Monday, June 27, 2011

Show and Tell

I sometimes lament that the items I make usually just go away never to be seen or heard from again.  Making some of the handmade baby items especially feels a little like raising a child and then sending it off into the world to do good.  Although I still do make a lot of gifts for friends, I just don't often get to see my items being worn or used unless it's something I've made for my own daughter.  Usually, she's the only model I have for whether or not something I make looks good.  And I'll go ahead and admit that I'm biased on that one!

But I got lucky this past week when a friend posted a picture of her sweet little one-week-old daughter, Emorie, for me to see her in her special monogrammed onesie.

I could just sop her up with a biscuit.

So if you ever buy anything, I'd love to see it in use via a picture!  Tag With Pin and Ink on facebook, or shoot me an email at  

And if you want to buy a monogrammed onesie for a special little one in your life, they're just $9.00 plus $3.00 shipping and handling; they come in size NB - 12 months, and are 100% cotton.

Just promise that you'll send me a postcard or two ;-)

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Looking for a Good Time?


I'm not suggesting a messy entanglement that will result in your shameful resignation from public office, just a fun night with your friends, drinking wine and learning a new craft technique!

Join me at Coffee to a Tea in Greenville's West End Market (Right below Smoke on the Water) on July 21 from 6:00 - 8:00pm for a fun demonstration on freezer paper stenciling. For just $25.00, I'll teach you the technique, and then set you free to create your very own t-shirt! I'll be there to talk you through the any scary parts! Because this is a privately hosted event, those 21+ may feel free to bring a bottle of wine to enjoy as we work on our creations!  Light refreshments and all other supplies will be provided.

Please be sure to include your shirt size (S-XXL) in the notes box during check out!

Remember: Online Registration will be available from now until noon on July 18, 2011.  Cancellations require a 48-hour notice to receive a full refund.

Space is limited, so don't wait - sign up today!!!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Inspiration: Big O

So, last August, O Magazine had an issue which touted itself as "THE BIG DEALS ISSUE". It was all about rocking the deals (because we are in a recession, y'all) and featured Oprah on the cover, as per usual, rocking an outfit with the headline "EVERYTHING OPRAH'S WEARING IS UNDER $100!" (Emphasis O Mag's) See?

What that sounds like is that Oprah's outfit, top to bottom, cost less than $100. But when you look a little closer, you start seeing all the individual prices of things. $80 for pants. $70 each for the shirt and sweater. $69 dollars for her shoes and a whopping $53 for her belt. The total cost for Oprah's look from head to toe?

Right about $600.

Now, I don't know about you, but recession or not, I don't have any $600 outfits at my house. In fact, my two wedding dresses PUT TOGETHER wouldn't even cost $600. Not even close. So last year I got it in my mind that not only was I going to get Oprah's look for less, I was going to get it for WAY less than the big fat lie of a title of being "Under $100."   And I finally decided that today was the day I'd put it all together, because I knew the ladies I work with would think it was hilarious that I had given myself a blog assignment based on an O Magazine cover.  Plus, I needed someone to take the photos. 

So how'd I do? You tell me.

Sweater: Target - $14.99; Shirt: Old Navy - $9.99; Belt:  Poppy Pia - $5.99; Bracelets:  H&M - @$6.99 for a million; Pants:  Old Navy - $7.99 and Shoes:  Payless - $12.99.  My earrings were in my drawer, so they were free.  I don't wear rings or watches, but I have them, so they would be free, too.  So while Oprah's grand total was somewhere around $600,  mine is about $60.  That's right:  I have a 90% savings.

Now THAT is a Big Deal!

Now, why does this belong here, on my craft blog?  Because I had to alter those pants, y'all!!!

You remember when you were in 5th grade and Gitano jeans were out and they had those RADICAL zippers on the sides to make your little elementary school stick legs look even stickier?  Well, Old Navy had apparently been drinking some Kool-Aid and watching Rainbow Brite reruns when they designed these dove gray pants with a zipper leg.  And while I'm so totally down with retro clothes, they are not always down with me.  I am long waisted and short-legged, so what is an awesome zipper ankle feature to some is a ridiculously long problem to me.  So, using my handy, dandy seam ripper, I simply performed a little surgery on my retro, straight leg, zipper ankle having pants!  And let me tell you - it worked like a dang charm.  Once I got the zipper out, all I had to do was put on the pants and measure to where I wanted them, create a seam allowance for the hem, and then I was able to hem them and still get the little vent that Oprah's $80 pants have on the side.

And I go into all this to say that you don't always have to spend haute couture money on items just because Vanity Fair says you should have something.  Find something that's close and make it closer.  I've ended up wearing the heck out of these pants over the last year and I NEVER would have worn them with a zipper!  They would've been delegated to "Inside of boots pants" and never met their full potential.  So go through those closets and drawers today and think of what you don't wear anymore as a blank canvas before you get rid of it.  You might just find that it works perfectly with a little tweaking!

Saturday, June 18, 2011


The Friends of the Library had a sidewalk sale this morning that the toddler and I went to check out hoping for some awesome DVD discards. Not much luck on the DVD front, but I racked up with reading material to fuel my pin and inky brains! Sure, it's all 2 years old, but there is no telling what I might find that's new to me! The best part is that all these only cost $1.50. Not bad when the "threads" magazine alone originally retailed at $6.99.

Now I just need time to read them. Lol

Friday, June 17, 2011

Help Out!

I still have a couple of more weeks left before I send my final check to Temporary Emergency Services in Tuscaloosa, Alabama for their tornado relief efforts.  If you know an Alabama fan, or you just want to support the people in that devastated area, please consider buying a garden flag today! It's easier than ever using PayPal today!


Inspiration: TLC

Have you ever just gotten into a groove of doing things so well that it was hard to pull yourself out of it to complete another task?  I find this happens to me a lot.  I like to think it's my artistic temperament shining through.  I mean, famous artists had "periods" all the time.  Most of them were associated with color.  Like Picasso's "Blue Period."  But not me.  Mine are texture periods.  I have been heavily into a "woven textile" period lately which means I just want to stay chained to the sewing machine.  It matters not that there are people waiting on graphically designed items.  I can't think in that mode because I'm all about the pin. 

It's been so much about the pin, that I can't even seem to get myself to a computer to write about most of the things I've been making!  Part of my posting tardiness comes from the fact that I started a new job about 2.5 weeks ago at a print shop, so I guess most of my "ink" needs are being currently fed by playing every day with copiers and plotters and the ancient, behemouth, industrial paper cutter.  But rest assured that I have been super busy making this and that, trying to come up with my own patterns for things so that you can buy the stuff you see here and so that all the crafty goodness will leave me alone and let me sleep at night instead of dancing around giving me dreams of fabric swatches and the ways that I should construct things.

I want to share with you right now a little inspiration that I have picked up from my mindless television watching.  Can I just tell you how confused I am by what has happened to The Learning Channel?  It used to be wedding story, baby story and shows about the body - sort of a "Discovery Channel Lite."  I'm pretty sure these days, though, that "TLC" stands for "THAT LOOKS CRAZY!"  People who eat cornstartch and foam padding?  What???  People who are enormously fat and in love???  People who have huge "members"!!?!?!?  Hoarders!!  Little People!!!!  Washed Out Having Too Many Kids!!!!!!  Big Brides!  Little Brides! Lots of Brides and One Husband!!! Hoochie Babies!!!!

Whose reality is this channel portraying, anyway??? 

And I say all this yet I can NOT stop watching.  It is like all the best train wrecks all on one channel.  Seriously - if Bravo would give TLC the Housewives franchise, I'd be all set to watch that one channel for all my "At least I'm not them!" needs!

But my latest favorite has GOT to be the UK import show, "My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding."

Because hoochie babies and dramatic brides were awesome separately, so they MUST be gonna rock together!

If you don't know what I'm talking about, thank your lucky stars or go immediately and hit up Google for the 411.  Because it is taking a toll on the way I look at fashion, and I'm already formulating some great ideas that I hope you'll see here soon based on the images this show produces.  For example:

This reminds me of my favorite Elton John song: "Hold me close now, Tiny Stripper..."

Ruffles and a bedazzled heart, anyone?

I do love to see hats making a comeback, but maybe not the ones from "Moulin Rouge." 

Someone just couldn't pick a favorite color with these dresses.

And finally, the ever classy corseted back with big bow on the bustle.  Which we actually have seen in more recent fashion!!!  And of all these color combos, the black and pink is fairly classy.  Go figure.

So what on earth - you must be wondering - is my inspiration from these things?  Am I seriously about to start dressing my toddler in a stripper suit and bedazzling 1980's era prom gowns?

I'm seriously not into stripper toddlers, BUT I am into some of the shapes.  The ruffles.  The bows.  The extraneous details that take the dresses from being ridiculous to "straight up redonkulous."  Everyone likes to have something that is just a little bit "too much" sometimes, right?  And let's all face it:  These chicks are all dressed like at least one of your Barbie dolls from 1983.  Right?  See??

  We're conditioned to love this type of absurd showy style. 

So I'm going to channel my inner gypsy/Barbie-lover and see what happens.  I'm kind of excited. 

And maybe a little scared.

If anyone sees the toddler in a stripper suit...take me down.