Monthly Archives: June 2013

Patriotic Patchwork Purse

June 28th 2013
Vacation Bible School just came to a close. The theme was Stand Strong: with God’s Love, Prayer, Friends and Family, Trusting God and the Bible. The K students I had (13)  really got the message, you should hear them shout  “STAND STRONG!!” I also had an assistant who was a great help.
(Hi Brianna!) So as a thank you gift, I made her this.
 (I love excuses to make something! )
Isn’t it so pretty? AND IT’S INSIDE OUT!! LOL. I covered the inner seams with binding.
I whipped it up for her one afternoon. It was perfect for the left over squares I had from this project.
I found these blue magnetic clasps (2 for 50 cents) on clearance at Joann’s , how perfect!
I used the leftover 2 1/2 inch squares and left over jelly roll strips for the top band, binding, and straps; much of which is from Stars and Stripes collection (shown below)
 from Riley Blake. I used the leftover backing from the same project I mentioned, for the lining.
  (Not from Riley Blake)
It’s a cross body style bag about 8″ x 10″ with an extra long strap.
Although I knew I would start with squares, I made the rest up as I went along!
As far as I’m concerned, I think the bag queen is from the blog Amy Made That! but a girl has to have something to strive for, right?
I think I want one!

Simply Retro Quilt Along

June 25th 2013
Look what my sister got me for my birthday last month! Thanks sis! XO
I am telling you, for gifts, hints are great but a direct link is the way to go! ; )
You can get Camille Roskelley’s latest book at her shop or take a sneak peek over here. But you really won’t need to. I can tell you that every thing in this book is fabulous and easy and total eye candy. Really!
With patterns running anywhere from $1.99 on Craftsy to $9.00, I figure if I like three patterns in a book, I’ve already got my money’s worth. Well, I can honestly tell you that this book was a steal! While I won’t be able to make every quilt the actual size, and I am tempted,  I am going to make something using every pattern. They are that good! Did I mention they were easy?I usually do things my own way, but following patterns is a great way to learn new techniques and the tricks of the trade that are so helpful when creating your own designs. They are invaluable learning opportunities!!

So I want to show you what’s up first. The pattern is called Swell (Not to be confused with her sewing machine cover pattern similarly called Just Swell, LOL, my version below)
This pattern is made of squares and rectangles and I really didn’t think much of it, but I became absolutely charmed with it!

It came together super fast and I was practicing my pressing of seams, this way and that way, to nest them, why even the back looks great! I don’t mind showing you!


I am becoming comfortable now, blending fabrics and not having it be exactly like the pattern or book, and find it to be quite liberating.  I decided to go with a red, white and blue color theme.
Why? I have scraps, I love that color combination and it’s perfect for theFourth of July!I didn’t take lots of pictures during the process because I was, well, enjoying the process. So I only have a few shots.

In addition, since my quilting skills have improved, my confidence level is up and frustration is down, YAY! This increases production and quality so I am not afraid to choose and cut my prettier fabrics anymore, the end product is so much more rewarding. I wonder if I am still a novice quilter?

The only delay I am experiencing is how to quilt it. I did not want to do anything linear yet I didn’t want a stipple either. I am leaning towards the Baptist Fan, but without the ruler!

Oh, and I am joining the Retro Book Quilt Along over here at Janaina’s blog. Follow along with the book and link to show your project posts.

Simple Retro Quilt Along
 Hop on over this week and see how many people have added projects!


Christmas Once a Month Project #6

June 15th 2013
I just want to formally thank Julie from the crafty quilter for this great idea of Christmas Once a Month projects.  Just add the tag below if you want to join in!

Christmas Once a Month at The Crafty Quilter

I have collected several Mary Engelbreit Christmas Craft books and while all my favorite projects have been marked for years, it’s only now that I feel “obligated” (in the best sense of the word) to get them done! This month’s project is from this book below.

A black and White checked Scottie, the best part is the back which is red corduroy.

I can’t tell you how long it took me to finally find red corduroy in a fabric store in sunny South Florida. Finally, when Wal-mart had the fabric close out, I found what I was looking for. But that was years ago! That’s how long I’ve been waiting to do this.
The book had a dog template on a grid. I just cut some tracing paper about 16 by 16 and drew it out free hand. It’s easier than enlarging on a copy machine or printer. Not bad, eh?
The directions said to lay out the checked on the bias (diagonal) that would explain the slight stretching I encountered.

I left out the piping because it was really just too much trouble since what I had was too small.

Although they recommended attaching the ribbon after the pillow was sewn, I knew better than that. Not only did I add ribbon for each side, I pinned it between the layers and sewed them right between the seams.  There was no bulk or untidiness.
Gold jingle bells on the “dressy” side and a
  “Santa Hat” brad on the “fun”side.

Someone over here already asked for this puppy, maybe Christmas will come early!


A Tote of Thanks

June 10th 2013
I don’t know why apples are associated with teachers, I always heard “an apple a day keeps the doctor away” but oh well!

Artistically speaking though, apples are great. They have a funky shape not quite round, almost heart-shaped and they come in a variety of colors. I especially enjoy illustrations of apples because they are rendered in so many ways and I almost always like them.  Check out what I made with this fabric collection Apple of my Eye by The Quilted Fish for Riley Blake
I ordered the fabric late meaning the whole collection was harder to find. But thank God for Etsy, you always find someone who has what you need there. I found several prints from the collection at The Little Fabric Shop online. (Thanks Angie)
I am finding, however, that I am creatively defiant when following patterns.
 I always have to do things a little different, (no stripes inside)
make it a little better, (magnetic closure)
and have it fit my purposes. 
See, I cut the fabric into strips like pattern said, except I cut a rectangle for the bottom.
 I also wanted it wider than the pattern, maybe to hold teacher papers.
(That didn’t work out though)
  I did cut everything first, but made a “prototype” to see how it would turn out. That was a good idea, it turned out well, but I made some mental notes for the next three.
 I can’t take all the credit because the original concept was from this pattern from the Magazine Quilts and More, Winter 2012 issue.

  I applied some pretty cool tricks I learned from the pattern like this french seam: a seam inside a seam, so it looks tidy!
but changed many things about it so it’s fair to do this.
I chose the red prints for the handles because it will camouflage the smudges that handles sometimes get from hands.
Huge perk, they are totally washable and dry-able!!
(So glad that classroom chart stand has a greater purpose!)

Good for all occasions.

It was especially challenging in the classroom this year
 and I really could not have survived without the support, encouragement, laughter, prayers and limitless venting time with these wonderful ladies.
Thanks girls!! XOXO

We laughed, we cried, we became the “East End Girls.” 

Anything is "Craftable"

June 7th 2013
Isn’t it true that sometimes you just want to make things prettier? Okay, maybe that’s just me. Other times? Well, it’s just not worth it.

In my house, there is a mystery of walking tape. Mostly, it disappears out of my craft area (more times than I care to count) and I am just too tired to pour out my wrath on any of the two possible culprits. So here it is, a non-sensical craft, I mean does anyone do this besides me? But I just want to show you, that almost anything is “craftable!”

This one is NOT considered to be part of the Christmas Once a Month Project so I’ll share this now instead of the 15th!

 First, take your regular scotch tape dispenser.
Then, take it apart.

Choose your favorite card stock or paper with a print or pattern.

I chose a scrap piece of Christmas paper and traced the dispenser card (backwards) on the paper.

Cut it out and there you go!
If you used card stock that will be firm enough to put in the dispenser. If you used paper, just glue it to the one it came with (like I did) use a glue stick!

Pretty and functional! (Did I really have to tell you to put it back together?)

Now all your Christmas wrapping supplies can stay together.
Unless of course, the cuteness of the dispenser makes the tape walk.