Boho Beach Bag Tutorial

Boho Beach Bag Tutorial

I love summer and going to the pool, beach and lake with the kids.  They splash around and I relax (sorta) and it is really nice.  But, I admit that sometimes I feel  a bit like a pack mule lugging all the towels and chairs and snacks etc.  Yes, the older ones carry their own towels and chairs.  Yes, my husband helps me when he comes along!  But, I am often the one doing the majority of the carrying.  THUS, a new beach BAG! This one was made using very lightweight fabrics and wide handles so I can just fold it up and put away without having it take up too much space.  Bonus!  I like making video tutorials nowadays :).  So watch below to see the movie magic and make yourself a new boho beach bag too…   You will need a yard for the exterior and almost a yard for the lining too.  I didn’t use any interfacing but you are welcome to add for a sturdier version.  Here are a few more...

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The Mountains are Calling Embroidery!

The Mountains are Calling Embroidery!

I am far from an embroidery expert but this time of year I feel the calling to make something slow.  It is so pleasant to create something stitch by stitch.  To me, that is the fun of embroidery!  It’s not a race but a commitment to crafting and I love that concept. We have made the journey out to Breckenridge, Colorado again!  This time just for one month.  In fact, we have been here almost 4 weeks already and now only have a few days left.  I will share some details of how we made this trip with 4 kids (and not being millionaires!) in a different post.  The mountains are absolutely beautiful, needless to say!   Before we came, I created this embroidery design and I thought I would share with you.  It is very easy!  Simply download the template, and either trace it onto your fabric or use a wash away stabilizer.  I recommend the stabilizer since you can print directly onto the paper and then fuse it to your fabric!  It is so easy and simple.  Here is a video to watch that explains this process very clearly. You can download the template by clicking here ~ mountains are calling I used chain stitch, satin stitch and back stitch.  I like this video that explains all 3 stitches if you need a refresher or to learn them for the first time! I ripped 1” strips of fabric and wrapped them around the outside hoop to give this a more finished look.  I simply ran a line of glue around the exterior hoop edge and wrapped away! I also embroidery this FREE mountain template I found on instructables.  It is so pretty!  I would recommend doing it when your skills are little more confident in your skills… I used the same 3 embroidery stitches as in my own design (can you tell those are my favorites??)!   Do you have some embroidery tips or template you like in particular?  Where is your favorite place to get patterns?  What are your thoughts for embroidery beginners??  I would love to know more from you crafty friends out there 🙂...

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Make Your Getaway Duffle with Long Handle and Front Pocket

Make Your Getaway Duffle with Long Handle and Front Pocket

If you follow along regularly, you may remember the version of the Make your Getaway Duffle that I made for Elsie back in August.  That version has become very popular and although the original version is a bit quicker, this one is not much more effort and might be fun for you to try if you want to change up the look of the classic Gingercake duffle pattern. I did not include the shoulder strap (like on the bag that Elsie has) in this tutorial since it turns out it wasn’t very useful.  I don’t want you adding something to your bag that doesn’t work well!  I might try to revisit that shoulder strap in the future since the idea is right- it just needs more padding or width or something! I have only tried the straps and pocket like this on the adult size version.  I imagine it would work fine on the child size if you experiment with the proportions a little.  These instructions are meant to be a supplement to your purchase of the Make Your Getaway Duffle!  They will not make sense unless you already own the pattern.   The handles in the original pattern are 16” x 6”.  To make these long handles, I simply used the WOF (width of fabric) since it is easiest and doesn’t waste fabric.  So, cut 2 strips that are 6” x WOF.  This usually is 42” to 44”.  I wouldn’t go less than 40”  length or you may have trouble putting the finished bag easily over your shoulder. Press in half lengthwise, right sides together (light gray center press line).  Unfold and then press the 2 long raw edges in toward that center fold, again wrong sides together.  Open back up, mark the center, and fuse the 3” x 20” interfacing to the wrong side centered.  See the drawing below. Press the sides back in toward the center, and then press the center again.  Top stitch down both long sides, 1/8” close to the edge. Follow instructions in the Make Your Getaway Duffle to complete the folded center of the handle.  Repeat with the other 6” by WOF piece. To attach the handle to the body piece, measure in from the left side 5” and mark with a pin or marking tool.  Then measure 5” from the right side toward the center and again mark.  Take one of the long handle and center it over the marks you just made.  Make sure the handle is not twisted.  See the drawing below for placement.  Pin the outside of the handle in place on the body- use a long ruler or similar method to make sure that you keep the handle straight.  Stop pinning where you can...

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Cross County in the Winter

Cross County in the Winter

We made it to Breckenridge!  Many things are the same as back in 1997 when I had my 20 months here as a 22 year old.  My friends that still live here tell me about all the change- I can see how much more development there is but it still feels like the same place to me.  Ah- the joys of being a tourist and only see the rosy picture! First, though, I have some fun photos to share of our trip across the country.   We drove 1549.21 miles in three days and it really wasn’t all that bad.  We drove the furthest, all the way to St. Louis, on the first day.  My husband booked a hotel in historic St Charles which was totally beautiful! This might be the first time we have ever fallen into such a wonderful location.  he said “I saw historic and right off the highway and I thought it might be nice!”  St Charles was one of the stops by Lewis and Clark and was a trading town for the explorers and pioneers.  It is right along the Missouri river.  It has been swallowed up by St. Louis but is still a beautiful little town in its own right.  Here is a pic early in the morning before we left.  It was 4 degrees! Below is another photo from that very chilly morning.  The Missouri river has frosty fog coming off it.  This must be a wonderful place to spend time when its warm!!The next day we traveled through Missouri, met old friends for lunch in Kansas City and then made our way to Salina, KS to stay the night.  The drive to Salina was very flat and exactly what you would think Kansas would look like.  We did see some beautiful preserved prairie along I-70.  In Salina we went to have burgers at the famous Cozy Inn (OK- I didn’t realize it was famous until I looked up someplace to eat on Trip Advisor).   Apparently this place has been on all sorts of burger joint shows, etc.  It was really fun and felt like a throw back in time.  This photo below is from Kansas Travel since it was dark and we couldn’t get one ourselves.  They serve small burgers which you order by the dozen!   The last day of our trip was spent driving through the rest of Kansas and into Colorado.   I could not get over the wind mills in Kansas and then also in Colorado.  They were so huge and I must have seen 1000 of them! When we finally got to Colorado, at first it seemed even flatter than Kansas.  We kept telling the kids to...

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Go WEST- young family of SIX

Go WEST- young family of SIX

As a young woman I traveled quite a bit- to France in high school, to Italy in College, and after college I spent a few wonderful years out west in Colorada and Montana.  Not to mention short trips to other places like Jamaica.  In Colorado,  I met my wonderful husband.  His work brought us to his hometown near Pittsburgh PA.   But now, we are finally going to make our way back west- at least temporarily! I love our life in Pennsylvania, but we have been hatching a plan for a few years that we are finally going to make come true.  Not one week back in Colorado, but EIGHT WEEKS!  With our 4 kids! If you are thinking this is crazy to travel cross country with 4 kids in the middle of winter, you might be right.  Here is the story of how this trip came to be… I love to travel!  But it is expensive and frankly I married a man who would rather stay home.  He will come along on trips and be totally pleasant, but he is happiest at home with the kids and me, our dog, and  going a job that he loves.  He just can’t get excited about going anywhere and I just can’t get excited to go if he is uninterested.  His ONE weakness is skiing. Alas, skiing is super expensive.  But we have managed to go locally as a family to some small resorts and have had a good time.  But to bring our kids out west where we met and where we were so happy, seemed unattainable financially.  A couple of years ago we priced it out and jokingly said to each other “We could get ski passes and live out there all winter for less than this!!”   This was an AH HA moment my friends!  We started to do a little research… So, with 2 years of careful planning behind it, this adventure is going into action this Saturday.  We are driving across the country to our favorite Ski resort in Colorado.  We have a cute in town condo booked for 2 months.  We have ski passes for the whole family.  We have jackets, pants, boots, helmets, mittens, goggles, warm socks, and long underwear already packed.  We have lots of new movies for the kids the watch on the TWENTY TWO hour car ride!  We have wonderful old friends to visit on the way… Do you know what I am most nervous about?  I have to withdrawl the kids from public school and homeschool since we will be gone so long.  No fear of weather or boredom or anything else!  I am so worried about pulling off this homeschooling thing.  My homeschooling friends...

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A New Duffle for the Traveler

A New Duffle for the Traveler

My oldest is traveling on her own to visit my parents this week.  She is going to get on the airplane here and my parents are going to pick her up in Atlanta a few hours later.  She is so excited and so nervous! A few years ago I made her a lovely yellow patchwork child size duffle.  But she is not a little girl anymore and she needed a piece of luggage that was more like the young lady she is going to become in the next few years.  THis is adult size version of the Make Your Getaway Duffle. I changed the strap length to be the WOF and loop down to the base piece.  I also added a pocket in between the straps.  The final addition is the shoulder strap to help with carrying through the airport.  The size is 4” x (again) WOF.  I used the triglide slides I had left over from all my Day Off Backpack making.  It is a really nice addition to the bag! A few week ago, I took girls to see Mat Kearney in a free concert down near the city.  It was their first concert and so much fun.  I used my favorite canvas drop cloth fabric for the lining and instead of just leavin it plain, I looked up lyrics to one of Mat’s songs and wrote them with a sharpie on the lining.  The result is a really fun lining that reminds us of a memorable night together. The last bit of fun is this fabric tassel around one of the handles.  My daughter says this is her favorite part! The fabric used here is organic cloud 9 fabric from Joanns for the main body fabric.  The straps and handles are Katarina Roccella for AGF from the indelible line.  The strap is art gallery solid, Honey. Let me know if you are interested in more detailed information on making the longer hand straps and the shoulder strap.  I think they make a nice addition!...

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Child Size Day Off Backpack on the 2 year old

Child Size Day Off Backpack on the 2 year old

My 2 year old does love the backpack.  Very much!  These photos are just taken with my iphone before she left the house with Daddy this morning.  Not too shabby for a phone, right?  And yes,  she chooses her own outfits, of course!  Nothing wrong with this wild mix of prints, right? We filled this one up nice and full so you could see how much it can hold, and how it looks on a little body.  It’s a nice size for her to grow into but not too huge for wearing now.  That is why it’s a good idea to take the time to make the adjustable straps although certainly not neccessary! What can you stuff in there you might ask?  Books, dolls, blankie, crayon folio and of course, a one eyed orange kitty that has to go everywhere! Here is another adorable version of the kids size backpack made by a lovely new sewing friend and tester, Amelia Masdin… It’s great to see the side and back, right?  I like how she used white snaps for the sides and the flap.  AND, she just used a piece of twill tape for the handing loop.  Also, a simple green duck cloth was used for the lining, base and contrast fabric.  Easy peasy.  Thank you Amelia!  You can get your Day off Backpack pattern (ON SALE)  right here.    ...

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Day Off Backpack Pattern in the SHOP!

Day Off Backpack Pattern in the SHOP!

I am seriously proud of this pattern.  I think it makes a fantastic, professional looking bag and it is fun and simple to sew.  YES.  I am patting my own back right now.  A couple weeks ago, I turned 40 and now I think I have the right to pat my own back.  No more modesty here!  haha. I have been carrying my backpack around now for a few weeks and it has passed the test!  I went to a baseball game, to a concert, and on a hike (not to mention a bunch of kid stuff).  It is comfortable, stylish and holds my STUFF.  Love it!  And my hand are free to wrangle all these kids 🙂 Here are the bag features…. You can get your pattern (on sale for $8 this week!) HERE.  Stay tuned this week for more photos and maybe even some pattern giveaways....

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Day Off Back Pack Version THREE: the MASH-UP!

Day Off Back Pack Version THREE:  the MASH-UP!

Are you ready to MASH??  I might like this version the best.  It is a combo of the adult size and kid size to create this fun and trendy boxy backpack.  It is the adult size, with the (included in the pattern) adult size boxy base, the adult zipper pocket, and the kid size flap and snapped sides.  I love it! Thank you so much to my lovely friend Moira for being my model this time.  You would never know that while we were taking these photos, the kids our kids were having an epic water battle and screamming their heads off in glee. Here is a close-up of one of my favorite details- this pieced pocket with a fun gingham lining. The pattern instructions will include some basic detail on how to do the mash-up.  But one of the things I like about this pattern is that it encourages you to mix it up yourself.  For example, you could do the drawstring closure and and magnetic snap flap on the kid size and make your own version of the Day Off Backpack Mash-Up! I am looking forward to finishing up the details of this pattern and making it for sale on Monday, July 13th!  I also have some great testers working hard and I am looking forward to sharing those with you too. If you like the MASH-UP, I would love for you to share on Facebook, pinterest or twitter to help me spread the word.  Thanks so much!    ...

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Day Off Backpack Version TWO: for the kids of course!

Day Off Backpack Version TWO:  for the kids of course!

Today is the second version of the my new sewing pattern- the Day Off Backpack!  It will go for sale on Monday, July 13th.  YAY! (pattern now avialble!  You can purchase here).I like the idea of having options for a pattern- being able to use the same basic principles, but then having extra feautures to change things up. I feel like clothing patterns do this all the time- but not so much bag and accessory patterns, right?  I feel like it opens your mind to how much you can create when sewing- like taking basic concepts and expanding them to make just what you want.  So cool.  That must be how sewing has kept me hooked all these years! This kids version of the Day Off Back Pack is smaller (of course!) and has a boxy bottom.  It also has a larger flap and button closure.  The last different feature are the snappy sides that give a quick closure and shape but can also be left un snapped for extra STUFF.The first time I gave this to my 2 year old to wear (these photos are on my 9 year old because she is A LOT easier to photo!) she stuffed it so full that we let the snaps out.  Then she kept it on ALL day and had a fit when I made her take it off for nap time.  Tomorrow is the final version of the Day Off Backpack!  Here is a hint- MASH UP!  That’s right.  A combo of the two to make a super cute 3rd version!  ...

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Day off Backpack coming soon! PART ONE

Day off Backpack coming soon! PART ONE

I have been working on this for quite a while and I am so excited to share it with you.  I am thinking it will be ready for purchase Monday, July 13th.  YAY!  (now avialable!  Purchase pattern here). Isn’t it fun?  And guess what?  This is just the first version!  I have 2 more versions to share tomorrow and Friday. This one is the adult size with a darted base.  It features a drawstring closure, simple zipper front pocket, magnetic snap flap, and adjustable straps. The next version is coming tomorrow! If you like the looks of this backpack, please pin, share on facebook, or tweet to help me spread the word.  Thank you!  ...

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Hello September!!

Hello September!!

Boy oh Boy.  I can't remember the last time I went a whole month without blogging.  It's true that regular blogging brings on more blogging but now I feel like I have to make a huge long post to catch up.  But a small blog post is a start to get back in the groove so here we go! We had a 2 week lake vacation which was wonderful.  I took lots of instagram pictures!  Here are a few… It was so nice and relaxing.  A little colder than I would have liked but still a great time!  Hopefully more catching up later in the...

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Another Spring Break Adventure

Another Spring Break Adventure

Last year we went down to the Smokey Mountains but this year we stayed a little closer to home and took the educational route.  Washington DC is only about 5 hours away from us and we have friends that live close to the city.  We had a great time!  I will admit that parking is tough and the METRO is super expensive for a subway, but once you get on the Mall, the DC experience is fantastic. Our ambitions we pretty toned down- Travis and I aimed for only a couple of spots on each of the 2 days we were there.  This strategy made everything less stressful.  It was hard to see all those big and beautiful museums and not even attempt to go inside (we did brave the air and space museum but it was super crowded and we only stayed about an hour), but it would have been a nightmare to try and drag them through the lines and crowds. One of the reasons for the crowds was it is cherrry blossom season.  Due to the cold weather, the trees were only in bud but we did get to see these beautiful Japanese magnolias in bloom.  They looked like heaven after such a long winter! When asked what their favorite thing about DC was, the kids all agreed that they loved playing in the reflecting pond at the national scuplture garden.  Travis loved the Lincoln Memorial and although I loved it all, I think my favorite part was watching the kids crawl around on Albert Einstein… And what about the baby?  It turns out almost 5 months is a great time to travel with a baby!  She was content in her stroller and loved all the sound and action.  I admit I was pretty nervous about how she would fare, but she did really well inspite of the interuption in her routine. We spent 2 days in DC and then traveled back up to Pennsylvania and went to Hershey Park.  What a great park! I can't handle roller coasters so I was happy to stroll the baby around while Travis and the "big" kids went on the rides.  Hershey park is only open on the weekends right now and have special springtime rates.  The weather was great and the crowds were pretty minimal.   Did you go anywhere for Spring break?  Do you have any recommendations for next year?  The kids are hoping we take a little trip each year and I am game!  Hope you all are finally enjoying...

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Beachy Tunic in Voile

Beachy Tunic in Voile

Remember when I made this pretty golden tunic for Anne?  While I was at the beach a few weeks ago, I got some pictures of her wearing it.  I love the color on her and she looked so pretty with all her sun kissed freckles (you wouldn't believe the sunscreen we go though with her!) We had a lovely time in South Carolina.  Lots of time in the pool and just exploring the beach.  We went into Charleston once during the week but it was the rainy day and I didn't get much time to explore.  The beach was much easier for the kids to play in than the Outer Banks, NC beaches we usually go to although not quite as pretty. While on the beach we found some treasures… How is your summer vacation?  Hard to believe it is half way over!!  Although I admit the adjustment to summer vacation is hard for me at first, at this point I love having all the kids home and just relaxing into our easy schedule.  The pregnancy is making me less productive but we all seem to like our slow pace!...

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A new Patchwork Duffle

A new Patchwork Duffle

While on our beach vaction last week, the zipper on Elsie's duffel bag broke.  I knew it was only a matter time since it was a cheapy zipper.  The bag was one of my trials from when I created the pattern and instead of trying to replace the zipper, I thought it would be more fun to create a new bag! I used my bag of yellow scraps and cut all pieces (that were big enough) to a 6" width.  This meant that the piece were all different heights but all were the same width.  This made for a more random and casual patchwork but made putting them together easier than having all completely different sizes. Elsie and I both like how it turned out.  Yellow is a new favorite!  Happily, the chosen 6" width worked great for the side panels and the zipper section.  I made my own piping (more about that in the piped pot holders tutorial) and matched the handles with the same solid yellow. The only troubles I had with this bag was my choice to use duck cloth for the lining.  I am having a love affair with duck cloth but this time I may have gone too far!  It was too thick at the zipper section and gave me fits.  If I were to do it again, I may do duck cloth for the nice shape it gives the bag but do the zipper section lining in a cotton.   I did add a layer of cotton fusible interfacing to the main panels behind the patchwork.  I think it gave me a boost of confidence but wasn't really neccesary- i just felt like the patchowrk might be sturdier with it back there holding things together. We are going to the beach again this coming week and then to my parents in Atlanta for the 4th of July.  I have to fit in all this travel before the new addition (a girl!!! due in Novemember) comes and makes getting around a challenge again.  I will probably be sticking close to home for the next couple of years! The Make Your Getaway Duffel is on sale for only $4.50 until midnight tonight!  Remember to enter the discount code summer to get the...

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Beachy Days

Beachy Days

We have had a busy last few weeks.  School is done, Elsie had her 8th birthday (for which I made a pretty dress but still haven't taken pictures!) and now we are at the beach.  Phew! This guy is loving his new shovel and not sharing it with anyone… My husband's youngest brother is here from San Francisco with his beautiful girlfriend and all the little girls are in love… My husband is persistant in his attempts to catch bluefish in the surf… and these 2 oldest cousins fight and makeup even better friends than they were...

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National Parking with the Kids

National Parking with the Kids

Since we had NO snow days (truly a miracle) off from school this year, we had a break from school of 10 days.  That is pretty crazy for our school district and I took advantage by planning a trip south to see my parents for easter.  We decided to take our time on the way down and made several stops with our big destination being the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.   We stayed the night before in Gatlinburg which was crowded but really cute.  We got going pretty early and drove into the park at about 8:30.  This was great because although there were still lots of people around (turns out spring break in the smoky mountains is busy!!), we seemed to be ahead of most crowds for almost the entire day.   After a stop at the visitor's center where we got maps, talked to nice park rangers, and watched a short nature movie about the park, we decided to take a short hike to Laurel Falls. Elsie will earn her hiking badge for Brownies for this little excursion and I am hoping Anne will get one too for Daisies.  For some reason earning badges is a big motivator for kids!  These girls were serious hikers!  This hike was on a paved trail but it was longer than we expected and our 4 year old boy had to bring out his umbrella half way up the trail.  Not sure how this helped but somehow it worked to keep him going. I was laughing but his big sisters did not like this move one bit!  "But it's not even raining and he looks WIERD!" they complained. We finally got to the falls and they were really stunning.  A cool mist was blowing off the water and since there had been a huge rain the night before the water was fierce!!  We were all impressed and agreed the hike in was worth it.   Next we made our way over to Cade's Cove.  The drive over to that section of the park was so beautiful and followed closely next the Pigeon River.  We took a break and the girls waded out into the water.  Cal does not like feeling cold and wet yet so he stayed on the shore with Mommy & Daddy.  Finally we arrived at Cade's cove and I wished that I had packed a better lunch because we stopped to eat out meager snacks at the best picnic location- complete with more water to play in and fire pits and grills.  It would have been fun to have something good to cook up there!   Cade's Cove really did take my breath away.  It is so beautiful...

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After School Spring Walk

After School Spring Walk

I did do a bunny craft at Anne's preschool this week but the pictures are so dark that I couldn't bear to do a whole blog post devoted to them.  They are adorable but preschool lighting is not the best!  You can see them here. The spring weather here in Western PA has been really rainy and it's been hard to get out and enjoy.  Yesterday we had rain in the morning but the sun came out by the time Elsie got home from school so the kids and I took a walk (Cal & I) / bike ride (girls) to the creek close by our house.  We have lived at this house for about 15 months now and I didn't discover this walk until early last summer.   It is so beautiful by the creek and I thought I would share this with you all since you got all those city shots last time! You can only see this waterfall in the early spring before all the leaves come in.  It is a pretty steep hill- how in the world did all those daffodils get there?? Anne has learned to ride without training wheels recently.  The girls had a great time riding over since it is slightly downhill.  They were not so positive on the way back since at one point I was carrying both bikes, my camera, and dragging Cal along behind me. The wild flowers in the woods are just starting to bloom.  Bloodroot is all along the road on this walk.  Easy for pictures and I love how happy and bright it is among all the dark stick and leaves. When we got off the road and went down the path to the creek I saw this flower which after a little research I realized it is just trout lily unopened. and the trillium are just starting to bloom too!  These have always been my favorite. We set the bikes aside and went down to the creek.  It was pretty cold but the kids wanted to put their feet in the water.  Isn't that part of being a kid?  Wanting to put your feet in the water no matter the temperature? Can you see where all this water play is headed?  They all fell in, in chronological order of their age.  Just for you to know, each consented to having their picture taken… and finally,  although it took awhile and she didn't cry about it until we got home and saw that she had a scrape on her knee, even the big girl fell in… The falls in the freezing cold water didn't seem to bother anyone too much… At the end I wanted to be...

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A Fresh Start

A Fresh Start

Phew!  The Handmade Arcade is finally over.  I have to admit all that production sewing wasn't my bag.  Things went well- not awesome but well and I am happy to have the experience.   Part of the reason I feel a little let down is that my focus is so different now than it was 16 months ago when I did this show before.  I like making patterns now and sewing for myself.   I loved seeing all the people looking and it was so fun to talk to people about my sewing.  It was so cool to see all the mothers and daughters, sisters and friends together.  I got a great feel for what people like to buy at these shows and I handed out almost all of my 250 postcards that I made.  People like the…. Crayon Folios!  Not a huge surprise on that one.  I made 15 and sold 15 but I could have made 30 and probably sold most of those too!   My sister (pictured above!)came up from Atlanta to work the show with me.  It was a big help.  She owns part of a  store in Atlanta and was really helpful with display, organization, & talking up the products.  We want to do another show together and she will be in charge of merchandising, display, business cards, etc.  That would be HUGE for me since I get so focused on my sewing and creating that the organization is an after thought.   Accepting some help from my sister would be wonderful, especially since she is actually much more stylish than me in the first place!  On Sunday we (the WHOLE family) took her to the airport.  On the way home we stopped at the Pittsburgh Incline.  It was so fun.  Sunday mornings are a great time to see your city tourist stops!  Almost no one was there and it was beautiful.  By some miracle, I remembered my camera.  But the only lens I had was the 50mm which I thought would be a mistake since you wouldn't be able to see the scenery but the pictures turned out great!  That 50mm lens is such a gem.  WARNING!  HISTORY LESSON TO FOLLOW…  Sorry friends, I was a history major so you are going to get some info that I learned yesterday which I think is really interesting. As some of you may know, Pittsburgh used to be a huge industrial city.  The big boom happened in the late 1800s and as so many people (mainly European Immigrants) moved to the city, housing became a big issue.  The city is situated in a valley and surrounded by 3 rivers.  The only place for the workers...

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