Wednesday, February 29, 2012


 You know that scene in the Chronicles of Narnia when Lucy walks into the snow laden woods, that is what this morning is like. Keep in mind yesterday all of nature was sporting her best winter russets, chestnut and chocolate colors. Not today, she is ready for the red carpet in the most glorious winter white.

Last night the tree outside our house was covered in ice, as of 10 o'clock pm it was still raining. This morning the world was transformed.  

At 7 am school was a mere two hours late, a half an hour later all the schools around us were closed.

There was a bit of early morning celebrating and pancake making.

It is still going, still snowing, I for one love it. I know it will be gone soon but these and rainy days are my favorite! How is it where you are?

Monday, February 27, 2012

I love Weekends

Two years ago I posted about these 70's Hexagons, mentioned them in last Fridays post, and started the process of un-assembling them and re-assembling them. They were started by my mother-in-law many many many years ago. She had all the blocks together, all sewn by hand and done very nicely. I was just going to add the white and put them together. However, I found that I could not make them fit nicely without her original measurements. Although, she did a great job they were pieced with a simple (eyeballed?) quarter inch seam. I find the exactness of English Paper Piecing to work better.

So I took them apart and have been slooooooowly putting them back together on a 1 inch hexagon cut from card stock. I love the (below) pattern with the little birds, trains, spools and such. I decided to set a goal of finishing one block a weekend. I still have stacks of them that need their card stock template, but I do them as I go


. This weekend I accomplished the creation of the above block, the start of the one below and the making of the many hexies above. I plan to do the whole of it by hand and have allowed for as long as it takes!

I love the deep blue of this flower and plan to pair it with the hexies above with the little prints on them. I wanted to show you the back. You can see the long stitches that hold it on the card stock but my favorite is the little tiny stitches that can be obtained using English Paper Piecing.

See how tiny they are. I am using a spool of thread that belonged to my mother, she hasn't sewn hardly a stitch in my lifetime so this could very well be from the late 60's. It is Molnlycke thread that is very strong. I did some research on it and as best as I can tell it is not made anymore.

We also made these cookies using this recipe. They were so yummy. The boys said this was the best frosting I have ever made.

They are supposed to mimic the Lofthouse Cookies, you know the ones I would marry if they proposed, the ones I hide from share with my family.

And finally, What stains your teeth more .... Coffee or Grape Soda?

It is once again Science Fair  season in our house. Let the experiments begin.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Feeling Stitchy and other Wonders

On the weekends we watch a lot of movies. My fingers get a little itchy just sitting there watching, sometimes I work on these hexies, which will take years at this rate.

Oops I digress, I have a basket by the couch filled with discarded and broken linens, yet even with their stains and holes I still find them charming and difficult to part with. They have history and therefore, must still maintain usefulness in some regard. So I stitch. I love- love how this one turned out. Plus, I love the even repetition of a simple back stitch. The pattern is a free download from Lark & Lola. She has three of them together- a super sweet chandelier, macaroon cookies and the silhouette. I hope to do the chandelier next.

On another note.... I was inspired by one of my favorite blogs, The Polka Dot Petticoat and her milk glass collection. She had the greatest kitchen ever! Its a... you show me yours, I will show you mine kinda day. Side note, the little blue jars are painted clear glass. I just spray painted them last summer or the summer before. Either or.

I fell in love with Milk Glass about 15 years ago when I went to my first auction. Caught up in the bidding I raised my paddle for a box of misc. glass things. I couldn't stop myself. It was like a mystery grab bag. I had to know what was in it. I spent a whole $5. Low and behold it held some pieces that are still a mystery and about 6 pieces of milk glass. I was really excited, I had never given the stuff a second look before that day. But we clicked. Plus, I outbid an older women and her dog and got to thrust my paddle in the air 3 times. I won. Whoot.
The picture below sports a few of the pieces that I scored.
(not the sweet lion, he is just eye candy)

As for the luncheon plates and cups above, well those were my birthday present from my sister. You may remember them featured here. My sister found them at a thrift store for 50 cents each. We were looking for luncheon plates for my super awesome niece's shower.
She got gifts and a rad tea cup, I got a toothache (thats another story) and these rad luncheon plates.
The shower and my birthday were on the same day.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Color Keeper

Continuing with things made.
 This one is not original aside from not having a pattern.
This is my interpretation of the classic crayon case.

As you can plainly see - C is for Cloe,
another great niece.

Oh you need a place to stash stuff on the problem.

I had a lot of fun using vinyl, as in the pencil pocket, in these cases and zippers from my vintage zipper collection.
If you could see the pencils better they have that great triangular shape, perfect for little hands.

In the end I included a couple of drawing and stencil pads. (Not pictured)
I also used flannel to make is super soft and comfortable to carry.
This really was quick to make.
 I actually have four others cut out but alas my machine is in the shop.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Pink Coffee Filter Heart Wreath

Hmmm Pink Coffee filter you say... Yes pink and a little brown. I had intended to make this little idea before Valentines Day but alas, time had better plans. So I made it for Presidents day. I thought I would show you how to make your own.

It is quite a peachy process and oh so easy.

The first thing is to prepare a colored dye concotion.
 I was going to use tea, which is what I usually use when I want to dye muslin but I did not have any african redbush, which makes the prettiest color.

I had to improvise. I put on my thinking cap for this and reached for food coloring.
So, some hot water some food coloring and a little coffee went into the pot.
About 6 drops or so. The filters will be lighter then the water.

Next, take a bunch of filters and stick them in the dye- all together.
I put some in and let them sit for five minutes or so.
The longer you leave them the deeper the color.
I did several batches because I wanted to vary my colors.
With the next batch I added a bit more coffee for a brownish tinge, because I like that.  

Now turn on your oven to 225 degrees
Squezze out excess liguid from said filters.
 lay your filters on a baking sheet
place in oven.
If you scrumple them (an actually method of imparting wrinkles) the color will be drawn to the creases resulting in some beautiful molting (I will show this later on down).

Sorry I did not time them but checked them in ten minutes or so. It does not take.
The above pic is closer to their true color then the one below.

Once they are dry seperate and pile on your counter perferable with a lovely loaf of fresh rye bread destine to be make in to ruebens later. Feel free to toss them about as I did. They look a little peachy here but they are more pink like above.

 Assemble your crafting supplies.
 I used a heart shape wreath from Joanns, bought with a coupon and it ended up being pretty cheap.
One glue gun from the early 90's that heats up to about a bazzilion degrees
 and promises to leave you blistered.

Scrumple your filters. (refer above for scrumple definition) I smooshed the bottoms a bit and applied glue. Doesn't my index finger look scared already? and rightly so as I am nursing a burn on it as I type.

I first started Willy Nilly and then realized neither Willy or Nilly was making sense and they were both making things harder. Instead I put the kabosh on them and started glueing on the sides.

While Willy and Nilly were a little disapointed they did sit back and watch placing bets on how many burns I got. Nilly was winning at last count.
Are you wondering why there is a ball on a stick...Hmmm

These two pics show that pretty molting I was yammering on about earlier. Isn't it so pretty?

This is a very forgiving project, keep filling in around your wreath, burning fingers as you go (optional). In the inside I smooshed them with a long side to just fill in.

Smooshing and hot glueing. Glueing and smooshing.

All around the edges and in the middle.

I used a little hot glue on a tac and stuck it through some ribbon.
And hang.

Whoola a pretty springy pinky coffee filter wreath.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Mia Quilt

This began as a banner but begged me to make it a quilt.
The pattern can be found Here,
I used it as a guide because I am not a good listener.
If your mind wanders you may say, as my silly nieces did, why did you sew a bikini quilt.
 Its a banner not a bikini but whatever suits your fancy!
I did the whole thing on my little machine including the quilting which always makes me happy.
I made it in a night and part of a morning and bound it in an hour.
It was a whirlwind. A hurricane of sewing if you will.
Regardless it was hard to give up.
But it was for Miss Mia my great niece daughter of my niece who also owns this. and these.
I think a quilt like this earns me my title of Great Aunt. Cuz I am.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Where does your Barbie sleep?

This has been the brownest winter that I can remember. I am of the school of thought that if it is cold then there may as well be snow. At least it is prettier then the brown. Every creature is confused. Animals that should be sleeping are awakening to find that indeed it is  not spring only warm one day and frigid the next. Shrubs and trees not yet due to bud will start their spring training only to be frozen the next. In Minnesota you just expect snow. Ahem.

I wanted to share somethings I made for Christmas. Yes, I am aware that was almost two months ago. I am slow, we all know that. My niece Ella loves her barbies. So I created a carring case for her to drag them from place to place, as little ones are apt to do. Plus, they have their own bed it is like a Murphy bed and a portable closet all in one. Above the yellow rickrack are about 6 pockets made from vinyl as is the zipper pocket below the rickrack.

I sewed on the sleeping compartments and the pillows pretty snug so their inhabitants wouldn't fall out.

It all folds up and can be toted from place to place.

I did not have a pattern for this nor have I seen anything similar so I was pretty excited when I came up with it!! What do you think? My sister says I should create a pattern but I am on the fence on that.

Monday, February 13, 2012


I have kept a journal since I young when I wrote things like Chuckie said hi to me in math class today. Except I am sure it was more like, Oh my gosh like Chuckie totally said like hi to me in math class and I almost died.
You know an important chronicle of what mattered. I also have a recollection of reading my best friend's older sisters diary, in which, (I kid you not) each page started with....
Dear Diary,
      Well, nothing really interesting happened today.

Sometimes it would say nothing else.

       Every day she wrote that. We may have had some fun with that. (sorry Lori).

Many years ago I took my journal to a new level, inspired by altered art and my love of keeping a journal, I bought a blank sketch book and began to alter the pages. I posted about this a few years ago here if you want to see what they look like after an attack of a pen (another things I am really fond of...great pens).  

A few years ago I altered one for my niece to use. (Do you use it?)

I didn't take pics of that one.

Since my sewing machine has been at the doctor I decided to make one for Lilli who is in her second year of college.

These are some of the pages that I did. This one is painted with water color.

A lot of what I used is from my stash of stuff, some is from the K&S Smash line. Many are printables that I have accumulated over at Pinterest.

I love to journal...when I do it....but am not a daily writer. Sometimes not even weekly or monthly. Like most things it ebbs and flows. Inspiration strikes and then time just flies.

In my own journal I only do a few pages at a time. That way if I want to doodle or draw on a lovely white slate it is available.

One thing I have in every Journal and my planner (that I created and will post later as I am only two months in) is a tabbed page for words. Words I like, words I want to incorporate into my vocab or words I want to better understand. I just jot them down and look them up later.

I love love dots!!

This is Lilli's favorite page.
Do you journal?


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