Monday Mile Marker #3

CRAFTY, CREATIVE & FIT: The fitness goals I’ve set for myself are starting to take hold, healthier eating, smaller portions, more activity… I’m looking forward to exercising again, and even though I don’t think there have been any pounds lost, I am focusing on the fact that I feel better. This weeks miles: 9.75 (exercise only, I’m not counting everyday walking and calorie burning).

At my retreat last month, I made a project that I mentioned I didn’t want to show until it had been gifted…well it has…so here it is:

After making my brother an apron in July for his birthday, we decided his 3-year old son needed one for when they cook together. No, the 3-year old doesn’t read my blog, but his mom does, and I did not want her to see it here first! I found this cool construction truck themed fabric and made it reversible with this yellow flecked fabric:

Here’s the little sweetie modeling it…

Hamming it up for the camera…

and reading to his cousin….

The icing on the cupcake

Lorraine has received her cupcake goodies, so now I can post shots of what I made for/sent to her. First of all, I found some very cute cupcake paper liners, a bath cupcake for a relaxing fizzy bath , in “pink champagne” scent or flavor, a cupcake cookbook, every good cook should have one, and a cupcake card that I added an applique to, to match the apron I made.

And of course, the apron:


made from a Butterick See & Sew pattern, #B5125, it was easy to make except for the fact that I had to hem it by hand (not a big hand-sewing fan, unless it’s applique or embroidery), but that made it look nicer, and Lorraine likes it alot, so it’s worth every stitch!

The applique is my own design addition, complete with a cherry on top!
Maggy tried this out, too. What is it with animals and some new textile laying around?!?
Lorraine’s final surprise was the Batik Star that I first blogged about on July 11th, as part of my UFQ series. She was the only one to comment and suggested I “join a small quilt swap..or send it to me [her]…lol”. So, I finished it, and I did. Send it to her. See what a nice compliment can get you around here?

I had a lot of fun with this swap, getting to “know” Lorraine, and seeing some of the clever gifts people came up with across blogland for their partners.

Cupcake Cuteness


Guess what came today?!? That’s right, all the way from Down Under in just six short days! That shot above is a sneak peak of my finished project that is probably somewhere in the air today heading to the wonderfully talented Lorraine in Australia. Naturally, I mailed it on THE mailing deadline, not a few days early like my much more responsible swap partner.

Anyhoo…this is what greeted me when I arrived home from work today:

HAPPINESS IS…a package from a friend… :-> Look how much she packed in that little box!!! (I took a lot of photos because she forgot to photograph things before she sent them!)

Maggy had to come inspect the chocolate. Some of it has already mysteriously disappeared. She and I were the only ones in the house yesterday. No one’s talking…

There are cupcake cookie cutters, a cupcake teaspoon, a pink measuring tape in the cutest little tin (how did she know I’ve been using an iron-melted tape measure for over a year and needed a new one?!?) An adorable cupcake greeting card…

a cupcake magnetic shopping list for my fridge (I love these things!), a lovely ceramic cupcake box, did I already mention chocolate?

This super cute scrap bag made from cupcake fabric that I am taking to my retreat this weekend and will no doubt be the envy of all…

A cupcake apron, it’s a bad photo taken in the mirror, I’m still working on teaching Maggy to snap photos, not a lot of success with that yet… (I just remembered I have a self-timer on my new camera…gotta figure out how to use that feature.)

This AWESOME bright colored cupcake towel that matches my kitchen stuff pretty good, but I might just redecorate the kitchen around it! The colors are vibrant and oh so much fun!

Cupcake magnets…

and my favorite thing of all because I am so getting into embroidery these days and I SO love pinks and greens…

Isn’t that the sweetest thing ever? And, as if that all was not enough…an original art quilt made by the fabulous Lorraine…

cupcake cuteness…

with very clever free-motion quilting (which she claims not to be very good at?!?)…

and a very creative label which reminded me I forgot to attach the labels I made for the items I sent to her (shoot!), so Lorraine, I may just send those to you under separate post in a few days and you can attach them if you like…

It’s been a great pleasure getting to know my swap partner. She’s a sweetheart, and obviously creative and talented! I hope we will stay in touch…THANK YOU so much for making my week!

"huhhh—chili peppas…", and UFQ #8 & #9

I wrote last week about my brother’s birthday, which is exactly one week before mine. I’m trying to do more handmade “gifts from the heart” this year for special occasions and the holidays. Little Brother enjoys cooking, and he’s a talented cook–I can attest to that–he’s a good experimenter, and he enjoys grilling and growing veggies along with my S-I-L. The last few years, they’ve planted different varieties of peppers, canned some awesome sauces and made salsas, and whipped up some great meals. So when I saw this Alexander Henry pepper fabric, I could not resist. It practically screamed his name.
Then I found the great “sliced green pepper” Patrick Lose fabric to go with it, so I made it reversible:


Here’s my special “handmade” label…


And Little Brother proudly modeling it for me. His wife was saying at this moment, “smile, you’ll probably end up on a blog”…(she’s a regular reader–and got me into blogging in the first place) ;-> “hi, les!”


I’ve promised to make one for his little three-year old son, so Daddy and Son can wear them to “whip up some eggs”.

Now, back to the UFQ’s. These are actually USP’s (unstarted projects), the first, USP #8, is a sort of “commissioned project”, a bag for Little Brother’s S-I-L. I’m making a combo Miranda/Bridget bag from these two patterns and these fabrics…


It’s for a gal that usually goes for all black, so this will be a color infusion for her. Then, I have fabric for USP #9 to make myself a Miranda Bag…

The main part of the bag will be that awesome squares fabric, the lining will probably be the stripe and the bottom of the bag the tone-on-tone teal. I LOVE these, and can’t wait to work on this project!

Hopefully, I’ll get a chance to work on USP #8 this weekend…she’s waiting patiently…

Does the weekend have to end?!?

On Friday, I took a personal day from work, and went to the Ankeny Guild Quilt Show with three “quilty” friends. We saw some lovely applique:

Beautiful redwork: (Plus, I LOVE snowmen, and this quilt was covered in snowmen and snowflakes)

A cute hanky idea, patterned off a vintage quilt:

and SO much more! It was a great way to spend the morning. After the show, we went to sew and quilt at my friend Nan’s house. This is her project wall, with her almost completed Baltimore album quilt top:


It still needs the bows in the corners. She always swore she would never “waste her time with hand applique”–and now? She does almost nothing except hand applique. And she is VERY GOOD at it! This quilt is all batiks against a solid black ground.


I made my brother’s birthday gift, here is a peek at it:

And worked on my project for the Cupcake Swap. My swap partner, Lorraine, is hard at work in Australia on her project. Can’t wait to get it! I had a wonderful Saturday and Sunday as well, and it is just hard to see the weekend come to an end. Oh well, this weekend is my three-day retreat at Yellow Bird Art! I CAN’T WAIT!!!

What I made this weekend…

I worked at the Quilt Junction this weekend, and while there I agreed to make two store samples for the owner. I finished the first one on Sunday, this cute “Four Corner’s Apron” by Vanilla House Designs, made out of my favorite Kaffe Fassett fabric, ever…
It’s not a great photo, but there is a pocket with a flap on the bottom right of the apron, and a flap at the top neck, which I embellished with these great flower buttons. It’s cute, and super simple to make. Probably took less than an hour to complete.
I haven’t started the second sample, it’s a Wallet Purse, from a pattern by Favorite Things. This is the pattern, fabric and buttons I plan to use.
I’ve also been busy washing, sorting, pressing, bundling and organizing a HUGE collection of fabric, dressmaker patterns, and vintage linens that I got from an estate sale last week…but that’s a story for another post…