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Thanksgiving Elegance: Antiquities Tasseled Table Runner

Wednesday, 03 November 2010 9:00

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Although I have no proof, I feel certain that somewhere in my past there is an ancestor of regal bearing. Perhaps a Baltic princess or a brooding prince from the moors of Scotland. I have a deep affection for well-appointed luxury. For a formal occasion, I love the look of a table runner with place mats. The rich dark wood of the dining table sets off the fabric, and the individual linens act like beautiful little frames for the china and silver. This very elegant table runner in a sparkling platinum damask with rich mahogany accents is from Michael Miller's Antiquity collection. It's certainly fit for a king or a queen or... for your own royal family this Thanksgiving.

Thanksgiving Elegance: Handsome Half Apron

Monday, 01 November 2010 9:00

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This fabric, from Michel Miller's Antiquity Collection, is so lovely, you don't want or need any distractions. We chose to design a classic half apron with clean, simple lines to showcase the stunning motifs with their sparkling gold metallic accents. Kathy Miller, co-owner of Michael Miller Fabrics and the designer of this fabulous collection, described it as 'Dr. Zhivago meets Anthropologie.' A perfect image... although now I'm tempted to wear it with one of those giant Russian fur hats. Faux fur, of course.

Italiano Kitchen: Bistro Placemats

Thursday, 28 October 2010 9:00

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Without a spare month to spend learning Italian in Rome from a handsome young man over plates of spaghetti and glasses of wine, perhaps these placemats can serve a starting point. We used the signature Mutli Blocks Italino fabric from the new Michael Miller collection, Alfabeto Italiano Collezione. The fabric features elaborately illustrated 4" x 4" alphabet blocks in wonderful vintage colors. Why in just the short time it took to make two placemats, I've already learned that "L" is for lanterna (lantern), lepre (rabbit) and libri (books). My impressive vocabulary will undoubtedly come in handy as soon as I step off the plane in Italy and need to locate 'books on hunting rabbits by lantern light.'

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Italiano Kitchen: Bambina Apron

Tuesday, 26 October 2010 9:00

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Yesterday we featured our Italiano Kitchen Mama Apron. Today, we have a matching version for Bambina. We've switched to the Cream Parole fabric, but kept the same bright red bias binding and the same Cha Cha Stripe for the kick-skirt, ties and tattered flower. The steps for the two aprons are nearly identical, just in a 'mini-me' size for a bambina approximately size 8/10 (the waist and neck ties allow for a lot of adjustment so it would go a little smaller or a little bigger). We've listed the supplies and tools again as well as the smaller cutting instructions. Once you have everything ready to go, simply click to the previous article for a step-by-step tutorial.

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Italiano Kitchen: Mama Apron

Monday, 25 October 2010 9:00

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We love aprons here at Sew4Home. So we knew our Italiano Kitchen would not be complete without them. In fact, it would not be complete without two of them: one for Mama and one for Bambina (it debuts tomorrow). Inspired by those wonderful 1960s dresses Sophia Loren wore in her movies, our apron design combines a lovely wrapped front with a full, peek-a-book skirt. It looks oh-so sophisticated and rather complex to make. But... no tears, no drama, no throwing of plates. In true S4H-fashion, we keep the sophistication, but lose the complexity. Construction is step-by-step easy.

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Italiano Kitchen: Bistro Napkins

Thursday, 21 October 2010 9:00

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My favorite part of Italian cooking is the sauces. Spicy red sauce with lots of chunky vegetables. Rich alfredo sauce with extra garlic and parmesan. They're all deliciously drippy. And, none can be properly eaten without a nice, big napkin. Our Bistro Napkins are generous at 20" x 20" and feature a fun border strip along the bottom of each. Cloth napkins are truly one of the very easiest projects for a beginner, and a great way to 'go green.'

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Haunted Halloween: Bat Mobile

Tuesday, 19 October 2010 9:00

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I admit to a fascination with bats. Perhaps it's because I'm so nearsighted and think it might be nice to have radar when I've knocked my eyeglasses off the nightstand. Or, maybe I like how they swoop in nearly silent loops through the night skies above our hay field. They don't scare me in the least. Anything gobbling up spiders and bugs is okay in my book. Our very cute Halloween Mobile boasts five friendly bats with felt fangs and button eyes. Stuffed with polyester fiber fill, they are soft and chubby and ready to fly above your door to welcome trick-or-treaters.

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Haunted Halloween: Crazy Cape

Monday, 18 October 2010 9:00

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No self-respecting Halloween witch would be caught out under the moon without three important items: a flying broom, a pointy hat, and a kookie cape. Turns out flying brooms are rather hard to come by, but we have you covered on the other fronts. Today: the cape. Ours is stylishly short and made of witchy wedges cut from Fat Quarters, lined with Green Slime satin, and tied 'round the neck with black velvet ribbons. Ghoulish yet glamourous.

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Italiano Kitchen: Bistro Tablecloth

Friday, 15 October 2010 9:00

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Benvenuti! I cannot claim a speck of Italian in my ancestry, but that doesn't mean I don't wax as rhapsodic as Julia Roberts in Eat, Pray, Love when I describe the wonder that is Italian cooking. My husband tells great stories of the big Sunday Italian dinners of his childhood, with Grandpa Luigi at the head at the table and a heaping platter of spaghetti being passed from cousin to cousin to cousin... I lost count at about 10 cousins. The first of our five Italiano Kitchen projects is this simple, colorful tablecloth. It's the perfect setting for your own family gathering.

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Haunted Halloween: Dead Roses Witch Hat

Thursday, 14 October 2010 9:00

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One of my favorite characters in the Warner Bros.® series of cartoons is Witch Hazel , who debuted in the 1954 short, "Bewitched Bunny." Disney® had previously created a Witch Hazel, and she was kind of cool too, but not nearly as sarcastic or quite the fashion victim as the Hazel created by Warner Bros. animator, Chuck Jones. A major part of his Hazel's signature style included a wonderfully crumpled black hat. We think she would approve of our Dead Roses Halloween Hat with its scrunched top, wilting flowers and stowaway spider. "Hauntingly hideous haute couture!"

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