Saturday, March 27, 2010

A quilt for Grandma

My husband's grandmother turned 87 this week, and so I made her a quilt. I thoroughly enjoyed making it. It's a Tranquility charm pack plus some putty and chocolate brown solids. It went together really quickly -- I love charm packs!
The top was a little more traditional than I usually do, so I decided to try something new with the quilting.
I don't know what you'd call these. To me, they look like olives or corn kernels. I love how they turned out!
And then I stippled the putty sashing and left the brown alone. At one point I put some straight-line quilting in the brown, hated it, and ended up breaking out the seam ripper. I'm glad that I did, even though I really don't like picking out quilting!
And the back is a blue floral from my stash. Happy birthday Grandma!

Telephone Table

We're moving this week, and I've been picking up pieces to decorate my new house.

And last week I bought this beauty at a garage sale. Love it! I can't wait to refinish it.
It's an antique telephone table.
It needs some love... and probably some glue as well.
possibly some stain.
Definitely some pledge.
and lemon oil.
and some Watco.
But without a doubt it needs a new seat!
{Nice picture of my shoes, eh?}

The new kitchen is done in blue. It's VERY committed to blue, actually.
Now, I don't really do blue, but I am branching out and embracing it!
So this is the fabric for the new seat. It's going to be something in teeny half-square triangles. And the top fabric will be used for the curtains as well.
Stay tuned!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

black and white blocks

Yesterday I took an hour or so to just sew creatively, without a plan or a real purpose. Sometimes I just need to do that.....

anyway, I sat down with my black and white box and 6 different colors, and here is what I came up with:
And I landed on a happy accident -- these blocks that look like a window:
They are my FAVORITE!! But now I don't know what to do. Help!
So I have 3 window blocks that I LOVE. And in total I have 13 blocks made. So should I....

1. Make more of the window ones to complete a whole window quilt?
2. Use it all together and just accept that the window ones are my favorite?

and.... should I add more colors? if so, which ones?

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Quilting bee, anyone?

I've been wanting to join a quilting bee for quite a while. But I always seem to have my timing wrong! So I thought.... why not host one?

ABOUT.... A quilting bee is a group of people who sew blocks for each other. Each person is assigned to a month. On your month, you choose fabrics and a pattern or an idea for quilt blocks. You send out instructions and fabric to the group. And everyone else in the group sews blocks for your quilt on your month. Usually there are 12 people in a quilting bee, and the commitment lasts for a year.

RESPONSIBILITIES... Every month you would make 2 blocks for another group member and mail those blocks to that person. One month in the year you would purchase fabric and send it and instructions to all group members. Since it is a year-long commitment, please think carefully about whether or not you can make 2 blocks each month for a year.

POSTING.... I'll be creating a flickr group for this quilting bee. I'll ask each member to post their inspiration quilts, their fabrics, and their completed blocks on the flickr group.

TO SIGN UP... please send me an e-mail to wendyleep {at} gmail {dot} com with the following information: your name, your physical address, your e-mail address, and your blog address. 12 people can sign up to participate. I'll also take a couple of alternates in case someone drops out during the year.

Looking forward to a year full of fun!!

UPDATE: the bee is now full.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Super-fabulous chocolate-cherry brownie bites.

It's your lucky day.
I am hooking you up with how to make THESE:
Now, I want to be very very clear and say that this is not an original recipe, it is an adaptation of this recipe, which I would have used except the main ingredient is not available in grocery stores in my area.

So I had to improvise. I ended up with a nice little easy recipe that is fairly inexpensive to make. And I'll share that with you, friends!

So here we go.

1. Go purchase your favorite brownie recipe. I say go for the fancy one with chocolate chunks, but whatever you want will work. Make sure it calls for adding water.

2. Get 2 jars of maraschino cherries and a can of chocolate frosting. Not the whipped kind.

3. Make the brownie recipe. Except substitute cherry juice for the water called for in the brownie mix, and add some chopped up cherries. About 1/3 cup. More or less. Suit yourself.

4. Grease mini-muffin tins. Mine made 36 mini-muffins. Put the batter in the muffin tins, being careful not to overfill. Bake about 12 minutes at 350. Let them cool and then carefully remove from the pans (most definitely the most difficult part!)

5. Scoop out a dollop of the chocolate frosting, and microwave it for 30 seconds. Stir, and then dip the tops of the brownie-muffins in it. Then stick a cherry in the icing. See, easy!

Now, these did not keep well. I'd suggest making them the day you are using them. Or ice only what you can use that day and freeze the rest?

But they are fabulous! So fabulous! Happy eating, friends!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

A tea party...

We had a tea party for my daughter's first birthday. I had asked for help with the invites.

I wanted to give the kids an activity when they first arrived, and many different ages of children were coming. So I drew a teacup for them to color and make copies. (There was a teapot as well, but I'm not as proud of it....).
My daughter needed a fancy outfit, so I found a onesie that said Baby's first birthday at Kohl's, and I made her a bubble skirt to match it.

Now, I don't usually sew clothing because I'm dreadful at it. But I wanted something specific, and I found the cute blue roses print at Jo-Ann's for $1.50/yard and couldn't resist.
We had a parfait bar. Everybody likes parfait, right? I think so.
I made special hair bows for my girls. The one on the left is my younger daughter's. The one on the right is my older daughter's. Her skirt was made out of the pink roses print.
Found these fabulous plates at the after-Valentine's day sales at Target. Awesome!
This was quite possibly the hit of the party. These little things are AWESOME! And easy, and quick and relatively inexpensive to make. I'll be posting a recipe in the next few days so stay tuned....
And here's the birthday girl modeling her hairbow... such a sweetie! Can't believe she's 1 year old!

Monday, March 1, 2010

another string

Still working on string quilts. I wanted to experiment with quilting on these, and I had 10 extra blocks from my big string quilt. And so I made 2 more to make this:I think it's going to be another donation quilt. I really like it, but I think it's a neat piece to donate to the silent auction. It's a good baby quilt size, and it would be lovely for a little boy or a little girl. I used straight-line quilting, which is not my favorite, but it worked well here.
I bound it in a red dot, and I used an apple-printed flannel for backing. The quilt itself is so heavy that I didn't use batting. It gives the quilt a slightly different feel, but I think it would be great as a summer baby blankie.
I really enjoyed this project!