Monday, November 30, 2009

Don't forget to bring an owl!

I made this last week for a precious three year old boy I sit sometimes:

I had altered some window treatments for his room and there was a little of this polka dot fabric leftover. So I decided to do something with it. It's really thick like upholstery fabric, so it's not the cuddliest softie, but owls are nearly always cute. It was inspired by this one.

There are so many other great scarf and sweater re-purposes around right now. Make it and Love it has another one for girly little leggings that I love:

This scarflette  looks really simple to do:

And I plan on using this method  to make a couple winter hats for HG. His hats all have ears on top to make him look like some kind of animal. Which is cute, but sometimes he just wants to be a cute baby person:

And speaking of sweaters, I'm feeling like maybe having a good old-fashioned-ugly-Christmas-sweater party. Besides the awesome seasonal tackiness, I think it will involve graham cracker "gingerbread" houses, old Christmas music records, and hot beverages with an array of flavored Baileys. Just some ideas I'm formulating... you'd want to come that party right?

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Coming out of the turkey coma...

...three days later.

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving with our family in Tennessee. So so good in many ways.

Here is part of what I did for the table decorations. Not a great shot, but you can see the glittery fruits:

The picture really does not do the sparkliness justice. I just took apples and pears and sponged some mod podge on, then dusted with Martha Stewart craft glitter. If you ever do something like this, it is totally worth it to spring for the Martha glitter. It's a little pricier, but it's very fine glitter, so it looks beautiful and not like a kid's school craft project.

My Nanny saw me preparing these on Wednesday night, and in classic Nanny fashion, was very put off that the fruit would be "wasted" instead of eaten. But when she saw it on the tables, she said it looked like a "festive restaurant" in there, so I was satisfied. The jars in the center are just twigs from a store-bought swag and then leaves made from metallic origami paper sandwiching them. I like to call it a "glam-natural" Thanksgiving :)

Anyway, the fruit would look very festive for easy Christmas decs too. They are going to stick around all season.

HG loved my parents dog Harley, who spent the whole week running away from him. 

Tuesday, November 24, 2009


Mibo has put out a FREE advent calendar download! I think advent calendars rank in the most essential of holiday supplies, probably right under the tree. And this one is pretty stylish.

Go here to download yours. I think there is also a free 2010 planner download on their site. Enjoy!

Sunday, November 22, 2009


So I did not get to go to the big indie craft market in Columbus, but turns out we have one here in Cincinnati! I had no idea about it, it's only in it's first year, but the Crafty Supermarket was really fun. Nick just spotted the poster in Starbucks last Monday and said he would go into work a little later on Saturday so we could go. Yeah, he's pretty good.

It was held in the Northside Tavern which was just the perfect location. It was our favorite place to go hear local music and enjoy an adult beverage, pre-HG days of course. There were over 20 vendors there, all so fun and inspiring.

Some of my faves:

Off the Beaten Path , who made this hilarious mustache tote I bought:

Hand Embroidered lovelies from Says You. I did not buy this, but I might have to get it from their shop later:

Kitsch Cafe which has always been on my Etsy faves list. Who wouldn't love to add this to their christmas decor this year?

And lastly, check out this lovely girl's creations. Cutest strange little softies and sculptures ever.

Discovering local art you enjoy is fun. Look up indie craft fairs in your area. It's also fun to go to the "shop local" section of Etsy and see all the great locally made stuff in your city.

Now I'm thinking about going to the Indieana Handicraft Exchange  in a couple weeks to finish up holiday shopping. We'll see if the boys will be up for it...

Friday, November 20, 2009

"recessionista" lessons

I have been trying more refashioning of old clothing into new lately. I'm gonna go ahead and say that I'm not the best at it yet. But it is really fun and if I keep trying I will be able to save a lot of money on clothing.   I have already learned a lot about working with jersey and knit materials.

Let's start with the one I actually like:

I got this black and gray shirt for a couple bucks at the thrift store and it was already in good condition. Then I added the white parts from this forever 21 shirt I found in my closet that I haven't worn in a long time. Easy! And I actually wear it often. Helpful, since last year I was wearing maternity shirts and for some stupid reason I threw away everything else in my closet. (I didn't really throw it away, it's at goodwill...that would just be plain wasteful!)

a detail of the pretty bottom:

This dress was the first refashion I tried, about 2 months ago. It was inspired by those "hey, it's a shirt with a skirt attached" kind of dresses that are everywhere right now. It was an oversized Target t shirt I had and a dress that fit really weirdly on top. But I loved the pockets on the skirt part, so that's what I used. Then I slapped on a white linen belt to tie in the back. I love the unexpected color combination. Nick pointed out that I should have sewed the belt on a little lower to cover up that little bit of navy stripe. I hate it when he's right. Who knows if I'll feel like wearing it in the spring...

I had this black thrift store sweater I didn't really know what to do with, so Sunday I made this capelet scarf wrap thingie. It was very quick and easy, but then I realized there is absolutely no situation I could see myself wearing this in. I'm just not that fashionable. I might wear it in the scarf style she suggests though.

Ok, last one. I have to show you because it's so awful. People are doing a lot of ruffles these days, they are all over J. Crew shirts, so they are cute right? Not in this case.

The colors are wrong, the placement is wrong, the ruffles look sad. I had never made ruffles before and they are actually really easy and fun, but I think I will stick to putting them on little girls' clothing. I just need a little girl.

So, in summary: Experimenting is fun. Mistakes are good. Jessica is only mildly fashionable.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Columbus or Bust? Bust.

So our trip to Columbus for the Tiny Canary craft market did not materialize. Instead we all spent most of the morning in the ER with a very sick HG. He's ok, turns out it's just an ear infection and he's doing much better than yesterday.

Friday morning I was at a friend's house watching their kids, and apparently not watching my own very well. I was on the couch giving one of the girls a bottle while HG piddled around in the kitchen. Then I heard a gi-normous crash. I practically threw baby girl on the ground (not really) and ran over to find him on his back, on the hardwood, with a huge kitchen chair pinning him down! How the heck did this little 19 lb beast pull that thing over!?!?!

He scREAMed for 30 minutes straight. Being a 7 month old that thinks he can walk already, he has had a few head bonks, but he gets over them very quickly. So this worried me. Then he vomitted all over me and my friend's carpet. Not a great day to give him blueberries for breakfast. Gross. This also worried me. I called a nurse friend and then the pediatrician's office. They said to bring him in. My friend came home from work and I dashed to the doctor, singing and yelling in the car in a failed attempt to keep him awake.

He saw the nurse practitioner, she said his head looked fine. Ok, went home.

The kid was miserable all afternoon. Very whiny, wanting to be held, kept falling asleep on us- which he NEvER does. But then he couldn't sleep very long and would just be miserable again.

Friday night, he never slept more than 30 minutes at a time, so neither did I. Actually, that's not true, his wonderful father went up to his room and let him sleep on his chest from 5:30-7:30. Poor thing.

I called my dr's office back Saturday morning and never got to talk to a doctor, but the np told me to take him to the ER. This was a little alarming.

Anyway, I will spare you all the details of the hospital trip, but turns out he had a high fever from an ear infection which 3 different doctors said was totally unrelated to his fall. So weird. This kid has never been sick a day in his life yet, and he was perfectly fine before falling.

This would have been nice to find out at the doctor's office to avoid the $200 hospital co-pay. But when your normally very happy kid is that miserable and pathetic, you don't really care. And it was better to be safe and know that he didn't have some kind of head-trauma or whatever.

Anyways, having a sick and screaming baby is not fun and breaks a mommy's heart. Glad my parents were here to help though. Hopefully I can fit in some therapeutic sewing this afternoon...or at least shopping.

Friday, November 13, 2009


Just wanted to show you some onesies I made a while back. This was my inspiration. They are really fun and easy to do. In fact, a couple weeks ago I threw a baby shower for a friend where everyone decorated a onesie using this method with fabric (I'm going back over them with my sewing machine, hopefully before the baby gets borned.) People also used tulip fabric paint and iron-ons and they all came out really cute. Everyone had a blast. Anyway, here are a few of mine...

I still have the yellow butterfly laying around here somewhere... everyone I know is having a boy. So leave me a comment if you know a baby girl you want to give it to! (It's size 0-3 mos.)

I leave you with some HG adorableness from a few months ago...

You can't really see, but he is wearing one of my "muchacho" designs here. And speaking of my mom...she should be here in about 20 minutes! Can't wait to tell you all about Tiny Canary!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Living the dream

I have had many conversations with various friends discussing exactly how something like this would work. I seriously dream about this stuff. Now, I just need to make friends with an architect... who's in?

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Time wasting...

I just spent the last hour plus looking at and laughing very loudly all alone in my living room. I love Etsy like crazy, but who knew there was so much great CRAP on there? You won't find this stuff on the gift guides... I know, I know, it's not cool to make fun of other people's art or whatever. But I guess I'm a horrible person, because this stuff is hilarious.

I suppose I laugh for the same reasons I laugh at this and this

I really need to grow up before my knack for making fun of everything rubs off on my child...

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Columbus or bust!

I'm so excited because my mom offered to come up and go to the Tiny Canary market with me next weekend! And my lovely dad is going to watch HG while Nick works. What a great grandpa!

I can't wait to see all the handmade goodness!

Friday, November 6, 2009

I heart pennants.

Pennants are all over the place right now and I am loving them. I can't get enough. Fabric, paper, whatever.  Today I made this one for a Thanksgiving decoration, which I have none of. But this year we are going to my parents' in TN and I told my mom I would do some decs for the big dinner. In the meantime, it's hanging out in the apartment.

It has more green than your traditional fall stuff, but I like it. And it still has enough brown and yellow, right?

I am also using a FREE (!!) set of Thanksgiving printables from Tangarang  which you should go download right now. I bought a baby shower set from their Etsy shop, Paper and Cake  which I used a couple of weeks ago at a friend's shower I threw. It was all beautiful stuff and I got so many compliments!

Here are some fabric pennants I made a while back just because I had so much robot fabric leftover from HG's room. So easy to make and I think they would look adorable in any kid's room.

Here are some more tasty pennants and banners I found around Etsy:

mini map circus decoration by kategreiner
Guirlande de Flottement d'Oiseau by royalbuffet
crocheted vintage garland by dottieangel
Happy Birthday banner PDF by meringuedesigns
vintage hankies wedding bunting by poppylarity

Wednesday, November 4, 2009


This is really kind of embarrassing to put in my first real post, but I guess there is something freeing about confession.

See, I am very lucky to have a whole room to myself just to create things in. And mine normally looks like this. At least you can tell I am putting it to use.

It's not the mess that bothers me so much. Although I would like some shelves or some semblance of organization. It's just those awful blank white walls. So uninspiring! There are about a dozen projects in my head that would fill them, but I'm sure I won't get to that until after the holidays. For now I just have that lonely panel curtain I whipped up a couple months ago.

Oh to have a craft room like this kitschy little haven.

Anyway, I did manage to make something today during a very nice 2.5 hour HG nap. (yay!) I made a couple of nursing covers for friends that are due in December. I have seen  several tutorials for these, but I like this one from Little Birdie Secrets

I have one I made before HG was born with leftover robot fabric from his room. It was a diaper bag essential.

This is where he plays when I attempt to work up there while he is still awake. Yeah, that lasts for about ten minutes.

Welcome Welcome

I have been stalking the blog world long enough... You would think that I would have started this sooner. When it first became fashionable for everyone to have a blog, I thought it was kind of silly. How could all those people possibly have lives interesting enough to put on the internet for everyone to see?

But now there are so many family and craft blogs that I enjoy obsessively. I guess there is something about having your own kid that makes you want to hear about what everyone else is doing with theirs.

But the main reason for starting this is to document my creativity for my own sake. I began sewing and making things about 2 years ago I guess. Now I've made so many things and given some away, but I'm wishing I had pictures of all of them, or at least written down how I made them, where I got my pattern, etc. So that's what this is for. From now on, everything I make goes on here. And even if I'm the only one who reads it, at least I will have some idea of the path my creations took. But if someone else would enjoy seeing them, that's good too!