Plants First, Fish Next

The original intent of this journal was to chronicle the trials and tribulations of the struggling twenty-something, as I searched for love and happiness in the small city-burb of ManchVegas, NH. Now, I'm thirty-something, I've found love in many forms, happiness in even more, and now the struggle is just... well... life. And finding time to do the million and one things I want to do- including writing.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

I Am a Crafty Girl

I started a sewing challenge with my girl Teen when she got a sewing machine for Christmas.  I, too, have a sewing machine and use it WAY TOO rarely.  We wanted to start with an easy but useful project: a pillow.

What's in a pillow? (besides stuffing)  It's four seams at the same length with a 90 degree angle and some shite stuffed inside 'till it's comfy.  But if you're *making* it, it's gotta look cute and not crafty.  I have two pillows that are hand made and look crafty, but maaayyyybeee not so cute....  They were purchased at a free-trade market; the big one is super comfy and the little one is actually a quillo (think Poppel but a pillow/quilt combo) hand made by Amish peoples.  And while they're superbly made, they're just not really my style.

I wanted something that went with my mint-green and wicker sectional, was comfy, looked modern, and was cheap.  Not as easy as I thought.  I used the fabric from an oversized Ikea pillow I purchased at least 6 years ago (white velvet-like fabric).  It was slightly stained, and even after a bleach wash looked a little worse for wear, but it was free.  I purchased a 15" pillow form from Micheal's with a 50% off coupon for about $6.  I deconstructed a skirt with embroidered birds and flowers to appliqué to the pillow only to find that it all looked HORRID together.  This is when the project stalled.  I had a white velvet case sewn on 3 sides with some stains...

Teen had finished her project after finding some great printed fabrics (Ikea, I think).  Her two pillows looked lovely and I was totally jealous.  Then stuff happened (like the Luau) and I had to put my sewing machine out of sight, therefor putting it out of mind.  I had found a craft website who had dedicated February as Pillow Month.  The inspiration was nice, but it's a lot of quilting which is a bit above my project commitment level.  I still had my heart set on appliqué, though.  I wanted a peacock, or at least a bird, with colors that coordinated but maybe not matched, and perhaps some texture.

Eventually I settled on the cheapest of all fabrics: felt.  At 29cents for an 8 1/2"x11" sheet, felt in all colors is cheap and readily available.  I also purchased some iron-on fabric adhesive to make my life even easier.  I researched modern shaped birds that are, admittedly, ubiquitous.  I designed a little birdie based on a few things I saw, put in about an hour or two of work, and my three-seamed square turned in to a pillow before my eyes.

I made it to go with my mint-green couch, but with the paisley-textured felt of the body, it REALLY works with the blue mini-chairs I acquired when Pocket moved to RI.

It feels great to finish this project, and I'm looking forward to the next.  I really don't mind if it takes me a month or two to finish it as long as it turns out as nice.  :-)

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  • At 9:04 AM , Anonymous Tina said...

    What's next for the sewing challenge, Le?


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