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Free Pattern: 3 collage versions of easter eggs

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Matisse Inspired Easter Egg
"Jazz is rhythm and meaning."  --  Henri Matisse

Inspired by Henri Matisse's Jazz series, I created a collaged egg using remnants of tissue paper from previous projects. Rather than cut specific shapes, I layered the papers randomly while listening to some big band jazz, the likes of Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong and Count Basie.  This is a quick afternoon project, easily completed within 30 minutes and a great craft for children.



paper mache egg

assorted colors of tissue paper


Modge Podge, matte finish

sponge brush

tin foil

For variations add:

extra fine glitter

glue with a fine tip applicator

Dresden gold papers or other small paper diecuts



Pour some Modge Podge onto the tin foil.  Dab your sponge brush into the Modge Podge and begin to coat the egg with a thin layer of the mixture.

Place tissue paper randomly on the egg.  Smooth out wrinkles with your fingers.  Add more Modge Podge and layer on some more tissue paper.  Stop at about 3-4 layers. 

With a clean sponge brush, remove excess Modge Podge.

Allow to dry.



Glitter Swirl Easter Egg

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Glitter Swirl Easter Egg

Once the egg has dried, apply a thin line of glue around the egg and sprinkle extra fine glitter on the glue.  (It helps to lay down paper on your work surface to contain a possible glitter explosion.)

Allow to dry.

Brush off any loose glitter.

Use the newspaper rolled into a funnel shape to pour the loose glitter back into the jar.


Louise Easter Egg

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Louise Easter Egg  Egg4

My mother loved Dresden and Victorian scrap papers.  This one is honor of her.

Once the decoupage has dried, apply a thin layer of glue to the back of the gold braid.  Apply it to the egg, vertically circling it.

Apply a thin layer of glue to the back of the butterfly.  Apply one to the front and back of the egg.

Allow to dry.

crafty yummy thai food, sticky rice

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer umbrellas suspended from ceiling
"The whole world, as we experience it visually, comes to us through
the mystic realm of color."  --  Hans Hoffman

Restaurants are often trapped in decoration cliches, such as sombreros for Mexican and red checkered table cloths for Italian.  Viewed as setting an ethnic ambiance, they do the opposite, these cliches come off as predictable and boring and are almost always a guarantee of a lack luster meal to be served. 

Sticky Rice, specializing in Northern Thai cuisine, is one of those delightful exceptions to the usual Chicago Thai restaurant.  I started with the deep fried bananas wrapped in wontons.  Normally I'd think of this as a dessert, but it was perfect as an appetizer.  The wonton wrappers were crispy while the inside was warm and soft to the bite.  It was followed with the Pad See Ewe which was beautifully spiced. I love it when restaurants add vegetarian sections with appropriate warnings of which dishes may contain dairy, egg or fish.  LOVE it!  

Sticky Rice is bright and cheerful.  The dining room is painted yellow and orange and filled with crafty touches.  I adored the ceiling with suspended open umbrellas adding dots of color.  The wall by our table had these sweet paper flowers made of tagboard, yarn, styrofoam and glitter.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer paper flowers wall decoration

Even the lamp shades were clever. I'm thinking of a version to update my front hallway.  

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer paper lantern at Sticky Rice
Sticky Rice hit all the marks for me to return - great food with a good vegetarian selection, fun environment and under $10 for an entree.  They receive extra bonus points for providing crafty inspiration.

paper houses


©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Paper House enjolive

"A house is made of walls and beams; a home is built with love and dreams." -- Anonymous

This winter I purchased a die cut machine and am having a blast with it.  I recently used it to teach a lesson on implied versus acutal texture in art, as well as how a 2d shape may be manipulated into a 3d form.  Students in my DIY Toys class  at the Evanston Art Center each received a house blank, flat with all the pieces.  They loved seeing how paper could be used for more than just a picture.  


This haunted house was created by our yougest student, barely 6 years old.  See the ghost?  Very scary.  He placed the house in a yard with a broken fence that was strewn with "trash" and featured a large tree changing to fall colors.  It was fully thought out from beginning to end.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer student haunted house

Students were permited to use watercolor crayons, pencils, paper and glue.  This tree house was designed by an 8 year old.  She decided her house would resemble stucco painted in a terracotta color.  Talk about sophisticated!  The front step has a built in ladder leading to a sidewalk.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer student tree house

She didn't stop with the house.  Her first attempt at a tree trunk for the house became a log for a little paper girl.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer student tree house detail

This suburban dream was concieved by a seven year old. Each wall of the house is a different color scheme and pattern alternating between cool and warm colors and finished with a confetti roof.  I love the car at the end of the driveway!

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer student suburban house

Another clever tree house comlete with tree branches for a more realistic setting.  At the ladder's base is a fire pit with roaring fire and logs for family and friends to gather. 

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer student tree house
The students had such fun that they made two houses, one to take home and then the ones featured here which will be on display Young Evanston Artists Festival in late spring.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Houses

I have plans for a few of my own paper dream houses.

sleep tight, don't let the bed bugs bite

Sleep tight treasury by enjolive
"Sleep tight!  Don't let the bedbugs bit! And if they do, squish them!"
-- me and Sweet Pea

Every night my daughter and I followed this ritual when she was young -  the bubbliest of bubble baths, followed by story time with a cup of herbal tea and then a singsong about the bedbugs.  Of course, we added the squish 'em bit along the way.  Even now with my daughter older, she will shout it from her bedroom before turning out her light.

I've been thinking about these rituals as I've swung from night owl to barely making it to 9pm.  Is my body adjusting to spring?  Is it caving to the battle with allergies and shutting me down whether I like it or not?  My ritual includes the same as above with the addition of a journal entry.  I like to write a few lines about what has been positive about my day.  The world provides a daily avalanche of negativity, so I don't bother with focusing upon it.  Of course, there are days when it is a challenge to find even one sentence to write that remains hopeful or lighthearted.  As Grandma would say, those are the crapolla days of life, just wipe off you shoes and keep walking.  Thanks, Grandma!

This week's treasury has a bedtime theme.  Sweet dreams!

Easter Egg Bling

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Egg Bling

"Easter spells out beauty, the rare beauty of new life."  --  S.D. Gordon

Mom was always one to plan for holidays months before they arrived.  Christmas started in July with all presents purchased and wrapped by mid-October and the tree up the day after Thanksgiving. Easter preparations began on Mardi Gras.  I don't know how she did it as the holidays always seem to catch me by surprise. So when I craft for them, I make items that take only a few hourse to complete.   This blinged out egg is perfect. It adds sparkle to the usual Easter line up and can double at Christmas as an ornament.   I call that the win-win of crafting.


Stryofoam™ egg

Tissue paper (I used pink scraps leftover from my Peony Tissue Paper Wreath.) 

Collage Pauge® Instant Decoupage™

Aleene's® Original Tacky Glue

sequins, same or similar in color to the tissue paper

2" eye pin

8" of 1/4" satin ribbon

Foam Brush






Cut the tissue paper into 1" squares. 

Pour a puddle of Collage Pauge®  onto the foil.  Using the foam brush dab the Collage Pauge® over a portion of the egg.  Add a few pieces of tissue paper. Dab more Collage Pauge® across the surface of the paper.  Continue to collage in this manner until the entire egg is covered in tissue paper.  Allow to dry.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Easter Egg Bling
Once dry, push the 2" eye pin into the center egg's top end.

Apply a thin coat of Aleene's® Original Tacky Glue over a portion of the egg.  Use the side of a toothpick to evenly spread it out.  

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Easter Egg Bling

With a clean toothpick, lightly dab it into the glue.  This will give the toothpick a slightly tacky surcface for using to pick up and position sequins.  Apply sequins to the egg with the cup side of the sequin facing. (This side is more reflective and will provide maximum blingness.)

Continue adding glue and sequins until the entire surface of the egg is covered.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Easter Egg Bling
Slip the ribbon through the eye of the eye pin.  Pull it through so both ends are touching. Tie them together using an overhand knot.

Allow the glue to dry.

Give some Easter Egg Bling as a gift, hang it in the window or display it in your favorite basket.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Easter Egg Bling

happy spring!

the lark's on the wing, an etsy treasury by enjolive"The year's at the spring
And day's at the morn;
Morning's at seven;
The hillside's dew-pearled;
The lark's on the wing;
The snail's on the thorn;
God's in His heaven -
All's right with the world!"
  --  Robert Browning

Happy Spring Solstice!  As I write, bird song fills the morning air.  In Chicago, it is ususally still grey with only a whisper of green promise, but with these recent beautiful days of rare warmth and sunshine, I've been out in the garden.  The daffodils are in full bloom.  Squirrels scamper around the trees.  Even my cherry tree is budding.  I'm nervous that a freezing cold snap will kill it all off, but hopefully the Acrtic and North Atlantic Oscillations will stay in sink keeping the cold air up by the Acrtic cap.  

In celebration of this fine day, I created this spring-themed treasury of delightful works of art on Etsy.  

more from the glass prairie

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Anise photo credit Larry Sanders

"If we could see the miracle of a single flower clearly,
our whole life would change."  -- Buddha

Here are a few more from my Glass Prairie series.  Making them is a fine balance between representation and matieral concern.  Wire and bead can only do so much.  I find that since starting this project, I've increased my awareness of a flower's structure and how it varies from genus to genus.  This variety is what makes flowers so endlessy fascinating.  

423px-Mature_flower_diagram.svgImage is from Wikipedia.

The above is Anise, while the following is Blue Eyed Grass.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Blue eyed grass flower photo credit Larry Sanders

Goat's Rue
©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Goat's Rue photo credit Larry Sanders

Pasque Flower
©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Pasque flower photo credit Larry Sanders

As I continue my work on the Glass Prairie, I have begun work on another installation with a flower theme, in this case field of them.  This is a gouache study of what will eventually be a wall to floor quilt / piecing / haven't quite figured out....

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Study for Mille fleur Study

Photo credit for the beaded flowers goes to Larry Sanders.

how to make a peony tissue paper wreath

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Making a Tissue Paper Peony Wreath

"Spring is nature's way of saying, 'Let's party!' " --  Robin Williams

Hello sunshine!  Spring is my favorite season, hands down, no question about it.  I thought I would get a head start with it by making a wreath of peonys.  Around Chicago these won't be in bloom until June, so I made mine from tissue paper.  It's a great project to do with children!

1            pack each of 10 sheets of 20x20 inch tissue paper in red, hot pink, pale pink, white

1            spool of 26 guage green wire or 36 green pipe cleaners (chenilles)

1            18" wire wreath frame

1            1/2 yard of 2" wide green satin ribbon

1            wire cutters

1            scissors



Cut 36 12" pieces of wire or set aside 36 pipe cleaners.

Open a tissue paper pack,  flatten it out and cut a straight line down the center vertically.  You will now have 20 sheets of paper, each 10" x 20".

Take the first pile of 10" x 20" paper strips and cut horizotally across the stack every 4".  This will make 100 strips of tissue paper each 4" x 10".  I didn't use a ruler, so some were slightly smaller while others were slightly larger. 

Repeat the previous step until all the paper is cut.

Stack 6-10 strips ontop of each other.  They can be all one color or two-toned. 

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Making a Tissue Paper Peony Wreath

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Making a Tissue Paper Peony Wreath
Proceed to fold them into accordian pleats.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Making a Tissue Paper Peony Wreath
Once completed, fold in half like a fan.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Making a Tissue Paper Peony Wreath
Slip a wire through the center of the fold and twist together

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Making a Tissue Paper Peony Wreath
Cut a semi-circle around the edge of the open end.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Making a Tissue Paper Peony Wreath
Open up one side and smooth it flat as much as possible without tearing the tissue paper.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Making a Tissue Paper Peony Wreath
Pull one sheet at a time gently toward the center.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Making a Tissue Paper Peony Wreath
When you finish one side, repeat the previous step on the other side.

Wrap the wire stem around the frame.  

Continue making flowers and wrapping their stems around the frame until is full.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Making a Tissue Paper Peony Wreath

If you still have tissue paper remaining after making 36 flowers, feel free to make more.  I kept going until my wreath was very "fluffy" and full.  You may like a slightly looser look or want to purchase even more paper to make more flowers.

Once the wreath is full of flowers, slip the ribbon onto the back of the top of your wreath.  Pull it through until folded in half.

Cut a V into the ends of the ribbon and tie them together.

Hang it up and enjoy!

**  To keep it from quickly fading, do not place it in direct sunlight

or where it may get wet.  **

some advice to a young creative entrepreneur

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Crafting a business
"To open a shop is easy, to keep it open is an art."  -- Chinese Proverb

Yesterday I received an email from a young art student seeking business advice.  The following is a slightly edited version of what I wrote her. Much of it is pertanent to Chicago, but there are bits which I think apply to anyone.  
Attend the Creative Chicago Expo.  March 24th is the date for artists.  It is free with lots of great workshops.  Topics range from setting up a business to copyright law in a digital age.  
Attend the Expo prepared with business cards.  You can get some made on the cheap with Vistaprint.  I prefer Lady Printing myself as it is a woman-owned business  with excellent customer service. The owner even sends you a hand written thank you note. Moo cards are cool too. Anway,  you need the cards as you want to be able to give them out as you network and meet people. 
I am reading a great book on personal branding. Get it or another similar book.  It will help you enormously with networking, developing your brand image, how you present yourself to the public, etc.
Next, join the Chicago Craft Mafia website and mailing list.  We offer (yes, I'm a member) free quarterly presentations pertaining to craft entrepreneurship.  It's also a great time to network and get advice from others. Our next one is in April. While you are at it, sign up for the DIY Trunk Show email list.  In June we will be sending out application information for our annual fall craft show.
Start looking up business webinars.  There are many that are free and they are a great way to keep you motivated, learn new skills, and brush up on ones that are rusty.

This week there is an inexpensive workshop being given by the director for Lawyers for the Creative Arts.  (Many towns in the US have such organizations. Check with your local arts council.)
Read through the business section of Chicago Artists Resource.  There is so much information that it can be a bit overwhelming.  Take your time reading through it. (Note to those not in Chicago, the website has many national and international links.)
Join HARO - Help a Reporter.  Three times a day you will receive queries from reporters all over the US - blog, print and tv.  Write back to those that are relevant.  You may be quoted in their articles which means free publicity!
Get on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and YouTube.  
Start a blog!  Promote your blog on your social media feed and your business card.  The blog should be used to announce new products, upcoming shows etc., but also let it reflect you and your interests and how these tie into your art.
This next peice of advice comes from a friend - start a business journal.  Write down your success, failures, joys and frustrations.  On those days when business sucks, it helps to be reminded of your successes.  And when you think you can sail free and clear, it's good to have a notebook of memories that keep you in check.

Make your product uniquely your own.  Keep it true to you. Both products you mentioned are market saturated, so what twist can you give them?  I hand knit hats for the holiday markets. Nothing elaborate, but I have many repeat customers because I knit with quality in mind and have a quirky sense of color.  I love the whimsical and that shows up in my work.  The same level of quality and professionalism is true of the art I show and sell through galleries.

Good luck!  Have fun!  And yes, as my mom would say, a person who started and operated a catering business for 25 years, there will be days you will swear you were drunk when you decided self employment was a good idea.  Those days pass, just like a bad hangover.  (Yes, my mother actually said this to me, just about everytime I called her when I'd be losing my nerve.)
What advice would you give to this student?   Please share it here.  I'd love to learn more and will be sure she and her classmates see it.

the duchess of no

©2003 Lindsay Obermeyer How many times do I have to tell you photo credit Larry Sanders
"Education consists mainly of what we have unlearned."  --  Mark Twain

 Grace Bonney's recent essay on  Design*Sponge about the business of saying no left me amazed.   How in the world was she able to crawl into my head?  I've been there, done that and have the medical bills to prove it. What we've both experienced is the negative impact of stress.  Last year was one of the best years of my career, but I  also ended up in the emergency room, not to mention the doctor's office for more tests than I wish to count.  For someone as driven as myself, saying no to any opportunity, let alone to family and friends, has got to be the hardest thing I can do.  I suck at it.  As it turns out, I'm not the only one judging from Grace's essay and the comments following it.

But I'm learning.  This was my first weekend off in nearly three years! Yes, two whole days off in a row.  Saturday I sat at my dining table reading through Facebook, going numb from the possibilities, so I did some dusting.    Like I said, I'm learning.  Grace figures she's become the Duchess of No, working her way up to Queen status.  I'm still at the stage of Lady-in-Waiting.  It really is a process to learn how to let go, to relax, to just be.

Buidling a business is completely absorbing.  I love my work.  So if I love what I do, does it still count as work?  YES!  Last year I sat buried in my studio, cranking out show after show.  Every opportunity was another brick in the foundation.  Art brings pleasure.  I enjoy it.  I also love to garden, putter in the kitchen , read and hang out with friends.   My garden is a mess and the homemade jam stock is down to a single jar.  You get the picture.  

As Grace so astutely pointed out, saying no doesn't mean missing an opportunity.  I've worked hard to make those opportunities happen and more will come my way.  Sure, I may cause disappointment, but sometimes it is worse to say yes, especially if the situtation causes stress for myself.  I have to trust that there will be another opportunity at another time, better yet, by saying no now, I may actually be opening the door to something even better.

©2003 Lindsay Obermeyer How many times do I have to tell you detail photo credit Larry Sanders

I'm adopting the guage marks set out by Grace.  They refer to my choices in life.  Take a look at her post and remember - "...[e]mbark only on situations that are respectful of your time, your knowledge and your health."*  You can say that again.

*quote from Grace Bonney's essay "Biz Ladies: Saying No" from 3/06/2012.

Images are of my piece "How many times do I have to tell you..." from my Woman's Work series. The art is 7 feet by 12 feet and made up of worn out dish cloths with computerized text across the surface.  Photo credit goes to Larry Sanders.