When it rains, it pours! Those who were in the path of Hurricane / Tropical Storm Irene know this all too well. And my prayers go out to those who have experienced flooding and power outages, and to those who lost loved ones to the storm.
Metaphorically speaking, I've recently been deluged by requests for custom orders -- 7 in one 24-hour period! That is not a complaint!! Quite to the contrary, I am DELIGHTED to work on custom projects, and I hope to do more as the holidays approach. They get my creative juices (and adrenaline) flowing. And I feel more of a connection to the buyer when we are co-creating something "just right" for a special person or (in one case) a big new couch in need of lots of soft, comfy pillows. But the urgency of special projects, and the need to hunt down the right colors, fabrics, etc., can derail a lot of other plans -- like regular blog posts -- and sleep.
I'm still waiting for special order fabrics from four different suppliers for the pillow projects, but I did finish a special order walker caddy for a very special grandmother. The buyer and I exchanged Convos on Etsy, then emails with photos of possible fabric combinations, then sketches of a preliminary design and photos of the work in progress. Consistent with the Etsy trend toward monograms and personalized items, this buyer requested her grandmother's name be embroidered on the front of the walker bag. http://www.etsy.com/blog/en/2011/from-etsy%E2%80%99s-merchandising-desk-september-2011/
My Janome QE sewing machine has a lettering mode. Although the size and font options are fairly limited, it's a fun feature. After several experiments with fonts and threads, I finally chose a script font with metallic dark red thread. I wish the letters could have been a tad larger, and the spacing a tad closer, but overall, I think it will add a nice personalized touch.
I also experimented with piping as an accent for the walker bag pocket. I learned that my serger does NOT like to chew through 6 layers of home dec weight fabric and two layers of piping -- which was what I had at the pocket junction for both side seams. I broke a needle, which fell into the lower part of the machine, unthreading my upper and lower loopers. Thankfully, it did not require a trip to Husker Sew n Vac for repair. If I use piping again on a walker bag, I will stagger the height of the pockets and trim the cording in the seam allowance before serging.
My final learning experience was applique. Note to self: Do not use home dec weight fabric for smallish applique pieces.
Since my fabric shipments for the next wave of custom orders won't arrive until after Labor Day, I have a little window of calm (like the eye of the hurricane) to celebrate my hubby's birthday and play with linen.
Have a safe and enjoyable Labor Day weekend!
LeAnn aka pasqueflower