Buried Alive

June is always a really busy month for me with family obligations, travel, house chores, etc. Consequently, I have very limited time to "create." Not having the space to focus on my projects makes me realize how important this part of my life really is. It is my meditation, my way of centering myself. 

Since my time to actually "do" crafts is limited, I am using this fallow time to step back and do some planning. I keep my eyes open when I'm out and about and look for inspiration. During downtime in the car, I can read about possible new projects or surf the web for patterns and ideas. One of my favorite planning activities is finding out-of-the way places to source my materials - cool little online shops or even brick and mortar shops in a town we're passing through. All this research gets me excited about the projects that I have coming down the pike.

I thought I would share with you today some of the places I have been looking...and finding much inspiration....

Vintage Fabric Prints
Children or adult themed patterns from the 1930's have been calling to me. While I love the more modern prints I wrote about here a couple weeks ago, something makes me think that I need to make a project (or two) out of something old school. A quilt perhaps...or maybe just some summer-weight pajamas for little boys. It is possible that the advent of antique fair season is responsible for this inspiration.

I found this little company called Warm Biscuit that carry some really fun vintage kids prints. They don't have a ton, but what they have is intriguing. For instance, their Vintage Italian Alphabet fabric is just stunning.

This might have to become curtains in Little Bear's woodland themed room.
 For more grown-up projects, like quilts or a cute summer shirt for me, I have been peeking at calico. So subtle, so traditional...it harkens back to the depression era sensibility on my mind.

Calicos I found at Moda.
The world around me is suddenly brimming with color. I live in a valley and the nature surrounding my home is an endless source of ideas for placing unexpected colors together. Green matched with a violet...birds nest brown matched with robin's egg blue. It's all out there, waiting for you to notice it.

Pinks next to greens next to oranges...all in my backyard.
 One of the most wonderful things about the digital cameras is the exposure we now have to photography on the internet. So many people take up a camera and put their work out online for us to see these days. I have friends with formal photography education and thousands of dollars worth of equipment as well as friends with a point-and-shoot camera in their bag and a God-given talent for taking an amazing photo without all the frills. Their images inspire me, the colors especially.

A beauty by my point-and-click photographer friend Troy.
Books and Blogs
One of the things I can sneak in when I have a moment is reading. There is no prep time to dragging out a book or opening my laptop and clicking through to the bookmarks I have to some of my favorite blogs. I can get a lot of inspiration in 15 minutes.

One of my favorite bloggers (Meg McElwee at Sew Liberated) has written another book. I just ordered it yesterday (on the strength of the home-made teepee on the cover) and I can't wait until it comes in the mail! She has great patterns on her site for purchase and her blog is a super resource for sewing tips and tricks.

How could I not order this? I'm sure to be blogging about it soon!
I am a competent seamstress, but recently a very basic beginner's book called Me and My Sewing Machine jumped out at me at the library. This is the best book ever. It goes over the parts of your sewing machine and different sewing techniques (such as zippers or a variety of hems) all in plain English. Even someone like me who has been sewing for 20 (ahem) years can find this useful. It has gone on my must-buy list. This book has really motivated me to sew more often, stretching my comfort zone a bit more each time.

If you noticed, I didn't spend much time talking about knitting today...I guess I have summer fever!


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