Friday, August 21, 2015

M is for Marti

The Hanky Dress Lady

"M" is for Marti!  Do you remember Nancy? Well, Marti is a friend of Nancy's. She saw Nancy's dress and was reminded of a bunch of family hankies she had. This wonderful lady decided to give me all of those amazing hankies and all she wanted was a dress to keep for herself. In this bunch of hankies I found a small one monogrammed with an "M" and a lovely green tatted edged hanky. We decided the one with the "M" must have been one of her childhood hankies. I combined the two to create her a one of a kind Hanky Dress. BTW her favorite color is green!

I decided a dress was not enough for this generous I made her a Hanky Heart too.

Close-up of the front and back of Marti's green and white Hanky Heart

Close-up of Marti's Hanky Dress

Monday, August 17, 2015

Birds and Beans

Good Morning All - Today I want to talk about birds and beans! I have been working for quite some time to catch the two finch photos above. I've discovered that finches are quite flighty feathered friends. These pictures were taken at different times but in the same general area. They are enjoying themselves eating my catnip seeds.

While I am on the subject of birds I thought I would show you a couple of items I currently have available in my online vintage shop. The first is a cross stitched bluebird which I have been able to date back to the 1940's by the flat head screws in the wooden frame. This charming cross stitched bluebird was obviously made with much love. Most likely stitched by Mom and framed by Dad.

And then I have this cheerful yellow pottery pitcher set. It has this wonderful parrot motif on the one side and a pretty flower motif on the other side. It would look so spectacular in a cottage kitchen...and you could use it for a large bouquet of flowers as well.

Now - let's talk about those beans. Aren't they pretty? They caught my eye in the garden early this morning as the sun showcased their speckled rosey color. Oh wow! I just went and found the seed packet and it turns out that they are called Speckled Cranberry - what a coincidence. They are an heirloom variety that I purchased from the Seed Savers Exchange a few years back. Here is what the back of the packet says: Brought to America from England around 1825. Triple purpose bean. Can be used as a snap bean at around 60 days, green shell bean at around 80 days, or as a dry bean if grown to full maturity. Produces heavy crops of stringless 7-9" pods until the first frost. Pole habit, dry, 60-90 days. I mostly use them for winter dry beans.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Pat's Pretties - Hanky Dresses and Hearts

Hanky Dresses

Here is Pat with her newly framed Heirloom Hanky Dresses. The top two dresses were created from vintage family hankies and the bottom two are were created from a new hanky and a very special handmade antique hanky. This display is representative of four generations of women in her family.

hanky heart

These Hanky Hearts were created from bits and pieces of her damaged hankies. Don't you just love the subtle grey of this beautiful shadow box with its gentle gold tones accenting the frame. It's just lovely how the framer floated the ribbons in mid air above the hearts. The grey perfectly accents the detail of the Madeira handkerchief used in the hearts. 

The framing on both was done by the Colorado Frame Company located in downtown old Littleton.

christening gown hanky dress

These three very special white hankies were done in my baby baptismal gown style. One of which you will notice was included in the framed grouping above. Each one is adorned with antique mother of pearl buttons and two have silk ribbon bows. I've been making this style for years; however, I think this may be the first time I have published a picture of this style online. Please zoom in on the picture so you can see the beautifully intricate hand work in each of these hankies. The one on the left has a tatted edge, the middle one is pulled thread and needlework, and the one on the right, I believe is punchwork.

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Joyful Yellow

pale yellow sunflowers

I have this huge sunflower in my back yard. It is such a lovely pale color of yellow. The vibrant purple morning glory blooms are nestled among the cucumber vines delicate little yellow flowers. I have a bumper crop of cucumbers this year. I guess I should be thinking about pickles. 
yellow sunflowers +yellow bird

Here are some of my other sunflowers. Do you see my visitor??? Look closely. My little goldfinch is extremely shy and very fast. He does not like me or my camera. I consider myself lucky to have gotten this shot. The birds love eating sunflower seeds and my husband and I enjoy eating lunch on the patio while watching them eat their lunch.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

For Terri and Her Sisters

My journey with Terri began before Christmas of last year when she contacted me through my my Etsy Shop asking if I could make some dresses from her grandmother’s hankies. And like a blast from the past there was Terri in my inbox again today. I was thrilled because we had had so many fun conversations along the way …. I recall something about morphing Minnesota rabbits, a sister named Patti that was not born on March 17 and one named Kathy that was born on March 17, pink fairy dresses and memories of snow.
Don’t ask – we won’t tell.

Hanky Dress

The Hanky Dresses and Hanky Hearts you see here were shared with her sisters. In addition she purchased an additional St. Patrick’s Day Hanky Dress as a birthday gift for her sister who was born on March 17. Terri was so lucky to have bought that one when she did because the very next day its views skyrocketed to over 900 views (not sure why, but it may have been featured on the Etsy Home page). 

Anyway – long story short – she wanted to leave feedback on Etsy and that reminded me that I had intended to share her dresses with you all on my blog. Following is what she said when she originally received her Hanky Dresses.

Dear Muriel…love, love, love my little fairy dress! Kathy loves her pink one and Patti is thrilled with the surprise hearts and her pretty dress! Patti got her package yesterday and I got mine today. I was so excited! Once again, your beautiful handiwork is superior! So enjoyed our chats and will miss you! I will be sure and send business your way, if I can! Love, love, love you for bringing our memories to life in a way we can display proudly and see daily! – Terri

Little pink pixie dress and the hankie it was made from.

This was a very old and fragile hanky with storage damage, edge damage and a hole right in the center. I would guess that it dated back to the 1920's. I actually didn't think I could use it; but continued to experiment with try to hide the holes and damage and finally came up with this rather pixie-like design. Once I decided it was a pixie fairy dress I just had to add some iridescent beads and silk ribbon....and wah-lah!

The Hanky Hearts below were made from the one remaining hanky that could not be made into a dress. I think I managed to add most, if not all, of the remaining family buttons Terri had sent me to work with...a bit of a whimsical touch.

Thanks Terri – it was a pleasure! 
I too will miss our conversations.

And The Winner Is

The winner of our Hanky Dress Giveaway

Hankie Dress Giveaway

Congratulations Hope!

Monday, July 20, 2015

Living Vintage Hanky Dress Giveaway

Kim at Living Vintage and I are hosting a Hanky Dress giveaway. This is the lovely vintage hanky that Kim graciously provided. It is such a sweet classic! A precious pink floral cotton hanky!

vintage pink handkerchief

This is the Hanky Dress that I made from it.

pink floral hanky dress

And, this is how you can enter to win it.  Just go to Kim's blog LivingVintageCo to find the complete story about how this all came about and leave a comment. For extra chances to win you may leave a comment on this post or visit my Facebook Page and leave a comment in the post about the giveaway there. The winner will be chosen randomly from all comments received. Giveaway is open to US and Canadian residents only and runs until 9:00 pm on Monday, July 27, 2015.  Good Luck!

Living Vintage, The Hanky Dress Lady

These are Kim's Hanky Dresses hanging in her spectacular laundry room. Go have a look see. You'll find some great decorating ideas!

Several of my customers have also used Hanky Dresses to decorate their laundry rooms. 

Some have put them in open Shabby Chic frames on the wall while others have just lined them up on a string to create a sweet grouping. My friend just has two hanging from tiny nails on the wall above her folding drying rack. 

laundry room decor

Monday, July 13, 2015

"N" is for Nancy

A while back I received a phone call from a lady asking me if I would be interested in purchasing some hankies from her. Of course, I was interested, so we arrange a meeting. As I am looking through her hankies she asks me, "What do you do with them?" I showed her a Hanky Dress that I had brought with me just for this purpose. Long-story-short I ended up making some dresses and hearts for her grand children and friends from the hankies that she had originally wanted to sell. (I also got to purchase the rest.) The brown heart was for her grandson. The dresses are not shown in their relative sizes - I was just experimenting with a new Photoshop technique I learned. Looks like I missed a bit of the hanger on the pink dress.

hanky hearts, The Hanky Dress Lady, handkerchief craftsHanky Dresses, hanky dress, hankie dress, The Hanky Dress Lady, vintage hankies, handkerchief crafts

THEN...a couple weeks later, I get a phone call from Nancy and she tells me that she found a couple more hankies that were hers and would I see if one of them could be made into a dress for her. I ended up using both of the hankies she brought me and created a new design technique in the process. I was pleased with the result; and, as you can see, so was Nancy.

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Hanky Dresses, hanky dress, hankie dress, The Hanky Dress Lady, vintage hankies, handkerchief crafts
"N" is for Nancy

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Feeling Patriotic

I've been stitching together some red, white and blue stars and stripes. The top picture shows the front and back sides of three lumbar pillows with removable covers; and the bottom picture is a portion of one of four patriotic banners I've created. Each pennant is 16" long and 13.5" wide at the top. The banners are six feet long, sturdy and hand washable. Each pennant is composed of two pieces of machine sewn white cotton with fusible fabric embellishments and red hand stitching on the edges. Items are available for purchase from my Etsy shop where you'll find more information and pictures.

Monday, May 18, 2015

A Tour of the May Curtice St. Market

These are a few of the items that caught my eye at the Curtice Street Market yesterday. Cathy and Carolyn were minding the shop. That's Cathy behind the desk. As usual, Anita had some magical upcycled pieces.

The flowers in the garden were at their best.   And, I found some really fun garden stuff created by Jennifer. That's her clever patio bar - complete with rake wine rack and built-in ice bucket.

The Curtice Street Market is an occasional shop comprised of a group of vintage vendors and local artists.

Click Here to Visit their Blog