Interview with Connie Norsworthy, CircleLineStudio

[hLeah]

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Connie Norsworthy of Circlelinestudio lives in Las Vegas with her husband, Lee, and their kids, Sam, Tommy and Mack as well as two miniature Schnauzers, Lexi and Cava. Connie describes herself as easygoing, spontaneous, hardworking and loyal. When she’s not working, she loves hanging out with her family. They all love to travel and explore. She also loves simple things, ‘like a good cup of coffee or the fragrance of a great candle. I also have a bit of a paper addiction, calendars, planners, pretty papers.‘ Be sure to check out her shop, Circlelinestudio.

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On Small Fruits and High Prices

"Mature" Carrots from my Garden

Those sad, tiny excuses for carrots came from my garden. On my knees, fingernails full of dirt I dug them up one-by-one this past weekend. I’d let them go for more than a month longer than their “maturity” date hoping that when I did harvest I’d find something bigger around than my pinky finger. As you can see, I had no such luck.

What you can’t see is that the tomatoes and bell peppers in the background are also bite-sized. My Amish Paste Tomatoes looked more like grape tomatoes and my big, heirloom slicing varieties resembled over-plump cherries more than anything. Slicing would have been futile; we ate them whole instead. The only thing that didn’t seem to suffer this year was flavor. The carrots were as crisp and sweet as ever. They just didn’t last long amounting to less than a mouthful each.

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The Black and White Dress

Whether you’re celebrating this Valentine’s Day with your partner or with your friends, do yourself a favor and leave those pink and red outfits in the closet this year. Instead, wear something classic – a black and white dress – and you’ll be sure to stand out in the sea of lovebirds and perhaps even attract cupid’s arrow. This elegant color combination brings back memories of classic starlets, silent movies, and, of course, romance.

For those with modern tendencies, this black and white dress by elbling is simply stunning. With asymmetrical color blocks and sleeves as well as beautiful draping and a comfortable fit, this dress is both elegant and dramatic – a rare combination. Paired with a few brightly colored accessories, it is an instant classic that can be dressed up or down depending on your Valentine’s Day plans.

If you don’t mind showing off a little leg this Valentine’s Day, consider this gorgeous lace dress by LaBronz. The simple 60s-inspired cut compliments the drama of the lace, creating a classic and romantic look that is sure to catch the eye of your loved one or inspire envy in your friends. The short cut is offset by the 3/4 length sleeves and a simple round neckline, making it a classy choice for your night of romance.

Paired with colorful heels, this a-line dress by aliceanna features a full skirt that’s made to be twirled around the dance floor. The bold black and white fabric is both playful and whimsical while the H-strap back adds a touch of sophistication and romance. The thick black band will highlight the smallest part of your waist and ensure that you look good no matter if you’re dancing to swing or salsa.

The gorgeous photo featured at the top of this post was taken by Amelia Kay Photography.

Z-Town Made, USA

If it’s Monday, it must be time to introduce you to another great new Try Handmade columnist. Today’s wonderful addition is Tara Gentile of Handmade In PA.net fame. Every week she’ll be bringing you Shop Local — the best in handmade from local scenes all around the world.

Do you know of a location ripe for the picking? Does a particular city or district spring to mind when you think ‘handmade?’ If so, leave a tip for Tara in the comments and maybe your town will be next!

:: Erika

~

[hTara]

Before I go exploring the globe for unique handmade finds where you live, I thought I’d share some finds from my own backyard.

Kutztown, Pennsylvania, USA – about 90 minutes northeast of Philadelphia – is the home of Kutztown University, a vibrant Pennsylvania Dutch community, and now the Z-town Made indie craft collective. The ladies of Z-town Made all went to Kutztown University to pursue various endeavors and then spread out into “the big city.” But Kutztown called them back, allowing them to focus on their craft without the distraction of city life, mainstream design, or intense competition.

In addition to the beautiful work below, Z-town Made includes two other crafters: Mary Oswald of Collier Leeds and Jen Lindsay of Clothesline Designs. Mary creates high-end, hand-crafted leather & brass collars for (wo)man’s best friend. Jen focuses on designing for babies & toddlers with tummy-time mats, appliqued onesies, and giraffe softees in beautiful fabrics.

Z-town Made meets weekly to support each others’ businesses, learn new skills, and plan events.

Kutztown is sure to keep cranking out great crafters – the university has a BFA degree with an emphasis in crafts.

Z-town Made - Indie Craft Collective

Clockwise – starting in upper left:
Peacock Feature Necklace – handcut sterling silver – by Karen Stanford of Skylark Studio
Stoplight Placemat Set in Curry, Charcoal, and Cloud – hand-screened on linen – by Sara Smedley
L. O. V. E. Letters – pink embroidery on gold metallic fabric – by Kimberly Scola of chezsucrechez
Hawk Mother Wooden Postcard – original illustration printed on maple veneer – by Melanie Linder of Spread the Love