Tuesday, August 30, 2011

new favorite and fall sewing

I bought myself an iPad this week. It is kind of funny. I am about as low-tech as can be: no cable TV, still use a tracfone, etc, but I do love my Apple products. I saved up my hard earned sewing money from custom quilt orders and future book projects (eee, it's true!), and treated myself to a fun new gadget. One of my favorite new apps is Instagram. It is a quick and easy way to take pictures, if you are not familiar with it. I am slightly obsessed with it, in case you can't tell.

Playing with instagram, my favorite new way to take pictures.2hr afternoon nap. :)
playing with Instagram - an afternoon nap

Picking veggies from the garden to can salsa.Picking veggies from the garden to can salsa.

Pretty girl. 13 months old.the road to my house
baby girl at 13 months - the road to our house

Eli in the morningRelaxing with a heating pad on my neck. I think I need to make it a cute cover.
Eli in the morning - ugly heating pad

We had a good first week of school here. Weston is enjoying it, and I'm enjoying a quieter house and a schedule. I've gotten to spend more one-on-one time with the younger two. Though it is warm in the day, the autumn chill is creeping in during the night. It is getting me excited for some handsewing on the couch. Less time at the machine, more spent under quilts and afghans. I think the first thing I need to make is a sleeve for my iPad, maybe some English paper piecing? I haven't made any hexagons or diamonds in awhile. I'd like to make a heating pad cover too, that plaid has got to go.  I also need to start a list of Christmas gifts that need to be made.  Time to get planning! 

How about you? Does your sewing and crafting change when fall comes rolling in?

xo Ang

Thursday, August 25, 2011

week 13 - FWQAL

I had a couple fun blocks for week 13 in the FWQAL.  They were very different from each other, and a lot of fun to make.

The first block is #91 - Strawberry Basket.  I used Sherbet Pips square dots in red, Tula Pink's yellow ladybugs, Cosmo Cricket's green crosshatches.

The second block for the week is #92 - Streak of Lightning.  This is a floral from Anna Maria Horner's Innocent Crush line.  This was actually a scrap from my Kaleidoscope quilt binding!  I paired this with graph paper fabric, which I love.  It is hard to photograph, but you can see it up close here:

In more important news, Weston started school this week!  We are sending him to a private school in town, and he loves it so far.  His enthusiasm has made it easy for me to let him go.  He is having a blast. :)
1st day of Kindegarten!
Weston's 1st day of kindergarten

xo Angela

This post is part of the Farmer's Wife Quilt-a-long, please feel free to jump in at any time!  More information and previous posts can be found HERE.

Monday, August 22, 2011

a summer dress and a fabric destash

I made Finley a dress this weekend.  It is the first article of clothing I've ever made!

I used the Sweet Little Dress pattern by Leila & Ben, and it was the perfect pattern to start on.  It was simple, which is just right for a beginner garment sewer like me.  I like this dress because Finley can grow into it.  When she is bigger, it'll look cute with jeans and a long sleeve tee underneath it.  I used Farmdale aqua flowers, which I purchased with a 50% off coupon at Joann's awhile back. 

Finley looked adorable wearing this to church Sunday morning.  And I'm not going lie, I'm proud of myself for making it.   I am a pretty confident in my quilting skills, but clothes are definitely out of my comfort zone.

A couple sewing buddies gave me a great tip the other day: make your daughter's clothes while you can still pick out her clothes!  I think I'll take that advice and get sewing.  If you have any beginner-to-intermediate pattern or tutorial recommendations, please share! 

In other news, I am destashing quite a bit of fabric.  I simply have more than I can possibly sew, and I'm finally ready to send some of my goodies to new homes.  I have prepared two huge bundles that I am selling in my shop on Etsy.  They have almost all of my Flea Market Fancy stash, along with lots of other hard to find and out of print fabrics (Heather Ross, Tula Pink ladybugs, Summer in the City birds, Swell charm pack, etc).  I really don't have the time to sort and list the fabrics separately, so I think it'll be easiest for me to sell them in two large groups.  If you are interested, please check them out here.  Updated: both bundles have been sold, thank you!  I also have a couple leftover baby quilts that I just marked down for sale.

Happy Monday!
xo A

Saturday, August 20, 2011

241 tote review - Travel Handmade

Handmade with The Sewing Summit

This post is part of the
Travel Handmade series, for more great travel bag posts click here!


Hey all!  Guess what, I made some bags!  It is true, I did.  It was nice, venturing away from quilts a bit.  It has been awhile, so it was a welcome break.

Here are my 241 Totes, I made them this past week.  My talented friend Anna sent me her pattern months ago, right when she first released it, and I knew right away that I wanted to make a bunch of them.  As always, Anna's pattern is well written, thorough, and easy to follow.  This is a fun little tote that has two options for customizing: zipper pockets in the front or open side pockets.

The first bag I made is out of Anna Maria Horner's latest line, Loulouthi.  I used the zipper option for this one.  I love the two slash pockets in the outside of the bag, they are perfect for small items like keys and a cell phone.  The zippers were pretty easy to put in.  While I've sewn many zippers in the past, this was a new method for me.  I didn't even have to get my zipper foot out!  Bonus. :)

For my second tote, I used Joel Dewberry's Aviary 2.  I tried out the side pocket option for this one.  They are very easy to make, and if you are a little nervous about this zippers, this option is for you.  I liked adding a third fabric into the mix.

Both bags are fully lined with no exposed seams.  Inside there is a slip pocket and a magnetic closure.  I was happy I had a few of those laying around, they add a nice finishing touch.

I highly recommend the 241 tote pattern.  It is a versatile, customizable bag, and it is great for sewers of any level.  I will be taking one of these with me to the Sewing Summit for a project bag, and the other one will be a Christmas gift for a family member.  Now the hardest decision of all... which one should I keep for myself?? 

Happy sewing!
xo Angela

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

week 12 - FWQAL

I am so happy to be sewing Farmer's Wife blocks again this week.  I missed sewing them last week, and I had a lot of fun with these little blocks.  We are now on week 12, and I now have 24 blocks finished.

Starting from the top is #44 - Gentleman's Fancy.  I love these square-in-square kinda blocks.  I used a blue basket weave from Denyse Schmidt's Katie Jump Rope line along with a purple print from Anna Maria Horner's Bohemian. 

The second block is #69 - Practical Orchard, and this was a quick and easy block to make.  The green print is another AMH Bohemian, and the white is a seed text from Annie's Farm Stand.

The bottom block is #41 - Friendship Star.  I've always love this block, I'd really love to make a quilt out of it someday.  Maybe something in solids?  Anyways, I used red American Jane rulers and a pink and red dot from DS Quilts.

So far I'm still sticking with templates and rotary cutting when I can.  I am hoping to do some paper piecing at some point, I just haven't gotten to that yet.  I've formed a little schedule for my FW blocks that seems to work good to me.  I never have a long enough chunk of time to make two blocks in one sitting, so breaking them down into steps works the best.  I find that if I choose 2 blocks and pull fabrics one evening, trace and cut pieces another day, then sit down and sew them together yet another day, things go pretty smoothly.  Oh, life with kids.  :)

In other news, my oldest starts kindergarten one week from today.  We just picked up his school uniform this afternoon, and he is totally pumped.  Now we just need to pick out supplies (which was always my favorite part) and he is set. :)

xo, Angela

This post is part of the Farmer's Wife Quilt-a-long, please feel free to jump in at any time!  More information and previous posts can be found HERE.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Swoon quilt top

Talk about a rough week!  This past one was pretty tough.  I had some odd mix of seasonal allergies (which is a completely new development) and a terribly sore neck that kept me on the couch for days.  No sewing for me, not even a stitch.  I ventured out with the family Wednesday night to visit the local fair, but besides that, we were home.  Not a fun way to spend one of the last couple weeks of summer!

I'm feeling quite a bit better today, so I thought I'd take out my Swoon quilt top and snap a couple quick shots.  I can't wait to get back to this project.  It really is such a great pattern, I love how these corners and sashing meet up.  And did you see my friend Amanda's swoon quilt yet?  I think I might steal it.

 Time to get back to the sewing machine, I need to catch up on my Farmer's Wife blocks!

xo, Ang

Monday, August 8, 2011

life lately - a list

Life is so busy and full and happy.  Many things going on that I'd like to remember and share, so a list is what I have today.
1. We are spending as much time together as a family as we possibly can, and there has been lots of swimming, fires, and campouts in the backyard.  Weston will be starting kindergarten in 16 days.  He is so excited, and I'm so excited for him.  We have all day K here, 5 days a week, so it'll be quite an adjustment. 

2. My little man Elijah starts preschool in a month.  He'll be going 2 mornings a week, and he is totally pumped.  It'll be fun for him, and I'm looking forward to spending more time with this little girl...
... who is growing like a weed, by the way, and changing daily.  At 13 months (tomorrow), her preferred mode of transportation in walking now.  Or climbing.  Definitely keeping me on my toes.  I snapped this picture the other day during Steve's lunch break.  She is always a happy, sweaty mess when she wakes up after naptime. :)

3. I finished my Swoon quilt top over the weekend!  I love it so much.  I have to put it aside for now, I have another quilt to make, some designing to do, and Farmer's Wife blocks to work on.  I am looking forward to having this on my bed for the fall and winter.  Here are my last two blocks:
4. I came across this nice round up for mug rugs, if you're interested!  I was happy to see my selvedge mini included in the list.  I think I need to make some more of those to use as potholders.

5. In my neverending hunt for living room curtains, I stumbled across West Elm, and it is my new favorite store.  Currently in my shopping cart:  this, this, and this.  How have I never heard of this store before??

6. I pulled my trusty old coffee pot out of the pantry and made hot coffee for the first time in months.  I think I am finally getting over my iced coffee obsession.  Today it is all about the hot coffee and Almond Joy creamer.  Yum.

Happy Monday!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Apple Crate - a quilt tutorial

Good morning! I am excited because today I am sharing Apple Crate, my second quilt tutorial over at the Moda Bakeshop.  Remember this Flea Market Fancy quilt that I made back in the beginning of the year?  Yep, it is that pattern.  Since then I've had so many requests for a tutorial, and now I finally have one for you!

If you are here visiting for the first time, welcome!  I'm so happy you to have you.  You can read a little bit about me, see my latest quilt finish, and my two current WIP's.  If you are already one of my wonderful readers, please head over to the bakeshop and say hi!!  I really appreciate the comments that you leave for me over there.  You can find my post and tutorial here.

xo Angela

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

week 10 - FWQAL

Week 10 of the Farmer's Wife quilt-along is here, and I now have 21 blocks.  I am still doing templates for the most part.  I really like using them.  I know that is is not everyone's cup of tea, but it definitely is mine.  When I first began quilting 10 or so years ago, that is how I learned.  And perhaps the elementary school teacher side of me enjoys the all of the tracing and cutting. 

The orange block is #72 - Railroad.  This one was nice and easy, lots of squares and a couple HST's.  I used up some orange Modern Meadow scraps (Joel Dewberry) and Kei dots.  The second block is #40 - Friendship Block.  I used 1001 Peeps and Habitat for this one.  Aren't those two fabrics together the best?? 

Now here is the whole family, my first 21 blocks.  They sure make me happy.  I think I need to work on some yellow blocks next week.

I'll be back tomorrow, I have a quilt tutorial to share with you!
xo A

This post is part of the Farmer's Wife Quilt-a-long, please feel free to jump in at any time!  More information and previous posts can be found HERE.