Friday, November 14, 2014

Sewing Room Art

This week was a momentous week in my household, our art was hung.  Having art up really makes a space your own, right?  Especially when the vast majority of the furniture isn't yours.  It has made a difference in how I feel at home.  The biggest impact I think is in my sewing room.  I love how it turned out so much that the red carpeting isn't bugging me as much.  That is saying a lot!  (On that note, I think I have it figured out.  The issue has been bunching- both the carpet squares and the carpet have bunched up when I've laid it down.  But I haven't used a rug pad, which I think is the missing factor.  Maybe I'll pick one up this weekend to see if it makes a difference?)  Enough of me rambling, I'm sure you want to see how it turned out!
As it has turned grayer and colder, I have been missing Brazil more and more.  I thought that I would bring some of my favorite parts of Sao Paulo to Kyiv.  You may even recognize some of these photos from previous blog posts (Perhaps this one and this one?)  All the pictures are from either the Sao Paulo Botanical Gardens or Batman's Alley.
I had our picture hanger hang them on every dark blue stripe- it made the spacing much easier.  He and I went back in forth on how to ensure they were level and spaced correctly top to bottom.  He did pretty well I think.  Below the pictures are bulletin boards that I covered with batting, white cotton and then ribbon from Turkey.  You can't tell in this picture that the background of the ribbon is turquoise.  (I would take another picture, but it's late, so you'll just have to trust me on that!)
Here is the other side.  I split up both the bird and the flowers below them to keep all the pictures square.  When I was in college, my parents bought me a medium format camera- as I was a fine arts photography minor, and I've loved square photographs since.  To be honest, it really made me happy to create these photographs.  It really forced me to figure out who the newest version of photoshop works with my printer.  My printer is ten years old, but still prints amazingly.
Originally my plan was 16 photos on this wall, but I decided to use four in the living room, leaving me two photos short in the sewing room.  I had the carpenter put in the nails for the final two, which are currently at the framers.  I should be able to hang them up next week.  Now, I know you've been asking why would she have someone come and hang her pictures, when she can do it herself. 
This is why.  We don't have power tools, as we move from country to country and the voltage is different in every place.  (Also we have weight restrictions on what my work will pay for moving.) Well, that and I thought that the walls were concrete, but they're merely plaster, so I could have done hanging that just required nails.  However, my job will send out someone one time to hang all the artwork, so why not take advantage of it.  My sewing room has limited storage, so I needed a place for my patterns.  They are now above my sewing table and easily accessible, meaning I might actually put my patterns away.
This is a more accurate picture of how it looks.  After the carpenters left, I realized that I missed putting up one of my favorite groups of pictures.  In either my first or second photography class in college, the assignment was to make a mini-collection with photos from one square block.  This was D.C. in the late 90's/early 00's, so back when Chinatown was just one block and before the revitalization of the area.  I wrote a sentence in photos- Forbidden beauty equals enlightenment. 

Its a good reminder to find a little bit of beauty every day.

I have been progressing on coat, albeit, very slowly. I thought I had finished one front, and was about to move on the second, when I realized, there are too many layers to fold the lining back neatly.  So I set it aside and started the belt- trying the bound buttonholes there differently, but still using both fabrics.  That didn't look as nice as I thought either, so I went back to the drawing board, and decided to just use one fabric for the button holes.  I ripped out all the ones on the front, and redid one.  I think it will work.  I haven't actually sewn it in, but you can fold the fabric even with the masking tape still on the back of the button hole.  Hopefully this weekend I'll get some sewing done.
I'll leave you with one last picture- I moved all my sewing books.  They now have a storage spot in the closet, rather than on the windowsill.  This will save them from my lovely darling son.
How do you decorate your sewing room?  Do you store books in odd spots?  Let me know in the comments, I love looking at and hearing about other people's places and how they are utilized.  Until next time, happy sewing.


  1. Hi Nicole, I love your blog! I'm an EFM just arrived to our first post abroad and ordered my first sewing machine. What books do you recommend out of that stack for enthusiastic beginners? I've mostly been working on home decor stuff (for my own blogging fun, but hope to start some garments soon. Also pattern sources? Any advice would be awesome...

    1. Thank you! There are so many sewing books out there for newbies, and most of them are awesome. One I've been debating about buying is Love at First Stitch by Tilly and the Buttons (blog here Sewaholic's Sewtionary is also supposed to be good- her patterns are great ( Two that I own are Colette Pattern's book (; which is pretty awesome, I've sewn half of the patterns up) and Gertie's first book (; which I wouldn't recommend as the writing is great, but the patterns leave something to be desired). I would check out the blogs and the patterns and go with one that you really like the style esthetic as the information in all of them are similar.