Mar 31, 2014

Why Kraft Paper is Awesome

I finally dug in and bought a big roll of Kraft paper on Amazon. When it came I did the happy dance inside.

This roll of paper is 4 ft by 200 ft. That is 800 square feet. It is huge and lovely and AMAZING.

Mar 24, 2014

Easter Egg Wreath

Easter is almost here! ALMOST HERE!! That also means it's past the time to get out your obnoxiously colored decorative flags. And grab those ducks, bunnies and chicks!

 Don't you know that the moment the holiday before it is over, you must immediately and quickly pack all the crap away and switch to the next holiday?


So, you know what that means, right? I haven't done a LICK of decorating for Easter yet. Not that Easter is a big holiday at my house in general but I like excuses to buy and make things, too!

Even though it's not a big holiday for us, we always seem to end up with an overabundance of plastic Easter Eggs. I'm pretty sure I don't buy them every year but somehow they are multiplying. They must be bunny eggs (shhh....don't ruin my delusion that bunnies don't come from eggs). And because the kids love them, I always end up with too many. In fact they plague our house for months afterwards because the kids have secretly squirrelled them away.

Mar 21, 2014

My little "Thing 1"

Last week was Dr. Seuss week at my daughter's school in honor of his birthday. On Friday they were allowed to dress up as a character from a Dr. Seuss book.

We talked it over and chose Thing 1 since it was a relatively easy to make using supplies I already owned.


Mar 17, 2014

Some Rough Sketches

I've been drawing a lot. I mean. TONS. I've had better ideas on a whim that I ever did in fashion school.
Oh, yeah. Did I ever mention I'm a fashion school drop-out?

I say it like I really dropped out but really that term is directly inspired by the "Beauty School Dropout" song in Grease. I just loved Frenchie for some reason...

Mar 15, 2014

Too many Unfinished Projects

You know what I envy sometimes? Organized people. Well, organized people and people that only do one craft. ONE CRAFT! I can just dream about how organized that is and how much they get accomplished by having a single craft.

And, no. Don't think I am knocking anyone who only does one craft fabulously and amazingly well. I just envy their stick-to-it-ness. I don't seem to share that.

While doing spring cleaning in my studio I came across far to many projects that are half done and I was actually amazed at how many different ones there were.  I totally have craft A.D.D. It's a serious affliction.

Let's do a small recap.

Mar 11, 2014

Make your own scrappy notebooks for FREE!

A few weeks ago I had an idea and wanted to sketch a women's shirt design. When I do sketches like this I use a flat pattern spec template and place it behind some copy paper to draw my design to scale. Sadly, all I had that day was my sketchpad and it's paper was too thick to use this method.

Instead of doing a "woe is me", I just decided to make a notebook using scrap paper in the office.
So I grabbed some scrap paper and got to work.

Sketching Away- This is your brain on thoughts

Yesterday I spent most of my awake life on the internet. I was pouring over blogs and indie pattern companies. Drowning in the vastness of the web.

I saw a great many patterns and lots of ideas started. I picked up my little homemade sketchbook that fits perfectly in my purse and got to work. Sketching and smudgy penciling away. (Is penciling a word?)

This is your brain on ideas. Lots and lots and lots of ideas.

I must have sketched over 15 different pieces of clothing today!! And I don't even know how many yesterday. I think my brain is getting fried. 

I'm guessing you can tell because of my amazing prowess at paint.

Mar 10, 2014

Spring Cleaning Time in the Studio!!

Lately I've felt like my studio space is a dungeon. It's in the basement, it has fluorescent lights and gray block walls. All and all, it's pretty depressing.

Oh! And don't forget the lovely electrical box mounted on some plywood in the corner.

Here we have the beautiful chandelier. 

Then there is the 'closet' that holds the well pump. My, my, my...  Doesn't that sound.... uh, lovely?

Add to it that I have so many things out and half done that it's a giant clusterfork (I think you know what I mean) and it's utter chaos. No wonder why I've been dragging all my yarn upstairs to work on my Circle Fun Granny Square blanket (you can get the pattern here).

Well, no more. I want a right and proper room. You hear me? I said right AND proper. So Sunday I took some personal time away from the kids bouncing off the walls and sorted.

And let me tell you, I have PLENTY of craft supplies that I had forgotten about. So if you see me walk near a craft supply store without an exact item for an exact project, please send me packing! My husband will thank you.

I sorted yarn, glue, markers, paint, thread, and elastic. Beads, needles,  pins, paper and stamps and scissors. Yes, Scissors!! I found scissors everywhere. I didn't even know I had this many. And don't you know, whenever I go looking for a pair, I can't find a -single- one.

But after all this sorting I was happy. So, so happy. Things are in their place, I have free drawers (to shove more crap in) in my storage bins. And I can see more of the floor!!

Phase One of Beautify the Studio is almost complete.

Mar 3, 2014

The Parisian Skirt

In my last post I said how I was distracted from my granny square blanket. This little baby is one of the reasons. Lucy is modeling it for me. I'll introduce you to my dress form Lucy later on.

I call it The Parisian Skirt. 

Why? I have no idea but somehow it reminds me of France.  Perhaps it's the colors or the print. It looks rich and fancy to me....No matter. I'm in love with it. Love that magenta in the print!! I am so proud, too.

The Parisian Skirt is a dirdl skirt with a wide elastic waist and side seam pockets. But just look at that fabric. It's AMAZING.

First I cut two pieces of cloth the length I wanted plus about an inch. I used the full width of the fabric so each panel was roughly 20 x 45 inches wide.  I serged the top and bottom edges to stop fraying while I was working (I didn't know how long this would sit half-done to be honest). I also cut a piece of 3 inch elastic the length of my waist minus about 2 inches.

Next I drafted and cut out my pockets. Four pieces, two for each side.  I LOVE skirts with pockets. Even wee baby ones like this since I apparently forgot to add seam allowance.

 Oops!! At least my change will never fall out. And I will never be a victim of pickpockets.

I pinned the pockets right sides together on each side seam of the skirt and stitched down to attach them. Then pressed the seam allowance towards the pocket and stitched around the pocket and down the side seams.

For extra "fancy" I edge stitched the pockets to make them darn near invisible. Would you look at that? Blink and you miss them. 

I joined the elastic by overlapping and using a stretch stitch on my sewing machine. Then I trimmed it down really close and used a fray stop to prevent unraveling.

The final steps were gathering the waist and basting it to the elastic. I used contrasting thread so I wouldn't go completely mad. Then using two rows of stitching I attached the skirt and then removed the basting stitches. I hemmed it with a double rolled 1/4. 

Doesn't Lucy look great? And she just happened to have a magenta sweater to wear with it. 

Wait a minute, how dare she raid my closet without asking. That tart!!

Mar 2, 2014

Crochet Blanket Progress and Other Distractions

I've made some progress on my Circle Fun Granny Square Blanket lately. If you would like to grab the pattern, you can do so here. It's not quite perfect but I'm working out the bugs.

So far I can cover a 2 x 2.5 foot area roughly. It's not as far as I had hoped but I got sidetracked.
 I made my Parisian Skirt, the Easiest Ever Jewelry Set, I am sketching out some new clothing pattern ideas,  and am reorganizing my studio. Reorganizing is hard work. What do you do with all that stuff?? I think if I get shelves to hold it all, there will be no room to work.

I did manage to get to the craft store this weekend and got to cross off a few things I needed for some projects. I picked up some ball point needles, white serger thread, and elastic thread. None of these items were from my Reading Makes me Want to Buy Things list, though.

Perhaps it's better that way. New items means new projects that I won't be able to do for a long while.