Hello! My name is Tiana, Mae is my middle name. I am so grateful that you made your way over! I have been avoiding creating a blog because, well, I am a terrible writer. So first things first, no judging if I miss a comma. Or two.
I get asked often how I make the things I make, where do I find supplies, how much of something I will need to do a project and how long something took to make. So I finally decided it was time to get over my fear of writing and give the people what they want! Whatever project I am working on that week, you should be able to find a tutorial here. I have to warn you though, some of these projects take time to create. I wish they could all be simple and quick but I have found that beautiful things take time and you will usually have a better product if you are putting in the time to do it right. BUT don't worry, there will be just as many easy peasy projects as there are laborious ones for all those small parties, showers and one day events.
A little background on me...I was born and grew up in San Diego, and moved to Texas when I was 12. My dad (my hero and go to project assistant) was in the Navy so that is how I ended up there. If it wasn't for the people here, I would have a hard time sticking around. I am all about that ocean and perfect temperature year round #oneday. I grew up playing soccer, not doing anything art related from what I can remember. My mom (most compassionate and gracious person I know) was an artist in her younger years. It is actually my brother, Marcus, who is the artist in the family. He is two years older than me and is one of the most creative and smartest people I know. I have been married to my beau, Jason, for 8 1/2 years now and he is actually the smartest most patient person I know and hottest! I love the Lord and am so grateful for the giftings He has given me to create things in my mind and make them with my hands. My first job was at Sonic (yes, I wore rollerblades) and I worked there for 7 years. I know your first question, "Are you supposed to tip the carhops?" Yes! Stash some dolla bills in your car for those peeps!
I earned a degree in education thinking that I would be an elementary teacher but student teaching gave me a really good dose of reality. At that point in my life, I loved children, but I realized that working in a school wasn't where I was supposed to be. While I was finishing my degree, in my free time, I started painting with oil and instantly loved it! Well, I didn't love oil, it takes forever to dry and therefore, takes forever to finish. However, it is great for when you make mistakes because it pretty much never dries and you can keep going back and editing or making changes, I just needed something different. But I loved painting, so I started trying other mediums like acrylic, watercolor, dabbling in calligraphy and other lettering techniques. I would make a ton of prints and paintings for friends and family and for our home but never really branched out of the comfort zone. I had felt a conviction to just starting painting and that is how I began but at that point is was just an outlet that brought peace and purpose in my life. I had zero plans of making it a business. In fact, I constantly questioned my abilities and probably made some pretty shady things as I learned what I was good at and what I wasn't good at. However, there were friends who would consistently encourage me and ask me to make things for them which helped me refine skills and gain confidence. They saw in me what I couldn't see in myself. Friends are a gift.
One day a friend who had just started a women's conference (Sparrow) asked if I would paint something for it so I did. The next year she asked if I could paint something for the stage and so I did. Both years they would ask for guidance on how to decorate the stage, where to put certain elements, etc and the next year she asked if I would be interested in decorating and giving creative direction for the whole conference. By this point it had grown so there were multiple stages and areas that needed design elements to be considered. I absolutely fell in love with this role. I had to learn how to make backdrops, installations, decorate a stage for a physical and video audience, create floral arrangements, and most importantly come up with an overall vision for the event that would set the tone for every person who walked through the doors. I realized that I love making beautiful spaces that would stir the hearts of those who walked in and would create in them excitement and wonder. I have learned through the years that you are always communicating something to your audience whether you intend to or not. I hope to communicate beauty. I hope to have the same message in every thing that I create, a message of a Creator who makes beautiful things. I want someone to be moved, to be encouraged, to be stirred and to be captivated. I want them to stop and consider the beauty and for that to create wonder in them. Like when you eat something amazing, you stop and consider the hands that made it and the elements that came together to make it taste amazing, it becomes more than food. It becomes an experience that you remember and maybe something that interrupts your normal routine and causes you to think rather than just to consume. Ultimately, my hope is that my work would point not to me but to a Creator that makes the most beautiful things.
I am so grateful for the way this little design business has grown and evolved over the years, and myself with it. I have had the opportunity to create some really cool and fun elements for a variety of clients and spaces. The elements I love creating most are backdrops and one of a kind installations so that is what you will see most of here. I will walk you through what supplies I use, what it cost to create and tips and tricks I have learned along the way. I am so excited to share my process and my life with you! If you have any special requests for projects or just things you want to know, comment and let me know! I will do my best to make it happen!