May 31, 2008

New Use for an Old Suitcase

This is a small size white vintage Samsonite Travel Case that I'm transforming into a Picnic Case.

First I selected a vintage Children's Book and cut out the pictures in it. I LOVE these pictures because they take me back to my own childhood. I so relate to the characters from the movie "Now And Then".

With MOD PODGE Gloss-Lustre by Plaid decoupage glue and a sponge type paintbrush I then began arranging the pictures onto the suitcase. Work around the edge first then towards the center. I partially glued some pictures on to decide whether to put the next picture under or over that one as I went along.

On one side I arranged the pictures to see them upright when the case is laid flat and on the other side I arranged them to be seen upright as the case is being carried.

Then when it' was completely covered I applied the first layer of sealant still using the MOD PODGE glue for that as well. The first coat is still tacky. When it's dry I'll add 3 to 4 more coats drying each layer to seal it well then I'll lightly sand the project to buff it with fine sandpaper.

So while it's drying I found this red checkered fabric and I'm debating on how to turn it into the picnic tablecloth. I may hand embroider a design onto white muslin to add to it. Some red rickrack would be a nice touch too.

The inside is slightly musty so I have bleached the inside and crumpled newspaper in it for a few days to absorb any remaining odor. I've removed the inside liner to replace it with a corresponding fabric that I've yet to pick out.

Finally I'll shop for some retro style plastic dishes to fill the case for this summer picnicking.

This is a fun recycling project sure to receive plenty of use!

Isn't it adorable?

May 22, 2008

Annual Town Yard Sale in Ripley, West Virginia


Ripley's On Sale-Believe It or Not!-Jackson County Courthouse Lawn

Every Year on the Friday and Saturday before Memorial Day

Where: Ripley, WV - West Virginia

Two day event that begins tomorrow - May 23 + 24, 2008

At the courthouse lawn you can obtain a free map to locate every yard sale in the town participating in this event.

Be sure to check out my favorite vendor
who will be set up in the courthouse lawn:

View Larger Map

May 14, 2008

Recycling a Men's Shirt into a 4th of July Dishtowel

This was a very easy project. I just used my trusty rotary cutter and cutting board to slice this never worn men's Americana shirt into 8x15" pieces and sewed them to flour sackcloth pieces that I tea stained and for a finishing touch trimmed them with some red rick rack. Voila! New upscaled dishtowels for the 4th of July.

I *Heart* Mom in Chenille

These are the pillow slips I'm still working on for my daughters.

The yellow one is all finished except for finishing the corded edging.

It took a lot of experimenting to make this very good handmade imitation of manufactured chenille fabric using my own designs.

May 11, 2008

All for a Pound of Wool

Miss Bunny Foo Foo

My family tells me that I have OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder) so this is a confession of sorts. It all began when I started seeing those adorable miniature needle felted critters on Ebay. After a few months the curiosity got the best of me and I ordered online all the makings to try out this craft.

And here came a box filled with various colors of wool roving, a needle felting prickly needle, a rectangle of foam and a single sheet of paper containing all there is to know about poking such needle into such roving without stabbing oneself in the process thanks to the foam. It was all exhorbantly expensive. To date I have yet to produce one needle felted critter.

And thus, my addiction to wool was born.

This new love led me next to going all over town to buy up men's old wool suit jackets to cut them into strips to try my hand at hand hooking primitive style rugs. This led to my buying an overhead projector, hooking frames in various sizes (lap held and on stands), a rug hook, dyes, baskets to hang this stash of wool across our ceiling beam on hooks..... need I say more? UFO's (Unfinished Objects) in progress from this endeavor: a squirrel scene rug.

And so yesterday I totally outdid myself in the OCD department. I literally went to a rabbit show in my quest to buy an English angora rabbit to begin getting my wool straight from a source and sunk a great deal of something called a tax incentive into it.

The Poser ------>

The breeder I came to buy from I was told had already left and so I ended up buying a French angora rabbit that wasn't even for sale and had just won Best of Show for more smackers than I'd planned to spend but it's all good. And of course I had to immediately, still at the show, invest in a transporting cage, water bottle, floor mat, feeding dispenser, etc. And swing by the feed store on the way home for it's special diet needs.

French angoras are easier to care for than English was the general consensus among breeders at the show. Upon further study I see that neither one are a stroll through the park to tend to but luckily we are a family of serious animal adoration and love and .... by the way Kady Jo I hereby bequeath the majority of this bunny care onto you.

Please note: I am NOT endorsing this behavior. If you have any touch of OCD at all please seek professional help.

So yes, already madly in love with Miss Bunny Foo Foo (not her registered name of course) which is a good thing as she has an expected life span of nearly a decade I am literally drooling over her soft white fur already anxiously awaiting for it to shed meaning that it's ready to hand pluck for harvesting. This occurs 3 times a year so I'm told and by the end of the year I should have one pound of angora wool roving. Meaning, I must get a mate for Foofers to have more wool!

Pink Eye

Did I mention that I happen to be 500 plus miles from home right now? That I came here by pubic transportation and will now probably end up renting a car to get home or have to pay to fly Foo Foo there?

I wonder if anyone has ever won a social security check based upon mental disability by having the caseworker read ones blog?

May 7, 2008

Our Pledge to Our Readers

Okay upon studying other people's craft blogs we hereby pledge to:

1. Never spam you to death!
2. Leave out the boring details of our personal lives. (ie - what we had for breakfast)
3. And nevah evah send our posse out to hunt you down.

May 6, 2008

Flower Pounding a Mother's Day Gift

We are still perfecting the technique of flower pounding here. When the fabric gets wet the colors bleed. Since vinegar doesn't work to set it and it's too late to pre-treat the fabric like another advised to do we are going to try painting over the design with a clear fabric medium and if that fails we'll simply make a Mother's Day card instead of a pillow so the finished item won't ever need to even be laundered.

Anyhow we're using violets and the wild strawberries little yellow flowers for our project. We ripped a white sheet into squares to fit a 14" pillow form.

You simply lay the whole flowers or individual petals down into any design you like face up onto tape then turn that over and tape it where you want to pound it into the fabric. Turn the fabric over and pound with a rubber mallet or hammer or a judge's gavel like we did until you get the result you want. Peel off the tape and scrape off any bits of flowers remaining with a butter knife, credit card or your fingernail.

We used the entire yellow flowers and single violet petals to spell out "MOM".

We'll post pictures of the end result.

And meanwhile we have several other craft projects in the works. I found an outdated sweatshirt still brightly colored with a cute transfer on it and turned it into this pillow.

The design reads:
Potion of
Wine & Roses
for Love
Take three roses: white, pink and red.
Wear them next to your heart for three days.
Steep them in wine for three days more
and strain the wine into a goblet
and give it to your hearts desire.
When he drinks, he will be forever yours.
Ancient Love Potion

We don't believe in potions and spells of course but it's an amusing thought.

To make this pillow I simply cut a square adding enough length around the design for the fringe edging. I sewed it right sides out around the design leaving room to cut the fringe. We even used a rotatary cutter to dice the remainder of the sweatshirt to use as the stuffing and only had to use a very small amount of fiberfill to make it fluffy enough and finished sewing it closed. The last step was to cut the fringe.

Voila! It was just too easy and everyone here is fighting over it.

It's soft and the perfect size for traveling. It fits behind the back for just the right amount of support. It would make another great Mother's Day gift. And besides all these usefullnesses (is that a word?) it's just too cute.

May 2, 2008

An Irish Lad & Lassie


Cheri and I, best friends, grew up together. We married best friends back in the 80's and then I ended up moving away for many years. I've lived in Florida, Pennsylvania and Tennessee since we gave our hearts to those boys but we always remained close no matter how many miles were between us. Now we are reunited as I've moved back to our hometown here in West Virginia and we're living right next door to one another!

Journey with us on our mission to empower women through entrepreneurship with special attention to crafting and marketing vintage and collectible items. We hope our Posse grows to philanthropist level so feel free to join us!

On this blog we will share vintage patterns, recycle craft ideas and write about our adventures along the way.

We make heirloom quality items for our daughter's and granddaughter's hope chests and gifts for our families and friends and we make things to sell. Right now we are working on our first craft booklet together. An exciting endeavor! We've got so many crafting ideas we could never in 7 lifetimes major in them all so we've finally decided to unlock them into print for others to enjoy.

We're going to take you back in time to the 50's when kitchens were filled with hand embroidered dishtowels and potholders in whimsical designs, teach you how to make your own chenille fabric and share old vintage patterns as well from our treasure trove libraries.

So let's begin!

This heirloom pillowcase pair with an Irish theme I made for my March born and of true Irish descent granddaughter's hope chest. Here they are swaying in the April breeze on our clothesline to dry before being stored away for the next several years.

Cheri and I share the same backyard and clothesline!

I found the Lad and Lassie designs in old Workbasket magazines from seperate years of the 50's.

Once I found them nothing else would do for this project.

The delicate lace edging that looks like clovers I crocheted myself also from a very very old pattern that traces back to Greece.

~ Carol

Coming up next.... A special Mother's Day Card using a technique called Flower Pounding.