Thursday, July 31, 2008

I've been exploring lots of fun crafting blogs out there and have come across some really great ones. I recently found a cool giveaway ('cause the coolest blogs have great giveaways!) that you can sign up for - here it is:

She's giving away a fabulous purse and some fabric as well, so go check it out!

Monday, July 28, 2008

Doll Quilt Swap 4 Progress

I haven't yet posted on the progress of my DQS4 quilt, so here it is. It's been an experiment. I haven't had much experience with appliqué, so I tried it out on this mini quilt. I also have had trouble in the past with binding a quilt, so as you can see, I have been avoiding that part.

I did the detail quilting so far on my machine, which was a painful learning curve. Some of the flower stitching is all wonky. I was also using some shiny embroidery-type thread that didn't always like to work in my machine.

I felt that this whole process was a good thing, however, 'cause it has given me more experience and confidence in both a) making an arty quilt, and b) finishing a quilt!

New Things Bloomin' in the Garden

Lots of new things are blooming. We have lots of daylillies that are finally making an appearance and I'm happy to report that they are a lovely shade of ORANGE! Hooray!

We also had a mystery weedy thing growing that I thought could be a purposefully planted flower. Turns out it's a pretty pink phlox.

Lots of my zinnias are now blooming, too. I have a mixed color pot, white, and green "envy" zinnias. So pretty! I love spending time in the garden nowadays looking at all the flowers and seeing the insects buzzing around.

Hooray for Summer!

Monday, July 14, 2008


I've been too busy lately to give some shout outs to my recent swap partners, Shari & Muriel, so here's the praise they deserve!

Shari in Michigan sent me the most fabulous apron I've ever seen as part of the Sassy Apron Swap. She must have seen that I love the color orange and I spend a lot of time in the garden because she included elements of both in the apron. It's a halter-style with a flirty ruffly bottom edge. The material is thicker than a typical quilting cotton, which she said was perfect for grilling out (which I will be using it for!). She also made and sent along a matching towel that has an attachment ring so I can link it onto just about anything!

The swap included a non-alcoholic drink recipe and she sent her childhood recipe for a yummy coke float. I have to say here, that I love the fact that it was specifically a COKE float as opposed to a soda float or one of those other subpar carbonated beverages. I'm from the south and spent a good deal of time in Georgia, so everything is a coke and only Cocacola will do! (yes, I'm a Coke snob).

The next swap in which I participated was from the Bend The Rules Sewing group and we selected placemats and napkins to swap. My partner, Muriel, sent me the cutest set of placemats with a garden-y theme to them. The napkins even had a hot pepper stenciled on them to match some of the fabric she used in the place mats. She lives in the Netherlands, so they traveled a long way to get to me. She also sent a recipe for chicken salad with melon. Sounds yummy!

I've had fun with these summer swaps. They allow me to see how other folks get creative with fabric which is inspiring to me. I've also been able to reconnect with an old friend that I've known since high school - Hi, Sarah! I have more swaps in progress now, so I'll post on those more later.

Yay, swapping! I love it!

I Love the Quilt Cottage!

While up north last week, I found a great little quilt shop called the Quilt Cottage. We were driving up Rt 51 towards Sayner, WI and we passed this shop. As we drove by with my face pressed to the glass of the window, my hubby actually suggested we go back the next day to visit. YAY, hubby!

The building itself is charming - a real log cabin-style. The first floor is crammed with fabrics and they had an extensive "civil war" area with repro vintage fabrics of all colors and patterns. I stayed in that area for a while! There was also a large wool section, a batik section, and a quilting cotton section.

Downstairs is the "bargain basement" with all the sale fabrics plus some cool antique furniture and quilts for sale.

The best part was the upstairs, though. There were three bedrooms, bathroom, kitchen, and large work space with irons and tables. They have classes in the workspace, but the store also rents out the space for quilting retreats. It was so nice! I could imagine myself there with other quilty ladies working on some fun projects and having a great "girls weekend". Anyone wanna go? :)

Of course I bought some great fabrics. I also got a few quilt project patterns on sale and they even gave me a cool reusable canvas tote bag to carry it all. So next time you're in Hazelhurst, Wisconsin....

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Back from Vacation!

Busy, Busy, Busy! Hubby & I just got back from the "Nortwoods" (yes, pronounced without the H!) of Wisconson. We stayed at a couple places up near Sayner & Boulder Junction, Wisconsin over the 4th holiday. We went with two of his friends, Scott & Bill, so it was just me and the guys! Here's the place near Boulder Jct. It was a nice 2 bedroom cottage on Trout Lake.
Hubby did lots of fishing while we were there. Doesn't he look like a pro? We did lots of cooking on the small portable gas grill. That little thing has come in quite handy this summer!
We did lots of fun stuff - hiking, shopping, eating, boating, and lots and lots of relaxing. I brought several books and finished three during the week. I also found a cute little quilt shop I'll have to blog about later. Now it's back to the usual routine back home. Ho Hum.