Admittedly, this advent display for Rylie looks a little overblown and superfluous, I'm sure. As Ryan likes to point out, "Advent sure looks fun." But, I can explain. I'm inspired by all of the creative ideas that people do for advent calendars or vessels: this and this and this come to mind. I want to start the advent tradition for Rylie, but I don't want to give her small tokens or sweets just yet. She is still a baby and small things are always lost, not to mention, not so easily digested when they inevitably end up in her mouth. I love the idea of filling each day with a different activity or holiday outing, but feel she is still a bit young for that as well. Really, for her, it is all about sharpening up those fine motor skills and ripping paper off boxes. I also did not want to fill the house with more stuff. I've been trying to be very mindful of our stuff accumulation and being completely intentional about what surrounds us in our home. So, I was milling this all around in my head, sifting it through, not sure if I was committed to doing advent this year or not.
One bright Saturday morning, I went to a mega-super-100-family garage sale fundraiser called Garage Palooza. With Rylie at home with daddy, I was able to roll up my sleeves and hunt for bargains. I ended up leaving with lots of clothes, shoes, toys and books for Rylie. I was contemplating whether I should just add these items to the mix or if I should save some of it for Christmas, when it dawned on me. This bounty could be the perfect solution for advent gifts. So here we are. I had seen this, oh how I would love to tie all of those packages end to end with string and hang them from the ceiling. Can you imagine what fun that would be to cut a new package off everyday until Christmas? But I thought that a string of presents hanging from the ceiling might be cumbersome for our limited space and I thought Rylie would be attracted to it far more often than would be convenient. We still have to eat, bathe and sleep around here, now don't we?
I wrapped them all up and turned them into a fun display on our shelving console. It works with the overall Christmas vibe we have going on and I like all of the colors and tags. Very festive. Advent, does indeed look fun. Rylie is loving it too and I have on more than one occasion glimpsed her using her drum as a stool so that she could reach those presents. I hope she can hold out for the whole month, because it is kind of thrilling to wake to a new present each day.
The only new purchases I made for this was a few ornaments for the tree. So, a lot of ceremony and fuss at very little cost. As Rylie grows, we will likely go down a more traditional route with small tokens: cookies, an eraser, an ice-skating afternoon, but until then I am totally digging the advent bonanza around here.
I thought I would continue the show offiness around here and share a few other things I found during a recent trip to a local thrift shop.
This book from the late 1960s is all about a little girl and her love of aprons. I can definitely relate with her. The big climax of the story is when she goes to visit her daddy at the printshop where he works and finds out that he wears an apron too. The fact that her dad is a typesetter charmed me to no end.
I simply adore this style! It is all of my favorite things: sixties, folksy, colorful and sweet. On the same trip, same shop I picked up this first ediition Dr. Seuss book.
It is missing its dust jacket, but the guy at the thrift shop gave it to me at no charge, so I really can't complain. Oh, and I also got an assortment of cloth napkins.
We are choosing to use cloth over paper whenever we can. Ok, maybe tomorrow I will post somehting other than my treasures (maybe).
Ryan, Rylie and I had the great pleasure of hitting up some yard sales this past weekend. We never seem to get out as early as we should, but we found some pretty great stuff regardless. Like this red folding table for $10! I'm not sure what we are going to do with it yet, but hey, it was 10 bucks!
I found multiple yards of all of these great fabrics:
I love this one above and I can see it as a birthday dress for Rylie, with a matching skirt for Mama, what do you think? Can you believe it is time to start thinking about Rylie's birthday? It's only six weeks away! My baby is going to be one year old! Ah, but I digress, back to my weekend treasures. I also got this beautiful butterfly fabric. On the selvedge it says: Alfred Shaheen Hand Printed in Hawaii.
After posting my "curtains" here the other day, I was inspired to photograph and show you my whole collection of aprons. They hang on three little hooks in my back laundry area and I just love them so. I have been committing myself to actually using these more often because, even though they are very beauiful, they are meant to be used and messed on, right? These are mostly gifts from my very sweet Mother-In-Law, as I mentoned before, she definitely spoils me :) So let the apron parade begin:
**These two are vintage and appear to be from the same pattern. I got these at a Flea Market in Long Beach a while back.
** This is perhaps my favorite! It is very similar to the other two and I got it at the same time, same place.
**This one is very sweet with embroidered detail around the bottom and on the pocket (very hard to see in this photo, sorry)
**Oh, this one is so cute! I just got it for my birthay this year from Ann, my mom-in-law. It is the perfect minty gingham with what I believe is called "chicken scratch embroidery."
**This one is a super lightweight, gauzy material with stamped fruit on the bottom and pocket. Do you like my pose? I was running to get the stick from Rylie that she was about to eat, hee hee (never a dull moment.)
**Love this sassy orange and green patchwork. It has ric-rac along the bottom edge. I got this one a few years ago now at the Rose Bowl.
**Two of my favorites: birds and aqua! This is Athropologie from my sis-in-law.
Last weekend, we were in our neighborhood thrift shop picking out treasures. After convincing Ryan that, yes, we did need a miniature root beer mug and a cute, Made in Japan ladel, I dropped all of that stuff and went slack-jawed when I saw these on the bookshelf.
What? Craft and creativity books published in 1974?
Yes please, how much?
$10 for all of them?
Let's start with the covers, shall we? The big, bold color photography drew me right in. But listen to some of the topics covered: hooked rugs, baby foods, ant farms, hibachi, canoeing, dried flowers, cheeses and churning, and the list goes on and on. Every time I look at them I get all giddy with a rush of craft aspirations. Could I really cut an old pickle jar to create canisters for beans, grains and spices? Is there a way that I could turn the garage into a workshop and get a welding gun? But I actually think I could start with the familiar and that would keep me occupied for several months, if not years. And I don't even have the complete set of books. Viva the 70s!
Just another little piece of the nursery/studio that is coming together. I like the way that everything is shaping up in here. It is one room with many functions but it is all put together rather seamlessly. It is bright and full of print and pattern, not a typical, soft nursery. There is art and fabric on the walls, a little vintage charm thrown in here and there. With the addition of the seat cushion above, the handmades are starting to let their presence be known around here too.
I made this cushion using Alicia Paulson's Summerhouse Seat Cushion pattern. It was pretty quick and easy because of Alicia's extra cool magic interfacing technique. The pattern was well worth five dollars just to learn that method, I love it! Plus, I love seeing all forty of my fabrics sitting together like that in tiny little patches. The back of the cushion is pink and ecru Mod Buds to match the ties. This particular chair has a bit of a challenging seat shape, it would have been easier to do something square. But all in all, I am very happy with the result.
Ryan and I have lived in this apartment for 3 years now and when we first moved it in we were in awe of all of our extra space. Our previous place was like 600 square feet or something ridiculous like that. But now, we are starting to grow out of this space too. Decorating, painting and fixing up a rental is a conundrum to be sure. You never really know how long you will be in a space and you definitely do not want it to be ugly while you are living there. Yet, you know that one day you will leave it all behind and you will start all over in a fresh space, which is thrilling in it's own right. I really hope that our next move is a bit more permanent though. Fingers crossed.
Hi, meet our new puppy. He is kid-friendly and never barks. Isn't he the cutest?
Okay, okay, but this is one adorable and sweet book cover, don't you think? The Poky Little Puppy is just one of the many Little Golden Books that we have picked up for our baby girl. We got this one last week at the antique market. I had a huge collection of books when I was a kid, Little Golden Books, and others. I remember I had this plastic, orange Fisher Price record player and a bunch of books that included records and I would just listen to stories for hours and hours. Slowly, but surely we are building a collection of books for our girl too.
And slowly, but surely I am making some progress on the nursery/studio space. Vintage and animals, that is the very loose theme that I started out thinking about with this space. A lot of what we have done follows those two ideas, but we've also got some modern touches here and there. Not these vinyl stickers though, they are straight out of the late 60s and I could not resist them when I saw them at the market last week. They work in perfect with the other colors in the room.
Oh, well, this definitely fits the theme, don't you think? On the back of this sweet little lamb picture it reads:
This is a Magic Picture. It Glows in the Dark. After a short exposure to any light, portions of this picture will be luminous and visible in the dark. The darker the room the brighter the picture glows. Exposure to any light "recharges" the picture, and it will last indefinitely. The luminous material contains no radium, phosphorous or other poisonous material.
It still works! Isn't that amazing? It really does last indefinitely. And don't you think it is so nice that they let you know that it contains no poison material?
My mom sent us a package last week with a little dress and socks for Baby Scott to wear home from the hospital. She bought my sister's little girl the same dress in the hopes that someday her two granddaughters will save the dresses and their daughters will wear them home from the hospital. Sweet, don't you think? In with her package, she sent me three baby blankets that she found in my hope chest that is still in her house. One of them is an adorable crocheted afghan from when I was a baby. The one above she thinks was my grandmother's when she was a baby, that would have been in the 30s.
The blanket above was also my grandmother's. Isn't this little bonnet girl so cute? I can hardly stand it. I am so ready to meet our girl and I am just keeping myself busy around here, nesting and getting prepared. It seems like I have been pregnant for ages, but at the same time it seems pretty unbelievable that Ryan and I are about to become parents! There is no way that we can even begin to imagine what those first moments with her will feel like. Complete and utter endorphin-aided euphoria, I'm told.
So I heard that there were some nice, soft shaggy options at Target right now, and we headed over there. This rug is pretty nice quality for the price and I have to say, a lot better than what was available at Ikea. The cashier scolded us at length for buying a white rug when we were about to have a baby. I'm sure she probably has a point, but it was the one that I liked best. Plus, it's not like we are choosing between a college fund or a rug. It was pretty cheap. There you go; all that you ever wanted to know about the nursery-rug-buying process.I've got some more goodies from yesterday to show you, so I will share those with you as they are put into effect here in the studio/nursery. Now, I need to start thinking about dinner. I am always amazed at how quickly that time of day rolls around. There are a lot of variables to consider when thinking up dinner; what do I feel like eating, what does Ryan feel like eating, what do we have, what is quick, what is healthy, what is tasty, etc. I love this cookbook that I bought a few months back and I love the idea and philosophy of a whole foods diet, it just takes more time, ya know? It's totally worth it though, I know that. Especially after all of that ice-cream last week!
Before Ryan and I went to the Arboretum on Sunday, we stopped in early at the Rose Bowl Flea Market. It is quite the event and Ryan and I have found plenty of goodies there over the years. Vendors and shoppers come from all over to buy and sell, and I have more than once seen crews from the HGTV shows filming there. Because of its popularity, good deals are a little more elusive at this FM than others in the area. That being said, the place is abundant with eye candy and a really fun way to spend a Sunday morning. I am generally more curious and wander-y than Ryan, he is more business when he is there. He'll be about 25 paces in front of me before he realizes that I am fondling some vintage tea towels or ogling some amazing clown sculpture. Ryan is always on the search for a Sea Captain painting. He saw one there a while back and didn't buy it and he has been living in regret ever since. The yarn art piece above is just up my alley though we let this one go. As are these bright vintage prints.The place is so full of amazing things that I sometimes get overwhelmed to the point of paralysis. Meaning, I love everything so much that I end up buying nothing. I simply can not decide. Another phenomenon of the giant flea market is searching for something very specific and not being able to find it to save your life. You can guarantee that when you go back next month, the place will be flooded with that one item. This has happened to us on many occasion. For instance, before we were married we circled the whole place upside down and backwards looking for a bird cage so that our guests could put cards in it at our wedding. No luck, nothing, nada. Every time I have been back there since, the place is teeming with bird cages. It should actually be called The Rose Bowl Flea Market and Bird Cage Emporium. This time we were there looking for things like a rocking chair, storage solutions, a smaller more kid friendly coffee table, and I wanted to find a cutesy vintage-y shelf for the nursery. We did not find any of those items to suit our fancy. However, we did by a few old and well worn Little Golden Books.
Treehouse Collective had a booth there too and we found this adorable jumper from the 50s in size 18 months. I love this color green and Baby Scott does not have a whole lot of it in her closet yet. Here it is! Their prices were much lower at the FM than on their site, so I guess there are good deals to be found after all!