From the Editor’s Desk: Christen Olivarez on Somerset Studio

November 8th, 2012

Artwork by Paula Bogdan

We are joined today by our wonderful editor-in-chief and director of publishing, Christen Olivarez. She’s here to give you a sneak peek at this month’s issue of Somerset Studio, our flagship publication that is well into its 15th year of production. Somerset Studio features mixed-media artwork from extraordinary, talented artists from around the world. A go-to source for paper crafting instructions for new crafters and professional artists alike, this publication always includes a stellar repertoire of projects, business tips, and creative inspiration.

We’re celebrating this milestone with a peek into the current November/December issue. Take a look at Christen’s favorite features, and help yourself to a good dose of creative therapy below.

It goes without saying that I enjoy putting together each issue of Somerset Studio. Sure, it’s a lot of work to organize art selections, contact all of the contributing artists, have photography handoffs, and proofread, proofread, proofread, but gosh, it’s fun. The November/December 2012 issue, though, was special. It’s very hard to put it in words, so I’ll resort to my go-to method of explaining things: a list.

Artwork by Stephanie Hilvitz
  • Seth Apter’s 5 x 5 Project: I truly feel like this article is like no other we’ve ever published. Perhaps it’s because it was based on a book, “The Pulse of Mixed-Media,” that is like no other. When Seth first contacted me with the idea for the article, I was quick to say “Yes!” to it. I knew Somerset Studio readers would really enjoy having insight into the creative processes of some of their favorite artists.

Artwork by DJ Pettit
  • Artist Portfolio on DJ Pettit: I’ve been a fan of DJ’s work since I began working at Stampington & Company more than five years ago. There is something captivating about her use of color and photography in her work. When I realized we hadn’t profiled her in the magazine yet, I asked Ricë Freeman-Zachery to get in touch with her right away. You’ll be fascinated by her story.

Artwork by Sue Pelletier
  • Playing With Plaster: Have you had the pleasure of chatting with Sue Pelletier? She is as funny as she is kind and talented. The way she incorporates plaster into her work is so imaginative. Her work has such a whimsical feel to it that I can’t help but smile when I see it.
Artwork by Michelle Ward
  • Holiday Projects: I’m just crazy about the holidays. In fact, as I type this, I’m also wondering how soon is too soon to put up my Christmas decorations? In this issue, we share a new take on the traditional advent calendar that will have you saving all of your mini mint tins. When I placed the piece out for art selection, just about everyone in the company walked past it while exclaiming how clever it was. There are also some awesome ideas for ornaments and other décor items inside.

I could go on and on about why I love this particular issue of Somerset Studio, but I think you get the picture. I think it’s one of our most artistically diverse issues, and I’m sure you’ll agree.

Thanks for the recap, Christen! If you’re curious to see more and can’t wait to get your hands on this issue of Somerset Studio, explore more articles and order your copy here.   



Sarah Mixed-Media Art

Artwork by Paula Bogdan We are joined today by our wonderful editor-in-chief and director of publishing, Christen Olivarez. She’s here to give you a sneak peek at this month’s issue of Somerset Studio, our flagship publication that is well into its 15th year of production. Somerset Studio features mixed-media artwork from extraordinary, talented artists from […]

Pearls of Wisdom Caption Contest

November 5th, 2012

We were so happy with your responses to our caption challenges that we’ve got another one in store for you! Take a look at this lovely image by Beth Conklin, photographer and digital artist. What does this stunning artwork bring to mind? Comment below, and we’ll choose a winner at random to receive a copy of the newest issue of Artful Blogging!

Photograph by Beth Conklin

 [This giveaway has ended.]
*Contest open to residents of the U.S. only. Entries accepted until 11/15/12 at 11:59pm. Winner announced 11/16/12.Update: the winner is Deena C! We will be in contact with you in regards to your prize. Congratulations!

 



Sarah Contests and Giveaways

We were so happy with your responses to our caption challenges that we’ve got another one in store for you! Take a look at this lovely image by Beth Conklin, photographer and digital artist. What does this stunning artwork bring to mind? Comment below, and we’ll choose a winner at random to receive a copy […]

Glimpse Inside New November Issues + A Giveaway!

November 1st, 2012

The winter wind might have snuffed out the last porch pumpkin, but have no fear – there are more reasons to be festive this month inside this new batch of November issues. This selection will allow you to explore a new craft (aren’t those dolls adorable?) or sharpen your existing skills (sew a whole new outfit!). After previewing this month’s selection, take advantage of our FREE SHIPPING discount that we are offering exclusively to our blog readers.

Use Promo Code: BLOG1112*

Step inside the world of renowned painters, crafters, and illustrators in this mesmerizing issue of Where Women Create. Hanging lanterns and strings of light bulbs radiate the colorful space of “possibilitarian” artist Kelly Rae Roberts, who gives us tips on being fearless when it comes to experimenting with art. Polly Leonard, U.K. artist and founder of Selvedge magazine, shares her artful journey and the importance of persevering and working as a team. Explore the unique spaces of Sibella Court of The Society Inc, Anahata Katkin of PAPAYA! Inc., and many other creative ladies in this exquisite issue.

Yee-haw! Pull up your cowboy boots because this issue of Altered Couture will spur you towards creative activity. Royal Peasantry’s leather pouch boots are a vintage DIY that stems from the concept of self-defense. Stand your ground with another shoe-inspired project from Melony Miller Bradley that incorporates stamps and paints. Is the dreary weather keeping you inside? Make sure you’re lounging around in style with a satin creation that is definitely runway-worthy. Whether it’s frills and sequins or zippers and studs that catch your attention, you’ll be making heads turn with the wearable garments featured in this fantastic new issue.

Celebrate inspiring stories and captivating photographs with the winter edition of Artful Blogging. Illustrator Dinara Mirtalipova shares her tips for using social media to enhance your blog presence, and Meredith Crawford tells us how reading a book prompted her to start a knitting business and open her first Etsy shop. Susan Najarian encourages artists who are hesitant to make the blogging leap to just jump in and enjoy experimenting with all artistic aspects of the cathartic blogging process. With gorgeous full-color images and invaluable advice from bloggers including Wit & Whistle’s Amanda Wright and Victoria Hudgins from A Subtle Revelry, this issue is a must-have for every blogger’s collection.

Cards, paper crafts, scrapbooking, journaling, jewelry, and wearable art, all in just one issue? Yes, this is true! In this edition of HandCrafted, we are bringing you the best of Stampington’s favorite crafting ideas. Enjoy a spotlight on stamp artist Wendy Vecchi’s stamping artwork and Renee Zarate’s cards with character. Delicious finds come in the form of simply scrumptious scarves, adorable seat covers covered in pockets and bows, vintage Barbie t-shirts, and ethereal bangles. For the crafter who would like to make a hobby out of a bit of skill and a lot of imagination, this is one publication you won’t want to miss.

‘Tis the season for delightful holiday dolls! Enjoy a parade of characters in this issue of Art Doll Quarterly with masquerade figures from Doreen Kassel and magical Santas that will fill your house with holiday cheer. Check out Pippi Longstocking, Anne of Green Gables, Elizabeth Bennet and more life-like dolls that we received for our Book Doll Character Challenge. Artist Adele Sciortino shares the benefits of joining a professional doll organization, and Jack Johnston is back with a tutorial for making pint-sized shoes and boots. With these talented creators leading the way, you’ll be in great hands as you continue your doll-making journey.

This issue of Somerset Studio is nothing short of an absolute stunner. See how our Somerset artists create unique projects with Dina Wakely’s iconic Script Star stamp, and get valuable business advice from Quinn McDonald. Glimpse into the artful world of Anna Dabrowska-Pekocka and find out how she artfully shares the stories she creates in her mind. Find out the scoop on Seth Apter’s 5×5 Pulse Project — and you can check out his new book too! Every issue of Somerset Studio includes free artists’ papers and clip art pages for your crafting pleasure, so don’t waste time, get crafting today.

Want to win one of these issues? Click on any spread, check out the table of contents, and let us know which feature you’re looking forward to reading! One person will be selected at random to receive their choice of magazine.

*Free shipping offer applies to U.S. purchases of the following November 2012 issues only: Somerset Studio, Artful Blogging, Altered Couture, Art Doll Quarterly, Where Women Create, and Handcrafted. Discount code does not apply to items purchased from The Shoppe at Somerset and expires 11/30/12. Contest is open to U.S. residents and ends 11/15/12 at 11:59pm. Update: Our winner is Sandie Luck! We will be in contact with you in regards to your prize. Congratulations!

 



Sarah Glimpse Inside And Sneak Peeks

The winter wind might have snuffed out the last porch pumpkin, but have no fear – there are more reasons to be festive this month inside this new batch of November issues. This selection will allow you to explore a new craft (aren’t those dolls adorable?) or sharpen your existing skills (sew a whole new […]

Stampington Subscriptions: The FAQs

October 29th, 2012

Q: I would like to order a magazine subscription, but your options are a bit overwhelming! Where do I start?

A: So glad that you asked! If you’ve wandered onto our subscriptions page, you can see that we present many options. I’m here to break down the choices you have when you want to mix and match subscriptions of your favorite magazine titles.

RSVP SUBSCRIPTION PACKAGES

RSVP Packages

An RSVP Subscription Package is the most common type of subscription. You will never pay shipping and handling charges when you order these special subscriptions. Isn’t that grand? A selection of our quarterly magazines is available as RSVP Subscription Packages, and some of the titles are as follows (check out the free gift that comes with most RSVP Packages).

Altered Couture: Features embellished and personalized art-to-wear and accessories for all occasions. Bonus gift with subscription: A free issue of Altered Couture, so you get five for the price of four!

Artful Blogging: A collection of visually inspiring online journals that includes heartfelt stories and illuminating photographs. Bonus gift with subscription: A free issue of Artful Blogging; it’s like getting five for the price of four!

Belle Armoire Jewelry: Glittering jewels that double as wearable art take center stage in this magazine that includes step-by-step instructions and full color photographs of the best artisan pieces. Bonus gift with subscription: A free issue of Belle Armoire Jewelry, so you get five for the price of four!

Somerset Life:  Shows readers how to infuse every aspect of their lives with beauty and creativity. Bonus gift with subscription: Set of 12 Vintage Kraft Pinch-Bottom Bags tied decoratively with black seam binding ribbon.

Take Ten: Enjoy hundreds of quick and easy stamped cards and project ideas created in only ten minutes or less. Bonus gift with subscription: Clearly Impressed stamp set featuring versatile French ephemera images.

Where Women Create: Explore the studio spaces of today’s most extraordinary, artistic women in all media.

Where Women Cook: Step inside exceptional kitchen spaces, and try mouthwatering recipes from talented women with great taste.

Q: Are there benefits to ordering more than one RSVP Subscription Package?

A: You bet.  You get to choose from TWO special offers:

(1) Purchase any two RSVP Subscription Packages or subscriptions and receive a goodie bag filled with paper and ephemera and a $10 gift certificate to The Shoppe at Somerset. You can find out more information about this special offer here.

OR (2) Purchase any three RSVP Subscription Packages or subscriptions and receive a $20 gift certificate to The Shoppe at Somerset. You can find out more information about this special offer here.

Goodie Bag filled with an assortment of paper and ephemera

SPECIAL SUBSCRIPTION PACKAGES

Q: What if I would like to subscribe to a title that is only published once or twice a year?

A: Good question! We have a special subscription option for our magazines that are available on an annual or semiannual basis. This Special Subscription package includes your choice of five annual or semiannual publications for one great price. You won’t pay any shipping and handling charges, and receive a $20 gift certificate good toward your next purchase at The Shoppe at Somerset. Browse available titles here.

ADDITIONAL SUBSCRIPTION OPTIONS

Q: Wait a minute – Art Doll Quarterly is a quarterly publication, but it’s not listed in the RSVP section. Why is that?

A: We have a third subscription option that includes Art Doll Quarterly, Prims, and Somerset Studio. These titles are sold at a different price-point than the other magazines, which is why they have their own subscription option. But don’t fear! They come with their own awesome free gifts as well.

Art Doll Quarterly: Shares dolls and sculptural figures made from fabric, clay, wire, paper, and more. Bonus gift with subscription: free Beyond Paper Dolls book – a $24.95 value.

Prims: Become enchanted by the simple beauty and rustic elegance of primitive, folk, and early Americana artwork inspired by a bygone era. Bonus gift with subscription: Set of ten hand-dyed Grubby Tags (they are just darling).

Somerset Studio: Innovation and information for paper crafters and mixed-media artists. NOTE: With Somerset Studio, you’ll save more than $20 off the cover price and have the option to purchase one, two, three, or four-year subscriptions. Each additional year comes with its own set of bonus gifts – from our Vintage Clip Art CD containing more than 300 images to a hand-picked, 25-sheet designer artist paper pack. More information about the incentives offered with each Somerset Studio subscription can be found here.

Free gifts with subscription (clockwise from top left): Take Ten Clearly Impressed stamp sheet, Somerset Life Kraft pinch-bottom bags, Prims grubby tags, and Somerset Studio vintage ephemera clip art CD.

Q: Do you have subscription options for the upcoming holiday season?

A: Ho, ho, ho’course we do! If you decide to purchase two of ANY of the subscriptions mentioned above, we’ll include a FREE French Market Tote – a $12.95 value (see above image). Enter RSVPTOTE12 in the comment box during checkout. Plus, all gift subscriptions come with a hand-stitched mesh bag artfully tied with Divine Twine. Read on for more information on how to gift a subscription.

Q: I just bought a gift subscription for a friend. Do you sell cards that I can send to recipients, letting them know that a gift is on its way?

A. We’re one step ahead of you. When you buy a gift subscription, we will send out a complimentary card to the recipient. Each card is sent in a hand stitched muslin bag tied with Divine Twine (see below image). If your gift is time sensitive, you can download and print these free nifty gift announcements to give your friend or family member a heads-up that a surprise will be arriving in their mailbox. Our Shoppe Manager created this lovely project you can make to artfully showcase the announcement.

Left: Cute gift announcements all tied up with string! Right: DIY Printable Announcement Project

Do you have another Q to add to our Subscription FAQs? Add your questions in the comments below and we’ll answer them! Happy shopping!

 



Sarah Uncategorized

Q: I would like to order a magazine subscription, but your options are a bit overwhelming! Where do I start? A: So glad that you asked! If you’ve wandered onto our subscriptions page, you can see that we present many options. I’m here to break down the choices you have when you want to mix […]

Life by Design: A New Reality Series Starring Artist Lisa Leonard and Family

October 25th, 2012

We were thrilled to find out that Lisa Leonard, fellow creative and Stampington contributor, is getting her own show, Life by Design (Storehouse Media Group). Inspired by her lifestyle blog, this new unscripted reality series focuses on Lisa’s creative life and the challenges and triumphs she experiences while raising two boys, running an online jewelry business, and being everyone’s favorite inspirational blogger.

Lisa creates hand stamped metal jewelry, home accessories, and wedding décor. From whimsical “Fresh Cut” necklaces and classic “Woven Together” earrings to engraved ampersand paperweights and celebratory cake toppers (my personal favorite), these personalized designs are sophisticated, fun, and can be paired perfectly with casual jeans or an elegant dress – definitely the everywoman’s jewelry line.

Take a peek at the trailer below and get a glimpse into Lisa’s artistic life.

P.S. Do you know what Stampington magazine Lisa is reading at the 2:57 mark in the video? Comment below with your guess. One winner will be chosen at random from the correct answers to win an issue of the featured publication!

Lisa’s fantastic blog was also featured in Somerset Life Winter ’12. Get to know Lisa here and browse her beautiful metal work designs here!

Video via Storehouse Media Group

*Contest is open to residents of the U.S. Entries are accepted until 10/30/12 at 11:59 pm. Winner will be announced 10/31/12.

 

 



Sarah Uncategorized

We were thrilled to find out that Lisa Leonard, fellow creative and Stampington contributor, is getting her own show, Life by Design (Storehouse Media Group). Inspired by her lifestyle blog, this new unscripted reality series focuses on Lisa’s creative life and the challenges and triumphs she experiences while raising two boys, running an online jewelry […]