Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Not according to plan

There have been some changes in my plans for the new house. The downstairs consists of the living room, a dining room through a large archway and the kitchen. And that was my original plan for those three rooms.

Then, a few weeks ago, I was at a friend's house and I noticed that her dining room did not have a dining room table. Instead it had a couch, a desk, and all her bookcases. And on my walk home, I thought, why not?

In our current living room we have seven bookcases, all full, and my desk. I really don't want those things in the new living room, because it'll make it feel too crowded, and also because I want my desk out of direct earshot of the television. It's hard to write or do anything when the news is constantly shouting in the background.

And I know better then to try to turn down the news.

Table top?
So, a book room. An office. A library, a den, a sitting room, a parlor, a salon. One of those things, we haven't yet decided what it's going to be called. But the next thing I will be putting up on the Facebook internet yard sale will be my dining room table.

The new house is smaller, and we need to use the space wisely. Having a separate room where the books can live and where I can flop on a love seat and read while Mario watches TV in the other room is a far better use for the space than keeping it as a showcase for some nice furniture and a place to eat twice a year. At first I was a little iffy, but now I'm actually quite excited about it.

The problem: what to do with all the art currently on the dining room walls. It's a big room, with high ceilings, and even if the new room wasn't mostly being filled with bookcases, there wouldn't be enough wall space for all this. So some of it stays, some of it goes, and for one large piece, I have an idea.

The room in question
Is it totally weird that I want to put legs on this piece and turn it into a coffee table in front of my new love seat? It would take up too much wall space but I think it would actually make a really cool table. The glass is thick enough that using it as a table top, and maybe putting the occasional sock feet on it, won't break anything.

I'm going to give it a shot.  I might even have something around the house, in the attic or the basement, with legs that could be frankensteined onto it. Stay tuned

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Kitchen capers

I've always been a nester. A decorator.  Someone who likes to fiddle and fuss with her home until it's perfect. Except my perfect isn't perfect, it's comfortable

I like old things, pieces that have some history and life to them.  And I like color.  Lots of it.  And prints.  Nothing will make me crazy faster than white walls.

The new house has all white walls.

But these aren't bad; it feels like the previous owners, an older couple, left me a lovely blank slate to start with. 

Take the kitchen.  It's dated. It's probably the tiredest room in the house, but I like it.  The layout is very comfortable for the way I cook. It's big enough for a table and chairs and two of my vintage freestanding cabinets, and the existing kitchen cabinets are all in really good shape.  They're just dark, and make it feel gloomy.

Enter paint, my favorite thing.  Cabinets will be lightly sanded, and painted cream to match my vintage ones. New hardware.  Walls are going to be a warm squash/orange color called "guppy."  I'll reuse my current curtains and some of the art, and I think with very little money or effort, this will become a bright, cheery room where I will love to spend time.

My current kitchen, much as I adore it, looks out onto the alley and gets no direct sunlight.  These photos were taken on New Years Eve in the afternoon and are still bright.

Oh, and that light fixture?  Its days are numbered.

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Third time's the charm

After the house fell through, there was another one we liked.

Turns out they got an offer on that one while we were walking through.

This is house #3. Actually, it's about house #12, but the third serious option.

It's just big enough. 1200 square feet.  Roughly half the size of our current living space.

What color wine goes with panic?

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Book sale

So, packing. Packing sucks.

Books are easy to pack, but heavy, and I have far too many of them.  I'm culling the sewing shelves first, and what appears here are either duplicates, unused for far too long, or not likely to be used and I'd rather they found a new home.

All books priced are priced to sell.  Photos and links are from Amazon, so you can read more about them and see current pricing.  Shipping will be via media mail, and I'll let you know the cost when you claim the book.  Discounts will be given for multiple book purchases.  Payment via PayPal only.

Contact me via email at karen6790 @ msn . com (without all the spaces) to let me know what books you want.

Famous Frocks, Sara Alm & Hannah McDevitt.  Includes 10 patterns.   Excellent condition.  Hardcover. $10.

Making Trousers for Men & Women, David Page Coffin.  Includes CD.  Excellent condition.  Paperback.  $7.50 SOLD

The Bishop Method of Clothing Construction, Edna Bishop.  Revised edition.  Some edge wear, but good condition overall.  Fabulous resource; I have an extra copy of this that isn't leaving my shelves.  Paperback.  $5

Cool Couture, Kenneth D. King. Excellent condition, signed copy from PatternReview weekend 2010 in Philadelphia.  Paperback.  $7.50

Designer Bead Embroidery, Kenneth King.  150 Patterns and complete techniques.  Excellent condition and gorgeous resource, but my embroidery doesn't tend toward the beaded and it should find its person.  Paperback.  $10

Pattern Magic, Tomoko Nakamichi.  English version.  Excellent condition.  I've stared at this book until my eyes crossed, but I know I'm never going to make any of these garments.  Paperback.  $10 SOLD

Fashion Designer's Directory of Shape & Style, Simon Travers-Spencer and Zarida Zaman.  Very useful resource, very good condition.  Paperback.  $5 SOLD

Fashion Design Drawing Course, Caroline Tatham & Julian Seaman.  "Principles, practice & Techniques, an ultimate guide for the aspiring fashion artist.  Retired library book with stamp in back cover and sticker on spine.  Very good condition.  Paperback.  This one is a freebie-with-purchase (and shipping), or for cost-of-shipping only.  SOLD

Bridal Couture, Susan Khalje, intro by Claire Shaeffer.  Fine sewing techniques for wedding gowns and evening wear.  Slight edge wear, but very good condition otherwise.  Hard to find.  Paperback.  $20 SOLD

Secrets of the Couturiers, Frances Kennett.  Very good condition.  Some of the fashions are dated, but others are vintage, and all the techniques and illustrations are solid.  Hardcover.  $5 

Fine Machine Sewing, Carol Laflin Ahles.  Machine methids to get the look of hand finishing and embellishing.  Paperback.  $7

High Fashion Sewing Secrets from the world's best designers, Claire B. Shaeffer.  A step-by-step guide to sewing stylish seams, buttonholes, pockets, collars, hems & more.  Retired library book, a few stamps and a label on spine, but the book is sound, with only a bit of edge wear.  The styles may be a bit dated, but the information is great.  (It's Claire Shaeffer, after all).  Hardcover.  $7

Art Deco Textiles - The French Designers, Alain-Rene Hardy.  A beautiful reference of 1920s-1930s French textiles.  Paperback.c  $5

Patternmaking for Fashion Design, Helen Joseph Armstrong.  Classic textbook.  1987 edition, dated clothing but fantastic instruction.  Some writing in book, but does not obscure the information.  Definite wear on spine and edges.  Hardcover. $10

In Vogue - 60 years of celebrities and fashion from British Vogue, Georgina Howell.  Significant edge and spine wear - I've had this since the 1980s - but the pages are still clean and tightly bound, and it shows just about every person and outfit worth seeing that ever appeared in Vogue.  Oversized paperback.  This is another freebie-with-purchase (and shipping) or free with cost-of-shipping.   

Fashion Illustration - Figure Drawing.  Another good fashion illustration reference.  Another freebie-with-purchase (and shipping) or free with cost-of-shipping.  Hardcover.

The Dressmaker's Dictionary, Ann Ladbury.  Ex-library book, a few stamps and clear protective cover.  Good vintage general reference book.  Hardcover.  $3 SOLD

Singer Sewing Book, Mary Brooks Picken. 1954 edition.  (Amazon listing is for the 1949 edition, this has a slightly different cover).  Ex-library book, clear plastic protective cover.  Contains lots of vintage fashion illustrations, along with technical drawings and home dec instruction.  Hardcover.  $5 SOLD

The Complete Illustrated Stitch Encyclopedia, Crafter's Choice.  No dust jacket, but book in excellent condition.  A great reference, but a very common and inexpensive one, so another freebie-with-purchase or for cost-of-shipping only.

BiblioCraft: Using Library Resources to Jumpstart Creative Projects, Jessica Pigza.  Excellent condition.  Gorgeous, inspirational book.  It's done its work here, time for it to move along.  Hardcover.  $7

The Complete Book of Sewing:  Dressmaking and Sewing for the Home Made Easy, Constance Talbot.  Vintage 1943 first edition, great wartime fashion illustrations.  Minor wear to the spine and a little to the bottom corners.  Hardcover.  $15 SOLD

The Art of Sewing - Traditional Favorites, Time-Life Books.  1974 book with fabulous 1970s fashion illustrations.  Chapters include: A Brilliant Renaissance, A Legacy of Sewing Techniques, Fabrics by Patchwork, and Traditional Needlecrafts.  Lots of photos and technical illustrations.  Hardcover, with split to the spine but no loose pages.  This is a freebie-with-purchase or cost-of-shipping book.

Please, for the love of all the sewing gods, take some of these off my hands.  Email me directly with your shopping list, I'll mark books off as they sell.