Friday, June 22, 2012

Paper Piecing Houses and Packaging Cookies

Happy Friday everyone! I am excited to show some whimsical paper pieced houses. I have been wanting to try these since last Christmas. I first noticed them in a smaller size as Christmas ornaments here at Retro-Mama. With stamped house numbers, they would make great house warming gifts too. Since then, I have noticed paper pieced variations of houses in all different shapes and sizes. I decided to try this one by Jennifer Ofenstein at Sewhooked for a doll-sized blanket. It is for yet another birthday gift for a friend's daughter. The one Jennifer did is called Holiday House and has a dark background fabric for a nighttime setting. I used light colored fabrics and a white background to totally change the look and feel of the house. Also, I added a floral strip of fabric at the bottom of the house for a nice flowerbed. Hedgie really likes flowers...
Hedgie is looking out the window and noticing what a fine day it is to take a walk and forage for...what do hedgies eat? Anyway, I attempted a little hand quilting on the house. Please be nice as it was my first try! For the rest of the block, I did straight line machine quilting which went much faster! I am linking this to Sew & Tell Friday over at amylouwho.
I know this guy is not a hedgehog but the store was all sold out and this guy was the closest I could find to resembling one! He's actually a Monstaz by Ganz and when pressed he makes a cute, silly sound that could drive some moms mad. My friend's daughter will really like Monstaz and blankie.

Note on July 1st:  Jennifer at Sewhooked included my blankie in her 2012 Summer Challenge contest. Please check out this link and vote for me! I'd really appreciate it!

Here is a preview of another house I am putting together using a darling fabric given to me a couple years ago. The dolls in the fabric are so darn cute. I'm thinking of making a whole quilt of these with a different doll in each window. I still need to put the roof on this one.

Lastly, I made some delicious packaging. Yes, that's right...packaging! I didn't have time to make anything homemade for my daughter's singing group's bake sale so I bought cookies at the store and packaged them using a zig-zag stitch and some selvage.

I got the idea over here at Bee in your Bonnet. She used clear, waxed paper to package homemade peanut bars that I must try soon! My husband said he saw a little boy carrying one of these around at the concert. How cute! My first thought was to use pink thread and ribbon but I didn't want to rule out the boys. They should be included in all things homemade too!

Happy sewing!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Thrift Finds, Herbs, and Sock Monkey

 At Savers this week, I found a couple vintage kitchen goodies. The first is a Pyrex covered casserole dish in Verde pattern - olive branches in a wonderful yellow-green color. I love finding Pyrex dishes with the lids still attached and in good condition. I use them to put leftovers in the fridge. It looks so much nicer than using plastic containers.

The only downside is that Pyrex dishes are not marked for microwave use so it is questionable. However, plastic containers are questionable too. Check out Pyrex Love FAQ for more info on Pyrex use. Pyrex Love is a great reference for Pyrex patterns and history.

My second find is a beautiful cast iron saucepan. At first I thought it was Le Creuset. The lid says Made in France and the color looks like the vintage flame orange. The lid says P14 and the bottom of the pan says 14. The bottom of the pan is not flat but has grill pan surface (not on the inside like the Le Creuset grill pans but underneath where the flame touches). Any idea on the history of this lovely, vintage piece?

One of my favorite summer dishes is a chicken recipe I found in a magazine a few years ago. I love to make it in the summer because it calls for herbs that I grow in my garden. It is a simple dish that looks incredible on the dinner table. Basically, make a garlic, salt and olive oil mixture; rub the mix on top of bone-in chicken thighs with skin; rub the mix underneath the skin too. Let the chicken marinate in the fridge for a couple hours. Then, get out your favorite casserole dish; add sliced lemons on the bottom, then layer your herbs - rosemary, thyme, and sage:
I had to add my new vintage cast iron saucepan to the picture even though I didn't use it in this recipe. Don't the colors look so great together? Now, place your chicken thighs on top of the herbs; add salt and pepper; cook at 425 degrees for 45 minutes to 1 hour. Enjoy!

Socks is saying have a great weekend! I had to put together a quick birthday present for my daughter's friend. She loves sock monkeys and soccer so I tied the two together. Sock monkey named Socks with his new blankie made from soccer fabric. Easy to make but extra special!


Wednesday, June 6, 2012

New Quilt, Bold Colors

I am on the next wall quilt for my other daughter's room. The colors are very different from what  you have seen me working on in the last few months. Her colors are purple, blue, and green. I pulled some fabric from my stash and added a few new ones. I started making 6" pinwheel blocks called Old Windmill from the book "200 Quilt Blocks to Mix and Match" by Davina Thomas. I didn't have a plan, just started cutting and sewing to see what would unfold. Here are a few blocks:

Really fun to use bright, bold fabric in a traditional block. So, I kept making blocks until I had enough to put together a small wall quilt.

The wall quilt is at a standstill until I make a decision on sashing. I am debating between Kona Orchid, a light purple or Kona Snow, an off white color. My daughter's room is being painted a medium purple on the main wall where the quilt will be displayed and light green on the other 3 walls. Her furniture is a cream color. 

What is your vote?

Any fabric suggestions for a border?
 If I can find a fabric with these colors in a medium to large print, I think it would really bring the quilt together nicely. I am linking this up to WIP over at Freshly Pieced.

Here is a new vintage bed sheet in my etsy shop today! This one is full of lovely pinks and peaches. 

I have been on Pinterest for a couple months now and really enjoying all the ideas and pictures. But, my favorite part is having everything I fancy organized and saved for a later date. Click on this link to find my Vintage Sheet Love board which is full of ideas and tutorials for vintage bed sheets. I can't wait to make the Giant Vintage Star Quilt for my guest bed and some vintage ties for my little nephew. 

Lastly, I leave you with some small Alpine strawberries handpicked by my daughter. They are growing all over my garden; they are so tiny that picking them takes some time. As you can see from my daughter's red fingers, she has already eaten quite a few. 

Happy sewing! 
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