24 hours then just email us and we'll get right to it!
So, above I mentioned that me and Aar recently pulled a couple all nighters. Sometimes all nighters are necessary to meet a deadline but I recommend that you should never get in the habit of it. Makes you feel kinda crummy and it's hard to get back on a proper schedule with the rest of the sane world! All nighters are especially bad when the weather is fabulous and sunny because noontime comes rolling around...the sun is blasting in your windows...neighborhood dogs stirring up a ruckus...and you're ready for bed!! Not Good. But you know what...we've been having the yuckiest weather here in Jersey...so the all nighters haven't felt so bad. I feel like we're saying "oh yeah Mother Nature?...this is the April Day that you're offering us? 45 degrees, wind, rain, dark gray clouds?....well guess what? I'm gonna sleep through it...you can't get me!"
But seriously....sometimes all nighters NEED to happen if you want to have new paintings to offer! ; ) So the other night we stayed up ALL NIGHT and we pulled off our two new Vintage Bakery Board paintings...and also packed up a big stack of boxes to be shipped in the morning. It was 7:00 am, we had a stack of boxes to ship and the post office was not yet open so we decided to go for a drive to get a bite to eat. Even though it was raining horribly and the sky looked more like 7 pm than 7am...it still felt good to get outside after working all night. We have amazing resources in very close proximity to where we live but we never get the chance to take advantage. Just five or six minutes away is the Ocean Grove Bake Shoppe, which has the most amazing cupcakes. Great Red Velvet, excellent classic buttercream, and now I have to say...some of the best carrot cake cupcakes ever! Sad to say, but good, real cakes and cupcakes are so very hard to find. So many "bakeries" use weird chemicals. They make cakes that are somehow non-perishable...frosting that would survive a nuclear holocaust. I just don't understand how they get away with it!! I know they do it to cut cost and to prolong shelf life...but seriously...that fake stuff is inedible! I can't stand it. Well Ocean Grove Bake Shoppe has none of that fake stuff. They are on of the rare places who use classic old fashioned recipes...much like Billy's and Magnolia in NYC. So anyway, feeling all fuzzy and hazy from our all nighter, Aaron got out of the car and when in OGBS to get us a box of sweets. When he's in there he see's a cake on a stand, with one slice missing, pale pink cake, creamy white frosting....It was a strawberry cake. Nobody has strawberry cakes on hand! So Aar had to get a slice...it's his second fave next to carrot cake. It was wonderful! We devoured it right in the front seat with a couple plastic forks...that's why you're not seeing a photograph of it!! So after that...since: "life's short, dessert first"...we then got fantastic bagels from the best bagel place. By this time the post office was open for business and we were able to ship our stack. We came home...full bellies, deliriously tired, and slept through a full day of rain!
A couple more things I wanted to mention before signing off. I recently went to Ikea and picked up this awesome desk for our PC. We previously had our PC on a big work desk that should really be used only as a big work desk. The computer was wasting valuable workspace. So one Sunday my little brother Walt came and picked me up while Aaron stayed home and manned the fort. We drove up to Ikea and grabbed this PERFECT desk. The color pink is perfect. It was cheap. I put it together all by myself, no problem. It's super sturdy. And it's got wheels...which I use often. I roll this desk all over the place. In fact, we roll the desk and PC over to our couch and watch movies on it. Netflix has a feature where you can watch movies instantly online...it's great! Anyway, I highly recommend this desk. Not a bad word to say about it.
Since it's Easter I wanted to showcase some Springy things from around our home! Above, I've already chronicled just how busy we've been...so obviously there hasn't been time for major Spring time decor...but I just wanted to put the spotlight on a few faves that make me smile every year and hopefully will do the same for you!
Well, it's once again super duper late and I've still got stuff to do. I'm so happy to have had the chance to blog and catch up. Thanks so much for stopping by again. And definitely be on the lookout for more new artwork! xoxo, Jenny