July 18, 2010

French Themed Swaps

My dear friend MARIE of Lost Bird Studio and I had decided to swap one of those larger matchboxes. It wasn’t hard to agree on a theme for altering the box because like many of you we both love everything French.

That’s MARIE’S beautifully wrapped matchbox. Isn’t the stamped button just fabulous?

matchbox wrapped

matchbox wrapped detail 

She also sent me a sweet little fabric hanger that held some extra treasures. 

fabric hanger

Take a peek inside

holder content

That’s the front and the back of the lovely matchbox. Well, I actually can’t decide which is the front and which is the back.

matchbox front and back

Lots of wonderful goodies: Pearls, fabric tape measure, laces and buttons


Look, how creative MARIE used that pretty bottle top! She had winded some lace around the cork. I love it!



Thank you, dear MARIE! I love the box and everything else you have spoiled me with! These are great treasures to create a French collage or an assemblage with. Maybe it won’t take me too long to come up with something because your gifts are so inspiring :-).

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This is my box for Marie. I made it in a vintage worn look, imagining that it once belonged to a girl who had collected some treasures in it that reminded her of Paris. She always dreamed to come back one day …


matchbox detail





The treasures that didn’t fit into the matchbox she kept in this envelope


Some French Ephemera that also reminds her of  the wonderful time she had spent in Paris


  Since Saturday everything belongs to MARIE and now she can dream of Paris :-).

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I still owe you some pictures of my as well French themed swap package for my sweet Cajun JODIE at “everything vintage”.

JODIE loves velvet and so I had sewed this bag for her


bag detail1

bag detail2

with inside pockets

bag inside1

 bag inside2

  These are some of the other things I had sent her: Lace motifs, cabinet cards, vintage postcards of Paris, some old metal pieces, buttons and I happily granted her request for a larger amount of charlotte doll heads.


I made this fabric tag


 and a lace heart.


Some trims, more buttons, old tickets, vintage confirmation cards, a rusty key hole plate, an old spool, tiny handmade purses and a vintage travel guide for Paris

trims etc.


It had been such a fun swap and I’m looking forward to seeing  JODIE using some of the things in her beautiful creations.

For me it’s time now to hop into my bed and have some sweet dreams :-).

Have a lovely week, dear friends!

Hugs to you,


July 12, 2010

A Package From My Cajun Girlfriend

When I received the swap box from my sweet, funny, dear and so wonderfully crazy friend
I couldn’t help myself but just rip it off right away. I knew that everything would be just fabulous but it was much more than that.
THIS GIRL had spoiled me rotten with the most gorgeous things. Amongst others there were velvet flowers, vintage brooches, hand made tags and this rusted door back plate she had bought at the antique fair in Round Top/Texas.
door plate door plate1
A basket filled with the most YUMMY things
Gorgeous laces, millinery and vintage earrings
The softest velvet ribbons in delicious colors,  numbered tags and more earrings
A sweet lavender pillow with the scent of the Provence
lavender pillow
Another beautiful door back plate. JODIE had embellished this one with our initial :-)
pocket hanger detail
and it is part of  the gorgeous pocket wall hanger she had created for me
pocket hanger
Can you read the wonderful quote?
“Every artist dips his brush in his own soul and paints his own nature into his pictures.”
Henry Ward Beecher
pocket hanger detail1
What would be more appropriate than using the pocket to keep my brushes in?
A zipper rose – another sweet detail
pocket hanger detail2 
An attached note had asked me to take out the pocket wall hanger carefully out of the package because it would hold something breakable.
Inside the pocket I found these salt shakers. Would you think that German glass glitter would be the hardest thing to find in Germany? It in fact is and so I was thrilled to see these three beautifully embellished bottles filled with glass glitter in yummy colors. Don’t they just look so PRETTY?
glass glitter
I was already over the moon with all those amazing treasures but there was more to come.
A small velvet sack. I was wondering what it would contain and found out that JODIE had created the most BEAUTIFUL necklace for me. I jumped for joy! Take a look at the vintage plate with a “J”! Jodie told me that she had bought it from a lady who assumed that those plates were either used as handle bars of old bicycles or maybe in old automobiles. Isn’t it such a cool idea to use it for a necklace? I just LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it and had worn it several times in the meanwhile.
necklace detail
I thought I had reached the bottom of the box and had been more than overjoyed already when I discovered that there were even more gifts for me to unwrap.
When JODIE had posted about her trip to the “Petticoat and Parasols” art retreat in Savannah, there was one picture showing her wearing a pretty yellow hat. I had commented that I liked it, not knowing that the sweet girl immediately decided to send me the same hat. I LOVE the hat! It suits me very well and is such a great match with lots of my clothing. Since I’m a camera shy girl, you only get to see my mannequin wearing it, together with JODIE’s necklace  though :-).
hat and necklace
Vintage watch straps. What a cool find is that? I can imagine using them in collages and assemblages.
watch straps
  In this pretty sugar sprinkler you see something that is typical for the area where JODIE lives. I had no idea what Spanish moss is and learned that it is a plant that grows on large trees in humid regions like Louisiana.
spanish moss and watch straps 
Another gift from JODIE’s home was the "Louisiana Hometown Cookbook". Anyone in the mood for “Sweet & Sour Alligator”? I’ve eaten alligator once in Florida and it was very tasty. It’s almost impossible to find them in grocery stores over here though and therefore I will more likely go for recipes like “Cajun Chili”, “Charlie’s Chicken Jambalaya” or “Sweet Potato Casserole”. Yummy!
JODIE, Thank you so much for  all the wonderful treasures! I love each and everything and I love you too, girl!
Well, wasn’t that a most amazing package? I’m not even sure I really covered every single gift. There were so many and I was totally overwhelmed as you can imagine. I hope the swaps you are participating in are as wonderful as the ones I had the pleasure to be a part of.
I wish you a lovely Tuesday, dear friends!

July 08, 2010


As a quilter you mostly swap pieced, stitched or appliqu├ęd quilt blocks, fabrics, sometimes embellishments but rarely something finished that you could put on your table or hang on your wall the moment you receive it. Only very few of  the quilt blocks I had swapped during my years of an enthusiastic quilter made it into a finished project. Often the blocks didn’t match too well or I had been busy working on other quilts. When they had laid around for months or years I often had lost interest in sewing them together because my taste of colors or style had changed by then.

When you swap with friends who love mixed media and altered arts, it is different. You do not only receive amazing treasures to use for your creations but also beautiful artwork to decorate your home or yourself with :-). The swaps with

KAREN of  ”Some Days are Diamonds”


JODIE of  “everything vintage”

had been no exception.

Today I show you pictures of my swap with Karen. At first the goodies that she had sent me.

A box decorated with lovely flowers

box detailsbox and ribbons

Pretty ribbons, laces, charms, jewelry pieces and buttons


paper tape and charms

A beautifully embellished notebook


with adorable pink vintage rhinestone buttons

detail notebook2 

detail notebook

I love embellished bottles and was very excited to see that Karen had made this cute pink one for me. The sweet wallpaper in the back and underneath the bottle had been a gift from Karen as well.


bottle detail

More pretty velvet ribbon, lace and a wonderful vintage French book

book and ribbon

Thank you, Karen! The box and the sand dollar are decorated on one of our living room window sills. Your pretty journal and the lovely bottle went onto my studio shelf.  All the other treasures are wonderful additions to my stash :-).

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This is what I made for Karen. She had sent me a couple of pictures of her Mom to use in one of the gifts and I decided to make a fabric book.

fabric book cover

fabric book1

fabric book2

fabric book3

On the left pages I had created pockets to put in some real pictures or maybe a letter or note written by Karen’s Mom.

collage fabric book

Then I made this heart for Karen. If you hadn’t known by know, I’m a lace addict. Here are more evidence to proof it, lol.



Stamped clothes pins and some of the embellishments, buttons, ephemera etc. I had sent

clothes pins

heart and goodies

Karen collects cups and saucers. I chose this demitasse because I thought she would like that cute size, the flower pattern and the gold. A name tag for her to wear maybe at the next art retreat.

cup and name tag

If you have never participated in a swap, I can only encourage you to do so. It’s not just the fun and excitement to receive a package from a swap partner. I also enjoy thinking about what to make, finding out what my swap partner might like and finally creating the gifts and putting the goodies together!

In my next post I will show you what I have swapped with JODIE.

Until then, have fun creating!