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Going Bananas

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Banana art is pretty a-peeling.

We have all heard of ice carving and pumpkin carving. Have you ever heard of banana carving? There is a man in Japan named Keisuke Yamada, who is an electrician by day, but by night he is a master banana artist. He can turn a banana into a dragon, a movie character or a pistol. His tools: a toothpick and a spoon. His masterpiece is completed in about an hour’s time. read on

Aunt Jane


Jane Hesler, also known as “Aunt Jane” to many, is a recent retiree (48 years) from the Wilson Sporting Goods factory in Ada, Ohio, a farm town located an hour south of Toledo. When she was 19 years old, she wanted to buy a car so she decided to leave her bakery job for a higher-paying job at the Wilson factory sewing footballs used in the N.F.L. Take a look at this video highlighting the tradition of sewing footballs and Aunt Jane’s life making them for the NFL and Superbowl.

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Artistic Roots

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Taylor Design’s Stephanie Mullins Baumer certainly has them.

In June of this year, there was an article published in the Stamford Advocate honoring the 75th Anniversary of the Merritt Parkway (CT 15). The article centered attention on an artist who calls her collection of paintings “The Merritt’s Canopy.” As some of you may or may not know, each bridge on the Merritt is different—no two are alike. “In 1991, [The Merritt Parkway] was named to the National Register of Historic Places. Just two years later, it was honored as a State Scenic Road. By 1996, it was designated a National Scenic Byway by the federal Department of Transportation. And then, the National Trust for Historic Preservation placed it on its 2010 list of America’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places.” read on

I Love Etsy

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Those of you who are not familiar with Etsy have no idea what you’re missing out on! Etsy is an online market used to buy and sell all things handmade or vintage. And, it is the most amazing place to go on a shopping spree! When shopping on Etsy, you are supporting independent artists, designers and crafters. You can shop at “stores” based in countries all over the world. I purchased a pair of beautiful, gold, crocheted earrings that came all the way from Israel. read on

More Fans of Duct Tape

Duct Tape

Believe it or not, duct tape is the latest crafting craze. My brother-in-law stopped by our house the other night and in his hand was a hardware store bag filled with rolls of duct tape that had been left on our front step. Whose was it? My youngest daughter just went back to college, so it couldn’t be hers. I figured one of her friends had left it for her to use for packing. But when I asked her, she said the tape was for her friend’s little sister, who was supposed to stop by and pick it up. What does a 9 year old do with duct tape? Apparently, it is really popular with all the kids in town. They use it to make bracelets, picture frames, hair bands, you name it! I was curious, so I Googled duct tape and I was surprised by all the beautiful colors and the many “Ducktivities” that one can engage in. Who knew?

Let’s Play Ball

Houston Colt 45s and Phillies

I once read that the five principles of effective logo design are as follows: make it simple, memorable, timeless, versatile and appropriate. I am not sure what principles were followed when these Major League Baseball logos were designed, but as anyone can see, they should have been viewed as 1, 2, 3 strikes your out! I would like to share with you some of the worst logos in baseball history. For a short time in the 1950’s, the Boston Red Sox identity looked like an ugly Christmas stocking. How about the Houston logo—was this appropriate for America’s favorite past time? Management apparently thought so, as they used it for three full seasons. The Phillies’ logo looks like an ad for a fish ‘n chips joint. I do, however, take issue with one logo on the “worst” list. It’s the symbol of my favorite team, the New York Yankees. It’s not ugly. In fact, it’s a symbol of elegant understatement. And true to timeless principles, it is simple, memorable, timeless, versatile and appropriate. Let’s go Yanks! If you would like to see more examples of baseball’s unique history, visit The Bleacher Report‘s article “MLB History: Each Team’s Worst Logo Ever.” read on

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