I spy

I spy a lawn party

1. hummingbird pillow cover by nestables
2. into the clover flat notes by slg designs
3. drop of light necklace by apostrophie
4. glass and green print by kathy panton
5. chaumont sleeveless linen dress by tortilla girl
6. oslo II purse by ika bags
7. green gingham knot necklace by wonder wonder
8. retro two-piece by felice

have a lovely day, Amy
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july giveaway by LouLouBell

Oh, what a lovely surprise this week! Lyndsay of LouLouBell has offered one of her lovely woodgrain pouches to a lucky winner! The bags I carry around are generally huge, so I fill a little pouch like this with my lipstick and mints and tuck it inside so they're always much easier to find in the abyss. Wouldn't this sweet number be perfect for organizing your things and toting them around this fall?


How to win?
Tell us your name and how to contact you (include an email addy or etsy shop name) in the comments below and tell Lyndsay which item in her shop is your favorite.
And you can earn an extra entry if you do any of the following (just let us know in the comments below):
Follow this blog
Follow the LouLouBell blog
Follow the b-line on twitter
Follow LouLouBell on twitter
Tweet this giveaway
Blog about this giveaway

This contest will end at 11:59 pm EDT on Monday, 3 August and the winner will be announced on Tuesday, 4 August.
Good luck!
have a lovely day, Amy
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window shopping: sanchia playfair

window shopping
I'm just loving the beautiful striped goodies in Sanchia Playfair, aren't you? And gorgeous photography (and models) as well! Lovely picks, clockwise from top left: striped silk top, poncho, striped summer dress, pink striped silk top.
have a lovely day, Amy
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what's cooking: fruit pizza

Mmmm! I just love fruit pizza. Even though I'm a chocolate-lover, I always dig a slice of this yummy dessert, as I was reminded when my mom served this up a few weeks ago. Hope you love it too!



fruit pizza
1 tube refrigerator sugar cookie dough
8 0z. cream cheese
1 small container Cool Whip
Fruit: strawberries, blueberries, peaches, bananas, blackberries, mandarin oranges or whatever you choose

Make orange sauce first (see below), so it has time to cool before you need it! Slice cookie dough in 1/8 inch slices and arrange on lightly greased pan (pizza pan or jelly roll, or cookie sheet). Press together to seal. Bake for 10-12 minutes at 375 degrees. Let cool.

Mix Cool Whip and cream cheese together and spread evenly over crust. Arrange fruit in any pattern you choose-- usually starting at the outer edge. Spoon Orange Sauce over pizza. Cut and serve.

Orange Sauce:
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup orange juice
1 Tablespoon cornstarch
dash of salt
1/2 cup water
2 Tablespoons lemon juice

Combine sugar, salt and cornstarch in pan. Add liquid gradually. Cook over med. heat, stirring constantly until thick. Boil 1 minute. Remove from heat. Cool.

This makes such a pretty dessert for any summer picnic or potluck. And you could easily lighten things up by using lite cream cheese and Cool Whip. Enjoy!

have a lovely day, Amy
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the way I see it

Is it still July? In many ways, this month feels at least a year long. In others, I can't believe it's almost August already. Despite the mild summer we've been enjoying, I'm starting to feel the tug of fall, with its cool, dry breezes and golden sunny days. But I'm not the slightest bit ready for all the work that comes with it.

trade
trade

stop here
stop here

quitting time
quitting time

I got bangs
I got bangs

fanfare
fanfare

both sides now
both sides now

exposed
exposed
have a lovely day, Amy
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wise words

queen anne's lace
Weeds are flowers too, once you get to know them.
A.A. Milne

have a lovely day, Amy
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I spy

I spy
1. strolling the high street looking for sweets print by in love and war
2. emerald and denim purse by shelby healey
3. leaves tote by pat & cake
4. fragile print by the Photo zoo
5. sleeveless ruffle tank by betsy b design
6. pod necklace by una odd
7. she dreamed of being a mermaid earrings by jennifer morris beads
8. anais tia tank top by zorya
have a lovely day, Amy
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how do you do? {Maria of kjoo}

how do you do maria kjoo
Just wait to you meet the lovely woman in today's hot seat! Actually, you may know her already, or at least her textile jewelry. She's Maria of the fantasic shop, kjoo, on etsy. Maria's creations always grab my eye whenever I see them in treasuries, gift guides, or the front page. And is it any wonder? GORGEOUS! So, imagine my delight when Maria agreed to have a little "chat" and answer my nosey questions.

Thanks for joining me today, Maria. Let's start with the simple stuff. Tell us a little about you and your family.
My name is Maria João Ribeiro, I live in Palmela, Portugal in a 100 years old house, with my husband my cats rita and artur and the newest member of the family eva (the dog).

Tell us a little bit about how you got started. What made you start your craft? Can you remember the first piece of jewelry you made? Did you have any formal training?
I like to create "things" with my hands since I remember. In about tree years ago when finished my degree in Graphic Design was looking for something to do professionally along with some commissioned works on the graphic design area. I came across the handmade felt in the hut up website and thought this was the perfect material for me. I always loved fabrics and textiles in general, but my approach to this medium was always more like a sculptor then a fashion designer, so the results was not as satisfactory as I expected. With the artesian felt is totally different. After the basics skills have been learned the fun of creating with total freedom begin. The crochet came as a complement to felt, my grandmother tough me the basic skills when I was a child and I rediscover it to join it with felt 3 years ago. Ever since its been a continuously learning and experimenting different combinations. This was the first bracelet I made in felt.

What material or equipment would you be lost without?
My wools threads and crochet hook. I carry some always around.

Night owl or early bird? At what time of the day (or night) are you most creative?
I am more creative at night. Usually in the morning I am good executing things that I have organized late the day after. My creativity becomes more alive while the hours of the day pass by...


How did you come up with the name of your business?
The name kjoo (pronounced as "Key Djoo") was born accidentally.When testing some type lettering for a graphic design work. I typed some random letters and realize that I like the "shapes" of letters together, google it, and did not find anything about this word -kjoo-. So though it was a good name, small and pretty. I have been told that it means -today- in Japanese but still not sure.

Do you buy handmade? If so, what are the top three items on your wish list right now?
Yes. At the moment, there are some renovations going on in my house, so there are an extensive list of illustrations to color up the walls.
I will to buy an original illustration from Jenny I am planning on ordering a pastel portrait of me and my husband, to hang in my living room.
Something like this. (...oh, I LOVE that!)

One or two illustrations from Matte Stephens, I just didn´t figure it out which ones I am going to purchase, since I love most of them.

and finally I need a ring from Colleen Baran. (that's beautiful!)

I'd love to hear a little about you as a child. When you were younger, who did you dream of being?
I dreamt of being a Fashion designer, painter, illustrator, sculptor, or something related with creating things, with my hands. Not so often, a story tailor, scientist, astronaut.

What do you love to do when your not working on your business?
I love to travel, and do it as much as I can. Long walks with my husband and eva, petting my 2 cats...

I've noticed that many creative-types love learning new skills. Is there a new craft would you love to learn?
There are several new crafts I would like to learn, but in a short time period I would like to learn how to knit properly.

And finally, when you head out the door, what do you take with you? Name five things in your handbag.
Apart from the keys and the wallet:
hand moisturizer
iphone
crochet hook and thread
sunglasses
blush

Maria, thanks again for joining me today. I just loved reading more about you and how you do what you do!
have a lovely day, Amy
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window shopping: Kristin Perkins Glass Jewelry

window shopping: kristin perkins
Last Saturday, I spent the entire day selling my wares at the Shadow Art Fair in Ypsilanti, MI. It was a blast! Not only did I enjoy a successful day, but I saw so many great things and met some wonderful people. And Kristin Perkins was one of my favorites. Her glass jewelry is so colorful and vibrant, it practically glowed. I was drawn like a moth to the flame. Isn't her work lovely? Here are just four pieces from her etsy shop (clockwise from top left): stem necklace in tangerine and oxidized sterling silver, leaf earrings in green, long block earrings in gray, red, and turquoise, and circle ring in pink and green.
have a lovely day, Amy
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what's cooking: Brazilian stew

What? On a Tuesday? (Yep, it's Tuesday.) With classes starting soon, I've decided to reorganize my blog posts a bit to keep my schedule manageable. So, starting today, "what's cooking" and "let's make" will appear on alternate Tuesdays. And we'll start window shopping on Wednesdays. Giveaways will still start on Thursdays and I spy will appear on Fridays as usual. I just need to take the weekends off so I can catch up! But enough about calenders, let's talk about food!

I love soups and stews. Anything in a bowl, really. But I don't normally eat much soup in the summer. For this stew, I'll make an exception. Hearty and satisfying, with a little spice and a bucketload of flavor. Oh, and healthful. So healthful, I just had to add a few slices of fried plaintains so as not to shock the system. :)

brazilian stew

{brazilian stew}
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
1 large red bell pepper, diced
2 (14.5 ounce) cans diced tomatoes with juice
1 jalepeno pepper, diced
1 1/2 cups water
2 (16 ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
1 mango - peeled, seeded and diced
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat, and cook the onion until tender. Stir in garlic, and cook for another minute or so, then mix in the sweet potatoes, bell pepper, tomatoes with juice, jalepeno, and water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer 15 minutes, until sweet potatoes are tender.

Stir the beans into the pot, and cook uncovered until heated through. Mix in the mango and half of the cilantro. Serve in individual bowls and top with fresh cilantro. Dig in and enjoy!
have a lovely day, Amy
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the way I see it

This summer has had its ups and downs. I hardly know whether I'm coming or going. Good thing I've got this little journal going to document our days...

here is the church
here is the church

love note
love note

limelight
limelight

frazzled
frazzled

burst
burst

please hold
please hold

beachy
beachy
have a lovely day, Amy
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heads up!

I've just got to let you know about a great blog, called Luphia Loves. Chock full of gorgeous photos of inspired fashion and decor. I think you'll love it, if you don't already know about it. Have a visit!

And while you're there, you can enter this contest to win a $22 voucher to the b-line! Contest ends next Saturday, and there are several chances to enter. Good luck!
have a lovely day, Amy
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wise words

away
To see the Summer Sky
Is Poetry, though never in a Book it lie -
True Poems flee.

~Emily Dickinson

have a lovely day, Amy
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what's cooking: thai-inspired cabbage salad

Here's a salad that's delicious as it is unconventional. I was determined to make a salad using the most gorgeous cabbage I picked up at the farmer's market recently and used other ingredients I had on hand to put this together. Strange? Maybe. Tasty? You betcha.



thai-inspired cabbage salad

one small head of cabbage, shredded (about 6 cups)
4 green onions, green and white parts, chopped
2 granny smith apples, cored and cut into thin slices
1 cup fresh green peas
1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
1/2 cup cashews, chopped

dressing:
1 Tbsp soy sauce
1 Tbsp fish sauce
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 Tbsp rice vinegar
1/2 Tbsp ketchup
2 tsp quince jelly (apple butter would work well too)
2 tsp sugar
2 tsp ground ginger
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 tsp red chili flakes
zest of 1 lemon

Mix all ingredients of the dressing together and let sit for about 30 minutes or longer for the flavors to mingle. Let them get to know each other. Meanwhile, wash and chop up all those veggies and place them in a large mixing bowl (everything but the cashews). Pour the dressing over the veggies and toss well to coat everything. Then top with cashews, either in a large serving bowl or on individual plates. Serves 4-6.

This salad is substantial enough for a light dinner along with a nice piece of bread but would really be grand with some chicken satay on the side. Darn, does that sound yummy.
have a lovely day, Amy
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I spy

I spy fabulous frocks

1. 1960s fabric dress by cristina pires
2. harvest tunic by blue sea blue
3. mini dress by stephanie teague
4. play in the sunshine recycled frock by i heart fink
5. wine me dine me dress by replicca
6. blossom silk dress by hot may day
have a lovely day, Amy
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out and about {weekend at the Shadow Art Fair}

Live in Michigan? Need something to do this weekend? Have two cents (literally) to rub together? Then why not stop by the Corner Brewery in Ypsilanti on Saturday and check out the Shadow Art Fair? I'll be there (with all of my b-line wares and some new not-even-listed-yet pretties). And we can hang out!


The details are here.

have a lovely day, Amy
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let's make {chinese paper yo-yos}

Have a few half-rolls of wrapping paper in your stash? Here's a simple craft to transform those remnants into colorful Chinese paper yo-yos.


You'll need just a few supplies:
a hot glue gun (or superglue)
wrapping paper
wooden dowel (1/8" by 12")
rubber bands

First, cut the paper into a large rectangle measuring 8 inches wide and at least three feet long. One easy way to do this is to cut straight through the tube of wrapping paper 8 inches from the end (it helps if you're dealing with the type without the cardboard inner tube or if you remove said tube first).


Unroll one end of the paper and apply a thin line of hot glue to the short edge (the 8 inch end).


Line up the dowel with one edge of the paper and press the dowel into the glue. Apply another strip of glue on top of the dowel.


Roll the paper tightly over the glued dowel and apply one more layer of glue just at the seam of the dowel and paper.


Roll it up tightly.


And secure with a couple of rubber bands. Allow the yo-yo to "cure" like this for 20-30 minutes.


Then remove the rubber bands and have a little fun!


Careful not to poke any eyes out. :)


Cast away!
have a lovely day, Amy
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