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Saturday, June 30, 2012

New Address!!

It's official.  Enchanted Wardrobe is relocating to 833 N. Cooper Rd in Gilbert.  I am SO excited!  I can hardly wait to get moved in and reclaim my house.  I like to nest and decorate, etc making this adventure so much more fun!  However it is TOTALLY overwhelming.  And it's blazing hot here.  And the dumb city of Gilbert has all this dumb stuff that has to be done before turning on the freakin power.  For now I've been pirating power from the outdoor outlet and running fans, keeping the doors open and... roasting.  The kids have been troopers and super helpful!  They're really excited as well.  Rachel is telling everyone how cool it is.

Yes, it's cool.  And exciting.  And adventurous.  And SO MUCH WORK!  AHAHAHAHAH!!!  After changing the locks and cleaning up most of the debris in the unit we started painting.  Ok, not really painting.  Priming as the unit is brand new and EVERYTHING needs to be done.

Here's how it looked the first day we were there.  The things that belonged to the neighbor were returned and the floors were swept and shop-vac'd several times.  Rachel is such a good hard worker!  She's a trooper and loved sucking up the floor crap.  

Ben was supervising...  See the monkey in the chair?  That's Bobo.  She was such a good girl the whole time.  

After cleaning the floor we went on paint run to Home Depot.  Seriously I spent hours online trying to figure out what color paint would be best for the store.  I don't want this to be a tradational costume shop - all goofy and tacky.  I want it a little classy and stylish.  Of course we will have a selection of little costume toys (like fake poo... who doesn't want that?) but it will have to all be displayed with class. It was a really touch decision, but I finally choose some paint. 
In this picture there are 20 gallons of paint.  After sweeping, vacuuming and painting part of the wall I noticed this. 
A blister.  That kept growing the more I worked.  Seriously gross.  But I kept working. 

and so did my little troopers!  It took us about 4 hours to paint this whole wall (it's 55' deep).  The top edge still isn't done, but probalby 2/3rds of the space is primered, and part of one wall has actual paint on it.  The windows are SUPER huge and HOT in the afternoon sun.  I aim to get the wall around the windows done as soon as possible and get the curtains up so the pounding sun doesn't pound as much.  (that and get the freakin air conditioning turned on...) 
Mid working we stopped for our first shop pizza delivery and our first dinner at the new space. 
Even Bobo enjoyed dinner.  It was still super hot!  We worked until around 9:45pm (with help from flood lights and Super Austin who came to help out after working all day).  And when we got home everyone was getting ready for bed and such when I walked by and saw this...
Little Aaron was SO tuckered out he laid down on the giant bear and fell asleep.  Shoes and all.  This was one of the all time cutest things I've ever seen.  

I thought since everyone got to bed so late that we'd get a later start today but not so.  Everyone was up and rearing to get painting!  The littles are such troopers!  First we stopped at Jamba Juice for a breakfast treat.  Then we went into Walmart for a couple more supplies.  Now, this has nothing to do with the shop or costumes or anything but... well... simply had to share.  The lady in front of us in line was loading her things onto the conveyor belt and her little baby was just all crooked and... well... you can see.  
Covered with a huge snot gob.  Here's where it's relevant :  I could no longer drink my Jamba Juice as the thickness of the Jamba made me think of the snot gob on this poor little guys face.  In fact I think it will be a long time before I can drink another Jamba.  Shudder.  

So that's that.  I hope that we can get most, if not all of the set up done this week and be ready to start moving in by the weekend!  Maybe...  one things for sure I could sure work FASTER if the power and a/c were on...  

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Backpack - Backpack!

Yes, it's true.  I have a backpack.  If you know me, you've probably seen me walking around with it on my back.  I fully realize that it probably looks about as lame as possible for an old crazy lady to use a backpack instead of a purse but I have 2 reasons.  And they're really good ones.  I first considered using a backpack instead of a purse because I have chronic and horrible back pain.  As a working/business owner and Mom my purses were often heavy and carried not only the things I needed, but also misc snacks and toys from the kids.  I noticed my back aching more after holding my purse on my shoulder for longer periods of time.  Secondly, as a working/business owner and Mom I like the use of both of my hands.  I like to get things done - and the less that I have to combat to get it done the better.  Thus the genius idea of the backpack.

The first backpack I was using was one we had laying around the house.  It is kinda big, and has a huge Mickey Mouse on it.  Don't get me wrong, I do love Mickey.  I didn't mind the Mickey logo most of the time - say making Walmart runs, or going somewhere with the kids.  BUT sometimes I was a bit uncomfortable.  I decided I wanted to try something smaller - and a little more stealth.  I found a little black backpack for $10 at Walmart.  What a deal - right?  Well, I got what I paid for because within a week the inside lining that separated the stuff from the front pouch and the big pouch was torn.  Perhaps it was my fault, as I would stuff the iPad into the big pouch and it was just a wee bit too small. So it was kinda torn up inside.  But I can be a little cheap so I kept using it.  Problem #2 started happening....  I live in Arizona and it's pretty hot here... and my backpack was made out of nylon and didn't breath.  This greatly enhanced the fact that I'm old and sweaty.  It made my back sweat and my clothes stuck to my back and it was just... icky.  While I could handle the damaged backpack I simply couldn't handle the sweaty back.  So I went on a search for the perfect backpack.  It couldn't be too big, but a little bigger than the one I was using.  It had to be made out of breathable fabric.  It had to be strong and have actual backpack straps on it - not drawstrings.  I wanted several pockets in it.  It also needed to be somewhat age appropriate and stylish.  Apparently I was asking for too much.  So I thought about what, exactly, I wanted and I made it.  Today.  Rarely do I take the time to sew for ME - though I really do have tons of things I want to make for me.  I just forget to make the time for me.  But I did today and I don't feel guilty not one bit!

Here's the fabrics all cut out and ready to transform into the backpack.

It looks like a pile of gobblie goosh, right?  

First things first, I prepared the pockets and then started making the smaller pouch that goes on the front.  Above I'm sewing the lining onto the outer pouch. When I was finished with that step, it looked like this:

Then I needed to cut an opening in the top to put in a zipper like this: 


Next I reinforced the ends of the zipper to make sure it stayed strong (above).  
Here's the inside of the front pouch with it's pocket.  I put the little paper there so you could see where the pocket was.  

And here's the front pouch attached to the front piece of the backpack!  Yay!  It kinda looks like it's going to eat you...  
It's hard to see in this picture, but I added pockets to the outside sides of the backpack.  This picture is one of the side pockets.  
I harvested the webbing and plastic hardware from the old backpack... which was upsetting to Rachel as she really wanted to keep my old backpack.  Up to this point it wasn't really stressful - I was just putting all the puzzle pieces together.  Here I had to rip apart the old backpack to use the webbing... it's a point of no return - and no messing up!  

But all is well!!!  Backpack is finished.  There's a hook strap at the top that I can pick it up with, as well as padded shoulder straps (with the adjustable webbing from the old pack).  Both pouches are zippered shut.  There's a larger pocket in the big pouch, two small pockets int he smaller pouch and 2 side pockets.  It's light weight, comfortable, breathable and big enough to hold everything I need to hold.  I'm pretty excited about my backpack!  It's a one of a kind original.  I may walk around town like a dork with a backpack but I really don't care.  I'm in less pain and I'm 2 handed functional so go ahead and laugh it up!  Because my backpack is better than your purse ANY day.  

Going back in time.... to yesterday when we had Peanuts fittings!  Here are some pictures of some of the Charlie Brown kids : 
Chuckels Brown





And here's Linus in the making.  It's finished now, but here I'm sewing the black stripes onto the red shirt.  :)  

I'm still making Snoopy, but when I get it done and on the actor I'll take pictures and post them for your amusement.  

Tomorrow it's back to the show, and everything else I need to finish... and clean up... This week we're having adult sewing classes in the Wardrobe!  Maybe they'll let me take pictures.......  

Friday, June 22, 2012

Oh Peanuts!

I can hardly believe another week has flown by.  And what an eventful week!  Another week of sewing classes is over.  I have such talent in my classes!!!  I wish some of these girls could just stay here forever and sew with me.  They're so cute and fun and just amazing!  I had one girl design her own apron and make it without a pattern!
Yes, she was busy doing something and I went over to check on her and this busy little bee was cutting the fabric and putting the pieces together and made this super cute apron.  Talent?  I think YES!  Another amazing student started classes for the first time on Monday.  It was the very first time ever that she'd sewn.  Anything at all.  This kid is pure talent! She can sew straight lines like no beginner I've ever seen (and better than many not beginners I've ever seen!) This was her final project this week.  This is after 6 hours of sewing classes...
She was too shy for me to take a picture of her face, but isn't this the cutest pillow!  And look how it all lines up!  Seriously this kid has great sewing things in store for her!  

Aside from sewing classes, I got hard to work on catching up on Charlie Brown.  With the kids home from school it is SO difficult to get as much done as I need to accomplish.  But I'm making a valiant effort!  Here's some of the makings of the Peanuts gang:
I made Violet first.  Because purple is my favorite color.  You can't tell in the picture,  but there's purple lace around the bottom of the skirt.  And a bow on the waist sash.  It's kinda a blurry picture... Sorry.  

And here's Lucy.  Now there's black buttons on the ends of the 3 strips on the top.  The edges of the sleeves and the collar have black ric rak on them.  It's super cute.  I'll try and snap some pictures on the actors tomorrow.  Oh snap!  I forgot to take a picture of Sally!  Ugh.  Tomorrow.... and beware - cuteness overload!!  

Once the girls were done it was onto the boys.  Chuckles was pretty straight forward and easy.  I made a yellow t-shirt with a funky collar and added the black zig zag in felt. 
Here's the finished product!  He has black short shorts, too.  :)  Not too short, but Peanuts short.  
And then Schroder!  And I have no idea if that's how you spell that kids name.  Seriously, who ever would name their kid Schroder? Good grief.  No wonder he was a piano master mind.  He had to do something to take his mind off of his name.  Anyhow, there is NO stripped jersey fabric in the world like what I wanted for this shirt.  (and Linus) So I did what any self respecting designer would do and I made it. I took the green jersey and added blue stripes (because I'm using black stripes for Linus, I chose blue for Schroder so they're not matchy).  The stripes are gross grain ribbon and actually came out rather nice!  Here's the finished shirt:
All of the boys have the same black shorts.  Tomorrow I will finish Linus (which will forever be tainted with Benjamin Linus from LOST - that crazy man)  and Snoopy!  I will also make a night shirt for Chuckles.  I'll do my best to get some pictures with actual people in them so they look better.  

AND  big news.  SO  it's not an official announcement or anything but there's a possibility that we may be relocating the Wardrobe!  Yes, sir we may have found our store front space... more details to come!!!  With this news, please send all monetary donations as soon as possible.... kidding... sort of...  

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

I'd Like to Thank the Academy...

Last night I was honored with another MET award!  I won for best costume design for Hairspray.  Now, it was super weird because I was the only designer nominated... so I was up against myself.  How embarrassing it would have been had I not brought home an award!  But I did, and I am very thankful to Mesa Encore Theatre and the beautiful cast of Hairspray.  They really made my job easy because they all looked SO good!
In this picture you can totally tell I have ambliobia.  (or however it's spelt).  I look cross eyed.  :/  

All in all it was a super fun evening!  If you're wondering what the best part of the night was - and I KNOW you are!  It was, hands down, when my table (aka the rowdy table) did the wave when I won. Austin and I had a great time with the wild bunch!  Do you know what else?  My friend, Joe Navan also won a MET award for Hairspray!!! Of course he did - after making 68 wigs!  Geesh!  Here we are with our awards. 

Yay!  I am so happy to work with such talent!  (and, seriously, it was a super hot day and I started glistening... ugh.) Do you know what ELSE?  Joe was also the only hair/makeup designer nominated  - so he was up against himself too!  Such a fun night!

I'll bet you're wondering how sewing classes are going!  Well, they're AWESOME!  I have 3 kids from last week (honestly - but don't tell any of the others - they're my favorite sewing students ever! So awesome!!)  And I have 2 returns from previous summers,  and 3 new kids.  The class is full of such fun girls!  So far (and we're only half way done) they made a purse (super cute ones!!) and started skirts.  Tomorrow they're going to knock out some pajama pants.  My advanced girls are making skirts and a dress.  Here are some pictures from class:
She's thinking, "why is the crazy lady taking pictures of us again?!?"

See this kid in the pink?  It's her first time sewing and she can sew straighter lines than I've ever seen a beginner sew! 

Maybe, if you're super lucky and I remember, I'll add some pictures of their completed projects.  

And, just so you don't think I'm taking it too easy... I started working on Charlie Brown today.  SO CUTE!  I'm super excited to make this show.  One reason is because it's such a small cast - and the other becasue it's a cartoon coming to life.  Once CB is delivered, I get to work on the PLANT from Little Shop of Horrors!  (along with finishing Princess Amerah's wardrobe and several other smaller projects)  I will be making sample leaves this week, and will post pictures!  They're going to be AWESOME!!  

That's all for now.  Happy Sewing!  

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Classes and Dresses and Talent, oh my!

I finally remembered to take pictures of my awesome sewing class!  I am SO proud of these kids!  They are so talented.  Everyone finished their projects (well, almost - one is close to done and she'll finish on Monday) and these kids are SO creative!  The beginners improved so much in just 4 days.  You could actually see a difference in their work as the days went on.  I am super excited that most of them will be in my other sessions!
This is what the studio looks like.  It is PACKED.  But everyone has a good time. 

Look what some of the kids made!  
This was her second project, and her FIRST time sewing ever!  She made this super cute apron!! 

Not only did Brookelyn make this awesome pillow, she also made the pajama pants she's wearing!  It was her first time sewing, too! 

This is one of my more advanced students.  She is AWESOME!!  She made this super cute polka dot pencil skirt.  I want her to hurry up and turn 16 so I can hire her to sew with me!  

I'll keep you posted on what we make next week. I'm pretty excited, I have some fun things planned!! 

Aside from classes, I worked on the pioneer dresses for Art Needlework Shop in Nauvoo.  I made 3 sample dresses.  They're more than dresses, they're ensembles. Each dress comes with a bonnet and bloomers.  2 styles have aprons.  All of them are high quality and super cute!  When we were in Nauvoo, I didn't see anything as well made or cute as these ensembles are.  I'm not just boasting about it - it's true.  That's one of the reasons I was so happy to make these cute little outfits.  Because in all of Nauvoo, there's nothing this cute! Until now.  So, if you're going to Nauvoo, stop into Art Needlework Shop and say hi!  
Shandi finished this cute little dress by sewing the little rosettes down the front.  This dress is seriously SO cute!  

This is  actually pink and purple.  The apron is off white with green and blue muted colored flowers on it.  The colors in the picture are SO off.   But it's still super cute! 

This is the dress Shandi was "wearing" above.  SO DARLING!  

And here's the last design.  All of them have ruffles and lace and extra cuteness.  I'll let you know if I get more orders for these adorable dresses!  

Until then, I need to get back on track with Princess Amerah outfits and Charlie Brown.  Keep and eye out for some excessive awesomeness this coming week!  I also need to make myself a new backpack... I might just show you that as well.  Unless it comes out ugly.  Then forget I even said anything.  
Happy Sewing!