Thursday, May 20, 2010

Fabric storage inspiration? Not quite.

I spent all day waiting for fabric storage inspiration to hit, all the while sorting and folding and stacking. I knew I had a lot of fabric, but I was still surprised to see how much was there. The pile of wool garments ready for felting was the largest, thanks to my mother cleaning out all of her business clothes when she retired this year.

In the end, fabric storage inspiration didn't exactly hit me in the face like I was hoping. Instead, it kind of tapped gently and gingerly on my shoulder saying in a timid little voice, "Ummm... I think maybe if you put these pieces in a box together, ummm... it might be a little bit better than it was. That is, if it's not too much trouble for you, cause, umm.... I might be wrong about this."

So rather than a photo of some eye candy stack of fabric all neatly folded and organized, I'll give you a quick description. Same fabrics, but sorted and in stacked plastic tubs rather than spilled out all over the floor. Not earthshattering, but it gets my studio back to being functional again. (I'm still not finished; plan on being there by this time tomorrow night.)


On a totally unrelated note, I just had to share some of Liv's homework. The teacher asks them to write a "story" on the back of their worksheets - basically just three sentences all about one theme. Usually it goes something like, "I like cats. Cats are the best. Yay for cats!" Every now and then she gets creative and we get some real winners.

Like these....

"My mom has a mine (mini) van. I rid to scool in it. I love mine vans!" I love her illustration of the mini-van. She's got the pointed nose shape DOWN. What you can't see in the scan is that there's a body all slammed up against the pointy windshield. That's me. And the picture of her in the side has her wearing a seatbelt. Safety first.

For this assignment she had to write three sentences using her spelling words, which included "you", "not", "sit", and "do". So of course she strung them all together and wrote, "Do you not wat (want) to sit and do your homwrk? No I dot (don't). I do not like homwrk."

And finally, a set of sentences about her daddy.

"My dad plas goof (plays golf). he uoosis (uses) a cluB. he pas (plays) Good."


Wednesday, May 19, 2010


So today I got the big idea to clean out my sewing studio. I am NOT one of those people with the dreamy sewing room, with decorator colors on the wall and inspirational art pieces scattered on shelves throughout the room. My studio is purely a place to put things until I want to work with them. Except that sometimes I get so much stuff stacked around that I can no longer walk into the room.

I'm at the point right now.

Those boxes in the floor are all vintage fabrics. I had been "storing" them in my van, but since we went on vacation and had to use our minivan for its intended purpose, rather than just a storage room on wheels, they ended up in the floor of my studio. I'm waiting for storage inspiration to strike.

What you can't see in this photo is that there's an area of the room that is literally knee-deep in knit yardage and garments for refashioning. I spent the morning hauling it all out, sorting it, and folding it on my dining room table. I no longer have a working dining room table. I'm waiting for storage inspiration to strike for this as well.

Now that I'm all depressed about my fabric hoarding and lack of storage, perhaps I should show you some progress that's happening in our house. Remember my ugly fireplace? It started out as this:

and then my sweet husband added sheetrock above the fireplace (actually, it was fireboard because it's a working fireplace) to cut the ugly brick fireplace off at its knees. He also built a new mantel that's considerably deeper than the ridiculously shallow one that was there before. After mudding and sanding and mudding and staining, it now looks like this:

I'm totally digging the dark stain on the mantel. We'd be all done except for the decorating (see my pretty new bottle on the mantel?) except that Home Depot did a piss poor job matching the paint and now we have to repaint the rest of the room. I'm not going to think about that right now. Instead, I'll start obsessing over what to put above my new mantel.


Thursday, May 13, 2010

It went... swimmingly

So I've been absent for a while. During my little blog absence we've gone on a family vacation (will post pics tomorrow), I've finished up the semester at school (YAY summer!!), and Liv has finished up her first soccer season. All in all, a crazy busy time.

In betwixt and between I was able to get a bit of sewing done. Nothing major - some t-shirt dresses and such for Liv. But the BIG thing I tackled was actually something not so big after all.

Ever since I saw Dana's Coast to Coast Swimwear Sew-Along last year, I've been dying to try my hand at making a swimsuit for Liv. Over the past 10 months I've been reading, gathering supplies, and generally getting my nerve up. Given that a basic girls' swimsuit doesn't require much in the way of supplies, and there's actually not super a whole lot of practical nuts & bolts info out there on sewing swimwear, the bulk of that time was spent in avoidance. Thinking, planning, plotting, but not actually DOING.

But this week, I tackled it.

And it went.... swimmingly.

The edges all have contrast binding with cotton-wrapped elastic on the inside for stability. I'm not so happy with the top where all the binding comes together with the straps. With all of that elastic sandwiched, I couldn't get anything to lay down smoothly.

I couldn't find any information about how to transition from binding the edge to wrapping the binding around the elastic. I couldn't get a smooth finish where the edge binding met up with the straps, so I finally just stitched it all down ugly covered the top with a strip of black that I pulled really taut. A band-aid fix, literally.

I tried it on Liv tonight and it fits to a tee! I'm so giddy from my bathing suit success that it's taking every ounce of self-control to keep me from spending down my entire bank account on spandex for future bathing suits.