Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Viking Down

My Viking 180 - purchased when my mother was pregnant with me and passed on to me when I was in college.
She's hurt.  :(
I took her for a cleaning, got her back, sewed a set of curtains.  Another night sewed a couple seams on some Christmas presents, went to put Sam in bed, and came back to a burning smell and smoky sewing cave.

This appears to be the culprit.  That burned looking piece behind the power cord socket.
She's in the shop now - hopefully it's something simple that is easy to fix.  Eventually I'd like a new sewing machine with a bigger throat for quilting, but for now I want my old girl fixed and running again. 

My Brother is working overtime right now while the Viking is getting fixed up.  Fingers crossed I get some good news from the tech soon.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

The Insanity Begins . . . Now

It's that time of year again, where I go nuts and end up chained to the sewing machine until hours before Christmas Eve.  Here's a sampling of what's hanging out in the sewing cave:

 Completed reusable grocery bag . . . two down, five to go.
Blocks for MIL's quilt
Stack of diaper cuts waiting to be sewn together
(and Will needs these as soon as I can force myself to start on them!)
Fleece hoodie for Sam and Wiksten Tova top muslin for me
Plus: 3 doll dresses and another quilt that's a present.  
I'm a glutton for punishment.  But at least I get to look at pretty things like these while I sew.  
Maybe one day I'll even use one of those charm packs.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Great Granny Along

I've made a little time for sewing lately...not as much as I'd like but we'll get there.  There's lots of sewing to do before Christmas, so I'm getting started.

Fabrics chosen and cut

Rows pieced

One completed block.

29 more to go...

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Some Fun Sewing

I was cruising some quilting blogs and came across the Moda Size Matters blog hop.  I saw Camille's block at Simplify and thought it was awesome.

So I printed off the sheet, did s quick sketch on the back of her block within a block within a block version, and got to playing once the boys were down for the night.  Here is the result:

24" is a gigantic block.  But that means it uses some serious stash/scraps and makes a quick quilt.  For now, this one will stay on the design wall until I get the urge to make a few more.

Friday, September 20, 2013


Haven't worked on this one in a while...

 I measured and need about 20-25 more inches in length.  Not sure how many rows that makes.  Just a little hand stitching and TV after putting the kids to bed.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Will's Nursery

It's been a great while since I checked in.  Will is 4 months old, I'm back at work, the garden is finally coming in, and life is just hectic.  But we are trying to do some fun things this summer with Sam as a family, so that is fun too. 

I was home from work with Sam the other day, so I took a little time and photographed Will's nursery.  There is one more project I'd like to do for over his crib and the curtains still haven't been hemmed, but I figured I needed to get some pictures anyways.

This room is impossible to photograph with my regular lens, but I tried my best.  I didn't style much since I was doing this while at home with a sick kid (he's fine now).  It's a small room, but perfect for a nursery.  The walls are Analytical Gray by Sherwin Williams.  It is a perfect warm but not pink gray and works really well with the stained trim (bane of my existence).  For reference, here's my original mood board for the nursery.

I did get the stuffed puppy (it's made by Jellycat), and I sewed the quilt (in this post).  The rocker turned out different - I used my great grandma's glider but didn't get around to reupholstering it.  It works with the existing faux leather for now.

I love the gallery wall.  Love, love.  The top left picture is one I drew when I was 5 years old - my cousin found it and gave it to me for Christmas.   The frames are Ikea and Michaels and Target.  The clock was from Lowes.  The Fe canvas I made using a DIY image transfer method.  The footprint canvas is Will's one-month footprint.  The W is from Michaels - I painted it black and distressed.  The baskets on the changing table shelf are from Target, the bins on the bottom from TJMaxx - both are Curver brand.

The changing pad cover is one I made from large buffalo check fabric.  I tried to improvise, and it took me three tries to get it right.  I should have just followed the tutorials I read instead of trying to be cool and do it my own way.

Curtains I made from white linen-look fabric.  The curtain rods are EMT electrical conduit and wood craft finials I spray painted ORB.  The blinds are fruitwood ones from Home Depot, and the wall lamp is from Lowes.  Rug and ottoman are from Target.

 I had planned to do a large rustic map art over the crib, but I haven't finished it yet.  So for now the TJMaxx art hangs over the end of the crib.  I made the crib skirt and sheet.  The sheet is black and white hounds tooth; I also have one with cows on it.

I should have taken photos of the closet, but I was lazy.  I painted out all the shelving while I was pregnant and added baskets.  His clothes are so cute hanging on the tiny little hangers inside.  I didn't style the bookshelf - the top shelf is stuffed full of newborn cloth diapers he's outgrown.  One of these days I'll get a tote and put them in the storage room.

 This hook was a wedding present from some friends, and now it holds little ball caps in the little corner between the closet and window.  It's just a cute detail that makes me happy.

I'm pretty proud of this nursery; I feel like it's my best room yet.  There are things I'd like to tweak/add, but I pretty much did it all myself while I was pregnant with William, and I adore this room.  I think it is a good take on my original mood board, and if the boys ever need to share a room I think the decor from Will's room and Sam's room will blend really well with each other.

*Crib and changing table we had from when Sam was a baby - they are Delta Martine collection.  And the bookshelf is from Target.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

T-Shirt Diapers

My brother had a ton of clothes he was getting rid of . . . I dug through them and snagged a ton of shirts and such to re-purpose for the boys.

My first several t-shirt diapers:

Outer is a t-shirt or polo, except the brown on top which is a lightweight cotton sweater.  Inner is microfleece, and the middle is another layer of t-shirt with a sewn in microfiber soaker.  They are made from the Very Baby pattern and have additional snap in soakers.  Love them!

I'm having a hard time resisting all the awesome thrift store shirts that have been calling my name . . . but I have more of my brother's t-shirts already waiting . . .

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Garden Work

There was some straw and chaff left over from baling the barley, so we hauled it over to the garden and used it as a weed preventer.

Saturday morning . . . we had made a little progress during the week.  It had rained a bunch, and we needed to get the straw off the trailer so it didn't get hot and catch on fire.  I set up the playpen with a sheet over the top for Will.  Sam alternated between playing on his swing set and helping pull weeds/spread straw.
Sunday afternoon . . . complete. 
It hurt to blow-dry my hair,so I'd say it was a good workout.

I go back to work Thursday . . . I miss my coworkers but I'll miss my sweet baby more.  I like being a homemaker, and we have just found a bit of schedule these last couple weeks.  Oh well, the bills won't pay themselves.

Monday, May 20, 2013

A little something

Will is already outgrowing his newborn diapers, so I have started on bigger ones.  The plan is for mostly one-size pockets to use at daycare and around the house, but to also have several sized fitteds to use with diaper covers.
Over the course of a couple days in early May, I managed to get this one done.

I learned a lot from his newborn diapers - what patterns I liked, which fabric combos worked best, where to and not to apply snaps, my preferred method of inserting elastic, etc.
This diaper is a size small fitted diaper made from the Very Baby pattern.  It's a knit print on the outside, a middle layer of microfiber (microfiber auto toweling from Costco), and an inner layer of microfleece.  Plus a sewn in booster of microfiber and knit print, and a snap-in soaker of microfiber and microfleece.  I had to try it out as soon as I finished it.  Of course after I snapped pictures I put a cover on over it.
So cute!
And when I changed him later the microfleece was just damp in the front, so it seemed to do a good job with my heavy wetter.
Now onto the other 29 or so . . . eventually I'll get them all done.

Monday, May 13, 2013


I saw the Scrappy Trip Along way back at the beginning of the year and was very excited by it, so I became a joiner.  It took me longer to complete because I just worked on it here and there as I felt like it.
Last week it got sent to my sister-in-law for her birthday. 

The quilt is made entirely from my scraps/stash.  I didn't purchase anything new for it - not fabric, not batting, not thread.  I made sure to hammer that point home to my husband so he would know I am trying to use up some of my hoards of fabric (bought recently and long ago, inherited, etc.).  My goal for this year is to not buy fabric (unless it's charm packs of Fig Tree for my collection or diaper fabric or for a very specific reason), and I have done really well, only buying diaper fabric since before Will was born.  The  backing is from stash, and the binding is excess scraps from the backing after I finished the quilting.
I wasn't too sure of this concept as I made the blocks, because some of them were ugly, but I was determined to use fabric, cut strips off lots of fabrics in my stash, used from my scrap jar, and luckily at the end it looked pretty decent. 
I'll be making more versions of this quilt sometime - while I was cutting I went ahead and cut extras of each fabric, so I already have enough strips cut for a second quilt.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Will's Quilt

This quilt was actually finished months ago, but I never got around to photographing it.  It's a Carrie Nelson design featured in American Patchwork & Quilting (back in 2006 I believe).  It had been on my list for years.  It was actually very easy and quick to piece, and I LOVE it.
The quilt is 48"x48".

 Pieced back
Details of the quilting

It's getting lots of use for tummy time right now.
I think it's one of my favorites ever.  :-)

Friday, May 3, 2013

Reporting from Mommy Land

Hello.  Long time, no write.

I am getting close to halfway through maternity leave, and am finally feeling fairly normal (but still fat/dumpy, like a weakling from lack of activity, and sleep deprived).  Being a mom of two and a farm wife is hard.

Our second son William (Will) was born March 22 (41 weeks 3 days) via repeat c-section after 21 hours of labor with little progress (only 5 cm dilated).  So my VBAC dream did not come to fruition; however, I know I did all I could and was at peace with the decision.  And, the doctor said at 41 weeks I would not go into labor on my own, and I did, so there!

I have sewn some but not much lately.  I have pictures of a few things to show soon as I get a few minutes here and there.  Hopefully soon we'll get a schedule and I'll be able to work more sewing time in.  In the meantime, though, I'm going to focus my energy on this:

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Cloth Diapers

With my firstborn, I wanted to do cloth diapers but didn't have much support.  I purchased a few things - some covers in various sizes, a few contours, some pockets, and a couple all-in-ones, but didn't have enough to really use them full-time or even part-time. 

I checked with my sitter earlier in this pregnancy to see how she felt about cloth diapers, and she actually has two babies in cloth right now, so she was open.  Hooray!  And with a few more years of sewing experience under my belt, I feel much better about trying to sew some to use in combination with my small stash of purchased diapers.  I feel like I have better support this time around as well and am more comfortable dealing with naysayers. 

It's not so much that I want to be environmentally friendly as that I am cheap.  I think so far I've spent about $200 on my materials for cloth diapers (not including the tons of fabric I have in my stash that I bought back for the firstborn and never used for anything) and have made 22 diapers so far and still have tons of materials left for lots  more.  At roughly $30 a box and about a box a month for disposables, I'll break even before the baby hits a year old.  And our firstborn didn't potty train until 2.5 years old.  Plus, they are easy to make and so stinking cute!!!

Here's my first - using the Very Baby Fitted pattern (again, phone pics - pregnant lady is lazy). 
I have done mostly Very Baby's with some Cloth Revolutions in there to try something different.  So far I have made newborn sized diapers - my purchased pockets are all adjustable one-size but probably won't fit for a bit since this baby is supposed to be on the small side (bigger than his 4lb 7.5oz brother, but not 8lbs either).  I will get the NB sized diapers made, figure out which ones/fabrics work the best on baby, and then start on some one-size diapers to round out the stash for when baby is bigger. 

So far I have made: 15 pockets, 2 covers, and 5 fitteds, with three fitteds in the works and about 11 more fitteds planned.  The worst part is the cutting out - the sewing goes together fast!  My favorite thing is adding the elastic to the fitteds - I love the way the 3-step zigzag stitch ruffles the fabric!

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Baby's Quilt

Here are some progress pictures from Baby #2's quilt.  It's actually finished now, but I haven't gotten to take any beauty shots yet.  It was really quick to piece - I was a bit of a maniac. 

The pattern is Scrappy Stars by Carrie Nelson and was featured in the June 2006 issue of American Patchwork & Quilting (and yes, I've had the issue and the quilt on my list all this time). 

 Only picture of the completed quilt so far, and it doesn't show much.


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