Saturday, June 30, 2012

My Sewing Space

Good morning yall! Hope everyone is staying cool in all this hot hot weather. It's been very miserable the past few days with the heat (107 yesterday)...We're headed down to Augusta today to visit with my in-laws, my hubby's uncle, and his grandmother! While we're there, I'm going to sneak away for a half an hour (HOORAY for time to myself! Can I get an AMEN?) and head to a cute children's boutique called Posh Tots. We received a gift from there and it was too small, so ... time to exchange/shop!

But, I didn't want yall to think that I had forgotten, here's a sneak peek into my sewing space!I had to take some pictures of my sewing space for my application for a scholarship to The Sewing Summit. I'm praying so hard that I get it. Yall can pray for that too. :)  It's totally selfish of me to want to go, but it would be such an amazing thing for my birthday. But, it's all in the selection committee and God's hands! If not, maybe I can save up and buy a ticket before they sell out for next year. 
Anyways, yall get the benefit of peeking into my sewing room. It's a small space, but hey, it beats having it in our bedroom, as was the case in Lancaster! Hubby was so sweet to let me take over his desk, and this little alcove in our home. It actually works great because I get lots of natural light if I open the curtains. Sometimes, that makes all the difference. I really like that it opens into our living space, so I can be right there with Reagan and Edmund. Overall, it's pretty organized. I have a sewing drawer in the desk (the rest are filled with actual office supplies, and other odds and ends) and it's pretty messy. I'm hoping to tackle that one here this month. I love having lots of my fabric out in pretty baskets to look at. It makes me happy! Plus, with my patterns that fit oh-so-neatly in their basket, I'm constantly inspired just by sitting there. 
For those of you that sew, do you have a sewing space? Is it a tiny alcove like mine, all snug and cozy, or is yours a big room, or a shared space? How do you organize it and make it your own?

I should probably mention that I already re-arranged the pictures hanging along the back wall. The kindergarten tree picture is hanging on the door, the Japanese card is hanging on the left side of the door, and the print is hanging on the right side of the door. After taking these pictures, I realized that they needed to be re-arranged. 
Also, one of my sewing books is missing from my stack. I also use Oliver+ S's "Little Things to Sew". She has such cute patterns! I want to get some of the clothing patterns for Reagan, but just can't make up my mind which ones (because I  won't be able to buy just one) to get. Please tell me I am not the only one with this problem? Right now, my top three of her patterns are:
apple-picking dress sewing pattern
croquet dress sewing pattern
digital puppet show tunic, dress + shorts sewing pattern

I've seen so many cute clothes from these patterns floating around Flickr and Pinterest. I'm dying to make some for Reagan when she's a little bit bigger. I know some of the patterns start around six months, but we're not quite to that clothing size yet. We're just starting to finish up the with 3 months sized clothing. 

When we realized that she could get to the table, we had to move her activity center out!
Reagan's been busy rolling over these days! She's been able to roll from her belly to her back since April, and from her back to her belly since the end of May. This past week, she has been getting frustrated because she can't move places on her own. Reagan finally figured out that she can roll in multiple directions and times to get around a bit. The first time she did it, she was so surprised! I think she'd probably crawl if she had more upper body strength. She gets several bouts of tummy time a day, and she's improving, but still not as strong in the upper body as her lower half. So, here's a few pictures of her in action...

Stay cool in this hot weather, yall!! We'll be back Monday with another post!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Just Keep Swimming

Good morning friends! Happy Hump Day! :)

Reagan and I are off to the Landrover Dealership to get some work done on the hubby's Discovery. It's sure to be a fun day of sitting around a car dealership. Joy joy joy. Yesterday, we had a very busy day! We met my mom for breakfast and went to the bookstore. We had a great time visiting together. :) Mom couldn't believe how big Reagan has gotten in the past two weeks!
After we left the bookstore, Reagan and I ran a couple of errands around Lexington and then came home. In the afternoon, Shelby had a vet appointment. This meant that I had to manage an almost-6th month old baby and a 70 pound Labrador. All by myself. Yup. Did I mention that Shelby LOVES to go for car rides? Almost as much as she loves going to PetSmart. Joy. Thank goodness for our Baby Bjorn, and the kind staff at Banfield. 
Things were much calmer once they took Shelby to the back section to do her vaccinations and her exam. And the Baby Bjorn kept my hands mostly free to try to handle the dog. Note to self: have hubby do it the next time. . Oh well. 

I started working on my swimsuit. I've got almost all of the pieces cut out, and I've been working on getting the lining sewn into it. I'm using the same lining technique that I used on my seersucker dress. Basically, you see all the lining pieces onto the regular fabric pieces prior to constructing the garment. I think it's a little easier to work with and I think it tends to hold the original shape of the garment better. Plus, it's easier for beginners like me! Here's a look of the swimsuit in progress: 

Did I show yall which swimsuit pattern I selected? It's this one.... from 1973 by Simplicity. I'm making the one piece on the far right. The description on the back of envelope about my suit reads: Halter type bathing suit with gathered bra and front slit opening has self-fabric drawstring slipped thru neck casing and elastic casings at back, armhole, and leg edges. Can't be too hard, right? Anyways, I'm sewing it in a Navy blue, with a little pink for the drawstring, and I'm adding a pink sash/ band just under where it's gathered. I wanted to make it a little fancy. :) Cause, ya know, it can't just be the way the pattern says.
It's Simplicity 5694 from 1973

A work in progress
I was really nervous about sewing with the swimsuit material. 

Confession... I've never sewed with stretch material on my machine. My Babylock can totally handle it though, and I'm using the stretch needles and everything. So far so good. 

I'm really hoping to have this finished before we head up to my parents' for the 4th next week. They live on a lake, and of course, have a boat, so I know that wearing my swimsuit with a pair of shorts would be so much cooler than actual clothes. That's been my big motivation for making this swimsuit. Fingers crossed! 

Yall have a great day! Look for another post on Friday... I'll be introducing yall to a funny, blogging (and real life) friend of mine!

Monday, June 25, 2012

The Plan Reveal

so true.
via Pinterest
Happy Monday to all my working friends! We had a great weekend! Got a sweet package in the mail on Saturday from my friend, Marcy!!! It made my day! We're keeping busy here at home, laundry, and a couple quick errands. Also on our plan for the day is working on my swimsuit. Kinda had a hard time finding a swimsuit this year. As in, my two previous swimsuits (one bikini and a one-piece) no longer fit. Think Playboy ad gone terribly wrong. Yup. 

So, I did some research, order a vintage swimsuit pattern online, and went swimsuit material shopping. Fingers crossed. I've never made a swimsuit before. Granted, I've never made a lot of things before but for some reason, the whole swimsuit thing is kind of intimidating. It's not that hard, right?

Making my own swimsuit is also on my wardrobe sewing plan. As I mentioned yesterday, I've developed a way to work on improving/making my wardrobe, since mine needs some work. Granted, this is kind of an over-arching plan, and not one that is a hard and fast thing.

Today, I thought I'd share my wardrobe plan with yall, and go through how I created it. I'd love to hear yalls feedback about my plan!

As you can see, I choose to break up my wardrobe into a list of clothing articles.  Then, I made up a color palette that I'm really going to try to stick to. I also thought about a few patterns that are fairly classic, and that look good, and added those into my palette. 

Most women lean towards one primary base color in their wardrobe, whether they realize it or not. Usually, base colors are black, navy, brown, white, or gray. I personally have always been a fan of black. It's slimming, sophisticated, and really is the complete neutral. 
I picked my accent colors based on the fact that coral, purple, and turquoise are all colors I tend to lean towards. I also have a cool skin tone, which means that the "jewel" tones tend to look better on me than other colors (like yellow). I NEVER wear yellow next to my face. I look sick. If you don't know whether you're a cool skin tone or a warm skin tone, check out these three articles... I found them really helpful.

When working through my wardrobe plan, I thought about a variety of things. I tried to think about clothes that I wear, clothes that I'll need to wear, and what works with shoes, accessories, and other pieces that I already own. I also wanted to pieces that I make to be versatile and classic, but still be age appropriate. I looked online and through Pinterest to make sure I wasn't missing any key pieces. 
I found this to be helpful:
Pinned Image
Via Pinterest
Obviously, this list is much more extensive than mine but I thought it was really helpful in making sure I wasn't missing something key. Amazingly enough, this packing list below was also really helpful.
Pinned Image
Via Pinterest
I always have a hard time packing for trips. I over-pack. Ask my husband. Hopefully having a better managed and planned wardrobe will help me with the packing thing, too. 

So friends, I'd love to hear all about your wardrobe adventures! Have a great day yall!1

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Wardrobe Sewing Plan

Good morning, yall! I wanted to share with yall a little adventure that I'm going to embark on. Okay, let's be honest, it's a bit more than little. This weekend, while trying to dress for a friends' baby shower and dinner with the in-laws, and hoping to find one dress to wear to both of them, I raided my closet. Hadn't really looked that closely at my closet since Reagan was born. YIKES. Not good. I pulled out about 12 dresses that are never going to fit again.... yes, thanks, 36DDs. So, I went through that pile, figured out which I can sell because they're Anthropologie, Jcrew, etc...and which I want to save and use for my fabric stash. I had another 12 or so dresses that don't fit right now, but as I continue to lose another 10 pounds, they'll be fine. This leaves me with about 10 dresses that fit (not always that well) to wear. Several of these dresses are more winter dresses or work appropriate.... not really suitable down in here hot, humid South Carolina.

Are you completely lost yet?

Nope, haven't touched the skirts yet. Dreaded that section. Already did a quick meander through the pants and that's just depressing, so.... after a nice good cry about saying goodbye to my pretty pre-pregnancy wardrobe....

I did what I always do. I made a plan.

I'm great at plans.

This time, I've made a wardrobe sewing plan. I'm actually going to be purposeful about my wardrobe and my sewing (for me).  It'll probably take me a good year or so to do but I think it's something that's realistic, affordable, and fulfilling. For the most part, anyways. I've already got a good start on it as I've begun sewing or planning some clothes already.

Intrigued? I hope so. I'm planning on doing several posts a week on each of these. Starting...tomorrow. Tomorrow, I'll showcase the plan. I'll introduce you to my color palette, my list of wardrobe essentials, and how I'm trying to organize myself for this undertaking.

I'd love it if you want to join me on this project. You may be a seamstress, an amateur learning-to-sew, or just a friend... You might choose to figure out your wardrobe and purchase clothing. Totally cool, too. Either way, hop on board! I've made a little button for your own blog. You'll notice it tomorrow when the plan is announced. Here's what to look for:

We're off to church this morning, and then just a little R & R around here. We had a busy day yesterday, so we are all in need of a little rest. :) Happy Sunday yall!

This is my friend, Ashley, with her baby girl, Addison!
We went to her Sip and See shower yesterday, and had to get a picture of us with our girls!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Watermarking Pictures

I know that sometimes when you're blogging, it's easy not to think about all of the legal stuff that's out there. One thing that I've always worried about is the property on my blog...namely my pictures.  But yall, I found something that I'm so excited about! Thanks to Pinterest  and this wonderful site, Craftionary.... I can now add watermarks and copyright to all my pictures. I'll be going through over the next few days and taking care of that with all of my previous posts.

Please pop on over to Craftionary HERE to find out how you can use BatchMarker to add watermarks and copyrights to all of your content/pictures!

In the meantime, check out my new copyright and watermarks on these adorable pictures of Reagan over the past month!

Oh, and for all yall workin' folks out there, T.G.I.F. :)

Oh, be sure to check out my newest page "All About Me"---original, I know---found at the top of my blog!!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Northern Road Trip

Hey yall! Sorry that this post is so late in the day... I tried to get one up earlier and had little Reagan sitting with thing lead to another and she tried to type. Uh oh! That didn't work so hot. Everything went out into the great world of cyberspace, and I couldn't figure out how to get it all back. I clicked back to look at my lists of posts-it said drafts-and I was so excited. Nope. Nada there. Sad day.

So, I headed back over to the DMV instead of retyping it all then and there. Yes, I said back over to the DMV again. It was our 4th visit to the DMV this week. But at least today was successful! We now have beautiful South Carolina plates on our cars. FINALLY. It was an ordeal, to say the least.

Anyways, what I wanted to share with yall was our trip up to Virginia, Maryland, and Delaware earlier in the month. Reagan and I went up with my mom--sadly, Edmund and my dad couldn't get off of work to go with us. We went up to go see my little kindergartners graduate! Couldn't believe it. They have grown up so much this past was sad to see them graduate. Although, I must confess it felt a little strange because I started the year with them, and my dear friend, Ann Marie, finished the year with them. I'm so thankful to her for everything, for stepping in and making it all work when I got so sick and had Reagan in January. She truly was a huge blessing.
Me and my girl before heading over to school!

Grandma and Reagan match!
Also, if you look closely, you can see the cute lil bows on Reagan's leggings!

It was rather challenging getting the three of us in and still get it to look good! :)
The school was kind enough to let me participate in the ceremony, and it was so great! The kids sang a couple songs, Father presided over the ceremony, and they got some adorable "diplomas". I personally have really mixed feelings about the whole "graduation" thing but it was certainly a fun day. My dear friend, Marcy, organized drinks after work with all my close friends! It was a blast! We tried this new bar at the country club just up the road from the school. It was the perfect day to sit outside in the shade and enjoy blended drinks! Here's a few pictures of my friends!! Miss them all so much!
most of the group! missing a few from this picture!

Marcy and Reagan!

Me and Lauren!! Miss ya girl!! 
On the way up, we made a short stop in Annapolis, MD to see the United States Naval Academy. Mom and I wanted to duck into the Mid store and pick up a few things, and we had to show Reagan around. Her grandpa and her uncle both graduated from there, so it has a special place in all of our hearts. I'm a HUGE Navy football fan, and my husband has become one too. It will certainly be something that we miss this fall.... especially as we are used to going to all the home games (from where we used to live, it was only about 2 hours or less to the Academy). Reagan wore the appropriate attire for her first visit to the yard!
Before heading over to Annapolis! She had a cute bow to match but
 it somehow didn't make it into this picture!

At the Midshipmen Store---there was an adorable little bench, so we HAD to get a photo!
After we finished packing up my classroom stuff, and loading it all into my daddy's truck.... Wait, I should probably explain a little more. In the spirit of full disclosure, my daddy has a GMC Sierra quad cab full length truck with a cap on the bed. It's HUGE. We filled the entire truck bed with boxes of my teaching stuff. There were around 30 boxes plus miscellaneous stuff. Over half of the boxes were full of children's books. Yes, I have a slight children's book problem. As in, I LOVE THEM ALL. Yup. I admit it. That's what helps make me a good teacher, right?! :)

Anyways, after we said goodbye to everybody, we drove to Norfolk, VA for a short overnight stay. My brother is stationed there, and we wanted to pop in and say hello. It was supposed to be about a five hour drive but we hit M-A-J-O-R traffic and it took longer. But we made it and got to spend the rest of the afternoon and evening with him. He and Reagan had a grand ol' time together.
In case you can't tell, Reagan's onesie says "My uncle is a great catch!". 

Oh, for all my sewing friends out there, the dress I wore for kindergarten graduation is one I made. It's only my second dress. I used purple seersucker fabric from Joanns and Kona Cotton fabric from Joanns for the sash. I used this pattern:

Overall, I really liked this pattern. I made a few small uh ohs but nothing too terrible. Minus sewing the pockets shut. And unless you look at the back bodice line. Just don't look there. Please. :) Thanks. I love wearing this dress, because its cool and comfortable. I lined it, too! My first time lining anything, and the inside even looks pretty nice. I'm sure I'll be using this pattern again. It was easy to follow, and is a pretty classic look. 
Hope yall are staying cool in all this summer heat. Can you believe the heat wave that has struck the upper East Coast?! It's been pretty hot here but I know we're in for more heat as July and August approach! Stay cool and hydrated yall!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Blog Button

Hey friends! I'm working on getting an updated blog button for ya! Hope to have it up and running in the next day or so! Please look at the right side of my blog for it to appear soon. :)


Housewarming gift from my parents!!
We are moved and settled!! It has been a whirlwind six weeks but we did it! We moved from Pennyslvania to South Carolina with a whole slew of logistical challenges. Hubby found us a cute two bedroom townhome to rent for a year or so, and we moved in the first Monday in May, and three days later, Reagan and I left with my mom to go to Florida to visit my grandparents! In those three days, I managed to get our house pretty unpacked, get my hair cut, see my bestie, and somehow kept my sanity. Still not sure how that all happened but somehow it did! I don't have pictures of our place yet, but I promise those will come!

Reagan and I had a great time in Florida! She saw the ocean for the first time when we went walking on the beach one morning. It was also the warmest weather she had ever experienced! She took to my grandparents very quickly! :)

We had a great visit! Mom treated Grandma and I to pedicures and manicures for Mothers Day, so the three of us went to a great salon in Florida and had a blast. Neither Mom nor Grandma had ever had a pedicure before (and I don't think that they were sure they'd like it) but to their surprise, they loved it!

Speaking of Mothers Day, we were able to celebrate with both of our moms. We went to church with my parents in the Upstate, and had brunch over at Clemson. It was yummy! Then, we drove down to Lexington and had dinner with the hubby's parents. Also yummy! My sweet husband gave me flowers (only the second time EVER) and a gorgeous necklace custom made for me--it has Reagan's name on it!! Please ignore the not-so-great picture of me... I love my necklace, and I'm pretty I've worn it everyday.

In addition to Florida, our little family took an overnight trip to my FAVORITE city- Charleston!!!!! Hubby had to work so we drove down with him, and visited my sweet friend and her new baby girl! we also visited some other dear friends (Hi Miss Debbie!!!). On Friday, hubby and I took Reagan downtown to King Street! We window shopped, bought some gorgeous fabric, and went to the Market. We had lunch at a new restaurant down by the yummy! We'll definitely be, if I could only remember it's name!!
At the Battery
Shopping on King Street
Hope yall are enjoying this beautiful first day of summer!!! Reagan, Shelby, and I are off for a short walk in the neighborhood. Hello sunshine!!
Take care, yall!
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