Monday, December 25, 2006

Bond...James Bond (to own)

Why Sony has not made the picture on the right into an actual poster, I have no idea.

I think it could make as much if not more money than the official one and it would have international appeal.

Let's see if we can get a campaign started...I'm sure Daniel Craig wouldn't mind.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Yes, I bought even more fabric...

I found out that the Hancock Fabric's on Midlothian Turnpike had more of the now discontinued Laurie Smith Collection on sale. (Thank you Helen!) So of course, I had to buy the missing pieces.

I bought enough of these two on the left to make the bolster(s) for the sofa. I'm not so sure about the Denyse Schmidt now because it is such a small-scale print. I didn't realize until I got the dark green print home that it was the outdoor weight and not the upholstery weight.

So, I think I will use it for the door draft stoppers instead, which is what Not Martha did with the orange print. Yesterday, I also bought some aquarium stones to weigh them down.

So the choice is now between the chartreuse and the print for the bolsters on the purple couch.

For some reason in this picture, the couch is true-to-life color but not the fabrics. See pic at top for real color representation of the bolster fabrics. Of course, there is also the possibility of using them back to back for versatility.

I also picked up 1 1/2 yards of this great tablecloth vinyl to make my sewing machine cover. I just became impatient waiting to find just the right print in oilcloth.

Okay, so no more fabric for a while. But the sale was so good that I bought all of this, a Vintage Vogue dress pattern on sale, and enough fabric for quite a few holiday gifts for under $25 dollars!

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Getting back to sewing my own clothes

Fabric shopping:

  • Three Simplicity patterns on sale, three for less than $7. Yes, I was able to buy two Built by Wendy patterns on sale for $1.99 each!
  • Felt and fabric for some holiday presents, with more fabric and felt to come.
  • Sueded cotton for one Built by Wendy Simplicity 4111 top (view B) and McCall's 8251, a real retro bell-sleeved top (see below) that I will use for this months SewRetro project.
  • Some Denyse Schmidt fabric, Posie in turquoise, for another McCall's 4111 Built by Wendy blouse (view B) or the other vintage-style Simplicity shirt pattern.
  • Even more Denyse Schmidt fabric, Medallion in green, for a home decor project.

I love fabric!

Cure Living Room Update:

I just ordered this Denyse Schmidt print, Medallion in green, to make the two 9-inch bolster pillows for the back of my loveseat.

Here is the loveseat again.

Remember, I'm going for this look:

I think it is going to look great. I'm so excited!

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Ask the Internet a question...

and it will give you an answer.

This site, This to That, will answer the question:

What should I use if I need to attach __ to __?

What if you need to attach fabric to Styrofoam? Or Styrofoam to Styrofoam?

Well, this is the place to go for answers.

Their motto:

Because people have a need to glue things to other things

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Ever wanted your own Radio Station...

From Pandora, a Music Genome Project:

Can you help me discover more music that I'll like?

Those questions often evolved into great conversations. Each friend told us their favorite artists and songs, explored the music we suggested, gave us feedback, and we in turn made new suggestions. Everybody started joking that we were now their personal DJs.

We created Pandora so that we can have that same kind of conversation with you.

streaming music based on your personal tastes.

Try it out!

What are you waiting for?!

Check out my first Pandora station on my sidebar.

* Supported by advertising, of course!

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Loveseat Update:

I found two place online where someone actually photo documented their sofa reupholstering project, here and here. I was amazed that in this current DIY culture that reupholstering instructions were not easier to find and believe me, I tried!



I did finally sew the adjustments I pinned into my store bought slipcover way back when I started this blog. I altered the arms and it makes a HUGE difference that they now fit. I was able to keep the piping in place so it looks as if it was originally made to fit. I have a small loveseat and I bought a slipcover for a slightly larger one so it still has too much length from arm to arm and the elastic they put in back for adjustments just bunches up. I will have to take it off again, turn it inside out, and pin some more adjustments for those changes. However, with just this small change, it fits better and doesn't slide around as much when in use.

I also seriously looked into prices on foam for the one-piece bench cushion I want. I entered the dimensions (44" x 26" x 4") into the appropriate forms on and They each offer different grades of foam in three densities. Since this is going to be a temporary solution I selected the lowest grade and a medium density foam.

Foam Order's quote came to $68.85.
Foam Source's quote came to $63.24.

Very doable.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Love Love Lanetz Living!

Due to my voracious web surfing I find cool sites, products, ideas, and advice all the time from all over the world. Today I want to tell my fellow sewing friends about one of them.

I read A Dress A Day daily which is literally what it sounds like. A discussion or presentation of some great dress (usually vintage) found online and why it appeals to the writer.

Well, sometimes she uses vintage patterns as examples, because since she can sew, it is possible for her to recreate some of these dresses that she presents. She mentioned one source of vintage patterns about a month ago; Lanetz Living, and how they were offering a discount to her readers.

I started stalking the site looking for gems. She has so many patterns and most of them have never been used. Maybe the cover isn't as pretty as it once was, but the pattern pieces are like new. One Sunday morning, I ordered three patterns online using my discount. I also received free shipping because I had ordered three or more items.

Wednesday afternoon, I came home for lunch and there they were. In a tiny Manila envelope, each in its own ziploc baggie with a sheet of stationary notepaper ready to jot down all the pertinent details of each project.

Yes, they are very simple and I could definitely sew more advanced garments.

However, these are so classic in style and with the right fabric they could be spectacular! Most of my clothes are in solid colors, but with these simple shapes I am going to take advantage of the great patterned fabrics out there now. Hello, Cia's Palette or Reprodepot!

Check out Lanetz Living, their selection is great and the customer service is the best I've encountered on the Web to date.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Finding Inspiration

When you are about to tackle a HUGE project it is best to be inspired for success.

1st Inspiration:

While searching for sofa reupholstering information, I found the above sofa image. See the similarity between that and mine...the rolled arms? I prefer rectangular block arms so I needed to find a rolled armed sofa that I liked for inspiration purposes. I like the way this sofa looks without all the cushions, which in my case are lumpy cushions.

2nd Inspiration:

A great redo of a traditional sofa showed up in the pages of the fall/winter 06 issue of Real+Life Decorating, unfortunately, they don't have pictures available on the Web so I had to scan it in. They not only covered a camelback sofa in an incredible chili-red velvet color but they also gloss painted the wood legs to match. Then they added a great patterned gold/red/brown bolster to lay across the back.

I am thinking that if I take my loveseat above and...
    • Strip and recover the base of the loveseat in a great solid color,
    • make one bench cushion for the seat; eliminating the sliding around that the two cushions do now, and
    • remove the lumpy back cushions and replace them with one fabulous funky bolster across the back...I just might be able to fall in love with my loveseat.
    What do you think?

      Monday, August 21, 2006

      Peaches and cheese?

      I scooped this easy recipe from the blog Something to Say. I must try this. It's a weird combination but my mouth is already watering.

      Cut some peaches in half and grill them or cook them in a cast iron skillet until heated throughout. Immediately fill the hollows with 3 tablespoons of gorgonzola or blue cheese and some walnuts. If desired, you can drizzle them with honey too.

      Sunday, August 13, 2006

      Respect mah authoritah?

      Sunday Morning did a feature about South Park, and I felt inspired to finally create my own South Park character. I had seen personalized versions on other blogs and wanted to try it out.

      I like the tool on the official site much better but for some reason they don't make it possible for you to copy or save your creation. So after a very simple Google search I found the CustomSouthParks generator and made my doppelganger. It is as good as it could get using the options available. For it to truly look like me, the hoop earrings would have to be silver and bigger, the hair curlier, and the glasses a different shape. I was also very disappointed that this was the darkest skin color possible. That definitely would not work if you wanted to recreate a Chef-like skin color.

      She is cute, however, the original is much more edgy and unique.

      I did try everything I could with the code to get rid of the sign, but no luck.

      Thursday, August 10, 2006

      Glorious glorious day

      After almost two weeks, I finally mustered up the courage to see how I did in my very last Spanish class. [If I pass this class, I will have fulfilled my foreign language requirement for my major.] This class was so hard, it was not wise to take on a subject that you don'’t feel strong in during an accelerated summer session. There were only five weeks to learn about five different ways to describe something that happened in the past.

      As Charlie Brown said so eloquently, ARRRGGGGHHHH!!!!

      Oh, where was I? Yes, I finally checked my grades. My biggest fear was that I would fail and have to take this class all over again during a normal length semester. I don'’t know how to describe it, I have had such a hard time motivating myself to learn this language. This last instructor told me after my oral exam that my pronunciation was great, I just had to work on my vocabulary (haven't learned enough words) and my grammar. So whatever I am capable of saying, at least Spanish-speakers will not laugh and point at me. I have to take it again? Did it cause damage to my rising grade point average? Or did I not only NOT fail but did I surpass my own expectations and receive a C?

      I did, I did! This particular grade, a C, is at this moment in time the most beautiful grade in the world to me! I still even ended up with a 3.0 GPA for the semester.

      I am now content. I know I will learn Spanish in my own time, only now because I will feel comfortable talking to people and not because I have to for a grade.

      Wednesday, August 09, 2006

      IKEA is wonderfully cheap

      This weekend, I was just in the general IKEA area saying goodbye to great friends who are moving to Italy for two years. They will also take two of the sweetest little girls in the world with them, my "god daughters".

      However, on my way home, I ended up in IKEA. Since going to Miami on vacation two weeks ago, I have no money. I was just going to look...there is no harm in that, right?

      Well, I did end up spending some money, but it was very little, I swear! In fact, I only spent $8.

      1. BETTAN cushion cover is to be made into a skirt much like FehrTrade did here. She inspired me to try it too. I don't wear a lot of bright colors, so I decided to take a risk, and for $6.99, how could I resist? One thing I don't understand is why they chose to show the back on the web site, when this other side is more exciting. I am going to try to make it while keeping the zipper intact and just adding a few darts, a solid color band for a waistband, and a hem. However, the zipper would be the full length of the skirt, so perhaps I need to think about this a little more. I'll keep you (If there IS anyone out there?) informed.

      2. SKOGSBAR plant pot. This is an incredible deal at $.99 a pot! Come on? I'm not talking a clay pot, which goes for about $3-4. This is a glazed stoneware pot, available in great colors for less than a dollar. I want to get them in the green, orange, and yellow. Hopefully, next time I will be able to keep a plant alive as my Calla Lily passed away about four weeks ago.

      Thursday, August 03, 2006

      Miami Architecture

      My host outside the Versace mansion.

      I wish I had more pictures. But of course, the one the day I saw the most beautiful things, the camera was on the other side of Miami Beach, up nine floors, in the condo. My host was gracious enough to bring me back the next day to catch some of the images.


      Wednesday, August 02, 2006

      Miami coming soon

      Photos from Miami!
      Like this one of the Versace mansion.

      A stitch in time...

      I have decided to do some sewing.

      Most of the sewing I have done in the last few years has been for housewares. Pillows, bookcase curtains to cover the clutter, slipcovers for my computer monitor, keyboard, and headboard. In addition, I also made, if you can call it sewing, bulletin board covers.


      Now I am getting an itch to make more clothes.

      When I was in college, I made the half of the wardrobe that I did not get at thrift/vintage stores or swaps with friends.

      These were pretty elaborate things, a wool cocoon-like coat (see below), a slinky red gown with orange lining, a sweetheart neckline tea-length dress made of baby blue brocade fabric. I had a rockabilly red polka-dot dress, a Parisian themed outfit, a revamped black leather jacket that I cropped and elasticized at the back, and quite a few wasp-waited 50'’s dresses (these I bought).

      Let us just say I had a very schizophrenic wardrobe back then. Any era or style that caught my fancy was represented. But then again, I had my mother make me Issey Miyake outfits from Vogue patterns when I was in Junior High school! Can you believe that? I actually wore that whole ensemble below in 8th grade!

      I still wear the cocoon coat for special occasions. I made it in a silky chocolate brown wool and never put the shoulder pads in so it looks more like a 1930's cocoon wrap coat than anything.

      So I just joined the SewRetro blog community, a group of retro-minded sewing enthusiasts like me. This months project is to make a back-to-school/fall wardrobe staple. One of the members listed these new Simplicity Retro patterns.

      I might try my hand at one of these, along with the dress I'm finishing from the Target Ipanema fabric.

      Wednesday, July 26, 2006

      I was way too late

      Guess what? I missed out on getting another Ipanema tablecloth from Target. Why oh why did I keep putting it off?

      I checked the clearance shelves at two stores and NONE of that line was to be found, not even a table napkin. The tablecloth was never even offered through the website. So that's that.

      So I have a little under three yards of this 60 inch fabric. The dress I had decided on calls for 1 5/8 yards of 60 inch fabric, so it is still a go. In addition, I want to make a matching purse and another Heather Bailey headband to go with it. The headband could come from the scraps easily and the clutch purse would only take half a yard.

      However, it most definitely will not be finished by the end of the month for the SewRetro group. I just finished my last test today and now I have to study for my final written and oral exams in Spanish on Friday. (Don't you just love the accelerated schedule of a 5-week long semester course?) Later on that day I will be on my way to sunny Miami for a much needed vacation until Monday. So I will have to catch up with the group on the August project.

      Sunday, July 16, 2006

      What do you think I should do?

      I picked this tablecloth up two months ago at Target because I loved the pattern from their almost-gone Ipanema line. But now that I have it at home, I'm not sure what to do with it. I thought about:
      1. using it for my first reupholstering experiment on the loveseat...sooo needs something
      2. making napkins from it by adding trim and other fabrics like these at Anthropologie
      3. making a dress from the fabric, maybe something like McCall's 4502
      4. or buying more fabric and making Butterick 4790? But how much more, since the dress wants 4 yards just for the contrast part?
      5. or just using it as a table cloth for the small dining table.
      I'm still not sure. Any ideas?

      What I do know is that today I'm running out to buy another one, just in case I do figure it out.

      Here are some more views of the print and the Ipanema line. If you want some though you better hurry!