Thursday, April 29, 2010

Pride and Prejudice and the PoPo Platter

Against my better judgment, at a book fair earlier in the school year at my son's middle school, I purchased Pride and Prejudice and Zombies.  I know, I know -- as a die hard Austen fan I should have resisted.  I've been trying to read it for weeks now, but it is slow going. 

What I've determined is that it is so not worth reading -- all of the really great parts are the parts Austen wrote that I've always known and loved.  The zombie scenes and zombie-fighting talk are just dumb.  There was only one point in the book where I laughed out loud at some of the additions to the original Austen and thought to myself, "How clever!"  That was it.  Don't bother.
Jane Austen: Accept no substitutes!

So, my husband was off work today and we went to lunch at our neighborhood Chinese restaurant.  He had a wild hair and ordered the PoPo platter, for lunch.

Why am I telling you what my husband had for lunch today, you may wonder?  Well, it's because of what happened after, when the bill and the fortune cookies came. 

My husband's fortune said, "Don't behave with cold manners."  And he shoved it across the table at me and said, "Look: advice for Mr. Darcy."

I was so surprised -- dazzled, even!  My husband, who never cares to read, was talking about one of my favorite books!  He was speaking Austen-esque to me!

I quickly surmised what had occurred.  You see, as a gag gift I had recently given him the Cliffs Notes to Pride and Prejudice.

"Have you been reading your Cliffs Notes?" I asked.

He snorted and said, "No!  Laurie, I've seen the movie at least 50 times!"

I had never thought of that.  Well, of course he has!  We've been married almost 19 years...
That just really made me laugh.

In other news:  Etsy sellers: have you seen the improvements over at Craftopolis?  I hadn't been there in a while but have noticed I'm popping up in a couple of Treasuries now and then so I took a peek and it's looking better than ever!  There's a way to see who has "heart"ed you, by day, and also a tool to help you catch the Treasuries when they expire.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Squares 11 through 14 and Pillow Progress

Feedsack kitty

Teacup in blue and pink

Button flowers

Inkwell and quill

I'm in the midst of sewing five pillows!  Most of the seams are done and I need to begin embellishing -- the fun part.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Renewing the Battle of the Bobbin

On Sunday I spent some time with my linens...sigh.  It is always so relaxing!

I had sorted out linens that inspired me for pillows some weeks ago; so, I just had to make final decisions and then prepare them for sewing.  I paired up pieces, and planned.



I love everything about creating with my linens, except the ironing - I burned myself not once but twice! I remember I used to enjoy ironing.  I must have been very young.

Here's the only piece I managed to finish, and really, it was a no-brainer because the velvet rectangle came to me already sewn (thank you, Linda Sue!)  I added some gorgeous old hand crocheted lace, also via Linda Sue, fancy stitches, and antique glass buttons.


Besides that, I have been busy photographing and listing linens for my Spring Sale -- with still more to go!

Here are just a few of those that I have newly added to my Etsy shop:





I already have more than 16 linen items in the shop priced $5 or less, and a bunch more that I hope to finish listing this week.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Project Runway Redux! (SPOILER ALERT)

How many of you are Project Runway fans like me?  I LURVE that show -- sincerely, it's the only series I will make a point to watch on television.  This last season started out a bit dull (and Heidi was pregnant yet again!) but ended with a bang.  And the one I wanted to win most of all, DID!

 Seth Aaron!  Woo hoo!

one of his designs


Last week I was rolling on the floor laughing at Sandy from Quill Cottage's blog post about her studio.  If you're a Project Runway fan, you'll like it, too!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Snow, Thrifty Finds, and the Weekend

This is what we awoke to yesterday:

It really piled up later, too.  When it stopped snowing, it continued with the rain on and off.  It was about 42 degrees but the wind made it feel much colder.  The worst part is that at 4:30 p.m. my son drove off about 3 hours east (where the storm that had left us headed) on another camping weekend.  Have I mentioned the blahs I've been having?

And what a wind!  It blew all night.  We sleep on the second floor, on a corner lot, and so we get the full force, plus all the assorted sounds of I-don't-know-what (gutters? chimney caps? cows?) blowing around.  I just lay there thinking about Ben being lifted off the ground with the wind and deposited in Kansas.  (He was already almost in Kansas, anyway.)

Now it's Saturday morning and it's snowing and blowing, but the sun makes an appearance in between so I think it will clear up.  I had planned to go to this but the weather's too bad to drive the 2 hours.  Disappointed!

Yesterday, since we were snowed in, I took some time to photograph my latest crop of thrifty finds:

The sugar bowl is huge and has such a great patina, don't you think?  You'll recognize it as Homer Laughlin.  This is something I passed up at the same thrift store 3 times until it was finally on sale for 75% off!  The little tea or chocolate pot next to it is German.  Sweet shape, huh?


I am in love with the Jackson restaurant ware shown on the left -- that color!  I bought a set of 20 pieces and plan to use it this summer as our everyday dishes for a nice change!  The dinner plates are the long oval shaped ones.  I would love to find a few more.  The little plate on the right is a variation of a set I had and sold long ago - it's Myott and I just love the softer robin's egg blue color and the hand painted details!

I already had the McCoy planter on the right in yellow, but like this color much better so I had to have it.  Almost all of my McCoy lives on top of my kitchen cabinets -- I love it!  So colorful!  The creamer on the right is Santa Anita ware and the best part is the pretty blue handle and...

...the swirl inside!  Doesn't it remind you of a cappuchino?!

I try not to buy tea cups but I'm currently just in love with the pink and red tones.  I also can never pass up a pretty transfer ware plate like the one in back...especially  not for under $1!

The faded hand painted design on the front of this cup is just so sweet!


I loved the fact that this plate was NOT faded, and now need to research the German  back mark; does it look familiar to anyone?

Left to right: "Much Virtue in Herbs, Little in Men" -- this is hand painted on two tiles, then framed -- wisdom from Ben Franklin!  The little daguerreotype (I think that's what it is) was especially sweet because of the reverse (shown below.)  And of course, a prettily stitched blue jay.  I have a thing for blue jays.

Last but not least, I found a little bag full of stuff I bought at an antique shop on our ski trip to Glenwood Springs last month:

A really beautiful piece of old lace that someone had embroidered -- this will go on a future crazy quilt.

More embellishments...

...the most special of which is this butterfly.  I don't know if you can see it, but the top wings are added on in 3D over the bottom ones.  Sweet!

I hope you've enjoyed these pretty things!  Have a lovely Saturday, and please don't comment about how warm and lovely it is in your neighborhood, or I might really go over the edge...

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Puppies are a cure-all

My blah-ness has continued this week.  In an effort at cheerfulness, I visited my friends with the puppies again.
How they've grown!  Look at those chubby little paws!


Their little ears are popping up and they're beginning to look like the Cardigan Welsch Corgis they are!

Few things in life are more cheerful than watching a brood of puppies play...or puppy kisses!

Want a puppy?  Here is more info.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Garden container fun!

I wrote an article for my examiner.com page featuring a couple of my blogging friends who had creative ideas for garden containers, plus a couple of my own.  It's here if you'd like to join in the fun!

Monday madness

Yes -- I know it's Tuesday but I'm talking about yesterday, when I was madly typing away.  I was listing a bunch of the linens in my Spring Trunk Sale!  Here's a sample:





Prices are lowGo see!

This is just the beginning -- I have oodles more to list and am looking forward to sharing all the linen love with everyone!

And, hey, have you listed on Etsy lately?  I was pleasantly surprised that they've made a few changes to their listing tool.  Especially nice is the ability to browse for all your photos and then choose upload at once.  (That was a long time coming, huh?)

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Etsy Blogger Street Team Blogger of the Month: Magdalene Jewels

This is my monthly post where I introduce you to another member of the Etsy Blogger Street Team.  This month the lucky blogger we're featuring is Pam from Magdalene Jewels.  Pam has two Etsy shops: Magdalene Jewels, where she sells her lovely jewelry creations, many featuring Swarovski crystals, and Magdalene's Knits, where she sells scarves and many sweet baby items.  Here are a couple of my favorites from each shop:

 
Swarovski Crystal Hanging Earrings of Pink Crystal Teardrops

 
Crocheted Baby Moccasins in Sage 0-6 mo.
SWEET!
What I love about her shops is that she features the supplies of other Etsy shopkeepers, and highlights this in her shop information.  I really like all that crafty cooperation!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

A rainy Saturday and a case of the blahs

I have the blahs today.

I think because it's gray, foggy, and rainy.

Not only that, but my son is camping nearby in the forest, where it's grayer, foggier, and raining more heavily.  I didn't sleep much last night, as I listened to the rain on the roof, and imagined my son shivering in his tent listening to the rain on the canvas.  I've resisted many urges today to drive over, pick him up, bring him home, cook him soup, and wrap him in a blanket!

On the bright side, I saw the first color in my garden so far: daffodils.  They're stunted and short, but shock yellow.  A little further away my purple hyacinths are peeking up.  It's very strange that they're blooming at once, but I'll take what I can get.  (I would have taken a picture for you, but it's so cold and wet and gray out...)

I have managed to do two squares on my embroidery project:


A silhouette
 

A little house and tree (spells contentment to me...)
I'm not sure whether or not I'm done with this square

I've also been working on a collage for my friend as a homage to her aunt.  She hasn't picked it up yet but I don't think she'll mind if I share a peek with you:

On Thursday night I went to a crop evening and did 11 pages.  My family album is coming along very nicely and it's heartening to be making progress.  I'm up to about 1973 now and, though I still need to finish my childhood and then scan my mother's childhood photos, I can see the end in sight!

Here's a picture of me from that era, when I was about 5:


I love my late '60's dress, and the saddle shoes!  That's my brother with me, in our backyard.  It's Easter morning and we're happy with our chocolate bunnies!  (Little did I know that a couple of years later I'd become allergic to chocolate, and only get white chocolate bunnies every Easter for years afterward. I can only eat white chocolate in small amounts to this day...)

Fact: we never got Easter baskets growing up.  In fact, I still to this day have never had an Easter basket!

At the crop evening, my friend Natalie let me try a new product by Tim Holz, called Distress Crackle Paint.  I used different colors to paint a few pieces of chipboard.  It dries quickly and then it crackles:



Nice, huh?

In other news, you may have noticed on my sidebar that I did go ahead and sign up for Silver Bella!  I'm so looking forward to the entire experience of it!

It's raining even harder now, and my husband won't let me go get my boy!  I think my blahs will turn into blues if it doesn't dry up!

Tell me how you're weekend's going -- it might help cheer me up!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Bits and bobs from my trip to Oklahoma

When we were visiting Jenni and her family in OK, we went out for some antique shopping, of course.  Here are some of my purchases:

This pretty little pillow that someone made by hand, using pretty trims, beads, and crochet lace.

This colorful, unfinished cross stitched rooster; it will be a great addition to some farm-style linen creations I have in mind!


I really liked this little mid-century dog pen holder!

Some wonderful composition books that are full, and an old stenographer's notebook full of shorthand.  The little needle books shown with them were gifts from Jenni's father, who is an antique collector (but Jenni's not -- it skipped a generation!)  Her parents also sent:


...these amazing sewing baskets!  I adore the floral design on the yellow and green one with roses!  It was chock full of supplies, including a pair of pinking shears, which I had been needing! The little wicker one is so sweet!  Both are vintage.  And not only that...

...knowing of my button obsession, Jenni's mom sent me a container she'd been throwing buttons into for years.  It was so much fun to poke through the huge pile of old buttons!

These are just a few of the ones I pulled out to show you -- there are so many wonderful examples in that pile!  How sweet are my friend's parents?  It's easy to see the apple didn't fall far from the tree in Jenni's family!

If you're completely tired of my blogging about buttons, stop here!  If not, click on "LINKS TO THIS POST" next to the little envelope icon just below - this will bring up the longer post with more buttons!