Thursday, June 30, 2011

Blog Profile: Craft Buds

Today we have the opportunity to meet Lindsay of Craft Buds Blog, which focuses on the business side of having a handmade shop.  Lindsay and her friend collaborator, Mary, include craft tutorials, blogging tips and fresh ideas for promoting and running your handmade business.

Together they somehow manage three blogs: Craft Buds, Lindsay Sews, and Bugglebee.  Imagine all the knowledge these lovely ladies possess!  Here's one opportunity to glean some of that knowledge.

1. Craft Buds is a huge, very active blog.  Explain your process for finding information and articles.

Craft Buds is a collaboration between me and my friend Mary. We each have areas we like to focus on each week, which typically means we'll post one craft tutorial (Mary), a roundup of free patterns (Mary), a handmade business article (Lindsay), the fresh picks for the week (another roundup of notable crafts, from Lindsay), and we share the duties when it comes to hosting giveaways.

A huge source of finding inspiration is just reading other blogs! I subscribe to at least 400 craft blogs, mostly sewing or quilting related, and I scroll through them every day to "clear out my reader." I also visit linky parties ( throughout the week, so I find a lot of ideas there. Mary is also always passing along cool things she finds. I also keep the weekly giveaways page ( up to date by adding any fun giveaways I find while sifting through my reader! Flickr and Pinterest are other ways I search for fresh content, but Google Reader is my number one tool.

2.  Where did you learn the many business tips that you print, and how helpful do you think they've been for your readers?

All different ways. For instance, I'd been reading about effective ways to use Twitter ( to market your business, and adapted those tips to the handmade world in a way that I found helpful. Mary told me she learned some things from my article, so I think it was helpful! Some of the other topics were just instinctual. Since I read so many blogs, participate in linky parties, and host a lot of blog giveaways, I created some tips on each business or blogging topic, trying to give a complete overview for beginners to everyone else (

3. What is the most time-consuming part of running a handmade business?  How can those of us in the business save ourselves some of that time?
According to some of our featured crafters (, promoting their business through updating their online store is the hardest and most time-consuming part of running their business. Coming in a close second is promoting their Etsy shop or handmade goods through social media. It takes time to develop a following for your brand, but it's really just about being yourself and starting relationships with others. And then you actually have to find time to create and balance the business with your family life, which can be quite the task! 

4.  Your partnership obviously works well for you.  How did you and Mary meet and become partners in the blogosphere?

Mary and I actually live near each other, went to the same college, and are a part of the same church! But we didn't know we really shared the love of crafting and blogging until we'd both launched our own sewing blogs, Lindsay Sews ( and Bugglebee ( I couldn't sleep one night, because I was thinking that we should go into craft blogging, writing, and designing together. (Since Mary is a graphic designer and I'm a writer/editor, we've talked about this partnership before.) I wrote Mary the longest e-mail ever with my ideas, and she loved it. We started Craft Buds this March, and have focused on creating regular features and meeting other people in the blogging community! It's been a great learning experience, and we're blown away by our awesome readers.

5. What other interests do the two of you share?  

Oddly enough, we both live in historic homes in different areas of our town, built before 1900. 

6. What is the one, most important, thing that others in the handmade biz do to grow their business?

Create and maintain a blog with great photography of your crafts. Visit other people's blogs and leave meaningful comments--don't just try to promote yourself. Learn to share space in the online crafting community, because there's enough room for everyone!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

There and back again

Do you remember my saying that I was finished with the canning?  I think I wrote it.  Sure, it's right here!  Well, I was wrong, dang it!  Little did I know that a peck of peaches would be coming my way.  How much is a peck, you ask.....two gallons, but I'm estimating.  When you have to peel the peaches, it's about two and a half hours of your sewing time.  Am I complaining?  Absolutely, surely not!  I'm just letting you know that if you want to put up a peck of peaches, you'll need an afternoon.  
These darlings are absolutely beautiful.  In about three minutes the entire house smelled like summer sweetness, and I was elbow deep with the paring knife.  None of that playing around with green stuff, these little peaches are tree ripened and picked firm with just a hint of squish.  Since my favorite fruit of all time is peaches, you can imagine how much I smiled when they arrived.  
Peel, peel, peel and before you know it, they look like this.  The trick to peeling the firmer ones is to boil water in a heavy saucepan and drop them in for a minute or so.  The skin doesn't slide off the way it does for tomatoes, but it works in much the same way and peeling is a breeze.  Which is good when you have gallons to put up.       

So what to do with them then?  Well, I couldn't remember what we did when I was a little girl.  I remembered peeling peaches on Ma-ma's back porch, but I'm pretty sure she shooed us toward the yard when she started handled the hot jars.  At any rate, I decided to give it my best and figure it out on my own.  First I stuffed as many peaches as I possibly could into the hot pints, then I shoved a few more of the softer ones in.  They turned to juice in my fingers but I wanted to fill in the air spaces.  I added only 1/8 cup of sugar with an 1/8 cup of Splenda to take care of the diabetics in the family.  Wipe down the tops to clean off the sugars and add the lids and rings.

Then I dropped the jars into the pressure cooker and covered them with water.  Fifteen minutes of a boiling hot water bath and they were ready to cool on a dishtowel.  I just love the sound of canning jars when the seal pops down.  It's a sound from my youth that means the goods are done.  I can't wait to open a jar and bake up a pan of peach cobbler.  I could probably eat an entire pan of peach cobbler by myself, but I'll try to share with the family.

You may think I'm exaggerating I'm not.  A few years ago one of our sons and his wife were stationed at Robbins Air Force Base in Georgia.  We made several trips to visit them and somehow managed to arrive at the peak of peach season a few of those times.  On the first of those summer trips, we went to a peach farm to pick our own.  That didn't happen, but we left with bellies full of peach ice cream and a box of peaches.  I baked a huge pan of my homemade peach cobbler which we shared with neighbors.  The rest of the peaches were loaded into the back seat of the truck.  The idea was that it was too hot in the back.  Every couple of minutes I offered Richard a peach, which he politely refused.  I'd get one for myself and just savor every taste.  When we arrived in Louisiana, there were no peaches left.  I'd eaten every one!  Richard just knew I'd be sick from eating so many peaches, but it never fazed me.  After that, when we drove to Georgia, we picked up two boxes of for my drive home and one for everyone else!

I won't have you thinking that this is the best recipe for canning peaches.  I have no idea yet whether they will be good.  Instead, try this recipe from the Georgia peach board.  You might be much safer!  They have recipes as well, such as this Mini Peach Cheesecakes recipe.  

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Quilty Tuesday

Today started out pretty agreeable since I finally got a chance to do some serious work on the guild quilt.  I'm not finished, of course, but I'm getting close.  Since I am responsible for the quilting only, there's no squaring up or binding to worry with.  Just finish the quilting and deliver it to the next person.  Easy enough, right?

Not that you can see the quilting in this photo, but I chose to quilt the red blocks in a feather wreath design that goes from corner to corner so that it supports the seams.

On the inside of the wreath I dropped in some feathers and a few scrolls that help to fill in the center.  This works quite well since a few of the fabrics have scroll designs in them.

The green posed a problem for me because of its shape.  I wasn't sure how I'd fill out the points but I liked the idea of including Christmas designs.  Again I went to the fabrics for ideas and the border fabric has some beautiful poinsettias.  I used my trusty white board to mimic the design.  

As usual, my drawing was pretty crude, but the quilting outcome isn't so bad.  You may be able to see the small pointy circles that represent the stamens and the two or three leaf sizes of the poinsettia flowers.  

While that worked quite well for the complete blocks,  I didn't think it would look very good in the half blocks.  Another look at the fabrics and I found some holly berry and leaves, which are pretty easy to mimic even on the white board.

I finished everything off with a small stipple in the yellow.  Otherwise, the yellow popped up in a most unruly manner and just looked silly.  The tight design helped to hold it down and allowed me to get very close to the seams, which I wanted to do since some of those seams were a little loosely stitched.

A couple of hours of sewing tomorrow should finish up the quilt and I'll deliver it on Thursday.  Just in time, too, because today the guild newslettter arrived in the mail along with the raffle tickets for this fundraiser quilt.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Just how crazy can I be?

As a member of the Etsy Blog Team, I have access to many other team members and their expertise.  A few weeks ago someone started a listing of blogs and asked that each person who added his/her blog url also copy and paste the previous urls.  Well, I decided to take a look at each of those blogs.  Single spaced, it's about three a lot of blogs.  I'm about halfway.  

But you know, I have to be just a little more kooky.....I had to put them in alphabetical order.  Yes, that's how I roll.  I may not dust the furniture, but the pantry looks great...behind closed doors.  Call it OCD tendencies if you must, but I think I'm just a little crazy in a kooky kind of way.  

So, it's not enough to actually open and read each blog, I am doing it in abc order.  Thank goodness, I'm not so crazy that I'm making myself comment on each blog.  That would probably be going a little too far!  

So do I have anything of real interest to post tonight?  Not really.  I cleaned house and worked on the guild quilt but there are no photos to show you just yet.  I am hopeful that I'll finish tomorrow....and that will be possible only if Rich wakes up in a better mood tomorrow.  He's feeling better, but he's bored out of his mind and I guess I'm the big show.  Newsflash: my favorite part of the day is when I get to cross over to the studio and lose myself in some stitches!  I guess he just needs to come watch me stitch on the guild quilt, but then, that would be as interesting as some of the movies he's been watching since the surgery.  

Here's a question that might put you in the same kooky category as I'm in: what do you do that's just a little off kilter to the rest of the world?

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Antique Rocker

Am I not one lucky girl?  My in-laws have been visiting us daily to check on Richard's progress from surgery. They generally stay for an hour or so, and we have a wonderful visit.  Naturally, with a week and a half behind us, we've had lots of time to catch up with the family and even time to chat about almost everything we can think of.  At some point we began talking about the many antique tools they have, and I told them about my hopes of finding an old sewing rocker, one without arms.

Low and behold, they had exactly such a rocker.  My mother-in-law picked it up at an estate sale about 20 years ago.  I had no idea that she had found such a beautiful rocker, although I was very aware of their love of wooden rockers.  They have a few, although it's not really a collection because rockers take up too much space.  Who would have guessed?

It turns out that neither of them knew this rocker is a sewing rocker.  She simply bought it because it was unusual and old.

Here's the best part: they delivered it to me the very next day.  They decided that since I really appreciate antiques and want such a rocker that I should get it.  Now isn't that sweet?  They have never used it....which is one reason that I had no knowledge of its existence.

It's in pretty good shape.  There is a split on the seat that someone tried to repair once.  But that split is right in a seam where two pieces of wood were glued at one time to make the seat wide enough.  My darling husband has promised to repair it correctly when he is well again.  In the meantime, it sits in my studio waiting for the repair and for new seat cushions.  I intend to use it while doing handwork and when people come into the studio for a visit.

I just wish my mom were still alive to tell her.  She would be so very happy for me.  She loved antique furniture, especially useful pieces of furniture.

I've thanked my in-laws several times for the rocker, but I really want to do something nice for them.  I'm thinking that they'd like a sofa quilt, so it will go on my to do list.  Maybe I can even have one made by Christmas.  Wouldn't that make a nice gift?

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Summer Goodies and Guild Quilting

These pretty jars are likely the last ones of this summer.  I canned them this week and am quite happy to say that I won't be going in the okra again very soon.  Not that the okra are  finished, of course, they would keep producing until the first frost if I continued to pick them two or three times weekly.  But I have no plans to continue.  We have enough in the freezer and pickled in jars for this year at least.
 I have to admit, however, that they sure look nice.  I was able to put up some more tomatoes, this time they are canned with Italian seasonings so that when I put them in spaghetti sauce or use them for pizza, they will already have some of the seasonings I would normally add. Also the tomatoes will taste better if we choose to eat them from the jar.  These were canned whole or cut into large chunks because I have the feeling that we'll eat most of them this way.

Two pints have pickled sweet peppers in them.  I don't eat banana peppers unless they are cooked into something like a gravy, but some of my boys love them.  So I decided to try a few pints.  They look good, and hopefully they'll taste as good.

At a guild meeting of the Louisiana Cotton Quilters Guild a few months ago, we voted to make a Christmas themed quilt to raffle as a fundraiser.  Guild members met a few times to paper piece the quilt blocks, then one or two members worked on sewing the blocks together.  It's a beautiful quilt top.  Because I knew I'd be unable to met to either piece the blocks or put them together, I decided to offer to quilt it.

 At our June meeting, we voted again to allow me to quilt it.  There was quite a lively discussion about whether we should hand quilt it, but there's already a quilt planned for hand quilting.  That one is to raise money for the Cottonport Museum.  In the end, the quilt found it's way to my studio.  I loaded it onto the Innova before I realized that I hadn't taken a photo.  So here's a photo of a section of the top.  It's more difficult to see, of course, but you can see that the colors are very Christmasy in shades of red and green and a golden yellow.  I promise more photos later.  I actually took several photos but they are even worse than this one!  I'm such a horrid photographer!

 In the darkest green and in the yellow there's a scroll or vine motif, which I like to do, so I'm pretty sure I'll use that somewhere in the quilting.  I've already decided to quilt a wreath design in the red square.  I'm just not sure what I want to do with that green.  It's an odd shape and I need to fill the quilt with as much quilting as I can.  Because so many different people worked on the piecing, there are some sections that are a bit loose and I think that dense quilting will resolve some of the issues that come with loose stitches.  Any suggestions for a good, dense quilting motif that is maybe just a little Christmas?  I sure could use some help with this!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Work shirt redo

My middle son owns a home repair company and wears khaki work shirts. After he checked into the cost of having the shirts embroidered, he came to me.  No surprise there.  He was trying to save me the work.  Instead I get to save him the money.  Isn't that the way it goes with children?

 He still purchases the shirts but then he usually drops them off for me to add his logo.

The first time he dropped off shirts, I had to build a logo, which was easy enough to do in my embroidery software.  He didn't want anything fancy and I finally got him to understand that anything more than I was able to do would cost him money.

In the end we compromised and he was satisfied.  I copied and pasted the logo several times so that now when I embroider it, several logos are embroidered on the same piece of fabric.  I cut them apart and stitch them onto the shirts just above the pocket.   Once I finished the first shirt and return it to him for approval, I embroidered about 20 logos and put them aside in the studio.  Now all I have to do when he comes in with more shirts is to stitch on the logo.

Not too bad, actually.  He's happy and it's much easier to stitch on a patch logo than to embroider it onto the shirt.  I'm not very good at getting embroidery centered and even.  My depth perception is just too wonky.

It works for us and I don't mind doing such little things for the kids.  But then, most mothers wouldn't.

What are some of the little things that you do for your child or children that is maybe a little out of the ordinary?

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The big reveal.......And the winner is

Congratulations to Kelsey!!!
She won three fleur de lis appliques and a $44 gift certificate from my Fleur de Lis Quilts Etsy Shop.
I've sent her an email to let her know she's won.  
Please visit her Etsy shop or blog and congratulate her or leave her a note in comments.

and now for 
Remember, I told you not to get too excited.  The paint is still in the cans! Regardless, I've been wanting to show you around the studio.  Richard worked so hard to get it finished before going in for surgery, and I just can't wait till I get to the painting and, of course, picking up and putting away all the stuff.  So, here's the deal:  I'll show you the photos, but you'll somehow manage not to see all the stuff piled up and all the construction dust, and all the unfinished projects lying around.  There's even some tools still waiting for me haul to Rich's shed.  You won't see those either, right?

Let's start in the old part of the studio.  This wall is the one that faced out toward the driveway.  When we removed the wall, I had Rich leave this section.  I will put in a new bulletin board to use for inspiration and have moved the Accuquilt cutter there.  On either side of the wall there is a large opening to the new part of the studio.   
The back side of the wall will have low book shelves for all of my quilting books.  Above the book shelves, I plan to display medium size and baby quilts.  
Looking into the addition from the right side of that wall, you can see the long arm.  It takes up almost half of the addition, but then it is the reason Rich wanted so badly to add on, so I guess it can take up all the space it needs.

Looking through the other open into the addition, you can see the new door and two of the windows.  I had planned to add a seating area here with just a few chairs and my dad's old trunk for a coffee table, but now that I've put Ma-ma's quilt stand there, I really like having it near the windows.  I guess I'll have to think about it some more.  What do you think--the quilt stand or a seating area?

This is the addition from the corner of that opening.  Here you can see that the long arm is near two more windows.  These are really big windows for lots of natural light.  That poor light bulb is going to be changed once Rich is well.  We just ran out of time and I won't attempt to connect anything electrical--I have a healthy fear of being zapped!

Back into the older part of the studio where we had the long arm, we've added these salvaged cabinets.  Rich did lots of work on them after he put them in to dress them up a bit.  I haven't decided what I want to put in the glass doors.  

I'm afraid my stash is too big to put all of the fabric in and I'm so messy that it will end being an disorganized, chaotic mess rather than a display that inspires me.  Isn't the cabinet pretty though?  This is getting to be difficult, I really don't know what to put in here.

 And the final picture is of the bottom of the cabinet.  I plan to make this into my desk.  I've already stored some of my office supplies on one side.  On the other side I will keep the binders filled with patterns, templates and articles that I clip out of magazines or create on my own.  

Congratulations again to Kelsey and thank you to those of you who participated in the giveaway.  The one surprise that I didn't expect is that we now have 50 followers to the blog.  How lovely that just as we're wrapping up the one year anniversary of my Etsy shop, we gain our 50th follower!  Thank you to everyone!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011


Yes, finally, it rained today.  Not enough yet, but a really good start.  The plants that have survived thus far look so clean and fresh.  That would not be the squash or green beans.  In fact, I've begun pulling the green beans out and feeding them to the goats.    Hopefully the cucumbers will make a few more cause there are still some tomatoes and I like lots of different veggies in my salad.

Take a look at what I worked on today.  It will be a pillow something like the one I made a few weeks ago.  Remember this one?  

I plan to quilt it first then make it into a pillow.  I haven't decided on the quilting motif.  The fabric has a distinct Asian influence, so I want to do a little more research before I quilt it.

I love the red and black colors.  In fact, it's the colors that inspired me to choose the fabric from the stash.  

I like the look so much that I decided to play with it a little more and ended up making something I've been toying with for a while.

A small quilt for AAQI!  Yes, I went ahead and made one.  I know, Jenclair and I have said we'd start at the beginning of July, but I just needed to see what we are in for.  Turns out that it takes only an hour or so.  Of course, that depends very much on how difficult the pattern is, but something as simple as this one took me about an hour and a half from cutting to quilting to binding.

A few strips and a circle cut from the focus fabric added to coordinating solids all pieced together in any haphazard way.  I tried to mimic the writing on the focus fabric, but there's no way I'm good enough for that.

Regardless, I like the outcome and hope that it will fetch a few dollars for AAQI.  Every little amount helps when it is added to the rest.  

I have lofty goals of making a few AAQI quilts this summer, but I can't commit myself to more than one or two.  Although Richard is healing well, his surgery has taken a toll on me.  I'm exhausted most of the time.  It's funny how much he did that I didn't appreciate before.  Of course, now that I'm doing everything he did and everything I normally do, I'm feeling the pain.  I haven't even begun painting the studio or putting things away.  My "big reveal" will be more of a "there, that's it."  Not a lot of fanfare, I'm afraid.

One more day!  Yep, that's all that's left for you to get in on the giveaway! 
Follow me and leave a comment,
that's all that's required.  

Monday, June 20, 2011

Volcie and Wiltz

As part of our anniversary celebration, I'd like to introduce you to another quilter--one who I knew from my birth until her death in 1992.  She was my grandmother, Volcie Mary Couvillion Lacombe, and I admired every aspect about her and her life.  I loved her dearly and now, almost 20 years after her death, I still miss her and think of her often, especially when quilting.

One of my earliest memories is of playing under the quilts that hung from the ceiling at Ma-ma and Pa-pa's house.  Elderly aunts and friends sitting in every seat around the quilt, needle in hand, talking, gossiping, and laughing at their lewd jokes, of which naturally I had no understanding.  By no understanding, I mean I had no understanding of any of it: they spoke in a very fast French dialect and though I knew a few words, I was completely clueless.

My grandfather, Wiltz, attached the quilt to the frame and then hung the frame on chains that eventually reached the hooks already screwed into the beaded-board ceiling.  The single light with the pink glass globe gave the only light, other than the little light that came in through the windows.  How these ladies saw well enough to make any stitches, I still do not understand.  Those stitches were perfect, small and tight and straight.  But then  how could they be anything but perfect?  There had been lifetimes of practice.

Crawling from the front door to the opening that lead to the kitchen was an interesting journey of smelly feet, varicose veined legs, and homemade cotton "step-ins" as Pa-pa called panties.  These women wore cotton dresses that they hiked up to their thighs so that they could sit comfortably with legs splayed in all directions.  How or why we young ones played under the quilt, I have not idea, but we did.  The quilt made a fabulous tent and although we were certainly underfoot, we were probably less problematic than when we played in the kitchen.

These memories of Volcie and Wiltz and all the aunts and great-aunts and cousins are among my most cherished memories and I pray that I never forget them.  How could my mom have known then, before Alzheimer's forced her to forget everything quilt related, that documenting one of my grandmother's quilts would become a source of great pride for me?  Below is a copy of the documentation information on the quilt index which is the work of The Alliance for American Quilts.

Can you figure out what this neat little wooden item is?  I'll post more info on it in the next few days.  Until then, I'd be interested in knowing what you think it is.

Two days till the giveaway!  Better get your chance in by following my blog and leaving a comment.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Father's Day and AAQI

Jenclair of Bayou Quilts (& Dolls) and I have been discussing the possibility of working together to help AAQI. She writes on her blog, "I'm seriously thinking about what I want to do for AAQI.  I've been visiting with Mary (Fleur de Lis Quilts) and Michele (Heart & Hands) about this.  I've said I wanted to make a donation quilt for a long time...." 

So, hopefully in a few days we'll have some more information for you.  In the meantime, think about whether you'd like to join us in creating a small quilt to send to AAQI.  They will auction these quilts to raise money for Alzheimer's research.  If you would like to read more about AAQI, click on the button to do directly to their website.  I've decided that I will definitely make at least one quilt in memory of my mom.  I haven't decided on a specific design yet, but will in the next few days and post the information so you will know any plans.

Pixelista DesignFinally, I redesigned my blog background.  In fact, I spent most of this evening doing exactly that. I've been chatting with Laura of Recycle Room about some of the things we've been able to figure out on blogger.  She sent me information on Making Cute Blogs a website that has great tutorials on improving and personalizing your blog.  After reading the tutorial a few times, I was able to make quite a few changes.  I definitely recommend it if you're interested in learning more about blogging and html codes.  Here an interesting sidebar: I not only designed and colored the new background, I also wrote some of the html code to make it a little easier to see the text on this page.  Grant it, I only wrote things like, "background: white;" for the most part, but still, it's a start.  

Please tell me how you like the new look.....and don't worry about making suggestions!  I can take it and I'm having enough fun that if you tell me what changes will help, I'll give it a try.  Leave a comment, by all means!

Three days till the winner of the giveaway is chosen!  If you haven't become a follower yet, now is the best time to do so.  

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Etsy Shop Profile: Recycle Room

Vintage Avon Cape Cod candlesticks candle holders cranberryI'd like to introduce you to Recycle Room Etsy Shop and Daydreams and Dust Bunnies blogger.  This is my first profile, but I'm really excited about getting to know this shop owner and regular blogger for the Etsy Blog Team.  

Imagine finding lovely little items and turning them into something else.  For example, in today's post she explains how she took this cute little chair and turned it into yard art.  Now isn't this just the cutest?  Makes me wish it weren't so hot here.  

Of course, in Washington state, it's probably in the 60's.  Even I could get outside in that weather!

There are many adorable items in her shop.  One of the questions I asked her was what is her favorite item right now.  She responded by saying that it's hard to choose just one.  Well, I have no problem choosing one.

Vintage bowl  burgundy rose design gold rimThis rose plate is definitely on the top of my list.  I collect dishes with roses on them, so it would be perfect for my collection.  If I could limit it to just one, though....of course I can't!  Take a look at all of the really beautiful items she has.  Her Etsy shop can be found here.

Home or patio side table plant stand sculpture glass porcelain ceramic blue and white blueberry designWhere/when did you learn to recycle? I think it was when I joined a craft club in the early 1960's. We made crafts from materials such as metal cans, fabric to name a few and made jewelry from poured resin with found objects inbedded. Lots of other projects also, but I can't remember all of them. Five years ago one of my former neighbors showed me a necklace that I had made for her with a lock of her hair embedded in it. She was in the first or second grade at the time.
Glass garden sculpture totem blue unique one of a kindDo you ever re-purpose items? In what ways? Yes. I use glassware, porcelain, ceramic and metal found objects for garden art. I've used eating utensils for plant stakes and wood scraps for garden signs. I have redecorated planters from garage sales; also nursery pots. There's so much more I would like to do, but where I see art my hubby sees junk. 
Besides the obvious, why do you think it important that we recycle? It's so much fun to look at an object and see art rather than junk.  Teapot garden sculpture blue and yellow totem
What is a favorite item in your Etsy shop? That's a hard one. Right now I think it's the orange swan. It's reserved for a buyer at this point. I also like the garden man and the milk glass fruit bowl. The garden people have been very popular locally. I need to get some more made. I have one nearly finished that I'll be listing soon.  Teapot garden sculpture blue and yellow totem
Do you give recycled/salvaged gifts? How do you present them? Definitely. Sometimes a friend will find a new garden art piece in her yard or on her deck. I put one in the yard next door last summer. She didn't have a clue where it came from until my husband told her. Weird! They're all over my flower beds. 

To get to know more about Recycle Room, go to her blog here.
Or leave a comment on this post.  I'll make sure she knows about it.
Glass garden flower stake totem sculpture