Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Adorable-ness Overload

Have you ever noticed that when something is really really cute (like a puppy or a baby)
your voice goes up an octive when you say
"oh my cute!"???
Well that's exactly how I feel about this adorable little messenger bag!
Every time I talk about it my voice gets higher :)
It's a scaled down version of a large messenger bag and I made it using another awesome pattern by Keyka Lou :)

On the interior there is a large pocket, divided into 3 smaller ones, perfect for my cel phone and a pen  and maybe a few organic lolly pops for good little grandchildren :)

The backside has a large pocket with a velcro closure
to keep it secure.

There are elasticized pockets on both sides of the bag perfect for my keys on one side and Spry chewing gum on the other side that I MUST always have on hand for my 2 oldest grandsons.
(the first thing out of their mouths when they see me is
"NANA!!!!...(pause).... did you bring us any gum?")

On the frontside there is another full sized pocket that is completely covered by the flap so there is no need for velcro here.

At first glance, I though it might be a bit small, but once I put all my stuff in it I realized it's just perfection! Don't get me wrong....I luvs me a big 'ol bag, but in my day to day life I enjoy carrying a smaller purse. I still have my large tote bags for outings with the kids or shopping :) I've noticed that the bigger my purse is, the more junk I tend to stuff in it. So I've recently been carrying smaller handbags.
This pattern may look involved but Keyka Lou did a wonderful job of breaking it down step by step and using lots of photographs to make it a pleasant sewing experience. This project was definately FTS (fun to sew) and I'm already thinking about which fabrics to use next time around!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

"While You Were Sleeping" GIVEAWAY!!!!

So guess what happened while I was sleeping????
I woke up to 302 followers!
How did that happen?
I am so overwhelmed at the lovely comments
and all the encouragement I receive here on my little blog :)
Thank you all soooo much!
So I decided to send this "Owlie"
to live with one of you.
This Giveaway is open to the U.S.A., Canada and Europe

The Rules of Adoption are:
1. Mandatory : you must be a follower of my blog (I will check :)
2. Leave me a comment telling me you are a follower,
also tell me a little about you, what State or Country you live in and how you found my blog.

You have until Midnight September 5th to enter and you only
need to enter once.
 I will choose a winner with the help of the random number generator on September 6th
and I will post the winner that morning.

Good luck
and Thanks again everyone!!!

Monday, August 29, 2011

The "bers" are coming.....the "bers" are coming!

I finished my table runner this morning and not a moment too soon!
This will most likely be the last project I do that is just for myself.
There are only 3 days left in August and then we head into
the "bers"....(September, October, November & December)
My absolute favorite time of year!!!
There will be all kinds of fun going on with all the holidays
and birthdays coming up and I have lots to do for Christmas
(as usual :)
There are only 16 Saturdays left until Christmas Eve
and my sewing list is long:
Super Hero Costumes for dressing up in
Friendly Dragons for sleeping with
Quilts for snuggling
Mug Rugs for enjoying a hot cup of coffee or tea
The list is long and I can't even tell you what the rest
of the items are until after Christmas
 and everyone has received them.

I used a charm pack of fabric from Lori Holt's Sew Cherry line and I fell in love with it as soon as I laid eyes on it!
She has the most adorable blog by the way....
It co-ordinated so well with the tiny polka dots :)
I hand quilted this runner with #5 Perle cotton floss in red
and used buttery yellow cotton sateen for the backing.
I like the way the stitching shows up on the backside :)

Well, I'm off to make my list of projects that need to be done
and in what order they need to be finished.
I'm actually going to try and finish everything
early this year.....don't laugh!
For once, I'd love to be done the week before Christmas.
I can dream can't I ?
What will you be working on for the next 16 weeks?

Thursday, August 25, 2011

A little baby love & a little perspective :)

Today is Thursday, and for any of you that read my blog on a regular basis you know how I love Thursdays! On most Thursdays I can hang out in my pajamas all day sewing if I choose to! So today I cut out a few projects and made 3 more sets of pacifier leashes and bags for my shop. It's kinda nice being a lazy pajama-wearing domestic goddess sometimes :)
And last night I finished a small cross stitch project I've been working on for a blogger friend who is going through a hard time right now. It never ceases to amaze me how something so simple as "Count your many blessings" can bring my attitude right back around to where it should always be.
Even on a bad day, I am blessed beyond measure.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

I may need an intervention.......

I went to M & L this morning just to get some seam binding.........

and then I heard this fabric calling out to me. Faintly at first, and then it just got louder and louder until I had no choice but to put it in my cart! At least I came home and made an apron right away....

It's not like I bought it for no reason....right?

Do I need a fabric intervention?

I think I might......

I'm going to make a promise to myself not to buy any fabric at all during the entire month of September.
I will only use fabric I already own and try to make a dent in my stash...... name is Karen....I'm a fabric-aholic.


Tuesday, August 23, 2011

A Flock of Owlies and My New BFF Mrs. Meyers :)

These little Owlies are on their way to my shop,
 actually 2 of them are already spoken for,
so I'm working on 2 more.
For me, the fun part is sewing on the eyes :)
It's like they take on a personality....I know....I'm weird.

And now on to something completely different:
Let me just say, that I do not receive any compensation from Mrs. Meyers.
This is not a commercial.
I'm just sharing something wonderful that I've recently discovered with you.
I am doing my best to replace all my personal hygiene items and household supplies with products that are free of harmful chemicals. I wanted to give Mrs. Meyers a try based on the great reviews I read on (which is where I order this from) She has 4 "aromatherapy" scents: Lavender, Lemon Verbena, Geranium and Basil. I first purchased the Lemon Verbena scrub to clean my kitchen sink.
Let me just say first of all that I do not enjoy scrubbing my sink.....that is until now! The smell just makes me soooo happy that I find myself cleaning the sink WAY more often! So with my recent order from Vitacost, I bought the Geranium laundry detergent. (I've been a Tide girl for years) It's safe for use in my HE machine and the smell is fantastic! When I opened the washer door to take out my clean clothes it was like breathing in pure joy! The clothes, even the hub's old white undershirts were so soft. I mean I could feel the difference after just one wash! I also gave the dish soap a run....and it's amazing too! Just a small amount washed all my pots & pans and it cuts grease like nobodies business! So now I can't wait for my dryer sheets to run out so I can buy the Geranium scented ones!  I've decided to use the Lemon Verbena scented products in the kitchen and the Geranium in the laundry and bathroom. My hubby laughed at the "aromatherapy", but let me tell you these things smell so great that they actually put me in a better mood! They do cost a bit more than what I've been using, for example I usually get 64 load Tide for about 10 or 11 bucks, and Mrs. Meyers is $13.00. The same goes for the rest of the products, and I know I can make my own laundry detergent (my lovely daughter-in-law does it) but I am totally hooked on the wonderful smells and the results!
I'm off to wash my bedsheets :) *sigh*

Monday, August 22, 2011

Family Matters

I know I've mentioned before that my parents immigrated to the United States from Holland when I was just 18 months old. The bulk of my family, however is located in Germany.
 I just found out yesterday that my beautiful cousin Maika has been reading my blog from Germany!
(Hello Maika!)
How cool is that?
The internet makes the world a smaller place for sure!
So in honor of family I decided to share a few pictures that I took last Thursday.
Brandon & April's new home doesn't really have any landscaping in the backyard which
is the greatest thing the boys could ever imagine.
As Elijah calls it, it is now "the Mud Swamp"!!!!
Or as Brandon likes to call it : "The Summer of Mud 2011"
1 garden hose + a large patch of dirt + 4 little boys =
pure glorious fun!

Little Miss Sofia is all smiles!

Sofie and Evie just hanging out together.....safely away from the mud :)

These are serious men at work!

This picture just speaks for itself!

What could be better than jumping in the Mud Swamp with your cousins?

Our beautiful daughter, with her beautiful daughter :)

Soaking their feet in the mud hole while they discuss where to dig next :)

Clean hands to eat lunch....but the feet are a totally different matter!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Friday Night Sew In #4

Another FNSI done :) I'd love to say that I had lots of fun, but it would be more accurate to say that it's a good thing I was sewing alone. I had to fight the urge to hurt someone!
This pattern was a challenge from beginning to end (and NOT in a good way). It could very well be my lack of experience in the quilting realm, but when the math doesn't work (like when it says you need a charm pack of 42 pcs and to use 31 charms to make the prairie points and you actually need 36 and there are no more left so you have to go through your stash to find fabrics that will co-ordinate!) and when diagrams in the pattern are impossible to create (like when the picture shows a perfect square that you are supposed to come up with and you have 2 HST that measure 5" by 2 1/2" and the center triangle is a 4"), then I get a bit "spicy". If they wanted me to center the 4" triangle onto the 5" side of the HST and square it up afterwards....then show me that picture, not a perfect square!
I'm just glad that this was not my first experience with quilting.
I may have never tried again.
OK.....I'm done whining and complaining :)
In my own defense, I am very hormonal right now..........

The quilt pattern I used for Evie's quilt was so well written and VERY first time quilter friendly.
It even taught me how to use my square ruler!
 It was so much fun to sew!
I highly recommend SweetJane patterns. Check out her etsy shop and you'll fall in love too!
So here is the finished quilt top for my table runner just waiting to be sandwiched. I'm planning on hand quilting it in all red perle cotton. It came out cute, from a distance......just don't look too closely :)

Friday, August 19, 2011

It's Friday!!!

Well I went out and bought another piece of fabric to complete my apron :)
No more "wonky-ness" to drive me crazy!
Also I'm super excited that tonight is the Friday Night Sew In!
Did you sign up? It's not too late.....
 just click on the link in the upper right hand corner
and join the fun!
Tonight I'll be working on a table runner for my dining table.
I'm using the fun charm pack I bought at the Quilt Festival.
I've got all my pieces cut and I'm ready to go!
I'm so excited to get started.......
when does "night" officially start anyways?

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Yet another Owlie :)

 I have to say that I absolutely love that all the children at our church call me "Nana" :)
I feel like a get to have an extra helping of grandchildren :)
It's like an extra scoop of your favorite ice cream....who's gonna say "No" to that?

 Until recently, there was an entire herd of little boys at church (most of them are my grandsons) and little Miss Natalia was the only girl in the sea of testosterone! But you don't have to worry about this little beauty......she can definitely hold her own :)
It's hard to believe that she is going to be 2 years old. She has such a fun personality and she loves being a girl. She loves her dollies and she loves having a purse. I wanted to make something fun for her birthday and when I saw this adorable Owl Zipper Purse pattern in the Quilts & More magazine (Winter 2010 - got it on clearance) I knew it would be perfect! The pattern is actually made for adults, but instead of buttons for the eyes, I stitched on felt eyes and beak and I made the strap way shorter to make it more toddler friendly.
It's a super fun project to sew and I learned a new technique as well! I'll be making more of these for the shop, some with Owlie faces and some without. Makes a great cross body bag for carrying just a few items like cash or credit cards when you go shopping and don't want to carry your full sized purse. And the zipper keeps everything nice and safe :) 

That reminds me.....I need to order more zippers..........

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

The "Wonky" Factor.......

This is an apron I'm working on and I was pretty careful when
I cut out the blender fabric to keep everything lined up.......
at least I thought I was!
 *ugh* I cut it "wonky" and now I have to take this apart and get more fabric.
I know I"ll find something else to do with this piece.
I guess this is why my seam ripper and I are such close friends :)

I did manage to sew the final of my 3 personal grocery bags this morning before breakfast :)
(gosh....that makes me sound a bit crazy to sew before I even eat breakfast!)

And yesterday I made these fun pillow covers for
 Brandon & April's new home.
I used an envelope opening on the backside with velcro strips to hold it closed so she can wash them when she needs to . The fabric in the background will be used for the other 2 pillow covers I hope to finish today. They are larger square pillows. These will look really cute on their brown leather couches.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011


So this is what I've done today so far. I made another fun grocery bag from that wonderful Keykalou pattern, 2 zipper bags, and a pacifier leash set with the matching bag.

 How is this procrastination you might ask?

Because NONE of these things are projects I SHOULD be working on right now. I have a few things that I need to get done either today or tomorrow and of course I'm leaving it all to the last minute.

That's how I roll :)

Monday, August 15, 2011

Last week's projects :)

I'm not gonna lie.....last week I was feeling "yucky". Lots of headaches and no energy at all.
I did have the pleasure of going to my favorite fabric store for Home Decor fabrics with my lovely daughter in law. She needed drapery fabric and I didn't really "need" anything, but these little beauties called out to me so the ended up in my cart. They are cotton canvas and I paid $3.99 - $5.99 per yard.
This is what I've made so far from my new fabrics. Another re-usable grocery bag from that awesome Keykalou pattern You can purchase them directly through her website for immediate pdf download.

I made 17 more flannel baby wipes for my grandson Gabriel :)

I received this wonderful package filled with nuggets of goodness from Bobbi over at Crafty Vegas Mom from the Friday Night Sew In that I actually won a while back! It was so much fun to receive a package out of the blue! I won the Moda Bake Shop little rolls of fabric and she made that adorable pin cushion, a recipe card book and a cute notebook with a K on it :) You should check out her blog and don't forget to click the link on the upper right hand side of my blog to sign up for this month's FNSI. It's this Friday the 19th!

AND I cut my fabrics to start on the Happy Camper quilt! I can't wait to get started with the sewing! I have more cuts to make later today....but I'm really loving the entire process!
I wonder what this week will bring?????

Saturday, August 13, 2011

My little Sofia's Quilt is done :)

I can't believe that my second quilt is actually done! I had so much fun making this :) My daughter in law, April picked out these great fabrics by Riley Blake from the Sugar & Spice collection. I purchased every print in the line that was pink and green. I added pink gingham and a pink & green floral  that had the same colors in it. 

The front side of the quilt has 4 hand appliqued flowers. The largest one is the one stitched in red.

I added another hand appliqued flower to the backside as  a quilt label :)
That way Sofie can always know that her Nana stitched lots of love into her quilt!

I used the outline of one of the larger flowers on the fabric to make a cardboard template and used that to hand quilt flowers onto every other square. With 9 rows across and 9 rows down it worked out that there is a quilted flower on every corner :)

Tomorrow at church I get to give this beauty away :)
I can't wait to snap a photo of little Miss Sofie on her quilt!

So now that the 2 little princesses have their quilts done, it's time to get started on my 3rd adventure!
These yummy fabrics are from American Jane, called Happy Camper :) I can't wait to get busy cutting into this lovely bundle of goodness! I won't say who it's for, just in case they happen to read this blog, but I'll be posting updates as I go along.