11.28.2008

a gift for you

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If you're on my email mailing list you got a holiday greeting and discount code from me earlier today. The snail mail postcards will be mailed next week. And I'm going to offer the same savings to all of you. Take 20% off your order (on the Primrose Design website) during the month of December by entering the discount code HOLIDAY when you check out. And I'll be offering free shipping at my Etsy shop starting Monday. And I'll be doing a couple of giveaways (I know you love those) here this month.

I'm hard at work finishing up and photographing new products for the website including some of the things I bought last weekend when I went antiquing. There will be more buttons, sewing patterns, crochet pattern books, aprons, and some cute baby things. I made eleven new sachet stacks yesterday including two in Christmas patterns (one of which will be part of that giveaway I mentioned above). And I have more tissue cozies and mixed bags of buttons for the Etsy shop, too.

Last day to order for guaranteed Christmas delivery is December 18th* so get shopping!

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*The December 18th date applies to deliveries in the U.S. and Canada. If you're overseas you can still get the discount but I can't make any promises about when your package will arrive—it varies too much by country.

black friday

I'm really not into the whole concept of Black Friday—wake up way too early to drive to the mall to fight for a parking space to fight crowds inside to wait in line at the checkout to get bargains that probably will get better as it gets closer to the holiday. Not my idea of a good time. I sometimes get claustrophobic in crowds and I definitely get impatient waiting in lines. Unless it's antiquing I'm not even that into shopping. So, today you'll find me at home working—and eating turkey sandwiches ;)

11.25.2008

random thoughts

Boy, it's snowing like crazy here today! Luckily I ran all my errands yesterday. I needed to mail a bunch of orders so I had to go out anyway and I decided to get all my grocery shopping done on the same trip. The grocery stores were jammed with people shopping for Thanksgiving dinner and that panic shopping for when a lot of snow is predicted. Personally, four inches isn't enough snow to panic over but whatever. So I braved the crowds and got all my ingredients. We're having a small (just us), quiet Thanksgiving dinner and I bought the smallest turkey I could find but we're going to have tons of leftovers anyway. Turkey soup will be on the menu next week for sure.

What else? I won this very sweet stamped-for-embroidery child's play bib a few weeks ago on Ebay and just had to do the embroidery right away.

vintage child's play bib

The seller said in the listing that this was a rabbit but I don't think so. Possibly a bear cub (my husband's opinion) but more likely a puppy (look at the ears). But, I've had trouble telling puppies and bears apart before. Whatever animal it is, it's super cute!

In other news, I did some antiquing this past Saturday down near Allentown, PA, and found some really great stuff. Will post some pictures later this week if I can get good light for photographing (that won't happen today obviously). I hit the mother lode on buttons—one of my favorite sellers is going out of business and I got some really good deals. Which I'll be passing on soon (again, need to photograph them). I also found lots of hankies (one of the reasons I went out hunting) and some very cool aprons and baby things.

I'm actually feeling kind of stressed about all the things I have left to do, but it's a good day to stay inside and work. That's where I'll be.

11.21.2008

baby quilt progress

I spoke to the recipient of this quilt yesterday and she checks here frequently on my progress, so this post is partly for her and partly for the readers who are also checking up on me. Yes, I've been slacking but I'm back on it now :)

The due date has been updated to three weeks from now so I'm not going to make it in time anyway. That's OK. I'll deliver it in person as planned (only a bit later) but will actually get to meet the real recipient—the baby!

The quilt top is just big enough now that it's getting hard to photograph. I tacked it up on the doors of the armoire in my studio but I still couldn't show the bottom row. You'll have to imagine that.

baby quilt

All I have left to finish the top is an outer border of the stripe all around. The back will be entirely the brown polkadot fabric (at least I think so) and will either form a self-binding with a bit of the back brought to the front or the binding being a separate piece. Probably the latter as that will give me a few more inches of width. I'm trying to use the width of the fabric (45") without piecing.

My first picture is a little blurry. Here's a clearer closeup that shows all of the fabrics and the fawn block.

baby quilt close up

Still thinking about options for the quilting of the layers, although I bought some brown thread that I'll probably use. That's getting ahead of myself. First step is getting the top done!

11.17.2008

how I spent my weekend

Cleaned my studio...check
Cut out more sachet stacks (a customer bought out my supply)...check
Worked on the baby quilt (getting there)...check
Finished the custom baby pillow...check

And here's a photo of the finished pillow.

bird pillow

Sorry for the darkish picture. It was sunny for like 5 minutes this morning and I missed my window of opportunity. For the week probably. It's going to be really cold with the possibility of snow flurries. No matter—I have so much indoor stuff to do!

11.12.2008

baby pillow

Here are some pictures of the custom baby pillow I'm working on. The person who commissioned it sent me fabrics that she had leftover from sewing the bedding for the nursery...

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Then she chose one of my birdie embroidery patterns for the center panel. I've made so many of these designs (see more here, here, and here) that the embroidery goes really fast.

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I picked my floss colors from the fabrics, except for the ladybug, which really had to be red. But I did pick a softer, more coral-colored red so it wouldn't clash with the other softer tones. Even the black isn't really black—it's actually a dark brown with a purplish cast.

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I finished the pillow top last night and now I just have to do the back.

And, in case you were wondering, yes, I do custom work. That's how I got started and I still do a fair amount of it. Some examples are baby pillows like this one. I've also turned handkerchiefs, pillowcases, and embroidered towels into pillows—the same way I do my own creations but with the materials supplied by the customer. It's a great way to preserve linens you may have inherited from family members but don't want to actually use (and get stained or ruined). I also complete stamped embroidery projects for people who don't have the skills or time to do so themselves. Feel free to email me if you'd like to schedule a project.

11.09.2008

shop update

I've never done that well selling at Etsy. I have no one to blame but myself because I neglect the shop for long periods of time, letting listings expire and forgetting to add new items. I've been trying to do better lately and the effort is paying off.

I've been grouping some of my leftover vintage buttons by color and packaging them up for sale. It's a nice way to offer a variety of buttons for a good price. I have thousands (really) of buttons and there are some that I know I won't use. You might wonder why I buy buttons I don't like but sometimes the best deal in buttons is to buy a mixed lot. You pick out the "good" ones and resell the rest.

And I listed some of those tissue cozies that I showed here recently and they've been flying out of the shop. Maybe people are buying them for Christmas presents—one customer bought eight! So, I apologize if you saw one you liked and missed out on buying it. The good news is that I have another batch (three dozen this time) on my work table so there will be more listed this week. And, if you did see one here that you just have to have, feel free to email me. I sometimes have more of the fabric and can make another one, although the buttons will probably vary.

In other news, I've been working on a custom nursery pillow that is turning out pretty cute if I do say so myself. The customer, who made most of her own nursery bedding, provided me with her leftover fabric and chose an embroidery motif from my Lil' Birdie pattern. For the embroidery, which I finished up yesterday, I picked up all the colors from the fabrics. This week I'll sew everything together and post some pictures here.

The bad news is that I haven't made much progress on the baby quilt. So I really need to get cranking on that this week, too.