Winter Classes are Almost Here …


{Sweet Holiday Pillow Cover by Cassie – Age 10}


This Fall was spectacular at Oh Sew Much.  With only 1 day for classes, we made the most of our time and created so many beautiful projects.  It is always so amazing to me the ability children have to just get something done.  I learn from the Littles every minute that I get to spend with them.  I think that the theme of this set of classes was “It is only as hard as you think it is” – and let me tell you, nothing is hard for these girls.

We have even more fun planned for the Winter.  With a new beginner sewing class and 2 mixed level classes, there will be fun and creative projects GALORE!  Check out the registration page for more info.  Registration opens December 15th and space is limited to 4 or 5 to a class.

Look for a few Christmas projects over the next couple of weeks to keep everyone busy during Christmas break.

It Really Is Magic

A few weeks ago, the Littles and I had an amazing sewing class using a little magic to make pillowcases.  We mixed and matched and mixed and matched again to come up with great combinations for our cases.  One very long seam, a couple shorter ones, and a lot of wonderful concentration sewing straight seams, and, voila, pillowcases were made.  A big thanks to Kerri at Sew Deerly Loved for the great magic pillowcase tutorial.  It is a big hit around these parts.

We had so much fun making these that the Littles and I came up with our charity sewing project for this session.  Every sewing session has a charity component – this means that the Littles and I come up with a project that we can make that gives to those who may not be as fortunate as we are.  Our Tuesday and Saturday classes came up with the idea of a Magic Pillowcase Marathon (MPM) for Inn From the Cold.

Inn From the Cold is a Family Homelessness Shelter that moves locations every single day.  It is one of the only family shelters in Calgary but, because it moves from place to place, it can be difficult to create a sense of home.  The Littles and I thought that if the children had a pillowcase of their own that they could take with them as they move around, that it just might feel a little bit like home.

Recruiting the Littles, moms, friends and family, we are having our MPM on Saturday, December 8th from 10 until 2.  We’ll make sure to take lots of pictures!

L xo

Whooooo Are You?


As everyone knows, I got the idea of starting a sewing studio after meeting Annabel, who owns Little Pincushion Studio (and Confetti Studio with Alessandra).  One of the first projects I saw on her blog were the sweetest little owls.  They became a “must do” for me.  So, taking a page out a beginner sewing book and inspiration from Annabel, we made these little guys last week.  I couldn’t be more proud of my Littles because these owls are just the bees knees.

These were all hand sewn by the Littles – I mean the whole thing – button eyes, the owl pillow, the tummy patch.  It may be that these girls are a little advanced …

L xo

Doing the Dishes


Remember when Martha Stewart sent me that huge box of craft supplies?  I had plans for that box, oh boy did I have plans.  And then something called “work” and another thing called “sick children” kept me from digging into that box.  Oh, and add “recover the dining room chairs” and “spray paint an etagere gold” to that list so neither my family nor my books needed to spend any time on the floor.

So the deadline drew closer and even though I can’t win because I am Canadian, I still wanted to put something together.  But after running on empty for days, I just had no idea what to use these amazing supplies for.  And then I opened my kitchen cupboards …

We have had our day to day dishes since we got married.  Don’t get me wrong, they are have served us well, but after 2 boys, multiple moves and all that jazz, there aren’t many left.  But I haven’t bought anything new because, like always, what I want and is out there, are two very different things.

So Martha Stewart Crafts came to the rescue.  And it was pretty fast (see above for why this is important … I have no time).  And the project came out exactly how I wanted and exactly how MS Crafts said it would.  And I am in love with the supplies I used and the full set of dishes I have.

Let me show you how I did it (and if I can pull this off, anyone can).

I started by gathering all my materials.  Dishes, scissors (my MS ones are super sharp and super long and I use them for everything), MS Crafts Multi-Surface paint (that really works on anything … including Grade 4 LA projects), MS Craft Stencils and washi tape.  I also had a pan of warm water off to the side to put the stencils in once I used them.

There are a ton of stencils you can choose from – Michaels has them all lined up on display.  I used the ones I was sent because I just loved them and they were perfect for the Project.  I am not going to lie though, I went and bought others after because they are just that good.

So my first step was to make sure that the plates were clean so I ran them through the dishwasher and gave them a quick swipe with rubbing alcohol.  Ready to go.

I took my plate, cut out the stencil I wanted to use, and placed it on the plate taped down with some washi tape.  Now, in all honestly, the washi taping it down thing didn’t continue for very long.  The stencils themselves have a little stick to them and because of the curve of some of the plates and bowls, taping just didn’t work.  And I wasn’t looking for these to be perfect … I was hoping it would turn out a little random.

And then it was time to paint.  I got out a piece of cardboard and squeezed a little paint out and started painting.  But rather than using a brush, I gave the MS Craft paint dabbers a try.  These dabbers are pretty much what made my project go so quickly (and look so good, if I do say so myself).

I stamped over the entire stencil doing by best not to go over and then pulled the stencil off while it was still wet.  And here is the great thing, make a mistake, wipe it off.  Don’t like how the stencil came out, go wash it in the sink, dry the dish, start again.  THAT EASY.

Because this was so easy and the Project was working out just as I had envisioned, I just kept going with painting more dishes.  And rather than sticking to the gold tones I had originally thought to use, I broke out the brights.  And I am not sure which I love more …

Switching between colours wasn’t difficult.  I just used one colour and the stencils over a few plates, put the stencils and the dabber into the pan of warm water, switch to a different colour, dabber and stencil and did some more.  When I started to layer the colours, I just waited 30 minutes until they were dry and then put the stencil on top and painted over.  Again, I tell you, it really is THAT EASY.

The dishes have to “cure” so you can leave them sitting for 21 days and that will do the job or you can put them in a cold ove, let it warm up with the dishes in it to 350 degrees and let them bake in there for 30 minutes.  After 30 minutes, turn off the oven and leave the dishes into cool.  My super way for getting that done was to do it right before I went to bed so I could turn the oven off at bedtime and leave the dishes in until morning.  Two nights later, two new sets of dishes.

And here is the best thing.  Unlike my old Wedgewood Weekday/Weekend dishes that cost a fortune which meant trouble for whomever broke them and the assurance they would never be replaced, these dishes are from President’s Choice (the same people bringing all that great JOE FRESH clothing) so if one breaks or I decide I don’t like my dishes, I can go get more, no problem.

I think that 8 of the dinner plates, soup bowls, regular bowls and side plates came to $60.  And while I used a ton of paint, I still have left over.  And while some of my poor stencils didn’t make it all the way through, I was amazed at how long they actually lasted.  I mean I used those stencils over and over and washed them over and over and they pretty much lasted until the end.

The other great thing about this Project is the gazillion colours you can choose from.  The kind folks at MS Crafts sent lots of paint but I would be lying if I didn’t tell you that I couldn’t resist buying just a few more colours …  The ones I used for my dishes were Party Streamer, Meadowlark, Marmalade, Surf and Lake Fog (which is the colour of my walls at home – love, love, love it as my new favourite neutral) and Champagne, Light Gold, Yellow Gold and Rose Gold (I couldn’t find plain old gold to save my life but it didn’t matter in the end because there were so many others to choose from).

So now I have new, awesome dishes and the ability to make more … And, as I was painting away, I filled my head with other MS Craft ideas like using the floresecent orange MS Crafts paint and the dabbers to decorate the trick or treat bags my little sewing friends made at the sewing studio last week, or filling up clear balloons with MS Multi Surface paint (and glitter, of course) in Halloween colours to give to the kids I listen to read (I volunteer as Reading Mum)  at my childrens’ school (instead of candy, which they get enough of).  And don’t even get me started on how I am going to change up the treat boxes MS Crafts sent and make some awesome cupcake toppers.

While I wish I had more time to put into the Project, I have to say that this turned out exactly as I had hoped.  I was amazed at how easy it was, how it didn’t really take that much time, and that the products I used did exactly what they said they would.  For someone like me, who tends to do projects over and over to get them right, having this go so well means I’ll be doing more.

L xo

Ta Da

{photography by Terri Champagne Photography}

My very good friend Terri came over yesterday and used her amazing photography skills and took some great photos of the Studio.  I am completely in love with the space and love how inspiring it is.  I think that Terri has capture the feeling incredibly well in her photos.  I can’t wait until the Studio is filled with bright, shiny faces.

L xo

Leanne + Martha = True Love 4 Ever

Right before I left for New York, I was asked by Martha Stewart Crafts to join a contest with MS Crafts and Michaels showcasing all of the amazing MS Craft product.  The very kind folks at MS Crafts sent a box full of goodies and it was waiting for me when I got home.  I have a million ideas and just don’t know where to start.  Since the contest closes in the middle of October, I kind of have to get on it.  You can see all of the amazing projects on the new Martha Pinterest board. I know some of the other people participating and I can’t wait to see what they come up with.

Stay tuned for updates … And if you have any ideas, let me know!

L xo

PS – The glitter yarn and neon glitter are my hands down favourite.  But you could have probably guessed that, right?

Light Reading …

Or how I spent some of my weekend …

L xo

For the Love Of …


{Paper Ball Chains by Dana Made It}

{Geometric Garland via Sparky and Marie}

{Sparkle and Crepe Paper Garland via Confetti System}

{Blanket Stitch Garland by Anna Maria Horner}

We have the sparkly, crepe paper ones in the studio and will have to try our hand at sewing the rest.

L xo

Itsy Bitsy

I am off to New York next week for another sewing workshop  … I have been to 2 other Heather Ross workshops in the last year.  One last Fall in New York and one this Winter in Palm Springs.  They are absolutely amazing, you learn ridiculous amounts, and you make really good friends.

{photo courtesy of MLE Knits}

Heather Ross is the fabric designer behind a number of great fabric lines – most of which I have, and will put to good use in the classes.  Her new fabric line is called Nursery Versery and it has a very cute itsy bitsy spider print.  I came across this quilt last week and am in awe.  Pretty much the sweetest interpretation of the nursery rhyme, in my humble opinion.  I have never done a spider web block but, without a doubt, it will be added to the list of things to try in the near future.

L xo

Up and Running


Class registration is OPEN!

L xo