Thursday, December 27, 2012

A post of random things

1. First off I would like to say "THANK YOU" to Shanni (one of my favorite sewing bloggers!) for gifting me this Craftsy class. I ended up winning a giveaway on her blog for a Craftsy class of my choice. Since I am terrified of sewing pants, I figured that this class would be beneficial to me. Thank you so much, Shanni!

2. Last Saturday I went and looked at sewing machines with my friend Krista. I didn't actually test any (I'm doing that this Saturday), but I gathered information on the machines I was interested in. I thought that if I tested one and loved it, I might end up leaving with it. I know that this is a big decision and don't want to rush things!

So far I am leaning towards the Pfaff pictured above. I like the features and the price. My grandma and my new grandma (Luke's step mom's mom), Vicki, both use Pfaff machines. Vicki and I were talking about sewing machines on Christmas Eve and she got me pumped on Pfaffs! Haha :) I still need to test out the machine, so it's not a done deal yet.

And THANK YOU to everyone that gave me tips and input on my last post. You are all talented ladies and I value your input so much, thank you thank you thank you!

3. Here is a quick photo recap of what I did to celebrate Christmas this year. The photo above is of me and some of my favorite girlfriends at Hearst Castle. I know, I just went to Hearst Castle a couple of months ago. What can I say,  I'm obsessed!! We went on a night tour and got to see all the beautiful holiday decorations. If you aren't burned out on my Hearst Castle posts, then I will do another blog entry with some of the photos I took :)

Christmas partying with Lori, Jackie, Dom, and Erin.

My love and I.

Photo from Noelle's blog

Last Saturday we went to a Christmas party at Noelle and David's house and it was so much fun! The photo is of everyone holding their gifts from the white elephant gift exchange. I'm in the back and hard to see, but I'm holding an apron. Oh, the gift exchange was extra entertaining because the gift had to start with the letter "A." You can read Noelle's post about the party here.

I hope everyone enjoyed their holiday!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

It's time for a sewing machine upgrade

For Christmas 2009, my husband surprised me with a Brother sewing machine. He didn't know if I would actually use it (ha!) and I didn't know what to look for in a sewing machine, but the gift was perfect! I dabbled in sewing for the first two years, but more recently I have become more "serious" about garment sewing and my current machine isn't cutting it. My biggest complaint is with the stitches, they are inconsistent regardless of how much I mess with the tension, change and rethread the thread, or change the needle. Well, there are more issues than that, but that one is the most annoying!

On Saturday my friend Krista and I are going to look at machines and hopefully test a few out. I wanted to see if any of you have any tips for me or have a machine that you love and can't recommend highly enough. Thinking about finding the perfect machine when there are so many out there is kind of overwhelming!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Long sleeve Renfrew

First off, I wanted to say "thank you" to everyone that gave their input on my last post. Reading your thoughtful comments made such a difference in my mood and made me realize that I'm not entirely alone in how I feel when it comes to being in a sewing rut. Thank you so much for taking the time to make a girl feel better! :)

Good news, I made something! The weather has been cold here, and by cold I mean the lows have been in the 40s at night, so I decided to make a long sleeve Renfrew. I know some of you are chuckling when I say that forty degrees is cold, but that's cold for the beach!

I decided to sew the Renfrew because it's a pattern that I have made before and I knew that it would be an uncomplicated, easy project. The fabric is from my shopping trip with Christine Haynes at the Michael Levine loft and it's a pretty wine colored knit. I really took my time with the construction and used a zig zag stitch to finish the raw edges (I don't have a serger). The inside looks really clean and professional, which is a first for me haha.

Since my photographer (husband) isn't around to take a picture of me in my new shirt, you get a picture of me at work making Duck Face. You know the face, you've probably seen it in many Facebook profile pictures ;) Oh, and my head scarf is from Lucky Lucille. I can't get enough of them, I wear one in my hair almost everyday.

Friday, December 14, 2012

I'm in a rut

sorry for the low quality Instagram picture

A couple of weeks ago I sewed two dresses for my trip to Los Angeles and last Sunday I made six of these grocery totes as Christmas gifts. Since then I have not done anything sewing related and I feel weird about it. All day I think about sewing nonstop, but at the end of the day when I have the opportunity to sew I don't and I'm not sure why. I'm not sure if I'm burned out, overwhelmed by all the possibilities and don't know where to start, don't have a new project to focus on, or if I'm just lazy. It's the strangest thing. Hopefully, I will get out of this rut I am in. Here's to a productive weekend!

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Let's go Clippers!

 After my hang out with Christine I headed back to the hotel I was staying at, Hotel Luxe, and got ready for the Clippers vs Kings basketball game at the Staples Center. I made the dress above especially for the event :) It's my fourth Hazel dress and I am beginning to think it's my go to pattern. The fabric I chose for this one is wilddddd!!!

I had my friend Marie take the photo of Luke and I. It was funny, on my way to the elevator I heard someone call my name. I looked over and it was Marie! We used to work together at the CCS call center in San Luis Obispo close to nine years ago. We have kept in touch through social networking, but I had no idea that she worked at the place we were staying at. Small world!

Next to the Staples Center there was an ice skating rink set up. It's kind of a big deal for a place that doesn't ever see snow, so the line was super long.

 My game plan for the night was to walk on the court during warmups and talk to DeAndre Jordan. Last time it almost worked, but a security lady told me I had to leave :( This time I was determined, but they must have known I was coming because I got put in the seat with the stop sign in front of me. I decided not to push my luck. Next time I will think of a better way.... Does this make me sound like a full blown stalker? Because I'm not.

My dress was definitely a conversation piece! My favorite comment of the night was when an older gentleman working security asked where one could buy a dress like the one I was wearing. When I told him that I made it he got really excited and called over his coworkers to look. It was really cute!

 We had ok seats, but the picture doesn't do it justice. I think we were in the 17th row.

And before you start thinking that I am the biggest Clippers fan let me make it clear that I'm not. Clipper Darrell is the official number one fan. The dude wears half red, half blue outfits and even drives a half red and half blue car. He is so entertaining at games and luckily we were sitting close to him. He gets the crowd pumped up with his cheering/yelling, gets the wave going, and does some awesome dancing. When the Clippers dancers are doing dance routines during time outs, Clipper Darrell will step into the aisle and mimic their dancing, even if that means getting on the ground and rolling around. He is a crack up!!!

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Meet up with Christine Haynes

 On Saturday morning my husband Luke and I drove three hours south to Downtown Los Angeles. We listened to Murder City Devils, Magazine Dirty, and The Bronx the whole drive, so by the time I got out of the car I was pumped up and ready for some fabric shopping! At 2:00 I met Christine Haynes at the FIDM campus.

 I have to admit, I was nervous about meeting her. She is someone that I look up to so much and I was worried that I would be a total dork and embarrass myself. Would I get nervous and blabber too much and then sweat excessively when I realized how lame I was being? Would she be bummed that she was stuck shopping with someone so uncool? Haha these are the things that go through my head!

Immediately, I felt at ease with her. She is one of those people who are so genuine and sweet, I wondered why I even worried. I felt like I had known her forever! We talked nonstop about sewing, our personal lives, and some of you bloggers :)

Amazingly I was able to keep my mouth shut about my dress. I wanted to surprise Christine by making one of her patterns, the Chelsea dress. I was super excited about wearing it to meet her and I think she was surprised! Oh, it was cool, when I was walking to meet Christine a random lady on the street stopped me and told me she loved my dress :) I'd also like to add that this is the most comfortable dress ever and the fact that it was so comfortable during a three hour car ride made it ever more awesome.

 We went to the Michael Levine loft and scored with some rad fabric. 5.9 pounds of fabric at $2.50 a pound = $16.04 including tax. Nothing wrong with that!

 Our next stop was to Islands Fabric, a store that specializes in Hawaiian fabric. Surprisingly, I didn't buy anything Hawaiian, I bought LA Lakers fabric. No, this is not a joke, I seriously bought Lakers fabric. It's for gifts though!!

After Islands Fabric, Christine and I parted ways. I had SUCH a blast with her and made her promise to call me when she comes up north. I am happy that I can call Christine my friend, she is one of the most amazing people I know.

Here are a couple closeups of the dress I made. I can't recommend this dress enough! The directions are so straightforward, it was easy to sew, and it's soooo comfy! I love how the look is so different from my muslin due to the different fabric. I used shirting from Mood and it feels so soft against my skin, it's amazing how much of a difference nice fabric can make!

Monday, December 3, 2012

Meet up with Jill from The Sew Alongs

An Instagram of a digital camera shot

Jill contacted me a month ago and asked if we could meet up while she was in town. I was super pumped because I had always liked Jill's blog, so why wouldn't I like Jill? We agreed to meet at Splash Cafe, a local restaurant in Pismo Beach that is well known for it's amazing clam chowder.

Jill was as awesome as I thought she would be! I just knew when she ordered the seafood topping (a mix of shrimp and crab) on top of her chowder that we were meant to be buds ;) It was so nice to talk to someone with the same interests and enjoy warm food on a cold rainy day. We were there for two hours talking and laughing. Thanks for hanging with me, Jill! I had a blast and can't wait to have a sew day together in the future.

Something we talked about was explaining to friends who you were meeting up with when you haven't officially met before. Do you find that people judge you/act weird when you say you are going to hang out with a sewing blogger that you haven't met in "real life?" I don't think it's weird at all (obviously) and my husband doesn't bat an eye when Rochelle and I are texting or when I meet up with a blogger. When I have told some acquaintances that I was going to meet up with a sewing buddy I met through blogging, some will ask, "but, how do you know each other?" and get confused.

How have people in your lives responded to your meetups?