Wednesday, August 31, 2011

WIP Wednesday #10

It’s that time of the week again…WIP Wednesday!

This week I’ve got a few more works in progress.  I’m also spending lots of time helping Emma’s teacher this week, so I don’t have as much progress as I’d hoped for, but progress of any kind is good!!

  Yesterday I finished up a simple skirt.  It was as simple as cut, fold, sew, model.  My kind of project lately!!

In Progress:
   I’m slowly beginning work again on my Summer Sampler quilt.  I’ve got the first of two six-pointed stars (tutorial courtesy of Kate) cut out and sewn.  I've got one more of these to cut and sew together before moving on to Faith’s Lucky Pieces block.

Ooh, some of those points are BAD!  I sewed this block up last night and didn't notice.  I think I'll be redoing some of those rows tomorrow!

   When Emma was in kg, a teacher friend asked me to sew up two blankies for her little boy.  He would only sleep with his blankie—no sheets and no covers, but he’d outgrown it.  She wanted 2  BIG blankies made—each would have a satiny fabric on the back.  One blanket would have a smooth minkee fabric, the other with raised dots.  They were a BEAST to sew because they were huge and everything involved with them was slippery.  Well, she called me over the weekend and jokingly asked me if I could make him a new blankie.  This one is for school though.  Her little boy is starting pre-k and he needs a nap blankie.  She bought this cute panel and satiny fabric at Walmart.  I should have it sewn and done by this weekend.  I’m considering just doing this blanket pillow-case style and then topstitching the edges…

  One of my favorite blocks in the Summer Sampler quilt-along is the Greek Cross.  And I'm not alone.  Almost everyone loved it.  To the point that Jennifer and Sarah decided to host a new QAL based on it.  They’re calling it the Across the Sea QAL since Sarah lives in Ireland.  I’m participating, but changing it up a bit.  I've had orange and blue fabrics for awhile now to make Oren a new quilt for his bed, but every time I decide on a style he doesn't like it or I change my mind.  But I’m set now…I’m doing Greek Crosses.  So, I’ll be cutting and keeping up with Jennifer and Sarah, just making a whole bunch more!!  (And yes, I’m already behind, so I’ll stay behind on this one too!!!)

Here's a mockup of what mine MAY look like...only I'll be using lots of different oranges and blues and possibly different whites.  Using one color for each was just easier to show Oren!!  ;)
   My embroidery sampler is going well.  I was cruising along until I decided the white I had chosen was too close to the color of the muslin and pulled it all.  I had to work from my very old stash since our Walmart no longer carries embroidery floss, so I settled on this darker blue.  If I had it to do over again, I'd go with a completely different color scheme, but...  I took the last few nights off from this project because my eyes were so tired at night...this going back to school stuff is hard on Mommas!  ;)

Bullion roses were new but fun.  And all of those french knots...whew!  That's going to be one fuzzy sewing machine!!
Poor, lonely Unfinished Projects that have been cast aside:
--"Sent with Love" postage stamp quilt.  It look so sad peeking out of my WIP basket knowing it's not far from being done and just needs a little love.

--Mosaic Swap quilt.  Actually, I think this one needs one more row sewn on before I can quilt it.  But I haven't touched it in like 2 months, so I'm not sure on that one.  ;)

--Fall Pops quilt.  This one goes back before blogging...  Oops!

Go check out Lee's linkup to see what she's been up to and all of the other great bloggers that link up too!  I'm hoping for a little more progress by next week...

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

MIBM on Tuesday--Seeing Red

Isn’t it funny when you come up with a great idea only to see that someone else had the same one.  Chalk it up to “Great Minds think alike” I guess.  This week for Jill’s Made it by Monday Challenge, she gave us the prompt “Red.”  We could go where we wanted with that.

I tried to think of a bunch of different crazy ideas, but then I looked over at my refashion pile and saw an old red and white gingham dress that I’ve been meaning to turn into something else.  I’ve had the dress for years (tried to find a picture of me wearing it, but couldn’t).  There’s nothing wrong with it, it just wasn’t a favorite.  The neckline was a little low, but not so low that it was easy to find a shirt to go underneath that didn’t look weird, you know what I mean?

I don't know why I look so, so serious in this pose other than I was taking these with my timer and hoping to get lucky.  Maybe I was concentrating too hard!

So…I hacked it off at the empire waistband.  Then I had trouble making the zipper work at it’s shortened length, so I just took it out too.  The skirt actually fits great without any need for closure or even elastic really, so I just sewed up the zipper opening and folded over the top and sewed a thin waistband.  It will always need a belt or to have my shirt untucked since the waist is a little loose (with no closure, it had to be loose enough to go over my hips!), but for such a simple skirt, I think the belt added a lot anyway.

So, sorry for no progress pictures, but it literally took all of 5 minutes…

And why did I mention the whole “Great minds think alike” comment…well, it’s because Jill also made a red and white skirt this week.  She also wore it with a white shirt, and she also posed out front of her house for some simple pictures.  I promise, I didn’t meaningfully copy Jill’s ideas in participating this week (even though my post comes a day later!!)

I guess it just means Jill and I are both brilliant since we have such great minds, huh?

make it by monday

Pop on over to Made it on Monday to see Jill’s awesome skirt and everyone else who linked up.  And if you’ve got something making you see red, why not link up your project, too.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Here we go

So both kids started back to school today.  I dropped Oren off outside his door and on he went to learn and have fun.  Then I spent a couple of hours volunteering in Emma's room to help her teacher get a few things done.  And now I'm home for a few hours before I go back to town to pick them up.

While I know I will be busy volunteering and running errands during the school day, I have a list as long as my driveway (and that's long) of projects I'd like to get done this school year.  I've got quilts waiting to be quilted. I've got blocks waiting to be sewn together. I've got pieces cut waiting to become blocks.  And I've got fabric sitting around waiting to be cut and then sewn into blocks.

And that doesn't even take into account all of the ideas I've got pinned, written on scraps, bookmarked in magazines and floating around in my head.

So while it's the end of August and not the end of December...I say "Happy New Year" to all Moms sending their kids back to school and hoping for the chance to get something done.

What's your top 5 to-do projects list look like?

Tuesday, August 23, 2011


It's awful quiet around here today...both of my kids are at school.  Around here we do staggered enrollment for kindergarten meaning that the kids come only one day for the first week.  Oren's day is today.  So, he'll be home with me the rest of the week and then next week we go back to normal of both at school every day.

  But for today, it is quiet here.  There's no one telling me a long, drawn-out story about what his gun built out of trios and tinkertoys can do.  There's no Scooby Doo or Phineas and Ferb in the background.  There's no drinks to pour, lunches to fix or fights to break up.  There's no swimming all day, no hugs and kisses, and smiling faces.  It's a glimpse at the next 13 years.

   I apparently surprised all of my family this morning by not shedding a tear.  I will miss my sweet kids who keep right on growing even when I ask them to slow down.  But, I know that growing means going...  I only get to keep them with me for so long before they must go out into the world and build their own lives.  I like to think of school as the beginning of that process.  It's a chance for them to learn things other than what their Daddy and I teach them.  It's a chance to make friends in their own way and deal with situations.  School is a chance to learn that the world outside your front door isn't always as nice or as loving as inside, but it's full of great people and great opportunities, too.  And those not so nice people and experiences help you grow as well...Momma just doesn't like that part as much.  School is also a trial run for me too.  They're gone from me for 6 hours a day in a world I cannot control.  I can't stand behind them and help.  I can't fight their battles for them.  I can only wait to find out how it went and support them through it all.  Sooner than I will want, they'll be grown and making their own life, calling me for support hopefully, but making all of their own choices.  This is just the beginning.

   I am proud of the children my babies are becoming.  I am proud of their abilities and their choices.  I am proud that God gave them to me to teach all that I know and love as best as I can.  And that, might just have made me shed a tear.  As my own Momma always says "My cup runneth over."

P.S.  I got the idea for the chalkboard and photo shoot from Mandy.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

One okay skirt to one super cute shirt

This is the blog post I did for Jenny during her Refashion Series.  I thought I'd repost it here, both to have it in my archives and in case anyone didn't click over.  School starts tomorrow for Emma and on Tuesday for hopefully I'll get some sewing in this week, but Oren only goes the one day this first week, so my leech may prevent me from getting much done...  ;)  Hope everyone is having a great Sunday!!

When Jenny asked me to be a part of this refashion series, I decided that whatever I made had to come from my closet.  I considered a couple of things, had a craft-fail that will soon be re-refashioned into something else, (that was Emma's lunchbox) and finally settled on this skirt right here.  As you can see in the picture, it's not bad.  It fits fine, it looks fine, it's just not WOW!  But...I'm turning it into a WOW and with minimal changing, so I could always change it back if I wanted to...even better!!

But what to do with it??  I searched refashions online for inspiration and saw this:  

Found here
And I had my answer.  I didn't even read through the tutorial, although that was just fine because when I looked back, I realized it was a link to another tutorial in French.  ;)

So here's what I did:

1.  Find a skirt at least knee length, the longer the skirt the more options you have for styling.  It needs to have side seams.  This is a cheap, polyester knit from Walmart of all places, so fabric doesn't matter.

2.  Put the skirt on inside out and flip the hem up to your shoulders to see how it will fit as a top.  The skirt's waistband becomes the bubble hem of your new top.  My skirt had a large knit waistband and it's super comfortable, but I imagine a fastened band would be fine if it feels fine to you.  You'll need to adjust the side seams to accomodate your arms, so decide how big you want the "sleeves" to be.
    On my skirt, I went for a sleeveless look, so I just left the hem intact as my shoulder seams and neckline.  then I ripped out the side seams for 8 inches.  Once I made sure I liked that look, I just quickly sewed down the already folded edges to hem up the armholes.  By using the long skirt, it gave the neckline a neat cowl-effect as well.

3.  Now here's the last step:  See how I had a kick pleat in the back of the skirt?  Well, that was a little too low in the back for me...I don't want everyone to see how I fasten my bra, so I just pinned the pleat closed a little higher and sewed along the hemline to hide the stitching.  That way the design element of the open back is still there, but I'm only showing what I'm comfortable with.  ;)

5.  And you're done.  Cute, right?  But here's the best part:  Because my skirt was mid-calf length originally, I have the option of wearing this shirt in different lengths!  I can wear it to bubble at my natural waist, 

at a drop-waist length, like a tunic, a cute dress!  

In all, it took me A LOT longer to photograph the steps and write up this post than it took to transform this boring skirt into something more fun and hip.  And with my seam ripper and 10 minutes I can always change it back if I need a long, black skirt!  

I encourage you to look around the web, look around your closet and see what you can change.  It's a quick and easy way to brighten your day and your look!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

WIP Wednesday #9

How can it already be Wednesday?  It seems like it was just last week and I had two weeks until school started...Now I've got 5 days until Emma goes back and 6 until Oren starts kindergarten.  We're on a staggered enrollment the first week for kg, meaning only 4-5 kids come each day the first week so it's less stressful for both teacher and student (and possibley teary-eyed Moms!!)  I LOVED it as a kindergarten teacher.

I'm not sure if school starting back is what's caused it or not, but my kids are stuck to me like I'm a fly trap lately, so my sewing is down to almost nothing.  Seriously, I can't even check my email without them almost touching me asking what I'm doing.  (As I type, Oren is in here telling me about his latest ship he's built out of tinker toys...)

So, this edition of Work-in-progress Wednesday won't take long.  That's for sure...

  Other than a cute dress for Emma that is completely done, but doesn't fit, nothing.   At least it will be ready next year (or the next...)

In progress:
  Summer Sampler Series Quilt--I think this one is going to have to wait till they go back to school.  Hang out fabrics, I'll be back in 6 days!!  I'd love to finish it up, but I don't think I have it in me to concentrate on paper piecing and my two leeches right now.

no progress this week...I miss you Summer Sampler!

   Embroidery Sampler--Back in the day, I used to cross stitch a lot with the occasional delve into embroidery.  I mean, if a friend got married or had a baby, I whipped out intricate samplers or scenes for them.  I'll see if I can find any old pictures, but that was back before I thought to photograph all of my projects.  Since I've had kids, I don't seem to have the patience for cross-stitch, but have been wanting to get back into embroidery.  When Bari J. from Moda fame started a new blog We Love French Knots, and offered a contest for making the sewing sampler, it seemed like the perfect time to get back into it.  The flickr group is amazingly inspiring!

Tops Needing Quilting/Untouched (for some time...):
--"Sent with Love" postage stamp quilt.  It look so sad peeking out of my WIP basket knowing it's not far from being done and just needs a little love.

--Mosaic Swap quilt.  Actually, I think this one needs one more row sewn on before I can quilt it.  But I haven't touched it in like 2 months, so I'm not sure on that one.  ;)

--Fall Pops quilt.  This one goes back before blogging...  Oops!

Go check out Lee's linkup to see what she's been up to and all of the other great bloggers that link up too!  I'm hoping for a little more progress by next week...


Monday, August 15, 2011

Make it by Monday Challenge--Dress under $10

  I haven't linked up with Jill in a few weeks, but I thought this theme sounded fun.  Dress for under $ immediate thought was to make a dress for under $10, but it could just as easily mean create a whole outfit for under $10.
make it by monday

  I knew exactly what my project would be.   Down here in the South, especially in a small town, school spirit is something you don't grow out of.  The high school football field is the place to be on Friday night and school colors are seen all over town on Fridays.  I found an old polo shirt in the back of Chris' closet in our local high school's colors.  It was his Friday shirt for a long time, but he's now moved up a size...   I decided to cut it down for Emma to give her a new dress for Fridays.

  I sewed new side seams, cut down the sleeves and re-attached them, hemmed it a little...and it still looked like she was wearing Chris' shirt.  I took everything in a little more...nope, still Daddy's shirt.  I waited till Chris got home and asked his opinion.  He didn't answer, letting me know that it looked like Daddy's shirt.  His suggestion--hang it in her closet till next year.  She'll have grown enough by then hopefully to fill it out a little.  So, that's what I did.

  But now I needed a new plan to link up with Jill.  So, I took the other approach.  I shopped our closets to make a new outfit for Emma that was free.  It will need a new belt (since I had to use Oren's), but that will be our only cost.  So, how'd I do it?

  Well, while Daddy's shirts are WAY too big for Em, mine aren't.  Mine are the perfect tunic length for little Miss Long Legs, so we threw on a shirt I never liked on me anyway, layered over a white t-shirt.  We added in some black leggings, flats, and a belt and I think she looks pretty cute!

  Emma is just beginning to really care about fashion.  She's always been very picky about what she wore, but she's just beginning to really look at what other people wear and what's in the stores.  I think its very interesting to watch her develop her own personal style and see how much influence I have on that style.  Some days--I can see myself, and other's NOT AT ALL!!

This is her attempt at a sassy face.  Which should tell you something about the  kind of sassy girl she is...

  So, here's my outfit for under $10.  Shop your closet and see what you can come up with.  And don't forget to head over to Jill's to see what everyone else has come up with too.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Ready for lunch

  Last week when I was preparing my refashion for Jenny's event, I had a craft fail that I refused to give up on.  See, it all starts with these jeans...
     I had this pair of jeans.  Just an average pair, but so comfortable and went with everything.  One day Chris took us to the big city to run into Lowes and go out to eat.  I threw the jeans on and away we went.  But as we left Lowes to head to the restaurant, Oren and I had a little accident out front.  An employee spilled a gallon of sidewalk-colored paint and instead of putting up Caution--Wet Paint signs, he chose to go back in the store to refill the paint!!  And wouldn't you know it...Oren and I went down!  I'm talking gray pedicure all they way up to my shoulder blades.  Chris and I just laughed as I in turn waited out front for a manager, was literally hosed off in the garden center and then stood through a conference called at the customer service desk in front of the store.  I was finally told they were so, so sorry, but internal affairs would have to find out if they were at fault before Lowes could do anything for me.  Really, all I wanted was some compensation for the new jeans, shoes and flip flops I was going to need to buy.  Oh, and did I mention that Oren was covered in paint too??  They did give us some plastic tarping and a box of kleenexes for the ride home...  Seriously...

Anyway, I washed the jeans and MOST of the paint came out, but there was a gray stain on the butt that was just too noticeable to continue wearing them.  So, when Jenny's request came for a refashion, I decided to dye them a dark-indigo color and turn them into a skirt.  But...after making a cute denim pencil skirt and then dyeing it, I was sad to see that the paint stain showed through!  Only now, instead of being dark like the dye, it was a lighter gray that showed up worse!!  AGGGHHH!!!

But, I refused to give up.  So, I cut the skirt apart at the seams and turned it into a lunch box for Emma.  As I mentioned last week, I made Emma's lunchbox last year based on this pattern. (Although now I see it comes with a snack bag, mine did not.)  And it worked great!  Only complaint from the whole project and using it EVERY DAY last year--it was too small and I had to cram her lunch in each day.  So, we decided that I'd make it again, only bigger.  I was going to show my new pattern pieces here and give a tutorial, but I didn't stray much from the original instructions and I felt that it wasn't right to the designer to give away her pattern.  So, I will tell you what I did differently and say that if making a bag like this is new to you, then this is a great pattern to start out with.  If you've made bags before, then you shouldn't even really need a pattern for this, it's pretty simple construction.

Please excuse the red thread coming from the E.  I thought I trimmed all the threads beforehand!

--I convinced Em to let me use this denim for her bag, but I could tell she wasn't thrilled, so I offered to jazz it up with some embroidery.  I picked a simple but graphic flower that came with my machine and embroidered each panel of the skirt and the cut the pattern pieces out based on the embroidered design.  I used red because it looks awesome, but also because I already had red and white oilcloth for the inside.
--When it came to cutting the fabric for a handle, I just used a piece of the waistband.  It's already interfaced and doubled over so it saved me a step and looks really cool.

This is the back of the lunchbox
--I also used my spare skirt panel with the paint on it to make the side pocket on the bag.  It was the panel I used for practice with my embroidery so I was able to cut it down avoiding the painted part!  (I only put on one pocket instead of the 2 called for.  We only ever used one last year and I was out of skirt!!)
--The pattern calls for using a fusible fleece or other cotton batting and interfacing to make the bag stiff.  I chose to instead use Insul-Bright as a substitute for both.  I felt that the insulated batting (used in hot pads and insulated bags) would help keep her food insulated, obviously (man that felt redundant to type), and also provide the stiffness needed to keep the bag steady.  (This may be suggested now as my pattern is over a year old, I see she says the instructions are updated...)
--I also used a magnetic snap instead of velcro to close the bag.  I used a snap last year and Emma wanted it again.  This is completely personal preference.  I just think a snap looks better and can be easier for little hands if the snap isn't difficult to undo.
--Oh, and the pattern includes an inside strap to hold a water bottle, but Em takes a big aluminum one each day, so I omitted this step.

This is the side pocket.  It's great for silverware or fruit rollups.

  And there you have it.  I LOVE it!  I think it's so bright and unique.  No one else will have a lunch box like this in the cafeteria. fixation with the perfect lunchbox is not yet complete.  This one is great, but I have ideas for truly making my own pattern.  Something more like a purse, but stil sturdy enough to stand up to a 7-year-old's ways.  I'd also like to try out some other fabric options like quilted fabric (like Vera Bradley bags), patchwork, etc...  I'd also like to play with sizes, so I could take a frozen meal or a salad or something.  I'm usually a one-and-done kind of girl with projects, but you may see some more lunchboxes in the next month or so.  I've got an itch that may need scratching here!

The inside is this red polka-dot oilcloth.  It's water resistant--BIG PLUS!!

   I'm linking this project up with my favorite party girls.  Check out my party page at the top to find great blogs that show off lots of great projects of their own and of others!!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Sneak Peek

We're under a storm cloud that won't go away...I'm talking two days of rain with no end in sight, so me and the sewing machine haven't been spending any time together as I've been trying to keep my kids busy and argument-free.  I HAVE been busy moving over a TON of my old bookmarks onto Pinterest.  I can pull up a few bookmarks, check on the kids, pin a few things, check on the kids, etc.  What do you think:

                                                                    Source: via Kelli on Pinterest

                                                                           Source: via Kelli on Pinterest

                                                                       Source: via Kelli on Pinterest

I have great taste, right?  Just kidding.  The internet is full of so many great ideas.  I could spend all day pulling them and pinning them!!  It's the getting to them and figuring out where to put them that's the problem!!

But this afternoon, I've got Oren laying down for a little while and Emma's down at the barn helping her Daddy, so I've got the embroidery machine working...check back in a day or so for the results...  Any guesses on what it might be??

Friday, August 5, 2011

Dresses for a Cause

  A few months back my cousin emailed me & asked if I'd be willing to make up something for an auction coming up in September.  Its a fund raiser for an adoption organization close to her heart.  I was glad to help and decided to whip up two little dresses.  Then of course, life got in the way (it's that orange in me...) and it's now August...

  But, they're done and (I think) they're cute.  I made two all-season-jumpers based on the tutorial from Kindershop that I downloaded eons ago knowing I'd eventually use it for something.  I figured with the auction in September in St. Louis, it would soon be cooling off and jumpers easily made the transition to fall and winter.  I used Beatrix's measurements for a 3T, but as Emma is finally becoming a size 7 in width as well as length, I'm not sure if the measurements are spot-on or not.

  Both main fabrics have been used in various projects before. Since I didn't add pockets or embroidery, I used a decorative stitch on my machine for the bodice top stitching on the brown and pink dress.  I thought it was a sweet little touch.  The bodice may or not be a Kona Cotton from JoAnn.  I can't remember.  It's a scrap from Emma's mermaid quilt.  I'm all about using every bit around here.

  The purple fabric has that little pop of red in the princess crowns that really brightens it up.  And since I used a patterned but very plain white for the bodice, I added red piping to the bodice seam.  I thought the white was too stark against the purple, but the red added just that little punch to make it work.  I also used a red zipper for this dress.  My zipper skills improve each time, and I don't find them difficult anymore, but man do I have trouble keeping the top 100% even.

  At any rate, they are done except for a final check that all threads are cut.  So, I am linking them up with a new-to-me blog.  Angie at Stitching by Starlight has just started her Finished it Friday party and I'm going to  join up this week.  Go check out what everyone else has finished up and share some love!!
I usually have trouble with vertical pictures turning horizontal on I had trouble with a  horizontal picture turning vertical...what???
  Hopefully these dresses will be used to help fund an adoption that will lead to a happy family.  Did you have any idea that adoptions can cost more than $10,000???  And that's in-country adoptions, right here at home.   I'm glad to do a small part in helping.  My main and favorite job in life is being Mommy, and if making two little dresses can someone else have that job too, then I am more than happy to help.

Finished it Fridays!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Orange, hmm...Interesting

  So, the last two days saw Chris at a workshop learning how to be a mentor teacher.  He wasn't thrilled with going as he HATES meetings of any kind and would rather just be in his classroom doing what he does, but nonetheless, he was in an workshop.

  Part of the workshop involved a personality quiz to help them learn more about themselves, as well as the new teachers they would be mentoring.  They used the True Colors test found here.  It's free and quick to do.  They then tell you a little about yourself.  I'm guessing the workshop coordinators had purchased the extensive readings that go with it because he knew more about each color than I learned.  He told me he was a Gold with Green right behind.  He said a number of the teachers in the workshop ended up with Gold on top.  He said Gold people were rule-followers, responsible, dependable, etc.

   I told him I'd take it today and I did.  There are only 5 questions.  Each question has 4 groups of 3 words each and you rate the groups from least-like-you to most-like you.  I think it should say something about my personality that I in turn agonized about which group of words best described me and then impulsively just chose and moved on.  ;)    I had trouble with some of the groupings because I felt one or two words described me but the third one did not, or that I felt I was all or none of the words.  And, yes I took the test more than once because I wasn't sure I'd really described myself correctly.  Also something to think about myself, yes??

  But in the end, Orange won out.  Blue was a close second, with Gold not too far behind.  Poor Green and I obviously do not see eye to eye because it was a DISTANT 4th!  According to the site, orange people are spontaneous and courageous.  We are hands-on learners and enjoy competition.  We also need fun and variety in our work.  Chris laughed when I told him what I'd got.  He said yesterday during the workshop he said out loud "I think I am definitely married to an orange!!"  haha  He also told me that Orange people have a tendency to have great ideas and ramrod (I prefer the word encourage) others into following their ideas, but often need a Gold to come in to complete the project.  While I'd rather not focus on the "loses focus quickly, not detail-oriented" way he described it, this is an accurate representation of me.  My idea list is MUCH longer than my accomplished list.  I am enthralled with Pinterest, knowing I will not make half of what I pin.  I set out with accomplishable goals that are eventually forgotten.  Yes, I think I am very much an Orange.  But I was glad to see that Blue and Gold came in close behind...that means I'm well-rounded, right?  I'm going with that, anyway!

  I also find it interesting that Green and Gold are similar (Chris's strengths) and Blue and Orange are similar (my strengths).  We obviously complement each other well as I already knew.  I am always trying to convince my level-headed and practical husband about some off-the-wall thing we need or should do.  He's often reminding me why said crazy notion may not be the best option.

  So, readers...what about you?  I think that as in life, crafters will come in all colors/personality types.  But I wonder if there are more of one color than another.  Are there lots of other Oranges like me with languishing WIP/UFO piles because we've moved on to the next shiny thing we see?  (Although I do limit myself on how many projects I can start at one time for that exact reason!!)  Are there many Golds  that follow all the rules and finish one project at a time with perfect corners and straight lines?  Or Greens that wholely enjoy the thought process of making patterns and figuring out how to do something?  And what about Blues?  Do you enjoy the socializing of a quilting group or a knitting circle?  Do you love to craft for others?

  Tell me what you scored and how that defines your sewing/crafting style?  I find this all very interesting indeed!

P.S.  I can't post something without a picture, so here is a preview of one of the dresses I'm working on...details on both dresses coming tomorrow!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

WIP Wednesday

Yep...another Wednesday is here so I'm talking about my Works In Progress today.  Since last week I've made progress on my Summer Sampler Series quilt, slow progress, but progress.  I've also got two dresses cut out for my cousin.  She asked me to donate something to an auction to aid an adoption organization she worked with, and I'm glad to help out.  I'm also workong on a lunchbox for Emma for school this year.  It's not like me to have so many projects at one time.  I usually like to focus on one thing, so I at least come closer to finishing it.  ;)
WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced
found here

Completed this week:  My project for Jenny's Refashion week.  I'm actually the featured poster today--go check it out!  I'll wait...................
Okay, what did you think??

In Progress:  
--Summer Sampler Series Quilt  (I'm on Block 8 of 12).  Here are my Arkansas Traveler blocks and all of my blocks together.  So far, so good!!

Arkansas Traveler blocks.  I followed Lee's tutorial.

--Dresses for the auction--I'm going with a simple jumper pattern with a straight bodice and gathered skirt.  I figured a jumper is always cute on a little girl and since they live in the midwest, they could wear it through the fall and winter with a long-sleeved shirt underneath.  Here are my fabrics.  The dresses are cut out and will be finished up tonight (hopefully!!!!)

--Lunchbox for Emma--Last year I followed a pattern for a lunchbox for Em, which she loved.  Only was too small.  We had to be judicious in fitting in all of her lunch each day.  I'm making my own pattern this year which I've got drawn out and I THINK we're in agreement on fabric, so this will hopefully be done by next week.  School starts in 2 weeks, so this one's got a deadline!

Tops Needing Quilting/Untouched (for some time...):  
--"Sent with Love" postage stamp quilt.  It look so sad peeking out of my WIP basket knowing it's not far from being done and just needs a little love.

--Mosaic Swap quilt.  Actually, I think this one needs one more row sewn on before I can quilt it.  But I haven't touched it in like 2 months, so I'm not sure on that one.  ;)

--Fall Pops quilt.  This one goes back before blogging...  Oops!

And that's it for this week!  I'm so excited and thankful to Jenny for featuring me on her blog this week.  Really, check it out, because for two weeks, she and Sarah are featuring all kinds of great repurpose, refashion ideas.  And go check out Lee's WIP linkup for all of the great projects in progress!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Summer Sampler Catch-up

 I am SOOOO behind on my summer sampler blocks!!
 I went to the beach during week 2, and then it took a week to get back on track, so I missed week 3 as well. And then with my crazy notion of making 2 of each block (which I actually really like gives me a chance to refine my talents before I move on and forget each block!) I'm even more behind since it takes me twice as long. That said, I LOVE this sampler quilt-along! It's been so neat to see traditional blocks come together in modern fabrics. The flickr pool is awesome.  I'm telling you, between google reader, flickr and now Pinterest, it's no wonder my house is a mess!!

  But I have found a few minutes to sew up some blocks.  Since I last posted about the sampler, I finished another Mosaic block.  Here are my two versions of it:

  And I'm almost caught up with week 2.  Sad, I know.
Kate posted two versions of her block Flower Garden Path. Her's looked like this:

found here
  And here are my two.  I found I'm not a huge fan of piecing incredily small pieces.  I wasn't surprised to find it as I'm not the most accuracy-oriented person in life.  And I've never been drawn to quilts with tiny pieces.  I don't believe there will ever be a Dear Jane quilt made by me, and I'm okay with that.  I can find plenty of challenges involving larger pieces!  ;)

  Next up was Faith's tutorial for the Star block involving paper piecing.

found here

I had never tackled paper piecing that I can remember, but I had read about it before and seen quilting shows on it, so I was very familiar with the concept.  I will say, this was the first block I've run into that was a bit of an issue to make with a layer cake.  See, Faith's block along with all of the others I saw on flickr used just 2 colors for the star.  BUT...I didn't have enough of any one fabric from the layer cake to do that!  Faith said each piece should be roughly 4x10...I could only get 2 from each LC square.  So, I improvised and decided my stars would be a little scrappy.  I just used 2 shades of each color instead of one.  But, I'll tell you another secret about me...I'm incredibly cheap thrifty and I kept trying to make pieces fit that weren't quite big enough.  These 2 blocks took me FOREVER!  There was quite a bit of seam ripping involved.  Again--all me, though. Faith's instructions were spot-on!
  In the end, I really like them and the process of paper piecing.  My red and blue star somehow got a little short all the way around, so I will be considering some creative sashing ideas in the next few weeks...

  My next block is Lee's Arkansas Traveler and I love it!  It's so fun and lively...another block added to "Make a quilt out of this block" list!
found here
  I'm hoping to have my two done by tomorrow so I can keep on rolling.  It's not very often I make a quilt just because I wanted to.  And it's even less often that I finish I'm keeping my eye on the prize and working till it's fresh-from-the-dryer cozy!