Monday, December 29, 2014

My Family

Hello, dear friends.I hope that you all had a great Christmas with family and friends. I feel a little sad that it is over, and especially sad that my daughter and her family have returned to Florida. 

This was a pretty exciting Christmas for me as it is the first time that any family members besides my dad have come up here to spend Christmas with us. We usually celebrate early just prior to the holiday when we go down to Florida to pick up my dad and bring him back here for a few weeks. This year he was going to come up with my daughter, Kym, and her family,  but at the last minute he decided to stay home, worrying that the hours in the car would be too hard on him. I was sad about that, but we did have a few great days with the kids. 

Following are two priceless photos from Christmas morning.

Tanner, who is 7,
coming down the stairs that morning...

Jordyn, who is 12, after opening a gag gift.
Hubby cleaned out his closet before the 
holidays and found this old yellow touch tone
trim line phone, and thought we would have
some fun with the kids.
Jordyn absolutely loved it.
Either that, or she has already
learned the fine art of diplomacy!
We plugged it into one of our phone jacks
and called my dad (an old phone company
retiree) from it. 
It still worked!...

The day after Christmas we decided to take some nice family photos outside. I am posting my favorite, taken on our front porch.

Shawn, Kym
Santa, Tanner and Jordyn...

I hope that you got to take some great photos of your
own Christmas!
Time moves so quickly and the children change so fast. 

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Monday, December 22, 2014

The beauty of The Season...

Santa shares the Christmas tree...

...with a sweet little owl.

They left a little room
for the smallest touch of red...

And a little flock of sheep
haven't forgotten...

...the real meaning of Christmas...

I hope that you are enjoying the beauty of
this Christmas season!

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Little holiday touches...

Happy Sunday! I hope that you are just about ready for Christmas. But are we ever really ready? 

Last January we completed giving our master bathroom a makeover, but since I had so much other decorating to do with my family coming to visit, I didn't think I would really bother decorating our bathroom, since no one but us really uses it anyway. As a matter of fact, I don't think I ever even showed it to you in its completed state (I will do that in a future post!). I promise.

The other day I ran into a new Dollar Tree store that had just opened. I couldn't believe all the nice things they had, so when I came home, my decorating-the-bathroom-spree took place in three minutes, and for three dollars, no less!

I fell in love with these little glittered deer
(two for a buck!)
and they now prance
below our shelf that sits over the tub...

And who could resist these glittered
snowflakes with bells?
(Also two for a buck!)

You can't decorate on a budget
for much less than that!!
Who can figure?

Have a wonderful evening, friends, 
and many thanks for coming by. 

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Christmas stockings from an old cutter quilt...

Happy Sunday, friends! 

This post is a little late in coming, but I'm finally getting around to showing you what I did with the old cutter quilt that you saw here.

My daughter, hubby and my grandchildren are coming up here from Florida for Christmas this year, bringing my dad with them. I really can't wait, and decided to do something special since they don't have a fireplace "down in the tropics". So here is what became of that old quilt.

Three Christmas stockings created for the left side of the 

...and four for the right side...

I embellished them all slightly different,
using vintage laces, doilies, and hankies,
and added some glitz with 
old rhinestone brooches and pins...

I wanted to be able to use them again
for whoever visits us in the future,
so I used glitter letters for the first letter
in each person's name.
They were 98 cents each in WalMart,
and even came with these sweet
 little swirly hooks,
which happen to match the hooks that I 
use for the ornaments on the 
Christmas tree.

It gave me such joy to be able to work on
that quilt while I was thinking about
the lady long ago who worked on it 
the first time.
I hope I did her proud!

And as for the large leftover piece of that quilt? 
I think that I may make a table runner or a 
tree skirt out of it,
but there will likely be no time to do that this

By the way,
I discovered an easy way of making these stockings
where you sew the stocking and lining in one
process, rather that having to make the lining
separately, and then sew it to the stocking.
I was in the process of creating a tutorial,
but will not likely have time to complete it
before Christmas.
Maybe I can strive for a "Christmas in July" 
next year.
What do you think?

I hope that your decorating is moving faster than mine!

Saturday, December 6, 2014

A Fabric Collage Book: Babies, Buggies and Black Velvet

Good morning and happy Saturday! I'm sorry that I've neglected this blog for awhile, but time seems to have gotten away from me.

I had mentioned in an earlier post that one of my art endeavors was to be featured in the Winter issue of Sew Somerset, and it hit newsstands on December first. It was an honor to be featured, and the really funny part is that the article that appeared behind mine was by a gal that I knew when I lived down in Florida. Things can't get much more coincidental than that!

Below are some photos that I had taken of my book before I sent it off to Somerset. I am sharing them with you since the publishers took their own photos, and mine are a little different. I hope you enjoy seeing them as much as I enjoyed working on the book, which was probably one of my "busiest" projects. I fashioned it after an old Victorian photo album, and the inspiration came from my growing collection of Victorian photos depicting babies in their beautiful buggies. I imagined what they might have been thinking when the photos were taken so many years ago, and this project was born.

Almost all of the items used were vintage. 
The cover is black velvet,
vintage laces,
a hankie,
and crinkled seam binding...

A button and lace binding...

The inside front cover 
and first page with
doilies and burnout velvet...

This is one of my favorite old photos,
and you have seen me use it before...

Use of a frog closure...

Silk, lace, and old buttons...

Doesn't she look like she is
watching something?

Pretty old sheet music...

More lace, buttons, silk,
and copies of the backs of
cabinet cards...

What was this beautiful baby thinking

The last page and the inside of the back cover.
I used the fringe because there was fringe
on this baby's buggy...

Instructions for making this book are in Sew Somerset! 

I hope that you have a great weekend, and thanks for
stopping by!

Thursday, November 6, 2014

A lovely cutter quilt: The Pontiac Star

Good morning friends!

I think that I mentioned a while back that I started collecting cutter quilt pieces. If you don't know what these are, they are old quilts that can no longer be used for their intended purpose, as they may have tears in them, be badly stained in some areas, have sections that are shattered due to the deterioration of the fabrics that were used, and so forth. Some of them are quite beautiful and crafters have been using them for a while for all sorts of things, from making stuffed toys to holiday decorations to pin cushions, and more. Folding them up and displaying them in baskets has also become another use for them.

If you read this blog you know that I love to decorate with neutrals along with a punch of black (who puts black ornaments on their Christmas tree, anyway?!), so imagine my excitement when I found a beautiful cutter quilt on eBay recently, one using only two colors, namely cream and black calico. The calico has a tiny print, and this was the only fabric used besides the solid cream. And there was only one other bidder (my heartfelt apologies to the other bidder). I'll let the pictures do the talking!

I gently washed it in my washing machine,
using plenty of Ultra Downy Infusions 
fabric softener,
the lavender serenity scent.
What beautiful piecing and hand-stitching
on this lovely old quilt...

I want to cry every time I 
envision it on a bed. 
But that is not meant to be. 

Even the borders are beautiful...

The defect on this one:
It seemed to have met a sad fate.
When folded in quarters
a torn out section is right through
all four sections.
Doesn't this look like a heart? 
This makes it all the more special,
as MY heart skipped a beat when
I first saw it...

Below you see it folded into quarters, 
with the hole completely through...

Here it is laid out on the bed in my studio,
folded in half...

There were no stains at all on this quilt.
Below you see the only other torn area, 
which is actually very small...

I bought this quilt for a very special purpose,
which I will reveal in the near future.
I want it to become a keepsake that
will honor the lady who put so much time
into this beautiful creation.
I cut off the pieces that I needed,
and below is the long and perfect piece 
that is left.
I also have a plan for this...

What would you do with this old beauty?
Can you guess what I will do with it?
You might find a small clue in one of the photos
More to come in a future post.

What creations are you working on lately?

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

A little family of mice...

Happy Wednesday evening!

I couldn't resist sharing these few Halloween photos of my son and his family as they went trick-or-treating on Halloween (they live down in Florida, as you may remember). My grandson, Jason, was Mickey Mouse, and his little sister, Avery, was Minnie. Aren't they just the cutest little mice you've ever seen? Sorry, but this grandmother is a little partial!

My son said that he tried to get some ears for 
himself, but the adult sizes were all sold out.
Fancy that!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

A snake in the grass, or at least one on the wind chimes!

Good morning!

This is a funny thing. Well, I guess that would depend on how you look at it. A couple of weeks ago Hubby saw our cat Ollie sitting on the back of the settee in the screened porch looking out of the upper part of the screen. Ollie was chattering away, as cats often do when they see a bird. Imagine Hubby's surprise when he looked up...

...and saw this...

Mr. Slither was enjoying a rest
lounging on our wind chimes...

Though snakes are not my favorite beings,
I must confess that it was fascinating
watching him at close range.
We think that he was a Black Snake
and not poisonous,
but did not make any attempt to find out.
Bear in mind that these wind chimes 
are about two feet in height, 
and Mr. Slither was wrapped around them
three times in some spots.
Since I took these photos through the screen, 
they are not very good, 
but I think you get the idea...

After a while he got tired of us staring at him,
especially when Hubby tapped the screen,
and he slithered off.
The snake, not Hubby.
If you look closely below,
you can barely see him in the center of
the photo moving down the thin branch of
the Tardiva Hydrangea bush that is in front
of the screen. 
And he moved like lightening.
This answered our question as to how
he got up there in the first place...

By the way, at our garden wedding,
we walked down "the aisle" to 
Pachelbel's Canon in D.
We bought these wind chimes
because they play that song.
I wonder of Mr. Slither would have danced to the music.