Holiday Open House!


You are invited to a




Sunday, Nov. 4, from Noon to 4 p.m. in Arlington Heights, IL  (email greensheepjo [at] gmail [ dot] com for the address)


Participating Vendors include: 

Bob’s Wine Bottle Lights

Embelysh Inc.

Marcia’s Cards

M.E. Designs

Mini Massage by Back In Balance

Peace Beads

RL Photography

The Green Sheep

Usborne Books

Willow House  Jewelry by Sara Blaine

Willow House Style For Home 

Zee’s Tees

My friend Kathy, who I met over a Green Sheep blanket, is hosting this wonderful open house in her own home. I’m honored to be a part of it! If you live in the area, please come. Email me at greensheepjo [at] gmail [dot] com to get the street address. There’ll be refreshments and raffles in addition to a wide assortment of gifts. You’ll find great ideas for family, friends, teachers, hostesses, and even you. We’re all working hard to put on a great day for you!

“The Original”

Three years ago, my youngest daughter opened an old copy of the now-defunct Cottage Living magazine to an article about Caroline Unruh and her company called Sweet Felt Goods. The “sweet felt goods” are her incredible blankets made from recycled sweaters. I’d never heard of such a thing before! My daughter said, “I think you’d like doing something like this.”

The blankets in the article and the mentioned website (no longer active) were beautiful, colorful, intriguing. It piqued my interest to try to figure out how to do it. So I went online and found out about all the things people were making out of recycled and felted wool sweaters. I really had no idea!

I studied other people’s work for some time, then went around the house and collected all the old wool knit things we no longer wore. I picked up a couple more from a thrift store. And then I set about felting my very first batch of wool sweaters.

In there was a sweater I had bought for my soon-to-be husband on my last trip with my family just two weeks before our wedding, on the Greek island of Mykonos (the cream with brown detail):

Also in there are the hand-knit woolen long-underwear made for my husband when we lived in the People’s Republic of China and taught English for two years early in our marriage. Winters indoors were very cold where we lived, and long underwear was a necessity. In the photo below, can you see the four teeny holes lined up along the lower edge of the brown? That’s where the drawstring threaded through those long-johns to keep them on my hubby.

I cut everything in strips by hand with my old fabric scissors, laid out the pieces until I liked them, and finally sewed them together. Oh my, and how could I ever have known how I would fall in love with the wool and how addictive the process would become??

This blanket has become very well-loved and well-used in these three years. It keeps us warm for movie night, snuggles well for Sunday afternoon naps, has gone on sleep-overs and retreats, and is often being hunted down because it moves from room to room so frequently.

It’s also huge, about 70″ by 90″, which makes it great for two on the couch and provides extra coverage on top of a queen bed.

With affection, I present the blanket that started everything:

The Original (size: 70″ x 90″)

The blanket happily belongs to the owner of this blog and her family :)

TheGreenSheep blog in 2010 (this blog’s platform) recently sent me this interesting little meter and accompanying comments.   Thank you, each one of you, for making these first several months a fun blogging experience!

The stats helper monkeys at mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads This blog is on fire!.

Crunchy numbers

A Boeing 747-400 passenger jet can hold 416 passengers. This blog was viewed about 2,100 times in 2010. That’s about 5 full 747s.

In 2010, there were 24 new posts, not bad for the first year! There were 113 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 109 mb. That’s about 2 pictures per week.

Your busiest day of the year was October 27th with 217 views. The most popular post that day was “Box of Chocolates”.

Just for Fun

Now here’s a treat for you, with a nod to the great animals that contribute their wonderful wool for us to use– “Lambs Go Bananas,” posted by kfbear55.  The best part starts at 1:35. (The link will take you to YouTube to watch.)  Have a happy, healthy, and lively 2011!

A happy open house

Thank you to everyone who came on over to the open house last weekend!  Between you and the sunshine we had, it was a beautiful day.  Friends Jamie and Ismael brought their wares as well (tote bags and animals by Jamie and homemade fresh salsa by Ismael), daughter Grace baked the very delicious buckwheat cheese straws from Heidi Swanson’s 101 Cookbooks blog, friend Deborah provided the colorful flowers, and daughter Hope set up her iPod’s collection of Christmas music.  I felt blessed by the presence of all!

Getting ready…

I’m vacuuming up the house after my sew-a-thon of the past week, getting ready for The Green Sheep’s open house this weekend.  There are new baby lovies, new mittens, sachets, coasters (!), wraps, and of course, blankets.  I hope you are able to stop in, enjoy the company, and see what’s here.  If you need directions, contact me at