Sunday, March 29, 2009

Meet Liesan from Ignisfatuus

1. Please introduce us to who you are.
Hello, my name is Liesan from Ignisfatuus, I am a 30 year old woman and I spend most of my time trying to become a decent bookbinder, mostly by teaching myself but I'm thinking of attending a two year course in September so I get some formal education in traditional techniques. I have a deep passion for paper, it has a magical quality to me that no other material in this world can claim, so I play with it, a lot! Besides that I sometimes serve as a substitute teacher (which I thoroughly dislike at the moment) in Dutch, English and homework classes. My Lover and I play GildWars and watch silly SF series together and I love to read and write and listen to audio books when I'm busy crafting.
Some of the fruits of my labour I try to sell on-line, besides my own things I also sell things my grandmother makes. If I wouldn't we would both drown in our own creations :).

2. Where in the world are you and what is the best thing about where you live?
I live in Nieuwegein, a place near Utrecht in The Netherlands. The best thing about Nieuwegein is how close it is to Utrecht. Besides that there is nothing of any interest here. Utrecht has all the nice little stores and worthwhile museums.
Living in The Netherlands isn't really that special to me, it just happens to be the place where I am.

3. Tell us a little about your craft and why you love it.
I attended a so called 'waldorf-style' school when I was younger. If you have no idea what that is you can look it up or send me a private message.
But anyway, this meant that there wore lots and lots and lots of arts and crafts lessons from kindergarten up to final year of college, and thus it came to be we got bookbinding classes. At the time I didn't really think much of it, I liked it well enough but there was no instant passion. But it just stuck with me somehow, like a little friendly virus working it's way into my system and suddenly, almost 10 years later I just had to pick it up again. And so I did.
It is hard for me to explain why bookbinding is so dear to me, the best I can say is that it somehow feels so completely 'right' when I sit at my table playing with binders board, paper, thread, fabric etc... There is nothing in this world that makes me more happy (ok well maybe there is some competition from Lover).

4. What is the most expensive supply you have purchased for your craft?
The supplies I buy are quite evenly priced so I'm going to stretch it to tools.
The most expensive tool I bought myself was a cast iron book-press, it is second (or third or fourth) hand but looks as good as new. It has been the best 75 euros I ever spend. The most expensive tool that was bought for my craft was a brand new table top board shear, I got it from my ex-boyfriend (when we were still together of course) and he paid 300 euros for it.
Immediately afterwards I felt guilty about letting him buy something for me that cost that much (I'm not good at accepting expensive gifts) but I am to this day very grateful for it because I have no idea how I would even make books without it.

5. Could you please tell us about a person in your life that has inspired you?
In my pursuit of crafts in general I think I instinctively take after my grandmother and that is about as close to an inspiration as anyone gets, bookbinding (and all crafting) for me is very much about following my own lead, I have no examples or inspirations to look at.

6. If there was only 24 hours left before the world ended what would you be doing?
I don't know, probably not crafting ;). It sort of depends on the situation the world would be in that last 24 hours but I think I would ultimately want to spend most of them with Lover, doing nothing special, maybe even fall asleep in his arms and not experience the end consciously.

7. What is your favourite meal?
Nothing in particular. I like food that is so hot and spicy that I tear up eating it.


Artfire Shop
Etsy Shop

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Easter is coming - no chocolate please!

OK, so Easter is coming fast, but many ladies are on diets or are detoxing or just wouldn't appreaciate a chocolate egg. so what can you get for them?

Well I've had a wander through Artfire's shops to find some lovely presents that would really be happily recieved by any lady.

first how about some Jewlery? It's always a great idea. Here's a wonderful piece by alibalijewellery from Scotland The Red Sun Ray necklace. Made from fine silver and utterly beautiful.

How about something beautiful to hang on the wall?
This 5X7 print by soundslikerain
So wonderful and is actually called "sail away with me, honey" Maybe a little extra message there? Couldn't you just disappear into it?

And now for something really different; handmade clothes from Berlin. the ladies at m.i.p.h.i.a
have the most wonderful selection including this Jersey wool sweater with a collar. Mmm, stylish.

Is she a craft lover? In which case maybe she'd like the supplies and patterns to make something for herself? How about this clever purse making kit put together by U-Handbag from London. Isn't it just the sweetest? and you can never have too many bags!
Or maybe just something so very cute and Springlike. This little felted fairy carries a Snowdrop and is just one of many flower fairies made by Ignisfatuus from Norway. They are just so pretty and would look great on a dresser or on the table at a Springtime dinner party.

If you just take a look at the wonderful artists at Artfire you are bound to find something just perfect for your lady - and it's not chocolate!!!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009


I just made a little styleboard at Kaboodle.
Artfire Europe...
Artfire Europe... by jennykarlssondesign

It's my first try, but I'll work on it. :)

Welkom Nederlandstalige shoppers !

Beste Belgen , Nederlanders and alle andere die onze taal machtig zijn !
Deze blog is tot stand gekomen met de samenwerking van een aantal Europese creativelingen.
Wij zijn allemaal lid van een site waar je leuke dingen kan vinden die allemaal met de hand gemaakt zijn. Je kan het zo gek niet bedenken of je kan het ergens op de site wel vinden.

Waarom doen we het samen? wel omdat we één groot Europa zijn en binnen de Europese grenzen het mogelijk is om vrij te verkopen zonder al de moeilijkheden van taxatie en douane.
Onze kunstenaars gaan samen op pad om Europa te veroveren ... wij zullen samen acties doen ..elkaar promoten en ook U af en toe mee laten genieten van een Europese promotie of wedstrijd.

Aan de zijkant van deze blog zie je een lijst van al de studio's die hier aan deelnemen. Ga eens een kijkje nemen en ontdek heel wat leuke geschenkjes, uniek en aan betaalbare prijzen.

Er zijn ook winkels die benodigdheden verkopen voor uw eigen hobby's , zo ontdek je misschien eens iets nieuws dat in je eigen hobbywinkel niet voorradig is.
In de toekomst gaan er ook geschenkbons beschikbaar zijn en kan je op die manier een geschenkje geven aan gelijk wie in Europa .

Heb je vragen en begrijp je de engelse taal niet zo goed dan mag je mij steeds contacteren.

Welkom in het Europa van de "Artfire Artisans"
geschreven door Linda ( of Moonstone )
Prettige dag nog verder !!
We hopen dat we U bij Artfire mogen begroeten !
Je bent er in alle geval héél welkom !

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Green thoughts

The blue sky is out there alright and on the way to the outdoor flea market the first flowers were waving at us. Should it be true, is spring really around the corner? Everywhere you hear people talk about it longingly. Maybe some green thoughts will help to lure it out of its hiding place? Accidentally I found some in my bag and I would like to share them with you ;-)

Brought to you by paintboxcrafts from England - flowers on lime green enamel. What a happy design!

BabsBeadsandDesign is thinking of flowers, too. "Meadow" this glass bead is called and it revives memories of lying in the grass, surrounded by flowers, letting your mind wander. Spring theme indeed ...

Fresh and shimmering greens are also presented by Gwendoline in a very unique way through this lampwork beads.

But of course not only jewelry can give us green thoughts. How about going for a walk with a green bag like the one from JennyKarlssonDesign?

And last, but not least ... take this thought in green (or any other color) with you. Although the message initially was to be posted in times of crisis, it's a message that is timeless. You find it in artistico's shop.

Stay tuned for more thoughts on this station, may they be green, red, wired, woolly, large or small ... with European artists I bet you are always in for a pleasant surprise!

Cat from CatsWire

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Meet Liron of Ben-David's Art studio

1. Please introduce us to who you are.
My name is Liron, I'm 21 years old and from Israel, aka "The Holy Land". In the day to day business I'm a Computer IT PC technician, learning for several certifications and running also the family business which is our Art Studio. Almost ever since I remember myself I've always made some kind of craft. Painting, Wood burning, Soldering, Polymer Clay,Sculpting, Mosaic, etc..

Recently we've moved to a small town called Giv'at Avni on the shores of the Galilee sea (near the ancient city of Tiberius).While building our new family studio and reassembling everything we (unfortunately) acknowledged that we must say goodbye to many of our beloved art works (it seems that 20 years is enough time to make lots of art work!).

2. Where in the world are you and what is the best thing about where you live?
I'm from Israel. This is really a unique place as from one side it's pretty modern hi-tech country and from the other side you still get to see authentic cultures, for example you can meet here Jewish from all over the world, Arabs, Christians, Moslem, Armenians, Bahá'í , etc... Other than that it's very small country but you get to see here mountains with snow, big lakes, sea, mountains, desert, valleys, forests and more! And most of all it's home.

3. Tell us a little about your craft and why you love it.
I'm a PC IT Technician as I've said but at our studio I do almost any type of craft. Depends on the mood and inspiration. The thing that most of all inspire me when I craft an art work is the fact that I'm going to create from simple materials something that will last for many many years, make people who watch it say "WOW" and most of all getting that little good feeling of taking one step backward... looking at the creation and saying : "I did it..."

4. What is the most expensive supply you have purchased for your craft?
A PC, made from wood a case for a 2000$ pc (at the time). Try to Google "moding" for more information.

5. Could you please tell us about a person in your life that has inspired you?
in 5 words: Nice, Polite, Professional, Responsible, Creative.

6. If there was only 24 hours left before the world ended what would you be doing?
I would smash my cell phone of course!

7. What is your favourite meal?
Mom's Food. Bet it yours too.

mgil - our main website (hebrew)
Etsy shop
Art Fire Shop
ByHand profile

Friday, March 20, 2009

Spring is coming!

Today is Vårdagsjämningen in Sweden. I looked the word up in english and it's vernal equinox. in other words today day and night are both 12 hours long. And tomorrow we will have a little more daylight than darkness. That's worth a celebration!

So i went looking for spring items among our members.

Here are some lovely stitch markers from Welsh Millie's Whimsies:

I'm not in to polymer clay beads myself, but if I were - this is what I'd get from Mgilinfo:

And a new, luxuriouse handbag for those spring occations. From m.a.p.h.i.a:

And here's the perfect bag for bringing your knitting outdoors in the spring sun. From Jenny Karlsson Design:

A lovely bead from a fellow lampworker, Gwendoline:

And finally, I might nick this necklace from myself ;) :

Susanne Folin
Babs Beads & Design

Happy Colors in Europe !

"Summer in Europe"

Thursday, March 19, 2009

How about a heart ?

Heard of breaking heart, bleeding heart, how about crumpled heart??!! Alibali Jewellery is a romantic.......
Fine silver heart shaped earrings with a crumpled texture.

These simple little hearts measure 1.5cm across and the whole earring from tip to toe is 3cm.

They are hung on sterling silver handcrafted and hammered earring wires.

I love the simple clean look of these! Take a look at her store for more delicious simpleness.

Newest Listings

In The Artfire Europe guild we have lots of talented people that are constantly making and listing new items. There is a list of their shops for you to look through on the right hand side of this blog. Here are a few of the newest listings of our Guild members. If any of them take your fancy, clicking on the image will take you to their listing where you can read more about them.

If you are a jewellery designer take a look in Gaialai shop. She has lots of gorgeous lampwork beads. They can be used as focal beads, or pendants. They are bright, colourful and fun. Have a look and be inspired!

Spotted Sparrow uses mixed media to create fabulous works of art. This one uses an 1875 cabinet card photograph, watercolours, ephemera, button, watch gear, movement, ribbon, ink, and cardstock. Fabulous work!

The Sheriffs Daughter from Edinburgh makes stylish, simple and elegant jewellery. These earrings are aptly known as "Great balls of Fire!" They are so pretty. Imagine how they twinkle in sunlight.

Wolliesjes is a fellow crocheter and she makes these cosy hand warmers to order. You can have them made in a choice of colours. from black to purple and red to green. They are very beautiful.

Have fun checking out the Guild shops. There are always new beautiful goods appearing in them.

Written by Lynne of the PiratePixieCrew

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Meet Cat from CatsWire

Each week here on the European Artfire Guild blog we will be letting you get to know a little bit more about our Guild members.

This week it is Cat from CatsWire.

1. Please introduce us to who you are.
I am 43 years old, a librarian during the day Monday till Thursday, and I live together with my husband, five cats, a bunny, a guinea pig and several gerbils.

2. Where in the world are you and what is the best thing about where you live?
I live in a smaller town in Southern Germany, not very far from Stuttgart for those who ever had heard of that. The best thing is that I love my home town where I also was born and came back after five years of "exile". The second best thing is that my city is not far from Giengen where the Steiff factory with the museum is, always a fun trip to make!

3. Tell us a little about your craft and why you love it.
Although I started to try other things as well and have tried different crafts, wire crocheting really got me hooked (I know, the joke is not new). Not only that I can sit relatively comfortably while doing it, but I love the fragility of it and the amazingly different things you can make with it. I love the way the hook and the wire guide my fingers sometimes and what may have started out as a ring, ends as a drop with a little bending and experimenting. It's never boring and I surprise myself constantly.

4.What is the most expensive supply you have purchased for your craft?
The most expensive supply is the silver I use, I think. I stare longingly at beautiful gems, but I am holding myself back ... yet.

5. Could you please tell us about a person in your life that has inspired you?
My greatest inspiration has been my mother, not for my craft, though, but for my life. I admire her for the way she handled a big, rowdy family all those years and wish I had been not so blind and often selfish when I was young, even if it was mostly the typical teenager behaviour. I hope I can pay a little bit of it back now that I'm able to. For my craft the inspiration has been in all the crafters I've seen through the years. There was a friend of mine who used to knit the most gorgeous sweaters (mine are hardly to be called okay) or a friend who was so good at drawing or or or ....

6. If there was only 24 hours left before the world ended what would you be doing?
Erm, I don't know. Probably panicking in the attempt to finish everything I started? Lie in the grass, look at the clouds or at the moon at night. Really I have no idea, I don't plan that far.

7. What is your favourite meal?
Kässpätzle, no doubt. For those not from Southern Germany, this is like a traditional dish, I am going to try to explain. Spätzle are noodles made from flour, water, salt and eggs. Lots of eggs if you are a proud homemaker. You should make them yourself, the ready-made don't taste very good. After they have been boiled, you add cheese (Käse) and onions. Non-purists can add other ingredients, too. I am Swabish, I am a purist.

Now you know a little more about me and if you have any more questions about my craft or me go ahead and ask

Friday, March 13, 2009

New Guild Members

After a recent members drive we have gained some new members to our guild and as a welcome to the team I'd like to feature some of their goods today. It's great to have some new blood in the guild.

Magic made this pretty, whimsical magnet. Each one is hand drawn, coloured and varnished so no to will ever be exactly the same. I adore the little birds in the girls hair! Put it on your fridge door to cheer you up every time you go into the kitchen. Magic is based in Lithuania.

Cinderella is a well known fairy tale and there has been much art work inspired by the story. This beautiful Limited edition print of a collage was made by Grecian Artistico. The Skirt of words is very detailed you'll spot something new each time you look.

UK Artisan Polka & Bloom hand crochet this rainbow of colours blanket. Isn't it gorgeous?! Made from a soft cotton yarn any baby would be giggly happy to be wrapped in this gorgeous blanket. Cosy and warm. A great gift to give a new born baby.

These fabulous little hair clips from Enna Design Shop would look so cute clipping back a little girls hair from her face. The Matryoshka dolls are so carefully stitched with such pretty details. Enna is based in Turkey.

Oooh yippee for fibre art! This needle felted brooch was made by Spaniard Nekidesu. What a great colour combination. The hand died roving and the sparkly border make this one off brooch very special. If you have a plain top or jacket that needs a bit of jazzing up this would be perfect.

As yet more talented Artisans join our Guild I'd urge you all to take a look around their shops and see for yourself how many gorgeous things that are listed there.

Have a fantastic weekend!

Written by Lynne of PiratePixieCrew

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

All things Scottish

I'm loving all things Scottish at the moment because The man who is buying my house is a Scot.
We have a few Scottish artists here at Artfire, so I would like to introduce you to them.

First of we have Alibalijewellery she hails from Edinburgh. And she makes some of the most exquisite jewelry. Checkout this really beautiful cuff made from crocheted fine silver wire and fastened with a sterling silver hook. It would be perfect for a special occasion or simply wear it every day!

Next on the list is Trinket.Tree and she is from Fife. I thought this mellow yellow spiral brooch made from pure Merino wool & a raised black & gray hand dyed felt, was perfect for spring. Trinket tree offers Free shipping worldwide on her handmade brooches & FREE GIFT with every order.

And Finally we have TheSheriffsDaughter, another Scottish Lassie from Edinburgh. And she really is the daughter of a sheriff. She is also a solicitor however she says, "Of late I have been finding that beading is far more satisfying than law... " go figure look at these beautiful salmon berry earrings.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Monday Mix

So it's a new week and that brings a new selection of our talented Artfire Europe Guild members to share with you. Clicking the photo will take you to the listing for the item, so if you want a closer look, click away!

Catfluff is the creator of these beautiful African market scene pillow case covers. The Kenyan batik panels are perfectly gorgeous. Catfluff is based in Portugal, but is happy to ship worldwide.

This gorgeous creation is from Ben-David's art studio. The hamsa is made from polymer clay using Millefiori technique. I'm amazed at the intricate detailing. Ben-David family is in Israel and again they are happy to ship worldwide.

This lovely Lavender soap is from Saffron Barr who is based in Cambridgeshire in the UK. This lady makes a whole rainbow of beautifully coloured soaps and is willing to post them worldwide, why not treat yourself?

Oh my, did I enjoy looking around N Rollin designs studio. Her lampwork beads are exquisite. This is another UK seller based in Northumberland, but you can purchase her work wherever you live.

Aren't we Europeans great?! Most of us will ship anywhere, so come and check out our shops. You'll find lots of fantastic pieces that are sure to impress you. I'm unashamedly happy to blow our trumpet because we have truly talented members in our guild.

Written by Lynne of the PiratePixieCrew