Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Gail K

Here is a little peek into one of my favorite stores in Atlanta: Gail K Fabrics!

Gail K Fabrics

I've been shopping around online for fabrics since I decided to take on the
Fall Palette Challenge. I have developed a good idea of what I want, but I'm having a really difficult time getting around to ordering the fabrics I have picked out, because, well - it's a risk and I'm afraid to commit! What if I don't like how the texture of the fabric feels? What if I don't like the way it drapes? What if it is too thick or too thin, or feels cheap!? What if the color is different in person than it is on my computer monitor? These are big concerns, people!

So, I went to Gail K today. Where do I begin with Gail K? For starters, it is a very special place. It is (as far as I know) Atlanta's only independent source for apparel fabrics which, when you think about it, is really quite a shame. We have a few independent quilting/craft fabric shops, but Gail K is a completely different animal, and it fills a very important niche. Inside, you have just about every variety of fabric you might need to make any article of clothing, ever. As you can see from my photo - the goods are stacked to the ceiling. While it can be intimidating to take on Gail K as a shopper, (you really should allow yourself a couple of hours to search through the stacks and shelves and bins) there is a method to their madness. Things are kind of organized, even though they don't seem to be at first glance, and the people that work there are very helpful and can usually point you in the right direction if you are lost.

My only complaint: their hours. They're closed Mondays. All other business days they close at 4pm, except for Thursdays when they close at 7pm. So, I think it might take me a couple more lunch breaks before I find all of the
exact fabrics that I want to sew with this fall. But, at least I'll have a lot of fun looking for them, right?!

I'm hoping to have a plan up soon of which patterns and fabrics I'll be using for
The Challenge. (You know, even if I haven't actually found all of the fabrics yet!) I'm really excited to get to the point where I'm doing some sewing, but I don't want to jump in too soon with a plan that is only half developed. Better to take it slow and be deliberate rather than rush in like a maniac with a pair of sewing shears in her hand...

Monday, September 12, 2011

Introducing: Acute Stripe in Fruit Pie!

I started shopping around online this weekend for fabrics to use in the Colette Patterns Fall Palette Challenge I am participating in. I found lots of prints in my color range that I might use, but my mind kept coming back to the Acute Stripe design I recently uploaded onto Spoonflower. I really wanted to create a color way of Acute Stripe so that I could use it to make a blouse in my fall wardrobe! So, I took a little time out and this is what I came up with...

Acute Stripe in Fruit Pie

You can see in the image on the right that I also I updated the scale of the design so that it is now more appropriate for use on apparel. In the larger scale, the triangles are each about 5.5" long which is really quite big and would work best for projects like pillows, upholstery, or draperies. In the new smaller scale, the triangles are about 1.5" long which makes the pattern more usable for clothing, quilting, or smaller craft projects.

Acute Stripe in Fruit Pie

I might end up creating a "medium" size somewhere between the two - just to explore the possibilities of the design. The scale of a print can dramatically alter how it reads visually.

The smaller version of Acute Stripe has been added for all of the color ways I had already uploaded. You can see them all on
my Spoonflower profile!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

2011 Fall Palette Challenge

I follow an amazing blog that is published by Colette Patterns called The Coletterie. They have issued a "sewing challenge" for their readers to create a fall color palette and use that color inspiration to sew a collection of garments for the season. I haven't done much garment sewing since I was in high school, and I figured if I wanted to get back into it, this would be the perfect opportunity!

I drew most of my inspiration from
Sessun's fall/winter collection for 2011. I just love the bold jewel tones they used together. The collection reminds me of the color block trend from this spring/summer, only in fall colors!

fall palette challenge 2011

Now, the next step will be to select the fabrics and patterns I want to use to make my clothes!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Cooler weather, calmer days...

I spent some time at my local craft store the other day gethering materials for a little project I am trying to pull together. I couldn't help but snap a few photos of plastic gourds, paper mâché skulls (!!!), and Autumn colored faux flowers that were all over the place. There is definitely a high cheese factor in any craft store when it comes to some of the seasonal supplies, but it's difficult not getting swept up in all the hooplah!

pumpkins, skulls, fall foliage

Temperatures have dipped down into the mid sixties this week in Atlanta which is pretty unusual for us this early in September. Everyone seems to be celebrating the cooler weather by wearing sweaters and boots while we have the opportunity. I have to try and rememind myself not to get too excited by the "arrival of Autumn" though, because there's no doubt that the heat will be coming back before the real thing is officially here. But, not to worry - it will be soon enough!

With these cooler temps I am also finding myself listening to different music than I would during the summer months. At the moment, that means a lot of dream pop and shoegaze with some singer songwriter stuff thrown in the mix. I found this new (to me) band Memoryhouse courtesy of YouTube and am in love with them. This song, Heirloom, is exactly what I've been in the mood to listen to as temperatures have dropped. I hope you enjoy it too!

Do your musical tastes change with the weather?

Thursday, September 1, 2011

My first date with Spoonflower...

I finally took the time to join Spoonflower a couple of days ago after years of dragging my feet! (Funny, how weeks turn into months that turn into years. Oops!) If you aren't familiar with Spoonflower, they are a company based in Durham, NC that allows their customers to print their own fabric designs digitally on demand. You can also order designs from other Spoonflower users, which is an incredible feature - and is so supportive of small independent artists and craftspeople.
I'd be honored if you'd mosey on over there and check out my profile. My first design is this translucent triangle stripe in four colorways that were roughly (very roughly) inspired by the seasons. It isn't available for sale yet, but eventually it will be - hopefully, along with some other work that compliments it! 

Acute Stripe in four colorways

I'm having a great time doing design work again, and have been shocked that my memory of how to use
Photoshop and Illustrator is actually coming back to me after being away for so long. The first time I sat back down in front of the computer to "play" I could barely remember a thing and was terrified that I might have to learn it all over again! Thankfully, so very very thankfully, that isn't the case.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Inspired by Walls...

My sister-in-law commissioned me to make some pillows for her to compliment a photo by Benjamin Walls that hangs above her sofa. She came down to Atlanta a few weeks ago, and we spent an afternoon digging through my fabric stash hoping to find some inspiration. We were able to come up with a pretty interesting scheme that went along well with her cerulean velvet couch and the photograph.

She wanted to do three pillows that would work separately, and together as a group. It was important to her that we kept an organic feel to the design. I drew a mock-up today to put my ideas down on paper, (or on screen in this case) and this is what I came up with:

The pillows will be made from four coordinating fabrics. I plan on sewing the two "major" fabrics on the top and bottom together, and then appliqueing the darker blue pieces over the seam.

Once the design is approved, I hope to get to work on making these pronto! I haven't done applique in a very long time, and I'm really looking forward to getting back to it!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Summer on the lake

A couple of weekends ago I ventured across state lines to a lake house birthday celebration with a bunch of my buddies. We had an amazing time - great company, and great food & drink. There was even a boat for tubing and jet skis! Here is where I mention that I am not so cool as to have ever ridden on a jet ski before - so I got to cross that off of my list of things I have never done! Woo hoo! (I love crossing things off of that list).

Now, that I am officially out of vacation mode and have been reinvigorated with rest and fun times, new creative projects will commence!