Friday, November 16, 2012

Old Suitcases Turned Night Stand

This is an example of necessity being the mother of invention. I've had this pile of old suitcases that I use for storage, but no where to store the suitcases that are storing things. My typewriter is in the top, my yarn and knitting/crochet needles are in the next one down, the third one is actually for packing and the bottom holds my seasonal clothes. And, lo and behold, when stacked like this it's the perfect height for me to reach my alarm clock with minimal stretching!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Seeing My Kitchen Through a New Lense

Since I've had my camera I've been so busy I never really got to get to know the settings. Here's some experimentation... Scenes from my kitchen.

Recycled Sweater Dress

The weather has decided to let it be November. All the leaves have been piled and are waiting to be picked up by the efficient worker-bee crew of city employees, the trees are letting in more sun than ever and my living room is full of bright golden sunshine.
But the floors are still cold.
I've baked bread, made cookies, sipped coffee, and the room is still a little drafty. AND, it is one of my biggest pet peaves when I see children that are not dressed for the weather! As if just because they're small they somehow feel less wind.
So I'm always on the hunt for more ways to keep my baby warm. Enter recycled sweaters.
I traced one of London's sundresses while lining up the necklines, leaving a little room for seams, and snipped. It was just long enough that she couldn't climb on a chair so I turned it inside out and piched about three inches at a drop waist line and stitched it up. So depending on the height of the child you could leave it sleek and waist-less, or give it a pinch.
Also, as she wore it the arm edges unraveled a bit so I'll probably have to stitch a binding over the raw-ness someday. Someday.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Recycled Jeans - Tote Bags & Backpack (includes chocolate)

Being almost religiously cheap has it's advantages. Like the saved money... But it also has it's disadvantages. Like the piles. Piles of things that might come in handy. I have seen many cautionary tales lived out on this subject, but I couldn't part with the pile of jeans that my eleven year old boy had blown out the knees on without wearing out another inch of. Still a mystery...
But I've found that if you cut off the legs below the knee (gruesome no matter how you say it!), take out the middle seam and sew them at the raw edges you have a tube the perfect size for a tote bag! Add a bottom, handles and some pockets and you have a rugged grocery bag. Or you could put a bar of really yummy chocolate in the pocket and make a gift out of it!
So, you know that feeling of serenity that comes after creating something that you know you will wear, use, or enjoy gazing at hundreds of times from here on. I know you do. I had that feeling when I first made these earrings over three years ago. They're made from paper that my Mom had used to write me a card. Then, about two years ago, they broke because I'd worn them at least five times a week. Last week, two years, one baby, and many tries later, I fixed them! And I had that same feeling all over again. Aaaaah...

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Maybe it was being stranded at home today (purse, keys, phone, all locked in the car...); maybe it's my new feel of freedom of having a bike to take the trail to downtown...
Either way, I have had a drawing itch that could bald a sloth.
Ok, maybe that's not the best analogy, but you know...
No? Oh.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

This is just an irresistable photo of London in her new bike helmet...
We've been trying to find chairs to expand the seating capacity of our living room.
We're also super cheap!
I found this great orange vinyl armchair from the sixties (it's much better in person, trust me...), but it was three hundred dollars. So I looked at new armchairs... They were three hundred dollars!

So I found two chairs at this barn of an antique shop that had hideous fabric over cushions that were in pretty good shape. Thirty dollars for two, twenty dollars for the fancy fabric, and two bolts of colored canvas that I got from Mom.. "New" chairs, $50.

I was very inspired by a visit to Sarah Carriers. She wraps bittersweet around her bannisters, makes it into wreaths, hangs it form the ceiling, and twists twinkle lights into it at every possible opportunity.

This is my take on that, as a chandelier over our table. Thanks, Sarah!

Friday, July 20, 2012

Handmade Cards

My first addition will be the cards I've been working on. We have three weddings this summer between our two congregations, so there have been many showers, "parties", open houses, get togethers... And then, of course, the weddings! In between it all we're also having an elementary school graduation party, so we've been making invitations, as well.

If you have an iota of creativity, or even blatent plagarism ability, you should be able to get by with never ever buying a card again. They are so expencive and to buy card stock, fun paper, and a glue pen is about the price of three cards! And it's a great zen pass-time...

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Welcome to the beginning of an experiment.

I've started a blog to catalog my creations from baking to card making to jewelry to upholstery.

I have no misconceptions that this will be popular in any way or turn into a money-making experiment, I would just like to keep a record of my ideas in a place other than my memory.