Saturday, March 30, 2013

Just in the Nick of Time.....

 With only one day left to the month of March, I am happy to announce the snowflake garland was finally replaced with a far more entertaining and colorful string of buttons.
 Soon after a hint of Easter was added in the form of bitty basket bounties sent my way by the most kindred of spirits.
 And so all that remained to re-set my FUNctional space for the month was to make a book selection. Thanks to the delightful imagination of Beatrix Potter this was quite easy to do, for within the pages of The Tale of Two Bad Mice can be found a wonderful story of dollhouse adventure.
 It takes place in the most beautiful of  houses belonging to the dolls Lucinda and Jane. One day while the two dolls are out and about Potter conspires to have the house invaded by some very hungry and  rambunctious mice.
 Now if, like me, you happen to be a fan of Beatrix Potter and  this book happens to find it's way into your hands, lucky you!!! You are in for a real treat. Bar hoping on over the England, this is by far the best look see at Potter's home furnishings, and gardens you will get.
 More often than not the book demonstrates how closely she looked to the world around her as inspiration for her illustrations. While the red brick dollhouse displayed at Hill Top Farm may not be the exact model for Lucinda's and Jane's.....
.....much of the food and furnishings contained within it were!
 My favorite illustrations in the book, however, have always been the ones in which I catch a glimpse of Jane, the sweet wooden doll. For years I dreamt of having one similar and then one day I did!
A Wooden Polly doll...or so it said on her torso!
 Discovered  on the dark, dingy shelves of a New Hampshire thrift shop it was love at first sight. Goodness, how could anyone have resisted those three little curls.
A bit more information is "tattooed" on her back in case anyone out there is interested in searching out a  Polly Shorrock doll of their own.
She comes highly recommended for such sweetness is more than likely to put a smile on your face!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

The Last Straw

 It snowed again yesterday.
 And although my little lucky penny doll was delighted for the opportunity to try out the new cape I made for her.....
 .....I am very tired of this view.
 Come to think of it...I'm tired of this one as well.
The good news is, today is the official start of spring!
Time for some fun,
a few changes,
and lots of color.
I find trays are the handiest when a transition is in order.
Moving to another room? Grab a tray.
TV dinner time? Grab a tray.
Welcome in a new season? Grab a tray.
 Considering I don't want to look at the snow out my window why would I want to look at it on my wall? Splashing in a spring rain puddle, however, now that looks like fun!
 Button, button, who's got the button?
I do!!!
Lots of them too.
And after an afternoon spent happily stringing them along I must admit.....
.....things are beginning to look up!

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Out With Something Else That's Old

This morning we awoke to find our anticipated receipt of several inches of snow had blossomed into more than a foot! While the initial excitement of a "no school day" call followed by a cozy spell of window gazing with a hot cuppa were a delightful start to our Friday, the ensuing hours of shoveling left much to be desired. As I sit here now with achy arms and frost nipped toes I am thinking it is high time for a change in season.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Out With the Old....

Fourteen years ago, when Teen #2 was my sweet little Doll Baby, I decided it would be fun to make her some dress up clothes.  I learned how smock,

I made several very tedious buttonholes,

and I sewed up more than a few lengths of french seams. When all was said and done my Doll Baby had a new dress that was almost as sweet as she was. And me, well I had a new passion!

I became obsessed with smocking.
I joined a SAGA group, I subscribed to magazines, and I acquired this amazing machine, the Amanda-Jane Smocking Pleater. With it I was able to pleat up oodles of fabrics to embellish with trellis stitches, bouillons, and french knots.

For several years I had my fun....Christmas dresses, birthday frocks, playtime rompers....every occasion became an excuse for another creation.
And then my Doll Baby turned four and a half.
 Easter Sunday, 2001 did not go well. Doll Baby had wanted a shocking pink velour number with silver sequins but instead got a homemade gingham pinafore. I in turn received a truly terrifying preview of adolescent rebellion. I'll skip the gory details but  needless to say that was the last smocked anything I made for her. I have not budged but then again neither has she. Now, as a Sweet Sixteener her fashion tastes remain within the realms of velour and sequins...a combination that just so happens to be par for the course at her favorite shopping haunts Pink and Juicy Couture.

 Baring the occasional baby gift here and there, my pleater has for years been empty of fabric. Not much fun for the pleater or for me. So in the spirit of embracing all things "FUN" this year I've decided to do something about it. Amanda-Jane is headed to the Etsy shop and hopefully some new adventures in sewing.
And what about me?
It just may be that I've got some new doll baby adventures right around the corner.