Monday, February 25, 2013

Fabric Love: Around the World

It's Monday and I have to make a confession.  I walked into my crafting room today to create since I finished my 'chores' yesterday and I realized I just l-o-v-e fabric!  Since we live in Europe, I have developed a kind of habit of searching out fabric when we travel to new cities.  Ok, ok.  So I am not being honest...or rather, I am leaving something out.  I search out fabric...and antiques...and flea markets!  I love them all and get so excited at the thought of what I might find in fantastic places like France, Belgium, The Netherlands and Italy.  After all, some of the best designers and haute couture come from Europe.  That being said, though I may not have the budget of those high end fashionistas, a girl can still get ideas and find more economical ways to create her own fashion style. 

Over the last three years of living in Germany, I have learned a few key things about fabric and textiles.  Shop around being number one.  Prices vary from country to country, and so do styles.  I adopted the mindset early on that I didn't want to spend money on frivolous things when we traveled so instead I would search out something that I could use to create a memory of our trip.  I have found that with fabric, I can make whatever I want.  The beauty is, it travels well and it can be set aside for a rainy day.  The best thing to me is that when our European vacation is over, when I look at the fabric in use in our home, I will remember the times we traveled, the places we went and the stories that go along with it. 

On a trip to Finland in 2011, I discovered Marimekko (, a textile design company that exudes nothing but fun and color.  Their fabrics are top quality, colors are bold and lively and what I would love to have all over my house.  The only drawback I could see was price...they are high end so expect to pay a pretty price.  At $59 for one yard of fabric, I think I might have to hold out on this designer for now.  I do check the sale section of their website often though, just to see what might pop up because their designs are so awesome and quality is great.  Their products are even sold in Crate and Barrel so I can keep an eye open for them. 
In February we hoped a flight with our backpacks and headed to Northern Italy, and visited Venice, Pordenone and Aviano.  When our friends there asked if there was anywhere we wanted to go, they giggled when I said I would love to find a fabric store.  Sure enough, they found one ( and we ventured out to find it!  When we arrived, they simply laughed at me moving through the store finding several items that I packed in my basket.  Funny enough, this time I had a project in mind so I focused on everything I need to accomplish it.  It was funny to see two men following me around the store (hubby and our friend) while I was shopping. 

On our Italian trip I learned 'scampoli' in Italian refers to remnants, which was evident by the large amount of usable remnants in this fabulous, 2-level store.  Giesse Scampoli is one of the largest fabric stores in Northern Italy and what makes them unique is they get remnants from fashion houses.  This means they have all the latest trends to include velvet, silk, and a whole lot more all sold by weight.  For about $8 I found what I needed to redo all the pillows in our bedroom since I am changing out our colors.  I also found some beautiful tapestry I am using for table runners.  I have three of these for sale so stay tuned to our Facebook page to get one!  Here is a sample of one of my favorite patterns...this is also the pattern I have for sale.
 Since living here in Europe, my best advice to you for finding fabrics if you live in Germany is to head to The Netherlands!  Sadly, Germany has a lot to offer as far as sewing and crafting goes, but all of the fabrics I have seen here are grossly expensive.  I thought maybe it was just the first store I went to in Trier, but then I searched around and kept coming up disappointed.  Many fabrics {especially cottons} are actually ordered from the U.S., so because they are imported, they are priced very high.  In contrast, I found a weekly fabric market in Maastricht, Netherlands and they offer way more variety and seasonal options for much less.  I can honestly say I have seen fabrics there for 12 euro/meter, and turned around and saw the same, exact thing here in Germany for 28 euro/meter!!!  That is a savings I will drive an hour and 15 minutes for.

I would love to hear from readers about your experiences with fabric shopping and what your tastes are!  Wherever you are in the world, what is favorite go-to store for all your sewing needs?  Give them some love here and call 'em out by name!  Have a wonderful week and thanks for stopping by.  Xo~Mollykid 


Sunday, February 24, 2013

Join Mollykid Studios on Pinterest

Enjoying a relaxing Sunday morning looking around on Pinterest for a little bit before I have to get started with my Sunday cleaning routine. Did I mention Mollykid is on Pinterest?! I don't think I have since I am somewhat of a stop by and follow us @

Though I would love to wake up and do nothing but sew, paint, and create... I have this sick obsession to make sure my house is tidy and clean before I get fun time. So I think today I am going to put on my headphones, turn on some jams and put my cleaning routine in high gear so I am done quickly! Wish me luck, I think the bathrooms are first after I get the washer going. I dislike bathrooms immensely, and would love nothing more than a self cleaning one that is somewhat like a dishwasher. You simply would remove anything you don't want to get wet, (cabinets would be watertight), close the door, insert a cleaning tab, power and walk away! Voila! When you return you have a sanitized masterpiece. 

Enough dreaming, Molly! Snap out of it and get to it; valuable creative time is being wasted. What chores keep you from pursuing your hobbies today? Xo~Mollykid

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Amazing Amsterdam

Hello Friends,
I have been away from my computer more than usual for the past few days, but for good reason!  I was spending some much anticipated time with my family in Amseterdam, The Netherlands.  Let me begin by saying...if I were to live long-term in Europe, The Netherlands would be my country of choice.  I love the clean and simple, yet friendly and convienent life the people there seem to live.  I picked up some information and read that UNICEF studies show children in The Netherlands to be the happiest in the world!  There is something to be said about that.  I love that everyone has bikes and bikes are welcome fact, there are parking "garages" dedicated specifically to bikes.  And seriously, I mean thousands of them!  We even saw a gentleman checking "parking" passes and giving tickets to those out of regulation.

The sun was shining for a couple days and it made the reflection in the canal waters so beautiful.  Like most trips we have taken, my camera never left my neck to be stowed away.  I had it at the ready for every time I saw an awesome sign, an unforgetable view or something unique that we just don't see every day.  We saw evidence of history everywhere, to include our visits to the Anne Frank House and the Vincent Van Gogh exhibit at the Hermitage Amsterdam.  I could hardly walk away from the many beautiful paintings from one of my all time favorite artists.  I only wish I could have taken pictures in these fantastic places, unfortunately photos were prohibited.  Luckily outdoors there are no restrictions on pictures!  These canals are simply beautiful, don't you think?

I felt one of the best parts of our trip this weekend was simply walking along the canals in the evening when it got dark.  Upon each turn of a corner, bridges and canals were gently lit and it made me want to keep snapping photos.  I have always had a small love affair with black and white photography and can't wait to blow some of these prints up for my new home decor.

I figured no article about Holland would be complete without a mention of the beautiful flowers that will begin blooming all over soon!  For now, they are growing in greenhouses mostly, but in the Amsterdam Bloemenmarkt flowers are all around.  Every kind of bulb you could ever want is here, in every color under the sun.  Did you know there are actually black tulips?  And ones that appear to have feathery hairs on them?  Here is where you will find whatever you need for your own little Holland in your back yard.  I hope if you ever have a chance to visit this wonderful city that you don't pass up the opportunity!  You won't regret it.  Oh, and if you need a hotel recommendation, simply contact me!  We stayed near the train station, never had to drive on those narrow roads, find parking or even risk getting towed.  
Until tomorrow...what will you do today to feed your creativity?  xo~Mollykid


Thursday, February 14, 2013

Love is in the Air

It's Valentine's Day and love is all around!  I spent some time preparing for the "men" in my life wonderful husband and our wonderful boys.  I love making gifts that are personal on days like this, not only is it fun, but it gives my loves something from my heart.  What do you think about hand made gifts?  Here are a couple of the ones I made this year...

"You light up my life" hanging bulb

"My Special Secret Note Pillow" with pocket on the back for special notes from Mom and Dad

Personalized kid's bookmarks with ribbon tassles and special "I love you" messages

What is Valentine's Day without some special treats?  This year our boys decided they wanted to make their own Valentine's for their friends and classmates and I was all for it!  I was actually excited to bring out my scrapbooking tools, papers and stamps to make this a fun time.  I must say, I have been more focused on sewing lately so my scrapbooking supplies have gotten a little lonely in that big closet.  After a few hours of work, a break for a Thai food dinner, and then some clean-up, the kids were ready for their Valentine treat deliveries today. 

I must admit, I wasn't too keen on baking enough treats for three different classrooms so when I found a Wilton chocolate covered cookie mold at the craft store, I was so relieved!  I stocked up on Oreo's, red and white chocolate meltables {also from Wilton} and easily made almost 60 red and white chocolate covered Oreo's while the kids worked on their cards.  If you are a mom, might I recommend this idea as it was easy and I was even able to help the kids in between batches {see picture above}.  The boys were happy they had something special to bring for friends, too!

What kind of special plans do you have for Valentine's this year?  I hope you have a wonderful day; I will be wishing you lot's of love.  xo~Mollykid   


Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Cuddle Up, Pup!

Who doesn't love a cuddly place to lay and take a rest from a long, hard day?  Well these little cuties just love their new snuggle spaces from Mollykid Studios!  A good friend came to me a few weeks ago with a project idea, and here is the result!  A soft and cozy bed cave meant for hiding and sleeping in.  It can also be folded out to a flat bed and makes a cozy crate companion.  

I love projects like this where the customer is you see that little dogs smile?!  I don't know about you, but I love that soft minky fabric, too.  Perhaps its time for a new throw blanket. Hmmmmm.  {Note to self: watch for minky fabric sale!!}

What lengths do you go to in order to cater to your precious pups and pets?  Do your furry friends like to hideout under the covers and keep you awake at night?  You might just need one of these! xo~Mollykid  


Thursday, February 7, 2013

Brightening Your Day

Even though we are covered in snow here in Germany, tulips are already blooming {in the Netherlands} and available at our local markets!  I had to pick some up yesterday to brighten my scene and put a little smile on my face.  In addition to the flowers, I pulled out my favorite vase from a favorite city.  You can't see it too clearly but it's a heavy crystal beauty and the best part?  It was only 1 euro (about $1.40) in a fabulous tiny antique store on our first trip to Paris!  I was thrilled to find this and made a vow then that instead of buying some corny souvenir when we visit these fabulous cities, I would instead find a vintage treasure or some awesome fabric I can make something special with.   

This beautiful color reminds me we are nearing Spring, which is only a short hop from Summer.  I have been longing to see the sun so I am happy to see these small, yet positive signs it is near.

What kind of things do you do inside your space to brighten your day when it's gloomy outside? xo~Mollykid       

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Ooh La La Bulletin Board

While I was rearranging my craft room a few weeks ago to accomodate my new antique hutch, I stumbled upon a nice 16x20 wooden frame I found at a flea market in Schweich, Germany several months ago.  It was a steal for only 2 euro, so I brought it home, along with dozens of other things, and gave it a mini-makeover.  A wipedown to clean her up and a quick once over with some fine sandpaper made her start to smile again.  I finished up with a coat of black satin spray paint and voila...She was ready for some artwork!

Needless to say, months went by while she waited patiently for me to find her an art mate, but low and behold, last week I was able to do even better.  She isn't simply a frame now, she is a working girl.  She can hold pictures, fabric samples and magazine pics, business cards and even sketches of my latest ideas.  I have always wanted a "pin board" that doesn't use pins or tacks, so I gathered a few simple items and here is the result...
If you look at this and think it's a complicated project, think again!  You can do it and have it match any room in your house; mine is already hanging in my sewing room.  As you may know, I love Paris and watercolors so the fabric was a perfect match to bring color to my happy place.  I was thinking though...this would be a cute idea for a kitchen to hold notes, schedules, pictures and even recipes and menu's for the week.  I am already adding another frame to my mental list of things to find at my next flea market stop!!

With this project I did take pictures of each stage so I will get a tutorial together soon to share with you.  I hope this week is treating you well wherever you are in the world.  Good night from snowy Germany. xo~Mollykid  


Monday, February 4, 2013

First Project of February!

Although I can hardly believe it is already February, I am not in denial that Valentine's Day is right around the corner!  That being said, I have no clue what to do for my love yet, but I did get this wild hair last night to put together this "Be Mine" Banner for our window.  Since this is my first project post, I will just plug in the final picture for you. 

When I figure out how to post several pictures along with instructions, I will attempt to post a tutorial!  Bear with me, I am still a newbie at this blog, but I will get it together soon.  I hope you will continue to follow us at Facebook and at our new location here on Blogspot (Google Blogger).  

What Valentine's Day projects are you thinking/dreaming about??  xo~Mollykid     

Testing, testing, 1-2-3 testing!!

Hello Friends!
I woke up this morning with a little pep in my step and decided to take the leap I have been dreaming about.  So here I am, writing a short little test message here on my very own blog!  I hope this works...I can't wait to get the page all ready for you!  Xo~Mollykid