Monday, August 30, 2010

Featured Giveaway!!

There's some exciting stuff going on...
My cousin Kelle is hosting a giveaway over at her blog- Enjoying the Small Things, and the prize is one of my custom-made Petal Knot dresses! All you have to do to enter is go to her blog by clicking here and leave a comment! You will be entered to win the dress! So, please, go visit her AMAZING blog, browse through her pictures, read her beautiful and inspiring posts... and don't forget to leave a comment!!!

If you win, I'll get in contact with you and we'll talk about colors, size and all the fun little details!

So, please, go enter!

Stay tuned for another GIVEAWAY in the near future (very near), because my 100th post is coming up (yay) and I want it to be a good one :)

Good Luck....

Friday, August 27, 2010

Staging and Such...

You should have seen me today... oh man.
I was trying to put this stupid crib together by myself, outside, in my front yard so I could get some new pics for my Etsy Shop.
It was a mess.
When the directions say you need a wrench, a screwdriver and another person... they're not kidding.
2 people is a must.
Especially when you're trying to put it together without one of its sides... one of my (many) brilliant ideas of the day.

And, of course, there happened to be a garage sale going on directly across the street so everyone could see my ridiculousness.
Wearing what I wore to bed, mascara eyes, bed-head and all.
Why do I do these things? I don't know.
If I were me (and I am), I would just sit and shake my head at myself (which I do).

Not only that, but I got the bright idea to drag this thing out of the garage, haul it out on the lawn, and attempt an assembly at the tail-end of Willow's nap.
Needless to say, I was hurrying faster than the speed of light to complete my mission on time.
And, in 80 degree-bright-morning sun, that makes for one sweaty, gross looking me.
So, once I finally got it all set up and put the bedding on, ready for pictures...
Garage-salers came over to admire and ask questions and I even handed out a few business cards.
Like, over.
To my lawn.
Why is this a problem you might ask?

Remember how I looked?
Yeah... freaking gross!
And sweaty.
It was bad.
It was embarrassing.
How are you supposed to promote your work when you look like something that just crawled out of the Black Lagoon?
Don't ask me... I have no clue.
I tried to cover myself up at first, but a Nikon D40 doesn't really hide much... surprise.
I probably even had dried drool on my face. Who knows.
In all honesty, there really wasn't much I could do.
I just pretended like nothing was wrong.
Hopefully that worked.
We'll see.
If any of the above mentioned garage-salers and stoppers by are reading this, thank you.
And I apologize for my appearance, I don't always look like that.
I groom. And shower. On a regular basis.
And you must be good people because you're here, despite the fact that I looked like a homeless creature.
You rock.

Oh, and this is my latest nursery set.

Mostly Amy Butler prints: Water Bouquet, Park Fountains, Sun Spots, and then some Natural Elements in Hot Pink for the sheet and a little Erin McMorris Floral Swirl in Lime thrown in to the quilt for some variety.
Strip quilt with a pieced back. Machine quilted 1/4" from each seam. Machine stitched binding. Measures 40x58" (I really measured this time).
And now, it's on its way to Dallas, TX!

I couldn't decide which pic looked best... so I ended up using the last one, a collage, for my shop.

Yay, on to the next project!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Welcome to the Family!!

My hubby's big brother Graham got married on Friday!
Don't they make a gorgeous couple??
The new wifey is Michelle... amazing. She's like Martha Stewart.
She makes amazing things.
And she's just amazing.
For example: Super Bowl Sunday, she made a cake that looked like the football field.
Complete with players and yard markers and everything.
She even had Troy Palomalu's hair.
It was amazing.

Here's the couple's first dance as man and wife.
I know it's not the most amazing quality for a picture... but for some reason I just love it.
I feel like it's the kind of photo that some kid or grandkid will come across in some tucked away box and secretly keep it... then ask questions later, or make up their own story for it.
You didn't hoard random photographs as a child?
Weird, I did.

My hubby was the best man.
His speech was awesome.
He told everyone I was hot.
He did.
With a microphone.
In his speech.
I felt pretty hot.
Doesn't he look handsome?
Well, now I have to come clean.
It didn't really go like that.
He said something like, "Graham has taught me many things about love and he's been a great mentor, etc."
Then he said, " But I taught him the most important thing in life: how to find a hot wife!"
(Insert uproarious laughter and applause)
All I heard was, "Blahbedeblah blah... I have a hot wife."

Here's our lovely two-year-old in a handmade dress because we got back from vacation (read 17 hour car ride) at about 9 o'clock the morning of the wedding and Mommy (me) didn't plan that well and get a dress for Willow before she left for 10 days and then couldn't find ANYthing at ANY store that didn't look like a cheap polyester cupcake threw up on a rack of clothes.
So, behold, Willow's dress.
It was great seeing so many family members that we should see way more often.
Really, we live so close.
Here's my hubby's cousin, Dahna, and me trying to appear sexy.
I just look like I'm sucking on a lemon while trying to smile.
Good times.

Me and the bride... we have the same last name now :)
I'm so glad you're part of the family Michelle!
You are beautiful and fantastic and wonderful in so many ways!
I just want everyone to know how beautiful my mother-in-law, Karen, looked that night.
She was stunning.
She's a very pretty lady.
I love how her hair matches her dress... so fun.
This is my brother-in-law Bud (aka Tyler- his real name) and Karen.
This family is full of lookers, lemme tell 'ya.
(Bud, you looked very handsome as well)

And here's Karen and Graham dancing together:

And I think this is one of my favorite pics of the night.
My lovey trying to give me a kiss with her big ol' fish lips.
She's the best.

The very handsome groomsmen: Aaron, Matt, and my hubs.

And here's my little cutie... last one on the dance floor.
We shut the place down.
Really, we were the last to leave.
That's how we roll.

And just in case you're wondering why I don't have any pictures of the actual ceremony it's because my daughter decided to start yelling "I want my Daddy, I want my Daddy" louder and louder and louder as he walked down the aisle to his best man spot, so I had to hightail it (and her) out of earshot in a quick hurry.
Not that easy to hightail it anywhere while holding a screaming two-year-old.
It's much, much harder in heels and a dress while you're trying to keep your hair and makeup looking somewhat decent when it's at least 75 degrees outside.
It's also very hard to get "out of earshot" when the ceremony is also outside...
basically, there's no such thing.
So I tried to keep Willow occupied out on the golf course (probably against the rules) while keeping her from getting hit by (probably drunk) golfers in super-fast golf carts.
That's why there's no pics of the ceremony.
But I heard it was beautiful :)

I have to go.
I can't ignore my screaming child any longer.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Some Zigs and Some Zags

I'm baa-aaack!
(This is one of the only picture of my hubby and I together during our whole vacation... so deal.
I'm not happy about it either...)

And vacation was really, REALLY awesome.
There's so much to say that I won't even start.
It was fantastic.
But, more on the vacation later. A lot happened.
For example:

Rain, flooding, Tropical Depression 5, a Level 4 sprain, more rain...

capture of the Flint Serial Stabber (who I nicknamed the Fillet 'o' Flint), possible oil, a Taboo victory (actually 2), an email that I will receive 2 years in the future,

a 3 year wedding anniversary, 2 17-hour road trips, and lots and lots of new experiences and revelations that will make great material for new inside jokes.
Good friends are Great.

Anyways, here is a custom nursery bedding set that I shipped off before we left.
I absolutely LOVE this one!!
It's so bright and cheery and happy.
I used Heather Bailey's Pop Daisy (turqoise) and Pineapple Brocade (rose) for the bumper.
Peony in rose for the bumper ties.
The sheet was Tiled Primrose (rose) and the crib skirt was a box pleat made out of Rose Bouquet (ice) with a Peony (rose) border.

Then for the quilt I took all those fabrics and made a large zig-zag crib quilt.
Measures 45x60" ish.
I think.
I really need to get better at this whole measuring quilts thing before I send them across the country.
For quilting I just did my usual 1/4" from each side of the seams.
I love that for zig-zag quilts because it really helps define the zigs and the zags :)

And here's the back.
Large pieced together sections of the fabric used throughout.
LOVE it!
Oh yes, and for the binding I used Ta Dot in Ocean (I think).
It really worked well with the other fabrics.

Here's another zig-zag crib quilt that was WAY out of my comfort zone.
I don't usually use blacks and whites...
It was a HUGE challenge to make all these extremely different fabrics blend with each other in the same quilt.

But I guess that's a challenge you have to be willing to face when you make custom nursery sets and the client chooses fabrics.
I think it turned out fairly well.
It's almost like an optical illusion
The back.
Measures about 40"x50" (I really don't know- I just threw that out there).
Quilted 1/4" from seams.
Machine stitched binding.

It feels ohsogood being back to my blog.
I missed you little guy...

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Going places... creations- not me.
Well, that's not entirely true.
We leave for vacation pretty damn soon.
Yeah, baby.
Bring on the sun, Beach, because I am a comin'- I already picked out my chair.

Did I mention this vacation is CHILD FREE and that it's the first real vacation the hubby and I have EVER taken together?
And we've been together since high school, ok people?
Sure, there were a few family reunions and that long weekend in Chicago last year...
But this, this is a bona fide vacation.
This is a much-needed-long-awaited-can't-wait-to-get-a-drink-in-my-hand-and-do-nothing vacation.
I want this vacation so badly I even threatened to kill my husband if he got me pregnant before I was able to soak up some sun- and booze.

Oh, and did I also mention that we are starting our vacay off right---- in NEW ORLEANS!?!
Ta-da! We are :)

Now that I'm done rubbing my vacation in everybody's face (sorry- kinda), these are a few things that I finished up today that are now going on their own little adventures...
... this happy dress is now on its way to Texas...

...and this cheery little number is on its way to Georgia...

...and this pillow and set of curtain ties on the right (those are tiebacks, not a strange bow in the corner) are going to meet that cozy little nursery set over there on the left in Tennessee where it's already snuggling a new baby girl...

... and this super snazzy dress is on its way to the Windy City to brighten things up a little.

And that's it for today.
Where would you like to vacation??

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Guess what?... Primary!!!

I happen to find it extremely funny that I don't EVER work with primary colors and I somehow end up making 2 primary quilts back to back.

This was a commission quilt and the customer wanted semi-traditional blocks made from primary colors- but she wanted there to be mostly solid blocks of primary colors instead of quilted blocks.


I could tell she was into the traditional quilts and such, but wanted to venture out into something a little more modern.
But not TOO modern.
I think she was out of her comfort zone as much as I was out of mine.
I must admit, at first I was at a loss as to what I should do.
When I make a quilt, pillow, dress, whathaveyou, it's very important for me to keep my 'style'
-if you will-
It still needs to look like I made it, you know?
I was so far out of my element in the color scheme already, that when she threw in the 'mostly solid' situation I kinda freaked.
I think it turned out pretty nice- and modern-
and I happen to like both nice and modern.

I liked my process, too.
After I made my log cabin blocks (I think I started with 6), I taped out a huge rectangle on my living room floor of how big the quilt should be.
Then, I arranged all my squares in a way that I liked.
I'm not so fond of even number randomness- so I made a 7th block to make myself happy.
Then, I rearranged the blocks.
The next part was the hardest.
Because I had no plan for how I laid out my log cabin blocks, I had no plan for filling in the blank spaces with solid colors.
So, I measured and cut each piece of red, yellow, or blue fabric to fit PERFECTLY (including seam allowances) into its own little spot.
It was kinda tough.
I'm not sure if this was the most time effective way of doing this- but it worked for me.
And I was 100% sure everything would fit together.
It was like a huge 60x90" floor puzzle...
with no real right answer.
My customer also wanted this little poem/prayer added to the back of the quilt for her son.
I wrote on the white fabric first in pencil, then in a black fabric marker.
Then, I ironed all the edges under, making sure the corners were nice and flat, pinned it down, and hand-stitched the square all around with simple stitches and red embroidery thread.
Cute, huh?
I was probably most excited about being able to use this super awesome striped fabric for the binding.
I LOVE striped bindings.
(Please ignore my dead grass.)
I think this added a lot to the quilt -and let me throw in a little me into the mix.
The back of the quilt is also a favorite for me.
I think this is truly a reversible quilt.

So, moral of the story is:
You can work outside your comfort zone in every way while still enjoying the process and learning how to keep yourself and your style intact.
And ending up with a winning end result that you are proud of :)

Tell me what you think? Modern? Boring? Did I adhere to the customer's wishes? Please, give me some input!
I need some feedback on this baby!

ps: this song is "Primary Colours" by The Horrors... I found it quite fitting :)