Sunday, June 28, 2009

mackinac island lilac festival adventure

Sunset at our campsite, on a little peninsula, just over the bridge.

Fyn learned the sign "boat" the day we rode the ferry!

The lilacs were just starting to bloom, and we enjoyed a picnic under the lilac grove where Tommy proposed to me five years ago!

Biking around the island on rented bikes, I was so thankful for the restrooms midway around!

Who can resist kids at a lemonade stand?

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Reed's Lake Art Festival in Grand Rapids this weekend!

Tommy, Fyn and I are packing our things and preparing for a trip to Grand Rapids. You can find us on Sunday, at Reed's Lake, corner of Lake Drive and Wealthy Street in East Grand Rapids, with all the newest purses and bags.

What's the latest?
It's true, diaper bags. Life changes so much, so fast.

We are looking forward to seeing you at the Reed's Lake Clothesline Art Festival on Saturday!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Fyn, smiling

He's so funny! He smooched me all over my face tonight, while we were lying in the grass in the front yard. mamalucky! I love summer.

I spend a wonderful day, the second day of summer, working on "Cherry", our 1988 Ford Econoline van. Yesterday, a friend told me that it was called a "carpet van". And it has carpet! Pink carpet! I suppose it's really mauve, but who wants to say that? Pink is so much more fun, like black cherry ice cream...

Tommy and Fyn were relaxing by the river, and I was sewing like crazy and packing a little. It was like making a fort. So now it has curtains all around the front, on the side doors and on the back, all of which are easily removable. There are pockets on the doors for all our stuff, vinyl so we can see what is where. There's much more, but I must stop. I've been told that I'm WAY too much. But it's so fun for me! Mackinac Island lilac festival, here we come!

One blog caught my attention today, while I was taking a break from all the inventing. It's likely that you won't see my house in Better Homes & Gardens, but maybe "Cherry" could make it to Readymade or Dwell. Hmm, I wonder, I wonder.

Caught up with my cousin too...

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Fabric Napkin Tutorial

Want to reduce your impact on the earth?

Here's a "green" solution, which you can make using your favorite new, eco-friendly or recycled fabric. You can use any 100% cotton fabric, but if you use the same on front and back to start, it will look neater. It takes 2 yards of fabric for 6 napkins (12 pieces total) or 4 yards of fabric for 12 napkins (24 pieces total).

You will need:
sewing machine
ruler or cutting mat

Preshrink your fabric, by washing it and putting it in the dryer.
(If you have a serger, you might want to serge the edges to prevent fraying before you wash it.)
I've learned from experience that skipping this step will result in bunchy, wrinkly napkins!
Press the edges with a hot iron before cutting, to make sure they are nice and smooth.

Cut 2 squares 14" each for each napkin.

Lay fabrics out with right sides together ***very important!!***

Pin along one edge, placing pins about 4" apart.

Stitch around edge about 1/4" from edge.
I use the side of the presser foot as my guide.
You can also put a piece of masking tape right on your machine.
Pivot at corners and leave open between pins for turning.

To pivot at corners:
Make sure your needle is down by turning the large wheel on the side of the machine.
Lift the presser foot.
Turn your fabric.
Put presser foot down and continue stitching.

Lower your presser foot and continue to stitch along the edge of the fabric approx. 1/4" from edge.

Turn your napkin right side out and press with hot iron.

If you hold the corners and stretch it tight, lay it down and press, the unstitched opening should turn under for you!

Topstitch close to edge, approx. 1/8"

LinkThe completed set of a dozen napkins.

4 yards of fabric (45"wide)
Heather Bailey
Caramel Crescent

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Six things that make me happy...

so, Sixpence and a Blue Moon, you got me thinking...
And, since I couldn't stop at six, there are seven...

I love sun on the water, especially Lake Michigan. Like the shore, only fresh! This is in Empire, at Sleeping Bear Dunes, on the Pierce Stocking Scenic Drive.

I love this hat, worn by my friend, Mia, on a showshoe trek to the river.

Pancakes! even for dinner. Last time Tommy made them for me, he whisked coconut oil, almond milk and egg together before adding the flour and they were amazing! Friends made the maple syrup too...

I love my little sister's homemade pearapple pie on Memorial Day at the lake (Green Lake this time...). She's an incredible cook!

I love living on the end of a dead end street, with my husband and little boy. This was at the opposite end of the street one morning this past winter.

I love the first greens of the year! We've been especially enjoying Pac Choi and Mibuna greens. Our dear friends at Ware Farm lovingly raised these babies, warming the greenhouse with a wood stove, then planting in cold frames.

I love chocolate, handmade by a local artisan, and I love her title "chocolatier".

What do you love?

Monday, June 8, 2009

Little Hende shirt and hat

Holly makes the coolest onesies, hats & shirts for babies, boys and girls!

happy 1st birthday, Britton!

This weekend, one of our good friends celebrated his first birthday! We are happy to be part of the big party, and we are thankful for our friend Chandra and Bart, their familes and friends.

the birthday boy!

custom birthday banner

make a wish!
Chandra made three different kinds of homemade ice cream to go with the cake!

party flags galore!

dancing to the music of Lake Effect
Our friends, Kyna and Taj, sharing a post-nap snuggle.

Fyn's taking a ride in Britton's wagon! More party flags hanging in the trees make a festive backdrop.

... on the ride home...

Sunday, June 7, 2009

a peek into my studio...

Here it is! The new sewing table, complete with a newly organized set of shelves, a thread shelf and a vertical sewing box (I stuck it all my bulletin board with pins!). Lately, I've found myself in there just reveling in all the organization and it makes me want to work! Creativity is an amazing gift, although somewhat unpredictable!

The table is tall, so I can stand at it and sew. The idea was to have a place where I could work without a chair, since my little monkey is climbing on everything. When I'm not using a machine, I'm learning to switch it off right away. He did find the pedal today, so now I'll have to be extra diligent. There is room for them on the shelf underneath when they need to be stashed for vacuuming.

I love this table leg! It's a tree limb which had it's bark removed by squirrels!
For the skirt, I stapled some Designer's Guild linen onto the top, and spritzed it with water to remove the wrinkles. Ironing might have been easier, but I wanted to make sure it would work first, and then, there was no going back!

Now, this is deluxe! There are holes in the desktop next to each of my machines, so the cords go down underneath, rather than cluttering up the surface! Thank you, David Moehle, for the great ideas in addition to the workmanship! If you live in Northern Michigan, and are looking for custom wood design using recycled material, he's your guy!

Two fabric covered bulletin boards are covered with ephemera, inspired by a good friend, Marcy at Mecca Crystal Lake. There are some of her works here too (the ATC's on the left board). All you need is an old bulletin board, fabric and a staple gun. Mine were $.50 each at a yard sale a year ago. I love bulletin boards! The gorgeous brown dish was a gift from another crafty friend, and holds one of three magnetic pin cushion, scissors and other sewing

A serger scrapcatcher! I finally replaced the "storebought" bag that catches the serger scraps with a beautiful orange linen. It was a bit tricky to figure out how to get it attached to the padded base that goes under the serger, but I did it.