Saturday, January 30, 2016

Oh, Deer!

I have more needlework to share, but I can do that later. Besides handwork, I also love animals and nature. :)

Deer are seen almost daily all around our house...
in the front yard late at night, eating the fruit we put out for the birds earlier in the day...
wandering right up to the back yard fence, curiously looking at the beagle / corgi mix that's barking, whining, and wagging his tail at them...
eating acorns that have fallen from the big oak tree beside the herb garden...
watching from the woods, peering from behind the old barn... (see first photo)
and casually strolling through the snow, stopping under the old cedar tree... (photo below)

Our dogs absolutely LOVE to play in the snow! I barely managed to catch Ava in this shot...

 And the birds... they are everywhere!

Have a blessed week!

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Honeysuckle Lane - opening a little at a time

I've finally (re)opened my Big Cartel shop. I realized that I would be paying much, much less by opening my own shop than by selling on Etsy (listing fees, renewal fees, seller fees, etc.) but I am very, very slowly adding things to the new shop. And you can still find a lot in my Etsy shop... it will be a while before I get everything moved.

You can see it by visiting this link: When I have time to read how... I'll change it to without the bigcartel in the link. :)

Yesterday I listed my most recent punch needle designs and already sold one of them, but there are still some items there. You can read all the details about them, too!

I've been gathering some antique velvet frames, getting ready for my heart in hand paper whims love tokens.

Check back in a day or so for more details. :)


Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Maggie's Heart - my latest punch needle design

I've been keeping my designs simple. They are mounted on small blocks of wood and I don't want intricate designs lost in small pieces.

And since Valentine's Day is fast approaching, I thought I'd do several with hearts. The background in this one is a bit geometric, and in a round about way, inspired by a few antique rugs by Magdalena Briner.

So this one is called Maggie's Heart.

Supplies used: Valdani #8 perle cotton, Waverly Inspirations Chalk Paint by Plaid, weaver's cloth, a scrap of wool, homemade beeswax paste, Ultra-Punch

Now, to get busy with puzzle purse Valentines...


Monday, January 25, 2016

Love Grows Here

I've been working a bit sporadically lately, but I have finally finished another Valentine inspired punch needle design. I was also inspired by Frakturs of the 1700s and 1800s.

As usual, I'm using wonderful Valdani perle cotton, #8. Valdani has such a wide range of colors... it's hard to choose when placing an order! This one will also be mounted on a pine board that I've painted with Waverly Inspirations Chalk Paint by Plaid. I just don't have a photo of it on the board, yet.

I backed it with gray wool, although I was very tempted to go with red. I rolled the excess border forward and whip-stitched it with one of the Valdani threads I used in the design.

I'll probably save this one for the Early Work Mercantile update on Feb.1st. Maybe I'll have a few more things to go along with it. :)

Take care and God bless,

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Heart in Hand Love Token ~ A New Punch Needle Design

I've added a new design to my Valentine inspired punch needle collection. This one is a heart in hand love token... how could I not do a heart in hand after making so many out of paper over the years?

I used #8 Valdani perle cotton... I LOVE their colors! Have you tried them yet? There are so many to choose from and I have only sampled a very few so far!

If you'd like to read more about this piece or purchase it, visit my shop >>> here.

We've gotten several inches of snow... I'll share some photos over the next few days.

Take care and stay warm!

Monday, January 18, 2016

Punch Needle Project ~ Finished!

I finished my first punch needle project of the new year... no telling how many more to go. I have ordered more perle cotton colors from Valdani and I can hardly wait for them to get here! :)

I wanted to add some cute mini pom pom trim that I'd seen online, but I was impatient and went ahead and finished this one by folding back the excess weaver's cloth and attaching it to the painted base. I'll use the trim on future projects... I'll have to order some first. What would we do without online shopping nowadays? ;)

The base was painted with Waverly Inspirations Chalk paint... I use MINERAL... a light gray... and then wiped on (and off) a Folk Art antiquing medium. I finished it off with a coat of my homemade beeswax paste. The base is about 3/4" thick, so it sits just fine on its own, but if I wanted to hang it on the wall, it'll be easy to add a saw tooth hanger. It's very lightweight so I am okay with using that type of hanger on it.

I've finally started adding items to my Big Cartel shop. I hope to get moved over to it and eventually close my Etsy shops. I've talked about this for a long time. It just took a while to finally get moving.
Here's the link if you'd like to take a peek.

Thanks for visiting!

God bless,

Friday, January 15, 2016

Punch Needle Projects

Do you save scraps, and scraps of scraps, until they are so small you can't work with them? That's usually what I do... with wool, paper, and wood. I hate to throw anything away if it can be used in a project later.

After making these early style wall boxes and shelves

I had several small pieces of pine left over. And since I don't make very large punch needle pieces, I figured these scraps would make great bases for some new punch needle designs.

So, I am painting the wood bases with Waverly Inspirations Chalk Paint (by Plaid) and doing the punch needle embroidery using gorgeous Valdani Threads.

I think I'll do several hearts... hearts with scalloped borders, hearts in hands, etc.

I'll be back to share more in-progress photos.

See you soon!

Take care and God bless,

Thursday, January 7, 2016

A Heart, a Lollipop, a Whale's Tail, and a Tombstone!

I've been working on more early inspired wall boxes and shelves...

I have so many colors I'd like to try and so many styles, I don't know where to go from here!

I have these finished and listed on my little shop blog.
You can read all the details here.

Do you have a favorite early, primitive shelf or wall box style? I'm interested in learning about more of them if you'd like to share a link or comment.

Thanks for stopping by...

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

2016: The Year of Folk Art

When I sent my last update, the subject was 2016: The Year of Folk Art. At least I think it will be for me. I plan on digging through all my reference books and incorporating 18th and 19th century, early American designs into the mediums that I enjoy doing... needlework, painting, jewelry-making, even woodworking!

Honeysuckle Lane design in-progress using Valdani Threads and National Nonwovens Bamboo Felt

My first designs of 2016 are Folk Art Cuff Bracelets and a Primitive Heart Love Token Shelf. I've got my sketch book handy so when I think of something, I can get it on paper before I forget it! Sometimes a hand-carved design on an antique chest or circles on a penny rug become the inspiration for an applique design... like what you see on the cuffs.

Patterns will be offered at a later date. I'm trying to get collections organized before I actually start making them available.

If you enjoy seeing early American folk art or antiques and primitives incorporated into decor, I recommend the Time Life books series: American Country. Here's a set on Etsy... I bought mine several years back a few at a time, mostly from eBay sellers. By no means do they cover everything, but there's such a variety of information in these books... I love my set!

Do you collect folk art? What's your favorite piece?


Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Early American Inspired Wall Boxes

With my husband being the perfectionist woodworker that he is, I never could talk him into making some primitive wall boxes and shelves for me. He would if I really, really wanted him to but he really isn't into painting wood and then distressing it... at all! You can see some of his past work here, here, and here. He does beautiful work!

On the other hand, I think that I am drawn to the early, distressed, or well-loved style because I can very seldom make something look perfect, so I make that work for me! So for the last few days, I have made a few trips out to Roger's workshop and put together a few shelves myself. I think the first day Roger wasn't sure about turning me loose with all his tools... but the second day he only came to check on me two or three times.

I'd used the band saw and oscillating sander before, but this was my first time with the drill press and table saw. Once he showed me how to safely use them, I got to work!

I found a few designs of antiques I liked and sketched them on kraft paper. Then basically I sketched on the wood, cut the design, sketched a few adjustments, and cut a little more (which I'm sure drove Roger nuts!), hammered in the nails (Roger suggested a nail gun but I wanted nails hammered into the wood), then sanded (some with the power sander but mostly by hand)... then painted, sanded, stained, and waxed with my homemade beeswax paste.

The first one was listed here and has already been sold. I have more ready to paint, and although I have ideas of the colors to use, I'd like to hear your suggestions, too!

The designs from left to right are:
primitive heart love token shelf
whale's tail wall box
tombstone spoon rack
lollipop candle box

Thanks for visiting!

Take care and God bless,

Hand-Crafted Heirloom Baby Bed - Ready and Waiting...

We are less than 3 weeks away from welcoming our little grand-daughter to the world and the baby bed is finished! That's Milo making sure everything looks ok. ;)

Some time back I shared a few photos of it unfinished. It will eventually convert to a toddler bed and then a full size bed, when needed.
The bed is ready and waiting... and so are we! :)

Take care and God bless,