If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Happy Birthday, Harris!

It is hard to believe this little man is already 2!
We feel blessed each time we interact with him.  He has such a way about him.  He won our hearts from the beginning and just keeps refreshing that love over and over again.  I don't know anybody who doesn't feel happier after spending a bit of time with this guy!
Happy Birthday, Harris!

Sunday, September 27, 2015

I've had a leisurely morning.  My sweet hubby slipped out of the house early this morning to take care of his livestock and took a little trip to a fast food place for bacon/egg/biscuits and gravy/biscuits and left me snoring snoozing.  So, we enjoyed our luxurious take-out breakfast before he went in and joined Terry Bradshaw and the guys to get the update on football whild I sat sipping coffee and taking virtual fall home tours.  I saw the links on a couple of my favorite home styling blogs this week for the Blogger Stylin' Home Tours but I saved the tours for when I had time to take them in, do some pinning, and thoroughly enjoy.  

Oh, the ideas I gathered!  First off, I've decided that my recent obsession with stripes has to continue because I saw lots of black and white stripes in those tours.  I love Jennifer's striped pots and noticed she also has a striped rug.  Aniko showed off a striped throw.  Shannon has striped pillows and books and I picked up on another thing that I am feeling a yearning for - cheetah print pillow covers.  Jenna convinced me that my idea of going to the dollar store to get some pumpkins for painting, fabric covering, etc. might need to become a reality and take place sooner rather than later.  

I realized that I have grown to appreciate the color green a bit more since I've married a man who has a house with a green roof and shutters and a green barn.  So, Emily at Eleven Gables inspired me with the color of the door to her mud room.  I also swooned over her transferware.  

I fell in love with Mallory's outdoor space decorating.  Fell.  In.  Love.  The fact that my love of sunflowers is shared was obvious in several of the tours but no more beautiful than the bundle showcased by Lucy.  

Monday, September 21, 2015

Perking things up

I decided to use a bit of orange as I ease into fall this year.  Since I had that on my doors, I decided to bring it indoors as well.
I love the orange with the green.

Saturday, when I was finished making a couple of striped pillow covers, I used another remnant of fabric to craft some pillow covers for my sofa pillows.

I had used this orange swirl fabric to create some table runners a couple of years ago.  So, I pulled out a strip that was exactly twenty-three inches wide.  It was the perfect size to make one side of the covers for my sofa pillows.

I think the orange was just the ticket for perking up the sofa and injecting a bit of fall color into the den.

For the other side of the pillow cover, I went to my old stand-by - blue.  Every single room in my house has a bit of blue in it.  So, backing these pillow covers with blue seemed to be a natural way to turn.  I had a cotton fabric that was in two pieces.  It was left from some project long, long years ago.  So, I tore the two pieces into strips that would form an envelope back for the orange swirl fabric.  I folded the edge under a half-inch.  Then, I folded it down a couple of inches to form a hem for the center, envelope edge and stitched.  Then, I pinned the back to the orange swirled front - right sides together and stitched them up.  I turned them right side out and pressed them.  Then, I stitched a knife edge about a quarter-inch from the outside edge of the cover.
Thinking I might want to use these covers on through the fall, or at some other time of the year, I decided to change these covers up aa bit and add a little tie to the back so that it would look more finished and would be cute facing out alongside my other blue pillow covers.  I just added a couple of ties to the center and just made a knot with them.
Do you recognize what the ties are crafted from?  Yep, it is an upcycle.  I had an old pair of Mike's jeans that I use for patching overalls.  So, I simply trimmed the double-stitched seam off one of the legs and cut it into four pieces.  I stitched two of the pieces to the back flaps and tied them into knots.

A couple of fresh looks and the only cost was a bit of my time.  I had all the materials here and they were left from other projects!

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Easing into Fall

It is September and my summer door decorations were looking tired and sad.  The blue burlap ribbon had faded terribly.  The tan burlap flags were looking a bit tired and they had darkened some.

I'm not quite ready to break out the pumpkins from last year and Halloween decorations as yet.  So, I decided to dig through my scrap pile to see what I could put together to tide us over.

I found a remnant of dark brown burlap.  It was 1/3 of a yard.  So, I decided I would try to get four small flags or banners out of it.

I dug through the fabric stash and found some orange chevron-striped fabric left from a baby blanket project, I think.  So, I drew a couple of leaf-shaped patterns and made some appliques for my burlap.

I decided that I needed something to coordinate with it.  So, I chose a solid orange piece of fabric.  Here is what I wound up with for my door decorations.
I'm using the same burlap ribbon with black swirls that I used last winter and all through the summer.  This time I topped those bows with orange gingham wired-edge ribbon.

My remnant and scraps made four door decorations with falling leaves and fall colors.
Here are the two French doors off the back porch.  I have another one there on the back at the laundry room entrance and another one for the basement entrance.

I guess I'm just easing my way into fall this year!

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Playing with Stripes

I've been playing with stripes today.

You may remember the last time I played with stripes.  I had stumbled upon a bargain one day when Bridgette, the granddaughters, and I were out junking.  I saw some red and ivory striped fabric and crafted a pillow cover which played with the stripes.
It was perfect for my project and I learned a lot about creating with the wide striped fabric.

That same day, I found some green and ivory striped linen.  At the time I had no idea what I would do with it but I bought a couple of yards for $10.

Today I cut the fabric into triangles with the stripes going across the Isosceles triangles.
I stitched two of the trianges together, matching up the stripes.  Then, I pressed the seam to one side.
At this point, I had a larger Isosceles triangle with the stripes mitering to form a ninety-degree angle.  (Who ever said all that math would never come in handy?)

I did the same thing with another couple of the triangles.  Then, I joined the two large Isosceles triangles together to make the top of my pillow.

Next, I cut a couple of strips to form the back of my pillow.  These two strips were the same width as my pillow and about 2/3 the length.  I turned one edge under a half-inch a couple of times and stitched the fold to form a hem.  Then, I overlaped the two hemmed edges in the center and lined up the cut edges to the edge of my pillow top.  I stitched the two strips to the pillow top with right sides together.  Then, I turned it right side out and pressed the edges and I had an envelope pillow cover.

This time, the stripes formed squares!  What fun it was to see the design take shape.  I've seen these covers offered for sale in catalogues and online like this one for $38:

Wow!  My little bargain remnants seem like a real deal when I consider that I also found this one online for $106

I also put together a couple of other pillows. this afternoon.  You can see them flanking the striped pillow here on the couch.  I will share more about them in another post.

One of the good things that came of my making this pillow with the mitered stripes forming a square is that there were also four other Isosceles triangles.
You can see the left-over triangles there on the right.  On these triangles, the stripes run up and down.
So, when I stitched them together, they formed a cross very much like the red pillow I made earilier this summer.
I topstitched the cross seams on this one to give it a bit of stability.  The center of it stretched a wee bit because it is on the bias, I guess.  Now, I've got to either buy me another Euro pillow form or make one for this pillow.

I'm pleased with my bargain striped fabric that I got when we were out junking!  Two pillows out of my $10 fabric - and a bonus!  I have a bit of it left over.

Maybe I should give some other designs a try.  Like this one:
I also like this one that is black stripe and navy stripe:
This one is a bit different, too:
It has been fun playing with these stripes.  It kind of makes me wish I had bought more of that green striped bargain fabric.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Holding It Just Right

The other day I posted a photo of Bryan and Jessica moving the oven into their new digs.

As I was revising and editing, I took a little closer look and I wonder if you noticed this, too.
That intensity.  That concentration.  That determination.
That you have to hold your mouth just right in order to get the job done right!

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Naturally Cool, Dude

For some guys, being a cool dude comes naturally.
A few days ago, I spent some time with our eldest grandson and he liked the way I just pushed my sunglasses atop my head when I went inside the house.
He told me to look because he had his just like mine.
I gave him a wink and he graced me with one in return.
I gave him a thumbs-up and he...
Well, he worked on it for a little bit...
And, then, finally...
...decided that he was pretty close to mastery.
After all, when you are a cool dude through and through, being cute is really probably close enough!

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

It's all in who you know...

Harris was showing me one of his picture books.
This page held a special attraction.
Look a little closer.
He informed me that was Mike driving that tractor.
Maybe it's all in who you know.

Monday, September 14, 2015

In the Name of Progress

A few days ago I posted about my Bryan, Jessica, and Harris's New Digs.

They've been working feverishly to try to complete their temporary living quarters and hit some bumps in the road along the way.  I've heard their tales of rain delays and electricians not showing up and materials being out of stock and a second electrician not showing up...

So, I recently went for a visit to see, first-hand, how things were going.

I saw this fellow climb up on the little step ladder.
After he got up there where he could reach well, he began to help his mother with her painting.
First, he reached over and got her attention.
You know, he just gave her ponytail a little wiggle.

So, he was helping out with the painting.

Next, I saw him do a little climbing up on the step ladder.
He was ready to help his mother with those hard-to-reach spots.

More help with the toughest part of the painting.

Next, he checked out all the working parts and connectors of the air compressor so that he could help his father with the nail gun.
He made sure that all the parts which might be needed were there and ready to go if necessary.
You know, just another pair of hands ready to go into action if needed.

So, he was helping out with the trim work.

He wrestled with the shop-vac to get it all straightened and right where it was needed to suck up sawdust and wire giblets.
He pulled it into place and got it all set and ready.
Then, put it to good use.

So, he is a great help at cleaning up as they go along.

Oh, I know that the little man's mom and dad probably have to do the heavy lifting.

I just don't get it.  With such a good worker and a sunny disposition to boot, it seems to me that Bryan and Jessica might have made up for lost time.
I mean really.  What's the hold-up guys?