weekend blur

This past weekend was an absolute blur. On Friday I started to complain about all the responsibilities I had for the weekend…even to the point of whining on facebook (I know, I became one of those people). But not long after I did my whining status it hit me like a brick: I can either face this weekend’s obligations with dread and worry and leaded feet OR I can take each event as it comes and look for all the graces. And wow! What a difference it made in the end.

One of the biggest things I had this weekend was a craft market. There were many things about this market that were causing me to worry, the biggest one being that it was indoors. I’ve never set up for an indoor market and I really was just overwhelmed with how to make it all work in this smaller space versus a 10×10 tent.

Craft market dec 2013

But every moment of this market was full of so many graces. After hours and hours of rain and more to come, the moment we had to unload it stopped. My booth space gave me plenty of extra room for me to breathe and spread out with good “neighbors”. And it doesn’t fail that every market I’ve done I have absolutely hated the first hour…there are aspects of what I’ve done this year with daisyeyes that have been such a blessing to me, but have pushed me WAAAAAY far out of my comfort zone…I came away surpassing my goal by a landslide. It was a huge blessing in the end. So, so many graces piled upon.

We enjoyed an amazing company party with my husband’s job. I will never be able to reconcile the blessings and generosity of the people that my husband works for. It truly is a gift to be part of their working family.

And yesterday we enjoyed celebrating my daughter’s early 7th birthday.

woodlandbirthday

woodlandbirthday

woodlandbirthday

woodlandbirthday

woodlandbirthday

It was so fun to decorate the house a little and watch some little girls use a needle and thread for the first time! Absolute joy (and a little craziness too!)

We finished out our weekend enjoying some time with the leaders of our church family. It has been amazing to my husband and I how quickly these people have become like family to us.

In the end, this entire weekend filled with parties and responsibilities was a huge reminder to me in how my perspective makes all the difference. I can look at each day as a gift and search for His graces or I can put my head down and get through it. But there are so many things I miss when I don’t keep my eyes open and head up!

guinea pig day

One of my goals for 2014 is to launch something that has been building in my mind and heart for the past 2 years. While I’ve been puttering around with ideas and a website for the past few months, I knew that one thing that had to happen before the end of 2013 was a sewing practice day. There was no way I could start this home-based or brick and mortar sewing school without a little guinea pig action.

I invited some friend’s children and set up three groups to work through and labeled it “guinea pig sewing day.”

Sewing day 2013

The first two groups were made up of six to 9 year olds. Each of these groups worked through a pillowcase project.

Sewing day 2013

Sewing day 2013

These girls worked on some hand sewing and then at the end of class had the chance to sew a few straight seams on the sewing machine. Clearly this was the highlight of the day.

Sewing day 2013

Overall it was a great experience to work through this project with two very different groups. I was able to see where the hiccups would be and where I would need to change and adapt some different parts of the process.

Sewing day 2013

It gave me a good idea of what it takes to prep for these groups and also how long it might take for a group of 3-6 to get through a project.

Sewing day 2013

And even more it let me know how much I could handle on my own!

The last group of the day was made up of a few middle school girls and a lovely high school freshman. They were hilarious and so much fun to work with and truly made me remember why I taught middle school for all those years!

Sewing day 2013

I had both machines set up for their project and it was so much fun to see them working. This group put together totebags from fabric pieces that I had pre-cut.

Sewing day 2013
I just love this picture and had to include it!

Sewing day 2013

These girls did such a great job and we had so much fun! It was an super fun way to end a whirlwind of a day.

Overall, it truly confirmed in my heart that this is the direction I want to go next year. While I long to keep going with daisyeyes and etsy in some capacity, I do know that my focus is going to change some. Interested in finding out more? Check out the new website for more information and more pictures…and check back often because it’s a work in progress and changing all the time! The launch date is hopefully somewhere around February 2014.

party planning: woodland style

I used to go crazy with my kiddos birthday parties, but in the years past I’ve really slacked off. This year, I’m getting back into my old groove and having so much fun planning! It helps that I’m finally planning a little girl party, we are doing a theme that I love and I’m also using some activities as a try out for my dreams to come.

decorcollageThe decor plan

We are doing a woodland themed party and I found these awesome invitations at Bunglehouse Designs and I just love how they turned out! I don’t have to mail any of these invitations, so we are going to package them in these cute yellow envelopes I found on etsy. I pinned this cute little “welcome friends” sign a while back and I’m thinking of making a little bit larger version to hang on our front door…more than likely out of felt (go figure). I found this great fat quarter bundle of fabric called Bluebird Park by mono and I think I’m going to make a pennant banner for a little decoration. The long term plan is to paint my chicks bedroom close to this turquoise color so it will make a great addition to her room after the party. I also pinned this owl lantern and I’m hoping I can get my hands on some cheap party lanterns and make a few to hang around the house.

 

activitiescollageThe activity plan

Another idea I pinned was making these great little tree necklaces. I found a seller on etsy and this will be our opening activity for while we are waiting for all the girls to show up. I’m hoping to find some woodland themed rub on stickers to use. After a little dance party, we will make some woodland themed hoops. I’m planning on cutting out each girl’s initials and a mix of flowers and woodland creatures out of felt and then each girl will learn how to stitch them down. They will each leave with a finished 5 inch hoop with a little green twine for hanging.

food CollageThe food plan

The minute I saw this tree stump cake I knew that was the one I was going to do. I’m planning on making some little felt toppers much like this seller on etsy. I love these little acorn cookies and some other food ideas I am tossing around are: chocolate covered pretzels, trail mix, fruit flower kabobs, regular pretzels and/or teddy graham bears. The party is in the middle of the afternoon, so I don’t feel the need to have this huge smorgasbord, but I would love to have a variety of some snacky foods for those that aren’t crazy about cake.

I’m not planning on doing any major party favors…it’s a crafting sort of party so each guest is already leaving with a necklace and a hoop, but I do love these little s’more bags so I’m thinking we might at least do these as a final thank you for coming.

So, there you have it. The pictorial plan for the chick’s birthday coming so very soon!

product placement

Here’s an update on what I’ve been busy with these last few weeks…

A set of Mo Willem’s pigeon themed items…

Mo Willems Pigeon set

ornaments for your tree (or your teacher’s tree!)
Mo Willems Pigeon embroidered ornament set

hoops for your wall

Mo Willems Pigeon embroidered hoops set

clutches (and introducing a new smaller size)

Mo Willems Pigeon clutches set

custom onesies for a gift order

baby onesies: flower w/name

new packaging for my advent calendar/christmas countdown sets

advent set 2013 packaging

color your tree with an initial for everyone in your family

felt letter ornaments

part one of a set of embroidered moleskin journals

embroidered moleskin journals

peace-hope-joy-love ornament set

Felt Christmas hoop ornament set

Most of these items are only available locally. I will be at the Maryville Farmer’s Market Holly Days tomorrow morning from 9-2 and all of these items will be available there. It is part of the Christmas open house for the town of Maryville. All the local shops are running specials all day.

And then I will be at the Christmas Fair at Fellowship Church in Knoxville in early December. If you aren’t local and see something you can’t get in the shop, just email me or join my facebook page and we can figure out how to get the perfect gift to you!

a little chemistry experiment

A while back I was spending some time “etsy-gazing” and came across this amazing embroiderer who had taken a photograph, printed it on fabric and them embellished it with embroidery. It was the coolest thing and I added it to my long list of “things I want to try.”

I looked into the materials needed to try this out and finally had a chance to order them and tried them out this weekend. I was pretty hesitant to try something like this and just kept crossing my fingers that it would work!

printing on fabric experiement

I ordered the solutions from dharma trading company after doing a little research online. They aren’t cheap and honestly you use a ton of the Bubble Jet Set. One thing I did learn is that if I’m going to keep on doing this, it’s best to do a fairly large size lot of items instead of just a couple to make it really worthwhile. I digress.

Overall it was pretty simple. After cutting your fabric (I used 100 percent cotton muslin) to a little smaller than a sheet of paper, you pour the Bubble Jet Set 2000 into a container and and let the fabric soak for 5 minutes. After soaking, you take it out and let it hang dry. After it dries, you iron freezer paper onto the back side of the fabric and then load it into your printer. Then, after printing let it sit for at least 30 minutes before you wash it in the Rinse. Let it hang dry again and then peel off the freezer paper and voila!

printing on fabric experiment

I made labels to stitch onto the backs of my embroideries and then printed a couple of photos I am planning on embroidering onto. Easy peasy!

A facebook fan asked me about the washability of these after printing and I don’t know. I wasn’t planning on using these labels for items that would be washed, but it’s something that I plan on looking into.

I call this first chemistry experiment a success!! Now on to tie-dying a few shirts for the kiddos…

summer 2013 wrap up

It may still be crazy hot outside and the calendar might still read July, but summer has come and gone for us. Our schools go “year round” essentially, which means we have a shorter summer break but longer breaks during the year. We love it and both my kiddos were excited to head back to school.

We didn’t do hardly anything on our science of summer list. These few weeks off went by like a hurricane and before I knew it I was standing in the library at school during open house! But we did do a few things that were pretty fun and broke up the monotony of the crazy rainy summer we had.

On one particularly dreary and boring day, the kids set up a nerf gun shooting range. Using some boxes, ping pong balls and golf tees they had fun trying to shoot all the balls down.

nerf gun range

I will admit this was a pretty messy activity that was kind of short lived. But they did enjoy it while it lasted.

nerf gun range

 

One day my son was busy doing something else so the chick and I decided to make a box puppet theater. The only box I had laying around that would work was this Priority Shipping box from the post office. It’s kind of flat so you don’t have a ton of room to move around in it, but honestly it worked out great and doesn’t take up of ton of space either!

box puppet theater

We cut a hole in the top part of the box for the flap to lift up to make the name for the theater. I had a dowel rod laying around that we used for the curtain to hang on. The curtain I just cut out of some scraps with pinking shears and just quickly stitched a seam across the top for it to slide on.

box puppet theater in use

The back has a hole in the bottom for you to stick your puppets up through. We just printed out some coloring pages of specific animals the chick wanted onto cardstock. She colored them and we collected some sticks from outside (Popsicle sticks would work better, but alas couldn’t find any) to make holders for them.

box puppet theater

We used construction paper to decorate the front and make a backdrop inside. All pretty simple, but fun!

 

The other thing I did this summer that was on my personal list was making bug spray.

DIY bug spray

I combined a couple of recipes I had seen floating around Pinterest and ordered some essential oils and put it all together. Here’s the recipe I put together:

50/50 mix of distilled water and witch hazel
30-40 drops of citronella oil
20ish drops of lemongrass oil
10ish drops of tea tree oil
few drops of glycerin

Overall it works pretty well. You can’t let it sit though and then use it again. I really think you have to mix it up fresh. I love how it smells and I love how cold it feels going on. The husband gave up on it though and went and bought the “real stuff” just because he is like a mosquito magnet.

I also made some citronella “candles” using mason jars, water, floating candles and some citronella and lemongrass oil. They worked pretty good too and man oh man they smell great!

happy fourth of july!!

So, yesterday I decided that I needed to do a craft project. No worries about the fact that we were hosting 20 plus people for a block party that night. No, I needed to make a wreath.

Fourth of July wreath and front door

Here’s a glimpse at my festive front door! The pennant banner was out of my stock of these felt fourth of July banners that have been a hit in the shop! I’ve had these listed in more treasuries than I could have ever imagined. All I need now is some little flags for my pots on the front porch.

The wreath was the result of a huge stash of felt scraps I have hanging around my house!

Fourth of July wreath and front door

I wrapped a wreath form with strips of red and blue felt. Then I used my fun little Sizzix cutter to cut out some white flowers and then added some blue and red hand cut ones to top it off.

Fourth of July wreath and front door

The stars were out of my stash of Sizzix stars that were too small for my banners.

All in all, I’m crazy excited about it. I think it turned out so cute and can’t wait to make some more festive wreaths.

Happy Fourth everyone!

Random shots

I’ve slowly been working on our master bathroom. Here’s the before post and here is a sneak peek after I exchanged a few mirrors in the house and finally got it painted.

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I’m learning the hard way that it’s all about the right tools. Being married to a carpenter, woodworking handyman you think I would just know this but alas I don’t. Today I was introduced to the Clover version of a water soluble tracing pen for embroidery. It. Is. The. Bomb. Like totally amazing; I don’t know where this pen has been all my life kind of amazing. Go buy one fast. I got mine at Michaels and I think I’m going to go buy some more.

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This silly wedding cake topper is stretching my brain cells. Nothing like messing with a few hours worth of embroidery and hoping that you can salvage something out of it. This is where I’m at with it as of today. Still not a finished product. Ugg.

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My yoga teacher has this sticky note in her bathroom that drives me crazy. It points people to the trash can where people should throw their reusable drying washcloths. Every time I sit in there doing my business I have this great embroidery design in my head. Yesterday I finally sat down and made it. I love it.

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Sometimes the color requests just don’t work out and we go back to the drawing board. This was the case for this turquoise version of the THINK embroidery. Look for it this summer at the local farmer’s market and maybe an option on etsy soon.

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That’s about it for right now. I’ve been crazy busy this month with orders…more in a month than I’ve ever had before. I’m truly blessed and every day humbled by how the Lord has gifted me with the ability to follow a dream.

fantastic friday {1.25.13}

newfantasticfridaybutton

Happy Friday! I missed last week after the big flood in our house and today I’m crossing my fingers we don’t lose power as we sit under an ice storm. That said, it’s a great day to curl up and check out some great links from this week!

great FABRIC: This is a newer blog to me, but I’ve long had a fascination with all Japanese sewing goodness. If I ever won the lottery I think I would buy up all the Japanese prints I could get my hands on. This post runs through some super cute Kokko syle fabric. The ballerina print is soooooooo cute! I wish I could get my hands on some.

to whet your APPETITE: One of the new things on my monthly menu in February are taquitos. My family loves Mexican food and some months we wear out the quesidilla. I’ve pinned at least 3 different versions: one here, here and here. We’ll see which one ends up being the winner.

be NEAT (as in organized): This is a fabulous post on how to organize and print your digital photos. My nemesis.

a TUTORIAL to do: Here is a great tutorial for making a nightgown from two t-shirts. Super cute!

becoming more AWARE: Valentine’s Day is coming up and in my desire to be more engaged and aware of celebrating and creating memories we have a couple of things up our sleeves. First, we’ll make our valentines for school as tradition, but I love this idea for hanging hearts all through the month on bedroom doors and we’ll also be doing a year of mommy and daddy dates too. More on that later in February!

something to SEW: I love the O+S badminton skort pattern, but this idea for changing the shorts part into a layered skirt is genious.

to TRIM my house with: Love this XO wreath for the front door.

ILLUSTRATION to stitch: I’m tossing around stitching up some flour sack towels for the shop. These three (one, two, three) from Anthropologie are giving me some great inspiration!

CUTE: I’m dreaming of my new studio space…maybe something along these lines in the future?

Have a happy weekend!!!