Saturday, March 31, 2012

another finish

i'm on a roll! actually, this is a start and finish in three days. it could have taken a shorter amount of time, but tonnes of chores which i've been neglecting really needed to be done this week...

i saw this post by Canoe Ridge Creations (with which blog i've fallen in love!), and REALLY wanted one for myself. so i set to work. i'm not entirely in love with the final product though. :( i LOVE my idaho embroidery block, and the borders, but that brown fabric and the quilting is not right. it was the only solid i had which matched what i was going for, but it's of inferior quality. i could kill myself. that'll teach me for compromising fabric standards! but the more i look at it, the more i see ways i can improve, and i'm still glad i made it.

the scrappy borders are made from left over Hometown fabric i bought for my placemats. the bluish colour fits in with my new living room colour scheme, as does the brown - so i intended to hang it there. we'll see though, if i don't end up making an entirely new one that i'm more happy with!

the hubs and i lived in boise for two years, and recently bought a home just outside our capital. so the heart not only is placed at the capital, but also represents where we live. :) and i love that i could find my town in one of the scrappy blocks used in the border. idaho falls also has special meaning to us as that's where we were married. :D

i feel like i'm still in that creative place where i'm imitating others' work. i think i'm still skill building and just finding my true creativeness. i'm getting there! i'm gradually branching out and experimenting with my own ideas, and i'm excited to be able to create something new. some things, though, i just have to have when i see it. this is one of them.

Friday, March 30, 2012

finally finished

i FINALLY got round to finishing my placemats that i started last summer. ugh. i'm not usually that bad. anyway, all i've had to do for a while is get some binding and sew it on. i didn't have enough coordinating fabric to do it til now. truthfully, i haven't even looked at buying it til now. since it's spring break for me this week, i thought: no excuses! get it done!

it only really took me two days to get them completed, once i got into the mode...

and, of course, they look super scrumptious once washed and dried. :)

i wasn't a huge fan of the back until i washed em. i was wishing i used a red fabric, but now with the binding on, and red thread, i'm really liking them.

et voila! finished. i'm so happy they're off my "to do" pile. (excuse the GROSSNESS of my living room carpet! it's raining, so i couldn't go outside, and we have yet to replace the ugly brown carpet in our new house...)

it feels good to complete a project! it means i can start on a new one, right? :)

i also got a lovely surprise package today from my Wild Olive Stitch Swap partner. Woo!

Dana sent some lovely goodies to me. those Godiva chocolate strawberries almost didn't make it into the picture... i was sure to eat them up before my hubby got up from sleeping. who am i kidding?! he doesn't even like strawberries. i've just been chocolate deficient for a few days now.

this was her first hoop stitch - and she did awesome! great job, and thank you for the loveliness! :) i shall hang it with pride in my crafting room.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

if your name is Renee, DON'T READ THIS! :P

that was meant for my sister-in-law... she's about to have a baby any day now, and i've made a little something for her little tyke. i'm not sure if she even reads this blog that much, which is why i'm writing about it now. if i don't blog about my finishes when they happen, i'm likely to forget about it later. but first, i couldn't resist buying this yard of fabric when i saw it on etsy:

if you know me, i'm plane crazy (not to be confused with "plain crazy"! which arguably could be true as well...) i even studied at the University of Leeds for two years in their Aviation Technology program, and took flying lessons. long story short, without going into too much detail, i ran out of funding, and had to pursue my flying dreams via a different route. in any case, what would be more attractive to a fabric obsessed aviator? airplane fabric, of course! :) i'm conjuring up all kinds of things for this beauty.

also, i grabbed some of this when i found it on sale for only $3.50 for a half yard.

i thought it looked very cute, and might make a little girl very happy one day...

so onto my major finish for this week:

i found this tutorial on moda bake shop, and thought it would be the perfect baby quilt for my newest nephew. i had a bunch of charm squares left over from my investment purchase of Pure by Sweetwater. i LOVE these fabrics. i hope my sister-in-law and baby will enjoy it as much as i do! :)

i purchased some additional brown fabric from JoAnn to complete the border and word appliques. it fit so well with the charm squares.

i deviated from the tutorial a little and kept the lettering in the same font, and i moved them in toward the center some more. i quilted using a simple meandering design, with loops on the borders.

i love that one word sticks out at you when folded in quarters. you can see a peek at the backing fabric i used. after i had picked this out, i asked my mother-in-law what the colours would be for baby. she said baby blue, lime green and darker green. although i already started the top and had a feeling it wouldn't be 'the colours' i was surprised that i got fabric for the backing that would match. i think it all came together pretty well in the end. i really hope she likes it.

Friday, March 23, 2012

handbag winners

alright friendly followers... since there were only seven comments on my final days of giveaways post, and there are supposed to be six winners, i'm going to make all seven of you winners! each of you will receive a bag not unlike this:

i'm still in the process of making them, so please bear with me. i'll email each of you to get your addresses so i can mail them off as soon as i finish.

thanks for following and commenting! :)

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Embroidery Swap

one of my favourite bloggers had a new embroidery swap. i couldn't help myself - i signed up! it was hosted by Mollie of Wild Olive. she makes the cutest designs! i love that she'll stick a happy face on anything, and it looks a million times cuter!

anyway, here's what i made for my secret swapee:

i think it looks so soft and feminine... i really hope my swapee likes it! i'm excited to see what i get from my secret swapper. i can't remember what i wrote for my favourite things, but i'm sure i'm going to like it. i have a hard time not liking other people's crafts!

Monday, March 19, 2012

my newest acquisition

i was truly psyched to see the mailman today. he brought me this:

what a delightful little bundle this is. :) i got a 1/2 yard of 8 different fabrics from Riley Blake Fly a Kite. it's more scrumptious in real life!

these beautiful colours are just what my stash needed. such a delicious combination. i LOVE the little characters too. so cute!!

the girl on the swing reminds me of my little sisters...

the boy is super cute too. (yeah, i really should have ironed out those creases before i took pictures, but i was too excited!)

i had to get a close up of that lil doggie. aww. he should be called 'patch'. anyway, i digress...

i can't wait to make something completely stupendous with these sweet gems, but i'm not sure what yet. in any case, i see a lot of fussy cutting in my future...

i just started this one:

i got inspiration from Amy at Lots of Pink Here. i really liked the fussy cutting pattern by Kate Conklin, but i'm working mine out so that they will end up being square instead of losing an inch in the width. i'm OCD...

yup, i finally cut into that 1001 peeps bundle that i got. a whopping 1 yard of each fabric in the Dusk palette. i cut enough squares to make a full size quilt and was surprised with how much fabric was left over. that means more beautiful creations! :) and lots of pillows to match... i'm thinking one of these would work very well in this collection. i can't wait!

so, any suggestions with what i should do with these fabrics? i'm hooked on pinterest and flickr looking for ideas...

Sunday, March 18, 2012

until next year...

st patrick's day that is. it's been fun preparing, and doing a massive giveaway/freebie blog event. i hope you've enjoyed it. i've learned a lot on the way. thank you to all my generous participants for supplying some items to giveaway. and thank you followers for playing along.

before i announce some more winners, i thought i'd share my party spread with you. check this out!

under the foil is the potato bread, and hamburgers and hotdogs sit under the other. missing from the picture is a batch of lovely caramel shortbread (which was housed in the fridge), and some delicious sausage rolls (being kept warm in the oven). i also made a HUGE batch of my momma's irish stew which was sitting in a massive borrowed pot being warmed by two stove burner rings. yep two. :)

i used my SPD printables to dress up the cupcakes a little. they look so fun!

and i had my little leprechaun guy guard his pot of chocolate gold coins. he's so cute! and that brings me onto one of the giveaway announcements... he gets a new home and goes to:

woohoo! congrats ang. he's going to a great home.

and the winner of the Windy City Novelties $20 gift certificate is:

congrats Lee. we'll be in touch soon.

i hope you all have a wonderful weekend. stay tuned to my blog for more awesome tutorials coming up and a giveaway or two. ;)

Friday, March 16, 2012

final days of giveaways

hi everyone! sorry to have been AWOL the past few days. i got ill and that's never pretty, nor is it very productive. anyway, let's take care of some business...

let's announce some giveaway winners! mr random says the winner of the lucky pillow is:

yay! congratulations tammy! i'm so excited you get this pillow! :)

and the winner of the embroidery patterns sponsored by The Split Stitch is:

congratulations hueisei! you'll soon get an email from Sara with information on how to choose your prize.

more giveaways announced tomorrow! look around and enter them if you haven't already...

i had a lot of fun making my final freebie... i'm part of a fabric postcard swap group and we sign up to swap every so often, and of course i HAD to sign up for march's Lucky Green postcard swap. this is what i came up with for my swap partners:

i was inspired by some of my favourite bloggers/designers Sweetwater. they posted about some valentine crafts/kits here. i loved their postcard kits, and decided to design my own for St Patrick's Day.

so i've decided to let my fine readers share in my postcard joy. i printed these on printable fabric sheets before sewing them onto fabric. i used InnerFuse (double-sided stiff fusible interfacing) as the batting layer between the fabric layers, but pretty much any kind of batting may do.

again, if anyone has trouble saving the above jpg file, i have a pdf prepared to email! let me know.

in light of my recent backlog, i'm going to change my plans a little for the remaining six giveaways. instead of preparing separate posts for each day, i'm going to lump them into one... for this last giveaway, SIX people will win a prize. how about that? that way, i won't go crazy catching up with my schedule.

i recently sat down to make one of Keyka Lou's patterns, and loved how simple and fast it was. i made this little beauty for one of my sisters.

this is the Dewdrop Handbag, which unfortunately is no longer available for pattern download. i'm so glad i bought this one when i did. and that's what makes this giveaway so special! six winners will each receive one of these beautiful handbags! so, who's in?

leave a comment telling me your favourite accessory colour and that you follow my blog, and extra entries will be awarded for blogging/facebooking/twittering about the giveaway. final day for entries will be march 22, with winners announced the next day. good luck!

i think that about catches me up with giveaways. come back tomorrow for more giveaway announcements, and hopefully photos from my St Patrick's Day Party! have a great weekend folks!

Sunday, March 11, 2012

day nine and ten...

in an effort to get caught up with my giveaways, i'm going to combine two into one post.

have any of you knitters out there heard of Jean Greenhowe and her designs? they are too gorgeous!

you may have seen this guy in some of my past projects... i made him and entered him into the fair and he won a ribbon! :)

i also finished the Mr and Mrs Claus just in time for christmas. Jean has many books out in lots of different themes. she even has some free patterns on her website! seriously, after these, you'll be hooked! her patterns are so easy to understand, and the booklets are beautifully illustrated. i started making things from her patterns when i was about 12 years old and living in the UK, but i know they are still around and can be bought from American based retailers, and wholesale in Mexico and Australia.

one of my favourites of her patterns is from the Little Gift Dolls booklet.

they are so quick and easy, you could make one up in a weekend or two. last year, i wanted to knit up a st patrick's day themed doll. so i turned to the little gift dolls pattern. i used the pattern for the little groom:

and instead i used various green yarns to come up with my little irish leprechaun!

isn't he cute?! i love him! he's living happily on my mantle until SPD is over... then he'll go to one of my lucky readers! that's right, he's today's giveaway. :)

along with mr. leprechaun, i'm going to be giving away three skeins of yarn - one dark green, one lighter green, and one flesh coloured for you to make your own leprechaun guy.

so, that's two prizes.

i will hold two seperate drawings for these, and if you'd like to be entered, just comment below! you can enter for either prize, or both. i know not everyone would particularly like the yarn (but i know i would!)...

this giveaway will close on 17th march, with winners announced on 18th. good luck!

Saturday, March 10, 2012

day eight...

...when really it's day ten. that exam really threw me for a loop! sorry guys. i know i've got two days missing. i'll make it up before the 17th, though.

today's giveaway comes from Windy City Novelties, Inc. they are an online store for all your party supply needs. i just purchased some fun St Patrick's Day items from them...

they really have anything you could imagine, and more! from plates and cutlery and tablecloths, to banners, inflatables and theme party supplies. with their help, my house will be unmissable - is even that a word?! - and quite conspicuous this week!

WCN has been generous enough to offer a giveaway prize for my readers. how about a $20 gift card, eh?! that'll buy you some fun decorations or that memorable item everyone will enjoy.

how about a costume for your 60's party?

or inflatable microphones for your karaoke party?

one of my favourites are the inflatable coolers...

and don't forget your st patrick's day party pack!

lots of fun stuff to choose from! :)

here's what to do: proclaim to me that you're a follower, and you'll have an entry into my random draw. i'll give you an extra entry for telling me what your favourite item is from their website!

this giveaway will be open internationally too, since WCN ships overseas, but please remember that they will be shipping from the USA and appropriate shipping costs will be applied.

the close will be 16th march with the winner announced on St Patrick's Day!!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

day two giveaway winner!

let's see what the random number generator says...:

wow. how often does that happen!? lucky number one is:

Congratulations Kathrynn! you'll get this yumminess to make your Lucky banner, or whatever irish decoration you like. i'll email you shortly to get your info so i can mail out your prize.

day eight post may be a little late again. i have an exam tomorrow, so i've been a bit busy. serves me right for not planning ahead this time.

see you in a bit!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

day seven

first off: day two's giveaway ends tonight, so make sure you enter if you want a chance to win! :)

today, i'd like to share another wonderful blogger with you... Sara, of The Split Stitch, designs beautiful and fun embroidery patterns. last summer, she made a call for volunteer stitchers to stitch up some of her designs so she could sell her patterns in her shop. i hoped she'd pick me...

when she sent me her list of patterns to choose from, i had to pick the irish themed designs. perfect for st patrick's day! i stitched up almost every single one.

you can see more of Sara's designs and buy her patterns here. her blog has some cool tutorials and free patterns around too. i hope you'll go and explore her blog a little bit.

for today's giveaway, Sara is generously going to give the winner two free embroidery pattern sets from her shop! to enter, become/be a follwer here and leave a comment. extra entries for sharing the giveaway in various places... and an extra bonus entry for going to Sara's shop and telling me your favourite patterns. I'd love to know what you'd pick! giveaway closes at close of day 13th march and winner announced on 14th march. open internationally!

have fun, and happy crafting! :)