Arting in Arizona

I spent several days this past week “arting” in an around the Phoenix/Scottsdale area. In some ways it wasn’t what I expected. Did you see the weather down there? Have you ever seen a snow covered saguaro cactus? Well I have now. They broke several Az weather records while I was there. That was unexpected. I thought I was getting away from the cold for a few days. We made the best of it, and it was still a wonderful and fun experience.

We enjoyed our visit to the Mesa Art Center where we met Beth Benowich, who suggested we go to two more places. The ring 1 25Celebration of Fine Art, and the Arizona Fine Art Expo. Both places were fabulous places to explore art. Both were in huge tents, which was quite a challenge with the rain. It rained so hard that sometimes it was hard to carry on a conversation because it was so loud. It was also cold. At the Arizona Fine Art Art Expo they had blankets and wraps at the entrance that you could borrow to stay warm. It was here that I bought my new favorite ring from Shell-Bell Designs, and a sculpture that we will hang on the back patio from Axton-Giddings.

Next up was the Fountain Hills Great Fair. fountain hills 1 25This was my third trip here, and although some of my favorite artists weren’t there (I’m guessing the down pour all day on Friday chased them away), there was still plenty to see, including two of my favorites from Colorado: Dukart Bells and Distinctively Handwoven by Luaretta Davidson. Some of my favorite art of the festival was made from recycled/repurposed items including some adorable earrings that I bought, and a lizard (which I didn’t buy, but I’m still thinking about) from Nipper Metal Art.

Whatever you love, whatever brings a smile to your face and joy to your heart is worthy of being. If you make art, good for you, keep making it. If you buy art, good for you, keep collecting. I encourage you to support the arts. It’s part of what makes this world beautiful.


Follow me on Instagram:

reggi headshot square new


My thoughts about today have to do with creating. It's good for the soul, regardless of what you like to create. It can be photography, woodworking, knitting, sewing, beading, weaving, jewelry, writing, baking, metalsmithing, drawing, and yes, even coloring. The list goes on and on. There is something so basic about the need to "make" that is ingrained deeply in us as humans. It is part of what makes us human. 

For me, I have an almost constant need to make, to create. I'm very fortunate in my line of work that there is a lot of creativity in my day to day business. I get to choose colors, and I get to work with different canvasses every day. Just having my hands on the different items -  backpacks, shirts, jackets, hats, hoodies,  etc. is fun, the possibilities endless.  Somedays, though, it's just not enough, and doesn't fulfill that need to create the way I want, need.

Then comes the big question - what should I make? I think a lot of people get stuck here. If you don't know what you want to make, how are you going to make something, anything?  My answer is to simply start.  The  intent is just to create. It doesn't have to be about the end result, but rather the journey. For me, it can be about color, it can be about texture, it can be about a fiber, thread, small purple art 25fabric or technique. Not having a specific direction can be intimidating, but liberating at the same time. I find that it is a great way to settle my mind when I am stressed, a great way to relax, and oftentimes it creates some wonderful headspace. It helps me  to work through things, thoughts, ideas. I can process whatever is happening that I am struggling with, an idea I'm working on, or it can be as simple as providing some time where I can just be with myself, within myself.

So I urge all of you to just go create. Don't worry about what you are making, just go and feed your soul with creativity. I'd love to see what you are working on. Email me, post on my FaceBook, or connect with me on Instagram. 

Follow me on Instagram:

reggi headshot square new



Reggi Coles




When I am asked to do a custom piece, sometimes they go together quickly, sometimes it takes a while. It seems cliché to say, but I really do wait for the inspiration to come. It may flow quietly, slowly, gently, or occasionally it comes through with such force and power that I have to answer it. Others are a happy medium and come at a pace that is easy to work with, and just moves a long a bit at a time.Grit

I usually take some time to process what the piece is to be, and I try to get a feeling for the colors it wants to be, and also what kind of elements and embellishments I will incorporate into it. There are so many techniques that I work with it can be a challenge to narrow it down and find the right one. Finishing the piece also takes some serious consideration. I can make it into a wall hanging with a traditional quilt finish, or I can have it framed. If I’m framing it, I still have to decide how to finish the edges. Should it be a raw edge, an embellished finish, or something new, and whether that edge will be seen as part of the piece, or hidden behind the frame.

On this piece, I pondered for quite a while what I wanted to do. It sat in the back of my mind for a while just brewing, percolating. First the color scheme came. In fact, I used the first piece of fabric I pulled out. When I read the symbolism of dragonflies, and blue dragonflies in particular I knew I had it. I never even looked at a second piece of fabric. After that the rest flowed smooth and easy. This piece didn’t want a lot of extra embellishment, and it didn’t want to be framed. It wanted simplicity.

It takes a lot of thought to choose your word of the year, and when I create a piece for you with that word (or phrase), I really try to imbue it with my own energy and positivity for you. I hope you enjoy this most recent creation.


Follow me on Instagram:

reggi headshot square new



The Studio

Centennial, Colorado
Local Art & Local Patrons