Monday, April 23, 2012

turning point

It's good to know that life has its own ways to shake you up and hand you the most unexpected turning points. It's somewhat comforting, this sense of cautious assurance that, no matter what, there's always a brand new thing, maybe a fresh start, just around the corner.

I've come to like changes (one thing I didn't even suspect a few months ago), and today has been a little significant step towards an equal significant change. A turning point. Sweet...

I'm still creating and crafting, but not blogging about it, 'cause I'm feeling a little private at the moment. Said turning point might have some doing in this.

Sorry for not sharing much, of late...

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

next diy projects with pallets

Life has taken unexpected turns lately, and my craft skills are aiming to unexpected targets too.

I've been fascinated by eco-pallets diy projects, and surfing the net for some inspiration.

headboard @ a typical type A
shelves @ a typical type A
photo display @ a typical type A
shelf @ AmandaCarver Designs
bench @ Our vintage home love
wall art @ PB&J stories

Ain't they gorgeous? I'm going to try a couple of them very soon. Thank god at work we have a large stock of broken pallets to dig into. Must buy tons of sand paper... and paint too.

Friday, April 6, 2012

almost there (teachers' gifts)

Planets finally aligned, and we (A and me) spent two mornings (in a row!!) working on our teachers' gifts. Smurfette#2 was in kindergarden and Smurfette#2 got the chance to do homework and play with A's daughter (G). The perfect plan, really.

We started cutting pieces for the (5) totes. While I cut, A was stenciling around, and having a good time too.

A happily stenciling
Then, as we prepared the straps - and by the way, next time I'll buy the strap online... god! they took *forever* - the stenciled parts were drying, like a whole laundry load.

We then sewed the totes, so today we could complete them with the final decoration. This morning we also made the zippered pouches, all five of them. Believe me, I could make one even blinded by now...

See? A is turning inside out one of the freshly sewed pouches.

We got them all done!

And look what A did while I finished the pouches:

She wrote all the kids' and the teacher's names in spiral, then embroided all the beads, also in spiral. Amazing, isn't it?

We both like very much the contrast between the exterior fabric and the lining inside: we had the right intuition in our shopping session.

And we stamped a handmade statement on each tote.

The green totes are A's, the blue ones are mine. This afternoon I've decorated one of the totes.

I've written all the kids' names to the left, separated by a little flower with a bead in the center, and I've used little courier stamps to write the teacher's name on the stenciled heart.

In the label inside I've stamped the year reference and written down the class.

Behind the label there's the school name.

The tote and the pouch are a happy couple! I think that this is a perfect gift for a teacher. And handmade screams of care and thoughtful things.

The next shot was taken by Smurfette#1: should I think she likes it?

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Liebster Blog nomination

I've been nominated for this special blog award: thanks Cindy @ Tops To Treasures!!!!

Now it's my turn. I have to:

1. Thank the person who gave me the award (check)

2. Link back to her blog: happily oblige...

Tops to Treasures


3. Copy and paste the Liebster award to my profile (check) 

4. Pick 5 blogs that I feel deserve to be in the spotlight (they must have under 200 followers): again, I happily oblige (strict alphabetical order)

Multicolored Pieces @ Multicolored Pieces

Chiara @ My Country Nest

Rossana @ Roxy Quilt


Well, that was hard... 'cause I love every single blog I follow (and there are a few...)

Thanks again, Cindy, for your nomination!

Sunday, April 1, 2012

teacher tote - the prototype

I had to make sure the next teachers' gifts were suitable, so I made a prototype.

I made this tote without a pattern, just knowing that it has to be big enough to carry about 20 notebooks. 

Inside there's a little zippered pouch, attached to the tote with a key ring.

tote & pouch, attached 

The pouch is also lined with the same fabric as the interior of the tote. It's a striped soft cotton, but strong enough to support the exterior linen with the "hard work". It's also very easy to wash.

All in all, I'm happy with the idea, but I will make some adjustments in the next versions:
1) the outside pocket is a bit too much: try an inside pocket instead;
2) sew the label in the side seam, and keep it smaller;
3) increase the width of the straps: first off it's to difficult to take them inside out, and secondly one more inch will add to proportions.

I'm still debating if it's better to use Smurfette#2's tote pattern... Maybe I'll make another try, in green, so that I can decide on real things.

garden update

Our garden is growing:


Radish (too many of them)