Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Craft Closet Re-do

There is a really good reason that this blog doesn't cover house decor and design. I'm pitiful at it. There are spaces that I've tried to do up pretty, but it's just not something I'm very good at. My craft room is no exception. When we moved into this house over 3 years ago, I was thrilled to have a dedicated space for me to work in. I quickly realized that the space had absolutely no storage. I worked around it creating piles, plastic bins, and a mess that would move and shuffle around depending on what I was working on.

Here's where I get real. Get ready to Pinterest this one, folks.


It just wasn't working in a way that really helped me be creative. I started to feel like I was drowning in stuff. It was paralyzing and made it hard to create. 
So Mark and I crunched numbers and decided to call in help. We had used a local branch of the Closet and Storage Concepts company in our townhome and were always so excited by what they came up with. The same designer, Michelle, came out, listened to me ramble, and didn't even balk when I showed her the space. She saw a vision for the whole room and was eager to help. We had her draw up plans and then decided that for now all we could financially handle was the closet space. I'm hoping to get more done in this room at a later date because her ideas were amazing. I felt like she really understood what I needed to make this my dream space.

This is what the closet looked like after install. 


The amount of storage space was amazing. I had shelves and drawers and could finally put things somewhere! I probably sat in front of the empty closet for a good hour trying to decide where to put things and where to get started. Part of me wanted to throw everything out and leave these looking so neatly empty!

Here is the work in progress:


It's not done, but I've already been way more productive over the last month than in a really long time. It feels good to have space to move around and set places for everything. Mia has claimed the bottom drawer as her own and her crafty projects are being kept there. I ended up need to buy new fabric bins to fit into the smaller spaces. These are from IKEA. The kid's scrapbooks fit all along the bottom so they can pull them out whenever they want. For now my quilting stuff is on the left side of the closet and the Project Life stuff is on the right. The drawers have all my various supplies, bigger yardage of fabrics, quilt kits, and mailing supplies. The first empty space above the drawers is where I'm currently keeping incoming fabric until it can get filed away by color.
We have a long way to go to make the whole space into my dream space, but already I'm feeling a difference.
I'm hoping to share some of the wall space and inspiration wall soon!

As much as I wish it were, this post is not sponsored. I just really like the company and would highly recommend them for your storage needs. If you are in Colorado, ask for Michelle. She's wonderful!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Sharing Project Life

I've adopted an easy-going approach to working on my Project Life over the past few weeks. I'm not worrying about getting a spread done over the course of one week. Instead, I'm printing a couple of times a week until I have enough photos to get a spread done. It's working for this time of year, when I've got my hands full of other crafts and chores. 

This week's spread closes out the first book of 2014. I've found that around July is when the book starts to get too heavy to carry around and it feels full. I've got the second book ready to go. 
It seemed fitting to close this half with 4th of July pictures. 
I used the Kiwi kit and cards from the Seasons kit this week. The colors are a bit all over the place, but I don't mind. I like the overall brightness of it!


For the first half, I chose pictures from my sister's visit. We spent time crawdad fishing with the kids and even got an almost kid-free day of thrifting and fabric store shopping. 
I love when she comes to visit and the house fills with the sounds of cousins running around everywhere. 


My niece, Aniyah, stayed with us through the weekend for the 4th of July. Mia and Aniyah have always been close and so it was good to have them together. For the 4th we spent the morning at our town's Symphony in the Park celebration. The afternoon was spent relaxing and waiting out a rainstorm. In the evening we went to watch the fireworks from the parking lot of Mia's dance studio. They always provide glow sticks for the kids and lots of space to ride scooters, play catch with koosh balls, and have a front row spot for the fireworks. Naomi fell asleep during the show and it got pretty cold, but it was a fun night. 
The cards from the Seasons kit are an easy way to signify what holiday it is without going too over the top with embellishments.


You can find out more about Project Life here

Monday, July 14, 2014

Summer Slow Down



The kids are in no hurry to get out the door on our mornings off from summer camp and planned outings. They live in last night's PJs or yesterday's dirty clothes. It's a good reminder to slow down, to let them battle it out, play, and see where the day takes us. It can be a headache too because the noise can get loud way before 8AM. There are tears, negotiations, and a super controlling big sister to dictate how the game should be played. I tend to busy myself with chores and crafts all in an effort to stay out of the line of fire. If I stay out of the way, they figure out a way to make the play work and I get a few things done. 

It's all part of summer and as I get older I realize why my mom kicked us out of the house for most of the days. I'm pretty sure it was the only thing that kept her sane amid all the bickering and loud play. I realize how fortunate my kids are that three days a week they we all get a break in the form of summer camp. My siblings and I didn't have that and instead spent the days torturing each other and terrorizing the neighborhood. There are fond memories that come with summer because of the freeness of our days. I miss that for my kids, but also feel torn between this want to give them space and the fear that comes with letting them go too far out of sight. I'm working on setting boundaries for all of us that give them the space to play free and don't make me too worried for them.

I am grateful for these slower mornings because they remind me to listen to them. If I slow down too, I can see that they don't need (or want) a full schedule, planned activities, or much direction from me. They just want the time to explore and live in this moment of summer.
It's liberating and I'll take it. 






Monday, July 07, 2014

Sharing Project Life


This week I picked up a new set of Sharpie pens and wanted to use them to play with on Project Life. I am really impressed with how smooth they are and how easily it was to switch from writing on the photos to writing on the journaling cards. If you're looking for a new pen to try I recommend these for sure! FYI: This isn't a sponsored post. I just wanted to share with you a new fun find!

This week I used the blue from my sky photos as a theme. All cards are from the Kiwi kit. I also noticed a theme of the word today on the journaling cards and added more tags with that word on it.

Here's the whole week:


Close up on the left side:


The right here card from the Kiwi kit is perfect for my beloved feet shots. This one was right after a gym workout. I love when I find letters in the asphalt out in the wild. I also snapped a photo this week of the amazing sunset.


It's been a while since I got a photo of the Target trip. Spending some time reading the books has been their favorite thing to do for a long time!
I also took the kids crawdad fishing this week for the first time. 
They loved it and we've already been back to try it again!


Close up on the right side:


This week Mark and I had a breakfast and IKEA date. I love setting the iPhone on the table and snapping a shot of the table. It provides a great perspective that captures the morning perfectly!


We are in full summer mode here. For us that means popsicles whenever we want them and a lot of time outside. Getting shots of the kids playing is really hard, but the blurry bodies and late afternoon light shows the mood of our days. 



You can find out more about Project Life here.

Monday, June 30, 2014

Sharing Project Life

I've been playing around a little bit with Project Life. After all, it's summer and I've barely got time to breathe let alone sit down and play with photos. I'm letting myself off the hook with completing a spread each week and just printing as I can throughout the week. I'm finding it kind of liberating and feeling like for now, it's just what I need. 


This week there were no journaling cards. Just some label stickers and photos taken of our various summer adventures. It's enough to tell the story of our busy days and capture this moment in our lives.

You can find out more about Project Life here.

Friday, June 27, 2014

Economy Block Quilt--Yellow Edition

Yes, I shared these pics before, but I realized I had more to say about this beauty of quilt!!


I can't even begin to tell you how much I love I-Spy quilts. It's my one chance to really get to play with fabrics that I might not otherwise use. I also love watching my own kids notice all the different elements and create their own connections to what they see. 
For this one, I knew I wanted to challenge myself by not using a typical "girl" color for the overall design. I found this gorgeous vintage floral fabric and knew it would be perfect on the back.


I absolutely love a good novelty fabric and picking ones that could serve a little girl well is really fun. I have everything from unicorns, to cameras, and summer fruit on this quilt. I steered away from too many characters and instead tried to pull from my selection of vintage inspired novelties.


This quilt is available for sale in my Etsy store. It is ready to go to a new home and to a special little girl. I can also make a custom quilt to fit your needs and specifications! Contact me for more information!

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Retreat Sewing

This past weekend my quilt guild had a retreat up in the beautiful Estes Park. It's hard to be in such a beautiful setting and not be inspired to create. I woke early every morning and made sure to sit in the sunshine with my tea and soak in the magic of the mountain air. We took a couple of walks and made the most of our time up there.

One of my favorite things was all the time I had to sew. I haven't had this much dedicated sewing time in forever. I was able to check off quite a bit of work from my quilting to do list! 

I finished a mini quilt for my swap partner (for the #schnitzelandboominiswap) in reds and blues. 


I finished a block for the Boulder County Flood Quilt project. I'm discovering more and more that I am not very good with creating my own patterns. I dubbed this one the pyramids block. It's a far cry from the Flatirons I was trying to capture.


I also made a second block to submit from a pattern called the Colorado Star. It turned out beautifully and I'm pretty proud to donate it to the project. 


I worked on bee blocks and a few steampunk blocks. My favorite finish was my second girl's economy block I-spy quilt. I backed it with vintage fabric and used some Denyse Schmidt for the binding. It turned out beautifully! I'm listing it for sale in my Etsy shop and hoping to send it to a home soon!




I'm spending the next few days working on reorganizing my sewing space and then it's back to the machine!!