November 25, 2009
Etsy has been my infatuation for over a year now. It’s only the best place to buy handmade directly from the handmaker!
I can’t believe how inexpensive and pretty these board book pendants are from prettytheory.etsy.com:
And props to Pretty Theory for a memorable name, so that when a Lush employee complimented me on the bird pendant, I was able to recall the shop name and write it down for her.
Speaking of Etsy shops with GREAT BRANDING, I’m very impressed with Bananasaurus Rex at bananasaurusrex.etsy.com. I purchased a lavender and flax seed filled pillow from Bananasaurus Rex, and I was tickled that it was mailed in a Trader Joe’s bag. Great packaging and branding makes me think great shop because it looks so professional (and delightful) when it arrives.
And of course the pillow smells divine! Allen laughs at me when I put it over my eyes.
Oh dear, though…looking back at the site makes me want things!
Now, my absolute favorite Etsy site is retrofied.etsy.com. I purchased a custom “diaper bag” from Retrofied last winter, and I followed up this spring with a hobo bag in Joel Dewberry’s Deer Valley fabric:
Click here to see the fabric inside the bag! I think the worksmanship is great, and I love the color combinations. Shortly after I bought it, she posted her Raspberry Wasp bag, which I lust after, but how many bags do I need?
I’ve found plenty of jewelry on Etsy too, and I love that I can find so many different styles of jewelry in “one shop.” For example, I love this branch necklace I bought from thalassajewelry.etsy.com.
That picture comes from her listing here. And again, I’m finding other things in her shop that I love and want as I look back! But then I can find something completely different too, like the book board pendants from Pretty Theory!
My next Etsy post? Custom finds on Etsy! Or should it be gifts I’ve found for people? Or bookplates (because I could fill a full post on that!)?
November 24, 2009
Katie has a small obsession with Allen’s Adam’s apple. At first, she couldn’t remember what it was called, and we’d play endless games of renaming it: Adam’s apple, Adam’s pineapple, Adam’s grilled cheese sandwich.
She still likes to ask what it is, but we know she knows the answer now: Adam’s clementine, Adam’s banana, Adam’s lychee, Adam’s chocolate chip cookie! We love to hear Katie laugh hysterically (when don’t we?). Adam’s apple, Allen’s uncle…
And Katie does love her Tonton Allen and his Adam’s aardvark.
November 14, 2009
I went through my entire cross stitching stash and took pictures of all of the unfinished pieces. I’ve got enough projects to keep me busy for the rest of my life!
I started and set aside this project in April 2009. It’s called Toile Rooster, and it calls for a variegated dark brown/black for the rooster and the alphabet that surrounds it. I set this one aside because I picked up a new project that I just had to start right away: Pains of Love by Moira Blackburn.
Pains of Love is a pattern I’d never have purchased from just looking at the chart, but when I saw the colors in a stitched model, I was hooked. When I set this one aside, it was for Caroline’s stocking and to finish the piece that I entered in the Arlington Country Fair.
I started Bent Creek’s Teacher Row when I started teaching, in September 2005. I think what derailed this one at the time was starting teaching.
This is a Prairie Schooler design of an Amish village in the fall. The rectangle at the bottom will be a quilt hanging on a line. Allen wants me to finish this one soon, as he prefers more pictures and fewer words on the cross stitch pieces.
I love these little designs by JBW Designs. This one will be a Christmas tree made of the words “a very merry Christmas.” I started this in December 2007.
I started this piece almost five years ago. The silk birds are incredibly delicate (and a little bit blinding to stitch). I spent a lot of time adapting the pattern (particularly the text lower down on the piece), and I got hung up in trying to design a row of roots (which would make sense with the full text).
The Irish Blessing will eventually read, “May the sun shine warm upon your face, May the rain fall soft upon your fields. And until we meet again, May ____ hold you in the ________.” Ha – I’m too lazy to go get the piece and see what it actually says in the end.
This is a simple piece from Prairie Schooler’s Santa Rides pattern. I have always enjoyed hot air balloons, and I like the dark brown as the main color. Eventually it will also include a Santa and a few embellishments in a light yellow.
This is Marriage of the Minds by The Drawn Thread. I bought it around the time that Allen and I got married, and I don’t expect it to be done in time for our five-year anniversary this May, but one day… The Shakespeare quote on this piece was also one of the readings at our wedding. The blue and white clouds took me a while to do, and when I was finished, I realized that I was supposed to do it with two threads instead of one. The thought of pulling that all out was too much right then, so I put it aside. I’ll get back to it.
This is my project as big as a couch. Yes, it will be huge. I am thinking of finishing it with a quilt “frame” and backing, rather than a rigid frame that would be more difficult to move and protect. Our plan is to hang it over the mantle in the living room, but I think it would also be nicely sized for the upstairs hallway.
My most recent unfinished object is on its way to be done very quickly – maybe today! This is the 7th “day of Christmas” from Prairie Schooler’s Santa’s 12 Days of Christmas.
Alright – off the blog and on to stitching!
November 13, 2009
This week I finished Caroline’s birth sampler, adapted from La-D-Da’s Sweet Dreams pattern.
It’s at the shop for framing, but in the meantime, that means I’m ready to find a new project!
Choosing a new project is a delightful task in itself. I’ve got a good ten projects that I’ve already started and put aside. Those get high consideration. Then there are the many projects I’ve kitted up – that is, purchased the fabric and threads to go along with the chart.
In a category of its own is The Shores of Hawk Run Hollow, which I am stitching on 9 or 10 count fabric (like the stockings) with DMC Perle Cotton. For those of you non-stitchers out there, that just means “big.” The exaggerating, slightly rude woman in the cross stitch store said that this project would be “as big as a couch,” so I like to refer to it as my project that is as big as a couch. In reality, it will be approximately 2 x 3 feet. It uses an entire yard of fabric – think lap quilt size – and its frame is like a small table. I should take a picture. It’s amusing to look at. If I could just keep the cats off it…
Next are the larger framing projects that I kitted in Oklahoma in April. I started Pains of Love, but I have two others kitted and unstarted too. Not to mention the wedding sampler (Marriage of Minds by the Drawn Thread) that I “am doing” for Allen and me. (Our five year anniversary in May will not see that finished, mostly because I put it aside after I stitched a whole swath of it in one thread rather than two, and I just can’t bear to pull all that out!)
It’s possible too that I buy something new every time I cross the threshhold of the cross stitching store. So I now have Prairie Moon’s The Red and The Black kitted up. And during the last visit, I picked up La-D-Da’s All Our Troubles. At first, I took the saying the wrong way – you think I’m a big whiner? But it stuck in my mind, and I kept thinking that I would chose my troubles over others’ and that maybe it meant more about being thankful for what you have and taking the bad with the good. Now it will go on my wall, to remind me of that.
All those choices, and I decided to stall. I’ve been working on Prairie Schooler’s set of Santa’s 12 Days of Christmas since 2007. (In fact, I’ve been working on it since the month I started this blog, which would have been a good time to follow through on the project and get it done for Christmas!) I finished the first six of them during that year in Paris, but when I started the seventh day of Christmas and stitched a swan in the wrong spot, I stopped and set it aside. Since finishing Caroline’s sampler, I’ve picked it back up and will have finished the seventh piece this week.
I won’t be as optimistic in 2009 as I was in 2007; I probably won’t finish it this year for Christmas. But with each piece taking about a week, the time is there…if I use it.