So you may have noticed that I've been MIA lately.
I started a new position at a new company which doesn't allow me the same amount of time I used to have. That combined with my home and mama duties- I've been seeeriously busy.
I feel like good changes are coming- so I will be back, but for now I need to focus on my immediate life and family.
I am SO LATE announcing the winner for the shop credit giveaway!
I intended to extend it out one more week, then I picked the winner via Random.org but then I didn't announce it. I am so sorry! Things are crazy over here. In addition to reopening the shop, my mom is moving in with us and I started a new job.
So with that said, the winner is...................
After all your patience with me getting time together to sew, I finally mustered up enough to start up the new collections. You'll notice slight changes in the new look: no embellishments, colored zippers instead of the former all-white, thicker interfacing for a softer feel, and extra-long zipper pulls which make opening and closing a snap! ...er, a zip! ;)
(still cheesy after all these weeks)
Here's a peek!
In celebration we're going to do a giveaway!
Winner will get $50 shop credit.
Winner will be chosen by Random.org on Friday at 5pm
And of course, feel free to leave me feedback with your thoughts.
If I've seemed MIA in the blogosphere lately and haven't visited you in a while- don't take offense! I've been a busy bee over here but I'm excited to rejoin civilization and get back to reading your blogs.
Thanks for all the kind comments and all my new friends on Instagram!
This post is really important to me, because it signifies a big change coming to my shop, and the overall look of my products in general.
For months I've been pondering ways to make my high quality pouches and bags different from everything out there and let me tell ya- it's hard. There are so many variations of what I make that every time I would think I had stumbled on something original, I would get all excited (woohoo for me! These are going to be so cute!) Then I'd see it being done somewhere else and get totally crushed. Not only because you feel defeated, but because you're suddenly struck with an ethics check. You want to adore the things you make, but you also want to respect what's already out there. I thought "Okay- I know my stuff needs an embellishment. But what? Ruffles!" So I made ruffles with printed fabric at the start of it all. But let's be real, there are a ton of other shops doing that.
Old-school photo of a whimsy lane pouch
So then I got the idea to utilize my solid fabric by making ruffles...
...but then I saw that too. At that point you think "Well damn- I've already got all this inventory made and have somewhat established myself in the handmade world- what do I do? Keep making the products the way I have been? -the way I've loved?- or really rack my brain for a more original look to love?" I decided to do the latter. The answer for me was so much simpler than I had thought. Literally. I decided to get rid of ruffles. I know. It seems so anti-climactic! But for me this was big because with all the shops out there, I really don't ever see anything comparable to what I make without them. Or at least without some variation of them.
But that also meant other changes needed to happen. Like my zipper- I had always used white. It was kind of like "my thing". But with no ruffle, I needed a pop of color (you know how much I love my pops of color!) so I ordered up a bunch of crisp, beautiful, zany, fun, (and any other great adjective you can think of) zippers from my favorite indie vendor ZipIt, and made the choice that I was going to let the fabric speak for itself with the help of a great, well-considered, zipper. Of course that also means my zipper pulls will have to be more dramatic too...
Peek of my new look via instagram
As with any company -big or small- changes happen. Things progress, things evolve and change can be good. I hope this change will be good. I'm still ironing out my options- like what I'll do for my bigger stuff. I'm not sure if items like big pouches and totes will look bare with no embellishment. I would love ideas or recommendations in the comments section on what to do with those! I often take to my facebook, twitter or instagram to get your feedback whenever I'm stuck in a rut, so chat away with your ideas! Until I am done getting some newbies made, my shop will be closed. I will keep you posted on the reopen so make sure to check back often :)
So what do you think? Could you could love a bag without an embellishment?
I like to fancy myself to be an amateur interior designer from time to time.
I'm cheap. Not like "line your purse with gallon-sized ziplock bags at the buffet!" kind of cheap, just the "That's how much?!" cheap.
So that can present a challenge when it comes to decorating our home. I definitely have champagne taste on a beer budget, but I cut myself some slack because a) I'm still pretty young and b) at least we own this house. But for realz, making a track home look unique with novice home improvement skills and a husband who is no Handy Manny, is difficult.
So my methods are knowing where to shop, and what to hold out for (more on that later.)
Here are some shots of my progress so far.
Office Wall- I painted an ugly old mirror gold to tie in the gold dollar store frames. I used gold glittered scrapbook paper as matting on some photos as well. I never pay more than 10$ for a frame. Some places to get cheap frames: TjMaxx, Ross, Marshalls, Homegoods, Goodwill, Walmart, the dollar store & sometimes Target when on clearance.
Paint was an "oops!" color from Home Depot. I think it was like $7 and its my favorite in the house. Always look in the Oops pile first!
Opposite wall houses shelves of fabric and a twin desk for sewing.
Poms reflecting in the mirror are a mega-cheap (can you say... a dollar?) and easy way to add pops of color to a room. Here's a tutorial I made on how to make them.
Black & white glass piece was $10 at TjMaxx, Black vase $2.99 on sale at JoAnn Etc. Green french bookend $3.99 at Goodwill.
I always take the sleeves off books.
The natural binding is usually brightly colored and looks great displayed.
Our bed. Yes it's a full, yes it sucks! Bigger bed is next splurge.
There's a fluffy white comforter I've got my eye on at Target but I'm waiting for it to go on sale.
Striped & chartreuse pillows: $14.99 each at TJMaxx.Chevron ones made by me.
Table in bedroom
$65 at TJMaxx after a damage discount. Side against wall has small flaw. Always ask for a discount on damaged items! They want to get rid of them.
Gold-rimmed vase $9.99 at TJMaxx
Splatter-paint art was a project done at school with the kids. I cut it in half and framed it to match painting above bed.
Frames $9.99 each from Ross
I don't flatter myself to be an artist- my paintings are only occupying the walls temporarily until I can find/afford real artwork. We have big walls that need color, so doing your own paintings is a cheap way to add some. If all else fails, buy a big mirror. You can get them for cheap at Homegoods or Goodwill.
A lot of you have mentioned my vintage french provincial couch on Instagram and Facebook. I will post more pictures after I've sewn the pillows for it. I got this sofa at a Vintage Market for $400 after negotiating and after tax & delivery it was still only $475.
Here's a photo I took of Sam where you can see its size.
Books are a cheap way to decorate a small table because you probably already have some you can use- just remove the sleeve!
Lamps (there's a matching one on the other table) were $8 combined from Goodwill.
Jennifer Aniston looking creepy in the corner - free.
Visable through cut out in livingroom wall.
I stock up on white pillar candles when they're on sale. Eventually this whole ledge will be covered in them.
I got this signage "A" from a store that was going out of business for $20
We painted the cabinets and added hardware which was $170 total.
It completely changed the kitchen. Here's the tutorial.
Banana Republic white candle luminary $3.99 from Goodwill
$4.99 bunches of flowers at grocery store in recycled jars & bottles.
Flowers in vintage coke bottles help disguise the outlet.