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Monday, April 16, 2012

No New work ? Why Not?

No new work why not?

Family Cancer scare stopped my work 
My beautiful daughter Liz who was  diagnosed with cancer

Lizs left leg showing bulk which turned out be a DESMOID TUMOR this grew to three times its size after the biopsy
I had a very good year with  my online business funkyfindzonlinel,   selling my recycled art and clothing at least at the beginning  before October , I had been working and posting fairly consistently on my site during the summer while taking my girls to the lake, local fairs and doing me best to make there summer memorable. My youngest daughter Liz had previously had an accident where she injured her foot and had been on crutches  for nearly 3 months. shortly after she recovered this bulge appeared seeming out of nowhere. I mistakenly thought it was a muscle .During the summer I took care of liz and her foot , I waited somewhat anxiously for them to go to school so I could begin to create again. I was excited about doing work for HALLOWEEN a favorite time for me and I several ideas of work I wanted to do  (which I did) I made several bottles or potion jars and finished up one suitcase which I still haven't posted (plan to do , and is on mental list)   
Liz cut  a large potion of her heal in a freak accident in the beginning of April 2011, here she is at Easter , we opted out of plastic surgery and let the heal mend on its own. we wondered if the medicine used on her foot might have caused the tumor to grow, all the Med profession said no way. After she got off the crutches  the large tumor appeared .
Right after school started we went for our yearly checkup at the local clinic where right there and then my life completely changed. I had thought that is the bump in Lizs leg did not self correct during the summer I would have it checked out, it did not  . The Dr. said "mass" ordered an MRI and the fear roller-coaster  rid began . After a serious of unfortunate events , where the radiologist and a DR. told me that Liz had an inoperable malignant cancer , a bad one, malignant schwanoma  , poor outcome. (this was told to me pre biop results however )  the strangest thing happened my work began to sell like gang busters. Cruel joke of fate really.

I could barely think straight at the time, It was so difficult to even package the orders and I was unable to share in any form of joy , or happiness that I would have normally had. Instead it was this horrible burden trying to ship off these large orders during this time of crisis. It was such a blur.I seriously considered closing my shop down at this time. I did however CEASE all artistic work and did not do any posting what so ever, and not for 7 months ! I still have not done any artwork. (hoping purging some of this might help)

Fortunately I had worked for the past few years posting vintage items in my store and I was able to renew my expired listings which kept my shop active. It seemed that my art had taken off sort to speak I was selling on or two items a week! My husband was out of state at the time that my 11 year old and myself were told in a dr.s office that ?I'm sorry I cant tell you its begin" I was numb. the cancer they "diagnosed" was a nasty one, prognosis , for as big as the tumor was   , was not good. We were looking at possibly having her leg amputated, a word that was freely thrown around turning numerous Dr.s visits.
To my great surprise my etsy store continue to produce sales, even though I was unable at times to even check it. I have an EVO phone with a bookmark of my store and I would check on that to see if I made a sale or not and then would try to muster up the strength to pack it together. 
WI Dr.s wrong! Pathology from TEXAS said non malignant !
After numerous trips to different Dr.s (in WI to MN) a month later we learned that Marshfeild Clinic pathology  had made a mistake . The radiologist read the scan and wrote in his report that she had this horrible  caner while a sports Dr. (not kidding ) told Liz and I in his office that it was cancer.  It was not a malignant cancer but rather a aggressive Desmoid . Now   aggressive chemotherapy, once a week for a year? (Mayo Clinic children Hospital )  was ordered .Needless to say my life now had been incrementally  altered. Nothing else mattered to me other that my beloved sweet angle of a girl Liz .(She is truly a remarkable child) It was my job to do the very best for her, it became my full time job, not etys nor my art, my housework, nothing mattered but finding what was best for her.
No art , looking for treatment for 7 months My housework went to the wayside, ( shameful how far things can go ) friendships, my appearance (no manicures or trips to the hairdresser) and the last thing  on my mind was revamping or creating new recycled art. I lived in fear, anxiety depression and uncertainty.

It is 7 mounts later and Liz has had surgery were the tumor has been removed. I have started a blog Lizsleftleg.blogspot,com where I wish to write about the crazy process we went threw , what we all discovered about the medical profession and the big money business of cancer coupled with abundant incompetency and the courage of a special surgeon, Dr. David King. for those interested in learning more about our journey. (this blog I have just begun to be able to look at and begin , before it was too painful)
Etsy sellers ...hard work pays offI am slowly trying to put together my life again. I just started posting my long dresses from the 80s (find them here ) I have hundreds that are hanging in my garage , which if I don't start to deal with I may as well give them away.This is the first posting I have done since this ordeal. For etsy sellers , I found however that the 2 years of hard work I put in , really paid off. As I had always worked toward the goal of 1000 items, about 300 of them expired during this time, when I could I would try to renenw at least 10 at a crack. this kept my store relevant (etsy has changed the default search engine to relevant  , meaning renenwed listings have a higher rank than just listed) so I continued to sell.

This gave me hope that I had something to go back to, which I have. Before all this happened I had created the etsy team recycled artists which also continued to grow on its own reaching nearly 600 members to date.

Recycled artist ? Join here

My Facebook page has grown as well but much slower , but the point being that I feel now nearly 7 weeks after surgery that I might get back on the horse again sort to speak . My studio is still a shambles and is on the bottom of the housecleaning list but I am fast approaching it and then I shall tackle my first suitcase since this "ordeal" . I had been very private about this with my social media 'family" . Now I let you who admire my work understand why I had become so stagnant and came to such a screeching halt.I hope to continue with my Halloween work in creating Vampire and witches wedding dress to sell at my sister store  funkycostumefindz


recycled vintage dial phone by C.Reinke RING POP candy wrappers.Kitsch at its best reserved for Emily
Vintage phone with candy wrappers and bling
 One mother purchased this for her daughter for Christmas, Emliy wrote me and asked me to put it on reserve , I loved making this candy wrapper phone , it was so colorful and YES  it works!


RECYCLED vintage guitar case retro 60s groovy flower power design
Groovy guitar case purchase as Christmas gift
Funky Peace German war helmet ♥see transaction here
small hardshell Halloween case ♥see transaction here
HALLOWEEN  creepy baby puppet GREAT prop for your scary costume
Funky halloween PROP  made from old baby throw away
vintage 40s leather suitcase Treat or treat ♥See transaction here

Hand PAINTED 1970s patent leather purse Pin up girl
Hand painted purse pin up girl

Vintage blue Trojan, early 1960s, Marilyn Monroe.  RESERVED for MoniqueAsMarilyn
One of my favorite cases sold to a Marlyn aficionado

Sold to a hair salon, I loved making this piece

♥see transaction here

♥see transaction here  
Vintage wood/leather Collage 1920's Witches Night Suitcase by recycled artist C. Reinke

Marlyn Monroe goes to the circus recycled makeup  case by C. Reinke   REAL MINK on reserve for  Gewn
on a positive note I have great encouragement that my work is in demand and sells! With this I intend to forge forward and post my newest work. First I will get photos up of the suitcase that I did last year right year in Sept right before the diagnoses. thanks so much for your understanding and patience . ♥

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Recycled spooky bottles for halloween

Take your used glass bottles and tins and turn them into a HALLOWEEN spookiness 

COLLECTION OF BOTTLES  and tins that I have recycled into spooky Gothic HALLOWEEN props , great for filling with candy corn or dried herbs

All of them were designed to go together and be stacked

This is made from a tin that is used for stone ground oats made in Ireland. It is quality tin that snaps air tight . I made 2 tins to match and they stack nicely on top o f one another

For the most part I made sure that all the bottles had a skull and cross bones for the universal language of POISON  this also gave the collection a unifying element  

Here are 4 jars in front of my fan drying...they have just a finishing touch of glitter applied to them.

One of my work tables, always a mess I must confess, I work in a frenzy, pulling things, trying it out, then moving on to another project. I made all these bottles in two days simultaneously. While one is drying I would start another .

This is one of my favorite bottles I love the glitter eye ball! I had to go to quite a few stores to get all the pieces I needed to pull off the look I wanted

Here are 4 jars in front of my fan drying...they have just a finishing touch of glitter applied to them.

WHERE DID THE EXPRESSION  eye of Newt come from ? 

This is the well-known incantation of the Three Witches in Shakespeare's Macbeth, 1605:
Double, double toil and trouble;
Fire burn and cauldron bubble.

Second Witch:
Fillet of a fenny snake,
In the cauldron boil and bake;
Eye of newt, and toe of frog,
Wool of bat, and tongue of dog,
Adder’s fork, and blind-worm’s sting,
Lizard’s leg, and howlet’s wing,
For a charm of powerful trouble,
Like a hell-broth boil and bubble.
This is Newt! bright orange , ideal  for a witches potion , but remember only the EYE !

I had recently gone shopping at TJ MAXx and found two amber bottles with stickers on them, one wtich hazel the other Clairvoyance oil , I love them, I wanted more. I could not really find any that were more than just a lable, plenty of labels for sale on line. I went to my local Michael s , hauled out the wallet, I have sold allot of art this week, but that is another post all together, and spent around $200 plus on supplies. Much from Martha Stewart collection. They are very much fun to make, a bit tedious to get them just right and highly additive , in fact my plans for today are to make a dozen bottles that will fit into a suitcase , somewhat of a traveling witches case of potions and poisons.

OOak Halloween KITSCH bottle VENOM and Sweet Treats
OOak Halloween KITSCH bottle VENOM and Sweet Treats OOak Halloween KITSCH bottle VENOM and Sweet Treats OOak Halloween KITSCH bottle VENOM and Sweet Treats OOak Halloween KITSCH bottle VENOM and Sweet Treats OOak Halloween KITSCH bottle VENOM and Sweet Treats
Original design for dressing up your fireplace mantle or kitchen table this glass bottle is dressed up from head to toe! Cute little graphite glitter rats line the base informing you that inside is a sweet, yet venomous treat. Fill with candy corn this is a great gift ! I created a pair for it as seen in the last picture which you can find for sale here.

Entire project is made from quality papers, no digital images used and this design is OOAK , I do not recreate them. Quality contemporary glass jar recycled from my kitchen.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Fun photo-self portrait of suitcase artist and her friend

The suitcase artist got her own bill board!

Yesterday while on facebook I uploaded a new , well it was an old pic of me because I was considering changing my profile pic. I choose one that was black and white of me while I was n Mexico, I always thought it had a vintage feel, like I was the typical 50s tourist, My friend and artist Victoria Pandora quickly but on my wall this art worked photo version of it. Then a few days later she created the image that you see on top, I have made it my desktop background. I have dreams that the realities created by Victoria Pandora are alternative and attainable .

Catherine Reinke Suitcase artist photo by Victoria Pandora

Here is am image that her husband made for her, she is elegant magical and saves the world each and every day . I love her . We have been friends for years, in fact we lived together as co-families while in Sedona Arizona during some very trying times for myself . It was fact that brought us together. I had signed up for a REIKI class, I wanted to get my mastership in one of the most notable alternative health centers in the USA, we were looking for affordable room and board and came across Victoria's room for rent. Our children , her two girls and mine , hit it off.
These are two other works she made for me, my husband and I and my first born daughter Cassy when she was 6

A year and half later we moved with our Winnebago from Wisconsin and parked in her driveway and lived there for about a year before finding our own place.  Victoria, then as now, is an artist, in fact it is she whom I first learned the fine art of decoupage from. I tried my hand at it while there, and found myself clumsy at best. She created beautiful breathtaking furniture, musical instruments and stained glass. Victoria s work can be found at her newly opened etsy store here

The Goddess Victoria Pandora