Visit to Michael Miller Fabrics

I have a little blog collaboration coming up with the awesome people at Michael Miller fabrics so I got together with them in order to brainstorm and meet each other.  I will be sharing more about the collaboration itself soon but also really wanted to chat about the experience of a visit to Michael Miller fabrics.

Visit to Michael Miller Fabrics

I mean, seriously.  It’s Michael Miller! And, it’s me in their offices in the heart of NYC! It’s not every day that you get to glimpse the inner-workings of a fabric company.  So cool. This is me with Kait, the amazing woman behind the fantastic MMF blog, Making it Fun.

First of all, this place is in one of those old New York buildings with beautiful, creaky wide plank, wood floors.  The type that looks like any other building from the outside, with a doorman and utilitarian elevator.  This is one of the things I love about New York.  So many of its magical, inspiring spaces are hidden inside everyday-looking buildings.  It always feels a little bit like Dorothy in Wizard of Oz, going from black and white into technicolor.  MMF is one of those places.  It’s a big, open office crammed full of color and fabric.  They told me they often yell across the room at each other.  It looks like true, full-on constant action and activity.  It’s a very vivid place.  You can see the creativity seeping out of every corner. Ideas, fabric, paper…everywhere.

Visit to Michael Miller Fabrics

Visit to Michael Miller Fabrics

New ideas and collections and color, color, color seeping up out of everywhere.  It’s honestly a little chaotic and obvious that all aspects of making a collection somehow involve everyone around on any given day. Everyone is so super nice! It looks like a blast.

And, of course, the fabric.  I mean…the fabric.  It is everywhere and all over.  It’s under desks and covering one end of the room and under a massive cutting table.  Rolls and rolls of glorious, beautiful, super fun fabric.

Visit to Michael Miller FabricsVisit to Michael Miller FabricsI’m looking forward to sharing more about the blog project but enjoy these rolls of colorful goodness for now! I hope you can mentally roll around in all that yardage!

Baby Blanket Teddy Bear

Baby Blanket Teddy Bear

My oldest son, C,  turned eight a few weeks ago and it was surprisingly emotional for me.  Well, ok, I got emotional after the dust cleared.  I do not mean that figuratively; there was dust everywhere because having twelve kids play soccer and run wild in our backyard kicked up an insane amount of dust. But, by the time the party balloons were sagging and the house was strewn with bits of colorful wrapping paper and squashed juice boxes I got emotional.  Eight.  It’s so big.  It’s so definitively big.  It seems to have marked a moment for me when I stopped and noticed that his babyhood, the babyhood that introduced me to motherhood, was receding into the background.  Without a doubt.  I can only see it faintly in the distance and much as I am thrilled about the person he is growing up to be it’s hard to see it go.

One of my gifts to him was this baby blanket teddy bear.  Admittedly, he’s too old for teddies.  I mean, he still sleeps with his very special teddy bear but he doesn’t ask for new ones.  It’s all beyblades, legos and Pokemon cards.  I made the bear anyway and I made his patches out of one of his baby blanket.  This baby blanket teddy bear was made to commemorate the moment, more than anything.

Baby Blanket Teddy Bear

When I made the baby blanket polar bears for J, I knew that I would need to make one for C as well.  (And yes, they both had baby blankets with the same color and pattern! One in fleece, one in flannel.  Cute, huh?!)  The pattern for this bear is called Tagalong Teddy and it’s from the Betz White book Present Perfect but is also available for free (!) on Sew Mama Sew.  It was really easy to make, as is usually the case with Betz’s patterns, the instructions are clear and straightforward.  I also got to practice my embroidery…more practice than I wanted since I did a backward blanket stitch and had to REDO all of it.  Rookie mistake on my part.  Ugh. The white fabric is a soft, velour-like fabric that is super snuggly.

Baby Blanket Teddy Bear

Perfect for a little bit of snuggling from this boy.  He’s so sweet, this eight year old of mine.  He’s private and camera shy and the most amazing big brother.  I keep telling him he would make a great teacher, he can be heartbreakingly helpful.  He’s also ridiculously funny, stoic and easily hurt and so thoughtfully aware of the world around him.  More and more I’m aware that those stories are now his and not mine to tell.

I do think that he likes his new bear.

Baby Blanket Teddy Bear

Baby Blanket Teddy Bear

Baby Blanket Teddy Bear

Do see it? That tiny glimpse of babyhood?  It’s just barely there but I think I saw some. *sniff*

I’m also sharing another project on Betz’s blog today, be sure to check out my forest friends finger puppets! 

Small World Sewing : Music Box, Playtime and Abbey Jacket

Small World Sewing : Music Box, Playtime and Abbey Jacket

I am lucky enough to live twenty minutes away from the organic fabric company, Cloud 9 Fabrics and sometimes I get to sew samples for them!  It’s pretty awesome because their fabrics are just straight up amazing.  I was thrilled when they sent me the Small World fabrics from Rae Hoefstra to work with.  Thrilled! I mean, LOOK, it is so bright and colorful and it’s corduroy but lightweight corduroy.  It’s so perfect.  I love all of the prints, they remind me a bit of some Boden textiles except they are also perfectly Rae!  Cloud 9 asked me to make three things for them.  So for my small world sewing I stitched up a music box jumper, a playtime dress and an abbey jacket.  Mostly, I want to gush over this fabric but the patterns are really exciting, too and they deserve a review. Given that the fabrics have just been released AND it is Kid’s Clothes Week, it seemed a good time to show and tell. (more…)

Spring Break Stay-cation

2015 Spring Break Stay-cation

It’s been pretty quiet around the blog for the last week and a half!  My apologies about that. The boys had their spring break last week and after much debate we decided to try our first stay-catation.  This decision was made, mostly based on the sad state of our bank account after our cat’s surgery.  Um, cat surgery is pricy.  Super pricy.  You have no idea, unless you do and then you can relate. It’s a good thing we love her so much. (more…)

Betz White Sewing Collective :: Baby Blanket Polar Bears

Polar Bears made a Baby Blanket for the belly and ears! The perfect way to transform a special blanket into a special toy!  a happy stitch

Ever since I started blogging I’ve admired Betz White so I was over-the-moon when she asked me to be a part of her sewing collective this year (For real. Pinch me!).  My first project was making these polar bear stuffed animals. The details are all on Betz’s blog but what makes these guys super-extra-special is that I used baby blankets for the bellies and ears! Don’t miss the full post with more info on the Flurry and Fluffy pattern and the changes I made.

Polar Bears made a Baby Blanket for the belly and ears! The perfect way to transform a special blanket into a special toy! | a happy stitch

Disclosure: I was paid and given a free pattern but my opinions are always my own.

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