Wednesday, June 25, 2014

In the Shop Now

I have had several requests for more ruffled flag pillows in the shop recently so I took a few days to restock. I also wanted to show you my new chair.  I needed to replace a chair that had become so tattered it couldn't be saved. I could have recovered it, but I just didn't love it enough anymore to bother.  We ended up looking at several stores for a new chair and I couldn't find anything I loved, and even though I had a fairly generous budget available for replacement, I am notorious in my cheapness frugality.  So I checked our local consignment shop and found this beautiful creamy wing chair. It's comfortable, fresh looking and smaller than the old chair so the room looks bigger. It was also a steal at just over $100.  Score!
                   Back to the pillows.  I have several versions available , ticking and denim...
Ruffles made with a larger star print..
 And ruffles made with a smaller star print
 And, of course, gingham ruffles :>)
There's still time to order if you want one.
Are you ready for the 4th? It's only just over a week away!

Friday, June 20, 2014

Instant Collection

While at a recent garage sale I stumbled across a thimble collection that was being sold. $1 each. Believe it or not, even with all the sewing I do, all I had was a plain metal thimble. Utilitarian to be sure, but not pretty. Not like these little works of art. I quickly chose all the pretty ones and paid my money. It's an instant collection that I may have to add to. Pretty little things and useful too!
Which one do you like best?
I think my favorite may be the one that says Home Sweet Home, but I love them all.
On another note, in light of my last post and all things summer entertaining I wanted to share a link to a thought provoking post.  Summer is when we entertain the most, we have a tiny home but an expansive yard, so we do  most of our entertaining outside.  I'll admit, I'm guilty of a lot of the things listed in the post. Is everything going to turn out?  I need to paint this, I need to clean that, nothing is ready/clean/perfect, you name it. Excuses why it might be a bad time to have someone over. What I have found over the years though, is that nobody cares if it's messy, imperfect, or a little chilly outside.  What they care about is that I love them enough to want to spend time with them. 
 Do you entertain a lot?  If not, what is holding you back?
Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Dinner For a Crowd

Last Friday night Earl and I made dinner for our church's children's department volunteers.  It's an annual event and we have cooked for it for several years now.  You can see last years dinner here.  If you have been around that long, you may remember that last year not only did I have a broken foot, but the date chosen for the dinner was one of the coldest June days I have ever seen.
It wasn't that cold this was colder.
We woke up to a sunny, chilly morning but with a forecast of 0% chance of rain and highs in the low 70's. I looked forward to perfect weather. Well, it never reached more than about 64 degrees and the wind was blowing approx. 13-18 mph.
This may be the last year we attempt to have dinner outside, which will almost guarantee perfect weather next time.
At any rate, we could not have pulled it off at all without the help of the most awesome group of youth volunteers on the planet.  I was at my wits end when these wonderful kids drove in and took care of all the last minute details for us. 
 I had set up tables in the yard and planned on using brown paper as the table cover.  When I tried to put it on earlier in the day the wind was so strong I gave up. My volunteers got the job done while Earl and I put the finishing touches on the meal.  I had been fortunate enough to find enough brand new blue checked napkins at a garage sale to mix and match for our 25 guests.  The brown paper for the tables came from the dollar store,the geraniums were from the farmers market, wrapped in paper and twine by my daughter Victoria, and I used blue jars with solar light lids to light up the tables. Kind of down home and farm themed to go with the meal. Easy and inexpensive.  Decorating for guests doesn't have to cost a lot.
This dear girl volunteered to play her guitar and provide background music for dinner. It was beautiful :>) 
 Strawberry and pecan salad with strawberry vinaigrette
 Roasted New York strip
 Honey and Ginger carrots
 Twice Baked Potatoes. 

Warm Brownie Sundaes with vanilla bean ice cream, sweetened strawberries, warm chocolate ganache, m&m's and whipped cream.

Unfortunately, we were so busy cooking and feeding 30 people that I didn't get any more photos.
Again, the guests came prepared (mostly) for the weather and judging from the laughter and conversation they managed to have a good time in spite of the cold weather.
I'll be honest,every year the day before we do this we ask ourselves what we have gotten ourselves into.  It's a lot of hard work for one little kitchen, but every year when we are finished, and fall into bed with a pile of dishes waiting for us in the morning, we know why we do it.
We do it because we love and appreciate the time these people invest in kids. Because we love to feed people and because sometimes just because something is hard doesn't mean it isn't worth every single minute of work to make someone happy :>)


Monday, June 16, 2014

Touring through Blogland

I was recently contacted by Penny at The Comforts of Home and asked if I would participate in a blog hop.   I thought it sounded like fun, I am supposed to answer four questions and since I seem to have such a hard time actually getting around to writing my bio I thought this might help inspire me to get it done. ;>)

1. What am I working on?


 I have a lot of projects on the board right now. I have several pillow designs just waiting for sewing time, my ruffled flag pillows have been in such demand that I will be restocking the shop with some in the next week or two and I always have a quilt or two that I am slowly working on as I have time.


I am currently working on more Kitchenaid decal designs for my etsy shop.  There are so many ways to turn a plain white machine into a pretty part of the kitchen décor and I am having a lot of fun coming up with new designs and colors!


Earl and I are also looking into some ways to bring the business to life on a more local level. It’s a slow process but we have really great things in the works that I will be telling you about in the near future.

2. How does my work differ from others of its genre?


Although I have seen decals other places, for the most part they lack the detail and vintage look of what I am producing.  The process of creating the art and assembling the decals is labor intensive but the results are fun, colorful and unique.  I love what I do so the time and effort are worth it to me.  Of course my first love is always sewing and fabric design, so you will see more of that in the future too.  My fabric design is influenced by so many things, gardens, colors I see, vintage art.  I follow whatever pops into my head.

3. Why do I write/create what I do?


That is a good question.  I have always had a need to create, when my girls were little I did some craft shows, but the expense, hauling, sitting all weekend and hoping it didn’t rain so the crowd would show up was kind of a pain. I eventually gave it up while I homeschooled my kids.  I found blogging in 2007 and was immediately drawn to it.  My mother in law was battling cancer at the time and I began the blog as a way to not only keep far away family members updated on her health (she beat the cancer!) but also as a way to document and share my projects.  I was shocked when the first comment appeared from someone I did not know.  Over the years I have found a wonderful community of like minded friends through blogging. They have been the catalyst for my growth as an artist and designer. They have encouraged me, inspired me, given me advice when I needed it and given me the confidence to pursue my dreams. As a result, I can honestly say that blogging has been one of the biggest influences in what I do, and Etsy has provided the perfect opportunity to make my designs available from  the comfort of my own home.

4. How does your writing/creating process work?


I like to do my own thing.  As a blogger you can’t help but be influenced by current trends in color, and what is popular now, but I tend to steer away from doing what I see everyone else doing. I most often design items that I would like in my own home, but can’t seem to find anywhere else.  This Spring’s seed packet pillows for instance, I couldn’t help but think they would make adorable throw pillows mixed with my beloved gingham. I need to get more of those in the shop! As for my writing process, I pretty much sit down and bang out my thoughts just the way I speak in real life.  I’m a shoot from the hip, fly by the seat of my pants writer, which is pretty much how I approach everything else.

 And now that you know a little bit more about me, let me introduce you to another blogger who I love to visit!


"Hi, my name is Patty and I blog over at Lemon Lane Cottage.  I started blogging to connect with other like minded women about decorating, crafts and life in general.  But what I found while typing over the years is so much more.  I still post about our cute little cottage and my passion for creating but now I'm sharing with friends.  I hope you'll become one of them.  xo, Patty"


I hope you'll run over and say hello to Patty, she does beautiful work and shares a lot of fun things!

Monday, June 2, 2014

Welcome Sweet Summer Days of June

Can it really be June already? May came and went quietly it seems, such a gentle month it was hardly noticed. But June promises a little more excitement right from the start!
This weekend was Victoria's Bridal shower, put on by some of the lovely ladies in our church.  What would we do without friends?  There was a lot of baking, cupcake decorating and work that went on by these dear friends who gathered to shower my girl with things for her future home:>)
 I grabbed my collection of milk glass footed compotes and filled them to overflowing with snowball bush, hot pink carnations and little pink flags. One of my friends made pink and white candy hearts for the tables.
 Tables were festooned with tissue paper puffs and crepe paper
Delicious goodies were made :>)
And after the shower the entire family came over to meet the groom and his family at a big family cookout.
The weekend was made even better by the fact that I flew Victoria's darling big sis and brother in law home from New Jersey so her matron of honor could be with her for the shower. What a wonderful family weekend we had!  And now the clean up....I'll catch you all in a few days when I've had a chance to catch my breath :>)  And how was your weekend?