Tuesday, March 31, 2009

AMVO



Once a year we pick a date for Annual Mader Veg Out (AMVO) day. It is a day for us to do, well...nothing! There is no emailing, phone answering, folding of laundry, or working out. We do shower though. But we're allowed to wear pj's all day if we want.

I love AMVO because it is good family/relaxation time. This year we watched movie after movie. We had popcorn and ordered pizza for delivery. I created rule #1: No cooking. Only ordering out. I like that rule.




I love this picture of MiniB with his little popcorn bowl. It just captures the great time we all had. Yay AMVO! Can't wait for next year. Every family should take just one day a year to be together and relax a little bit. We'll keep this tradition even if it means me tying my kids down when their teens to force them to be with their old parents.

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Sunday, March 29, 2009

New Quilting Project





I am so excited to show you the fabric I purchased for my new quilt! Isn't it gorgeous? It's the Snippets by American Jane for Moda collection purchased from my favorite online store--The Fat Quarter Shop. I love that place. Their customer service is awesome. I lay it all out and just stared at it when it came. B laughed at me while I stared in amazement at all the fabric goodness.

So, a couple posts back, I had told you I was going to participate in Elizabeth's Quilt A-long. But I do have a day job and she's already on the backing! I just don't work that quickly. I still plan to do the QAL, but I'll follow her directions at my own pace.

This fabric is for a quilt that I saw on the cover of Quilts and More--not the current issue but a back issue. I'm altering it up a bit though because I just want to make the quilt a 48" x 48" size. So, I reschemed it on paper.

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Friday, March 27, 2009

Finished Jacket for MiniMe




I FINALLY finished this little spring jacket for MiniMe. I think I started it the end of last summer and then got sidetracked (nothing new there!). I used a pattern and the fabric is from Sandi Henderson's Farmer's Market line. The yo-yo is also from her Ginger Blossom line. I am very happy with it. I did have to seam-rip one part of the pattern. But that was all my fault and me thinking I knew better than the directions. I was very humbled. And the arms are meant to be three-quarter sleeves. Not a mistake there!

I can post the brand and number of the pattern if you are interested. Or I can email it to you. It is down in my studio and I'm too lazy to go get it. :)

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Thursday, March 26, 2009

My Creative Space



Since my creative space is clean, I am happy to participate in kootoyoo's creative space posting. The above is a view from the doorway. I have a sewing table but this tall table and stool are working until my table is back in action. I like to listen to Pandora on my computer. The white clear bins are where I keep my felted purse patterns and mailing supplies for Stripes-N-PolkaDots, my felted pattern company. The jars on the bottom shelf are where I keep my ribbons and brooches for my purses.



Here are my shelves. I have a lot of sewing and knitting books that I'm sure you recognize. I also store all of my Interweave and Quilting magazines here. I store all of my buttons in the green ceramic holder. MiniMe made me that picture in the white frame using her little fingers and paint. And of course, my sweet dolls are sitting on the shelf waiting for someone to give them a home from my Etsy shop.



And here are my shelves for some of my stash (both fabric and knitting) as well as wrapping paper, paper supplies, stamping stuff, felting supplies, stuff for doll-making, and all of my other miscellaneous crafty stuff (glue, glitter, spools of thread, embroidery stuff, tape, inks, beads, etc.) My cutting table is usually smack dab in the center of the room. And my son usually pulls out all of the skeins of yarn that he can reach. The room is more often a disaster but that is when I'm productive! I love this room because it is ajacent to the play room in our basement. MiniMe and MiniB play away while I sew or cut fabric. I never feel too far away from them.

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Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Fingerpainting





I have been promising MiniMe that we'd fingerpaint. Surprisingly, I've had a hard time finding fingerpaints. There are many "kits" out there that will only work on specific paper so as to not make a mess on your table. I can appreciate that but there comes a time when you just want to get messy. We finally found a set but I'm still not happy with these because they're more like gel than paint. But I digress. The kids had fun and don't know the difference.

I decided ahead of time that I'd just let them go to town. MiniMe was a bit weirded out that she could touch the paint. She kept asking for a papertowel which leads me to believe I need to let these kids get dirtier more often.

At one point MiniB had paint, dog hair, Doritos powder (forgot to wipe off before he started), and boogers on his finger. Gross! See here?

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Saturday, March 21, 2009

Oh what a find!



I have been reminising about my sewing history. I learned to sew at 12. But prior to that, my mom sewed many of my clothes, baby clothes, and dolls. My mom passed away when I was 16 (actually, 19 years ago today) and I was given her sewing machine. My heart breaks to say that I no longer have it. I was young and things happen in life we regret--it was sold in a garage sale. I was headed to college and wasn't thinking of the future.

Lately I've have been flooded with memories of my mom sitting at her sewing table, threading her machine, asking me to try something on for her. I can't help feeling so sad that I didn't predict how much regret I'd have that I don't have her machine. I called my dad and asked him the year of her machine and started scouring online. I don't necessarily need another machine but it would be nice to have two. I found the Singer pictured above on Craigslist. It is exactly as I remember my mom's! And, score, it was only $15 and came with a sewing table! I should mention that we sold my mom's table too. Here's the table:



Do you think I should paint it?

As we were driving home from picking it up, I started to think again about my mom's machine. Did you see the movie, Definitely Maybe? The part of the movie I love is [SPOILER IF YOU HAVEN'T SEEN IT]....where the character April buys any copy of Jane Eyre that she finds because her father wrote an inscription in a copy for her before she died and she lost the book. One day Will finds the copy with the inscription in a secondhand store and gives it to April. What a gift! I so wish life could really work out that way. I just have to hope that maybe my mom's machine is out there somewhere being cherished and this machine I've acquired once belonged to someone who wishes they'd kept it.

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Friday, March 20, 2009

Final Finished Project



My final finished project for the week was one of my longest in coming. For the longest time (early 2007!), this Elephant has been standing in my studio waiting for a head. MiniMe endlessly asks me when I'm going to finish it. I must admit, the body by itself was cute enough for me. I don't like knitting stripes. This pattern was created by Susan Anderson. Click here to see her much cuter version.

I decided I would get this Ellie a head. Only problem was I couldn't find all of the colors because it had been so long. So this elephant has a different colored head. Oh well. I think he's just thankful to have a head period. I took so liberties and saved myself from trying to knit ears and just cut some felt ones for him. And rather than embroider eyes, I took the shortcut and glued some buttons on.

My conclusion after sticking to finishing a bunch of old projects is that I'm ready to move on to some brand new ones. And once I do, those ones will become my new unfinished projects. What can I say, my mind is always onto the next best thing!

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Thursday, March 19, 2009

Top Secrect Finished Project


You're going to have to take my word on this finished project. I joined the Socks That Rock club and members aren't allowed to show the finished project and that includes even showing the yarn. I guess that they sell the patterns the following year and part of being a member and paying dues is being able to have access to the new patterns and yarn.

I received my yarn in mid-January. I finished my socks over the weekend. The next sock package is due any day now. I wonder if I'll be able to keep up?

So again, sorry no images on this one. It's too bad because they're darn cute!

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Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Finished Project #2


I started posting about this baby here in September. Then notice how in this post in November, I write how my quilt is almost complete. This was true as all I had left was the binding. I had purchased the fabric in September, completed the quilting by Halloween and just had to bind it to have a wonderful Christmasy quilt for our family to snuggle under. Then Thanksgiving came and the entire season floored me. Once Christmas passed, I wasn't as excited to finish. But I was SO close. So, I sat myself down and hand stitched the binding. It wasn't hard and didn't take too long. I have decided that finishing is all mental. So, I present Finished Project #2:



Now I'm good to go for next year. Whew! Two FPs down, many more to go.

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Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Unfinished Project Week


I got to thinking recently about all of the unfinished projects that I have laying around. I have the ultimate intentions of finishing all of them....eventually. I am reminded of my hypocrisy when I tell MiniMe, "you should always finish what you start." So in honor of spring cleaning and wanting to clear out my studio, I committed to finishing my projects, one-by-one. It feels good. Are you like me in that you get so excited to start a project and halfway through another project entices you? I don't do that with everything, just most things I guess. There are so many projects and so little time so I dabble in everything. Lately I've felt kind of scattered though.

So, do you recall me blogging about this scarf? You'll see from my first post about it that I titled it Holiday Knitting. Who knew it would extend to 2009? Ha ha. I'm happy to say that I sat down in front of the tv a couple of nights in a row and finished this baby. So, I present Finished Project #1!



It feels so good. Will you participate in Unfinished Projects Week with me? Tomorrow I'll post about another project I picked up and completed.

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Saturday, March 7, 2009

Button Love



I am not a collector of much. But I have a cute collection of buttons. My mom used to save buttons. I have her collection and have since added on my own favorites. I don't seek out buttons but when I see some that I have to have, I buy them even if no purpose for them comes to mind.
MiniB discovered my button box and was FASCINATED. That is sweet and all but now I am finding buttons in his room and I'm a little protective of my buttons.
Aren't these cute? I'm loving the color combination lately. I'm probably excited for spring!

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Thursday, March 5, 2009

Join the Quilt Along!



I am so excited about Oh Fransson's Quilt Along. Come and join! I expect we'll learn a lot since it is a sampler quilt. I need a new project like a hole in the head. I can't resist though. If you follow Oh Fransson, you know what I mean. Who'd miss out on the chance of such knowledge? I love Elizabeth's work! Yay!

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Wednesday, March 4, 2009

My Princess



This daughter of mine keeps me laughing. Today she walked into my room batting her eyes and talking with a high-pitched "princess" voice. Her mouth looked just as pictured. She got into my lipgloss and totally thought it looked fabulous.

On a not so funny note, I got pulled over by a police officer this weekend. The officer walked up to my car and asked for all the pertinent information. My friendly and animated daughter waves and says, "Hello Mr. Policeman!" He kindly waves and nods in her direction. She then said, "Why don't you have any hair?" Needless to say he wrote me a ticket.

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Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Fabric Art Tutorial


I told you how I read about this project on The Purl Bee. I'd also seen a lot of them on FlickR. But here are pictures to guide you if you want to make some fabric art.

Begin by ironing your fabric.




Then set your fabric within the embroidery hoop and tighten the hoop and pull fabric taut. I know that there are more vintage and artsy hoops out there. I didn't take the time to look for them but I'm sure you could find some cute hoops on Ebay. You could also paint the outside of your hoops white or another color (make sure you only paint the outside so the fabric still slips between the hoops).



Then you want to cut the fabric around the hoop so that it is long enough so that you can fold the fabric around the lip of the hoop.




You want to squeeze your glue so it is on the outer edge of the hoop. I used Fabric Fusion glue that is specifically for fabric. Then press the fabric down on the glue and edge of hoop. Do this all the way around the hoop.



Set aside and let it dry. Once dry, trim the fabric even closer to the hoop.



Hang and enjoy!

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Sunday, March 1, 2009

Mystery Revealed


T he other day, I showed you some fabric swatches and said I hoped to be done with my mystery project by weekend's end. Well............





I'd seen these "swatch portraits" around and had been searching for something for this powder bath wall. It's a tiny bathroom (hence the bad lighting and strange angles of pictures). I have a hard time finding art that I like and if I do, it usually isn't affordable. Well, fabric is essentially art! I'll post my process in the next day or so. If you're just dying to find out though, I followed The Purl Bee's instructions.

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