Friday, December 31, 2010

Ciao 2010!

I started this blogging adventure on November 15th and I only wish that I had started sooner! 2010 was an amazing year! I planned a wedding, got married, moved into a new apartment with Hubby, went to Aruba, bought a car (yesterday), and crafted a little bit. 

2010 Stats:

1) Bucket list STARTED with 70 items
2) I completed 3 items from the bucket list since I started blogging
3) I am beginning 2011 with a list of 99 items
4) I have made 27 posts (including this one)
5) I have received 29 post comments
6) I have received 898 hits (not including mine!)
7) I have viewers in 10 different countries (US, Italy, Germany, Russia, UK, Canada, Czech Republic, Botswana, Norway, Australia).
8) I won one giveaway
9) I created 1 tutorial

2011 Wishes:

1) Craft Craft Craft
2) Knock quite a few items off the bucket list! 
3) Get really good at taking pictures
4) Hopefully have more than 50 comments or I will cry
5) Open up my Etsy shop! 
6) Sell items at a craft fair

Wishing everyone a happy and healthy new year!

Cheers to 2011!


Wednesday, December 29, 2010

A borrowed present

I have been researching new cameras A LOT lately. I am not entirely happy with my photos and know that I can do better. I don't know much about photography. I haven't used a real camera and developed film since high school photo class and am pretty confident that I don't know how to do anything anymore. 

With that said, I would hate to invest in a DSLR and get too overwhelmed and then not use it. It turns out that Chris (husband) had an SLR at home and I brought it back with me after our holiday visit.

I am excited to play around with it and take some photos! I barely remember what it's like to take pictures with FILM. I don't even know where to buy film. We'll see how this goes!


Tuesday, December 28, 2010

All I want for Christmas is . . . .

umm, everything? 

Not really everything. I gave Hubby free range to get my anything/everything from Anna Maria Horner's shop. Guess what he gave me?

FOLKSY FLANNELS! He gifted me the Folksy Flannels Collection which consists of 16 fat quarters of the loveliest flannel fabrics I have ever seen:

INNOCENT CRUSH VOILE COLLECTION. This is the most magnificent feeling fabric I have ever felt in my life. I mean, it FEELS LIKE BUTTA:

CRUSH COTTON COLLECTION. This is the MOST BEAUTIFUL quilting cotton on Earth. I am for sure convinced of that:




I am so excited to get started on projects! Did everyone else get amazing gifts too?


Monday, December 27, 2010

Have I told you...

that I have the best inlaws ever? This is probably the first of many posts boasting about how lucky I am. Sorry, I just can't help it.

My father-in-law or "FIL" built us the best Christmas gift ever! We live in an apartment with pretty limited space. See what he built to help us out:

It holds all of our spices with room to spare!! My mother-in-law "MIL" made the cork board for the front part of the cabinet years ago as a hobby. The past few times they've come to visit they've noticed the huge blank space on the wall and likely heard me complain about the lack of space in the kitchen. What a fantastic solution!

I hope that everyone is as lucky as me!


Friday, December 24, 2010

I love Christmas

This Christmas brings along a few new traditions. I have a HUSBAND. We have to share things, like holidays. I am looking forward to it. 

I We will spend my our holidays doing the following:
  • Driving from Albany, NY to Watertown, NY then to Granby, CT, then to NY, NY, then back to Albany, NY (from the 23rd to the 26th, boo)
  • Seeing my brother and my sister
  • Watching Home Alone and Christmas Vacation
  • Eating until we have to take our pants off
  • Playing cards with family
  • HOPEFULLY getting lots of fabric stacks
  • Drinking champagne
Merry Christmas everyone, drive safe and enjoy!! 

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

The votes are in!

Blogland has voted and the next series of projects I am working on is......

drumroll ....

drumroll ...

Little girl dresses! Yay! I am so excited to start something new. However, I do have to finish a few things first:

1) The 16 mug rugs that I have ready to be bound in my dining room, that I haven't blogged about yet because they are gifts for a certain group of people that read my blog frequently.
2) The Figgy Rail Fence quilt started back here.
3) A Christmas stocking for myself (woops)

So I have to finished all of those items hopefully before New Years, so I have about a week to whip up a few dresses!


OH - hopefully I will have some fabric added to my stash after present opening on Christmas!!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Kona Cotton at Joann's?

I don't think so.

I was at Joann's getting a few solid prints to finish up some mug rugs and what did I see in their solids section? A whole entire section of various colors called "Kona Cotton Solids". I immediately checked the label on the bolt of fabric and of course "Robert Kaufman" appears nowhere on the label. They are also 6.99/yard! That's more than real Kona Cotton costs at my local fabric shop.

Is that allowed? I am pretty sure that Kona Cotton isn't a type of fabric like, for example, Cotton Velveteen. I know that Robert Kaufman has Kona trademarked. Tula Pink went through a huge ordeal with Wal-mart a while back and had to get lawyers and a ton of people involved. 

I am not sure what the rules are, but at 6.99/yard for a SOLID, there is no way I am buying it when I can get the real Kona cheaper and support my local fabric shop.

Has anyone else discovered this too? 


Wednesday, December 15, 2010

A finished Christmas Stocking!

I finished a Christmas Stocking and I am oh so satisfied!

In my last post, I showed you this finished stocking front:

Well. I am not ENTIRELY happy with it. Notice some dark brown spots on the nice white fabric? Well, it turns out I was burning my fabric! Ogghhh. I was SOOO bummed because I loved working on that stocking and it took soooo long to do because I am slowwww. Some of the hourglass blocks look OK, but there are 3 or 4 that just look bad I haven't yet decided if I can get over it enough to finish the stocking. So in the meantime, I started another stocking last night. 

Before I started the stocking though, I picked up some Kona Cotton from my LFS, Flying Geese:

  (Left: Kona Snow, Right: Kona White)

Then, the stocking making began (again). I started with a new template than the stocking from my last post. I wasn't entirely impressed with the shape of the previous stocking template, so I traced a neighbors stocking from Target and I absolutely love the shape and size:

Then, I cut out some wintery fabrics (same used in last stocking attempt):

I played around with the layout a little bit and finally settled on this one. I decided against the Kona Snow solids I already cut. I think the squares are just too big (4x4) to use an entire white-ish patch:

Then I did some sewing:

More progress photos:

(All pieced together)

 (Using the template to cut out the stocking)

(Made a quilt sandwich and quilted the front of the stocking using a crosshatch pattern)

 (Left to right: Stocking back, lining (2 pieces already sew together, stocking front)

(Sewing the stocking BACK to the stocking FRONT, right sides together. Note that the lining isn't involved in this)

 (The stocking!)

(Shoving the lining down in there. Next time I would definitely tack the lining to the inside of the stocking)
  (Sewed up a little something so it actually hangs from the wall. Almost forgot about it, woops)

And then ...

And then ...

(A finished stocking!!! YAY. What a hideous orange wall though. Let's just say that there wall was there when I moved in. It was painted to cover up someone's head going through it)

(Stocking back)

I am SO excited. I am pretty sure that the orange background doesn't do the stocking much justice. I plan on making many many more. As of right now, guess what? Another item off the BUCKET LIST! 
Things I would do differently:
- Use a smaller scale overall pattern. The 4x4inch blocks were just to big and I didn't get to see as much fabric change as I would have liked too. I guess I would like a stocking more like the one I BURNT in my last post. Woops. 
- Use a little white in the fabric front. I didn't use it intentionally because it looked a little weird on such a big scale, but next time I will.
- Tack the lining to the inside of the stocking so it doesn't move around. I would actually make the lining a little smaller than the stocking too, so it fits in better. 
- Figure out a different cuff. I totally forgot to take pictures of the cuff process because it was so hectic and I messed up a few times.

Overall, I sat and stared at the thing for hours on end figuring out what my next move was going to be. Now that I am totally satisfied with my process and overall result, I think I can whip up new stockings pretty quick!

Check out my Finished Projects Flickr album for more finished projects.

Now I am off to wrap Christmas presents and hopefully finish another stocking by this weekend (so hubby and I each have one).


Sunday, December 12, 2010

Hourglass Christmas Stocking (Progress)

I have been working on the first Christmas stocking and I have determined something.... I am SLOW.

I followed an hourglass block tutorial found on Rita's blog over @ Red Pepper Quilts.
The tutorial was VERY easy to follow. It was my first time piecing hourglass blocks and it was fun!

First, I cut up some of the fabrics from my last post into 3.5 inch squares:

Then, I also cut 3.5 inch squares out of white fabric and started following the tutorial:

 (Getting ready to sew the hourglass blocks together)

 (Getting ready to iron)

 (All pressed)

And that is the progress made so far! It took WAY longer than I thought it would. The most time consuming part was the pressing and then squaring up all 30 of these little blocks to about 2.5 inch squares. That took FOREVER. 

Hopefully I will have a completed stocking tomorrow.