Monday, January 30, 2012

~ Color Day: PINK ~

'Tis the season for all things PINK.

Yes. PINK grows on trees.

Here's some love from Daughter #2 when she was just a little one. Now she has little ones of her own.

PINK vases ...

 and pillowcases ...
... and a lovely (sensational!) PINK book.

PINK is on pillows here ...

and there ...

... and everywhere.

PINK covers a duvet ...

... and wraps my favorite scent from Anthropologie.

PINK graces some hydrangeas ...

... and outlines some succulents.

Let's face it. In February ...

Pink is to be shared.

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Thursday, January 26, 2012

~ In a Bind ~

Yesterday I had big plans to put the binding on my sail boat quilt so I could (finally!) move on to other projects. I cut the binding strips when I realized ... quite suddenly ... that I was pretty sick with the flu and had a 102 temperature.

Next ... I layed around (moaning may or may not have been involved) for the next 24 hours.

Sometime after noon today I decided to shower and go ahead and resume life. The fever is gone, but the achiness still hangs in there.

I attached said binding to the quilt using a little wider than usual binding to accomodate the rick-rack on the edges.

I got out my handy-dandy sewing kit so I would be ready for the next step ... the hand sewing part ... a part I really love.

I put some binder clips on and I am ready to go to work.

Once I sit down again.

And finish regretting that I may or may not have pushed myself too hard today.

It's totally worth it though. Especially since the next step involves a lot of sitting.

I plan to name her "Permanent Wave." You like??

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Monday, January 23, 2012

~ Random Joy ~

Here are a few random joyful tidbits from my weekend. Let's just say that I am easy to please.

First up: I got my machine back and she hums like a kitten.

Next: I finished the bedskirt. Do the math ... 3/3's is way better than 2/3's.

I love how full and flouncy it is.

While trudging around in the rain with two of my grandkids on Saturday morning, we made a stop at Target. (Duh.) I could not resist this exquisite turquoise slicker with a polka-dot lining. I paid full price for it (and that almost never happens) and wore it out of the store. Of course by then ... it had stopped raining ... but I did not care.

I think she's the perfect compliment to my polka-dot umbrella. Don't you??

Then I spent Saturday afternoon quilting this little watery wonder. I should have her completed by the end of the week.

And how was your weekend?

Were polka-dots involved?

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Thursday, January 19, 2012

~ Color Day: GREEN ~

I was hoping to have some long-and-drawn-out sewing projects done by now and ready to post about, but the fact that my machine is still in the shop (due to the hospitalization of the tech guy, which I am very sorry about and don't begrudge), and alas I still have 2/3 of a bedskirt and 3/4 of a sailboat quilt hanging around.

So I have resorted to another Color Day and this one is in my favorite accent color ... Green. The painted tin above was on the sale table at Anthropologie years ago. That pretty much established my favorite accent color then and there.

Also in the dining room ... this runner by April Cornell.

These are the second set of dining room curtains in the 10 months since I made the first ones. I sewed these babies less than a month before Christmas. What was I thinking? Well, I was thinking about how much I loved that green fabric against my blue walls ... that's what I was thinking.

Here is a lovely (small) oil painting that I picked up at a thrift store for a thrifty ten bucks. I cherish it.

Sometime in November/December I decided I needed more pattern in my home so I picked up this lovely pillow at Target.

This one I have had for years ... probably from Marshall's.

What you see here in my living room is "The Yellow Desk". True story. This is a relatively old piece that I grew up with and for most of my childhood it was painted a pale yellow and at one point had a drop down feature which made a desk surface. Sometime in the 70's (when "antiquing" was all the rage) my mom "antiqued" it (which is odd because I think even at that point it already was a true antique) in this stunning green. My mom was very good with color.

Get a load of all the nooks ...

and crannies.

She also "antiqued" this vanity with the same can of paint. Before it was green it was a dark wood and my sister and I actually used it as ... you guessed it ... a vanity table.

She loves to drink in the sun.

Moving upstairs to the guest room you'll find this lovely fleece blanket ...

... sitting below my Bluebird Quilt with it's green border, binding and leafy quilting.

Both of those things inspired me to paint my IKEA chest with Martha Stewart "Calabash" green paint.

Then I went out and bought that chest a younger sister.

Well, I can NOT deny that my favorite accent of green comes when I open my front door and see ... this.

I do indeed love green. Especially when I find it with these original and masterful paint strokes.

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Monday, January 16, 2012

~ Bedskirt Tutorial ~

I have lived in my home still less than one year, and yet my bed ... and it's dressing ... have been a revolving door of change. Part of the problem is that I made the decisions (and bought new bed linens) before I had actually moved into my house. In fact it was in the summer of 2010 that I purchased the above bed skirt (which was plain white and relatively cheap) and painstakingly sewed the stripes on it (with a "satin" stitch) to match the nautical striped sheets I had previously purchased.

Over the course of the last year I have felt the need for frou frou ... or at least something more feminine in my room. Out with the nautical and in with the pastels. Oh yes, and I also found that the cheap bedskirt was cheap for a reason ... it's about 3 inches too short. One day I was musing on what would make a perfect bedskirt and I decided that a pale blue and white stripe was the ticket. Then I remembered that I had hauled my old (king sized) pale blue and white striped sheets across state lines ... and I was good to go.

I won't go into the details about the measurement and the cutting. What is important here is how the heck do you create a ruffle in something over 150 inches long without breaking a few basting stitches in the process? The answer is ... string. Thin string. You apply it to the (wrong side of the) fabric with a zig-zag stitch (hint: make that zig-zag stitch fairly long and wide to make your life easier), making sure to leave 3 or 4 inches of string on either end to give you something to pull on. You can see that I put a hem at the top of the skirt (I am making the 3 sides of the skirt separately) and that I did not attempt to pull the ruffle through the 3 layers of the hem, placing the string right below that. I used my Bernina #23 foot, but any zig-zag foot will do.

Just for fun I will tell you that several years ago, I picked up this lovely bird tin at an antique's store. It came with that little hole in the top which I figured out was just perfect for my string. I use this string-ruffle technique often on home dec items. I used it in spades when I chose to put ruffles on my white, denim slipcovers.

Back to the bedskirt. I have made bedskirts in the past which I have sewn to a piece of fabric (usually ... the old bedskirt) which lays under the mattress and requires removing the mattress to lay out the skirt and is a rather large pain. The anticipation of dealing with that pain sometimes prevents me from washing said bedskirt as often as I should. (Oh ... you know what I'm talking about.) So this time I chose to attach each side of the skirt separately (hence, the hem at the top) and I chose to do so with good, old-fashioned safety pins. I just moved the mattress to the side a few inches, and when I was done pinning (I used 5 or 6 pins which I attached each piece to the old skirt and not to the box-springs) ...

I moved the mattress back in place ...

... and then attached the other side. At that point I picked up my sewing machine and took it to be repaired/cleaned/oiled ... something that had been on my agenda for weeks.

Unfortunately, I had not yet completed the bottom skirt before I had to do that ... but I will. I promise. I am so in love with my bed and all of it's frills and ruffly feminity. I had everything on hand except the large safety pins so ...

My new bedskirt cost me a grand total of $1.44.

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