Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Doing the Numbers

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas... in my house.
Last weekend we went to Sonoma and cut down a tree on top of Moon Mountain, did a little wine tasting at Imagery and lunched just off the square at Hopmonk Tavern. I recommend all three.  To me, it is quite simply, the most wonderful time of the year.  Yeah I'm that girl. 

I have a stack of projects I'm working on right now. First off the Advent Calendar.  I found one at Terrain that I really loved, but at $68 (and needing two) I decided to DIY and make them a little more subtle. Using mill cloth sacks, striped baker's twine and a number stamp set from Paper Source. I stamped the sacks (put a piece of paper inside to prevent the ink from bleeding), and stuffed them with small toys and candy.  I told the kids that elves came today while we were out and left little presents to open each day in December. Yippee!

Thursday, November 17, 2011


I am guilty of coveting things and then finally going to buy them only to find they are long gone.  It's the pits.  I still think about the Daisy Face wall tapestry from the limited release Alexander Girard collection at Urban Outfitters that was just no longer there.  The latest design dither tragedy to befall me was the Button Up pillow at CB2.  It's so simple and cute, and so unavailable*.  I couldn't get it out of my head, so decided to make a version of it myself. 

It was easy enough to find the pale gray wool felt.  What I couldn't find was a felt button for the center.  I made my own by taking a simple flat back stitch button and covering it with a mustard yellow felt using a glue gun.

I cut 18" squares and and because I wanted to do an exposed seam, I just pinned it and with a 1/4" allowance, and quickly zipped 3 sides, stuffed the pillow with fill, and sewed the 4th side closed. 

I measured the center, marked it with a fabric pen on both sides and using yellow embroidery thread stitched through 3 times attaching the button on one side.  I pulled through fairly tightly to create the tufting.  The project took about 1 1/2 hours to make 2 pillows.  

* Still not available online or in my local CB2 but somehow available in the catalog I received today. Hmmm...

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Growing Up

I've been keeping track of my kids height with pencil on the kitchen wall.  They keep growing  (lots of oatmeal) and my wall keeps getting more pencil on it. I've been wanting to create some sort of frame for the space that we hang all of their art.  

Jasper's on a nature kick, lots of forest animals and trees so I thought I'd take that idea and integrate it with my need for a proper growth chart using pieces of balsa wood. It does a dual job of measuring the kids and dividing the space. I'll add a new height every 6 months. I put mom and dad on there so that they 
can set some goals. 

Because balsa wood is so thin and light weight, I was able to tack the trunk to the wall, made up of three 3" wide pieces.  I used smaller 1" wide pre-cut pieces for the branches (left over from the sunburst mirror project).  

The leaves were created by tracing an oval onto the backside of the leftover larger balsa pieces.  I scored the outline and used a pair of sharp scissors to cut out the shape.  I marked the name, height and date on the leaf.  Both the branch and the leaf are attached with foam tape.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Garden State

When we moved to our house in deer country, complete with a eucalyptus grove and rocky dirt, I was intent on putting in a Victory Garden. 

cute picture of me and my adorable kids
We were(are)at war and I like mid-century stuff and vegetables so it seemed like an obvious thing to do. I first put what is now commonly referred to as an Urban Farm Garden in wine barrels, but this fall we added a raised bed.  The first seed planting was eaten by all sorts of woodsy varmints and the second round sprouted and then burned up in the intense late October heatwave. 

The inner First Lady in me needs to grow my own food, possibly so that my kids can eat in the backyard and give me more time to drink coffee and glue stuff. So yesterday, possibly in vain, I began round three with starter plants.

I pulled out the last of the tomato crop and planted a more extensive herb garden. We were able to maintain the carrots and radishes from the original planting and now the remaining barrels and bed have red cabbage, cauliflower and bok choy. I'm hoping the third time's a charm.


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