So, here’s the million dollar question: What’s the difference between something homemade and something handmade?
In my mind, I imagine something homemade would resemble the play dough statue I no doubt erected and gave my mother at five years old or a sweater some distant relative gives you with pictures of cats on it that you throw in the closet. Handmade, to me, is something carefully assembled with specially selected items, whatever they may be (by hand of course) but also has an element of being “together”. A “tidiness”, I suppose. Maybe even slightly modern? But these feelings are a totally subjective, which brings me to the title of my post.
I have found myself saying something a little different in the past (see: insert “crap” for craft).
In the past week or so that I took away from blogging, I’ve felt like a kid without a Ritalin prescription, and desperately diagnosed to need one. But in a good way.
Allow me to explain:
I have mentioned before that I am a creature of habit and enjoy following a routine. Beginning my day with a coffee and sitting down to write had, without me actually realizing it, helped me to stay on track with my projects. It helped me focus. As I typed out goals and described future plans, it set an outline in my head (and on the Internet) for me to follow. Without this amount of structure, as loose as it may seem, I have been all over the place (again, in a really good way). No crap, so far. Just craft!
I learned to hem my own jeans using the original hem that they came sewn with! I found really clear cut and well laid out instructions with step by step photos here. I am five foot eight inches tall, so I don’t know who has the legs to wear Frankie B. jeans straight out of the store, but damn you if you can.
On my trip to Maryland I was going through sewing withdrawal, so I compensated by downloading quilting and sewing books onto my iBooks and Kindle. My favorite thus far out of all of them is ‘The Practical Guide To Patchwork, New Basics For The Modern Quiltmaker’, by Elizabeth Hartman, which comes with twelve projects and complete step by step instruction for each. It has great visual aide of all kind and I really love how she offers so many variations on each project so it is truly like you are getting much more than that. The blocks pictured above (obviously not squared up yet) are just a few of the eighty I have nearly completed to make the ‘Small Plates’ quilt from the beginners projects section. In particular, I really enjoyed the emphasis on creativity that deciding to fussy cut the middle squares brought putting this together. I got this book here.
I got some new fabric, too! The top picture of blue fabrics came from Above All Fabric, the middle picture is an assortment of random fabrics I picked up on my trip to Maryland, and the bottom picture is of Melody Miller’s fabric Ruby’s Rising Star, which I ordered from Swell Cloth.
The designer has commented on her line saying, “P.S. If you’re curious, this line was inspired by women from shopping catalogs in the late 60′s. I wanted to tell a story about the women, and the objects that filled their lives.”. It is 85% linen and 15% canvas, which is heavy for a quilt, so I am using it to make this bag (in progress):
And ALSO, I started (and am nearly done now) with my very first HST (half square triangle) quilt top! You know, I felt a little idiotic about this, but I guess it’s funny now, so I’ll share… I had no idea what HST stood for until someone very kindly posted a tutorial in my comments section just a bit ago. After I educated myself and had that “Omg that makes sense” moment, I went to share the hilarity with Brandon and he said, “Omg, that makes sense. I didn’t want to ask what it meant, but I had no idea either”. Sometimes it’s really good to know your not alone in things.
After all of this fabric cutting, I noticed that the baskets that are normally more than adequate to hold my scraps had begun to overflow and takeover our living room. Brandon didn’t seem to phased by it, and Chloe, with all of the little strips and strings everywhere probably worked muscles she didn’t even know she had trying to chase them all. I can only stand a little clutter and for a very little amount of time, so of course, my last project was to organize my scraps. I set aside strips, specifically, after being inspired by this Scrappy Stars Quilt Block Tutorial. What a great explanation of everything! (plus I LOVE this chick’s blog).
After a long day of chasing strings and trying to bite the corners of my quilt blocks,
Chloe ended up celebrating Memorial Day by passing out cold (she is snoring in this picture- seriously) while Brandon and I made banana splits (his first time!)
And with that, now it is time for a nap (or diabetic coma, which ever comes first) of my own.