Dapple Design Shop will be CLOSED FOR CHRISTMAS from December 10, 2016 to January 4, 2017.

Sunday, 29 September 2013

On This Rainy Sunday

It's been raining for two days and nights, a strong, steady rain.  The Great Wet has begun.  I try not to think of the dark days that will come, focusing instead on cozy, inside things.  Fall.  Thanksgiving.  Christmas.  Quiet evenings by the fire.

I spent the morning tidying my life and my kitchen.  Produce is still trickling in from the garden, a reminder that summer hasn't quite left us.  This morning I sliced two trays worth of tomatoes for drying.  Miss S watched from her high chair, munched a handful of diced tomato, and asked for "mo".  

I haven't dried tomatoes before this year, but I don't know why not.  It's easy and the results are yum yum yummy.  I core and slice the tomatoes, sprinkle them with kosher salt, thyme and a little brown sugar.  Then it's low and slow in the oven -- about 5 or 6 hours at 225.

Last night was Craft Night.  That consisted of three girls, a bottle of wine, some snacks and a DIY wreath project.  This is mine.

Don't you love the texture?  All those paper circles are punched from a thrift store version of Wuthering Heights.  That little detail really thrills me.  All that bluster up on the moors makes Wuthering Heights the perfect novel to punch to pieces on a blustery fall night.  Of course the wreath isn't quite done.  I want to add a bit more fullness around the outside edge and some sort of banner or bow.

By the way, the DIY instructions for this project came from Make Life Lovely.  Thanks to my friend, Amanda, for making Craft Night happen.  Let's do it again.

Wishing you a warm and cozy remains for the weekend.
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Friday, 27 September 2013

My New Venture

At the end of my last post I briefly mentioned that my new Dapple Design Shop is up and running on Etsy.  I'm actually pretty excited about this new venture.  Ideas fill my head.  Too many to execute, so I'm starting off simple with a product that I think everyone can appreciate:  gift bags.

I've been dabbling in alternative gift wrap for a while, mostly because I can't stomach the wastefulness of single-use, disposable wrapping paper and ribbons.  For years we wrapped gifts in nothing but the plain white paper scrap that the wide-format printer at my husband's office spit out.  That may sound dull, but it wasn't.  The bright white paper presented an ideal backdrop for stamping, painting, collaging or simply tying ribbons.  Sadly, a new printer at the office has dried up the flow of paper scrap, leaving me in need of a new, non-wasteful way to wrap presents.

My husband's birthday was earlier this week and these three presents were for him.  Don't they look nice?  The wrappings belong to my new line of fabric gift bags that can be used again and again.  Unlike paper gift bags -- which some people hang onto, while others chuck -- these cloth bags look and feel like part of the gift, not just the disposable packaging.  That makes them far more likely to be re-used.

These images are from the Dapple Design Shop.  I've only  just begun, but I'm working to add a deep variety of fabrics -- something for everyone.  If you haven't already, please drop in for a visit. 

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Thursday, 19 September 2013

Recent Happenings and an Announcement

The official start of fall is just a few days away, and I'm already getting into the spirit.  I savor the satisfying crunch of those first fallen leaves and the comforting weight of an extra quilt on the bed.  The days are still bright and warm.  The long rain has not yet begun.

And I'm busy.  Busy turning this . . .
into this . . .

At last count, my humble backyard had produced over 100 lbs of tomatoes alone.  Keeping up has been something of a challenge, but I think I am, at last, on the home stretch.

All that gardening and preserving -- and, to be honest, laying on the grass with Miss S -- has taken time away from other pursuits.  Like sewing.  This is what my sewing desk looked like early in the week . . .
It has since been excavated and recovered with different clutter -- the clutter of new and revived projects.   That brings us to my big announcement. 

I am very pleased to announce the opening of the Dapple Design Shop on Etsy.  I've launched a line of hand-crafted, reusable, fabric gift bags.  Please stop by to admire my first offerings and stock up on gift wrap.  There's much, much more to come.

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