17 August 2011

Halifax Craft Show - This Weekend

Hello!!  I've been pretty much AWOL all summer.  I've been busy though, and I have some new designs.

You can catch a sneak peek of some of my new items at the Art vs Craft Show this weekend at the Halifax Forum in Halifax.  We will be in the Maritime Room between 11am and 6pm.  Some of my favorite etsy sellers will also be in attendance.

Hope to see you there.  Keep an eye on my etsy shop too over the next few weeks as new items start to appear.  Lots of new autumn colours on the way.

5 July 2011


I have always loved the look of cameos.  The Victorian charm of the silhouetted ladies has always spoken to me.  I have been back and forth for some time now on adding a cameo line to my shop, and finally, once I discovered the wide range of designs and colours available in cameos, I could no longer resist.

This cameo anchor piece is the first one to go live in my etsy shop .

This more traditional style cameo will be appearing in my shop soon.

And many other styles will follow shortly thereafter.  Keep looking.

23 June 2011

A Message from the TransCanada Etsy Team

Come show our team how much you love us.

We are honoured to be part of the Handmadeology's Handmade Top 10 Team Challenge.  You can show your support for the team by clicking the vote graphic below and casting your votes for our member's items.

 Thank you so much from all our members. 

27 May 2011

TransCanada Etsy Team Stories

Meet TawnyBee, a fellow member of the TransCanada Etsy Team.  She along with other team members will be sharing there stories on our team blog over the next couple months.  Follow along here: TCET Blog.

Check the team blog often as more members share their stories.

14 April 2011

Celebrating Moms

The TransCanada Etsy Team is celebrating MOMS!!

Follow the team blog over the coming week to learn more about some of the team's members as they share some inspirational tales of motherhood. 

Like our previous promotions, we also have a fabulous prize draw.  This time, win a $50 TCET gift certificate to be spent in one or more of the participating team shops.  Buying from any of these participating shops will earn you ballots for the prize.

At String Me Along, you can also enjoy a 20% discount, helping you earn even more ballots.  Simply enter coupon code MOM20 at checkout.

Find this necklace and other goodies in my etsy shop.  

1 April 2011

Salad Days Ahead

My thumb is slowly and surely turning a fresh shade of green. I am really excited about the progress that I have made to date in building a little sprouting garden.

At this moment, I have six small pots of tomato seedlings; a small window box of basil sproutings; two large window boxes containing chives, cilantro, parsley and thyme stems; three pots of arugula, and; the first peeping pops of green are coming up on the mesclun mixes and lettuce that I planted earlier this week.

The outer shells of my bean and pea seeds have started to pull back, and I expect to see a grand unfurling in the next couple days. I am anxiously awaiting a hint of life from my Swiss chard, cucumbers and morning glory seeds.

Now, if only the weather would grant me some sort of consistency. Today, April Fool's Day no less, my house is being buffeted by strong, cold winds, and the threat of rain/snow/ice hovers menacingly within the pewter skies.

Here are a couple quick snaps of the mesclun mix that I planted late on Monday afternoon. I admire the pluck of these little darlings. To snap up out of those tiny seeds so quickly, and to turn a shining leaf to the window on a day like this admirable.

Update: I better start preparing a vinagrette. Here are my sprouts, one day later.

28 March 2011

Adding Softness

Well, the process of turning a house into a home continues here. Our living room has been virtually empty since we moved in three months ago. The squashy couch needed to live in the basement alongside the TV. They are a match made in heaven, and separating them just would not do. We have a new (to us) couch arriving today. I'm very excited to have it in place. And, so that it would not be lonely as it adjusted to its new life here, last week we bought two simple chairs to go with it.

Once these spring days of ours warm just a touch more, the room will painted something other than its uninspiring taupe. I think I have settled on a pale blue-grey. But my mind is a changeable one, so it won't really be decided until after the paint hits the walls, and even that is not a sure thing.

I do love creamy white furniture as it leaves the doors wide open for accessorizing. There's a word that makes me giddy with expectation. So, I am at the moment happily wiling away hours searching for scrumptious pillows and cushions to add some softness to the room.

Here are some of the pillows that I have so far spied on etsy and that I have fallen a little in love with:

Silk-screened pillow by joom.

A combination of hand-printed linen and lush velvet from MayaWilsonSource. I love the small hint of fuchsia - a subtle, playful pop.

A pillow print of an original painting by heiditheartist. What a gorgeous way to combine a fine art piece into a room.

Monograms are so stately. This pillow is a perfect shade of blue and has just enough hints of yellow to lend a slight nod to the colour palette of the adjoining room. This pillow is from the shop of Sistudiodesign.

22 March 2011


When I set out to attract birds to my yard, I had hoped for this:

I had never anticipated that I would be this successful:

A pheasant of all things! He wasn't really interested in the seed that I had set out. I don't know where he came from. He scooted across the front yard and disappeared somewhere around the side. I had hoped for a better photo, and maybe in the future I will be more quick capturing the shot.

20 March 2011

Welcome Spring

It is the first day of spring and what a glorious day it has been. The new season was ushered in with a full, super-moon. The skies were clear and the view of the moon was spectacular. It was exceedingly bright.

This afternoon, with 5 degrees and warm sunshine to draw me outside, I took a poke around the gardens to see if there was any chance that there may be any sign of new life. I was absolutely ecstatic when I discovered all the springtime delights awaiting me. I honestly have no idea what the various shoots and sprouts will eventually become, but I am eagerly awaiting the surprise.

Around the front of the house, I even found this little surprise. The flower portion looks like a common dandelion, yet the stalk of it looks decidedly more stocky. I imagine it is a common weed, but after months of staring out at a blanket of white, it is still a welcome sight.

Even the trees seem eager to shake of the dormancy of winter. Buds are plentiful and plump, and it will hopefully not be long before the first nature's first gold arrives.

16 March 2011

Inspiration and a Charity

I don't need to share with anyone the shocking news that the country of Japan is in crisis - rocked by an 8.9 magnitude earthquake; a significant portion flattened by an ensuing tsunami; gripped by the fear of nuclear meltdowns, and; threatened by a vlocano all at once.

As the world sat in shock, listening and watching as the bad news continued, charitable organizations sprung into action.

Today, I was inspired by a young co-worker. She is in her very early twenties, and has a huge dream to visit Japan. Since the start of the year, she has been saving her pennies and taking any extra available shift at work so she could make her dream a reality this year. Today, setting her dream aside, she instead donated all her funds to the Canadian Red Cross Society for their Japan Relief Fund.

Hers was such a generous offering, and her gesture inspired me.

Until April 15th, I am donating 50% from the purchase price of all items sold in my etsy shop to the Canadian Red Cross - Japan Earthquake Relief Fund.

If you do not wish to make a purchase but would like to support the cause, please follow the link below.

9 March 2011

Avian Success

I did it!! I had an actual visitor to my feeder today. I didn't scare the little one away, and he popped back and forth between the feeder and the tree for several little morsels.

I don't know why this is so, but I feel as though this is one of my life's greatest victories.

A Handmade Life

Apart from creating my String Me Along jewellery line, I love to find other ways to indulge my creative whimsies. I've always loved spending time messing about in my kitchen, and since I have moved into my new home, my creative juices are extending to planting and decorating.

Here are some of my recent projects.

In true messing about style, I have become addicted to making marshmallows. Such a surprisingly easy confection to make, and a truly delicious end result. My co-workers have grown to love me since I always bring the bulk of the batch in for them to snack on. Last week, I did a minor experiment, expanding my marshmallow repertoire from dreamy vanilla bean, to heavenly toasted coconut. I followed the basic marshmallow recipe from marthastewart.com. Before adding them to the dish to firm, I liberally sprinkled the bottom of the pan with toasted coconut along with the powdered sugar. I did the same with the top of the marshmallows, and pressed in the coconut. It added a lovely flavour, and a fantastic texture.

I have never been blessed with a green thumb, but I am striving to improve my lot in life. Today, I am happy to say that my luck does seem to be changing. Last week, I sowed these little pots of arugula sprouts. I can't wait to wake up every morning to see how much they have grown. I tend to them religiously. I should be careful that I don't baby them too much. Sometimes, I do think if I was more aloof, I would be more successful.

And, finally, with spring upon us and Easter just 40 days away, I thought it might be nice to have a spring themed decoration for my front door. I also decided that I want to create something purely from scratch. No store bought elements. So, I decided that rather than adding to my green bin, I am going to use some of my compostables as decoration. I have started collecting my egg shells. After cleaning them thoroughly, I have been using my discarded coffee grounds to sprinkle over to spot-dye some brown speckles onto the eggs. Once I receive the desired effect I will tea stain them with our discarded tea leaves.

Since I have a wooded area at my disposal, I plan to seek out some small branches to twist into a wreath form, and from there I will drape it with moss which grows liberally around the edges of my yard.
Assuming that I am happy with the end result, I will share photos in the near future. In the meantime, I have some baking experiments in mind that should provide me with a good harvest of egg shells.

8 March 2011

Red Velvet Cake

It was my Mom's birthday celebration this past weekend. I made a red velvet cake as a transport vessel for the many, many candles. It was delicious, and I am sad that it is now gone. That does not mean, though, that we can't celebrate the rich, sumptuous nature of red velvet.

Red velvet rickrack ribbon. Isn't this fabulous? Find it in the shop of ixhop.

As if vintage dresses aren't perfect enough, here is one in gorgeous red velvet. This is in the shop of mintagestyle.

A classic tomato shaped pin cushion in pluffy red velvet lives in the shop of jilverbick.

Mmmmmmmmmmmmm.... Creme fraiche whipped soap in red velvet flavour/scent. Find this in Savor.
And finally, a red velvet cake ball. Doesn't this look like a perfect little treat. This delectable little bite can be found in goincrazyinME.

Hope you enjoyed this delicious tour.

21 February 2011

Dr Doolittle

Well, a brief update. It seems that the post I did a short time ago, intended to prove that I was sincere in wishing that the birds would come to visit has paid off.

Just a day after that, we were treated to a particularly warm, sunshiny day. I took a moment to gaze out my studio window and there in a tree toward the front of my yard, I saw some movement. And then things got quite active. There was a small cluster of teeny birds, frantically hopping and flitting about from branch to branch. I immediately refreshed the bowl of seed on my front porch and hoped to lure them closer. They weren't eager to come closer, but they didn't take off in full fright mode either. Encouraging. One swooped past my window and I was able to see that it was a teeny goldfinch. My favorite!!

Felted goldfinches by FeltForest.
Not long after as I walked out the back of the house, I had another treat. A woodpecker was industriously banging his head against a tree. I wasn't able to get a great look at him, but I suspect we shall meet again.

Then, a few days ago, I think I came very close to having a visitor to my suet feeder on the back deck. Trouble was, I came marching out the back door at the very same moment carrying a palm tree that was terribly in need of re-potting. Poor chickadee received such a fright from the wandering tree that he made a very hasty retreat.

Handcarved chickadee by FlyingJcreations.

The same day, I went out to investigate some tracks around the edge of the yard. They appeared to be rabbit tracks. It was hard to verify as the snow had melted and then crusted over through the day. But, fresh tracks in a skiff of new fresh snow yesterday confirmed it.

Surprise Party Rabbit by alfalfalovesme.

Finally this morning, a sudden movement caught my eye outside my kitchen window. It was a squirrel, frantically racing to and fro and skittering across the icy snow. He was very cute, and though I suspect in time he might become a bit of a menace, I was pleased to see him this morning.

Squirrel fascinator by amalie.

After the two months of absolute solitude, these fresh signs of life are so welcome. Clearly, the winter slumber is coming to an end and spring is nigh. What a glorious feeling.

18 February 2011

Green Thumbs and Fun Stuff

This year I am extra excited about the arrival of spring. Lurking all around my new home are little rocky gardens. Sleeping beneath the layer of crusty snow are plants and flowers waiting to wake up, stretch out their roots, extend their stems, unfurl their leaves and lift their petalled faces toward the sun. If the garden markers are accurate, some of my favorite flowers are to make an appearance. I can't claim to have a green thumb, but I am very keen to give it a go this year.

So, I have been browsing. I need inspiration. I need to know what goodies it might take to make me an expert gardener. Here's what I have found.

Naturally, the first thing I need is to look stylish, er, I mean, I need a way to carry my tools about while remaining hands free. This super-pretty gardener's apron is just the trick. I found this in the shop of SewMerry.

Now, with belt in place, and pockets at the ready, I found some delightful gardening implements. I like the look of this vintage trowel and hand fork. Because of their age and obvious use, I might be able to trick someone into believe that gardening is old hat for me. Only I would know how green I truly am. These were found in the vintage shop, GardenandWood.

I do in fact intend to try growing some little items from seed. I love the taste of a warm, sun-warmed tomato so they will be my first experiment. And, I also love the idea of walking out to the deck, snipping off a few sprigs of fresh herbs and tossing them into whatever I'm cooking. I found these wonderful herb seed packets beautifully presented in an accordian book in the shop, Ficurinia.

And what happens when I plant the seeds and they start to grow. Will I recognize them, or will I accidentally weed them out? And will I remember what went where? These garden markers from figandfern will help ease some of my garden angst.

Come on, spring. I can't wait too much longer.

16 February 2011

Oh, so sorry. This is going to be about me again. Please don't get bored and think, "Gosh, all she talks aboutlately is herself". Honestly, I swear I will gush about others again soon.

Here's the thing though, I just made some pretty, new things and I am really excited about them. I just thought I would share them with you quickly.

Silvery flowered teardrops. The three flowers on the long part of the drop are solid and static. The three in the curve swing jauntily, and have pretty pearl centres.

Gorgeous hoops with twisting vines and little flower pods made of pearls.

Wonderful ovals with teeny silvered flowers. Once again, these flowers have the teeniest pearl centres. Pretty!

Thanks for looking.

15 February 2011


Since we moved into our new home in December, I have been trying to lure all the tiny winter birds out of hiding so that they could bring a little woodland cheer to me each day. So far I have had no luck. No wonder, really. Last time I looked my suet block had a crust of snow edging the top, and a foot long icicle dangling below. While I pride myself on being the hostess with the mostess, it seems in this instance I have encountered an epic fail.

So, I am going to cheer myself here with some wonderful little flighted fellows that I have discovered on etsy.

This fabric bird sculpture has the exact correct amount of whimsy. I love the layering on the wings, and the dainty wire feet. Find this and others in the shop of abigailbrown.

I have fallen head over heels with these cast iron drawer pulls. I will be on the lookout for the perfect antique cabinet to make over with these lovelies. They can be found at careyleigh007.

I know that I will not lure any hummingbirds here at the moment, but I hope to encourage them to visit come summer. In the meantime, I found this lampwork hummy in the shop of GlassRoger.

Here's a bird that we certainly do not have a shortage of here. This cunning raven has a beak full of treasure. Created by twooden.

Well, I must fly. *snicker*. Have a lovely day.

12 February 2011

Flowers, Flowers Everywhere

Aplogizing in advance. I'm not usually so "Look at ME!!", but I have a few more things that I want to share.

There has been a profusion of new flowers appearing in my shop. I shared yesterday the new leather flower bracelet. I will hint that you should keep your eyes peeled for variations in this design. And here, today, is another charming design using the same leather flowers. This time they have been paired with a selection of the lucite flower cabochons to make sweet bobby pins. They kinda make me smile.

The cabochons have been arriving in sweet new shapes and very pretty springtime colours. If you will, I would like to share a few more with you.

These flowers are a new favorite of mine. They look like a ballerina's swirling tutu, and are the perfect pointe toe pastel shades as well.

Beautiful faded roses, like those that you would find, dried, in a hidden chest, long-forgotten in an estate's attic. Attached here, to a beautiful filigree cuff bracelet, but soon to find their way into other new styles.

The original styles of flowers are also being used in some new and exciting ways.

Here I have mated some fabulous hued pinky-red flowers with a matte silver, mod-style vine.

There are plenty more styles to come. Most of the items above are already listed in my etsy shop. Just click the photo to find the way.