Sunday, March 24, 2013

Top Done

I finally got the top pieced together for my Spring Scrappy Trip quilt.  Please forgive the terrible photo, it's raining today.  Now the search is on for backing and binding fabric.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Just Stuff

The affair continues.
 True love.


Really big tongue.

And a little free motion quilting practice.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

A Pet Project, Gallery Wall Update

A few weeks ago I ran across a photo on Pinterest with dog silhouettes as wall art.  I can't find the original source, so I'm not going to link it, sorry.  But I thought it was a really cute idea and kept the idea in the back of my mind.  A week ago Mr. Backwoods cleared a few things out of the junk/storage/craft room and while I was rearranging I found a box of frames that I'd forgot about.  I pulled a few out and on Sunday I took them outside and spray painted them all black.  Then, I pulled out my stash of scrapbook paper, and while I was watching The Walking Dead, picked out the ones I wanted to use.  This was mostly done during commercials, I'm a dedicated WD fan.

Once I had all my papers picked out and trimmed, I just googled "dog silhouette" and traced the ones I wanted to use directly off the screen with a pencil.  Then I filled them in with a black Sharpie and erased the pencil marks..

This is the crew in real life for reference.  Only photo I could find with all of them together.

Ziggy aka The Terrible Terrier

His was probably the easiest to find, I just googled "Yorkie Silhouette" and this was one of the first that popped up.  I did have to make the tail and legs a little longer so it looked more like him.

Penny, I think this one is my favorite, I really like the pink and green.

The Pyrenees silhouettes I found were all heavier looking than her, so I had to modify this one a little, too.  Also, I wanted to show her tail curled up, so I had to surf around a little and actually traced the tail of a shepherd of some kind.  We have no idea what actual mix of breeds she is, so it was an appropriate process.

Rambo.  I haven't talked about him on the blog yet, but he's a Mastiff we rescued in a joint effort with my in-laws.  He lived next door to my mother in law and his owners were going through a divorce. 

They don't have a fence and live in a populated area.  We have the appropriate space but weren't really financially able to take on a dog the size of a horse.  So we're sort of fostering him here and they help with food and care costs.  Mr. Backwoods' uncle is in process of buying property, so if he has a good fence, he may take Rambo permanently.  We haven't decided the details yet, but he's definitely staying in the family.

Drake. He actually belongs to my sister, but he's a regular fixture around here.  Babe Jr was insistent that we include him because he's part of the family.

And last but not least, we couldn't leave out Smoky.

The shot below was taken the same day as the first shot above.  He was obviously avoiding the dogs.  He plays with Penny and Ziggy regularly, but that day was a bit of an excess dose of canines, I think.  It made for a pretty neat photo, though.

Once all the creative work was done, I pulled most of the frames and mirrors existing on the gallery wall and kept just those with black frames.  I think it turned out to be a cute mix of Babe Jr and all the animals.  Appropriate gallery of our family.

There are various photos of Babe Jr over the years, a caricature of her done at Mr. B's company picnic when she was in preschool, and a page from an old notebook I came across recently while organizing craft supplies.  She had drawn a face in hot pink pen right about the time she was learning to write her name; one of the letters is upside down.  I had to frame it, it was too sentimental to toss.

Now I realize I need to update again soon.  We haven't done a good photo shoot since she had her braces removed.  Hopefully we won't add any more pets to the brood before I get a chance to do that.

Monday, February 25, 2013

New Quilt

My mother-in-law has been bugging me to make her a lap quilt since I showed her the first one I finished for Babe Jr. last fall.  Her birthday was coming up and she just wanted something small to take to church, so I decided to make one with a block that is a little more labor intensive that what I've been doing.  It's called a disappearing 4 patch.

I had a vintage sheet that was just big enough to use as the backing and white squares.  It  has little bouquets of flowers with bows, so I was able to coordinate several different colors of fabric leftover from other projects.

I did mostly straight line quilting.  I've been wanting to try out free motion quilting for a while now, so I decided to try some doodly (that's a technical term) flowers in the negative spaces. 

I'm really pleased with it and she was thrilled.  I enjoyed my first taste of FMQ, now I'm trying to come up with some small projects so I can practice.  I'm seeing pot holders and place-mats in the near future.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Project: Bohemian Pillow Cover

Recently I've been selling a few quilts through facebook.  I'm not ready to have a full fledged business and set up an etsy or anything, but I really enjoy the process and an order here and there gives me a little extra cash and is really building my scrap pile.   I don't have any orders currently, so I've been working on a few projects for myself.  I like to bounce around, I currently have 2 scrap quilts started and one in progress as a gift for a family member.

Then, a few days ago as I was blog browsing I ran across this Pillow by Maureen Cracknell Handmade.  I saw if first in the background of a photo on a recent post; and I LOVED IT!  It's one of those things I couldn't get out of my head so I spent some time yesterday going through her blog and Flickr stream until I found the post linked above with better photos of the pillow.  She was inspired by a pillow from West Elm.

Once  got a closer look at it, I immediately got started on my own version.

I went through my scrap bin and pulled out some of my favorites.  The pillow I used is 18", so I cut a 19" square of a neutral fabric then started cutting 1 1/4" strips.  I used the 60 degree mark on my quilt ruler and cut them so that each band is 4 1/2" wide.  Once I figured out my arrangement, I pressed everything nicely.  I wanted to secure them before I stitched them on and I was out of heat'n'bond, so I just used some craft glue.  Once everything was glued, I trimmed my square down to 18 1/2" to make it a little neater.  After giving the glue a little time to dry, I stitched across all of the strips on all 4 sides 1/4" from the edges.

I love it!  It has some of my favorites from Pat Bravo, Amy Butler, and Anna Marie Horner to stuff from the clearance bin at Walmart and cast offs from family members.

Once the front was done, I cut 2 pieces of solid fabric for the back each with one edge hemmed, then overlapped them and pinned in place with right sides facing each other.  Then I was able to sew all the way around without having to use a zipper or leave an opening.  The cover basically works like a pillow sham.  It's very practical.  I think I am going to make more covers this way because they can be removed to wash but don't require cost and effort of adding a zipper. 

Thursday, December 13, 2012

More Christmas Decor

The new stockings are finished.

A vignette on the dresser.

I can't remember where I first saw apothecary jars with snow globe like scenes.  I was at Walmart with a friend and she was picking up a few of the little trees that are set out with the Christmas villages to make some for her house.  They were only about $.75 each so I grabbed a few.  I already had the little town hall ornament, I used batting for the snow.  The basket is just extra ornaments mixed in with the some of the potpourri that it's usually filled with.  I wrapped a few of the balls with yarn to add a little color.  And the owls - aren't they so cute?  I got these for $3.00 each at a local thrift store!  I think they look great with my sort of modern rustic theme, I'll probably find a permanent spot for them after the holidays.

I added a few things to the tree, butterfly ornaments - the wings are made of feathers.  The past 3 years I've decorated my mother-in-law's tree; she gave them to me since they match my tree and hers is all red now.

I've not been able to get a picture of it yet this year that I'm satisfied with.  The photos are hazy in morning light and there's not enough light in the afternoon.  Then cat got in it and pulled some lights loose.  Since I would have to take everything off to fix it, it's going to just have to stay half lit at this point, so my photos are all with lights off.

This year's gift wrap.

I am so happy with how cute our gifts are this year! I picked up a roll of brown shipping paper, the green sheer ribbon, and a few brown gift bags at the Dollar Tree.  That was a whopping total of 5.00 spent.  I had the green foil paper left over from a few years ago.  I've used pine cones and twine, leftover ornaments, and extra ribbon from by scrapbook stash to jazz up a few of the packages.  I stamped names directly on the brown paper this year instead of buying tags, it's gives them a more contemporary look.  I think my biggest splurge here was buying a few packs of matching lime green tissue paper in the birthday aisle, $2.49 for 8 sheets instead of the cheaper multi-packs in the seasonal aisle.

And last but not least, even wrapping supplies can be decorative if you stick them in a pretty container.