Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Craft Show Table Displays

vintage crocheted bracelets, wire crocheted bracelets displayed in front 

Raggedy Annies, Teddy Bears, embroidered dish towels, crocheted dish cloths displayed

Ladder yarn necklaces and scarves displayed along with vintage mirror

Large wire dress form to display my infinity knit scarves

Extra thick cowl neck scarves and other hand knit scarves on display

Had a great day at my first fall craft show in 2015!  Marian Catholic High School Band Boosters, students and faculty were wonderful!  The students were available to help both unload the van, carry all the containers into the gym and then return at the end of the show to help!  Turn out was less than previous years, but I think a lot of people were busy doing "outdoor" things since it was a gorgeous fall day and the weather was perfect.  Lots of wonderful compliments about my display and the quality of my hand-made items.  

Now to get psyched up for the next show the end of the month at Plainfield Central High School.  That show runs both Saturday and Sunday.  Information can be found by choosing the "calendar of upcoming events" link to the right.  

Hope you can visit me at one of the shows!!!  Let me know your thoughts!!!!

Monday, August 17, 2015

vintage inspired hand-crocheted bracelets


over the past months, I have become intriqued with the old-fashioned handiwork of tatting. both of my grandmothers tatted beautiful edges along their handkerchiefs, pillowcases, and collars just to name a few places.  I was fortunate to inherit my grandmother's heart-shaped wicker sewing box. inside the box contained so many things that enlightened me to her way of living in the late 1890's.  imagine my delight to find her darning needles and wooden darning egg to repair holes in socks; hundreds of loose buttons; various packets of sewing needles inside advertisement cardboard holders; steel crochet hooks and pearl cotton threads in so many colors; tatting projects that were never completed.  it was as if I was re-living her life while touching all these wonderful items.  memories of her sitting in her rocking chair darning socks and her teaching me the correct method on how to use a darning egg; the proper stitch technique to darn a sock. how I miss those hours we spent together!  

in my grandmother's memory, i have designed a bracelet using the basic items found in her sewing box:  a steel crochet hook and pearl cotton

there are so many gorgeous colors of pearl cotton threads in the market today -- not only the white or ecru that was so common in grandma's day.  the muted purples and grays make a beautiful background statement for the bracelet.  a pop of bright peach and rose colors are perfect for the crocheted flowers.  i have been using top-quality threads that are made in romania -- the colors and gorgeous!  one is prettier than the previous one! and the colors blend together so nicely for the background and flower combinations!

i will be selling these at my upcoming fall craft shows (check my "calendar of upcoming events" page link to the right for more information on where i will be!)  

i am really happy with the final product -- each one is unique!  see the pictures in my prior blog....

let me know your thoughts!!!

vintage-inspired hand crocheted bracelets

pictures of my hand-crocheted bracelets




hand-crocheted bracelet with picot edging




close up view of hand-crocheted flowers, 
leaves and button




close up of hand-crocheted flowers and leaves


full view of hand-crocheted bracelet




full view of hand-crocheted bracelet showing picot edging,
flowers, leaves, button and closure loop





Tuesday, May 26, 2015

2015 Fall Craft Shows

Hard to believe, but the fall craft shows will soon be upon us!  Below is the listing of the shows I will be participating in again this fall:
  • Plainfield Central High School
  • Carl Sandburg High School
  • Marian Catholic High School
  • Geneva High School 
The Mokena Show is the same weekend as Geneva this year, so I won't be able to participate in the Mokena Holidaze show.  Hopefully, they will be on separate weekends next year, as I enjoy both shows. 

I will be updating the "Craft Show" page on this blog as I get more info as to times/ space # / etc.  Let me know if you are aware of any other local shows that may be appropriate for my type of merchandise!

I have been busy since January trying to keep one step ahead of my inventory.  I have been using some gorgeous variegated soft and thick yarn for the infinity scarves that are one of my top sellers.  I think my total infinity scarves inventory is at a count of 30+.  I am working on a purple tone scarf right now and it is gorgeous!  Told you I've been busy!!!

Due to many requests last year, I have knitted about five dozen 100% organic cotton dish cloths (just like grandma's!), double thickness.  Some are in the French Stripe design, a Loganberry stitch, Waffle stitch, and the original diagonal stitch.  These dish cloths are indestructible!!!  And they get better with each washing!   You can't beat the price, either, at only $5 each!  I even designed labels for the dish cloths, printed on kraft cardstock, that wrap around the center of the folded dish cloths.  They look really professional and unique (of course!).  

Another popular seller are my cowl neck warmers -- my order of the thick boucle yarn and the large designed coconut shell buttons arrived.  Love the quarter-shaped moon buttons! Really make the cowls one-of-a-kind!  The yarn is also scrumptious!  I look high and low to find the perfect yarns...I am really pleased with this last order of yarn for the cowls.  

Something new I am designing this year are what I decided to call "Anthropologie Bracelets".  The bracelets combine various knitted yarns and chains --a nice combination of varied textures.  They slide onto your hand, so clasps are not needed, which is always nice!  I also attach a small charm onto the area where the chain and yarn meet to give the bracelet a "finished" touch.  I saw similar bracelets at the store selling for $185 each! 

The wooden dowels have been purchased and are ready to start making into my scarf pins.  These were also so popular last year -- I have some gorgeous beads to use as toppers on the dowels, so I am quite confident they will be big sellers again this year.  

So, as you can see, I have not been sitting around idle all winter!  I will post pictures of the finished products throughout the summer.  

Let me know your thoughts!!!  

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Invitation for my parents 70th wedding anniversary

My parents will be celebrating their 70th wedding anniversary in April.  They asked me to design the invitations for this special event.  So I went to my craft room and began to play with all my die cutting machines, papers and embellishments.  

I embossed the background printed cardstock as well as the scroll die cut.  Looked okay, but felt it needed some more texture.  So I layered some soft brown tulle netting between the background paper and the scroll. So far so good....

I reduced the 8 1/2" x 10" original wedding photo to a wallet size.  Used a soft raspberry cardstock as a mat behind their wedding picture for a pop of color.  Added die cut leaves and flowers around their wedding photograph....things were beginning to come together.  Added a small pearl in the middle of the flower...nice little touch!  

Printed their wedding date and the word "memories" in a medium brown ink on the same pearlized cardstock that I used for the scrollwork.  Attached these words to the front of the invitation.  

Everything looked really nice but I still thought something was missing.  So I wrapped the Ivory organza / satin edge ribbon around the front and thru the middle of the invitation for that final touch.  

So what do you think of the completed invitation???  (click on the pictures for a close-up view!)

I will be delivering the 20 invitations to my parents home (same house they have lived in for 62 years!) this Saturday -- hope they will like them as much as I do!  


Front of 70th wedding anniversary invitation

close up of embossed background paper with soft brown tulle and embossed scrollwork die cut

Inside verse of invitation

envelope liner matches small flowers on front of invitation