I wiped away the weeds & foam. / I fetched my sea-born treasures home... Ralph Waldo Emerson

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Happy Halloween!


Happy Halloween, a bit early because some time tomorrow I'll need to post my Flags blocks.

Over the past couple weeks I've been cleaning and decluttering and changing my cottage's ''look'' from its summery blue and white to the soft sepia browns and taupe of autumn sand and dunes and grasses. With a dash of pumpkin spice here and there, the rooms look peaceful and serene, but not boring. [or so I hope,lol.]

This year I've been keeping things very low key. Having a puppy in the house means no fresh berries like bittersweet or other temptations for a baby who wants to eat everything.

I washed all the yelloware bowls in the corner cabinet and dispersed all the treasures accumulated in the bowls. I think the bowls show off better and they're ready for their Christmas pine and old ornaments soon.

The blue and white china is stored, replaced by favorite brown Staffordshire transferware. Not many turkey plates yet, I save them for Thanksgiving.

The dining room sideboard with fall pitchers and dried flowers.

More drieds hanging on the cupboard edge.

Bowls filled with scented candles, or Halloween candy.


I love that this brown glazed bowl has embossed stars on the sides!

And I filled my special candy dish, an heirloom from my aunt's home, with Hershey minis this year. I hope I have trick or treaters so I don't have to eat all the candy myself. (Nope, my kids wouldn't dream of eating chocolate, I'm on my own with that.)

Colorful mums in a loved pitcher...

The flowers look just like the stylized design, don't they?

This runner was a thrift shop find. I think it needs to be taken apart and re-backed, but this is it for now.

A couple of mercury glass pumpkins but no berries or leaves in the crocks this year. [Mo].


My little cutie guy, with a fragrant candle inside:

Bright quilts, to offset the taupe and cream throw pillows.


Entry bench with real pumpkins. Mo isn't allowed here so I could have a few real pumpkins, tiny though they are.

"I can do tricks for treats, mommy!"

For November, I'll switch the quilts to more prim, browner choices, and I'll add more candles and mercury glass pretties. Candlelight and sweet scents of cinnamon, apples, and woodsmoke to ward off the sudden darkness of "Fall Back", a despised event here at the beach.

It's fun to have a change of scenery, isn't it?

Happy Halloween.



gone to the beach............

so calm today. 2 years since Sandy.

and a tiny bird on the sunflower head.
I'm thrilled even if she's maybe just a sparrow.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Autumn Sundays and a Few Etsy Cuties


Hi everyone! I hope you had a wonderful weekend. Now that beach days are over it looks as if a new Autumn Sundays routine is forming here at the beach: flea market / doggy park/ some sewing on the sunny deck. Good times!

I was off ''early'' to the flea market yesterday.
Mo and I had a long walk then I left him with my friends for his Sunday playdate. [when he's older, I hope to bring him with me to the flea....] Mo can be left alone now for a few hours but he is MUCH happier if he can be with his extended family who have toys and food and a lovely safe enclosed back yard.

The flea was fun and busy but no treasure to be found. Too bad. I saved the day by stopping at the thrift shop. Hooray! Good stuff there and the price is so right.
Cool old quart Mason jars, 99 cents each. I took the two oldest ones.

Perfect condition, pale aqua color.

Nice zinc lids. (Weird aged-on rubber gasket, a testament to the jar's age.]

 This one has the patent date embossed, 1858! [on right,below] Though of course it could have been made any time since then, I have to look it up.

I use these in my kitchen for non-food items, like dishwasher candies, silver teaspoons for tea, tea balls, etc. And also for my button collection, and for the sand I use in my sewing emeries, shown here sifted and drying on the deck in the bright sunshine.


Or for corralling finished sewing berries!

And I found this pair of adorable turkeys for my Thanksgiving table! Also 99 cents, for the pair.

Are they cute or awful? I've wanted some kitschy ceramic turkeys for ages. I can see some eye rolls now, if I use them on the table...so maybe they'll be tucked among the yelloware bowls instead?

Heck, for 99 cents, I can take them back after the holiday if we deicide they're just too tacky.
(No, no! This is their forever home. They'll be so sad, you can't un-adopt them! Okay, okay. Yeesh.)
I love the one on the right's expression, how she is giving the other guy a glare: "Don't even think about watching football during dinner, dear!"

When I got home I discovered Mo's babysitters had taken him to the doggy park.

I thought about joining them , it was such a nice day---but a few hours to work uninterrupted was so tempting. I finished my Flags blocks [Friday reveal]

just a peek: "Snakey"!

---and a few etsy items that have languished on my worktable since August when my hand went bad.
"Double pink'' sewing strawberries:

all pink strawberries are SOLD Thank You!

This one is so tattered! I loved the tiny scrap of quilt block with the bright pink and pretty spring green. She is prim and humble but so sweet. [Entirely lined inside with another antique calico.]

And a fat pink berry. Candy stripes and calico, pale green hand dyed linen leaves....

And here he is! My first little sewing bird.

A little robin [bluebird?] sitting on his tuffett, strawberry around his neck or in his beak.

[what do you guys think? Leave the berry loose?].

The little papier mache box was painted with blue chalk paint, antiqued, lined with vintage-y papers. Another strawberry inside!


I also cut out a few heart sachets and planned some prim linen Christmas stockings! So my etsy shop should be fun and filled with good things for fall, winter, and Christmas gifting.
Amazing what one can get done without a ''toddler'' in the house! LOL!



gone to the beach............

PS The etsy items should be available by Wednesday in my shop, but if you see something you like, you can email me and buy right here [PayPal], with FREE shipping.



Friday, October 24, 2014

Cheddar Quilt

Hi everyone! This has been a windy and rainy week so my post today is an indoors show and tell.  


Mo is hibernating! So instead I want to show you my favorite antique October quilt.

I love this quilt. I never tire of it, maybe because I only use it between Columbus Day and Halloween? Or because of its classic American antique quilt charm?
It is not a show piece, it's a utilitarian scrap bag quilt, what my quilting friend Lori might term a humble quilt.

It's just 9-patch blocks with a red and natural muslin border [Puss-in-the-corner?],

...set in cheddar solid with muslin cornerstones that match the muslin back.

But I think this unknown quilter had an ''eye'' for color and design. The general scheme is autumn-y, the patches mostly reds, some now faded to tan, and black.

Some of the cornerstones' red has faded, the tan blocks were probably red also.

There's a few pale dull purple squares, some blues that serve as ''white'' and maybe three bright indigo blue nine patches!

Autumn leaves and October sky...

The fabrics are cotton calico, no feedsacks. I would date this quilt perhaps 1880-1910, just guessing.
All sewed by hand and set into this gorgeous solid cheddar.

I love the quilting too. Such texture from a simple Baptist fan motif.

I like the way the fans come from each side, as if it was quilted in a large frame, maybe by the maker's friends at a sewing bee or by church sewing group. Where the fans meet in the center, the quilter[s] simply added a few random lines, determined to secure the somewhat bulky cotton batting.
The back is simple muslin.


Turned to the front for a narrow binding, which you can see along the bottom of this block..

I bought this quilt many years ago. My mother spotted it in the window of an antiques shop in Dennis MA, on Cape Cod, as we were meandering along route 6A (Old Kings Highway! The Pilgrims rode and walked these same trails!), enjoying the splendor of Fall on Cape Cod.

google images

 It has been washed, in fact I think my mom washed it before she let it in the house, lol. Otherwise hardly used, perfect condition.
It's one of the few quilts I own [except for flea market rescues] that was not purchased from a dealer, with provenance and history.  (Some too ''good'' to use, like this cutie. )


 I so wish I knew who made my simple cheddar October quilt, when, where?
All that remains is her talented sewing and good design.



gone to the beach.....



Mo's Halloween nightmare.

LOL and he looked so peaceful, at the top of this post.