Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Fun With Free Vintage Fabric!!!!

Thank God for great neighbors!

Recently, I was given a huge stack of vintage fabrics from a friend of one of my neighbors whose mother had passed away.  She was a seamstress and had lots of random upholstery fabrics and funky prints from the 60's and 70's.  Some couldn't be salvaged, but plenty could be washed and used.  They weren't what I would call popular or stylish prints.  At first glance I only saw about about 5 or 6 prints that I really liked from the 3 boxes of stuff.  When I had a little more spare time, no kids, and some extra laundry money, I went out and sifted though the rest and got what could be salvaged all cleaned up.  There are still 3 or 4 rolls of vintage upholstery fabric our there that I really haven't tried to bond with, but I hope that what happened with the stacks of regular fabric happens with the rolls of upholstery fabric.  After laundering all of the fabrics I wasn't sure what to do with them.  None of the prints, beside the first few that I initially pulled out, were all that great.  The more I looked at them, though, the more I really started to like them.  Slowly I started getting a vision for each and every piece.  I have about a dozen patterns (two dozen is probably more accurate) that I still haven't had a chance to use, but want to make, so I decided this is my chance!  I don't have to buy the fabric, so I may as well just use this stuff to make cute outfits for the family and practice all these cute patterns that I have been collecting.

Here is my pile of fabrics coordinated with the patterns that I want to make with them.

What mess???  Now I have each one all cut up and ready to sew.  I forgot how many pieces I actually have cut up to make, but I think it will be somewhere around 10 articles of clothing.

Here are a few of the things that I have made so far.

This is one of the fabrics I loved right off the bat.  It totally reminds me of my Grandma.  I just got a awesome refurbished industrial sewing machine for my birthday.  I love it so much!  I want to make sure I take good care of it, so this baby needed a cover asap.  It is really thick, filled with fusible batting and a lining, so it stands nicely around the machine.  I added a peace sign for some flare :)

This fabric didn't make it out until the second go round, but I just LOVE it.  There wasn't very much of it.  I love the embroidery design.  It looks as if it may have been a piece at one point and it was cut and salvaged to become something else.  I had a very simple pillow case dress pattern for my daughter that I wanted to use and the size of this piece of fabric was perfect for it.  Plus the embroider design on it makes it look fancier than just a plain fabric pillow case dress.  This is a little big for Aubrey now, but she has more dresses in her closet that Mom has made than she can wear.  She is a tomboy like her Mom, so it's hard to get her in them other than for special occasions.  Hopefully in a year or two she will want to be seen in this.  It actually fits on me, but as a blouse.  It's kinda works.  You might find me borrowing this on the 4th of July.

This fabric is another piece from the "what the heck am I gonna do with this $hit" pile.  I had another pattern that I had used one design from and kinda liked, so I figured I'd try the other dress pattern in the package.  If don't like the way it turns out then there will be no tears shed ... just a lot of cussing over my time wasted.  Anyway, here is the result below.  I made the belt, too.  I found a way to anchor the strap ... I used a clear rubber pony tail band.  Genius!  The strap of the belt sticking out was driving me crazy!  I had a few hiccups with this dress because I ran out of fabric and the dress is supposed to be long, three tiers of equal size, but I'm not a big fan of long dresses, so I shortened the pattern and tried to get all jiggy with it on the last tier and ended up screwing the whole dress up.  I had to take in the second tier and fold the bottom tier in half .... I don't think anyone will notice, though.  I'm hoping I pulled it off.  I haven't had anywhere to wear this yet, but I think I am going to wear it tomorrow to my appointment with one of the local boutiques about carrying my products in their store.  I'm not sure it will pull a compliment, but if it does, I always love to say, "I made this!"  Very gratifying.

The scarf in the picture below is this awesome vintage wool.  It was interfaced and in a perfect rectangular shape.  All I had to do was fold it and sew.  Viola!  Perfect winter scarf!  I made the skirt, too, out of a sweater I bought from the thrift store and never wore.  Note to self ... I do not like sweaters without V-necks.

This fabric I loved instantly.  I like bright colors and I am becoming very, very fond of wool.  Such great textured fabric.  This screamed EASTER DRESS!!!  I thought it would look cute for Aubrey, but I was too greedy to give it all to my dress hating diva.  I decided to make us matching skirts!!  I love how they came out.  The fit on mine is great.  I made one from jersey material and didn't have as much luck, but the wool is fantastic.

Here we are showing off our new matching outfit!  Aren't we adorable? ;-)

I have no idea what kind of fabric this is below.  If anyone knows what the name of it's type is I would love your input.  There was a ton of it!  It totally reminds me of some hippie pants and makes me want to dig out my hackie sack and start kickin' it old school.  I decided that since there was SO much I would make matching outfits for the whole family ... whether they liked it or not.  I plan on making pants for Bayne, a dress for Aubrey, a dress for me and I had enough left over to make a pair of capris for me, too.  

I just finished the pants for Bayne and I.  I am not very good at pants.  They are confusing and hard to get the right fit, but practice makes perfect!  Bayne's came out really nice.  I don't think he loves them, but the fit is good and I think he looks like a cute little hippie :).  Mine needed some MAJOR altering.  I think that the pattern sucks and I need to try pants again with another pattern.  In the end they came out ok, but I had to alter the thighs, bottom, take in the front ... it was madness ... crazy seam ripping nuttiness!  Now that the thread has settled, here are our finished pants!

Bayne's (left) Mine (right)
Not too much size difference in the length!  Crazy!

I put this cool detail stitch on his pocket.

Me and my little hippie :)
All we need now is someone to knit us a hackie sack and we are rockin'!

That is all the fun I've had up until now with my free vintage fabric!  Stay tuned for more soon!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

The Origin of the name Sticky Genius

People always ask me where the name Sticky Genius came from.  No ... I don't think I am brilliant people ... actually quiet the opposite!  I do however have a lot of really great half baked ideas.

When my friend and I saw the commercial for Piglet's Big Movie back in 2003, we fell in love with the ad.  In the scene, which I posted below (I also added the clip, so if you have 5 minutes for Pooh, you can see the clip yourself!), the gang had come up with this "brilliant" plan to get the honey from the hive.  Pooh and his friends show a perfect example of a half baked plan ... good ideas, but they make a big mess pulling it off.  Whenever my friend and I had a "brilliant" idea we would always quote the movie, "We are geniuses!  Sticky Geniuses!"  Generally we had a few cocktails in us and a mischievious grin on our faces when we had one of these bright ideas, so you can only imagine all of the "sticky" situations we got ourselves into with our "genius" plans.  :)

Enjoy yourselves a little Winnie the Pooh ... it's good for the soul!

Watch the clip here or read the scene below:


Hello, there.

Tigger! Are you ready for the hive yet?

All I am is ready. Hoo hoo hoo hoo! How do I look? Hoo hoo. I mean, uh, does this log
make me look fat?

Ohh. Like the best honey tree that a bee will ever see. Ha.

Hoo hoo hoo hoo hoo! Oh, boy. Whoo hoo hoo hoo hoo!

Rabbit, what are you doing?

Oh, can't you tell? I'm lullabying the bees for our big plan. They seem to like Bee-thoven.

Eeyore, what are you doing?

I got to use my big voice... to tell the bees about the new hive. Buzz, buzz. Great new hive.

Tigger, could you tell me what you're doing?

I have to hold the fake hive hive enough for the bees to see. It's the biggest part of the plan. That's what Tiggers do best. Hoo hoo hoo hoo hoo.

You do seem bigger than usual.

Oh, hello, Piglet.

Pooh, what are you all doing?

Harvesting honey, of course. It's all in the plan.  
First, Rabbit will lure the bees with beautiful music.
Then Eeyore tempts the bees into their new hive.
Then Tigger holds up the hive for the bees to see.
And then comes the best part.
We get honey from their old hive. Ha ha.

Can I help you with your big plan?

Well, thank you, Piglet, but, um, perhaps another time. 

When we have a bit smaller of a plan... or when you're a bit bigger of a Piglet. 

I'm sorry, Piglet... but I'm afraid this is a very big plan.

Buzz! Buzz! Buzz! Buzz! Buzz! Buzz! Buzz!

Places, everyone. I've gotten their attention.  Oh! Aah!

Great new hive.  Free rent. Buzz, buzz.

Oh, do the bees know the plan?

Piglet, don't get in the way of our big plan.

I'm getting kind of itchy around my leaves.

Oh, d-d-dear!

Oh, buzz.

Get the little guy.

Oh! Aha!


OK, Rabbit.

We're geniuses.

(The honey spills all over Pooh and Tigger, so they are a sticky mess.)

Sticky geniuses!

Oh, my. Oh, my. Oh, goodness. Oh, the sweet taste of success. Mm-mmm.

Our plan worked perfectly.

Didn't think it would work... but it did.

Congratulations to us all.