Monday, October 29

While I'm at it...

Since I just shared my pattern for the little dolls I used to make garlands (though they'd be cute just as a doll...or as an ornament), I thought I'd also share my templates for hearts and stars. They too would make great Christmas ornaments as well as garlands. Click here to download the patterns.


(By the way, I have plans to write up and share the pattern and instructions for house needlebooks soon!)

Sunday, October 28

Dolls galore

The twin Annies are finished. One is on my front door and the other will be on her way to her new home tomorrow.

I can't wait to get started on their Christmas outfits!

I just recently added some cutie little sock dolls to my etsy shop. They are so much fun to make!

Sock dolls

Speaking of fun to make... I drew up the pattern for the little 4.5" doll bodies (and clothing) that I used to make the doll garlands that I have in my etsy shop. Just click here to download the pattern as a pdf, which opens in adobe acrobat.

Hope ya had a great weekend!!

Wednesday, October 24

A sneak peek!


Two Annies, nearly finished. I'm working on their clothing and finishing touches (leg stripes, shoes) today.

One is for a trade. The other is for me. They are for hanging on the front door...a seasonal decoration. Their clothing will be removable so it can be changed for different seasons and holidays. Their first outfits will be Pilgrim-inspired.

And since they're twins I can easily make new outfits for the doll who will be living in Virginia. Her sister can try them all on to make sure they'll fit.

They're going to be angels for Christmas. :-)

My crafting time has felt limited, again, lately. I've been spending so much time in the kitchen. Of course, that feels *right* this time of year.


Bread. Bread. Bread. Lots of bread. I don't think I've bought a loaf of bread in over a month. I've been enjoying it so much that I may never buy bread again!


I've also been making a LOT of soups. And the other night I made this (successful) pizza experiment. It has a whole wheat crust with some flax meal added. The "sauce" is butternut squash, sundried tomatoes, and garlic. It's topped with sauteed onion, turnip greens, and mustard greens. And then there's (not enough, according to my children) mozzarella cheese.

Amazingly, no one complained. I thought for sure it looked too healthy. And too *different*. But they all loved it.

Saturday, October 20

Oh my stars!


I just finished this star garland. It's 6ft. long and each star is a little over 4 inches. This one is for a trade but I'll definitely be making another one of these for my home!

I'm working on finishing up some Annies (one for a trade, one for me!) this weekend. They're turning out really neat. I can't wait to finish them and show them to you!

Thursday, October 18

Answering some questions

I thought I'd answer some of questions left in yesterday's comments here since I was unable to reply via email.

Is it hand quilted?

Yes. I only hand quilt.

The first quilt I made (completed, that is. I had a couple of starts before that which are still unfinished) was a gift. I was pleased with the top and was worried about messing up the whole thing with machine quilting. I was afraid I'd end up with a mess of puckers all over the back. Since it wasn't that big, I decided to quilt by hand.

I had been reading Tonya's blog (Leah introduced me to it) and was inspired to try hand quilting without a hoop or frame. I tried it and was instantly hooked. My stitches were more even and smaller and I actually felt in control. And the speed! Oh the speed! I was five times faster without a hoop/frame.

My stitches aren't tiny. But they aren't huge either. I don't even try for tiny, I aim for even and consistent. If they were expertly tiny I wouldn't be able to see them. I like being able to see the stitches. And Tonya really opened my eyes to the fact that I can do whatever I like on my quilts. :-)

And I found that I really, really like the look of hand quilting. So I've never looked back. I hand quilt everything. And I have no desire to even try to get past my machine quilting fears.

Did you actually piece triangles or did you use the method where you sew squares together diagonally and then cut them apart into two triangles that are already sewn together?

I actually pieced triangles.

I've seen the method you're describing in books, but I've never tried it.

I did it the way I did because I had discovered that if you take a 3" square and slice it into 2 triangles, then sew them back into squares, you end up with (almost) a 2.5" square. And I like 2.5" squares. It's weird, but I do. I really like them. That size just seems "right" to me. And I knew I wanted to use 2.5" squares for the centers of the stars.

It did occur to me (after it was too late to turn back) that I could have used triangles for the center squares (2 pieced red triangles for each square) and then I would have had less problems with the triangles matching the squares. And I could have used a shortcut method. But it was too late. Maybe next time ;-)

Wednesday, October 17



Triangles are harder than squares. Much harder. But, I suppose, one never get good at piecing triangles unless they've first muddled through being stinky at piecing triangles.

I used lots of different fabrics to distract the eye from the not so perfectly matched points. Hopefully my evil plan worked as this is a gift.

This little quiltie is 23.5" square. I just need to stitch the back of the binding and quilt the outermost border.

I've got a couple other things in the works that will be finished soon!

Thursday, October 11

I know, I know...

I haven't blogged in almost a week. But I've been so productive.

First of all, the quilt is finished. It's 46.5" x 54". Machine pieced and hand quilted.

(If you don't remember, this was a group project. Some of my friends who I met through the Amitymama message board worked together with me to make it. It's for one of the children of a beautiful mama whose life was taken by lung cancer. All total there are 8 quilts being for each of her seven children and one for her volunteers from all over the country. The fabrics for all of the quilts were sent in by members of the message board to one mama who coordinated the whole thing.)

Secondly, my laundry is caught up. Totally. Caught up.

Third, I've been doing soooo much in the kitchen. Baking bread, making granola and a couple batches of apple butter (Although with far less sugar than the recipe called for. Batch #1 got 1.5 cups for a 5qt crock pot full of apples. Batch #2 has no added sugar and is plenty sweet.)

Most of that stuff was either eaten or frozen before a picture could be snapped. So I had to wait until I had something to show, right? Posting without pictures just isn't any fun.

The good news is I'm about to start several small projects: a mini quilt, 2 Annies, and a homespun star garland. So I'll have more fun pictures soon...very soon!

Friday, October 5

A "ta-da!" from this Rockin' Girl

I usually feel like I'm flying under the radar. So I can't tell ya how excited I am that Hunny Bunny singled me out as a "Rockin' Girl Blogger". I don't know how "Rockin'" I really am (my friends who tease me for my appreciation of Yanni's music would probably find me being described as such quite amusing!), but this is my very first blog-award-thingie (what ARE these things called?) so I'm very honored.

The crocheted granny-square baby blanket it finished. And it's already found its new home. A friend stopped by as I was finishing it. She just happens to be expecting a baby girl (her third child) and she didn't think the blanket is as unpretty as I do. And it really is quite soft. So I'm glad I finished the squares up as a blanket. It feels good to cross a UFO off the list.

Now to completely change the subject...

Will you do me a little favor, please? It'll just take a second, I promise.

Go to your blogger dashboard. Click "edit profile". See the third item down? Please check that box next to "Show my email".

This will make it so that when you leave comments on blogs, the blogger can respond to you via email.

I know, I know. Not everyone wants their email address "out there". That's fine. But it's so easy to set up an email address at or to use for things where you want to keep your main email address private.

If you aren't aware of how it works, when you leave a comment on a blog the blog's owner is sent an email containing your comment. This is how I read them. I don't go to my blog to read them.

I don't reply to every comment left, but I do answer all questions posed to me.

It is frustrating though to read the comment-email, type out a heartfelt reply, only to have the reply returned as undeliverable. If you check the "Show my email" box you will receive your replies.

So that's my psa for the day. :)

Wednesday, October 3

Chipping away at the UFO pile

I've been working on my "finish what you have" basket. I'm happy to say that I'm making progress!

I've been working on quilting this quilt. My friend, Gwen, had started the quilting but was having a hard time making progress with a 5 month old baby and a house in the middle of a remodeling project (imagine that?! LOL!). So I got it back and have been busily stitching on it.

It's hard to see the quilting on the front, so here's a picture of the back.

I've just got that little bit on the left to go and then I can bind it. What color binding would you suggest? I'm thinking either a kelly green or khaki/tan. I'd love ideas/opinions! I'm going shopping for binding fabric either tomorrow or Friday night.

I've also put my "intended for nothing" granny squares together. I'm in the midst of weaving in the loose ends. Then it needs some edging and it's done.

I'm not all that thrilled with it. I don't love all those colors together. I could have done a better job arranging them (that dark green at the bottom should be switched with the light green on the bottom corner, yes?). Not what I would have done if it were a project I had thought through from the beginning.

I just had an urge to make a few grannies when everything else started making them. I never really had a plan for them. Silly, yes?

But it is made with a really soft yarn. I have no idea what to do with it though. Anyone need a somewhat ugly, yet soft, baby blanket?

Isn't Mr. Squirrel cute!? I saw him yesterday (at Target) when I was out doing a bit of shopping. He had to come home with me!