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by Rebecca on April 11th, 2016

Ivy & Co is a living breathing effort. And though our staff is small, there are important day to day operations. Like this one- Watching The Office.

I find that as I sew, my mind wanders, and not always to a happy-go-lucky place. I start fretting about the future, about relationships, my parenting skills... what the heck?! Get my brain out of the gutter! So today I started playing season one of The Office on Netflix. I plan on watching all 9 seasons while sewing. Partly for the distraction, by mainly for the laughs. Fun Fact: did you know that in the first 3 episodes they mention Hillary Rodham Clinton AND Donald Trump?! Love it. So before their time.

Moving on. I sewed a zipper completely inside out. True story. Thank God for a seam ripper, but it sucks when you need one!

Tell me you've seen the youtube video that went viral with this quote "Ain't nobody got time for that"? OMG, you haven't?! HIL-AR-I-OUS. Click here to watch!
Prior to giving birth, I had great dreams for my daughter's wardrobe. She would look like a mini Gap model. Tailored jeans, vests, smart tank tops, a scarf or hat. Model scouts were going to come flocking. Well, on this Reality Show Monday, I will come clean and tell you that I rarely make the namesake of this company wear what I want her to wear. I never thought I'd be the type of mom to let my kid out of the house committing every fashion faux pas, but now I see it as her bold and bright freedom of expression.
Ivy never ceases to amaze me when she debuts her daily outfit. It usually always includes some loud leggings. Here we see:

Turquoise Star Tank - Target
Overalls - Gap Outlet
Chunky Knit Cardigan - Gap Outlet
Heart Leggings - Old Navy
Mermaid Slippers - Havaianas
To the right you see a rare glimpse of an outfit we somehow collaborated on:

Me: "Do you want to wear this dress?" (Gap, collar, button down, green floral)
Ivy: "Sure."
Me: "How about your new cardigan?" (Target, black knit)
Ivy: "Yeah. But I need leggings."
Me: "How about these?" (solid black from Walmart!)

She chose black-ish Roxy slippers. and a yellow headband from Etsy. Good job, Ivy!

It's a winner! Too bad she came home with orange paint all over the back of her dress. Oh well. It was amazing while it lasted. Here's a glimpse of a few more epic #ivystyle outfits:
To conclude this reality show, I'll get a little deeper than fashion and TV Shows. I've been debating a lot about which direction to go with Ivy & Co. Here's how it's worked up until this point: I set goals. I meet those goals. My dilemma now is that my goals are getting loftier and I'm not confident that I can meet them, or... don't judge me... that I want to meet them! If you know me, you know I'm EXTREMELY Type A. So these loftier goals scare me a little! Do I want to be a maniac working 24/7 in order to reach them? Are they in alignment with the overall vision for Ivy & Co.?

As I look at my messy house, my meager attempts at cooking meals, and my wavering personal hygiene (oh wheeeerrre is my hairbrush?!... name the song), I find myself wanting to pull back the reigns just a little bit, and LIVE SIMPLY. What can I realistically accomplish in a day? How many days a week should one actually work? How do I leave my work, well, at work? You know, if I were to assess any other Type A person's occupational choices, I would have some great advice for them! I really need to have an outer body experience so that I can take a look at myself from the outside! Or maybe I should stop overanalyzing and just keep watching The Office.
I'm loving these pins. (And the company actually sent me 2x what I ordered and paid for!) They're $5 and available in shop and online now. Choose one and make it your mantra.
Thanks for listening to my ramblings. Until next Monday...
(owner, Ivy & Co.)

by Rebecca on February 22nd, 2016

Ivy & Co. how to recover a vintage train case
This post was originally posted on July 10, 2014, on Jed & Ivy.

I love my aunt Jaymee. She gets me. At age 1 she would put red lipstick on me. They're some of my favorite pictures to look at from childhood. We've always lived on opposite sides of the Pacific, but when I went to college in California, I actually could drive and meet her for lunch. She would buy me Starbucks gift cards, (which I loved!) and she let me crash in her guest room whenever I needed.

A few years ago, Ivy, my mom and I went on a trip to California to visit family and friends. I got an awesome vintage train case from my aunt (see pic on right). She actually had them just chillin in the trunk of her car and willingly gave one to me and one to my best friend. Little did she know that gift gave huge definition to my decor style, and that I would rip out its guts and give it a whole new look. 

I've actually picked up quite a few more train cases since then, and have been remodeling their insides ever since. Here's my tutorial, just in case you're lucky enough to have one lying around.

What To Do With A Vintage Train Case

Train cases are the perfect catch-all. Of course you can revert to their original use and store your beauty products in them, but I've also used them to hold remotes, DVDs, lotion and perfume bottles, jewelry and even jars of coins. Kids love 'em - Ivy had a mini one that she would put her "treasures" in. There's a pin on Pinterest of a yellow one holding baby supplies like diapers, wipes and burp cloths. I love that! I'm all about cleaning up old things and making them clean, cute, and usable.
Ivy & Co. how to recover a vintage train case

So how do you achieve that awesome inside? Let's take a look at what some actually look like inside, before the transformation:
Ivy & Co. how to recover a vintage train case
Keep in mind they usually smell like cigarettes and wet dog.
Ivy & Co. how to recover a vintage train case

How To Recover The Inside Of Your Train Case

1. Tear out the insides, save for a possible template. 
2. Scrub the insides with a soapy rag, baking soda, a magic eraser, something! These things smell like old dog and cigarettes. I have yet to find one that doesn't wreak. 
3. Pour ground coffee in the train case, close it up, and let it sit for a week. 
4. Clean out the coffee and febreeze it, or spray essential oils, do something!
5. Find a base material to give it a slight cushion-y layer to smooth imperfections. Here's what I've used: felt, fake "snow" from Christmas time (the kind in rolls), and pieces of my sweat pants that I cut off cause they were too long.
Ivy & Co. how to recover a vintage train case
Here's what mine looked like with sheets of fake "snow" in it. I used modge podge loosely painted on the inside of the train case for an overall adhesion, and then used a glue gun for the edges of the base material to  keep it in place more securely.
Ivy & Co. how to recover a vintage train case
6. Next, cut out a piece of fabric to go in the bottom of the train case. It can be a square, with rounded or slit edges. It should be bigger than the bottom of the case, so that it goes up the sides of the case. Do the same thing for the lid of the case. Every time your cut out a piece of fabric, iron it well, because you can't iron it once it goes in the case!
Ivy & Co. how to recover a vintage train case
Your corners can be folded over one another. Use modge podge to initiate the adhesion, then use a glue gun to glue down the edges of the fabric. 
Ivy & Co. how to recover a vintage train case
7. Measure the length from the top (usually metal) edge of the case, down to where the case starts to curve under at the bottom. Measure the circumference of the case. Cut a piece of fabric a little larger than these measurements and sew a seam along the top and bottom edge (It will be a long rectangle that you've cut out, and you will be sewing seams on the two longer sides.) This piece then gets glued around the circumference of the case, starting in the center back, using modge podge and a glue gun on the edges. The top seam edge should lie right below the metal edge of the case. Repeat for the lid of the case. Make sure the edges meet in the center back of the case, near the hinges. 
Ivy & Co. how to recover a vintage train case
Ivy & Co. how to recover a vintage train case
8. The next step could be skipped, but it really puts the icing on the cake: trim! I use a trim to line the edge of the inside of the case, and it really hides any imperfections you might have along the top edge. I've used mini pom poms, and a cotton 3/4" beige ribbon. Just glue gun it on, around the top edge. Again, the ends should meet in the back, near the hinges
Ivy & Co. how to recover a vintage train case
 9. Final step! Cut out a square of fabric, wide enough to cover the hinges, and tall enough to reach the top and bottom edge of the case. (Cut it a little bigger so you have room to turn under the seams). Hem this square on all 4 edges. Glue gun it on the back edge of the train case, to cover all the raw edges you had meet in the back near the hinges. Don't glue gun it on the metal.

Finish it off with some scotch guard or spray modge podge all over the inside of the case, just to stiffen it up a little and make it slightly more durable against stains.
I LOVE recovering these cases. I'm constantly trying to figure out how to get more cases all the way out to me in Hawaii. They're rare gems here! If you've got any you don't want, please mail them to me! Here's my collection of all the cases I've done so far:
Ivy & Co. how to recover a vintage train case
Ivy & Co. how to recover a vintage train case
Ivy & Co. how to recover a vintage train case
Ivy & Co. how to recover a vintage train case
Ivy & Co. how to recover a vintage train case
Thanks for following the Ivy & Co. creative journey. If you LOVE any of these cases feel free pin them. If you have a case of your own, send me a picture! Until next time...

Aloha, Rebecca

by Rebecca on February 19th, 2016

Note: This post was originally written on 11/9/12, when Ivy was 3 years old.
She's now 6 years old and thriving in Kindergarten!
A little background: When Ivy was 3 years old, she was just itching to learn new things! Pre-School wasn't an option for us, so I did what I could to foster her love of knowledge!
So here's a step by step guide to what we did each day, for 10 days, in order to learn A Number A Day:
Step 1- WRITE 

I write out the number on a small white board a few times, with Ivy watching me. Then I have her try and write the number herself. If need be, I make a dotted line version of the number for her to trace, or I help her write the number. 
Step 2- BOOKS

We use a few books that have to do with numbers. We only read up to the page of the number we're on. I don't want to confuse Ivy with all the other numbers at once, but I do want to review the numbers we've already done. I just found books about numbers we already had.

"Count With Me," from a mini Sesame Street collection 
"My Very First Book of Numbers," by Eric Carle
"Ten Little Ladybugs," by Melanie Gerth
Step 3- CLOCK

Next I use a clock (an awesome hand-me-down from my cousin!) and I ask Ivy to find today's number on the clock. I also look around to see if we can find today's number on other household items: calendar, other books, phones, microwave, etc.

Here's the fun part! We get out the play-dough and use the stencil/cookie cutter things (what is the word for those?!) to make today's number in the play-dough. At this point I let her use all the numbers (0-9) to play around with, so they become familiar to her. 

*Be patient! Numbers are new to your child-- kids are not going to learn them all at once or in one day. On one particular day, Ivy insisted that the number 4 was an 'H.' She also gets I, L, and #1 confused. She'll get it as long as I gently correct her and help her remember. She also may get stuck on not being able to remember a number, but it will eventually click a few days later.

*Talk about the numbers throughout the whole day. Ivy points them out on signs, in the grocery store, on TV, license plates. Learning doesn't stop when your "number lesson" is done.

*Try to do it every day, and at the same time every day. I'll be honest, this doesn't happen for us, but when it does, it's better for all of us. Believe me, Ivy asks for it every single day, even later in the day on the days we've already done it! She asks so much that I get a little frustrated! However, if she knows she can expect it at the same time every day, you have some ground to stand on. 

*Fill in other caregivers. Ivy is watched by me, my husband and both of my parents. I let them all know what she's learning so they can be aware of it and help her out it the opportunity presents itself. 

by Rebecca on January 29th, 2016

new music playlist hot tracks jack johnson, christophe beck, tenth avenue north, alessia cara, tom odell
I’m on a roll with music. iTunes is getting a large portion of my paycheck each week!
Here’s 5 more songs for you:

1. Seasick Dream, by Jack Johnson (Yes, that’s a rooster crowing in the beginning)
2. Charlie Countryman, by Christophe Beck & Deadmono (Let’s get emo to soundtrack music)
3. I Need You, I Love You, I Want You, by Tenth Avenue North (Get on your knees and pray)
4. Scars To Your Beautiful, by Alessia Cara (They’re comparing her to Lorde. Kinda not really)
5. Heal, by Tom Odell (Contemporary Dance Piece, for sure)


kid headband boho chic style made in hawaii with aloha straw bag

by Rebecca on January 24th, 2016

hot new songs made in hawaii with aloha
I've got 5 new songs for you to enjoy.
Make a new playlist, rock out to it in your car. Do what you do.

1. Home, by Ingrid Michaelson - (I stole this from my co-worker, Jenna G.)
2. Lost Boy, by Ruth B - (This is for all you Peter Pan fans-- Neverland love)
3. Life of the Party, by Dawin - (I'll make your speakers bang)
4. Sweetest Devotion, by Adele - (Best track on her new album)
5. Come and See, Tal & Acacia - (Inspirational goodness)

You’re welcome. I have more where these came from!

Here's a shot from today's promo shoot. Kids' headband- $12, or 3 for $30.
kids headband made in hawaii with aloha
Aloha, Rebecca