Gettin’ $H)T Done Day! (1/12)

I took today off to get some shit done.  Specifically, cleaning out my closet.  Old houses have swings and roundabouts.  One of the greatest things about my old house is my GIANT attic-y closet just off the upstairs bath.  All mine and all giant.  Which means I crammed stuff in there.  Do you remember this?

I had a dresser that kept getting pushed farther and farther forward by the crap I didn’t want to deal with.  It was the one unfun thing I was going to do – clean out that closet – during my sabbatical.  But it didn’t happen.  Sewing and not doing that were too much fun.  So I womanned up, took a day off and conquered it.  So not fun.  And a bunch of bags to go to charity.  But done.  My closet isn’t decorated – I might put in a rug and some other decorate-y stuff at some point.  For now, I know my morning tomorrow is going to be so much better without a pile of mess peeking out.  Woot.

Here are the results (I still need to vacuum -ignore the carpet)…

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Pretty little boxes all lined up…

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Table of girly things I love and photographs…

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Pretty scarves…

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Pretty necklaces…IMG_1221

In a month there will be another day of getting shit done… probably attack the scary table linen boxes.  But this closet is by far the hardest thing I had to tackle.  And it’s done.  🙂 🙂


Moving things around…

Hello !  Happy 2014 !!!  Bet you are expecting a blog post with a bunch of resolutions ??  Well, not this year.  There are things I need to work on and have been working on and will continue to work on – but now see it is an evolution and not an on/off switch.

This is more of an administrative post.  I have been having so much fun quilting (and blogging about quilting) that I am creating a new blog to focus on that here:  If you are interested in my quilting exploits, please add this blog to your reading schedule or your RSS feed.  Please?  Also, if you wouldn’t mind pinning or tweeting or facebooking some of my posts there so I can build my quilt blogger brand, that would be off the hizzle.  What about if I promise never to use the word “brand” or “hizzle” again?  I am hoping in the next 30-40 years of becoming a professional quilt blogger, so your help is appreciated.  🙂

This blog remains, and I am going to commit to at least one post per week about what is going on with me – good ol’ oversharing and whinging.  So, yay.

As always, you can find me @GHRN on twitter

Pillow 3: Urban Dresden

Another tutorial from Missouri Quilt Co:

And I decided I wanted to make a dresden plate.  I made a couple coasters for my mom with a 1/4 dresden pattern.  Then made this giant dresden  that I am not sure what I am going to use it for (anybody need a soft color pillow or table runner?):



I thought I was dresden plated out for a while, and then I started struggling with the Jay McCarroll Center City Miami Midtown fabric that I thought I loved when I bought it at Urban Arts and Crafts (which suddenly has awesome huge selection of fabric, including precuts).  I tried several designs and the fabric just looked icky.  So, out of desperation I tried a dresden plate.  The combination of the oldie-timey pattern and the uber modern fabric just sort of worked all of a sudden.  I think part of it is that the fabric just looked better cut up smaller – and the pattern makes it look like more patchwork then it is.  I quartered the plate to make it look a bit more modern.

All of my quilting projects have become so much white noise with DH and the kids.  But this one turned out so well that even the kids noticed and said how good it looked.  So, yay.  I now have hit the maximum number of decorative pillows I am allowed per family law.  So this may be the last pillow for a bit.  🙂

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Pillow 2: Favorite Book Napping Pillow

Sarah’s Fabrics drew me to Lawrence, KS at least once a week when I was on my sabbatical.  It is a great store – full of very on-trend and fun fabrics.  My husband is always willing to drive me – which makes it a much more pleasant trip.  We get lunch at Free State, stop by Brits, and sometimes The Raven.  We aren’t big shoppers, so we target these stores and then head home full of good food and a little to a lot of fabric.  The last time we went to Lawrence I picked up a great tea towel from The Raven, featuring a print of the cover of one of my favorite books – Carry On, Jeeves by P.G. Wodehouse.  

And so it became a pillow.  And by far one of the cheapest, as the tea towel was only $5!  I backed it with a soft fabric so that it doubles as a napping pillow for our new spacious couch.

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Pillow 1: Big Chevrons

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I think I may be done with 1/2-square triangles for a while.  I use the method demonstrated here:

I do love the look, but even with the easy method there is a lot of ironing and squaring up.  I have now made chevrons two ways.  Modern quilting trend completed.

Living Room!!

What I will remember most about fall and winter 2013, is waiting for our new couches.  The monday before the monday before Christmas they arrived.  And joy!  I skipped the merriment of the pre-holiday season, buckled down at my sewing machine and made pillows.  But the living room is done now… I LOVE it… gone are our uncomfortable and spring sprung couches and we have a new VERY functional couch, and have transitioned from country transitional to modern transitional.  Love, love, love.  And so some house-proud photos (the cracks in the plaster edited out 🙂 ):

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That is the living room looking pristine.  But the absolute best part is how much easier it is to hang out with each other.  This old house is more than a bit decrepit, drafty, and sometimes a hassle and a half.  But I think all the kids will remember about her is the fun and the love.

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Kicking the football…

This is a poor-me post, fair warning…

Last year, I made booties for A, my sister-in-laws soon-to-be-born baby.  They were not received in the way I was expecting, to say the least.  I thought I had learned my lesson.  And then I started working on a Project Linus quilt from the scraps of this bed quilt:



And it ended up taking a looooong time and being so adorable that I chose to keep it in the family:

Sweet fabrics, including the last bits of some of my favorite greys…



Mostly Amy Butler, but also some Anna Maria Horner, Michael Miller, a soupcon of Riley Blake… gorgeous, beautiful color…



Awesome scrappy binding…


And I learned how to use my Fons and Porter binding tool, so even the binding was gorgeous.  Truly one of the better quilts I have done in design and execution.


And so I gave it to A – I (tried to) kick that football once again.  With better results.  So, yay quilt.  And yay pretty handmade things staying in the family.


Dinosaurs and Gas Giants

A completed project, an in-progress one…

Dinosaur hot pads for a friend who loves dinosaurs… these were crazy fun to make.  All out of existing fabric I have.    And I got to practice my machine applique technique on my machine on their ferocious teeth and claws.  Rawwrrrr!!



And this is an in-progress quilt for my parents’ dog.  She hangs a lot at the science store, so a cuddly science quilt seems like the thing.  And all fabrics I already have (my mom gave me lots of the planet fabric), so if she wants to use it as a chew toy instead of a blanket, that will be ok.  This is my goal to finish for January, before moving onto Project Linus quilts.


Going Negative!

I do not like negative space.  I like floral patterns.  And lots of colors.  Saturated, bright colors.  I can appreciate modern quilts for their simple beauty, but I am not sure I could ever make one.  For example, the hexagon quilt – made from a pattern, I used a bright pink for my negative space – just to keep me interested.  And then I made a hexagon quilt of my own design for a friend’s baby.  And wow.  Lots and lots and lots of color and print.  No negative space.  And I loved it – Although not exactly an easy pattern, I zipped through it, because every day I was glad to see it.
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But when I confronted making a quilt for another couple’s pending baby, I had to back off pattern-craziness.  And use negative space.  And I really enjoyed working on it, and fell in love with the grey fabric I was using. And I really love the results.
The negative space print is Eclectic Essentials – Dictionary.  The fabric has dictionary pages with words important to young families – like travel, tree, time, forgive, and flourish.  I LOVE IT.  I wish I could buy 50 yards so I would always have it for projects. And it was the perfect juxtaposition to the bright camping-theme fabric used in the strips and chevrons.  Modern, fresh, and with negative space to make those colors pop.
So I am now working on two more projects with negative space.  And lots of eye-popping color.  Woot.