Friday, June 28, 2013

New Fabric Friday...always check the selvage! last!   Before I get to the guts of this post, I just want to say thank you to everyone for sending me some positive vibes and your thoughtful comments on yesterday's post.  I picked myself up...dusted myself off...and hit the ground running today!

Part of the picking myself up involved a little fabric pick-me-up shopping trip today.  I hit the local Hancock's fabric just to see what might be lurking from the shelves, and I gotta tell you...I was incredibly surprised.  Before I show you what made it's way home with me, I'm going to introduce you to Christen and her site Love by Hand (got to briefly meet Christen at Sew South earlier this year) and link up with:
Love By Hand

I have developed a Friday shopping habit, and now I can share it with others!  Woohoo!

On to today's goodies!  This week this stack came home with me:

I had no real intention with my shopping today...I just needed a fabric fix!  I was kind of excited to walk in and see that all of Hancock's ABS Cotton Prints were 50% off (I like to use these for quilt backs and used quite a few in my Scrappy Trips quilt...which I really should get basted and quilted!!).  So I took quite a bit of time perusing the shelves...and imagine my surprise when I saw that some of the ABS labels had been pasted on over some other labels...I thought perhaps they were recycling the cardboard bolts or something.  And then I looked at the selvage:

Ummm...hmmm...I double and triple checked, and yep...these bolts were labeled as ABS Cotton Prints.    When I was having them cut, the young lady that worked in the store mentioned she hadn't seen some of these before.  I asked if they were new...had they gotten a new shipment in...and she confirmed yes these had just arrived and that the marked price was correct.  These were regularly priced at 6.99 to 7.99 a yard.  On sale for 50% off.  I may have to go back and dig some more!  I looked up several of the lines, with most released in 2011.  (Deer Valley is listed as discontinued). When I got home I tried to search out ABS Cotton Prints, but didn't get very far.  I'm very curious if they purchased "leftover" bolts, relabeled them and put them out to the stores.

Anyways...let this be a lesson...older fabric can be a great new fabric for someone...and always peek at the selvage!


Thursday, June 27, 2013

some days

are just plain rotten.  and sometimes...your entire week goes along with it!

I was reading a few blogs the other day, looking at posts on "how to draw traffic to your blog" the "does and don'ts of blogging"...and guess what...I'm in the "rejects traffic" and "drives readers away" categories.  Or I'm about to...I'm blogging about something non-quilt/craft related...getting a little personal...and to be honest...not giving a flying flip about it!

For the past four years, I have lost my summer to a major work related project...the same just repeats every year.  And this bites the big one.  I can't say a whole lot about it (unfortunately) other than it's incredibly stressful, and can be incredibly rewarding.

And then there are weeks like this one...and while I found a glimmer of light at the end of a very dark tunnel right around lunch time today...all I can say right now is that it's likely going to suck for the remainder of the summer (I'm such a pessimist...or is it realist?) and I'm seriously bummed out about that.

Perhaps it's because I'm getting older...or slower...or...well I don't know what else...but this year this project has been incredibly much more painful than any other year I can remember.

So I'm going to ask that anyone still reading this blog (after I broke all the blogging rules) to send some positive vibes my way (if you have any to spare!).

Because this won't be over until sometime in mid-August.  Ick.  I need to sew something...maybe tomorrow.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Another bag...and busting open the stash...

Good Morning!  Hope your Saturday is dawning even half as lovely as mine!   (Girl is at the grandparents, Guy is out on an just me and the dogs, and the day and house all to myself!!!).

Took yesterday off from work (desperately needed some recharging!) and dropped in to a new-to-me fabric store and then my regular local shop (Creative Sewing Machine Center) and came out with a few things.  The new-to-me shop...I may go back...we'll see...I picked up some voile by Joel Dewberry and Amy Butler, and a nice yard cut of an Amy Butler Alchemy print I hadn't seen around these parts yet.

At my regular shop...I could spend hours there...just wandering around, checking everything out...I ended up leaving with a new bag pattern, some Joel Dewberry Notting Hill for the new bag, some Bella Snow to line the bag,  and then a few cuts of other stuff to add to the stash.

I came home and whipped up the bag (well...sort of...took about 5 hours...)

I made the small size of the pattern and made two minor modifications, one intentionally and one not.  The first, I used fusible fleece in the handles instead of the SF101 (both from pellon) the pattern called for, (lots of SF101 used, and I love how the bag stands up on it's own!). The second modification was because I had a serious issue figuring out the pockets...they came out all kinds of wonky.  It was also my one issue with the pattern, the cutting instructions left a lot to be desired when it came to understanding how the pocket should be cut out.  (I'll probably reread it later and it make perfect sense, but at the time...nope).  This bag is intended to be my gym bag, as the duffle I was using is just plain too big, and the other tote I have is already designated (and filled with) beach/pool stuff.  I think it will work out, if not, then I'll make the tote in the larger size.  I like the bag, and it will be used!

Now...on to busting the stash...I had to laugh at myself after bringing home my fabric purchases yesterday...because once again...I hit up Joel Dewberry's Notting Hill.  Which by the purchases I have made of that line alone, I would have to say it's my absolute favorite.  Here is what I'm talking about:

(Some of the pieces I received in my awesome Sew South goodie bag!).  And the above photo only represents the pink color way.  I also have the rest of the collection in the teal and other color way (can't remember what color that one is).  My Sisters Ten BOM blocks are utilizing the one color way...and the teal is patiently waiting it's turn.  (Ok...truth...I've been hoarding the pink and teal...).  And now I think it's time I just cut into them and make something...probably from the pink.  (I do have a purse and now the spice market tote in Notting Hill pinks/orange already) Because I love pink and orange.  So perhaps a quilt...just for idea what pattern I'm going to use (considered Swoon...but I haven't even finished my original Swoon quilt yet!).  So I'll add that to the list of things to happen.  And not purchase anymore Notting Hill until I do...I better get this quilt done fast!

Well, I must be sewing machine desperately needs a cleaning...and then I've got a quilt top to finish putting together...and I'd like to get two of my "to be quilted" tops basted and ready to be quilted...and then...well...we'll see how far I get!

Friday, June 21, 2013

dear suck

Warning...serious griping ahead...

Several years ago (somewhere around 6-8 years ago) I stopped using paypal because, kinda sucked (for me).  I had minor issues from day one that were aggravating, but not devastating...but added up to be plain aggravating; I never really felt secure using paypal (fake emails, hacked accounts), and their customer service was awful (i.e. trying to report fake emails/hacked accounts/reactivating my own account/rudeness, etc), so I STOPPED using it.  Which meant, at the time, I was a bit limited in my ebay shopping and other online shopping.  I wasn't concerned.

Fast forward...and now I'm PISSED.  There are several people who sell lovely patterns and have online stores that I cannot shop from because paypal STILL SUCKS!

A perfectly good, legitimate debit card and the option to just pay for something without a paypal account...paypal won't accept my card at the purchase point...individual invoices will work....but not direct on website.

My bank (whom I've been with for 15 years, and actually do trust) says the issue is something with paypal...they can't figure out why paypal won't accept my card...which means that there are some things I just cannot purchase online...normally not a big deal (and Guy is happy).

But, it's incredibly frustrating to not be able to purchase patterns and fabric (there is one pattern in particular I want very badly...and I may have to contact the seller/pattern writer/artist to see if they can work with me...or just walk away and not purchase...cuz it's driving me nuts!) from small business/independent retailers/(i.e direct from the source).  Last year I had so many issues trying to pay for my Sew South ticket...I was incredibly thankful that Jennifer was so easy to work with to help me resolve and retain a ticket.

at the end of the day...I want to spend some independent sellers...and just get my stinkin patterns...and I can't...because somewhere in the magical mix of it all...some computer code/glitch/piece...doesn't like me.

which makes me a very grumpy girl.

oh well...enough of a gripe.


Sunday, June 16, 2013

Modern Mini Madness!

Woohoo!  It may be a little last minute of a finish...but had to jump in on the

Several weeks ago I stumbled across this Bloomin' Quilt as you go tutorial by Cori at Let's Eat Grandpa and I had to try it just took seeing the Modern Mini challenge to kick me into gear!  Here is the panel I made using the tutorial:

I took my panel and turned it into a 16x16 pillow.

Here is the back of the pillow:

I love that whale fabric...found it at Joanns this weekend on serious sale, so grabbed some up for little projects like this!

Well, that's it!  Make sure you head over to Ellison Lane Quilts to check out all the fabulous mini's that have been entered!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

pretty little birdie...

actually...the term "little" really should not be used in this post's title...because this bag:

is not little!  Not by any stretch of any imagination. (forgive the pics..the bag is on a road trip right now, so I only have my instagram pics of it).

I made this bag for Girl (who picked out the fabric (with a little help from me) and the pattern (pattern was all her)) and finished it up Monday.  The pattern is Amy Butler's Birdie Sling and man oh pattern directions ever!  Very little time spent trying to figure out what it was saying/what I was supposed to do.  Made two changes: added a magnetic snap closure and did not double interface one of the pieces, but that was it. 

Seriously...the bag is huge!  I'm really tempted to make this one again...for me...maybe even the same fabrics...but Girl might not like that so much.  Maybe in Carnaby Street...hmmmmm

I spent a total of 7 hours making this bag...and the first 3 were spent getting pattern pieces ready (I use freezer paper) and cutting out all the fabric and interfacing and attaching all of the interfacing.  I'd also consider the magnetic snap added about 20 minutes because I had to dig around for my reference book (A Bag for All Reasons by Lisa Lam) as this is only the 2nd magnetic snap I've ever installed.  I figure to do it again (make the bag again), the time would probably be cut down a little...but I definitely see myself making more as the finished product is GORGEOUS!

Pattern: Birdie Sling by Amy Butler
Fabric: Prince Charming by Tula Pink, Moda Bella Solid (unsure what specific color)
Interfacing: Pellon SF101 and Thermolam Plus (fusible fleece)
Thread: Mettler

Sunday, June 9, 2013

From one list to another...

So after I pretty much did no sewing on Friday, nor Saturday (had a marathon shopping weekend, including some fabric...and a new bag pattern...I have issues)...I got up early this morning (unintentionally...I blame the dogs...6 am is way too early on a non-work day!)...and officially have some kind of finish!

My skull quilt is officially a quilt top:

So it moves from the "in pieces" list to the "to be quilted" list!

And now...I'm on to this:

I'll let you know how it goes!

Friday, June 7, 2013

One goal...can she make it to the finish???

So...with what looks like a soggy weekend ahead of me (Thanks TS Andrea!)...I have decided that my goal for this weekend is to FINISH some things!

I have way too many quilt tops waiting to be quilted.

I have at least two three four (? perhaps more) piles of quilt blocks waiting to become quilt tops.

I have new bag patterns waiting to be used.

I have new fabric begging to become something.

So at some point...I want to get something finished this weekend!  So that's my one goal for the weekend, finish SOMETHING!

I'll let you know how it goes!

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Put it in the DONE pile!

I did quite a bit of stitching yesterday on the skull quilt...but today was all about the finish...and I finally finished Soda Shoppe!  (as in finally binded the's only been sitting waiting on binding since mid-April...youch...)

Here it is:

and the really really simple back:

and the details:

Fabric: Vintage Modern by Bonnie&Camille, KONA Snow or White (hard to tell), backing is a basic quilting cotton print I picked up from Hancock's
Pattern: Sugar Almonds
Batting: Warm&White
Thread: Aurifil for piecing and quilting

This quilt belongs to Girl, and she claims to love we are both happy!

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Summer sewing

We've officially hit summer here in South still have a week left of school...but the temperatures are on the rise, pools have opened, and the busiest time of the year has started at work.  Ick.  Oh well...let's talk about some summer sewing...

Weekday sewing will pretty much be out the window for me, work will be sucking up the majority of my time, so I plan on spending a fair amount of time on the weekends sewing...most of the time.  We have a few weekend side trips planned and I definitely am going to have to spend some time outdoors!  Because of this, I'm going to skip checking in weekly with the 15 minute challenge over on Kate's blog...I'm just not going to worry about it for the next few months.  If I sew, awesome...if I don't...well, it's kind of expected and I can't feel bad about not sewing.

So now that's out of the way...a little update on my skull quilt (pics via Instagram):

last weekend I got everything cut out

and started putting the little bits together

and this morning I put a few blocks together (I ended up taping these to a wall in the hall so that I could keep everything in proper order).

And now...perhaps I'll put together a few more...or maybe pull fabric for a new bag...I do have these staring at me: