Friday, May 31, 2013

Chevron, Floral and Giraffe Pillows…Oh my!


Mom’s been staying at my house for a week…tomorrow I take her back home. It has been great and I always love it when she comes to my house.  She had a few small projects for me to do while she was here. 


It’s funny though, she didn’t even know this was one of those projects.  She has recently painted and had some work done in her home and she was telling me about it.  She talked about how she wanted to add some color to her living room.  So, we took a stroll through the Hobby Lobby fabric section…I suggested pillows to brighten up the room as they are inexpensive and easy to change around if you decide you don’t like the color combo. 


Her couch is dark brown leather and she has pale green walls.  So this is what I came up with!  We have two red chevron pillows in different shapes/sizes, one giraffe print and a bright large floral print.


I love the prints together and think they will look as great on her couch as they do on mine.  Hmmm, maybe, just maybe I should keep them!   I have my own super simple way to make pillows (no zippers, easy insertion and removal of the pillows, just two seams) and four of these took 1 hour to make.   I’m working on a tutorial for my technique to share too.


I might be linking to some/all of these great parties! 


Thursday, May 30, 2013

The Steamboat Arabia Museum

Mom and I spent some great time at the Steamboat Arabia Museum in Kansas City yesterday.  I have been there before, but it had been a while, probably 8 years and I wanted to see it again.  It’s a work in progress, so things had changed a bit.  I took tons of pictures so this will be a picture rich post!


These buttons were originally on cotton dresses, but the cotton deteriorated over time.  When the crates were open, there were strands of color in the mud from the dress fabric and these buttons.


Mom is visiting for a week and we decided to take a day trip…


On September 5, 1856, the Arabia set out for a routine trip. At Quindaro Bend, near the town of Parkville, Missouri, the boat hit a submerged walnut tree snag. The snag ripped open the hull, which rapidly filled with water. The upper decks of the boat stayed above water, and the only casualty was a mule that was tied to sawmill equipment and forgotten. The boat sank so rapidly into the mud that by the next morning, only the smokestacks and pilot house remained visible. Within a few days, these traces of the boat were also swept away. Numerous salvage attempts failed, and eventually the boat was completely covered by water. Over time, the river shifted a half a mile to the east. The site of the sinking is in present-day Kansas City, Kansas and excavated remnants have been removed to a museum in Kansas City, Missouri.


The steam boat left St. Louis for Kansas City, Weston, St. Joseph, Council Bluffs and Sioux City on August 30, 1856.


It carried boxes, barrels and crates full of supplies needed by the folks building their lives on the frontier.  Many towns depended on regular deliveries by steamboats up the river for supplies and sundries.  In fact, many of the little towns waiting for supplies folded up before winter started as they had no supplies for building, keeping warm, eating.


Clothespins, looking glasses, chalkboards, candles,


kegs for food storage, tools to build with and cut down trees for homes…


Wagon wheels, axles,


saws of all varieties,


rakes and scales,


Pick axe heads and lots of handles…


When the wood was removed from the boat which had been covered by silt for 132 years it had to be soaked with an agent to plasticize it so it didn’t collapse, as all the cellulose in the wood had deteriorated over the years and if the artifacts were allowed to dry out the wood just collapsed into a flat piece of wood. Flat enough to go into an envelope.


There were wood working tools, drill bits, hand drill, wood planes,


and fireplace tools


Buttons, lots of buttons and sewing supplies…


Anything wool survived, cotton did not…even the cotton thread in the shoes had disintegrated and the shoes were sewn back together with new thread as they were restored.


Stockings, shoes, shoe buttons, wool tunics and coats were abundant.  Remember this boat was supplying for the long winter ahead.


And keys, skeleton keys


of all materials and shapes and sizes, some fancy some plain...I wanted to take those home with me!


And tons of building supplies, doorknobs, handles, drawer pulls, locks,


hinges, plates and screws were found by the buckets full.  Remember when these were found in 1988, they are covered in layers of silt, looking like they have been dropped in buckets full of cement. Every little nail, every little hair pin has to be “excavated” to allow it to be restored and preserved.


There were hat pins…beaded pins


more buttons and tiny glass beads,


chains and buckets and barrels,


and beads used for trading with Native Americans.


The anchor and the boilers were raised and brought to the museum. 


Mom and I had a wonderful lunch at Windsor’s BBQ after the museum. 


If you are interested in more about the Arabia, go to the museum website or buy the book Treasure in a Cornfield which tells all about the dig and what they found.


Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Braided Leather Bracelet


Isn’t this bracelet pretty??


I found this great site online for all sorts of braided leather laces.  They have every single color I could imagine!  I used blue and turquoise to make this beautiful bracelet. 


I used 4mm cords for this bracelet and bought all my supplies from the same site.  The findings are sterling silver and the leather cord quality is superb!

PicMonkey Collage

I love the murano beads that slip onto the leather cording.  I love all shades of blues and turquoise so this was an easy decision. The beads are just beautiful!


Everything arrived ready to use in labeled bags, the end caps were easy to apply to the leather pieces and it just was so easy to make. I found this store online by a search for leather cording and finishing supplies and shipping was prompt.


I finished this bracelet today, tomorrow I am going to make another bracelet.  That one will be made from thinner 2.5 mm braided leather cords and the colors are grey and turquoise.



I can’t wait to wear it to work this week! 


I might be linking to these great parties!


Friday, May 24, 2013

Random things…


Last September the big hail storm we had destroyed my homemade umbrella, there were multiple holes and tears in it so I drug it up to the sewing room and mended it.  Probably a dozen holes in it and a big three corner tear.  I zig zagged it back together and added two rows of gross grain ribbon to help hold it together another year.


I made it from a drop cloth last summer, you can go here to see that post!  I washed it and bleached it after I patched it and it washed very well and is brighter.


Several years ago I taught a quilting class at church.  Fred was the only guy at both the classes and he took it all very seriously!  Most of the participants finished theirs slowly, and just a few weeks ago Fred brought his to me to send to my Aunt Marge to be quilted.


  Marge even commented on what a nice job he had done! Fred made a queen size quilt and a wall hanging from the leftovers!  It needs binding now and he will be done with it!


I bought this hernia-inducing concrete birdbath at an auction a few weeks ago.  $10!  I have always wanted one, but wanted one that wouldn’t tip over or be as likely to break.  This one fits the bill perfectly!


I’m steadily taking off the mosaic pieces and am planning to do something with flat marbles in shades of blues and greens.  Probably will keep the base white, but thinking about a turquoise color for the bowl part.  Any ideas on how that would look??


This container on my deck had all perennials planted last year and they survived and it is a beautiful collection of dianthus, and mums and some ornamental grass and creeping jenny.  Love that it didn’t cost anything!


I can identify, what can I say?  (found this on instagram)


Love this too!  (also found on instagram, not sure how to credit it there)


I was in Boonville with my boyfriend this past weekend  (yes, it is so exciting to say I have a boyfriend… for the past 3 months we have been hanging out and it has been a blast!) and we were wandering the downtown area and found this great little shop. 


Tons of neat planters, and all things recycled, upcycled but in a great way!


Ladders hanging from the ceiling holding all sorts of things, planters made from old metal washpans and dishes, ladders with old enamel dishes attached to each step to plant with flowers.  I asked the lady if I could take some pictures and she said yes, but then I saw a sign saying, no pictures! I put the phone away and stopped but this place is jammed with great things and reasonably priced too!  Stop by if you are ever there in Boonville, she makes all the furniture herself from upcycled wood. 


I might be linking up to some of these great parties!