Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Ontario Scrapbook expo

Oh my Gosh! I have completely forgottten to right about the scrapbook expo I went to this past weekend. I've been so busy with the costumes and blanket. I 'll post a picture later of the things I bought.

I've been to THREE expos this year. Of the 3, I think this location was my favorite. It was just big enough. The location was better for me too. I did notice some vendors missing that I'd seen at the other expos, specifically, Creative Memories. I needed to buy a new tape runner and ended up buying another brand b/c they were missing.

Anyway, I took 3 classes and I'll write more info later. The good thing is I left with 13 12x12 layouts that just need pictures!! Yay. I signed up for the Storytellers monthly club and left with 5 free kits for signing up. It's on a month by month basis so you can cancel at any time and return whatever you don't want.

I arrived at 9am and saw Maria M and her sister Jessica. Then I saw Norma at around 10:30. She bought the Hobby Hideaway. Then later saw Monica twin around noon. Later I saw Monique and then later still Irene. I had a really nice time.
I was assisted by Michele in getting Omari to and from school and by Maria in picking up Naiobi. Thanks!

Baby Quilt for Baby Do

This is only my 2nd time making a quilt. It went fairly smoothly except when it came to putting the quilt sandwich together (backing, batting [that's the stuff that goes in the middle], and quilt top. For some reason I thought that the batting was supposed to be smaller than the other 2 pieces. Turns out the batting and backing are supposed to be larger. OH well. I was really careful when sewing it together and it came together just fine. All the sides almost meet up perfectly when you fold it too, so I think that's quite a sucess!!! The hilarious thing about this blanket is that the backing has an unexpected little detail in it. Can you find it? That's right! There are little green and blue playboy bunnies in there! Now, I totally didn't see them until I was actually quilting the thing. I didn't know what to do, so I just went ahead and used it.

I made this for my co-worker April who's baby boy is due next month. I really like it and both my girls really liked it too. They both said they want one and Naiobi specifically said she wanted a little one for her baby.

Halloween Costumes (Pirate Family)

Happy Halloween everyone! I don't know why I love Halloween so much. I mean, I don't put up decorations or anything, but I just love it! Here are some pictures of the costumes I made. This picture of the 4 of us was taken at a Halloween party we went to on Saturday. We were all "gung ho" to go to another on Sunday but that got cancelled by Baby Gabriel's arrival. The only part of Kevin's costume that I made was the vest. I just measured it off of one of his shirts. It's not even hemmed.

As for mine and the girls' costumes, they are all the same. Except, mine is a skirt and top and theirs is a dress. I wanted it to be as easy as possible for them to put on. I figured they might also use them for play and I wanted them to be able to get them on without assistance. I had to jimmy both mine and Omari's tops. They were both too small in the armpits. I didn't care about how they looked as they are only costumes.

The corsets I made with one long rectangular piece. The material has a little bit of stretch to it and I lined it with some stretchy polyester (same material as the skirt). I even made the shoe covers! I had a bit of a hard time figureing that out, but afterall, they're only for costumes so no biggie. I made those out of craft felt.

I don't know where we will be trick or treating yet. Probably at Maria's like last year. Omari is reminding me that it was a lot of fun. What I remember was walking, and walking, and walking forever! I will cut it short this year. I'm not used to trick or treating for hours. We previously only took the girls out for about 20 minutes around the neighborhood and that was it.

Anyway, be safe and brush your teeth!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Another pair of under shorts

Guess what? I was able to get another pair of shorts out of that same t-shirt I did the tutorial with. I ended up using the curve of the armhole for the center front seams. I'll have to post how I did that too. But not tonight. It's 11:20p and I've still got to make lunches for tomorrow and clear all the sewing stuff of the kitchen table. It would be nice to have my own sewing space.

Tutorial: T-shirt into Shorts

So may daughter needs to wear shorts under her skirts. This is understandable seeing as to how she's only 7 and still likes to jump, crawl, climb and do somersaults regardless of what she's wearing (and she prefers to wear skirts and dresses). I have made her shorts to wear under them using tank tops and t-shirts that I and my husband are getting ready to take to Goodwill. It's quite easy and I thought I'd post a tutorial in case someone is interested.

First lay out your shirt and make sure the part underneath isn't wrinkled.

Fold the shirt in half.

Lay your pattern on top if you have one. If not, this works just as well. Be sure to leave enough of a seam allowance and go an inch over the waistband so you have enough to create a waistband.

Now open up up what you've just cut out. I've indicated your seams where the white lines are.

Once those seams are sewn, open up the shorts so that the seams end up in the center front and center back. Now you're going to sew the crotch seam at the bottom in once continous line.

Now fold the shorts this way. You are going to create a very shallow smile. You need only do it half-way. So, from the right edge to the middle of the shorts.

You can see it very slightly here.

But when you open it up you can see that it is about an inch lower. The lower side will be the front, belly part.

You will then make a casing by folding down 3/4" to 1"inch. You will sew all the way around, leaving open enought space to thread the elastic through. Once you do that, sew the elastic together and sew the opening closed.

I used foldover elastic because I have tons of it.

Quilt, Craft, Sew expo in Pomona, CA

I went to this expo today. It runs for 3 days. It costs $8 and you can get in all 3 days with the same ticket. I had a coupon that I received via email for 1/2 off so I was ready to pay my $4. But as I was waiting in line a lady showed up with coupons for a free entrance! Hooray!

I went through the whole thing in 2 hours. There were 3 aisles, most of them filled with quilting things. Quilt kits, rulers, mats, patterns, quilting machines, embroidery machines, and all kinds of tools that would be useful for a quilter. I am not a quilter. But I did enjoy looking at all the beautiful quilts that were laid out and was pleased that they offered patterns to copy them and even entire kits that included all the fabric one would need to complete the fabric. I was quite enticed by this. However, seeing as to how I live in a little, tiny apartment and that I can't even sew the things I have already planned to sew, I wisely decided against buying one. Not to mention, the kits ran from $65 on the lower end to $185. So, I plan to return next year with the goal of having sewed the things I planned to and with the time (ha ha) to make one of these kits.

I've imagined how wonderful it would be to make a big quilt to give to my mom and one to my grandma too.

Anyway, I thought the floor was nicely set up. It remained neat during the 2 hours I was there. The bathrooms at the front entrance were messy and ran out of both toilet papers and towels. However, the toilets in the backend were very clean and unoccupied. It did not get crowded b/w 10-12pm. There was one area providing sandwiches for $7.50. I brought water There was lots of fabric for quilters and nothing that stood out for me. The one thing I drooled over was www.creativefeet.com. But I just could not afford to buy those 3 feet and that is also one of the things I plan to get next year. It will give me a year to save up for it.

In conclusion, unless you're a quilter or you need little random sewing tools, you're not going to get much out of this besides an occular enjoyment. These are the random things I bought. 2 marking items, a really cool magnetic pin picker upper/holder, a purple thang and that little wooden thing sorta takes the place of an iron for us lazy people, who don't like to get up in the middle of sewing to press seams with the iron.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Dress is cut out.

So I picked up about 12 Butterick patterns at the $1.99 sale at Joann's this past week. This is one of them. I bought the fabric too for a total of about $27 for the dress including the pattern, but not including the $4.99 for a 4 pack of stretch needles. It took me 2 evenings to cut it out. This is made from Jersey and it was difficult for me to cut b/c it kept sliding around all over the table. Also, I haven't figured out an easy way to cut out a pattern. Maybe there isn't one. I bought these little weights b/c I thought, "Hey great! I don't have to pin." But that's not working out. I can't ever get close enough to the edge of the pattern, so I pretty much end up pinning anyway. The weights are useful from keeping the fabric from falling off the table as I'm cutting away or even when I'm pinning.

I'm not going to have time to get started on this until this weekend probably. In addition, I still have to finish the girls pirate costumes, start mine and make Kevin's pirate vest. I'm hoping to pick up a white shirt at Goodwill b/c I really don't want to make it now. The thought of trying to fit 4 1/2 yards of fabric into 1 little shirt is scaring me off.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Halloween Dress 2007

I have made Omari a Halloween dress every year since she was 3. I made this one from Simplicity 3902. The print is a lot of different candies and the words Trick or Treat and Halloween. It came out looking costume-like, which was something I had not foreseen. It's fine since it is for the month of October and unlikely to be worn thereafter. Omari loves it and she says she looks like a princess witch. You might think it's a waste of time, to make something that will likely only be worn twice. But, this gets handed down to Niece #1, who then gives it to Niece #2, who then gives it back to Naiobi. Actually, this hasn't happened with any of the dresses, but I already got back the Halloween dress I made for Niece #2 last year. That means I don't have to make one for Naiobi this year.

2003, First Halloween Dress


Naiobi was only 1 month old and I bought her a "My First Halloween" sleeper.


Omari's Dress

Naiobi's Pants with purchased Target tee.


Reyna's Dress, this is the one Naiobi gets to wear this year.

Naiobi's and Omari's t-shirt dresses. Can you tell the the skirts were made out of past Halloween Fabric? I actually cut the 2005 dress apart and used that skirt for this dress.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Costume progress and sad news.

I had my weekend evenings all planned out. Friday I made the girls pirate dresses and tutus, and sashes. They tried them on Saturday morning. Naiobi's was perfect, but Omari's was too tight in the armpits. Need to fix that. They loved the tutus and the sash. But I didn't like how the sash kept bunching up. I want to make the costume as worry free a possible for them to put on and off by themselves.

On Saturday, after a birthday party I came home and attached the sash to the corset, so I kind of hangs like a little overskirt. I liked this much better. I also added red tulle to the top of the corset.

On Sunday, I was going to fix Omari's dress and add the eyelets to the corsets so that you string them. I'm thinking maybe I should use black elastic instead. We'll see. On Sunday I went to Joann's. I was there to buy 4 1/2 yards of fabric for Kevin's pirate shirt. I had a 50% of coupon, very helpful for that much fabric. I was also buying the eyelets for the corsets.

These pictures are in sequence, Dress, then add tutu, then add corset. I couldn't figureout a way to add the tutu to the skirt at the same time. I don't like how the black part of the tutu just fades into the black underskirt. Maybe I should have made the whole dress white.

Anyway, nothing got done on Sunday b/c I got a horrible call from my mom while I was shopping at Joanns. Her boyfriend/best friend of 12 years died Saturday of a heart attack. She didn't find out until Sunday afternoon. He was supposed to pick her up from work on Saturday and he never showed up. A friend drove her to his house and she waited outside for him and eventually walked home. On Sunday she went to work and kept calling him. A friend finally told her to call the police. She did. And the return call made her fall to the floor.

She is devastated. To top it off, she doesn't know much about his family. They all live out of state and she never met them. She doesn't know if they even know about her. She thinks they will be taking his body home to New Orleans. She doesn't know how or if she will be received. I'm hoping that all his funeral arrangement information gets to her. She did meet his daughter at the morgue and got her number. Interestingly enough, I know his sister. She works for the same agency as I do. I hope I can get in touch with her tomorrow and maybe I can get funeral info from her. My mom was unable to

It was difficult talking to my mom yesterday. I couldn't help but cry. I feel so sad for her. This was her BEST FRIEND! They did everything together and for each other. I can't imagine that kind of loss. I don't want to imagine. She says she has no reason to be in Texas anymore and she says she will try and settle her affairs quickly so she can move. She has a few choices. I wonder what she will decide.

I'm so sad that she's alone. I wish I could be with her and drive with her to New Orleans as she plans to do.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Old Friends

I had lunch with a friend from college today. (Hi Hortensia!) I hadn't seen her in about 5 years and since then she's added 2 more kids to her family. She looks almost exactly the same and she said the same of me. It's nice to hear even when I don't find it true myself. It's so nice to catch up with old friends and find that a connection remains. I was fortunate to also meet up with another friend last month that I hadn't talked to in about 8 years. It gives me a sense of peace to know that they are well in the universe.

I have kept close relationships with friends that I've had since elementary school (Alva and Elena), middle school (Suzie, my forever pen pal), high school (Monique, Carol, the twins Monica and Irene, and Gloria), college (Michele and Antionette), grad school (Maria) and work (Goretti and another Maria). I'm not talking about contact here and there. These are true to my heart, brutally honest, always there for each other, type of friends. They are my family. Many people are surprised that my group of Lincoln Heights friends (that's elementary plus high school) and I have been friends for so long.

So to my dear, dear friends, thanks
for being in my life
for loving me unconditionally,
for helping me move all the times that I had to,
for lending me your cars when I needed them,
for making room for me in your beds when I had no home,
for pulling back my hair when I had too much too drink and had to purge it,
for giving me fashion advice,
for lending me money,
for the LONG emails,
for making me laugh,
for listening,
for your 2 cents,
for accepting that sometimes I'm too honest and for being honest in return,
for loving my children
for coming to my little, unfabulous parties
for making me laugh (you guys are too funny!)
and for just being you.

You guys are such a varied group of people but all of you are fun! I love you girls!