Flowers and Fruit

comments: 113

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My favorite part of summer is now, I think, when everything is still green and plump and hasn't been frizzled to a hollow. Barbecues with old friends, and baby is crawling. We spend our time together walking, or I ride my bike on the sidewalk so we can go as far as we want without my foot getting angry. Up and down the streets, past house after house and garden after garden. This is my favorite thing. The winding. The talking. He says we can go anywhere — and as far as — I want. Ending up at a restaurant, the bead store (yep, working on a new ornament kit), a pie shop. On and on. Amelia is so game. Amelia goes everywhere, does everything, and takes it all in with this placid, happy-go-lucky way she has. There's a sparkle in her eyes, but she is mellow yellow. There are no moments where I do not marvel at this quality. Knawing on her kitty, waving her foot up and down, she's watching. She shows me her bottle cap, her little deer. I like it. I kiss it, her. We rub noses. I ride in front, zig-zagging, about to fall off going two miles an hour and trying not to crash into everyone's rose bushes. Mommy the goofball. Andy buys a guitar made out of a cigar box and puts it on top of the stroller. Can't resist playing it while he walks. We're the ragtag parade, carrying a ten-pound sweet-cream raspberry pie and a stolen daisy.

By the way, brunch at the Woodsman was a delight in every possible way. I had pancakes and very strong coffee and I was about as happy as anyone's ever been about anything, I think.

I told you I'd tell you about Amelia's midsummer dress. It was inspired by a traditional Norwegian bunad, or folk costume. Each region has its own style of dress. Amelia's birthfather is three-quarters Norwegian, and his family is from the Dovre region of Norway. The dovrebunader, like this one and this one, are just so gorgeous. I have always loved these, so I was ridiculously excited to make her her own baby version. I made the pattern by tracing the bodice pieces of one of her basic little dresses from H&M, and then added a skirt that was 10" long by 44" wide. For the embroidery, I used the traditional dandelion-like design on the dovrebunader, and then just chose two other random designs from one of my clip art books. I traced everything onto copy paper and made a copy onto a special paper called Transfer-Eze. This stuff is VERY COOL. When you peel the top (printed) layer of the paper off of the heavy paper behind it, the top layer has a sticky backing. You press that smoothly to your fabric, then hoop it, and embroider away, right through the Transfer-Eze. (See the photo of my embroidery-in-progress in this post.) When I finished the embroidery, I cut out the bodice (adding a seam allowance) and then soaked the whole thing in cool water for just a few minutes. The Transfer-Eze dissolved and disappeared without any problem at all. It was wonderful to use, especially since transfering is kind of a pain, especially on dark colored fabrics. This was my first time using this and I will definitely use it again. The only thing I noticed is that my hand and fingers were a little bit sore after I worked these pieces; you do have to push the needle a bit harder as you stitch, but it's not too bad. I was doing a lot of satin stitch in a pretty short span of time. I haven't really looked into who manufactures this product but maybe I will try to carry it in my web shop because it is pretty awesome. I'll let you know if I do. Anyway, I thought the little dress came out very pretty and it was really cool to make something by pulling together parts and pieces of inspiration.

I also finished her midsummer sweater, and just have to put the buttons on. I think this is the first time I've ever done anything in reverse stockinette. Kinda cute. I think the yoke looks too deep, but maybe I'm wrong. I'll put the buttons (covered, I think, in Liberty lawn) on today and try it on her and see. It's cold and chilly today, so this will be good.

In our yard the rose mallow is blooming, and the hydrangeas are just starting. The apple tree had three tiny green apples but they all fell off already. We built a little teepee (using this tutorial — really easy, really fast, really inexpensive) on Saturday afternoon when it was still sunny and gorgeous. She played in it for a while, though it got kind of hot; there was no breeze, especially in the teepee. After Amelia went to bed, I sat out in the yard and ate pie and watched the darkness arrive and pretty much became infatuated with the teepee at dusk. So far we haven't really used our backyard lights that much because it stays light so late right now, and I can't stay awake! But I stayed out Saturday night and it was worth it. Oh, how I do love a good ambient light source!!! It's sooooo romantic back there now. We had the lights done by this company. I basically told them what I wanted — two strands of light bulbs crossing over the seating area, hardwired into a dimmer switch on the garage wall — and they did the whole thing (even more romantic). I don't fool around with electricity, and I knew we wanted this to be permanent. Neither do I have the details about the cord because Chris the electrician provided that, but it was twisted black and brown, and what I liked about it was that he was able to put the lights into it only and exactly where we wanted them — right over the chairs, and not down the entire length of the cord as they stretch from the corners of the garage to the pergola thing, and then across to the fence (they added a little 2" x 2" board so the cord would connect at the right height). The bulbs are 40 watt clear appliance bulbs. The dimmer is fantastic. I'm really pleased with how this came out. Now we just need to drink some coffee after dinner so I can stay awake and enjoy it.

Oh, and the other outdoor wicker pendant we have over the table we've had for several years, and it just plugs into an extension cord. I think it's like this one.

I did wind up ordering a battery-powered lantern for the teepee, too.

What else. I'm playing catch up today. I sincerely apologize to anyone who is waiting for me to answer an email. I am not good at this and the email just keeps piling up and up.

Wimbledon starts today. Yippee! Does anyone know the name of that little daisy-like plant (feverfew — thank you!), and the pink frothy one (spirea — thanks!)? Those were out in the neighborhood somewhere, but I'd love to plant both of them. Pretty.

***My tablecloth is from Powell's Books for Cooks; the teepee cover cloth is from eBay or Etsy; our bedding is from Pottery Barn; I made my skirt several years ago from cotton calico (don't know the name of it — I'm sorry); and I think the pillow cover was from Pottery Barn a few years ago, too.

113 comments

Back Yard Teepee & lights are just Gorgeous,and baby girl,is just too cute, priceless!!! I'm curious, what's in that basket??

Jennifer B says: June 24, 2013 at 02:45 PM

All that talk of the midsommer dress for your daughter and not a single picture of the current progress? I'd love to see it.....

Love the dress! Love the teepee! And the pie looks delish! Really love the pea gravel in your back yard seating area. Am thinking I want to do that in several places in our yard, as it would cut down on the mowing and especially the watering! Wish we were still having cool days! None expected until about November! Blessings to you and your sweet family!!

Just wanted to say how much your blog means to me. You are living a dreamy life, inspiring others to do the same. I did a little ode today, in honor of you and others who have made my life better.

xo,
Lacy

http://www.livingonloveblog.com/2013/06/what-we-do-it-matters-to-me.html

Thank you for your posting...I get all teary and my heart gets squished with the amount of love and joy you have in your life...Grateful that you are so blessed...

Everything is so pretty!

Love, love the teepee. And visualizing you riding your bike, mr posie playing the cigar banjo, little one strolling along with the two of you, with her sparkly, taking it all in eyes, the family having the best parade ever, . . . warmed my heart. It is so delightful to follow you.

(I am changing to Bloglovin, plus a new iPad and haven't been able to leave a comment . . . So I am here on my old pad and trying again. If this arrives to you twice you'll know I really enjoy all the Posie happenings!)

auntie m says: June 24, 2013 at 03:26 PM

Just once this summer I might have to wander across the river to snag one of those pies for dinner. Main course!
It's great fun watching your little angel baby grow. What a ripe little peach she is.
And feverfew...it tends to take over the garden. Easy to pull out though when you decide enough is enough.

Gretchen says: June 24, 2013 at 03:30 PM

Oh my, coral is Amelia's color. She looks so beautiful and bright in it. I do wish I could come and sit in your yard!

Ha! I was going to comment on the feverfew, then kept reading and saw your question/answer. I let it go crazy in our backyard, the same way I do with forget-me-nots. They are so pretty, filly in any empty spots, and reseed so freely that I have no regrets about yanking them up when they are spent.

Lovely pictures, I have bad knees but love to walk. With the Grandkids visiting I think I will get a bike to ride with them. Maybe it will work. Thanks.

That dress is wonderful, Alicia - and you figured it all out yourself. Ah. A silken tent for the little one - I want one. And, the cat sniffing the stuffed cat, is awfully cute.
(oh, that pie shop!)

Your writing ["...We're the ragtag parade, carrying a ten-pound sweet-cream raspberry pie and a stolen daisy." as an example.] is sublime and as evocative as your style and photography.

Your life, sublime.

This new form of online book writing suits!

Alicia....

Your blog, your world, is like tonic for the soul.

Thank you for sharing.

I miss you madly in between posts, you should know :)

Teepee and kitties, real and stuffed, plus a darn gorgeous baby, well. Does it really get any better?

Me thinks...
Nah.


But wait! Throw in Andy and puppers and pies and cakes for good measure (and endless bike rides), and the goodness overflows!


I should say though, the garden light switchy thingamabob sounds major fab.

Your happiness and full heart...Palpable.

You are a beautiful mama.

xoxo

so many pretty things! first and foremost, i must comment on how appropriate it is the andy is wearing some minnetonka-like moccasins! excellent! it must have worked a charm as the teepee is super cute...for any age. (me) as well, the sweater is lovely as is the little lady who will be wearing it. but that kitty! oh my, is that something you whipped up? so cute...your yard looks in full bloom and to have pie while sitting in it, well it just doesn't get better than that does is?

How fun for Amelia to have her very own teepee! So darling! I love your outdoor lights. So romantic and beautiful! That pie looks very yummy...:)

Happy Monday!

xoxo...Gloria

Lovely post. Your little girl is adorable....what a blessing to you both!

Blessings,
Nadine

That is the prettiest picture of Amelia!

Teepee yes please, beautiful pie yes please, gentleman in the pie shop yes please, the gorgeous brickwork around your home yes please. And beautiful baby in her sweet orange dress. Blessings for each of your days. Love.

Oh, I so love your yard....and your Andy....and your pets....and just everything in it! And when that first pic of Amelia scrolled up, I smiled so big. That is my favorite picture of that angel so far. She's got that "I know what you're doing" look on her face. Give her a big kiss for me.

xo Linda

So beautiful! So magical! What an inspiration you are!!

Danielle says: June 24, 2013 at 09:27 PM

Gorgeous photos. I was wondering about the name of the bush with the pink and white flowers that you have next to the teepee. I love it and would love to grow it here in Bellingham, WA.

The feverfew spreads. It's doing really well here in Colorado in dappled sun/mostly shade. Our sun here is very strong, but I would think you could grow it in a sunny spot there. Seeing all the green there in Oregon just makes my heart ache. I miss my two siblings--one in Eugene and one in Portland. I always think when I go there that it looks like Ireland it's so green! Love reading your blog and can't wait to get started on Maggie the Rabbit here soon.

So many pretty things and your bay is absolutely or groups.what a blessing to have her in your leg. If you don't mind could you tell me which picture camera do you use? I just love the lighting and ow the colors are just so real it almost looks 3d, I love it!

Oh the teepee is just adorable. We have a little pink flower tent that we love to fill with quilts and cushions and Duplo for summer playtime, and it's coming to the beach too.

And transfer-eze - wow, double wow and yes please nicely to stocking it! Amelia's dress was stunningly beautiful, and even more special for honouring her roots.

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About Alicia Paulson

About

My name is Alicia Paulson
and I love to make things. I live with my husband and daughter in Portland, Oregon, and design sewing, embroidery, knitting, and crochet patterns. See more about me at aliciapaulson.com

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Photography

Since August of 2011 I've been using a Canon EOS 60D with an EF 18-200mm kit lens and an EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro lens.