Thursday, June 2, 2011

My Weekend as a Warrior


In one of my crazy weekend warrior projects I created this little beauty. An amazing mama I know had created this larger version (right) for her daughter and I absolutely loved it. I saw this as motivation to create my own just on a smaller scale.

I am always looking to other mother’s for inspiration for cards, crafts and more. As a mother, I am constantly seeking ways to make my life a bit easier and with each child I’ve gotten a bit more savvy at shopping for key infant items. In an effort to combat the wind and weather for our baby, I attempted to create my own modified solution.


My project began at Fabric Crush. This store offers up high-end sewing, quilting and craft supplies. It was amazingly organized with fabrics from classic to kitchy in richly colored fabrics. Coordinating solids were available in every color of the rainbow as well. The sales associate was so helpful you would not believe it. She juggled me and several other customers to the fullest with an array of issues. From selecting choice fabrics for me to choose from, helping to fine tune a way more skilled seamstress’ designs and checking us all out without missing a beat were second nature to her.

There are your run of the mill chain fabric stores that are wonderful and convenient. I use them weekly for my own paper projects. Fabric Crush is markedly different. This store is a specialty shop that hones in on luxury fabrics and sewing materials so that it’s devoted patrons are able to create rich, quality handmade pieces as well as receive researched advice and ideas from skilled staff. Think of it as a clothing boutique for the sewers. You will find current and luxurious textiles and tools that will alone inspire you to create something fabulous and useful.

I have been able to sew for years but I would not say that I sew. The difference is very distinct. I do buttons and repair rips... or not.This is seen as poppycock to the true seamstresses & sewers of the world. I know those talented few who can create their own patterns and cut out multiple layers of material with their own special machines. Spending hundreds of dollars on fabric and materials is nothing for them. I am so envious mostly because they do something that I feel is amazing. Creating your own clothes has a history rich with experimental textiles, designs, and styles. From loincloths to leggings, these items are created and when it is done by hand, there is something so much more meaningful. This is the first piece that I’ve created for one of my children and I was able to sew this little beauty for my family’s newest addition on a whim. I do not keep fabric in my home but
I saw this as an opportunity to make a sewing investment and I purchased a pretty nice pair of sewing shears by Gingher. These are about an average pair of shears as professional pairs can run you $150 while everyday brand name shears will run you a mere $7. I purchased mine for the list price of $36 from my local fabric store. Though more expensive than online retail outlets, I was paying for convenience and didn’t mind at all.
The entire carrier cover cost me less than $25. This project took me less than an afternoon to create and we use it everyday now pretty much making the cost null. I loved getting back down to Earth by delving into an old hobby and I bought fabric for another one that is waterproof but sadly, it is sitting in the corner.

Ok. I am dropping a bomb here. Sadly, Fabric Crush is closing their current retail space and moving the whole operation online. Smart move. In today’s economy, the one thing that you can count on is yourself. Buildings and land are being sold at the chopping block as these times are changing. Relocations and job changes are forcing owners to liquidate all of their assets leaving tenants taking the punch with higher rents. In light of the that, smart business owners are cutting overhead to focus on what’s important. Amazing customer service, high quality items and the knowledge to go with it. All of these basic necessities for retail business can be implemented in an online marketplace. There really is no need for a physical marketplace if your products have the ability to do commerce solely online. Fabric Crush has all these major factors and I will truly miss such a great space but will follow them to their new internet retail marketplace.

The upside? I don’t have to pack the crew into town to shop for luxe fabrics which saves a ton on gas! Go green & shop locally!

The doors to the retail store will be closing June 10, 2011. If you are in the area they are located in the historic Wallingford Center Building in Seattle WA.

If you are not in the area, don’t fret. Just go online to check out their blog for insightful articles and access to their online shopping site.

Many thanks to my grandmother for teaching me to sew all those years ago. Also to M.K. for the carrier cover inspiration. You gave me the courage to turn my intimidation into something fabulous & useful for the baby.