Category Archives: MAKING IT

I Have No Patience

If you’d like a little glimpse into my psyche, this is a classic example of how my brain works …

I was sitting here at the dining room table, returning emails, going through fabric orders, doing necessary things, when I looked up and thought:

“You know, I have half a quart of the paint I want to use in this room sitting in the pantry …”

My Hands Made It_painting the dining room

A) This took less than an hour, so it’s not that big of a deal.

B) This also required pretty much all of the energy I have for the day, so I’ll have to live with it like this for a while.

C) I don’t think I should paint above the picture rail on my own, so I’ll have to wait for someone else to help with that. Who knows when that will happen.

D) I don’t care about any of those other things, because I LOVE IT.

E) That lamp just died in my dining room’s arms tonight. It looks so good in here.


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*ack! For the first time ever, I hit “publish” when I meant to click “preview.” Whooooops.*

I just put together my ‘to-do’ list for the week and I’m already hating my Friday self for not getting nearly enough done. Like, I just don’t even know that this list is possible. And I’m really missing all of the energy I used to have. My body just can’t keep up at the moment, and my brain could not care less. I am at once completely frustrated and totally at peace. So figure that one out.

Today I must devote entirely to TAXES, and you know how much I love that. I’m super proud of myself for finally figuring out Quick Books, and that should be really great this time next year, but in the meantime …. ehhh. I am determined to focus and finish that up today – please send me all of your extra energy and concentration.

As for the rest of the week …

I’ve got lots of fabric to order, patterns to make, muslins to sew, photographs to take and lots and lots of sketching to do. Of which I’ve already done a considerable amount …

custom bridal sketches by veronica sheaffer

… for all of the complaining I do, it’s been a VERY good year so far. Not all of these ended up as the final choice either, so imagine how much fun those are going to be. I’ve got some very stylish brides this year!


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2013 Custom Bridal! And … the Dentist

I have to go to the dentist today. Wah. For someone who has basically no issues with their teeth, I shouldn’t be SO upset every time I have to go. But whatever. I’m bummed. I’m also bummed at my body this morning. Sometimes I think I have kind of a cute little bump going, but other times it’s one giant barrel torso and I just look like a blob. A blob who gets to walk around in a bathing suit this weekend. A blob who can barely fit into any of her bathing suits. P.S. I’ve only gained FIVE POUNDS.

I think I’m having one of those days. You know, the kind that makes you feel like a schlump when you spend all of 30 seconds looking at Pinterest? Everyone is prettier and thinner and tanner and happier and more successful and creative and driven than you and you can go ahead and just collapse into a puddle on the floor. Thanks, PINTEREST.

No really, you guys. Things are especially good, I’m just pi$$ed about the dentist.

I haven’t told you at all about my fun, new custom brides yet. I’m so excited about ALL OF THEM. And because the baby is due in August, my goal is to have everyone ready by early July. Ooh la la! Bridal Whirlwind! The approach is a bit different this year – I’ll be focusing mostly on the muslins myself and using additional sewers to stitch up the actual gowns – but as always, I’ll try to document as much as possible along the way. Like this foundation and muslin for Lauren:

silk taffeta foundation corsolette

muslin fitting


It doesn’t look like much now, but it will eventually become something similar to this look from the Valentino Spring ’12 Couture collection … but completely different. We’re using an antique lace that I’ve had in my stash for going on ten years, and I’m thrilled. Thrilled about the whole thing, really. Thrilled about all of my brides. Not one of them is going super-traditional, and we’ve got LOTS of color this year. I can’t wait to show you all of the goods!

And now I must go floss.


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Embrace the Built-In; Be the Built-In

I love complaining to you guys. You may not love it so much, but I almost always solve my problem immediately after hitting ‘publish’. Which is exactly what happened yesterday. You should be a therapist.

As you’ll remember, I was upset that the wooden built-ins in the dining room were too dark and too wood and altogether too sad. But then I realized I was fighting things that could not be changed. It was time to embrace the dark and embrace the wood and then maybe it wouldn’t be so sad. And behold:

navy gray dining room mock up

That is one fine a$$ lookin’ dining room, and I don’t care what anyone says. It’s dark, it’s kinda moody, it’s magnificent. And when I put it next to a picture of the living room, worlds collide into a rainbow of Skittles.

All I need now is a new coat of paint on the wall, bamboo shades in the built-in and an amazing painting to keep the fun, bright stuff moving around the room.

Life is complete. Done and done.


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We Made This …

… and we didn’t use our hands. Heh heh heh.

11 week pregnancy scan _ yes sir thats my baby

For real, you guys. We’ve got a baby on the way! It’s so weird and so amazing and so everything, I gotta tell you. It’s just … YES. *high five*

So listen up, first of all, even though I’ve got some hormone … issues, I will forever remain your lover and I vow to not make this place entirely about that stuff. I mean, this is a lifestyle/work blog – or whatever – and I talk a lot about my life so I’m not going to pretend this major thing isn’t happening, but I’ve still got my other stuff going on as well. So you don’t have to leave if you’re not into babies. I also know first-hand, after suffering a miscarriage, how difficult it can be to read other people going on and on about their babies when you’re struggling with that area of your life, so know that I will always be aware and sensitive to that. I love you guys. I have no plans to change anything here. I will not start writing about organic baby food or make-your-own laundry detergent. It’s still me.

That being said ….

I’m very, VERY happy.


By the way, my brother Austin pointed out that the above picture looks like I’m pregnant with a bowling pin. A good looking bowling pin, as he put it. Which … okay yes, it looks like a bowling pin. But with adorable little hands. Which were dancing at the time. (!!) Anyway, you don’t have to point that out in the comments, ’cause I’m already aware. And I don’t even like bowling, so shut up. Plus, this was taken two weeks ago so the baby looks exactly like a miniature Ryan Gosling or Grace Kelly by now, obviously.

P.S. We saw the bottoms of it’s little feet during the scan and I pretty much died right then and there.



Painting Another Rug

I wonder if this is going to earn me some kind of nickname eventually. I’m painting ANOTHER rug. Now my fourth. And I’m always so in love with the finished project that I can’t imagine ever stopping. Unless I someday make enough money that I can just go buy the dang rugs I’m trying to copy. In which case, I will likely never do anything ever again.

Anyway …

I have struggled with what to throw down in the dining room since the very beginning. The rug in the living room has a black background, so it seems like the adjoining room should also have something dark on the floor. But then I painted the dining room table black, so I couldn’t have a black rug too. And I had these indoor/outdoor rugs I bought at Target, which didn’t work out in the studio and landed here, ’cause whatever. And then I liked how durable they were, since the front door opens up to this room, but I didn’t like the pattern on top of all of the other patterns in here. And THEN I happened to have some leftover navy fabric on the table while I cleaned out another room and all of the planets aligned and life as we know it suddenly made sense.

Navy rug, guys.

So I just went into the pantry and grabbed the best dark blue I could find in my stash, sat down and started painting.

painted rug dining room _ overdyed rug style

I’ve done half so far and already love it in here – the surrounding colors really pop now. Don’t you think? I’m also super excited that it looks like an over-dyed rug, with the pattern still showing through, but subtly. And because it’s a woven, outdoor rug (probably synthetic to begin with), the texture hasn’t changed at all. I may or may not go back over a few places – I haven’t decided yet. I want to get the other half painted first, but I’ve run out of paint. Wah wah. Back to Home Depot.


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Kitchen Progress

This week started off well and then I basically fell asleep at the wheel. Sorrr-rryyy. I’ve been busy making my house dope, yo. While also trying to keep everything else rolling. From like the second the clock strikes twelve on January 1st, I start worrying about taxes. I am a SLAVE TO TAXES. It’s not even the paying of them so much – it’s the doing them. I haaaaate iiiiiiiit.

Which is why I avoid them and instead work on my kitchen. Ta-da!

So I’ve decided to eliminate all of the jadeite from the room. I still love the stuff, but I’ve been displaying it for approximately two million years and I’m sort of over it at the moment. So I switched it out with my great-grandmother’s china, a few pieces of milk glass and some rad gold stuff.

Please ignore the sub-par photos – I had to use my phone.

navy kitchen _ open shelving _ cream and gold china displayIt make-a me very happy. And then ’cause I moved that out, I got rid of the jade green (and stupid roosters) on my vintage hutch (or pie safe or whatever you want to call it), and painted it all ivory and cream. It’s much cleaner-looking now. And more modern. But still adorable. I also have big plans for the wall right next to it. Like, hiding that stupid outlet, for starters. I mean. What? And then I think I might paint the chair a bright color in high-gloss. ‘Cause it’s just a metal kitchen chair and whatever, why not? Plus, really, no more jade.

ivory and cream pie safe cabinet _ kitchen hutch vintage

And then I’m going to make a bunch of throw pillows for this beautiful thing:

kitchen nook bench _ blue leopard velvet skirted bench

I finished the bench! This picture is super dumb, but I love it in person. Trust. I still need to assemble the table, but whatever. I have taxes to do! Haha like I would do those first. Anyway, I’m still undecided about the fabric for the pillows, but I know absolutely that there’s going to be some bright, awesome artwork on either side of the shutters. I know, because I’ve already ordered it. And I think the table is going to be this one from Ikea – white top, shiny gold legs.

So to recap …. we’ve basically got a navy/ivory/gold thing happening with splashes of color throughout. I can’t tell you how excited I am about it all. And it feels so much more calm already – even with a drop cloth on the floor and tools scattered everywhere. I’m suddenly just hanging out in here, which I’ve never done before.

Who knows? Maybe I’ll start cooking!

Hahaha. No.


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Business Time

I got the perfect fabric for the kitchen nook yesterday …

blue velvet leopard _ aw yeah

The color is deeper in person – velvet is tricky to photograph. Oh, I’m sorry, BLUE LEOPARD PRINT VELVET, is tricky. My goodness, you guys, I can’t wait. It’s soooo gooood in heeeere. My mom and I also came up with some awesome changes for the entire room, which have me feeling very optimistic and impatient. I hate having to actually do stuff. I just want it done.

Also, I moved all of the furniture around in the studio and it is 500% improved. Isn’t it funny that just moving your desk five feet can make you feel so much more productive? I’m really happy with the changes. Today, I’ll go hang 14 feet of curtains and watch my head explode from excitement.

Later, dudes.

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Studio Redesign

I need to go to the studio today and do some major cleaning. The place is a dump. It looks presentable, but it is most definitely NOT. Everything needs to be reorganized, and since all of the gowns and accessories are currently out for the trunk show (!!! – don’t forget to make an appointment!), this seems like a great opportunity to make a giant mess. And while I’m at it, I think I’ll do some┬áre-figuring/redecorating as well.

After being in the space for six months, I now know what works beautifully and what doesn’t. I most definitely need a bigger desk – I hate sitting at the current one, because everything is essentially closing in on me – and we need more room in front of the mirror. The set up now doesn’t allow much room for trains and amazing veils, which are obviously way important. It also just needs some finishing touches and a bit more drama. So for logistics, I’m going to rearrange the furniture into something more like this:

studio_workshop_office floor plan

Floor plan created using

With the couch opposite the mirror, I gain a lot more twirling space. This also allows for a larger desk and a bit more separation between the fun stuff and the masses of paperwork I inevitably acquire. The entire sewing and cutting area will be closed off with curtains, so I don’t have to worry about cleaning up those messes when my lovely ladies come in, and I will finally be able to get the dumb fridge hidden away completely back there as well. The decor will essentially remain the same with a few higher impact pieces thrown in …

studio_workshop_office style board

… the most dramatic being the giant poster above the sofa, which will be soooo raaaaadddd. The poster hanging by gold chains in front of the curtains ain’t too shabby either. The punches of black also make the space a bit stronger, I think. I dunno, I like ‘em. Oh and as for the desk … this might sound completely crazy, but it’s never been at the perfect height for me, so I’m kind of thinking I’ll just secure a larger Ikea table top over the existing desk. I still really like the design and everything. We’ll see how it works out. The bottom of the desk may be too low if I do that. Anyway

I’m excited!

[Poster images by Billy Rood]

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Another Kitchen Makeover

I’m redoing the kitchen again. I KNOW. Not the whole thing – just the little nook under the window, because a) I’ve never been completely comfortable sitting there, and b) we have to move the entire table every time we want to open the shutters. So then I never open the shutters, and I end up using the overhead light when I could just open the dang window and let in the sun, which I would obviously prefer. It’s dumb. It finally occurred to me recently that what we really need is an actual kitchen nook. Like, a built-in one:

kitchen nook style board

But not actually built-in, ’cause this is an apartment and I don’t feel like building a dang kitchen nook. Instead it will be two free-standing benches that meet in the corner and are upholstered in navy velvet with white piping. Mmmm. With lots of storage underneath for pasta machines and mandolins and lots of other giant stuff we use like three times a year. Anyway, then we’ll just have pillows in front of the shutters, which I can easily bat down when I need to open up the window – much easier than moving a dang table – and it will be comfier than the set up we have now.

For the table, I really want to use a bright pink wire bin with a glossy white table top, but we’re running into some wobbly issues at the moment. I think I need an actual table pedestal inside of the wire bin, but that’s kind of bumming me out. Mostly because I have the bin and I have the top and I just want to see my amazing new table set up already!

Dudes, I’m cranky today. Can you tell?

Anyway, I’m really excited to have this project done, but I don’t feel like actually doing it. But it’s gonna be so great. But I’m so tired. But it’ll be so nice to have this set up when out-of-town friends come to visit in two weeks. But that only gives me two weeks to make everything. But I know I can do it. But I don’t wanna.

Ugh. There’s my imagined kitchen – ta-da!