A Mile Away

Remember that old saying, "You could see her coming from a mile away?" It might apply to the bag I finished today. 
Bright. Cheerful. LOUD. 
I fell in love with these bright, red poppies on last year's Central Coast Quilt Run, so I bought enough fabric to make this bag.
But when I started cutting the pieces last night, I kept thinking of changes I wanted to make . . . . like using muslin instead of batting so it wouldn't be so thick; 

doing French seams (!!) so the inside would look more finished; 
and top-stitching the seams down (vertical lines are quilting, horizontal are top-stitching).
I ditched the binding around the handles and bag top - I turned and top-stitched the handles, and gave the bag top a rolled hem edge. I kept the box corners, which I love.  
The only part I'm not happy with is how the straps are attached. 
Pretty sure I'm Definitely going to rip these off and try again. I thought about fussy-cutting one of the large flowers, then appliqueing it over the handle, but I think it would just look weird. But that's just a little thing. Overall, not a bad job for a beginning-ish sewist. 

P.S. This is my project for Sew Crazy Monthly Challenge for March, and my UFO Twelve in Fourteen challenge for 52 Quilts in 52 Weeks. Whoohoo!!  @CrazyLittleProjects  #SewCrazyChallenge


Craft Happens

It hasn't all been kitchen remodeling around here; some crafting has occurred - I just forgot to blog it. I'm teaching at Eweniversity again this year (Saturday, April 26) and believe it or not - two of my five samples are done and in the shop!

For my Amigurumi 101 class -
a sweet little octopus 
with spirally legs.

These coasters are fast and easy, and a great way to experiment with crocheted cables.
The first one took me about 45 minutes to make; the second and third, less than 30 minutes each, which makes them perfect for a 50 minute class. Love how cheerful they are - so perfect for spring. And I can picture them in other colors for other holidays . . . Christmas, Thanksgiving, July 4th . . . . . Pretty sure I'll be making more of these.


Outta Here!

Next step in the kitchen renovation -
bottom cabinets are going,

Next up: floor tile, then replace old cabinets with hubby-made new cabinets.
In the meantime, I think we'll be eating out, at least for the next few days.



Reason #537 why it's good to have a handy hubby: 
when things make you cranky at 10:00 pm  -
like a cutting table that's too low and makes your back ache - 
he knows how to make it alllllll better.


Kitchen Update!

Hubby's on a roll! He's built and installed the pull-out shelves for the pantry;
lined them with easy-to-clean, peel-and-stick floor tiles;
and ripped out the next section of cabinets.
I should have spent today re-loading the pantry, but instead, I worked on my 40 Bags in 40 Days challenge (here). 
Lots of progress! And one little, bitty set-back -
I accidentally ripped the fold-out leg off my sewing table. You can bet I was NOT a happy camper - especially since I was underneath the table, holding it up, while Leia ran to get PopPop to rescue me. I'm sure I'll be able to laugh about it some day. 


Dinner With Mr. T

Have you ever noticed how much more you see when there's a kid around? 
We had dinner with Bre's family in Calabasas last night, our usual half-way point between their house and ours.
When we were done eating, Mr. T wanted to explore all the bridges and streams. 
Nothing usual about that . . . . except . . . 

he found turtles!
Lots and lots of turtles! 
The turtles we grown-ups had ever noticed before.
Let me down PopPop - I want turtles!

I knew there were koi - everybody has koi. But turtles?? Mr. T was beyond excited.
I'm still surprised he didn't fall head-first into the pond.
We spent a lot of time enjoying the turtles Mr T and all his excitement.
I'm thinking Leia and Leanne would be just as excited to see real, live turtles!    


Crocodile for Rachel

Hey Rach, guess what?
Your shawl is done!
Bad news though . . . . .
Leanne has claimed it for herself!
Rachel's been asking for this shawl for over two years. 
It wasn't that I didn't want to make it . . . . exactly . . . . I just knew it was going to take a looooooong time to finish. 
But I'm teaching this as a class on Tuesday, so I needed it in the shop last week by today for a sample.
I think it's pretty spectacular - and the back is just as pretty as the front.
Once I get it back, I may add several more rows so it will be longer and wider, allowing Rach more options when she wears it. (Feel free to chime in with opinions, Rachel . . . .)


Progress Report

I've been keeping my 40 Bags in 40 Days stuff off the main page (click the link in the sidebar if you want to follow along), but I'm so pleased with this week's progress, I have to share.

This is the main counter in my craft room, as it was last week.
And this is the same counter today - 
BIG change.  I found receipts dated from 2007; projects from 2009. All of it is g.o.n.e.

I still have some organizing to do - these cabinets hold spinning supplies (on the right) and weaving yarns (on the left) that need to be sorted and re-homed.
A small box of stuff from the counter still needs sorting; the remaining curtains need to go in the dryer and be re-hung. Then I'll tackle the big bookshelves (on the left in the top 2 photos). And as a reward when all that's done? 
I get to set up my new sewing station. I set a goal of having everything else done before I allowed myself to work on this. Cause once it's done? It's sewing time


Of Course It Did

Hubby spent most of Monday
installing the new pantry -
and most of Tuesday swearing at the water valve that started leaking the minute he turned his back.
The drip slip may look weird but it works!

Guess who's taking Leanne to visit the plumbing store tomorrow?


Kitchen Update

While I spent most of the weekend teaching (3 classes in 2 days; whoot!) hubby gets the award for most work accomplished. Remember the pantry I cleared out?
It is gone, gone, gone,
the wall repainted,
and all is ready for the new, greatly improved cabinetry to be installed.
Kitchen progress is soooooo exciting!