{ one year later }

I'm working tonight on getting things in order for our first Friday weekend at the store.  The shop has been a blessing in so many ways.


But the hard fact is that I wouldn't be doing it at all if, one year ago, things in my life hadn't come to a complete, heartbreaking stop.

These days are hard.

The trauma of what we endured keeps replaying in my head.  Conversations with doctors.  Driving in the car.  Sounds.  Silence...  Every single minute of those horrific days is still crystal clear. 

Occasionally someone will ask me about my shop name.

The thing is, (and Jane Austen fans will know this already) Pemberley is the name of the Darcy family estate in my favorite novel, Pride & Prejudice.  And so my work at Pemberlie is dedicated to my little Darcy, the one I held for three hours, one year ago tomorrow. The perfect little sister with a knot in her cord.

Tonight and this weekend I am working as hard as I can.  I need to be the best version of me.  For her. 

I welcome a full day of work tomorrow and this weekend with the same arms I held my sweet angel August 3, 2011. 

Good night, Darcy.  You are loved.

{ love this! } things I'd like to try + a baby blanket

blanket for ella

As if a mile-high stack of clothing projects in the sewing room, kitchen makeover planning, that etsy shop that keeps staring with sad doggy eyes, and a new workout regime weren't already fighting for every spare minute of my time... I keep finding little projects here and there and adding them to my list.


This tiny little play house at house wren studio

Alicia's wrist cuff tutorial

Dyeing trim and what not a la Beki

Crochet a flowered baby beanie cap once I have figured out how to crochet.

The Japanese coin purse at Purl Bee

the nursery is red and black and white

And I have been terrible about reading up on everything these days, so I'm sure there are more fun projects out there.  What are you wanting to try???


Photos are of a baby blanket made for Fidget's former teacher, Miss Andrea.  Fidge was so excited to attend her very first baby shower.  

Like the blanket that Jade made for Wonderbaby, this one is backed with a fuzzy minky fabric, turned inside out and topstitched around the edge for closure.  There must be something to it, because WB kept wanting to snuggle it, too.

Happy Weekending! xoxo

{ home } Wonderbaby's Room

15 months ago I had a baby.  Since we didn't know for certain (although Hubs 100% suspected) that our newest little bundle would be yet another girl, the nursery sat unadorned for many months.  

Many months.

And then I started picking away at it. 

Knowing that by the time it was complete, she would be quite past the new-baby stage (sigh.  Do not let me go There.), I didn't want to incorporate anything that we would have to switch out again for a few years.

Also, there was the color palette. Deep Red.  Aqua.  Bright yellow.  Pink.  An overscaled Heather Bailey Pineapple Brocade!  I could even do it from my stash, as there was serious yardage left over from a project for the teengirl that took a u-turn long ago. 


Honestly, when I shared this with others, there was often a courteous smile and nod. I am positive they thought I was creating some kind of circus-like nightmare. Giant pineapples in a baby's room. Heavens to Betsy!


Neveryoumind.  I knew what I was doing and marched on, albeit with some trepidation.


There is a mini down comforter for which I made a duvet.  Wonderbaby likes her blankets and coziness.  The bedding is simple.  I made a pink bedskirt and added coordinating ties to a simple pink yard-sale bumper.  The framed crewel piece is one of my favorite finds from a local thrift.  I've had it for years and it works perfectly in here.


The window faces east, so it is lit up with the most gorgeous sunshine in the morning.  Makes getting decent photos a bit tricky for some reason... seems like there is either a lot of light in there, or not.  At any rate, The exposure meant that the floor length curtains needed a heavy duty lining.  I tried pleating the curtains for the first time, and they are quite far from perfect, but I like how it reduced bulk at the rod.  And it gives a playful print a more tailored look.


The dresser was picked up for $25 and given a new life with paint.  I love love love this color.  It's not too bubble gum or cadillac.  The hardware is original.  I know, it was perfect.   I say it all the time, but  they just don't make furniture like this anymore. They don't.  It is so solid!  (Do you like the finger smudges on the mirror?!  Good.  I'm just keeping it real. )

crib corner and wall art

There are plenty of blankets that get moved around and used all over.  One is a gorgeous quilt made by Beki, another is a red baby blanket from miss laeroport, one was picked up in the nie-nie auction in 2008, and a couple others are vintage finds that I had to rescue.  They take turns in the crib and out and sometimes covering up with white rocker that has seen years of constant use.  Jade made us one as well, but babygirl has adopted that as her snuggly favorite and it is never around for a photoshoot. 


My favorite corner of the room is this, which is directly in front of you when you are walking up the stairs. The print is from Elsie, and I picked it up at the Red Velvet Art brick and mortar store when home in Springfield last year.  The red shoes are from Jen.  I made the green dress in a last minute mad dash for St. Patty's wear.  The deer was picked up antiquing with my mom in Florida two years ago.


I still love embroidery.  The simple stuff especially.  I'm breaking tradition and by putting it up there, but I really like how her name became art so easily. 


My mother in law made a cross stitch birth announcement for the wall, and it hangs by my rocker with this felt circle garland (from the Craft Hope for Haiti fundraiser) that I love but for which I can't seem to find a home.  That moves around the room and sometimes comes downstairs for parties.  Lucky garland!

The nursery is not finished, of course.  What room ever is?  I have a vinyl cuckoo clock decal on it's way from Etsy to go over the mirror, and some day I would love to replace this carpet and/or get a pretty area rug.  But for now, it's all good. 


It's a happy little space and Wonderbaby wakes up cheery every day. 

{ sewing } baby quilt for Rory

We have been celebrating the sweetest news a la Fence.


There is a new cousin to love.


To snuggle.


To grow with.

rory quilt

Another little girl for the gaggle.


And we are so very very thrilled.

Rory quilt

Little Rory, we can't wait to love you up in person.   (New Mexico is So Far!)

Rory quilt

miss chris and her girlies


Supplies:  vintage sheeting + quilting cotton + flannel backing.  

Technique: In lieu of batting, I used simple quilter's cotton inside.  This is not a fluffy or stiff quilt -- very lightweight!  Running-stitch embroidery both before and after quilting.  Cotton heart doily applique on reverse.  Crazy quilted stripes in all directions. 

I loved making this one with all my heart.  The sheets are so incredibly soft, and the doily adds that special extra texture that babies love. We heard the nursery was pink and brown (or tan), so I just went with that. I hope it doesn't clash too terribly much and gets lots of use.

{ sewing } t-shirt to tiny dress refashion

What started out as a simple 'mommy's t-shirt to toddler dress refashion' turned into a photoshoot with my cheeky Wonderbaby. Happens like that sometimes.

I have a tutorial in the works, but I thought I'd just show you the fun we had yesterday while I was trying to get The After Photo.  (Because everybody like Wonderbaby pics, right?)

{ oh heavens, I'm melting. }

{ not thrilled about the headband }

{ ace }

{ 13 mos }

{ 13 months }

Thanks for indulging me.  There are days I just want a Pause button.  Yesterday was one of them.  


My baby isn't really a baby anymore.

She is starting to take steps.

We are in the beginning stages of saying words we all understand.  She has kind of decided she likes a sippy cup of milk better than a snuggle with mommy.  Don't get me started on that one.  Sniff. 

She is growing into this happy go lucky little toddler that just wants to hang out with her older sisters and play and put on makeup and pet the dog and say Mooo and blow kisses and dig in the sandbox and eat everything in sight.  She is a snuggle-bunny and a hide-and-seeker.  She has a deep belly laugh that reminds me of Fidget at that age.  

What a privilege it is to get to raise these kiddos.  They teach and delight me more than I ever could in return.

Well.  I didn't mean to say all that, but I guess I'm feeling sentimental. 

All-righty then!


In other news, Craft Hope's Project 9 was announced yesterday!  This is such an amazing community, I get goosebumps just thinking about all the beautiful, generous hearts there are in this world.   Over 65,000 washcloths were made and delivered by crafters to the IMMS Center for Project 8.  There was such a response that the project had to be put ON HOLD because the center now has more towels than they can store or will need to clean rescued wildlife for quite a while.  Awesome. 

And I'm sure the outpouring of love will be just a great for Project 9!  From the Craft Hope site:

For Project 9 we will be working with ConKerr Cancer to benefit terminally ill children. ConKerr Cancer was established two years ago to put smiles upon the faces of terminally ill children in the hospital. They provide bright and cheery handmade pillowcases for these children. They have succeeded in delivering 225,000 pillowcases up to this date. They have a goal of providing a beautiful pillowcase for every seriously ill child in North America by 2012. Well I think we can just help them achieve that goal don’t you?

If you are planning to participate, please visit the link above for details and leave a comment so they can anticipate the response.  Thank you!

miss chris

{ celebrate } ACE is one!

It really has been a year since I had this little monkey.  


Yes, time flies.  It's driving me crazy!  I am not ready to let her grow up yet. 

However, the family kept asking about a party.

And the calendar doesn't lie.

And so.  My baby.  My littlest girl.  Turned one.  And we threw her a party. *sniff*

happy birthday, ace

We had a nice little shindig with immediate family who came to town, balloons, cake, hamburgers, chips and Jones Soda.  Apparently, you can have your own bottle labels made, which is very cool.

re-labeled jones soda bottles

We went the old school route and soaked off the labels and replaced them with simple ones that matched our table.

water bottles

And added some tags to water bottles.  Her classic monogram is aCe, something I could not help but use over.  And over.  And over again.

happy birthday, ace

I am now officially on the paper circle cutter train.  Total believer in their magic.  I have a 2" cutter and a 1" cutter.  And I want to cut everything into circles now. 

la table

We made our own pink table linens over a year ago for Fidget's 3rd birthday, and they get constant use with three girls in the house. 

Craft paper and photo circles (ahem) worked for napkin rings.

ace napkin rings

And the cake.  Well.  Have I got a funny story for you.  It involves me deciding to go with store bought cake because I had a lot going on last week and a husband out of town and just

It could be a rather long post. 

And it's a very funny story.

The good news is, I kept my cool.

And there was cake.

happy birthday, ace  

Plenty of it.

happy birthday, ace


The little monkey loved her first baby doll.  Fidget likes this baby, too... and is already trying to negotiate some kind of time-share with it.  I'll let you know how that goes.

happy birthday, ace

Fidget wanted to get her baby sister a bubble machine.

happy birthday, ace

I wonder why.


Summer is fun.  But my kids' schedules are kicking my backside.  You?



Still here!

pizza lover

It's really hard to sit down and blog when I've got this clamoring for my attention. (One year, almost!!!  Crazyness.)


Summer is here. We are out in the yard.

this morning's project. quick and dirty.

In the sandbox.


Eating freezer pops and blowing bubbles.

autumn dog

Growing sunflowers. And hydrangeas.

waiting to be planted.

It's been slim pickings around these parts, I know. Things slowing around La Fence have an inverse correlation with things ramping up to hyper-speed here around La Casa...

We'll be around. xoxo

{ home } eventually, I'll do a nursery post

Like, before she's one?  We'll see.  Problem is, my free time tends to happen when little missy is asleep in there.  Anyway, here's another peek at that sweet little green dress her mama made her wear the other day.  Poor thing.

It looks much more Swiss Miss than Irish to me, but I still love it.

nursery + green dress

Those little red shoes were a baby gift from my dear friend Jen. (ages ago.) 

The print is a signed Elsie original from the bricks and mortar shop of Red Velvet Art.  I love this shop for so many reasons.  The stuff is cute cute cute.  They are living the dream of owning a little shop in a cool old building in a refurbished old part of town by the railroad tracks.  In the town I went to high school.  (The same high school, I have to mention because it is almost a rule, that Brad Pitt and Lucas Grabeel went to.)  I know, big times. Anyway, Elsie and the girls are just adorable.  Just go check them out if you haven't already...

Of course, they are going to make the rest of my post seem boring and predictable.

The dress?  It had little red vintage buttons you couldn't see in the photo on Wednesday.  I am almost 100% sure these were from my mom's stash I inherited when they moved last year.

vintage buttons too

This was the perfect little project for the thrifted eyelet trim (a yard or less) that I've had forever.  I had forgotten about it.  Now I want to add it to everything.

+ trim

Not pictured in the top photo is this pretty mobile I bought - new, even!  GASP - from an art shop in Columbia, MO, called Bluestem Missouri Crafts.  It is a wonderful store.  And it's local, which always makes me happy. 

Love mobile in the nursery

I love love love it.


Happy weekending.  I am working on some shop stuff and need to get my head around some new ideas.  I'm so inspired these days and I need to prioritize my plans.  Right now I'm a crazy woman.  A fun, happy crazy woman.  But crazy, nonetheless.  (you'll love me anyway, right?)


{ bit o green } happy St. Patty's Day

I'm not Irish, but I sure do like to herald the coming of Spring with green around here.

bits o green

in the dining room,

bits o green

in our makeshift greenhouse of a kitchen, and

bits o green

on unsuspecting little sweeties who will wear whatever their mama pulls over the head.  She loves shoes already.  Oy. 

I love this green print, by the way.  It reminds me of a favorite dress my mom had made me when I was about four years old.  It had capped puff sleeves and a short hem. White or yellow Rick Rack, too, I think.   I wore it with knee socks and red t-strap buster browns.  There is a photo somewhere.  I have a short boyish mop of super straight white-blond hair and a pixie nose. 1976.  Sweet.

This is part of 2 yards I picked up at a thrift store over a year ago and I'm always chicken to use it. (because of the nostalgia, mostly) This morning I decided something festive was in order, so I got brave, cut into it and made this simple dress that does look very handmade, but I love it anyway.   I'll share another view of it eventually -- but I couldn't wait and it had to be worn. 

Crew-to-Cardigan how-tos soon.  Specifically, the t-shirt trim.  I am obsessed. 

Happy St. Patty's Day. 

{ sewing: home } nursery sneak peek

Happy Friday! 


The nursery is coming along.  It's not finished, but I couldn't go any longer without sharing photos.  She's five months old already, for crying out loud.  (*sniff*  Really?)

tiny duvet cover

changing pad on the dresser

I do believe the dresser was made to be this color.  It feels like full-size Barbie furniture now.

so close...

I'm having fun with Babygirl's first initial, can you tell?

Ok, full size pics soon.  First there is the matter of a dresser mirror.  And I do need to finish those curtains.  Of course, I should take them down so that when she is sleeping, I can actually work on them.  Details.

Have a good weekend, my friends!