Friday, November 22, 2013

Let me tell you a little story about my day yesterday...

Warning: a little graphic
So I’m making a few of my friends skirts for Christmas presents this year because they’re cheap and easy. I nearly finished my very best friend Anna’s and all I had to do was finish the seam between the band and the skirt. I’m going along with my zig zag stitch and it kept slipping from under the presser foot. I went to put it back under and I guess my foot slipped because I sewed right through my finger! I looked down and there was blood everywhere and half a needle in my left hand pointer finger, along with some thread that was still threaded through the machine as well. I was stuck. Of course, I was home all alone and of course both my phone and the scissors were on the floor, out of my reach. I cried out for help several times, knowing it was useless. I was shaking so bad, but eventually I was able to loosen the thread enough to cut it with the little razor hidden on the side of my machine just for cutting thread and free myself. As soon as I did that, I was able to pull the half of the needle in me right out and of course there was more blood. I started sucking on my wound and lunged for my phone when I realized there was still thread coming out of me. I had sewn an entire stitch into my finger! I called Aaron absolutely sobbing and he only caught half of what I was saying but he left work and rushed to be with me. While I was waiting for him, I contemplated calling 911, but after I examined it further and deduced that I didn’t hit bone and that the gash wasn’t that deep, I determined an overpriced ambulance ride was not worth it. Also, I hate hospitals and emergency rooms and spending an undetermined amount of time there just for a doctor to xray me and look at me and say “You’ll be fine” was not what I wanted to do. But that damn thread was still in there! I pulled and pulled, but it only made the wound bigger. I went up to my room to examine the scene. A nice blood spot on Anna’s now ruined skirt, blood on the presser foot and gasp! The part of the needle that I pulled out was missing the tip! Gross. I’m pretty sure it’s in my finger. Once Aaron got home, I was able to get most of the thread out. I’m pretty sure the rest of it is still attached to the tiny tip of the needle that’s in there somewhere. I think I will be okay leaving it there though. My tetnis shot is up to date. The bleeding stopped and I put a bandage on it. Now it just hurts when you touch it. Very tender and VERY sore. and now I only have 9 functioning fingers for a few days.
I will now be much more careful when I sew!
Here are some pictures!
You can see at the top right next to my nail where the needle went in. and there’s that lovely piece of thread sticking out!
imageThere’s the loverly needle that was in me! Blood on all the things!
I am lucky that It didn’t hit bone and I’m lucky that the needle didn’t break and hit me in the face/eye.
Be careful out there my fellow crafters!
UPDATE: the tip of the needle did not fly into the oblivion of my room as I had previously hoped. It was indeed, still in my finger. That thread in my finger sticking out? Yeah the needle was still attached. That’s why it hurt so much to pull on it. It wiggled its way out on January 1, nearly 6 weeks later. I am lucky I didn’t get an infection.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Watercolor Papers

I saw something similar to this on Pinterest and I loved it! I thought it would be great to stick in a frame on my bookshelf, especially because I love butterflies.

Monday, September 30, 2013

Yellow Pencil Skirt

I found this great, yellow fabric in the clearance section of Joanns and really wanted to make a skirt from it, but I’ve already made several A-line skirts, so I wanted to try something different. I decided on a pencil skirt with an invisible zipper. It was an easy skirt to make and I even decided to make it a little more professional looking by finishing my seams with bias tape, opposed to a zig-zag stitch. 

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Ravenclaw Ring

I’ve recently started experimenting with resin as a platform for jewelry making. I bought a Modpodge “starter kit” and made this ring. I like to think if I ever attended Hogwarts, I would have been a Ravenclaw.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Tutorial: Fleur-de-lis Glitter Phone Case

For this tutorial, you will need:
- A plain phone case
-Spray Lacquer
Step 1: Stick your sticker on the case. 
Step 2: Modpodge around the sticker. Make sure you get the sides of the case too.
Step 3: Glitter! I tried to avoid the sticker as much as possible. It was easier to peel off later.
Step 4: Let it dry a little bit, then peel the sticker off. Continue to let it dry completely.
Step 5: Use a smaller brush to paint Modpodge within the shape of where your sticker was.
Step 6: Glitter some more!
Step 7: Let it dry completely, then spray lacquer.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Plaid Shirt

I’m impeccably proud of myself each time I complete a project and it turns out better than the last. This is especially true for sewing projects, as there are many gaps in my sewing knowledge and education. The more things I sew, the more professionally they turn out each time.
I made Aaron this shirt because he keeps bugging me to make him something (mostly because he wants to show off and brag about me.)
I actually followed most of the pattern for this one. Generally, pattern instructions end up confusing me, so I often have extra pieces in the end because I usually end up doing my own thing. I only ended up with one extra piece because I chose not to use the facing for the front, mostly because it is a more casual shirt than dressy shirt. Had I made it a dress shirt, I would have used it.
Pattern used: Simplicity #4760
I did a double stitch on most seams by just sewing what I already did about 1/4 apart (double needles scare me).
I lined up the plaids as best I could and I even finished and pressed my seams!
The only screwy part was the button holes. I lost my presser feet and ordered a new set of just standard snap on feet. Most of them work just fine, but for some reason my machine requires a very specific button hole foot. So I used the standard foot and pieced the holes together. So they’re a little sloppy. Functioning, but sloppy. 
Chester wanted in on our little photoshoot…
Can I say again that I am super proud of myself? Because I am. I am basically a self taught sewer and I learned most of my stuff through experimenting because the internet wasn’t much of a resource for that kind of stuff when I started out. My mom taught me all the basics about sewing and from there I kind of went with it. I started with patterns and easy fabrics and from there I sorta figured it out. I never formally knew how to alter a pattern, I just kind of eye balled it and went with it. And I’ve messed up. I know I have. Remember that blue dress that I cut way to tight? Yep. Didn’t really follow a pattern for that one. Now a days I use patterns as guidelines and I’ve gotten pretty decent at judging where I need to make alterations and how. I still have a ton of gaps in my knowledge, but the internet has taught me so well, especially in my discovery of Pinterest. Hats off to the amazing bloggers I’ve found through Pinterest with their tutorials and random bits of wisdom that have made me go “AHHHH! I get it!” Example: I had no idea about finishing seams. Like, I didn’t know that was a thing. I thought fabric just frayed and you dealt with it. Sewing a zig zag stitch after the straight stitch blew my mind and I only started doing it on my past few projects. Seems like a simple thing, but I had no idea. Yet I’ve been able to work with chiffons for years now? See what I mean by gaps?  I guess the point of this little rant was to ruin any of your illusions that I am any type of expert in the sewing realm. True, I have a pretty good eye for how clothes work and I’m decent at figuring things out, but I am not perfect at all. If any of my followers have sewing experience and want to point out ways that I can improve, I am all for it. Constructive criticism is good for the soul! Like I said, I’m still learning. But it’s always nice to see improvement and this project really made me wow myself.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Resin Necklace and Chicago Inspiration

For our anniversary back in July, the boy and I headed up to my second home and had a blast. Chicago will always hold a special place in my heart and hopefully someday it will be my home again. Until then, I’ll just have to be satisfied with visits.
I made this necklace shortly after our trip, using some resin and a bevel holder thingy (is there a proper name for that?) I found a picture of a map online. In the future, I’d like to use some real maps, old and new. It was my first experiment with resin and I’m already kind of obsessed. Can I combine resin and the letter stampers? Is there a project like that out there for me? Because I will be all over that!
In addition to this necklace, the rest of the trip gave me tons of inspiration for projects that I’m not really sure what they will be yet.
Until I figure out what that inspiration will turn into, have a couple pictures from our trip. Hopefully they inspire you too!
Our hotel was super artsy.
The restaurant in the hotel would be the exact style I would choose if I had my own home (i’d maybe throw in a few accent pieces for color.) The photo doesn’t do it justice, but the details in this place were amazing. 
Spotted during a walk in Lincoln Park. My love for fun colored doors is unwavering
I love this city <3
Two amazing years with this dude and many more to come!

Monday, July 29, 2013

Avenue Q Costumes

This weekend another great show at my favorite community theatre closed and I am so proud to have been a part of it. Avenue Q sold out for almost every performance and I think it’s the only time in my career that one of my costumes will ever get it’s own applause.
The monstrosity known as the light up wedding dress stole the show for a brief moment and I couldn’t have been happier. I made the thing from scratch and had to figure out how to make it tacky, yet lovely, and how to attach a strand of lights so that they could be turned on as she walked on stage. It was a struggle, but it all worked out rather well.
After the dress, all the other costumes were easy! I only had to pull/make/tailor a few things for those that were not using puppets. The puppetiers wore their own dark clothing, so I didn’t have to worry about them!
This top was by far my favorite. Also made by me.
Even with the light up dress, this show was still way less of a stressball than The Producers was. Very proud of the cast a crew and very glad to have been a part of this one!

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Refurbished Stools

Aaron and I found these crazy cheap stools at Goodwill back in October and kind of put them out of our minds for a while. Over the weekend, we were desperate for some kind of project to work on and remembered we had these. We headed over to Joann’s to pick out a fabric and pulled some spray paint out of the garage. 
They were in pretty good shape, but the fabric on the cushions were nasty and dirty!
They were simple enough to redo. The tops screwed right off and a quick few coats of paint and some staples later we had some really nice new stools.
I’m not the best spray painter in the world…
Not sure where in Aaron’s house we are going to put these, but we liked the fabric and we love the finished product!
The stools were only $6.00 a piece at Goodwill and the fabric was $10 for a yard at Joann’s (we picked the expensive print, of course.) The paint we already had, so I don’t remember the exact cost, but we estimated it was about $30 to do these. I think that’s about the cost of one stool at Home Goods!