Friday, June 29, 2012


I was all excited at how much progress I've made on my Bottled Rainbows quilt, especially since it has to be done by August for my quilting guild's little wrap up for it. So far I have totally finished 14 blocks, and 3 have scraps to be sewn on (they are glued down so I used them in the picture below). Yes, I know how to count. I know that's 17, not 16. When I first got the fabrics, I had one called blue jay in the mix which was not exactly my favorite color. It was not a blue I use much and I was afraid I wouldn't have enough to make a block, so I pulled together some leftover jade from my Riley Blake Christmas quilt and made another block. Now it looks like I will have enough to do the blue jay one too. My first instinct was to make a second extra and turn them into pillow shams. But today I placed them all on my queen sized bed to insure they would fit and, low and behold, I need another row deep to make it fit.

I was planning on a border just to make sure the drop was enough to cover the sides (I have a sleigh bed and the mattresses show), so I measured to see if the border would be enough. I need approximately 8 inches more to get the drop I want on both sides, and 8 inches is not enough to complete the top to bottom. In fact, with 8 inches added to the top and bottom, it would not quite touch the headboard or footboard. If I decided to cover the pillows with the quilt instead of having the pillows on top of the quilt, I would definitely need another row. So, in my infinite insanity, I have chosen to create 3 more blocks. So now instead of being within 3 of being done, I am within 6. Just when you think you're closing in on a finish line. But I really do think it will be worth it. It will be plenty big and the border will give it a bit more that can either be tucked in at top and bottom or used to cover and tuck pillows. Plus, if it shrinks any in the wash, it will be worth it to have it bigger.

I am also hard at work being a pattern tester. I finished the book side of the "READ" bag and started the letters too. So far the pattern is very well written. Hopefully I will finish soon and can review it all together, but until then here's a sneak peak...

Yeah, I don't know if it's because I've been working on the BR quilt but my 'neutral' ended up being a bit more colorful than originally planned. But I think I'm going to like it more colorful anyway. Hope your weekend is looking promising. We finally do our first read thru for Seussical tomorrow morning so I'm excited!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Judge Not...

Okay, so I noticed that Lori posted her "messy" sewing area because Amy at Amy's Creative Side challenged everyone to do it. Dare I? I dare. It's bad. I have to tell you now. If you can't handle it, just turn away. I won't judge you. Just don't judge me and my GREAT BIG MESS!!!
First off, my sewing room is in the basement. I'm really rethinking that one, but anyway, I have to admit that it stays like this more often than not. I do try to straighten it up once in a while, especially when we 're having company, but I'm usually making stuff so everything seems to stay out more than it should.
Let's enter my sewing chamber!!!
Immediately to the right is my design wall and the door to the extra bedroom. I have a keyboard that stays up, especially now with the play coming up. You can see my stack of BR blocks there to the left.
If you turn immediately to the left, I have a huge messy work area.
My husband got me this great craft armoire years ago. I loved it because everything could be closed up inside it and it just looks like a nice piece of furniture. Ask me how often it stays closed...nada, never, zippo! It has a slide out work table where my machine sits, and I use a craft table hubby bought me to extend the table outward. My rolling cart of scraps is there on the floor.
On the back wall I keep a small book shelf where my fabric is supposed to live. It doesn't stay there though. It sort of spills over. I have a crate on the floor there full of batting scraps. There's a fat quarter bag on top filled with FQs. And there is always something on the ironing board!
My mess spills over into the extra bedroom because I use the bed there to sample placement for blocks. Right now my red and white hexie is on it, as well as a BR block and in the back there are two quilt tops and my Carpenter Wheel blocks.
There's also a desk in there where I tend to pile things as well; some Kona solids in a box, a just emptied basket, and some Innocent Crush pinwheels.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

*****Support an Independent Fabric Store and Vote!*****

I got an email today from Birch Organic Fabrics in California. They are trying to get a $250,000 grant from Chase and LivingSocial. In order to even be considered, they have to receive 250 votes. Wanna help? Go to this link.
When you get there, click in the lower right hand corner where it says log in and support. You log in through Facebook. When you get to the next page, look up Birch Organic Fabrics in California. Give them a little support. We need to give all the support we can to small fabric businesses. I see too many of them shutting down, going out of business.
And here's their online store if you're interested!

Monday, June 25, 2012

Getting Through Monday

I know it's Monday, but I've actually been making some progress. Got my three Granny Squares done for quilt guild tonight...
(keep one, donate one for a charity quilt, and one goes in the pot; names go in for each person who brought one and whoever's name is drawn gets all the ones in the pot)

and I have made great strides on finishing Bottled Rainbows. So far I have 10 completely done. I have some greens...,
some pinks and a red...,
a couple of blues...,
and some oranges.
I think I have 4 more that are completely glued down, just needing to be stitched. I also have my Kona solids in papaya and blush cut and ready to send for Jane's layer cake solids swap. Now, if I can just get to the post office.
I also decided to throw out a little sneak peak on one of the most recent Mystery Round Robin blocks I just worked on. I was excited because there were pinks and someone added a yellow so I got to add something that tied those colors together.
I'm having a lot of fun with this swap. I can't WAIT until October when I get mine back and I get to see what the others did to my block.

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Somewhere Working on Rainbows!

I'm finally getting my copy of Free Motion Quilting by Angela Walters! I ordered this a while back with an Amazon card I got for Christmas, but it was only just released. Amazon sent me a little head's up last night that it was on it's way! Angela has a little blog called Quilting is my Therapy. Definitely check it out. It's a good place to see and be seen!
I've been working hard on Bottled Rainbows! I have 7 completely done, 3 need some pieces, and all the rest are completely glued down ready to sew.  I had some jade that I had plenty of pieces for so I went ahead and made an extra. I'm probably going to end up doing one more so I can make pillow shams out of the two extras.

Friday, June 22, 2012

The Spoils of Wars...Cupcake Wars, That Is!!!

My neighbor invited me and mine to go with them today to Serenbe, a sustainable green community about 30 minutes from us. I have never been, though I have heard a bit about it. They have a great farm and they sell their fresh produce at a market held every Saturday. We, however, had other plans today. They were doing an outdoor production of Alice in Wonderland. It was SOOO wonderful! You took a long stroll under the trees through the forest to this little spot where they did the play.
My neighbor's kids, she, and I all wore hats but my daughter is not a hat type person. Nor is she a dress person (going through a "fighting puberty all the way" stage right now!).

As we entered the area, the players were dressed in Pulcinella type attire and standing around aimlessly.

That's our group down in front of the staging area. All the girls decided to pile onto one picnic blanket leaving my son to have his own blanket. Sorry it's blurry; I overprocessed how small to make the picture and only then realized I didn't save the original!

Alice and her crew of merry players. In this version, the rabbit has stolen Alice's heart and she must find him/her to get it back.

Alice shrinks after "Drink Me". There was some poetic license due to where it took place and their limited ability for special effects; I really liked that part of it myself.

Alice meets the caterpillar (hence all the extra, um, 'legs'!).

Tweedledum, Tweedledee, the White Rabbit, Alice, and the Queen of Hearts.

They had a tea and cake afterword for those who came to see the play. You could stay and visit with the actors which would have been great, but we had another idea...

How could we pass up cupcakes from the Blue Eyed Daisy when they just won Cupcake Wars? THIS is my kind of 'spoils of war'!!!

And to top it all off, we did a little drive through town to check out the beautiful homes. Guess which one I want...
It's the HGTV green home located right in Serenbe. Just gorgeous.
I would have loved to have seen the inside but it's $25 a tour. $175 is bit much to take a bunch of kids through a house!
I hope you guys are having a great Friday! Now that I'm home, it's back to the sewing room. I've cut 10" squares out of one Kona for the solids swap, and I started the second color, but I have to finish.

**Update already!**
My neighbor sent me a tag on FB where our crowd was the largest audience yet for Serenbe Playhouse! They even posted a picture of us all. I used an online photo editor to circle where we were sitting. The kids are up front and my neighbor friend and I are in the back.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

WiP at the Pool!

Well, that's what it feels like, anyway! We've been staying at the pool a lot this week. It keeps the kiddos happy and outside which works for me. It also keeps me away from my sewing machine, which doesn't work for me. I HAVE been sewing in the morning so I finished getting all my Bottled Rainbows blocks prepped and ready so I don't have to keep doing a few at a time before working on them. What was that you ask? When have I been getting the cleaning done? Who let you in this party?

Anywho! What do I have going on this week? Well, still waiting on my second Kona solid to arrive via mail so I can cut it up into 10" squares for Jane's swap. I have papaya and blush pink.
I have my Bottled Rainbows all stacked up and waiting while I finish a second orange.

I also volunteered to be a pattern tester for Michelle over at CityHouseStudio for this cute little bag. I have been dying to try out quilting letters. I can't decide if I want to quilt them or applique them. Either way it's adorable. Gotta get started on that one soon too. Mitzi reminded me that I also need to have 3 granny squares made for Monday's quilt guild meeting. I totally forgot but luckily they come together pretty quickly.

Still no word on when Seussical practice starts but I think it's going to be fun!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Standing Solid(s)

I am participating in Jane's Kona solid swap. It's a layer cake swap and you will either come away with 32 different colors or 64, depending on whether you joined one group or 2. I joined 2 so I will have 64 different 10" Kona squares to play with. It got me wondering exactly what I planned on doing with all these colors, so I decided to come up with some ideas. I started a Quilts for Layer Cakes board on my Pinterest and I also have one I planned out already which may be what I end up doing.
I have been doing a bit of sewing. I whipped up a bag for hubby's father's day goodies based on Jeni's tutorial. I had to make mine a bit bigger so I improvised. It's about 17 inches across and about 17 inches high.
I had some tool fabric from a scrap bag I bought from Pink Chalk Fabrics a while back. I know it almost looks pink, but the sides were a muted red fabric, also in the scrap bag. I used kite string which I braided as the pulls.
There has also been some progress on Bottled Rainbows. I finished the dark blue, I've started setting up another orange, and I made two more quilt blocks (minus the batting).
I am figuring out that I do not have enough Cyan. Help, Mitzi!
Yeah, it's looking kind of sad. But it will get there!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Stressed OUT!!!!!!!

Okay, so they told us at Seussical callbacks last night that they would try to have a cast list sent out by 2:00 today. It is now almost 5:30 and my neighbor and I are stressed to the hilt. She has been assured that her daughter is in it but we're not sure what she's cast as. I was told last night by someone that has done plays at this theater that the director used the phrase "WHEN we start practices" last night, not "IF" so he seems to think we are all in doing something. We just don't yet know what that is. I'm really not sure what the psychology is about holding out on sending out the cast list unless they are trying to send everyone to the hospital for stress related stomach issues, but I'm still waiting.

"Just keep swimming, just keep swimming, what do we do, we swim!"

Just got the word...I am the Mayor's wife in Seussical! Very cool. I'm excited. And a little nervous. But it will be a lot of fun!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

WiP: Where Horton Interferes with Progress

We had a busy weekend around here. Well, it wasn't so much the weekend itself as it was Monday. A friend's daughter (who also happens to be one of my daughter's friends) wanted to try out for the community theater's version of Seussical, but had never done an audition. Her mom brought her over Friday and I worked with her a little on her piece for the singing part of the audition. Then she ended up spending the night over here the next night. Sunday was okay, but by Monday the chaos started again. The kids had swim class, then VBS last night. After dropping them off, I decided to go to the Seussical auditions myself (I may regret admitting that on my blog if I don't get a part!). I had been goofing around with the song "Oom-pah-pah" from Oliver! and ended up doing that. They had us read and do a bit of a dance routine as well. We'll see how it all turns out. My neighbor does a lot with this theater and one of his daughters has started getting parts there as well. She auditioned and read for the baby kangaroo from Horton Hears a Who. I read for Mayzie. I wasn't as familiar with that story line.

***Update: Just got my email for a callback! That will be Wednesday night so I'll have to let you guys know how that works out afterward!***

There actually has been a little sewing in between all this as well. My kids have been getting buttons at church for the summer so I made them both lanyards to keep them on.

I've also been working on Bottled Rainbows. I have 5 in my finished stack, and three other blocks made and in my "to be finished" stack.

I've actually got the blue tacked on and it's sitting on my machine ready to get finished.

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Saturday, June 9, 2012

No Parking Baby!

No parking on THIS dance floor! I've been doing some moving and grooving on the sewing machine...on anything I'm supposed to be sewing? Well, ..... a little!

So far I have finished 4 BR blocks and I'm working red (it's actually on the sewing machine. And, yes, I started another project. No, I have absolutely no idea why except that it floated through my head! I recently purchased a jelly roll of silver Bella from Wondrous Woven Fabrics (they're going out of business) to use with my yellow, aqua, and gray charm swaps I picked up in a charm swap over at Craftbuds (yes, I did two charm swaps over there).
I decided to use them to make the Granny Square quilt my quilt guild member, Judy, did. She put them on point and grouped them into 4 before sashing. I can't wait to see how this one turns out.
And then I've been doing some slow work on an old UFO.
I've been making white hexies while we're at swim class. Maybe one day I'll finish...

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Giveaway at Shape Moth!

Looking for a sweet giveaway and a new place to shop? Joanna over at Shape Moth is hosting a massive giveaway by Patchwork-Oase, an online shop with patterns, fabrics and notions. They are having this giveaway to promote the opening a new online store at There will be 10 prize giveaways...yes, ma'am I said 10! Just check it out here at Joanna's blog. Have a great day and good luck!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

WiP...A Whole New Bag!

Looking for a Pay It Forward? Please check out Pam's here. She hasn't had any response for it as of yet, but is excited about the process.

I've been planning this for a couple of weeks but when I saw Purse Palooza out there, I made myself wait before making it. It got me all motivated! My first bag endeavor for the month is a new beach bag! Check it out!

This is from a free pattern over at Reanna Lily Designs. I used the polka-dot fabrics from a charm swap I participated in with Lindsay over at Craftbuds back in January. I was a little worried that it might be a bit overwhelming but I really love how it turned out. I used solids on the sides with polka-dotted pockets for both sides. I kept one side pocket whole and divided the other into sections.

I used muslin on the inside just to keep it basic. And (though my FMQ is not great) I wrote 'beach' on the both sides. This thing is huge. It's got two large beach towels in it for the picture but it could hold at least two more easily which is perfect for us. And it's just in time for swim lessons!

I also am up to 3 on my Bottled Rainbows. The orange and red blocks are made; I just have to put the scraps on.
Linking up to Lee's!

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced   Ellison Lane Quilts

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Working and a Living..Living and a Working!

Well, working at crafting anyway! I've been working hard on a project for the Purse Palooza, and I finally got back to my Bottled Rainbows blocks. I've "finished" 3 so far and have 2 more ready to set up.
This is petal, lime and lagoon in Kona. Now, I have a question. I wanted mine to be a little different cause I know of at least a few people in my quilting guild doing this quilt who are doing theirs with more design in the actual placement of the scraps. I'm not good at that so I was thinking about going back and doing some FMQ (sort of) on some of the bigger scraps that need a little help staying down anyway. So I started with lagoon.
Some extra stitching around white randrops...

some extra squares...

and a Pac-man like path through one of the fabrics. Here's my issue. Because I did it in the color of the block, you can't see it. You have to be right on the block to see the extra stitching. My question is it worth it to do extra stitching if you can't even see it? Also, should I have done the center stitching in white so it would stand out more? I'm just not sure it's even worth it to do, though it will help with holding the larger pieces down in the long run.
My other idea was to actually stitch in between the scraps with the blue thread, almost like it was meandering through the piece, but I'm not sure I like that either. There's not much room on some blocks. Yet ANOTHER idea was to wait until they are all put together and free motion some vines or something in a rainbow variegated thread onto the solids, letting it meander throughout the quilt top, only on the solid colors. I don't know. Not sure what I think about that either. I need help. :)