Wednesday, September 30, 2009

protect the house

lively up your dining room! here are some more colorful, coiled trivets to protect your surfaces from hot pots and pans. go ahead and blaze your fire without burning the table. two diameters to satisfy your desires; 7" and 9".

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

accessorizing the accessories

fumble and fiddle no more with those tiny zippers.

chickadee zipper pulls are here!

a lovely addition to our little line-up of portable pockets

Monday, September 28, 2009

washington dc, it's paradise to me...

it is the people doing something friends morgan hungerford, nilay lawson and their merry band of panda head pranksters. they're at it again with issue number five of their fabulous online magazine highlighting what's hot in dc fashion, photography, music and art. please join this chickadee in congratulating the gang as they celebrate their first birthday, one whole year of greatness. our little panda's all growns up...

photo: joshua cogan
from issue five of panda head mag

see you saturday!

come see this chickadee and craft companion dandelion blu!
we'll be in booth #133 (near the bicycle valet and hello craft area)

Friday, September 25, 2009

that rug really tied the room together

this particular quote is a repeat offender. it sold out at the last show but it is going to be a standard offering because of its awesomeness. the chickadee abides...

note the glitter camo sides:

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

no fun, my babe, no fun

hmmm...sort of hard to read the text in the photo.
it says: "why don't you like fun?"

well....why don't you?

Monday, September 21, 2009

a week of wall pillows

wall pillows are a pretty new product in the chickadee menagerie. here's how they are hatched:

  1. start with a quote...a song lyric or line from a movie mostly. but you never know...
  2. machine embroider that quote with a little embellishment onto a neutral fabric.
  3. patchwork pretty fabrics all around.
  4. wrap the patchwork square around an 8"x10" canvas that's been cushioned with several layers of quilt batting.
  5. hang on the wall and admire how it ties the room together.

there will be several of these downy decorations on display at crafty bastards (on october 4th, if you didn't know). this week is devoted to divulging them to you, the devoted fans of one crazy chickadee. eventually the line-up will expand and maybe even include some custom orders!

here's today's wall pillow:

and a peek at the posterior:

Friday, September 18, 2009

shop talk

the little shop of chickadee will take a temporary vacation beginning at midnight tonight.

if you want to be sure to get that certain something you've been dreaming of, get your order in now! the shop's current inventory is going to get out and play on october 4th at crafty bastards so come check it out there. and look for the shelves to be restocked with goodies after the show!

Thursday, September 17, 2009


plenty of portable pockets heading your way! and these handy zips now have a bit more zing.

still the same 4 1/2" x 8 1/2" size, they are a perfect place to stash your various bits and assorted bobs. a layer of interfacing makes them stiff and sturdy. pieces of flair make them cute and coordinated.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

hey hot stuff

piping hot pans pulled out of the oven and steaming sautées slipped from the stove are always welcome at the chickadee table. and now they have a place to rest their sizzling surfaces. please set a place for the new coiled cotton trivets (that's a fancy word for hot plate).

these are made from clothesline that has been covered with cotton and coiled...just like their cousins the bowls. right now they are appearing in 7" and 9" diameters and there are some thoughts to add another size. please give them a warm welcome when they make their debut at crafty bastards on october 4th!

Monday, September 14, 2009

better bowls

now this is more like it...

two large and one little coiled bowl. made from clothesline and repurposed linens. made just for you and whatever you might want to toss into them.

Friday, September 11, 2009

on the campaign trail

the washington city paper and urban outfitters are sponsoring the 2009 craftiest bastard contest! details are below. don't forget to click the link to vote for your favorite chickadee! and tell a friend or two...

The Craftiest Bastard of 2009 Contest

Our friends at Urban Outfitters are excited to bring back the Craftiest Bastard contest. All Crafty Bastards craft vendors are eligible for the contest. The winner will be decided based on the number of votes cast online through Sunday October 4th and physical ballots received at the festival on Saturday, October 3rd.

The three vendors with the most votes cast in their favor will be awarded one of the following prizes:

Grand Prize: $500 gift certificate to Urban Outfitters + Winner Promotion in one City Paper 1/4 page print ad + 1 Crafty Bastards eblast

2nd Place: Washington City Paper advertising ($500 value)

3rd Place: Crafty Bastards prize pack filled with City Paper goodies

Thursday, September 10, 2009

i've got sunshine on a cloudy day

well, the sewing part of bowl making didn't quite work out as it should. the new cording material experiment was a smashing fail. the needle side looks great, but the bobbin side is a ridiculous tangle of thread. everything was tried...rethreading, changing thread, changing needles, changing feet..until finally a day was called a day in the sewing room. and it was back to wrapping once again. hopefully round two will spiral along smoothly...

here's a look at what went wrong:

and now a look at what went right:

this is another lovely lacy pattern from kristen kapur or through the loops. the jeanne shawl is named in honor of her mother. the suggested yarn, anne by schaefer yarn company, bears the same name as my gramma. it was going to be a very special project right from the start. unfortunately, after many delightful hours spent knitting on a plane and in outdoor european cafes, the needles that it resided on were relinquished to the very thorough munich airport security personnel. the future was looking bleak, quite a contrast to the sunny, optimistic yellow hue of the lace itself. but new needles and a renewed spirit brought it back to life!

and lively it is indeed.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

under wraps

more bowls coming soon!
they'll be ready right in time for crafty bastards.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009


here's a refreshing, end of summer treat. and yes, yet another triangular shawl. the clothilde pattern by kristen hanley cardozo (aka: knitting kninja) was just too cute to resist. and there was this luscious wool/cashmere blend from woolarina that had been patiently waiting for just the right thing to come along.

there's nothing stealth or ninja-like about the chickadee version (except that it was knit with ninja-like quickness). bright pinks are accented with creamsicle orange for a vibrant overall feel. knitted with the instructions for a large size, this one blocks out the sun when blocked...eclipsing the dimensions estimated in the pattern. it is a huge helping of sherbet that will be reminiscent of summer even after the season fades.

Friday, September 4, 2009

smock it to me

here's a project completed with the help of sharpie style pattern preservation. a lovely little smock that any 80's elementary art teacher would be proud to wear. there's plenty of protection from finger paint and pockets for macaroni, crayons and chalk. all from a lovely little thrifted pattern that will now stand the test of time.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

we are the vintage pattern preservation society

ah, thrift stores. where would we be without you? certainly at a loss for treasures of days gone by. you are a ripe hunting ground for the forgotten but not yet gone to the trash. a place to find what has been misplaced, to take what is old and make it new again. an excellent place for thrifty threads and the stuff to stitch them together.

here's a favorite find from a recent adventure:

this pattern, circa 1985, was just begging for some new life. but 20+ year old pattern paper is a fragile creature that needs a lot of tlc. thankfully, there's a way to preserve this by-gone charm for all time. for the chickadee method of pattern preservation, you just need a sharpie and a bit of muslin or other fabric to trace on.

start by cutting around the pattern pieces that you are interested in. don't cut right on the line, leave a bit of a border. you'll be tracing the pattern and you want the original lines to be intact. then gently press the pattern paper with a warm iron (no steam!) to remove the wrinkles.

pin the pattern piece to muslin or other appropriate scrap fabric. instead of snipping around the shape, take your trusty sharpie and trace the lines of the pattern. a fresh sharpie is best for this sort of thing, one with lots of ink. but be mindful, the angled tip can sometimes snag the thin paper. go slow and let the ink sink into the fabric below. be sure to recreate all of the appropriate markings like notches and grain lines. if your fabric is thin (like muslin) you might want to consider protecting the surface underneath as the marker will bleed through.

once you are finished tracing, remove the paper. marvel at the miraculous power of the sharpie. your pattern should now appear on the fabric. cut out the fabric pieces along the border lines and they are ready to be placed on the actual fabric that you'll be making your garment out of. pin them in place, cut, transfer markings and reuse as many times as you want. no need to worry about the paper disintegrating or ripping. this is also a great way to make several pattern sizes without interfering with the integrity of the pattern.

note: don't trace directly on to the fabric that you plan to sew, these marks are permanent and permeate! so they'll definitely show up on the finished product.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

it was the best of was the worst of times...

it was the 70's

new bags to match your bell bottoms
now appearing at fibre space