Sunday, November 29, 2009
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Sunday, November 22, 2009
Need a gift for a baby shower, or for your favourite one year old? I've had a lot of fun making these soft blocks lately. They're so easy and customizable for whatever you're good at. I know some people crochet them, and some people quilt them, and, of course, I use felted wool sweaters and embroider 'em.
The idea is from one of Amanda Soule's books. Check out the thread in the pic above. It's hand-dyes from this shop. I just love the colors. It's called moonlit sky.
The stitches above are one of my new favourite combinations borrowed from crazy quilters. Herringbone, zig zag daisy and french knots. I think french knots improve just about any project, and now I'm remembering where all the blue thread I was looking for went...
So, this one I sewed and then turned inside out and stuffed with polyfill. It's very light and more "ballish" than "blockish".
The next one I made was sewn on the outside and again stuffed with polyfill. I really like the sewing on the outside better as you get crisper corners.
Check out the little hidden pocket that I made. It's just small enough for a baby to stick their finger in. I tried it out on my almost 2 yr old and she thought the pocket was a riot. I wish I'd gotten better pictures of this guy. My eldest daughter embroidered a happy face onto the green side in glow in the dark thread.
The third try had sewing on the outside again and was stuffed with wool scraps. It's much weightier and more square - doesn't bulge out on the sides like above. I think I like that the best, but I'm not sure what other people would like. It would definitely take longer to dry if you washed it. The last one's a gift that hasn't been given yet, so no pictures. I like to play with colors as well as textures. These are for babies and that's what they are interested in. There are lots of bumpy bits, ribs, flaps and extra soft wool.
For everyone who keeps asking, no, I won't be offering these in my shop anytime soon. I would have to price them too high for anyone to afford because of the work involved. You'll just have to have a baby and I'll make one for you. Or make one yourself, cause they're oodles of fun.
Thank you, Auntie Dawn for the lovely gift! I am very much appreciating it. I hope you will all check out Dawn's beautiful store. It's the people like this that make shopping handmade so worth it.
Friday, November 20, 2009
I want to make a crazy quilt.
The thing is that I know that this is the kind of project I'm not good at. It's big. How am I going to finish this before I go completely crazy and start something else? Does anyone else have this problem? I was born in the sign of the butterfly. I flit from project to project collecting ideas. I get distracted easily by the next great idea. I'm a great idea person, not so good with the follow through. Anyone else out there have the same problem? How do you deal with it? I betcha all artists have a bit of this.
Monday, November 16, 2009
This was a special request for someone who bought a peas pendant from my store.
It's made of peridot beads, reclaimed sweater felt and sterling silver.
The pin has been hammered to harden it.
Of course, I had to try it out on a shawl.
And the end of the pin is curled like a tendril from a pea plant.
I do hope the intended recipient likes it, and it finds a good home somewhere where it is used and loved.
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
The Household Bookshelf
I picked up this priceless book at an antique store this summer and have been itching to tell you about it since then. I feel like I’ve met a new friend and her name is “Housewife”. She’s earnest to care for her family the best way she can. She’s grounded in old-fashioned found-on-on-the-farm goodness but she’s busy and responsible for a lot so she has to take shortcuts when she can.
Here’s the preface:
“This cookbook is planned to meet the needs of the average homemaker if today who does not wish to spend her time and energy in preparation of food that she can buy easily and find satisfactory.”…
This excerpt on canned soups illustrates the mood of the book rather well.:
"Canned Soups: Naturally these cost more in money than the same soup made at home, but the cost in time is much less. Canned soups are of course seasoned, but to an average taste, so that further seasoning to the family taste makes them more savory, and combining two soups often produces a new one."
It is, ironically, followed for recipes for soups made from scratch. There is such a sense of the struggle to strike a balance between modern conveniences and old fashioned values. A struggle which I think we can still relate to today.
I know this dish as “Welsh Rarebit”, but, apparently, I am wrong.
“ Even the name is a matter of discussion. “Rabbit” is really what it should be called, “rarebit” being a sophistication of the original jesting name. A scoffer thinking to make fun of Dr. Wiley’s food decisions once asked him “As a Welsh Rabbit is neither Welsh nor a rabbit, why not seize them all as misbranded?” And the Doctor genially responded, “Yes, if it went into interstate commerce, being eaten in New York and the consumer going over into New Jersey to sleep, it would be misbranded unless it were eaten by a Welshman and a hair (hare) put in the dish.”
I have no idea what that means, but I love it!
On the back of one recipe cut from the newspaper was this news article of a harbour fire. I wish I knew more about it.
And I'll leave you with one last piece of advice, which I think is as relevant today as ever. At least I'm sure my children would agree:
Friday, November 6, 2009
Unfortunatly I didn't get one of the 'fresh shops' treasury.... was too busy setting up a facebook page for silver sisters and jumping for joy over selling the peas pendant. But don't worry, I took a good look at the construction and made a pattern so I can do another one if someone wants one.
My Pass the Peas Please pendant is attached to an article on etsy about undiscovered shops which is linked to the etsy finds email newsletter (see below) as well as a gift guide.
This is a big deal for little shops like mine because we need all the extra exposure we can get while we're still undiscovered. That's what it means to be undiscovered. I have to thank Cindy for the nomination. Be sure to check out her shop and see what the big deal is about blurple. And of course, I wasn't kidding when I said you should go see the original article. You would truly make somebody's day (you have no idea) if you purchased from them. And, then you can say you knew them when...
Thursday, November 5, 2009
Did you know it is the 40th anniversary of Sesame Street? Wow, that show has staying power. Now I'm pretty against most kids' TV out of principle and because it's just plain annoying to watch but Sesame Street has a soft spot in my heart. It's wholesome, it's funny, kids get it, adults don't mind it.
My favourite episode is one where Oscar the grouch (my fav character and alter ego) gets confused.
It goes something like this:
He's grumpy about something.
But he likes being grumpy so that makes him happy.
But he doesn't like being happy so that makes him grumpy.
and around and around.
It speaks to me on a metaphorical level but I haven't quite figured out the message yet.
What's your favourite Sesame Street episode? What really happened to Bert? and is it wrong to hate elmo? Life's big questions. Leave a comment, I'd love to hear from you.