29 September, 2013

J-5 Luggage Compartment

This was my little contribution to sewing last weekend and this weekend.
I need tiny projects right now.

This is the luggage compartment behind the second seat in the J-5 airplane.
It measures 11" wide x 25" long x 12" deep.

The Stearman holds more!

This is where it sits at the back of the cockpit. See that canvas at center left in the photo?

The stearman fuselage is right behind the orange-painted J-5 frame.

That stick in center right is for the back seat pilot.
The stick is connected to control rods which run underneath the luggage compartment which control different flying surfaces at the tail area.

Last Sunday, I installed snaps and grommets to hold the compartment in it's place.
Semi-permanent installation.

Hubby didn't think it was secure enough. Today, I added a few more grommets.
This is heavy canvas so I did not need to add re-enforcing tape under the grommet.
If it was lighter weight fabric, I would.

Underneath the snaps, I did add reinforcement as the pulling exerts stress on any fabric. The grommets are for tie-straps which take on the stress.

Once you cut your tiny hole, insert the grommet and then place the 'washer' part over the center portion. The grommet tool has a recess part at the end that fits the rounded washer part. Place over the grommet and pound away with your hammer. I did it on a metal vise on the work bench. You can also place a scrap of wood underneath so as not to mar the brassy finish.

Here, you can see the saggy bottom. 
Easy fix: Cut a piece of foam core and cover with airplane fabric.

Hubby picked a brown-background and laughed.
We all know this is where the extra oil can and rags go.

Only he and I will know this fabric is there.
See that yellow biplane in the center? That's similar to  our Stearman biplane.

There you have it. A special place to hold airplane stuff.

When hubby was re-storing the Stearman, he ordered a luggage compartment from Dusters & Sprayers which is where you order Stearman parts.
Theirs was a  heavy canvas cut into a square with a zipper running diagonally down it. He paid a buttload of money for this square piece of canvas too.  Authentic Stearman Luggage compartment - haha. (I think it was over $140)
That one was designed so that by the time you tie-stripped it to the fuselage, you created a 'basket' where anything you put into the luggage compartment rolled to the bottom center.

I took one look at the price and told hubby I would make one so we could at least get a travel suitcase in it. Our baggage weight for the Stearman is 60#, i.e. about 20 pounds per person plus space for several quarts of oil, rags, plus other plane stuff. I wanted to maximize the space.

I created a rectangular 'box' out of cordova canvas that ended up with multiple pockets around the side - map compartment, 7-up 2-liter bottle (Mixer), oil bottles secured with room for two travel suitcases in the rectangular part.
For the bottom, I used foam-core and covered it with the same navy blue cordova. When you lift the foam-core out, you can un-zip (diagonally!) and inspect the control rods and various other wires & cables.

{{The luggage compartment I made is similar to one now being sold on ebay for $380.  I utilized RCT fabrics in Portland and paid $120 for the Stearman cockpit cover materials (around $450 to buy that custom-made) and used some of the  same fabrics for the luggage compartment - less than $50.}}

So, sometimes, it is cheaper to sew your own!

For our little J-5, the canvas bag came with the project. Much easier to play with.
So cute with the airplane fabric bottom.

24 September, 2013

Writing To The World

Our J-5 might be painted Cruiser Orange

I started working full time again - in management. If my poor blog  has been relegated to the back burner, just think about my sewing. Well, actually, I am sewing --weird stuff. Like the luggage compartment for our J-5 Cub. That's our little airplane project. This plane will enable us to fly in the winter months in Oregon and not cost near as much as the big round engine of the Stearman biplane.

This last weekend I attended the Quilt Expo here in Portland with Pencil Girl and then came home to hubby's request of affixing the luggage compartment into the frame of the J-5.
It needed snaps and grommets - not a tall order, but impressive to hubby. Kinda like a Ta-Da! wave your magic wand moment.

I'm also commuting. Something I have NOT done in over thirty years.
In an attempt to stay calm and read the stop and goes for what they are, my mind has started up on some pretty random thoughts.

I haven't talked about Postcrossing on this blog before.  Crafty Tokyo Mama introduced me to this modern version of penpals last Spring. I've now sent 43 postcards out and received 40.

Postcrossing involves you registering on their site. You will be given names and addresses to send postcards to. When those people receive your card, they register it on the site. Meanwhile, random people in random countries are sending you postcards.

I wasn't sure I would like the randomness of it all but now I just love it. It's thrilling to see how long a postcard to the Ukraine can take. It's astounding that every one writes near-perfect English with near-perfect penmanship. More amazingly, I'm re-learning how to write legibly!

I received one postcard from China with a complete tiny story written on her card.
Other people have looked at my profile and included airplane stamps, drawings, sewing related, or flower related.

The other night, I found Writing To The World on facebook. A 5 year old from the UK is writing to someone in every UN country. It's too amazing. Here's his letter to someone in Guatemala. Go take a peek. He's written to almost 200 countries.

On Wednesdays, Thursday & Fridays, I go out into the field for (what we call) stand-ups. I often go in early which means?
Yes, you guessed it, I get to come home early. One of those bright spots!

09 September, 2013

Garage Sale Stuff

A customer told me about some books she was sending her mother. A whole series called Annie's Attic Mysteries.

All written by different authors. Combining mysteries with crafting. How cool is that?
This is a list of the books in chronological order.
Doing my research at the library website, one of the authors has written other books, including this one by Sharon Dunn.

It was about garage sale treasures and the mysteries they hold.

Some of my latest garage sale finds:
A whole slew of quilting books.
Almost all are now listed on Amazon.
Don't worry - I kept a few.

I am a garage sale addict.

The first rule of getting over any addiction is to own it and acknowledge it.
My only other rule is my habit needs to support itself.

Garage Sale Millionaire
What's It Worth

Garage Sale Guru
How to set up a garage sale.

Urban Diggers
--This is how Suzi and I do it.
Tag team. Garage Sale Buddies. Both of us looking for stuff.

I look for many reasons but primarily to sell online. Suzi is stocking her Retro Revival store in Oregon City.

We  both look for vintage crap treasures as they are made better and won't break like new stuff.

Urban Diggers 2013 - better video.

02 September, 2013

Work Shorts Done

Finally, this project is done.

{Not really, I need to make another pair.}
One will not be enough.

I don't have a tripod {hah, the garage sale queen does not have a tripod!}
I promised myself I wouldn't apologize for the photos, the fit, my fat tummy and it's all there, taking up space in my head.
I am so in awe of anyone who can sew a garment, take a photo, and post for the public internet peoples. Especially those of us who have interesting figures.

These are somewhat loose fitting shorts made of a navy blue cotton lycra.
I had 3 pairs of work shorts that were made of cotton sheeting and they were so comfortable with the t-shirt ribbing/elastic waistband. I could bend over all day, sit at the computer, lift packages, stand in front of people and they still looked good.

Part of it, I suspect is the RTW surfeit of pockets and tailoring, ahem, top-stitching.
In some of the pocket photos you can still see my chalk marker line to help while top-stitching yet another pocket.

There are six pockets on these shorts.
I don't know of any sewing pattern that incorporates so much 'detail'.

Last spring, when I had to face up to the demise of two of my work shorts, I got out my Swedish tracing paper and made a pattern.
I couldn't find RTW replacements that were long enough and I knew these fit me.
It only took me until Labor Day to pony up.

I have enough material to make another pair, but not today. My eyes are criss-crossed with all the top-stitching.

Two open back pockets, Two front cargo pockets, and two side-seam flapped pockets.

The front section is actually two pattern pieces. They don't quite match on the vertical, allowing a bit of curve shape to happen here.
Notice the front cargo pocket aligns on that seam, which is top-stitched too.

I used my sewing machine and my serger throughout.

01 September, 2013

Update On Sewing Room

Picture heavy post. My posts usually are but this one had 30 - I tried to edit some out....
So much to see...

As many of you know, my hubby and I re-did the house floors in real wood(hickory) nearly three years ago. We were going to put in carpet in the bedrooms but thankfully(!) my paycheck was cut way back and we waited until this spring to do carpet in the master and real wood in the two small bedrooms.
It is such a joy to just sweep up the threads and dust.

My sewing room is still in progress but is usable and almost decorated so it must be time to show it off. I could use some ruthlessness to get rid of the remaining five boxes in the garage but then I wouldn't have anything to 'organize' this winter. lol
Welcome to my sewing room.

Today's project** has been dumped in the middle of the (clean!) floor.

You can see all the hickory variegations. We finished it with a natural Swedish finish.

From the doorway, you can see my Ikea kitchen island that is my cutting table. It's got a butcher block top and 12 drawers that keep me organized! (Janine- I can no longer find this on the web site or the catalog.)
The closet - with doors that thankfully close.
Creative friend made the bunting.
The ironing board sticking out, -cuz that's where it needed to be.
 Many of you know I collect fabric and airplanes. I also collect japanese textiles.
 Just love 'em.
This one hangs above my cutting table.

Oregon is a jump off place to get to Japan and many people visit and bring back souvenirs which end up years later at the garage sales I visit.
(A bit like the Rie Munoz art I brought back from Alaska - doesn't quite fit into Oregon decorating. Ahem.)

 Self explanatory jumble.

Boxes of Japanese textiles, knits, decor-weight, OSU fleece, embroidery floss, buttons(now somewhere else), pillow forms(UP), etc.
This is where I need to ruthlessly delete five boxes so the five boxes still in the garage can come inside.

Believe or not, my most difficult job is to get rid of my cute storage containers that held sewing treasures. That red coffee can had buttons in it -- but the can came from grandma....
The hat boxes have also been emptied but another home (they have airplanes on them!) has not been found.

Maybe tomorrow...we'll just close those doors again.

 Notions totally rearranged - still have stickies on them as I am consolidating similar notions (Can you say extra?)
The pink bag is for usable scraps.
Underneath is ribbon/trim storage as well as those extras I add to my etsy orders.

To the left are my machines but we'll turn right instead.
 Both small bedrooms have a window seat with drawers underneath for storage.

Daughter tie-dyed the curtains and I stole acquired the hanging glass baubles from her.
Eventually, I want just Goldie and the green basket on the windowseat.
The basket holds current ideas/patterns/magazines.
Ignore the stuff in front, please.

A peak at drawer number one which holds an astonishing
2.5 boxes of patterns and magazines!

The second drawer holds  my UFO's. a.k.a. works in progress. Really.

 This is a display thing I painted at the same time as my other display (later). I don't know if I will use it, or not. Definitely ditch the glass.

This is my fabric bookcase I bought many years ago. I thought about putting in another but two things are holding me back.

1. These are my quilting cottons. Much smaller stacks than OSU polar fleece. The smaller stacks stay upright much better. Even my garment fabric yardage is big.

2. I can't find another this narrow (25"). The available ones are over 30" wide and I'm afraid my stacks (I'm trying!) will fall over - all the time.

 It's so much easier to matchymatch with everything out on display.

 One of my bizarre friends crocheted Mr. Frog.
The crewel work on the left is from an estate sale.
The art on the right is from my daughter who bought it in Portland.

An old singer sewing machine etching,  and the note from my daughter which might be worth even more.

 Here's my other display piece. It was 70's wood color before ($5 find) but a little red and turquise spray paint helps it belong better.


 Temari balls, Moomin (little Myy) purse, airplane small things. (Janine! I should have entered the airplane pincushion you made for me into the fair.)

 Here is my latest garage sale find this summer.
I had been to two sales in Molalla and Canby advertising fabrics (duds) and this was my fourth sale - on the way home.
She had some Indian textiles for sale. I liked the napkins and at 50 cents apiece was already imagining re-purposing the turquoise patterned fabric into.......when she said the tablecloths were only $2. Each.

I might have bought all of them.

Then I turned and saw this jewelry chest.
Made in India, it stands thigh high and is made of burled wood. It's lined with that 'lovely' red fake velvet which almost deterred me but I could see putting my rick rack inside, and my zippers, and all the buttons.

The lid opens up and when Janine was visiting, she suggested putting the buttons on top. I had to dream about it as all I could see was a flat surface which would always have stuff on top of it and never being able to access the buttons.
The chest also has four drawers which come out for easier viewing.

Can you imagine pulling up a stool and sifting through the buttons???

 The top two drawers contain most of my buttons (Can you say extra?)
The third has the rickrack.
And the fifth - zippers.
Undecided about the fourth as of today.

 DO NOT FORGET that I like airplanes too.

That's two rows of rick rack, side-to-side. (no extra's here).

And, FINALLY.......

My new pfaff on the right. My serger on the left.
On the stool is my coverstitch, which will reside on the India chest because it takes up space and is much easier to take off the flat surface than piles of other things.

The thread racks have not been hung. I need to look into making or finding one for my serger cones. So there will be three of them.

 So - that's  my new sewing room.

I have five boxes in the garage that need to come inside.
Also my Singer stylist in it's cabinet.

Here's a look of Before:


** Shorts. finally.