Sunday, January 22, 2017

Thrift Store Sleeve Board Refinish

I love sewing tools and gadgets.  What's even better than having a plethora of them is finding them at a bargain price, as was the case when I found this sleeve board during a recent visit to a local The Salvation Army store.

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Paw Prints Across My Heart

I've heard it said that people come into our lives for a reason, a season or a lifetime.  I think this sentiment is not restricted to humans, but applies to any living being who enters our orbit.  I've presented my dog, Max, to you on several occasions through various blog posts, including this one I wrote last month about his unusual sleep behaviors.  At the time I published that post, I had absolutely no idea I'd be saying goodbye to my big guy just days before Christmas.

Thursday, December 15, 2016

How Aisha is Getting Her Sewjo Back

I've worked for a large telecommunications company for many years now, and I've found it common for most organizations and industries to adopt and use shorthand verbiage when its members communicate among themselves.  This practice absolutely extends to the sewing community - especially the online varieties - with "sewjo" being a common term used by many members.  For those of you who are novices, allow me to cobble together a definition.

The term has its origins in the word "mojo", which is formally defined as "magic power", and more commonly defined as having sex appeal or talent.  When used in the context of sewing, the hybrid term of "sewjo" is coined and generally refers to the creative energy used in sewing successive sewing projects in relatively short periods of time.

Since completing my Blog Like Crazy challenge, I've been suffering from a very anemic "sewjo" for a variety of reasons, and despite having several active WIPs (works in progress) , I just don't feel energized to work on any of them.  Desperate to not fall back into comfortable habits which lead to a void in sewing and blogging, I recognize the need for a quick sewing energy booster.  Motivated by the dumping of about 10 inches of snow we received earlier this week, I've decided to make winter accessories fashioned from a thrift store sweater.

Monday, December 12, 2016

Monday Musing: Online Fabric Shopping

What is your feeling about sewing in today's immediate-gratification world inundated with "cheap" clothing?  I've mentioned to my family and friends how I felt it's a dying art form, and the closing of brick-and-mortar stores like Hancock helps solidify this fear.  Having limited fabric sources in my area is a big deal for me, especially given my preference for feeling and handling fabric as part of my purchasing process.  There are many online fabric sources available, and I've honestly tried to shop them, but I can't seem to get past my need for tactile input.

So, I'm just curious to know if you purchase fabric online, and if so, what is your process in determining which fabrics you'll use for a given project?  Have you purchased something online that you've later found to be disappointing?  What was your recourse?  Is there an online resource you highly recommend, and why?

Please share...I'm really interested in hearing your thoughts.

Be blessed!


Sunday, December 4, 2016

Monday Musing: Upscaled McCall Pattern Videos

Did you know McCall Pattern Co. has a YouTube channel?  Have you checked it out lately?  They produced and published videos promoting the latest release of sewing patterns with "experts" talking about them and showing sample garments.

Now, the videos are made with models out on the street wearing the sewn garments with an upbeat musical track.  I find the new format far more engaging.

Here are links to the 2015 Fall and Winter season videos respectively.  Good job, McCall's!!

Be blessed!


"Nouveau Vivre" Knit Throw

Hello everyone and welcome back to my little corner of the internet.  After completing the Blog Like Crazy challenge in November, I took a couple of days to relax and think of the next project about which I wanted to write.  You may recall my sharing with you that I purchased several knit sweaters from The Salvation Army to make a knit throw to accompany the knit pillow cases in my Family Room.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

BLC Day 30: Yes! I Blogged Every Day This Month!

I am an admittedly negligent blogger, having gone significant periods of time between publishing new posts.  I've mentioned multiple times my desire to work towards a more consistent publishing schedule, and recognize doing so would require more discipline on my part.  So, when Faye Lewis shared she was participating in the Blog Like Crazy challenge again this year, I thought I'd take it on as well and commit to publishing a new post every day in November.

Oh, what a relief it is!!

I'm so glad to say I've met the challenge but don't mind telling you that it was sometimes a challenge doing on Day 19 when I was just exhausted from my work and travel schedules.  And yes, some posts were simply observations, but the commitment was to simply publish something new each day.

There's an established theory out there which states that a behavior has to be repeated for 21 consecutive days for it to become habit, while recent research conducted at the University College London indicates the habit-forming time threshold is actually 66 days.  Regardless which theory is correct, I hope to maintain a more consistent writing schedule after having met this challenge.  No, I won't say it will be daily; in fact, publishing a daily post really isn't my goal, but it will certainly be more often than every few months - or even years!

Thank you so much for coming here and checking out what I'm doing, my observations, and even my therapeutic venting on current events.  But most importantly, thank you for sharing your comments and words of encouragement.  You truly have no idea how much they've meant to me!

Be blessed!


Tuesday, November 29, 2016

BLC Day 29: ABQ Bad Quest

I love TV and one of my all-time favorite programs is Breaking Bad.  I was late coming into this TV drama but kept hearing buzz about it as it led into its second season.  Just before airing, AMC ran the first season episodes which allowed me to catch up...and I was hooked!

In case you're unfamiliar with the story line, it's about Walter White, a brilliant and award-winning scientist who settles for teaching chemistry at his local high school and supplementing his income working as a part-time cashier at a car wash.  After receiving a diagnosis of inoperable lunch cancer, he enlists Jesse Pinkman, a former student, and begins making crystal methamphetamine so his family will be financially secure after he dies.  The series was filmed in and around Albuquerque, New Mexico, so when I was asked to travel there earlier this year to facilitate training to a group of new hire employees, I had to take the opportunity to conduct a Breaking Bad Sight Seeing Tour a la Aisha.  (FYI...there are real BB tours conducted in ABQ and they're pretty pricey...IJS!)  Note - this post contains lots of images taken by me and letterboxed images from various BB episodes to serve as points of comparison.

My first stop was the Crossroads Motel - or as Hank called it, The Crystal Palace - which is where we first meet Wendy, a meth-addicted prostitute who assists Jesse on multiple occasions.  It's located on Central Ave SE at the I-25 overpass and judging from its area, it didn't seem nearly as seedy as it did on TV.  In fact, the Presbyterian Hospital is located directly across the street and the Hotel Parq Central, a 4-star hotel, is diagonally across, which you can see just behind the I-25 overpass in the image below.

Monday, November 28, 2016

BLC Day 28: Making of a Body Double

In film making terms, a body double is defined as a person who substitutes in a scene for another actor where the person's face is not shown.  In dressmaking terms, a body double is a dress form dummy with measurements and dimensional contours which mirror its owner for the purpose of constructing and fitting hand-sewn garments.  I've wanted a dress form model that was close to my own measurements and dimensions for a long time but the retail price tags always seemed prohibitive.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

BLC Day 27: Sweater Knit Throw

I recently shared with you details on the pillow cases I made from thrift store sweaters for my Family Room, and mentioned that I wanted to make patchwork throws to accompany the cases.  A while ago, while viewing images on Pinterest, I found this one of the patch-work sweater knit blanket Michelle made and posted on her blog, Yellow Suitcase Studio.  This served as my inspiration.