Saturday, November 28, 2009

Coming Soon!

I'm pretty sure Monica was the first to make the announcement, and NOBODY can top her when it comes to mad Photoshop skills. If only I could make my real washing machine look like that.
So yes, you'll definitely want to be checking in with Holly starting on Friday, Dec. 4...she'll be telling you all the details.

Suffice it to say there will be lots of sweetness and cute.

P.S. No guinea pigs were harmed in the making of this lame little banner.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009


This is of course the time of year when we officially express gratitude for all our blessings and "family" is at the top of the list.

All families are unique, and ours is no exception, being a 100% ginger family.

Did you know that only 2% of people in the US have red hair? The greatest concentration of redheads is in Scotland and Ireland, and the numbers there aren't all that big either.

I'm pretty sure we've covered the entire red-hair spectrum in our household. I am not kidding--people used to stare at us when we'd be out together as a family. It wasn't uncommon for people to approach our table at restaurants--always to ask about our hair!

And by the way...people ask pretty amazingly inappropriate questions when you have red hair, but I'm NOT going there!

I was having fun going thru some old photos today and here's what I found:

Me, in 3rd grade.

Here's a fairly current pic of my husband...all of his kid-pics are in black and white. You know, because he's older than me...

Eric's 2nd grade photo really showed off the strawberry blond of his hair...

Nick, here at age 2, has the REDDEST hair of the clan and used to get teased for it, but ended up winning "Best Hair" in school. Go figure.

Jeff, my youngest, has brownish-red's browner now than it was when this pic was taken back when he was 5, but still definitely "red".

"Gingers" may be mocked by some (I was appalled to read a news item recently that a kid was attacked in school because some Facebook post called for redheads to be beaten up) but my kids wear their hair proudly.

I found out about this site just today and can't wait to get a copy of the book! It'll be on our coffee table for sure.

Well, it's about time for me to check and see how well our turkey is thawing...the next few days are going to be very busy for most of us and I want to make sure I got the chance to wish you all a very happy Thanksgiving!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

I'm a sucker for scallops

There sure seem to be a lot of scallopy things in my life these days:

Trying to make a lampshade for the family room...kinda-sorta following these instructions...

Then there's the cutest-ever cakestand I was thrilled to find at Target (Melvin not included).

And I'm knee-deep in sewing secret scallops...I can only show you a peek, but more real soon!

P.S. Do you see me, Jocelyn? I'm waving to you!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

I did it!!

First of all I want to thank all of you for commenting about the tablecloths...I really needed some advice on this. The overwhelming verdict was to CUT THEM UP and so I did! I've still got a few that remained in one piece...a couple that really are too nice and a few that weren't the right colors.

So one night I couldn't sleep...decided to get up and DO something. Went into the studio, picked up my gramma's old scissors for confidence, grabbed an old tablecloth and CUT. It probably wasn't too smart that the very first item to be sliced was my very favorite, and after cutting I realized that I wasn't entirely sure that the piece would be the right size.

I did have to make some adjustments but no tablecloths were wasted. I had to make a total of seventeen of these...and because of the way things turned out, I ended up making 2 of them out of a piece of striped new fabric, which you'll see on the kitchen window.

I'm super happy with the way this project turned out and my granny kitchen is getting a little brighter and more colorful every day. I don't think my family is thrilled with the new look, but now that my kitchen is happier, I'm wanting to spend more time in there and they are benefitting from that. So all good! And on to new pillows, cushions, and the like.

So there you have it--the newly adorned kitchen window. I'll show the rest of the windows in a future post. For those of you who may have a similar dilemma to mine, I have to say that the first cut is the hardest!

And I'm trusting that Judy in Michigan is correct when she commented that she's "...sure there are other tablecloths circling the globe...". I think that's a delightful image--bright, well-loved tablecloths floating somewhere above just waiting for a fabric lover to find them!

Monday, November 16, 2009

It all started with this:

At Quilt Market, while visiting Holly at her booth, she pulled out a chunk of this fabric and asked offhand if I'd like to take it home with me. Well she didn't have to ask me twice!
I love love love that print--I'm sure if I wasn't so busy sewing I'd be making desserts like that all the time. Don't believe me? How 'bout just at Christmas time? Still no? You're right. But that fabric is so cool, don't you think?

I'm normally not a huge fan of pearlized fabrics, but at Christmas time I see it all differently.

And what I was seeing was some new projects for my house for Christmas!

Every year it's the same thing with Pam and me. I try to suck her into my feverish holiday decorating frenzy and I know she feels drawn in but at the same time has to fight her Inner Grinch. I'm so happy that she was asked to participate in the Cross Country Christmas blog hop because she's having to immerse herself in Christmas goodness day after day and I'm hoping that this year I'll be able to take advantage of her weakened defenses and can talk her into having the same kind of fun that I do!

So anyway, that's where it started. I already had some of that particular line of fabric (LakeHouse Teatime Florals 2) but went over to the Fat Quarter Shop to grab some other bits, since the more options the better, right?

I've added tulle, a chunk of swirly white fabric, some vintage dresden trim, cheapo ornaments from Target, and I think I'll make some more felt doves from this pattern.

I already have plenty of birds and pale colors for my living room tree--here's a pic of last year's--and I think it'll be fun to work some of these new items in.

Can't forget the Granny Kitchen and family room...I've been busy collecting items for that area as well.

Vintage fabric, a favorite stripe and some inexpensive cotton from Joann's are forming a sweet little collection!

Some of Martha's glitter, the cutest .99 felt stars from Target and some stars of my own are forming their own little pile in another part of the studio.

So far all I've done is gaze at my assortments of goodies. I've been busy making valances, after all! (More on that to come). But tomorrow I'll be getting my plans in order--I'm seeing quilted runners, pillows, pictures and who knows what all else.

And since I've gone and told you all about it, this will make me actually finish...and I'll be sharing my progress so be sure to check back! There might even be some fun things for you as well...

Friday, November 13, 2009

The winner!

Congratulations to Arlette, who won my magazine giveaway...Arlette? I'm hoping you'll find enough to keep you busy for awhile!

P.S. For those who have asked, the block pictured is from my new pattern "Rose Delight".

Thursday, November 12, 2009

So many blocks!

I'm so lucky to have had my block chosen to be one of the 100 blocks in this awesome new magazine!
It's a great magazine and especially fun for me because so many designer friends also have blocks included. And seriously--100 different blocks all in one place? That's pretty special.

My block is #34, "Rose Trellis". I think it's a pretty versatile block, but I love the Mill House Inn fabric--what could be finer than flowers on top of more flowers?

If you haven't yet heard, you'll want to follow the 100 Blocks blog tour daily Nov. 9-13 at
for inspiration, ideas and giveaways galore! Look for 100 Blocks from Today's Top Designers in your local quilt shop or purchase it at

The prizes look pretty great--and one of them, courtesy of C&T Publishing, is a set of books written by their authors who have a block in the magazine, and that includes the book by yours truly!

Maybe you'd prefer to win a copy of the magazine? Well, Quiltmaker is letting each designer pick a winner for a free copy. So leave a comment right away because tomorrow I'll be picking a winner!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

I need some advice...

So last summer I embarked on a kitchen update project. It sure seemed like it would never be finished...and you know what? It's still not done. I do believe that painting those cabinets destroyed a tiny piece of my soul.

At some point I'll show "before" and "after" pics, but we haven't gotten quite far enough in the "after" process for that to happen.

My family tells me it looks like a Granny Kitchen. And while I'm not a Granny, I'm pleased with that description because that's sort of the look I was going for. I would have preferred "farmhouse kitchen" or "charming kitchen" but I'll take what I can get.

The painting is complete and now it's time to add the fun fabric stuff. You know, pillows, new chair cushions and valances for the windows. The kitchen opens onto the family room, so the new look continues in that room as well. So we're talking a lot of windows. Five, to be exact.

I've been agonizing over my fabric choices for several months now. But "agonizing" probably isn't the right word...more like enjoying considering my many options. Because I didn't have the brackets or poles in place to even hang the valances and I knew it would take my husband months to get around to taking care of that part of it for me. And it did. Take months. MANY MONTHS. So why rush anything?

But now, they're up. And he's wondering why he was asked to cut and hang poles and brackets when there's nothing to hang on them.

So now, I'm agonizing. And here's where you come in: I've been collecting vintage tablecloths for awhile now. Because that's what I want to use for my projects. Most of the tablecloths were purchased very cheaply on eBay because they've got damaged bits. I did get a trifle carried away on a couple of auctions so they're not all bargains. I think they'd make WONDERFUL valances, etc. but I can't seem to cut them apart.
It's just like when you have a piece of quilt fabric you love and can't use.

On the plus side, these projects would allow me to enjoy those fabrics every single day. Why keep them locked away? On the minus side, they're vintage tablecloths!

So seriously. What do you think? Hack them up and enjoy the results or only use new fabric?

Friday, November 06, 2009

A Winner! (finally)

I warned you that I stink at these giveaways. I really do. Somehow Wednesday became Friday but I decided to put off running my errands to pick a winner. Seems the least I could do!

I used the same random number system as last time: I texted each of my 3 sons and asked for a number between 1 and 118. Amazingly enough I got a text back from each of them.

That's pretty shocking, I have to say.

So without further ado, Annie, who if I counted correctly is comment #58, you are the winner! Please email me at with your address and I really will get the patterns out right away. I'm much better with the mailing of stuff. Honest.

It's been awfully busy around here lately...all good stuff...some things I can share with you really soon and some will have to wait a bit...

So to go with my random number I'll leave you with a random photo. Of what it looks like under my sewing table on any given day.

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Monday, November 02, 2009

super fun garland*

So the other day I was wondering what's up over in SisBoom land and found Jennifer's wonderful circle garland. Jennifer had used amazing bits of paper for hers but apparently the question had come up about how to do this with fabric...well, I was pondering that one the moment I saw her photo!

I'm sure you'll see more of this on my blog as we get closer to the holidays, but wanted to give you a quick method using fabric for those of you who are like me and are always looking for things to do with leftover bits of cloth...

I simply fused Heat & Bond Light to the wrong side of my fabrics (don't cut the fusible into circles--just cut chunks of Heat & Bond that will cover the fabric pieces). Then I used a Fiskars circle cutter to cut my 1 1/2" circles, but tracing circles onto the fusible would be easy if you don't have a fancy-pants cutter. Then I fused two circles together with rick rack in between. SUPER easy and fun!

Thanks for the great idea, Jennifer!

*AKA I Know I'm Going to End Up With Miles of This Stuff

P.S. There's still plenty of time to enter my pattern drawing--doubt I'll be back for drawing a name until end of Wednesday, so get your name in!

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