About Me

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As a Martha Pullen licensed sewing teacher I love to learn new sewing techniques and I equally enjoy teaching sewing techniques to others.  You can also find me teaching Bernina Customer Courses at my local Bernina dealer.  In addition, I demonstrate Stampin' Up products.  I am a servant of the Lord of Lords and King of Kings, wife of one, mom of two, and grandma of five.  Welcome to my sewing and crafting studio!

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Garden Stake Banner

Here's a new little banner to hang on my hall tree.

The pattern is from Nancy Halvorsen's book, Garden Song.  I followed the pattern instructions exactly, except I omitted the side border strips and used the red fabric as binding instead.  Why did I do this, you ask?  Because I wasn't paying attention and I quilted the little block together before I added the border strips.  Oops!  Oh well, it still turned out cute and I have it hanging in my living room as a reminder that Spring really will arrive in a few weeks (or months).

When I finished the block, hung it up, and stood back and looked at it, I noticed that the flowers (particularly the top yellow flower) blended into the background and the banner looked a bit blah.  My awesome daughter suggested adding stamen to the middle of the flowers.  I was too lazy to add any more sewing to this little project, so enter my Silhouette die cut machine.  I cut the "stamen" shapes with my Silhouette and applied the iron-on rhinestones to bling my flowers.  I also used Tim Holtz Distress Stickles to outline the leaves on the top flower (the color I used was Shabby Shutters).  Much better!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

New Tablecloth, No Pattern Used

I've been in search of a new tablecloth for a couple of years now.  I never realized finding an oval tablecloth (in anything other than a solid polyester, blah!) would be so difficult.  Am I the only one on the planet who owns an oval table?  And are oval table owners only worthy of ugly tablecloths???  This is when sewing skills prove priceless . . . if fabric manufacturers would see fit to produce fabric wider than 54" for the home sewing market!!!  That said, here is my newly sewn tablecloth, and I LOVE it.

My table, without the leaf, is 42" wide and 60" long.  Therefore, the sides are slightly shorter than I would have liked them to be, but all in all I'm very satisfied with the result.  The fabric I used is Rural Jardin by French General for Moda.  It is a linen/cotton blend and is 54" wide.  I ordered 2 1/2 yards from one of my favorite fabric stores http://www.fatquartershop.com/ .
Here's how I made it:  I started by prewashing my fabric, ironing it, and laying it out on the floor to mark my sewing lines. 


I then took an old tablecloth purchased a number of years ago and placed it over the top of my fabric so I could "draw" my sewing lines.  Before layering in this fashion I did mark the center of my fabric and the center of my existing tablecloth by folding each in fourths and using a pin to mark the center.  Then I matched and pinned the centers when I layered them.  It then looked like this: (See how the fabric is not quite as wide as it really should be?  Oh well, it can't be helped.



I simply traced around the tablecloth with a washable fabric marker.  I did not leave much of a seam allowance (only about 1/4") because I knew I would finish the edges on my serger with a rolled hem.  My tracing lines looked like this:



There was no need to even cut around my traced lines because the serger does all that for me.  I just took it to my machine and stitched away.  

Here is a close-up of the rolled hem:




Some time ago I made a table runner using the same line of fabric (100% quilting fabric, no linen) and it looks great on top of my table with my new tablecloth.






Friday, February 18, 2011

Life's a Little Saucy!

This week I was busy with Community Bible Study, running errands, walking my Basset, and cleaning house.  It was my goal to spend some quality time sewing, but alas, it was not to be.  But that is not to say that I did not accomplish other important and enjoyable endeavors.  Here is one of them.  It is my homemade meat sauce for the traditional lasagna dinner that I make for my loving husband every February.  He has been out of town for business most of the month, but we will celebrate his birthday (belated) next Thursday evening after he returns from California.  In the mean time, I prepared the homemade lasagna sauce this afternoon and I will store it in the refrigerator until I need it next week.  Makes for quite pretty jars don't you agree?


Since the sauce will be stored in the refrigerator for a short period of time, I chose not to "can" the sauce.  Instead, I simply sealed it with my Foodsaver.  IMO, this is a must-have appliance for the kitchen!
 




Here are the jars of sauce, ready to enjoy next week.


Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day

Here are some sweet gifts from my sweet DH who happens to be out of town on this sweet day.  Whatta guy!  I Love you DH.  The cute little stuffed dog brings to mind a said Basset who lives with us.  Same coloring and the heart horns are quite befitting.


Crochet Moss Rose


This crochet pattern is from ammee's idea book #4, Crochet Candy - Embellishments & More.  I love the patterns in this book.  This is what the flower looked like when I finished crocheting it.  Most of the flower patterns in this book are shown with a button in the center, so. . .

I added the black button from my stash.  I sewed it on using the same yarn (Manos cotton stria, color #205) and a size 16 tapestry needle.  I will add this to a baby shower gift that I will be making shortly.  Here it is with the fabric I intend to use for that gift.  More on that later.


Is that not just too cute?!



Saturday, February 12, 2011

Saturday Baking

I like to try the cookie of the month from the last page of Martha Stewart Living magazine.  I received the March issue in mail last Wednesday and couldn't wait to try these new cookies.

Zucchini Nut Bread Cookies


These are a yummy, soft sandwich cookie.  A moist zucchini nut bread cookie filled with a cream cheese and butter mixture.

I made the little container with my Silhouette die cut machine and the label is a clip art download from MarthaStewart.com  I made three of these as gifts for our friends, Len and Sharon, our neighbors, Lauren and Jeremy, and our daughter and son-in-law and family.  Share the love!!

Friday, February 11, 2011

I *Heart* Birthday Cards

I crocheted these little mini hearts and didn't know what to do with them, so they became bowties on my antique candle holders!
The crochet pattern is from a blog I stumbled upon, but I'm sorry I forgot to note whose blog it was.



And my final Friday endeavor, a birthday card for my friend, Junko.


The black cardstock is Gina K Pure Luxury base weight, the white cardstock is Gina K Pure Luxury layering weight.
The printed papers are from Anna Griffin and the flower stamp is from Gina K Designs Buds and Vases.  The sentiment
is from a Close to My Heart stamp set and the die cuts are Nestabilities.


Thursday, February 10, 2011

Quilting Catch Up

It's been a very long time since I posted anything, so here are a few quilting endeavors from the past few months. Yes, I have actually accomplished a lot more, but alas, I dropped the ball and did not photograph them before giving them as gifts. So here are three for now.




Grandbaby #4 Quilt

A sweet quilt for my sweet Shirley, born last June


This was a kit purchased from a magazine a couple of years ago. It uses machine embroidery applique for the quilt squares and Minkee fabric for the pastel colored borders. The light colored background is a subtle print of 100% cotton.


Away in a Manger Wallhanging

This was a kit purchased from Fat Quarter Shop.  Don't you just love kits?

Close up of baby Jesus, don't you love his sparkly halo?  (Gold Fabric Glitter Paint)


Some of the quilting from the back side
 Last, but not least, Christmas Tree Throw



Back of the quilt to show some of the quilting (I'm still learning!)