Friday, September 28, 2012

Sacha and her wonderful finds!

And of course, Sacha Kay finds the most amazing things in France! This piano shawl conjures up images of flappers singing on piano's in a smoke filled room with a cigarette in one hand and a glass absinthe in other....liberating women from the bonds of corsets and society!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Bag??? WHAT BAG????

I have this most gorgeous Italian crocodile briefcase and Sacha is making me sell it!!!

My laptop fits right into it...I should be able to keep it...yes???

Don't you agree???


(LOL  Poor Sacha, she gets blamed for everything!  She actually encouraged me to KEEP it, I almost fell out of my chair!  It's so gorgeous she was allowing me to have it in my closet...bless her heart!)

How many of these can a girl have though?

Fine. It's in our Ebay shop Sacha Kay. I want more lavender. Humph.

And my Victorian Celluloid Photo Album...

Lots of old cabinet photos.

I love these old pictures, everyone looked so serious!

And that's my round up for the day!

Friday, September 21, 2012

It works! Homemade Laundry Powder!

And what do you think Sacha and I do when we're not cleaning, listing, flea marketing, 
listing more, and just plain working?

We play of course!

 I found a recipe for homemade laundry soap and being as that we have to wash everything that comes through our doors, anything to save some money I'm going to give a try!

Of course I was skeptical. I've been using Tide since my Mom used it on my clothes and I'm 53.
So getting me to use something else was going to be impressive!

And as soon as I remember WHERE I found this on the internet, I'll link back to it.
Not that I stayed with the original recipe or anything..but still...


I tried the grating method on my first batch. It works like a charm in the washing machine.
I hand wash and soak a lot of linens,
so my next batch I put in the food processor and ground it small.
Love it!

Found it!  Being Creative 
This was the original recipe:

1 4 lb 12 oz box Borax (2.15 kg or 76 oz) found in the detergent isle

1 4 lb box Arm & Hammer Baking Soda (1.81 kg) found in the cooking isle

1  box Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda 55 oz (3 lb 7 oz) found in the detergent isle

3 bars of Fels-Naptha soap, found in the detergent isle (if you use Zote bars use 2 bars instead, Zote can be found at Home Depot)

2 small containers of Oxy Clean or store brand Oxy Clean (try to get about 3.5 lbs total (1.58 kg)) found in the detergent isle.
(this is optional, I added it into mine because I have pretty messy kids and the cleaner the better)

You should be able to find all of these items at your grocery store.

**Use 1-2 Tablespoons per load. I know that does not seem like enough but this recipe does not have fillers like the store bought detergent so you only need 1-2 Tablespoons.**

My recipe:

And yay! I found a new use for my pink depression glass cookie jar!

I left out the oxy clean and used the baking soda, laundry powder, and Borax.

I used the 3 bars of Fels-naptha. 1.00 each at walmart!

Put a bar of Dr. Brommers Lavender Castile soap in for the smell good factor.

And next time I'll try some Kirks Castile soap.  .99 a bar off the internet.

Mixed it all up in a 5 gallon bucket and I've used most of my first batch and have never looked back! So long Tide!!!

How to make a French Bed

People are often complaining how it's just too bad that the antique French linen sheets are too small to make a 21st century bed properly.

It's possible though. I'll show you in this picture 'how to', how I've done mine!

Every bed is different and has it's own challenge. My bed starts with being 1m80 x 2m00 (70.8" x 78.7") with a matress of 1m60 x 2m00 (63" x 78.7") and open.

So first thing I did, was planting my scissors into an antique linen sheet. Brenda forced me to say that it was a 'project sheet'. So I'll just say that to make her happy... 
There are lots of sheets that have so many tears and wears that it's just no longer possible to use them other than for projects and they are cheaper than perfect antique sheets. I turned one of those sheets into a custom bedskirt...


I didn't particularly liked the ceiling above the bed, therefore I put up curtains there. Nothing fancy. Simple cotton Ikea curtains that had been lying in my studio for several years. It's for covering up, anchor the bed into the space and adding a little more romance. And I sew some pillows for the head of the bed.

I covered the matress with a 'modern' white fitted sheet. Then I took a simple antique 'fil de lin' sheet without monogram. Fil de lin is the finer linen, not the extreme thick heavy weight one. I like the way that feels on my skin better than the other one. Might be a personal thing, but it feels more luxurious. This sheet I put across the bed ("length to width" so to speak). Just to get some drape on the side and cover up the hole in between my matrass and bed...

Of course now I've got way too much drape, for I made the bedskirt on the side of the bed as well...

I simply folded it back on both sides of the bed to show off my bedskirt.

Time to get the duvets on the bed. I've got two single person duvets in that wonderful duvet blue color. Way too nice color to hide in a duvet cover. So I fold them double and put them on top of the sheet.

And here it comes. The crème de la crème. The diamond amongst the Linen Bedsheets. A 19th century bedsheet that has been made on a 1m05 (41") loom, so it's only 2m (82") width (they are always two panels). With a wonderful hand embroidered, centered monogram. The really heavy weight linen sheet. All handmade. Indistructable. The sheet that is a slight bit more expensive, but is the centerpiece of a bed. The eyecatcher. The cream on the coffee. Or something like that.

I've put this wonderful sheet over the duvets and folded it back to the middle of the bed. I really want the monogram to stand out and not get lost by attention drawing pillowcases and such.

Now I'm in the luxurious position of owning a 2m x 2m (82" x 82") vintage French cotton white blanket that I topped over the sheet. But depending on the climate, an extra layer might not be necessary in every area.

And of course... A French bed cannot... I repeat... CANNOT go without a "traversin", a bolster. That is a basic French bed essential. They are still to be found everywhere. It's a common pillow. And isn't it romantic to use one pillow with your loved one?

Mine is fit into an antique simple crochet trimming decorated linen cover.

Then throw in some pillows. I don't like to take too much attention away from my monogram centerpiece, so I'm always going easy on the pillows. There's just one rule...
It is NOT allowed to use two of the same pillowcases. It's an antique French bed. That has been made with all unique (handmade) items. Having two of the same pillowcases just doesn't fit into that picture. 

To finish the bed off, I like to hang some beautiful panels on the bed. Either for their nice trimmings or for their extravagently beautiful monogram. Or just a 'simple' antique hand laced fichu.

Et voila. All done. Simple. Chic. Crispy clean. Inviting. My bed is made. 

It took me: 

- One thicker antique linen project sheet (not the extreme heavy weight one)
- One simple, non monogramed antique Fil de Lin Sheet (the fine linen)
- One terrific, wonderful, beautiful, antique top center monogramed heavy weight linen sheet

And a couple of hours to get the bedskirt and bedhead pillows done.

Next on my to do list... Curtains!

À plus, mes Amies!


Shared this with:

Boudoir of Paris, bed, sheet, linen, antique, french, france, paris, how to make a french bed, how to, white, cream, cotton, lace

Thursday, September 20, 2012

A nightgown is a nightgown is a nightgown. What?!?!?!

"Rose is a Rose is a Rose is a Rose", according to the famous quote from Gertrude Stein. I'm a rose addict, so every quote that has roses in it, is fine by me and has all my support.

Except for when people start to replace the word 'Rose' for things that I happen to love and collect. Or hoard, as some others tend to call it...

Like: "A Nightgown is a Nightgown is a Nightgown is a Nightgown."

Then I suddenly start screaming Tao-quotes like "The name that can be named is not the eternal name". For don't touch my Nightgowns.

The Holy Grail of Lingerie.
The very fine art of antique hand needlework and embroidery.

Our entire human history can be written by only looking at the development of our nightwear!

Sigh. Some people just don't understand.

Back in the 1800s women used to sew their nightgowns before getting married. They put all their effort in them and made them to last a lifetime. Even wearable during the entire pregnancy! There's a distinct difference between 'peasants nightgowns' and 'fancy lady's nightgowns' and they even had night blouses to wear over bloomers! It doesn't even need explaining, the pictures (from 180s to early 1900s) show for themselves...

And have a look at this early 20th Century Gem. A nightgown with a bed jacket. A Bed Jacket. That's right. Now isn't that the ultimate Chic?

And somehow, just somehow, in less than 100 years the name changed from 'nightgown' to 'nightdress' (already a little less chic) to 'nightie' or PJs.

Today? Instead of handsewing a beautiful nightgown that is a pleasure to wear both in and out of bed, most ladies I know wear an old t-shirt or nothing at all...

I'd say it's time to bring back tradition. At least at night. Let us dream in Style. Either in beautiful timeworn elegancy or modern day nightgowns.

But never, ever say to me that a Nightgown is a Nightgown, please. It hurts.

"A Nightgown by any other name would still be as sweet".
Gotta love Shakespeare! He knew how to appreciate the good things in life.

Time to go to bed. The way I was born, I need to learn how to let go...


Monday, September 17, 2012

French Teapots and Spiders

As usual, during coffee I was having my morning (her evening) conversation with Sacha...

She was showing me what she was listing today. Love these French prints! Why does she have all the good stuff! Yes, I'm whining here!

Look at this cute, cute enamel teapot!!


I was gracefully (slouching) reclining at my desk when this HUMONGOUS
wood spider came crawling across the top of my desk towards me.

I'll tangle with almost anything, I have bears and coyotes in my yard every night...

but spiders, and especially one as big as one of my cats???

(Brenda: known to exaggerate a teeny bit)

Oh man, I'm outta there!

And just in case you thought Sacha was the sweet one...

You can see how sympathetic she was!

        • Have you see all the comments on our blog???

        • I just had a spider as big as a tarantula come crawling across my desk!!!

      • Sacha Kay
        3 hours ago
        Sacha Kay
        • YIKES! Don't you have dogs and cats to capture creatures like that?

      • Brenda Cantrell
        3 hours ago
        Brenda Cantrell
        • Heck they would have been afraid! LAMO
        • SCARED ME!!

      • Sacha Kay
        3 hours ago
        Sacha Kay
        • Of course it scared you. What did you do with it?
      • Brenda Cantrell
        3 hours ago
        Brenda Cantrell
        • I chased it, it got away. I've moved to the couch!! Freaking out! LOL
        • Gotta go back in for my coffee...OMG...Do you think it's laying in wait???
      • Sacha Kay
        3 hours ago
        Sacha Kay
        • Ehm? Chase it?!?!?! LOL! You DID know where it was. Now it can get back to surprising you. LMAO!!! This is hilarious.

            • Try catching it with a glass / jar and piece of paper and release it outside. Or if you don't mind killing spiders: vacuum cleaner.

          • Brenda Cantrell
            3 hours ago
            Brenda Cantrell
            • Says you! LOL I've got to go back over there eventually!
            • I did! I had a can and paper! It LEAPED behind the desk!

          • Sacha Kay
            3 hours ago
            Sacha Kay
            • I'm not afraid of spiders. I always catch and release them. Except for the ones that come with 1,000s. Those I vacuum.

          • Brenda Cantrell
            3 hours ago
            Brenda Cantrell
            • And me screaming like a girl.

          • Sacha Kay
            3 hours ago
            Sacha Kay
            • LOL!!! Too bad you didn't have your webcam on.

          • Brenda Cantrell
            3 hours ago
            Brenda Cantrell
            • I was just saying...thank god she couldn't see that!!!
            • I'm not afraid of ANYTHING BUT SPIDERS!!! Give me the freaking heebie jeebies.

                • Why? You're too big for them to eat you.


              • Brenda Cantrell
                3 hours ago
                Brenda Cantrell
                • The dogs and cars are asleep on the couch while I'm being eaten by a gigantic spider!

              • Sacha Kay
                3 hours ago
                Sacha Kay
                • I think I would have died if I had seen you with that spider. OMG! I'm already almost dying by thinking of it. I'm almost wetting my pants here.

              • Brenda Cantrell
                3 hours ago
                Brenda Cantrell
                • And there's no proof of that.
                • that they can't eat me...

        • Who can I call if you're not here tomorrow at this time of day? In order to check if you haven't gotten eaten by a spider. LOL!!!!

      • Brenda Cantrell
        3 hours ago
        Brenda Cantrell
        • LOL Just send the ambulance for what's left of my spider eaten body.
        • It's just a wood spider. Not dangerous. they always try to come inside when fall gets here. They are just HUGE.
      • Sacha Kay
        3 hours ago
        Sacha Kay
        • Ohw. Okay. I will. Keep your webcam on when you go to sleep. Maybe it just crawls inside your mouth and you won't ever know that it's living in your stomach if you don't film it. LMAO!!!

      • Brenda Cantrell
        3 hours ago
        Brenda Cantrell