Friday, November 30, 2012

State Pillow

Hey yall! Just a quick post today! Reagan and I are enjoying every minute of our last couple days together before job and day care start. Actually, we're went in to work today for a little bit (an almost half day) just to set up a couple things ...so not a whole lot of much going on around these parts.

Except for I may have decorated for Christmas. All that's left is the tree... and possibly more pillow covers. But you have to wait for it all to be up before I'll share pictures. :)

Today during Reagan's nap, I worked on a quick project that wasn't on my list at all. I'm (fingers crossed that I'm off from the hotel) going to the Sigma Alumnae Christmas dinner soon, and we're supposed to bring a gift. A gift for an auction. Well, what do you get a group of ladies that you sort of know. You don't. You make it. You do if you're me.

SC State Pillow

I've seen lots of really cool state stuff out there on Pinterest and other social media sites, and I was really inspired to make something South Carolina based. I figured that'd go over well with the crowd.

I made the background out of two and half inch square pieces, and appliqued on the state outline. I used Kona white for South Carolina and Kona Coal for the rest of the pillow. The squares are from my stack of mini charms.

SC State Pillow Close Up

I think it's pretty cool. What do yall think?

We're supposed to wrap our gift, so I think I'm going to whip up a quick lined drawstring bag. That way it'll be reusable. I've been wanting to try this tutorial by Jeni over at In Color Order (a GREAT quilting/sewing blog) so this'll be the perfect reason to. Hopefully I'll have time this weekend to sit down and make that. I have a few other things on my list. :)

Anyways, tonight we're celebrating the new job by sushi dinner! :) Yay! Take care yall!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

officially the cutest baby ever

Job & Pillows

Good afternoon yall! :) Hope everyone is having a great week! I am!

First of all, I got a job!! YAY!!!! :) One that I'm super excited about. I'm going to be coming on board with an educational consulting group in Columbia. Love the ladies that run this group and think that I'll be able to be an integral part of their group. A little bit different direction than teaching but one where I'll be able to merge all of my previous work experiences. :)

That, of course, means that little Reagan will be starting her own adventure into day care. I've picked out one that is close to our home, has a great reputation, and two very sweet ladies in her room. We'll see how it goes. I think Reagan will be fine... it's mommy who we all need to worry about. Don't worry--I'll pack extra makeup to fix my face after I drop her off. I'm sure that there will be plenty of tears involved.

Don't get me wrong. I'm beyond thrilled to be going back to work. Honestly, I've had longer to be home than I ever imagined. I'm so grateful for having the past 11 months to be home with her. But, I'm looking forward to being a professional again. To having more to anchor my days. I will miss having her with me all the time, but I know that this is the right decision. Yall remind me of that when I have emotional days about leaving her in day care. We had hoped that we would find someone to watch her in their home, but we never really found anyone. That's okay. I know that there is a reason for everything. :)

I'll be leaving my hotel job. :) It's been an interesting experience and a real sanity saver but I don't want to work two jobs unless I absolutely have to. I need that time with my daughter and husband. I'm hoping to work a couple weeks into December and then that'll be that.

Yesterday and today, in between working on day care paperwork, picking up shot records, etc. I've starting working on Christmas. I pulled out one box of Christmas decorations (the one that I could reach), and set those things out. I also made the front of a Christmas pillow, and am working on getting the zipper put in for it. I used this wonderful tutorial from Alyce at Blossom Heart Quilts. It's from the A Very Merry Christmas HST Sampler, but I just used more of the half square triangles to make my much larger. Mine ended up measuring right at 16 inches square. I love how it looks!
Christmas Chevron Pillow Front by mrsrachelsbooth

Christmas Chevron Pillow Front Close Up by mrsrachelsbooth

Here's a view out of the top. I love that it's fairly subtle but still very fun and Christmas-y. I used red thread to quilt it following the shape of the chevrons. I stitched inside and outside of the green chevrons by 1/4 inch. My fabrics are: a green snowman fat quarter from Creative Sewing Machine Center (no selvage so I'm not sure who made it), the red cardinal print from Creative Thursday's Santa Claus Is Coming to Town, and the red floral print is actually not a Christmas print. It's from the Riley Blake fat quarter bundle that my parents gave to me for my birthday . I made this one as a zippered pillow. I just used a random zipper that's 14 inches long. I like my pillow covers to be fairly tight, so I really like how it turned out. I didn't make it the same on both sides, so this one has a definite front and back. I used Kona Natural for the back.

This pillow is an envelope pillow. I used this tutorial from Love Some . I used one of my very favorite Christmas prints... I actually have enough to make a dress for Reagan or a top for me, so yall might see it again. The fabric is from Michael Miller (I think)... :) I love the pops of pink in it. Sorry for the fuzzy picture!! 
Christmas Pillow by mrsrachelsbooth
Christmas Pillow, a photo by mrsrachelsbooth on Flickr.

Here they are together on the sofa. What do yall think? Pretty cute, huh?
Christmas Pillows by mrsrachelsbooth
Christmas Pillows, a photo by mrsrachelsbooth on Flickr.

Personally, I LOVE them. Although, I have a sneaking suspicion that the hubby is gonna say that they're too girly.  OH well. :) It's just for Christmas, right? I should probably do a Christmas pillow that is less girly.

Hope yall are having a good day! :) Take care, yall!

Monday, November 26, 2012

Selfish Request

Hey yall! I promise I'll have a good post up sometime tomorrow but in the meantime, a selfish request....
Will you please go to this website and vote for my collection? If I win, I get free fabric!! :) My collection made the top ten, and I'd love to win it!! You'll be looking on the left hand side of the page for the voting tally box. You don't have to register or anything...just click on Wild Blueberry. Voting ends at 5pm EST on Friday, 11/30. They'll announce the winner on Saturday, December 1st! Fingers crossed.

Here's where you're going: Sew Lux Fabrics . You can also click on the picture above :)

My collection is called "Wild Blueberry"!!!
WILD BLUEBERRY

Big hugs and a thank you! :)

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Thank{ful}

Happy Thanksgiving! I hope yall are enjoying a safe, warm, and happy thanksgiving! It seems that every year, my list of things to be thankful for grows, as I'm sure yours does, as well.
rifle paper co.
via pinterest
I'm thankful for a warm, dry home with all the modern conveinces.
I'm thankful for my silly dog, who always loves me..even if she follows me around.
I'm thankful for food, lavish food or simple food. For the fact that we can feed our little family.
I'm thankful for work. For a part time job, for hopefully a full time job. For my husband's job that provides for us.
I'm thankful for being in South Carolina. For starting to feel at home.
I'm thankful for our church and the relationships that are beginning to grow there. Especially for sweet Claire and Chris who have reached out to us.
I'm thankful for family close by. It's so amazing to have both sets of grandparents close. I love being able to just visit with my mom for the day, or go up for the weekend.
I'm thankful for our military, especially those away from their families today. For keeping us safe, even when we don't fully realize how you're doing that. For preserving our right to eat turkey and live our day to day lives.
I'm thankful for my little brother and his leave time. It's wonderful to spend some time together.
I'm thankful for the world of blogging. For the times when it has been my connection to others. For the relationships and friendships that are beginning to develop because of it.
I'm thankful for learning to sew and quilt. At a time when I needed something, it has been that something for me. And now, my passion.
I'm thankful for my beautiful Reagan. Truly, being a mommy is the greatest blessing and joy of my life. Every day is a new adventure, and I love seeing her grow! I praise God for her continued health and her sweet self!
I'm thankful for my wonderful husband. Words cannot express how thankful I am for him, and his love for me and our daughter. I love you darling!
Pinned Image
I hope you all enjoy the wonderful holiday weekend!!! :) Happy Thanksgiving!
Pinned Image
via pinterest

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Lately

Hey yall! Lately, I've been listening to Christmas music. Shhhhh...don't tell my husband! He has a firm not-until-after-Thanksgiving rule. But that only applies when he's around. :) It's definitely not my fault that the Sirius radio has had the stations out for two weeks. They may even be programmed in on the car now. :)

Christmas music makes me happy. I don't care if it's July, November, or the day before Christmas. It always makes me happy. :) There is something so magical about the holidays. Which is one reason why I love Thanksgiving. It's the official kick off to the Christmas season. I love it! Mom and I usually watch the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade (and make all the guys watch it, too), and over the course of the weekend, some football and White Christmas.

This year, Mom and I are going fabric shopping over Thanksgiving weekend. One of the quilt stores in her town is closing (NOT going out of business, just retiring) so they are marking down everything. Sad for them but happy for me! I love fabric at a discount! To make room and to visual what my stash is looking like, I did yet another reorganization of my sewing space.
General overview. I moved the desk closer to the opening at this end (not by the door). It gives me more room with the rolly chair. 
I moved my new rotary mat over here to on top of the dog crate. I did have it sitting on the dining room table. You can see some sewing mail at the end, as well as my Tula quilt that I'm working on. Yes, I have several pairs of pants there. They all needed to be hemmed when I was taking pictures. Since only one pair fits well right now, I'm putting the others away until the next five come off... 
Back to only having a few things on the desk. I realized that too much on there was making it really difficult for me to focus on what I was sewing. But, still gotta have the laptop and cup of coffee. 

Below is what I am most proud of it. It's REALLY organized!!! And that, my friends, makes me happy. :)

On the top shelf, I have  (from left to right) my favorite patterns out, quilting in progress, miscellaneous projects in progress in the brown tote, and fabric (in cuts of more than 1 yard). 

On the middle shelf, I have (from left to right) fabric collections from Riley Blake and Violet Craft, my go to sewing books, my Kona charms, and quilting bee stuff in the cardboard box tray. 

On the bottom shelf, I have (from left to right), linings and interfacing in the box, fabric stash of less than 1 yard, and in the last box, scraps of solids. 

My prints and fashion scraps go under the desk. :)
Tadaaaa!! What do yall think? I still want to cover all the boxes to make them look pretty but for now, I'm quite happy with it. There's such a sense of zen... ya know?  I'm pretty sure that the dog and the baby thought I was nuts. Reagan actually "helped" some by playing with the scrap box. Future sewist/quilter on my hands? I certainly hope so! It's definitely helping me to refocus as I'm trying to whip out my sewing to do list before the end of the year.
I Love Kona Charm Swap at Pile O' Fabric
Oh, and goodies arrived in the mail yesterday. I participated in a fabric swap hosted by the lovely Alyssa at Pile O' Fabric. She's an incredible quilter, and so sweet. She did an amazing job of running the I Heart Kona Swap. She's done them before, so that's probably why she's so good at it. I might've been really excited to get this beauty in the mail yesterday.

In any event, hope yall are having a great week! :) Hoping to have a post up tomorrow.. we'll see how it goes!! :) Reagan's keeping me pretty busy!!!  Take care yall!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

My Weekender

Hey yall! :) Sorry I've been a little MIA the past few days... I had an interview on Thursday and that's kind of been on my mind. :) Fingers crossed because I'd really love to have that job!

Anyways, I told yall that I've been thinking about making an Amy Butler Weekender bag. Decided to do it. And did. :) The pattern has been around for a while now, and is considered by many many people in sewing/quilting/blogging circles to be one of the most difficult bags to make.
I've had the pattern for several months now...picked it up on sale. And honestly, I thought it'd sit in my patterns drawer for some time, maybe even years. But then, Lori at Lori H. Designs and Heidi at Fabric Mutt decided to do a Long Weekend Blog Hop to encourage all of us to make our own. I figured this was a good little prompt for me.

So, I bit the bullet and made one. And ... it ...wasn't...that...bad.

Here's my bag. :)


 I used Violet Craft's line, Road for my fabric. I did a quilt as you go method...sorta...for the exterior of the bag. Basically, I pieced together my panels and quilted each panel as a separate piece before assembling the bag. I used the now-popular method of quilting cotton, batting, and cotton duck to make the exterior panels. I didn't add any other interfacing. :) It definitely made this bag much easier to handle.

Some notes:
1. It's not that hard. Repeat after me it's not that hard.
2. I used store made piping. Two packages of it. That eliminated a whole bunch of time. When you have a 10 month old, time is important.
3. I also used store bought handles. Again, time. I also didn't make the handles extend all the way down the bottom of the large pockets. That's okay by me.
4. I added piping to the end smaller pockets. The pattern didn't call for it, but I think it looks more cohesive with the rest of the bag.
5. I didn't use the material suggested by the pattern for the bottom interfacing and the false bottom. Thank you, Pampers, for providing me with some cardboard.
6. The zipper is a pain. I used a 30 inch separating zipper and wish I hadn't. I should've used a smaller zipper, and a non-separating. I didn't like how the pattern had you install, and so mine is definitely not the best zipper install that I've done. Ehh. It's life.
7. Your bag will not be perfect. That's okay. :) None of us are. Just think of it as unique, with all it's little quirks. Just like me. :)
 Like a lot of other people, I had a hard time getting the end pockets to line up with the main panel pockets. Oh well. :)
 I used some pink heart ribbon for a zipper tag. I think it's fun.
 Here you can see my bag interior. I used lining fabric that I found at my local shop, Creative Sewing Machine Center. It's called Holly Holderman "Tattersal" by Lakehouse Dry Goods. It's an orange, pink, and white  print. It matched beautifully but still looked like a lining, ya know?
 See, the handles don't go all the way down to the bottom of the bag. I reinforced the stitching of the handles by making an X on the part that is hidden by the outside pocket.
I used straight line quilting for the exterior panels. This is more of a close up of the fabric and stitching. I quilted it using gutterman color no.22 (it's an off white color that matched my handles perfectly).

The biggest issue that I had with making this bag... hand sewing the lining. Thankfully, I watched some football with the hubs while doing that, so it did help. My fingers were hurting after it was in though.

Overall, I'm really pleased with this bag. Call me crazy, but I actually enjoyed making it. :) I'm already thinking about making another one. Not bad for my first bag.

This one is going to Reagan, as her day care bag. I know she'll need something everyday to carry all her essentials and food, etc. when she starts going to day care. This way, she'll have an extra special bag that Mommy made just for her.

Go here to see everyone else's FABULOUS weekender bags, and go here to see my Pinterest board with other gorgeous bags! :)

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

CraftyTammie

Good morning yall! Hope everyone is having a great week!

Today, I'm over at CraftyTammie participating in her Sew Full of Thanks series! :) Tammie is one of my favorite bloggers! She has lots of different crafty things...quilts, sewing, projects, and food! Be sure to head over there and check it out. She's doing some awesome giveaways, too!
Come back here tomorrow for a tutorial on how to make a softie turkey! :)

Food for thought for today:

Advice from a tree.
via pinterest
Take care yall!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Curated Collection Two

For my second entry into the Sew Lux Curated Collections mosaic fun....

I present Wild Blueberries! :) For some reason, this reminds me of late fall... I know technically we're getting into the holidays but this just really seems so fun and pretty.
Take care yall!

Curated Collection Mosicas 1

Good morning yall! Today, I'm joining in on a fun little contest for Sew Lux Fabrics. Each month, they have a Curated Collection of fabrics. They are having a guest curator for December, and we get to try to create a bundle! Actually, you can submit two entries, so I have two mosaics of fabric to show yall.

The first one I'm calling "Princess Autumn". If I were going to pick a bunch of fabrics for my daughter... these would be it. Feminine and strong, and perfectly appropriate for fall weather.
And just to play around some, since the collection would be for December, I had to go with the whole holiday thing. Except, I picked New Years for my holiday focus, and am calling this collection "Glittering in the New Year".

Anyways... since Quilt Market was a few weeks ago, pictures of all sorts of new fabrics are out, and I'm off course, drooling over several ones! I'll have a few favorites to share with yall later in the week! :)

And I just had to share this picture that popped up on my Facebook feed this morning. I'ts from the American Pregnancy Association but isn't it adorable? For all my quilty friends... anyone else love the idea of baby pictures on a quilt? Cute cute cute!!

Take care yall and have a great day!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Halfway Hustle

Hey yall! Taking care of business today. The Traveling Stash Giveaway Winner is.... drumroll please...
Comment #3 was Lori at Sew French!Congratulations! :) Please email me with your address and I'll get it out to you in the mail asap! By the way, she has a great blog! Yall should check it out!
Kelsey Sews
Today marks the halfway point for the 100 Day Hustle to the end of 2012. So, to celebrate and see where we are all at, Kelsey at Kelsey Sews is hosting a linky party ...

Here's my list:

1. Finish  my lemon bars quilt from Fresh Lemons
All blocks are completed and squared done. I've started piecing them together.
2. Finish my Tula Pink quilt
Quilting is halfway done... hoping to finish up today and tomorrow
3. Make a dress for a wedding we're attending in October
4. Reagan's Christmas dresses (probably 2, but maybe a 3rd one)
Christmas dress made (not blogged) and pants are started
5. Finish up our Christmas stockings 
6. Reagan's stacking rings for Christmas gift
Fabric picked out and ready to go. 
7. Reagan's quiet book for Christmas
hahahaha not even started yet. Yikes. In all honesty, this might get replaced by a different project, too. See...distracted sewist. 
8. Alphabet softies for Reagan's birthday
started picking out fabrics
9. Finish my white cardigan
10. Gray Burda dress Replacing this with the Weekender Bag
pattern picked out, fabric picked out and outside panels are pieced. Gotta pick up my interfacing on Friday and then I can work on finishing it up11. quilting bee blocks: Color Bee Nov, Color Bee Dec, Simply Modern ALL,  Creative Blocks Nov, Creative Blocks Dec.
12. last pillow for the living room
13. make 2 other garments for me
Made a black skirt (not blogged) and bought fabric for a Christmas dress (pattern picked out, just tracing)
14. Reagan's birthday dress and accessories
fabric selected, pattern picked out...working on tracing my pattern pieces
15. one other project (it's a surprise)
Making really good progress on this one. 
16. Megan Nielsen's Banskia Top for the sewalong
17. chalkboard frame project
Honestly, not sure if this one'll get done since I decided to add something else. Maybe I can just replace this one??? 
17.  Make Christmas stocking holders. 
18. re arrange kitchen cabinets (aka Reagan proofing)
Started. Need to get the safely locks for them. 
19. (NEW) Thanksgiving Outfit for Reagan
fabric selected, pattern selected..working on tracing my pattern pieces

Not bad. I'm getting there. You can go HERE and HERE to read my previous posts about the Hustle. Six of them are completely done... several others are almost done... Hmm... I gotta get working.

Here's my plan of action:
Trace patterns over the weekend (if I'm lucky)
Monday--finish up Tula Pink Quilt
Wednesday/Thursday--Reagan's Thanksgiving outfit
Friday/Saturday/Sunday--weekender bag
(in between, work on Reagan's alphabet blocks and small projects)

What do yall think? I'm personally kind of setting Christmas as my goal since a lot of these are more Christmas related... 

How's everyone else's sewing coming along? Hard to believe how quickly this year is moving by!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Blissful & Domestic

Hey yall! Today, I'm guest posting over at one of my favorite blogs, Blissful and Domestic. Danielle was kind enough to let me share about a great way to take your favorite doilies and turn them into a little Thanksgiving fun! :)
Blissful and Domestic
So head on over there, and check it out! Take care, yall!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Traveling Stash

Hey yall! Last week, I found out that I won the Two Sisters Traveling Stash from Kelsey Sews! I was uber excited since I've been following it online for a little while. I love love LOVE the idea of it. How cool is it to send a box around... a box filled with little goodies for quilty friends all over the country.

My box arrived yesterday afternoon, and I had so much fun delving in to all the goodies in it. I had such a hard time picking out which ones to keep.
Look at all those fabrics. Some fabrics are fat quarters, others half yards, and there were two yardage bolts, too. I admit, I read through the book, Quilting for Peace, but decided to pass it along. Got some great information from it.

Here's what I took from the Traveling Stash. I'm a sucker for modern prints and bright colors. Plus, these will help fill some holes in my bee blocks.

Here's what I put into the Traveling Stash Box:
Want to get in on the fun?

Here's how to win the Traveling Stash box:
1.) Due to quick turn around times, you must live in the U.S.
2.) Must be an active blogger
3.) Must be willing to replace what you take out with similar quality/quantity of items

That's it! If you want to put your name in, here's what you can do... Leave a comment telling me your favorite Thanksgiving tradition. For an extra entry, become a follower of my blog!

I'll use Mr. Random to draw a name on Friday, and will announce the winner then! The giveaway will remain open until 8:00 am on Friday morning.

Good luck, yall!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Simply Modern Bee

Hey yall! Happy Friday! :)

Yesterday, I might've gone a little overboard. I worked on the quilt blocks for one of my bees. And well, ummmm, I might've done them all.

See, everyone's making the same block, and already chose their colors.  I thought I'd get a head start, and then my head start turned into a let's see how many I can get done today. The block we're making is super simple.. I think I shared about it before, but you can see it here. Everyone in the bee is using Kona White for the rails, just to make it easier for everyone else. Here they are...

November:
Micchia requested orange & light/blue aqua
Simply Color is the Center Block and the Orange Dots is by Michael Miller
 Sewneatbycaryn requested purple & green (olive ish green)
Green center block is by Simply Color and the Polka Dots are from the Dumb Dot line by Michael Miller
December:
Fresh Raspberry Quilts requested yellow & gray
Center is Michael Miller Dot and the outside is a yellow FQ from my LQS
Vbobro requested blues
Center block is from Simply Color and the outside is from Violet Craft Madrona Road "Haystacks"
January:
k9ToyWear requested red & aqua
Center square is from Simply Color and outside is from a Christmas collection FQ
Swedish Fishie requested red & aqua
Center square is from Simpy Color and the red is from a Christmas FQ
February:I requested purples
Amplifiedtorock requested purple & green
March:
Fushigi88 requested blue & green (sea glass)
Center block is from Simply Color and the outside is from Riley Blake
Quilty Girl 2 requested raspberry & lime
Center block is from Simply Color and the outside is from a FQ at my LQS that matched perfectly!
April:
Suzanneg303 requested blue & red (Americana but with all patterns)
Center block is from Sarah Jane's Out to Sea and the outside is from a Christmas FQ
Quilting & Cussing requested navy & orange (somewhat nautical)
The anchors are from Sarah Jane's Out to Sea (it's a navy blue) and the center block is also Simply Color. I LOVE how the anchors face out from the center block, no matter which way you turn it! 
I used lots of my favorites for these blocks. The majority have center squares from the Simply Color line (I used my charm pack and cut them down) but I think three don't. I was really amazed at how quickly these blocks came together. I really hope my bee friends like them!

Just to let yall know... I used the same red for my three friends who requested red. I think it's actually from a Christmas line (maybe Kate Spain???) but I'm not sure. I picked it up at my LQS in their fat quarter section and it didn't have selvage information on it. Figures I would get the one that didn't have the printed side. Sorry! It's so cute and cheery that I had to use it for yall.

Here are three of my blocks. I went ahead and made three so that way I'd have 14 blocks total. While I requested purples from my bee friends, I used some gray, white, and black in mine. I'll be tying in those colors throughout the quilt and thought they would complement nicely.
Center block is Pinhead Black by Michael Miller and the outside purple is Good Morning Positively Purple Honeycombs by Me and My Sister for Moda Fabrics
Center block is from simply Color and the polka dots are (surprise!) Michael Miller
Center is a gray print from Simply Color and the outside is the same grape purple dot from Michael Miller as the very first block at the top of this post! For some reason, the color is really off in this picture!
Sorry for the icky phone pictures. I had taken some on my good camera but that's all packed up at the moment. And I was too impatient to get this post up!

That's all for today, yall! Take care!
OH--don't forget... you can go nominate (CLICK HERE) for the Blogger's Quilt Festival. My quilt is number #482... and it'd be a great fit for the two color quilt category. Just saying... :) In any event, you should go just to look at some of the amazing quilts that are entered! There are over 500 quilts! WOW!

I'd suggest writing down the categories on a post it next to you while you drool over browse the quilts. That way, when one hits you, you can write down it's number and don't have to keep checking back. It makes the nomination process go much much more smoothly! :) Have fun!
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