Thursday, December 27, 2007

Super Plants! Er .... Pins!

I scored this vintage Wonder Woman plant pot years ago (I can't remember when/where ... maybe college? maybe even high school). It's a small ceramic pot with an old skool image of Wonder Woman, wielding her lasso and saying, "Super Plants." It's always made me laugh. Up to now, I've always just had it sitting on my desk or shelf and it's been randomly filed with loose change or thumbtacks. I had a brief moment of inspiration last week, though, when I was sewing at my desk. I had a small tomato pin cushion and tossed it aside. It landed in the pot and all of a sudden, the pot's purpose became incredibly clear.

I happened to have some fabric left over from my failed Spaceboy attempt (pictures coming soon) that worked perfectly. I followed the Creative Juice tutorial, though I was initially a little hesitant to hot glue the fabric and stuffing in place. I realized it needed that, though, and figured I could always scrape away the hot glue if I changed my mind.

I doubt I will.

Now it not only makes me smile, it's highly useful. My new box of pins coordinated perfectly. Random little surprises like that are my favorite things in the world.

Off to do some super sewing with my super pins!

PS - A photo!? Why, yes! My Christmas wish was granted, and I finally have a new camera. Lookout for loads of catch up posts with way too many pictures in the coming days.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Redefining "cool" - these guys know where it's at

I just read a great article in the Washington Post - it's all about teenage boys taking up sewing and discovering that their newfound skills bumps up their coolness factor among peers. Now that's some awesome news.

From the article:
"Far from being ridiculed, the boys find themselves being the toast of the playground."


"According to the winter issue of Sewing Today, a 1997 study of 100 grade-school children found that sewing not only increases creativity but also helps develop patience, perseverance and problem-solving skills. Watching TV, on the other hand, was found to decrease those abilities."


"I think sewing is a dying art, especially when it comes to young men," she (Janice Rankins) said. "I want boys to help keep it alive."

I can't wait to get my son on the sewing machine, and it's good to see that he may not have to fight so hard against negative stereotypes as he gets older.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Dear Santa ....

Please - oh - please - oh - please bring a new camera for Christmas. I'm too visually inclined, and though I've been making loads of fun things this last month, my inability to properly photograph and post them has left my blog ... lacking.

So - a camera. It would totally rock.


Sunday, December 2, 2007

Purchase with a purpose

Relative to most crafty sewing types, my fabric stash is pretty .... small. I have a decent sample of fabrics in there, but it pales in comparison to some of the fabric stashes I've seen paraded on the blog circuit. I'm frugal. Cheap, if you will, and I rarely splurge on anything that's more than about $4/yd. I keep thinking that's a good idea, and that I need to make new things *only* from what I have in my stash.

But that's left me in a rut. And even though I have this somewhat mediocre stash of fabric staring back at me, I still hesitate to jump in and make something. I think it's because I like most of the fabrics, but I don't like, like them. Maybe I liked them in the store, and even still appreciate what initially drew me to them, but I can't look at them and see their purpose. They were fun to find, fun to buy and fun to bring home, but once I got them home I had no idea what to do with them.

So tonight I figured out what I needed to do to get jazzed about the fabric I purchase and actually jump into making something with them within a few days of bringing it home.

Purchase. with. a. purpose.

I have a stockings class coming up with Leslie this week. I need to make a stick horse for Ben for Christmas, and I'm making eye pillows for teacher gifts. My stash wasn't cutting it. It turned out that I actually needed to get to the fabric store and buy some fabric for these specific projects. I also happened to have several 50% off coupons I could use at Joann's, so even the frugal cheapskate in me was ok with it.

I was in and out of Joann's in less than 20 minutes (and that included waiting in a huge line for cutting). I got exactly what I needed, didn't meander, and I even treated myself to some wool felt (can you believe I've never treated myself to wool felt? I told you. I'm ... frugal) since I was getting everything else so cheap.

And when I got home, I was more motivated to make stuff than I've been in weeks. It turns out that I just need to purchase things with a specific purpose so I can jump right in to them. And I didn't even buy anything too spectacular - some felt, some brocade, some thread - but nothing that was over-the-top fabulous in terms of aesthetic appeal.

I love random browsing of fabrics as much as the next person, and goodness knows that special, yummy fabrics are a treat, but for now at least, I have to realize with my limited sewing/crafting schedule, it makes more sense to just get exactly what I need. Where I used to think that a growing stash would inspire me, I've come to realize that it can actually overwhelm me and freeze me in my tracks.

But the purchase with a purpose? Now that is inspirational.