Saturday, December 31

Christmas Toys

Well like most crafters I always get tools and supplies for presents. I do that sneaky thing of posting a wish list on amazon and sending it to those who ask - what do you want for Christmas?  

This one punches holes in metal that are 1" to 1/2"
You have to whack the pins pretty hard so hubby gave me
his short handled sledge hammer.  Oh dear another hammer. 

This punches smaller holes for accents or adding 
rivets and jump rings. It goes threw 20 gauge metal like butter. 
No strain on my hands at all. 

After cutting the disks I put them in the dapping block
and shaped them into bowl shapes. Then I ran them 
threw some flame and then back to the dapping block. 

I nipped the bottoms of the disks with the blue handled punch
to get these zagged edges. Then to keep the patina I gave them
a coat of clear spray varnish. 

These techniques will be taught in my stamped metal class
on January 21st at the Rivergate JoAnn. 

On the sewing front I'm making Ian another monster. 
This one will have a zipper mouth and a little vest
that buttons. It's to teach him how to work buttons and zippers. 

After putting away all the Christmas decorations and cleaning up the 
house playing was needed so this was a fun little project. I got lots
of ideas of other things to make with these new tools. 

Well now it's time to answer that age old question
what's for dinner? To the kitchen I go in search of an answer. 
Does anyone else's husband ask you this question before it's even lunch?

Thursday, December 29

Christmas Day

Well Christmas was just wonderful this year. We got to see all our family. Hubby's sister from out of town was here and she hadn't been home for Christmas for so many years. It was just great to see everyone. 

Several days before Christmas we went to see Ice.
I'd never been and it was a real treat. 

Needless to say it was very cold in there. They supply these big blue coats for you to wear and the one hand I was using to take photos was really frozen when we got out. It was beautiful thou and it's hard to image how they make these huge statues from ice. Hot coco was a wonderful treat when we where done. 

We started off Christmas day at my sister in laws home
with a yummy breakfast she made.
She's a great cook and we all ate way too much. 
There there was the crazy package opening. 
Then around noon we headed out to my sister's home
to have Christmas with them. 

On Christmas day my husband's grandmother
went to her heavenly father. This is her the first day 
I met her. She greeted me at the door with a beautiful smile
and open arms. She told me that day that anyone who
could make her grandson happy was a wonderful person. 
It really touched my heart then and I'll never forget those words. 

Mary Elizabeth Vaughn would have been 92 on
new years day. She will be missed, but she left
behind a large loving family who will treasure
her memory for ever. 

Wednesday, December 21

Well Christmas is almost here and I know everyone is busy with family, friends, baking, presents and getting our homes ready for all the visiting. I am working a few hours today but then need to come home and do some serious house cleaning. I've been using my cutting table to wrap presents on and the craft room looks like a tornado hit. I still have about 5 gifts left to wrap and then clean up my mess. Then the last minute baking of cookies and I think I can say it's done. 
I miss sewing and playing with my other crafts but during this busy season there just isn't time for playing. 

One little last thing I need to get done today is put an old drawing in a frame. 
This drawing was done for my little sister when she was around 4-5 and hung in her bedroom. My mom had saved it all these years so now I'm going to reframe it for another 2.5 year olds bedroom. It's marker and ink and when I look back at a drawing I did when I was 17, well it really brings back memories of how I used to draw all the time. 

I saw a video on u tube about adding color to metal with Tim Holtz Alcohol inks. 
So I had to run out and get some of these right away. 
They are in the scrap booking section of your craft store. 
After I had done all the texturizing to the metal I just dropped a 
drop of each color onto the metal and swirled it around. 
It dries quickly and then I followed that with a clear coat sealant. 
With a little experimenting I think this will become a great new
way to add color to my metal jewelry. 

Here is another necklace that I used the Tim Holtz metal accents on. 
The key in the bottom dangle and the metal on the top that looks
like the hardware from a dresser drawer were from his collection. 
The hardware was attached with rivets on to the brass base. 

And just wanted to share this - I was cleaning my sewing room 
and was tossing out this old pillow, but it seemed that my 
little buddy thought it still had some good use left in it. 
Thou he just barely fit, he took it over right away. 

There won't be much time left for posting and I'm sure
few have time to read posts with Christmas just a few days away. 
So I 'd like to wish you and yours a wonderful Christmas. 

Saturday, December 17

Last Minute Gifts

Yesterday I had a visit from Angel and Ian and we looked at all my
trees and just had a good time. I had started making soap that morning
and finished up after they left. So I got a good amount made. 
I got started making soap for my hubby and he now 
has become hooked on the home made soap and isn't too fond
of "store soap". So every few months I get out the few supplies 
it takes a whip up a batch. This time I made extras for a few gifts. 

 Some cling wrap and a little paper and
some of my scrap booking supplies.

 Simple little packaging.

This is a small quilt (32" square) for a sweet little girl
who just loves Olivia the pig. 
This is a drag around quilt for a 18 month old. 
It was a 5 min job on the cutting and layout 
thanks to my Accuquilt. I used the 12" block set. 
Sewing it together was a snap too. 

Well today I'm doing some experimenting with a new technique for
adding color to metal. I'm excited about this and will show you
the results tomorrow. It has tons of possibilities. 

Sunday, December 11

The Holiday's Are In Full Swing

Well it's officially the Holidays now with Christmas parties and visits to see family I don't get to see too often. Yesterday was a whirl of activities and I had a lot of fun. First I was off to the Music City Modern Quilter's Guild Christmas Party. We had so much food and I of course ate too much. We had a secret santa swap and also did a dirty santa with fabric. After stealing someone's fabric (sorry Trudy) I ended up with some beautiful grunge fabrics from Moda. One of my favorites!

We had a show & tell and one of our members brought all 
these darling aprons she is making for presents. 
Leah of Burgundy Buttons models one - aren't they cute!

After the meeting Stefanie, Trudy and I went by the 
new Archiver's in Cool Springs. I'd never been into one of
there shops before and oh my what trouble I can get into in there. 
They had way too much Tim Holtz stuff and I did fall pray to 
getting a few things. What can I say. I use a lot of his
metal embellishments in my jewelry and I love his 
paper's and inks for my scrap booking

 My secret Santa was a beautiful table runner
which in now on my coffee table. 
Note my comfy chair in the background
with my pillows/quilts and knitting. 

 Today I've been working on a bib necklace which I'm calling Winter Ice. 
Here are some of the components. It's going to have a lot of bling. 

Friday, December 2

A Day out of Shopping & Fun

Yesterday was a fun day. I went over to my friend Stefanie's house and we went to the quilt shop where she was picking up several custom order quilts from her quilter. I of course had to do some shopping while I was there. 

 I just love this fabric. There are about 10 designs
in the collection and it was very 
hard to pick just two. I just may have to go back. 

I'm trying to get a stash of 30's fabrics collected and
picked out a pretty blue and aqua set yesterday. 

We also dropped by JoAnn's and since the jewelry
stuff was on sale for 40% off...well you know what happened. 

This is my project for this morning. I'm making a 
pillow that was inspired from the book below. 

Also have to get ready for class tomorrow
and open house at JoAnn's. 

Wednesday, November 30

Who Can Pass Up A Sale

Well it's sale time in my Etsy shop
starting Dec 1 - Dec 15 every thing is 15% off. 

Here is the code to use. 

oooh original huh

Drop by and see what's new!

It's Beginning to look a lot like...

OK I must admit Christmas is a favorite time of year for me. 
I love all the decorations, the food and of course seeing all my 
family and friends. It's just wonderful. 

 Once the Holly pig is out - it's officially Christmas. 
Mother made him for me many years ago. 

My cards are made and ready to start addressing. 

My project for this morning is to get a pillow top cut out and hopefully pieced. 
I also just took over 100 photos of my jewelry to post on Etsy. I'll be having a sale
starting tomorrow. I'll post a code here tomorrow so you can save on purchases
you make between Dec. 1 - 15 of this year. 

Monday, November 28

AH The Holidays - What Joy

This might just be the best Christmas I've had in many years. Why?
Because of this sweet boy. 
Remember a few posts back I showed you this yellow
monster stuffed toy I made - well he sleeps with a 
sweetie every night now. My sister even found a
little book about a monster going to bed at night. 

 He's a big help around the house too. 

The Wednesday before Thanksgiving I took the day to sew. With having dinner at my lovely sister in laws house I had no cooking to do and didn't have to clean the house to hospital clean. Whew. I got a few Christmas presents done - the binding on a lap quilt, my secret santa for the quilt guild, a pillow for a friend and even managed to clean and organize my sewing area. 

I'd had this idea for a bracelet running around in my head screaming to get out and I knew I had to at least get caught up on my sewing before I let the idea free. 

I used a new technique to achieve the color/texture on the metal. This sits on your wrist very comfy and I  just love the many textures and elements. 
Saturday I got the house all decorated for Christmas and it really makes me happy to see all the little trees and my decorations I've had for so many years. I remember as I open each box where they came from and each brings a memory all it's own. 
Then yesterday I got my sample done for the next Social Artwork class and also have the next wire workshop project half done. Seems there is just not enough time in each day. But I am thankful for all the things I do and enjoy so much. 

Tuesday, November 22

Where Does the Time Go?

Well it will be Thanksgiving in just a few days and it makes me wonder just where has the year gone? This morning I was clearing off the mantel for the soon to be Christmas decorations - wow Christmas already! There is a pile of presents on the couch in the sitting room upstairs but so much is left to do - guess you know what I mean. So I'm sewing away trying to get some things finished. 
My mom started a tradition with us after Angel and I got married and every year at Thanksgiving would give us a Christmas decoration. I've tried to keep up this tradition and try to make things for my family each year. Seems like it's getting harder to get things finished in time, but I've managed to make extra quilting time in the mornings. I can get a lot more done if I get up early and have at least an hour to play before going to work. 
I got the quilt done for the shower last week a mer 2 hours before I walked out the door - whew! No time for a photo thou - but I'll get one with it's new owner soon. 
Just last night I finished the binding on another present - a lap quilt. Can't show you that one cause it's new owner does pop in here from time to time. 
This little wall hanging thou I can show cause it's new owner is way too busy to read blogs. 
This is a Jim Shore pannel I picked up at the quilt show this year

 It was fun to "trace" the drawing with the free motion. 

 Table runner ready for quilting. 

Crazy mug rug made from the short sections
from the jelly roll I used for the table runner.
Love this type of piecing. No thinking - no planning. 

Well I need a day off with the sun out to take photos 
to put new items in my Etsy shop. The weather has been 
grim and wet for days. Well off to get a few more things
done before going off to work. 

Wednesday, November 16

A Wonderful Weekend

The show on Saturday went very well. My sweet niece came and helped me in my booth. She was a great help. This photo was on Hob Nob, a site for social happenings in Murfreesboro TN. 

This was just my second show so
I've not really gotten my booth the way I want it yet. 
I did get to use my Square this weekend. If you have not
seen one of these yet it's a tiny 1" square credit card
reader you just plug into your phone. The sales I made are
already in my bank account and there is no charge for the
reader or shipping, just when you swipe you pay a small percentage. 
If you do shows or any sales this might be worth looking into. 
I have seen it in several small brick and mortar shops now too. 

My sister's booth at the show.
She is a great photographer and
you can see her work on her site

Thursday, November 10

Something Old and Something New

Yesterday I went over to my sister's house to help her get Ian's room ready. Ian is coming to live with them on Sunday. He is 2 and cute as a button. We're all so excited. I can't stop thinking of all the things I'll make him. I'll be meeting him for the first time on Sunday and I'll taking him the yellow monster pillow I made last week. While we were organizing closets and packing some stuff up for the attic and boxes for Goodwill I ran across 2 quilts. Angel told me my grandmother had made them. What joy that was to see them. Needless to say I left with one. It's worn and at some point someone cut a chunk out of it, but it's still very dear to me. My Granny taught me how to crochet and cook. She was a tiny woman with a firm hand and a huge heart. She raised 7 children and lived to see a herd of grandchildren. I'll always remember her by her love of flowers, her support of her family and her open heart. I never heard her raise her voice - she was a super sweet lady. They lived on a farm and I have very fond memories of spending time there. 

And for the new - my good quilting buddy Stefanie gave me this wonderful ruler. 
I just love these better than any I've every had. I've gotten one more and plan to in time
replacing all the ones I have with the greenish yellow lines on them. 
These also have little circles on the back side that really hold to the fabric. 
I'd bought stick on things to put on my other rulers but these are really great. 
They come in tons of sizes/shapes too. 

Well I've got a bunch of stuff to do so I'll be off. 
The Christmas On Madison Ave show
is Saturday and on Sunday I'll get to meet Ian. 
What a great weekend this will be. 

Sunday, November 6

Making Up For Lost Time

Well I got really behind on my quilting while building my jewelry inventory for an upcoming show. And now I just must get back on it. Christmas is rushing towards us faster than I can sew. This morning I finished up a little fun piece. I'd not made one of these silly monsters before and it was fun. I really want to make another one. The next one will have a zipper mouth I think and I'll work some buttons into it too. 

I had planned on making the back of the turtle and monkey quilt I showed you yesterday, but just wasn't in the mood for making the back and pinning. So I started quilting on this cute doggie quilt. I'm really in a cute mode these days. I think this balances the hard edge steam punk jewelry I've been making lately. Well the quilting is almost done now and hopefully I'll get back on the other quilt real soon. That shower will be here and I'll be up putting on the binding all night.
Thanksgiving will be here before we know it. I have one of my critical items - Cheesecake Factory Pumpkin Cheesecake - It calls to me from the freezer - eat me now. I'm so week.
Well back to quilting the doggie quilt I'm so close to being done.

Friday, November 4

There is always a first time

I did something today that I didn't think I would ever do...made a quilt from a pattern. I was influenced by my good friend Stefanie. She found a pattern to work well with the beautiful fabrics (the prints) I won at our guild a few months ago that were designed by Ann Kelle
It's just the cutest fabric for a child's quilt and that was just what I am making. I needed it done by the 18th for a shower. I made the top in one day, never did that before either. I'v always leaned towards dark earthy colors and use little white so that was another new thing. Bright colors and white! Did I make this? Well it was fun to make and very quick. I think I might even make another one with this pattern - yes Stefanie you read that right.  So hopefully I'll get this sandwiched on Sunday and quilted next week. Since these colors were so out of my safe zone Stefanie helped me pick them out. Wait till you see the back and binding - 

For any of you in the Nashville area I'll be in a craft show on the 12th. 

Saturday, November 12th 9 am- 5 pm 
Farmer’s Market Community Center 
315 John R. Rice Blvd., Suite 101 Murfreesboro, TN 37129 

Tuesday, November 1

Working In Small Spaces

Living in an old 1930 home, space is limited and I often use one area for several different uses. My dinning room table often becomes my drawing table and my cutting table stands in for painting and mixed media. You all know how it is I'm sure. If only I had a big 40 x 40 foot room just for my creative projects - but alas that is not to be. So I have the ever changing work spaces.

 sewing on a small wall hanging

working on some jewelry

It takes about 5 min to swap from one joy to another. 
This little side table also is the resting spot for my babylock. 
With a tv on top of the cabinet on the left and my mac to play 
me my favorite tunes I have all I need in this room. 
We call it the play room. Hubby's workbench is here too
and we spend many hours in here working on our little projects. 
He's often sneaking into my jewelry tool box and I'm using his
work bench when he wanders away for a few min. 
It's a fun room and we enjoy it here working together in our
two different little worlds. 

He's also handy when I have metal questions or need help with solder. 
It's our happy place.