Thursday, September 17, 2009

Pregnancy Update: You Ain't Just Fat is You?

The cash register lady at Rite Aid actually asked me that question last week. Seriously? What planet is she from that she thought that was a socially acceptable question? The man behind me said that a man could never get away with asking that question. I wanted to respond that a woman can't either. I did clarify that I was 8 months pregnant, not just fat. At least ask me in proper English next time.

Here's a bump update. Actually, calling it a bump makes it sound cute and little. I'm not sure what to call this, but I'm thankful for it. Sorry for the lame self portrait.

Weird pregnancy story #2:
When we were at the beach last weekend, we hit up our favorite drive in (Big Oak) for shrimp burgers. While standing in line, the woman behind me said, "You're having a girl November 6, aren't you?" Bizarre because that is my exact due date. I looked at her with question in my eyes and said, "Yes. Yes, I am." She then said, "It's your first isn't it?" "Yes," I responded, "and if you know her name you're going to freak me out." She said doesn't guess names, but she does guess time, weight, and length. So, apparently our little girl is going to be born November 6th, at 4 or 4:30 in the afternoon, and she'll be 19-1/2" long and 7 lbs. 3 oz. How freaky will that be if that actually happens?! I've been weirded out ever since last Saturday. I don't know if she was an OB nurse and has been around pregnant women her whole life or if she's a psychic. I kind of don't want to know...At least her prediction is noted now, so we'll all wait in eager anticipation to see if she's right.

Hopefully, I'll have some nursery update photos soon...

Monday, September 14, 2009

Caroline's Wedding

Stephen and I got to head over to Morehead City this past weekend for Caroline and Chad's wedding. Have I mentioned how much I love the Sound?
Bridesmaid's luncheon in Beaufort. I know you all like my smile that looks like a 5 year old.
Rehearsal Dinner and After Party: Oh! There's that flowered dress again! It just keeps getting shorter in the front.
Caroline was a GORGEOUS Bride! Her dress was killer.

Check out my bump in my maternity bridesmaid dress:
Here's an action shot from the reception- Stephen's first oyster shooter. Just a question, but what's the point of eating a food that people encourage you to just swallow? Shouldn't I want to taste the food? If I don't need to linger over the flavor of the food should it really be eaten? I can't get on board with oysters. Sorry. I know that as an East Coaster I should, but at this time, I just can't.
Marlene, Drew, Stephen, and me
Thanks for a great weekend, Caroline and Chad!

Sweet Bunnies!

When Sara Rife asked me to paint these bunnies for her son Will's nursery I was excited for two reasons:
1. I'd get to contribute to his nursery and feel like there is a little part of me hanging over his crib (not in a scary way).
2. I normally don't do such traditional paintings, but I really enjoyed it.
I think they turned out nicely. Enjoy!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Rough Luxe

Stephen sent me this article from the Wall Street Journal. Learn about Rough Luxe here. I really appreciate this article as a hater of McMansions and perfect, personality-less spaces. Here are a couple of my favorite quotes:

"If rough luxe has a mantra, it’s “authenticity.” Gil Shapiro, founder of Urban Archaeology, built a business on random acts of historic preservation,... once made casino mogul Steve Wynn sign a statement promising that he wouldn’t polish the pair of municipal lampposts Shapiro sold him for a hotel in Atlantic City."

“I think especially now, when we don’t have a sense that we control our fates entirely, maybe there’s something a little bit easier about the idea that every single surface of your environment isn’t polished,” Sofield says. “There’s a friendliness to it, maybe an egolessness—just letting certain things be.”

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Another Tutorial...

I am going to do my best to try to break this down... Here is how we made the shade for the nursery.

First, I measured the window and decided that I wanted the treatment to be 3" wider (on each side) than the window casing.  So that gave me my overall width.  I eyeballed the length that I wanted, around 22"-24" finished.  I gave myself an extra 17" of length to account for the gathering, hems, and enough to staple it far enough back on the top mounting board.

When you make a shade for a window that is wider than the width of your fabric, you never want to have a seam in the middle of the treatment.  For this one, I wanted a large center panel and symmetrical smaller panels so that the seams would line up with the gathering.  There is not an exact science to figure out that proportion.  I just went off went felt right.  My seams were 10"-12" from the outside edges.  Don't forget to match your repeat, as necessary.

Next, we cut everything out.  I get nervous that I'm going to short myself on fabric somehow, so I allow 1" for every seam.  You could certainly do 1/2".  I also neurotically draw out my fabric cuts.  I draw a big rectangle that represents my overall fabric yardage.  Then I draw dotted lines to represent the cuts.  This just helps me think through the cuts one more time and insure that I have enough fabric.  It also can help maximize the fabric that you do have.

So here are the three cuts, face down, sewn together.  
We made the same three cuts in our lining fabric, sewed them together, lined them up (face to face) with the main fabric, and sewed those together.  Leave the bottom side open, or you won't be able to put the proper seam in the bottom.  Next, turn it right side out and push out your corners.  Shown here:
You'll probably want to iron it at this point so your seams lay flat.

Okay, hang in there with me, we're rounding this out.  I hope this isn't boring!!

We did a 1" hem at the bottom and then turned that up again 4".  A hearty hem at the bottom will help any treatment hang better.
Sewing in the bottom hem...
Then we wrapped the 1x3 board with extra fabric to cover the ends (see an example in the previous tutorial about the guest room shades).  We stapled the treatment about half way back on the board (also see previous post).  We went ahead and attached 3 "L" brackets to the bottom side of the board.  Tip- make a small hole in the fabric where you are going to attach the "L" brackets.  It will keep you from snagging the fabric.  Tapping in a nail will do the trick.  As far as the placement for the 3 brackets we used, I put one on each end- about 3"+ in.  Then we put one directly in the center.  We cut the board about 1/4" shorter on each end than the width of the treatment, FYI.  I wanted to be sure it wouldn't stick out the ends.

Okay, last step (other than hanging it):  I hand tacked drapery rings along the backside of each seam.  Mine are about 4" apart (based on the size of the bottom hem).  You will need to tack through to the front side of the face fabric so that both fabrics will gather.  When you buy the rings, in the same area should be some hefty string or cording (see it in the picture below).  Once all of your rings are on (I did 4 on each of my seams), you'll take your hefty string and run it through them and tie a bow.  Tie a bow (rather than a knot) so you can adjust it later if you're not happy with it.  If you're sure you love the gathering, just make it a double knot.
Lastly, hang that thing!  Ta-da!  Here's our finished product.
I hope this is fun and helpful.  I would love your feedback!

Guest Room Shades

Hey Friends!
Sorry I've been lame about blogging the last week or so.  There's been a lot going on- more posts to come.  I quickly wanted to get this one out before we head to the flea market (hooray!).  I've been wanting to learn to sew, and I have been trying to work with my Great Aunt's ancient Singer sewing machine that is built into a table.  B-I-G mistake.  I'm not skilled enough to have a challenging machine.  I need one that  makes me look good.  Please keep your eyes pealed for the antique gem on Craig's List.  :)  Nonetheless, when mom was in town we got to borrow my dear friend Jayme's machine so we could make some progress (peep Jayme's adorable creations at her blog).  Our first task was to make fixed roman shades for my guest room.  I had some leftover fabric from college (don't worry former roommates, the crazy bandana fabric lives on).  I mostly used my friend Darby's tutorial, but we made a few adjustments...
First, here are the finished shades:

On the previously mentioned tutorial, Darby hot glued her blackout lining in.  Mom and I thought it was easier for us to sew it in.  Sorry, I forgot to take a picture of that, but just stitch the face fabric and the lining together and then make your finishing edge seams.
We also decided to use a little of the extra fabric to wrap the 1x2's.  Be sure to wrap the ends too so you don't see the wood once the treatments are hung:
Here's a picture of the finished shade stapled to the 1x2, just for a visual:
After mounting it, we tacked in the folds and laughed our heads off while mom tried to actually hang the treatment in the room.  Don't worry, she was able to do it, and she wasn't about to let my pregnant self teeter on the step ladder.
Now I just need to hang things on the walls in there and paint the walls and trim.  I'm thinking white trim and lime wash on the walls- any thoughts?
Enjoy and give this simple task a whirl!  
PS-I think I used about 2 yards fabric.  Hope that is helpful.  Let me know if you have more questions.