Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Lace, Flowers and Twine

Today was a good day! I set off early in the morning to accompany my friend as she looked at some property out of town. She picked me up at 7 am and asked me if I was ready for an adventure! ALWAYS!!! I am always open to an adventure!

I was bundled up because it was so cold and windy.We turned off the road and drove down a 1/4 mile driveway nestled in pines. We arrived at a large clearing and parked. We got out and proceeded to freeze (well I did). It did not stop us though from wandering. What a charming place!

We walked down to the lake which was incredibly pretty and incredibly cold and windy! The waterfront area was sprawling! There was a platform which we stood on at the water and the stairs that lead down to the water were stored on the platform. From where we were standing you could see a large portion of the lake. I could easily imagine waking up to this beautiful lake view every morning, and in the evenings, sitting in the nearby screen house watching the sunset over the lake. (you know how I love sunsets!)

We then walked around the houses and other buildings on the property. I saw potential in every nook and cranny! I know I am being vague here but it is not a completely done deal and I am keeping a confidence,

We left the beautiful woods and headed to a nearby town for lunch. We parked in front of an antique shop that my friend said we just had to go into. So we did. It did not disappoint! While examining an antique hutch I opened a drawer and it was full of vintage and antique lace AND the price was right! We will be going back there for sure!

I scooped up several of the rolls of cotton lace and brought them home with me. They will be perfect for making some more angels!

We had a lovely lunch at a little French pastry shop. I got a spinach/carmelized onion crepe with a light layer of goat cheese. It was delicious!

After lunch we did a little shopping and I picked up some natural and white twine and 3 large rolls of kraft wrapping paper.

When I got home, a package had arrived for me in the mail. I had ordered some little tiny vintage flowers from an ETSY shop called Ribbonsales. A friend had given me a small stash of these little flowers and I loved how they looked on my angel ornaments.  I did a search on ETSY and found some more of the burgundy roses and some additional pink roses that are a little bit larger but made from paper. They are so sweet! I asked a couple of questions prior to making my purchase and Ribbonsales responded to me within minutes of each question. She then set aside a special listing for me and once shipped that same day, they arrived very quickly.

It was a good day--.a day spent with a friend,  a little shopping, lunch, some good conversation, laughter--embellished with lace, flowers and twine! Simple pleasures!

Linking up with:

My Salvaged Treasures

Thursday, November 13, 2014

What Have I Been Up To?

What have I been up to? That question has been appearing a lot lately in emails from my bloggy and non-bloggy friends alike.  For the past couple of days I have been working on angels for the holiday. I created five of these red rose angels but a friend of mine snatched two out of the pile. After I get two more made, I will list them on my etsy shop. Hopefully I will finish them up tonight.

They are very sweet. She has a white, dotted swiss fabric ruffle at the bottom of her dress along with a lace ruffle. She has two layers of lace at the neckline.  Also, her wings are embellished with eyelet flowers that I cut out from wide eyelet lace and the centers are dotted with little white pearls. They are lightly stuffed with fiberfill to add just enough dimension. I guess I would say they are pleasingly plump!

The little roses and leaves were given to me by a friend. They were from her mother's vintage craft supply so I do not have very many of them. They are so nicely made compared to the ones that you find in the stores today.  I only had enough little red roses to make five angels. I still have many leaves left for future angels.

The dotted swiss fabric ruffle is easier to see in this photo. This angel has burlap and lace on her wings.

They are each packaged in their own little bags with some shredded kraft paper and then sprinkled with a few tiny little hand-punched paper stars--just heavenly!

Here is a custom angel done in gold and cream....

I found a few vintage gold roses in my stash. This is one of my favorite angels that I've ever made.

What else have I been up to?
I went to Joanne's Veteran's Day Sale and I purchased some sewing supplies, Christmas and tote bag fabrics, and have cut out bags out of two of the fabrics. (you will see soon!)

Other than that I have been busy with a few "life things"--you know, the things (little surprises) that come our way from time-to-time and steal the hours away.

Now, I am hoping to focus on making more holiday items for my ETSY shop, Christmas shopping and preparing food for the holidays. I love to cook!.....

........AND we have snow coming! Yes, that's exciting! I don't mind the's the darn cold that I mind. Unfortunately, we can't have one without the other. No matter when it comes, the season's first snow is always exciting to me!

So, what have you been up to?

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Recycled Knee Socks

My Toasty Arm Warmers

While folding some laundry this afternoon, I decided to take a fairly new pair of knee socks out of circulation. Though the chunky knee socks were received as a gift only last Christmas, there were already two holes on the bottom of one sock and three holes on the other.

 My husband noticed me looking over the socks. He asked, "What are you doing?" I told him that I loved these socks but wondered why they wore out so fast. He replied, "Have you seen your feet? They are like industrial grade sand paper!"

 I'll spare you the rest of the conversation!

Anyhoo, I couldn't throw them away. So I recycled them into arm warmers and I have had them on ever since!

I cut the foot off the socks, straight across. In the photo above, you will note the cut. (at top)

I then turned the socks inside out and folded the cut side over 1/4 inch. I pinned all the way around.

I stretched it over my sewing machine and stitched all the way around with a zigzag stitch.

I turned them right side out. Note the cute ruffle effect as a result of being stretched a bit over my sewing machine.

You can see the ruffled effect better in this photo.

I had to try it on. It's pretty toasty warm!

 I was wearing a fleece top, but I placed some lace around it to see if I liked it.

Got a better idea placing it in a crocheted lace sweater sleeve. I like the lace and I love the ruffle! It is so dainty peeking out from a lacey sweater and it adds quite a bit of warmth too. The sock cuff holds them securely in place just under the elbow and they can be pulled down over the hand or pulled up closer to the wrist.

So with lace,

or without;  you can turn all those gently used socks into an accessory that is not only functional in terms of adding a layer of warmth but also fashionable as it peeks out under a sleeve.

I think I will go digging for some more socks!

Linking up with:

Life on Lakeshore Drive 

MinettesMaze's DIY Sunday Click Here to visit!

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Fabulous Fall!

I love fall, that's no secret! It is definitely my favorite season. I love the fiery colors of autumn leaves, pumpkins and mums. I love the smell outside! I love the flavors of the season! The only thing that I can think of that I don't care for, is that point when I look outside and the trees are bare. That's when I realize the fall that I love has come to an end.

This is one of my favorite places to go in the fall! It's in Westminister, Vermont. It's a short ride from where we live in New Hampshire. It's called Cafe Loco. Inside is a beautiful vegetable stand but there is the sweetest little cafe where you can get home baked pastries, muffins, desserts, as well as breakfast and lunch. We generally go for coffee and a pastry but recently I ordered breakfast and we sat outside. It was a beautiful, warm fall day. Breakfast was delicious and the coffee was outstanding and hot!

They have a wonderful supply of pumpkins! I like to carve pumpkins that are tall rather than round. There is more room for face carving.

They have a beautiful supply of mums too! While we were eating breakfast, we watched a truck load of mums being unloaded from a truck. That looked like a lot of work! Aren't they gorgeous!

Such a nice place to go on a weekend! As a matter of fact, we are heading that way on Saturday. My middle daughter is coming home for a couple of days. She has not been home since Christmas! So we are going to take a couple of short road trips while she is here and hopefully still see some pretty fall foliage! She loves to visit the Vermont Country Store too so that is also on our agenda!

The Vermont Country Store is another fun place to visit!!! There are samples of the many dips, crackers, pretzels, cheeses, beef sticks, cookies, dessert dips, etc. We always leave there with a couple of old fashioned pickles. Yep, you reach into the old fashioned crock and pick out a pickle!! You should check out their online catalog: Click here to visit their site. They carry many items that we (some of us) grew up with but now are difficult to find.

We have had some of the most beautiful fall weather! It has been warm and sunny and we have enjoyed it. This weekend, however, the cold temperatures are moving in and there is even a possibility of some s..n..o..w! But I don't want to think about that right now!

Happy Fall and Happy Halloween!

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Teacup Exchange #2

Stephanie's Teacup Exchange!! 

I took part in Stephanie's Teacup Exchange once again. She blogs over at The Enchanting Rose. I  somehow missed participating in the last one so I was diligently keeping my eyes peeled for the next one.

What is it exactly that makes these exchanges more fun than a barrel of monkeys? Well for starters, I love picking out special little surprises for people. You might think it a bit challenging to buy a gift for a complete stranger, but I assure you it is not. In my case, Stephanie emailed me with Celestina's name, address, and blog title. I visited her at Southern DayDreams where she blogs and took a quick tour. Since I immediately fell in love with her blog and her amazing photos, I knew we had similar interests and tastes.  

I went back to my favorite antique shop where I purchased a teacup for the first exchange. I found a pretty little teacup for Celestina that had blue forget-me-knots on it. I also found a dainty little vintage napkin. I enclosed an organic tea, some honey and a Harvest Angel that I made. 
It is also fun packaging the items and finally shipping it on its way. In my case, it was heading to Texas (from NH) so I wanted to make sure it was safely packaged. I wrote FRAGILE all over the outside of the box, took it to the post office where it got THROWN into a bin (not so gently) which made me cringe. Within 2 days I received messages from Celestina that she had received the package and the teacup arrived in one piece!

HERE IS CELESTINA'S blogpost about her teacup package that I sent her, Click Here!

I think the nicest part of the exchange is that you begin as strangers and end up as virtual friends. It's not quite the same as actually sitting down with new friends and enjoying a cup of tea together but who knows? Maybe we can all convince Stephanie to throw a tea party the next time!

After mailing off the teacup to Celestina, I found myself running to the mailbox every day anticipating the arrival of my teacup and meeting the sender. There was no mail on Columbus day, but it did arrive the very next day, all the way from South Dakota! Thank you very much Lynn! I was pleasantly surprised by all the treasures she was able to pack into my package.

Isn't she a beauty? This dainty, little bone china teacup with gold edging is just lovely! My package was full of special little surprises in addition to the teacup! It also came with some locally (South Dakota) manufactured popcorn. It is not pictured here because, well, I ate it! It was so delicious!

I loved the words on the little notecard!

I love the vintage look of typewritten text. 

These sweet little flowers were tucked inside the pink, hand painted envelope. 

Aren't these cute? I love the pastel colored yarn! These actually have multiple uses as mug pads, coasters, dish cloths, face cloths etc. 

I received several packages of vintage appliques!

....and my first ever roll of washi tape!

A handy little notebook and a ribbon flower!

....and last but not least, these little postcards which are reproductions of vintage postcards. I almost missed these as Lynn had packed so many treasures into the box. I felt totally spoiled!

In addition to receiving my package from Lynn, I also received a very nice thank you note from Celestina on the same day!

Very sweet!

.....and as I am writing this post, I am sipping some hot Chai tea (in my pretty teacup) and enjoying a slice of homemade cranberry cake! Now that's a perfect Saturday in my opinion!

Don't forget to check out the following blogs:

The Enchanting Rose by Stephanie. She is the hostess of this wonderful teacup exchange. I happen to love the particular piece of music that plays on her blog!!! 

Here is as link to all the teacups that were exchanged: Click Here!

Southern Daydreams by Celestina. She is the recipient of my teacup. 

The photos on both of these blogs are extraordinary!

I am not sure if Lynn has a blog but once I find out, I will update this post and include a link if she has one! Thank you again Lynn for such generous, thoughtful gifts and....

Thank you to all three of these gals for scattering some sunshine!

"Those that bring sunshine into the lives of others, cannot keep it from themselves." 
James M Barrie

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Sewing with Paper--Odds and Ends

I tried to focus on summer stuff! Honestly I tried! But in the end I failed. I even made my first three loaves of Pumpkin Bread. Delicious! Never before have I started baking Pumpkin Bread this early in the year. So with the cooler (but oh so beautiful) weather, I have instinctively been drawn to all things FALL!

This morning, I played around with paper and tried to use both summer and fall patterns. I don't want to rush fall for those of you who are still firmly planted in summer. My roots seem to be planted in both seasons but may be spreading unintentionally towards fall.

I wanted to make up a stash of gift card envelopes. Generally when I give a gift card as a gift I grab a couple cute little tins or boxes in the store to "wrap" them in. They are very pricey! I picked up one that was $8.99! So, I decided to make some of my own, they are even lined on the inside with a coordinating paper.

A peek inside

Very easy! I just traced around a gift card and left an extra 1/4" around the outside for the front. Then I traced the pattern that I used for the front and added a flap. You will need to cut two sets--outside and inside ("lining").  When stitching on the sewing machine you just have to keep in mind that the card has to fit inside.

You don't have to be too picky about the sewing. Little discrepancies in the stitches adds a little shabby (but chic!) touch to the envelope.

They are pretty cute! And free! Great way to use up scraps of scrapbook paper.

This is my favorite!

Then I stitched up a heart ornament. I stuffed that as well. I added some burlap patches, a burgundy craft button and a little bedazzling jewel, scraps of lace and finally a rafia bow. 

Who says you have to use only fall colors!

I have many lace, ribbon and fabric scraps. This is another project that can use those little scraps up!

Then I made myself a little garland to hang on my hutch. My walls are already gold. So to add a little color, I cut little pennants out of 2 burgundy prints. They look more pink here but they are a deeper shade in reality.

It just adds a little festive touch to the room.

Below is a work in progress--my stuffed pumpkins.....have not decided how to embellish them yet, they are made from kraft paper bags. I stitched two pumkins (front and back) together. (Before stitching I cut a little trap door on the backside. This allows you an opening to stuff it.) Then I just quilted it with a zig zag stitch.

I will let you know how these turn out. 

That's all for now. Have a nice weekend! It's a beautiful day here in NH! Hope it is where you are too!