merry christmas!

Happy holidays to all of my lovely readers, friends, and family!

This is the set of Christmas-y double-sided napkins I made for my parents for the holiday, using fabric sourced entirely from the thrift store.

Gifts are currently arriving in recipients' mailboxes, which means I can finally share them here. Stay tuned in the coming weeks for posts featuring handmade goodness!


blogger christmas swap: what i sent

I recently participated in the Blogger Christmas Swap over on the blog Pickles on Pizza. Angela, the swap's organizer, was my partner. With a $10 limit, I decided to cross-stitch something for her.


Knowing that she liked whimsical things--and that her favorite room in her house is orange, blue, and brown--I decided to cross-stitch multicolored mustaches. (It wasn't a completely random choice of subject; I was inspired by Nea's mustache necklace.)

I was happy with how the project turned out, and Angela seemed to like it too.

Happy almost Christmas!


christmas wrapping

The past few days have included lots of wrapping, photographing, and mailing (though sadly only a few of the gifts I've made will be getting to their destinations before Christmas--oops!). For some of the gifts I'm giving, I've opted to wrap them in fabric, rather than paper, and top them with handmade ribbon flowers. Little fabric bags like these are super quick and easy to make and are totally reusable.


cross-stitch love: chez-sucre-chez

(This is the fourth cross-stitch love post. Check out the other posts here, here, and here.)

A few months ago, I discovered chez-sucre-chez's Etsy shop and quickly added it to my favorites. Kimberly, the designer behind chez-sucre-chez, makes darling embroidered tea towels and cross-stitch kits (excellent gift idea!), and her cross-stitch work is simple and gorgeous. Here are a few of my favorite designs:

For more information and pretty pictures, visit chez-sucre-chez's web site.


bend-the-rules sewing swap: what i sent

A few months ago, I participated in a Bend-the-Rules Sewing Swap for a pair of pillowcases, based on a pattern found in Amy Karol's book, Bend-the-Rules Sewing

Mary Ann, the owner of the Etsy shop Rumpos (which features playscapes, totes, and household items), was my swap partner, and these are the pillowcases that I made for her.

The front of each pillowcase features a square of flowered fabric from a vintage pillowcase that I cut up and embroidered with dark blue floss.
The gray backing of each pillow is actually from the tablecloths used at my August wedding. I added yellow piping to the back flaps to tie everything together.

crafty books

In a recent blog post on BookPros[e], I listed a few of the crafty books on my need-to-read list. Here are a few others I'd like to add to my bookshelf or check out from the library:

While honeymooning in Toronto, I picked up a copy of Meg Mateo Ilasco's Craft Inc. (I really enjoyed it and found it very informative), and I would love to own a copy of the accompanying Craft Inc. Business Planner.

I love the aesthetic of the projects found in I Love Patchwork: 25 Irresistible Zakka Projects to Sew, and I would love to learn more about how to sew with linen.

The author of Subversive Cross Stitch, Julie Jackson, is a Texan (yay local crafters!), and her cross-stitch designs are hilarious, inappropriate, and totally unexpected.

I flipped through a copy of A Rainbow of Stitches while at the bookstore during lunch a few weeks ago, and realized I'd found what I'd been looking for: a reference book of modern cross-stitch designs that I'd actually like to stitch.


salty oat web cards!

I've always been a big fan of Avie Designs (I have a growing collection of the company's stationery), so when I started looking for a "business card" for this blog--to hand out to fellow crafters and to include in swap and gift packages--the Atlanta-based company was my first choice. Not only does Avie Designs do custom invitations, bookplates, and traditional business cards, but they also do web cards--mini business cards which feature only web addresses. 


I loved the simple design, reasonable price, and small size (each one is 2.68 x 1.25 inches) of the web cards, so I browsed through the available designs and selected three. I love each card and have already started including them in packages.


sewing project: napkins

As a Christmas gift for a faraway friend, I made a set of four square napkins.

Each double-sided napkin is made from a thrifted vintage sheet (I fell in love with the flower pattern) and pink cotton I had in my studio.


cross-stitch love: nea

(This is the third cross-stitch love post. Check out the first and second posts here and here.)

I've been a fan of Nea Jewelry and Wall Wear for quite a while. While honeymooning in Montreal, I had the pleasure of seeing jewelry from the Nea line at Headquarters Galerie + Boutique.  Janick is the artist behind Nea, and while I love her whimsical beaded work, it's her cross-stitch and wall wear that I totally swoon over.

Mustache Pin

Leaf Wall Wear, Vintage Metal Frame 
Puffed Heart Wall Wear

Branch Wall Wear

For more Nea eye candy, check out Janick's Flickr stream here.


tote bag love: doe-c-doe

Dear Husband, 

Pretty please?

I Heart Cross-Stitch Tote Bag by doe-c-doe



cross-stitch jewelry

Not only have I fallen in love with cross-stitch work for the wall (more cross-stitch love posts to come!), I'm also smitten with wearable cross-stitch.

On my Christmas wish list, earrings by The Pin Pals, a duo based in Montreal:

The Pin Pals also make really excellent buttons:


Heist Jewelry makes sweet needlepoint pendants (thanks for the link, Jaime Jo!):

 (my initials!)

And chicadecanela makes amazing cross-stitch earrings, rings, and necklaces:
Cross-Stitch Earrings: Paris

Cross-Stitch Ring: Rose 

Cross-Stitch Necklaces

For more eye candy, check out each designers' Flickr pool: The Pin Pals, Heist Jewelry, and chicadecanela.


calendar swap: what i received

In exchange for the calendar that I sent to my swap partner, Jennifer (for the calendar swap put together by Design Crush and i am a greedy girl), I received a lovely letterpress calendar by Delphine Press.

Here are some of my favorite months:



June and April

Come January, this calendar will be gracing the wall above my desk at work. Thanks, Jennifer!


lunch tote giveaway winner!

Thank you so, so much to everyone who entered the giveaway! I was blown away by the number of responses and I loved reading each and every comment.

Without further adieu, the winner of the lunch tote and napkin is:

Congratulations, Laura! I'll be in touch to get your address and I'll mail your package this week.

And in case anyone is interested in purchasing their own lunch tote, feel free to drop me a line (by leaving a comment on this post). I have extra fabric (and another one of those red buttons!) and would be happy to recreate it.


salty oat buttons!

I've been wanting inexpensive, washable, and easy-to-attach tags for my sewing projects, so I decided to look into having engraved buttons made. A search on Etsy quickly led me to Alex Riley. Robert is the man behind the brand, and he did an amazing job engraving the Salty Oat logo onto a mixture of buttons--for an incredibly reasonable price. I'm totally in love with the end results and can't wait to attach them to totes, quilts, and zipper pouches.

Don't forget: You have until midnight tonight to leave a comment on this post for a chance to win a lunch tote and napkin. I'll be drawing a winner tomorrow. Thank you to everyone who has commented so far!


craft riot!

Don't have plans for this weekend? Well you do now.

EtsyAustin sellers are gathering on Saturday and Sunday for Craft Riot! in East Austin. I'll be volunteering at the event (you should too, if you're interested), and I'm looking forward to checking out the work of some local crafters--and picking up a Christmas gift or two. 

P.S. Looking for the Sew Mama Sew! giveaway? Go here.