Tuesday, May 31, 2005


I don't know who is more excited when the Martha Stewart Kids Magazine arrives, me or Mia, but we always have to do a project right away. This weekend we made papier-mache (or as Mia calls it, "paper-crochet") vehicles.

Mia and I collaborated on these hot-air balloons.

going for a ride...

and Miles made this spaceship

Mia added the pirate flag.

Now if only Mia's birthday wasn't in December, so we could throw that beautiful Midsummer's Night Dream pixie party.

self-portrait tuesday

In an apron (of course) and headless (of course). Self-timer with camera sitting on the potty.

Our upstairs bathroom is my favorite room in the house. I like to lie in the tub and dream of it redone in white wainscotting, free of the vinyl floor. You've heard the expression "the cobbler's family has no shoes"? Well, the architect's family has no remodel. We do, however, have a lot of shoes.

Monday, May 30, 2005

mama's got a brand new bag

I had finally "lived" long enough with the great fabric I received from Hillary and decided I was ready to make a bag.

Lined in pink:

and embellished with vintage buttons from my collection and one I received from Amy:

This was my first bag of my own design that wasn't a straight-up tote bag and I'm pretty pleased with how it came out. Best of all, I have some of that great fabric left over!

Friday, May 27, 2005

photo friday: symbol

Miles' favorite vintage Izod red gingham shirt. photo friday.

thank you hillary!

Ever generous, Hillary found this smock while thrifting and sent it to Mia! She was thrilled with the smock and the little penguin spirograph-drawing-thingy that arrived with it and set to work right away.

The smock looks especially great with our mod vintage child's chair.

Thanks Hillary! I am loving the internet connection this week!

Thursday, May 26, 2005

small pleasures

Purple radishes.

Going out for coffee, scones, and the fluff sections of the Thursday NY Times alone with my husband.

Driving by my children's school and spotting them weeding the garden in their bare feet.

Seeing a giant white yoga ball blowing around the neighborhood, like an urban tumbleweed.

Planning a picnic for dinner.

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

lucky me

Well, real-life and blog-life intersected this morning when Amy of angry chicken and I finally met.

Some things I learned about Amy:
1. She has a beautiful smile, and now I will always think of it when I read her posts.
2. Her small quilts are a-friggin-mazing. Photos do not do them justice.
3. She is a warm and loving mother (and Sadie was awesome to so patiently entertain herself while we gabbed).
4. She has a charming, art-filled home. Beautiful, subtle color everywhere.
5. She is brimming with great ideas that I can't wait for her to pursue!

And it wasn't MY birthday, but I got a parting gift!

Thanks Amy! I had a wonderful time.

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

and more aprons

Another tip for the Stumptown readers: the best vintage aprons for under $3 (among other goodies) can be found at Red, White, & Blue Thrift in Gladstone. Today I found the child-size gem that Mia is wearing (mine came from there too).

more on the lamb

Many people were wondering about a pattern for the lamb. I adapted it from this book:

(one of my many thrifted craft books from the 60/70s)
It's a really simple pattern with thorough instructions.

I made some minor changes to the pattern and did not follow the instructions for the flower yoke, but created mine of individual flowers and leaves made from wool felt and wool beads.

Email me if you're interested in a copy of the pattern. I am going to try to adapt it further to make other animals, stay tuned.

pssssst: Happy birthday to Amy. We are finally going to meet tomorrow!

Sunday, May 22, 2005

paper art

Nikki McClure. I love my calendar. The chicken book is so charming.

Japanese paper cut-out book.

My mom sent me this link: the paper moon. Cut paper collages by Ida Pearle. Ms. Pearle designs and plays violin for the band Ida. Also from Ida, is Elizabeth Mitchell who makes great kid music.

edited to add: that's a drawing by Mia (age 5) and, yes, she is an artistic genius! (in my, totally non-objective, mind). The birds have bows on their heads.

Thursday, May 19, 2005

month of softies: may flowers

Mia had a little lamb.

Whose fleece (well, sherpa wool felt) was white as snow.

And everywhere that Mia went, that lamb was sure to go.

(and it's fleece is no longer white as snow)

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

for the puddletown folks

Contribute your story of your Portland experience here.

I am determined to cross the river to see motel gallery's new show.

A new fabric and craft thrift store. I checked it out over the weekend and found some goodies like a half yard of Kaffe Fassett for 65 cents and some vintage trims and embroidery transfers (all under a dollar).

I've been house-bound with feverish kids, so my May month-of-softies is nearly finished!

Monday, May 16, 2005

robot man

Jack and I are so excited it is yard sale season. Every weekend we find all the ones in our neighborhood, and walk to them with the kids, looking for treasure. This weekend Mia found a bag of old tinker toys, Miles found a space shuttle placemat, and I found a piece of Alexander Henry robot flannel from which I made this applique for my little robot man.

Sunday, May 15, 2005

something to see

Thank you Martha at Naive Knitting for the amazing Studio Confidante Slideshow.

For all you apron lovers, via my friend Kim at Rollerskates and an Apron, check out The Apron Chronicles.

My favorite new blog: port2port.

Saturday, May 14, 2005


A sweet chicken postcard from my mom.

My love affair with chickens and chicken imagery began when I was a student at UC Santa Cruz and I moved into a house that came with a flock. How I loved those hens! The rooster, I must admit, was a bit intimidating. I loved collecting the beautiful brown eggs. And the hatchlings? I never tired of holding those fuzzy chicks and watching them grow into gawky pullets.

When I am trying to sleep (doesn't come easy for me), and I want to take myself to a safe and comfortable place, there are two sensory memories which I summon. The first is the sound of the water lapping along the canal in Venice, Italy heard from the twin bed of our pensione when Jack and I were honeymooning. The second is the tweet-tweeting of my baby chicks waking me every morning at sunrise (I brought the chicks to my bedroom every night to keep them safe from foxes, cats, feral dogs and all the other predators of the Santa Cruz mountains).

I am lucky to live in an urban area that is very chicken-friendly. Maybe some will join us soon?

Thursday, May 12, 2005

self portrait with gigantic hand, camera, and felt bead necklace

because people are talking about self portraits and because I never showed you the felt beads we made.

Tuesday, May 10, 2005


My sister and I are collaborating on a site (more on that later), and we've been brainstorming a bit about what will be included, as well as the look and spririt. It made me think of Jonathan Adler's brilliant manifesto. I have long been a fan of Jon Adler's pottery and textiles. I love his mix of the graphically beautiful

and the campy kitsch.

His manifesto is great. Some gems:
We believe handcrafted tchotchkes are life-enhancing.
We believe in dorky enthusiasm.
We believe colors can't clash.

What would go on your manifesto?

Monday, May 09, 2005

studio confidante

Hey, send in a photo of your studio confidante.

(I'm giving everyone a kick in the pants, Martha)

Sunday, May 08, 2005

happy mother's day

to my mom and all the other crafty moms out there. Have a great day!

Saturday, May 07, 2005

tiered skirt

This tiered skirt has been languishing in the unfinished pile for months, but I tackled it, gathers and all, last night.

It passes the twirl test.

Friday, May 06, 2005

a wee swap

My new camera is finally here! That makes two great packages I've received in as many days. When Hillary offered up some fabric for swap, I jumped, and my yard arrived in this wonderful color-coordinated package yesterday.

Love the Lotta Jansdotter postcard. It went right on my bulletin board.
And the fabric? It is even better in person. Beautiful colors and motifs. I'm not sure which is my favorite:
I'm always a sucker for chickens...

then there's the fruit...

who can resist this sly cat?

What to do with it? One big project? Many little appliques? I think I'll just admire it for a while.

Thank you Hillary! You were so generous to share your fab vintage find.

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

still waiting for my camera...

but I do have a scanner!

Last Christmas, in an effort to make the holidays more about relationships and togetherness and less about "stuff", I asked family and friends to give my kids handmade gifts instead of store-bought toys. They received some amazing things. My mom made Mia a quilt, my dad made Miles a hand-painted train table, my in-laws made a deck of cards with pictures of family members, and my sister made Mia this wonderful book. It is all about me! Mia loves to look through the pictures of me as a baby, child, and young adult and read Lisa's memories of those times.
Lisa's on the left and I'm on the right.

Isn't my sister great?

Sunday, May 01, 2005

sunbonnet sue help

That title is there just to freak out my mom who has serious issues with Sunbonnet Sue quilts.

We're reading Little House on the Prairie at our house (with some effort by me to put everything into a cultural context), and Mia wanted to see a covered wagon so we went out to the End of the Oregon Trail Interpretive Center yesterday. She was absolutely thrilled and loved every minute, corny multi-media presentation and all, but what she keeps talking about are the sunbonnets she tried on in the gift shop.

Does anyone know of a free child's sunbonnet pattern? I've googled to no avail. Thanks!