Monday, August 19, 2013

A New Machine

My first Bernina was the ever popular gateway Bernina called the Activa 220, which I think is very similar to this current model offered. This machine was a great little machine that is definitely the most affordable option for new sewers. 

I am not sure why, but I really wanted the all mechanical model that Bernina offered called the 1008. So when I got my job at the sewing shop which is also a Bernina dealer, the first thing that I bought was the Bernina 1008 and it is a powerhouse machine. 

Then, this past month, I used all my sewing shop credit from being their accountant to buy the Bernina 710! This machine is considered a large machine, which means that the machine itsself is definitely bigger, but also the throat/neck/bed space is several inches wider than the other machines, which will make it so much easier to machine quilt with!

Adding a new machine to the mix meant that cleaning up the craft room was so necessary. 

I am lucky enough to have a craft room in our house. It is in one of our upstairs bedrooms, the smallest of the 4 bedrooms. It was actually a perfect set-up because the bedroom had 2 walls that were lined with built-in bookcases. Also, the closet in the room holds the stairs to the attic. So really it was craft room kismet!

Here is the view of the craft room from the hallway entrance:

Here is the majority of my fabric:

Here are my two machines that I still have, the Bernina 1008 and a vintage machine my girlfriend brought from Germany for me.

This shelf holds my fabric that is pre-planned for specific people or projects: 

This fabric is my main stash, organized by color for the most part. Apparently I like the color Red a lot!

I buy my favorite linens by the bolt with a 40% off coupon usually, so I can store them perfectly on this shelf:

The middle bookcase holds my designer fabric collections that I am hoarding, mainly Anna Maria Horner, as well as most of my sewing and quilting supplies:

These fabrics are spoken for also, with quilts already planned for some of my cousins as well as a series of seasonal quilts using voile and cottons that I have planned for myself:

My sewing table holds both my machine and my cutting mat:

The third bookcase has all of my crocheting, knitting, and embroidery supplies as well as my miscellaneous fabrics like home dec and another shelf for my electronics like my yarn baller and camera:

I've also segregated all my planned projects and quilts to make and sell on Etsy (more on that soon), so they are sitting out and ready to be made into some quilts, blankets, and other projects:

The 4th and final bookcase has my scrapbooking supplies on the top shelf, then my jewelry making supplies, and sewing notions like buttons, ribbons, and piping. It also holds some miscellaneous office supplies:

There is a little shelf under my window which is perfect for bolts of true grid (template making fabric) and interfacing, both of which I definitely buy by the bolt, as well as magazine holders that hold a lot of my patterns both that I buy and that I create:

Like I mentioned I have a great closet space to store the items that I can't find space for on the bookcases. I store things like bags of fiberfill, my gocco, and really big quilts that I'll probably never finish:

I almost forgot my ironing board. Very exciting stuff here:

Part of the Great Craft Room Clean Out was pulling everything off the shelves that I want to sell as the supplies section of my Etsy shop. I will be selling fabric scraps from various projects as well as other collections and supplies that I will just never use.

I hope you enjoyed your Tour de Craft Room. 

How often do you clean out your craft room? Monthly? Quarterly? Every 5 years?


Friday, August 16, 2013

Apparently I've Been Crocheting

I hope that everyone has been enjoying their summer as much as I have been enjoying mine. 

So far this spring and summer we've been to 5 weddings, Europe, Cape Cod, New Hampshire, Connecticut, Oswego NY, and several other visits to our respective home towns. I think we've been in our own home all of 1 weekend since May 1st. PHEW it has been crazy. I don't know why but this year I have been on quite the bender, too, drinking more than my fair share of ST&L's (sapphire, tonic, & lime) at each event, staying up well into dawn. Maybe my body knows that I could be getting pregnant soon and it is allowing me to regress to the college years without too much punishment? Either way ... we have a wedding this weekend, and reunion each weekend through labor day so with those plans we will be hitting my home town in Upstate NY (Watertown), the town I grew up in on the Jersey Shore (Spring Lake) and then we are renting a huge house in Burlington with a group of college buddies for Labor Day weekend to end my summer binge on a high note. 

Ramble over. 

So I promise you that I HAVE BEEN crafting. I have been crocheting a shit-ton. It is the  most portable craft that exists, any size crocheting project really travels like a dream. It is sooooo much easier to travel with than knitting! I have mostly been working on pretty mindless crocheting patterns, which is awesome, especially after several ST&L's.

I have been working on a sweet white soon-to-be blanket. It is made with mercerized cotton and is a traditional granny square pattern. Right now it measures about 15 inches square, and I plan on crocheting it with white yarn until I run out in the center, and then ivory yarn around the outside until I run out of that as well. Naturally, the yarn I chose is now sold out so I am just going to make it as big as I can and maybe it will be a good light-weight stroller afghan.

I also started another crocheted blanket with yarn I already had in the stash. This is another traditional granny square pattern that I started uses a worsted weight wool yarn.  Honestly, I had 4 skeins of yarn and desperately wanted to use them up. I absolutely loved the way the ivory, navy, and chartreuse colors looked together and wished I had more of those colors to end the blanket there. But I had this other kind of seafoam-y color to use up and is so didn't match the chartreuse that I just planned to place is as far away from the chartreuse as possible. I don't think the result is that bad, although its not my favorite. I have about 1/4 skein each the ivory and seafoam-y color left and will stitch until I am done. I think that this will be a good sized crib blanket when I am done with it, or a small blanket for a chair or sofa. 

One of my (many) New Year's Resolutions was to make sure I wash my face every night. I am seriously so bad at keeping up with this. I don't know why its so difficult for me, I mean I can manage to brush my teeth and floss every night, why can't I just wash my face while I am at it? I digress...

So I whipped up these crocheted face cloths to entice me a little. They are definitely working! I hope to sell these in my soon-to-be-opening Etsy shop as well (more on that soon!) so I tested out several different patterns to see which one I liked best. Starting from the left, the first pattern is a traditional granny square and I think that it was a little small. The middle face cloths are a great granny square pattern I used in a blanket early this spring, and I love the size and shape. Crocheting with two colors is kind of a PITA because you have more ends to weave in, but compared to the face cloths on the far right which are the exact same pattern, the pattern stands out more in a two-color format. So we shall see which ones I whip up for the shop. 

So that's what I've been working on this busy summer. What have you been up to? Any suggestions for other crafts that travel easily? 

OH! I almost forgot to mention ... I NEED YOUR HELP!! Remember the knitting needle roll that I made? Well I made a matching crochet hook roll as well. I had grand plans of designing the pattern for a complete set of tool rolls, which would also include a double pointed needle roll, circular needle roll, an accessory bag, and a notebook cover BUT naturally my Joann's no longer carries that great red fabric that is the inside of the roll, and of course I cannot find it anywhere on their website either, after hours of searching. I know that this is a lot to ask, but if you are out at your Joann's and happen to come across this fabric, please for the love of God buy me some (like 3 yards) and I will reward you handsomely. I know that this is a long shot, I am not delusional. I e-mailed the company and sent them a picture of the fabric asking for their help but they said they cannot help without the selvedge info and that is long gone. THANK YOU IN ADVANCE.