Like a lot of people who sew, I have a lovely collection of garments that just don’t work. Sometimes, as in the case of one full-length, forest green peasant dress that I unearthed a few weeks ago, they are the result of a baby seamstress first figuring out technique and design, and not thinking about – let’s say, long-term wearability.
This dress was made for a 4-H sewing competition as part of a cosplay Time Lord outfit. Before cosplay was cool.
It struck me that peasant-style tunic-dresses are in, so I made a plan to repurpose the long, mostly useless dress into something fun and functional for (mostly) everyday wearing.
Perhaps I will edit this post to include a photo of me modelling this – with the waist cincher!
I love repurposing one garment into something totally different! A red plaid Highlander skirt has become one of my favorite dresses; and my pretty, princess-y Easter dress this year used to be a hideous ’90’s affair of pleats and sailor collars. But I forgot to document the process!
I hope you are inspired to try some repurposing this week 😀
I would have published this on Thursday, like it should be… but WordPress was being weird. So – better late then never, right?
A few days ago, in the morning I went walking in the woods. I went with most of my family and my good friend and her mother. We went to see the last of the autumn leaves, but besides seeing some lovely fall colors, we got another little delight – cattail fluff!
And that is what I want to feature for my Thankfulness Thursday! (Or Monday… doesn’t quite sound as good though!)
The picture below shows how we found these simple little delights, on the stock and ready to play with. Little did we realize how fun they were going to be!
I’m sure, if you’ve ever played with these funny little things, you know how much fun you can have. Pinch one end a little and what looks like half an inch of compact tan colored semi-solidness then suddenly and softly explodes in your hand and becomes a practically weightless white cloud of fuzz!
Personally, it was rather nice to get away from the political weirdness of the world and the other stresses of life, and I was very thankful to be able to enjoy one of the simple pleasures of life, that of my senses – and my imagination – being tickled by the joys of fluffy cattail clouds.
Sometimes you don’t need that much to be entertained.
My good friend, Addie, who had a lot of fun playing with the silly whiteness!
We all got covered in the fluffiness – it got everywhere!
They got on Abigail’s new red cape! (Abigail, you need to show the whole outfit later to all of our readers! I can’t wait to see it all together!)
Also – I can’t help putting more than one thing for my Thankfulness Thursday post – I’m so thankful for my friend! Addie is very dear to my heart, and almost as close to me as my wonderful sisters! All of my sisters – both blood and sister in the Lord – I am very thankful for!
The wonderful, fun, sweet, lovable, patient and dependable Sarah!
Abby, the delightful and kind, the generous and wise, the thoughtful and caring! Both such an amazing abundant blessing to me! I love you too!
So there you go! Take a walk in the woods with family and friends and enjoy the simple things of life! There’s so much to be thankful for in just these things alone!
Sometimes, quite irrationally, things become irksome. Like blogging, for instance. One loses focus, gets stuck in a rut, forgets a time or two and then feels so guilty about it that one forgets again, other things get busy. And so on. You know how it is!
So, yeah, I think we’ve kind of fallen into one of those times here in “Ribbons”-world. So sad – because we’re actually really excited about what we’re doing and what we want to share!
As we figure it all out and prepare for what I hope will be a grand re-entrance into the blogging realm, here is a gallery of our most recent excursion into our local mountains!
A very pleasant Labor Day hike! It’s always good to step away for a bit, when things get too irksome, and do a little relaxing.
First of all, let it be known, that I love ornaments! Our tree would probably be buried if I was allowed to put on all the ornaments I wanted. Among the best kinds of ornaments are pretty classic shaped ornaments with pretty pictures, Christmas Carol ornaments, icicles, a few Santas, and, of course, small animals.
The Raisin Fairy owner, Abigail, has a few wonderful little clay animals in nutshells. I always thought the choice of clay for the animals was interesting, giving these creations an accessible, charming, simple appeal. But I especially appreciate these little animals because I’ve dabbled (not quite the right word) in clay- with blobby, flaked results, and so its wonderful to see that someone can make such beautiful, delicate things out of clay.
Besides the wonderful ornaments, you can find some Gift Pockets, which would make wonderful stocking stuffers. They seem to be very popular, which is understandable. How can you go wrong with Starbucks, a candy cane and the season’s greetings?
The Raisin Fairy shop has an eclectic collection of fun things, besides what I’ve mentioned, including a cowl, hand warmers and sachets. These items I’ve mentioned are crocheted with the same beautiful skill I’ve seen Hannah use with her hats (you’d almost think they were related! *gasp*)
OK, time for me to take a personal look at the shop and it’s owner, since I have the advantage of knowing her!
Pictured on the right is the cowl I mentioned, with matching fingerless gloves (sold separately). Abigail probably had enough yarn to make the cowl, as well as the fingerless gloves, so I think this is probably the only cowl. But they are not the only fingerless gloves! Abigail is making several other fingerless gloves, which will be coming up on her shop very soon. And her sachets, also coming soon, are absolutely wonderful, usually scented with lavender and chamomile.
And I have saved the best for last- well, more like the latest for last, since her whole shop is best! Abigail has been working on Ephemeral Earrings. She has a good collection, so they will be appearing on Etsy very soon. I’ll just tease your curiosity, though, and leave Abigail to show off her new creations. But they are beautiful, and several are Christmas-y, so keep an eye on her shop to see when they make their appearance!
I invite you to see what Abigail has on her shop right now- The Raisin Fairy! It is well worth the look.
Have a great weekend everyone, and Merry Christmas!
Amid all the craziness of being new bloggers, putting new stuff out there, and hoping people will find it, it suddenly seems as though we have (sorta) lost sight of what this blog is really about: Our Etsy shops – what’s there, and what to look forward to.
Of course, we haven’t really forgotten about it. Etsy and our shops and where we’re going with our creative careers is never far from our minds, hearts and imaginations! But we do need to start highlighting our shops a little more. (This is a little embarrassing, since I’ve been neglecting my shop far too much lately!) We’ve been talking about making a couple of changes to our blog so that it ties in with Etsy a bit more, but until then here’s an introduction to each of our shops (in alphabetical order!):
Hannah’s shop features beautiful crocheted hats. She designs her own original patterns (which she says is easier than following someone else’s) and works primarily in cotton thread. Each creation is unique, and wonderfully wearable! She also has a line of Victorian-style handcrafted cards (paper and downloadable versions) which she is expanding all the time with new original designs. Keep an eye out for Christmas cards, sets and individual!
My shop is about small things to charm and light your life, and add a little bit of comfort and magic to even the most mundane days. At the moment, you will see several cards (downloadable and hard copies), and adorable little woodland ornaments. But my shelves are going to fill up soon with crocheted fingerless gloves, colorful and bright sachets, more cards, and some fanciful earrings that I am in the fun process of designing.
Sarah’s shop is all about bags. Her designs are clever, creative, and lovely. From handbags to totes, each creation is unique – I don’t think she’s used the same design twice yet. She uses fabrics from our Stash, which encourages outside-the-box thinking, with occasional additions specially purchased to make the bag come to life. She’s planning some Christmas bags, which will probably show up soon. But her bags are all-the-time useable. Gorgeous and chic!
So come and check our shops out! We are always reinventing, renovating, and experimenting with new ideas – and it would be wonderful to have you along for the journey.
This is number 3 on our ongoing list of 25 new blogger post ideas, which Hannah talked about here. Perhaps I’ll put in the whole list at the bottom! Technically, I’m not even sure if this qualifies as a really new blog anymore, since we’ve been going 4 months now. 4 whole months! I can’t believe it’s been that long – or that I’ve actually managed to post as often as I have; probably collaborating has kept me accountable!
Hannah and Sarah have been having so much fun with their “10 Things No One Knows About Me” posts that I think I will have to do one too. However, it’s not as easy as you’d think to come up with 10 interesting facts about yourself. And if it’s to things that no one knows – well, let’s just say I’m not sure I want to go there! So – I’m trying to come up with 10 things about me not likely to be involved in this blog, just to round out my persona. Maybe I’ll put something like that up later this week.
Meanwhile – why did I start blogging?
We already covered (more or less) why we started this blog in our first post – it’s a chronicle of how we are launching our Etsy shops – and our lives. We want to share what we’re up to, connect to people, and build (we hope) an audience for what we’re doing.
Personally, however, I got into blogging a little more than a year ago with my individual blog Abything and Everything (which is sadly neglected – I really need to take the time to give it some TLC!). It was, and is, uncomfortable for me. I hardly ever read other people’s blogs, and I tend to get befuddled with my own.
So why do it?
Well, let’s be terribly honest: I know that every good author platform starts with a blog nowadays – and I want to be a published author. It’s a great way to connect with readers, hone writing skills, and network with others in the same craft. You can’t get anywhere without a blogging platform to talk about your writing and get people excited! I’m sure Charles Dickens had an active, popular blog filled with colorful caricatures and too-vivid scene setting! Agatha Christie must’ve hosted daily, wild chats on the subjects of poisons and bridge-playing! William Shakespeare probably churned out puns in iambic pentameter faster than his “Globe-Blog” fans could cap them with a witty response! Emily Dickinson… Well, she probably cut off all Wi-Fi signals, and only occasionally Tweeted: there are limits.
Anyway, a funny thing has happened now that I’m blogging more consistently: I’m actually starting to enjoy it. Just so long as I keep it short (unlike now) and try to get in at least one post a week, it can be fun. I’ve found a couple of bloggers I like to follow, and apparently I like photography blogs – so it’s not all bad! And now some random people are liking my posts – thanks! – and it’s fun sharing my own photography, like these pictures of a recent mountain adventure.
I have lots of ideas for the future.
This should keep us occupied for a while, though: The List, as promised! –
25 Blog Post Ideas For New Bloggers
An introductory/”About Me” post
10 things no one knows about you
Why did you start a blog?
A roundup of “daily life”-type photos
Where do you see yourself (and your blog) this time next year?
Share some guilty pleasures
What are your favorite blogs to check out every day?
Share an embarrassing or silly story
Let us see what’s in your bag
Share some of your favorites – movies, music, tv, books, etc.
What’s been inspiring you lately?
Talk about a hobby or something you’re passionate about
What are some goals you’d like to achieve this season?
Share your bucket list
What’s a day in your life like?
Create a weekly feature or series
Interview another blogger or friend
Create a “Top 10” or “5 Tips” post
Feature someone who inspires you every day
Review something specific to your niche
Share your to-do list for the day/week/weekend
Swap guest posts with another blogger
Share the pros and cons of something you have experience with
Create a list of blogs you think are worth following
Write a letter to your future self that you can come back and read on your blog’s 1 year anniversary
I love, love, LOVE Doctor Who! I have, ever since 1997 when I watched my first episode (practically completely behind the sofa!) and that episode was Genesis of the Daleks, with Tom Baker, the best Doctor ever.
I played the flute for around seven years until I finished high school, and even a little after that.
I love to make (and eat!) pot de crème. I’ll post the recipe (which I got from a great friend of mine) soon hopefully. I promise you, it is melt-in-your-mouth chocolate heaven!
I have something called hypermobility, or more commonly known as double jointed.
I love to write in November for this crazy thing called NaNoWriMo.
I love black tea in the afternoon.
And coffee in the morning!
I love period clothing, such as the Civil War, Regency or even Retro clothing.
In two days it will be a week since our boutique. Right about now, last week, we were going crazy getting everything pulled together. Now, looking back on it, I know it was worth it. And now, I will finally get to doing a blog post about the event, with lots of pictures included!
We got the essentials into our car- ourselves, food, Etsy items, a table and a shelf plus various things including badminton equipment- and headed over to the park about half an hour late. Basically we were ready for the day, but several trips were necessary to get everything in order.
We got everything set up pretty quickly, and a tent was kindly provided by a friend who joined us for science in the park. We had lots of fun with water balloons, and exploding them with lemon juice, but unfortunately I didn’t think of taking pictures.
About nine o’clock we were completely ready, blueberry muffins, peanut butter honey milk balls and mini quiches ready, not to mention our Etsy items hung up and looking nice.
There was last minute preparations, as Abigail finished some of her beautiful calligraphy letters that look like fairy tales and, sadly, I forgot to get pictures of while I was there, and final prices were decided on.
Before it got hotter, or the pleasant shade of a tree got too far from our spot, Hannah and I played some badminton, which is our favorite sport besides all the things we want to try. We did not play as long as I would have liked, because soon after we got started, we were rejoined by our mum, and setting up continued for another shelf and a table.
We got a lot of people passing by who glanced our way, and maybe even thought about seeing what was under the tent, but they usually had dogs or else were in cars, so they couldn’t stop.
Pretty soon friends started coming by to see us. The food was uncovered- sense it was generally covered to be protected from the flies- and I felt that the boutique had officially started.
We had everything there (well, actually some items were not easily accessible) from small to large, Christmas to Summer. There was a small Christmas section, where I included some Christmas gift bags- which I think have made an appearance in some recent pictures, but which I’m waiting to put on Etsy. Abigail made a couple of these wonderful ornaments for our Christmas tree- I personally love to decorate Christmas trees in the grand, memory-borne and unique, and these are some of the best for bringing some of the wild from whence the tree came into the home.
As the days passed, we had other visitors, never in full mass, but coming in a trickle to enjoy seeing our things and getting some refreshing coffee. It was wonderful seeing them there- some of them friends who I have not seen recently.
These cards were made with great care, thoughtfulness and enjoyment. I believe they are available on Etsy.
Among these cards were several other cards, made both by Abigail and Hannah. I took a picture of several of them at once, but there was so much prettiness it was hard to take it all in.
About the time our last visitors came, it was quite warm and I was getting my third glass of mint green tea. I had already eaten most of the peanut butter honey milk balls.
We made several sales there, I sold three of my garden pockets- but it was just a pleasure to be able to talk with our friends.
For the last twenty minutes or so- before taking things down- we pulled up some chairs and talked in the warmth of the day and the shade of the tent. It was really the killer flies that drove us away (to Cold Stone ice cream)
Business is a lot of things. Obviously a part of it is selling your items, but some of it is just making sure there is a business. And what makes up a business is having things to fill it out, having a way to give it to people, having a reason to give it to people and, in the meantime, having something to help pay for those cold stone trips. And basically that’s exactly what I found the boutique to be. I got to hang out with friends and family, to show them what we have in our Etsy shops, and I pray my things bless people. God has bless us so far.
Here are links to our Etsy shops, if you want to see everything that was there on Friday
The date of our boutique rapidly approaches, and fingers fly crafting careful and artistic objects to satisfy the discerning tastes of an insatiable public! In between trying not to panic over the shortness of time, freaking out over not having enough done, and actually making stuff, we will be posting a lot about our process: What we are making, plans, set up, ideas, implementation, finished works of art, and pictures of everything!
And, after all, even artists need to rejuvenate their creativity by a walk through the woods, or encounters with random woodland creatures!