Tuesday, June 28, 2005
I am spilling all my secrets to you tonight! It must be the heat effecting me. LOL
Everyone does things differently in the "prim world". I learned that really quickly.
But for those starting out and who aren't sure....I will share my way.
Its not written in stone. Take this and play around with it until you find something that you enjoy.
~My Witches Brew~
That is what my family likes to call the stuff I use to stain my sheets and dolls.
I used to create it using tea. I made it with coffee one afternoon and have been hooked on the effect ever since.
The kitchen sink or my big pot is what I make this all in.
I boil a good couple of kettles of hot water.
Take a 1/4 cup coffee and dump it into the boiled water.
Take a long handled wooden spoon and stir carefully. Don't splash and burn yourself.
I take a cheese cloth baggie and add the following...... cinnamon sticks that I have broken smaller; whole cloves; whole nutmeg that I have grated on the side of; anise star.
This baggie steeps in the coffee mixture and adds a spicy scent to the coffee.
I also add about 1/4 vanilla to the mixture.
The sheets are added one at a time. Fully covered and stirred around in the mix.
These are left in the mix for anywhere from 15 minutes to a couple of hours.
I then take each sheet out. Wring them out and get ready to dry them!
Many times I have been asked this question so I thought I would sit down and blog about it tonight. Its not something I expect everyone to start doing. It works for me and I thought I'd pass the info on is all.
I do NOT buy muslin to create my dolls from!
There.....I have said it. Its down in print in black and white! LOL
Nova Scotia is blessed with some wonderful second hand shops and I am quite the shopper at them! I go to them every few weekends and buy every WHITE COTTON BEDSHEET I can lay my hands upon.
My secret is out!
All of my dolls have been created from bedsheets that I have dunked in my special blend of coffee and spices. My "witches brew" as family loves to call it.
I have a huge old lobster pot or I just fill the kitchen sink with my witches brew.
Either can hold a good number of sheets at a time. I think the most I have done at one time is 7 sheets! That is ALOT of dolls! LOL
You can cut and sew a wicked amount of doll parts from one bedsheet!
So next time you are out to the local second hand store....check the linen!!!!!!!!!
Mary has blessed my life with her friendship ever since I became a member over on FOA.
Folk-of-Art was a forum that I went to thinking it would be a great place to expand my love of things Primitive. Mary extended her hand and gave me her heart.
Mary has the most AMAZING website.....you need to go there and make sure to bookmark it!
The vegetables she sews and creates have got to be some of the most realistic I have ever seen.
Her pumpkins have haunted my dreams enough that I am now expecting some patterns to arrive in the mail any time now from her. I just had to try my hand at her creations!
I think a display of these veggies on a prim countertop in wooden bowls would be so striking.
Mary has a variety of prim goodies to offer you on her website. Make sure to check out all her categories. Email her when you are ready to bring some of AntyM's garden home!
I have spent the afternoon adding and changing things on my website.
So many flowers were sprouting up in a friends garden that I took a bunch of my latest dolls over and did a photo shoot! LOL
I hope you all enjoy the pictures as much as I did getting them done. The mosquitos tried to eat us alive but we braved them for the pictures! LOL
If the weather continues to be good.....more dolls will be heading over to the garden for pictures soon. Within the next week, fingers crossed...should be another 7-10 dolls!
~ Special pumpkin gals
~Primitive dolls in festive holiday colors
ALL NEW to the Thru the Attic Door!
Make sure to stop by and check them out!
Monday, June 27, 2005
Megan's website is the site you want to go and look thru when you want something "primitive" but haven't quite crossed the line to grungy.
She has a doll line out called "ShabbyRaggedyChics" and they are amazing!
Such detail in their faces which are done in muted colors. Floral fabrics that are so wonderful and perfect for a room done in the Shabby Chic decor.
Then if you want a special something that is perfect to slip into birthday presents or Christmas stockings....you need to make sure not to miss Megan's Simmering Teas!
They come in an array of awesome scents!
You can use them in so many different ways...... throw one under your seat in the car, attach one to the lid of the laundry basket!, in a drawer or closet...lots of uses!! Some of us have even added them when we are staining our fabric for dollie making! Awesome scented fabric!
Make sure to go and check out Megan's site and tell her that Cedara sent ya!
Craft Show will be held July 13th - July 27th 2005
Once again Primmart is hosting a wonderful and fun online craft show. If you are the type to do some of your holiday shopping early....this is the craft show for you!
So many folks have signed up for booths and there is still room for more. Click the link to read the details.
I have been busy creating some fun new holiday dolls for your home. They will make their grand entrance the first day of the craft show! I am so excited about them!
Tried to get in a "cooler" mind set then this summer heat is giving me! LOL
Tried my hand at a few new things that I hope will make you smile.
If you like the look of prim dolls...... gingers......santas.....and well......I am giving away too much
Stop by and look thru my booth!
We are going to be under DOLLs and will be towards the bottom of the list!
Thru the Attic Door is going to have some creations you are just going to have to have!
There are going to be chatrooms where you can jump right in and talk to venders.
If you have any questions....just ask! You'll be able to find me in the chatroom quite often!
Hope to see you all there!
Does the smell of cinnamon buns just make you close your eyes and have your tummy grumble? If you just nodded YES then have I got a site for you to check out!
This website is now called Cinnamon Bun Creations and is so chalk full of goodies!
A friend of mine Raelene runs this site so when you place your order...make sure to tell her that Cedara sent ya! LOL
Look at some of her great goodies you could have in your home right now!
Don't these look amazing? I would have to have one of these burning all the time! LOL
Or if instead of candles....... you wanted to toss some super strong smelling cinnamon buns in with your latest bowl of prim fixens.......can you imagine anything more prim looking then these in a bowl? You get 50 of them!
Run right over to her website right now and order some of the most awesome scented goodies for your home!
Wednesday, June 15, 2005
I am no expert on the subject but I have produced 10 now and my mailing keeps growing each month. I enjoy writing so much that I am now doing this blog! LOL I also write a monthly column called "Whispers from the Past" in Primmart's Online Newsletter "Beneath the Willow Tree"
I send out my newsletter thru www.bravenet.com each month and just love their set up.
These tips and ideas will work for any newsletter set up that you use now or plan on using in the future.
These tips are in my opinion only...they aren't rules written in stone!
Work with them and see what works best for you:)
~ If you can learn to write like you talk, you'll find that people generally enjoy reading it. No one talks with perfect English. Make your newsletter a bit chatty and informal. But chatty doesn't mean airy and full of fluff. You need to say something worth saying or all you will do is turn your members away.
Now I am not talking full of bad grammer and lots of slang..... no one wants to read that!
But they don't want to read Shakespeare either! LOL
~ How often should you publish a newsletter?
I don't send out more then one newsletter a month if at all possible.
Get out a calendar and mark the day you plan to send your newsletter out on, and then block out a couple of days prior to the deadline to prepare each newsletter. As you learn how to produce a newsletter,this time frame will be less.
Alot of folks seem to pick the first of each month to send theirs out. If the folks who have signed up for your newsletter have signed up for quite a few others as well....this could make for a very full mailbox for them. Some folks may opt OFF your list if it gets too crazy for them.
Think about sending it on say the 5th of every month....... the middle of the month...... the end of the month even.
Plan what articles are to be written several months ahead if possible. You can start collecting ideas and data long before your fingers start touching the keyboard. I keep a journal next to the computer....I jot ideas down. Comments that I have heard. A website that I want to tell folks about. Listen to what feedback you get back and you will know what direction to go with your newsletter.
~How to get folks to sign up
Offer them something that is going to make them want to recieve your newsletter every time.
You want them excited when its time for it to be arriving in their mailbox.
I have offered "first glimpses" of new dolls I have created.
Run contests! Draw names from your mailing list for prizes.
Offer something FREE! Everyone loves getting something free. Not the same old thing everyone else seems to offer. Be unique! Stand out. If you can do that....folks will talk about you and your newsletter popularity will spread like fire wild!
I will be offering more tips for newsletters in the near future. Can't give you everything now! LOL
I want you coming back too!
~~Can your website be spread too thin? ~~
In my opinion...the answer is NO! LOL
I think the more places that you can get your website seen and viewed from...the better.
If you are only on one spot.....only those folks are really seeing you every day. The odd person may stumble across your website from doing a search. But if you are in a few different spots, a few more different folks are seeing and talking about your site! That has to be a good thing!
This is the Online Marketplace that I host my website thru. I have one of Shelly's Ezshoppes and its the best thing I could have for myself right now! I just love it:)
The community at Primmart is amazing. I really do consider so many of the ladies there just like extended family. So many good times have been had there.
If you love PRIMITIVES and want to be part of a great group of people...stop by and join the community!(Tell them Cedara sent ya!)
In the last year I have been doing lots of research and found a few more places to join and become a part of. Each of these other places I have been welcomed with open arms.
So many new faces are now good friends in my life.
I have learned and grown so much in my crafting from them all.
Some you may already know......some may be new to you.
I have them listed in my links section on the side but wanted to give a bit more information about them here.
This is a smaller group of artists but their hearts are HUGE!
A friend told me about their site and forum. I went their one evening and posted....they all welcomed me with open arms.
These ladies have some amazing talent!!!!!!
You have just got to check them out! You can find them at the above link and some of their own websites as well. These gals do amazing auctions thru Ebay as well!
Look for FOA listed items....its made by these wonderful ladies!
I was told by someone about this place and when I checked it out....it was HUGE!
You join for free and get the basic membership..... you can upgrade to different levels for different prices but so far i haven't felt the need to upgrade.
Once you become a member then you can search thru the many forums.
The following are the primitive forums that I belong to there:
~A Passion For Primitives
This forum was created in an attempt to spread the word about Primitive crafts and Decorating in Australia.They welcome international primitive lovers too of course! Take a look around and if you like what you see then make sure you introduce yourself so they can give you a proper welcome. You will love all the great prim things these gals can teach you!
~ CrowSoup.com Crafters Market Forum
This forum goes with Crow Soup of course
~Folk Art Square Community
They are a collective array of crafters and prim lovers. You DO NOT need to be a crafty person to join in this forum board. If you have a passion for primitives and handmade goods, you have come to the right place.
You will find just about everything in this forum. The talented ladies do it all!
~ Primitive & Rustic Crafts&Decorating
This forum is a place where they share ideas on decorating your homes with primitives & sharin ideas on making primitive crafts.
~ Sisters at Heart
A forum to share ideas with and have a good time.
Another great forum full of lovers of Prims!
Some wonderful friendly folk who have some websites full of great prim goodies for your home!
Stop by and see the fun!
I hope you all enjoy going to these places if you haven't already found them and joined.
Get your website name out there for folks to find you and make some wonderful new friendships along the way!
Can't wait too see you all there!
Always looking for another place to get my business name out in the world for folks to find me.
Was chatting away with my friend Kel and she told me about this spot she has opened up.
Knew right away when I checked it out that I had to share with everyone.
(Make sure to tell her that Cedara sent ya if you join up!!!!!)
As a little bit of everything for everybody!
Go take a look and join the fun!
No I am not making so many dolls that I am now having dreams about them! LOL
This is a great website from England that my friend Kel runs. She draws the graphics using her mouse and comes up with the most awesome designs.
She has everything from full website sets; banners; avatars to just about anything your heart can think up.
Lots of folks know about her graphics but not many know she also can print things for your business needs. She has the most AMAZING BUSINESS CARDS!
I have spent quite a bit of time just clicking thru them and they are so very prim looking. I just love them!
She mails them all for less then $4 no matter where in the world you live!
If you order 50 or more business cards....she tosses in an extra 50 cards for free!
How great is that!?
If you are looking for something unique.....check Kel's site!
Saturday, June 11, 2005
My grandmother made this doll house for me when I was about 7 years old; give or take a year or so.I have not always had it displayed. For many moons it was stored up in my parents attic.I had fallen in love with the look of primitives and had the space so it was brought out again. I had forgotten the joy it could bring to me.
When you lift the lid and peer inside......parts of my grandmothers home peek up at you from inside.
The rug on the floors matched were pieces from my grandmothers own rugs. The paper on the walls were from her rooms as well.The room done all in blue was exactly like the bedroom I slept in when I visited her. Even the kitchen floor was her linoleum!
I played for many hours with this doll house. My nieces have now played with it as well. The memories for us all will continue and it will be passed on for future generations.
I had alway thought I wanted to change things in the house and make it very prim looking in style inside. But with the selling of my grandmothers home a few years ago, this now has taken on even more special memories that I don't ever what to change.
The weekend has turned out amazing! The sun is out and so are the tables in everyones yards with goodies! I love this time of year. Everyone has spent the winter months tripping over and moving stuff around their home. Now with the warmer weather, they have gathered those items up and placed them for sale for all of us!
I don't drive but am lucky that Eric loves to go to yard sales! We are going to drive around this weekend and see what unique treasures we can stumble aross.
I am hoping to find a few items that I can create a special prim doll with!
Maybe something for her to hold. Maybe a vinyage piece of fabric to make her dress from.
Wish me luck! I'll share pictures of anything great!
Get yourself a set and play around with it. Once you needle felt hair...you will be doing hair that way alot!
The doll head has already been stuffed and is nice and firm. I take a piece of the sheeps wool and place it across the seam of the dolls head. Holding the felting needle very carefully....they are very sharp and HURT like the dickens when you jab your finger! I start jabbing the needle thru the wool right into the dolls head.
( if you are in the least bit of a foul mood...OmGoodness this is a great way to release your frustration!lol)
You continue jabbing the needle thru the wool until you can see it is attaching. What is happening is the needle has tiny barbs cut into it. Those barbs are "grabbing" the sheeps wool as they go down inside the doll. The barbs are then "catching" the stuffing inside and messing them together. The more you jab the needle down into the stuffing....more of the wool is being attached.
You can see here the tiny pieces that have attached.
You can add as many pieces of the wool as you wish your doll to have. Just keep jabbing with the needle where ever you wish the wool to attach.
Before you know it....your doll has a full head of sheeps wool for hair!
Doesn't she look so very prim!
For any of you that have not found out about and fallen in love with NEEDLE FELTING...this post is for you!
I raise my hand high to you all and say I AM ADDICTED!
Used to spend many a long hour hand sewing all my doll hair. I did it that way as it was the only way I knew how at the time. Worked. Liked the out come for the stuff I was using at the time.
Then I stumbled across sheeps wool. Really nice and curly. Was going to look so very prim on my dolls. I tried sewing it the the head and near drove myself nuts! LOL
Then I saw a mention of "felting needles" and how it was used to attach wool to a doll.
I was so lucky to have an aunt who happened to have a set that she had been given and never used. (Thank you so much KIM! xoxo)
She gave them to me and I have never looked back!
This is what they look like!
I am thrilled beyond words to say that I have a few of Lori's baskets! I love them!
She does such a great job on the weaving and the small details. You will love them set about your home with primitive fixens stashed in them...or a set of great rag balls.....or even just to toss spare change into.
Here are a few examples of her creations....wow eh!
and then Lori tells me that I was the inspiration behind this next example. I introduced her to needlefelting and she created this one. ( I own one of these now and LOVE IT!)
So run right over to her website! You will be sure to find something for your prim home!
I am blessed to call Lori a friend and be able to look around my home and see her creations.
Monday, June 06, 2005
Terri of PUMPKIN SEED PRIMITIVES has some of the best crow items around! I love checking her stuff out. Someday I am going to own myself the crow rubber stamp! It keeps cawing at me! LOL She also has a variety of other prim items that are super.
CAw CaW CAw
Go check her out!
She is a fellow maritimer like myself so that right there makes her super special!
Some of us know her as CINDER and she runs the website http://www.wellblessmystitches.com/
She has been creating some of the most awesome stitched pillows and ornaments!
I am very happy to say that she has been a huge help to my own site. I hope to have a line of stitchery patterns coming out soon and Cinder was sweet enough to stitch them for me.
I can doodle things up quickly on paper but if I was to stitch them...well....you'd be 80 before you saw one! LOL
She also just opened an Epattern site..... make sure go scoot over there and check out her stuff as well. http://www.wellblessmystitchespatterns.com/
If you love the look of stitcheries but are alot like me and can't sit still long enough to do them....Cinder is the gal to check out!
Thanks for all your help Cinder and I will be sending you more patterns soon! heehee
Oh I can just tell that this is going to be a great week to run down the driveway to the mailbox!
I should be getting my latest copy of Twig's primitive magazine Mercantile Gathering. So many folks have been talking about it! I just know I am going to read it from cover to cover soon as it arrives!
I have a couple different folks sending me parcels.....either something I ordered from them or a few folks have said they sent me "surprises". Ohhhhhh I can hardly stand it! I am going to drive the others here at home nuts till everything arrives:)
Sunday, June 05, 2005
There is a contest that you can play!
and you can read all about the contest at the following
Contest starts: June 6th at 12pm EST
Contest ends: June 20th
I am proud to say that I am offering one of the prizes which will of course be one of my dolls:)
Have fun finding all of those ants!!!!
You are looking for this ant graphic on all the websites by the way!
Blackberry BBQ Sauce
1/2 C. blackberry preserves
1 1/2 C. ketchup
1/8 C. packed brown sugar
1/8 t. cayenne pepper
1/4 t. mustard powder
2 T. red wine vinegar
YOU WILL FALL IN LOVE WITH PRIMITIVES!
The longer I am sewing and creating primitives....its like something crazy takes over your brain. Although with my brain...didn't know it could get any more wacky in there! It started out with a nice simple dunk in a pot of tea for most of my items.
Now a good strong pot of coffee..... a few cinnamon sticks floating around....the odd piece of roughed up nutmeg.....and a good dash of vanilla....and my fabric is soaking for hours! Then the fence gets covered with it all so it can dry in the sun and get grungy in the heat!
I love how each piece of fabric never looks like another that I have done. Everyone does their fabric different. You sort of fool around until you find something that clicks. My hands always seem to have a slight tinch of coffee to them...which right now saves on the fake tan. Note to self...must splash some coffee mixture on my legs! LOL
Rule to remember.... Its Primitive...not Perfect!
The Christmas season was rolling close and I had been tossing the idea around of maybe opening a website to sell my creations. I had only been sewing for less then a year and was nervous beyond words.
I woke one morning to my DREAM coming true before my eyes!
I had been given my shop and customs graphics by some "elves"!!!!!
Have never been so excited and scared of anything in my life!
The best way I think there is of getting your feet wet with the notion of a website!
I celebrated my one year anniversary of being online in March 2005 and am pushing forward stronger then ever!
www.thrutheatticdoor.com always has something exciting happening with it and this BLOG is the latest!
Not usually one to "follow the usual path" I find myself a bit shocked that I am following this latest trend! LOL It really does help me stay a bit more focused and I am really liking how flexiable I am getting.
Pilates and yoga!
I have just been treated to a few new dvds of them and I can't wait to spread the yoga mat out. I like the sense of "calm" that takes over my brain. Its usually flitting from one thought to another.The voices in my head stop yelling! LOL
If your voices are taking over..... give Pilates and yoga a try!
My favorite place for finding them is www.millan.net
I had fallen in love with her graphics she used on Ecards on another site I go to. Did some background and found she had her own website:)
She offers MANY free and then she creates new ones in a special section that I pay a fee to use. For the smiles it gives me and those I share them with...its worth it!
Please....go and enjoy her artwork! They will make you smile!
Been doing so much research on blogging that I got sidetracked and forgot to write!
Since jumping into blogging with both feet and my eyes closed....thought I'd better do some background stuff. Have been busy making notes and think this will be fun.
So I will be doing my best from now on.... TO WRITE at least EVERY OTHER DAY!
Hope to find you back checking the blog often!
Remember to bookmark me and make it that much easier to find each day:)
Wednesday, June 01, 2005
I thought I'd share the full article here..... no limit on my space! heehee
" Some days it was idle curiosity that drew me up those attic stairs.I'd linger for hours With shadows dancing across wooden slated walls,I'd gaze upon my reflection in an old mirror that hung in one area.It wasif I belonged to the ghosts in the attic.
Closing my eyes.... listening for a soft whisper .... I remember finding an old wooden crate.
I pulled the crate out and carefully shook it.Finding spiders was not my favorite part of any of my discoveries.I looked down into the crate as hints of Whispers from my Past flowed out from within.
A blanket was inside....the binding long gone from the love of a child.
I placed it aside to ask Gram if she knew who it belonged to. I would find out later, it was my grandfathers baby blanket.In the bottom of the crate was a photo album. I pulled the album out gingerly, flipping open the old cover to the first page.
It was as if Memories had waited quietly for the turning of those pages again. Images floated up at me of faces I did not know and yet my own face stole up to me from in those pictures.I could see my own reflection in her eyes.
My great-grandmother Eva Wright French Somers.
I had been told many times that I had her eyes. My cheeks were round like hers.My personality on the other hand; was that of my grandmother who's attic I was sifting thru; but that is a whole other story!
I was sitting in the dusty attic with photographs that were over 100 years old.
Photographs had been a luxury. Blessed that Eva's family was wealthy enough to have so many taken. I flipped the worn pages carefully.
Eva wearing a white lace gown that I had yet to discover. Wearing a brooch that I knew my aunt now kept in herjewelry box. Documents were also to be found in the album and tucked down in the crate.These were invisable heartstrings connecting me to my past.
Letters written to her parents while away at Cushing Academy.Newspaper articles telling the story of the death of Eva's father while trying to save an employee of his store in 1895. The marriage certificate of my great- great- grandmother from 1896 when she married for the second time. A picture of Eva with a small child over her shoulder. This child would turn out to be my grandfather.A piece of paper yellowed with age. On it, written in the smallest handwritting his weight for the first few months he was born.It was thrilling to have this connection to the past.
I drug all those old photos down from the attic.Gram told as many stories from each picture that she could recall. Names to as many faces as she could remember. We now have those stories to cherish forever.
NExt time, you open an old box or even a book, and an old photograph falls to your knees.Don't place it back into its hidden spot. Reconnect to your past so that generations that continue from now, will have a few more answersto their past.Bring the albums out for display again. Frame special pictures to hang about your home.Wrap yourself with the your own Whispers from the past.
I sat next to an old rocking chair that day. The leather seat torn many years ago and then forgotten.The next Whisper from the Past will tell the story of furniture found covered with dust in the attic. "