Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween!

Sometime over the summer I was browsing around Etsy and came across a vendor selling those mini charm packs for (what I thought was) a pretty reasonable price.  I thought they were cute, but didn't have a clue what one would do with them.  I think I even googled "what to do with a mini charm pack" looking for inspiration.  I didn't find anything quite what I was looking for, but of course I ordered a two-pack of the Boo Crew anyway.

Eventually I decided to make myself a simple patchwork pillow with the squares set on point in a random-ish pattern.  I needed one more square to complete my layout, so I added a black and white gingham from my stash.

I quilted on each side of the seam lines - except I didn't notice until it was all assembled and done that I missed one row of stitching!  Oh well.  My pillow form isn't quite big enough either, but it still came out pretty cute I think.

The back were a couple polka dot prints I had on hand.  And the little stuffed pumpkin came from my mom :)

Happy Haunting!

Monday, October 28, 2013

How to make your house smell really good with minimal effort

I'd be remiss in my blogging if I didn't mention how much I adore my crock pot.  It's so great to come home to dinner already made, especially when the effort involved is typically pretty minimal and the results are pretty tasty!

A couple weeks ago my husband and I went to Huber's Farm across the bridge in Indiana.  It's a really pretty drive, especially in the fall!  We had planned to visit the little store, eat a country lunch and go pick a pumpkin at the patch.  Unfortunately, Mother Nature rained on our parade - literally.  We still did the store and got lunch, but we nixed the patch.

My purchase at the store was some weirdo looking gourds and a half peck of Jonathan apples.  No way could two of us eat that many apples, so I followed this recipe and made some apple butter!

 This recipe is super easy - the hardest part is peeling and chopping the apples.  Then add sugar and spices to taste, and let your crock pot do the hard work!  It takes the better part of a full day to get the apples cooked down, but the smell is divine!

I used my immersion blender to get the apple butter nice and smooth.  It makes just enough for you to enjoy for yourself, as well as feel OK about giving to friends, neighbors or co-workers.  I also found this recipe for Apple Butter Bars if you wanted to do something a little different with your apple butter.


Sunday, October 27, 2013

Blogger's Quilt Festival entry #2

You get to enter two quilts into the Blogger's Quilt Festival (hosted by Amy's Creative Side) so I thought I might as well pick another, especially now that I've got this blog up and running!

My second entry is in the Baby Quilt section.  It's a surprise for a co-worker, so here's hoping she doesn't stumble across this little blog before her shower in a couple weeks!  She and her husband are expecting their first baby - a little boy.

This baby quilt is made from a Simply Color layer cake (well, half of the layer cake - the boyish half, I still have the more girlish half left!) and a white solid I already had on hand.  It's hard to find good boyish fabrics that aren't cartoon-y or overly primary, but I think this color scheme really works for a little boy.  The back is a bunch of blues pulled from my stash.  The tutorial is on Moda Bake Shop and is called Hot Cross Buns.

The trimming of the squares made quite a little pile of scraps.  I took this picture and posted it on Facebook - and one of my friends asked if I was making a quilt for a mouse!  I'm pretty sure I actually LOLed when I read that :)

Thanks for reading!

It's normal to start a blog to participate in an online event, right?

I had been toying with the idea of starting a blog for a while and decided to take the plunge now in order to participate in the Blogger's Quilt Festival over at Amy's Creative Side.

I made this quilt based on this tutorial.  There was a lot of measuring and trimming involved to make sure the points (mostly) matched up and I debated a couple different layouts before deciding on the final one.  I thought the ones at the top left were kind of boring but the ones on the right were maybe a little too busy.  So I ended up going with the ones on the bottom left.

The solids are from a Kona solids jelly roll and the white is Kona snow.  I didn't take a picture of the back, but the fabric is a purple and green marbled look and the binding is a purple batik, both from Joann's.  It probably wouldn't have been my first choice for a backing/binding if I was keeping it, but I think it suits the people I gave it to quite nicely.

I gave it to my local longarm quilter, Sandy Cardosi, for the quilting, and I think it came out great.  We debated about different quilting designs, but decided to go with a large, all-over stipple that wouldn't detract from the modern pattern.

The quilt measured about 61" x 72", a nice throw size.  There's a throw category in the Festival, but there were a LOT of entries already in the category so I decided on the ROYGBIV category instead.

Thanks for reading my first blog entry!  I'm hoping to post semi-regularly, so please check back as I get things up and running!