Inspirational Quotes


Life isn't always easy, all of us can most likely vouch for that! There are times when one gets discouraged or overwhelmed and probably wonders, what is this all for!? Who am I and where am I going!? The anxiety of it all can be oppressive, to say the least... It can squash your creativity and park a gloomy cloud above your life. So, here's to eradicating those feelings, a little inspiration I received in an e-mail today from a close friend... We aren't too sure who said it, but it is beautiful and inspirational nonetheless! Words to live by... enjoy :)

Catherine
xoxo


To laugh is to risk appearing the fool
To weep is to risk appearing sentimental
To reach out for another is to risk involvement
To expose feelings is to risk exposing your true self
To play your ideas, your dreams before the crowd is to risk their loss
To love is to risk not being loved in return
To live is to risk dying
To hope is to risk despair
To try is to risk failure
But risk must be taken, because the greatest hazard in life is to risk nothing
The person who risks nothing, does nothing, has nothing and is nothing
He may avoid suffering and sorrow, but he simply cannot learn, feel, change, grow, love

Chained by his certitudes, he is a slave
He has forfeited freedom
Only a person who risks is free

[Unknown Author]

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(Photos via Vi.sualize.us)

Weekend Bargain Hunting at Goodwill

vintage, milk glass, thrifting, antique

I love bargain hunting! On the weekends I love to hop in the car, cruise around town soaking up the sun and hitting up our favorite thrift shops, Goodwill's, antique shops and of course, garage sales... I'm a Garage Sale Bandit, ha! This weekend (and last weekend too for that matter) were great bargain weekends, I found some wonderful little additions to my eclectic abode! 


Craigslist chair: 
my before and after transformation

vintage, chair, DIY, before and after, thrifting, antique

vintage, vintage chair, vintage table, thrifting, antique

I got this small wood vintage side table from the same person that sold me the chair.

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As for Goodwill...

Goodwill, thrifting

I couldn't resist!


On my way in...

vintage, thrifting, bench, stool

My treasure: a cute little foot stool for $5!
I'm gonna revamp it!

vintage, thrifting, bench, stool

Not too shabby!

Some more milk glass vases for my rapidly growing collection :D

vintage, owl, vintage owls, thrifting

Some of my little owls sitting on the antique shelf I picked up for $3...

decor, thrifting, vintage

I also picked up this brass treasure box from India, aqua blue glass pitcher, small blue vase AND the hand painted replica of Van Gogh's Cafe Terrace at Night hanging on the wall in the background.

ikat, teacup, thrifting, vintage, fine china

And, my favorite (and least expensive @ $1!) find of the entire weekend: a set of fine china teacups and their respective plates, made in Japan, with a beautiful Ikat-like flower print.  The end!

Contemplating time: Einstein's Dreams by Alan Lightman



Einstein's Dreams by Alan Lightman is one of the most compelling little books I have ever read. And when I say little, I am in no way diminishing the scope of its fictional creativity! On the contrary, it is a masterpiece... I like to think of it as a creative literary elaboration, or a literary analogy for Einstein's theories on time.

I was required to read this book for a Literary Analysis class in college that focused on fiction. Suffice it to say, the second I picked it up and began to read, I was forever mystified. Ever since I read Einstein's Dreams I have been telling everyone about it, it's just that interesting...

Through its detail this book communicates to the reader a realm of ideas that might otherwise seem difficult to understand. Each chapter is a different scenario, representing a different theory of what time is or could be, the way it is perceived by people and the different effects it has on the course of life. It's a short book, which makes it good for those of you anti-book or ADD readers, haha... And that's what I call it when you're too hyped up to focus on a book. Hell, it happens to me a lot and I love to read! I get stuck on a line, like a computer glitch, rereading it over and over for a couple seconds before I realize what I'm doing... ha =)

Anyway, this book is amazing, believe me, you will be telling all of your friends about it once you read it... It jump starts your imagination and piques your curiosity about the mystery of life. Go get it! On Half.com for a used alternative... which is perfectly fine folks, it's how I bought/buy all my college books! Also, more recently, all of the books I want at the book store... I just write down ISBNS, stifle my urges for instant gratification, come home and buy them on Half.com. I don't have the money to pay full price all the time, plus buying used is better anyway.

Here is an excerpt from the book, this is one chapter, thus one story/theory:

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"It is Tuesday morning in Berne. The thick-fingered baker on Marktgasse is shouting at a woman who has not paid her last bill, is flailing his arms while she quietly puts her new purchases of zwieback in her bag. Outside the baker's shop, a child is skating after a ball tossed from a first-floor window, the child's skates clicking on the stone street. On the east end of Marktgasse, where the street joins Kramgasse, a man and a woman are standing close in the shadow of an arcade. Two men are walking past with newspapers under their arms. Three hundred meters to the south, a warbler is flying lazily over the Aare.

The world stops.

The baker's mouth halts in mid-sentence. The child floats in mid-stride, the ball hangs in the air. The man and woman become statues under the arcade. The two men become statues, their conversation stopped as if the needle of the phonograph had been lifted. The bird freezes in flight, fixed like a stage prop suspended over the river.

A microsecond later, the world starts again.

The baker continues his harangue as if nothing had happened. So, too, the child races after the ball. The two men continue debating the rise in the beef market. The bird flaps its wings and continues its arc over the Aare.

Minutes later, the world stops again. Then starts again. Stops. Starts.

What world is this? In this world time is not continuous. In this world time is discontinuous. Time is a stretch of nerve fibers: seemingly continuous from a distance but disjointed close up, with microscopic gaps between fibers. Nervous action flows through one segment of time, abruptly stops, pauses, leaps through a vacuum, and resumes in the neighboring segment.

So tiny are the disconnections in time that a single second would have to be magnified and dissected into one thousand parts and each of those parts into one thousand parts before a single missing part of time could be spotted. So tiny are the disconnections in time that the gaps between segments are practically imperceptible. After each restart of time, the new world looks just like the old. The positions and motions of the clouds appear exactly the same, the trajectories of birds, the flow of conversations, thoughts.

The segments of time fit together almost perfectly, but not quite perfectly. On occasion, very slight displacements occur. For example, on this Tuesday in Berne, a young man and woman, in their late twenties, stand beneath a street lamp on Gerberngasse. They met one month ago. He loves her desperately, but he has already been crushed by a woman who left him without warning, and he is frightened of love. He must be sure with this woman. He studies her face, pleads silently for her true feelings, searches, for the smallest sign, the slightest movement of hr brow, the vaguest reddening of her cheeks, the moistness of her eyes.

In truth, she loves him back, but she cannot put her love in words. Instead, she smiles at him, unaware of her fear. As they stand beneath the street lamp, time stops and restarts. Afterwards, the tilt of their heads is precisely the same, the cycle of their heartbeats shows no alteration. But somewhere in the deep pools of the woman's mind, a dim thought has appeared that was not there before. The young woman reaches for this new thought, into her unconscious, and as she does so a gossamer vacancy crosses her smile. This slight hesitation would be invisible to any but to the closest scrutiny, yet the urgent young man has noticed it and taken it for a sign. He tells the young woman that he cannot see her again, returns to his small apartment on Zeughausgasse, decides to move to Zurich and work in his uncle's bank. The young woman walks slowly home from the lamppost on Gerberngasse and wonders why the young man did not love her."

- Einstein's Dreams by Alan Lightman

DIY Wine Cork Shadowbox Art and Crafts

art, crafts, DIY, shadowbox, wine cork crafts

Introducing, my DIY Wine Cork Shadowbox Art!  Have you ever made a DIY shadowbox?  Well, if you have you know there's something really fun about it, it takes you back to your childhood when you had to make a shadowbox project out of a shoe box.  Anything goes when you're making a shadowbox, I recommend using them to show off your prized collections, or in this case - the evidence of my love for wine.  I don't know about you, but I love to collect the corks of all the bottles I crack open, each one is unique - especially those with excessive wine stains and unique art/font.  I have another set of shadowboxes that I made long ago, they hold something much more special - my favorite European coins, ones that I collected during my trips through Europe.

So, how did I make these wine cork shadowboxes?  These are some simple dollar store shadowboxes with a glass front that I happened upon and decided to stuff with a few of the wine corks I've been storing hoarding.  I arranged the wine corks in different patterns and I decorated the edges of the frame with puffy paint for a little detail.  I dubbed them "Shadow Corks" and I've had them for years.  When I say anything goes I mean it, be creative and use anything and everything to put together a special window into what inspires you....

art, crafts, DIY, shadowbox, wine cork crafts

art, crafts, DIY, shadowbox, wine cork crafts


While I'm sharing DIY crafts, check out this broken $2 sterling silver dish I found at Goodwill!  I turned it into this little wall art masterpiece using some fringe, trim, a small mirror, a coin from my European travels, and a pearl and crystal pendant that I made from an 
old chandelier hanging at the bottom...

art, crafts, DIY, European coin, wall art

art, crafts, artwork, European coin, wall art, DIY

Here they are mounted together in one of my favorite gallery walls ever:
art, crafts, DIY, shadowbox, wine cork crafts
art, crafts, DIY, shadowbox, wine cork crafts

Last but not least, another little DIY craft: painted wooden electrical outlet covers.  I've painted many of these in the past, however they're installed all over my apartment, these two are more recent and the only ones I've photographed thus far:

DIY, crafts, art, painted, switch plate

(All images in this post are my personal photographs of my personal artwork. Please do not use any of these images without my written permission, contact me at InspireBohemia(at)gmail.com. Thank you!)

DIY Bohemian Shadowbox Art

DIY, shadowbox, art, crafts, coins, repurposed

I love shadowboxes, what's more - I love making my own shadowboxes from repurposed dollar store items and thrifted finds!  What is a shadowbox and what makes it so special?  A shadowbox is a time capsule with a cherished item or collection that one wishes to protect and display.  A shadowbox is a memory that one treasures and wishes to see on a daily basis because it makes them smile.

I don't know about you, but I have many treasured objects and trinkets from my travels and thrifting adventures that I wish to display in an enclosed, dust free environment that minimizes surface clutter and puts hoarding to good use (the story of my life). Enter the shadowbox, the perfect answer to getting your things off a tabletop and onto the wall! Anything goes with a shadowbox, in fact I recently made a trio of DIY Wine Cork Shadowboxes that display a few of the eclectic wine-stained corks I've amassed over the years. Making a shadowbox requires creativity and the ability to think outside the box - pun intended.

My shadowbox obsession began several years ago as I was roaming a non-chain dollar store and happened upon some wood shadow boxes that were painted a hot pink with a tacky fake daisy inside! Not dissuaded in the least, I knew I could transform them using simple acrylic and "puffy" paints, wall covering and leather samples hoarded over the course of my Interior Design career, and coins from my travels through Europe - from the pre-Euro days when each country had their own unique beautiful currency. Behold, the results:


DIY, shadowbox, art, crafts, coins, repurposed

DIY, shadowbox, art, crafts, coins, repurposed
DIY, shadowbox, art, crafts, coins, repurposed
Here are the completed shadowboxes on display, part of an eclectic bohemian gallery wall that I created in one of my past apartments:  


shadowbox, art, wall art, gallery wall, bohemian


shadowbox, art, wall art, gallery wall

The key to a captivating gallery wall is a variety of shapes, sizes, and objects.  I like to call it a bohemian gallery wall because it's artistic, informal, and unconventional:


shadowbox, art, DIY, gallery wall, bohemian


Break all the rules, hang everything your little heart desires...  I like to display all of my artistic creations, little trinkets like this brass hamsa hand, and my father's artwork (the man's face carved from wood):



gallery wall, art, shadowbox, bohemian


gallery wall, art, bohemian

DIY, shadowbox, art, crafts, coins, repurposed

(All images in this post are my personal photographs of my personal artwork.  Please do not use any of these images without my written permission, contact me at InspireBohemia(at)gmail.com.  Thank you!)

Art Prints and Renegade Craft Fair


So, here I am on a Saturday afternoon, jammin' to the Beatles on Pandora and surfing through an array of sites including my Gmail, Craigslist, eBay, Facebook and then my favorite blogs such as Design*Sponge, SFGirlByBay, and others... And suddenly I notice a banner on SFGirlByBay for a Renegade Craft Fair! To say the very least, I am pretty disappointed that this Renegade Craft Fair only takes place in Brooklyn, San Francisco, Los Angeles and Chicago. Bah! Get with the program Miami, sheesh.

Anyway, all the other fairs have passed this year except for the Chicago Fair, which takes place this upcoming weekend of September 12th & 13th at Wicker Park. Hmmm... It's so soon, but I would love to go... Not to mention, I have really been wanting to go to Chicago for a while. Artistic communities galore, so I hear. That's where I want to be! So, if you're in the Chicago area or would otherwise be able to attend, check this out...


Also take a look at the Renegade Handmade Store for online goodies =)

Catherine
xoxo

The store features handmade items from various artists, including these funky prints by Matte Stephens, a painter from Portland, Oregon:

"Happy Owl"
(print)
"Neato Owl"

For more Matte Stephens, check out the following:



Prints @ Poster Cabaret

Here are some additional Stephens' prints that I really like:

"Lord Admiral Hiratio"

"New Orleans"
(print)

"Dancing"
(original painting)

"Pologne Bird"

"The Duchess of Deauville"
(print)

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While on Etsy.com I came across some adorable print art by an artist named Laura George! Wow! I love her style, here, see for yourself....


"Beard of Love"

"Bonsai Portrait"

"Gibran Tree"

"Hookah Party"

"Lumilop Band 1"

"Lumilop Band 2"

"Sumo Clearing"

"Mind"




"Mushroom Friends"


"One-Two-Three Guitar"

"One-Two Hookah"

"Pantless"

"Skyfall" - green


Be sure to check out her entire shop, LauraGeorge @ Etsy.com

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And just to wrap up this overflow of images, here are a last few art prints I liked from Poster Cabaret...

"Recuerdos" by Alberto Cerriteno

"The Enamored Owl" by Alberto Cerriteno

"Peacock 2" by Nate Duval
Mogwai Concert Poster" by Doublenaut

"Road Trip" by Delicious Design League


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I'm on a roll today, so I'll most likely be posting more later on in the day... Right now I'm off to do my weekend bargain hunting, I can still hit up a Goodwill or two! Hahahaha... ;)

Have a great afternoon!

(All images in this post are individually cited and sourced from individual artists.)