Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Big Hair

This pillow was an collaborative artistic project with my 4 year old son Kolya... His drawings are so much fun and I have had the idea to embroider some of them for a while. Kolya said this character had "big hair" like me. Now, I have consulted some very reliable sources and it has been confirmed that I do NOT have big hair. (Just had to make sure...)

If you want to make a similar project, I have used a natural linen as my background fabric and a patterned cotton for the back of the pillow. I picked up the down pillow form at IKEA, but most fabric stores carry a stock of pillow forms. You can even re-purpose a pillow that no longer works with your decor. I then took a photograph of Kolya's drawing (so that I could re-size it)... reversed the image... and printed it. I used tracing paper and traced over the drawing with a heat transfer pencil. I then ironed the design onto my linen. I pulled out a nice palette of embroidery thread and went to work. I used the chain stitch in 6 strands on the hair and the stem stitch for the rest of the design. I used just 2 strands of embroidery thread for the more intricate squiggles.

This pillow was a gift, but I'm going to whip up a few more for our house...

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Bazaar Bizarre Boston 2008

I'm going with the better late than never philosophy on this entry... Way back in the beginning of December I was a vendor at Bazaar Bizarre Boston and had an incredible experience. This was my first year participating in the event and their first year at a new venue... The Castle on Arlington Street in Boston. It was an unbelievable event...well organized and a really cool venue. Shoppers were literally lined up for blocks and the buzz was that many waited for up to 45 minutes in falling snow to see our wares. Thank you to those who waited and shopped and all of the sweet feedback I received. I always want to tell people how much it means to hear your feedback... inspiring me to keep working in my craft and develop new ideas. Thank you!

Monday, December 29, 2008

In Circles

The studio has been a flurry of activity with little time to post images of completed projects, but along the way I have snapped some shots for sharing later. These pillows were for Z's new couch in her cozy library. I am falling in love with more natural fibers including linen...perfect for applique and embroidery. The only hiccup in this project was the mysteriously disappearing circle template. I had to run out and pick up a new one because in my studio it has somehow become an indispensable tool. So, circle template #3 is tucked in safely next to my template collection and numbers 1 & 2 are playing a sneaky game of hide and seek somewhere in the house...

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Belated Wishes

Wishing you and yours a belated, but none-the-less wonderful holiday season! There has been marshmallow and fudge making, present wrapping and unwrapping (much more fun!), celebrating, time with family and friends, cooking and EATING and finally napping...

The marshmallows were a huge hit and the three of us enjoyed some hot chocolate with bobbing clouds of melting goodness this afternoon. They are surprisingly easy to make...check out this clever DIY video and make your own!

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Advent Calendar...

So, in a last minute rush I put together an advent calendar for Kolya... I've actually been tossing around ideas in my head for the last couple of weeks, but hadn't come up with an idea that I really loved. I have a clipping in one of my idea books that I love, but that involved knitting 24 little mittens with numbers on them and I've never even once knit a regular sized mitten... so that idea is put on hold for a more ambitious year. I wanted to come up with something clever that fit with our aesthetic and this is what I came up with. I put together 24 tins and used heavy duty ceramic magnets to attach them to the fridge. These tins were actually snatched from my Simply June supplies, so they already had my label affixed... no problem... I picked up some printable magnet sheets at my local office supply store and printed out the numbers and cut them out by hand. This way I can easily take them off if I need to use the tins for another purpose. (It mostly just made me happy to print my own magnets...) So, now some of the tins hold stickers, pieces of candy, a note to look somewhere for a little gift that is too big for the tin and notes with special activities listed such as going to the library to pick up Christmas books for a special story time... I spread the activities throughout the month and this way we will be sure to do all those fun little holiday activities that sometimes get lost in the frenzy of the season...

Monday, December 01, 2008

Bazaar Bizarre Boston

Come visit Simply June at Bazaar Bizarre this Sunday in Boston! Check out their new venue at
The Castle on Arlington Street... This is going to be a really fun, music and shopping!

If you don't live in the Boston area, make sure to check out our Etsy shop ... this week to get your Holiday Shopping done. We are taking all of these items and more to the show, so you don't want to miss out!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

Wishing you and yours a wonderful Thanksgiving! We have a special day that we celebrate in the Simply June household on the day before Thanksgiving. Three years ago today, we first learned the name of our son Nikolai after months and months of the adoption process. His first Thanksgiving home, I wrote a special poem to share my thoughts with him and our families. I'm sure I've shared it here before, but I'll share it again because it is good to give thanks...

It was a year from today that we first heard your name
Saw your face
Heard your laugh
Allowed ourselves to dream...

In those days and weeks before we held you in our arms
Before we saw your face
Heard your laugh
Held you close and warm

We thanked God for His children
For the son he gave to us
Born half way around the world
Clearly meant for us

We thank God for you on this THANKSGIVING DAY
And we pray for the others that are still waiting today
That their forever families will soon hear their name,
See their face, hear their laugh and allow themselves to dream.

Also keep an eye out on the Simply June Etsy shop as I will be updating it in spurts throughout the weekend... there are already some new goodies in there now.