Friday, September 28, 2012

Sewing + Yoga + Poetry = ?

Back in the spring I started going to yoga classes at my gym fairly diligently. You know, because I needed an activity that WASN'T sitting down / stationary, like my job is and like sewing is and like pretty much everything else I do is!

Anyway, occasionally the gal who teaches the class will read us a poem from her little book of yoga poetry. Generally the reading will have something to do with one of the poses we did that today. While we didn't do this posture today, the poem really struck home.

Sutra Hasta Majariasana
"Threading the Needle"

Untangling a knot
that is my life
the knot becomes my teacher.
Gathering the threads into one,
unraveling the closed-up space
a glimmer of light
surfaces between strands.
The needle that is sharp
at dawn
might be broken by dusk.
The thread that is straight today
doesn't know
it will be knotted tomorrow.
The knot
that is tangled today
could be woven into gold
ten years from now.
That is why
I thread the needle,
honoring the odds
steadying my arms
softening my breath
working the knot,

If you're interested, this is a video showing you how to do the posture that the poem is referring to. :)


Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Shopping suggestions

Don't have a heart attack, but yes indeed, this is me blogging two days in a row! WHOA!

I'm very excited to be playing the role of sewing mentor very soon! The gal I take yoga from at the gym is having her second little boy in a few months, and we're going to make a quilt for him! She picked out this bundle from Fabricworm:

Vikings! How cute is that?? I can't wait to see it in person.

My folks have decided to come for Christmas, so I figured it's probably best that I make something for them as well (which really means something for my mom, since I'm pretty sure my dad's not huge on interior decorating). My mom pointed out several blogger bundles from Pink Castle Fabrics that she likes - unfortunately, most of them are out of stock!

They do have Hawaiian Sunset in stock:

And she also liked the Sea Glass Bundle and Summer Blooms (both out of stock!)...But I'm looking for a few more options. Where do you shop for pre-put-together FQ bundles that aren't necessarily from the same fabric line?

I may go with the Sea Glass Bundle - but rather than get the bundle, just get a couple prints, since I already have a TON of the Salt Air collection...hmmm....

Monday, September 24, 2012

Serenade for Matilda

I recently finished up another commissioned project - for the same coworker that got the last one! She asked for something girly with butterflies for her granddaughter, Matilda. Kate Spain's Serenade line seemed to fit the bill quite well, so I paired it with one of the gray Konas and went to town! I had a good time with this one - small and quick but very satisfying!

Before I get to photos - Fresh Squeezed Fabrics is having a contest where, if you get enough people to repin your favorite fabric bundle on Pinterest, you can WIN the bundle! I aimed low and went with a $15 bundle of Bella, so I need 15 repins - help! :) Check out my pin here, and repin to help me win! Check out the details to win your own bundle here.

On to photos!

There's my attempts at artsy quilt photography. Except that last one, where my leg got in the way. Whoops.

The pattern for the quilt is from the Moda Bake Shop - very fun/easy way to use charm packs, particularly ones with prints that you'd really like to feature. I think I might use this for a couple more charm packs I have, especially those where I have some yardage from the line too (like Little Apples or Guising, where I got matching solids).

Thursday, September 13, 2012


I'm a very happy gal right now. I just sold another one of my quilts to a coworker. Now, I'm no fabulous Etsy salesperson, making a ton of money on each quilt or anything like that, but I figure as long as I cover the cost of materials, I'd probably make the quilts anyway for fun, so my time doesn't really need to be paid for at this time.

Anyway, the latest finish that I've sold is this one, which I last blogged about on my big fat WIP post.

Here it is, all finished and on our bed for scale (it's a futon, which is roughly full-size - and sorry they're Instagram photos, it's the only way I can make myself take any these days!):

I called this one my cross-hatch quilt. I started it similar to a jelly-roll-race quilt, but cut it into pieces and used those as "blocks," which I sashed together in alternating directions.

This also marked my first attempt at free-motion quilting! The results weren't fantastic, but the whole thing definitely seems more feasible now, and with practice, I'm sure I could become okay at it. I mostly did straight-line, stitch-in-the-ditch quilting, but used these little swirlies across the big berry-colored, otherwise-plain section in the middle. 

And a close-up of the fabrics. They were mostly Joann red tag or remnant choices. The back is flannel, mostly teal with a stripe of barely-polka-dotted-pink across the center.

Overall I'm really pleased with the result, happy to have another quilt finished and out into the world, and excited to have a little more fabric money in my pocket!

Friday, September 7, 2012

Gilmore Girls Reading List

So my dear friend Dianna, who has moved away to go to graduate school, and I both seem to have found this list (probably via Pinterest - follow me, here!). It is a list of all the books that Rory is seen reading in the TV show Gilmore Girls. We are considering having a long-distance readalong of some of the books! I've separated out the ones I've read (only 45, I'm not a very good English degree-holder, am I?!) so that we can compare and figure out where to start. ;)

Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank
Autobiography of a Face by Lucy Grealy
The Awakening by Kate Chopin
Beowulf: A New Verse Translation by Seamus Heaney (perhaps not this version, but some version)
Bitch in Praise of Difficult Women by Elizabeth Wurtzel
Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
The Canterbury Tales by Chaucer (not in their entirety, though)
The Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger
Charlotte’s Web by E. B. White
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon
Daisy Miller by Henry James
Daughter of Fortune by Isabel Allende
Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller
Empire Falls by Richard Russo
Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton
Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes
Girl, Interrupted by Susanna Kaysen
The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
Hamlet by William Shakespeare
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J. K. Rowling
A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius by Dave Eggers
Iron Weed by William J. Kennedy
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë
Leaves of Grass by Walt Whitman
The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold
Macbeth by William Shakespeare
Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris
Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides
My Sister’s Keeper by Jodi Picoult
Nickel and Dimed by Barbara Ehrenreich
Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck
Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens
One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovitch by Alexander Solzhenitsyn
The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
The Raven by Edgar Allan Poe
Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare
The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd
Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen
Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers by Mary Roach
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
Vanity Fair by William Makepeace Thackeray
Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë

Angela’s Ashes by Frank McCourt
Atonement by Ian McEwan
Catch-22 by Joseph Heller
The Crimson Petal and the White by Michel Faber
The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America by Erik Larson
House of Sand and Fog by Andre Dubus III

1984 by George Orwell
Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay by Michael Chabon
An American Tragedy by Theodore Dreiser
Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
Archidamian War by Donald Kagan
The Art of Fiction by Henry James
The Art of War by Sun Tzu
As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner
Babe by Dick King-Smith
Backlash: The Undeclared War Against American Women by Susan Faludi
Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress by Dai Sijie
Bel Canto by Ann Patchett
The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath
Beloved by Toni Morrison
The Bhagava Gita
The Bielski Brothers: The True Story of Three Men Who Defied the Nazis, Built a Village in the Forest, and Saved 1,200 Jews by Peter Duffy
A Bolt from the Blue and Other Essays by Mary McCarthy
Brick Lane by Monica Ali
Bridgadoon by Alan Jay Lerner
Candide by Voltaire
Carrie by Stephen King
The Children’s Hour by Lillian Hellman
Christine by Stephen King
A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess
The Code of the Woosters by P.G. Wodehouse
The Collected Short Stories by Eudora Welty
The Collected Stories of Eudora Welty by Eudora Welty
A Comedy of Errors by William Shakespeare
Complete Novels by Dawn Powell
The Complete Poems by Anne Sexton
Complete Stories by Dorothy Parker
A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole
The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas père
Cousin Bette by Honor’e de Balzac
Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky
The Crucible by Arthur Miller
Cujo by Stephen King
David and Lisa by Dr Theodore Issac Rubin M.D
David Copperfield by Charles Dickens
The Da Vinci -Code by Dan Brown
Dead Souls by Nikolai Gogol
Demons by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
Deenie by Judy Blume
The Dirt: Confessions of the World’s Most Notorious Rock Band by Tommy Lee, Vince Neil, Mick Mars and Nikki Sixx
The Divine Comedy by Dante
The Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood by Rebecca Wells
Don Quijote by Cervantes
Driving Miss Daisy by Alfred Uhrv
Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson
Edgar Allan Poe: Complete Tales & Poems by Edgar Allan Poe
Eleanor Roosevelt by Blanche Wiesen Cook
The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test by Tom Wolfe
Ella Minnow Pea: A Novel in Letters by Mark Dunn
Eloise by Kay Thompson
Emily the Strange by Roger Reger
Emma by Jane Austen
Encyclopedia Brown: Boy Detective by Donald J. Sobol
Ethics by Spinoza
Europe through the Back Door, 2003 by Rick Steves
Eva Luna by Isabel Allende
Everything Is Illuminated by Jonathan Safran Foer
Extravagance by Gary Krist
Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
Fahrenheit 9/11 by Michael Moore
The Fall of the Athenian Empire by Donald Kagan
Fat Land: How Americans Became the Fattest People in the World by Greg Critser
Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas by Hunter S. Thompson
The Fellowship of the Ring: Book 1 of The Lord of the Ring by J. R. R. Tolkien
Fiddler on the Roof by Joseph Stein
The Five People You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom
Finnegan’s Wake by James Joyce
Fletch by Gregory McDonald
The Fortress of Solitude by Jonathan Lethem
The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand
Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
Franny and Zooey by J. D. Salinger
Freaky Friday by Mary Rodgers
Galapagos by Kurt Vonnegut
Gender Trouble by Judith Butler
George W. Bushism: The Slate Book of the Accidental Wit and Wisdom of our 43rd President by Jacob Weisberg
Gidget by Fredrick Kohner
The Gnostic Gospels by Elaine Pagels
The Godfather: Book 1 by Mario Puzo
The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy
Goldilocks and the Three Bears by Alvin Granowsky
Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
The Good Soldier by Ford Maddox Ford
The Gospel According to Judy Bloom
The Graduate by Charles Webb
Great Expectations by Charles Dickens
The Group by Mary McCarthy
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J. K. Rowling – read
Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad
Helter Skelter: The True Story of the Manson Murders by Vincent Bugliosi and Curt Gentry
Henry IV, part I by William Shakespeare
Henry IV, part II by William Shakespeare
Henry V by William Shakespeare
High Fidelity by Nick Hornby
The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire by Edward Gibbon
Holidays on Ice: Stories by David Sedaris
The Holy Barbarians by Lawrence Lipton
The House of the Spirits by Isabel Allende
How to Breathe Underwater by Julie Orringer
How the Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr. Seuss
How the Light Gets in by M. J. Hyland
Howl by Allen Gingsburg
The Hunchback of Notre Dame by Victor Hugo
The Iliad by Homer
I’m with the Band by Pamela des Barres
In Cold Blood by Truman Capote
Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence and Robert E. Lee
It Takes a Village by Hillary Clinton
The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan
Julius Caesar by William Shakespeare
The Jumping Frog by Mark Twain
The Jungle by Upton Sinclair
Just a Couple of Days by Tony Vigorito
The Kitchen Boy: A Novel of the Last Tsar by Robert Alexander
The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
Lady Chatterleys’ Lover by D. H. Lawrence
The Last Empire: Essays 1992-2000 by Gore Vidal
The Legend of Bagger Vance by Steven Pressfield
Less Than Zero by Bret Easton Ellis
Letters to a Young Poet by Rainer Maria Rilke
Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them by Al Franken
Life of Pi by Yann Martel
The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis
Little Dorrit by Charles Dickens
The Little Locksmith by Katharine Butler Hathaway
The Little Match Girl by Hans Christian Andersen
Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
Living History by Hillary Rodham Clinton
Lord of the Flies by William Golding
The Lottery: And Other Stories by Shirley Jackson
The Love Story by Erich Segal
Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert
The Manticore by Robertson Davies
Marathon Man by William Goldman
The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov
Memoirs of a Dutiful Daughter by Simone de Beauvoir
Memoirs of General W. T. Sherman by William Tecumseh Sherman
The Meaning of Consuelo by Judith Ortiz Cofer
Mencken’s Chrestomathy by H. R. Mencken
The Merry Wives of Windsro by William Shakespeare
The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka
The Miracle Worker by William Gibson
Moby Dick by Herman Melville
The Mojo Collection: The Ultimate Music Companion by Jim Irvin
Moliere: A Biography by Hobart Chatfield Taylor
A Monetary History of the United States by Milton Friedman
Monsieur Proust by Celeste Albaret
A Month Of Sundays: Searching For The Spirit And My Sister by Julie Mars
A Moveable Feast by Ernest Hemingway
Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf
Mutiny on the Bounty by Charles Nordhoff and James Norman Hall
My Lai 4: A Report on the Massacre and It’s Aftermath by Seymour M. Hersh
My Life as Author and Editor by H. R. Mencken
My Life in Orange: Growing Up with the Guru by Tim Guest
The Naked and the Dead by Norman Mailer
The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco
The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri
The Nanny Diaries by Emma McLaughlin
Nervous System: Or, Losing My Mind in Literature by Jan Lars Jensen
New Poems of Emily Dickinson by Emily Dickinson
The New Way Things Work by David Macaulay
Night by Elie Wiesel
Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen
The Norton Anthology of Theory and Criticism by William E. Cain, Laurie A. Finke, Barbara E. Johnson, John P. McGowan
Novels 1930-1942: Dance Night/Come Back to Sorrento, Turn, Magic Wheel/Angels on Toast/A Time to be Born by Dawn Powell
Notes of a Dirty Old Man by Charles Bukowski
Old School by Tobias Wolff
On the Road by Jack Kerouac
One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey
One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
The Opposite of Fate: Memories of a Writing Life by Amy Tan
Oracle Night by Paul Auster
Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood
Othello by Shakespeare
Our Mutual Friend by Charles Dickens
The Outbreak of the Peloponnesian War by Donald Kagan
Out of Africa by Isac Dineson
The Outsiders by S. E. Hinton
A Passage to India by E.M. Forster
The Peace of Nicias and the Sicilian Expedition by Donald Kagan
Peyton Place by Grace Metalious
The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde
Pigs at the Trough by Arianna Huffington
Pinocchio by Carlo Collodi
Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk Legs McNeil and Gillian McCain
The Polysyllabic Spree by Nick Hornby
The Portable Dorothy Parker by Dorothy Parker
The Portable Nietzche by Fredrich Nietzche
The Price of Loyalty: George W. Bush, the White House, and the Education of Paul O’Neill by Ron Suskind
Property by Valerie Martin
Pushkin: A Biography by T. J. Binyon
Pygmalion by George Bernard Shaw
Quattrocento by James Mckean
A Quiet Storm by Rachel Howzell Hall
Rapunzel by Grimm Brothers
The Razor’s Edge by W. Somerset Maugham
Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Memoir in Books by Azar Nafisi
Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier
Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm by Kate Douglas Wiggin
The Red Tent by Anita Diamant
Rescuing Patty Hearst: Memories From a Decade Gone Mad by Virginia Holman
The Return of the King: The Lord of the Rings Book 3 by J. R. R. Tolkien
R Is for Ricochet by Sue Grafton
Rita Hayworth by Stephen King
Robert’s Rules of Order by Henry Robert
Roman Fever by Edith Wharton
A Room of One’s Own by Virginia Woolf
A Room with a View by E. M. Forster
Rosemary’s Baby by Ira Levin
Sacred Time by Ursula Hegi
Sanctuary by William Faulkner
Savage Beauty: The Life of Edna St. Vincent Millay by Nancy Milford
The Scarecrow of Oz by Frank L. Baum
The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Seabiscuit: An American Legend by Laura Hillenbrand
The Second Sex by Simone de Beauvoir
Secrets of the Flesh: A Life of Colette by Judith Thurman
Selected Letters of Dawn Powell: 1913-1965 by Dawn Powell
A Separate Peace by John Knowles
Several Biographies of Winston Churchill
Sexus by Henry Miller
The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
Shane by Jack Shaefer
The Shining by Stephen King
Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse
S Is for Silence by Sue Grafton
Slaughter-house Five by Kurt Vonnegut
Small Island by Andrea Levy
Snows of Kilimanjaro by Ernest Hemingway
Snow White and Rose Red by Grimm Brothers
Social Origins of Dictatorship and Democracy: Lord and Peasant in the Making of the Modern World by Barrington Moore
The Song of Names by Norman Lebrecht
Song of the Simple Truth: The Complete Poems of Julia de Burgos by Julia de Burgos
The Song Reader by Lisa Tucker
Songbook by Nick Hornby
The Sonnets by William Shakespeare
Sonnets from the Portuegese by Elizabeth Barrett Browning
Sophie’s Choice by William Styron
The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner
Speak, Memory by Vladimir Nabokov
The Story of My Life by Helen Keller
A Streetcar Named Desiree by Tennessee Williams
Stuart Little by E. B. White
Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway
Swann’s Way by Marcel Proust
Swimming with Giants: My Encounters with Whales, Dolphins and Seals by Anne Collett
Sybil by Flora Rheta Schreiber
A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens
Tender Is The Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald
Term of Endearment by Larry McMurtry
Time and Again by Jack Finney
The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger
To Have and Have Not by Ernest Hemingway
The Tragedy of Richard III by William Shakespeare
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith
The Trial by Franz Kafka
The True and Outstanding Adventures of the Hunt Sisters by Elisabeth Robinson
Truth & Beauty: A Friendship by Ann Patchett
Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom
Ulysses by James Joyce
The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath 1950-1962 by Sylvia Plath
Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe
Unless by Carol Shields
Valley of the Dolls by Jacqueline Susann
The Vanishing Newspaper by Philip Meyers
Velvet Underground’s The Velvet Underground and Nico (Thirty Three and a Third series) by Joe Harvard
The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides
Waiting for Godot by Samuel Beckett
Walden by Henry David Thoreau
Walt Disney’s Bambi by Felix Salten
War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy
We Owe You Nothing – Punk Planet: The Collected Interviews edited by Daniel Sinker
What Colour is Your Parachute? 2005 by Richard Nelson Bolles
What Happened to Baby Jane by Henry Farrell
When the Emperor Was Divine by Julie Otsuka
Who Moved My Cheese? Spencer Johnson
Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf by Edward Albee – read
Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West by Gregory Maguire
The Wizard of Oz by Frank L. Baum
The Yearling by Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings
The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion
A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Bon Voyage!

Dianna from Polka Dots and Pastries has expressed some dismay that I don't post more often - hopefully now that she is leaving, off on a great voyage across the country, I will be inspired to post more about my crafting so that she can keep up with my projects. ;)

And even though this is not exactly a great photo of me, it does show off two completed WIPs, at least a little!

The girl smiling is NOT me... but that leg and the skirt ARE mine! Haha! My flowers are now finished,with only a touch-up appointment to go, and the skirt, made out of that lovely chair print, is one I finished!

I managed to cross something off my mental to-do list - getting my machine cleaned! - at Cathy's Sew and Vac here in Chico. They recently moved, and even more recently became home to a local quilt shop, that had a yard of the chairs on sale for something like $4.50! How could I resist!! In fact, it was tough not to get the print in the dark purple, the light purple AND the red!

Anyway...the photo itself is from dear Dianna's going away party, and you can see more photos of me in her photos on this blog post. Good-bye, friend - have a fantastic adventure on the east coast!! :)

Wednesday, July 11, 2012


So it's been a dog's age, I know, but I swear I've been busy. I've been motivated to make a good list of my WIPs by a friend who's looking to buy a handmade quilt for her daughter's birthday... so here's what I've been working on!

Granny squares quilt: I'm really proud of how this one has turned out thus far. I love the colors, because they're both outside of my comfort zone but make me very happy. The fabrics for the front are almost entirely from scrap packs I bought from Fabric Shoppe! The back includes some leftovers from the front, which is extra fun. (I think so, anyway!). Just have to baste, quilt, and bind this one.

Granny Squares Front
Granny Squares Back
"Cross-Hatch" quilt - started as a jelly roll race style quilt but didn't turn out as I intended, so I turned it into a bunch of strips that go in different directions. Sort of. Look at it and you'll get it, LOL. The first one is basted and ready for quilting. The backing is mostly teal flannel with a broad stripe of white across the middle.

CrossHatch, almost done!
I have a second one meant to be the same style, I just haven't gotten fabric to use for the sashing yet, so it's still in strips/squares.

CrossHatch, not yet assembled
Half Moon Modern Four-Patch: I love this one, I just don't really have a place for it in my house. There's gray sashing at the top, like you can see across the bottom. I don't have backing picked out for this one yet.

Half Moon Modern Four-Patch
Fruit Basket Sixteen-Patch: Fruit Basket? What? I don't know. There are fabrics with lemons and cherries on it, and I think maybe apples, too. More Fabric Shoppe scrap packs led me to this one. Not really my style, but I do like the way it looks (even if the sashing is admittedly uneven, as I now see). I don't have backing fabric picked out for this one, either.

Fruit Basket Sixteen-Patch
Rainbow Stripes: I really like this one. These are all charms I got from the bagillions of charm swaps I've been in, and I have at least enough of rainbow-colored charms to make up another quilt just like this. I'm thinking purple flannel for the back of this one. The white is flannel as well.

Rainbow Stripes Front
Dots-and-Stripes Stripes: These strips will make a quilt just like the Rainbow Stripes one, except there will be seven strips, so it will be a little wider. The strips will be alternating rows of polka dots and stripes. I also have another set of polka dot squares that will be made into yet ANOTHER quilt just like this one.

Dots and Stripes Strips
Cut squares: Okay, so admittedly I got a little carried away with the Fabric Shoppe scrap packs. A couple of the packs I got ended up with two pretty nice sets, one of boy prints and another of girl prints. I think the squares are 3" (I'm not at home so I can't measure, and it's been a while!). They're definitely smaller than charm squares. Not sure where I'm going with these, but I love the combinations. :)

Boy Squares
Girl Squares
Fat Quarter Sets: I've got a few sets of fat quarters from the same collections - the first and last were lucky winnings, the middle was a set I got on sale from Sew, Mama, Sew!'s sale section.

Lizzy House's Guising Collection
Jane Dixon's Primitiva Collection
Aneela Hoey's A Walk in the Woods (also have a little more of this!)
Charm Squares: Okay, I promise, this is the last thing! I was part of a red-orange, green, and blue swap not too long ago. The squares I got back are 5" by 10". I don't know what my plans are for these, but we could come up with something, right?? ;)

ROGB 5x10 Bricks

Phew! I look way busy, huh? ;) I'll have to get my butt in gear and actually *finish* some of these things!

Friday, June 1, 2012

Matchy Matchy Polka Dotty Swap - Sign-Ups!

So I'm hosting my first swap! Sign ups start Friday, June 1, and will continue until we hit 28 spots full (whether that's 28 people or 4 really ambitious ones, it doesn't matter to me!). This unfortunately is open to US participants only. Please check out the swap Flickr group for more information!

SIGN UPS ARE FULL! Thank you so much to everyone who's signed up - can't wait to get everything going! If you missed out, do not despair - if this goes nice and easy it's likely I'll host another one again in the future (I'm thinking maybe stripes?? ;)

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Tattoo photos

Really this post is nothing more than a dump of photos I've taken of my own leg. LOL. Can't wait - going back next Wednesday to get started on color!

Derek, from Victory Tattoo here in Chico, said I won the biggest bandage of the week award. No prize was awarded, unfortunately. You can check Derek out on Facebook, too.

It's me, so of course there's got to be a stack of fabric in a photo, right?? ;)

And one with a kitty, too! Hi, Molly!

Come back tomorrow for something else that's fun, too! ;)

Friday, May 25, 2012

Old Navy Sample Share - Shorts!

It is possible to have a crush on a website? Cuz I have a little bit of a crush on Crowdtap, a site that allows you to interact with brands, where you give them feedback on their products in exchange for free stuff and gift cards (I always redeem my points for Amazon cash!).

The latest Sample Share I got to participate in was for Old Navy's shorts collection. I got coupons to go with a friend of mine to try out any shorts we wanted (shorts being anything that is too short to cover my stupid looking knees).

I think between the two of us we tried on most of the different pairs! The first ones I tried were the Printed Canvas Shorts, which were super cute (unfortunately you can't see HOW super cute they were, since I'm a terrible photographer - trust me, there was a neat print on them!). I didn't like the way they were SO short - I really wish that Old Navy offered patterns like these on their longer shorts, though. Probably the best part of the photograph is that you can at least sort of see how high on my leg my tattoo "WIP" comes - a little bit above my knee! Love it!!

Our Old Navy was recently remodeled, and these fun labels were in the dressing room - I just wish that the middle one said "Try It On!" or something like that, so I would definitely-for-sure remember which pieces I hadn't tried yet!

Anyway, the shorts on the left are the Perfect Khaki Shorts (5" inseam) and the ones on the right are the Ultimate Bermudas with stretch, which I wasn't able to find on their website. The problem with both pairs was that the legs were too tight on me in my regular size, but when I went up a size, the waist was WAY too big.

Because of that little bit of disproportionality, I ended up choosing the Relaxed Chino Shorts (9 1/2" inseam) in Rifle Gray.

I like them because, as you can juuuust barely see, they have buttons at the waist. These buttons go with little tabs that remind me of the tabs on my BDU pants from the Air Force - you can make the waist just a little bit smaller with them! Hooray! Unfortunately, I still had to go up a size for my thunder thighs I mean powerful legs to fit properly...and as such, will have to adjust the positions of the buttons. Oh well - better that than legs that are suffocating, right??

My friend (who's apparently pretty camera shy!) had similar thoughts about most of the shorts. She liked the chinos I got, but she's a bit shorter than me so they were way too long on her! She picked the Cuffed Twill Shorts (7" inseam) in Tree Frog - she liked the length, the front accent pockets, and the fun color!

Overall - definitely a fun afternoon! It was a great break from work, as we hit up the nearby KFC for chicken afterwards. Delish!

Thank you so much, Crowdtap, for another great pair of summer shorts from Old Navy! Click the Crowdtap link to sign up and you too could have a chance at free stuff! ;)

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

WIP Wednesday

Well I've been horribly neglectful, yet again, of my readers. Things have been crazy - the end of every school year always is, even though all I do is help my husband get through graduate school. The good news is, though, that it's over and done with for a few months... or at least the part where he actually goes to class is. There's always something going on with his experiment, or figuring out how many and which classes he'll be teaching and all of that... and throw in the remodeling that'll be starting up again pretty soon and we'll be just as busy, but in different ways.

Anywho, it's WIP Wednesday over at Freshly Pieced and I'm linking up for the first time in what seems like ages! Despite Jeff's being busy I've had plenty of time to work on various projects... and this morning I actually remembered to snap (poorly lit, very amateur-ish) photos of them, so here we go!

In northern California it gets ridiculously hot. Like, 100+ degrees for days at a time, and all you want to do is sit in a vat of ice cubes naked.

But at least it isn't humid, like back home, where you have that "just got out of the shower" feeling ALL DAY LONG.

I also have a friend, who has an ADORABLE little girl who just turned four. Last summer I made some simple skirts for her. She was visiting her mama here at work the other day, and I asked her if she'd like me to make some more, since it's juuuust starting to get toasty in the afternoons. She requested dogs, cats, and a horse. Well, the only request I could fulfill with my stash was dogs, but hopefully the monkeys will do! These are almost done - just have to have her try them on to make sure the waists are the right size, then finish closing the waistband.

I've been drowning in squares recently. As I think i've mentioned before, I love the "Surprise in My Mailbox" stash builder bundles from Fabric Shoppe - I've ordered, uh, more than I care to admit from her, and the surprises have always been pleasant! Excluding the red, which is some Kona I was lucky enough to score from the Joann remnant bin, all the fabrics in this quilt came from those surprises. I just finished adding the borders to this quilt top within the last couple of weeks. (Should've taken some close ups - sorry!).

More squares - these time of the granny variety! I absolutely LOVE this block and have at least two more of these quilts planned. These squares also came from my Fabric Shop bundles. I have to pick a border color for it, still, but I've ordered "leaves in blue" from the Fruit Slice collection for the back - I think it will be a nice complement to the front.

Here's a close-up of the front. I love the sorta retro feel it has to it! I'm definitely looking forward to finishing this one, though I'm not entirely sure where it's going to end up yet!

Well...probably my FAVORITE WIP that I've started over the last month has own leg? Yes indeed. I have been thinking of this tattoo for a while now, and finally went to see Derek, the owner of Victory Tattoo here in Chico, to get the process started. Two hours for the outline, and probably two more sessions after that (one for leaves, the final for flowers) to get the whole thing done. It continues up around the outside of my knee and ends a few inches up my thigh. :)

What my new ink means, though, is that I need to be able to show it off, right? So in addition to making skirts for my friend's girl, I've made a couple for myself! (Okay, well, one so far, but I have a bunch more cut out). I thought this was a great way to use this yard of Echo, and I like how the stripes I added down either side give it a bit of a sporty feel, like a tennis skirt without any of the exercise/running/sweating. ;)

And there you have it! A long catch-up catch-all kind of post for WIP Wednesday. What have YOU been working on??

Friday, May 4, 2012


Well, I had all of two folks enter to win the traveling stash, and random number generator thinger picked #2, so I'll be contacting Kim in just a moment for her address! Hooray, Kim!

Charm About You

In other news - have you heard of the Fugly Fabric Party? No? WHY NOT!? It's pretty awesome. I'll be offering up some fugly fabric here on the 8th of May, and this time, you'll have the chance not only to win a fugly from me but also some definitely NOT fugly fabric from the link party's sponsor, Prints to Polka Dots! Stop by Lucy's blog at Charm About You for more details - then go dig through your stash to find stuff to swap! :)

Have a fantastic weekend!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Traveling Stash Giveaway!

So I love getting mail. Who doesn't!? I've been in a TON of swaps lately, whether in big groups for charm squares or in smaller diads (love that word) for FQ/charm pack swaps - I swapped some Heather Ross Mendocino that I knew would be more appreciated elsewhere for a charm pack of Hullabaloo, and sent a Pezzy FQ all the way to England (Hi Cheraldine!) in exchange for a different FQ (for what it's worth, when you're doing the customs form, a FQ of fabric in an envelope weighs 2.1 oz. I guessed 2 ounces, so that was pretty darn good!

When I'm not bothering my local postal workers, I HAVE been sewing, honest! I've finished up all 18 granny squares I had cut, and now they live in a nice stack that looks something like this:

Someday Instagram really needs to release an iPad version so my quick photos turn out better! Anyway...who makes 18 blocks for a quilt? What the heck, right? I'll need to find a couple more fabrics that go along with the theme so that I can get to an even 20 for a 4x5 layout. My squares started at 3.5", so the squares are huge! I'm excited to get this one finished. I think it might end up for sale someplace - probably at my office. I have a coworker with some college-aged daughters, maybe she'll buy it for them. ;)

Now, onto some bigger, potentially more-comment-generating news? I won a traveling stash! Are you familiar with that? Basically it's a medium flat rate box stuffed full of things that other quilters/sewists didn't want anymore - patterns, orphan blocks, templates, notions, and, of course, fabric!

Admittedly the fabric in this box isn't the best - it's Joann quality, including what I added. But on the plus side, there is a variety of sizes - what was in it was yardage, and I added a bunch of FQs and FQ-ish pieces - and there are a ton of patterns! This is a great box if you're into appliqued patterns, books, and the like.

Here's what was in it that I took out:

Some yardage in basic colors, a book, and a magazine. It was interesting to look through the book - of Mennonite Quilts -  and see ones that look awful familiar - there's a photo in there of a quilt that looks similar to the Made in Cherry QAL. Nothing new under the sun, I suppose! ;)

So after I took out my bits, here's what was left:

Like I said, a TON of patterns - this box is HEAVY with books! All those big pieces are pretty good sized chunks of yardage. There are also some orphan blocks, charm squares, a package of labels, and a wrist pincushion thingermabob.

 And this last one is what I added - a whole smattering of various fat quarters, a couple orphan blocks of my own, a dresden plate template (still in packaging, I think it came in a set of FQs I picked up someplace...?). I'll probably also throw in a couple MORE patterns!

Sooooo....wanna win the stash?

The rules are as follows:

-Be an active blogger.
-Post about receiving and the giveaway on your blog in a timely manner.
-You may take anything you like from the box. Just replace every item with comparable items equal to the amount taken.
-Ship the box to the next person in a reasonable amount of time.
-Due to the amount of postage shipping is only within the USA.
-Add your name/blog address to the log so we can keep track of where it's been - and find some fun new blogs to follow in the process!

So, that's it! Leave me a comment and I'll draw a name on Friday morning. Unfortunately, this is US-only - sorry. :( If you could comment about suggestions for what to do when you don't plan a project, um, at all, and end up with a weird number of blocks (18, maybe??), that'd be even better.

Good luck, everyone! :)