Staycation and Creativation

I’ve lived in Arizona since 2002 and on occasion I complain to my husband that even though this is the second place where I’ve lived the longest I never quite feel like I fit, like I am at home.  There are many reasons for it and one of them I only realized this week.  See I’ve never been a ‘kid’ here to explore around carefree with no demands imposed by work, family, kids…..  I’ve always had to work and whenever I am off we explore with a set goal in mind: lets visit Jerome, Flagstaff, Yuma, Tucson….let’s go to this lake, that park, this historical site….So it has always felt like a place I am at with all these obligations, always watching the time, always having to be somewhere at a specific time.

This last week I took vacation while the kids had school and my husband had to work.  It was so great!!  I need more of it.  I took the week off in order to attend Creativation – the super mega show put on by the Association for Creative Industries (formerly Craft and Hobby Association) where major craft companies and designers gather and retailers are able to see what new products and trends are coming up this year, pre-order merchandise and get discounts.  The first time I attended was a few years ago in Anaheim, CA.  I am so lucky that this year and all the way up to 2022 the show is in my own city.  Yay!

I go for inspiration, for checking out new tools, learning how to use them, for seeing demos, for making new friends, new connections, for growing creatively.

I attended a few seminars.  My favorite ones were:

Kathy Cano-Murillo (aka Crafty Chica) – she talked about Dia de los muertos celebration and crafts.  Many people mistake it for Halloween but these are two distinctive holidays.  You can read more about it here.

Lee Kellogg – I walked in on the very end of Lee’s talk (darn parking) but she had shared inspiring watercolor journals with her impressions from travel and vacations to simple things like walking through your neighborhood and noticing things that you can only notice on foot.  Lee owns a store in Santa Fe, NM and since we do like to road trip there often I want to check it out next time.

I tried to sit on a couple of talks on social media, blogging, content creating….but….I am not so sure why the subject itself bothers me.  It feels like a popularity contest, but then there are rules of the game run by a computer algorithm and you are trying to keep up with both.  So I took some notes and what I got out of it is that I need to do more videos.  And…I will (sigh).  I am really really really going give it my best.  Not for the sake of gaining followers or beating an algorithm to be on top of Google search, but because I’ve enjoyed watching quick ‘how to’ videos and on occasion I’ve taken a few online classes that have helped me sharpen my skills without breaking the bank.  And if you didn’t know I do have a few online classes myself hosted on Skillshare.  You can check them out here.

Even though I ended up going back to the show three days in a row, I was so immersed in watching, making, feeling that I hardly used my phone and sadly I only have a few photos.

The photo below I took to show my daughter.  She is 9 and I can picture her in the pink fuzzy furry jacket in the photo.  She is just starting to get all fashionable, she is picky what she wears and if you leave her to dress herself she picks the most eye catching, shiny, bright clothes.  I can see clothes alteration in my future because of her.  This was at the booth for Cousin featuring a DIY and lifestyle social media sensation person Lauren Riihimaki.  I’ve actually never heard of her.

Creativation 2018

Creativation 2108

Yarn makes me all happy inside.  Although most impressive yarn projects take a lot of time and not something I would involve myself into, but crochet is my first love…the first craft that I got really good at and helped me get on my creative path.Creativation 2108

This apron (below) was in one of the Tim Holtz booths.  This is something that I’d make in my earlier crafting days, the vintage-found look, scraps of this and that, sepia tones.  I do love that esthetic still, but I tend to create with brighter colors.  I need that pop of super bright red or blue or green….or magenta, orange, pink….

Creativation 2108

This display of miniatures (below) by Dress My Craft got me excited.  My daughter has a doll house and often she creates food and nick-nacks for it.  I even took a selfie by their booth to enter a drawing…but I forgot to share and tag on Instagram, there goes my entry!


I stopped to see my friend Ken Oliver and his amazing Color Burst watercolors.  He’s got so many yummy colors now I want them all.  If you have not tried Color Burst you have to.  It’s like magic.  You don’t even have to be good at watercolors, the colors themselves do the work.  Sprinkle (they are powder), spray water and watch a universe unfold in front of you.  He also has new ink pads and made this journal cover for me.  I scored a few samples of his new colors and I can’t wait to mess with it.

Ken Oliver Color Burst

So that’s about all the photos I took.  I have a few projects in mind that I will be sharing soon.







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