Okay, the workshop is now available over at Creativebug. It's part of the subscription, or you can buy it as a single class. And you can watch a little preview right here. Just click on the photo. Woot!
My newest video workshop is almost here over at Creativebug! It will be up Thursday, April 25th. I'm so excited to have this one out there. I'm showing how to make a camisole and undies from an old t-shirt. I did a similar project years ago for BUST magazine and am thrilled to offer this much more detailed how-to. The cool thing is you make the pattern yourself from your own favorite undies and cami—so no worries about trying to guess your size or anything. I hope you all start digging through your old shirts. The larger the t-shirt the better, FYI. When the class is available it will be right here on my instructor page.
They really deserve to win. You can vote right here. Please vote! Voting closes the end of the day this Thursday, April 25th. I know I say this every time I mention their name, but I just can't tell you how wonderful it is working with these people and how continually impressed I am with the quality of workshops they offer.
When we were doing the painting for our paper mache a bit back, a whole new project was invented during the clean up—homemade wrapping paper. With the leftover paint and the scrap newspaper dozens of wrapping paper sheets were made. They left them out to dry, which took up a lot of room. On a nice day, drying outside was better, but I neglected to weigh them down with rocks, so then there was a chasing-painted-newspaper-around-the-yard fiasco. The papers got rolled up tight after they dried and are used for wrapping gifts and other crafts. They really are pretty. I love the modern two-color one here.
I finished Mr. Penumbra's 24 Hour Bookstore (a quick read—not too deep character-wise but very entertaining) and am now reading The Snow Child. Thank you again for that amazing list and even more book suggestions in the comments of that post.
A big thank you so much for all your Facial and Perfume Oil orders. I just got a big batch of them. Alicia, you rock. I am working hard to get them out the door. Right now it's taking me about 4 days to fill the orders—thanks so much for your patience. Also, for those of you that have ordered Facial Oils in the past, I now use a cap on the bottles and suggest you keep your dropper out of the oil for storage, because some of the rubber droppers have broken down over time making a sticky mess. If your dropper ever starts to look funny, take it out and let me know, I will send you a new one.
The bombings in Boston are so shocking and horrible, I'm not even sure what to say about it. But I have to say something. I am sending healing thoughts to everyone in pain there, especially when I meditate. This short video has helped me focus. I really appreciate Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche and his books and teachings.
My newest workshop is over at creativebug. This class is a little different than what I have taught before—it's all about /journaling/ record keeping/documenting everday family life in a non-traditional, messy, free-spirited way. It was so fun to do and I sure hope you all dig it. There's a short preview you can see for free right here (click on the image in the link.)
This workshop is available as part of their subscription or as an a la carte option, meaning you can just buy one class at a time. The new a la carte option is available for all my classes now, so if you were holding off because a subscription wasn't the right fit for you, here's another choice. Yippee!
Once again, I feel so lucky to be working with the amazing people at creativebug. Their genuine passion for what they do is so evident in their work.
You can watch me discuss baking soda, apple cider vinegar, and no more dandruff right here. I was interviewed by the funny and friendly Jenny Hansson, our local KOIN channel 6 reporter, and it aired two nights ago.
Thanks for recording it Grammie!
If you want more information, here's a very clear easy-to-read post on exactly how to use baking soda instead of shampoo. I didn't write this, but have linked to it before, and it covers everything.
I now have video workshops over on creativebug!
It's been so great working with them. They came up here to Portland at the end of the summer to shoot one of my classes along with my instructor trailer—which is about 2 minutes long and made Grammie tear up—you can see it here, click on the banner.
I went down to SF in September to shoot more workshops in their studio. The whole crew was great to work with. I can't say enough good things about them. All their workshops are so professional, I was blown away when I first saw them. And the instructors! It's an all-star group of teachers over there—I am so flattered to be in their company.
You can see little teasers of these classes in the links. In the full length workshops, I don't swear and I talk about how much I stink.
Creativebug works as a subscription—you get access to ALL the classes to watch unlimited times, for a monthly fee. This subscription model is ideal for trying new crafts because you already have access to all the workshops. You think you are just a sewer? Try some jewelry making! Grammie immediately started creating gorgeous mixed media art with vintage family photos and beeswax after watching Courtney's wonderful workshop.
Added awesome bonus—they gave me a special promo code, "PUMPKIN", that I can give to you. It will deduct $10 off any subscription package you buy!
That's what I'm talking about! Holiday gifts galore. And for your fellow crafters— a gift subscription would be a swell idea, too. Or a subscription for a school/club auction?
I have more workshops coming, I will let you know when they are available. I am super proud of these, I hope you all dig them.
I've been having so much fun getting these oils together to sell. They are over here in my etsy shop. They are available individually and as a sweet little boxed set (at a special price!) so please head on over and read about them. I've written a pretty long description.
These, like my facial oils, came about because I wasn't finding what I wanted out there, both in terms of ingredients and price. For these blends I have used only the best essential oils, all organic, which are not always easy to find. Same goes for the organic jojoba oil they are carried in. I love creating my own scents, and in reading and researching this I found that many natural perfumes use absolutes, along with essential oils, in their blends. However absolutes are not used in aromatherapy—which is a passion of mine and maintaining the therapeutic properties of these blends is my first priority. So, the key for me has been learning how to work without absolutes, while still creating sophisticated scents and then balancing the therapeutic properties within that blend. My friends and family have been getting an earful and doing a lot of testing for me. (Thank you!)
So, The Lovely Floral Perfume Oil smells divine and helps settle an anxious brain and The Tension Relief Oil helps get rid of bad headaches. That's the short version. I love them and hope you do to. And I hope to add more perfume and treatment oils soon.
There's still plenty of time to place orders before the holiday madness. How about a Custom Birthchart? I just finished one for someone born in 1911.
Or perhaps a bottle of Organic Facial or Hair Oil for the cold winter months? How pampering! Or DIYers, make a ton of beauty/healthcare potions for all your loved ones yourself using the handy booklet and labels you can print out when you purchase eMailorder #11.
Regarding the Facial Oils-
A few people have asked me what cleanser I use with my Facial Oil. I use the Oil Cleansing Method, which I make. I considered selling an organic cleansing oil, and I still might, but it sure is easy to make yourself. The directions and recipes are all on the site I link to. I switched to this cleansing method because my old cleanser was too stripping once I started to regularly use my Facial Oil as a moisturizer, so now I use an oil to cleanse and an oil to moisturize.
On another beauty note, I have spent much time pursuing the outstanding hair tutorials at A Cup Of Jo, this one being a current fave.
Here it is and it is a mighty tome. It's HUGE—and so jam packed with wonderful ideas, it's hard to believe. It's The Bust DIY Guide to Life: Making Your Way Through Every Day, by Debbie Stoller and Laurie Henzel.
I am so proud to have a couple projects in this book, like this one here—how to take a band t-shirt and make it into cute underwear. This book isn't just sewing projects, either. There's cooking, gardening, fashion, hair/make-up, you name it. Can I just copy a blurb I read online about it? Because it says it all:
"more than 250 of the best DIY and craft projects from its 15-year history. Organized by category—beauty and health, fashion, food and entertaining, career, finance, travel, and sex—and written in BUST’s trademark brazen and witty style, this quintessential DIY encyclopedia from the quintessential DIY magazine is eclectic, empowering, hilarious, and downright practical, truly capturing the spirit of women today."
There's an interesting behind-the-scenes making of this book on the publisher site for those of you who are craft book/publishing nerds and find the process fascinating, like myself.
For all you local folk (they have online sales, too) Powell's has this book at a discounted price right now and there's an upcoming booksigning event November 5th. You can pre-order a signed copy, too. Here's a list of the upcoming book tour, go see Debbie and Laurie in person!!
Thanks for making such a great magazine for 15 years, Ladies!
I am so excited to be selling these Facial and Hair oils! They are available in my etsy shop with a whole lot of information on what they are, how to use them, why they are so great and what makes the organic ingredients so wonderful for your hair and face. You might want to grab coffee or tea before you sit and read, it's long. There are 3 Facial Oils and 1 Hair Oil, the differences are listed in the descriptions.
I have always loved concocting natural skincare and medicinal products but focused on just making them for myself and experimenting with ingredients relatively easy to buy. Then, with my deep love for publishing recipes and patterns, I put all my experience and research into emailorder #11, so you all could make your own too, using recipes I had tested over a long time.
Fast forward to the mall— a dear friend mentioned a $140 bottle* of facial oil while we were shopping at Sephora, and asked if I knew of it and similar oils, and I said "Yes, and I sell the recipe, and you can make it at home." We got to discussing this and I admitted well no, you can't actually make it with my recipe. My recipe is really good, but I wrote it for myself and the average person who doesn't want to buy 8-12 organic essential and carrier oils to make facial/hair oils. It would cost hundreds of dollars and you would have way too much—enough for a well moisturized army. Also, my friend noted, even if someone could make it, they may not want to. They might rather buy one I had created.
Enough said. I jumped at the chance to source all my dream ingredients, not the ones that I could find at the natural foods store, but all organic (or wildcrafted) hard-to-find oils that are ideal for skin and hair care. This opened up a whole new word of ingredients for me and I blended, tested, researched, and read like crazy. I love these products so much, and even with all the expensive ingredients (one of the oils I use is almost $2 a drop) they ended up costing much less than what they sell for in the high-end skin care lines.
Please check them out and I hope to add more products soon.
*This then lead to a disusscion of prices and skin care and how one might believe a $140 bottle of oil works better, becasue well, you have to—you have spent $140 on it! But really, it's a trick. If it helps, pretend mine are $140 each.
I have been working on this project for about 4 months now. Over the summer I wanted to make each daughter a birthchart with information about themselves—birthstone, astrological sign, birth flower, etc. because I was fascinated with this as a girl, and still am. The girls kept asking me what their birth flower was, or their sign, or birthstone, and I kept having to look it up. So, I starting drawing little pictures, and drawing, and drawing, and drawing and then compiled each chart for them and presented it framed as a birthday gift. They were thrilled. Then my brother received one, and my husband, and at this point I realized I loved creating these. Hand-lettering each name, composing all the little sketches, seeing the reaction to the finished piece—it's magical. It satisfies both my love of drawing and hand lettering and my kooky desire to be a fortuneteller, mystical/magicial-type artist.
I am thrilled to be able to offer these for sale! Each piece is completely unique—based on your name, and date of birth. I hand-letter your name and date of birth, and then compile your chart which is comprised entirely of hand-drawn images, words, and interpretations by me. Then the chart is digitally reproduced and printed out just for you on 8 1/2" x 11" heavyweight art paper. The chart includes:
Each item also has a one-word meaning associated with that image (except the lucky number.) I decided to make these traits positive or neutral. Of course, all signs have shadow sides and negative traits, but no one wants to have "slightly delusion arsonist" written on their custom birthchart. This also makes this a much friendlier gift for children and family.
These are printed on my favorite luscious highly textured paper. This is a black and white piece and the black ink on the textured paper is outstanding. Really. It's hard to even describe. They are $65 each (the frame is not included) and there is even more information about the beautiful paper and ink over here.
I have been really blown away by the reaction I have had by the people I have given them to. I hope you enjoy them!
We are doing some Halloween decorating and busted out the Halloween Garland from emailorder #4. What a handy time to remind you it's available right here, as a PDF, and it comes with an adorable hat pattern, only for a mere $8!
And a free PDF is over here, I made this last year—it's a fun craft project making mildly disturbing pumpkin faces. Fun for all ages! Enjoy!
We have been having fun making supplies for the cooler months ahead. I love having these natural/herbal remedies ready before we need them. And the girls have fun making them, too. And they make great gifts, so I try to make double batches.
These are all made from the eMailorder #11 issue ($8 USD), which has a recipe book you make yourself, labels, and a cheat sheet for handy reference. And it's a PDF, so you can print it right now!
I get all my herbs and supplies (including containers, bottles, and lip balm tubes) that I can't find locally at Mountain Rose Herbs. They also have a ton of helpful information about properties of herbs and essential oils.
I love reading about herbs almost as much as making medicine. After checking out almost every herbal book in the library over the last two years these are the ones I ended up buying and use extensively:
Okay, Autumnal Equinox 2010 (today!)—bring it. We are ready. To celebrate, we will also be making these Caramel Apple Mini-Cakes and will eat some just for you.
I am so happy to be able to Re-Issue eMailorder Issue #7! I think it's a perfect fit for summer. Here's what you will get in this special PDF issue (It's exactly the same as the original, the only difference is that it's a PDF you print at home, so because there's no mailing, it's a bit less expensive. We love that!)
This issue's sewing project focuses on paper foundation piecing which, despite it's fancy look, is PERFECT for beginners. It's an easy and accurate way to make small patchwork blocks, without the tears, by sewing the fabric onto paper printed with the stitching lines to follow. So, if you can sew a straight line (I know you can) you can do this! No measuring!
Here's what you will receive in this jam packed $8 issue:
-The eMailorder Sewing Project: Learning to make foundation blocks with complete directions/patterns. Included are 4 designs
-Illustrated ideas for potential projects with these blocks
-The delightful eMailorder Recipe Card—Rhubarb Blueberry Crumble
-The eMailorder paper project: Kitchen Friend Stick Puppets
-The eMailorder Merit Badge
-And the eMailorder Secret Word (which will award you a secret prize when found and entered onto kingpod)
A sample of one of the blocks made from this issue #7 made by Sarah, of the Small Object
And look! She made hers into coasters! I love these to bits!
Please take a look at the Mailor group on flickr to see some of the amazing projects using these foundation patterns. They are stunning!
You can buy it right here and not to jump the gun, but this technique would be perfect for using on holiday gifts.
And this is a PDF you print at home, it's not sent to you, or even e-mailed to you—just hit "return to kingpod" after you pay for it via paypal and you will automatically get the download. If you forget or have problems just e-mail me. We will sort it out.
Here is Blue Patchwork
And Snowball Quilt, which is a classic pattern I have always wanted to try on a real quilt, and someday I will.
This is the first time I have reproduced watercolor digitally, and the results are amazing to me. I seriously can't tell when looking at these prints if it's a real watercolor or not—the colors and subtle gradations are so well rendered. I am using my favorite crazy-expensive rag watercolor style paper to print on (archival and all that) so it has a thickness to it which feels really nice. You can read all the specs for this on the print description.
All 3 are available in my etsy shop.
Okay, getting ready for a birthday around here. Mine. Next week. I am requesting a cake from my family. An Orangesicle Cake. I have named it, but it's up to them to interpret what it will be. I am terribly excited. If you have any recipes (I am thinking orange cake with a marshmallow or 7-minute frosting?) let me know. Maybe a cake with orange marmalade? What I really want is a homemade version of an all-time childhood favorite dessert of mine, which is utterly nasty, I know, but I loved them so much—not the chocolate version but the much less revered Orange Hostess Cupcake.
I needed a new batch of homemade deodorant (featured in the jammed packed issue of eMailorder #11 and a free copy of the recipe is here, but of course, if you buy it you will get so much more!) and it was a bit on the dry side. I found I wasn't using it as much because getting a pea-sized ball from the jar was proving to be difficult, and I was lazy—so I skipped days and started to stink. That's how it goes.
So, I decided to take action and re-melted the deodorant and poured it into mini-muffin tins (lightly oiled) and froze them and banged them out the next morning. They work perfectly! I keep the extras in the refrigerator and keep one in the bathroom, on a little dish, and get it slightly damp with water before I use it and it's so much easier than digging in a jar. I think I added too much shea or cocoa butter this time—because it was just harder, but now I wonder if it would work better this way all the time.
When I first published this recipe many people asked if they could pour it into an empty deodorant container, with the dial. I had never tried this, but now I think it would work great. Especially if you slightly increase the butters, which make it more solid. I have been using this for so long I don't have any empty deodorant containers lying around. These pucks work great, but it looks like you can get empty containers online. Or these? But I think reusing an old one would be so much easier.
And, I have been rockin' some slightly 1940s vintage hair styles lately and need to report that the all natural hairspray that I have a recipe for, again, in the same issue, is up to the task. Three huge bonuses—It has no lemon juice (lemon juice is not so so good for dark hair) and doesn't need to go in the refrigerator and won't spoil. Outstanding! I might have to experiment more and see just how high my hair can go with this. If I do, I will report back for sure. With photos.
Unrelated: I have extended Alice Apron theme over on Tie One On—so, now you have until June 1st to get the aprons done. Yippee!
Here I am on live television (I was on April 1st, last week) showing a project from my book, Bend The Rules with Fabric—Painted Toile. I love being on this local morning talk show, AM Northwest. I grew up watching it, the hosts are funny as heck, and it is a really good time. Thanks guys! This clip is about 4 minutes long and Dave totally cracks me up, as usual.
I am very pleased to announce that eMailorder #11 is here. Available right now for you to download and print at home (it's a PDF) today! In this huge 14 page issue you will receive:
Here's a close up of two of the many labels for you to print, cut-out, and stick to bottles, tins and jars. I like to use just regular paper and a glue stick for this.
16 recipes! Can you believe it? Here's what's inside:
Mullein Oil, Shampoo and Detangler, Facial Oil, Eye Compress, Herbal Toner, Vapor Rub, Facial Cleanser, Bugs Don't Like Me Balm, Favorite Tea, Hair Spray, Lip Balm, Baby Bottom Spray, Plantain Poultice for Stings, Magic Tooth Cleaning Solution, Deodorant, and Elderflower Cough Syrup.
Thanks eMailorder members, and don't forget to hit that "return to kingpod" button to get the PDF, it's not e-mailed to you. Just shoot me an e-mail if you mess this up, no big deal at all.
I am very excited to be headed to Seattle to The Quilting Loft this Thursday for my book signing, and also to see some friends, do a little shopping, and have some quality time with the delightful Miss Emily, who will be accompanying me on this road trip.
I'm not even going to say how long it's been since I have been to Seattle (6 years! And we used to live there. For shame!) or how long it's been since I have been overnight somewhere without at least one of my children (Never! Unless the 5 hours between being in labor and having a baby counts.) So excited! I think I will feel like I'm in college again. Minus the super-cheap food, over-plucked eyebrows, and excessive flannel.
At the event, I will be giving away a tote bag with my book and my labels, chocolate, and of course there will be treats, silly antics and much tomfoolery. Please come and say hi!
I made this cake for our new house this weekend. We have been in our house for one year now (it's not a new house, being born in 1968, but it's new to us) and we thanked our house for a good first year. We also shared what we liked best about our house, which was the bunk beds, so said the children. This is funny because we had the bunk beds in the old house too, but you know how it goes. Pete likes the yard (as do I) but my favorite feature is a bathroom off of our bedroom. Oh, how I wished we had that wonderful luxury when I was pregnant 3 times, lugging up and downstairs 5 times a night having to pee. I almost considered sleeping in the bathroom.
Moving on, we ate the chocolate cake and I made a glaze instead of frosting. I found myself wondering why I don't always make glaze instead of frosting. I am not a huge frosting fan, but glaze I love! I kept the extra in the fridge to heat up and use on just about anything. Fruit, ice cream, crepes, you name it.
The cake recipe (my favorite chocolate cake recipe ever) is here in this PDF cheat sheet I made a long time ago and the glaze is simple and very forgiving—
6 oz chocolate chips with about 1/2 cup heavy cream.
You heat the cream, pour it over the chips, let it melt, stir it up, and pour in on the cake.
Joanne's is selling McCall's and Simplicity patterns for $1.99 until Wednesday (this was in our local paper, but I assume it's all over? Not sure, so call your local Joanne's first so you don't swear at me later.) I am going to stock up. Seriously, I never regret buying patterns when this sale hits, because my favorites always go out of print! I have marked down this blouse for sure.
This is a fun issue that is all about cross stitch. And don't worry if you haven't done it before—it includes a helpful how-to, perfect for beginners.
Here's what you get:
Just in time for the holidays! The 3 mini-cross stitch projects would be lovely gifts/holiday ornaments which wouldn't take too long. Also, a nice gift might be this PDF, all printed out, with some linen and some thread all wrapped up pretty for that special someone who would love a project to start. I love giving craft projects as gifts, not necessarily finished items, you know? Less work for me and I like giving the gift of creating something.
You can buy it here ($8) and don't forget to hit "return to kingpod" after you pay. If you forget, just e-mail me. And this is a PDF, not anything that is mailed—instant gratification!
Details are here and hope you can come by!
(I have a new fall banner and new links up, too.)
This Thursday I will be at Bolt for a book signing! I will show examples from my book—with tips, hints and humorous stories, and then we can all chat, hang out, and one of you will win this tote full of Bend The Rules Love! It contains supplies, a copy of my book, fabric from Bolt, the Bend The Rules Gift Labels—how cool!
Please come on out, I'd love to see you!
Thursday, November 5th at Bolt (Bolt has a cool blog, too, just so you know.)
2136 NE Alberta St · Portland, OR 97211 · 503.287.bolt
**I will be in Seattle on December 3rd at The Quilting Loft for a book signing, too.
I've been working on these 3 hand-drawn prints for a long time now, and I finally finished them! I am quite happy. There are printed on super fancy heavy-weight archival watercolor paper—you won't be disappointed. There are three in this series. Silvija is shown here (the frame is not included.)
This one is titled Come Home.
Okay, I will be at Powells this sunday for a book-signing. I'm pretty excited. There will be a question and answer portion (Questions don't have to be limited to this new book of mine, by the way, they can be from my first book too, or whatever you want to ask, actually, as long as it's not really hard questions about science or something.) I also will have the real life projects from the book to look at and discuss and I will also be hosting several cakewalks. Fun! They are small cakes, but still big enough to feel very special as long as you don't share, which I wouldn't.
*Cheating is encouraged, if you can figure out a way to cheat in a cake walk, more power to you. That doesn't mean not buying my book, yeah, I'm on to you. Mariko, our cakewalk DJ, is accepting bribes. I suggest you bring sour candy and/or colorful mechanical pencils and pens.
I am so stinking excited to have these Bend The Rules gift labels on hand for gift giving. These are the ones I wrote about a bit back. I have been using them for all kinds of things—like here on a box. This one says "I totally want to get one of these for myself, so let me know if you don't want it."
on tags, boxes, and cards—on the tag it says, "It's a gift for you! (But secretly for me.)"
And "I made this, just so you know. So, don't say anything mean about it." They are very handy.
They are published by Potter Style and are available in gift shops and book stores and also right here. I say, stock up for your holiday gift giving!
I am giving away a box of labels—leave a comment with your worst gift giving or receiving experience. Preferably handmade in nature. Like, I had a knitting teacher who would knit sweaters for her boyfriends, they would take months and months, and then they would always break up with her right after she finished the sweater.
One of my favorites which is not a handmade gift story, but still amazing, is a dear friend who gave her dad the soundtrack to O' Brother Where Art Thou, but knew he hadn't seen the movie—so she gave him the movie too, but rented it. So, he had to return it to the video store after he had watched it. Classic!
Okay, I will leave this up a couple days and then we will do a random number generator to choose the winner. Thanks!! (And I will be giving away 2 more boxes at my book signing at Powell's on the 20th, too.)
Okay--WOW that was a lot of stories! I laughed, and some were so sad! Kind of like a big long This American Life segment. You all are amazing.
Alright—the Random Number Generator has chosen #168. Congrats Cay!
I gave these ridiculously cool ceramic Ghost Cameras to my photographers as thank-you gifts for collaborating with me on my book. (The mighty talented Matt Wong and Alexandra Grablewski.) I now am kicking myself for not getting one for myself. They are designed by Yellow Owl Workshop and made here locally in Portland by Mudshark Studios. I just noticed they also have the cameras at Urban Outfitters, which is awesome, but buying them directly from the artists is even awesomer.
"Burn like a screaming eagle."
From Kelly who says: No, seriously. Giovanni Ribisi signed an autograph for me (that a friend begged him for) with that one. I have no idea what it means, but I can see it in a yearbook for sure.
"Dude! I will never 4get that night at the pits. And dinners at Moxies or lunch at Wendy's. U rock!"
From Cheryl who writes: Sad, but so true. How did we ever think we were intelligent?
From Jen who says: Okay I must have been hanging out with a very immature crowd compared
to everyone else commenting.... in the crease of the binding of almost
ALL of my yearbooks is written:
"I AM WRITING IN YOUR CRACK. DOES IT TICKLE? HAGS!" (Have a good summer.)
Pete (the judge) says:
There were several "crack" quotes (disturbingly.) This one was randomly chosen within that group of quotes.
"The blacksmith and the artist, reflect it in their art. They forge their creativity, closer to the heart."
And Honorable mention:
Lickin' a Lobster for luck-KITH
See you round like a donut.
Okay— these were so fippin' funny we were dying reading them!!! Thank you all so much! And thanks to husband who took his job very seriously, it was a lot of quotes to read. It was pretty much all we talked about since Tuesday.
Stay tuned for another giveaway at the end of next week. Have a hot weekend, but stay kool. Later Vader!
(I'm now trying to work in yearbook quotes in daily life—surely annoying to all around me.)
I am pretty much ecstatic to announce that my new book, Bend the Rules with Fabric: Fun Sewing Projects with Stencils, Stamps, Dye, Photo Transfers, Silk Screening, and More is now available. I haven't been out to see if it's in the shops yet, but I know the ship date is today, so if you pre-ordered, you will get it soon. It will also be in all the big chain bookstores (Borders, Powells, Barnes and Noble) very soon, if not already, and hopefully your local independent bookshop will have it as well. If not, please ask them to order one for you!
I am also thrilled to tell you that in about 5 days (on September 1st, to be exact) these Bend the Rules Gift Labels will be available from Potter Style. These have the copy I used years ago for the holiday labels I made as a PDF. I am thrilled to have them professionally designed and published by this fabulous imprint. They are printed on thick label paper and come in the nicest sturdy box. The packaging is really impressive. They say things like, This seemed like a good idea at the time, but now I'm not so sure. And, I totally want to get get one of these for myself, so let me know if you don't want it. I'm going to show and tell about these more in the next week or so, but I thought it would be really lame to wait until September 1st to tell you about them. If any of you want to buy both the labels and my new book right now at the same time—the combined shipping would save you a little dough. Just sayin'. I will give away 3 boxes of labels when I get them—so stayed tuned for that.
And speaking of giveaways:
You all are amazing and there is no way I would have ever been able to write my two sewing books and do what I do without all of you reading, commenting, and giving me support. BIG thanks to you all. I want to give away 3 signed copies of the new book here on the blog and I feel very strongly about personally inscribing a cheesy quote in the front. So, please leave a comment with your quote of choice (I'm thinking yearbook style—like a quote from a movie or from your favorite heavy metal song) and if your quote is chosen, you will get a free book with your ridiculous quote written in the front. Awesome! The only rule is no Pink Floyd lyrics—that's way too easy.
I am going to let my husband choose from the quotes, so you all can send any complaints to him later. This is a 24 hour thing, so by this time tomorrow I will close comments and get out my sharpie.
Thanks you guys!!!
Okay, I have closed comments, thank you so much! Pete has his work cut out for him. These are so good, I love the year book jargon! I will report the 3 winning quotes very soon. Thanks for all the new book and new label love!
I was so flattered and excited to put together this Guest Curator bit for Etsy that you see above here. I love their blog, The Storque, and all its features, how-tos, interviews, and whatnot. Etsy is so flippin' huge now and their blog helps me feel like I can get my arms around it. The theme I chose was "Summer at the Beach." Of course, I love everything I chose immensely, please check these items out.
I also have a new podcast interview up over at Craftcast with Alison Lee. This is a really fun eclectic show she has—a little bit of everything. My interview is in the middle, right after the song. Alison is amazing, and we talk about my new book coming out, keeping my blog real, and the merits of blogging the mundane. It's always great talking to her.
And thanks for participating in the clog/sandals socks poll! Who knew? Well, now we know. I love the poll thing so much, I will try not to abuse it.
Easter is approaching and the girls' heads continue to grow, which is a good thing, I know. So, new Easter bonnets are in order. I am using my handy bonnet pattern (conveniently displayed above) which is also for sale. This pattern comes with 3 sizes—baby, child, and adult. Last year I also made a variation without the brim, as shown here, and was thrilled with the storybook cuteness of it. You can see more bonnets made up from this pattern in the flickr mailorder group.
I think for Easter this year a neutral linen would be lovely for the bonnets, with a sweet calico lining. Then we can wear them when we make our butter. Okay, really, no one in the house digs the butter making as much as I do, but they sure eat it up with no complaints. I think I need to try the jar method, so they can actually get into it more.
I have a new print for sale. I drew this a bit back and am super excited to see it printed all fancy on this wonderful heavy watercolor stock I am using. It's almost like a board, it's so thick and the colors are rendered so nicely. I feel a comic coming on very strongly. This piece is called Nurture.
Hey, thanks for the paper cutting love!
So, a few of you asked in the comments how to do this, or where to learn how. Well, I can't pass up the opportunity to direct you to eMailorder #8 where you will find directions specifically written for first time paper cutters. You'll get 4 awesome paper cutting patterns (if I can say that about my own designs, which I just did) and a recipe sure to delight. Please note the little heart design there, perfect for your special valentine, it's just the right size for a card.
This is a PDF that you print out at home—it's not mailed.
I am sincerely excited to present to you eMailorder #9! This is a PDF file you download and print at home. It's not mailed to you. So, that's sad if you are missing the old red envelope, but happy if you want it right away—way cheaper for everyone!
In eMailorder #9 you will find:
It's a mere $8 and It's right here. Please note the fine print about hitting the "return to kingpod" button after you pay for it with paypal, otherwise the PDF won't be sent to your computer (just e-mail me if this happens, no worries.)
Thank you kindly,
Your eMailorder Secretary
I made this paper cut for a special birthday girl earlier this month. Those January b-days are so sneaky.
It's monday and I need more of the weekend. I have a ton of projects on deck—some involving fake fur. What the?
Even more exciting, I am 99.9% done with eMailorder #9! It will be available very soon as a PDF download to print and sew at home and there's even a special video tutorial companion to it. Someone take my Flip away from me. Woot!
I hope everyone had a good Turkey Day. We sure did. My cousin's wife made the most amazing sweet potato dish ever. When I get the recipe I will post it. It is life changing.
I am thrilled to have a project included in this great new book, Handmade Hellos: Fresh Greeting Card Projects from First-Rate Crafters, put together and edited by the amazing Hello Lucky sisters. I have been a huge fan of their letterpress cards for years. They have a great book here, full of amazing talent. I am super flattered to have been asked to contribute a card design.
Here's my project in the book—an ornament card. Miss Delia graces the page there. Please check out this book and buy it. It's full of great projects and would be a wonderful gift for your crafty friends.
Next up, I am in BUST magazine this month (Oct/Nov) with a deodorant recipe. It's a star-studded crafty issue—Alica's book is featured along (with an apron how-to), and The Small Object has a card project in there, from the Handmade Hello Book, coincidently. There's a great round up of homemade craft projects for easy holiday gifts—it's a great issue
I also was pleased to be interviewed by Collectors Weekly about my apron collection and vintage clothing passion. I have said it before, this site is amazing and huge. If you ever need gift ideas, inspiration, or just want to spend hours researching, please take some time to check out this amazing resource. The interview is long (you know how I can talk) but I was able to bring up both vintage aprons and Blade Runner in the same interview, so that's something, anyway.
Like I need an excuse to make another cake—Bend-the-Rules Sewing turned 1! Last month actually, but the book had my 3rd child's b-day to compete with and that is one tough baby. Here's just a smattering of some recent projects from the BTR flickr group. Completely awesome. I get giddy every time I am over there looking at all the amazing projects. Please click on this mosaic to get to see the photos individually.
So here's some book pimpin': The flickr group is now up to a whopping 1700 members with over 3400 images of items made from the book. There are discussion questions galore and great vibes—thank you so much for participating and making this such a cool group. The book went into it's 4th printing in June and is now (or soon) will be carried at your local Michael's, which is thrilling!
And the second book is almost done. Here's a sneak peek that I shouldn't be showing. I have about 2 weeks before it's all due—so I am crazy, which is why I am doing things like making my own deodorant. I am super excited by the huge range of projects in the next book, including this hand printed fabric using a technique I wanted to call "Look Ma, it's an easy silk screen method with no photo emulsion!" but that's kind of a mouthful.
Okay you crazy sewers, BTR just went into it's third printing this week!!! Woo-hooo! I am so proud and excited—thank you!!! It's funny, many people have asked (or suggested to me) that writing a book is like having a baby. It's not. I did both at the same time, and it's really not the same. Writing a book will not give you swollen ankles. However, that book also won't smell good. But, one similarity is—once you put them out there, the book or baby, they have a life of their own. I love it when I get compliments on my book (or my babies) and try not to take it too personally when I get criticism. (Ugh.) Ultimately, it feels like they have less to do with me, and more to do with themselves and how people relate to them. Enough of the baby/book analogy! You can see the life Bend-the-Rules Sewing has over on the Flickr group. There are more than 2000 photos now—seriously!! Never in a million years did I think I could help/inspire sewers to make so many things. The discussions and question topics are so great too—and I just added a topic regarding what sewing machine to buy for you newbies, so hopefully that will spark some good recommendations. Please visit this group, look at the photos, upload your own, and ask your sewing questions. I visit often, and the ever diligent group members are super fast (thank you!!) so someone will help you out lickety split.
Okay, in other news, I just finished up an e-mail interview at mamazine, thank you Amy. I try to not be too repetitive. And my blog b-day (3 years!) is today, or tomorrow, not sure. I wanted to do a give-a-way or some cool PDF thing, but haven't gotten to it yet. Um, you saw Alicia's amazing dishtowel embroidery designs she posted as PDF for free, right? Can I just use that as my gift? Alicia, I will bring you caramel corn that has been on fire, okay?
And, when not starting a fire in the microwave (I didn't really) I am in the middle, in a dead heat ,actually, of working on book #2. Yup. I am very very excited about it. It's going well and taking up all of my brain time and craft time and everything in between. Oh, the time management is hard—it's like blood from a turnip, man. I still hope to squeak out some Easter dresses and all that, but there has been not much play and a lot more work around here. Good work, but work nonetheless. Creative work, which at times can be an oxymoron.
So, the Blog Birthday. It's all such a trip and I am not feeling particularly articulate right now (obvious?) but it's safe to say almost everything in my life, creatively, has changed since I started this blog and my kingpod site before that. Thank you all for reading this blog and buying my book, and laughing at me. I have come to realize that my two favorite emotions are humor and empathy. I think they go hand in hand. Oh, I am worried this all sounds cheesy! (Two kids have a fever today and I am still trying to avoid sugar so I am a bit crazy. I should edit this, but I am not going to.) Anyhoo, it's all good. That's what I mean to say. Blogging is fun and writing book #2 is fun (remind me of this in 3 months) and seeing all the BTR projects on flickr is WAY fun. So, thanks you guys, very much.
It's here! Please head on over to kingpod to get yours now. In this special PDF issue you will get 4 paper cut designs, along with helpful directions and a mailorder recipe. I hope you enjoy cutting these as much as I did
Print these out at home on any color paper you like. Now you don't have to worry about transferring the paper cut design. How handy! And, what a lovely Valentine's Day gift these would make!
A brief note to special Mailorder subscribers-
The last issue for subscribers was #7. . .so you have them all. I know, number 7? This is because the first subscription round was 3 issues, and the second was 4. . . hence the silly 7 number, so this # 8 is a new issue and a pdf only. No worries, the red envelope has not gone away, we are just trying some different formats for fun and excitement. Like, we need more around here.
It's pretty much the same Halloween decor here as last year, but I still have to show it. This garland is from mailorder #4, the one with the earflap hat pattern,
and I realized while moving around boxes last night that I have about 20 left. It's a great one, with a pumpkin spike cake recipe card and cool paper projects for Halloween. E-mail me if you would like one (they are $12 which includes shipping)
I am getting a new camera-see that weird purple?? My girl M gave me the lovely porcelain faux bois vase lurking back there. I love it so much.
These are new. Halloween Sonny Angel Kewpie dolls to add to my collection, from the eggplant of course. So flippin cute and funny, boy parts and all.
I also am now organized enough (new print run) to sell bonnet patterns wholesale, so if you have a brick and mortar shop or an online shop and want to sell some, please send me an e-mail! Thanks!
Here's an update from the crazy world of Bend-the-Rules Sewing. I am super excited to announce a booksigning at the glorious Portland fabric shop, Bolt. I am sure all you Portland sewers already know Gina, but if for some reason you don't please come by. Her selection of fabrics is outstanding and it's just a dang cool store. The signing will be in about a month (I will blog about it again in a few weeks) and I will be there along with no less than 3-5 dozen donuts. Now if that's not a temptation -- come on. . . I'd love to see you! And bring some projects to show and tell!
We are really close to hitting 1000 photos on the Bend-the-Rules Sewing
group on flickr! (I'm gonna make a cake and eat the whole thing when we hit 1000, I will take photos.) The projects keep coming in and they are
continuing to blow my mind. Look at the Puppet Theater from domesticali. Just awesome. This is one of my favorite projects in the book and I am thrilled people are actually making it.
Here's an n adorable Sweet Wee Jacket and Woodland Elf Hat from Bertha79 (Look at the booties!)
An ingenious fabric box from sharon-lizette (Her own clever design.)
to house these way cool Mixy Matchy Napkins!
And the coolest Baby Bib ever? I think so. From leyvadiana. Her other BTRS projects are stellar too, check them out. And is craft blog photography getting more amazing each month? I think so, I need a new camera, man. Don't miss the discussion section of the flickr group is growing everyday. It's full of great information--not just BTRS topics, but general sewing topics as well. I really appreciate all your love for the book in the discussions (Thank you!!) and your truly helpful criticism too. (Like, I totally hear you that making enlargements of the patterns suck. Word. I will pass that along to the publishers.)
In other news about the book, I just got word that it is being printed in Polish! Znakomity! I couldn't be more thrilled.
Lastly, I have a new podcast interview with Alison Lee on the excellent Craftcast. This interview is a bit different than my others. I talk more about my crafty/artistic process and about blogging, and it's only about 30 minutes long, not 1 1/2 hours like my other ones. (gads.) Alison's show has different segments which make for a nice variety. She talks a bit, reviews a movie, shares a song (a tearjerker) then I am interviewed. . .and I get all woo-woo and arty, so prepare yourself. Thanks Alison!
After a series of odd mishaps, user errors, and bad luck, The Bonnet pattern, (as originally published in Mailorder #2) is finally here! It comes in 3 sizes; baby, child and adult and is perfect for keeping little ears warm this fall. You can see photos of the bonnets made up over here on the flickr mailorder club. I find it especially thrilling to see so many adult sizes made up.
When I first designed this pattern, I never thought it would be so popular, but I also didn't realize how hard it is to find a basic, non-poofy, bonnet pattern. This is close fitting and very sweet--hope you like it!
Bonnets for everyone! You can get your very own pattern right here.
Next week my book, Bend-the-Rules Sewing, comes out! It's been such a crazy month. So exciting and so overwhelming. . . all in a good way. Never in a million years did I think, while I was working on this book almost 18 months ago, that I would be having a baby the same week the book hit the stores. The crazy game of life, I tell ya!
These are some of my favorite photos. I love all the photos in the book so much, I still pinch myself when I look at them. My photographer, Alexandra Grablewski, shot this all with film, not digital, and the result is lush photos with such depth and warmth, they make my heart flutter.
I hope you all enjoy this book. I smile big when I look through it, and I hope you will too. My intent is to help, inspire, and demystify sewing-while trying to get a laugh out of you all, and I think I've accomplished that, which feels pretty awesome. I have heard a few of the pre-orders have landed already and you can find it online and in major bookstores near you soon. The official release date is June 19th. And I have set up a group on flickr to share images of projects and tips-please join up and show and tell.
And, most importantly, thank you all for reading this craft blog and for all the support you have given me. I say this in my acknowledgments and can't seem to say it any better now, so I will just type what is in the book:
Handmade is where it is at. It has the real heart and soul, and craft bloggers are at the forefront of this movement. Mining sites and images all over the world, craft bloggers can spread information and enthusiasm with incredible force and speed, and they are the pulse of the new DIY movement. I would have never written this book had it not been for the amazing time I have spent getting to know other craft bloggers and maintaining my own craft blog. For everyone out there reading and contributing, I thank you for being part of this amazing movement.
I bow down to you all. . . thank you so very much.
Oh, my brain. This recipe card that comes with the mailorder #7 has an omission. For the topping, it doesn't state exactly how much butter to use. . .it should say 1/2 stick of butter (Which is 4 tablespoons.) Sigh. I blame the heat, this big baby in me, and my mushy brain. Deepest apologies!
Up this week in our kitchen is strawberry shortcake. I was inspired by this over at the small object and although I don't really need strawberry shortcake more than once or twice a season, I do need it. And I have this handy whip cream canister, don't you know, making several helpings in a few days that much easier. That gadget is seriously dangerous.
Hello and happy Thursday.
It's hot here and people are excited and also freaking out. Lots of guys walking around shirtless all of a sudden. I always wonder, do they actually leave the house with no shirt on? Or do they decide, mid-walk, to take it off? I never see shirtless guys carrying their shirt. . .I think they must tear it off and throw it away, maybe in the bushes, and then give a really big yell or something. That's what I would do.
You can buy mailorder #7 right here (paypal only) and it's the print overrun (as usual) so there aren't a ton of these, just so you know. Please note the the 2 prices: one for USA/Canada and one Outside the USA, and please send me an email if your address is different than what paypal has for you. Thank you!
Wow! Okay, you all are crazy crafters! That was awesome. It's going to be a busy weekend. I will e-mail you if I have questions or you will hear from me soon if I said I would invoice you (like if you are in Australia and couldn't make the sale) Thank you!!