Tag Archives: crafted


A simple pleasure - a new knitting project.

     I find myself complaining all the time, throwing out an “I’m so tired” or an “I wish it were Friday” or an “ugh, it’s so cold today.” You know, the little socially acceptable complaints that we use to make conversation, to bind us together in our mutual disappointment. But I wonder how harmful they are to me as I try to live a more contented life.
     What if, instead of grumbling about the weather, I remarked on the beauty of the leaves changing color? What if I viewed it as an opportunity to wear kneesocks and drink hot chocolate? What if, instead of complaining about being tired, I thanked God for another morning? It’s hard not to look forward to the weekend, especially when that’s the only time I get to see my husband, but there is joy to be found in every single day, not just in the days that carry me away from work and back to him.
     Each day is full of blessings. Today, for example, I have a cup of hot coffee on my desk. I’m having a good hair day. I woke up refreshed and excited. I’m wearing warm goldenrod tights under my trousers, and I love the flash of cheery color at my feet. I packed a simple, delicious lunch this morning. This evening, I get to see my parents and curl up with Daniel and relax. It’s nothing extraordinary, but it’s a good day, and I’m blessed to be living it.
     Maybe if I start commenting on the good things, it’ll have a positive effect on my outlook, and maybe it will even challenge those around me to focus on what’s good in their lives. Maybe being joyful is a simple way for me to proclaim God’s love and goodness, and maybe I can connect with others over shared words of praise, instead of shared complaints. A smile and a hopeful word won’t take any more energy than a sigh and a grumble.
     Have a great weekend, everyone. 🙂

Sunshine Day

It has been lovely and sunny and hot here, making me want to live in sundresses and sandals.

I mentioned last time that I’ve been sewing, and here is one of the fruits of my labor – a pretty, stripey, purple dress!  The inspiration came from a lovely Kate Spade creation.

This picture is included because it looks like I'm playing tag. Made it to base!

Has it been hot where you live?  What are your warm-weather staples?

God has blessed me by humbling me.

Been a long time…

It’s obviously been very quiet around here.  Life has been…well, life, with all its surprises.

Me with my baby boy. 🙂

Though you wouldn’t know it from the frequency of my posts lately, I do love having this space.  Maybe I’m not cut out to be a terribly consistent blogger, but I enjoy posting and the interactions I am sometimes lucky enough to have with other bloggers.  There are things in my life lately that have taken my attention away from my little corner of the internet, and to get you all nice and updated, here they are, in bullet form (because I like it):

  • Daniel (my husband) is going to law school this fall!  We found out earlier this year that his position was being terminated and that he had a few months to figure out what to do, and so he applied to law school, which he’d been thinking about for years, and he got in!  I’m so excited for him.
  • Work is crazy busy for me right now.
  • I have been sewing dresses like mad, and loving every moment of it.  Except, you know, those moments when I make a mistake and have to get out the seam ripper.  Hopefully I can show you some of my final products soon.
  • We have started riding bikes.  I have started being sore.
  • I have been writing some fiction.
  • Like so many other lovely people out there, I have kicked shampoo to the curb.  This isn’t the first time; I was briefly poo-free in early 2007 and then again last spring, but I’ve never been able to keep it up very long.  I always end up using some product in my hair that I need sulfates to remove.  I’m really trying this time, though.  It’s been a week and a half.  I’m also trying to grow out my hair and transition it back to my natural color (dark blonde).
  • I’m on a mission to become as healthy as possible.  I’m trying to get my diet and exercise routine straightened out, I’m trying to give up pop and other chemical-y stuff, and I’m trying to take vitamins every day like a good girl.  I’m never good at sustaining such things for very long, but I’m definitely trying.
  • I am nerdily being enthralled by Game of Thrones.  Read the series, yo.
Watch for me.  I’ll be back soon. 🙂
God has blessed me by giving me opportunities.


Just a quick post before bed to show you what I wore today, the last day before I embark on the 30 for 30.  This is a jumper that I made up quickly one evening before Christmas, tried it on before inserting the zipper and hemming it, determined it was a bit too small, and left it hanging around until last night.  I figured I should finish and wear it while it’s still winter.  It fits, and I’m pretty proud of it, especially the fact that I matched the plaid pretty well on the seams.

Have a good night!

Lucky girl with three new dresses

I have a patient husband, one who indulges me when I ask him to do a photoshoot with me.  A photoshoot that includes props.  And wardrobe changes.  How else was I going to show you the dresses I’ve made?  These are my second, third, and fourth dresses made from a pattern (my first was a few years ago).  I’ve made other dresses just by eyeballing, cutting, and sewing, but most of those haven’t turned out too well.

Late afternoon sunshine.

Yep, you’ve seen this one before, but I decided to throw it in, anyway.

The Dress of Many Alterations.

Here’s the dress that I made and wore to the wedding I attended on Saturday.  Despite taking several pictures, we couldn’t get a good one of me standing up in the dress, so I’ll have to show you next time I wear it.

Dress #3 – gingham!

Black and white, because the color turned out terrible in this photo, and I couldn't fix it. The green dress is made a lot like this one.

Originally, I wanted a big, swingy circle skirt for the gingham dress, but I just didn’t have enough fabric.  I’d purchased the gingham a couple years ago, wanting to make a shirtdress like one I’d seen on Kiera Knightley, but I’d never quite figured out how.  But now I have a new dress that was basically free!  (I’d bought the supplies long ago, and just dug them out of my stash, so they felt free to me!)

I’m not sure I could pick a favorite dress out of these three, but right now I’m loving the gingham one.  The green one is my eldest child – I made all my mistakes on her.  She was strong-willed, but I struggled with her until she developed into a beautiful young lady.  The coral one is my middle – somewhat easier to handle, but with adjustment problems.  And the gingham is my baby – I coddled her and fussed over her, and I had a better idea of what I was doing.  There’s also the thrill of the new, since I haven’t worn her outside of my backyard yet.  I’m excited to style her up – what’s more summery and fun than gingham?

During our shoot, Daniel kept reminding me that he’s not a photographer.  “You’re my photographer,” I said, and I really do think he’s getting better at taking my photos.  Now if only I were better at posing for them!

Have a beautiful evening!

Keep it cool

I’ve been sewing like crazy this past week.  I’m a sewing machine! (Get it?  You get it.)  I mentioned a few posts ago that I was working on a dress, and I finished it up Friday night, at which point I jumped right into making another dress – and I finished that dress in only a few hours.  I wore the first dress on Saturday to a lovely outdoor wedding, but I didn’t get any pictures.  I debuted the second dress on Sunday at church (with a cardigan, which I removed for these pictures).

Look at Miss Cool Shades. The flowered tote I made goes quite well with this dress!

I love this fabric so much.  It’s a Swiss dot that I got on clearance at JoAnn’s, after nearly giving up on finding anything cute.  I modified New Look 6910, view D, by omitting the pleats in the back (too much volume over my behind!) and making the bodice strapless.  I really like this pattern, but I would suggest making it smaller than you think you need.  Like, way smaller.  The measurements given on the back don’t really seem to be accurate, and I ended up having to take it in a good bit.  The bodice is still a bit too big.  I’m hoping to become an expert on fit and alterations, so that I can make clothes that flatter me perfectly.  It really does make such a difference.

Second-day hair. I got up late and went with what was left over from the wedding. Some days are like that!

I styled this dress pretty casually.  It’s summer, and I love the look of a simple, pretty dress with minimal fuss.  These sandals are getting a bit worn, but I still love them.  I got them at Target four summers ago, and they are the perfect flip-flops – braided leather(ish) straps, bronzey detailing, casual and pretty all at once.  I decided to wear my big ol’ necklace, which looks like strawberry candy, and because I chose to wear that, I forewent belting the dress.  I think that would have just been too much, and I kind of wanted to let the dress stand alone.  I added sunglasses and a homemade bracelet, and I was good to go.

Well, I’m off to my sewing machine.  I have another dress in the works, and about five swimming around in my head.  Let’s see how long this streak lasts!


I’ve always loved beachy, summery jewelry – wooden beads and seashells call out to the hippie in me!  A couple of years ago, I saw this post on Craftster and knew I needed something similar.  I made the necklace and absolutely loved it, but hadn’t played with shells much more until this past weekend, when my mom told me for the upteenth time how much she liked my necklace, and I decided to make her one.  Then I played around with variations, and ended up with some jewelry that I really love!

I wore that last one to church yesterday with a simple tan dress, and I got a ton of compliments.  I know that shell jewelry has a reputation of being tacky and too beach-souvenir-ish, but I think it can be fun and pretty.  What do you think?