December 08, 2017

Handmade Christmas Ornaments

Two of my favorite people to make gifts for are my SIL and hubby's niece. They both like things that are made with love and they're always excited to open my packages. It makes me happy to make them happy. For a couple of years now, my SIL has a vase with some branches in her kitchen that she decorates according to the season. I gladly granted her requests for little fabric fish, Easter eggs, and Christmas ornaments. Each year, I try to come up with some new pieces to add to the collection. For last year's Christmas I had made glass glitter stars, fabric baubles and 3-d book page trees.

This year I sewed, respectively knitted tiny leather mittens and scarves. Just when I had finished those wintry accessories, my friend Michelle over at A Crafty Mix posted a DIY for the cutest little washboard ornaments. I commented that it would be great for the washboards to have some tiny clothes to keep them company. While I wasn't able to make some of the adorable washboards because I can't print anything at the moment, the thought of tiny clothes kept floating around in my head. I decided to sew a set of sweaters.

Old T-Shirt upcycled into Christmas sweater ornament by Vintage with Laces

I recycled a part of an old T-Shirt that I had recently sorted out. I added embroidery lining and double sided fusible interfacing between the fronts and the backs. The sweaters are 2" (5 cm) high. In the pictures the color is not accurately displayed. The sweaters are more teal colored in real life, matching my SIL's kitchen décor.


Old T-Shirt upcycled into Christmas sweater ornaments by Vintage with Laces


Small Christmas mitten ornament made out of leather scraps by Vintage with Laces

The mittens are about the same size as the sweaters. They're made out of leather scraps I received from a tailor may years ago. I thought it would be easy to stitch the mittens by machine but it wasn't because I didn't have a leather needle in my stash. I made several attempts but my machine kept skipping stitches and the thread broke numerous times. I solved the problem by removing the spool and the bobbin and just piercing the leather by machine. Hand stitching through the holes took a bit of time but was easy to do then.


Small Knitted Scarf Christmas Ornament by Vintage with Laces


It's a long time ago that I knitted something but it was quite fun to make five of these little scarves. It certainly helped that all five of them were finished so much faster than one in a regular size.😀



Have you made any ornaments this year for yourself or to give away?

The ornaments will join these parties:

Sweet Inspiration at A Crafty Mix
Saturday Sparks at Pieced Pastimes
DIY Salvaged Junk Projects at Funky Junk Interiors
The Creative Gallery at Making It in The Mountains
Show & Share at Coastal Charm
Talk of The Town at Knick of Time

October 19, 2017

Roy Al Flush - The Gambler with a Heart of Dice

Thank you very much for your kind words on our loss of Gracie, Pixie and Smokey, and the wishes for Cosmo's recovery. Thankfully, he's doing very well. He gained a lot of weight and grew quite a bit over the last three weeks. Cosmo is a very sweet boy and we're so happy that he survived.

I haven't created anything lately but I have a few new friends waiting for some months now to make their appearance here. Today you are going to meet Roy Al Flush. He's a gambler with a heart of dice. Literally. However, he does not only like dice games but he's also an avid poker player and from time to time you can find him playing a round of Dominoes or Tri-Ominos as well.

Found Object Sculpture. The Gambler Roy Al Flush by Vintage with Laces



Roy Al Flush holds a winning hand right now and is about to go all in. Who wouldn't with a royal flush? If you're not familiar with poker, this is the best hand you can get and it's not the first time he's so lucky. Now you know why everybody calls him Roy Al Flush. He is a famous player and is feared among his competition for his great tactical play and his luck.

Found Object Sculpture. The Gambler Roy Al Flush by Vintage with Laces

His head and body are made from tins that I roasted in a charcoal barbecue fire after we had finished grilling. The nose once was a foot of an alarm-clock and his mouth was a strap adjuster. For his arms I repurposed two tiny graters that came as an extra with some nutmegs. His hair is made from a piece of fine wire mesh, pinched in between the tin's bottom and lid. After the mesh was fixed, I pulled the cross wires.

Found Object Sculpture. The Gambler Roy Al Flush by Vintage with Laces



Found Object Sculpture. The Gambler Roy Al Flush by Vintage with Laces

I made his hands from vintage Christmas candle holders and buttons. The cards are from a German mini card deck and measure only 1" x 1 3/8".

You probably know the phrase "lucky at cards, unlucky in love". So far that had been true for this little gambler. He's actually quite charming and dated frequently but he never met the girl he wanted to spend the rest of his life with. It's not that he's too demanding but all the girls he got to know where too pretentious for his taste and often just interested in his money. Then he met Sewphie Zipperbutton. Yes, her sweet personality is right along his alley and she fancies him too. For his reliability, his humor, and a bit for his good looks as well. Don't you think they make a cute couple?

By the way, Sewphie was featured in the May issue of the Australian magazine "Homespun".

Found Object Sculpture Sophie Zipperbutton by Vintage with Laces featured in Homespun May 2017


Found Object Sculpture Sophie Zipperbutton by Vintage with Laces featured in Homespun May 2017




Australian Magazine Homespun May 2017


Thank you, Homespun for the lovely feature! I was very excited to see my sewing gal along with such a lovely description in print .😊

Roy Al Flush will show up for a round of poker or dice here:

A Morning Cup of Joe at The Cottage Market
Sweet Inspiration at a Crafty Mix
Talk of the Town at Knick of Time
Waste Not Wednesday at Raggedy Bits
DIY Salvaged Junk Projects at Funky Junk Interiors

September 29, 2017

Heartbroken

I feel like my heart has been ripped into pieces. Three of our four kittens died. If you missed the story about the two week old kittens that someone abandoned in front of our home on Easter, you can read about it HERE. We had planned to find new homes for all of them once they would be three months old. Very soon I knew though, that I wouldn't be able to part with Gracie or Cosmo. When the time came to let them go, there were too many kittens available and by far not enough people interested in adopting one. So we kept all four and they all had grown very close to our hearts.



The four were 5 1/2 months old and such a happy bunch. All of a sudden they lost their appetite, started vomiting and had diarrhea. Smokey and Pixie had recovered fast but Gracie was doing real bad and Cosmo only a bit better than her. Gracie spent 5 days at the vets getting infusions and injections. She fought hard and the vets thought she would make it but last Friday she lost the battle. Cosmo had not eaten for several days. Therefore, we had to force-feed him which was very stressful for him and for us. The amount we were able to feed him, was just a fraction of what he would have needed to eat. He was only fur and bones on Sunday and I had not much hope. Suddenly though, his appetite came back and he started to eat again.

At the same time Smokey and Pixie got a relapse. They had been perfectly fine for several days. They had been eating, they had been playing like crazy and we certainly hadn't expected that they would get sick again. The vets did their best but they couldn't save them. Smokey and Pixie died the next day. The vets told us that currently, there are a lot of cases of  indoor cats with the same symptoms and that several, especially younger cats didn't make it either. A problem of bottle-fed kittens is that the lack of mother's milk weaks their immune system. Our three adult indoor/outdoor cats did not get sick at all.


Gracie, you were such a sunshine with a very sweet personality. You had been pretty sick as a baby and we were so happy that you recovered. You stole our heart quickly and we knew soon that we wouldn't be able to give you away. For the last several weeks you came to me every morning while I sat on the couch with the laptop and my first cup of coffee. You coiled up on my lap for at least 30 minutes or until I had to get up. You purred the whole time and after a while you climbed up to my head and rubbed your face against mine. Then you bit my nose very gently. I always said: "I love you, too, sweetie." You had been the first to climb up the countertops, even before the boys tried to get up there. You loved playing with water. When I put a flat bowl with water and some toys on the floor, you didn't just try to angle for them with one paw. No, you just went into the bowl with all four legs and dabbled in the water. You had such a cute and funny way to jump when we played with the cat fishing rod toy. You made us smile and laugh often.



Smokey, you were a sweet and gentle boy. You were the only one with black pads. Your fur was extremely soft and smooth. Touching you felt like touching a piece of silk. You loved Izzie even though she was always very rough when she played with you. Whenever she came in, you followed her and snuggled up on her when she took a break. You were quite talkative. When I prepared food for the four of you, you were the only one telling me how hungry you were and that it was high time to serve you a meal. It was so cute. You loved lying on the stairs, looking down on the entrance way. Even though you were the boss of the kitten gang, you were the first who hid when there was a loud noise that scared you.


Pixie, you were such a lovable girl. You were the smallest of the litter. When we found you, we weren't sure you would make it but you were strong. I often called you Pixel because you were such a tiny thing. Your clumsiness made us laugh often. You were a fidgety cuddler. When you came to one of our laps, you never lay there quietly, but moved around, following our hands and rubbing your head against them. Whenever one of us openend the drawer where we store the cat treats, you always were the first up on the cupboard to receive a little snack. You surprised me a few times, when you jumped from the armrest of the sofa or from a table directly onto my back. That was a bit painful but very cute. When I stood in the kitchen, you liked to sit with your rear on my feet. While your siblings became a bit picky about their food, you ate everything I served.

We loved all three of you very much and we miss you. We are so sad that we're not able to experience you as adult cats. You enriched our lives and brought us a lot of joy. You made us laugh and smile every day. Farewell, my sweeties!


We are happy that we still have our sweet Cosmo. He has a serious expression but he's a very charming and lovable boy. Poor Cosmo misses his siblings. He searched for them and called for them several times. He eats a lot now and has gained back some weight. His gut flora has still to improve though. After Smokey's and Pixie's relapse we're of course worried it could happen to Cosmo as well. My stomach feels like it's filled with big stones. I lost 10 pounds within the last 10 days. Losing one furry family member is hard, losing three at the same time is horrible.I hope all your furry babies are doing well.

August 25, 2017

Upcycled Tea Bag Fall Leaves

This morning I could feel that fall is around the corner. The night had been cool and the morning air was crisp. My naked feet got cold after walking and standing on the tile floor for some minutes. Cold feet never felt so good. The summer had been extremely hot with temperatures up to 113°F/45°C, and sometimes humid. I had really tried to take pleasure in my two least favorite months July and August but I was just happy when another day was over. It will still get pretty warm for at least 2 weeks but the worst for this summer is over, yeah!!!

I'm going to celebrate fall with upcycled tea bag leaves which I had made some months ago. For most of my life I hadn't been much of a tea drinker but last fall I started to drink more tea. Mostly black tea but also green tea and fruit teas. The used tea bags were saved because I knew I could do something with them.

Upcycled Sewing Project: Tea Bag Fall Leaves by Vintage with Laces

I dried the tea bags in a bowl together with some rusty parts. The gray areas and spots you see on some of the leaves were caused by the rust reacting with the tannin contained in black and green tea.


Upcycled Sewing Project: Tea Bag Fall Leaves by Vintage with Laces

My bases for the leaves were crumbled pieces of brown paper bags from bakeries. I used double-sided fusible web to adhere tea bags to both sides. The leaf veins were free-motion embroidered.


Upcycled Sewing Project: Tea Bag Fall Leaves by Vintage with Laces

Upcycled Sewing Project: Tea Bag Fall Leaves by Vintage with Laces

Upcycled Sewing Project: Tea Bag Fall Leaves by Vintage with Laces

I like how the leaves look on that rusty piece of metal. They would as well look great hanging on a branch though.

Have you decorated for fall already?

The wind will blow these leaves over to the following great parties:
Sweet Inspiration at  A Crafty Mix
Saturday Sparks at Pieced Pastimes
Sonntagsblatt at Raumseele
Talk of The Town at Knick of Time
Waste Not Wednesday at Raggedy Bits
A New Life at Rostrose
A Morning Cup of Joe at The Cottage Market

July 13, 2017

Our Dryer Caught Fire and a Driftwood Vignette

Our dryer had already been repaired several times over the last 5 years, when it had a malfunction again some weeks ago. I was still able to use it but the sensor didn't work anymore, hence the dryer wouldn't stop automatically when the clothes were dry. I had to set an alarm on my phone to remind me to turn it off manually. That worked well ... until I forgot to set the alarm last Thursday. The dryer overheated and started burning. It was a chain of lucky circumstances that we detected the fire in the bathroom just in time and my hubby was able to extinguish it with a garden hose. There was an awful lot of smoke and the bathroom was a black mess from floor to ceiling. Due to a lack of storing space in the house, there weren't only the typical bathroom items in that room but also shelves with books, seasonal decorations etc. Amazingly, neither my wicker laundry baskets nor the books caught fire. The fire was hot enough though to melt not only the dryer's door but also some plastic containers and bowls that weren't even close by. The smell in the bathroom and the hall was disgusting. In the meanwhile everything is cleaned and painted. It will probably take some weeks though until the smoke smell will be gone entirely. Some things couldn't be saved but we were very lucky. It could have ended so much worse.

When we take a walk on the beach, my eyes always scan the sand for driftwood, sea glass, rusty items, pretty sea shells and whatever else might catch my attention. I used some pieces of my driftwood collection for a little summer vignette.




Coastal Decor: Driftwood pieces embellished with stamped fabric scraps

I like the look of plain driftwood but this time I wanted to add a soft touch. I stamped some nautical motives onto cream colored fabric scraps and glued them to the wood. A simple and quick project.


Coastal Decor: Driftwood pieces embellished with stamped fabric scraps




Coastal Decor: Driftwood pieces embellished with stamped fabric scraps

We're not even half way through July and I'm already looking forward to fall. I'm just not enjoying temperatures above 82°F/28°C and we had up to 100°F/38°C over the last few weeks. The ventilators are running day and night. 7 weeks to go or more until cooler weather will bring back my energy. How is the summer in your neck of the woods?


My driftwood will be washed up at these great parties:
Sweet Inspiration at  A Crafty Mix
DIY Salvaged Junk Projects at Funky Junk Interiors
Vintage Charm at Our Hopeful Home
A New Life at Rostrose
Show & Share at Coastal Charm
Talk of The Town at Knick of Time

June 23, 2017

Denim Belt Loop Cuffs and Some Tags

I don't even remember when I last bought a piece of jewelry or hinted to my hubby that I would like to have a certain piece from one of those fancy jewelry shops. I don't care about precious metals and diamonds anymore but prefer handmade, one of a kind jewelry instead. For many years now, I've been making my own necklaces, bracelets and earrings and I also wear beautiful pieces created by artistic blogging friends.

Upcycled Jewelry: Denim Belt Loop Cuffs by Vintage with Laces

When I sort out, receive or buy an old pair of jeans for upcycling, I first cut off the belt loops and collect them in a bag. One day, when I removed the belt loops of some used jeans, I got the idea to turn them into cuffs and came up with three varying styles.

Upcycled Jewelry: Denim Belt Loop Cuffs by Vintage with Laces


Upcycled Jewelry: Denim Belt Loop Cuffs by Vintage with Laces

I tried different kinds of buttons as embellishments and finally decided to use bold metal ones with an antique silver finish.

GreenCraft Magazine Spring 2017




Upcycled Jewelry: Denim Belt Loop Cuffs by Vintage with Laces published in GreenCraft Magazine Spring 2017


Upcycled Jewelry: Denim Belt Loop Cuffs by Vintage with Laces published in GreenCraft Magazine Spring 2017

 I'm very excited that my cuffs have been published in the Spring 2017 issue of GreeCraft Magazine.


Upcycled Denim Tags by Vintage with Laces

 
Upcycled Denim Tags by Vintage with Laces in GreenCraft Magazine Spring 2017

When I sent in my submission to GreenCraft Magazine, I attached some sewn denim tags to the cuffs with my contact details inserted in the pockets on the back. The tags made it into the magazine as well which was a lovely surprise.

Currently, I don't have any denim projects in the works but I will turn to my stash of old jeans again sooner or later. It's such a sturdy and versatile material that is suitable for all kinds of creations. I just love to work with it.

The cuffs and tags will attend these great parties:
Sweet Inspiration at A Crafty Mix
DIY Salvaged Junk at Funky Junk Interiors
Saturday Sparks at Pieced Pastimes
Sonntagsblatt at Raumseele
Waste Not Wednesday at Raggedy Bits
Talk of The Town at Knick of Time
A New Life at Rostrose

June 09, 2017

My New Found Object Sculpture Is A Very Rare Birdie

It doesn’t happen often that a vulture and a peacock fall in love but it occurs from time to time. When Pea Cocktail’s vulture mom and her peacock dad met, it was love at first sight, believe it or not. It didn’t take long before they started to build a nest and after a hatching period of about two months, a little girl got out of the only egg.

Found Object Sculpture Bird by Vintage with Laces

The offspring of such a mixed relationship has features of both species. When a girl is born with a vulture head, she always has the big peacock tail feathers that among purebred peacocks only the males get. Just in case you’re wondering. 😊

Found Object Sculpture Bird by Vintage with Laces

Here you see Pea Cocktail in her natural habitat. She loves a garden with lots of wildflowers and all kinds of grasses.

Found Object Sculpture Bird by Vintage with Laces

Sometimes she runs into a turtle but they usually ignore each other.

Found Object Sculpture Bird by Vintage with Laces

The idea to make this bird started with the legs. Long time ago I had bought a metal bird and never used it for decoration. The body wasn’t well made and the colors were rather ugly. What was I thinking? Some months ago, I took it apart and only kept the legs. For the tail I used a valve feeler gauge. Isn’t that a cool thing and just perfect for a peacock tail?

Found Object Sculpture Bird by Vintage with Laces

Pea’s body is an old wooden hotel keychain and her neck is the metal part of a light bulb. When it comes to her head I have no clue. Does anyone know what kind of cone(?) that is? It must have come to me in a flower arrangement or Christmas wreath some years ago.


Found Object Sculpture Birds by Vintage with Laces

Some of you might remember Pelican Joe. He had been looking for a girlfriend for the last three years without success. When he met Pea Cocktail, he suddenly had butterflies in his tummy. He asked her out and look, he brought a bunch of flowers to their first date. Isn’t he a gentleman? I was told they had a fabulous evening hopping through the garden together and they’ll meet again soon. We might have a couple of lovebirds here. 😊

Miss Pea Cocktail will fly over to these great parties:

Sweet Inspiration at A Crafty Mix
Party Junk at Funky Junk Interiors
Vintage Charm at Our Hopeful Home
Talk of The Town at Knick of Time

May 19, 2017

Unexpected Kittens

I didn’t intend to be away from my blog for so long. The time just flew by. I tried my best to decide what kind of creations I should focus on in the future but the harder I tried, the more ideas popped into my head and wanted attention as well. The result was that I didn’t accomplish anything for months which was rather frustrating. It seems that I will just continue to work on many different kinds of projects. Limiting myself doesn’t work for me. At least not at this time. I have some junk people in the works and you’ll also get to see some summer decorations and mixed media art soon. Today I have to tell you about some cute furry babies though.

On Good Friday someone left four 10-14 days old kittens in front of our gate. I guess I’m known as the crazy cat lady in our area. Unfortunately, it’s common practice in the South and East of Europe to drown unwanted kittens or to abandon them somewhere in the wilderness where they either starve to death or get killed by predators. It’s so unbelievably cruel and I’m glad that these four didn’t have to suffer such kind of fate. The first two weeks I had to bottle-feed the kittens every two to three hours day and night. In the meanwhile they drink kitten milk from a small plate and eat kitten food as well. I have to get up only once a night now.

Tricolor Kitten by Vintage with Laces


This little girl is Gracie. For some days we thought she wouldn’t make it because she threw up kitten milk and food and she lost so much weight. It seems that she has a very sensitive stomach. She’s doing pretty well with the food she gets now and she gains weight again every day.

Kitten with a ball of wool by Vintage with Laces


The second girl of the litter is Pixie. She is the smallest of the four and extra clumsy which is so cute.

Kitten by Vintage with Laces


Smokey started out with less weight than his brother but he's now the biggest of the siblings.

Kitten by Vintage with Laces


This is Cosmo. He was the first to use the litter box when he was just under three weeks old. Amazing!

Wrestling Kitten by Vintage with Laces


We do have a winner in the Greco-Roman kitten wrestling championship. The gold medal goes to Smokey and we better give it to him right now or he’ll wrestle us down as well. 😀


Kittens by Vintage with Laces


Izzie was about 5 months old when someone left her in front of our home a few days before Christmas. She was still too young to take care of herself, so of course we adopted her. We had her spayed in January. However, she feels motherly towards the kittens. She licks them and even helped with the bathroom business when they weren’t going to litter box yet. We have to take her away after a few minutes though because then she gets too rough with the kittens.

Three Kittens by Vintage with Laces


It’s so much fun watching the little fur balls play with themselves, with each other or any kind of toy. Yesterday evening I laughed tears when Cosmo shoved an empty egg carton around in circles with his nose for some minutes. It’s so cute when they chase each other around the food stool or when such little kittens arch their back before playfully attacking a sibling. We haven’t laughed as much as in the last several days for a while. We hope we’ll find good homes for the kittens but I dread the day I have to part with them. I know there will be tears involved. I remember how hard it was to let go two kittens of the litter we had 5 years ago.

The kittens will check out theses great parties:

Saturday Sparks at Pieced Pastimes
Sonntagsblatt at Raumseele
Show & Share at Coastal Charm
Morning Cup of Joe at The Cottage Market