Tuesday, December 29, 2009

KC Willis Fans

I am a BIG fan of KC Willis. Above is an example of her work.

She has online workshops where she teaches the basics of her techniques and inspires you to new creative heights. www.collagecamp.ning.com.

After Collage Camp there's Mixed Media Mania where you take what you learned at Collage Camp and in these workshops she teaches Altars and Shrines, Altered Books and Works on Paper. Fun stuff. www.mixedmediamania.ning.com.

And for those of you already making art and wanting to know how you take it to the next level and get yourself a regional or national audience, next week starts the super exciting Marketing Mindset. www.marketingmindset.ning.com. Check out the Main Page and take advantage of the Intro Price which will only last until January 8th.

And if video workshops aren't your thing...how about KC Willis Live!. You can take a multi-day class with her in her very sweet Victorian studio house in Longmont, Colorado. Check out the details at www.studioretreats.ning.com.
This is on my List of Things I Must Do.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Happy Holidays!

I made the little doll dress ornaments. What a lot of fun I had playing with the bits of ribbon, lace, glitter and glue.
Best wishes for Happy Holidays and all the best in the New Year!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Mates for Casey's Bathing Beauties

I've had this photograph for years - came across it in an album of photos from an auction. Just for fun, I couldn't resist scanning it in after seeing Casey's bathing beauties here (scroll down a bit to see the bathing suit pictures). Do you think they're a match?

Thursday, December 10, 2009


I'm participating in Lisa's Imagine - Creative Writing Thursdays. After looking at this lovely photo, she said to write whatever came to mind. so here goes:

Look at those curls! They used to be called ringlets and maybe they still are but you don't see them anymore except in old photographs or movies. I can remember when the first curling irons came out, I was about 10 years old and my parents engaged the teenage daughters of a friend to babysit my younger sister and I for the evening.

The teenage girls loved my long, thick hair that had a bit of a natural wave. They saw the potential for wonderful, tumbling ringlets. Their new curling iron took a very long time to heat up but finally it was hot enough to start the process. After much discussion and trial and error about exactly how to hold the iron and how many curls to make and how long to keep the hot iron in my hair so that the ringets would hold, their efforts were successful and I emerged with a few of the coveted curls.

I don't remember how they turned out exactly but I did enjoy being the center of attention with the two girls. However, my mother was less than happy with my new hairdo. Instead of gasping in admiration, she was furious!

Her belief was that if you had some natural curl in your hair, tampering with nature via a hot iron or a permanent (perm was we call them now) would destroy the natural curl and make your hair straight!

There, that's what this picture reminded me of. It was fun to bring a distant memory into the present. Thanks, Lisa for the opportunity.

Let's talk about storage ...

I know everyone is talking about Christmas and decorating and I'm out of sync but I have to talk about storage.

I keep bringing more vintage finds and craft supplies into my attic crafting space and it's a challenge to find space to store them partly because of the very low slanted walls. I can only fit 2-tiered book shelves and low cupboards along sides of the room.

But have a look at all of these storage boxes, cabinets and suitcases:

And guess what' inside them all?
NOTHING, they're empty! Because I'm afraid I'll forget what is inside them if I fill them up. Labels? That's sounds simple enough but I like to have things out in the open and easier to grab. I don't want to have to move piles of boxes or suitcases to get at my stuff.
... feel free to make suggestions if you think of a solution.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

I Did It! My First Journal Page

Thanks to Teesha Moore and her fabulous videos, I finally started a Journal! Here is my first page - not quite finished and not quite perfect but I'm happy with how it's coming along.

I learned so much in the process of finding images and playing with them on this page. Fear and fun = exciting!

Now that I see the page near completion, I see how much of 'me' is showing up - my shyness for one thing - look how my subject is peeking out from behind those roses.
I can't wait to do some more pages.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

A Few Attic Photos

As promised, I'm sharing a few attic photos. I can't seem to get the entire
space tidied up at the same time so I'm just posting the areas that for the moment aren't
buried in 'stuff'.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Simple Woman's Daybook for October 15th, 2009

FOR TODAY October 15, 2009

Outside my attic window... the trees swaying in the wind on this chilly Autumn day.

I am thinking ... how lucky I am to have this room to myself!

I am thankful for ... my cozy, warm house.

From the kitchen ... looking forward to homemade squash soup for lunch.

I am wearing... jeans, turtleneck sweater and vest - my cold weather 'uniform'.

I am creating ... a tidy room so I can take some pictures to show you.

I am going ... to my knitting group tonight. We will chat, munch on yummy snacks, have a glass of wine and maybe even do some knitting!

I am reading ... a good book, with romance and intrigue. Sorry,I can't remember the name or author right now.

I am hoping... I can take some photos of my crafting space once it's all tidied up.

I am hearing... my clock ticking which means it's quiet in the house which I love.

Around the house... my daughter is working on her computer and dh is making a cup of tea.

One of my favorite things... is being able to putter with no errands to take me away from home.

A few plans for the rest of the week: I'll go to the Farmer's Market tomorrow to buy some fresh vegetable, fall apples and cut flowers. On the weekend, I want to go to the Antique Market.

The dog photo is the picture I am sharing...
it was taken on our summer vacation. This 'blues dog' belonged to a street musician who was performing in a town we visited.

Thank you to The Simple Woman's Daybook.

Friday, October 9, 2009

A Couple of New Button Things and a New Header!

Look at this cute yard sale find - a little burlap tote that was already covered in buttons - how cute is that.
And here is my latest cross-stitch project - The Button Tree from The Drawn Thread. Fast to stitch and fun to play with the button arrangement for it.

I love my new header - FREE from The Background Fairy - Thank you, Karen!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Behold my Button Bracelets!

This next one is gorgeous! I didn't make it - my friend, Dianne did. She has a blog set up ready to go and will start posting soon (right, Dianne?). When she does I'll let you know. I can't wait to see what she shares with us! Look at those colours! This one is a lot of fun to wear too.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Vintage Button Bouquets

I was so inspired by Susan of T-Cozy's recent blog post with her wonderful button bouquets that I just had to get out my stash of buttons and make some bouquets for myself!
It was so much fun to dump out all my little button jars, boxes and suitcases and pick through them all, sorting and trying different combinations.
DH wasn't that impressed by the mess on the dining room table and on the coffee table and sofa so I tidied everything back up as quickly as I could and I'm happy with the results.
I still love the pearlies the best, I think.
And I have to say a few words about photography; I have the greatest respect for Susan's photographs. I totally lost patience with photographing these images. They wouldn't behave and all stay in focus or the image came out way too dark and the button composition was unruly etc. Pretty please, Susan, do a posting re 'Photo Tips'.
Check out Susan's photographs here and enjoy her lovely bouquets and studio.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Why am I ironing my pajamas ??

Those who know me know that I heat up my iron about three times a year and it's usually to press a white blouse or a tablecloth that is going to be used for a holiday dinner. There was one exception; a couple of months ago, I found myself ironing a pile of vintage handkerchiefs on a snowy winter morning. No idea what struck me but I just had a crazy, er, I mean unusual, urge to iron. Hasn't happened before, or since.

But ironing my pajamas wasn't an urge, it was a decision I made because I know I won't be able to sleep in London, England if I'm wearing wrinkled pj's ! Right, we're off to London for 8 days, 7 night. Can't go across the pond carting wrinkled pj's, that's for sure.
We have a list a mile long of places we 'must see' and do. The list grows every day and every time I speak to anyone who has visited or lived there. The owner of my local bookstore just laughed when I told him we were going for a week. That's when I started to get stressed. But wait, holidays are supposed to be fun and relaxing... I'm going to have to consciously decide that I'll see and do as much as possible in our week AND we'll fit in time for a relaxing teas and a pint in a cozy neighbourhood pub. After all, we can go back another time, right?

Some of my "musts": V&A, Tate Gallery, Harrod's, Cath Kidston's, The Button Queen, Kensington Gardens, Portobello Market for the vintage things etc.

One day, we're taking a bus tour to Windsor Castle, Stonehenge and Bath. I know that day is going to be a whirlwind. Bath is our last stop and the place I am most looking forward to. Have to see the Jane Austen Center!

I just added a Marks and Spencer visit to my list this morning because Alison of Brocante Home mentioned it in her June 8th post. We used to have some 'Sparkies' (here, in Canada our nickname for them was "Marks and Sparks") but, sadly, they've all closed now.

Have you been and what was your fave thing about London? Do you have any "must see's" for me to add, especially where to find vintage items including ephemera?

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

A visit with 'the girls'

A photo collage of my visit to The Primitive Heart store in St. George, Ontario last Friday with my friend, Joy. When we arrived, the owner of the store, Christine was outdoors with her 'girls', Henny Penny, Miss Mabel, Florence and Trixie.

Before going into the shop to browse all the goodies, we watched the girls make their way around the yard and I followed them as they clucked their way through the carpet of forget-me-nots. Such a pretty setting!

Friday, April 10, 2009

Bonne Maman

A few nights ago, I was sorting through magazine clippings to add to my 3-ring-binder when I came across this article from the British Christmas issue of Country Living magazine. (No, don't panic, it is Easter and I'm just mentioning Christmas in passing - Happy Easter to all).
I was mesmerized by the photographs of the different ways readers had used the empty Bonne Maman jars for storage. Here are some of the clipping photographs.
I was wishing I was in England or France so I could enjoy some Bonne Maman preserves and start my own collection of cute jars. We went out for dinner the next day and browsed through the nearby supermarket on our way home. Quelle surprise! There was a display of Bonne Maman jams right before my eyes!
The Fig Jam jumped into my cart and came home with me. Tres delicieux! Now I need to go back and buy more flavours to get my collection going.

Friday, March 20, 2009

... more Kitchen Photos

Just a couple more photos to share ...

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Kitchen - Before & After

Finally, after 2 or 3 years of dithering (and being encouraged and prodded along by a friend - thanks, Andrew!) we chose a granite countertop to replace the ceramic tile counters that were in the kitchen when we moved in over 20 years ago. The update feels fresh and we like the look - hope you do too!
There are only a couple of AFTER photos because we weren't happy with any of the pictures that we took. It sure makes me appreciate photo-stylists who do magazine layouts! I'll take another batch of photos later this week.

Monday, March 16, 2009

The Charm House - What I Collect

Today, I'm posting one of my collections to join The Charm House's party. I buy and sell vintage items and have sold a number of thimbles over the years but couldn't bring myself to part with these ones. Look at that cute little one!

Another view of the thimbles for you here.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

My Daybook - February 25th

I am participating in Peggy's Simple Woman's Daybook today.

~For Today~
Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Outside My Window...

the sun is shining and the sky is bright blue

I am thinking...

that I don't blog often enough

I am thankful for...
morning coffee with cream

From the kitchen...

Wednesday~Hot Beef Sandwiches with gravy, mashed potatoes and green peas
Thursday~No cooking, I'll be at work all day.

I am wearing...

flannel nightgown and housecoat and wool socks - charming!

I am creating...

"inchies" at Bizzy B stamping class tonight!

I am reading...

That Summer in Sicily - M. de Blasi

I am hoping...

to sift through and let go of surplus kitchen stuff

I am hearing...

the old pendulum clock ticking

Around the house...

are a few loads of laundry to finish and a kitchen floor to mop.

One of my favorite things...

petting my cat - I have two but only one of them lets me pet him. Well, the other one might let me for a minute, but there's a chance he'll decide he's had enough and without warning, he'll bite and scratch.

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week:

Really looking forward to my class tonight!

Here is a picture that I am sharing...

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day!

Well, I'm very pleased to have finally made something in my new attic space! This top Valentine tag is the one I made for my daughter. She loves the colour pink!
This bottom tag, I made for my son - it was the first one I made and I tried to make it look less pink and girl-y by adding the music notes. I mailed it off to the west coast earlier this week and am hoping it arrived in time for today.

These are some of my first efforts at making tags and I hope my layouts improve as I get more experience. It's new to me to be designing as I go along with no idea how things will turn out. the process is fun even though a bit nerve-wracking!

Can any of you experienced creative readers tell me if it's normal to be afraid of creating a dud?

Saturday, January 10, 2009

The Lost Button

Ten years ago, I cross-stitched and assembled this sewing case. A friend of mine had stitched the same case and she found a beautiful silver-coloured button with a floral shape to finish hers off.

She had an extra floral button so she gave it to me to use on my sewing case.

By the time I stitched and got the case put together, I had forgotten about the special button so I used the one you see in the photograph.

When I showed her the case a few months later, she asked me why I hadn't used the button she gave me.

I've been looking for that button in my stash of stuff ever since she asked me about it over 9 years ago!

A couple of weeks ago, it came to me that I had sewn the button onto the button vest that I had made that you can see in this photograph.
I thought it was hilarious that the button had been right under my eyes all that time and for a few days, I had in the back of my mind that I would share this story with you.

When I got around to photographing the vest I realized that I hadn't used the button on the vest after all!

I'm still trying to figure out if I had a dream that the button was on the vest. I could see it there so clearly in my mind's eye.

But the button is still missing. I'm not giving up, it's got to be here somewhere.

Late-ish Happy New Year!

Happy New Year - I know it's late-ish but I picked up this really cute New Year's Postcard at The Sunday Market last weekend and just had to share it. Isn't it cute?


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