the ravenna girls

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Hard at work December 3, 2010

Filed under: business,crafty,Uncategorized — ravennagirls @ 12:28 am
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Despite a decent online presence (D got a droid for her b-day!), we have been busy as Santa’s Little Elves the last two weeks prepping for this craft show of ours and the holiday season in general. Thank goodness for snow and flexible work hours, or else we’d be way behind – but for now I think we’re generally prepared!

We kicked off the Holiday season by listed a slew of new items on etsy (both handmade and vintage),especially those for folks doing holiday décor. We learned our lesson last year that you really have to start listing these things around Halloween or you might miss those ahead of the game.

With our online shops squared away, we’ve been toiling in our newly organized craft room (!!) crafting some or standby products and some new things. What will we have for sale on Saturday?

Wood Gift Tags, Ornaments, and Advent Calendar sets: Upcycled from Christmas trees of years past and wood burned with rustic design for simpleholiday décor.

Map Bookmarks: Nautical themed bookmarks from vintage sailing charts

Felt Headbands

Soy Candles: Vintage mugs with vibrant colored soy wax

Felt Bow Brooches: Adorable, eh?

Yarn Wreaths: Both Holiday themed and all-season with vintage yarns, buttons, and felt embellishments

And friends, that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Over the next two days, we need to finalize our displays,make price tags, and get everything organized and ready to go. Plus, part of the sale is a bake sale tobenefit teen programming at the RECC, so we need to be busy in the kitchen as well!

Plus PLUS: we some exciting out of town visitors making a surprise appearance this weekend, so we’ll be menu scheming while our hands are busy.

Back to regularly scheduled holiday programming after the sale. If you or someone you know is in the neighborhood, stop by the Ravenna Eckstein community center and see all the great artists participating. We checked out the vendor list, and there are going to be some goodies, that’s for sure! Entrance to the RECC is off 65th Ave NE (we got lost our first time).


Birthday Time October 19, 2010

Filed under: celebrations,friends and family — ravennagirls @ 1:12 pm
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You might remember our previous post about little Madeleine. Well, we are happy to report that her recovery is going SO well, she’s regaining more and more leg movement everyday, and most importantly, TODAY is her FIRST BIRTHDAY!!! While I can’t believe a year has gone by so fast, its awesome to get a chance to celebrate this brave little girl who has impacted our lives so much.

Last week, her grandma was in town, so Mom and Dad organized a small birthday party for Madeleine. It was great fun, a chance to do the first cake smash (M loved the smashing but NOT the taste of frosting!), give some gifts, and see her happy and wiggly all over the place.

{here she is mid cake smash..}

{meet M exactly one year ago, here…}

Baby girl is going to be a great fashionista some day because she got all kinds of crazy cute outfits for year 2. We gave her a fun knitted baby beret that we picked up at a Team EtsyRain event, a new dinner plate with fun french words on it (perfect for a baby named Madeleine), and took our hand at a new sewing endeavor: CLOTHES!

Well, lucky for us, baby rompers have pretty simple construction. We followed this free pattern called Vivienne from BurdaStyle and i think it came out pretty well. We used an Amy Butler pattern for the top, a Lightweight gray wool for the body (we are entering fall and winter here, folks!) and a vintage floral pattern for the lining. Finished it off with some coordinating rosettes, and some snaps on the shoulders.All in all, it took the two of us a day to make and it was so fun and rewarding. The best part of the pattern is that its simple but you can customize it many ways, so look for more jumpers coming soon to babies near you!

We picked up some tights in a soft yellow color, so baby will be strutting her stuff any day now!

In other cuteness, one of M’s favorite toys is a sock monkey from Grandpa Steve, so for her birthday he bought her a GIANT sock monkey. The look on her face was priceless, she knows this toy, but didn’t remember it being so huge when she left home this morning!!

Happy very first birthday darling!


Bunnies! September 21, 2010

Filed under: crafty — ravennagirls @ 7:54 pm
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While B has been all over her new sewing machine lately (evidence here, here, here…), I have been working on other crafty-ness.  I admit, I wasn’t really that interested in the sewing machine.  I like pinning her fabrics sometimes, but I have not been behind a sewing machine since middle school home economics.  Even then, we made ridiculously terrible stuff out of even-worse fabrics.   One time we made a fabric “necklace”…It was really a tube of fabric that we filled with marbles.  The terrible thing must have weighed a ton.  Or at least enough to cause neck spasms for the person wearing it.  Worse then the weight, though, might have been the fact that every fabric to pick from was not only pink and floral…but shiny metallic as well.

So, yeah, I like hand stitching.  In fabrics without sheen.


But then one day I was perusing The Martha Encyclopedia of Fabric Arts.  There were so many cute stuffed animal patterns!  One was so darling… a little bunny!

(you can download the pattern from Martha here…)

Being a sucker for bunnies, and having August be the month-o-babies around here… I sprung into action.  B and I dug through some fabrics we had in the craft room. 

And then we sat and made some bunnies!

We traced and cut all the pieces.  B has this very fun invisible ink pen, which I enjoyed. 


Then we began sewing.  B showed me all kinds of cool buttons on her machine.  For the parts I sewed, I even got to unplug the pedal and use this on/off stitch button to do the sewing.  B, for the record, prefers the pedal.


The hardest part of sewing this project was attaching the ears.  You had to fold them into the head and then stitch the ears and the head together at the same time.  The ears were pretty large …and we had used thick fleece-y fabric for one side of them, making it a lot of fabric to have in the right place.


We used the machine to sew everything but the face of the bunny and attach the arms.  We stuffed the bunnies and sewed on the arms by hand.  Actually. B did that part.  I tried to do it, but it was taking me forever and it was hard to really get the stitches to be invisible on the outside.  B to the rescue!

The cute little eyes and nose are hand-embroidered as the last step.

We gave them to a few babies recently… but really I want one.  : )


oH, and then you watch the babies play with them when you go over to take pictures of them.



Advent December 6, 2009

Filed under: christmas,diy — ravennagirls @ 10:39 am
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is the season when we prepare for Christmas.  It’s no secret that it is my favorite time of the year.

Besides doing golly things around town, exchanging gifts with friends, decorating the house like our own winter wonderland, eating cookies, and going to lots of beautiful worship services, B and I have our own special tradition.

It started this one semester that we had to celebrate advent in upstate NY.  We were more then a bit bored and decided it would be fun to make a little advent calendar.  We would then buy little presents for each other for each day on the calendar.   Then, every night we would open up a present and exclaim with glee.

That tradition has continued… here is our fourth annual advent calendars….

(B’s is on the left, mine on the right)

I am always excited to shop and open.  It makes me really love every single day before Christmas and extend that gift giving season a bit.  Plus, it’s fun to have our own little special something.

hmmm… what will we open tonight?


the beginning of the christmas season December 3, 2009

Filed under: christmas — ravennagirls @ 11:47 pm
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…it starts really with the trek to the forest to discover our tree.  I will tell you about that later, though. 

Really, the beginning of the Christmas season for me inside is at the Christmas Dessert.

It’s where volunteers decorate tables for the season, invite some women friends to come, and enjoy a evening program – filled with songs and stories and the meaning of Christmas –  to go with your dessert.

B and I… well, it’s not a secret that we are decorating nerds.  We have so much Christmas decor it doesn’t all get used in one year.  Which really is why the dessert is perfect for us.  We each order a table.   That’s right, I said each.  I mean, when you have that much great material to work with….

We still love to make a few new things for our tables… Nothing like a few new things for the holidays!

So without further ado…

B’s table is what I am going to call “The Rustic, Glittery Woodland.”

Thats right, someone loves the new Martha glitter line AND the beauty of wood.

B created a river RIGHT down her table.  On sides of the banks were found rocks from Washington beaches, pieces of our past Christmas trees as stumps/logs, and beautiful creatures.  The animals were from a variety of locations, all ornaments, and made from natural materials.  Some of the small owls had little cut wood parts making feathers. 

Her forest was complete with the addition of her trees.  They were a Martha craft project last year.   Using different sized circles, you fold the paper to look like darling evergreen.  A little glitter on the edges and a champagne cork as a trunk complete the crafty trees. 

B also lit her table with bronze and white tapers.  The tapers stood in candlestick holders she bought at a thrift store this summer.  She didn’t just leave them brown though… She painted them green and then… POOF! Glitter-ified them in peridot.

I love them.  They are going to look so good on our mantle!


My, D’s, table was “Snowy Village in the Mountain with Sparkle.”  You must have sparkle,after all. 

The base of my mountain had large presents with handmade bows (a litle diy in the future for you!)

The central, eye level area was the village part.  I got all these crazy houses for a buck or two at various Goodwills.  then i spray painted like crazy and white glitterd the snowy roofs.  I love my new village more then anyone I have seen in a store so far… and for QUITE a lower price point as well!  (the houses only cost me 20 bucks and a little time..)

(in fact — here is a BEFORE pic!)

The tippy tippy top was a combo of my new advent wreath i just bought myself from Rare Device (SWOOOON!), the Baby Jesus/Mary/Joseph from my Nativity set that my parenst got me for my last birthday,  and this little glass ornament I have.  The ornament was the inspiration for the whole table.  It is a church, covered in glittery wonder.

But really, although our tables were great and I got to use my 12 days of Christmas plates again AND we got to have four {small} desserts…

It is really about the great company of friends and the celebration of a birth that truly is the greatest gift that any of us will ever receive.

{and that night, as i slept, visions of my Chrismas Dessert table 2010 danced in my head}

{ps, thanks to Jo, who took more pictures then me – gasp – and nicely allowed me to borrow a few so you could see all the details.  her blog has even more pictures.}


and we are outta here November 26, 2009

Filed under: etsy — ravennagirls @ 6:45 am
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to celebrate Thanksgiving.


While we are gone for the weekend though, you should hop on over to Etsy

A bunch of shops are having sales this weekend, including our vintage shop!  {EVERY single item at RavennaGirlsVintage is buy one item, get one half off… Friday through Monday!}

I have never really understood Black Friday.  I like shopping in stores, yes, but I enjoy doing it when I can think straight about what I actually like to buy for people.  I like to take it slow and wait for that perfect thing to appear.

Which is pretty much why Etsy’s Black Friday Sales all weekend are pretty darn terrific.  You can find the perfect handmade or vintage  item in your jammies drinking coffee while everyone else is out fighting over the Wiis in the rain.  Mmmm handmade goodness, mmmm presents, mmmm cozy!

I seriously LOVE etsy.  There is so much amazing stuff over there, and I cannot believe the beauty that is made by talented people!


this scarflette

this moomin calendar!

this fun reindeer!

these vintage houses….

i hope you find the perfect presents!


a few gifts for baby… September 11, 2009

Filed under: celebrations,crafty — ravennagirls @ 2:37 pm
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Two weeks ago now,  our friend Heather had a baby shower.

It was quite lively & fun – a non-traditional shower at a local italian restaurant – a chance to eat out and chat with the new mom-to-be. 

Oh, and watch her open presents.  Gifts for a baby girl that will make an appearance in mid-October.  Let me just say one thing about the present-opening extravaganza…. CUTENESS.  Baby girl cuteness exploded and was oh-so-fun to see.

What did we give the new family? 

Want to see a few things?

                             {click on the links to see more}

Let’s start with B:

1.  This adorable Birdie Teething Ring from LittleSaplingToys. Perfect sized for infants, sanded velvety smooth, with no coating (toxins) to worry about, and bird-themed to go with. . . well, you’ll see. [Bonus: Little Sapling Toys plants a tree for every piece you buys for them. I scored on a free-shipping weekend and also picked up a hippo for another expectant mom] birdie

2.  This darling dress from Target’s Dwell Baby Studio line.  Look at the apples!


3.  The focal point was a changing-table mobile created from felt, ribbon, and lavender. Not too much lavender, but enough to keep the area near the changing table smelling fresh (and girly!). Inspired by hair clips from ModernBean, B decided to tackle a larger piece to match the bubble gum bedding set so lovingly chosen by mom. Each little bit took awhile to choose color combos and hand stitch, but the overall effect is fun, bouncy, and hopefully will entertain the little gal while she’s having her diaper changed.

Inspiration: These adorable felt toddler hair clips from ModernBean

Inspiration: These adorable felt toddler hair clips from ModernBean

B tried to mimic the colors and whimsy from Bananafish's Bubble Gum Bedding. Photo credit:

b tried to match the color scheme and whimsy from bananafish's bubble gum bedding. photo credit:



And now from D:

1.  A cute shirt, socks and adorable baby hat from Happy Green Bee Organics.  All organic and oh-so-soft.

 hap green bee

2.  This cute plush Bunny from World of Whimm.  Baby’s first happy bunny!  We met this etsy seller at a Team Etsy Rain event and I picked up the bunny with hopes of a baby girly Madeleine…


3.  After all that, the gift D was most excited to give was a handmade birdie mobile for the baby nursery. D saw this mobile here a while ago and saved it to my ever-growing projects-to-do list.  Then a few months ago we took a needlefelting class where we learned to make lil birdies!  Perfect right? {so great I might deem this not just a baby gift  and might make one for me!}

The birdies are all hand felted with wool roving in light pink  — with bits of white, magenta, yellow and green accents.  Their eyes are small beads that are sewed on.  After felting seven birdies, D attached each birdie to pieces of driftwood from the Washington coast.  Then she drilled some holes through the wood and used monofilament to string it together.

The piece is perfect to add a great punch to the nursery, maybe in the corner with the rocker?

birdies in flight


birds on branches



Now… all that is missing is the baby….