Vintage finds and retro handmade--a sweet mix I know you'll love.

This is my blog. To visit my stores, click the Artfire, eCrater, or Etsy links above, or the product images on the right column of the screen.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Here's Some Tax Relief You Can Use...a Coupon!

Last week, I worked on taxes any time I had a break from my other obligations, and now, at last...

I'm finished!

I'm celebrating by offering a 20% off coupon in my Artfire and Etsy stores. Just use coupon code:


It's good through the end of April, and works on anything over $7!

If you have your eye on something in my eCrater store and would like the discount, you'll have to write to me, because that store doesn't have coupon capability. I'll have to mark it down manually for you...but I'd be happy to do that!
So, after shaking off the bookkeeping brain-stupor, I have started photographing and listing things again. My plan is to try to get something new into the store on a daily basis, so stay tuned!

Here is my newest listing, from today. This scarf has a minimalist, modern art kind of print, with primary color blocks and boxes on a tan  background. Follow the link to see it flat. If you like it, it's eligible for the coupon code. Just sayin'...

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Defiant, Persistent Spring!

This has possibly been one of the most brutal winters in several decades in the US. In fact, even as I write this, the air outside my window is below freezing, and there is snow on the ground. My area usually gets rain in March, and lots of wind, so what is with this weather?

Nevertheless, spring is coming! The robins are back in my neighborhood, the crocuses have sprouted, and I keep seeing flocks of geese flying north again. I am so ready for those warmer temperatures and greener landscapes!

I've been restocking my stores this week with bright and pastel colors, for those desperate for some sunshine and flowers. I know how you feel!

I listed this beautiful floral chiffon scarf a few weeks ago. It has already been favorited by 25 people on Etsy and pinned a few times on Pinterest--good signs I won't have it for long!
I recently acquired several solid colored chiffon scarves in spring colors. Chiffon is breezy for the warmer temps, and transitions well into the summer and fall. This light olive green scarf is very long and rectangular, with opaque stripes and sheer panels that virtually disappear against your skin! Makes me think of erin go bragh and St. Patrick's Day, as well.
This little  Royal Grafton demitasse cup and saucer will brighten your day! Could you believe it dates to the late 1950s? I love that orange color on the cup.
If you're still not cheered, maybe the little boy on this plaque can manage it (or his little mouse and bird friends).
Or perhaps the little boy on this plaque can brighten up your nursery room, when the spring rain comes.
This little duck figurine will put you in a good mood about spring rain, as well.
 With spring rains comes Easter, and new baby animals! I have some real wild bunnies living in my back yard, but this pink lead crystal one is pretty cute, too.
Of course, all of this spring talk makes me think of Bambi. Isn't this all-white Art Deco doe and fawn statue pretty? It is from Gallery Originals, which as it turns out, is a limited-edition division of Avon products.
If all of this spring talk has got you hankering for some green leaves and flowers, you could consider growing some, indoors, in a planter like this gorgeous Hull pheasant planter!

Well, that's enough for today. I need to get back to listing some more springtime beauties...after all, I hear another snowstorm is moving into my area today...

Monday, February 10, 2014

I'm Writing Just to Say Hello...

Although social letter writing has declined in recent years, it is still a special thing to dig through a pile of envelopes addressed to "current resident" and find one personally written to you!  It is still a fairly inexpensive bit of fun in a world where cheap, clean fun is a rare commodity, and there is a certain rawness and genuineness to the handwritten note that you can't find in emails and texts.

If you are thinking of taking up letter writing in 2014, I have vintage stationery you can use, covering every topic from birthdays and special congratulations to thinking of you cards and get well soon notes.
Here are some cute cards, mostly birthday themed, for the girlie girls you might know. These are from the 60s or 70s.
This set has a lot more variety of messages, including "thinking of you" type cards. They aren't officially marked as such, but they definitely are inspired by the Holly Hobbie art style of the 70s and 80s. Find them here.
For the more grownup recipients, here are some backyard bird cards you might enjoy.
 The bird portrayed on this set of block print cards is a North American Loon, and these cards are blank inside, so you can figure out what you want to say with them. These are hand-printed cards by famous artist Gwen Frostic. They are still wrapped up in their original packaging, with matching envelopes.
Write home to wish Mama a happy birthday with this set of 5 floral birthday cards from the 50s, 60s, and early 70s. They would also make a pretty cool shadow box display.

Finally, if you're really interested in letter writing the old-fashioned way, I have a cool set of 50s/60s era bamboo dip pens you can use. Just buy an inexpensive pot of ink at your local craft store and dip away. It's fun!

I have quite a few sets of vintage stationery not represented here, but you can find them by following the links throughout this post!


Here is an interesting link from the Smithsonian National Postal Museum about the history of letter writing in the United States.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

For the Thrifty Sewers Among Us

Many people these days have developed a taste for vintage fashions and perhaps enjoy mixing and matching the old with the new.  Some of the old fashions  are "current" again, like skinny jeans, bow-necked blouses, or sheath dresses. The casual observer might not even realize that an article of clothing is from another time!

The main difficulty I encounter when I look for vintage clothing is a problem with fit, and I think that's an issue for a whole lot of people. The sleeves are too loose, the bustline or chest is too full, the waist is too long, etc. We could alter the old garments, or we could sew something to measure, using a vintage sewing pattern!

I have recently acquired a number of vintage patterns and I've been adding them to my stores a few at a time, after I've gone through them to check for condition issues and missing pieces or instructions. Stay tuned for more, and don't forget to tell your friends if they like to sew! Meanwhile, here are a few to choose from.
This cool 70s pattern makes loose palazzo pants, a maxi dress, a jacket, a top, and a knee-length dress. Lots of options!
Like tunic length shirts, but the ones you find are always too long, or the sleeves bind under the arms? This blouse pattern from the 80s (actually borrowing from a late 40s design), can help you with both problems. Looks very comfortable! I really like views 2 and 3 on the front.
This fabulous top and skirt pattern from Vogue masquerades as a dress with a late 50s/early 60s style about it. I seriously love the view in yellow! a taste for vintage designer fashions? Here is a lovely and feminine dress designed by Albert Nipon for Vogue! It has some pleating on the bodice and a faux tie waist.

These designer patterns are selling quickly. I put a Calvin Klein pattern here on 1/25 and it sold immediately!
Here is a drape-neck dress pattern from supermodel Lauren Hutton's signature collection designs. You can put the shawl drape in the front or the back, and vary the length, depending on the level of drama you wish to achieve.
Maybe you are more interested in vintage sewing patterns for costume appeal. This Edwardian nightgown pattern will appeal to the Downton Abbey fans among us, because it was designed from clothing from that time period.  It has a very wide range of size options, and it has never been cut!
This blouson shirt pattern is more like the fashions from the current season of Downton Abbey, which takes place in the late 20s. The pattern itself dates to the 70s, but i see it regularly these days, often paired with skinny leg pants and flats!
For the teens, I do have some juniors patterns, like this sundress pattern from the 70s, drawing upon the country girl image. This one has never been cut!
I also have quite a few patterns for babies and toddlers, like this darling infant bib and overalls pattern. The pieces are so tiny!

I hope you've enjoyed this little tour of my pattern collection. If you like a pattern but it isn't in your size, you might want to check out a pattern resizing tutorial like this one, for converting to plus-sizes, or read the discussions in this forum about how to convert vintage patterns for unusual body types and figure issues. I'm sure there are other useful links from around the web--I'd love to hear about them!

Thanks for reading!  Don't forget to follow me on Facebook, where I'll be posting links to more sewing related paraphernalia as I make it available.