From Coaster to Patch to Carpet, the Creative Train Ride

Taking a breather from the latest pile of projects… Time to put the threads aside for an hour, get the baking supplies out. While my hands were busy stitching, I sort of sewed my way past 2nd breakfast! And now it is nearly lunch time! As usual, I got a bit sidetracked. Surprised?

That is the ride on this creative train though. Maybe it isn’t as much distraction as following a course that is set before me! One idea leads to another and before I know it, I’ve moved on from one project to the next and I am not even sure if the first one is finished! Who am I kidding, the first one is long forgotten.

A stack of pretty little coasters sit in the basket on the table. Some are already stained with coffee and those are hanging out to dry. I think in all I made 8.

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And on we go… Yesterday I did one that is a bit too thick for a little mug to sit upon, and now I am wondering, do I use it as a patch? But on what? The thought process spins me around as I go…

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What we need is a nice warm rug for the living room, to break up the grey of the carpet, and to keep our feets and butts happy this indoor season. (I refuse to use the W word yet, I know it is going to happen but I don’t want to make it real by acknowledging it just yet.)

Look at all this grey space begging for colour and layers! Next stop RUG MAKING!

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Also, note the rectangular theme happening! This part of the room is rather Boxed In! So, do I need to make a round rug, or go with the shape theme we have happening here? Or at least some uneven angles, like the way a Crazy Quilt is pieced together?! That is what I am thinking, add some heart shapes in there. Spirals of embellishment. OR do I try to make a heart shaped rug?! OOOh the possibilities are endless!

And on that note… I did a couple of these cool, thick patches yesterday.

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Definitely rug material happening here! But, does one need to go cutting up squares and pieces for this? Or can I just start layering and sewing together what I have? Like big hunks of denim layered with other heavy fabrics? (Mind you, I do have a pile of denim already in rectangles, as well as the other heavy red stuffs from those old thai pants.) I think just 2 layers would do, affixed by embellishing with other scraps and braided bits of stuff?! But stuff that can be walked upon comfortably! Am I losing you? It is ok, I haven’t gotten a clear picture yet. And I probably won’t until I am half way through my project!

I think I will do a good dig through the fabric case, pull out anything heavy of fabric that would work for a carpet project. Stack it up, start feeling and layering. pinning and embellishing. Not going to worry about size and shape as much as texture and thickness right now. And thread, what to use? I love sewing with embroidery thread, but that means I don’t have that much left. What I Do have is a tray full of thread. So I think I’m good to go!

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This creative train is on a roll, and I am the happy passenger, the Mad Captainess, in stitches! Curious as to where we are headed, and starting to visualize the potential. Which is important. If you can’t see it, can you possibly make it? Heck yes, you can! The question is just, what can you make it Into?!

Running For Strength

Today he run’s in the Terry Fox run for his Gramma Hazel. I have told him stories about her bravery and how she did some amazing things in her life, and even more so when she was living with cancer. You don’t want to break a kids heart with those stories though, do you? I tell him, Gramma Hazel did some very brave things to help women, and she gave speeches and talks about being a Survivor. She would want you to know what that word means. She had a nurses spirit and she cared for people right until she was too sick to help any more. And then she kept on helping. And so, even though she never got to kiss your sweet face, she is filling your heart and that makes me proud. Today we run for Gramma Hazel.

Rustic Coasters

Remember earlier I was thinking about starting a sewing project? Had a stash of fabric ready to be turned into coasters?

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Well, I was busy with cutting and snipping and pinning and snipping again and folding and pinning and even at stitches.

Laying in Layers

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Pinning and folding

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More pinning and folding

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And Folding and Pinning

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And Testing and Repinned Ready for Stitches

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And then there were rustic stitches and additions of lacy bits and more reusing and repurposing, and whilst I watched a couple of episodes of my current tv show fixations, a small pile of hand sewn pretties shall grow.

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And now my fingers hurt and my eye balls need some flexing. But like any repetitive activity, it calls to me until either I run out of materials, or the project is done. Or in this case, until we are over run with tiny fabric squares suitable for setting drinking glasses on.

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Also fun, keeping snippings for potential other projects? Aka hoarding. But come on, wouldn’t these work well for filling for a tiny toy? We will see… or toss out at some point in the future.

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Anyway, back to the couch for more stitching and I should probably even put the kettle on, put these pretty babies to the test.

Coaster Making

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After sitting on pinterest for about 45 minutes gathering ideas for her latest craft urges…… she went for a dig around in the fabric case that is her treasure chest. The purple suitcase is cracked across its face, one zipper is broken and there are pieces of cut up clothing bulging out of a few sides.

There are of course solutions to this. Find some place else to keep the cache of fabric. Stop hoarding old clothes. Use some of the stuff saved up! Some of this stuff has been gathering creative energy for years! Has been packed, moved and contemplated far too many times. It is high time to put it to new use.

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On today’s creative menu; coasters. Little fabric coasters for under our mugs. Because the 4 that we have around are never enough. Not when we neglect and abandon drinks all around the apartment the way we do. And they are showing some serious wear. Not that our furniture is so fancy that it needs protecting, but coasters have been part of my life for many a decade, and it just doesn’t seem right to set a glass right on a surface.

There are many great ideas on pinterest, but like any recipe, I seek inspiration and tips, not step by step direction. This is in part because no matter how well I follow directions, what I produce will never look like the intended original product. And so I have learned to give my creativity the allowance to flow as she feels fit. And because the materials I have around are never the same as the suggestions, at the moment of searching. And because I am an impulsive person, who knows what she wants to do and how. But sometimes needs a bit of creative inspiration first. I don’t want to wait until I can go shop for or stir up the necessary items. I like to improvise. And get to it… (I Do so badly want to try some of the things that I have saved to craft and creativity boards, but that is why I love the site so much. It is a great place to hoard ideas.)

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Which is why there is, of course, now yet another pile of ‘fabric with potential’ on my desk, and a new batch of ideas brewing.

Bits left over from sweater, jeans and a couple of skirts, a heart or two from a quilt gifted years ago, oh, and a piece of cushion cover!

I ‘made’ some coasters a while back, out of felted wool left over from a sweater bag I made for SisterDear. This time around I want to put more intent into it.

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Basically I had just cut squares out of what was left of a huge old sweater, and that was that. (I sure wish I had a picture of that bag to show you! It was Fabulous! And sentimental, this was a sweater my sister and I shared back and forth for years, until it really was unwearable. So now we have special pieces of it, and it lives a while longer yet in our lives.)

I will say that felted raw wool is a bit sticky when it comes to use as coaster. It is lovely and thick and will protect a surface, but if the mug is too hot, the coaster will most likely stick to the bottom of it. Just a note… I still love them but I want something new for the kitchen table, and for my many work spaces. Because if those mugs are going to be sat and most likely neglected (there is 1/3 a mug of tepid monks blend tea in front of me right now), they might as well sit on something pretty!

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So here is what I will be working with. I am thinking a couple of layers of heavy fabric in rectangle, layered and bound by some very thick, visible stitches. Rustic. And since I have these lovely pieces of things left over from other projects, I will try to incorporate them into the project. We will see how they turn out!

Hurried Snack Means No Snack At All

Note to self, when in a hurry and grabbing a quick snack from the fridge for after work later, do make sure one is actually grabbing the last of the pumpkin bars that you were sure were wrapped in parchment paper, but which I am pretty sure you finished last week.
Because when you are waiting for a bus, and feeling a bit snacky, pulling out a baggie of raw Veggie GroundRound is not going to serve you well. (At least you can be thankful that you are no longer buying ground beef, and that wasn’t what you carried around in your satchel all afternoon…)

Skirt, The Idea

When I am not trudging between home and school, drying tears, or baking muffins, I am often cutting up old clothes and trying to piece them together into new clothes.

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Imagine if I actually just went to the store and bought fabric? But where would the recycling or fun be in that?!

There is never a time when I do not have at least one skirt made of old pants. And never a time when I am not without ideas. Or piles of clothes ready to be reused. In fact the first thing I think when people give me clothes is usually OOOOH What I Could Make Out Of These!

Pants beware! Shirts cower! Sleeves kind of rejoice, cause they get all kinds of fun on legs and coffee mugs… more than they do on arms I bet 😉

This week I am busy blending old denim with older shirts,

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and making cute new skirts that I will actually wear.

Maybe even in public. Aka the grocery store?

Hmmm, well perhaps next I will work on my social life!

One at a time folks, One at a Time!