Shoreline Boatneck

Since the holidays, I have been having a tough time focusing on a project from start to finish (I’d like us not to discuss how many WIPs are hanging in the closet of my sewing room right now). When I saw the call for testers for a re-release of the Shoreline Boatneck, I jumped on it! I knew the accountability [deadline] of testing a pattern would help my sew’jo return {and yippee – it’s back!}.

I’ve tested for Blank Slate Patterns before and I can’t say enough great things about 1) the quality of the pattern designs [& instructions] and 2) how well-run the testing process is!

I’ve been a member of the Blank Slate Patterns group on Facebook for a while so I’ve seen how versatile this pattern is. I knew it would be a great one to add to my stash.

shoreline-boatneck-tracing

Does anyone else obsessively trace their patterns with freezer paper? After reading Addie’s post about pin-free cutting, I can’t stop.

Fabric

I found some denim rayon at my local JoAnn’s to use for testing the Shoreline Boatneck with woven material (the pattern can be made in woven or knit – I told you it was versatile!). It is¬†so very soft. I wanted material that would 1) have a good drape and 2) be a versatile color so I could wear it often ūüėČ

Despite being soft and drapey, the fabric was actually really easy to sew!

shoreline-boatneck-sewing

Length

The original Shoreline Boatneck pattern had the option of being a top or a dress. Originally I was going to make the dress version, but when the option to make a tunic came up, I volunteered! The dress version looks a little longer than would be flattering on my short frame (I’m only 5’1″ for reference) so I knew a tunic would be ideal. I shortened the pattern from the dress hemline by 8 inches to make the tunic (not from the lengthen/shorten line which actually sounds intriguing after someone pointed out that would make the bottom more flowy).

The tunic falls just above my knees so it’s pretty much a dress on me ūüėČ

shoreline-2

Fit

I made a size small based on my bust measurements and it fit perfect on the first sew! The pattern is not a fitted design (no bust darts) so there is some flexibility. I like that it’s a little loose but not in a way that looks like I’m wearing a muu-muu {but let’s be honest: This tunic is so comfortable it basically feels like pajamas}.

Because I was testing, I did not make any alterations or modifications to the fit. Even after testing, I still wouldn’t make any adjustments – it fits perfectly!

shoreline-4

Future Plans {& Inspiration}

There are so many ideas for hacking. Four hacks are included with the re-release!

Melissa has made several variations including the 3 below. Y’all know my love for a dress with pockets AND a cinched waist so you bet the middle one is on.my.list.!

shoreline-hack-ideas

Button-back hack instructions HERE | Details of the middle dress HERE | Hack instructions for the dress on the right HERE

There is something about this pattern – the top and the the dress – that look so perfect with plaids / checkers. I fell for the big gingham print version that Melissa made. I fell even harder when she mentioned it didn’t require a zipper {y’all know my love for slip-on/no-closure dresses!} – you can read more about this hack at the end of this post. The waist & bodice remind me of the Fen Dress a bit but without darts + side-seam pockets, perhaps it’ll be a faster sew!

mellysews-shoreline-dress

Y’all know my love of upcycling. A fellow member of the testing group posted a hack that I fell for! Ellen used a men’s button down shirt to make a Shoreline top and even kept the original hem.

My grandfather passed away unexpectedly a few weeks ago. I’m hoping to get my hands on a few of his shirts to upcycle for my sister {who’s due with my nephew¬†any.moment.now!} and I.

ellens-shoreline

Follow Ellen on Instagram for sewing inspiration: @ellen.mchugh

I also like the color-block version that Abbey of Sew Charleston made. Her top looks straight off the RTW rack (in the best way).

abbeys-shoreline

Read all about Abbey’s color-blocked Shoreline Boatneck top HERE

Browse the #ShorelineBoatneck hashtag on Instagram to see even more beautiful versions!

Conclusion: It’s a Wardrobe Staple!

This tunic has been on regular rotation since I finished it. For the most comfortable outfit ever, I’ve been pairing it with my frumpiest [coziest] sweater, leggings, moccasins and my favorite scarf {crocheted by my super talented boss}.

shoreline-with-sweater

Can we pretend this counts as professional wear? PLEASE!

Purchase your own Shoreline Boatneck pattern here. Then come back & share your version with me!

My most worn handmade garments

If you set a resolution for 2017 to build/expand your handmade wardrobe, this list is for you!

With almost 3 years (!!) of sewing garments under my belt, I thought it would be a good time to reflect on my most-worn, most-loved patterns. I have learned a lot along this journey. While some garments were fun to construct [or maybe not so fun], they may not have turned out to be as loved in a day-to-day way.

My goal with this list is to provide you a few pattern recommendations that will surely be worth your time!

handmade-wardrobe

Disclaimer: The list is purely subjective and recalled from memory; not from actual daily tallies of use [but wouldn’t that be a fun experiment?!].

Being that I have avoided adding closures of any kind to a garment thus far {no zippers, no buttons, no problem!}, I would say that all of these patterns are beginner-friendly.

beautiful-things

Along this journey to build my handmade wardrobe, I have discovered “my style.” It’s eclectic {code word for: comfortably weird}.

My style moves on a continuum between dressing like a tween to dressing like a 90-year-old. To be honest: it’s not much a continuum – I mostly cling to one end or the other without much that fits in between. But I think that’s the beauty of sewing your own clothes: You have the freedom to choose¬†exactly how you want your garment¬†to look. You want a dress to match your dachshund? Girl Charlee’s got you covered. Need bright green leggings to make spin class more appealing? Imagine Gnats has you covered.

You’ll see both extremes of my style throughout the list below. I can’t promise¬†my style is¬†in style, but it’s¬†mine. And I’m embracing it ūüôā

iris-apfel

Handmade Garments I wore most in 2016

TRANSITION PIECES

Below are pieces that easily transitioned from season to season [aka: just-add-leggings]. 

Sew Caroline’s Out and About Dress | pattern

out-and-about-dress

The 3 Out & About Dresses I’ve made so far – from L to R: version 3, 1, and 2.

This was the very first pattern I sewed {first dress ever} and it has remained my very favorite! I even turned it into a shirt once.

The dress transitions perfectly to fall with a few layers – just add leggings, boots, a sweater and your favorite scarf!

out-and-about-dress-2

During the cooler weather, I wear my long-sleeved version almost every week.

I just ordered some dark gray ponte de roma fabric from imagine gnats that I’m hoping to turn into my 4th Out & About Dress – stay tuned!

{Read all about version 1 & 2 here and version 3 here.}

Sew Caroline’s Tank Dress | pattern

tank-dress-2

When this pattern was first released, I didn’t think I’d jump on that bandwagon. I thought the hemline was “too trendy” {I’ve already confessed my inner 90-year-old}, BUT I love it. It’s actually¬†really easy to construct since it can be made with a woven [non-stretchy] fabric.

My second version [pictured here] is my most-worn¬†because: I raised the elastic casing on the back of the dress about 2 inches [I think]. I’m petite which often requires altering (usually raising the waistline in dresses works for me). In my first version {mentioned in this post}, I was having some bunching in the back above the elastic because it was sliding up to my waist. It was such a simple alteration that completely changed the comfort and fit of the dress for me.

I wear this dress to work with a simple black cardigan and platforms in the summer and transition to fall/winter by adding leggings and boots. I love the versatility of the dress – easy to layer from season to season.

Fancy Tiger Craft’s Fen Dress

fen-dress

My first version of the Fen Dress [pictured here] is my favorite.

{Read all about both of my Fen Dresses in this post and see my 1st Fen Dress in action in this post.}

Shwin Designs’ Day Tripper Top¬†| pattern

day-tripper-top

I got this pattern¬†a long time ago as part of the Pattern Anthology “Just Add Jeans” collection. Embarrassingly, it’s the only pattern I’ve sewn from the collection so far.

For my version, I accidentally omitted the shoulder tabs and waist band which shortened the top (perfect length for petite frame FYI).

{Read all about my Day Tripper Top in this post and see it in action here, here and here on Thanksgiving.}

 

SUMMER

Sew Caroline’s Magnolia Shorts | pattern

magnolia-shorts

These shorts got some serious wear this summer. In past summers I have¬†lived in my black Patagonia elastic waist shorts. The fabric is great for the heat (light and quick-drying/nearly-sweat-proof). While I¬†love them¬†so¬†much, they make me look like a soccer mom (but not the kind that dresses up to sit on the sidelines. I’m the soccer mom wearing big sunglasses trying to hide the fact that she’s napping in her bag¬†chair).

The Magnolia Shorts helped my summer wardrobe appear slightly more pulled together. I used a crepe fabric that had been donated to my stash from someone’s attic. The fabric was¬†perfect for the shorts – drapey and breezy. It made my version morph into a skirt visually {thus, taking my wardrobe up 10 notches}.

{Read all about my Magnolia shorts in this post and see them in action in this post and here on Instagram.}

*PS: If you’re looking for shorts with pockets, check out the Parkside Shorts {read all about mine here}! I made 2 pairs – you can see the second pair in action at the bottom of¬†this post.

My Refashioned Housedress

housedress_before after

This was one of the quickest, easiest projects so far. It was an easy-breezy hack-and-hem into the most comfortable dress ever saved from a landfill.

{Read all about the project¬†in this post. I’m feeling inspired for more refashions – hopefully I’ll find some fun ones for 2017!}

 

WINTER

Blank Slate Pattern’s Tulip Top | pattern

leopard tulip top

I found 2 versions of the Tulip Top particularly inspiring: Sewbon {I love the textured knit and really like how she lengthened it and omitted the sleeve cuffs & neckband for a whole new look} & Sew Charleston {I loved the short-sleeve hack – we’re both in the always-hot-state-of-SC so short-sleeves get a lot of wear}.¬†I actually copied Sew Charleston’s short-sleeved hack in¬†this version, but unfortunately this version hasn’t been worn as much as it should be.

Fun note about the Tulip Top – it was just re-released with a cross-over back option.

Also: I was recently shopping for my adorably preggo sister at Motherhood Maternity and saw a nursing top (similar) that made me think this pattern might be a fun modification for maternity (cross-over in the back) and nursing (cross-over in the front). I’d love to say I’m going to make one for my sister, but my sewing list is so long my nephew might be walking by then!

{Read more about my leopard print Tulip Top in this post.}

I hope this post has inspired you and given you fresh ideas to build your handmade wardrobe. I’d love to hear what’s on your “to make” list for 2017 – share in the comments below!

What I’m Lovin’ in December

The Hubs’ family from England came to visit for 3 weeks around Thanksgiving which is my excuse for missing¬†what I’m lovin’ in November – but I do apologize! Hopefully this fun list will make up for it!

december

1. Challenging myself

While I have made it nearly 3 years without sewing a garment that required closures, I’m working hard to challenge myself to build my skill set to avoid stagnation {but isn’t stagnation so comfortable sometimes?!}

I’m currently working on a Darling Ranges dress that [obviously] includes a button closure. It’s cut and partially sewn. I’m hoping to finish it up in the last few days of my Winter Break so stay tuned!

darling-ranges

2. Knitting

Thanks to my friend Shanika for the support and encouragement (and many tips), I am making some progress on the shawl kit I purchased recently from an amazing local yarn shop, Copious Fibers.

first-color

3. Ugly Sweater Block

I ran across this paper-pieced pattern on Instagram and fell.in.love.! I found some hot pink cat fabric (the cats are wearing gold bow ties which screamed “pick me!”) in the remnant bin at JoAnn’s that I knew would make the purrrfect “Crazy Cat Lady Ugly Sweater Block.”

sweater-block

I turned it into a zip pouch {see it here} for my quilt guild’s annual holiday party Dirty Santa swap.

If you’re looking for some entertainment, browse the #UglySweaterBlock hashtag on Instagram to see all of the blocks others made – they’re hilarious!

4. This roll-up changing pad (DIY)

baby-mat-1

The mat is super-duper easy to sew and apparently it’s quite useful! I found the tutorial in a post full of practical baby shower gifts HERE via Sew in Love.

I made this gift last minute for the Hubs’ coworker so I used scrap quilting cotton that a friend’s mom donated to my stash and some double fold elastic I had on hand. I’m always excited when I can make a dent in my stash to create something handy.

baby-mat-2

5. Crafty Feast

As always, my sister and I had such a blast at Crafty Feast! It’s our favorite holiday market. We love the chance to support local makers and stock up on holiday gifts.

6. Self-Created Podcast

podcast

My friend Shanika launched a podcast with her friend Jernell and I am¬†loving listening in on their conversations! They really balance each other and¬†share some great tips {their Skin Care Episode has me wondering I haven’t invested in a good eye cream yet…}

As I finish this post, I’m launching Episode 3 so I can hear all their tips for self-care just in time for the new year!

You can find all of the Self-Created Podcast episodes HERE on SoundCloud & follow them on Instagram & Facebook for sneak peeks.

7. Resolutions

I’m not really great about setting [or sticking to] resolutions, but here’s one I think I will attempt to embrace ūüėČ

long-walks

What are some of your resolutions for 2017? I’d love to hear them!

Sewing Revelations

With the new year fast approaching, I’m still bouncing around resolutions. Last year my goal was to continue to build my handmade wardrobe which I feel like I did a pretty good job of. Next year I would like to do the same but¬†with intention. I want to be more focused and intentional about what I’m making. I want to waste less (time to bust my stash!) and focus more on making timeless pieces that better reflect¬†my style.

I have found quite a bit of inspiration around the blogosphere lately which has led to a few personal “sewing revelations” that I wanted to share…

Revelations on not sewing everything

Crab and Bee recently posted about not sewing everything which really ignited some personal reflection.

crab-bee

Sometimes I feel crippled by my “to sew” list. The post¬†sparked a reminder to myself that sewing is something that I¬†enjoy and if I’m feeling pressured or frustrated with a project, perhaps I should re-evaluate¬†why I’m making it. If it’s not something I enjoy sewing [maybe the material is hard to work with, the pattern is too difficult, or it’s something that someone else wanted¬†but not something I wanted to make], I don’t need to pressure myself into making it.

Revelations on creating with intention

Over the past few years of sewing garments I have learned a lot. It has taken me quite a while to reign in my focus. Building a handmade wardrobe¬†doesn’t mean you are immune to being wasteful or unintentional. We are just as vulnerable to sewing clothes that are ill-fitting, not our true style, or focusing too much on what’s “trendy” and not enough on what is¬†our style. {I found this post particularly enlightening about how to stop sewing “unworns.”}

I have been trying very hard to be more intentional with planning garments to make with a focus of styles I know I will wear in more timeless fabric (i.e. more neutral, versatile prints and solids).

simplicity-quote

Revelations on purchasing something I¬†“could” make myself

When purchasing something, I try to support local businesses and makers or source it second-hand for an environmentally-friendly option. Yes, I’m an Amazon Prime member, and yes – I occasionally get sucked into the Target spiral, and that’s okay too.

Sometimes the best option is to choose what will create the lowest level of stress.

For me, sewing is a stress reliever. It’s the place for me to dump my creative energy. As someone who struggles with anxiety and depression, an outlet like sewing is important for me to protect.

Over the past year or so, I have tried to step back from feeling the pressure to sew for others {to my fellow seamstresses out there: how do you handle this?}. I often get frustrated with expectations of others that I will sew things for them {not every gift I give has to be handmade..} and then get even more frustrated when I find myself volunteering {I have a bad habit of spreading myself thin} and even more frustrated with the guilt I often feel for not sewing something for someone that I wanted to {hello, anxiety}.

Purchasing a thoughtful gift can be just as special. Plus, it can be an opportunity to support a fellow maker!

Revelations of repairing old clothes

“…old is better than new, and when it breaks, keep fixing it.” – 91 year old, Eric.

worn-wear

{Click the image to read the full story}

I ran across the best post via Worn Wear on Instagram. Crab & Bee mentioned them which sent me into stalking browsing their feed. Equally inspiring are the repairs shared by Santa Cruz Gear Repair on Instagram.

I absolutely¬†loved the post about Eric (above). He was gifted a handmade jacket which he then had modified to a vest that he has worn daily. Perhaps after all the work one puts into sewing a jacket, having the recipient modify it would be sad, BUT if it makes the piece something they can enjoy the heck out of, it’s so worth it! ‚̧

My take-away: I need to love my current wardrobe more. I should be repairing and investing in long-lasting pieces [handmade or otherwise]. I’ve never been big on “trendy” clothing {I’m always out-of-style} and have always appreciated quality {sewing has further pushed me into being a clothing-quality-snob now that I understand construction} so I have a good platform to start.

Revelations and inspiration for Refashioning

I tend to focus more on making-from-scratch and occasionally reusing/recycling material¬†{like my Dad’s shorts for these baby shoes, a handkerchief for this zip pouch}, but I don’t find myself altering or repairing clothing as often as I wish I did.

My sister gifted me DIY Wardrobe Makeovers: Alter, Refresh & Refashion Your Clothes. She didn’t know I’d been following Suzannah’s blog, Create/Enjoy, for a few months now and loving it.

book

I have been known to refashion in the past {like this housedress and this skirt}, but it’s been a while since I have taken a look at my closet [or the thrift store] through the lens of planning a refashion.

I want to focus more on altering clothes I already have [handmade and RTW] so that they become pieces I want to and will wear more often.

Revelations on sewing as therapy

A few years ago when I was making jewelry and sewing bags for my shop, I realized creating had transitioned from being an enjoyable activity to share with those I love to what felt like a never-ending-cycle of trying to “stock inventory” for customers who were beginning to become more and more sparse.

My day job was feeding the fuel (financially) for my shop. Since my shop was only a side-hustle and never became a dependent income, I had the luxury of walking away before my creative joy was depleted.

I began transitioning to creating for myself with a focus on patterns and projects that excited me.

Since then, sewing has become so much more than¬†just sewing for me. It is something that I retreat to in times of stress and something I “reward” myself with in times of celebration. Through my sewing journey I have not only learned so many skills, I have also learned so much about myself.

creativity

Conclusion

I’m not perfect. I don’t have the skill set [or the time] to make everything…and that’s okay! If I can make intentional purchases and use those to support my fellow makers as often as possible, that’s wonderful.

At the end of the day, the focus should be on¬†joy. Creating should energize and inspire you. It’s important to show¬†grace to¬†yourself – it’s okay to say no to or walk away from a project that will not or is not bringing you joy. This is all easier said than done, but I will be doing my best to put it into practice in 2017 ūüôā

Gift Guide 2016: Local Makers

Whether you are short on time or your creative juices just aren’t flowing fast enough to DIY-all-the-gifts, this list is for you!

holiday-gift-guide-1

{Background image credit: Jocie Pots – ceramic goods made in Greenville, SC}

With the holidays fast approaching, I knew I wanted to share some gift ideas from handmade businesses I have discovered and love supporting. When my friend Shanika came to me with the idea I was all.in.! Shanika shares my passion for supporting fellow mover, makers, and shakers Рshe and I run Cola Indie Makers together. Keep an eye on her blog for more holiday gift ideas featuring handmade shops she loves!

As you may know by now, I feel very strongly about supporting local businesses {specifically handmade¬†businesses}¬†as often as possible. I could go on and on about this for days, but this quote really sums up what I’m getting at…

buy-handmade

When at all possible, buy local / buy handmade / buy from a friend …

In the spirit of staying organized {and hopefully saving you time if you reference this later}, I’ve split the list up by group and highlighted gifts for certain people on your list. I hope it helps!

Less of a disclaimer and more of a point of clarity: I have not been provided anything in exchange for featuring the shops below and I do not receive anything if you purchase the item(s) using the link(s) provided. Unless otherwise noted, all of the shops mentioned were discovered at local craft fairs or events (in the Southeast U.S.). Some I have purchased from and others I simply lusted after. I have seen and felt the quality of the goods in person and recommend them with confidence. 

Happy handmade shopping!

For the GENTLEMEN on your list

1. For the man who needs a leather belt in his grown-up wardrobe | buy it

maycomb belt

Photo credit: Maycomb Mercantile – click the image to shop the item shown.

In addition to the fact that this belt will surely last forever, you can add a personalized message to remind your main man how much he means to you.

2. For the man who needs decor in his Man Cave | buy it

true cotton salmon print

Photo credit: True Cotton – click the image to shop the item shown.

If your guy is more into camping, this print would be perfect.

Just head over to your local thrift store to look for a rustic wood frame.

3. For the man who likes a little heat on his meat | buy it

hot sauce 2

Photo credit: Red Clay Hot Sauce – click the image to shop the item shown.

I bought some of this hot sauce for my Hubs at Made South and he was a big fan!

“It is the only hot sauce born in southern bourbon barrels and cold-pressed to retain subtle and firm flavors.” – source.

4. For the man who likes to travel [or get ready at the gym] | buy it

sansmaps

Photo credit: Sans Map Рclick the image to shop the item shown.

This Dopp kit is made from repurposed Pendleton wool (so cool!).

You can hear more about our discovery of Sans Map in this post – my sister loved my Sans Map bag so much she ordered her own.

5. For your grandpa who may use this mug for whiskey rather than coffee | buy it

thrifted-sisters

Photo credit: Thrifted Sisters – click the image to shop the item shown.

Grandpas sure are hard to buy for. Thrifted Sisters just made your life oh-so-easy by making this vintage “Grandfather” mug available just in time for the holidays.

Pro tip: Follow Thrifted Sisters on Instagram for hot-off-the-thrift-store-floor items. They find the coolest stuff.

6. For Mr. Money Bags himself | buy it

miss-ashley

Photo credit: Miss Ashley Jewelry – click the image to shop the item shown.

Get him a personalized money clip from Miss Ashley Jewelry.

For the LADIES on your list

1. For your perfectly Southern Grandma | buy it

true cotton porches print

Photo credit: True Cotton – click the image to shop the item shown.

Grandmas are so hard to buy for – they have¬†everything! Just pick up a lovely frame for the print and you’ll be all set.

2. To help your Grandma keep her purse trinkets organized | buy it

trishstitched

Photo credit: Trish Stitched – click the image to shop the item shown.

Fun fact: Her gift card holders perfectly fit 3 essential oil rollers or 2 essential oil bottles {see proof in this post}

Disclaimer: I did not discover Trish Stitched at a local market. However, I have been following her blog for quite a while and won a giveaway where I received 2 pouches she made Рyou can read more about those in this post. The quality is great РTrish is very talented!

3. For the gal who loves nothing more than breathing the mountain air | buy it

january-jewelry

Photo Credit: January Jewelry – click the image to shop the item shown.

Remind her of her favorite vacation spot with this lovely necklace from January Jewelry.

4. For the free spirited, stylish gal on your list | buy it

sebastian-harper

Photo credit: Sebastian Harper – click the image to shop the item shown.

The colors in this vest make my eyes melt into hearts! Shanika [of Sebastian Harper] uses all natural dyes – like indigo and madder root for this one – to make her knit and sewn goodies even more one-of-a-kind.

I mean…look how chic¬†the vest looks in use!

sebastian-harper-2

(This isn’t¬†the exact same vest [it’s actually this one], but I HAD to show you how sexy it looked on!)

PS: I have knit ear warmers from Shanika that I purchased a few years ago and wore all over England when we visited in December 2014 {documented here, here & here} which is proof 1) it was so warm and cozy and 2) well-made [after all the travel, the head band is still in perfect condition!].

For the LITTLE ONES on your list

1. Because a bonnet with ears is a necessity | buy it

owlette

Photo credit: Owlette – click the image to shop the item shown.

…and why not get a matching bib while you’re at it? You can mix-and-match/choose your own pair here.

2.¬†Because babies can’t decorate their own rooms | buy it

little-red-flag

Photo credit: Little Red Flag Рclick the image to shop the item shown.

The best part about these safari prints is that you can print them yourself! So no one has to know that you forgot to buy the baby something ūüėČ

I have 2 prints from Little Red Flag in my living room: a gold foil print of South Carolina (my home state) and one of Georgia (the Hubs’ home state).

3. Because some people only have FURRY little ones | buy it

sup-dog

Photo credit: Sup-Dog – click the image to shop the item shown.

Don’t forget to treat your fur babies too! Sup-Dog makes¬†the best collars. It’s all my three pups wear (mostly because they don’t have a choice, but even if they did I’m¬†sure they’d choose Sup-Dog collars!).

For EVERYONE ELSE on your list

1. For your Friends who just bought their first house | buy it

key fob 2

Photo credit: @maycombmercantile on Instagram

A¬†pair of these custom key fobs from Maycomb Mercantile with¬†“HOME” stamped on them would be perfect.

2. For your Friend who loves to Travel | buy it

maycomb tags

Photo credit: Maycomb Mercantile – click the image to shop the item shown.

Get a tag he/she will love and truly appreciate in those moments of frantically searching the conveyor belt for a sign that this generic red bag is theirs {Been there. Literally. In London. Thankfully we found a lacrosse ball in the bag verifying our possession. #awkward}.

3. For your Friend who loves Essential Oils | buy it

essential oil case

Photo Credit: Cotton and Cursive – click the image to shop the item shown.

This essential oils case from Cotton and Cursive is perfect for travel or carrying essentials oils on-the-go.

4. For the hostess with the mostest

The Hippy Do-Da Creations shop on Etsy is closed until December 4th for local shows, but you can follow along on Instagram and Facebook until then.

I have a really fun stamped bracelet from Chris that says: “wake up. kick ass. sleep. repeat.” – I love it!

5. For your friend with sensitive skin | buy it

carolina-soap-works

Photo credit: Carolina Soap Works – click the image to shop the item shown.

Carolina Soap Works sells Authentic African Black Soap which is supposed to be amazing for sensitive skin. Shanika is a big fan of it. I also have a friend who bought it for her sister who has rosacea.

CSW also carries a wide variety of Goats Milk Soap which I love. My favorite scent: Rosemary Mint.

You can also find Carolina Soap Works on Amazon (and use your Prime account for 2-day shipping)!

6. For your friend who truly believes breakfast is the most important meal of the day | buy it

kyle-smith

Photo credit: Kyle Smith Pottery – click the image to shop the item shown.

These egg cookers from Kyle Smith Pottery are supposed to be all the rage. You can cook the perfect omelet in 1 minute – count me in!

I have several pieces from Kyle and love to gift them – they make great housewarming gifts. He also made my friend Caroline’s set of dishes for “everyday wear” for her wedding (see one of the bowls in this post).

More gift ideas

Here are a few recaps from markets I’ve attended that are packed full of handmade gift ideas and shops I discovered while there…

If you’re planning to DIY some holiday gifts, check out my Handmade Holiday Gift Ideas post from last year¬†and my 2014 Handmade for the Holidays Blog Hop – find links to all of the blog posts from the 2014 “hop” in my recap here.

So remember this as you are shopping this holiday season…

small-biz

I hope this list has inspired you! I would love love love to hear who your favorite handmade shops are! Leave a link to their shop in the comments below РI love discovering new artists and shops to support.

Happy holidays ‚̧

 

What I’m Lovin’ in October

My very favorite month is coming to a close, but no hard¬†feelings – we’re just closer to my favorite holiday: Christmas!

Keep reading for the short list of what I’ve been lovin’ this month…

october

1.¬†This beautiful reminder…

october

What colors have you revealed this month?

2. Pumpkin Cheesecake Ice Cream at Sweet Cream Company

Part of me didn’t want to share this in fear that they would run out of this delicious treat. My Mom, sister, both Hubses and I visited Sweet Cream after my birthday dinner {at my very favorite taco place, Cantina 76} to discover that they had Pumpkin Cheesecake ice cream! It was the best thing I’ve tasted since the pumpkin spice cookies Kathy brought to our last sew-in.

ice-cream

L to R: Pumpkin Cheesecake, Coffee, and Black Sesame Ginger

Sweet Cream is a locally owned ice cream shop with the most¬†interesting flavors imaginable.¬†You can follow them on Instagram so you’re up-to-date on their latest flavors, but be warned: you will experience mouth-watering and serious cravings.

If you’re not local to Columbia, SC – they ship! But you should still experience the sweet shop in person so add the Sweet Cream Company to your “must try” list when you visit ūüėČ

3. Progress on my <> Quilt

Our office was closed for a few days as Hurricane Matthew approached and I got a serious craving to start a quilt {it’s hard to predict when it’s going to hit! ūüėČ }

quilt-1

I dusted off my Handmade Style book {let’s be honest: there’s no dust on that book. It’s in constant rotation in my sewing room!} and picked out the <> Quilt. It’s made from big blocks which I thought would be a great idea so it would come together quickly {patience is not a virtue I have}.

I’m making it entirely from fabric I have on-hand so each set of “<>” will be different {you can peak at the pair for the middle row here}.

quilt

First set of <> down, 2 more to go!

4. Wrapping bird nest necklaces

It’s been a while since I’ve made a batch of the bird nest necklaces…I’d forgotten how soothing wire wrapping can be!

necklaces

I used to make the nests all the time {so often I sold my extras at the Soda City market for a while} until I started sewing heavily and got too exhausted from pedaling my handmade goods {shout-out to all my handmade hustlers out there: selling your goods is¬†no.joke. – it’s far more stressful than most realize}.

A few weeks ago I got a request that energized me. An organization that is near and dear to my heart recently re-branded and their new logo is a nest. Thus, the bird nest necklaces were a great accessory for their team!

If you have mama birds on your holiday list and are in need of a necklace, let me know – I’d be happy to chat with you about a custom order.

5. Maker Style Podcast

I love listening to podcasts all.the.time – while I sew, while I cook, while I eat my lunch

I’ve shared a few of my favorites before, but the Maker Style podcast is my favorite as of late!

maker-style-podcast

{Click the image to read all the details about the podcast via The Wild Stich}

I discovered this podcast when Indie Sew posted about Allie’s interview on Instagram. I immediately found the Maker Style podcast in iTunes and started listening.

The interviews are great! I really appreciate that Rachel posts all the details in the show notes. If you hear about a new pattern you haven’t heard of yet or want to learn more about the sewing genius she’s interviewing, you can find it all linked on the website.

6. Blueberry Mascarpone French Toast at Drip on Main

This post is turning out to be more like #ConfessionsOfAFatKid…

french-toast

It’s no secret that I¬†love Drip. Last weekend the Hubs and I wandered in for a quiet Sunday brunch to discover that the Blueberry Mascarpone French Toast was still on the menu. DELISH! But hurry in because the menu is changing soon {although I have yet to be let down by any of their menu changes}

7. Palmetto MQG Quilt Block Challenge

We just wrapped up Month #2 of the block challenge for the Palmetto Modern Quilter’s Guild. This month we made Plus blocks.

plus-block

See last month’s block in this post.

8.¬†It’s my birthday month!

Hurricane Matthew’s approach caused our district to be shut down for 3 days prior to¬†my birthday. He totally rained on my parade/plan to take my birthday off (#sewcation)! But no worries – I spent those 3 HURRICAtion days soaking up all that is wonderful: I spent a full day with my sister and spent the other two catching up on the blog (did you notice the extra posts this month?!) and sewing!

birthday-seams

Big thank you to everyone who took the time to reach out to me on my birthday. It meant the world to me!

Hope you are all enjoying beautiful fall weather and soaking up time with family and friends. Until next month ‚̧ – Jordan

{Catch up on all of my monthly What I’m Lovin’ posts here.}

DIY Carpet Powder

Last year at Crafty Feast, I picked up the most amazing handmade carpet powder. It was lavender scented and even had pieces of dried lavender bud mixed in. It came in a 16 ounce jar which [unfortunately] only lasted me one application.

I may have ignored the “sprinkle¬†lightly” instructions… {I have 3 dogs!}

Being frugal [and stocked with essential oils] I was determined to make my own.

I was quite surprised at how simple it was to make. Let me follow that with: I am not a professional carpet-powder-connoisseur. I am just a frugal gal who was in desperate need of help alleviating the affects of three dogs on rugs – and I think I found a pretty good solution!

carpet-powder

What you need

  • Glass jars with lids
  • Baking soda (1 pound will fill a 16-ounce jar)
  • Essential Oils (my favorite odor-busting combination is Young Living’s Thieves¬†[10 drops] + Purification¬†[20 drops])
  • Mixer or whisk¬†
  • Mixing bowl

To start, I gathered two 16-ounce jars. After realizing how easy this was to make, I would’ve made more if I had more jars available!

One of my jars was leftover from the carpet freshener I purchased at Crafty Feast. The other jar was a salsa jar that I cleaned and thoroughly air-dried. I found that running the jar through my dishwasher loosened the label enough for me to peel off, but if you do not have a dishwasher, you could soak the jar in hot, soapy water and use some lemon essential oil to remove it.jars

The purchased powder came with a super cute lid for sprinkling, but I have seen some at Hobby Lobby and also here on Amazon. Alternately, you could drill holes into the lid you have or just plan to sprinkle with the lid off.

lids

One two-pound box of baking soda will fill two 16-ounce jars. Any brand of baking soda is fine!

baking-soda

Gather your supplies.¬†While I used my electric mixer, you could¬†easily mix this with a whisk. The substance is light so you don’t need much power.

Some essential oils (mostly citrus-based) can break down plastic so I avoid using plastic kitchenware when mixing recipes with essential oils just in case. I found this metal mixing bowl at Target, but a glass bowl would also be fine.

supplies

You can either measure out two cups of baking soda or pour the baking soda into your jar until it fills the top then dump into your mixing bowl. The latter is probably best РI  found that when I measured out exactly two cups I ended up with a little spilling over my jar.

powder

The best recipe I have found incorporates 10 drops of Thieves Essential Oil and 20 drops of Purification Essential Oil. These are definitely two of my favorite, most used oils (second to lavender!). The fragrance of the Thieves oil reminds me of Christmas so the scent is really comforting. The Purification oil is great for cleansing the air and alleviating odors (also makes a great spray for your car).

Note: I use¬†Young Living essential oils. I have a membership with them and have been very pleased with the quality. I have not tried this recipe with other brands of EO’s, but use whatever suits you best!

pet-oils

The Thieves + Purification combination is a heavy hitter for odors. It is a great combo if you have pets. Another combination I tried for a fresher scent was Grapefruit and Citrus Fresh (Orange could be a good substitute) Р7-8 drops of each oil.

citrus-oils

Whatever combination you choose, sprinkle the drops directly onto the baking soda dumped into your mixing bowl. Try to sprinkle them evenly – I found that the oils clump a bit in the baking soda so spreading them around is best.

oils-in-powder

Now mix it up! Again, you really don’t need much power since this is a light mixture. If you are using an electric mixer, use the lowest speed. You could also use a whisk.

If you do not have a funnel in your kitchen (I did not), grab a clean piece of paper and twist for a make-shift funnel. Use the funnel to help pour the mixture into your jar. This can still get quite messy so placing a tea towel under your jar might be a good idea ūüėČ

funnel

You ¬†will want to let your mixture sit for at least 30 minutes for the oils to mingle with the baking soda. I let mine sit for a few days before use. Since these are so easy to make, it’s worth whipping up several at a time so they are ready for use when you need them. This would also make a great housewarming gift.

Be sure to label your jars – particularly if you are making multiple scent combinations so you will know which to grab depending on your needs. You can use washi tape across the top of the jar or on the side of your jar if you don’t have a label-maker (that’s on my wish list!). Alternately, you could use these chalkboard mason jar lid labels.

citrus-powder

I’m a heavy sprinkler so one jar typically lasts me one area rug. Depending on the odor you’re dealing with, you could very likely stretch it further. Since I know how easy it is to whip up, I’m less concerned with stretching it ūüėČ

Once you sprinkle on your carpet, let it sit for at least 30 minutes. I usually let it sit for a few hours or even overnight before vacuuming up.

pet-powder

And you’re done! Can you believe how easy that was?!

Turn this recipe into a room air freshener/odor absorber by cutting in half for an 8-ounce jar (like these) or quartering for a 4-ounce jar (like these). Just leave the lid off or add one of these pretty lids.