The New Sewing Space

| Comments

I haven’t been able to spend much time in my new sewing space, but I took some photos of it so I could share it with you before the baby was born. I didn’t get around to it before Emmerich’s arrival, but it hasn’t changed any from these photos! That happens when a new little person comes into your life. Hopefully someday soon he’ll decide that nap time is awesome, and then I’ll get to sneak in some sewing time. Notice I did not bother to list housework, laundry, or making grocery lists above sewing. I miss creating!


This is what you see when you walk into the room. This was originally supposed to be Rob’s office, buuuuuut, I swiped it! I have more crap than him anyways. This room does not have a closet or a ceiling light. I have a hanging light with a low switch for light (we’ll put in a fixture eventually), and I’ve downsized my fabric stash so that it can all fit in this room. Eventually I want to come up with some sort of thread storage for the wall above my sewing machines. I have an idea in my head that will keep it all organized and also keep it dust-free. We’ll see when that gets done (ha!).


This is how I’m storing all of my fabric and sewing notions. The built in bookcase has been great. I had doubts about being able to fit all of my stuff in this room, but I really wanted to get rid of the big Rubbermaid tubs I had some of my fabric sitting in. Because it was tucked away, I never saw it and I never remembered that I had it, and therefore never used it. The amount of fabric I’ve had sitting in those plastic tubs for the past 5 years was ridiculous.

Studio-6All of my garment fabric yardage is in the white (IKEA) cabinet. I love looking at it all organized and folded up! These green lidded containers hold my quilting fabrics and scrap yardage from past projects. The clear tubs hold patterns and I have one tub of things like elastic, snaps, boning, etc. The top shelf has in-progress projects that need to be completed.


Here’s my favorite, the garment fabric cabinet. I keep quilt batting, fusible interfacing and pressing tools in the cabinet drawers. And there’s my 40 week belly in the mirror! It’s so odd to see this now. How was I ever that huge?!


My little constant companion, Dax, followed me everywhere the last few weeks of my pregnancy. He doesn’t follow me as much right now, but he does love hanging out in this room. I put his bed in the corner since he prefers to sleep in here, and during the day he can often be found hanging out under my desk. I’m glad I chose to put FLOR tiles down in here instead of a large rug. They are bright and cheerful and hide his dog fur quite well! Plus, they are really easy to clean should anything be spilled in here.


My desk corner is quite boring right now. I really need some artwork and curtains in here (that photo is only hung that high because a picture hook was already there)! I’m sure the color will be added with time. Maybe a design wall somewhere, for quilt blocks? I’m not sure yet, but I’m keeping my options open.

Anybody need a good sewing space these days? I’d love to see mine get some use. The only thing you have to do is bring me dinner and hold a baby while I take a nap!

A Little Surprise

| Comments

Hello, hello! I have missed being here, missed being in my studio and missed seeing everyone’s lovely projects online. It has certainly been a whirlwind past few weeks. As you might have guessed, I had my baby! There’s a bit of a twist to this story though…


I was about 3 days overdue and soooo over being huge and pregnant. Rob and I went hiking and I saw my chiropractor to see if we could jump start labor. It worked! It wasn’t exactly smooth sailing though. There were some hiccups with the baby’s birth, but after 41 hours of labor (including 4 hours of pushing!), our beautiful baby was born. However, there was an unexpected twist…

It was a BOY!

Em3Everyone in the room was shocked. They all knew we were expecting a little girl, and I don’t think I’ve ever been at such a loss for words. There’s a pretty great photo from his birth that shows the expression on my face when Rob gasped, shook his head, and announced, “It’s a… boy?!” Not that the photo will EVER see the light of day on the internet, mind you. But it’s hilarious, trust me.


The great part? He’s amazing and the best surprise we ever could have hoped for. I can’t even imagine having a girl now. It was alway supposed to be him, our sweet Emmerich Nicholas. He weighed in at 8 lbs 10.4 oz, and was 22.5″ long. He’s not a tiny baby! He’s grown since his birth on November 11th, and is getting an extra chin and some lovely squishy baby rolls on his thighs.

Em1I have to tell you, he loves his Baby Nest!  It’s really fun to see him using something I made him, since I really didn’t get around to making many other baby items. The little sweater I was knitting? Well, it’s done except for 1″ on the second sleeve, but who knows when I’ll have time to even look at that project again, or if switching around the buttons will make it look more boy-ish.

Em4I’m pretty glad that I didn’t end up making any quilts or baby clothes with the fabrics I’d picked out. It’s almost like my brain knew that my baby wouldn’t really be into a tiny Liberty of London romper or a quilt made with pinks and yellows. I have to rethink everything sitting on my “to be sewn” shelf! I look forward to it though, and making a whole host of cute little boy things!

Also, can I just say how excited I am that I can FINALLY make and wear the Grainline Alder and Linden patterns? YEEESSSSS!


Sewing Hopes vs. Sewing Realities

| Comments


I can’t believe how much I’ve actually gotten done these past three weeks! It’s been a whirlwind around here, for sure. I bet you’re wondering, but no, Baby Girl has not yet made her appearance. I’m not due until this weekend, so fingers crossed she is on time! I’ve been busily scurrying around making food plans, unpacking the rest of the house and I even managed to (somehow) get some sewing done.


I’m so pleased with how her mobile turned out! I mentioned I had it cut out in my last post, but I was a little bit nervous that it wasn’t really going to get done. After spending about three evenings on the couch with a needle and thread, and patiently painting a wooden embroidery hoop with a few coats of white paint, it was finished. It turned out just how I had hoped. And best of all, it was free (besides the spinning music box, which I bought on Etsy for $10). My friend Erica gave me all of the felt and sequins from her stash that I needed to make it.

Of course, when I first started stitching, I wanted it done FAST and I was using a whip stitch on the felt. Umm… no, that was hideous. It look like a 5 year old’s first project. For some reason, I don’t like doing the blanket stitch. It’s always what looks best on felt, but for some reason I thought I could get away with something faster. Don’t be like me, or you’ll have to start over.


The original inspiration mobile can be found here, at Milbot and Chooky. I would have loved to have purchased it from the maker, but it was out of my budget, plus I really wanted to make it myself. I added a few things to this mobile, like tiny clear and silver beads to the clouds. There is also a coordinating color sequin on the very bottom of each raindrop, to hopefully catch a little bit of light when it spins.

Cloud-Mobile-Rainbow-RaindropsOther things I’ve been making? Well, another Swedish Baby Nest! This one is a gift, that has been shipped to its new home.

Swedish-Baby-Nest-FinalJennie, my friend who originally sent me the pattern, had a lot of requests to make a PDF pattern available. I gave her my thoughts on the pattern, and she worked very hard to make and release it recently. You can find it in her Etsy shop, Jagged Rose. She also will be hosting a sew-along on her blog very soon, so if you have babies that need a cuddly place to sleep, pop on over to tell her hello!


I am really pleased with my second baby nest. It turns out that on my first one, I had put on the bias tape incorrectly, which is why it was so hard for me to feed my drawstring into the casing. Following the directions helps a lot! I still chose to quilt the bottom mattress with a grid of squares, and I made the sides more squishy by adding extra fiberfill to the rolled-up batting that you put in the bumper edge. I can’t wait to see my friend’s baby all wrapped up and sleeping soundly in this! I described the nest to my Grandma, and she said, “That sounds lovely. Please make one for me in an adult version.” It’s tempting to do, for sure.

Swedish-Baby-Nest-QuiltedWhile finishing unpacking the rest of my studio, I came across a few patterns that I had every intention of making during my pregnancy, and just never got to. I thought that I would make this really awesome maternity wardrobe, that I would have completed some nursing tops by the time I was 9 months along, and of course I’d get that tote bag done that I wanted to use as a purse/diaper bag.


HA. It didn’t happen. I even bought fabric for that Victory Pattern’s Chloe dress, and I ordered this super-fancy French maternity dress pattern online from Deuxieme Arrondissement. I had visions of making it out of a lovely drapey wool, or a soft chambray. Then we moved, I was exhausted, and I thought, “Why would I use up my energy and fabric stash to sew maternity clothes that I’ll only get to wear for a few weeks?” The dress is still really tempting because it looks super easy to make, but I also would love to save the fabric to make a Grainline Alder with sleeves. I tell you, Jen’s patterns have been driving me nuts. I just want to make and wear them, but this giant belly is kind of getting in the way of those plans.

Maybe I’ll get to the Super Tote soon, but I’m not holding my breath. The reality is that I’m about to have a very tiny person to answer to, who I kind of doubt cares about my sewing time. I’ll take it though. Sniff a sweet newborn head or spend an evening tracing out a pattern? That’s no contest in my book!

Still Life in the New Studio

| Comments

A baby mobile, cut out but not sewn…

MobilePiecesA 500-thread count sheet, soon to be turned into pillowcases…BlueSheetThe only finished project to happen in the last few weeks, knit from leftover yarn I used to making hats for her Dad and uncles…BabysFirstKnitHatA basted quilt, patiently waiting to be quilted and gifted…MachineStillLife

A copy of a beautiful new book that I have a project in and need to share with you…BealBookShelves that are finally full of sewing thread, fabric, buttons and patterns…StudioShelves

I tell you what. Moving and setting up a new working space, house and room for a baby when you’re 9 months pregnant is no easy task. Every day includes at least one nap (if not two, let’s be honest here), and I move at a snail’s pace. It’s getting there though. Up until about a week and half ago, this room was our bedroom while our upstairs floors were being refinished. Rob has worked so incredibly hard to put a fresh coat of paint on everything, clean, put in new outlets… his job list seems to never end. But I am so thankful that he is so handy and such a hard worker, especially at a time when I’m not much help and a lot needs to be done.

I hope to share some house and whole studio photos with you soon! I have one cabinet that needs to be put together for this new space, and then it will feel more complete. But done? What old house is ever done?

A Studio Tour

| Comments

Hello from the land of cardboard boxes! Our move went well, but we are currently living in the downstairs of our new house while the upstairs floors are being redone. It’s a bit stressful to say the least!

The room that will be my future sewing studio is currently functioning as our bedroom. All of my sewing machines are still in boxes and all of my fabric is packed away, but that’s not to say I haven’t opened up a few boxes just to sadly look at fabric that I’m waiting to cut up. Soon, soon!

I took a few photos of my studio at our last house before I packed up everything up for our move. I always love seeing everyone else’s sewing spaces, so I thought I’d share updated photos of my set-up. I really liked working in that space, even if it did get really stinking hot in the summer thanks to having very little insulation! I was able to easily flow from sewing to cutting to ironing, and it was easy to find my fabric and notions on the shelves Rob installed for me.


I still loooove my drafting table/cutting table. It is a great height for standing around and cutting, and being able to reach all sides of a project is key to some of the harder layouts I do on plaids and delicate cuts on chiffon. I’m happy it will fit very well into my new sewing space, because I don’t think I could part with it!


Something that I would like to do for my new studio is to get rid of the IKEA tables that currently house my sewing machines. I’m hoping to talk Rob into building me one long table with strong supports, so that I don’t have table legs to work around. I go back and forth from machine to machine quite often, so being able to easily slide down to the end of the table would be really great.


Two things I won’t miss? The ugly air conditioner and the floor vent. That vent drove me crazy. My chair was constantly getting stuck on it and making a racket.


I will miss sharing a space with Rob (his office was behind that door). I can’t say he’ll miss my constant pestering though! It was hard to stop myself from badgering him with questions and music requests during the day.

Keep your fingers crossed that my new space is ready to be set up soon! Knitting is keeping me busy for the moment, but I’m getting a little bit twitchy about not being able to sew…