Saturday, September 16, 2017

Mid Mod Christmas Treasures: Berggren Trayner 12 Days of Christmas

I was so excited to find this COMPLETE SET of vintage 12 Days of Christmas tiles by Berggren! You can read a little bit about these very popular artists here; no doubt you'll immediately recognize their iconic style from your childhood, or, from thrift store shelves!

I can't afford to keep them right now, so they're offered for sale in my shop.  But before I let them go, I had to preserve them for myself in photos -- and share them with you!  So, here you go: a rare look at a mid century modern, vintage treasure:

One of my favorite things about these tiles is how Berggren has interpreted each of the folk song's images so cleverly -- for example, the way the drummers and dancers are differently dressed and have different props.  And the birds also have their own distinct personalities and seem to be interacting with each other! It's so modern and yet so old-fashioned, and whimsical!

If you look as the days go on, all of the characters are added to the tiles, until they start to spill over onto the golden border.  I also love how the last day has the little "Finis" sign!

I hope you've enjoyed this, and, lest you think I'm talking Christmas too early, just know that there are less than 100 days until we're celebrating this year!

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Vintage Crafters Cafe Swap

I belong to a few Facebook vintage groups, and one of my favorites is Vintage Crafters Cafe.  The group had a vintage pin cushion swap recently; we all made a pin cushion from at least 75% vintage materials, and swapped with another member.  I really had fun designing this one!  First, I sewed a pumpkin using vintage fabrics (only two of the fabrics were "new"):
When finished, I mounted it on an iron candlestick.  It made for a tall, "statement" pincushion!  My partner won't lose it on her sewing table, that's for sure!
I decorated it with some pins and charms and buttons and things, in an Autumn-y palette.
Don't you love the rusty corkscrew wires, and the vintage orange millinery flower?
I included this fun packet of vintage sewing notions from my collection!  Lots of fun old stuff...
  I decorated this old Rexall drug store bag with fabric, a measuring tape, and old buckle!

 Look at this little package of chenille carrots, so adorably wrapped (not by me!)
An antique needle box with thread, pretty flosses, and a grouping of vintage ribbon scraps were among the little treasures inside the bag. 

 The little green Gland-O-Lac pouch is a tiny sewing kit/advertising giveaway from the 40's!  In the tiny brown bag with the pointing finger were some black glass buttons.
Then, to go with the theme, I sent along these sweet pumpkin scented tealights that came so cutely packaged!  My partner, Kathy, seemed to really like all of it!  And here's what Kathy created and sent to me:
Inside of a pretty butterfly box, she sent gifts and this adorable little pin cushion she created from an antique hankie and crochet lace set inside an antique china dish!  With a little doggie on top!
You know (but she didn't!) how much I love blue and white china!  She did a creative and detailed job on what she said was her first time making a pin cushion! 

These gifts came with it: delicate lace, the runner with crochet trim that is underneath it all, and a sweet floral hankie!  Look at the vintage safety pin she included on the lace!
It turned out to be such a fun swap!  Thanks to Kathy and to Michelle, the Vintage Crafters Cafe page administrator!
The only other thing I've made lately is these little likenesses of Art Garfunkel and Paul Simon (my cats); I made the little heads last Fall with some Paperclay leftover from making snowmen.  It's taken me this long, but I found some fabric I liked and used it to make some little rice-and-fluff stuffed kittens.  They make me smile on my kitchen shelf.
Art and Paul approve.  Actually, I think they are both dying to get their little paws on those little balls!
I wish you a safe and relaxing Labor Day weekend!  We're enjoying lovely weather and I'm trying to relax as much as possible so that it really feels like a holiday!

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Who Gives a Scrap?

Has one of these creative reuse, recycle, upcycle CRAFT stores popped up near you yet?  Oh my goodness, I visited this one today and it was like heaven!
It was as if you were in the sewing/crafting section of your favorite thrift shop and found something amazing for pennies...except, EVERYTHING was amazing and everything costed pennies!
I spent a total of $6 and got all of this:
Vintage Hallmark embossed wrapping paper - perfect for Valentines! - an unopened vintage tissue roses kit, beautiful old card box, NIP Dept. 56 garland...
 a bride and groom cake topper that I've been looking for for a project, pretty old pin box...
 3 yards of fabric with finished edges -- perfect to make table runners from...
 and a bag of all these finished quilt squares, plus extra pieces...
someone worked very hard on these, and most of the fabric is raw silk.  I'm thinking pretty pumpkins!
Not shown: a stack lovely blue deckled writing paper, some large mailing envelopes, and four little scarecrows for Fall decorating.  All for that $6!

I only took a few photos inside because I was so busy looking at all the great stuff -- but they had it all: fabric, findings, beads, yarn, wood, glass, paper, antiques to re-purpose, etc. etc. etc.  I could easily have spent all day there!
Check out the adorable signs on the bins of vintage textiles!
Everyone there was really nice!
And, yes, of course there were buttons!

The shop accepts donations and the proceeds go to a local youth symphony program!  I love it that I now have somewhere to take my destash crafts and vintage-y things where I know they'll be treasured and appreciated!

That, and al fresco lunch out treated by Rebecca, made for a fabulous Saturday!  I hope you're having a great weekend, too!

Sunday, August 6, 2017

August is the Sunday of Summer

I'm so happy to finally have time to come back for a visit on my blog!  And, I actually have some rather good news: my husband will be starting a temporary job tomorrow.  It is of unknown duration, and right here in town.  It's not a great job, and it doesn't pay much -- but it is the first job he's been offered despite his herculean efforts, so we are happy!
We found out on Friday, and that evening we'd been invited to a karaoke night at a nearby venue; I hadn't been to karaoke in 20 years, I think -- it hasn't really changed!  It was fun to be out with friends on a night we really felt like celebrating!
We had way too much fun and, gosh, did we need that!  To my left is Rebecca, her husband Conrad, and on my right is Vonnie, her husband Bob, and Dennis.  The sparkly lights on us are coming from the karaoke guy's fancy light set up.  Don't I look like I'm giving Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer a run for his money?!  We closed down the show that night and got up and sang many times!  I do love to sing, and learned in adulthood that I don't fear performing, or public speaking in front of a crowd.
Just the week before we'd managed to pull off a surprise party for Rebecca's 50th birthday!  I made the banner above over a couple of evenings the week before.  It says, 50 & Fabulous.  Which she is!  The fluffy tissue flower above the banner came from Hobby Lobby, and was one of a set of three.
I used mostly vintage elements.  It was such a joy to put together!  I love the neutral palette, but Rebecca also likes color so I threw in some splashy bright colors, too.

This was my favorite part of the banner; the little image is a shattered silk crazy quilt piece made from a cigar silk portraying a woman on the beach.  She has long dark hair, like Rebecca, who happens to love the beach like I do -- so I just had to put it on the banner!
We used the banner as a photo prop and most of the guests posed with her in front of it!  This photo is my favorite, I think!  Can you tell we're all mommies of grown-up kids, and not grandparents yet?
One last surprise was a little album of all the photos from the party that I made for Rebecca!
Do you remember the wooden piece I mosaic'd and painted that I showed you in my last post?  Well, here it is -- improved.  I like it for its cheeriness.  I would like to learn to letter better, someday.

I'm still working at my full time temporary job, and enjoying it; there is always a lot to do, everyone is chill, and the days just fly by.  At home, we're continuing the decluttering we started when we were going to show the house and move.  It's such a great feeling to let go of things!
This is about all I'm keeping from my ginormous collection of McCoy pottery!  I took it down from atop my kitchen cabinets and now have it in a display cabinet, which I like better.  I'll be listing all the other McCoy pieces in my Etsy shop as soon as I can.  My Christmas in July sale in the shop wasn't a huge success, but I did sell 6 or 7 Christmas items and there was lots of traffic to the store, so I'm as pleased as can be about that!
Another result of the almost-move is that we finally packed up Ben's childhood bedroom (I cried BUCKETS) and made it into an office.  As a matter of fact, this is where I'm sitting right now!  It is so cozy and conducive to writing; every time I come up  here I stay longer than intended -- and that's a good thing.  Another positive change.  And I'm using this area to pack up my Etsy purchases for shipping, too.

We have been having TONS of rain -- they are calling it monsoon season, and I can't remember a summer with so many heavy storms since 2004!
Of course, the plants are loving it, and everything is GREEN!

They say August is the Sunday of summer -- and that is my check in with you on this August Sunday!  How are you doing?