Friday, April 24, 2009

10 Things

Welcome to another episode of 10 things that made me happy this week!

1. Laptops - Come heck or high water, I'm getting a laptop tomorrow! Jeff already got the wireless modem up and running, now I just need to pick out my laptop. I can't wait to blog from bed!

2. Spring - Spring is finally here! It's supposed to be in the 80's this weekend. I hope we have a nice long Spring. I love days in the 70's and low 80's. above 85 is for the birds!

3. New Pajamas - I bought a new pair of summer jammies last weekend. They are washed and ready to wear.
4. Antique Stores - I took a bit of a long lunch today and drove to an antique store I pass every day on the way to work. I spent 30 minutes wandering through it. I could have spent TONS of money, but walked away empty. Sometimes, it's nice to just browse!
5. Decluttering - Jeff and I are still on a decluttering kick. We donated a truckload of stuff to the thrift shop 2 weeks ago and I want to donate more this weekend.
6. Super Secret Folding Methods - Okay, you have to be kind of an OCD geek like me, and it's not really a super secret since I found it posted on a blog for everyone to see (I found it on the Happy Zombie's blog and she learned it from her friend Karen who learned it from Lois Hallock), but finding a way to fold my fabric so that every piece no matter how big or small is the same width has changed me life. I've already spent hours refolding some material and I have tons more to go. Now that I know how to do it, I can't wait to display all my fabric!

7. Paint - I love slapping a coat of paint on something and making it look brand new. (See my last post if you don't believe me!)

8. Old Cats - My oldest cat will be 17 in June. What would I do without him? He's cantankerous, rude and snotty, but he's also a huge love bug and would spend 24 hours a day on my lap purring if I sat still long enough! (Not a great pic, but the only one available to me right now because I don't feel like digging out my disc of pet photos!)
9. Pregnant Nieces - My oldest niece is pregnant with her first child. We went to her baby shower last weekend and she is just so dang adorable! I can't wait to babysit!

10. Family on Facebook - I don't get to see my nieces as much as I'd like to. At the baby shower, I found out they are all on Facebook and have now friended them. I can keep up with them now. Yay! (I should mention that they all think it's hilarious that I have a facebook page and they all think that I'm too old to have one. What happened to being the cool aunt? I guess they grew up. *sigh*)

I hope to post pics of a new thrift store find I plan to paint this weekend and pics of my new laptop this weekend. Oh yeah, and if I get more fabric folded and arranged, I'll take pics of that too!


Sunday, April 19, 2009

Color Your World

Anyone who knows me knows I'm a linear, rule follower. I like lists and routine. I have been diagnosed with a touch of OCD. But sometimes, I want to step outside of my comfort zone and try to break my self-imposed rules. When I first set up my studio, I picked a color scheme. That scheme was red, white and black. That was 5 years ago. Over the years I have wanted to add more color, but those darn rules kept bogging me down. This weekend, inspired by my sister's use of many colors in her craft room I was determined to add some diffent colors in mine. After a quick stop at Walmart, I was ready.

A few weeks ago, I posted a picture of a metal thingy (the technical term) that I rescued from a thrift store. When I purchased it, it was white and rusted. After a coat of paint, it was off white. No big leap in imagination there, huh? Today I took a leap. It's now RED. Not just red, but RED.

Next, I painted a small wire birdcage that I found at the thrift store yesterday. I forgot to take a picture of it before, but it was kind of gold, antiquey metal looking. I like it much better in this aqua color:

The color in person is more aqua. This makes it look baby blue.

Lastly I attacked a shelf that Jean had given me last weekend. It was white-ish. It cried out for pink. The color I chose is called Watermelon and I love it! I've already hung it on the wall of my studio and I keep glancing over at it and smiling. (I tried to take a picture down there, but they were all blurry, so I used these from the good ol' kitchen counter.)

I tried to get some sewing done today, but wasn't really in the mood. I think I'll read for awhile and then work on an embroidered towel I've been itching to make.

Hope my splashes of color have made you smile!


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Sunday, April 12, 2009

Up All Night

So here it is just after 4am and I'm still up. Apparently, taking a 1 hour nap on the couch means I'll be up all night crafting. Especially when that 1 hour nap turns into a 3 hour nap, but whatever!

Yesterday, I had the day off of work for Good Friday. My work offers a floating holiday twice a year. You can take the day off or save your day to be used at another time during the year. I have never been good at delayed gratification, so I took the day. Anyway, I spent the day with my sister, Jean, and we had such a wonderful day! What's not to love about grilled cheese sandwiches made with Ciabatta Bread, homemade Jewish Apple Cake (only my 2nd time making it and it turned out a little dry, but still edible), a quick thrift store jaunt and a day of sewing and giggling with my sister?

When Jean and I get together to craft, we try to challenge each other to do new things. This time it was Jean's turn and she taught me so much! But I'm getting ahead of myself.

I wanted to share the very cool shelf I picked up at the thrift shop. As soon as I saw this, I knew I had to have it. I looked at the price tag and saw it was $25. A bit steeper than I wanted to pay, but I really, really wanted it. So I put it in my cart and went off to find Jean and show her my find. I showed it to her and then showed her the price. She immediately pointed out that the tag looked like it was from whatever store/yard sale the shelf was originally sold at. The thrift store prices are written differently so we searched for that price and found it. Turns out, it was only 9.99! Sold!

So here it is:

It's not as big as the picture makes it look. The tag on it said it is a shot glass holder. I bought it to display my pincushion collection and other little crafted goodies. I think it needs paint though. Jean suggested surprise, since she always suggests pink! I don't know yet. I hate to do white, since I always paint things white, but pink may be too, well, pink for me. I love pink, but not in shelving I don't think.

Anyway, one of our favorite parts of any thrift shop is the linens. Before I was into "thrifting" I always wondered who would buy sheets or pillowcases from a thrift shop. It kind of ooged me out to even consider sleeping on someone elses linens. Then Jean opened my eyes to upcycling linens. No need to sleep on them when you can upcycle them to make something. I've seen a few examples of using pieces of vintage sheets in quilts and I love them. One of my favorites is on Crazy Mom Quilts. Love her blog! Lots of great info there, I really want to make an inspiration board like hers too!

So our thrifting goal yesterday was to find vintage pillowcases. We picked out a few and then once we were home, we started on our Project of the Day. I have been wanting to make an apron and have been too afraid to try. Jean, who is not afraid of a darn thing that I can tell, decided that's what our project would be. Using a vintage pillow case and adding a pocket and some rickrack this is what I eventually ended up with:

I have to say, I'm pretty proud of the results. For my first attempt, it didn't turn out too bad at all! Jean taught me the super secret way to add a pocket (amazingly easy!) and how to add rickrack. As much rickrack as my mom added to my clothing when I was a child (and it was A LOT) I never knew how to attach it. Sounds silly now that I know, but I had no idea.

I love using the vintage pillow case with more modern fabric and the way the two complement each other. I cannot wait to make another apron now! If you want to see some very cute aprons that Jean has made, check out her Flickr photostream: Quilted Cupcake. Plan to spend a few minutes, because she has tons of other cuteness on her photostream!

The last thing I want to share before I collapse into bed is another thing from Jean. We celebrated her birthday Friday, hence the Jewish Apple Cake, and she gave me a gift. She made this quirky little bird and didn't dig it, so she gave it to me. I adore it. I just can't help but smile when I look at his silly little face. He will hold a place of honor on my new shelf!

That's it for now. I'm getting my sleepy self and my sleepy dog off to bed. Hopefully I'll have time tomorrow to post again!



Saturday, April 4, 2009


Today Jeff and I spent the entire day doing some Spring cleaning. Okay, okay, those that know me know that Jeff did 90% of the cleaning and I did a thing or two. Regardless, I spent zero time in my studio so I couldn't finish the pincushions I was planning for my weekend post.

I did steal some time to photograph some of the bibs I have made recently so I thought I'd share those today.

First is a plain bib made out of some pretty pink fabric that I found. I love circles and like how this turned out:

Another bib with circles, but this one has a black background is much brighter:

Next is my cupcake bib. Bright blue fabric with a hand embroidered cupcake makes this bib one of my favorites:

Last is another pink bib, this one with a machine embrodered birdie. I think the birdie is a bit too bright for the muted fabric, but he's still a cutie! The feet and eye are hand done:

That's it for now. I've made others, but haven't had time to photograph them yet.

Hopefully I'll be able to play in my studio tomorrow after taking some time to rearrange. I've been reorganizing and rearranging my studio in my head all week and hope to change it some to make it easier to work in. We'll see.

That's it for now!



Wednesday, April 1, 2009

A Quickie

No time for a long post today, but I feel bad that I didn't get to post any crafty goodness last weekend. Here is a peek of what I will be posting about next time....Pincushions! I am a pincushion addict and I'm always looking for new patterns and searching the thrift shops for things to turn into pincushions.

This pincushion is one I made from a teacup rescued from my local thrift shop.

More this weekend!