Tuesday, September 18

Nine Patched

Curt's family has a gorgeous stash of old family quilts around their house, and this one in particular has always been my favorite.

{Special thanks to Curt's little sis Cali for snapping this pic for me to reference!}

It's a simple nine-patch, set on white fabric. The fabrics are all different, but very cohesive. I've been wanting to recreate it for some time, and finally came up with the best answer I could find: use my beloved stash of Denyse Schmidt fabrics to make my own version!

All the blocks are the same - four printed squares, five white ones.

It made for very easy chain piecing.

I did a bunch at a time, working on them for a couple days.

And before I knew it, I had all the blocks I needed (56 if you are interested).

I laid it out to see how they looked and to make sure I had a good, even balance of color and such. It's still on the floor - I walk by it and move a couple blocks here and there. Once I settle on the layout I will get to work on the sashing. 

I love how Denyse's fabrics lend to the vintage feel of this quilt, as well as the old school pattern. And I can't wait to see it finished! 

Monday, September 17

Dream On

I lost my sewing mojo for a month or so there, but I think I've found it and I'm back. It was just a matter of forcing myself to stitch something, anything, together, and I now have one finished quilt top and half of another to show for it.

I've been hoarding a few charm packs of Dream On by Urban Chiks for Moda for quite some time now. The prints are all reproductions of vintage sheets and they are so charming. I had debated for a long time about what kind of pattern I wanted to use, but ultimately decided to just go with a simple patchwork quilt and left all the charms as squares. That also meant I didn't have to plan anything - I just randomly pieced the squares together. I also added in a couple pastel voile fabrics so I could have a nice lap size quilt.

I think I ended up doing 12X14 5" charms, resulting in a quilt that's approximately 54 X 63. 

I knew I wanted to find a vintage sheet for the back, and I really lucked out in my search and found that exact yellow w/green ribbon sheet on Etsy! The original is a larger scale and a bit brighter, but it will be perfect for the back. 

I'm still debating how to quilt this one. Straight lines on either edge of the seam? Straight lines going diagonally through the quilt? Tie it? Any suggestions are welcome! I have some batting stashed away, so I'm planning to get it basted and ready to go this week. Hopefully by that time I will know what I want to do about quilting it. 

What are you working on right now? 

Wednesday, August 1

Finger Lickin'

Curt left for his Australian tour a week ago which is a bummer for me, but actually big ups for my belly. See, when he goes away I can cook whatever I want - no need to worry about his picky eating habits. 

Not only do I find new recipes on Pinterest, I also like to house them there. Here's what I've been eating for the last week.

~Shrimp-stuffed avocados 
(Click the pics or links for Pinterest click-throughs)

YUM! I adapted the recipe a bit to accommodate the fresh veg I had on hand: red and yellow bell peppers, onion, and cucumber. I also just used the olive oil mayo I have in the fridge with cilantro and lime juice. Here's what mine looked like:

It's essentially a fancy egg salad. I ate it straight in the avocado the first night, on a sandwich the next, and munched the last of it with chips. I halved the recipe but that was still a lot of salad and I got a bit tired of it by the third day.

~Chicken with a Dijon/Maple Syrup sauce

This dish was tasty, but I don't know if it's "The World's Best Chicken" as the pin describes. I'll probably make this again though, especially since it only requires ingredients that are already in my fridge. I'll have to see if Curt likes it when he gets back. Sorry, no pictures of my own, ate it up too quick :)

~Orzo with Asparagus and Tomatoes

This pin gets lots of action and now I know why - it is delicious! It was very simple to make, with lots of fresh ingredients. Here it is all chopped up and ready to go in my kitchen.

The tomatoes from my garden were especially delicious! The parsley was from my garden too :) 

And there it is in my bowl, which didn't last long, and was quickly refilled. I will definitely be making this again! It was tasty hot and cold, and the leftovers tasted just as good as the first night.

As you may be able to tell from these three, I like recipes that use simple and fresh ingredients. Even better if they are growing in my backyard! 
What are your favorite summer recipes?

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Monday, July 23

Done Deal and Moving On.

I finished my watermelon socks prior to the weekend and took all day Sunday to rekindle my relationship with Pretty Little Liars on Netflix and start a new pair of socks.

{Pattern: My adapted version of Hermione's Everyday Socks | Yarn: Knit Picks Stroll Handpainted in Watermelon}

I'm head over heels in love with this new pair - not only are the colors fabulous, the yarn is lush, and the socks are fitting like a dream. 

{Pattern: My adapted toe-up, smaller-sized version of Jeck | Yarn: Knit Picks Felici Sock Yarn in Tiki}

That yarn would make an adorable baby girl sweater - I might buy some now while it's on sale and stash it away for the next baby girl to come along in the family. 

What are you working on this week?

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Tuesday, July 17

Summer Socks

I have been knitting up a storm this summer, and I have a few new pairs of socks to show for it.

This pair was a very long work in progress. The socks are made from the little remnant balls of yarn left from other sock projects. I knit two different yarns at a time, alternating rows, then swapping out one color for another, creating a blend of colors. It was a huge pain the bun, what with carrying around umpteen tiny balls of yarn and weaving in all those ends, but I think it was worth it. The Scrap Vomit of socks, if you will.

The pattern I used is called Charade, which I modified to work toe-up in a narrower size.

Next up was a very quick pair of toe-less, heel-less socks, perfect for those nights when I want something on my feet but it's just too hot to wear full-on socks.

I modified these Yoga Socks so it's just a straight knit throughout and smaller fit.

The yarn is Knit Picks Palette in Semolina *I think*

The yoga socks were really just a stash project to tide me over until a package arrived with new yarn. Included in the package was a couple skeins of Imagination - one of my favorite soft & squishy yarns. I have another pair in the Frog Prince colorway from years ago (now discontinued), and I couldn't wait to start knitting with this gorgeous Unicorn colorway.

I dove right into some late night bed knitting, as well as a few unusual spots.

The toes and feet were knit while waiting in line to see Ed Sheeran perform in Nashville. We waited outside in 90+ heat for about four hours. Needless to say, I got a lot of knitting done and the show was a-mah-zing.

The last half of these socks were knit in the car on our way to Gatlinburg, as well as while driving and hiking through the Smoky Mountains. The pattern in my own design - a simple lace in toe-up. I kept these anklets because I only had 219 yards of yarn :)

That brings me to my latest project, which is still on the needles:

The yarn is Stroll Hand Painted in Watermelon and the 462 yards goes a long way on my tiny feet. My plan was to knit until I ran out of yarn, but I think I might end up with weird knee socks if I do that.

I think I'm about ready to start the cuff, which will give the socks another inch or two and then I'll call it good.  

Congratulations! You made it to the end of this post about socks! Go pour yourself a cold one and get someone to pat you on the back. 

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Sunday, July 15

Excuse Me

Excuse me while summer just whizzes by and I'm left in the dust wondering where the heck the time went. Hows about I just update you via Instagram for a couple posts?

My family came to visit for a week and we made sure to jam pack in as much fun stuff as we could, including, but not limited to:

1. Father's Day feast complete with wine sampler
2. A winning baseball game
3. Ed Sheeran live in a very intimate concert
4. Hours long trip in the car to Gatlinburg
5. Amazing view of the earth
6. Hikes to see waterfalls
7. Scariest chairlift ever
8. Equally scary fall down the mountain after it absolutely poured rain on us

Not pictured: Honky Tonks, Scattegories, gardening, sewing, moonshine drinking, antiquing, nearly passing out on the Appalachian Trail, reading The Hunger Games out loud, hanging pictures, and watching old baseball clips on YouTube. All-in-all it was really quality family time! 

Have you taken any trips this summer? What's your favorite family getaway spot? 

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Friday, June 8

that one time

A quick photo post is better than nothing, eh?

Last weekend Curt & I hopped a plane to Grand Rapids to see his sister compete in a statewide volleyball tournament. 
I happened to surprise my grandparents with a quick visit. This silly lady kept telling me she thought she was dreaming :) 

I rarely miss an opportunity to eat at my favorite joints while home, and this little family trip to Yesterdog did not disappoint! 

Wednesday was Curt's 28th birthday. We celebrated by working all day and partying for a minute before falling asleep on the couch that night. His requested cake was Cake Batter ice cream with Oreos mixed in, a layer of fudge, yellow cake, chocolate ganache, and Oreo crumbs on the side. It was delicious! 

My garden gave me a couple more strawberries this week and they were delicious! I can't believe how much better strawberries are from the garden rather than the store. 

My harvest: The last of the lettuce (had to dig them up, they're bolting), carrots, and said strawberry.

I've also been taking a few photos of my feet recently... don't know what that's about ... 

And lastly: I got some new "toys" at work in the form of new sprinkles to put on cake pops. It's heavenly. 

This weekend Curt and I will actually have a chance to stay home and relax. I plan on altering a pair of pants to make them skinny and hopefully red. What are you weekend plans? 

PS: Anna Maria posted some more info about her gorgeous booth if you'd like a closer look! I can't wait for people to get their hands on this new line, it's fabulous!

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