Dark and drizzly this morning... perfect for candles and and Thelonious Monk while I work.
Tuesday, July 31, 2012
Monday, July 30, 2012
I was crocheting in my pajamas early this morning to finish this piece!
I used a heart-shaped vintage wood plaque, antique lace, and small crochet pieces to frame an original Antebellum photograph. I found the photo at a local Tuscaloosa antique mall and fell in love with the girl's dress and center parted hairstyle!
You can find this lovely pastel art work for sale in my shop.
Here is another example from the same series inspired by antique photographs-
Sunday, July 29, 2012
I've been keeping my eyes open for more abandoned treasures in my neighborhood since many of the students are moving before classes start next month.
I found this huge basket in a pile of household goods on the curb and new it would be perfect for holding yarn and knitting projects! I sprayed it off with the sprayer on my kitchen sink to remove any dust, then let it air dry.
I can't believe how many projects I can fit in there : )
I discovered this cabinet in the alley behind my house, it looked pretty beat up but a coat of Tung Oil Finish evened out the scuffs & scratches and restored the wood's shine.
The cabinet now holds books and covers the front of our for-decoration-only fireplace. The bottom of the fireplace has a weird opening that I'm assuming leads to the downstairs apartment - it's blocked with a piece of wood, but I have nightmares about one of the cats falling down there, so I try to seal off the entire thing as decoratively as possible!
Friday, July 27, 2012
Thursday, July 26, 2012
The sewing machine has been humming today while I work on filling orders. I took a little detour on my way to the post office to enjoy the summer weather and take some photos - I know that in the middle of winter I'll be thinking back to these hot days and wishing for some of their warmth!
Just look at that gorgeous blue sky!
Wednesday, July 25, 2012
My mom sewed me this incredible farm girl apron!
It has roosters on it, just so you know.
This one is blurry because I'm am swirling : )
Tuesday, July 24, 2012
My rescued mid-century table has had it's makeover and I couldn't be happier with the result! And I'm so proud to have completed my first furniture restoration project (although my arm is a little sore from all the sanding!).
This poor table was rescued from a dumpster on the UA campus - an unwitting college student must had had it as a hand-me-down and didn't realize what a treasure it was. Spray painted patchy red with brown legs, it looked pretty sad.
I don't have any special tools, so I simply purchased three varying grits of sandpaper and sanded the whole thing by hand. There are a few scratches where the paint is fairly deep into the wood, so I'd love to do an even more thorough job some day when I have an electric sander. When everything was smoothed out I rubbed in two coats of Formby's Tung Oil Finish to bring out the grain. The spindles were also a little wobbly, so I gently tapped them out of the table with a hammer and re-attached them with Gorilla Glue in addition to nails. The little table is functioning perfectly as a nightstand to hold books and cups of tea.
Now I'm hoping to stumble upon another piece in need of a little refurbishment : )
Monday, July 23, 2012
I found this adorable mid-century side table in a dumpster this weekend! Some unfortunate soul spray painted it bright red with patches of white peaking through from underneath. And spray painted the legs brown, too. I snatched it from the trash and sanded off a little bit of the paint to reveal nicely grained wood underneath - score!
Today I went to the hardware store for various sandpapers and supplies to refurbish the table and restore it's natural beauty. As of right now it's about 50% sanded and looking great... more photos to come!
Saturday, July 21, 2012
I took this photo of a pair of mourning doves earlier in the week.
This morning I am enjoying a cup of chai and getting ready to do some work on this project. I have a library book to return after lunch, so I'm sure I'll spend a while browsing the stacks, too!
Friday, July 20, 2012
"Take a rest; a field that has rested gives a bountiful crop."
I hope you have a restful, restoring, peaceful, beautiful day.
Here are some ways I plan to refresh myself over the weekend:
take evening walks
brew nettle & passionflower tea
use my herbal dream pillow
exfoliate (salt, olive oil, and lavender oil)
listen to music
I tweeted this post from the organic sister yesterday - a great reminder!
Thursday, July 19, 2012
Wednesday, July 18, 2012
Just thought I'd share a couple of funny pictures my husband snapped yesterday.
Yes, Macy is a very large cat and she has a very dramatic personality : )
Tuesday, July 17, 2012
A new piece for the shop! You can find it here.
Monday, July 16, 2012
I'm so pleased to have another crochet tutorial to share with you! This canister cozy is a great project for beginning crocheters since it is worked flat and uses just one type of stitch. The cozy is easy to customize to any size for your container, too, so you can use it grow plants, hold art supplies, store tea, or whatever you like.
For this project you will need an empty can (I used a metal coffee can), a small amount of yarn (mine is from here), a crochet hook that is appropriate size for your chosen yarn, scissors, and a yarn needle.
Begin by chaining enough stitches to fit snugly around the circumference of your canister. You want the fit to be tight so that the finished cozy will not slide off easily, so don't be afraid to pull a little and test the stretch of your yarn.
Begin your first row by working in double crochet. If you need a refresher on how to double crochet here is how it works:
- Yarn over hook.
- Insert hook in the next stitch to be worked.
- Yarn over hook.
-Pull yarn through stitch.
-Yarn over hook.
- Pull yarn through 2 loops on hook.
- Yarn over hook.
- Pull yarn through last 2 loops on hook (one double crochet made).
Continue working rows in double crochet until your work is about the same height as your canister. Then, knot off your yarn and weave in the loose ends.
Next, overlap the short ends of your crochet work a little bit and thread a long piece of yarn on your yarn needle. Sew a straight line of stitches up the short edges of your crochet work to sew them together.
Make one stitch over, then sew a second line of stitches back up. Cut your yarn, leaving two long tails.
Tie the yarn tails into a bow.
Voila! Your cozy is finished and ready to slip onto your canister.
Saturday, July 14, 2012
On my walks to the library I pass several yards on the same little street that always make me say "Wow, I want a yard like THAT!" The lawns are small on space but big on personality - they are full of flowers and interesting objects, and they look like a cross between a lush cottage garden and wild meadow.
Near the curb of one of the houses is this rusted iron piece from an old sewing machine. Next door the driveway has old tools and horseshoes set into the cement near the curb.
I really love these arbors hung with planters, too. This gardener has really lush flower beds and lets everything go just a little wild. Needless to say, this property is always buzzing with bees, birds, and butterflies!
Do you have garden? What's your style?
Friday, July 13, 2012
Happy Friday! I did a bunch of cleaning this morning so the apartment feels fresh and smells very nice : ) I will be embroidering diligently and finishing up orders this evening because I want to have time to work on a couple of crafty tutorials over the weekend. I'm excited to be going to Carmelo Cafe for a lunch date on Saturday, too!
Have a lovely , peaceful weekend!
Thursday, July 12, 2012
I am so excited to share this new tutorial with you - some of you might even be wondering what exactly a zine is! Well, a zine is a self-published book that is made on a photocopier and distributed by the person who made it (or sometimes a zine library like this one). Some zines are hand drawn, some are collaged, and some are like comic books. Zines are a really fun project because they are low-tech and can be made in a million different styles - I think they would be a great summer project for kids, too!
I have made three zines in the past (with more to come!) and each one was a great experience. I'm going to show you how I make my Busy Knitter zine because it is a cute 1/4 size (meaning that each page is 1/4 of a piece of paper).
First, you'll need a few sheets of white paper that are divided into fourths. Draw your designs in each section, keeping in mind that the final product will be double sided when printed. I usually draw everything single sided, then have the copy shop near my house convert it to double sided with their fancy copier (it's only 5 cents per copy, so it's worth it to save me the trouble!). It helps keep everything organized if you include page numbers.
And don't forget to include designs for your front and back cover : )
Once you've visited the copy shop and had your photocopies made, cut apart your pages and arrange them in order.
Fold your little booklet in half and make a crisp crease.
There are several easy ways to bind your pages (staples, hole punch & string, brass fasteners) but my favorite way is to sew a simple stitch with my sewing machine. Make sure to sew slowly so the paper doesn't tear.
And then your zine is finished! You can also check out suggestions for folding zines here and for binding them with pamphlet stitch here. I hope you have fun making zines!