Wednesday, October 26, 2016

making a wedding

This past summer our daughter was married and, since someone asked me to share more about the wedding,
and, since some of you might have an interest in some of the details
as well,
I am sharing a bit about it here today.

All the beautiful photographs were taken by Lydia Maybee Photography.

Welcome sign hand-lettered and painted by the bride.
It was decided early on that this would be a very hands-on affair, as in the bride had a lot of ideas for decorating, etc. that we could make and do ourselves.
The setting was a beautiful old barn that is now a venue for weddings and receptions.  

Pom pom garlands were made with lots of help from the bridesmaids, friends, and family on both sides.  A good tutorial can be found here.

They made a lovely back-drop for the wedding ceremony.

The loft railing was decorated with a bunting I sewed using fabric scraps...

The bride and her attendants made all the bouquets and boutonnieres as well.
Flowers were sourced locally and many were ordered from Blooms By The Box.
I really loved watching all the girls as they carefully put together their bouquets the day before.

Some old sap buckets were painted, filled with roses and baby's breath, and placed at the end of the rows of chairs...

Of course this special Golden was part of the big day, bow-tie and all.

My large supply of canning jars came in handy for the table arrangements,
lace-wrapped and filled with flowers...

The father-of-the-bride cut log slices, which the bride numbered and glued together for the tables.

The Cake

Although I lost no small amount of sleep worrying about making this wedding cake, I am happy to say that I DID IT!!  
{Right after assembling the layers and receiving some much appreciated help with the decorating, I breathed a huge sigh of relief. Then I found out that, in my haste to get said cake layers to the venue, I had forgotten my bag packed with my dress and shoes to change into.  As guests were arriving, I was frantically driving home to change my clothes...}
At the bride's request, the bottom tier was chocolate and the top two tiers were vanilla--for the vanilla layers I used the Basic 3-Layer Yellow Cake recipe from Simple Bites; the chocolate cake recipe is from Alice Water's The Art of Simple Food.  Both these recipes are delicious, and I appreciated that they were simple to put together.  All the layers were filled with homemade chocolate ganache and raspberry filling.  Because the cake was to be under a tent on a sunny, 80-some-degrees day, I chose this Crusting No-Melt Vanilla Buttercream.  It uses a combination of butter and shortening--I never use shortening--but when I found some non-hydrogenated, organic all vegetable shortening at the store, I decided to give it a try.  I ended up very happy with this recipe, which held up perfectly.  

The world-traveling couple fittingly chose a globe for their guests to sign.

Succulent favors also served as table assignments for the guests.  I was able to order these on Etsy from SucculentPartyFavors.  Shipped all the way from California to the east coast, they arrived intact!  We wrapped them with kraft paper, tied with twine, and added flags that had each guest's name and table number typed on using my vintage typewriter.

The bride made a CARDS banner and used a decorated, vintage wicker hamper to hold wedding cards on the gift table...

I am so thankful to have been a small part of making their wedding day special.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016


It's been a difficult summer to start a yard.  We are in the midst of a drought, having barely received any rain for a couple months.  The sprinklers run almost daily, and we have a mixture of weeds and grass--a definite improvement over bare sandy soil.  I have started digging beds across the front of the house so we can get started on some landscaping.  So far I have a couple hydrangeas which I found on sale.  Achieving the gardens we had at our old house seems a long way off right now, but I am excited to get going.

The vegetable garden has been planted, but most everything is doing poorly.  The soil we bought to fill the beds would seem to be the culprit, so I am fertilizing with some organic fertilizer, and come fall, I will amend the soil with compost and plant a cover crop.  I am really missing my old garden right about now.  Here is my current plant list:  tomatoes, onions, lettuce, green beans, broccoli, cucumbers, squash, zucchini, eggplant, peppers, strawberries, raspberries, and rhubarb.

The bee house hanging out back at the edge of the woods.
The queen anne's lace is all in bloom--one of my favorite wildflowers:

Also seen on our daily walks:

There is a small wooded area at the back of our land where some ferns are growing.  I am hoping to make this a little woodland garden...

The blackberries have begun to ripen, so I am happy to have something to harvest...

Thank you for following along ~ I hope you are enjoying Summer!


Wednesday, May 11, 2016

in the new workroom

We have been in this new house just over three months now--we have accomplished a lot, but there is still so much more to be done.  We still need to finish the kitchen {the soapstone sink and counters should be installed soon!}, I need to finish painting the kitchen cabinets, all the trim in the house needs to be installed and painted, and the powder room needs its sink installed.  Meanwhile something needs to be done with the yard, and I am so hoping to get the frames in place for our raised beds which moved with us--I cannot wait to get gardening again!  Last week we planted out 30 trees and 30 shrubs around the property.  They are very small, but I am hoping they will grow quickly.
My workroom is finally organized, for the most part.  I could barely walk through due to all the stuff that would end up here as we worked on other rooms.  Now I can sew.  And, my good husband saw an ad for a vintage Singer 201 and bought it for me.  My old 101-4 was running very sluggish, and so the 201 is handling the leather sewing so much better.  I have been working on some bags for a special commission and hope later this summer to actually get some made for the shop
I am dreaming of making another quilt, whenever I can squeeze it in. I found some quilting books at the library sale and am thinking maybe I will try the flying geese pattern...


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