Monday, August 31, 2009

She Likes Me

I had a smile on my face today because I had my first-ever comment on my blog! To celebrate, I stitched up these potholders as a thank you gift to the wonderful gal. Enjoy, Deb!
PS- The patchwork pattern is from what I remember seeing in a library copy of Lotta Jansdotter's Simple Sewing. I'm going off of memory, mind you, so any wonky inaccuracy is all mine!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Book Bag Done - Check!

I finished up my daughter's book bag today. The pear applique is also a pocket- the right size to throw a couple pencils in. I put a large zipper pocket on the back side, but I left the inside pocket-less and chose to add a separate zippered pouch instead. I figured when the bag is full of books, it'd be hard to get to inside pockets, but the pouch could be yanked out and carried to class (she leaves the bag in her locker).

Note to self- don't try to iron fusible fleece to corduroy. It makes a bubbly wrinkled mess. Not attractive. Heavy, craft-type interfacing works fine.

I also finished putting all my garage sale booty through the wash. I stopped counting how many loads it was...

Friday, August 28, 2009

Garage Sale Booty

It's Friday, my husband is out of town backpacking, so I goofed off today. I only went to one garage sale, though. Twice. Yea, I came home with an armload of textiles, went down to my sewing studio (everyone else in the family calls it a laundry room) and as I started working, I kept thinking of the booty I had left behind in that man's driveway.

SOOOOOO, off I went to retrieve more of the treasure. Boy, was he happy to see me coming! In the end, I relieved him of a huge bolt of unbleached muslin, a laundry basket full of vintage calicos, antique and vintage hankies and scarves, including a silk Vera scarf with a hand rolled hem (score!!), wool sweaters that are already in the washer felting, hand embroidered linen tablecloths and napkins, men's dress shirts to recon, and this really cool 70's piece of fabric designed by a guy named Max Rawicz. I googled him and found out he designed bedspreads in the 70's. I love the big flowers. Didn't get any work done, but what a sweet day!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Bookin' It

In between putting the hours into some of my other jobs, I'm working on a book bag for H. Her old one has seen better days. The zipper is broken and seams are ripping. The other day H. weighed her bag of books that she drug home from school. It weighed 28 pounds, so no wonder her current bag is tired! She chose some scrap fabrics, and I've been trying to narrow down the design. I want it very practical, of course, but a little bit fun too. Don't you think everything should be that way? So far I only have the pear applique done. More photos as I have more time...

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Organize, Move On...

So, I decided to solve my organization problem with the " what-do-I-have-on-hand-that-will-work?" solution. I simply categorized the items into pocket folders. Simple. Done. It may not be worthy of a magazine spread, but it's hidden in a drawer, and frees me up to work on more exciting stuff. Like the book bag I'm currently designing for my teenage daughter. Show and tell soon.

Friday, August 21, 2009

The Good, the Bad, and the Messy

The Good: I'm finally getting around to cleaning this up.
The Bad: It's taken years to get around to it.
The Messy: All my zippers, elastics, buttons, and misc. trims all dumped together in one drawer.
The organizational solution: I'm not sure yet, I'm still thinking about what the best containers would be to fit all this stuff neatly, yet keep it all in the drawer. Buy 'em, make 'em, or sew 'em?

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Aloha and Welcome Back (to me)

Oh, my goodness! I really must get the hang of this blog thing. Anyhoo, we just returned from a vacation to Hawaii. A big deal vacation for us! Lovely, soothing, nothing to think about except what beach to go to. Ahhh...

But, of course, I couldn't just go there without cranking out a few accessories to making traveling easier. Here's the scoop:

Now that you have to pay extra to check baggage, I (aka cheapskate) only use carry-on. The last time I was on an airplane, I actually took a tape measure with me and measured the space under the seats. I wanted to see just how big of a bag I could wedge under there. Turns out it's a pretty good sized cubby! I know that different airplanes will have varying space, so I made this a few inches smaller than my measurements, just to be on the safe side. It's 16" X 14" X 7".

It's made with a combination of green duck canvas, blue Kona cotton, and a remnant of Amy Butler fabric I had in my stash. I had a lot of fun designing it as I stitched. There's outside pockets all the way around withvelcro tab or magnet closures ( I was experimenting), plus a zipper pocket for extra security. In the back there are straps to hold the bag to the handle of my rolling suitcase, and D-rings on the sides to attach a shoulder strap.

I sandwiched fusible fleece in between the outside fabric and the lining to give it shape, but I still wanted it soft enough to be squished under the seat any which way. There's inside pockets as well, of course. It worked out great on the planes. I'll try to give more details on it's construction in another post.

I also bought a new small camera for the trip. I've been an SLR girl since high school, but I wanted something small and more portable. Of course, it needed a little cozy to keep it safe.

Again, I made the pattern up as I went along, using scraps of linen, calico, felt and such. There's a little pocket inside for spare batteries and memory cards. I got comments from nice strangers when it was hanging around my neck.
BTW, the camera is a Canon G10, and I love it. I can shoot raw images with a small camera- very sweet!

Last, while we were in Hawaii, I went to a nearby WalMart to buy (yet more) sunscreen. On a whim, I asked an employee if they had a fabric department. Well, not only did they stock fabric, but they had two long aisles of hawaiian prints! I would have loved to grab some of every bolt, but in the end, I settled for three simple prints. I'm not sure what I'll make with them, but come on, who can resist a little of the tropics? (Canine model is Sophie, in a rare moment of dignified calm.)