Thursday, March 25, 2010

Little Fingers

I haven't had a chance to be too creative lately..
So.....I came upstairs today in hopes that
something fabulous would come into my head.
I sat looking at my fabric wall
but NEVER had that burst of fabulous.
As I sat there waiting for my creative burst
I saw this old piece of pillow
that I had destuffed to use for a new pillow I'd made
and wondered would the fabric
on the back of that ole' pillow look as a FLOWER?

So... I started cutting circles in varying sizes.
Then I found a red bead that I thought might look
kinda cute.... so I sewed it in first.
Then I made really big stitches from
the bottom layer up through different layers
(I skipped around with the layers
so that it wouldn't look too exact)
I used red thread so you wouldn't see it,
and pulled tightly as I made each stitch
to make the FLOWER gather.

Here is my finished FLOWER...
now all I've got to do is get it attached
to a headband for Brook..
She decided that she needed it more than I did.
This is one of the areas dedicated to Brady
in my STUDIO upstairs .
Normally it keeps him busy for at least 30 minutes.....

So... I scratched the whole
BEING Creative mode..
and we decided to do a little
FINGER Painting !!!
As Brady stuck his little fingers in the paint
he kept LOOKING at me
wondering if I was really going to let him do this...
He even told on his self saying
"MOM I gettin' messes"...
I had to laugh as I thought....
some of my best creations were
smack in the middle of
Here is our new piece of ART...
We painted it on Canvas...
SO... I'm pretty sure it will be hanging somewhere SOON !
May we never get too busy in our daily plans
TO SEIZE the moments when they are given.
You might even be surprised that your NEW plan
turned out so much BETTER than the one you started out with.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Creative Cropping

We had a beautiful but busy Spring Break for the MOST part.
Each time Brady saw the sun shining outside
he would ask to go play, or take him to the PARK...
Here are a couple of the pictures I snapped of him playing.
I'm not sure how many of you have Photoshop CS3,
but really any editing program
can do basically the same type of thing.
THERE is NOTHING in the world that can
change a picture more than CROPPING.
Of all the tips I can give a mom, or anyone else
who is wanting to have better looking images...
CROPPING is by far and away
the thing that will make the biggest
difference in the WOW factor of your photos.
Here are a few samples of the same image and what cropping can do.
This is the original shot I took.
Here it is cropped once.
The extra width gives the illusion
of the movement of the slide,
but it is a much tighter shot,
and you can see the expression on Brady's face.
The final crop is just a focus of Brady's face.
Anytime you want to focus solely on a face or an expression
I recommend Black and White.
It removes all the places your eyes would naturally focus
and moves it to faces and expressions.
I also cropped this one even tighter than the first
and used a slight tilt to still create the movement to the slide.
Here is another sample.
This is the original shot taken.
This is the same picture cropped and tilted.
You should always use a slight tilt when
there is movement in a picture.
Like running, cars, or SLIDES.
It just seems to gives life to the pictures original intent.
This is the final crop.
I again did it much tighter because I wanted
the focus to be on Brady and his face.
I also flipped it to BLACK and WHITE
to remove any distractions the eye might go to
other than his little face.
May we all realize that behind a regular ole' shot
there is a WOW picture
underneath most every one we take.
It just needs a little cropping.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

MY Project Runway

I finally got dressed today because I had a
PHOTO SHOOT with a fabulous bride...
SO.. I thought I'd take a few pictures of myself
in the shirts I've been making this past week.
I wore this one today... I think it is my FAVORITE so far.

I've gotta say.... it was completely FUN to wear
something today that I actually made MYSELF.
and what makes it better is it was FREE stuff
that I was going to give to Goodwill...
This one was half of a cheap tank top (bottom)
and a plain ole' white man's undershirt t-shirt top.
I used the bottom of the undershirt to make the
ruffles on the sleeves. It was the easiest one to make.

This one started out to be one of my very favorite sweaters
but .... I didn't read the label and it wasn't supposed to go
into the dryer... SO I messed it up.
The length might have fit BRADY.
spaceI sewed some of the remaining undershirt to the bottom of it
and used more of it to make the side ruffle.
This was another plain ole brown tank top
that again was way too short...
I'm not sure how that happens.. haha
The blue part was a shirt I bought years ago
at Banana Republic.
After having Brady... I just don't
do TIGHT around the belly anymore..
The MUFFIN top is not attractive.
So I used the bottom of it to attach to the tank,
and the sleeves to make the ruffle and the tie.
This is the brown sweater that I
made last week. Just thought I'd throw it in
for my "THINGS I MADE" day.
I wore this one over the weekend,
and it fits so much better now that
I don't have to constantly pull my sweater down
to cover my crack showing..
43 year old cracks are NOT PRETTY!!!
Here is the other one that I showed you earlier this week.
It is one of my other favorites..
I wear tons of black so it will give me lots of new options.
I am so excited to be able to make stuff out of
my old YUCK stuff...
I figured even if I only wear it a few times,
or make a total mess of something I'm trying to create....
THEN nothing lost since it was all headed out anyway.
And the bonus is....
I now have some NEW clothes without spending a penny....
AND they all cover my CRACK.. haha
May we all take a few minutes to go
GOODWILL shopping in our OWN CLOSET.
Even if you don't like what you make...
then you weren't wearing it anyway...

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

The Greatest Grandi

Sunday afternoon my SWEET MOTHER came over for her
64th Birthday Party !!
(she might not want me to say that)
It is so fun for me to get to have
a PARTY for my mother.
My birthday is on January 1st and
I have always NOT SO MUCH enjoyed that date.
When I was young everyone was out of town
on my birthday, or their parents were hung over
from the night before, or they were just plain broke from Christmas.
BUT.... my mom always made sure I felt special on my birthday.
In fact... when I was a really little girl I used to think they
had a tv parade for me since I didn't get to have a party.
(I'm not sure if my mother planted that idea in my head
that the NEW Year's Parade was for me....
or if I just came up with that on my own. )
But... I thought that for years and years.. haha
So... for me to get to give a tiny bit of JOY
back to my mom ON HER BIRTHDAY...
was the best part of my DAY.
Of all the people in the world who have come and gone
throughout my life..... ONE PERSON has always been there
to support me, to hold my hand, to love my children,
to dry my tears, give me advice, to call me EVERYDAY,
to show anyone who would look... a wallet full of pictures,
to hold my hair out of my face when I was sick,
to cheer for me no matter what I was doing,
to feed me countless FAVORITE meals,
and most of all to make me feel that I was the
absolute GREATEST kid in this entire WORLD.
That person is MY MOMMA..
This whole family is better just for having known her.
AND forever blessed because she has chosen us to LOVE.
SO..... to the ONE and ONLY 64 year old woman
who does not have a SINGLE wrinkle
because she never goes out in the sun
(and never had an ounce of plastic surgery)
I want you to know how very much you are LOVED..
NO one in this family would be where they are
without YOU !!!!
I only wish for my children that I can
MATTER to them as much as
my MOMMA Matters to me.
To truly LOVE is the only gift
I can think of... that you GIVE....
and by giving it, you get back more than you've been given.
"The moment a child is born,
The mother is also born.
She never existed before.
The woman existed, but the MOTHER never.
And from that moment on
NEITHER of them will ever be the same."
author unknown
May we never forget the unbelievable power
that one woman can have in our lives...
Make sure to make it worth remembering!!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Ruffle Ridiculous

Everywhere I turn lately....
I'm seeing RUFFLES..
They are in magazines, in store windows,
on my favorite website ,
and ALL over my favorite show PROJECT RUNWAY..
Since I have ZERO extra money to go shopping with
I thought..... HEY why not go through some of that ugly CRAP
I cleaned out of my closet (I'm still not finished with by the way)
and see if I can make something RUFFLED out of it.
THIS is WHAT I MADE today...
I gotta say it was the best FREE fun I've had in a while.
I used this shirt... which must have been from the
"I don't care if my stomach shows days"
BECAUSE ... let me tell you those days have GONE BY..
and it is WAY too short.
and I used this shirt...
to put together to make a little piece of my own
It was the easiest thing I've done in many months..
Here are a few simple directions
if any of you guys want a FREE Ruffle shirt from
your Closet Crap.. haha
Start off with a shirt or sweater of any kind.
haha.... after the green pea BOOB ordeal (a few weeks back)
you might want to make sure it still fits.
Then you can take another shirt (like the first one),
or any piece of old clothing...
I had left over from some era of my past....
( I'm sure at one point they must have been slimming) haha
After I got the two separate pieces cut apart,
I sewed them together to make my shirt
LONG ENOUGH to cover any sign of stomach.
spacesIt looks like a dress but that GAUCHO fabric fits stung.

Then I used some more of the GAUCHO fabric to cut strips.
These are what you need to make the RUFFLES.
This t-shirt fabric is really the easiest to use.

You truly can not mess this up.
I didn't measure a single thing and it worked fine.
Sew a long, wide seam right down the middle of the strips.
Then gently pull ONE of the threads to start your gathers.
You can get them as loose or tight as you like.
Then lay them on your shirt and start sewing
right down the middle of the gather
in whatever type of pattern you want.
I did the first one around the collar
and this one just random down the side.
Here is my finished
Sweater RUFFLE Shirt.
I will try this weekend to (GET DRESSED)
so I can take a picture of them ON..
I really did check first .... and this time they fit...
NO GIANT GREEN PEAS to take apart. haha
Brady watched me sew all day...
and could not at all understand
why I was taking pictures of my sewing machine table.
HOWEVER... after a few hours
he decided it must be some kind of fun
and joined in with his camera too.
May we always remember....
Sometimes being broke leads to being your most creative.
If you have some time this weekend
dig through your CLOSET CRAP and
see what you can make.
I'd LOVE to see your creations.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Day at the ZOO

Yesterday was the most BEAUTIFUL day
here in Fort Worth that we've had in a LONG time.
SO... instead of doing the ZILLION THINGS I needed to be doing
My Daddy and I (seized the moment) and
took Baby Dot to the ZOO..
I'm not sure who had more fun !!!
It was the most perfect day for the ZOO.
NOT one bit cold, NOT one bit hot...
The animals were all out and happy to be on show for us.
Brady is just obsessed with animals of most any kind
and was old enough to REALLY enjoy them all.
WE had nothing more important to do than spend
a day with a little fellow who was
totally engulfed in JOY...
SO... we stayed and looked at each animal
as LOOOOOOOOOONG as he wanted. haha
Here is a small sample of our incredible day.
I must say... this man who Brady calls PAPPA DOOTS
is NOT the same man who raised me..
What an incredible change one man has done in his LIFE,
and in HUGE part because of BRADY...
That little boy....
is the glue that makes us all FAMILY,
and the JOY that makes us all BETTER PEOPLE !!

Each day I see his face I am reminded that
WE are NEVER too old to start over,
and it's NEVER too late for each day to be
May we always remember that
TODAY is all we've got...
Make it ONE to REMEMBER !

Monday, March 8, 2010

Proud of ME

All I can say is YIPPY....I'm PROUD of ME !!!!
Tonight at class I finished my 4th major project..
My ottoman started off 2 weeks ago as a mere sheet of plywood
and tonight it turned into THIS !!!!!

WOW what an adventure this was....
The plywood was cut and formed into a box with a lid.

Then we added our foam core for the lid & covered it with batting.

Next we made our lid cover & stitched the seams to make edges.

Our ottoman opens to use as storage so we even covered the inside of the lid.

Next we folded our seams over and stapled them so that all our lines are clean.

The box frame was also covered with batting.

Then we learned to sew the fabric to form the box frame and its insides.

The pieces had to match up perfectly so they would fold over the inside.

That fabric was fitted, creased into lines, & stapled along the inside of the box.

Then we even covered cardboard with fabric
so that the bottom would be totally finished out.
Here it was after the end of class last week.

Then Tonight came the WELTING which I have learned

MUST be cut on the diagonal in order for it to move around corners.

Here is my finished product with the welting (or trim) added

and my TOP button.
I also added legs (they are in the first photo) and my ottoman is DONE.
I've got to say....

I am pretty proud of my WORK..

I looked at it again when I got home & couldn't believe I did that.

May we take the time to do something we've always wanted to try.

You NEVER know what you might turn out!