Still shots from the Sewing Studio

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Crys does Cre8te…on occassion

Here are  few Christmas goodies to share. Hopefully I will reveal more tomorrow. Please excuse the crappy photos, I am sick, it is late,and there are only 3 days left till Christmas. Yada Yada Yada

What do you get today’s modern lesbian who has it all??? For Tiffany (My sister’s girlfriend) I embroidered some organic cotton towels:

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If I had more time there are some things I would do differently. But I don’t.

Sergio the serger’s first project is a little baby outfit. He and I are still getting to know one another but I think this came out cute. I usually sew with woven fabric as opposed to knits so this was a good step out of the comfort zone.

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And for my secret pal at work who is obsessed with penguins I made a little apron:

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and I convinced Michael to model for me:

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He didn’t want me to take a picture of his face but then he started acting silly so I snuck one in….

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That’ all for now. Hopefully I will have more to share tomorrow.

Date night with Michael…

So Thursday was a wet and dreary day in Wisconsin. I won’t complain too much since it was raining and NOT snowing….Oh how I am dreading the snow….cold, wet feet, soggy, stained pant legs, and slippery, treacherous ice. However Thursday was a great day for napping, sewing and going to the movies. Which as it turns out is exactly what we did.

On Wednesday night at Bible study someone mentioned the movie Fireproof. This is a Christian based movie about marriage. Most other Christians have heard of this movie especially since it has been selling out in places however we live under a rock (and do not watch much TV or listen to the radio) so we were clueless. As soon as Michael found out Kirk Cameron was in it he started begging to go. Michael is a huge fan of the Way of the Master ministries which Kirk is a part of. So after a day of napping, sewing and general putzing around with a little laundry thrown in for good measure we headed out to Wausau to see the movie. Actually before we drove to Wausau we had to stop at the local hobby shop to get a coal mine for someones model railroad. I won’t complain since it will keep him happy and busy….too busy to play with Bernie which is something he thinks he wants to do. Ok, back to the subject at hand….

This movie was phenomenal. Simply amazing. It gave me so much joy to see a wholesome Christ-center movie on the big screen as opposed to straight to DVD which is usually the lot of Christian movies. I highly recommend any married person or person considering getting married go see this movie. It is based around a couple on the brink of divorce and the change in thoughts and actions they go through and the decisions they make. I won’t spoil the rest but please go see it. Even if you aren’t Christian it will be beneficial. I promise. Michael and I had a great discussion regarding our marriage on the way home from the movie. I guess that is the one benefit to having to drive 45 minutes to the theater.

Also check out this site


There is also a home study that goes along with this movie. We are going to host the study in our home starting in January. If you want to come please do…I will make cookies.

Evolution of a Sewing Studio

In my efforts to clean, organize and declutter so that I have a more peaceful simpler life I concentrated my efforts on m sewing space. It really needed some attention especially since the Lusty Ladies come over on Tuesdays to sew. This room was a wreck!

When I first started reallying getting into sewing I carved a little space out in Michael’s home office. He didn’t really want to share the space but since he has his real office NEXT DOOR I didn’t really care, he can share. I have an art studio downstairs but I wanted a separate space for sewing upstairs. I am spoiled I know. This what my first humble little space looked like…


And my “stash” in the beginning…..
more fabric
Then I decided I needed more space since I acquired more stuff like to sew with friends. So one weekend we moved Michael’s junk home office down stairs and my sewing room into the guest room. We turned the small room that had housed my sewing stuff and Michael’s junkhome office into the guest room. It made more sense that way. We don’t have people sleep over all that much so the smallest room would be fine for guests and I sew all the time (and have a lot of stuff) so the other room would work better since it has way more space. This is what happened….. (yes, I am properly embarrassed to be showing my pig sty over the internet, I hope my aunt never sees this)
Junk piled everywhere! The space was barely usable…. so I spent this weekend doing this…
Made a rack for my favorite fabrics…. My Heather Ross, Sandi Henderson, Heather Bailey, Amy Butler and Joel Dewberry are now stacked according to designer.
My Ottobres (Eurpoean pattern magaizes for my non sewing friends) and other Eurpoean patterns are in the leather box on top. The other container has finished crocheted fruit.
The bookshelf houses my knit fabrics and fat quarter sets in the boxes. I LOVE that fushia vase. I drove from Detroit to WI with it in my front seat wrapped in bubble wrap and comforters. Thread is stored on top of the white shelf (obviously) and inside that white pantry thing is batting, denim, twill, fleece and other misc fabric. I once foolishly said I wouldn’t ever have more fabric then could fit in the white pantry…..I was such a novice.
Bernie is on her table (that I found at a thrift store. I thought it would be perfect for Michael’s Hamm radio stuff but he wasn’t using it so I stole it back)
I got that oak cabinet from Brenda who wasn’t going to use it in her new apartment (Thanks Sugar!) It has lots of room and fit that corner well.
I even organized inside it! Sewing notions, Embroidery modual, Camera equipement and patterns….in that order. On the antique vanity bench is my yarn stash…. I am still looking for a better option (prettier) option to store this. Especially since I will be bring back the vanity that goes with that bench from Tennessee after Thanksgiving. It was in Michael’s grandma’s bedroom when she was a girl. Michael’s mother also used it when she was a teenager. I love the history and can’t wait to pass it down to my daughter.
I have always felt so guilty piling so much junk on top of this cabinet. Most people do not realize that there is a treasure inside. One I should be using.
Suzette my Singer 201. I literally came home and found her on my porch one day. She is gorgeous, is in great working condition and has all her parts! My manual is from 1934.
And my Ikea shelf that holds the rest of my fabric. My cutting mat lives on the top although I do my cutting in the kitchen on the counter since it is much better on my back.
Now that it is clean and organized Michael said he would consider painting. But I might recruite the Lusty ladies to paint. I am thinking an olive color but that could change. I am waiting on fabric to arrive to make matching curtains and have a couple paintings in process to make the space look awesome….. But for now I am happy it is at least useable and tidy!

An unexpected surgery for Bernie….

Last week when I was at Bernina Guide club is Wausau I was working on the Stripped to pieces bag and all of a sudden Bernie started revolting. None of her stitches were working and she kept breaking needles and thread. Karen came over because obviously I was doing something wrong (insert eye roll here) however she could not fix it either. It was a good thing Al (Bernie’s Doctor) was there so he could have a look at her. While he looked at her I stepped out of the room to call Michael since I was pissed. When I came back in the room this is what I witnessed…. it was tragic….I was shocked and appalled

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Poor Bernie sitting there with all her gadgets and whatnots exposed. Al was able to get her to cooperate that night however when she is have some tension/thread bunching issues still. this will require me to drive to Rhinelander 2 hours away and wait for her to be seen by the Doctor again….. Not a great time for her to fall ill since I have serious holiday sewing to be working on and tomorrow is Craft night!

Crys is Cre8ting…

Thought I would do a post to let everyone knows what I am currently working on.

On the needles now is this for Barbara for Christmas…. I am not ruining a surprise here since she was there when I bought it. Actually she picked up the sample and said “make me this”. She even picked out the yarn. Its made of cheap yarn which is hare for me since I am a yarn snob and prefer working with natural fibers and hand dyed yarn. Oh well, I know she will appreciate it and I love giving gifts. Now I must decide on holiday presents for the other Lusty Ladies….

Bernie and I are working on this quilt for Tilena’s christmas present. The focus fabric is this that Tiffany brought back from Paducah’s fabric heaven.

I am also working on this bag for my dear mother in law. I am using these fabric for spring. But I need to make her a holiday bag also.

I have also designed our holiday cards and gathered the supplies I need to execute them. I just need to create them and address envelopes. I also need to update my address list so I can send my home made cards to all the people I care about (and those I am obligated to acknowledge) SO if I do not have your address please email me!

On the Art front I am attempting to capture the amazing display mother nature is putting on for us this Autumn on film.

I am also working on a college with all the fortune cookie fortunes I have been collecting for a couple years now. This project is taking on a life of its own and it becoming very dimensional. Exciting but my muse only allows me to focus on this for short spurts of time.

I am not painting anything right now but I am hoping to get to art village on Saturday to be inspired by the art of Wassily Kandinsky. I am digging anything Russian right now and it is about time to get the brushes and pigments out!

Sorry for all the links (I hate it when people do that excessively) however someone just learned a new trick!

Introducing Bernie

I thought I would take this opportunity to talk about my sewing machine which is a Bernina Artista 180 who I have named  Bernie. She is a new to me sewing/embroidery combo that I bought this summer (Thanks Uncle Sam!). Before that I sewed on an old white that was given to me by a lovely lady who I use to work with in Detroit at the cancer center. I was grateful to get the White since I had wanted a sewing machine for so long but it was a pretty basic model and very finicky. When I decided to take quilting classes in December it was very frustrating using the white since I could not alter my stitch length or drop my feed dogs and she had loads of tension issues. SO I planned to save a couple hundred and buy a new machine. I was looking at something pretty basic like the Brother my friend Michelle has or a cheaper Janome.

The quilting shop I was taking classes at was a Bernina dealer and that’s what everyone there sewed on. Man, every time I went in there I had to walk by all those swanky machines. I wanted one bad however a Bernina was nowhere near my budget…..until the new models came in and someone traded up. I went to class one day and passed the shelf they had just set all the used machines on that folks had traded in. I spotted Bernie and another option that was a lot less and I started plotting in how I could make one of them mine! Every time I went to class I would spend some time visiting the machines. I decided that I really wanted Bernie since she was also an embroidery machine. I hadn’t planned on acquire and embroidery machine or even thought I needed one before now but once I got the idea in my head the possibilities seemed endless.

I have to thank my buddy Michelle for convincing my husband Michael of the merits of getting me a new machine. It wasn’t that hard and he kindly allowed me to keep our entire economic stimulus check to buy my new machine. Some of Bernie’s selling points were:

1) She looks really cool. She is computerized and has a touch screen (I am easily impressed)

2) She also came with the embroidery module and a cord to plug her into my computer to down load embroidery designs from the internet.

3) The shop I purchased her from was an authorized Bernina dealership and the owners husband is an authorized repair guy. He assured me he could keep my investment running for lots of years to come.

4) Bernie came with approximately 35 hours of free lessons aimed at teaching me all her tricks both sewing and embroidery wise. As a sewing/quilting newbie this has a lot of appeal.

5) Did I mention she looks really cool and now I have the coolest machine of all my friends? Before I had the crappiest…. (Shallow I know)

Things did not go as smoothly as I had hoped. I had to wait for the check to come in the mail but I checked every week and Bernie was still there. The owner and my teacher/store manager both new I intended to purchase her and was just waiting on my check. So finally my check arrives and I run directly to the quilt shop to buy my new machine. I get there and am told that the owner agreed to hold the machine in the back for a customer who came in last week and was thinking about buying her but had to wait for her economic stimulus check to arrive. WTF??? I had been planning on buying that machine for months and they knew that. What’s a girl to do? I was devastated and broke out in tears (which I never do BTW) I was livid, I have been a pretty damn good customer at that shop since I started quilting seriously (wanna see my stash????) I take classes and such all the time. And some chick walks in and they offer to “hold” the machine for who only knows how long??? And she wasn’t even a regular (cuz I DID ask) So L the store manager/teacher calls the owner at their other location to see if they had another 180 for sale. They did (Thank goodness) but I would have to wait another week to get it (whatever, you suck)

So I go back and get my machine and the owner K walks me through a few things and lets me know when to come for Bernina Guide Class for my lessons with the sewing machine and for Embroidery Club for that sort of stuff. I go back to the shop the following Thursday for Underground Railroad class and guess what I find out? They are going to close the shop in like a month. They just told the staff back in the office right b/f class. They are going to keep the other location open but its like 3 hours away. Such is life. They did let us know that they will continue the guide classes and embroidery club once a month at a hotel conference room 35 miles away. Wonderful… (dripping with sarcasm). Reasons 3 and 4 (see above) are looking great right about now…NOT. The only other sewing machine shop in town is a Janome dealer and I purposely did not go to the Janome place to look at machines b/c their customer service BLOWS and I have been waiting for a callback from them for a year regarding classes (I have given up hope).

So I get Bernie home and my mind is flooded with all the possibilities of what I can cre8te. I don’t know where to begin… technically I should have continued on with the Underground Railroad quilt I was making for class. I start like 4 new projects just b/c I can…. As annoying as this process was I do love Bernie and I do feel very blessed to have a nice machine for a change. I am looking forward to learning all kinds of new tricks…Mostly I need to learn free motion quilting but that is another post all together.