to celebrate the publication of my new book


Our colorful 1751 farmhouse will be open to the public. On view will be many of the projects that are featured in Crafting A Pattern Home along with many other things I have made over the years.

This event will be a celebration of the handmade. I hope the day will inspire you to add some pattern and color to your home.

The event is FREE. Books will be available along with some other things I have made. For more information and directions, see the EVENTBRITE PAGE HERE. Although tickets are not mandatory, it will help me get a count to know what to expect. Hope to see you here in western Massachusetts in May.

Friday, January 07, 2011

Short Days

I am relieved the holidays are over and life can return to a somewhat normal, slower pace. From the late spring, through the summer and into the fall, we run, run, run to get everything done. From the Farmers Markets, to the sheep, to the sunflowers, to the library.... the days are long and it is easy to just keep running from chore to chore, venue to venue.

And then December comes and the days are frightfully short. It seems like it is impossible to get anything done before the sun is low in the sky and gone. I'm sure that is one reason the holidays happen when they do --- it gives us something to do here in the northern hemisphere when there is no sun shining or crops growing. A chance to catch up with family and friends.

January is a wonderful month for catching up. Catching up on the piles of magazines and books that have gone unread, watching those movies that have been recommended by friends, and knitting - lots and lots of knitting and ideas for projects germinating. Add to that the seed catalogs that come in and the dark days are filled. I'm even making myself sit down and read the NYTimes on Wednesdays and Thursdays. Those are my favorite days - Food and House and Home. This week's NYTimes had an article by Andre Aciman that made me cry - thinking of what is to come in a few years when Julia is off on her own. Read it if you have the chance.

Another gem I'd like to share (from the NYT) is this new find - Saffron Marigold, an importer of Indian fabrics made into bedspreads, shower curtains, table linens and more. There are some lovely patterns and some nice bright colors. I used to find lots of good Indian bedspreads at Urban Outfitters but sadly they have gone in another direction (most of the prints are way too hip (ok, just plain ugly for me). U.O. - bring back some nice prints PLEASE! I bought this bedspread last summer there and used it for the backdrop for one of my patterns. Sadly, it is gone now from their pages but at least I got it when it was available!

Over the years, I have amassed quite a collection of Indian bedspreads - some from flea markets, some new. The new ones fade to a lovely antique look in several washings. I find them incredibly useful as tablecloths. They go to all the Farmers Markets with us. I've made them into duvet covers (a different print on each side giving me two choices to rotate on the beds). I cover our daybed in a different design each week. And of course, they work great as props for photo shoots. Does anyone know of any other good sources on the web for Indian bedspreads? I'd love to hear!

We're expecting a smallish snowstorm here this weekend. Hope to get some nice sheep photos in the snow! Good weekend everyone.


Mia said...

Although this is not "on the web," I know you live in Western MA--have you tried "The Mercantile" in Amherst? It is in a plaza near the small yarn store in downtown Amherst, and they used to at least have a great selection of bedspreads, along with lots of other hippy, funky stuff! Fun store for poking around...

Kathy said...

Kristin, Don't despair about Julia leaving home! It will be okay. When my children were getting ready to leave for college I wept off and on for weeks. Saying good by was wrenching, and I cried when I talked with them on the phone. But after a month or so I realized I liked the quiet in our house, I liked not having to lie awake at night waiting for them to return home, I liked not having the responsibility to make dinner every night, clean up after other people, or constantly shop for snacks. My son has type 1 diabetes, so having him away from home was especially frightening, but he's a responsible, resourceful kid, and he manages his disease well.
I love when my kids come home, and I am sorry to see them leave, but life seems ok without them in the house all the time. They love me, and they like coming back!

Wooly Knits n Bits said...

Beautiful article Kristin. I do also feel such joy when the house is full and noisy and busy. But they are now starting their own families and the cycle continues.
On the upside, I get to learn all about me again!

BaileyGirl5 said...

Thanks for sharing that article. It made me very wistful. My youngest is home on his winter break from college now and I love having the house full of his energy and music again. I miss him when he is at school but I'm so thrilled with all the great life experiences he is having. Ahhh .... why do they grow up so fast?

karen said...

Even though I had five children I cried each time one left for college especially the last one.However my husband have gotten to do some tings we just couldn't do in the past.

We love when they all come home with the grand children, but love when they leave!!

Ronnie said...

I'm always a sucker for an empty nest piece. Thanks for sharing that. Preparing for my youngest to leave...again.

John'aLee said...

I've just spent the last hour going through your blog and website and am so impressed! What an amazing designer you are. Love your sheep farm and your way of life.
Keep up the great work!

India said...

That article is so poignant. My elder son gets on a plane tomorrow for five months in Italy; I've never gone that long without seeing him (thank goodness for Skype!). My heart is breaking at the farewell to come but full as I think about what's ahead for him. He's a junior in college so I am pretty accustomed now to saying good bye, and even enjoying the "new" normal of him not being home. But it's hard every time! And I'm still rehearsing--my younger son is a high school freshman, so I will be doing this all over again soon. And yet, I do relish the quieter life for my husband and me, just as I relish the noise and activity when my boys are both home. Oh--I made my son a scarf for Christmas, so each time he wraps it around his neck, when he's far across the ocean, I'll be able to give him a "hug"!

Anonymous said...

I love Indian bedspreads too, and yes, they're much harder to find than they were in back in the day, when Cost Plus had a whole wall full of them. I hope someone can tip us off to a good source!
-- Gretchen

Anonymous said...

Hi Kristin,
I'm a fan of Saffron Marigold, but lately I've been shopping online at Full Moon Loom. Just google them. They have LOTS of Indian style bedspreads, and I just ordered a king size "Bohemian" print bedspread for 30 bucks, and hope it turns out to be just what I wanted. They also have duvet covers, curtains, wall hangings, cushion covers, and clothing. Most of their stuff is cotton/cotton blends. It will bring out the hippie in you if you check out their stuff.
Love your blog!

JenBerry said...

I love Saffron Marigold! Just ordered bedroom curtains in their Paisley Fraiche and can't wait to see them hung in our bedroom :)