C2E2 Artist Alley Round Up: Part 2

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

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This post comes bearing the gift of more artists to drool over! This collection is a bit more ecclectic than the last one, but the artists are still every bit as talented. If any of them catch your eye, make sure to click the link and check out all of their work!

The work of Dailen Ogden is basically the epitome of "urban fantasy," and I am so into that. The line work is clean, leaving you free to notice all of the details. And the details are certainly worth noticing. 


I walked by the table of Jellykoe about 5 times, and every time I couldn't take my eyes off their plushies. They were weird and kind of gross and very colorful, so basically everything I like. I couldn't afford some of their stuffed goodness, but I could afford a comic, and on the last night I gave in and got one.


The work of Jusscope is one part eye catching, one part super complicated, and a dollop of vintage. With a lot of very professional fan art for some of my favorite titles, I had to share. These are the kinds of things you want hanging on your wall.


Last up is Gillian Newland. So often you find fan art that is cartoony. Lovely, but not something you'd hang on the walls in, let's say, your fancy dining room. Gillian's work is something you'd gladly hang on your walls. In a golden frame. Even if it is from Spirited Away. Yeah, it's that lovely.


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DIY: Floral Place Cards

Saturday, March 26, 2016

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Okay, this is a super easy and super cheap (if you shop at the right places) craft to do to make your dinner party just a bit fancier. And after your party is done, guests can take home this little arrangement and use it a cute decoration!


(I got most of these things from the dollar store, 
so in the end this craft costs about $10.)

fake flowers
floral foam
paper (I used watercolor paper)
wire cutters (optional)

1. Cut your flowers, leaving about 1 inch of stem. (If you're going to use scissors, make sure it's an old pair.) If you're lucky enough to have wire cutters, I suggest using them. Don't throw away the leftover leaves! You'll need them to fill out your arrangement.

2. Measure your floral foam. (Side note: the foam is messy. Make sure to work somewhere that's easy to clean!) Cut the paper so it will be about half an inch taller than your foam. It's easiest if you can cut one long strip. Use a pencil to mark where the edges will end, and fold the paper into a frame, making sure to overlap on one side.

3. Wrap the paper "frame" around your foam, as tight as you can. I used clear tape on the outside to fasten the paper. It's not very elegant, but trying to tape inside while the foam block is in there is super annoying.

4. Pick your flowers and start poking them into the foam! I used a large flower placed to the side to take up most of the arrangement, making it a focal point. Then I placed leaves and the small green flowers to fill up the extra space.

5. Cut a square card, write the name, and set it into the arrangement. And you're done! Simple, right?

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C2E2 Artist Alley Round Up: Part 1

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

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I found so many amazing artists at C2E2 that there's no way I'd be able to fit them all into one post, so I've decided to do a mini series! Today I'm showing you guys four artists with a beautiful, flowing style that features soft line work with bright pops of color. The pieces all work well together, but every artist defiantly has their own style!

First up is Gawki, who is a concept artists and illustrator. I love the use of color and the fantastical style!

Next is Newsha Ghasemi, who does a little bit of everything. I've seen a lot of Art Nouveau inspired work, but these take the cake. The details are gorgeous, and if you put this work next to a Mucha you'd see little difference.

Another artist who's booth kept enticing me was Kiki Jenkins. The soft lines, bright colors, and beautiful portrait subjects made me want to own everything on display.

The last artist I'm featuring is a little different, with work that is based in a watercolor look, as opposed to digital. Kelly McKernan creates lovely pieces featuring mostly female subjects. She uses unique techniques to give her work striking textures. And the way she portrays hair takes my breath away. (Warning: her gallery is lovely, and in no way crude, but it is NSFW)
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Teen Tech Week

Sunday, March 6, 2016

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Every year libraries across the US celebrate a little thing we like to call Teen Tech Week. According to the official website"Teen Tech Week is when libraries make the time to showcase all of the great digital resources and services that are available to help teens succeed in school and prepare for college and 21st century careers." It's a great week to show teens that libraries are about so much more than just books.

In honor of this week, I wanted to share a few ideas for Teen Tech Week (or just any person looking to engage teens in tech-y, hands on, "cool" learning experiences) that I've found while I was gathering ideas for what to do for our week. I'll also share some of the fun displays we have put together, and I might even have a freebie printable at the end!

Love this awesome Post-It art from the blog LibrErin.

This idea for a charging station from the blog The True Adventures of a High School Librarian is brilliant!

This pin from Lisle Library District inspired me to host our own "old tech" guessing game. I even dusted off the very machine they used for their game! Do you know what it is? (Hint... it's not a trash compactor.)

While we are on the subject of old tech, this "Retro Tech" display is too cute.

I'm into this tutorial for making jewelry out of old computer parts. Recycling AND crafting? Perfect!

This simple but practical Wool Felt Cell Phone Sleeves tutorial from Poppytalk could easily be hand sewn. It's a cute and affordable craft with some life skills built in!

This projector made with a smart phone from Scientifical Hampster is awesome! It would be so handy in a dorm room.

If your readers aren't quite sure what they should dig into next, they could start with "Which YA book should you read based on your favorite emoji?" from Buzzfeed. Or they could take a look at the HPLDreads tumblr, which is chalk full of book lists.

Speaking of emojis, I'm so into these #emojireads from Epic Reads. I printed a few out and plan to give them to the teens to see if the can figure out what book the emojis are trying to describe. Only one person on staff figured them all out!

For my own display I set out non-fiction books that focused on careers that had to do with technology. When I was in school I didn't even realized jobs in the art field like that existed, so I'm always trying to spread the word. I also included some great tech based YA fiction.

I had been throwing Post-It's at our teens all last week, so I was able to build up enough for a decent "art show." I plan on adding more as Teen Tech Week progressed. How cool would it be to cover a whole wall in little works of art? And (inspired by that pin I linked earlier) I created a little "retro tech" museum with a guessing game. I'm both intrigued and scared to find out what they think that floppy disk does. "Oh! You printed a 3-D version of the save icon!"

We've done "blind date with a book" displays before, but I wanted to upgrade it to fit the theme. With a few printed labels and some pictures of the main characters I was able to create a fake "tinder" profile for the books. The display hasn't been out for long, so I'm interested to see what the reaction will be!

And last but not least, I have an easy passive activity that pretty much any library can do. Inspired by this Instructables, I made a cute little coloring sheet of pixelated bows or bow ties for the teens to color, cut out, and wear.

I've uploaded the .pdf to my drive, so you can grab it and print it out yourself. Cut them into strips and put them next to some crayons and you've got yourself an easy and adorable (or manly!) activity!

Pixel Bow Ties Download

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Wallpapers: Spring Wreaths

Friday, March 4, 2016

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Hello! I've thrown together some cute little spring wallpapers for you to download. These are all very simple watercolor graphics with fun, bright colors and an overall floral theme. 
The images are all off of cards I recently created, which will eventually be for sale in my etsy shop!

Download these wallpapers HERE.

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DIY: Kitty Housewarming Gift

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

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Your first cat can be a weird pet to get. They don't come with the hassle that a puppy does, but that doesn't mean they don't have their own challenges. Often when people get their new kitties, they go shopping for the adorable pet accessories. The daybed (which they will only use when you aren't supplying a "book bed"), the cat tree (aka the couch's superhero), or the cute collar (which will only be worn when you remember to put it on, which in my case is never). What they forget to buy is the paper towels (for when the cat knocks off your glass while staring at you in a threatening way), the air freshener (because you can't always get to the litter box right away), the band-aids (they will always find a way to scratch you. always.), or the lint roller (sometimes you swear you could create another cat with the hair that attaches itself to your clothes).

This is where you, as a veteran cat owner,  (or someone who read this post) swoop in to save the day. I present: the Kitty Sanity Kit.
 I put this together for a friend when they got their first kitten. It's all practical items, and they weren't expensive. I figured it would make a cute and thoughtful gift that they could use, whether it be for the cat or in every day life.

Included in my kit:
paper towels
disinfectant wipes
band aids
air freshener
a lint roller

And I've also made a cute little tag, in case you don't feel like making your own. Just save the image below and print it on whatever you have handy!

Is there anything else you'd include in the kit? Leave your ideas below! 

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