Wednesday, August 27, 2014

A paper pieced finish

I don't have much to show for the first half of the week.

This is a block that I tested for Angela over at Sewing With Squeak .  She put out a call for pattern testers around the middle of the month.  I chose this one and a turtle,which I have yet to test.  This one will be modpodged on to a hard backed canvas and then be gifted to my dad.  He used to be stationed at Eldred Rock Lighthouse in AK during his time in the Coast Guard.

Although this looks nothing like that lighthouse I think he will still like it.

When making the basket for my swap partner (scroll down to see that post) I had planed to use this second geese piece for the back pocket.  However I made a mistake and had to use fabric glue in one spot,just down from the second goose on the left next to the boarder.  So this is going to be used  to make a zip pouch for...

This Soldier(Gil's girlfriend,Carla) who is deployed right now.  Today she received the goodie box I sent her last Tuesday!  She texted me early this morning to let me know it had finally arrived.

Recently my sis texted me  a few photos of Axton enjoying the quilt I made him!  Apparently it is much loved!

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Around the World Blog Hop

Last Sunday night my friend Melissa from Sew BitterSweet Designs asked me to participate in this hop.  Melissa and I met in an online quilting bee and have been fast friends ever since.  We actually met in person August 2012!

The purpose of this blog hop is to introduce you to some wonderful New to you,bloggers that you have not yet had the pleasure of meeting.

First I will tell you a little bit about me that you may or may not know,then I will be sending you off to meet/visit three wonderful bloggers I am happy to call my friends!

About me:

Although my mom is a talented sewist,I did not learn to sew from her.  My first experience with sewing was in Home Economics class in HS.  Where I made a velour top for mom,which she loved and wore for many years afterwords.

I have sewed off and on since then,mostly off especially during my two wonderful kids younger years. Working a full time job,I wanted to spend my free time with them.  That is not to say that I didn't sew,just that I didn't sew much.  Until they reached HS themselves,at which point my love affair with sewing was rekindled!

My mom (Betty)with the quilt I made her in 2012.

What are you working on...

I just finished a swap where we each made our own version of the 241 bag...right now I am working on another swap item

This is the exterior of the basket for my secret partner.  Of course I also have a quilt top,and two paper pieced blocks that need to be finished by the end of the month!

How does my work differ from others in my genre?

That is really a tough one for me to answer!  The only thing I can say about this question is that although I may be making the same thing as others,I always feel the need to change it up somehow,to make it uniquely mine.

For example,my 241 swap bag,I added grommets along the bottom and beading accents along the tops of the pockets and in the center of the bag.

Why do I create?

In a word Therapy!  Creating is my way to relax after a long day at work,my stress reliever when the world is closing in,and I create because it makes me Happy and keeps me sane!  I love the feeling of accomplishment after finishing a project.  The best part of creating is the feeling of sheer joy/happiness I feel when I am able to use my sewing talents to help others.

Here are the three wonderful bloggers I will be sending you off to visit/meet next Monday September 1rst.

I meet Jamie from busy bee quilts in an online sewing bee,last year we meet in person at Fabric Fest! She has such a great eye for great color combos,she is always working on one quilt or another,and she has some mad quilting skills too!

Daphne,blogs over at Ivy,Phyllis and Me!(we have not had the pleasure of meeting in person)  She whips up the most scrumptious and eye appealing dishes,I have an ever growing list of recipes to try!  She also tells the best stories before each recipe she posts.

Do you like to paper piece,or sew bags?  Well Angela,from Sewing With Squeak has been letting me test some of her paper pieced patterns lately(the two mentioned blocks that need to be finished this month are just two of many).  Last month I tested her treasure chest pattern!  She is also running the Big City Bags SAL that I am participating in!  She sews a wide array of things,from quilts to clothes,and recently

(photo source Angela's blog sewing with squeak)

she made this super cute little bed for her puppy!

Thank you for stopping by,I hope enjoyed your visit to my little corner of blog land!  Be sure to check out the three talented ladies next Monday too!

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Swing & swap

This month for the Big City Bags SAL we can make either the Lucky Denver Mint bag,the Chandelier swing bag,or both!  So far...

I have finished one swing bag!  For this one I used a couple FQ's of Flea Market Fancy and a coral blender for the exterior top of the bag and the strap as well.

A peak inside...

The back side has a zippered pocket,since I only had a 7 inch zipper I just altered the pocket size accordingly.
This is the second swing bag I have made and although it is a smaller bag I love it.  The one main issue for me making this bag has been sewing in the bottom of the bag exterior and lining.  That being said it has not been a huge issue.  My feeling is that with more practice I will eventually get the kinks worked out,and then this bag will be a breeze to sew up!


This is the 241 bag for my secret swap partner.  Last month I joined a couple swaps over on flickr,this one is for the Secret tote swap round 5.

My partner requested a bag made in fall colors or earth tones,she has been pretty quiet,so I am crossing my fingers that she likes the bag created for her.  It is hard to see in this photo but,I added a little bit of beading at the center of the bag and along the top edge of the exterior pockets.

Along the bottom of the bag I included four grommets with a bit of blueish fabric peeking out to accent the blue dots on the main fabric.

She also requested a longer handle/strap then the pattern calls for.  While rummaging around for some hardware to include on the bag I found this belt with rivets all down the center,so the hardware search was abandoned.  I think it ties in nicely with the grommets across the bottom of the bag.  Personally I am pretty excited with how this one turned out!

If you have this pattern and have not sewed up a bag with it yet,you should!  Even though I didn't get the placement for my exterior zip correct,that is okay because it lets the bird print take center stage.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Let the Preserving begin...

Last year I did a series on preserving,if you are new around here,or to home canning/preserving take a few minutes to check out this post on preserving,it is a preserving 101.

This year the summer squash has been producing like crazy,which is a very good thing!  But,what do you do with all that zucchini?  Of course there is always the favorite around here,zucchini bread,or zucchini muffins,but today we will be making something else entirely.

Zucchini Relish:

Ingredients needed...

  • 2 cups chopped zucchini (about 3 medium size)
  • 1 cup chopped onion (about 1 medium)
  • 1 cup chopped bell pepper (I like color so am using three different peppers)
  • 2 Tablespoons salt (I am using canning,but regular table salt will work)
  • 1 3/4 cups sugar
  • 2 teaspoons celery seed
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seed
  • 1 cup cider vinegar

Combine zucchini,onion,and bell peppers;sprinkle with salt;

cover with cold water.  Let stand 2 hours.  Drain;rinse and drain again thoroughly.  Combine,remaining ingredients in a large pot.  Bring to a boil.  Add vegetables;simmer for 10 minutes.  Pack hot relish into hot,sterilized jars,leaving 1/4 inch head space.  Remove air bubbles.  Adjust lids and rings,and place on jars.  Process in a water bath canner at recommended time for your altitude.  (sorry,not photos of the last steps,but the above link covers that)

This recipe yields about 4 half pints.  The jar on the bottom left in this photo is a half pint,the other four are pints.  I have made several batches already,and just used larger jars.  If I had used half pints there would be nine pictured.  Of course we have already been enjoying some...

of our homemade relish!

Thursday, August 7, 2014

A finish and a goal for August

A while back I came across the 241 tote pattern and liked the style so much that I purchased the pattern.

When Mara over at Secretly Stitching posted about the swap I jumped in and joined,and am so glad that I did!

This is my tester that I sewed up last night!  I love how it turned out,even though I didn't have any coordinating zips,so didn't add any zippered pockets on this one.  If you have been thinking of giving this pattern a try you should!  It is a very straight forward pattern and sews up pretty quickly,especially if you don't add any of the zippered pockets.

I did add one slip pocket on the inside of the bag,and of course it has the two outside pockets.  I added a couple inches to the shoulder strap.  For the strap I also used some scrap pieces of shape flex 101 to make it a little more sturdy.

August Goal:

So my goal for this month is to get this flimsy/quilt top finished,quilted and bound.  Not sure if that is going to happen because it is shaping up to be a pretty busy month,so we shall see...

Linking up to:
Sew Fresh quilts,Let's Bee Social #32
ALYOF at Sew BitterSweet

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Projects and swaps...

This past weekend I was at a craft fair both days,so no big projects.  In between customers I did do some hand work though.

These are mini yoyo Christmas trees,I just need to add a little something at the top of the tree.  Maybe a little jingle bell or something.  I took some little ribbon spools and hot glued a piece of batting to them and then added the tree on top.  These would make cute little place markers at a holiday table,or as a tree ornament.

Since I had some ribbon cut and ready,the other project for the weekend was a few pinecone ornaments.

They still need their toppers,but are almost complete.

Last month I tested a paper pieced block for Angela over at Sewing With Squeak.  This was the treasure chest block,she also had a sea horse and a castle.

These are a fabric pull for the 241 tote swap that I joined over on flickr.  I am hoping that my partner will like something here.  What do you think?  I also joined another swap for a zippered pouch or a basket,but have not pulled fabrics for that one yet.

Since I have not sewn up this pattern before,that is my project for this evening.