Sunday, September 30, 2007

I'm hearing voices....

You can often hear "artistic" or "creative" people say - "The colors (insert whatever expression you wish - music, fabric, paints,etc) just spoke to me. " Right? and I myself am guilty of saying that phrase or something similiar. Usually designs do come together easily saying, "Oh! pick me! pick me!" and as soon as I know it there I have a stack of fabrics ready to go!

I visited a local fabric store this week to pick up a few notions and well found myself meandering through the aisles and then back again. I think I covered about every inch of the store! LOL!!! No kids, no set expecations of "I've got to find this type of fabric" and time! Yes, I had some time to just be- that is before my husband would call or start texting me about how much longer I would be. *snicker* which just to clarify in case he reads this - he never did. He just watched the kids without any complaints - thank you!!!!

Ok, back on track here. The fabrics - they didn't really come all together at once but when I did the find the perfect "starting" fabric all the others starting jumping out and "speaking" to me. I knew exactly what I wanted to create! My cart was soo full with bolts of fabric people starting asking me what I going to create and giving me extra long glances as I passed by as if to scope me out seeing if I had something they might want or thinking they were missing a sale! tee hee hee

While we are on this subject - anyone else hate - actually I don't like to use that word - dislike - there that's better. Anyone else dislike when the person at the cutting counter asks, "What are you making?" I dread it! I always get "the look." If I say, "I'm making a children's outfit, or a skirt, etc" they give a me this look as if to be thinking to themselves, "whoa! these are wild fabrics to be putting together. Or these fabrics or for making quilts not clothing, etc." I usually just pass on the question and remark by saying, "Oh just building up my stash." I need to come up with some whitty and wild answer that will really take them back! HA!

So all in all I'm not crazy but the fabric does talk to me from time to time. From the picture you can also possibly see what I'll be working on next!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Holiday Spirit?

It's here! My first Holiday inspired outfit of the season - grinch style! A fun collaboration between 4 different designers all with a different area of expertise. I contributed the rockin' mosaic jeans *snicker* - yes it's my blog so I can toot my own horn right? (wink, wink) MonalisaBoutique designed the Euro Twirly top plus she took all the photos and created the festive template as well. Petite Fleur Creation appliqued an adorable jacket and matching tee. And what outfit is complete without jewels! Tara30us created 3 perfectly matching pieces of jewerly to top the outfit off!

You can search greench on ebay to find all the items! Take a peek at the all the details and adorable photos!

alittle more Fall in the air

Or I guess you could say around my house. Anyone tired of me sharing some Fall decorating ideas???? I guess it shouldn't be too bad - I've only made 2 posts on the subject with this being the third. And since we are on the subject - anyone else LOVING the daily newsletter from BGH? wowee!!! What gorgeous pictures and fabulous ideas! My head is swimming with projects I'd love to do!

This week I was able to take a basket my mom was discarding into the "yard sale" pile and make it my new centerpiece for the dining room table. With a little help from my "resources" - (aka - all my extra stuff in cupboards and boxes) *snicker*, and a good sale on some dried and artificial plants I now have a centerpiece I love!

I also ventured out to the garden and harvested gobs of mini pumpkins. Theywere proudly placed in a black shallow wooden tray and sit in the middle of our kitchen island.

Switching gears from decorating to designing - I've got a sneak peek! Here's some fabrics I am working with! hummmm........what will they get turned into???? I've got several new items that will be added to my website VERY soon and also a few auctions on Ebay for those who love the thrill of bidding.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Bad blogger, bad!

I must apologize to all those sweet bloggers who have "tagged" me over the last month or so - hopefully not longer - eek! I got so caught up in my life here that I neglected to fullfill whatever game, etc that you had tagged with me and I am sorry. I've put myself in a voluntary "time out" *snicker* I will also write on the blackboard 50 times - "I will not neglect those who "tag" me. " How does that sound? Off to the time out chair now.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Get your Craft on!

Inspired by Erin and the overwhelming request of - "I want one too" - here you go!

My new short and funky hostess apron! Perfect for welcoming your guests to dinner or simply completing your everyday tasks! Looks stylish and is functional as well! 2 pockets keep your doo-dads handy whether you working a craft show, cleaning the house or cooking up a storm in the kitchen!

and for the DIY type I've added more kits to my site as well! Christmas, chocolate lollipop and the 2 outfits I created for my nieces birthday presents!

and no wise cracks about the model wearing the apron *snicker*

More Autumn decorating

I'm glad that so many of you have enjoyed my decor post. I realized there were a few more items I still needed to share and I have come across a few more ideas I wanted to share as well. First one is if you haven't seen or picked up the latest edition of Better Homes and Garden Magazine - it's fantastic! so many great fun ideas and who doesn't just drool over their pictures. Oh! Love it! They have several cute, stylish yet fun ideas for fall and Halloween too! One of my favorite ideas I saw in their magazine a few years ago they have brought back with a new design this year. Anyway, here is the first version (picture from last year) - stacking pumpkins in a planter and adding leaves, berries etc by your front door or on your porch. I received so many compliments last year. I would love to try their new version this year so snag a magazine to see what they did differently. I'll be sure to post more pictures if I actually get to that "project". *snicker*

Their site is FULL of great ideas for this time of year. I especially love their Fun ways to add Holiday Spirit feature. 19 slideshow pictures with a brief description of how to acheive that same look! Worth taking a peek! And if you are in the Holiday mood sign up for their 100 days of Holidays! Daily short email ideas and inspiration with great crafts, recipes, decorating ideas, and more. The emails start going out Today - September 24th! I receieved my first one and in addition to the idea of the day it gave me links to17 ways to decorate with Fall wreaths, the 25 top apple recipes, costume ideas and MORE!

Recharged and refreshed!

*sigh* - Fall is in the air today and I am LOVIN' IT! The change of seasons brings a new type of energy with it and what better a way to recharge your own energy than with a little getaway trip! Impromptu one at that. Sometimes those can be the best trips! Just throw a few things in a bag - surprise the kids - and head out of town! That is what we did this weekend. We headed to the mountains to a resort town by the lake only a couple of hours away. A quick reservation, great heated indoor pool for the kids, a late night swim once we arrived and beautiful views of the mountains and our surroundings as the sun lit up where we had arrived in the dark the night before, started our day off right. It was a bit chilly in the moutains but such a nice change and the quaintness of the buildings, shops, etc was just refreshing. We didn't waste anytime getting up and getting going either. Our first objective was to drive completely around the lake. We saw some gorgeous homes, deer and stopped along the way to play a bit on the beaches in the 40 some degree morning weather. brrrr. I altered this picture a bit to look more like an old "postcard" - wish you were here.

We explored the town, a few shops and had lunch with a view of the lake and the changing leaves on the trees. Definately a slower pace in smaller towns, and it's good to slow down every now and then right? We also drove to the neighboring new resort - very fancy schmancy - still underconstruction but still fun none the less to tour the grounds, golf course, new homes going in and all the views! wow!!! I took some "artsy fartsy" shots as my hubby likes to call them. I hope you don't mind me sharing a few from our trip.

I just realized that my favorite shots are all ones where I am pretty much looking up at the object I am going to photograph - interesting. wonder what that means? I think I love the way they stand out against the bright blue clear sky. Hopefully you all get some time to recharge you batteries too and spend alittle time with you families away from your everyday life before the holiday season begins.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Loving Fall

I don't think Fall has officially begun - at least not for a few more days but the weather here today sure made it feel like fall! The autumn season is my favorite! It's a time for layering up, cuddling in, gorgeous colors, family gatherings, the begin of the Holiday Season, hearty home cooked meals, breads, etc. I could go on and on. We all associate certain things with each season - smells, colors, decor, events, certain foods, etc. I've taken a bit of time to start decorating my home to reflect the season! It's still a work in progess but here's a few pictures and ideas for you. Maybe they will spark you do alittle decorating too and maybe give you a new idea or two.

One thing I do is I change out several containers, vases, etc that I have at my house 2 or 3 times a year to relfect the season or whatever color or texture is my new infatuation! *wink* For fall I almost always fill these containers with dried grain/grasses, curly willow sticks, etc. Very earthy and a natural feel to them. I also like to "layer" up items for interest and more of grouping feel.

I love candles for anytime of the year as well. The "mood" that they set on a crisp fall evening can be so relaxing and just feels like home to me. Speaking of smells I also stocked up at Bath and Body Works a few weeks ago on their wallflower refill kits when they had their Buy one get one FREE sale - woohoo!!! Love a good sale. So if you stopped by my house would smell like one of the following scents from now through Christmas - Cinnamon Stick, Creamy Caramel, Sweet Cinnamon Pumpkin, and Kitchen Spice. The creamy caramel could be dangerous though as it smells soooo delicous - makes me want to eat sweets all day!

I'm really into filling clear glass containers with objects - like my lemons - and placing them around my house full of color, great and interesting shapes and textures. Here's a few to share - and the mini pumpkins are from my own garden too!

and lastly - let's talk candlesticks! I love taking objects from around my house and re-arranging them and giving them new life in a new spot or grouping. I have some black candlesticks that sit on a sofa table in my living room and I wanted to share some ideas of how you can use them for more than just candles. All of these examples could be used on an entrance table, as a centerpiece, etc. Get creative! I took all my pictures at my dining room table just for lighting purposes.

I started simple with a "clean" feel to it. I have recently discovered or realized I love round objects! Ha! how funny is that. I just picked up these different balls and plunked them on top of the candlesticks paired with a favorite small silver vase and a green "berry" type candle ring. Easy peasy and looks great! Then I really pulled Fall in by bringing in pumpkins - mixing up the feel and the colors.

Adding gourds, leaves, branches, candles - whatever you LOVE you can create a lovely Autumn grouping that is easy to create and change anytime you want!

Here's a few pictures from my house last year too for more ideas.

The first picture I found the green mossy basket, placed some floral foam in the bottom and then layered each flower, berry, etc in a row starting at the back and working my way forward. The second picture I found a shallow black wooden tray in my "stash" of stuff and filled it with random autumn colored objects, vegetables, smooth river rocks and placed a candle holder in the middle and added branches around the outside. This centerpiece was really easy to just pick up and move off of the table when it was meal time.

If you want more ideas for decorating a few of my blogger friends have posted thier fall decor as well! Take a look at Hip and Little, Heather Bullard and Junk 2 Jewels. Happy Decorating!

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Wordless Wednesday - Look up

For more Wordless Wednesday photos click here and here

Monday, September 17, 2007

Swappin' goodies!

Woohoo! another fun mail day! Erin contacted me about creating a funky apron for her to wear at an upcoming indie craft show. She had a few ideas about what she wanted but also left a few details up to me - which I LOVE! She wanted fashionable, yet functional and the more funky it was the better! Here's what I came up with! I almost wanted to keep it for myself! *snicker* I sent it off without her seeing it first and crossed my fingers that she would like it! and well............if you want to know what she thought when she got it take a look HERE

We also decided on a "swap" of merchandise - I've loved her wrap bracelets from afar for awhile so I was excited to swap for one of those! My jewerly arrived today and I absolutely love it! She hung an "M" charm from the bracelet and I love all the colors and shapes of the beads. She also included an EXTRA surprise and I couldn't have been more pleased and giddy when I opened the cute tin and found a pair of earrings inside! Yes the earrings are cute and right up my alley but I love them even more because they are my favorite color!!!! THANK YOU so much Erin! Both pieces couldn't have been more perfect!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

A positively "Posh" afternoon

After shipping off 3 orders today and getting a fourth one underway I figured I was due for a bit of fun! And with the autumn season approaching - my favorite by the way - I am itching to break out the Fall Decor and switch the colors around in my living room, dining room and Kitchen. Plus a few new things wouldn't hurt right? (wink) Shopping here I come! I also tend to get the urge to craft and create in the fall. Must be some sort of "nesting" instinct - to snuggle down in the warm blankets, break out the sweaters and cook hearty warm meals for the family. Do you get that way too???

So I headed out to a craft store to see what fun containers I could find or what jumped out at me. Sadly - nothing did. *sigh* Didn't really have what I was looking for. I did walk out with a can of spray adhesive - more on that to come later. (wink, wink)

Next stop was a home decor outlet store in the area that is only open on Thursdays. They have great stuff at great prices but its a madhouse! Everyone is there for opening for sure b/c once it's gone it may be gone for good. Their store "policy" or suggestion is - "If you like it, buy it. It may not be here next week." I hadn't been in awhile because it can be crazy - the parking is worse - and taking kids there isn't always the best idea or easiest thing to manage. But what's a mother to do. I'm hardly every without one of them! LOL!!! Luckily for me my little guy behaved so nicely and had fun "touching" everything and discovering "treasures" with me as well. We emerged from the store Victorious! I found the "containers" I was wanting plus a few fun things to help spruce up our living area. I've got a few "projects" I'm anxious to complete to help us get organized with school items etc. I'll share those as I get them finished - hopefully soon.

My son fell asleep on the way home from our shopping excursion so iwith a bit of quiet time before my daughter would be out of school, I felt like I needed alittleentertainment - and I found it! I hardly EVER watch TV during the day and only watch TV at night when the regular season of my favorite shows starts again. So I've been alittle TV deprived this summer - if you exclude DVDs. ANYWAY - anyone feel like I am rambling on and on *snicker* - I happened to stumble upon the TV show "Victoria Beckham comes to America" on the internet the other day and didn't get a chance to watch it. It was hilarious!!!! she is funny and they way the producers put it together was funny! Just the amount of comic relief I needed. She uses words like "Fabulous" and "Major" frequently. I love the english accent and their terms for certain items like "knickers" instead of underwear to just great! Makes me want to walk around being "Fabulous" with my big sunglasses and pouty lips! LOL!!! The show also showed her personable side which you don't get from the photos of her - but really - who would enjoy paparazzi around you 24/7 every time you try to leave your house - UGH!

So all in all it was a positively "posh" afternoon. I enjoyed every minute! Back to decorating for fall - I'm torn about how to decorate for "halloween" this year.I'm trying to find a balance between fun halloween items that the kids might enjoy being around for Halloween YET still have them reflect my style. do you know what I mean? We really don't have any halloween decor. I think I got it rid of all last year or the year before. So that's my dilemma and my "misson". I have a few projects in mind that I will be sharing with all of you - stay tuned for those - but I'd LOVE to hear your suggestions or links to projects or ideas!!! and probably everyone else would too!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Wordless Wednesday - building creativity

for more Wordless Wednesday photos visit here and here

Monday, September 10, 2007

The invisible Mom

I am not usually one to forward emails or share things like this but this story is really worth the read. It may look long in length but I was so glad I took the few minutes it took to read it over. I created a stir in my soul and made me want to reach out to other Mothers. Hopefully by posting here I can achieve that in some small way.

It started to happen gradually. One day I was walking my son Jake to school. I was holding his hand and we were about to cross the street when the crossing guard said to him, 'Who is that with you, young fella?' 'Nobody,' he shrugged. Nobody? The crossing guard and I laughed. My son is only 5, but as we crossed the street I thought, 'Oh my goodness, nobody?'
I would walk into a room and no one would notice. I would say something to my family - like 'Turn the TV down, please' - and nothing would happen. Nobody would get up, or even make a move for the remote. I would stand there for a minute, and then I would say again, a little louder, 'Would someone turn the TV down?' Nothing.
Just the other night my husband and I were out at a party. We'd been there for about three hours and I was ready to leave. I noticed he was talking to a friend from work. So I walked over, and when there was a break in the conversation, I whispered, 'I'm ready to go when you are.' He just kept right on talking.
That's when I started to put all the pieces together. I don't think he can see me.
I don't think anyone can see me.
I'm invisible.
It all began to make sense, the blank stares, the lack of response, the way one of the kids will walk into the room while I'm on the phone and ask to be taken to the store. Inside I'm thinking, 'Can't you see I'm
on the phone?' Obviously not. No one can see if I'm on the phone, or cooking, or sweeping the floor, or even standing on my head in the corner, because no one can see me at all.
I'm invisible.
Some days I am only a pair of hands, nothing more: Can you fix this?
Can you tie this? Can you open this?
Some days I'm not a pair of hands; I'm not even a human being. I'm a clock to ask, 'What time is it?' I'm a satellite guide to answer, 'What number is the Disney Channel?' I'm a car to order, 'Right around 5:30, please.' I was certain that these were the hands that once held books and the eyes that studied history and the mind that graduated summa cum laude - but now they had disappeared into the peanut butter, never to be seen again.

She's going... she's going... she's gone!
One night, a group of us were having dinner, celebrating the return of a friend from England Janice had just gotten back from a fabulous trip, and she was going on and on about the hotel she stayed in. I was sitting there, looking around at the others all put together so well. It was hard not to compare and feel sorry for myself as I looked down at my out-of-style dress; it was the only thing I could find that was clean. My unwashed hair was pulled up in a banana clip and I was afraid I could actually smell peanut butter in it. I was feeling pretty pathetic, when Janice turned to me with a beautifully wrapped package, and said, 'I brought you this.'

It was a book on the great cathedrals of Europe I wasn't exactly sure why she'd given it to me until I read her inscription: 'To Charlotte , with
admiration for the greatness of what you are building when no one sees.'
In the days ahead I would read - no, devour - the book. And I would discover what would become for me, four life-changing truths, after which I could pattern my work:
No one can say who built the great cathedrals - we have no record of their names.These builders gave their whole lives for a work they would never see finished.
They made great sacrifices and expected no credit.
The passion of their building was fueled by their faith that the eyes of God saw everything.
A legendary story in the book told of a rich man who came to visit the cathedral while it was being built, and he saw a workman carving a tiny
bird on the inside of a beam. He was puzzled and asked the man, 'Why are you spending so much time carving that bird into a beam that will be covered by the roof? No one will ever see it.' And the workman replied, 'Because God sees.'
I closed the book, feeling the missing piece fall into place. It was almost as if I heard God whispering to me, 'I see you, Charlotte. I see the sacrifices you make every day, even when no one around you does. No act of kindness you've done, no sequin you've sewn on, no cupcake you've baked, is too small for me to notice and smile over. You are building a great cathedral, but you can't see right now what it will become.'
At times, my invisibility feels like an affliction. But it is not a disease that is erasing my life. It is the cure for the disease of my own self-centeredness. It is the antidote to my strong, stubborn pride. I keep the right perspective when I see myself as a great builder. As one of the people who show up at a job that they will never see finished, to work on something that their name will never be on. The writer of the book went so far as to say that no cathedrals could ever be built in our lifetime because there are so few people willing to sacrifice to that degree.
When I really think about it, I don't want my son to tell thefriend he's bringing home from college for Thanksgiving, 'My mom gets up at 4 in the morning and bakes homemade pies, and then she hand bastes a turkey for three
hours and presses all the linens for the table.'
That would mean I'd built a shrine or a monument to myself.
I just want him to want to come home.
And then, if there is anything more to say to his friend, to add, 'You're gonna love it there.'
As mothers, we are building great cathedrals. We cannot be seen if we're
doing it right. And one day, it is very possible that the world will marvel, not only at what we have built, but at the beauty that has been added to the
world by the sacrifices of invisible women.

photo by Piero Sierra

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Let's Accessorize ~ C.O.Designs style!

working, working, working! I know I've been a bit quiet the last couple of weeks. Well.............between school starting up, dance classes, preschool and a mirad of other things PLUS working on getting my new "Accessorize!" section added to my website I didn't get my blogging in! LOL!!! But I do have alot to show for it! yeah!!!! I'm so happy to debut 4 styles of Skinny Scarves, 2 purses and 1 new apron. Thank you, thank you for the wonderful response, encouragment and requests for these items! I'm doing by best to keep up with the demand. LOL!
I'm also working on my Thanksgiving and Christmas Holiday items now as well. Look for those coming soon in October! Great for gifts, entertaining and MORE! And if you don't want to miss what's coming next please sign up for my newsletter! It's quick and painless (wink) - promise! Just fill in the box on the right!
I'd love to know what your favorite new design is or what you are looking for with the upcoming Holidays coming. I'd love to tailor a product towards YOU!

Friday, September 7, 2007

Special Delivery!

I have mail! Me! just for Me! I never have "fun" mail days when packages arrive just for "moi". Sure, I love it when fabrics or products come on the mail - but those are for other designs and certainly not a surprise! I've been quite jealous of Kim who posted about her fun "mail" day and now I get a turn too!

I was blessed to receive a surprise BOX in the mail last week. The doorbell rang and sitting outside my door was a very colorful bright green oblong box. Knowing it was a special delivery and seeing my name on the label I almost turned around to grab my camera and snap a picture of it to share on my blog! LOL!!!! that's when you know you have a blogging problem. *wink* I didn't but instead snatched it up and went directly into my husbands office. "Is there something you want to tell me?" I asked him. He said no but told me to open it immediately as he wanted to know who it was from as well teasing me about a secret admirer or some boyfriend on the side - HA! Like I have time for that! LOL!!!

Anyway, to make a short story even shorter, it turned out to be a beautiful yellow flower arrangement with a sweet notecard from a dear customer. I was shocked! Just a thank you bouquet for "rushing" an outfit so it would arrive for her daughter's first day of preschool. I truly felt blessed and wear a smile each time they catch my eye. Thank YOU Miss R!

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Preschool + pampering = good times!

Yesterday marked the 1st of preschool for my little guy! He's been paitently waiting for his day in the sun and to be some what as grown up as his big sis - this was the day! He LOVED every minute of it and thinks it's so cool to be able to have his "own school". He picked out his own "Superman" backpack to buy a few weeks ago and got to help gather up his school supplies. He picked out his own shirt to wear on the first day as well. He's getting to BIG to FAST!!! How does that happen? and is seems everyone kids do it! LOL

After my hubby and I had dropped him off and we arrived back home I took a moment and realized and quiet and still it was on the house with both of the kids gone on a weekday! Well the quiet and stillness didn't last long! I headed straight for the stereo - tuned it into my favorite station and turned it up!!!!! Not disney tunes, toddler songs or anything else that is usually playing around here AND in the car but something I liked! woohooo!

Don't get me wrong - I love being a Mom - but every good mom needs a little time to refuel once in awhile. So after some quick clean up around the house I headed for my appointment to get my hair done! It's get to not have to worry about finding a babysitter in the middle of day.

I had to get my cut shaped up and then I wanted to go darker for Fall with my color as well. My hairstylist weaved in 3 different colors - A dark brown, a Honey and reddish color. The combination is really pretty - I'm just still getting used to it a bit. ;) Of course I wouldn't leave you hangin' without a picture!

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Have your cake and eat it too........and then have some more and more and MORE!

We have a couple of "cluster" birthday months in my family - August being one of them where there are several birthdays and several parties to attend. The August birthdays all happen to fall at the end of the month so within a week we attended 3 family birthday parties. Would have been 4 BUT my sister chose not to have a family get together this year. PLUS add in a birthday party for my daughter friend and that's ALOT of cake, ice cream, party favors and FUN for 1 week! LOL

Don't get me wrong it was great to "party" that much in one week especially because 2 of the family birthdays being celebrated were the BIG 1st birthday! I just love those! We attended Miss J's outdoor party in the gorgeous setting of the mountains, sunset, horses in the pasture and the quiet that surrounding brings. Just the getaway I needed for a few hours. She was a doll too and plunged right into her cake giving everyone GREAT "messy" cake pictures.

I was also able to snap a few pictures from the surrounding area even making my husband drive back by an old barn just so I could photograph it. I would have liked to have gotten some closer shots of the barn but I was too afraid of a neighbor or someone coming out to tell me I couldn't do that. *snicker* Anyone have simliar experiences? Where it should be OK to do something but you're afraid it's not and that you'll get in trouble???? LOL

Then we were off to Miss K's 1st birthday Party just a few short days later for more fun!

Both of the new 1 year old girls got their own custom creation suited for their personality from me for their birthday. It was fun to create a surprise for them and without being given a theme to do. My sweet daughter helped pick out the fabrics and even cut some of the pieces. She also wanted to have a say in how the fabrics got laid out as well. It was fun to create them with her. Each got a pair of Shaggy Mosaic jeans and a matching Shaggy Initial tee. Miss J's was very wild and funky and Miss K's was very Paris Ooh La la girly.

All in all my family had our fill of birthday cake for awhile. But it's fun to celebrate with family and get together for those milestones - don't you think?