Friday, January 28, 2011

Giveaway winner

First off, thanks SO MUCH to everyone who entered the giveaway. I had a fun time reading through the comments and learning about your quirks. I laughed out loud several times and found myself trying to do the things some of you mentioned being able to do.

(By the way, I think the ability to raise your eyebrows independently is somehow related to whether or not you can twist your tongue. The mister can raise both eyebrows separately AND twist his tongue to the right and the left. I, however, can only raise my left eyebrow and twist my tongue to the right.)

Anyway, on to the winner!

Congrats to #25, Mimi, who said:

I'm hearing about this dreaded flu and hope it doesn't hit my family! Love the bright fabric you have chosen for your timely giveaway - we are in a deep freeze north of the Great Lakes and tiring of it!! Thanks for the chance! As for an interesting tidbit about me... I can raise each eyebrow separately!!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Two More Swaps

You can still leave a comment in my previous post for a chance to win some fabric. Click here to enter the draw.


Call me crazy, but I signed up for two more swaps...that's a total of three within a three-month timeframe. I'm so excited for these though. I already showed you my inspiration mosaic and the goodies I made for my partner in the Spicing Up the Kitchen Swap.

Here are the inspiration mosaics I put together for the other two swaps.

Urban Home Goods Swap

Urban Home Goods Swap Mosaic

The Urban Home Goods Swap consists of one main item that can be used in your home and covers a pretty broad range of items - pillows, bags, aprons, sewing machine covers, pretty much the entire gamut of anything possibly used in your home.

Make Mine Modern Swap, which was formerly Modern Swappers.

Make Mine Modern Swap Mosaic

The Make Mine Modern Swap consists of one and a half yards of designer/quilt shop quality fabric, a handmade item, and an item to decorate your sewing room with.

These are the first two swaps that I've participated in that I've actually been pretty specific with the types of things I'd like to receive. I'd really like some sort of tote bag to use for transporting sewing projects here and there. I baste all my quilts at my mom's house or my inlaws' house, so it would be nice to have a big bag to carry everything.

For Make Mine Modern, I listed specific fabric in my Flickr profile that I don't have, but would like to own. I also included specific item requests in my mosaic (pin cushion, needle case, mail organizer, box pouch for storing sewing notions, and/or fabric storage cubbies).

In past swaps that I've done, it's been easier for me to make something when my partners were specific about what they wanted. I figured I'd try that out this time instead of being vague like I was in other swaps.

I've received my two partners for these other swaps and I have a pretty good idea of what I'll be making for each of them. I hope to get started on them either this weekend or next week. I'd really like to have these done well before I head back into the office.

Friday, January 21, 2011

200+ Followers Giveaway

***Giveaway closed.***

I'm getting this posted a little later than I wanted to, but my daughter got sick this week (throwing up two-year-olds make me sad), and I've been having some serious low back pain so I've been working in bed all day yesterday and today. (Thank goodness for helpful husbands who are willing to clean up puke so I don't have to get up.)

Anyway, on to the giveaway. I have a couple fat quarters up for grabs. I'm getting tired of this blah winter weather so I pulled some fat quarters that are very sunshiny. (I haven't even been up long enough to take pictures, so you'll have to go off these images from the designer/fabric shop listings.

First up, a fat quarter of Nicey Jane Picnic Bouquet in Gold:

Next up is a fat quarter of this Modern Meadow print:

Thirdly is a Vera's Garden Vintage Pillowcase Spring fat quarter. (I don't have a picture of this one as I couldn't find anything online - remember the laid up in bed part? It's making me too lazy to take a photo.)

I'm also probably going to throw in a fat quarter of Anna Maria Horner's Little Folks Voile (Dobby) in Saffron and maybe a few other little things since I'm lame about no giveaway photos and my late posting.

To enter, simply leave a comment on this post. If you want, you can tell me some random fact about yourself, point out a great tutorial you like, or just say hi.

Here's a random fact about me: I have extra long ligaments attaching my toes to my feet so I can fold my toes over and walk on the tops of them. I know, it sounds gross, but I'm actually pretty proud of this quirky talent of mine.

You have a week to enter the giveaway. I'll pick a winner next Friday night/Saturday morning (Jan 28/29).

Oh, and please please please make sure I have a way to contact you!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

CSN Stores Giveaway Winner

Are you excited to find out who the winner of the $50 promo code to CSN Stores is?!

Congratulations to #32, Katrina, who said:

Katrina said...
I would use it towards a Yo Gabba Gabba blanket that my daughter can take to daycare for naptime.

Thanks to everyone for entering the giveaway. Remember to keep checking back for another giveaway (hint: this one involves fabric!) later this week.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Goodies for Spicing Up the Kitchen Swap Round 1

If you haven't had a chance yet, you can enter the CSN Stores giveaway by leaving a comment on this post. I'm drawing a winner tomorrow (Tuesday 1/17/11), so hurry on over.


For the Spicing Up the Kitchen Swap, the deadline to mail the items for our partners is March 1. I started and finished mine yesterday (a month and a half before the deadline and only a few days after finding out who my partner is).

BUT, don't think I'm an over achiever or anything. The real reason I finished these up so soon is that my sewing time will drastically be reduced starting the first of March. See, I've been working from home for the past three and a half years, but come March, I have to start working in the office again. Boo. There are a lot of projects I want to work on (not to mention the other two swaps I will be in between now and April and the bee I'm in this year). So I'm trying to spend as much free time sewing as I possibly can. Thankfully, the mister is very understanding and encouraging. =)

I stalked my partner for a few days, pulled out some fabric, and started brainstorming ideas. I decided to start off with an apron. My partner likes Nicey Jane by Heather Bailey (at least I'm pretty sure she does), and I just so happened to have a fat quarter of this floral print and some of the green stripes. I half-followed this tutorial. Thanks to Traci for making one and pointing out the tutorial.

Spicing Up the Kitchen Swap Reversible Apron Side 1

I opted to make the apron reversible, so I pulled a yellow fat quarter from my stash that matched the Nicey Jane fabric (I'm sadly lacking in the yellow department).

Spicing Up the Kitchen Swap Reversible Apron Side 2

Next up, I made a couple of patchwork towels. I found some really soft bamboo cotton towels and added a band of various fabrics to the bottom. Simple, but cute.

Spicing Up the Kitchen Swap Patchwork Towels

I thought about stopping there (since the swap expectations stated that they didn't want us to get overwhelmed by trying to come up with too many items for the swap), but I had a few leftover pieces from the towel and put them together into a little mug rug. If my partner isn't big on mug rugs, she has a couple places in her kitchen for a little mini quilt wall hanging.

I added a little bit of stitchery because my partner said she liked that too.

Spicing Up the Kitchen Swap Mug Rug/Wall Hanging

So here's all the loot. I hope you like it, partner. I'm planning on sending this off tomorrow. It has quite a way to travel, so I'm hoping it makes it to its new home safely.

Spicing Up the Kitchen Swap Goodies

{Sew} Modern Monday at Canoe Ridge Creations
Fresh Poppy Design

Friday, January 14, 2011

Giveaway to

**Giveaway closed.**

As I mentioned in my last post, I was getting close to hitting 200 followers on this here blog and to celebrate I wanted to host a giveaway. As luck would have it, CSN Stores contacted me to offer a gift certificate to one of my readers. The good part for you is that I will be hosting two giveaways!

Have you browsed through any of CSN Stores' websites before? They pretty much have everything under the sun for purchase, like TV stands and other modern furniture as well as thousands if not hundreds of thousands of other products. I've purchased from CSN Stores in the past. Last year, I was in the market for a pancake griddle to see if I could improve my pancake making skills (my kiddos love pancakes), and CSN Stores had this huge unit for a good price. I use it all the time, and not just for pancakes. It works great for scrambled eggs and hashbrowns too.

For this giveaway, CSN Stores is offering a $50 gift certificate* to any of their online sites. To enter, simply leave a comment on this post and make sure I have a way to contact you. I'll close the giveaway sometime Tuesday and then draw a winner. If I can't get in touch with you, I'll draw a new winner.

*Sorry, but this giveaway is open to US and Canadian readers only.

Once this giveaway closes, I'll have some fabric to give away later next week.

Good luck!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Liebster Award

Over the past week, I found a lot of new (to me) blogs to read courtesy of this little award:

Today, I was lucky enough to be nominated for the award myself by sweet Felicity Quilts.

In the spirit of spreading some Lieben (or "love" in German), I want to nominate a few of my favorite little blogs too.

  1. First up is Andi at Jane of All Crafts. I love this girl! She's funny and personable and her blog is filled with great stuff: sewing, crafting, organization, decorating, and more.
  2. Next up is Traci of Stolen Moments. I love everything Traci makes! Her aprons have been bouncing around in my head for the last few weeks as I've been thinking about the Spicing Up the Kitchen Swap. Her Sherbet Pips quilt makes me want to get my hands on that fabric as soon as I can. And her free motion stitching?! Holy crap she's good!
  3. Emily at Mommy's Nap Time has a very admirable love of gray in her quilts and I'm inspired to use more of it in 2011. I "met" Emily when I was trying to figure out if I got in the fourth round of the Pillow Talk Swap. She was super helpful when I hounded her with questions. Now we're in the Sew Beautiful Bee together and I'm excited to work with her on each of our quilts.
  4. Last, but certainly not least, is Rachel of Creative Quilt Girl. I met Rachel last March when I joined the Salt Lake Modern Quilt Guild. Rachel started up this Utah chapter and has been such a great admin for our group. She's got mad quilting skills too. I especially love her New Wave quilt.

Thanks again for the nomination, Felicity. And thanks to all of you who take the time to read this here blog. I've had such a great time blogging this year and sharing my quilting progress with you.

Oh, and stay tuned. I'm getting close to 200 followers so I think a giveaway (or two) is in order!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

The blocks are done!

I did it! All 25 blocks for the front of my Far Far Away 2 Kitchen Windows quilt are done. I laid them out on my living room floor to get an idea of how the finished quilt will look. I am so loving this quilt. It may just become my new favorite.

FFA2 Kitchen Windows Quilt Progress

I made three more blocks for the back. I can't decide if I want to orient them like this (all vertical) or if I should lay them out similar to the front.

FFA2 Kitchen Windows Quilt Progress

I am waiting on the background/sashing fabric to arrive so I can finish the quilt. I looked at a Kona Color Card on Saturday and with the help of some of the girls in my quilt group, I decided to go with Kona Stone. I had to order a lot of it since I doubled the size of the quilt from the pattern and I'm using the Stone on the back. But, the Fabric Shack didn't have enough yardage so I ordered what they had (they have good prices on Kona solids), and then ordered the rest of the yardage from Sew Fresh Fabrics on Etsy.

I'm really tempted to buy the plum colorway of this line now and figure out another project for it. I have loved working with this fabric. The weight is wonderful (80% cotton, 20% linen). It'll be nice to see how it feels all finished and washed up.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Some [not so] interesting facts about me

Andi over at Jane of All Crafts tagged me the end of last week to list 15 facts about me. I haven't had time to work on this until today, but I'm finally getting around to it. We'll see how many I can come up with.

At our Sewing Saturday, Leigh mentioned that I don't share that much personal information on my blog so I thought this would be a good way for you to get to know me a little better.

  1. I am the youngest of six kids, with a span of 17 years between me and my oldest sister. My mom taught me to sew when I was 10. Her mom taught her when she was 10. Since my mom was a tad bit older when she had me, she had a lot of sewing years under her belt when she taught me. If only I had paid better attention back then...
  2. I started quilting in January 2010. I bought my first "designer" fabric New Year's weekend. Up until that point, I had no understanding of designer fabric and couldn't see how anyone in their right mind could spend $8.00 or more on a single yard of fabric. Oh, I was so naive.
  3. Most of my siblings sew. There are five of us girls and one boy. My brother sews just as well, if not better, than the rest of us.
  4. My mom has sewn for a few companies over the years, including a furniture company and a puppet company. She's pretty much a rock star. She sewed all of my high school dance dresses, her own wedding dress, the dresses the mothers wore at my wedding, and this beautiful blessing dress for my daughter. I don't sew clothes (except a skirt or two), but my mom can sew anything under the sun. She really is amazing!

    My sweet daughter when she was three months old.

  5. I have lived in Utah my entire life. And that's not a bad thing. I'm a real homebody and living within close proximity to my parents and in-laws is wonderful.
  6. Speaking of my in-laws, the mister and I both grew up in the same town, but our paths didn't cross until we were in 9th grade.
  7. We met playing soccer on a co-ed team through the city. His dad was our coach. We played all through high school on that same team.
  8. I was too afraid to try out for my high school soccer team, which is probably the biggest regret of my life. I think I would have made it as I had played on different comp teams with the girls on the team.
  9. The mister and I dated our sophomore year of high school and then were "just friends" our junior and senior years. After high school, he served a mission for our church for two years, came home, and asked me out again. Five months later we were engaged, and three months after that we were married. That's probably crazy to many of you, but we'd already known each other for six years.
  10. I've never traveled outside the US. I've been to several states, and have had my passport for five years, but I've never been out of the country. I so want to travel to Europe.
  11. I studied art history in college. My high school art history teacher really instilled in me a love of art and inspired me to study it in college. He had us write a list of things we must see before we die. I've only seen a couple of them. Someday...
  12. I also studied interior design in college. I wanted to be a designer until I took a business design class and decided that it was not for me. I got my English/Technical Writing degree instead.
  13. I love to sing. I took voice lessons when I was 14, but quit. I also used to play the clarinet and the piano. Oh, and I loved crocheting around baby blankets and making Swedish weave blankets. And playing soccer. I don't really do any of those things anymore. This brings me to #14.
  14. The mister and I consider ourselves "90% people." We start a lot of projects and get most of the way finished, but for some reason always find ourselves running out of steam before the project is completely done. Or, we get really into something, but only do it for a while. Quilting has helped me a lot with this because once I finish quilting a quilt, there's no way I'll leave it unbound. Hopefully my time as a 90% person is almost over. I just need to figure out a way to translate what I can do quilting into my regular life. I'm pretty sure I'll be a quilter the rest of my life.

I think I'll stop there because I like having even numbers of things. For those of you who stuck around that long, thanks. I hope you learned something new about me.

Sewing Saturday #2

On Saturday, I made the hour drive to meet up with the gals in the Salt Lake Modern Quilt Guild for a day full of sewing, fabric talk, and food. The hour drive is totally worth it to me to be able to hang out with these talented ladies. (It's even worth it every month for our show & tell and demo meetings.)

I forgot to take my camera, but if you'd like to check out who was there and some of the projects we worked on, head on over to Kati's blog for some photos. Happy Monday!

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Another giveaway you won't want to miss

I know I'm probably decreasing my chances of winning, but I have another giveaway to tell you about. Angela of Fussy Cut (formerly Raggedy Owl) is giving away some awesome fat-eighths. Check them out. Seriously.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Kaelin's AWESOME giveaway

I first saw Kaelin's blog during the Pillow Talk Swap. She pumps out some pretty amazing things. She's having a giveaway on her blog that you DON'T want to miss out on. Head on over and check it out.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

FFA2 Kitchen Windows Progress

As of last night: eight down, 17 to go.

Progress on FFA2 Kitchen Windows Quilt

The pattern calls for 12 blocks, 3 columns x 4 rows. I'm increasing the size to 25 blocks, 5 columns x 5 rows. The final quilt should finish somewhere around 82 inches square. That's a nice big quilt. Maybe I'll increase the size of the border to make it big enough to fit my queen bed in case I want to alternate between this one and my All Star 2 quilt.

Progress on FFA2 Kitchen Windows Quilt

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Finished Monopoly Mixtape Quilt

I finished this Monopoly Mixtape quilt a couple days ago. I used Elizabeth Hartman's Mixtape Quilts II pattern (for purchase here). I initially planned on making the Favorite Songs layout for a 47x47 quilt. Since I decided to make the quilt at 9 at night, I opted to leave out the sashing and just sew the 6-inch blocks into rows and columns. That way, I had a finished quilt top by the time I went to bed. Omitting the sashing left me with a 36x36 quilt.

Finished Monopoly Mixtape Quilt

As this is for a new little baby-to-be, I wanted to try quilting with a flannel backing to make it softer. I thought it would be really shifty, but it was surprisingly the same as with a cotton backing.

Monopoly Mixtape quilt back

I like how the quilting adds another type of texture to the flannel.

Quilting on flannel backing - detail

I still need to work on getting a consistent stitch length as I'm quilting. For some reason, I just want to move the quilt fast and I have a hard time slowing down.

To save time, I trimmed the backing to about an inch and a half and then turned the edge over and then over again to self-bind the quilt. I did this a few weeks ago on a quilt my brother-in-law asked me to bind for his wife for a surprise Christmas gift. The corners didn't turn out as well as I would have liked on that one and I wanted to see if I could figure out how to miter them properly. I think it worked well this time. It certainly helped that the flannel I used wasn't shifty.

Mitering self-binding flannel

I think the quilt came together nicely and I think my friend will like it. She's having a girl, and since it's her first, she's really excited for all things pink. I'm not a huge fan of "baby pink" so I thought I'd add a little brighter pink to her nursery.

The only unfortunate part of this quilt is that I finished it before making my practice dresden plate. I think that flower would have looked so cute sewn onto the back of the quilt.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

I'm really starting to hate this winter light for taking photos.

The mister has complained year after year about how much he hates the winter months for photography. I didn't really understand what he meant until this year. In the early summer, he showed me how to use his Nikon and I think I got the hang of taking decent pictures outside so I could photograph my quilts and other projects. But now that the weather has changed and the light has gotten darker (the snow doesn't help either), I'm finding myself resorting to taking pictures inside with the flash. Plus, I've had a killer cold the last few days so my laziness has won out in the photography department. Anyway, that's why the following photos aren't that great.


I'm in my first virtual quilting bee this year, the Sew Beautiful Bee. January is Cherie's month and she requested Dresden Plates. I hadn't made them before and opted to make a practice block to make sure I got everything right. I haven't decided what I'll be doing with this block. Kati had a great idea of keeping all the practice blocks for each month and then putting them together in a sampler quilt. I really like that idea, but I used leftovers from the baby quilt I finished yesterday so I'm not sure how well it will blend, color-wise, with the other practice blocks I make. I've toyed with the idea of turning this into a mini quilt for My Favorite Little Quilt Swap, which is currently in its second round. (The deadline is January 31.) Or, I can always turn it into a pillow or something to go along with the baby quilt. I dunno. We'll see.

Dresden practice

Here's Cherie's finished block, using Soul Blossoms. I ended up using a blanket stitch to attach the flower to the background fabric and wish that I would have just used a straight stitch. I used a straight stitch on the circle and like how that looks better than the blanket stitch.

Dresden plate for Cherie

I've been anxious to finish my Far Far Away 2 Kitchen Windows quilt. I got all the pieces cut and the blocks laid out.

Kitchen Windows Layout

I decided to use Kona white for the window panes because I think it adds enough contrast to the muted color palate of the FFA2 fabrics. I really like how Ashley at Film in the Fridge used white to frame her FFA2 quilt and opted for the same contrast in mine. I also saw Lee's Lattice quilt today and I'm really thinking of scrapping the Kona ivory I was planning on using as the sashing and getting some Kona stone instead.

Kitchen Windows Block 1

Kitchen Windows Block 2

Two blocks down, 23 to go.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Celebration of Life Pillow

Six years ago on December 31, 2004 my sweet nephew, Caleb, passed away from medulloblastoma. He was 8 months old. Every year, the mister's brother and his wife have a Celebration of Life gathering on New Year's Eve. Caleb is always on my mind, but especially during the holidays. This year, I wanted to make a pillow for my sister-in-law just to let her know that we've been thinking about and praying for her and her family.

When I made the pillow for the Pillow Talk Swap, my sister-in-law mentioned that she loved the wonky star and the elephant I embroidered on the back. Her favorite colors are blue, purple, and green, so I used some Verna, Hope Valley, and Nicey Jane fabrics with those colors. I also used this pillow to practice my free motion quilting (my skills need lots of work). I used some contrasting vintage thread that my mom's friend gave me. It was on a teeny wooden spool and it was surprisingly smooth to quilt with.


I used a heavy-weight embroidery floss for the elephant and her baby. It almost feels like the crochet thread that you use to crochet around flannel baby blankets (whatever that's called - help me out someone).


I think I mentioned that my sister drew the mama and baby elephant for me. We're actually in the process of making a few sets of embroidery patterns to sell in our very own shop! I'll have more information as we get closer, but let me know if you're interested in some fun [modern] embroidery patterns!


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