Tuesday, November 30, 2010

(Birthday) Tea on Tuesday

Happy Birthday to-- me!
Sunday was my birthday.
It was almost a non-event.
No party.
No cake.
But our oldest daughter, Victoria, brought me a tray of tea in bed,
and thoughtfully brought out the birthday cup and saucer.
Son, Seth, made blueberry muffins from a boxed mix.
They turned out good.
I was relieved.
(He is 11 years old.)
Thank goodness for on-line soul mates who make it their mission to remember birthdays!

Patty's box was chock full of frothy, tissue paper wrapped bundles, each carefully tied up with velvet, hand dyed silk or lace. What I have pictured is just the tip top of the iceberg which is Patty's generosity. The bee's wax ornament smells beyond heavenly-- I could almost eat it! Her matchbox, with tucked in bird's nest, is exquisite! The marching bees are a dish towel. Like I can use it! It's too nice! She also sent Virginia peanuts, a precious bundle of laces, glycerine soap tenderly wrapped with a ribbon topped with the most precious button, and lots of yellowed papers and ephemera.
I will be "eating" eye candy for days!

Linda sent a banner.

I couldn't be more moved than if she had hired a plane to fly that message over my house.

I really needed it, the day her envelope arrived.

I was not feeling very loved.
To give you an idea of scale, those are ATCs I have displayed below her bit of hand made love.

A winged fork screeched in a for a landing just yesterday.
Thank you, Margaret!
I love it!
Her hammered, winged spoons have sold out in the florist's shop she works in.
She would be dangerous with an etsy shop!
I feel so privileged to have a piece of her flying cutlery collection!
Girlfriends are The Best!

Friday, November 26, 2010

Christmas Past

I never thought I would see the day when I would get nostalgic at the sight of felt, metallic trim and sequins!
My local thrift store has a steady stream of it this year, and it's all beautifully done.
Lots of hand sewing that has survived a lot of Christmases.

My kids still use an advent calender I remember using as a kid. A felt tree with 24 felt and sequined ornaments. My mom had bought it at a church Christmas bizaar.
I won't part with the advent calendar, but all of these sequined treasures and trims are for sale in my etsy shop.

Don't forget the icicles for your tree!
You just can't buy this stuff at Target, Walmart or Lowe's.
It used to be sold at your local five and dime.
Deck the halls!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

T Tuesday

I collect widowed cup and saucer pieces from garage sales and thrift stores.
I can't help myself.
I can always find room for them in my cabinets.
I hide them so my husband doesn't see yet another acquisition.
A stack of saucers, sans cups, can be found for less than a dollar.
I find widowed cups for 10 cents and 25 cents each.
Yes, really!
Many have fine pedigrees such as Haviland, Limoges or simply "Bone China, Made in England".
I don't limit myself to fine china either.
American made, vintage, ceramic pieces are just as pretty with roses and gold edging.

I especially love it when I find three matching cups. It's an instant party!
These ceramic ladies are paired with plain, Bavarian china, saucers.
Maybe I need to start a site.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Flying Keys

I was so inspired by Margaret's winged hammered spoons, that I thought I would try giving flight to some keys.

I made up four of these to sell at two different Christmas "boutiques". One is the Bhukwini Boutique at Shoal Creek Community Church. The proceeds help a group of women in Africa to have cottage industries to support their families. My mom said, "you know it's easier sometimes just to give a cash donation." I replied, "Yeah, but I don't have cash. I have lots of raw materials". :)

Friday, November 12, 2010

Asian Influences

The other day I got out my Asian stash of papers, images, and rubber stamps, plus a few not so Asian things, to fullfill my end of a one-on-one swap with Margaret.
She sent me her ATCs and inchie books in no time.
Me, it's now been two months and I am just now getting around to creating something for her!
And I never did post her lovelies I received
(her envelope is here somewhere!)
It's a wonder Margaret doesn't remove me from her blog roll.
A peek at the ATCs I made her.
The reverse sides are decorated too, but I didn't get pictures before mailing.
Maybe she will show the reverse?
My envelope should be arriving in Switzerland any day now.

Art Chix geisha, rubber stamps and the metal fan is one of a pair of earrings I found at the thrift store for 10 cents!
Other pages have fortune cookie wrappers, parts of Asian business cards, and such.

Margaret sent me two tiny inchie books.
With all of the images and rubber stamps I have, an inch was much too small a canvas, so I opted for a dog tag book (thank you Virginia for sharing your cast offs!)
Now I want to make one for myself!

Maybe after Christmas!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

I've Got the J O Y...

And I've bottled it! I'm taking part in a
crafts fair next weekend, so when do I start creating? This past week of course! I made two sets of bottles, similar in design. I filled each bottle with pretties-- lace, old trims, old pearls, a sprinkle each of a faux mica flakes and chunky gold glitter. This is a great way to use tulle and not-so-aesthetically-pleasing polyester lace, both of which I seem to have a lot of (garage sale and thrift store finds!)

Labels are made of old hymnal pages, cut with zig-zag scissors and antiqued with gold on the edges. I hand painted the lettering with acrylic paints.
I had to re-do the letter J twice, because I didn't like my first attempts.
I attached the labels with watered down white glue.
The necks of the bottles got collars made from some old vintage metallic trim, while the center bottle got a scarf made from a tarnished sequin trim.
One of the times I am glad I keep stuff for years.
You just never know when you can use something!

Don't have corks? Roll up old paper to the size you need (like rolling long paper beads).
Yesterday I found corks at Lowe's, 2 for 70 cents (a tiny drawer among the nuts and bolts). I think I prefer hand made stoppers for this project. The bottle brush tree is simply hot glued on. The other two bottles I left uncorked, because I wanted to the tree to be the fanciest bottle topper.
Might make a couple more bottles filled with "Christmas Cheer" or "Winter's Bliss".
Labels can be antique postcards or vintage Christmas cards.
Toppers can be old ornaments.
A good reason to go rummaging through my stuff!
If you need a reason, you may borrow mine. :)

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

No Accounting for Taste

This afternoon I am sipping Earl Grey as I list more lace for sale in my etsy shop,
when I am stopped by a piece I have handled, fondled, tried on, taken off and now am considering again.

It is a tattered and stained bit of nothing that for some unexplained reason I am fascinated by.

Perhaps because I think it gives me a rakish, swashbuckling, bohemian appearance. The look that says, "I can carelessly create fashion from a tattered bit of lace because paying retail for accessories is for the unimaginative."

Then I get embarrassed that I am trying to be something I am not.
I am not a trend setter by any stretch of the imagination.
But around the back roads of Missouri, I just might be.