Monday, November 1, 2010

miPhone4 case

So, I have an iPhone4. I hate it. But it will stay in my life for a little while longer, so I have learned to deal with it (not with much grace or charm, but I haven't tossed it out a moving vehicle. Yet.)

Anyway. Due to the dropped calls issue, I purchased a case for the phone. It had a purple plaid fabric back, which was really the main reason for getting it. I told people it was because, although I hadn't made it, I *might* have....

Which leads to today's post. I didn't make the case, but I did make it mine! A little Liberty of London, a little Mod Podge, a bit of painstaking snipping later, and here is the best thing about my iPhone:

Liberty iPhone case

All I did was peel out the old fabric from the case and use it as a pattern for the new fabric. Then a little bit of Mod Podge to hold it down and a little more to seal it...the bumps are from the original glue, and yes, I did trim off a little too much from the bottom corners. It's much more obvious in the pic than the actual case.

Like it?


Monday, October 25, 2010

Pirate Pumpkin Tote Bag

Fun seasonal bag I "whipped up" one evening -- after having thought about it for, oh, six months or so!

pirate pumpkin tote bag

He's adult-sized, so let's hope I get a lot of candy while I'm out trick-or-treating....erm, out taking Leith trick-or-treating!

The little gussets flaps were brought up and stitched with cute little vintage buttons.

detail - button

Made with orange, fine-wale corduroy (cut cross-grain, so the wales run horizontal), black silky fun fur, and some black vinyl for the face shapes. Lining is a turquoise/lime squiggle cotton fabric.


Saturday, October 23, 2010

You think Halloween is Scary?!

How about the fact that "I'm Back!" after five months of no posts?! Now *that* is scary!

Just because there have been no posts doesn't mean there's nothing post-worthy to report. It's more of a moving-house-summer-time-gotta-make-another-life-changing-decision situation that kept me from posting. Or maybe it was just laziness. Nah. Couldn't be just laziness. ;-)

But now there are things to do, places to go, and people to see....some of it's even worth posting about!

First up: an autumn dress with an interesting trim feature.

pumpkin dress

Made with Onion pattern number 20026. This pattern is *fantastic*! I've made it several times in wovens, but this was my first try with a knit. It's as good in knit as it is in woven! The pattern also has a terrific shrug (one piece plus trim) and harem-type pants (haven't attempted them, they're not quite my style...).

My initial thought was to use the orange the 'normal' way and bind/trim the neckline and sleeves and do a folded hem, but the jersey has lots of curl. I didn't want to either waste a bunch of fabric trying to cut from areas that weren't already curled, and I wanted to avoid the hassle of trying to keep the fabric un-curled. That's when the lightbulb went on! Why fight it at all? Knit doesn't (un)ravel, so raw edges would be all right. Especially since this is an obviously seasonal dress (i.e. it didn't have to survive several years and several wearers).

So I played with the curl. Twin stitching holds the trim to the base fabric. Doing the hem band was the hardest part. I learned that adding after the dress sides are sewn would make for a much nicer finish. (I really do hate that the hem trim is stitched into the seam on one side.)

But the curling trim is super cute! There will definitely be more like this.

neckline detail
Detail from the neckline.

sleeve detail
Detail from the sleeve.

Done in a size 110 with extra length added.


Friday, May 21, 2010

Triskaidekaphobia meets ambulosubscalaphobia

There are 13 stairs up to my sewing room....good thing I'm more of a Triskaideka*phile* than phobe!

Triskaidekaphobia  meets ambulosubscalaphobia

The drywall dudes needed a ladder to patch the walls....ambulosubscalaphobia is the unofficial latin for fear of walking under ladders. I really do fear that, so I made John take the picture!


Friday, May 7, 2010

Books, Books and More Books!

We have a library in our now-old house. Well, a pass-through bedroom that we made into a library. Filled with book cases and added shelving. There are also more than a few book cases throughout the now-old house.

books in the living room

Lucky for me, John's in charge of moving all things Library-ish (and Kitchen-ish!) to the new house. You can see he's been pretty busy.

Saturday we'll dismantle the *huge* book case and take it to the new house. It'll be installed in the formal living room and carefully re-filled. Well, not totally. John's been pruning. He has set aside about 25% of the books we own. He says for "further review" -- meaning that he will double-check to be sure we don't "need" them. I think he's hoping I'll take notes for when it comes time to move the little bit of fabric stash that I have.


Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Catching Up

We did manage to close on the house (wayyyy back on April 22!). It was a rather dramatic finish, I must say. What was supposed to have happened at 10:00 a.m. actually got put on hold while bankers discussed how to handle a last-minute negotiated credit. At 4:30 we got a call that everything was ready so we hauled butt down to the title company's office and signed on oh-so-many dotted lines. *whew*

So, it's officially our "new house" now! We're slowly moving things over. Getting estimates for things, having some work done. The list is, thankfully, short:

*roof -- we'll do it in stages; the flat roof first, late next week, then the shingled bit in a couple of months, after our "old house" has sold

*wall paper -- ugh. was not "awful" but definitely NMS (not my style), so we had it professionally removed. Bad news: there's a bit of work to be done on most of the walls. *sigh* Here are a couple of "Before" pictures. The first will be my studio and the second will be Leith's room.

sewing room1

bedroom before - leith

*wall repair and painting -- we have estimates, widely ranging estimates. We're having a remodeler sand and skim the worst bits, and repair a couple of speaker holes (the house has a non-working intercom/speaker system). Hopefully that work will be done by early next week. Then we can figure out the painting thing. We have picked out two of the three necessary colors. At least I've got a little more time to decide on the studio walls!

Great news: there is some *amazing* landscaping. Amazing. I'll get pics this week, since it seems the clouds and cold seem to have moved on....

"Meh" news: the tennis court's in less-than-stellar condition. Several large cracks with weeds growing. lol We'll get it cleaned up and filled in, but we're probably going to have it ripped out at some point and put in some additional patio, a play ground-ish area and some actual lawn.

I'm excited to have some new projects! Yes, it's a hassle to move, deciding what to keep (and where to put it) and what to garage sale/donate. It's also kind of fun to review what we have, where it came from and think about using it in a new space.

Leith cried today when I sold "her favorite toy EVER" -- no worries. It wasn't even a toy! It was a Little Tykes book case. She was consoled with a bit of brownie.

Picture tour coming soon!


Thursday, April 15, 2010

Much Randomness

Have had a couple of good/fun days lately. Super excited about our new house -- we close next Thursday!

**The local craigslist has been a great source for new-to-us items. We've purchased a sink/faucet/garbage disposal from a guy who was doing a remodel. Which means that we can get rid of our old, dodgy sink/faucet from the '80s and leap into the 21st century (yeah, I *know* it's 10 years old!), for less than the price of a new-new faucet. So, the incredibly heavy sink is in the back of the truck until the handyman gets here. Which won't be until some time after I call him....where's that number again?

**Great Find #2 on craigslist: I've purchased two shelves to use as a base for the cutting table! Great price, perfect size! Pretty sure I'll be building/buying two more, longer shelves for the rest of the base. Great storage, eh?

cl shelves

**Leith is growing by leaps and bounds. It's (usually) so much fun to talk with her and watch her mind at work. A couple of things she's said lately:

She and I were in the car, waiting for John. Leith took off her shoes and, for whatever reason, was smelling her feet. I know. Then she says: "hey mom. my toes smell like hotdogs." (why she thinks that I'll never know. Pretty sure she's never, ever, had a hotdog!)

Today she said: "hey mom. when do we cancel again?" I say: "cancel? cancel what honey?" She says: "cancel and move to our new house." I about busted a gut laughing. She meant "close" -- but "cancel's a good substitute.


Sunday, April 11, 2010

Happy Birthday Christy (Nelson dot Net, TM)!!

What better way to give a first look at a birthday-present-for-a-blogger than through a blog post?!

Today is my friend's birthday. Christy is an awesome blogger and crafter, a great mom to her two adorable kids, and a good friend. She is also crazy about Neil Diamond.

Christy's husband Carl (a great guy in his own right) is out of town today doing super cool, top secret, work stuff. Okay, not top secret, but the point is he's out of town and now Christy has to spend her birthday without him. [awwwwwwww]

Even though your husband's out of town, and Neil isn't returning your calls, it doesn't mean you can't have a huggable substitute!

perfect for snuggling

the back

Just so you know, Christy, it took a lot of money, time and effort to create this pillow case. (HA!) Actually, the main part is a t-shirt from the thrift store (yay GW 99c day!!), a hot wash and dry, a few cuts and serged seams, then voila! An envelope-back pillow case that's just perfect for a snuggle while listening to Neil crooning and missing your husband.

Have a happy birthday Christy and I hope you like your present!


Friday, March 26, 2010

Under Contract

For a House!

John and I have signed on the dotted line and are under contract to buy a new-to-us house in Lincoln!

house front2

So many good things about it: size, location, condition. Specifically, it's almost 3,000 square feet, we gain a huge garage. It's in the Sheridan Elementary school district, soclose to the bike trail, and it's still in central Lincoln (which we *love*). It's a 1947 ranch with additions that include attaching the garage, a room above the garage (can you say sewing space?!), and an updated kitchen/great room.

We'll be doing some minor updating and a few DIY projects, but it's pretty much move-in ready. Closing is in April. I'm so excited!!


Thursday, January 28, 2010

Found: My Crafting Mojo!!

It's been lost for a while. Since October some time....loads of reasons why, but they don't matter anymore. It seems I've found it again and that's what's important!

I'll be busy making some toddler aprons tomorrow and Monday. Will be delivering some to a bakery in Fremont (Alotta Brownies, you should check it out!). Owned by a friend of mine from High School. So about five years ago now. ;-)

Also need to re-stock at the Pleasantview Gallery in the Haymarket and B Inspired in Central City. I'm so excited that the aprons are such a hit! Well, it shouldn't be too surprising. They are super cute! I use a much modified version of the Montessori By Hand apron. She has tons of great patterns available on her website. I'm the proud owner of several of them! I hear great things about her book,'s been added to my Amazon wishlist...

In other crafty news: I have finally decided on a pattern for Leith's 4th birthday quilt!! This is very exciting because I knew sort of what I wanted, but somehow nothing was really clicking. I've been hoarding scads of Japanese novelty-ish fabrics, especially fairy tales, and Heather Ross (esp. Munki Munki) fabrics, just to make this quilt.

Inspiration struck yesterday. I was flipping through my current issue (Feb 2010) of Quilter's World and there it was. The Diamond Candy quilt! Pretty sure it's a version of the Irish Chain (maybe Triple?). I've modified the magazine's pattern a bit, and figured out the "easiest" way to assemble the block. Now I'm in the process of auditioning fabrics. Whooo hoooo!

I'll update the blog as I go -- a sort of quilt-along if you will! Hopefully that will keep me on track because I need 48 blocks and each has 13+ a small border that may have additional pieces. Soooo 48 times 13 is (mmmm, 24, carry the two, 12, 14, one, hmmm) 648 pieces. At least.

Since creating the diamonds takes an additional piece for many of the blocks, there will be many more than that, depending on whether I want diamonds only in the middle bit or also on disappearing on the let's give a conservative 730 pieces. yowza. And since I want very few duplicates (other than the 'base' pieces), that's a whole lotta cutting and sewing.

My hope is that it'll be a "bed time" quilt, where we can wander the paths and make up stories about the characters we meet on the pieces of the blocks.

Corny? A bit. Totally me? Absolutely.


Friday, January 1, 2010

So Long 2009....Hellloooooo 2010!

I can remember a time when New Year's Eve meant all the "usual" things: parties, drinking, kissing at midnight....

This year, not so much! It's been a long few weeks, and I'm still recovering from having the flu (right before Christmas! I lost so many shopping days. grrrrr. Not that I'm still bitter.)

Which means that last night (NYE) while getting Leith to sleep, I also fell asleep. My sweet husband tried to tempt me with Christmas cake and Champagne, but I was having none of it. Couldn't be bothered to get up. He also came in at midnight to give me a kiss, and says that we had a little chat, but I don't remember it at. all. Poor honey. He deserves so much better than that!

Honestly, the past six months have been a little trying. Cooper was born prematurely. In and out of hospital for *weeks* -- poor guy. He's doing so well now, though. Then GiGi died. Not really unexpectedly, but still very sad. December was all about stomach bugs, snow days and flu. Suddenly, it's the new year.

Lots of possibility for good things this coming year. We're planning a vacation in Scotland (with visits to Wales and Ireland!). I've gotten several requests for more aprons/sewing. Leith continues to amaze us every day. That girl is smart as a whip and too clever by far. She'll be four in a few weeks and I am constantly wondering where has the time gone? Where's my *baby*? lol

Here's hoping that 2010 is a good year for all of us.