Monday, January 25, 2010

More baby stuff

The rest of the baby things for my cousin...pretty cute if I do say so myself! 

Bibs & burp cloths - I love this gender-neutral giraffe flannel!  I love it so much, in fact, that I have used it a lot, and didn't have enough left to do 2 whole bibs AND burp cloths out of it, so I did the bibs with just a little applique and bias binding.  The bibs are made out of a super-soft bath towel - pretty smart huh?  Cheaper than the terry cloth or chenille at the fabric store, and much nicer and softer.  I can't believe how tiny the neck openings are - I love little babies!!!  We sat behind a little 3-week old newborn in church yesterday.  I elbowed Mr. H...he just looked at me and said, "No."  Can't blame me for trying.  ;)

Improved hats - the bottoms don't flare out as much, and I got rid of the girly-looking ties at the top.  I can't believe all it took was a ball-point needle that, to me, looks exactly like a regular needle.  Amazing.  You learn something new every day!

All wrapped up.  Cute stuff!!!  I hope she likes it. 

Sunday, January 17, 2010

sewing room/cabinet redo

Some before & after pics of my "sewing room" (sunroom/computer room/christmas tree room/off-limits-to-kids-but-they-still-go-in-there-room/whatever else we can use it for room)

And let me preface this by's still not "perfect," but it's a lot better than it was!!!  I think I'm going to have to wait till a kid moves out, or we move into a different house, for my sewing room to be the way I want it - all to myself.  ;)  BUT...I'm still happy with my new and improved space!  

Before: A Ghastly Mess

Fabric - oh my goodness.  How did I deal with this?  All stored in baskets, overflowing...some still in bags...burying my little side-table.  I'm getting stressed just looking at it!

The view from my chair.  Oh, joy.

And then I look to my right...there's all my other sewing stuff.  Thread, scissors, pins, etc.  On the radiator, next to the clock that doesn't work.  Marvelous!  It looked really nice from the road, too!

More radiator storage.  That looks like some scrapbooking stuff...hmm, a stapler...maybe some jewelry stuff?

Yoy and double yoy.  Do you like my Tinkertoy ribbon spool-holding contraptions, though?  I thought that was pretty clever!

We find a million uses for all the USPS mailing boxes left over from the ebay we have some more scrapbooking stuff.  

SO, as you can see, we had a problem.  Then one day, Mr. H., in all his resourceful brilliance (and I am NOT saying that sarcastically, I really mean it!) said, "hey, what about that red cabinet that your parents gave us that's been in the basement forever?"  Hmmm, the red cabinet...that thing was in my parents' house when I was my kids' age...let me think on it....that could be a good idea!

Just a couple pics...the first one was in its original state, with about 6 years worth of dust on it
The cabinet was stained red - that 80's colonial red color - such nostalgia!  But it all had to go.

First, I did the inside in my all-time favorite off-white color, from Wal-mart of all places!  It's Color Place "Antique Lace" and it is the most delicious latte-foam creamy off-white I have ever found.  It's in my kitchen, soon to be in my sunroom, and on various accents throughout the house.  I love, love, love it. 

Then I did the outside in Color Place "India Ink" - and I used the enamel finish because I wanted the glossiest black possible.  I definitely should have primed it first, though, because it took 3 or 4 coats.  Oh well.  OH and also, the lighting in our basement is like, a light bulb, which I swear makes it seem even darker down there than if the light was just off.  I used a flashlight the whole time I painted this. It was such a pain, and when I got the cabinet upstairs I saw some fairly minor areas that were in need of a touch-up.  But at that point I just wanted to get it in the room, so the touch-ups will have to wait! 

So here it is in all its glory...I forgot to take pics of it just by itself...oh well!

I'm loving the new hardware!  We had some drawer pulls left over from something else, so it was nice that I didn't have to spend any money on that...I also love the combo of black and cream...mmm, yummy...the fabric on top is just waiting for baskets.  At the moment every basket in my house is spoken for so I'm keeping an eye out for a good sale somewhere.

Here is how my whole sewing room has been affected (yeah!)...

scrapbook paper storage

fabric in drawers - ahhh.  feels good.

misc crafty stuff - still not ideal, but better.  What's that plastic fork doing on the floor?

so much better!

You may notice that there is no TABLE on which to sew...we got rid of the big chest that was in there, it was killing my back anyway.   So for now I just take my machine out to the kitchen table, but I'm definitely in the market for a table or desk to live in my sewing room permanently.  Small price to pay for now, though, dragging it out to the kitchen.  The only thing I don't like is having to clean everything up when I'm done!

Oh, and pay no attention to the color of my walls or the upholstery on that chair...they are in for a change pretty soon too.  ;)

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Men aren't the only ones who have trouble asking for directions

Last week I made a couple of AWANA bags for a friend's boys.  I was pleased as punch at the way they turned out!  (Oh, BTW, that's how my blog got its name...I say that all the time...)  I was told that Judah likes bugs, and Joel likes cars (as in, Disney Pixar cars)...pretty cute!

You should see my ironing board, though.  ACK!  It didn't quite survive.  Until I can get to the store to buy another cover, we're using a tea towel on it to iron clothes.  Greg just shook his head and laughed when I sheepishly told him.  YOU SEE, it was my first time using heat-n-bond.  I made a fabulous disaster of my ironing board, and all the individual letters first, and THEN read the directions.  It was mostly all salvageable, but talk about creating extra, tedious work for myself!  And then, even after I read the directions, I blatantly ignored the part where it said, "Do not sew."  I thought, HA.  Of course I'm going to sew through this.  My machine is awesome, it can handle it.  Well after I got through the first letter of Joel's name, it became "suddenly clear" why the directions said not to try to sew through that glue-y stuff.  But I was already 1/4 of the way into it, there was no turning back!  I was doomed to have to finish his name the way I did - thread breaking about every inch and a half and all - argh.  What I learned was, the glue builds up on the needle, and wears the thread after about the second letter, I learned to sew an inch, then scrape the glue off the needle, sew an inch, scrape, sew an inch, scrape..............I was never so happy to sew one glorious last stitch in all my life.  I'll just file this little experience away for the next time I'm tempted to plow ahead without reading the directions first!!!

Thursday, January 14, 2010


Ha ha, not cousin Brooke is having twins - yay! - and these are her first babies.  I'm SO disappointed that I won't be able to go to her shower at the end of this month.  They don't know the gender(s), so that makes it kinda fun to find cute, neutral things to give.  Here are some things I'm making and sending to my mom, to take to the shower for me:

Little snuggly critters - a chicken and a monkey!   I found this super-soft knit on clearance for $1/yd.  Jackpot!!!  These turned out so cute.  I think I'm in love!

Reversible newborn hat - glad I only made one so needs tweaking.  A couple of issues: #1, it definitely looks girly with the ties at the top.  #2, the bottom got all flared out when I topstitched it.  I've never really worked with knit before; apparently this is what it does.  I posted this on one the Sew Mama, Sew forum and got some help I have a legitimate excuse to go back to the candy store Jo-Ann's and get the proper needle for this.  That, and using stabilizer, and hopefully it'll turn out a little better!  And I'm going to ditch the ties at the top, however adorable they may be.  I'm sure Pat (daddy to be) wouldn't be thrilled to put this on his boys - if they turn out to be boys...I remember Greg giving me guff for sticking a paci with a little bit of pink on it, in Nolan's mouth as an infant...

ANYWAY, more to come...some bibs & burp cloths, and little baby booties...and if I have time and get really crazy, some fabric balls with bells in them.  We shall see.  I have this adorable flannel...I'll post more as I do more!  And hopefully I can get this hat thing worked out.  Until then...!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Christmas 09 gifts!

Hi and welcome to my "crafty" blog!  It may or may not last; we'll see.  I have trouble enough keeping my regular one updated.  But I wanted a place where I could post JUST about my projects and stuff.  SO, I thought I'd do my first post about the Christmas gifts I made for my that it's over there should be no surprises.  ;)

For my sister:
This was going to be a set of pillows, but the first one went terribly wrong.  It was beautiful in my imagination; it really just didn't translate well.  You know when your own husband makes a face and says that he wouldn't want it in HIS house, it's bad!!!  So I did this one (different design), which I totally love.  And I think it's very "her." 

For my mom:

bird silhouettes on silver-y chargers.  My mom has birds all over her house; they'll have lots of friends!  These are fun to do if you like doing tedious cutting and getting high off of Mod Podge.  ;)

For my dad:

The coolest thing ever.  It's known as the "photo star" at our house.  Totally fun to do, and totally unique.  I found a pack of Amy Butler scrapbook paper that I fell in love with, and used it on this.  My sister & I pooled our family pics and shared them for photo gifts this year - it worked out great.  I really need to make one of these for our house.  I'm not a "country" person; I don't wish to have a barn star on my house like the rest of the world; that's really not my style...but I LOVE this photo star!!! 

For my two adorable nieces:

"Cuddle Blankets" - a huge hit.  I tried my hand at embroidery and I thought it turned out way better than I expected.  I think my years of cross-stitch really helped.  It felt the same, except without requiring all that concentration, which is great because after 2 kids, I pretty much have lost my ability to concentrate anymore.  It is very relaxing for me; I think I will be doing lots more of it this year.

I had grand aspirations of making handmade gifts for EVERYONE on my list...didn't happen.  There are a few more that I'm not going to post because, believe it or not, we still haven't done the exchange with the in-laws yet.  That happens sometimes when you live 9 hours apart and it snows for 2 weeks solid.

Well if you found my blog, enjoy, and please let me know you're here!!!