About Me

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The beautiful Pacific Northwest
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I am artist of texture and color. I enjoy working with textiles, mixed media and the graphic arts. I am an avid cottage gardener with a love for pass along plants and big fluffy pink peonies and pink roses. Many of my tangible creations reflect my love of the garden and all its wonderful colors. I am not one who will settle for neutral colors as they bore me. I have been selling my creations online since 2002 beginning as a hobby and 10 years later my art is my full time passion.
Visit my website at http://MarionberryCottage.com
I am a regular contributor to http://ShabbyLaneShops.com magazines

26 October 2009

Ellen Clapsaddle..a tribute


You see her art everywhere. You know it is vintage and she painted sweet faces of children and inviting scenes for almost every holiday. But just who was Ellen Clapsaddle?
I was recently at an artisian group meeting where I was working on some gift tags with Clapsaddle images. Someone inquired-- how old is that image on that gift tag you are making? I had to guess, well, it must be some where before 1925???
So I decided to "google" Ellen Clapsaddle. I found a remarkable story as well as a very sad ending to this talented artists life. I have pasted exerts from an web article here.

Ellen Hattie Clapsaddle (1863-1934), born in New York State, is among the best and greatest female American illustrator/commercial artists of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Not only is her style greatly admired and well recognized, today she is recognized as the most prolific souvenir/postcard and greeting card artist of her era

Ellen started out as an art teacher, and doing freelance work for wealthy families. In 1901, the International Art Publishing Company also offered her a paid 2-year trip to Germany for her and her mother. While in Germany, she refined her art talent by working directly and closely with the German engravers who were the actual manufacturers of the products offered for sale. Her designs started to appear in various forms like Valentines, souvenir/postcards, booklets, watercolor prints, calendars, and trade cards and other objects in the world of advertising.

She returned to New York around 1906. It is said that she established the Wolf Company backed by the Wolf brothers--a full subsidiary of the International Art Publishing Company of New York City. She was the first and only female souvenir/postcard artist of the era to establish her own enterprise. She was the sole artist and designer for this company.

At that time, few women were even employed as full-time illustrators. For 8 years she and the Wolf brothers enjoyed their success and there seemed to be no limit to the growth potential in the souvenir/postcard industry. (Some sources suggest that she was employed by the Wolf brothers). Nevertheless, confidence in the boom and high return in profits in this specialized area of commercial art during this boom period, led her and her partners to invest heavily in the years that followed in many Germany engraving and publishing firms. She returned once again to Germany to work with the engravers and publishers they used because they had the best printing plants.

The postcard and greeting card business was doing well, and Ellen was making good money most of which she invested in German printing firms.



By 1914, the war broke out. The majority of the souvenir/postcard publishers in the United States depended on German supplying firms but once they became disconnected from them, they had to go out of business. Many German factories suffered total destruction from bombings and all of Ellen's recent original artwork was lost along with the investments in those firms because of the destruction of the records and messages going back forth between the continents that never arrived or were never answered. Ellen was totally displaced and could not be found. She was penniless, lost, and alone in a far away land in the middle of the turmoil of the First World War.

By 1915, many firms in the United States, like the Wolf Company, did not have a business any more and in their case, their sole designer-artist was lost in Germany.

Although the United States did not enter the war until 1917. Between 1914 and 1919, Ellen was trapped and unable to leave the country. The end of the engraving and publishing industry in Germany came about suddenly and so did her livelihood and her future--so did her life and spirit and desire to live as she witnessed and suffered the war first hand.


With the end of the war in 1919, nothing was known about Ellen's fate in the United States. One or two of the Wolf brothers borrowed money so they could go to search for her in Europe. She was finally found six months later. By then, she had had a complete mental breakdown as a victim of the war, wandering through the streets, hungry and sick, and her health and spirit were totally broken-- she was only 55 years old. When the Wolf brothers approached her, she barely recognized them so disconnected from the world and reality. The Wolf brothers brought Ellen back to the United States.

Because Ellen was an only child who had never married nor had children of her own, she had no close relatives. Furthermore, she had spent all of her time and productive years dedicated to her artwork and there was no one to take care of her under those circumstances. The Wolf brothers took care of Ellen as long as they were able and alive but they too died destitute and poor. When they passed on, she was left penniless, alone, unable to work, and mentally incapacitated. She had lost the ability to make a living and her deteriorating health rapidly became a major obstacle.

She was admitted to the Peabody Home for the elderly and destitute on Pelham Parkway in New York City in January of 1932. One day short of her 69th birthday in 1934 she passed away. Like many residents of the home who had no relatives, she was buried in a potters' grave. She died totally destitute through no fault of her own just like the Wolf brothers--innocent victims of the world tragedy of the First World War.




I am sure Ellen is smiling down from heaven knowing that her art has endured and is loved and collected by so many. I for one, truly appreciate her incredible talent. Help yourself to any of these images!

to read the entire article you can find it here



21 October 2009

who's this cutie patootie???

this is baby granddaughter Lynsie, and
she is about to turn two years old!
she is practicing to be a big sister now....


she took a trip to the pumpkin farm
on a recent sunny day,
and was quite particular about which
pumpkin suited her


But finally a decision was made!




20 October 2009

French Cottage with a tropical twist...

I recently redecorated our master bedroom. Now this room is especially challenging. My other half in our home~Jim~ knows I love pink, but draws the line on lots of flowers in my decorating. So we compromise. I live with most of my pink roses in my studio, my garden and my dreams! His guns and hunting things are in his shop. It works.

We have this beautiful bedroom set~made by Stanley~a Victorian reproduction that we have owned for about 15 years. Victorian style screams to have lots of lace and roses, but I had to find a balance where I could love it and so could Jim.


As you can see there are still some flowers*chuckle* but subtle. I call this Victorian French cottage with a tropical twist style! And I literally did this redo on a shoestring budget! Most of the fabric I used was fabric I already had. The art on the walls was on clearance or I picked up at a off price store. The quilt was on clearance too! The lamps from TJ Maxx, The green toile side drapes were from Ross, the center drapes from a piece of fabric called Waverly Malibu Palm (hence the tropical twist) I stitched all the pillows and pillow shams except for one which was almost an exact match to the lamps. The total redo was less than 200 bucks!

I hope you enjoyed~sorry my pics are not that great. It was hard to get the coloring right. The first pic is probably the most accurate of coloring.

...an now on to the master bath....

16 October 2009

a new look and a new format...

When seasons change, for me it is often a time of reflection of what can be done better. Sometimes change is good! A less summery background and banner, but I still have to have some pink no matter what time of year. I also have decided to no longer mix my personal blog with business, as I think I may confuse many with all I have going on with my website, my graphic art biz and my etsy shops, all with different names...I actually had some of my bloggie friends tell me they were confused!

So on that note....I have set up a biz blog named Marionberry Cottage, (the name of my web biz). There I will feature new projects, new listings, sales, specials, etc. It's gonna be all biz over there, so I will be able to bring you the latest buzz, and I will feature some other sellers that I think you may be interested in too. You can "swing over" there by clicking on the badge at the right. Make sure to follow me there too to get the latest scoop.

Now, for this blog, it is here to stay! I am going to focus on the other side of me and just what makes me tick! Most of you don't know I am Star Trek fan:) --now you do LOL. I plan to share the non-biz side of my travels, fab finds ,family, friends, cottage garden and my passion for pink roses. So much to share, and I hope to be blogging more often
see you soon!

11 October 2009

........and the winners are....

Oh what fun!! There were over 70 entries for this giveaway!

There were actually 2 giveaways offered--one for my
blog land friends and then a separate
one for the subscribers to my website mailing list.
PLUS
I gave away four second place prizes, that consist of
a Victorian Christmas ornament and a gift certificate
to use at Marionberry Cottage.com

Here is a list of the winners
If you see your name here and did not get an email from me--
shoot me an email from your end!

1st place winners
Dawn of Merced, CA.
Mary Ann of Hamburg, NY

2nd place winners
Debra M. of Chandler, AZ
Cheryl L. of Sonora, CA.
Melinda R--Ft Worth, TX
Holly D. of Pearlsburg, VA

Congrats to all!
~and thank you everyone who left such lovely comments~




...stay tuned....a change is coming on my blog.......

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