Moth and Rust, or, I’m Moving–for realsies, this time!

For some time now, I’ve been wanting to get back into the craft biz.  I have been thinking, dreaming, planning…and my new brand, Moth and Rust, has become a reality!

etsyThe Etsy shop is humble now, but I mean to grow it in the upcoming weeks and months.  I also plan on having items available for sale elsewhere–more on that later, on the new blog.  And as ever, I want to promote other fabulous local artisans and encourage everyone to live a handmade life!profile1

 

If you’d like to learn more about my creations, please check out the Moth and Rust blog (where I will be posting from now on) at mothandrusthandmade.wordpress.com.

And be sure to like the Moth & Rust facebook page, because there will be a giveaway soon!!

Weaving on My New Loom

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tartanscarf2I was attempting to organize a while back when I realized (again) that I have a lot of yarn.  More than I’ll be able to knit up in the next 10 years, at least, and lots and lots of leftovers.  I realized I needed–needed!–some way to use these up so I can, of course, buy more without feeling guilty…and I realized weaving was the answer.

At the time, I didn’t actually know it was the answer, but it sounded good enough.  Once I got my lovely 15″ Schacht Cricket Loom from the Woolery, though?  All I can say is WOW!

Aside from being immensely enjoyable, weaving is also, indeed, the perfect way to use up yarn for which you may not be able to find a knitting project.

That being said…the scarf pictured here is made from newly purchased yarn.  (I will be sharing my scrappier pieces later.)  This plaid pattern was ridiculously easy to create, and it’s made from Lion Brand Heartland yarn…yes, it’s acrylic, but it’s also super-soft and made in the USA. And the colors are quite lovely.

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This is what my little loom looks like…at $189, it’s a great investment.  It comes with everything you need to get started, including two balls of Brown Sheep Company yarn!  (Ironically, I think I’m going to save these for a knitting project…hehe.)

 

Steampunkesque in Mulvane, KS

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Steampunk costume by Majestic Velvets

Fans of Victorian/Sci-Fi/Fantasy, take note: the first EVER Steampunkesque Mulvane Festival is happening this Fall!

Hosted by the Mulvane Downtown Revitalization Program, this Steampunk affair will be taking place Friday, October 14 through Sunday, October 16, and feature events like an Evening with Edgar Allen Poe, Victorian brunch, a silent auction fundraiser, shopping, live music, and more.

Because this is their first year, vendors can participate for FREE.  Check out the application linked below for more information: 2016 Vendor Agreement: Steampunkesque Mulvane Festival

As you can probably imagine, I am thrilled to see this taking place, as I love steampunk and supporting local communities!  I can’t wait to dress up and check it out; you should be sure to do the same!  You can also support the festival’s official facebook page and stay up-to-date on further happenings here: SteampunkesqueMulvane

Steampunk Train/BBQ grill (no, really…!)

(re)focus on sustainability

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I recently discovered the Seamwork podcast (one I’m loving, by the way), which in turn lead me to discover designer and slow fashion blogger Jacqui Palhegyi at Birds of a Thread.  On that blog, Jacqui offers an ethical shopping guide, patterns and encouragement to sew yourself, and more.  It’s a lovely, inspiring site and definitely worth a look.

Listening to that particular episode, combined with the dilemma of having yet again accumulated perhaps too much sewing stuff, made me realize I’ve really lost sight of what used to be one of my major priorities in crafting: sustainability.

There was a time when I was quite adament about where everything I bought came from, but I got lazy and my diligence faded when faced with the challenges of finding ethically and sustainably made goods.

I want this to become my focus again: slow down, buy less, be aware of where everything is coming from and how its production affects people.

Do you feel like you need to embrace slow fashion again?  Or has it always been part of your life?  If you have resources you’d like to share for encouraging sustainable living, please pass them on!

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Breton Top Sewing Pattern // {Boatneck Knit Blouse}

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It’s finally here!
sailortopI’ve been wanting to make my own striped blouse/Breton top/French sailor shirt for a long time.   I had made the pattern, but it was surprisingly difficult to find just the right fabric; apparently, black stripes on white, in a decent knit cloth, is hard to come by.  I finally found a great fabric at Needle Nook Fabrics here in Wichita.  (One of my favorite shops, by the way.  Check them out!!)

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This is my original pattern, which I’m offering for free right now–please use as you wish!   (If you plan to sell a finished product based on the pattern, it would be much appreciated if you would mention Prairiesque as the source of your pattern. Thank you!! <3)

This particular pattern only covers a small range of sizes; however, it is a fairly basic two-piece pattern, which can be easily adjusted at the sides and in the middle or hem.  Also, it may fit differently depending on how stretchy your knit fabric is.   The best thing to do is experiment with some comparable but inexpensive fabric before making the final piece!  Instructions are as follows:

  1.  Print all pages (in the gallery below) and piece together with tape, using the picture below and alignment bars as a guide.
  2. The front and back of the bodice are the same, except for the neckline.  Place on fold to cut.  The sleeve is also placed on the fold when cutting.
  3.  With right sides together, stitch at shoulders.  You can use a 1/2″ or 5/8″ seam allowance.  I would also suggest stitching some non-stretch lace or ribbon along the shoulder seems to keep them from stretching.
  4. Pin armhole side of sleeve to bodice armhole, right sides together, and stitch.   Make sure your stripes align, at least close to the armpit/bottom of the armhole.
  5. With right sides together, pin garment so that sleeve edges and side edges are together (again, aligning stripes) and stitch up sides.  Be especially careful when matching up the stripes on the bodice!!  I learned the hard way that stripes may be together, but if you don’t match the corresponding stripes, you will end up essentially with a spiral going around the body, which makes getting a straight hem impossible.
  6. Hem arm holes, bottom, and neckline. You may also want to use ribbon or a running stitch in your neckline to prevent stretching.

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The chart here shows how the sections will print and how they are pieced together:breton pattern layout

To print the pattern pieces, click on each thumbnail below and print directly from that page, or save to your computer.

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Wildflowers, Updates, and You.

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Is it weird that some of my favorite flowers are noxious weeds?  (I don’t know, but since I’ve been told I’m weird, I guess it makes sense.)  So, here are some photos for your enjoyment!

Also, for your enjoyment, I’d like to announce that I am slowly updating this site so that there are links to sewing and knitting resources, art, artists, and local love (for those who are in Kansas, and particularly the Wichita area).  I want you to know this so that 1.) you can benefit from the info, and so that 2.) you can let me know what’s missing!

If you know of any great fiber crafting sites, artists, or cool Kansas entities that are not listed on my site, be sure to let me know!  Comment below, send me a private message, get in touch on facebook.

Are you an artist or crafter?  Don’t hesitate to tell me about yourself, either!  I want to know what kinds of awesome things you do!

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“So here’s what happened…” + Delightful Discoveries: Down Under Edition!

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If you can count on me to be consistent in just one thing, it would definitely have to be my fickleness.

Long story short: I started new blog with a new name because I thought it might have a slightly different feel than this blog (but honestly it was just the same blog), yet I continued to accumulate followers here and none at the new blog, so I’m back now!  (Wow.  That was riveting, I’m sure.)

So are things going to be different here at Prairiesque?  Probably not in any way anyone other than myself would notice.  Because…well…probably not actually.  I’ll still be sharing projects, inspiration, etc., when the mood strikes.

And it would seem there are some of you who are still interested in what I post, so today I’ll be sharing some…DELIGHTFUL DISCOVERIES!

  1. What We Do in the Shadows
    This “mockumentary” movie follows a group of vampires flatting together in New Zealand.  This came out in 2014, but I only discovered it this year.  It is simply hilarious, and I found it to be more so with each viewing. Please do yourself a favor and check it out.  If you’re like me, you won’t be able to stop quoting from it…
  2. frankie
    I recently picked up this “Australian Fashion Magazine,” but it seemed to me to be a little more substantial than that; there also is a strong focus on art and DIY culture, and lots of cool indie businesses and entrepreneurs featured inside.  
  3. The Neighbourhood Studio
    Discovered via the aforementioned magazine, The Neighbourhood Studio may not be of great interest to you unless you actually live in New Zealand, but I found the article on them pretty inspiring.  The studio/store focuses on screen printing and types of fabric dying, offering classes and more.  I’ll probably never go there, but I wish I could.  (I do, however, intend on getting serious about my long-time dream of screen printing my own fabrics…heh, well, we’ll see.)  If you check out The Neighbourhood Studio facebook page, you’ll see lots of lovely photos like these…you know I’m all about pretty pictures. 

 

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A Craftacular Weekend

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Last weekend was…Craftacular!!

As always, the handmade and vintage market held in Wichita was full of great artists, crafters, and vintage vendors.  There was a really great variety of goods to choose from, and I know the shoppers were appreciative of the selection and quality.

It’s always a privilege to be able to host this event–to come together with like-minded individuals, chat with old friends, and make new ones–and promote handmade in my community.  It’s a joy when a new entrepreneur gets their name out there and makes some good sales.  And while I love it all, this will probably be the last Craftacular–at least for a while.

This doesn’t mean it won’t be revived in a few years!  And it certainly doesn’t mean I won’t be working on other new exciting projects in the meantime.  It’s definitely been a learning experience that I’m thankful for, but for right now, I’ve decided it’s time to move on to other adventures…and you know I’ll keep you posted.😉

Enjoy these pics from the weekend!

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(What’s so funny!?  Oh, it’s me…) Good times with The Soiled Dove!

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Snowfox Pottery is lovely!!

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DSC_0052Gorgeous adornments by HAIKU

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This fabulous, real exotic beetle mounted by Pink Elephant Embellishments

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(I’m happy to say this big, black, beautiful beast is now mine!)

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Scents from Heaven and their lovely illuminated bottles.

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The girls from Oh Yarn It! knitting up a storm…I love to see live crafting!

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Sweet accessories from remixed on eco-friendly, upcycled tags!

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Beauties from Glass Innovations.
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Fun vintage from Grey Vintage!

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I just love Blythe Hollow’s business card!! Not to mention her doll creations…

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Lookin’ good, Reclectic!

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And you know I’m wild about WildFire Studios

It was a lovely day!  To see the rest of the great vendors, click here to  be taken to the official Craftacular Facebook page.

Happy Friday!

xo,
Leanne

Pearl, Ruby, Maxine, and Josephine…a Soiled Dove Co. perfume review

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soileddovesamplesOh, hai!  The long-awaited (at least by me) review of my Soiled Dove Co. perfumes is here!!  I know I’m a broken record by now, but all of Riley’s creations are simply exquisite.  Hopefully, these brief descriptions will help you find your perfect fit.  Of course, these are only four of twelve perfumes in the line…I’m thrilled to be able to sniff them all on October 24th at Craftacular!  (By the way…you should, too!)

pearlPearl {No. 3}
Elegant, warm, and lustrous like the shimmer of–yes–a pearl!  I always find the scent of jasmine to be delightful, but it also transports me back in time, which makes it one of my favorites.  It’s also perfect paired with the frankincense and myrrh found in Pearl.  Sweet and sexy, this is definitely a classic.    

rubyRuby {No. 2}
Ruby is cheerfully romantic–I’m a big fan of rose, so naturally I love it!  But I also know some people dislike rose perfumes, saying they have an “older”/grandmotherly feeling.  Ruby, however, could not be further from this.  It is decidedly upbeat and youthful with a shot of raspberry and peach, yet not too fruity.

 maxineMaxine {No. 11}
Leather, vanilla and amber mingle to create the perfect balance of cool and warm in the seductive Maxine.  Sophisticated and urbane, Maxine is a girl who knows what she’s about!   This is a pleasingly unique scent.

    

Josephine {No. 6}josephine
Another scent featuring lovely jasmine, I visual Josephine as being a bit of an earth child.  In true Soiled Dove fashion, this girl is anything but typical.  This blend, featuring grapefruit and mahogany, is vibrant yet rooted.

The P-Word.

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Epiphany time: as I was contemplating a certain theme, I thought to myself, “I wish I were a little more eloquent.”  It wasn’t until after the thought fully formed that I saw the irony and nearly laughed out loud.  For you see, dear reader, I had been expounding (mentally) on the necessity of practice–mainly in art and dance, though the same principle applies language and pretty much any other skill in the world.

So, instead of just dreaming of how I might encourage people, or waiting until I’m “good enough” at expressing my thoughts, I’ll follow my own advice and dive right in, be it ever-so-awkwardly, because you can’t get to where you want to be unless you Practice.

 

Throughout my life, I’ve had more than my fair share of what I’d call leisure time.  I’ve also had lots of encouragement from others to pursue various activities, little discouragement, and a natural inclination to not really care about other people’s negative opinions anyway.  As a result of these two huge advantages, I’ve practiced various arts pretty extensively.  Most of my interests were self- (or book- or internet-) taught, but I’ve spent a lot of time doing the things I love.

People frequently give compliments on my work.  They tell me I’m talented and creative.  At the risk of sounding completely full of myself, I won’t say they’re wrong.  Whatever skills I have are great gifts.  However, any talent I might have wouldn’t even be apparent if I didn’t practice.  Likewise, you can never know what talents you have unless you discover them…through practice, practice, practice!

I think this concept is largely ignored because it’s repeated so often.  It’s become just a buzz in the background of clichéd inspirational phrases.  But it’s repeated so often because it is so true!  Whether it’s drawing or dancing or writing or woodworking…you must do the thing not-so-well before you ca do it beautifully.  There will absolutely be a time when you are inept and uncomfortable in any discipline.  This period could last a month or ten years.  It’s different for everyone and with every skill.  You will make some things that aren’t quite up to par.  You will make some things that are just awful.  Everyone, including the most skilled–or perhaps I should say, especially the most skilled–has.

The only possible way for you to get better at something is to do that thing.  And above all, do not tell yourself you can’t.  Understand that every single person whose art you admire was, at some point, not an expert.

I’ll take a break from pontificating now.  And after writing that last sentence and reviewing what I’ve written here so far, this flashes across my mind: “I can’t think of a good way to wrap this up.  I’m no good with conclusions.”  More sweet irony!  It’s okay to end like this.  This piece doesn’t have to be perfect, it just has to be.  If I want to be a good writer, I’ll have to write some bad stuff first.  And keep practicing.