pine needle basketry with Hannie Goldgewicht

I had seen Hannie Goldgewicht’s work many times on our website and on social media, but when I saw it in person, it was as if I had discovered a buried treasure. Hannie’s vessels, bowls, boxes, and wall sculptures are all full of detailed surprises, exceeding any expectation you may have from seeing them in a photograph. The textures are rich—from the ceramic structure to the weavings of the pine needles.

Hannie Goldgewicht's work.

Hannie Goldgewicht’s vessels and boxes.

Hannie is a native Costa Rican living in Los Angeles. She studied sculpture and explored many creative media, from ceramics to metal, wood to stone, and textiles to handmade paper. She traveled around the world observing and being influenced by different cultures and different artistic styles. On a trip to Argentina with her husband, he introduced her to his aunt Delfa Deriu, a master in fiber. After seeing Deriu’s work, Hannie was drawn to the pine needle basketry. It was the first time she had been made aware of this type of work, which is not a typical Argentinian craft. After spending an afternoon with Delfa learning how to weave, Hannie returned to Costa Rica, inspired to master and incorporate this newly acquired technique into her ceramic pieces.  Hearing Hannie express the enthusiasm and passion she has for her work makes you appreciate her art in a renewed and even brighter light.

As we settled deeper into our conversation, I asked Hannie how long it takes to create one piece of work. It became clear that it’s difficult to pinpoint a standardized timeframe due to her comprehensive, detail-oriented process.

Each piece has a multi-step process. Every piece starts on the potter’s wheel, where she can easily spend all day creating various vessels, bowls, boxes, and platters. Hannie throws enough to keep a stock of different sizes and designs at hand. The pieces are then trimmed, pierced with holes for weaving, fired, and finished with paint and patinas.


Stock of vessels already fired.

Hannie sanding the fired pieces.


After the ceramic piece is done, she begins the longest part of the whole process: basket weaving with pine needles. Depending on the size of the vessel, it can take as short as an hour or up to a couple days to complete the woven portion. Hannie usually saves the basket weaving for the end of the day, when she can weave and unwind as she sits on her couch and catches up on her favorite TV shows.

Hannie Goldgewicht pine needle weaving. (Photo credit: Kirk Douglas)

Hannie Goldgewicht pine needle weaving a ceramic plate.
(Photo credit: Douglas Kirkland)

To be able to weave her ceramic pieces, Hannie requires bunches of pine needles to work from.

Bunches of pine needles.

Bunches of pine needles.

Hannie uses the ancient way of acquiring pine needle supplies: by traveling to different locations and hand picking the perfect pine needles herself. She always keeps an eye on the pine trees wherever she goes, ready to gather pine needles at any time. One of her favorite locations to gather pine needles is in San Diego. On a trip to San Diego for an art fair, she spotted soft pine needles near the shoreline. Her family has become great contributors in the pine needle process. Hannie’s husband and son help her with gathering pine needles, and when her mother visits she helps Hannie bundle, separate, and clean them.

Hannie Goldgewicht's mom with the pine needles from Costa Rica.

Hannie Goldgewicht’s mom with a month’s load of bundling.

Once she has her bunches of pine needles, she cleans them by soaking them in water so she can separate and straighten them out. Then she dries the needles and takes the tops off.

“Some basket weavers leave the tops, but I like them bare,” says Hannie.

Hannie Goldgewicht taking the tops off the pine needles.

Hannie Goldgewicht taking the tops off the pine needles.

Gathering and cleaning the pine needles is a lot of work and very time-consuming, but it is part of the process to creating the beauty in her masterpieces.

Top: Hannie Goldgewicht on the potters wheel. (Photo credit: Douglas Kirkland)
Lower left: Gathering pine needles. Lower Right: Vessels by Hannie Goldgewicht


Wall sculptures undergo the same type of process. Since she keeps a stock of ceramic parts, she works in sections. She spends different parts of the day throwing on the potter’s wheel, designing new work, and weaving.

Ceramic Tiles.

Ceramic Tiles.

Hamming copper to add texture.

Hamming copper to add texture.

Her wall pieces are abstracts inspired by the nature that surrounds her at home, on her trips, or on a daily stroll. Hannie went on to explain what inspired one of her most complex pieces, her Rainbow wall sculpture. It was on a day that it rained while she was on her walk through the observatory and she caught a glimpse of a rainbow reflecting over the city.

Rainbow by Hannie Goldgewicht

Rainbow by Hannie Goldgewicht

What makes Hannie’s work even more intriguing is the one-of-a-kind story behind each piece. Hannie talks about how she loves hearing the stories of what others think the pieces stand for or what they take away from her work.

Learning about each step it takes to create a particular vessel or wall sculpture and how dedicated Hannie is to her work truly increased my appreciation for each masterpiece Hannie creates.

By |October 13th, 2016|spotlights|0 Comments

pumpkin wonderland

Crackle Pumpkins by Leonoff Art Glass

Crackle Pumpkins by Leonoff Art Glass

Pumpkins are a perennial favorite for autumn decorations and Halloween festivities, gracing porch steps and centerpieces alike with their vibrant color and charming presence.

Ripening Pumpkins, giclee print of an original watercolor painting by Steven Kozar

Ripening Pumpkins, giclee print of an original watercolor painting by Steven Kozar

Pumpkins—and their cousins, winter squash—are available in a cornucopia of shapes, colors, and sizes. Tiny jack-be-little pumpkins that fit in the palm of your hand. Enormous Atlantic Giants that can only be moved with a forklift. Butternut squash with smooth, creamy skin. Ornamental gourds studded with baroque protuberances in a panoply of color.

Pumpkins and squash at a roadside stand in Wisconsin farm country.

Pumpkins and squash at a roadside stand in Wisconsin farm country.

But it’s not simply their beauty that makes pumpkins so beloved this time of year: it’s also their status as cherished symbols of abundance and plenty. For the farmer or gardener, pumpkins are one of the final crops of the growing season—a sweet reward after months of tender care, and a joyful representation of a bountiful harvest.

Autumnal Pumpkins by Treg Silkwood

Autumnal Pumpkins by Treg Silkwood

For many (including me), pumpkins also evoke warm childhood memories. I am reminded of cozy pumpkin patch hayrides, the messy fun of carving jack-o-lanterns, the crunch of oven-roasted pumpkin seeds, and the sight of candlelit jack-o-lanterns greeting me and my costumed friends on Halloween night.

With such charming beauty coupled with rich, meaningful symbolism, it’s no wonder that so many artists are inspired by pumpkins. And—bonus—a pumpkin’s cylindrical form makes it perfectly suited to glassblowing. So it’s easy to see why pumpkins are especially popular with glass artists—and why glass pumpkin patches have sprouted up at art centers and studios across the country!

Left and center: A glass pumpkin comes to life in the Anchor Bend Glassworks studio.
Right: Large Orange Pumpkin by Anchor Bend Glassworks.


The sheer diversity of the Curcubita genus is reflected in the breadth of glass pumpkins available in our Artful Pumpkin Patch. But artists don’t simply recreate nature—they use it as a springboard for their own imaginative flourishes and personal touches. You’ll find pumpkins and squash in a dazzling array of colors and patterns never found in a garden—indeed, impossible to grow anywhere besides an artist’s imagination!

Glow Super Mini Pumpkins by Donald Carlson

Glow Super Mini Pumpkins by Donald Carlson

One of the ways that artists make pumpkins their own is through the stem. This also happens to be my favorite part, not only because I am drawn to sinuous shapes, but also because I delight in the variety of creative approaches artists take to represent a pumpkin’s coiled tendrils.

9_burntred_cropped_blogedit 10_speckled_cropped_blogedit
Upper left: Pumpkin in Burnt Red by Drew Hine. Upper right: Speckled Pumpkin by Scott Summerfield. Bottom: Medium Ivory Autumnal Pumpkin by Treg Silkwood.


Left: Michael Trimpol creates a stem from molten glass. Right: Spotted Pumpkins in Salmon-Gray by Michael Trimpol and Monique LaJeunesse


In addition to getting creative with the stem, many glass artists use the pumpkin’s simple form as a canvas for intricate surface design. For instance, these pumpkins by Ken and Ingrid Hanson are fantastic examples of latticino canework and murrini—traditional Italian glassworking techniques for which the artists are renowned.

14_latticino_blogedit 15_impressionist_blogedit
Left: Orange and Yellow Latticino Pumpkin by Ken and Ingrid Hanson
Right: Impressionist Pumpkin by Ken and Ingrid Hanson


Other artists take advantage of glass’s unique optical qualities to create dramatic effects. Both pumpkins below have clear bodies that refract light, creating a striking interplay with the core of dichroic glass or gold leaf. To my eye, these effects give these pumpkins a hint of magic.

16_dichroic_blogedit 17_goldleaf_blogedit
Left: Large Clear and Dichroic Pumpkin by Ken and Ingrid Hanson
Right: Gold Leaf Pumpkin by Scott Summerfield


Still other artists make a statement with color. Some, like Mark Rosenbaum, revel in vibrant colors and bold patterns, while others, like Hudson Beach Glass, focus on a single color with a matte finish for a refined, modern look.

18_mardigras_blogedit 19_black_blogedit
Left: Mardi Gras Pumpkins by Mark Rosenbaum
Right: Black Gourd 0862 by Hudson Beach Glass


These are only a sampling of the remarkable glass pumpkins available in our Artful Pumpkin Patch. I encourage you to explore the rest of this pumpkin wonderland to discover the many ways that artists interpret this beloved squash—perhaps you’ll find a few that catch your eye and evoke fond memories of autumn. Happy picking!

By |October 7th, 2016|articles|0 Comments

right piece, right size

You have a wall that needs “something.” You know you want something special, something that illustrates your personality, something that uniquely represents your home, and, on a more practical side, something that fits the space well. Where do you even begin? There are so many beautiful pieces of artwork out there that it can be overwhelming if you simply dive in. These four tips should help you to focus in on what you are really looking for – or more importantly, help you to not get distracted by all of the other works that you fall in love with along the way.

2D or 3D
Traditionally we have decorated our walls with two dimensional works of art like paintings and prints, but contemporary design affords us the creativity of come off the wall with three dimensional works. Wall sculpture can be a wonderful way to add even more visual appeal to your space.

When deciding between a more traditional two dimensional piece and a more contemporary three dimensional piece, there are a couple things to keep in mind.

  • What is the traffic through the space? Do you have a lot of people moving through the space? Will they be getting close to the piece? You don’t want captivating three dimensional work of art that obstructs how people can move through the space. And you surely don’t want a piece that people will accidentally bump into. That could be a safety hazard for your guests, and you risk the chance that they will damage the work of art. If the space has a lot of traffic that could interact negatively with the piece you may want to stick to two dimensional works of art the more tightly hug the wall.
  • Is a three dimensional work of art going to obstruct the space? Think about what else is in the space – windows, air vents, furniture, plants? You want to make sure that your artwork doesn’t interfere. It would be unfortunate to fall in love with a piece of artwork, hang it over your couch, and find out that your family and guests bump their heads on it every time they sit down on the couch because the piece extends away from the wall.

style and theme
Knowing your personal style is vital to making sure you select a piece that you will love for years to come. Do you prefer artwork that is abstract or representational? Are you a lover of modern forms or more traditional themes? There is no right or wrong here. Maybe you have a traditional style home but prefer abstract works of art. Perhaps you live in a modern Silicon Valley loft but love traditional prints. This is purely your aesthetic. If your space “screams” for a modern abstract but that’s not what you love, your space may be happy with an abstract piece, but you may not ever come to love it.

If you’re not sure what your aesthetic is, I recommend making a Wish List or Pinterest board and start saving images of works that you love. Eventually you will start to see your own personal aesthetic come out. If you find yourself saving lots of traditional landscapes, they will start to take over your wish list or pin board.

Once you know your own personal tastes, that will help you to focus in on those themes and styles without being distracted or overwhelmed by all of the other styles out there.

Want to get a little more involved? Once you know what you like, start a wish list or pin board for each room in your house. You might find that you like different themes or styles for different spaces. Maybe one space is very open and can handle bold, modern abstracts, and another space requires more romantic pieces. Doing an exercise like this will also help you to start to understand how different themes and styles fit into different spaces.

color and material
Color is so important in our lives. It can make us happy. It can help to calm us down. It can speak of power. Colors complement each other or clash with each other. Color can be bold or subtle. Combine that with the material that the piece is made from and you can speak volumes. Art glass typically shines and reflects the light. Ceramic tends to absorb light. Therefore, a piece of art glass art and a piece of ceramic wall art will feel very different in the same space.

Think about the space where the work of art will hang. How much light will there be? Is the light natural or artificial? An art glass or polished metal piece will shine in the light. A matte ceramic or fiber piece might not be bright enough in a dim room. Lighting from a harsh angle might pick up the edges of thick acrylic or oil paintings and accentuate the textures of bold brush strokes or swipes from a palette knife.

picking the right size
Now you know what you want your piece to look like, but how big should it be? The general rule is that a piece hung over furniture should be 75% the width of the furniture and hung 6″-12″ above the furniture. If you are hanging a piece of work on an empty wall, the general rule of thumb is to leave 3/8 the width of the piece on both sides open. And don’t forget that you can do a gallery wall by filling your space with many smaller works of art. Of course, rules are meant to be broken, and you can select any size that you want to fill the space. Big and overwhelming to really make a statement? Four smaller pieces that fill the space of a single piece?

Now that you have narrowed your focus and have an idea of what you want for your space, it’s time to start looking for just the right piece. You don’t need to narrow in based on the order above. Decide what’s most important to you and narrow in that order. For me, usually it’s two dimensional or three dimensional and then size is most important. I like to have a little wiggle room on the other aspects.

Let’s say I decide I want a three dimensional piece for my wall that is about 30″ wide and 40″ tall, it’s really simple to go into wall sculpture and narrow in on my width and height.

shop for artist made modern wall sculpture by size

Once I’ve narrowed in by height and/or width I can start to narrow in on themes and colors. This focus helps me to find just the right piece for my space without being overwhelmed by the amazing amount of beautiful works available to choose from.

By |September 28th, 2016|articles, Design|0 Comments

lisa bayne collection

When we launched apparel at Artful Home, we had one clear idea:  to offer distinctive clothing by small-batch American designers whose artful style meshed with ours.  We suspected that there were women out there – women like me! –  who were interested in clothes that didn’t look like everything else out there, women who cared as much about style as comfort, women who were not driven by trend.

While we love the designers with whom we are working, we have been frustrated not to be able to find some pieces in the market which we would like to offer you and so, in the spirit of creativity of this brand, I began to develop a collection of our own styles, styles I am collaborating with designers on.  It is being called, simply, the Lisa Bayne collection.  We are introducing a small collection for Fall 2016 with the hope to grow this collection each season as we hear from you how you like the pieces.

I take this collection seriously; it has my name on it. That means that I am being ultra careful about the fabrics, the fit, the colors, and the details.  Great style and great comfort are equally important to me.  Having spent the first half of my career as a designer, it is fantastic to be returning to the design world with a lifetime of experience under my belt and the knowledge of what I know I am looking for in clothes at this stage in my life.  I believe that clothes have to feel great on our bodies and make us feel like a million bucks.


I hope you love these pieces and give them a try.  And I also hope you will tell me what else I can be doing to improve, what things you are looking for.

By |September 13th, 2016|Collections|1 Comment

to frame or not to frame? and what to ask your framer

Your decision to frame a painting, watercolor, drawing, or other 2D artwork depends upon several things: the features of the piece of art itself, the place you intend to hang it, and perhaps most important, your relationship with the art. Is it art you’ll want to live with for only a few years (to match a wall or furniture setting, for example)? Or is it truly valuable to you beyond its setting and worthy of long-term care?

It’s certainly possible to find paintings, drawings, photographs, and prints that don’t need a frame: you can simply take them home and hang them. Art created on newer materials, such as gallery wrapped canvases and cradled clayboard or birch panels, have wide finished edges and require no framing for display.

Many artists featured at Artful Home offer works like this. For example, Victoria Primicias’s small and larger paintings, such as Tender Reasons and Lesson Three are on wood panels with stained edges.  You can hang them immediately.

Edge view on Lesson Three by Victoria Primicias

Stained Edge on Lesson Three.

Gallery wrapped canvases are deeper than traditional canvases – 3/4” to 2 ¾” – and the canvas wraps completely around the edge. The artist treats the depth edge as a part of the work. A frame is not needed.  For example, Karen Hale’s acrylic paintings are painted on 1 ½” deep gallery wrapped canvas and are ready to hang.

Relic of the Past by Katherine Hale

Relic of the Past by Katherine Hale

View of canvas edge on Relic of the Past.

Conversely, works on paper, thinner traditional canvas, and other surfaces that don’t have a supporting internal framework will need to be framed or mounted in some way for protection and display. For example, Eugenie Torgerson’s work on deckle-edged paper would work best framed with a mat or float-mounted to reveal the deckle edge.

Before Memory - Wells Road by Eugenie Torgerson

Before Memory – Wells Road by Eugenie Torgerson

Leonard Moskowitz’s acrylic painting, Afternoon Walk, is a large painting (30”h x 40”w) on a traditionally stretched canvas that’s 1” deep. It is described as “ready for framing” – that is, it requires a frame.

5_AfternoonWalk_Moskowitz Edits

Afternoon Walk by Leonard Moskowitz

Where will you hang your art? The place you intend to hang your art will determine its longevity. Anything hung in direct sunlight or near a heat source will degrade. Ultraviolet light is very destructive to pigments, paper, canvas (and to practically everything else). Heat causes paint to crack, wood to shrink, canvas and paper to dry and age rapidly. Consider the spot carefully. Whether you frame your new piece or not, excessive sunlight and heat should be avoided. To a certain extent, UV damage can be mitigated with anti-UV glass, but not totally eliminated. Don’t hang something in the sun unless you don’t care that it won’t last.

If you forgo the “ready to hang” option and purchase a work of art that is “ready for framing,” there is one decision you have to make before you meet with a professional framer:

Do you want this artwork to last? That is, do you want your artwork framed to archival quality?

These two questions are actually the same question. A framer who works to archival standards will carefully use only materials that are acid-free: papers, mats, tabs, adhesives, even distilled water to moisten adhesives rather than tap water. Why? Because acidic materials are extremely destructive over time, and the destruction they wreak on artwork cannot be reversed. Yes, some acid staining and degradation could be partially restored with careful painstaking techniques, but it cannot be made new again. It’s better to go acid-free from the beginning. Museums use archival methods for all matted and framed art.  If you want your art to last, go archival. With this in mind, be certain the framer you choose is able to work to archival standards. Ask.

There are, of course, many other questions you can explore with your framer: mat colors, whether or not to float-mount a print with a deckle edge, to add glass or not, choices of frame. But these are personal aesthetic questions for specific artwork, questions that will allow you to develop a long and trusting relationship with your framer.

By |June 7th, 2016|articles|1 Comment