Pillowcases, finally.


So a little over a year ago I bought two yards of fabric because they were *mildly* on sale (albeit still very expensive) and they matched our bedding. I intended to use them to make pillowcases, but somehow never got around to it.

A few weeks ago I was reorganizing my fabric stash, and came across the two yards. I considered adding them to the two large bags of fabric that I was giving away because it no longer inspired me and was taking up precious room, but these two, they mocked me. If you have fabric that has been laughing at you for a while, you will understand.

At any rate, I recently scored a Brother 1034D serger from fabric.com with a sweet 25% off coupon. (I’ve noticed that the base price has since risen, but back then it was listed at about $200, with free shipping on orders over $150. As this machine has a list price of just shy of $400, I should perhaps underline the “score” part of that first sentence.) I have since checked out several books on sergers from our local library, and while they have been helpful, most have projects that aren’t really all that interesting to me, or are presented in very – shall I say, matronly? – fabrics. No likey.  I have long thought that any sewing/quilting book should be re-done ever few years, with newer, cooler fabrics…I’m sure they’d sell a lot more that way.

Ready, Set, Serge

The book that arrived today was Ready, Set, Serge: Quick and Easy Projects You Can Make in Minutes. It contained a pattern for a simple pillowcase that looked much like I wanted it to look: a long body in one fabric with a border in a second one. The aforementioned fabric has been sitting on my nightstand for a week now, reminding me that I had decided to finally turn it into something cool, so I just went for it. I had to fudge a bit – I only had a yard of each fabric, and the pattern calls for just a bit more. The result is slightly shorter (length-wise) pillowcases, but they are still big enough for our pillows. The subtitle of the book is no exaggeration: this took me about 45 minutes while my son was awake, which translates into 15 or 20 if he’d been napping.

The book also contains other patterns that I’d like to try, many of which would make great gifts. Granted, these pillowcases cost about four times as much as the ones on the pillows just behind, which I bought on sale at Ross – but that was my fault. Had I bought less expensive fabric, these would be very thrifty. I think they’d make great gifts, too…. maybe I’ll start scoping out the bedrooms of our friends and try to find matching fabric!

Here, again, the pillowcases:

Pillowcases 2



Wedding Craftiness

We look like the perfect little cake topper.

I’m feeling a bit sentimental right now because I think I’ve finally gathered up the courage to throw out some decorations that I made for our wedding two years ago. This year I used them as Christmas decorations, which makes sense given that many of the materials were Christmas decorations on clearance at JoAnn Fabrics and Michael’s … except that, as such (that is, Christmas decor) I really don’t like them. Looking back on all the things I made for that one day, I often think of so many things I would have done differently.

The Tables at our "Dinner and Dancing" Reception

The Tables at our "Dinner and Dancing" Reception

The pink, for one thing. What was I thinking? I mean, I don’t even like pink. Pink and I had a severe falling out in middle school when it informed me that I had to be its best friend, or it would tell everyone that I was going to the Valentine’s Day dance with the guy who played the flute in band. I never even spoke to pink in high school, let alone signed its yearbook. Okay fine, pink and I made friends again sometime in college when I bought a light pink collared shirt from Ann Taylor that made me feel every bit the future International Woman of Mystery that I thought I was. And in retrospect, when I look at photos of the whole “scene” that was set, the brown, cream, and even gold accents predominate the pink. There wasn’t THAT much pink. But when I see photos like this, which shows all the gifts Mr. Man and I gave to our family and bridal party, I think – okay, maybe that was a lot of pink.

Bridal Party Gifts

Thankfully, only a few people saw this table … and most of those were ever so slightly inebriated by the fantastic margaritas my husband-to-be had fixed to accompany our Mexican food rehearsal dinner. Maybe I can persuade them that it was pink elephants they remember?

I know how pink came to be. I was at JoAnn’s, looking at paper to use for our invitations. There really weren’t too many cute “mod” papers to choose from … and the one I liked best happened to be brown, cream, and (gulp) pink. One of my major flaws, design-wise, is that I tend to be far too matchy-matchy. Once I had used said paper for the invitations, I had to run with those colors for everything else. I don’t have any snazzy photos of the invitations, but you can see a stripe of the paper here, in our Thank You cards.

Thank You Cards

Also here, in the wrapped bars of chocolate that served as favors and place cards in our second reception:

Place Cards

Oh, and here in the favor boxes at the first reception:

Koufeta Favors

As you can see, that paper made many appearances. I thought it would tie things together.

At one point, I considered putting the words “This wedding was brought to you by the color pink and Scotch double-sided tape.” on our programs. I bought and used a lot of double-sided tape for this wedding, beginning with invitations and save-the-date cards. For the receptions, I bought plain glass cylinder vases and decorated those with ribbons. Ditto for little votive candle holders. I even used some cheap decorative sticky notes from Tarjay to create our place cards. These, despite their inherent stickiness, still needed a bit of help – so I taped them to the plain place cards using – you guessed it – double sided tape.

Place CardsReception Place Setting

Even our flowers were prepared by yours truly and her bridesmaids. And guess who got married with heinous gashes from rose thorns all over her hands and arms?

Accent RosesBoutonnieres Bride's Bouquet

The decorations which are going to be gone soon (unless they can find a good home) are these beaded topiary dudes that I made using gold and cream beaded sprays from the after-Christmas sales at Michael’s:

Beaded Topiaries

I spray painted the green “faux grass” bit golden, painted simple clay pots and tied little pink ribbon bows around the stem. Then I proceeded to clip the little beads (taking care to leave a decent length of wire stem) and insert them into the foam form. And after I had come up with all this all on my own, and thought I was pretty funky for doing so, I discovered THIS a few months after our wedding. I mean seriously, if it weren’t for the fact that the book came out before our wedding, I would have thought they’d had a spy at our reception. But then, great minds think alike. Or there is nothing new under the sun. Or _______ (insert your favorite cliche here).

At any rate – most photos here were taken by The Vision Yard Wedding Photographers, who we were lucky enough to score before the rest of the world realized how awesome they were and they raised their prices accordingly.  You’ll know the photo they didn’t take (of the Thank You cards) by how non-professional looking it is. If you are looking for a wedding photographer, I highly recommend them.  In fact, they’re so awesome that my mother-in-law used them, as well. (Slideshow here.) My sister-in-law served as Matron of Honor in both weddings, and when she and I made the bouquets for Mama’s wedding, we learned from our previous mistakes. No rose thorn gashes.

If you’re interested, here’s a bit more of the pink and brown handcrafted goodness on Flickr.