Category Archives: Magazines

Country Living’s Kit Barn

It’s LIVING IN A BARN WEEK!

This month’s Country Living magazine features 4 converted barn homes,

country living october 17

+ it’s my job to review each one, starting with yesterday’s Modern Barn.

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Today I shall discuss the Kit Barn.

Kit meaning it’s built from precut posts-and-beams + arrives on a truck

from Country Carpenters in Connecticut.

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But first.  Remember how I geeked out over the sweet paintings of the barns?

I read the tiny print to see who the talented artist was,

+ her name is Emily Isabella.

emily isabella

How adorable!

She has an etsy shop, which I need to investigate further.

We’ll discuss.

But first.  Back to today’s Kit Barn.

This is a small detail, but how much do we love that transom-style window

above the garage door?

A lot.

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Some people in our town added a garage to their beautiful older home,

+ I was so impressed when I saw that they had included a similar transom window!

I mean, WHO does that?  Besides nobody!

Perhaps I’ll risk having a restraining order placed upon me

+ snap a photo to share with the class.

Anyway.  The homeowner is Laura, + she lives in Napa Valley.

Turns out she’s a fixer upper flipper with her own company,

Del Mar Restoration!

I can’t wait to look at their website.

I’ll report back.

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I’m SO sorry for my crappy photos!

I am a huge fan of Adirondack chairs,

+ this one earns extra points for being modern + navy.

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 I like all the crunchy gravel surrounding the barn

+ the charming cupola + weathervane.

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Inside, there’s a bedroom tucked under the exposed rafters.

That bed looks like it’s been upholstered with a gray linen,

+ the mix of pillows + the Hudson Bay blanket fit nicely in a rustic barn home.

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Nearby there’s a seating area with another favorite, a brown leather couch.

The light fixture + that rug (navy + plus signs!) are both swell.

That coffee table, though.  Whoa.

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Wish I could persuade G.O. to try + make one for us.  Stay tuned.

That horse trough tub is cool.

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I can only imagine how hard it would be to persuade G.O. that we need one!

cats fighting

HA!  It’s always tons of fun when I get to use the fighting cat photo!

But wait.

My fave feature of this entire barn would be the RED WHEELS on their table.

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O . . . M . . . G !

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I told G.O. that, if he/we ever see anything like them, we must get them!!

I’ll keep you posted.

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Next on the barn home agenda is the Neutral Barn.

Hint: lots of white.  See you then!

 

 

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Colorful Magazine Inspired Re-Do

This special issue of Country Home magazine is available right now,

+ you must go get a copy!  It’s that good.

country home magazine cover

Away with less is more decorating + just say no to neutrals-only!

So, as one does after reading a really good home magazine,

I immediately engaged in a really fun re-do, starting with this:

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Please.  How much do we love that sorter of mine!!??!!

The color’s perfect, + the patina is so wonderful!

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I bought it in the early 90’s from a friend + happily used it in my old retail store:

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Sadly, there are no photos of said sorter in said store.

Please.  I take dozens of pictures every week!?

WHY DIDN’T WE TAKE ANY PHOTOS WAY BACK WHEN??!!

I guess we’ll never know, but back to the sorter.

  After I closed the store + moved across the state to be with G.O.,

it’s been languishing inside our garage for years.

Then we moved into our Dutch colonial about a year + a half ago.

I mean, come on.

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Was that blank living room calling for it, or what!?

IMG_0966

Yes, it was.

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IMG_0995

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So.  Speaking of being inspired,

a few weeks ago I spied a photo of this room in Diane Keaton’s house:

diane-keaton-fiestaware-shelves

Next thing you know, I’m rearranging all my books by color!

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I really love how the cubbies display some of my ‘smalls’,

including these cute milk glass chickens from Grandma:

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And in honor of Grandpa, who always carried a buckeye in his pocket for good luck:

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A commemorative beer glass of the Cardinals ’64 World Championship,

(+ check out that adorable rock baseball made by my grandson!)

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Omigosh, how sweet is my girlhood bank?:

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A sweet red (Cardinal?) pie bird from my friend:

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And this fun pair of Dachshunds:

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Our framed map of Illinois is from the 1880’s;

we bought it at a pop-up vintage market in Grand Central Station in NYC:

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But wait.  There’s more.

My beloved new Country Home magazine

has inspired me to ‘busy up’ the top of my sorter!

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My son’s name is Jonathan,

so naturally, I got a bag from Jon’s grocery store in LA + had it framed:

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A wonderful handmade basket from a fellow artisan at a show in the 1990’s

+ my heavy glass Pottery Barn vessel filled with old baseballs:

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Now then.

Never fear — there have been other revamps in + around the Dutch colonial:

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And in our canned ham:

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Stay tuned for updates!

 


Vintage Cowboy Kids Rooms

Raise your hand if you, like me,

really miss our beloved, old Country Home magazine.

I have tubs full of old issues, much to G.O.’s dismay,

but I just couldn’t bear parting with them!

Exhibit A — April 2000

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“But Kay, what inspiration can one get from a 17 year-old magazine?”

Turns out, a lot.

Exhibit A

From London designer (+ one of my style icons), Cath Kidston:

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Those framed maps are still very much on trend,

+ how much do we love those nautical quilts?

Look what I found from Fabric.com — this similar, retro-style fabric:

What’s not to love?

Tons of vintage goodness, with all that red + blue!  I’m in!

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But wait.

Do we approve of the theme for a room?

Yes, I do, (sometimes!),

especially when they’re done with so much skill + good taste.

These rooms are wonderful —

they inspired me to go find other vintage cowboy stuff online!

+ + + + +

There’s a lot of vintage barkcloth on etsy + eBay:

cowboy-bark-cloth

More vintage barkcloth — drapery panels:

cowboy-40s-50s-drapery-panels

Disclaimer: sorry there are no links.

Most of this stuff had been for sale on etsy + eBay,

+ by the time I got there, had been sold.

+ + + + +

Vintage blankets:

cowboy-vintage-blankets

OMiGosh, how cool is this vintage radio?

cowboy-radio

What a darling lunch box!

cowboy-tin-bucket

People.  You’re never going to believe this,

but this western-theme wallpaper is available

in our new, favorite designer, Cath Kidston’s, online store!

cath-kidston-wallpaper

She has brick + mortar shops, too,

+ they couldn’t be cuter!

I visited her NYC shop in the SOHO neighborhood:

cath-kidston-shop

Sadly, that NYC store has closed,

+ it looks like there are no U.S. stores right now.

No worries.  Shop online.  I did already!

Here!  Have fun!

These cuties are just a fraction of what I want to get.

(Seriously, I had to force myself to stop for this post.

There’s that much cool stuff!)

So.  My 1st post from old Country Home magazines!

What are your thoughts?  Still worth seeing?

Because trust me, I have many more!

Stay tuned!


This Old House

So

  We all agree.  Everybody loves Fixer Upper on HGTV.

And doesn’t it seem that they air old episodes nearly 24 hours a day?

I kid — but come on — let’s just admit it.

We have a semi-serious couple crush on these two:

chip and joanna

Meanwhile, here’s another question:

Did you know that This Old House is still on PBS?

Yes it is!  And I love it just as much as I love Fixer Upper!

People.  Here’s why:

TOH front facade

Yes, that’s a farmhouse, + yes, there’s a barn-like garage attached to it.

That looks just like a renovated vintage home,

as is usually the case with a This Old House project.

However, this season’s project is not their usual renovation;

it’s a new-build from a Vermont company, Connor Homes!

  • Go here:  https://connorbuilding.com/
  • * * *

The entire house is built in sections, indoors, inside their factory,

+ delivered to the building site on huge trucks!

TOH -- big truck

Feast your eyes on this epic cupola, nearly finished:

TOH cupola

Here it is, being lowered into place on the barn/garage:

TOH -- cupola being lowered into place

Nope.  That doesn’t look like the prefab houses we have in the Midwest!

Conner Homes specializes in historical-style homes.

Here’s another look-see at the This Old House project:

TOH front facade

Please.  Transom windows above the garage doors?  Epic!

White houses with red barn-like garages are “thing” in New England.

Here are a few examples of both old + new:

toh another house with barn 3

Raise your hand if you love standing seam metal roofs as much as I do!

Here’s another new-build house + barn project

by Yankee Barn Homes:

yankee barn big

And inside, you can see the house’s post-and-beam construction:

yankee barn

WOW, am I right?

Go here to read  more about it:

Eaton Carriage House

  • * * *

TOH -- house with red barn attached

TOH -- house with red barn attached 2

How about board + batten siding?  Love it!

TOH another house barn with cupolau

So.  Now you’re asking,

“Kay, on what day of the week is This Old House aired?”

I think that varies from 1 PBS station to another.

Here in Chicago, it’s on Tuesday nights on the Lakeshore PBS channel.

May I also recommend the This Old House magazine?

I subscribe because it’s only $1 per issue when you do,

+it’s a really, really good magazine.

TOH magazine

And don’t you love it when a magazine lands in your mailbox?


I Love Botanical Stuff!

Show of hands!

Who, like me, subscribes to Elle Decor magazine?

I’m not always a yooge fan, but each issue always contains 1 or 2 good houses,

like this one owned by this adorable family:

redbird -- guy's glasses frames elle decor

Check out those cool glasses frames on the guy!

Coincidentally, we went frames shopping for G.O. yesterday!

That was conflict free.  Not.

cat fight

But stay tuned — I really like the frames I insisted that he get.

Meanwhile, I digress.

Let’s go back to inside this house in Elle Decor:

redbird -- wallpaper elle decor

Can I get a yay or nay for that espalier wallpaper?

I LOVE IT!

Espalier is a Frenchie word for training a tree to grow horizontally,

usually on a wall or a fence.

My plans include our having an espaliered tree in our yard.

Someday.

Back to the Elle Decor house.

Check out yet more botanical happiness:

redbird -- allium artwork

Our Elle Decor family has this very print of alium flowers!

Theirs is hanging on the wall above their freestanding tub.

This photo above, however, is from the Shabby Creek Cottage blog.

Pretty!

In closing, we went to IKEA the other day,

+ they had artificial alium blooms for sale, @ $8-ish.

Did you get some, Kay? — I hear you asking?

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Sadly, no.  I feared G.O. would get a little cranky.

He doesn’t understand!

.No worries, though — look what I found on etsy!

redbird -- allium from heavenlyhomeflowers shop on etsy

These silkies look a lot better than the plastic ones from IKEA.

Go here:  www.etsy.com/shop/HeavenlyHomeFlowers

I think it’s high time I make a morale boosting purchase.


Farmhouse-Style Vacation Home

My May-June 2014 issue of Midwest Living arrived this week — yay!

 Imagine my excitement

when I spied this farmhouse-style vacation home

in SW Michigan:

lakehomebuildersmi.com

lakehomebuildersmi.com

I immediately recognized it as one I’d seen before,

 when it appeared on the cover

of the late, great Chicago Home + Garden magazine:

chicago home + garden summer 2012

Summer 2012

That issue was so divine, I just had to save it!

Are you a magazine saver, too?

In my world, there are some that are just so wonderful

that you just can’t bear to part with them!

* * * *

Anyway, there’s that same front porch, now:

midwest living front door + porch

I love the classic white siding!

The grays of the industrial-style sconces+ galvanized pots

 complement the black door + sidelights very nicely, too.

Those handsome homeowners on the porch are Tom + James,

who are partners in their Chicago interior design firm.

http://www.jamesthomaschicago.com

Obviously, the guys live + work in Chicago

+ spend weekends + vacations at their farmhouse,

about an hour + a half drive away in SW Michigan.

Here:

saugatuck map -- from chicago, etc.

All the cool kids in Chicago own vacation properties

 in the super charming beach communities

along Lake Michigan’s shoreline.

My cool friend, Alan, vacations here + assures me that I would love it, too!

Stay tuned for this summer, fingers crossed!

* * * *

But back to the house.

Here are Tom and James again, sharing a moment in their cottage-y kitchen:

midwest living kitchen

I’m a fan of the ceiling planks,

the cute schoolhouse light over the farmhouse sink,

+ the pale wood tone of the floors.

I’m seeing lots of non-kitchen-y rugs in kitchens lately, + I approve!

* * *

Speaking of approval, here’s my favorite space in the house, a screened porch:

midwest living enclosed porch

I love its rustic, cottage charm, + that red Vermont Castings stove is wonderful!

* * *

In contrast, the living room is a tad more formal:

midwest living 2-story living room

While it’s furnished in too formal a style for my vacation home taste,

there’s no denying it’s a gorgeous space.

That tall ceiling + those clerestory windows + all the white!  Love!

* * *

Meanwhile, here’s one of the guest bedrooms:

midwest living bedroom northern air by benjamin moore

I’m a fan of the twiggy side table, the iron bed

+ that cool, vintage photograph.  (I’ve always wanted one of those!)

The pale blue paint, which rules, is Benjamin Moore’s Northern Air.

* * *

So.  What do you think of hanging plates in a bedroom?

midwest living guest bedroom plates on wall

I’ve always liked it, but I know some people don’t.

It’s so sweet!

* * *

And now, speaking of sweet, look at the kids’ room — it’s so cute!

midwest living kids room

The layout is genius, + I love all the red!

I have a similar lamp, repurposed from an old gas can,

that I bought decades ago (yikes!)

* * *

The bathroom’s very nice + on the plain Jane side:

midwest living bathroom

* * *

But c’mon, Tom + James!  This is a vacation house!  Let’s have some fun!

Okay.  Here’s fun:

midwest living topiary on column, shelves

Who doesn’t love an old, wooden sign?

I’ve been making old-looking signs, too.  (I’ll share later.)

I really like that vintage column + that topiary housepant, too!

I like them so much that every spring, I’ll ‘spring’ for one . . .

. . . knowing full well that the poor thing won’t survive the winter at our house.

The humanity!

Fingers crossed for this year — hope ‘springs’ eternal!

* * *

So.  I’ve saved the most fun feature of Tom + James’ farmhouse . . .

. . . a gallery wall of paint-by-number paintings, at the stairway!

midwest living staircase paint by number

Way to go, Tom + James!

And how cool is it that their houseguests

often bring them a new paint-by-number painting

as a “thank you” host gift!

Isn’t that the most adorable idea, ever?

🙂


My Round Lawn Love

Announcement:

I’ve somehow managed to stay cheerful + upbeat all winter,

but not so much today.

Yes, sadly,  I finally have the full-blown winter blues.

It’s now past time to gas up the car + point it SOUTH!

* * * *

Since we’re otherwise occupied + sadly, must remain up north,

near Chicago (a.k.a. the arctic circle),

I must seek out this sort of online morale boost:

round lawn

grimlyhouse.tumbler.com

When I spied this little gem on Pinterest yesterday,

I swooned + immediately thought of another round lawn I’d seen

in a long-ago (May/June 2007) issue of Cottage Living magazine** RIP.

**Yes, of course, I saved it all my CL mags!   (Much to G.O.’s dismay!)

Here’s the cover:

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Here’s the lawn:

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Whee!  Bad photo, but you get the idea.

This bit of perfection is near Cape Neddick, Maine

+ was designed by its owner, Thomas Lovejoy.

There he is:

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Is anyone as wowed as I am at the way he mows in a circle??

 * * * *

All I know is that,

ever since I first saw that round garden in Cottage Living,

I’ve longed to have one of my own!

Here’s yesterday’s inspiration again:

round lawn

Pinterest

Wow, those edging bricks, laid in a soldier course!  Genius!

I’m especially glad — now — that I insisted we salvage our old bricks

from the torn-out chimney in our Dutch colonial fixer:

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Dare I hope that we have enough bricks

so that we’re able to complete not 1 but 2 projects —

edging for my proposed round lawn and a patio —

as done by these landscaping winners?:

round lawn with brick patio

Please.  I love it!

Here’s one more round lawn:

round lawn with paver border -- pinterest

Pinterest

I’m almost as fond of this stone edging as I am of the brick.

Doesn’t it define the lawn’s roundness

+ give its edges awesome crispness?

* * * *

Meanwhile, my plans for the rest of the day

include fantasizing about having a round lawn in our new yard.

Hurry UP, spring!  (As if.)

Stay tuned!


Amazing Bargain Countertops — Yay Or Nay?

SO, the January Amazing Bargain Issue of Country Living magazine is out.
It’s pretty amazing, alright — it’s one of their best, I’d say!
CL bargain issue cover
I think I was most intrigued by a bargain kitchen
in which the owners installed faux soapstone countertops.
Have a look-see for yourself, from CL‘s Facebook page:
CL kitchen with the plywood countertops
Instead of shelling out for (pricey) soapstone countertops,
fake the look with inexpensive plywood
coated in chalkboard paint
+ sealed with paste wax.
* * * *
How much does that idea rule???
(Please note those shelves + brackets; we’ll discuss them later.)
* * * *
Back to the countertops.
I was so smitten with the idea of faux soapstone
that I immediately shared with G.O.
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Seems that “what rules” is in the eye of the project beholder,
as he nixed it immediately.
The humanity!
* * * *
But I digress.
While I plot to coerce him, let’s look at some soapstone kitchen counters:
absolute black granite #2
Sorry — didn’t get the source here.
soapstone counter -- kat dev
Kat Dev via Pinterest
* * * *
Perhaps you’ve noticed that both the CL kitchen + this one (above)
have similar open shelving + identical brackets.
* * * *
I found ’em for us!
Here they are, your Classic Iron Shelf Brackets
from Signature Hardware:
CL bargain issue -- shelf brackets
Talk about a bargain — these are priced at $7.95 – $11.95!
* * * *
As of this moment, I plan to use these in our own kitchen.
Please view said-same, in its current, “before” state:
Our kitchen island will end up in the approximate location of this 2x4.
Here’s my kitchen design sketch
(pardon the faintness; I didn’t realize I was going to share!)
kitchen sketch #1
As you can (barely) see,
my plans include open shelving
on at least one side of our restaurant-style range hood,
similar to the winning kitchen I shared:
soapstone counter -- kat dev
Kat Dev via Pinterest
* * * *
love it when a plan comes together!
Now, back to those faux soapstone countertops I want.
We now know that G.O. thinks they’re crazy.
What do you think?
As always, stay tuned!

Cure For Cabin Fever

Welcome to our snow-covered Winter wonderland!

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See? I told you our dark brown fence
looks great against the snow!

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The front of our house looks pretty cozy, too!

People.

I LOVE SNOW!

white christmas snow

Still from the movie White Christmas

I WANT TO WASH MY FACE, MY HANDS, MY HAIR IN SNOOOOOW!!!

Sadly, our poor doggies are not so amused:

dachsie in snow

Disclaimer #1: this is not our snow,
nor is this my Dachsie

Disclaimer #2:  as much as I love snow,

HATE the sub-zero temps we’re having!

I’M FA-REEZING!

cold man photo

laszlo-photo/flicker

I’m so cold, I’m actually kind of dressed like this, indoors . . .

(where are my gloves?!?)

. . . so I shan’t be crossing our threshold any time soon!

* * * *

SO WHAT’S A GAL TO DO TO AVOID CABIN FEVER, you ask???

Duh.  No cabin fever at my house!

  I’m actually just proceeding as per usual,

  happily continuing my design work on our current project . . .

IMG_1416(1)

. . . wishing we were further ahead with this squalor bathroom . . .

Are words necessary here?  I think not!

. . . + searching for inspiration for said-same, online!

* * * *

This means it’s time for me to share with the class!

Let’s enjoy a little “before” + “after” happiness from

Country Living magazine’s website:

Before

At first glance, the “before” looks pretty hiddy, no?

But wait!  That tub is actually beyond cool (wish we had one!),

+ that floor is yelling, “WORK WITH ME, PEOPLE!”, isn’t it?

Let’s have a look-see at the fantabulous “AFTER”:

CL bathroom -- after

YUM!

The gray walls are really rocking the gray in the mosaic tile!

So is the warm cinnamon of the rustic stool/side table!

That wood tone is my absolute favorite, + if this room was mine,

I would repeat it with this window treatment:

I’d also switch out that naughty light fixture,

no matter how vintage +/or original to the house it is.

No can do.

CL bathroom -- after

Let’s hang something like this, instead:

rejuvenation schoolhouse with shiny copper

http://www.rejuvenation.com/catalog/products/miles

Or this, if you — like me — just can’t commit to shiny yet:

rejuvenation schoolhouse light with copper

http://www.rejuvenation.com/catalog/products/miles/configurations/antique-copper-with-8in-opal-drum-shade

And one more thing.

Please note the large framed botanical:

CL bathroom -- after

A large, statement piece of artwork like this

really ramps up the style in a bathroom, doesn’t it?

I’m currently searching for said-same

for our squalor bathroom!

'Nice' paint job on that cast iron pipe.

Stay tuned!


SHOPPING + MAGAZINES, ONLINE!

I just realized there are just 22 more days until Christmas!

HOW DID THIS HAPPEN!?!

surprised boy

I’m spending my days sewing like the wind,

making pillows as fast as I can

for the galleries + shops that sell them for me.

Like this, for them:

pillow -- l.a.

Co-op 28 Handmade + Vintage
1728 N. Vermont
Los Angeles, CA

https://www.facebook.com/Coop28handmade

* * * * *

Meanwhile, I steal a few moments at the bozoputer when I can,

as I’m trying to handle Christmas online.

Look at the old-fashioned gift stickers I ordered from an etsy seller,

MollysScrapbooks:

Christmas

Christmas

Everyday

Everyday

www.etsy.com/shop/MollysScrapbooks

People.  I am mad about their slightly industrial, retro office style — aren’t you?

My plans include using these with some kraft paper gift wrap

+ lots of red + white baker’s twine:

baker's twine

Speaking of etsy + baker’s twine, I also ordered some small cookie bags:

christmas gifts - the bakers something bags

www.etsy.com/shop/thebakersconfections

I know!  How adorable!

Maybe we’ll bake Snickerdoodles

from my 60’s 4-H cookbook.

Stay tuned!  I could possibly take some photos + share the recipe!

You’ll thank me.

* * * *

Back to shopping.

Here we have the swell banner-style return address labels

I ordered for our Christmas cards, from another etsy shop,

PumpedOnPaper:

christmas gift -- pumped on paper return address banners

www.etsy.com/shop/pumpedonpaper

Aren’t they wonderful?  They wrap from the front to the back of the envelope!

Genius!

For our monogram, I asked for OK, which is kind of our ‘trademark’.

Get it?  Ole Olson + Kay?

* * * *

Last but not least, I ordered myself an early Christmas gift yesterday,

+ the UPS boy dropped it off at our porch just this afternoon!

Hey, look!  More baker’s twine!

Barr-Co. apothecary candle K. Hall

Barr-Co.
apothecary candle
K. Hall Designs
St. Louis, MO

http://www.khalldesigns.com/products/barr-co/

Of course, I wanted this candle because of its vintage apothecary style,

+ because they’re made in my beloved St. Louis.

The good news is that the scent I ordered — their new Fir-Grapefruit — is beyond divine!

In fact, the November ’13 issue of  Lonny magazine named it their SEASON’S BEST SCENT!

lonny

lonny magazine cover -- november 2013

http://www.lonny.com/magazine/November+2013/PKNA7_-nAsm/1

You have heard of Lonny magazine, haven’t you?

It’s online.  It’s free.  It’s the BEST THING, EVER!

Go there now + thank me later.

lonny magazine cover

http://www.lonny.com/magazine/December+January+2014/G4ACFTKNUUI/1

You’re welcome!

 

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