Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Jan & Bonne emails



After I put the "Hey Rita Tote" slide show at the bottom of this blog -- I figured I would be hearing from Bonne & Jan....altho, there was a slight delay. But HERE's what they wrote:


Bonne wrote:
Check the new posts each day, but didn't think to look at the bottom of the page - LOL! Great slide show!!! Guess that will teach me to speed blog ;-)

Hey Jan, this has given me an idea - I think we should take our jeans challenge jackets whenever we go on a sewing adventure and take pictures. I could make us each another great mini scrapbook to go with the ones I've already made us.

GREAT JOB RITA!!!




Then, two different emails from Jan (I sent her a text poke on my cellphone, cuz I did not think she saw the slide show):


No WAY!!!!! I didn't see that!!! Too much fun - you are really enjoying your bag!!! My gosh, its been EVERYWHERE!!! Even the bathroom pic!! Thanks Rita! I'm thrilled it's having so much fun traveling with you - its kind of taken on its own persona being around all you famous people!!! Ha ha ha! Love it!!! Keep on totin', jan


On Sep 29, 2009, ritafar@aol.com wrote:
Did u c the hey rita tote slideshow?? Its on the bottom of the show blog Love the song too
Sent from my BlackBerry® wireless device from U.S. Cellular


From: jpotter Date: Wed, 30 Sep 2009 00:55:15 +0000 (GMT)To: <ritafar@aol.com>;
I was gonna ask where our critique of project runway was and voila! here you are!! AND I agree that christopher had the best and Epperson did a great garment as well. Odd show this season - there surely are more qualified people out there than the ones they chose!! Maybe not.............I'm not against older folks, as I am surely one of those, but I think they need to stick to a younger hip group as they will set the trends for years to come. Oh well. I thought Carol Hanna (?) and the gal with the long black hair are very good - Nickolas is not one of my faves as he seems so mean towards the others. Oh well, no one asked my opinion!!! ha ha ha! And yes, I saw the bag but you NEED THE ZEBRA BOOTS!!!! That would make your ensemble complete - you could put the bag over your shoulder and carry the zebra broom in the other hand! You DO have a zebra dust pan don't you?!!! another must ! Hey, we're talking designer stuff here!!! I'm working on Expo challenge stuff - the LAPINSKI CHALLENGE!!! He would LOVE it!!! We'll send him a pic!!! Back to the studio, jan
************
TO WATCH THE SLIDE SHOW THAT GOES ALONG WITH THE MUSIC YOU ARE LISTENING TO -- PLEASE SCROLL DOWN TO THE BOTTOM OF THIS PAGE...GUESS HOW MANY OF THOSE SHOTS WERE TAKEN IN A BATHROOM?

Debra & SCONES...

Debra Justice has a BLOG, too -- and I have it linked on the right side of this blog. She gave me some very helpful advice about a christening gown I'm trying to repair. You MUST check out her blog today because there is a fabulous gardening idea. Really. I'm not kidding. GO THERE NOW. Debra Justice

AND -- she also gave me the Fisher SCONES recipe!! Did you see it? It's on her blog -- check out the Labours of Love blog -- September 2..!!


THANKS again, Debra!! For everything. Can't wait to see you in Puyallup -- the scones are on me!!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Pacific Fabrics Stitch & Pitch

In the very near future, Annette from Pacific Fabrics is going to be a guest "blogger" here. I want to hear all about their Stitch & Pitch event with Deborah Norville. I went online to read about it -- and found this picture...

What is this, Annette??
Can I have one??

Monday, September 28, 2009

Me & My Jan Potter BAG

On a recent visit to Pennsylvania to visit with John's family -- I had occasion to wear my fabulous recycled JEANS.


Here I am, with my sister-in-law Linda -- we're shopping at a GREAT FACTORY OUTLET store. And, as you can see -- I am carrying my most essential WACKY JAN POTTER TOTEBAG!!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Project Runway

Are you watching Project Runway? I'm a HUGE fan. And I could hardly wait for it to come on again. I love, love, love writing a weekly "recap" for my Ritassewfun blog...please go back and read them. (You should be able to do a "search this blog" and go right to the Project Runway posts.)

But this picture of Heidi Klum at the recent Emmy Awards show was shocking to me. Not because of her "in your face" late-pregnancy, body-hugging dress. (even though that was a bit jarring...) But because, of course, on the current episodes of the show -- she doesn't look one bit pregnant! So how long ago did you tape this season, Heidi??



And, of course, they just DID Fashion Week in New York City. So what DOES happen at the end of the show?? Hummm....I'm just sayin'....



And, hey -- while I'm at it -- if you're reading this, Heidi -- BRING BACK MICHAEL KORS AND NINA GARCIA!!

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Bonne, Jan and Rita WEAR the challenges

This is a picture of Bonne in her recycled jeans jacket:


This is a picture of Jan in her recycled jeans jacket:

This is a picture of Rita (me) in my recycled three-pair-of-jeans-makes-one:
When I walked into the China Cafe for our book club luncheon -- the waitress said, "I like your pants." Well, now that I think about it -- I believe that's what she said. Hummm...She had a heavy accent. She might have said, "Don't you have a mirror at your house?"

I don't care. I LOVE 'EM... and YOU will see them at the show!!

Email from the Dynamic Duo

Yesterday, the Sewing & Stitchery newsletter went out -- and I had a LOT of hits on this blog. This is SEW MUCH fun. And I love getting your email!! Both Jan & Bonne wrote(here they are with Linda McGeHee). It's hard to believe they never BLOGGED before!! I love, love, love these girls -- they did the recycled jeans challenge and they play my blogging game by coming frequently to see what I'm writing. (I know they really do, too -- because I have given them quizes...)
Jan writes:

I've been gone for a few days and wow what I've come back to on your blog!!! The broom is wonderful!!! AND you didn't get the rainboots?!!! They would be PERFECT for your recycle challenge "zebra insert red fringed jeans" for Expo!!! Hey and also check out fabric depot.com as they have in their sale stuff, a zebra bag!!! Have you had your car painted yet?!! Ok, enuf zebra stuff! I went to the new expo blog.....still that word?!!...and poof! right in front of my eyes, the BRA!!! Too funny! So we don't sign in on that one, right? Just email you? Loved the Newsletter - that stays, right? - and Bonne and I are intrigued with the new class structure, that is more like a lecture with handouts - we will have to try it!! (It will probably start a challenge for 2011!) And how fabulous to have the sunday morning program for both the heart assoc. and breast cancer awareness - the "Red and Pink" - guess we'll have to dress the part and add it to our "to do" list for support! Never done red and pink...hmmmm. You are a wonderful spokesperson, rita, as I'm beginning to feel I "know" the powers that be in Joanne, Ann, and Janet from your reports. Its amazing to learn how much work goes in to putting on expo with their (and your) work, as well as MANY OTHERS in the planning stages. Great job!!! Hope the new blog is a great success and creates some new and memorable moments - ok!!! Here's the first challenge on the new "expo blog"!!! Lets step it up!! In order to show our support to all the wonderful people who put on Expo, instead of just wearing wear pink and red, bonne and I would like to CHALLENGE all of you out there in "Expoblog-Land" (get it?!) to making a vest, jacket, scarf, hat, pin, ribbon, or anything appropriately wearable, in red and pink, to the Red/Pink Program at Expo 2010!!! Our support is vital for women getting the message to stay healthy in both of these projects. Of course, it is not required, but could be a lot of fun! Whadaya think, rita? ("appropriately wearable"? what in the heck is THAT?!!!) See, bonne made me say that!!! ha ha ha!! She always keeps me in line!!! good job Riat!!! byeee, jan and bonne too!



Also, same day, after she read the show newsletter -- I received an email from Bonne:

Oh my gosh - talk about out of my comfort zone - LOL! But of course will have
to make something fun to wear to watch the show.
Actually, what a great pairing of organizations!!
Hum...l can see Rita now in a bold graphic of pink/red zebra ;-) Bonne

Oh, yeah!! these two are VERY ENTHUSIASTIC Expo fans!! If you didn't receive the Expo newsletter this week, and you don't know what we're talking about here -- go to the website to register. There's a link on the right side of this blog. If you can't make it work -- email me directly.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Luveta and the JEANS Challenge

I have the BEST JOB in the whole wide world! Because I get to talk to sewing speakers all over the country and I'm always delighted to hear what they're doing, where they're teaching, etc. As Luveta was driving from her South Dakota home to the nearest airport (an 8 hour drive, I think...) -- we were just chatting away on our cell phones.

YOU'VE GOTTA LOVE TECHNOLOGY, EH??

This is my favorite picture of Luveta Nickels, the Junk Jeans girl...



Luveta said, "I am thrilled that my passion for blue jeans recycling has finally made it to the mainstream!! I have always believed old blue jeans are a prime opportunity to design and create."

Even though Luveta is constantly ON THE ROAD at this time of year -- teaching at shows and fairs all over the country -- she told me she followed the Jeans Challenge on the ritassewfun.blogspot.com. After I posted the recap on this show blog -- she was tickled ALL OVER AGAIN...

And, as soon as she gets to string two days together at her house -- she's gonna tell us what she thought. So -- brace yourselves, Jan & Bonne...we're gonna be critiqued by the World's Foremost Authority on jeans recycling!!

In the next coupla days, I'll post more pictures of our projects...and you can be the judge!!

P.S. -- Please note that Luveta's scarf matches her mittens. Maybe that's not remarkable -- but I think you should know that her luggage matches her car. No kidding. The girl is a fashionista from waaaay back! If you don't believe me -- at the show you should stop by her booth and check out her shoes...really...

Rita's Jeans Reveal






I know -- it just doesn't make any sense laying on my pool table, does it? DO NOT WORRY -- today I have book club and my plan is to WEAR my new jeans. My loyal clubbers read this blog (and I know that's true, cuz I quiz them all the time)...so when I walk into ChiChi's -- their reaction will be immediate!! AND then -- I'll have them take a picture of me IN 'em...
Jan and Bonne are also sending me pics of them WEARING their finished projects -- so I'll put it up ASAP!!



Thursday, September 24, 2009

Bonne's Jeans Challenge REVEAL












My Jacket:
-concept from Luveta Nichols Junk Jeans
-McCalls/Palmer/Pletsch pattern #5191
-scrubdot embroidery form Embroidery Machine Essentials by Mary Mulari (remember the pic with the book)
-snaps from Snap Source
-YLI twilight and variegated threads from Ghees
-hot fix crystals (from one of the many hot fix booths at Expo, which I swear have a gravitational pull that suck me right in!)



Project Runway TONIGHT

Yes, I am HOOKED!! Tonight is Project Runway, Season 6, on LIFETIME. Check your local listings.

I have enjoyed writing my weekly recaps -- and I'll continue to post them on the ritassewfun blog. Thanks for sending me emails, telling me how much you enjoy my recaps. I hope you don't regret being so encouraging...lol...

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Kaye Wood Teacher Certification!


YIPEE KAYEE...

I just got off the phone with Kaye Wood -- and the good news is Kaye will be teaching her all-day certification program in Puyallup the day before the show!!

Of course, Kaye is one of our most popular HIGH ENERGY quilting teachers -- and if you want to do what Kaye does -- in your own town -- at your favorite store -- you should SIGN UP FOR THIS CLASS.

I'll write more as information comes available -- I just wanted you to know we're working ALL THE TIME to bring you new topics, and make the 2010 Sewing & Stitchery EXPo the BEST ONE YET...

Jan's Jeans Challenge REVEAL


















Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Time for This Blog to TAKE OFF!

Dear Expo Fans,

Well -- so far, so good. I've been practicing my "blogging skills" all summer over on ritassewfun.blogspot.com. One of the BEST things that happened was that Jan Potter and Bonne Swett, the "Two Girlfriends" from last year's show -- joined me in a JEANS CHALLENGE. OH MY GOD. They were awesome!! They sent me clues, and pictures of their project in progress, and even TRASH TALKED. We gave ourselves two weeks to complete the challenge.
If you continue to read -- the post below is a recap of our "recycled jeans challenge".

Thanks for coming to read the blog -- I promise to keep you posted on the behind-the-scenes-Expo developments!!

Next week, Annette from Pacific Fabrics is going to tell you about their recent "Stitch & Pitch" event in Seattle. They had Deborah Norville!! HEY -- PACIFIC FABRICS -- BRING HER TO PUYALLUP...!!
In the next coupla days -- you'll see pictures of Bonne, Jan and ME -- wearing our recycled jeans challenge garments.

Jeans Challenge Summer 2009

September 2009
First of all -- let me say that Jan Potter made the fabulous ZEBRA bag that I carry with me everywhere I go! She surprised me with it at the 2009 Expo -- and I love it so much -- I use the picture of me (with the bag) as my profile photo...(thanks again, Jan!)

Jan Potter is on the left and Bonne Swett is on the right. Of course, that's one of our most popular Expo Sewing Stars -- Linda McGehee standing in the middle. Linda "discovered' the dynamic sewing duo of Jan & Bonne. And they brought 25 of their sewing "Challenges" to the 2009 Sewing & Stitchery Expo.

Their program was OUTSTANDING. The audience loved their presentation! Jan sews everything over-the-top -- with hanging threads, matching purses, embroidery, embellishments, whatever she can think of to push it to the BRINK. Bonne is more of an accountant-who-likes-orderly-matching-symetrical. Their differences are EXACTLY why their program was so entertaining! Because their challenge was to buy the same fabric, pattern or book and then go home to make their own "version". One year later, they unveil their creations to each other -- and they've been doing it for YEARS. In 2009 -- they shared their very different final projects with our EXPO audience and they were a BIG HIT.

*****************
So -- after the Expo newsletter went out, announcing my "BLOG" (ritassewfun.blogspot.com) -- both Jan and Bonne sent me encouraging emails -- and I CHALLENGED THEM to participate with me in a Recycled Jeans Challenge. Mostly because Luveta Nickels, the Junk Jeans girl -- had been my very first "Mystery Blogger"...

Luveta said, "And my first love is sewing and creating every chance I get."


SO -- here's a recap of the Great Jeans Challenge of 2009!!
August 22, 2009





THEY'RE IN....As a test, to see if anybody was REALLY READING THIS BLOG -- I threw out a sewing challenge the other day.

AND I AM DELIGHTED to report that both Jan Potter (left of Linda McGehee) and her sewing sister Bonne Swett (in the blue jacket, on the right) have both sent me emails saying THEY ACCEPT THE CHALLENGE...

I CANNOT BELIEVE HOW MUCH FUN THIS IS!!

Pressure. I'm tellin' ya -- it was pretty easy for me to take a picture of two pair of old cut-up jeans. NOW I'VE ACTUALLY GOTTA PUT IT ALL TOGETHER...and turn it all into something I could actually wear. (and what did I do with that third pair of jeans that almost fit me??...humm...)

Do we have a deadline, girls? Whataya say -- how about two weeks?? Feel free to send me digital photos of your in-progress-jeans-recycle. (I'll post them so people can see what' we're working on!) I'm sure Luveta is reading this blog EVERY SINGLE DAY -- and she'll want to see if we've learned anything from taking ALL THOSE CLASSES FROM HER OVER THE YEARS...

And, of course, Linda McGehee will be relieved to know that the two of you are STILL GOIN' AT THE SEWING THING.

Hey -- if our jeans projects are cute enough -- you can include them in your new Nooner program for 2010 -- right??

WE'RE OFF!!

August 24, 2009


As you know -- the jeans challenge is a definite GO. Bonne & Jan have accepted the mission. Here's a picture of Jan right before she & Bonne went on stage to reveal their "2009 challenge".


But we still need a deadline. Jan sent me this email: Jan's comments are in italics, mine are in RED INK...


"I can't believe I'm blogging now - isn't that a strange word?!! (I agree completely -- it makes no sense at all.)


I had to call Bonne to help me try to register but alas I couldn't figure it out - (don't worry -- I can't do that, either, Jan! -- just keep sending me emails -- we'll muddle through it together..)...


I do enjoy your "blog" tho - first one I've ever been to. I guess you have us figured out now - Bonne's the brains of us!! She keeps us on track, in line and always figures out how much we have to tip at restaurants! (I know what you mean -- when the Ya Ya Sisters travel, Mary is in charge of math...)


I'm sure you're kidding (or crazy!) at the 2-week deadline - (HEY -- if this deal takes longer than two weeks, I might have to buy bigger jeans. How much time do you need, girls?)


we can start figuring out what we're doing and start taking pics as we go along - believe it or not, just this morning I was checking out my old jeans that I keep forever and voila! strangely, I have some that will work for me!! This may peak some bigtime interest in Expo since you'll be creating for the challenge, too. (I'm only in for the BLOG challenge, babe -- you're on your own with that challenge program at the show!)


Ok, I'm heading for the studio and Bonne's off to church.............see?!!


Thanks for the fun, jan


(You're welcome!! Now -- GET BUSY...Love, Rita...)
Email from Bonne -- the accountant/half of the Sewing Challenge DUO:

August 25, 2009

Hey There Rita,

Would you be okay with a Sept 8th deadline (2 weeks from today)? It's just not in my nature to start a project until the one I'm working on is complete, and I will be done with current project this evening - a little obsessive, but I never have an unfinished project LOL!!!!! Jan on the other hand can work on many projects at one time. You 2 have probably gotten a jump start on me :-)

Okay, now for the fun stuff. Since this is a challenge I'm assuming we can't see each other's final completed project until the end, but we will share bits and pieces along the way. Jan & I tend to throw in some good natured "trash talk" emails throughout the year with our Expo challenges - what do you think?

My first bit/clue to what I'm doing: Are you envious of my hoard of old jeans I've been saving for years? Actually I use them quite frequently for totes or throws.
Being the literal type I'm going to make a jeans jacket using a McCall's/Palmer/Pletsch pattern. Oh, but watch out Jan & Rita, wait till you see what I do with it!!!

Well I'd best get back to work, Bonne

**************

Okay, Bonne -- the September 8 deadline is perfect! I don't have much of a head start -- altho I did cut up two old pair of jeans. And, well, I did all that fun old-decorated-jeans-Goodwill shopping! But, apparently, with the stash you already have -- you didn't need to do that. The most surprising thing in your email was the part where you can't start a new project before you FINISH the one you're working on. I was dumbfounded. What a concept. I am telling you the truth, Bonne. In my whole life, I never once let an unfinished project get in my way....

Sometimes, you just need to let them know who's boss, babe!!

And -- hey -- TRASH TALK??? Are you kidding me?? THIS IS GOING TO BE SOOO MUCH FUN!!! I am really down with that, girls.

BRING IT ON...!!
August 25, 2009
Okay -- so the recycled jeans challenge is officially ON. And Jan sent this impressive picture of her sewing room and her beautiful Pfaff sewing machine...and her beautiful Viking sewing machine. How many machines do you two girls have, between you?

Wow. Very impressive 'sewing studio". (Ya'll would be very disappointed if I posted a picture of my sewing machine sitting on top of a folding table, stuck behind the pool table...it's not so much a sewing studio as it is a corner of my crowded basement...)

NEED MORE THREAD, JAN??

From Jan:

and the flower stuff is..... - vogue DKNY pattern - no plain old blue stuff for me!! Bonne, I'm impressed with your volumn of jeans to work from - I will be OUT of jeans before this challenge is done - who's idea was this anyway? Oh right! Thanks Luveta for sigining up on this blog first!!! ha ha ha! Guess its better than if Martha Pullen had signed in - we'd be doing heirloom baby bonnets!
jan

P.S. Hey -- Martha is a rock star -- and, as a new Grandma, there is something very sweet about an heirloom baby bonnet. That reminds me -- I have some GREAT pictures of Lillian Claire, wearing my husband's 65-year old Christening gown..so much to blog...so little time...

AND -- don't forget that tonight is the NEW episode of Project Runway! So -- Bonne & Jan, Debra, Mary, Linda, Sandy & #7 (you know who you are) -- be sure to TUNE IN. It's really fun to watch and think about how you might handle the challenge....It starts at 8:00 on Lifetime. If you missed last week's premiere -- they will be repeating it tonight. C'mon -- give it a shot!! Some of these designers really can sew!!

August 27, 2009
Emails from Bonne & Jan: (these two women are VERY, VERY COMPETITIVE)

From Bonne:

Hey Rita,
How about some clues from you??? Jan & I have shown you some bits and pieces of where we are going with ours, but what direction are you going with yours?

You know Jan, if we ever did do a Martha Pullen challenge it would be the perfect inspiration to use that pleater I just had to buy because you had one!!!! Then there are all those wing needles we could use..... you know there may be a future Expo challenge depending.... Rita you are aware of our challenges, but did you also realize we have a sewing -machine, tools, patterns, gadgets, embellishment- competition of sorts as well? I mean I certainly can't let Jan having a cool sewing item and not have my own :-) Bonne


From Jan:
Ya rita, some clues - we WANT clues!!! I mean we were generous with our pics - we NEVER see anything like that between between bonne and I on our challenges!! No patterns, no nothin'!!! And bonne, you would bring up the pleater! ha ha! I love heirloom stuff and have almost every book from martha............maybe?!!!! jan... trying to find some thread......could ya send me some blue.............or red, or bright green..............more clues.....no zipper tho! I really need thread now that you mention it.......

Rita: Gheesh...pressure, pressure...it looks to me like the two of you are actually SEWING something fabulous out of the recycled jeans. Whereas, I'm more of a "put three pair of old jeans together to make something new" kinda girl....

BUT -- HEY -- you two are doing the RIGHT THING when it comes to shopping for sewing innovations at the show. I LOVE a little competitive shopping, babe! Our vendors bring their newest, latest, hottest stuff -- and WE MUST BUY IT so they can come back next year with more bounty!!


Okay -- here's one of my first jeans-redo-project pics. I cut out the embellished areas of two different pair of Goodwill jeans. If you scroll down -- you'll see I've been "fraying" away the edges...it's a nice "television" activity.










Maybe I've taken it too far, eh? The fringe is about 2" long so far and I JUST CAN'T STOP...(can you see the cute little reverse applique peaking from the underside of the denim?) Hummm...what's my next step?




And right now, my biggest problem is that I can't actually ZIP the recycled pair of jeans I was gonna restyle....

Well -- I may have to insert a gusset for my butt...(it's not like THAT would be a new experience...)




I wonder if "butt gusset" is an actual sewing term??



August 31, 2009
Bonne wrote to tell me she WANTED THE SEWING MACHINE LAMP... and also, she loved the picture of Jayne's wedding quilt. That was a very touching story....thanks again, Jayne, for sharing!!

Bonne said: Jan may absolutely love HAND sewing, but in my book it's a four letter work. Last evening while I was doing the Four Letter Word, I was trying to think of something fun. I decided to try and imagine what each of your garments would look like, and I think I just may be starting to come up with a visual in my mind.

Rita: a wonderful, very sassy, creative pair of jeans with a possible zebra gusset :-)
Jan: an amazing, colorful, artistic jacket with just a hint of thread (not! -if I know Jan,more like miles of thread- LOL!)

Am I getting warm Ladies???
************
So -- Bonne. hummm....your email makes me think the three of us should come up with a FOUR LETTER WORD that would describe our finished jeans project. THAT's your next clue assignment....now I'm thinkin'.....



September 1, 2009
Jan sent this email:

Dear Rita,
Sooooooo, my friend bonne has brought up the "four letter word" now in your blog!! (That still is a strange word!) blog blog blog........she whines and whines when she has to do hand sewing! Last year at expo, Jane from YLI Thread, asked the two of us to help her with her 4 hour class, and you won't believe what the class was!!! Ha ha!! Yes! HAND SEWING!! Like embroidery stitches - bonne had about passed out at the thought of her helping in this class!! So ya know what she did?!!! she offered to take the tickets, the money and hand out the supplies!!!! She sat as though duck taped to the chair in the back of the room - oh she did help a lady who lost her needle by getting her a new one!! But she did look good in one of our challenge jackets!!! I hope everyone who reads your blog (!!) will come to expo next year - we could have a bloggers get together! We have so much fun and there is so much to see, do and learn! Are we allowed to tell everyone about out fashion show we're gonna do again this year?

(Note from Rita -- HEY -- in two weeks, I'm going to activate the Sewing & Stitchery blog -- and that would be a great story for us to lead off with...especially now that, because of our exciting JEANS challenge, everybody from THIS HERE blog will wanna go over there and see what the two of you are up to. Right?? We'll have to get our friend Linda McGehee in on the fun...)

Well, I guess I'd better get busy in my studio and quit blogging - only 9 more days til our deadline! byee, jan

note to blog readers: I've received several questions about why both Jan and Bonne shared pictures of their "sewing studios" -- but I did not. The reason is simple. I do not have a "sewing studio". I have a "sewing dungeon"....and I would be ashamed to let anybody see it. Y'know -- I posted a picture of the backseat of my car. Isn't that enough embarrassment for one year??




Like all really fun sewing projects -- the "thinking" and "planning" is the most difficult stage. My restyled blue jeans project is no exception. I thought I was going to do one thing -- and it turns out -- I'm headed in a completely different direction.

Although I was stalled for a long time -- having a deadline is a very useful thing for me. Y'know -- like, when you're sewing for a wedding, or a Christmas project...having that date when you MUST finish...it just gets the creative juices going. One of my very good friends, Eileen Roche, the editor of Designs in Machine Embroidery magazine -- taught me the important lesson that "done" is a worthwhile goal -- whereas "perfect" is a waste of time.

Then, too, there was Jan sending a snarky email about the fact that SHE IS ALREADY DONE. A week before the deadline? REALLY? You're right, Bonne -- she's quite an overachiever.

I DO have my four-letter project description all figured out, tho. HEY -- that took longer than you might think.

Anyway -- I don't want to give it all away...but, as it turns out, my porch pillow is a gigantic hint -- in ways you can only imagine...

P.S. As a reminder -- our big unveiling is NEXT WEDNESDAY. September 9. And I'd also like to remind everybody that I haven't actually "worn" a pair of blue jeans for over 20 years. Seriously. It's a good thing I lost 100 pounds in preparation for this momentous occasion, eh??



From Jan, September 2, 2009:



dear rita & bonne,


the jeans queen is DONE!!!!! Yup, my project is finito!!! (Is that the way you spell that?!!) Ready to wear! Bring on some cold weather!!! And I have a 4-letter word, oh! maybe "title" for it!!! It is proudly gracing one of my mannequins and lookin' gooooood! as we speak, or BLOG - thats what we're doin', blogging!!! Your challenge buddy, jan.....who is now really into this recycled jean thing!!




So you can keep the players in our little game straight --Jan is in the black & white vest, and Bonne is in the jeans jacket. Linda McGehee is the one who DISCOVERED these two super-sewers and put them on the stage last year. I can HARDLY WAIT to see what they both came up with for this jeans challenge. For the life of me, I do not know what I was thinking...AND -- Jan -- WHAT DO YOU MEAN, "ONE" OF YOUR MANNEQUINS?? AND -- hey -- who color-sorted ALL THAT FABRIC?? The two of you are really scaring me...cuz I am in WAAAAAY over my

As you know by now -- Bonne is the one on the left and Jan is the one on the right. Here's what you don't know. Bonne is "conservative" -- and Jan is "wild and crazy". That's what makes their sewing challenges so interesting. Bonne enjoys a tailored, classic look. Whereas Jan lives to take things over the top. She adds miles of thread, then lots of beads, charms and trim -- maybe even some piping. When she has that moment, where she worries that she's gone too far -- she pushes through and makes a matching purse and maybe a bra for good measure. (I'm making up the thing about the bra...but it would not surprise me).




But, for this recycled jeans project -- I wonder if they decided to "switch it up". I mean -- can it be true that Jan is actually DONE?? And Bonne is the one "acquiring" secret elements in plain brown envelopes?? Something seems a little out of order at this point...


***********

September 3, 2009
Bonne writes,


Every evening after all the Expo events are over (as well as any stops at Pacific Fabrics or Quilt Barn after hours) we head back to our hotel for show and tell. We get to share what we learned in our seminars, as well as what treasures each of us discovered and purchased. Besides -- that way Jan doesn't get home with something really cool that I missed!!!! - I can go back the next day and get my own

Off to spend the evening on my ultimate recycled jeans jacket!!!! Bonne


***********


HEY -- keep up the good work!! Expo needs all the super-shoppers we can get!
head!!


Okay -- this just goes to show -- you should always BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU PRAY FOR. I swear, the bra was just a little joke...nobody could have predicted it would turn into anything...


September 5, 2009

Bonne's email:


Hey Rita,
I'm so with you on Qristyl & Epperson - I wanted to scream "GROW UP"

The Bra thing isn't so far out there!!! We actually bought bra purse patterns one year at Expo!

I also wonder if Jan is truly done. It's not over till it's over, and she's been known to get some amazing last minute inspirations!!

Have a great Labor Day everyone - can't wait for the reveal!!! Bonne
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Then -- Jan wrote:


Dear Rita,


First rita, I'm sorry your zebra placemats died - really I am, as I'm getting to know how precious these critters are to you.


AND SECOND, whaaaaaaat are you saying? A bra................


I can do it!!! I have 5 days to go, ya know! A bra will go with my recycled jacket............yes it will! AND I will model the whole thing!!! Your "blog" will fall into deep depression, but I will model the darn thing!!



AND THIRD!!! You HAD to put that pic of me looking like I'm half asleep, thank you very much - paybacks are bad girlfriend!!! Even in zeBRA world!!! This Wednesday, you will see the "plain and simple, no frills, no big deal jacket and BRA!!! So whadaya think pal bonne?!!!


jan .... (too much info?)



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I'll be lucky to have my jeans project done by Wednesday...SO THERE WILL NOT BE A BRA FROM RITA. But, just so you know -- if I could do it -- it would look someting like this: