Friday, February 25, 2011

Mail's Here!!

Ever since I can remember I have wanted to make a mohair bear. I do have a kit that I bought years ago and never started. The thought of cutting that beautiful large piece of mohair makes my skin crawl. I have made bears, lots of bears. Bears that I call my preparation bears. They were preparing me so that I might cut into that beautiful mohair. I dream of making old antique Steiff looking bears. Today I received a package in the mail. It is from The Old Pincushion located in the Netherlands. Why the Netherlands you ask? Well..her bears are adorable and old looking and she makes patterns for them and has kits and mohair to go along with her patterns. Netherlands....hmmm...expensive shipping. Well, no, not really. I did save up my $, though. Some from Christmas, some from Etsy and some from commissioned work. I can't remember the exact shipping, but somewhere in the ball park of  $10-$15. Don't quote me. If you would like to know the exact amount, just leave me a comment and I will get back to you. Check out her website:
Above: cute mohair bear kit, comes with eyes, thread for eyes, lace, cotter pins, rusty jingle bell, ribbon rose, discs, wool felt and mohair. The 4 differents types of mohair on the right were another kit, it contains just mohair.

Above: here's one sweet little bear. She's about 8 1/2 " tall.

Above: here's the other little bear. He is about 4 3/4" tall.

Above: all the different colors of mohair that I ordered. Each mohair piece is just enough to make one little
4 3/4 " bear. Maybe this will give me the confidence to cut into that big PaPa Bear mohair.
Have a "happy remains of the day" and a wonderful weekend,
ps. guess who the quote is by. Hint: his best friend is Piglet :)

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Foot Power....

Haven't worked on anything primitive in the last few days. I have been working on some stuff. Head on over there to check it out. I will leave you with a small post. This summer, if mom comes to visit, I would like to learn to sew on this baby:
It is a treadle sewing machine-doesn't use electricity just your foot power-AWESOME. Wish it was more portable, she weighs about 75lbs? Mom use to sew all of her clothes on one when she was a teenager. I would love to sew something on it. I can't remember what year model it is but the decal is of the Spinx. Which I guess was real popular when King Tut's tomb was discovered?
The machine is pretty clean. I am not sure how to do the bobbin or if it uses modern needles. I do have a manual that I need to check out.
Thanks and have a great day tomorrow!!

Monday, February 21, 2011

On Pins and Needles...

Two new pincushions up on Etsy-  .Nothing much to blog about today. I have spent the better part of the day photographing the pincushions and getting them up on Etsy. Two daughters stayed home today, trying to recover. D#1 still has cough and throat hurts, doing a little better. D#2 is feeling much better, can't wait to go to school.

 Little Mouse Primitive Pincushion and Thread Catcher

Little Jack Primitive Pincushion and Thread Catcher
Have a good night,

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Please Pass the Needles..

The primitive pincushions are closer to completion. I am not sure how to put them on Etsy. It is a whole different direction than my clothespin dolls. Should I open another store to sell them? I believe that they kind of frown on that? Not sure, will have to check that out. Anyway, here's the new pincushions. I have used a pattern from cheswick company for the little pumpkin man and the bag is from sew by photos.

Above: Little mouse pincushion. He is holding a very large button, sitting upon a ball pincushion filled with stuffing and rice for weight. The little bag is for trash, such as snippets of fabric, wool or string. The long hand dyed ribbon is for your scissors. Tie them on and then when they are not in use, place them in the little pocket on front. A wool heart and antique skeleton key complete the scissors pocket.

Above: Fabric and wool strawberry. Two wool heart pins. The mouse, ball pincushion, leaves, heart pins, etc are made from wool felt or wool fabric.

Above: The bag is made out of Jo Morton reproduction Civil War fabrics. The lining is made from the same line of fabric just a different pattern.

Above: Scissors using the pocket and ribbon. These scissors are 5". 4" and under scissors would work also.

Above: better photo, look at left hand corner in previous pic, can see gap of background fabric. bummer.

Above: side view.

Above: Mouse has little tufts of wool fibers in his ears. Oh rats....I mean...mice? I forgot a tail for him. Must cut a piece of leather cording and make tail asap!

Above: must be very windy in Miceville. I can't get his scarf to lay down. Wasn't sure how to adhere the button to him. I tried several different things for him to hold, but kept going back to button. He looked so helpful and cute holding the button. I knew glue, hot or otherwise wouldn't work. It would show and the button is so smooth, would probably pop off sooner or later. Thread worked wonderfully. I really don't like to glue my stuff. I try to always hand sew anything that is tedious. I think it looks much better than gluing. Not that gluing something is bad, sometimes it is very necessary.

Above: This is Little Numpnee. Numpnee is what my sweet little darling D#1 used to call a pumpkin. She was not quite 2 when she called all pumpkins Numpnee. It all started when her great-Grandmother Nell brought her a little puppet pumpkin with kitty cat. She loved that pumpkin and would call it "Numpnee".
Little Numpnee is by cheswick company. I did change the pattern some. The face is different and I made the arms and legs like my clothespin dolls arms. In her pattern he is a standing doll. So cute! Of course I haven't finished it. I am going to add some velvet ric rac to the ball, scissors pocket and scissors ribbon to the bag and stitch the saying "Pumpkins, pumpkins, everywhere". And something for Numpnee to hold.  

Above: Instead of a strawberry, he has a spider.

Above: I wanted his face to look vintage. His hat still need to be finished. The thready yarn needs to be glued down and a pom pom on top. I know it seems very early to be doing something for fall, but I just couldn't help myself. I have had this kit for a year and had planned on making him last summer but didn't get around to it. Now I am not sure if I want to sell him or not, he is so cute in person. He is only 4" tall sitting down, hat not included in measurement.
That's all I have for today,

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Pincushion Update

Here's the finished pear pincushion. I did add a little mat under the pear, my hand dyed ribbon and an antique skeleton key.
Above: The pear measures: 6" including stem. Bag measures: 8 1/2".

Above: antique key

Above: 2 woolen pins: one is a variation of penny like on a penny rug, and other is a wool catapillar.

Above: this is the little box. I placed a tuffet and small pear on it. The pear is 1 3/4" high.

Above: inside the box. I am going to modge podge the fabric inside on the bottom.

Above: The pins will be wrapped in black polymer clay and baked. The yellow is too bright.
Have a great rest of the day,

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Wool and Civil War Fabrics = Pear Pincushion

This is a little something that I have been working on. I just love prim pincushions, especially fruit and animal themed ones. This is a pear that I whipped up. Well...actually it took about 5 attempts before I got it like I want it. I still want to tweak it some, maybe make it taller. The little bag is something that I have been working on for a veeerryy long time. I just didn't like any of my bags. They didn't stay open, too floppy and the bottom was not wide enough. My sister sent me a link for a blog that has the most adorable bags with a tutorial to boot. All that she asks is that you give her credit for the pattern.
This bag was perfect. I didn't use her measurements or fusible interfacing technique-I didn't have any on hand. I just used regular interfacing sewn to the lining. Created my own measurements to fit my needs. Really the only things that I borrowed from her were: how she attached the lining to the outer shell and making the corners bigger. My old bags used the right sides together liner attachment which requires you to turn the bag inside out and sew the turning hole closed.
The pear is made from wool and civil war reproduction fabric. The bag is made from coffee stained linen and civil war reproduction fabric. Leaves, stem and 3 pear sections are wool felt. I haven't finished it. The skeleton key will be tied on some how and I am going to add a ribbon so that you can tie on a pair of scissors to keep them handy and not always lost. I should know, I am forever loosing my scissors. Might even make a small felt strawberry needle book. This will keep needles from getting lost in the pincushion--always happening to me.
Above: Bag is not attached to pear yet. I think that I might add a circle of wool to cover up where the bag attaches to the pear.

Above: small paper mache box. I painted it black and sanded it. I am going to add a stain to it and them maybe a mouse and tufted pillow/pincushion? Not sure yet. Will keep you updated.
Have a great day,

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Just a Little Peek Around The House....

On this blog I am going to try and show you my primitive things that I love. The main reason why I love all things primitive is because of all the history it holds. A lot of primitives are very expensive and not something that I should invest my money into. A good example is furniture. A nice pie safe can have a price tag of $400 and up. I just love pie safes and have wanted one for a very long time. So, I improvised. I had a cabinet that  Handy Hubby had made for me about 14 years ago. He had always intended for me to paint it so he did not use the best wood. I had wanted to white wash it and didn't let him know this little tidbit. The wood had huge knot holes, various colors of pine "rings", and several different types of wood. I did white wash it and for years I liked it, but he didn't. So finally after about 13 years of being white, I painted it black. I had him redo the doors, they were just raised panel doors, and put pie safe tin inserts. These tin inserts were a shiny aluminum color when they arrived. I had to wash them in denatured alcohol and paint a rusting medium on them. Then washed them again. Guess what??-they came out looking like they were 100 years old. I LOVED this process--word of caution this stuff is very powerful so make sure you protect yourself and the area around you and work in well ventilated area.
Here's the cabinet, wish I had a before picture:

Above: Closeup of tin.

Above: I love punch needle. this is a punch needle project on a horn board. Not a real horn board, but one that Handy Hubby made for me and I did comb painting on it. Then rubbed a stain on it. The punch needle was glued in place after the stain had dried. Punch needle is about 6"x5. The Lady Liberty pattern is from Country Stitches. In the back ground is my only hooked rug. I loved hooking it and I have another in the works just need to find some time to finish it.

Above: Uncle Sam punched needle. Same process as above.

Above: This little sampler was a free design from Blackbird Designs. It was on their blog. They make the prettiest samplers that really don't take a lot of time. I cross stitched my great grandmother's name and year that she was around 12 on it. Most girls during that time period were required to stitch samplers as part of their education and I thought it would be fun to record her name and the date that she would have probably stitched something like this. BTW: girls as yound as 4 or 5 were taught to stitch, especially mend socks, repair holes in clothes and quilt. Stitching samplers served two purposes: 1) it taught them their abc's and 123s and 2) it taught them the different stitches so they could help with the chore of mending and I guess it also taught them patience.

Above: Another free Blackbird Design sampler pattern. This one I used varigated thread and coffee stained the piece of linen before I stitched it. Staining it makes it look old.

Above: on top of the buffet on the landing halfway up the stairs. Hard to see but punch needle box, picture of Abraham Lincoln, small colonial houses, antique oil can, and firkin (bucket) all on a piece of homespun.

Above: Civil War reproduction quilt hanging in the stairway. This quilt took me 4 years to complete. There are no short cuts when you are doing it the old way. I did occasionally use my rotary cutter though. Most of the triangles, squares that you see I used a template, pencil and scissors. I tried so hard to match corners, sometimes ripping something out 3 or 4 times. Whew.....sure is nice to have that thing on the wall now. One day I will give you the story behind each quilt square.

Above: my first and only hand hooked rug. I love the process. This pattern is from Pat Cross' book, Purely Primitive. I think, it could be her other book.

Above: My Resolute Desk..have you seen National Treasure 2? Well in it they have the Resolute desk(s). I refinished this desk about a year or two ago. It was left to Handy Hubby by his grandmother. I stripped and then stained it a mahoganey color. We love it. Such history and memories. The left picture is a great, great cousin on my side and the other picture is a great grandmother and great aunt on Hubby's side. The typewriter is a 1940 model that I bought recently at an antique shop that my mom, sisters, daughter and I went to. I loved the typewriter and for $12 how could I pass it up? I knew just where I would put it. 

Above: On top of black pie safe, crock bowls, butter molds, enamel tiny teapot and two vintage canning jars from mom :) they are holding wooden eggs.

Above: I call it pail, jug, not sure. I'll just call it milk pail. From mom, painted white with 1980s mauve and blue tulips on it. I painted it black and it looks awesome! Would be cool to have a breakfast bar with a couple of these for stools.

Above: Vintage recipe holder, and wonderful working scale I scored for $6!

Above: My wonderful real pie safe. I did save up for this. I had some commissioned work over the course of a year and ended up with enought $$ to get this.

Above: See what the Teddies spelled out? PRIMS....This small collection of 6 teddies is so cute. I love decorating with toys, it is a trick that I learned long ago. With small children around, how can they tear up old used toys that are so fun to decorate with. Some of these teddies had dresses, hats and suits on but I like them much better natural. One is even made from mohair. The darkest bear by the letter "H" block is one that I made a looonnngg time ago. It is fake fur from the lining of a coat. I also made the small quilt. It is from the Prairie Women's Sewing Circle. I think it is called "From Mama's Knee". It is a very easy quilt, you could finish it in a weekend. Blocks are some vintage ones that I picked up for $5 for a bag of about 25. Great price since they normally sell for .50 a block. The trunk I bought at a local antique store. I had save up enought money to purchase it and waited 4 months before I finally caved and bought it. When I checked out it was 30% off.   SCORE!! It wasn't expensive to start with, but I wasn't sure what I would do with it. Maybe it was a toy chest?

Above: Close up of what it is lined with. Some kind of general on a horse. See hidden teddy in the right corner. BTW: two kitten were made from an antique quilt and no I didn't make them. It is sooooo hard for me to cut up quilts. I love to buy them already cut up.

Above: small quilt that I made. It is a Jo Morton pattern with Jo Morton fabrics. She designs lovely minature quilt patterns and Civil War era fabric. See the two doll heads? I will blog about those in another post for another day.

Hope you enjoyed this very lengthy entry and welcome to my new blog,