© Sue Schlabach

Many thanks to Pearly Queen Notebook for bestowing me with the One Lovely Blog Award.

I am long overdue in thanking her and passing on the goodwill to so many other deserving artists and writers.

Pearly Queen makes new jewelry from old. I have huge respect for this. My friend Sara Dakin has tried to teach me this great art (she also shines at jewelry-making and re-making), but I’m not terribly good at it. Go see what Pearly Queen has been making.

As for the award, I suppose when I set out to start this blog two years ago, making it lovely was high on the list. And I’ve aspired to make it have a bit of substance too. Only you can tell me if I’m succeeding there.

I’m supposed to share seven things about myself. I feel like I do that all the time.

In the spirit of NOT being all about me, here is a list of seven people who have inspired me  lately.

1. Jane Cumberbatch: I found her book Pure Style in a French translation (long story) about a dozen years ago. I hunted it down in English and find that it is as fresh and relevant today as the day it was published in 2000. Jane’s other books are just as informative and inspiring. She has a great blog and website—both that she is revamping as we speak. I met Jane for tea at the Victoria & Albert Museum when I was in London last month and enjoyed her company immensely. I’ll share her new web launch when it goes live.


2. Sara Dakin: I just mentioned her. She’s a friend and neighbor. She has a great old farmhouse full of kids, birds, dogs, family heirlooms, flea market furnishing, and thrift store treasures. She manages all this and still has fresh baked cookies on hand almost daily. And they are REALLY good. She makes jewelry from found things and one of these days we’ll get some of her creations available on the ilocollective etsy shop.

Erin Gundy

3. Erin Gundy: Erin is one of my oldest friends but lives far away in northern Ontario. She visited here this summer and reminded me how jazzed up I can get with ideas when I’m in her presence. She is an accomplished photographer, painter, rug-hooker, gardener, and is now an accredited land use expert. ie: Renaissance woman. She lives in a hand-crafted cordwood house which is surrounded by native plants, intensive gardens, and a natural meadow.

Sara Pinto

4. Sara Pinto: We met when we were pregnant. That was 11 years ago. We’ve collaborated on two children’s books here and here (she as illustrator, me as designer), we’ve seen in many a new year, we’ve dreamt up many far-fetched plans that someday will come to fruition. The ocean separates us these last few years since her move to Glasgow, but her phone calls, emails, and visits still fire a spark. Sara writes children’s and young adult books. Check ’em out.

Jim Krause

Dyana Valentine

5. and 6. Jim Krause and Dyana Valentine: I saw Jim and Dyana speak at the HOW design conference in June, and then was lucky enough to share lunch with Jim afterward. Jim and Dyana shared things to do in your daily life to increase your creativity. I felt on track with some of the things, but was stretched and excited by their dynamic presentation and ideas. Paint and draw at your kitchen table! Grab a friend for an art date! Photograph something daily that is part of your routine {but do it with variety and thought}. These were just a few of their ideas. I think of that presentation almost daily as I try to live a more creative life.

7. Each one of you: the ones who stop by to browse and choose to subscribe to 129TwigandVine. If I haven’t reciprocated, it is only because I am in turns overwhelmed and buried beneath a seeming insurmountable amount of email for my job. The personal ones can fall by the wayside during these times. If only I could lay on a chaise and read all day! Pop me an email, or remind me what you are up to in a comment.

© Sue Schlabach

And here are the blogs I’d like to pass the award to:

My Black Book Paris {Paris, London, Scandinavia and beyond}

Helly Belly {Blog of London-based photographer Helen Cathcart}

Just a Smidgen {Recipes and poetic observations of life from Calgary}

Made in Persbo {Sweden through the lens of photographer Carina}

Clementine {From the curator of my favorite shop in Vermont—Clementine}

//Between the Lines // {Clever and imaginative DIY from Pascal in Paris}

Simply Hue {Inspired photography, interiors, life by Vicki in Seattle}