Sunday, December 4, 2011

Saving the Planet

Sometimes recycling in your own home isn't enough.  Sometimes you have to bring recycling across state lines.

Fortunately that isn't a punishable offense.

Saving the planet, one bag of number 5 recycling at a time.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

New product line

Well, I did it.

I introduced droolies to this weekend's craft show.  (remember this post?)

Although I have some left, I sold quite a few.  I'd say they were a hit!

Look for these beauties coming to an etsy shop near you soon!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

And then? It snowed.

I'm a bit behind in posting the video I took of snowtober.

Little did I know when I took this video that there would be many downed limbs in the backyard and that the house would be without power for three days.  Thankfully, the natural gas furnace, water heater and stove all remained working.  I'm so thankful I was not one of the folks who had no heat or hot water.  I'm also thankful the power came back when it did.  Many went without for a week or more.  No thanks.  I can do a lot of "pioneer women" type things.  Surviving in the dark of night is not one of them.

Enjoy our first snowfall in CT!

ETA: just kidding.  I can't get the video to load.  Imagine big thick flakes, 32 degrees on the thermometer.  And all the leaves on the trees were still green.  Snowtober.  I'd rather not meet you again.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Hey Pumpkin!

5 hrs ago, all that was on my fireplace mantel was just a spot to collect things...speakers, birthday cards, photos of my god daughter which are considerably older than she actually is.  Red metallic candles from holiday decorating still hung on the sconces above.  The wreath on the front door was sporting sunflowers, and a tired orange ribbon that I *meant* to replace all summer.

Today was the day to clean up all the riff raff and get out the fall themed decorations.  I've been enjoying the battery operated candle that is set to come on around dusk and flickers in the front window when I pull in the drive, so it was time to pull out the coordinating decorations.  Gone is the wreath with the sad floppy bow.  It it's place a lovely harvest wreath with acorns and an appropriately fluffed leaf themed bow.  I know the mailman and paperboy will approve.

This, however, is my favorite Halloween decoration.

Yep, that pumpkin is from a ceramics place my grandmother frequented when I was a small child.  I can remember putting the candy I got trick or treating inside.  Somehow, I was allowed to keep that pumpkin and the candy in my bedroom.

In case you were wondering, the ghost I've had ten years or less...doesn't look much different than the crafty punkin' does it?  Not ALL 1970 something crafts look where did I put that macramé book?

And in case you thought I had it ALL together, I found this lurking in the breakfast nook...

Yep.  A snowman.  Maybe he'll just stay there for a couple more months...

Friday, September 30, 2011

Time for something new?

I recently was asked to make some bibs in a smaller size than I normally do.  I have spent time "perfecting" my standard pattern, and really wasn't interested in going back to the drawing board, and doing it all again. To me the bib size is part of my "signature" and I wasn't sure I wanted to change all that.

But the request was from a friend, and I just couldn't say no.  So I made them.

They are so adorable.  And they use up those pesky scraps that are too small for my "usual" projects (or some of them anyway).

So now I'm torn.  Do I take my bibs in a whole new direction and add this smaller, newborn friendly size?  

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Hey Monkey!

So I turned a year older this week.

My amazing co-worker, Lauren, made me the bestest birthday cake I've had in a long, long time.

Read all about it here.  Lauren's telling of the making of this cake is the icing on the cake (so to speak).

And she's right.

I loved it.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

So....there's this thing called a hurricane

I've never experienced a hurricane before.  Tornado, yes.  Hurricane, no.

It's been all about preparing for the worst and hoping for the best.  I've learned a lot -- like why you fill up your bath tub, and that putting tape over your windows is mostly over rated.  My car's got a tank full of gas, so I can charge my cell phone if the power is out (j/k -- kinda).  We've been filling various jugs with water so we've got something to drink.  I'm doing laundry.  Not because we'll run out of clean clothes, but to be sure there is sufficient fabric for projects.

I'm resisting the urge to cook and bake up anything I can think of.  Today is not the day for filling up the freezer...although I did fill up various containers with water to freeze to help retain the cold in our currently fairly empty freezer in the case of a power outage.

I did, however, bake zucchini bread.

We needed SOMETHING to eat in the dark.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Keeping Cookies

By now I'm sure you've surmised that I love thrifting and vintage and things that remind me of people near and dear to me.

This week's vintage, thrifty find has to do with my grandmother's cookies.

Both my Grandmothers were great bakers. Each had their own style and specialties...not only in what they made but how they were stored and delivered.

This lovely find 

reminds me of sugar cookies. My grandmother would make what seemed like endless sugar cookies decorated to perfection for most holidays. Orange pumpkins with current eyes for Halloween, hearts for Valentines day. For Christmas I remember a cookie cutter she had that outlined a mother and child which my grandmother frosted with a toothpick to get different colors in the outlines. (Note to self...ask what happened to that cookie cutter...). Grandma's tin was larger and deeper, but the top is exactly the same. We still have cookies of some sort stored in her tin every Christmas in Iowa.

My other grandmother stored her cookies in an equally unique tin...a storage/shipping tin for a film reel. They also make great storage for a pie, if deep enough. Haven't found one of those... yet...

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

A long time ago...

In a land far away...

(ok, not that far, but a few states from here)

I was going to my weekly ceramics class, and made a mirror for my new baby sister who had been born that day.

It was a simple mirror, with a chunky, clunky rattle on it and if I remember correctly my new little sister's initials.

Happy Birthday!  I'm so glad you were born!

Monday, July 4, 2011

Happy Independence Day

Hope y'all had a great three day weekend celebrating all the 4th of July means to you.

Special thanks to all who have served, are serving, or will serve to preserve the freedom that is easy for us to take for granted every day.

I'll share some more of the weekend adventures later this week!

Sunday, June 12, 2011


I've mentioned it before, and I'll say it again.

A good sewing day is one where the garbage can is full.  In my quest to destash and USE the fabric I have, here is the great accomplishment of this weekend:

(if I can figure out how to get the photo off my iphone and into my computer it will appear, why do you challenge me so?  Hey look!  I figured it out!)

So it's one small garbage can of scraps.  But it's full.  And I have stacks of bib pieces on the cutting table waiting to be put together in addition to the dozen that are waiting for me to turn them inside out.  Progress.

The failing this weekend was in my fancy sewing machine that has the fancy stitches I use to finish off the gems I sell in my shop.  The tension stopped working.  No amount of re-threading or cajoling resulted in a seam with an appropriate tension.  It's a problem when you can just pull the bobbin thread out, right?  So off to the machine doctor we go...I hope I can get out there this week before Thursday!

Luckily I have a back up plan.  My trusty machine that has been with me almost 20 years.  (How is it possible I can write that?  20 years?  WHAT?!?!?)  Thanks, Mom, for the best high school graduation present a girl could ask for.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

To Stash or Not to Stash

That is the question.

I listened to a podcast a couple nights ago and the podcaster was talking about sewing thru all her fabric stash. I mean all of it. She had one piece of denim left. She was debating how much stash she felt like she should have. What was the right amount to feel like you could just decide to go sew and have options of what you want to create but not so much that it would feel overwhelming.

I gotta tell you. The idea of walking into my sewing room and having neat, clean, uncluttered shelves sounds like a dream. I would be delighted. But the idea of walking in and seeing just one piece of fabric? That makes me uncomfortable. Really uncomfortable.

I've gotten very used to being able to solve a sewing challenge with whatever supplies I can find in my studio. In fact, I've started to feel proud about not always having to run out to get something (thread, elastic, etc) to finish a project. But how much it too much? How do you know when to say when? How many fabric bins in the basement of things that no longer fit in the studio is too many?

I recently visited a friend who has always been a person where there is a place for everything and everything is in it's place. Always. That's never been me. But it's sooo appealing. Realistically I won't likely ever be that kind of organized, but I'm definitely more conscious about how much might be too much.

So I've started. I'm attempting to use up my stash. If the perfect fabric or notion doesn't immediately make itself apparent, the project goes off to the side. The perfect thing is in there somewhere...I just haven't searched to the bottom of the right tub yet. No really.

Wish me luck. And if you're in the market for some sewing supplies...give me a buzz...I might have just what you're looking for!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Thrifty Finds -- Crafty Edition

A thirty percent off coupon for Savers.  How was this not burning a hole in my pocket?  How did I manage to keep it in my purse until the LAST day before it expired.  How could I not take a trip to Savers just to see if there was anything worth getting "on sale"?  I did.  And it was worth it.

First, for those of you who don't know Savers is a store much like Goodwill or the Salvation Army.  And you know I'm always in for a thrifty store to search for treasures.

In addition to finding a great black short trench coat which I needed to replace the worn out one in my closet and a couple funky scarves for my collection I always check out the crafty section.  I'm a sucker for recycling craft supplies that someone else never got to use, or grew tired of.  Vintage trims and fabrics are one of my favorite finds...some you just can't get anymore and the price is generally right, if you know what I mean.

On this particular trip the great finds were yarn.
How could I say no?  Four skeins of a pinky peach silk and cotton Noro and two skeins (albeit in two colors) of Cascade alpaca/angora blend.  I think I need to start scouring my "One Skein" books to see what gems I can dig up to turn these gems into some fun and functional projects.  I'm certainly up for suggestions.

What thrifty finds have you scored lately?

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Monday, March 21, 2011


This past Christmas I came home with quite a few treasures.

Nothing particularly fancy or expensive.  But near and dear to my heart.  It got me thinking about the other treasured items which I've already been fortunate enough to have as part of my daily existence.  So I decided to share some of those treasures with you.  Hopefully, this will be something that will prompt me to blog on a more regular basis.  At least for a while.  But enough about me...on to the treasure.

Today's treasure is simple.  A rug.  But not just any rug. One with some history.  My great (great?) grandfather was a weaver of rugs.  The "fabric" is denim that had outlived it's useful life as overalls, coveralls, etc on the family farm.  I've been surrounded by these rugs since I was a kid.  They would come out in the winter to help hold the snow, salt and just plain ick of Iowa winter out on the back porch.  My grandmother would use them in her house just about anywhere you could use a throw rug.  They're machine washable, and practically indestructible.  The loved, used and worn rugs are just as amazing as the never been used rugs.

At some point in the past 10 years my grandmother decided that each of her grandchildren needed a rug as a reminder of this man who is part of their lineage.  I was fortunate enough to end up with two that year--it's always nice when your grandma likes your boyfriend and gives him the family gift too.  :)

This past Christmas I got to choose another rug from the large rough wooden box that houses the few rugs that remain.  Here she is:

Brand spankin' new.  I'm so looking forward to adding the wear and love to this great rug, treasuring it for many, many years to come.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

It really is easy, being green

Kermit the Frog was wrong.

It's so easy to be green!

Everyone is brings their own bags into the grocery store, drug store, Target, fabric store, right?

This weekend we to it to the next level.  Produce bags.

I found these great bags on Etsy before Christmas, and bought a couple sets for gifts. AMKDesigns makes a great set of six produce bags with a pouch that holds them all together.  See?

Luckily one of my gift recipients is the guy who goes grocery shopping with me. ( See how that works?)
In addition to using the reusable produce bags, we were at a local "wholesale" fruit and veggie place.  Trying all kinds of new stuff this weekend!

What's your new eco friendly discovery?

Sunday, February 20, 2011

WIP Weekend

I love a three day weekend.  The feeling you have going to bed Sunday night knowing that there is still "one more day" is better than hitting the snooze button in the morning. ("Five more minutes!")

After a reasonable amount of weekend couch sitting, I started to tackle various works in progress.  Especially with my business, there are always started, but not quite complete projects lying around the sewing room...and other places.

So far I've managed to finish weaving in the ends on a baby blanket I knit for charity, finished off three (or four) knit dishcloths for the shop, tinked back 8 rows on another charity blanket to fix a glaring mistake, knit back those 8 rows and then some, finished two 1/2 done aprons, and added to the stack of 1/2 done bibs and blankets.  Sounds like a lot, right?  Don't look in my sewing room then.  :-)

Saturday, February 19, 2011


Everybody wants it.

Everybody deserves it.

Nobody thinks they have it.

Give it, to get it.  You've got to earn it.

Listen to Aretha.  She'll help you understand.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

I hope it fits

I'm enthralled with knitting tiny things for tiny people that I haven't met yet.

January's baby knitting was a Vintage Baby Cardigan out of some fun and sassy sock yarn.  Easy to follow directions, and a fairly quick knit.  Done within a couple weeks, including a decent amount of procrastination before actually doing the finishing work.

I used a three needle bind off, which may have been a first.  I also was blessed with my grandmother's knitting needle stash this Christmas, and I was uber grateful for the HUGE stitch holders I found in her knitting stuff.  They were super handy for knitting the various pieces of this pattern...there are only two seams afterall.

Isn't it cute?

What should I knit next? 

Thursday, January 6, 2011

What I did on Christmas vacation

One of my favorite things about vacation is being able to focus on the very few crafting projects that fit into my suitcase.  Usually I have a difficult time picking out projects to take along, and always have a list longer than there is actually time to accomplish, or room in the suitcase.

This time, it was easy.

A good friend of mine is having a baby.  Any day now.  I decided back in the fall that I was going to knit her a pair of longies.  I did a lot of searching on Ravelry and found many great patterns.  I finally picked one from  The website was very helpful when I questioned what size to make, and how to finish off the waistband, and what washing instructions I should include.

So I cast them on before Christmas, and cast them off before New Year's Eve!  This pattern is easy to follow, well written and super cute!

I can't wait for the next time I see these little pants, on baby Fuller!