Monday, April 30, 2007

Woo hoo, my Gracie Handbag is done!!



I just finished my Gracie Handbag!! It turned out soooo nice. I love it. It was also great to see that my Bag-E-Bottom came in the mail today. I've got to say, that placing an order through the Lazy Girl Designs web site is the way to go. They ship so quickly. I think I ordered this stuff last Thursday. So now my purse has a nice hard bottom and stands up really nice. I really like that these bags are made in a manner that you can pull the bottom out at any time and move it to a different purse. It's very versatile. I can't wait to make a matching wonder wallet, a zippered pouch for my digital camera and one for my mp3 player. I have quite a bit of fabric left over so I'll probably make a Chelsea tote too. Then I'll have lots of choices for all of my matching goodies. But before I do all of that, I really want to make my blue and yellow Chelsea tote so I can carry it to Friday's Brewer Game, I'll need something to hold my Jim Gantner Bobble Head! As soon as I'm done typing I'll have to "Move In" to my new purse and then go to bed! One of the ladies in my Saturday block of the month club pointed out that the Moda fabric line is very similar to the Java Blue line of Vera Bradley bags.

Yesterday I worked for about 8 hours on the borders for my purple and lime wall hanging. I started back up with them tonight but since we had a thunderstorm rolling in, Holly was hiding under my sewing table and it was getting frustrating trying to deal with her and the precision of the paper piecing. Oh well, another night!

I came to work this morning to find that my friend Diane had made me a pretty awesome ring out of poly clay. She never ceases to amaze me! I LOVE it!!! Thanks Again Diane!!

COMMENTS:
Tuesday, May 1, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by scissorhandscps (68.22.246.2)
Awesome job on your purse. I love it! The borders are gorgeous, is that part of the pattern or did you draw it up??? Nice ring too :0)


Tuesday, May 1, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by CountryQuilter (69.176.33.31)
Well, aren't you just a busy little bee. I love the handbag. I think that one is prettier than the Vera Bradley. How long did it take you from start to finish? Can wait to see the wallhanging finished. You people that paper piece amaze me, I guess someday I will have to try it for myself. Oh, your friend is very talented with the poly clay. I've never saw a ring made out of it before. How do you find the time to do all of this stuff and still work?


Tuesday, May 1, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by Vesuviusmama (137.113.52.128)
Everything on your blog is always so lovely, but also inspiring as well! I love how you tackle the non-traditional.






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Sunday, April 29, 2007

Pillow Case Pattern


You need:

  • ¾ yard for pillowcase body (27 inches) If you have an inch or two less, it's better to use the fabric for a pillow case than to not use it.
  • 1-2 inches for flange (I prefer to use a 2 inch flange. Folded in half it's 1 inch, and becomes ¾ inch once it's sewn)
  • 3/8 yard for cuff (11 inches)

  1. Cut your fabric per the above measurements.

  1. Fold the flange strip in half lengthwise and press wrong sides together

  1. Layer using the width of fabric (See figure 4):
    1. Cuff Fabric – Right side Up
    2. Flange strip – Raw edges together on one edge of the cuff
    3. Body fabric – Right side Down (If fabrics are directional, then check to see that they are facing the correct direction.) Roll the body fabric up so it fits within the cuff fabric.

  1. Fold over the cuff fabric to cover the roll of the body fabric and flange, bringing to the other raw edges (You should have 5 layers of fabric).

  1. Pin if desired.

  1. Stitch ¼" seam allowance along pinned edge.

  1. Turn right side out and trim off selvedge edges.

  1. With Right sides out pin (if you wish) along side and bottom of pillow case. Take a scant quarter inch seam allowance and stitch along the side, turn at the corner and stitch along the bottom. Clip the corner and any stray thread along the seam.

  1. Turn pillow case inside side out. (See figure 10) With the seam finger pressed, pin the seam again (pin if desired) and stitch with a 5/8" seam allowance.

Turn Right Side out, Iron and You're done!

****For an easy to read/easy to print copy of this pattern click HERE.


COMMENTS:

Sunday, April 29, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by Anonymous (69.176.33.55)
How great. You give better instructions than most quilt magazines...love the fabrics...


Sunday, April 29, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by CountryQuilter (69.176.33.55)
Jen, that last comment was from me, I forgot to log-in.
Kristie


Monday, April 30, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by 51050 (24.176.0.71)
Thanks for the pattern! I really need to make some, and I would have made a pattern up, but this sounds like fewer steps. Rhoda

New Web Mast Head


Wooo Hooo! I figured out how to create my own mast head by using a picture of one of my quilts, dulling it down a bit and typing over it. I LOVE it! Now I can't wait until my mom gets home from her Red Hatter event so we can design hers. =)

Here is a picture of the quilt that I made the mast head out of:

I'll make an attempt at explaining what I did...I kind of fumble around until I figure things out so I don't know the "technical terms." First I rotated the picture, then I played with the contrast and brightness until I thought it was "dull" enough. Then I had to check out how large the mast heads are on our quilt blogs and it's 750 x 100 pixels so I changed it to that size. I found a font that I liked, sized my text accordingly and put it as a layer ontop of my image and saved it as a .jpg file. I uploaded the picture. I then went into "Edit Template" and searched until I found the place within the HTML code that has the mast head. It's actually a link. Mine read something like http://myquiltblog/pinkstripmasthead.html or something of that nature so I replaced my link with that link. I expected this to be right near the top in the HTML code but it turns out it was about 2-3 inches down the page. I previewed it and it actually worked so I hit save before it could change it's mind.

If any of my fellow quilt bloggers want a personalized mast head and don't know how to do it, shoot me an email and I can make one up for you. Now that I know what I'm doing it will probably only take about 5 minutes. You'll need a picture, the text that you want written and flip through your font list to see what looks good to you.


COMMENTS:
Sunday, April 29, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by CountryQuilter (69.176.35.198)
Okay Genius, how did you do that? :) I never even thought of trying that. I like that, it makes it a little more personal. You will have to let all in on the secret...



Quilt Pink Auctions


Seriously, I've become a Quilt Pink Auction stalker. It's nearing obsession. My super sleuthy husband showed me how to search on the finished Quilt Pink Auctions so I could see the quilts that went for the highest dollar amounts. I'm amazed at what these beauties are going for.

COMMENTS:
Sunday, April 29, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by scissorhandscps
It is very exciting, isn't it? I can't wait til ours is on ther to see how it does:0)




Saturday, April 28, 2007

Saturday Fun



Today my Mom and I ran some errands. We started off with Lunch at Quizno's. Then, since we were so close to a quilt store, we HAD to go there.

Homespun Creations looks like they're back to having normal business hours, for spring they were down to a few days a week and very limited hours. They've also remodeled the store. Homespun Creations actually shares space with her sisters carpet store, and the store is in an industrial park. Previously the Carpet Store was in the front and Quilt store in the back and they've now flip flopped. The quilt store looks great in the front, now you'd never know there was carpeting in the back. Unless you know where the store is, you'd never find it. But, it's a great hidden treasure because they carry things that the rest of our local quilt stores don't. Of course, I *had* to make a few purchases because it's only the polite thing to do! I bought a few pieces of "fun" fabric to make into pillow cases for my husband and I bought some really pretty lilac fabrics. Not sure what I'll do with them yet, but they sure are pretty. They're almost "frosty" looking. The collection is called, "Time won't wait" by Kathleen Francour for Henry Glass & Co.

After a non-eventful trip to Kohl's, Mom and I then began our hunt for the Watermelon nail polish color that we had gotten when we had our manicures and pedicures last week. It turns out that it's from last years Flip Flop Fabulous collection. We went to Ulta and ended up with Essie's Wife Goes On as the closest match we could find. Of course, this led to nail painting and then a nice nap on the couch while they dried. Do you have any idea how hard it is to take a picture of one hand while holding the other in mid-air?

We then began our purses. Mom started a Lazy Girl "Towne Purse" and I started a Lazy Girl "Gracie Bag." I'll post pictures once they're finished. I threatened not to let my mom go to bed until her purse was finished but I gave in and left her house at about 1:30 a.m. In the mean time, we decided she needed a Quilt Blog too, so she's Sew And Snip.


COMMENTS:
Sunday, April 29, 2007 - <i>Untitled Comment</i>
Posted by (69.176.34.213)
Well, it sure sounds like you had a wonderful day. I love the new fabrics. I buy a few novelty fabrics for the boys pillowcases, mostly superheros for Hunter and Hunting themes for Andrew. I love the lilacs. They remind me of some fabric on a tote bag that I saw this morning on www.how-to-quilt.com. They have a free pattern there for it. They look so springy. Oh by-the-way, I love the nails...

Edited by CountryQuilter on Sunday, April 29, 2007 at 01:31 PM


Sunday, April 29, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by scissorhandscps (68.22.246.2)
It's nice that your mom is blogging , that's cool.






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Friday, April 27, 2007

Invitations


Something outside of the quilting arena that I enjoy doing is creating invitations. Here's a picture of the one that I just created for my Cousin Sean and his wife Henriette's "Post Nuptial Party." They live in Arizona and are coming home in a few weeks so as a family we haven't gotten to celebrate yet. The rubber stamping didn't come out exactly as I had hoped, it had been so long since I rubber stamped on vellum that I guess I forgot all my tricks! Anyway, it's supposed to be a shamrock, a heart and a tulip. He's Irish and she's originally from Holland. (Yes, I intentionally blurred out the address and phone number)

COMMENTS:

Saturday, April 28, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by scissorhandscps (68.22.246.2)
How very nice! I like to make stuff like that, I just don't have time!!


Saturday, April 28, 2007 - Man.......
Posted by ninepatchrose (71.195.93.163)
where was I when they were handing out creativity! I think you got my share plus some more. You do so many beautiful things!!!!!!And you must never have an idle moment.
You even do a great blog. Pictures, links, the whole works.
This invitation is beautiful! I'm sure they will be very happy with it!
I have a friend who does rubber stamping and they are like works of art. When I get a card from her I generally frame it or put it up on a shelf because they are so pretty.


Saturday, April 28, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by CountryQuilter (69.176.33.27)
That is so cute. I love handmade things, they seem to mean more...Great Job...





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Thursday, April 26, 2007

I love my Epson Printer!

For my birthday this year I received a new printer from my husband based off recommendations made in my Janome 6500 Yahoo Group. One member of our group went through the trouble of testing the ink, she wrote:

"I have found the Durabrite inks to be extremely durable; I have tested labels with multiple washings in regular laundry detergent and hanging them out on the clothesline in the sun (which is something I would never to do a quilt). I have only been able to make them fade a tiny bit after about 8 washings and hangings out."

I chose this printer because it is an all-in-one. Prior to this, I was against the idea of an all-in-one because what happens if one of the parts breaks? But, with the way technology changes these days they are not made to last forever so I have been converted to the all-in-one way of thinking. Mine is a Printer/Copier/Scanner. While I don't see my cx7800 model for sale on the Epson web page anymore, the technology with Durabrite inks is still very prevalent through their entire line. The cx6000 is very similar to the cx7800, the only real difference is the cx7800 can also scan slides and negatives which most likely isn't that important for the average person but when I'm not playing with my Fuji Fine Pix point and shoot digital I like to play with my good old Pentax 35mm in the manual mode!

Why do I love it so much?

The #1 reason is that I can iron fabric onto freezer paper and print directly on the fabric. Sure, you can do this on any printer but the Durabrite inks won't wash out like other inkjet printers do. As far as I know, Epson's Durabrite inks are the only inks that can do this - but with technology changing daily someone else may have come out with a similar ink. I can choose any fabric to print on without having to pre-treat or post-treat my fabric. I use the freezer paper sheets that come in a package, already cut to 8.5" x 11" size for the printer. They are a little thicker and don't tend to curl like the regular freezer paper does. I picked these up at my local quilt shop. You can use freezer paper off the roll too; this just saves me the step of cutting it down. My one pack will probably last me for years!

The #2 reason is that I can re-size quilt, purse and applique patterns with ease up to 400%. It can print this 400% image on 9 pieces of paper without having to move the pattern 9 different times. Either way the paper needs to be taped together but now I can do it without having to leave the house to run to a copy center.

I also like that the ink cartridges are all separate (Black, Magenta, Yellow and Cyan). I previously had Hewlett Packard Printers and their colored ink comes in one cartridge. If the blue ink ran out, the whole cartridge was shot. This way I can replace cartridges as I go, and it's easier to stretch each color until its bone dry. Replacement cartridges are about $13 each which is a little easier on the wallet than $35 at one time for color and another $35 for black.


COMMENTS:
Friday, April 27, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by scissorhandscps
How many ink cartridges does it take? I love my epson printer too! But mine is older. Takes two cartridges. I also have a Janome and am interested in that group. Very cool. Thanks.

Friday, April 27, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by CountryQuilter
Must be nice!! You must be one of these "high-tech" quilters :) I guess all of this makes the process alot easier. Lucky you, I'm jealous!!!! Anyway, as far as sewing machines go, I just have a Brother, that I've had for about 5 years, the reason I went with Brother was, first, the price, and my mom has had the same Brother sewing machine for the past 28 years, and it is still going strong... I may have to check into some of this stuff that you have been talking about...
Kristie Layne

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Keeping Fingers Crossed


Hopefully I'll find out today about my MRI. My doctor's off days are Tuesdays and Thursdays so if I don't find out today, by Friday I'll be on the other side of insane. I made my first call to complain about the Nut who attached a nut to my body. Unfortunately she wasn't able to do anything because she doesn't oversee the radiology staff, but she was able to give me the phone number of that department head. She did agree that it's absolutely unacceptable and she's appalled that the tech asked me if I was serious when I told her I was allergic. She said she too was bothered that I also wasn't asked about a latex allergy when they stuck the marker on me with tape. Granted, I don't have a latex allergy but they really should have asked. With all the times my Grandma has been in the hospital over the past few months, whenever I was around they ALWAYS asked her about latex. I'll be calling "William" tomorrow.

I've been working on my purple and lime wall hanging. I've got the rings all finished, next I'll need to attach the backing fabric to the circular piece and then the paper piecing of the borders will begin. When I scrunched down the file size, it really took a lot away from the color of the quilt. It's a very brilliantly colored piece!

My Wall hanging so far.

The picture from the pattern.

It's going together a lot quicker than I would have imagined. The only "problem" that I'm encountering so far is the fact that I've never pieced circles so I'm actually rolling one edge under and blind hemming the other on top of it. I'm almost thinking that to avoid any further stretching that I might just leave the backing in one piece instead of piecing it and blind hemming the circle to it to keep it more stable.

The pattern is by Peggy Martin. From the book:

.


COMMENTS:
Wednesday, April 25, 2007 - <i>Untitled Comment</i>
Posted by (90.196.228.130)
those colours together are gorgeous. I love lime and purple together.
I must admit that when I do a Mariner's Compass I always applique it onto the background and then cut away the excess fabric under the compass. There's a bit more waste doing it this way but i think it gives a nicer finish.
I love the pattern, where did you get it from, is it over the web because I wouldn't mind doing it.
love and hugs gina xx

Edited by orchidlover on Wednesday, April 25, 2007 at 12:54 AM


Wednesday, April 25, 2007 - WOW
Posted by ninepatchrose (71.195.93.163)
BEAUTIFUL!!!!!!!
Waiting with you on word of your MRI. ((((((((((((HUGS))))))))))))))))


Wednesday, April 25, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by CountryQuilter (69.176.35.181)
That is just beautiful!!! You know, as many quilts that I have made I have never done any paper piecing. I don't know why, but it intimidates me. Actually, I've never even tried it. I can't wait to see the finished product. Were are you going to hang it?


Wednesday, April 25, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by scissorhandscps (68.74.137.61)
That is sooooo sweet! Nice job! LOVE the colors.


The Results Are In!!


Comments from the Doctor's Office
see Epic telephone encounter 4/25/2007.
Impression
Findings most consistent with
hemangiomas involving T9 and T2 without evidence of osseous destruction. The thoracic cord appears unremarkable without evidence of spinal stenosis. Interpreted by: Zellmer, Christopher J.

*************************************

I also just got off the phone with my doctor's nurse. She said the x-ray was normal. The MRI shows small clusters of dilated blood vessels (hemangiomas, but mine is below the skin, not above like the Strawberry hemangiomas) but that they don't feel they are what is actually causing the problem. They consulted with the Orthopedic MD and he suggests Physical Therapy. If there is no significant change then they can do pin point injections of some sort.

THANK GOD!

COMMENTS:
Wednesday, April 25, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by CountryQuilter
Great news!!!!! You have been in my thoughts all morning, I found myself checking in to see if you had found out anything yet. Sometimes things like that can be so scary. I know you were worried. Glad to hear the good news. Now get that physical therapy done and get back to quilting :) Hope you get to feeling better...
Love Kristie


Wednesday, April 25, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by 51050
I'm so glad it was nothing serious!! Have you tried a chiropractor? Since the Fibromyalgia, I swear by them - a good one that is. I go about every month, and it really helps with the pain. My sister had injections and that has helped her a lot. Hopefully the therepy will do the trick. Rhoda


Wednesday, April 25, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by Vera
So glad it was nothing serious and hopefully the physically therapy will work for you.


Wednesday, April 25, 2007 - When will you start
Posted by mamanance
the physical therapy? I too have had good results with a chiropractor, as has my husband and even the daughter who is an intern at a farm in the Hudson Valley of NY. Be sure to keep us informed on your progress.


Wednesday, April 25, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by scissorhandscps
Yipee! Yipee! Yipee! So glad to hear the GREAT news! :0) Hopefully physical therapy will be all you need and then quilt on! :0)


Thursday, April 26, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by orchidlover
I'm so glad that it wasn't bad news. I'd been thinking of you all day yesterday.
Now that weight is off your mind you can concentrate on your sewing

love and hugs gina xxx


Thursday, April 26, 2007 - so good
Posted by ninepatchrose
To hear the great news! TThanks for letting us know so quickly. I'll still be thinking of you as you go on with your treatment and get to feeling better very soon!



Tuesday, April 24, 2007

This stuff is Amazing!!


I've got to share with you some things that my friend Diane has been working on. Diane and I took two jewelry making classes a few years ago only now she's taken things to a whole new level by making her own beads and pendants out of poly clay. Here's a few of my favorites:

This set is a box of chocolates and individual chocolates based off of Frango Mints.

The main pendant is maybe 1-1/2 inches high and 2 inches wide.

This light switch plate is just gorgeous, both online and in person.

The Balinese silver and malachite set look like stone and metal.

I cannot believe how her pieces are turning out; they're just amazing to me! I don't think I could work with pieces so small. Make sure you check out the rest of her gallery because it just blows me away. In addition to being extremely talented in Jewelry Making and PolyClay design, Diane is also an author of quite a few spicy romance novels under the pen name Diana Laurence. I was honored to take her picture that appears on her web site and inside many of her books. It's exciting to be a "published photographer."

While browsing other PolyClay sites I ran across an artist named Sarajane Helm who created an entire quilt shop out of poly clay. It's amazing; it's definitely worth a look. When you take into consideration the size and detail of these pieces you'll be blown away. There's even a book out called "Adapting Quilt Patterns to Polymer Clay" written by polymer clay artists Judith Skinner and Sarajane Helm.


COMMENTS:
Tuesday, April 24, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by Vesuviusmama (69.19.14.21)
You are right - that is amazing! The detail in the tiny quilt shop is stunning! Here I go sounding like a non-quilter, but "I don't think I could ever have the patience of skill to do that!"


Tuesday, April 24, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by 51050 (24.176.0.71)
WOW! Rhoda


Tuesday, April 24, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by CountryQuilter (69.176.34.241)
They are beautiful. There in no way I could do that. That takes alot of talent...I love them. I bought some poly clay a few years ago and it ended up the the garbage. :)


Tuesday, April 24, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by scissorhandscps (68.74.137.61)
Very pretty! My kids love the sculpy clay. Don't mess with it much as I don't need another quilting distraction. :0)




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Monday, April 23, 2007

Quilt Shop Hop



There has been so much going on that I didn't get a chance yet to write about our Saturday of Quilt Shop Hopping!

We started out at Bits & Pieces with our shopping. They were having a 20% off sale. I bought a 42 fat quarter set of Celebrate Spring by Sandy Gervais & Moda. I haven't decided on a pattern yet but I think I'll make them into a bed quilt and a wall hanging for our bedroom. I'm sure Mike will just be just thrilled to sleep beneath such girlie fabric! I also bought 4 cuts from the Sunshine by April Cornell & Moda collection. These will be made into the Chelsea Backpack by Lazy Girl Designs.

Celebrate Spring Sunshine

We then moved on to Fabric Fusion in Brown Deer. That was my first time there. They have lots of batiks and hand painted fabrics. They were gorgeous! I'll definitely be going back there again. They also have a lot of really nice classes on their schedule. Things much different than the other area stores. I bought some batiks and hand painted fabrics to put into a wall hanging.

Batiks & Painted Fabrics Wall hanging that I want to make

Our next stop was Dovely Quilts in Milwaukee, another store that I hadn't been to before. Sarah the owner is a very sweet woman. It's nice to see someone around my own age as a store owner. I purchased some additional yardage of the fabrics that I bought last weekend at the Mukwonago Quilt Show (The brown and teal pieces). These will be made into the Gracie Handbag by Lazy Girl Designs.

Our last stop was The Patched Works in Elm Grove. I purchased quite the array of fabrics there, nothing that goes together!! The purple pansy fabric I'm thinking of using in a Central Park quilt. I can't find a link to the pattern but the center of the quilt is just your focus fabric, you then add a 3-4 inch border and around the outside you place 2 rows of 4 inch squares in accent colors. I just love the pansy fabric and don't want to cut it up so this seems to be a great pattern to use it in. The second fabric I'm adding to my collection of browns and teals for the Gracie Handbag. The Breast Cancer print I didn't buy with a project in mind, I just want to have the fabric in my stash. The stripe is the binding fabric for a quilt that I made earlier this year that I haven't posted yet. It was a kit, and in all honesty I only bought it because I was drawn to the striped fabric, the rest of the quilt I'm not so sure of, it's really out of the box for me.

Our Quilt Shop Hop was definitely a success. My mom sure has a lot more control than I do. I was buying things that I fell in love with. Normally I don't buy so much fabric at once, but I think I was buying to get my mind off of my back pains. We had a TON of fun!!

COMMENTS:
Tuesday, April 24, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by Vesuviusmama (69.19.14.21)
What beautiful fabric! It sounds like you had quite a bit of fun, but I also imagine your wallet was much lighter at the end of the day! If you can buy that much in one day, I would love to see your stash!


Tuesday, April 24, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by 51050 (24.176.0.71)
All the fabrics are beautiful - I love the blues and yellows together, but I REALLY love the pansy fabric! I want to see that quilt when it's done! Rhoda


Tuesday, April 24, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by Cre8tiveQuilter (69.216.24.194)
Actually, I really don't have a stash! Anything that's big enough and left over gets used up for Project Linus or gets made into a Pillow Case for soldiers. Last August when I started making pillow cases I went through my fabric and sewed it all up. Since then I've just bought what I need for a project.


Tuesday, April 24, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by CountryQuilter (69.176.34.241)
Sounds like you had so much fun. I wouldn't know what to do with so many shops. We don't have any close. I love the fabrics. I want them :)


Tuesday, April 24, 2007 - Untitled Comment
Posted by scissorhandscps (68.74.137.61)
Wow! Nice haul. Love all those colors. Our shop hop is in August. Can't wait! :0)