Friday, January 31, 2014


I actually managed to get my item done well ahead of time for the link up then totally forgot about it.  I did give it a quick mention in a TGIFF post a couple of weeks ago but thought it was deserving of its very own post.

After seeing all of the cute Cat Quilts popping up on Instagram (pattern and QAL hosted by O' Fransson) at the end of December I just had to join in.  I was pretty good about staying caught up on the blocks but decided to make it my ALYOF January project to make sure it didn't get put on the back burner like so many of my projects.  In hind sight, I wish I would have added a border around the edges so that the binding isn't directly on top of the cats but since I plan on making another one before too long I'll just chalk it up to lesson learned :).  I decided to make it completely from scraps.  Some of which came from scraps bags that were bought/swapped and were not my usual style but they blend in well I think.  I also used this mini quilt as an excuse to try out a new free motion quilting pattern.  I just used fairly tight rounded zig-zags (I know there is actually a name for this but I have no idea what it is-feel free to leave a comment lettering me know ;P).  I left the cats unquilted which caused them to puff up a bit--and turned out to be my favorite part.  I debated about what to use for the binding but in the end felt the quilt needed a dark "frame".  The black binding has little scissors on it!!

Linking up to ALYOF and off to find my project for next month :)

TGIFF The Big-City Bags Edition

I finished my Fireside Bowl Bag over the weekend but thanks to a lengthy bout with a stomach virus I'm just now able to show it off. There's still time to link up your finished project for this month of the Big-City Bags Sew Along if you haven't already. The link will close at midnight tonight! 

I was surprised at how quickly the construction of this bag went.  The making of the bag itself took a long time but that was due to errors on my part:  forgotten supplies, quilting the exterior, MORE forgotten supplies...

I absolutely love the way my bag turned out.  I did make a couple of changes/omissions/errors.  I managed to completely mess up the first step of the bag (THE FIRST STEP--doesn't exactly set a good tone for the bag).  The way I constructed the zipper panel worked out just fine in the end but I still have no idea how that happened.  That's what I get for sewing past midnight I guess.  I decided to use batting on the exterior and quilted it heavily with a crosshatch pattern and I used fusible fleece to line the interior for added stability.  I also screwed up my interior pockets and as a result have several very shallow pockets that aren't good for much.  One thing I think I will do differently next time I make this bag is to cut the accent pieces about a 1/4" wider than the pattern calls for.  When sewing the bag I had to set them away from the edge of my exterior pieces just a bit to make sure they would actually show up and not get lost in the seam allowance.

  And if for some reason it turns out you bought the wrong size D-rings and can't use them, the lobster clasp will actually go over the D-ring straps and work just fine :)

 All in all this was a quick, easy project (I wouldn't expect any less from Sara).  I can't wait to get started on February's project but more on that on Monday!  

Linking up with TGIFF!

Friday, January 24, 2014

Show Off Your Finishes!

It's time to link up your finished Fireside Bowl Bags for the first month of the Big-City Bags SAL.

I'm a bit embarrassed to admit that my bag is not finished. But I hope to change that tonight. Hubby just got home from work so I'm off to try to make a completed bag out of the pieces shown below.

Please link up below with your finished bag to be entered into the drawing for a great prize from By Annie's Soft n' Sable!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Guest Poster: Mara from Secretly Stitching

Hello my name is Mara, I blog over at Secretly Stitching, let me show you my version of the Fireside Bowl Bag, the first pattern in the "Big City Bags" book, by Sara Lawson.

The white fabric with chocolate covered strawberries is "Chocoholic" designed for Exclusively Quilters and the black strawberry fabric is Studio 8 for Quilting Treasures.
The strap is Black Kona and the detail is Red Kona.
For the Interior I used the same black fabric as the exterior bottom.
I only did 1 pocket and since I only had 1 lobster claw I only used 1 on 1 side and sewed the strap in on the other.
Detail of sewed in strap side.
The making of this bag went super easy, I didn't have any deco-fuse fusible interfacing so my version is a little softer, and the fabrics made me crave a stop at my favorite coffee shop, so I took the bag along.
I drank my latte and the bag and I picked out some sweets, chocolate covered, of course.
There really is no front or back of this bag, they both look the same.
Oh and I added handles at the top, just for fun :)

Things I would change if I make this bag again:
Definitely use the required Deco-Fuse, it's very soft with out it,
and make the exterior bottom fabric larger, it doesn't really show up much. 
I like the hand straps and would do them again, it makes it easy to remove the strap and carry, I can tuck mine inside and I added a pocket for the strap, so it wouldn't go to the bottom of the bag and possible get dirty.
I hope you are joining Angela here at Sewing with Squeak for the "Big City Bags" Sew Along.

Friday, January 17, 2014


Some quick finishes to show off.

 This was originally started as part of the Dancing Stars QAL and was going to be a crib size quilt but at the rate I was going it wouldn't be done until my kids were in high school.  So I put together what I already had completed and this was the result.

My Cat Quilt (part of the Cat Quilt Along).  I already have plans for another one!

A late gift for my FIL made with the new Botanics line and a little bit of solids and Architextures thrown in for good measure.  This was my first time using a flannel sheet for backing...not too bad!

Another great pattern that I was privileged enough to test out for our Paper Piecing Party host Kristy.  I love this little guy.  I can't decide what to do with him.  Should I make him into a pillow cover or wait for her other soon to be released patterns and make a quilt?  And I JUST now realized I used the wrong color in one spot &#@!  Maybe I can fix it without ripping out too many seams.  Anyway, back on sure and keep an eye out for Kristy's new patterns!

A former acquaintance contacted me on Facebook about doing a custom outfit for her daughter's first birthday.  She sent me a picture of what she wanted along with a long list of changes to be made to the pictured outfit and this was the finished result.  She seemed happy and I got a little bit of practice on garment making.

And finally, my Lucky Stars BOM for January.  Not sure what happened but this block only came out to 11" square instead of 12".  I was already planning on redoing my 2013 blocks in the 6" size and this line of fabric and combining the two to make a larger (and more interesting layout).  Now I may just resize the patterns a little each month to make it even more random.  We'll see....

Sorry, I know I said that was going to be quick.

Linking up to TGIFF and Paper Piecing Party!

PS  I still have quite a bit left from my Instagram destash.  Head on over and make me an offer for anything that is left.  You can see it all at @sewingwithsqueak :)

Tuesday, January 14, 2014


Don't forget about The Great Fabric Destash starting tomorrow night on Instagram. #thegreatfabricdestash. This wonderful idea was though up by @twomoreseconds. I've gone though my stash and am pretty surprised with how much I'm willing to part with. Be sure to check out what I have up for grabs @sewingwithsqueak. 

Purse Progress

I've been densely quilting the exterior of my Fireside Bowl Bag for the first month of the Big City Bag SAL.  It's on hold until I can get more thread...

FAL 2014

I've decided to join in with the Lovely Year of Finishes hosted by The Littlest Thistle.

I'm too lazy to take down all of my projects and lay them out all nice and neat to be photographed but here they all are : basted and ready to quilt.

1)  Botanicals Birthday Quilt
2)  Out to Sea Churn Dash Quilt
3)  Wren & Friends Plus Quilt
4)  Enchanted Patchwork Quilt
5)  In From the Cold Quilt

Not very creative with my quilt names am I?!

There you have it.  If I can get all of those done I have several more that just need backing, basting, quilting and binding :P.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Get Your Big City Bags SAL Button

The Big City Bags Button is finally ready!  Grab one now and don't forget to post your progress photos over in the Flickr group!!!


Monday, January 6, 2014

Progress Report

Sunday wasn't very productive due to a couple of meltdowns by my kiddos.  Thankfully I got quite a bit done Friday night and Saturday :).

I'm happy to say that I've already got my Lovely Year of Finishes project completed.  I don't have it photographed though so I'll leave you with this photo for now.

Another now finished product that hasn't been properly photographed.  As soon as the weather gets a little better...

I've finally started working on my Gingerbread Lane Sampler again.  I've also decided that I want to start over on my Woodland Sampler.  I only got as far as June so it won't be too bad to redo it.  I'm also starting on the Fairytale Sampler this month.  If I can get all of my supplies ordered that is.  One of the colors of floss seems to be very popular and hard to find at the moment.

It's been way too long since I've paper pieced.  I'm testing a pattern for one of the wonderful bloggers I follow.  I planned on having it finished but with the kiddos being difficult it didn't happen.

And last I finished the practice block from the Lucky Stars BOM.  I'm much happier with the fabrics I chose this time around and plan on redoing the 2013 blocks with these same fabrics (I'm thinking the 6" version for a fun layout in the end).

Our guild meeting is tonight but with so many things on my to do list I'm not sure I'll make it.  I've got three custom orders and the above tester that need to be finished in the next couple of days.  And with the temperatures being so low there is a good chance Squeak won't have school tomorrow... 

I'll keep you posted ;)

***Turns out the meeting isn't until NEXT week, so problem solved :).  Glad some of the other members reads my blog!***

Linking up with Kristy over at Quiet Play. She has some amazing new paper pieced patterns that are getting ready to come out so be sure and take a look!!!

Friday, January 3, 2014

A Lovely Year of Finishes

I'm going to join in for the first time with Fiber of All Sorts in the Lovely Year of Finishes Challenge.  There are several things I could put on this list as I have 3 custom orders and numerous WIPs but I've decided to keep the momentum going on my Cat Quilt (plus it's the only one I seem to have a photo of :P).

I have the perfect backing in mind.  I'm working from my stash as much as possible the first six months of this year (more about that here) so I am using a pretty pink fabric that was given to me my a friend when she was destashing.  I'm not sure about the binding yet.  Maybe black for a dramatic "frame"...

What color binding would you choose?

This block was so easy and fun that I'm already planning my next one inspired by the one by Stitching & Bacon.  It will be at least a lap size quilt using larger blocks.  Hope my math skills aren't too rusty!!

Are You Ready?

This month marks the kickoff of the Big-City Bags Sew Along.  Do you have your book?  Fabrics?  Notions?  I have had mine ready for awhile and can't wait to get started as soon as I get my sewing space in order.  I've got to get it organized so I can get the creative juices flowing :)

The first bag in the book is the Fireside Bowl Bag. 

(Photo used with permission of Martingale Publishing.  Photograph by Brent Kane.)

Just a reminder of the rules:
  • The book is available now through so get your copy now!
  • There are twelve projects in the book making it perfect for a year long sew along featuring one bag per month
  • The sew along will start on January 1, 2014 (I'm a couple of days late, sorry!)
  • We will be sewing the books in the order they are in the book.  Only the bag for that specific month will be eligible for the link up.
  • The bag must be complete to qualify for prizes.
  • On the first of every month I will announce a new project and prize. 
  • You will have from January 25th until midnight on January 31st CST to link up your project for a chance to win that month's prize.
  • I hope to have some wonderful ladies help me out by sharing their takes on the project, as well as with their tips and tricks for completing them.
  • Join the Flickr group to see all the projects that have been made.

This month's sponsor is ByAnnie's Soft & Stable who has generous agreed to give away a package of one of her products that will come in handy when making nearly any bag.  I've been given a package to test myself and can't wait to use it and let you know my thoughts!

I can always use more people that would like to participate in the informal blog hop.  Just leave a comment or send an email to me at

So in order to end up with a great new handbag and a chance at a great prize you'll need to get to work.  Don't forget to put progress pics up on the Flickr page.  I can't wait to see what you all are making!

Our Wonderful sponsors:

And a special offer from zipit:  15% off of all orders for those sewing along
Use code sewingwithsqueak at checkout to apply the discount