Monday, December 12, 2011

Making Room for Baby - Part 2 The Progress and Diaper Bag

Things are coming along with Trent's room.  Babe started painting the room, I finished his quilt and it is ready to be bound and I finally got the diaper bag done.  So here are the pics:

The Cars fabric is an Anne Kelle by Riley Blake as are the argyle prints and a couple of others.  The pattern is Turning Twenty Again and backing is a minky type soft and comfy plush fabric.  Just a sneak peak here, more to come.

Front pocket view with the flap up.

The diaper bag fabric is Dandy Damask by Michael Miller. I love it.  I was a little leery about having so much white on the bag, especially the lining, but it is made from PUL (stands for polyurethane laminated fabric) and is waterproof which makes it a popular fabric for cloth diapers.  Plus I wanted something that I liked so I could continue to carry the bag even after he didn't need one anymore.  This bag is for me thank you very much - it just has his stuff in it!  Don't worry - the hubs has a different bag that he will carry!
Inside shot of side with 2 pockets.

Inside shot of side w/ 3 pockets

Back of bag, zippered pocket.

See the strap around the diapers in the middle pic above?  That is my cute little diapers strap that I will post about later.

Despite my excitement about the way the bag turned out - there were a few snags along the way.  First, my good ole Singer broke down as a I neared the end of the bag construction.  I was beside myself.  I've had this sewing machine since college and had never had any problems with it until recently. So the plan was while in the hospital with the baby, hubs was going to drop it off at the shop for a tune up.  I have two other machines that I inherited that need to be tuned up and repaired so that will be on my list to do in early 2012 - so if this ever happens again I have a back up and I need to upgrade to a new machine anyway.  I spend a lot of time sewing so I need something of quality with more bells and whistles.  I think my pedal went out so between replacing that and a tune-up, hopefully my problem will be solved.  The problem is when am I going to get my machine back and how much is it going to cost me? 

So what did I do?  My mom is a quilter as well so I just borrowed one of her machines.  She has a fairly new Brother that she hasn't been using (she prefers her older machine as well), At first I broke a few needles until I finally got it threaded right.  The PUL fabric was also thick which made going over double layers difficult where seams met but I got through them after doubling back.

The tutorial for this bag can be found here.  It is pretty easy to follow - even if you are not really a visual learner - like me. I prefer my instructions in words with pictures to clarify.  At times I wasn't sure I was doing it right but I kept going and everything turned out great.  The only thing I would do differently is add some interfacing to the flap.  Its a little floppy but it probably won't make much difference once I start putting stuff in it!  I put a couple of layers of Scotch Guard on it so it is good to go!  Thanks for stopping by!

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Be blessed,

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Making Room for Baby Part 1 - Before and the Plans

Well, time got away from me and our little bundle of joy is here!  Trenton Anthony arrived on Thursday, Nov. 17 at 5:20 p.m.  He weighed 7 lbs. 2 oz.  I will post more about his arrival later and tell you how I went to work anyway even though I knew I was in labor!    Three weeks prior to his arrival, I had done absolutely nothing to the nursery since my daughter last occupied it 3 years ago - she has been in her big girl room since she was two.  So here is what we were dealing with:

As you can see this was pretty much a catch all of sorts over the last three years.  So besides clearing out the clutter I have to revamp for a boy.

I did quite a lot with her room.  She had a little wall art, an accent wall and I had some basic decorations including her own bedding set and quilt that I made for her.  So, what to do for this baby? I must say - boys are harder to decorate for.  My hubby is the first boy I have ever lived with so to say I don't know anything about boys is an understatement.  I do have three nephews but I'm still somewhat clueless.  So this will be my first effort in decorating a room for a boy's taste.  So here are the fabrics I have chosen so far for his quilt and crib bedding.

I saw the car fabric on Etsy in various shops but when I saw it in a grouping with the chocolate argyle - I was sold.  My hubby loves argyle so I thought that would be a neat accent for the room.  So here is a list of things I plan to do for the nursery:

  • make crib quilt
  • 5 more receiving blankets (I have a few from Laila that were gender neutral that will reuse) - done
  • recover that hideous tan glider
  • Paint the room (leaning toward ice/turquoise blue and chocolate - hubs job!) - done
  • Make a new diaper bag for me - done
  • make a diaper clutch - done
  • make a nursing cover - done
  • make a little box pleated bag to hold diaper bag essentials
  • make buy a window treatment for the nursey
  • make a tummy time quilt (basketball fabric or blue and brown polka dots)
  • Make a car seat cover (Michael Miller Fabric) - done
  • Curtains for Laila's room - ok so this is not baby related but I really want to get them done soon 
And this is simply a list of stuff I want to make.  I'm not even talking about washing all the hand me down clothes we have been blessed with, reorganizing the closet and the other nesting things that need to be done still.  But I am feeling motivated and have been knocking stuff off the list.  So even though he has arrived, some of these projects will simply turn into maternity leave projects.  I will update as I get things done and post pics of completed projects and tell you where I got my inspiration. Stay tuned...

Be blessed,

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

First Furniture Redo - Desk Chair

I bought this sad looking little chair from a fave thirft store near where I grew up.  (sorry I didn't get a true "before" pic) I remember going there regularly as a child with my dad to buy "play clothes" - clothes we could wear when we weren't going anywhere to just bum around the house in.  Play clothes usually consisted of sweats and t-shirts and shorts.  I think Dad was trying to help us avoid Mom's wrath and messing up our school clothes.  But I digress...

Anyway, I was taking a class at University of MO - St. Louis in the summer of 2009, which is right down the street and decided to pop in Value Village before heading home one day.  I got the chair for $4 and planned to refinish it for my sewing room.  Well, my daughter started kindergarten this year, and all during preschool we worked with her at home, at the dining room table, on her writing.  After one too many scratches on my table, I was on a mission to get her a desk for her room.  We found this desk for $30 at Goodwill and just repainted it a different shade of white and changed the knobs.  Not too happy with the knobs but I just wanted to get it functional.  Sorry - no before pics on that one but you will see it completed in a sec.

But for this chair I wanted to do something a little more eye popping.  So after scoring this great fabric from Discount Decorating Outlet for only $2.99 a yard,  (I had never really done a happy dance in a store until that day. )   I bought 13 yards, planning to use it for curtains (post coming soon on those).  It was also great to meet a fellow Etsian who was cutting and checking me out! Then I decided to give Laila my chair instead of searching for another one - I just really want to get her room finished.  Using the green paint left over from her accent wall, gave it a fresh coat then recovered the seat with this fabric.  I am very pleased with the result and feel inspired to get cracking on the 4 or 5 other pieces I have waiting in the basement for their makeover!

The little one hard at work!
Be Blessed, Corynne

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Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Happy 8th Anniversary

I was a romantic at heart when I was a teenager.  Read romance novels constantly. Couldn't stand a movie unless it had some element of romance.  Didn't get my first REAL boyfriend til college and still had no real clue of what love was until the last 10 years. 

Happy Anniversary to my husband Barry.  We met in middle school, were great friends through high school, lost touch during college but recomnnected because of our 10 year high school reunion in 2001 and married on this day in 2003. Best decision, after accepting Jesus,  I ever made.  Although I know the Lord brought us to each other - I am so glad I had the sense to see he was the one for me and say yes.

Thank you for my daughter and sons.
Thank for you for being a great provider.
Thank you for keeping God first in our home.
Thank you for being a great brother, brother-in-law, son, son-in-law, uncle and grandson
Thank you for being my best friend and showing me what love really is. 

My fave wedding pic!

Our Wedding Party

Love your wife,

Friday, October 14, 2011

Fall Thrifting

I have been on a thrifting kick lately and have scored some pretty neat stuff.  Being 8 months pregnant and the season is changing - I was initially on a mission just to get a couple of long sleeve shirts to get me through til November.  After scoring 2 purple shirts, I swung through the housewares and found some great bowls and plates to add to my collection and create some decorative pedestal stands with.  Check them out.

I just loved these saucers.  I plan to put a little vase or candlestick between them to create mini tiered servers. 
 A glass cheese dome and a compote dish that I will use to make a pedestal.

 Aren't these little glass plates cute?  A lot of people prefer white dishes - I seem to gravitate toward the clear.  Just so many possiblities and they work with any decor. 

Loved these little finger bowls. 

This little compote dish was too cute to pass up. I plan to spray paint the base silver or brushed nickel and use it for candy or mints.

And this little teacup is destined to become a pincusion for my sewing room or to leave upstairs when I am sewing bindings or doing hand work in front of the TV.

As the young lady behind the counter is checking me out and we are discussing my purchases, I spot these beauties nestled inside each other behind the counter on the floor...

When I asked her if they were for sale she said she didn't know but if they were, they shouldn't be behind the counter because they don't hold things for people.  She asked the manager who was standing close by and she said the same thing and asked it I wanted them.  I said sure (I didn't ask how much until afterwards but already knew I wasn't leaving them behind). I love bowls. Turns out the small one was $3 and the large one was $4. According to the date on the sticker, they had just hit the showroom floor that day so it was all about timing - as seems to be the case with all thrifting scores.  So including my two shirts - my total was $23.  Not bad considering my excitement over what I got.

The thrifting bug has hit... and I have a day off to myself next week.  Stay tuned...

Be blessed - Corynne

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Work in Progress

My goal with this feature is to basically show you what I am working on from week to week.Well, I have a lot of projects "in progress" right now so will just share a few because I have MANY!

Whirlgig Quilt

I loved the Bliss line by Bonnie and Camille for Moda. I bought three charm packs back in the spring and had a tutorial for a whirlgig quilt that I really wanted to try. I love pinwheels but sometimes getting those perfect points is a pain so I wanted to try this version of a pinwheel which was to be done with Charm packs. I used the tutorial from here . These are just a few of the finished pinwheels on my-too-small design wall in my not-so-glamorous unfinished basement studio...

While I love how they are turning out - I had a few problems (totally my fault) with the tutorial.  I will blame it on pregnancy brain.  Luckily, I had three charm packs because I totally miscut at least 10 of my charm squares.  Before you can split them into your pinwheels you have to cut off a 1/2 inch from one side of the charms.  I forgot to do this a couple of times and I was cutting more than one block at a time - frustrating!! I also did the same for my white background squares and cut quite a few of those wrong too!  Despite my mess ups I was able to get 36 8-inch blocks done this past weekend and now on to deciding on a setting.  I have quite a few charms left so I will come up with a simply sashed square baby quilt to use them up. Too bad I am having a boy, otherwise this would be the baby room theme fabrics!  I also recently bought a jelly roll of the same fabrics that I can't wait to use. 

Speaking of the baby room, look for a update over the next six weeks on nursery transformation from a little girls garden to a little boys zone. Only six weeks til he is here and it is not fit for a boy - yet!  I will feature before pics and the fabrics I have selected to work with.  Stay tuned...

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Where I'm From

Welcome to my blog!  This has been a long time coming.  I am a writer, yet I have dreaded this first post - mainly because I didn't know how to introduce myself or this blog.  Well, one of the many hats I wear in life is that of teacher.  So I just put on my English teacher hat and thought about the activities I engage my students in at the beginning of the school year in order for them to introduce themselves and for me and their classmates to get to know them better. 

So - I am going to give you my version of the poem Where I'm From by George Ella Lyon.  You can see his version of the poem here. This is something I gave my students at the end of the school year last year but plan to use it at the beginning this year.  Basically, I give them a template of his poem with blanks and they just fill them in based on their own life, family and experiences - creating a unique poem with each new writer.  So hopefully this will give you some insight to who I am and how that has evolved into what you read here.  I hope you like it - enjoy and come back soon.  I have lots of recipes, quilting and crafting projects to share!

Where I'm From
I am from the kitchen sink, from Dawn and
   sweeping the floor while listening to the Quiet Storm
I am from the little house with the car port.
   Conveniently located, noisy, always humming
I am from the hibiscus and peony bushes,
   the chestnut trees whose prickly burrs are still buried in the soles of my feet
I am from choosing fabrics for all the clothes mom made for me, wearing glasses and finger toes
   from Fannie and Faye, totally different, equally admired
I'm from talking loud to be heard above the planes, pack rat tendencies and cooking from scratch.
From get out of the kitchen and I brought you in this world and I will take you out.
I'm from church every Sunday, to the Bible with the creepy pictures on the coffee table
   that we had to sneak to look at.
I am from the souls of black folks, 7-Up Cake and Cha Cha
From sticking a screw up my nose as a toddler and having to get it removed at the ER to the quilts my grandmothers pieced by hand.
Ancestors and memories kept safe in the scrapbook
created by my father to make sure I always know who I am,
where I come from and where I want to go.
 Swinging for the fences.

Daughter Laila and me!

Be blessed - Corynne