Friday, May 22, 2009

Mad for Madsen

How awesome is this bike? You can carry whatever you want in it's super huge bucket. Including children. Man, I want one.... Check out their website at: MADSEN Cargo Bikes

Thursday, May 21, 2009


YAY! YAY! YAY! My dress was selected as a finalist for the ASG Simplicity Creativity Contest! Now I've just gotta mail it in and wait to hear if it wins!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

NYR #12, Cushions for Friends

As I said in my last post, I put Curtain Week 2009 on hold while I recovered cushions for my friend from church. As you can see from the picture above, all of the cushions were pretty faded and on some the cording had separated from the side.
This cushion had DEFINITELY seen better days! So I recovered the couch cushions in the pretty stripe below. For the record, this family lives in a FABULOUS old house by the water in Annapolis. Their front porch is large with a deep red floor, white pillars and a light blue painted ceiling.
For the two side chairs and ottoman, I made cushions from the fabulous medallion patterned fabric below. And in my opinion, when I dropped them off last night, they looked AMAZING on the porch.
What? What's that? You say you want to see pictures of the actual cushions?! That would mean you were thinking I would actually remember to take pictures of a completed project. How silly! Seriously though, I COMPLETELY forgot to take a picture of the cushions once they were on the chairs/couch. Perhaps it's because I used too many brain cells to figure out how to get the stripes to line up correctly on the couch. SORRY! I will try and get over there again soon and take a picture for you to see!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009


Curtain Week 2009 is being postponed as I have just been commissioned to recover a stack of outdoor cushions for a friend from church. They need to be done in a matter of weeks so I've gotta give them top priority. I'll keep you posted.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Curtain Week 2009!

Confession time. I never finished the final curtain panel for the other window in our bedroom (this picture only shows one window). And although I've had the fabric for Rock's curtains since before he was born, those aren't done either. And I've never hemmed the curtains in our living room.
So, I've declared the first week of May (starting Monday, the 4th) CURTAIN WEEK 2009!!! Getting these projects done will be my NYR #12. I'll report next Saturday on how I do.

Friday, May 1, 2009

NYR #11, Pepper and Salt Dress

So, awhile ago, I told you that I had joined the American Sewing Guild (ASG). I did this for many reasons, but one main reason was to make myself eligible for the ASG Creativity Contest. Each year, ASG partners with Simplicity Pattern Company to put on a sewing contest. Together they select nine of Simplicity's patterns for you to pick from to create a one-of-a-kind outfit. While you can only use these patterns, they encourage you to "adjust, adapt, and embellish" as you please.
Although you are allowed to make multiple items or even mix and match different pieces from different patterns, I chose to just focus on making one great dress. I chose Pattern #2939, pictured above, but with all the adjusting, adapting and embellishing I did, I essentially created my own new pattern.
To maximize on the design of my fabric, I added a waistband and added length (for mommy-appropriate modesty) and width (to allow for some topstitched pleats and to get the stripes to line up nicely on the side seams) to the skirt. I also moved the bust dart so it wouldn't interfere with the stripes on the fabric.
I highly recommend the Readers Digest's Complete Guide to Sewing. It helped me conquer my fear of zippers (tried once before with disastrous results) and I even sewed a LINING in this dress (a completely new experience)!
In order to jazz up the fabric, I sewed reverse tucks that brought the stripes closer together and gave the graphic stitching a softer, almost lacy feel. Above is a photo where the fabric has been modified (see the shots below of the back of the dress to get a feel for the unmodified fabric). This was perhaps the single most time-consuming aspect of constructing this garment.
Here's the ruffle before I sewed it down. Please forgive my unfortunate looking ironing board, I plan to recover it sometime in the near future. Anyway...
Here's the end result! And please forgive my unfortunate bits of arm flab. Now that I don't have this dress to make, maybe I should do a few arm exercises.
It's a stylish frock I can dress up or down for any summer occasion!
A closer look at the front...
And the back.
See how the stripes are further apart? This is because I didn't tuck the back fabric.
Bring on Summer -- I've got a dress that's ready to go!!!
p.s. I'll let you know how the contest turns out if/when I hear from Simplicity. Best case scenario, I get some cold hard cash, a SERGER and five free patterns of my choice from Simplicity. Worst case scenario, I have a cool sundress and I'm an ASG member. It's a win-win situation!