Friday, April 29, 2016


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At the beginning of the month I was in a purple mood.  I'm not sure what caused it.  I don't use purple very much for myself but I suddenly had an intense desire to create something using purple.  I think it was my desire to hurry along spring during one of our early-spring cold spells.

While the kids were staying with Grandma and Grandpa I created this little number.  I used the free paper-pieced economy block pattern from Wombat quilts.  The individual blocks are 3" square.  I love the mini blocks and paper-piecing makes them so much easier.  

Soon after my purple-frenzied creation I started noticing purple all over the neighborhood.  Welcome spring!  Even the weeds are pretty this time of year.  The colors of spring are definitely my favorite part of the season.

The kids and I went on a photo safari to take pretty flower pictures.  Enjoy.  

Some sort of Crab Apple

Blue Bell

Creeping Charlie (weed)





Lambs Ear


Unknown bush

Some sort of Crab Apple

Burning Bush

Creeping Phlox

Creeping Phlox

Creeping Phlox


Unknown tree debris

Violets (weed)

Creeping Charlie (weed)

Creeping Charlie (weed)

Unknown Flowering Tree

Unknown Flowering Tree

'Helicopters' from Maple Tree

Now what do I do with this?  My original plan was to make it into a pillow.  Now I'm sort of leaning towards mini quilt.  I saw (somewhere) someone had a whole wall of mini quilts in their sewing room.  I like that idea.  So.... mini-quilt or pillow?

This quilt top came together pretty quickly.  I used a technique I learned from Wombat Quilts and kept the paper on the back of the squares.  It made it so much easier to match seams.

Has spring arrived in you neighborhood?


Thursday, April 21, 2016

Birthday Clothes

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Last month was birthday month at our house.  Both boys celebrated birthdays (2 weeks apart).  It is the only time of the year I get tired of cake.  By the time we've finished eating the first birthday cake its time to make another.  yay!  My birthday is the month before (February) and Husbands is the month after (April) so really its birthday season around here. 

Obviously, the boys needed new outfits to celebrate their days.  It's a bit of a tradition for me.  You can see previous years here, here, here, here, and here.  I usually try to find a theme and this year's was birds.  Birds are their new favorite kinds of animals.

Mini Man's birthday was first.  He turned the big 4.  He is very proud of his age and tells everyone he see, "I'm four.  I know everything"  

Mini Man got a generic bird-print raglan tee.  The print is from the Idle Wild Collection for Riley Blake.  The pattern is from the book Sewing for Boys.  The stripe sleeve is from my stash.  I freezer-paper stenciled a number 4 on the sleeve to indicate the year.

Little Man's birthday followed.  He turned 7 this year.  Holy cow.  How is he 7?  He's like a regular kid, my baby no longer.  

Little Man got an owl-print raglan tee.  He is obsessed with owls.  The print is from the Wonderland Collection for Art Gallery.  The pattern is from the book Sewing for Boys.  I freezer-paper stenciled a seven on his sleeve.

The pants were made using the Aviator Pants pattern by Winter Wear Designs.  This is not the first time I've used this pattern.  This is the first time I've used the contrast triangle and ankle bands.  I love how they turned out.  

The fabric is French Terry.  I used a contrasting color for the triangle at the bottom.  I chose blue for the main fabric (I had a large cut in my stash) and gray for the contrast (scraps in my stash).  The gray is to match the tees.  The ankle and waist bands are gray rib-knit.

I added zippers to the back pockets and a draw-string to the waistband.  I also used the overlock stitch on my sewing machine on seams.  The overlock stitch takes forever, but it was so worth it.  I love the athletic-look it adds.

The kids like the outfits and have been wearing them as often as they can.  Mini Man has already worn a hole in one of the knees in his pants.  Perhaps French Terry wasn't the best choice of fabric.  Next time I'll have to pick something sturdier.


Friday, March 4, 2016

Ducks in a Row

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I've had a vague idea for a quilt like this in my head for a while.  The inspiration came from some odd places.  I bought new towels a couple years ago:

I really liked the geometric design and the orderliness of it.

I also bought a new shower curtain:

Again, the geometric design.  I also like the simple, two-tone color scheme and it is much more chaotic.  

While working on my Butterfly Baby quilt last fall I really liked the mustard-yellow and cerulean combination on the back along with the fuchsia binding.  I liked the play on primary colors.  And somewhere along the way the black-and-white hounds-tooth from the bottom left of the butterfly quilt became part of the inspiration as well.

I sketched a few ideas and ultimately ended up with a version of this.  (I'm not sure where my sketch ended up.)  Originally I wanted all the neutral triangles to be facing the same way.  After my blocks were completed (6-inch half-square triangles) I ended up with the current design.  I like the chaotic neutral section and the orderly primary-color section.  It is a fun contrast.

I mostly used Kona Peacock for the blue, Kona Curry for the yellow, and Kona Pomegranate and Sangria for the pink along with low-volume prints that matched the respective colors.

The neutrals are all black, white, and gray prints.

For the backing I used a polka-dot print.  I love the gradation of dots.  It is silver and black.  I would have preferred black and white or gray, but this was all I could find.  

I quilted waves and bound the whole thing with more fuchsia.  

I love how this quilt turned out.  I only wish it were a bit bigger.  It is lap-sized (~60"x72") and could probably stand to be a bit wider and longer.  It's hard to fit more than one person under it on the couch.

It was nice to make something just for myself for the sake of creativity.