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Love Rescued Us - Win a Pixie Tee & Custom Dog Portrait!

When Marie first emailed me about doing a pet portrait, I initially thought it would be like any other pet portrait.  Don’t get me wrong—I paint every dog portrait from the perspective of his or her mother’s eyes, spreading, smearing and blending love with every stroke of my brush.  But, as I followed the links Marie included in her email about Pixie and her cousin, Daisy, I realized that this was about more than a single pet portrait.

Marie and her sister, Sheena, started their instagram accounts to raise awareness of special needs pets.  After seeing the pics of Marie and Pixie on their website, Drool of Happiness, their love for each other (and their cause), I knew I wanted to be part of both.  In fact, although we hadn’t met, like a new pair of distressed denim, there has always been something that felt very familiar and comfortable about Marie and Pixie.   Although we (Marie and I) technically rescued our dogs (Pixie and Molly), there is the underlying understanding that they also rescued us.  Having both experienced the power of love through our rescues, it is no wonder that Marie is trying to make the world a better place for rescue pets and the humans that adopt them. 

I guess, in the end, it is not about whether I rescued Molly or she rescued me—love rescued us all.  I think Pixie and Marie would agree.  To celebrate the love, Marie, Pixie, Molly and I have teamed up to do a giveaway!  Pixie and Marie will be giving away a Women’s Peony Pixie Tee and I am giving away a custom pet portrait!  To kick it off, we thought it would be fun to hear from the one that brought us all together—Pixie!  (with a little help from her Mom).  Make sure to also check out Marie and Pixie's post on Drool of Happiness to read about the top 10 lessons I've learned from my muse, Molly.  

Pixe is very expressive and I like to think that our bond is basically out of this world unicorn status that I know what she’ s saying with her little pig like noises. It’s crazy how I feel like we connect better than any dog I’ve ever met. I love being Pixie’s voice to fight against puppy mills and promoting adoption. You know how by simply having flowers in your room, you feel more positive and really do take a moment to smell the flowers. Well that’s exactly what Pixie’s become which is why I knew my shirt design had to include flowers. I hope that Pixie has the same effect on you! For a little chuckle here’s my Top 10 Things Pixie Would Say To Me If She Could Talk. 

10. If you eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner how come I only get dinner?
9. You like go to the bathroom a lot. I only go twice a day.
8. I think you should quit your job so you can give me belly rubs all day.
7. I want a sibling.
6. That thing you call the Roomba is so frightening!
5. Thanks for introducing me to your family. I never had one before I met you.
4. Even though Daisy's wheels scared me at first, I think if we were to duel it out wheels/underbite vs mobile/toothless, I would win since I've been working out. 
3. Thanks for fighting against puppy mills on my behalf. I think they suck too and if I could have thrown my rotten gross teeth at them, I would have.
2. The date you adopted me was the best day of my life.
1. I love you more.  


Everyday I'm Hustlin' and you can too!

DIY, do it yourself, banner, tutorial, DIY banner, Free Tutorial, DIY tutorials, Home Decor
Sometimes we all need a little reminder to hustle with all our heart right?  Here, I'll give you a step by step guide to making this adorable and motivational banner for free, using things you have lying around the house!  Don't have good hand writing?  No problemo--I'll show you a trick to fake it!

What you'll need:
1.  Gold pen
2.  Scrap fabric
3.  Computer (optional)
4.  Pencil
5.  Glue
6.  Gold glitter
7.  Cooking string 
8.  Chop sticks 
9.  Sand paper 
10.  Staple gun/staples
11.  Sewing machine or just a needle and thread
12.  Scissors 

1.  Do you have crummy handwriting?  Pick out a fancy font that you like and type in as big size as you'd like your word on your banner to be hustle.  I got the idea for trying this technique thinking about the old light box my dad used to use to trace things.  Hold up your fabric to the computer screen and you'll be able to see the font through it--your screen becomes a light box!  Use a pencil to outline the font as you hold up the fabric to the screen.  

2.  Take your gold pen and write over the pencil marks.

3.  Run your glue along the gold outline. 

4.  Once the word is traced in glue --make it rain glitter! 

5.  Lift up your banner and shake it off! (to get rid of the extra glitter).  It will look like this:

6.  Next you have to make the rod that will go through the top of the banner.  I didn't have a rod that was long enough, and once I have an idea I just like to run with it, so I improvised and used 2 chopsticks for the rod.  First, I put them next to each other over a foam pad (so as not to ruin the table--not like that has happened before...) and then I staple gunned them together.

I didn't want the telltale pointy chopstick ends so I sawed off the pointed tips and then used sand paper to smooth them.

7.  Fold over the top of the banner about 1/2 in to 3/4 of an inch (big enough for the rod to go through) and pin along the edge. Next, sew along the edge--this is what the rod will run through.  You can hand sew it or use a sewing machine.

put the chopsticks through the opening.

8.  Tie your string to either side of the rod.  And you are done!  OR if you're super fancy you can add a tassel (see step 9) to add a little something special.

9.  Take your gold string and loop it around your hand multiple times. 

10.  Take another piece of string and wrap it around the loops you just gathered like a ponytail holder. 

11.  Stick the scissors through the big hoop of the strings and cut. 

12.  Sew on your little tassel 

13.  You're a hustler baby!  hang up your banner and get sh*t done.


Dayna Lee Collection - not just a Girl Boss buildingherempire / #ladytribe

When I found Dayna on Instagram, I was immediately taken by her inspiring words framed in such a feminine motif.   When she commented on one of my paintings and started following me, I felt so cool - like a celebrity had taken interest in little ol' me.  Turns out the woman behind the art is just as captivating as her message.   Visit Dayna's etsy shop here

As it turned out, Dayna had just launched her blog at the same time I had just begun creating mine.  I was so surprised/flattered/honored and excited when The Dayna of Dayna Lee Collection asked me to be her first "inspirational woman" for her blog.  It was so awesome and encouraging that someone who has more followers/more etsy sales than I do, would decide on a less known artist to feature.  I mean, she could have featured a better known artist that could help her gain more notoriety but she chose to help out a fellow upcoming lady boss.  How cool is that?  

When I heard my first periscope by business guru @cyndiespiegel , it immediately made me think of Dayna.  Although Dayna hadn't heard the scope (because it happened after she had featured me), she was already, perhaps unknowingly, building the lady tribe discussed in Spiegel's scope when she reached out to me.  Spiegel encouraged listeners to not view others as our "competitors" but more as potential members of our "lady tribe."  Although there will always be other artists, jewelry makers, teachers, lawyers, etc, there isn't another YOU.  Since no one does exactly what you do, how you do it, for the same reasons, we should not fear others that do similar things but should instead, befriend them.  She challenged us to reach out to someone that does something similar to us, who others may view as a "competitor" and get to know them/invite them into our lady tribe.  Your lady tribe will be there when you need last minute advice about your popup show, when something with a customer goes horribly wrong or to celebrate your latest creative endeavor, in a way that other friends may not understand.  The timing of the scope was so serendipitous, as Dayna and I had just begun our collaboration for two free prints to give to subscribers of our new blogs.

I love the juxtaposition of Dayna's powerful messages illustrated in such a beautiful and fun way.  You'd have to ask her, but I read it as Dayna  (maybe even subconsciously) saying that you don't have to pick being "strong" or being "girly."  Life is not in black and white--if you want to live in shades of pink, go girl!

It has been such a pleasure working with, and getting to know, Dayna in recent months.  Although her story is full of surprises (for example, besides running an empire, she is also a mother of 3!) when you pull back the curtain on Dayna Lee, unlike in the wizard of Oz, she is every bit the inspirational female entrepreneur as the upbeat words in her art.

So without further ado, I'd like to introduce the girl boss herself, Dayna Langlois of the Dayna Lee Collection. 

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Name:  Dayna Langlois

Age:  28

Job Title: Designer/Girl Boss/Empire Builder

Education Background: BSc International Business

Etsy Shop:

Instagram: @daynaleecollection


1.  Who is Dayna Lee?  How’d you come up with your business name? I’m a 28 year old busy mom to three children, including a newborn. I am the designer/owner of Dayna Lee Collection, a brand based upon the foundation of empowering women through hand lettered inspirational goods. There is no real story behind my business name. It started as DL Paper Goods and Home Accessories I do believe. Clearly, way too long. I then found an inspirational career profile on a woman who ran a successful stationery business and was a mother of three. Not only did her story stand out to me but also the fact that her business name ended in “collection”. I thought it was so sophisticated and truly allows a business to be much more than one product. I didn’t know what I was doing back then or what I wanted, but now… I do have that collection of offerings and love how everything unfolded. I found it important to have my name in my business as well so I combined my first and middle name so that I would always work hard to build something amazing… because my name was on it.

2.  Are you a full time Maker/Artist?  If so, how did you make that transition?  Right from the start, I left my part-time job of working at a popular coffee shop to dive into something full-time. I knew that it would take a while to build a business and earn an income so ever since I started my business in March of 2014, I have been pursuing it on a full-time basis. I didn’t have a skill set or a strategy so a lot of my hours went into just finding myself through my business.

3.  How do you balance your business and being a mom of three?  To be honest, I haven’t quite figured this out yet. My third baby is only two months old and I’m feeling very overwhelmed with the growing business and my growing family. I’m at the point where I think I need to let go of wanting to control all aspects of my business and know that it would be beneficial to bring in extra help. While it is hard for me to accept, I know I cannot do everything. “You can do anything, but not everything” as they say!

4.  What is the best part of your job?  And what is the toughest part of it? My favorite part of my job is when someone just gets me. When a woman gets every quote, relates to the words and loves my designs - I’m on cloud nine! I think, wow! This woman is excited about what I’ve created, quotes I’ve written, and colors I’ve chosen. That is huge! The toughest part if having to deal with things out of my comfort zone. The big one is having to be assertive with getting what I want and need especially when it comes to speaking up with manufacturers.

she's building her empire, just building my empire, think pink, live in shades of pink, audrey hepburn, fierce female, inspirational women, girl boss, girl boss inspiration, lady tribe, #girlboss, #ladytribe, entrepreneur, strong women, female artist, create, dayna lee collection5.  I love how in describing your journey you say that you started to write what you needed to hear.  What is the best advice you have for budding artists/makers/entrepreneurs? In the beginning, you may be scared and unsure. Not only unsure of what you’re doing, but also of yourself. Use these feelings to your advantage. Get out of that comfort zone and just start doing things you’re not ready for, say yes and figure things out along the way. Most importantly, prove to YOURSELF that you can handle each thing along the way and your confidence and skill set will only grow! Excuses and doubt are what stop a lot of talented people from building a business. When in doubt, create.

6.  What is something that we don’t know about you? I have literally no experience or schooling in design. I don’t know how to use Photoshop or Illustrator and I don’t know proper calligraphy. I’m just a girl with pretty hand lettering with a strong desire to change her life!

7.  Where do you see your empire going? ie what does the future hold for the Dayna Lee Collection? I’m truly ready to take Dayna Lee Collection to a whole new level! I’m working on more product lines, more collaborations, and bigger moments. I’m revamping my shop and the hustle is on! I have a huge show coming up in 2016 and many plans to expand. Stay tuned!


Opportunities don’t often come along. So, when they do, you have to grab them.

Just because you haven’t done something before, doesn’t mean that you can’t do it or are not qualified to. I love this quote by Audrey Hepburn that “Opportunities don’t often come along. So, when they do, you have to grab them.”

My experience in law school was fighting just to stay above water. It was not smooth sailing (to say the least) and nothing was handed to me. The bar exam was very much a similar experience—killing myself studying for it, and taking it multiple times, while I saw my peers skate by after their first attempt and move on. Even though I have now passed CA bar, I still find myself trying to shake off this survivalist mentality, as well as the residual blow to my self-esteem—that lingering voice telling me that my best is not good enough.

I think we are often held back by the ghosts of our past. The little voice that tells us that we aren’t good enough, smart enough, pretty enough, whatever it is. Now, as I go through the grueling process of applying for legal jobs, I am constantly facing applications that require 2, 3, 4+ years of experience to apply. So basically I can’t get experience unless I have experience. Ironic isn’t it? Like a mouse with cheese, the little voice of doubt in my head begins gnawing once again.

A couple months ago, I was approached by my dear friend, entrepreneur/blogger/teacher, @teachinspirechange, about working on her business logo. The only experience I had in making logos was in making my own for Ladie Katie. The little voice in my head told me that I wasn’t experienced enough to work on a logo and I didn’t want to disappoint my friend. After all, I had been bombarding myself with legal job applications telling me as much. My voice, on the other hand, was excited to expand my empire in a new and unexpected direction. Thankfully, that was the voice I chose to listen to.

It’s one thing if you actually are not qualified to do something—for example, I wouldn’t want someone that likes watching ER but who is not a doctor to have performed my tonsillectomy. But just because you haven’t had the opportunity to do something before doesn’t mean you aren’t perfectly capable of doing it. Society tells us that in order to do something we must be the best.  Striving for perfection, we can miss out on creative outlets and opportunities.  But who says that things have to be perfect to be beautiful?  In fact, pushing yourself beyond your comfort zone and trying something new is a great way to spark those creative juices when you feel like your creativity has taken a vacation! After speaking to my friend about the logo design, the gnawing doubt was flooded out of my head by waves of inspiration, ideas and excitement!

I have now been contacted by multiple businesses and bloggers regarding logo design. Unlike my paintings and illustrations, where, typically, the client sends me a photo or photos to base the painting on, I love the challenge of starting from scratch when I work on logos. Sometimes, clients come to me and it’s my job to help them find their vision. Other times, the clients have the vision and it’s my job to make it come to life. Either way, it is so fun for me to unearth the vision they have or help illuminate their path to discover what it is they want.

My friend saw something in me that I hadn’t seen in myself—which was my potential. Although lacking experience, based on my work and personality, she knew that I was the right person for the job. So, like Audrey said, when opportunity knocks on your door, don’t be afraid to answer. What’s waiting behind it might surprise you!

Knock Knock,


Need help with your logo design?  Visit my etsy shop here and let's get started!


Who needs golden eggs when you can have golden balls?

DIY, DIY Tutorial, Free tutorial, Free DIY tutorial, do it yourself, DIY free tutorial, DIY gold sphere, gold sphere tutorial, gold sphere,

I love little knickknacks and chatzkies. They are like the characters in the various scenes around my apartment. For this DIY I made this little golden spike sphere inspired by the one pictured here by z gallerie for $30:

I made mine for my favorite price--FREE--with items I had around the house. Even if you aren't a hoarder like me and don't have these supplies lying around, you won't break the bank with these golden balls.


1. Ping pong ball
2. Drill with very small bit
3. Gold Spray Paint
4. Lots of tooth pics
5. Painters tape (optional)
6. Trash bag


1. Roll up a blob of painters tape and put it on the ping pong ball. Place the pingpong ball on top of a top (for example the top of the spray paint). This is so when you spray paint the ball it doesn't roll around.

2. Lay out a trashbag in a well ventilated area outside to protect the ground (side note: my little deck at my apartment always looks like a scene from Dexter, covered in plastic) and spray that little bugger. Let that side dry and then flip the ball over and spray the other side.

3. After the ball is completely dry, you are ready to drill! I put the pingpong ball on top of this tape dispenser so it wouldn't move around while I drilled. I did not pre-measure or draw dots before drilling I just went around in circles as evenly as I could. If you are more anal about placement though then you could measure beforehand.

4. After you drill the holes, stick toothpics in them. I used the fancy one side spiked and one side flat toothpicks. I put the sharp side inside the hole so the more flat side would be the exposed point. I used the smallest sized bit that I had to drill the holes so I didn't need to use any glue to hold the toothpicks after shoving them in the holes.

5. After every hole has a pick (sorry this post sounds so naughty!), you are ready to spray paint again! Spray one side, let it dry, flip it over and spray again. It might take you a couple flips to make sure you don't miss any spots.

6. Tada! Your golden ball is ready to be exposed (hehe). Who needs golden eggs when you can have golden balls? Doesn't it look cute in my workshop?


DIY tissue paper garland tassel follow up

DIY, DIY Tassel, DIY garland, DIY, Free Tutorial, Free Tassel Tutorial, DIY tutorial, Free DIY tutorial, do it yourself, DIY Decor

Here's a follow up tutorial for the DIY tassel garland post because I figured out an easier way to do it that (I think) looks better too! 

See the original post for the materials needed.  They are the same except you won't need sparkle ribbon.

1.  Take your tissue paper and if it has fancy edges like mine did, cut them off.

2.  Fold the tissue paper and then cut skinny strips BUT DON'T go all the way to the top.  Leave between 1 in - 1 1/2 in.  (This is the first difference from my original post)
Cut until it looks like this:

3.  Unfold the paper a couple time, or all the way if you want (the next step will just take longer if you unfold it all the way).  Take your string and make a loop about 1 in - 1 1/2 in long.  (Also different from the original post - I didn't use string the first time)
Wrap the end of the loop with double sided tape and stick it onto the edge of the paper like so:

And then start rolling up the tissue around the string loop.  

4.  Once you roll it all the way up, twist the tip of the tassel (like wringing out a towel) so it looks like this: 
When your done it should look like this:

5.  Repeat as many times as you want and then hang all of your tassels on a string and enjoy!