Monday, November 1, 2010

Beauty from Adversity

Recently I asked the Lord to change me. I wanted to grow. Grow closer to Him, and closer to my family. Grow in my life. Well, He's given me a way to grow if I so choose.

My Dad has been diagnosed with cancer. This has happened really in just the last few months. It really seemed to turn the whole world upside down.

Whenever I ask someone to pray for him I also ask them to pray for my Mom. My Mom is an amazing woman but usually it's her with the health problems and my Dad takes care of everything but now their roles have been reversed.

I wanted to make her something so I dug through my stash and came up with some 4" squares that I bought a long time ago. With them I made her a Mug Rug.


Mug rug for mom

It was very simple to put together. It's dimensions are 6.5" x 12.75". I appliqued some fussy cut pieces from 2 of the charm squares.


Mug rug heart stippling

After doing a quick stitch in the ditch around the center and messy stitching around the 2 "flowers" I decided to try out some free motion quilting. I free motioned a meandering heart pattern in the center. Then went around the outside with some large hearts.


Mug rug border detail

I do like how it turned out. I'll be sending it off to her tomorrow. I pray it brings a smile to her face whenever she uses it.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Blogger's Quilt Festival - Fall 2010

Amy's Creative Side - Blogger's Quilt Festival

I am very excited to be joining in on the Blogger's Quilt Festival hosted by Amy's Creative Side!

Thank you for coming to visit and learn more about my quilt. I hope you enjoy it!

It was very easy for me to choose the quilt I wanted to post about because it's the only quilt larger than a mini that I've finished! lol

It also happens to be the very first quilt I've ever made.

So here it is, Folks!

"The Baby Quilt"


Here's a little more about this quilt:

This quilt is special to me in a couple of ways besides it being the first quilt I've every made. It's the very first thing that I made when learning to sew.

You see I BADLY wanted to learn to sew but alas and alack I had no machine. So the Lord blessed me with a friend who bought me my first sewing machine! I was so thankful for her generosity (especially since the machine was a Bernina!!). She says it was more out of selfishness for herself in buying me my Bernina because she was going to teach me how to sew. She didn't want to worry about the hassle of figuring out a cheapy machine (which I would have bought if left to my own unknowing devices) while teaching me how to create with it.

The very first class I took was a beginner quilting class taught by my friend. For the class she chose a simple quilt pattern made from Charm Packs.

This quilt went with me on my journey in learning about my machine: threading it, bobbins, and seam allowances. And all the things that go along with creating something lovely: pressing, rotary cutters, and let's not forget the seam ripper! I enjoyed every minute and worked on it any chance I could get. Ahhh, memories!

The choice of fabric in my quilt was based on what charm packs were on sale at my local fabric store, Silly Babies by Moda. I thought they were perfect since the purpose of this quilt was to be something for my kids to snuggle under on Family Movie night. Which comes to the 2nd reason this quilt is special.

It's a quilt that will keep my kids warm and it will get a lot of love!

I like this picture of The Baby Quilt best because it's doing what it was made for, being snuggled under!!



Thank you for visiting! Now go see all the other gorgeous quilts that are being shown in the Blogger's Quilt Festival!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Tears and Triumphs (In One Project!)

It started like a dream turned into a nightmare but it all turned out ok in the end.

I wanted to make myself an Over the Shoulder Bag for our next family trip to Disneyland. I found the perfect tutorial on Noodlehead. I picked out some fabric from my stash and got to work early one Wednesday morning (we were going to Dland on Thursday). All was going well. I had to start and stop numerous times stretching this project out into an all day affair. It even went into the night and early the next morning!


Fold over top bag

I wanted a bag that would be sturdy so I decided (my first mistake) to line the interior and exterior fabrics with fusible fleece. It sure is sturdy! I didn't realize my mistake until I tried to attatch the straps with grommets as the pattern states. AFTER I cut holes in my strap AND my bag did I discover that grommets don't work on 4 layers of fabric on the seam and 2 layers of fusible fleece and a layer of heavyweight interfacing.


It was 3 AM and I was pounding so hard my grommet tool GOT STUCK!! I tugged and tugged but alas all that came loose was the strap through the hole in my bag. Now what was I supposed to do?! I had worked literally ALL DAY and NIGHT on this bag I didn't want to just toss it aside.

I cut the strap above the 2nd hole and re top stitched it. I then sewed (with much difficulty) the straps onto the bag, covering up the giant holes in the side. I learned why she used grommets to attatch her straps. Sewing them was very tricky.

After that was done and I was admiring my work I discovered that while in my zealous pounding I POUNDED A HOLE IN THE FRONT OF MY BAG! UGH! What else could go wrong!

I covered up the outside hole with some fabric I used Heat N Bond with and cut out a flower but it looked more like a splat. Didn't last long though at Dland. Need to recover it. Any suggestions?

The inside hole I left alone.


I did learn alot in making this bag. It was the first time I made a lining zipper pocket! Should have used a smaller zipper but it works!


On a quicker, happier (and definitely cuter due to the model!) note I quickly and successfully made a Sippy Cup Leash for the baby in between my bag making drama. It worked great! No more sippy cups on the filthy ground a million times a day! Or left behind while walking through crowds when it gets dropped from little hands. It worked great in the car seat too! Gonna make another so this one can stay in the car.

Sippy cup leash

Any sewing disasters happening in your world lately?

Sunday, October 24, 2010

My Life Verse

Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.

Isaiah 41:10

Have A Wonderful Sunday!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Quilting Bee

moodybluesbee

I joined a quilting bee. It's entitled the Moody Blues Bee because the quilt blocks we'll be making are all about blue! Which is awesome for me because I LOVE BLUE! I am joining in a little late but you can see what the rest of the group has already made by visiting the Moody Blues Bee Flickr Group.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

A giveaway!

Awesome giveaway going on over at Little Blue Bell!

Do you love scarves?

I sure do!! I didn't really have any to wear but I sure loved how they looked on other people! Especially my sister who is a fashion queen!

Don't you just love this scarf!! Hurry and buy it here before I give in and buy it myself!

In A Round Scarf

And how about this scarf?

Bunchy Scarf


So very cute!

I was able to make my own of each of these! I purchased two ePatterns from Meg of Brassy Apple. Each pattern, the Bunchy Scarves eBook and the Brassy Neck Scarves eBook, contain 10 scarves to make and they were only $6.95/pattern!

I immediately got to work and made myself one scarf from each eBook.


First was the In A Round Scarf.

Round scarf

I didn't even have to cut any fabric! I had a piece of knit that was already the right size (and the right color) for the job! It was super easy to make.

Next I decided I needed a Bunchy Scarf.


Bunchy scarf

Again, super easy to make! (Just don't let innocent looking babies pull on it right after making it. It will break the thread and you'll have to resew it just minutes after finishing it.)

Innocent Looking Baby

Untitled

The next scarf I would like to make is the Shredded In A Round from the Brassy Neck Scarves ePattern. Sorry I couldn't find a pic to share of it but trust me, it's very cute! (But not as cute as that innocent baby!)

I've gotten compliments each time I've worn one of these scarves out of the house. Yes, I wear them at home when no one will see me but the kids because I like to be as my 7 year old would say, "Ooh! So fashion, Mama!"

These are definitely going on my To Make list for Christmas gifts!

Just wanted to say Thank You to Meg for letting me use her photos in my blog post!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Go! Baby Go!

Ok, corny title I know but how else could I share with you that I WON AN ACCUQUILT GO!

WOOHOO! *kermit arms*


celebrate

I owe it all to Fabrics N Quilts! They were hosting the giveaway on their blog and it was sponsored by Accuquilt.

It seemed like forever but finally my Go! arrived.


I was so excited! Even though I was in the midst of preparing for dinner guests I tore open the box to show it off to my husband. lol

On a sad note I haven't been able to play with it yet. =( On inspection I discovered that the handle was flush with the cutter and was leaving marks when rotated. I called Accuquilt and they are sending out a replacement handle with instructions on how to replace it. It should be here in a couple of days.

I guess I'll have to start saving up to buy some more dies to go with my new toy!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Candle Mat Swap

Candle Mat Swap


I joined my first swap and I'm excited about it! The Quilting Gallery is hosting this swap and we are all making a candle mat from the same pattern just using different fabrics according to our partner's wishes.

My partner wasn't very specific just that she wanted to be able to keep it out all the time so I decided on a Fandango Charm Pack.


My fabric for the candle mat swap

I found this lovely on sale at Hip Fabric. I loved how they sell Fat Quarters as well! You can choose to buy just a Fat Quarter from the fabrics that they carry! This worked out PERFECTLY for me since I needed a Fat Quarter for the Candle Mat.

I was finally able to start on mine today. After a lot of changing around charms to decide on their placement I started cutting and sewing. Here's my progress so far:

What I've got so far sneak peek

(Oh, you're wondering what that corner of a box possibly could be in the photo? Well, you'll just have to wait 'til tomorrow to find out!)

As you can see my top is almost done. After I got all those little pieces sewn together did the idea hit me, "Wouldn't those look so cute as wonky strips!" I really want to make this over again so I can make them wonky. Oh well, I may have enough to make another. =)

There are some really cute Candle Mats popping up on the Candle Mat Swaps Flickr Group. Stop by and take a look!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

What Do You Do With Your Quilt Tops? and A Vote!

Well, what do you do with those quilt tops that are finished but you just haven't gotten around to quilting yet? Are they folded up neatly on a shelf in your sewing room? Are they up on your design wall? Or are they in some dark corner?

The answer for mine is none of the above.

I make my quilts so that I can have pretty things around my house so when I finish one of my quilt tops I just can't wait to have it quilted to display it.
Here's my most recent quilt. It's actually not finished yet I just need to applique F-A-L-L on it

Qt

This is the last quilt top I finished. It will eventually be a wall quilt but until it's quilted it adorns my entryway table.
Qt
This was the second quilt top I ever made it actually still needs sashing and borders.
Qt
So if you're tired of not being able to enjoy your hard work place some quilt tops in different locations throughout your house! Enjoy them! Oh and get them quilted please! =)
*SHAMELESS PLUG
PS: I am part of the Flickr Friday Vote at Above All Fabric! Please go vote for my voile top! Kay? Thanks!


Simplicity 3842 with Little Folks voile

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Fall Quilting

Fall has started and even though the weather doesn't relay that fact I wanted to get out my Fall decorations this year! After digging through our storage closet I found that the dog had eaten most of my decorations. I put out what I had and decided I needed to get to work on making something more. A Fall Wall Hanging!

Earlier this Summer I won an "Awesome" Charm Pack and I knew that I wanted to make something for the house with it. So I pulled it out and started planning. I came up with this layout:

Fall wall hanging

Once I knew the direction I was going I started piecing. I wanted something fun so I made some wonky blocks. Pretty much just made a 4 patch then wonky cut them and sewed them back together.

Fall wall hanging block

I really wanted the middle seam to line up so I pulled out my seam ripper quite a bit for these blocks.

Fall wall hanging wonkiness

They turned out really well! I trimmed them down to 8 1/4" squares then sewed them together. I wanted to add a sashing to this quilt so I dug around in my stash and came up with some pieces of a very deep and rich purple that goes perfectly with some of the purple accents in the charm pack. After sitting for over an hour trying to calculate how wide my sash strips needed to be I decided to just make them 1 1/2" wide (finished).

I just want to say in advance that I'm sorry. I'm sorry that the quality of this upcoming picture does not do justice to the beautiful colors on this quilt top.

Fall wall hanging

I just could not get a good picture of this. The purple is so rich and pretty that it frames the light wonky blocks perfectly! I'm almost tempted to leave it as is!!

All that's left for this quilt top to be finished are the border squares and to applique F-A-L-L on the front.

Are you making anything for the Fall season?

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Swapping and Skirts

Candle Mat Swap

I'm joining in on a Candle Mat Swap with the Quilting Gallery! I know, I know, it's not like I don't have enough projects to keep me busy but I've really been wanting to get involved in a swap. I'm very excited about it 'cause this will be my first one! The candle mat/mini quilt looks very simple to make, we will all be using the same pattern just different fabrics according to our partners wishes.

On another note I got a custom order for a Fun and Comfy Skirt! I'm first making a muslin to make sure it's what the customer would like. She wants something for excercising that will stay modest so I'm making it with sewn in leggings that will be an inch or so shorter than the length of the skirt.

Fun and comfy skirt

Yes and make sure to avert your eyes to all that surrounds the dress form! ;)

And BTW the Mom loved the ties for her little guy!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Finally Finished Friday!

Welcome to the second installment of FINALLY FINISHED FRIDAY!! =)

I finally finished off more listings for the shop. I've had these cut out for quite some time just hadn't sewn them together until this week.

First off is the Posh Pillowcase! I love it! It's so pretty! I think 2 of my kids loved it too. When I tried getting a photo of it the baby kept following me around ready to lay down on it whenever he had the chance! lol It has definitely been comfort tested and baby approved. Then while taking the photos my oldest daughter asked, "Does everyone in the world have a pillowcase?". "Why?", I asked. "Well I need a new pillowcase.", she said, as in *hint hint* give this one to me Mom! lol Unbeknownst to her though a Personalized Posh Pillowcase will be under the tree this Christmas.


I also got 3 more Crayon Wallets made for the shop. Actually 2 more because one was giving me such a hard time I decided to keep it and use it for a reward for my oldest (since she's been wanting one of these too) when school starts.


Ok I know this isn't technically 'finished' yet but they'll be done on Friday since I'm writing this post on Thursday night. These are 4 Little Guy Ties that I'll be giving as a bday gift this Saturday for a friends baby who's turning 1. Now for those that are thinking "ties as a birthday present?!" They were Mom requested. She just doesn't know the colors. I asked her what colors she likes on her son and she mentioned green and orange. I thought the black would be a good neutral and since Christmas is coming soon I had to make a red one!

Unfinished ties

And last but definitely not least is the one I'm most excited about! I finally made myself some labels! I love, love, love how they look! They were so easy to make. Just some cotton twill tape and iron on transfer paper. I was very happy that my printer decided to print in color (it has been giving me fits lately) because I LOVE blue. =) Now if only I could remember to add my labels to my product while I'm making them!


Well, that's about it for this Finally Finished Friday. I'm trying to slowly fill up the shop, now if only someone(s) would start emptying it! lol On my to do list is getting business cards made. I met 2 ladies tonight that were very interested but all I had to give them was scrap paper with my name and web address scribbled out. Nice. =/

Anything you've finally finished?

Friday, September 10, 2010

Finally Finished Friday

Today on our agenda was prepping the baby's room for painting but inbetween scraping and sanding I was able to sneak in a little sewing time! With a million things on my 'to sew' list I wanted to get something done for my mini quilt wall in the living room. There aren't any mini quilts on it yet that's why I'm so anxious to get something made for it.

Here was my inspiration to start a quilt wall in my living room.

Wall inspiration


I chose the 1800's Vintage Doll Quilt on the Moda Bake Shop Website because all it called for was one charm pack and some ivory fabric for the sashing(?). I already had an American Primer charm pack that I got 1/2 off at my local fabric shop a long while ago and a bunch of ivory fabric on my shelf. I started on this quilt earlier in the week.

This was very fun and simple to put together! However the instructions are a tad bit off. You need 18 dark light dark strips to make 70 subcuts and 13 light dark light strips for 49 subcuts. Once you're done putting the whole thing together it looks like it was a lot of work piecing all those tiny little squares but following their instructions with chain piecing makes it so easy.

1800 vintage quilt


After finishing all of my 9 patches I was ready to pull out my seam ripper to fix some of the patches that weren't lined up correctly. Then I remembered something I read on A Few Scraps "Done is better than perfect." So I said goodbye to my seam ripper and kept on going! (Actually I had to pull out my seam ripper once or twice for more extreme mistakes such as sewing the wrong blocks together).

I pieced the whole top together this evening and with it pressed it looks so lovely! All that's left is to quilt it and bind it. I would really like to quilt this myself and I'm thinking a stippling pattern would be good for this one. I'm gonna have to practice my stippling a bit more though before I attempt it on this one. My stipples aren't smooth at all they look "unnatural". lol If you have an idea for a quilting design for this quilt I'm all ears (or should I say 'eyes' since we're online?).

1800's vintage quilt


I already know where this will be hung in the living room but right now it's decorating my entry way table. Now I've got 2 quilt tops decorating my house. lol I need to get them both quilted quickly or quickly quilted. (Ok it's getting late lol)

I hope to start having regular "Finally Finished Friday" posts. We'll see how that goes though. =) I'll have to pull out all the stops for next Friday since we'll be gone (again) at the beginning of the week. This is the last trip until December. It'll be nice to be home for awhile.

Have a great weekend, Everyone!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Patchwork Cards and Quilting

I made some cards the other day using this tutorial from Pioneer Valley Girl.

They were very simple to make and they are great for gifts!

More patchwork cards


I also worked on the 1800's Vintage Quilt from the Moda Bake Shop. I'm using an American Primer Charm pack and you don't even need to cut every charm square. I might make some new potholders for my kitchen with the leftover charms and pieces.

1800's vintage doll quilt


I'm starting to think about Christmas gifts for the kids and since they definitely don't need anymore toys or clothing I'm going outside the norm. This year on the gift lists are personalized bath towels, Pretty pillowcases and pillows, and whatever else I can think of to make. lol I need to get started since I've got 4 of them to sew for! Trying to think of what to get my husband for Christmas as well. It's always so hard to shop for him. Any ideas?

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Free Motion Quilting

I finished my extremely ugly quilt top for the Free Motion Quilt Along at A Few Scraps. After I finished it and posted a picture in the flickr group I realized I put it together wrong! lol Oh well, since it's for learning how to free motion quilt I didn't even attempt to pull out my seam ripper.

one ugly quilt top complete

I also put together a couple of 12"x18" practice quilt sandwiches and did my first attempt at free motion quilting.

practice stitching

I'll mostly be working on quilts and stuff for the shop this month. The kids have been completely outfitted with lots of new clothes from grandparents that there's no need for me to make them anything. =(

What do you have in store to make for this month?

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Patterns :: Designer :: Amy Butler :: Sandlewood Jacket - Welcome to Above All Fabric

I definitely need to get this Sandalwood Jacket by Amy Butler pattern for my next "for me" project! The weather here is never extreme so it would be a great jacket I could wear!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Simplicity 3842 with Upgrades!

Remember this pattern:
And this fabric:

I combined them to make this top!

Ok, so I wasn't able to use the Diamond Mine fabric but I've got enough of it to make myself a purse to go with this outfit!! WOOHOO! lol That'll be in 2 weeks though.

This was a very easy pattern to follow and make. I did have to make a couple of "upgrades" though. lol The first change was a major one; the sleeves. I mean look at that pattern picture, they look like sausages or something! I envisioned for my top beautiful, flowy sleeves. It took me the better part of an hour learning how to make the changes necessary to the pattern to remove the gathers and change the shape. But they do look lovely! The second change was just not making the inset for the front. Since I had to wear a camisole for this top anyway I thought I might as well skip it.

One change I wish I would have made is the tunic bottom. I should have made it 1 size larger to give me slightly more ease. Other than that the top is perfect!

I decided to add this lace trim to the front after finding it in a large bag of notions I scored from a garage sale. I think it really finishes off the front of the tunic.

Here is a pic of the inside looking oh so lovely with french seams and all! Since this top was unlined I decided it needed a nice inside finish. It was my first time doing them and it does take longer with the extra step but it is so worth it!

You also get a peek at the bias binding that finished off the V neck. I didn't realize I needed it (I should have read the pattern thoroughly) but was lucky to also find this in my big bag of notions.

Working with this fabric was a dream! If you haven't tried sewing with Anna Maria Horner's Voile line I highly recommend you do so especially if you like to make yourself lovely clothes! It was so soft but not slippery. Very easy to sew with.

This top is going to be perfect for my trip to the hot and humid midwest next week.