Friday, February 8, 2013

Surprises

I know what you are all thinking. Stefanie who? I have been absent for a while. I have nothing to offer as far as excuses go, just the usual family stuff. December and January are hugely busy months for our family. I believe that those two months will be my "Sit quietly and reflect on the year past and to come, and enjoy my family." sort of months. I hope everyone is okay with that. :)

I have struggled with creativity lately, with doomy gloomy weather, and some bothersome health issues. Nothing to go into tremendous detail about. Just... blah. I have worked in bits and pieces, but do have so many ideas I want to see to completion. I am not normally a person who has UFO's, but I confess. I have too many to count. Progress comes in many forms though, and I will get there.

I have had so many wonderful, terrific, perfectly lovely things happen in the last couple of months. I will try to share more in separate posts, but since this one is titled "Surprises", I guess I'll stick to that.

My husband threw me the swankiest, coolest, most awesome surprise party ever. The venue was perfect, with velvet chairs in my favorite color, silver vases filled with bright orange gerber daisies, a three tiered fondant covered cake of delicious flavors, foods of all shapes and sizes... *sigh* Loved every minute, but the overwhelming feeling of love and support from family and friends was the best. I cried. I am so blessed. Truly truly blessed.

The next big surprise for me came yesterday when I was with my sewing group. One of my friends said she had a hard time finding my blog. So another friend, without missing a beat, grabbed her IPad. She types in Sweet by Stefanie G, and voila! Something comes up, she shows it to me and, recognizing the logo, said, "See right here!" I did indeed recognize the site. But it was not my blog.

It was my website.

It even took me a moment to digest this new tidbit. Yes, the site is live. Yes, it is still the same disappointing site it was months ago. Part of it is my fault, the photography, the delay. BUT I did not launch this. I called the provider, and indeed, they said I hadn't launched, they didn't know how it became live, but it did, and now what to do? We have a plan of action now, and I guess nothing kicks you solidly into gear than a surprise like that. :-/

Speaking of surprises, if you are a customer and found that you could place items into a cart that went nowhere, I am so terribly sorry. Please email me and I promise to make it right.

If you are a wholesale house who thinks that the site isn't a best representation of me or my brand, you are correct. I haven't made too many mistakes, but this sure feels like a doosy. Honesty, there it is.

So there you have some new thoughts and surprises. It's time for some new photography, and much business catching up. But when you know it's time, it's definitely time. Somebody hit the "launch" button, and it wasn't me. I may not have been ready before, but it is time to pull my big girl panties on and get to work. I would call this a "Serendipitous" event. I will embrace it and make it good.

Enjoy your day!


Monday, November 12, 2012

Be Jolly! (Freebie embroidery pattern!)

 
Woo Hoo! For those who write HTML, you can stop reading now. This was a big deal for me. Probably a MUCH bigger deal than it needed to be, but hey, we (my hubby and I) did it!
 
Coming up with a sweet little pattern was easy. Posting it as a permanent link, well, let's just reiterate how not computer savvy I am.
 
Couple things, before I instruct you to go right over to the right side of your screen and click on the "Be Jolly" image. 1) My hubby takes full credit for uploading the information, upside down. Not a big deal, especially when you are going to print it out anyway. (Some of you are thinking, "But Stefanie isn't your semi-OCD kicking in? The answer is of course, YES. I will change it, just not today. ;0) 2) The pattern is for the embroidered image, what you do after that is your choice. What I wanted to do was use a cute little wooden hoop, with some beautiful ribbon. Sans that, I decided on gluing my piece to heavy crardstock, and adding loads of colorful buttons. (Aleen's craft glue was my friend in this endeavor) You can make little stuffed sachet ornaments or pins, the point is to make it your own and have fun with it. You will notice that there is a string of holly and "Be Merry Be Bright". Feel free to use those too, just remember that in transferring images, the letters need to be in reverse. (Meaning trace the back of the page, not the front. A light box or window is helpful there. :0)
 
It is snowy and beautiful here, and I have my hot pumpkin spice tea and Christmas music playing. I definitely encourage the same!
 
Enjoy your day!



Thursday, November 1, 2012

Friends Part One

I was lucky enough to get to go to a friend's house for the day. This has been on the books for a while, and I always look forward to us getting together. Her name is Patti, and we have come to be great friends, after coming out of a "what doesn't kill you only makes you stronger" event. LOVE her. Also she is hysterically funny, charming, and a great cook. Chili, and homemade rolls today. (Of course she knows that I love bread. And leftover Halloween candy.) Everyone needs a Patti in their life. She has a wealth of knowledge on quilting, which is her "sewing drug" of choice. (Speaking of drugs, there is something in those rolls. I. Can't. Stop. Eating.) But she is happy to share her vast array of skills with me as I am with her. Which totally implies that I am vastly skilled myself. (Sewing, or eating her homemade rolls? Hmmm.) Anyway, back on topic...


I know, right? They glisten with butter. OMG.

Oh yes, topic of today was a laminate rain jacket for her daughter. I have some experience with garment sewing, (not my first area of expertise, but I can get through a pattern) and looked forward to working with this fun fabric. It was a matte laminate, which I love. Pink, which her daughter loves.
Patti put the Teflon foot on her Bernina and we were set. We were using the Amy Butler rain jacket pattern, which I must say is possibly not beginner friendly, but perfect for an intermediate sewist. (just an opinion) (lots of terms and lengthy directions) Anywho, we were so close before I had to go. We just have the sleeves and putting the outer with the inner, hem it up, and voila!

 
 
Serious cuteness going on here. :)
 
I also enjoyed going around her sewing studio, taking random pictures of her stuff. You know voyeuristic pictures of sewing goodies?
 
 
A half completed Fritzi bear.
 
 
A stunning quilted mug rug created by our friend Moni, she will be featured here soon. :)
 
 
The sweetest little sewing basket from when she was young, and a wooden spool of grosgrain tape that I covet.
 
 
I am in love with so many of the quilts in this room, but especially this one. This one is for me. :)
 
So that's the day in a nutshell. I had a wonderful time with a great friend, laughing until my sides hurt, drinking enough tea to well, you know, and eating myself silly. Everyone needs a Patti. But get your own, I'm not sure I can share. :0)


Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Keeping Busy and Other Nonsensical Things

To start off I will get the bad mojo out of the way. My website looks like a five year old created it. Like a mass produced, fill the pictures and content into set spots and call it good. Uh, so not good I cannot even tell you. This blog looks positively divine, comparatively. So. Still working on that. (Did I cry? No, but I stomped around and had a fit like that five year old that did the site. :0)

Other goodness though, would be going to Seattle to enjoy a weekend away with a girlfriend, eating and drinking our way through downtown. Perfectly lovely. Also, West Seattle Fabric Co. will be carrying my patterns, so a little bit of write off going on? Why yes I think so! And those gals (Monica, the owner, and Meg, sweet friend and employee) are fabulous I tell you. The neighborhood is terrific, with everyone walking their dogs, enjoying coffee on the sidewalk... I want to live there. And I am not kidding. When I walked into the bright space of the shop, I was greeted warmly by Meg, and found out that Monica was across the street enjoying lunch with her husband and daughter. They popped over and I got to meet them all, with their little daughter all dressed up witchy and super cute for Halloween. Loved it, and a perfect end to a great weekend.


I know I have said before that "Night Circus" is a good book, and since Halloween is my favorite holiday, I volunteered to have book club here, and (duh) chose that book. It's not a Halloween themed book per say, but very magical with a "night" and all black and white color scheme. I had a little too much fun prepping for this party, but all seemed to enjoy it, as I even placed a dress code on the guests, and dressed up as one of the main characters myself! Tomato Basil soup and a bevy of sandwiches comprised the menu, with black forest brownies for dessert. YUM. Fun night!! (Also, I am slightly OCD, and since the theme was all black and white, I of course covered up all my furniture with white sheets. :0)

This is why.


I am systematically recovering the cushions on my microfiber couch. Anyone with this color of microfiber, with kids and/or pets, knows how difficult they are to keep clean. I have an impossibly great collection of home decor weight fabric, so I patch worked it all together to create large sheets, and cut out the pattern. (By "cut out the pattern", of course I mean that I set the cushion on top of the sheets of patchwork and cut around it. :0) The hardest part was stuffing the cushions in without ripping or tearing the seams. I encourage child labor on this, and had my eldest sit on the bent cushions so I could pull the fabric over. So you see, I have a bright and multi-colored living room, which is wonderful until you are doing a black and white themed dinner party.

We did discuss the book briefly, and are considering changing our "book" club, to "wine" club.

This is one of my new (By "new" I mean of questionable date and purchased second hand.) "girls". I am currently stalled on a ruffle vest pattern, and having a dress form to work with is divine. There were two sizes, so I bought both. I will probably recover them. In answer so some of your questions, "Why wouldn't you get a dial-a-size?" I had considered it, but to be honest, my studio is located very central in our home, and being a bit OCD, I wanted them to be as aesthetically pleasing as possible. Plus they are fun to dress for the holidays, like I did here.

Well, thanks for sticking with me while I toil on the website, and finalize some other projects. Also thanks for sticking through my ramblings, I am going to go polish off some more Halloween candy now. Then my hubby is taking me out to a nice lunch at our favorite restaurant before taking the kiddos out trick-or-treating. WOW it just occurred to me that we only have one trick -or-treater. Sad how they grow up so fast. And sad that I am running out of candy.

Enjoy your Halloween!! :0)


Monday, October 15, 2012

Anticipation...

Waiting for a preview of my new website is like waiting to give birth. Seriously. It can show up in my "in-box" any day now!! In the meantime, I have sent off some patterns to be previewed by a wholesale house, and worked on some new designs.


The "cake dudes" (Really. I don't know what else to call them.) embroidery set is almost ready to go to the designer who puts things into a lovely readable format. They are turning out so cute, and today I'll be working them into a wall quilt pattern. :)



I've also been enjoying quality kid time, like taking pictures of my son, when he got stuck in his car. Because, only a great mom would photograph the incident before lending a hand. Not so much enjoying the child pictured having Chicken Pox. Apparently you can still get them even though you have been vaccinated. Who knew. And yes, my having Shingles is what gave it to him. Poor guy. And poor Mama, he has been making up for two sick weeks with all the terrible two"ness" he can muster. Glad he is better though! Besides, being a little naughty makes for great photo opportunity. :)

My oldest daughter got to go to her first dance in high school. She was so EXCITED! Of course she looked beautiful, and of course I felt old, but she so enjoyed this first right of passage, and I enjoyed the girl time shopping for dresses and doing her hair and make-up.
 
 
Also, if I haven't mentioned that fall is my favorite season, let me just state for the record, that I LOVE fall! The colors, the cooler temps, and my favorite holiday of all, Halloween. I feel re-energized. Look forward to future postings of fabulous fall stuff. A recipe I'm thinking, some Halloweenish decor... Can't wait!  Enjoy your day! :0)


Monday, October 1, 2012

A Cool Guy Indeed


My son and I, (Hubby was working, DARN IT) got to meet a legend today!!! The great Edgar Martinez, formerly of the Seattle Mariners was in Spokane today, signing bottles of his signature tequila. (The Hubby will be appreciating that no doubt, although he isn't sure he wants to drink it or save it now!)

There wasn't a huge crowd after me, so I got to talk to him a bit, and all I can say is, what a nice guy. (And EXTREMELY good looking.) He is a gentleman. I asked him if he missed Seattle, the game, the camaraderie. (In hindsight, how lame, everyone he meets must ask him the same thing!) He graciously answered, and didn't roll his eyes at me, "This question again?" *sigh* Nope, perfect gentleman.

And of course he misses it. :)

Loving today, enjoy yours :0)


Monday, September 24, 2012

Shingles Suck.

Not sure what else I can add to that title, because that says it all. I've never had Shingles before, and although I pray not to, I most assuredly will get them again. Yay. I have been laying low, reading a lot, (Harry Potter, the first three books, and Night Circus. WOW on Night Circus, you should read it, really it is quite wonderful.) watching all last season of "Once Upon a Time", and Pinteresting. But that was last week, and the week before. It wasn't all doomy gloomy, though...

Tucked in there as well, however, was a wonderful little get-away with just me and my husband for our anniversary. We went to a hot springs in Montana. We had a quaint little cabin, where the furniture was made out of big pine logs, and the quilt was woodsy colors with leaves and trees. The pub had great drinks and brews, and my hubby beat me at pool. I knew he would, but at least he stretched it out so I didn't feel beaten so badly. The restaurant had incredible food. Who knew from such a small place, but I guess since it's in the middle of no-man's land, this is where the locals would come for a nice meal. The air was cool and crisp, the leaves turning colors, and we enjoyed a big hike in the mountains, and walks along the river. The hot springs felt positively divine. By the way, this was pre-shingles outbreak, so no one was injured or otherwise maimed in this trip. ;0) I came home with some souvenir stones from the river, all polished smooth, and a romantic gift from my husband that made me teary. I am a lucky girl.

Also we stocked up on some liquor because it was cheap in Montana.

I am completing work on the website, and collecting more fabric that I swear I will use. Really. I am sending out some patterns to a couple shops, and there is one interested in doing a trunk show. Exciting for me as I feel I'm not fully up and running yet, but raring to go!

Enjoy a wonderful, shingles-free, not doomy gloomy day!

Pssst... I am!


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