Wonky Blocks

 Leia and I headed out early this morning,
Note the crocheted sparkly purse and the tie dye shirt we made last week. We're stylin'!

on our way to the dollar store - for craft supplies, although a red wig somehow found its way into our cart - 
Joann's for more craft supplies - including a wooden treasure chest somebody couldn't live without -
lunch with Auntie ReeRee 
and Osh for yet more craft stuff and, oh yeah, weed killer for Pop.

And I still had the energy time to make today's block-a-day* 
to go with yesterday's set for a grand total of 8 blocks now.
Woot - closer every day to a queen size quilt for our bed.

*Not happy with how these blocks turned out. Taking them tomorrow to the quilt doctor - aka my pal Debbie - to see what I'm doing wrong. The center points are better but the small squares are just wonky.   


My Best Advice

Me and Rippit Jack have spent some quality time together tonight, which got me thinking about quilting tools and recommendations. My best advice for new quilters? Buy a quality seam ripper - one that works for you and that you like using. Chances are very good you'll be ripping some seams and it's a whole lot easier when you don't hate the one you're with.
For instance . . . I ripped out a row on tonight's block twice, trying to get the center points to match up, never noticing until I went to do the final pressing, that I'd sewn the entire block wrong.
Yeah, quality time with Jack, coming right up.

Much better the second third eighteenth time.


A Very Good Day

Went bead shopping - and lunching - with my SIL and her bestie, Vickie and Ellen, and their buddies from the Antelope Valley area. Don't get to see them very often so had to take advantage of the opportunity - three bead stores plus Urbane Cafe (portobello sandwich - yummmm) in less than 4 hours. Tired but happy - and very glad I don't have to drive 3 hours to get back home. 
Came home to find the window installers doing their thing. Love my pretty new kitchen windows. The installers will have to come back to finish up once the counter-tops are in place, but that should be minor. Progress!
Finished the second block for my block-a-day-along and cut out the pieces for tomorrow's block. I think I'll get more done if I have the pieces all ready to go each day, so all I have to do is sit down and sew.
Pretty flowers from one of the bead shops. Love these colors. 



Quilt Block-a-Day

My first Shoo Fly block -
in Aunt Marti's summer block-a-day-along. My plan is to use up some of the fat quarters, and fat quarter bundles, I can't seem to resist buying. Since I know I can't make a block every day - the summer is just too busy with little girl projects - I'm hoping to make two reverse blocks on the days when I do sew.
Aunt Marti's sample

That will use up an entire fat quarter and get me either a large quilt with both types of blocks or two smaller "opposite" quilts. By the time summer ends, I should have enough blocks to make something


Tie Dye

Joann's is a very dangerous place for me; I always find something I hadn't planned on that is simply irresistible. Case in point: last week, Leia and I went to buy zippers. Just zippers. But somehow a tie dye kit jumped into the cart, along with two child-size t-shirts. 
So today, while Leanne was napping, Leia and I headed outdoors and back to the 70's. The tie dye instructions said to wash the shirts before dyeing, but I figured drowning them with the garden hose served the same purpose (and was lots more fun for Leia.)
Then squirt bottles to the ready, we got down to serious business. My favorite moment was when Leia accidentally mixed two colors on the shirt and yelled, "Hey! Where did that green come from?!!!" 
The kit came with plastic gloves but they didn't do us a lot of good. 
We had color everywhere - hands, bricks, grass, shoes - 
but clean up was fun and most of the dye will wear off, eventually, right? (crosses fingers . . . )
The shirts have to sit for a day before we can rinse the dye out and see our results.
Stay tuned for Tie Dye, Part II.


His and Hers

This weekend, hubby left me for Ted, (just for the weekend; he's attending the Ted Conference in Denver with Rachel), so I had to find something to do to entertain myself.
I bought the brown and blue fabrics a year or two ago with the intent of making throw pillows for our teevee couch. But one thing procrastinated into another and . . . yeah, they never got made.

Two things conspired to change that. One is the orange flowered fabric, which I love, love, LOVE (it's left over from the backing on Mary's quilt); the second is the Sew Crazy Monthly Challenge. I want to improve my sewing skills and one of the things that still scares bugs me is zippers. Sooooooo, I challenged myself to put zippers in six pillows.
And because I know hubby will drive me crazy worry about the metal zipper tabs damaging the leather couch, I made fabric flaps to hide the zippers (using this tutorial). 
So hubby now has his pillows (in two different sizes, so he can adjust them for his comfort)
and I have my pillows, all orange and flowery and pretty. 
Hubby got more, but I love my pillows best.


Bye Bye Kindergarten

Look who graduated from kindergarten today.
The school didn't have a "grad" ceremony, but they did have an ice cream party, which I'm betting the kids preferred anyway.
Then it was off to the mall for lunch (Stacked. Yummmmmm) 
and a little something to help Leia celebrate her big day.
I'm guessing no one is surprised she chose another My Little Pony stuffie. Naia decided she was too old for Build-A-Bear, so she picked out a t-shirt at a nearby teen store. A My Little Pony t-shirt. She might be too old for Build-A-Bear, but never for My Little Pony.   


Patriotic Hat

I made another Bellisfaire Beanie for Addy, trying out a thicker yarn* that's closer to what the pattern specified. 
This is the same pattern I used with my silly models (here).  Turns out, I got the yarn size correct the first time - this one is stiffer than the others and a couple of inches shorter, since I had less yarn with which to work.
Leanne was kind enough (read: bribe-able) to model for me, even though she wasn't feeling good. 
In addition to making it shorter, I added a row of white surface crochet and two buttons to complete the patriotic look.
This is more of a 'cap' than a 'beanie' but the little girls don't care one way or the other; both styles are cute, especially on them. (Yep, I'm biased.)

*I used Tahki Classic Cotton Lite (sport weight) for the first two hats and regular Cotton Classic (DK weight) for this one. 


Baby Quilt

Hubby's buddy just had his first grandchild - Evelyn Rose - so a quilty gift was in order. I started this Friday and delivered it today.

The pattern is from 3 Dudes Quilting, via Missouri Star Quilt Co's video tutorial, using a rainbow jelly roll I bought last year and mermaid fabric left over from "my" quilt.
I was afraid the colors were too much, but hubby and I both liked the combo, so I crossed my fingers and finished it. Love how it turned out. And hubby's buddy (says he) loves it.
A poet I'm not, but I like the note I came up with (with the help of a rhyming dictionary. How sad is that??)
For T--- and S---, a grandparent quilt.
I'm not for the shelf, for use I was built.
Just wash me on cold and dry me on low,
and I will stay nice as your little one grows.


The Week In Pictures

Remember "my" quilt?

I think I'm losing the battle. Leia stayed here Monday since she was sick ("I have the flute Grandma. I threw up 3 times.") and spent most of the day wrapped in the quilt, Ipad in hand.
It may look questionable, but progress is being made on the kitchen. New windows are on order and a new sink has been selected. Next up - picking granite!

Tuesday night was Naia's school awards ceremony

where she was honored as"Most Improved" on the varsity girls basketball team. (And she has a 3.75 GPA. So proud of her!!)
Leia entertained herself through the long ceremony with a pair of painters goves she'd filched from Pop's stash.
Future proctologist?

I started a new project - want to guess what it's going to be? - 

 after I cleaned out the rather disgusting bobbin assembly. Kinda proud that I've done enough sewing lately to get it this dirty . . .

And finally, matching toesies -

Leia's picture of Leanne

and Leanne's picture of Leia.

 Gotta remember to put my good camera out of their reach next time . . . Happy weekend, everyone!