Thursday, October 1, 2015

See you soon!

And as if by magic the crispness of Michigan Fall weather has given us a big hug! Ghoultide Gathering is the very largest show in the Midwest for fine Halloween art and it's this Saturday!  It's such a lovely time when all of the artists are united once again, like a family reunion of sorts.  The show participants are hand selected and when you see everyone's work coming together it is truly a curated art show, and a feast for the eyes. 

Most of my work is packed and ready to go. We will pick up our U-haul soon and begin the logistical procession that is packing and heading towards Chelsea, MI. 

For those of you who are unable to attend, I will be having a web show here on my blog soon after I return from the show :)

See you soon!

Friday, September 18, 2015

timey wimey

it was horribly early!!

I needed time away, not from you... glorious lover of Prim Pumpkin, but from the feeling that I had to post something. I don't always just want to show you my new works.  I want to tell you about the process, the people who inspire me, my husband, my little children, school, and times when I am cross, things that frustrate me and the delights....

 I think about so many things to tell you, art related and then not so much art related that I have a hard time starting again.  My son lost two teeth in one week, he has grown so much this year. He has lost his little boy look and he is easing into a new phase.  My wild boy! My little girl can say her ABC's and recite great big gobs of greasy, grimy gofer guts... She's all of two and fierce as wild fire. 

I have lots to tell you dear friends! :)

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Why do you do it like you do it?

I was asked yesterday why I create in colors that are different than the traditional orange and black.   It's such a long answer.... But I told the lady who was asking that my color palette is different because I choose them based on what gives me bliss.  

“Follow your bliss and don’t be afraid, and doors will open where you didn’t know they were going to be.” - Joseph Campbell

My work is not scary or startling, it's more whimsical. To me, whimsical means magical. I believe that art takes on life from it's surroundings. My home studio is a small trove of fabric and color and pretty much the perfect place to begin a prim pumpkin. If you were to look into my studio you would see things that bring me joy all over the place.   With this much inspiration it's hard not to honor my style...

I will never forget my delight when I painted my very first pink pumpkin. She was a rebel, I mixed shades of off white and pink and mottled her tones to perfection... but then, she sat in my studio and it was hard for her to find a home. I began to doubt my color choice... that had given me so much joy.    

I knew that she was someplace in between what my collectors were used to and what traditional Halloween collectors liked.   She moved me into creating from the soul (even more than I was before) and making art that was me. Me, in all of my wonky styled, mismatched color, one trip too many to the thrift shop glory.  My heart whispers love it when I honor them and create a doll that is my style,  my palette and my bliss.  And from this place of TRUE inspiration comes growth, a reach into the stars to pull down a little more magic.

So, there is no real short answer to the question about why I create in luscious, unpredictable colors....My color palette is the soundtrack to my life. Sit and listen if you want to.  

Friday, June 26, 2015


“The moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision which no man could have dreamed would have come his way. Whatever you can do, or dream you can do, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. Begin it now.” – Goethe

It is with boldness and magic that I introduce my latest doll, she is a witch from the Haunting Wilds line and as always a Prim Pumpkin original :)

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

stories ....

I have been making my Prim Pumpkins for 8 years now....  Long before I touched my first blob of clay or stitched my first bit of  muslin I had envisioned my whimsical pumpkins.   I knew that the curiosity of my work settled deeply with in the lure of one haunting evening.  Halloween for me is the jewel of Fall. The keeper of all things magical but would one holiday be enough to hold my work?  I wasn't sure.
When I think about my dolls, the stories don't end after Halloween.  They have roots. I might create a pumpkin who hides in the bushes and whacks the legs of misbehaving adults... or a pumpkin that bobbed for apples and trick or treated with the best of them and then the day after Halloween wilted into a sour squash!  The stories go on... they were deep in my soul shine and just like birthing a bebe, there comes a time when your soul has to open up and pour out something.  Something like exposing your roots....
Kettle's story
Sweetly standing on the edge of the human and fairy world was a pumpkin lady named Kettle. She wore her wanderer's head dress in hopes of attracting spiders with wispy, weaving legs.... Every now and again I see a peek of her pumpkin cuteness and I am reminded of my time with her as I stitched, she asked quietly for velvets and crinoline and when she received it she made it come alive ... not me

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Buttons and Claws

I read a quote the other day that really made me stop in my tracks. It is a gem by David Foster Wallace. It read, "Everything I've ever let go of has claw marks on it." Even now as I type the words to the page, I am struck by the gravity of the statement. From as far back as I can recall, I have held on a bit too tightly. I am not saying that I think this is a flaw in person or something to feel guilty about, it just simply is. In early relationships I defiantly left claw marks. When my grandmother died I went through the ceremonial "saying goodbye" but I never really have let her go.  I feel like I have been holding on so tightly for so long to the parts of her that I saw as great that those parts have graphed into my heart. 

I call myself  a sentimentalist and I guess that's a classy way of saying I have hard time of letting go.  It's so hard to think of the heartbreaking fact that my husband and children will never know my Grandma and what a character she was.  It's experiences like this that are deeply sewn into my heart. I feel like by the time I arrived, she was so tired from raising her own children and accepting mistakes and defeats of life that she reached into her apron pockets and  planted these exquisite little seeds of imagination, love and kindness into my soul and then spent the rest of her life watering those seeds. I wasn't the only one who received these gifts from her, my Mother and cousin, Charlotte, also claimed what was offered.

The sentimentalist in me came directly from her. I can look at a jar of buttons and think about the time we went to Chicago for the first time. I drove her big, gorgeous Cadillac and I was scared to death!  We made it to the hotel and talked to the concierge who was called Fritz. Fritz told us about a shop that sold nothing but buttons... floor to ceiling in tiny little compartments! The shop was just a cab ride away, but I had never taken a cab.  Grandma was more than game, so we decided to find the place! I had to hail the cab... I tried to recall how Meg Ryan did it in "You've Got Mail" but then I remembered that she walked most places... no help at all. I channeled my inner cab hailer and stepped my red Mary Jane shoe towards the curb, I stuck my hand up like I was the Queen of England and motioned with my finger to the cab... come here darling! Can you imagine??? A cab stopped and the driver jumped out and opened our door and off we went. I felt like we were going in circles and the cabbie was doing this to run the meter up, I was getting nervous with thoughts that Grandma and I were going to be sold into slavery by our cabbie never to be seen or heard from again... while my Grandma was talking to him about Moonshine and how her father had a still on a hill where he ran off a gallon or two.. wink , wink!! I was mortified. We reached the button shop and the cabbie parked and waited for us to shop and then he took us back to our hotel.  He told my Grandma that he never had met someone who had made him feel so comfortable.  He told us that most people either kept silent or tried painfully and awkwardly to converse about camels or the middle east which is where he was from originally.  I'll never forget that after we left the button shop, he asked about the shop and the buttons.  He told us that his grandmother was a seamstress in India.  My Grandma took out a button that she had just purchased and gave it to him.  He was so touched by her gesture that when we reached our hotel, he got out and gave her a hug.

From that moment, buttons have been etched into my memory as a kindness. A currency of sharing. A simple, yet useful thing like a button brought a wide eyed girl in a cab, a homesick cab driver and a not so traveled but ever so worldly woman into the same universe for just a moment.  I'll always have a hard time parting with a button.  You see, leaving claw marks can sometimes be the hearts way of holding so tightly that you are gleaning the essence of a memory. Not smothering or harming but curating a life.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Home Crafting *sorry about the profanity mom....

This is the look on my face when I  have pretty food, but I can't think of how to cook it!
This is my daughter, last Summer. 

Our Pumpkin cottage is filled with babies, art, and our treasures.... food, while very important to us, is not at the top of my priority list.  I see food as an art, I appreciate fine preparedness, I stand in awe at the mama that does it in gourmet fashion, I offer stomach growls of goodness to those that whip it up Pioneer Woman style.... But that's not me.  In the Summer when the market is in bloom with the bounty of it's gifts, I have been known to buy fruits and veggies just because I thought they were pretty.  A still life in the kitchen.  But then I get it home, wash it up and have a complete
 What the Fuck moment,
because I don't know WHAT to do with it all if it can't be consumed raw....
 The truth is... I don't really LIKE to cook.  I find the art of it a bit confusing. What can touch, what cannot, what has to thaw and for how long.....
What the hell is blanching...
why don't they just say boil the hell out of it until the skin falls off?

Cooking for much of my life has been intimidating.  And then like a knight on a barreling steed, came Pinterest into my life.  This is how my mind works, ART, Food, Clothing, Sassy quotes all right next to each other!

As a very visual person, the picture's are wonderful.  I began to rethink how HARD meal prep is, and last week I crafted 5 meals ahead of time and froze them. 

I found the easiest recipes here.  I tried the Baked Ziti, Slow Cooker Chili, and the Chicken Broccoli Alfredo. 
This is the look on my face when I realized what separated me from those who were rocking it...
This is my wee boy!

Art will still be more important than cooking, but now see that the only thing that separates me from the mama's I've admired is their preparedness and their home crafting skills.  Yes, I said home craft.  I have to think of it as a creative endeavor or my brain will not hold the information in! home crafting is a new muscle, and I am working it!!!!!!
This is the look on my husbands face when I told him all of our meals were done for the week!!!
This is my actual husband in an actual tin robot hat......
xxoo- From the girl who, at her home economics exam where parent came in to eat a meal that we prepared, forgot to turn on the oven and wondered why the fuck noodles take so long to cook!!!!!