As of late…

My new machine.

I have been using my new-fangled sewing machine to do embroidery over the last three months. It is fun and nerve wrecking all at the same time. First, the world of machine embroidery is a mighty vast world full of lots of teddy bears holding balloons and SUPER cheezy seasonal crap that I would never use in a million years. For these reasons and all the Disney characters the came programmed into my machine I was really kinda scared of the whole concept. BUT it is the embroidery that makes the machine a $3500.00 sewing machine so I push through my issues and am now embroidering!! For starters I made my mother this box for Christmas:

A good learning project

I know monogramming is not necessarily her thing but I needed something to design and I know my mom has wanted to decorate cigar boxes for a long time so I just figure it is both inspiring and utilizable (she is a total organizer, genes I didn’t get).
Right after Christmas I actually broke the machine… It just stopped embroidering beautifully would not hold tension. I am a bull in a china shop, if it is delicate and precise I will mess it up. I realize I cannot just open her up and see what is going on like my other machines (Serge, and Bertha), I have to take it in to the shop. THANK GOD there was a year long warranty, because it is $200 dollars just to have them look at this machine.
Now I am back on the road to embroidery… My husband found the mother load of embroidery patterns on the torrents and I am overwhelmed with embroidery files (hence my lack of blogging). And if that is not enough I need a whole other wing to my studio just to house the stabilizers and thread needed for this whole operation. SHEESH!! Well out of all that whirlwind I introduced a line of Ring Bearer pillows in my ETSY shop. Personalized monograms and custom patches coming soon!!
Here are some other Christmas presents I churned out for friends and family:

Personalized pot holders! Yes- I am geeking out!!

Damn… I’m addicted to the NYT art and design page

two things I love about summer!!

two things I love about summer!!

So I am now technically on vacation.   Sadly, we are not going anywhere (the bus is broken:() but I have the time off.  I have two costumes and some private lessons to do over the next two weeks. 

SO yesterday we biked the green river trail for 20 miles.  Its a pretty good trail, you can feel like you are not in a densely populated urban area.  AND you are not just riding next to a road, it is just the bike path and river. 

I have also been addicted to the Art and Design page of the New York Times.  So much creativity out there.  I have this rather large scale art idea that I have been marinating in over the last couple of months.  It is kind of a cross -collage of a number of the arts I like to do- so stay tuned.

And finally…. dresses, I have been making dresses, and wearing dresses and making more dresses, and putting dresses on ETSY, and wearing more dresses… It has been a really deep reflection on comfort vs. design philosophy!  I usually fancy myself such a tomboy, but lately dresses are my comfort chose.

My own little piece of the Web

O. K. so roughly one year ago I started doing some writing, blogging is the catch phrase… on my Myspace page.  It was easy and convenient and I just wanted to try it out… you know, see if it was for me.  Well, I did it for one whole year.  Now, I think that it is time to put this blog thingy in to kindergarten (so to speak).  I have many more friends and family that are not myspace users then are and I would like them to have access. Also, I have been slowly trying to build myself a web site- HippyLongStockings.com (4-5 years and counting).  At some point I would like to use WordPress on my site so I figured that this was a good start.  I am not a website builder by trade but I have an AWESOME tech support division called my husband.  He builds big, beautiful websites for fancy, smancy companies.  Check it out at Amped Multimedia.  I am basically an HTML girl… if you can even call me that.  I built a website for my work- www.nancyssewingbasket.com.  I am working on the 2.0 version right now.  That is all that is in my portfolio…currently.

 

So what am I by trade, you ask.  Well…. Let’s see… I am always a work in progress but aren’t we all.  I have been in the textile business for eight-ish years and yes that means I work in a fabric store.  It is NOT just a fabric store but a REAL dressmakers shop, something that is very hard to find these days so you may not even understand what I am talking about (Joann’s is not one).  I love this job.  Everyday I come home and want to sew, unlike when I worked in manufacturing where you sew the same boring shi-stuff all day long and don’t even want to look at a sewing machine when you get home.

 

I am a self-declared fabric snob and feverishly believe that everyone should be.  And although I understand the value of $37 dollar a yard Liberty of London cotton, I can’t always afford it.  Good fabric is like good champagne, it is smooth, makes you feel warm and fuzzy when working with it, and is totally addictive.  Cheap fabric is like cheap champagne, it just gives you a big fat headache.

 

So what exactly do I make with fabric? Well I hope to keep a running log here as to what I do on a regular basis.   If you want to see what I have done over the year check out my MySpace blog or go to my flickr Photstream for just some picture of what I like to do.