Crafts "room" reveal

>> Friday, March 30, 2007

I finally finished my crafts corner! It's not much, I don't have a whole room to work with, but I love it because it means that all my sewing things are now organized in one corner. I used the blue crafts room inspiration page in my last post, but didn't end up changing the wall colour. But I did manage to get lots of blue into the corner.

The picture above is my favourite new accessory, a little ruffled ceramic dish that I found while thrifting. It's perfect for holding my pincushion and loose pins and thread while I'm sewing. Even if it wasn't useful I have to admit I'd still love it because it's so pretty.

Here's a picture of the whole corner. All my smaller crafts books are in the middle shelf of the small white bookshelf, and the large ones are in the birch IKEA bookshelf on the right.
I used wooden shelf kits from Home Depot, they're only $6 each and the wood has a nice border, and it's all ready for priming and painting. The white metal brackets I used are the same kind I saw in the Blueprint room, and I recommend them over the large wooden brackets that came in the kit because they take up less space. This was a tip from the magazine and I'm glad they mentioned it because otherwise the boxes on the bottom wouldn't have fit. I recommend planning out what will go on the shelves so you can make sure there's space.

These baskets, boxes and tins hold lots of sewing supplies, but the one on the top left is empty because it's getting so fragile. But it's the first sewing basket I had when I was little, which belonged to my great aunt and it's very special to me. I adored it and used it all the time. The lining is pink silk.
I gathered up some other blue accessories, pleased to find that my tea cup and Dorcas pin tin fit in with the colour scheme perfectly. The little blue case is a cheap party toy with the tiny balls that you have to try to fit into the punched circles. It had a clown picture, but I used another Martha Stewart magazine tip and opened it up and replaced the inside with pretty Japanese paper.
The chair slipcover is my pride and joy - my first slipcover ever and a perfect fit for the wooden chair. I also love the fabric - a new pattern from Fabricland that has a Japanese look to me. The flowers in the pattern are made up of tiny dots. I made a template with cheap fabric first, and while it is more trouble, it is worth it in the end.
I made a scalloped mat for the sewing machine from two pieces of wool, and cut a scalloped edge by hand. The secret to cutting scalloped edges is to clip the fabric with "v"s first, then round out the v's to make the scallops.
These metal boxes hold all my threads and other notions. I painted them both white to match. I covered the drawers of the IKEA box on the bottom with patterned paper, inspired by the lovely Blair at Wise Craft.
And finally, I found a plain wooden wastepaper bin at Goodwill, and painted it white and then added a blue bird on a branch with the leftover paint from the desk. I like the scalloped edge.
So that's it! The only thing that wouldn't fit in this corner is my fabric stash...someday I'll figure out what to do with that!


Miniature crafts studio - part one

>> Wednesday, March 21, 2007

from home & country June 2006 - I love everything about this page, the blue, the ceramics, the antique sewing machine and of course the whole nook aspect of it.

I feel bad I haven't posted in a long time. I'm not sure why, I'm still doing lots of sewing and knitting, and I've been sneaking lots of new things into my etsy shop. But I was thinking it might be because lately I've been obsessed with fixing up our home. You know when you reach the point where you have to apologize a little bit? You say things like: "Is it ok if I just tell you my idea for those chairs? Just quickly..."

In the last year we've replaced the light in our kitchen from a horrible flourescent fixture to a charming schoolhouse light. We also replaced the ugly living room light and added a lamp in a formerly gloomy corner of the room. And we finally hired a plumber to remove the sink we had in the living room - I guess it was a kind of bar area, but it's in an alcove and I was using it as a closet. Lots of wasted storage there! We still need to add matching hardwood flooring to the place where the cabinet used to be, but the hardest part was getting rid of the sink so thank goodness that's done.
from Country Living March 2007 - I had to get this great issue which has interviews with several women entrepreneurs that are so inspiring, including a peak into Amy Butler's studio! (this isn't it). I love this craft's room - so airy but still full of goodies (you can click on the picture to see it larger)

I've painted more things than I care to list, including shelves, doors, walls and boxes. Incidentally I discovered the secret to painting slatted bifold doors. This is it: a small brush. I mean really small, like an artist's brush, and you just take your time (preferably with a movie on in the background) and paint. The big brush may seem faster, but trying to get into all those corners by waggling the brush (and pretty much ruining it) isn't worth it. I've tried both methods and the little brush was downright relaxing. It took around an hour per coat but it didn't stress me out and there aren't any drip marks either. Then I added a pretty glass doorknob.

I've sorted, rearranged and gotten rid of things. I've moved furniture, put things in our new storage space (for three years I didn't even know there were any in the building!!) and bought new furniture. The best pieces were an IKEA table that folds down to about 12 inches wide, but is perfect for dining for two or working on when one leaf is up, and can seat six when both leaves are up. And of course my beautiful secretary desk that is everything I hoped it would be.
from Blueprint March/April 2007 - An incredible small space makeover - that's why I had to get this issue, the apartment is even smaller than my place at 307 square feet! This is where I got the idea for the shelving I'll be doing.

So what's next? Well I wanted another secretary desk but this one would be for my crafts things. But that seemed greedy. And as my always patient friend Jaimie (who luckily is also obsessed with home-making at the moment) mentioned might draw the limelight away from the one I just bought. So using a plain desk I already have I'm planning to create another miniature studio - but this time for crafts. And the pictures in this post are all my inspirations derived from my magazine addiction (but that's another story).

Of course I'll be showing the reveal in my next post!


Pretending it's Spring

>> Sunday, March 04, 2007

As promised, here are my new curtains that are filling in for wallpaper. I've been seeing so many pretty wallpapers recently, but it can be expensive and you can't take it with you! So when I saw this fabric I decided it was perfect. Also, my new desk is right beside the window and the old curtains just didn't seem good enough anymore.

Here's another picture so you can see the pattern better:
I'm usually not very patient, but the fabric was expensive so I took some time to finish them properly, with careful measuring, matching up of the pattern between the two curtains and a nicely hemmed lining fabric. That's right, they're actually lined. It's a bit tricky but if you'd like to know how to make this style of curtains I could do a tutorial.

I've also been making new things for the shop, I'm inspired by Spring which I'm pretending is just around the corner. This new blue flower charm necklace is now my favourite, I had to make another one for myself. I'm certainly never going to get rich this way, but at least I'm supporting my crafts habit.
And just in case you love the curtain fabric as much as I do, I made some pouches with the leftover fabric. And I made one for myself too. Oh well!


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