Sunday, August 29, 2010

what does fler mean???

(From left to right 2006: Flan, Rosie "Rosella", Kera, Heather "H", and me Erika/fler)

Recently people have asked, "What does fler mean?". They will pronounce my nickname as "fleeerrr". The nickname comes from adding "FL" to the front of my name, Flerika. So, if you shorten it, you get "Fler" (pronounced: flair). 

(From left to right 2010: Kera, Flan, Steph "Foxy", and Heather "H")

How did I get the nickname? When we were in college, five girls lived in a cozy townhouse on Jenkins Rd. in Chattanooga, TN. One day, our friend James, out of no where named me "Flerika", Kristi "Flan" and Tressa "Flecka". We thought it was roaringly funny at the time in a way only James could make us laugh. Our names have stuck since.

We've had various versions over the years: Flerzy, Flanahan, and Flecka-lecka-hineyho. 

Though years pass and geographical distance grows, true friendship does not notice...we still call, email, laugh, plan trips and keep in touch regularly. I am blessed beyond measure.

Cheers, the rest is history....

Thursday, August 26, 2010

fabric, fabric, fabric

It's clear...I am in trouble.
I think I may LOVE fabric patterns.....

From Joann Fabrics

I told you......BIG TROUBLE!
Now, it's important to note...follow the WHIPSTITCH link to right of my blog. Insanely cute fabrics! Kera told me about and I haven't quit learning since starting to follow Dana's blog. Dana shares great links and FAQ's on her blog. This is how I learned about Whipstitch. I just received a MAJOR fun bundle of fabrics this afternoon.

Monday, August 23, 2010

What I learned this time....

Hello again my dear friend.
I have just finished my second project and this apron taught me some good lessons.

First, test your bobbin and top stitch tension on a piece of scrap fabric before you begin your project. I guess a pro would not do this each time, but for the novice (that would be me) just might save you some seam ripping time. Note to self, lol. Make sure the top and bottom of your test scrap have the nice stitching your fancy store bought clothes have. 

Second, don't fight Shirley. Lets face it, she's lived longer than I. Trust she knows what she is doing. I learned that I need to feel & guide the fabric move through instead of fighting the direction. Pockets and I have not quite built that loving relationship yet, but we ARE going to get seam rip at a time.

Third, when making ties, before you turn them right-side-out, slightly trim the fabric on your corners. This allows your ends a better chance of looking square and clean when you turn them right-side-out and iron. 

Happy threading!

the fler 
(pronounced flair...wink!)

Sunday, August 22, 2010

...and has the button to match

Over the years, I've saved all the spare buttons which came with my clothes. You know...just in case. Rarely, has "just in case" been needed, but I still held on to the buttons. I have always thought, "Well just in case I need a match on something else." A girl can never REALLY know right?

"Just in Case" has arrived..........

I now have a purpose for these little treasures! I hope to find each a home on an apron one of these days. And now, if I have a clothing item which needs to be laid to rest, I will make sure I hang on to those cute little guys.

 Just in case.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Meet Shirley and Her Friends

Meet Shirley.
Shirley is my new friend loaned to me from mom Reiner. Shirley is teaching me how to sew. 

I have learned a few close "friends" of Shirley are a MUST. The iron will keep your patterns and material flat. I also feel like ironing each hem, fold or anything which might help stitching is key. Takes a  little extra time but it's worth it!  A seam ripper is my best friend since I'm a complete novice. Helps remove those mistaken stitches. Pins and pin cushion....ahhh...well, the pins keep the ironed areas in place and helps keep fabrics together. Pins and a good pair of scissors are essential when cutting out your fabric from the pattern.

Last thought....KNOTS KNOTS KNOTS! Finish all your work so it does not unravel. You can use a straight pin to hide your knot in the seam so no one can see it. 

Above is a preview of my next project. I've only done one apron, but I feel the need to make the pattern even more my own. I can't give too much'll just have to tune in to see what happens.

Threads of Fler

My name is Erika. My friends call me "fler" (pronounced like flair). 

I've always loved aprons. I guess partly because I can be messy in the kitchen and the apron helps me look cute AND keep my hands clean. I'm often mesmerized by the cute designs Anthropologie or local artists will come up with to spice up the basic apron. For the last several years I've been wanting to learn how to sew with aprons being first on my novice agenda.

My dear and creative friend Kera began sewing a year ago. Now that I think about it, maybe a couple years ago...time seems to fly by.  She blogs about her creations and I'm often inspired. I just love all her ideas and projects. I found myself always saying, "One day I'll learn."

Aside from the fact that I have zero point zero of the tools to sew, I'm not really sure why it has taken me so long to try? My mom made all our clothes growing up and is an amazing seamstress. My Aunt Drinda is a magician around sewing machines. My mom Reiner also has the magic touch. Perhaps I was afraid I would not be as good and find my art to look more like a home ec class gone awry. 

My husbando travels quite a bit. I often find myself lost in the house wondering what to do. My mother-in-law knew my boredom and knew my interest in wanting to learn to sew. One evening she dusted off a spare machine, which is older than myself, and took it for a ride to our home. This machine has the original manual and all the working pieces (suuuper cute!). This machine is wonderful and works so well. Our dining room is now "where the magic happens". 

The week "Shirley" (lets give the sewing machine a name) came to our home. We picked out a simple pattern, fabric, some accent pieces and thread. I also received a kind gift of sewing essentials (sharp scissors, seam ripper, ruler and fabric marker). Mom Reiner kept a few steps ahead of my work making her own apron to help me along since the pattern instructions weren't the easiest to follow.

After MANY calls to my mom and a few visits from mom Reiner, I ended up with my very first creation above. 

Threads of Fler was born.