Monday, December 28, 2009

Tanuki Power!

Outside front of bag (back is plain)
Inside of bag

My niece is on a Mario kick and I wanted to make her something fun with Mario on it for Christmas. I couldn't find any Mario fabric except for some $40/yard import stuff, so I found a Tanuki (my favorite of the Mario versions) t-shirt and made this little activity bag for her.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Mama's Got a Brand New Bag

Yeah! I finished my set of bags that I had been working on for the past couple of weeks. The red and black and the brown corduroy are on their way to other parts of the country and the birds and the tattoo bag are posted in my shop.

I was also pleased that my new wallet pattern turned out. I was commissioned to made the black and red bag and the buyer wanted a matching wallet, but she needed one larger than my "little wallet". I combined my wallet with a wristlet and tada - a wallet with plenty of room and a place to keep your change and a few other little necessities.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

The Jackson Street Polecats

Last night we met a couple of friends out at Cranky Pat's (Neenah, WI) the watch the musical stylings of the Jackson Street Polecats. It was a good show and I can honestly say that I do not remember the last time I saw somebody publicly play the jug.

The man on the far right of the photo told a funny joke that I am about to butcher because it really is a joke that must be told verbally, but because I enjoyed it so much, I will share it with you anyway:

Two whales go to the bar. One whale turns to the other one and says, "eeeeeeeeeee ooooooooooo brrrrrrrrrrrrr ooooo aaaaaaaaa" (90 seconds of whale noises).
The other whale looks at him and says, "man - you are really drunk."
Enjoy :)

Saturday, December 5, 2009

The Boss Throws a Christmas Party

This is my favorite remake of a Christmas classic - everytime this song comes on the radio I literally "shush" everybody. 

Monday, November 30, 2009

Work In Progress

I am really happy with how these are coming together so I just couldn't wait until they were finished to take a couple of pix. The red and black purse has already been claimed, but the others will soon be available in my Etsy shop.

When finished, they will be similar to the bag below.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Thanksgiving with the Mauks

Today I went to my parents' house for Thanksgiving dinner and was reminded how fortunate I was to grow up with wide open spaces. I would have to say it was a very modest upbringing, but I don't think I would trade growing up on 40 acres for an Upper East Side Manhatten apartment anyday (to be honest though, I don't know that I would have said the same thing when I was 15).

My dad and nieces decorate one of the pine trees (God bless mom - she's finishing up the dishes).

My husband has help putting lights on the treehouse.

How does my niece feel about my husband's contribution to decorating the treehouse?

Walking out to the cabin - mom did get to join us, but did not get in the picture.

Dad designed and built this cabin a few years ago.

This wind generator powers the lights and power outlets in the cabin (note background - a fraction of my parents' "backyard"). My dad, who is very passionate about wind energy, did most of the design and fabrication for this wind generator. Read more about it on his blog:

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Finally - Something for Me...

After months of making things for others and of course big batches of wallets, I was excited to finally have a moment to sneak in a new winter purse for myself! It's working title is the Double Flap Snap until I can think of something better.

I don't mean to ruin the mystique of my pattern making process, but here it is:
I draw what I want in my sketchbook, then decide what pieces I am going to need. If any of the parts are not a rectangle, I cut a full size pattern piece out of craft paper. The photo below shows my sketch and pattern for the purse above.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Happy Birthday!

A couple of months ago my friend Jen showed me a picture she took of her dog with her iPhone. I knew her birthday was coming up and wanted to make something special for her to thank her for being the first person to buy one of my handmade items.

The result is this 4" X 7" wristlet (made sure it was big enough for the iphone) featuring the ever adorable Earl.

I was even ambitious enough to put a label on the inside pocket!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

When One Door Closes, Bolio Opens...

Unfortunately Christa at Esrtwhiles, who was selling some of my handmade items, has decided to close her shop and move on to other ventures. At first I was a little bummed, but not far from her shop I happened to stop into Bolio, a new boutique on Menasha's Main Street and it seemed like a perfect venue.

I contacted Bolio (see the absolutely gorgeous photo above) and on Saturday I dropped off some of my wallets and mini wallets to add to thier fabulous inventory.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Mixed Blessing

We are dreadfully slow at work, so I have the day off. While I don't like to have to take the day off under those circumstances, it does give me time to move the 50 (it seemed like a fine idea when I started cutting) mini-wallets I am working on in a forward direction.

Like I have said in the past, it is more fun to start than to actually finish a project, but darn it, I am going to get these all folded and snapped by Sunday!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Darn Knit {Anyway}

Aimee from the sweet new boutique, Darn Knit {Anyway} in Stillwater, MN , has invited me to sell some of my cute, fun and sassy little wallets. I just finished up a group and some are on there way to her and the ones in the picture posted here are going to be listed in my Etsy shop.

In addition to work by regional artists, Darn Knit {Anyway} carries a wide variety of fabric & yarn and if that isn't enough -  they will be offering classes on how to do all sorts of fun things with that fabric & yarn! 

Friday, October 2, 2009

Consignment Time!

Great clothes, fun vintage stuff and now... Little Wallets!

If you are in the Menasha area, stop in at erstwhiles and check out all of Christa's treasures.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Thank You Jim Koch...

There are people who will always dream about doing what they love, but never do because it is safer to stay where they are, but not Jim Koch of Sam Adams. I don't think I have ever been so inspired by a commercial.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Labor Day Weekend '09

A few weeks ago my husband and I decided to jet off to Seattle for an extended Labor Day weekend. My Aunt Sheri lives out there and I haven't been to her place in over 10 years. I have seen her since then as she comes to Wisconsin a couple of times a year, but for some reason I just haven't made my way out there.
We had a great time and we will hopefully not wait as long for a return visit.

The majestic Snoqualmie Falls

Space Needle

Shaun & Sheri try on hats at the Bumbershoot Art Market

25 cents a dance - $1 for a good dance and $5 will get you the best dance ever

Sheri admires some outdoor ornaments

We took in some fun music

Feliz CompleaƱos! (Happy Birthday to Us!)

Having a few brewskies and learning the origins of Red Hook at the brewery tour

Plates - who needs 'em - we enjoyed seafood at the Crab Pot 

Tasting and learning about tea in downtown Seattle.

Sunday, August 30, 2009


At last, I have finished this purse. It is a larger version of a bag that I designed for myself. It measures approx 12.00" tall x 13.00" at its widest point and has a long strap that is adjustable. I am pretty pleased with this bag (and with the fact that is finally finished!).

I am also committed to making a matching wallet, but it needs to be larger than my "cute little wallet". I have some designs drawn up and I really would like to get that done before Halloween.

The pictures below are of the purse I designed for myself for the summer, but as September comes rolling in it means that I will have to design something more "fally".