Thursday, September 29, 2011

Powerless or Powerful???

What do you do when your power's off for 6 hours and you're all alone???? That was the question I faced Wednesday. SCE sent a notice out saying the power would be shut off from 9am-4pm for some maintanence work. I was hoping it wouldn't happen. Afterall it was forecasted to be the hottest day of the week... upper 90's... uuuggghhhh! I couldn't get on the computer  :(  ... or sew (the horror!)... or watch tv  :(  ... or vaccuum (I could do without that) or do laundry (another thing I wouldn't miss!). I considered going back to bed and sleeping all day.... naaaaa.... can't do that! So what did I do??? I cut... and cut... and cut... and pinned... and cut some more. My rotary cutter was rotary afterall!  :)  I used the light of the sun... listen to the radio on my cell phone... and cut... I actually got a lot done! I didn't really take pictures of the cutting (I don't know why) but I did take them before the cutting and after the cutting. I'd like to share my progress with you now.

PROJECT 1:  Happy Quilting Stars Quilt-A-Long Quilt...

Tuesday was the 'getting the quilt top together day'. I layed my striped backing fabric on the floor and then figured out the layout for the quilt top. I had made 36 stars but ended up only using 24 for the quilt. I will use the other 12 for a future project or projects. Here's the layout I came up with...

Then I took them to the table and cut them all down to a wonky 12-1/2" before sewing them all together. Here's the completed top without the borders...

Wednesday (no power day) I cut the two borders for the quilt top. I used part of the striped backing sheet for the first 1" wide border. Then the batik for the larger border. When the power was restored around 3 (an hour early... yeah!) I sewed the borders on... made dinner... ate... then finished the quilt top! This is actually my first real quilt. All I've made before this are runners, pot holders and a couple of mug rugs. Here it is!  :)

Here's a close up so you can see the borders better. I'm going to use one of the purple prints, from the stars, for the binding. I think it will really set it off.

PROJECT 2:  Fat Quarter Stars Quilt-A-Long...

This Quilt-A-Long started on Tuesday, September 27. There will only be one new star every other Tuesday... very easy to handle! Here are the fabrics I'll be using...

The large brown floral print fabric at the bottom of the above picture is another vintage sheet I found. I'll be using it for the backing and maybe a border. On Wednesday (no power day)... I cut the fabric for the 1st star block. Thursday I managed to get it pieced together. I'm on time with this one... yeah! It was both frustrating and fun to work with those tiny inside star pieces.  :)

PROJECT 3:  Birdie's Stitches Block of the Month...

I came across the Block of the Month way late (it began in January), but I just have to do it! It's too cute! If you don't know what I'm talking about you really need to go and check it out here. I picked out my fabrics last week and ordered them. I choose Moda's new Sophie line by Chez Moi. The charm packs arrived last week and the yardage arrived Tuesday. It's so yummy!!!! I loved it online and love it even more in person! It's so rich! I love the pink, red and aqua, plus the other colors aren't too bad either! ;) 

Here are the fabrics I'm using... from left to right...
  • Backing... Pink Sorbet Paisley Floral
  • Binding... Tomato Soup Simple Flower
  • Border... Blue Fiesta Leafy Swirl
  • Sashing... Moda Bella Broadcloth in Betty's Pink
  • Border around Center Squares... Sophie charm packs
  • Center Squares... Moda Bella Broadcloth in Ivory

I spent a lot of time cutting these on Wednesday (no power day). I almost hated to cut into the fabric. It's so pretty! I cut 280, 2-1/2" squares out of the charm packs. I actually only needed 240 but I messed up. I decided to go with the flow and cut two extra of the 8-1/2" center squares, so 14 in total. The quilt only uses 12 so I'll have two extra to use for something else later.  :)  When I was done cutting it all I started pinning them together so I'd be ready when the power came on.  :)

I actually didn't work on this again until Thursday because I wanted to finish the Happy Quilting's Stars Quilt-A-Long quilt top first.  :)   On Thursday I started sewing all those little squares together. I worked on them most of the day. Before dinner I had them all sewn together into groups of 4 and 6. They are now ready to sew onto the center square. Hopefully I'll work on that on Friday. After I get them done I'll pick out my embroidery floss and begin stitching.  :)

I did layout one of the squares so I could see how it would look. I like it!  :)

I actually accomplished quite a bit the last few days. I guess the power outage wasn't so bad afterall. I still have those two aprons (for me!) all cut out and ready to sew, but I didn't get to them this week. Oh well... maybe next week.  :)  I have so many things I want to make right now. It's really hard staying focused.

For me sewing & quilting has given me a new purpose and renewed energy in life. It's just what I needed. Thank you for inspiring me, visiting me and checking out what I have going on. I really appreciate it and you!

Have a Fabulous Friday!

Until next time...
Cherise  :)

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

My latest Thrifty finds...


I managed to get to a couple of thrift stores this past Saturday. I took lots of pictures of my thrifty finds to share with you.

I managed to find two vintage sheets, one newer sheet & matching pillowcase (too cute to pass up), and three vintage pillow cases.

Below is the print on the newer sheet & matching pillowcase. How cute is this???!!! Aqua background with red & pink lobsters, and white flowers with green leaves. I squealed with delight when I found this! Mr. hunky dude didn't understand why I liked this pattern so much. Don't you just see this as an apron? It would work well for other projects too. I love it!   :)

I love this next vintage sheet! It's so warm and inviting! I will definitely be making a quilt with it. I'll add some dark brown, with pink, yellow and blue to match it. Can't you just see it? This one makes me smile!  :)

I found a sheet and two pillowcases in this next fun pattern. Love the polka dot background!  :)

This one was a pillowcase. Love the vintage vibe! So warm!  :)

I also found five zippers in great colors! I see zipper bags in my future!  :)

Next I found these awesome shot glasses! They are acrylic. I'm not sure if they're vintage or not but I love them! My hunky dude didn't understand this one either. How could I not get these?!!!  :)

Remember when I told you I collect salt & pepper shakers? I never really look for them but if they pop up and I like them I get them. This weekend I came across quite a few of them... four sets to be exact. Most of them were only $1. The first set are little cottages. The shaker on the left is the back with the front on the right.

The next set reminded me of my mom. She passed away in February and loved yellow roses. I will think of her every time I see these. I miss her! I also love these because they are shaped like milk bottles.  :)

Look at the top of them... how cool is that?!!! Love it!  :)

The next set has a vintage vibe. They are triangle shaped in aqua and white. I love the lettering on them, as well as the color!  :)

The last set I found was the most expensive, at $5 but well worth it! A snowman and santa hugging on a tray. Aren't they cute?!!! Such vivid colors too! Love them!  :)

I remembered to take pictures of my salt and pepper collection to show you. Here's one of the whole collection...

Then I took closer pictures of the top shelf (see next three photos)...

and the bottom shelf (see next three photos)...

I have some old... some new... none borrowed... but some with blue!  ;)

Thanks for sharing my thriftying finds and my salt and pepper collection with me. Do you thrift? What do you look for? What do you collect?

Have a Wonderful Wednesday!

Until next time...
Cherise  :)

Monday, September 26, 2011

The Apron Swap Revealed...

My swap partner Donna received her apron today! Yeah! Now I can show you the pictures! Let me start at the beginning... I was to make either a Halloween or Fall apron. Donna said she didn't care which one. She loves purple so I decided to go with Halloween since I could incorporate purple easier with that holiday.  :)

Here's the fabric I choose...

Of course I had to add rick rack (love it!) and purple buttons! I just love details! I was just going to use the black rick rack but when I was sewing it I decided it needed some purple too!

Here it is!

I love the way it turned out! I changed the pattern a bit by added thicker ties. I just believe aprons should have big bows! Here are a couple of closer up pictures (plus if you click on them they'll get bigger as well).

I also made a set of coasters for her with some purple fall pumpkin fabric I had. I forgot to take pictures of them before I tied them together with the purple rick rack though... oh well.  :(

and of course lavender for the back...  :)

I really enjoyed making the apron and coasters for Donna. Swaps are so fun and I love making new friends!

Today I signed up for a new swap...

It's a "Christmas Fabric Charm Swap". Read all about it here. I will be receiving 112, 5" x 5" charm squares of Christmas fabric. I can't wait! All I have to do is cut 56 charms from two different Christmas fabrics. I can't wait to pick them out! First I have to check out the swap's flickr group to see what everyone else is using so I won't duplicate any.

Have a Great Week!

Until next time...
Cherise  :)

Friday, September 23, 2011

Fall has arrived!!!

You wouldn't think so by the weather here in southern California though. It's been in the 80's & 90's all week. I really don't care for the heat. I prefer 70's or below.  :)  Cooler weather please come soon!

Fall has arrived... on the calendar and at my front door!

I participated in an fall (or Halloween) apron swap through Country Pleasures. My swap partner is Donna from Texas. She's a sweetheart with a wonderful blog. The package actually arrived Wednesday but this is the first time I've been able to sit down and write about it. Luckily I remember to grab my camera when it arrived. :)  

I was so excited! I opened the box and the first thing I found was a pumpkin! It was so light and SO COOL!

Here's a close-up of the top. Did you see the rolled up fabric for the stem? It's so cleaver!  :)

And now for the main part... Don't you just love the polka dots?!!! I do! And the PINK tulle ribbon! I love PINK!!!!  :)  I almost hated to open it... almost...

But wait! There's a card! Isn't it beautiful?!!! I love it and the colors! It's so gorgeous I might just have to frame it. The note was sweet!  :)

Enough already... on to the main attraction... I tore open the beautiful paper and found a gorgeous fall apron! I love the scalloped bottom!

Did you see the pocket? Don't you just love the fall leaf button attached?! Such detail!  :)

But wait... there's more! It's reversible! Yes two sides! Just like having two aprons in one! I'm a lucky girl!!! :)  More gorgeous fabric!

And another cute button on the pocket! This time it's a bee! 

Thank you so much Donna for the wonderful apron and pumpkin! I love them! It's so heart-warming to know that someone took the time to sit down and make something just for me! I love swaps! I love how they bring people together and the gifts aren't too bad either!  ;)

Donna... your apron is going out today! You should have it soon! I forgot to take a sneak peek picture before I packed it up. :(  I can't wait for her and everyone else to see it. I love the way it turned out!

I also have a mug rug swap that's going out to Angela today too! Sneak peek...

I can't wait to show that one to you either. I guess next week will be the big reveal of both of them.  :)

Have a Wondrous Weekend!

Until next time...
Cherise  :)

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

I finished it!

I actually sat down and finished the apron for my swap buddy today. I really like how it turned out! I hope she does too! I would love to show it to you but can't until after she sees it first... it's only fair.  :)  She emailed me this morning and told me mine's on it's way. I can't wait to see what she made for me! We were to do either a fall or Halloween apron. I told her to surprise me. I wonder what she decided on.... hummmmm?  Guess I'll have to be patient and wait until it gets here.

I've been told by many people that I'm a very patient person. I really don't think I am. I guess I can be very patient in certain situations.... in others I'm very impatient. I consider myself to be both patient and impatient all at the same time (if that's even possible!). :)

Since I can't show you the apron I completed I'll show you a runner I made before I started blogging. It's pretty simple...

I love pink! Can you tell? I really fell in love with the cherry fabric and the rest developed from there. This was only the second quilting project I worked on. Here's a little bit of the back...

Tomorrow I'll be working on some extras for two swaps I need to mail out this week. I'd love to start sewing the aprons I'm making for myself too, but that would probably be wishful thinking. I have a lot of stamp auctions on Ebay that end tomorrow so I will be quite busy with those. 

Thanks so much to all of you who leave me comments and follow me! It really brightens my day!  :)

Until next time...
Cherise  :) 

Monday, September 19, 2011

A Surprise Gift...

A few days ago I received a surprise gift from a new blog buddy, Karen from sewmuch2luv. Actually I knew she was sending me something, as she had asked me for my address, and told me she wanted to send me something. I was so surprised and happy! I was even more surprised when I got my gift. Such a nice presentation!

Here's the card and the gift! A dumpling bag and a vintage handkerchief! I love them! She knew I liked red and made this bag just for me. She actually showed the bag she made on her blog along with a beautiful apron she made & designed and I didn't have a clue. I don't know if she knew I also like americana (the card was perfect too!) 

I layed the items out to take more pictures and didn't realize what I did until later when I was editing them. Do you see it in the picture below? It's a mushroom! Karen, I bet you didn't know you sent me a mushroom, did you? Lol!  :)

Here's a better picture of the bag... I love red & polka dots!

And the inside... don't you just love that fabric too?!!! I'll have to figure out something really special to use it for.... huummmmm....

Thanks Karen so much for your kindness and sharing your talents with me! I feel honored! You made my week!

By the way... I just finished watching the season opener of "Two and a Half Men". Did you watch it? What did you think? I think they did a great job with it. At this point I think the show will continue to be successful. I don't want to give anything away in case someone dvr'ed it and hasn't watched it yet. My favorite part was the guest couple that used to have their own show. I loved it!

I did get some sewing done today. I'm almost finished with the apron for my swap buddy. Hopefully I'll finish it tomorrow... if all goes well.

Until next time...
Cherise  :)