My Current Fixation

Dwell Studio at Fawn & Forest.

1. I've been fixated on getting things ready for Ruby's arrival even more now that I'm into the third trimester and Nov. 4th finally seems FOR REAL! I've decided on a crib, crib bedding, and a general color scheme that work for a girl but that will also work well within the space she'll be sharing with Sebastian. However, I'm stuck at what to do for decor on the wall or above her crib in the form of a mobile. I love the way some have used bunting, decals, and handmade bird mobiles to keep things personal or modern but I'm itching for something a little less expected. Are there more important things in this world to dwell on? Not when the hormones won't let your attention be held by much else in the quiet moments between 3 and 4 a.m. when I seem to wake up most often!

We're headed in the direction of 'granny chic' lite with a sprinkling of modernity to keep things balanced. I love the idea shown above. Any suggestions promise to be thoroughly reviewed during my middle of the night brain storming sessions.

Fantastic color schemes on fantastic clutches from Nimli.

2. The colors shown above make me really happy. I love the bright pinks and oranges mixed with that peacock blue. This is sort of being worked into Ruby's decor as Sebastian's got a lot of blue and yellow already.

Embroidery patterns coming soon to RVA.

3. I'd love to have a small collection of artwork in her space but I feel like so many of my walls have small collections of artwork that I need something larger to balance things out. I've thought about purchasing a 3' x 3' canvas and going to town on it. I purchased this piece from Mary Kate McDevitt a few weeks ago intending for it to be the start of such a collection. Today I found myself using similar colors to complete a sample for my vintage chairs embroidery patterns that will soon be added to the RVA shop, and I wondered if I should do a gathering of work in this chair theme or yellow, cream and blue color scheme. Still, it feels like I've already done that.

I'm not trying to outdo any nursery decor out there on the world wide web. It's more like a personal challenge that must be accepted. I can't just throw a bunch of pink stuff together and be happy with it. The only problem is we've kind of got a deadline and time is ticking away, tick, tick, ticking away. (DC Talk anyone?) I'm writing all of this to share the state of my head these days and in hopes that your creativity might help me get one step closer to that idea that should be forming any day now. It's one of the elements of this journey that I'm allowing myself to indulge in creatively, understanding its place in the grand scheme of things, but also letting it be a source of hope and excitement when so many other parts of life can feel out of my control. Thanks for sharing it with me!

P.S. August 31st is the best day of the month to have a birthday.


Things I Love From RVA

This sweet Pumpkin Spice Bow.

These Olive Nerd Glasses!

Something to keep things organized as all the crazy happens.

The squirrel.

The fox.

And of course, the 'gender neutral but really intended as something for the men in our lives because everything else at RVA is for the ladies' leather journal. This is a new design and one I love for it's simplicity and modernity. Rugged and smart at the same time, right?

I'm out for the weekend to catch up on life while enjoying Brett's family and the flea marketing that will ensue. It's been a testing week with a new schedule and less time to give to work as Brett has started grad school and is finishing up the rest of his to do list to enroll in the ROTC and Reserves. We're learning how to manage the new normal as well as we did with the old normal and are hoping for good returns on our investments. There will be a separate blog post with the back story on this for anyone who is wondering where that came from.

I hope you have a refreshing weekend and get some time for yourself.



Interior Eye Candy

If you've ever opened an Anthropologie catalog, you've seen James Merrell's work.

If you need more, visit his site. I know there is a term for this in the design world.



No Real Theme Here...Just Go With It

Another good reason to learn to read crochet patterns. Thanks, Jen, for being the 157th person to recommend a Ravelry account. I finally did it!

In love with the color and pattern mix in this pretty blanket.

I would love to find one of these in a flea market somewhere.

A lovely photo.

Really impressed with this fantastic quilt top from Kitsch Cafe.

Call me crazy but we're aiming in this direction with baby #2. Almost tried it with Sebastian but after reading more and more about them and hearing personal online stories and already having gone through potty training and all that that can entail...I think I'm ready. And such pretty colors!

Need to work on something like this for Sebastian this Fall to try to compensate for the amount of sewing and knitting I'll be directing towards Ruby. I love almost EVERYTHING Smallville creates. Yes, I've decided. Everything.

Brett started grad school classes this week and told me this afternoon that Tuesday (yesterday) we had officially known each other for nine years. We met outside of English 101 on the first day of class our freshman year of college after being introduced by a mutual new friend.

I love that he remembered.

Another for the collection: I walked past three middle aged men on treadmills at the YMCA Tuesday morning and heard a whispered, 'Wow', come from one of them.

Yes. I know it's big.


The Last August Weekend Before Today

I found an armoire,
located a power sander,
played in the backyard,
let my belly see the sun,
ate two icy pops,
didn't sleep well,
spent a lot of time driving Brett to and from work,
cleaned my studio,
rearranged Sebastian's room again,
did laundry,
did dishes,
purged some fabric scraps,
visited with new neighbors,
received happy mail two days in a row,
started reading Handmade Nation,
cut out leather journals,
sketched out some embroidery patterns,
got a shoulder rub that took away all the tension,
got up early and waited on the sun,
and realized this baby is coming soon.


Sponsor Feature ~ Office Type

Another of our August Blog Sponsors is Office Type, a crafty Etsy shop run by Angie of ScrapScene. She has a variety of goodies in her shop including plushie cloud pins, polymer clay sweets, and acrylic paintings on wooden laminate.

"I live on a houseboat with my husband, two children, and a whole lot of craft supplies! Right now, my favourite materials are fabric, paint, and polymer clay. With fabric, I have been obsessed with making plushie pins out of clouds and other shapes. I am also addicted with making polymer clay miniature charms in the shape of donuts, cookies, and other sweets. My latest fixation has been on trees and so recently I listed a series of tree paintings. My fabric stash is out again so I'm not sure what will be next!"

I think living on a house boat sounds exciting enough but this woman has her crafty ear to the ground and seems to be in the know about the latest kits, online classes, giveaways and more so be sure to stop by her blog, ScrapScene, as well as her Etsy shop, OfficeType, and tell her you saw her on Smile and Wave!

If you'd like to be one of our September Blog Sponsors check out our Ad Inquiries page and send an e-mail to Leigh-Ann at FreckledNest@gmail.com. She'll send you all the information you need to get Smile And Wave readers headed in your direction.

P.S. Who watched Mad Men last night?

P.P.S. We are at least one day behind every time a new show airs as we are following along via iTunes so you can assume that we don't know what happened yet.



VIntage Infused

A few more burp rags made from vintage bedsheets and tablecloths for Ruby.

They measure about 9" x 20" and all have matching Tiffany blue tabs. I love how they look stacked together in a bunch and shall probably make another batch before she gets here. I'm not sure I can have too many and there is still no shortage of vintage sheets in the studio as I keep finding more. In fact, I picked one up last weekend at a flea market that was still in its original packaging and was suddenly inspired to make Ruby's crib sheets out of these prints.

We've had thunderstorms all night which means Sebastian has been out of his bed five times for various reasons, the last of which involved changing out HIS sheets. Between that and a little girl with hiccups and the tendency to rearrange herself as soon as I drift off to sleep, this Mama has had one long night. What else does one do when one should be sleeping but can't? Blog.

Here's to a lovely Thursday!

p.s. If you've got a DIY home project or something crafty and original that you're particularly proud of or have recently been inspired by on someone else's blog, send me an e-mail with a link. I'd love to showcase some great work over the next few weeks and know you all are a talented bunch so don't be shy! My e-mail can be found above on the contact page.


Kiss, Kiss

We had a little family photo shoot last night before the rain got to us. Sebastian was not as interested as we'd hoped but he did cooperate and got his cookie when it was over. I'm not too proud to bribe the kid when it comes to family photos. Elsie was our photographer and did a great job as always! I love how these colors turned out. We may be doing another when the weather clears up a bit which means getting to dress up again! What you can't see in this picture are the cute cowgirl boots I found at Goodwill last week and Sebastian standing off to my left playing with his toy airplane that we brought to keep him occupied.

Currently at 29 weeks and into the third trimester. I went into a mom & pop furniture shop today to ask about an armoire. The man had to call his Mrs. to get the price and told her he was talking to a woman who looks about 9 months pregnant.


Yeah. I forgive older men for their pregnancy remarks as most of them are quite inaccurate but what do they really know about it. Right? Plus he gave me a GREAT deal on the armoire and I can't wait to pick it up tomorrow and get to work on it! It's old without being in bad shape and simple enough for me to 'trick out' without having to work around any strange details. After a good sanding, paint job, added rods and maybe some paper lining, I'll show you how pretty it is.

Thanks for stopping by!


In honor of the Weiss family's visit to Springfield this Saturday.

We were able to see mewithoutYou in concert at Cornerstone Music Festival many summers back when RVA was still just a booth with pretty things and children weren't yet on our to do list. We were set up in a hot, dusty tent with other return vendors and musicians and it seemed that Aaron Weiss (aka: THE HOT ONE) was great friends with a few of the folks in the next aisle and spent a few hours over the weekend hanging out and catching up with them. However, I never actually TALK to the indie musicians that I admire, I just walk past and watch them from a distance. I'm one of THOSE fans.

I will say with 100% certainty that a mewithoutYou concert is one of the most inspiring and enthusiastic live shows you might ever attend. They are usually small enough that you feel a part of things and magical enough that you feel like the creativity and thought involved came from a place of love for the audience rather than to distract you from the mediocre performance.

Brett is the one with the detailed knowledge of the band and their history, personal stories, theology, etc. I love them for their lyrics and beautiful videos like this one. Enjoy!




I spent one night last weekend working on cleaning out and rearranging Sebastian's stuff in order to make space and have an idea of where things will be going in a few months when Ruby arrives. I sat in a corner for about twenty minutes before I got started so that I could visualize where things would rest, what we didn't need anymore, and what was still missing. I tend to do this in any room I'm about to change up so that I have a plan when I start working.

I was finishing up another batch of chalkboard thought bubbles last week when Sebastian asked me to make him one. This is his request for anything crafty that I'm working on. He'll come over and watch for a little while and ask what I'm doing and then put in his request. Working on a little girl's smock? "Make me one, Mama." Most of the time I've either already made him one or it isn't necessarily appropriate for a man child, but I like to oblige him when I can. I finally finished the backing on his chalkboard and hung it on his door to warn any female visitors of the impending doom that will befall them if they don't heed his warnings.

Another change up was removing his cork board and filling the empty space with this fantastic set of alphabet flash cards by Jenn Ski. I got mine at Michael's Craft Store a few months ago when they were on sale after seeing them featured on OhDeedoh.com but didn't have the right idea for how to implement them until recently. Before hanging them, I laid them out on the floor to get the measurements and rows figured out and then used push pins, cotton twine, and clothes pins to display them. Eventually I'd like to laminate them so Ruby can handle the cards without them falling apart.

The table and chair underneath have been various things but they are currently filling the spot of the play kitchen that we're still figuring out. I've picked up a few vintage items for S to use in the meantime. So much easier on my eyes than some I've seen in big box stores, not to mention more affordable.

This is where Ruby's stuff has been piling up. This is an old shelf that I had in my room during high school. It's currently home to books we're saving for Sebastian, toys he's outgrown that we are saving for Ruby, and a wicker basket full of things she'll need down the road. Sebastian's shelf/wardrobe has been rearranged to hold most of her newborn clothes and shoes but my sewing urges are at dangerously high levels which means we'd better find that armoire quickly.

What have you been preparing/planning for these days? Have you finished your back-to-school shopping or are you hanging on tight to the last few days of unplanned summer time?



p.s. We just made it to 500,000 today! Thanks for visiting so often!!!

In Search of the Perfect Armoire

I want something made of real wood that has some history and charm for Ruby's lovely things. This is a compilation of styles and shapes to help keep me focused so I don't pay too much for something made of particle board.

This one.

This one.

This one.

This one.

This one.

This one.

This one.

And this one.

I've been searching all the local places and checking craigslist.org two or three (five or six) times a day but haven't even come close to something similar. It's my new obsession and I've never had to look so hard for something. I think it'll be even more exciting once I find it, or something that can be turned into what I'm looking for, and I can't wait to fill it with lots of pretty things.



More Granny Chic That I'm Loving

Kara's doily journals are one of my favorite repurposed doily projects out there. Get one while you can!

Mandi deserves a ribbon AND a cookie for designing her own scrapbook papers, hand making her wooden mini albums, and gathering it all together to looks so nice in kits that you can purchase here. She's recently posted one of three tutorials for customizing your wooden mini album and I think I'm in love with it.

SO excited about this news from Mint via Elise.