1.31.2012

Surprise Fun Mail!


What could be better than fun mail? 

SURPRISE FUN MAIL! 
Special thanks to the extremely talented
Nanette of Freda's Hive for the lovely tea towel.

Nanette utilized Spoonflower fabric for this gift, 
then bound the edges with a coordinated bud print.
I'm hanging it up as my calendar in the sewing room
before it makes it's way into the kitchen.

Thanks so much Nanette! 
Be sure to stop by her blog for some serious eye candy & inspiration.

Heather

1.27.2012

Embroidery & 30s Finds




Thanks to Fab Mama who sent some 
stitching guide treasures!

I've been going through some of the 30s reproductions
and looking through Vintage Notions this past week, 
looking for a nice whip up.

Happy Sewing,
Heather


1.25.2012

baby quilts


I'm playing in fabric! 


I've been rummaging though my stash to see if I could find a nice set 
of material for a baby quilt or two...
if I keep it up I might have a few piles to choose from. 

You know, it occurred to me
that if you haven't met me in real life {and maybe even if you have!},
you probably think I rarely finish ANY quilts....
most of the baby & toddler quilts I've made have been 
for charity or gifts & 
I didn't even consider taking photos. 
So going forward, I'll be sure to snap a shot and share.

I'm really looking forward to some quality time in the studio
{though we're still moving things around to make room for my Lil Miss}.
I never thought I'd actually look forward to sharing the sewing room!

Happy Quilting,
Heather



1.22.2012

Try Try Again


The third time's the charm on the French Macarons.


This batch went so smoothly...
less cocoa than the first batch
but yummy and chocolatey &


 perfect.
 {yeah, you'll rarely find me saying that about anything}

When I first saw the feet forming,
I clapped my hands like a giddy school girl
and jumped around the kitchen.

Can't wait to share this batch and make another 
few dozen just for fun.

Whatever challenge awaits you,
keep at it.
It's worth trying a few times to get it right.

Best Wishes,
Heather



1.19.2012

Pom Pom Tutorial


Today, we'll be making pastel pom-poms.
They're great little additions to your baby showers
and wedding showers, bridesmaids luncheons, little girls' rooms, etc.







Supplies:

Wire {we used floral wire}
Tulle in various colors to 
match your theme
Ribbon to hang completed poms















We happened to have petite tulle on hand,
you're welcome to use whatever size you have.
The larger size you use, the larger the resulting pom
(of course, you could cut the width down).

Remove the tulle from the roll if it has one.
Double the layers of tulle and begin with both ends 
lined up. This will be your starting point.



Make sure your tulle isn't twisted before you begin 
or you'll have to cut it apart and straighten with one hand
while trying to keep your gathers together in the other.


Carefully gather your tulle about a 1/4 to 1/2 inch from the width edge, 
gently pushing your wire through
the gathers about every inch or so.
Don't worry about doing this part perfectly---
the gathers will be opened up in the end and 
the fullness is all people will see.




I try to hold the bunched tulle in my dominant hand
while I feed the double tulle gently with my non-dominant.

As the tulle gathers become difficult to hold in my hand, I bend the wire into a U shape to prevent loosening of the gathers. Your wire should be forgiving.

Once I've reached the ends of the tulle, I cross the wire and twist to hold in place.




Once your tulle is secure and the wire has been twisted, it should look like this:


Next, separate the layers of tulle by pulling them apart to the wire or 
as close to it as you can without tearing your tulle.



Finish by making a hook at the end of the wire.
You'll be hanging your ribbon from this.


I prefer a thicker satin ribbon for hanging, but that's just 
personal preference. Thin works, if you've got it on hand.


Have fun crafting!

Heather
=D


1.18.2012

Pastel Pom-Poms


Munchkin and I have been working on some pastel pom-poms
and paper flowers lately. The sewing room will soon be filled.
With baby showers and wedding showers on the calendar, 
we'll be sure to share instructions shortly.

Happy Crafting! 
Heather





1.14.2012

Let there be FEET!


I don't know if you've ever attempted to make French macarons,


but my middle needed cookies for a school project and
(after talking him out of the fresh crepes he REALLLY wanted)
he decided on macaroons.
Macaroons are the American version and 
a completely different cookie than the French classic.


So, some experimentation was in order.
This is our second attempt...
the base bubbles are called 'feet'
and apparently, they're not a real macaron without them.
But I wouldn't have known that without scouring the internet
since I've yet to travel to France.


 The first batch is chocolate with chocolate fudge filling...again, not my idea. 
They're decadent and soft (and footless).
 But the kids at school won't judge too harshly.
{I hope}.

It turns out feet aren't just decorative...the meringue 
has a completely different texture with them...
a difference you can taste, for sure.
So, let there be 'feet'! 

For the second batch, we're playing with berry concoctions
and coloring...
blueberry, raspberry & strawberry (my fave so far).
The filling is thinner than I'd like, so more 
experimentation is needed...
But I haven't heard any of the taste testers complaining.

All my best,
Heather


PS You might have noticed the cookie has a blueish appearance----that's no accident. 

CONGRATULATIONS 
to our good friends Shelly & Ruben, 
currently awaiting the arrival 
of their little BOY!!!

1.11.2012

Playing Hooky



We are currently being spoiled by some unseasonably 
warm weather (50 degrees plus). 

*Not that I'm complaining, mind you.*

It has, however been difficult pulling myself away from the lovely sunshine 
{AND gorgeous green grass!!} 
to dig out the mess in the sewing room. 
Luckily, embroidery is portable and I'm slowly moving on the latest project.


Normally, at this time of year, we'd have a good foot of 'Lake Effect' snow 
on the ground everywhere, gray days, ice and no greenery until the spring thaw. 

I regularly obsess about retirement in a tropical location & try to make the best of 20 degrees below zero and harsh winds
that would chill you to the bones.

But not this year! We're having a
southern winter & it's delightful.
Eventually, we'll get back to what we do...
but for now, please bear with us as we 
soak up the sunshine
{and one of us, who shall remain nameless, points to some more ducks & geese}.
YIPPEE!!
It's a very rare treat to have a warm day at the lake in January.
We'll be making the most of this good fortune, 
playing hooky.

All my best,
Heather

1.07.2012

Likes & Needs: Figural Ornaments


More of the collection....
DH surprised me with proper ornament containers this year. 
All 7 (that hold 20 each) are full and some  back in cardboard boxes for the year. 

Doing the math?

 Yes, over 200 ornaments 
and I'm just getting started!

 LOL


I'm mad for the pine cones

and houses


and birds with clips

oooooh and fancy mercury glass icicles
and vintage mercury glass garlands, too.

Yes, please!! 

Can't wait to see what finds the way to my house 
in the coming year.

Happy Collecting,
Heather
=)


1.05.2012

Vintage Ornaments





I love the bells & started with these.










Just a few indents, always on the hunt for more of these.


Finials, Lanterns and UFO shapes are among my faves, too.

Looks like a long wait for Thanksgiving 2012----the day I get them all out again 
{and probably when I'll add a few more}.

Heather