A Delightful Pair
I found an ensemble of six porcelain figures resting on the shelf at Goodwill amongst the clutter. These elegant figures looked so completely out of place in amongst the tat that only the coldest of hearts would not be moved by their reduced circumstances, for surely they had been members of a beloved collection of some dear lady who had crossed over to the great beyond. Once laying eyes upon them I knew it was my duty to perform a rescue and so it was that after meticulous inspection I chose two of the six to bring home. It was indeed a hard decision, but I think these two make a particularly delightful pair. I especially like the little bird on the lady’s dress and the gentleman kicking up his heel. So lovely!
Dressing A Table
I went to the beach yesterday to cool off from the heatwave we’ve been experiencing. It was a lovely day with 70 degree weather and a gentle breeze. On the way home I stopped into the local thrift store in Lincoln City and found this lovely vase with a bird motif, the perfect container for green gladiolus which are currently in season. They make quite a statement!
Also on the table you will see a set of candlesticks which look possibly Scandinavian in design and a large platter which were also “finds” along the way. They are atop a paisley print table runner I made to compliment my Blue Italian Spode dinnerware.
I have started a new section of my blog that is for sharing my penchant for things blue and white. I hope you will enjoy the treasures I find as I comb various thrift stores looking for interesting and unique items to add to my growing collection.
Calla Lilies in Blue and White Vase
Bringing Beauty Into Your World
Table linens are a simple sewing project that are well worth the effort. These small pieces of fabric artfully arranged add pop, sizzle, glamour, elegance and just plain fun to an otherwise ho-hum table.
They are quick and easy to make and the choices are as endless as the selections at the fabric store. So have fun and be boldly creative!
Begin by cutting out a large square. Determine the width of the hem and miter the corners to suit. My favorite size is 21″ x 21″. To create the mitered corner remove 3 1/4″.
Turn under 1/4″ all around the perimeter of the square as shown below.
Bring folded edges together at mitered edge and stitch a 1/4″ seam.
Clip threads and trim corner to stitching line to ensure a crisp point.
Press open and complete on each of the four corners.
Turn each corner and carefully press hem into place.
Stitch hem into place. You may wish to decrease stitch length for added strength at the corner seam lines. Once stitched, your napkins is completed.
We’ve all had the experience of purchasing a piece of fabric that we absolutely loved and held it back for the perfect project only to later discover that we kept it too long, so long in fact that our fickle affections faded; what was once appealing had grown tiresome and out of favor. And then… there are other pieces that we hold onto that we never seem to grow tired of. That is the case with the French Country piece used for the table runner in the background of this photo. I purchased it at Daisy Kingdom in NW Portland shortly before the company went out of business in 2004. I loved it then and still adore it. It reminds me of the patterns you see on the inside lining of old trunks from bygone eras.
Blue and white is another classic color combination that never seems to go out of style; it’s a favorite of mine. I have four dinner plates of Italian Blue Spode as a base to build upon. I am slowly collecting additional pieces all in blue and white coordinated patterns for a “shabby chic”table for eight. It’s fun and challenging, because not just any blue and white will due… it’s a balancing act of style, pattern and color all coming together in a unique and pleasing way. This is my first setting. The dinner plate is English Spode and the salad plate is by Gibson of Goodwill. The napkin is made of delicate cotton voile made my moi, of course. 🙂
What do you think?
While shopping during the Christmas season, I came across some decorative accent towels that inspired me to try making some of my own. The thing I like most about this type of project is that they are simple to sew and offer a myriad of opportunities to use up scraps of fabric and trim in unlimited creative ways. They can be as elaborate or as simple as you want to make them and are easily picked up or set aside to work on later. I find this a good fit for my creative outlet during this very busy period of my life.
Paris in Spring
A Pleated Bedskirt
I made the quilted twin-sized coverlet several years ago; I had additional fabric for a bedskirt, but never got around to making it. I don’t much care for the ruffled look of most bedskirts preferring the softly tailored look of simple pleating.
I had everything I needed to complete this project on hand, which was very nice, because it was cold and gray yesterday and I really didn’t want to go out. I just happened to have a roll of drapery lining which I used for adding structure to the skirt along with providing a nice finished look on the underside. I think it looks great and hides the storage boxes under the bed very nicely indeed.
Tigger looks quite pleased with his new situation.
Circles, Circles, Circles
I recently read an article in a quilting magazine that said circles are popular! With that, I decided to have a go at circle making to see what the appeal was. I have lots of fabric scraps left over from various art projects (Chieko Mamba) which I used for this project. On the surface this type of work seems too simple to be very interesting, but I was a surprised to learn there is more to putting the fabrics together in a pleasing way than I thought.
First I made a 7″ x 7″ square and then applied the circle design. I cut a 9″ x 9″ square of contrasting fabric as a back which would leave 1″ on all sides to fold up for a binding. I sandwiched a piece of batting in between the front and back and stitched into place. Below are the results… nice, but nothing to get too excited about. I knew what I had to do… make an appointment with Dr. PM.
Here is what the original looks like after going bananas with the PicMaster... who just happens to be my new BFF!
It could be an Italian mosaic or French Country curtains or whatever…
Blue Serengeti framed miniature
Actually, this does get me excited; I am so intrigued by the endless possibilities of photo-editing… it’s just amazing what can be done with an original image to make it more interesting or just different for the sake of being different. I’ve added a gallery of miniatures at RemnantWorks where customers can choose a design and then have it printed in any color that suits their decor. What a great option to provide!
I saw a great blog entry by Bleak Midwinter on a table runner and pillows. It inspired me to make more pillows, but sadly I have too many pillows already. Here are a few that I particularly like. I have a peculiar habit of giving them each names, like they are children. As you can see, I love braided tassels and exquisite trims. These are just a few of my favorites. Enjoy!
I made a pillow today. I had some leftover pieces of fabric with an adorable Chinese toile pattern on it that is perfect for a pillow front. I shopped for something to complement the back and came up with a nice stripe in French blues… just perfect with this toile.
Today I will walk you through the steps in making an easy decorative pillow. I like to put zippers in my pillow coverings so that they can be cleaned and/or easily changed out so that I can re-use the pillow form. I prefer feather pillows, and since they are a little more expensive than form inserts or polyester fiberfill, I like to recycle them from season to season and pillow to pillow. Once you start making your own pillows, you’ll never bother with the cheesy things you find at the store that are stuffed with… God only knows what and from where.
1) I began with the two panels of fabric and serged around the edges to protect them from fraying.
2) I searched through my zippers to find one that would do. Zippers don’t have to match perfectly, because if they’re put in properly they won’t show; of course, they should be close to the background color in the fabric or tastefully coordinated. Then I placed the zipper centering it between the two side seams at the bottom seam line.
3) I stitched the zipper in place using the placket insertion method. I like this method best, because it creates nice coverage for the zipper teeth. invisible zippers are also nice in pillows, but I didn’t have one that matched, so I improvised by using an alternative method.
4) Once the zipper application was completed, I stitched the other three seams of the pillow making sure to leave enough of the zipper open so that I would be able to turn the pillow inside out later.
5) Once all the remaining seams were stitched I trimmed the corners, and then turned the pillow right side out.
6) I pressed the pillow shaping it and making sure the corners were completely turned out to a soft point.
7) Then I placed pillow insert into pillow cover. I smooshed the insert corners into place to ensure the corners were filled out.
8) Voila! As quick as a wink I had a beautiful decorator pillow ready to use or give as a gift.