Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year!!

2009 is about to end and 2010 is about to begin. An end to my early 30's and a beginning to my mid 30's. Man, time is flying. My kid will be in kindergarten this upcoming year and I have been with Quoc for 13 years. Wow!

Well, Christmas was really nice. We had it at my house this year. Its always at my mom's but since my Grandma has been ill she didn't want her to travel. It was probably a good thing. A couple of days before x-mas she had another episode and ended up in the hospital for 5 days. So, we had less people at our house and we went to the hospital a few times that day. Quoc and I ended up getting her an electronic picture frame. She really liked it. She didn't really complain which she always does. Her only complaint was that there were too many pictures of her. I have to admit there were. I used the file on my computer from her birthday and I of course used a lot of her. I'll have to create a new file for her with less of her and more of everyone else.

M made out like a bandit. I try not to get her a lot of toys but she is the only child so she gets way spoiled and this and her birthday are the only time we buy toys. Don't get me wrong - she gets stuff from the dollar store but I mean like real gifts over 10 bucks. She got one of these Alive Husky's. So cute. Ahh man, I was just linking it and I could have saved money if I got it on Amazon. Darn. Oh well, she loves it. She also got a Leapster 2. That one is cheaper from the Leapfrog website. Anyway, that game system has been great especially with all the time we spend at the hospital and the nursing home. She is thoroughly entertained. And it really is educational. My mom made her x-mas dress and M got a dress for one of her dolls. She has always wanted a dress just like hers so my mom made it happen. They were both very cute. (excuse the awful picture - we weren't going out so M's hair was a mess and I took it with my phone. Quoc got a Flip video camera for his birthday so we have video of everything but I forgot to take pictures - oops) My mom also made a ton of Barbie cloths. She messed up though. She was using vintage patterns from when I was a kid and using my old Barbies as models but the Barbies of today have smaller boobs so half of the strapless dresses fell off. My poor mother. We might have to sort some out and leave some at my mom's house where my dolls are and some that won't fall off at our house where the new Barbies are.

Me, I got a jewelry box, necklace and a lamp. I think my mother was trying to tell me I need better light for sewing. She is so good with the hints. Not.
My brother cooked dinner. He is a great cook plus he makes it look pretty. My food is good but not great and its not pretty.
So, onto my new year's crafty project. I am doing the Fall Inspired Mini Quilt and so here is my idea so far. Appliqued trees. And depending on the fabric a couple of leaves on the side out of this batik I have. What do you think? It will probably change. It has like 10 times already and I haven't even picked out the fabric. Sometimes I know exactly what I want to do and other times - I have no clue. Its one of the latter this time. The fun of trying to be crafty and playing with my markers. :)
This will make you laugh. So M started drawing people this past week or so. So she was drawing a picture of grandma. She drew a circle and then she put these lines on both of the insides. I asked her what that was. She ran over to Grandma and touched her face, "These." "You mean wrinkles?" "YES." OH MY GOSH, my brother and I were laughing so hard. My poor mother. The honesty of kids.
I hope everyone has a SAFE and HAPPY new year!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Not a Very Crafty Christmas

I have been having no luck. Seriously...I am trying hard to be crafty but it is not working. First I wanted to make scarves but couldn't find fabric to match (Thanks Michelle - totally going to try grey), then I was going to make these bubble pouches and put some Govida, Frango and Lindt chocolate in it for my office mates, I cut them out, bought everything I needed but then when I was getting ready to sew them together - I can't find the hair elastics that I bought to hook on the buttons. I am getting some more today and then I am sure I will find them.
Then I was going to make these little calendars for my daughter's preschool teachers (there are 10 of them so I wanted something useful but not to expensive) but after M and I drove to 7 different stores in our town looking for the little calendar - I had to order them on line and may not get them in time (might just make as a New Year's gift).Then I was making cookies - since my Grandma is usually the Christmas Cookie Goddess, I had to step up and make them- and the spritz first were deformed but I got that fixed and then I burnt half of them. I did make her traditional Italian cookies yesterday (all 12 dozen) and they turned out so I am 4: 1 on my Christmas crafts/cookie. I should have taken pictures but I wanted to pack them up before I ate too many. :) I have never had them fresh and they are so good fresh. I had to text my brother and brag that I was eating the cookies and he had none. He is looking forward to his stale portion on Christmas.

Oh, and I lost our Christmas cards. I bought the photo cards at Costco, filled out the envelopes but I can't find the cards. Help me...please. So everyone will get those in the new years as well.

On a side note that will make you grossed out but chuckle at the same time - my 91 year old grandma shared a little secret thought she had (I know not so secret any more) - She said, "did you know I have wrinkles on my butt?!" Oh, to get old.
Oh, also you should check this out. I know of Kwanzaa but had never really read anything about it to know much more than its an "African" heritage holiday and it goes for like 7 days but that was all I knew. There was this short post you should read. I wish we all celebrated this sort of thing. All the tenants really should fit in all our lives. Anyway...a little Kwanzaa education for you.
Oh, the very top picture is M and her friends decorating cookies at a friend's house. I didn't make the cookies - thank goodness. The kids would have been so disappointed!

Merry Christmas! I hope everyone has a wonderful day off of work whether you celebrate the day or not.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

I lied

Okay, only a little. I said I would be posting about the scarves I was making. Well, I made the tops then I got so frustrated I threw it to the side. Why so frustrated? Well, the top is mainly dark purples so I wanted a dark purple fleece or flannel for the back. All I could find was bright purple. Do you know where I could get some dark purple flannel or fleece? I wasn't happy with black. I would really appreciate your help and then I could really finish them. :) Thanks.

Monday, December 14, 2009

I'm Back Again and so Quickly

My brother asked me to make him so bags for gifts for x-mas. I said sure as long as he pays for the fabric. I always buy excess fabric so that is how I receive my payment. So, first is the above bag. I made two, one for him and one for myself. I ended up not liking the size of it for me so I think I will send it to my aunt in Texas after I change the button that is. I am not liking it. This bag is from Artsycraftybabe. It is a free pattern of hers called the Phoebe bag. The flowers are hers too. No creativity on my part. :)

This bag is from a vintage McCall's pattern that I acquired from my mother. Its from the late 70's. I like it. Super roomy. I made myself one too. (I have to test them out, right? And I needed a Halloween bag.) This is for my brother's friend who is going to school so she needs room for books and loves skulls. I love this fabric. I got it here at Pink Chalk Fabric. They deliver super fast. I highly recommend them. The buttons are also vintage from my great aunt Oska's collection of buttons.I made two buttercup bags designed by Made By Rae. I thought I messed up on the purply one so I made the maroon one. I put snaps on it and then I couldn't sew around the edge and it really needed it so I was super frustrated. Then the next day I realized, duh, I have a big hole in the bag still. Why not take the snaps off, sew the edge and put the snaps back. I am so dumb sometimes. The purply green one is from Amy Butler's LOVE collection. I made the handle shorter and since is was so wide I folded it in so it has a little peek a boo effect. The maroon is from Anna Maria Horner. I again used a vintage button. I really love that one. I thought about not sending it but I sent a photo of the fabrics to my brother so I kind of have too. I am sending him one extra bag with the intentions of him returning one so I hope its that one.Finally, I made an Amy Butler Swing Bag. I have so gotten my money's worth out of this pattern. I have like four of them for myself and I made one for every one of my friends. Much use. In fact, I have made 4 out of this exact fabric. Its Amy Butler's Nigella line. Love it. I get compliments still when I use mine. This is the pattern that sucked me into making bags. When I was looking at the link I was eyeing another one...hmmm....

My next project is making skinny scarves. I broke my ruler so I need get another one before I continue but maybe I can share this weekend with you. That is what everyone is getting this year. Skinny scarves made with kimono silk and fleece. Odd combo, huh? Its gonna work, really. :)

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Wow - its been awhile

I have been so preoccupied with my grandma and the holidays that I haven't had a chance to blog at all. We really haven't done anything but holiday stuff. M and I saw the Nutcracker and we made gingerbread houses, had a sleep over and more. Nothing too exciting to share. But I did finish my quilt blocks for the three bees I am in. I forgot to take pictures of all of them but here are a few. Check in tomorrow for the bags I made. :) Oh, I threw in a couple of my kid too. The first one is at the Nutcracker. My mom made M's dress and the next is Gingerbread making. You can't tell but she is wearing a Grinch t-shirt. She picked it out herself. Nut.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

So Much to Say

First, We went to Great Wolf Lodge for a little vacation. That place is AWESOME! If you have any in your area you should go. The only one on the west coast is here in Washington but there are a ton in the east. It has indoor water slides, a craft room for kids, a teen room, a build a bear type station, a build your own crocs station, and a game called Magi quest where you buy this wand and game and run around the 5 floors fighting dragons and collecting ruins. M and Quoc had a blast. Above is M helping a fairy.
Then, I took a class Monday from Jean Wells. It was her Intuitive Design class. She has a book on it but the class was so inspiring. She taught us how to make wavy lines and to sew without a ruler. Plus ways to inspire yourself and create ideas that you love. Then she showed us how to finish our quilts off with a technique from her book but since changed how she does it. Man, I hated to see the day end. Below are some of her quilts I wanted to run away with but thought the other 25 participants would catch me. You have to check out her book out and definitely take a class from her if you can. She is over at the Stitching Post in Oregon if you are in the area. She luckily came to Bellingham for this one though. I am so excited to get something made for myself. I hope my family likes it cus its what they will probably get for x-mas. :)

Sunday, November 1, 2009

We love Halloween!

Here we are. Our 12th Halloween together. Why would I know something random like that? Because we love Halloween. We have every Halloween picture on our wall- year round! So here we are; a gypsy, A vampire and a fairy princess.
We went trick or treating with our friends and their kids. My friend is a genius and lined her daughter's princess costume with fleece. Awesome! No coat required. We totally lucked out and a storm came through the night before and wiped all the clouds away. We had a clear sky and it was pretty warm. Yea, for Trick or treating. M got like 5 full size candy bars!
We are going to Great Wolf Lodge this week. We are really excited! A water park indoors, spas, games, food. It should be a blast! We haven't gone on a vacation well since I was preggers with M and really it didn't count. It was an overnight bus trip to Paris. Not much romance with a bus full of people. :) Then again, not much romance water sliding with a four year old. :) But we will LOVE it!

Monday, October 26, 2009

My New Bag and a Few complaints

Here is my new bag. I was making it for my brother to give as x-mas gifts but I decided to make myself one for Halloween since I had exactly enough fabric. I absolutely love this fabric. I'm not one to wear skeletons or skulls other than Halloween but my brother's friend is. The pattern is an old 1970's pattern I acquired from my mother a while back. It is a great way to display your favorite fabric. The handle is supposed to be tied but I find that it usually isn't that comfortable so I sewed them together and put some red buttons on. I wanted turquoise but I wasn't going to go to the store for buttons when I have like 5 billion at home. Red will do. The inside has one pocket that was fussy cut so that it had a little picture on it. So far I love it! Like my fancy pen with my name on it. I bought one for my niece for her 15th birthday. I think she was more excited over the pen than the 50 bucks we gave her. Kids. So weird. I also made a mini quilt for STUD but I can't show it yet. Soon. It is very cute.So here are my complaints. One, MY WASHER DIED MID CYCLE. So I have a washer full of wet cloths and water. So annoying. Second, I know I live in Washington and we are known for rain but oh my goodness, we have been getting so much! I can't believe it! I guess that is what happens when you have a virtually perfect summer with record heat. So, I guess I won't complain. :) Plus my grandma is in the hospital again. I hope your day is going better than mine. I pulled out the Mike's Hard Berry Drink. Yumm...

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Bags Galore

I got very motivated this weekend and made some bags. Both of these are for ladies in my office. I just kind of well, hate this bag so I was lacking motivation to make it. Its my design - I really can't blame anyone. It might be that I have been carrying the same bag in different colors for months and I am sick of it. Why I didn't make myself a new one you ask? Well, I needed to make these first. :)
This second bag is for my friend Kris who is a sewer but you know, never any time, so she asked me to make it for her friend whose a sewer as well. It came as a kit so I just had to follow directions. It was supposed to have free motion quiting on it but I am not very good at that so I embellished the wand with shiny beads. Each sewn individually so they shouldn't fall off...I hope. My mom made the saying for me on her machine since mine isn't so high tech.

The Wicked Witch side I traced the hat and the band on the hat. If I knew how to do trapunto that would have been cool. I have the panels too so I may make myself one as well. Oh, I didn't take pictures of the inside but it is lined with yellow fabric with ruby slippers on it and has pockets made from stills of the film on the same panel. Its lined with eco-felt. I am not overly familiar with it but I really liked the stiffness of it. I wonder if it washes well. The handles are webbing.
So this last bag...I know...its not done yet, was made from scraps I had. I'm calling it my library bag. I need to go back to the fabric store and see if I can get more red to line it and make the handles. I seriously used every scrap. Look at the flower- scraps. The flower is removable. Its one of the Kanashi flowers from this book.
Scraps. See the line at the top. I didn't have enough to make it the whole size so I improvised. I actually like it. I would have made it a bigger strip but...scraps. That is all I had. :)

I should have been working on the bag my mom asked me to make or the four bags my brother commissioned for x-mas but oh well. The Library bag was way more fun and took me like a half hour.
Now I need to work on quilting bee blocks. :)

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Baby Quilt and WIP

So here are the two quilts I mentioned earlier. This one is the baby quilt for my friend.
Here is a close up of the rainy day girls. I ordered it in purple or blue but they sent me the pink. I was sort of bummed but I guess it all worked out. They are super cute. Honestly, I bought it to make myself something.
This is the back. I didn't know the baby's name but it really needed something so I quickly hand embroidered a rainy day umbrella.
Here is my WIP. Its a lime green and yellow string quilt. I love it. My hubby even loved it. Too bad it doesn't match anything in our house. As you can see on the top is white. I still have to do a white border all around and then I will bind it in one of the lime green fabrics. Back, you ask, got me. Not that far. :) I'm really happy with how it is turning out. I was thinking about selling it on etsy. It would be my first quilt. It all depends, of course, on the final quality. I won't sell anything that I am not fully proud of. I am sure you all understand. :)

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Dresses, dresses and a miniquilt

I can't believe it has been that long since I posted. I still haven't taken a picture of the two quilts I made. Okay one quilt, one top. The weather has turned so I don't have many options since my camera is dying and doesn't take indoor pictures very well. Any suggestions for a new camera? I keep reading reviews but then I read a bad one and decide to keep looking. But either way here are some pictures of other things I made. :)
I love this little dress. I saw it and had to make it and I am not someone who makes cloths for their child. Besides the one's I am showing you - I have only made one other dress for her and calling it make is a stretch since it was this funky wrap dress. I'm not even going to try to explain it - it was a weird, super simple design. Anyway, this dress is the Kyoko dress from Modkids. I got it at PinkChalkFabrics. Super fast delivery. M is going to wear it at her great grandma's 91st birthday party or maybe to meet my sister in law's soon to be in laws. She wants my hubby and me to come to be buffers for her parents. They can be odd as all parents can be.
Here is the second dress. I know, I was totally motivated. So weird. This one M really wanted a purple dress so I used all stash fabric. I was so proud of myself for not buying more. The kyoko dress I had to buy the turquoise but I had the black part. It is intended for a play dress. In fact, she already stained it the first day she wore it. It is really big and airy which I think she loves. She loves to be a naked baby. And she hates when I say naked baby since she is not a baby! This is the Syndey dress from Modkids as well. It has a pointed hood (or the option to make a rounded one) and you can have short sleeves or make it a shirt. My kid likes dresses. Oh and it is supposed to have a strip work bottom but I just did one fabric. The fabric was crazy enough.
Here is my mini quilt from Doll Quilt Swap 7. I was so excited to get it. I love the quilting and it smells really good. Her blog is at Craftalittle. I love it. My daughter ran around the house with it with a roll of tape trying to find a place to put it up. I think I am going to put it up in the hallway since I have nothing there yet. Don't worry - I'm not taping it. I think it is taped to my desk right now.
Here is the back.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

A couple more projects

The beginnings of my string quilt. I had all these yellow and lime greens. Its almost all the way put together and it looks awesome. I just haven't gotten a photo yet.
A tutu for my little one. It turned out very cute. I looked for the photo of her last year that was adorable but I can't find it. Here's the tutorial for the tutu. it is super simple. You can make hundreds of them and charge like 40 bucks for them. That's about what they cost on etsy and the ballet supply store and they are made the exact same way - I kid you not. How annoying.
M is loving preschool .They already went on a field trip to Western Washington University to look at dinosaur poop. How cool. I wish I could have gone but nooo...I had to work. Stupid job keeping me from looking at dinosaur poop. :)
I also finished a quickie baby quilt. I was supposed to see my friend this weekend but she is the worst for keeping plans so it didn't happen. I still have to take a photo before i mail it.
Hope the new school year it going well for you!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Good Ol' Summertime Mini Quilt Swap

I got my first mini quilt. I am so excited. It went right on my wall. It was made by Kim at Sunshine Girl. She is new to the world of blogging. Its nice to see someone newer than me and she is opening an etsy shop. Keep checking for her great items. It looks like a ton of awesome buttercup bags will be there soon!
Isn't this the cutest fabric ever! I am jealous that I don't have any. Well, any uncut. At least I can enjoy it on my wall. Thank you Kim!!!

And of course a picture of my child on her first day of preschool. I know it is just like day care but she was so proud of herself and being a big kid. She picked out all her cloths and hair accessories for her first day. It actually brought a tear to my eye - my baby is growing up. I was also totally corny and made her cookies so she would have warm cookies on her first day of school. Don't worry- I am no June Cleaver. They were Tollhouse premade dough. :) She won't know the difference.

I have a ton of projects to show you but I am going to spread them out but as a hint - I have another quilt block done, two quilts, a tutu. I have been so busy and motivated!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Another One Bites the Dust

I finished another block. YEA! Now I have one that I am waiting for more fabric and one that I am avoiding. The one I am avoiding I am going to start. It is my goal to finish that one this weekend so I can do something for myself. I need to make a skirt for M, a couple of bags, and I want to make a string quilt. Wish me luck!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

More Quilting Bee Blocks

Anna's Block, originally uploaded by samcrawley.
Another Quilting Bee block done. This one is for Anna. She wanted something scrappy so I made the Silent Star from Eleanor Burn's Victory Quilts book. I had to call my mom and tell her it was a bit odd I was confused by a beginners block. It was just figuring out what Eleanor Burns meant in her instructions. She has a different way of doing things. Quite simple once I figured it out and I think the block turned out nice so I am happy. I hope Anna likes it.

This block is for Amy. She wanted a square inside a square and only three fabrics. Seems simple enough except I don't think I had enough fabric. All I have left is some purple and nothing even usable of the others. I am not happy with this block. I emailed Amy to see if she liked it, otherwise I am taking it apart tonight and trying again. I want to carry the circles across although it will cut the tree and I will make the purple block bigger. Or I could raise the tree higher and cut off the top. I will have to get the ruler out and figure out if I have enough fabric. I hope it works if I do it or I am screwed. Hopefully, Amy doesn't like it so I can redo it.

After these I have two blocks left. One is do whatever and the other I have to make a basket on point. I'm kind of intimidated by that one which is why I got so far behind. I like to do things in order and I should have done that one a long time ago so I didn't do the others. Just stared at the envelopes. It will be done this weekend. Maybe even tonight. We will see. :)

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Mini Quilt and Some Blocks

More pictures....
Here is my mini quilt for the Doll Quilt Swap 7. The change I made was added three dots to the center of the big tree. My Grandma suggested it and after I did it - I loved it. It filled in enough white space to make me happy.
Here is the back. I shrunk it down. Okay, not on purpose. I prefer the new look but I used chalk to make the quilting lines and the chalk would not come off! I washed it 6 times, I used Shout, OxiClean and Grandma's Secret Spot Remover. Finally, it came out enough but I got the shrunken worn look. Its okay. I think it looks better on the back than the front. It makes the quilting stand out on the back. By the way, the pattern is my dessert plate, 8.5 inches and I just traced it many times. No pattern. No rhyme or reason.
And a quilt block for one of the bees I am in. I figured I should really get them done. This is for Kathy in Pieced Together Quilting Bee. She wanted a log cabin block. I hope she likes it.
Here is Edith's in Pieced Together Quilting Bee. She wanted something that evoked circles. What's more circlee (is that a word?) than the drunkards path? I hope she likes it. Its really loud!
My goal is to finish the rest of the blocks this weekend. I'm sure everyone would like their blocks back. Fall is here so its time to buckle down. :)