Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Who made YOUR apron?

While perusing Facebook, I saw an article link talking about a woman who had "captured the attention of the culinary world with her stunning aprons."  Of course I had to go read it.... (at this point, it was a video.... I loathe click-bait links to videos... but watched anyway).

This video talked about how she went from working in a restaurant to making aprons.  Well that is awesome - it truly is.  The video shows the HUGE factory where they are made - en masse - to be sold at close to $100 and more.  And they all look alike (except for the colors).  

Please do not misunderstand, this woman rocks. She has captured a dream and is succeeding at it. My issue is that *she* is not making the aprons (although she might design them - it's not really clear), numerous people in a huge factory are. (She does pick the fabrics, etc., so I guess she *makes* them in that sense.)

If you are looking for an apron which is functional, fun, one-of-a-kind, and actually made by the person who claims to be making it, you can buy one of ours.

Purple and Red Floral Apron, $37.50

The Sapphire Key aprons are made by me, Sam, in my home.  I select the materials, the print patterns, and make the apron-design myself.  It takes approximately 4 hours to make one single full-size apron.  (Men's aprons take less time - and they look like the "stunning aprons" mentioned above - but better.)  Furthermore, not only are our aprons one-of-a-kind and truly made in the USA, they are about a third of the price.

Ponder that.  

When you finish pondering, click on over to our Etsy shop and support a true small business.  If you do not see something that tickles your fancy, message me and I can create an apron that does.


Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Mother's Day Coupon Code

Get Mom something retro cool from our shop...

Get 25% off with coupon code MOM2015

How about a throw-back apron paired with her favorite cookbook?

Something's Fishy Hostess Apron

A jewelry satchel to store those new earring in when she travels?

Floral Jewelry Satchel

An aromatherapy eye pillow to relieve some stress?

Pink Brocade Eye Pillow

The coupon code expires on May 1... which will give you plenty of time to receive your perfect gift right before Mother's Day!  

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Alter Ego

So, the chicks here at The Sapphire Key are gearing up to release our newest venture:

That's Sew Wrong

We will be making some of the same products that we sell at The Sapphire Key, but these will have a little more "mature" theme to them.

Think eye pillows embroidered with vulgarities warning the person who tries to awaken the sleeper.... an apron with swear words all over it.... or another apron with sharks and "ATTORNEY" embroidered on it.... an essential oils pouch that says "Good Shit"....

You get the idea.

We will be releasing a second website and Etsy shop once our "legal" stuff is in place.  We will still be making the same retro cool items that you are used to, but these will be kicked up a {mature} notch at our alter-ego.*

Until then, we leave you with this:

our new kick-ass logo...

and yes, there is no apostrophe in
"thats" - which bothers the crap out
of me, but web addresses use very little
punctuation, and that apostrophe was
one of the victims.

*Honestly, That's Sew Wrong is much more in line with our actual snarky, bitchy, sarcastic personalities!

Friday, March 27, 2015

Teacher Appreciation Week

Teacher Appreciation Week is coming up... it is May 4-8 this year, with Teacher Appreciation Day on May 5.

I don't recall ever having a day... or an entire week.... to formally appreciate my teachers growing up. But trust me - I DID appreciate them, and I still do.  The teachers nowadays do not get paid nearly enough to put up with the helicopter parents, the nanny-state, the (non-teacher-background) legislators getting involved in their business, and countless other issues that they face every single day.

So they deserve a day... a week... and anything else that can be sent their direction!

Where does The Sapphire Key fit into all this? We've got some great teacher gifts for you to send with your little-one!  We've got goodies for every price range.  Here are a few of our selections for this year:

1.  Apron
You know the teachers in the lower grades are dealing with some grubby hands... how about an apron to protect their clothes from those grub-monsters?  (*We also have men's aprons!)

Retro-Style Full Apron, $37.50

Ever notice the cute jewelry your teacher wears? How do you think she totes it around during the summer?  Most likely a baggie... Save her. Give her something nicer - for HER - not for her classroom.

Jewelry Satchel, Small $12.50 / Medium $17.50

We also call these dream pillows.  Herbs are nestled inside to help facilitate sweet dreams while sleeping.  And trust me - your teacher could use some sweet dreams!

Aromatherapy Pillow, $10.00

Our eye pillows are filled with organic flax seed and French lavender. The weight provides light pressure on the eyes, which helps relieve headaches and stress when coupled with the lavender scent.

Eye Pillow, $12.50

Our sweet owls are filled with soft fiberfill, and just a hint of lavender to smell nice.  The perfect gift for the classroom... wise old owl, cute as a button, smelling nice and getting rid of the "kid funk" . . . . perfect!

Owl Stuffie, Small $10.00 / Large $15.00

We are always adding new patterns to our product lines, so keep checking back.  And if you need a special order - for color, pattern, whatever - just message us, we'll be happy to work with you to get the perfect gift!

Visit our shop on Etsy, The Sapphire Key!


Friday, January 23, 2015

Sewing Room - Before

About three years ago I converted one of our guest rooms into my sewing room.  I wanted something orange and pink.  I set it up the best way I could and have been using it as such ever since.

But lately, in whatever spare time I find in front of the TV, I've been watching HGTV... which is dangerous.  Very very dangerous.

Now I want a "new and improved" sewing room. Shhh.... don't tell my husband, he's not aware of it yet!  (Well, the cat will be out of the bag if he reads this!)

I'm not really sure what I want to do, but there has got to be a more efficient and aesthetically pleasing solution.

At any rate, here is my room as it is today (today: metaphorically speaking... it's actually rather cluttered with half-finished aprons, fabric to be put away, boxes from shipments.... but you get the gist... and do not mind the picture quality - these were taken with my iPhone):

View looking in
The room really is not that orange, I think it is my stellar lighting and photography skills. The papasan chair is crazy cozy and will oftentimes have the butt of my daughter or my husband in it! The footstool cube also serves as storage - but if memory serves me correctly it has a doll, a blanket, and a set of headphones in it currently as it has been commandeered by my kid.  The window pane was salvaged from an old house.  I glued cork to it and use it to pin notes, pictures, a calendar... whatever.

Sewing Corner...
I love my orange chair - it rolls, it spins, it's cushy!
I've got three main machines:  a Janome for the bulk of my sewing; a Brother serger; and a Brother embroidery (which doubles as a button-hole maker and bobbin winder).  This set-up is actually ideal... I do not want to change this area much.  With my rolly-swivelly chair I can swing around and get to all three machines with ease. (...as well as to the ipod when a wholly inappropriate song comes on and the kid is in the room...)  See that clear case under the double sewing table?  That is an artist case which is the perfect size for rick-rack and binding tape. Highly recommend one.  As for thread storage on the wall, I keep the bobbin on the bottom of the peg and the thread on top of that.  That way each color stays together.  I also have the thread color number facing up so I can see quickly what the numbers are in case any need to be replaced on my (almost) daily trip to Joann's.  My main scissors hang there as well.

Sheet for a closet door.  I'm classy like that.
Another view of my sewing area.  The shelf in front holds my serger thread, a couple of baskets with lavender, flax seed, and silk brocade fabric (for eye pillow making).  The three-drawer containers hold buttons that I use for aprons, my tags, vecro, elastic, and something else that I cannot recall off of the top of my head!  The tall cabinet has a lot of my apron fabric (I like to use a heavier weight). It is wrapped on corrugated plastic sheets (much like in a fabric store).  I also have a basket of zippers in there.   

Cutting Table; Shipment Center
The rolling cart next to the tall cabinet has various stabilizers, ironing items, and extra shopping bags for craft shows.  The closet has a wire shelf with mostly shipping supplies (envelopes, scale, etc.).  I also store my finished aprons in the closet, as well as tables and display items for craft shows.  The cutting table is just a bathroom cabinet with a small 4' piece of countertop on it.  In the drawers I keep tissue paper and other shipping items.  I've got a key hook strip above the cutting table with clearly marked scissors... one for paper, one for material, one for threads - that way if the non-sewers in the house look for scissors, they know which ones to grab (although their use is highly frowned upon!).   

Fabric to the right... fabric in front...
fabric fabric everywhere!
The shelf right in front has chevron, college/nfl team prints, flannel, and duck cloth.

Storage and Inventory
This is where I keep a lot of my inventory (in the larger containers).  I also keep fabric scraps in the bottom center pink bins, and then a lot of my material on the right.  The photo boxes contain patterns, receipts, camera stuff, machine manuals and accessories.

So that's the space for now.  Oh - an area I forgot to photograph is behind the door - I keep my ironing board and iron back there.

I don't really know what I want, but it's not what I currently have.  So this "before" may remain a before for quite some time...


Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Preview of New Apron Designs

I've been working pretty hard at making some new aprons... not only in the style, but in the patterns/designs used.  Here's a sneak-peek at some of the new patterns we will be listing soon:

Some of the new aprons are full aprons, some have twirl skirts, some are tiered, and some are hostess... a little something for everyone!  

Don't forget - we are more than happy to do special orders... just message us!

~ Sam

Monday, January 5, 2015

My Struggle is Real

Yes, I have a problem.  A material problem.
Cathy sent this to me:

She knows me well.

~ Sam