I usually try to have a transportable project to work on; meaning I can do it while I’m waiting somewhere or riding in a car. I’ve done English Paper Piecing, Crocheting, and Knitting. Now I’ve moved on to embroidery.

My friend Jaime gave me an embroidery patter a while ago and I’ve kept it in the back of my mind. Finally, I inherited a small embroidery hoop and then went and bought some linen, needles, and floss from Modern Makers. The linen is Robert Kaufman. The needles are Tulip. And the floss is Aurifloss.

 

Embroidery

 

I’m not great embroiderer…yet. This is just a backstitch, but there’s definitely room for improvement. I still like it, though.

 

Embroidery

 

I actually finished one more on my way back from visiting my parents and grandparents this weekend, but there’s no picture. Next time. :)

Besides that, I needed a tote bag for the gym. I occasionally work out over my lunch break at our company gym. I tell everyone that I make working out super accessible. I have a free gym at work. I have a free gym in our building. And I pay for a gym that’s only a block from our house. The gym at work and the paid gym have classes. The paid gym has the most and the best equipment. Anyway, I needed a bag that I could cart my clothes and shoes in. The thing is, though, I don’t want my bag to smell or get gross. I was using a Pleated Purse Tote from the School of Sewing that I had made, but I kept having to put everything in a plastic bag. So, I decided to make another Pleated Purse Tote using cotton vinyl for the lining.

 

Pleated Purse Tote

 

The outside is still cotton, but the lining and handles are cotton vinyl. I left out the interior pocket and boxed the corners instead of rounding them. It helps it sit on the ground better.

 

Vinyl

 

Honestly, the cotton vinyl isn’t my favorite thing to work with. I have a plastic foot that helped, but I’m still not a fan. I don’t think I’ll be using it much. Stitches skipped when I was topstitching. I need to topstitch again, but I was over it then. Also, it doesn’t stretch the same as cotton and it was slightly bigger than the outside piece, so there are some puckers on the inside. It’s not the prettiest and I’m definitely not proud of it, but it will do.

And one more thing because I’m now a crazy cat lady. :)

 

Cat Quilt

 

I made another cat quilt. I used the Whiskers pattern from Six White Horses. The green/yellow/neon/chartreuse color is a peppered cotton. The gray is a textured cotton. I echo quiltd the crap out of it. The pattern is paper pieced and I had some trouble with the whisker part and then the echo quilting totally made my borders wavy. Apparently mediocrity is my goal right now. I need to step it up. I have some apparel sewing planned and I’ll have to step it up for that.

When my sister was getting married, my aunt and uncle did an awesome thing. They brought me fabric. It was really awesome of them to think about me when it really was my sister’s time. It made me feel pretty special.

Anyway, they brought me a bundle of Tsuru, which I was already interested in, but really spurred my Rashida obsession. I’m so happy she’s part of Cotton & Steel now, but I am devastated that Tsuru will likely never surface again.

I love that fabric. LOVE it. If I had tons of money, I would spend hours on Etsy finding it and buying all of it up. Washi was great, but Tsuru is my gold.

I saved my Tsuru. I wanted a very special project for it. It took a while, but I finally decided that special projectd would be a Swoon quilt. The quilts that I saw completed were stunning. It was a phenomenon. And they were all stunning. Plus, it wasn’t an easy quilt, but it wasn’t incredibly complicated.

I cut all of the fabric and made a block.

 

Swoon

 

 

It was fabulous. I loved it. I couldn’t wait to make more, but it wasn’t a pressing project, so it was something I would only work on occassionally.

Finally, at a retreat, I busted it out.

 

Swoon

 

 

I still haven’t gotten it quilted because I want it to be specially quilted.

After that, I still had a few previous scraps left. The scraps from the quilt became a small HST wall hanging, which I strated and finished at another retreat.

 

HSTs

 

 

But I still had more leftovers. With the odd rectangular scraps, I made a little mug rug with a flanged binding.

 

Mug Rug

 

Mug Rug

 

With the leftover large pieces, I cut them down to 2.5″ squares and made another wall hanging or something like that. And then I used tiny tiny pieces (1.75″) to make just a small quilted thing that I’ll probably hang in my sewing room.

 

Tsuru

 

Tsuru

 

Tsuru

 

And now I’m completely out of Tsuru. It’s sad, but I’ll probably eventually busy some on Etsy. I’ll cave. And I’ll hoard it forever.

#Hashtag

If you don’t already know, we got a kitten. A hairless one. A sphynx. His name is #Hashtag and he is 12 weeks old…almost 13.

Background: Andrew has been talking about a pet for a long time. We contemplated a black pug for awhile. At some point, we were interested in Russian Blue cats. But I was adamant that I wouldn’t have hair in my house and that a lot of our friends are allergic to cats so they wouldn’t be able to come over as often. As for a dog, that was an easy no because we aren’t home during the day and I would hate to take a dog out in the middle of winter. A cat was a little more logical, but then I wasn’t sold on the litterbox situation. Plus, hair. Hair everywhere. I’m kind of a clean person. Andrew says we live in a sterile environment and it’s mostly true. Hair would kill me.

But Andrew found a solution. Sphynx don’t shed because they don’t have enough hair to shed. Of course, they’re a special breed so they come with other complexities (like needing to be bathed and being cold), but the hair was the key factor. It took four years of Andrew talking about them before I finally agreed. I found a breeder nearby and she had a one week old male kitten. It was perfect. We had to wait until he was 12 weeks. That wait was brutal.

 

Hashtag

 

 

I fell in love with his blue eyes and frowny face. His color is seal point, which mean he resembles a Siamese. It’s a very pretty color.

 

Hashtag

 

Hashtag

 

These are all pictures that the breeder sent us periodically. While we were waiting, we did a lot of research. We both read a book specifically about caring for Sphynx cats and kittens. We learned how to clean their ears and eyes. We learned how to keep them warm and give them baths. We learned how to clip their toenails. And we learned just a bunch of stuff about cats.

Also, if you know Andrew and I, we are pretty certain we aren’t having children. So a pet would really be the center of our lives. Our friends know this and they know that this was a pretty big step for us. We had been talking about a Sphynx for a long time and they were always encouraging us to get one. So…we had a kitty shower!

 

Kitty Shower

 

 

My friend, Amy, planned it and it is easily one of the best things somebody has ever done for me. It was legit. It was a real shower. She had all of my favorite foods and drinks (sushi, fruit, brownies, cheese, Radler, popcorn, peanut butter M&Ms). We played games. There were gifts; we got some really great gifts. My parents were there!

 

Kitty Shower

 

 

She decorated our club room. She had invitations. She used my favorite color: aqua. She used gold which is currently my on-trend favorite color.

 

Kitty Shower

 

 

We had a lot of awesome friends show up and other people sent gifts. I was so happy. A good number of the people at the shower were actually some of the first people to meet #Hashtag. Amy actually was the first person besides Andrew and I, which is totally appropriate.

We had a blast, but it made waiting for him even harder! Finally, we were able to get him. We had the house cat-proofed. We had a pheromone dispensor so he would be more at ease. We had toys and litter and food and clothes. We were ready. I even made quilt for him.

 

Hashtag Quilt

 

So here he is. This is picture overload.

 

#Hashtagthesphynx

 

#Hashtagthesphynx

 

#Hashtagthesphynx

 

#Hashtagthesphynx

 

#Hashtagthesphynx

 

#Hashtagthesphynx

 

#Hashtagthesphynx

 

#Hashtagthesphynx

 

#Hashtagthesphynx

 

I worked from home the first day and Andrew took vacation the second and third days. Then it was the weekend and we were home with him. We were worried he wouldn’t be used to us being gone, so we took a few hours each day to leave. He does not like us being gone. He howls! We have to trick him into going to sleep before we leave so he won’t make a ton of noise.

Also, he meows ALL OF THE TIME. If we aren’t paying direct attention to him, he meows. We can be sitting next to him and if we aren’t petting him or looking at him or talking to him, he meows to get our attention. He’s a little (LOT) spoiled. It’s been two days since we haven’t been home all day and I think he’s doing OK. I went home over lunch the second day and I plan to go home again today. I won’t be able to the other days this week. We’ve been trying to spend a lot of time with him at night.

He sleeps with us pretty much through the entire night. Right between us or buried under the covers between us. He’s pretty cute when he sleeps. He also loves to sleep on laps. He sleeps on Andrew’s all of the time while he playing video games and he’s slept on mine twice while I’ve been sewing.

He has toy mice that he loves. They were the popular gift at our shower and it’s a good thing because he LOVES them. He’s already lost one. We introduced the laser pointer to him last night and that was extremely fun. He’s so cute trying to chase it.

Tonight…he gets a bath. :)

Again, I participated in Me Made May. It’s where you make a commitment to wearing handmade items throughout May. I committed to wearing one item per day.  So here it goes…

Me Made May

Day 1 and Day 24

Me Made May

Day 2

Me Made May

Day 3

Me Made May

Day 4

Me Made May

Day 5

Me Made May

Day 6

Me Made May

Day 7 and 29

Me Made May

Day 8

Me Made May

Day 9

Me Made May

Day 10, 18, and 25

Me Made May

Day 11

Me Made May

Day 12

Me Made May

Day 13

Me Made May

Day 14

Me Made May

Day 15

Me Made May

Day 16

Me Made May

Day 17

Me Made May

Day 19 and 20

Me Made May

Day 21

Me Made May

Day 22

Me Made May

Day 26

Me Made May

Day 27

Me Made May

Day 28

Me Made May

Day 30

Me Made May

Day 31

I know that I totally suck. I have been so busy lately, that I haven’t even really thought about this blog. I’ve heard that as you get older and as you advance in the workforce, time just starts getting away from you. Well, I think I’m beginning to see that. If that sounded negative at all, I totally don’t mean it that way. I’m 100% in love with my job and my life right now. I don’t feel overwhelmed (most of the time) and I still have plenty of time for the gym, myself, and sewing, but the time I used to have outside of that (that I used for this blog) has definitely gone away. So I’ve been sewing, but mostly on things I can’t talk about yet. Still I have some things and events to show off, so here’s my lengthy catch up in no particular order. :)

 

Yoshi

 

I crocheted a Yoshi for Andrew. This was by far the lengthiest crochet project I’ve ever done. It was probably also the hardest, but I think I’m at the point where nothing is really hard when it comes to crochet. He had a ton of parts. One head, one nose, three patches, one eye piece, three spikes, one shell, one tail, two arms, eight fingers, two legs/boots, one body, and a chest piece. I used a pattern I found on Ravelry. It was a really great pattern. I won’t be making another crocheted item like this for a long time, but I am super proud of it.

 

Dresser Runner

 

 

Pebble Quilting

 

 

I think I showed a picture of the top of this before it was quilted. Anyway, I quilted it and bound it and now it sits on our dresser. I love the Peppered Cottons. They feel so nice. I catch myself running my finger across it as I walk past the dresser. I also love the tiny pebble quilting. That was fun.

 

HSTs

 

I think the same goes for this one. I showed a pic, but not a completed one. So that’s it. :) This hangs on my quilting room wall.

 

Mom's Bed

 

So I didn’t make this, but my mom did and it’s so pretty that I wanted to show you. She pieced the quilt top, Jessica Toye quilted it, and my mom just recently finished the shams. I think she’s also planning to make some decorative pillows out of the leftover scraps. Also, she has a wall hanging that matches to quilt as well. I think it’s super pretty.

 

Baby Quilt

 

And here’s the finished baby quilt for my second cousin’s new son, Colt. This Yellow Brick Road pattern goes together so quickly. I just stippled it.

 

Knit Cowl

 

I think I mentioned before that I am trying my hand at knitting. This is my second project. Well, it was actually my first but I completed it after my second one. It was supposed to be a scarf, but I got so freakin tired of that pattern. Knitting takes forever! I completed Yoshi faster than this. Like 10 times faster. I used the Wheat Scarf pattern by Tin Can Knits. I’m going to take a knitting break for awhile.

 

Hour Basket

 

Hour Basket

 

Hour Basket

 

Hour Basket

 

Hour Basket

 

Ok. So those are all pictures of the One Hour Basket. I made the first two and Debbie made the last one. These are super easy and fast and very very useful. They fit fat quarters perfectly. I plan on making a bunch more for an upcoming event. They call for canvas and I would agree with that unless you add interfacing (like SF101) to quilting cotton.

 

Featherweight

 

 

So I bought a featherweight. :) It’s a 221 and was made in 1952. It’s in excellent condition and I’m totally in love with it. I haven’t sewn on my regular machine since getting it. I highly recommend getting one if you ever have the chance. It’s so portable and so fun and just has the perfect stitch. I love how simple it is. It’s basically the same as my treadle except with a motor. It even winds a bobbin similarly. Not only is it in great condition, but the case is, too. The case has a special Singer cover that has really kept it pristine.

 

Pleated Purse

 

 

 

Pleated Purse

 

 

 

Pleated Purse

 

 

Pleated Purse

 

Pleated Purse

 

 

So that’s a lot of Pleated Purses from the School of Sewing Book. I made the top one in the tote version. That’s my third one because they are awesome. Then Debbie made one at a retreat I hosted along with two other bags. It was a bag day for her. She also started the One Hour Basket, but finished it at home. Then I taught a class with three wonderful students who all finished their bags! They all turned out perfectly! It was only a four hour class and we finished a little early. That includes cutting. It’s a very fast project. I have another Pleated Purse in my mind to create using laminated cotton. I’m sure you’ll see that at some point.

 

Kim

 

 

This is also from the retreat I hosted. Kim is making her first quilt and she’s killing it!

 

Cathedral Window

 

I made this pillow for the Handmade Birthday Club. Denise likes V&Co. fabrics and so do I. I’ve wanted to try an easier version of cathedral windows and these are definitely it. I used Johanna Masko’s technique. My friend took her class at Quilt Con and helped me understand it. Unfortunately, Johanna only teaches her technique, she doesn’t have it published. I’m glad I was able to figure it out, but it would be nice to have a tutorial or pattern.

 

Coasters

 

 

I also made matching coasters since I had some charm pack squares left over. I found this tutorial on Pinterest.

So there you go. That’s what I’ve been up to. I have a fun announcement to make soon so look forward to that. Also, May just wrapped up so I have a Me Made May recap to post soon. Hopefully my neglect of this blog is over.

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