Wednesday, March 28, 2012

WIP Wednesday..

Something about that new stack of fabric with the prospect of making some new exciting things really gave me the kick in the pants I needed to get some progress made on some other stuff, 'cause these last few days I've been a bit sew crazy, trying to get as much done as possible in the little time I have to work on it...

First up, I started and finished my blocks for this month's do.Good Stitches. This month was led by Jess @ SewCraftyJess, and she chose the Japanese x and + blocks.  I was a bit scared of these at first, but once I looked at the tutorial and started them, they were so stinkin easy!! I can see why these have been really popular...

March do.Good Stitches Block 1

March do. Good Stitches Block 2

We had free reign on color, and she said "the more vibrant, the better"...but I think I got a little TOO vibrant on my first one?  I don't know, I'm not really big on scrapiness, so it bothered me not to have any kind of started to grow on me a bit after a while, but I did decide to tone down my second one just a tad. 

Next up is some progress on my Curves projects! I finally got my pot holders and Rainbow Road runner quilted, and I'm just waiting for some more time to bind them.  I also tried out two of the other projects, both of which have been epic failures! One is fixable, I just got super frustrated and didn't want to look at it anymore, the other I totally scrapped...good thing I was using scraps for that one so no tears shed on lost fabric...apparently advanced improv curves are not my friend!

DP Pot Holder 1  DP Pot Holder 2  DP Pot holder backings...

Rainbow Road quilted  Close up of Rainbow Road
Rainbow Road backing

FINALLY I got to start on my Retro Flowers quilt! I happened to win a set of templates from the lovely Jill @ Made On Mainstreet and they came in today so as soon as I opened the package I ran back to my sewing room and got to cutting!  It was suggested to me that Lou Lou Thi might not have been the best choice to use for this due to the larger prints as they will get a little lost which unfortunately I did not even think about when choosing this, but I decided to try out my first block with one of the larger prints to see how it works...I had to fussy cut alot which stinks, but I think it will work.

Retro flower petals

I've got some big plans to get started on, but this weekend is my birthday and my parents are coming to town so I will probably not get much done for a few days, BUT I am super excited about what I've got planned!!

Anything exciting going on in your neck of the woods?? I'm linking up with WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced!

Saturday, March 24, 2012

It's A....

We found out Friday, so today I headed out to the fabric stores to try to find some inspiration for the nursery...little did I know I'd come home with about 23 yards worth!! Yikes...Totally did not intend on actually purchasing all this today...but when fabric speaks to you, you cannot ignore it!

Mountain of Fabric!
Mountain of fabric!!

These are the prints I picked out for the nursery...I had not planned on so much Kate Spain, but I started out with that print on top (which I've forgotten what it is and it's in the wash right now, so I'll have to get back to you on that...) then found the Kate Spain that matched perfectly!

Baby blanket!
I found this owl print and picked out some others to go with it to make a simple quilt.  My LQS is closing down (pause for a moment of silence) and every thing is between $5-$7 a yard so I couldn't resist stocking up on all of this...

Fabric for diaper bag?
These I plan to use for a diaper bag.  

Fun FQs
And these are just for fun, because who can resist a good fat quarter??

So the bad news is that my LQS is closing, the good news is I found a new store in town called Chickadee Shop that has some super nice stuff (mostly Moda...).  I went there once a few months ago right after they opened and was not too impressed but decided to give it another shot today now that they've been opened for a while and (obviously) found some really nice stuff.  PLUS they are soon to be a Bernina dealer...not that I can afford a Bernina, but at least I can go stare at them :) They are a bit pricier than I'd like, so I won't be shopping there too often, but at least it's a place in town I can go for some good modern fabrics!

Well, I'm going to go sit by the washing machine to wait for my fabrics to be done so I can start playing!! Hope you're all having a nice weekend!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Gifting Handmade

This time of year is a time known to me and my friends as "birthday season".  Beginning Feb 11, I have someone close to me with a birthday every week (sometimes 2 a week...) all the way up until we end with my birthday on April 1st.  It gets kind of crazy trying to keep up with all of them and trying to get cards/gifts to everyone on time, but this year I'm proud to say I'm doing pretty good having only been late on one so far. Woot! Go me! As I mentioned before, I was working on completing a purse for one of my friends to give to her for her birthday. I did get it finished, but as I suspected it was not quite on time, but only a week late which is pretty good for me to be honest, lol.

Sunday Sling

Sunday Sling Reverse

Sunday Sling Reverse 2

This pattern is the Reversible Sunday Sling by Amy Butler.  It went together really well and if I hadn't gotten so busy with some other stuff going on, I definitely could have finished it in just a few days.  I love this pattern and might just have to make one for myself one day also!

I hadn't intended on making something for my bestie, as I made her a purse for Christmas, but the only idea she gave me for what she wanted for her birthday was "make-up brushes". Well, I have no idea what brushes she uses so I will just get her a gift card to Sephora so she can pick them out, but I decided to whip up a quick make-up brush roll to go along with that. 

Make Up Roll

Make Up Roll inside

Make Up Roll Outside

I loosely followed this tutorial which was super easy, but I made a few changes including the pocket size, adding binding, and quilting it.  The quilting was just some quick wavy lines which I had not done before but I'm thinking of using it on a larger project, so perfect chance to try it out!  This took me all of 3 hours to do, start to finish, and if I hadn't done the quilting and binding, I'm betting it would have only taken about an hour. All in all, a quick, fun little gift..I will definitely be remembering this and possibly even making a few to stash away for future use. 

I also got some hand made stuff from my other bestie, including this lemon-sugar hand scrub she made.

Hand Scrub

Check out the totally cute way she finished off the jar! This smells delightful, and um..I kinda want to eat it...

She also gave me this pottery that was made by one of her friends.


Pottery 2

I love the detailing on this mug!  Her friend that made this has an etsy shop if you're interested, not much is in there right now but she is quite talented! 

The best gift of all has been that I got to spend an afternoon with both of my two best friends.  The three of us live in separate towns now and it's hard to get all of us together at the same time, but we were able to make a quick trip this past weekend to get together for a bit.  It was really short, but really great to be able to spend some time together :-)

Linking up with "This Week @ Love Affair with my Brother"!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Welcome Spring

Ah yes, the first day of Spring...Or as I like to call it here in Florida, the beginning of Summer.  Spring actually sprung here a few weeks ago, but today's weather is especially beautiful and has made me feel so refreshed!  It's sunny, there's a nice breeze and it's not too humid yet...perfect! One of my favorite things to do this time of year is to walk around the yard looking at everything coming back to life....

Love watching the bees go to work...

Come May, we will have pounds and pounds of delicious Blueberries!

Hot peppers...My hubby loves them and grows about 6 or 7 different varieties.  I myself do not eat them, but it is fun to watch them grow, and we might try to make some different stuff with them this year

Peaches!! We usually have hundreds of them come harvest time, but due to the early spring the tree bloomed in late January, then we unfortunately had one last hard freeze which killed off all the buds. Thankfully, one of the branches seems to have been shielded well enough and we have a good handful still growing. 

Harley LOVES this weather, and likes to hang out here in his sand pit watching people go by and smelling the breeze....

I wish I had thought to take some photos last week when the Azaleas were in bloom.  Almost every house on my street has some in their yard, and when they all bloom at the same time it's absolutely gorgeous, but they only last a week or so.  Usually this time of year I'm also watching the garden grow, but due to my hubby traveling a lot lately (and the fact that I'll be about 7 or 8 months pregnant come harvest time and probably not wanting to be outside AT ALL) we did not do one this year, but will hopefully get a few potted veggies going soon. 

Hope you all are having a beautiful first day of spring as well! I'm off to enjoy more of this weather outside...gotta get it all in now as I'm sure it will be short lived and will soon be 95 degrees, ugh...

Saturday, March 10, 2012

New Look

I finally made my own banner! Ellison Lane Quilts posted a tutorial of how to make a button using a new photo editor-PicMonkey (since Piknik will no longer be with us come April...) I've never tried making one before but she made it look so easy so I gave it a try, but altered the sizes to make a banner (in case you're curious and wanting to do this also, I resized mine to 1000x360, I went back and resized it a few times as I was adding it to my blog until I found the fit I wanted). It was really fast and fun, and my blog feels so much more official now! I found PicMonkey to be very easy to use, but it is still pretty basic.  Their main page says "Collage and More Coming Soon" though, so I'm hopeful! It is totally free, and you don't even have to register to use it which is a plus to me since I'm always forgetting my user names/passwords.  I'll definitely be playing around with it some more, which means you'll probably be seeing my blog change quite frequently as I find more fun things to do :)

What do you think of the orange-y feel now? I'm not sure I'm sold on this color scheme yet, but it's growing on me.  Any other programs out there that you use to make banners/buttons?

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Modern Mini-Good Morning Sunshine

Yep, that's right friends...I got it done in time! Woot! I'm quite proud of this little guy, it is the first time I've come up with a design and figured out how to piece it all on my own (other than the sun block...). I'm calling it "Good Morning Sunshine!" which was very fitting, because today was the first day we've had nice sunshine all week, so I was able to get some pictures of it outside.

Good Morning Sunshine!

This originally started out as a little mug rug, but trying to piece those itty-bity-teeny-tiny-pieces and trying to get them to line up was just not, it got enlarged to a mini/wall hanging quilt, finishing at 14"x10". For the quilting, I followed the lines from each side and the middle of the rays, I like the simple effect it has over all.  For the fabrics, I used Kona Peacock, Butter Cup, School Bus, and Ruby for the sun and stripes (along with solid white..) and then Kona Charcoal for the binding.

Close up of sun

I did use a paper-piecing pattern for the sun part, it is a part of a New York Beauty block.  I got the pattern from here, but the directions were in German so I followed this tutorial.  And thanks to my new skills at sewing curves, this was a cinch! 


The backing I used some scraps from the front.  Actually, I cannot tell a lie...the blue got switched to Kona Turquoise as I ran out of Peacock...but who's keeping track?? I used the zig-zag binding tutorial as usual (one of these days I'll work up the courage to try a different method again...), the binding on the back is obviously a little thicker than on the front so I missed the edges of it, but oh well, ya live ya learn. The good news is, it only took me *3* tries this time to get the ends attached properly!  Success! 

Good Morning Sunshine in it's new home!

Here she is in her new home above my sewing machine.  I like that it adds a nice little bit of light to the area, though it's a little small for that spot so it may wind up finding a new home eventually, but for now it is perfect! 

I am entering this into Ellison Lane's Modern Mini Challenge, there are some amazing entries to far, so be sure to stop by and check them out! Also, I am linking up with {Sew} Modern Monday at Canoe Ridge Creations.

Modern Mini Challenge