Friday, October 30, 2009

Happy happy

Stay away from clowns, jokers, donkeys
and short bald men and you will be ok!
Every year I look at this in its frame and I think
to myself.. this year I will figure out a
proper moon head costume. sigh.
Happy Birthday Amie!

More paddles

Another fun paddle show last night at the X-Large store
in Los Feliz and it was super fun. What really
made the night was watching Marty and Elaine
at the Dresden while eating Prime Rib.
Awesome night!! (check out Marty and Elaine above)

The X-Large space..quad cam style.

This man made me so super happy last night.
He was OWNING the color pink,
OWNING the free beer offering and
seriously moving from one long pose into the next.
All night! (that's conviction)
Although, he was sharing a little too much info
about his pink undergarments. Hotness!

Pachanga, are you ready?

The countdown is on for our bday trip to Pachanga
Casino next Thursday. Yes, Pachanga Casino,
where we will be seeing Billy Currington, the studly
country singer of Sweetie and My 'song'.
And if anyone does not understand first hand the
hotness of Billy, then you need to watch the
song here.
This is the best birthday ever.
And so, I have been channeling my inner cowgirl
by doing some hot vintage cowgirl online shopping.
There is no way I can go to Pachanga Casino on
my 30th birthday and not try to make an
impression. I am not certain what it takes to get
noticed at an Indian Casino, but I will try.
Let's turn up our honky tonk sex appeal, people!

1.) Don't get excited; this item is mine ladies. A corduroy mustard baseball cap with an NRA
sharpshooters patch? This gem was inherited from Grandpa..
no, I don't support gun possession. Although, support of the NRA seems to be very popular
at country concerts. So, it may make an appearance.
2.) I wish I wish I had a fringed red suede vest. Amazing. via
3.) It is very likely that I will sport one of sweeties vintage Levis plaid shirts.
So yummy.. and so many on etsy! via
4.)Pony stamped leather purse. Is there anyone who does not like stamped leather? no. via
5.)Um, this shirt is from Kenny Rogers collection for JC Penny? Aside from the
fact that I would willingly sing Sheena Eastons half of We've got tonight at any
moment with out prompting/the fact that Kenny put his name on this shirt,
the fact that it has that yoke is reason enough. via
Although, if I really loved Kenny, I suppose I would be willing
to chance Kenny's DRY casino.. Barona.
6.) These boots are for shit kickin. via
7.)This shirt is the SUPER GOLD STAR WINNER. This, Sweetie brought back
from a recent shopping trip and I have been really easy about wearing it
and washing it, which was a HUGE mistake. Apparently, this shirt is
the country bombtastic, the thing that country dreams are made of, as
there are about 50 google entries for people asking about where to get it. what!?
8.) My most awesome belt buckle. Yes, that is a real seashell on the front.
Super silver star for that one.
9.)This is sweet. probably too sweet for me. via

Now these are the items that my country dreams are made of.
Don't you judge me. This is my Pachanga birthday celebration.
1.) Thanks to Yessi, I have been obsessing about the Boot Mug for quite a while. via
2.)boot cuteness. via
3.)I just don't think there is anything to say about this seller proclaimed 'Dolly
Parton' Dress. This dress is so unbelievably awesome and is totally my color. via
Double Gold Star.
4.) A little campy-ness. Kenny, is that you on the far right? via

Thanks to Cowboy Gill for the country birthday inspiration.
Next country posting will most certainly revolve around
Turkey Lurkey. Stay tuned.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

written love is not dead!

Sending out my Halloween cards today..

This may be too little too late, but you can get them here.
And, they sell really cute Christmas cards too ( and the most
amazing vintage inspired tree ornaments.. but, that is
neither here nor there.)
I love the phrase 'curioser and curioser'..
stolen from the pages of Alice and Wonderland.

Monday, October 26, 2009

The easiest bag (super mondo tutorial)

So the first couple classes have come and gone
and I will finally post the bag tutorial so
all can see the by product of 3 hours of
craftiness. These bags are super easy and cute
and I highly recommend making them
for Christmas gifts.
Imagine the possibilities..
you can stuff them with fancy grocery items,
crafty books and notions; use them
as your gift wrap?
They require only 1 yard of heavy canvas
or heavy twill(should be under 13 bucks).
The fabric we used in class,
as mentioned before, was Joel Dewberry printed
twill. You can use the twill or canvas... prints
will cost you a little more ($16.99/yd)

Here is our sassy finished product,
with sweeties blowfish screened front and
center on the front pocket of the bag.

Along with a sewing machine, you will need simple
sewing notions. Cue the notion bubble..

Here are the pattern pieces you will need to cut and their measurements..

Our front pocket here was screened, but let's remember
my homemade bag from before that had a little
personally crafted flare that I will mention later.

So, getting to it. The first things you will sew are the handles
and the straps. Start by sandwiching together the 'right' sides
(the printed sides) of the fabric and sewing them on
either side with 1/4" seam allowance.

The iron is key here... which is why it has become a notion in the
first place. Use the iron often.
Next, you will open the piece that you just sewed
together, and on the 'wrong' sides, iron open the seam
allowance in the middle and at the sides, iron down 1/4"
seam allowance on both sides of the piece.

Then, fold the seam allowances together, and press again and
sew down the opposite side with 1/8" topstitch.
Note that we are leaving the bottoms of the straps/handles
open and raw... it really doesn't affect the look and it makes it easy
to clip it to our liking later.

**Repeat this same process with the two handles as well.
Same exact process.

Next, we are going to deal with the pocket...
Iron down the allowance on the bottom 3 sides with heavy
steam..1/4". Sides first, then bottom.
Then, iron down the top hem of the pocket, fold 1/4" and iron.
Then, fold another 1/2" and iron.
Sew this piece down with 1/8" topstitch on the inside
of the hem.

Once the pocket hem is sewn down and the
sides and bottom allowance have been ironed
down, Place the pocket down on one of the front panels.
Center the pocket piece 2" up from bottom of
piece, and center the pocket in the middle of the panel.
Pin the piece down so that it does not move while you
are sewing. If you need pinning tips, see next step.

Somehow, I spaced out while I was sewing this pocket down,
but the next step is sewing the sides and bottom down with 1/8"
topstitch.. above pic.

Now that we have the body panel with the pocket complete,
sandwich the two body pieces together with the 'wrong' sides out
and pin the bottom sides. the top needs to remain open.
If there is any confusion about pinning, the pins will lie
perpendicular to the edge you are sewing. You can sew
right over them... pull them while you are sewing or after.
This seems like obvious information, but I promise you,
it's not.

Make sure your body panel with pocket is facing up. below.

Sew down bottom three edges with 1/4" seam allowance.
Remember to pivot at the bottom corners by lifting your presser
foot, rotating your pieces by hand, and continue on your way.
You can also angle the corners or curve them instead of
squaring them off.

Now we need the bias tape... bias tape makes our life easier
so that we do not need to clean finish our inside edges.
If you'd like... you can add tape to the bottom allowance of the bag
too. I only included the two sides in the pattern/notion
needs. Bias is fantastic because it is already prepped and double
layered for you.. line the edges together and press it
down, so it will be easy to sew onto your allowance.
Sandwich the allowance with the sides of the tape
and sew down right in the middle..
do this for both sides.

Next, iron down the hem of the top of the bag.. first 1/4",
then fold another 1" and press.
Sew this hem down at the 1/8' edge on the inside of the bag.

Check out the inner beauty!
The ladies of the class were lucky enough to
have the polka dotted bias... which is darling
and can also be purchased at Hart's fabric.

And now we have the bag body and we need to
attach the straps and handles.

Center the handles on either side, leaving about 6" between
handle sides. Pin these down so they will not slip.
Pin them at a length that feels right for you
and simply cut off the edge with scissors so
that the bottom of the handle is even with the bottom of
the 1" seam allowance.

Sew down the edges of the handle, staying in the one inch
square of the hem. After sewing the square at the 1/8"
edge, pivot and sew in an angle for a secure stitch.

Follow the same process with the straps. center them
over the side seams and sew the same 1"
square with 1/8" topstitch and angled secure stitch.

And there you have it. The easiest, cutest bag.
Even crabby is feeling a little bit shy in its presence.

Look at the cute fit.
You now have the know how. I want to see
bags bags bags.
I will accept many bags for christmas.
Sorry for the lack of class photos, but I just
cannot post pictures of DIYers under
bad neon lighting.

pieces of flare

Since you probably won't be able to screen your bag,
I highly recommend making this very hot home version
of the same bag..
As I mentioned before, I took my 1 yard of lightweight canvas
and dyed it with Rit Dye. I actually used the dark blue color,
and only half a packet's worth. The yellow color from the canvas
made it this cutest vintage blue color.
Please for both of our sakes, DO NOT dry cut canvas after you
dye it and wash it. It will unravel into a shell of itself.
Just hang it dry and iron it damp or dry.
Adding pieces of flare is entirely up to you. If there is a specific easy
image that floats your boat, super. I am going to show you
how exactly to achieve the super rainbow urchin skeleton.
You can pretty much use any easy image you like.

Here is the said rainbow urchin, below is a nice
rough sketch.

Start by cutting a nice fat top heavy circle out of
lightweight felt. The big circle is roughly 3 1/2" wide.
The little guy is 2" wide.

You will need some nice fat embroidery needles.. don't go looking
for these specific needles, these were apparently sold at
Safeway for 95 cents.
You will embroider with regular embroidery floss,
start by splitting the 6 threads into four and two.. you
will use the four for the embroidery over the felt.

Knot the end of the floss and thread the other end (composed of
four small threads.)
Now, let's have a small tutorial in easy
embroidery, shall we?

First we are going to stitch the felt patch down with a border stitch.
We are going use a simple split stitch.
Unfortunately, using a thick fabric like canvas, you have to
just eyeball your work as you go. But, you can do it.

So, make one 3/16" wide stitch and for the next stitch, you
will feed the needle through the first stitch, splitting the
threads in the middle with two on each side.
Make another 3/16" stitch and keep going all the way around.
Flatten the felt with your hand so that it stays nice
and flat while you stitch it down.

Use this stitch also for any large detail inside the image..
like the segments of the urchin.

Instead of fancy french knots, we are just going to use a
fake impostor.
Pull the thread through and knot it to the bottom .

Then, feed the needle back into the felt right next to the knot.
Use these easy knots to make the Urchin bumps.
You will have to follow the sketch and try to eyeball it.
There is just no good way to transfer images onto felt.

Use the same split stitch if you want your urchin to be a glowing
Urchin from rainbow paradise.
Use whatever thread colors you want..
each color on mine is 1/16" apart.

Rainbow urchins.. The star of my bag. What deceased sea creature
will be the star of yours? Too, notice I added buttons to my
bag... feel free to add whatever you like
(I am thinking iron on flocked letters that spell
your name?).

Thursday, October 22, 2009

vintage love!

I know I ramble on and on about the Allen Company Inc shop
because I love it. But, she also has a flickr stream/blog that
makes me so happy. I love these mornings when I realize that
I haven't looked at it in a while and it is full of new,
beautiful images. The girl has the prettiest light in her house.
Jealous. Isn't there a part of all of us that would love to
snuggle into our own creaky historical home and sell
vintage for a living?
I am picturing it and the picture is good.

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