Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Wishing You All a Happy New Year in 2009!

I know it's a little early, but I just wanted to wish everyone a very blessed, prosperous, and safe 2009. This year has been so amazing in all aspects of my life and I am just so very excited to see what 2009 has in store for my family. Thank you, once again, to all of those that have supported me personally and in my business-I sincerely appreciate it and have been blessed to have you all in my life. For tonight, have fun, celebrate, but most of all, be careful. I will talk to you next year!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Here They are Again!

So, here they are in all their glory! I really like them a lot! Too bad they are for a friend of mine. I go over there a lot so I will still get to see them. Don Li-Leger is an amazing artist and so very inspiring. They are not exactly the same, though. (obviously I am not that good in the first place) I might have to make a smaller set on 6x6's or something for my kitchen under the cabinets, but above the counter, ya know, that random space. I have some vases from my other biz, Southern Living at HOME, that they would match with perfectly (I added a pic down below with my fave bowl!). I am trying to change over my kitchen anyhow. It is apples (and other fruits) galore and I really want a more basic theme. I will keep some of the items that have simple leaves and red, green, and dark yellow on them. I have my cushions covered with a nice pattern called Sonoma that I will definitely keep because I have dishes, cookie jar, recipe holder, etc to match. Sorry, I went off on a tangent. Well, I'm off to bed soon. Having family over tomorrow for Christmas Eve! Merry Christmas to all...and to all a good night!

Monday, December 22, 2008

My Art is Up in Homes! I Can't Believe it Sometimes!

So, I have been selling art for a little over a year now; mostly to family and close friends. I also will make a piece of art to give as a gift from time to time as well. The other day, I was talking to a friend that I hadn't seen in a while and as we were talking, it dawned on me...I have art in 5 states in the US and in Finland! I am, by far, still a very new artist who learns something new everyday about how to make my pieces better, but that just made me feel so blessed. God has truly given me a talent that I want to use to glorify Him, ya know? Anyhow, my ranting is all because another friend from post Finally Finished and Just in Time just sent me some pictures of paintings I did for her children. The second two pictures are of the bedding; the paintings are on the opposite wall from their bunk beds. Thanks Jenny!

Update on Paintings Inspired by Don Li-Leger

So, I got to work on these babies a little more last night and again some today and here is what they are looking like as of now...

PLENTY still needs to be done to them to give them some additional detail, depth, texture, etc... which I plan to go work on them some more once they dry a little. So, what are you guys thinking? Like 'em, hate 'em, want 'em?

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Cool New Art Alert!

These are majorly in their preliminary stages, but I just HAD to show some pics because I am loving the 12x12 inch canvases with the 1.5 inch deep sides! I am also loving the colors! These pieces are inspired by Don Li-Leger's "Karma" (pictured to the right). They are going to be a similar color scheme and have the flowers, but not quite the same. I love Don Li-Leger's art so very much! It truly is inspiring! I'll have more pictures soon.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Ellie's Room

Here are a few pictures of the sweet nursery that I did this painting for...
I wish I had the original pictures she sent me before I did the painting. They showed the other side of the room with the crib, changing table, chair, etc... I thought I had them, but I could not find them in my files. Anyhow, you can get the idea of the colors above and below the chair rail and how adorable it is! Thanks, Bethany!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

In the Spirit of Christmas...

I just wanted to write a little bit about this year and how this Christmas is very different from any in the past. I have had a truly blessed year and I know that Christ is the reason for every wonderful blessing that has come my way. I know that probably sounds like a given, but this year it has been more evident than ever before. I have always considered myself a Christian, but when I became pregnant with Preston, I decided I wanted him to grow up knowing God intimately; I didn't really get that chance to when I was growing up. I lived in a home that believed in Christ, but we didn't go to church or pray together. I wanted that for Preston more than anything. We started going to World Outreach Church in Murfreesboro, TN and my life has changed drastically. The first year, I felt a difference inside, but when I began getting involved in Children's Ministry and getting to know more people there, my spirit began to grow in the most wonderful way. I really started putting faith in Christ to do everything in my life and looked to Him for guidance in most every decision. This year I have been able to stay home with Preston while watching and sharing the love of Christ with other children. My art business has grown from nothing to having several customers and friends. Southern Living at HOME has continued to be a blessing this year. My beautiful son just had his 18 month appointment and is just so happy and healthy. Things are so different this Christmas season. I really feel that I know what Christmas is about this time around and I will be twenty-nine tomorrow! I am glad in this 29th year of Christmas that I can celebrate what the birth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, really means. It means His life was lived and then given for us to be liberated from entrapment by the devil. In Him, we can have a life of true joy here on earth despite all the turmoil. Thank you Christ for giving me such a wonderful life here on earth and for all eternity. Thank you all for supporting and encouraging me this year. I hope you all have a wonderful and meaningful Christmas and a very prosperous and peaceful New Year in 2009.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Paintings on are Their Way...Today!

Jess, Sara, Marilyn, and Teri-thank you all so very much for your kind words of support and encouragment! Also, I so appreciate your patience. Here are your paintings and THANK YOU's all wrapped up and ready to go. I am going out to the post office in about an hour and they will be on their ways to you all. Please let me know when you receive them and send me some pictures of them when you get them up please!!!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Gabrielle is Golden!

I am almost done with this painting! I can't believe it! I designed it and almost finished it in one day. The "Tiny" Line has been a pretty big hit and I like it because it's like instant gratification. I do love the colors (the color that looks orange in the picture is actually mustard) in this bedding and this is actually a 6x6x1.5 inch linen canvas, so it was so fun to work with. Teri is purchasing this for a friend and says she wants it to be a memento that will be timeless. So, we thought about doing the Curlz font, but after some discussion, we decided this font would probably grow up with her better; it is called Brio. I went with the diagonal lettering so that it can be hung/sat horizontally or diagonally. I also decided just random dots on the front and then actual designs from the bedding on the sides, so when she inevitably changes her room, maybe it can be incorporated. So, tell me what you guys think...

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

I'm Back...I was Never Really Gone (or all here for that matter)...

Before I go into my rambling, I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving; we sure did! Thank the Lord for that very special day to give thanks to Him and all of our loved ones!

I knew it had been a little while since I posted, but I went to a blogger friend's blog and saw that it had been two weeks since I posted on the "blogs she follows" I knew I had to get going. (Yay, a few people follow my blog-thanks!) So, I actually have several things to post about, so here we go...

First, I would like to say CONGRATS to my very best friend and her husband on the birth of their baby girl, Jayla. Remember these paintings...they were for her nursery and she is finally here! She is beautiful and healthy-thank God! He is amazing!

Second, another blog friend, Bethany, was also waiting on her little neice, Ellie, and she finally arrived! Congrats to her and her family. Here was her painting...

They have both promised pictures of the nurseries with the paintings for me to post, so keep an eye out for those. I know they are both super busy right now, so I am being patient.

Third, I am finishing up all the paintings for the 3 winners of giveaways here recently-the 2 here on my blog and the one at You all have seen "Chloe" which has been at a few expos here lately and will be off to her owner this week. Here is the preliminary picture for Marilyn in Texas. The painting for Sara in Finland is still under design and cannot be seen at this point-maybe never! LOL!

Last, I am so excited!!! I had another order from someone that just happened upon my blog! I should have some pictures up of "Gabrielle" soon. We are doing it on a 6x6 inch canvas to match this a very classy "Circles" bedding they found at Target. Circles and polka dots are popular right now; good thing I am getting a lot of practice! Thanks, Teri, you have been such a pleasure to work with!

Ok, I know that was alot to take in, so I'll quit for now, but I'll be back soon!

Friday, November 14, 2008

"Inspired to Give-a-way WINNERS!!!

I officially ended the giveaway at 12 noon central time and there were 117 comments! I used the random number generator at and the winner of the $50 piece of art is Marilyn Moseley in Texas and the winner of the $30 piece of art is Sara Palmetia all the way in Helsinki, Finland. I will be emailing them today. I appreciate all those that left kind comments and stopped by to check out my blog-THANK YOU ALL! I mentioned this in the post yesterday, but I will say it again. As a thank you, if you left a comment in the Inspired to Give-a-way post, you are eligible for a 15% discount on orders placed before December 15th (before shipping is added).

I'm the Queen of Hearts...or at least I feel like it!

I have drawn sooooo many hearts this week...I feel like a teenager again. I think that is when I drew the most hearts. Here are pictures of the sides of Chloe's painting with the "skewed hearts with tails" that I mentioned previously. I hope it doesn't make the painting look too busy, but I actually like the little hearts. They are two colors-the dark and light pink that is on the front in the polka-dots, although it is hard to tell in the picture. This one still needs some cleaning up around the edges of the letters and circles, a few more coats on the colors, varnished, and then off to Jess and Chloe! I hope they like it! I did show Jess and in her words she said she, "loves loves loves it!" That makes me so happy when people say that because you just want it to be exactly what they hoped for, ya know?!

By the way, the Giveaway is later today!!!!!! I am so excited!!!!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Give-a-Way Tomorrow!

Ok, so here are the details for tomorrow's drawing. I am going to generate a random number that will coordinate with the comment numbers on the post labeled "Inspired to Giveaway" tomorrow at roughly 12 noon Central time. I will post the winner and email that person if they left me an address. If we get to 100 comments by tomorrow at the time of the drawing, I will chose 2 numbers and giveaway 2 pieces of art, although the 2nd number will get a piece valued at $30. Now, not everyone left me their email address in their comment, so if I cannot reach the person(s) within a week, I will draw another name next Friday at noon and so on and so forth (I love that little phrase, but have never used it). Again, if the person wants something that would be more than the value of the painting they win, they can apply the $50 or $30, respectively, to the larger piece or it can be given as a gift and I will give you a gift card.

These are examples of the $50 and $30 pieces of art. See pricing guide down the left side of the blog for details on sizes of canvas.

***Here's a little something I have added since not everyone can win. If you have left/leave a comment on that post before the end of the giveaway tomorrow, whether you win or not, you are eligible for a discount on orders placed before December 15th. The discount is 15% off your order before shipping. This will not apply to Gift Certificates, but refer to the post about gift certificates for a deal on those.***

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

I Just LOVE the Name Chloe!

This is the piece I am doing for the winner I referred to in the previous post "Updates on Giveaways Elsewhere." Silverhartgirl a.k.a Jess has a daughter, Chloe, that is 10 years old and we are designing the 5x5x1 inch painting for her. They looked at my blog together and they both liked the pink and brown polka dots, but like most 10 year old girls, Chloe loves hearts and "draws them on everything." So, it took me about a week to decide how to incorporate the two although they gave me pretty much free reign. I was going to do hearts on the front, but I figured she may grow out of those in a few years and may still like polka dots. So, I am doing the polka dots on the front and some cute, kind of swirly hearts along the great 1 inch sides. The hearts I have chosen are kind of skewed a little and then have a "tail" that circles around, kind of like a kite. Yeah, I know, that sounds a little crazy, but it will be cute when it is finished. So, here is what I have done so far. I really like that she can hang it diagonally or horizontally or sit it either way as well, but she will need a little plate holder or something to sit it diagonally. What are you guys thinking about this?

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Update on Give-a-ways Elsewhere...

So, I mentioned that I was going to be giving away a 5x5x1 inch painting over at this week....well, it happened back on Monday. Sorry for not telling you all beforehand, but it did get some pretty good response and the winner was silverhartgirl. Congrats to her! The good news is, I plan to do another giveaway over there in a few weeks and I'll give you all a better heads-up so you can go participate. Even before then, go over and check out Liz's blog because she really does give something away everyday and everyone has a good chance at winning!

Second, I mentioned how I am a major TipJunkie and I am participating in Laurie's Mom-preneur Shop-a-Thon (follow the link to the upper left of my blog; I'm under "Art Prints"). She is also hosting several contests/giveaways over the next few months and has asked for some sponsors. I have offered a painting so keep checking over there for that and to win some other great stuff! She is having 4 wonderful opportunities between now and January. Remember to support mom-preneurs and also get to shop from home. Also, alot of the mom-merchants are offering a discount to Tip Junkies as well, so keep an eye open for that!

Monday, November 3, 2008

It's Official...I'm a Mom-preneur!

Laurie, over at Tip Junkie, had such a great response to her Mom-preneur Shop-A-Thon that she had to totally re-design her shopping area! I am now offically a part of the shop-a-thon, so go check it out and support mom-preneurs everywhere. I am under "Art Prints". Click on the link at the top of my blog on the left.

Friday, October 31, 2008

I Love These Little Canvases!

This is a sample painting of a 5x5x1 canvas size that I am considering beginning to offer. This is actually a sample for a give-a-way that I will be offering over at (should be sometime next week). I have to admit, though, I was too scared to try to paint on this size canvas until I got the courage from a fellow artist, Kim Tate-Wheeler (Thanks, Kim!). I have wanted to try to paint on a smaller size for a long time, but the canvases, ironically, are way more expensive than the medium and larger-sized ones! And since I mess up quite a bit, I have stuck to the larger ones. This one, in particular, is to match my son's Pooh bedding. "Pooh" has been my nickname from my "dad" since I was a kid, so when we found out we were having a baby, I liked the idea of having it for the room. We were not going to find out what were having, but as that week approached, I gave in!!! I had already decided to go with Pooh since it was kind of neutral, but after seeing all the other cute beddings for boys, I'm wishing I had waited to decide instead of being so hasty! I think 3 would be cute for initals and I could make a deal on a set, but one single one would actually have to be $25 just to break even on them! Anyhow, tell me what you think and look for the giveaway over there next week!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

"E" is Off to Her New Home!

Here is the "E" for my new friend, Bethany, in GA. I hope her little sis and her niece, due later this year/early next year, love it!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

LeeLou's Launch Party

My new blog friend, LeeLou, that I made the "Yeehaw" painting for is having a launch party over at her blog. Just follow the link by clicking on the enclosed button and go over and leave a comment to be entered for some really GREAT prizes! She is the one I got my FREE, yes FREE blog design from. She also does custom blog designs and has some new hook-ups on digital scrapbooking. I need to get into that because I am terrible about keeping up on Preston's 5 books! I need to just condense it all into ONE and do it here on the computer where I spend a lot of time anyways! She says there is a new program that makes it fun and quick! So go check it out and get entered for some great stuff! Thanks again LeeLou!


Monday, October 27, 2008

Ellie and Kaysie turn 1...and love their paintings!

I just HAD to add these two pictures...Kaysie looks happy with her painting and Ellie...not so much! Maybe she is crying because they were about to take it away from her! Yeah, yeah, that's it! LOL! They are about to get a room of their own; their mom tells me they are about to turn the garage into a room for them. So maybe these might match?? We'll see!

Friday, October 24, 2008

Gift Certificates Now Available!

After thinking about the last few posts, I figured introducing the availability of Gift Certificates would be appropriate. A gift certificate from Initial Designs is unique and thoughtful yet the person can still choose exactly what they want. You can order and pay online without stepping out the door and I will send the gift certificate to you or directly to your loved one. I know all too well that with the economy being in a crunch that everyone is trying to shop early while still trying to find special and affordable gifts. A custom, hand-painted piece of letter/name art is perfect for anyone for any occasion; birthday, baby shower, or even a wedding. I can do almost anything to match any style, decor, or bedding. Gift certificates are available starting at $20 and going up increments of $5. I am personally designing the gift certificates and will post a picture soon. Call me for details about a discount for gift certificate purchases-I can explain it better in person.

Inspired to Give-a-way!

THIS GIVEAWAY HAS ENDED.......Sorry. Sign up to receive an email when I post to be alerted of other giveaways in the future!

After "Becoming a Tip Junkie" and reading all around Laurie's blog, I was feeling inspired to do a give-a-way! I really just enjoy painting and getting some practice, so if figured what other way to do that besides give away a painting. So, here's the deal...since I only have a few readers, I am going to leave the give-a-way open for 3 weeks, until Friday, November 14th. The random winner will be entitled to a custom, handmade piece of name art of their choice valued up to $50. This really would include a painting from almost any of my lines, it would just limit the size of the canvas. Also, the "certificate" can be given as a gift and if a larger piece of art is desired, the $50 can be applied to that piece of art. So, leave a comment to be entered and tell a friend to tell a friend! Who knows, I may even pick 2 numbers. Maybe my 2 current readers will win! Hehe he he he... :)

This really is to say thanks for your support of my business and to celebrate the ONE YEAR anniversary of Initial Designs! I started this business on October 10th, 2007! (So, I'm about 2 weeks late-go figure!)

**Don't forget to leave me your email address in the comment so if you win I can contact you**

Support Mom-preneurs this Holiday Season!

What is a mom-preneur you ask? Well, click on the enclosed link button to see an enormous list of mom-preneurs and you'll get the idea! Well, okay, I'll go ahead and explain...a mom-preneur is a mother who helps support their family by making handmade items. Laurie over at Tip Junkie has compiled a great list of women in blog land who are mom-preneurs and is encouraging the support of these women during holiday shopping. I think it is a great idea and have emailed Laurie to try to get on the list. When you are shopping for Christmas or really for any gift, don't you always want to find something great that is unique yet affordable? The answer is HANDMADE!!!! I love to be able to paint art for children's rooms and other items to assist in my staying at home with Preston. It's like the perfect combination-doing what you love to stay with the one you love most! So, go out there and support these women and, in turn, help support their families!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

New Pics!

Here is the painting from the last post-it is not quite finished, but you can get the idea from this one. The dots that touch the edges wrap around-that is what the 2nd two pictures are... I need to do a few more coats on the "E" and then clean it up around the edges and then off to be varnished!

Also, here is a similar painting for my niece, Kaysie-actually twin nieces, Kaysie and Ellie-the "E" with the pink and brown polka dots will be for her. I've got to do the same steps as above to finish this one up, but this is almost what it will look like; I think I will extend the front of the bottom of the "K" a little bit. Their birthday is this weekend on Saturday-they turn the big ONE! They are adorable! I added a pic of one of them (they are identical and I didn't have one of the other one by herself).