Monday, November 30, 2009

I Believe....

....a wee can't never know....

I can't really blog about my crafting this month because I don't know who reads this and some of the things are for presents and I don't want to spoil any surprises.  SO....what to write about? Why, Christmas of course!  It is undoubtedly my favorite time of year.  The lights, the music, the hustle and bustle, I just lurve it all.  Ever since I was a kid.  As the world grows darker and gives more cause for cynicism, I really appreciate a few weeks in the year where we can maybe put those things aside and spread some cheer.  Especially to those with heavy hearts.  Everyone deserves a touch of the magic, no matter the belief system.  'Tis the season...

Since the decorating was completed (sans the tree) at my parents' house this weekend, I really took note of how many Christmas decorations they have. Some are newer and were purchased at end-of-season sales and don't have any true sentimental value.  Others are so old they're falling apart, but the cherished little dears get their time to shine in December.  Sometimes it can be hard to appreciate Christmas as it's happening due to the worries and stress the season can bring, but Christmas memories are always warm and fuzzy. At least around here.  Even if it seemed like a bad Christmas at the time, we laugh and laugh about it now.

My parents went out of their way to make Christmas special for us.  And for those of us with an active inner child it still lives within.  Oh, how I wish it could be Christmas all year 'round.  So I thought I'd spend some time and share a few little "tangible" memories with you.  Hopefully it stirs something within that you had tucked away and brings you a few moments of enjoyment.

Remember: "It is Christmas in the heart that puts Christmas in the air" (W.T. Ellis).
Pay it forward this wonderful season. And check back for some warm fuzzies.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Finally...relaxation. Just in time for Monday.

Howdy. What a weekend it's been.  My mom had 25 people for Thanksgiving dinner, so this required tons of prep work. Peeling potatoes. Chopping whatever it is she puts in the stuffing to make it so perfect.  And oodles of other stuff I can't even remember right now.  I ate so much on Thursday I was still stuffed on Friday morning.  Friday night we had our annual girls' night of hitting the malls--mucho shopping was done.  Not for other people. I loaded up for myself.  Saturday was decorating for Christmas (anyone else tired yet)?  Our house looks like Christmas came in and exploded--not a surface goes untouched or unlit.  And as if that wasn't enough, today I had my "shopping event" at Plush.  The turnout wasn't as good as they expected it to be, but I guess it's the economy...anyway, I didn't do too bad. Not great, but it wasn't disappointing. Plus, it was a really nice day out.  Here are a few shots of my table:

Basket style handbags with matching change purses...

Buttercup handbags...

Satin evening bags...

Assorted foldaway totes, change purses, and cross-stitched Christmas ornaments...

The best part was what I bought (so I didn't profit much, haha)... adorable is this bracelet?

Part of the fun was seeing the nifty items others had for sale.  One lady had the most beautiful antique jewelry.  There was a slightly embarrassing moment when I got excited over what I thought was a $2.00 ring. was $175.  Since the things I lurved were waaaaaaaaay out of my range, I moved next door.  Which is where this bracelet was waiting for me.  She had several gorgeous pieces for sale, and I spent my time there trying to decide what I was going to get that was just different enough from what I already have.  Then, the lovely saleswoman said to me "I have something you might like." And showed me a purse bracelet.  How fitting. How perfect. And it fits me perfect.  It's like it was there all day just waiting for me to come along and make it part of my life.  The rest of her stuff was absolutely the business.  The company she works for is called "Premier Designs" and they make high fashion jewelry.  She had something that could fit every taste and style, and she was an absolute dear.  I am over the moon excited about this bracelet (it's the little things that make me happy).  If you think you might like to host a show, let me know and I'll give you her contact information.

Another vendor there who had some crazy interesting products was a girl selling products for Shaklee. I've never heard of them before but they sound like a great company.  They went "green" way before it was cool. Or really even heard of. They rigorously test their all-natural prodcuts so that they're safe by the time they get to your hands.  They're made to last for a loooong time, and smell delish.  They have cleaning products, beauty products, health products, pretty much everything. And they were very reasonably priced.  Plus--celebs have been getting these in their goodie bags at awards shows, and a few years ago they were one of Oprah's favorites.  Totally worth checking out.  Let me know if you'd like her info too.

That's about all I have for now. I'm off to put up a few new items in the shop, and to curl up and read for a bit before a hectic week starts.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009


Eat too much. Put your waistband to work. 
Off to chop, peel, whatever the chef tells me to do...
Have a beautiful day!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Oh, joy! Rapture!

In my vast experience, you either love or hate the Necco wafer.  There is no in-between.  You may not like a certain flavor (licorice? really? blech...) but you toss those aside and devour the rest. Or you just shun the entire roll.  Like my mother.  Who shudders and acts like someone is showing her a Madagascar hissing cockroach and yells "OH! God! No! How could you EAT that?" like she's watching a cannibal in action.  Anyway, I heart the Necco wafer.  In Sunday school, my teacher used to use them as practice wafers when we were making our First Holy Communion (I think I'm supposed to capitalize that), which I believe may have been sacriligeous but I don't know all the rules.  I won't lie--the traditional eight-flavor pack doesn't always do it for me.  One of the greatest candy moments of my life was the discovery of the chocolate Necco roll. We were visiting my grandparents in Oakdale, PA and my brother and I used to beg to go to the store across the street to get candy.  In our young brains, candy was completely different from one side of the state to the other.  I nearly became apopleptic the first time I saw that lovely roll of "chocolate." 

What's the point of this, you say? This weekend, in my travels, I happened upon....THIS!!!

Go ahead. Click on it. Enlarge it.  Drool a little.  That's right--FOUR chocolate flavors. In one roll.  White chocolate (my favorite), milk and dark chocolate, and mocha.  Someone at the New England Confectionary Company knows what makes me tick, that's for sure.  I'm ready to head back out and buy the entire box.  If you see them, give 'em a shot.  Unless you're one of those people I don't understand who can't see fit to give the Necco wafer its due.

Just thought I'd share.  Off to sew a bit.  Happy trails!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Midnight Kisses....

....sounds romantic, but it's the name of the fabric above.  Joann's had a very appealing sale this weekend and gave me over $30 worth of coupons, so I would have been a lunatic not to take advantage of it.  My main motivation was their sale on purse handles. I entered the store and practically ran to that section, and I do believe I would have elbowed people aside if they were about to get their mitts on what I wanted.  Totally not necessary, as I was the only person looking for them apparently, but I got a few bits of yummy to add to the stash and to complete a few things I've been working on.  After having to be rung up three times because my coupons kept making the computer freeze (kudos to you, cashier Roger, for not losing it--I had a TON of stuff, almost literally haha), I wound my way home, and made a huge mess in the dining room.  But, after two straight days of sewing, these are the new bags for sale--this coming Sunday at the Plush Lounge artisan show in Glenside and soon after that in my shop.  They look really profesh, doncha think?

Each one has a matching change purse that I haven't decided yet if I'm going to sell separately.  The bar that my brother works at has a craft/artisan sale every year (the bar owner's wife is very much into the arts) and he signed me up for it, so I had to move pretty quickly to have some different items to sell.  If anyone lives in the Glenside, PA area and knows where Plush Lounge is on Keswick Avenue--stop on by. The show is from 1-4 on Sunday.  I have a few more things to whip up with some totally fun novelty fabrics I bought because they looked like such fun to work with.  Then after that, I think I'll allow myself to enjoy the holidays a bit and maybe do some knitting.  I have a lot of projects made though, to add to the shop. Now I just need time to take photos...

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Dear God....

If you could add 2 hours to every day from now through Christmas I promise to use the time wisely.  Amen.

Seriously, when did things start moving so fast? One minute I was waiting to grow up and now I want to shed responsibility and just be a kid.  I didn't sign up for this whole adult thing.

I received my first feedback from my first sale and it's a fabulous doozy of a kudos.  Hopefully there's many more.  Here's the text:

"Dear SweetBee,

Today I have received my merchandise. What beautiful work! The package neatly packed and each had such a cute sticker of a bee on ithe wrappings! This made for a GREAT Presentation of the merchandise!! Then, the reciept was tucked into a bag along with a busines card and a cute little flower magnet to go on my fridge!! Thank you! The pocketbooks and clutch were beautiful! The workmanship and materials used were A++ Rated! These were put together so much better then material bags previously purchased in some stores. If you need an inexpensive gift for a friend or family member for a Birthday, or the upcoming holidays, try Sweetbee and you can't go wrong!! The quality can't be beat!!! RMPE"
And I didn't even have to pay her to say that!!

Monday, November 16, 2009


What a fabulous feeling--I made my first online sale yesterday and my first package is ready to ship tomorrow!  I know these things take their sweet time to get going, but I'm glad I sold something within a few days of my site being up.  Very encouraging!! I'm going to go treat myself to something with a lot of calories. Well, a moderate amount of calories. I DID just get home from my aerobics class...can't be too naughty :)   I hope this is the start of something good!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Toaster Cover Tutorial

Mmmmm...nice rainy Saturday. Perfect excuse to be a lazy bones.

I recalled that a million years ago my sister asked me to make her a cover for her toaster. I kept forgetting, and then when I remembered, I didn't have the meaurements. So finally today I am prepared. Of course, she has to be difficult and have a 4-slice toaster which makes life more difficult for me because I just can't box the corners, so I figured I'd post the process I used to make this little jobby. It's a very simple project, and you could buy something fancier--but if you don't care about fancy and just want something to keep you from staring into the top of your toaster then you might want to give this a try. Of course, depending on your fabric and your vision it can be whatever you want.

First, we'll need some measurements. I measured the top and the sides separately, without taking into account seam allowances and wiggle room (yet). Looking down on her toaster top it measures 11 inches wide and 11.5 inches deep. Looking the toaster full in the face it measures 11 inches wide by 7.5 inches high, and from the side it's 11.5 inches by 7.5 inches. You're going to need about a half yard of fabric for the outside and half for the inside. My two sides are exactly the same since I didn't have anything that matched well. I used double fold bias tape to finish off the bottom edge--the stuff that comes in the package. If I was going for flair I would make my own, but this will do just fine.

I am going to use 1/4 inch seam allowances, and I'd like an extra inch for ease, so I am adding 1.5 inches to my measurements above to cut my pieces. From both the outer and inner fabric you will need the following: one piece measuring 13 inches by 12.5 inches; 2 pieces measuring 12.5 inches by 9 inches, and 2 pieces measuring 13 inches by 9 inches.


Now we're ready to sew! We'll do the outside first. Take a front piece (12.5 x 9) and a side piece (13 x 9) and sew them with the right sides together along the 9 inch side. Do the same with the other side and front pieces.  Remember to use a 1/4 inch seam allowance!

 Then sew those together--you will have one long strip at this point. The order of your pieces should be front, side, front, side. Sew the two edges of that loooong strip, right sides together, and you will a very squirmy topless and bottomless box.

Press your seam allowances open nice and flat.

Now for the fiddly part I don't really care for.  Take your remaining piece of fabric (this is the top).  Pin it to your squirmy box, right sides facing each other.  It's easiest if you pin the corners first, and then pin the rest of the edges.  Make sure that you have the correct sides lined up or your cover will come out all twisty.


Once it's pinned all around pop that baby back in your machine and get ready to sew.  Using this method, the corners can get a little frustrating--I find it easier if I put the big square side (the top) face down, and leave the sides facing up.  I feel like I have more control over it that way.  I like to start in the middle of one of the sides; when you get about a quarter inch from the edge, lower your needle, raise your presser foot, pivot, lower your presser foot, and get moving again.  When I reach the corners I like to smoosh the fabric to one side, pivot, then smoosh it the other way.  Keep going until you sew your way around.

Unfortunately, you now have to go repeat this process with your lining. Just look at it as practice!

At this point, we should have two identical bottomless fabric boxes (or topless, you naughty thing, you).

Put one inside the other--make sure that the wrong sides are facing each other.  Pin all around the bottom, matching up your seam allowances.  This may seam obvious, but if your side and front measurements are different, make sure you're matching up the correct sides.  Not that I've ever sewn it incorrectly or anything....ahem.. Sew with a 1/4 inch allowance all the way around.  When you're finished, you should have a totally reversible cover.  All we have left to do now is finish that raggedy bottom edge.  Grab your double-fold bias tape and pin it to the bottom, nestling the edges against the fold.  Take your time and make sure you pin well so everything stays nice and neat.  I simply overlap the edges when I get back to the beginning.


When it's all pinned in place, sew it down, getting as close to the edge as you can. The tricky part here is making sure you get both sides tacked down. If you find that one side is a little wonky, grab your seam ripper, pick out that part, and restitch.

When you're finished inspect your work and make sure your tape is tacked down nice and secure.

And that's it!! Slip it on over the gaping maw of your toaster and make yourself some tea. You did it.

This isn't an exact fit as the measurements of the cover are different from the toaster it's pictured on.  Below is a picture of one made specifically for my toaster so the fit is much closer to what I'm aiming for when I finally give this to my sister.

Thanks for sticking around--hopefully my directions were clear enough to get you through to the end.  If you think something is unclear, please let me know!  Catch ya later, alligators!  (I know you're thinking it, but I'll tell you right now that I already know I'm a big geek).

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Ho-boy! It's a blog!!

Well hello there world!! Long-time blog reader, first time blogger :)
Anyway, my name is Bethany and welcome to my blog. I'm a 31 year old sewist (my grandma was a seamstress--I'm a sewist because it makes me edgy). I also dabble in the yarn arts. This blog is an outlet for my crafty stuff, as well as those fabulous random observations that pop up now and then. I've been quite jealous of a few blogs for a looooong time and finally decided to take the hop and attempt it for myself. Hopefully you'll pop in every now and then and see what's happening in my world. It was a pleasure meeting you!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...