Archive for the ‘Watch This!’ Category

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Farm Fresh From Vermont

Update: The goal was met and Swan&Stone are headed to NYC!!! Thanks to everyone who helped make this possible!!

If you have ever visited my blog you know my love of all things Vermont. Vermont is my happy place. Anytime I get the opportunity to share it, I take that opportunity. And I take it seriously. I have something really special to share today.


It’s not often you see the word millinery. I found Swan&Stone a couple of years back when they were Little Hill Woolworks and bought a hat right then and there!

Collaborators Samantha Stone and Nora Swan, both former New Yorkers, are the brains, hearts and hands behind Swan&Stone. Both have contributed fascinating halves that make the whole of all that is now a thriving millinery housed in The Granary in quintessential, bucolic Brandon, Vermont.

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Robbin, my oldest and dearest friend, and I were treated to a personal tour of Swan&Stone when we were in Brandon last October. Yes, Vermont in October. Heaven on Earth! Our tour guide was Kelly, whom I met through the wonderful world wide web when we were both in business – she owned a handcrafted lollipop business and I owned Dahlem’s Soapworks. I don’t remember exactly how we met, but it was meant to be. Kelly is an amazing mom and friend AND an extraordinary photographer. I have given her credit on the photos that belong to her – though you could probably tell already – they are amazing.


Stepping into Swan&Stone is a feast for the eyes for anyone – but for a couple of women who love Vermont, LOVE handcrafted, LOVE sustainable products, LOVE locavore culture, LOVE farms and sheep and hats…well our breaths were taken away! We tried on hats, admired and admonished our choices, and had an amazing and educational visit with Samantha. I am kicking myself for not purchasing my favorite of the day – a felt beauty that was a little steampunk, a little country with lot of attitude – you know, like me! LOL! The trim on it was bits & bobs of metal found after Hurricane Irene wreaked havoc on beautiful Brandon back in August of 2011.

There are numerous articles written about Swan&Stone online and I will give you links at the end of this post. But the words that are their own are the best. What interesting women, business owners, and artisans. I have to admit, I will never look at hats the same. I say all the time: I wish people still wore hats. WELL, people do! Bold people. Confident people. People who don’t bend and give to the latest fashion trend. That’s what I love about Sam & Nora’s creations – they are timeless. Beautiful, extraordinary, handmade hats for now and forever.


wooden hat blocks


one of a kind hats for men

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hats waiting for embellishments

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LOVE the blue!!

1238936_10202224198471397_6562650_n(from STRUT 2013) photo credit: Kelly McCullough


photo credit: Kelly McCullough

there’s something for everyone!

felt hats, straw hats, fascinators, kids’ hats, hats for brides

These are literally farm to head hats!


photo credit: Kelly McCullough


photo credit: Kelly McCullough


photo credit: Kelly McCullough (I need this one framed)

Now Samantha and Nora have a once in a lifetime chance to show their hats to the world! After a rigorous jury process they have been invited to show and sell their hats at the 2014 Grand Central Holiday Fair! Yes! THAT Grand Central – in New York City! There is a little bump in the road, a catch if you will – the $16K entrance fee. But you know what? This is very doable – and you, me, we can help them meet that challenge head on (no pun intended) and become the famous milliners they are destined to be. I believe in what Swan& Stone is doing. Grass to market isn’t just about food anymore. Every product that is made from sustainable goods should be readily available to consumers who care about that very important factor in producing goods & services. Fine hats should be no exception. So please visit their KickStarter page and contribute.

Every little bit will help them realize their dream.  AND you too can own an original Swan&Stone creation with your contribution.


Please do you and me both a favor and follow the link, visit Swan&Stone’s Kickstarter Page and help this woman owned and operated business show in NYC! You know what they say: If you can make it there, you can make it anywhere. And Samantha and Nora deserve this opportunity – they have worked so hard and offer beautiful handcrafted hats that anyone would love.

Be sure and watch the video on your visit to their kickstarter page. There is also an easy “go to” link in the right column – check it out!

You can read more about Swan&Stone here:

You can also follow them on twitter @ and find them on Face book @


With warmest regards,



Take a quick peek…

at the pie tin for the giveaway:

pietinI am VERY curious about why it says “deposit” on the tin.  Anyone have any ideas?  Curious, don’t you think?  Anywho, there you go…a peek at the tin that will go in this month’s giveaway box.  Pretty cool I think.

I had a very productive day yesterday to spite my melancholy mood over Husband’s departure.  I made this LOVELY apron for a friend.


A friend who has been more than patient with me over the past month.  I just could not get it done while Husband was home.  She understands – her husband works the same kind of shift mine does.

Also we had Michelle and her girls over for supper and a movie.  Brats with macaroni and tomotoes (my brother reminded me of this childhood favorite on his facebook list of favorite foods) and this beautiful strawberry pie that Rachel made for us.


It was just as delicious as it was beautiful! It was a graham cracker crust, custard filling with fresh strawberries and a glaze…OH MY!

And the movie: The Secret Lives of Bees.

lifeofbees2_500I LOVE this movie.  First of all LOVE bees. But you all knew that I think.  I LOVE Queen Latifah.  I loved the book ( I read it when it first came out), LOVED the house.  LOVED how it turned out even with all the heartaches. I grew up during this time in our history…the injustice was hard to watch but it was very honestly portrayed.  The South in the ’60s was a very volatile place.  My hometown was no different.

Okay, that is it for today.  I have to get busy!  I have lots of things to share on here but for today, this is it!  More soon.  Have a great Wednesday!


Speaking of White Lily Flour…

I have only  six 2 pound bags of White Lily Self Rising flour in my possession.  I have been unable to locate more of this size so when this is gone…the biscuit kits maybe gone as well.  So, there are six Biscuit Baking Kits available.  They make great gifts.  So why don’t you pop over and take a look.  Click on the picture for a link to the webshoppe!


and now about the video!

We are still trying to get it uploaded…being a booger!  But hopefully real soon.  If all else fails I will just burn it to DVDs…which was the original plan and evidently the best one!


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