My Upcycled Tee Shirt Obsession

I think that I may have mentioned before that I’m slightly craft ADD and usually have 10 ideas in my head at one time, none of which I actually have the time to work on since I’m probably crafting the ten ideas from 3 months previous. Back in 2011 I came to Middle Georgia (sounds like a place in a sci-fi novel doesn’t it?) for work. The first month or so my husband and I stayed in a room at Value Place (it’s an hotel/studio apartment type thing). To keep from going crazy I started crocheting around my old concert tees that I had saved from the 80s.

Sting Concert Tee

Once the holiday season is past, my Etsy sales are nonexistent, which is great for me because it means that I have time to experiment with designs (some not so good btw), learn new things etc. My latest “thing” is getting back to t-shirt  recycling  I am obviously a t-shirt hoarder and they (like my odd bits of yarn) must go somewhere other than a landfill.

Seriously, who doesn't love Tweetie Bird?

Seriously, who doesn’t love Tweetie Bird?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today I made this cute pillow cover for my youngest who was in Marching Band  back in high school. It looks as though there is no crochet involved BUT – I did crochet a very long chain which i ran through the hem of the shirt to tie the bottom of the pillow – which makes the cover washable and reusable, I hope he’ll have it for years to come.

Upcycled tee shirt pillow

So there I was writing this awesome post and one half of it has disappeared. Arrrgh.
Anyway I was about to tell you about my new idea for naturalistas who dry their hair with or wrap their wet hair in a t-shirt (leaves your hair so much softer and less frizzy that a towel). It’s still just an idea/experiment. Here’s a sneak peak:
My upcycled tee shirt idea for naturalistas

My upcycled tee shirt idea for naturalistas

Visit my Etsy site for more of my repurposed tee ideas, unfortunately I don’t yet have the time that it would take to create AND create tutorials, but I hope to share some of my ideas in the future.Enhanced by Zemanta

Transitions – Maria Shriver, JLO & Me

Gypsy DusterWhen the news broke about Arnold and Maria’s split I read where Maria Shriver said that she was going through a transition and had no idea what she was going to do next. I really did feel for her but couldn’t help thinking – “but you have money, lots of money”. Wrong of me, I know.

On another note I was saddened to hear that Jenny from the block had split with Marc Anthony – who is starting to look hotter and hotter now that he’s been paired with Jada on “Hawthorne”. But there’s still hope for everybody, it ain’t over til it’s over right?

Bet you didn’t even know I cared about such things. Well I don’t really, but how else to segue into my own tale of trial, tribulation and yes…transition.

Lets see in the past 2.5 months I’ve:

  • Been unemployed
  • Started a new job – 100 miles away from home
  • Lived in a hotel
  • Suffered through my Mom having a second  stroke , followed by pneumonia
  • Moved into a new place
  • Had a very large pine tree fall on said new place and lost use of half of the new place (including the kitchen)
I said very large tree didn't I?

I said very large tree didn't I?

So of course with all of that to occupy me ( you try packing up a 3 story 7 bedroom home while working in another city an dspending weekend sleeping in a hospital chair) I have been totally unable to  accomplish what I promised myself I’d get done this summer:

1. Blog more

2. Launch my line of upcycled tees

3. Crochet  and market a version of every single pattern in the  Double stitch twins book

Well finally some breathing room. I still don’t have a kitchen but I do love my new house and enjoy the parts that I can. What with moving a hundred miles away I did not have access to my favorite model Sara, so I had to delay launching my t-shirt line. However, we were finally able to connect yesterday and I was able to post several new items today – including the Gypsy Duster from “Designs for the Crochet Fashionista”.

My tee shirts were inspired by the bag of concert tees that I had saved since the 80s and some newer ones from my husband’s days as a musician and tour manager. I thought that upcycled tees might be a logical next step for me and look forward to adding sports tees, vacation tees, and tees with irreverent sayings.

I’ve also added new baby items to my Etsy site. So much crochet, so little time. This will be a busy month!

Check them out at niseylee.etsy.com

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When Crochet Is Like Real Life – Accepting the Need to Frog

Really Big bill

See the bill on that thing? It is so getting frogged

If I give it a lot of thought I start to see that I have been living the handmade life all of my life. My mother taught me how to sew at an early age so that I could make my school clothes,  There were 5 of us kids and  she was a single parent with a deadbeat ex, it was just cheaper to go to Pitkin Avenue and buy bags of fabric than to go to Korvettes or Mays and try to outfit 5 children for school. Or who knows maybe she felt about fabric the way I do about yarn – if it’s on sale it’s going in the cart LOL.

I recently took a cruise with all of my aunts and uncles and as my Auntie Vida showed me how to crochet with thread, I realized that each one of the women there had been instrumental in my “becoming”. Had they not imparted certain pieces of knowledge to the prepubescent me, I would probably not be as imaginative or creative as I am today ( or maybe I would still be imaginative but just not have the wherewithal to turn that into anything concrete). Anyway, thank you aunties (that includes you Verna) for giving me the building blocks of my handmade life.

Let me start by saying that I crochet just about all the time (when I’m not working or sleeping that is), this does some things to the body, I’ll tell ya. So I could say that lesson one is – work through the pain LOL. When I first started crocheting I lived in fear of starting over. I  absolutely dreaded  having to rip anything out once I had put time and effort into it – whether that time was one hour, one day, one week or one month.  Fortunately, over time I learned that no matter how far you’ve gone

*It’s OK to frog  and start over

Six years ago when I was laid off, I made several mistakes and miscalculations because I thought that I could not compete for jobs with smartass kids who were using laptops before they were potty trained. I was afraid that I was too old and set in my ways to be of value to an employer. Oh I did try, but one or two rejections was all it took to make me throw in the towel and accept the fact that I was obviously so not the sharpest knife in that drawer. In retrospect, I was fine, but really I was just afraid of having to start over with a new company, new technology, new co-workers.

Like Trinity in “The Matrix”, I’m not afraid anymore. I know that starting over isn’t the end, it’s just a new beginning. Starting over means giving yourself a chance to :

  • Fix a past mistake
  • Learn something new
  • Face your fear of the unknown
  • Provide a quality product (even if the product is yourself)

This knowledge has made me a better crocheter, a better worker, and a better person.

Are you afraid to frog? Care to share your story?

*Frog – rip it rip rip it

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March Madness Team Gear now available!

Are you a college hoops fan? Well I have been working on some cool stuff to help you support your team at a price that won’t eat into the Ramen noodles budget of most college students. Here is a sampling. Visit my site to order or leave me a comment.

niseylee.etsy.com

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Have You Lost Your Business Mojo Too?

In Business Momentum is Everything

momentum is everythingThe summer business season started well enough, how was I to know that things could slide so far and so fast? All the business development books talk about momentum in your business and how important that can be . In network marketing what’s really crucial is your pipeline, you have to keep filling your pipeline with personal contacts, leads, and highly qualified prospects.Ellie Drake once gave me a great visual of a pipeline as an actual pipe where prospects go in one end and wander around in there until the pipe gets so crowded that some of them pop out the other end as customers and business partners.

When the kids got out of school for the summer my pipeline was so full that I was enrolling people into my business and signing up customers like crazy. Then my dog died, no seriously my dog actually died. Stopped me cold and slowed my momentum. I tried to get back into my schedule, continue marketing, prospecting and training – but my head was not in the game. Taking on additional responsibilities at work and with my son’s Marching Band ate up a lot of my time – instead of prospecting for my business, I was prospecting businesses and churches for band donations. Instead of marketing in my downtime I was rolling out two large web projects at work.

I was not surprised to discover that I was not alone in my situation, summer time and it’s attendant family centered activities  takes a lot of us out of the game. We do our business in drips and drabs, but momentum is nonexistent and prospects wander lost through our pipelines.  At some point this summer I seem to have decided that

If I Can’t Be A Producer Then I’ll Be A Consumer

As you well know Dear Reader, I have always been obsessed with my weight. I recently saw a picture of myself in high school and I could see my hip bones I was so skinny – which came as a shock and surprise to me since I’ve always considered myself chunky. Anyway I digress,  so back in May I started doing the P90x workouts and really enjoyed that for a month or so, but life got in the way and my workouts joined my business momentum in the land of limbo (and I don’t mean Trinidad).

About a month ago a friend approached me with a weight loss product/opportunity. I was not that interested in the opportunity, but was interested in the product because it didn’t require me to chew on my nails twice a week, eliminate meals, or change much of anything about what I was already doing.  It’s actually four products (aptly titled Core4) – a pill to boost your metabolism, a lean protein shake, another pill to flush your system, and a powder that you sprinkle on your food which takes away 25% of calories that you ingest (it’s kind of like Alli without the nasty side effects). So far it’s working great, I’ve lost weight even though it’s birthday month in my house. They’ve got a cool Facebook type website that you can join for free, so check it out if you are as obsessed with your belly as I am.

So now that I am done illuminating the negative , my plan is to get back on track with my business and my life. Ameriplan has just (today) launched two great products  SecureNet & AccessSaver and a new binary compensation plan APFLEXPLUS , so I have plenty to offer!

And so do you, don’t let a temporary slump be your downfall. Even the best of us fall victim to the summer,winter,spring doldrums; but it doesn’t mean that we have to quit pursuing the dream of financial freedom. Your biggest client, your most profitable business associate, and your best customer are all waiting for you to contact them – so just do it!

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Ten Things I Enjoyed This Summer

Benjamin Bratt at awards night at Sundance
Image by qbac07 via Flickr

It’s almost official, Summer is over. You can try to hang on to her if you want but it’s not the same with the kids back in school and roads clogged with traffic. So here is my summer roundup, watched a lot of TV, read a couple of books, exercised – sometimes I did it all at the same time just to keep things interesting.  Swam in the pool next door once, got my tan for the summer (only swim once every summer, don’t ask me why).

For your reading pleasure and in no particular order, here are a few of my favorite things:

  1. TNT – they know drama. Those guys on “Dark Blue ” are hotttt in a dark undercover kinda way.
  2. Chester Himes – read a collection of his short stories, took me back to my youth. Especially loved “A Modern Fable” . A political tale which could have been written yesterday but was actually written 30 to 50 years ago.  It’s about a politician and a common man during the depression. The politician promises increased wages for WPA workers, the common man votes for him. The new senator gets in office and votes against a bill that would increase the wages of WPA workers because he just cannot see leaving that much debt for future genrations. The WPA program is abolished and the now unemployed and homeless common man gets a gun and visits the Senator…read it for yourself, Chester tells the story much better. I also liked “Prediction” it’s dark, and it’s not for the faint of heart.
  3. Purple Hibiscus by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie is the story of a young girl growing up in Nigeria. Her father is religious & has some ideas about raising children that are  “different”.  A great read.
  4. P90X – Someone gifted me with a copy of this and I absolutely love it.  The workouts are different enough to keep you interested an hard and intense enough to actually change your body. They just came out with Insanity and I’m thinking about it.  Check it all out here
  5. Burn Notice – don’t you just love the way this is narrated? How he teaches budding operatives how to be full fledged operatives? I really like Sharon Gless as his Mom,  but then I like her as anyone’s Mom and am just happy to see her looking good and doing her thing.
  6. Marching Band Camp – I am blessed with the exalted  position of “Hospitality Chair” for the Grayson High School MB. This means I got the chance to  spend two months convincing businesses and churches to donate food so that we could feed the little darlings for two weeks. Band kids are great, and I am lucky to be a band Mom.
  7. Columbus OH –  traveled there on business and took  the hubby with me, we had not had a vacation alone in many, many years (not since Montego Bay in the late 90s). Downtown Columbus is beautiful, we stayed at the Marriott Residence Inn which is an old bank converted into a hotel. We ate at Jambo a cajun restaurant across the street from the hotel which had just opened – excellent.
  8. The health care debate – well not really. But it took up so much of my summer I thought I’d mention it. I have watched in stunned disbelief  as people who have stood up for nothing in the past 10 years, began falling for everything that was thrown at them . Seriously folks – death panels?
  9. Facebook – I have had the opportunity to reconnect with so many wonderful friends of my youth all thanks to FB;  gotta love it
  10. The Cleaner – Benjamin Bratt sizzles as a recovering addict who talks to God and assists other addicts in cleaning up (ok he abducts them, handcuffs them to a bed, and makes em go cold turkey –  but they usually come around to seeing things his way).

I just started using the Core4 products from CNI, will talk about that in my Fall roundup, LOL. So what did you do this summer?

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Enter Bloganol’s Latest Contest!

Bloganol Contest

Bloganol Contest

I’ve heard that having contests is a great way to promote your blog, haven’t gotten around to doing my own but thought I would participate in one. Bloganol is having another contest where you can win prizes for completing seven simple steps.

The deadline is sometime within the next 15 to 20 days , so head over there and maybe you will win something!

The list of prizes is quite extensive:

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3rd prize

* $5 cash via Paypal.updated
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* 1 ad space 125×125 for a month on http://thereishappiness.com/
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* 1000ecs From Bloganol
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