Category Archives: projects

5 Ideas I will steal from Remodelista


This morning over coffee I looked through this Remodelista book. It is full of gorgeous ideas. Below are the 5 ideas I hope to steal from this book. The images below are not from this book. They are images I found on the internets. If you click on the image you will be taken to the source.

>> Dan Flavin Inspired Lighting

CCS Bard College , photos by chris kendall

CCS Bard College , photos by Chris Kendall

On page 73 of Remodelista is an example of using Dan Flavin inspired lighting in the angle where the ceiling meets the wall. It’s a high ceiling and the materials are raw. It works. Perhaps I could use this in the basement where I perform large messy craft projects. It is such a delightful surprise.

>> Trompe L’Oeil Runner


The only set of stairs in my house are to the basement but they are a fabulous set of old homemade stairs. Many of the steps are worn and rounded from so many years of use. It would be fun to paint the whole thing pale gray and give it a trompe l’oeil runner in a pop color like this green. And why not add this spill landing as seen above? I know, right.


>> Store Cutlery in  Mason Jar

I’ve actually seen this done in restaurants but I didn’t think to do this at home until I saw it in Remodelista. Now the cutlery is always on the dining room table where we need it.


>> Clipboards as Bulletin Boards

clipboards-on-wallThere is space just above our family desk to mount two clip boards, one for each of my boys. It would be a good place to hang important school forms.


>> Splatter Painted Floors


I have yet to update my kitchen. We tore up the hideous linoleum because a dirty bare floor was an improvement. It could be a decade before we can update my kitchen so in the meantime I think I will splatter paint the floor. Remodelista has a nice post about New England splatter-painted floors.  

This book is a Portsmouth Public Library book. If you are a member, you can place a hold on it here. xo jam

Enhabiten + Dyeing

I’ve known about Liane of Enhabiten since I saw an Etsy video about her back in 2009.  I really love her work and, for whatever reason, I like knowing that she lives in NH (my home state). I especially admire the work she is doing lately. She is dying secondhand and vintage items, giving them new life.  Look at these gorgeous t-shirts.  I love the blues and grays, the marks and lines.


I would live in this gray t-shirt all summer long over a pair of black pants with a pair of Birks.

upcycled shirt on wall

Below is a close up of a chair pad she made.  Just lovely.  You can see more pictures of her chair pads on her blog.  You can also find them for sale in her Etsy shop.


I also love how she is dyeing vintage doilies and table runners.  I have so many of these types of things tucked away.  I would like them so much more if I dyed them mustard.


mustard table runner

The project that she is working on that most delighted me is what she is doing with chenille.  I’ve seen chenille for sale in secondhand stores but never gave it a second thought.

When I saw these half moon pouches Liane was making I didn’t even recognize that they were made from secondhand chenille.  It looked to me like a material that she had embroidered.  Aren’t they lovely? She has a couple still available in her shop.

half moon pouch grey

half moon pouch indigoAll these images are from Liane’s blog – Enhabiten.  They are posted here with her permission.

Of course the other reason I have dyeing on the brain is because Shabd is coming to Kittery, Maine to teach a weekend workshop on dyeing.  It is scheduled for Mother’s Day weekend (May 10 + 11, 2014).  The registration page just when live yesterday.  Join the fun.  Email me at if you have any questions.



Way back in 2005, before I started blogging and before Pinterest was on the scene — I kept an Idea book.  I cut and taped images and recipes into a journal.  While cleaning my craft room today, I came across three discs with scans of my entire 2005 Idea book.  Below is a collage of snippets from that journal.  And below that are links to three pdfs that include the scans of the entire journal.  Enjoy.


2005 Idea Book Part 1, Part 2, Part 3


I’m curious about tie-dyeing and natural dyeing.  I recently purchased TIE-DYE by Shabd.  My boys and I have done some simple tie-dye projects in the past.  This book will help us attempt some more challenging projects.

tie-dye-bookI’m also curious about natural dyes.  I checked out Harvesting Color by Rebecca Burgess from my local library.

harvesting-color-bookI’m particularly interested in this project called Spring Dye Starter.  Basically you get a sample of blossoms, place them under prepared fabric and whack it with a mallet. <see below> Let the fabric dry and then iron it to help it set. The dyed fabric swatch would make a precious keepsake or a lovely wrap for a tiny gift, tied up with string.   This project hits that sweet spot where kids would have fun and be learning at the same time.


wrap dressing

I’m gearing up to sew this summer. I literally have not sewn a complete dress for 12 years.  I sewed a Marilyn Monroe white dress for my cousin for Halloween back in 2000.  I clearly remember cursing through the whole process.  I also remember thinking — no wonder fine clothing is so expensive — this is hard!!!  I’m going to start by sewing a version of the Swirl wrap dress. Partly because I love this style of dress but also because there is no zipper or sleeves involved.

swirl-dress-on-etsy-swanee grace

Images via SwaneeGrace. Click on the image to be taken to her shop on Etsy.

I bought three vintage patterns from Etsy.  I will sew something very similar to the dress above.vintage-patterns-from-etsy

I am getting ahead of myself but I already did buy fabric.  I just had to.  I bought this fabric by Sarah Watts.


I initially thought that I could sew a dress using vintage sheets but when I shopped around I couldn’t find anything I liked.  I’ll keep looking.  The green dress below is made from a vintage sheet.  I found it on Flickr.  I love it.  I’d live in that dress.  Both the dresses below are made by Wendy Hill.


Images via Wendy Hill. Click on the image to be taken to her shop on Etsy.

These dresses below are also made with vintage sheets.  I think they are absolutely stunning.   They would look especially fabulous if they were  worn by a gaggle of bridesmaids.  They were designed and created by Naughty Shorts.


Image via Naughty Shorts. Click on the image to be taken to her blog.

And if all that isn’t enough inspiration for you — I’m also thinking of trying to knock-off the tie-front Mociun dress.  It has the same ease as the Swirl wrap dress.

There are a lot of sewing ladies on the interwebs doing their best to make their own version of that dress.  My favorite version is made by Sarah over on I wish I were Nancy Drew.


One last thing.  Remember when I wrote about how is the best new thing in the world?  Well — it still is, BUT I have discovered another best new thing — Creativebug.  Creativebug is like but for crafters.  I’m pretty sure I’ll watch some instructional videos before I start sewing.

xo jam