Sunday, January 31, 2016


On our recent bonus trip to Florida we needed to choose a micro shell to collect as we were banned from bringing home our usual giant haul-o-seashells.

Darling, colorful little coquinas fit the bill.

So many on the beach this time. Even the one who discouraged the idea of taking home shells became addicted to finding the pretty pairs.

One of the only other bivalves to make the cut and join the coquinas in the carry-on bag looks like a Big Kahuna coquina, but it is really a sunray venus clam which we learned from our googling is tasty and may soon be more common on seafood menus near you (if you are in Florida).

Every time we think or type coquina we want to say Coquina! as in Tequila! The perfect, circa 1958, top hit of The Champs, soundtrack for sipping our Sunshine State vacation beverage of choice, the Grapefruit Margarita.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

What's a Little Fussy Cutting Between Friends?

It is a true and generous friend indeed who will supply all the materials for, 
and teach you how to make a

quilt-as-you-go trivet, 

and then let you fussy cut a prime image right out of the center of some precious Spoonflower fabric.

Verily I say unto you such a friend is Jeri(sew(s)).

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Must Go Here

Stitch Supply Co. kindly let us have a look around even thought they were still unpacking and not officially open yet. 

They have cleverly displayed

bright, contemporary fabrics

in a brand new, colorful, airy space.

A highlight for this sewist - designer fabric lines not previously available in local shops.

Beautiful yarn too!

Friendly (and tolerant) staff.

Temptations galore.

You have been informed and warned. Our job here is done.

Saturday, January 2, 2016

(Peach Pit) Loon Magic

There was a period of time when one could find in every discount retail store a kiosk with a motion activated device that would play clips of the CDs on offer from a certain easy-listening music/relaxation sounds genre label. We blame the regrettable '90s and George Winston in particular.

You would be walking down the aisle headed for the Rubbermaid bins, potting soil, or printer paper and all of a sudden you might hear waves rolling in and out of the ocean onto a beach, the rustling of aspen leaves in a gentle breeze, or frogs peeping in a pond at twilight. After realizing you were not crazy you would go way out of your way to avoid that aisle on all future trips, but if you forgot, as we usually did, and passed by it again you might be surprised by one of  those aforementioned sounds or, perhaps one of the many, varied, haunting calls of a loon. Our memory is that that particular CD was titled Loon Magic. 

Here at NDL studio we have created, with a little help and enabling, er, encouraging from a Canada-connected friend a little loon magic of our own.

 To do so we revived a craft first seen in Canadian Living magazine two decades ago to make a new flock, or as some sources call it, a raft, of peach pit loons. Yes indeed, these little cuties are at their core humble, naked, peach pits. 

Ta dah! Incredible, eh?

And, since the original instructions are lost somewhere in our archives of pages torn from magazines we have had a devil of a time finding any guidance for round two of peach pit loon making. So, to get this almost lost art on the Google radar (personified new technology meets old technology in this wording), in other words make it Googleable here is a visual of what is needed to turn a peach pit into a loon. And just to make sure a Google search can find it. Peach pit loon. Peachpit loon. Peachpitloon. (Google may appreciate this effort, but Spellcheck is having a fit.)

And why would one want to make peach pit loons? Well, can you think of even one reason why not?

Thank you to the relatives both American and Canadian for consuming a half bushel of peaches during Canadian American Friendship Days 2015. 

Loons are pretty magical. We never fail to be enchanted when we hear them.