Saturday, December 17, 2011

Drumroll, Please!!

It's official - we have winners!  Before I announce the winners, I just want to again thank everyone from the bottom of my heart for stopping by my blog and entering my giveaway.  What a week!  I had so much fun reading through everyone's comments.  I responded to everyone that had an email address (at least I'm 99.9% sure I did...there were a lot of comments!).  If you didn't get a note back from me, you might want to check your settings to be sure you aren't a no-reply blogger/commenter. 

We had some great big dreams - everything from long arm machines and sergers to maids and cooks, and from trips and cruises to iPads and cameras (plus tons of other great ideas).  So fun!  I hope everyone gets at least one thing they wish for over the holidays.  I won't be getting my cook, but mostly all I want is to see my kids have a great Christmas.  Nothing compares to the magic of the holidays with kids.

Ok, I stole this next idea from a new bloggy friend, M-R of Quilt Matters. Thanks, M-R!  Since I can't give everyone a prize, even though I wish I could, I'd like to at least give you a recipe to maybe try over the holidays.  I'm sharing a classic cookie recipe that tastes oh-so-Christmasy to me:

Chocolate Crinkles

makes 72 cookies

1/2 cup vegetable oil
4 oz unsweetened baking chocolate, melted, cooled
2 cups granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
4 eggs
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup powdered sugar

Baking Directions
  • In large bowl, mix oil, chocolate, granulated sugar and vanilla. Stir in eggs, one at a time. Stir in flour, baking powder and salt. Cover; refrigerate at least 3 hours.
  • Heat oven to 350°F. Grease cookie sheet with shortening or cooking spray.
  • Scoop dough by teaspoonful and shape into balls. Drop balls into powdered sugar and roll around to coat. Place about 2 inches apart on cookie sheets.
  • Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until almost no imprint remains when touched lightly in center. Immediately remove from cookie sheets to cooling racks.
Let me know if you make them...they are so delicious - like a cookie and brownie all wrapped into one.  Does it get better?  Not in my book!

Ok, here's what y'all are waiting for!!  The winner of the set of 6 fat quarters and the 4 notecards is:
#24 - Robyn...who said "What I want most is for my laundry room I asked for last year to get built. All I need is a all to cut off the end of my garage. It's on the books for Jan 8, so hopefully nothing happens so I have to push it back! Thanks for the giveaway!"

And, the winner of the bonus set of notecards is:

#181 - Heather...who said "Hmm...well I just got myself a new Christmas present of a Janome a few weeks ago. I just look forward to spending time with my family!"

Congratulations, ladies - I will email you both shortly to get your mailing information.

Thanks to everyone who became a follower, too!  When I have a few minutes I'm going to check out all of your blogs and I promise I'll follow you back!  I have found so many fab blogs through the Sew, Mama, Sew Giveaway Days.

Be sure to check back soon and peek in on my sewing adventures.  I'm finishing up a surprise present and I've also been working on lots of blocks and whatnot for various swaps.  It might be fun to come back and see what I've been up to!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Wow - I'm Blown Away!

I want to thank everyone who has stopped by my blog and entered my giveaway.  I knew the Sew, Mama, Sew Giveaway Day Week was big, but I never in a zillion years expected so many wonderful comments!  So, a HUGE thank you to you all!

I wish I could give each and every one of you a prize.  If only I had that much fabric!  To show my gratitude, though, I have decided to giveaway a second set of embellished "Hello Betty" notecards.  I will choose the second winner from the comments in the giveaway postI'll post a picture of the new set of notecards as soon as I have a smidge of'd dreary today in New Hampshire.  Here's an OK picture of the 2nd set of  notecards...indoor pictures at not my strong suit!

Don't forget - you have until tomorrow at 5pm PST to enter all of the fabulous Sew, Mama, Sew giveaways - so go check them out!

I've had so much fun with this giveaway that I know I'll be doing more in the be sure to check back for more fun.  I love to share!

Thank you again for all of your wonderful comments - I love that everyone is dreaming big for the holidays!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Sew, Mama, Sew - Giveaway Day

If you're looking for my giveaway, you've landed in the right place.  Thanks for stopping by!

To say that I have a lot of fabric is an understatement.  By some measures, maybe it's not that much.  But for the amount of storage space I have in my house, it seems a bit extreme.  I just can't help myself.  It's all so pretty and lovely.  Leaving it in the fabric store seems such a shame, even if I don't have plans for it yet.  Maybe it's a problem...I think not.  BUT, since I seem to be busting at the seams with fabric I thought I'd share some with one of you! 

I'm giving away 6 fat quarters of Denyse Schmidt's fabulous Picnics & Fairgrounds fabric.  Fun, right?

PLUS, I'm going to include 4 notecards I embellished with Hello Betty fabric from Chloe's Closet for Moda.  I started making cards like these to give with handmade gifts and it's a really fun way to use up scraps, don't you think?  I really love how these all coordinate, too!

All you have to do to enter is leave a comment here, telling me what you want most for Christmas (or your birthday, or whatever).  It can be something realistic or a super-luxurious-never-gonna-happen-in-a-million-years gift.  I'm fairly practical at heart, but if we had the money to indulge, I'd love someone to cook for my family for a year (who am I kidding...for maybe ever).  That would be heaven!  I don't necessarily HATE's just really not my favorite thing to do.  And I always feel bad because my poor husband loves variety but I could eat pasta every day so I tend to not be very inspired in the kitchen.  I try!

Follow me if you'd like (I'd love it!) but it's not a requirement to win.  Just be sure I have a way to contact you, ok?  You don't want to miss out because I couldn't find you!  The winner will be randomly chosen on December 16th and announced on the 17th.

Thanks for playing and enjoy your holidays!

PS... I've been trying to reply to all of your comments, but I've had at least half a dozen "no reply" commenters.  If you aren't sure if you're a "no reply" commenter, please be sure to leave your email address in your comment so I can get a hold of you!  Thanks!!

PPS - Thank you all so very much for stopping by and commenting on my lil old blog.  I am blown away by the response.  And thank you to all of my new followers.  I will follow you back (once I have a minute to check y'all out!).  And, last, PLEASE make sure I can contact you!  I have gotten tons of fab comments but I feel so bad for those I can't get in touch with.  If I can't get in touch with you, I can't send you the prize if you win.  Here's a great post that explains how to make sure you're not a no-reply commenter.  I was one for a while and didn't even know it...check it out:

One last thing!  Check out my newest post...I'm giving away another set of notecards!  No need to comment on the other post.  Your comment on THIS post automatically enters you for both prizes.  Good luck!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Dreaming of Fabric

So, I get a lot of newsletters from various fabric shops. I LOVE getting them. I love to know what fun things are arriving at shops, what's going on sale, and what's coming soon. The only trouble with this is that I inevitably want everything I see. Those pretty, pretty pictures of all of that pretty, pretty fabric. Even fabrics I wouldn't normally be drawn to seem just perfect when sent to my inbox from one of the many shops I frequent (to purchase or just to drool).

I thought it'd be fun to share some of our favorites...either things you really want to buy or plan on buying, things you just bought and are totally smitten by, or just lovlies that you dream of...

These are a few of the things I'm looking forward to -

Pezzy Print Charm Pack American Jane for Moda Fabrics

Half Moon Modern Fat Quarter Bundle

Of course, there are about 50+ other lines I'm smitten by, but these are the ones calling my name at the moment.  What about you?

Thursday, December 8, 2011

A First!

I have been wanting to post this for a while, but, well, I had to FINISH it first.  I did first big quilt is done!  It began as a stack of charm packs and white yardage.  After sewing here and there for months and taking long breaks because I was terrified to baste the thing and then quilt it and then bind it - yikes!  It is now done.  And I love it and I'm pretty proud of myself.  Yes, it's ok to toot your own horn when you accomplish something fantastic!  I present to you White Diamonds in Bliss:

Here's the back...almost as fun as the front!

I thought with the gorgeous sunshine I'd be able to get awesome pictures.  I was, however, reminded once again that I am no photographer.  Even in great daylight I can't capture the beautiful colors.  You get the idea, though, right??

It all started when I caught the quilting bug last spring and started messing around with different quilt blocks and styles.  I'd find a block I wanted to try, figure out what to do with LOTS of trial and error, seam ripping, and probably cursing along the way make it, and stuff it in my "in progress" drawer, thinking that I'd get back to them someday...they're still in the drawer.  In June I decided to take the plunge and make something sizeable - I thought if I was going to spend money and time stitching away, I should probably make something I could use.  This is definitely sizable!  Look at how I had to take my pics:

Yup, I had to stand on my kids' slide to get pics from above  (don't be jealous of my fab, very professional photo studio)...this thing is big!  I still have to measure it, but I used batting for a full size quilt and there wasn't a whole lot left over.  No wonder this thing took me ages to finish!
I wanted a simple, modern design that didn't take a lot of cutting and difficult piecing.  It was scary enough to make a quilt this big.  This pattern was just the ticket (inspired by this quilt).  I used 5 (or maybe 6) charm packs of Bonnie & Camille's Bliss and cut 5" white squares to make the "diamonds".  I also had some Bliss flannel that I cut into 5" squares and mixed in.  I thought about making it a bit smaller, but didn't feel like cutting up the that and the pattern dictated the size.  I love that it's big, though...better to snuggle on the couch with the boys!

I used Mod Buds in aqua from Liz Scott's Sugar Pop line for the back, pieced together with leftover charms and some more of the flannel.  I just want to say that I cannot wait for Liz's Domestic Bliss line to arrive in stores - I am going to buy it all!

The binding is Sarah Jane's Dot to Dot in red from her Children at Play collection.  I think it works perfectly and, in my opinion, they are the PERFECT sized dots!

So, there you have it - my first big quilt finish.  I'm linking to Quilt Story's Fabric Tuesday...go check it out!

Fresh Poppy Design

Monday, December 5, 2011

Sew, Mama, Sew - Giveaway Day!

Who doesn't love a giveaway?  Come on, y'all know you do!  Well, Sew, Mama, Sew is having their Giveaway Day starting December 12th.  This is a HUGE event with tons of fabulous giveaways.  Don't let the name fool you...this giveaway lasts ALL WEEK - there are so many giveaways that it'd be impossible to do it all in just one day.  The basic rundown is you visit the Sew, Mama, Sew giveaway page and from there you follow links all over the web where bloggers and shops are giving away prizes.  The catergories include:

  • Handmade for the Home (quilts, hot pads, pillows, etc.)
  • Handmade Bags
  • Handmade Baby + Kid Items
  • Sewing Supplies (fabric, patterns, buttons, trims)
  • Other Craft Supplies
  • Handmade Accessories (hats, scarves, belts, adult clothes, etc.)

Last round I found lots of really great blogs and shops, signed up for tons of giveaways, and even won one!  This time around I want in on the giveaway fun - I have a special bundle put together, so check back here on the 12th to see what goodies I'm giving away!!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Swappy Goodness

I mentioned a couple of posts ago that I was working on three secret projects.  I felt very important to be working on things I couldn't show I was so sneaky!  I've since finished all three projects - and I can share two of them with you right now.  Don't you feel lucky?

I'm smitten with flickr swaps and bees these days.  They're just so fun!  I've met a lot of great people who also love sewing and quilting.  Then we make things for each other.  How great is that?

First I made a mini quilt for the Christmas edition of the Little Quilt Swap.  If you remember my other mini (how could you forget...I only posted about it like a zillion times!), the new mini I made is part of the same swap.  It's such a fun swap.  We have quilters from all over the world making mini quilts in all different styles.  No one knows who made what.  Then we vote on them, send out our quilt to a secret recipient, and get a surprise quilt in the mail.  Um, can you say F.U.N?

Here's the one I made:

Do you like it?  I used some of my favorite Christmas fabrics and I personally love it.  I was inspired by a tutorial from Elizabeth of Don't Call Me Betsy.  She did a block for the 12 Days Of Christmas Sampler QAL.  I took her idea and kind of ran with it.  I'll be sending this out to its new home today...hope they like it!

The second project I was working on is for the Scrappy Mug Rug Swap.  This one was a little challenging for me.  I'd never made a mug rug before.  And, this was my first time making a whole project for a partner (instead of just a block or two).  I was so nervous about getting it right.  I stalked my partner for a bit and then came up with this:

It's probably a little big for a mug rug (8x10, I think?), but I'm really happy with how it turned out.  More importantly, my partner seems to like it, too!!

And, well, mum's the word on the third project.  All will be revealed in good time!