Friday, December 30, 2011

Best wishes 2011 -- Happy New Fortune 2012!

Folk Art Flag, 48"x27", in process, 2011 Georgianne Holland
We are in the midst of many "Lowlights of 2011" news reels in the media. In seeing these, do you feel like I do that 2011 was a very sobering, "knock-the-wind out of you" kind of year? I'm speaking on a global scale here, which of course is where we all live. With this in mind, for my last post of the year, I'd like to wish 2011 all my best.

I am a natural-born optimist, and because of this, I am looking forward to 2012!

I know that there will be a lot of news coverage from Iowa next week, where grown men will argue and degrade one another, and call it a job interview. I'm going to keep my optimism anyway.

I know that as an American living in the beautiful state of Colorado, I am extremely fortunate each time I lay my head on my pillow and kiss my husband good night -- and then again when we both wake up in a warm, peaceful home -- we are truly blessed. I am going to be optimistic about our situation and lift up others in their daily life. I'm going to wish happy good fortune to families around their world in their daily lives in 2012.

Peace on Earth -- Goodwill toward All
I am also an optimist as an artist, knowing that I am making my living in a field that is often populated with those who call themselves "starving" artists. I am going to continue pursuing my best work, learning new techniques, elevating the quality of my craftsmanship and design, as I also look to forge new friendships with my clients and collectors. I've never done well with the starving-thing anyway.

I send my best wishes to you, oh historic 2011! It is time for you to come to a close. I choose to think about all the positive happenings of the year, at least as much as I think about natural disasters and bad decisions. I will put my focus on what went right with the belief that we get more of what we think about. And I think about chocolate, a lot.

As Will Rogers said, "Don't let yesterday use up too much of today." Amen

Happy New Year to each of you and thank you for your support of Nestle and Soar Studio. I know myself to be truly blessed.

Thanks for stopping by,

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Embroidered Pillows at Nestle and Soar Studio

Folk Art Flower Pillow on linen, Georgianne Holland ©2011
When I was a young woman setting up my first home, I didn't really know what I was doing, but I did know what I wanted: a superior home with elegant decor.

This was a tall order for a time in my life when my furnishings consisted of hand-me-downs and cinder block/pine board bookshelves!

The dreams of youth are a great way to start building a life, and over the years, I have learned to make home decor as well as learned how to earn money to buy the wonderful decorative elements that grace my home. One good example of this is the hand embroidered pillows I make at Nestle and Soar, like this Folk Art Flower Pillow. My taste in home decor now leans more toward finely crafted fiber folk art than it does anything gilded or elegant, and in my way of thinking, this is superior in every way!

The wool felt circles used in this decorative pillow design are stacked and hand-embroidered. The bright colors are very popular in home decor today. This design is my fun take on the ever-popular Penny Rug design in folk art, where concentric circles are hand embroidered into delightful designs. I've added bead work and buttons to some of the hand embroidered pillows I sell in limited edition at Each month I offer a unique assortment of colors, types, and sizes of decorative pillows. 

Spring Tree Needle Felt Pillow, © 2010
Do you also dream of decorating a first home or redecorating your long-loved home for the new year? My clients are stocking up on decorative pillows and pillow covers that reflect their love of nature. I've seen this same trend everywhere! What isn't everywhere are handmade bird pillows and tree pillows that are handmade in America in limited editions. Making special home decor using time-honored needle art skills is the joy of my professional life as a fiber artist! That is also one of my favorite ways to focus my Needle Felting fine craft at Nestle and Soar. The handmade bird pillows and tree pillows I create come in ever-changing designs and are an absolute thrill for me to create!

Setting up a home is not new to me, and perhaps it is not new to you, either. Do you agree that sometimes, it is not the big-ticket item that makes a home cozy and special, but instead, it is the little things that make home comfortable...and that works whether you are making your home feel superior for the first time or the 100th time!

Thanks for stopping by,

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Releasing clutter from our home and our mind

As I will be spending more time today decorating our home for the holidays, the topic of clutter of the home and the mind is a bit comical. This time of year, it seems that life is cluttered with things, obligations, and if you are like me, a half-finished project in almost every room!

This is also the time of year when I begin thinking about what I'd like to do better (or perhaps stop doing) in the year ahead. Making resolutions has not worked well for me, but thinking through my situation always seems to have rewards.

The clutter in my mind is actually more of a problem than the pile of unwrapped gifts or mismatched socks. When do thoughts tip the balance and become clutter?
  • We've always done it this way!
  • I dread doing this, but I said I would, so I will.
  • Who would I be without "my story"?
  • I couldn't live without [fill in the blank] in my life!
  • Some force on my part is necessary to speed up the process.
  • I'm not sure God can handle this...It is time for some supportive worrying.
  • If I could just fix this one thing about myself,  life would be perfect.
  • If I could just fix this one thing about [fill in the blank], life would be perfect.
It is important to me that the creative process of my Nestle and Soar studio be safeguarded, and perhaps you, too, have a creative life that can become bound-up with physical and mental clutter. As I make my plans for a prosperous, healthy, and joy-filled 2012, here are my clutter-busters for the new year:
  • Try a new technique or use a new material in my folk art every month.
  • Say yes with enthusiasm to only the projects that are exciting to me.
  • Take time every day to listen to the hopes and dreams of other creative people.
  • Give away art supplies and materials I do not use.
  • Trust in the creative process and when I feel rushed, take a walk around the block.
  •  Notice moments of supportive worrying and call a friend to chat (or roll over and whisper in husband's ear). Create a quiet corner in my studio for reflection and meditation.
  • There is nothing that needs to be fixed, as nothing is broken. Trust the creative process.
  • People are not gracing my life as projects I'm supposed to organize. Write down three things I am grateful for about each person I decide to judge. When I feel judgmental about a fiber folk art project I am working on, set it aside for 48 hours. Laugh.
I hope that the next two weeks of your life are cluttered in just the right ways! I'm proud of the mess I'm making all around my home and folk art studio, for as my son use to say, this mess is a Sign of Life!

Thanks for stopping by,

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Green Luxury Items created by Fiber Artist, Georgianne Holland

Near Boulder, Colorado, at the foothills of the Rocky Mountains in her Nestle and Soar Studio, fiber folk artist Georgianne Holland helps birds and trees come to life from a deep pile of soft merino wool. Fuzzy piles of wool roving cover every horizontal surface, and are the material used by this folk artist to depict the natural beauty of birds and trees. In this color-saturated fiber arts studio, she creates original handmade home décor items, green luxury items, for sale on her newly launched website,

Nestle and Soar appeals to consumers because the energy of nesting at home and gliding above the fray is a long-held dream for many. Folk art has always been an avenue for self-taught creative types to make useful objects that are decorative, and Nestle and Soar is certainly part of that long tradition. If you speak to Georgianne for any length of time, you will hear her say that everyone deserves the chance to nestle and soar. That has certainly happened for this passionate entrepreneur.

The fiber art created by Holland is also rooted in thousands of years of tradition: creating useful items from the fleece of animals has helped humankind survive harsh weather as well as make home more special. Georgianne said, “I have always felt the energy of homemakers and other creative women. I truly believe that the needle arts are a valuable skill that should still be celebrated in American culture. I believe there is great power in the home arts. As with this art form, the work of women’s hands will always be important. However, needle arts like the craft of needle felting have never been just for women.” These historic needle art skills are newly popular with many, and fiber artists around the world celebrate the decorative nature of this heritage fine craft.

The Nestle and Soar website features the designer pillows and folk art for the wall created by Georgianne Holland, and also features bird and tree-themed green luxury items by other folk artists and fine craftspeople. “I am proud to make this website a venue for bird- and tree-themed fine crafts.” Hand-thrown pottery, hand-pulled woodblock prints, and hand-embroidered winter-weight scarves, are among some of the treasured items featured on this new website.

Georgianne has also joined forces with the Arbor Day Foundation so that she and her customers can have a tree planted in a National Forest in honor of their purchase. “This joint effort celebrates the many friends I have made through my work as a fiber artist—friends who also adore the beauty of the natural world and help create the loving energy that is part of every transaction from Nestle and Soar.”

Georgianne Holland, fiber folk artist and writer, began her career as a family member in the profoundly popular Leman Publications, the kitchen-table creation of her parents, George and Bonnie Leman. Beginning in 1969, the Lemans published the world-renowned Quilter’s Newsletter Magazine in Wheat Ridge, Colorado. Perhaps one of this family’s greatest contributions in their 30+ years in the quilt industry was their mentoring of female entrepreneurs who went on to breathe new life into what became a thriving industry and economic opportunity for thousands around the world. Georgianne believes in the personal connection between herself and her Nestle and Soar customers, a lesson she learned from her parent’s example. This creation of community fuels her work with featured artists as well as her support of the Arbor Day Foundation today.