Tuesday, June 28, 2011

One Year ETSY Anniversary and Sale!

Hello dear friends!  For the last 10 days or so I have been busy loading up my Etsy shop in preparation for the one year anniversary of Cathy’s Crazy by Design on Etsy.   As regular readers know, I don’t talk a lot about my Etsy Shop, which is probably good for you, the reader, but not so good from a serious marketing standpoint.  But since I’m seriously crazy, please indulge me this once!  And I have a reward for you at the end!  :-)
My favorite lace, now discontinued by wholesalers.  Not to worry - I have plenty!
The more lace I list, the more large orders I get to nearly clean me out, LOL!  No, I’m not complaining, but it forced me to work harder and smarter, and I think I’ve got a system down.  So, I would like to show you some of the goodies you will find in the way of laces....

4x4” picture frames sold individually or in pairs for greater savings

Lowered price on Fleurs de Lis

These sumptuous rayon Venice laces are dyed with potassium permanganate, a method introduced to us by the Australians (think Jenny Haskins, and Judith & Kathryn).  Not many of us use this method; potassium permanganate is a substance used in veterinary practices, water treatment plants, and swimming pools.  It can be pricey to obtain, comes in liquid or crystal form (I much prefer the crystals) and ‘particular' to handle, but WOW what wonderful results! 

I have also experimented with adding color washes to the golden laces. This picture is from a couple years ago. The coloration is a bit more subtle than this stark picture shows (my old camera - sorry!)  I will be adding some of these types of laces to my store in July.

So, here’s what I have for you, my dear blog readers.  From now through July 16, use the coupon code JULY11TENPERCENT (that’s July, then the number 11, then ten percent - all one word and in caps) when you check out and receive 10% off your order.  I wish I could just give you what your heart would desire, but we all know that’s not possible! And working this Etsy shop has become increasingly important to me as we are now transitioning into retirement this summer.

I will monitor the shop closely and restock daily. And next week watch for fancy fabric packs, more vintage laces and trims. After that I will concentrate on adding the vintage linens, patterns and other finds and treasures - all in time for you to use the coupon if you’d like.  :-)

Please remember that you MUST type in that coupon code at checkout to get the discount.  There is a place (highlighted in blue) where you’ll click and type it in.

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And a last note...  Bruce and I tended DGD London today.  She is really becoming a bit of a chatterbox. Her new favorite saying is “I DID IT!”  She is so proud of herself whenever she accomplishes something (it’s so cute!), and every syllable is enunciated so clearly!   She is such a good influence on us old folks.... :-)

Cathy maroon

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Happy First Day of Summer

Some vintage images for you....

 And some not-so-vintage images for you...

Cathy maroon

Monday, June 20, 2011

Fairy Swimming Pools

It was a gorgeous day today, mid-seventies and sunny.  The sky was so blue..... and puffy clouds drifted by on the occasional breeze.  What a great day to be outdoors!  We deserved it after it poured rain all day yesterday.

My roses are thriving.  A couple posts back I showed a picture of my happy rose bush in the front yard that was just beginning to bloom. Well, it hit its peak today so I decided to take photos. I love taking pictures of the flowers and other garden elements throughout the year, but mostly I just file them away in my picture files and only share them occasionally. Until this year.  Please bear with me!  It’s not that I plan to turn this into a gardening blog, LOL, but I believe most of us stitchers, sewing, and other needle artists all seem to have a deeper-than-average appreciation for beautiful flowers.

Looking North

Looking West

Looking South

Looking East
This is a hybrid tea rose called Daybreak.  I’m sure it was named that because of the apricot to pink shading of the blooms, which brings to mind an early dawn sky.  While I was outside taking pictures, a lady walked by and said that it was the most beautiful rose bush she had ever seen in her life!  That just made my day!!  I love making our front yard look nice so that passers-by can enjoy the beauty.

And the “Fairy Swimming Pools” from the title?  My sweet hubby Bruce was outside with me while I was snapping pictures, and he requested that I capture close-up pictures of the dew on the roses because they looked like Fairy Swimming Pools.

Click once or twice to “embiggen” the pictures.

Can you see the Fairy Swimming Pools?  It was easy finding the pools, but I did not catch sight of a single fairy out for a swim!

Cathy maroon

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Fathers Day Vintage Images

The images I have for you today aren’t Father’s Day images strictly speaking, but are basically just masculine images I culled from my large collection.  It is pretty easy to find images of women and children, but guy things... well that’s a different story.  So, I do hope you enjoy them!

And for those of you who have asked how Bruce is doing, we truly appreciate it.  He is doing much better this weekend.  His arm surgery on Wednesday turned into a bit of an ordeal, as they removed tissue, sent samples to the pathologist, and were told to take more. Three times.  It was a 3-hour surgery, and except for a one inch wide strip down the inside of his right forearm, everything is grafted skin (from his thigh).  They kept him overnight to manage the pain, and his first day home (Thursday) was difficult.  His arm is in a splint so he can’t move it and disturb the grafted skin.  On Monday he’ll visit the plastic surgeon to be checked.  But all is well and except for the scarring, there will be no lasting affect or disfigurement.  He is upbeat and thrilled that the kids are coming to visit today.  Life is good great!

Cathy maroon

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Liquidation Sale Finds and Roses

On Tuesday, the day before his surgery, Bruce and I went to a liquidation sale held by Utah Corrections Industries, which is affiliated with (and right next door to) the Utah State Prison in Bluffdale.   It opened in the morning but we didn’t go until late afternoon on the first of four days.  The only picture I took was the boring building.....

...but I did find some goodies.

A roll of small elastic (50 cents), a large roll of cotton sewing tape for labels (50 cents), a pack of 100 white metal 7” zippers (to resell for crafts) and a bazillion black metal separating zippers, 27” each.  Hoo-boy! Maureen suggested I look for these, and the idea had occurred to me before, so I took that as a sign.  ;-)  There were pallets and pallets of zippers, but most were small and with plastic teeth.  I know many crafters use the plastic teeth zippers with colored tapes to fashion flowers, but I don`t know how many inches are necessary, and most of them were small. So, I stuck to the basics.

Bruce also found a whole box of rubber feet (used for the bottoms of sports bags, totes, backpacks, etc.). They were sweeping them off the floor and were going to throw them away.  Bruce uses these feet in the radio kits he builds for kids.  They charged him 50 cents for the entire box, which is about what he normally pays for just two of the feet.

Today, Saturday, I hit the motherlode of estate sales.  I found a box of vintage sewing things for $3.00.  Most of the sewing patterns (and there are over 60) are from the Forties and Fifties. OMG.  I had already started listing some of my vintage patterns in my Etsy shop, and this was another “sign” to me that quitting my part-time job as bookkeeper at The Farm in favor of selling on Etsy (and staying home with DH now that he will be retiring in July) is what is in the cards.

And there was the coolest Singer Sewing Course book and materials (fabric and instructions) for six sewing lessons, dated 1954.  All this woman’s samples are there.... oh this is a story in itself for a future post!

Here are some more irises and roses that are blooming in our garden this weekend.  Enjoy!

Happy front rosebush

Front bed
When I first planted the pink rosebush above, I used Miracle Grow and watched it nearly wither away that first spring.  It was sickly, mildew-y and probably in shock.  So, I did what I always do to my roses; just water and ignore them.  The second year it became apparent it would survive, and every year has gotten better.  This is the fourth or fifth year, and it is now a happy camper.  The delphiniums behind it are staked and ready to start blooming soon!

Double Delight - backlit bloom from one of my front rose trees
I love this color!  But they fade as they get older...
Climber along back wall

Another back wall climber.  
Our third back wall climber is a white rose which always blooms AFTER the pink and red roses are done.

The apricot tree (above) has grown so large, that this fall I will need to replant these two miniature rose bushes, a large red tea rose bush, an Asiatic lily, and my hollyhock.  I will leave the chives and (not visible, but in two spots) and perhaps add some small herbs.  Must do some research first.

A couple rose bushes that were here when we moved in
The ground cover in this area has done a terrible job (and so have I) of keeping out the grass, so digging it up is another project for this year. I will probably use a landscape cloth and put rocks around the roses here. I’m thinking lower maintenance is the way to go since I am not getting any younger. Not that I haven’t tried, LOL.

Tomorrow, in honor of Father’s Day, I will have some “manly” vintage images for you.  I am hoping they will be a little different than what you usually see.  

Have a wonderful weekend!
Cathy maroon

Monday, June 13, 2011

Storage Solution for Thread

I was reading some blogs last week and happened upon an idea (no idea where - I start following links sometimes and just get lost....).  Some girl had used an printers tray for storing spools of sewing thread.  Light bulbs went off in my head!!  I have a printer tray somewhere....

Well, I never did find the printer’s tray, but I did find an old wall storage unit for rubber stamps. So I hauled it out and cleaned it up, resisting the urge to paint it.  Bruce kindly hung it for me in my studio, and I filled it with my sewing threads......

Thread storage “Before"


Now I need to find some cute (yet practical) things to put on my Singer Treadle when it’s closed up to sort of soften the look.  

This little shelf was such a simple solution that cost absolutely nothing.  And those old plastic thread bins  will be OUTTA HERE when we have our yard sale next month!

Cathy maroon

Final Autumn Round Robin Block

Today I finished the Autumn block for Colleen - the final one in our Autumn DYB round robin at Crazy Quilting International.

The cute autumn print that Colleen had in the middle lends a whimsical air to the block.  And I loved the indian corn print on the left.  I added some dyed lace, and a couple trims that I had bought in New York earlier this spring. On top, the sunflower is a very vintage trim, and the velvet leaves are vintage millinery as well. There is a little yo-yo and some silk ribbon “wheat” tucked into the top arrangement, and some seamwork here and there.  A pretty straight forward block, but enjoyable for me as I love these rich colors.  

Next up, I will be working on my block for Hearts and Hands for Sendai. Bruce goes in for his second arm operation on Wednesday, and I will take it along then to help pass the time. Tomorrow, DGD London comes for her day with us.  We are planning a little trip to the Farm.  Perhaps I will take the camera and share the pictures of baby animals (that I promised to Gina; I haven’t forgotten!)

In other “news”, LOL:  There is a huge textile liquidation sale beginning tomorrow  (and running for a week) in Draper (about 20 minutes south of us).  I will probably go on Thursday. Utah Correctional Industries is the host, and listed items include “textiles, canvas, nylon mesh, thermo batting, linings, fleece, cordura (???), fake fur, rivets, elastic, zippers, velcro, buckles, thread, piping, blankets, tool bags, camo clothing, and “lots of odds and ends and sewing hardware used in manufacturing clothing”.  A few of the items listed raised an eyebrow:  polyester double knits,  hydration packs (sewing that much dehydrates you, LOL), and orange safety mesh. THAT should be an interesting visit!  I will take my camera!!

Cathy maroon