Monday, November 21, 2011

Making Holiday Gifts

Required Supplies: Three crafty gals and a rainy day

Supplies are gathered. Treats are important too... and even more scrumptious when they come from Italy!

Tracing, sewing, assembling, cutting....

Filling with fluff and good smells....

We've made you a gift....

..which you will receive if you shop in our store or in our webstore starting on Black Friday, Nov 25th,  "Small Business Saturday",  Nov 26th,  through "Cyber Monday",  Nov 28th.

Our Thanksgiving weekend hours are HERE.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Christmas Tree Napkin Tutorial

Here's what you'll needed for 4 napkins:
Four complimentary 20"x20" washed and cut cotton squares
Cutting, ironing and marking supplies
19" diameter template (I made mine just a quarter circle from scrap cardboard)
Serger - or sewing machine that can sew a finishing stitch

For each 20"x20" square...

Using 2 complimentary fabrics, sew down the length...

Grab your washable or disappearing marker....

If you don't have a serger, you can use your sewing machine to make a finishing stitch (like a zig-zag stitch), with the excess fabric cut off.  The idea is to give the edge a bit of a "rough" look that will become more ruffly as the napkin is washed.

and you have....

It's a bit of Christmas magic....

p.s.  We sell our pre-washed and cut 20"x20" fabric squares in the store.

Fabrics used are (l to r):  Tiny Trees, Mini Harlequin, Deck the Halls, That's All Stripe

Saturday, November 12, 2011

A Thankfully Simple Tablesetting

Enjoying the Warmth of Autumn

Apples, pumpkins and fall leaves...

Napkins in fall colors and prints...

Branches of dried maple leaves make an easy and colorful centerpiece.

This is the time of year Monarch Butterflies visit our Central Coast.

More critters grace the table.  These adorable candles are from the Pottery Barn sale table.

Gathering nuts for winter...

Gathered and stored!

Rainy weather justifies even more time for crafting....

Now we have felt leaf garland to grace our front window...

For more Thanksgiving craft inspiration, the blog, A Sewing Journal has complied some great ones here: "Sewing Inspiration: Thanksgiving".

Happy crafting, feasting, and setting your Thanksgiving table!

Links: Fall Napkins, Monarch Butterflies, Pottery Barn Critter Candles, A Sewing Journal's "Sewing Inspiration: Thanksgiving"

Sunday, October 30, 2011

The Junk Girls

Accessorize your Table

We are enamored with the re-purposed silverware creations of local artisans, The Junk Girls.  In particular, we are loving their treasures for the table.

Here are some of their wonderful products we are currently carrying at Picking Daisies.

Food and Plant Decorative Stakes with a Special Message
Tablecloth Weights - Available in Fork Tines and Silverware Handles
Bottle Charms with a Message
Oh! And these great Cheese Markers...  we have these too!

Do you want to see more of The Junk Girls?  Click on their logo below to visit their website.

Come by Picking Daisies to see these products up close and in person.  They are so well crafted, unique and creative.  We think you will love them too!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Home Sewn Pumpkin

In the Mood for Fall

Bolts of fabric are arriving so quickly that we cannot keep up with processing them and getting them online -  let alone, sewing them into napkins.

But we did carve  ...ha ha ha... out some time to make a pumpkin!

 We had just the perfect fabric:  Twirling Tendrils in Orange

 We embroidered little veins into the felt leaves and don't you love the look of the finished leaves?

Rice in the base and embroidery string wrapped around gives the pumpkin a perfectly lumpy fat shape.

You can make one just like it by following this tutorial from  pinksuedeshoe "Fall Pumpkin Tutorial"

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Custom Tablecloths, Runners and Placemats

A Fabulous Selection of Fabric for your Custom Orders!

In addition to selling our napkins and fabric, we offer custom tablecloths, table runners and placemats.  You pick the fabric and size, we'll do the rest.

The size and price details are on our website here.
If you are interested in more information, or to place an order, just email us.

Halloween Table Setting

A Spooky Setting for Halloween

We'll help you decorate the table ...  just add your cauldron of food!

We have the best Halloween napkins.

We'll show you how to make little ghosts for your table using tootsie pops, coaster napkins, and a dash of lightening.

Candles and Candy Corn are required.  Spiders are optional.

Pass around some Scarecrow ale...

....and Pumpkin Spiced Cider.

Dried stalks from the plant known as "Pumpkin on a Stick" make the perfect fall bouquet.

Set aside your broom, take off your hat, and join us for a spooky celebration.

Inspiration:  Picking Daisies Halloween Napkins, Picnik photo editing effects, Pumpkin on a Stick

Saturday, October 15, 2011

An Italian Cookbook - Buon Appetito

La Cucina DiMambro

Available at Picking Daisies through the holidays... this wonderful Italian Cookbook.

It's filled with family history and family recipes.

YUMMY Italian authenticity!

Even lessons in napkin folding, much to our delight.

From the author....

Author Gisella Capraro-Kaplan

Gisella Capraro-Kaplan is a first generation Italian. She was born in Cassino, Italy in 1964 and immigrated to the United States in 1967 at the age of 3.5.  Her family settled in the suburbs of Detroit where she lived in very middle class non-Italian neighborhoods.  Her upbringing, however, was very much Italian.  Eating pasta every night at dinner was normal.  Her parents spoke very broken English to the rest of the world and only Italian in the house. 

After college she returned to Italy to reconnect with her Italian roots and spent a year with her maternal grandparents.  It was during this time that a seed was planted for the love of Italian cooking and cuisine. Returning to the U.S., she left Michigan and started a life in California.  She met her husband, Craig Kaplan, they were married in 1990 and moved to the Central Coast where they built a life and a family.  In 2008 an new job for Craig moved the family to Orange County, California.

Gisella and Craig have two daughters, Adriana and Daniella.  It was in the process of raising their daughters that she became aware of the richness in the traditions that she experienced as a child; in many, if not all of those experiences, food was a very important part.  Over the years many phone calls were made to her mother wanting to know what the recipe for this dish or that meal was.  As her daughters got older she began to realize that those recipes may get lost forever if 'someone' didn’t write them down.  So the process was begun of collecting family recipes.  The cookbook was never intended to be sold or given to anyone outside of the family but as word spread of its inception many people started to inquire about getting a copy.  One thing lead to another and the cookbook was created with the intention of selling it.  

“I was quite surprised at the initial interest people had in wanting to purchase our family recipes", Gisella said. 

As a result of putting together this cookbook, Gisella discovered her true passion is to become a chef.  Culinary school awaits her as she embarks on a new career and one day hopes to open an Italian Bakery/Market and maybe even expanding it to a full restaurant.  

Enjoy the simplicity of La Cucina DiMambro (DiMambro is her mother’s maiden name) and know that it comes with a lot of heritage, tradition and memories. 

Buon Appetito!