Thursday, November 29, 2012

Finish What You Start in 2012... your flickr motivation to GET IT DONE!


Here's the thing.... It's December. Well... almost... If you are in the craft world... It's December.

We've all had those projects laying around that we've all started at some point this year and they are still sitting TO BE DONE.

Maybe it's mending, maybe it's a gift for someone, maybe it's a pattern that's been cut and should be sewn, maybe it's not sewing related, but you've got all the craft supplies to make it, and you just need to DO IT!  Maybe it's a Pinterest pin that you've been wanting to make... you get the idea...

I'm proposing some Flickr Motivation Fun for you guys, but MOSTLY myself, to help us all cross those things off the list in 2012!

I created a Flickr Group called FINISH WHAT YOU START IN 2012 (I know... clever title... you know you want to join it just because of that title) and it's open to anyone and anything craft/hand-made related that you guys want to enter to it! Anything that you want to take pride in that you've completed in 2012... not necessarily upload every and all photos from here back to January, but those things that you are currently working on to GET DONE!

Like take this vest for instance that I made for Cai.
Not my favorite. I mean, he's my favorite... just not really the vest.

I actually cut this baby out during KCWC and never got around to sewing it, but I've been trying to motivate myself across the board to stop wasting time here and there and just GET THINGS DONE! After I got things cut out, I just sort of hated this project. In my head, I just sort of didn't know what I had been thinking. Argyle knit seemed so cool on the bolt, but I felt like I'd sort of "wasted" it using the Oliver + S Sailboat top turned vest. Something about it just seemed "not right" in my design opinion. Finally, I just decided to spend the 10 minutes it would take me to just sew it together, so that's what I did.
I texted a picture of it to Caila saying how mad these buttons made me, and how I didn't think I was going to post it on the blog. She sort of convinced me otherwise... maybe it wasn't as bad as I thought. Maybe I should sleep on it and I would like it better in the morning? So I did.

And she was right... it's MUCH cuter on such a cute little boy the next day! I love my blog BFF... I claim Caila as my blog BFF, people... sorry... she's mine! She's too cool for school and you know it.

Even though, it doesn't make me feel as accomplished as say... the father/son matching shirts. The point is that I got it done and made and that's that! Done in 2012!

So, here's where you come in.... Stop procrastinating... Get your stuff done... and add it to the new FINISH WHAT YOU START in 2012 flickr group!

I'll show off you're amazing-ness right here throughout the month, and we'll all cheer each other on that we've finished those random projects IN 2012!

I'll have the blog button up shortly on both this post AND my side-bar (It's up!!!), and whoever wants to add it to their side-bar or blog about it will get a virtual hug from moi!!! I love you people... let's do it!


Oh, and P.S. - Whoever is the first one to add their craft item to the flickr group will get a fabric necklace sort of like this one made by me.... I enjoy bribery, I mean... giving gifts!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Knocking it off at Elegance & Elephants: Gap Polo

HI, everyone! I'm over at Elegance & Elephants today with my Gap Embroidered Rugby Polo Knock-off! I have not been on the computer all day and am super lame-o at putting up a sister post today, but I'm so grateful to be on Heidi's blog!!! I've loved it for awhile! She makes such unique things... AND... She is the sweetest ever! I certainly was lifting her and her daughter up recently in prayer! I'm very thankful for sweet blog friends! Please come check out the comparison!


Sunday, November 25, 2012

Girl Charlee Chevron Fabric Winner!

 I am happy to announce that the winner of the Girl Charlee Black and White Chevron Knit Fabric is...

Margaret from Barefoot Sewing! Congrats! You just won 2 yards of this awesome Chevron Knit! I know you're daughters will be super happy! You can definitely make them some cute Banksia's now!


Keep in mind that Girl Charlee carries a wide selection of knit chevrons among so many others and have really great prices!
Thanks, Heather for a GREAT giveaway! Don't forget to use the discount code SESSATEN for 10% off your Girl Charlee order!

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Father & Son Matching Flannel Shirts

I've been sewing this whole last week like crazy (around Thanksgiving family time, of course). We had our family Christmas photo shoot with my good friend, JeeJee, today, and I had a vision (and a deadline!).


A matchy matchy vision for my two boys.
I cannot wait to see the photos from our shoot! In the meantime, I took some of my own for the blog, so I could show you how cute these turned out! Ah, I'm in love!
It may surprise you, but this growing sewing talent that God has given me shocks me, EVERY time. I have a moment where I have completely finished and it's like I come out of a sewing " creative daze" and see what I have made and I really think.... I cannot believe I just made that!!! 
 Maybe God felt that way, too, after he finally rested on the 7th day...maybe he just said, Goodness... this is so cool! Look at this world I've made! Haha!
 All along my sewing journey, I have felt like I will "finally be REAL seamstress, when I can xyz".

Sewing a men's button down was on that "xyz" list. It just feels like I've reached a sewing milestone... especially sewing two very different versions...  is that crazy?

No, I think not, because sewing these two items was very time consuming and I utilized a lot of sewing skills that amaze me that I know! I don't want that to sound cocky, but as my husband says, "You need to just face it. You are talented with this stuff." Okay, honey, I'm trying to see it that way! I'll try to stop beating myself up when there are flaws! Perfectionism... get out of the way!
Even though these are very similar due to my fabric choice, they are actually very different in style and put together in two completely different ways. It was really neat to sew them so closely together and realize the two very different ways you can "build" a shirt.

The Colette Negroni does not have a button placket down the front, but has inside yokes that make for a smooth front finish.

I've personally decided that I actually like the more traditional style of the Oliver + S Sketchbook button placket.
And I really like the box pleat in the back of the Sketchbook pattern vs. two little pleats on the negroni. I may do the box pleat on a shirt another time for Hart.
On both shirts, I did the yokes & pockets on the bias.


However, the Negroni had a lot of things I liked. I learned how to sew both curved felled seams and flat felled seams. I felt like the way the Negroni was put together made a lot of sense to me. I liked how I sewed on the cuffs and how it seemed to avoid needing to hand sew anything vs. the Oliver + S shirt which called for hand sewing the collar in place. I actually used the felled seam technique when sewing the Oliver + S shirt, so both of my shirts are beautiful on the inside and out. I didn't take photos of them (because my boys are wearing them today!), but trust me. It just makes me giddy to see them pretty inside, too.
The only things my perfectionism would say "messed up" were the cuffs on Cai's shirt and curving the pockets on both shirts. I sewed the button holes a little too far in and it makes the shirt kind of tight to button. We just rolled them back fo a "relaxed" look, so I don't mind. Next time, I know.

Other details you might want to know:
-I used Target flannel sheets for my fabric. They are on the end caps, so as you walk by... take note! haha! I loved how thick the flannel was vs. anything I have found in craft stores just seemed so light and airy and not warm and cozy. They were $25.99 for a set of sheets. It gave me so much fabric to make these shirts and I still have a lot left to make other things like PJs or flannel muslins!!! I hope to pick more up for more items as they get marked further down to clearance! I wonder if anyone will ever walk up to my husband and say, "Hey... I have sheets that look like that!" ha!
-Hart's shirt is an XL and Cai's is a 3T.
-I made the pockets on the sketchbook curve like those to match the negroni.
-The chocolate 1/2'' buttons are from Hancock Fabrics, which were my only Black Friday shopping and I got all of them for under $2! Yay!
-Making my own shirt made me realize how NICE they come out compared to cheap-o clothing places like Wal-Mart or Target. Really, the quality of this shirt is similar to a higher end line of shirts that you'd pay some good money for. Definitely worth making yourself IF you ever have time! haha!

With all that, the main reason why I did this was because our little guy looks up to his amazing father with so much love and admiration. Hart is such an amazing example of our Heavenly Father and his love for us. I just love seeing it and I wanted to remember it forever in photos. Making this shirt for my husband spoke to his "love language" and he was so happy! I need to sew for him more often!

I hope you guys enjoyed seeing how fun these came out! I hope to share our finished Christmas photos and my outfit (which I did not make, sorry) to come!

Merry Christmas y'all! 


Friday, November 23, 2012

Christmas Time is here!

Might I interest you in some Christmas sewing from Designs By Sessa? 

How about some super easy and fast pjs for Christmas morning? 


Or how about some re-usable gift tags or bag tags for the cousins?

Hooded Towels are always in style...


As well as some cute pocket accessories for that toddler in your life that needs to stay busy.

You really can't go wrong with giving some ruffle neck cowls! These are a hit across the board!

And lastly, how about a colorful felt bib necklace!? Everyone loves some hand-made lovin'.
All FREE tutorials, because I love you. Merry Christmas!!!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Ginorm-O pattern!

I'm going to feel like a real seamstress when I finish the Colette Negroni for Hart!
Felled seams (which at this point... I still have no clue what that means), button plackets, collars, and sleeve plackets, pleats. I am making a MEN'S shirt!!! WOW! When I opened this pattern and skimmed the pages, I kind of wanted to go run and hide!

No, I really am excited to learn new things. The reason I would spend $12 on this pattern is because I have complete faith that they will help me through the stuff I don't know, and then I will feel super accomplished!

Last night I printed off all 73 pages!!!! And taped the big sheet all together... It was quite a task! please remind me next time I sew for Hart to just spend $4 more and get the pattern booklet!
Literally.... HUGE! The pattern was seriously as big as me! I'm 5'7!

My tip for putting together a pattern like this is to not cut anything, but just fold your piece of paper on two sides and tape it all together, overlapping it as you go. The first time I did a printed pattern, I cut out the entire thing and then realized I could just fold 2 sides of the paper, not cut out the whole thing. It goes much faster! :) 

Hope you got a good little laugh out of me laying on that pattern! I'm having fun, here! Now, here's to praying that I can actually do a great job sewing up this pattern! Any tips from those of you that have made this pattern!?

I'm Changing into a Flybaby!

Okay, I know that's a bizarre title... stay with me. Do you remember this post where I just had to get honest with you? If you've been around this blog any length of time, you will quickly find out I care way more about how adorable your (or my) new sewing project is. I care about your heart. Your place before Jesus and how I'm reflecting who God is on this blog.

The truth is that I've been wanting to change my everyday habits very badly.

The "pit" areas, as I'd like to refer to them for me are:

-Getting up early
-Reading my Bible
-Crap Mornings where I let my kid watch too much tv
-Running my house well
-Keeping things cleaned and organized
-Meal planning, blah-dee-blah-blah

Sound familiar?

Yes. We all struggle with these things. Especially as tired stay at home moms where there is no end to our days.

~~~
Go back to a couple of weeks ago with me. My house was a complete mess (chaos better describes it). All I've been wanting was time to myself. Time to do whatever I please.

That's not bad, but it's been a bad cycle for me where that's all I've been seeking out, continually. I felt like each and every day was a blur. Wake up late. Send husband out the door, some days without a lunch. Let Cai watch TV while I read blogs/waste time on the computer to "wake up". Eat breakfast late. Unsure about what to do in the morning with Cai. Realize I've put Cai down for an afternoon nap and I'm sill in my pajamas. I blink and it's dinner time and I don't know what's for dinner, and on an on. Same thing. Every day.

Add on top of that, pretty much each and every time I felt like I needed a break, I was sitting down at my computer. Over and over again, any short chance I got, trying to "take a break."

I was living at my lowest. Doing the minimal. Just barely enough to pass through each day and wondering how I was supposed to accomplish "all this".

A couple weeks ago, I was just plain bored with my mommy role and severely overwhelmed with my tasks at hand. I was so tired of doing the same crap over and over. One particular day, all I felt that I had to do was "buy toilet paper and take a book to the library."

It just felt so mundane. I'd lost sight of what was important.

The good thing about living in a tunnel, dark and black...
Is that it can be amazing when you come out the other side!

God's word never comes back void. We should read it, when it is hard.

My first babystep, personally has been to read my Bible more, so that I can love God more. I can't say I do it daily, but SheReadsTruth helps me so much to stay consistent. I've been in Colossians this month in my reading plan. These truths have been transforming me!

"Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly,...with thankfulness in your hearts" Colossians 3:16
"And whatever you do, in word, or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him." col. v.17 

"Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ." Col. 3:23

And from Proverbs 31. (I encourage you to read this whole chapter to see this wise woman's ways!)

"She looks well to the ways of her household and does NOT eat the bread of idleness." v.27

Whoa!!!! Stop right there. While I definitely know God pours out his grace on me and I have amazing freedom in that, I also know that I have some responsibilities as a Christian that go further than how I've allowed myself to live in my flesh. Something had to be done. I needed more change.

(Insert Husband taking me to lunch on my lowest day and telling me about how he happened to have seen one friend we know mention FlyLady on her Facebook. Maybe if I had someone to encourage me daily to get some things done around the house, then I would feel more excited to do them naturally). It sounded like a better plan than how I'd been operating, maybe it was worth a try.

So I checked out this website and this wonderful older woman encouraging other woman, especially stay at home moms living in Chaos to slowly change their ways at home for the better by establishing baby step routines each day. I was hooked! I love following plans. I love accountability. I love a clean house. And I love changing!!!

I've become a Flybaby

Two things have radically changed me and my household already.

1)Shine my sink every day (Going on 8 days strong now! Look at that clean, happy, smiling sink!)
  • Each day, after shining my sink, I've been keeping it clean. I don't go to bed with dishes in my sink. Every day, I have made this a priority. It has truly made the biggest difference in my home. It's a place that I've taken pride in... MY KITCHEN... COME SEE! 
2)Get dressed DAILY to shoes.
  • Somewhere along the way I stopped getting dressed and lived in pjs during the day. I treated every day like Saturday, a lazy day. If and when I got dressed it was mainly in work out clothes and a t-shirt. For the last week, I've changed that. I've gotten up, not necessarily early yet, but I've gotten up, and gotten dressed in normal clothes. I've put on some earrings, put on my make-up, and fixed my hair somewhat each day. It's amazing how much your day transforms when you actually get dressed (TO SHOES!) It's true... I even put shoes on. In my house! The first 3 days I did SO much more than before, that I was HURTING by the time I got back in bed that night, because wearing shoes made me do so much more around the house. No lie. You should try it.
You really have to check this website out if you struggle with managing your home and keeping up with things! I've been taking it slow, like she says, and it's been exactly what I've needed.

I have never been so proud of my kitchen EVER!

 Even my husband is following our new "sink rules" and we love to yell "RULE BREAKER!" at each other if we "mess up".
I seriously spent 4 hours cleaning my kitchen & sink the first time. That's how terrible it had become. When I was cleaning it, I cleaned everything in my kitchen, too. It's my favorite place to be in my home right now!
And as an exciting new reward, I picked out these beautiful kitchen rugs & spongy mat for my feet when I have to wash dishes!

Too often, I've seen mommy bloggers pour themselves into their blogs, but then admit how off track they've become in their own homes and with their families. I never want that to happen to me.

My family is my top priority outside of Christ. I want to take care of them well. Add on top of that that God shows us in his word an awesome godly woman that doesn't lazy herself through each day, but looks well to the ways of her home, and I've realized that I don't want to live any other way.

As a sewist, I do put my home on hold at times so that I can have time to sew, but what I'm now realizing is that if I build into my day certain daily habits (which FlyLady is helping me form), then I actually have MORE time to get the fun things done. If I keep up with the small things each day, then there are huge chunks of time where I can devote to my growing sewing passion. And by doing these small things each day, I'm actually loving my family MORE and I'm putting them first.

While I love the honesty of other mom bloggers that reveal that their homes are complete wrecks, I actually don't want mine to be like that.  I want the best of both worlds. I want to sew and have time for that and I want to have a clean, well maintained house. I want to look put together each day. I want to be efficient. And most of all, I want to make time for Jesus.

Maybe I lost you much earlier in this post, but I just wanted to share these accomplishments with you, because sometimes seeing others progress, can help push us into the right gears, too. If you want me to pray for you in these areas, too, please leave me a comment and I will add you to a list to pray for you daily! Let's hold each other accountable!

Become a FlyBaby with me!!! But let God pour his grace upon you when you realize where you are at!

Love in Christ,
Vanessa 

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Japanese Fabric

I love Japanese Fabric, don't you? I don't love how costly it is here in America. One day, as I was wishing I had some NaniIro Flannel, my mind thought... if only I could go get some from Japan! Then, wham, bam, it hit me... We have friends in Japan! Maybe they could get me some fabric, particulary flannel, because ours here is so blah! I messaged our friend Kazuki and asked him if he would go look for me and see if they had any. It was a huge favor to ask. He was so kind and just sent me a picture of the fabrics he picked up for me...
I seriously went crazy when I saw them! Aren't they SO cool!? Echino and NaniIro straight from Japan, for me. I just can't believe how cool those deer with glasses are! It will be Christmas as soon as they arrive!

The biggest risk was having our "guy friend" pick out fabric, but he did an amazing job! Wouldn't you say?

Now, here's to hoping after the cost in Japan + shipping, I still didn't break the bank too too much! Ha!

Project Run & Play Guest Post: November Flickr Friends

Hi everyone! Are you guys getting ready for Thanksgiving dinner!? Today, I'm back over on one of my favorite blogs, Project Run & Play! Definitely full of thanks to be with Liz and Elizabeth!

I'm guest posting about how to turn a Men's Henley into a Boy Henley! Come check it out (along with my other PR&P outfits for this season!

See you there!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Chevron Possibilities - Giveaway Reminder

I just keep thinking about all the awesome black and white chevron items you could make with your 2 yards free from Girl Charlee!

A really cute, comfy throw blanket.

Cute throw pillows for your couch. 

A glasses case by Seams Sew Wright

Clothes
source
You could do covered button earrings... I'm wanting some of these right now! 

Oh, goodness, the possibilities are endless! You should definitely enter the Girl Charlee Chevron giveaway or enter SESSATEN at checkout to receive 10% off your fabric purchase order!

Have a happy week!