Sunday, November 22, 2009

How Have I Missed This?

I found this on the Austin Area Birth Center site  It is a beautiful birth center and Austin is very lucky to have it.  Having been immersed in birth all these years, I'm amazed that I have never heard this poem before.  I received a wonderful, touching note from a couple whose birth I was fortunate enough to attend and it again reinforced that I am so lucky to be able to do what I do.  And this poem says it all.

A Poem: Being Born is Important

Being Born Is Important

Being born is important
You who have stood at the bedposts
and seen a mother on her high harvest day,
the day of the most golden of harvest moons for her.

You who have seen the new wet child
dried behind the ears,
swaddled in soft fresh garments,
pursing its lips and sending a groping mouth
toward the nipples where white milk is ready~

You who have seen this love’s payday
of wild toil and sweet agonizing~

You know being born is important.
You know nothing else was ever so important to you.
You understand the payday of love is so old,
So involved, so traced with the circles of the moon,
So cunning with the secrets of the salts of the blood~
It must be older than the moon, older than the salt.

~Carl Sandburg

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Mud, Glorious Mud

I've mentioned the Canelo Project before.  It's a beautiful, inspiring place in the Canelo Hills of Southern Arizona.  I  was lucky enough to attend a workshop there a couple of years and learned what has allowed me to do what I've done with my home.

Check out their latest work:  Canelo Chronicles

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Post HomeTour Home Tour: And We're Walking, Walk...

There is no walking, walking in my house, only walking. It's not that big. But it makes it oh, so easy to maintain. While I love looking at the large houses I see online with lots of frou-frou, honestly, the first question is that pops in my brain: "Who is gonna dust that?" It's all beautiful, but I am a low-maintenance girl. I also can't stand The 3 Stooges because when they start throwing those pies around, I'm thinking, "And who will clean that up?" Just a little stroll through my psyche.

The sum total of my fall decor!

So I got a little highjacked from the Home Tour with my sewing for the Airstream, which is coming along nicely, thank you.

So, now we are in the hallway. The infamous border conceived to cover up the infamous drywall boo-boo. Fact is, the border now looks like it's always been there and I can't remember what the wall looked like before.

Watercolor by my friend Mark Johnson. 
He and wife Bobbie are both talented artists.

And in this corner...the wall behind the kitchen-cabinet-turned-media-center-server-cabinet, used to be brown clay and it was just too much brown. So it became white and it was another excellent choice as it really brightened up the room. And yes, that is clay paint.

Then behind the sofa, I changed up the sofa table. The lamps (as old as the hills, from Target originally, but that's not where I got them) used to be in my bedroom and of course they used to be some other color. The white "legs" were on the wall behind the wood stove but but they just weren't happening there. So, now they're here.

Much better

And the sofa table itself used to be a coffee table. It had been used in our previous home but had no place here and was actually in the wood pile. I needed a very narrow sofa table, the top being the only part that would be visible. So I picked up a black aquarium stand for $3 at a church sale, cut down the coffee table top and attached it to the stand. Just what I needed!

Okey-dokey, it's 08:29 and my sewing machine is calling.  Later...

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Fabric shopping, couldn't you just go broke?

I went to my SAS Fabrics yesterday searching for some upholstery fabric to recover the dinette cushions in the Airstream.  The lovely fawn-mauve cut velveteen is just not doing it for me this century.  There are big "discussions" in the Airstream community regarding the pros and cons of keeping older models original or updating.  Just like politics, there are 2 vocal sides to that isle. I have seen apoplexy over the issue of painting the cabinets.  My POV, you pay for the gas to haul the thing around and you can tell me what to keep, until then, she's mine to do with as I please!

But, I digress.

I found the dinette fabric almost as soon as I walked in.  It coordinates beautifully with the curtains and has that mod-retro look.  But then I made the mistake, or the strategic decision, of "just looking around" and walked by the remnant bins.  Now these are cardboard boxes placed on tables with a beautiful  hodge-podge of cotton and cotton/poly folded pieces.  What could be more fun?  I found Michael Miller, Amy Butler, Alice Kennedy and Free Spirit.  Yes, they were all hiding in those bins, a bit cramped but none the worse.  Can you say Jackpot!  I kept circling the table, coming back to the Michael Miller Posey Garden and then I found the other 2 pieces that coordinated.  And wouldn't you know, just that morning I was sitting on my front porch, looking at the throw pillows and thinking I would have to recover them due to fading by the sun.
  Done, done and done!  And all the fabrics, yes even the uphostery, were $3.99 a yard.

Purty, huh?

Monday, November 9, 2009

New Pleat-less Curtains for the Airstream

I love it when a job turns out to be easier than expected.  It's been awhile since I've made curtains or drapes so I was facing this task with some trepidation.  But I took time to think through the steps and the job was actually fun.  It's all straight sewing so the difficult part is the measuring and cutting.  And of course in the Airstream there are no 2 windows the same size, so I had to be very careful about making sure I was putting the right pieces together.

Here's what the curtains looked like before:

They weren't in terrible shape but had some water stains and just didn't suit me.  I think the pleats are a little formal for a camping trailer but, it is an Airstream.  If you notice, there are pleats along the top and bottom with the curtains being "hung" with plastic clips attached to a small piece of elastic which is tacked to the curtain.
The plastic clip is then threaded into an aluminum rail.  And, there are 2 different types of clips to fit 2 different types of rail.  Sheesh!

Anyway, here are the basic steps:

Needed items:  curtain fabric, lining fabric (I used Roc-Lon Special Suede), buckram, clips

My favorite cutting tools

Measurements-I measured the finished size of the curtain.  For the outer fabric I added 1 inch to the sides for a seam allowance and hem.  I also added 1/2 inch to the top and bottom.  For the lining  I used the finished size measurement plus 1/4 inch seam allowance for the sides and added 3 inches to the top and bottom.  This was due to a special circumstance with my fabric.  Because the fabric is so sheer, the white buckram used at the top and bottom showed through so I made both hems of the lining fabric long enough to cover the buckram.  Otherwise I would have added only 1/2 inch top and bottom.

My measurements-I'm very visual so I like to make a drawing with the measurements.

Pin outer fabric and lining right sides together.

Remember, due to the side hems there will be "excess" fabric.

 Seam the sides, turn right side out and press.

There's that magically appearing hem
Press under top and bottom hems on outer fabric and lining.

Insert buckram between the layers,

Sew  hems and then create the heading by seaming 3 inches below the hem.

And there you have it, a curtain.

Next post I'll put on the clips (hopefully getting the right clips on the right curtains : /) and show some finished photos.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Creating memories

A Christmas Wreath Made From Punch Card's
My friend Michelle, at Figment of My Cogitation, has written yet another great post.  This one is entitled The Value of Doing Stuff and will twang a heartstring with all of us DIYers, crafters, creators, artists.

My mother belonged to a Homemaker's Club made up of women in the neighborhood, most within walking distance because those were the days of one-car families.  The ladies, probably 6-10 of them, would rotate being hostess.  At the meetings they would have a ...meeting and then do a craft project.  I remember wrapping string dipped in glue around balloons to make string ball lights (except I don't think ours ever had an actual light) and folding data punch cards (remember those?) into cones and attaching them to cardboard.  When sprayed green it made quite the festive wreath.

The best part however, was the lunch.  There was always some cool thing that Mom never made at home and dessert!  Yes, dessert at lunch.  Will wonders never cease?

Create on!


Wednesday, November 4, 2009

In Other News...

Airstream Redo-

I think I have all the stuff needed to start the curtains.  But like any DIY project, there is always that one thing you forget without which the project comes to a complete standstill.  What will it be this time?

Tiny House-

Still percolating... But check out this one:

Post Home Tour Home Tour: Dining...Area

Yes, area, in the middle of a larger room.  But not that large, the kitchen, DR, LR space is approximately 14 x 28.  Small by most standards.

In order to trick the eye a bit and make it appear larger, I did a couple of things:
  1. windows with views on 3 walls, to carry line-of-sight beyond the walls, and
  2. very high ceilings.
The high ceilings only work to create volume if the eye is drawn upward.  This won't happen if everything on the walls ends at the height of 8 feet.  I had this problem, so I had to fix it.

Here is a photo of the dining area window before:

and after:

It really makes quite a difference.  And yes, that is all done with clay paint on the earthen plaster.  I drew a half-circle above the window and taped off the design. I loved doing this project.

I have some other little changes in this area which I'll share in a later post.