Friday, September 11, 2015

Shopping to Shop

We're all guilty.  This is why quilter's have stash.  The Holiday weekend found a 25% off sale at one of the local quilt shops.  This was a VERY smart move on their part because the other LQS chose to close for the holiday weekend to have a retreat with their staff .  I can't begin to tell you how many regular customers from the closed shop I saw shopping the sale in the open shop.  Anyway, they sucked me in.  I just love it when the quilt shop groups a line of fabric together and features it at the end of an aisle.  That's where I found those fabrics above.  While it was the vari-colored dots that sucked me in, I had to add three prints to them.  Don't know what I'm going to do with it...a little too whimsical for a table runner, but it would make a cute kid's quilt. This is a line I'm not too familiar with--even the bolts themselves had a unique shape--Cute Critters, Debbie Mumm, Wilmington Prints.

After that I moved on to the Christmas fabrics.  I have convinced myself that I need a Christmas-y throw. (yeah, yeah, yeah, I know, I need to finish 'Jingle'), but I've had my eye on that Moda fabric on the right  (Tole Christmas by Gina Martin--and it's made in Japan, it has a nice hand to it) my last couple of visits to the shop, so I came home with a yard of each of these prints (which, believe me, was an exercise in control, as they had at least 5 more prints in this line on the floor).

Come Sunday, as I'm sitting there admiring these 4 prints I decided that I needed to go back to the shop and buy more fabric at 25% off.  And the justification would be that I needed some Bella Solids to go with these prints.

So four more yards came home...and my color selection was a tad unconventional...salmon and olive as opposed to red and green. I must have had some kind of influence....I think you'll the next photo will clear that up.

I also came into the shop with a some fabrics from my stash that needed matching. I picked up those two top prints from a 'discontinued fabric' basket at a recent show in a wool vendor's booth. Half yard of one, yard and a half of the other.  Table runner fodder.  But it needed something to go with it, so I found something.

Hmm.... I think my decorating this holiday is going to be salmon and sage-centric.  Oh my!

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Fun With Fabric -- It's Not Always All About Sewing


Labor Day weekend... Market Days at the repurpose/shabby chic barns...check.  Big fabric sale at the LQS...check. Hubs spending the day at a Fantasy Football draft and now I'm bored, what can I do?  Well, I can unload my scrap strip drawers and pull out all the Halloween strips, and then neatly fold all the other strips back into said drawers..that'll take an hour and a half...check.  And then I can raid the craft room and look for leftover styrofoam trees from Christmas crafts past...check. Queue up a few episodes of UK Celebrity Big Brother on YouTube and get to work.

 Sew those random width strips together.

Fold them in half and give them a slight twist as they are twisted around the styrofoam cone.

Find some wooden 'doll head' beads, paint them black, and then come up with a creative way to rig them to attach to the cones (bent flower head pins hot glued on the bottom and up the side).

Wah-lah.  Halloween trees (sitting on pillar candle holders). 

I used 14" cones for the trees, because that's what I had in the workroom, but you could certainly make these a lot faster on a smaller scale (or use 3 different sizes).  I'll likely pick up some more appropriate bases and put two in my Etsy shop. I definitely don't need three of these in my decor--which I think is going to be more on the 'dark side' this year.

Happy Thursday...and hang in there, it's almost the weekend!

Friday, September 4, 2015

It's a Long Weekend, and I Hope You Have Far Better Plans Than I

And I'm feeling good about the fact that I'm going into it having finished up another project from my little PostIt note board.  

These three elephant pincushions finally got finished and listed for sale in my Etsy shop.

I even finished an elephant pincushion to add to my own collection.  I always like to make one to keep when I'm making something new.

So now I'm ready to move on to another project.. most likely some more pincushions for the shop.  Maybe something simpler that I can put together in an afternoon.  I have something in mind.

In the meantime, I'm halfway through a wool applique pin cushion for my personal collection--a Christmas themed -- it won't have a long use-life before it's relegated to a shelf until the holiday rolls around again, but I'm a sucker for wool applique and Christmas, so it'll do..

Today I get off my 'real' job three hours early.  We always have a three hour early dismissal on a major holiday eve, it's one of the nice perks of my job.  And I'll be using this 3 hours to do the work for my second job that I've been putting off all week (merchandising).

No family plans for the last long weekend of the Summer.  In fact the hubs is spending one day at a fantasy football draft and another golfing, so that leaves me home alone to clean the house and sew. Woo hoo.  Well....actually, I'll be going to the shabby chic/repurposing vendors on Saturday morning just to look around and see what's trending in home decor while the hubs cleans one of the bathrooms and mows the lawn. Maybe I can convince him that we need to go out for some hard-shell all-you-can-eat crabs and a pitcher of beer Saturday night. That would definitely be way preferable to making pincushions or sewing rows together.  Yep, now that sounds like a plan.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

We Aren't in Kansas Anymore, Are We Toto?

That's right Dorothy, sadly we are in the office today. (and yes, those are snowmen that never got taken down last winter--I'm only here one day a week, not one of my priorities).

You've seen my studio, so since I'm here let me show you around my office. I work in the attic of a 100-year-old house that was converted to a few tiny offices with gabled ceilings and cool old wooden doors with interesting doorknobs. 

Even though I'm only here one day a week I do keep some toys around to make me feel at home. 

If I had room on my studio walls, this bad boy would go home with me where it might actually get used. 

Nothing special. Nothing remotely quilty either. But I'm only here on Wednesdays. I think my office mate is glad to have the place to himself the rest of the week. 

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Summer's Almost Gone (Wasn't that a lyric in a Doors song?)

As much as I love the Fall, it just sucks that it's September...the precursor to what the Farmer's Almanac is predicting is going to be one Hellacious winter.  It's times like these I wish I were a Snowbird with a nice shuttered condo on a Florida Atlantic Beach that I could retreat to at the first sign of Frost.  But, clearly that will never happen in this lifetime, so we make do.

I just discovered that the UK Celebrity Big Brother...which is NOT AT ALL ANYTHING LIKE the US Big Brother (which, trust me, is a GOOD thing) fired up this weekend on YouTube, so every night I retire to my studio, and tune in to the day's episode (yes, it airs daily, people). I find this show extremely entertaining. Yes there's a bit of nudity here and there, and a lot of cursing (as if that would be a shocker to me), but it's really refreshing to watch the British celebs who simply refuse to take any shit from their American counterparts.  There's no backstabbing...they are simply in your face and will not hesitate to call you out on any nonsense you think you can get away with. Straight guy shares a bed with a gay guy and it's a raucous slumber party--unlike how that might go over in America.  Anyway, I digress (but seriously, if you watch Big Brother in the US, check it episode 2, 3 or 4 to get a taste of what this show is about--and how the US totally bastardized the concept they stole).

So, since I'm invested in this drivel (as the hubs would call it), I can't be distracting myself cutting fabric, or impede my hearing because I'm running the machine, so I've pulled out the hand stitching projects I've put together for my future road trips.
I HATE French knots.  Three times around the needle or four?  And Heaven forbid you stick your needle back into the thread, you'll never yank it through.

Ooops....good that I finished a project...bad that now I have to find something else to take with me on the 3 hour drive to visit our old neighbor with the Happy Hour Ladies. 

And yes....track 5, Waiting for the Sun (when I was in 7th grade my fantasy was to marry Jim Morrison--sorry, I was just not going to be a Davy Jones kind of girl.  Even at 13 my taste in men was bad boy' :) )

"Summer's almost gone
Summer's almost gone
Almost gone
Yeah, it's almost gone
Where will we be
When the summer's gone?
Morning found us calmly unaware
Noon burn gold into our hair
At night we swim the laughin' sea
When summer's gone
Where will we be?
Summer's almost gone
Summer's almost gone
We had some good times
But they're gone
The winter's comin' on
Summer's almost gone"