Where have I been?

Apparently it’s been a very long time since I’ve visited this here blog. VERY LONG. How embarassing. And it’s not like I haven’t been busy sewing, I’ve been very busy. I’ve been sewing up a storm. I made some clothes for my girl, I made several quilt tops, I made some bags and embroidered some shirts. I had a booth in my first ever craft fair and sewed up a storm for that. And probably a bunch of other things that I can’t even remember.

But of all the things that I worked on in 2014, it was something that I started in 2013 that I may be the most proud of.

Way back in January 2013, I signed up to participate in Alyssa’s block of the month over at Pile o’ Fabric. There were many of things about this quilt that intrigued me. It was free motion quilting for the entire thing, but you broke it down and quilted each block individually. The great thing about this technique is that you can practice on a smaller scale, as opposed to sticking the entire quilt into the machine at once. I hadn’t done a lot of FMQ prior to this quilt and had been wanting to increase my skill set and get more comfortable. I think it’s safe to say that by the time I finished this king size quilt, I was pretty comfortable.

Alyssa also covered some techniques that I didn’t have a great deal of experience with and it was nice to have some instruction and insight from someone else. There was a bit of EPP (English paper piecing) applique that I hadn’t done much of, and that was very cool. I’m not sure I’ll ever make a full size hexie quilt, that block was a bear, but never say never.


This is by far the largest quilt I’ve ever made. It’s almost a full king, it’s a wee bit narrow. I don’t think it was supposed to be that big, I didn’t exactly follow the directions as they were written (not shocking considering I’m not the best direction follower). Alyssa’s blocks were 14″-ish when trimmed and mine were 16. Consequently, everything was bigger. No matter though, I LOVE this quilt. There are some glaring quilting errors and I didn’t follow some of the tried and true quilting “rules” but I don’t care. I LOVE it. It washed up beautifully and is perfect for my bed and these cold nights. I’m seriously motivated to keep it up and continue improving my skill set.

Hello again

Apparently I took the summer off from writing. And part of the fall. I’ve missed you. I’ve composed many a post in my head but haven’t put much on paper. Or screen, as the case may be. But I’m still here, working away, raising children, sewing, exercising, wifing (I’m not sure that’s a real word), friending – busy. Busy busy.

My sewing life has been insane of late. There are days when I feel like I really know what I’m doing and things are beginning to click. I’m ripping out fewer stitches and finding it easier to follow directions. I’ve been doing all kinds of sewing – quilting, dress making for both myself and Courtney, applique work for my kids and friends, bag making, clothes making and on and on.


The 2 dresses I made are both for me, as well as the skirt! I’d seen an image of the black dress, for a pattern I already owned, on Pinterest and I knew I had to have it. It’s the perfect dress to pair with leggings or jeans in the fall and winter or to wear on its own in the summer. The skirt I made following this Craftsy class following the Sew Mama Sew Online Challenge. I didn’t win for the skirt, which I love, especially the hidden pops of color in the pocket and waistband, but the dress below DID win!

I almost didn’t enter this little dress in the competition because there were some amazing dresses in the challenge. Dresses that I wish I had made! But I love how this dress came together. It’s hard to tell but the bottom section has trees with flower blossoms blowing and the top has cute little blue birds. The one thing I did learn while making this dress, Courtney is now big that she requires more than 1 yard of fabric to complete a dress! She’s getting so big. I had to add the orange band at the bottom to complete the dress length but I do think it looks great with the fabric.

I have also been working on tons of new applique designs – all in my Etsy shop!

And of course there’s the quilting! The quilt on the left was more of just a fun, play piece. Something I could put together without a ruler, cutting on some angles and just generally playing around. The quilt on the right is the 12th Street Quilt that I helped test for Brenda at Pink Castle Fabrics. I’d been dying to make a “fall quilt” in browns and greens and oranges and I an thrilled with how quickly this came together. Of course, it’s taking me forever to get it quilted and bound but that may actually happen in the next 24 hours!

The bag on the left is a little cosmetic bag I made for a dear friend while the shirts on the right I made for another friends twin 5-year old boys.

A birthday gift for a 5 year old princess!

And lastly, I put together this table runner for my quilt guild. We were doing a fabric challenge with Hip Holiday fabric that Blend was kind enough to give us. I can’t wait to add this to my holiday table this year!

Well that’s enough for today. Hopefully someone will actually read this but to myself, I promise to do some more writing!

Summer fun

The kids and I are wrapping up a 2 week vacation at my parents house in Connecticut and I can’t believe we’ll be heading home tomorrow. Last year we were here for 12 days or so and I remember thinking that was almost too long but not so this summer. We’ve have had a great time visiting with my parents and my siblings and their families and I’m sad to be heading home. I think it helps that we broke up the 2 weeks with a trip to NH, one of my favorite places on earth.


I grew up in West Hartford and lived here until I left for college. After college I quickly made my exodus to Atlanta, where I’ve been for almost 20 years. (Holy crap!) I try and plan my trips back north for times when the weather will be nicer in the north than it is in Atlanta. Honestly, it almost never works in my favor. The weather has been hot and humid and really nasty for our entire visit. On the flip side, it’s rained nonstop in Atlanta for a month so either way, it’s a lose lose. Of course, it’s cooler in Atlanta than it is here, isn’t that always the way?

Fun at the Connecticut Science Museum

But our trip has been full of ice cream and popsicles and swimming and blueberry picking and camp and fun and family time and naps and I haven’t cooked a thing in 2 weeks but I’ve still done a ton of laundry. I’ve read a couple of books and enjoyed watching my kids be independent and playful with their cousins.

The 4 small kids melting after blueberry picking


 Come Sunday it’ll be back to reality. I’ll have to go grocery shopping and do more laundry and week my laundry and feed my children and try and find ways to entertain them for another MONTH before school starts. On the flip side, I’ll be reunited with my sewing machine and I CAN’T WAIT!!


Where have I been?

Apparently I haven’t posted here in a while. I’ve been busy but not that busy. OK, pretty busy. “Doing what” you ask? I have no idea. The kids are out of school, so there’s that. We’re swimming and driving around and camping (not as in sleeping in a tent but as in going to) and swimming some more and sweating and playing outside and trashing the house. Repeatedly. And I’ve been sewing. A lot. But I feel as though with each passing completed item, I’m getting better and better at what I’m doing. More confident. I’m not googling sewing questions, as much…

I’m currently enrolled in an online class through Whipstitch on summer dresses. I’m loving learning some new skills and sewing things for me for a change. I ended up adding a lining to the skirt of this baby doll dress. In hindsight I don’t think I needed to but it was good practice for me. The dress is fun and summery and flow-y and I’m going to enjoy feeling relaxed and comfy in this dress.

I’ve also been on a bag kick. I’m getting ready for some summer travel and I’m super excited to have some new luggage to carry all my goodies. No one’s going to mistake these bags for theirs at the airport!! I’m loving the purple polka-dot interior with colored zippers and fun pockets of the Aeroplane bag on the bottom. While most people won’t see that, I’ll know it’s there and know the pop of color surprise is in there for me! I feel like both of these bags are fun colors and will bring some sunshine to my life.


I recently finished a custom order for someone in honor of 3 sisters. I’m used to sewing clothes for smaller kids and I couldn’t get over how large a size 10 shirt is! I can’t imagine that Courtney’s ever going to fit in something that big but I imagine that day will be here before I know it (insert sad face here)!

I’ve also been doing some quilting here and there and completed this quilt top:

This picture is no good so while you can see the design, you can’t tell how awesomely vibrant the colors are or how cute they are too. Once I get the quilt sandwiched and quilted, I’ll get much better pictures!

And finally, I made this cute little shirt for Patrick. Nothing says summer to me like beaches and sailing. And while we don’t do much (any) sailing, I can’t help but love it! Maybe this summer we can get the kids on a boat…

How’s your summer been? What are you up to? Anyone else loathe applying sunblock to their children as much as I do???


If I didn’t know any better I’d think I was pregnant. I’m not. TOTALLY not. I had some surgery, NOT pregnant. Anyway… I feel like a nesting fool. My house is a disaster and I can’t stand it for another minute. The other night I was laying in bed, not sleeping and couldn’t decide if I should get up to clean a closet. I mean, for 30 minutes I all I could think about was cleaning a closet! What’s wrong with me?

So Tuesday I tackled the closet. It wasn’t even a bad closet. But then I tackled another one. And THEN, I warned Paul ahead of time, I HAD to tackle the playroom. HAD to. And Paul and I did. It was BAD and still needs some work but it’s WAY better than it was. There’s a floor in there. And the train table is meant for trains, go figure.

But I’m not done. I started in on some books. LOTS and LOTS of books. First I dove into the book shelf in the playroom and then the books in the guest room. Our last home had TONS of built in book shelves but our current home does not. We have almost no shelving so books need to go out once I’m done with them (the kids books stay and multiply like tiny little rabbits). I like to post books on PaperBackSwap.com and send them off to other lovers of books and then when I’m ready for new books, I can get them there as well. And they’re basically free. So I posted a bunch of books there and now I need to pack them up and send them off.

But I’m still not done. I need to hit the kids rooms. And my own room. Again. And the kitchen. And the rest of the guest room. Oh my, it’s never ending. But there’s just so much stuff here and I feel like I’m going to end up in a tent (that I won’t be able to find) in the yard because the STUFF is taking over my house. AAAHHHHH!!!

Needless to say, the sewing has slowed down. Not tons and tons but some. But that’s OK because maybe I’ll find more fabric while I’m busy nesting…

A quilt in the making

I picked up some fabric (shocking, I know) at my local quilt shop a month or so ago. They’d pre-cut the fabric and there were these adorable little bundles and it just screamed little girl quilt and so I bought some. Or maybe I’m just a sucker and I can’t resist ANY fabric. I think that’s more likely.

Anyway, I’d seen this quilt on Pinterest and I was all inspired. So I cut squares and then made triangles and then sewed them back together and then ironed this huge stack of fabric. And then I had to figure out how to lay them all out. So I played.

And then I played some more.

And some more…

And I felt I was getting closer but knew this wasn’t quite it.

And then I got it! I’m thrilled with how this is working. Except for the fact that I’m short fabric. HOW CAN I BE SHORT FABRIC!?!?!

But I did have a few extra blocks, just not in the right colors. I was thinking of making a couple of pillows but Patrick decided to make a bed.

(Please excuse my terrible pictures, this is what happens when you take pictures in your pathetically lit basement.)

Blocks for Boston

In the wake of the Boston bombing, the Boston Modern Quilt Guild formed Quilts for Boston, a relief effort to make quilts for those that have been directly affected by the bombing and subsequent events. The only requirements were that the blocks be at least 12.5″  on one side as well as blue, yellow and grey in color.

I decided to go ahead and order some fat quarters and use some of my stash to create a few blocks.

The first 2 blocks were from a pattern. A few easy HST’s, a cool layout and voila! I love these blocks although the second block is pretty busy.

This block I just made up with some of the fabric I had left. I wanted to highlight the flowers and wanted to do something fun.

This isn’t much for me to do in light of what happened in Boston. I feel like as a New Englander and as a runner, the bombing hit close to home. A run like that should be peaceful, fun, safe. There’s a big run here on the 4th of July, it’s a 10k but there are tens-of-thousands of people that run it, myself included. It’s a wonderful event with tons of spectators and goodness and camaraderie and it’s a great time had by all. But this year it won’t be quite the same. There will be uncertainty and a sense of uneasiness. Life shouldn’t be like that.

My hope is that the recipients of these quilts find some peace and comfort, some love and maybe a virtual hug. It’s the least I can do.

My Velocity Girl Bag

An embarassingly long time ago, Sara from Sew Sweetness had a shout out on Facebook asking if anyone wanted to try one of her bag patterns and post about it on their sewing blogs. I immediately emailed her to express my interest. I’d seen her Dot Dot Dash bag live and in person at a West Modern Quilt Guild meeting and was instantly smitten. My big dilemma – which bag do I choose? Sara sent me 3 designs and eventually I settled on the Velocity Bag as my bag of choice. Then, because I’m a dork, I spent WEEKS trying to decide what fabric to use. If you’re going to make a kick-butt bag like this, you don’t want to use just any fabric. And while I don’t 100% love this fabric, I’m pretty pleased with how it looks.

What’s not to love about this bag? It has NINE pockets. NINE!!  Five outer pockets, 3 inner pockets that are perfect for keys, slipping your cell phone into and other items that you may need to access quickly. But it also has an inner zippered pocket. I mean, COME ON! Awesome.

The strap on this bag is adjustable, which I love. I hate when you love a bag but it just doesn’t seem to hang right. The Velocity bag also has a magnetic snap to keep it closed. The next one I make (and I will make it again) will probably have a zippered closure. I have a knack for throwing my bag in the car, the bag falling over and everything falling out of it. Not awesome.

And this bag is super sturdy. Sara suggests Annie’s soft and stable as well as another interfacing for extra reinforcement. The Annie’s alone is crazy sturdy, this bag isn’t going anywhere.

I love this bag and hope to get a ton of use out of it. This could be the perfect summer bag with lots of pockets for extra small water bottles, sunscreen and everything we’ll need for life out and about and on the go.

What’s happenin’ little lady?

My sweet girl, Courtney, has been growing by leaps and bounds of late. I hate it. I ask her frequently to stop growing and she tells me she can’t, as long as she keeps eating she’ll keep growing. Touche my friend, touche. She did tell me the other day that no matter how big she got, she’d always be my little girl. Just like I’m still my mommy and daddy’s little girl. *Sobbing* my friend, just sobbing.

Four is a tough age. You aren’t big but you’re bigger. You can’t read but you’re close. You aren’t the mother to your little brother but you act like it. You miss nothing but you just don’t understand it all. You question everything but not in the same way your little brother does with the never-ending whys? It’s hard. I get it. Or I don’t. I try.

I do my best to spend one-on-one time with Courtney. She’s exhausting. She has more energy that my Jack Russel Terrier did when he was a pup. I can’t keep up. But I remember the best thing I can do for her is to love her and to listen to her and to be there. Really there.  Because some days you leave the running shoes in the closet, you ignore the dishes in the sink, and you don’t do the sewing that’s pulling you in. You just be with your girl.

Sew Mama Sew Giveaway!

We had a very odd weekend here in Atlanta. Rain, more rain, more more rain, sun, clouds, more rain and the temperature was never very warm. Saturday would have been the PERFECT day to get some sewing done if I hadn’t been so unbelievably busy! Actually, I did finish two items that I’ve been working on for a while and I’m THRILLED to have them finished.

But that’s not why you’re here today! Let’s talk GIVEAWAY! I love giveaway week over at SewMamaSew. I mean, who doesn’t love giveaways!!  If you haven’t had a chance, you should check out all the giveaways they have going on this week, it’s awesome. I mean, you’ll need to sit down with a ton of time and a cup of tea to enter them all but you never know, you could win!

This year I’ll be giving away some kids items. I’m feeling summery, despite the fact that the temperature in Atlanta isn’t going to get out of the 60’s today. You have a couple of items to choose from:

The flip flop shirt is great for your little lady for the summer or you can choose from the watermelon truck for you little guy! And really, if you have something else in mind that you’d prefer, we can definitely work together and come up with a new idea. I’m totally flexible! The shirts are 100% cotton, prewashed, and perfect for summer fun. I’ll ship to you, anywhere in the world, and I’d love for you to enter my giveaway today.

The only caveat… Let’s see… Why don’t you tell me where your favorite vacation spot is OR where you’d go if money and time weren’t a factor! I’ll choose a winner via random number and will close this post on May 10th at 8EST.


****And the winner is…

Michelle Frame – And she’s taking me to Bali or Fiji!! OK, not really but YAY for Michelle!