Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Studio Snapshot

Silk sari strips stitched over eco dyed habotai onto linen.
What an enjoyable commission piece to be working on through   
what is becoming a very long, hard winter. 
Lately, David Gray has been playing in the studio
and I thought you might like this video:
Be Mine.
Thought it was appropriate for February. 

I recently added a few bags to my shop.
Knitters love this bag style because it deceptively 
holds a whole sweater! 
Not limited to knitting,
it makes for a great purse or travel project bag.
Did you see all those pockets?
This is my favorite bag to sew, and with spring fabrics  
piled high in the studio, more are on their way.
Questions? Leave me a comment. :)

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

The Sugar Buzz Princess

I was honored to be a recent guest at my niece Breezy's Princess party. 
The kingdom was outfitted with sparkling crowns and gowns, 
glittering magic wands, pinks a-plenty, and a delicious
princess cake!

Look carefully at the above picture and you'll see Breezy's two finger
technique for the classic Frosting Swipe.
So much to learn from this skilled three year old.

Making gifts for Breezy is always a blast.
These were last year's gifts
and this is what I made for her this year:
Frankie the Bloodhound keeping careful watch over Princess Breezy's foot stool.
The entire time I was sewing I imagined her 
easily grasping the soft handle, slinging it over her shoulder and
toting the portable stool/table where ever she roamed. 
Well, that's exactly what she did! 
Mission accomplished. 

Here is Susan's fantastic, easy to follow tutorial on her blog, 
The only change I made was to use two bags of poly fill. 
In case you don't have a three year old handy, 
Susan recently posted her grown up version.
Happy sewing!

You know how you're either one of those people who 
always wins the prize, or you're just not? 
I quite often find myself in the "just not" category,
until this week when I received an exciting email from 
the lovely Christine over at!
"Vintage inspired sewing for the modern seamstress." 
Speaking of which, I can hardly wait to download 
her Emery dress and get sewing! I'm so happy to have been
introduced to her. I only wish I lived closer to take any
of her classes at Fancy Tiger in Denver.

Back to Christine's recent generous giveaway, 
which you can read about here,  
I won a three month embroidery sampler subscription
from the fabulously talented Rebecca Ringquist.
 Ever since Rebecca began her stitch sampler club
I've wanted to sign up. Eager to expand my stitch vocabulary, 
I can now dive in! Did I say Hooray?!!

Thank you Christine and Rebecca. 
The ripple effect of your friendship and your talents 
is far-reaching!
Keep up your inspiring work and contagious enthusiasm
for all things stitched.
Life is good!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Holy Comfort Food!

 That's right. 
Take a moment.
If you need a remedy to this bone chilling winter
bake up some of these piping hot, homemade
 soft & chewy pretzels!
 This recipe by Two Peas & Their Pod is the first I've tried 
and it received instant rave reviews at our house!
The instructions are easy to follow, easy to execute, 
and the steps move right along.
Before you know it, you've got beautifully browned, soul-warming, 
salty comfort that fits right in your hand, well, two hands if
you're a dipper. Speaking of which, I didn't make the dipping sauce, 
but the recipe included with these pretzels looked mouth-watering. 
Instead, we dipped into prepared honey mustard and plain mustard.
Both are highly recommended.

If you try making these soft pretzels (and dipping sauce) 
for someone who occupies a soft spot in your heart, 
or for the kids when they come in from the c-c-c-cold, 
or just because, let me know what you think!
Fellow Downton Abby fans, doesn't this silver tea strainer 
look like it came straight from Mr. Carson's silver cabinet?
When a very dear friend recently gifted this treasure to me, 
it was the first I had seen anything like it. 
Then, I saw Episode 8.  :)

Now, keep warm by cranking that oven and baking some pretzels!

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Beguiling Hexis

I confess to having a love affair with hexis.
It's been going on for a while.
A few years ago I found the courage to try these six-sided, 
paper-pieced beauties, and today I still find them 
charming and irresistible.
Some of their noteworthy qualities are that they're portable, 
definitely scrap-friendly, enticing with their design potential and
a direct link to our quilting foremothers. 
I think I've heard they reduce stress, too.... (broken link on Pinterest)
If you'd like to have a go at sewing hexis,
or want to brush up on your hexi know-how,
here are three well-done, brief blog tutorials showing
all you need to know to create your own stress-busting
hexi masterpieces

I like this tutorial from A Bee In My Bonnet's Lori Holt. 
With clear photos and easy-to-follow instructions,
she demonstrates the traditional piecing method.

I like this tutorial from Clare at Selfsewn 
for a clear visual on sewing hexis together.

I like this tutorial from Alex at Road Home Quilting
for easily learning how hexi templates are sized, 
as well as for joining options.

For more quilting eye candy and talented quilters, 
have a look at (and follow) my Quilted Heaven 
and Quilt Blocks Pinterest boards.

Thank you, Marjorie, for these gigantic yet delicate 
pink blooms spreading cheer throughout our home
as we endure many a cold, gray day.