Wednesday, December 24, 2014

And to all ........ a good night!

When I was getting ready for the bazaar ....... I went to Facebook and asked what people would like to see for sale.

One of the comments was .... pillowcases.

Pillowcases?!?  Pillowcases are a beginning sewing project!!  You want to see pillowcases?!?

And to be truthful .... every pillowcase I have ever seen sewn was bright, colorful and had super heros on them.  Or Disney princesses.

Not my style.

Soooooooooo not my style!!!

Then ..... one of my friends made one with chickens on it.  Very cute!!!

So ....... I mulled that around in my head.

I checked prices.  Yikes!!!  $10??????  I can't sell pillowcases for $10 each when I buy high thread count beautiful designer quilting fabric!!!  And that doesn't count thread or lace or trims!!!

That did some mulling.

Maybe it was more like stewing.

I then decided that I deserved to sleep on beautiful pillowcases.  And so does everyone else. But they weren't going to be $10 each ........ they were going to be $45 a pair. 

Cuz life is too short to sew with less-than-beautiful fabric.

And I was hooked on a so-called quick and easy project!

NOT!!  OK -- maybe!!

They say done in 15 minutes!

Ha! I say!!

Ha! Ha!  I spend more than 15 minutes at the iron!!!!  (But everyone in my sewing classes know that!!)

The great thing about beautiful pillowcases .... they can brighten a bedroom in no time!

And in this day of white hotel-style sheets ....

a little color in the pillowcases makes a lot of difference in my mood on these gray winter days.

Although ... the bazaar is over and done, I have continued to sew pillowcases.  Some for the shop, some for me, and some for gifts.

And you know ..... when I sleep on these beautifully soft and silky 100% cotton fabrics ..... I feel just like a Disney princess.

Without the juvenile pillowcase!!!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

A Selfie

The weather here in the Midwest was Won-der-ful this weekend!!

It was almost 50 degrees.  You could be comfortable in a sweatshirt.  It kind of smelled like spring.

(Well -- maybe that was because Honey cleaned the chicken coops!)

And then .......... December reared its ugly cold head!

Cold .... wind .... brrrrrrrrr!

And to top it off .......... it drizzled for two days.

Cold .... wind .... wet ...... brrrrrrrrrr!

It is cold today ..... but the sun has come out.

It is cold today ..... but the wind has died down.

It is cold today .... but I decided to hang laundry on the line.

And take a selfie.

I'm not much on taking selfies.  My hair is never neat.  Instead of my normal double chin, I suddenly have triple chins.  And my arms aren't long enough to stretch to get that camera in a spot that I look taller and thinner.

But I took one today.

And I think it turned out pretty cute!


Wow. I might be getting the hang of this selfie thing. 

My arms look really thin!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Epic Fail!

You know those moments when you get something aaaalllllmmmmoooosssstttt done and then.............

you screw it up.


Yep ... it happened.

And it wasn't pretty.

I have made HUNDREDS of tea towels in the last few years.  Occasionally, there will be something that I am not particular happy with .... colors aren't exactly as I saw in my mind.  I could have chosen better stitches for the applications .....but they were still within my standards.

This one ....... NOT SO MUCH.

It is just before Thanksgiving and I am prepping for 30 some people for dinner. 

I decided to wash ALL the bed linen.

Several years ago .... I had dyed my burgundy bedspread bright red.  (You see where this is going, don't you?)

Now ... I had washed this two or three times a year with no ill effects.


So I laundered the bedspread .... tossed it in the dryer ..... and threw a newly embroidered tea towel in the next load in the washer to erase the pattern lines.

And I got this .............


a dingy pink tea towel!  And not a pretty pink at that!!!!  It looks better in the photo than in person.....and it looks bad in the photo!

But there was another consequence to my laundry experience.

I was scared to embroider another tea towel.

I felt like I couldn't ... because I would ruin it.

Now .... we all know that is just stupid!  Absolutely stupid!

I have embroidered hundreds of tea towels with success ... and one failure throws me for a loop?????????

The fear of failure is soooo powerful!

So I grabbed the needles and the floss and a towel ... and did this.

And this ..............

And there is another in the wash now .... and another in the hoop.

So what other very tiny, little failure has held me back????

That fear stuff is powerful!!!!

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

The problems with old houses.............

First of all.............. yea, yea, yea.  I'm back.

Writing and blogging is hard when you have 5 million things running through a teeny tiny little brain.

I survived the bazaar and all of the prep.  I survived teaching four and five classes a week.  And now .... I have had a couple of very down days..... where I took not only one nap but two!!!

I know ..... heaven!

Well ... the bazaar went well.  I had a goal of making enough money to put in the tin ceiling in my kitchen.  We went above and beyond that so I started thinking about a water softener.

A water softener will definitely be needed if we put in a dishwasher.  And it will help with laundry and cleaning and preventing some of the ugly staining on the future sink.  Yea ..... this sink!

A tin ceiling is fun.

A new sink is fun.

But a water softener????

Not. So. Much.

And then ..... I got the bid.

No fun there.  :(

Well water + filtration = no tin ceiling for now.

Yea ... old house problems.  Everything cost more than what you see in  the big box stores.  You can't buy the size, the shape, the style in any store locally. Oh -- you might find a hinge or two at an antique shop.  But buy enough to match two doors???


BUT ........we have made some visible progress.

Remember this picture from July???

Damn!!  I miss having flowers on the porch and green stuff around!  And it is only early December.

It is going to be a looooooooonnnnnnnnngggggggggg winter for Miss Eff!!!

It looks like this now.

What I really want you to see is the storm door. 

Cuz winter supplies like the shovel, kitty litter bucket full of sand, the stack of wood and the boot jack have never once been featured in House Beautiful!

I am sure.

This is one of two custom wood storm/screen doors that I bought several years ago.   This one has languished in the barn for several years.  I could have used a standard door here .... but the other door had to be custom and I wanted them to match.  There are screen inserts but since it is winter ... you get to see the storms. 

I have to tell you .......... I LOVE LOVE LOVE the hardware!!!

The hinges..........

The door latch from the outside..........

The door latch from the inside.........


Yea ... it is these little things that make saving and working toward the improvements soooo worthwhile.

But you don't have to worry.

I won't be showing you pictures of the water softener.