Monday, May 30, 2011

Bags - Some Finished

Here is a sample of my bags that will be at the farmer's market!! This weekend I was able to get more done than I expected to and hopefully even more will get done during the week. 
The other day I watched the movie Nanny McPhee Returns with the kids. I must tell you that I wanted all of Mrs. Green's (Maggie Gyllenhall's character) clothes.
 Pretty country cottage floral skirts, embroidered peasant tops, and a kelly green jacket with satin ballerina pink lining were just some of the pretty things I saw. In fact I think Mrs. Green would appreciate these bags. 
The movie also has the coziest little cottage. So while the kids were fascinated by plot I was plotting decorating ideas. Are there movies that do this to you? 
Nanny McPhee Returns was just added to my list that already included Practical Magic, Amelie, and Because I Said So. All movies that I could watch for decorating and style ideas. 
So I think I may stop making bags for a bit - not long, just enough to decorate my house into a cozy summer cottage.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Handmade Crafts Blog Tour: The Empty Nest

I thought I would end the week with another Handmade Crafts Blog Tour!!! Don't you just love visiting new blogs and meeting new people?
So this week I thought I would feature the lovely Janet from The Empty Nest. She is a pure sweetheart. It's funny how sometimes you can remember exactly how you found a blog and I do remember when I came across hers. It was during a Barn Chick Blog Party  and while I was looking at everyone's posts I came across the most sweetest comments written by Janet. Her wonderful way of looking at things always puts a smile on my face.
Always so inspiring are her posts about how she slipcovers chairs. It will make you want to run to your local thrift store, find that ugly chair, and make it beautiful! In fact she has inspired me to try it ... just need to find that perfect chair. Don't worry dear hubby I won't be lugging in said chair in the house anytime soon.
If that isn't reason enough to visit her blog, Janet also makes amazing aprons, really truly amazing aprons. Best part is how eco-chic she is with her creations. Using old thrift store clothes she gives them a new beautiful life. One of my favorites, because I can't just pick one, is the Dorothy's Couture Apron. Oh, how that sweet embroidery speaks to my heart.
So make sure you stop by The Empty Nest, say hello, an enter her tote giveaway that is happening right now. Plus if you want to do a little shopping she shares her handmade goodness in her Etsy shop, How lucky are we?
(all pictures are courtesy of The Empty Nest - and like all pictures used in this tour ~ please ask the owner of the photos for permission to use them. Thanks)

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Making Bags

First day of the farmer's market is coming up FAST! Getting out some of my best vintage sheets, pillowcases, and linens ... cutting, sewing, stitching, and designing is going on in this house.
The agenda is to make several different types of bags - market totes, hobo bags, ruffle purses, embroidered slings, and quilted pocket books. Finding time to sew is difficult lately. The outcome will be worth it!!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Working Weekend

Usually the weekends are reserved around here for family time. Often I don't get to see my hubby during the week since he is at work when I am asleep. This weekend was different though. Dear hubby took the kids to his parents and I spent the day working on items for the farmer's market.
The sun did decide to come out for a little bit and I took advantage of that. It's been raining here for 6 days straight. My flower garden can't decide if this is a good thing or not. Taking a small walk I noticed flowers stretching out as if they were basking in the sun light .
Collecting some buttercups, bleeding hearts, daffodils, and some yellow flax I had a nice small bouquet by the end of my yard walk. Putting them in a turquoise mason jar brightened up our kitchen and I went back to work. I do hope Mr. Sunshine visits again this weekend.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Doodle Embroidery Block Quilt

My new exciting project is called the Doodle Embroidery Block Quilt. The quilt will feature 20 doodle drawings that were drawn by myself and hand embroidered. I know I was a tease about the details of this project and it did take all my might not to share it sooner. Hopefully you will love it as much as I do and want to join along.
The idea came into my head when I was doodling one night for my art journal. Looking down at the piece I thought it would be nice to have a quilt of all doodles. That was the ah ha moment. I began drawing something I knew I could stitch up. Keeping in mind the whole time how happy it is to even think about this sewing project. That is when the first block was born "I'm Sew Happy".
Tulips, sunshine, rain drops, and a dove are just a few of my little doodles that made it to the stitching process. Buttons always come to my mind when I think of sewing. Being that it is spring here, I tried to give the block a spring feel with flowers, a caterpillar, an ant, a butterfly, and a happy rainbow.
I had the design transfer to fabric for me - that is my least favorite part about embroidery, transferring designs.  The lines will not be erased with water like most transfer pens but it really made me focus on the lines. I had to stitch the design exactly how I had drawn it in order for the lines to not show up all over.
Funny how when I was finished with the last stitch I sat back and said "I'm Sew Happy" and that was the exact feeling it was meant to give. If anyone wants to join in and make this block quilt or if you just like this sampler pattern (it would also look mighty cute in a little frame) I have ordered 30 of them to put in my shop. Don't worry if they run out I will place another order and can reserve one for you, just send me an email. For a closer look just click on the pictures for a larger picture.
Now how would you like a chance to win one? Head over here for details.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Things to Look Forward to

After teasing many of you with my coming soon post the mystery will be over tomorrow. Best news is that it will be an on going project that if you would like to join at anytime you can. So that is something to look forward to.
Another little something is a blog swap I just signed up for. Micaela, my vintage soul sister and last blog swap partner, posted about it on her blog. Once I saw that it was about pampering and luxury I was in. Who couldn't use a little something extra just for them? Personally there has been a lot of good changes happening around here but often the beginning stages don't feel oh so great. This little swap could be that little something that takes my stress down a notch. If you want to join in (it's an awesome way to meet new great blog buddies) go to April Maybe's Blog before June 1st. Hope everyone has a great weekend - don't forget to look forward to the project post tomorrow.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Scrappy Scarf Fashionista

How do you get a 4 year old control freak to calm down? Well if she is a fashionista have her make a scrappy scarf.
Miss Aries has been into this thing where she wants complete control of everything and everyone. I could say "Aries I'm going to give you chocolate ice cream." and I would hear "No Vanilla!" So it's all about compromises at this stage. Do I really want to spend my time fighting with a 4 year old? Not really. Do I let her take complete control? Not really. So yesterday it was compromise day. I informed her that she needed to listen to me, eat her dinner, and no arguing, in return I would help her make a scrappy scarf anyway she wanted it.
Complete agreement on that one. Win!!! I let her have at it in my scrap pile. Cutting was done by her. Fabric scrap choices - also all hers. When the sewing machine started to sew it all - she wouldn't have that either. Advising that it needed to stick together some how she informed me that I needed to sew it all together because the sewing machine was too loud. It didn't really come out the way I expected it to but does it really matter. It's her scarf, she loves it, she wears it to school, she won't take it off, and yes she is sleeping with it right now.
P.S. Sorry for the bad pics (I'm sure scarf will be sticking around awhile to take more) it has been raining here for a week or more.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Farmer's Market Time

I love our local farmer's market and so much so that this year I decided I wanted to be a part it. If your items are approved by the committee then you can be an artist vendor 3 times in a season and I am happy to report I have been approved! All my handmade goodness like dishtowels, handbags, crocheted hangers, stamped spoons, children's clothes, blankets, garlands, and some other fun stuff I have planned will all be on display June18th, August 13th, and October 8th at the Lebanon Farmer's Market. If you happen to be in the area around those dates pop in and say Hi. 

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Handmade Crafts Blog Tour: Thrift At Home

I know I have been a little late on this tour - suppose to happen in April and it is now MAY. Time seems to be catching up with me lately - it has a funny way of doing that. So today I put my foot down and said today is the day to start the tour. I thought I would start my tour with Margo from Thrift At Home. Her blog is full of cool tips, thrifty fashion, and yummy recipes. Also her stories about her little ones will make you smile.
So here is Margo in her own words:
Why do you blog?
I blog a record of what I make/do as a homemaker and mother - so I can remember it.  It's also become a way to hang over the back fence, online, with other mothers and women to talk shop. Readers ask good questions and give me ideas and recipes - I love it!

What crafts do you like to do?
I sew things - clothes for my kids, a few clothes for myself (I want to make a dress this year!), kitchen things, quilts, ruffle scarves, flowers, marker/crayon rolls, curtains. . . I have dabbled in other things - knitting, card making, painting, flower arranging, jewelry making.

Do you sell your crafts online, in a store, or are they just for
you? If you do sell them for others - where can one purchase them?
I have an etsy store for things I sew: hotpads, hanging oven towel, ruffle scarves, and flowers. -
I also sell curated vintage patterns as I come across good ones.

What is your favorite blog to read?
 ooooh, hard to choose!  I read so many.  The Sartorialist is always interesting to me, introducing me to new style things, some of which are very inspiring.

Where do you get your inspiration from?
I pay attention to what I am instinctively drawn to, especially colors, and after a while, I start playing with those colors or combinations in fabric.  I am inspired by clever solutions people come up with in their homes, making do with the things they have on hand.  I deliberately allow limits in my art because those limits force me make new connections and solutions - for example, I use "found fabric," meaning I don't go to the fabric store and buy what I want.  I upcycle it from old clothes, a friend's stash, a creative reuse store, or the thrift store.

If you can meet one blogger and spend a day with them who would
they be and why?
 Anna at Pleasant View Schoolhouse. . . because her life seems attractive, from her blog, yet unusual.  She seems to have mastered the balance between housework and art, so I'd like the insider's view on that.

Is there any crafts you would like to learn how to do or have
taught yourself to do?
I would like to explore weaving because I have always loved getting close to plaid and studying the way the colors intersect and change.  I would have so much fun choosing colors to weave together - plus, you can make really useful items from a loom.
Thanks Margo for joining the tour. Your blog has inspired me to make some really cute business tags like your business cards. I ♥ them. So hop on over to Margo's blog Thrift At Home - make sure to say Hi and also there are some super duper cute ruffle scarfs in her shop (I'm not gonna post a picture you have to go see for yourself).
I will continue the tour next week with another wonderful blog and shop!
(all pictures are courtesy of Thrift At Home - and like all pictures used in this tour ~ please ask the owner of the photos for permission to use them. Thanks)

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Coming Soon

Something exciting arrived in the mailbox yesterday. It's a project I have been hush hush about ... but to you my dear readers I will give a special viewing.
More details will be coming soon - let's just say if you fall in love, must have it, want to make it - you will be able to as well.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Pulling Out the Weeds

Most of my day today was spent in the garden. Pulling out weeds, digging in the dirt, and lifting rocks I am starting to feel the body aches already.
I can't wait for the lavender, lemon basil, cilantro, and all the other herbs I planted to sprout up. Even though I used Miracle Grow I am hoping it doesn't really take a miracle.
A bird made a nest in one of eaves and all day I saw her feeding her babies or rather heard. Swooping in with something in her mouth you would hear tons of peeps and then a swift shadow as she left to find more. All the little peeps would quiet until the next feeding.
On the agenda next weekend is making a swing for the large tree. How great to sit near the garden swinging away while working on a new project, Damien just above me on the limb reading one of his many chapter books he is fascinated with lately (rope ladder is also on that same agenda), while Aries and Odyn practice burying Buster in the sandbox.

P.S. If looking for ways to save on Miracle Grow - try these coupons for Target. They might be able to save you a little bit :)

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Happy Mother's Day

I feel like the luckiest woman. My darling little Aries came homes from school Friday with a paper bag in tow with the words Happy Mother's Day on them. Cheerfully she ran with her arms wide open screaming HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY MOM!!! A little orange flower with a perfectly decorated container was a little shaken but rightfully earned it's spot on the window sill above the kitchen sink.
I hope all the mommies out there have a mother's day full of flower memories like my own!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Whatcha Working On Wednesday

Oh it's a happy day. Being someone who is hard to focus on one project at a time, I am excited to report that I have finished something and stuck with it entirely. I'm not saying that there weren't thoughts of other little lovely things to make dancing through out my head, but more so that I resisted those thoughts. The finished results look something like this:
The pattern is from the wonderful Alicia Paulson and it's called the Mina Dress. It was so much fun to do and was my first ever crocheted clothing item. Unfortunately I did not check the gauge - mostly cause I can't be bothered (yup I'm one of those people) and it doesn't fit Aries. It's more fitting for a little one that is 2 yrs old - Odyn do you want a dress? He stated he doesn't but some little girl will.
Aries wants me to make another one right away that will fit her this time but my hands need a rest. Does anyone else find that crocheting really gives your hands a work out? Next I think I will work on top secret mother's day gifts for the Fefes. Fefe is the word Damien came up with when he was little to call the grandmas   and it has stuck.
Another thing I have been working on is my garden beds. Hubby helped this weekend build a new stone path and stone borders. The bed that was there was more rounded and odd shaped. Plus the path was really hard to shovel and find this past winter. It looks 10 times better but now I just have to find a way to get rid of the red ants that want to take over. Plus I got the biggest mother's day surprise the other day, my mom and her husband Eric came down and did some landscaping for me. Now more than ever I want to put on those gardening gloves. 
So what beautiful things have you been working on?