Monday, November 22, 2010

Coming Soon and Something New!


Maybe it's because Christmas is in the air . . . I feel like one of Santa's elves! {giggle}

I've been busy creating more items!

Coming soon to my shop!

{whither I wander set of 5 silk butterfly hair clips}




And . . . now you'll be able to buy butterflies individually! Your choice of one . . . they make great stocking-stuffers! :)


{through fields of buttercups set of 3 clips}

I'll add a few more butterflies this next week also! :)

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And something new I've been working on . . . little sprites!

{snow sprite: juggling snowballs}

I think she turned out adorable! She's all handsewn, with vintage shell buttons, bits of fabric, and a little vintage millinery flower! She's standing on a little glittery snowflake. And I think the most fun part . . . she's juggling snowballs!!! About 5 inches tall. 

Not sure how well she'll fit into my shop, but she might enjoy it there! 

Will be working on a few more of these little figures in the next few evenings.

Plus, I've got "seaglass" and "soft pink" glittered bottlebrush christmas trees on the assembly line right now! :)

Well, back to the workbench! {humming "I'll Be Home for Christmas"}

Take care, lovelies!

Fondly, Kate

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

A Twitter Giveaway

Hello, Lovelies! 

HOW CAN A MONTH GO BY SO FAST?!?!?!

It has been FOREVER since I have blogged {blushing}!

Will catch you up later on.

Right now, I'm hosting a giveaway on Twitter, open to all my twitter followers!

*   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *


The 862nd RT {retweet} will WIN a set of these blue silk butterfly hair clips!!!





You can follow me on twitter at: http://www.twitter.com/katesCottage2

Have a LOVELY, LOVELY day!

Fondly, Kate

Friday, October 1, 2010

It's a Boy!!!

Meet my sweet little brand-new nephew!!!


Jeremy Alan
Born September 29th, 2010
9lbs. 3 oz.


My 8-year-old holding a crying baby with daddy looking on 


Jeremy and Uncle John


Proud papa! My brother holding his first child!

Yesterday after school, we packed up and headed over to visit my brother, sister-in-law, and new baby Jeremy at the hospital. I couldn't help but get teary-eyed, holding this sweet little cherub! So beautiful and perfect! And my brother . . . a father!!! Brought back fond, fond memories of my four little guys' births!!! 

Baby looks just like my brother's baby photos, except for the mouth, which is DEFINITELY mama's! :) Mama is well and recovering after an emergency c-section, and baby is OF COURSE so beautiful and thankfully healthy!

I still believe in miracles!

Fondly, Kate

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

A Blog Party!!!

Hello, Lovelies!
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If you're new to my blog . . . welcome! 

If I already know you . . . hello there, friend!

I was contacted recently by Shannon from Tennessee Crafter on Etsy informing me of her upcoming Blog Party and wondered if I would like to donate an item to be given away.

What a cute blog she has, and of course I said yes!

So, when you get a minute, pop on over to her blog to see all the WONDERFUL items she'll be giving away over the next week and a half!

Click here to visit "Below the Plateau"

I'll be giving away a set of these cheery yellow silk butterfly hair clips!


If you've found me through Shannon's blog, here are some things you should know about me:

1. I'm a blissfully married mother of four sons living in the rural midwest, USA. We have 3/4 acre, two outdoor cats, 1 fish and an army of water-boatsmen {which my 12 and 8 year olds have happily collected in an outdoor basin} .

2. I brake for junk! . . . really! I love old things and will stop suddenly if I see an abandoned piece of furniture or old door that I can turn into something beautiful! 

3. I'm a Jane Austen Fan and have been known to spend way too much time sewing up time period clothing in preparation for local Regency Exhibition Balls! {blushing}

4. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE traditional Irish music. They've got a song for every mood . . . as long as your mood is either completely, delusionally happy, or utterly and soulfully mournful! Deanta, Altan and Teada are some of my favorites!

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Well, enough about me! Hope you'll take the chance to enter Shannon's WONDERFUL giveaways!

Wishing you a wonderfully enchanting day!

Fondly, Kate

Friday, September 10, 2010

Friday's Fancies {In the Night Sky}



In the northern hemisphere, the days are getting shorter . . . 

Autumn is coming . . .

And the moon is lighting the night sky.

Enjoy these moon-themed items found browsing Etsy:

{clockwise from top left}

Moonage Daydream Fine Art Print from Catherine Nunnally Photography
Silver Moon Clock from Cyber Moon
Looking Through Glass Fine Art Print from Little Shop of Photos


See the full treasury on Etsy here:


Happy Night Sky Watching!

Fondly, Kate

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Quite the Perfect Day!

Okay, so I have no photos to go along with this story, as I left my camera at home yesterday, which is fine, as it is always easier to enjoy life in reality, rather than behind a camera lens. But hope to paint a LOVELY picture for you of one of the best days I've had this summer.
*
After a crazy-busy week filled with our children's {and my husband's} school open houses, two nights of dinners with friends, purchasing school supplies, baking up peach pies, a bit of Etsy work, and the usual laundry, dishes, mopping, etc., my husband and I both committed to take the day off completely on Friday and spend it together with our kids.
*
We awoke to a cool, crisp, and sunshiney day! Perfect, PERFECT Autumn weather. After breakfast, my husband packed a yummy picnic lunch while I filled out my fair form, indicating which items I'd be displaying at this year's County Fair . . . jams, photographs, miniature flower displays, and a silk butterfly hair fascinator.

We then traveled to a neighboring town, looking for a place to eat our lunch. We happened upon a sweet little park, with a wide span of open grass dotted with hundred-year-old trees, {which, to my children's satisfaction, also contained a huge wooden play structure}. We spread out our quilt, and enjoyed our lunch, talking and laughing about the cute little pudgy squirrels burying their acorns, about the ants trying to take over our picnic, and about upcoming Halloween costumes.

After lunch, the kids ran around playing tag in the grass, and then romping through the play structure as my husband and I talked about the politics of public school, enjoying apple cider and picking apples in the Fall, and the mixed emotions of watching our children grow up.

We left the park to visit the local pet shop, where our 12-year-old bought a fish bowl, we sat fascinated, listening to the little finches chirping away, and my husband bought 2 {very agressive} cichlids {fish}, which he named Chuck and Norris. :)

We drove back to my husband's classroom and deposited said fish into the classroom tank, and cleaned out the hamster cage.

Then we headed over to Glei's, the local apple orchard and farmer's market to purchase a peck of peaches, a dozen ears of corn, and other assorted locally-grown veggies, and to meander through their greenhouses.

Upon our return to home, my husband fired up the grill and we enjoyed grilled corn-on-the-cob, venison sausages, pasta salad, grilled zucchini, and peaches with cream.

After dishes, we all settled in underneath blankets to watch a family movie and eat Amish kettle-cooked popcorn and yogurt covered pretzels.

We fell asleep to the sound of returning college students laughing and talking, excited for the upcoming school year.

This may not sound like much of a day, but it was perfect to me. All work was abandoned for the day, and we made time to laugh and play together. I think the best days are the ones where we look back and can't think of a single thing we accomplished. My husband and I did nothing to bring money in yesterday, we neglected our yard, and we didn't solve world hunger. We DID, however, build family bonds, laugh and play together, and taught our children to ALWAYS make time to enjoy life. In my book, I'd say we accomplished a LOT yesterday! :)

Here's to enjoying every day! Carpe diem!

Fondly, Kate

Monday, August 30, 2010

Positivity Team Blog Giveaway!!!

Hello, all!
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As an administrator for the Positivity Team on Etsy, I just wanted to let you followers know that we'll be having a GIVEAWAY this week on our Team blog! One new item every day will be given away!!!

Head over HERE to see the great Etsy Shops featured and enter the giveaway!!!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Friday's Fancies {back to school}


I woke up to a cool, crisp morning today, which can only mean one thing . . . it's back-to-school time! My mind's eye is conjuring images of small children running out to school busses, their red lights flashing. My ears are longing to hear the laughter of children on the playground. My nose is already smelling the warm, pungent earth that Autumn brings. And my tastebuds are anxiously awaiting the first cider of the season, as my kids gather around me after a long day at school!

Okay, so I'm really trying to deny that school starts for us in 11 days! I'm just not ready to send my kids back to school, to be away from me for 7 hours each day. But . . . if I have to send them back, I might as well do it in style!

Here's a sampling of the WONDERFUL back-to-school items to be found this season on Etsy:

{clockwise from top left}

Send your kids back to school in style with this beautifully-made Roll Up Pencil Case in Autumn Stripes from See Anna Sew . Such a great organizational tool! And with room to hold 23 pencils, your kids will never be able to say that their homework didn't get completed for lack of a pencil.
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Any child {or adult, for that matter} would look forward to lunchtime {or a lunch break} with this Eco-Friendly Insulated Lunch Bag by Farfalla Gialla. Just pack full of fresh fruits and veggies and a homemade sandwich, and you're ready to send your kids on their way with a nutritious lunch.
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Wondering what to pack all those nutritious food in, while avoiding those plastic sandwich bags??? Here's the solution! This Reusable Sandwich Eco Bag from Zummi is the perfect little eco-friendly bag. Just pop in your sandwich, fruit, or snacks and press closed. Also great for storing toys, makeup, and crafts!
*
An apple for the teacher? This adorable little Hand-Crocheted Apple Cozy from Unravel Me  will keep your apple warm and bruise-free! Practical, and yet, still SO SWEET! I'd love to buy a set of six, wrap them around my apples, and set them on the shelf in my front entryway!
*

Happy beginning of Autumn {for those of you in the Northern Hemisphere}! May you enjoy the sights, smells, and tastes of this beautiful time of year!
*

Fondly, Kate


Thursday, August 19, 2010

New items coming soon to my shop!


Okay, so I've been playing with my camera a bit lately. 

And I went to the local vintage book shop the other day after dropping off a package at the post office. I found some really great vintage postcards {why don't we write like that anymore?}
*
So, here's what I've come up with:
{a preview of some of the new items coming to my shop!}

My Millinery Line!
 
{one fine day~three yellow daffodil bobby pins}

{through the garden gate~three pink rose bobby pins}

{kaela~pink rosebud and silver-plated earrings}

{lilah~bright pink and silver millinery flower earrings}
*

Vintage-Inspired Halloween Pouches!

{magpies and potions~set of four witch muslin pouches} 

{anika~one sweet little witch muslin pouch} 

  Check out my shop in the next couple weeks as I will be listing lots more earrings and muslin pouches along with several new sets of silk butterfly hair clips!


Fondly, Kate

Friday, August 13, 2010

Friday's Fancies {Sea Treasures}

Smell the salty sea air and enjoy these gorgeous sea treasure-inspired items from talented Etsians!

{clockwise from top left}

Any mermaid would be proud to wear this flowy green Mermaid Wrap Skirt by thaitee {which comes in many different and equally-as-lovely colors}

Washed up on the shore with a bit of shiny treasure, these Sea Urchin White Earrings from Star of the East have a wonderful seaside feel

The gorgeous, soft feel of the muted rocks on this Shoreline with Round Rocks fine art print from Rocky Top Studio sends my soul to a peaceful daydream

X marks the spot on this Path Pirate Ring from Ardent 1, a reminder to dig deep for the treasure you come across along your path in life


Fondly, Kate

Friday, July 23, 2010

Friday's Fancies {Take Me to the Carnival}


This time of year always makes me eager for the Carnival. That colorful, jubilant event filled with cotton candy on a stick & candied apples, exotic animals, thrilling rides, and of course, the big top.

Hope you enjoy these lovely carnival-inspired items from talented Etsians!
  

{clockwise from top left}

The vibrant colors and whimsical feel of this "Fly High" photo print from Integrity Studio {bucks county frames} conjure imaginations of whipping freely through the breeze. Please check out all of Carl Christensen's Carnival and Fair photos, which are all equally as lovely!
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Every Carnival needs a clown, and what could be sweeter than this tiny cherub-faced one? This vintage-inspired Clown Costume from Dahlhart Lane reminds me of years-gone-by. Plus, there's no chance this will leave you with scary images of painted-faced jesters! 
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What's a carnival without Fresh Roasted Peanuts??? Please don't try to eat these ones though! They're made of soap! Perfect for washing all the cotton candy off your fingers after the Carnival! Fresh Roasted Peanut Soap from LoveLee Soaps
*
You must have tickets to ride the ferris wheel! I just Love that Ruth Mikos has created this Jubilee Ride Ticket wooden bracelet with a vintage Ticket image! If I wore this to the Carnival, do you think they'd let me ride for free?


Mmmmmm . . .  now I'm hungry for elephant ears!

Happy Carnival season!

Fondly, Kate

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Taking Photos

I've been trying lately to improve my product photos.

Yesterday I was outside with my two youngest boys and brought out some of my silk butterfly hair clips to photograph.

I just LOVE the way this photo turned out!


Don't they almost look real?!

I think I'll be heading outside again today to take more photos like this one!

Have a LOVELY Tuesday!

Fondly, Kate

Friday, July 16, 2010

Friday's Fancies {My Enchanted Garden}

Had I an enchanted garden, I would love it to be filled with these beautiful and utterly whimsical items from talented Etsians!

{clockwise from top left}

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Icelandic Poppy hair fascinator from The Faerie Market
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Wishing you all a lovely, enchanted day!

Fondly, Kate


Tuesday, July 13, 2010

GREEN!

Have a look at this absolutely gorgeous, stunning ring from Kiss Kiss Vintage! I stumbled upon it as she and I were in this lovely treasury together!


The stone reminds me of a lovely patch of moss! So earthy and organic! Would love to see this little treasure in my jewelry box, wouldn't you!?!

Simply stunning!

Fondly, Kate

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Front Page of Etsy

Good Thursday Morning, Lovelies!
*
I awoke to 5 convos this morning on my Etsy shop! And found that a set of my nest shoe clips made the Front Page of Etsy last evening.

Here's the screenshot of the absolutely GORGEOUS Treasury by AlicesLookingGlass!


Have a LOVELY day!

Fondly, Kate

Friday, July 2, 2010

Friday's Fancies {Patriotism Through and Through}


Happy Friday, Lovelies!

Time for another Friday's Fancies!

With our Independence Day just around the corner, my picks this week are a tribute to our great nation, the USA!
I just love this quote:
"America is Great because it is Good, when it ceases to be Good, it will cease to be Great!"

Although I am aware that this nation has it's fair share of bad, I cannot help but see all the Good!

Have a look at all these beautiful Patriotic lovelies from fellow Etsians!

{clockwise from top left}

I'd love to hang this White Star Ornament from Cottage in the Sun on my front door in honor of the 4th of July!

Wouldn't you love to be seen wearing this Vintage Metal Star Brooch from White Serenade on Independence Day?!

This Starfish Garland from The Shabby Chic Cottage is beachy and patriotic at the same time! Perfect as everyday decor!

There's nothing like these classic Born in the USA Wood Letters from Second Hand News to display your patriotism for this great country!

Wishing you all a VERY Festive, Fun and Patriotic Independence Day!!!


Fondly, Kate

Monday, June 28, 2010

The Fruits of Summer


We try to live the "Cottage" way of life, which means to me that we live simply, be as self-sufficient as we can, use what we have {and be grateful for it}, work hard, play some too, and ALWAYS enjoy life! 

Strawberry-picking {which led to jam-making} embodies all of these concepts.


{Picking strawberries at the field. My 7-year old shows his treasures so far}

Last Thursday, my friend, Jennifer and I decided to take our families strawberry-picking at a local farm. After stopping by another friend's house, she {Tracy} decided to bring her two boys along too! The more, the merrier! 

It was a perfect, sunshiny day with big puffy clouds and a nice breeze.

Armed with 4 quart buckets, all nine kids had a great time picking and eating those jewel-like berries, and wandering through the fields and tree line! Even my husband, who is a bit allergic to strawberry plants, had a great time picking and talking with Jennifer's husband.


{a partial bucket of home-grown strawberries . . . don't they just look like rubies?!}

Our family picked 28 quarts of strawberries alone. The price was right at $1.50 a quart, and there's nothing like locally-grown, sun-ripened strawberries! 

After a quick trip to the grocery store to stock up on lids, sugar, and pectin, we were off to Jennifer's house to can up some strawberry jam, while the kids and husbands jumped in the lake for a relaxing swim.


{stirring the pot}

In the years past, I've done quite a bit of drying and freezing of fruits and veggies, but shamefully, it has been years since I've canned anything! And this was the first time I've made cooked jam. I've always made strawberry freezer jam, so this was a new experience.

I was actually really surprised at how quick and easy the process was!

Hull and crush the berries, measure and pour them into the pot, add the pectin, let it boil, add the sugar, boil a bit more, pour into clean jars, process them in a water bath for 20 mins, and . . . voila . . .


14 pints of beautiful, gleaming, homemade strawberry jam!

Breakfast on Friday consisted of whole wheat toast with homemade jam . . . there's actually nothing like it! Even though we cooked the jam, it still tasted like fresh strawberries!

I spent the rest of the day on Friday hulling the remaining berries, making 14 pints of triple-berry jam with raspberries and blackberries, freezing some, and making the strawberry portion of strawberry shortcake with the rest. Is there ever such a thing as TOO MANY strawberries?

We worked some, played some, used what nature gave us, had a LOVELY day, and now I've got half a year's worth of jam in my pantry made only from pectin, sugar, and homegrown strawberries.  

Here's to the simple pleasures in life!

Fondly, Kate