Thursday, May 28, 2009

Giveaway Blog Greatness

Are you as addicted to going to all the blogs that are having giveaways as I am? I have wasted away too many hours looking a the awesome handmade goodies, and tantalizing supplies that people are offering. I will post a real blog soon, promise, but I think I need to go and enter a few more giveaways to try and win some of the awesome prizes.

Monday, May 25, 2009

For those family members who feel my girls are being neglected, because I am spending too much time quilting, I thought I would show them off in all their little girl sweetness,

and sillyness,

and playfulness.
Yes, they are healthy and fun to be with again.

Okay, on to the ever important announcement: I did it!
I cut into my favorite piece of fabric for this puzzle quilt. I love the look of the way the fabric touches itself and makes this diamond with the turquoise swirls. Even the feathers are fun when fussy cut and put together. Only one major problem. When I finished sewing it together, my seam allowances must have been wrong because the block ended up 1/2" to big! Aargh!
So I left my sewing room in a fit of rage and didn't even go back for a final picture of the block. I am really not sure what to do. I can't redo it, because I had to cut 16 of each fussy cut triangle and I don't have that much fabric left. I hate to just discard it, and I really don't want to rip it all out to resew it back together. I would love any suggestions.

The rest of my sewing time this week has been spent in front of the computer writing instructions for the newest pattern packet. Not very exciting from a picture perspective, but I am so jazzed I can't wait to release this new pattern. Ideally it looks like it will be ready to distribute late next month.

Have a great day,

Sunday, May 17, 2009

The Paris Cats

Do you ever have one of those weeks? Alyssa's stomach flu moved north and settled into her chest. Finally, on Thursday, we spent time outside playing tag, catching butterflies, basically just enjoying being outdoors. Even cleaning out the car was fun. That evening the girls and I enjoyed dinner a cheap Mexican restaurant with great food. We came home and within 15 minutes Alyssa is in hysterics with her ear hurting. So after a sleepless night for everyone the doctor confirmed that the cold that was finally "gone", had moved north again into her ear and she had an ear infection. Hallelujah with antibiotics, I think we have really truly finished with her being sick.

So are you the least bit curious with what I sewed in those odd minutes I wasn't busy? I completed another block in my Paula Nadelstern Puzzle Quilt... only 9 to go.

I really liked what was happening with some of the fabrics as I was fussy cutting them. I also like how the colors bend at the seam lines.

This week it is time to start the next block and really play with how the blocks blend together with the mirror image fabrics.

My biggest problem is not wanting to cut into my favorite fabric. I am afraid I will run out so I am way too stingy with it. I still have 3/4 of a yard that has nothing fussy cut out of it, so for my next block I am forcing myself to use it! Hopefully I will get over my phobia.

I also started a new stitchery BOM by Jenny of Elefantz. This is exactly the "look" I would love to have my girls bedroom be. Reality is that no matter how soft and elegant the room is the toys would still be all over the floor. I am still going to stitch these up though with the thought that one day (soon?) it may be time for a Shabby Chic room make-over and I will already have this finished to decorate the room.

Until last night that is all I had completed in 7 days. But last night just as the girls were getting ready for bed I left for a sleepover at my Mom's house. We had the awesome martinis, then I got to sew with her for 4 hours, sleep just a little bit, and then get up for another 10 hour marathon sewing session. It was so much fun! We are attending an applique retreat next month, and the goal is to finish three new pattern packets then, so we are busy getting everything sewn together and ready for the applique to be added. And although I am not ready to show pictures of these new patterns quite yet, I will show off what we made to carry all our stuff in!

Aren't they adorable?
We now have matching totes, applique tool cases, humbug bags and covers for our pressing mats.
The brooches on the front of the bags, are inherited from my Grandmothers collection of jewelry. And the shoe fabric on the outside of my mom's bag is perfect because my Grandma always collected shoe charms wherever she went.
After looking at our newest creations, I was teasing my mom that we should change our name from "Quilts with Flair" to "Paris Cat Quilts" from the fabric line. Although most of our patterns are centered around a Paris theme, I think the name stays.

Also, if you are in the Southern California area and want to take a class from mom and I the next one is in August for our Eiffel Tower Quilt. I would love to meet you


Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Mother's Day Reminisces

I wanted to show off the pictures of the gift I made for my mom for Mother's Day. Wanting a pink and black theme, I purchased 2 fat quarters of fabric, a needle threader, a bias tape maker, and the piece de' resistance, was an adorable little pincushion. I first saw them when Sandra at Pepperberry & Co. had a link on her website on Earth Day, and I just knew that I was going to make several as gifts.

They are made out of the top of a 2 liter bottle. Talk about turning your trash into a treasure. The pink and black one was for my mom, and the other was for Jason's stepmom. They both turned out great, and now I just have to finish one for me.

My Mother's Day weekend continued on Saturday at my mom's house. Each of us had a chore to do before going swimming in the afternoon. Mine was to make a "box-style" card. I was allowed to pick any paper I wanted, and then decorate the card. I loved this pink and green ladybug paper and had to use it. And when finished pull the little circle sticking out the side and a panel popsout to to continue to embellish and write on.

I am glad Friday night and Saturday were so wonderful because Sunday.... well, lets just say it stunk. Alyssa woke us up at an extremely early hour, I was allowed to sleep in so I missed the first few episodes of her throwing up. But there were plenty more to follow, and any thought of being pampered flew out the window as I spent the day mothering my youngest instead. Finally tonight I got to open the last of my Mother Day presents.

Jason got me a beautiful necklace and earrings, and the girls each picked out a little notebook. I don't know if you can see the cookbook I got, but it is full of family recipes and photos that my brother and sister-in-law put together. I feel truly blessed.


Monday, May 11, 2009

Pay it Forward

I have joined my first PIF. The concept of a PIF is when acts of kindness are performed without expecting anything in return and are passed on, trusting that the recipients will do the same and Pay It Forward, resulting in a never ending chain of kindness.

By signing on, my commitment is to make and send a gift to 3 friends who post a comment to this post requesting to join this exchange and who promise to Pay It Forward to 3 other persons, and so on.

At this time, I don’t know what my gifts will be, but I can promise you a gift made by me I will send to you within the next 6 months. By signing on, what YOU then have to do in return is to Pay It Forward by making the same announcement and commitment on YOUR blog.

If you comment sign up, please be sure there is a way I can contact you through your blog or email so I can get your contact info. I will randomly pick the 3 recipients on Friday May 15.

So who wants to play?


Saturday, May 9, 2009


To everyone who is visiting from the selvage blog welcome. It was exciting to wake up this morning ready to blog about everything I got done last night and see, that so many people had come to visit.

Last night felt like an early Mother's Day present. My DH took the girls out as soon as he got home from work to go shopping for a present for me. They chose to go to a Grand Ave in Escondido and stayed for all the fun of Friday night with "Cruisin' Grand" where tons of people come out to show off and see antique cars. I had 3 1/2 peaceful hours to sew! First, I finished the tulip hearts quilt. And I hate to admit it, but I really don't think I like it. The picture is blurry I know, but even in person, it doesn't help the layout. But, with some quick stippling it will be done and make a nice gift to someone. Most of the fun was in the challenge. The petals on the flowers are prairie points, and the leaves are pockets. I really just wanted to learn how to make it.

But I also finished my barn block/mini quilt. I love this one! I found the pattern on a trip to Canada last summer, while and the best quilt store in Canmore. Trust me if the exchange rate had been better I would have had to buy and extra suitcase to go home. I used left over pieces of fabric from "Sunday Brunch at Lake Louise" that already had fusible on the back of them. It looks perfect on the little frame.
Have a great weekend, and happy Mother's Day to all the moms.


Tuesday, May 5, 2009

My Works in Progress

I thought I would show you a picture of my design wall. I think that you learn so much about people by how they evolve, and this wall is no exception.

From the upper left, there are the 4 Bunny Hill BOMs the fifth was released this morning, so soon that one will make it onto the wall too. Below those are two little mini quilts that the girls made last November from scraps of fabric that had fusible web on the back. I still need to quilt them. Continuing down, are a series of three flowers that I saw at a quilt show, sketched a picture of and then had to figure out how they were made. Well I made them too big in my opinion so there they sit waiting for fancy setting triangles to make them look proportionally correct.

At the top of the center section is another little mini quilt (I have a 9 1/4" double-sided frame that I display them on). That one is waiting on just a hint more quilting and binding-max one hour of sewing left. The next two blocks are part of a Paula Nadelstern Puzzle Quilt. Unfortunately, I still only have those 2 of 12 blocks.

I took close-ups of the kalidescope blocks, they are also inspired by Paula Nadelstern. I love these, but haven't touched them in over 2 years. The symmetry and design process mesmerize me and I can't believe that I made them, but there they sit. I counted in the lower of the two blocks, and in one tiny wedge are over 40 pieces of fabric, multiply that by eight wedges, and I am not surprised that I never finished my desired 5 kalidescopes for the quilt top.

But all of that is going to change soon, I hope. My goal this month is to finish most of the things on my design wall plus a queen sized bed quilt that just needs borders put on it. Unfortunately, I also have numerous projects that are tucked away in bags, that haven't even made it onto the wall.

I hope that it will be a month of accomplishments. And to prove that I can finish something that I started, here is what I finished today. Or more appropriately today's refinishing project.
This is the top of the coffee table before. The finish was scratched, there were water rings all over it, and even a little few sharpie pen markings.

I took a picture of the front of the sideboard with one side of the panel refinished and the other side waiting to be done. The results were amazing on both projects, I tried to take a good All Done picture, but the flash kept bouncing off of the wood. I may have done a better job than I thought, it really shines now.

I am now off to finish something else,

Friday, May 1, 2009

May Flowers

Happy May Day!

It is time to dance around a may pole and rejoice that spring is officially here. Most of the garden has already been blooming, but a few areas are just now waking up. This first picture is of the apple blossoms on our Pink Lady tree. Then these beautiful white rose on a bush "JFK" named after the American president. And finally, since my photos are kinda monotone, here are huge bouquets of flowers from the local farmers market.

I am really looking forward to summer because I am hoping that I am going to win this adorable tote from It's a Wonderful.... How cute will I be down at the beach sunbathing in my size 4 (not) bikini, and sipping on marguaritas that I have cleverly hidden in the bag. Oh, I can just see myself. The reality check is that I never win ANYTHING. So here's to crossing my fingers and toes.