Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Hoot! An Owl Tote

Recently I was super lucky as to work with Michelle from Cloud9 Fabrics on this awesome project. Michelle designed this adorable little owl tote to showcase their beautiful fabrics. I got to write the pattern and design the layout. I had a blast because not only did I get to work with Michelle, whom I greatly admire but I got to make this awesome bag first! I made mine with some vintage fabric and yellow canvas I had on hand and I love the way it turned out. This pattern would work so well with so many different fabric combinations. I even heard it suggested that this would make a great Halloween Trick-or-Trick bag! I think that's a fabulous idea and would look so cute made from felt or other Halloween themed material. It's a super quick project (about an hour) and would make really great holiday gifts. You can purchase the pattern here!

Saturday, September 25, 2010

More Printing....

The baby took two marathon naps today, probably because of the cold rainy weather. (Boy, I could have used a nap too...) But, I was able to get a TON of printing done, yahoo! Another new shirt and a two color poster for the mister's band. I'm having a blast!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Totes in the Shop! - And Why I'm Behind with Kids Clothes Week

These pretty new screen printed totes are now in the shop!

I know, I know, I'm dreadfully behind on Kids Clothes Week posts... I honestly haven't gotten much sewing done in the last few days. I have hopes though that I will be able to finish at least a few more things for the kiddos before the Sunday deadline. I've been so super busy this week working on projects for friends. One big one is still a secret but I should be able to share it with you next week. The other is designing and printing new shirts for my husband's band. I'm sure I've mentioned it but he's an upright bass player in a rockabilly band. Those guys and their wives are like our second family and I've been busting my tail this week to get shirts printed for an upcoming gig. I finished these girly tees in the wee hours of this morning. I'm still learning the ropes but I'm pretty pleased with how these turned out being my very first two color shirt! I've got the guys shirts to print and several posters also. I'll share those with you when they're done! Hope everyone is having a really wonderful Friday!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Kids Clothes Week - Day 2

I've been wanting to try making some of these super cute reconstructed kids tees for ages but I've been a) terrified of working with knits, b) terrified of non-pattern sewing and c) too busy. Since I had a full evening last night to myself (yay for the mr.'s band practice nights!) I thought "what the heck, I'll give it a shot". I have a tub full of thrifted tees and knit scraps, so I just went for it and to my great surprise it turned out better than expected! My sewing is still a little wonky, I'm still working on not pulling the knit while sewing but for the most part I was able to iron out any puckering. I started by cutting of the sleeves and collar. Then I cut the diagonal section out to make it look like a raglan style shirt. I used the pieces I cut as templates to cut new pieces and it worked perfectly. My only wish is that I had, had a few more knits in girly colors to make this a little more girly. Adding the ruffles at the bottom definitely helped with that though, even if they don't really match. Best of all, the big girl LOVED it! Success. She wore it to school this morning over jeans. It's totally her style, a little kooky. I'm going to try to get to the thrift store today for supplies to make a few more.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Kids Clothes Week - Day 1

I was able to get some not so stellar pics of what I made last night before the storms came. Ah, I absolutely love this time of year! I spent an hour sewing last night and made some great progress! The first two pairs of baby pants had been sitting around my studio for months, all finished except for putting in the elastic. I did that in about ten minutes and had two new pairs of pants for the babe, woohoo! The sweater pants I made from the sleeves of a couple of thrifted sweaters. This is a great tutorial on how to make them. The first pair I simply made a casing for the elastic from the bottom band of the sweater. The second pair I used some rib knit I had in my stash to make a waist band. Not sure which I like better, I'll have to see how each stays put on the babe before I vote on which is better. I have NO idea what I'm going to make tonight and that's kind of exciting!

Monday, September 20, 2010

New Prints in the Shop

All of these new prints are now in the shop! More goodies tomorrow.

In other news, over the weekend we made a trip to the animal shelter and fell in love with this used kitty, all 20 pounds of him. He came home with us and has settled in like he's always been here. I have a feeling he's going to be a wonderful studio companion and you'll be hearing lots more about him.

Kids Clothes Week Challenge

I've been so very out of the loop the last few weeks and even months that this completely snuck up on me. The super wonderful blog Elsie Marley is once again hosting a Kids Clothes Week Challenge. This time for fall and winter clothing. It's really simple, you just spend one hour each night for a week sewing something for your kid or kids. It's really amazing how much you can get done in a week by just carving out that time. And since I haven't been able to sew anything for my own munchkins in so long I'm really looking forward to this. I didn't have time to really make a plan for what I want to accomplish but I've got lots of fabric and lots of patterns in my stash already. I'll just start sewing and see what happens! I'll share what I come up with as I go along. Also, keep checking the Elsie Marley blog all week, she's doing a giveaway everyday to celebrate. Annnnnd there just might be a little June Craft giveaway on her blog later this week too! She was so kind as to ask if I'd be would like to participate by donating an item and of course I was more than happy too! More on that as the week progresses. That's it for me for now, I'm hoping to be back later today with a few things for the shop.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Thanks Renegade for the Memories

It's really hard to put into words how awesome last weekend was. It was a magical weekend. Yes, it was exhausting and so much work but in the end it was a blast! The weather (after a little rain Saturday morning) was absolutely beautiful and the people came out to the fair in droves. I mean, it was PACKED the entire weekend. And to top it all off I got to spend the entire weekend with my two bestest Chicago buds. They were amazing and took care of me with coolers packed full of goodies, put knitting into my nervous hands, bought me sangria and made me laugh all weekend. I really don't know what I would have done without them. I couldn't ask for better friends or better booth helpers. It was like we were on a camping trip all weekend! And all the awesome customers I got to meet, everyone was so super nice. I really wish I had gotten more pictures of the entire fair and some of the really incredible booths. It was so busy though I just didn't have time. All-in-all though it was worth every minute and I'd do it again in a heartbeat.

I've spent this week re-cooperating and catching up on full-time job work. I had planned on getting the Etsy shop updated with new prints but not sure that's going to happen. Maybe tomorrow, or maybe next week early. I promise it'll happen soon though!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

September Background

I hope you'll forgive the lateness of this background. The past month has literally flown by, the days seeming like hours and the hours like minutes. The culmination of months of hard work is finally this weekend and I couldn't be more excited! And a little relieved that it'll be over soon. I plan on taking a little break from making things after it's all over to focus on some personal projects... But don't worry, any leftover inventory will be stocked in the Etsy shop next week and oh, there's some wonderful new things!

One new thing that will debut this weekend at Renegade is a 2011 calendar print. It's a limited edition digital print in a larger 11x14 size. It's printed on a beautiful french Speckletone paper and I just love it. There are two colors to choose from and next week these will hit the Etsy shop as well. So, this months desktop background is inspired by that calendar and there are also two colors to choose from! I also omitted the calendar this month since it's so late in the month. What do you think? Do you prefer your backgrounds with the calendar or just the background? As always click the size you need to download the file. Enjoy!

Blue Version

Red Version

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Renegade Sneak Peek

Hi all and Happy September! August went so fast, I can't believe it's already turning into fall and Renegade is literally just around the corner. I've been slaving away in my little craft corner of the world every night after work but I thought I would give myself a brief respite and share a few sneak peeks with you.

I was super honored to be asked to participate in a little gallery show that the awesome folks at Renegade are putting together. The show is the "Hoot Show" and they tasked some super amazing artists with creating a unique owl themed piece to showcase. This is also a contest, the winner gets their booth fee refunded, woo hoo!

I sent my submission off yesterday and drat I didn't take a photo of it before it got packed up. The piece that will be displayed in the Spotlight Gallery is a super kitschy wall hanging that I made based on this design. I loved the way it turned out and I hope all you Chicago folks will stop into the Renegade Gallery and check it out! I'm super excited to see all of the other entries next weekend. I also printed up a super limited edition of the design on paper that will be available for purchase in my Renegade booth.

And here's a few other little designs that I've been working on that will also have their debut next weekend. Now... back to work!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

1st Grade

I can't quite believe it but today was the first day of 1st grade for my big girl. The summer went by much too fast but I have to say it was by far one of the most fun in recent memory. We kept incredibly busy and soaked up every moment of sunshine that we could.

I've never seen a little girl so incredibly excited to go back to school. She loved her summer but I think was very ready to return to a less hectic pace and "normal" routine. I had hoped to finish sewing a back to school dress for her but all I managed was to finish her pretty new backpack.

I used this awesome pattern by Made by Rae here. The original pattern is for a toddler sized backpack and was just too stinking cute that I had to try to adjust it to fit a bigger kid. As suggested I used a heavier weight canvas that I ordered from Superbuzzy.com. Miss Brodi herself picked it out and I love it, it's so cute. I chose the contrasting blue piping to really make the colors pop. I enlarged the pattern by 130% and that seems to be the perfect size for an older kid, plenty big enough for a few 8.5x11 folders and a few books. Because it's bigger it's not quite at sturdy as the smaller version and looks a little more droopy. If I were to do it again I may add a lining to add a little more stability, although I think it looks great as is! If you make this backpack in a larger size you'll need slightly more than the 1/2 yard suggested in the original pattern and two packages of pipping instead of one. I think I spent a little more to make this than actually buying one but she's got a unique bag that no one else will have and she was pretty proud of that! It's definitely a more advanced pattern but it was a lot of fun to make. I'm sure I'll be making many more from this pattern in all sorts of sizes! I think I'd like to try to figure out how to add a front pocket in the future....

I love these pictures of my girl. I'm finding this age incredibly challenging. She's willful, obstinate and so opinionated. There are so, so many frustrating moments when I just have to stop and breathe deeply to calm my nerves. But looking at these photos I'm reminded of the sweet moments, of how incredibly funny and full of life she is. Happy 1st grade sweets!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Bad Blogger

I've been such a bad blogger as of late. I've been involved in several major projects with my full-time job that has kept me working around the clock for the last few weeks. The last of these crazy big projects will be presented tomorrow which will be a HUGE load off my shoulders. In what little down time I've had I've been sewing like a mad woman. I'll try to photograph some of the things to share with you next week. I'm so excited for the end of the week to arrive because I get to take my very first little vacation of the year! I'll be heading here for a long weekend...

Yup, smack dab in the middle of nowhere. And you'd never guess it but it's home to one of the biggest vintage car shows around. The Symco Shakedown. My rockabilly Mr. will be slapping his bass as one of the many entertainers for the show. All of the girls are tagging along to float in the river, sit around a campfire eating s'mores and laugh with great friends. The kids are staying home with Grandma so it promises to be an amazingly relaxing weekend. So, I'll be scarce until next week sometime. I hope you all have a great, great weekend!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

August Desktop Calendar

Sorry this is a little late my friends! August is shaping up to be a very hectic yet fun month. No matter how much I'll miss it, it feels good to have my little shop closed for a bit. Mostly because I'm so excited to finally get some of the new things done I've been wanting to do. There's also lots of back-to-school sewing for my gong to be 1st grader that I've got to do. Hopefully I'll be able to share little sneak peeks of all of the projects I've got going on this month. In the meantime, I hope you enjoy this new background!

*Edit: I've fixed the problem with the files so if you were having trouble installing the background re-download it. Thanks so much to everyone who kindly brought the issue to my attention!!

**Edit: Geesh Kayanna, get your stuff together! Ok really, I've fixed the files so re-download if you were having issues. I'm so sorry for the screw-ups today. Not sure where my head is at!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010


I really don't know how it's possible but my baby girl turned one yesterday! It seems like only weeks since we brought her home from the hospital and at the same time it feels like she's always been a part of our family. None of use could imagine life without her. She's got the most contagious smile that quite literally lights up every room she's in. She's always so happy and has everyone wrapped around her tiny little finger. I tried to get some good pics of her special day but the above was the best one out of the bunch. She's a quick little wiggle worm and getting a picture of her lately is next to impossible. Most of them turned out like this...

Maybe we'll try again when she's sleepy!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Vintage Patterns

I was always scared of sewing from vintage patterns. I think I had this perception that they would be like vintage knitting patterns and be completely impossible to understand and execute. Many modern patterns (like the great Oliver + S ones) share tips and tricks allowing you to learn along the way. This isn't the case with vintage patterns. So, it really helps to have some sewing knowledge before heading into a vintage pattern project because back then most women did know how to sew and there are a lot of assumptions made. That's really the only tricky part. Make sure to read through all the directions before starting so you can look up any techniques that aren't familiar. I've had a few successes lately with some vintage patterns so I've been snatching them up left and right to add to my collection. Here's a few that I've recently gotten my paws on. I'm so excited to sew some of these up! (There's even one for my rockabilly mister!)