Friday, November 30, 2012

Early Shopping Will Set You Free

I have been so productive this past week. Once again not having the shopping hanging over my head is the reason, I am convinced! These blocks are from the pattern Stars and Sprigs by Kim McClean.

Every night after dinner, I have been sitting down with my applique. You can almost get a block a night complete.

The blocks are small, only 10 inches. The fabric possibilities are endless and a little daunting, too many choices.

As my Diary Block Quilt is winding down I am trying to decide what to make for the last 2 blocks. Any ideas?.....I am drawing a blank, especially figuring out the last block. What to put on it, should my name be there? Any suggestions are appreciated!


Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Miscellaneous Wednesday

Most of the sewing that is getting done revolves around Christmas presents so no pictures for a few weeks.
I did find this awesome vintage tablecloth and decided I wanted to turn it into a tree skirt.

This picture shows you a better idea of the color and the pattern, it is a deep turkey red.

It has this cool trim along the edge. I think some one washed it and the trim shrunk and the fabric didn't...

I cut a hole in the center and finished the edge with some ric rac. This shows you a better idea of the color.

Maddy's Christmas charm bracelet. The charms are huge on her little wrist.

My daughter in law Mary gave me an early birthday present. She knows I like to make pies.

Even the pages have a retro feel to them.

This page cracked us up! Is his arm up to signal "another piece of pie, woman"!!???

Have you ever heard of 7-Up pie crust? I think I might just have to try it...

I have just started a new book called The Kitchen House. It is very good if you like historical fiction. I am already about 1/3 of the way through the book. Has anyone else read this?


Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Diary Block Tuesday

Surprise it's a turkey! I kind of went with the easy and no thinking block this week. Blue and green feathers add to the fantasy.

Every once in a while the stitching comes out good!

The legs disappeared into the body so a little outline to the rescue!

The eyes are a little scary looking, he looks possessed!

My posts have been a little scarce with Thanksgiving and the business of getting ready for Christmas.
I have been making some presents too so there is nothing I can show yet.
I am happy to say all of my Christmas shopping is done!!!HOORAY! and I think this will be a relaxing holiday for the first time in a long time.


Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Diary Block Tuesday

Today's block is a little sad for me. My dad died 15 years ago today. I can't believe he has been gone that long. The colors are a little subtle ( like him) and autumnal because he loved Thanksgiving. I was only 40 when he died and he was 66. Now that I am 55 that sounds very young!
I kept most of my blocks up beat but felt I wanted to include him today.

To cheer myself up a bit I went to my LQS, the Quilt Block and bought some pretty fabrics.

Isn't this cool? I am not sure what to do with it but had to have it!

I also made a pit stop at Joanne's to buy these cute little charms. I am planning on making my granddaughter Maddy a charm bracelet for Christmas.

As we all get ready to celebrate Thanksgiving tell me what is your favorite dish or tradition. Ours is a hot and heavy game of charades with no real rules. You can't talk but the subject can be anything, which makes for a fun evening.


Monday, November 19, 2012

Pillow Tutorial

As the holidays approach it is time to think about decorating the house. I have scaled back what I used to do when the kids were little. Not everything I own comes out any more, not enough time or energy to get it all out and put it all back.
This year I decided to make some new "holiday" covers for my pillows in the family room. I think the red fabric is not too Christmasy so I can keep them out all winter for a little spark during those dark months.

I am using a red and white polka dot for the back.

My pillow form is 18" square. I cut my fabric 20" x 20".

Now dig through your not so favorite fabric to use as a backing for the front of the pillow. It is not going to show so it does not matter what you use. My only caution is that if you are using a light fabric for the cover use a light for the scrap so it does not shadow through.

Layer your scrap fabric (it does not matter what side you use), batting and cover fabric the same way as you would any quilt. Press it really good to make sure all wrinkles are out and it even sticks the layers all together so you don't need to baste it. You can if you want........

Next quilt the top. I free motioned in a meandering pattern as I know there will be kids all over these and this will hold up well.

Next trim the quilted cover down to 19" x 19".

For the back cut 2 pieces of your backing fabric 13 1/2 x 19. On the long edge (19") press a 1/4" seam allowance, do it again to hide all those raw edges. Sew it down along the pressed edge.

Place the quilted cover right side up, put one of the back pieces down with the sewn edge to the middle, right sides together.

Now place the other side down, as you can see they overlap.

It will look like this. Pin these together.

Sew all the way around using a 1/2" seam allowance, it is stronger than a 1/4" especially if you want to wash it. As you come to the parts that overlap be sure to reinforce it by back stitiching at least 3 times. It will get a lot of stress putting the pillows in and out.

Trim the corners and pull out through the opening. Push out the corners using a chop stick or other tool.

There you go! It did not take a long time to make, maybe a half hour or so. One down 3 more to go!
Have fun and be sure to email if you have a question.


Thursday, November 15, 2012


Tuesday night my husband, daughter, future son in law and I went to a food tasting for my daughter's wedding. It was a very nice evening and the food was out of this world good.

The presentation of the appetizers was so nice, not what I expected...

This is the salad we picked, isn't it pretty? No bagged salad in a wood like plastic bowl!

Mahi Mahi


The main course was also delicious, sometimes they look good but don't taste good..overall it was a fabulous experience. I thought we would get little small tastes not complete meals!
This was our view from our table. The chef cooked our food and brought it out to us and asked us what we did and didn't like.....we liked it all. Don't you love the blue floor?
On a very sad note did you hear there may never be another Twinkie made? That is the stuff of my childhood. Every kid had a Twinkie in the lunch box at some time in their elementary school life. What will we do without that lovely yellow sponge cake and creamy filling that never went bad, ever?
It makes me want to run out and buy a box......

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Diary Block Tuesday

Heading down the home stretch with these blocks. This one is #50. Why a Z you ask? Last summer I started taking Zumba and love it! I am pretty sure the name and everything else is copy righted so only a Z.
It is such a great fun workout. They call it a dance party and even dim the lights, which is good because in the beginning you feel so uncoordinated.

The best part is the instructors, they can make or break a good time. The other part is the music, crazy stuff I have never listened to or can even understand  (Gangstanam!?)! If you have thought about giving this a try I give it a big thumbs up!


Monday, November 12, 2012

Suzie Strikes Again

This weekend I was in a cleaning mood. Truthfully my bedroom needed some attention and after a while I get cranky when things are a mess. This is where I keep all my quilting books and magazines. I was running out of room to put things in here so now they were piling up on the dresser. Who wants to dust when you have to move around 100 lbs of books and magazines?

I read an organizing book that said in order to really get organized you need to pull out everything and then put back only the things you really want. This is the start and it took me all day Saturday to do it. BUT I was able to go through my books and see what was totally outdated or not to my taste any more and make room for the things I really like. It is freeing try it.

Here you go, look at all the room I have now! The books are even organized in a sort of random way. The top shelf are books that I like but don't necessarily look at often, the second and third are books I look at a lot, fourth applique and fifth scrap or technique books. The bottom shelf holds miscellaneous books that don't fit a category or the shelf!

So why stop now?  I cleaned out all the dresser drawers and found $46. You can find things you totally forgot about too.

A prom picture of me and my now husband, Bob circa 1975. Don't you love the tux and that lovely brown paneling? Oh how vintage.

My 2 oldest sons' graduation pictures...circa 1995 and 1996.

Cards from my first communion.... circa 1964.
One of my best finds was a hand written letter from my grandmother written to me right after my first son was born in 1976. I am so glad and it brought back a lot of good memories.  Maybe I should send a few less emails and a few more hand written notes?
Next I am tackling my closet, I wonder what is in there?