Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Random: looking around

 Some of the days, I like to pull out these fabulous magazines and baking books. I used to bake a {tone}. The oven always was on after picked up S from school. New things to try and questions to ask friends who are expert in baking. These old good time that I had slowly put away. I wanted to make some comfort food for Kim{ the piano teacher} and the family, so I went through some of my favorite baking book again and again. I think the Danish chocolate looks great! Perhaps a cheese cake as well?

I look round our home and moving around the plants. Some of them are doing so well! A few is slowly coming. Our south side is in the kitchen instead the living room, so moving them to the kitchen. The idea is hope they can get more light and be happy!  I also look around our home and though it might be the time to look through some S' older paperwork and might need to sort them through. The paper recycle bin is more than full. Some of the older books that she was studying with might be a good time to go through and decided what stay and what not! I am feeling a spring cleaning here! Do you?


Monday, January 30, 2012

Random: my new attempt

Weekends seem go by fast. fast.fast! I wish I could have a few hours more, aren't you agree with me? I am getting ready to see some flower blooms and ready to put my favorite shorts on and go on a bike ride! I am planning this ever so big summer vacation to west coast where we might hike somewhere and camp somewhere.. and have s'more for the treat.. um.. all sounds great in the cold winter days!
Last night, I began my new attempt! The original finished size is 13"x13", but I need to have smaller block measurements, so I was trying to do the math! I thought about getting a fancy quilting calculator, but I am not sure if I know how to use it if I ever have one!

It went great, but I need additional 1/4" seam allowance. 

Attempt# 2
This went really bad! It was 1/2" short on both side of the house and I hit the wrong sewing button! 

 Attempt #3 
After few adjustments. Number 3 came out nice, but still short on the top!

 Attempt # 4
Finally I got it right! Everything looks right and even! Do you know and probably already know  a 1/8" matters!

This is a very simple sewing block pattern. I love the simplicity of it. In the past, I never attempting to make sample blocks before start some bigger project, but I always ended up making mistakes. Sometimes, it was the cutting and sometimes was sewing machine setting hit the incorrect button! This time, I though I should take a little time to make some samples before my cutting! I was right!  Mistakes are good learning experiences! Although I get frustrated with it sometimes!

For a very long time, I have been wanted to make a house block quilt! I never take the action because I try to stay away triangle sewing and such, but as the time and more sewing that I have done. The triangle sewing seems simple and actually fun!

It is fun that I always take a photo of my pyrex bowl. It is a great way to put the fabric cuts and threads. I love my pyrex bowls { smile}!

These little house sample blocks are pinned on the wall quilt. I haven't decided what to do with these blocks! I might reassemble these blocks with other blocks from the past! It might be a good idea to start a kitchen sink quilt. 


Saturday, January 28, 2012

On the note

We spent our day home and did not attempt to leave the house. It is so pretty outside, but we are both lazy  and just wanted to be home and be cozy! I never get to show you the bathrobe I made for S for Christmas.  I used McCall's pattern M6225.  It is very simple and easy follow pattern. Although I made few mistakes on the sewing pockets, but it turns out cute! I think I needed one!She has been wearing it every night and loving it so much! The fabric was purchased during Joann's Thanksgiving big sale. I think I got 2 yards for 5 dollars. Later on I bough more sewing patterns from Joann when they were 99 cents. One of my sewing goal is learn to make clothes for S and myself.

I ordered some 30's prints and they came this past Thursday. Sort them into 30's print boxes. I am slowly collecting 30's print. I love retro style and colors! Sometimes, I think I have an older soul in me {smile}!  Before I have fancy storage unit, I have been storing fabric in these photos boxes. They are inexpensive and easy to find. I like the kraft paper style better. It has a clean look and outside has a metal where the label go to.  It really helps me to keep some fabric stashes organized.

The Kona Maize { alike yellow corn color} came as well. I am so ready to start S' 8th year-old birthday quilt. This is the fat eight bundle I purchased from Lizzy House awhile ago. I will added other prints as well. The idea of this quilt is {walking in the rainbow}. 

No much photos for today! It is the kinda of day that I just wanted to relax and slow down a bit. I have been running around last week after teaching class then rush to pick up S then took her to her music lesson. Today is the kinda of day that I have my own chance to take a {deep} breath and slow down! I wish I could have coffee, but my throat is still not acting right! It feels like I have not stop moving around and  have been keeping on a go!   It has been another productive day here! I am 1/10 away from my second MFA piece completed!  It is a good news for me on my mind!

Today I'd like to ask all of you for a favor.... PLEASE!

Our piano teacher had her baby girl Elsie Lorraine this past Wednesday! It is such a big surprised and happiness at the same time. Baby Elsie is 10 weeks premature! She has been placing in NICU for now. She is likely to stay in NICU till the end of the March. Today, I just received the the second email from Kim { the piano teacher}. Last night was the first time they get to hold baby Elsie. Baby is doing very well! When I saw the picture Kim attached my eyes were tearing. My oldest niece was 13 weeks premature,so I knew the challenge the family has to face!  But I hope that we can have more prayers send to her in the good thoughts! Hope the little body will be developing in the healthy and stable way!  Thank you for your kindness prayers! 


Friday, January 27, 2012

patchwork bucket

I must admitted I laugh when I taped { patchwork bucket} for this project! I am not sure if { bucket} is the right word, but that's how S called it! { My new bucket}! I used the longer and large fabric scraps for this {patchwork bucket} project. I have this project in mind for a very long time, but sometimes, yes it is excuse for not having time to make one!

When S was little I got her lots wooden blocks and she still enjoys them these days, but the funny catch up that I have with her lately is she is putting her name on many of them. Some of them are her stuffed animal's names and some were just shapes. She loves build houses from them and she is going to be 8 in 8 days! These blocks were in a original zipped bag that came with the order, but it was hard for her to pull out and zip back then she didn't want to play these blocks for a long time because of the heavy bag and hard to pull out from the toy box.

When we rearranged the apartment I found my first {patchwork bucket} that I made when S was one. Everything is hand stitched. I didn't have a sewing machine back then and I was making bags mostly. I enjoy hand-stitch everything! This bucket was for her dippers and bottles back then. When I found it again, I gave it to S for her wooden blocks. However the bucket is a bit small to hold all the blocks.Then the problem is that I was seeing blocks everywhere in our apartment. oh.. yes! That did make me crazy for awhile! I would stepped on them and it really hurt! ouch is the word! 

I used the lid that I have from my biggest pot as drawing template! It worked! Although I would love to have a real compass for my sewing project.

This bucket holds all the wooden blocks and still have some room on the top! It is Perfect. perFect. perfect size and shape for S!! She Loves Loves it!

She asked me if I can make a few more for her other toys! I shall will be able to use up more scraps! Recently I really try hard to used up my scraps and finished some older projects rather then start something new and feeling pressure to finish. I love these small projects that allow me to finish on time and feel accomplished!


Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Wednesday: in and about

Today is Wednesday and I think it is time to take a day off and stay home away from school and people. I have missed my {Wednesday: in and about} very much! I haven't been able to sew since my last two posts. I have been under the weather for a week now. Some serious throat irritation occurred last week after teaching the class, then I was never able to talk again after last weekend's rest and lots honey water with lemon. I do fee better as today, but still try not to talk if I can. No worries!

Some longer strips fabric scraps were used up today for a small project. It is hard to find a compass that's big enough for me to make bigger circles, so I used my cooking pot lid as the drawing template and it is just the size that I was looking for.  It helped out to trace two circles today, but I still would like to find a compass.

The 30's print project is slowly putting together. I sew three blocks per a day, but I 'd love to get more done! Two weeks ago, I have ordered the Kona solid for S' 8th birthday quilt, but it hasn't arrived. The quilt might not even get started when her birthday comes! It's a bit disappointed!

I'd like to take a moment to {thank you} for all the kind and sweet comments on the patchwork zippered pouches. It is very nice of you stopped by and check out here..  I intended to show you the finished project that I did today, but the light went bad when I finished it. I might need to take some photos tomorrow when we get home.  



Monday, January 23, 2012

Alphebet Day: F is for

 F is for Favorite!

Are you surprised that I didn't save {F} for fabric? I though {favorite} would be more fun for the letter {F}. S and I have same favorite sweet that we love! That is chocolate! I think I pass my sweet tooth to her while she still inside of me. For some reason, I couldn't say no to chocolate, so does her! It is the most amazing sweet that's been created! Each day after school, we both could have one piece of chocolate. We eat it bit by bit and share what we like about the flavor. um... She has a cup of  milk to go with hers and I have a cup of bitter coffee.

My favorite time of this season is seeing these Snowflakes on the window! They are not just pretty, but they are also telling me stay inside!  I love how the irregular shapes are formed on the window.

Our favorite dinners have been soups! Soup is what warms us up during the night time meal and we found ourselves feeling satisfy. The slow cook has been great for me that I can make two pots a week and have the soup all week long.

The most delicious and favorite drink is honey mixed in the warm water and added a slice of lemon. It is such sweet and nice drink during the winter time!

My favorite shopping goods is fabric, of course! Who can resist not buying pretty fabric? I am having trouble to say no! I love how each fabric has different personality and we can bring them together and make quilts or totes from them.

The favorite thing to do is sewing! I love patchwork so much! It always allow me to concentrate on the project. I still watch movies when I am sewing! Of course that has caused some sewing mistakes and injury! One time I sew my shirt with fabric and didn't realized it until I was done a few sewing patches.  oh dear~ 

Do you have anything that's on your favorite list? My list isn't end, but I didn't want to give you a long list to start the week. This week seems like the weather is going to be better and nicer! We hope to get a day to walk around the area, but if it gets icy we might need to stay indoor for now!  


Friday, January 20, 2012

Patchwork Zipper Cases

 side: a

It is always a good feeling transform the small scraps fabric into something useful. My big bowl of scraps is finally low and light. I sort the sizes over the break then picked out the ones that are small, irregular sizes or semi bigger than small sizes. Sometimes, it is great just use the small and medium sizes together.For the larger pieces, I use them for something else. Sometimes, I patch the larger scraps and make them into a quilt.


The original plan was making two small mats for the kitchen table, but they were too small. I am glad I made two zipper cases instead. I really like the sewing method. For the irregular sizes which I didn't need to trim them into squares and it created some fun { patch.y look}. I also used scraps batting for this project.

Did you see the Heather Ross' F.F.A piece? That's the only one piece that left in my whole stashes. I think it was a good placement for it! Lately I have been making many of my sewing from the scraps or pieces that I pieced in the past. The idea is used up every bit of it! Sometimes, it is crazy for us {quilters} to spend { dollars after dollars} to buy a piece of fabric. I know you are with me on this! We just can't {resist} to let these pretty fabric go!

There are the tiny, bitty, mini ones.. I save them for another ticker tape quilt. from Amanda Jean at Crazy mom quilts.  I love how simple and easy this method went and it really saved every pieces of the scraps! I made my first ticker tape quilt  for a friend and S has been asking one for kiki, so I will be busy this weekend and make some magic here.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

For Mila: Patchwork bibs

This morning, I woke up in the smell of delicious lamb soup that I put in slow cook last night! S and I both are excited about fresh food for tonight! Um, it has been the kind of the week much leftovers were served at the dinner table, but this time we both didn't complain about it. We knew it has been a long week and rough in weather! 

Finally, I got these bibs done! The patchwork parts were done in long time ago, maybe 2 years or more. Sometimes, I would just take small pieces of fabric and do the random piecing without a project in mind. Over the break, I found a large pieced fabric and a small pieced one, so I decided to make them into bibs for Mila. It is a super late Christmas gifts. Sometimes, I prioritized some projects over than the other ones, but it is really a simple sewing that I could have done right away.  According to Mila's mom that she is starting soft food now, so I think these bibs are just in time for her stage!  We'll be seeing her today, so hope it fits her nicely!

Another bitter cold day here! I put on my snow pants and snow boots for the first time in this winter season. Last night, I had a thought. I'd like to move somewhere is warmer, somewhere that we can still enjoy some outdoor activities during the winter season. I am thinking somewhere in the south.... {but} it was just a thinking.. I won't tell you how much I dislike the heat!


Wednesday, January 18, 2012

{sew}, I changed my mind!

I hope you are staying inside and drinking lots hot coco, tea, or coffee. It is {-8} here , but the wind chill brings it down to {-33}. We barely made our day here! It is hard to drive and a student's car almost hit my car this afternoon. The silky snow really made this weather worse! It is the kind of the day to stay inside and do something cozy and fun!

Over our holiday break, last weekend. I discovered a box of fabric that I cut into 2.5" squares a long time ago. This is a project that I started in summer 2009.  I met a few ladies in the local quilt shop and got really interested in making hexes. It started with passionate and the process of making things by {hands}. I also did a smaller project here.  I was making these little hexes all day long and had great time with it.

Something happened at that time, which I cannot recall now. I think the lady that work with me on this project had surgery on her left eye then I never see her in the shop! Slowly it wasn't any fun of making this project just by myself. Slowly it got put away and ignored.

These prints are mainly 30's reproduction fabric. I love the small prints, but now I tended to buy larger prints of fabric or more vibrate color schemes. These fabrics reminded me much of my grandma! When I was a child, she often rode the bus to visited us from the county. She always wore small floral print fabric clothes.I love how these prints reminded me of her! She has been gone for nearly 8 years now, but I still think of her whenever I feel life is bitter or miss home! She lived in a very challenge era and had more than 8 children and not to talk about the ones that were miscarried. But she lived and survived, I think of her and I often {smile}!

When I pulled the box out I kept thinking what happened last 3 years. I knew I won't be making the quilt in the same idea that I had 3 years ago, but I knew I'd love to give these fabric a new look and new life. This is the block that will be transform into. The layout has not been decided, but I would love to have all the small squares pieced and lay them on the floor and decide when they are done in the blocks.

What to do with these hexes?? Any good suggestions?  It will be great if I can make something from these.
 They are 3/4" hexes, pretty small!

I might extended the small joins into larger ones then I might be able make it into a mini quilt?

 Here are the solid Kona fabric that I have. Still haven't decided what to make.

We drank lots hot coco when we got home! The heat has been turning up and the room still is cold! Hope the good weather will come soon!! We'll stay inside and keep drinking hot coco or pots of tea { for me}. Soup sounds delicious for tomorrow night's dinner!