August already?

Well, ok…not quite August. I genuinely cannot believe July is almost over, though! It’s been almost a month since I posted my little pouch tutorial. Here’s what I’ve been up to in the mean time:

Work. Lots of work.

Oh! Also important and new:

Mad Men season 4 premiered on Sunday! I’ve started a tradition with Lara from Lara and the Reel Boy — we’re going to watch together every Monday. Do you watch Mad Men? If not, you should. My friend Kathryn bought season one for my birthday last November, and I’ve been catching up frantically ever since. It has fantastic story lines, and even better clothes! Is it geeky to admit that part of the reason I love it is due purely to the styling of that era? I’m gonna go with no, and also show you a little something I was inspired to create thanks to Joan Holloway et al

I refer to this formally as the Pond Pillow…


But secretly, in my head (and now in writing on my blog, so I suppose it’s not-so-secret) I refer to that lovely grey quilter’s linen as Sterling Cooper grey. Doesn’t it remind you of Don’s suits? Or the in-office couches? I’m planning on buying more ASAP!


And I love this macro shot. Such lovely colors!

Moving on from my Mad Men obsession, my older sister Whitney and my mom both had birthdays this month, July 13 and 14 respectively. I asked them to choose a sewing pattern they liked, and fabric for me to use. They chose Amy Butler’s Sophia bag pattern, and some Anna Maria Horner prints. Here’s what I’ve finished so far:

…and it has bright yellow lining! This bag is Whitney’s. My mom’s will be blues and greens.

The Sophia bag is definitely more time-consuming than I bargained for — a LOT of cutting and ironing and basting and sewing in zippers and lining and hand stitching and blood and sweat goes into these babies. I think I spent about 10-15 hours on Whitney’s. I’ve cut out all the pieces for my mom’s, and I’ve bonded all the interfacing — just need to get sewing!

Yesterday, one of my friends left town to move to South Korea (Lance, if you are reading this, I miss you already!). He had an amazing sewing that he’d been asking me about for a year or so, and we’d talked about how to get it running again, but with both of us being so busy we never got together with the sewing machine to see if we could clean it up and “Make it work!” (yes, that was a Tim Gunn quote). Well, Tripp went to see Lance one last time yesterday, before he left.. and brought me back a little surprise!

Isn’t it lovely? I have no idea how old it is, but it was made by the Jones Sewing Machine Company who were (are?) based outside of Manchester, England. Tripp said “Lance wanted me to give you this — and I thought, even if it doesn’t work, we can clean it up and display it when we move!” (don’t you love him already?). I heartily agreed with that sentiment, and I am VERY excited that I was chosen as the lucky recipient of such a gorgeous machine. Oh, in case you were wondering — it *does* work! Between amazing and giving friends and such a fantastic boyfriend, I am one lucky lady!

Lastly, I got 6 packages in the mail today (the postman probably thinks I’m crazy). I’ve been looking for dishes since we moved here, looking everywhere I can think of, and finally it hit me like a ton of bricks: The reason I didn’t like any of the dishes I saw was because they were all way too complicated. Floral patterns, stripes, polka dots, square dishes — I tend to like much more simple, classic designs. While cruising Amazon, I rediscovered Fiesta ware, which both my grandma and mom use. Hello, bright colors, strong ceramic, and durability? What’s not to love?

Since I love color, I bought a variety.

Look how pretty my dishwasher is now! (Such a weird sentence, I know, but anything that can make me happy to do dishes is ok in my book).

I’m still awaiting the arrival of shamrock (a grassy green) and cobalt blue sets. I think this dishware will provide LOTS of inspiration for color combinations in quilts and the like, which makes me extra happy!

Alright, it’s way past my bedtime. I’m off!
-K

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Vroom! Rawr!

I’ve decided to name Ezra’s quilt “Vroom! Rawr!” because of the numerous dinosaurs, animals and vehicles sprinkled about. Of course, Ezra can refer to it however he’d like (when he learns to talk!), I just have to have a name in my head to distinguish it from other quilts.

A peek at the new blocks I’ve done:
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gotta love those lions!

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Tripp and I had dinner tonight with an old friend of his that he worked with all during college. I was really happy to finally meet Andrew and his wife, Jenny — they were so much fun. We had dinner at a local and deliciously authentic Mexican food place. Mmm…those chicken tacos are to die for!

Also, this weekend one of my good friends from college got engaged. Congrats, honey! (I don’t want to say her name because I don’t know who she’s told). Her fiance is super nice and he is definitely a lucky guy, because she is a gem. They’ll be an amazing couple.

Oh! I almost forgot…I got some new fabrics in today…
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A charm pack of Hello Betty! by Moda, in the retro colorway. I love it already. Look at those amazing teals, reds and greys.

More quilting tomorrow!
-K

New Block on the Block

Here’s a sneak peek of…
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The first block in Ezra’s quilt! Ezra is 3 months old, he’s my friend Griselda’s first baby, and he’s so cute I want to cuddle him! Unfortunately, I live in Austin and Gris lives in L.A., so she asked me to make him a quilt. She specifically requested reds, browns, and whites to match his baby gear — I threw in a bit of blue because I thought it would offset the darker colors nicely. Here’s the whole block:
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I thought this would be a great time to use the wonky style log cabin blocks. It gives off a relaxed, creative, fun vibe — perfect for a little boy! What do you think?

On Tuesday, I bought some new yarn. It’s a bamboo blend, so it’s not only renewable, it’s also amazingly soft and is a gorgeous olive green.
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Bonus: Odie is super pumped about it!
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Tutorial for the hexagons is coming soon!

-K

A different type of stitch…

Besides deciding yesterday to try my hand at entrelac knitting, I also recently finished up a shawl I’ve been working on for a while now. It will be up in my etsy shop as soon as I get it properly blocked and photographed. It’s gorgeous! I think I’ll call it…well, I have a name for it, but you’ll have to wait until I get it on Etsy. Naming my creations is half the fun! Now for ze photos:
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As you can see, the pattern is a pretty basic — k5, p5 for six rows, then switch — but I love it!

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Also, I got some beauty in the mail today from MyNeedleandThread, a wonderful Etsy seller I just discovered. She was so helpful and sweet! Go check out her store — she has some adorable fabrics and her prices are amazing.
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Last week, I was commissioned to create a quilt by a friend in Los Angeles for her new baby boy, Ezra. She wants it to be mostly reds/browns/whites (which just happen to be my favorite colors!) — this will be my first commissioned quilt, which I am very excited about.

The fabrics I’m working with are Kona cottons in Blueberry, Tomato, and Sable along with selections from the Retro Animal Party line by Amy Schimler for Robert Kaufman and a few from Boy Oh Boy by David Walker. Here’s a better shot of them.
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I think I’ll use a log cabin style block for this one. I love log cabin blocks, and they showcase the fabrics beautifully!

I’m gonna work on this entrelac knitting until my Kona cottons come in!

-K