Busy, Busy World

Tonight is our Des Moines (Iowa) Modern Quilt Guild holiday social–can’t wait!  If you are in the area, stop by at 6:30 for an evening of fun.  We are swapping a holiday item–I whipped mine up last night (nothing like waiting till the last minute!).  More get-together details here

Every year, I make my nephews birthday shirts to boast their age at their birthday party.  These were last year’s (a Diego themed party) and the year before was a Curious George party (wow! They were such babies two years ago!)  This year, the older brother is obsessed with Richard Scarry’s Busytown (remember the Pig Will and Pig Won’t costumes?  Same source, and his idea..), and his little brother, fire trucks.  Originally the party was to be Busytown themed, but their Momma settled on a generic fire truck theme party.  

It just so happened that Quilting Treasures released their new line, Busytown on the Move by Richard Scarry at the beginning of October 2011, just in the knick-of-time for my nephew’s birthdays!

Seriously cute fabric, a BUSY scene with all sorts of activity going on in town, cars everywhere, including the famous pickle car, the mice driving saxophone and Swiss cheese cars, a worm driving an apple car, a rabbit driving a head of lettuce, a hog on a Harley(!), and a fox on a Vespa–


There is a televesion show out now, called Busytown Mysteries, which is how my nephews know about Richard Scarry.  He created Busytown before I was born, and what I love about this new series and the books, they haven’t “modernized” his art or the animation, the characters still look like, and are colored the same way, as I remember them in the 1970s.  Isn’t that cool?  Given the treatment of some other contemporary remakes from my childhood (don’t even get me started on Fisher Price Little People), I find this refreshing-and a nod to Mr. Scarry’s talent and genius.  Illustrations from the book, “What Do People Do All Day” (copyright 1968-still in print today!), check out Stitches the Tailor’s work table:

and Stitches is so wealthy he can hire a new house to be built (check out that bag of money!!!) don’t we all wish sewing was such a profitable profession:

Even the dressmaker works above the bank, presumably so she can deposit her ample earnings at the end of each workday…

Well, okay. Maybe not, but a girl can dream, right?!?

So for the birthday party, I bought them each a Richard Scarry book, and I made them each a shirt (recycled from their Halloween costumes!) with a Busytown fire truck fussy cut into their “number”:

And used the fabric to make them each their own pillowcase, perfect for falling to sleep on and dreaming big 3 and 4 year old dreams on…  Maybe I should make myself a birthday shirt next July to boast my new age, what do you think?  Yeah, maybe not.

Instead of using wrapping paper, I wrapped each book up in the pillowcase with their shirt as a “nametag” for whose gift was whose.

I’d like to imagine that they will be this easy to please when they are 13 and 14… 

Doubtful.  But again, a girl can dream, can’t she?


Blogtoberfest Day IX–Have your Cake.. and Quilt, Too

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MOMMA!!!!! For the woman who taught me to sew and instilled in me a love of fabric and fabric shopping… a “virtual” Quilt-y Cake!

Posted by jenmat on Cake Central.

Wouldn’t you just love it if someone made you a cake like this?!? Btw, the scissors, threads, etc. are all made of fondant–even though they look real.

Be sure to some back tomorrow, when my Halloween Party starts! Three weeks of Halloween inspiration and fun–Tutorials, Patterns, Costume Ideas, New Projetcs, Giveaways and more!

Aurifil Giveaway found here!

Blogtoberfest Day VIII–You Say It’s Your Birthday

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, Baby Sister!!!!!

The lovely quilt is a kit avilable from Homespun Hearth (a Buggy Barn Pattern) My sis loved the picture of this quilt, I may have to make one for next year!

Blogtoberfest-Weekend I


1st    My favorite 7-year-old
2nd  My Brother-in-law
8th   My little sis
9th   My momma
12th  My God-daughter
13th  My sweetie & my God-daughter’s Momma
14th  My sister-in-law
16th  My friend, Dawn
23rd  Baby Boy (even if he isn’t a baby anymore…)
31st  My friend, Kelli

It’s July 17th!

Love this card from my friend, Kimmie, complete with Jane Austen quote across the top.
available from here.
Happy birthday to ME, and to Phyllis Diller, Camilla Parker Bowles, Donald Sutherland, David Hasselhoff, the girl that stole my purse in high school, Lucie Arnaz, and anyone else who has a birthday today!
(yep, I share my birthday with the Hoff.  are you jealous?)

Hello, Kitty!

A sweet little friend of mine turned four last weekend.  She asked months ago for a Hello Kitty birthday party (there she is with Kitty on the cake). Her Mom is my friend Tonya, the friend that helped me create my own 3-tier wedding cake.  You might recall the Princess Cake we created for her birthday in 2010… 

For her gift this year, I made her a Hello Kitty Princess outfit.  Started with a plain white tee from Target…some scraps of Lakehouse Fabric, white flannel, a little Heat N’ Bond Lite…

Lots of satin-stitching with the walking foot…


Lots of “stops” and “starts” with the Janome Horizon…

Lots of pushing the tee shirt fabric out of the way of the needle….

And a lavender tutu skirt added to the bottom…and we have a birthday outfit fit for a princess!

The tagless tees always show the printing through the shirt a tad, so I added one of “Kitty”‘s bows to the back of the neck to cover it up…

The finished shirt along with the cute party invite her Mom created:

I was glad I thought to use white flannel for Kitty’s head, because not only did it add great texture to the shirt, but I didn’t have to worry about the lavender stripes showing through white cotton!

We’ve had some unseasonably warm weather already this month–nearly 100 degrees last week.  That is far too hot for the actual kitties around our house; they didn’t have the energy to care that the other was laying a mere three feet away, or to even bother chasing each other around the house. 

I don’t like the heat, but it did make it rather peaceful on the homefront.  This week, the temps are down and they are back to their usual antics.