Category Archives: Handmade

Game Changers

It’s been a busy month (as, errr…is reflected in my blogging activity – sorry guys!) and March has flown by!  However, I’m so very excited to show (and tell) you about some of the reasons for my absence. With all the supplies I’ve acquired (thank you rare and amazing NY closet space) I really decided to go full throttle with Fritz & Fräulein, my vintage redesign biz.

Part 1: I joined The Etsy New York Street Team (no, not a gang of knitting needle wielding ninjas roaming Williamsburg keeping the hipster population in check – well, not yet at least). ; )  The team is an amazingly talented group of handmade Etsy artists from the New York area that meet online and off to share information on everything from markets to sell at to tax tips and supplier recommendations (yes, for my never ending “trim sourcing” quests for the perfect zipper, chain, buckle, leather, whathaveyou) or just attending handmade events like the upcoming Etsy Symposium and an Etsy-focused taping of The Martha Stewart Show.  We also host our own team blog (which I’m a writer for – yay!), Twitter, Facebook and are launching a Pinterest shortly (and you knowww I’ll be a part of that) ; ) to share anything and everything related to the handmade movement and growing a small business. In the short time I’ve been a member, it’s blown me away with how active and helpful this community is that I’m so very proud to be a part of.

Part 2: This leads me to…the fact that I’ve been desperately needing to acquire an industrial sewing machine to replace my sad little home sewer that just isn’t up to snuff to efficiently sew my Garrison Clutches (and soon-to-be released upcycled iPad/laptop sleeve line). I spoke to Parsons, FIT and my old fashion department at Syracuse for advice and then scoured craigslist, the fashion district and spoke to more fast-talking dealers (sewing machine dealers people, sewing machines) than I care to remember. Just when I was totally over the whole search and about to pull the trigger on a used Juki from the least shady dealer I could find, Etsy New York came through. =) Fellow team member, Rosi, from Rosi Rouge, was moving her studio and needed to sell a vintage industrial Singer 95-10 for a steal. I did my research and learned it was one of the original Singers, Made in America on August 5th, 1920 in Elizabeth, NJ (yes, the “need to know” researcher in me actually called Singer with the serial number), is highly regarded in the industry as one of the best machines ever made and still used by designers today, particularly preferred for its “elegant stitch.”  Needless to say, if it ran good, it was recommended that I snatch it up.  After testing it out and being in utter amazement of its gorgeous work and whisper quiet whir, I did. =) Aaand here it is…

I have yet to name her/him but suggestions are welcome.  Maybe this will be the Fritz to my Fräulein (at least for now). =)

Favorite DIYs of Pinterest – March 2012 Edition

As you’ve probably already read, I’m kind of a fan of Pinterest.  Being that DIY is such a hot category (and I’m a DIY pinning addict) I’m going to do a quick roundup of my favorites (that I will do – when i get a moment to breathe – i swear). 😉  I should mention that I like to tweak DIYs to give them my own personal style, so I’ve shared the links to the original DIY and included some of my notes / tips below each photo.  If you’ve done any of these or have any favorite projects, please share and comment with any tips, links or pics. In the meantime, Happy Friday and I hope this inspires you to get your hands creating this weekend.

-Stacy

Studded collar via Atlantic-Pacific (project inspired via Cheetah is the New Black). You can pick up these pyramid studs online at Studs & Spikes or at M&J Trimming here in New York (not available via their online site).  Just make sure you dab a bit of Fray Check around the edges of each hole to prevent the fabric unraveling/studs falling out.

Okay, this isn’t really a DIY but I’m digging around to try and find some ombre how-to instructions for at least a few of these (stay tuned). For now, I will say the petals on the cake are pretty self-explanatory (+ pretty beautious, right?) and can probably be picked up at your local silk florist, Michaels or Hobby Lobby. *Thanks to Decor8 for posting.

For those of us that haven’t fully purged our closet of that favorite too short sweater <<slowly raises hand>>, this DIY is for you.  *Disclaimer: I may try this out first on a Goodwill find before taking my scissors to that pink cashmere. I know, I’m a being a baby.

Puff paint? Spray paint? Redesigning? Amazingness. Who needs Jonathan Adler now? Thank you PS – I Made This.

Even though I don’t decorate in this style, I absolutely loooove this DIY. The instructions can be found here. Make sure to scroll down and read all the add’l tips as it seems this DIY has been a little tricky for some. *I’d like to modernize this somehow…maybe spray paint the doilies with metallic paint to make them look like metal embroidery? Add some small chandelier crystals dangling randomly throughout the interior? Do a cluster of sizes but in the spirit of the bubble lamp? Hmmmmmm…thoughts???

While we all would like to afford beautiful, handcrafted furniture, the reality is IKEA will often have to do for now.  Fortunately, there’s IKEA hacks, such as this that make designing your own unique piece of furniture inexpensive and easy.

I think this is SO simple and gorgeous. You can find the tutorial here. I envision this in pairs on the double doors of a library, an English classroom, but I also can totally see this on my front door, adding a little something to our dreary hallway.  But I’d probably dust the pages in gold powder (shocking). 😉

With Love, From Brooklyn

It’s no secret that I absolutely love supporting and working with the bubbling entrepreneurial community of artists and startups in my little town of Brooklyn.  Needless to say, when I heard about With Love, From Brooklyn (thank you Daily Candy), I didn’t need much convincing.  Darla Furlow is definitely my kind of people, recently launching this online shop selling carefully curated care packages filled with only the best local sweet and salty treats, grouped by theme and shipped to your foodie friends, family or clients.

Of course you could always schlep around the city putting together a care package yourself, but when her baskets don’t break the bank and each product has already been taste-tested by a panel of local food lovers, how can you go wrong?  Check out Darla’s rotating selection of goodies at  With Love, From Brooklyn and let your people outside the borough know where it’s at.

Granny Chic

Who would have predicted what once was only hot on the bingo circuit would become such a long-staying trend?  Knitting, crocheting, quilting, doily’ing (errr..?). Until recently, these words probably brought to mind those not-no-chic, cringe-worthy gifts from your childhood (three armed sweater anyone?).  Today, Gramma’s crafts have turned into one of the biggest trends to hit the design world.  With the revival of the handmade movement over the past several years + the comfort these sorts of materials have brought through these not-so-fun times, Granny Chic has infiltrated all aspects of product design.  You can find it in interiors, with these cute, knitted ottoman poufs from CB2:

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CB2 Knitted Poufs in GraphiteCamoPool, & Blood Orange (online only), $79.95-$89.95. Available in store or online.

Or you can go modern handmade and snatch up these upcycled doily-laden pillows and crochet Kindle cases from Betsy Bell:

Rockin' Grandma Vintage Doily Cushion Cover

Granny Chic Throw Pillows (available in a variety of colors and sizes/also does custom orders), $32-$38/each

Eco-friendly Kindle Snug with Tassles - Chunky Crochet - 100% Peruvian Wool

Eco-friendly Kindle Snug with Tassles (available in 12 colors/also does custom orders), $26

If you need to get organized, go for some vintage crocheted hangers from our own Fritz & Fräulein shop:
Crocheted Wooden Hangers - Blue, Cream, Green, Turquoise and Red Split (set of 3)

Vintage Crocheted Wooden Hangers (wide variety of colors) $9-$18/set

Or add a cute, retro touch with these LOVE yarn stitched coasters:

Coaster Set - LOVE Coasters

LOVE Coaster Set, $14

If you’re looking for a unique (and super cute) handmade gift, check out Skunkboy Creatures. She hand stitches every plush item, including the most adorable ornaments, larger plush animals and amazing custom cake toppers.

Image of Penguin Ornament  Image of Custom Blue Bird

Image of Laying Fawn

Image of Custom Bunny Wedding Cake Toppers

Penguin Ornament, $40; Blue Bird, $75; Laying Fawn, $200; Bunny Cake Toppers, $100.

Maybe fashion’s more your game? Be super chic with the Dublin knitted handbag from Gerard Darel, the designer French women and celebs alike (Angelina Jolie, Halle Berry) flock to for his classic styles.

24 heures Dublin

Gerard Darel 24 Heure Dublin350 €. Available in store (France only) or via gerarddarel.com.

If you’re not ready to hop the pond and drop that kind of coin, you can always pick up a lace shirt or Granny-inspired sweater, at retailers like Zara or American Apparel.

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Silk Lace T-Shirt, Zara, $25.90

Sweater, Zara. *photo courtesy of atlantic-pacific.blogspot.com

So whether it’s home goods, accessories or fashion, pick your poison and insert some Granny Chic into your life. Gram would indeed be proud.