I had some elves working at Meg Staley Handmade!!! Kathryn And Duncan Penfold plastered the studio with hand-printed cloth napkins – gifts for unsuspecting family members. I couldn’t resist a shot of all this unapologetic RED!!!
A terrific way to cheer up an otherwise grey winterscape. No snow for Christmas this year. Though Mother Nature has skedaddled to make up for that in the first 2 weeks of 2016. Happy new year!!
My dear friend, Tracy Strong, lost her dad last year and after reclaiming some of his favorite sweaters and shirts, asked me to refashion the garments into scarves and throwpillows for her family’s Christmas reunion in Sun Valley. Here is Tracy, flanked by her sisters, daughter and nieces in the Jack Strong memorial infinity scarves. Cozy, colorful, and grinning from ear to ear, happy to be together.
Thank you, Tracy, for allowing me to help you retain the memory of your father and celebrate your family’s ties.
It was such a busy summer and my posting ground to a halt. So hindsight highlights include this bright banner of hand-screened teeshirt parts!
Inside my studio-workshop in beautiful Leelanau County, Michigan.
Spring is springing forth!
Outside the landscape presents quite a different palette.
But no less inspiring!
Kay Martin and husband at her son’s 2005 wedding wearing Staley / Gretzinger.
I thought you might be interested in the saga of this top.
In 2005, when my son was about to be married in Tuolumne Meadows, I found a wonderful dress in a small local boutique (Ellyn’s – since closed). I love this dress, and when my daughter decided to get married this September, I asked her if I could wear it to her outdoor wedding on the banks of the Skokomish River on the Olympic Peninsula where she and her fiancé live. “No,” she said, “I want you to wear something different.” I looked in every store I knew in Cleveland. I kept telling salespeople that I wanted something that felt like this dress. They all proceeded to show me what they had. Nobody “got” it.
Then I decided to look at the tag in my outfit. And, I found your blog. And I found Kaye-Louise in Florida. They were kind enough to send photos of the tops they had. And I chose the one I am sending to you. I love this top. It is playful, it is fun. I’ll feel wonderful wearing it.
But, last Sunday, I went to a local arts fair (Cain Park Arts Fair in Cleveland Heights) to look for jewelry. As I put the top in a canvas bag, I had a brief moment when I thought I should bag it separately from the book and newspaper I was carrying, but ignored that. When we were caught in a brief and welcome downpour, it didn’t dawn on me to pull the top out of the bag and put it in something else. I can only guess that the newsprint bled onto the top.
What perseverance! I was so impressed that Kay Martin tracked down Meg Staley Handmade at one of my best stores, Kaye Louise, in Boca Raton, Florida. Kaye Louise caters to women like Kay, going to any lengths to satisfy their need to look and feel uniquely comfortable and beautiful. The piece Kay chose from Kaye Louise was easily repaired and this fall she sent me another picture from her daughter’s wedding this September. Doesn’t she look relaxed and happy?
This summer my nephew, Max Linsky, married his long time sweetheart, Meredith Jacks, in a celebration near my sister, Lynn Staley and bro-in-law, Marty Linsky’s gorgeous home near Rome. The house overlooks a beautiful hilltown, Collevecchio, with olive orchards and pastureland spreading in all directions and that was the backdrop for my big reveal.
Earlier in the spring I asked both families to send me mementos of their kid’s lives that I could sew together into a surprise quilt. Moms Sherry and Lynn obliged by sending an array of tee shirts, dresses, athletic shorts and duffles as well as photos chronicling Max and Meredith’s shining moments which I transferred onto fine white cotton for applique. For more versatility, I made the quilt reversable, with the back side featuring a patchwork of beautiful white ground vintage prints. The result? Lots of hugs AND a forever keepsake!
The bride admires her wedding gift…
The bride and groom wrapped in love.
Our family displays the quilt off Lynn and Marty’s 2nd floor terrace. From left to right:
Sherry, Max, Meredith, Nelle, Lynn, me, Penelope, Violet, Henry, Kate, Lucky, Marty, Jerry.
Sunset over Collevecchio: an end to a happy day
Hiroto Grashow lost his mom, Yatsuko, to brain cancer when he was just a newborn.
Prior to his arrival, during her prolonged illness, I was asked to make his older brother, Shogo and sister, Sakura, their own personal quilts. I heard back from their dad, Alexander, that the quilts became fortresses, tents, territorial boundaries and otherwise safe havens for both kids as the family struggled emotionally with the reality of losing their mother, wife and daughter. This spring, 2 year old Hiro asked for his very own special quilt.
The Grashow sibs today: Sakura, Hiroto and Shogo. I’m so happy and honored to have provided the Grashow family with some talismans of hope and joy during such a tough time and for years to come. Thanks to Lynn Staley and Marty Linsky for that opportunity. And thankyou, Alexander, for being such a wonderful dad.
When it comes to holiday gift-giving, pillows are easy! They’re cozy, huggable, and they don’t have to fit right! Maybe that’s why December has gone down as a record-breaking pillow-making month at Meg Staley Handmade! Below are knitted pillows I designed combining my handprints with crazy handknit panels by Suzanne Armstrong, of Arty Party fame! I think her special customers are going to be soooo delighted to get these as presents!
Another favorite store owner, Gina Trento, from The Better Half, ordered name pillows for her niece and nephew, Sabrina and Nicholas. When they were done I grinned. Wide.
Last, but not least, orders for Meg Staley Handmade patchwork pillow shams ALWAYS keep me busy at this time of year. This time I made a few extra and Jerry put a couple in his eBay site. Click on this link SG ATTIC and you can see the standard-size pillow shams up close and personal, as well as a few other Meg Staley Handmade clothing items left from my fall season! Even though it’s a little too late to shop for your loved ones, WHAT ABOUT YOU??? I’m one of those sinners who slips a few (several) presents for myself into the holiday equation. I’m sure you’re all much too virtuous to do the same. But, in case you’re not…….