Sunday, August 24, 2014

The Bridal Shower That Pinterest and Etsy Created

Three months since my last post - where has the time gone? Well, we're in full-on wedding preparation here! My son and his lovely fiance are getting married in less than two months! We had my future daughter-in-law's bridal shower here at home last weekend. My girls, Caitlin and Gabrielle, and I had a definite look and feel we wanted for Katie's shower and Pinterest and Etsy helped us pull it off.
The bride to be. Corsage by Fleur de Lis, South Portland, ME
We wanted a small, intimate shower for her, here at our home that would take place both inside and outside. That means there were lots, and lots, and lots of home projects to be completed on top of the shower projects. Needless to say, not all of the projects were completed which is frustrating. My husband is much more laid back than I am, and he kept telling me to let it go. I finally did, about half an hour before the brunch..... The projects still need to be completed as we're having the rehearsal dinner, a pig roast as a nod to Matt's redneck ways, here at our home as well. Hopefully we'll complete them all... We also needed the weather to cooperate. Up through the night before the weather folks were calling for rain - not overcast, or sprinkles, but rain. I had a meltdown. We call our house "the shoe box". It's small, and we've packed A LOT of living into it. Could I fit 40 people inside my house for the shower? Yes, but it wouldn't be either comfortable or relaxing. We needed to be able to be outside as well. Thankfully, God and Mother Nature took our prayers to heart and we only had one brief sprinkle before the shower and one as we were cleaning up!

This greeted Katie as she walked up the front walk. It's hard to see the top hat, but it's adorable. Caitlin made these.

Matt and Katie are going with a bit of a rustic, with a little bit of glam, feel to the wedding. Purple is Katie's favorite color, green is Matt's. Sunflowers are prominent as they have special meaning for them. There was lots and lots of food, most I didn't snap pictures of because everyone tucked in as soon as it was put on the table. I'll add recipes for some of the items, perhaps in another post.
The invitation suite was purchased from Sunnyside Print and Party Shop on Etsy. They can be purchased as either PDFs or print packages. I cannot say enough good things about Amber! She is so willing to work to make your purchase exactly what you want, her turnaround time is quick. I am so, so very happy I found her. The invitations, recipe cards and thank you cards were perfect. Katie loved them. Amber has also designed the rehearsal dinner invitation and she's also going to design the labels for the wedding favors. The return address labels were purchased as a PDF from Samantha at Daisy Design Shop on Etsy. Again, a fabulous Etsy seller, so willing to make changes. The labels coordinate so well with the invitation/thank you.

Another great Etsy seller is Marie of Ichabod's Imagination. She was so great to work with. This was one of those items that I could have made myself but it was so much easier and saved so much time to purchase instead. This bunting will be used as a decoration for the rehearsal dinner, at the wedding and will be a keepsake that Matt and Katie can hang at home if they'd like. It is constructed so well. My pictures don't do it justice because there was a bit of sun shining through the back.
I staples inexpensive sheer curtain panels from Walmart to the privacy screening on our deck for a backdrop.
We made ornaments as favors for our guests and I purchased muslin bags from In The Clear on Etsy. The original bags I ordered came in the wrong size. Dana was fabulous to work with. Communication was great, she mailed out the replacements right away and sent along a return shipping label so I could mail the bags back to her. I so appreciate such great customer service, I'll definitely be back! We used a sunflower stamp and Staz-On ink to embellish the bags simply.
I also found several very sweet prints on Etsy that enhanced the theme for the day:
This print from Terra Cosmos greeted our guests as they arrived.
The You Are My Sunshine print is from Valerie McKeehan of Lily & Val. Love, love, love. I loved Valerie's prints so much I also bought one that I was going to hang in my studio, but have temporarily hung in our powder room. It fits with the beachy theme for the summer. 
There were also touches that were inspired by things I saw on Etsy and on Pinterest. 
Wired burlap ribbon, hot glued to colored jars - then wrapped with sheer coordinating ribbon. Small artificial sunflower head hot glued as accents. All items from AC Moore.
A search of "twine bottles" on Pinterest will bring up lots of versions of this project. This is the picture that caught my eye and we augmented.
The garland idea was from this blog (found through Pinterest)
The shadow M picture was interesting to take. I took it a couple of summers ago at our family camp. I was in front of Matt (on the right) hidden in his shadow to take the pic. No easy task, I'm not a tiny person. The picture on the left is just after Matt popped the question.
This little vignette was also from the same blog. The heart garland hanging from the canopy in the background was found on this blog.

This is my favorite project I think. I absolutely love it! Our neighbors had replaced their fence recently. I saw this project on Pinterest, but knew I didn't want to, couldn't afford to buy all of the frames. I used their layout for the pictures, but I printed 4x6 pics and mounted them on 5x7 pieces of black cardstock (Bazzill Basics) with a scrapbook tape runner. I painted thumbtacks black and used one on the top and one on the bottom of each picture to tack it to the fence. Love!
We had mimosas and blood Mary's as well as this punch (which isn't shown). Delish!
We made a wall monogram that isn't quite finished (the brown M will have brown sea glass glued to it)
Modified this idea
 We stamped doilies and napkins
and signs to identify food

and served everything on vintage milk glass luncheon sets
All in all, an absolutely fabulous day! Can't wait to call this woman our daughter/sister!

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Waxed Linen Jewelry Blog Hop Reveal

Well hello there! Thanks for hopping by for the reveal of the Waxed Linen Jewelry Blog Hop hosted by the lovely Diana Ptaszynski of Suburban Girl Studio. Thanks so much for hosting Diana!

Diana posted a call for interest on Facebook just after, literally, I found the following in my dining room:
(No, we have not yet fixed the floor where we knocked down a wall to enlarge our dining room.)
This is my daughter's Golden Retriever puppy Lux. It's a good thing for her she's so cute and lovable. That was a lovely spool of black waxed linen that she pilfered from my studio without my knowledge.......... So, I felt it was kismet that Diana posted about joining the hop.

Anyhoo, we've had plenty of time to complete our projects, but because my middle name is Last Minute Sally, I only figured out what I was going to create a couple of days ago so I was up 'til 2 this morning finishing. I really like it though, so that's a plus!
I made the focal several years ago. It's a tumbled glass ring (cut from a vintage bottle or vase) I picked up at The Beadin' Path by Trinket Foundry (I believe). I used it as a backless bezel and filled it with treasures I've collected at the beach - pottery shards and tiny chips of glass that I then filled with Ice Resin. Unfortunately, I had forgotten that it needs one more pour of resin to compensate for the slight angle it was sitting on when it cured to even out the dome. Sigh... Here's a tip for you though, should you even wish to embed pottery shards into resin - seal each of the pieces with either gel medium, decoupage glue or some other sealant. Quite often the color from the shards will leach out into the resin. The pieces, most often, are very, very old and they're not colorfast. I have a couple of pieces I made at the same time as this one that are ruined because of this.
The yellow crystals and double drilled quartz point are from the soup my Bead Soup partner Kelly Hosford Patterson sent to me. Yellow is a color I struggle with a bit, but they went with this focal so well. 
I then culled through my ridiculously huge collection of sea glass (just about all is craft grade) and double drilled each piece. Finally, I wove two strands of blue waxed linen around and through each piece, knotting in between and covering the knots with African metal beads. All-in-all, a successful project. I'm not gonna' lie though, a LOT of Irish Wax Linen was killed in the making of this project.....I tore it apart four times. Thankfully most of the strands are fairly long so I should be able to do something with them some day. I'm sure there's a fail-proof technique for knotting the linen between beads - it took me a few tries to find a method that worked for me.

Now, hop along and see what these other lovely folks created with waxed linen:

Saturday, May 10, 2014

8th Bead Soup Blog Party - The Reveal!

Good day to you and welcome! I'm so happy to again be a part of the wonderful blog party created by the lovely Lori Anderson. My partner for this year's swap is the INCREDIBLY talented Kelly Hosford Patterson of The Traveling SideShow and PyxeeStyx on Etsy. Kelly is so talented with so many different types of media.
She showered me with love in creating my beautiful soup. I posted about her amazing soup here and Kelly blogged about it here. Now, I am not a prolific jewelry maker. I wrestle with my creativity in ways I can't even begin to explain. I am in such awe of folks who can sit down for a few hours and create many pieces of jewelry. I can't do it. Just. Can't. I labor over each and every piece and it takes me forever. Why, I don't know but it's a fact. Sigh. I've made several pieces from my beautiful soup (and miraculously, a couple of them came together fairly quickly). I've put several of the components Kelly sent to me away until fall. We've had such a long, hard winter and spring is just ever so slightly beginning to grace us with her presence (it feels like early April here). I plan to work with my beautiful felted wool beads and fiber wire as we head toward fall. I also have a piece in progress that you'll have to check back on May 24 to see as it's for the reveal of Diana Ptaszynski's (Suburban Girl Studio) waxed linen jewelry blog hop.

First up, Follow The Sun. This necklace features the faux sunflower druzy that Kelly created, along with her hand forged, bead wrapped clasp. I LOVE these 2 pieces. I also incorporated the dragon's vein agate egg, printed wood beads and the hammered copper chain segment Kelly made.
I took one of the large washers and wire-wrapped it with the cube crystals that Kelly sent along. I also added a vintage lucite link and some vintage lucite tube beads that I collected while working at The Beadin' Path. I also created some twisted copper wire jump rings and created small sections of chain to suspend the focal from.
I also included a little hand painted sunflower bead (on a Natural Touch resin bead) that I had created some time ago. I love that I could combine my sunflower with Kelly's. I absolutely love this necklace and I'm sure I'll wear it often.
Next up are earrings made with vintage lucite tear drop hoops and some of the crystals Kelly sent me along with copper balled end headpins that I made. Light weight and casual.
This next pair of earrings pairs the same crystals (I love the color) along with the vintage lampworked leaves. I tied on short lengths of red sari silk.
This bracelet is in progress, I need to figure out what I want to do for a clasp (copper or brass/bronze?). I've used one of the large printed wood beads, honey jade rondelles, carnelian rounds, and vintage luster glass.
My second necklace includes two different vintage copper chain lengths, Kelly's collage bee treasure box pendant, her hand forged sunflower link (which I altered by adding color with Alcohol Inks), a fringe of copper chain and beads along with a bee skep connector I made. I have a dear friend who keeps bees (mmmmm is the honey delicious!), he calls them his girls. I'll think of Kelly and Jimmy when I wear this!
My final creation isn't jewelry to wear, but is very close to my heart. I have a thing for ornaments (surprising given my blog name, eh). I've recently started collecting sunflower ornaments. This is the first I've created, using the other hammered sunflower Kelly created (which I altered by adding color with Alcohol Inks) along with the polymer crow by Beady Eyed Bunny.
This has been so much fun! I still have a number of pieces in progress on my desk (it actually looks much worse than this presently):
Thank so much for stopping by. Please visit Kelly's blog to see what she created with the soup I sent to her. You can also hop along to see what the other 500 artists created (this is going to take a while!). Thanks again Lori for creating such a fun event for us to meet new people, share and create! Here's the link to Lori's post with all of the participants listed: Participant List