Friday, January 29, 2010

Happy Furlough Friday!

Happy Furlough Friday to all you California state workers enjoying a day off.  To those of you unfortunate enough to have to work today, my condolences, and may the rest of the afternoon fly by!!

Lily and Luigi have spent the morning either napping in the sunshine or staring out the front window, like a pair of mini-busy-bodies, barking at anything that happens to be moving at the moment.

I've spent the morning working Valentine's Day projects, putting together a few kits, and writing patterns.

My Dad and I just got back from visiting his mom -- who lives in south-eastern Missouri -- for the week of her 94th birthday!  Grandma absolutely loved her birthday quilt.  It's now happily living on the back of her favorite chair.

Using fabric from Moda's Northern Solitude line, I just sewed some simple blocks together, trying to throw the colors together as randomly as possible.  This was a bit of a hard thing for me to do, since I usually a bit, shall we say ... "particular" ... in the way the colors, patterns, and blocks are combined.  I really wanted a happy, random, "patch-worky" quilt, and I have to say, I'm pretty happy with how it turned out.

I have two Gypsy Rose Layer Cakes waiting to be played with and a partially finished Aviary baby quilt for a friend waiting in the wings ...

... but have spent the morning playing with Valentines Day fabric instead.  Mom and I are patiently awaiting a shipment of Sandy Gervais' L'Amour, due from the Fat Quarter Shop early next week, so in the meantime, I've been playing with some browns, pinks, and reds from my stash!

This morning, I just finished a "disappearing 9-patch block" tablerunner, inspired by Rachel's Christmas Table Topper Tutorial at Moda's Bake Shop.  The runner is available for sale in my etsy shop.  

I'm so happy with how it turned out, that I'm also listing several kits in the store as well, in case you'd like to make one yourself!

Finally, here is my stash-busting update!

Weeks 4 & 5: 1/17/10 - 1/23/10 & 1/24/10 - 1/30/10
Used: 1.27 yards
Purchased: 7.68 yards (yikes!)
YTD: +7.59 yards

... better get back to work!  Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

New Background!

Our new background is courtsey of LeeLouBlogs.  Visit her blog for a fabulous selection of free blog backgrounds!

Monday, January 25, 2010

"Helping Haiti" Quilt Auction

In light of the recent earthquakes in Haiti, the Fat Quarter Shop is hosting a quilt auction through their blog, The Jolly Jabber to raise funds.  They have links to several charitible organizations and are auctioning off over 20 items made by some of your favorite bloggers and designers to raise money for disaster relief.  Please take a look at these beautiful items and pass the link along!

Monday, January 11, 2010

Stash-busting 2010!

I've seen a trend in some of the blogs I've been following, where bloggers are keeping track of all the fabric going in and going out of their stash in an effort to use more fabric than they buy.  After having spent some time over Christmas break organizing my stash, I've decided to jump on the bandwagon!

Luckily, you start the year off at zeros, keeping track of all fabric (quilt-top, binding, and backing) purchased and used throughout the year.  The goal is to keep your final number in the negative range -- which, I guess, should alleviate the guilt about buying new fabric, right?  I will be counting fabric as used when the project is finished -- as in ready to be sold or gifted -- which should be a big incentive to actually finish projects before starting new ones!!!!

So, without futher ado, here goes!

Week 1: 1/1/10 - 1/2/10
Used: 0 yards
Purchased: 0 yards
YTD: 0 yards

Week 2: 1/3/10 - 1/9/10
Used: 0 yards
Purchased: 0 yards
YTD: 0 yards
Week 3: 1/10/10 - 1/16/10
Used: 5.88 yards -- pictures coming soon
Purchased: 1.5 yards  5.56 yards -- found a great sale I couldn't pass up! :(
YTD: +1.88 yards

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Happy New Year

After two months of homework and finals, a week of Christmas festivities with friends and family, and a week of relaxing with my hubby and our two rug rats, I’m starting to feel ready to welcome in the new year … even if I’m a few days late.

This year’s handmade cadeaux de l'annĂ©e were Amy Butler “Birdie Slings”.  The four pictured below were for my mom, and my three sisters-in-law.  There were five total, but the fifth sling was was shipped down south early, thus missing the obligatory Dec. 23rd group pictures.

If you don’t have this pattern already, I recommend getting it – it’s available through and number of other online quilt shops.  The bag is so handy, great to use while traveling, stylish, and easy to make all at the same time.  It also can be put together in a weekend, which makes it a quick, fun project!

The other handmade Christmas gift this year was a rather large quilt for my grandma, made from Moda’s Glace line – my absolute favorite Moda collection for Christmas 2009.  The quilt was made from a single layer cake, along with a ½ yard of a print from the collection for borders and binding, and some fabric I just happened to chance upon that looked like it was MADE to go with this collection.  I used a triangular pattern for the body of the quilt – which was frustrating for me since no matter how hard I try, they never line up like they’re supposed to – but all in all, I was pleased with how it turned out. … and Granny?  She loved it and even cried a little when I gave it to her.  It was just a very small way of saying thanks for all the blankets she’s made us over the years.

Speaking of my Granny, I will be continuing to carry her beautiful hand-knit scarves in my etsy store through the end of the cold weather season.  I’ll be uploading the remaining lists this week, but please keep checking back, as she has another shipment she is sending my way in a couple of weeks.

Other than that, crafting at my house has been a little on the slow side.  I’m still working on knitting socks.   On one of my lunch-time forays to JoAnns, I came across this book:

This book is really great.  It has flip pages for different cuffs, bodies, heels, and toes, and you put them together however you like - kind of like the “choose-your-own-adventure” books they had when we were kids.  

I officially finished my first PAIR of socks back in October. I’m not the greatest knitter, so I found the project a little frustrating at times and starting the second sock at the right place in the yarn so that the striping stayed the same was a bit of a challenge, but I was so happy to have them finished – and my mom was so happy to receive them as a Christmas gift!

I found my latest sock project on  My user name is “poplun” if you’d like to find me.  The pattern’s name is “Nine-to-Five” and is supposed to yield beautifully cabled socks, as pictured here in the author Nicole Hindes' blog:

However, after finishing the first sock and turning it right-side out, I realized that the stitch I thought was a “knit” stitch is actually what is really called knitting through the back stitch, which makes cables look more like neat little yarn tangles.  The finished sock doesn’t look bad … it just doesn’t look like I expected it too. I am going to persevere, however, and finish the second sock still knitting the wrong way, but I’m probably going to hit JoAnn’s big yarn sale this week, to pick up a new color for a pair of socks made the right way.