An Anniversary

My guy and I just celebrated our 21st Anniversary?!  Last year we went to Rome and this year . . .  well, we went to Home Depot.  Not every day is wine and romance but enjoying both the thrills and mundane together.  I have to take the opportunity to brag on him a bit.  Not only is he a great dad and husband, a wonderful carpenter and plumber, he also has been voted EMS doctor of the year twice in the last 10 years for our county.  The last time he won the award  for saving the life of an off duty police officer who was drowning because of foot entrapment on a river that my guy was white water kayaking.  He’s a keeper.

 

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Because I’m Happy

A little early for “Success Saturday”, but definitely in lieu of “Failure Friday”, I finished up my hand-stitched “Happy” shirt and must admit it makes me happy.   While running errands all over town today I’ve also gotten lots of smiles from passersby so I think it is making them happy too. 😉  The shirt is completely hand sewn using a running stitch around the reverse appliquéd letters, felled seams and a herringbone stitch around the neckline and arm holes.  It was easy peasy and I’m excited to try some more hand stitched every day shirts.  My friend Bianca is the genius behind it all.  You can buy the shirt kit from her Etsy store here:

DIY Kit to make a Happy Reverse Applique Tee. by ThanksImadeThem.

 

 

A Project Fail – Where’s Waldo?

We’ve all had failed projects right? Please tell me I’m not alone. At least yesterday’s project gave me a chuckle. I brought home an awesome T-shirt honoring Roy Lichtenstein with visions of adapting it into a tank. Cut, cut, sew, tie . . . And all I can think of is Where’s Waldo? :). The vision is made complete with my husband’s reading glasses that I am now borrowing all too often. What happened to my perfect sight? Anyway, laughs are so good and I have learned a ton from my “fails” along the way. Do have any good fails? Pictures get you extra double bonus points.

Hillary

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Friends Make Me Happy

What a whirlwind week this has been.  While my family and I have been exploring Virginia and DC, I got on board the Instagram train (@entropyalwayswinsblog) and joined as you know, the Blogger’s Quilt Festival for the first time.  Instagram is so much fun! I had no idea there were that many talented artists out there?  The entry was made especially fun by a warm welcome from the amazingly gifted Stephanie of Spontaneous Threads.  Check her blog out here:

Spontaneous Threads.

Between scouting out all these amazing people on IG and Flickr, I don’t think I’ll be sleeping anytime soon.  🙂

And this quilt festival . . . oh my goodness, these quilters are so inspiring! Prior to this, I had never seen a quilt festival nonetheless entered one.  Imagine my shock to find out that my Kaffe quilt was nominated among all these beauties for the Viewer’s Choice Awards?!  I am honored beyond measure.

Be sure to check out all the great quilts and if you are tempted to vote, the link to the Viewer’s Choice Award is here:

Viewer’s Choice :: Nominate & Vote Here! | Amy’s Creative Side.

The Modern Quilt group here:

Blogger’s Quilt Festival :: Modern Quilts | Amy’s Creative Side.

The Original Design group here:

Blogger’s Quilt Festival :: Original Design Quilts | Amy’s Creative Side.

Lastly, my crazy stylish friend Bianca, partly on my prompting, has listed her Reverse Applique and Trapunto shirt kits and completed shirts (shown above) on Etsy. I can’t wait to get started on mine upon my return to California. Her etsy shop is here:

DIY Kit to make a Happy Reverse Applique Tee. by ThanksImadeThem.

So many reasons to be Happy!

Hillary

Basting and a Retreat

Tomorrow, I get to hop on a plane and spend four days without folding laundry, working in the ER, making dinner, helping with homework or doing dishes.  I am one of several women in my medical group picked to go to a conference on Women’s Health in Arizona!  It has been a few years since I have had a weekend away from the family and I am pretty excited (though also a little guilty-a mama’s curse).  In addition to learning some new medical info, a retreat to me means sleeping in, reading, exercising AND doing some crafting.  I am toting along a needle turn applique project I have wanted to try using  a pattern by Carolyn Friedlander and fabric by Maze and Vale.  Wonder how I will explain to my colleagues that I have to check a bag, not for extra clothes but to accommodate my embroidery hoop, needles and scissors? 🙂

carolyn friedlander | fresh, modern quilt patterns.

Maze & Vale.

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Have a great weekend all.

Hillary

Needle Turn Applique with a Message

My friend Bianca is a gal with never ending style.

Thanks! I made them!.

She is smart, an amazing seamstress and a good sewing buddy (albeit long distance). Several months ago she was understandably upset when a clothing designer she has supported and championed for many years came out with their new seasonal line featuring many of their clothes in the color “Nude”. The light sand color that was being shown did not resemble her “Nude” or that of most of the world frankly. It has made me think much about the power of the words we use and how important it is to use them wisely.

With this in mind, I have been drawing up several projects for what I will call my “Nude” series. The first is an attempt to make a dress incorporating many “Nude” colors. I did Needle turn appliqué for the first time and am itching to do more. I used a fabric pen to write my message (forgive my messy doctor handwriting). I think I will make this into a wall hanging. There is nothing like a good message for creative inspiration.

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Pinned and Explored

Although work has kept me from sewing and knitting much this week, it has certainly been fun from a creative standpoint.  One of the pics of my Sew Together Bag was picked up on Flickr Explore.  Although this is not the most accurate mark of a great picture it is fun none the less having so many people fave and look at your photo.

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I was “Explored” one other time in the last year for one of my Noodlehead totes. It all inspires me to step up my photography game and to finally buy and learn photoshop.

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To see a true photographer’s work, check out my brother who has been “Explored” 16 times in the last year!

Flickr: CraigGoodwin2’s Photostream.

On another front, one of the pictures I took from a trip to Pompeii last year was pinned by Audi Italy and the ABC/Disney Creative Development Group. It’s been pretty fun to see this picture take off like it has with thousands of Pins.  On a weird note, I have seen my picture obviously modified and repinned.  All my creative work is just for my own fun but it has me wondering how others who make their living from photography and creative work feel about this kind of thing.

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Our kids are out of school next week and my husband and I are working a ton to cover everyone else who has the week off.  It has me feeling a little sorry for myself so I have been reminiscing about trips we made last year.  The title pic was one my husband took of me in Ravello, Italy last year.  Have a happy Spring Break everyone.

This and That

Spring is showing herself in big ways.  We are loving walks (when it is not pouring-Yay rain!) along our country road watching our neighbor’s newborn calves and soaking up all the flowers in bloom.  It is SO green here which is a nice thing to see for this Seattle transplant as we will soon enter the dry, very warm part of the year in northern California.

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Spring has inspired me to start some new projects. I have several in the works, some just completed and other fun plans in store. 🙂

First I must share this little beauty my crafty aunt sent to me. It was in exchange for a bag I made her several months ago. My picture is not the best but the lovely lady says “Beautiful Transparent Wings”. She will fit nicely in my sewing space.

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I finished lining my recent Noodlhead Duffles and sent them off to my nieces with some other handmade goodies. I really like how the lining adds more heft to the bags and it was fun to find complimentary fabrics.

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I also recently finished a sweater for a friend’s child. I made the five year old version in FrogTree Periboo Worsted in Grey and Pink. This yarn is dreamy and I will certainly knit with it again in the future. The pattern can be found here:

Ravelry: Colorblock pattern by Karen Borrel.

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In the embroidery arena, I’ve been doodling a little with french knots again. Loving this handwork and I need to make time to do more!

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I’ve also indulged in several new fabric purchases in the last few weeks. (I am such a bad girl as I am bursting at the seams in fabrics but fabric hoarding is a disease I suffer from).  I especially treasure the handprinted fabrics from Leslie Keating and Umbrella Fabrics.  Australia must have magic in the water that helps folks produce such lovely handprinted fabrics.  I am hooked!

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The last two pictures are of Umbrella prints trimmings.  Every year the fabric company has a competition challenging people to use their trimmings in different ways.  I have several ideas in mind but not sure they will make it to fruition.  We shall see.  Contest details here:

Umbrella Prints: 2014 Umbrella Prints Trimmings Competition.

A Monster Parade

Sometimes it’s nice to have your clothes match your mood.  And when I am feeling a little beastly on the inside, it always cheers me up to wear a monster on the outside.  Over the years, one of my favorite go-to gifts for adults and kids has been monster sweatshirts made out of towels and velveteen.   In making the shirts I usually find inspiration in cartoons and pictures my kids have drawn. My kids and nieces still delight in finding their monster drawings transform into a sweatshirt.  With an image in mind, I made a couple of these sweatshirts today, one for a toddler and one for an adult.

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I regret not having taken pictures over the years of all the different versions of this shirt I have made. Here are a few that we wear regularly at home. They are guaranteed to get a laugh from passersby when worn. 🙂

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An Addition to My Inheritance

Many moons ago, my grandmother and mother taught me how to knit and sew. Every Christmas and birthday as a child, Grandma LiLa would make my brother and I handmade toys and clothes. When my knitting skills progressed she made me my own knitting needle roll which I use to this day. When she died I inherited her own knitting needle rolls, needles and all. To say I have an impressive collection is an understatement.

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I love these old rolls as they remind me of her and cause me to reflect and appreciate the skills and interest in making things with my hands that she passed on. Even with all this storage, my cirucular needles have been hanging out in a large, beat up freezer bag. After perusing Jeni Baker’s blog (In Color Order: Recent Sewing Projects) I found a pattern (Circular Knitting Needle Wallet PDF Pattern by TheCraftJunky) that was perfect for what I had in mind. This is a great project for fat quarters so I pulled together several complimentary Kaffe blue fabrics and sewed it up. Such a fun and easy project.  Happy Friday everyone.

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