Autumn in Michigan 2014

Autumn in Michigan 2014

Today seems like an appropriate day to introduce this year’s Autumn in Michigan sign!  We are having another polar vortex here in west Michigan.  It’s July 15th, and it’s cold and rainy.  I really don’t mind this weather, though, because Fall is my favorite season. This sign will be available in two sizes: 8×10″ and 4×5.”  In an effort to get myself a little more than caught up for Fall (since I always make everything to order and go a little bit crazy trying to keep up), I am going to take pre-orders for these at an earlybird sale price, and they will begin shipping at the end of August!  They can be customized to any state or town. Stay tuned in the coming weeks for the Christmas in Michigan sign, which will also begin shipping at the end of...
What Would You Do…

What Would You Do…

… if you knew you couldn’t fail?  This is a quote my rep, Sue Ross, wanted me to make last summer. I never got around to it.  Then last week, when I was reading old comments from the blog, I found one where she commented that this was one of her favorite ones for a sign. So I decided to make time this week to make a sign out of this...
A Summer Night To-Do List

A Summer Night To-Do List

I really need to slow down a little bit.  Last week I had a little panic attack.  I actually thought it was my heart, but thankfully, it was not.  Fortunately I have an assistant now, and she is making thing go much more smoothly around here!  Cheers to the demands of a growing business!   I do have a summer “bucket list.”  I want to clean out my closet. I want to go to the beach at least one time (since we live all of 5 minutes a way from Lake Michigan and all), I want to go on my dad’s boat at least once, I want to swim in my parents’ pool.  I want to do more fun things with my kids.  I want to have a night out with my friends at least once a month.  I also want to sit outside, listen to the stars, and catch fireflies.  What’s on your summer bucket...
Editorial

Editorial

Our May assignment for Lilla Rogers Studio Bootcamp was an editorial illustration for a magazine article about people who don’t like to meditate. I almost never draw people, so this was a challenge for me!  Here is a link to the class gallery so you can check out everyone’s fabulous artwork: http://bootcamp.lillarogers.com/bootcamp-may-2014-gallery/...
Puppy Update and New Art

Puppy Update and New Art

    Paisley is growing so fast!  I can’t believe it’s been almost a month since we took her home!  She comes to work with me at the shop on weekdays when my kids are at school and my husband is at work.  So far… so good.  She has her spazzy moments, but overall, she is a very sweet, calm puppy.  If you follow me in Instagram, you’ll be sure to find lots more pics of #paisleylittlepuppy! Last week, I ordered some cell phone cases with a new design on them… I’m really hoping to find a good, reliable source that will sell them to me at a decent cost so I can offer them to my wholesale customer, too! My friend wanted me to make this quote into a sign for him.  I kind of like how it turned out!  I’ve never done an elephant before! And I forgot to post about MATS week 4.  Mostly because I had no time to work on my assignment that week… but it should have been my favorite one!  It’s still a work in progress, but last weekend I turned my map of Saugatuck and Douglas into two little tags for the shop.  I’ll be tweaking these as I have time to add more icons.   Until next...
A Stepping Stone

A Stepping Stone

Something I need to remember right now (and always) while I’m taking Make Art that Sells (MATS): Where I am right now is just a stepping stone.  It’s so inspiring to see all kinds of people getting their artwork licensed because of MATS.  It’s a dream of mine!  Although it gets a little discouraging every time I don’t hear back from a company I have sent artwork to, I have to keep in mind that where I am right now is a lot farther than I was a year ago today.  And where will I be a year from now?  5 years from now?  It all kind of comes full circle to the “5” book by Dan Zadra that made me quit my waitressing job in 2011 and open a shop. (here is a link to that story)  Which led to Polka Dot Mitten.  What a weird and wonderful and crazy life it is!   Here is a link to the March gallery for MATS:  See if you can spot my Jell-O pattern!...
Let Faith be Bigger than your Fears

Let Faith be Bigger than your Fears

2014 did not start off very well for my family.  My brother, who was born with a heart condition called Tetralogy of Fallot, had to have emergency open heart surgery.  During his surgery, we found out that my mom’s close friend Sue, my rep for Polka Dot Mitten, had passed away from a massive heart attack. Heart conditions are near and dear to my family.  Mike and I have decided to donate a portion of our sales each month to the American Heart Association in Sue’s honor.  She really, truly made our company grow more than I ever could have imagined. Because of her hard work, our company is continuing to grow even though she is gone. My mom is also working hard on organizing a “Go Red for Women” walk in honor of Sue.  It will go from Saugatuck to Douglas.  She doesn’t have a date set, but it will be sometime once the snow is gone and the weather is warmer.  When we have all the details for that, I will be sure to do a post about it!  ...
March Giveaway!

March Giveaway!

We haven’t done a giveaway in quite some time!  This 8×10 art print on wood can be customized to ANY lake!  And it could be yours!  To enter, leave a comment below telling us what your favorite summer vacation spot is. The winner will be drawn on Sunday, March 9th.  Good luck! There are several ways to earn additional entries to the giveaway! 1. Sign up for the Polka Dot Mitten newsletter by scrolling down to the bottom of the page and entering your email in the signup form. 2. “Like” Polka Dot Mitten on Facebook (if you already like us, mention it in the comment!) 3. “Like” It Is What It Is on Facebook (if you already like us, mention it in the...
Create Your Own Sunshine

Create Your Own Sunshine

I am usually a BIG fan of winter.  I have always loved winter more than summer.  Christmas and my birthday are both in winter.  I was thrilled when we had lots of snow for this past Christmas!  If it’s going to be cold, we better have snow! But now that we are into March, and we have not seen grass since who knows when… I’m actually ready for winter to be done.  I’m pretty sure that the snow piles on our street will be here until May.  We’ve had very few sunny...
sometimes I just want to paint!

sometimes I just want to paint!

Right now, we’re in between assignments for Bootcamp.  I haven’t gotten my paints out in a long time, so tonight, I decided to have some fun and make a mess.  I used the same words and some of the same patterns from my cuckoo clock assignment, but gave it a completely different feel.  I really like how it turned out!  Maybe I should get the paints out more often!...
Rest

Rest

Yesterday was the last day for It Is What It Is until February.  I love my shop, but I’m so ready for a break.  Although I still have custom orders to fulfill, it’s just so nice to have a break from one job and slow down for a little while.  I’m really looking forward to creating new designs, going to Chicago to the gift show, and totally re-doing my catalog for Spring.  Here is a sneak peek of that work in progress: I’m working on lots of new designs for 2014, too!  I have so many ideas, and now I have all kinds of time to bring them to life!!  Polka Dot Mitten gave me some new art supplies for Christmas, so I am all set to settle in for the winter and create! Here’s a very rough draft of one of my new ones.  It still needs a little tweaking.  I (of course) started with Michigan (and it’s filled with polka dots), but all 50 states will be available:   Another thing that will be new for 2014 is my new blog!  My friend Brooke DeBoer of Shining Light Marketing has been working hard on creating a new blog for me that’s more my style! I have designed most of the graphics for it, and she is putting it all together for me.  It will be polkadotmitten.com.  As soon as it’s finished, I’ll post all about...

ABCs and 123s

Here’s a little sneak peek at what I’ve been working on this week: I have been working on a hand written alphabet. My great grandmother, Ruth, had the best handwriting.  She passed it on to my mom, who has beautiful handwriting as well. My mom taught me to write.  In 3rd grade, I remember my teacher letting me show the class how to write letters in cursive. I could spend hours just writing the letters of the alphabet in different ways.  I have always wanted to do something with my handwriting.  So I am creating an alphabet.  I am hoping it will be the first of many that I create. I think my kids may be taking after me with their penmanship, too! Caralyn, age (almost) 9 updates our kitchen chalkboard on a regular basis:And Will, who just turned 7, has great...
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