Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Wishful Wednesday - 9/28/11

Please note: I am only wishing for rain if I can have homemade tomato soup and grilled cheese.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Ongoing projects!

I didn't want to bombard you with all my sewing projects, so I thought I would split everything up into two posts :)

Sunday I spent the majority of the day texting Ari, author of my new favorite blog (go follow her blog now!), and working on sewing projects. I had a lot of fabric to cut so I followed two very important cutting rules: don't use a rotary cutter while on the phone and don't cut fabric while drinking multiple glasses of wine.

I drank this instead, it's my new favorite soda!

Some of the squares I was cutting were huge, so I had to get creative with my rulers.

The squares were then cut down into triangles. The fabric pictured above is called batik fabric. I have never been crazy about it, but I think this one will look good with my quilt.

Then I made my own piping for the dress I have been claiming to work on, but haven't really been working on. What I did was cut strips of fabric on the bias (when cut at this angle the fabric is a little more stretchy) and sew the pieces together to form one long continuous strip. I then placed a 5/8 cord along the strip of fabric on the wrong side, pinned it closed, and sewed as close to the cord as possible. Ta-duh, custom piping that will match my dress perfectly!

Monday, September 26, 2011

Weekend fun and productivity

I walked the Heart Walk this past Saturday and raised $304.00! My team raised close to $4,000.00! I saw cute corgi dogs there too. One jumped all over me and got my hoodie dirty, but I got over it. My sister thinks that corgis look like sleeping bags. I want to get one and name it Frank.

After that I met with my friend Smitty to catch up and go over some design work I am doing for her. She is one of those people that I think I could talk to forever. I wish I had more friends that quilted and sewed.

My friend Samantha recently inspired me with the amazing headboard she made herself. I had been thinking about making one for our bedroom, but have held back because I am so indecisive about the color. You see, I have been wanting to make a 1930's inspired quilt for my bed and I wanted the headboard to work with the quilt color wise. I just got over it and decided to buy what I wanted and worry about the quilt later.

This is the fabric I chose. I bought two yards at $10.00 each, but had a 50% off coupon. Cool!

The finished product and pillowcases are completed by my cat Stella trying to model. Nothing on my bed really matches, so the headboard doesn't look as amazing as it should. Once I have my quilt finished, and it's looking like I won't start on that until 2012, I will post a photo of my "new" room.

Oh, if any of you are considering following Samantha's tutorial I highly recommend getting someone to help with the staple gun and holding the fabric. Or maybe I am just not skilled with that type of thing.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

I love good deals.

I had been dying to buy the retro Butterick sewing patterns, but have held off because of the prices. Yesterday I went to JoAnn's and they were on sale for $1.00 each. Hell yeah, I bought all four.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Vintage Photo Friday - Cark Gable

This is my all time favorite picture of Clark Gable. It seems fitting that since I posted a photo of Carole Lombard with dogs that Clark needed his own dog post too!

If you are interested in learning more about Carole Lombard and her life, please check out this site. It is the most informative blog I have came across regarding Carole.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

An official quilt block

I have thirteen of these blocks at home! Surprisingly (again) I managed to have most of the pieces line up correctly, although it's hard to tell because I didn't press before taking the photo. Next I need to do some more cutting. Ugh. At least I have a new blade for my rotary cutter. Next up is cutting a bunch of large triangles and border pieces. Finally it feels like progress is being made!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

My current entertainments

TV's fall lineup is here and I am especially excited about several new television shows. It's sick that I'm so excited, but honestly after a long day of work sometimes there is nothing better than curling up on the couch and watching TV with Luke and the cats.

I am very excited about Pan Am starting. I love the era and I love Christina Ricci. It can't disappoint, it won't.

This aired on Monday night, but I got around to watching it last night with Luke. The critics have been saying that it reminds them of a cross between Mad Men and the Godfather. Since I am the only person in the world that has not seen the Godfather, I would have to say that it reminds me of a mix between Mad Men and The Sopranos. And that's a good thing.

I LOVE Sarah Michelle Gellar. I own every single season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and have watched each episode multiple times. When I heard that Sarah was going to be in a new show I was ecstatic. I have watched the first episode and it's looking pretty good so far. Tonight I will be drinking some wine and watching episode two.

This is not a TV show, it's the new book I'm starting today. It has amazing reviews and I have heard nothing but good things from the people I know that have read it. When I worked at the bank there was an 87 year old gentleman that was constantly reading. He told me that this book was one of his favorite all time books. He knows his books, so I was sold on reading it as soon as he told me.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Gifts and one less item on my to do list

What's the best way to make a quick gift for someone and cross something off my to do list? Why, it's making makeup bags out of oilcloth! I used the extra oilcloth I had from this project to make myself and my friend Cali a makeup bag. My husband Luke and I were going to her house for dinner and I wanted to bring a gift for her. Since I am obsessed with that oilcloth and I thought she would like it, I made this before we went to her house:

 Here is what I love: I love making things for people that actually appreciate them, and Cali fits into that category. She was so grateful and I could tell that she genuinely appreciated the time, effort, thoughtfulness, and energy that went into making the makeup bag. She even wrote on my Facebook wall to let me know that she loved it. Do any of you ever come across people that aren't very thankful when you make them a gift?

Now Cali and I are twins with our matching makeup bags.

I need to make a makeup bag. I hate mine. Doesn't it feel good to cross things off your to do lists?

Monday, September 19, 2011

Jessi's Bridal Shower

On Sunday my "AG mom", Vanessa, threw her future daughter in law, Jessi, a bridal shower. Jessi is getting married to Curtis (my hair stylist and good friend) in a few weeks and I couldn't be more excited. Curtis and Jessi are amazing together and compliment each other perfectly. I have been friends with Curtis for over seven years now and I can honestly say that I have never seen him this happy or in love! 

 Jessi is classy, courteous, and an all around good person. I am so excited for the wedding and their new life together. Oh, and of course I will post some pictures from their wedding, the wedding of the year! :)

Thursday, September 15, 2011

A much needed sewing machine cover

Friends, I have something to confess: I have been sewing for the past year and a half without a cover to put on my sewing machine when it is not in use. I know, I'm probably going to hell ;) Yesterday I had enough and decided to buy some oilcloth, even though I swore I wouldn't buy any fabric for myself until I had crossed more projects off my to do list. I justified it by deciding that if I was going to make the purchase then I had to make the cover THAT NIGHT to avoiding having another pending project on the back of my mind.

Someone didn't want me to sew, he wanted attention instead! Or maybe he was drawn to the oilcloth I was using to make the cover.

When Lebron realized he wasn't going to get attention while I was sewing at the machine he decided to pout on the other desk and supervise from afar.

 The finished product and the rest of my sewing area.

 A front view. I am very happy with how it turned out. I loved the oilcloth print, I had been eyeing it for a while now. Luckily there is a good amount left over for another project I want to make...

It's hard to tell from the photos, but I used a black bias tape to finish the raw edges. I even made (and finished the edges!) for a space for the machine cords.

All in all I am very pleased with the outcome. It took less than an hour, why did I procrastinate on making this for so long? At least there won't be any cat hair in the machine, which is more than I can say for the rest of the house.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Visiting a friend and more quilting

Yesterday I went to Shannon's new place to hang out for a bit and to chit chat. She surprised me with this book! How sweet is she? I have been a fan of her embroidery (go to her blog and check it out)  since I have seen her work posted online. It was so nice to meet such a friendly and talented person! Embroidery is something that I am interested in learning someday, I just need to find the time and patience...

She also gave me this adorable fabric. The little white dogs look like Rerun, my former coworker's dog.

When I got home I worked on my quilt for a bit. I was pleasantly surprised to see that some of the blocks are done correctly, in that the points all match up where they should. Cool!

52 seems to be the magic number for this quilt. I am close to putting together all the little blocks to make big blocks, but now I am debating whether I should work on my quilt or my dress for the Colette sewalong that I haven't started on. Decisions, decisions.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Flowers from my mom and Ronnie

My mom is so sweet! She came to visit me at my shop with her friend Ronnie. They hung out for a while and then went to a nursery and surprised me with these plants for outside of our business. The plants are so pretty and really spruce up the front of the shop. I put them out yesterday and have had so many compliments already! Thank you, mom!

 Ronnie gave me a recipe for chicken adobo. I had never made it before, but I made it this weekend for Luke. He said it was good, but I wouldn't know since I don't eat meat. I did eat the soybean corn sesame salad though! Luke said that it was one of his favorite meals that I have made him.

1 cut up chicken (into parts)  I like to use thighs only
olive or other oil
garlic powder
minced garlic if desired
3-5 bay leaves
1/4 cup vinegar
3/4 cup soy sauce
approx. 1/2 to 1 cup chicken broth
Generously sprinkle garlic powder onto chicken.  Brown in oil in pan that will eventually hold all the chicken.  Do not cook through at this point.  Do not crowd chicken. Place chicken aside.  SLIGHTLY cook minced garlic and bay leaves.  Replace all the chicken.  Pour in vinegar, soy sauce and chicken broth.  Bring to boil then turn heat down to simmer for about 30 - 40 minutes or so, until chicken is done. 

I started reading this book on Saturday. Who doesn't love Lucille Ball?

Monday, September 12, 2011

Cross one off the list

Remember my list? Well, I get to cross another item off, and I like it!
Green shirt from a vintage pattern. It's all cut out, just waiting to be sewn. I think I am making excuses not to work on it because it has an invisible zipper and I am kind of scared of it.

I bought this pattern on Ebay a while ago.
The reason that it took me so long to make is because I was procrastinating on putting in an invisible zipper. And it turned out to be no big deal, so I stressed for nothing! 

The finished product.

A close up.

I learned a lot from making this shirt. I had never used an invisible zipper and I had never used bias tape. From the outside the bias tape looks good, but the inside is another story. Oh well, live and learn, right?

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Books - Crazy Love

I am in the middle of reading Crazy Love by Leslie Morgan Steiner and I can't put the book down. It is a fascinating memoir about Leslie's marriage to a man that was verbally and physically abusive. In the beginning of the book she says something that I think is important: "Then maybe the next time you came across a woman in an abusive relationship, instead of asking why anyone stays with a man who beats her, you'd have the empathy and courage to help her on her way."

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Labor Day Weekend

I hope all of my friends had a nice Labor Day weekend, I know I sure did! It was a whirlwind of friends, but luckily Luke and I got to relax all day yesterday. Well, he relaxed while I cursed at my sewing machine.

In the afternoon I went to see my friend Curtis for a haircut and color. He dyed most of my hair black, bleached a few pieces, and then dyed the bleached pieces gray. I was overdue for a trim as well, so now my hair feels so healthy.

In the evening I got to see my godson Bronson. Yes, I have a godson and he's so cute!

Luke was busy working out with 1 lb weights while I visited with Bronson.

My new friend Samantha invited me to go wine tasting mid afternoon. It was so much fun getting to know her while drinking Laetitia's sparkling in the sunshine. We have decided that next time we go we need to bring a picnic basket with cheese, crackers, chocolate, fruit, etc.

 How cute is she??

In the evening Luke and I went to my friend Ariana's house for a BBQ. We always have so much fun at her house! We ate amazing food and watched The Greatest Movie Ever Sold.

Lazy day for us and the cats.

 Lebron sleeps so cute!

He really sleeps like this! It looks like it is annoying Stella though.

 Lebron's favorite thing is being kissed on the head. If you are not kissing him on the head then he puts his head on your lips to remind you.

Hopefully I will have a finished sewing project to show you soon. That is, if I can put in a zipper correctly. Cross your fingers for me.