Saturday, July 21, 2012

A Little Summer Sewing

I've finished another skirt using Butterick 4722.  My daughter picked out this cute fabric at Joann's several weeks ago.  It's cute, but it's directional!  I didn't realize this until I was about to cut out the pattern pieces. Luckily, I noticed the direction and made adjustments to the pattern pieces.  It wasn't difficult, but I had re-think how to lay out the pieces.  

This is the second  skirt I've made using this pattern.  Several weeks ago I made one using a blue Hawaiian-like batik.  It's a dead easy pattern!  It's perfect for a simple summer skirt for your little Princess!

Maybe I should say, "Diva!"  I've got a few more summer sewing projects in the works for this little Diva, including a halter top!  For now, though, I'm off to work on my mini charms project.  I'm hoping to finish it up this afternoon!  

Have a great weekend!

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Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Sew Loquacious's First Gluttonous Recipe

It's weird.  Whenever I'm on a diet my attention seems to gravitate toward all things FOOD!  The badder the better!  I've been pinning recipes on my Pinterest Recipes board like crazy!  I've also been digging through my recipe collection, as well as my mother's old recipe box.  Not to mention watching my favorite Southern cook, Paula Deen on television!  I've also been a little preoccupied by Christmas crafts, decorating, and baking.  This all leads to the recipe I want to share today.  I've made Beer Bread for the past several years at Christmastime.  I make loafs for my family and I also give them as gifts.  I've used a million different beers to achieve different tastes, but I've never made a sweet loaf until now.  Here is my simple recipe for  Streusel Topped Cinnamon Beer Bread:

Basic Beer Bread Recipe:
3 cups self rising flour
1 can of beer (12 oz can or bottle)
3 tablespoons of sugar (granulated/white)
and these ingredients to make it sweet:
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla

Streusel Topping:
1/2 cup flour (regular)
1/4 cup brown sugar (or 2 tablespoons Splenda Brown Sugar, which makes this less gluttonous right?)
1/2 stick of butter
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1 cup powdered sugar
1 tablespoon milk or water
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 and spray a loaf pan with non stick spray.
Combine the beer bread ingredients and mix.  It will be think and dough like.  Place into loaf pan and bake for about 20 minutes.  Make topping.  Remove from the oven and sprinkle streusel topping crumbles over the top.  Bake another 20 minutes.  Make glaze.  Remove from oven and drizzle with prepared glaze.

This bread is very much like a coffee cake, but a lot heavier. It's also very dense.  I used Bud Light when I made this loaf.  Different beers will affect the flavor as well as the color of the bread.  Adding melted butter to the top of the bread before adding the streusel topping will help to brown up the top.  I think adding fruit, like apples or raisins, to the bread batter would be great.  Also, adding streusel crumbles to the inside of the bread, like a swirl, would also taste yummy and maybe a little lighter.  If you give this recipe a try, let me know.  I'd love to hear your feedback!

In my last post I gave you a little sneak peak at my current quilt project.  Here is an even bigger peak!  Yes, those are six inch blocks I've made using the Vintage Modern Mini Charms I won from Jolly Jabber!  I've got 34 blocks finished and 20 more to go!

You might have noticed I changed up my blog a bit.  I think it looks a little more streamlined.  What do you think?  I'd love to know!  


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Saturday, July 14, 2012

Where I Create: Organized...for now.

Guess what?  I've finished cutting, sorting, and organizing my fabric scraps!  Look how clean my work desk is!  The only little pile on my desk is the beginnings of a new project.  More on that later.  First, here are my scrap bins, mostly organized by color.

I've placed my quilt fabric scrap squares in the white bins on the top two shelves.  I've also placed yardage on the second shelf.  On the bottom shelves, I have fabric for bags, purses, and clothes.  Here's a look around my studio.  It's usually not this tidy!

I love it when it is clean and organized!  By the way, all of the furniture in my studio, except the red chair, is from thrift  shops.  The white cabinet with the laminated top is a vintage kitchen cabinet.  It even has a bread drawer!

Now, what project have I started?  Here's a clue; I'm using these:

These are mini charms I won from the The Jolly Jabber, the The Fat Quarter Shop's blog.  The charms are 2.5" and are from the Vintage Modern Collection.  They are adorable!  I can't wait to show you what I'm making with these!

Hope you all are having a great weekend!

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Sunday, July 8, 2012

Ocean Waves Quilt: DONE!

Here is my finished Ocean Waves Quilt!  I'm in love with it!  It is difficult to capture how delicate the colors are in a photograph.  I used batiks from the Ocean Waves Fat Quarter Collection I got from Fat Quarter Shop.  Hop over and have a look at the entire collection!

I used a darning foot on my machine and did a meandering quilting design.  I've never done this on such a large scale before.  I had to practice a bit first.  I used invisible thread on my quilt, but I used white on my practice pieces.

I was intimidated at first, but once I got in a "groove" I felt great.  I think it turned out pretty nice and will definitely be meandering my way through my next quilts!  


I cannot wait to finish redecorating my bedroom!  I will be hanging this quilt on the wall opposite my bed.  It's going to look awesome!

I hope you all have had a fantastic weekend and wish you all a terrific week!   

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Monday, July 2, 2012


How do you bust your fabric stash?  This was part of my sewing desk a few weeks ago.  This was only part of the fabric I have been hoarding!  I pulled out all my fabric from the overflowing metal cabinet, from the large Ziplock bags I had stuffed in the closet, and from right there piled on the desk.  I decided I needed to organize my fabric.  I had so much, but I lost track of what exactly I had.  So, I checked out the book, Cut the Scraps!, by Joan Ford and got busy.  Ford calls it "Scraptherapy."  She suggests cutting your scraps into the most commonly used square sizes:  5", 3", and 2 1/2".  I started out following her directions, but then decided I don't like the 2 1/2" squares!  I don't really see myself using such small squares, so I cut mine 5", 4", and 3".  I think these sizes will work for me...for now anyway!

So, after cutting a lot my squares, I now wonder how to organize them.  I thought sorting by color would be the easiest.  But, I have run into a few problem scraps.  Here I have a pile (mostly) of reds.  Would you put the black and red squares with the mostly reds or with the black scraps?

And then there's the white with red Chinese writing squares.  Should those go into the white/neutrals bin?  Or should there be a separate bin just for Asian themed fabrics?  I did sort all my batiks into one bin.  Themes are much harder, I think, to sort by.  Color has to be easiest right?  So what color is this?

Blue?  Red?  Orange?  I don't have a bin dedicated to tie dye...this is it for my collection.  I guess I'll put these squares with my "Artist" scraps:

Unfortunately, this is my smallest pile!  I suppose I will have to have a "random" bin for the scraps that don't fit anywhere else.  I've made a dent in my stash, but I have more cutting to do.  I haven't tackled my mostly blacks yet.

So far I have squares making up mostly blues, mostly pinks, mostly browns (my biggest), mostly reds, batiks, purples, and neutrals/whites.  

Some people sort their scraps by tone.  Whether the fabric is dark or light.  I thought about organizing mine this way, but I don't think this would work for me.  I also thought about sorting by style, pattern, solid or patterned, or whether the fabric is "traditional" or modern.  In the end, I think sorting by the dominate color is best for me.  How do you organize your fabric collection?  I'd love to know!

In other news, I've finished my Ocean Waves Quilt!  I can't wait to show you!  So, stay tuned!  I need to upload the pictures I took before I post about it!