Monday, December 20, 2010
It was a long hard day at the machine but overall I am very happy with the results. Now if only I could sleep a little to catch up...
Thursday, December 16, 2010
She sent me this adorable snowman and Mug with a them being Peace. I really just adore it. She sent along some great coffee and beautiful tin and recipe of her favorite sweet treat. I really think it was all so very thoughtful.
For her, I sent my snow flake themed mug rug and I hoped she enjoyed it as much as I did making it.
Tuesday, December 14, 2010
I took it out on Sunday to see if I had it in me to find a fix. I ended up cutting off the offending gash, adding some ric rac and a binding of the same fabric.
I hope it works...
Then I finished up last night the other apron for the other cousin...tonight I need to make the mom + sister aprons of this family and figure out 2 little girl aprons...yeah no time like last minute.
Monday, December 13, 2010
Congratulations the fat quarters go to Candi from the QB - Candi, I will try to locate you through your blog and the QB.
Now off to finish up the apron for a cousin using this pattern that Karen posted and used for her daughters Christmas apron.!
Thursday, December 9, 2010
Just leave a comment and how you met me or found my blog and I'll select the winner by random number generator. The deadline to submit is 6 pm pacific time, Sunday, December 12th. I will post the winner on Monday, December 13.
Good luck and happy posting.
*Update, if you post on the blog or on my flickr page of the fabric, I will enter you into the drawing. This way you have two ways to comment. One comment per poster will be used.
Thursday, December 2, 2010
Monday, November 29, 2010
I finished it by noon and was very happy with it and took a long hot shower. Then that's when my husband said he needed to got to the hospital. So dripping wet, hair in a turban I threw on clothes and shoes, grabbed my handbag and dropped the turban and hawled butt to the hospital. Seems he had a very bad UTI (urinary track infection) - I know TMI! Anyway, they patched him up and sent him home with instructions to see his primary care doctor today. He's resting and not to happy with his situation.
I'll head into the office for a few hours to catch up then back to take care of him and get him where he needs to be.
I love him, but boys can't handle pain well or being sick.
Saturday, November 27, 2010
I made the full turkey dinner from scratch (minus some rolls outta a box) with all the trimmings.
Then I went into full craft mode. Just before I left, I made this armrest pin cushion. It has become my most favorite sewing tool. I do a lot of hand finishing and stitching at night while watching TV and many of morning woke up to an armrest peppered with pens. Now they are in the pin cushion! It handy little pockets to stow my snips in or a pattern.
I've also made 4 Christmas stockings, 4 ornaments, 20 gift tags for a swap I'm doing with Karen and Regena! ( plus Carolyn and Mark). Plus a few kitchen towels and 2 sets of pot holders.
Now I need to sew up 6 aprons before Christmas and my sewing is all done!
Tuesday, November 9, 2010
My friend Karen is having a give away as we speak. She is giving away the most awesome sewing organizer that she made in this adorable fabric. Of course I signed up but so can you. Go check it out.
Stay tuned for my own give away when I reach 100 posts!
Monday, November 8, 2010
This is my assortment I'm working from to choose what to use for the mug rug.
So I decided to branch out from apron swaps and try a mug rug swap. To be honest I had to google around to find out what that was. Also, Aunt Pitty Pat had a link to a fabulous flickr photostream of amazing mug rugs.
I bought a mug yesterday but am second guessing it as "the" one for the mug rug inspiration. I think I'll go see what my favorite local gift shop has on hand before I start the sewing.
I'm a bit excited to sew this up just so I can try out some of my new found quilting skills. Not that I'm all that, but maybe I can re-purpose the sawtooth star skills somehow. I hope my partner and I get to email each other so we can know more about each others likes and dislikes. It really helps to create something they might actually like and use.
Saturday, November 6, 2010
I've touched on this in the past. But as I work more and more into my inner crafter, I'm finding I am evolving in my creative methods. I now look at burlap with a whole new desire. That I see how linen just may be the most perfect fabric out there but with it's own share of angst.
I look at something in my house that just isn't working right and ponder about making it slip cover or what fabric I have on hand to drape over, around or under it. Then I think about what the pattern pieces would look like.
What is the method of being creative. What does it mean to you? Is it just a form of expression, does it manage your stress or does it oooze from your very existence?
Friday, November 5, 2010
As I'm a bit new to the sewing arena, I try to make myself learn one new technique every week (when I'm not traveling). This week the challenge was prairie points. You see I'm in this Christmas stocking swap with some from where I have to make 4 stockings for each of them representing myself. I thought the prairie points would be a good character representation. The ups and downs the fun sassy appeal of prairie points. That's my rational and I'm sticking to it.
Over at Moda Lissa there is a great tutorial on Prairie Points.
I tried this last night and got some decent results.
I also want to try this on the baby quilt for the hub's grand niece...we will just have to see.
Thursday, November 4, 2010
I tried to figure out how to follow stamina and I decided strength would be good. Strength is either muscles and brawn or strength can be in carrying emotional luggage.
Strength seems to be very much a hereditary characteristic. Strong people usually produce strong offspring. Giving them skills to endure challenges in life or even to lift heavy objects.
I have a grandmother that is so strong it's unbelievable. She's 90 years old, and an inspiration to me. She has always had such a good outlook, even in tough times. She's had enough tough times for one lifetime already. She is kind to her family and loves all of us so very much. She is where my strength comes from. I am proud to be her granddaughter.
Wednesday, November 3, 2010
How much stamina a person has, can define their fortitude and resolve. Can they survive their situation and come out the other side? God likes to see what our stamina levels are and see how our faith's stamina withstands the challenges.
They say God doesn't throw anything at you that you can't withstand. I wonder though, just how much of what is thrown is really from God and not our own conjuring.
It's not if you finish, but how you finish that matters.
Tuesday, November 2, 2010
In other news I made one of the Babuska dolls from the tutorial over at Wee Folk Art.
She came out kinda snarky. Think I'll remove her freckles and see if that helps then stitch a back onto her and stuff her good.
I need to find out what is the best needle for sewing felt because the number 28 I was using just didn't seem to be ideal. Today my index finger is a bit sore.
But on the way home last night I stopped off at Joann's for some fabric to make the hubs new grand niece a little blankie and this is what I found. I hope the satin binding doesn't kick my butt and ruin the blankie.
Monday, November 1, 2010
So I worked on a table runner yesterday. Remember those fat quarters I bought for the FAS Autumn swap? Well, I decided they'd make a great table runner for this cabinet in the front room. I found the friendship braid quilt patter and used that.
I did some free motion quilting on a section - more to get the practice in than to do a design. I quilted the rest in straight lines.
For the basting, I used the spray I bought last week to see how that works. It worked well just next time I will be more careful with overspray on the extra backing so it doesn't stick to everything as I'm trying to quilt.
Everything was great until I came in to my office/sewing room and found the disaster I left yesterday when in the heat of creativity.
Worse part is I've made the runner too wide by about 2 inches. I swear I measured it twice...
Friday, October 29, 2010
What are the things you look forward to the most this time of year? Halloween is this weekend and that triggers the "Holiday Season" when all things begin to run-a-muck.
Is the good food you get to make and eat on Thanksgiving, is it Black Friday shopping, the football games with leftovers, the wrapping of packages or visiting with family?
For me I like doing a little bit of all of it. To me that makes it festive. I enjoy the cooler weather, the holiday music in the stores, the great smelling candles that come out. I love the seasonal flavored coffees. I just don't like too much of any one thing - too many long check out lines - too much holiday music - too much wrapping - I want just the right amount of each. I want to do holiday tea at the Four Season's again. It really makes the season bright.
Being that we live far way from our families it has always just be "us" for the holidays. We enjoy it but we miss all the craziness that family brings. Which is why this year we're diving in. We are trying to get to my husband's family for Christmas weekend = there are a lot of family up there and it will be some holiday madness for sure. I really love all of them - they have been so kind and warm to me. I am truly fortunate to have married into their family.
On that note tell me what you like the most?
Thursday, October 28, 2010
It took me 9 more months to finish it. It traveled with me to Europe, Brazil and I don't remember how many other places.
I then found a local needlepoint shop that I just adore. They are so patient with me and help me to learn. They looked at my finished wild flowers and were confident it was ok to bind into a pillow. It now rests on the guest room bed at our house. The next year I did a black and tan dachshund for my hubs for Christmas in memory It too rests on the guest room bed.
So I felt like I'd "learned" needlepoint so I wanted to tackle cross stitch. I went to my local shop and said I need to learn how to do this. They sat me down and showed me the basics. How to make the back look as good as the back, how to pick floss, find the center, etc. I'm really enjoying it.
Here is my first project. Black Santa by Birds of Feather patterns. Now I'm working on Red Santa - then Green and Gold Santas. I just need to figure out what to do with the Santas after I get them all done.
Wednesday, October 27, 2010
I made a Christmas lap quilt. I love the fabric I found in a charm pack. Then I had these tree patterns left over from the wine bottle covers I made so I used them as my quilting pattern on the quilt.
It was the first time I used flannel to back a quilt (I'm new into quilting) so I had a little bit of puckering but nothing a good ironing hasn't solved.
Overall I'm very happy with it except that my binding on one corner just didn't want to miter down as well as I would have liked.
Now on to November anything in any medium but Christmas themed! I have got to come up with an idea!
Monday, October 25, 2010
I worked on this apron for Cousin #1. See post from Saturday. It's has ric rac, crushed velvet trim, top stitched pleats.
Than I added a linen ruffle to the bottom edge and wanted to hand finish the back with some lace hem tape. So I started trimming off to 1/8" to the seam so the hem tape would lay flat.
When it happened. I nicked the skirt with the points of the scissors. I got so frustrated and I mean boiling mad at myself. Is it fixable - yes but I'll need to applique, add a linen flower, or another row of ruffles. Or something! I was almost finished except I wanted to hand stitch the back of the waist band and the hem tape.
Now it's all jumbled up on my sewing table waiting for me to come up with the right solution.
Madness I say!
Sunday, October 24, 2010
Here is my favorite square.
and here is the second square I got finished.
I think they are ok for a scrape quilt. There is a pattern right? You can see it, it's just not me right?
Saturday, October 23, 2010
I woke up kind of early and the dogs and hubs are still sleeping so I've been in my sewing room scheming about what to start on next.
Being that we hope to go back to Seattle sometime during the holidays, I want to finally sew up the aprons for my husband's cousins. So I got the fabric out that I bought for them and pressed it. One cousin wants a full apron - the greens and orange fabric and the other cousin wants a half apron the salmon and linen fabrics.
I also was struggling with my Christmas quilt. The flannel backing just didn't really tie it all together like I hoped. I pressed it and the binding down and it looks much better.
Now I have this "fall" fabric 1/2 yard stack that I bought thinking I'd make a table runner. Well, I pressed that too thinking the rain is in my favor.
Then there was that stack of beautiful fat quarters that I bought thinking it would work for FAS 12 swap that I didn't use. I pressed them too and they may get worked up with that red jelly roll I bought for the Cherry quilt because I think it will be pieced up with the polka dot fabric.
Rain - yeah - you can stay for a while.
Thursday, October 21, 2010
I troll through a lot crafting and sewing blogs. Every so often you see the persons pin cushion. It made me look at my pin cushion. I see this as being one of those personality assessments. Like the shape of your lipstick tells type of person you are.
My mom always had the classic tomato and strawberry pin cushion.
Then there is mine. I bought it off Etsy when we first moved into the house and I dusted off my mom's old Singer Touch n Sew sewing machine. I liked mine so much I ordered two more pin cushions for Christmas gifts for my husband's BFF's wife and my BFF.
When I came up with this blog subject, I found all kinds of pin cushions. I like this one a lot. The Eyeball! Isn't that great? Maybe that I like it because it's almost Halloween.
I also found this pattern that I think may just need to focused on as a back up pin cushion. I am suddenly in love with chickens.
Here is Karen's Owl - he pops up in a some of the pictures on her blog. She made him isn't he adorable?
I flipped through Regena's blog convinced she didn't use a pin cushion and then I found this. A box of pins...Apparently, when she needs to she uses pins in bulk. She'll be sending over a picture of a pin cushion so I can see it soon :).
Here is Regena's Pin Cushion ;)
On Val's website she showed this adorable Buster Brown pin cushion she received in a swap from Fran. Isn't that the cutest thing you ever saw?
So when I got home yesterday it was after an especially roller coastery day at work, and I found the FAS apron swap box on my door step. I instantly cheered up.
When I opened it I was so happy to see this perfect apron covered in dachshunds. It was just perfect! The polka dots are adorable. The tuckins included a great copper star hanger, a thanksgiving cookbook, and canvas magnetic picture hanger - all very cool.
After oooooing and ahhhhing, I had to head to this month's Junior League general meeting. There was a guest speaker from Susan B. Komen for breast cancer awareness. I actually, made it through without tearing up. It's a hard subject for me to "re-live" as my mom passed away over 10 years ago from breast cancer. As much as I love this time of year, it's a hard month with all the pink everywhere.
I miss my mommy so much. I know I'm a grown up with my own family, but not being able to call her and feel her hands is the worst.
Ironically, my sister was hosting an event called Bras for the Cause last night in Texas with all her real estate people. They had some of the Dallas Cowboys there and pink fire trucks. It's a great event and I'm so happy my sister is doing so much to fund research. I am very luck she is my big sister.
Wednesday, October 20, 2010
I have bought fabric to make the following:
one for BFF
one for husband cousin #1
one for husband cousin #2
one for next door neighbor
one Crazy Dryer Sheet Quilt for the hubs
pot holders and kitchen towels for a friend and step mother
polar fleece cover for pad of the dog house
a tunic for myself for vacation in February
a tree skirt for Christmas for our new house
table runner for Thanksgiving for our tradition
This is what I currently have on my list. This list loves to change.
So who do you sew for and what UFO's do you have?
Tuesday, October 19, 2010
I make this every fall and I just love it. I have subscribed to Southern Living Magazine for 10+ years and I got this one a long time ago and had been my go to sweet treat for Thanksgiving. I hope you like it too.
- 3 cups sugar
- 3/4 cup melted butter
- 2/3 cup evaporated milk
- 1/2 cup canned pumpkin
- 2 tablespoons corn syrup
- 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- 1 (12-ounce) package white chocolate morsels
- 1 (7-ounce) jar marshmallow crème
- 1 cup chopped pecans, toasted
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Stir together first 6 ingredients in a 3 1/2-quart saucepan over medium-high heat, and cook, stirring constantly, until mixture comes to a boil. Cook, stirring constantly, until a candy thermometer registers 234° (soft-ball stage) or for about 12 minutes.
Remove pan from heat; stir in remaining ingredients until well blended. Pour into a greased aluminum foil-lined 9-inch square pan. Let stand 2 hours or until completely cool; cut fudge into squares.
Notes: Line pan with aluminum foil before you begin to cook the fudge. Once the candy thermometer reaches 234° and the remaining ingredients are added, quickly spoon the fudge into the pan.
However, here in Amy's sweat shop I have some helpers. As you can see they think the polk dots are the way to go. Anything I'm working on becomes they're play ground/nap area/I'm just going to star at mom spot.
I love them little weiners but am never surprised when I find a hedge hog squeeky toy in my scrap bundle where they buried it.
Monday, October 18, 2010
This weekend has been a dreary one. Gray skies and light drizzle. Last night I slept with the window open. It was so nice to hear the rain in the middle of the night. I know this must sound silly to some people, but it just hardly ever rains here in Southern California. I miss the rain. I moved here from the Seattle area and I really like the climate up there. Here it's always perfect blue skies and 70 degrees and nice coastal breeze. It never changes except for the few days of the year where it rains.
We have two fireplaces in our house - not sure why - and we've never used them. However, I may use the one in the living room tonight. Would be great to look forward to at the end of the day.
My only issue with rain here is the traffic. It will be a long slow drive to the office today. Fortunately, I have 2 conference call early this morning that I will do from home and then drive in.
My garden is loving this moisture. The picture is my husband riding in the rain in Vancouver Canada. I took the picture from the warmth of my dad's car.
Saturday, October 16, 2010
I was thinking about how I go through a process when I want to make something. Especially, if I don't have a pattern or a guide. On sewing blogs I sometimes see where the design has been drawn out. I will occasionally scribble out a sketch of what I want to make.
My process is one that works or mulls inside my head for days - sometimes weeks. This week I was chatting with Karen and Regena about an apron idea I've been thinking about. One where the bib buttons on and off so it can be a full and/or half apron. I'm sure this has been done before, but I don't have a pattern and I'm pretty sure of my design right now.
In my mind this apron skirt is mostly white (not a good apron color). It has splashes of bright color stitched here and there. The bib is mostly red with some white dots or flowers. The attachment of bib to apron is by a row of big red buttons - probably 4 shiny buttons, 1 inchers. The ties and waist band are some sort of fabric with all the colors - white, red, yellow, green, blue and the ties are wide and long for double wrapping for a bow in the front. I see some bright felted flowers somewhere too.
None of this is written down on a sketch pad or scrape of paper you see because it's all in my head still.
Friday, October 15, 2010
Most people that "know" me understand I made a decision. I made it a long time a go. Not because I have any issue with them but because my life has never been very friendly towards them. I don't have kids or nor to I plan for them. My husband pretty much feels the same way. His theory is they don't make car seats for motorcycles.
Kids are fun, they have great personalities. I have no aversion to them, I'm not a kid hater. Even though I don't particularly like having the screaming baby around me for long flights - doesn't mean I don't have compassion for it's mother who is worn out and remorseful for the situation. I realize she needs some rest more than I could ever imagine.
So my point being that when I joined the Junior League I had no idea how involved I'd be directly with kids. With my decision (see above), I eventually ended up with friends and other couples that had made a similar decision. So I am rarely around kids - I mean rarely. So I am filling ill equiped for some of the JL activities.
The kids are now intimidating to me. Will I be able to speak "kid speak"?, can I relate, will I be able to engage them? Considering I am an offspring of a lady that was the Pied Piper of Kids, you'd think I have a clue. My mom would have a flock of kids around her in a matter of minutes.
Tomorrow I have my "new member" project for the JL. It's a kids Fall Food Fair at the local homeless shelter. We've got exercise/play stations, healthy snack foods, and then crafts. I obviously took crafts thinking it would easy. Now I'm a stressed out mess of this.
I've made up some great food pyramid handouts, fruit/veggie Bingo cards and two sets of fruit/veggie concentration games. Is this corny? I mean they are "hand made". They are bright and colorful but handmade. Will the kids think I cheaped out on them? I'm not much of a scraper so they look handmade.
I guess I just need to channel my inner kid and just go with it.
Thursday, October 14, 2010
1.) I always use my angle arm magnifying lamp over my sewing area. Mostly for the extra light and the lense for seam ripping.
2.) I sew barefoot or in socks.
3.) I behave as if I'm working in a sweat shop. Head down, focused and as fast as possible.
4.) I sometimes listen to music but mostly it's just the hum of my machine.
5.) I can't seam to learn that the ironing board is not a good cutting table.
6.) I make a disaster of my craft room and refuse to straighten it up until the project is complete.
7.) I keep my little fiskar fine point scissors at the machine for trimming threads.
8.) I keep all my scissors at my sewing table within easy reach.
9.) I keep my bobbin holder next to my machine in case I need to speed load.
10.) My seam ripper holder is "stuck" to my sewing table with double sided tape so it can't be moved, lost, or otherwise AWOL.
When I take a stretch break I'm usually all bound up in the sewing hunch.
But it's soo much fun.
Wednesday, October 13, 2010
I stole this recipe. It's not mine, but I sure use it a lot around here.
It's my BFF's recipe and I made her write it down for me - Because it is sooo GOOD.
1/2 cup Miracle Whip
1T good mustard - horseradish, yellow whatever you have thats good
1/4 c Tarragon Vinegar
1t celery seed
salt and pepper to taste.
sometimes I add in a little raw horseradish for some kick).
Mix it all together and mix into your cabbage or broccoli slaw.
I love it's sweet twanginess.
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
So last week I was in Miami for two back to back events for work. One was an internal business review and one was a VIP customer event. I was responsible for both. The customer event was my last event for the company I work for as a full time marketing coordinator has been hired. She's great and I'm very happy she's here. In some respects I'm sad but in others I am so very happy.
When I finally got home Friday night it was 1 am Saturday and I popped a muscle relaxer and crawled into bed with my wittle family. I'm not sure if they got up and came back to join me but I slept for 11 hours and woke up with the dogs. The hubs has left me sleeping. This is rare and I fully enjoyed and needed it.
Spent the weekend catching up on stuff and on Sunday night we finally celebrated our anniversary which was while I was in San Francisco. We had dinner at Mortons and the Grand Marnier Souffle was to die for good. Then we went to see Ira Glass at the Grove. It was one man show highlighting the NPR program This American Life. It was really good and nice change of pace.
Now on Monday - I spent alllll day in my sewing room catching up on things. I made the apron for my partner in the FAS Autumn Apron Swap, some matching pot holders and then I attempted the impossible. The mini quilt from the Homestead Hearth's Prairie Women's Sewing Circle. I actually did it and it looks pretty good for a beginner quilter. I'm almost excited for the next installment.
I also finished up the christmas quilt top - just need to make the sandwich, quilt and bind.
Now I'm struggling to head into the office ;)
Saturday, October 9, 2010
May need to ponder on this or a day or so before i start cutting out the apron pieces.
Otherwise they'd make an adorable small lap quilt :).
Sunday, September 26, 2010
When we bought our house, I bought a new (used) sewing machine. It's a Bernina Virtuoso 150 QE. It's been wonderful. As long as I use Gutermann thread. If I try to use Cloaks & Clark - well then it becomes a fiasco of thread everywhere. It's as if the tension is wrong when it's really right.
I've tested this theory out by sewing with Gutermann all purpose thread, then with Cloaks and Clark - on the same fabric, same tension...truly different results
I'm almost ready to toss all the Cloaks and Clark thread I own and replace it with Gutermann just so I don't have to have that mess on the back of my fabric and in machine...uber dusty.
Am I dreaming this up or has anyone else had this type of machine thread love triangle?
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