Saturday, June 25, 2011

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

sewing for the husband

it is the end of the term...i will have lots of odds and ends to show once they are all graded and returned to me!

for my last knits project, i made andrew a t-shirt.  it is his birthday this week and i like sewing for him when i can.

 also for my last photo project, i had to do a portrait.  i used andrew for obvious proximity reasons, and cause he's so cute of course.  we had tried to do a few the night before they were due (nothing quite like procrastination) but they didn't turn out.

so this man woke up with me at 6:00 am so we could get the "sweet light" and redo the portrait before my 9:00 am class.  

yes, this is what he looks like straight out of bed with no shower.

 in this one you can see the contrast thread and double needle.  if you look in a nice t-shirt (not a free giveaway type) from j. crew, etc. you will notice that they reinforce the shoulders and back collar with a piece of knit cut lengthwise, topstitched with a chainstitch (you need a coverstitch machine to do that stitch).  i echoed this technique with my stretch double needle.  since the fabric is so thin, the reinforcement was a must.

this is also the 1.5 month beard he's been growing.  it is almost time for it to go.... no comment on who's decision that is! ha ha.
 [it was pointed out to me that in this photo he has a big log about to stab him in the head. i choose to ignore this]

after this photoshoot we both had severe allergy attacks.  ha

the fabric i used was a tissue weight knit, which is really nice, soft and comfy, but kinda hard to sew with.  i used a double needle for all of the topstitching...but when i tested it on the fabric, the double needle was pinching the fabric layers together too much.  does that make any sense without a visual?

well if you've ever tried a double needle with super thin fabric before, you'd know what i mean.  so to remedy this problem, my teacher taught us a trick. using a pattern paper as a third layer stabilizes the stitch and helps it to lay flat and smooth.  after you finish, you just tear it out.  pretty tricky little maneuver if you ask me.

all in all, i think we're both happy with it. oh, when i get it back from school i'll have to get a close up of the tag i made with his initials embroidered..

Thursday, June 9, 2011

two things i don't live without.

my smartwater bottle.  i don't actually care about the brand.  i just love this tall, skinny, 34 oz bottle.  i use it for probably a month, and then get a new one.  it is actually probably more like every two months, but that sounds a little gross. 

i find that i drink so much more water when i have a bottle.  also, 
my husband kept stealing my water bottle.  so i got him his own.

now we have his & hers smartwater bottles.

and most importantly, my chapice chapstick.  it is this obscure little chapstick that i find exclusively (not really. it is an oral labs product. but it is not prevalent, i'd know). at my neighborhood kohler's grocery store.  

my husband hates it. but it's one thing i won't budge on.  it is the smoothest, soothing-est feel for me.
i feel calm when i just put it on.  i love these little tiny chapsticks.  i think i am going to have to buy one of those whole plastic fishbowl-looking bowls at the grocery store checkout full of the light blue chapice chapsticks before i move to texas.  

don't mess around with the fruit flavored other colors.  it's only light blue for me.

side note. i just realized this pictured is not actually the 34 oz bottle, but the smaller model.  currently i'm using the 34, which i prefer.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011


my aqueous media final project will be based on these lovelies 
i found in a library book on figure construction 
by alon bement published in the 1920's:

i am excited. stay tuned.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011


my parents and i went in together on a graduation gift for my husband, andrew (who just graduated with his masters in accountancy!)  we got him a camera--which i'll have to feature in another post.  but here's how i wrapped it.  i used the pictureline bag it came in to wrap the lens filter in.  

my dad said he thought it was too obvious...ha ha. i liked it.

Monday, June 6, 2011

projects, plans, promise

projects projects projects.
they are piling up. 
some are for school and some are not.
 (these will not get done immediately because my husband outlawed me from working on non-school projects until the term is over. good advice, because i have been getting so stressed out lately).

here it goes, random thoughts, swatches, etc.

for my next swimsuit project for school,  i'm thinking of doing something pieced like this: 
via anthropolgie
out of these three swimsuit knits:
the stretchy lace one is actually not a swimsuit knit, just a regular knit.  
i'm hoping i can underline it with white swimsuit knit and no one would be the wiser.

i am working on a swimsuit quite a bit like this, only a tankini:
via shabby apple
out of this fabric 
blogged about, and see a bigger swatch here

it is almost done.  just need to finish the straps and tie.
and the bottoms.

i'm doing a blouse, just for fun, like this:
 this pattern is from the 70's..via my grandma.  i've already made a dress out of it.
i'll post another time.

i'm doing it out of this fabric.  i only had one yard, so i'm not sure if this will turn out completely.
i'm really fudging it. 

next up...for my knits class, i'm making this dress. 

it is actually coming along a little wobbly. i'm not sure if i'll even like it ha ha.
i made a size small, and it would still fit me if i gained 100 lbs. 

don't get me wrong, i'm all for style ease, but this just might be excessive.

anyway, here it is:

and here is the fabric i'm using for it:
it is a navy blue knit (it looks darker than it really is here)
and a pleasant contrasting lilac floral knit.

it's on the inside of the pockets and is used for the drawstring.

i bought this pattern to make this skirt (blogged about here)
via madewell

 [i have yet to buy the fabric. because i haven't found that perfect shade of dated light denim yet. but don't worry, i'll track some down.]

and lastly,

this is the fabric for the cardigan i talked about in this post

and this is the fabric i used for the first, most basic swimsuit i made in class.
i got an A!
i will post a picture when i get it back from school.

Sunday, June 5, 2011


for my aqueous media class (watercolor. but doesn't aqueous media sound fancy and distinguished?)
i was assigned a sketchbook project of 54 small works.

our teacher gave us lots of freedom. with basically one rule: the sketchbook had to have a cohesive concept.

mine is memories.  all of my sketches are blind contour drawings of memories throughout my life.

here are five of my favorites. some of the other ones didn't turn out so well. a lot of them are still unfinished.

they are distorted, funny, sloppy, and i like them.

it's easy to procrastinate.  it's like a little dance. you tiptoe around the thing you need to do. you do anything but the thing you need to do. you become a master at avoiding.

sometimes i'm like that about blogging.  i want to be a blogger, but at times i avoid it.  for weeks, for months.

i made myself a little rule.  no looking at my google reader until i have posted.  so many times, this means i don't look at my google reader for a couple of days.  sometimes it means i do a blog post but then don't have time to look at other blogs for a few more days.  but it is working. it helps me avoid procrastinating.


he makes the bed.
she makes the meals.

she has a sewing machine.
he has a work out routine.

he has a protein shake, oatmeal, and grape nuts each morning.
she never knows what she'll have for breakfast.

he does laundry and then hangs it up immediately.
she does laundry and then gets dressed from the baskets for weeks.

she loves thrift and antique stores.
he needs to wash his hands.

she drags him to fabric stores.
he waits in the car.

she sits on the floor to do projects
he only uses a desk

he enjoys the chance to do a job interview
he loves to meet new people

she is intimidated by interviews
she doesn't like to be alone

we try to dance a little each day

we work hard.

we relax at night

we can't wait to have our own place again

Saturday, June 4, 2011

in the home

a few days ago i posted about my pride and joy (a vintage industrial cart i bought at an antique store).  i thought i'd share a few photos that give an idea of how i'd use the cart in my house/apartment someday.

as a kitchen island:
apartment therapy via pinterest

via pinterest

as shelves/linen closet on wheels:
via pinterest (no link)
but i think it looks like pottery barn 

or other kitchen storage:
via remodelista
(this is kinda an island too but you could see how it could be shelving)

see, my little cart has so much potential!

here it is, in case you missed it.

Friday, June 3, 2011

a makeover so small its more of a "look what i found" post

a few weeks ago i found this wooden shoe form at the thrift store for $1.  i thought it was so funny that the previous owner had tied a ribbon and hot-glued fake flowers to it. i think the picture actually flatters this handiwork, it doesn't look all that bad here.  but trust me, it meant to be just wasn't.  in fact, i pictured the sweetest old granny had made it.

so i gave this old shoe form a new lease on life.


"after".  i just pulled everything off a tied a little string on. clean and simple.

p.s. this little wooden foot already made an appearance in my japanese tape post.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

laptop case

disclaimer: sorry, the pictures are terrible.

 i made this laptop case for a friend's birthday.  it was pretty easy and really fun to pick fabrics to put together.  
 detail of the stitching and lace
 i was kinda inspired by those envelopes that have the closures with two circles that you wind the string through (do those have a name?) and did the same with buttons.
 these are my signature buttons. i love them
 the front
action shot with the laptop in it.  (it fits i was just showing the laptop going in).  now i need to make one for myself!

and i really do need one, i know from experience.  a couple semesters ago i was working in the university preschool. all of the student-teachers had to do a literacy activity where you read the kids a book and then they did an activity that related to the book.  so i read "the very hungry caterpillar" and then we made a lifecycle of a caterpillar on a long strip of paper, starting as an egg...yada yada.  the "chrysalis" stage was a big pasta shell that they glued down.  anyway, i had to make one as a demo, and then i shoved the whole paper in my backpack later on to take home.  the pasta shell cracked into a ton of little pieces and i didn't really think about it to vacuum out my backpack.  a little while later i noticed my disc drive was making really funny noises and then found a piece of that cracked pasta shell in my disc drive! needless to say it's never worked since.  a little laptop case could have saved me the trouble.

gosh, aren't you glad you read that story?

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

japanese washi tape

i feel like i finally joined the world of design when i bought my first rolls of
this colorful/patterned washi tape is in projects all over blogland.  and if you ask me, so hasn't gotten old.  i love it!  i bought mine from the etsy seller kimamaya and got to choose 10 rolls:

if it hasn't been already, i'm sure you'll see this tape in future projects.  (although it is kinda hard to make myself use it when i just want to hoard it.)

[photo credit: yours truly]