Tropical bird rainbow napkins

The Easter Bunny brought my mother a set of 8 homemade cloth napkins with a tropical pattern on one side of each and a bright pattern fabric on the other side.  I walked passed the primary material at Joann when I was there to buy fabric dye and I actually did a double take, back-tracking to pick up the bolt of fabric for further examination.

Why do I like this? I asked myself.  What would I do with this?  Why can’t I shake the feeling that my mom would like it?  What would she do with two yards of gaudy tropical birds?  After much puttering back and forth and even a phone call to find out if she would use a set of silly, bright cloth napkins (answer: no), I bought some of the fabric anyway.  Later she sent me an email saying that she would in fact use them if they were sturdy and large enough to be practical rather than decorative, which was good because I had already started assembling them.

I have spent a non-zero number of minutes folding and refolding the napkins and just admiring them in rainbow order on my coffee table.  As long as I can remember I’ve liked things ordered by color.  In elementary school my sock drawer was carefully organized in rainbow order.  (It was 1991, I had many slouchy socks of different colors.)  Any crayons, colored pencils, and markers I’ve owned throughout the years have been re-ordered in their boxes.  My closet is sorted by hue.  It’s so pleasing to the mind, just look!

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April 24, 2011. Tags: , , . Pictures, Projects, Words. 1 comment.

Bar stools refashion

Before                                                                  After

I updated two tall bar chairs with blue fabric.  I got the chairs, along with a tall bistro table that is still at my old house until I transport it to the apartment, free from a friend’s mother a couple years ago when she was downsizing.  I’ve never been super keen on the stripey seat covers and finally got around to changing them, which took half an hour with the aid of a screwdriver, some packing tape, and a drill.

I was surprised to find that I didn’t have as much fabric in my stash as I expected that would fit two chairs.  I chose the blue Galaxy print for now.  The previous person had added the striped material using duct tape, and I did my reupholstering with packing tape because it’s what I had on hand.

July 10, 2010. Tags: , , , . Pictures, Projects, Words. 1 comment.

New pretty fabric bulletin board


I bought a large bulletin board from Goodwill during the last 50% Off Saturday Sale.  My original plan when looking for another bulletin board was to pull off the frame, paint the borders, and reattach the edges.  The only large one at the store that day was half bulletin/half whiteboard, and the pressed wood edges didn’t seem like they’d take kindly to being pulled off and reattached.  I bought it anyway because at $3.50 the price was right.

As I mulled it over, I realized the back would work with pushpins.  I painted the whole thing with my favorite paint leftover from my dining chairs.  (You can see one of the dining chairs in the bottom picture.)  I didn’t even have to take it outside because I had left some cardboard trash by the back door for several days somebody was storing a cardboard box in the sun room and it was a great protective surface when flattened out, and the low VOCs paint didn’t fill the house with poisonous gases when painting indoors.

A piece of turquoise print fabric was the perfect size, thus validating my purchase of the fabric when I hadn’t had anything particular in mind for it at the time besides really liking the color.  The fabric is attached with clear pushpins, which means I can change it with ease down the line.  I might give the same treatment to the other bulletin board with a quieter fabric.

February 21, 2010. Tags: , , , . Pictures, Projects, Words. 2 comments.

Sewing Room Progress! Plus fabric drawers

I worked in my sewing room tonight for almost two hours, unpacking several bags and boxes of what turned out to be a lot of garbage.  I found a picture of me from senior year of college looking softer around the edges than I realized at the time — 15+ extra pounds will do that to a woman who is 5’2″.  I also found quite a few stamped addressed envelopes with nothing in them.  Apparently I planned to send a lot of letters whatever year stamps were 37 cents and didn’t follow through with all of them.

I put away the goodies I won in a Confessions of a Sewing Dork giveaway awhile ago.  As I picked up the fabric, I experienced a twinge of anxiety as to where I would file it.  With the yellows because of its chartreuse background, or with the purple because of the print?  When I opened my drawer I saw the fabric and said out loud, “Oh!” in delight.  For some reason, the yellows and purples were right next to each other in the drawer!  I didn’t have to choose!  It was so perfect!  Perfect for today, anyway, I’ll do a rainbow-order update of the drawers before the end of the 28 Day Organizing Challenge.

In other news, I found a lone unwrapped Swedish Fish in a sack of old papers and cds, sitting in the collection of lint and  occasional dog hair at the bottom of the bag.  It had been there for at least 18 months.  After much consideration, I did not eat it.  Barely.

February 4, 2010. Tags: , . Links, Pictures, Words. 2 comments.

Dinosaur fabric and blueberry cake

I added the border to my zigzag baby quilt and pressed it all nice and crisp.  I’ll probably use this soft flannel dinosaur fabric from Joann for the backing.  On a whim last fall I made curtains from the same material, backed with a bright teal flannel, for the bathroom off the master bedroom.  The thickness helps block out the sun and heat during these 115 degree Heat Advisory days, and it provides insulation in the drafty window during the winter when we rarely turn on the heat.

dinosaur flannel

In other news, I ate a third of an entire cake for dinner.  I cooked fresh blueberries (only $1 per pint at Sunflower Market through tomorrow!) in a saucepan with a bit of sugar, water, and corn starch until thickened, squishing most of the berries to release their innards.  I split a single 9 inch layer in half (the other half of the batter became cupcakes), filled the from-a-box cake with the cooled blueberry sauce, and then frosted it with fresh whipped cream.  I was going to eat leftover pea soup for dinner and maybe roast some brussel sprouts with olive oil and rosemary, and instead I kept eating more cake.  I regret nothing!

Blueberry-filled cake

July 28, 2009. Tags: , , , , . Links, Pictures, Projects, Recipes, Words. 2 comments.