Friday, May 30, 2008


Here's the full BabySchool quilt picture. It just came home for it's first weekly wash. With any luck it will be tough enough for many weekly runs through the machine.

Ok, so calling all cat-knowing folks: I have a problem.

My AMAZING veggie box (complete w/ herbs, tomato plants, squashes...etc) gets pooped in on a very regular basis by one very naughty and very orange fluffy cat.

Any ideas of how to get it to stop using my veggie box as it's litter box? Please don't tell me to get a dog...I'm sure it would work, but I'm allergic!

I am also obsessed with some online shopping items, that I just may have to order due to 'not being able to live without them'.

1) This top from anthropologie - the purple one is the one I'm after. I'm wondering if you can fit a belly the size of my belly under so?

2) This CD from Colon Meloy - front man for The Decemberists - oh, what an awesome band. I need to get this music!

3) This book: Friday Night Knitting Club - I need something light to kick off the summer reading .

4) This bike: (bad interface for this site, check out the "Classic 3") Ok, like I can ride a bike in my current state, I know, I can hardly waddle to the bathroom every 20 min....but Oh, I would love to ride this down to the farmer's market on Saturday mornings. It's begging for a Longaberger basket. PS, I'm probably the worst or least-talented bike rider you've met. Perhaps I could reconsider and get a trike. Harder to fall off of, right?

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Quilt binding - getting in a bind and getting out of it too

I really really wanted to bind that Japanese Kid's quilt in red, but I had a billion small pieces of red fabrics, and none of them had enough to make it around the outside by themselves.

How much binding does one need? Well, take all the sides of your quilt, add them up, and add 10 inches (or 25.4cm to be exact). That should buy you enough binding to get around the whole quilt.

So my nutty solution was to take 1 cut piece of each of the reds (2.5 inches wide), so the quilt has these 6 or so funky binding colors that travel around it.

Playful solution, but it got the quilt done on time for it to already have been enjoyed at nap time earlier today. Our son was super proud of it, and showed it to his favorite teacher as soon as he got to school.

I was catching up on my blog reading and this post by Oiyi almost laughed me out of my office chair. She made a katamari ball that not only looks like the one from the video game, but it actually works just like the game by being magnetic and picking up anything in it's path.

Wow, this was a bright spot in my day. Bravo Oiyi!! This is so rockin! I want to be cool enough to make one too!

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Japanese Quilt for kids

It's a holiday weekend here in the US, so we have Monday off as well.

I'm taking advantage of it by finishing up this Japanese kid's quilt that I started for my son a couple of weeks ago.

All the fabrics are Japanese imports, mostly bought at Purl.

I cut very wide pieces of all the fabrics I love, and made a reversable quilt with an animal theme on the front side and a car theme on the back.

By quilting lines across it, I made sure it would come together fast, and hold up to washings.

It will be packed off to school and enjoyed for many many naps. I think life is a little extra good when you still get to have a regular nap every day.

Recently, I started to read and really enjoy Ravenhill blog. Emily writes this blog from Norway, and has some seriously inspirational crafty work going on here. There is a recent post there that talks about Liberty fabric, as well as a couple pictures of Japanese taupe fabric.

Her list of blogs she's reading is also very impressive, you may want to check out some of the links.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Something old...something new...

For the last week, we have been traveling like mad.

We visited the mid western United States for the wedding of some very good friends. While we were in that neck of the woods we also caught up with some of the family on my husband's side.

The trip was nuts, too short, and lovely all at the same time.

At the wedding, the bride really looked like a timeless beauty.

Speaking of timeless, I have run into a few blogs lately that are devoted to historic quilting. I think these adorable blocks from the civil war period as well as the colors and fabrics are as elegant as you can get.

If you know of others, please turn me on to them, but here's what I've been reading lately:

- Inspired by Antique quilts - check out this postage stamp quilt in progress - hello beautiful!

- Brown Quilts - some really cute civil war blocks being made here...

- Will work for Fabric - more civil war blocks, so pretty.

- Quilt in Me - some more antique-looking creations here, as well as a lot of beautiful hand work.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Fabric calligraphy tips

A few questions came in about the calligraphy so here's a couple more tips.

Yes, I do use freezer paper on the back for stability. I find that it keeps the fabric from moving around while you are writing, and I pretty much use it every time. I just rip off a piece, and iron it to the back.

I don't need to heat set it, because I use pigma pens, and they are forever without heat, so be careful, don't write on your white pants while using them! They come in all sorts of colors and thickness.

I get some inspiration from various books on the form of the letters as well as some of the fancy loops. My favorite book is called The Technique of Copperplate Calligraphy by Gordon Turner, ISBN 0-486-25512-3.

If you have some extra lunch money burning a hole in your pocket, perhaps you want to surf on over to Purl and pick up one of their Liberty of London fat quarter packs.

Liberty fabric (to those who are lucky/crazy enough to own some) is what fabric looks and feels like in heaven, I think.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Happy Mother's Day

Hope your Mother's day was as great as mine was.

I woke up this morning to our 2 yr old bouncing into my bed saying, "Get up Mommy! Open cards and presents! We bought you a new camera!"

I thought, wow, maybe they got me that Diana plastic camera I've been eyeing!

Well, they did, however...there was also a new very fancy DSLR in store for me as well.

Wow is all I can say. I guess I need to step up the blog photography to the next level!

Hope all you mom's out there got to have a very nice and relaxing day.

I'm thankful for my own mom (my quilting mentor) and all the love she constantly showers on not only me, but my husband and son as well.

Friday, May 9, 2008

Babyschool quilt

Our 2 yr old son drags a tiny little infant blanket to school with him, which is way too small, so I decided to quickly put together this little quilt for him.

Luckily, I picked up this farm house fabric when I was at the Purl Soho warehouse in S. California some time ago. I got this green and red color as well as pink.

I couldn't find it on their web site anymore, but I did find it on Superbuzzy, and wow, it's even on sale. There used to be some there in taupe brown colors, but (ahem) somebody just bought the rest of that bolt.

Different topic: Are you hooked on Woot yet? Do you Woot? Have you gotten something cool from this month's Woot-off?

Apparently, all the dude-geeks (yes Carlos, that means you) already know about this, and I'm the last to visit this incredibly cool, super clearance, electronics web site.

And I promise to say more to answer your fabric calligraphy questions next post, I swear.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

FMLA, CA PDL, CFRA, and other such evils

Oh, if you know what any of the above acronyms stand for, God bless you, as you have been through the hoops to take a maternity leave from your job.

Trying to figure out what all these overlapping leaves mean to me personally has been our project for the evening. I feel like I now have a PhD in the subject.

Above is another of the world's tiniest pin cushions, this time w/ a pin for scale. It's a strawberry with a little flower on top, in case you didn't guess that.

On a lighter note, I went to the coolest nursery today with my friend Sharon, and we scored some seriously cool veggies for the upcoming season.

Think I'm most excited about the 4th of July tomato that is supposed to be at least 10 days earlier than Early Girl, and will actually give you fruit for the 4th of July picnic!

Now THAT would be something!

What's going in your planter box this year?

Saturday, May 3, 2008

World's tiniest pincushion

I have developed a fetish for making the worlds tiniest pincushions.

They are so addictive, and I'm started to make them in all sorts of fruit shapes. This little tomato was shipped off to Zegi inside the little bag, to kick off her collection of sewing goodies in there.

I used wool roving from Bird Brain Designs along with some other wool fabrics for the top leaf that I've collected over the years.

Being tempted to make billions of these in every fruit flavor, and opening an Etsy shop....perhaps I should be restrained before I give up my day job to create these all day long.