Wednesday, October 06, 2010

on how I can't finish anything

Okay, that should be, "on how I finish a sh*tload of stuff, but can't get it together to blog about it."

I've been in an insane crafty mode for some time now.  Besides working on products for my business, I've had an overwhelming urge to make stuff for my kids.  Last night I couldn't fall asleep for the thought of the bean back toss game I want to build for them.  This will involve cutting, sanding, assembling, painting, and sewing, but I was so psyched about the idea I nearly leaped out of bed and started pulling out plywood at midnight.  So today, with the little free time I had, I pulled fabrics and sewed six bean bags.  I've been working on stuff like this for months.

Sometime during the summer I mentioned to River that when he was ready we could redecorate his room - swap out the decals and add some new shelving.  Little did I know my casual remark would turn into a full blown mission for him.  For weeks he talked about putting up huge dinosaurs on his walls and changing the paint color.  It got so bad he would climb out of bed at night complaining of being scared, "because I don't have any dinosaurs on my walls to protect me from monsters."  Geez, kid, you mean business.

So one weekend we got into do-it-yourself mode and took the old car decals down, patched and primed the walls, painted, went to the fabric store and made a batch of dinosaur decals.  I took photos of the entire process - EXCEPT FOR THE FINISHED LOOK!  All of that work - and it turned out great, I might add - and I keep from posting about it because I don't have the "After" shot.

And I'm too lazy to just take the damn photo.

So what follows are all of the many projects I've worked on - and finished - that don't have final photo representation.

Before the dinosaur redecoration, I got an idea that River and I should make a dinosaur habitat for him to play with.   He got really into it and insisted on including a volcano and meteorite to show the possible ways they met with extinction.  (The red and gold glitter were his idea - yes, my son is pretty fabulous.)

I was most excited to work on a paper mache cave with River.  He got really into it, and we had a blast making it.  But it took time to dry and in the mean time, I got some shots of him playing with the (mostly) finished diorama.

No cave, photos, of course.  But it's awesome, trust me.

Then came River's room redecoration.  Here are the patched walls, waiting for new paint.

And a half-painted wall.

Making the pattern for one of four dinosaur decals.

Half-finished stegosaurus.  And that's it!  I'm sure you'd love to see the walls, dinosaurs, and enormous new book/toy shelf, but sorry.  I can't be bothered.

Finally, here's the pattern for two bean bag chairs I made for the kids.   I was going to write a whole tutorial to put up on my design blog, but this is what you get.

A half-finished, inside out bag.  It rocks in real life!  I swear!

Just in the time since Lila was born, I'm sure I've finished a dozen blog-worthy projects, many lacking any photo documentation.  Think there's any chance an "in-process" design blog would take off?


A2665 said...

Hi, I was wondering what the semi-circle piece is for on the bean bag, top or bottom hole?
I was confused because I thought that bean bags were made with a circle on each top and bottom, Although I haven't been able and to find any other patterns or inspected any in person since deciding to make one, so I could be wrong.
What is the width where the long piece is tapered?
I'm assuming making one is simple, once the pieces are cut, but are there tricks any you've learned?

Summer Ryan Doyle said...

Hey there! I can't believe you're trying to make this pattern - you are a brave soul.

Okay, here's what I remember: I cut semicircles so that the bag would have an opening. I wanted an inner liner with all the beans held together (I made mine out of an old sheet), and the outer, pretty fabric bag to be washable. You could do 2 circles and sew the whole shebang together, but you won't be able to take care of any kiddie stains that way. Plus, working with loose beans is a PAIN IN THE ASS.

I put velcro on the straight side of the semicircles (fabric folded over and hemmed first). That's why they're not exact half circles - extra fabric to fold. I then attached the 2 pieces of velcro together before sewing the circle to the rest of the bag. So basically, I did use 2 circles. One of them just opened (this is also how you turn the bag right side out when you're done, btw).

I'm sure there's an easier way to do what I did, but that's the method I went with.

As for your width question - I'm not sure what you mean. With an extra 1/2 inch seam allowance, the measurements are: Short width 6", Wide width 14", length 21". Circle diameter 12". More specific than that you'd have to talk to me 2 years ago, when I wrote this post.

Disclaimer: as with all of my sewing projects, this one involved lots of trial and error. I basically guessed at the measurements and made them work.

Good luck!

A2665 said...

OK, thank you. The Velcro makes a lot of sense, I was going to do an invisible stitch on a regular pattern, but the velcro is a lot simpler. I am the same way with just guessing measurements until it seems right, but having a general idea makes it a lot easier.