November 29, 2010

Upcycle wedding cake toppers

Like everyone else, I completely fell in love with the Ann Wood birds… so cute! So much personality!! So… one time use only?! I ended up making my own set of birds for our wedding cake – it was so much fun to add the personal touch whenever I could to the wedding day! After the cake was gobbled and the tables were cleared away, the Dan-bird and Patty-bird took up residence in an Ikea lantern perched on top of my grandmother’s hutch in our bedroom.

Fast forward six months… yesterday as we were setting up for Christmas, I pulled out all of our leftover wedding things (overstock on boutonnieres, twelve white birdhouses, a bag full of little white pearl clusters, and the Dan-&-Patty-birds…) All perfect for trimming the tree!

Voila! Dan and Patty bird are happily perched at the top of the tree, presiding over the quite visible reused birdhouses and the harder to see pearl clusters and boutonnieres. A lovely tree, and a fun way to treasure and remember our wedding day!

November 9, 2010

Dream jobs… Blue Gardenia moves out to the country

Anyone in love with vintage fashion already knows all about Blue Gardenia – web destination for lovely patterns spanning the decades! And pretty much everyone who loves sewing is completely addicted to to the Sewing Spaces series over at The Blue Gardenia learns to sow her blossoms, blog-home of Denise, owner of Blue Gardenia. But! Did you know that Blue Gardenia has had a web presence since 1996?? Her WEBSITE spans decades! Here’s a story that’ll speak to anyone who’s thought of moving to (or, back to) a small town…

Tell us about your business…

Hubby and I have a website that sells vintage sewing patterns and costume jewelry.


[Is it just me, or does this pattern have a total Sencha vibe? Find it in the 30’s section on Blue Gardenia!]

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October 29, 2010

Dream Jobs. The Cupcake Goddess finds her focus on Etsy.

All right everyone! For the next dream job post, I asked Sunni, author of the blog The Cupcake Goddess, to share a little bit about herself and her adventures as an Etsy shop owner. I am completely blown away by what she had to share. It’s so exactly why I started this series. Smart women sharing how they took something they love to the next level. And with that, here’s Sunni!

[The Cupcake Goddess]

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October 22, 2010

Dream Jobs. Sewtropolis, a sewing studio.

Here’s the next installment in my ‘dream jobs’ series. Meet Nikol, owner of Sewtropolis, a sewing studio in Minneapolis, Minnesota, as she shares how she opened the doors of her very own shop! Can I get a round of applause for a single mom opening up a boutique fabric studio in the middle of an economic downturn! Now that is a dream, indeed! Also, you will sigh with delight over her further plans for world domination. Or rather, a cozy little Victorian sewing retreat** on the shores of a lake in the city. We have lots of them here in Minneapolis (lakes, not sewing retreats), and they are all beautiful, as is Nikol.

[these cute pompoms are just one of the treasures at Sewtropolis]

Without further ado, here’s Nikol…

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October 14, 2010

Dream Jobs. Inaugural post, stay-at-home edition.

This is the first of a series of posts that I’m calling ‘dream jobs’, but could just as easily be called ‘how’d she do that?’. A quick series of questions for women (perhaps men, my antique-buying neighbor comes to mind…) who took a hobby, passion or quirky idea and made it into a business, way of life or just a little egg money. If you (or someone you know) is rolling in it from your Etsy shop, quit your job as a bank teller to join a rock-n-roll band or achieved the nirvana of owning a goat, let me know! I want to know how you did that! Extra credit for previous, mainstream careers-left-behind, but those who followed their passion from an early age and never dipped a toe into the mindless corporate drone arena will be grudgingly admitted and resented for such clarity of mind.

And with that, we’ll visit our first ‘how’d she do that’, ME! My story is boring, and is the story of the year (laid off, stayed at home, figured out my way around a sewing machine), but over the past two and a half years of being a stay-at-home hound mom, I’ve found a lot of people are jealous, a lot of previous stay-at-homers say don’t go back to the office world and a lot of in the officers can’t understand how I am not completely bored (I know, right?) so it seems somewhat pertinent. Plus, I am very accessible…

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[Our backyard garden. A 2010 project]

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