Friday, May 29, 2009

Summer Present

I finished them all. Every last commission, design your own, and special projects due out in the month of May. First I'd like to say, thank you for the business if you are one of the delightful people who ordered from me this past month. It was so very fun for me to make up a boat load of goodies and see them go to new aquaintenances and old.

I must say though, it just about killed me. Exaggeration, yes I know. But wow, I was cutting and interfacing at 11pm many nights. And this gal, she usually poops out right after the kidlets are popped into bed at 8pm.

The last month has been a whirl wind, and yet its given me the opportunity to focus on what it is exactly I love about the business and where I'd like to go, going forward. I guess I'm learning that I like the sewing...but I LOVE the designing. Sitting with stacks of fabrics and making decisions on how the clump of scraps will become something like what you see in the picture? Yes, this is me. (By the way, this is my new summer bag set, complete with cowgirl snap business card holder. Happy summer to me! Can we take a minute to bow to the pink fringe?)

This has been a bit of a true up, come to your maker moment for me in the business since the part that I like....but don't your own, (where the ladies get to design their own bags and I simply make them up) pays well and keeps me busy. The part I LOVE, the designing doesn't move those bags as fast. Or should I say, I haven't figured that part out YET.

So, where does this leave me? At a cross in the road, with choices I suppose. This summer I plan to do a bit of research and perhaps some pounding of the pavement to see if there are some nice outlets for me to sell, sell, sell those creations in whatever fashion I love. In the mean time I don't know whether I'm ready to completely shut the door on "design your own" parties, which by the way is completely different than working with a client on a special commission for something custom, but I'm perhaps taking a step back from actively marketing the parties.

Ahh, there I said it. Does it have to be true now? Hee hee, we'll see.

Now, I must take my pink fringe new bag and accessories to the beach for a week. I will watch my twoladybugs build sand castles and eat more shrimp than one person should eat. Have a wonderful start to your summer everyone!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Taking the Girls Out in the Back for Some Sun

Oh, I have to admit it has been hard to keep my head down and blinders on the last couple of days.

It is sunny and 65-70 degrees here. Ahhh, what a welcome change from the dreary rain of the last few weeks.
Should I complain though, when that dreary rain and the hurculean efforts of the Muffin Man have made our back yard grass look like kelly green carpet? Probably not.

Spring is finally here in the midwest. That is why I decided to treat myself and "the girls" here to a short backyard photo shoot.

Don't they look summery, all "dolled" up and ready to go home with their new owners? The black and white one has bubble gum pink lining. I'm suddenly very aware of how happy a sunny lining with a touch of sewn coordinating ribbon can make a person. How nice to have something small like that in your daily life, open a handbag and smile at the bright happy color you see. I'm easily entertained.

Alright, only 4 more orders to go in the May '09 lot.

Then I can concentrate on that backyard Memorial Day picnic we will be hosting this weekend. I'm going to treat us to a trip to Trader Joe's for a nice bottle of wine and some fun appetizers.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Three More

Ahh, they're falling like bugs at an ant trap picnic now.

It does help to stack up the orders and cut cut cut first. Then re-stack up the already cut out projects into a pile on the corner of the craft table.

I'm not sure why but the projects do seem to make their way to the "hanging wall" faster if I can cut up a batch before I interface and sew anything. Or perhaps I can only tolerate the slowness of a multi project order in the beginning few days, after that to keep sanity I suppose I need to see tangible progress.

Hipsters are in again this spring. Probably for the summer travelers who want hands-free while site seeing and on trips here and there. I think I might want one now. Oh, will I have time before vacation? Who knows.

The picture of the lilac, celery and brown hipster is just not that great. It is a much prettier fabric in real life.

Last night I took a break from the sewing cave and went to my local quilt shop to teach a class. 1001 Uses Zipper Pouch is what everyone made. It was very fun. There were a mix of experienced and beginner sewers.

I simply loved the look on people faces as they exited with a completed little pouch project in hand.

I already have an idea for another class this summer. Fabric baskets. I'm dying to try one. But, must finish orders first. Whip cracking in background.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Life At The The Factory on the Cul-De-Sac

Ooh, rainy day here in the mid-west at what feels a bit like an assembly line plant. My faithful assistant, Liv worked in accounts receivable while I manned the production room.

First, I worked on this ruffle clutch. I made several of these at Christmas time but hadn't been asked for one until last week. The inside has a nice duponi red silk surprise lining. Fun.

Looking at it here I just realized I forgot the wristlet strap. Oh good grief, where is Inspector number 9 when you need her? This one will have to go back on the line.

Next up was a little zipper pouch with a side body handle installed. Great for summer trips to amusement parks.

Finally, this bag was ordered in a postman style. Hands free again, for summer in a sweet pink and green theme.

Ahhh, 3 more down 15 to go before the end of the month.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Sew Girl Sew

Back in March I sat down in a quiet space and set my intention with the Universe that work would come my way...I had the time and I was open for custom work.

And, now it is May and I'm swamped. Whee, I need an elf. An elf who cuts, irons and sews. Oh, and since I'm asking could he also look a bit like Matthew McConaughey? I think that would be pleasant to look at while I worked alongside. Seriously, I tried for a real elf but she couldn't make it work this week. That is what I get for giving this nice lady no notice at all. I'm up for a challenge, I can get all my orders done on time I know it. Cough....

In the last 2 1/2 weeks I've had three shows. I've already delivered the first 22 bags from the first show and now I'm working on the next 18 or so.

Oh, and I want to finish them all before I leave for vacation on May 30th. That's 18 more bags in 18 days.

Sew, girl sew.

In the interest of keeping it exciting want to follow along and see if I meet my goal?

Here are the 3 that I made last night and today.

Send words of encouragement and caffeine. Lots of caffeine.

I'll post em' as I finish.

Almost forgot, more good ten year old iron died and I hopped of the cu-de-sac and got the most gorgeous silver shark that pumps out steam like a nuclear reactor. She's so pretty I might feature her along with the next small batch hopefully to come tomorrow. That's reason to stop back tomorrow right? Iron photos.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Coming Up To Take A Breath

Ahh, I'm up for a breath of fresh air. I had a big show a week and a half ago and have been seriously and semi-permanently chained to the Husquavarna. Cut, iron, sew repeat...22 times. That has been my week and thus my lack of any word on the blogs and the website, which has also been shamelessly neglected as well. People who read the ladybugs blog probably think I took my kids and fell off the end of the earth. No really, I shooshed my kids out the back door told them to take the dog and spend some quality time on the swing set. Which they have done happily and graciously. Oh yes, and they've eaten their year's fill of hot dogs and pretzels too. I can make hot dogs and iron interfacing at the same time it seems. That takes some multitasking talent, I'll have to add that to my resume. No bother that I am up a few finger burns and one index finger that was sewn through. All would have been fine if I hadn't panic'd and ripped the thread out before unleashing it from the machine. Good grief you'd think I'd learn.

So, onto bigger and better and more interesting items. Pictures. What has all this blood and sweat produced? Here are a few goodies. This first picture shows a few I designed and whipped up recently. They are currently living at the 4th Street Gallery Boutique...hopefully to find a funky home soon.

These next ones show some of the design your own items at the most recent show. I am simply the sewing flunky on these. Ladies did pretty well right?

That's not all of them, but a few that give you the idea. A few people have contacted me recently about diaper bags. Maybe that is what the next few projects will be. Not to mention that my neighbor recently brought her new baby girl home from the NICU. I've been meaning to get on top of that situation as well. Preemie baby Ava needs a fun summer diaper bag right, preferrably before she's potty trained.

And that is the Pink Evita news update. Two shows happening later this week. I'll report back.