Handmade Gifts: Bandboxes

Bandboxes (or band box), also sometimes called hat boxes, were used primarily by men and women in the seventeenth and eighteenth century to protect, hold and carry their hats or other articles of clothing. Men’s hats during this time period were mostly made out of beaver pelts (beaver hat), which were imported and very valuable. These early … Continue reading

Hurricanes again

Some of you may have remembered the time we had with Hurricane Irene last year. And then there was last year’s Halloween blizzard. Well, now we’ve got Hurricane Sandy barreling down on us here in the Hudson Valley. Seems like hurricanes (or snor’eastercanes?) may be the norm in the future. AND, since I have free … Continue reading

The Piecemakers, quilting for a cause

This year marks the 15th anniversary of the founding of the Piecemakers quilt group. The group was formed in 1997 to help support the Akwesasne Freedom School located on the St. Regis Mohawk Reserve in Rooseveltown, New York. The Piecemakers quilt group is based out of New Paltz, New York, but has members from all around the world! The … Continue reading

Handmade Gifts: Framed Quilt Squares

Framed quilt squares make great handmade gifts and you don’t need to be an expert quilter to create one. First find a quilt square that you like, keeping in mind the size of frame you intend to use. Many quilt square designs can be found online, check out McCalls Quilting for ideas. The best part about these quilt … Continue reading

Handmade Gifts: Painted Bulbs

Handmade gifts are the best, especially when you get them, well making them can be pretty fun too! There are so many different gifts you can make. You can bake gifts, such as cookies, brownies or bread. You can print your photographs into cards, frame your images, or create a photobook. You can knit, crochet, … Continue reading

Perforated Paper

Perforated paper is exactly that, paper (pliable paper stock) in which holes have been punched to a specific size. Most of what is sold today is 14 count per inch, but perforated paper, invented around the 1820s could be bought up to 28 count per inch. Perforated card-board or card work, as it was called … Continue reading

Reuse to Remember: Vintage T-Shirts into Bags

So I am moving to Malaysia this week, I know how many times have someone said this to you today?   But really I am.  And one of my most favorite geeky things are re-usable grocery bags.  When I was moving out of my apartment in NY and escaping Hurricane Irene I used my cache … Continue reading

Pumpkins by Edmond Gray

Several years ago I had the pleasure of becoming acquainted with a wonderful artist Edmond Gray. We would often have long conversations about art, history, music, and politics, discussing different oil painting techniques and sharing our portfolios with each other. Around halloween one year, Ed gave me several photographs of pumpkins he painted, which he … Continue reading

Craft Room Tour

Remember that armoire I got for $15 at a big garage sale? And remember how I cleaned it up? Well here, finally, are some pictures of it being put to good use. Our little house has two rooms upstairs under the eaves: one larger one we use as a guest room, and one bitty one … Continue reading

On Not Being Perfect: Why Perseverance Counts

The funny thing about being Facebook friend with relatives is that they sometimes say pretty profound things. My one cousin posted last night that “It’s impossible to be perfect” and that she was the “Queen of Mediocrity.” That struck a chord with me. I’ve long identified myself as a “jill of all trades,” and “good … Continue reading