Wednesday, April 29, 2009


so I suppose I am overdue for a blog update. not much to report in crafting news. I haven't been feeling like sewing much lately. I would say it was because I am distracted by the spring weather, but the three inches of snow from Monday suggest that's not a good excuse.

I have been doing a little embroidery for a future baby quilt. I was bummed to realize a few blocks in that the transfers are not equally sized. so while a five inch block works for A-E, the whale for W is eight inches long or something ridiculous like that. I don't know what I'll do with that as I go through the alphabet and the blocks get progressively bigger. I'll probably end up cropping rather than some more elaborate process of manually shrinking the pattern and redrawing it. a bummer to have not realized earlier that it was such a poorly designed pattern.

A is for alligator

B is for bunny

C is for chick

D is for dog

E is for elephant

my big recent news was from my parents, who notified me via e-mail that I had been selected as Favorite Child of the Year.* It's very exciting. My prize package arrived via priority mail - a quilt mag, some chocolate, and this:

gnome jenny and gnome dad

Gnome Jenny and Gnome Dad. I'm keeping it in my living room, since my dad keeps the gnome I got him next to his living room recliner.

* Western Division

Monday, April 20, 2009

fabric and muffins

I have been buying fabric at a brisker pace than I have been using it, but I couldn't resist this fabric when I saw it on Etsy.

elephant teacher and animal students in reproduction fabric

It's crazy adorable and I think the colors are fantastic. I would never think to put those colors together, maybe the blue and mustard but not the pink - but it's a really appealing combination. It's not vintage, but reproduction - probably from a few years ago. The selvedge says Darlene Zimmerman for Chanteclaire.

I also some lemon raspberry muffins, using more of the giant sugar sprinkles.
lemon raspberry muffin

Friday, April 17, 2009

Favorite quilt

It seems like everyone in my blogroll today is participating in an online quilt festival, so I thought maybe I would also go ahead and post my favorite quilt for show and tell.

So I think that my panda quilt is probably my favorite. I don't have a great story associated with or anything, but it's probably my most original quilt that I've designed and I like how it turned out.

front of quilt

My second favorite quilt is this one. I like the embroidery, and the satisfaction of finishing a difficult quilt (all those awkward diagonal seam intersections!).

ABCs and 123s baby block quilt with embroidered squares

Part of me wants to go pageant-style and nominate a couple other quilts for lesser titles, like "Favorite Use of Color" or "Most Visually Appealing" but I'll stop there...

Thursday, April 16, 2009

another pear pincushion

I made a pear pincushion for my aunt. It looks a lot like my last one, but I think the stem is nicer - I made a little felt sleeve for it instead of using the pipe cleaner alone.

another pear pincushion

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

cookie time

I bought large sugar sprinkles over the weekend and got the idea on the way home from work that I should make molasses cookies rolled in the sugar sprinkles.

My mom was kind enough to scan the family recipe and e-mail it to me. I wanted them to look just like the ones that my grandma used to make - which I remembered as big, flat, perfectly round, dark, evenly sugar-coated cookies with two raisins in the center. they didn't really end up looking anything like that, but they are pretty tasty (and I don't really like molasses cookies all that much).

molasses cookie with golden raisins

also, if you haven't already, you should watch this clip from Britain's Got Talent.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Easter basket

so methinks the Easter Bunny has been reading my blog, as look what I found in my Easter package next to my pile of candy:

adorable fabrics from Japan!

food packaging fabric

my favorite thing about this one is the cute critters mixed in with the matryoshka (my mom reports that she actually searched on the phrase "critters" when fabric shopping)
Matryoshka fabric with critters!

new bunny fabric

Thanks, Mom and Dad!

Friday, April 10, 2009

banana blackberry muffins

So as I mentioned in the last post, I think I am moving away from cupcakes. My aunt suggested bread-making, and I was totally thinking the same thing. So consider this a transition effort - muffins.

Most of my cupcake books have a muffin section, which makes sense but is also a bit weird. This recipe came from Cupcakes from the Cake Doctor, which has very reliable and simple recipes. unlike most in the book, this recipe is from scratch - banana blackberry muffins.

banana blackberry muffin

I never really thought much of blackberries until a few weeks ago, when a friend ordered banana blackberry waffles at breakfast and let me steal a bite - and it was tasty. conveniently blackberries were on a good sale at the grocery store today too. I doubled the banana and the blackberries in the recipe, and they could still use more blackberries, but very tasty nonetheless.

plus a good evening distraction given that I have taken my new candy crane game to the office:
my new crane game

thanks to Andrea for the present! It is awesome, even if I have yet to win any candy from it.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

lemon orange cupcakes

I thought I'd take a moment away from being bored to death by American Idol to post the cupcakes I made.

lemon cupcakes with mandarin oranges and lemon cream cheese frosting

Lemon cake with mandarin oranges and a lemon cream cheese frosting. I think I'm getting a little bored with cupcakes. Might need to come up with something new to make.

Monday, April 06, 2009

The Prisoner

AMC is producing a new mini-series of The Prisoner, and you can now find the 1960s version of The Prisoner to watch online on their website.

It's quite bizarre, somewhat addictive, and generally awesome. The premise is that a spy tries to retire, only to wake up trapped in The Village, a controlled state (in the form of a resort town) where escape is prevented by menacing weather balloons.

best fabric ever

a while back, Kim asked on the True Up blog about favorite fabrics. I didn't necessarily have one in mind as a favorite, though I do like this one a lot.

I might have a new favorite fabric though:
best fabric ever

I nabbed it online. It's vintage, of course. It was a little pricey, but one of those impulse buys I knew I would regret if I didn't go for it. lately, I've found myself drawn to Victorian house themes. I tried for this crewel kit on ebay (and lost) and bid on this Marushka print on ebay (ended too rich for my blood). So it appears it was just a matter of time before I found something to fill this taste for Victorian houses. I love the color combination too.

The selvage says it's from the Greenbrook collection of related fabrics and wallpapers. It would be sweet to wallpaper a room with this. or if I had yards, I would love it as curtains. I don't have a project in mind for it (yet) but I might consider just stretching it on a frame to hang as is.

go team!

the UNC quilt is out as the panda and I celebrate the victorious Tarheels!

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

a baby quilt

I decided to throw together a baby quilt at short notice for a friend to give to a friend (why go into the stash of a half dozen baby quilts, after all?) (Note to self: two evenings is an aggressive timetable for me to make a quilt, even a baby quilt.)

I decided to do something Denyse Schmidt style, wonky log cabin blocks in a color scheme of orange, teal, pine green, and lime green. the colors are inspired by the backing fabric, a stripe from the Prints Charming line I picked up at a good discount from equilter a while back. they have in-person pick-up so it's nice to save a few bucks on shipping too.

Anyway, here it is:
Denyse Schmidt style baby quilt

And the back.
back detail of baby quilt - orange, teal, lime green, pine green

It's not my favorite
(but they can't all be) - I am not convinced of the white background, or the dark green fabrics.

I do like the pieced binding - the first time I've made one. I had scraps of binding in several colors already, so I combined those with a few of the scraps from the front piecing and whipped together the binding probably as quickly as making a continuous binding in a single color.