Saturday, February 25, 2012

Vintage Inspired Child's Apron ~It's Laundry Time!

       I have been working on the design for a new vintage inspired child's apron for my etsy shop and have had so much fun with this one.  A huge fan of the embroidered bluebird motifs used on linens in the 1930's and 40's, I have always wanted to work a pair of adorable bluebirds into one of my aprons.  I have also wanted to expand beyond cooking themed aprons and pay tribute to the washday aprons of the past.  After all, the original inspiration for my aprons was a 1930's clothespin apron.  What better way to pay tribute to this traditional style than with a washday apron for today's aspiring housekeeper.  And, if it inspires my little princess to help with the laundry-all the better!
Just a little more work on fabric choices and then my happy pie and cupcakes apron will have a new companion in my etsy shop!

Do you have any fun projects you are working on?

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Stepping Outside my Comfort Zone

Sometimes the most unexpected thing can spark a collection and in the case of my strawberries, it was their vibrant red color and the need to step out of my comfort zone.  I'm a product of Laura Ashley's well-deserved popularity in the 80's and 90's and my decorating (and clothing) had pretty much been dominated by little floral prints and soothing pastel tones for many years.  Graduating college in 1987, my first apartment was decorated with what I could afford from the Laura Ashley Home store in my neighborhood.  I coveted the bolts of ditsy floral fabrics and learned to sew out of necessity so I could make curtains and pillows when the fabrics went on sale.  Flash forward many years, and I realized my color choices in decorating were still the comfort zone choices of my younger days and that I needed to challenge myself to bring new colors into my home.  
I found this red ceramic strawberry pitcher at an antique shop in Atlanta and my new passion for red and strawberries began.  A nice jolt of color, but it still mixed well with the softer, pastel tones I had.
I have even been able to find strawberries when searching for vintage linens.  And did you guess my new favorite color combination is red and blue?  
Have you done anything to step outside your decorating comfort zone lately?


Monday, February 20, 2012


I suspect that even when my kids have grown, I will still be buying vintage children's items.  I can't resist!    There is a child hiding in all of us and mine always surfaces when I come across a pile of whimsical linens.  I was drawn to these adorable Kiddie quilt blocks from the 1950's.  Each of these energetic bunnies, bears and kittens deserves to be featured front and center on their own little pillow.  I hope I can do them justice!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Exercise Can Be Good For Your......

I know the answer is "health", but this past weekend, exercise proved to be good for my "collecting".  I was trying to make good on one of my New Year's resolutions to exercise more and went out for a short run.  As I jogged along, I passed a house that had been on the market for a number of months and the "sold" sign was finally out front, along with piles and piles of black plastic garbage bags.  Someone had been busy cleaning out the house.  As I got closer, I realized that the bags were full of little old lady stuff and my heart started beating faster.  I poked around a little only to find that everything in the bags was moldy and dirty.  It was sad to see that this ladies things must have been stored in a damp basement or garage.
As I gave up and turned to head home, I saw these 2 cute bowls perched on top of one of the bags.  They were brown with dirt, but I snatched them up anyway and brought them home to give them a good washing.  They cleaned up beautifully and I'm thrilled to have saved a little piece of this ladies life that was destined for the trash pile.  They are a nice hard plastic and will be fun to use this Summer for meals outside on the picnic table.  They look like vintage regaline bowls with their geometric designs "etched" into the plastic.
  And, I have found one more reason to keep up my jogging........

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Vintage Inspired Mini Apron Tutorial

You might remember my post about these vintage mini bottle aprons I found on ebay.  I realized they would make a quick sewing project, so made a template and tutorial to share in case you want to make your own vintage inspired little aprons to use as a wine bottle wrap or hostess gift.  I have added a front pocket for you to tuck a little note in for your host or hostess.

Supplies needed:
9"x 9" square of vintage or vintage inspired fabric
                                             36" of 1/4" wide double fold bias tape    
    Download and print off the apron template here. (once the template document opens, push the download button in the upper right portion of the screen under the words "Apron Template".  Then you should be able to print it from your computer).  To check the proportions on your print out-the apron should measure 7 1/2" from the top of the neck opening to the bottom of the skirt.

    Cut out the apron and then fold the top toward the wrong side of the fabric once (approx. 1/4"), press and then fold again (approx. 1/4").  Sew this edge.

    Sew the bias tape around the rounded bottom of the apron.
    Sew more bias tape around the upper half of the apron (overlapping the first piece of bias at the base of the armholes).  Leave a 4 3/4" loop of bias for the neck opening (continue to sew the bias together along the neck opening).
    For the front pocket, fold and press the side and bottom edges of the pocket fabric approx. 1/4" (fold 1, fold 2, fold 3 on the pocket diagram) and then fold the top edge approx. 1/2" and press (fold 4).  You end up with a small rectangle you can stitch right to the top of the apron and the top fold is deep enough that no stitching is needed across the top.

    Mod Vintage Life

    The Shabby Nest

    Monday, February 6, 2012

    And the Winner is.....

    The winner of my apron giveaway is Melanie.  She has a cute shop on Etsy featuring little needle felted animals as well as a blog you will want to visit.  Melanie will get her choice of one of the vintage aprons in my Etsy shop...
    or one of my vintage inspired children's aprons....

    My first giveaway was lots of fun.  I enjoyed reading all the wonderful comments everyone left, as well as welcoming some new followers.  I will have to do it again soon........