Sunday, May 29, 2011
Tuesday, May 3, 2011
Sunday, May 1, 2011
Very exciting news - my work has been published...in Sis Boom's new book: Girl's World.
Run out to your favorite book store and get a copy or buy through Sis Boom's website.
Here is a quick peak
The book is chock full of great sewing projects for girls with patterns included and the most beautiful photographs.
Each year MRR DESIGN grows a little more; publication of my work is another notch on the pole. It makes me so happy and proud and is testament to slow and steady wins the race. My race anyway. As I pass the three year mark of the blog, I note that the blog is the tool that ratcheted up the business. The blog allows me to showcase my work, and to communicate with other folks about what inspires me. It motivates me to plow ahead...to stay focused and informed. And to have fun.
Over the years I have done a lot of work with Jennifer Paganelli of Sis Boom fame. This is Jennifer's first book and I am delighted to be part of it. It is full of how-to projects for all you crafty folks and seamstresses or just plain creative folks. You can see some of the other projects that I did for Jennifer here and here. And while my business is bumping along, Jennifer's is on the speed way. When I first met Jennifer she had two or three sales a year at her house; she got some great press in Country Living and then she got the dream of a lifetime: to design fabric. I think Jennifer has about 8 different fabric collections so far - check out her website. You will recognize many of Jennifer's fabrics on my frames.
My piece is on how-to make a quilted memento board - go to pages 158 - 163 -
and then read the rest of the book.
Saturday, April 30, 2011
Spring is my favorite season in NYC. I especially love the trees all over the city with the white blossoms. I am not sure what kind of trees they are, but they are everywhere. This is the East Side; photo taken from the Kips Bay Showhouse. My last apartment in NYC had a wonderful view of flowering trees like this.
And you cannot forget the magnificent tulips on Park Avenue every spring.
Friday, April 29, 2011
This cracked me up!
Or as the newspaper article claimed: "it will have you in stitches"
Photograph credit, KG, fellow Wilton Knitwit, part-time London resident.
My fellow knit wit friend KG, has the knack of tracking down the most interesting knitting, crafting, needlework books and events and such. Just a few weeks ago KG attended the Stitch and Craft show in London where she came across the lovely author Fiona Goble who wrote a Knit Your Own Royal Wedding. The author and her talk were both delightful with amazing knitted royals in attendance as well. The Today Show was shooting a segment with the author and asked Kris if she would be interviewed too - because they heard she was an American - I have not found the interview yet but I am on the hunt and will air right here when and if I find it.
Click on the Daily Mail to see all the pics of the Knitted Royal Wedding - a hoot -
I did not quite get what Kris was talking about until I saw the pictures.
Enjoy your day at the wedding via the tube. I did not watch Diana's but I will be up early today in Virginia, where I am working at a boutique, Daisy Days in Richmond. Thank goodness the time zones are in my favor so that I can catch a good portion of the wedding before the boutique opens.
Rococo Chocolates designed a special chocolate box in honour of
The painting inspired by an imagined proposal by Prince William to Miss Kate.
By the way, Rococo has the most amazing chocolates,
located on the King's Road in London.
It was a haunt of mine when I lived there;
I limited my purchase to three truffles at a time
and savored every morsel.
Pastel Royal Wedding Map via JCB
Thursday, April 28, 2011
The desktops are looking pretty good:
street plan of Paris
the naturalist's Butterflies (butterflies are so IN this season)
happy Sis Boom
to match the Sis Boom memento board I posted earlier this week
If you are near Richmond, Virginia
come on by and check out my wares in person.
Daisy Days at St. Catherine's School
Wednesday, April 27, 2011
Watercolor Swirl in aqua and pink
front: Sea Glass
back left: Central Park Walk
back right: Clover in aqua
front - olive
back left - white with brown
back right - brown with white
butterflies and bees
What difference a ribbon makes.
I prefer the black with white topstitching - how about you?
For the cabin
the friend who owns the cabin that you are visiting
Tuesday, April 26, 2011
Graduation Season is upon us.
How about a custom frame to remember the big event!
Spoonflower fabric created
by a Wilton friend of mine
specifically for the Wilton high school market.
I think these frames will FLY off the shelf.
seersucker with monograms.
If you are interested, scroll down the left side to see monogram options,
then e-mail me.
Two week turn around time.
Monday, April 25, 2011
Thursday, April 21, 2011
Is that not the cutest picture of a baby checking out the action?
The March 24, 2011 Boston Globe Sunday magazize featured a terrific article on the resurgence of knitting, sewing and handcrafts. The photos of the shops were bright and vibrant. I misplaced my copy of the article and had to make due with this photo, which is not nearly as bright and colorful as the original, but the sweet baby makes up for the lack of intense color. The article reported on the growing trend of do-it-yourself handicraft boutiques and interest in all things hand-made and the shift of today's generation away from the 70's anti-hand-craft woman's work to the pride of home/hand made.
People are beginning to realize the importance of creating for yourself as our world becomes increasingly high-tech, digital and faster and faster and faster. The slow movement is a terrific counterpart to the fast-paced 24-7 world we live in today. I love the slow, methodical work of knitting and stitching; it is relaxing and satisfying. Hurrah for hand work. A fitting sentiment for earth day - getting back to basics - do it yourself kind of activities - slowing down - enjoying today as it is - keeping our world alive.
If you are in the Boston area, check out the knitting shops below.
J. P. Knit & Stitch - Jamaica Plain
Gather Here - Cambridge "stitch lounge"
Stitch House - Dorchester
Hipstitch - Newtonville
Craftland School of Craft - Providence
Here is part of an interesting interview with Lisa Borgnes Giramonti of A Bloomsbury Life - this excerpt dovetails with my comments on the hand-craft arts or "home-arts". I did a post on Lisa last year and featured her wonderful needlepoint tapestries that are very funny and creative - click here.
Wednesday, April 20, 2011
Another example of how a designer uses an inspiration board; this photo is from the website of Redmond Aldrich Design and is a shot of her "design-kit". The kit is fitted out for an individual according to their design requirements; it allows an individual to use the firm's services without having the designer present - e-mail and telephone and this packet. Voila.
Inspiration boards and their uses grow...
Friday, April 15, 2011
Working, working, working after my winter hibernation, trying to get ready for my next boutique in Richmond, Virginia. My terrific monogrammer just embroidered 40 ribbons to get me ready for the spring graduation season. More photos after I finish a weekend of work in the studio. Can't wait to show you the 2011 spring line.
I wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o'er vales and hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,
A host, of golden daffodils;
Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.
Continuous as the stars that shine
And twinkle on the milky way,
They stretched in never-ending line
Along the margin of a bay:
Ten thousand saw I at a glance,
Tossing their heads in sprightly dance.
The waves beside them danced; but they
Out-did the sparkling waves in glee:
A poet could not but be gay,
In such a jocund company:
I gazed--and gazed--but little thought
What wealth the show to me had brought:
For oft, when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude;
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the daffodils.
This poem was featured on the Writer's Almanac today; one of my daily reads.
The image of the daffodils "fluttering and dancing in the breeze" is perfect for today.
Years ago, my work commute was a long drive in heavy traffic;
the last leg of the journey was along a street lined with giant suburban houses,
most built a long time ago with good architectural bones;
one of the property owners on this street planted daffodils along the roadside; masses of them.
The first year that I drove down that street in April
and saw all the daffodils in bloom
I gasped aloud at the sheer volume and beauty of the sight.
I was inspired to give my own burst of happiness to travelers
so I planted clumps of daffodils down on the roadside of my property.
Today, they still look beautiful;
the sand and salt from the winters killed off many clumps,
but for the most part
it is a sunny, happy display of spring.
Happiness can be yours just by looking at nature.
I smile and have a spring in my step each year when the flowers are in full display.
People have stopped and told me how much they like the flowers too.
Wednesday, April 13, 2011
Monday, April 11, 2011
A few weeks back I started to tell you about a woman who designed
perfect little houses
"in scale houses".
Her name was Barbara Garfield.
The houses are all clustered together in a seaside community in Connecticut
I was finally able to get some photos
and here is an old article about her work
Each summer we attend Shakespeare on the Sound;
the production is staged in on a grassy hill next to the Five Mile River,
across the street from Jo's Way, the cluster of houses
designed by Barbara "Jo" Garfield.
And each year I peak through the hedges to get a better view
of these tiny treasures.
I love the long windows, french doors and compact and efficient size.
Her houses were generally 1600 sq ft.
I am a small house person; my house is 1,500 sq. ft
and it is just right.
My little antique has been home for 20 years.
Finally Americans are learning that big is not always better.
The country seems to be in a downsize mode these days.
The pendulum is swinging.
Barbara was ahead of her time.
She started designing these houses in the 80's
as "a reaction to the McMansions",
soon to be the white elephants of the 21st century.
Sunday, April 10, 2011
Photo caption by Brian Rea for Modern Love column,
New York Times, April 7 , 2011
Being a mother is the best thing about my life.
This morning I read the most amazing story in the Modern Love column of the New York Times.
It is a powerful story of love and anguish.