Friday, January 7, 2011

6 Days in 2011

Wow this year is getting off to a fast start. Six days already passed? Well, I started New Years day with a swollen lymph node that felt like I was being stabbed in the neck from my ear to my collar bone. But I felt fine and figured if I just got out and got a little fresh air it would be OK. NOT! An evil virus crept up on me that night. I used Zycam and my secret arsenal of jalapenos and green chile to fight it off, but I ended up sleeping in my chair for 4 days anyway. So today I finally got back to feeling all motivated and New Yearsie (I just made that New Yearsie thing up. Not a real word, but I think you know what I mean.) And now I am ready to tackle some of my goals.

So who needs one of these?
I am not so good at math but I had 5 quilt kit orders to cut out yesterday and it amounted to something like this: 4 X 144 + 1 X 240 = and I guess it was somewhere around 750 squares I cut out.

I know that Accuquilt was doing all those GO! giveaways last year and I entered to win a few times. But this Accuquilt Studio cutter is really the thing I have been dreaming of and it has been on my New Years Resolutions for 3 years in a row. 

This year I took a different approach and decided that I would actually set a goal and save the money specifically for this. I started with a little bit of Christmas gift cash and then whatever comes in from my sales I am adding to the kitty instead of just spending it. GUESS WHAT??? I am almost halfway to my goal already!! And the amazing thing is that when I have that goal in mind I have a totally different attitude toward the cash I am carrying around. Like I have no desire to spend it. When I see something that I want and I know I have the money in my pocket I just mentally subtract it from my goal and then it is so easy to talk myself out of buying something I don't really need. Well this is probably not that amazing to people who know how to manage their money well. But that is not something I am good at so I am loving this new me! I am hoping for the end of February to reach my goal!

And I started my first ever in my lifetime diet today. Really, I have never done it before and it is a little strange and scary to me. My goal is to lose 15lbs. by March 15. Yeah, I can do that.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

A Moment of Truth About My Addiction

I. Have. Fabric. 
And I am going to be honest and admit that much of it is never going to see the light of my cutting table. Because, I move on, change direction and just lose focus on what I had in mind on a specific day that I decided that this fabric had to be mine. 

Did I mention that I am easily distracted. Or that I went to the laundry room tonight to put something away and spotted a pair of worn out Levi's on the table and went and got a pair of scissors and proceeded to cut out an apron for Sis, just because I had seen one on someone's blog tonight.

So I am going to be opening a little fabric shoppe corner on my Rainbow Creek  quilt kits site to try to find a new home for some of my most beloved pieces. I thought I would give you a sneak preview, just in case you are under-stashed and in need of something that I have been hiding away in the bat cave here.
FQ's Michael Miller Baby Goth and Dumb Dot in turquoise and espresso. I have 4 of each.

Really, these are THE Poker Dogs, from the Cassius Coolidge prints. My mother in law had a framed set hanging in the basement of her house, really. I have 2 1/2 yards.
Oops, this flannel Dale Jr. print never got made into a baby boy quilt before he changed his number to 88. Or something like that.  2+ yards.
One yard of the most adorable retro Michael Miller flannel, baby girls in rain slickers. So cute!
This deep red on cream children's toile is a soft shirting cotton. I still think it would make a gorgeous nursery set. 4 yards + two coordinating fabrics below. (And by the way, if you don't sew and would love a pretty vintage nursery set of this I do take custom orders still. I have enough for a crib set plus valances and maybe some basket liners and pillows or other accessories.)
Black and dark blue on cream shirting. 2 yards
Deep red on cream floral shirting. 3 yards
Black and red on cream shirting, 4 yards

Another MM retro flannel, Playpals. Only 1 yard.

Strange Kokopelli print for Museum of New Mexico, 2 yards.
Red and white Cowboy print, 2 yds.
MM, Tossed Geisha on pretty purple, 3 1/3 yards in two cuts.
MM Geisha Room Royal blue, 1 yard

Retro look "Our Family" at the beach, on a pretty turquoise, 2 yards
MM retro ladies "Spring Rain" on yellow, 1 yard only

Patty Reed Paper Dolls, on the prettiest blue. 1 yard only
MM Tossed Geisha Turquoise, 3 yards.
Marcus Brothers Playing in Spotzville, 2 yards
Tre Chic "packed pocketbooks" for Vintage Workshop, 1 yard +

Hula Hoop fun! MM retro on yellow, 1 yard only.
John Deere OOP tractors, yellow check background, 1 yard only.
Moda from Paris Cats cobalt blue colorway, 1 yard. Also have the light blue starburst, 2 yards.
Really nice Batik flower print in teal, 3 yards.
Classic Cottons feedsack reproduction, kittens with yarn, 34 inches.
MM Pink Baby Goth and Dumb Dot, 4 FQ's of each + 2 yards of each.
MM retro Boomerang and Car Hops, 2 FQ's of each.

So if you see anything you can picture for your next sewing project feel free to email or check out my store over the next few days for pricing. These will be going for about what I paid for them or a little less. Now how is it that I can't remember my own grandkids names half the time but I remember what I paid for a yard of flannel 4 years ago? Is there something seriously wrong with that or what? 

I am going to try to figure out how to install a Paypal button on my blog, but that might not happen for a while. I'll combine shipping or waive shipping fees on multiple orders too, just haven't worked out the details on that yet.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Low Tech Kid's Stuff - Fabric Checkers Game

 I was hoping to have this posted before Christmas, but being organizationally challenged as I am I barely made it to my own Christmas Eve party. That's because I was downstairs putting the finishing touches on a couple of sewing projects and wrapping gifts while the kids were waiting patiently rampaging through the house waiting to open presents.

So I came up with this idea for Destructo Boy because he likes to play checkers and I thought a travel checker set that he could throw into his backpack to play on the school bus would be fun. For some reason their bus has a "layover" every morning before the driver is allowed to drop the kids off, so the driver kind of encourages the kids to bring something to entertain themselves. All well and good, as long as it is not something that is going to end up in the principals office later in the day, huh?

So this was a "no cost" project that I made up from scraps I had around the house. It was really pretty easy and I wish I had remembered to take pics for a tutorial. But that might happen soon because I think I might make this again for the Twinkie's in a girly theme. I happened to have the sports themed fabrics and some pieces of felt, so that is what I used, but you could use just the felt for the pieces and paint or mark one side of each piece for the King side. So here are some basic instructions, I think you could follow without the pics.

I strip pieced the 64 1 1/2" squares together so that was nowhere near as hard as it looks. For a 12" checkerboard you will need two 2" X 44" strips of each color. (If you cut the strips 2 1/2" you will end up with a 16" square checkerboard) Cut the strips in half so you have 4 2"X22" strips and then stitch them together with a 1/4" seam alternating the colors. Iron the strips so that the seam allowance is pressed toward the darker color. This is important if you want your corners to match up nicely.  Then take the pressed piece and cut it into 2" slices, reverse every other strip so that you get a checkerboard pattern and stitch those together. Butt the seam allowances up tight against each other to get a nice corner. Steam press it all when you are done. I added a 1 1/2" border around the outside.
For the checker pieces I used the No Sew Ultra Heat Bond and ironed the fabric to red and tan felt, then cut out the footballs and basketballs. I made a little felt pouch with a velcro closure for each set of 12 pieces. I ironed a football and basketball to the outside of the pouches just because.
I cut a backing piece from coordinating fabric and stitched a felt tic-tac-toe board on the center. You can use bias tape to make the lines or cut strips of fabric like I did. I put the backing and the checkerboard right sides together and stitched around, leaving an opening for turning, then topstitched all the way around, closing the opening.
Then I folded it into 3rds each direction with the game piece pouches inside and put a little strap with velcro to hold it all together. I stitched one end of the strap to the center of one outside edge to keep it from getting lost.

Destructo Boy had to practice up with Mr. Rainbow Creek and Nature Girl before he goes back to school tomorrow. Not sure who won, but they were laughing and having a great time. Take that Xbox!

I am joining these linky parties:

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Year 2011!

Whew! I made it to the finish line again. That is how I always feel when the holidays are all wrapped up and I am just so ready to start the new year fresh.

As usual 2010 was not without a few stumbles, but overall I think I have a lot of accomplishments and a lot to look forward to in 2011. 

I have a few resolutions, which oddly enough are pretty much the same resolutions I had in 2010 and 2009 and 2008. Practice makes perfect??? Well not so much in my case. But here we go again!

1. Blog (more.)

2. Create (more.)

3. Sell (more.)

Pretty simple. I have projects, tutorials and lots more in store for next week. For now I am just focused on this one thing... getting to Monday morning and seeing that school bus show up at the corner. Yeah, it has been a long 2 weeks.

Have a great weekend! See you soon!
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