Saturday, September 1, 2012

that's a wrap!

have you seen this?
The Bina Wrap

I first ran across it on pinterest. i saw this pin,
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which led me to this tute
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i was totally intrigued. so i decided to research the original product, which i started this post off with. there are so many ways to wear this wrap. i loved the idea and the concept. so i went to my stash to see what knit fabric i had. i don't have many. i have a winter white that is a medium weight, a wonderful soft teal that is a light weight and a soft blue that is also a medium weight. i felt all would be versatile with my wardrobe and so i began looking at the tutes available to make my own.
i chose the winter white knit fabric. i decided that i liked the idea of having two side seams to help with the support and shaping of the fabric. the tricky part was trying to figure out just how much fabric to use.  the tute above gives the guidance of three time the width of your hips. but then i discovered this tute

Peaceably Pretty: DIY Bina Wrap Cardigan ~another tute on the bina. a little more helpful as far as measurements go

and she said she didn't feel you needed that much in the back. so i adjusted the width of the back. i ended up with a back panel that measured 48 inches and two front panels that were 24 inches. i made my armholes 13 inches wide. after all i began to realize that this was not an exact science sort of garment. i ended up trying a couple of the styles out of the wrap. did i take pictures? uh ho ho ho, uh no. i don't think so. but i will share some of my discoveries with  you.

 discovery #1:  the back needs to be wide because of the way you wrap this....wrap(embarrassed grin) around yourself.
discovery #2: you need a light weight knit. it is amazing how fast this garment gets heavy with the fabric bunched up on your shoulders and around your neck.
  discovery #3: even though the armholes might look big, they need to be at least big enough to slip over your head and to be able to dangle off one shoulder (for the tunic).
discovery #4:  that you can decide which length to make it, but it's a bit easier to achieve the looks with the garment on the longer side than shorter.
and discovery #5: the most interesting aspect of this wrap, that i wish i had noticed before i even began this experiment. this wrap is better suited to a thinner person.
it was one of those head slapping durh! moments. i suddenly noticed the very obvious. the one thing that all the tutes and the website itself has in common, all the models are THIN. i am probably best described as....curvy or rubenesque. or let say i would prefer to be described that way. i am, nor have i ever been, thin or svelte.
i was playing around with my medium weight winter white knit wrap. i was bunching here and placing my left arm there, and every time i looked in the mirror i suddenly had added an extra 5 to 20 pounds of wrinkle to my curvy self. yeah not really the effect i was looking for. i then decided maybe i had too much yardage. i decided to try the soft blue medium weight knit fabric. it was a smaller piece and a little bit lighter. on this piece i was feeling daring and just decided to cut the slits in the fabric for the arm holes as opposed to seaming. this second attempt was when i learned the reason for the large back panel. and no matter how much yardage i had or didn't have this was just not the garment for me. so i folded up my knit fabric and decided that's a wrap!


Monday, July 2, 2012

June Package Pals

in may i saw this blog post on the craft blog. having never joined anything like this before, i decided to give it a try. luckily jamie, was giving us the month of june to put the package together. my pal assigned to me was nicole from sew much sunshine blog. she's a lovely crafter. you should check out her shower curtain, now there's something you don't get to say everyday. and you should check out her tute for the customized outdoor bench cushion. very cool. of course i was a goof and didn't get a pic of the package i sent her. oh no, that would make way too much sense. but i can show off the wonderful package nicole sent me. 
look at all those amazing goodies. it was such a lovely monday surprise. i just hope she enjoys the package i sent her as much. one funny thing about the package i sent her, was i included a blank journal as well. i guess it just means that great crafting minds think alike.


Tuesday, June 26, 2012

a single sheet

a little while ago, ok two years ago,

i purchased a fat quarter set of vintage sheets.
 i wanted to make a quilt. something simple, light weight and good for spring and summer. maybe a quilt to be used on a picnic or just spread on the grass to look at the stars.
fast forward to two garage sale-ing weekends ago

when i found this twin flat sheet. i'm not sure what it is about linens and me, but whenever i go to a garage sale i am always drawn to them. i found this single solitary sheet and thought well you can never have two many sheets. right? i mean sheets, especially flat sheets can be handy for soooo many things. they can be used to make quick tents, or the walls for forts. they can be used to make a fun and funky skirt, a light and breezy nightie or pajama bottoms. see there are so many uses for sheets.  have i rationalized my crazy preoccupation with sheets yet? (crickets chirping) moving right along.....

i brought home this solitary sheet and put it with it's other brethren in the already packed linen closet. then on sunday i suddenly had an urge to get out the vintage sheet fat quarter set. as soon as i saw them i thought of that sheet, low and behold, a perfect pairing. the colors are great together. 

 i realize my photography skills are somewhat lacking. (crickets chirping) again. ok they're horrible. but you get the idea of these fabrics compatibility.
you might notice that i added a plain ivory fabric, it's the one at the bottom. i used an vintage pillow case and cut it up to match the size blocks i am going to use. i am going to do some vintage embroidery designs on these ivory pieces of fabric. 

 i've picked out these three designs.

and this will be the floss palette. 
all in all not a bad project inspiration from one single bed sheet.


Saturday, June 23, 2012

what a saturday

you would think that all saurdays would be lovely wouldn't you? but not all saturdays are created equal. some have you running from the moment your feet hit the floor. other saturdays have you or some other family member with a case of the grumpy bumps or some other ill attitude. then there are saturdays where you find nothing comes together and you wish that you never left the warm confines of your soft bed. but then, then there are saturdays like today.

I woke up remembering that my dh wanted to check to see if a book was still available at a garage sale that we had visited yesterday. i got up, took a shower,

 put on my shirt, that i had finally finished, and my handy, dandy, trusty levi's and went downstairs. i had to remind dh about the book, but once he remembered, he was up and at 'em and we were out the door. we made it back to the sale we had been to the previous day. unfortunately, for us, the book we were wondering about had already been purchased. but we did find a few treasures to bring home. feeling daring and curious we drove by the sign corner. do you all have one of these in your small town? an unofficial street corner that everyone and anyone having a garage sale posts their signs. luckily for us, we do. as i was saying, we drove by the sign corner and saw a couple of new garage sales for the day. off we went. we found one sale outside a church, always a good sign. it wasn't the whole church having the sale just some of the ladies. i was able to find an air bake cookie sheet,

 this fun sign, and an old picture. after we left that sale we noticed signs pointing the way to another sale that would take us quite off the beaten path. now i'm not sure about you and how you feel about garage sales out in the booneys but around here i have discovered that more times than not they lead to disappointment. either the items for sale are;
a. so highly price
b. beyond repair
c. unidentifiable.
but throwing caution to the wind we let the signs guide us. we came upon a road that forked with a final sign that informed us that there were actually two sales. we looked at the one closest to us and thought it looked more like heavy tools. because we were dealing with limited funds, translate to $6.00, and no place to put large heavy tools, we decided to try the other path. it took us to a smallish sale. at first i thought that my hypothesis would be proven true. i did find some shirts for dh , but they were a bit high.

i picked this one up anyways since it is silk and was in beautiful shape. we perused around a bit and then dh noticed a cuisinart ice cream/frozen yogurt maker in a cheerful red color. it look brand new and i didn't think the $20 price tag was asking too much. but as i stated earlier we didn't have that. but all of a sudden i and spotted a vintage stand mixer sitting right next to the cuisinart. woo hoo! i have been wanting a stand mixer. of course i would love a kitchenaide robin's egg blue stand mixer, but the price is too far out of reach for our frugal budget.  me being the vintagey gal that i am thought a vintage stand mixer would fit the bill instead and fit in our small kitchen. this mixer was a mere $5, with the original glass bowl, bread hook and the mixey things ( yeah i know try and keep up with all my technical terminology). unfortunately since we only had $6 and dh's shirt was priced at $3, i wasn't quite sure how i was going to pull this off. of course asking the lady if she would bargain was an option, and one i always practice. but then my dh came to the rescue by remembering he had a $1 in his pocket. (between you and me i think he was holding out on me, but when he saw how i was beginning to suffer at the thought of leaving the mixer behind he decided he would kick in and put me out of my misery.) we approached the lady and we offered our collective grand $7 and she took it. i was thrilled!

so now this sweet machine sits in our kitchen. it assisted me in making the chocolate chip cookies ( i use this recipe) you see in the pic and worked like a dream.

i hope your saturday was one of the good ones. i know mine was.


Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Ebay selling

being the thrifty vintage kind of gal i am, i buy from ebay quite often. it's actually my go to spot when i think about buying something. years ago i did sell something on ebay and ending up dealing with a not so nice buyer. it sort of put me off of the idea of selling anything. i did have an etsy shop for awhile and it was actually a lovely positive experience. but at the time the boys were smaller and needed more of my attention.  i couldn't devote as much time to driving the etsy business as i would have liked. so it just sits there all forlorn.
lately my dear husband, dh, has decided to work on some vintage singer sewing machines. he would like to fix them up and then sell them. he has been concentrating on 99k's and Spartans. but to start on such a venture takes some capitol. this then lead me to poking around to see what lovely treasures i had that i didn't mind parting with or things i thought would actually sell. i found some of my shoes that have sat in the closet for far too long, not getting any wear. and i took the leap and listed them on ebay. right now i simply have two pairs listed.

the first pair i listed were my minnetonka boots. i love them but they are just way too big for me, size 11. i think  i wore them a whole two times. i bought them to go to a renaissance fair. the fair was great, the outfit was terrific, but the boots were just too big. so they just sat being unused. i have felt bad about his for quite a few years now and decided that hopefully someone could get some use out of them.

these sexy beasts are the other pair i listed. they are such a cute shoe. but there again just waaaaayyyyyy toooo big for me. they are made by paul green. on the shoe they are labeled as an 8.5 but they are actually a size 11. don't ask me what happen with me ending up with two pairs of shoes size 11, when i only wear a size 9.5 to 10 at the biggest. these shoes are so fun and flirty but i never wore them because of the size issue.  there again i;m hoping someone will want them so i can get them out of my closet and maybe even add a bit of coin to our purse.

if you get the chance click on the links and give them a perusal and hey maybe even bid on them. although if you just can't wait to purchase the boots i did a buy it now option on the auction. so feel free to give them a new home.


Monday, June 18, 2012

A sticky tip for sewing

i had decided some time ago that i would like to have a striped bateau neck t-shirt.  i shopped around for awhile and then decided i would be better off sewing one. minor problem, i had not machine sewn any knit fabric before. but i decided that wasn't going to stop me. i found a pattern, new look 6838, that i thought would work and some fabric. i cut out the pattern, and then it just sat there waiting for me to work on it. i even ran across this tip on pinterest about sewing on knit fabric and doing away with wavy seams.

then today i decided to try to work on the shirt. i got out the pattern, the cut fabric, my scissors, my pins, and my lovely featherweight. i am not a very experienced sewer, even though i have sewn for quite a few years. and while i adore my featherweight the needle plate does not have seam allowance marks. so i got out the handy dandy blue painter's tape to make my own seam allowance mark. 

as i started to sew the back seam the edges of the fabric were rolling like crazy. my mum had come to sit with me while i was sewing. she and i got to discussing how knit fabric was notorious for rolling. i mentioned to her the cool tip i had pinned on pinterest. then my mum being the clever and resourceful lady that she is asked why i didn't just try using the painter's tape.

 brilliant! that is exactly what i did, and it worked wonderfully. i simply tore off short pieces of the tape and laid it close to the edge of the fabric on the seam i was preparing to sew.

i also pinned the pieces together below the tape.

i then zipped it up on the sewing machine.

how it looks after it's sewn

then comes the fun part of taking the tape off. since i used a painter's tape, available at most hardware stores in the paint department, it is a low tack and is easy to remove. i simply tore off one side of the stitching.

and then the other side. as you can see the fabric started to curl up.

sometimes when you pull the tape off a wee bit of the tape gets stuck under the stitches. don't worry it's quite easy to remove. so there you have it a sticky tip for sewing knit fabric.

if you give this tip a try let me know how it works for you.


Monday, June 11, 2012


well it worked! our niece decided to start her own blog. i'm so proud of her. i think she's having fun with it already. she's posted some pix of the lovelies she has made and had a bit of a chat about herself. make sure to have a lovely cuppa when you go and visit her blog. where is it do i hear you asking? well right over here of course........  A Day in the Life of Katie 


Sunday, June 10, 2012

a fairy tale....or is it?

years ago there was a beautiful little girl born into this world. she was full of spunk, creativity, giggles and love. lots of love! 
as time passed a brother joined this little girl and then a boy cousin. the three were good friends and compatriots in all things wee children did. they had adventures and fought imaginary foes. they ran around in their own imaginary world and played their own made up games. they even did the more mundane things of a child's life such as learning to ride bikes together, dying easter eggs and trick and treating 

and then as things do, things changed, unfortunately drastically and not in good way.  the three friends were forced to go on solitary adventures. the young brother went on a journey that forever changed him and his out look on life. the young cousin's adventure was a bit tamer but still had him growing up with out the comfort of his fellow compatriots. and the little girl? her adventure had her go through trials and tribulations. she traveled through dark valleys and she strolled along beautiful seashores.  all the while thinking that she had been forgotten by her childhood companions. 

*now with most fairy tales, we need a happy ending and i think this one has one. 

years passed and the little girl grew up to be a wonderful woman. still full of spunk, creativity and love. she had quite a few scars that she carried but she was strong and vibrant and still full of giggles. one day the young woman was able to be reunited with one of her young friends. the cousin. he was older and wiser and still a willing compatriot to all things young people do. 

i know a rather bland fairy tale. it is a brief and washed over version of what happened to our niece, nephew and our oldest boy. we are very lucky that we have been able to reconnect to our niece. she holds a very special place in my heart. can you tell?  

she has been working on crafting many wonderful things. 

from duck (duct) tape accessories

 to friendship bracelets 

and now she has begun on the adventure of quilling. 

i have been suggesting (translate that to lovingly nagging) her to start a blog. hopefully this little post will be the final push....i mean gentle reminder....(grin) to give it a try. when she gets her blog set up i'll let you all know about it and put the link on here.


Sunday, May 20, 2012

well hello one and all!

hasn't it just been a long time? a year. wow! who would have thunk it?

to play a bit of catch up...and to just touch on some of the highlights of the year in crafting

in 2011 this wee beauty was able to come and join me in my crafting adventures. she is a 1935 singer 221 featherweight sewing machine. she purrs just like a kitten and can handle anything. she came with all sorts of attachments. frankly the attachments baffle me but are fascinating to play with. 

one of the projects we worked on was the Simplicity 2365 blouse pattern. we even used french seams on the pattern, a first for me. we used a lovely medium blue lawn fabric, that i found at a garage sale, of course. we even tried teaming up on creating a quilt for one of the young ones. it turned out rather wonky. i assure you it had nothing to do with my sewing partner, the 221, just me and my quilting abilities.

last year i also became fascinated with ball jointed dolls and tried my hand at painting a face on a hujoo berry style doll.
i realize in this form she appears a bit creepy. 

but i did have a lot of fun  helping her look like this

I apologize for the funky arm position. 
maybe she was trying to say "it took her this long to finally finish me." i realize the face isn't perfect. in this pic her eye shadow looks quite heavy, but in person, it isn't that strong. 
 my mum even got in the fun and knitted the lovely stripey socks. you can kind of get an idea of her towering height by the fact that she is leaning against my laptop screen, which is about 8.75" tall.

and then for Christmas i decided i wanted to try my hand at making  putz/glitter style houses. i  have never really worked with glitter. i loved the results of glitter but working with it can definitely be an adventure. trying to make sure one doesn't sneeze or that the young ones don't come up and try to explain something to you while using the standard sound effects.

 an over all lights out shot

i decided to color and glitter the bottle brush trees. as you can tell from the lovely pink tree in the left hand corner of the pic.

i even tried my hand with making a semi snow globe-ish type glitter house

complete with a wee deer.

all in all a fun and successful crafting year.

and for the crafts for this year? 
well so far I have tried my hand at making some peg/kokeshi style dolls. i completed one but then sent it to our niece and forgot to get a pic of her. duh! anyway's i'm working on another one and will get a pic of her. i am going to try my hand at making some jewelry using shrinky dinks,  inspired by this necklace and then this bracelet tutorial. i also tried my hand a some wire wrapping. (and yes i realize there is a joke in there somewhere) and followed this tutorial

as you can tell by the last three links i am still having fun with pinterest. it is my go to spot when i want to find inspiration or a yummy new recipe. it's also lovely if your friends or family are using it as an easy way to share things that you find on the net.  not that i'm trying to enable you or anything. heaven's forbid! (grin)

anyway it's been a hoot catching up with all and i am going to try and find a little more time to keep up with you all this year.