Thursday, January 31, 2013


I always want to go thrifting when I hear of others who have had recent luck at it.  Yesterday I went to all three of my local thrift stores, and it was a pretty good day.

For metal pieces I got these:

I've got my shortbread in the tin on the right.  It's nice to have them out of a plastic container, and it's much prettier on my counter too.  The tray on the left reminded me of chintzware so I had to get it.  I thought the colours were a bit dull, but it turns out the tray was just really dirty!  It's called Daher Decorated Ware and it's from 1971.  Designed in the U.S: made in England.  I had a look on ebay for similar ones and there are some seriously beautiful patterns out there.  I will definitely be on the lookout for more.

It's a little hard to tell but this coffee container is actually pink and black!  I was seriously stoked to find it.  Even better was that it was something ridiculous like 79 cents.  Mr. Crafty World likes our current coffee container, so I put our Tassimo pods in there.  There was no way I was leaving that in the store.  It's American too: made by West Bend.  I think they used to make appliances?

For china I got two Wedgewood dishes.  I was only going to buy one but I found out it was was half price day for dishes.  Score!

The dish on the left is big enough to use as a sandwich or cake tray which is nice.  The bowl on the right was quite stained under the glaze, but I currently have it soaking in OxyClean and it's working to clean it up.

For the rest of it I got this big basket to hold the quilts and afghans in our family room.  I'm going to make a liner for it so the crocheted ones don't snag.  I got a few books and a new in package bath pillow and Dimensions cross stitch kit.  The kit was open but everything is there which is nice.

I could not resist the happy daisy and turquoise sheet.  It's going to make the cutest bunting I think.  Another project to add to the pile!

Thanks for visiting:)

Monday, January 28, 2013

Even Shallow Dreams Come True

I am a shopper; plain and simple.  Always have been; more than likely always will be.  One of my little dreams - and I admit quite a shallow one - has been to attend a gift show.  Just to look.  Just to see all that wholesale product laid out for buyers to be tempted with.

 Guess what I did yesterday?

Getting to peruse the Buyer's Guide is like icing on the cake.  No wait; the icing on the cake is helping to decide what to buy:  the cherry on top is not having to pay for any of it!  I just have to sell it.  Not hard when it's all so darn pretty.
I was supposed to go today too, but the school bus company decided they could not possibly drive their busses in the two inches of snow that came down.  So the kiddos and I are at home today, doing "snow day" type stuff.

Part of that will be starting a new crochet project:

A simple wrap using Noro Kogarashi variegated yarn.  I couldn't resist the sale price - $10 a ball!  The yarn colours are hot pink and turquoise and olive.  Sounds gross, but looks nice.  I'm not sure yet what colour the flower will be.
After some much needed house cleaning it will be pyjama time with crochet and season 3 of Downton Abbey:  that makes two awesome days in a row.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Quiet Crafts

I have used a few of my quiet moments to make a few things.  Nothing huge, and more like puttering in the craft room with something to show for it.

I dug out some of the large, flat backed marbles and scrapbooking papers to make some Victorian inspired magnets.  I figured our refrigerator could use some new accessories:

My favourite is this one with the little chateau:  it reminds me of France and how much I want to go again.

I sorted through some of my fabrics and played with a new rubber stamp to come up with a heart decoration:

I used some of my vintage lace and even managed to stick an old, cancelled stamp onto it.  It was a fun afternoon, but it took hours just to get this one thing done!

 Yesterday I cancelled all my commitments to have a "well" day at home.  Libby and I snuggled under the rainbow blanket and watched season one of 'Downton Abbey'.  I also worked a few more rows on my ripple blanket.  It was a great afternoon and I felt much better afterwards.

Wishing you some quiet well days,

Monday, January 21, 2013

Don't Make Plans

'Don't make plans' really should be a mantra for Mr. Crafty World and I.  Every time we do, they end up going bust.  Like this weekend: for the first time since November 1 I had the whole weekend off.  Saturday and Sunday.  That's rare around these parts.  We had plans to drive out to Port Perry and do some shopping and eat at a cute little bakery.  We have been looking forward to this for weeks. Thursday morning saw me taking My Favourite Boy to the clinic to get an official Strep Throat diagnosis.  OK, he won't be contagious by Saturday, so we can go if he feels up to it.  By Friday he was feeling much better, and all looked good.  Then after supper on Friday night My Favourite Girl started throwing up and didn't stop until 5:30 a.m.  I ended up sleeping on her floor and holding a bucket for her every half hour or so.  Fun.  Saturday was a write off, and Sunday I couldn't get out of bed myself.  Today I'm home again because My Favourite Girl called me from school to come home, so I had to close the shop and get her.  OY!

Despite all this, I did manage to complete a project on Saturday I have been wanting to do.  It was nice, boring, repetitive work - perfect for an exhausted mama.
Months ago I bought some magnetic spice racks and mounted them inside my pantry door.  They have been a blessing because now I can find my spices.  Problem is, the containers themselves are not marked.  I put a label behind the container, but when you are using more than one at a time it can get a little dicey when you're not sure if you put your chili powder where the cayenne pepper is supposed to go.  And yes, it does make a difference!  So I prettied them up with a little scrapbook paper and rubber stamps and now there is no more confusion.

See, I didn't plan to make these this weekend, it just happened due to a series of (unfortunate) events.  Lesson learned - hopefully.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

January 15, 2013 W.I.P's 'n Things

I used to have a great rule when I started cross stitching and that was to never start a new project until I finished what I was working on.  I actually followed that rule for a number of years and then for whatever reason I stopped.  It's amazing how much builds up on you when you're not paying attention!  Currently I am trying to finish up a work-in-progress about three years in the making; a Valentine band sampler in cross stitch.  The goal is to get it finished by this Valentine's day, but I'm not going to make any bold declarations or anything.  I'm getting closer to the end so it's quite possible:

My current crochet project is moving along slowly:

I am trying to be random with the colour placement, but I do have to watch out because some colours I only have one ball of and I don't want to run out half way through.

I have a new DIY project and it will remain a W.I.P until summer most likely:

I got it off the curb and it needs a new coat of paint.  I am sure what's on there right now is oil paint so it won't just be a matter of slapping on a new coat in situ.  It is going to be the new home for our TV and I would seriously love to paint a Union Jack over the drawers.  Very 2012 I know, but I still think it would be cool.  Mr. Crafty World will take some convincing though.

Remember when I said I was waiting for an order from Victorian Trading Company?  Well, it came this morning and it wasn't just new stationary I was waiting for:

Aren't they gorgeous?!!  I was a little nervous that they wouldn't fit, because tall rain boots can be funny that way.  However they fit perfectly and they're comfortable.  I can't wait for Spring!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

January 10, 2013: Vintage Baking

I got some great books for Christmas.  Rather, I ordered some great books for myself for Christmas.  Today the sun was shining and it felt like a great day to dig into one of them and bake.  Here's what I worked from:

It really is a lovely book.   I have a small collection of vintage cookbooks and I love reading the recipes for the old fashioned baked goodies.  There is hardly a chocolate chip or package of cream cheese mentioned in most of them; mostly just butter, sugar, flour and lots of dried fruit.  This book is basically a collection of the most popular of the oldies, but with lovely photographs.  After reading through it the first time I just had to make a round of the thrift stores to see if I could find any lovely vintage baking treasures.

So today I dusted off my Mix Master and made the Victoria Sandwich Cake, which is the cake you see on the front cover.  It's like a strawberry shortcake but with jam instead of strawberries in the filling.  I didn't want to use just any red jam though.  No, indeed, I wanted to use this:

It's rose petal jelly from Provence and it's gooo-ood!  It smells like roses; it tastes like roses; it even has rose petals in it.  I bought a jar before Christmas and loved it so much I bought another jar and wrapped it up and told Mr. Crafty he was to put it in my stocking.  I am a little stingy with it though.  Today  I thought it would bring an extra vintage touch to a vintage cake so I let up a little.  I like it , and it got three out of four thumbs up.  Only three because My Favourite Boy has not tried the cake yet.

My Favourite Girl and I did not even wait until the boys got home from school/work to try it; we just got out the forks and indulged.  I had it with a cup of Zhena's Gypsy Rose tea and I was in rose heaven. Next time - and there will be a next time - I will not sweeten the whipped cream because the jam is sweet enough.  The recipe did not call for sweetened whipped cream but I did it anyway.

I was hoping to get a little sewing done with some new vintage style fabric afterwards, but it didn't pan out.  However, the laundry room is cleaner than it has been in months and lots of washing and ironing got done, so I can't complain about the way the day went.  Perhaps tomorrow:)

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

January 9, 2013: The Good Stuff

In my crochet adventures I have never really strayed beyond the usual yarn you can buy at the craft or department store.  For my blankets I feel fine using the cheaper acrylic yarns because they will take a beating over the years.  Crafty projects are fine with inexpensive cottons and they give me a chance to experiment and I usually pull out more stitches than I put in.  For my wearables I have used the nicest of the cheaper yarns, but I am still not confident enough in my stitching to invest in some of the beautiful, real wools out there.  You know, the good stuff.

Yarns with Integrity.

Now that I work next to a  pretty little yarn shop I can see (and touch, and imagine) the most beautiful of fibres and it didn't take too long to break my resistance.  I bought the most beautiful hand dyed yarn in all my favourite shades of purple and green and blue.  I had great visions to make a lovely neck warmer, but it is not bulky enough. After ripping out those stitches I decided on a simple, v-stitch scarf; something that wouldn't take up too much yarn and would show off the variations in shades.  I ended up using almost two skeins of it, but I am happy with how it turned out - though I wish I did make it a tad longer.

Isn't it pretty?

It's lovely to wear too; not scratchy at all, which I did worry about a little.  It's quite plain: I didn't make any pretty edges for it but really, who's going to notice?

If we had a dog house this one would be in it.

I took her for a short walk to check the mail and while I wasn't looking she found a pile of poop on the ground and ate it.  Gross.  She had just had eaten some treats at home too: ingrate.  There were many dirty looks and admonitions of "bad girl!" on the way home.  She knew she was in trouble because she wouldn't look me in the face.  Perhaps I can convince Mr. Crafty World to brush her teeth when he gets home because I don't want her poopy little mouth breathing on me.  Bad girl.

Monday, January 7, 2013

January 7, 2013

Today is the first day for everyone to get back into their routine.  I have thoroughly enjoyed this 2 week vacation; it seemed to stretch on and on, but in a good way.  I had to work a few days, and Mr. Crafty World had to work a few days, but they never felt like normal working days, I guess because we knew at the end of our working days we would be coming back to our cozy, post-Christmas nest.  I think the only one who will be happy about getting back to normal is Libby.  Despite  having four people in the house almost all of the time she never did get as many walks as she does when it's just me.

Now when we go out she can sport the fancy new sweater she got for Christmas:

The dog benefited the most from my pre-Christmas making.  She got a flannel quilt for her downstairs dog bed; the sweater; and a fleece toy made with three squeakers.  She was very excited about the toy and it lasted about half an hour before the first hole was chewed through it.  I thought that using polar fleece would be practically indestructible since you can't tear it, but apparently not for terriers like Libby.

I stitched a few cross stitch pieces, but only finished one off into an ornament:

I got thoroughly spoiled at Christmas with treats and books and all kinds of great things.  I did a lot of sewing by had in the lazy days that followed as we lounged around in new pyjamas and re-watched season 1  and 2 of 'Lark Rise to Candleford'.  I made a quilted coffee sleeve for my pretty new travel mug and got most of this little hedgehog done.

I also started some new crochet projects: a scarf made with them most gorgeous yarn I have used yet, and a ripple blanket in blues, greens and greys.

With the new year comes all sorts of inspiration so I have to carry my notebook around with me and jot things down or else I'll never remember it all.  If only there was enough time to make it all!
I don't really make any resolutions, but this year I thought I would like to write more letters.  There's something about getting a letter from someone that tells you all of their news on paper; not snippets of their life on social networks or email.  Sure it's not instant, and by the time it makes its way to you it's old news, but it's such a pleasure to receive.  I have ordered some lovely writing paper from Victorian Trading Co. to get me started, so I'm anxiously awaiting its arrival - by post!

Work has, of course, slowed down since Christmas.  These days I will be using the quiet times to make Valentine decorations for the store.  Good thing too because I really hurt my back yesterday and sitting down is about all I'm good for.  It will get better if I just take it easy for a while, and then Mr. Crafty World and I can re-open the discussion of moving a whole bunch of heavy furniture around:)

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