Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter

Just wanted to wish my fellow readers and bloggers a wonderful Easter. May you spend your day with friends and family and have a great day.

HAPPY EASTER!

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Tracy - Simple Living
My love of vintage goods, antiques
and handmade primitives!
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Wednesday, April 20, 2011

The First Soap

This certainly cannot be documented; but it is quite possible soap could have been discovered even in prehistoric times. Early people cooking their meats over fires might have noticed after a rainstorm there was a strange foam around the remains of the fire and its ashes. They might have even noticed when water was put in a pot that had been used for cooking meats and then got ashes in it, which often happens with outdoors cooking, also had this strange foamy substance. This women, most likely who was doing the washing, might have also observed the pot became cleaner or at least her hands became cleaner then usual.

It is recorded that the Babylonians were making soap around 2800 B.C. and that it was known to the Phoenicians around 600 B.C. These early references to soap and soap making were for the use of soap in the cleaning of textile fibers such as wool and cotton in preparation for weaving into cloth.

Read more about the first soap here...

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Tracy - Simple Living
My love of vintage goods, antiques
and handmade primitives!
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Saturday, April 16, 2011

Kitties on the way....

UPDATE: KITTIES ARE HERE!

I love kitties and even though I dont have a "real" kitty of my own I do love making them. I made this pattern YEARS ago and made up a bunch for friends and family and then well, I got out of making things for a while. As I was cleaning up my computer I found my old pattern and thought, why not go ahead and make some kitties up again? So today, I will be sewing up 2 of them for you all to see and hopefully you might want one for yourself or to give as a gift.

Come back a little later today and take a peek, you wont be disappointed ~meow~

Let me know what you think of them! Aren't they just adorable?

Price: $14 set of 2 + shipping. Each kitty measures approx. 8-9" from tip of ear to bottom and are approx 2-3" across. They come with little jingle bells with a rusty pin and Mrs. Kitty has a cute little osnaburg blankie with Live Well, Laugh Often, Love Much handstamped on there. Such a cute pair!

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Tracy - Simple Living
My love of vintage goods, antiques
and handmade primitives!
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Friday, April 15, 2011

Have you seen my creations?

I make a bunch of items that are handmade by me to include: wax tarts, candle mats, room sprays, prairie dolls and grungy tapers too! Coming soon are kitties!

If you haven't checked out my creations, please do by clicking here... I make all my stuff by hand so please allow a few days for me to make and ship our your goodies.

I offer my tarts and room sprays in a variety of scents too! If your in West Alexandria, Ohio, you can check out my goodies at Lizzie's Log Cabin!


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Tracy - Simple Living
My love of vintage goods, antiques
and handmade primitives!
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Tuesday, April 12, 2011

What is a Floorcloth....

Floorcloths or "Oylcloths" are first mentioned in Britain in the beginning of the eighteenth century. They were painted by humble housepainters and often offered in the classical designs used for marble floors by the fashionable architects of the day.

Originally hand painted and stencilled, by the middle of the 18th century floorcloths began to be printed with hand held wooden blocks. The trade had become a proper industry with factories springing up in ports such as Dundee and Bristol as well as London, where the looms used for the weaving of sail cloth were also used to weave the great widths necessary to cover a large floor without any seams.

The apogee of floorcloth manufacture was perhaps around the turn of the 18th and 19th centuries, when many great houses ordered floorcloths for their entrance halls. At this time companies such as SMITH and BABER of Knightsbridge did a considerable trade not only in Britain but also abroad, particularly to America. Although there soon sprung up an American Floorcloth industry to rival the British, floorcloths continued to be imported to America such as the rare example still preserved in situ in Natchez, Mississippi, imported in 1849.

The trade continued to flourish throughout the 18th century but the patenting of linoleum by Frederick Walton in 1860 proved to be a blow from which the industry was never to recover.

This once flourishing industry has been all but forgotten, mainly because so few examples have survived. In Britain there are only fragments preserved at Calke Abbey. American floorcloths survive not only in Natchez but in Colonial Williamsburg. Perhaps the oldest cloth surviving in situ is the charming floorcloth in the Swedish Royal Palace of Tullgarn, dating from 1800. This cloth is not factory manufactured but painted as a one-off. Its existance suggests that perhaps other cloths were also painted for European palaces at this period.

Unknown original source. If you wrote this excerpt, please contact me so I can give you credit.

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Tracy - Simple Living
My love of vintage goods, antiques
and handmade primitives!
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My great finds....

Well as you can see from my previous post, I was going to the first craft show of the season for me and while everyone there made wonderful items, it just wasn't the primitive/old time living style I was looking for BUT I did pick up an awesome Bunny Gourd.

On my way home, I stopped at the antique store and picked up a large crock and also some vintage linens, now what am I going to do with them is the question. Not sure if I want to use the linens for making stuff with, since they are 3 1/2 yards (2) and the other one is 4 yards, so that's pretty much. I could make quite a few things with these.

Now the crock of course will be going in my kitchen and I will be putting my utensils in them so no guessing on what I will do with it, however, it is my first crock so I might change my mind later on down the road but for now, utensils it is!

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Tracy - Simple Living
My love of vintage goods, antiques
and handmade primitives!
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Friday, April 8, 2011

Hitting the Craft Show ....

First one for me for this year and I am a bit excited, I am hoping it's not all crocheted items or even Easter items, now don't get me wrong, I love bunnies and grungy handmade quilt eggs but I'm hoping to find some things I can keep out all year long, not only for a particular Holiday.

When I return tomorrow with my goodies, I will be sure to post some pictures to share.

Is anyone else hitting any Craft Shows this weekend? I was hoping to go to the Simple Goods show one April 23rd but with an 8 hour drive, right now it just isn't in my craft show planning.

On that note, those of you who are going to the Simple Goods show, please be sure to stop by Lizzie's Cabin Primitives and Love the Prim Look. They will be having some awesome handmade goods that you will fall in love with, tell them I sent you!

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Tracy - Simple Living
My love of vintage goods, antiques
and handmade primitives!
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Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Butter-making - home churns and utensils

Home butter-making took time and energy, but only needed simple equipment. Low-tech methods were still well-known in rural parts of developed countries like the USA in the mid-20th century. In the UK it became less common for ordinary families to make their own butter in the course of the 19th century, but the old ways were still used on small farms and in the dairies belonging to grand houses.

After the cow(s) were milked, the milk was left to settle in a cool place, in shallow dishes, or pancheons, so the cream would rise to the top. (Unless the butter was to be made from whole milk: less common than making it from cream.) Brass and earthenware dishes were used in the UK in the 17th and 18th centuries, with earthenware becoming gradually more popular, as brass sometimes tainted the flavor.

After half a day or so, the cream was skimmed off and put ready for the churn. Small home producers would want to collect a few days of milking to have enough cream to be worth churning, and a little fermentation would "ripen" the flavour. But the cream couldn't be left waiting too long in summer-time.

Churning
Moving the cream constantly is the churning that actually produces butter by separating out the yellow fat from the buttermilk. Simply shaking it in a closed jamjar for an hour or so will work, or you can swing unseparated milk in an animal skin hung on sticks, an ancient method still used in some parts of the world.

Read more on Butter Making by visiting Old and Interesting...
(A special thank you to Old and Interesting for this information)

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Tracy - Simple Living
My love of vintage goods, antiques
and handmade primitives!
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Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Vintage Double Lock Post Office Boxes

I think I hit the jackpot yesterday, yes I am super happy about it. Someone posted a listing on our local Cheapcycle group with the hopes of selling these wonderful double lock vintage post office boxes and I was the lucky first one to respond.

I am in love! Thinking about what I am going to do with them but not quite sure yet, for now I can just admire them.

Anyone know what they are worth? I will have to look around for any markings today but here's a pic, please dont drool.

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Tracy - Simple Living
My love of vintage goods, antiques
and handmade primitives!
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