URL: http://api.my.yahoo.com/rss/ping Parameter(s): u= HTTP method: GET Mama's Doodles: February 2007



I don't think they come much cuter than this:

While purchasing bits and bobs to make the wedding tutu, I grabbed materials for two more that will soon be added to my Etsy shop. Still following my urge to make the tutus 100% original, I haven't yet duplicated a design. I just Looooooooove how these turned out.

Shimmery tulle in off-white and pink. And some irredescent sashes to top them off. They are gorgeous and almost too pretty for every day play, even though that is their intention. The sash ribbons were purchased on the ribbon bolt, all packaged in plastic. I really like how the ribbon holds it's form, however it has a teensy-weensy wire in the edge of it (which was not mentioned on the packaging, by the way!) The wire is totally encased in the ribbon, and so skinny it's almost insignificant, but I do kind of wish it weren't there.

I'm still playing around with ways to photograph these ~ and still failing. Unfortunately, I always take photos of creations while the wee one sleeps. They'd probably be better on a live model, but I'm always afraid she'll ruin them by falling in a puddle of chocolate or something -- & not to mention that I'd have to tame her bedhead and find matching clothes, etc. It's a complication that I should probably tackle though, huh?

I think these tutu designs are perfect to embellish a child for profesisonal photographs, or maybe a wedding. They'd be a perfect birthday girl or special event outfit. They're just so perfect and sweet, they could potentially rot teeth!

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Priorities are a juggle around here. I often avoid posting to this site, when I don't have any pictures to share. I also often reserve photos of my daughter for her own site, Kenzie's Doodles , but we've been seeing a lot of this lately. Kenzie seems to think she's a dog. A LOT. Hmnn... Doggies don't talk as much as Kenzie does. But, they do weird things like lick people.

I had a nice lovely lazy day with a gal pal yesterday. We did lunch and hung out at my house all day, letting the kids run around like baboons. I'm expecting to be rewarded with a nice long nap today - as Kenzie didn't take one yesterday. Speaking of naps: I am redoing a corner desk for her room, a project which is being crammed into the naptimes this past week. We are also enjoying really sunny warm (haha. 50-60ish degrees warm anyway) days outside, taking long nature walks, playing with the kids in the 'hood, etc.

Suddenly, I've had another surge in tutu business. My Etsy shop has been depleted of tutus, boutiques want more, AND I've just got a custom order for one with off-white tulle and a champagne sash. To debut in a WEDDING. On the flower girl. How cute is that??

We'll also be taking Kelli's lead and practicing Calculated Acts of Kindness. I don't know if I'll be able to post our accomplishments with any consistency, but I think it's a valuable thing to do with the Kenzie-girl. We've got lots of ideas all based in simple generosities. Some will be artistic, some will be just thoughtful gestures, all will be based in the sentiment of teaching my young daughter universal grace, kindness and goodwill.

The point is (in Kelli's words): to plan good acts during the next 40 days and to do so with a “pay it forward” attitude. By simply starting with the little things — holding open a door for a stranger, helping a neighbor with their trash cans, complimenting the woman who makes your coffee every morning — we can make our world better.

One person at a time, we are conducting a campaign of calculated acts of kindness.
Won’t you join us?

Anyway - I'll juggling things around here. The house is nice and clean from a manic spring-cleaning binge. Packages are ready to ship. Corner desks are half done. And, we've got mandatory items on the to-do list. Just in time for a weekend....

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My Saturday:

Clearly my day was ROUGH.

Library card style to do lists.... By John Blyberg. Have fun with your own here.



The Bogeyman, snakes & a skirt

Brrr. It's cold. The past few days have been extremely chilly - although thank goodness we didn't quite reach the rumored -2 degrees, as far as I'm aware. With the chilly winds, I've found myself catching a bit of a breeze INSIDE. So.... Kenzie's naptimes have found me making "snakes" for all the windows. I'm thrilled they seem to be working! Although, I used up quite a bit of nice courdoroy to make them. It was either use the stash, or leave the house for the store. I don't leave the house unless I have to.

Having filled all the drafty windows with snakes, I moved on to tackling my bogeyman. A zipper!!! has been successfully inserted into my skirt, and the skirt is complete. Well kind of. I originally saw a skirt in a catalog, and being one that pirates ideas rather than buying from the store - I started my own version. This was supposed to have some free form stitching action, and some flowery embellishing action in the front brown panel.

After making the skirt much too large for myself, I had to take some inches off here and there... And, with that I realized that the shiny-ish brown fabric isn't too receptive to that kind of thing. So, I called it good. It's best not to create a puckery eye sore! I like funky clothing, and I love skirts. This one has two layers, a gauzy underlayer, and an A-line overlayer. It's different, and will look great with the shirt I'm envisioning for it. (the photo includes the T-shirt I was wearing today, however...unintentionally kind of matching)

I've tackled my bogeyman head on and won't be afraid of zippers anymore. Now.. if only I can invent a "snake" that might keep my bits and pieces warm when I wear this skirt out in the frigid weather.... AND, learn how to take flattering pictures of myself in skirts. Those two things would make me a happy camper.

Thanks again Kelli for the zips!!!

***I must have pissed off the snow lords. When I started this post it was nice outside. I turn around a few minutes later - and it's maniacally snowing outside. (Ah, curse words!!!!).

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Freezer Paper Stencils

On January 22, I pulled this bit out of the newspaper. A Freezer Paper Stenciling tutorial. Even longer ago - Amy of: My Land tipped me off to where I could find freezer paper - which had previously elluded me in my community. Even longer than that ago, I had grabbed these onesies at the dollar store, intending to give them to my daughter to clothe her stuffed friends with, (she likes to dress them in her own clothing, which is getting toooooo big).

So, on this chilly day, after shoveling my driveway AGAIN, I came in and decided to give the Freezer Paper Stencils a try. These are some silly little sketches that I had in a sketchbook, which were simple enough to create templates from. By golly, they ARE easy. I was a little slow out of the gate, but now I want to freezer paper stencil everything in sight!

I noticed that if you click on the picture, it blows the images up -- waaaaay up. The edges aren't as messy as they appear in this photo, but I confess I could have done a more perfect job. The princess leg is a little imperfect, and the birds beak could be sharper. But, a stuffed lion is most likely going to be wearing these after all. This was merely an experiment for me - as I was half expecting something to go horribly wrong. Next time, I'll work on perfect.

Other freezer paper tutorials can be found here.



My Valentine

Here begins the week where we force our daughter to wear all the Valentine inspired clothing ONCE that she's receiving as holiday gifts. I'm also having pell-mell thoughts for other Valentine's crafts, which I'm forcing to remain a figment of my imagination - as it's too late to mail them off as gifts. (especially since I still have those zippers to tackle!!)

Last night, at our weekly dinner at the in-laws abode - I found myself admiring the centerpiece. My mother-in-law takes table decor very seriously. After dinner, she started handing out Valentines gifts and..what do you know..a replica of the centerpiece became mine.

Today is another gloomy wintry day for me. Rain is falling, soon to become more snow, I think. This whimsical thing is embellishing my space and perhaps my mood. Unfortunately, it will only burn during my daughter's nap - as she's all too aware that it's edible.

To build one yourself: Use a glass vase (this one is 7" x 7"), filled half full with sweethearts. Float another glass votive with candle in the middle. Simply sweet.



Zipper phobia

I have admitted to a select few that I have a zipper phobia. I have never, ever, tried to insert one into my creations. I even have a few projects that have sat on idle, while I considered alternatives - anything - that might work instead of using a zipper. Last week, I went to the craft store in search of a zipper for a skirt I made for myself. I thought it ought to be time to overcome this silly avoidance. Perplexed by the selection, which all seemed to be in excess of seven inches long - I emailed Kelli of African Kelli . She'd made some pouches with ZIPPERS & designed a tutorial, and therefore that raised her to a "knowledgable expert," in my books.

Kelli is one of my newer blog friends. She's full of whit, an excellent resource for a poor-cooker like me, a fellow non-eater of meat, and damn, is she quick on the email! She'd also scored a zipper stash off ebay and buzzed these right over to me. I doubt it's by mistake - but she even sent zippers that match the colors of my usual work. Heck, they even match my blog! That girl, is so thoughtful. Thanks Kelli. You're gesture & generosity are appreciated.

Now, with zippers in hand, along with some coaching from Kelli - I WILL overcome this pesky little fright I have about utilizing a zipper. I will also remind myself that each flub-up, is only a seam-ripper away from perfection. I've tripped and fumbled my way through teaching myself how to sew. I've avoided all the fancy machine "feet." I've never even tried one of the fancy-schmancy stitches on my machine.
It's time. Time to get better.

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Doodle letters

I was quite the multi-tasker today. While on a conference call staff meeting for several hours, I doodled around with the new nickname letters for Kenzie's room. I painted 'em red and then added paper to the tops. I also repainted our old set {which spelled out Kenzie}, so that they were red as well. I'm quite pleased with them. They're wonky, whimsical and fun.

I sanded around the edges a bit, added some drybrushed complimentary colors, and voila:

The room scene also reflects the pillows I made recently. The quilt top was also given to me by a relative. I backed it and tied it with buttons. Lot's of my work is reflected in this little photo, I guess!

(the letters were purchased from Deb at Say it with Letters. She has some really fabulous & unique letters! Go check them out.)




Yesterday was a good day for mail. One, I was expecting. The other was a pleasant surprise.

The expected: Letters for my daughter's room. Her nickname is "doodle." I'll embellish them and add them to the wall, along with her first name (which we already have). I bought these from Deb @ Say it With Letters. The letters are very intricate, and superb quality. Whenever child number two enters the picture over here - I'll be heading straight over to buy more.

And the surprise: A little pouch and some goodies from Beki @ Artsy Crafty Babe. A thank you & valentine gift. Such a sweet gesture, and MAN, her pouch making skills are impeccable! If you need a pouch, head straight over to her Etsy shop!

I'm off to go play with my letters now!



Superbowl crafting

Thanks to my major disinterest in football - I did get some "in process" projects completed thanks to the Super Bowl: 1. our replacement owl dressed has been dressed in some wings. 2. I also hand-stitched my twin pillows closed.

Today, we have an emergency unicorn adjustment on the agenda. Kenzie has been wearing a full-body unicorn/pegasus costume that's too short for her. I dunno if it's possible, but I'm going to see if I can make it "taller." (***edited to add: I did it. I sure can't claim to be an expert costume designer, but it's a bit taller now!)

My sis-in-law was over last night for the football viewing. She's a physical therapist - and performed some mobility checks on my wrist. She ruled out carpal tunnel -- yeah!!!! She ruled in -- tendonitis.

Today, my wrist is markedly better. I dunno if it's from the stretching and pulling, or if it just ran it's course. According to my SIL, continued movement and use is much advised, rather than babying it and waiting for the pain to subside. Therefore, I no longer have any excuses for my lack of productivity. (well, except for those February blues).



My February Funk

Foul weather, fading Christmas memories, failed resolutions and a lack of motivation conspire to depress. Oh, my least favorite month of the year has begun. Our first winter back in the Midwest is wearing on me... I've got a sore case of missing California, and it only seems to get worse as the cold days keep presenting. I'd really just like to bundle up with a blanket, cover my head and sleep until spring. But my daughter doesn't so much agree. Lucky for me, she still finds charm in the simplest of activities...and stuffed friends.

Long ago, I made Kenzie a stuffed owl. After a bout with the flu, the owl was a victim of her "tummy yuckies" & became trash. It left us a year ago. I've only started it's replacement this past week. And if this delay in reproducing her owl isn't the ultimate sign of lack of motivation... I'm only posting this little guy to insure I freaking finish it. A blog post insures commitment!

The owl will have wings. I fiddled with this wonky and easy wavy quilty weavy piece of patchwork to create the wings from. The wings have been created, yet still need to be attached to the body. I've still got a skirt for myself that needs a waist of some sort. I also have my twin pillows to sew closed. Some Kenzie clothes which need to be finished. Some freezer paper stencils to be stenciled. Winter is beating me down. Hard. I must claw myself back to the verge of a productive artful life. One where there seems to be beginnings -and- conclusions. Good grief, can I finish something already???

Cramzy's tutorial for the easy wavy quilty weavy piece, which I'll be making lots more of.

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