summer sale in the etsy shop!!!

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Hellooooo Summerrrr!

Big sale in the Etsy shop! All previous season Instant Comfort Pocket Boxes are on sale as well as prints, wooden key chains  and... the online 2D to 3D illustration course!!!

For how long? Untill sold out or till my pregnancy leave by about mid august... so make sure to take advantage of it now!! ;-)

See the SALE section at

Kids room & birch tree felt leafs DIY

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Hey there, I'm back from redecorating the first floor of our home ;-).
It was a big shuffle as we had to redecorate and move about every room into another room. Also, I had to deal with some frustrations due to pregnancy issues (pelvic issues to be precise) and was not able to lift, paint or basically do anything (which I hate, I want to be part of the fun!) Luckily we had great help from my parents and M's dad and together with them we managed to get the thing done in less than two weeks.

J (a.k.a The toddler) will share the biggest bedroom with his little sister once she's born (or a few months after that) so we made them a toddler-and-baby-perfect shared bedroom. We moved J's birch tree to the new room and added some spring leafs to make it stand out. When J saw his 'pimped' birch tree he said: 'Mommy can do magic!!', which is about the best compliment I ever got! (Or is this my pregnancy hormones?)

Anyway, above a impression of what the kids room looks like and... below, the tutorial on the DIY leafs and birch tree:

 What you need
  • a birch tree (or part of it). We used the top part of a birch tree from my parents in law's front yard (they wanted to get rid of).
  • saw
  • 2 screws (and dowels if needed for your walls) + one long screw (about 7 cm)
  • drill and screwdrivers
  • felt in various green and ocre (or any other color you like)
  • elastic thread + needle
  • scissors

How it's done
1. Birch tree: 
Saw the top and bottom off so it is the hight of the room minus about 3 cm.
Place the tree in a big terracotta pot (no soil) and screw one branch to the wall and put one scew ascew into the top of the tree and ceiling.

2.Cut raindrop shapes in various sizes out of green and ocre yellow felt (or any other color you prefer). Thread the leafs (on the round side) like in the picture.

3.Tie the leafs on the branches of your tree and make sure to stretch the elastic thread a bit so it's firmly tied. Cut away any left over thread.

4. If you're really going for it: make different colored leafs/ tree decoration for every season!

Off line for a few days...

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A quick post to inform you that I'll be off line for about a 10 days (I'll still check my mail and run the Etsy shop but blogging will be on hold) as we're in the middle of redecorating a few rooms (including my work studio which will be moved to another room) in our house to make space for the little one we're expecting in september.

See you soon!

Helicopter Parenting for &-Katern

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This is the newest illustration I made for &-Katern (regiokranten Persgroep), about helicopter parents (parenting) who monitor their kids a bit to much... a fun subject to illustrate!

I'm a bit proud of this illustration as drawing people is always a tricky thing. But in this case  I'm very please with the result (and that is rare ;-) ).

New animals postcards set

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Just from the printer... a brand new animals postcard set!
It contains three postcards, one with a 'happy birthday' bear, a (bit grumpy) 'get well soon' cat and a 'hello my friend' bird.
The back is blank (only with my logo printed on the bottom, see the second picture).

All cards are offset printed on heavy cardstock (FSC, 340 grams wood free offset paper called: DigiGold Ice White).  I choose this paper because of the natural feel and bright white color, so the illustration is printed at it's very best.

The original illustration were made with pencil and watercolor, scanned into the computer and printed at a Dutch print company.

You can find this lovely set at !

illustration of the Shikoku 88 temple route

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For & Katern (newspaper edition) I made a map of the 88 temple route on Shikoku Island in Japan. One of their employees walked the route from temple 1-32 and they wanted an illustrated map of her adventure.
While researching I soon found out I should add a new destination to my vakantion-wish-list. Wow, what a beautiful magical island! I'm not sure if I would walk the whole route (1200 km!) but just a visite to a few temples and the magical nature there would be perfect.

I so much enjoy discovering such inspiring subject through commissions!
More pictures and close up of the illustration on my portfolio website:

The houses of my village - barn house

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For today, I've got another 'house of my village' for you!
This house/ barn may not be considered a 'pretty dutch house' in the sense of that it's well redone or has a fancy look but I do love the rough look of it (it reminds me of the barns and sheds Nigel Peake drew in his In The Wilds Book).

Often there is a tractor parked next to the house with a big trailer in which they organise rides for kids birthday parties with country theme and other activities. Recenty there was a bit of a sad thing going on as someone (only one person) in the village (or just outside the village) complained about the noise they made and now the owners of Vurige Staart Sport (also known as 'Boer Piet') started a petition to make sure they can still continue. If you want to help them (it's all in dutch) you can sign the petition here!

Valesca van Waveren

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Hello my friends!
This monday I'd like to introduce you to Valesca van Waveren, a fellow illustrator and sweet friend.
Valesca will teach my illustration courses from september to november at the Utrecht Center for the Arts, while I'm on pregnancy leave.
I'm so happy she agreed to do this as she is such a talented illustrator and inspiring teacher!

Above some of her wonderful illustration work. Apart from illustrating we share a love for ceramics (check her Etsy shop!) and drawing plants ;-)

For more information on her work, see Valesca's website.
Interested in the illustration course? See the UCK website.

all images by Valesca van Waveren

Silhouette cameo 2 + bridesmaids

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For all the Instant Comfort Pocket Boxes I make, every single item is cut by hand. You can imagine the mayor amount of work.... But now, I've got a clever new machine to do the cutting for me! I bought a Silhouette Cameo 2 and after a week of struggling to make it work (grrrrrr), it now is my dream come true! I adjust my designs in the silouette software and send it to my printer, cutter and tadaaa! in 5 minutes the shapes are cut and I can go straight through to assembling the boxes.
I wish I bought it sooner.... ;-)

I started directly with a brand new design - a box with a wedding theme - to ask your best friend(s) to be your bridesmaid. On the front you can write the friend's name to make it even more personal.
I'm also working on a 'will you be my maid of honour' box that will soon join the bridesmaid-box in the shop!

Illustration for &Katern

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A few posts ago I showed you a sneek preview with garden sketches for a new commission. It's been published so I can now show you the resutl!

It was a commission for &Katern, an extra newspaper section for a couple of dutch newspapers (like Algemeen Dagblad and such). The atricle I made an illustration for is about how to safe money on garden design. I very much enjoyed drawing the little plants, pots, flowers and succulents, drawing nature is my all time fave!

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