walking on eggshells

walking on eggshells/URBAN DICTIONARY:  To watch what you say or do around a certain person because anything might set him or her off.

I’m trying to notice when I’m walking on eggshells.  When I do, it seems like an invitation for some growth.  I’ve personally mastered some pretty sophisticated avoidance techniques…I’m working on it.  I will work on it for a lifetime.  I’m choosing to celebrate when I have a little bit of awareness that I’m walking on eggshells and at least thinking about what’s required of me next.  Sometimes just one boot in front of the other, no matter how small the steps are is the best we can do.

Lisa Lillibridge walking on eggshells dakota

tall tales of cowgirls & cowboys

cowgirl-boots-printed-skirt-railroadcowboys-and-road-trips cowgirl-boots-and-a-chevrolet-lillibridge  old-cowboys-railroad-dreaming-lillibridge

These are images I created from my photographs one night this week when the house was quiet and I stayed up late.  The cowboys are from photographs I shot at the Burke Stampede Rodeo in Burke, South Dakota.  The boots are mine.  The railroad shot was taken in Sandwich, Massachusetts. The Chevy truck I shot in New Orleans.

A pair of 7buck thrift shop boots…

and a few stolen hours at my studio.




What’s the object in your life that connects you most to who you are?


My boots that are the equivalent of my “blankie”.  They are comfort.  They are the ideal footwear when my back hurts.  I do have to admit that I feel a little more bad ass on the days I wear them. I love my cowboy boots.  I wish I could tell you that I was a real rodeo girl in growing up in South Dakota, but I was not.  I had a horse named Honeybear.  I rode in a few 4H rodeos and I have the awards for participation in a box in my basement but that is about the extent of my “rodeo days”.  Sorry friends, I know for your own amusement you have made me a real rodeo queen—I can easily live with your exaggerated stories.  They loom large in my own head too.  I do however, know some real rodeo queens if that helps your narrative in any way.

I think it’s important to have those objects in our lives that connect us to a certain part of ourselves.  My boots keep me tied to my South Dakota roots.  They make me feel more grounded and connected to the prairie—my interior geography.  Today they are necessary in my life and I knew the minute I woke up that this would be a cowboy boots sort of day.  Do you have something you wear or carry with you like a talisman?  I would love to hear about what that object is for you.  Please post a comment or send me a photo (lllillibridge@gmail.com) I think others would be interested too.




a few of my favorite things…

a few of my favorite things

I want to make prints of favorite things and then have fabric printed to create something. This is a quick stab at a print. My cowboy boots. Town Neck Beach. Travel (Italy). Coffee.

There are so many other images to play with. The road. Truck stop cherry pie. Flowers. Family. Pickup trucks. Rain. Books. Art. Tacos. Television. Friends…on and on. Send me a few of your favorite images and I might just make something from your photos. You just never know.

These boots were made for…

Lillibridge hand painted boots 1-13

Lillibridge boots lying on side final

“Townes Van Zandt is the best songwriter in the whole world, and I’ll stand on Bob Dylan’s coffee table in my cowboy boots and say that.” —Steve Earle

Perfection v. Distressed



Today I am off to finish painting some thrift shop cowboy boots. I found these boots and thought they had potential to be turned into a wearable work of art. Unfortunately I didn’t snap a picture before I sanded and primed them. So, these pictures show stages 2 and stage 3. I hope to show them to you finished tonight. I want them to look like they were originally this color, but that they’ve been worn for many years. I like everything distressed. Things too new and polished up make me a little nervous.

Here is the best example of this. When my son was three, I landed in South Dakota and he needed sneakers. My brother in law, George picked us up and we went to the mall to get him some shoes. I put new Adidas sneaks on him and they were just too white and clean for me. I had to rub dirt on them and scuff them up to look like he had worn them for a while. My family found this pretty weird. It is interesting how we are hard wired this way. Maybe it is like Coke v. Pepsi. Chevy v. Ford etc. It might be the same reason I really like scars and other imperfections. What is your preference?

St. Pergrine & my favorite cowboy boots



I bet you are wondering why I think these two items are related? It is simple they are two of my favorite possessions. I found the statue of St. Peregrine at a yard sale years ago. I did however recently learn that St. Peregrine is the Patron Saint of Cancer Patients. I was not raised Catholic, but I am a big fan of the Saints. The boots belonged to my son, Ellis at the age of 10 until he grew out of them at 10 and a half. I have worn them ever since. They are so broken in I never want to take them off and they remind of my roots in South Dakota. I may have only done a 4-H rodeo stuff for a little while when I was in middle school, but the spirit of the west is part of the topography of my soul. These boots are much more than footwear for me.

“Heading To Norden”

Heading To Norton

I woke up thinking about the Saturday nights of my teenage years and the dancehall at Norden, Nebraska was front and center in my hippocampus. I was so pleased to discover that there are still dances there all summer. The 2013 schedule is readily available online. It was a lot of fun dancing with those cowboys. This joint was something—benches lined the walls and those cowboys and ranchers would two-step over to us, put their hands out, tip their hats and try to teach us to dance. I can picture my friends dancing with these old guys and laughing so hard at the spectacle of it all. It was so much fun! So, this painting of mine must’ve been inspired by those memories whether I knew it at the time or not. I never would’ve had the confidence to wear boots with a skirt then, but I do now—no matter how ridiculous it looks. Have a fabulous Saturday night wherever you are!