I love to curate content and inspirations most of all.
That’s all I can really seem to do with the blog lately. I’m inspired and in love with many things as always, but don’t have a lot to say.
Stay healthy~ xx
I love to curate content and inspirations most of all.
That’s all I can really seem to do with the blog lately. I’m inspired and in love with many things as always, but don’t have a lot to say.
Stay healthy~ xx
Incense, you either love it or you hate it. That’s what I’ve found in being a lifelong pusher of it!
“Hey, you don’t mind if I burn incense do you?”
Often met with a casual eye-roll or possibly a sure and then, can I put this out? It seems a person either appreciates the presence of it in their home or they despise it because of the sheer invasiveness of the smokey scent. Many times powerfully strong, incense can leave your environment highly fragrant in a matter of minutes.
The process of making herbal incense without the use of salt peter, or even charcoal is actually quite easy. However, perfecting the art is another matter. Perhaps the easiest way is by using a binder commonly called Makko. Makko not only serves as a water soluble binder, but as a burning agent as well. Makko is a natural tree bark from an evergreen tree and contains no synthetic chemicals, charcoal, or salt peter.
Incense began use as an instrument in spiritual practices. With the killer scent it packed in such a small size, it also became a hit with hippies and homeowners everywhere. If you can appreciate the presence of lemony-sweet sodapop in your home, or more commonly a woody-spicy fragrance, you’re definitely a contender for incense!
Now, you can buy incense for pretty cheap just about anywhere that sells fragrant candles. If you can’t find it in your area you’re in luck because there’s an even bigger selection online! Be sure to gaze at the carnival of delicious, handmade incense scents on etsy and imagine the sheer wonder of your home or studio being transported to a fragrant fantasy land!
… but if you wanted absolute control over the fragrance you could make your own as well.
Now, it sounds very easy to create your own incense but the trick is mixing the ingredients correctly so that you get a nice, even burn. Your incense might be too smokey, might not burn properly and could keep going out prematurely.
To begin making your incense (this is the Japanese way), mix an incense base with makko (incense powder), and add some warm water. When using a resin your incense will become more difficult to burn. Therefor you should use resins, like Frankensense, at much lower percentages as the burning agents (makko and sandalwood).
“Sandalwood is common to almost every incense formula, and serves as a wonderful base aroma as well as a burning agent of its own right. If you were making an incense of sandalwood alone, the amount of makko required may be a little as 10%.”
Mix the ingredients into a dough-consistency and knead it thoroughly. Form into cones or sticks (form sticks around bamboo reeds) and Knead the incense-dough thoroughly and form into cones or sticks. Allow them to dry slowly, about a week. Check them to see if they’re dry and enjoy your new incense.
My favorite part about candles and incense is the *aroma*, like most people I adore a waft of delicious fragrance to pass by me while working at my desk. It’s a shame you can’t have them in cubicles! It definitely would have lightened the atmosphere in the slightest way. Especially when there happens to be a microwave area in your office.
Don’t use cheap oils — they can irritate the skin and the aroma can provide no benefit.
You can combine your favorite oils to create aromatherapy benefits *or* just to delight your nose.
Ehehe.. my favorite part of blogging has always been the eye candy.
After seeing this incense design exhibit I *had* to find rainbow incense, cute holders, and well-designed incense packages~
Japanese incense comes in many shapes in sizes, sometimes with especially cute scents and packing like these Cafe Time incense sticks.
Now that you have some great incense to try you might want to purchase a cute handmade holder *or* make your own.
Bowl / Teacup Nab a cute bowl or teacup from the local antique shop or use your grandmother’s you’ve been saving in the attic. Fill it with sand, stick your incense in the bowl — add some to the middle or add in a circle around the center. Light and enjoy!
Holder These leave the most ashes but hopefully you’ll have this in an area where ashes can be easily cleaned up! Create a clay sculpture, be it a cupcake, mushroom or anything you like. Grab an incense and stick it into the (still wet) clay where you’d like your incense to be.. Move the incense around a bit to make the hole a little wider. Remove the incense and bake your holder (or let dry if it is no-bake clay).
Tray The typical wooden (or clay) tray is usually longer than the length of the incense stick, has a little ash dip in the middle and a hole on one of the ends for holding the incense. These generally leave ashes scattered also.
Plant That’s right, I often stick a lit stick right in a big, potted plant.
Best retailing practices state business owners and managers should start planning promotions 1-3 months in advance. That’s why Miseducated has created our ebook How To Plan Promotions.
Please enjoy the digestible advice and good industry tips downloading the first of our up-and-coming ebooks and get inspired to make improvements.
If you’re ready to discuss ways to make your branding or marketing grab more attention in the new year just email or call me for a free consultation.
I’d love to assist you in making your campaigns stand out from the rest!
Our first ebook is our How to Plan Promotions Ebook and you can download it for free by clicking here!
Resin can be a fun hobby or business for the crafty miseducated diva in all of us. The possibilities are endless, allow your creativity to run wild and create pieces that are quite unique and fun. With some initial prepping steps, you can suspend just about any material in resin.
In this basic tutorial I will be casting jewelry pieces with resin, but you can use resin for whatever else you would like to make like paperweights, coasters, soap dishes and many other things. There are even many different types of resin that can be used, for different types of desired uses.
I myself use a two part casting resin that is pretty user friendly. I am a novice at resin, just learning as I go and getting better each time. Its fun and I thought I would share some basic tips and give crafty divas something new to try…cause like me I know with all this creativity you have inside of you, you always want to try something new. So this is something for you gals who are aching for a new creative outlet.
I chose to cast fabric for the purpose of this tutorial. I have played with sprinkles, glitter, and candy before. So I thought I would try something new, so here goes….
Before hand I prepped my pieces of fabric by cutting them a little smaller than mold shape, and sealed them off with mod podge, or you can use an acrylic sealer if desired.
2. Take one of the stir sticks and gently mix the concoction, make sure not to whip as it causes air bubbles. Scrape the sides periodically and mix well for 2 minutes. The mixture will look cloudy at first but this will clear up after resin and hardener are mixed together thoroughly.
3. Take this mixture and gently pour into your other clean plastic cup. Stir gently again for 1 minute this time. The mixture at this point should be clearer than before.
4. Set mixture aside for 5 minutes, so the resin can self-degas. Take this time to clean up a bit and get your mold and fabric piece(s) ready.
5. When ready, pour a little bit of resin into each mold, about a quarter full.
6. Then place cut fabric, right side down into resin. You can use a toothpick to position and press fabric. This will also help remove any air pockets trapped underneath the fabric that can caused some bubbles.
7. Then this is where you will need to practice some patience…let the piece(s) rest overnight or for several hours until cured. You can check if it is cured with a toothpick, this way no fingerprints will be left behind.
What I covered in this tutorial are the basics, but you can get more creative by adding different layers. Below are photos of some layer pieces I created, I hope you find them inspiring.
After your pendants are cured, you can jazz them up by drilling holes, adding jump rings, gluing on bails, posts, brooch settings, what ever you like, let your imagination run wild, its all up to you! Your end result will be beautiful and unique pieces.
A great source of reference and inspiration of mine is a book that I turned to when first approaching resin after multiple searches on Google, a book called “The Art of Resin Jewelry” by Sherri Haab. In this book she goes over in detail all different types of techniques with resin, like the so fun and yummy candy jewelry.
See more in my shop here.
Originally published on 12/08/2009.
Don’t you love it when you type out a whole post and then it fails to ‘Save Draft’?
So I’m back from the 3 week trip the beautiful Uganda. My husband was teaching a course about understanding the culture through the arts. The people and the country were gorgeous. I was so homesick while there at first and now I miss it. We had a layover in Brussels on the way as well, beautiful! I hadn’t been there before. More on the trip later.
I’m really into decor as always but specifically offices — perhaps because I’ve been taking on new work lately and am still midway through organizing my own office/creative lab. So inspiring. These are gorgeous.
You might have noticed in the last several months I’ve been seamlessly combining my portfolio and marketing work with my blog here at Miseducated. This is due to the fact I needed to expand my business hosting account so I decided to combine my efforts and enhance my brand. In a part I can now equally focus on expanding the agency for work as well as continue blogging passion. Below you’ll find a press release of sorts with advice for those looking to expand their brand, build an online presence, and acquire new client attraction.
Miseducated is not just a blog but is also a boutique marketing agency that creates attractive business promotions, attractive brands, and premium web sites. With over 15 years of web design and social media marketing expertise; I understand effective design.
Miseducated offers you innovative and attractive design, captivating imagery and gold-woven copy combined with compelling offers and strategic promotional methods to bring you new client attraction and more attention from loyal clients. If you provide a product or service, I will teach you how to be the next big thing and provide you with a competitive advantage in your marketplace.
Many companies mistakenly implement a fundamental brand and website to save on operating and marketing costs. These website design efforts range from adequate to amateur (from drag and drop to friends and family help) ultimately sacrificing the polished online presence necessary to stand out in a crowd. As you know the field of design is a competitive business with many amateurs claiming they know design and marketing strategies, but when it comes down to it most are not able to deliver.
Business owners upon hiring an unqualified agency or designer soon realize novice web design efforts result in amateur results. They discover the site is not providing a competitive advantage, not attracting new clients, and that their site is similar to thousands of others – a total red flag in all business.
How can you avoid this problem? When hiring a brand designer or marketing agency you should be served with an initial consultation as well as a roadmap that outlines the specific actions you and your company will take to out-maneuver peers for needed resources and client retention. There should be measurable goals within the plan so you can be sure your new design and marketing strategy are serving your company as planned and moving your organization forward. A professional can translate the essence of your unique business into a savvy, engaging website and online brand.
In short, The right website will show off your business and allows you to reach out to new customers and stay in touch with current ones. So, ask yourself today, if your website is a true reflection of your business then what is your website reflecting about your brand?
Look in my design portfolio here for some examples of marketing design.
Because I can never decide which one is better so all of my pastel-coated paintings always have a little hot pink strewn through-out and same for my collages. Why choose one when you can have both? Have a hot pink Easter.
Easy Neon Hanging Planters Tutorial by Brit + Co
Candy Necklace Inspiration by Love the Day
Chocolate Surprise Egg DIY for Easter
Dip Dye Placemats by Design Love Fest
and lastly a breathtakingly beautiful home office and craft studio to inspire you to design your work space to fit your inspiration ala I Love Crafty:
I sometimes hear I should find something to do when I’m sitting around puzzling over what’s inspiring me in that moment and which way I should move with it (which appears from the outside to be some sort of boredom or stagnation) but is actually me almost in a living/meditating state. I’m taking everything in around me, iI’m imagining and I’m stalling. I don’t usually move fast with new ideas; In fact I usually move so slow that I tire of them before I even get them finished. I also currently favor the idea that in your worst times (most depressed, most angry, most passionate) you make your greatest discoveries about yourself which in turn shells out some pretty brutally honest and amazing work. (ahem, Eminem)
Why is inspiration such a process? And how do you get inspiration? Sometimes.. I’ll admit.. I actually pull the inspiration and motivation to move ahead with ideas from dreams. I dreamt I finally went to Japan to study which let me to finally decide I would study in Japan while in college. I had to do all of the work to get there; my college didn’t really have any programs in Japan in place at the time. It happened! I couldn’t believe everything went as smoothly as it did (this seems to happen sometimes when you follow your heart — things go smooth and easy). They told me to pick several programs and apply because I might not get the one I want, I chose the one I wanted and didn’t even apply anywhere else. I got accepted.
My host family was the most rad family in the whole program because they also just started so they weren’t sure what to expect either and they had a daughter that was just a bit older than me. So that means lots of shopping, events, festivals, sake and karaoke with friends. They are so wonderful and amazing, I’m glad we’re still in touch. Eri, the daughter, and I practically became real sisters (and our bond is exactly the same after all of these years). That little push I needed to live in Japan as the Japanese do was not just a dream anymore, it was a reality.
Some well-known self-esteem experts, such as Jack Canfield, claim that a way of proving you’re on the right path in life: everything, no matter how hard it at first seems (change is often scary), seems to almost come easily and moves along smoothly. Now I’m not saying you’re likely to avoid obstacles if you follow your dreams. Because, in my experience, often times the harder something is to get, the more worth or value it carries. So whether obstacles get in the way or not, always be prepared for them. I’m only saying it feels right.. you just know it’s the way you’re supposed to go. There will likely be obstacles but not impossible ones, rather they are empowering ones.
I also dreamt (No, I do not live in a Dream Castle.) I started a store downtown (dream come true) and a magazine with friends and found happiness and fulfillment in that. I’m an artist and designer first and foremost. When I finally dropped News/Editorial from my major I felt a little remorse, but sadly not enough. Somehow writing was not something I was after anymore, it didn’t feel right anymore. So what did I do anyway? I took heed from my dream and started this mega blogazine that you’re staring at right now. I opened a connected shop and sold pendants, original artwork, prints and the most random handmade gifts. I (sort of) started working towards making that dream a reality.
If fact sometimes dreams you once had come floating back as if reminding you to keep on your journey but to perhaps try another route. Sometimes to become who you want to be you have to re-harness some of your past, favorable qualities that you let fall to the wayside. For instance recently I was obsessing over these more recent prints and images I was creating (never released) and now I’m considering listing them at the store here. They were pre-falling-down-the-rabbit-hole-again stage but became a pretty big series in my life for awhile and I actually enjoyed creating them a lot. I found again that I work well with dolls as models and I decided to mix typography in more like my web-based designs thus furthering my interest in print making once more. Finally.
Some other ways I get inspiration are as follows:
Japanese fashion and interior magazines, vintage woman’s magazines, 20s records, having a cup of black coffee or almond tea to get re-energized, taking a bubble bath with or without a book or candles and champagne, looking through my photo albums, looking through my record collection, hanging out with family & friends, taking a walk, swinging, carrying my camera, listening to electro, writing in my journal or any nearby notebook, getting out a pencil and a blank canvas and, most importantly, love and kisses from my husband and daughter. Every time I have genuine bonding time with my daughter I get an instant dose of inspiration.. I guess that’s why I tend to stay up quite late after her bedtime to work.
So want to pump up the process of getting inspiration by reading a few tips about gaining inspiration from other artists? That’s exactly what I had in mind. Also remember I always ask our featured artists to explain where they get inspiration from.
Four Steps To Finding Inspiration, From An Idea DJ – I especially like the idea of video art, collaging video clips with music and/or audio.
50 Ways to Find Inspiration – I’ve done a lot of these and found some of them that I’d actually like to try. There are tons of great ideas here. I really liked: 31. Ask someone you love what they consider to be the most important thing they’ve ever learned., 34. Ask your parents to tell you what you were like as a child, and remember what mattered to you then. and 40. Spend time with children and see the world through their eyes.. Very positive and inspirational.
16 Ways to Get Motivated When You’re In a Slump
So I’ve been sketching so much more since I began living with the man of my dreams and realizing life can be comforting in transition, fear, sadness, happiness, ecstasy, extreme business, security, and overwhelming tasks lists. Sometimes those sketches are finally turned into illustrations by yours truly and other times they are filed, colored by the kiddies or lost and tossed. This one made it through to the other side. I was feeling very dark when I sketched this but also very excited about the future, thus she is split into two. Even more curious I died my hair half and half following this drawing. The dark vs cute seems to be a constant theme in my brain.
I’ve also got my digital life getting back on track with the welcome of a new computer to the office, my new lovely laptop (little MacBook Pro) which was a gift from Mistereducated. It is so happy to both work with me and snuggle in my still-in-the-plastic Lamb case that was gifted to me years ago. Such a princess of a laptop. She runs runs runs and keeps my eyes happy with a screen that is so decadent and color rich like a Japanese candy store. AH! I was so behind.
Also many more blog goodies are coming along.. I was forced by slight-OCD to organize my Gmail via Imap in Mac’s Mail app (if you need any help with this I have ultimate tips as I ripped quite a few hairs out in frustration). I had (no joke) a bit over 100,000 mails that needed to be organized into folders so I could have an empty inbox and get on track. I was living like a computer file hoarder. Mister even got me an external hard drive because like a hoarder I put off organizing my files and deleting un-needed files for so long and now every file I’ve ever cherished (except for that time in the 90s when my old PC crashed and lost all my files) is organized and neat on the hard drive. Such a relief! Everything is smooth sailing on candy seas. So alas, I have not forgotten about or misplaced your emails! After my crazy roller coaster ride and life restart I am still getting important items in order but I am now pretty much on top of a cotton candy cloud ready to welcome you for chats, cats and tea. I never forgot about you, I was only lost in the forest for awhile.
Also — I got a pink 3ds for a bit of fun in the meantime and mainly for Animal Crossing because it has always been my favorite game next to Maniac Mansion. If you’d like to be friends just leave your friend code. Mine is: 0662 4261 5265
See you in digital wonderland! XX
It’s been awhile since I’ve posted a Mew for Today because I really was going through a painfully overwhelming period in my life that I am slowly navigating out of. I am happier and healthier than I have ever been before and I owe it to my one true love, spirituality and sobriety. Thankfully as more time goes on I have started feeling very much inspired and overwhelmed with ideas again and I would love to share some eye candy that is oh-so-Miseducated and catching my attention on tumblr tonight…