Blog Archives

What do a seamtress and a coffee roaster have in common?

Community.

That’s what a seamstress/creative and a world class coffee roaster have in common.

“When people talk, community happens”Becky McCray

IMG_4889

Me and Jo

(And let me tell you…. Jo and I can TALK!!)

We are a community. A community of entrepreneurs. A community of women. A community of small town advocates. A community of creatives . A community of givers and do-ers~It only takes two to be part of a ‘community’

~The funny thing about our “community” is that we don’t even live in the same town. Not even the same part of the state!~

I met Jo Kahlifa , at a local Pride of Dakota event a number of years ago. We instantly became friends and have since done a number of exciting things jointly both personally and with our businesses. ( check out MoJo Roast and read about her and the coffees)

IMG_4902The fact that we are a “community”  was driven home this past week when we attended an OTA conference. (NorthDakOTA,MinnesOTA,SouthDakOTA)  Part of the purpose was to bring together creatives from towns across a tri-state area to help transform where we live into great , re-envisioned communities. Places where people once again gather and talk to each other instead of about each other. Communities where roots are put down and dreams are realized.

Community matters. In so many ways. And Community is not always where you live. Often it is what you do.

~Katy~

 

 

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The last Pattern Maker~This is the story of US

A story of US. Of America. Of Small Business. Of Dreams. Of Passion. Of love of craft.

People who love their craft, live it every day.

I just saw this video today, and I was simply moved. Not by the memories of my Grammy who was a noted seamstress  in San Francisco, nor because I am also a creative type.

But because this grand lady, Chris Ellsberg, lives and loves her craft of pattern making. By ‘craft’ I do NOT mean ‘crafting’… It’s more like craftsmanship, or trade.

You see, Chris is a pattern maker. One of the last the United States.  It is an old trade. One that is difficult to master.

In her 80’s now, Chris strutted into Raleigh Denim Workshop   and volun-told  the owners, Victor & Sara, that she was going to work there. (Love her Moxie!!) For  FREE, until they could afford to pay her.

She has been passing on her knowledge and love of craft to a new generation.   It is thrilling to watch their story unfold.

I would love to meet them all! It sounds like they are a ‘family’ working at Raleigh Denim Workshop.

Helping each other to hold fast the dreams.

I am inspired. This story has so many lessons we can all learn from. Lessons about community, giving, teaching and inspiring. Of holding on and letting go.

It is much, much more than just a story of an old woman and a young couple.

~Katy~

 

 

The Fashionably Fabulous SakHat™ ~

SakHat ~ What is it???

Nicole modeling her hat

The fashionably fabulous SakHat is just what the name implies. A hat made from a sack! Mainly they are made from repurposed burlap and linen coffee/feed/seed bags.

Get one now!

Get one now!

Many of the bags I use are vintage.

Sustainable Couture.

Buffalo Style.

I love being able to make design fashionable, useable items! These are my way of merging America’s agricultural history with fabulous vintage graphics into something new and exciting. Each one is fully lined.

You can wear your SakHat  while on the river or on your yacht.

Nicole on the River

Nicole on the River

On your horse, in the garden, at work, the beach, the football game, camping, glamping, bicycling… anywhere!

Nora in KY loves hers!

Nora in KY loves hers!

Wear it to shade or eyes or just to show off a unique fashion accessory! Either way- you’ll look fabulous!

Order yours at http://www.buffalogalsmercantile.comcom or click here SakHat

~**Custom orders and special requests are always welcome**~ and latest creations can be seen on our Buffalo Gals Mercantile FB page.

~Katy~

 

I am “Country Woman” ~ hear me roar!

Every year Farm and Ranch Guide puts on a Country Woman of the Year contest.

People are supposed to write in why they think their woman should win…. But there are guidelines… Community involvement, Special deeds, Involvement with the daily operations etc.  ~  This implies all manner of things.DSCN5883

Most of the women nominated log long hours in real production in crops and livestock, they are active in church and volunteer for nearly everything, blah- blah- blah. All without a hair out of place. You know the types.

Don’t get me wrong~I am not disparaging them in any way. Many of the nominated women are my neighbors. Some of them have won. I admire these women.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I asked Hubby once WHY he didn’t nominate me. He said because I am none of those things, but am Everything to him. (and that he sucks at writing)

That being said- I AM a Country Woman of the Year… Day in and day out. Year after year.

I don’t need a contest to tell me so. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

“I can bring home the Bacon…. Fry it up in a pan…….”  Remember that commercial? That about sums it up.

In my little world, I am the one who raises the kids and attends school functions, nurses the bottle babies (Calves and Kitties alike), bakes fresh bread every couple days, Cooks from scratch every meal, minds the garden, cans more goods than a grocery store, gate girl when it’s blizzarding and -30 out, sews and mends, shuffles hubby and vehicles from field to field, watches the markets, tracks the weather, brings him lunch in OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAthe field, never ever calls him when he’s out with the guys, works from home, goes to church, does the parts running, beer fairy,  handles correspondence and the usual round of maid chores too. I  put a good spin on things when they go awry and make hubby feel better about it.  I  am20140906_173647 constantly championing small business in rural communities, attend Downtowners Conferences on my own dime and time so I can better myself and my community, make a quilt every year to donate for raffle at charity, finds the humor in the dark times, mend broken hearts and bruised egos, teach the kids to dream, keeper of the memories and family stories, teaches others how to bake and sew, butchers chickens with the best of them, run a small business of my own, don’t complain when our plans are cancelled yet again 20141128_101658(1)because ‘We have to go to the field, NOW’, I know that  boots DO go with everything, and more. ~ I know that there are 3 big social functions (4 in a good year!) … Two farm shows and a Pheasants  4ever banquet (you can sub- cattlemans, DU or whatever)  If it’s a good year- a trip the fair gets tossed in. Otherwise my social engagements are solo.

Things I won’t or don’t do? I refuse to ever again “Hold that panel, damnit!” when the BULL is making a break for it nor do I drive his big boy toys.

I am proud to support my Hubby- an American Farmer-  behind the scenes in all these little ways.

~Katy~

An easier way to make buttonholes!

…. Get a machine that does them!!!

There. That simple.

Grammy M's machine

Grammy M’s machine

I need this fabric!

I need this fabric!

Buttonholes are my nemesis. I have never liked them. I am proficient at making them. BY HAND.

I have a 1960 Kenmore and a 1960 Singer, both I love dearly. I even have attachments for making button holes “with help”…

However, I never mastered that part.

But I can do crazy good HANDSEWN buttonholes.

This year I have acquired TWO killer updated machines.. A Serger from a great friend, and a regular “newer” Kenmore from the mama-in-law.

. Both make AUTOMATIC buttonholes! Yeah!

Happy Day!

Sewing for Victory!

 

I have decided to join the Sew For Victory challenge. I stumbled onto to the Lucky Lucille blog.  And that’s how I foundvictory out about the challenge.
The goal is to sew an outfit from the 1940’s.
I think…NO…I KNOW  I can!!  My Grammy Helen was an accomplished seamstress and taught me many tricks. Grammy sewed for San Francisco’s upper crust. Many of mgrammyy outfits in the 70’s were made with scraps from these ladies. 😉

In fact, I sew on my other Grammy’s 1960 Kenmore !!

Though I will say I was NEVER a fan of polyester!

My Grammy learned to sew very, very young. And later as a war bride, she learned to make do with whatever was at hand. Including flour sacks.

It’s interesting that off and on over the years I have used the skills I didn’t really realize I had, to earn a living!

So in memory of her, I am doing the Sew for Victory Challenge.  I have not quite decided on a pattern yet, though I have an idea of what I want. The 1940’s were a great time for ladies fashions. Very flattering and feminine.

Lucky for me, I happen to posses a number of vintage 1940’s patterns… (Shhhhh… don’t tell!…taken from Grammy’s ‘stash’)  Ranging from kidspattern3pattern1 clothes and aprons to evening wear….

Keep an eye out for updates on my outfit!

~Katy~

 

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