I am no longer actively blogging here but I’d love if you could join me at my new creative lifestyle blog A Girl in Paradise.
I hope to see you soon.

Friday, December 31, 2010

Sew Fabulous Friday #2

Welcome to Sew Fabulous Friday. 
 A place to share any project that you have sewn yourself either by machine or by hand.

This week I finally finished curtains for my daughters room.  I know, pretty basic but they have been on my to do list for ages!

The rules are simple:

Please remember to link to your specific post, not the main page of your blog.
Grab my Sew Fabulous Friday button and add it to either your blog or post, and please no advertisements, websites, or giveaways.

I can't wait to see all that you can do with a needle and thread.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Work-in-Progress Wednesday

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

The kids home from school this week, so that means this momma has been very busy with Shrinky Dinks, Bottle Caps and countless of other kid craft and activities. I have to admit I had a blast doing the Shrinky Dinks.  I haven't done those in years!  Sadly my oven doesn't have a "window" so the kids really didn't get the full effect, but they were still in awe when they came out much smaller.

Have no fear though, I have gotten a little me time in.  The baby does have to nap and the older two value there lives and know better than to bug me to much with nonsense.  Also, I have been bargaining in leftover Christmas cookies and candy canes.  :)

Which means I have finally had a little time to finished my scrappy quilt...well the top, anyways.  Do you like?  I love it! 

Once the kids are back in school I'll pick up the filler, the backing, and then I can start quilting it.  No need to bring all three kids to the fabric store if I don't have to.  There isn't enough cookies or candy canes in the world to make that worth it. 

I have also pieced more of the Miniature HST's.  I just love these things!  Seriously, these bad boys are addicting. 

When I told my husband he just laughed and asked "does that mean you won't be making any more flowers?"  Sorry babe, better luck next time.

Follower Feature

Morgane over at Bear, Dolly, and Moi, made this beautiful Flower for her sister using my Fabric Flower Tutorial

I am totally loving the button.  Great job, and thanks for sharing! 

Check out more about Morgane and her great blog here.

She is very talented....just check out this partridge in a pear tree quilt.


Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Trash to Treasure

I'm linking up again to Sassy Sites, Trash to Treasure Tuesday.


This time I took an old egg cup and transformed it into a pin cushion.

The other day I was rummaging though my cabinet looking for something and sitting out there in front was this beautiful egg cup.  For some reason it hit me that this must become a pin cushion.  See what a little rest and relaxation will do.  It gets the creative juices flowing again. 

I have had this egg cup for years.  It once belonged my great Aunt Yvonne's and when she passed all the female relatives received pieces of her dish collection.  My grandmother didn't have the heart to trow away such unique collection.  Nothing matched, but the colors were bright and vibrant.  My Aunt definitely bought what she liked and these items sure matched her personality. 

I guess that is why I have never given it away.  I not much of a saver, so the fact that I still have it, and have never used it, says something about this piece.  I love the aqua color and the vintage style of the egg cup and I recently received this great red fabric from a friend that thought I could use it for something.  Thanks Cindy.  The two pair perfectly.


Monday, December 27, 2010

How was your Christmas?

Mine has been very quiet and relaxing...which is a gift within itself.  I hosted the family dinner on Christmas day and recovered from it yesterday.  LOL!  I am glad things will be getting back to normal soon and that the kids are home this week from school.  We don't have anything too exciting planned but I enjoy the chance to do the little things, like going to the playground, cooking, and Lego's.  My daughter got a lot of "craft stuff" for Christmas - a child after her mother's heart - So I have a feeling I will be making lots of Shrinky Dinks, bracelets, and bottle caps.  It was really was quite cute, in her letter to Santa she asked for "craft stuff and real lipstick."    

 One of the things I got for Christmas was uninterrupted time to sew.  I know jealous, huh?  It was heaven!

For a while now I been thinking about miniature quilts and HST, and how to make HST miniature.  I think I finally figured them out and will share later this week...or next depending on the kids.  :)

So, once I had a pile of these....

....I started making these, 36 HST and it is only an 8" block, Wow!

A little perspective. 

I really enjoyed pushing the "quilting" envelope, and will definitely be making more of these.

Happy Holidays!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Anne Marie from Gen X Quilters was the lucky winner of my Sew Fabulous Friday Link-up!

I just loved her pillow, and that little piggy ornament.  How cute!

Thanks to everybody who linked up!

I can't wait to see what you come up with next time.

Have a great Holiday and I will see you all again after the New Year!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Machine Embroidery - Note Cards

Machine embroidery on paper is easier than it looks, all you need is a design that is fairly open to punch out.  I am using a butterfly that I found here

To get started you will need:
Colored 8 1/2" by 11" Card stock - cut in half
White 8 1/2" by 11" Card stock - cut into 3 1/2" by 5" rectangles
Sticky - or similar self-adhesive, tear-away stabilizer product

Hoop your Sticky and tear away the top layer so the sticky is exposed.  Place your white card stock rectangle on the sticky and with a pencil lightly mark your center.  Load your hoop into your machine, making sure your needle lines up with your center mark, and punch out your design.

Remove from your hoop and cut away excess Sticky, leaving the remaining Sticky on the back of your card stock.  Mount it on your colored card stock and sew around the edges, then fold in half. 

Perfect for gifts or handwritten notes to our loved ones!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Sew Fabulous Friday

That's right I'm hosting my first Link-Up Party, and since it is my first time *blush* I will pick one link at random to receive a very special prize.

The rules are simple:

Link-up any project that you have sewn yourself, either by machine or by hand. 
I love handwork!  (Just wish I had more time for it.)

Please remember to link to your specific post, not the main page of your blog.

Grab my Sew Fabulous Friday button and add it to either your blog or post, and please no advertisements, websites, or giveaways.

I can't wait to see all that you can do with a needle and thread.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Work-in-Progress Wednesday

Is it already time for another WIP Wednesday?  Where did my week go?

Well it is all about Christmas here in Paradise and I have been working on presents.  Personalized Hooded towels anyone?  Quick, easy and perfect for any toddlers who still like to be bundled up after a bath.  I have 3 nieces on my list who will be getting one along with a pair of pajamas, but they need to be mailed, like yesterday!  I have 2 done already, but because I'm a poor planner, sadly they are not the ones that need to be mailed.  They are for a friend who lives locally.  That means I will be up late tonight!

With all that has been going on for the holidays, I think I might be slightly distracted.  I have been working on block tutorials....but my results have been less than stellar.  I think I see a seam ripper in my near future..... 

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Work-in-Progress Wednesday

Things in progress here in paradise.....

I am slowly but surely making some progress on my Scrap Quilt.  I love the way it coming along.  Sashing it with the white scared me a bit but I am glad I did.  The colors really pop.

Mainly I have been working on things for the craft fair this weekend.  I have all my bibs embroidered and I even thought of a cute way to package them.  Do you like?

Sorry not much else to report on but there is always the The To Do List (aka the things I wish to accomplish.)

Curtains for my daughters room
Scrap Quilt
Apple Core Quilt
Start a Memory Quilt for my oldest
Christmas Table Runner
5 Hooded Towels - Christmas gifts
Embroidered Coasters for Gram- Christmas gift

OMG when you put it on a list like this it gets real scary.  Good thing I adhere to a list like I follow a pattern.  Very loosely!  Let's just see where life takes us.  Till next time.....

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Trash to Treasure


Sassy Sites has a trash to treasure link-up and I couldn't resist.  Ummm, I think I have mentioned my addiction to fabric flowers of late.... so how about flowers made from neckties.

 I'm not quite sure what he did to it, but it is trash. The front of it is totally discolored. It isn't even worthy of the donation bin.

So trash....

.... turned into a treasure.

Perfect as a brooch or a clip for my hair.
If you want to make one for yourself, check out my Fabric Flower Tutorial here.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Machine Embroidery – Christmas Ornaments

I am always looking for some fun ways to incorporate machine embroidery into the crafts that I do, and a couple of nights I had a dream about this one.  The creative process is always better when it is quiet. 

I have used this product before from Pellon, called Peltex 72F Double-sided Fusible Ultra Firm Stabilizer, for another project a while back and loved the results when using it for machine embroidery.  It lays flat and almost never puckers or ripples.

If you don't have an embroidery machine, don't worry I'm sure other embellishments will do.  How about hand embroidery, applique, or screen printing?  You might have to change the order of my steps a bit, but I think it can still work.  I'm thinking about making a few in some of my favorite fabrics, (with no embellishments) to fill my tree.  I quilter just gotta have her fabrics represented.

I started by cutting to ovals from Pellons, Peltex 72F, and one oval of the same size out of a piece of paper.  Then I ironed a piece of white fabric, slightly larger than my oval to the side of peltex without the plastic backing.  Then I removed the plastic backing from the other side and folded my fabric over the edge and ironed down.

I placed some Sticky in my hoop and using that piece of paper I cut out earlier, I folded in half and half again.  Placed it on top of my fabric oval and placed it all inside my hoop on the Sticky.  Using the folds as my guides and a disappearing ink marking pen to marked my center.  Loaded it into my embroidery machine, making sure that my needle lined up to my center mark.

Then I punched out a design, one for the front and one for the back.

I placed the front on top of the back and sandwiched white piping in between, doing my best to pin in it place.   I placed satin ribbon at the top and top stitched around the edge.

Then, I was all done!  Do you like?

Have fun, play with it, and as always if you make one, send me the link. I love seeing what you come up with.

If your are looking for other great handmade holiday ideas, check out some of these great link parties.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Building Blocks - Opposites Attract

Building Blocks is something I have started to help quilters design their own quilt projects. Sometimes it starts with a block that speaks to you, but then what do you do with it? Most of my quilts have started this way. I make a block then build from there, (sometimes lots of trial and error), till I have a finished block forming a quilt.
I hope to leave you with a bit of inspiration each week, to follow your own quilting journey, but please remember this tutorial is for personal use only. Please do not make copies of this tutorial. Please do not sell items made from this tutorial without permission from A Girl In Paradise. Questions? Just ask.
This week it is 2 for the price of one with Opposites Attract.  I love this block because it is a great way to use those large print or novelty fabrics.  Also, I can see this block as a traditional red & white or black & white quilt. 
To make these blocks you will need to cut:
  • 4 - 1 1/2" strips of Red
  • 1 - 4 1/2" strip of Red
  • 1 - 3 1/2" strip of Red
  • 4 - 1 1/2" strips of Green
  • 1 - 4 1/2" strip of Green   
  • 1 - 3 1/2" strip of Green
Note: All strips are 44" long, the standard length of fabric. 

 Then cut your strip that is 3 1/2" into 5 rectangles that measure 8" by 3 1/2". 

Alternating your colors, sew your strips together, having your 4 1/2" strip in the center, as pictured below.

 Iron your seams in the opposite directions, as pictured below.  This will make your life so much easier when piecing together your block, you'll see.  :)

 Next cut into 5 - 1 1/2" sections and 10 - 2 1/2" sections.

 This will be how you construct each block, sewing all 4 sections together.

 Your completed block should look like this.  The back should be ironed as pictured below, with the seams going in the opposite directions.  There should be 5 blocks of each color, 10 total.

Now the fun part, laying out your blocks.  Below are some suggestions.

Opposites Together

Opposites Down the Center

In Rows

In Rows, only using one color....

...and the other color.

Have fun, play with it, and as always if you make something using this block, send me your pictures, or if you blog about it, send me the link, and maybe I'll feature it here.  I just love seeing what you come up with.