Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Etsy Scavenging

I went to make an etsy account yesterday and ended up ordering some earrings. I was surprised at how affordable a lot of the jewelry was, and ended up finding three pairs of decent earrings for around $5 each. I felt like browsing agin tonight, and these are some of the pairs that peaked my interest.

I loved these "dragon eyes" earrings, but at $33 I have to pass.

These I would really like if the bottom moon part was removed. I seem to like simple, circular or tear drop earrings best.
$22 from Artemesia Designs.

Most of this seller's shop is thread spun earrings, and there are some really beautiful color combinations.
$10 on sale right now from Sincear Jewelry

Next on the agenda: my own etsy shop.
I also have a new best friend - spray fabric paint. It's currently on clearance at Michael's and JoAnne Fabrics, and makes bag designing and applique a lot easier. Maybe anna and I will finally make our matching short short club if you can just cut out a stencil and spray paint it to stick just like silk screen...

Sunday, April 26, 2009

headband to match my bag stripes.
Is that annoyingly cute and/or hipsterish?

Rainy Day Refashion

Tshirt Rehab

1. Take 1 giant nighty tee-shirt that you wish was smaller and cuter.
2. Cut v-neck, hem, sew.
3. Cut off sleeves and re-sew adding darts (if your boobs make it look awkward like mine did).
4. Cut off bottom band & fit to waist size. Hem both bottom of shirt and bottom band, and attach again adding gathering to make them fit.

and ta-dah! Cute fitted bubble bottom shirt. :)

Oh... and more envelopes, soon to be sent to Nippon.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Work Release

Our annual fundraiser benefit is today.

I'm relieved that my to-do list is done. I get a sort of pride out of knowing that the benefit will look classy because of me. I did the invitations, the posters, the name cards, the programs, the display signs. We used to have a board member in advertising who would do our promotional materials, but she is leaving, and I can understand why. I do seem to get some sort of pleasure and pride out of taking on an insane amount of stressful work and coming through on all of it. Actually that is a very good description of one of the few reasons I love this job. When it is busy I delight in the fact that I am one of the few people that can juggle as much as I do, and be successful at it. I thrive in a stressful, fast-paced, deadine-oriented environment, which I am getting I get from my father.

Yet again I am re-evaluating my position and considering staying in the position if I don't get into grad school or move somewhere. Mairin told me the other day that she was asked to apply for a full-time writing instructor position at Roosevelt University, which means she has an excellent chance of being chosen. It would be a huge pay increase, and probably be what she actually wants to do. That means in 4 months I would theoretically have the opportunity to become the Executive Director if I wanted it.

Despite the frustrations and stress load recently I have felt like I at least understand better how to juggle things at work, and how to give back to myself at home. Sewing, like so many other hobbies I have attempted to take up, has at least been relieving some of the stress in a more healthy and productive way than zoning out for hours in front of tv. My most recent finished product: reversible shoulder bag.

Bags and purses are so easy because you can use almost any material and there's no fitting required, but how many more bags can I make? I may have to start taking orders or venturing out into actual clothing, which I am sort of hesitant to attempt.
Sigh. Off to the fancy, hopefully successful fundraiser.

Sunday, April 19, 2009


Yesterday at work I was rather bored and decided to take on this project of envelope-making. It's a whole new way to send creative letters like pretty stationary, only cheaper! I adapted a stencil I found online and sorted through the various Vanity Fair & SPIN magazines lying around the YO.

Back of the envelopes. Its great to have something intricate to do with your hands while watching TV or a movie. It keeps me awake and I ended up adding more and more collage to the later ones. Fronts & Flaps

Insides. That's Clint Eastwood on the left if you were wondering.

Something about the precision of cutting with an X-acto knife, using pre-made materials and combining them in a clean, orderly way is very satisfying. Maybe I'm an OCD artist. :)

Saturday, April 18, 2009



My cousin is pregnant! Her baby shower is in a month and ta-dah, I have a new opportunity for a project.
I'm a little sick of crochet and I never use anything I make because I'm not a big knit-wearer besides scarves. That being said, since this project isn't for me, and I have some baby thread, I could get started on a baby blanket. I also now have the option of sewing on a backing of some sort to make it softer. This may, of course, backfire because my aunt is a quilter by trade and I would expect her to follow the same route for Ally's gift. Hmm.

Aother option would a teddy bear. I could even do it out of brown suede because I have so much.

I've been thinking of another expectant mother from work I'd like to make a gift for who is not quite as far along. She is a HUGE Bob Marley fan, so I was thinking of making a brown bear and felting some dreads so it would be little bob teddy. :) I found a tutorial on making felt dreadlocks that I am sure I could sew into the head of a small teddy bear.

Any ideas on ways to make it more marley-esque? I suppose I could crochet him a little hat, or maybe make the bear itself out of red, green and yellow. Thoughts?

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Personal Exporting

I've been thinking recently about why tasks like blogging, tweeting, and updating facebook are so satisfying. Lauren and I were talking once about how satisfying it is to mail an envelope, or send a fax. Maybe I am just a task-oriented person, but putting something out there is like a neat little accomplishment and an end in itself.

Whatever the reason, it's my new love, along with finding new projects to do that are cheap, free, or recycled to take up what time I do have that isn't filled by social engagements.

Another to add to the list of possibilities for this coming weekend...
Much simpler than crocheting plastic bags into a grocery bag - fusing them together to form an even stronger, water proof fabric that can then be made into a grocery bag!
DIY via Etsy Lab (now defunct) - "Long Overdue Fusing Bag Tutorial"

Monday, April 13, 2009

Ideas for next week's days off

1. Bake pies in small jars. Extra bonus of less recycling to take out. :)

2. Go to Salvation army, buy some heavy fabric clothes to use for new sewing projects and make stencils to add patterns.

3. Make some new envelopes (since I'm out) to send overseas/in states to friends. I think Dan & Richard still owe me letters but who says I can't send more with my free time. Besides, what else am i going to do with all the stupid magazines I get from Rachel Ray, LLBean, Victorias Secret etc?

New Project

Finally got my new sewing machine and got right to work.
This is Bag #2 - braided strap, magnetic closure, fully lined w/ two pockets, one zippered. Brown suede came from a couch cover I wasn't using. I need to find some new projects to use up the rest of it.