The line was started by a nice little swiss girl "straight out of the sound of music" who discovered a vintage hankie with exquisite embroidery. She realized that the embroidery was special and that work of that class is rarely found today. She became determined to bring back quality embroidery on tops that would be fashionable today and to combine those two spirits. Her current line fuses each embroidered blouse or shirt with a playfully dirty saying. She says her tops are "something mommy wouldn't wear and daddy shouldn't see," calling the line "perversion with a touch of class."
I have to admit that while I love to cook, life gets in the way of making delicious goodies. I had seen a post that gemma made that she had ordered sinfully delicious cookies from thecountrybaker over at etsy. So the other night in a fit of chocolate cravings and PMS, I ordered both a "Three Fudge Sampler" and a "Surprise Box." I came home today and there was a nice box on my porch.... I was surprised to note that even though it was 85 today, the fudge was not melted! (it was soft, but not liquid).
Soooo goood. The "Surprise Box" was filled with individually wrapped little bars, cookies, and fudge. So far I've tried two different types of cookies and some Double Dark Fudge. I can *feel* the pounds packing on...
They also offer packages for troops in service to our country, and if you don't know someone but want to help they maintain a list of troops who are more than willing to receive extra goodies.
For all of you illustration types, J.Jill is having a tshirt design contest with a pretty sweet prize of a 4 day artist's retreat and a gift certificate to their chain. They're looking for an illustration inspired by nature, and no more than six colors. If you're interested they stop taking submissions on the 28th of this month.
I was unintentionally super crafty last night. I tried to lay in bed a read a book, and fell asleep very early, somewhere around 5 o'clock. Therefore, when I woke up at 9 I was WIDE awake. What do you when you can't sleep?
So I purchased all these super cool bobby pins blanks a while back and figured I'd start playing. This particular pair are great, they're made from reproduction vintage metal buttons that I cut the shank off and polished flat. For once my dremmel wasn't dead (my boyfriend has a new fondness for it- I'm very close to buying him his own).
I also used it to drill holes and turn some fun stuff in to even more fun earrings! I made brushed copper flowers and the ubiquitous vintage Indian brass charms into even more fun earrings. I made far more than I posed in my shop to day too.
I've got a new goal, to relist or renew 5 items a day. That's $1 a day, or ~$30 a month to stay up in the listings. I think I can do it!
I do and I love it. I do hand work too, but there's something soothing and relaxing listening to the machine run. (besides you can start the machine, and sew on a second machine and be twice as productive) It can also be quite hypnotic to watch the needle jump up and down.
I buy many of my designs at the shop I work at, but I also really like being able to buy my designs individually. Unfortunately design collections can be really expensive, and as cool as they may be, if I'm not going to use them all it's just not practical. So here's my reviews of some of my favorite places to get machine embroidery files online. Some of the sites are country specific (I'm in the US) so if you have a problem let me know and I'll see if I can find you the right link.
Embroidery.com is one of my favorites for downloading both packs of designs and individual designs. They're the online vendor for Cactus Punch designs and you can buy them individually as well as the whole package. They also sell lots of smaller vendor designs, and I've never purchased anything that has stitched out poorly. Make sure you get on their mailing list, they've got amazing sales.
I also have a coupons for 5 free designs from them... We hand them out at work for people to try the site and start embroidering on their new machines! 1. Go to www.embroidery.com 2. Enter your sewprize number in the box on the upper right hand corner AFG6K8PC427J 3. You can then download the 5 designs in your choice of formats
Ann the Gran has lots of designs as well, including large names like Dakota and Vermillion Stitchery. They also have a large section of the website devoted to free designs that can be stitched on items to sell, give, or keep for yourself. The free designs vary in quality as they've been digitized by users of the site and not necessarily an individual company or a professional.
The Criswell site is full or gorgeous machine embroidered lace. They do sell through dealers as well so you may want to see if there is a store or shop near you that sells them. They're thread intensive, but are amazing once they're finished! My personal favorites are the snowflake lace and the Peacocks 2 CD.
These are some of the most elegant designs available. They've got religious designs, kids, lace, etc. They're amazing well digitized and again, stitch intensive. I have one of the butterfly CDs and it's unbelievable. They sell hard copies (CDs) and downloads.
These are a sampling of Pfaff Embroidery Designs online (often including the ones they use in their advertising campaigns). These are the FREE designs :) click on the Downloads sections, and then on "Showcase Sample Designs" for the different groups. It's a random assortment of files, all well digitized, but only available is *.VIP, *.PCS and *.DST. You can always convert them if necessary. Pfaff's home website also has a few free designs available here. The design to the right is from the Grand Elegance Collection by Pfaff (Not Free though, Sorry).
Inspira designs have been bought by VSM (which owns Pfaff, Viking, and Singer), and are now available here. They're great for kids, but not so much of it is grownup looking. They're pretty straightforward designs, few color changes, and nice.
Bernina designs are in the same quality bracket as Pfaff and Viking. They stitch amazingly and they're expensive. So even better if they're free! Bernina has an inspiration gallery with free designs located here.
This week the New York Times published an article on Leonard Nimoy that led me to spend an entire afternoon looking up his photography and reviews of his work before I realized what was happening. Now I know you're thinking you recognize the name, but you've probably never heard the name in conjunction with the words artist or photography; and before I get too far you do know the name unless you've been living under a rock. Leonard Nimoy acted in the Original Star Trek Series (with Captain Kirk/ William Shatner) and starred as the original Vulcan named Spock.
Star Trek began in 1966 and stopped filming 3 seasons later, he returned to school and worked toward a degree in photography. He didn't graduate but holds master's degree in Education and an Honorary Doctorate. His photography came to the fore front of discussion in 2002 when he published the book Sekhina.
Raised in Boston by Russian Jews, Nimoy used traditional jewish names and symbols intertwined with the female form. The word Sekhina for example is yiddish for the female side of god. The photographs themselves were of very sensual women, wrapped and draped in phylacteries which are typically only worn by Jewish men. (On a side note the famous Vulcan hand signal is of Nimoy's own design, representing the Hebrew letter "shin," the first letter in the word for God.
On a more recent note, as mentioned in the Times, Nimoy is making waves with his photography again. His new project is entitled "the Full Body Project" and makes some thought provoking statements about body size and perception of that size. The times article quotes him as saying that the series is a direct result of women to be a size 2.
One of the photographs is located at the top of this post, and a scan of the Times article is placed here to the left. Notice the Times page places the article called "Girth and Nudity: A Pictorial Mission) between two department store ads, both featuring Twiggy like models.
His new photographs are showing the at the R. Michelson Galleries in Northampton, Massachusetts through June while a larger show at the same gallery is scheduled with the release of the book of photographs from this series in November.
I found the photos in the series (you can see them here) engrossing for lack of a better word. The photos are explicit, showing large nude women in poses from famous paintings, and enjoying themselves. It's very refreshing to see that not only are these woman large, but they're visibly comfortable with their bodies. As a woman myself, it's also nice to see that the women aren't "plus sized models." They're larger than any other model I've ever seen, nude or otherwise, and they're disproportionate, some with larger hips, and others who are huge on top. There's significant variation in the women in the photographs, just like real women.
I also had to give a quick shoutout to Tonyabug over at Etsy, who made me these AWESOME daisy decals for my car in a trade. I personally think I probably got the better end of the deal, but she really likes her pendant too :)
I put them on this past Thursday since I had the car serviced Wednesday, and they washed and waxed it before I got it back. The decals came with specific instructions that the car had to be CLEAN (which it never is) so I took the opportunity and finally put them on the car. I love them!
Her shop has all sorts of other cool car decals (all hand cut from 6 year vinyl) and magnetic bumper sticker type things :) check her out!
Life has been a bit nuts recently, as evidenced by my lack of posting. I'm sitting here actively procrastinating my final exam for statistics this afternoon (whomever decided finals should be on a Saturday was EVIL)
This weekend is also the shop hop of quilting shops here in southern Louisiana! (which I'm missing most of because of said final). I did successfully complete the pattern I wrote to make this adorable children's book from the 5 Funky Monkeys fabric panel from Moda! I wrote up a pattern with lots of photographs and directions for fusible binding techniques.
For the book itself I used a coordinating fabric from the same line for the inside and back of the covers, and did a fusible binding for the edges. I 'bound' the book with eyelets and yarn and tied a cute bow on the back!
The patterns were a big hit the first day of the shop hop, we sold several which is always a happy event to know that people like your patterns. They're also available here at ShootingStar on etsy, my second shop for supplies and destashing. I'll slowly be making more of my patterns available online...
If you're at all interested in fiber arts involving yarn at all, you simply must buy have a yarn ball winder. This is the one I have and it's great... I like to buy old tacky sweaters at the salvation army and take them apart for the yarn. This gadgam-gig pulls the yarn from the sweater/scarf and winds it into a ball, without knots!
It's ready at this point to be reused and made into something else beautiful, It goes easily from a know free ball into whatever format you'd like to have your yarn in (if you're going to dye it etc.)
Life's been super busy recently, but I've been working on things for you! I'm almost finished with a tutorial on binding (several types)... it should be awesome and exciting! I'm also going to go home this afternoon and work on my blooming 9 patch :)
• Start with 7 random facts/habits about yourself • People who are tagged have to write their 7 things on their blog • Then choose another 7 people to get tagged and list their names • Don't forget to leave them a comment to tell them they have been tagged and to read your blog
1. I'm an entomologist by trade... I spend lots of time playing in the swamp and looking for little tiny weevils. I collect insects and have a whole set of boxes filled with dead bugs on pins...
2. I have three cats and two dogs, and most days my life is like a circus. There's always one pet getting into something they're not supposed too, especially with my crafting stuff. I have one cat (roxy) in particular who is very into anything shiny and small, one who loves thread (hannah) and the last one (calpernius) who wants to do nothing but find the biggest pile of stuff and push it over so she can sleep there.
3. I don't like ham and didn't eat it for years, even at family functions because my cousin and I would trade... he'd eat my ham and I'd eat his green bean casserole.
4. I pay an outrageous sum of money to get the magazine selvedge by subscription sent from the UK, and I don't feel guilty about it at all because I drool over the magazine.
5. I love perezhilton.com and read it every day regardless of the content, not because I care, just because it gives my brain a break and makes me smile.
6. Stripes make me happy.
7. I wish I were more organized... my life and house are the epitome of chaos.
I ordered more of these beautiful fairy filigree wings in both silver and gold and they make me so happy! they're all spread out on my desk waiting to be made into beautiful things! I also received some art deco inspired wings with simple classic lines that I *LOVE*. One pair or each will definitely be for me!
I though I was caught up on all of my orders, both for etsy and for bookmooch, and they I was thrown for a loop today. One of my neighbors came and knocked on my door and handed me the dame bag I left out for the post man the other day.... full of packages that had been opened and rifled. The left the books (though I'm going to have to reprint/repay for mailing them), the DVDs were in there from netflix though the envelope was gone, and some of the jewelry was there but not all. So, I'm remaking orders this evening and desperately seeking components I know I have more of somewhere...
Ugh. Why? Do you have nothing better to do than take my mail going out? come on now. Sorry I'm frustrated and venting this evening.
I'd like to give a huge thanks to Featuring Etsians (aka sewingsimple on etsy) for doing this great interview with me. She's got interviews with a bunch of other sellers up as well, and uses the etsymini feature to show everyone's items!
I love books, possibly as much as crafting supplies. I love to read, and I love to feel a book in my hands. I'd guess that almost 90% of my collection is hardback, so they live all over my house in little stacks and piles. I've recently started organizing, and trying to get my books back in some semblance of order. They *were* in subject and alphabetical order before our move, but they didn't get to the new house that way.
I've been cleaning like crazy, and I have a stack to list on my etsy supply shop. I've got lots of paper crafting books to list mostly, card making and scrapbooking. I do have a couple of fun odds and ends like a book on how to make the real-deal teddy bear. It's an amazing book, great patterns, and cool project but I've come to terms with it- that I'm never going to actually *make* a teddy bear.
I've also been listing noncrafty books on bookmooch.com or registering them with bookcrossing.com and leaving them places. They're both awesome sites, with the same theory about passing on books to others for free. Bookmooch runs on a points system, and you can import an amazon wishlist and "mooch" books as they become available. I'm getting rid of all sorts of odds and ends, and acquiring cool new books in the process. It don't totally get rid of the books, but there's less around? Does that count?