Sunday, June 30, 2013

Bye Bye Google Reader

I am sure you have heard this a million and one times around the blogging world, but google reader goes bye bye tomorrow July 1, 2013. Since I really do enjoy having you around to talk with, I thought I would take a moment to let you know all the ways you can still follow along.

First there is Feedly. It is the reader I have been enjoying. It is super simple to switch to because you can just sign in with your Google accounts and poof all your current blog subscriptions are there.

follow us in feedly

You can also follow along using bloglovin. This one takes a little more effort to switch all of your google reader subscription to. You have to first download your subscribitons and then import then. However, It is a pretty cool reader too. My favorite part of bloglovin is they send you an email everyday with the new blog posts from your subscriptions.  I keep going back and forth between bloglovin and feedly for my favorite.

Follow on Bloglovin

Of course you could always subscribe by Email, if you like that better.

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner

Or any other RSS feed reader too.

If you haven't picked another reader option for all of your favorite blogs make sure you take care of that today. I would have for you to open google reader tomorrow and realize that you are missing out on all your favorite blogs today.
post signature

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Shabby Apple Winner

Congratulations Carly R! You just won a $50 Shabby Apple Gift Card. I am posting this on Facebook and Emailing you. Please get back to me within 72 hours so I don't have to pick a new winner.

Dresses from Shabby Apple
post signature

Friday, June 28, 2013

Friday Finishes

I have two block finishes this Friday. The first block is from my embroidery 101 project. I have finished 7 of the 9 blocks. Of course I started this years ago... but no the less progress is progress.

embroidery 101 block 6 finished

The second block is for the Sunday Morning Quilt Bee on flickr. Both people this month requested high 5. I finished the one for the person who asked for low volume.

Sunday morning quilt bee June

I was hoping to have the other one finished before this post. I might finish it later tonight.  I do have it 1/2 way done, but I am a bit tried of being in room with a hot iron on. It is over 100 degrees outside right now and my AC is struggling to keep up.


BTW today is the last day to enter my giveaway for the $50 gift card to Shabby Apple dress shop.

post signature

Linking up to:
Finish it up FridayLink a finish Fridaycan I get a whoop whoop

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Back to Sewing

It is nice to be home and it is nice have some time at my sewing machine.

I finished 2 of the 4 bee blocks that are due this month.

Bee blocks June

Both of these are for Make it Modern: A Quilting Bee

Bee blocks June

I really like the colors each person choose this month. They were a lot of fun to play with.

That is it for work in progress for me. Not bad for just getting back from vacation.

If you haven't had a chance to enter my giveaway yet, there are only 2 days left to enter for a $50 dollar gift card to Shabby Apple vintage style dress shop .

post signature

Linking to:

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Post Vacation Blues and Pictures to share too!

Hells to the yes

Ok maybe not so much on the blues part... but this pile of laundry did not help me transition back to reality well. I spent a whole day doing laundry only to realize that I will still have more to do tomorrow.

Oh my laundry!! The not so fun part of travelling and I have already started two loads.

Since I am still thinking about our vacation and have been going through pictures today, I thought I would share a few pictures of our trip to Hawaii. Well at least the Maui portion of the trip, as I still haven't waded my way through the Kauai pictures yet.

Our first day, on the island, we went to see the sunrise from the top of Haleakala Cater in Haleakala National Park at the summit.

haleakala national park summit @ sunrise

The terrain looks almost alien.

haleakala national park summit @ sunrise

Especially as the sun is just rising and you can hardly see the green as the colors just start to pop in to sight.
haleakala national park summit @ sunrise

Then we did a 4 mile round trip hike up to Waimoku Falls. It is also located in the Haleakala National Park. However, the hike is on the way other side of the island.

Haleakala National Park: Waimoku Falls Trail

On the way up to the waterfall there are some pretty interesting sites.

Haleakala National Park: Waimoku Falls Trail

Haleakala National Park: Waimoku Falls Trail

I really liked the bamboo forest. The sounds in there were just amazing.

Haleakala National Park: Waimoku Falls Trail

And this totally cool tree.

Haleakala National Park: Waimoku Falls Trail

Oh and I was super excited when it started raining halfway up. I was so hot by then. My hair tie broke in the first 1/2 mile of the hike. Plus it is not an easy hike up the hill either.

Haleakala National Park: Waimoku Falls Trail

I also went snorkeling for the first time... took my "water proof" camera with me.

Random adventures in Hawaii

How fun is that!

Random adventures in Hawaii

I wish we could have done more snorkeling during this trip. We had planned on it, but it just didn't happen.

Random adventures in Hawaii

However, the most important event during this trip for us was Paul and Nicole's wedding.

Paul and Nicole's wedding

Nicole made such a beautiful bride. You can just see the happiness in her eyes.

First dance Nicole and Paul

Plus, it was a beautiful venue.

nicole and Paul's Wedding sunset

Randall and I enjoyed watching his sister get married. We had a great time at the wedding and we are so happy for them.

Randall and I at Paul and Nicole's Wedding

Also everyone signed the quilt blocks that I made for their wedding quilt. I can't wait to get those together and make them a wonderful quilt full of lots of memories and a whole bunch of kind words from people who love them very much.

Nicole and Paul's Wedding quilt/guest book table

See I did sneak quilting into this post :)

These are just few of the many pictures. I have many more pictures on flickr of the hike and our other random adventures if you are really interested in seeing them.

post signature

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Shabby Apple Giveaway and a Happy Birthday for me

Happy birthday to me... Happy birthday to me... and a happy happy giveaway for you. 

Luckily for all of you Shabby Apple has often to host a giveaway of a $50 dollar gift card for you to use towards your favorite dress. Shabby Apple is an online dress boutique that specializes in vintage and retro dresses.

If I could win this giveaway I would pick this dress as it is one of my favorite dresses. I can just imagine twirling in it :)

However, this giveaway is just for all of you. So visit the Shabby Apple take your time and find your own favorite vintage dresses. Come back and leave a comment below with your favorite. Also please make sure you use the entry from below as it is how I will be picking the winner. If you do not use the entry form your comment will not count towards an entry. And that would not be good. 

Hope you are having a wonderful day on my birthday!


Sorry, but this giveaway is only open to people with a US shipping address.

post signature

Friday, June 14, 2013

Mini Yo Yo Quilt Tutorial

This tutorial will show you how to make the yo yo mini quilt that I shared yesterday on Clover and Violet  for the a Season by Hand Series. The fun thing about this mini quilt is that it is almost completely made by hand.
Before starting this mini quilt you will need to make 23 yo yo. You can follow my tutorial to make the yo yos using charm squares.
12 x 16 solid background fabric
16 x 20 backing fabric
16 x 20 batting ( i used left over scraps) 
5 inch x WOF binding fabric subcut into 2 1/2 inch strips
water soluble fabric pen
option - applique glue, spray baste

First, take your solid background fabric and use the water soluble fabric pen to draw alignment lines. Your 1st lines will be two inches from each side. Then, draw lines every 2 inches across and every 1 1/2 inches down.

Next,  take all your little yo yo and start placing them on where the lines meet. In the first column start on the first intersecting line. Then skip one row and place your next yo yo on the following intersecting line. For the second column start on the second row. Then skip the next line. Basically you are placing the yo yos on every other intersecting line in each column.

I found that using appli-glue really helped hold them in place. You can use your favorite method. 

Next, make your quilt sandwich - lay your backing down, batting, and then you top. I used a temporary spray baste, but you can easily pin too. 

Make sure everything is nice and smooth.

Now it is time to quilt. Start from the back and bury your thread. Use a running stitch and tack down/ quilt the all the yo yos. Sorry I forgot  a picture of that. Basically you use the running stitch to both hold down each yo yo and to be your quilting.

Once you are done quilting.  Spray your mini quilt with water to get rid of the lines. Wait for the quilt to dry then square up your mini quilt and bind the quilt using your favorite method. 

Now all you have to do is find a nice spot to hang up your mini quilt. 

post signature

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Using the Yo Yo Maker with a Charm Square Tutorial

This post goes along with my post today over at Clover and Violet  for the a Season by Hand Series.

It is part of a two post series of tutorials. In this post I will share how to use the Large Clover Yo-Yo Maker with a charm square. Saving as much fabric as possible.  

Then tomorrow I will show you how to make the mini quilt for yourself. 

First you will need some supplies. 

To make the Yo Yos you will need:
The Large Clover Yo-Yo Maker
Charm Squares - at 23 if you are planning on making the mini quilt. I used a Joel Dewberry Notting Hill Charm Pack
Quilting weight thread - I used Superior Threads King Tut for mine 
Needle - I used John James Quilting Needles- Size 9
Needle Threader - I used Clover Desk Needle Threader
Scissors - Mine are OLFA  Scissors

All of these can nicely be packed up in a lovely little pouch to carry with you where ever you need to go.

The Clover Yo-Yo Maker makes it really easy to make your yo yo. First you need to start by tying a knot on your thread. I found that make the best size knot for this project is a quilter's knot that is made by wrapping the thread around the needle 4 times in a clockwise direction and then pushing the wrapped thread down the needle and all the way down thread until it makes a knot.

Now it is time to get your Clover Yo-Yo Maker ready. It has  two parts.

Your going to place your charm square right side down into the translucent piece of the Clover Yo-Yo Maker. Then put the other piece on top so you can see the writing on it. If it doesn't pop into place just re-position it until it easy pops down. Notice how I made one corner really short and left a little bit over a 1/8 of an inch on two sides. I went for closer to but not quite 1/4 inch, because it was easier for me. By doing this you save as much of the fabric as possible (I will get back to this later) If that isn't important to you then you can just center the square in the circle.

Next you cut down the sides. The directions say 1/8 to 3/8 inch.  These don't have to be perfect but I recommend greater than 1/8. Since I am not perfect about eye balling something like that and I pretty much know what a quarter inch looks like I just aimed for smaller than a quarter inch.

But you do want to be kind of careful to make sure it enough because when you are doing the next steps you are going to need enough room to hold down the fabric easily.

Once your yo yo maker is all set up you start on the top side with the opaque circle where you can see the lines and the wording. You slide your needle though one of the double openings. It is best to start next to a single opening just so you have a good idea when you are going to need to stop.

Then flip your yo you maker over so the transparent ring in on top. This is the side you will mostly work from. Pull your needle the rest of the way through and give your thread a little tug to embed the thread in the fabric. Not too hard though. Or it will pop out the other side. Not that I did something like that too many times to really count.

Now your just going to go in and out with your needle on the double hole spaces. Skipping the single hole spaces. Just keep going... back and forth... back and forth... you get the idea.

Now here are some of the things to avoid... These mishaps may happen when...  lets say when a good part comes on the show you are watching... or the dogs start barking... or husband starts asking you questions... you know any of those things that distract you from the task you are really interested in.

You don't wrap the thread around the yo yo maker.

You don't go from one hole to the other on the transparent side.

You don't miss your fabric, because you forgot to hold it down or something like that. 

Now if you didn't make any of those mistakes and you are finally back to the place where you started you are going to place your needle right next to (not on or through) the knot. Continue that stitch so the needle ends back on the opaque side. Do not pull your needle out. We aren't done with it yet.

Then press through the little hole and pop out your opaque piece with your soon to be yo yo attached.

It should all look like this. See the nice looking evenly spaced stitches. Perfect! We are almost there.

Just pop out the circle. Just pull one side off then lift the yo yo maker off.

Grab on to the needle a gently pull. This is why it is important to have a little bit thicker thread. After all that work we just did, we don't want the thread to break when we pull it to make the yo yo. If it does however, you will be happy that you make you sides a little bigger than 1/8, because you are going to have start all over. But that isn't going to happen.. hopefully.. so lets continue. Gently pull the thread. 

I found it easiest to adjust if I put my fingers in the yo yo as I pulled it tight. Sometimes you may need to easy them into looking their best. (Now where did that random piece of green come from.. oh well..)

Just keep pulling and adjusting until it is nice and tight and looks like the yo yo you want.

Then you are going to make the same quilter's knot we did before, but this time wrap the thread around the needle really close to the yo yo. You are trying to keep your knot as close to the yo yo as you can. So just go slow and gently.

Finally hide the knot by gently pulling it through one of the pleats.

TA DA! One yo yo down... many many more to go.

Now  I bet you might be wondering about that funky ring of fabric you get from doing your yo yo this way. So here is the thing... if you cut down the charm square to the size square the directions suggest you end up with two very thin slices of unusable fabric. Where as my method you can get up to three triangles.

All you do is line the fabric up with your 45 degree line on your ruler and move the ruler over as far as you can and still have a straight edge. The cut. You will end up with one good sized triangle and two smaller ones.

This might not be the most ideal way of saying some fabric, but you could make something with half square triangles, or wonky stars. or something like UP UP and AWAY from Sunday Morning Quilts
. Just a couple ideas and at least you would get more than one use out of that charm pack of yours.

sunday morning quilts bee up up and away for Fiona

Tomorrow I will share the second part of this tutorial for the directions to make the mini quilt. 

By the way this is not a sponsored post by any product.  These are all my own opinions. I just wanted to share with you the tips that I figured out while using this product. Additionally the links to amazon are my affiliate  account, it has a very minor percent back if you purchase so much and I have never hit the targeted amount to ever receive any compensation for linking to amazon. I just use it because it is the easiest way to show you what I am talking about and you don't have to search for random tools and products and hope they were what I was really talking about :) 

OK done with the fine print. See you back tomorrow for the mini quilt.