birds of a feather

Or perhaps that should be accessories of a fabric? New this holiday in the Primrose Design shop are matching sets of accessories—all from the same fabric and made with coordinating buttons, zippers, and webbing.

handbag accessory set

I made these at the request of a shop owner, but realized that it made perfect sense because customers often buy two items in the same fabric to give together as gifts. I just expanded the idea a bit to include four items—a mini wallet, zippered bag, tissue cozy, and key fob. This may be too matchy-matchy for some buyers, but, hopefully, will appeal to others. I've pretty much given up on trying to predict what will sell and what won't :)

There are five sets listed on my site at $27 per set (20% off the retail price of the items sold separately) and seven more will be at Green Being in Scranton in time for First Friday on December 3rd. If they all sell within the next week, I'll make more.

Also, a special deal on my site—Buy a vintage apron and receive a free package of my vintage-inspired recipe cards.

Sorry I haven't been blogging much lately. I've been working flat-out, completing custom and wholesale orders, and getting ready for the holidays. Business was very slow during the summer months so I'm thrilled that things have picked up. Even if I am crazy busy :)


it's beginning to look a lot like Christmas

Inspired Ideas - The Christmas Issue
The Christmas issue of Amy Powers' Inspired Ideas is out and you can view it here. There's a Primrose Design project for an embellished holiday apron on pages 144-147. Once again, I'm honored to be included among such illustrious crafters as Charlotte Lyons, Jenny B. Harris, and Mary Engelbreit! It truly is a gorgeous magazine and I was thrilled to be asked to contribute!


see you Saturday

I know most of my blog readers aren't local but, if you are, please stop by and say hello. This event is a great opportunity to both support the library and get some of your holiday shopping done (and wrapped!). There's a bake sale and you can even listen to live jazz from 1-3. Hope to see you there.



Last Saturday we drove about 2 hours to an antique mall, one we've been to before with mixed results. As you know, hunting for vintage treasure is one part hard work and another part luck. No amount of hunting will turn up something that isn't there. But, this time, I got lucky!

When I first spotted the two bags of fabric scraps I thought "1940s". I didn't even examine them that carefully—they looked good, the price was right, and into my basket they went. It wasn't until I got home later that evening and took them out of the bags that I realized I was off by about a decade. They're 1930s for sure. There's something about the designs from this era that I love. The florals, which can sometimes be too sweet in other time periods, usually have something geometric to jazz them up.

Like yellow roses with little black rectangles and dots—

1930s cotton print

Or this orange floral with big yellow diamonds in the background—

1930s cotton print

The woman who saved these scraps had such similar tastes as myself that I love everything in these scrap bags! I wish I could show them all to you, but I'll limit myself to the very best ones. Most of these examples are fairly small scraps but there are some that are quite large—plenty of fabric to work with!

1930s cotton print
Love the colors on this one!

1930s cotton print
If I had yards and yards of this I could make all my fruit pot holders with this fabric on the back!

1930s cotton print

1930s cotton print
Navy blue floral

She really liked oranges, yellows, blues, and reds. One bag had lots of blue fabrics; the other was more orange and yellow. I wonder if there were more bags of different colors that someone grabbed before I got there!


meet Billy and Frisky

I absolutely love vintage children's illustration. There's something about the lack of color (or use of limited color, called two-color printing) and emphasis on beautiful black and white line work that is charming. So, I'm always picking up children's books while searching for vintage textiles.

Halloween Fun cover

The Billy and Frisky Stories follow the adventures of Billy Rabbit and Frisky Squirrel, two animal friends who try to make sense of the world around them just as children do. This edition, published in 1936 by Houghton Mifflin Company, is called Halloween Fun and Other Stories and is written by Julia Letheld Hahn and illustrated by Heman Fay, Jr.

billy and frisky

I love how animated and real these characters seem, even though they're drawn with just a few simple lines. The second color—green on some pages, orange on others—helps to shape the backgrounds. Here are a few of my favorite illustrations:

billy and frisky

Hope you all had a great Halloween!