Thursday, March 31, 2011

Racked with indecision....

I'm having a dilemma of the best kind. A few weeks ago I bought myself two charm packs of Bliss because the yardage in the prints I like best is difficult to find, and I can't find any jelly rolls or layer cakes (well, at least a few weeks ago I couldn't). I'm super excited to hack into this, but I must wait as I have a gaggle of custom orders to get moving on. But I need a little time anyway because I can't decide on a pattern. That's where you come in, lovelies. I've found two patterns/tutorials I like, but I can't decide which the Bliss would look best in.

Cluck Cluck Sew made this one using Bliss:

I would make this without the large flower because I don't think I could make a flower look that good. I like how it's so random, and the charm squares are cut into smaller rectangles to maximize print spread (I just made that term up, by the way).

And Melissa Corry at Happy Quilting designed this for the Moda Bake Shop:

This one will make the quilt a little larger because of the strips, and it might keep the prints from running together so much. It's also more square than rectangular as the first one is.

I need you to give a girl some help and let me know which one you think would look best and will showcase this delicious fabric best. Would you mind leaving a comment on if you think I should go with the first or the second option? It's not going to be a large quilt, but I don't want it to be. In my head it's backed in aqua and bound in red and white polka dots (which might go best with the bottom one?). But if you have other suggestions I'm wide open to them. Thanks folks! Have a happy Frideeeeee!!!

Spring Fling: The Dozenth Day (wherein I make up words)

Spring Fling is winding down--we're in the home stretch now! But there is still some awesome and adorable stuff coming your way so keep checking back!

Today we have the following bits of fun:

Susie at Puddle Jumper Creations has this adorable set of vintage-inspired Sunbonnet Sue flour sack dish towels to give away. Want!!

Renee at Strokes of Magic is giving away a hand-painted window sill sitter. Love the cute little face!

Hop on over and give a holler if you're interested in a shot at these. Good luck!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011


Last week, the delightful Krista from While He Was Napping (you might recognize that name--she's a Spring Flinging blogger too!) gave me TWO awards: The Versatile Blogger award and The Stylish Blogger award. Thank you for thinking of me, Krista!! So sweet of you!!

There are some unflinchingly rigid rules that come with such honors:
  1. Thank and link back to the person (or people) who awarded you this award
  2. Share 7 things about yourself
  3. Award 15 recently discovered great bloggers
  4. Contact these bloggers and tell them about the award
 Since I have two awards here I guess I have to share fourteen things about myself, so here goes.

1. I cannot dance. If it's a dance with steps I can manage; if I'm supposed to freestyle forget it.
2. I cannot walk in heels. I look like a truck stomping around when I try and my ankles get all jiggly. I don't need to wear them because I'm almost 5'9, so I make that my excuse. Besides, I do love ballet flats.
3. My favorite books when I was little were the Little House books. I could read them all again right now, true story.
4. My favorite grown-up :) books are the James Herriott series (the English country veterinarian?) I hid them behind my algebra textbook in high school and read during class. I'm so naughty....
5. In the book 'The Godfather' pages 27 through 29 are about the scene where Sonny and the's Connie's wedding and....they sneak away....and then....ok I'm too embarrassed to write it here but I wasn't too embarrassed to bring it to school and read it aloud to my chemistry class when our teacher was absent one day. Even the substitute was enthralled (I accidentally wrote prostitute instead of substitute first--I was tempted to leave it there just to see how many 'what kind of school did you go to?' comments I would get).
6. I used to bite my nails HORRIBLY and then one day I just stopped.
7. Fresh mozzarella cheese and tomatoes are my favorite. I could eat them all day.
8. If I were to choose my college major right now, knowing who I am and what intrigues me, I would choose something businessy and open a sewing shop, or I'd major in forensics and criminology--I love CSI, NCIS, Criminal Minds, that sort of stuff.
9. The only movie that bugs me in a scary way is 'Silence of the Lambs.'
10. I took piano lessons for eight years. I play like I took them for eight minutes.
11. My mom is my best friend.
12. Narrow-minded people frustrate me.
13. Christmas is my favorite. I honestly miss it when it's gone.
14. I'm wicked allergic to cats, and snakes freak me out. I can't even look at them on TV--seriously? what MOVES like that?!?! Blech.

OK--I'm going to break the rules here for this part.  Thirty bloggers is a lot of bloggers to choose and notify. So I'm going to cheat a little--I'm going to leave it to you--if you want it/them, go for it. If you take part I'd love for you to leave me the link to your post--I like learning juicy little tidbits about the people who make up my bloggy world :)

Spring Fling--Day Eleven

I cannot beLIEVE it has been almost two weeks since this started! I just love the variety of things that people have been giving away--I think there has been such a nice mix of different projects and styles that everyone should have been able to find something they liked.

Anywhodiddlydoo--here are today's giveaways:

Kristina at B. Inspired, Mama! is giving away a gift certificate to her fun vintage shop. The teaser photo alone brings back memories.

Delina at Dew This! is giving away a set of decorative tiles. I love this rainbow one!

Good luck! And Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

March of the Tools: Circle Scissors

March is almost over (can you believe that?), so this is my last post for March of the Tools. However, since I love nifty gadgets I might just make my own party called April Tools (see what I did? tools instead of fools? see?...see?).

Remember when I made these paper globes for Valentine's Day? I had a claw hand for a day or two from cutting out all of those circles. I was seriously regretting not buying a circle punch, but then it would only work for one size, and that's not very efficient. So I went on a casual hunt for a versatile cutting tool. And in one of my favorite places (Target) I came across this:

This nifty little number will cut precise circles from one inch up to six inches, in 1/16 of an inch increments. That's a LOT of options, yo. Each measurement is laid out in a big spiral on a thick piece of plastic with triangular holes cut into it.

It reminds me a little bit of those Spirograph thingees that I had when I was younger. Anybody else remember those? Or am I just getting old?

The other piece that comes with it has a triangular piece that fits into the hole, and also contains the blade.

Sorry for the ick photo--but you can still make out the blade.

The blade retracts when you've finished cutting as you need to press down to make your cut. I dig retracting blades big-time. Many of us have little fingers around that like to get into everything (or short fat fingers that are just clumsy...ahem....) so safety features like this are nice to have in a tool. 

All you do is put that pink triangle into the slot that indicates your chosen measurement. Press down, give it a spin, and BAM! Perfect circle.

It sits down enough that it doesn't slip out of the hole when you spin it.

It IS easier to cut towards the center as the edges of the circle hold the paper very steady, but as I needed many circles from each piece I went towards the edge. I spun the little hickey without pressing down to make sure I had enough room, and then made my cuts.

When cutting near the edge you have to make sure you press firmly so the paper doesn't get the wiggles.

I was able to get an entire sheet of perfect circles. (Fun fact: the company I work for makes all different kinds of metal cans; when the pieces for beverage can lids are cut out of a giant sheet of metal it looks something like the below. We call that a 'skeleton' in the biz).

My skeleton has a hanging chad (haha--I can make anything sound naughty :)

There is one thing to be aware of. You see that circle with the hanging piece of paper just below the middle in the photo above? If the paper moves even a wee bit you end up with an irregular cut. Most of the time you can fix it very easily with a snip of the scissors, but sometimes you get a rotten circle. But unlike apples, the rest of the bunch doesn't get spoiled. It definitely isn't something that would make me not use this; it's just something to watch for.

To give you an idea of what a timesaver this little device is--it took me 2 nights to trace and cut all those circles before. I cut the same amount in about 15 minutes. Total. And much more precise.

I love little piles of things like this. It just invites creativity.

There are several different brands of these cutters out there--Fiskars, Martha Stewart, etc. (Target online has all three). They are sold in craft stores where you might be able to get it cheaper or to use a coupon, but I tend to be a bit impulsive sometimes and didn't shop around at all once I saw this kind of thing existed. I would have but I needed it that instant (you know how that goes). It does come with a few extra blades, but these are super easy to find online as well. If it's something you think you'd use I definitely recommend it.

I think poker would be a lot more fun to play if this is what the chips looked like. 

I'll share my project as soon as it's totally finished. I thought I was headed towards another craft fail, but this one worked out satisfactorily. See you soon!

Spring Fling: Day Ten - and a Winner!

Mornin'. How y'all doin' this fine Tuesday? Well, ain't that jus' dandy! I'm real glad to see ya, cuz we got ourselves some giveaways to announce in this here space :)

Firstly, why don't yuns go give a halloo to Brooke at Girl Boy Girl Inspired? Word in these here parts is that she's lookin' to give ya this glass pendant necklace and a sir-prise. Wooo-eeee!

 Then mosey on over to Ashley Creations to win yourself a loopy bow. It'll look right pretty, I do reckon.

Now, let's get ourselves on to o-fficial business. Some of yuns entered a giveaway, didn't ya? Ah thought that might be the case. So I guess you're wantin' to know whose number came up in the drawin' this mornin'. Seems to me that when I plugged some numbers into this here random number generator, it done picked out:

By my figurin' that means that Brenda from Deck the Halls of Home With Joy is the lucky winner! 'Gratulations! I'll be in touch so you can claim yer winnings!

(I promise I will never write a post like this again unless I am somewhere stereotypical of such language. I think I inhaled too many glue stick fumes, bwahahaha. Back soon!).

Monday, March 28, 2011

Spring Fling - Day 9 already (wow!)

Hi. It's Monday. Boo to that. Here are some giveaways.

Rock N Regalia wants you to step into spring with this flirty, romantic necklace.

And Two Plus Jilly is offering up a custom appliqued shirt.

Just a reminder: my giveaway ends tonight at midnight. You can enter here.

I've had some coffee since the beginning of this post and yippeee!!!! It's Monday!!! The start of another WORK week!!! Have a great day everyone!!!!  :)

Sunday, March 27, 2011

If the subject is craft fail I earned an A

A few weeks ago I had this "great" idea for a craft. It would be pretty easy, kind of fun, and be really adorable when it was finished. I even took pictures along the way because OBviously it was going to be so nifty everyone would want to make one. I am going to do this reverse tutorial style: I'll show you what I did but then ask you not to make one, haha.

OK, so at AC Moore I bought this:

I sanded smooth all the rough edges and then made a copy. Then, I used an Exacto knife to cut out all the individual parts. This was not easy. It caught and tore, and then I realized for what I was doing scissors would be fine. I just really wanted to sound all crafty by saying I used an Exacto knife.

I got out my big stack of scrapbooking papers and cut out the individual pieces in different colors. I cut each one about 1/8 smaller all the way around than my paper copy. I used a Sharpie to draw on the eye and the wing and the markings on the bow. I placed them where I wanted them and then I Mod-Podged them in place. I also think I wanted to say I used Mod Podge on a project because I never have before and Exacto knives and Mod Podge are the hallmarks of a true crafter, doncha know....

OK. So at this point I cut out everything smaller and Mod-Podged it down. Then I got this stuff:

I'll tell you now what I was envisioning and still thought was going to happen. I thought that I'd do this nifty faux stained glass thing but with paper instead of glass. Now that I'm writing it I guess it would be more like a mosaic...  And I'll tell you right now I was not under the influence of any substances whatsoever while I was dreaming this up. I took the snow texture stuff and filled in all the gaps and went around the edges with it. Then I started getting the uh-oh feeling. Instead of having a more concave feel like with a mosaic or anything resembling anything that could be confused with stained glass, what I was doing was building little painted snow drifts all over my little wooden chick. It wasn't having the exact effect I wanted, so for some reason I decided to paint the remaining wood white. I don't have a picture of this part, but if you will imagine an Easter chick running through a blizzard it is pretty much exactly what I had. You can kind of get a hint of it here:

I left it out to dry and walked away from it for a bit. I really hate to trash anything I've spent time on, so I was going to name it 'Chicken in a Blizzard' and pretend it was some kind of original artwork or something. Then my mumsy says "I think you need some green or something." OK. I've got green paint. So I painted the wooden parts green, and then lightly dabbed it all around the edges. It makes it look much more springy but it definitely has a what-the-hell-is-that kind of aura about it....

So yeah....compared to what was in my head this is a huuuuuge craft fail. But as far as being a salvageable Easter decoration I think it's ok. I'm pretty sure everyone will think my nephew made it, but I'll slip him some $$$ to take the credit because it's really good for a kid craft but absolutely terrible for his aunty who should really know better at this point...

And since I have no shame I am linking up my craft fail this week. Because sometimes, someone's gotta do it.

The Girl Creativecraft
Sumo Sweet Stuff
Running with Glitter
Anything Related
monogramIron Violet Designs
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