Wednesday, April 25, 2012

A new mate for the Makena Collection

I love special requests! It's so easy for any designer to get in a mode of only seeing what they're seeing and some input from another set of eyes is always welcomed! I had a gal email me, she has twins. Oh, twins are always such fun reqeuests...double the fun! She wanted them to semi-match and could we mix things up a bit from the Makena dress that she liked.
So we came up with this new colorful version. I posted awhile back about it and have had a few requests to continue to make it so have decided to keep it listed in my shop! You can now find this in my Etsy store.
Aren't they sweet together?

And even sweeter when worn!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Envelope Pillow Tutorial - Simple and quick!

This project started out a little like this. "Mom, the stools in our kitchen hurt my butt, I really don't like them. I wish we still had our old ones." In my most sympathetic tone..."that's too bad, I like how these look in our kitchen. I like those rush seats!"

Well, once one kid lodged a complaint, it wasn't long before the others chimed in and soon they were snagging pillows from the couch and sitting on them. At that point, I waved the white flag and told them we'd make a stool cushion for each of them so I thought I'd write a tutorial alongside me doing the project because these are so simple and fast.

I've had lots of pillows over the years and for some reason, it's the one thing I can't seem to throw away. I always tell myself I'm hoarding saving them for the pillow forms inside and may use for a future project. I'm not holding onto old junk, just trying to embrace the reduce, reuse and recycle mantra!

I started out by finding some home dec weight fabric that I had on hand and then cut away the prior cover on my pillows that were stained and dated colors that used to be in my house. I selected home dec since the kids were going to be sitting on them but you can use anything you like. My prior pillow had the trim sewn straight into the seam of my pillowform cover so I ended up just cutting that all off too. I was left with just the filling but it was still somewhat shaped, we can work with that! If that's what you run into, don't throw it away, you're good. My piece is 16" square so if yours is bigger, just adjust your fabric cuts accordingly.

Again, my pillow inserts are 16" square so I cut my piece at 16" then I turned it and cut it again while on the fold so it was 20" across or 40" across when unfolded. **I like my pillows to be nice and taut when stuffed so I cut them at 16" for that initial cut. If that makes you nervous, cut it at 16 1/2". You will sew with a 1/4" seam allowance and will be fine getting it to fit in.

Along the short side, fold your raw edge 2 times and press down so that you are left with no raw edge. Stitch this edge down and repeat on the other short side.

Now lay your big rectangle piece print side facing up and fold your short sides in so that the width is 16" which is what my pillow form is. Your pieces will overlap several inches for your opening.
This is what you want because when the pillow is stuffed it will pull apart at that open seam and with the overlap you will not see your pillow insert or stuffing. Pin on both sides along the open edges.

Stitch down each side using a 1/4" seam allowance.

Turn your piece right side out, pushing out all the corners and give it a nice iron.

Stuff in your insert or fiberfill stuffing, whatever you are using.

Ta-Da! You are done and that literally took me about 10 minutes...15 because I stopped and took a few pictures along the way. My kids are happy, no more groans when they eat breakfast in the morning. Can you tell I made these weeks apart? One still poofy because it was just completed, one has been flattened from being sat on! Am I loving these here on my kitchen stools? Well, this is one of those design compromises I made with the kids. After all, it's their home too!

Such an easy project for even a novice sewer or something to try with your child who might want to make one for their room. Such a fast way to change the look in your home. If zippers scare you, then ease into pillows and try these. Easy to make and I made 2 pillow covers for less than $10.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Breathing new life into something OLD!

My fascination for things that feel old, things that have a history, a story and maybe even from another country continues on. I hope to write a bit about my trip to Round Top very soon. I still am in awe that it is miles upon miles of fields filled with vendors selling their treasures. I say treasures with a bit of a chuckle! There were a few spaces with some items that had me scratching my head wondering, who in the heck is taking these home! Anyways, more about that full trip later because one can write forever once you realize that Round Top actually spans a few cities and there are more amazing things to look at over at Marburger and truly the best deals over in Warrenton. Live in the central Texas area or Southeast over by Houston? This is a must visit and a great girls or mom and daughter trip!

One of my favorite finds has to be this set of chairs that I picked up. I've had cane back chairs on my brain for quite some time after finding inspiration from this pin on Pinterest, from blogs I follow and magazines I love to browse.

I met Kara from Atlanta who is just precious and I loved her booth. Her business name is Junkology. Oh how I wanted to change her name because the word junk just doesn't come to mind as I looked at all the gorgeous things she had. I get it though, these things were probably earmarked for Goodwill before someone decided to give them a new life. I love how she didn't paint the cane and just brightened the stain giving it that beautiful contrast I wanted.

Love the color paint that was used. The chairs have a creamy warmth to them without being harsh white. Chairs were painted in Annie Sloan chalk paint in the Old Ochre color.

Loved the perfect amount of sanding she'd done over the carved detail. Okay, now I have 2 chairs, my table seats 6. The hunt continues.

Why am I looking for new chairs? I bought a gorgeous trestle table awhile back for our breakfast room and figured, I'll start the hunt for chairs to go with it later. Well, fast forward a year plus and the same chairs have been sitting around it that are shown above! My ADD took over, and as much as I disliked the black and woodstained chairs that I had sitting around it that matched the table that had been there prior, we've used them for quite a while. They're sturdy, they're functional, they work. I wanted something lighter and airy, the black needs to go and I wanted the styling to look a bit older, a little bit Frenchy. Is that a word?

Well, this site was something that gets a little eye roll from the hubby when he comes home from work. He practices tolerance with my methods. It screams, did you just bring your grandmother's furniture home and put it in our garage? This is my Craigs List find. These chairs are so well made and sturdy and the cane is intact. Isn't Craigs list the best? In an effort not to spend a ton of money, I searched there since nice chairs can set you back quite a bit. If you have the endurance to search, you can find some amazing things others are done with. I see some paint and some new upholstery and my new chairs will soon be seated around my table. I can't wait to see this project come to the end and share photos!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Heading to Round Top TX

Oh my, you cannot even imagine the excitement I'm feeling right now. I hope I can snap some pictures and share this exciting and fun treasure hunting trip! I've never been so about to put a check mark next to this other bucket list item that has been on my must do list for years.