Sunday, January 20, 2013

I Hack Ikea

When we bought the new furniture for the living room, we moved the old click-clack sofa into my sewing room.  We thought that the sewing room could do double duty as a guest room.  Unfortunately, the sewing room doesn't really work as a guest room as there is a streetlight just outside and the curtains don't keep out much light.  Also since I sew and dress in there, it's always a total disaster.

Since we weren't actually using it, the old click-clack really had to go!  Once it was gone I was so happy.  I hadn't realized how much space it took up in the room and how the tall back had blocked so much light from the windows.  Plus it was a yellowy off-white and kind of dingy and didn't really do much for my vision of the room.

I did still want a chaise or a small sofa where I could sit and do my hand-stitching or even just lie in the sun and read a book. I definitely wanted something mid-modish and bright white to go with the curtains and the trim around the windows.  I did a lot of internet shopping and everything I liked was just way too expensive.

We decided to take a look at Ikea. I thought that they might have a cheap white sofa or a couple of smart footstools that I could push together.  Maybe even a low cabinet like the hemnes that I could just cover with pillows and use as a window seat.

Well, the affordable white sofas were boring and the ones I really liked were not cheap.  I didn't see any of the footstools I liked in white at my Ikea and MD said that I would surely break the hemnes if I sat on it too often.

I had just about given up and we were on our way out, walking past the cafe and the children's furniture.  Just then I saw a lady sitting on a child's bed playing with her kids and I had a brainstorm.  I could make a small sofa out of the Gulliver!

So I bought:

Gulliver Bed Frame $139.99

No Ikea Hack has ever been easier!  

First I assembled the Gulliver, which was super easy.  To make it into a sofa, I just left off the front piece that is supposed to keep the kids from falling out of the bed.  Easy, done and done.

Then I cut up the Malin Blad duvet cover.  I made a simple envelope big enough to fit the Vyssa Vinka inside and stuffed it in.  This was the hardest part because the Vyssa Vinka is covered in a soft fuzzy fabric which clung to the Malin Blad something fierce.  I was quite a wrestling match to get it inside the cover and I hope that I never have to take it off!

It isn't really a sofa without back and side cushions so I knew I'd have to make something.  The rest of the Malin Blad would provide the fabric, but I wasn't exactly sure how I wanted to make them. An online search for vintage 50s and 60s pillow patterns gave me some ideas. This one in particular caught my eye, but who has $25 for a pillow pattern?

Based on that pattern, I decided that bolster pillows would be the best and easiest and another online search gave me this link from E-How.  I cut out one large and two small rectangles to make the pillow bodies.  To make the bodies all I had to do was fold the rectangles in half and stitch the long end closed.

Even though I had lots of Malin Blad left over, I decided that contrast tied ends would look very cute and very vintage.  I dug around in the stash and came up with just enough white twill and white satin ribbon to finish things off.  A few minutes at the sewing machine and two bags of batting later, the pillows were complete and my sofa looked like this.

I love it!  It is exactly what I wanted, and it's very comfortable. It tucks right into the space by the window without dominating the room like the old click-clack. It's a great addition to my little sanctuary and a perfect place to hand sew or read or contemplate upcoming projects.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

So, 2012 Happened.

Where have I been? Well...

We went to Viva Las Vegas again, which I did not enjoy nearly as much as in years previous.  I don't know what it was, but the whole event felt "off" to me and I just couldn't quite get my groove on.  I am not sure that we'll be going this year.

While we were at Viva we took a few days to go out the Grand Canyon...

via historic Route 66.

While we were in the forest, I met Smoky the Bear.

In August, we to Tiki Oasis, which we both thoroughly enjoyed.


Then in October I visited the ancestral village in Spain with my sister.

We managed to get the house painted right before the winter rains started.  Dig that crazy color!

To finish the year off,  we went to the Great Dickens Christmas Fair.  As usual, we couldn't quite commit to the straight up Victorian London costuming thingy.  This year we went as American Wild West Show Performers.  It was great fun!

...and that's about it for 2012.  In between all that fun stuff I've been sewing and not posting which is a problem because I can't remember which patterns I used to make what!

My goals for 2013 are:

1.  Sew only from the stash. This shouldn't be a problem because the stash is completely out of control!
2.  Post at least once a month.
3.  Post everything I sew, whether it's a success or not.
4.  Sell my unwanted vintage on Ebay/Etsy so that I have room for the stuff I love.

So tell me.  What have YOU been up to?  Any goals for the New Year?