August 29, 2013

Big Sale at Tiny Prints

Hey, I just want to shout out
a big sale happening now at Tiny Prints!

The daily deal described below is over now, but you're still in luck.

There's an awesome Labor Day sale happening all weekend long!
Head on over now to Tiny Prints and shop around.
The sale is 25% off sitewide!!!
Use code LABOR13 for the discount.

You'll have to hurry to take advantage of this one-day wonder of a deal.

Creating custom business cards is easy:

1. Visit their Deal of the Day Page. Click through to the business cards. Make sure to do so before 7:30 AM PT Friday August 30 to allow yourself time to finish your order by 8:00 AM PT.

2. Choose from hundreds of designs. Pick the one that best fits your personality.

3. Customize the cards. Pick your own fonts, add pictures to some designs, choose your favorite colors, and play with the design. Make it scream "you."

4. Double check your design. Make sure it looks like you want it to.

5. Checkout. When you checkout, use the promo code DEAL0829 for 50% off. 

That's it! Super simple, but you have to act fast. 

They'll be to your door in about a week. Then you just need to start handing them out!

{I'm a new affiliate of Tiny Prints, so you will be seeing posts and tweets from me periodically, to announce sales.}

Happy Labor Day, everyone!

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Christmas Pinwheels

As another month came to a close,
I found myself hustling
to make something else for our
as well as for my monthly Christmas project.

Christmas Pinwheels count for both!

While I was researching
ideas for the Pinwheel theme for August's
Across The Pond Sew Along, I came across this block.

It's called Flying Kite fun!

I found an error in this PDF for the block,
plus I didn't want my block to be as large,
so I decided to draft my own version.

I used some of my red/white/blue repro 30's prints,
as I'd done in my Daisy Pinwheel block.
These were my first efforts...
I love this one, but the points were too close to the edges!

Back to the drawing board!
This time I got the points right, but the blue triangle size was a bit off.

The third time was the charm, using my Cherry Christmas prints.
My method of making this block results
in a pair of blocks that are mirror images.
See how they spin in opposite directions?

{Oh, never's dizzying to figure that out!}

All it took was a wee bit of quilting to convert the 8 1/2" blocks
into a pair of pretty mug rugs for Christmas.

{Note to self:  Points on the edges will be hidden under binding.}

for Machine Binding, and it was a quick finish.

Here's the back of the red one.

Here's the green one, on the back.

And now I've got some cute mug rugs,
ready for Christmas cocoa and cookies...
when the time comes.

Have you made any pinwheels this month?
It's never too late!
Show off your finishes at the Across The Pond Flickr group.

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August 21, 2013

Patchwork Please - Happy Hexagon Trivet

Thank goodness I've got Bloglovin'...
otherwise I may not have realized that
this week's Patchwork, Please Zakka 2.0 Sew Along
is all about the Happy Hexagon Trivet!

This sweet project was one of my must-makes,
from the first time I paged through my copy of the book.

I see that it is rated 2-stars on the difficulty scale.

There must only be 2 stars on that scale,
because I found this project to be
a lot more complicated than I expected.
I made the mistake of trying to blend
regular paper piecing and freezer paper template

{Note to self:  Don't ever do that again!  Try just the normal paper piecing.}

That being said,
I'm super excited about the way
my new mug rug turned out.

I'm showing off one of the three Cath Kidston
mugs I purchased a few months ago.

{They are among my most loved possessions.}

Let's get to the "likes" and "dislikes" for the project...
dislikes are always first.

Right off the bat,
I was highly disappointed that the paper
piecing pattern requires enlarging.

In the end, the entire pattern still fit on a single page of paper.
Why couldn't the publishers have printed it at actual size???

I was going to bind my project as described in the book,
but my outer fabrics would have been nearly covered
by the thick binding.
That's most likely because I didn't remember
to cut the outer edges plenty large enough to allow
for a decent seam allowance.

That brings me to the Likes.
with a 1 1/2" single fold binding.
It worked pretty well, even on the angles.

{Like:  new skill acquired.  I had never bound a hexagon before.}

Also, I really like the size of this project.
There's plenty of room for a large mug and a snack.
Alternately, a little tea pot would fit perfectly on this trivet.

I also like the way it looks on the back...
just as cute as the front, really!

Most of all, though, the best Like for this project
is that it is such a beautiful design.
Ayumi's gifts are being shared all over blogland.
Her version is exquisite,
and I love every variation I've seen so far, being made by others.

I love cherries in the kitchen,
and this project was great for using
a variety of cherry prints and polka dots I've been collecting.

Maybe time will help me to forget
all of the labor pains I withstood,
to end up with my lovely mug rug.
A nice cup of tea will also work wonders!
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August 19, 2013

Nautical Pillows for the Deck

As summer draws to a close,
time spent on our back deck becomes more cherished.
That's why I jumped at the opportunity
to stitch up some fabulous nautical pillows,
using these awesome prints from Terry's Fabrics!

has a vast selection of fabrics,
so it wasn't easy to choose between them.
 I had THE BEACH on my mind, so
my search for a focus fabric ended as soon as I discovered
this awesome nautical beach hut print.

I mixed in some fun coordinates:
an ocean blue geometric floral,
some sandy gingham, and fun beach-ball dots.

When I saw the fabrics in person,
I was delighted with the way my choices coordinated!
The prints were actually much larger than I had pictured them...
especially the dots...but that was a GREAT thing!

The quality is superior, and the fabrics were
highly cooperative, with no stiffness or tendency to fray.
All of my prints were home dec weight, except the gingham,
which was a lighter weight, more like quilter's cotton,
but woven...not printed.

I chose to use the gingham for my pillow backings,
and it worked perfectly, since I like to add a layer of
Pellon ShapeFlex SF 101 fusible interfacing anyway.

I kept the pillow top designs simple,
letting the fabrics play together in similar, 
but different strip sets, for the two pillows.

I stuffed my pillow forms inside,
and they were all set for picnics on the deck.

{I love the way the covers take up almost no space at all for winter storage,
and I can use the pillow forms for other covers.}

Beach huts, umbrellas, and bunting...
checks, stripes and dots...
just about all of my favorites are represented!

Terry's Fabrics is my favorite new find of the summer,
helping me to decorate my outdoor space.

Hmm...wouldn't the scraps make
the cutest beach tote???

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August 16, 2013

Gingham Love

I love gingham.
You probably knew that already if you've
been visiting my blog often.

Here's where my love of gingham all began...

Truthfully it began even before this...
I'm pretty sure I made myself a prom gown
from this same blue gingham in the late 70s.

{Stop know you wore some crazy get-ups in the 70s, too!  
Or at least your mother did.  Or your grandmother.}

my sister has the full story of these gingham pillows
we made a loooooong time ago,
over at Susie's Sunroom.

We were inspired by this pattern published
in the June 1979 Better Homes & Gardens magazine.
Embroidering on gingham is called "chicken-scratch".

{See that pillow on the rocker?}

Photo from Susie Z. on Flickr
In all, Susie and I stitched up three of those pillows,
in blue, purple and green.
Susie came across two of them,
and our mom has the third.

These were a great way for two {young} sisters to spend
one of the last leisurely summers of our young lives.

I've got to admit that this is really out of style,
and the stuffing is all lumpy.

The floss colors are also dated,
but if I recall, there were probably only about
20 shades of embroidery floss available back then!

{Dark blue, light blue, dark yellow, light yellow, dark green, light green...}

A few of the stitches have worked loose,
and the lace is kinda faded,
but it's still a pretty reminder of good times.

This early influence still shows up now and then
in my latest projects...

I especially still love gingham in the kitchen.

I'll bet that's why I chose gingham for the background
in my Winter Dresden quilt, too.

Head on over to Susie's Sunroom today for the full story
of our gingham days!
I think I may be inspired to try a little chicken-scratch
this summer!

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August 10, 2013

Daisy Pinwheel Block

It appears that I'm not the only one
who really loves Pinwheels,
our August theme for 
the Across The Pond Sew Along!

Besides Susie and Amanda,
who have already been making their Pinwheel projects,
there's a whole new fun series going on
over at Summercrafter,

{Elaine's first featured block is actually the Pinwheel.}

Well, it's not Friday night any more,
but I'm going to join the party, fashionably late.

One of the Pinwheels I highlighted in my pinwheel theme
post was called Daisy Pinwheel,
I decided to make this block and try my hand
at a bit of curved piecing.

I'm happy to report that it was actually
very easy to make this pretty pinwheel!

Keeping the vintage vibe,
I chose some of my 30's repro scraps
in reds, whites and blues.

I just followed Charise's directions to create the pinwheel.

{I think the pattern was missing one of the notches, but I just folded my pattern in half and marked the notch there.}

I chose to use freezer paper for my templates.
I traced the pattern onto the paper side of the freezer paper,
then cut them out on the drawn lines.
Seam allowances were already included.

I have to admit that I chose to iron my freezer paper
templates onto the WRONG side of the fabrics.
This worked fine, but if you want your pinwheel
to spin in the same direction as Charise's,
just iron all of the templates to the RIGHT sides of the fabric.

I almost called it "finished"
when I saw that the center points all
came together fairly nicely.

Then I decided to make one little yoyo for the center,
using another cute repro print...

and stitch it into place, along with a button.

That's it's done!

Have fun making your own pinwheels,
and link up at Summercrafter
and the Across The Pond Sew Along on Flickr!

{I know I'm not finished yet making Pinwheels!}

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