rugs usa || 36 rugs under $500

I have been searching high and low for an affordable rug for my living room, and if you follow me on Pinterest, you may have noticed all the rug pinning I have done lately.  I thought I would share with you some fun finds on Rugs USA.  Please note, some of the rugs listed below are under $500 when they go on sale, which seems to happen frequently.  Some are under $500 at regular price.

Left to right:  first, second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh, eighth, ninth

Left to right:  first, second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh, eighth, ninth

Left to right:  first, second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh, eighth, ninth

Left to right-  first, second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh, eighth, ninth

I'm thinking one of these rugs might have to move in with me.  :)  Which one is your favorite?



light update

a quick note to say thank you for those who helped me try to figure out what material was used to cover this light. i should ask more questions on this blog.  :)  i haven't had time to respond to emails yet, so sorry for the delay.  you guys rocked out some great answers though, and i can't wait to do a little research and start on my light.  this light will go in the kitchen over christmas/new year break when matt can center the light over the island.  i plan on moving the existing light to my little laundry area, which is also our carport entry.

the light below is what i want to diy and can be bought at serena and lily.  i pinned it  a long time ago, and it always has been on the forefront of my mind. (though i am not 100% positive the light you see below is actually serena and lily)

Lucy and Company
thank you for telling me the correct source of the photo!

i think this light will work well for the following reasons.

  • since the only artificial light source in the kitchen is the light above the island, this will allow me to use a bright bulb without blinding everyone's eyeballs because the weaving effect will soften the light.  (we are not installing recessed lighting)
  • the color will bring in a natural element into the kitchen, and grey and natural wood look really, really good together.  
if the project turns out to be a fail, i'll definitely let you know.  

just ignore that NO RUGS sign.  the picture came from this post, and i realized while typing this that i have no other shots like this with the kitchen updated.

here's the progress on my newest quilt.  my love for hsts continue.  i have no idea how i'm going to quilt this, so if you want to offer a suggestion, i'm open to it!

have a great weekend!



there's no shame in using a pattern

I honestly don't know why I am writing this today.  I just felt an urgency to get this down, and maybe, this post is only for me.

As you may know, I am working hard to sew some items to sell for an upcoming craft fair.  When coming up with ideas on what to make and sell, my mind was all over the place causing much frustration and anxiety for myself.  To make it a lot easier on myself, I chose to only make two different items - designer toss pillows and fold-over clutches.    Once I had narrowed it down, I felt relieved and a lot more focused.

Let's fast forward a little.  I am currently making my third quilt  while I wait for a few supplies that are for the fair to come in the mail.  (the second one has not been properly shown yet, so you haven't missed out on that)   My mind started thinking about how I have been using patterns lately to make the things I sew.   And then that thought led me to think about the creativity that is among the internet.  I sometimes get this impression that is far better to create something new and exciting rather than relying on what has already been done.  Don't get me wrong.  I like new stuff.  I like seeing new tutorials and patterns that are available to someone like me who wouldn't call themselves an advanced sewer.  I am definitely not a beginner but maybe an intermediate?  I just feel like I have a lot to learn still.  

Back to patterns.  I like using them.  If someone made something great out there and a pattern is included, I'm all over it like white on rice, which brings me back to the craft fair and my 3rd quilt.   To be truthful, I felt a little embarassed? <---- is that even the right word I'm looking for???  that I am using someone else's pattern to make my clutches instead of coming up with my own design.  And to be even more truthful, I could have easily replicated the clutch without purchasing the pattern, but I wanted to support a handmade designer.  But then I told myself, it's okay.  It's okay to use someone else's pattern to create beautiful clutches.  It's okay to make a HST quilt because hundreds of other people have done the same thing too.

I think it can be easy for someone in the sewing world to feel like his or her work is not as valid as the person who created it first.

So here I am typing this to you (mostly to me) and saying . . .


Be proud of your work!  If you sew like I do, you put your heart, time, energy and soul into everything you make.  And the more you sew, the better you get!

Fyi- The post was not edited that much, so this is how my thought process works.  Drives my husband bonkers that I am all over the place.  :)



name this material for me so I can DIY it

totally stumped on this one.  what material is wrapped around this light?  it is not wood veneer.  i've tried that already.  looks similar to corn husks (in my opinion), but then again who would want a vegetable hanging from their ceiling?  (actually, corn is a grass for the more politically correct.)  the husband suggested reed.

so, so stumped.

Lucy and Company

this photo does not belong to me, but i want to source it!  i had no intentions of ever showing this photo, so i didn't keep the source.  my gut is saying lonny mag or some other online magazine.



Sew South || A Modern Sewing Retreat in Charlotte, NC

I had a different post for you today, but I am literally swamped and couldn't finish editing the photos in time.  I have a feeling you guys won't be seeing as much of me over the course of this next month.  I should probably let you guys in on what's going on around here, but I really don't want to let the cat out of the bag in case it's a total flop or  failure.  I'm just that kind of a person.

But's here's my secret list.

  • I'm trying something new, scary, and big, which is taking a lot of my time.  (Not home related.)
  • I'm working on a sewing tutorial that will be posted on another site in the near future.
  • I recently got invited to attend a local craft fair the first week of December, which means that big, scary thing above gets pushed to the back burner, and there's a chance I will have to start all over again.
  • All of this is happening within a month's time frame (well, except for the big, scary thing above, which is happening all the time when I have time and over a course of a few months).  :)
  • And if you haven't noticed, I'm dramatic and can't handle a lot on my plate at any given time.  Yeah, woe is me.  At least I admit this!  :)

Onto Sew South!

Jennifer, of Ellison Lane Quilts, asked me to share this information with you guys.  We both just recently met on the internet, and we were both so happy to know that we were somewhat near each other!  I was excited to see Sew South was going to be held nearby.   It seems like all the fun stuff happens up North or out West.

To read more about this fun event, including ticket prices and itinerary, please click here. 

Tickets go on sale this Wednesday, Oct. 24th.  This event is only open to 50 people, so act fast!

Have a good day!



for baby Olivia

Jen delivered Olivia not too long ago and to welcome her into this big world, I made her a little cloth book.  I've known Jen for most of the duration of my blogging time.

The baby cloth book comes from Bora on Spoonflower.  The tab is Kate Spain Fandango in orange.

I'm sure Olivia is going to love, drool, and chew this book to pieces.

Have a wonderful weekend!




busy, busy

This week I have been happily busy . . .

working on some custom work,

completing my quilt,

anticipating the arrival this new collection, Ikebana, by dear Stella,

Photo belongs to dear Stella

finishing the back of my kitchen island,

 and wishing I could finish my blocks for the Pervalong hosted by Charlotte.  (The striped fabric is a very stretchy pant material.)

I picked up this cute, little dresser to experiment Annie Sloan chalk paint on.

It's actually really cute as is.  Unfortunately, I have no room for it, so this will be going on Craigslist for the Raleigh, NC area.  Sad for me but great for someone else.  I'm envisioning this piece as a nice nightstand or drop off station for a small entry way.  Did you notice the caster wheels?  Too cute!

p.s.- Pink Chalk Fabrics is having a great sale right now.  I picked up Simpatico, The Birds & The Bees, and a few other prints I have been eyeing for some time now.


DIY your own throw for Fall || tutorial

This tutorial could not be any easier, but the trickiest part is finding the right material to make your blanket.  Months ago I stumbled upon this fabric.  I loved it from a distance, but I was shocked when I held it in my hand how much it felt and looked liked a blanket.  More specifically, it reminded me of the blanket my mom gave to me back in the 90's.  It has a bunch of cats and flowers on it, but I cannot bear to part with it because it came from my mom.

I asked the lady who owned the fabric what it was. She said, "I dunno."  Very helpful.  Not only could she not tell me the manufacturer, but she could not tell me how to care for my fabric.   Clearly, I couldn't see a chair upholstered in this stuff nor a quilt made from it.    But I bought the fabric anyways because I loved the print and wanted to turn it into a blanket.  I was just keeping my fingers crossed that my idea would actually work.  And it did.


welcome YHL readers

I'm not sure where to begin, so I'll just randomly spit stuff out and hopefully get you it.  M'kay?


embroidered gifts

I made these two items awhile back for wedding gifts for a friend of mine and a relative.  Now that both items have been delivered safely to the brides' homes, I am able to share them with you.

This is an original design done by me.

If you are interested in purchasing a Type Love hoop, please click here.

Perfect for anniversaries, weddings, or special loved ones.




Wow.  I have really enjoyed reading everyone's inputs on the threads they use.  Thank you!  I am sure you are helping someone else out there too by letting us know what works for you and doesn't.  Onto other news . . .

Matt and Owen left early this morning to hike a mountain here in NC.  Owen loves to camp, and this is his 3rd camp out.  This means I have the weekend TO MYSELF!  What am I going to do???  That was me asking myself that.

Actually, I have a few things planned.

I started on the backside of my kitchen island.  My idea of a herringbone pattern, which will be painted white with dark edges, is turning more into a chevron, even though I staggered the boards.  I know herringbone is the sister of chevron, but it's looking like it's full on chevron.  (Did anyone just say full on double rainbow in their head after reading that?)  I love chevrons, but my home cannot handle any more chevrons.  I have chevron curtains and a chevron wall.  I laid out a few planks to see what it might look like, and here are the results.  Just ignore awful lighting.  Hopefully you get the idea.

I may need to rethink my options for the back.   We'll see.

I'm attending the Parade of Homes here in Raleigh!  I'm so excited to snoop around in other people's homes and take photos of inspiring DIY ideas.   Don't worry.  You'll get to see them too.

If there's any time left (because this girl will be in her pajamas and in bed most of the weekend), I will tend to a few sewing projects.

I came out a half yard too short for the back of my friend's quilt, so I am waiting for fabric to come in the mail.  I am thinking of quilting using wavy lines.  I like the organic lines in the Echo Leaf Vine that I used, so I think mimicking that will be nice.

I like what Bijou Lovely did here.  So fun!

Quilting question.  How did she achieve visible stitches?  Heavier/thicker thread?  Contrasting colored thread?  I'm so new to quilting, which means I have a lot to learn.

And lastly, here's some other things going on.

1.  3rd quilt.  My love for HSTs, graphic, and modern.
2. Joined the Pervalong QAL!  SO excited for this!  I joined really late, but that's okay.
3. Samples I'm toying around with.
4. A very small sneak peek at a few completed projects.  (Please do not get the impression I am a fast sewer.  I am dreadfully slow!)

Have a great weekend!  Thanks for stopping by!



Your Sewing Thread Under A Microscope || Visually Understanding Thread Quality

  This post is in no way to influence you to one brand or another.  I was not paid by any thread company for this post.  

After purchasing my first sewing machine, it sparked a desire to learn more about sewing thread quality since I suffered from a lot of issues with my last machine.  There are hundreds of sewing threads to choose from, and I find it to be a bit overwhelming.  Though my BERNINA came with Mettler thread, I have heard great things about Aurifil, and I couldn't wait to try it out on my machine.  But it got me thinking about why the Mettler brand came with my machine.  Does it meet BERNINA standards?  Or is there a contract between Mettler and BERNINA?  Or does my BERNINA dealer favor Mettler above all other brands?   And what is the fuss about Aurifil?  Is it really that great?  How do these brands compare to those available at JoAnn Fabrics?

Copyright © owen's olivia. All Rights Reserved.
Blogger Template by The October Studio