Recently, someone at work heard about my sewing blog and asked me which project was my number one pride and joy. A simple question that should have had an easy answer, but… I was baffled that I really didn’t have an answer.
The first pathetic thought that came to mind was, “my most recent project.” Whatever my most recent project is – I consider that the “new, shiny toy” that I am currently taking the most pride in. But that’s a kind of lame answer. How could I not have one standout project that is my favorite?
The second, less pathetic thought that came to mind: my favorite projects are the ones that I have made as gifts that are actually being used out in the real world. Remember the the Mustaches and Elephants quilt I made for baby Liam some time ago? Well, Mr. and Mrs. Liam recently sold their house, and I got to see the quilt displayed on Liam’s crib in the photos on the real estate listing. That was pretty fun! It’s one thing for people to tell me they like the gift – it’s another to see proof that they like the gift.
I also regularly see my friend Joe’s “man bag” / toiletry kit in photos. Every time he travels, he sends me a pic of his bag in action!
I continued to ponder this question, determined that there should still be a clearer answer – which project is my pride and joy? I eventually decided that I have a bunch of favorites – but each a favorite for different reasons. So I decided to break my favorites down into ten different categories of favorites. Because I can never do things the easy way…
Favorite fabric combo: Brittany’s shoe-themed jewelry pouch. The shoes are already so cute, and the fact that pink polka dot lining matches the polka dots on the pink shoes? Perfection. Throw in the minty zippers and ribbon with glittery chevrons? Stop it. I’m in love.
Favorite pattern conquered:Katie’s Knitting Bag. Although the pattern itself wasn’t necessarily difficult, I do feel like it’s one of the most impressive products that’s ever come out of my sewing room. It’s made of canvas and has all sorts of nooks and crannies, including a custom appliqué and multiple zippers. This is the kind of bag I would buy. In a store. But instead, I made it! And I love that.
Favorite “selfish sewing” project: The Mickey Mouse Zip and Go bag I made for theme park usage, made from a pair of Mickey boxer shorts. I held onto those clearance boxers for such a long time, knowing exactly what I planned to do with them. I rarely selfish-sew, so the fact that I actually made it happen is so exciting. I love grabbing that bag every time I visit a theme park!
Favorite use of an odd fabric: Mom’s casserole carrier, which required Insul-Bright… the insulated stuff that’s used inside oven mitts and any other item that requires protection from heat. My mom really does use this casserole carrier to bring hot or cold dishes to her neighbors’ houses for pot luck parties. She is also quick to grab it from the drawer to show it off to her visitors when sewing comes up in conversation.
My favorite item simply because it’s just so dang useful, part 1: My earbud zipper pouch definitely gets the most use of anything I’ve ever whipped together for myself. I work in two separate office locations and I’m constantly traveling between them, which means keeping all of my laptop gear organized and portable is critical. I use this pouch to hold my earbuds, plus some other cords and chargers that I used at work every single day. Keeping them contained in a little zip pouch means they don’t get lost in the abyss of my work bag… which, trust me, really is an abyss.
My favorite item simply because it’s just so dang useful, part 2: My hanging laundry bag, made from an old shower curtain. I use it every day. And Winnie has never gotten into my laundry again… much to her dismay. 😉
Favorite decorative item: The Valentine’s Day bunting that I created as part of #SewMyStash2015. Why? I LOVE Valentine’s Day, I LOVE bunting, and I LOVE that I didn’t have to buy any fabric in order to complete this project. It was made from a bed skirt! Plus, it’s also one of my first serger projects. AND it’s really cute. That helps. 🙂
Favorite problem-solving project: Liam’s Mustaches and Elephants quilt! When Liam’s parents had conflicting opinions about the theme for the nursery – mustaches, or elephants – I loved that sewing could easily bring BOTH of those themes together into one, magical quilt. Problem solved! I have never loved sewing customization so much.
Favorite boring alteration: I have made quite a few alterations to my clothes since first taking the plunge, but my favorite still remains the very first – turning flared jeans into skinny jeans, and also hemming them to the appropriate length. I wear these jeans all the time! I still stand by my declaration that alterations are SO FREAKING BORING, but they are SO FREAKING REWARDING that they are totally a necessary evil in the sewing world. I love the fact that I was able to customize a pair of jeans to my liking instead of just dumping them in the giveaway pile. I feel powerful AND resourceful!
Favorite sewing memory: I had so much fun working on the donut paper piecing for Katie’s cross-stitch bag a few Christmases ago, and I get warm fuzzies when I think back to the time I spent making it. I worked on it over the Christmas/New Year’s holiday, when I had some days off from work and Katie was out of town. I enjoy the process of paper piecing because it is just mindless enough (but not too mindless) that I could run episode after episode of Gilmore Girls in the background while I worked. What’s happier than days off of work, sewing all day long and binge watching Gilmore Girls? There was probably some wine involved too, let’s be honest.
So, that is probably the longest answer ever to “What is your favorite project? What is your pride and joy?” But at least it’s finally an answer… and a lot more satisfying than the “deer in headlights” look I was probably sporting when first asked the question.
What project is YOUR pride and joy??? Sewing related or not, tell me about it in the comments!