Sunday, December 28, 2008

linen gingham skirt

Well, she needed something to match this cardigan.

And, it also works very nicely with this handknit one.

The linen gingham is from Good-ness. I had not thought ahead what I would make with it. This wound up being a perfect project for it.

The pattern is the Lazy Days Skirt from here.

I wanted the skirt to have that pretty modern Japanese craft book look to it. I think I succeeded.The crochet lace trim is vintage and was given to me by my friend Anna during her big purge a few years ago. The pattern calls for ribbon trim but I liked the look of the lace with the fabric the best.

Friday, December 26, 2008

my new mitts

I made myself a Christmas present over the past few days.
I was craving a simple project to keep my hands busy and one that I could start
and complete quickly.

I made Ysolda's Garter Stitch mitts
They are made with Blue Sky Alpaca Melange which is 100% baby alpaca so incredibly soft
Color 807

I am so in love with the color chartreuse at the moment. A color that can look exquisite with so many of my coats.
I can see it with the red, black and blue one for sure and look it even looks nice with my new tights I got for Christmas.

miss molly mae

miss molly mae mae mae
all dressed in gray gray gray
with long black stripes stripes stripes
all down her back back back
and a white tummy
and some white paws
and a little pink nose
and some pink paws
and pointy ears
and sharp sharp claws and whiskers too
and green eyes
and a long long tail...

a silly song i used to sing and have now been singing in my head

molly - 1996-2008
may you rest in peace

we had to put our cat to sleep 3 days ago
i didn't want to mention it before christmas
it was for the best as she was suffering and has never been a healthy cat
still it is sad
she was a very pretty cat

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

some of these are old and some of these are new

Some of these are old and some of these are new. They are a few of my favorite ornaments.
I really love the Jennifer Murphy bird and my vintage angels. Also, pink glass ornaments are so special to me. I have to put those on the mantle tree so the little ones don't get to them.

The snowflake was crocheted by my Nana and my Aunt Lillian gave me five of them last week. I don't think she expected my reaction. I have always loved them and when I used to decorate my parents tree they were always my favorite and I did them last.My Mom still has hers and up until now I never had one so I feel blessed and now can have a part of her to share on Christmas with my family.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all.

Monday, December 22, 2008

origami wreaths

Here is a small project that doesn't take much time and has such a pretty result.
Just right for the end of the day or when you don't have much time but, feel like making something anyway.
I found the tutorial here but, found 6 pieces of paper to work better for me then 8. And, for the origami shy this is really easy.
Hope you have fun making them. I find it very relaxing which is so good right about now with all the rush and bustle of the holidays.

Friday, December 19, 2008

a bunny

Ms. S is fond of bunnies and we often see them in our backyard.

Stitched muslin, crochet lace, millinery flowers, embroidery floss and buttons. Some of my favorite things.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

a 'little red' lovey blanket

This is the hand stitching project I alluded to before. It's a lovey for Ms. S. It is stitched on organic cotton flannel and I used wool felt and embroidery floss to create this Little Red Riding Hood scene. The imagery is heavily borrowed from Japanese craft books.

If you are unfamiliar with lovies -they are a little blanket that the Mom sleeps with for a few nights and then it is given to the baby so that they can have their Mama's scent nearby. It's like a little security blanket. So, I am a little late on this one but, not too late.

I like the symbolism of Little Red venturing out on her own like Ms. S will do one day and the adventures she will meet along the way.

To finish I blanket stitched another piece of the organic flannel to the back. I will wrap it for her for Christmas day.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

gingerbread mobile and cookies

We made some gingerbread cookies on Sunday.

I had remembered a Martha Stewart spread from last year that I liked where she had made a gingerbread mobile. Here it is.
So, I made one too but, much less elaborate.

I had thought that they were hardened enough after a few hours of cooling to make the mobile but, I realize now I should have waited a few days as sadly all the angels have now fallen and suffered a rather untimely death. Currently their heads are hanging and it looks very silly so I need to fix that pronto.

Here are some other cute little cookies.

Oh, and they are really yummy too. The recipe is from here.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

more baby legs

So, I decided I had to make more baby legwarmers.
These are an early Christmas gift from me to Ms. S. She got them yesterday and I immediately put them on for picture taking.

The second one almost drove me out of my mind for no good reason. I kept making mistakes and taking out and starting over-ugh! I blame it on lack of sleep and the holidays but, they are done now and are great for sliding around in.

I love legwarmers over tights when it's real cold for myself too. Here you can see I made some for me earlier this year.

The pattern is here. I love the smock coat she did too so check it out if you follow the link.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

mushrooms on the windowsill

I've been obsessed with mushrooms (not the edible kind although I like those too) lately. Well, I've liked them for awhile and been collecting them. I can not tell you how many times I've put Tamar Mogendorff's mushrooms from Rose and Radish in my shopping cart and not checked out. It's sort of embarrassing although I did not hold back in ordering one of her birdcages and birdhouses from Tiny McSmall back last Spring and those reside in the bedroom of Ms. S.

So, it was only a matter of time until I decided I needed to sew them and I've got one more cut out ready to do (it's pink). The sewing is a combination of machine and hand sewing. Some buttons on top would be cute too but I'm thinking I might put one each in the kids stockings for Christmas and they would either be hazardous or just get ripped off.

The Story of Scarlet Elizabeth and Quinn Josephine

The Story of Scarlet Elizabeth and Quinn Josephine

Once upon a time there were two little girls. Their names were Quinn and Scarlet.

Quinn and Scarlet did not know each other very well but, their Mothers were the best of friends.

Quinn has dark hair and the most gorgeous blue eyes. She is very friendly and popular and also very loving. She loves her dollies and school and her dog, Leah.

Scarlet has blond hair and the most lovely blue eyes. She wrinkles her nose when she smiles and likes to bounce up and down on her Mama’s knees. She crawls around on her bum kind of like a crab but someday soon she will walk like your everyday sort of girl. She has a cat named , Molly.

Every once in a while Quinn’s Mom and Scarlet’s Mom get to see each other certainly not as often as they like although they think of each other often and send good Mama vibes to one another.
They also do not get to see each others daughters who are so special to each of them and wish they could share in seeing them grow up together like they did when they lived down the street from each other.

So, where is this story going you may ask….

Well, I have handmade a doll for both Quinn and Scarlet.
Quinn will be given a doll named Scarlet and Scarlet will be given a doll named Quinn so that they can be together and be close like their Mama’s are.

Now Quinn tell your Mama I love you for me and next time we see each other you can bring your doll and the two Scarlet’s and the two Quinn’s can have milk and cookies together.

The End

I made the dolls awhile ago but added the hat and coats in a style that Emily did and of course this is her doll pattern. I sent the blond one (Scarlet) off to Quinn with this photo and story and Scarlet will be given the brunette (Quinn) with the story and picture on Christmas day.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

village frock

Too small for her pretty red linen village frock (it's a size 2) but, one day she will wear it and stroll in the village... Okay, maybe she will skip and maybe perhaps she will have a bit of baguette in her hand and little crumbs will fall as she eats leaving her trail behind for tiny animals and they will follow her mystified by the beauty of her red dress and the little girl in it.

When that days comes she will fit her frock properly.

For now let's pretend she is a billowy angel floating on a cloud.

Friday, December 5, 2008

felted bowls

some new felted bowls have landed in my etsy shop...perfect for gathering small treasures.
hope everyone has a lovely magical weekend.
we will be getting our christmas tree and doing some decorating.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

she had other plans

The boy at preschool. The baby taking her morning nap...time for Mama to sew.

But...wait no nap - culprit - teething. I don't mind really for it means some extra time with the baby alone.

She likes silk thread the best. Obviously she has good taste.

On Saturday, Ms. S will be 10 months (already?) and although she doesn't crawl she can spin, slide back and slide around on her bum bum which if you ask me is kind of cute.

Monday, December 1, 2008

a peek inside perch

Originally uploaded by Bessilu
I thought since I have shown the inside of Mackey Blue and some of you were curious what Perch was like you might want to take a look at the inside of the store. There are more on Bessilu's flickr. Go take a peek.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

dollhouse walls

I've always loved dollhouses and when I saw in the Fall issue of Small magazine a dollhouse that was just walls I knew I could try to make something similar but with an antique look to it.

I decided to use books and looked for old books that had interesting inside covers. I found many at Mackey Blue so I will be constructing one for the boy as well with images of motorcycles and maps. This one here is not really finished because I am still working on figuring out which glue to use so the inside spine does not show but, I was so smitten with my idea I didn't want to wait for show and tell.

So basically, all you do is find old books with interesting papers on the inside ( or you could use the outside of a hardcover as well if you fancy the look of it) and this is the hard part make sure you don't feel any deep love or interest for the books because you will be ripping them apart. Tear 2 or 3 pages at a time until you have ripped out all the pages in the whole book (don't worry the initial shock and guilt will leave you after the first 5 or so tears) and then figure how many walls you want. I used 2 books for a total of 4 walls for these. Then glue ( or not) the inside covers together against the spine leaving them in a bent position and line them against the next book.

Add some dollhouse furniture, people, a miniature tea set, some art for the walls ...voila!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

vintage crochet

I suppose my old baby clothes could be classified as vintage:)

I've put together another sampling of crocheted items from the closet of Ms. S that once belonged to her Mama. Here are two skirts, four hats and a pair of mittens.

I'm convinced that my Nana must have devoted several years to making clothes for me. I wish I could tell her how much I appreciate them and how now my daughter is wearing them and will continue to do so for several years.

My Nana (that's what we called my Grandma) apparently never worked from patterns either which is amazing. I'm told she couldn't understand them.

Monday, November 24, 2008

inventory weekend

good morning
how was your weekend?

ours was up and down but, mostly up. friday night i did a little knitting and watched a movie - the first time i have sat down all year to watch one! it only took 11 months-ha! we watched 'lars and the real girl' which i thought was a really cute movie. saturday, we went to lunch with the kids and i worked on some inventory and then we were off to hoboken to drop some items at mackey blue and visit my coffee girls. sunday, the boys did yard work and i worked on some inventory for perch home with a quick outing for some drinking chocolate. there also was a touch of sickness and teething unfortunately but, all seems well today so far.

i had intended a little sewing on a dress but got sidetracked to inventory and completed 3 smocks, onesies & some button bobbies which is always something one needs to keep up with so i'm happy with the result. oh, and i also got a little more work done on that little gift i'm making for the baby which involves flannel, felt and embroidery.

Thursday, November 20, 2008


These dollies are now all sewn up which is good because not much crafting is getting done this week. The kids are sick, I am sick and well I'm about 200 yards into knitting a new sweater (I'll show you soon) and have some intentions to embroider tonight but we will see how long I last before I pass out. Every time I go up to the craft room I sort of start a bunch of things and feel like I'm spinning with all my ideas and not enough focus to actually do it. Then there is the mix of making to sell and making for myself confusing me all the time. I did however trace and cut out a pattern for a new dress for Ms. S. Somehow, making clothes for my little girl is one of the most satisfying things. I like the process from beginning to end-the piecing, the ironing, the sewing, the final reward. But, it will have to wait because the couch is calling my name right now and a little sweet something else I'm planning to make for her.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

housekeeping and cupcakes

For those of you reading the blog through bloglines go on and check out my new header and let me know what you think. I got the cards from one of my most favorite shops- Parcel in Montclair, NJ. The owner of the store is a Nancy too. The store is too amazing for words.

What else? I updated the garage sale image and started a Twitter account partially because now I can say I am tweeting on Twitter. I thought it would be fun for all those random tidbits I'd like to share but maybe don't warrant a blog post.

Here are two cupcakes. One for me and one for you (actually I already ate one so both of these are for you) for reading and commenting and generally cheering me on. Thank you!

Monday, November 17, 2008


The boy is three.
We had a party for him yesterday and it was a blast.
There was a robot. There was a rocket which turned into a balloon/bubble machine.
There was helpers to open presents.
There were fake moustaches for all the boys to wear
There was food and of course cake -chocolate with blueberry cream cheese frosting and blue sprinkles and spice drops & cupcakes -yellow cake with chocolate frosting and rainbow sprinkles.
There was music & screeching and running and jumping.
Goodbye 2. Hello 3.

The birthday wishes are from his classmates. I went last week and brought apple muffins and read the kids a story. I love the boy who wants to give him all his cars. How sweet is that.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

for your purse

I haven't had much time or energy for big project sewing lately which makes me a bit crazy but, it is what it is.
I had the itch to do something and these were very well received gifts last year so I thought I'd make another batch.
They are tissue holders for your purse. I suppose they could also hold business cards or credit cards if you wish.
I think I'm going to send these off to Mackey Blue soon.
They sew up super quick and easy and sometimes that's what we need, right?

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Toast Wristwarmers

I knit these over the past few days. I was looking for a quick satisfying knit for myself. Often, I make smaller wrist warmers with buttons but was looking for something longer that would work as sleeves. I had been wanting to try the mohair ones in One Skein for years but wasn't sure how I would feel about the mohair.

I used Malabrigo yarn for these and they turned out very soft and lovely.

I based them on this pattern and used size 9 double pointed needles.

Oh, by the way, I did learn magic loop following the Knit Witch's tutorial on You Tube but, I wanted the double points for this project because sometimes I like them and we can get along and be friends.

Yes, I changed the photo.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

birthday quilt

Here is the lap quilt for my birthday boy who will be 3 on Sunday.

I'm so glad I started this early enough as you see I've finished with just a few more days to go. The hand-sewing of the binding took forever (okay 8 days) but I worked on other things too and of course life and kids and such.

I'd like to sew him a robot (since he is having a robot party) to go with Spaceboy but, we will see how the week plays out.

It feels so good to have accomplished this and I really love how it came out although I wouldn't say it was perfect. It's my first quilt and, it was my resolution to make a quilt in 2008. So, I can check that off the list.
I can assure you it will not be my last quilt either.

I hope my little boy loves it as much as I do and that it keeps him warm and cozy for years to come. He is all into making nests to stay warm and cozy.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

november artist series

This month I am the featured artist at Perch Home

I spent part of last week readying items for the store. I hope to take some photos of them displayed there soon.

Here is some of what I brought but there was quite a bit more including hand knits for women and babies, felted handbags and bowls, jewelry, home decor, smocks, onesies etc.

Also, I have been busy putting the finishing touches on Little M's quilt this week and working a little on my hand knit inventory and turning some of the aforementioned buttons into bobbies. I did some felting this past weekend as well. A new clutch and some bowls.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

button jar

Halloween was so much fun this year. The kids were bears. Little M was set on being a Polar Bear (he decided months ago) and Ms. S was a little brown bear. Little M really got Halloween this year and loved the kids with scary masks and trick or treating which I think is much more fun in the suburbs going from house to house.

We also took a drive to my parents yesterday and us girls had a tea party. My relatives own a antique/tea house in Avon, NJ and this is our second three generation tea party we have had. It's so much fun. The boys had some time at the beach.

I also managed a quick trip to an antique store in Pt. Pleasant and I was on a mission for buttons (not that I didn't want to stay and look for a bunch of other items on my list and poke around but my time was limited) and so I found my jar and a couple of rhinestones ones and some with the initial 'S' which is just perfect for you know who. Above is some of the loot.

And, I'm not the only one around here with a love of buttons. That's my boys arm there behind the jar.

Did you all have a nice Halloween? Are you all thrown by the time difference? It's hard to deal with the dark so early and then the babies/kids get all confused.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

mischief night

You never know what kind of mischief these two are going to get into....


of the baby that crawls backwards

the hand

and of the almost 3 year old behind the hand!

Ms S. is wearing one of my baby dresses that my Grandma crocheted here.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

the handmade dress

It's become pretty obvious by now that I really love making clothes for my daughter. I don't see an end to this obsession. Thank goodness she has a good sized closet!

The latest addition is a new dress sized for a one year old. Since she is approaching 9 months and already has plenty of 6-12 months clothes I decided to jump ahead. This looks pretty big even for a one year old so I am contemplating making the smaller size anyway. We'll see.

The pattern is from The Handmade Dress and is called Miss Madeline.

I used fabric I had bought at Purl last Winter. It is Windham Fabrics Presents Colonies Archives c. 1850 which I'm not sure is available anymore. The color palette and pattern are very soothing and definitely seem to have an old Colonial or Amish look to them. For the apron part, I used a vintage cotton eyelet handkerchief. This pattern was very easy to follow and I see myself doing this one again. I'd like to try it out with and without the apron again and use the embroidery pattern that came along with it.