d*s book signing + handmade printing loveliness

Last week I had the delight of attending Grace Bonney's book signing for Design* Sponge at Home. It was loads of fun - I made a sweet friend, I hand-stamped a tote, and met lovely Grace (who is remarkably tiny in person). I felt much too rushed and anxiety-ridden during the demo though, so my tote ended up looking kind of sloppy. However, I had learned a nifty craft and I knew that I would attempt stamping again in my own decidedly quiet space.
So, I hopped over to the craft store the other day and bought some Martha Stewart craft paint and some adhesive-backed foam. For this project, I decided to stamp some muslin for a throw pillow. I used Martha's Hailstorm and Blue Calico, as well as a fabric medium.
I then drew a loose outline of a fox head onto my foam in pencil. I refined it a bit and then cut it out using a very sharp pair of scissors and stuck it onto my cardboard. I measured my stamp and calculated how large my piece of fabric ought to be if I wanted five rows and five columns.
I mixed up my paint and fabric medium (2:1) in two shot glasses and started loading up my stamp with a brush. I like the way that you can see the brush strokes in my print, however, if you'd like to avoid that, you can just load your stamp with a more even coat of paint.
And that, my darling readers, is that! Here is the finished fabric.
I don't have a sewing machine, so I am going to have to hand-stitch this baby. Bleh, sewing can be such a drag, but what's a girl to do when she wants throw pillows, damn it:)

Grace's book is really tops and I highly recommend it. I'm just so happy to have a hard-copy collection of her Sneek Peek feature. The crafts are pretty great and seem fairly easy too.

Well, I'm off. I hope that all of you have a mischievous Halloween tomorrow. I will be in Charlotte with my sweetie doing serious grown-up things (Andrew has an interview). Until next time;)


the return of fifi

This morning I awoke squealing, “Fifi is here!” Andrew just peeked in from the kitchen and smiled. I've been waiting centuries for the Fifi Lapin shop to be restocked with fashion-y bunny goodness. I admit it, I am mad about Fifi's blog (is there anything better than a style maven, who also happens to be a bunny?) and have been longing for a print, but in the past I've been too indecisive to snag one in time. This time I was prepared though. I waited all week trying to savor each snippet of the collection. The time finally came today and Andrew sweetly purchased one for me for the upcoming holiday. He's such a swell guy. I cannot wait to have my own Fifi print to admire on our wall! Here are some of my favorites:


dottie delights from madewell

I go weak in the knees for polka dots, especially bright pink dots popping on a neutral background. It has taken all of my will power not to snatch up that scarf and those glittens, but it requires more thought; I mustn't be impulsive. Anyhow, Madewell has loads of dotted goods and I thought it was my duty to point them out to my readers. Enjoy the speckled goodness!


a dish of jewels

I may not have a huge collection of baubles, but I still take delight in seeing the few that I do have in dainty porcelain dishes. These photographs are so inspiring. Pretty storage solutions are the ne plus ultra in my book. They remind me of being a little one and rummaging through my mother's chest of costume jewelry. I love the delicate clinks of metal against porcelain and could almost hear them as I collected these images. I hope that you like them as much as I do.
Sources: 1, 2, 3


finger knitting

Happy weekend! A few days ago I discovered Katherine's super-awesome blog, Making Chicken Salad, and found this great tutorial on finger knitting garlands. How had I not known of this easy craft before now? Although I know that it is way too early, I am making and gathering holiday decorations. I just know that December will be here lickety-split and I want everything to my liking beforehand to avoid unnecessary stress. Anyway, I ran off to the craft store and purchased several bundles of Martha Stewart's Glitter Eyelash Yarn in Sterling and Rose Quartz. I've been knitting since. The garlands are just so soft and vintage-y looking and I love them.


sweet pup gear

That cutie above is our little Kessie. I'm usually thoroughly disappointed by the garish offerings I find in most pet stores, but recently I discovered two pretty shops that fit my aesthetic.  The first is blinkthings, which carries the nicest rope leashes and brushed brass pet tags in organic shapes.
The second is Mungo & Maud, which carries both dog and cat products that are beautifully designed, graceful and subdued. One of my favorites is their "mishap" spray. It makes me laugh, because that is such an elegant name for what we just call "pee" spray around here. These are some of my favorites.


ode to a canvas tote

Vintage clutches used to be my bag of choice, but I could never fit everything in and would end up awkwardly trying to grip my book and clutch under my arm.  Then I discovered the roomy wonders of the canvas tote. I could throw in seven lipsticks, three books, my Instax mini, a water bottle and still have room for more junk.  I love that a canvas tote is cheap and can accommodate all of my crap. This summer I've been carrying around a tote designed by Anabela of Fieldguided, which is pretty as pie, but I can't help longing for these totes by VerĂ³nica de Arriba, too. Her illustrations are simple, yet darling in a non-cloying way. I especially fancy that panda illustration:)


"making do" red velvet cupcakes

Last night I got a hankering to make some red velvet cupcakes. I've been using this cake recipe for awhile and it is absolutely divine. However, I was short on some ingredients and had to make do with what I had on hand. Luckily, the results were still scrumptious. I feel slightly embarrassed admitting this, but I substituted buttermilk with a mixture of one half hazelnut coffee creamer and one half skim milk. I know, I know - real bakers must be shaking their disapproving heads, but they still turned out supremely moist. I also omitted the red dye and berry topping, because I was out. This cake recipe yields about thirty cupcakes and I suggest keeping them in the oven for a short twenty minutes. They may not be perfect, but they're still yummier than any store-bought sweets.