Holiday Shopping Event Count Down!

The count down is on!

Last Week Ad - Fri & Sat Only

Audrey Would!’s first ever Holiday Shopping event is just a mere few days away! You can look forward to:

  • ‘Pick Your Ticket Savings’
  • Door prize draw for a gift basket filled with vintage goodies and local-fare treats
  • Cocktails by Clemens on Friday night featuring two of his favourite classic cocktails
  • Lots of festive, glam, and classic not-yet-listed pieces to browse!

BAR-1085-SZ Libbey Nutcracker Bar Glasses (x4) (1)


 

A portion of all event proceeds will be going to Toys, Toiletries & Toques so we can do our part to help others have a wonderful Holiday Season, too.

 


 

Don’t forget about Providence Farm’s Christmas Craft Fair on Saturday, and Kuz at Woodcote just down the street! This is the weekend to SHOP Maple Bay!

Find Audrey Would! (located near Maple Bay Elementary School) 

Looking forward to seeing you!

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DIY Advent Calendar With Vintage Supplies

Advent calendar time is almost here – are you counting down? If you still want to create a calendar, it’s not too late… you might even want to check out this collection for 25 more ideas and inspiration! Earlier last week I promised I would have one more calendar to share, so here we go.

You might remember some of my projects created from vintage upholstery webbing. If not, you can find a tabletop planter and a magazine rack here.

Below is a photo collage of the grow chart I made for the little calendar recipient, too… thank you to Whipperberry blog for the great idea and tutorial!

Art Project Collage

So in keeping with the repurposed vintage webbing theme, here is how I made the Advent calendar!

1. Gather Supplies

Upholstery Webbing Advent Calendar - Materials

  • Fabric, enough for the calendar including seam allowance (approx. 24″ W x 38″ L) and pockets including seam allowance (approx. 24″ W x 25″ L)
  • Note, finished calendar size was 22″ W x 36 L; finished pocket strips were 22″ W x 4″ L
  • Upholstery webbing, 87.50″ minimum length (25 squares, each 3.5″ x 3.5″)
  • Number Stencils, 1″ tall
  • Permanent Black Felt Sharpie, fine tip
  • 5/8″ Dowling, 23″ long
  • Seam Binding, 1″ wide
  • Thread (to match webbing, and to match fabric)
  • Draft pattern of desired number layout

Step 2: Square Fabric and cut Webbing Squares for Pockets

I squared the fabric and cut it to size leaving an extra 1″all around for seam allowance. I then cut 25 squares of webbing, 3.5″ x 3.5″ – the actual width of the webbing was 3.5″, so that was my guide for the size of the squares.

Upholstery Webbing Advent Calendar - Pocket Layout

Step 3: Stencil Numbers onto Webbing Squares; Cut pocket strips

Each square was stenciled with a number between 1 and 25 using a black felt Sharpie pen. Fabric strips were cut to create the actual pockets with.

Upholstery Webbing Advent Calendar - Pockets & Backing

Step 4: Prep edges of Pocket Strips; Hem top edge of each

The long edges of the fabric strips were folded over 1/4″, ironed, folded another 1/4″ and the top edge hemmed.

Upholstery Webbing Advent Calendar - Pocket Backing

Note, the sides were folded over just once at a 1/2″ and they were tucked inside each of the long edges. Then the top edge was hemmed, and the bottom edge remained pinned.

Step 5: Sew Webbing Squares & Pocket Strips to Calendar Fabric

Next, the webbing squares were sewn 5 across onto each pocket strip, and then each strip was sewn onto the main fabric piece.

Vintage Upholstery Webbing Advent Calendar - Sewing Pockets Together

Note, before sewing strips into place, ensure the ends from sewing the webbing are tied off at the back (top right photo). You can see (bottom right photo) how the strip was sewn onto the main piece of fabric, and how the pockets were created – the bottom edge you left pinned earlier is the edge that is now sewn into place, and the pockets are created by stitching between each webbing square. Be sure to back-stitch the top and bottom of each pocket seam!

Step 6: Pull threads to back and tie off

Again, be sure to tie off all the threads from sewing pockets strips onto calendar fabric.

Vintage Upholstery Webbing Advent Calendar - Pocket Seams

An aside, this fabric is not stained or dirty! The dark smudgy marks you see are shadows cast from my chandelier at night… just in case you were wondering!! 😉

Step 7: Attach Seam Binding Loops for Doweling

The last thing, attach top loops to calendar to hold a piece of doweling; this helps keep the fabric taut. I used seam binding to make my loops.

Vintage Upholstery Webbing Advent Calendar

Step 8: Optional, attach a vintage hanger!

Here’s one of my favorite parts of this project. I used a vintage Canadian Railway hanger to finish it off!

Vintage Upholstery Webbing Advent Calendar

I wrote about thrifting this hanger here, and what’s so much fun is Heather, the little guy Isaac’s ‘mom’ was with me when I found this treasure! This advent calendar was made especially for Isaac who was born in September!

Isaac

Making this advent calendar was a lot of fun, and you know what I believe…

Vintage Upholstery Webbing Advent Calendar

In the end it’s all about the story that goes with the piece!

I love finding new ways to repurpose vintage things! How about you?

I have linked this gift up over at Satori Design for Living.  You might want to pop over to see all the other great handmade gifts, too!

Thanks for stopping by!!

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Photographs by Sheila Zeller – please link and credit if you choose to use! 🙂

‘Twas Almost Christmas When All Through the House…

Christmas is only days away – can you believe? I’ve finished my course, passed my exam, and done as much decorating as I’m going to do!

Want to take a little peek?

Last year I tried my hand at cedar boughs on the banister, and this year I decided to swag it up instead.

The bobbles are thrifted vintage Shiny Brites! I was thrilled to find 5 of these all in one place 🙂

And a nice collection of beautifully patinaed and worn ones, too!

 

 

We have lots of glass and twinkling candle light…

Under the glass cloche are vintage jingle bells…

Glass Cloche & Vintage Jingle Bells

And yes, that’s Angel Hair that you see!

In the background is a handmade straw ornament by Ursula at Sea to Canvas, and we have smaller ones on our ginormous Blue Fir tree!

Our tree skirt is a swath of burlap wrapped around the tree, with warm white mini lights sprinkled underneath… another idea I found on Pinterest!

If you’ve been following along, you might remember this brass urn I thrifted for my Paperwhites.

Well, they’ve been replaced with a little Alberta Spruce tree. You see, the Paperwhites grew waaaay to tall and leggy.

Here’s what I’ve done with them now!

You’ll even find a small splash of greenery in a few unsuspecting spots…

So this is a little tour of our home this year. I haven’t taken photos of everything, because you might already have seen some of it last year. To see last year’s decor, click here. We use the same advent calendar, always have an advent wreath, and our stockings and crèche scene are set out.

I am feeling mostly ready, but still have some things left undone. How about you? Are you finished with your list of things to do?

Thank you for stopping by!

Photographs by Sheila Zeller 

Paperwhite Progress

Some of you might be wondering where I’ve disappeared to lately. Just know, I am trying to catch blog posts and leave the odd comment, but these last few weeks have been consumed with something I’ve been working on for a while. And I’m down to the crunch.

This is currently my can’t live without tool!

Nothing too festive about this, right?

So, I thought I’d update you on the progress of my Paperwhites instead!

You might remember back in early November when I planted the bulbs.

If you missed that post, you can catch it here.

Well, one month later this is where they’re at!

We’ve even had a few bloom!

They are getting a little leggy, and I was warned they would, so I’ve tied them together with some jute. But for a first go at growing them, I’m pretty impressed they took!

Do you plant Paperwhites? What are your tricks for keeping them upright and looking nice for the Holidays?

P.S. – here’s what my desk looks like right now!

Can I just say, it doesn’t usually look like this!

Thank you so much for stopping by! I really appreciate that you did 🙂

Photographs by Sheila Zeller

DIY Your Own Cedar Swags

With the weekend behind us, I’m happy to report that we’ve actually got our decorating well underway. The tree is up, the decorations are scattered placed around, and we’re down to the tweaking touches. We also got our cedar swags hung up outside. If you were reading my blog this time last year, then you already know that hubs is the swag maker in the family!

So this tutorial is per hubs!

Step 1:

Lay out at least 3 or more larger boughs, depending on how long and full you want your swag to be.

Notice the thicker branches? These are great for the back layer of the swag, and then you can build out from there.

Make sure all the boughs are flipped with the same side up.

Here we’re seeing the underside of the boughs.

Step 2:

Flip right-side up, layer smaller boughs on top, and then secure them together by wrapping the branches tightly with twine.

Tie about 3 inches down from the end of the branches.

Step 3:

If you’re adding a bow, now is the time to secure it to the swag.

If not, you’ll want to do extra wraps with the twine to give the swag a finishing touch. Cut off excess twine leaving only about an inch or so.

Step 4:

Cut the extra length off the ends of the branches, about 1 to 2 inches from the twine.

Step 5:

Tie another length of twine, about 12 inches, to the branches. This will be used to hang the swag with.

Here’s a look from the back…

Step 6:

Hang your swag!

This is the swag on our front door…

And one of three on our garage.

By the time I got my camera, the wind had already rearranged the bow and the boughs! I decided to leave it for you to see, you know, just to keep it real!

You might remember, we did swags last year, too. To see last year’s curbside view of the swags on the house, click here!

I still have to put together an arrangement for our front porch, but for now our house has joined the others on the block in showcasing a little festive flair!

How are you doing? I bet you’re all finished with your decorating, aren’t you?

Thanks for stopping by!

Photographs by Sheila Zeller

Save the Day with Baked Parmesan Asparagus

How are your days going?

Mine are seriously flying by. And how did December 1st come and go already? Anyway, to keep this post short and savory, here’s a simple recipe for you, inspired by… you got it, Pinterest!

Baked Parmesan Asparagus

Line baking sheet with parchment paper

Toss fresh asparagus in olive oil

Spread out evenly on baking sheet

Season with infused sea salt and fresh ground pepper

Top with fresh grated Parmesan cheese

Pop into preheated oven (400 F)

Bake 9 to 12 minutes depending on thickness of asparagus

Remove from oven and enjoy!

Doesn’t get any easier than that!

Do you have a favorite quick and easy recipe that saves the day for you?

Thanks for stopping by!

Photographs by Sheila Zeller

Festive Finger Food Delights

On the weekend we had some of our good friends in who also used to live on the Charlottes. It was so great to see them, and so much fun to prep a few finger foods and appies for everyone to enjoy.

We chose foods that were a little different from the every day, and that were festively colourful too.

So I thought I’d give you a little taste and tour 😉 Want to see what we did?

Eggplant for caponata, diced and ready to be sauteed…

Caponata is a Sicilian dish made from chopped fried eggplant, olives, pine nuts, golden raisins, and various other ingredients. It is a type of salad that was historically served as a main course, but is now typically a side dish or appetizer.

With the eggplant sauteing, the bell peppers are prepped for roasting.

Do you see the red peppers in the background?

They will be be char-broiled, heavy on the char part!

See what I mean? Do you ever roast red peppers? The BBQ is a great way to do this, but ours is tucked away for the winter.

Once the peppers are burnt black charred like this, they have to be peeled.

Did I have you going for a minute? Bet you were wondering who on earth eats this, weren’t you?

After the blackened skin is removed, this is what you end up with.

Much better, right?

Toss the peppers in olive oil with fresh basil, chopped garlic, ground pepper, a little salt, and a splash of white wine vinegar.

And it’s like Christmas in a bowl!

Serve as a side dish, or as a topping on crostini.

Crostini, (meaning “little toasts” in Italian), is made using Italian or French baguettes, and is an appetizer of bite-size slices of grilled or toasted bread brushed in olive oil and herbs. It is served with assorted toppings, often cheese and meat, or vegetable toppings like these peppers. Crostini is a great appie with wine!

This is the finished caponata.

Can you see the pine nuts and olives? Do you recognize any of the other ingredients? It tastes a lot like antipasto spread.

And in the blender, a chickpea spread, very similar to humus was being made, also to be paired with the crostini.

And to complete this little assortment, we included marinated mushrooms. They are best when marinated for 24 hours.

Hubby did all the chopping, slicing, and dicing… actually, he made all of these dishes so far 🙂

Notice that the mushrooms are sliced on the thicker side? That’s because you don’t want them to get too whimpy once they’ve been marinated!

This dish is a mix of crimini and oyster mushrooms, tossed with olive oil, white wine vinegar and fresh oregano.

And here’s a little peek at all these things pulled together on the table.

The chickpea spread is in the red dish, and the others are on the white serving tray along with garlic stuffed olives.

I actually did make a few things too!

Like these mini bacon, onion and shrimp quiche…

Oriental chicken wings…

And served bite-size pieces of my brother’s smoked salmon, along with my all-time favorite cheddar cheese ball.

Have you ever had cheese cookies? Seriously, cheese cookies.

I like to include them with an appie buffet like this because they aren’t sweet, and actually have a hint of heat in the spicy way!

That’s paprika you see dusted on the top, but they do have cayenne in them, thus the spicy heat!

A new appie I tried were these cucumber feta rolls.

And they were inspired by my favorite stop for inspiration, Pinterest! The recipe is from Good Life Eats.

We had other savory goodies too…

Like the meat and cheese platter, bocconcini balls, and hiding in the back is a spinach dip…

But of course you always have to have a little something sweet, and in our home, it wouldn’t be Christmas without shortbread cookies!

I used to top them with glazed cherries for the festive colour, but we’re not really keen on them, so I’ve switched to pecans instead. Mmmmm, love the taste of roasted pecans 🙂

And we also picked up some decadent delights from the new bakery in Duncan, Dolce. This is a link to their location if you’re interested in checking them out!

A quarter of the pecan tart is definitely plenty in one sitting. They’re rich and oh, so sinfully delicious!

So that’s a little taste and colourful tour of our appie prep for a day spent with long-time friends.

It feels like Christmas is here.

Do you have any favorites for gatherings like these?

It’s about coming home… If you want a remarkable space that tells your story, contact me to see how we can help!

Did you enjoy this post? By subscribing to my RSS Feed you’ll receive each new post without missing a beat! And you can find more posts here… If a thought comes to mind, comments are always appreciated and I read them all. I’d love to hear from you…

THANKS FOR READING!

 

Seeing Beyond the Fog… of Parcels!

We still don’t have snow, but are getting another layer of white these days.

Like this fog lying low over Quamichan Lake.

And floating across the ball field.

The cloud of white in the background is steam from the Crofton Mill… I had a hunch you might ask!

And here’s a glimpse of what another type of fog looks like…

The back of this van is full of parcels being delivered to road-side mailboxes by Canada Post employees.

Do you think they’re able to see beyond the fog of Christmas parcels yet?

I bet this week is going to be a busy one!

Did you enjoy this post? By subscribing to my RSS Feed you’ll receive each new post without missing a beat! And you can find more posts here… If a thought comes to mind, comments are always appreciated and I read them all. I’d love to hear from you…

THANKS FOR READING!

 

It Feels Like Christmas!

It’s Friday, and the decorating is ‘finished’… but is it ever really finished? After I took all my photos, I thought of other little tweaks I could do, but here’s some perspective on tweaking. When I showed Kaleigh the finishing touches, what she noticed were the ornaments hanging in the window… that went up about 2 weeks ago!

So if you’re thinking tweaking will make all the difference, just remember it might only make a difference to you! Others could just now be soaking in all your hard work from days gone by.

And with that I wanted to wrap up this week and my prep-for-Christmas focus by sharing a few corners and moments with you from inside our home.

Welcome!

Father Christmas will greet you as you step inside.

Along with fresh cedar boughs

As you step around the corner you will find our Advent wreath. This was something brought forward by my hubby into our Christmases. He grew up with Advent wreaths, and he also grew up with the gold angel chimes you see in the middle.

He tells me that on Christmas Eve he and his brothers would have to stay downstairs while his parents decorated the Christmas tree. When the tree was finished his mom would ring a little bell signalling for them to come upstairs. When they entered the room the angel chimes would also be softly dinging in the background.

Here’s a better look at the angel chimes.

The heat from the candles makes the little fan spin, and the hook you see on the left taps the bells as it spins past them. The wreath is made from fresh fir, and I spray it with water every day to keep it from drying out too fast.

This is local holly that I picked up from Princess Holly at the foot of our hill.

And the floating candle idea was inspired by Pinterest!

This cinnamon scented pine cone adds to the feeling of Christmas with the aroma it leaves in the air.

Like the pine cone, the objects inside the apothecary jar are scented too, but not in a good way! I don’t like the smell of them, but I do like them! So I thought an apothecary jar was a good choice, and now I am able to use them for a splash of colour in the powder room.

 

The candles inside the clear flutes are  mini oil lamps made of blown glass. They are made by GBS Glassblowing company in Shawnigan Lake.

If you haven’t been to GBS studio, it’s worth the trip. And if you time it right you might even see owner, Grahame Fowle in glassblowing mode. Grahame’s creations are beautiful, and seeing him in action is awe inspiring.

These are our handmade Christmas stockings… the two on the right.  I made the one in the middle for Kaleigh’s first Christmas, and my Mom made a new one for me at the same time. Let’s just say my old one is now a vintage piece in my collection of things 😉

The names are cross-stitched separately and then machine sewn onto the stocking. All the beading and felt pieces are stitched by hand. We draft our own patterns inspired by colouring books and Christmas cards. And the stocking on the left, well it’s kind of like our tree topper – it’s an interim, but will be replaced by a handmade one like the other two. I’m still in the drafting mode!

And this little stocking Kaleigh made for me about 8 years ago with some ‘help’ from her Nana… It’s a pretty special ornament and always finds a special spot on the tree.

And this is an ornament she beaded with very little help quite a few years ago.

This fun ornament is a red hot chili pepper that Tristan, my hubby’s son, gave to him a few years ago. I tried to get a close-up so you can see the detail in his face. Isn’t he great? We would put him on the tree, but he’s ceramic and uber heavy, so wants to slide off the branches!

My hubby brought the gold table covering for me from Germany before we were married… and of course you know all about the crow family I wrote about yesterday! They make me smile 🙂

He also brought back this hand carved crèche scene from Cologne. If you look closely you’ll see Mary, Joseph and baby Jesus in the middle. And then all around them are the 3 Wise Men, a Shephard, a camel guide, and of course the livestock. There’s a camel too, but you can’t see him because he’s at the back in the photo.

So just like the angel chimes, when the candles are lit the heat from them turns the fan, and this makes the little platform holding the livestock, etc. turn around Mary, Joseph and Jesus in the middle.

When Kaleigh was younger we went to see the Nutcracker ballet, and this is her keepsake ornament.

The ‘Polar Express’ has always been a family favorite, and this is Kaleigh’s Polar Express bell!

When my hubby and I were dating we each bought pieces to the Thomas Kinkade Christmas village. And then joined our pieces and put them out for our 1st married Christmas together!

Here’s a day shot…

And a night one too.

Thank you for stopping by!

I hope you enjoyed your visit.

 

Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays from our home to yours!

THANKS FOR READING!

 

It’s a Giveaway with Sea to Canvas!

The Christmas season is upon us, and today I bring you a Christmas GIVEAWAY!

Multi-talented artist, Ursula Rettich of Sea to Canvas

 Is offering my amazing followers (that’s you!) the chance to win from her collection:

2 sets of traditional handmade straw ornaments of your choice

OR

2 handmade Christmas cards of your choice

OR

 One of each!

Ursula is a multi-talented artist with a background in fabric arts and abstract painting. But the ancient tradition of making straw ornaments is an art form near and dear to her heart. Ursula was born in Germany and brought this craft with her when she came to Canada over 40 years ago. Click here and scroll for a behind the scenes look at how these ornaments are made. It’s amazing all that goes into creating such delicate keepsakes!

Want to win these authentic handmade keepsakes?

Here is how to enter.

Visit Ursula’s Etsy Shop, and leave a comment below telling me which straw ornaments or Christmas cards you like.

For extra entries do any or all of the below, and leave a separate comment for each:
  1. Become a new follower of Sheila Zeller Interiors
  2. “Like” Sheila Zeller Interiors on Facebook
  3. Follow Sea to Canvas blog… be the first to see new paintings by Ursula!
  4. Follow @SeaToCanvas and @SZInteriors on Twitter
  5. Tweet about this giveaway with @SZInteriors and @SeaToCanvas in the tweet!
This is open to everyone!
You have until midnight PST this Thursday, December 8, 2011 to enter!
The winner will be drawn via Random.org and announced on Friday, December 9, 2011.

Shipping is free for Canada and the US. Outside of Canada and the US, shipping to be negotiated.

 

Good luck 🙂