Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Final Post Totes Tealdeer

Ohhhgeeez I don't even know what to say here. I'm going to try not to be really dramatic and pretend that this thing is more than what it really is. It's just a blog, just photos of my kid and projects I've actually finished for once. But to me, it's.... [cheesy cliche forthcoming] .... it's so much more. *cringe*
Seriously, this blog is so much fun for me! I loved designing it, and playing around with all the graphic elements and learning a tiny bit of html. I loved connecting with people who left me comments, getting inspired by their blogs, and let's face it- I like to talk about me. I started the blog a couple years ago to help promote my etsy shop. This whole online business was going to supplement my husband's income so that I could stay home with our daughter and further cement our plans of homeschooling her and devoting more time to the Bible ministry. Well, that hasn't really worked out. In fact it's kind of a disaster! I'm trying really hard to laugh but.... Not gonna lie, I'm crying like a baby. So pathetic. 
Anyway, you could say I could keep the blog and just post occasionally, whenever I found the time. But I'm definitely an all-or-nothing kind of person. I mean, I know everyone says that, but seriously you guys. It's ridiculous. I have no self control and I spend a disgusting amount of time in agony over getting up interesting posts with good photos and spamming it to the far corners of the interwebs, and then more time worrying how lame my posts are and if people are pointing and laughing. If I can't be internet famous, I don't want to do it at all. *pout*
Kidding. Mostly. But really, I just get really stressed out when I can't find the time to make this thing as perfect as it is in my imagination. I have eleventyhundred post ideas, and a camera card full of accompanying photos. I have tutorials lined up, and collaborations with other bloggers ready to go. I write posts in my head all day long, and then get raging mad when they never actually make it to reality. If I keep the blog and tell myself I'll just post whenever I feel like it, well, nothing will change. My daily planner will still be crammed full of "online business" plans and tasks, with no room for the important things in life. 

I'm going to keep the shop, I'm just dropping the social network marketing.* I honestly don't think of this blog as a marketing tool, more of a personal playground. My own little space to display whatever I find interesting, amusing, and inspiring. I'm really sad about losing this, but the point is to gain back the important things that have gotten pushed aside in my quest for internet domination ;)

If you have plans for spending money in my shop, please do so with all confidence that I won't be packing it in anytime soon- I have an entire roomful of gorgeous wool and vintage buttons that make me sweat with excitement over ideas! I'm curious to see if the shift in attention from the blog to reality will fuel my creative energy even more, allowing my shop to grow without the social networking marketing help.

Thanks for everyone who has followed my blog, shared my posts, and commented with your own thoughts. And for reading this overly dramatic explanation.   


*This does not, however, mean that I'm going to stop reading all of your fabulous blogs! In fact just today I discovered what google reader actually does. I know, I'm like ninety or something. Shut it. I'm going to stop making my own posts, not become a smelly recluse. So expect to continue to see my scowling avatar in your post comments, probably even more in fact, since I no longer have my own personal platform from which to spew my opinions.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Everyone, I apologize in advance for what I am about to do. I just thought I should let you know what I'm going to be doing this weekend, and what I'll be recovering from for the next several weeks. 
Doug and I are going with a group of friends to a cabin in Hocking Hills, Ohio. We've been a few times, and it's really pretty. There's beautiful scenery, quiet and seclusion, and a hot tub. I'm mostly interested in this though:

Not that we'll be bringing all of that of course. There's only nine of us. Not that I doubt our ability to consume all of that in one weekend, but we have to drive home. Let's be reasonable. Plus I'm already making my Nutella Cheesecake so. Yeah. My friend Talaya is in charge of the rest of the dessert selections, and she's having a really hard time deciding. I thought I'd post these favorites and make it a little "easier" on her. Mwahhahahahaahahaaa

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Cowgirl Fashion Show

Remember the Simplicity-except-not pattern I couldn't figure out last week? Because I'm a moron? Well I finally finished it!

This turned out to be the perfect pattern for me because it forced me to do all the things I've always gone through ridiculously dramatic efforts to avoid in the past:
  • Zippers. I can't believe I was so afraid of using zippers! Well there is the thing about my sewing machine not having a zipper foot which makes it a little tedious, but it wasn't nearly as bad as I was imagining!
  • Facings. Up until now I never understood the concept. Silly, right?
  • Bias tape. You guys, not only did I use bias tape, I made my own!! 

Now, the dress did turn out a bit roomy, but that's ok because she can wear a turtleneck underneath it when it gets really cold, and she should still be able to wear it next year too. She doesn't really like it because it doesn't twirl, but too bad. I made this and darnit you will wear it and LIKE IT!!!

I have enough corduroy leftover to make two wee little ties for my baby nephews. Maybe a bow tie and a tie tie? Omigosh and little caps?! Do you think this print is too girly for boys?

The pattern came with instructions for long sleeves too, so I'll definitely be using it again. I could even shorten the length by about half and have a cute top to wear with jeans!
I've heard many people remark that they wish they could learn to sew but feel like they could never figure  out patterns. I hope the past two sewing posts have showed that if I could figure this out, you guys definitely can! I have the perfect pattern in mind for a beginner, I promise no bias tape! Would you guys be interested in a sew-along?
If so, how do you feel about a dress for little girls, from infants to size six? Or would you prefer something non-clothing to start out, like something for home? Or do you hate hearing about sewing and wish I would stop posting about it? 

Monday, October 10, 2011

Two-Minute Tea Towel Pillows

I picked up this adorable folk art tea towel at an antique shop a few weeks ago, and I thought it would be really cute in my living room. I just sewed up two sides, inserted a pillow form (50% off at Joanns!) and stitched the bottom closed. Literally under two minute project.
The blue and red towel was found at a flea market. I can't wait to find more and completely cover my sofa with pillows!

Friday, October 7, 2011

Favorites Friday

I really didn't start out with a geometric theme in mind, but that's just how it went. And then I'm like hmm I think I like geometric things and I never even realized it?

 I love eeeeverything in that shop! The prints and calendars would go perfectly in my living room.


Have you been sucked into the geomtric trend too?

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Sewing Saturday

What is the most rational use of a weekend when you have custom orders stacking up and about a zillion other things to do? Try to make three dresses and two nightgowns in one day, of course.

Carly was a great little helper!

I really hate having more than one project going at a time. Usually this is a good thing because it means I don't really need to hoard fabric and yarn. Mostly. Maybe a little. But when there are so many projects that are all the same priority (STATUS RIGHT NOW) it gets frustrating. So I guess I'm a project hoarder.

Carly really needs dresses for cool weather. It's so hard to find anything at the stores that aren't made of tulle and covered in sequins, glitter, or saucy phrases emblazoned across the butt. And really, does a four-year-old need sexy ruching on her hips and neckline? Still, anything remotely practical is going to be short-sleeved, like holiday party dresses. Why do all little girls winter dresses have short sleeves?? This has never made sense to me. So we're usually stuck with corduroy jumpers over turtlenecks, which is ok I guess, but we're having a hard time finding even those this year.
I happened to have a  pattern from a garage sale that would do, so I got a few yards of corduroy and spent the first three hours of Saturday morning cutting all my pieces. The pattern was simple, the style was perfect, and the selection of corduroy at Joann's was [miraculously] satisfactory. 

Unfortunately, the smallest size of my pattern was a six, which would be alright on my amazon child in retail clothes, but in the sewing pattern world basically means a plus size. Still, I thought if I made extra-deep seam allowances I would be ok. 
Erm no.

Look at her go. She's such a little model.

Of course Carly loves it because it drags the ground. Oh well, I guess we'll have a dress ready to go when she hits age 12, right?
There's another one of these patterns on etsy, so I'll probably grab that if my Joanns doesn't have any. It's out of print, so probably not. :/

At least the nightgowns turned out ok, even if they are a little big. Hopefully they'll last a few years!

I let her pick out the fabric. The other nightgown has princess castles all over it.
These were really fun and easy to make, I'd like to do some more!
 Ohhh wait we need matching nightgowns! Eeek!

Now here comes the sad part of the day. I swear I worked as quickly as I could, stopping only for a few minutes to grab a bite to eat, but I still had time for only one more dress.

Yeah, that brownie is almost TWO INCHES tall.

Anyway this last dress really has me boiling. It looks sooo simple, but I'm stuck.

Simplicity. I hate you. Even your brand name mocks me.
 So here's the deal. There's this yoke piece. (You can see it best on the drawn example in the middle.) And it somehow goes on the front of the dress after you make the pleats. I say somehow because it's truly a mystery as to how it's supposed to get there.
Here's what I mean:

Now here it clearly states that any helpful drawings will be shaded for right sides and blank for wrong sides, does it not?
It does. Ok good I'm not going crazy.

Now here are the written instructions: (The dress fetus met its demise at step number four.)

So basically from what we read here, we're going to sew the yoke against the front so that the wrong side of the yoke will be showing when we look at the front of the dress, are we not? Because it says right there in capital letters, "RIGHT sides together."

But here's the illustration:


Both of those pieces are blank, as in NOT patterned, as in RIGHT sides. How can that be? I swear I sat there and stared at this for like an hour. Then I checked all my pattern pieces and all my markings and even the entire rest of the pattern instructions. I just don't get it. 

OH my gosh. You guys I am SO stupid!
As soon as I hit the publish button on this post and re-read what I wrote, the answer hit me!
I'm supposed to pinch up the seams on the front to meet the edges of the yoke
I feel SO DUMB right now!
Although in my defense, it was really hard to see in the tiny illustration and then as I examined my photo I could see what I missed. But still, I'm a moron. And probably shouldn't be trusted with needles and scissors.