We are renovating our basement, and that means a lot of non-studio time. My husband is plugging away with every free second he has. He is painting, priming, removing dust, moving shelves, etc. etc. etc. Our basement walls were crumbly and nasty, with exposed brick. There were some moldy spots, and a dusty film would develop on everything. Thankfully, the basement is not wet.
We had a local family of cement workers parge the walls for us. Now we are sealing the walls and painting them with waterproofing paint. We hope to get rid of a lot of stuff we had in our basement, but much of it is family memorabilia. We will probably put it in storage to free up space.
We are moving my studio down to the basement to make room for the kids. Hooray for making good use of our 850 square foot house!!
While husband works, F and I made these cute fairies!
Wood clothespin fairies


Singer 301

My grandma gave me this machine, and it has been in my basement for a few years:
I have been lusting over another industrial machine, like maybe this Juki?
For that perfect straight stitch through lots of layers of bamboo fleece, you know? Oh, who am I kidding? I just love the exhilaration that comes from operating an industrial machine, like I could sew the whole world in an afternoon if I wanted to. Or sew to the moon? Simultaneously terrifying and amazing!!
I am going to first try to fix up the Singer and see how it handles layers. The foot pedal is SUPER annoying to use, and I'm used to my Bernina and Consew's leg presser foot lever (so vital in my book).
Have I mentioned how we got our basement walls parged and we are moving my studio downstairs? Well, I'm really excited. Husband is down there now painting the walls with primer glue stuff. Yay!


Almost Crawling Boy

This boy of mine is almost crawling. To avoid the annoying proud mom voice, put your computer on mute before watching!!

Here are two photos I took right around my house. I love the colors and fonts.


Remember how much I love ikea?

Here is a perfect example of how handy the straps on rebourne wet bags can be: holding extra diaper, wipes, and lunch for our outing. My how I love the meatballs.



Isn't it a treat to have a good 24 hour chunk away from your little ones? I got the rare treat of spending time with my boys while the girls stayed with their grandma. We had a wedding to go to, and figured we could swing it with just the baby. Hah! You would think we would learn our lesson. It is just so much work getting the kids in their respective spots, and getting ourselves ready for a wedding (nice clothes, gift, driving), AND juggling a 7 month old. We had a good time, and enjoyed the little peace and quiet away from the girls. I especially enjoyed getting to see my husband all dressed up, having the time to prepare a handmade gift, and draping and making and wearing my first dress.
Wedding gift
I embroidered this based on their invitation imagery.
me in the dress before hair and makeup (!)
My outfit before doing my hair or anything.

My handsome guys.
I didn't get to see the ceremony and we didn't get to eat dinner, but it was fun to get lost on the back roads and enjoy the scenery for a little while with my man!


Art Openings

Last night I took my girls, ages 3 and 4, to an art opening at The Crane Arts Building. I thought it was a pretty good show, but I did feel a little old and removed from the art scene. The girls really liked a few of the pieces, and when we got home they proceeded to make this piece of art:
The artist and her creation
I am working on some baby and toddler hats for this sunny weather, and stocking as time permits.


Sewing things for my kids...

and not for "work."
Today I took the time (husband is home today) to sew a wool play mat for my girls, ages 3 and 4. As a work-at-home mom, I sometimes feel guilty for not taking time out of "my" sewing time to make things for them. When I finally have time to work in my studio, I like to make the most of it, and I focus more on profit than my kids. That is embarrassing to admit, but I'm sure I'm not alone.
I just signed on as a sponsor over at Clean, and I've been very inspired by the simplicity in Rachel's parenting style. Her kids are being raised without TV or commercialization or plastic toys.
I threw out almost all of our plastic toys the other day, and no one seemed to notice. Today I sat down with F, age 3, to make the wool play mat.
My living room while making a wool play mat with middle child
She played with it all afternoon by herself, and she and her sister played with it all evening together. Unlike most days, she didn't whine for a movie because she was bored: she had her little imaginary world and she was lost in it for hours.
Wool play mat complete
We still have too many toys, but I am going to keep working on it. As I'm sure some of you can relate, we have grandparents who like to buy toys for our kids that we don't need or want. Then the kids see the toys, want them, play with them for a day or two, and forget about them. These are not quality, handcrafted toys; these are mass-produced, McDonald's Happy Meal, (Chinese), plastic, and imagination stifling toys. I don't want them in our lives, but rejecting gifts is hard, and you can only express your desires about gifts so many times before just giving up.
The whole sentiment of "quantity over quality" with regards to food and possessions is just so ridiculous.
So how do I switch to being a toy freak who doesn't let her kids accept gift bags at parties, or presents at Christmas, or candy and toys at Easter? How do I control other peoples' gift giving, without being rude or ungrateful? What about those people who don't listen to your multiple requests?
Sorry this is a little vent on my kids' grandparents--but I could use some advice. I think I need to start with just screening what actually comes into my home.



This past weekend was exciting: I felt inspired and got to meet my brand new nephew!!
I made some baby food for R: some carrots and apples. I snapped some photos while out and about and look forward to seeing how they influence my work over the next few months.
making baby food: organic carrots and organic apples
InspirationInspiration. my house is on the other side of that warehouse in the middle.
Follow the links to flickr to see more.