Monday, December 28, 2015

Valentine Crafting Inspiration

Christmas was a super stressful time for me for many reasons and I really didn't have a chance to enjoy many crafty Christmas projects other than making a few gifts for people. I really love holidays, seasonal decorations, and all of the other arguably pointless things surrounding holiday times. My mom was always big into decorating for different holidays so it's a bit nostalgia and a bit just plain fun. Having missed out on Christmas, I'm kind of excited to make some Valentine's Day inspired things!

I love pie pops and tartlets! These would also be super easy to vegan-ize (source)

I really like seasonal wreaths and this one is super cute! (source)

I love what a simple and cute pouch this makes for easy valentine gifts for a work place or classroom (source)

Such a cute gift idea for a significant other! Considering Ari and I just moved to Austin, this would be a fun way to explore the city together as well (source)

I'm currently looking for every idea to save for scrap fabric that I can. As my sewing habit grows so does my scrap fabric collection. These are super cute and simple (source)

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Feelin' Scrappy

When I first started sewing everyone told me "save your scraps! you can use all of it!" I've been sewing for a few years now and the scraps I've been saving have really begun to pile up. Since I haven't had time to tackle patchwork and quilting, I found a simple Scrap Coaster project to start using up some of my tinier scraps.

The bottom layer is felt, the middle layer is scraps of quilting batting I had, and the top is different pieces of fabric that were too small to be usable for most other projects. I tried to keep them all random in fabric, thread color, and layout. They're not the most amazing things ever, but it was fun way to declutter my fabrics while watching a movie. I made a total of like 20 of them so I figure they'll be good stocking stuffer gifts for the future.

I'm really looking forward to finding ways to keep using my fabric stash!

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Things I Made

I made it a goal to start creating one thing per week as part of my birthday resolutions and so far I'm doing pretty good! I started taking sewing classes at the Stitch Lab here in Austin right after my birthday which definitely helps keep me motivated. Making appointments to do things has always worked best for me because then I'm accountable to someone else to be somewhere and get something done. Plus I get to learn new techniques that would probably take me 343984792374 as long after lots of cursing and watching YouTube how-to videos.

Star Wars bag! I've been holding onto this fabric forever.

Turquoise pillow was made at the Stitch Lab. The pillow behind it was made about 3 years ago.
One of my most favorite things I've made! A reversible dress for a friend's daughter. I might need one in my size!
I managed to average one item per week exactly in October! Woot woot! I'm not taking anymore classes anytime soon, but I'm pretty stoked to keep this momentum going.

What have you been making?

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Down on the Farm

After a lot of headache and heartache, our pig Traif now lives on a farm just outside of Dallas. Pigs are herd animals and the social aspect of their development is crucial to their behavior as adults. As time went and on and he got bigger, I started to feel guilty about how much time he was spending alone and inside. He has always been an indoor animal and an "only child" so I don't know if he ever knew any better, but my guilt raged on. So, after a lot of crying and Google searches, we found the Atlasta Home Sanctuary in Ennis, TX. This will hopefully be an extended yet temporary living arrangement as I'm pretty miserable without him. I'm the mean time though, if you follow me on any form of social media, prepare for more pig photos that you can handle!

Thursday, October 15, 2015

DIY Dresser Revamp

As silly and simple as it was, finishing my first crafty project for our new apartment in Austin felt awesome! We had a dresser from Ikea that belonged to my husband's brother. We've had it for about 6 years so I would imagine it's at least 10 years old. It's has had a rough life! We have moved it 3 times and before that I think it moved a few times. Considering it was the cheapest dresser at Ikea forever ago, it's been a tough little soldier. We hauled it out of the moving truck practically in pieces. A little TLC later and we got the dresser back together, but the surface of it was scratched and stained. At work we put chalkboard paint on pretty much everything, but I have never used it on anything at home. I figured chalkboard paint was thick, dark, and would work really well on masking the issues with the dresser PLUS be something fun for our new apartment.

A few chalkboard paint tips:
1. definitely do 3 or 4 layers! a nice thick surface of chalkboard paint tends to result in a smoother writing surface.
2. give it several hours to dry! chalkboard paint appears to dry really fast, but don't start writing on it right away. you don't want to scratch through all your hard work with your chalk.
3. put it on everything! no, really. do it.

Side note, the lighting in our apartment is TERRIBLE! We only have 4 windows in the whole place. One faces a shaded hallway and the others face the parking lost so we keep the shades closed all day. It's definitely a change from our old place where almost all the windows faced our back yard and we had complete privacy. And by complete privacy I mean I'm pretty sure the residents of the nursing home behind us could see into our yard, but I kindaaaaaa didn't care.

Monday, October 12, 2015

Happy Birthday To Me!

Image Source

GUYS.... GUYS......I’m TWENTY-FRIGGIN-SIX. Somehow, I can’t wrap my brain around this. I don’t feel old. I don’t feel young. I feel like I’ve entered a strange age ambiguous group. You know, you have those friends who could be young or just look pretty good for their age? I think I’m in that group now. Or maybe I look terrible even for 26?! I dunno. Time is strange.

So! It has been a few years since I’ve made a real list of resolutions, but I decided to give it another go. I have said before that I love making resolutions based on my birthday and not on January 1st. Somehow it makes it feel more personal and real even if it’s only in my head. Looking back over goals of year’s past my lists have certainly changed direction, but it feels so good to think about things I’ve accomplished (learning how to sew? CHECK!).

1. Create one thing per week- Whether I’m painting with watercolor, sewing, or designing something on ceramic for work, I want to make it goal to create SOMETHING by the end of week.

2. Host another craft swap- I miss doing these terribly! I did the Christmas one with my friend Nicole from Kitsch Empire last year, but things were so crazy for at the time I really didn't get to enjoy it as much as I wanted and I felt rushed to get my gift finished. I would love to do a Valentine's Swap in 2016!

3. Make a quilt- I have been wanting to learn to do quilting and patchwork forever and, while I have done a few patchwork projects, I want to make an actual quilt!

4. Make a t-shirt quilt- I buy t-shirts sometimes compulsively. Some people have butt loads of band t-shirts or shirts with funny sayings on them, but you're involved in roller derby in any way you acquire A LOT of league and tournament t-shirts. I really don't want to just dump any of them at Goodwill and hardly ever wear some of them, so, t-shirt quilt to the rescue!

5. Read 12 books- In the last year, I think I have read 3 books. Maybe 4? I think I can feel my brain deteriorating inside of my skull.

6. Get a new tattoo- This is on my list every year! I can’t help it. It will never not be on my list.

7. Visit a national park- While I did grew up near the Everglades, visiting National Parks has been on my wishlist for a longgggggg time. Now that I live in Texas, visiting places like Utah or Colorado is easier and more affordable.

8. Become a level 3 certified WFDTA Non Skating Official- This year I was honored to become a Level 2 Certified Non Skating Official with the Women's Flat Track Derby association. This time next year, I hope to be applying for level 3. 

9. Officiate 50 roller derby games- So far my record has not exceeded 41. I did match that this year with another 41, so next year I'm raising the bar and setting a new goal for myself of 50.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Like Mother Effin' Phoenix

Well hey. How are ya? If anyone is still checking or reading this.....

I have returned to the interwebs for creative output, inspiration, venting, and all those good things that I have missed. I started this blog right before I moved to Boston because I was broke, trying to earn income via Etsy, and survive while my boyfriend (now husband) conquered law school. Once we returned to Florida and I invested in a paint your pottery studio along with a business partner. It seemed like my need for a creative pursuit as my main source of income had been met. I achieved my dream job and thus gave up on most other creative pursuits. Well, some time has passed and now I'm starting to feel a little differently about things. It's funny...I own a creative based business and people love to say things like "I would love to work here and paint all day!" That is not at all what I do. My job is paying bills, marketing, cleaning, scheduling, responding to e-mails. My job owning an art studio allows me the opportunity to create very little art. I've been okay with that because the studio is designed to help the Non Artist have a great experience. Forty-somethings who nervously laugh and say "oh I can't even draw a stick figure" can come to my store, have a great time, and take home a little memento from the whole thing. I love that. I really, really love that. BUT it has officially stopped being enough for the creative part of my brain to try and live vicariously through my customers. Don't get me wrong! I still absolutely have the best job ever, but I've been doing some thinking. Analyzing my life. My priorities. Trying to figure out what direction to take. In some ways, so much of my life is already figured out. I'm happily married, I have a business that I'm passionate about, I have a supportive family, I have an amazing hobby of being a roller derby official that has brought wonderful people into my life. Things are pretty sweet overall. But then there's the little things. Creative projects, how I spend my free time, the space that I live in. In the grand scheme of life and the universe and all that crap, something like sewing place mats and decorating your apartment is bullshit. However, as trivial as it may be, those little creative pursuits fill the gaps and make me happy. So, I've decided to return to MAKING. Drawing more. Painting more. Sewing more. Decorating more. Writing more. Blogging more. Doing more of the things that I miss and I love.

So I'm back. Here's the shortest summary ever of the last 2 years of my life.

I got married. Also, this is the best wedding photo ever.
My business partner and I purchased Go van Gogh and rebranded it. The new store is called Craft Haus! It's beautiful and I love it so much! Check it out 
My sweet little baby big is nice, big hog now.
Oh yeah! And we moved to Austin, TX. I don't know how often I will end up posting, but I'm excited. I'm excited to make and to share.

See you in a bit!