Monday, January 25, 2010

i've moved...


Monday, January 18, 2010

we are one

[sent e-mail to sarah (at) crafthope (dot) com]

inspired by 'the kinks' song,
strangers: ...strangers on this road we are on ... we are not two *we are one* ...

this seemed like the perfect contribution to craft for hope, reminding me that we are all one, as human beings in this universe. united in love. especially in times like this. a dear gift for your beloved this valentine's, with extra special significance.

this little pillow is constructed from 100% wool recycled/upcycled/reclaimed suit coat, and backed with 100% cotton recycled/upcycled/reclaimed light blue knit. a wool i-cord loop is attached for hanging - on the wall, or maybe next year's tree?

scented with soothing lavender essential oil.

the pillow is also stuffed with 100% wool recycled bits (from sweater clippings).

i am sorry to say that i cannot afford to offer international shipping on this because it is prohibitively expensive for me, but i will offer more 'we are one' hearts in my shop with international shipping, and all proceeds to haiti via 'partners in health'. blessings to you and yours.


if you would like to donate an item, please
follow this link for instructions.

if you are shopping, please visit the Craft Hope for Haiti Etsy shop, which benefits Doctors Without Borders.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

as you wish

i hope you recognize the title of this blog from a very favorite book and movie, the princess bride. i wanted to make something for v-day, and then had this divine inspiration.

not only is it made from recycled wool, it is made from a recycled wool suitcoat, and the backside sports one of the suitcoat's pockets (and button)!!! clearly, this would be a brilliant way to give a gift of jewelry, poetry, little chocolates, or any other pocket-sized token. truly one of a kind.

i'm also making some littles. i think it was leftover christmas spirit that made me want to put a hanging loop on the top (wool yarn i-cord). wouldn't it be a sweet ornament? it is backed in 100% cotton denim, this one without pocket.

but the best part of this gift, i think, could be the presentation. how many times a day do we ask our loved ones to do something for us? a glass of water? change the laundry? let the dogs in? let's say your sweetie asks you to turn the lights on, and you pop out of bed, turn the lights on and hand him or her this precious gift, with the words 'as you wish'. nice, right? or, if he or she is not familiar with the princess bride i've made this one too:

it's in the denim, backed in light blue cotton knit (no pocket), reclaimed pants, both of them (100% cotton, of course). all are stuffed with 100% wool bits - recycled from sweater trimmings. more are coming, and possibly to be featured at some local craft happenings! i'll let you know! <3

Saturday, January 9, 2010

birthdate embroidery

now in my shop, custom embroidery! i loved doing the wedding pieces for my newly-married friends this year, and thought a birth announcement embroidery would be just as sweet! i can't remember where i happened upon this cute fabric -goodwill or estate sale, but the little boy and girl figures begged for it! plus, it gives one the very real excuse of needing all the details before finishing up that baby gift.

i made this one shortly after our friends, the fortneys, welcomed graham into their lives. finn's birthday was not that long after, so i thought making matching birthday boys would be appropriate.

the pictures were taken before i had secured the fabric around the edge with stitches. i am also so very pleased that all the materials are reclaimed, recycled, or, as they say, 'upcycled'. there are a limited supply of these available since the fabric is also rescued, but there are plenty of little boys and girls now.

always, if you have an idea for a special birth embroidery or otherwise, don't hesitate to contact me at byhandathome (at) i especially love making things with the recipient in mind, so custom orders are a real pleasure for me. hope you enjoy these!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

safety first

as colden grows, we've been moving our things higher and higher. at this point, little is unreachable, although he hasn't begun moving furniture to climb up and access higher shelves.

but, he has gotten the hang of the doorknobs. at first it was difficult to keep him out of the garage (and all its wonders and terrors), but now he is pretty content to 'leave it closed right now'. and i have to say that it's quite sweet when he hears the dogs whining to come in and lets them in. he closes the door behind them too. sometimes i even ask him to go take care of them! how great is that?

so we thought we might be able to get away without purchasing those plastic door handle covers that prevent children from opening doors while still allowing adult access. then, the other morning, marc woke up and colden was out of the bedroom. (i was still sleeping). with all the christmas lights, cole's fondness for electrical outlets and candles, the occasional stray pin, well. i guess this was a wake up call (ha!). marc proposed the idea long ago for a crocheted cover, and well, it was just easy as pie.

we may not need it for long, or we may need more, but either way it is not going in the landfill ever, beautiful to look at and touch, and didn't cost a dime. hooray!

Monday, January 4, 2010

lessons learned

the new year is a time a lot of us take stock of things, and think about the future. so what have i learned?

for starters, seam allowance. well not just seam allowance, but being a bit more liberal with my fabric. i have the great goal of conservation and re-use always in mind. thus, i tend to scrimp as much as possible. i've found this to be a point of contention again and again. as i continue to craft, i vow to be more daring. i will go ahead and cut into beautiful sweaters that i have imagined into fifteen different projects. i will not fret when they do not turn out as i have envisioned. if you have read the artist's way, you may remember one of the tenets that goes a little something like this: i am in charge of quantity, i leave quality up to the divine (god, goddess, luck, pure inspiration, whatever you believe). i intend to remind myself of this as often as possible, and just keep on truckin'. i will, of course, do my best on quality too. or re-do it fifteen times.

papa's gift from at sunnyside craft fair.

here's another inspirational link, to elizabeth gilbert's talk on creativity and genius. or why we need to talk to fairies. i just loved it (thanks maesie and h2m!). our wishes and dreams for 2010 include: prosperity, creativity, and levity. the same and all the best to you!

Saturday, December 26, 2009

seasons round exchange - light!

presenting: our nature table (aka mantle) with sweet gifts from my partner, andrea. the theme for this winter's seasons round exchange was 'light', and andrea really nailed it. even with my waldorf-y background, i never thought of santa lucia! isn't she adorable? she's standing amongst little nature bits and a crystal in front of a small paper mache bowl (with golden flecks) - all made and sent by andrea from maine. i especially love the birch bark.

plus, an adorable tree that has been a fun plaything for the little guy, and earned compliments from guests. it's weighted on the bottom with beans, i think, to keep it upright. one of the stipulations of the seasons round exchange is using all natural materials for all of your items. bravo!

andrea also sent a gorgeous card, a beeswax star candle, and a copy of the latest issue of her zine, GEMINI (not pictured). you can see her post on the exchange for more pictures or to get more details on it all!

so, here's what i sent, getting ready to go. i nestled everything in fresh greens from mt. hood ntl. forest, where we cut our tree this year ($5 permit from the ranger station - so fun, but so so cold!). i sent a crystal window hanging (blogged). the six-sided version was a lot harder than anticipated, so i had marc's help with engineering and nailing! i just strung a simple star of david with blue mohair, but i think many different lacings and weavings could be made! this project will continue to evolve in our household! i also sent a little mistletoe (a symbol of life & light in the dark winter months), and a handmade beeswax candle. had help on that too - made by my booth partners at the sunnyside environmental craft fair, song garden school.

my favorite offering was this little lantern-bearing gnome, knitted up in light bright icy colors and felted. i shared this pattern in my insanely long sock summit post; it's another design by marie mayhew. i needle-felted his eyes and nose, and used a little thread to tack down his beard (which covers his cute pointy shoes!).

i also sent a big bunch of wool roving - it's all over our seasonal display (and tree too), masquerading as snow. we had the tiniest sprinkling on christmas eve morning, but no white christmas here in portland. lucky for us, we always have an abundance of wool! more seasons round photos and nature table inspiration here and here!