Chouette: Beds in bloom Monday, Apr 19 2010 

Over at Aged and Gilded:

Oh so lovely beds, to be experienced at the grey of a European dawn — upon awakening, thirsty for the new day, or just coming in, welcoming the sunrise with indulgent slumber.

Such rich sleep might offer dreams of pretty posies, like those pictured in Monday’s mosaic: fine, old roses and tulips by the armsful, like so many little blushing baubles.

à bientôt…Tatie

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Liberty, equality and oil cloth Saturday, Apr 17 2010 

When Olivia was little and I had the great pleasure of creating a classic wardrobe for her, one of my special treats was buying one piece of Liberty of London tana lawn fabric and turning it into a sweet little day dress.

I’ve had a passion for Liberty ever since, and I even had the opportunity to shop in the legendary Liberty store in London a few years ago.

So, it tickled me recently when Olivia and I were in
Target and discovered that they were carrying a line of Liberty products. She was enchanted by the Art Deco-influenced prints and bought a darling
spring frock. I love it when things come full circle!

Then, I learned about a neat little concept store in Paris, Merci, where they are carrying a special Liberty collection. The oilcloth is truly la crème!

So much goodness! And the icing on the cupcake for me was finding Liberty’s Victoria & Albert fabric collection, celebrating the quilt exhibition at the V&A, my favorite London museum.

Hope you enjoy all of the Liberty images as much as I did collecting them. Vive la Liberty!

à bientôt…Tatie

All my eggs in more than one basket Wednesday, Mar 31 2010 

At the Holiday Inn known as chez moi, it’s Easter season, and I’ve had so much fun this year decorating eggs and baskets. My favorites are above.

At left is a small dark brown basket that I distressed with plain old acrylic paint. (I mix my vintage-look pastels by starting with a creamy ivory, then adding color just a tiny bit at a time  — instead of starting with a color and trying to lighten it. I get softer, older looking tints that way.) Nestled inside is a papier mâché egg box, which I painted and spattered, then découpaged with German diecut scrap. Top and bottom of the egg box is edged with tiny Dresden beading. All of which, of course, came from D. Blümchen & Co.

The basket at right is one the Easter bunny put together and will deliver Sunday. It includes another papier mâché egg box, painted and splattered and decorated similarly to the green one. The bunny filled the basket with old-fashioned excelsior, in thoroughly modern pink and green, and added a family of antique chalkware chicks. I found them last week at Elena Graves’ wonderful Spring Fling sale. And don’t the crêpe paper posies bring spring to life in this basket?

A couple of other variations on the papier mâché egg box are below. I am especially fond of the one that I découpaged with Cavallini Paris map paper and Martha Stewart ribbon.

I also worked with some vintage Easter containers. First was the old egg carton that I painted and embellished inside and out with various techniques — including acrylic gel image transfer and stamping. As you can probably guess, I am especially fond of my set of Cavallini French word. stamps.

A lot of you are too young to remember them, but I found a couple of old Easter cottage cheese cartons on eBay, and they made nice homes for a few of my little eggs, along with whimsical bunny florist’s sprays.

Last is a robin’s egg basket that I distressed with brown paint, which made a fine nesting place for a dapper white bunny in a bow-tie, another find from Elena’s little market.

Well, thanks for indulging me in this l-o-o-o-o-n-g post. I hope you’ve enjoyed it and that you all have a wonderful rest of the Easter and Passover week.

À bientôt!…Tatie


La Poste: Treasure trove alert Wednesday, Mar 24 2010 

When my newsletter from D. Blumchën and Co. comes, I stop whatever I am doing, and take a peek.

This wonderful old store imports all kinds of treasures, many of them from Germany. They are a craft artisan’s candy store. And for holiday addicts like me, they are the best fix.

Blumchën is currently featuring Easter goods — from vintage decorations to papier mâché eggs to decorate to German paper scrap for collaging. And they do have those wonderful sugar panorama eggs (which I have made before and much prefer to buy).

As you may or may not know, Germans own Christmas. So many of our holiday traditions come from Germany, and Christmas is a specialty at Blumchën. A lot of their stock (like the wonderful Santa garland below) sells out early, so don’t miss out.

While Christmas may be their specialty, if you are a fool for Halloween (like my sister Bendie), you will think Blumchën is simply spooktacular.

Expect to fall in love with Blumchën‘s Valentine treasures.

For craft artisans, you will find supplies at Blumchën that are difficult if not impossible to find elsewhere. I particularly like their papier mâché boxes, and I can’t wait to find the time to dress up one of the little papier mâché walnuts and place one of my littlest dolls inside (see below, left).

Blumchën is a great source for Dresden — die-cut foiled paper that comes in many forms, from borders and edgings to bunnies and the elegant “bonbonnière” (candy container) that can be made from the Dresden pictured below, right.

For the dolls’ milliner (hat maker), Blumchën imports wonderful tiny flowers, like those pictured and lots more, for trimming dolly’s bonnet.

If you have enjoyed these adorable images, do yourself a favor, and sign up for Blumchën‘s e-mail newsletter. You’ll rip it open the minute you see it in the inbox.

à bientôt…Tatie

La Poste: No biscuit in these baskets Wednesday, Mar 24 2010 

(Pardon the random hockey reference, but I’ll be brimming with them as my Predators inch along the ice toward the playoffs!)

As promised, here are a few of Martha Stewart’s Easter baskets, via her daily craft newsletter.

I am especially fond of the blue basket of glass-glitter eggs (being German-American, I’m all about my glass glitter) and the clover basket. If I can remember to get started early growing the clover, that one is definitely on next year’s agenda.

Look at all of Martha’s baskets. You may find more that you like.

La Poste: Oeufs à la Martha Tuesday, Mar 23 2010 

Want to be overwhelmed with creative ideas? Sign up for Martha Stewart’s daily craft newsletter at the empire, marthastewart.com.

There are days when I toss it unread, others when I wouldn’t miss reading it. Today’s was the latter — 61 ways to decorate Easter eggs.

My favorites are below. Stay tuned for Martha’s Easter baskets — and a few of my own Easter creations.

à bientôt…Tatie

Chouette: Shadow, silver and stone Thursday, Mar 18 2010 

Isa’s Little World makes me feel a little like Alice, opening a tall old battered green gate that creaks with the promise of unknown excitement on the other side.

Take a peek through the hedgerow below, and you’ll see why I keep going back.

à bientôt…Tatie

Pin your hopes on luck o’ the Irish Thursday, Mar 11 2010 

In the great old Christmas movie Holida y Inn, Bing Crosby has a pretty little New England country inn that he only opens on holidays.

I love holidays, too, and I like to collect vintage trinkets from holidays all the year round.

One lovely way I celebrate old-fashioned holidays is with my little half-doll pin cushions, dressed in holiday theme hankies.

My favorite is one I made using a St. Patrick’s Day hankie. I repeated the theme in the shamrocks painted on the dolls’s bonnet and the soft green of her bodice.

I have used several hankies from my Valentine’s Day collection to make half-doll pin cushions. The one pictured below is my latest, and it recently sold on eBay.

Another of my half-doll pin cushions is included below, though it’s not from my Holiday Inn collection.

She features the Rochard technique for decorating porcelain and also sold recently on eBay. Before firing, tiny indentations are made in the porcelain, where rhinestones are “set.” The jewelry image is completed with raised 14K gold or silver painted detailing.

Let me know, at atelier.cheri@gmail.com, if I can create a one-of-a-kind half-doll pincushion for you, to celebrate your favorite holiday.

à bientôt…Tatie

Chouette: aged, gilded and bellissima Tuesday, Mar 9 2010 

Stroll over to Aged and Gilded, a delicious design blog, with an emphasis on palazzos and interiors.

I especially like the Mosaic Monday feature, when Aged and Gilded posts a collage like this one, with a tulle theme. (And I adore all things tulle!):

Mosaic Monday from Aged and Gilded

This is just one many design blogs that I keep on the homepage of my iPhone for when I want to dream a little. I will be introducing these treasures from time to time, with a Chouette announcement.

Enjoy more below from Aged and Gilded. à bientôt…Tatie

Leading the ladies: Not to be forgotten Monday, Mar 8 2010 

My red carpet roundup would not be complete without Nashville’s prettiest, Faith Hill and her stunning gown. I like it, I love it!

Also, Mariska Hargitay was her usual gorgeous self in midnight blue, and I really liked all the gray tulle that Elizabeth Banks chose.

That should just about do it from me on this year’s red-carpet runway.

à bientôt…Tatie

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