Thursday, December 30, 2010

Baby Beanies

My daughter and I took a knitting class a while ago and it really sparked something in me. I'm one of those people who always needs to feel productive, and when I watch TV, I feel like I'm wasting time. But I love watching some TV shows, and since I can knit and watch TV at the same time, it was a perfect pastime!
So I knitted a few scarves and some slippers and then, while browsing through a knitting magazine, found an opportunity to be knitting and helping little babies around the world (all while watching TV!). How productive id THAT!
So I have been knitting little caps for babies in third-world countries. I don't have anything to show the scale of these, but they are tiny - only 12 inches in circumference. I can knit 2 of them in an evening of TV watching. I have a ball mixing the colors. My daughter said I should be doing them in pastels, but I hate pastels and I figure there will be MANY people making little pastel beanies, so I am making mine in vibrant colors. I think babies need STIMULATION. It's funny - I dressed my daughter and son in vibrant, bright colors when they were little. Now my daughter wears mostly white and pastels and my son wears black. I was dressed in pastels when I was little - mostly light blue and aqua, but now I wear purple and red and orange. I guess we rebel against our childhood colors.
So I have made 8 caps now (I made another one after I took this picture).

I have until the end of February to make as many as I can.
If you are a knitter and crocheter and would like to help out as well, here's the link to get the patterns and where to send them.
So get the needles and hooks out and keep some baby's noggin warm.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Valentines at Christmas

I always hate it when the stores start putting up their Christmas decorations in October. It just seems to rush everything. BUT if you are creating something to sell during a holiday, you need to start early if you are going to have enough product. That said, I was THRILLED to find in my postbox today a Valentine's inspiration package from Cindy Caraway. She does a monthly give-away on her blog and I had won. After tearing off the outer wrappings, I found this creatively wrapped parcel.
It just screams "Promises of good things!" I pulled back the tissue to reveal a dainty little tin box. Inside was this:

Ribbons and wrappings and beads and lace and cherubs and hearts and pearls and bows and flowers. I was SO excited. I'm already musing about what to make with them. And to show you that I'm serious about getting an early start on Valentine's Day, here are some brooches I have already made.

Four down, many to go yet.
So THANK YOU Cindy for the fabulous gift of inspiration. Please check out Cindy's blog, Artful Living on the Bluff, and leave a comment and you too may win something delightful and inspiring.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Secret Santa

I haven't had a Secret Santa since I was in grade school. In the 4th grade, a boy drew my name (A boy!). I was horrified to think of what I might receive from him. But on the day of the Christmas party, I was more than pleasantly surprised. He had found a cigar box and filled it with all kinds of little treasures. A folding fan with a painting of a bird on it, paper umbrellas, marbles, a pocket mirror with little jewels on it and assorted other little trinkets that I can't remember now. It was one of my favorite gifts of all time. I felt like I was opening a small treasure chest.
Well, now, 40 some years later, I have another Secret Santa. I entered to be on the Secret Santa list at Lillyella's blog. She sent me the name of my gift recipient and I set to work making a beaded brooch for her. I put it in the mail to her last week. And then I forgot about Secret Santas until yesterday when my husband brought in the mail with a package for ME. I didn't recognize the name on the return address and when I opened it and read the accompanying card, I was still in the dark. Had someone sent me a random gift? In the package was a FABULOUS hand-folded envelope.
Intrigued, I opened the clever little beaded latch and tipped it over.

Out spilled a BEAUTIFUL bracelet made of dark olive pearls, olivine crystals and lovely carved, dark green stones.

The clasp was silver and quite elegant. I was still in a quandary as to why this person had sent me such an incredible gift when my husband said "Could it be from YOUR Secret Santa?" Of course! That was it. I realized with a little guilt that I should have waited until Christmas to open it, but I'm notoriously impatient and would have never made it that long anyway.

Here's a close-up of one end of the bracelet showing the carved beads, the pearls, crystals and Sterling
So I want to say a HUGE Thank You to Shannon from For My Sweet Daughter. This gift ranks right up there with the 4th grade gift and you have been a very good Santa.
Shannon also has an etsy shop HERE. and a blog HERE. Please visit.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Rina and Isabel

I went to an art showing tonight with my friend, Robin. Her friend, Rina, was showing her exquisite cut paper artwork. Have my eye on a piece that I'd like to buy for my livingroom. Met a very nice lady there named Isabel, who gave me the address of her website. She also had stunning artwork. So it was a very enjoyable evening with good art, new friends and great brownies that Rina's mom baked.
You can see their art at:

Saturday, December 4, 2010

A Winter Winner!

Brrrr. It's Cold Outside! I'm hoping that the torch brooch from November's Give-Away will warm the cockles of the heart for Kath at Hillside Cottage (AKA Railway Cottage) because she is the current winner! Congratulations Kath.
Sooooo, what to give for December's Give-Away? Let me rummage around in the magic chest here a moment.....Ooooohhhh, let's go with THIS one.
This brooch is comprised of a horn bead with a dragonfly etched onto it. The surrounding beads are brick red, gold and purple. A little shimmery, just like a dragonfly.
So leave a comment to be eligible to win this brooch.
Have a GREAT December Everyone!