I haven’t had very much time lately for personal projects, but I squirreled away a little time here and there to design a new rubber stamp. This stamp is mostly for client thank you cards, general correspondence and times when I just need to stamp something. The finished product arrived last week, and I put it to work right away.
A few ladies came together over the weekend for a crafternoon of holiday crafting and blood orange mimosa sipping. We filled an entire afternoon (and evening) with making and snacking, while listening to covers and Christmas music. Among the projects completed (or at least started): jewelry making, zippered pouch making, stamping, sewing, and pants making.
I’ve finally come to terms with this fall/winter/rapidly approaching holiday season. We’ve got a few holiday events under our belts around here already, with a few more coming up this week and over the weekend. The tree is currently standing (for now) and the exceedingly messy office has a whole window full of lights.
Many holiday projects are underway over here: sewing, knotting, stamping and stitching, and tickets are booked for a quick holiday trip home to Seattle. Work projects are slowly and surely getting wrapped up for the year. Merch now has letterpressed gift tags in the shop, printed by The Aesthetic Union using the logo I designed a few months back. We’re very close to launching a brand new Kate-designed website for a client in the next few weeks, and I’m excited to share a Skill Exchange surprise by early next year!
For two years this project has been looking at me from the corner of the room, daring me to do something about it. The old black trunk sitting under the window in our living room was in bad need of some attention when we bought it two years ago, but it was a sturdy little thing with metal hardware and handles. Inside there are two lift-out trays for storing small items, with deep storage underneath. I was certain it would just take an afternoon to clean up the trunk with some paint, and make it amazing. Instead, we brought it home, placed it in the bay window, filled it with crap, and mostly forgot about it. At one point we made a cushion for the top of it, but then you know, we forgot about it.
After a recent visit to the weird and amazing California Caster on 17th, we revived our plans to update the trunk. We decided to replace our current coffee table with one on wheels, but couldn’t find something we both liked. I convinced Intern that we should try the trunk as our coffee table (the verdict is still out on whether he agrees). I found a set of red casters for our trunk, and after consulting my pantone color book, Intern and I settled on a paint color. The wood was painted a matte black, and it was also pretty scratched and dented in a few places, so we had to repair it with wood putty, and sand the trunk before we could prime and paint. All our neighbors got a good look at us over the course of three weekends worth of painting on the sidewalk in front of our house. The weather got a little iffy for a few weeks, but we finally finished painting just before I promised away our current coffee table to friends. This project should have been a breeze, but it was not.
We’re not entirely sure if the trunk will stay as our coffee table, but I like it for now. It is much smaller than our previous coffee table, but our living room feels new again. The trunk may end up going back to the bay window, if and when we find a better coffee table alternative. The casters were on sale for a little more than $2 each, and the hardware and wood mounts were just under $10. I can’t recall what we originally paid for the wood trunk, but I am guessing it was well under $20.
I’m making a handful of gifts this year for friends and family, but not just any gifts… gifts requiring new skills with complicated first-time-learning-instructions! Weirdly difficult projects! Painfully slow learning curve type projects! I do this to myself, and have no one else to blame. A moment of weakness at the fabric store lead me to buying 9 yards of the cutest pale yellow pom-pom trim, which lead to many hours of tedious pinning, some swearing, seam ripping and additional swearing in the form of “never again will I sew with adorably tiny pom-pom trim”.
But then again, these pom-poms are practically irresistible, so maybe I’ll be fooled by them again. Also on my list of sewing materials to never touch again? Adorable and painfully soft dotted micro fleece. It was a miserable monster to work with. I sure hope these not-yet-born twin babies appreciate all the torture their new quilts put me through. I used this tutorial by The Purl Bee, but adapted it to make two small square baby quilts, and I used stupidly stubborn fabric and trim. These small square quilts can be used as play mats when the babies are little, and later can be good stroller quilts or travel quilts, since I made little drawstring fleece bags to store the quilts in. I recommend the tutorial, but not my modifications… although the finished project is pretty cute. I’m almost tempted to make more.