Thursday, May 31, 2007

These Wing Friend

I do love birds! Many of you have noticed my blog could also be read as These Wing Friend. Now that you've found me, you know its The Sewing Friend. But let's talk about birds, there's some pretty hip stuff out there. I found most of this here. Enjoy!

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

I've often wondered why I like sewing so much. I have a lot of reasons (making something from "nothing," stress relief, sense of accomplishment, engaging the mind, skill building) but I think it boils down to connecting to the past and the future. My mom sewed and it reminds me of my happy childhood. I love the history of quilt-making. I enjoy working with my hands to make something, and not just something I'll eat! When you make something, it will remain behind long after we pass. That's why I make quilts for my nieces and nephews, although those early ones won't last because I had no idea what I was doing! However, there is a sense of connectedness and longevity from each project completed. Your "whatever" is out there.

I love vintage sewing stuff. I love rick rack and buttons and lace and ribbon. I inherited these old needle books from my husband's grandmother. I got some shadow boxes and included them with some of her rick rack and a thimble.

They hang on the wall above my sewing machine. I think of her when I sew. She gave me a set of Singer sewing books years before she died. The other day I found a note in one from the early 90s. It was from a girl thanking her for making a scarf to wear over a prom dress. A small thing, but important.

I think you need to have inspiration around you to choose projects that interest you. My love of rick rack has spilled over to baby blankets I make. Here are a few examples:

I also love reproduction prints. Check out the
Repo Depot for some great prints. If you happen upon some fabric that you love, even if you don't have an immediate project in mind, buy as much as you can afford. For me, it's typically 2 yards--enough to make a skirt, shirt, or a majority part of a small quilt. I saw a Scandinavian print on a moderate quality fabric. I loved the colors and print and bought 5 yards (it was cheap!) I knew it wasn't heirloom quality, but I loved it. It inspired my sewing loft (pictures to come when it's clean!), but here are some pillows I made out of it:

The print was a striped fabric and I mitered it to make a square (a project for a later blog!) Even with all the choices out there, the primary colors are still my favorites.

Consider this week an object, picture, fabric swatch, or even music (anyone checked out the latest Maroon5?) that inspires you and set it in your field of vision. If you work with fabric that you love, you'll be more likely to work on it! Projects stuck in baskets don't finish themselves, trust me, I've tried! Let's start and finish something this week!

Saturday, May 12, 2007

We all have different kinds of friends. There's the one who gives great gifts. There's the one who has the best recipes. There's the friend who can find the greatest deals, or the one who is fun to shop with because she doesn't look at the prices. I have friends I run with, friends I eat with, friends I trade babysitting with, and friends I just like to listen to because they make sense.
I've discovered that I'm the "sewing friend." I've found myself mending simple things, making quilts and blankets, and sewing curtains and pillows for friends. I've taught some informal sewing classes to neighbors, but I mostly encourage friends to dust off their sewing machine and try something. I answer questions about sewing or fabric--and I love it.

I'd really like to start blogging on a consistent basis, but time evades me. So, keep checking and I'll get something going this summer 2007. I would like to share sewing projects, including simple gifts, home decor, and clothing.

But my real purpose here is to give you the confidence to try!! What's the worst that could happen? You throw something away and wasted a couple of hours, big deal! Next time you won't. (But a seam ripper is so great, and you can reuse your fabric in another project.)

You can, you can, you can--inspiration is all around us. Check out a couple of websites to whet your appetite for fabric and projecting.

Because seriously, you could make that.