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Filtering by Tag: from the little room

inspired by ada mae

liz lamoreux


where love resides, a new prayer flag set in the shop

When I find myself surrounded by vintage sewing bits and buttons and paper and fabric, my mind turns to the stories of the women who came before me. One of these women, Ada Mae, died just before I was born. Sometimes though, I imagine that great-grandmothers just might live forever and that Ada Mae lives just a bike ride away. We would have family dinners on Sunday and I would take her for her weekly hair appointments. On Friday afternoons, she would take down her Fostoria crystal tea cups and saucers, and I would bring pastries from Dainty Made Bakery. Some Fridays I would share my newest vintage finds of fabric, buttons, quilt squares, trims…and she would tell me stories about her childhood and wearing skirts made of feed cloth and sleeping under patchwork quilts during her covered wagon adventure from Pennsylvania to Nebraska.


leaning in, a new prayer flag set in the shop

Whenever I find myself surrounded by vintage buttons and fabric and flowers that once adorned Sunday morning hats, I am inspired by Friday afternoon tea with Ada Mae.

All my prayer flag sets are inspired by Tibetan Buddhist prayer flags and Apache burden baskets. Each flag represents a prayer, wish, hope, dream to be sent out into the world. The pockets on the flags are intended to carry your burdens, hopes, worries, and so on that are then released into the world as the flags blow in the breeze. 


i open my heart, a new prayer flag set in the shop

This new series of prayer flags, inspired by afternoons with Ada Mae and created while singing along with The Weepies and Paul Simon and wishing for spring, can now be found in my little shop.


seeking stillness, a new prayer flag set in the shop

finding my way to here.

liz lamoreux


When I began sewing again (after my twenty-year break), I was very enamored with all the new, retro-inspired fabrics out there (of course I still am). My first trip to Fabric Depot with Kelly found me knee-deep in Amy Butler fabrics and Anna Maria Horner fabrics and I was officially swooning over the moon in love with sewing. I began to create bags and aprons and other fun things.

Around this same time, I was also beginning to collect stuff that was filling all the nooks in my little room. My first ArtFest experience in 2006 had inspired me to begin to seek the stories found in old things, so trips to antique stores and thrift shops became part of my routine. I remember the day I discovered pink vintage buttons that looked like flowers. I stood there in that thrift shop with my eyes wide. I think I was basically overcome by the cuteness of this simple color and all those happy flower shapes.

Somewhere along the way, I began to realize that this collecting and story seeking was actually a piece of my grieving process and part of what I was doing was filling in my heart’s cracks. (I wrote about this idea again recently.) As I wrote stories for the bags, prayer flags, and other things I was creating, I was beginning to tell the stories of the women who came before me while also bringing in my own story and perhaps your story too. My idea journals became filled with different ways to tell these stories.

In 2008, I took part in my first big show. I immediately had plans to debut several new lines of creations. I was overflowing with ideas and the excitement of all the people I would meet who would "get" my obsession with vintage sewing stuff. However, as the show got closer and closer, many of the ideas I had jotted down gave way to creating bags and pillows that I “thought would sell,” and I became pretty consumed with sewing in an assembly line.

While talking to a friend during this time, I shared one of these ideas that was still on paper: prayer flags made from vintage sewing bits and vintage handkerchiefs. She so sweetly commissioned four sets from me pronto! to give as gifts during her upcoming travels at the time. I stopped my assembly line work for a few days in order to create those flags. My heart was so happy brainstorming and creating those sets with the little bits of hand sewing and vintage paper and stories. I thought I would immediately create more for the Farm Chicks Show. But the assembly line sewing (and gathering and packaging other cute vintage sewing items to sell) began again. The ideas that deeply inspired me settled back into the idea journal. Because I do have a day job too, I was in this place of learning how a person can truly only do so much.

One of the lines I did create was skirts in the Ada Mae line (you can see a few here). I used vintage quilt pieces and vintage fabric yo yos and other things to create these fun flowers that I appliquéd onto thrifted skirts. And even though I loved this look so much and thought it was so very Farm Chicks (and had so many other ideas sketched out for bags and aprons and oh how the list goes on, some of which are actually partly made but still in pieces somewhere in the piles in the little room), the show was a different kind of learning experience than I expected. Lots of people came into my booth and loved it (photos of the booth here), but the phrase we heard over and over that weekend was, “Oh I LOVE this idea! I am going to go home and make something just like this.” One woman came back to the booth three times to try to figure out one of my patterns. People were stopping by the booth and jotting down ideas right in front of me.

Even though I had a lovely time (it is an incredible show and the ladies and vendors there are beyond amazing [no joke people] and I really wish I would have been able to go back to the show to at least shop since then), I came home a bit disheartened and pretty burned out from all the assembly line sewing. And after listening to so many people talk about how they were going to create things just like I created, I started guarding my sewing ideas so close to my chest that many of them never made there way out of the idea journals. And then I would see other etsy sellers and bloggers who were also inspired in similar ways (not by me...as my ideas were still tucked inside moleskines but rather we were clearly all finding inspiration in creating with vintage fabric and doilies and quilt pieces and other things) and I didn't want to seem like I was "jumping on a bandwagon" of sorts. Oh how the swirling of the mind can push us away from what we want to do.

Still, my collection of vintage sewing bits and handkerchiefs and thread and lace and buttons and how the list goes on continued to grow. And, the idea of the Ada Mae line plus creating more prayer flags has been on my mind for months now. Some days when I walk into the little room, it is as though this vintage ephemera is whispering stories that must be told…

But life has been so full; 2009, the year of manifesting, was full. I had a book to write and retreats to plan and suddenly found myself sick each day for the last several weeks of the year. And finding time to sew just wasn’t on the to do list for a bit.

When the first draft of my book was in and I began to feel better, I took out my idea journal and started flipping through some pages and I let go of the need to listen to the naysaying inner voice. I found myself gathering lace and doilies and ribbon and linen and buttons and paper. I brought baskets and boxes to the kitchen table along with my sewing machine and turned on the music and I began to sew the stories together again in the form of prayer flags…


And I am having so much fun.

Thanks for reading all of this. I just wanted to share part of the process of it all...how my journey brings me here...how listening to what inspires you is sometimes hard but yet something we should give ourselves permission to do more often...how it is okay to be inspired by the same things others are inspired by as you stay true to your own "take" on that inspiration...how sometimes it is okay to admit things didn't go as planned...how it all part of the path...

The photos in this post are a sneak peek. I will share more photos and the stories behind the Ada Mae line and the prayer flags I create tomorrow.

brave. know. love.

liz lamoreux

alki wind

breathing in . alki beach self-portrait

i am the tumbled dusty pink scallop shell
i am the whispering knee-high indiana fields


know, a new soul mantra in the shop

i am the tucked inside your pocket talisman
i am the moment she said yes
i am the sunset-streaked wave

this is me

this is me . alki beach . photo by jon

i am resting inside truth
i am walking through laughter
i am twirling inside what my heart knows

i am . brave

i am . brave, a new soul mantra in the shop

i am brave
i am hope
i am love


love, a new soul mantra in the shop


these phrases are whispering, no, singing inside my heart on this day.
i am hope. i am brave. i am twirling inside what i know. i am love. i am...

in this moment...who are you?
i'd love to know...

thoughts on a rainy monday night.

liz lamoreux

new all dressed up necklaces in the shop

i am so thankful that yesterday included sunshine so i could take photos of my new creations...before the (supposed) ten days of rain began today. ten days of rain. i am hoping the sun will decide to show up in the midst of it all as spring just doesn't quite seem like spring without some sun peppered in here and there.

lately, i have been realizing (or maybe a better word is acknowledging) that this crazy, wonderful life i lead needs some more organization. more than just the house stuff i am always in the midst of (or...ahem...ignoring). organization in the "to do" today/this week/this month sort of way. i need to be able to check things off.

i am wondering, do any of you use an online organizer? or do you find the binder organizers are a better way to go? i use the computer so much with all the job hats i wear, that an online organizer seems to make sense (and [she writes as she rolls her eyes at herself] i fear i might misplace a binder in the chaos that is the messy.ness of this home).

and since i am asking questions, i would also love to know what you are listening to these days. i am heading across the country in a week and would love some new tunes (or books or podcasts) to download to my iPod.

hope things are beautiful in your corner of the world...

a sale, a giveaway, a little hope

liz lamoreux

a sale

I thought I would have a little spring cleaning sale over in my etsy shop, the little room.

Everything is 20% off the listed price for the next few days. After you buy something through etsy, just wait to pay until you receive a revised invoice from me through paypal that reflects the sale price.

This morning, the grey and the rain came back to visit; I found myself sighing thinking it would stay all day. I sent out a little whisper of hope that the sun would push through the clouds a bit, just for a while. This evening, the blue sky peeked out from behind the grey and we have the windows open again to all that spring has brought us. It astounds me sometimes what a little blue sky and the windows open can do for a person, can do for an outlook, can do for a heart.

Tonight, I feel hope blooming a bit as the sun shines through the window. As I walk this current path on my journey, this path of grief mixed with beautiful happiness, this path of life, I find letting hope bloom to be a little gift I can give myself.

I thought it might be fun to share some of that hope through a giveaway today:


A new soul mantra necklace "hope.full" (spelled in that SARK-inspired sort of way).

To win this necklace, just leave a comment sharing a piece of hope you have in your heart, in your world...

updated 4/27: comments are now closed. thank you for all your incredible pieces of hope....

all dressed up...

liz lamoreux

a betty afternoon

betty models the new (all dressed up) soul mantra necklaces

i have been having fun with vintage beads lately and am introducing a new line of soul mantra necklaces to the shop. because of the sparkles added to them, i am calling this the "all dressed up" soul mantra line.

a new day, (an all dressed up) soul mantra necklace

each necklace includes a soul mantra pendant along with a gathering of a few vintage baubles. the colors of these beads are making me so happy. i had such fun while taking product photographs in different ways.

have faith, (an all dressed up) soul mantra necklace

the truth is that product photos are so important on etsy, and i have often struggled with them. but lately, i have been thinking of other ways to bring interest to the photos, so that someone will take that step and "click" to investigate more. we so often fail to discuss the marketing side of our little shops. i know it might feel uncomfortable to admit that we are hoping someone will click and investigate what we have made. yet, isn't that what we are hoping for? i think it is safe to simply admit that yes, this is true.

while taking these new photos, i realized i could capture the pieces of these necklaces that make me so happy: the colors, the shapes of the beads, the words...

be, (an all dressed up) soul mantra necklace

and even though i was freezing (snow on the crocuses this weekend), it felt good to push myself and play. it is a gift to again be invited to look at the lesson that reminds me that it is when our hearts are the most open, when a smile tugs at our mouths, when we can stand back and say, "yes. love this," that this is when we know we are really doing it. this is when we understand why we were lead on our path to this moment.

and even though sometimes the path is so full of tangled thorny brush, i am grateful that the path brings me to a day in march where the sun shines on my head and i can take photos of what i have created and i can smile and just breathe it all in.

one (powerful) word

liz lamoreux

one (powerful) word brass soul mantra necklaces, available here (thanks to jen for the processing)

Head on over to Ali's blog today to learn about "one little word." Ali chooses one word each year as a focus for that year and invites her readers to do the same. In her post, she explains the idea behind "one little word" and has a giveaway that includes a chance to win one of three creations inspired by this project, including a necklace from The Little Room. I have already really enjoyed reading the comments for her readers that include their words and reasons why. There is also a discount code for all Soul Mantra necklaces (good for the entire month of January...so you might want to check it out).

If you visit my shop today, you will find that I now have a new series of necklaces called "one (powerful) word." After spending so much time thinking about and literally twirling inside hope this fall, especially on election day and the days that followed (along with many other people in this country...in this world), I have been deeply thinking about how focusing on one word can push us to action and change the direction of our lives. My hope is that these necklaces will invite you to think about the words that you need in your life...the words you want to surround yourself with on your journey as you breathe and live and walk tall in your life.

I have also added three new Soul Mantra necklaces: Inhale . Exhale, Trust In This Moment (pictured below), and Just Hold On.

trust in this moment (soul mantra necklace)

In addition, you will see some new brass and sterling shapes available for pendants. And I have added round silver nickel pendants, which are perfect if you like the look of sterling but would like to spend a bit less.

There have also been some slight adjustments to pricing (including the lowering of the price of some sterling silver necklaces). I have finally figured out a custom necklace approach; so you will see new "custom" listings for "one (powerful) word" necklaces and the "custom soul mantra" necklaces that are for pendants with embellishments and multiple words.

And just for fun: as I was updating the shop last night, I decided to have a little impromptu apron sale. All aprons are currently 25% off!

a day for doing it my way, selma patchwork apron

Thank you so much for supporting my little shop this year! I greatly appreciate the opportunity to share my creations with you. It makes me smile to think about all the adventures the aprons, bags, scarves, and necklaces take on their journeys in your corners of the world.

an update, a deep breath, and heading to bed early

liz lamoreux

bettys sunday style

betty's style on day 2

we had a really wonderful weekend at urban craft uprising. this was such an incredible event. loved it. loved the people there, the delightful customers, the shopping...i hope to do it again next year. seriously, the folks who put on this show rocked.

and jon was a huge help...even staying up with me on friday night to get all the last minute things done, helping me all day saturday, cutting out more felt circles because the garlands sold out and i needed to make more, and helping me all day sunday. what a sweetheart that man of mine is.

the exhaustion set in late sunday night and i have yet to recover. a chest cold of some sort has decided to settle in for a visit. i am drinking lots of tea and wearing scarves and several blankets as i try to catch up on editing. i am also wishing i could find a tea for colds that doesn't taste like anise (ideas anyone?).

the bundled up with hot cocoa and the new yorker scarf

the bundled up with hot cocoa and the new yorker scarf, available here

betty and i had a photoshoot yesterday morning, and i have updated the shop with a few things, including patchwork aprons, scarves, new blossoms made out of ties that used to live in my dad's closet, and a few lots of dots garland. if you need something in time for christmas, note that i will be shipping items until december 19th. (i will also be adding a few more items here and there this week as i continue to process the photos.)

lots of dots 1

lots of dots garland, available here

but now it is time for bed...
i will share my december views and sounds of the season soon...
hoping things are beautiful in your world today...