Award Season

Not to sound like a broken record, but you gals make me feel so lucky to be a part of your community – you’re welcoming and inspiring and just all around wonderful!  These blogging awards are such a fun way to share the love – and receiving one makes me feel like doing cartwheels down the hall.  I recently received two awards, so I wanted to do a quick post to answer questions, etc.

Amy at sewamysew nominated me for a Liebster Award!  Amy is one seriously creative and talented chick – just check out her Peony and her rockin’ Elvis print scout tee, two of my favorites!

liebster

I was also named in Brooke’s Very Inspiring Blogger post!  Brooke’s blog, Custom Style, is inspiring and always full of helpful tips and tricks.  In her most recent post she shares where to find her favorite (affordable!) tracing paper – go check it out!

veryinspiringbloggeraward

Since I did a Liebster post not long ago where I nominated other blogs, I thought I would just quickly answer Amy’s questions – because that’s such a fun part of this whole process!  And don’t forget to check out Amy’s post to find some really fantastic blogs that you might now know about yet.

Amy’s questions were:

1. Why do you sew?

Two big reasons: 1) I love the alone time that sewing offers.  It’s such a great way to unwind and de-stress.  2) I’ve developed expensive taste in RTW clothing.  Sewing gives me the opportunity to take inspiration from big designers and create my own, customized, affordable version of those garments.

2. What gets in the way of your sewing time?

Being a wife and having a full-time job definitely cuts into my sewing time.  Cooking, cleaning, grocery shopping, laundry, errands….I honestly can’t remember the last day that I didn’t leave the house at least once to run some sort of errand.  I need to plan ahead so I can have an un-interrupted day of sewing soon.  I deserve it by golly!

3. What is in the background when you sew?

Either Pandora radio or reruns of a TV show or movie that I’ve watched a million times so I won’t be distracted – Firefly reruns are most common.  Shiny!

4. Project you are most proud of?

Until a couple of weeks ago, this would have been my Settle Down dress.  Now it’s my Mom’s housecoat.  I love using vintage patterns and this one fit Mom like a dream without any alterations at all!  I loved getting to use two coordinating fabrics, and those sleeves were gorgeous…it just turned out exactly as I had envisioned, which is not always the case.

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5. Biggest project fail?

Faux leather skirt.  Leather-printed upholstery weight vinyl forced into tons of pleats…enough said.  I still can’t believe I talked myself through this entire project, refusing to admit defeat until the very end.  Aye!

6. Tea or coffee?

I’m assuming we’re talking hot beverages here, so COFFEE.  I can’t survive without my morning cup-a-joe.  I never developed a taste for hot tea, but being a Texas girl, I was raised on sweet iced tea!

7. Sewing aspirations or goals?

Better seam finishes.  I always rush through seam finishes because they just don’t interest me – then I hate that they’re not done properly.  But…if I were to be completely honest here…my REAL sewing aspiration is to make an exquisite, intricate evening gown.  That’s what really gets me excited and inspired…I just have no need for one so that will have to wait!

8. Favourite tool?

The waxed tracing paper that Susan Khalje mentions in her Couture Dress craftsy class.  I always hated tracing paper until I found this stuff – it’s a dream to work with.

9. Favourite pattern?

This is a tough one.  I’ve never made the same pattern twice so I can’t say I have a “go-to” pattern.  I really enjoyed making the Sonja dress and the Minna blouse though, and I intend to revisit both of these patterns in the future.

10. Describe a happy memory that tells us a bit about you?

The first thing that comes to mind isn’t one particular memory, but a collection of them: memories of my childhood, growing up in the country: spending my days climbing trees and riding horses and playing outside with my brother – never hearing traffic or police sirens, just birds chirping.  I didn’t know how lucky I was back then!

11. Who do you want to win The Great British Sewing Bee final next week????

Yikes!  Since I’m so late in answering this one, I suppose I should say Ann 🙂  I did grow very fond of Ann – how could you not???  But Lauren’s accent had me entranced, so I was honestly rooting for her after Tilly went home.

veryinspiringbloggeraward

Now, The Very Inspiring Blogger Award Rules are:

  • Display award image on your blog page
  • Link back to the person who nominated you – go to Brooke’s blog, Custom Style, now – GO GO GO!  You’ll be so glad you did!
  • State 7 facts about yourself
  • Nominate 15 other bloggers for the award – I’m going to send you to my Liebster post and my blogroll on the side of this page for great blogs.  I don’t want to single out 15 because I follow so many more than that and they are all inspiring!  (yes, I realize this makes me a chicken and no fun at all, and I’m ok with that)

Ok, 7 facts about little old moi:

  1. I am ambidextrous.  I write left-handed…sports-related actions are done right-handed…I can sew, paint my nails and apply makeup with both hands.  It’s a quirk that definitely comes in handy!
  2. My parents had always planned to name me Kacie, but when I was born they suddenly changed their minds.  I spent the first two months of my life as Kelly Renee before they decided it just didn’t fit, so they had my name legally changed back to their original plan.
  3. My hometown has a population of 1,500 people.  We have one stop sign, a post office, and a general store which is now quite famous for their steak dinners on weekends.
  4. I now live in Houston, the most heavily populated city in Texas and the fourth most populous city in the United States!  Culture shock much?
  5. When I was a child, I had a pet sugarglider named Clairie.
  6. Growing up I basically watched two types of movies: black and white musicals with my Mom, and westerns with my Dad.  My friends are constantly disappointed at famous movie references from my childhood years that I should know, but don’t.  I’m constantly disappointed that they don’t know who Ginger Rogers is….
  7. I’m runway trend shy.  It takes years for me to jump on the bandwagon for trends, and some I’ll never accept – rompers, for example.  After the age of three, the only one-piece outfit I’ll be wearing is a dress, thank you.

Whew that was more difficult than I expected.  Thank you again Amy and Brooke for naming me in your award posts – you girls are fantastic and I am THRILLED that you like T&C!

Quick progress report: My Elisalex is finished and just needs to be photographed.  I have two Laurels that are half-way done (but won’t be finished in time for the contest, drats!) and I’ve purchased the fabric for my Gatsby dress.  Keep an eye out for these posts soon!

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I’d Like to Thank the Academy…

By “Academy” I mean the wonderful, inspiring, creative, sweet-as-sugar sewing blog community!

Before I explain why I’m giving an acceptance speech, I’ll give you a quick update on where I’ve been lately.  I decided I would take on two projects at once, thinking it would keep me inspired on both of them and would increase my sewing productivity.  I was wrong…very wrong.  Instead, I am just un-motivated to work on either one.

Advance 2170 - Mom's Birthday Gift
Advance 2170 – Mom’s Birthday Gift

So close to being finished!

 I am supposed to give Mom her birthday gift this weekend, and it is still in SEVERAL pieces, so it will take a miracle from the sewing gods to finish it in time.  And I can’t finish my Elisalex until I finish Mom’s gift because…well…I can’t have a completed dress for myself which has no deadline and an incomplete gift for my Mom which absolutely DOES have a deadline.  I’m sure I would inherit bad karma from that scenario.  So I’m kind of at a stand-still on both projects right now.

In the midst of my sewing hiatus, a super exciting thing happened. ..

I was given a Liebster Award by the very talented Katy at Sleek Silhouette!

the-liebster-award

This is my first ever blogging award and I am absolutely THRILLED to have received it!  I’m so honored that Katy reads (and enjoys!) my blog.  Incidentally, this virtual award makes me happier than any award I’ve ever received in my life.  I’m positively river-dance-happy right now.

Katy’s blog has inspired me in so many ways.  She’s incredibly talented and creative, and I hope to one day finish my garments as perfectly as she does.  She makes the perfectionist in me stand at attention and salute!

The Liebster Award is meant for new bloggers who have less than 200 followers – it helps get the word out about them.  Katy’s post has some phenomenal blogs mentioned that I just discovered thanks to this award.  Go check them out!  They’re amazing!

With the award, there are a few rules: 1. Answer the 10 questions that were asked by the person who nominated you. 2. Nominate 10 new bloggers that inspire YOU.  3. Ask those bloggers 10 questions.

Katy’s questions were:

1. How did you get into sewing in the first place?

~It actually started with a Halloween costume a few years ago.  I wanted a Renaissance-ish skirt and decided to make it myself.  My mom taught me the sewing basics as a child, and I was confident that I could learn the rest with the help of the internet.  While I did complete the skirt, we didn’t get to celebrate Halloween that year so I never wore it!  It’s since been gutted for parts…  But that skirt ignited a passion in me for sewing.

2. What is your favourite part of sewing?

~My favorite part would have to be the initial planning stages.  The creativity rush is so much fun!  Planning something beautiful and knowing that you can make it happen – it’s awesome.

3. Have you tried designing your own clothes, is this something you’d like to try in the future?

~My first few garments were actually self-designed and self-draped/drafted (even though I didn’t realize it was called draping or drafting at the time.)  They were so much fun to make!  Unfortunately, they weren’t very well executed since I was so inexperienced, so I haven’t gotten much wear out of them.  Now that I’m more skilled, I would like to go back to the raw creativity of creating my own designs.

4. What has been your favourite moment since starting your blog?

~My favorite moment would have to be the first time I received a comment from a blogger that I had followed and admired for a long time.  She was one of the reasons I started blogging, so having her comment on MY humble blog was thrilling.  Second favorite?  Receiving this award!!!  (Seriously…this makes me feel like a rock star!)

5. Is there anything challenging that you haven’t made yet but would like to? (mine would be tailoring a jacket)

~Mine would also be a jacket!  I actually bought a pattern, fabric, and supplies to make a jacket and then chickened out before I traced a single pattern piece.  Tailoring just seems so meticulous and time-consuming, so I’m not sure I would enjoy it…but I still want to try!  It’s actually on my list of forget-me-nots.

6. What make are you most proud of?

~I’m most proud of my Settle Down dress.  I spent a LOT of time on this – two muslins, fittings, couture techniques (underlining, hand-basting, hand-stitching, hand-picked zipper, etc.)  Also, the fact that I was able to re-create a dress that I loved using pieces of several patterns was really satisfying.  It kind of broke my heart to give it away!  (Does that make me a bad person?  Oh well)

7. What make are you most embarrassed by?

~No question…my faux-leather skirt.  What a disaster!  How did I convince myself that upholstery vinyl would work as a pleated skirt??

8. What is the nicest compliment you’ve received for something you’ve made?

~Whenever I hear “Where did you buy that?  Wait, you MADE it??  I want one!” I just feel really great.  The fact that something I made looks professional (on the outside at least…don’t peek inside.  Finishings are my kryptonite!) is really encouraging.

9. Do you have any aspirations for taking your sewing further, such as starting up a pattern label, opening a shop?

~I don’t think I have enough creativity or patience to start a pattern label, and I’ve recently realized that I’m too selfish to spend time sewing just to sell my creations to other people, but I do have an idea for a sewing business.  I’m too afraid to talk about it with the public just yet since the idea is still in its infancy (I’d hate to jinx it!) so I’ll just give a simple “yes, someday!” to this question.  Muahaha!

10. Are you a perfectionist or a ‘get it done’ sewist?

~I’m a hybrid!  I’m a perfectionist in all aspects of my life, so that carries into my sewing.  But I get very discouraged when a sewing project takes weeks to complete, and by that time I just want to get it done.  I have a rather gruesome inner struggle when I get to that point because I know I won’t be truly happy with the garment if I cut corners just to finish it sooner.  I’m trying to work on my patience and learn to enjoy the process as much as the finished product.  Not there yet…

Now to pick 10 new bloggers to highlight!  I used Bloglovin as my source for following numbers.  I realize that some of the bloggers I’m about to name have already received a Liebster award, so there’s no pressure to follow all of the rules again.  Just consider this a shout-out because you’re awesome and have inspired me in my own sewing journey.  I’d also love to hear your answers to these questions if you have time!

  1. Mabel Makes – Stephanie is the epitome of elegance.  She is super talented and has amazing style – I am so envious of her sewn wardrobe!  AND she knits like a pro.  AND she lives in Ireland!!  Total girl crush going on here.
  2. Custom Style – Brooke is another incredibly talented seamstress with years and years of experience.  She could make anything…with her eyes closed…and probably with her hands tied behind her back.  Yeah, she’s that good.
  3. Gjeometry – Catja is a new sewist, but she’s already created some really amazing garments!  She’s crazy creative, has impeccable style, and is all around inspiring!  And she has the smartest kitty in the world.
  4. Country Girl Couture – Country Girl Couture is a fun, sassy sewist with great taste and style.  I love her “Things that Tick Me Off” posts…because honestly…we girls love to vent to each other right?
  5. Musings of a Seamstress – I introduced Sarah in my last post, but I also wanted to send her this award.  She’s inspiring in so many ways!  And she made her wedding dress.  Anyone who does that is a rock star in my book.
  6. Wearing History – I’m fairly new to Lauren’s blog, but I’ve already gathered this: She’s CRAZY talented, has a huge love of vintage fashions, and I would gladly step into an alternate universe where I suddenly had access to her closet!
  7. Vintage or Bust – She’s a Nancy Drew fan and has a career in costume design….enough said right?!  I’m always excited to see her latest creation.
  8. Threaded – As a member of the Mood Sewing Network, I’m fairly certain that Haylee has over 200 followers, but Bloglovin’ said 180, so I’m including her.  Has this girl got style?!  Holy smokes!  Her “finished project” photos look like they belong in a fashion blogger’s post of favorite new designer clothes that they’re dying to buy.  She’s absolutely phenomenal.
  9. The Little Tailoress – Ami’s blog is another one that’s new to me, but I am hooked.  I don’t think I’ve ever seen someone who dresses better than Ami.  I mean honestly…even celebrities on red-carpets who were dressed by over-paid stylists don’t come close to touching this girl.  She’s flawless.  Oh yeah, and she makes the most exquisitely tailored clothes I’ve ever seen.  So…you could say I’m a fan.
  10. Ruffles Gazebo – This is another blog that I’ve recently discovered and immediately fell for.  First of all, who couldn’t love the name of this blog?  And Ruffles is one seriously talented gal.  Go check out the wedding dress she made – breathtaking!!!

Alright, my questions for you lovely ladies are:

  1. Do you do most of your fabric shopping in local stores or online?  If online, do you have a favorite website?  (I’m always on the hunt for good fabric stores online!)
  2. Which new sewing skill are you most excited to learn or perfect?
  3. Is there a sewing skill that you’ve just never been able to get the hang of?
  4. Do you remember the first sewing blogger that made an impact on you?  (Mine is Gertie – I stumbled upon her horsehair braid tutorial while Googling sewing techniques.  Hers was the first sewing blog I ever read, and I’m so thankful for it because it introduced me to this amazing community.)
  5. Is there a type of garment that’s currently trending (either on the runways or in the blogging world) that you have zero interest in wearing or making?
  6. In three words only, how would you describe the style of garments that you’ve sewn?
  7. In three words only, how would you describe the style of garments that you’ve purchased?  It will be interesting to see if these are the same three words as questions #5 for everyone!  (For me they’re not…that might be a post in the future…)
  8. What was the first sewing project you ever created?  Do you still have it?
  9. Is there a movie or TV show that you think has particularly inspiring costumes?
  10. Who’s closet would you most like to raid?  (Celebrity? Blogger? Friend? Anyone)

It’s really difficult to come up with 10 questions, but I can’t wait to see how everyone answers.  Thank you again to Katy for this award – you’ve made my day month