Tuesday, August 27, 2019

A Handmade Boy’s Birthday Card

This is a card I made with no specific person in mind.  I thought about giving it to my son as he has a birthday coming up on Thursday, but I think it's too young for him, he'll be 28.   I made the card because I had scraps left over from another card I just finished.  Rather than just toss the scraps in the garbage, I threw together another card.  So, since I don't have a recipient in mind, it will just sit in my stash until I need it.   It's always nice to have extra cards on-hand when the needs arise.

For this card I used all old supplies.  The paper is from an old Cosmo Cricket stack and the image is retired Stampin' Up!   "Kids at Play".

To make the card, I just glued the kite designer paper to a white card base and added another coordinating piece of dp to the side.  I then stamped the kite and little boy onto separate card stock, colored them in with Copic markers, then fussy cut them out.  They were then popped up on dimensionals onto the card.

A sentiment was stamped right onto the designer paper.

What about you?  Do you often pre-make cards for future occasions?  I'd love to hear from you!

Linking Up with these Fabulous Blogs HERE!

Have a Great Day!  Amy

Friday, August 23, 2019

Stitch Fix #31 Review

Editorial Note:  This is pre-scheduled post.  I am in Illinois for the week visiting my children and grand babies.  They do not have Internet service so I will be unable to post or respond to comments till I get home.

Today is the day I review my pieces from my August box from Stitch Fix.  I will let you know what I kept and what I sent back and why, as well as the results of my Instagram Poll!

41 Hawthorn "Malri Pin Tuck Detail Blouse"

Status:  Kept!

When I saw this top in my Fix I never in a million years would have thought I would kept it.  Because I am a big busted gal, I usually avoid anything with ruffles or ties around my chest.  But when I tried it on, I fell in love with the color, the subtle print, and I felt it filled a void in my closet.  I didn't have anything like this top already, and it went with so many things I already owned.  And I didn't feel the ruffle made my chest look bigger at all.

The top looked great styled with jeans, dressed up with a skirt, and dressed down with shorts.  It is very versatile and I can see getting a lot of use out of it in the fall and winter by pairing it with jackets and cardigans.

Instagram readers loved it as well as it came in at #1 with 88% saying to "Keep It" and only 12% said to "Return It".

Margaret M Lea Printed Short

Status:  Returned

I loved the Margaret M shorts I received in my June Fix so much that I requested another pair in a different print.  However, I ended up having to cancel my July Fix due to my grand baby's arrival and when my August Fix arrived I really didn't think I needed shorts anymore.  Plus, I really did not like the print on the pair.  The tiny, dark floral reminded me of country curtains from the eighties.  So back they went.  Instagram readers were not fond of these shorts either.  They came in at #4 with 63% saying to "Keep" them and 37% to "Return".  They looked great though with the top kept didn't they?  The top also looks fabulous with the shorts I kept from my last Fix.  The blue is a perfect match.

Kut from the Kloth "Paulina Drawstring Pant"

Status:  Returned

I asked my stylist for some "Easy, breezy lightweight pants for summer" and she sent me these.  I thought they were cute, but they wrinkled easy.  They were also very expensive ($68.00) which I thought was ridiculously high for a pair of thin, drawstring pants.  I could easily find these somewhere else for less than $20.00.  I don't mind spending that kind of money on pants if they are extremely high quality and well made, but like I said, these are just drawstring pants.  I could probably even make these myself.  So, I sent them back.  My Instagram readers weren't fond of these at all.  They came in dead last at #5 with only 44% saying to "Keep" the pants and 56% saying to "Return" them.

Loveappella "Tori Knit Maxi Dress"

Status:  Kept!

This was another item in my box I thought I would never keep.  I already own so many maxi dresses, and I already have a black floral one (see it in this post).   But this one is made of a very comfortable, lightweight knit whereas my other black maxi dress is not.  Hubby also fell in love with this dress,  I'm sure the deep neckline had something to do with that! 🤣  I ultimately decided to keep it because it was so comfortable and I knew I would wear it a lot more than my other one.  Perhaps it's time to sell my other dress on Poshmark!  I also think it will make a great fall transitional dress.  Readers loved it too, it came in at #2 with 82% saying to "Keep" and only 18% to "Return".

Pale Sky "Levana Crochet Detail Top"

Status:  Returned

It never ceases to amaze me when I open a box and see what I got what I think I'll keep and what I actually end up keeping.  Most of the time, it's the exact opposite of what I think.  This was a top, I thought for sure I would keep.  I usually love white tops, and tend to keep any white top I get.  They are just so versatile and I always love the clean, fresh feel white tops give off.  The crochet detail in this top was truly beautiful, but in the end, I returned it because I did not find it very flattering on me. I carry all my extra weight in the top half of my body, and although I prefer my tops to be looser to camouflage that, this one was a little too loose.  The bagginess of the top made me look even heavier, so back it went.  Hubby didn't like the top either.  It came in at #3 on Instagram with 75% of readers saying to "Keep" it and 25% said to "Return" it.

In summary I received two tops, one dress, one pair of shorts, and one pair of pants.  I kept two items, the dress and the blue top.

If you've never tried Stitch Fix before, use my Referral Code to receive $25.00 off your first box!

Have A Great Day!  Amy

Linking Up with these Fabulous Blogs HERE!

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

A Handmade Masculine Card

Editoral Note:  This is a pre-scheduled post.  I am in Illinois for the week visiting my children and grand babies.  They do not have Internet service so I will be unable to post or respond to comments till I return.

Summer is months of birthdays and anniversaries for me so I am always busy in my craft room making cards.  All my children and grand babies were born during the summer, plus almost everyone gets married in the summer, so I have lots of cards to make!

My son--in-law's birthday is in August and this was the card I made for him.

To make this card I used an old, retired background stamp from Stampin' Up!.  I stamped just a portion of it on an angle in brown ink.  The stop watch is an old Inkadinkado stamp.  I stamped it on separate card stock, colored it in, cut it out, then popped it up on dimensionals.

The sentiment is also an old SU! stamp.  I stamped it on a piece of separate white card stock, and cut it out using an MFT die.  Then I sewed it on to the main white panel using my sewing machine.  The entire card base was then glued to a brown card base.

Have A Great Day!  Amy

Linking Up with these Fabulous Blogs HERE!

Monday, August 19, 2019

Drawstring Pants For Hot Summer Days

Editorial Note:  This is a pre-scheduled post.  I am in Illinois for the week visiting my children and grand babies.  They do not have Internet service so I will not be able to post or respond to your comments until I return home.

Lightweight pants are a great alternative for hot summer days if you don't want to wear shorts.  My regular readers may be aware that my legs have been looking very scarred and bruised from a cooking accident last Thanksgiving and also from working in the garden.  Although I still wear shorts on occasion, my scars have been leaving a bit self conscious so I've been leaning on lightweight pants and maxi dresses as options.  

Because of my scars, I asked my Stitch Fix stylist to send me some "Easy Breezy lightweight pants" and she sent me this pair from Kut from the Kloth.

The pants are a thin linen material.  They are so thin you can see right through them if you hold them up to light (definitely got to wear the right underwear when wearing these pants!).  The thinness is nice for hot weather, but the material does wrinkle easily.

The pants have both a drawstring and elastic waist line, plus pockets.

I paired my Stitch Fix pants with this cute graphic tee from JCPenney.  I will be leaving for a hiking adventure in Utah in a few weeks, so I purchased some new active wear and lightweight loose tanks for the trips.  I absolutely fell in love with the print and color of this tank, but of course the only size they had left was a large.  I promised myself I would never buy clothing that was not my size again because I always end up regretting it, yet, I did it again.  Ugh!  Why do I that?  I should have just waited and ordered my correct size on-line.  Anyway, the top is very large and loose on me, which makes me look bigger than I am, but, I think it will be very comfortable to wear with my active wear shorts and leggings.  The longer length will cover up my backside nicely.

I chose my strappy flat sandals from DSW (old) to go with the casual, boho vibe of this look.

I added a multi-strand beaded bracelet that has a lot of the colors from the outfit in the beads, and I carried a straw bag...both great boho pieces that compliment the outfit.

I could not find these exact par of pants on line, but I love these olive green Kut from the Kloth pair HERE (on sale).  JCPenney also has this great pair HERE!.  The tank is available HERE, but I see the elephant graphic I'm wearing is sold out already (other designs still available).  So maybe I wouldn't have been able to buy it on-line anyway.  Everyone wants this print I guess!

Have A Great Day!  Amy

Linking Up with these Fabulous Blogs HERE!

Friday, August 16, 2019

How To Wear A Dark Floral Maxi Dress

Can a woman have too many maxi dresses?  ha ha, I'm beginning to wonder now that I'm the proud owner of six maxis!  I just love the comfort and ease of knit maxi dresses.  I like looking like I'm dressed up but I'm so comfortable I could sleep in what I'm wearing.  This is a maxi I received in my August box from Stitch Fix.  It's made of a soft thin knit material so it's so comfortable!  

I think the dark floral will transition me from summer to fall nicely.  Here I am styling the dress with black sandals, but I can see it with booties and a jean jacket when the weather gets colder.

This dress is by Loveappella and is called "Torri Knit Maxi Dress".  I couldn't find this exact dress on-line other than Poshmark, but here is a great alternative on Amazon.    Speaking of Poshmark, I've recently discovered that I can find a lot of Stitch Fix pieces on Poshmark.  I always regretted sending this black floral top back, but I found it on Poshmark for only $22;  half the cost Stitch Fix was asking.  So I scooped it up!  I've also seen this dress on Poshmark, but it was sold out or not in my size.  I've learned that before buying from Stitch Fix, to check Poshmark first because I might find it cheaper!

Like most Stitch Fix pieces, the dress has several charming little details.  I like that this dress not only has sleeves (most of my maxis are halters) but it's a trending flutter sleeve.  There is also a cute crochet detail on the shoulder.

The dress has a wrap style which is flattering on all figure types, but it does reveal more cleavage.  If  I wore this dress to church, I would definitely wear a cami underneath it.

For accessories I chose black and white jewelry and I carried a blush pink clutch also from Stitch Fix (Sole Society, similar bag HERE).

Have A Great Day!  Amy

Linking Up with these Fabulous Blogs HERE!

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

A Handmade Floral Birthday Card For My Daughter

My daughter turned 31 last month.  Can you believe it?  I can't believe I have a daughter in her thirties.  She asked for houseplants in cute pots for her birthday and this is the card I made for her to go with her gift.

This is an old MFT sketch.  Designer paper was cut on on angle to create an envelope look.  I stamped the flowers on separate card stock and cut them out with scissors.  Some of the flowers were popped up on dimensionals and some were just glued directly to the card.

The leaves and sentiment banner were cut with MFT dies.

All the stamps are super old and no longer available, but you could easily re-create this card with just about any floral stamp set and sentiment.

Have a Great Day!  Amy

Linking Up with these Fabulous Blogs HERE!

Monday, August 12, 2019

How To Subtly Mix Patterns

I have to admit, I'm not a fan of pattern mixing in fashion.  However, if it's done very subtly, then I like it.  Now you may not be able to see it at first glance in some of these far away shots, but I am pattern mixing....in a subtle way.  😊  My shorts obviously have a printed floral pattern, and my top has a very subtle pattern on it as well.  This is my favorite way of mixing patterns;  wearing only one piece with an obvious or strong print combined with another piece with a more subtle print.  But I also like to do this with accessories or shoes too, not just tops or bottoms.

Both my pieces are from Stitch Fix.  The top is by 41 Hawthorn and the shorts are by Margaret M.  If you buy from Stitch Fix you can request them from your stylist, otherwise I've linked some Amazon alternatives at the end of this post.

I picked accessories that pulled out other colors from my clothes.  The beige bag pulled out the beige in the shorts and the black sandals pulled out the black from the shorts.

This is such a cool and comfy outfit for summer, but very polished as well.  

Here is a close up of the ever-so-subtle print on this top.  And isn't this neckline just the cutest?

Of course I had to take advantage of the gorgeous sunflowers growing in my garden for this photo shoot. 😍  The yellow blooms contrast so beautifully with the blue top.  

So what do you think?  Would you wear this outfit?  Do you like to pattern mix?  I'd love to hear from you!

Here are some other cute printed tops from Amazon:  Lark & Ro Sleeveless Bubble Blouse with Ruffle Trim, and Blencot Women's Button Down V-Neck.  And I love these flower print shorts from Floerns, these cute elastic waist ones by MBJ, and these adorable drawstring ones by Keliqq.  Aren't those elephants in the pattern so cute?

Have A Great Day!  Amy

Linking Up with these Fabulous Blogs HERE!

Sunday, August 11, 2019

The Late July and Early August Garden

I can't believe we're almost half way through August already, can you?  😢  Summer is always over so fast.  These pictures were taken during the last weeks of July and early August.  Almost everything but the mums and sedums have bloomed now, and soon the garden will have a last hurrah and  begin to wind down.  

In my last garden post, the Asiatic lilies and annuals were the stars of the garden.  Now, the day lilies and the Black Eyed Susans are stealing the show.

I love this light pink day lily with the contrast of the purple coneflower in the background.

I do not plant any sunflowers myself, but whenever one grows on it's own from bird seed carried and dropped by the birds, I usually leave it be.  Even if it seems to be sprouting in the worst of all places, I leave it alone.  And I'm always glad I did.  Here a tall sunflower grew right in the front of my garden.  Usually I don't want tall plants in the front...they always look better in the center or the back of the garden.  But this sunny flower is in full view of my kitchen sink window and it cheers me up every time I do the dishes.

My Annabelle Hydrangea blooms got so big they drooped and fell over.  I love how they surrounded the angel statue.

A container garden and coleus in my shade garden.  The begonia in the pot is two years old.  I brought the pot inside my sun room for the winter.  Did you know you can over winter a lot of annuals inside your home?  It's a great cost saver if you have a large garden like I do.  I couldn't possibly buy all new annuals every year.  Geraniums make the best houseplants for sunny windows.  I always bring those inside in the fall.

This is a larger sunflower the birds planted in a more appropriate spot...the center of my garden.  Good for them! :)

The Black Eyed Susans in the sunniest part of my yard are in full bloom right now.  I still have some plants in other parts of the yard that are not blooming yet.

My fall hydrangea bush is just starting to open up.

A bee enjoying a purple Liatris.

This is a tall shade plant called Flipendula.  I have it growing along my fence line where not much else wants to grow but weeds.

Hibiscus is another plant I over winter in my sun room.  I have two of these bushes, this pink one and a peach one (not pictured in this post).

A gorgeous purple day lily.

I love contrast in the garden.  The beautiful red day lilies in the foreground look amazing up against the Black Eyed Susans and Purple Coneflower in the background.

In case you didn't know, Black Eyed Susans reseed like crazy.  And I don't care!  It's a beautiful plant that blooms for almost a month.  The birds, especially the yellow finches, go crazy for its seed.  And, it's a low growing plant, so it doesn't drive me crazy like the taller perennials like Phlox or Goldenrod due.  Plus, their roots are very shallow, so it's easy to pull out if a plant grows where you don't want it.  It also grows fairly well in shade, which is rare!  It's hard to find flowering perennials that grow well in shade.

A purple day lily with an insect inside.

This is a light purple bee balm.  In previous garden posts, I've already shown you a red bee balm and a deep purple bee balm that grows in my garden.  This variety is one of the last of the bee balms to bloom.

This day lily is called "September...something"  I can't remember the full name.  It's one of the last day lilies to bloom, so September is part of its name.  It has a golden yellow/orangey color:  very reminiscent of traditional fall colors.

This gorgeous day lily I have blooming right next to my pond.

The Star Gazer Asiatic Lily is probably every ones favorite Asiatic lily.  The blooms are so big and beautiful and the scent this lily throws off in the garden is incredible.  You can smell it the second you step out of the house!

The deep purple bee balm I mentioned above is still in bloom looking amazing with the lighter purple cone flower.  That is tall phlox in the foreground which is just starting to open up.

And the next few pictures show other angles of the the same flowers shown above.

Have A Great Day!  Amy

Linking Up with these Fabulous Blogs HERE!