Wednesday, February 29, 2012


I currently have a pinched radial nerve that is causing shooting/burning pain down my right arm. It has been hurting for about two weeks, and I have gotten various types of professional help for it, and it was on the mend for awhile.... but now it is back with a vengeance. I wish I could paint some pretty magic sticks like this and wave them around to make it go away.

Monday, February 27, 2012


For my friend Nancy's wedding, I helped her gather vintage cake stands to be used to display the many dessert pies served. She wanted a combo of metal stands and glass stands. I thrifted the first few stands, and realized that most cake stands are all about the same height, and that to create a display of stands of varying heights I'd have to get crafty with epoxy. I gathered a bunch of metal and glass plates, and a bevy of glass compotes, vases and metal candlestick holders and went to work gluing components together to create a varied height display. Here are a few of the plates and base options before.
Here are the stands as I was arranging and gluing them together.

...and here they are at the wedding

....and all dressed up with pie
my friend Robin took these wedding pics on her iphone in instagram.
Here is one of Tyler and I that she took outside of the airstream trailer camp at the ranch.

Friday, February 24, 2012 the ranch

We are in west Texas this weekend for a friend's wedding, which is being held at a ranch. My friend Robin took these pics of the rustic camp where we stayed last night in Instagram. I really need an iphone so that I can take part in putting pretty filters on my photos.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012


Tyler has always wanted to build a compost bin. He currently purchases compost for the yard, so with my new effort to eat a more plant based diet, it gave him the perfect reason to build a bin and make his own compost. We have an overgrown side yard, where we decided to locate the bin. First, he measured the space and we cleared the overgrown mess of vegetation.

Next, he started building the box on a cold Saturday in January, with Sarah's assistance.

Here is the finished bin. He built it with two compartments, because I believe you have to rotate your mixture while it's composting. The lids lift up, and the center panel between the two bins slides up so that you can shovel between the bins. The front panels also lift up in the same fashion that a garage door lifts to allow you to access the compost once it is ready.

There is a little bit of a science to composting, which I don't really know much about. For now, all I have to do is open the lid and throw in my biodegradable bag of veggie trash.

Then, I use the pitchfork to cover the bag, with the already composting mixture of yard clippings, leaves and plant remnants.

and voila'....all gone

In our kitchen we are trying out this Full Circle countertop compost collector with biodegradable bags. For the most part I like it. It does need to be taken out about every third day (at the longest), or fruit flies start circling.

Monday, February 20, 2012

#451...patchwork scottie

My little friend Violet really likes dogs. She had a play-date with my dogs recently, and let out big excited squeals when they came anywhere near her. So, for her first birthday, I thought it appropriate to make her a doggie of her own.
I made this little patchwork scottie dog from Denyse Schmidt's free pattern, found here. I used bits of recycled wool from vintage sweaters and skirts as well as various cottons to make Violet's puppy. I would rate the dog as an intermediate sewing project. The directions are very good, but all of the corners that get sewn put the pattern out of the beginner category. 
It is really awesome that Denyse offers free patterns. Sarah and I are thinking of making this market tote as her next "learning to sew" project.

Friday, February 17, 2012

#450...camellia clippings

My dwarf camellia tree has been blooming for a few weeks. It is almost through its blooming season, and I wanted to clip a few blooms to enjoy indoors for Valentine's Day. I'm a few days late, but we now have a pretty pink bouquet to enjoy for the weekend.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

#449...pocket square

In a few weeks, Tyler and I are attending a wedding on a ranch, and we've been gathering together our wedding western digs. I've been on the lookout for a western inspired pocket square for Tyler. I decided that for Valentine's Day, I'd sew him up a couple of options. I found a couple pieces of vintage silk, and quickly stitched them up. I tested them out in a vest, wondering which pattern he will choose to wear. I just stuck the square in the pocket to view the fabric, but there are in fact some very fancy methods for folding a pocket square....see here.

Monday, February 13, 2012

#448...trina turk's home

On a dreary Monday.... following a dreary weekend here in Houston, I am digging the sunny, mid-century, vibe of fashion designer Trina Turks's home, featured here in Elle Decor.

Friday, February 10, 2012

#447...lately in my kitchen

I've been busy whipping up dishes from the veggies I got last week. Cooking is not my forte, so I'm pretty pleased with myself that I made these edible and also yummy dishes.

....and to top off all this healthy eating, I gobbled up two of these giant shortbread jam heart cookies that an admirer left on my porch as a sweet Valentine's treat!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

#446...wikstenmade tank

I bought this tank pattern from Jenny of Wiksten last year, and finally got around to testing it out.
It is a really simple sewing pattern, but it employs some of my favorite techniques like a french seam, and bias finished neck and arm holes. You have the choice of making a shirt length tank or a dress length tank. I made the longer tank as a nightie for my friend Nancy from some vintage Liberty of London fabric that I've had stashed for awhile.

My sister Sarah asked me to teach her how to sew, so she too made a tank dress for her first project. I helped her with the curved portions, but she cut it out, sewed the side seams and pocket all by herself. Here is a pic of Sarah's tank. She said she may wear it as a swimsuit cover-up, which I thought a clever use.
There is an entire flickr pool dedicated to the Wikstenmade patterns. Here are a few of my favorites of the tank pattern from flickr.

Monday, February 6, 2012

#445...botanical photography

I'm enamoured with the beautiful botanical photography of  Kari Herer. This weekend, I played around with my camera and a bouquet of dendrobium orchids trying to capture their beauty in a similar style.

Thanks for the pretty flowers Sol

Friday, February 3, 2012

#444...super quick staging

Sometimes, when I am looking for items for a real estate staging project the Shopping Gods smile on me, and I find everything I need in about 30 minutes at exactly the price point that fits in my budget. Case in point.....


King Bed-in-a-Bag Set from Ross $35
Set of Toss Pillows from HomeGoods $25
Starburst Mirror over bed from HomeGoods $45