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Posts from the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Scents of Spring at Macy’s Flower Show in Chicago

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Need a delightful break from the grey weather? The sights and scents of the Macy’s Flower Show in Chicago will lift you from the doldrums and tickle your fancy! Located on the 9th floor of their State Street store, children and adults alike will enjoy the painted elephant and beautiful vignettes representing India and southern Asia. This free show runs until Sunday, April 7th. You don’t want to miss this!

A Hidden Gem in Dominica

Sari Sari Falls Dominica

Sari Sari Falls Dominica

Located on the East coast of Dominica, Sari Sari are one of the most magnificent waterfalls in Dominica.

Looking for a place to stay while exploring this magnificent island? Check out Roots Jungle Retreat for memories of a lifetime.

DIY Super Bowl Table

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By: Nic and Jen

The kings of football meet king cake baby in this year’s DIY Super Bowl Table. Yes… fans will be joining together in cheering on the Baltimore Ravens or the San Francisco 49ers. Lets face it… some of you are using this as an excuse to crack the spines on your New Orleans cookbooks. Kitchens everywhere will be creating wonderful dishes of jambalaya, andouille sausage bread and grilled shrimp! Here come the Hurricanes and frosty cold beer. It’s time for a beans and jeans party!

Dress up your table with these fun “party in a jar” scenes. We’ve created one for football, one for the joys of Tabasco and of course our ode to king cake baby. Justice, power and faith will reign big this weekend!

It’s the way Americans feel about their beloved football and the way we celebrate Mardi Gras season.

Geometric parisian fabric clutch at it’s best

Marine Blue Pewter Grey Clutch Geometric Chicago Fine Threads PurseA Chicago Fine Threads Luxe handmade special occasion women’s luxury clutch purse is sure to coordinate with all your party attire. This geometric mod clutch purse is a perfect accompaniment with your favorite pair of jeans.

I purchased this designer grade fabric in Paris and paired it with a gunmetal finish frame.

An excellent gift for you or your BFF; will be cherished for many years.
This handcrafted clutch will keep your personal items organized and secure.
Easily holds cell phone, keys and your favorite lipstick.

Need a super stylish clutch for your next ladies night out?
From day to night this classic clutch will be your favorite go to accessory.
You deserve it girl!

Specifications:
Measures 10.5”w x 5.5”h x 3”d
Designer grade woven fabric
Metal kiss lock closure clutch frame.
Heavyweight interfacing for structure and protection of your personal items.

View more items from Chicago Fine Threads:
www.etsy.com/shop/chicagofnthredsluxe
www.etsy.com/shop/chicagofinethreads

Life is a mosaic! 2013 will add more color!

By: Jen

Located in the Macy's State Street store, Chicago, IL, USA

Marshall Field and Company Building
Macy’s Department Store
111 North State Street, Chicago, IL 60602
312.781.1000

Thank you to all of our followers and supporters during our first year of blogging! It’s been quite a discovery and we feel a great sense of accomplishment to have started this project in 2012. Just before the holidays, I had a wonderful opportunity to take my youthful nieces on a little trip down memory lane. We visited the historic Marshall Field and Company Building in Chicago. Macy’s now owns this landmark… long gone are the days of stellar customer amenities once known to Marshall Field’s customers.

We enjoyed a day of Ferris Bueller like antics and as we were getting ready to burst forth into the cold night, I asked the kids to look up and to our delight, we were awestruck by the Tiffany Favrile Ceiling which is located in the cosmetics department on the fifth floor. This ceiling is the first and largest built favrile glass mosaic in the world. The hand applied design includes over 1.6 million pieces of glass.

Louis Comfort Tiffany created and patented this type of iridescent glass. The material was first produced in 1896. During production, the pigments were poured into the molten glass thus imbedding the colors into the glass.

Life is like a mosaic! 2013 will surely add more color and more pieces into all of our stories. We wish you a most beautiful design in the 365 days to come. Happy New Year!

Can you make that cranberry pie?

Be the hero this holiday season! Every time we make this recipe from our Mom, we get requests for it, literally as in “Can you make that cranberry pie?” Friends, this is so easy– you can make it too! This pie works like a charm for a winter’s breakfast, brunch or t.v. time snack. Whip some heavy whipping cream with a couple of tablespoons of bourbon for an extra treat.

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Step One is the base!
12 0z. (3 cups) whole, fresh cranberries
3/4 C. chopped walnuts
1/2 C. firmly packed brown sugar
1 T. orange rind
1 tspn. cinnamon
Toss together and pour into a greased pie plate.

Step 2 is the batter!
2 eggs
1 stick melted butter
1 C. white sugar
1/4 C. sour cream
1 tspn. vanilla
Mix together with a fork.
Gradually add 1 cup of flour.

Step 3 is the assembly!
Pour over the cranberries.
Bake in 325° for 50 minutes.

Who ever thought a small acidic red berry from an evergreen dwarf shrub could taste so good? Next week we will share our cranberry salsa recipe! What do you do with the North American berry species?

Designer’s Connect! Lonesome Road Studio

In today’s Connect with the Designer, we are delighted to introduce you to Angie of Lonesome Road Studio.
Join us in Angie’s interview below to find out more about her multitude of talents!

2Sis: Tell us about your art; what is your talent?

After recently reading an article on the American Craft website, it occurred to me that what I am is an “applied artist.” I started out wanting to be a fine artist and evolved into doing a little of that, plus wearable art accessories.
Basically, I like to create interesting art and apply it in different ways, sometimes for your wall, sometimes for you to wear.
As far as my medium goes, I work in markers and the occasional mixed-media piece.

Lonesome Road Studio

Esmeralda artisan silver and Pilot Mountain Nevada turquoise necklace $165.00

2Sis: What is a day in the studio like for you?

As a one-person show, a day in the studio can mean anything from actual artwork to marketing/promoting, photographing items, ordering supplies, packing/shipping orders, customer service and more.
A day spent working entirely on art is rare, especially as someone who sells primarily online.

2Sis: Did you always know you were an artist? Were there flashes of brilliance for you as a child? Teenager?

Yes, I’ve always been artistic. I went quickly from coloring books to doing my own artwork on big newsprint-paper type pads of drawing paper, hehe! I apprenticed at an international ad agency at age 16 and I’ve never, ever worked at a single job that wasn’t either graphic design-related or otherwise artistic/creative.

2Sis: What inspires you, what do you believe in that you convey in your art?

I really appreciate humor, and mine is a little twisted at times. I like the unexpected, like a cheeseburger belt buckle, and I think I convey that type of quirkiness.

One of the things that I enjoy most about doing shows is when someone chuckles at one of my pieces since I intentionally use art, quotes, or something offbeat to create something different – a new spin, a different point of view.

Lonesome Road Studio

Cheeseburger belt buckle
$39.00

2Sis: Is there a particular cultures jewelry that you especially appreciate?

I try to use American-made components as much as possible and partly for this reason I love Native American art and jewelry, particularly southwestern and Pacific northwestern. You know when you see a piece of vintage silver and turquoise Navajo jewelry, that they used materials from their own environment. From an esthetic standpoint, those are also the colors I love; warm colors like turquoise blue/green, red corals and earthtones.

2Sis: What is your favorite material to work with?  

My favorite thing to work with is my markers, and ArtClay silver (although the silver has become VERY expensive in the last couple of years).

The designs that I use in the silver are my own; I had stamps created with my own artwork so I could retain creative control over my designs and did not have to use commercial stamps and, one of my newest favorite materials is leather. I’ve been creating small original leather pieces like wristbands and will soon be adding belts and guitar straps to that list.

2Sis: How do you get past “artists block”? Do you have a method for “getting going”?

I have absolutely no problem with artists block! What I do have is not enough time to create all of the projects in my head. The only time I have a problem with “getting going” is when I have so many things to do that I feel overwhelmed and don’t know where to start. That’s where my new skill of prioritizing has come in handy… sometimes.

Lonesome Road Studio

Sugar Skull Day of the Dead Original Spirit Buckle by Lonesome Road Studio
$95.00

2Sis: What fall fashion trends do you like this season?

I love the artsy bohemian styles and some of the southwestern looks I’ve been seeing – fringe, beadwork, etc. I just hope that it doesn’t become a generalized caricature, something like “The Village People go to Wisconsin Dells tourist gift shops!”

2Sis: If you could travel anywhere tomorrow where would it be?

Definitely somewhere in the western U.S. … Jackson Hole, WY? Taos or Santa Fe, NM?

2Sis: Where can we find you? Please list your links.

Buckles and pure silver: www.LonesomeRoadStudio.com

Buckles and fun art accessories: www.etsy.com/shop/LonesomeRoadStudio

Twitter: @LonesomeRoad

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/LonesomeRoadStudio

Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/lonesomerd/

LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/pub/angie-cornelius-lonesome-road-studio/25/b65/ba3

Bite This! The Lonesome Road Studio Kitchen Blog: www.lonesomeroadstudio.blogspot.com/

Email: LonesomeRdStudio@aol.com

I’m also a member of the Ottawa Art League, show/sell at our gallery at Jeremiah Joe Coffee at 807 LaSalle St. in Ottawa, IL.I admin our Facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/OttawaArtLeague

Lonesome Road Studio was recently accepted at IllustrationAge.com and will begin selling applied art wearable and prints there as well!

****************

2Sis: WOW! How’s that for an interview! I love that you have created your own stamps and try to use American made components as much as possible. You cracked us up with the “The Village People go to Wisconsin Dells tourist gift shops!” comment and we can attest that you are indeed a gifted artist. Thank you Angie for giving us a behind the scenes peek into your creative life!

Angie is generously offering a giveaway of these gorgeous silver earrings to one lucky winner.

Lonesome Road Studio

Frosty silver snowflake earrings, artisan pure silver

To enter follow and or like the links listed above. For each like or follow you will be entered into the giveaway.
Following the 2SistersAnytownUSA blog is required.

Be sure to post in the comments below all of your entries so we know how many times to enter your name into the giveaway.

Deadline is Sunday November 25. The winner to Angie’s giveaway will be announced here Monday November 26.
Good luck!

!Designer’s Connect! Gretchen Hind Designs

In today’s Connect with the Designer, we are delighted to introduce you to Gretchen of Gretchen Hind Designs. Join us in Gretchen’s interview below to find out more about her stunning jewelry!

2Sis: Tell us about your art; what is your talent?

I am the designer and owner of Gretchen Hind Designs. I create affordable, unique jewelry with a vintage, modern vibe – for women of all ages. I use a variety of metals, gemstones, vintage beads, and rocks in my designs.

Gretchen Hind Designs

Gretchen Hind Designs

2Sis: What is a day in the studio like for you?

Well, my “studio” is my whole house. Ha! I have a five-year-old preschooler and so my working time is mainly while he is at school, in bed, or otherwise entertained. I tend to stay up *way* too late many nights. Next year when he goes to kindergarten, I hope to have a more regular work schedule. A typical day involves checking email, attending to my Etsy shop and all my social networking sites, photographing product, etc., and then I start making jewelry and sending out orders.

2Sis: Did you always know you were an artist? Were there flashes of brilliance for you as a child? Teenager?

I’ve never really considered myself an artist. I guess I’ve always been rather strangely creative and analytically balanced. As a young kid I drew an entire blueprint house plan for my dream house (I think my parents still have it.) I’ve always been interested in design of many genres and I’ve dabbled in a number of form such as writing, photography (doesn’t every girl go through this stage?), fashion, interior design, and making lampshades – prior to starting my jewelry business.

2Sis: What inspires you, what do you believe in that you convey in your art?

Nature, history and color inspire me. I love creating signature pieces from scratch, using only simple tools and ideas. There is so much jewelry out there, that I hope to always stay unique. I started making jewelry by wire wrapping beach rocks that my little boy and I would find at a Lake Michigan beach near our home and it just took off from there.

Gretchen Hind Designs

Gretchen Hind Designs

2Sis: Is there a particular cultures jewelry that you especially appreciate?

I’m a huge mid-century modern fan of all art forms – from jewelry, to clothing, furniture, music, literature, and architecture. I believe that my jewelry reflects those passions.

2Sis: How do you get past “artists block”? Do you have a method for “getting going”?

A glass of wine always helps. J Sometimes I take a step back from orders and things I *have* to do and just spread out a note pad, some gems and wire options, and start making a new piece. This typically leads to additional ideas as well.

2Sis: What fall fashion trends do you like this season?

I’ve been seeing lots of gorgeous scarves and cool boots.

Gretchen Hind Designs

Gretchen Hind Designs

2Sis: If you could travel anywhere tomorrow where would it be? Paris.

2Sis: Where can we find you? Please list your links.

www.GretchenHindDesigns.etsy.com

www.Facebook.com/GretchenHindDesigns

www.Twitter.com/GH_designs

www.Pinterest.com/GretchenHind

www.Wanelo.com/GretchenHind

Gretchen is giving you all a chance to own a piece of her gorgeous jewelry by offering a one time use, 15% discount off your total purchase, for a limited time in her Etsy shop. Use Coupon Code 2SISTERSANYTOWNUSA15 at the check out!

Thank you Gretchen for giving us a behind the scenes peek into your creative life! Be sure to check out Gretchen’s Etsy shop for your holiday gift giving.

Halloween’s Month

Author: Jen Schmidt

Green and gold collide
One is the victor
The other one dies

Bright sun descending it’s light
The crow feather reflecting blue and black
Bonfire takes flight

The finality of summer… comforted by a maple bacon muffin in Union Pier, MI

By: Jen

Our truck is packed with all the sand, bags and unopened wine known to mankind. We must say goodbye to the beach… In a desperate attempt to soothe our souls we go for one last walk with the family and our beloved mutt. Of course it couldn’t end there. Our dog was bitten in the ear by one of its kind. Nothing like a slight medical emergency to end the holiday. The silver lining to the story is that my usually very calm husband was realizing that our last day at the beach would need to be cut short, in order to care for our dog. We needed to get home.

“Well I’m stopping at that new Nani’s Café on the way out of town!” he proclaimed…

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I sat in the overpacked truck. He brought the menu out for me. Feeling so flustered I just ordered the Chicago Style Dog. He chose the BLT Dog. My brother-in-law picked The Mexican Dog. They brought me a maple bacon muffin– just for kicks. I took a bite of the muffin. I never got out of the truck so fast! Forget that our dog had my fashion scarf wrapped around her head to alleviate an injured ear. I had to get into Nani’s to talk to whomever made this most unbelievable muffin! Who made these extremely tasty hotdogs?

I met Nessa and Reyna– the proprietors of the new Nani’s Café located in Union Pier, Michigan. Their coffee was excellent. The muffin was decadent. The dogs were what dogs should be! The bun was buttered, the dog was kosher and the toppings were a new twist on familiar ingredients. Peppery fresh arugula complimented the BLT Dog! When we arrived home and after unpacking all the memories, my husband shared…

“You know, I’m still thinking about that hotdog.”
Oh yeah? I’m still thinking about that muffin!

Why not take a step back in time and go get a frosty mug of rootbeer this Labor Day weekend. That should take the edge off of this great summer coming to a close. Happy Labor Day to all!

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