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"Where better to care for the soul than in the details of our daily lives?....The soul has an absolute, unforgiving need for regular excursions into enchantment. It requires them like the body needs food and the mind needs thought... An enchanted world is one that speaks to the soul, to the mysterious depths of the heart and imagination where we find value, love and union with the world around us. As mystics of many religions have taught, that sense of rapturous union can give a sense of fulfillment that makes life purposeful and vibrant." ~ Thomas Moore.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Shabby Linens Homemade

 Hello All you Beautiful Blogging Ladies!!

I made a recent recovery from an ailment called "Gotta Have It-itis" lolol. It's a very strange kind of bug because you can be exposed to it sometimes and not get ill, but then others, you get ill very bad very quick! Well I got Gotta Have It-itis a couple weeks ago when I unsuspectingly was exposed to a subtle and soft beauty of comfort that I was not prepared for. :D:D:D
I spoke of it here, from Lauries Heavens Walk blog, and her picture of her own Shabby Napkins is what got me the "bug" lolol.......thank goodness it was a simple bug, and short lived.......


You can read about that in the previous post, but soon I went out and found some nice cotton's at JoAnne's Fabrics and I was quite content actually. Bug wasn't that serious. And I made a set of 8 napkins and have enough fabric to make 16 more, but 8 is more than enough for me and housemate's social life here.

I found these pretties

[and yes, Palomasea, that IS an April Cornell Tablecloth, so lovely it is too.]

and this beautiful soft heavy drapy linen already cut to the size of my table! Classic natural White!



And I knew just what I was going to do, but how to finish it was up in the air. I wanted something simple, but I chose to do the ruffle after all because that is a Shabby Chic Couture style which I did want to go with the napkins, and so I sewed it today and even trimmed it with a thin lace. I left it rough edged and it will fray a bit but that's ok, I can always trim that but I love how it takes the formality out of the linen. I used very very lightweight linen gauze for the ruffle, and I'm very much in love with this beautiful thing and I do not at all feel any less luxurious with my new Homemade Shabby Linens than if they had a namebrand on it! Not at all! I'm very content right now. I am neither cheated out of the nice feel of cotton, nor the beautiful luxurious linen, nor the colors or looks. :D:D:D and hey, for around $30.00, I did good!

I sewed the napkins and washed them and dried in the sun.......they smell great!

 How pretty is that! does it say Spring or Summer?

I cut 8 strips from my linen gauze for the ruffle, double the length of each side of the linen....... I have a so very light 2.8 oz weight linen.....could also be what is called Whisper Linen......wink wink! like from Bella Notte Linens? yeah, that kind of light weight.... :D:D:D

ruffled them and pinned them on to sew.........

Finished, with a very thin lace trim......I'm in love people !

Is this original by Rachel Ashwell that much better than my own? Nope.  I simply love how simple it was to create a thing of beauty like hers.......hers is definitely sewn better but mine is just fine with me :D:D:D and Rachel is so inspiring. As are bloggers who create their own versions of "Shabby".

Look at that texture in the sun.....the base is thick and heavy yet soft and drapey, and the napkins speak of cottons, pretty spring and soft colors!


Finally finished, folded and ready for that special dining experience.........for summer or spring or anytime!


 Classic linen, yet made casual and pretty with unfinished rough edged ruffles......

 No fuss, single serving setting.......



 Folded until ready for use.......

 I encourage anyone who gets bit by the Gotta-Have-It-itis bug, that if $$ keeps you from getting what you want, never hesitate to make your own, because that is just how the big names began, by making their own. And often it is far more satisfying than buying a name that is both pricey and common. My Linens are unique and just as luxurious and pretty! Don't you think?

 Thank you Laurie for the "bug" ! LOLOL......It was worth it being "ill" for a short time to be made to make do with what is available and with a little effort have every bit of beauty with Homemade Linens!

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Thursday, June 20, 2013

Outdoor Foot Wash

Blogland and blogging ladies are my salvation, truly! I love you all!
I was browsing blogs 2 weeks ago, and some of the parties especially with so many interesting ideas, and one of them had entered a "Wonderfully Made;" Outdoor Foot Wash , which I fell in love with immediately.
I do have a need to organize how my housemate and I clean our feet before entering the house from the gardens because I do abhor dirty floors but we are in and out so often and the rains create a muddy kind of soil which sticks to every bottom of foot wear and it tracks in even when I have strategically placed foot mats to scrub our shoes in sections before entering. It just is not perfect. I realized I did need something to actually clean the feet before entering but didn't give it much thought, until I saw this post. I was excited, Eureka! that was it. I keep a rain barrel by the porch and that would supply the water. I could place it right next to it with just enough space. I need this! LOLOL
I showed my housemate this footwash and asked if we had the wood to do this and he said yes, and showed it to me, yes we had it, and I had 2 buckets of small smooth river rocks I had purchased to make an Acupressure Walking Path in the back, but that never happened. But we did have the wood and rocks and my housemate was willing to put it together for me without the sick face LOL now that he experienced proper tools from making the Potting Bench.lolol

This one is 18" x 16" and put together with simple it is:

our little friend coming over to see what we're doing.....they like to notify us of their presence so they can walk us over to where we keep their feed and feed them LOL.....they literally let us know they are wanting food! lol, but though we took time to follow it out over to the food, it was more interested in what we were doing lolol.

 I used window screening to line the bottom to keep in the small rocks so they don't go through the spaces.

I keep a large ladle hanging by the rain barrel to use to pour the rain water on my feet. Then I bought a runner type bathroom mat to lay on the floor to soak up the extra water as I walk to the door, and then a small towel hanging by the door to dry the feet before walking in. I chose a bathroom mat because I can wash it often as necessary. This system works for me now, I love it! Thank you to Lauren at Wonderfully Made!

sharing this post with Fishtail Cottage Garden Party

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Friday, June 14, 2013

Shabby Napkins Homemade

I resisted.

I did.

Until I saw some pictures, and my resistance went out the window fast. It's like you get bitten by a bug or something and you HAVE TO HAVE IT to get it out! What IS that??!! Well, I had resisted those luscious Shabby Chic Couture Napkins in spring floral prints.....from last year.

I was strong, didn't need them, I said. That was last year.

And then last week,  I visited Heavens Walk blog, and fell in love with her grass! of all things! looking at her last post, "Music in the Gardens". But I went through her older posts and realized I was finally feeling relaxed after weeks of "unsavory" I continued on her blog. Quite the unsuspecting one. I got comfy. I let my guard down. And then, I got bit. I had browsed leisurely through that beautiful blogland and laughing at her adorable wit, and was an unsuspecting host for a bug who latched on and would not let go when I looked at this picture of her napkins....


 It was lightening fast, a sudden shift, a change inside......something was different, and I knew, just knew, I was ill. :D
What the heck IS THAT ??

So what does a sick lady do? I went scouring browsing the net for Shabby Chic Couture napkins. I couldn't afford them as it turns out. Next best thing, her fabrics. Couldn't afford those either. I've been on a severe budget the past year and half. Sooooo, what is this erhm..... "haunted"? :D lady to do? I'm not even going to go into how many hours I spent looking for fabrics I could afford by Shabby Chic and suppliers etc, and I'm not going to tell you how I kept Laurie's picture open on my computer screen for days with just this one picture.....won't go into any of that!

Well I emailed Laurie and told her of my "sickness" acquired from her blog and she understood, Lolol, she'd been sick like that before too :D .....well, we're understood at least. She kindly referred me to a couple of suppliers of fabrics and that led down another rabbit hole.

To cut this short, I decided not to be ''ill'' anymore, I hate it actually, and so I gave up the need for those napkins as they were, and decided to come up with my own. This is a simple thing! And my own version couldn't be that bad! So I dropped the "illness" like an old napkin lol, and off to Joanne's Fabrics I went and I did find some suitable cotton fabrics that would give me what I wanted without the set back in dollars. And they are cotton after all. Though I wanted texture, as in linen, I realized I wouldn't be able to get that in spring floral prints, and the amount of time I'd be using those napkins didn't balance how much energy I had was giving it already, so I had to "settle" for common fabrics and make do.
Well! I did alright I think! I'm happy with 100% cotton in these prints I found and I got enough variety to have my mix n'match "Shabby Chic Couture" Spring Floral Napkins. :D

But Wait! there's' more!......I just love saying that! I make myself laugh LOLOL.....(horrid commercials)

As I walked through an isle of fabrics, there was hanging just the right kind of linen with that thick texture and rough look, though it feels soft and drapes beautifully! Know what I'm talking about? Linen! thick linen. I touched it and I was in love! I picked up the fabric bolt and the piece came was an already cut piece of fabric and it was the perfect size for my table!......then I tried to find the price but the bolt it was on was not the bolt it was cut from so I walked scrambled to the cutting table and the clerk told me if she couldn't find the price, she couldn't sell it to me. Sad face. I asked her for the price of the bolt and it was on sale for $4.99 a yard. Off I went to find another fabric that felt just as luscious. No good....none were. Then something happened. She walked with me to find the bolt my linen piece came from and I said something that made her laugh. Finally she said she could sell me that last piece for the $4.99 price of that bolt it was on! Eureka! Thank YOU Domestic Goddess of Home, Hearth, and Health! LOLOL

The total for the linen was $7.99 and I bought it happily. Now I have my beautifully textured tablecloth which I have to figure out what I'm going to do with the on a ruffle or not....leave it bare and rustic with the edges rough, or not.....or sew some other fabric onto it, I don't know.......any ideas??

Here are the fabrics......8 different ones, 3 in shades of blues and aquas, the rest pinks, all are soft palettes.

 The Linen piece, and I love the selvedge edge......might keep it, but I think it needs something else?? advise?

Individual close ups

 These are ok, not quite Shabby Chic Couture, but all together they are just as pretty and will be fun to use.

and that beautiful linen again.....what to do with the edges? leave them? sew a ruffle? with what?

I'm going to begin sewing these fabrics into napkins today, then will have the set and will update this post with the finished napkins.

Would appreciate feedback as to the tablecloth piece....thank you!

I also found this crochet thingy,  I think a king sized bed lace, from the thrift and I simply COULD NOT leave it there. I thought it would look great over the top of my gazebo, but that is not going to happen. It is rather large though, and I adore the edging, not sure what to do with it, but it is very pretty!

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