Thursday, May 31, 2012


You'll flip when you see this!  AND......I've been doing this for maybe 20...or 25?  I remember years ago when I'd tell people what I was doing and they'd look at me like I was a nut case or something!  Not so much anymore!  Now they think I'm brilliant!  And wonder why they didn't think of it themselves.  (Just shows you that I was WAY ahead of my time!!)

See this:

Pretty, huh?  Well, I used to have LOTS more.  In fact I had big huge lawn and leaf bags full of them in all sorts of colors!  This is only what's a few new ones that I bought on sale this spring.  Now I store them in a plastic bin.  They do get sort of stinky after being in the ground......

See what I mean?  Now, look at this.........can you even tell that they're fake?  NOT!! NEVER have to water them either!  And you can plant them in early April in Wisconsin and people think that you have the greenest thumb in all the state!

Actually, in all truthfulness, I started doing this in just this area of our home since this spot is plagued with roots from all the big bushes behind it (which is owned by the neighbors behind me) and I could never plant a thing and have it live long.  Besides, I hated dragging the hose back there to water it.  Personally, I think it looks pretty good!

I did plant a few real flowers too.......just so you don't think I'm a complete slacker!  And I planted two tomato bushes which I didn't photograph (yet).  If I get a great crop, you can betcha you'll be seeing it though!!!

And, how do you like my pride and joy?  This is my $50 plant and dummy me can't remember the name of it.  Duh!  A horticulturist, I'm not!!  I just thought it was pretty!

$50 plant

I gave DH the watering job!  After all, what else has he got to do????

Saturday, May 26, 2012

The pincushion swap is over.....

And I had such fun!  I received my glorious package from Leah "Smoochee" all the way from Australia this week:

My FLiPS package from smoochee

That cross one is surely will hold ALL my pins and needles!!!  Leah must have known that I have lots!  And, surely being that large, I won't misplace it.  (Another plus!!)  Good thing it's not filled with crushed walnut shells (like I fill mine)......I might not be able to lift it.  lol  Really though, I do love it!  The piecing is amazing and the style is right up my alley!  She also was so generous in sending another pincushion, some darling pin toppers, a fat quarter and tons of sewing machine needles.  Wow!  I lucked out!

This is the package I sent my partner, Susan (FlossieBlossoms).  She let me use her photo with permission:

I'm sure you remember the frog and wrist corsage from my past posts.  There's a long story regarding this package.  I discovered that Flossie never went to prom as a girl and I thought a play on that theme might be fun.  I wrote a fairy tale that included close to 40 flickr names of people we both know and had her open certain things in order.  The fairy tale is here.   I think writing that was more fun for me than even gathering the stuff or making the pincushions.  You might enjoy it too.  I wonder if she ever did kiss that goofy frog???

Anyway, that's about the news with me.  I'm working on something and after that, I have another one almost finished in my head.  If they both work out like I envision, I'll be doing a happy dance.  What I'll do with all this stuff is the question though.  I only have so many!!!  Have a happy weekend, my friends............until next time.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Just playin'

It seems like forever ago that I just sewed for fun that I can hardly stand it!  I figured it was about time:


I bought a ton of Malka prints (a stitch n color) in February (I think it was February) and I made only one thing (that I gave away).  Remember this?

A "Stitch N Dye" look alike???

I loved that quilt, but it was a bit small for what I needed, so I thought it was time to get out the bunch again and some solids to go with them.  Here are the cools:

And here are some of the warms:

I just love making wonky log cabin blocks, don't you?  So far, I have 18 made and I think they will end up at 6 1/2 inches each.

Looks like my 18 warm blocks are done!

Next are the cools.....................wish me luck!

Friday, May 18, 2012


I don't usually promote lines of fabric.  Not to say that I don't have my favorites, but with the cost of goods today, and no sponsor, it gets a bit pricey.  More often than not, I have a plan or purpose when I go to my LQS.  Either I need a bit of this or that to start/finish a project, or maybe I'm just thinking about a color and want to see what they have.  Last time I was there, I was blessed with a charm pack of Moda's new release, "Summerville".  The owner of the shop, Julie, asked that I make something with it just for fun.    I was perplexed to say the least........what should I make?  I knew she'd want me to bring it in to show her Moda group so it had to be good.  Well, you already know that I used some of it for a few wrist pincushions:

3 "Summerville" Wrist Pincushions

Since I was in the pincushion mood, I thought she might use them as door prizes.  That might be fun!  But, the majority of the charm pack, some Moda solids to match, and 4 fat quarters for backing was used to make these:

"Summerville" Placemats

I fell in love with that pattern out of the new book, "Quilting Modern" by Jacquie Gering and Katie Pedersen, and just had to try it!!  (And NO, I did not get a free book just to promote it!!)  I had to buy it just like all of you, but I LOVE it!!  There are tons of things I want to try, and that rarely happens when I buy a quilting book.  (Usually I can come up with enough of my own crazy conceptions without using someone else's ideas!!  lol)  I must say though that the quilting of the projects in the book are simply amazing and stunning and really enhance the overall design of each project........but enough.  Let me show you each placemat:

Placemat #1

Placemat #2

Placemat #3

Placemat #4

Did you note the quilting?  It took me forever, I'll have you know, and 4 bobbins worth of thread, but really all worth it in the end, I think!  I love them.......although I wonder if I'll ever use them with the Kona Snow background?????   Maybe I'll just put them away and use them as a Christmas gift.   I could buy some more "Summerville" and make matching napkins?  Now, wouldn't that be really cool?  I think that's a plan!!!  

Monday, May 14, 2012

How to make a Pincushion Wrist Corsage

Do you remember this:

Fun and funky wrist pincushion

Well, that one I stuffed with polyfill, but I have found a better way and for sure, you won't poke yourself with this one!  Use a 1 1/2 inch styrofoam ball for the inside.  Cut off 1/3 of it though so it lays flat against your wrist.  I made a few for my local quilt shop and wrote the pattern which I will show you:

3 "Summerville" Wrist Pincushions

Cute, huh?  Needless to say, they are promoting the new Moda "Summerville" line!  I urge you all to shop your local quilt shops.  So many shops are going "under" now because of the on-line shopping and it's sad! Personally, I'd much rather feel and see the fabrics I want to buy in person, wouldn't you??  I probably could write a whole post on this subject, but today our focus is on pincushions so here we go. 

Pincushion Flower Wrist Corsage

 I wrote the pattern with sizes for the pieces (which will be given away at my LQS soon)............but you will have to click on the picture and then go to "actions" on the top left and then click on "view all sizes" to read it easier.  I wish I knew how to do a PDF file for you all, but alas, I am an OLD sewer and not a NEW computer whiz like so many of the young people of today!!  I'm sorry!  IF you can, follow the next few pics which should explain the process:

First, cut 1/3 off your 1 1/2 inch (38mm) styrofoam ball.  Put that inside a cut piece of batting, and put that over the cut (wrongside) outside fabric (which will be the pincushion part of the corsage).  Keep the flat side of the ball up.  See below:

Sew around the edges gathering it together to cover the ball.  Sew back and forth for strength.  (I used #12 embroidery floss for sewing as it was stronger.)

Cut out all your petals, (12 to make 6 turned inside out petals), leafy things (6 to make 3 turned inside out leafy things) and the straighter pieces (again 6 to make 3) and sew and turn inside out so that they all look like this:

Gather your petals as shown:

Sew them to the sides of the finished ball (now with the flat side of the ball towards the sewing).

At this point, it should look like this.  It's a different inside ball, but you get the idea, I'm sure.

Now, take the 3 leafy things, and equally space them to fit in between the spaces of your petals and sew them to the petals.  Next, do the same with your straighter pieces:

So far, so good!  Idiot me forgot to take any more pics, so here we wing it.....  Take a piece of fabric 9 1/2 inches by 4 inches wide and fold in both short ends 1/2 inch and press.  Next, fold the long ends in towards the center so that they meet.  Press well!  Fold in half again lengthwise and sew around entire piece.  This is your wrist piece!  Attach 1 1/2" to 2" of velcro to each appropriate side and sew your finished flower in the middle.  Wa-la!  Now you SHOULD have a beautiful wrist pincushion!  Here is how my original looked from the side:

Side view of wrist pincushion

Good luck and have fun!  I was thinking after I was done that not are they darling wrist corsage pincushions, but they also could be used for napkin holders too for perhaps a garden luncheon.  Now, wouldn't that be fun???

Friday, May 11, 2012

Sure looks like spring.......

It sure looks like spring at my daughter's house...notice all the dandelions!  Too bad her dog, Miya can't stand stand them, so trims off all the heads!  Anyone for dandelion wine???

My daughter's airedale pretending to be a lawn service!

Maybe I should hire her!  Right now I pay a lawn service to take care of my weeds!  lol

On another note, I got my swap quilt from the sew-vote-swap group and I couldn't be happier.  Osa Penny made it and I must say, it is a beaut!  Her piecing is just fantastic and I adore how she quilted each tree!  ('Course it doesn't hurt that there's a lot of white either!!  I love most things with tons of white.  lol)

My quilt from Sew-Vote-Swap

If you remember, this is the one I sent........(but it's still a secret where it's going since the person who won mine still hasn't received it yet.)

My entry for:  "sew-vote-swap"

I made another pincushion......(actually, it's close to being as big as a pillow.....don't tell anyone)......but it worked with the pleating this time.   The last one had the pleats too far apart!

"Almost big enough to be a pillow pleated pincushion"

And here is the back:

Back of "ABETBAP" pincushion

I'm working on a project for my LQS so I've been busy.  This crazy project is taking me lots longer than I expected, but like my hubby says, "What else have you got to do??!!!"  (Don't you just love it when they say dumb stuff like that???) about, cooking, cleaning, grocery shopping, voting for "Dancing with the Stars" and laundry!!  (Not necessarily in that order either!!  lol)  I have to watch my Green Bay Packer star, Donald Driver, you know!!!

At least I get a break Sunday and I hope you all do too!  We're ordering pizza for Mother's Day!  And then watching the finale of Survivor!  It's sort of a ritual after all these years!  Oh well......

You have a blessed and wonderful Mother's Day too!  Hopefully, you won't have to cook too much!  Later..........

Tuesday, May 8, 2012


Anyone going somewhere special?  Need a wrist corsage in a minute for something?  I have just the thing! Look what I made (and please ignore the "phylo dough" looking old hands and arm.  That's what happens when you age, unfortunately).

Fun and funky wrist pincushion

And, here is a side view:

Side view of wrist pincushion

I had so much fun making that!  First I picked out my fabrics for the petals so I could do colonial knots in the same colors in the white spots of my checkered middle ball.  I stuffed it with 100% cotton stuffing, but now I wish I had used a cut off styrofoam ball 'cause the pins wouldn't be as likely to fall out.  (No fear of stabbing yourself that way either.)  I will be making another one within a week or so, and I will take pics along the way so I can show you the process!

Then, I decided that my FLiPS partner needed something special, so I made Frank!

Meet "Frank" the FLIPS frog

If you click on the picture, it'll take you to my Flickr page where I listed the link to the pattern.  He was made as a bean bag by the original designer, if you can believe?  Too cute to throw around, I think!!!  I stuffed him with crushed walnut shells that I got at Petco in their bird department.  It gives it nice weight while still being somewhat floppy.  (Not only that, but it's good for your needles!)

Then last, but not least, I made this pretty little pink pleated pincushion.  (Say that 4 times fast in a row.  lol)

Pretty little pink piped pleated pincushion (with hand stitching)

I actually had something else in mind when I made all those pleats and they should have been closer together, but I decided to make something out of my mistake anyway.  Besides, who doesn't love pinks, and oranges together?

So, that's it for today!  For some reason, I don't work as fast as I used to.  (Probably because DH is home now and gets in my way or needs something all the time!!!)  What is it with these guys?  Something can be right in front of their faces, and they can't find it?  I don't get it!!!

Have fun week, my friends and sew well!  I'll be back soon to show you a few more things.  Until then....................

Friday, May 4, 2012

What's new?

Finally, things are arriving at their destinations so I can show you some stuff!   

For the QT swap our theme for April/May was "ticker tape quilts".  Now, I really do know the ins and outs of a normal ticker tape quilt, but if you know me, you MUST realize that I HAD to do something a bit "out of the box".  What can I say?  Me, normal?  Nah!  I had a plan in mind right from the beginning.  I did not do it in the normal manner of just sewing pieces onto the sandwiched fabrics, but fused pieces to a front piece just as I would for a normal applique quilt.  (Call me a cheater!!) 

Do you see where this is going?  I wanted to do a flower scene.  Cutting all those teeny bits and pieces to fit was no picnic, believe me!  Thankfully, after I was all done, it looked just as I had imagined.

Ticker Tape Flowers

I did get a normal ticker tape quilt in return though.  Karin, from Sweden sent me this beauty:

Ticker Tape (QT swap) from Karin

She really did her homework and discovered my love of red and white together.  Aren't those free motion dog bones just the sweetest?  She must know about my, Toby too, huh?  I bet!

Then, we finally voted in the Little Quilt, Sew-Vote-Swap group.  This was round 4 and I think there were more entries than ever before.  I made mine a long time ago.  Someone mentioned that she thought it looked like a bunch of boobs and ever since then, that's all I see when I look at it.  lol  I'm really glad I'll be sending it off to "who knows who" soon so I won't see them anymore.  See what you think:

My entry for:  "sew-vote-swap"

I have been making a few more's one I came up with outside of my norm:

Asian Inspired Pincushion

It looks a bit Asian to me.  Perhaps I was inspired by those Asian bitty blocks I made awhile ago, who knows?  I'm happy to report that it has a new home already!  My friend, Shirley, fell in love with it so it's  now with her!  I sure hope she's using it and not putting it in a drawer somewhere.  lol

So, that's the news.  I have a project to do for my LQS so I'll be working on that.  It's going to be a surprise for the Moda club at the end of May.  Then too, I want to do another pincushion for my swap partner.  It's a long story and after I send it all out I will tell you the theme and my thoughts on what I did.  I hope it's as much of a hit as I hope!  I will show you both of the pincushions for her next time.  Until then, have a great weekend and have fun!!!

Tuesday, May 1, 2012


Did you see?  You must have!!  My friend, Annie, fixed my blog!  She is a GENIUS!!!  She got all my stuff back.....actually, I think I got more than I had before, but that's okay!  At least I don't feel so lost anymore (and that's a good thing!)  Now, I can see what my cyber friends are doing, and that inspires me!  I think I forgot one.......(where I used to get some recipes)......but that can be fixed pronto with just a phone call to my "Computer Blog Genius".  Thank you SOOOOOO much, Annie!  I love ya!!!!

Soon, five of you should be receiving your pincushions.  Unfortunately, or maybe I should say fortunately, one lady never responded to my 2 e-mails to her, so I will be picking someone else from today's posts for the last one.  Don't ask me which one it is.  I boxed them all up before I wrote on any addresses so they would be completely random.  Hopefully, it's a good one!  lol

I think I mentioned that I was working on Bitty Blocks.  May's themes are Asian, and houses.  I originally signed up for 24 houses, but yesterday, they were begging for more Asian people, so I decided to do 12 for that theme too.  I don't know what draws me to those tiny 3.5 inch blocks, but I love doing them.  Perhaps  it's immediate gratification?  They really don't take that long!!

Grp #2 BBC-House theme for May

BBC/House theme for May -Grp #2

Grp #1 BBC - Outhouse

Grp #1 - Outhouses BBC

BBC - Asian - "Peace be with you!"

BBC - Asian "peace" symbol

In case you didn't know......that is an Asia peace symbol!  (I picked the easiest symbol to do, but don't tell anybody!) Actually, I thought it was brilliant for a last minute idea!!  I'm really not that into Asian things except for Chinese buffets.............WHICH I ADORE!!!!

So, that's the scoop for today, my friends!  I have some other stuff cooking, so I'll show you that next time.  I really need to start working on my swap pincushion.  It's in my head, but I'm hoping it works in real!  Wish me luck!  (Oh......and again, thanks for your prayers and suggestions on recovering my sidebar.......I think those really helped Annie get to the root of the problem.)  Yeah!!!