I haven’t blogged in a while. To be honest I’ve hardly sat at my desk in weeks, or even gone down to the studio.
I have been dealing with some medical issues. I went to see my Dr for normal issues I get with PCOS and we decided to check my thyroid levels again. A little over a year ago I asked to have them checked and they were “normal” despite my having several issues that seemed to point towards a slow thyroid. Well this time my Dr said they were slightly elevated and that since I was complaining of symptoms I could go ahead and start synthroid, an artificial thyroid hormone. I agreed to start it and let me tell you I really did not realize how bad I had gotten until I started taking this medication. In the weeks and months up to starting synthroid I was finding it harder to focus, get going during the day, go out for more than a quick trip to the store, I felt like I had been hit by a truck many days, and found it difficult to enjoy life in general. This goes back a while but it was gradually getting worse. I was too the point where I barely had energy to shower and usually went back to bed or sat on the couch all day if I did shower. Not how I normally am at all. A week into taking the medication and I was feeling so much better. I ‘m now able to get up and be awake when the rest of my family woke in the morning, sometimes even before. I’ve started running again something I could not even think of doing a few weeks ago because I was just so tired. I can sorta keep up on house work again and I’m getting inspired to create again. I do not feel like I’m fully recovered by a long shot, I’m sure there are some adjustments in medication coming up but it’s nice to feel alive again.
On the business side of course things are pretty much still on the side lines. I’m trying to decide on a few lines to work on and moving to more of a custom order basis. I have just registered Livi Lou & Co with a modeling service so that the shop can be stocked with good photos showing how items will look in use. I will work in bits over the summer and plan for more of a full time effort in the fall when my children start school. In the mean time keep visiting us here to see what we are up too, I’ll try to post more of our daily lives.
I think most crafty people will know what is meant when the words craft room and UFO are used in the same sentence. There is this tendency to start a project and then put it aside. Perhaps you are not feeling it, or you need some random supply you forgot to buy. So you put it aside, maybe forget about it and start something new, repeat process and before you know it those UFO’s have taken over.
These are the most current cut or waiting to be cut outfits that I’ve started. Actually one of them was a birthday dress for my daughter so it’s finished. The others I plan to work on this week. They are dresses I’m hoping will be offered in the ETSY shop soon. Most of the time these move pretty quickly off the table and onto hangers or boxes waiting to go to their new forever homes. Then there is the box……..
This box lives under my machine table, it’s full of various projects I’ve started and not completed for one reason or another. I’m going to start one day a week pulling a project out of here to work on so look for updates.
Here is a project I have almost done, well it is done but I want a belt with it and can’t decide if I should find one to buy or attempt to make one. I’ll make up my mind soon but in the mean time it’s keeping my dress form warm.
Do you have UFO’s? Care to share?
Happy birthday to the Livi of Livi Lou & Co. She got a new American Girl doll and I’m sure will keep me busy making new outfits for her very soon. I finished the dress she is wearing last night, someday I will learn to read directions through before and during putting a new outfit together. I had to do a little tweeking when it was nearly done and too late to go back and fix the step I missed but it looks good on her. I’m not sure how long she will wear this style, she prefers the funky look over the traditional but for now she LOVES anything I make for her so I’ll keep sneaking in these sweet dress for a bit. Do your kids have their own style taste?
Ironing boards are great if you are ironing your husbands dress shirts, the narrow end makes pressing the small bits easier. On the other hand when your like me and needing to press a million yards of flat fabric at one time that narrow end gets in the way a bit. So I made a pressing table for the studio. This would also work well in a laundry room to be able to do quick touch ups on clothing, add pressing hams and you might be able to do away with the ironing board, bonus this doubles as a folding table (or clutter magnent if you are like me).
Here is what you will need:
- Counter hight shelving I used this wire rack from Target
- A board about the same size as the top of the rack I used an old table top from IKEA that I no longer used
- Batting such as Insul-Bright enough to cover the board and wrap under several inches
- Fabric of your choice, heavier weight fabric will hold up better, again enough to cover the board and wrap under several inces
- A staple gun
The first step is to attach your batting to your board. Lay your batting out and place your board over it, Now wrap you batting around the edges and begin to staple. I usually pull the center of each side up and tight to start with and then work out to the edges.
When your batting is fully attached to the board trim off the extra material.
Now flip the board over so you can spread your top fabric over the board. You can use pretty much any cotton fabric to cover, or the special silver ironing board fabric. I choose this fabric because it inserts a bit of color into an other wise drab space.
Once you have the fabric positioned the way you would like it on the board you need to turn the board over so you can staple the fabric like you did the batting.
I turned my edges over to give it a more finished look, you could also glue ribbon around the edge to finish it off or leave it since it’s underneath. Who’s going to see it?
It seams I didn’t get pictures of how to do the corners, to be honest I don’t have a really good technique to show. I simply pull up on the corner and tack it down then fold the extra fabric like you do when you make a bed and tack down.
And now you are ready to use your ironing surface.
I use the shelves under mine for storing supplies, right now it’s tulle, flowers, appliques, and a few old clothes to upcycle.
My parents are farmers, me not so much but I really want to try. Mostly due to our lifestyle as a military family we have not done much in the way of gardening. It seems we are always moving in our out of an area at the time you would be planting. In 14 years we have lived in 8 houses. A couple of those houses we spent a few years in but still not enough time to really establish any kind of garden other than playing with some easy to grow annuals and a few containers.
We plan to stay in this house more than a few years, and our yard is pretty much a blank slate. There is minimal landscaping that was likely done to make the house more appealing for sale, I envision raised bed gardens around the deck and fence line, some places with climbing plants. I’m starting with a few containers, and maybe some beds around the deck this year. My mom brought me a cutting for my own elder berry bush, that’s the stick int he pot on the right top. Can you say home brewed elderflower wine? Yes please. The white pots are onions also from my mom, they are a perennial onion and will stay in a container to help prevent them from taking over my garden. The top left pot is garlic, just cloves from a bunch I bought at the store. I also planted lettuce and spinach though the little bread containers are not big enough I’m sure. I just don’t have a place to put my bigger containers right now.
So this is the start of my little garden, if you want to read more about all kinds of gardening farm life visit Grama Sue’s Rainbow Farm.
In 2012 we moved, not just around the corner but around the world. I’m not going to lie, I felt pretty spoiled in our UK house because for the first time I had a room just for sewing. I was a little worried that I would not have the same kind of room when we got back to the states. We talked about living on base but decided that was just not going to work for us and after 3 years of Landlords who only fixed things after we hounded them for weeks we were not looking to rent off base either. So we bought a house, the theory that my husband will retire from the Air Force in a few years helped that choice but that’s another story. Of course a sewing room was top priority.
We put the sewing studio, the Man Cave, and the kids play room in the basement. Right now it’s unfinished, we hope that in a few years we can get it all pretty but for now it functions for what we need.
Her is a view of the machine tables
I custom made my cutting table. It’s two dressers from IKEA and a hollow core door.
I need to do a little more work on it (legs on the back are going to be needed) but it’s a nice long surface to lay patterns on.
This is an area I’m trying to stage for photography, it needs some lighting but should work really well.
Up next is my fabric storage. I’m still rebuilding my stash after using almost all of it before we moved.
When we finish the basement this corner will have a closet built around it. but for now I have this table over the sub-pump and radon mitigation system to keep the kids away from it. The table actually functions for more messy things like glue and paint. My embroidery machine is here as well.
This is my pressing table. I also custom made this to make pressing long yardages of fabric easier.
So it’s not pretty but it functions and now you know where I do the bulk of my creating.
We are moving on up!
Slowly I’m making transitions with Livi Lou & Co. 2012 was a busy year for the family but not so busy with the business, moving halfway around the world just kinda has that effect.
I’m looking forward to 2013 and all the new adventures it will bring. I’m planning to blog more not just about life in the studio but also our daily life. I want to share about essential oils, which I began to really learn more about last year, our adventures in homeschooling, and the decorating projects that pull my off track all to often. I’m also planing a store front on this page. I’m deciding on how to restructure the business side of things, with adding product lines and having more continuity.
Sit down, grab a cuppa, and enjoy our life in the studio and beyond.