Happily, through reading Design*Sponge, I've discovered ReproDepot; fabrics, ribbons, buttons, and more. My fabrics arrived just one week after I placed the order (Massachusetts to California), and I was given a refund on part of the shipping, as it was cheaper than the original estimate. Efficiency, honesty, and great quality!! Now the only dilema is what to make and where to begin!
The print of the states is called "This Land Is Your Land", and the pink and blue paisley is called "Cornell Small Paisley"; each $6.95/yard. The fabric in the background is called "Looped-film"; it's a substantial weight, 56" wide, cotton canvas, and is a bargain at $9.95/yard.
I think I'll make Marcel some long shorts out of the "states" fabric. And some nice bed-pillows for me out of the paisley.
They also threw in these little extra assorted pieces as a "thank you." I can't recommend them enough.
My older son Jesse walked through the door on my birthday with a potted Delphinium, an enormous bouquet of flowers, and a big grin on his handsome face. I want to give thanks to him by posting this series of photos...
I took the satin ribbons, that were tied around the bouquet, and strung them from our magnolia tree where they dance on delicate breezes:
Jesse's cat Nella likes to go inside of this broken pot to get out of the sun and take her little cat naps:
My Jesse is having some difficult times right now so I ask all of you lovely readers to light a candle and send out liberating prayers for him. Merci to you, and mercy to him.
I like getting late birthday gifts, it extends the celebration...hint, hint!
A package from my Mommy, that was bursting with goodies, arrived at my door yesterday!
Included (seen on the chair below) was something that I was wanting, a new cardigan, in khaki green (one of my favorite colors), and a magenta long sleeved t-shirt (much needed). I like to layer long sleeved T's under short sleeved ones and I needed a new color.
Inside were lovelies: appliqued tablecloth & napkins, bright new dish towels, a glass birdhouse candle holder, an iron butterfly (isn't that a band?) hook (I love hooks), and a photo of my Grammy & Grampy (I took this in Portland, Maine) wrapped in an old sewing pattern paper...
My youngest brother Jon gave me these beauties: a striped knit headband, a beaded cranberry bracelet, and a crescent moon ornament. He has such good taste!
One of the great gifts that I highly recommend is the book The Clothesline. It's full of wonderful memories, tips on caring for antique textiles, recipes, like "Making Lavender Ironing Water", stain removal recipes, and collectibles. There are photos of vintage embroidered laundry bags, and various clotheslines strung around the globe and across the ages.
Living in a rental really challenges your design ability and forces you to get creative in a different way than if it were your own home. There is a horrible swag light fixture in the dining room, with a disturbing mottled glass on it. I got this lovely red wool lampshade on sale for $14 and used it to cover most of the fixture; I like the metal leaf bits that show from above. You may notice that at the moment it is just temporarily supported by some jute string!
Yesterday we spent a little part of the day back in Soquel (in the Santa Cruz mountains). We went to a friend's home to show Marcel three sweet newborn foals. The mama horse in the photo is from Spain and has a dreamy personality.
Then we ventured down the road to a place called Webb's farm. Along the way we met up with him:
I think that he looks just as lovely from the back:
Up at Webb's farm you can buy peacocks, $100 a pair. Such a deal!
I had a "duh" moment yesterday. Marcel and I spent the day at Sky Ball Park in Soquel with our special friends (one of them pictured above with Marcel; we'll call her Cutie Pie). I remembered to bring my camera with me. Later in the evening I recalled that I needed to find something for "Blue" Thursday. Well, let me tell you the reason that they call it Sky Ball Park...the backdrop is a hillside on which three humongous blue balls are perched; like the rock that Indiana Jones runs from "humongous". When we pulled in to park there was one staring us directly in the face. And did I take a picture? Take note; there isn't one posted above. "Hmmm, blue. What can I find that's blue?"
On the upper floors of The Martin luther King Jr. Library in downtown San Jose is the best kept secret. The books of San Jose State College are housed there and included is a sort of rare book collection. Vintage books, that are normally kept in cases or held as reference books only, are allowed to circulate. The trouble is, there are so many amazing books there that I keep adding to my pile and then, because of the sheer weight of them, I am forced to stop. The only thing that would make the experience even better is if they served tea there in the stacks!
On my most recent trip I picked up a book on Persian Handicrafts that is bound in the most sumptuous nubby cotton. It's a book coat rather than a book jacket ! I also got a book on arts and crafts from India that is bound in a hand-done blockprint cotton fabric that is a work of art in itself.
I also discovered designer Josef Hoffman. He was born in Pirnitz, Moravia (now Chechoslovakia) in 1870, and moved to Vienna at the age of 22 to study architecture at The Academy of Fine Arts under Karl von Hasenauer and Otto Wagner.
He was a prolific and pioneering designer who made his mark on everything from furniture to lighting, and tableware to textiles.
One of the things that I like about the book I found on him, titled Josef Hoffman Designs, is that it's filled with a lot of his original design sketches.
He has some incredible lamps, but for some reason I'm having trouble scanning them. Here is an especially lovely vase:
Here is the last thing that I did before I fell into a menstrual migraine hurricane:
I like making origami out of bills to leave as tips at restaurants. You can find the instructions for this one at MAKE blog.
I spent my birthday, June 2nd, at the emergency room with a beyond-unbearable-migraine. Did you know that it is common for the staff at ER's to treat migraine patients as "drug-seekers"? Yes, it's true. I had been treated inhumanely by ER staff so often, and didn't know why until one night I happened to see a re-run of the TV show ER where they revealed this stereotype of the lowly, lower-than-low drug-seeker. Am I using too many hyphens for you? I say, to all you disgruntled and sleep-deprived ER workers, "Let them eat hyphens." Apparently since anyone can claim to have a migraine, people sometimes make false claims in order to get narcotics.
I mean really. It would not be my first, second, third, fourth...well, you get the idea...choice of how to have a happy birthday. Oh yeah, "Hmmmm, what would be the most pleasant thing to do today?" Ponder, ponder. "I know, I'll go down to the ER and lay on the frigid linoleum floor in the waiting room for over an hour, with my kitchen saucepan full of bile, then get lead into the sanitarium, I mean exam area, and proceed to be treated in an increasingly degrading and hostile fashion by each staff person that I encounter in my journey that will span five hours, in order to get the lowest possible dose of morphine (my request) and then spend the next two days recovering from the side-effects of the drug." Wouldn't you want to do that for your birthday treat??
Is this too much reality? I dedicate this post to Aurora, who notes that many blogs can be full of fairytale fluff. I will be back in Cinderella form in no time!