Monday, August 31, 2009

Great Products: Get This Book, You Crafty Mamas

Order this book now! Awesome vintage knitting for the wee ones -- I want it! Must have it!
Their homepage
And the book on Amazon

um, yes, please?!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Kids: Great Designs, Indie Designer

I stumbled upon some great graphic design at Lekker Designs on Cafe Press. The name caught my eye because it's one of my favorite Dutch words, meaning, basically, 'Delicious!' (and it's so much fun to say!)
Besides the other clever stuff on the site, there are some adorable kids designs that you can pop on the onesie or tee of your choice for around $16. Plus, being CafePress, there's no limit to the bibs, water bottles, notecards, etc, etc, etc, you can splash your favorite graphic across. So check it out.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Fall Inspiration - Obsessed With a New Wardrobe!

So I kinda, sorta have this haircut now, and I LOVE it!
The problem is that my old wardrobe just looks sad to me now that I have a hair'style'. So, for Fall, I have been dreaming of a whole new wardrobe. I can sew, and I've been searching for good patterns and fabrics (which isn't easy, I might add), but a girl can still dream, can't she?

My Fall Wishlist:

Tory Burch skirt

Rebecca Taylor tunic

Nanette Lepore jacket

Modcloth dress

A raccoon collar, which can be purchased on ebay for between $30 - $70

East5th cashmere blend coat (but in camel, please)

D&G Blouses

Anthropologie goodness:

(sailor pants! yes!)

Tuleh silk dress and cardigan

Zac Posen

Colored and open-work tights from

Modcloth tights. Oh, yes, please.

Elegant cloche from Hats In The Belfry:
Directions on how to sew your own cloche (which I will be trying!) can be found here

The Perfect Brown Riding Boots (from Frye, of course):

Stuart Weitzman Oxfords
Leopard flats from Target:

Frye Oxfords:

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Kids: DIY Sidewalk Chalk!

Mad Maggie Designs features this recipe for making your very own, custom sidewalk chalk! Um, brilliant!

"What You Need:

Toilet paper or paper towel tubes
Duct Tape
Wax Paper
3/4 cup warm water
Small bucket or disposable container
1 1/2 cups Plaster of Paris
2-3 tablespoons tempera paint

What You Do:
1. If you are using paper towel tubes, cut each tube in half. Cover one end of each tube with duct tape. Cut as many pieces of wax paper as you have tubes. Each piece should be as long as the tube and about 4 inches wide. Roll up each piece of wax paper and slip it into the tube.

2. Pour the water into the bucket. Sprinkle the Plaster of Paris over the water and stir the mixture thoroughly with a spoon. Mix in the Tempera Paint (If you would like pastel colors, you can mix brighter colors of Tempura powder with some white.)

3. Place each tube tape side down, on a level surface. Pour the wet plaster mixture into the tubes. Lightly tap the sides of each tube to release air bubbles, then set the plaster-filled tube aside to harden for a few days. Once they are dry, peel off the tubes and wax paper. Your chalk is ready for action!"

Thank you, Leslie!!! You rock!

Food: Crazy Good Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins

I wanted to call these 'Slap Yer Mama' Good Banana Muffins, but I was afraid I might offend somebody. I've been playing around with a basic muffin recipe for a long time (it started out as a cross between an old friend's recipe and the one in 'How To Cook Everything' by Mark Bittman), and this, I believe, is the final product. Whoohoo!

Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins
makes 12

4 Extremely ripe bananas
1/2 Cup Sugar
1 Egg, beaten
1/3 C melted Butter
1/2 Tsp Vanilla Extract
1 Tsp Baking Powder
1 Tsp Baking Soda
1/2 Tsp Salt
1 1/2 C Flour (I did half whole wheat, half all-purpose)
1/4 Cup Chopped Semi Sweet Baking Chocolate, or mini semi sweet chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 12 muffin tin, set aside.
Mash the bananas in a medium bowl, mix in butter, Vanilla and Egg. In a smaller bowl, combine dry ingredients. Fold dry ingredients into banana mixture until just entirely moistened - do not over mix. Fold in chocolate. Spoon into muffin tin. Bake 15 - 20 minutes, turning halfway through, until a tester inserted in a muffin comes out clean. Serve warm or at room temperature. It won't matter, because these will be gone in a flash!

Interiors: Inspiration Under My Nose

As I've mentioned before, I love great interior design. I spend a lot of time gazing at photos of other people's beautiful spaces, and have even posted about it now and then. Recently, on a rainy afternoon, I started to admire the little things about my own home that inspire me.

Our pot rack with my man's grandmother's cast iron skillets. Every time I see those, I itch to use them and honor the woman who cooked with them for ages:

My sister's art above our kitchen sink. I love this print, and I love the vintage light fixture (even though it's nothing 'special'):

A part of my blue and white pottery collection in the kitchen:

Black and white dog, black and white floor:

Our books, oh, our books...:
The vintage mantelpiece with original tile and great cast iron screen with my silver collection:

It may be cliche, but I love Spode Blue Italian (and a man who can grill!):

Antique settee that's been in my family since it was made -when? I don't know. The pillow was my very first embroidery project - A Ralph Waldo Emerson quote, of course:

I love throwing stuff together that doesn't 'go together' - the top two boxes were presents for my man (his Valentine's book was in the box I covered in a map with 'You mean the world to me' as the key [I got the idea from another blog - anyone remember whose???], and the smaller one contains a WWI compass he received for Father's Day from his daughter ['May you always guide me true' is written inside]), plus a vintage pincushion lady that I love:

One of our mini-collections of Asian miscellanea. My man found the Japanese hunt scene tray at an antique store and bartered the guy down cheap (I was so proud). All of the red tail hawk feathers were found objects - the ironic thing about that is that I love red tail hawks, and was studying to become a falconer when I found each of them:

I love the macabre, and slightly Victorian-era naturalist inspired things (I really want some taxidermy, but everyone else thinks I'm nuts):

Found these old frames at a yard sale, and they're waiting (perhaps forever) for their purpose on the windowsill:

Our daughter loves her 'very own' rocking chair! I painted it to match the decor, but tried to still make it a little cute:

Flowers in the afternoon sun always make me happy, as does the Mexican pottery, of course:


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