Thursday, August 30, 2012

So far my plan seems to be working.

For the most part anyways.  Wednesday wasn't a great day as I slept really poorly Tuesday night and actually ended up over-sleeping so my youngest missed the bus. *sigh*  Needless to say Wednesday didn't exactly start out well.  However when I got home, (after a short nap) I got right down to work and started on a shirt.  I had plans to make a baby-doll style top with a band over the breasts and flowy pieces covering the tummy and hips.  I've done pieces like this before and they usually work well.  I say usually because this one gave me no end of trouble! I think I reworked the piece a dozen times before I finally decided to take it in a whole different directions.  I ended up making a toga style top with a single gathered shoulder.  I ended up creating a band for it that wrapped around the tummy.  Hmm, now that I think about it I basically flipped my original design upside down! LOL

Today was a better day as I slept really well and got started right around 10:30 (after a quick shower).  Today I finished 2 tops and have just the snaps to add on a third.  I'm not moving as quickly as I would like to on them, but considering the size as well as the amount of not only machine sewing but hand sewing PLUS most of the patterns need fiddled with to make them fit right.  I guess 3 pieces a day isn't too bad!

  I don't have any pictures of the tops I made, but I will try to update tomorrow with some! :-)  Instead I'll leave you with a pic of the lovely roses my husband brought home for me..."Just because!" 

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

I've decided on a plan...

I find myself very easily "oooh Shiny!" Easily distracted! LOL  And the internet is one of my worst vices.  If it's not Facebook, playing silly (starting to get really annoying) games, it's Pinterest. Or a couple other assorted things I bounce around at.

I can waste an entire day this way and accomplish absolutely nothing. :-(  Before my surgery I had started towards getting things accomplished.  I have probably about 20 pieces of Monster High clothing cut and prepped ready to sew, I have several items of home decor (also doll sized started) as well as a list (about a mile long) of things folks have asked me to consider making.  Unfortunately having my gallbladder removed (which BTW my 2 week-ish check up was Monday and the Doc says everything looks great!) really took the wind out of my sails and killed what little momentum I had going.

So this morning I decided that I will spend 7am to 9:30am each week day morning playing around online. This is while the hubby and kids are getting ready for work and school so it's not solid, but that's quite ok.  Then once my hubby leaves for work, I need to get dressed (out of my pj's) and turn OFF the internet and crank some tunes!  By 10am I plan to be settled into my desk either sewing, sculpting, shooting images or listing items in my shop!

A dear friend of mine on FB has been in the same kind of slump as me, so she decided to join me in our new 'Workplace'.  We've decided that in the evenings we will post or message each other about our progress for the day.  Kind of a way to keep each other accountable.  I am very excited about this new plan and really hope to be more productive starting tomorrow.

Why not today, you might ask?  Well I had every intention of starting today, I'd shut my computer off and was on the way to get dressed, when the phone rang. O_o...weird, it wasn't my cell and we don't have a house phone!!!  Low and behold my beloved husband had left his personal cell at home. AND he left his work phone at home as well. And since he can't do his job without THAT one I ended up driving to his office to deliver them.  Now since it's a 20 minute drive one way I decided not to waste the gas entirely and hit the Dollar Tree and Goodwill. And oh boy and I thrilled that I did!

I've been through DT loads of times looking for things either already in playscale size or that can be used as such and found a few things here and there.  TODAY however was a veritable treasure trove!  These 1st three pictures show every thing I bought and it only cost me $32!!! To the left here we have 4 t-shirts in brown, butter yellow, olive green and a blue-ish grey.  I was honestly rather surprised at the quality on these and may go back this weekend to pick more up for my 7 & 11 yr old sons to wear!  These however will become doll clothes.  Also in this pic are 10 pair of sock that will become doll sweaters and such!

Next up, started in the Back to School section with the black wire mesh organizers.  The 3 rectangles are pencil holders and are about 12 inches long.  Now I did have to pick through them a bit to make sure they stood straight, but these will make fabulous bookshelves or coat cubbies or heck even hanging wall shelves! There are 3 matching cup style cubbies as well.  The pair of smaller ones are the perfect height to be end tables and the larger one will get an upholstered cushion to become and ottoman. Simply adding a solid top instead would make a great round coffeetable!  There is also a taller pencil cup that is the perfect height for a dining table base. (I have one of those I bought a while back too!)  These wire mesh accessories also come in a 'brushed silver'  finish I am betting they would take spray paint beautifully and could become any color.  I am actually considering adding finished items made with these to my shop.  But I am still thinking about that.  The "Lamp Fresh" purple beauties are air fresheners shaped like, well, lamps! LOL  I also have a set in green, and they come in red, orange, pink and blue.  I will be pouring out the liquid air freshener and painting the interior in some neutral color. To the right of those are 2 purple class flameless candles. They also have some kind of scent disk in them.  The candles will go into some candle holders in my  real living room, but the purple holders will become with waste baskets or vases. The black torpedo looking lights are actually clip on book lights, but they are great for adding spot lighting in dioramas/set ups.  Last but not least in this image are the toothpick holders.  I love the look of the jute wrapping, so the holders will become (again) waste baskets or vases.  I was super excited to discover that the toothpicks are the fancy kind with the turned ends, so those will find uses who knows where! :-)
My last bit of supplies came from the holiday/toys/office aisles.  The cute plaster tombstone says Stay Scary. The white plaster castle will get painted beige and then a layer of sand added over top. The bag of craft/popsicle sticks have many many uses! (for me to include hopefully becoming a futon style sofa frame)  The red sofa table is in scale for 1/12th scale dollhouses, but I will be painting this one and giving it an upholstered cushion to become a small bench, like the kind you'd put at the foot of a bed. And lastly in this pic is the 3 packs of paper DIY crowns.  I bought these for the smaller sequins in them as they are the perfect size to decorate doll clothes with and at a buck I couldn't beat that price.  I am sure I will find uses for the other goodies in there but I mainly wanted the littler sequins!  Needless to say I walked out of the DT with a huge smile on my face.  OOH, I almost forgot...I gave out my business website to the woman in line behind me because she commented on my odd collection of purchases.  She said her daughters LOVED playing with their Barbies and couldn't wait to check out my site. Who knows, maybe a new customer!  *Note to self GET BUSINESS CARDS INTO PURSE!!!!*

After I left DT I headed over to our local Goodwill.  This store is a bit of a toss up as to what you'll find (if you can find it!)  I tried looking for jeans for my boys before school started, but they have NO organization for their clothes other than by style (pants, shirts, dresses, etc) or color.  Now don't get me wrong the rainbow is really pretty, but I refuse to spend hours scouring through 3 racks of jeans hoping I might find a pair of boy jeans, let alone in a size I needed!!!  But today I had a mission and since color was my goal and size didn't really matter things were much easier.  I've gotten a commission for some Monster High guy clothes, to include a green-ish, plaid-ish button down. Surprisingly I didn't have anything like this in my fabric stash! O_O So I hit up the kids clothing and started pulling out little boys plaid shirts in the right colorway.  I found these 4 shirts for a total of $6!!! The far right one I actually a little girls shirt with a green and red plaid but I think it will be great for the upcoming Christmas season!  My customer has given me a fair bit of creative leeway with this design as long as it goes with the wig she has chosen for her guy.  Now I just need to find a good pattern that work. I really need to find the rest of my Barbie patterns, as shirts for dear old Babs, actually fit the MH guys pretty well with minimal adjustments.  I am really excited to get working on these for her!
Lastly for today was the first piece in a special custom order for a friend.  His poor Lagoona ran into a spot of trouble while at the beauty salon.  She is having a bit of eye trouble, so he asked me to create some stylish eye patches for her to wear.  Since I was just toying with the design to try and get it right this is what I came up with.  He is really pleased with the prototype, so I will be creating a few edgier pieces for her as well.  This one is velvet with white and gold feathers and topaz rhinestones! =D

Thanks for hanging around with me!  Hopefully I will be back tomorrow or Thursday with an update on how my new 'work' schedule is going!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Hi Friends!

I hope everyone has been having a wonderful weekend.  I'm doing well. Recovery is going good, I think.  I have my 2 week (-ish) Post Surgery appointment tomorrow, I think I'll get a good review! hehe

 I have been working on a few commissioned orders as well as some more fun goodies for my shop. First up are my Slime Cheesecakes with Candied Eyeballs.  (In case you hadn't guessed I'm working on a line that will be more Monster High/ Halloween themed =D)

 I am really happy with how these turned out and will be making several of them (once my new shipment of mini plates arrive!)

So in addition to the peach, strawberry and (soon to be) tropical cheesecakes that are perfect for everyday eats, I will have these fun, vibrant, slightly creepy sweets. 

Eventually I plan to do drinks with eyeballs, as well as cookies decorated with larger eyeball design.

Next up are these 2 fang-tastic cutie cupcakes. Ironically they were supposed to be purple, but the frosting mix I made when cured turned this cute shade of pink.  I think they will be a hit with Draculaura! ;-)  They are decorated with sliced eye candies, frosting noses and painted mouth details.  They are vanilla cake in white wrappers.

I am planning several other ghoulish food ideas including several cupcake designs, candy corn items, as well as some decorated cakes.

Of course if you can think of some fun, festive and spooky foods (sweet OR savory) I'd love to hear about them!

<---- Was something I was super excited about.  I wanted to decorate cupcakes with tiny bats, pumpkins, ghosts and such, but honestly didn't want to have to try and sculpt them. 

So I pulled out my Halloween paper punches from the leftovers of my scrap-booking stash and punched out a few pieces from Shrink Plastic.  AND yippee skippy, it WORKED!!!  So now I have mini black licorice bat gummies!!!  I will be punching out tons more of these. (I can only do about 50 at a time as it takes a bit of pressure and makes my hands hurt! LOL)  But I will have orange pumpkins, white bones and black bats.  And that' just for halloween! =D

My box of completed Monster High fashions is filling up nicely, although I am still lacking in solid tops to mix with the patterned skirts.  That will be my goal this week.  I have several pieces cut and prepped I just need to get them sewn and decorated.

My current commission schedule includes those above mentioned tropical cheesecakes which involve creating a strawberry cane.  I am not looking forward to this as in the past my strawberry canes have not turned out well.  But I am bound and determined to get it right this time!  Also on the books are some stylish eye patches for a Monster High ghoul who had an unfortunate incident at the beauty salon, as well as a Parisian picnic, a pair of English Jubilee picnics and several new commissioned MH outfits.

Until next time, my friends!

Saturday, August 18, 2012

I do believe I jinxed myself!

Last week I was thinking how about this time last year was when I ruptured the disk between my L4 and L5 vertabrae, so I had been just the tiniest bit paranoid of doing anything that might cause a repeat of said injury.  So needless to say when I got a stomach ache around 2:30am Wednesday morning I didn't really think much of it...for the first hour.  Then I tried everything I could think of to get it to go away. Switching positions didn't help, using the restroom didn't help, a hot bath helped a bit, but one can't exactly go to sleep in the tub. (My husband would have been very annoyed to find my drowned in the tub! O_O)  By quarter after 5, I was starting to get really worried so I woke my husband up to ask his opinion. (He has had a little bit of combat medic training, so I had hoped he might have some answers)  We hemmed and hawed about whether or not to go to the hospital.  I'm not a big fan of them myself, I tend to be pretty healthy. But when hubby suggested I search online for my symptoms and the 30 foot walk had me in severe pain I KNEW it was time to go. And it was a good thing we did. Turns out I had several gallstones and my gallbladder was in the beginning stages of an infection.  The Doc decided not to wait and scheduled me for surgery that afternoon to remove it! 

Now of course this couldn't have happened at a worse time for a mom as we were supposed to go meet the boys teachers Wednesday afternoon so they (6th and 2nd grade) could start school on Thursday.  Well the boys weren't too upset to get 2 extra days of Summer vacation! LOL  I came home Thursday afternoon and have been recovery slowly here.  I am still very sore and tired, but very glad to be out of the hospital.  I know many of you are friends with me on Facebook and already know all this, but I'd just like to take a minute to THANK everyone who sent prayers, healing thoughts and good wishes my way. They were and are very appreciated!

It's been ages since I posted and I have been busy doing things, so I will hopefully take this recovery time to try and catch up on my blogging and hopefully my shop as well.