Saturday, February 27, 2010

Little Crafty Bits

Starting to make & gather for some "little buttons."
In the process of dying an entire lot of kiddie tees & onesies all the colors of the rainbow.
Then I'm embellishing with rhinestones, buttons, ribbon, fabric appliques, embroidery, whatever!
This is a project I use to "fill-in the gaps" between the larger ones.
It's nice & easy.
There is a lot of room for creativity & it is instantly gratifying & fun.

I've always wanted to embellish a light switch. (Nerd alert!)
So when I found a random naked one in our "catch all" drawer, I got busy!
After! Ah...a pretty dress for my fashion passion!
I cut this image from an old Vogue.
I did this in about ten minutes. I cut the image and literally
slopped the mod podge on.
I guess you can kinda tell it was a rush job,
but I actually like the effect.
It no longer looks like a shiny fashion mag photo!

Here's to finding joy in little crafty bits!
PS: Just found this great post by Heather- Roundup: Using Old T-Shirts!
So many great ideas. I especially love that wreath.
Check-it out and make something! :)

Friday, February 26, 2010

A T's Tease...

I welcomed the snowy morning with coffee and this tutorial. It was my second time doing this and I finally got it! After struggling with threads broken during the ruffling process, I finally understand why someone once suggested fishing line is best for that job.
While all my bits & pieces of sewing pile-up on the rack, I thought
I would go ahead and share what I had patience to photograph this morning.
Here is the halter top I made using Generation T, my new favorite sewing book.
The link above is to the site, which I love as well.
This was made from a t-shirt I scored at Salvation Army for 99 cents! So happy with this, not to mention I love this NY band!

Here is a sneak peak at my Miss Mary Mack dress while its under (re)construction!

That's an ex's old t-shirt!
I just placed one of Cub's dresses over it as a pattern and cut it out A-line style.
It is now sleevless and will soon have a ruffled neckline.
I'm going to sew big black satin bows down the front. And the back...
well- I'll wait to surprise you, but I'm sure you can guess
what will go back there!

Reconstructing t-shirts has been one of the most exciting things for me as far
as recent sewing goes. I'm learning a lot and can't wait till the weather warms up so
I can sport my new attire.
Starting March 1st, I'll be posting what I make over on Wardrobe Refashion,
which has been an endless source of inspiration to me.

Happy Weekend, Everyone!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Inspiration Tee

I haven't been taking a lot of photos lately. My camera batteries died and I was too lazy to pick-up new ones. The other problem is...I've been sewing LATE at night. That is when I feel most inspired and motivated for creating. I've always been that way. This means I am a tired ol' mess in the morning; downing two cups of coffee before I teach my first class!
I have been doing so much with t-shirts lately.
I get the biggest kick out of thrifting for the coolest/cutest ones then taking them home and making something adorable. So far I've sewn shrugs, an angular 80's tunic, halter top, and a punky-gathered tank. Then I became real daring Tues. evening and made a halter dress out of an XL funky American Apparel tee. It was surprisingly quick & easy.
Last night involved sewing the ruffle on to a (refashioned tee) dress I'm making for Cub.
I'm calling it the Miss Mary Mack dress.
I also dared to begin a (get this) bikini, which will probably just end up being undies.
So, so excited and can't wait to share...but I realize this involves daylight & some form of modeling the clothes or at least draping them all pretty on a hanger or my new dress form, so you can see what I've made & I can be all proud.
Until I get that together, I just wanted to share a wee bit of inspiration.

Doesn't get any more 80's than that!
Love my stripes & that little bow up there is a sweet touch. Makes the shirt, in my opinion.
You can find this and other beauties right here.

Monday, February 22, 2010


We were honored to be spoiled by a total "Girl's Day Out" yesterday with our favorite ladies!
The loooong day ended with an early supper at Alice's Teacup-an Alice In Wonderland-themed cafe. But before that, we did some power browsing/shopping at FAO Schwarz.
My brother and I would go about once a year around the holidays when we were kids.
My grandparents would allow us to pick out one toy we really wanted. So, we continued the tradition with my girl yesterday.
The doll floor is so extensive and quite breath-taking.
Being a doll-lover, I was in seventh heaven right along with my girl.
Just look at these diva Barbies posing right in front of the floor-to-ceiling windows.
Aren't they just so fabulous in their black attire? Sooooo NYC.

There is even an automated runway show that is fairly hypnotic. Cub was indeed captivated...but not enough to choose a Barbie to take home!
My personal favorite are the Madame Alexander Dolls.
Oh. My. Stars.
My knees almost buckled when I saw the entire wall filled with these 8-inch more lovely than the other! This is just a small corner of the wall.

Here is one of my absolute favorites.
How could I resist that green face? Ohhhhhh. Love.
(She is a character from the Broadway Musical Wicked, btw.)
Because I spent money like water during our vacation, I had to refrain and put her back on the shelf. So sad. But I'll be back for her real soon, though.
I have always promised myself that one day I will have a PROPER doll house and a SERIOUS doll collection. I will definitely start with one of these dolls...or two or three!

And these!!!
There are no words to express how I feel about these.
I could cry just looking at them!
What is it about those borderline creepy, blank-stare faces that I simply adore?

This Mama left the store with a lot of candy-colored photos to remember the experience.
But my little Leo found a "baby" to adopt from the real life Baby Doll Nursery up on the second floor. She picked this one out from the glass incubators. The nurse brought her over
and Cub had to answer lots of questions and fill-out paper work.
It was all so "official" and absolutely adorable. She was so excited!
So, we finally have a new baby at our house after all.

She named the baby girl Kayleanna
and told the nursery that she was born on December 9th at 7pm!
She is such a good Mommy, too.

"Thank heaven...for little girls."

Friday, February 19, 2010

Our Lovely Week

How gorgeous is this Paper Chandelier?
Love it so much, it hurts!
Something about this photo just makes me feel good, too.

Our week off has been a combination of being silly busy and having some real relaxing down time...(buble-baths included!):

1. Short family vacation out on Long Island including a beautiful Valentine's Day!

2. Lots of out-to-dinner with friends.

3. Important tasks and errands were completed...finally!

4. I actually watched THREE films, too: Beowulf (EXHILARATING! And one of my new favorites), An Education (STYLISH & GORGEOUS), and L'Appartement (French, 1996- SEXY/QUIRKY/COOL). Yep, I loved them all...a lot! Before this lovely week is over I will finish Precious and Food, Inc. Can't wait...

5. Tons of crafting & creating: Finished some WIPS, lots of cute t-shirt recons, fabric dyeing,
some crochet for Craft Hope. I also attended a sewing fundraiser for Haiti...and did way too much thrifting! Currently working on Cub's "Miss Mary Mack" dress!

6. Finally have taken the two month pledge. Excited!
There are three more days of fun planned including a brunch date at Alice's Teacup in nyc.
I think I'm more excited than Cub!
I will have to get batteries for my camera so that I can share pics of everything soon.
And I wanted to leave you with a really cute t-shirt recon by one of my favorite crafty gals, Whitney. This pillowcase tut is so practical and adorable. I've already made one for little girl and she loves its softness and the graphic isn't too shabby, either (vintage Muppets).

And let me not forget the best #7: My Cub has been busy drawing & making her books, using her new electric pencil sharpener to its fullest capacity...and making animal puppets! Thanks to the beautiful Kristin for that amazing puppet-making kit. We love you!!

Yes, we have been busy bees here! It has been a really fun week together.

Blessings, Everyone.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

A Snowy Day

Introducing my latest crafty love-
upcycling & refashioning sweaters!
I am dreaming of something BIG in my future with all of this- and one day, God willing-
it will be a reality. Until then, I'm having fun teaching myself a lot about clothing,
fabric, and putting it all together.
Last weekend, I found the most beautiful 80's Liz Claiborne sweater at the thrift mart for $6.00.
So far, I've been able to make three pairs of mittens out of it- Papa bear, Mama bear, and
Baby bear size!
I really wish I had some sweet red velvet ribbon to trim the bottom of them!
Super easy to make: Trace your hand on a piece of paper to make a mitten pattern. Don't forget to include your wristies, too. I usually add about an inch more around the pattern to allow for seam allowances, etc. It is especially nice to place the paper pattern on the sweater so the wrist rests on the elastic waistband part of your sweater for the benefit of a finished edge.
For Cub's pair, I zig-zagged the edges of the mitten wrist to prevent unraveling.
With wrong sides together, sew around the mitten using a zig-zag stitch.
When finished, turn inside-out and you have a lovely pair of
mittens for yourself or a loved one.
Enjoy the day, Everybody.
It is a winter wonderland here.
The snow is gorgeous
and we have a day off!!!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Another Work In Progress

(Sorry about the blur. They can't all be winners! )
There is my baby taking a rare nap this weekend. Hee, hee.
She is such a big girl, really. So, it just makes me giggle with delight that she still sucks her thumb. Sounds funny, right? But it is one of the few glimpses into her "baby-ness" that I still get to enjoy. So sweet...
The work in progress is the wall above the couch.
We had a hemp line hanging on the wall with all her artwork hanging from clothes pins.
We frequently rotated artwork and photos.
Recently, I had the feeling the room needed to be cleaned-up and minimized a bit.
You wouldn't be able to tell from our small apartment, but I really
am a minimalist when it comes to dwelling places and furnishings.
I appreciate neat, stylish rooms on the sparse side.
So, I've been on a mission to frame my favorite pieces of her work
and to do a hodge-podge wall. All the frames are thrifted and/or purchased at the dollar store.
There are about five more frames I need to put together and hang.
Some still need glass, but that is what Michael's is for!
Tonight, using this for inspiration...I've had fun cutting up a light pink cashmere sweater my Grandma gave me about 10 years ago. I haven't had the heart to donate it for obvious reasons, but hey- I hold on to cashmere! It's just too soft not to. I cut the ugly zipper out, cut a new neck-line and have been crocheting around the edges with my favorite Moda Dea (discontinued!) Rave yarn.
I'm planning on topping it all off with a vintage brooch for the closure.
I'll be sharing it real soon.
Love the refashioning oh, so much!
Life is beautiful.

Friday, February 5, 2010

You Make My Day

Dear Song of My Heart
Joy of My Life,
Thank-you for blessing me with your being.
Thank you for that beautiful paper doll you made me this evening;
How you glued it to the cardboard paper towel tube so that it would stand...
"So you can play with it, Mom."
...For the drawings you leave in my room for me at least once a week.
And if that isn't enough...
You've made me happy for the rest of my life-
the day you were born and each day thereafter.
Tonight, before falling asleep...
"I love you, Mom.
Each day you make my heart grow bigger and bigger."
You make it all worthwhile.
Thank you,
Your Mama