July 2018

Today I was thinking about using the good stuff.

Do you have this issue?  You have good dishes, but you use the “serviceable” ones that you don’t really like and save the good ones only for special occasions.  And by good, I don’t mean expensive!  It’s not about price really, it’s about beauty and art and sentimentality and visual appeal and all those intangibles that make you pick up something and say ” Wow, I want this!”   Do you have the favorite shoes, bag, jewelry, coffee mug, whatever, but you don’t use it all the time because you’re saving it?  What are we saving it for exactly? There’s not going to be some magical day when you have all the time in the world to start using the good stuff.  Maybe this “waiting for a special occasion” or a worthy moment is a generational thing, maybe it’s not, but I think we need to get over it.

One of the things I love about making ceramics is that the pieces are functional, “serviceable” if you will, and also pretty.  They feel good in your hand, they have weight and texture and nuance and they’re unique. Plus, they look good on the table and you feel happier drinking your coffee out of the pretty mug.  Put the flowers in the beautiful, fancy vase.  There are a lot of things in the world we can’t control, but adding beauty to our lives every day is an easy one to fix. 

I’m reading this book, kind of fluff, but I was drawn to it because the artist in it is creating art from garbage, things she’s found on the beach or on hikes in woods.  It’s a topic that’s always on my mind.  Anyone who knows me and has gotten the “single use plastic/don’t use straws” lecture in the last few years knows I’m pretty animated about the topic.  And then I started thinking again about the whole single use things from the perspective of  “when did we get so lazy”.  When did it become acceptable and for some, even preferable, to use things once….and ugly things at that?  I’ve also hated plastic.  And yes, strong word…but when the girls were little, I couldn’t stand the plastic stuff so I had Ron build them a playhouse in wood to match our house.  In the kitchen, dish drainer wood or metal, no plastic.  Arguments ensue over glass containers versus Tupperware (ugh).  Bee’s wrap and parchment paper instead of plastic wrap…the list goes on.  And it’s not a new thing.

So yes, back to the single use thing.  What are we waiting for?  Why not use the good stuff every day?  Use the pretty bowl, use the good plates, the special coffee mug and wear the good jewelry, too. Enjoy bring beauty and art to your life every day….Use the good stuff.

Happy Summer, Liz

June 2018

Happy Summer to all!

“The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness.  When one tugs a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world.” John Muir

My favorite quote and never more true, everything is truly connected. I puzzle daily over why that is so very difficult for some people to understand.  Nothing operates in a vacuum, There are no independent acts, everything is cause and effect. I spend too much brainpower, or maybe not enough, trying to figure out how to encourage people to embrace science, seek out facts, be more engaged, more compassionate, more empathetic, more human.  Having more time to think, create, engage has been a gift.  Realizing that so many people are lost, hateful, uninformed and uncaring…that I suppose is the Yin and Yang.

Since my last post I’ve been busy creating an impossibly long to do list, prepping for shows and pop-ups,  creating, and trying out some new learnings. It’s also been great being in the garden, spending family time and connecting with friends- new and old. 

It still never ceases to amaze, how quickly time passes, how many things I still have on the to do list and how difficult it is to coordinate schedules, even without a full time gig.  

I was part of a women potter’s show in May, which was great and gave me some much needed insight. That lead to a show the month of June in conjunction with @evanstonmade and the Evanston Art Center, and an Open Studio tour which was a fantastic day of meeting new people and spending time with friends and neighbors.

I also have been taking a pottery class this spring and summer.  It’s fun to work in a studio with other potters, have a great teacher at my disposal for tips, tricks and demos, and learn new skills.  Since I work in my home studio with low fire, this high fire class has been a new challenge. 

I’ve embraced online learning and classes in a way that’s a bit extreme.  My usual all or nothing penchant is a bit more manageable when not working around a full time job, so I’m trying to utilize every available moment until that full time thing starts again.

I’ve also become part of a great group (C3- Creative Commerce Committee) that is working to support creatives in my community and partner artists with small business owners to grow the arts and to enhance commerce overall in Evanston.  It’s an incredible group of people working on something I feel strongly about.  It’s why I love my city and the strength of the arts community and the passion for engagement is part of what appealed to us  in the beginning.  We still meet the most interesting people and they all love living here.  The committee is helping me get back into the retail head set  and connect with what I know best and is also perfect for my “transition” phase.

In the meantime, I’ll be working in the same space with Ron while I throw, taking classes, working on C3, enjoying the deck & garden while checking email and site updates.  Every other Thursday cocktails with the neighbors, summer concerts and house projects round out the summer list.  Maybe a few trips to the beach and a Florida trip have to fit in there somewhere, too.

As my “gap year” comes to an end,  I’m will work to retain the harmony and balance I’ve found.  Retain my enthusiasm for learning new things and making time to try them all. Stop and smell the flowers!  Until next time….Liz



April 2018

Snow in April, makes it feel a little like winter is still here, but the year is flying by quickly and deadlines are quickly approaching. Looking back to my first post in February, I set a launch deadline for April 20th so one more round of edits, asking a few friends and relatives to do another pass through and I’ll soon be official.

Last remaining big “To Do” is the logo. We’ve been playing around with it for a couple of months and believe we are over-thinking it, as is common around our house. Nothing like the need to have business cards next week, to help the decision process.

Also, it seems, nothing like not working full time to give the illusion of endless hours to get everything on the last 10 year’s worth of wish lists done in a few months. Turns out, it really doesn’t work that way. I am accomplishing some things on that list, adding others, and feeling a little guilty all the time for not getting more done. Today, I’m blaming it on the fact that it’s almost the middle of April and still 35 degrees.

Gearing up for my first Pop-Up Sale May 5th and 6th at 1100 Florence. Thank you Evanston Made!

February 2018



Start of a new month, start of a new project.  The possibilities are either limitless or daunting depending on how much coffee I’ve had.  January was a little “all over the place” so starting a new month with some structure in place sounds good.

For me structure equals: To Do Lists & Deadlines

Feb Wk 1- Start building a website….launch deadline April 15.

Feb Wk 2- Get back to the wheel and throw some of those mugs everyone keeps asking about. Etsy shop launch deadline May 1.

Feb Wk 3- Review and edit weeks one and two work when you realize it’s not great.

Feb Wk 4 Accomplish at least 50% of each day’s to do list and then reevaluate how many things are on each day’s To Do list, cause you have a tendency to go a little crazy with how much you think you can do in 10 hours. Revise deadlines and add in online classes.   Also, read more blogs since I think you need help at this.


Day One 2018

Night Frost Coffee Mug

So I’m trying very hard to not take it as a sign that the very first thing that happened with my new site is that my computer crashed.

Starting anything new is a combination of exciting and scary.  This adventure, however, is for fun, for me, for future projects, and maybe eventually a business, so I’m telling my self “no pressure”.  Since the process is not as intuitive as one would hope….reverting back to the thing that’s easy, writing, is where I’ll start.

First, Ron started his business, Abodeacious.com over 3 years ago.  It’s going well and he’s still enjoying it despite the occasional crash, curse or yelling I sometimes hear through the studio floor.  Mostly I hear saws, nail guns and blaring music from the shop below.  In nice weather I hear him talking to all the neighbors and curious passersby.   In the years that I was working full-time, and was in the studio/office on Mondays, I would hear all this and be irritated or jealous that he was down there doing something he loved and having fun (usually) and I was most likely on the phone or doing a mountain or emails and paperwork.  So, as things are happen, life evolves.

So, we decided to start something new….still in the baby stages….which might become something for me, maybe a family “brand”, maybe something bigger working with our community of artist friends and neighbors.  Thus, this site and the “ever-evolving” part of the story.

For now, this place will be mostly about my hobbies to see if they could become more.  My friends and family have been very supportive of my taking some time to explore all the things I love to do and haven’t had much time for lately.  Stay tuned….

And last for today, until I make more progress on the site…a little about the name Artisan and Sage.

We’ve been tossing around names and ideas for a while and were pretty attached to the Artisan part when I got lost down a Google rabbit hole and discovered a great book and many articles describing the seven parts of the soul.  Artisan and Sage are 2 of the 7 parts and seemed to fit very well the symbiotic relationship that exists in our home.  The final key was something I found that showed a pairing of the different sole types and the Artisan/Sage combo was perfect.  

Ron worked on my logo…and would love to have a makers mark one day, hopefully drawing by my daughter Rae, since I’ve given her the inspiration as well. My daughter Maddie, helped with edits and advice and art direction.  I’m sure things will change as I receive more feedback, but in the meantime….here we are.


Thanks for the interest, support and/or comments.



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