7.03.2015

Tie Dye Day

Found a squirt gun tie dye idea on Skip To My Lou and had to try it. (We used Tulip tie dye rather than Kool-Aid.)
  
Leanne and I went to the dollar store Tuesday and purchased a selection of squirt guns,
  
along with some spray bottles - just in case. 
 
Turns out "just in case" was a good idea. 
 
The girls loved using the squirt guns,
 
but they ran out of "ammo" quickly and 3 of the 5 guns jammed and were out of commission before we ran out of dye.
 
We dyed 4 t-shirts - 2 each for the girls to turn into beaded swim suit cover-ups on our next craft day -
 
2 "super hero" capes*, 
 
a cotton shirt for me, and two old bedsheets that have a lot of use left in them but were looking a bit dingy. 
 

As you can tell from Leanne's shirt, we've done tie dye before. So I know - or should have known - to put gloves on before mixing the dye.  
But where's the fun in that??? **
 

*Super Hero cape = one XXLong men's sleeveless t-shirt cut in half at the shoulder seams and the sides, with ribbons sewn on at the shoulders. The idea is to thread the ties from the neck, out through the sleeves and tie it together on their back rather than around their necks. I think it will work, but Leanne wasn't willing to let me try it today.

** Palmolive dish soap and salt got my hands clean(ish)! Playing in the bathtub a couple of times took the dye off Leanne's foot.  

7.02.2015

A Day With Monkey

Leia stayed with us overnight Sunday, so Monday was a "catch-up" day - doing all the fun, crafty things that await at grandma's house.
 
We made cookies - 
 
Shopped for shoes ($3 thrift store find) - 
 
Made Leia's favorite "yucky stuff" - 
 
with all the spices in the pantry, while she carried on a constant cooking show-type monologue.
 
And finished up with dinner with Daddy.  Fortunately, he didn't have to eat the "yucky stuff".
 
Happy Monkey. Happy Grandma.

7.01.2015

Bruges Crochet Scarf

This one has been done for awhile, just waiting to be blocked.
  
The yarn is Knitted Wit's Cashy - merino, cashmere and nylon - and it is luscious, especially once it's blocked. So light and airy!
 
After a bit of trial and error, I figured out a way to join the two ends in pattern to form an infinity cowl. Yay, me! Now I just need to remember how I did it when it comes time to write the pattern.
 
I'm teaching this as a class in late July 
 
and I've already started another Bruges project, this time a triangle shawl using a slightly different method for the curves. Lovin' the Bruges!

6.26.2015

Row By Row Experience

My buddies and I had a quilting day scheduled, but today was just too hot to sit around my non-air-conditioned house. 
Panel from Candy's Quiltworks; feather batik from Homestead Treasures; dark blue and two fabric rolls - pillowcase material - from Patches; orange fabric and zippered pouch from Quilt Emporium; patriotic charm pack, below, from Cotton and Chocolate.

Instead, we headed for some almost-local quilt shops that are participating in the Row By Row Experience. And, just by chance, some of these same shops are also doing the So. Calif. Quilter's Run. Whoohoo, double presents for us!
 
Our main goal was to pick up the free Row By Row patterns and (not free) license plate fabrics each shop is offering until September. The Quilt Run shops were also giving away free block patterns and a Robert Kaufman fat quarter. Score!
 I bought Row kits from Candy's and Quilty Pleasures. I'm also planning to get a kit for Quilt Ventura's Row.

Our first stop, Homespun Treasures in Camarillo, was the most expensive for me, as always. Love Susan's taste in fabric!
  
I fell hard for the Nemo fabric and picked up complimentary fabric at the rest of our stops to make a dull, boring super colorful quilt, probably for one of the little girls.
 
I found the mermaid panel and coordinating fabric at Quilty Pleasures in Simi. I'm hoping it will make a quick baby gift for one of Marie's oldest friends.  
 
In Chatsworth, at Patches, I spotted this zoo fabric from the same line as the Martian fabric (Greetings, Earthlings!) I bought in Orcutt on our Gold Coast quilt run in May. Love this stuff!!
 
Rainbow snails and zebras for the win!

6.25.2015

More Round Things

A few more bowls . . .
 
This one went home with Breanne today.
 
I was regretting the orange center, thinking it didn't match well enough.
  
First thing Bre said when she saw the bowl? "I love the orange!"
 
A birthday present for a friend - 
 
Sandy likes Fall colors - something we have in common - so I'm hopeful she'll like this.
 
I may have to make another for me. . . .

Remember yesterday's lost cause? Turns out my finishing problems were operator error.
 
It's still a weird shape, but I love it!

And I solved a problem I was having on the bottom of each bowl. The zig-zag stitch for the ribs was a mess,
 
so I pulled the bobbin thread up before I started sewing, like you do (or are supposed to do) for quilting. 
 
Much nicer.

6.23.2015

Bowling Along

This week was dedicated to making more fabric bowls. I wanted to practice what I learned in class, but I also wanted to experiment with size and shape.

Hubby, bless him, copied the template I made in class onto clear plastic, cleaning up my "almost" even edges and centering things properly.  This is going to make things soooo much easier!
 
First up was batiks, made with the class template on one side and longer, slightly wider cuts on the other. 
 
What I learned: Use an open-toed foot on the sewing machine so I can better see what I'm doing and the center circle comes out a bit less wonky. I'm calling this one "artistic expression" and pretending it doesn't bother me.
  
The original darts - approx 1" across and 1.25" deep - make the sides curve more (left side above).
 
Deeper darts - approx 1.25" across and 2" deep - make for smoother, less upright sides(left side above). This bowl is mine; it makes me smile every time I see it.

What grandma has, Leanne wants, so a Minnie Mouse/My Little Pony mash-up was next.
 
I used a bowl and glass* from my cupboard - 
  

and I like the size/shape of this one. 
 
The center stitching is better too, which makes me happy. (Note: darts started 1/2" across, 1" deep; final size 3/4" across; approx 1.25" deep.)

Then I went a little crazy. 
 
This is using the original template, but I cut the three darts on the left 2+" wide (note: added .5" to each side of template dart) and 1.25" deep. Waaaaaay too steep a curve. 
 
I relaxed the darts, going back to the original pattern width and slightly longer depth for the remaining cuts. 
 
I kinda like the shape - baseball cap bowl?? - but my sewing machine hates it.
There's not enough room to get it under the needle, to do the finish edge stitching, without bending and smashing the bowl out of shape. And if I do manage to get it in position, the machine flat refuses to cooperate. Going to give it another try tonight - never say die! - but this one may be a lost cause.


*Breanne made the glass for me, from a wine bottle. Isn't it pretty? And isn't she talented??