Archive | April 2014

Swag for the Handsome Woodturner

My hubby loves his lathe – if I didn’t know better, I might suspect he loves it more than me…(just teasing)!  He got it several years ago and is having a great time learning new things and perfecting known techniques.  Until recently, he has been getting by with this very manly repurposed Pampered Chef apron from years ago when I sold Pampered Chef.  If you look closely, you can see that he wears it inside out.  I could never figure that out until one day I put my hand in the pocket and all my nails came out packed with sawdust and assorted gritty things….ewwww!  See how the bottom of the pocket bulges?!  Even inside out it gets wood stuff in it.


At Christmas, I gave him a coupon for a custom woodturning apron.  Around Valentines, we finally went together and he picked out the fabric he wanted.  Good thing he went because I would never have guessed the fabric he picked.  I was picturing a snazzy chevron laminated fabric.  As you can see in the picture below – not even close to my vision!


This is his very manly leather like choice.  It fits perfectly in with the man cave.


I measured him, sketched out a pattern and starting cutting.  About 2 hours later and quite a few interruptions from the kids, I was done.


The neck loop is fabric with 3 inches of elastic on each side for easy put on and removal.  The original plan was to have an elastic waist with a hook at the side.  Then he tried it on and decided the straight down look was Not in keeping with the manly image in his head, so I sewed two super long strips so he could wrap them around himself and tie it in the front.


Here is my handsome, talented hubby in front of the machine that vies for my attention. This is a bowl he is working on. And, of course, he shared his great smile…not!



Here is a better shot of the elastic neck and the pencil pocket he had me sew on for him. He has loved working with wood for as long as I have known him and before that!  He recently opened an Etsy shop under FerdsWoodcraft.  Why can’t I be smarter than the link button more than once a month?!  Check out his shop – he really is talented!  A wood store in Salt Lake keeps inviting him to come work there…

It is busy and crazy around here – Sage tests, this test and that as the end of school comes closer , Grandma Day at preschool, baptisms, birthdays, riding with a teenager as she learns to drive, (that is getting a little less knuckle clenching and hair raising – thankfully she doesn’t want to try the freeway yet!) Easter, preparing for dance recitals, etc, etc, etc….ok, it is just life.

So, Merry Christmas in mid April, hubby!  Thanks for your patience!

Any Christmas coupons/presents/promises still making you feel guilty?!  Get it done and share!  I would love a show and tell!



Julie Herman Wedding Quilt Triangle

Julie Herman at JAYBIRD QUILTS, is getting married.  Here is an excerpt from her blog:

“About our wedding quilt:A huppah is the canopy a Jewish couple stands under during the wedding ceremony. It can be a sheet, a family heirloom tapestry, or a quilt! It is held up by four poles and it symbolizes the home that we will build together.I am going to make a quilt for our huppah, naturally. It is going to be large and I need 222 small triangle blocks to make it. That’s where you come in.”

These are some of the Kona Solid colors she choose and Pink Chalk Fabrics put them in bundles.  I ordered one and got the middle bundle.  Their website was easy to use and the bundle came quickly.  Great service at Pink Chalk Fabrics.



Here is the block I made.  I used Suzanne Mcneil’s 10 minute block pattern and cut it down to the 6 inch triangle.

This is Julie’s plan for the Huppah.  All the blank triangles will be filled with triangles blocks from all over the world.  What a super fun thing to be a part of.  I can’t wait to see a picture of the Huppah when it is finished.

Squeezing in 1 Day Before the Deadline

In February, I found this charity organization and shared that info in an earlier blog.  Here is the kit I got from Quilts for Kids.


I got right to work and had the top pieced and sandwiched the first week.  The pattern is super easy and the fabric is so cute!  I love the tone on tone white.


Machine quilting is required so I got to work on the Bernina.    The quilting they recommended was stitch in the ditch horizontally and vertically and diagonally between all the blocks.  Stitching around the inner border and in the outer border.  My mom’s new machine has all these fun stitches including a car.  I thought that would be a fun touch around the outer border.


It was slow going and harder than the small practice piece I did.  It didn’t take long before the cars were no longer cars and because I wasn’t checking my work as I went, I did a whole long side of the quilt before I realized the disaster I was creating!


Soooo…. I spent a several hours frogging (unpicking machine quilting).  I finally got all the cars out and headed back up to Mom’s to borrow her machine again.  This time I just went with a plain straight line.   I am running out of time to get it back within 6 weeks.  Stitching in the ditch is a little harder than it sounds.  I watched a couple of videos and read a few articles and learned a few tips on staying in the ditch, so hopefully there will be less straying out of the ditch next time.



Brownie is holding up the quilt.  Her little arms didn’t allow for a very long session and she said “whew, this is heavy” after two pictures.  haha  The binding is just folded over backing and zigzaged it. Here it is all done.  It had to be washed and dried and as soon as it comes out of the dryer, I can package it up and mail it back on my way to pick up kids.  Thank goodness – I squeezed this little no sweat project in one day before the final due date.  I still have to sign the label – I was so excited about that to start with and now I am not sure I want to claim it with my name.  Such a learning curve to machine quilting!

Honey Bee Pillow Nightmare

Last month I shared this darling fabric and pattern from my LQS.  It is a straight forward easy pattern that I managed to turn into a frustrating project!  I was being so careful I even called my hubby to make sure I cut the L x W correctly. So I cut it all out and started sewing it together.  Only to discover the pattern measurements were wrong – the pillow case was 18″ x 7″ What?!  I had extra fabric (THAT should have been my first clue) so I cut some strips and sewed them on the ends to make it bigger.  When that didn’t work.  I unpicked all of my improv seams and remeasured my fabric.  I was stumped. It was cut correctly.  So I put it in a bag to take back to the LQS and see what they could help me figure out.  Weeks later, I finally made it back to the LQS.  I took it all out of the baggie and put it on the counter – as I am talking to them, I finally figured out MY mistake.  I was suppose to cut TWO of the larger pieces and I had only cut one.  And being the fixer that I am – then I cut up the remaining piece.  ARG!  The sweet ladies there showed me how to piece my second back piece together and how to sew it so it will make the pillow accurately and cute.Image

I got home, did some mending and worked on this pillow case. Where is my brain!?  I sewed the back pieces on upside down, but I am so done working on this pillow, I left it!  Besides you can’t tell from the front side.  It is slightly larger than my 2 loveseat pillows that I put in it.


I love the green ties.  I think they are my favorite part.  Brownie asked it the bee pillow was going in the preschool room or in the front room with the chicks.  Front room, of course!


This is the back – see the beehives are upside down. The opening looks like I hemmed it – I thought that was a nice unexpected touch, but it is really the seam where I had to piece the fabric back together to make it the right size!  This simple case has been so aggravating it kinda took the fun out of completing it and displaying it.  Just one more thing off my WIP list.



I was hoping that getting this finished would cheer me up but it didn’t really….

Any projects of yours turn into a nightmare lately?  Share and let’s celebrate the end of the nightmare together.  🙂

On the bright side – my garden looks so lovely!





Happy Wednesday!!!

Modern Bee May Block

You may or may not know this, but I recently expanded my quilting horizons and went completely out of my comfort zone and joined a quilting bee. It is out of my comfort zone, because it gives me an actual sewing deadline each month.  Sometimes as a busy mom having other deadlines can seem like too much. I have been letting my fears hold me back. I have wanted to enjoy creating with a group, but most of the guild’s around here seem closed to new members and I haven’t tried very hard to find a group to join, so when I saw this group available, I jumped on the band wagon.  I have followed Lindsay Connor’s blog, Craftbuds,  and Jennifer Mathis’s Ellison Lane blog for awhile. Lindsay is the author and Jennifer made the Playing Cards quilt.  I have been talking to Mom about joining a local group here or creating one – which I may still do!

Modern Bee Quilt Along

This book is available online – my sweet husband bought mine for me. He is super supportive and makes all the right sounds as he admires my latest block – thanks, honey!

The Bee block for May is The Triple Star by Elena Roscoe. This star block was a LOT of half square triangles, similar to last months, but done with a different method. The hostess this month choose black background with low volume black and white prints and a colorful center.  So each person in the group gets the fun of making 1 star block and mailing it to her this month.  Then she will sew them into her own quilt.  So FUN!  I get to try a different pattern each month but not commit the time and money to complete a whole quilt.  We are suppose to use our stash fabric, but since my quilt fabric stash is very VERY small, I have gotten to go buy fabric for the blocks.  Wahoo!  Added bonus for me!  Here are the beginning half square triangles that end up being 1 1/2 inch squares for the first row of star points. Such little squares! They were kind of fun!


Each month we get to design a signature block for the back of the hostesses quilt.  I accidentally made too many 1 1/2 inch squares, so I used them for the signature block. The colorful center block was a scrap from Miss America’s water bottle covers business. This block uses the block in block construction method instead of rows construction, which was a fun way to do it. All the half square triangles got gradually bigger and it turned out like this!



I would like to give a Big shout out for Mary Ellen’s Best Press.  It is a clear starch and sizing spray.  It made pressing the seams open and flat so much easier!  last month I pressed and pressed on the stacked windmills block and it never looked as nice as this block. It didn’t make my iron or my ironing board cover all sticky and there were no flakes.  I bought the scent free kind – it does come in 5 or 6 scents. And it is earth friendly (threw that in since Earth day is coming up)! I highly recommend it!

Mary Ellen's Best Press Clear Starch Alternative

Well, I have a beautiful dress to sew for Blondie.  She is getting baptized soon and we are making her a wowza dress!  She picked an embroidered beaded lace to go over the satin.  Thank goodness I got it on sale!  More on that later! Then you will get why I made up the word Wowza!

Spring break for a week with hail, snow, and slush rain makes for a LONG week!  Hard to shoo the kids outside to play in that! The sun peeked out for about an hour today, but it is back to cloudy gray…sigh.  Not complaining about the moisture though – very grateful for that!!!! Just wish it was bright, warm moisture….haha.

So, how have you stepped out of your comfort zone this year?  Would love to hear about it!