Saturday, December 31, 2011

Messenger Bags for Men in Steel Gray - Back in the Shop

Last June I lamented about using the last of my favorite gray hemp/cotton fabric which I used for my Gray Steel Hemp/Cotton/Canvas Messenger Bags...(It Happened this Week). 

Well as I was perusing my favorite online fabric supplier's website, I spotted it. No big announcements, no parades, no shouting from the rooftops.  Just a small thumbnail down at the bottom of the page.  Gray Hemp/Cotton was back in stock. 

There were 75 yards available, now there are only 45 yards available.

Back in the shop: Gray Steel Hemp/Cotton Messenger Bags & Gray Steel Market Bags.

A great messenger bag for men, it comes in two sizes, one will accommodate at 15 inch laptop, the other a 17 inch laptop. 

And for women, another best seller, my market bag is large, carry everything in this bag, great adjustable strap for over the shoulder or across the  body.

Needless to say, I've been sewing.  Oh happy day.

Monday, December 26, 2011

It's the Most Wonderful Time....

....of the year...

We spent Christmas Eve dinner with the family at Aunt MaryBeth's house this year.  Can there be anything better than feeling crisp cold air, a wonderfully decorated house, great food and an evening of laughs?

Yes, Christmas Day Dinner and finally a family photo that my sister Alex states, "we've been waiting years to take this photo."

Happy Holidays!

Friday, December 16, 2011

Studio Madness

It's that time of year.

I am catching up on Holiday orders so its been a bit quiet on the blog lately, or should I say, I have been a bit of a slacker with keeping up on my blogging.   Not only has the blog been neglected, but my Studio as well.

I usually pride myself in keeping my Studio fairly organzied, but during this time of year, not so much...

Bags in various stages of completion, straps, lining and etc just laying all about....What a mess.

I'll be back after the holidays, a few more orders to ship before DH and I head North for Christmas in a few days.
Have a wonderful holiday.


Sunday, September 4, 2011

New Messenger Bag

Just in time for back to school, I decided it was time to use the few yards of my Amy Butler's Soul Blossom's fabric collection.

I made this Messenger bag with a heavy brown cotton canvas for the exterior and lined it with a print from Amy Butler's Soul Blossoms -  Bliss Temple Tulip Azure.

This pretty print is also used on the outside flap. The heavy canvas exterior and the double stitching used for both interior and exterior seams for make this a large and durable bag.

A very large messenger bag - big enough for a 17" laptop, which you can find here.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Just a Few of My Favoirite Things Treasury

A quick thank you to DistInk Designs for including my Tapestry Clutch in her treasury titled:
 ....Just a few of my favorite things....then I don't feel so bad.  

Are you searching for a summer clutch to take you into autumn?

Made from a lovely cotton print from Valori Wells Cinnamon Tapestry Collection in beige, orange and brown and an eco-friendly 10oz canvas cotton fabric  interior.  The clutch is finished with recessed zipper to keep all your valuables safe.  Perfect for evening parties with your favorite maxi or summer dress or great with a pair of jeans.

You can purchase this item in my shop: HMMills


Saturday, August 6, 2011

DIY Cork Bulletin Board

A few months ago I moved my studio into a larger room in my house.  When I started putting the room back together, I decided not to use my old bulletin board which was about 20x30 as I have limited wall space and wanted to hang my thread racks.  I was finally inspired to use some of those wine bottle corks and two smaller Ikea frames to create a smaller bulletin board.

To create your own Cork Bulletin board you will need:

  • Some type of frame(s) to hold your corks together
  • Wine bottle corks
  • Glue (I don't think regular glue is strong enough for this project, I was thinking about Elephant Glue but i expands or hot glue.)  I ended up using some marine glue DH provided. 
  • Wall Mounts
  • Hand Drill
  • Patience

First I removed the paper backing from my frames... 

Next, using a hand drill, I attached two wall mounts that I picked up at Home Depot.

Next is the fun part, arranging the corks in a pattern. I found it's much easier to layout each row first as corks tend to be different sizes and I wanted a snug fit. This is much easier to due without glue.

Once I was happy with the layout, I attached a strip of glue to each cork and pressed into place.

At this point, the process is the same, arrange, rearrange, add glue, press into place and repeat until you are complete.

To help set the corks into place, I laid a few heavy items on top of the board while the frame dried overnight.

Ta da...

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Outdoor Pets

This is Godzilla.

We noticed him last year hanging out by the front door.  Every now and then while working on the landscaping I would catch sight of him running across the property.  Lately, he hangs out by the side of the house on the landscaping stones. I’m not sure what type of lizard thing he is, but he’s definitely cool.

And then there is this one...he has no name...but he lives in the trees with the birds.  I'm sure they are thrilled...

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Summer Reads

The Help - Kathryn Stockett 


Ode to a Treasury

I've been a bit busy this month, but did want to stop and do a shout out to my fellow Etsians for including some of my items in their lovely treasuries:

My Daisy Flower Handbag with Bamboo Handles appears in LalitasGemmes' Shop Till you Drop! Treasury.

 My fellow Carried Away Team member RetoolSF created this Come Get Carried Away Treasury featuring my Zippered Wristlet in Yellow & Blue.

...and then there is my Spring Clutch Bag in Lantern Bloom in Sublime Threads' Lantern Bloom Treasury.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Morning Sunshine & A Smaller Market Bag

Oh how I love the way the morning sun streams into my studio.

On this particular morning, the sun provided the  perfect light as I work on making a smaller version of my Pleated Market Bag.

After much delay (and a little procrastination), I finally had the chance to use the sage/beige linen fabric that I purchased from one of my fabric shopping adventures a few months ago.

And I have to say I that I love the look of this smaller version, as I think it will make a perfect summer accessory for your summer dresses or with a great pair of shorts.

Now while I do say it's smaller, it's still roomy enough to carry all your stuff..but to give you a better idea of the size of this Linen Market Bag:

The top opening is 101/2"; the bottom length is 12"; it's body height: 12 1/2" and comes with a adjustable strap that goes from 26" - 47" in length.

You can purchase this bag from my HMMills' Shop here... 

Monday, June 20, 2011

Patience - Treasury

 Oh boy, I am feeling the love, another item made it into another treasury.

A fellow shop owner has included my Canvas Flower Handbag in a new Treasury...Patience

(That's my bag on the far left in the third row.)

My Canvas Navy Blue with Flower Handbag is pleated and constructed in a heavy navy blue cotton canvas and lined with a pretty cotton print.  The interior has two pockets (a zippered pocket and an slip pocket). The outside is accented with a handmade flower constructed from the same fabric and simple blue button and a nickle rectangle ring on one of the handles. A perfect tote to carry all your essentials.

Please also take a moment to visit her lovely shop Bindu Glass

Sunday, June 12, 2011

It happened this week...

Although there was a brave effort in searching fabric stores both online and off as well as fabric warehouses - it happened this week - I  used the last of my favorite dark gray hemp/cotton fabric when a customer purchase the last Hemp/Cotton Messenger Bag in Gray.

I knew it was coming months ago,  my fabric supplier inform me they had discontinued carrying the hemp/cotton in gray earlier in the year.
As the months went by, my bolt of gray hemp dwindled until I was down enough fabric for one messenger bag and one market bag. The market bag sold a few weeks ago and now as I am sewing the last messenger bag - I keep glancing over the sad small pile of fabric scraps. 

The last remains of my favorite gray hemp/cotton fabric.


Friday, May 27, 2011

For Her - Treasury

My Tapestry Clutch seems to be popular these days... may be since spring and summer have finally arrived....or the fact that this clutch goes wonderfully with a spring dress or with a casual pair of jeans.  It's easy to carry as well, either under your arm or hold with the strap.  Small, but still large enough to carry your essentials.

A fellow shop owner has included my springtime Tapestry Clutch in a new Treasury....For Her...

Please also take a moment to visit her lovely shop Pink Parchment Soap

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Experimentation - Flowers

My multiple trips to NYC this winter/spring had me longing to see some blooming Spring Flowers.  Here in Florida, my perennials have been blooming year round, but they are hardy for Florida's heat so they are not as pretty or as dainty as the flowers up North.  Sigh...

Since flowers and spring have been on my mind, I decided it was time to start making some Spring clutches with blooming flowers and stock the Store

I searched the web for flower tutorials and found a several few patterns and decided that I would use a combination of two together....

I decided to use the technique of heating fabric for that curling effect, therefore I chose Crepe and Organza fabric for the flower.  Using a fabric from Amy Butler,  Lotus Star Paisley in Sand which has lovely spring colors in blue, purple, green, purple and beige.
Springtime Clutch

The result is a Springtime Clutch accented with layers of crepe and organza fabric sewn into a delicate freestyle sculptural flower.   I lined the interior with a durable eco-friendly un-dyed 10oz canvas and finished  it with a magnetic snap to keep all your valuables safe.

My Springtime Clutch is approximately 10.5" wide, 5.5" tall and large enough to carry all your most needed essentials. 

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Strange Sights

My DH and I were driving along the Florida Turnpike along near Pompano when my DH pointed to Mt. Trashmore  (landfill) and asked if I had noticed the Hollywood sign that had gone during the last week. 


It turns out that Tom Cruise and cast (Alec Baldwin, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Paul Giamatti ) are filming the movie "Rock of Ages" in South Florida.  Apparently the crew needed a replica of the Hollywood sign for the movie and built one along the "hills" of Mt. Trashmore. 
Strange sightings indeed

Custom Orders

When you are the designer, you tend to think that you have the best ideas when it comes to coordinating fabrics. So when a customer sends an email requesting two fabrics that you never considered...Purple Hemp fabric with Joel Dewberry's Chestnut Hill Narrow Strip Yellow...I had a few doubts.
However, I put aside my doubts, because yellow and purple really do go well together.  (Who knew, that color wheel was correct).  As I started construction those little doubts were replaced with wondering why you questioned your customer's idea in the first place.

I did have to make some changes, since the interior was not the typical 10oz canvas that I use...I decided  I had to reinforce the cotton fabric with a strong interface and used a tighter multiple stitching....

...but then when it's all end up with one of those Ah Ha! moments...

So if you would love a Purple Hemp Messenger Bag with a yellow strip interior...each bag has reinforced stitching and can accommodate a large laptop and a book or two.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Do you know the Zipper Man?

One of the great things about going home is the fabric...I can't seem to get enough of the fabric stores.  However during my last trip home I headed downtown toward China town to finally visit my zipper supplier in person.  Last year I was watching the CBS Sunday Morning show and there was a story about a legend that has been selling zippers since 1941.When they mentioned his website, it dawned on me that he was my zipper supplier.

Suzie (mom) and I spent about an hour just chatting with Mr. Feibush and his son...and while they weren't looking, I snapped a few photos...

In the land of zippers.