Thursday, May 31, 2012

Scrap Fabric Needle Book

After I had been sewing a while, I figured out something. You cannot stick needles in pin cushions. Even cute cushions that you made yourself to look like an ice cream sundae.

They have no head, so they can scootch right down in the cushion and you'll never see it again.
An experienced seamstress could have told me about needle books - little fabric books with felt pages to store your needles. I had to learn the hard way, on the cold streets of the Internet, after I murdered two tomato pin cushions to get all my needles back out of their innards.
I gathered some scrap fabric and trim, and made this little cutie. I found a vintage button to put on it, and I just love it. I kind of wish I had made it into a wallet!

The Southern Institute

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Craft Rooms: Then and Now

Last summer when my husband was going through radiation, I was not doing well. My little girl was sent far away to stay with her grandparents, and though I was with Nate every day taking care of him, I couldn't touch him. I had to stay a good arm's length away from him at all times. I didn't know if he'd be ok. That time was so stressful my hair actually started falling out in clumps. I had to tease it ever higher to hide my scalp. (Thank the Lord, it has grown back and I've subsequently reduced the height of my hair.) To keep myself from going crazy, I worked on a project - my craft closet.
I painted, sorted, and organized. After Nate's quarantine was over, he celebrated by taking me out to get storage shelves. After the week we had, going to Lowes was treat!
This is what my craft closet looked like when I finished.
The view from the door. Not much, but it gets better.

The right side of the closet

The sewing machine is sitting on a 1940s sewing table I found at Goodwill for $15! Not that I got it in the picture. I literally could not get it in this picture. I am standing against the shelves on the other wall. You'll just have to take my word for it that it is indeed a vintage sewing stand that I will one day paint a bright, shiny red.

My spice rack converted to a thread organizer.

A garage sale set of drawers decorated and labeled with scrapbook paper, an empty hot fudge jar covered with paper to make a pencil holder, a felt ice cream pin cushion, and my ribbon organizers are spare drinking straws from plastic travel cups.

Button jars in a cute thrift store cabinet.

I got a little crazy with the photo editing in the next several pictures. I wanted to make the fabric colors pop, but maybe they burst!
Top of the shelves.

Middle shelves.

Bottom shelves.

I loved my little craft closet! I spent a lot of time in there. But now our sweet little house is for sale, and we are more than a thousand miles away in Colorado. We have to wait for our house to sell before we can settle in more permanently. To settle in a bit, I annexed an unused Sunday school room. I made it into a classroom. It had a second room behind it into which I pushed all the classroom furniture I didn't want. Then I thought about all that space, just wasting away. I had my husband haul all the furniture to a third room (the church is very patient with me) and then bring my craft boxes out of our storage room.
I spent an afternoon cleaning, then an evening organizing, and I made a craft room! It is much bigger, though not so pretty.
First, here is my school room. I admit, all my former teacher-ness came out. I went so far as to make bulletin boards.
From the door. I keep all my teacher supplies in the pink craft tote. My mom gave it to me, and I was going to use it for a knitting bag, but it is so much handier having all my pens, hole punch, ruler, ect, right on hand. Notice the two chairs beside each other. I started out sitting on one side, with Suzy on the adjoining side. She was too lonely, and wanted to cuddle.

Her favorite place to be.

I made her a preposition poster to help her when she labeled sentences for grammar.

White board with Phonics Museum cards and our bulletin board. We did a five week unit on Colorado, and this displays Suzy's projects. We have the state flag, state bird (lark bunting) state flower (columbine) state insect (hairstreak butterfly) state tree (blue spruce) and very tiny, the state animal (bighorn sheep - our last lesson, the ambition of her work had diminished by then.) There is a pink milk crate of dress up clothes below the board. For emergency accessorizing.

Not particularly stunning, but my cabinet to keep all my teaching what-not in.

This is the church's felt board, and no one was using it! So I requisitioned it. Suzy enjoys putting the scenes together. She has her little job chart to the left. The white cabinet is actually full of felt boards and pieces.

My curriculum cabinet. A small bulletin board that I will put or homeschool theme verse on, some toys, and a map of Grand Junction. For geography, we map and pin every place we go.

So that's my school room. Here is the room that is through the door you can just see to the right in the above picture.

My work table.

Suzy's work table.

My cutting table. Not terribly exciting, unless you've ever had to cut out a dress pattern on carpet!

Storage shelf and scrapbook table. Except i don't really scrapbook. Card-making table, probably.

A project board. And my fabric! Those are built in toy shelves. They work perfectly.

So there you go. God has moved us, and He continues to bless us. Each time we move, we go with the mindset that we may live in that place for the rest of our lives. We get prepared, we start spreading out roots. And sometimes, like my hydrangea blooming in the church flower room, we get dug up and put in a pot for a little while until we get planted again. What can you do, but make the pot as homey as possible while you wait? :o) It's all God's blessing.