Archive for the ‘Sew-licious’ Category

Lately, In Pictures

June 9, 2012

I’ve been having fun taking lots of pics lately, which I share on Instagram. Here are the highlights:

I did some late night sewing earlier this week. I’ll upload a pic of the finished product, which was cute but wonky.
Late-night sewing

Blowfish’s recent blog blitz definitely got my attention. That coupled with a 25%-off coupon got me to buy these sandals. They are very comfortable but waaaay higher than I’m accustomed to so I’m a bit precarious. I already turned my ankle once, proving that I’m not meant to wear high shoes.

At a recent appointment, the vet told me he recognizes some signs of senility in Abby. That hadn’t occurred to me but does explain some odd behavior. After bawling, I put on a smile and am just trying to make her remaining time happy.

Lovely hydrangeas I spotted while yard salin’ last weekend:

Flea market find I’m wishing I’d splurged on:

A beautiful fountain in an Indy neighborhood I love:

Huhuhuhuhuhuhuhuh _in rear_
Sale in rear


Tinkle Tale

May 20, 2011

Last weekend I was humbled by the indelicate task of retrieving a specimen of Abby’s urine. I’m sharing this because if you’ve been a reader for even a short time, you know how glamorous my life is and this is no doubt the kind of captivating story that keeps you coming back. Normally the patient, experienced vet techs get urine samples but Abby went on strike and refused to pee. She was probably mad because she thought we were merely taking a walk, when instead we were going to the vet. It’s right across the street from my apartment so we stroll over as it’s easier than loading her into the car, where she pants and chirps and sheds 10 layers of fluff. Now we’ve taken the walk enough times that she knows a certain direction equals vet time so the next time we go, I’ll probably have to tie a piece of bacon to a string and hang it in front of her face to coax her.

You’re probably wondering how one retrieves urine from a hound, so let me tell you. The vet gave me a fancy plastic tray with lots of convenient little divots for urine to pool in. You simply follow your pup and in one swift movement, thrust the tray under her booty as she expels. Because I’m a hard-headed eejit, I didn’t think that would work and why would I assume that experts knew what they were talking about anyway? Instead I tried shoving the tray in from the side. I anxiously pulled it out from under her to find only a few strands of booty fluff. This happened on a morning when a phone company technician was parked right by the potty area. The look he gave me as I performed the odd ritual made my face burn with humiliation.

The next morning I tried again using the technique the vet tech suggested. I had to sort of lift Abby’s big fluffy tail to get the tray positioned properly. She turned her head around and looked at me like, “What in God’s name are you doing woman?” but happily filled the tray with revolting pools of pee pee. I was so excited that I jumped up but then remembered the shame I’d felt the day before when I was being watched. I calmly looked around and saw no witnesses, after which I skipped inside to pour the specimen into a cup.

The reason I needed to collect urine was Abby had been begging to go out over and over, even when she’d already done her business. I thought she might have a UTI but the specimen revealed no problems. No doubt she was just torturing me for her own amusement.

This post can’t just be about piss so I’ll also mention that I went to the fabric store last week and was shocked to find that it had been totally renovated. I hadn’t been literally in months because I decided not to allow myself to buy anymore fabric until I used some of my stash. Still, I feel like I should’ve been notified about the changes and sent a detailed layout of the new floor plan so I could study it and not feel so at odds in what normally feels like home. The reason I broke my fabric store fast was to get embroidery floss for this adorable pattern, which I plan to hang in my bathroom. I’ve only ever cross stitched but the pattern Web site has great how-to videos so I’m excited to give it a whirl.

Edited to add: I feel compelled to come clean and tell you that I also bought fabric at the fabric store. I had seen this adorable pear print on Flickr & just couldn’t resist. And it was on sale! Do you see now why I can’t go often?

Pear Fabric

Even In My Sleep

January 21, 2011

I woke myself up this morning trying to entertain people in my dreams with a George Costanza witticism but for the life of me, can’t remember which one. (You know you watch Seinfeld reruns a lot when…) It wasn’t one of my faves, which is in the episode when the gang can’t find Kramer’s car in a mall parking garage. Jerry says you should always carry a pen so you can write down where you’re parked and George says “I can’t carry a pen. I’m afraid I’ll puncture my scrotum.” HA!

I’ve been sewing a lot lately and have 2 iron burns to show for it. One of them is especially nasty and in a very conspicuous place on my arm. The problem stems from my tiny sewing/laundry/world domination planning room. It only has one electrical outlet and it’s not conveniently located. I’ve been too triflin’ to get an extension cord so I’d been keeping my iron at an odd angle, whereby I often brushed dangerously close to it, singeing my poor dermis TWICE before realizing something needed to be done. Juggling all my sewing and crafting paraphernalia in that tiny room is a constant battle, one I hope to win soon in an ultimate showdown. I’ve been avoiding it because it will involve going through all of my fabric and supplies, purging, and re-organizing, which won’t be a picnic given how much crafty stuff I’ve amassed. I sort of did that to a lesser extent when I moved into my current apartment but it’s time to dig deep and honestly confront my vice. I plan to take before, during, and after photos so stay tuned for many opportunities to mock me.

I had Monday off for MLK Day so I went on a shopping trip with some friends from Bloomington, one that we’d literally been planning, canceling, and rescheduling for years. In an irony that’s not lost on me, I bought more fabric while whining about my burn. I also found an air horn at a random dollar store. I thought it might be too good to be true, so I just bought one to test. It works perfectly and now I plan to buy hundreds more to use as inappropriately as possible. Get some earplugs, is what I’m saying, especially if I’m ever responsible for waking you up.

Happy New Year!

January 5, 2011

You know those bloggers who care for 2 beautiful kids, decorate their walls in lovely photos, exercise regularly, and still find time to churn out interesting blog posts every day? HOW DO THEY DO IT? It seems like it’s always feast or famine around here. My crushing perfectionism doesn’t help but I’ve made progress in not letting it hinder me. Still I struggle a lot with comparing myself to others. It’s a sickness really and sometimes I let it consume me. I have to be hyper-vigilant about reminding myself that my journey is just that – my own and the rate at which I’m progressing and reaching my goals may not be the same as others. (Moose’s recent post along these same lines made my heart smile.)

And speaking of baked goods, it’s been really difficult to avoid sugar this holiday season but I made it with a bit of white knuckling. The final challenge was at work last week when someone made a HUGE spread for a birthday party. There was a multi-layer chocolate cake rotten with delicious-looking icing and a huge blackberry cobbler. I had to refuse the sweets several times while being shot looks implying the terrorists are winning when I don’t eat cake. I ended up nibbling on crackers and jealously wondering how some people can breezily enjoy sugar in moderation.

Boy, this post is sounding sort of bitter and I didn’t mean for it to. It’s a new year after all and I have high hopes. Also I’ve been crafting up a storm lately, which I’m thoroughly enjoying. (You can see the fruits of my labor here.)

Felt wreath Shark Week Bag
Zipper Pouch Cooking with ♥ Mustaches

More goodies to come, including a new masthead and the 2010 MymBOs! (Take a peek at last year’s for a recap.)

For Sabbath

November 4, 2010

Day 4 of SchloMoBlowHole is the perfect time for me to own up to something → I fail at unpacking. In fact the luggage from my recent trip to Chicago is currently strewn across my bed, along with one lingering bag from my trip to MOwhich was back in September. It’s just seemed easier to select clothing from my luggage instead of the tremendously laborious task of transferring the clothes back to my closet. Such are the mysterious of the gelatinous blob that is my psyche.

Lean’s birthday was last week so I made her a special pressie. A few months ago, her dear sweet cat Sabbath died. He was the alpha of her then 4-kitty litter, a quiet but steadfast ruler with a level head and lustrous black fur. The loss was especially difficult because Sabbath was the first kitty she ever had the pleasure of serving. Our critters are very important to us so I wanted to make her something to remember him buy and tried my hand at some simple appliqué:

Gift for Lean

The E is crooked and I should’ve used darker thread on the cat but Lean loved my masterpiece’s “hand-did” aesthetic, which put a smile on my face. We miss you Sabbers!

Not Freezing My Credit Cards Just Yet

January 29, 2010

Have I mentioned that I don’t like shopping? It somehow triggers a convergence of my neuroses and I find myself loathing every minute. I go to great lengths to get in and out with a minimum of muss and fuss. And so last week, when I finally made it to the checkout after an especially big haul, I was ready to abandon my cart and run screaming from the store. I started loading my things onto a rickety conveyor belt and when I picked up a package of q-tips from my cart, its cardboard lid fell off and q-tips spilled everywhere. The look on the cashier’s face told me that had we been in the wild, he would’ve chased me a short distance, followed by mauling me and defiling my carcass all while a British gentleman narrated the kill in a tense, hushed voice.

The exception to my anti-shopping rule is of course fabric and craft stores. I can spend hours in one, completely unaware of the passage of time, finally emerging with a maniacal grin on my face and my clothes covered in multi-colored threads from the 70 bolts of fabric I sorted through. Although I love that kind of shopping, packing and moving last year forced me to come to grips with how much crafty accoutrement I had accumulated. My fabric stash was especially shameful, given I’d only been sewing for a few years. And so in 2009, I banned any craft and fabric purchases. I stuck to my guns too, except for 2 yards I bought at IKEA in Chicago.

Most recently, this easy-peasy tute got me knitting again. I just finished a hat for myself and am working on one for Moxy to match the scarf I knitted her last Christmas. But when I ran out of yarn the other night and had to go to Jo-Ann Fabric after such a long absence, I wondered if I might experience some sort of sensory overload and pass out in the remnants bin. Fortunately I left with only a skein of yarn and a pom-pom maker and so perhaps I’ll narrowly avoid a guest appearance on Hoarders after all.

Someone Please Check My Math Before My Brain Explodes

August 20, 2008

I’m using this pattern to make a purse for a friend but the pattern pieces seemed a little small so I printed them at 120%. I also have to increase the dimensions referenced in the pattern by 120% and I think I’ve done the figurin’ correctly but can you confirm that I’m not using some little-known form of Appalachian *stomps foot* naught-from-naught-is-naught Math? Theeenks!

  • 3″ x 8.5″ → 4.2″ x 11.9″
  • 3″ x 10.5″ → 4.2″ x 14.7″
  • 3″ x 20″  → 4.2″ x 28″
  • 4.5″ x 4.5″ → 6.3″ x 6.3″
  • 6″ x 16″  → 8.4″ x 22.4″

Revised Math by authority of Amy’s Mom:

  • 3″ x 8.5″ →3.6″ x 10.2″
  • 3″ x 10.5″ → 3.6″ x 12.6″
  • 3″ x 20″ → 3.6″ x 24″
  • 4.5″ x 4.5″ → 5.4″ x 5.4″
  • 6″ x 16″ → 7.2″ x 19.2″

Look right? Thank you, dear reader, for elucidating mah ciphers!

Just Because You Can’t See the Bullets Doesn’t Mean They’re Not There

July 7, 2008

I have a terrible headache, which is especially unfortunate because I never get headaches. EVER…but today I have one and it’s bad. This is shaping up to be a riveting post!

Question for Indy folks: Where is a good place to go berry pickin’? I remember childhood berry-picking excursions and one in particular because my Mom wore light pants and sat on a great big strawberry, which left a lovely mark on her booty.

How was your holiday weekend? I think I need to take a few days off because by Saturday I was already dreading going back to work on Monday. It’s not that I don’t enjoy my work – I just have a general malaise in many parts of my life right now. Luckily Le Ennui was temporarily relieved on Friday when I saw Hancock. I was very pleasantly surprised. It was quite funny and entertaining and who doesn’t love a chance to watch Jason Bateman in action for a few hours?

This tutorial is tricking me into thinking I can make a skirt. Clothes-making has always seemed far too daunting for my sphere but I think I may actually make a go of it. I’d love a white eyelet skirt but that fabric wouldn’t be very forgiving. Given my track record of imprecise seams and mid-project fevers during which I do things like sew the opening of a purse closed, I need a more merciful fiber so I think I’ll choose a fun knit. Maybe navy?

Putting the “Log” Into “Blog”

July 2, 2008

I hate to cop out, but in order to easy my transition from tight-lipped recluse to blabbermouth blogger, I may have to employ the bullet format. And so it shall be!

  • Right off the bat, can someone please give me permission to get this necklace? I don’t really need it but I sure do want it.
    • In the interest of full disclosure, I should mention that I just got these earrings.
  • I used Blue Bird Baby’s easy-peasy tutorial to make this purse:Apron purse
    I added a few inches to the dimensions ’cause I like big bags although it sure is a pain in the ass when I can’t find my keys. Why don’t I do something sensible like always putting them in same place? Nope – too practical.
  • And speaking of bags, my Dad and I donated to Obama’s campaign last week and he ordered an Obama tote for me ’cause he knows what a bag fiend I am. Sweet, huh?
  • The girls and I watched Annie Hall a few weekends ago. I had never seen it but it looks like dating hasn’t changed much since then. It was cool to see such a young Diane Keaton in her sassy masculine duds.
  • I made a YUMMY vegetable casserole last week based on this recipe. I skipped the tortillas, cottage cheese, and feta and just combined everything else. I sauteed the onion, zucchini, and mushrooms first. The results were DELICIOUS but next time I won’t include avocado because when cooked, it tasted like eggy poo.
  • This week I made this chickpea salad recipe but pared it down to just chickpeas, kalamata olives, lemon juice, red-wine vinegar, olive oil, and oregano. And a little tip I’ve learned is to rinse the chickpeas really well whenever they’re canned. Otherwise they have an ucky, tinny flavor.
  • My girls are leaving town for the holiday, so it will probably be a low-key weekend for me. I can report that I’ve also been hanging out with a VERY sweet gentlemen friend.
  • Boys are smelly.
  • Why is it that even at the advanced age of 31, I still act like a teenager when my boss goes out of town? Just the thought of the potential long lunches and opportunities to hoard office supplies gets me giddy!

The Jeans That Will Never Die

May 11, 2008

A few years ago, my Mom gave me a pair of jeans that didn’t fit her anymore. She’s a few inches taller than me so they were a little long but fit well otherwise. I asked her to cut them off into capris, which she did and I wore them for several years. I noticed at the beginning of the year that they were getting pretty threadbare. I bought a denim patch to try and salvage them but eventually had to accept the inevitable truth that the jeans had had their day in the sun and were ready to go to the big consignment shop in the sky. There were certain patches of denim that were still good though, so I cut out those bits of fabric thinking I might use them in a future project.

Last week, I decided to use Pink Penguin’s tute to make my Mom a Mother’s Day present. I didn’t have any linen so I used the denim instead:

Patchwork Basket

It’s a little smaller than I would’ve liked, but that’s only because I’d never done any patchwork before and I made my seams too big. Still, I like the way it turned out and I love that the jeans will live on, having borne the booties of two Floofenheimers. Seculo seculorum!

P.S. Wow, you guys didn’t give Ashlee Simpson any love! I’m not a big fan of hers, but I do like that ditty. How ’bout some Shins instead? Sea Legs is one of my favorite songs from their last album: