October 2019 Recap

Newsletters

This October, I’ve continued the gift bag project I started last month. In addition to roughly book-sized baggies I’ve tried a larger size for sweaters or other clothes. My thinking is that they could also be used as off-season storage bags or organizers for travel wear, for instance, and not just gift bags.

Personally I’ve really come to like stuffing my underwear and socks into small fabric bags when packing for a trip; they’re so much easier to handle in a larger bunch. Confinement into a baggie also prevents them from being scattered all over in the luggage should the ride be bumpy.

Here are three of the small prototypes:

Gift Bag Prototypes 3 Small Ones

October is undeniably a fall month here in New England. It’s time to start putting the garden to bed, although every year I am re-astonished of how long the growing season continues. Husband and I’ve enjoyed the season. We visited a farmstand to get some bulk supplies…

Farmstand Fall Pumpkin Display

Farmstand Apple Selection

…and pickled our own cukes:

Pickles Done

Although early October was cloudy, we have also had sunny days. The bees are still out, but chipmunks seem to have retired for their winter hibernation.

October Wild Flowers

And Thursday is Halloween! Are you ready for trick-or-treaters?

September 2019 Recap

Newsletters

The biggest work-related news, perhaps, this month is that I was able to start blogging again. Also, this summer I rolled out a trial of free U.S. shipping on Etsy purchases of $35 or more. Let me know your thoughts on either!

Thanks to a huge, completely unrelated project, I didn’t do much sewing at all this summer. At the beginning of September I got back to it, and it felt really good! Among other things, I made two fabric mousepads and a large zippered document pouch as potential prototypes:

Fabric Mouse Pad Floral2

Fabric Mouse Pad Green1

Large Zippered Document Pouch Finished

Husband and I will be strenuously testing the mouse pads in the coming months. So far so good! I’ve also continued to churn out fabric gift bags in various sizes and types. I’m increasingly leaning towards using and re-using them instead of spending money on wrapping paper.

Gift Bags Wrapped

Reading was especially good this month, including this Earthsea omnibus illustrated by Charles Vess:

Current Reading The Books of Earthsea Complete Illustrated

At some point when I wasn’t looking, fall got here:

Red Maple Leaf on Grass

I hope you’ll enjoy the season! I know I will: we have candles and firewood stocked up and ready to go. 🙂

P.S. Happy Rosh Hashanah!

Round Sofa Pillows in a Rainbow Continuum

Colors, Inspiration

Browsing through one of my favorite sites, I found this eye-catching arrangement of round velvet pillows on a sofa:

DSponge Natasha Webb Round Rainbow Pillows

Natasha Webb via design*sponge.

It’s from the 1983 home of Natasha Webb and her husband Anthony. Not quite a rainbow, but perhaps rainbow-adjacent. 🙂 Love the colors, too! The huge tassels are also incredible. Speaking of tassels, the article has more photos, including a bedspread with similar large tassels. Visit design*sponge for more.

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.

New to Me: Jordan Nassar Embroideries

Arts & Crafts

I’ve been meaning to share this for a while now, but something or other was always supposedly more important or interesting. No more! 🙂

Jordan Nassar creates intricate, painting-like embroideries that mix traditional stitching with a modern approach, color scheme or subject-matter – or all of them.

The way he repeats a simple stitch en masse and creates an image with color (in contrast to varying the stitching) is fascinating:

Jordan Nassar The Arab Apocalypse

The Arab Apocalypse. Jordan Nassar.

Also intriguing are the pieces with rows of traditional symbols that, beneath an unaltered row, are reflected or refracted:

Jordan Nassar Haifa

Haifa. Jordan Nassar.

On his About page, Nassar’s work is described like this:

“Nassar’s work addresses the intersection of craft, language, history, (geo)politics, and technology. Beginning with the intricacies of identity and cultural participation, as a Palestinian- American, Nassar treats traditional craft more as medium than topic, examining subjects such as cultural heritage, ownership, exchange and absorption; emigrant nostalgia for the ‘homeland’ and its generational repercussions; geography, politics, and orientalism; symbology, codes and language systems; superstition and religious belief; post-internet visual language; and representational and geometric abstraction.”

 

I think my favorites are the monochrome pieces that remind me of traditional Finnish textiles like ryijy or käspakka. Of course it helps that his are my favorite color, blue! 🙂

Jordan Nassar Untitled 8 Pointed Stars

Untitled (8 Pointed Stars). Jordan Nassar.

For more, visit Nassar’s web page or follow him on Instagram.

Found via design*sponge.

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.

New to Me: Red Quilt Wallcovering

Colors, Room of Awesome

This photo in the June 2017 edition of Country Living magazine caught my eye:

Country Living June 2017 p27 Quilted Wallcovering

Country Living magazine June 2017, p. 27.

“Quilted wallcovering. Create a warm welcome with this unique spin on an accent wall.”

It seems to be from a bathroom or a half bath with a red wooden dresser repurposed as a vanity, plus a red and dark brown wood-frame mirror set against a coordinating red, black and white quilt. By all appearances, the quilt is permanently attached to the wall.

Wow, what a wonderful look. The mirror on top of the pieced multicolor quilt is too busy for my taste, but I really like how striking the wall is and how well the space is pulled together.

A comparable look would be relatively easy to achieve with paint and a stencil, if you don’t want to use a quilt or are worried about the longevity of textiles as a wallcovering.

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.

A Pompom Solar System

Arts & Crafts, DIY, Geek out!, Stunt Double

Love this – Lisa Tilse at We Are Scout turned our solar system into a pompom mobile:

We Are Scout Lisa Tilse Pompom Solar System

Lisa Tilse at We Are Scout.

So clever! The blue and green Earth is the best, closely followed by Saturn with its rings and the colorful Jupiter.

Visit her site for the tutorial.

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.

Now on Etsy: Canvas Pouches

Ahem Ahem!, Arts & Crafts

I listed a few canvas pouches at the Playfully Grownup Home Etsy shop.

Canvas Pouches Collage

They’re made from a variety of prints and solids. I used up remnant canvas pieces to make them.

The light green one has a really great, understated but elegant floral pattern outlined in white. I added a coordinating green and white polka dot accent for the drawstring channel.

Canvas Pouch Green White Floral BB001a

For the blue and turquoise floral, I found two good accent color matches but couldn’t decide which I preferred, so I made two versions. Problem solved! 🙂 One has a turquoise-on-turquoise polka dot print…

Canvas Pouch Blues Turquoise BB002c

…and the second a solid bright blue cotton. The latter makes a nice, strong contrast.

Canvas Pouch Blues BB002a

Both colorways have a round bottom made from solid-colored canvas – pale mustard for the green and navy blue for the blue and turquoise bags.

Find them in the Playfully Grownup Home > Carry Me section. And as always, if you have any questions please don’t hesitate to ask!

Colorful, Geometric Quilt Patterns

Arts & Crafts, Design & Designers

Oh, wow, I love the colorful, geometric quilt patterns by Elizabeth Hartman.

Elizabeth Hartman Fancy Forest and Delightful Desert Collage

Elizabeth Hartman / Oh, Fransson; collage by Eppu Jensen.

I first found them while browsing for various fox crafts, and didn’t have time to immerse myself in her other patterns until now. There are so many great ones I can’t choose a favorite, or even a few favorites. For example, there are these unicorns with colorful manes…

Elizabeth Hartman Lisa the Unicorn

Elizabeth Hartman / Oh, Fransson.

…and (erudite) hedgehogs:

Elizabeth Hartman Hazel Hedgehog II

Elizabeth Hartman / Oh, Fransson.

In addition, the patterns include swans, feathers, sloths, butterflies, owls, whales and llamas, to mention a few. And the colors in the sample quilts are gorgeous…! Even though I said it already, I’m gonna say it again: so hard to choose! 🙂

Did you find a favorite?

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.

Creativity Is: Wonder Woman – Renaissance Garb Crossover

Arts & Crafts, Geek out!, Stunt Double

Jenn at Ms. Makes mashed up Wonder Woman and Renaissance garb with brilliant results:

Instagram Msjennmakes Wonder Woman Renaissance Full

Ms. Jenn Makes on Instagram; photo by Angela (wanderings_in_wonderland).

Instagram Msjennmakes Wonder Woman Renaissance Portrait

Ms. Jenn Makes on Instagram; photo by Angela (wanderings_in_wonderland).

It’s a version of late fifteenth century Florentine dress. Jenn describes the details:

“The outfit is based on those common in 1490’s Florence, largely documented by Domenico Ghirlandaio, and consists of a camicia, side lacing gamurra (with bead and sequin embellished neckline decoration), a set of tie on sleeves (also embellished), a velvet giornea, and a #tambourbeading embellished and faux leather belt! Other accessories include a lasso holder, faux hair braid, and a diadem […]”

She also shared some details of the costume, like the beaded collar piece

Instagram Msjennmakes Wonder Woman Renaissance Neck Beading

Ms. Jenn Makes on Instagram.

…and detachable sleeves, lined, with another set of embellishments from Wonder Woman’s costume:

Instagram Msjennmakes Wonder Woman Renaissance Sleeves

Ms. Jenn Makes on Instagram.

Absolutely breathtaking! Jenn mentions using a beading technique called tambour beading, which I hadn’t heard of before. I just love learning new things from my fellow textile geeks!

Visit Jenn’s Instagram for more views and details or the Ms. Makes website for more sewing talk and tips.

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.

Reminder: Last Weekend for the Playfully Grownup Spring Sale 2018

Ahem Ahem!

Reminder: the just-because-spring-is-here sale 2018 is still on, but for a limited time!

This is your last weekend to enjoy 10% off everything at Playfully Grownup Home on Etsy – the sale ends on Monday, April 30, 2018.

2018 End of Winter Sale Cubes

This sale is as shopper-friendly as I can make it: no minimum orders, limits, codes or coupons are needed.

My Etsy shop is open throughout the weekend; Saturday and Sunday orders will ship on Mondays.