Thursday, April 28, 2011

Sunshine on my shoulders...a strapless top for me!

Whoopee! I have been wanting to do this for two years now... I finally entered a top into the Spring Top Sewalong at Made by Rae.  You can enter up to three tops; I think I will do at least one more, because this one is really cute though!  (If I do say so myself! ;)

I cropped my head out of the pic because I don't like my hair today and I have minimal makeup on.  You know how that is.
It's the "Strapless Belted Tunic" from One Yard Wonders.  I cannot get over how much I love this fabric for this top! The pattern is so flowy and wavy; it reminds me of the beach.  I think I will make at least one more, but honestly, I will have to make it just a smidgen bigger, because unless I wear those exact jeans in the picture, the shirt doesn't really fit over my hips.  Maybe if it were knit fabric, that would be different.  But the cotton, even with the side slits (which look really cute too, forgot to get a pic of those!)... it's just a little snug.   

More pics!
I love that belt - cut the other way from the main top ("railroaded", I think?) and I think it looks really cool. 

See, though?  Snug.
 I saw this in the book, and normally I would pass on by.  But I wanted to branch out a little.  I've never been much of a "strapless" kind of gal.  Mainly because I NEVER KNOW WHAT TO WEAR UNDERNEATH!!!  There, I said it.  I do own a strapless bra, and it's fine for just standing there and taking a few pics (with the shirt on over top, ha ha), but I really don't care for it when I have to wear it for any length of time.  Not comfortable!  What am I missing?  I would so love to wear strapless tops, halter tops, etc.  But I never do, because of the whole bra issue.  Any help that ANY of you out there can give me would be...helpful

Anyway, I can still wear this top now because it goes great with a denim jacket or a shrug.  But when summer comes to my town (in western PA, that's like August or so), it will be just great to throw it on and go.

Tidy Mom
Craft Book Month at Craft Buds

Monday, April 25, 2011

Why I Sew

Sometimes, when I wear something that I've made, or carry a bag that I've sewn, I'll get this:

"I like your bag."  (Thanks!)  "Did you make that?"  (Yep!)  "Oh."  Accompanied by a "look me up and down" look.  And then something like, "I don't know how you do that" or "I could never do that" or "I don't have the patience for that" or something to that effect.

I think people often assume...well, I have no idea what they assume.  I think there's some head-scratching, wondering why I bother.  (Hey, when a project isn't going so well, I wonder that myself sometimes!)

It's not necessarily less expensive to sew.  Especially for a bargain shopper like me.  And if time = money, then it definitely is not cheaper.
Dang it!  I didn't have any more pink thread, either.  Thankfully, I just made it.  This is what was left.  WHEW! 
It certainly isn't less hassle.  I spend hours at that machine, often at night after the kids have gone to bed.  And sometimes I use my ding-dang seam ripper more than I use my machine.  Which irritates me to no end.
looks simple in the diagram, doesn't it?
mmm-hmm.  yep.  just like the diagram. 
My sewn items aren't of the finest quality...I don't have a serger, so my seams on the inside are a dead-giveaway that they have been....picture Nina Garcia from Project Runway squinting her eyes and saying: "home sewwwwn."  I mean, I'm proud of what I do, don't get me wrong, but I'm not winning any awards here.

Sewing is something that I can do.  Not everyone can - or wants to.  I enjoy it - sometimes I almost "crave" the feeling of putting pins in fabric and running it through the machine.  I know that sounds weird.  But it's calming, in a way.  Like knitting.  But with more broken needles.  ;)

Stephanie Pearl-McPhee (the Yarn Harlot) said somewhere (in a book, in her blog, I don't remember) that when she sees her kids playing in the snow, wearing mittens that she knitted, she feels like a good mom.  I think that about sums it up for me.

Linking up...
Making The Girl Creative

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Easter Morning

Happy Easter!  :)  Enjoy this day of dressing up the kids, getting together with family, and relaxing - hopefully around a nice big dinner.  It's just the four of us this year, so we'll be feasting on Easter Tacos.  (Haven't you ever heard of those?)

This day especially has meaning for me, as it's the day I celebrate the resurrection of my Savior, Jesus Christ.

Enjoy this video - one of my fave songs by Casting Crowns.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Good Friday

By His Wounds
Wes King
We did not esteem Him
We hid our faces from Him
As smitten of God
Surely our sins He wore
The griefs we bore fell upon Him
No stately form of majesty
That we would see Him lovely
Aquainted with grief
Surely His Father's will He did fulfill in dying

He was pierced for our transgressions
Forsaken of men
Cut off from the land of living
He knew no sin
And when like a lamb that was led to slaughter
He was silent
And by His wounds we are healed

All we like sheep have gone astray
And turned each one to his own way
Far from the fold
Surely our shepherd died and justified the many

He was pierced for our transgressions
Forsaken of men
Cut off from the land of living
He knew no sin
And when like a lamb that was led to slaughter
He was silent
And by His wounds we are healed

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

My husband: an intro

A trip across the state to visit my parents means a trip to the Christmas Tree Shoppe.

This will all make sense in a minute.

I live in a town where we don't even have a Target.  So you can see part of my problem here.  I came back with, among other things, a set of four coffee mugs.  Really cute, and only $1 each! 

As I unpacked them while talking to my husband (Mr. H), I said, "look!  I got us a set of pretty mugs!"  (bad grammar, I know.  I blame it on 13 years of living in western PA.)

To which he replied, "Oh goodie!  Did you get me another hole in the head, while you were at it?"

Silence.  But inside my mind raged a I laugh?  No, that would only be admitting defeat.  Do I use a snappy comeback?  No, can't think of one.  What do I say?  I don't know.  Is that funny, or am I mad?  I don't know...  The result?  I stood there like a deer in headlights. 

And then I burst into laughter.  Because....

He's kinda right. 

He should just be glad it's mugs and not shoes. 

Monday, April 18, 2011

Desk organizer: from "ewww" to "oooh!"

Yes, it's "Lovely Title Day" here at Pleased as Punch!

So, a while ago, I found some nice, sturdy magazine file boxes at Walmart on clearance for $1 each.  There were three left; I bought them all.  Just basic black, and they came as a desk set with some tacky, cheap pencil holders and envelope holders.  I really only wanted the magazine files.  I still intend to cover them with fabric or something, but haven't gotten around to it yet.  I was going to throw the superfluous items away, but it just pains me to throw things away that could potentially be useful, so they sat in my sewing room for a couple months, serving as an eyesore.  It was nice.

I told you they were ugly!
So, one thing you should know: I love Mod Podge.  And hot glue.  Except, I don't like burning myself on hot glue.  That hurts.


Come with me, if you will, on a photographical journey: from crappy to cute...

hot gluing the things together...that bag clip was pretty worthless, though it seemed like a good idea

much more functional (and sturdy) than just one

Since this is going to be sitting out in full view, I decided it was worth my Amy Butler paper.  I don't use this for just anything, you know!

do we really need an explanation for this?  I'm tracing.  With one of my cute pencils.

Love that Mod Podg-y smell.

It's good to leave a tiny little space around what you're decoupaging on...that way the edges get sealed.

measuring the inside.  That little ruler/gauge is one of my "most-used" items in sewing/crafts - love it!  So handy!
gluing to the inside, to be mod podged later.  Don't you love using nouns as verbs? 
almost finished, just waiting to get sealed

Dang, that's cute!

And there you have it!  A perfectly presentable pencil holder, cute enough to sit out in full view.
Let's review:

Linking up...

Keeping It Simple
BWS tips button

Transformation Thursday

Chic on a Shoestring Decorating