Tuesday, April 26, 2011

doll clothes

Every year the youth at our church have a silent auction. The money raised by the auction goes toward their mission trip. This summer they are going to New Orleans for a week. Both Steve and Ally are going (it will be Ally's first mission trip!).

So, I decided to make something fun to be auctioned. Here's the deal. Our church has a large (for a tiny church) group of little girls, ages 5ish to 10ish. And for every little girl who attends worship on Sunday mornings, there is an "American Girl" doll by her side. Seriously. If we counted the dolls our weekly attendance would go way up! So, I decided to make some doll clothes to lure the little girls and their parents! I love this Simplicity pattern & made a couple of dresses with coordinating aprons. Here's the best part.... even though the pattern calls for more fabric, I managed to squeak each dress and each apron out of a fat quarter! I have tons of fat quarters in a drawer doing nothing. I just couldn't resist buying them when I saw them in the store, but I had no real purpose for them. This was perfect!

The pattern makes up quickly. I used a thin strip of velcro for the closures, making it easy for the little girls to dress their dolls. Here's another...

I'm planning to make a few more before the auction in June. Just for kicks, I also made a pair of cupcake pjs from another pattern..

A good way to use up some stash....

Saturday, April 23, 2011

more DS prints and a pattern review

I went back to Joanns today & got some more Denyse Schmidt prints. Those reds were just calling my name! These might become placemats for my kitchen. Or an apron. Pickings were very slim today, those prints are flying on out of there! I had picked up this pattern, McCalls 6060, the other day to make some little summer dresses for Mackenzie. The more I thought about it, I wanted to make a dress out of some of the blue/green prints I had bought the other day. So I picked up another yard of one of those prints too.

And I whipped up this little lovely today. What a great pattern! It went together easily. It has a zipper in the side seam which also went in no problem. I love that the entire bodice is lined, no facings poking out, no raw edges (except in the skirt. When I make this again I will use french seams there).

Joanns was out of the polka dot, so I used a little bit of what I had bought the other day. I love the contrast it adds! & check out how cute the back is...

All of you with little girls to sew for should check out this pattern. It also has tops & capris to make. I made a size 2, but the pattern comes in 1-3 and 4-6. Very sweet in these prints. I think it looks like something my mom might have made me back in the 60s!

Happy Easter everyone. I hope the sun is shining where you are.

Friday, April 22, 2011

How is this possible?

Yesterday, my beautiful oldest child, Leigh Anne, turned 21! Seriously? 21? I'm not sure how that happened. And, I suppose now I have to quit telling everyone I am 29. It just doesn't add up! I love her snazzy haircut & can't wait to see her in person in a couple of weeks. Now that she has a life of her own, we don't get much time to just hang out! And I really love the person she is becoming. So confident, hard working & practical. Wow!

I just realized that my first blog post here, almost 3 years ago, was about sending my baby off to college. Now she is a senior (one more semester to go), an experienced journalist (copy editor for the Arizona Republic), has her own apartment and makes me totally proud to be her mom!

Happy Birthday Leigh Anne! I love you.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

I have a lot to learn....

I love to make a little something for my friends for their birthdays. Last year I bought a panel with loads of these little cupcake blocks. I have finally brought it out & cut it up. I am making little mini birthday quilts with it. The first one I just did a grid of diagonal lines to quilt it. Warming up.... Then I took a deep breath, lowered my feed dogs & tried a little stippling. Now, mind you, I have never done this before. I have watched friends, watched you-tube videos, read blogs, books and magazines about free motion quilting but none of this gives you the skill. Trust me on this.

You probably can't tell in this picture (ok, maybe you can, but thanks for being sweet & not leaving me nasty comments about it!) but the one on the left was my first attempt. The stitch lengths are all over the place, tiny tiny to ummm, gigantic. After some reading & practice I think this is mostly due to inconsistent speed. Or maybe not. Who knows.... all I know is the more I do it, the more consistent it gets. Whew! Sample number 2, on the right, is a bit better. However, I am not happy with the jerky shapes I created. I want it all to be smooth & fluid. Sigh.

Suggestions welcome!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

mail for me!

I am constantly discovering new-to-me blogs that make me smile! Not too long ago I found Wendi over at Prsd4tim2. I'm pretty sure I found her in a flickr group for lovers of the new Central Park Line from Moda, which you already know I love! & Wendi does too. Look at this awesome tote she made to give away.... oh, and YES! I was indeed the winner of this pretty bag. Maybe I will use it to carry around my Central Park Sudoku quilt when it's finished? Or it would be a lovely shopping bag.... Wendi also presented me with the Stylish Blogger Award! Isn't she sweet?

I had been awarded this fun award before, by Melissa, so I won't bore you with the details again. If you want to read my response to the award, you can find it here. Thanks Wendi! For the award and the pretty bag. Now all of you, run quick and check out Wendi's pretty blog. You won't be sorry!

Monday, April 18, 2011

jumping on the bandwagon

There has been a lot of blog-talk recently about the new Denyse Schmidt fabrics at Joanns. Of course I had to do my own research..... so I texted my sewing buddy, swung by & picked her up & we headed off to Joanns to see for ourselves what all the hoopla was about. Here is what we found.... Oh they really are lovely! & nice quality fabrics too. We opted to buy the blue/green coordinates (although I am tempted to go back & get the red ones too!). They are priced at $9.99 a yard, pricey for Joanns, but just right with a 50% off coupon. Joellen & I each bought 3 prints with our coupons, then we cut them in half & shared. Perfect! Now, what to make? They look very summery & vintagy to me, I am thinking a simple airy quilt top with white solid maybe? Stay tuned!

Friday, April 15, 2011

more pillows

I promised to share more of the pillows that were swapped at The Quilt Asylum last week..... well Joellen has done a fantastic post over on her blog. I won't redo what she has done, but I will send you over there to see the pictures she took. I did borrow her group shot to share with you here (because what good is a blog post without a picture after all?)

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Pillow Swap

Last night was our pillow swap at The Quilt Asylum. What fun! So many cute pillows, and, you guessed it, once again I forgot my camera! Joellen took pictures of all the pillows and I will link to her post here when she puts them up on her blog. There were also pics taken of all of us together with our pillows. I will share one here when they are available. You might remember several months ago, I received a pincushion in the swap from Emily. It was a sweet little birthday cake which was perfect because I had just celebrated my big birthday. Well, guess whose pillow I received last night? Emily's! It's like she made it just for me. Check out these colors... I love her piecing. She called it "Wonky Spools" So cute! And this great stripe on the back...
Look how pretty it looks in my sewing room!
The next swap (due in June) is a summertime tablerunner. After last night's swap, Emily said to me jokingly "well, what fabrics do you want me to use for your tablerunner?" LOL I would be happy to receive a swap from her every single time! I am already tossing ideas around in my head for the tablerunner I will make. Don't worry, you'll get a sneak peek when it's done!

Friday, April 8, 2011

start to finish Friday

Have you seen Moda's Sudoku quilt kids in the stores? Joellen bought me one for my birthday in February & I've been itching to work on it. I love Sudoku puzzles and, well, you already know I love quilting! So this morning I dug it out and completed the puzzle..... Then I laid out the pieces to match the puzzle. I love the fabric, it's Kate Spain's Central Park....
I checked and rechecked the pieces a hundred times to make sure it was right! In case you have not done Sudoku puzzles before, the idea is that each "nine patch" has one each of nine different fabrics. Then, each row has one each of the fabrics as does each column.
I started sewing the blocks together at about 10 this morning, and by 4 this afternoon I had the whole top DONE! The solid I chose for the sashings and borders is Moda Bella Solid in Stone. It looks very gray in this photo, in reality it's more of a putty color. I love it! My plan is to make a scrappy backing & have it quilted, then add a scrappy binding. So proud of myself finishing a whole quilt top in one day!

I hope you did something fun today too.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Baby shower gifts

My friend Julie is expecting a baby girl next month! She asked me to make her a diaper bag. Of course I said yes! She went with me to pick out the fabrics & trims.... I'm really happy with the way it turned out. I put gray canvas on the bottom to help it stay clean. Oodles of pockets on the inside & a hook for Mommy's keys (or baby's!)
And a bottle pocket on the outside end. This was an experiment & it worked out great.
Then I used some of the leftover fabric to decorate a onsie & make a little pair of ruffly pants.
What a fun project. I hope baby likes it!

Monday, April 4, 2011


Every spring, on a Sunday after worship, our church family has a potluck then we all go out on the church lawn & fly kites! This year God gave us a beautiful, sunny & WINDY day to fly our kites.... Guess who was at the other end of this Buzz Lightyear kite?
Yup! It was Steve! That $3 kite from Walmart turned out to be a good investment. The High School boys had it way up high for quite a while.
Ally was helping the little girls with their kites. So awesome to see her running around with all the kids on the lawn. That's something she hasn't been able to do in a long time.
I enjoyed watching all of the kids work together to get their kites in the sky.
And it was my friend, Laura's, Birthday! Happy Birthday Laura! Great kite flying my friend!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Another Birdie Stitches block done!

I've never done a block of the month before, so when I decided to do the Birdie Stitches blocks I was determined to do them all in a timely manner! So far, so good. Block four is DONE! Downloaded on the first, stitched on the second and blogged on the third. Go me! I just love these little birds!