Friday, May 30, 2014

New York Beauty Kitchen Mat

Another Friday, another finish! It's a New York Beauty Sunrise kitchen sink mat. Sadly, it was one of those projects that got lost in translation somewhere between my head and real life. This was actually my friends idea but I took it and tried to save her another WIP.

I started with Janice's pattern and took it to the print shop and had them print it at 200%. The pattern was huge! I envisioned a sunrise where the first bit of light is almost a white-yellow that pops out of he darkness then spreads to pinks and oranges.

I used some AMH, Violet Kraft, Heather Ross, Sandi Henderson, a few others, and, of course, some Sunprint from Alison Glass. Every sun needs some Sunprint. I also had to include some clouds, birds, and bees to go along with the morning sun. The morning sun coming up over a mountain just like I see it every morning.

I debated with myself over the background for a long time about whether or not to use 1 solid. As you can see I decided to go with a dark background at the edges and to get lighter as it reaches the middle where the sun is coming up. If I were to do this again I would modify the pattern a bit so the background color transitions of the spokes matched up with the color transitions of the flying geese.

I am not sure if it was experience or the larger pieces but it was much easier to make the curves line up with this one than the first New York Beauty I made.

Then, there was my nemesis...the quilting! I think my quilting age is about 18 months so it looks like an 18 month olds "writing". I started by outlining the sun's rays and doing some straight line echo quilting. Next I followed the arc of the geese. Lastly I tried to get fancy and make some little flowers in the grass on the mountain. That didn't work out so well with very uneven stitches so I took those stitches out. I ended up doing a butterflies path pattern, at least that is what I am calling it. :)

I took Rachel's advice and used a towel in the middle instead of batting.  I think that  will soak up water more than batting would and make it more useful as a kitchen sink mat.

Linking up with Crazy Mom Quilts for Finish it Up Friday. Have a great weekend!!

Friday, May 23, 2014

Vintage May: Strawberry Fields Forever

May is a very busy month full of out of traveling to basketball tournaments for my younger son so going into the month I knew sewing wise, it would be smaller projects for me. One of my favorite sewing series during May is Vintage May hosted by Craftiness Is Not Optional and Skirt As Top. I love vintage clothing styles and it has been too long since I have made any kids clothes so I really wanted to sew up a vintage inspired outfit during the course of this series. Actually, I have 4 vintage patterns I would like to sew up but I am time poor and am happy for the one I made.

Known fact: if there is strawberry fabric, I will buy it, so I did not stand a chance  against this  this fabric made by Birch Fabrics called Every Day Party. I ordered the fabric before I had decided on a pattern and was barely able to squeeze out what I needed. I think the fabric has a vintage vibe to it and wanted to use it for my Vintage May make.

I usually prefer old vintage patterns because of their details and nice finish {and they are already cut out most of the time} but when I saw the Lotta dress pattern from Compagnie M I wanted to make it! I love the collar detail, the back closure options, and my favorite detail is...

...the different pocket options. We all know that the pockets are the kids' favorite detail in a piece of clothing.

There are a few strawberry fields open this time of year where we live and my Strawberry girl loves strawberries so that is where I decided to go and get some pictures of her new dress. I am sure the guy at the stand thought I was a little crazy but my girl and I had a fun together talking and laughing. 4 year olds ponder things like what would it be like if she got to fly into space and whether or not a rocket would be required or what would it be like if she had wings. I love the little peaks she gives me as to what she thinks about. She is always entertaining that is for sure!

I almost opted for the zipper closure in back but in the end chose the button placket to give the dress a more vintage feel. I had some vintage buttons in my stash but not 3 of one color so the buttons are a bit mismatched. I wanted the buttons on the front of the dress to contrast since they are a decorative element rather than functional and decided on navy blue.

I had never sewn a Compagnie M pattern before but it came together quickly and I like that the PDF came with a seam allowance or you could choose to print the pattern without the seam allowance if you wished. If I had blocks of time to sew it would probably take about 3 hours, but since I sew in 5 minute increments it took me about 5 days. I think choosing buttons was the toughest decision. I will be sewing this dress again as my daughter loves it and so do I.

I am not sure how many strawberries my girl ate while I took pictures but there were a lot of stems on the ground and her face and dress were covered with strawberry juice by the time we left. It rained on our way to the field and then on our way home so I was thankful we didn't get rained on while we were there.

After you take your daughter to the strawberry field you have to make strawberry jam, of course!

Both of my littles enjoyed mashing the berries.

We made a simple freezer jam recipe which does not require you to seal the jar. It  lasts up to a year in the freezer but we will eat it up long before then.

My last little finish for the week is a little needle book. I had a mini charm pack so I pieced some squares together then used a scrap of linen for the inside. A bit of wool felt for the page and this project was complete.

It was a good, busy week! If you live here in the U.S. I hope you enjoy the 3 day weekend!! Linking up with Crazy Mom Quilts for Finish It Up Friday :)
......and linking up to Summer Sewing Linky Party at Project Run and Play :)

Monday, May 12, 2014

Sew, Mama, Sew Giveaway Day

I love this time of year and the Sew, Mama, Sew Giveaway! It is fun to share some fabric and find new to me blogs. Bloggers are generous people and my blog friends have given me so much both in fabric and in friendship. I am giving away 9 fat quarters of Art Gallery Fabrics line Reminisce. Sorry but 3 of the prints have approximately a 3x3 piece missing that I used to make hexies. Giveaway is open until May 16 at 5pm PST and I will email the winner by May 18th who will be chosen randomly. Giveaway is open to my international friends as well. To win leave me a comment and let me know what you are sewing/crafting right now. Followers get an extra chance. Be sure to check out all of the items being given away at Sew, Mama, Sew for fabric and supplies and here for handmade goods. I usually respond to all my comments but will not be responding to comments on this post. Have fun and I hope you all win something!!!
5/16/14 Comments have been closed. Thank you to everyone who entered the give away!! I really enjoyed reading about what everyone was making!

The winner of the give away was comment #299, Taryn, who said,"Following on Bloglovin". I wished I could have sent every commenter a little something so I had one of my twins pick another number. She chose # 103 which was Barbara who said, "Art Gallery is the best in my book. Love those colors together. Right now I am finishing up binding on a lap quilt- yea!! I sent her a charm pack of Simply Color.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Finish it Up Friday: The Curvy Goose Edition

Happy Friday and yay! for some finishes. Gemma had a birthday in April and now that she has received it I can share it with you. I had decided at the beginning of our Wombat Stew sewing year, which was last June, that wanted to make and send each of the girls a surprise on their birthday. I ended up going with a kitchen theme and made each of them a tea towel and hot pad holder. Gemma is the last birthday in our group so I have been thinking about what I would make her the longest but of course it didn't turn out anything like i had originally planned.

A week before I started to make Gemma's gift I was going through fabric to find something to use in a block I was making and I came across my small stash of original Flea Market Fancy scraps. I am not sure why but I love the original more than the reprint. I digress, but when I came across the scraps I really wanted to make something with them so pulled them out to use for Gemma. The fabric isn't what I would consider her style but it is bright and cheery and that is definitely Gemma.

I have been loving blocks with curves and flying geese lately so I found a paper pieced paper that used both of these elements. I never tire of a low volume background and used some of my scraps up on this project.

I used a decorative arrow stitch above and below the row of geese on the tea towel but it didn't show up very well with the gray Aurifil thread on the black yarn dyed Essex linen but it did add some texture.

All of Gem's family speaks French so I backed both the towel and hot pad with a french text print. These were so much fun to make I think I am going to make myself a set ;)

Sweet Midge was Queen of Wombat Stew for April and she chose a really fun London Calling theme. Kristy came up with some really fun patterns! I chose the London bobby. I think he is rather cute with his moustache! The background print wasn't as low volume as I had hoped even with the cream background. I debated about using it but went with it in the end since the rest of the block uses solids. It is a bit busy but I think that must be how a bobby feels at the end of the day having cars and buses and things coming at him all day. I can't wait to see Midge's finished quilt!
For May in my Cheer Circle at do.Good Stitches Wendi asked for pink and red Sawtooth Stars. I love a star block and these were fun to make. I impressed myself by making flying geese WITHOUT paper piecing. Yes, I am a paper piecing addict and sometimes I use it for a crutch. I held my breath while making them hoping I did the math right and there were a couple points when I questioned if they would turn out. It was very fun when they turned out just like they were supposed to. I am easily entertained!
Lastly, here is a project that I am working towards finishing. Yes, I can not get the curves and flying geese out of my system and have started on another New York Beauty. This is for practice. It is the same pattern I did in March but I wanted to try it again to see if the curves would be as challenging as the first time. The first curved seam I had to rip 7 times before I got it right. I had been using a pinless method but then I went to pinning and I haven't ripped a seam since. I haven't been using a lot of pins just in key spots. This pattern is here. Linking up with Crazy Mom Quilts for Finish It Up Friday and with Kristy for her Paper Piecing Party since all but 1 of my projects are paper pieced :) Have a fun weekend!! We are off to a basketball tournament for the weekend.
Paper Piecing Party
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Friday, May 2, 2014

Flashback Friday: Spring Break 2014

We went on vacation a couple of weeks ago when the kids were off school for spring break. We left town about 5:30 p.m. on a Friday and drove 4 hours to San Francisisco. The 2 little girls had never been to a hotel before or slept in a room with all of their sisters so it took awhile to get them to sleep. We caught a shuttle to the airport at 7am then had a 5 hour flight. Then we had a 5 1/2 hour layover. before catching another short flight to our destination. The twins and Sam were fine, of course, but the 2 toddlers...well, they were a bit cuckoo!! I am sure one day I will look back on those memories and laugh. At the time, I decided I would never, ever for the rest of my life travel with a child under 9.
Once we got there all was forgotten with a day at the beach.

We spent as much of our week as possible at the beach playing.

The kids did a little bamboo pole fishing then put the fish back in the pond. It was a little tricky getting the hook to sink down to the bigger fish before the small fish near the surface of the water gobbled the bread off the hook.
it has become a tradition for us to drive up to Waimea Canyon. We always stop at the same shop for ice cream on the way there but this year the ice cream shop was out of business. The gift shop with the world's biggest Hawaiian shirt was still there. Once we got up to the Canyon the kids ran around a bit.

We went out to dinner our last night there. Every time I get the camera out the 2 year old starts making faces or sticks out her tongue.

                                                        Good bye Kauai, until next time!!
                                                                     Have a fun weekend!