Thursday, August 26, 2010

how time flies...

i cannot believe that it has been exactly one month since my last post! wow, either i'm a real slacker of have been really busy...we'll go with really busy :)
actually, things have been a little crazy here in the Des and here's what has been going on:
1. we went on a super relaxing trip north to the cabin and spent time with wonderful family [more pics will be coming soon!]

2. the Sunday night we got back from Minnesota, we got 4-6" of rain in a couple of hours and our basement flooded for the second time in three years...ugh!
3. the next night, our basement flooded again... double ugh!
4. i drove back to the cabin the following weekend to pick up youngest son, who stayed on and missed all the drama at home [man, was i jealous!]
5. work has been crazy busy
6. school started today... yeah!!! both of my boys are now in high school and all i can say, again, is how time flies!

Monday, July 26, 2010

new etsy widget!

it's called Pocket Shop and you can see mine on the right sidebar of this page [under Please visit]. the widget provides access to a lot of of your etsy shop information, is super easy to set up and install, and there are seven different layouts available.

and this great tool is provided by the always helpful craft cult folks. if you have an etsy shop, you should check it out!

Thursday, July 22, 2010


Originally uploaded by mummysam
isn't this wonderful? it reminds me so much of when my boys were younger and always outside playing baseball...

this piece was created by mummysam, whose work i just stumbled upon. i love her sewn and fabric art as well as her new fabric line @ Robert Kaufman. there really is so much more, so i would suggest taking a peek if you're not already familiar with her work!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

for the brids...

... no, that's not a mis-spelling above. an absolutely hilarious etsy treasury curated by chuckhodi was brought to my attention by regretsy on facebook today. check it out here!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

have you seen this?!

Mara Skujeniece is a ceramic genius!

She used these spools for inspiration
to make these molds
 to create these beautiful vases
and i cannot tell you how badly i want this!
[all photos via skujeniece]

you can find the entire 'spools' collection and many other wonderful creations [the hyperbowls are fantastic too!] at skujeniece... [website found via Aesthetic Outburst]

Monday, July 5, 2010

flickr favorites...

i have, do and always will LOVE argyle [i still have a pair of argyle socks from college, which was only twen- ...ummm not so long ago]. those simple geometrics just never seem to go out of style...

you too can play flickr favorites over at ArtMind...i forgot there would be a theme since it's the first week of the month, but oh well...

Sunday, July 4, 2010

happy 4th of july!

[photo found here]

i just watched this movie for the bazillionth time and i love it! i always feel so proud to be an American after watching it- plus it's just a great movie with wonderful songs and dancing! hope you're having a wonderful weekend, no matter where you are...

Thursday, June 24, 2010

it all starts with the magic ring...

i've been busy with the 'F' hook and cotton

[top pic is side one, bottom is side two]

1. i made the cozy for a recycled glass jar... perfect for pencils, paintbrushes, etc
2. the granny square potholder i decided to do off-center
3. the round potholder is your standard increasing circle
4. the circle to square pattern i found on Lion Brand Yarn
5. the scalloped potholder is a design by Priscilla Hewitt

have you been hooking lately? ;)

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

etsy treasury...

... titled Sweet Soft Sage Green, curated by SweetAnneVintage

mail call...

...wonderful fabric has been arriving at my doorstep
1.  The top set is a super cute set of screen printed fabric panels from June Craft. Kayanna is super-talented and has wonderful things in her shop and a really cool blog [oh, and she lives in Iowa]! I've been saving up for these beauties and am so glad they are in my possession since she is only doing a limited run.
2. When I saw this flying squirrel fabric, my first reaction was to giggle. It is sooo cute and is the creation of my recent Feeling Stitchy button swap partner, Rose of Crafty McGee. She also sent me a pretty sewn and embroidered badge, which I also love!
3. I have a couple of vintage wood chairs that I need to recover and I ordered this beautiful upholstery weight cotton from Swanky Swell in a dark- almost red- orange called 'mandarin'. Unfortunately, the pieces weren't quite big enough for chair cushion covers but, no worries, the fabric will get used!
4. This is a stack of fabric I purchased from SewMamaSew during one of their 15% off sales recently... it's a mix of prints and yardage. No definite plans for any of it yet, but I'm sure it won't take long to figure out :D 
Have you been stash building or busting?

Oh, and one last item that came in the mail a while back...
 ...this fantastic 'Hyperactivityopgraphy From A to Z' book made the blog rounds about a month ago [I found it via How About Orange- like everything else, it seems] and I decided to order two. The book was sold out the next day! Wasn't I lucky?! But why did I get two, you might ask... you'll find out soon [heehee]!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

flickr favorites...

... inspired by the Flickr group 'This is Iowa' administered by Chrissy (from Domestica), I decided to pick a few of my favorite b&w pics out of the group. These pictures give only a small glimpse into what defines my fabulous home state of Iowa...

Stop over to ArtMind and play along with Flickr Favorites...

Monday, June 21, 2010

vintage finds...

...from a garage sale I stopped at last week (I had sworn off garage/estate sales and auctions for a while, but I just couldn't resist!).
The spice rack [$0.25] has two drawers at the bottom, the Tupperware [$2.00] has never been used and the Corning shakers [$0.25] are super cute!
I'm definitely pleased with my 1970s finds! What goodies have you 'found' lately?

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

2010 summer trade guide... oh, hello friend is a great list of Etsy shops that participate in trading. The guide is beautifully laid out and has been broken down into sections like jewelry, stationery, artwork, photography, and vintage (thanks for including my store, Danni!). If you have an Etsy shop and love to trade, you really need to check out the 2010 Summer Trade Guide! And if you've never been to oh, hello friend stop in and say 'hi!'... I promise you won't be sorry!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

putting my name on paper...

... I mentioned a couple of weeks ago I was participating in the May Market Day [more on that later in a separate post, but it was better than expected!]. You know, I don't think I ever truly appreciated how much work goes into getting show-ready! Whew!

My first order of business was to create business cards and a table banner:

It took a while for me to figure out what I wanted my 'brand' to look like. But here's how I created the final results... 

First, I downloaded the vintage looking Matchbook font [found via How About Orange], formatted my business cards and large banner letters in MS Word and then printed them on paper... Avery linen textured for the business cards [I love the feel of these cards!] and card stock for the banner letters. 

The backs of the cards and backgrounds for the banner are printed with colors and patterns I created at [alos found via How About Orange]. The common color on all of the tartans is gray and then the accent colors are based on colors of washi tape I had previously purchased from Tinted Mint

The tape was used to hold the letters on the backgrounds for the banner and to put a stripe on the left side of the cards. [Oh and I also used the tape to attach price tags to my items- I love this tape for being low-tack but sticking when it really needs to!] For the banner I then crocheted a white rope and attached the letters with small silver clips. 

So, what do you think? Do they work for both vintage and handmade? Do they look like something a third grader would make in art class? Any feedback would be much appreciated!

Monday, June 7, 2010

crochet love...

Originally uploaded by sarah london textiles
...for this beautiful lamp shade made by the the fabulous Sarah London! do i have any spare drum lamp shades in my house?

Saturday, June 5, 2010

vintage swap: summer 2010

Yesterday the sign-ups for the Summer Vintage Swap began!
If you're interested in joining in, please stop by Vintage Swap blog and get your name in quick... there is a max of 100 people and it filled up really fast for the winter edition.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

this saturday...

... I will be participating in my first show as a full-blown vendor! The venue is called Market Day and the show is held on the last Saturday of each month from May-October and then on Black Friday in November. There will be a mix of vintage, art and handmade, all with an Indie flair. And it's located about one block from the DM Farmers Market...

I'm really excited but soooo nervous. Granted I've helped my mom at the local antique show in Valley Junction [which we are doing on June 13th- more on that another time], but I have never have signed up for, organized for and set up for a show all on my own. I was asked to participate based on my vintage shop on Etsy but thought I could also have for sale some of my craft items I've been making. Well, getting the vintage stuff picked out, cleaned up and priced (thanks, Mom, for your help!) took a little longer than I anticipated ... plus I had to design business cards, come up with signage, etc, which means the handmade will be light this month. 

My biggest fear is that I haven't selected the right type of items and it took me forever to decide what to take but I just decided to go with my gut feeling. Hopefully it will pay off! If not, I can adjust for June, right?

I can't wait to meet all of the other local artisans, crafters and vintage sellers! If any of you are in Des Moines this weekend, please stop by... I would love to see you!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

flickr favorites...

... daisies are my second favorite flower [after tulips] and I think it's their simplicity that draws me to them. The white petals make the yellow centers just pop!

Monday, May 24, 2010


... I've been included in this fabulous treasury, which made the Front Page at 12:00am Sunday [hey 11:00pm cst is better than 0:00 in any time zone!]
 My vintage individual metal trays with the seashells are my contribution. I just love the blue tones... thanks BenefitJewels for including me!

And equally exciting, one of my items was in the Etsy Finds Decor yesterday! 

The Storque article featured the home of Hilda Grahnat, who some of you may know from her blog Forever is Today. I just recently found her blog and it really is fantastic. I highly suggest you check it out if you haven't already!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

vintage find...

My friend Stacy and I went to an auction about a month ago and I scored this sweet little dresser for $15! [Of course, this wasn't the only thing I bought at that auction much to my husband's chagrin :D]

It originally had metal casters with wood wheels but two of the wheels were gone so Mr Dill cut off the casters. I gave it a good scrub down and put felt underneath the legs and it is now located in my entryway. It's added the pop of color I needed there... the walls are a dark red and at first I thought 'No way does the aqua match the dark red' until I remembered the lovely painting I purchased from Mariette @ Petit Bijou Art Shop. The painting really tied the whole room together!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

flickr favorites...

... I don't know if I've mentioned this before, but my husband and I are HUGE classic movie fans. Our television is pretty much tuned to TCM unless there's a movie we just can't stand to watch again (hey, they can't all be Giant!).  So on the subject of classic movies and classic stories, James Dean is the focus of my flickr favorites this week for many reasons. First my favorite book of all time is 'East of Eden' by Steinbeck and I love the movie just about as much (how often can you say that the movie is even half as good as the book)- Dean was magnificent! And then 'Giant' and 'Rebel Without a Cause' are equally wonderful! If there had only been more films made with James Dean...

Head on over to ArtMind to add your Flickr Favorites...

Editorial: Wouldn't it be great if you could purchase just one or two stations? We have one kazillion channels and pretty much watch TCM all the time- oh, except on Thursdays when CSI and the Mentalist are on (Simon Baker can read my mind anytime! hehe).

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

my creative space...

... lots of crocheting goin' on. I've been trying out new color combos and product ideas...

Share your creative space at kootoyo....

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

flickr favorites...

... this week is all about the letter 'M'

'M' as in motherhood, merriment, motion, magnificence, the name Michelle and, of course, mosaics!

Stop over at Artmind and play Flickr Favorites too...

Saturday, May 8, 2010

etsy treasury...

... Amy of PonderandStitch included my Pyrex bowl in her wonderful treasury
And here's a funny story... I saw this treasury on Etsy's front page and immediately noticed the headband on the top and knew it belonged to Jody of thelittleprints. So I sent Jody a 'Congratulations, you're on the FP' convo without looking at the entire treasury. It was then that I received a convo from Amy letting me know that one of my items was on the FP! So, I went right back and there was my bowl. Guess that will teach me to look at all of the items on the FP! 

So go on over and check out the great collection Amy has put together!

Oh and if you're not already familiar with Amy's blog or Jody's blog, you really should check them out. They are two of my favorites AND they are both in the midwest :D

Thursday, May 6, 2010

des moines artists featured...

... have you seen the Featured Seller on Etsy the last couple of days, huh, huh? Urban Posture is based out of Des Moines and it makes me proud to see them and their work introduced to a world-wide audience. I knew it wouldn't take long... I found them through Shop Local on Etsy last year and have also seen their fabulous items in local indie craft fairs. 

My personal favorites are their binders and folders... hmmm, now that I that I say that, I think I'm in need of some office organization. I hope they are at Market Day this month so I can stock up!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

flickr favorites...

...are all about how art is created by logic/math/science [and, yes, i was a math geek in high school, but let's keep that between you and me!]

Saturday, May 1, 2010

pincushion swap received...

...from Leah @ handmadebitsandpieces in Australia [for the Foxs Lane Pincushion Swap]

Isn't it beautiful?! I love the felt and fabric mix and the ric rac trim....

I LOVE it- thanks so much Leah!!


Monday, April 26, 2010

did you see...

... this fabulous piece of vintage sunshine?
 photo by linaloo

Lina @ Linaloo made it using entirely thrifted vintage bed linens- the front, back, batting, everything! You can find the details of the Not Mellow Yellow here....

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

pincushion swap sent...

 ...which included this pincushion and needle book.
I really like how they turned out and am very proud of myself for several reasons...
First, with inspiration from sew ritzy-titzy's daisy chatelaine tutorial, I created my own crochet pattern for the pincushion. I'm a chronic pattern-follower but decided it was time to break out! My thread colors were dictated by my second proud moment...

 I actually got up the courage to cut into one of my vintage feedsacks! (You can do it too, Courtney :D ) I used the feedsack as the inside cover of the pincushion, for the pocket on the back cover of the needle book and the closure on the book. The closure leads me to my other proud moment...
I finally found the nerve to use that intimidating piece of metal, the Crop-a-dile, to set the snap for the closure on the needle book! It really is a wonderful piece of machinery but I'm sure it will take me five years to figure out all of its multi-tool potential.

I really had fun making these and I hope the recipient -who lives in a far-away land- likes them. even just a little bit...

And of course, Kate @ Foxs Lane deserves a very big 'THANK YOU' for putting this swap together! I'm so grateful I had a chance to participate!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

mail call...

I just received these beautiful merino wool yarns from Shivaya Naturals. Shivaya Naturals is a shop owned by Heather, who organized the fabulous vintage swap I participated in a couple of months back, and all of her profits are donated to charity. She also has a wonderful blog full of recipes, creativity and community.

The colors are Black Cherry and Sunshine... aren't these hand-dyed yarns gorgeous? They feel wonderful too! Now I need to find just the right projects to use them... they seem more suited to something knitted, which means I will need to re-teach myself the use of the two pointed needles. Suggestions for projects, anyone?

Friday, April 16, 2010

i hope...

...your weekend is full of color and sunshine!

  photos by Michelle Dillman

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

flickr favorites...


If I ate healthier and got more sleep
I would have more energy,
Making my non-craft time more productive, which would then give me more time
To create beautiful things

Come over to ArtMind and play Flickr Favorites too!

what i've been up to...

The weather is wonderful! 

The boys and I have started golf lessons... Golf = Summer around here!

On Friday evening, Mr Dill and I spent what seemed like hours unwrapping all the loveliness sent by Cathe @ JSIM. I still can't believe I won her giveaway! I was mentally creating projects for the items as they were coming out of the box! I spent the rest of the evening organizing it all, using mostly the containers included in the package. Thanks again, Cathe!!

I spent a lot of time Sunday cleaning off my three season porch. Actually it's really more of a two season porch- in Spring and Fall it is totally usable but not so much in summer or winter since there is no heat or air conditioning out there. If we leave the doors from the main part of the house open, we can cool or heat the area but only to certain low or high temps. Last summer, I set up the porch as my Etsy space, where I keep the vintage stuff I've listed and the kazillion things I have not listed yet [and wouldn't you know it that garage sale/flea market/auction season is here and so my pile to list is growing already!] I'm really hoping to get the porch set up so it's easier to take pics [windows on all three sides make for wonderful natural light out there] and list items as well as have some crafting space for work and/or storage. We'll see how it goes and how quickly the weather gets really hot!

And here is a bracelet I finished up last week...
It is six joined granny squares with a loop and vintage mustard yellow button. I really love how it turned out and was the brain child of the random crocheted shapes I mentioned in a previous post.

So what have you all been up to?