Friday, February 29, 2008

Amy Butler Inspired Bag

So I did actually sit down today and make a bag for the Amy Butler/Craftzine contest. It's the same pattern as the bag from yesterday, except the handles are different. I'm not sure which version I like better yet, but I don't think I've found a handle that I truly like yet. My friend Stephanie and I were talking about this contest last week. Have you seen her beautiful bag? I think she's a sure winner!
At first I wasn't sure that I was going to participate, but I got some last minute inspiration. The thought of winning a $2000 sewing machine certainly helped too. I'm sure that I won't win as there are many other great bags out there, but it's worth a shot. I can't win anything if I don't enter, right? Perhaps I'd have a better shot if I could take pictures at night!! I can't wait for those long days of sun! Anyway, I hope you all have a great weekend!

Thursday, February 28, 2008

From Sketch to Bag

Usually when I get new fabric, it sits around for a while before I can bring myself to cut it. But yesterday, after I received all that beautiful Ginger Blossom, I was so inspired and itching to use them right away. I even risked some on a new design that I sketched last night. I had originally intended to use some leather at the top, but I didn't have any of the right color to use. Although this pattern needs a little tweaking, I'm pretty happy with the way it came out. I think it could use a good ironing too. And perhaps a little more care sewing the curves. It's amazing what you start noticing after you take pictures!!
If I can get my act together tonight, I may try to get one finished in Amy Butler fabric for the craftzine contest. We'll see about that.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Oh Happy Day!

It's a good day when your mailman shows up at your door with a box stuffed with this

Don't judge me because I just want to take a nap on it. Now, stop drooling and go buy yourself some. Go ahead, be bad, I won't tell your husbands.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

You Know You Have a Problem when...

The back of your couch looks like this...and you got a library card just to check out these books...and your cutting table (for sewing) now has this project on it....And mind you I have a show that I have nothing done for in a month. I'm glad I'm not the only one with Craft ADD.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Finished Blocks

After knitting all week, I finally took my sewing machine out from hiding. I had shoved it (literally) under a table a few minutes before guests arrived last week for Isaiah's birthday party. I hadn't missed it much, until I realized that I made a permanent dent in our couch while knitting, and it was then I decided it was time to sew again. This afternoon I finished up the last of the blocks for the quilt-along. Now is the hard part deciding how to put it together. Amanda's way looks very nice, but I'm not sure I want to cut up so many squares! I think I'll ponder it for a few days before I do anything else. There are some nice layouts in the flickr group, but it still is so hard to decide. I may just cave in and do it Amanda's way, but we'll see. Sometimes it hard being such an indecisive person!

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Oh, Hello There!

Wow! I've been away for so long. John told me that my blog was getting boring, and I needed to update. I couldn't agree more. It's always so hard to get back into blogging from a break because there's so much to say, and no quite the right way to say it.

I had a lovely trip in Florida. It was beautiful, sunny and warm everyday. We had lots of fun activities, including a new haircut for momma. I tell you, I feel like a brand new woman. The end of our vacation was a little stressful. Isaiah contracted croup two days before we were leaving and on his 2nd birthday nonetheless. So we had a night of no sleep, a visit to a new doctor in Florida, a shot, several medications, and a very tired (and sick) child and momma. We had an early flight on Friday morning and luckily we were both able to get a little sleep the night before. By the time we arrived home, I felt like I had run a marathon. Thankfully Isaiah had slept the entire plan ride and car ride home. I think I'm still catching up, but Isaiah is almost back to 100% (thank goodness).

Saturday morning, I met a blog friend for our first knitting class together. Stephanie and I had first met when she came to my craft fair. I thoroughly enjoyed hanging out and learning a new craft with her. What I am less excited about it having a new addiction. I've been knitting all week, practicing for our next class. I started out with a simple scarf (up at the top), but I need another ball of yarn. Since I've been admiring many fetching patterns out there in blog land, I decided that I needed to try it out for myself. Since I've never used double pointed needles, or done cables before, this is quite a challenge for me. I started the first one last night and finished it this afternoon. It is far from perfect, but I think it's pretty good for my first finished knitting project!
I may get started on the other one tonight. Or I may not. I'm starting to miss my sewing machine ;)

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Some Very Good Mail

Yesterday I was surprised when I received not one, but THREE packages in the mail yesterday. I was anticipating the package from my Hanging Hearts Swap partner, Chris, as she told me she mailed it on Monday, but the other two were surprises!

Chris definitely spoiled me. She made this gorgeous pom pom garland that made me giggle with joy as soon as I saw it. I had wanted something like that for my Christmas tree, and this just may become a year round decoration. She also made this cute embroidered heart and very sweet heart napkins. Thank you so much Chris!! I love everything.The second package was from Mirre. I had won a giveaway on her blog last summer, and had totally forgotten about it. She sent these goodies, which are going to accompany me on my trip to Florida tomorrow. And yes, Mirre, you can blame the pregnancy for being late!! I know pregnancy makes us lose our minds. But don't worry, you package was worth the wait!And lastly, I had signed up for a PIF on Raesha's blog a few months back. She made this gorgeous doll quilt for my wall. Isn't it lovely? I just adore the colors and the quilting. It'll probably hang next to the one she made me when we were swap partners. Thanks Raesha!! Perhaps now this will give me incentive to make my PIFs!I leave tomorrow morning at 6:45 am for Florida. That is insanely early, and I'm hoping Isaiah behaves himself, because I know I won't be in any condition to deal with a toddler that early. Thankfully I'm going with my MIL who will assist with the child wrangler duties. Have a great week everyone!

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Does this Potholder Come in other colors?

This is a quote relating to this doll quilt/wall hanging that I had made for my craft fair back in November. I had all but forgotten about this quilt, when I found it in a Rubbermaid bin this weekend. The moment I saw it, I started laughing at the memory of this poor guy, who upon checking out my table several times, finally came back and asked me, "ma'am, does this potholder come in other colors?" Of course, (because I'm not one to be able to keep it together in such circumstances) I laughed and tried to explain that it was a doll quilt rather than a potholder. He looked at me quizzically, probably thinking I was both nuts and rude, said "oh", and walked away. I swear, every time I think about it I just laugh.

The small pattern in the middle is directly from the free quilt pattern for the Katie Jump Rope line. I would love to make this a full sized quilt, but in reality, it might be too much of a challenge for me. This one is pretty small, I don't know the exact measurements (because I'm too lazy to actually measure it), but it's about 8" x 10". I was thinking of listing it on etsy, but I think that I does look mighty nice on that brown wall!

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

More Quilt Blocks

Wow! Thanks for all your lovely comments yesterday about my quilt. I really do love it and it has really made me want to quilt more. Not to mention wanting to buy a new sewing machine with which I can drop the feed dogs! That'll have to wait though. I've got to save some mula for that.

Well I have been busy the last week trying to catch up on the quilt a long. I've been averaging about two a night. As it stands now, I only have 3 more blocks to finish and they are already cut out. I slacked for a while on this project, but once I got going, I couldn't wait to start the next block. These are blocks 6,7,8, and 10. Somehow I skipped 9, so I'm going back and doing that one now. I think the yellow one is my favorite so far. I just love that thrifted fabric!

I've also listed a few new things on etsy. I have been doing a lot of sewing in the last week. I think I'm trying to prepare myself for a week without a sewing machine!

Monday, February 04, 2008

Birthday Quilt Finished!

The birthday quilt is finally finished. I had put it aside for a while since the last time I showed a sneak peek. I had fully intended to finish it that weekend, but I was getting frustrated with my inability to decide how to quilt it. I think that is the most difficult part, for me at least, because in a way I think it "makes" the quilt. So I settled on something easy, some straight lines and some squares, all along loving my new walking foot which has made a huge difference!

Anyway, more about the quilt. I used the Happy Things tutorial here. It's a really great process and it comes together pretty quickly. I love the randomness and it really reduced my desire to over think the whole design process.

I had originally intended for this quilt to be a Christmas present for Isaiah. A few days before Christmas, John gave me a free day to sew and finish up Christmas gifts. I had almost finished everything when I realized I had but one thing for Isaiah made. So, I started sewing strips like a mad woman, convinced that I'd be able to finish the quilt in two days, among all the other holiday obligations. After Mass on Christmas eve, followed by family dinner, we arrived home around 11pm and I started sewing again, determined to get the blanket under the tree for Isaiah in the morning. Finally, I asked John if I should admit defeat, and he lovingly hugged me and told me Isaiah wouldn't even know that I hadn't made him enough (but I knew). I reluctantly put it away, and it had been sitting for a while before I got the urge to finish it up.

Then, after I realized I'd be going to Florida for a week(yay) and coming back one day before Isaiah's birthday party, I decided to finish up the quilt. And boy am I glad I did. I love the way it came out, it's so warm and cuddly, and if it were just a tiny bit bigger, I'd be tempted to keep it for myself. But, it'll be a special present for a very sweet, loving two year old boy (2 years, how did that happen??).

Yesterday I was finishing up the binding while watching the Superbowl. I had a needle in my mouth and scissors in my hand. Just a few minute before, John had said, should you be watching this with sharp objects in your hand?!?! Then the Giants scored and I almost swallowed the needle because I was so excited! Just goes to show that sometimes multitasking just isn't a good idea!

There are more pictures on flickr. Did you ever notice how hard it is to take a picture of a quilt? Kudos to those that can take good pictures!