Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Stash Busting Blog Hop

Today I'm excited to be the next stop on the Stash Busting Blog featuring projects from two books, 50 Fat Quarter Makes and Scrap Happy Sewing by Kim Kruzich (Retro Mama)

Before I forget, don't miss out.
Hop over to StitchCraftCreate to find out how to win the fabulous prize below for more fun!

I've been a fan of Kim's for years and I was so excited when I saw that she had a book coming out.  I've thought about buying her doll pattern on Etsy more times than I can count.  So when I spied that doll featured on the cover of her book and I knew that I finally had my chance.

I had some fat quarters in the mail from Michael Miller as part of the Sewtopia Chicago fabric challenge (I'm leaving for that today!) and just needed to find a solid Michael Miller fabric to match to start making my doll. Oh and some fun wool felt...although I'm definitely allergic to wool...itch itch itch.

Got started on my Sewtopia Candice challenge. I'm using a pattern by @retro_mama and I'm super excited. #michaelmillerfabrics #michaelmillerchallenge #mmfchallenge #mmfsewtopia

 The little shoes just kill me!!

Well that was harder to turn right side out than I expected but it's looking super cute. One leg sewn! @retro_mama #mmfsewtopia #mmfchallenge #michaelmillerfabrics #michaelmillerchallenge

And I love those adorable buttons from some Matilda Jane sweaters.  So many sweet details.

Oh she's going to be cute!! I'm having fun with her outfit from some renaissance ribbon to up cycled sweater buttons. My first doll is coming together!! Pattern by @retro_mama  And I'm killing two birds with one stone on this. This is also my @sewtopia @m

A hand embroidered face and machine stitched hair.  Oh it's so freaking cute!

Stitching down hair and the power just went out������. Stupid snow storm in March.

She came together just as she should.  The pattern was easy to follow, though the doll was not *quite* as simple to make as I thought.  So worth it though.  She's so cute (have I mentioned that yet?)  Oh and I used Michael Miller Cotton Couture Taupe for her skin color.  

My first doll!

My daughter requested that she have pig tails instead of a ponytail like the pattern has, so I simply doubled the hair and made two.  Then she went and got two of her hair clips that apparently she is now done with to put in the doll's hair.  Perfect!

My first doll!

And dolls and little girls are just meant to be.  This was such fun to shoot.  

My first doll!

My first doll!

I love that she has this new sweet friend.  I imagine that I'll end up making dresses for her.  I'm definitely fond of her myself.

My first doll!

Monday, April 13, 2015

Wee Gallery Dress

 Today I want to share with you a sweet dress that I made for my daughter from one of my favorite Wee Gallery, Dress Me For the Playground, fabrics by Dear Stella.

Dear Stella Wee Gallery Fabrics and Dress

I was so excited when I first saw these fabrics at Fall Market 2014.  They are just too precious and immediately knew that I would have to make at least one dress for my five year old daughter.  I was motivated to sew a short sleeve dress for an upcoming vacation to Florida (far from our snowy northern home).  

Dear Stella Wee Gallery Dress

But a disclaimer: my daughter ended up with pneumonia and doesn't quite look her normal perky self in these photos.  I may be a stage mom though because gosh darn it, I toted that dress all the way to Florida and sewed it the day before the I was going to get those beach pictures. lol

Dear Stella Wee Gallery Dress

I used a "easy" pattern from Simplicity for the dress.  I'm calling foul on that.  This was NOT an easy pattern.  That neckline is tricky and requires some very precise sewing.  But I plowed through because I'm up for a challenge and well...the pieces were already cut. ;)

Dear Stella Wee Gallery Fabrics and Dress

I was extremely pleased with myself by the time I got to this point. I'm convinced they put trim on the pattern picture to cover those neckline seams. lol

Dear Stella Wee Gallery Fabrics and Dress

Still, pneumonia, tricky seams, a random beach on Sanibel Island...and I've managed to capture exactly what life was like this at this moment.  It's such a sweet dress and I can't wait to see my daughter wear it here when it finally stops snowing around here.

Dear Stella Wee Gallery Dress

Dear Stella Wee Gallery Dress

We even managed to snag a family photo...poor girl was feeling so bad here.  I promise she had a good time and was on good meds by then. But boy was I lucky to even get these shots.  I must REALLY love this fabric. ;)

Dear Stella Wee Gallery Fabrics and Dress

Thursday, April 9, 2015

40 Bags in 40 Days: Overview

So Lent is over and I thought I would get back to you all with how I did on my 40 bags in 40 days.  If you follow me on IG, then this is probably all a repeat for you.  But I think it will be fun to see the pictures in one place at one time.

I never did follow the actual 40 bags in 40 days philosophy.  I just took the time of Lent to tackle a single area in one day or a huge area over the course of many days.  And I'm pretty proud of the work that I did.  Nothing is perfect and I certainly have more to tackle.  But I've organized and purged areas that I have literally been meaning to do for YEARS.  And I'm a purger!!  lol

I made progress in my bathroom drawers...a surprisingly hard area for me to tackle.  I brutally tossed makeup and hair accessories.  And I don't miss ANYTHING!


I got rid of half of my shoes and I find my closet soooo much more peaceful.  It is easier to see what I have, what I might really need and know that I truly wear the shoes that are left.


And socks!  That was an embarrassing mess of a drawer!


I spent a lot of time in my sewing room.  A huge thing that I did was get rid of all of my yarn and knitting and crocheting supplies.  It's been such a burden to me that I don't really enjoy that type of craft.  I had sooo much and I was just pulled down by it.  So I gave it away to someone.  That was a big box!

I went through notions especially and tossed.




I went through my garment fabrics and got more realistic about those fabrics and project ideas.  Another HUGE box gone.

I rearranged furniture to better suit my layout in my sewing room and actually display my quilts.  I'm so happy with how it is looking but there is still work left to do!


I would do it all again in a heartbeat.  And I will continue to go through things.  There were books and clothes and all kinds of things not pictured...but I made a huge dent and gave myself hope that I can truly get rid of things that I don't need.

And remember...this is coming from a very organized person.  I'm learning that even if "everything has its place" that doesn't necessarily mean that it should stay.  I had homes for the things I got rid of.  I'm not a crazy hoarder.  But I could see how much LESS I need.  And the areas that I tackled make me so HAPPY now when before they were at best lackluster.

It was hard to keep up the pace of doing something every day for 40 days.  But I would say that between the really big projects I tackled and the smaller, every day ones, that I was pretty successful at maintaining it as work in progress.  And it has definitely helped to change the eyes that I see with.  It is simply the case that I personally work better with less.  I'm more efficient, less anxious and more productive.  So here's to more of that in the future!!

Monday, April 6, 2015

Sew Organized by Heidi Staples - Blog Hop

I'm pleased to be on today's stop for the blog hop for Heidi Staples new book, Sew Organized  for the Busy Girl : Tips to Make the Most of Your Time & Space.  It includes 23 Quick and Clever Sewing Projects as well! Oh and let's talk about how freaking adorable her book cover is!!

Heidi actually interviewed me a while back and a couple of words of "wisdom" from me can be found in the pages along with thoughtful tips from other bloggers and designers you may know. If you find the project below, I'm on the page across from it.  It made me quite happy to be right near this sweet project. lol  Irrational but true.

Perhaps my favorite thing of all about Heidi's book, projects and all, is her introduction.  She is encouraging us all to add more JOY to our lives.  If you are reading this, then I don't think I need to tell you that sewing can add huge joy if we let ourselves have some time and drop some deadlines or self imposed vision of what our sewing should be.  We just need to recapture or continue with the joy of sewing.

Today I wanted to showcase one of the projects from Heidi's book in particular: her Dotty Hexagon Pillow.  It struck a cord with me because it reminded me so much of a pillow I made a while back for The Pillow Talk Swap back in the day. She's added this lovely extra element of "dots" using white hexagons as a polka dot. She also gives tips for sewing Hexagons and refers to my friend Tacha's Book, Hexa-Go-Go as a source for working with Hexagons.

Here's the pillow I made use EPP and also a charm pack from Kona and the accuquilt Go! baby

Rainbow Hexagon Pillow

Rainbow Hexagon Pillow - Quilting

Rainbow Hexagon Pillow

It was so fun to go back and look over that project.  You can check out my original post on that HERE.
And as I mentioned, I love Heidi's version that uses white hexagons as polka dots.  Oh and her pillow is rectangular rather than square. Clearly Heidi and I love many of the same things!

I hope you all will follow along on the great blog hop that is set up for the book and see many more of the projects.  There are lots of little organizing projects!! Oh and hop back to Lynne's post and see if you can still get in on the giveaway there for a copy of the book.

March 30 - Lynne of Lily's Quilts (Tour Kickoff & Book Giveaway!)
April 6 - Jodi of Tales of Cloth & Angela of Cut to Pieces
April 13 - Lindsay of Craft Buds & Debbie of A Quilter's Table
April 20 - Leanne of She Can Quilt
April 27 - Fat Quarter Shop
May 4 - Erin of Why Not Sew?
May 11 - Jennifer of Ellison Lane Quilts
May 18 - Svetlana of SOTAK Handmade
May 25 - Lucy of Charm About You
June 1 - Maureen of Maureen Cracknell Handmade
June 8 - Becca of Bryan House Quilts
June 15 - Beth of Plum & June
June 22 - Jessica of Quilty Habit
June 29 - Caroline of Sew Can She
July 6 - Heidi of Fabric Mutt (Tour Wrap!)

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

April Fool's Day Sale at Interweave - No Joke!

Save an Additional 50% off at Interweave Store with Offer Code NOJOKE50

Happy April 1st!   Interweave Press is getting into the fun of things today with some real NO JOKE sales.  For TODAY ONLY, you can save 50% off at Interweave using the code NOJOKE50

ETA:  Okay, it looks like there are some hidden restrictions on this.  I checked and it for sure works on my book, but it looks like it doesn't work on the DVDS because they are too new.  So that means that it won't work on the new Quilt Con mag or latest issues of magazines.  But can get my book for just over $10 and that's fun right? I'm trying to look on the bright side....

There are of course so many yummy things you can buy over there, but I'd be remiss if I didn't point you in the direction of the my book, A Quilter's Mixology, my DVD, Sewing Techniques for Accurate Curved Piecing: Basics and Beyond DVD or even the entire 1500 series of the PBS airing Quilting Arts show (yeah, I might appear in there too)

Oh! And as I went looking for the links, I discovered a package deal that I didn't even know they were offering.  This is pretty cool! Modern Quilt Fundamentals, Piece and Quilt like a Pro. It includes a copy of my book, my DVD, a set of Bloc Loc 2:1 Drunkard's Path Templates, and then a DVD by Catherine Redford of Machine Quilting and an issue of International Quilt Scene Magazine.  It's currently on Sale for $50 without the deal.  And THAT is a steal.  (I checked and it doesn't look like the code will apply to deal but try never know with computer stuff)

Save an Additional 50% off at Interweave Store with Offer Code NOJOKE50

Save an Additional 50% Off at Interweave with Offer Code NOJOKE50

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Quilt Con Magazine Review and giveaway!

*the giveaway has ended*

Boy it's been one review after another around here, but I'm happy to share yet another great Magazine with you.  A special edition print by Interweave Press, publishers behind Stitch magazine, Modern Patchwork magazine and many others, titled simply Quilt Con.

It's really a lovely magazine clearly directed at the audience of Quilt Con and those who would be interested in learning more about it.  There are some fabulous Modern Quilt designs in there, some with directions on how to make them and some as special features of quilts shown at the Quilt Show of Quilt Con.  I wasn't able to attend Quilt Con myself so it was fun to get a glimpse into some of the quilts that were shown.

I particularly loved this quilt, Broken Bars by Rebecca Roach of Austin, TX.  I think I love how it is both on trend with the concept of arrows and extremely reminiscent of Native American and Southwest styles at the same time.  And ALSO I think it is a perfect quilt for a guy!  That is hard to accomplish in one quilt.  Seemingly simple, this quilt just pulls me in more and more.

Broken Bars

Curves, I'm happy to report, are popping up everywhere! And the quilt Picnic Petals (a variation on a Flowering Snowball design) was another quilt that caught my eye.  And lucky for us all, there are instructions here on how to achieve that design in the magazine. This quilt was made by Sheri Cifaldi-Morrill from Southern Connecticut. I love her use of color and of course the curves.  I'm working on a flowering snowball pillow myself right now as a matter of fact.  Great minds!

Picnic Petals

Another curved quilt that I adore (and if I'm remembering correctly I saw first in the first stages of design on Facebook in a group called Quilt Design a Day) is one called Balancing Act by Amanda Hohnstreiter of Thorndale, Texas.  This is one of those quilts that I wish I had designed.  It just speaks directly to my aesthetic of curves and colors.  I'm so glad that it was picked to be in the magazine and shown off. I can tell that it is made with Drunkard's Path blocks and constructed in the same way that I do in my my mind just starts exploding with more ideas!  A good quilt design will do that for you.

Balancing Act

The magazine shows oodles of delicious quilts like these and has some fun features on a few of your favorite faces in modern quilting and design.  You get a glimpse at Laurie Wisbrun, Kimberly Kight, Malka Dubrasky, and Lily Gonzales.

And perhaps one of the most remembered and/or notorious things that happened at the first Quilt Con (depending on your personal preferences) was the sheer number of Tattoos that people received.  To honor a new tradition that started with the first Quilt Con, there was a great article on two tattoo artists that this time the MQG decided to have on the floor of the show for people to get a tattoo right there! I don't know how many did this time, but it was also fun to see that the vendors got into the spirit of things with various kinds of temporary tattoos for those of us who may not be ready to commit to permanent body art. ;) 

All in all, it's a fun magazine to pick up if you weren't able to attend Quilt Con or if you want a fun souvenir. 
By the Editors of Quilting Arts® Magazine
F+W; $14.99

Of course, what fun would it be without a giveaway?  So I'm happy to say that Interweave is giving away a copy to one lucky reader.  To win, simply leave a comment below!  Have a tattoo?  Share?  Love Modern Quilts?  Let us know!  Hate them?  Let us know that (Well...maybe in gentle language...hate is pretty strong lol).  Did you attend Quilt Con? Have a favorite moment?  Anything is game!

Congratulations to the lucky winner, # 54  Nancy L My quilts have been a mixture but probably leaning toward the more traditional. But I am liking modern more and more. 

Good luck!!


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