Monday, August 30, 2010


Today was one of those super great kind of days. I got to work more on my messenger bag, and I received a swap package from Laurie. I can't properly explain how happy I was when I got inside that envelope. Such delicious eye candy! My eyes could eat it all day ;D and At least I wouldn't get any more cavities, heh!
As for my bag, today I worked on overall construction. I made a mistake ordering my fabric, and shorted myself on the pod dot. I should have ordered a quarter yard more, but since I didn't; I had to make it work. I did that by sewing together the 1/8th yard I had left and joined it to the 8"xWOF strap piece I already had. The strap ended up being a comfortable length for a strapped purse, but not as long as I like a messenger style bag to be. I don't know yet if I can wear it across my chest. We'll see. I also worked on the lining! I did my first zipper pocket today. It was definitely a learning experience.
I made the hole for the zipper a smidgen too long. I patched the ends with little tabs of fabric to cover that boo-boo. Over all, I'm mighty pleased with myself so far :D This was one of my modifications to the pattern directions (it called for two patch pockets. I made one patch and one zippered). My other modification is going to be to add a tie to the opening of the bag to help keep my things in there. I'm not confident enough to make a zippered purse (and I wouldn't even know how to add one to this kind of project). Maybe if I find a pattern or tutorial with one I'll give it a try.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

New Project!

I totally needed to make something today. My Muse had been withering from lack of use. I looked at the PILE of projects I have and after skillfully avoiding the ones I *should* do, I settled on finally making this quilted messenger bag. It's called 'On the Go' and is a free pattern from Robert Kaufman. I bought the fabrics for this project ages ago. I chose Andalucia by Patty Young for Michael Miller.
See the zipper there? I'm gonna try and make a zippered pocket (there's not one in the pattern, but I need one). I actually own several prints from this range. I fell hard for it earlier this year and was tickled to find it on clearance for 3.50 a yard. Naturally, my fabric math being what it is, I over purchased! (happens to everyone, I'm sure ;D)
My original intention was to make the whole body and flap with the brown and pink floral and all the lining the red/orange fabric with the espresso pod dot as the strap. I discovered today that it was just way too busy a print to have it all over, so I changed it a little. I also wasn't sure how I wanted to quilt the bag. In the end, I decided to do something simple and just highlight the flowers.I actually really like how it looks this way. I just wished the lighting in my house was better! As you can see, I already have the binding on the flap. Now I just have to finish sewing it on (I'm doing it by hand like I would a quilt. I'm probably near to half way done with the bag construction. I still need to assemble the lining, open pocket, and (hopefully) a zippered pocket. If I'm lucky, I might have this bag done by Tuesday! That would make me very happy ;D

Saturday, August 28, 2010


I'm going to just say it. I am disappointed-ish in Tula Pink's new line. I've felt this way for a while now, since she put the images on her blog. I've just been ruminating on it. Naturally, I haven't gotten my hands on it, and probably wont until winter, but the visuals for the range are only so-so (for me). Will I still buy it? A few pieces. I won't lie. The very first thought that popped into my head when I saw the digital images for the range was: Amy Butler. I'm not a huge Amy Butler fan. Even though I love Tula Pink's work, I just can't get off the fence for Parisville. I am also kind of sad to see her leave Moda--but that's only because I'll miss the precuts. The precuts for Westminster/Freespirit are much too expensive in my opinion. I just had to get that off my chest.


Friday, August 27, 2010

One Down

And one to go! My swap partner received her package, and now I don't have to worry about ruining her surprise ;D I made her a little sewing trinket, nothing major. It's really hard to judge what you should make someone, but they do encourage you to. I had a few scraps from various projects that were aching to be something more than clutter, so it all worked out! It helped that I knew that she liked Heather Ross (but who doesn't, right?)

The image is a little dark, but it was night time and my lighting is only so-so. It was scheduled for the mail the next morning, so I took what I could get ;D As you can see there are little bits of Whimsy (Moda), Flutterby (Moda), and Mendocino (Freespirit). I really liked how it turned out (I almost kept it for myself ;D). It finished up roughly 3.25" square. I dunno, I just really like dainty things, so I made it small. I know other pin cushions are more like 6 inches or so. I hope it's a serviceable size.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Crazy for Swaps

I seriously have to tone down my swaps! I have so many going on it's CRAZY. I have so many that I ran out of tape. Now that's a lot. I recently received this from Lucia
Yay! More delicious Tula Pink. I have another 2 Tula swaps in the works. After that, I think I may be at a good place--at least for a month or two ;D I ordered some fabric, too. Some I can actually share! :D
As you can see, Tula snuck into this package, too ;D I think I may be a Tula addict!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Summing it Up

It's been a busy week for me. For starters, my girl doesn't have Lyme's Disease! That was a relief. The health dept sent us a letter letting us know that the tick wasn't a carrier. I also had another dentist appointment, a cleaning this time. Oi. I'm going to be living at the dentist it seems like. I still need the rest of my wisdom teeth pulled and a couple of fillings. I received some packages, but only one I can share. The rest were for swaps (i'm still anxiously waiting for my first swap package to be received by my partner.). I couldn't resist. 2.50-3.00 a yard and the magazine was only 2.69! I actually had much more in my virtual cart. I had to prune it down to keep myself from going over budget (again).Today we went to Arthur Avenue, Little Italy in the Bronx. It was my first time there, but everyone else I went with goes there frequently to shop. It was fun, and I feel like I gained ten pounds ;DThis place had DELICIOUS canolis and eclairs. I wanted to go back and get more. Not to mention some other yummies there in the cabinet. I think I had something to eat at nearly every shop we went (the green grocer, cheese shop, bakery, pastry shop, etcetc. So many specialty places!). I hope we go again soon ;D

Monday, August 16, 2010


My package arrived. Maybe it was cosmic karma, but they gave me an overage of half a yard on one of the prints. I double checked that a few times ;D The fabric is so much prettier than I thought it would be. I would post pics, but I can't on the off chance a certain someone might see it ;D

I started pulling fabrics for my Tula quilt. I still need to purchase 4 fabrics. I'm not completely sure I need them. I feel like I do. I like options! I need to really think about where I'm going with this project. I want to do something modern, and break out of the traditional block styles I've been doing (I've slowly started to do this with my two donated blocks). It feels awkward to go out of my comfort zone, but it has to be done.

Saturday, August 14, 2010


I can't believe my package won't be delivered until Monday. I really don't understand why it had to go to MASS first. That's completely inefficient. It should have been sorted in NY or NJ. Those would have made sense. Not to mention it added 3 days onto the projected delivery (but it doesn't even take 5 hours to drive there from here).

Maybe your shipping costs are high because you don't know how to route your packages effectively?

Friday, August 13, 2010

Laundry's Hidden Secrets

Well, they aren't exactly hidden, unless was in plain sight. I didn't realize my personal color story until today. The last three days I've been doing laundry, but putting it aside instead of folding it. It's been so hot, the idea of folding hot clothes is ick. And I've been running the dryer late at night to try and negate the heating factor. But, you know, laundry doesn't just fold itself. After it was all said and done, I looked at the lopsided stacks of folded garments and realized something.

There are colors people say they like, but the ones they REALLY like are in their clothes. My laundry was a medley of purples, candy pink, oranges, and aqua/teal with the occasional slash of dark chocolate brown or khaki. I very rarely buy purple fabric to create with, but I surround myself with it in other ways. Weird. But now I want to make something purple and orange with bold slashes of candy pink and spots of aqua. Kind of an ode to who I am RIGHT NOW.

I was disappointed today that my UPS package was delayed. I've been fretting over my FQ swap. It's such a delicate balance--giving enough but not overdoing it so that your partner feels bad. But I think everyone secretly hopes they will get one of those overzealous partners that showers them unexpectedly. Sometimes, I think I want to be that person and rain down on someone tons of goodies, but then I have to wonder if I'm just trying to buy a friend. I'm trying to give what feels 'right'. I wish I had my package so I could finish this first swap up and send it off so I could stop thinking about it.

A balm for my anxious heart came in the regular mail. My swap with Jen for the Henry Alexander wedding fabrics :D Yay. I am very excited. I love the cakes. I think I will be using it the most. I want to experiment and use linen in this project. I'm kind of scared. I hear it handles differently than regular quilt weight fabric.
Jen's such a sweetheart. She included some scraps from another line by Heather Ross, and I went all squeally when I saw it. I think I may have even drooled. My hands are aching to do something with it, but I refuse to be impulsive. The line is OOP, and I doubt I'll ever get any more of it. For now it will just have to sit in my stash box.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Daily Grind

Nothing super spectacular happened today (thus far). I am still in recovery from having my wisdom teeth pulled. I haven't felt like doing much of anything at all. I did manage to clean up my craft/sewing table. I even put the cover on my sewing machine! After I was all done, I decided I want to make a sewing machine cover. That's a relatively small project, which I might be able to handle. I still haven't cut into the Heather Bailey I put aside for Dulcie's dress. We'll see what happens ;D Maybe I'll do that this week.

Monday, August 9, 2010


Today was just one of those days ;D Not bad, but not great. We had a few errands to run, but they weren't straight forward. First we had to go to the health dept to drop off a tick we'd found on my daughter this last Friday. They do free testing for Lyme if they find human blood in the ugly thing (and I do mean ugly! We had it in a ziploc and could admire it's...unique appearance). The other errands were just tedious. It didn't help that it was hot, or that I'm worried about my girl having Lyme.

I was glad to have some neato stuff in the mail when it was all over--even more Tula~!I wish I could find more of the bunnies. I'm not a huge fan of the owls, so I don't mind that I only have the purple ones (well after my swap with Lucia). I actually really like the salmon, so I am looking forward to purchasing the last 3 colors of that (blue, pink, & aqua).

In other news, I received my partner info for one of the swaps I'm in! I'm so excited. Our tastes are incredibly similar :D I hope this rocks as much as I think it's going to. I'm still waiting for my partner assignment from the other swap. I'll probably get it tomorrow. Until then, I keep going through my stash trying to figure out what I can be separated with. I'm sure you all sympathize with how hard that is ;D

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Long Long Day

I went to the dentist today. A new dentist. I had not one appointment, but two. One at 11 to get a full set of films, and another at 3 for the actual work (byebye wisdom teeth!). My mouth kills right now, but I guess there was only so long I could escape that particular torture. Knowing I had to go to the dentist today sort of soured my morning in a twist of anticipation and frustration. I'm just glad this stage is over. I still have to go back in two weeks for a cleaning--which luckily is nothing like getting my teeth yanked out ;D

I had two packages that needed to hit the mail this morning, which meant I had to finish Rosemarie's block, and stuff my envelope for my swap with Jen. I need more hours in my morning ;D My little girl wasn't being too helpful with all I had planned. While I got them packed up, they wont mail until Monday. Boo.I don't know how sold I am on the block I made. I like it, but there are things I wish I'd done differently (like pay attention more to crucial details!). I wish I'd rotated the orientation of the top right block. I hope Rosemarie likes it, since that's what really matters. And while I wasn't able to get this into the mail, mail on the other hand, managed to reach me just fine.More Tula! It's enough to make anyone's heart sing. Though, with the arrival of this package, I know there is only one left coming. It will probably be here Monday (well outside of swaps, that is ;D) My Full Moon Forest collection is nearly complete. I have 21 prints from the range, with another 13 that I need to purchase (if I want something from every print). I've been going after it pretty single minded for the last month and a half. There are only 8 more prints that I can actually buy right now. The harder prints will be just that--harder to find! If I'm lucky I'll be able to swap for them.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Adventure Day!

Today was one of those rare days that we decided to do something...different. Ya know, live a little. We decided to visit the aquarium! I hadn't been to this particular one before, and neither had my daughter, so it was the perfect summer adventure. I wish it hadn't been so hot, though. I was sorely tempted to jump in with the sea lions to cool off ;D Dulcie had a fine time, too. She was only too eager to show me that she was a big girl, and walked up and down the steps by herself. Any time I tried to help, she would wave me off with a, "I do it, Mama. I do it." That didn't stop me from hovering encase she did, in fact, need me!
When I came home it was to find a lovely gift from my mail carrier :D More Tula and a splash of Amy Butler. I'm actually not a huge fan of Amy Butler. I have a few pieces of Midwestern Modern (1 & 2), but I can never figure out what to do with them. I have seen some remarkable things made with her designs, though. I guess her stuff isn't completely my style, but not *not* my style either (considering I keep buying things by her!).
I also started (and nearly finished) my block for Rosemarie's quilt. I rummaged through my fabric and found that most of my larger pieces of pink and purple were dog-eared for other projects, but I did have some 1/8 yard cuts of pink. Then a light went off--Hey! Didn't I buy an Eden charm pack? And yes! I did. Eden has pink and purple together. Eureka. The blocks needed to be 9 inches square unfinished. Since I was working with such small pieces, one large block wasn't really possible. I mean I could have made multiple cuts and sewn it together to make one large coherent piece, but I didn't (it didn't even occur to me until just this moment! This is what makes process pieces fun.) So I decided to do multiple small blocks, kind of what I did for Trudy's quilt, but larger.
I wanted to fussy cut one of the Eden birds, but a moment of inattention on my behalf when I was resizing the center block led me to trimming the wrong side of the square so that the bird's beak was lost in a seam. I waffled back and forth between ripping my seams or not, but I didn't have another square with the same bird, and I was already using the the other piece in the second half of my block. So it stayed. The second half of the block is a patchwork plus block. I originally was going to use more of the pastel polka dot for the plus/cross, but it made the block look too washed out. I then opted for the punch of some pink Soiree that I had lying around. I had some trouble with the top plus/cross block. Originally, it was dark pink and more of that pink Soiree. It just didn't look right with the other fabric choices. It was too bold, I think.
I just need to finish the block up, and off into the mail it goes!

Thursday, August 5, 2010


My daughter's new favorite game is to pretend she is an airplane. She puts her arms out and ZOOMS around (saying zoom, naturally.) But midway through, she changes gears and yells BUTTERFLY, and starts flapping her arms and skipping (well, as well as she can. She's not even two yet). Or she likes to put her arm up and yell, 'ready, set, GO!' which means Mommy needs to run around zooming like an airplane. Fun stuff, and it keeps my heartrate up ;D

I can't help but cherish all these little things. I think what makes it more poignant right now is the new collaborative quilting project I joined today. It was inspired by the Trudy quilt (which so far is completely awesome, btw. Lucia et al did a wonderful job), but is benefiting a 4 year old girl. It's being called Rosemarie's Cancer Killin' Quilt. The colors are purple and pink, so I need to rummage through my stash. I *know* I have these colors. Maybe not a bunch of purple, but the pink doth overflow. The group coordinator has two block styles, cross/plus and box-in-box. I think I'm going to make one of each (ideally, anyway).

The mail never fails to disappoint, though I fear I have 3 more packages and then no more for a while. I went CRAZY insane with my buying this last month :x Darn those sales and my little budget.

Monday, August 2, 2010

A Few More Packages

So a few more packages arrived today. They were waiting for me when we returned from Rhode Island this afternoon. There were SIX envelopes which earned me a look from my guy. I usually get them before he notices them. Oops XD. It was more Tula, which made me happy :D I'm really coming along on my Full Moon Forest collection. There are 11 prints that I can still buy, and another 3-4 that I can swap for (I have one pending as we speak for some purple drops and owls).
I also picked up some charm packs from an OOP line called Eclectic. It's a range I had been considering for a while and I finally just took the plunge and bought a few packs. I really like the prints! I can't wait to use them. I think I will buy some more (and some yardage) once I buy a few other prints I really want first.