Sunday, April 29, 2012

Meet Millie

Well, it happened.  My Singer sewing machine pooped out.  The light will go on but no juice from the pedal.  Luckily I am sentimental and never got rid of my old machine.  Today I realized that her name is Millie :)
100_3038[1]I was having bobbin issues and put her back in the case like 9-10 years ago and bought my Singer.  I pulled her out yesterday to just see if, by chance, she would still work.  And, she does!  Hurrah!  I realized that back in the day I knew like nothing about tension and that was mostly the problem.  This machine powers through thick seams like butter!  See that little button over on the right on the base of the machine?  Well, the feed dogs drop when you push that so if I can find parts then I'm positive that I can quilt with her! 
Yesterday was such a beautiful warm day, like 60 degrees, and I realized I need more skirts.  I dug around in my vintage sheet stash and came up with a fun flat sheet that has a descending flower pattern which I thought would be perfect for the bottom edge of a skirt.  So, here's what I did:  fold each edge in toward the middle to creat two folds on either side.  I just made a simple elastic waisted skirt which I wanted a little longer than the pattern called for, so just pulled up the pattern piece a bit. 100_3025[1] An elastic waist skirts is absolutely the easiest skirt in the world to make! And, super comfortable! Here's the finished product: vintage sheet skirt Yesterday I also made a pair of pj shorts out of another sheet. Also super easy and comfy. After I felt pretty productive clothing-wise I worked on stars for the quilt. Today, just taking it easy a la George: 100_3033[1] This week I'm hoping our nice snap of weather sticks around so I can start riding my bike to work! I've also been going to Zumba after work on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday so I'm hoping to see some results on the scale!

Saturday, April 28, 2012

British invasion

I don't know if I've ever mentioned this, but I have a serious crush on England.  Everything about it, the accents, the spelling of words, just everything.  Course I've never been there, but still (!).  Today I received my package for the Wild Olive Stitch Swap, and it was from England!  Yikes.  Could I be more excited?  nope.  The stamp on the outside was even cool.
Wild olive stitch swap received It's from Elsie and I love,love, love it! Look at those tiny stitches on the lettering! And I had asked for something with toadstools, so it's perfect! And the ribbon. Oh man don't even get me started!  There was  a really nice letter enclosed explaining her inspiration.  The package even smelled nice.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

weekend update

Last weekend was the scrapbooking retreat.  It was a good time.  Very low key and pretty quiet.  I feel like I got a good amount of pages done, 15.  I've definitely done more before but I did finish all the picture I brought with me.  I only have a couple more events and I will be up to current!  Yikes!  I need to start taking pictures of things other than quilts so I can scrapbook!  Of course, I do have my childhood pictures I could get started on too. 
So, along with everyone else I'm sure, I've been admiring chevron quilting.  But, it looked kinda tricky and fussy and therefore not something that I would be willing to do.  But one of the blogs that I read regularly, Stitched in Color had a post about a bee that she's involved in and it had chevrons.  So, as I was reading the post it hit me that it looks like log cabin corners!  Uh-huh.  So, I started with a triangle and just started building from there.  I am going to make a pillowcase with it, so I took a piece of tissue paper and folded it in thirds, but kinda wonky thirds and that's my template of sorts.  I have another piece to make and then I will square it up.  Kinda fun, huh?
100_3017[1] Since I have finished the quilts I had in my stack, I am free to start a new one.  I had a couple of weeks to think about what I wanted to do.  I had no inspiration at first.  But then, I had washed all that new fabric that I've just gotten and it was in a stack.  I did not intentionally buy that fabric to go together.  But, there it was all together and it just look right!

But now, what pattern? This took me a few days. But then I remembered that I had seen a pattern awhile back that had caught my eye. Naturally I am too cheap, ahem, frugal, to actually buy it. So, I put myself to work researching. I have an older Fons and Porter magazine that has a practically identical pattern in it, so that started the foundation of the star within a star. A quick google search with the block name and I found a tute. Course, for the flying geese I am doing the no waste method, which I love. The best part for me is that the geese come out bigger than you actually need so you can trim them down perfectly.

100_3021[1] Here is my test version with vintage sheets.  I need to work on my seam allowances because they coming in just shy of 12.5 x 12.5.   Here is the first square of the quilt!  I love it!  Every large square is going to have that brown border star and then each middle will be either brown, orange, green or red. 
Yesterday I stopped in Joann's and came across this fat quarter.  Isn't it funny?  I have NO idea what I will do with it yet, but just knew I needed to have it! 
Yesterday I did a test run of riding my bike to work to see how long it would take.  Guess what?  8 minutes!  That is totally do-able.  Now I just need to figure out the lunch situation because those frozen meals upset my stomach.  And, I'm TOO much of a scrambler in the morning to actually make something.  Huh.
In other news, I started a new book last night, it's called The Preacher's Daughter by Beverly Lewis.  I was reorganizing my books and decided I should start reading some of the books on my shelf.  So far, it's pretty good.  I have not ever been disappointed by anything I've read by Beverly Lewis.
BTW, it's 81 degrees here today!  Love it.  I rode my bike to the library and it was fab.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Happy Birthday Mom!

Just a little post to wish my Mom a Happy, Happy Birthday!  I'm rubbish at getting cards out on time......even when I buy them weeks in advance (?) so this way I know I can say Happy Birthday on the actual day :)  Thanks for being a cool Mom!  I would not be who I am without you're support and love!  I hope this is the best year ever! 
Love you,
C ♥

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

waste not

Okay, this is a catch-up post.  I feel like I haven't posted in forever!  Not that anything particularly interesting has been going on.....So, it is starting to feel like Spring, finally!  A few of my daffodils bloomed today which made me happy, and my crocuses are blooming also.  Last week, though, this is what I woke up to one of the days:
Mind you, it all melted off by the afternoon, but it was a surprise to wake up to white. I took a picture because I thought it looked like someone dumped powdered sugar all over! And, here's a gratuitous dog shot, lol!
Last Saturday Jan and I drove over to Medford to shop for Mya's birthday. Mya is turning 11 and didn't really give Jan much to go on for what she wanted. She said she wanted a bunny. While over there we stopped into Craft Warehouse and their fabric was all 30% off! Yikes. So, I picked a bunch of stuff out and mostly got 1/2 yard cuts and some fat quarters. The fat quarters weren't on sale but they weren't in bolts.
It totally looks like I have something planned to do with these since they kind of go together, but - nope, no plans yet. I just really had to have that sheep fabric! Yikes. so cute. and the bees. Lovin bees lately :)
So, Sunday (Easter) I had totally planned on being a lazy bone-jones with the boys, buuuuut then felt like I should go to church. I'm glad I did. The service started an hour earlier than normal and I really appreciated being home by noon even after stopping at the store! So, we took a nap and then I felt like I should at least make something. 
I had this square leftover from the stars quilt and thought it might make a nice potholder.  I chopped it down a little and picked around in my stash and found the polka dots.  Luckily my Mom just sent it to me since it matches perfectly!  The binding took me a few.  I was going to go with some sort of contrasting bright color or something but then my eye landed on this teeny little stripe I had.  I quilted it with a loop de loop, which was sort of fun.  A little trickier free motion quilting with two layers of batting essentially, regular batting and then the thermo stuff.
This weekend I have the spring scrapbooking retreat so will be out till next week.  Jan isn't going this year!  You know, something er other about Mya's birthday party.... ;) I know all the ladies so there won't be a shortage of people to talk to, but you know, it's just not the same without your bestie.  Eh.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

a couple finishes

And so, I finished the granny squares quilt last Sunday!  Ya-hoo!
finished granny square quilt
I really like the way it turned out.  I decided to stipple the quilt instead of straight stitching around the squares and I'm glad I did.  It has a nice crinkly look to it.  Here's an up close of the quilting:
up close
And the backing is a super fun citrusy print. Connie said it reminded her of those big swirly lollipops.
back of granny squares quilt
And a gratuitous binding shot! Lol, it turn out how I thought it would at all. I was thinking that the stripes would be short, not long. But, after I had already started cutting the bias binding and realized it I also decided I was not going to start over! Besides it takes a lot more fabric to cut the binding the other way not on the bias....I think it fits the quilt anyways :)
stripey binding
Yesterday there was a scrapbooking get-together and I thought it would be brilliant to take my stars quilt and use the big table to pin baste the layers together. Um, not so much. I think it's much better to tape down the backing so it stays put. But, my knees don't hate me today so I guess it's a trade-off :) I finished my pompom wreath which I realized that I didn't take a picture of, sorry. Trust me though it turned out super cute! Here's what I'm working on today:
stars quilt
This is by far not my best quilting, but oh well.  I really just wanted to stitch around each squares.  I thought it would look fun to hand quilt.  But, I did like one point and realized that would kill my hands and I might just chop the whole thing up!  The walking foot was going to be a huge pain turning around each star so I decided to try my hand at straight stitching with the free motion foot.  Way, way easier....but sort of tricky in areas to get a straight line.  This is going to be my curl up on the couch quilt so I chose flannel for the backing.  Here's the back:
back of the stars quilt
I had one of the stars leftover from the front, the gray floral with the red center.  It just didn't play nicely with the other squares as much as I really wanted it to work.  Then, yesterday when I was putting the backing together I realized that I didn't want a big turquoise chunk, I felt like it didn't make sense.  So, I made the other two and called it good.  You can sort of see the quilting on the back, but not too clearly.  All I have left is the binding and then I can put it to use!
The boys hung out with me in the craft house.  They, like George, want to have the door open and watch the goings on in the back yard even though it's kind of too cold to have the door open!  But really, how stinkin cute is Joey???
So, yep the door stays open.