Sunday, May 1, 2011

Where's my sewing Mojo?

I seem to have lost my sewing mojo. It happens every spring. There is so much sewing that takes place around the holidays. Last year, I had the wedding then we moved right into the holidays. Come January, I don't want to touch my machine. There's a double edge sword here. My sewing room is a mess. I don't want to sew in it but the only way to clean it out is to get busy and sew up some fabrics. There's way too much on the floor.

I also haven't been good about getting some blog articles written. Let's see, new computer and Windows 2010. It took a while to figure out pictures resizing with the new Windows. Oh wait, I can't use Windows for that now.  Really, is this an improvement? Finally, after researching, I found a program that will resize my pictures. I'm also not liking the whole downloading to a file. I guess I need to get over it and keep working getting used to this. I signed up for a blogging class at the local technical school. Wouldn't you know, there wasn't that many people interested in learning how to blog so my class was canceled. I've been blogging for two years now. Yeah, I know the basics. What I need help with is editing in Blogger and getting rid of the great big white spaces that occur sometimes. I thought the new upgrade to Blogger was suppose to make editing easier.  I spend way too much time trying to make the article look nice. It makes me not want to blog due to the time involved. I will work on researching how to better edit so I can stay on top of this.

Enough of my complaining. Here are a few things that I made for Kayla. For the Easter pillowcase, I used the Jelly Bean Rick Rack font from Five Star Fonts. The ice cream cone applique is from Digistitches and the little ice cream hair clippie is from GG Designs Embroidery.
Now the dog coat. I cut this darn coat out a long time ago. So long ago, that I'm refusing to tell you the exact length of time. Good thing I cut it out a size (or two) larger than what she needed at the time. I didn't feel like sewing it up. It actually went together pretty easily. I guess I didn't feel like working with polar fleece. The pattern that I used is McCall's 4961. I decided to use decorative buttons instead of doing any machine embroidery on it.

Here's hoping that I get my mojo back.

Fabric Dyeing

Have you ever said never? I have. Plenty of times. Let's see. I never want to learn: smocking, hand applique, how to make makeup, whole cloth quilting, fabric dyeing, art quilting. I know there are other things I'm forgetting. Why don't we want to learn new things? For me, it's about the level of perceived difficulty with fear of failure thrown in there. Last month, I scratched another skill off that list.

My friend Pat had taken up fabric dyeing a few years ago. When she first mentioned it, I knew it was something I would never ever want to do. Pat would always show what she was up to. Yes, it was always fun to look at what she did but just not my cup of tea. What was it that made me change my mind? It was a scarf. A few years ago, Pat gave me the most beautiful green silk scarf for Christmas. I had gotten so many compliments on that scarf. I loved the subtle shades differences in that scarf. Sadly, I lost the scarf a few months ago. I wore it to a football game and somehow, I went home without it. It wasn't the fact that I lost it but the idea that maybe I could learn how to create something that beautiful.

Last year, Pat gave Taylor and I an invitation to hang out with her while she worked with the dyes. Between all of our schedules, it didn't work out. In addition, the temperature needs to be above 70 degrees for the needed chemical reaction to take place. I was also a little fearful of showing my lacking color skills. Lucky for me, an opportunity came up. The local community college has a sewing and quilting expo every year. Last year, I spent a day going to lectures focusing on garment sewing. This year, I took a day long class in fabric dyeing. Of course, I always seem to be put with a group of over-achievers. The gals at my table were fiber artists and they all had business cards. My classmates all had certain colors in mind or patterns. Me, I didn't want any tie-dyed patterns. I wanted mottled colors. Maybe in the future, my dyeing and quilting will become more adventurous. I was happy with my first try though.

I was very tired at the end of the day but excited practice my new skill. I'm hoping in the next month or so, the weather here in Wisconsin will be warm enough so I can play.