Friday, January 31, 2014

A Homemade Gift - Audrey Style

Shortly after Christmas, I snapped this shot of our eldest.

I would say she is "in her element" here.

She enjoys anything related to the iconic actress Audrey Hepburn. She relishes the gifts she received this year with an Audrey theme: a biography, costume accessories, and this bag that I made for her.

A few years ago I chose to make one gift for the four members of my family for Christmas. Sometimes the gift ideas are a no-brainer and a plan to create them unfolds quickly.

This one took some time to come together.

Originally I hoped to make one of these - an Amy Butler gumdrop pillow.

I will probably tackle one of these in the future.  but I knew it would be too much to dig into this year. Also, as I learned from making Ben's gift, it is difficult to hide a large homemade gift in our small house. The pillow might have been discovered early on ruining the surprise on Christmas morning. carries specialty fabrics and a few fun Audrey Hepburn ones as seen here.  I was ecstatic to find the one below and chose the $5 test swatch. I had a few ideas for this - frame it for a wall hanging, use it to grace the cover of a journal....

But I settled on using the swatch for a pocket on a tote bag.
The tote bag idea came to me on a shopping trip to IKEA.

I was wandering through the market place and found a display with black striped pillow covers. The idea of making one into a bag just came to me. I bought two pillow covers. I disassembled one to make the straps and to line the pocket for the exterior.

I was grateful for the zipper already installed. My sewing skills haven't reached the level of zipper installation yet.  Pulling it altogether was a bit tricky, but the end product fit what I had imagined in the first place.

I think it is perfect for this young woman.
Makes her seem sophisticated. And stylish. And grown-up. Wow.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

One Half Block

They only have to walk one half block to the bus stop to get to school.

Today was one of those picturesque walks.

It's a short journey, and a lovely one this morning.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

The Beauty Shelf

Back at it. Blogging.

Here goes.

In my days as a youth we rejoiced at the rare "snow day" when school was called off. With multiple new inches of snow came another wave of fun - carving out snow forts in the huge drifts, sliding off the neighbor's garage roof, making deep snow angels and on and on....

This winter my girls have the unusual experience of several days of "free" days due to extreme cold.

That translates into playing inside, reading inside, having fun with mom inside, spending money inside. A lot of inside. Actually, only inside.

Time to get creative.

Yesterday we took the day to clean the room, rearrange furniture, and create a "beauty shelf". It all started with a request to bunk their beds. It ended with less clutter, more function, and a cute room more fit for pre-teen girls.

We wanted to eliminate unwanted and unused items, make the space feel more open, comfortable, and functional. To do this, we needed an extra floor lamp, a shelf (to add to the two we already had) and a rug. This meant making a trip to IKEA. I discovered that it is possible to cruise through IKEA in less than an hour. We were there and back again in 50 minutes. Yes!

One addition to the room is what I call "the beauty shelf". I just threw the name out there. Izzy laughed. The name stuck.

Where before they kept brushes, glasses, and accessories in multiple locations and without any order, they now have one space designated for these items and one spot for getting ready in the morning.

This morning after the girls left for school, I added these four hooks.

They hold hair binders, head bands, rainbow loom bracelets and beaded bracelets.

The rings keep accessories visible and organized. I firmly believe that what can't be seen well, does not get used. Stuffed in a drawer or strewn across their dresser top, these were hidden and not easily seen. I think this solution will help keep their room a bit more tidy and their time in getting ready in the morning more efficient.

The shelf sits between their individual shelves which hold their reading lamps, books, and meaningful knickknacks.

I think they will be happy with the addition of accessories on the wall.

Maybe coming home to this new element will help with the adjustment of actually being back in school.

P.S. The hooks are from Target; came in a set of six. I purchased the rings as a set many years ago - can't remember where they are from.

P.S. #2.  It's good to be back. Blogging.