Thursday, October 27, 2011

Ready for Fall

We've been having such lovely, warm weather here in Oakland (did I mention we moved to Oakland?? More on that later...), that I haven't felt right about decorating for Fall.  Nevermind that these decorations have been up since early September :)  But now that it's cooling off and the leaves on the sycamore out front are changing colors and dropping to the ground, I feel justified. 

Bring on the Trick-or-Treaters!! 

How are you decorating for Fall?

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Crafty Niece

My niece, Malia, is growing up so fast!  And it warms my heart that she is becoming a very crafty girl.  I wish I could take credit, but my sister (her mom) is pretty creative herself!  Take this cutest little key holder, for instance:

Adorable, no? My sister orchestrated this activity for Malia's Campfire Girls troop's Father's Day gifts (yes, way back in June) and I think they turned out awesome!! Malia chose a bicycle because her dad is a big-time cyclist - smart girl.

I have made these in the past with colored (and non-colored) wire in the shape of a heart, star, or the Golden Gate Bridge, but I think the colored twine gives it a much bolder appearance.

Seriously people, you could hammer (pun intended) one of these out in less than an hour.  So easy, so cute, so functional.  Christmas ideas??

Thursday, August 04, 2011

Brooklyn Baby

The recipient of this quilt is getting a baby brother!  I simply cannot wait to meet him!!

So this quilt shall be called Brooklyn Baby (since they've recently moved from NYC). 

Orange binding and the 2D Zoo I'm in so love with as backing.

Aunt Sara and Uncle D love you already!  We can't wait to meet you in September!

p.s. I've been informed that the quilt has already been hijacked by big brother, Charlie, upon which to host stuffed animal tea parties.  This makes me immensely happy.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Max's Blankie

I've got one more baby blanket ready to go for my friend's baby, Max!

If Max is anything like his parents, he will go bananas for the orangeness of this blanket... I just know he will.  I love this 2-D zoo print, and have for a while.  I'm so glad I have an excuse to finally use it!

And my new favorite binding is the faux bois, any color will do.
The other babies are enjoying their quilts, and  I hope Max will too!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Muchos Pluses Completo

I've almost finished the top of my Plus (pronounced "ploos") Quilt . :)  And I loove it!  I still need to add borders, which means a potentially dangerous trip to Peapod.

Warning: blurry photo... but you get the idea. 

D said, "I hate to say it, but they're not symmetrical..." Oh, silly D... I think he was kind of kidding, maybe.

The sashing phase of this quilt was tedious, but not too miserable.  I finished it in an evening.  My favorite parts are the couple pieces of off-white linen I sneaked into the sashing.   See that little middle square?   Cute-a!

One day, I will show you the completed, non-blurry version of this quilt.  I hope that day is soon.  I may opt to professionally quilt this sucker.  I'm just not in the mood.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Accidental Gee's Bend-ish Quilt

Many moons ago, I started this quilt.  The intention was to make a queen-sized quilt.  But then I got bored and put it away (surprise!).  I picked it up again in efforts to minimize unfinished business before moving, and here's what happened!  I just love it!

I loved how I didn't use any rulers, or rules for that matter, and the lines are a bit squiggly.  I just snipped, stitched, and assembled.  Now it's a fun and easy crib-sized quilt.  I felt like such an original...

...But then I noticed this - sitting right above me on my inspiration board is the very inspiration (albeit subliminal)!

How funny is that?  I swear, I didn't even realize it was there!  Somewhere in the depths of my mind, I must have channeled the Gee's Bend quilters. Wait, what am I saying?? I can't believe I even dared to compare myself to them, because the women of Gee's Bend are waaaaaay more amazing than I'll ever be - true, hard core quilters - using what was available (jeans, mattress ticking, floursacks, old clothing) instead of us modern quilters who take perfectly good pieces of fabric and cut them up only to reassemble them!  So silly, we are....if you really think about it.  I suppose we quilt for art rather than necessity nowadays, but still...

This quilt still needs the perfect backing.  Ideas??  Maybe I'll wait until I have the right recipient in mind.  Can someone please make a baby? JK

Friday, July 22, 2011

I Went With Red

I went with 2 different reds, in fact, and I'm glad I did.  The Liberty of London just threw it all off.  I kept the orange, and although it looks a little rainbow-y, I think I really like it.

Now how to attach them all....

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Also, I Want to Make This... fact, I will probably try to replicate this room in the new house. D doesn't know this yet. 

D, I'm going to replicate this room in our new house.

Ok, now he knows.

It's good to have an inspiration though, right?  Then you're not blindly hoping things go together.  This way, you already know! However, the room in mind was newly painted a very nice (different) color, so I'll work with what we've got.  
{image from House Beautiful)

But isn't this quilt great?!  I am in love!

I can probably figure out this quilt pattern, but if someone already has a pattern for this, I would love it!   Anyone interested in a quilt-along? 

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Things ARE Happening Around Here

Well, I know I've been quiet in the posting department, but things are going on around here.  We're actually in the process of buying a house (!), so that's been consuming much of my time, energy, and adrenaline.

In anticipation of having to move (shoot me now!), I thought I would "consolidate" and start using up some of these fabrics.  Some old, some new. Also, it is very like me to embark on a big project when there are one meelion other more important, more pressing action items to tackle.

This is an (as usual) exceptional evening-time photo of what I've been working on (soon there will be good lighting at the new house!).  We'll have some guest beds to make, so I'm going to make this one a twin-size.  Inspired by this a-dor-a-ble quilt, it's mostly blues and greens, but I'm not sure about the orange on mine.  Maybe the orange will look better if I omit the Liberty of London (for Target) print. I need one more color - what do you color theorists out there suggest?  Would a little bit of red work?  Hmm....  I will sash it with white.

These crosses come together really quickly and require very little ruler action. The more un-straight (I refuse to use the word "wonky"... aw, crap. I just did!), the better.  Anyhow, hopefully you'll see a finished product before too long.

And do get back to me on those color recommendations!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Shirt Refashioning

I wish I had taken before photos of these, but I am hasty and I get too excited.  I've discovered knit ribbing!  I'm not very good at using it yet, but I decided to sacrifice a few shirts to practice with.  Please do not scrutinize, they are very un-Virgo with lots of flaws. Whatever - I'm learning.

This used to be a turtleneck.  I liked the stripiness of it, but couldn't justify wearing it when the weather was nice (which is has NOT been in like 2 years - boo, San Francisco!).  But anyway, here's how I refashioned it:

This was a rather boring, ill-fitting shirt I got at the GAP for like $5. I had to take in the sides because it was frumpy (schlumpadinka, as we say 'round these parts), but that was a long time ago.  Anyhow, still not loving it, I added this yellow ribbing.  Mucho mejor. The yellow is a bit too lemony for my taste, but really, you can't please me - if it's not too boring it's too exciting.  Though I am pleased with this shirt now and maybe now I'll wear it to places other than the gym.

And this old thing, well, I still wear it to work even though I had to cut the sleeves off (put a hole in it trying to pull up the sleeves).  It worked as a 3/4 length sleeve shirt, but since it was pretty much garbage anyhow, I experimented with some colored cuffs.  I think I just added a couple months to the life of this shirt.  Nevermind that the cuffs are about 1/2" difference in length (awesome me!).  And yes, I wear garbage to work.

And this, folks, is what I do with a surprise day off.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Look Familiar?

I have a pretty fabulous group of girlfriends.  Three of them decided to simultaneously get pregnant with boys.  Ok, maybe it was a coincidence, but they all had healthy, beautiful boys within the last 2 weeks!  Nothing like the birth of a baby to motivate you into finishing a gift for them!

Here's Baby Celio's quilt:

We didn't know the sex, so I tried to make something gender-neutral.  And luckily, the quilt matches his room perfectly! 


I used green faux bois for the binding and I love it!

He is such a beautiful, perfect, sweet little baby and he smells delicious! I can't wait to babysit!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Matchy Matchy

My sister, Monica,  is a little obsessed loves the Amy Butler Barcelona skirt.  I have made her several and she wears them all the time.  And they look totally great on her too!

She's stopped waiting for birthdays or Christmas to receive them as gifts, and now just supplies me with fabric any ol' time of year :) I'm cool with that! I had a little left over to make a Lazy Days skirt for Maile.

Monica kindly snapped this photo with her fancier-than-mine camera.  Would you look at that photo styling?  She's hired!

Kate, I'm pumping out skirts for you!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Miss Maile is Four!

My littlest niece, Maile, is getting so big!  She turned 4 today!  I can't even believe it.  She's having a rainbow party this weekend, so I had to make sure she was ready for the party in rainbow-wear.

I found this very appropriate rainbow fabric at Birch Fabrics, which is dangerously conveniently located on my way to San Luis Obispo.  

Kate is having her Summer Skirt Challenge, so this was perfect timing!  I used the Lazy Days skirt pattern, per the usual.  It's tried and true and fast as ever. 

I hope she loves it!  Happy Birthday, Miss Maile!  We love you!

Caution: Cuteness Overload

Oh my goodness, I am so mad!! 

Why? I am so mad that I can't take credit for the following adorablosity!  (but I will take credit for that new word, thank you)  Mud & Twig on Etsy is the genius behind this genius.

Check. These. Out.

Hand-sewn labels for your home-canned goodies!


Honey?! Get me a hive, STAT!

Pickles!? Too much cute!  Look at those things!

And this, right here, would be the reason I would spend all day in a steamy kitchen canning tomatoes.  Just so I could put this label atop.  But then I would be so in love that I simply couldn't part with or open them.  It might be a problem.

You probably won't believe this, but there are even more labels in her Etsy shop, like marshmallows, lemons, pears... I know, it's ridiculous. 

I think you need to buy these.  I think I need to buy them too.  Also, I need a drink, because that was way too cute for me.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Bikey Blankey

My good friend just had her first baby boy! His name is Freeman - isn't that such a great name??

Daddy is a big cyclist, so I simply had to include bicycles in the quilt!  I love how it turned out.  Sweet, simple, and wrinkly.  Nicey bicycles! 

I hope there will be many snuggles, cuddles, tummy-, nap-, and play-time, drool, and forts made with this blankie.  Welcome, Freeman!  I can't wait to meet you!

Saturday, June 04, 2011

You Make-a Me Blush

Kate is such an awesome friend.  We had a super-fun sewing play/sushi date the other day.  Well worth the drive to San Jose.  She is super-awesome for a lot of reasons, but one of them is that she takes great quality photos that you can keep forever and ever in your treasure box.  To me, they're priceless... even the ones where you're wearing a mustache and fake-smoking a cigarette.

Oh, my fruit salad profile photo is by Kate too!

Anyhow, she just started snapping while I was doin' my thang.  Of course, I took off my super-sexy quilting gloves for the occasion.  Check out the whole post here.

(photos by Kate)

Next time, Kate gets her photo taken behind the "wheel".

Thank you, Kate. You're la cosa!

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

A Game-Changer

My life is forever changed! (That was slightly dramatic, wasn't it?)  I just used this stuff for the first time, and I just basted 4 quilts in one evening!!  Granted, they were baby quilts, but whatever.   I can't believe how much time I wasted pinning!

Um, don't spray it while your quilt is directly on your carpet... I mean, not that I know (D, this has all been taken care of) and not that I would do it indoors because it's not very-well ventilated indoors, as everyone already knows.  Spray it over some extra batting that you'll end up spraying anyway down the road....outside or in the garage (should you have one).
In other exciting news:  Tomorrow I have a long-overdue sewing playdate with PeepThread's Katy! She'll be getting ready for the Etsy Craft Party she's hosting with The Cheddar Guppies.  Sounds too fun!!  I will probably just look around her place to see what ideas I can rip off...

Friday, May 06, 2011

I Heart Muji

Every time we go to New York to visit D's family, it's compulsory that we go into the city and visit Muji. I would liken it to a Japanese Crate & Barrel. Everything is so simple and sleek. D likes all the little boxes and the fact that everything is paper-bag brown. I like the clever-grasshopperness of their products, and all the fine-tipped pens.

One perceptive little Easter Bunny put these alphabet cookie cutters in my Easter basket, which I am in love with. That Easter Bunny, he always knows...

photo from Muji

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Turning 6!

My favorite (and only, but nevermind) nephew in the whole wide world is turning six! That requires, like, 2 hands to indicate your age! So old - I can't even believe it!

Look at this guy! Could you just eat him up?

He is kind and smart and funny and will do just about anything for Legos.... and he pretends to love me in order to play Angry Birds on my iPhone. He's just his own little self and I just think he's the greatest!

I bought this book for him when he was just a little baby. I'm so excited to finally give it to him! It will teach him all the really important "boy" things like how to tie knots, identify insects, make paper airplanes, and play chess. (Yay! for rad photos...ugh)

And bless his little heart, almost every time I see him, he's wearing his birthday shirts. So, of course I made him another!

And don't tell, but I used one of D's old flannel shirts he had in the Goodwill pile. I just thought it was so manly & perfect! Don't worry, you will see more projects made with this fabric...I'm thinkin' manly patchwork baby quilt?

Happy Birthday, Makaio!!

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Peep Yourself Some Pips

One of my besties, Kate, is giving away some cutie-patootie fabric that you probably should have. Hurry though, you only have one day left to enter the giveaway!!

Need some inspiration? She's got that covered.

And while you're at it, you should probably also peruse her bitchin' new blog, PeepThread. Not only is this girl talented, she's fun as hell and super smart - one clever grashopper. See why she's one of my besties??

All photos by Kate

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Love Me Some Lotta Labels

Remember when I went to Lotta Jansdotter's studio in Brooklyn last year? Well, while I was there I picked these little guys up. And I'm so glad I did! (p.s. I didn't realize these photos were quite this blurry on my iPhone - sorry!)

I use them to spruce up the simplest of packages. My favorite is brown postal wrap with baker's twine. And I use the large Avery Manila Shipping Tags (for everything, basically) and adhere the Lotta stickers. Often times, in lieu of a card, I write my message on the back.

Wedding shower:

Baby gift:

Birthday gift: