Monday, March 21, 2011

I have been at a loss of words lately. My heart feels so cluttered with meaningless worry and anxiety. This happens from time to time. It steals the joy I find in the everyday things I used to love, and that includes creating.

It took a few days, but I'm feeling a little better now. I spent my free time today going through my vintage fabric collection. I cut some of my fabric into fat quarters so it would be a bit more manageable, and then I set some aside to share :) I'd like to trade some and I'll probably add a few in my shop. I'm parting with the prints that I've used a lot and want to swap out for some other patterns, or with prints that I got a king sized sheet of and there's just simply too much fabric for one girl.

Is that a bad problem to have? :)

Thursday, March 10, 2011

pattern pattern pattern!

I've always been a terrible student. I cannot follow instructions. There is a disconnect from the words on a page to the signals in my brain to my fingertips. It just doesn't work. I accepted it years ago and I learn in my own unique ways. :)

I feel like I'm constantly pushing myself to learn new things and to improve my seamstress skills (note: creative, but still minimal). I've always wanted to have a little frilly unique dress and skirt collection for my shop and until recently I haven't wholeheartedly pursued it. Right now I'm heavily inspired by my daughter, by spring, by vintage whimsy. I whipped up 11 skirts last week and this week I decided I'd try my hand at a few dresses. Newborn dresses, that is! I searched high and low for some cute unique handmade dresses for Emma before she was born and didn't find any (well, not any that I could afford, I bet they were worth it but I'm not spending more than $30 on a dress for a baby!) I pulled out an old newborn dress, took some measurements, and went to sketching.

pattern making

It's nothing super fancy, trust me, but I still made it! I started off by sewing patterns I purchased, and then when I got comfortable with that I started ripping apart thrifted dresses to mimic the pattern, and this is my first try at pulling out a pencil, ruler and pattern paper. My first try at constructing it failed (I sewed it all wrong, armhole nightmare... I cut it in half with my pinking shears and cried for 20 minutes!) but tonight I got it right :)

I think I'm going to sew up 5 of these cute little newborn dresses and then my next attempt... enlarging my own pattern. eep! Why am I intimidated by the littlest of things? I'm completely self taught by trial and error. I'm sure it would be easier if I could follow instructions and read and have someone teach me. sigh!

Monday, March 7, 2011

vintage bug!

I have it bad. I've always been into vintage... embarrassing story alert: we watched The Brady Bunch when we were little and unlike my sister, I mostly loved it so I could see all of the mod dresses the Brady girls were wearing. I wanted them all. I begged my mom to make me clothes like them. She finally caved and made me a couple of floral 60s inspired numbers ;) I wore them to school all the time (and got picked on unmercifully for it, sigh!) anyways, ever since I was little I've been very fond of pretty things with vintage charm.

I've been scouring the thrift shops for vintage sheets (for my latest sewing projects, and a few to keep), vintage toys (for Emma), vintage storybooks (for all of us to enjoy), vintage dishes (for the dining room china cabinet), vintage clothes (for both Emma and I!)... you get the hint. I go out thrifting a few times a week. It gives us something to do. We sing songs in the car to and fro. I get to cuddle her as we walk the aisles. She likes flipping through the hangers. We read all the kids books in one of the shops. It's a lot of fun :)

Yesterday I pulled down the vintage little people barn that I found last fall at my favorite thrift shop. I think it was $10. It was really dusty & dirty and took a lot of scrubbing to get clean, but it is as good as new now! We played with it all morning until lunchtime (no spaghetti sauce on this toy that has lived 40 years so far, please!)...

I've been meaning to photograph some of my recent finds. One of these days :) What vintage finds have you found lately?

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Pretty Little Skirts

The Froggy Skirt

The Chicky Skirt

The Panda Skirt

The Elephant Skirt

The first vintage linens I ever purchased were from a little old lady at a church yardsale up the street from my house. I was looking for clothes for Emma but I ran across her little square on the parking lot and spotted them immediately. All bundled up, 2 pillowcases and a sheet for $4. She said they were on her guest bed for years and she was happy they were going to a new home. I didn't have the heart to tell her that eventually I was going to chop them all up! If she saw that little chick skirt up there, I'm sure she'd agree that they were re-purposed appropriately ;) and my dear husband... bless his heart. He must have thought I was on crack when I started scouring thrift shops twice a week to buy old lady sheets. He totally gets my vision now and even helps me with my hunt for pretty vintage sheets :)

These little skirts are my newest little creations. I like that I could add a little touch of my trademark felt whimsy to them ;) There are two others that I need to photograph tomorrow, a puppy and a bunny... and now I'm out of pillowcases. Sad! :( As if sheets weren't hard enough to find, pillowcases are even tougher. I'm on the hunt so I can fluff my inventory for some spring markets, but for now, these 6 will have to do. :) Some are in my shop now, and some more will be added tomorrow and Saturday. I was trying to think of my next project, but it just may be sewing something pretty up for my own little pretty girl. :)

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

a little glimpse

a snapshot of today's workspace :)

This week I made some cute felt appliques with a plan to put them on skirts made from vintage pillowcases I've been collecting for nearly a year now. I'll have 6 ready to list in my shop by the weekend. It makes me so excited to create new things.