Halloween is a time of year that has become one of the biggest holiday of the year. That was a surprise to me when I heard it a few weeks ago. And yet it shouldn’t come as surprise. The ads are in the newspapers, on the internet, and my mail box. The empty stores come alive with ghouls and skeletons. 

People talk about costumes (especially the children). It certainly is not secret that it is arriving. And I start looking around to find my traditional skeleton earrings, just for fun. And I shop for candy to give out to the little ones, and I try to find some kind of healthy candy that tastes good. If you’re thinking, “Oxymoron!” you are certainly correct.

Do you want to see something really scary? A look at your clock on Sunday morning and finding you are already an hour behind! So remember to set your clock back one hour before going to bed on Saturday night. Remember the old adage: Spring forward, Fall back.

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Bring an Office to Life

Who does your office say you are? When people look at your office, or cubicle, or perhaps your desk among all the others, what statement are you making about yourself?

Family photos are signs of a mom or dad. Unicorns are signs of a fantasy dreamer with a sense of humor. Calendars are signs of the well-organized. Do you notice these little things when you go to the desks, cubicles, or offices of others? Sure you do, we all do, whether we are conscious of it or not.

My office says that I am utilitarian. I have my tools around me: books, papers, pens, pencils, brushes, canvas, and camera. But on the wall next to me? I hang my 6’x6’ painting. It is big, bright, and bold. People who know I’m an introvert sometimes laugh to find I paint so boldly, but it is also who I am.

Not everyone can have a 6’x6’ painting where they work, but everyone can have coordinating pieces of desk supplies that might give a clue that you are more than you seem.

At Volcano Alley Creative Group, our goal is to provide products that show your style in your spaces: work, home, and out-and-about.

by :: Min

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Decorative Arts

We all have a traditional fabric or jewelry in our past, whether we know what it is or not. Many young people are not connected to their family traditions and roots, many might not even know what their heritage is, but everyone has them because this is how we use to live. Our great-great grandparents came from a certain region of the globe and in that region were specific ways to dress, dance, write music, cook and everything in their daily life revolved around the traditions of that particular area.

My mother’s family is Scandinavian, some southern Norwegian and some northern Norwegian, including Sami. The colors are bright and beautiful and the needlework is sublime. I am not so fond of many of the dishes they serve (Lutefisk, oh my goodness!), but the artwork is amazing. The music is upbeat and makes you want to get up and dance.

We don’t have too many traditions left in the world, it seems that everything is just turning into a monochrome of sameness, everywhere you go it is becoming the same. Sad, having a regional identity is a way to connect with the past generations, which are also being forgotten.

But on certain days we stop and remember a bit of our heritage by dress or drink or dinning. Be it green beer on St. Patrick’s Day, enchiladas on Cinco de Mayo, sausages at October Fest, or lefsa on Leif Erickson day, we have a little fun remembering that while as people we are all the same, we are also people who come from places and cultures around the world and we all add a bit of spice to life.

: : by Sarah

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Holiday Lights

When you think of Christmas, what comes to your mind? Trees? Santa? Stockings hanging ready to be filled? Birth of Christ? Angels? Shepherds? Caroling? Parties? Shopping? Lights?

The season is full of so many things but the one thing we see just about everywhere we go are Christmas lights! Neighborhoods are awash in brilliant colors—now, even rhythmic flickering lights. Downtown streets are covered in arches created by strings of lights. Lights glow around the city center Christmas tree. Indoors, lights glow from the tree, the candles, and the fireplace.

Holiday Lights

Christmas trees lights splashed across the walls one year. We’d never seen anything like it before, but that year our folks had a new tree. As the light grew dim outside [As night crept near] the tree lights began glowing ever brighter and brighter, moving out from the tree to encompass everything around it. It was amazing! Those little bulbs spread magnificent colors up onto the walls and plants. I called everyone in to take a look while I grabbed the camera to make a record of the sight. We all oohed and aahed for a while and enjoyed it all season. It is now the inspiration for our Christmas collection. We wanted to share this extraordinary phenomenon with you, so that you, too, will look for those extra little bits of excitement with your holiday.

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