Thursday, May 30, 2013

Thrifty Thursday

Hi All!
So Thrifty Thursday's, those are still a thing in blogland, right? I've seen, but never participated... until today, because I just have to share this find! Last weekend, my husband and I went up to Fallon, NV to visit family and while we were there his Aunt Bev and I did a little shopping. I scored some great embroidered pieces that I thought I'd share (and something really special that I can't show yet, because it wouldn't fit in my car to bring it home!). Let's get started.

My first find was this lovely, lovely hand embroidered pillow cover. The colors are so vivid, this sham practically jumped into my hands.

The price couldn't be beat, $6.99!! Can you believe that?

The stitches are so perfect, it looks machine made, and maybe I'm wrong, but all the little knots and tails on the back look hand made to me.

It's just gorgeous!

I love it, I feel lucky to have snapped it up.

The second item was a mystery at first, I wasn't sure what it was, but I knew it was pretty, crewel work. It was sort of crumbled in a ball when I found it, and turns out it's a wall hanging. Or... at least that's what I did with it.

I folded the top edge back and stitched a little pocket to put a piece of doweling through, then made a quick, braided hanger for it.

I think this was a kit, in this picture you can see where the lines of the printed linen can be seen where the stitches don't quite cover.

Whoever started this piece finished all the stitching, and did a nice job, wool isn't the easiest thing to embroider with (in my limited experience), but it looks like they never did anything with the finished piece, what a shame.

I fixed that too, it's now hanging just inside my bedroom door!

This piece cost a whopping $3.00. Yeehaw! I love a good deal. Especially considering the work that went into these, which I often wonder about when I come across these pretty treasures. Who stitched this? How'd it end up in a thrift shop? It makes me wonder about my own embroidered things, will they end up in a thrift shop someday? I hope not...

So this was fun! I've rarely ever posted anything I didn't make with my own hands, and this was a breath of fresh air. I collect all kinds of bits and bobs, much like a magpie, but I've never shown any of them here, not really, so maybe if you guys like this kind of thing, I'll show more of my favorite finds from time to time. 

Do you like thrift and antique shopping? What kinds of things do you collect? What's the best thing you've ever found? Do tell!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Oh, The Things I've Stitched

Hi Guys,
So here's a look back at the things I stitched for the tea towel swap over the last year that we just finished, I've blogged some of these things, but not all. It's really neat to see these images together, and funny too, such an eclectic mix. I love these people, I was happy to stitch these things for them.

Dancing Fox
For Jill

Vegas Show Girl
For Erin

Jack B. Nimble
For Jack

Circular Mandala

Corn Dog
For Bascom

Lil Pink Machine
For Becky

Sweet Gnome
For Becky

Tattoo Flash
For Jo

Shroomy Gnome
for Crystal

For Pam

Dear Deer
For Tara

Good times, good people!

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Oh Deer!

**Eeeep! UPDATE! Eeeep!**
This embroidery has been featured on Feeling Stitchy, wahooo!
You can see the post here.

Hi All,
Who's ready for a long weekend, this girl!

Speaking of long, this, this pretty deer is the last embroidery that I completed for the tea towel swap that I participated in with some of my stitchy friends (I wrote about my completed towel here). This swap, which we thought would take about three months ended up taking just over a year. Life happens...

This last embroidery is for my pal, Tara. I knew for a long time what I wanted to stitch on her towel, but when it arrived in the mail, the pattern that I'd planned to embroider didn't fit in a symmetrically pleasing sort of way, so it was back to the drawing board. Luckily, deer & stags are pretty and there are lots of images to choose from. I picked one, then made it my own. Have a look?

(feel free to click the images for bigger pictures with a lot more stitch detail)

She/he (I still don't know, can female deer have antlers?) has such a pretty face. The eyes are what drew me to this particular animal. I think this was the first time I've done fill stitch as fur. After worrying some that I was getting it wrong, I got into the grove and enjoyed it, layering the subtle blend of browns, grays and creams and imagining the direction the fur would lay in.

 I stitched a few flowers and leaves to grace that regal neck. Bold colors, bright, but not too girly, for my Montana friend.

Here's Tara's whole towel completed, and ready to go home, get a load of all that great embroidery!

With each embroidery I do, I'm always trying to improve my skill in some small way, lately, that's been working at keeping the backs neat, not carrying threads, taking care with my knots, generally keeping things tidy. On this particular piece, I thought the back was kind of interesting so I snapped a photo. Here you can see both the front and backs of the piece.

He/she's a pretty thing, I'm glad to have stitched him/her!

In my next post, I'm planning to put all of the embroideries that I did for this swap together in one post so you can see them all at once. It'll be the first time I see them all at once, too. I'm interested to see the whole lot of them together.

Wishing you all a happy weekend!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Happy Hexies

Hi Everyone!
Raise your hand if you've been following along with all of Mollie Johnson's adorable hexagon projects on her blog Wild Olive. Wow, look at the hands go up! Well, I too have been pulled in by her six-sided cuties.

One night last week I had to make some hexies. Had to. I needed that quick fix, you know the one when you are compelled to put aside anything else you're already working on (sorry Tara, it's almost done, I swear!) and start something new? Yeah... guilty.

I printed out Mollie's helpful hexie download, picked a couple of pretty scraps out of my scrap basket, you really don't need much fabric, just a couple of square inches, and this super pink little towel (which was part of my swag box from winning a Craftster challenge a couple of months ago, thanks Pam!) and set to work.

The hexies come together very quickly, I made all three and stitched them to the towel in less than an hour while Sean and I were watching TV. Easy peasy, you should give it a go! Embellishing a towel or two like this is a simple, pretty gift you could whip up for a friend, or shoot, for yourself! 

I think I see more hexies in my future, but not until I finish what I'm already working on, which I'm hoping to show you in a day or two, it's so pretty, I can't wait to see it finished. A special embroidery for a special lady in the wilds of Montana. 

Ok, get your scissors out, girls, make some hexies!

p.s. Is it strawberry season in your neck of the woods yet? They're bursting here, I can't get enough of them, so much so that I'm probably going to sprout strawberry vines out my ears any day.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Happy Mother's Day!

Wishing all you mom's out there, a very, happy, restful & relaxing Mother's Day!

I stitched up this little card for my own mommy, fun stuff! I saw this pin and followed the link to the source because it was so pretty (happily, I also found a link to the creator, Jessica at Miniature Rhino, you can find her wonderful blog post about the card here). I've never tried stitching on paper before, but it was easy peasy, just draw your design, poke some holes and stitch away! I hope she likes it ♥

I myself will be up in the mountains with my own mother this weekend, we're kicking off the summer season a little bit early this year with a Mother's Day camping trip. Should be fun!

Have a great day, my dearies!

Friday, May 10, 2013

Fabric Covered Binders

Hi Guys!
Today I wanted to show you something I did last weekend, a very quick, simple little project which came out great, and that you might like to try yourself. I saw this idea on Pinterest and thought it was a good one; easy, useful, cheap (and by cheap, I mean free!) and pretty. What more could you want in a Pin? 

I followed this pin to the source, gathered my materials (I already had everything I needed), and jumped in. I used some old binders from work, ugly, and still in good shape, but headed for the trash. I nabbed them just in time! As you can see, it doesn't matter what kind of binders you start with, they'll be totally covered when you're done.
The directions are very easy to follow, and in just a few minutes, I was done! I covered two of these binders in a half hour, which included finding fabric in my stash, pulling everything together, ironing the fabric flat, cutting & assembly.


I am going to use these binders to stash my embroidery & sewing patterns and stencils. I picked up a packet of clear, heavy weight page protectors to store small pieces of patterns and templates and help keep everything organized.

This is my current and very dysfunctional pattern storage situation, it's a mess! One binder with everything squashed in willynilly. This is no good, patterns and pages are constantly slipping out and falling everywhere. Yuck.

(Yes, I do have a Barbie on a Vespa. Whut?)
Now everything has a home and sits together nice & pretty, until I pull it out and make a mess, that is! Haha, that's kind of the name of the crafting & making game though, isn't it? As my husband often says "Where Lisa goes, mess follows." He's not entirely wrong, but I keep trying.

I hope you'll give these a shot if you're into organization, you could use them for all kinds of things, like recipes  checklists, storing bills, idea books, anything really. They couldn't be easier and the options are unlimited as far as fabric goes. Let me know if you do, I'd love to see!


Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Georgia On My Mind

Hey Y'all!
Sorry it's taken me so long to get this post up, there's something about editing a ton of family photos, then picking through them to see what goes here on the blog, what goes on Flickr or Facebook, who gets tagged, etc. that I find daunting, so I freely admit... I've been dragging my feet. We're all guilty, right? 

So! We went to Georgia last week  a couple of weeks ago, it was a quick trip to visit family and get a peek at the deep south. We visited Augusta (where our family lives and where my niece is stationed at Ft. Gordon), and Savannah. Since we were only going to be there for 3 days, and mainly to see family, I knew we'd barely get to skim the surface, but as per our usual style, we crammed it in. 

It was so good to see my nieces again! Alex has been serving in the US Army for the last three years, and almost 2 years ago, Ana moved to Georgia to be near her. I love & miss these two. Our first day in Augusta, Ana played tour guide and we visited the downtown area, along the river (she tells me those houses back there are in South Carolina, not Georgia) an old cemetery (love those!) and cruised around some of the older, beautiful neighborhoods of Augusta. It's hard to get good photos from the backseat of a moving vehicle though, so instead I just soaked it in.

I really liked the look of this little old house and tried to get a good shot, but again... moving vehicle. Bah. 

Now, that's what I call four wheel drive! Living in the breadbasket of California, I'm pretty used to seeing all sorts of large farm equipment, but generally, not on the highway. Something that struck me about Georgia, was how green & lush everything is, and from what I understand - year-round  It's so pretty, there are so many trees, so much open space. Very unlike California. Not that there's not a lot of open space in CA, there's tons, but unless it's landscaped, or irrigated, the wide open spaces of my beloved home state aren't green, or if they are, it only lasts from March to mid-May when things heat up and everything turns brown. 

Savannah! We only had one afternoon, so we did the best we could and walked everywhere downtown and along the River Walk.

A cookie bigger than his head. Yes, my husband was in heaven.

Alex was in heaven too, this kid loves candy! We found some great stuff at Savannah Candy Kitchen

Alex & Ana goofing with my camera.

My first glimpse of Spanish moss,

What an eerie and beautiful plant. 

Commemorating the 250 year anniversary of the founding of the colony of Georgia and those Georgians of Irish ancestry for their contributions. It was not lost on me that Jaime & Claire made their first landfall in the United States in Georgia at the end of Voyager, I kept daydreaming about them as we passed along some of the older parts of the city. Such a nerd.

The gaslights along this stretch of buildings was very pretty.

Sean and I... and a rouge photobomber.

I love this kid. 

Another stumble upon that we encountered was The Lady & Sons, Paula Deen's restaurant! We weren't hungry for a full meal, and we didn't have reservations anyway, but I thought maybe we could grab a bit of desert, and seeing as how we were in the peach state, I wanted something like that. I got a piece of peach cobbler, and Ana got a bit of the Gooey Butter Cake to go. I had high hopes, I mean, Paula Deen! Unforch... is wasn't very good. Bummer. 

But girls, I ate alligator!! And ya know... it wasn't half bad, but I don't care what anyone says, it does not taste like chicken.

The River Walk in the evening was lovely, and this guy, wow, he could sing!

We took a ghost tour! Most of my pictures are rubbish, but I managed a few, like this one of our (hunky) tour guide, Don.

And this one of Sean getting the jeebers! All the lights on the EMF detector lit up. Hehehe... It's silly.

Speaking of silly fun, the last place we visited in Savannah was the Moon River Brewery. What's so special about that? Well, lemme tell ya... Ghost Adventurers! We love that show, those guys can be so corny and scare the pants off of themselves, they filmed an episode at this location. Although... sometimes I admit, that show gives me the creeps, but it's all in good fun.

All in all, it was a fast blast, we wished we could have stayed for longer, but we had to get back home to our little critter family. The only things I didn't get to do that I had hoped to was have tea somewhere poshy and visit a historical plantation. Ah well, next time! 

Hope you enjoyed a few little vacation pictures! Now back to crafts n' tea & stuff!