Thursday, March 05, 2015

#stopdropmakeablock

Good morning friends!  How is your week going? We're on the downhill slide now.  Today will go quick, midday I have to head over to SFO and pick up Bret from the airport.  He's been on a not-so-whirlwind business trip that has been nothing but delayed and cancelled flights, staying over midway to a secondary location without luggage.. you name it.  Today they're talking about snow.. hope he gets home. Still too early to tell.

Greek Cross Block
 
Today's topic.. do you ever get in a slump?  Maybe slump isn't the right word,  I want to sew, I just don't know what I want to make.  I see tons of great projects on social media and they're all inspiring, but maybe it's too inspiring.  I'm at the project buffet and there's too many choices to decide. Yesterday I decided that I'd just stop worrying about a project and make a block.  I stopped what I was doing, went to my Around the Block book and picked a block I was interested in making.  (The link is to the 501 Rotary Cut Blocks as it's the compilation of all three of Judy's books.) For a long time I've wanted to make a Greek Cross block, a couple of years ago it was kind of a big deal  and a lot of people were making Greek Cross Quilts (see a ton of images here).  There are lots of options with this block, those corners are perfect for making a secondary pattern alone or with sashing.

Greek Cross Block
 
I tried some pressing methods I  normally don't use, and I got a nice flat block.  I'm not saying I'm a total open seam convert, I'm too old school for that, but I'm not going to lie, it made a difference.  It did take longer than pressing to the dark side, which is my normal method, but enjoyment was part of my goal, and I have to say it was a great exercise. And with a simple block like this it was quick.  And from there I went on to cut out some other blocks that need stitching up for another project and it got me back on the move.

Greek Cross Block
 
So.. in the end I thought it was a fun exercise.  What it reminded me of was those #stopdropselfie challenges people make on instagram, so I'm calling it my #stopdropmakeablock challenge, which is one heck of a long hashtag but a fun idea.  Or maybe it's a lame idea, at this point who knows.  But if you want to try it, make a block and tag me and use the #stopdropmakeablock hashtag.  It could be instagram or facebook, and if you don't have either but you want to share, email me a picture of your block and I'll post it for you! 
 
Ok, better get some more coffee and get busy! Have a super day!
 

Wednesday, March 04, 2015

Wednesday

Hi there my sweet friends, good morning!  It's a great morning too!  Super excited to share my find with you!  I was out in the back doodling around and noticed some little birds swooping in under the eaves.  I have a lot of 'regulars' around the back yard that come in close, my hummingbirds still come to the feeder, although they nest elsewhere, a lovely pair of Black Phoebes that flit around  and often hang off the planter baskets, so it wasn't a surprise to have birds zooming in and out.


backyard nest
 
What did surprise me was discovering this nest!  It's right outside the sliding door to our bedroom, and we come and go through that door a lot with Peep. It's at eye level even!  But they don't care! 

backyard nest
 
The  little birds go deep into that sock like nest and you can see it shaking when they fly in.  They're still building, I see them coming in bringing little flower petals and other stuff. Who knows what it is.


backyard nest
 
This is the backside of it, the 'door' faces out, away from our door.

backyard nest
 
I sat in my swing and used my zoom to get some pictures of the birds. Just not quite sure what they are yet.  I had my bird books out yesterday watching, getting pictures, and trying to decide definitively. I'll let you know when I figure it out. Or maybe someone here will know.

backyard nest
 
They're very small, and they are fast. Soon my pink lemonade honeysuckle will be leafed out and they'll be hidden away. Now I just need to discourage that blue jay that keeps coming around.  That bird is a ruiner for sure.

backyard nest
 
So anyway, sometimes life just holds an embarrassment of riches and you don't even realize it. 
 
Ok, today I'm out and about, and then I 'll be back, and out back watching.  Maybe I'll even pull a few weeds while I'm at it.  What's on your agenda?

Monday, March 02, 2015

Monday!

Good morning! Did you have a good weekend?  We had a nice one, especially the part where we celebrated mom's 90th birthday!  Can you imagine the changes in the world in those 90 years?  No wonder it's hard to work the cable remote sometimes!

coffee
 
 I spent some time looking for that darn ham again, but after a while just got over. (for now) Those hams aren't that expensive. Tamping down that desire to hunt was tough. I'm working on getting some projects together to take on my retreat.  I'll probably have too many thinking I'm Carrie but really I'm just me, easily distracted in a crowd. We'll see what happens I guess.. at least I know I have enough to keep me busy.  Anyway it's still over a week away, no rush.   I'm still cutting for my Flower Box quilt. 
 
Anyway, nice weekend over all. We had rain and we had sun and even a BBQ.  I'm hoping for more rain but the sunny breaks are nice.  This is another busy week! Hope you guys are doing well! I appreciate that you stop by to have coffee with me! Tell me what's new. xop
 
 

Friday, February 27, 2015

TGIF

HAPPY FRIDAY FRIENDS!  Did you have a good week?  Big weekend plans?  I had a fun and busy week. The weather was wonderful and it's hard not to feel happy when the sun is shining! 

lunch
 
Also easy to feel happy when you get to have lunch with friends!  Debbie Taylor was in California visiting her family and Holly and I met up for lunch with her in San Anselmo.  (picture courtesy of Debbie)  It was great to meet up outside of the Quilt Market setting and get a chance to relax and have a good visit.   Thanks for meeting up with us Debbie.
 
Ok peeps, I have a question.  I am going on a 4 day quilt retreat and I want to pick up a travel iron to bring with me.  Do you have any favorites?  I'd love to hear your recommendations.  
 
Hope you guys have a super weekend!  xo

Monday, February 23, 2015

Hello Monday

Good morning and happy Monday!  Did you guys have a great weekend? We had a nice sunshiney weekend here, always a treat.  I didn't get a chance to sew, how about you? 

 
Take 5 Fat Quarters by Kathy Brown
 
Today I'm happy to announce the winner of the e-book is Jan R who said "Love your rendition of this pattern. Great colors and the design is so cheery. Thanks for a chance to win an e copy of this new book."  Ok Jan, email me at rocketqltr at yahoo dot com!
 
Ok everybody, have a good week! xo

Friday, February 20, 2015

TGIF

Hi and happy Friday friends!  How did your week go?  I got plenty of sewing and sewing prep done, so I'm feeling pretty good about the week! 
 
Of course by now this is old news but Kristyne came out with a new pattern called the Pamela Pouch!  And guess what! It's named after me!  For some beautifully styled photos head over and see all of hers.  So lovely!  I've got some decidedly non-glamorous photos but PEOPLE I MADE ONE!  Kristyne asked me if I'd test out the pattern and of course I said sure!

pamela pouch
 
I can't get over how easy it was.  This is my first bag, more to come for sure.  I used a combo of Pam Kitty Garden and the text print from Holly's  Sausalito Cottage that coordinates  perfectly with it. 

pamela pouch
 
You may have seen over on Facebook that I was in search of my pressing ham.  I  haven't found it yet, so this is still in need of some serious pressing.  But even partially pressed it looks pretty good.  I haven't added any details like Kristyne's little bow, but I think it's  pretty darn cute. Even the inside binding, which seemed so intimidating, was pretty easy!  Honestly!   You can click over here and order the pattern for yourself, and be sure to visit Kristyne's blog to see the cute bags she made!

pamela pouch
 
Ok, hope you're keeping warm if you live on the East Coast!  Holy cow!  The weather is just nuts. Happy weekend where ever you are! xo 

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Sewing along with friends

On Sunday Lori started her Flower Patch Quilt Along over on her blog and on Instagram.  Are you following along?  I've seen some cute blocks already and it's very tempting. 

garden1
 
I managed to get all my text oriented in the same direction.  No idea if I would try and keep the text going all the same way on a quilt.  That might be more than my brain can handle at any one time.  Plus I think it would limit you on placement if you couldn't turn you block.  Well that's something for FuturePam to worry about.

garden2

I really love the blocks though. 

garden3
 
 Are you going to sew along? I'm still in the thinking phases, but I really love the look! What are you working on? How's the week going?  Tell all!

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Take 5 Fat Quarters

Good Morning!  Today is my day on Kathy Brown's Take 5 Fat Quarters blog hop!  Kathy and I have been friends for a long time and I'm thrilled to participate.  This is Kathy's 6th book with Martingale and it's really a great book. From the first look through the pages I knew it was a great book for quilters, right off I saw projects I wanted to make, and great for shops because it's a perfect book for classes and kits.  And wouldn't it be fun to take the book and a kit and head off to sew days with friends!

Take 5 Fat Quarters by Kathy Brown
 
On of my favorite things about Kathy's books is the introduction of each quilt and the inspiration behind it.  When I saw Swimming the Side Stroke I loved it, but it was really the story behind it that sold me.  She was inspired by the colorful swimsuits of her youth and right away I was transported to my own childhood!

SUMMER
Itty Bitty Pam Kitty 1957 somewhere in California

Pam Kitty Garden

 Picking the fabrics.. quick and easy!
 

Take5 preparation

Clear concise cutting instructions. In no time you're ready to stitch!
 
Swimming the sidestroke blocks
 
The blocks go together so fast, and the next thing you know you have a quilt.
 
 
Take 5 Swimming the Sidestroke
 
Take 5 Swimming the Sidestroke
 
Darla quilted this quilt in an over all bubbles pattern that seemed perfect for it.  I love how it turned out, so colorful and cheerful! 
 
Take 5 Fat Quarters is a great book!  If you'd like a chance to win an e-copy of this book leave a comment here and I'll pick a winner at the end of the week!  You can also head over to Kathy's blog and leave a comment there, and follow along on the tour for even more chances to win!   Here's the list of participants:
Tuesday-Gail Pan
Wednesday- ME!
Friday-Jody Sanders
 
Thanks to Kathy for inviting me along on the hop and to Martingale for providing me with a digital copy of the book ! 
 
 

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Droning on

Good morning!  Did you see all the cute single wedding ring blocks yesterday! I have to confess, Greg's just blew me away, his quilt turned out so awesome. You can head over to the Jolly Jabber, they have a fun free pattern for the block,  it's part of their Classic and Vintage series.   I got busy making a block right away just for the fun of it. 

single wedding ring
 
I made my triangles bigger and trimmed down, I'm a little disappointed in how  wrinkly it looks. I even tried pressing my seams open on the rows.  I guess I'm still in search of that illusive picture perfect block I see Greg and so many people making.  This block is starched within an inch of it's life.. all I can think is steam is my enemy. My problems all start when I join the pieces. Stitched into a quilt, quilted and laundered it's fine, so I'm not losing any sleep over it.

drone
 
In weird neighborhood news, Sunday we saw a drone flying around, you can see that spec by the palm tree on the left.  It was all around that side of the street and towards the back of those houses.  Bret and I really got going on some conspiracy theories while we watched it and I tried a thousand times to get the pictures.  We watch a lot of crazy TV.

drone
 
Turns out it was a neighbor flying his new drone for fun.  After all the theories it was almost a disappointment, but it was good for a laugh.  I've lived in this neighborhood over thirty years, as far as I know it's really not all that exciting.  Maybe if I had a drone I'd know otherwise!
 
That's it for today! Hope you're having fun!

Monday, February 16, 2015

Monday

Hello Monday! It's fun starting the week with a holiday, it means my people are home for a bonus day and that's always a treat!

coffee
 
The weather has been perfect here these past few days.  Kind of a mixed blessing for sure, I love the nice sunny weather, not too hot and everything seems springy and green.  Unfortunately, it also means no rain.  I'm thinking about all the people with the horrible below zero winter weather on the other side of the country.. I don't know how you manage that!
 
 
Time to pick winners for the Cosmo Floss:
 
Miss Sherry who said "Woo.. would be so awesome to win! Thanks for the opportunity!"
 
Michelle who said "Those packets of floss look so cute! I would love to try a new kind of floss!"
 
Junebug who said "I would love to try Cosmo floss. I will have to be on the look out for it. Two days til retirement so I will have more time for fun projects!! Yippee!!"
 
Jeannine who said "So cute! Thanks for a chance! I have a cute little embroidery bag on my to do list...this would make a great companion!!"
 
Ladies please email me with your address so I can get these delicious packets in the mail to you! (rocketqltr at yahoo dot com)
 
Now, all you people heading to Austin for QuiltCon, have a great time, and keep those pictures coming on Instagram! 

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Snapshots Month 2!

Sew On and Sew On is  this month's Snapshots Quilt Block!  Such a cute sewing machine block.  Just in case you haven't heard about the Snapshots Quilt, you can click over here and read all about it over on the Fat Quarter Shop Blog Jolly  Jabber!   We're capturing life's  happy moments quilt style and I hope you'll want to stitch along with  us.  The pattern is free, but we hope you'll donate $5 a pattern download towards the St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital.  Here's my block!

Snapshots Month2
 
I really had fun picking out fabrics from my Pam Kitty Garden collection, with a snippet of gray gingham from Pam Kitty Love.  I saw some great looking cakes in Pam Kitty Garden, including a whole quilt of cakes by Erica.  YUMMY!

Snapshots Month2
 
I loved the fussy cutting on the Fat Quarter Shop sewing machine, so I did some fussy cutting myself,  look at these big flower buttons! 

Snapshots Month2
 
This just happens to be Bonnie's favorite block, and you can hear her story and  catch some instruction on the video here.  Then download your pattern and get GO SEW! 
 
Ok, that's it for now! Happy Sunday! Happy Snapshots Day! xo
 

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Thursday

Hi there!  I found myself on an archaeological dig in my sewing room yesterday and discovered some forgotten plunder from Quilt Market! My friend Keiko was at market, and she wanted to come by and say hi and introduce me to Minori Ikeda.  Minori is with Lecien and is the authority on Cosmo Threads!  The threads are lovely to work with and there is a rich palette of colors to choose from.  I know my favorite cross stitching duo Amanda and Ashleigh of the Frosted Pumpkin  use Cosmo floss as does the amazing Meg of Crabapple Hill who I think is pretty much legendary for her beautiful embroidered quilts. 

Keiko Clark and Minori Ikeda
Keiko  and Minori

It was great to meet Minori.  Keiko translated for her as her English was limited but I could tell she was catching on fast.  I look forward to seeing her.


Cosmo Thread

Minori generously gave me some floss bundles to share with my blog readers and that's what I found yesterday!   If you'd like a chance to win one of these bundles leave a comment and I'll pick a winner next week! 
 
Ok, see you back here on Sunday, it's Snapshots day!  xo

Monday, February 09, 2015

Monday

Good morning!  How was your weekend?  We tried to keep it cozy here, we've had a ton of rain, much needed of course, and it was perfect hang out and be cozy weather.  The temps were so balmy we could have the windows open to get some much needed fresh air inside. 

cozy coffee
 
What did you do this past weekend?  Anything fun?   Tell me all about it! Was it sewing, was it fun?  Can't wait to hear about it!  xo

Thursday, February 05, 2015

Pretty Things

Hi there friends! How are you?  Chilly here in Pam Kitty Village, well inside anyway, some days it seems like I live in an ice palace.  I just can't get this place warmed up.  It's been quite nice outside though, high 60s, low 70s. Seems pretty weird when the news  (and instagram) is filled with snow day photos and  I need to water my lawn.  And don't get me started on the weeds. As my cousin Linda might say, that's the price you pay for living in paradise.  Year round yard work
 
Pam Kitty Garden Bib
 
But instead of doing yard work, I've been working on quite a few things, some I can't show, but some of course that I can.  I was lucky to get one of Amy's books when she first offered up some advanced copies for sale.  I really wanted it just to look at the pictures, I didn't care if I made a single thing out of it, it's just that cute.  She has a lovely way of staging a photograph, and then the photograph itself is perfection.  I wrote about 20 sentences here but they all sound kind of weird borderline stalkerish, so I'll just say it's a great book and leave it at that. 
 
ANYWAY I'm not too far on the bib, I love the shape and the little ruffle. Amy has a lot of cute bib tutorials over on her blog, just check along the left side bar. The latest Quilts and More has her cute little chick potholders in the Scrap Lab. Until the book comes out there's plenty of chances to find something totally Amy to make.  
 
Ok you guys have a great rest of the week and a happy weekend! xo
 
 


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