Tuesday, November 07, 2006
The process really is as easy as the tutorial makes it seem. I made two pincushions in one night. The green and brown pincushion went to Karyn in Austraila. I hope she is enjoying it. I am keeping the currently buttonless light green one for myself.
As I was making these, I realized that I have a very limited button collection. I am currently searching for more unique buttons. If you have an idea, please leave a comment. My buttonless flowers would be forever grateful.
Sunday, November 05, 2006
Sunday, October 29, 2006
I am such a paper hoarder. According to dictionary.com:
hoard (noun): 1. a supply or accumulation that is hidden or carefully guarded for preservation, future use, etc.: a vast hoard of silver.
Haha! My "silver" is fabric and paper. The definition describes my paper and fabric supply/buying habits to the T. However, I tend to use the fabric up much more quickly than I use the paper.
This year, like last, I am going to make little notecard sets to give as presents around the holidays. Theoretically, this should decrease the hoard...just as long as I don't buy more in the meantime. How do you decrease your stash of "silver"?
Monday, October 16, 2006
I loved Art class so much that I signed up for Art II during my senior year. My new teacher really inspired me and believed in me. Halfway through the year, she invited me on a special field trip to the Museum of Women in Arts in Washington, DC. Every art teacher in the county was allowed to invite 2 of their best female students. My art teacher chose me!
These photos are some of the art pieces I sent to my partners for Moki's letter swap. I learned the tempera resist technique during my high school art career and really enjoyed the process. The idea for these pieces came to me one morning. Funny how my greatest ideas come to me right before or after sleep. I really must start keeping a pen and paper on my nightstand! I hadn't done this type of painting since high school and was worried about how it would turn out. When I washed the ink away, I was filled with awe and surprise when the final piece starting revealing itself to me.
I'm really happy with how the pieces turned out and I hope my swap recipients enjoy them. I really look forward to having time soon to do more of these.
In case you're wondering, I've never regretted dropping Latin for Art, but I do regret not taking art in college.
Monday, October 02, 2006
As I was walking home the other day I thought to myself, "Oh, it would be so nice to have a package today". I then immediately thought that I really shouldn't get my hopes too high. But when I got home, I discovered that I had three packages waiting for me to open!
My first package was another initial from Moki's letter swap. Isn't it cute! Leta made this for me and I am so pleased with it. I have the perfect spot for it on my shelf in my "studio" (aka, dining room corner). You should check out all the other beautiful things Leta makes on her blog. I especially love her cards.
The next package was a quilted letter from Jackie. She blogs about it here, but it is so much more stunning in person. She got the inspiration from a French alphabet song. The funny thing is that one of my favorite songs is called "Soleil" by Badly Drwan Boy so this quilted applique is perfect for me. Thank you Jackie!
I apologize for the poor lighted pictures in this post. I haven't been home much in the daylight. Later this week I will share with you the other package as well as a new craft obsession I feel coming on. Have a great day.
Not only did Raesha send a beautiful painted initial "S" complete with a charm, she also included lots of goodies: bias tape, a vintage embroidery design (which I have just the use for!), handmade travel tissue holder (it is beginning to be sniffly nose weather afterall), and cute stickers with the letter S. I hope I didn't leave anything out. Anyhow, thanks for the wonderful package, Raesha. You really made my day.
Oh but wait, there's more. You see, each person in the swap sent out five letters so that each person would receive five letters. I recieved a few more letters today but I don't have time to post now. Let me just say that I feel so spoiled! I can definitely feel a swap addiction forming.
Now back to studying. Goodnight.
Tuesday, September 26, 2006
In between juggling school and work, my list of crafting to do’s continues to grow. Last week I completed seven bridesmaids bags for a soon to be bride. The bride to be picked out a different fabric for each girl and was genuinely happy with how they turned out. I really put a lot of work into these babies, making sure to pay attention to all the details. I was pleased they were so well received. (You can see more of the bags at flickr.)
With this commission order out of the way, there are so many things I want to try for myself now. Creative Little Daisy posted a similar a thought recently and I couldn’t agree more with how she is feeling. Especially now that my time is limited I am feeling the need to say ‘no’ more often to outside requests so that I can say ‘yes’ more often to my own little creative endeavors. I create things because I want to, and the more I have to, the less creative energy I have.
With that said, I have a bunch of projects in the works that I am very excited about: Moki’s letter swap and stamp swap, a new fall bag (or two!), and redecorating my living room (currently in progress) and bedroom. I promise to try harder to blog more often about these (and other) projects.
Saturday, September 09, 2006
Early into my run this morning I saw a sign for a neighborhood garage sale. Seeing all the beautiful things that craft bloggers have scored from garage sales and thrift shops, I decided on my way back from my run to stop by and see what kind of goodies I could find.
At one stand I found this vintage 1968 McCall's Sewing Book. I've been trying to increase my severely lacking craft book collection and was really excited to find this. The book is in pretty good condition. It mainly gives instructions on how to sew clothes. I don't currently sew any clothes but I know that someday in the (near?) future I plan to and think this will be a good reference to have on hand.
Tucked into the front cover of the book was this hip vintage sewing pattern.
I like the shirt style, so maybe I'll try out this pattern next summer. I'm thinking the shirt would look great with an Amy Butler style fabric.
I also found this wonderful little 1973 PlantCraft book. I don't have much of a green thumb. Somehow I have inhereted/been given/given refuge to a few left behind plants over the years. Until I got cats, the plants managed to somehow stay alive. The cats killed two plants (did you know cats enjoy eating spider plants?). Now I have two large plants left. I'm not saying that I'm a terrible plant owner, I just tend to forget more often than remember to water the plants. Also, I'm not sure that I give the plants the best environment to thrive. Our sunniest room in the apartment is also the smallest, so the plants would crowd the place if we gave them shelter there. I hope that this book will give me some good tips on how to be a better plant owner.
However, truth be told, I am more excited about the fun illustrations that adorn the inside pages. Check out these funky snails!
Sunday, September 03, 2006
I'm working on a commission order for seven bridesmaids bags. The bride picked out fabric to suit the individual tastes of each of her bridesmaids. What a fabulous idea! It's been a while since I've sewn any bags. Before the summer I was cranking them out every other day. Summer classes, working, and training for the triathlon really took away any time to be creative. It feels good to be sewing again.
Another work in progress is a little space to call my own. Since we have never used the dining area for its intended purpose of dining, I have decided to convert the space into my own studio. When you live in an apartment in the city, you really don't have a lot of space to work with. Peter and I are lucky to even have a dining area. We both agree that the space will be much more useful as a studio rather than a dining room. I'm trying to make the space more cozy than it is currently without putting a lot of work into it (we rent). Stay tuned for updates.
Off to Joann now for some much needed, and some not so needed, supplies!
Tuesday, August 22, 2006
Saturday, August 19, 2006
Pictures and stories will follow soon.
Thursday, August 17, 2006
A wristlet in black fabric with embroidered white flowers and leaves. No, I didn't embroider the fabric, it came like that. I bought a few yards of the fabric over a year ago and have made some wonderful things with it. The lining is a soft coral color, the same as the pin. Thanks to Heather for the great tutorial for the yo-yo pin. I had a lot of fun making this wrapping paper.
I hope Meg likes her birthday present.
Monday, August 14, 2006
Oh I love these shoes. I splurged a little but it's been so long since I've bought shoes I allowed this little indulgence. The pictures don't really do them justice. They are shades of green and oh so cute and I can't wait to tromp around in them in San Francisco.
I also received these gorgeous folk art dessert plates from Anthropologie. I have been looking for decorative plates to adorn a certain wall ever since we moved into our apartment a year ago. I wasn't sure really what I was looking for but when I saw these and the half off sale price I didn't blink an eye. Here's a close up of the blue one:
Sunday, August 13, 2006
Thursday, April 20, 2006
1) Graceland - Woo-hoo!
2) Memphis BBQ
3) I can actually enjoy just being a guest at a wedding and won't have to worry about pictures, speeches, weird hair-do's, watching my consumption of alcohol, etc (i.e. I'm not IN the wedding for once).
On the exercising front, I've decided to really start thinking two steps ahead (thanks to Habeela for sharing the great advice). I don't want to do this tri half a##. If I'm going to do it, I want to DO it! I've even started toying with the idea of running a half marathon next year. If you know me, you know this is a big deal. Ever since I began running almost three years ago I have been asked several times if I ever want to do a marathon. HA! I laughed. Nah, I'll just stick to my 3.1 miles, thank you very much. But I haven't really stuck to even those miles very well over the past three years. I am ashamed to say I have been an on again, off again runner. Shameful, I know. All of this is changing though. I knew I needed a shake-up in my routine, so I signed up for a triathlon. I wanted a little more of a challenge on the running front so I signed up and completed a 10k earlier this month (and ran the whole thing- yeah! - I'm still proud of it as you can see). For both of these events I was not and have not been alone. Beth is training for the tri with me and I had my sister and brother-in-law running the 10k. Having a partner to train with is motivating (and fun!!!) but I know that I won't always be so fortunate. I need to be prepared to train on my own (however, Peter, I still think you should start running with me - wink wink). I need to really incorporate running and training into my life. I need to think two steps ahead. It's not just about getting through the run, the swim, etc. It's about conquering a new challenge, being healthy, feeling good and knowing what I can do and what I will do next. So today, instead of going to lunch with co-workers, I strapped on my sneakers, pressed play, and ran 3.75 miles. I came back to work with a clear mind, sunned shoulders, happy legs (you know, the feeling that they've been worked and they are thanking you for it), and looking forward to the next run.
Saturday, April 15, 2006
I have been pretty negligent on the blogging. Unfortunately I tend to have a one-track mind so I focus all my energies into one thing at a time. This week, when I realized that there are only 20 weeks left till the triathlon, I began to freak out about the biking aspect. I completely ignored it while I was focusing on the swimming bit (see what I mean about a one-track mind?) thinking that it would be no big deal. But then I started reading Holly's blog about a flat tire she got when she was riding home. A flat tire? Eek! I have no idea how I would fix a flat on a bike (I was going to say something about fixing a flat on cars but don't want to jinx myself). Then I started to think about my bike and it's current shape. Let's put it this way: I bought it two springs ago for $25 off of Craigslist. The bike was in OK condition, but it definitely needed an $80 tune-up to get it in great condition. I rode it to the pool yesterday and on my way back I stopped by the bike shop just to take a little 'peak'. Ok, my bike is a mammoth compared to those road bikes. The wheels are so clunky, the frame is heavy and it isn't the right size for me. So...I'm gonna buy a bike! Ahhh! That's how I feel. It'll be my biggest purchase in quite a while, but I'm super excited. My only hesitation is that I won't ride it enough after the triathlon to warrant buying it. But, I have to be positive and think that I'll have such a great time at the tri in August that I'll sign up for another one. Afterall, I am having a ton of fun training for it alone.
In swimming news, Beth and I decided last night to just swim and see how long we could swim for. I got into a somewhat trance as I pulled myself through the water, concentrating on my breathing (then remembering to kick!) that I didn't look at the clock until I finished 20 minutes later! I really could have gone longer too, I was just getting a little tired of the bubbles popping in my ear (Anyone ever use earplugs? How do they work?). I am so impressed at how far Beth and I have come. To think that two and a half months ago we got winded just swimming 20 meters!
I've run a few times since the10kk (I average about 2-3 runs a week). I can tell my running has improved just by the enjoyment factor. I've only gone once this week. I meant to run yesterday but, alas, I left my running shoes at home. I plan on getting up early for a run tomorrow morning before my dreaded telephone interviewing assignment for class.
Sunday, April 02, 2006
David, my brother-in-law came to the house at 6:30 am and we left shortly after that. With a forecast of 70 degrees and high humidity, we all drank a lot of water on that hour drive to the event. We made it to the event, parked, found the restrooms, and made our way to the start line. The race, consisting of some 16,000 people, was well organized. My sister and I predicted that we could finish the race in 1 hour when we signed up for the event (yeah right! We laughed six weeks later) so we were in the H group wave start. David had a slower predicted time but he went ahead and started with us anyways. We were all anxious to just start running. When the H Group was let through, we were off!
The first mile was just spent getting around the slower people, some who were already walking and setting a pace for myself. There were tons of people on the sides cheering us on and local groups shouting at us that we could do it. There were even bands dispersed throughout the course to provide music and motivation. It was really fun. We lost David around mile 2, when we made an attempt to get through a particularly slow pack. I got water at the mile 2 mark. I felt pretty good at this point. The weather was starting to heat up but there was a nice breeze blowing towards us. I was forcing myself to go a little slower than normal so that I that I wouldn't burn out. There was a girl in a green shirt ahead of me that I used as a pace setter since she was going about my pace. At mile 2.5 (or what I thought was 2.5) I realized that I was over a third way done with the course and feeling pretty great. I entertained the thought that I might be able to run this whole thing, but rather than dwell on this I concentrated on my pace and just kept running.
At mile 3 the course just looped around the street so we were running in the opposite direction on Monument avenue. Another water stop, a lot of high fives between my sister and I. At 3.1 miles, still feeling pretty good, I was convinced I would be able to run the whole thing afterall. The problem with the last half of the course, however, was that we were running towards the sun. It was hot. Luckily, I had dressed appropriately for the event with a tank top and shorts and I even remembered my sunglasses (oh how much comfortable it is to run without having to squint the whole time!). However, I definitely started feeling myself slow down because of the heat. We passed a man being helped by paramedics around 3.7 miles...it reminded me to pay attention to my body and not push myself too hard. I passed mile 4, drank some water and Powerade, and mile 5 seemed to be near in the distance. I thought before I started the race that this is the point where I would need to walk. But I felt fine; hot, but doing ok so I kept running. There were more people cheering us on at this part of the course. A few saints were out with water hoses and I made it a point to be under them. I felt newly revived after being sprayed with cold water. I quickened my pace, just a little bit.
At mile 5 I was glad I only had another mile to run. I was starting to get tired, the heat was starting to get to me, but I had run that far so I didn't want to stop then. I let the crowds motivate me to make it to the end. My sister ran ahead of me and was lost in a sea of bouncing heads. "Are we there yet?" I thought. Ah, the yellow sign indicating mile 6 gleamed shortly in the distance. I passed it. Oh no! I still have another .2 miles!!! All along I knew it was 6.2 miles, but I had been telling people it was 6 miles just for simplicity sake. I think I fooled myself after a while that it was only 6 miles. My mistake! I kept running. At 6.1 miles, the finish line was just ahead of me. I started sprinting, surprised I still had the energy still left in me. I crossed the finish...in 1 hour 5 minutes and 19 seconds!!! I had well achieved my goal! I found my sister, who finished a minute ahead of me and gave her a big hug. We were proud of each other and ourselves for completing the event in under our goal time and for running the whole way. I still can't believe it. David came in well under his goal time too. We were a happy group.
Overall, I was impressed with the event, impressed with Kathy and David, and impressed with myself for my performance. I now know I can run 6.2 (don't forget the .2!) miles. It's a really good feeling.
Wednesday, March 29, 2006
I enjoy learning. I really, really do. But why oh why must you make me write up a report analyzing the results of my cognitive interviews? Oh yeah, it might actually help the survey for the client (yes, our class this semester, and next, has a real money paying client).
I've never been one to get work done ahead of time. I tried for a very long time. Every semester of college I vowed to turn a new leaf but halfway through the semester I gave up my plans. Now I don't really even try because I know that I'll be up late the night before working on it no matter what. So I try to spare myself the extra time of worrying and trying to get motivated. Yeah, my paper is due tomorrow, I'm only half-way done (I'm lying, I've only done about a third of it) and here I am talking to you about procrastination. Fitting, isn't it?
Tuesday, March 28, 2006
In training news, the Richmond Avenue 10K is in three days. Am I ready? Ummm, kind of. To be honest with you I have not stuck to the training plan 100%. It's been more like 75%. I skipped a few (ok, a little more than a few) and my long runs weren't as long as planned. But I have been consistent with running 4 miles for the past few weekends. I'm actually quite impressed with my adaptation to running outside. You see, I've been accustomed to the treadmill for so long that I would only venture outside if it was absolutely gorgeous outside and I just couldn't stay indoors without a guilty feeling of missing out on great weather in a city that is so sporadic with great weather. However, yesterday, as I began a 3 mile run on the treadmill, I started to feel a little more bored than usual. By the .5 mile mark I couldn't take it anymore. I donned a long sleeve shirt and ran 3 miles around the Mall and enjoyed it immensely. Tomorrow I plan on running outside again. The extra Cherry Blossom Festival tourists will be great motivation to run a little faster (am I showing off?) and longer, I hope.
Saturday, March 25, 2006
Beth needed a big bag to hold all her stuff (maybe for all the workout clothes we've been toting around for the triathlon training?). She bought a new green spring jacket and needed her bag to match her jacket. Hence, the Large Green Trellis tote was born. Customize it with your choice of fabric to make it your own.
Friday, March 17, 2006
Tuesday, March 14, 2006
Now, internet, I have not been the best blogger. I must admit that I am amazed at how cool and timely other blogs are out there, and mine cannot even compare. But, today I realized that someone, at some point, has read this blog! Mo, my apologies for discovering this a month later. By the way, you (if anyone else reads this) all should check out her stationary and cards...Froy and Olo Design. She has some amazing beautiful things on there that are definitely worth checking out. This design is one of my favorites:
I'm thinking that my 3 year old niece would love some personalized stationary!
Triathlon Training News
Well, the warm weather we had this weekend definitely was an excuse to get outside and put some miles in. Ok, all of 'almost' 4 miles, but I like how 'putting some miles in' sounds. I had an amazing run and thought yet again that if I lived in a 70 degrees year round climate I would most definitely be in amazing shape. It's hard to run when it's cold, and in contrast, too hot outside. Ho hum. Today I donned a long sleeve shirt and ran around the Mall (that's the National Mall...ie Smithsonian ok? I did NOT run around a shopping mall). The run was ok...a little windy for my tastes.
Beth and I have been swimming twice a week now. We are still working on endurance and increasing our laps. I think the best thing about signing up for the triathlon is discovering how enjoyable it is to swim. I love it and look forward to swimming laps. Isn't it great discovering something new? Especially when that something is free and good for you!
Sunday, February 26, 2006
To celebrate the grand web opening, I am offering free shipping on all orders from now until the end of March. Also, since I love getting goodies, I'll probably throw in some goodies with each order as well. :)
Triathlon training news
Today was day 4 for swimming. Since the pool was busier than last week, B. and I had to share a lane with another swimmer. It definitely helped motivate us to keep swimming rather than stop and hang out like we had been doing. We managed to get in 27 'laps'. Only 13 more and we'll be ready for the triathlon. Of course, we'll have to do 40 'laps' non-stop, but hey, we're working on it!
Monday, February 13, 2006
Now, internet, I am extending the Healthy Heart Challenge to you. That's right. Beginning today and running through Sunday, February 19th, I challenge YOU to get at least 30 minutes of cardiovascular exercise on at least five days this week. The prize (drawn at random): a $20 gift certificate to Stephanie Lynn Studio (opening soon...for real). How do you sign up? At the end of the week, or on your fifth day of exercise (whichever comes first), send an e-mail to: email@example.com. Write 'Healthy Heart Challenge' in the subject line and write "I did it!" in the body text. The winner will be drawn at random from all submissions recieved by midnight, February 19th and will be notified by e-mail. (P.S. This is strictly an honor system y'all, so I expect you all to be honest :).
So, come on, what are you waiting for! Get moving!
For more information on a healthy heart, visit http://www.americanheart.org.
I wanted to let you all know about a really cool contest going on now through the month on March. It's called The Happily Handmade Giveaway and I encourage you to check it out. There are a lot of really cool indie designers out there making really great unique stuff: jewelry, clothing, bags, paper products, bath products, etc. Every season a bunch of them get together and offer a contest to promote indie businesses. All you have to do to enter is go to a participating sponsor and follow the instructions for entry. This usually only requires you to sign up for a newsletter. No purchase necessary! It's as simple as that. You could win some really great prizes and find some neat products along the way. For more information, check out: http://www.happilyhandmadegiveaway.com.
Please tell anyone you think would be interested about this contest. I think it's a wonderful event that more people should be aware of.