Thursday, 9 December 2010

My timing, it is IMPECCABLE

So after four months of obsessively looking at house rental websites, booking viewings, mulling over the properties we viewed, and inevitably saying no to ALL OF THEM, we finally decided on a house!

It's like this giant leap forward in our living arrangements. The number of bedrooms stays the same, but there is more living space. Seperate rooms for different things, instead of one big room for everything! A garage to store our junk in! A driveway for our car (ie, no more fighting for parking in front of the house)! A utility room! Holy moly, a UTILITY ROOM. I will no longer have a washing machine in the kitchen, and I will have a place to store laundry during all its phases of existence (dirty - washing - drying - clean - folded) and eventually, I will have a TUMBLE DRIER, OH YES. But probably not until next winter. I am okay with waiting.

We are moving four days after Christmas. I know. Clearly, we have a busy month ahead of us. Packing, preparing for festivities (like, whipping up a few costumes for the church party! NO PROBLEM), planning a birthday party (my three year old is having an early party this year because we are moving so close to the actual date -- she turns four on the 27th -- not the best planning on our part, but what can you do), making Christmas dinner and meeting up with family in the days before we get the keys...

I fear my head might pop off with all the stress. In addition, last week we had a cold snap with icy footpaths, and I slipped on the ice, spraining my bad ankle pretty badly. It was enough to prevent me from walking the kids to school the next day, and earlier this week I kept my three year old home from nursery because while I could manage the walk twice in one day, three times in one day was just too much. I had a brainwave yesterday, though, and realised that instead of walking home after dropping her off, I could just take the baby to the playgroup next door. So I did. I have gotten very little done this week, and when I try to forge ahead in spite of my injury, I sure do feel it later. So I rest when I can.

Oh! And in addition to the relentless marching of time that is against our favour, my incapacitation and the looming holiday season, my husband is incredibly busy at work and will need to do overtime at the weekends here and there. So we won't see him on Saturdays, either! Did I mention that we only have the one car, and he needs it to get to work?

I'll be FINE. LALALA.

Thursday, 25 November 2010

Why I'm Tired by 10am

5.30am

Baby: Let's play! PLAY PLAY PLAY LA LA LA.

Me: Zzzzzzzz.

Baby: You're not looking at me. LOOK AT ME. WATCH HOW I WIGGLE.

Me: (takes baby downstairs so no one else wakes up) Zzzzzz.

Baby: Ooh, a shiny thing. I shall eat it. NOM NOM NOM. Hang on, you're not looking at me again! LA LA LA PLAY PLAY PLAY.

Me: Hello baby. You are torturing me. Thanks for that.

Baby: Tired now. Want milk. Zzzzzz.


6.30am

Me and Baby: Zzzzz.

Kid 1: GOOD MORNING, MOMMA. ISN'T IT A BEAUTIFUL DAY.

Me: Is still dark. Go 'way.

Kid 1: I need to use the toilet. I'm hungry. Watch me do this cartwheel!!!!!

Kid 2: HELLO MUMMY. I'm cold, can I put my icy extremities inside your warm blanket, waking the baby up? THANKS!!

Me: Shh. Baby is still sleeping. Please stop touching me.

Kid 3: IneedaweeIneedaweeIneedawee.

Me: So... go? (gives into fate and gets up for the day)

7.30am:

Me: Stop playing nicely and get ready for school. (Did I really just tell my kids to stop playing nicely? What twilight zone is this?)

Kids 1, 2 and 3: WAHOO! TIME FOR LOTS OF FUN PLAY TIME WHILE WE ARE STILL IN JAMMIES WITH CEREAL ENCRUSTED ON OUR FACES! LIFE IS AWESOME!

Baby: No one is looking at me. This situation is intolerable.

Me: Maybe I can manage to both eat breakfast and shower this morning?

Baby: POO! Poo is fun! Lots of poo for you, momma! LA LA LA PLAY PLAY PLAY

Me: No.

8.30am:

Me: Get your bags, kids! Lunch? Coat? Gloves? Scarf? Hat? Swimming kit? Homework? Show and Tell toy? Permission slip? Dinglehoppers and Snarfblats? Let's go!

Kids: We're so cold. We hate the world. Oh, look, a squished worm!

9.00am:

Kids are in school. Another morning survived.

Me: (haunted look)

Baby: Zzzzz. (for now)

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

Watch out, world, here she comes

As I am sitting here, chilling out with the kids and watching cartoons (as you do), I just saw my baby -- who will not be officially 6 months old until December fifth -- get up on her hands and knees and launch herself forward and face first into the carpet.

I knew this was coming, and declared that she will be crawling by Christmas. At this rate, it will probably be by next week.

I'm not sure why she's in such a rush to start crawling, though. Everyone gives her everything she could ever want. Slow down, baby girl!

Wah-Hey, it's almost Turkey Day!

Thanksgiving always sneaks up on me. I've been living in England for 11 years, and I suppose because I'm married to an Englishman and don't live in my home country, I tend to forget about Thanksgiving until the week before. Sometimes even the day before. (for shame!)

But not this year! This year we are having our American friends over with their passel of children, and we're cooking up a turkey and some yummy vegetables and PIES. It's going to be glorious.

I'm also going to give turkey brining a go. Wish me luck on that one; the turkey is such a central theme to the meal, that it's kind of nerve wracking when you try a new recipe with it. Realistically, though, when would I break out a 10lb turkey to practice a new recipe? It's do or die, starting tonight when I soak it in brine.

The kids and I made turkeys out of our traced hand shapes, and hung a sign up. They don't really have a concept of Thanksgiving (see my lacadasical attitude mentioned above), so it's just going to be a big meal with lots of running around the house with their friends.

It's going to be SUCH FUN.

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Early Morning Wake Up

My kids are painfully early risers, and it has caused no end of frustration in me over the years. I have never enjoyed waking up earlier than 7am or so, but my kids seem to think 6am is a perfectly acceptable time to start the day. They basically open their eyes and start zooming around the house at 100 miles and hour, not slowing down until bedtime.

Unfortunately for me, the baby seems to be going down a similar path. She has been waking up before 6am recently, and chatting away to herself VERY LOUDLY until I take her downstairs to her toys. There's no point in losing my patience with her (unlike with the older children, who tend to jump from the top bunk, screeching, or dump entire boxes of cereal on the floor), but it is frustrating to lose an hour of sleep when EVERYONE ELSE in the house is sleeping, but you can't because the baby is too busy practicing her crawling and paper eating skills.

By the time she is losing steam a bit, everyone else is awake and preparing their daily mayhem. Fights over who gets to use the toilet first, wandering around in their underwear for 20 minutes because they can't seem to remember where their school clothes are (check the drawer, kid!), and jumping on a sleeping Daddy are often daily occurances. One of the most annoyingly ironic things about early mornings before school, is that the kids tend to play best together during this time. I hate to break them up with my harping (GET READY FOR SCHOOOOOOOOLL!! YOU'RE MAKING ME CRAAAAAZZZZYYY), but I tend to think it's a bit of a conspiracy on their part. Maybe one of these days, I won't make them go to school at all, because they are playing so nicely together. Heh.

Basically, morning times are chaotic and full of crabby people. It's not the best way to start the day, really.

Saturday, 20 November 2010

There's a Zombie on my Lawn!

..but I've got my defences set up already..




Photobucket


Photobucket


I have never made 3D plushies before, and after extensive research on the internet, I managed to make these two little guys over the course of several days.

Anyone who is familiar with the computer game Plants vs Zombies will know that the green one is a Pea Shooter, and the blue one is a Snow Pea. They are an integral part of your basic defence systems in case of a zombie attack.

I for one feel better that they are around to defend my home. I've got a few more plants sprouting up around here, so keep your eyes peeled!

Wednesday, 17 November 2010

Little projects

Life is busy, and I am tired, but I've been slowly plugging away at a few projects. My hexagon quilt is slow going, but I knew that when I started:

It's going to be awesome when I finally finish! And yes, there is a teeny little hedgehog in the middle of the bottom right hexagon. So cute.

Speaking of cute, look at these little dollies!
Laboriously hand sewn for my daughters' Christmas presents. I originally made a gigantic (about 10x the size of these 9" dolls) version as a test run and my three year old latched onto it really quickly. I like doing the small versions, though, as I can sit around watching tv as I sew them.

Using the same pattern, I made some zombie dolls for the kids, too.


I know, y'all are probably thinking "what on earth?!" so let me explain. I recently bought a copy of the computer game, Plants vs Zombies, and its popularity in our house is nothing short of epic. The kids live and breathe this game; when they aren't actually playing it (because I dole it out in small portions and use it as a bargaining chip for good behaviour OF COURSE), they act it out and pretend to be zombies and plants. All three of them have perfected their zombie walk, and try to eat my brains regularly.

So I figured, why not capitalise on this obsession and make some toys that they will really love? The dolls don't look anything like the zombies from the game, but I am in the process of making a few plant replicas out of felt. I have zero experience creating 3D plushie toys, so it's slow going, but I'm almost finished with my first pea shooter! I will definitely post some pictures when I'm done, because I'm quite excited with how its turning out already. I think it'll be cute.

Tuesday, 16 November 2010

Life in all its intricacies

Some things my son will eat for dinner:
  • steamed broccoli
  • corn on the cob
  • mashed potato
  • pasta of any sort
  • mild cheddar cheese by the truckload
Things he will not eat for dinner:
  • any other cooked vegetable
  • salad vegetables
  • stews, chilli, curries
  • someone else's leftovers that haven't even been germified for goodness sake
Things my three year old obsesses over:
  • tv time
  • chapstick
  • nail polish
  • juice
  • receipts
  • taking baths with the baby
Things my seven year old wishes she could do:
  • wear glasses
  • wear makeup
  • reach the top shelf where we hide sweets and biscuits
  • stay up later than the other kids
  • speak French fluently
Habits my 5 month old has fallen into:
  • forgetting she can roll from her stomach to her back, getting stuck and needing rescuing
  • sleeping for 20 minutes every evening about an hour before bedtime (gathering strength, I guess?)
  • pushing herself backwards across the room while blowing raspberries into the carpet
  • smiling at everything but laughing at only her biggest sister, no matter how hard I try!
  • eating paper whenever she can
  • catching all the little colds going around this autumn (sigh)

I've been working on a few things these past months, especially Christmas gifts for the kids. I'll update with pictures soon!

Sunday, 25 July 2010

Baby keepin' me busy!

I haven't done much sewing recently; maybe a few hexies here and there, but no machine sewing since the baby was born.

Totally worth it, though! Look at this gorgeous girl! 7 weeks old, and already busting out of her 0-3 month sized babygro, Hulk style. That's my girl.

Thursday, 17 June 2010

Flowers Five and Six







Here are all the flowers together, so far. I'm liking it! Although, I think I need some I-Spy fabric, fussy-cut, to add to my collection. :)

Wednesday, 16 June 2010

Busy busy busy

Been sewing hexies, but a new baby isn't compatible with regular blogging, funnily enough!

Be back when I can.

x

Wednesday, 9 June 2010

Slightly Scrappy Flowers





I edged one of last week's flowers with white, and made two more.

Can't comment much more today, as I have a very hungry baby to deal with!

Monday, 7 June 2010

Baby Daze

A few days ago, I had my fourth baby. My older children are 7, 5 and 3 years old, and it's amazing how quickly I forget what it's like to have a new baby in the house... she's just scrumptious. I love her little noises, her wee little toes, her smell. I look at my older children in awe, because in a blink of an eye, this 2-day-old newborn will be at school and making her own way in the world with the same interminable spirit that my older three children have.

My labour experiences have been incredibly varied -- baby #1 was induced, baby #2 was emergency c-section, baby #3 was VBAC at the hospital, and baby #4 was a VBAC at home. I wouldn't change any of these experiences, because they all happened for specific reasons at the time, but I must admit that my home birth has so far been the most peaceful, easy and simple delivery of them all.

She was born at 2.33 am, in our living room. About a half an hour after her birth, my husband woke up our 7 year old to meet her new baby sister. That was such a magical moment for me. Before my youngest was even dressed for the first time, she met her older sister and started their life-long relationship together.

I am feeling pretty well myself, and am happy to report that I can bend over to pick up rubbish off the floor again! It's the simple things.

Penelope Anne, aka baby Penny, in all her chubby-cheeked, 9lbs 13oz glory:



Welcome to the world, my sweet one.

Saturday, 5 June 2010

We have a baby!

Baby #4 arrived in our living room in the early hours of the morning of 5 June.

She is currently sleeping in her Moses basket and everyone is very happy and well.

Sooo glad I'm no longer pregnant! ;)

Thursday, 3 June 2010

Cutie Pinwheel is having a giveaway!



Aren't they gorgeous?! I am selfishly hoping I win, because I think they would go well with my rainbow triangle set. I haven't been able to do any machine sewing lately, and the prospect of receiving a pile of pre-sewn blocks as adorable as these fills me with excitement and cheer!

But anywho. Get over to Cutie Pinwheel for a chance to win!

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

One Flower Wednesday: One of these things is not like the other!



My first two hexagon flowers are complete! I have such an odd assortment of fabrics, that I realised that they probably won't all go very well together in one large quilt. We'll see. I love both these flowers very much, but the one on the left has a much more old-fashioned feel to it than the one on the right.

Also, the one on the left was my first attempt at sewing hexagons together, and you can see most of my stitching peeking through. I may just chalk it up to "needing more experience" and leave it to one side when I'm making the full quilt or whatever these little flowers will turn into.

But yay! Thank you to Journey of a Quilter for kicking me into gear with my hexagons! If I can manage to keep on sewing hexagons 6 days a week and then a flower or two one day a week, I will feel like progress is ... progressing. :)

Happy Wednesday to you all. If you feel so inclined, labour vibes sent in my general direction will be greatly appreciated!

Tuesday, 1 June 2010

Big Sisters Rule! (Tutorial and Yammering, all in one)

For those of you who haven't read this blog recently, and my constant complaining yammering about being 9 months pregnant, well! My official due date is tomorrow. I have three older children, who are absolutely dying with anticipation for this baby to be born (the youngest, aged 3.5, has informed me that it is taking AGES for the baby to come). I like the idea of them getting a little gift in celebration of their new position in the family, which is one of the main reasons why I started quilting this year in the first place. I wanted to finish my eldest daughter's quilt, of course, but I wanted each child to have his/her own quilt as well. They are safely stored away at the moment, ready to be used the moment the baby makes her appearance.

Quilts are nice, but I wanted something that they could also appreciate in the here and now, and not just in the future when they realise how much work goes into quilting! (yes, I'm absolutely certain that my children will soon begin to appreciate my efforts in life... I live in a world of sunshine and roses, I do!)

When I came across this tutorial over at Moda Home Mom, I knew I had hit the jackpot. I had all the necessary supplies in my sewing desk, and she made it look super easy, which: BONUS.

Last week, I gave it a go, and it turned out thusly:



Unfortunately, the picture is a bit blurry, but you get the general idea. Cuteness! A cool t-shirt for a cool big brother! I was very happy.

However, I have two older girls, as well. They needed something to celebrate being big sisters, so I tried to make a girlie version for them. This is how I did it.

1. First of all, have a look at this link to the Big Sisters Rule template. The bubble lettering has shadows around it; I just cut that away for tracing purposes. Also, I made the bottom edge of the crown a bit wonky, to give it a more organic feel. There were too many straight lines for my taste, but if you want to have a straight-edged crown, more power to you! :)

2. Supplies needed: 4 different types of fabric. For my younger daughter's t-shirt, I used Strawberry Shortcake fabrics. So cute! For my older daughter's tee, I used two fabrics from the Hope Valley range of fabrics that I won in a giveaway recently (woot! Still super happy about that one) and two fabrics from my stash, because I'm greedy like that and didn't want to use up *too* much of my Hope Valley stuff! Also pictured, the template and some light-weight iron-on webbing. Not pictured: a t-shirt, paper scissors, fabric scissors, sewing machine, coordinating thread, iron and ironing board. All of these will be necessary. Also not pictured, freezer paper, craft knife (and suitable cutting surface), fabric paints and brush. Moda Home Mom's tutorial included ready-made iron-on letters from an American craft store. I don't know where to buy such things, so I printed out "BIG SISTERS" in a font I liked and cut them out into freezer paper to paint directly onto the t-shirts. I made a tutorial about this recently, if you want to have a quick look.



3. Cut out the images and letters from the template. Trace onto the webbing. Be sure that you follow the instructions for the webbing exactly, particularly with regards to lettering; if the images come out back to front, it's not an issue, but you don't want the letters to come out backwards!



Here is all the fabric, ready to be ironed onto the t-shirt. Whew, the letters came out the right way!



4. Again following the webbing instructions, iron on the fabric pieces where you want them to go.

Both girls' t-shirts, post ironing:






5. This is where my other freezer paper tutorial comes in. I painted the words "BIG SISTERS" on the top of the t-shirt, using freezer paper as a stencil.



Let dry overnight, if possible.

6. Finishing off! Although the fabric pieces are nicely ironed and stuck to the t-shirt, they won't stay that way forever. It's important to stitch around the edges to ensure longevity. Hopefully, your little one will enjoy wearing this so much, that it will get many, many washings!



I stitched around the Strawberry Shortcake tee with a light green thread. My 3 year old loves green and pink, and I think they go well together, myself.



I didn't use such a contrasting colour with my older daughter's t-shirt, but I didn't think the pink needed as much toning down as with the Strawberry Shortcake fabrics. It's a much more grown-up colour scheme.





And here they are, one big happy family, anxiously awaiting the arrival of their new sibling! The t-shirts are safely stored away until the baby comes. Just a little something special to mark the big changes in store for our little family.



I hope this tutorial is clear enough for you. Do have a look at Moda Home Mom's tutorial for the boy's t-shirt, which is probably much easier to read and understand! I am very grateful for her efforts, which helped me produce not only a great t-shirt for my son, but gave me the inspiration for my own girls' tees.

Now we're all ready for the baby to arrive. Patiently waiting, little one... patiently waiting!

Friday, 28 May 2010

Blogger's Quilt Festival

Amy's Creative Side is again hosting a Blogger's Quilt Festival this year. I thought I had missed the deadline, so haven't yet participated. I was wrong! Today is the last day, so I thought I'd add a quick entry to the list.



So this is my entry for the festival. I've talked about this quilt before, but I've been thinking about it recently because of my hexagon project -- a few of the scraps left behind from this quilt are making it into my hexagon box, and I had forgotten just how much I love the antique look of some of the flower fabrics.

I started this quilt with absolutely NO knowledge of how to quilt. At all. I cut my triangles haphazardly with scissors, didn't sew with accurate seams, and encountered any number of frustrations along the way as a result, of course!

However, this is the quilt that started it all. It was hiding in my "to do" pile for YEARS, and it wasn't until the beginning of this year that I decided I was brave enough to tackle it and actually finish it.

And I did! It led to me finishing off the new baby's quilt (which I technically started before I finished off this quilt, but then when I messed it up with my dire machine quilting, I realised that I couldn't let the baby's quilt hide away in my "to do" pile for as long as this one did! I was brave, and I redid half of the quilt; I was learning...), I sewed an I-Spy quilt for my son, and a filmstrip quilt for my younger daughter.

I was on a roll, and obsessively reading through the many, many quilting blogs out there full of fantastic tips, hints and tutorials to help me along the way. In fact, I've gained a bit of a reputation among my friends as the intrepid quilter; we've had quilting days and evenings, where I've taught them the techniques I've learned... a bit like the blind leading the blind, but no matter! We're having a good time. :)

My current unfinished projects are my husband's quilt, a wonky star quilt, and of course my mystery hexagon project. Current physical limitations associated with late pregnancy are preventing me from sitting at my sewing machine right now, but I'm hoping to have this baby VERY SOON (did you hear that, baby? SOON) and I'll be able to get some sewing done again at some point, right...?

When I started quilting at the beginning of this year, I thought I would make a quilt for each of my children and then put the sewing machine away again for a few more years. I've now realised that sewing and creating is a big part of me and what I love to do with my time. It's strange, because I'm not a particularly neat, organised or detail-oriented person, but I love the satisfaction that comes from pressing an accurate seam and putting together a quilt top with every corner matching together perfectly. I love the colours, the texture, and the practicality of a quilt. It is meant to be used, not just looked at; quilting is the perfect mix of art and function.

And I love it.

Tuesday, 25 May 2010

Hexagon Update

Hexagons Sewn: 141



Hexagon Papers: 248



The Plan: Unknown




For whatever reason, I'm really enjoying the process of sewing these little shapes. My husband thinks I've gone bonkers in this late pregnancy brain of mine, but I think it has a lot to do with the ability to put my swollen feet up and still get sewing done. Unfortunately, sitting at a sewing machine for too long causes all sorts of aches, pains and swellings to happen in my body right now, so I'm focusing on hexagons for the time being.

I have no idea what I'm going to end up with after all this. I don't even know if I'll carry on after the baby is born, to be honest. I have a feeling that nursing a baby and sewing with a needle and thread are two activities that won't mesh very well! I don't even know how many hexagons I would need in order to make a decent sized quilt. I should figure that one out, because I'm sure it's going to be more than 400 or so!

I love that it takes so little fabric to piece together a few hexagons. I have lots of little scraps that I'm hanging onto to teach my daughter how to stitch, and have been able to skim off the top of that pile a bit to add to my collection.

Here's something weird about me: If I have a bunch of the same fabric for hexagons (if you look closely, I have repeats of up to 8 at a time), I have to give myself a break from sewing the same kind of hexagons too many times in a row. Like, three or four of the same fabric in a row, max. I then have to mix it up with something else, to fend off fabric fatigue or something. See? Weird.

Monday, 24 May 2010

Feeling desperate....

I am a week away from my due date, and yesterday afternoon/evening was the first time I could have honestly said that I might have been possibly, maybe, could-have-been-but-not-quite-sure, kinda-sorta in labour.

I am planning on a home birth, so last night before I finally went to bed I laid plastic down on the floor, pulled out all the old towels, got baby's clothes ready, and double-checked where the camera was hiding. I was ready for things to happen.

I went to bed listening to my hypnobabies CD and hoped for the best, knowing that I had probably jinxed myself by preparing for the labour so thoroughly. And, ugh, wouldn't you know it? I didn't sleep very well due to the anticipation of it all, and I've woken up to a new day and am still pregnant. Boo. Hiss.

It's not that I'm trying very hard to get the baby out; I am a firm believer in babies staying put until they are good and ready to be born. However, it would have been nice if this baby was good and ready to be born LAST NIGHT, or EARLY THIS MORNING.

A good friend of mine recently trained to be a Doula, and she is hoping to attend my birth as part of her qualification process. She is so excited for us, which is lovely. I wouldn't describe my current feelings as excited, though... frustrated, tired, fed up. Looking forward to holding the baby in my arms, but after the long drawn out contractions of yesterday, not particularly looking forward to the real thing.

It's amazing how much you forget between babies. This is my fourth child, and I was sincerely hoping that the labour would be a simple affair. (hence the home birth scenario) My friend would put a positive spin on it -- after yesterday's practice session, my body will birth this baby with no troubles at all!

At this point, I'll take anything I can get....

Thursday, 20 May 2010

Victorian Girl Costume

Take two large white tea-towels, a bit of lace from an old net curtain, and a length of elastic to make a frilly hat and apron, thus:






Total time taken for project: 1 hour, give or take.
Total cost: Negligible. Everything was taken from stuff lying around the house.

I was going to make an all-black skirt, instead of having her wear a black skirt with a colourful design on it, but I'm too fed up with life (eg, being pregnant) to sew anything else right now. We're not going for 100% historical accuracy with this thing, anyway!

I have to say, I am in love with the hat and may just make one for myself....

Wednesday, 19 May 2010

I'm finished sewing baby things for my friends who are due with their own babies a few weeks after me! I was going to make some stuffed, stackable fabric boxes, but I've lost a lot of steam for fiddly sewing jobs recently (can't imagine why!), so that project is on hold for now.

However, I did do some experimental sewing of the baby wrap blanket variety. I really like to swaddle my babies when they are small, but never bought any special swaddling blankets that are out there. I was taught how to swaddle my babies with a normal blanket by the midwives at the hospital where I've had all 3 of my children, and their methods work fine for me. However, I thought it would be fun to sew a special swaddling blanket for my friends, just to see if I could. I poked around on the net for ideas, and with a rough plan, sort of made things up as I went along. The design of the blanket has some flaws, but I think overall it could work well for the baby who enjoys being wrapped tightly.

Materials Used:

-- fleece baby blankets
-- sheet fabric for lining
-- sew-on velcro

Total Cost of Blankets: About £4 each, probably less.

I made two blankets, one pink plaid and white, and one plain blue and brown.

Pink back:


Pink front:


I wouldn't dare attempt a tutorial on these blankets, since the design changed so much just between blanket #1 (pink) and blanket #2 (blue) in my attempts to make it better. I still can't sew that slot for the long arm of the blanket without leaving frayed edges behind (grr)! However, for those of you interested in seeing pictures of the blanket "in action" as it were, I've created a little step-by-step account of how to use it, with my daughter's doll in place of a live baby (currently far too happy inside to make an appearance). Feel free to copy my design and better it to your heart's content. If you do, let me know! I'd love to see what you come up with....

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Step One: Place baby inside blanket "pocket."

Step Two: Fold over long arm of blanket, across baby's body.

Step Three: Insert long arm of blanket through the slot.

Step Four: Turn baby over to see the back of the blanket.
Disclaimer: Do Not Place Baby Face Down On A Table As Shown;
This Is Only A Doll Used For Demonstration Purposes! ;)

Step Five: Wrap long arm tightly around baby's body,
securing at the back of the blanket via the velcro fastenings.

Step Six: Pull short arm of blanket tightly across baby's body.

Step Seven: Locate velcro fastenings for the short arm of the blanket at the back.

Step Eight: Secure short arm of blanket.

Step Nine: Turn baby over again!

Step Ten: Tuck the bottom part of the blanket under the folded
arms of the blanket to secure baby's legs within the wrapping.

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

Quick Question Re: Quilting Foot




I do not own a quilting foot for my machine. I would like to buy one, but have no idea where to look, or what would be good quality!

Could anyone give me some advice? I have a Janome RX18S. Help!


PS -- How do you pronounce Janome? Is it Juh-nome, Jah-nomey, or something else entirely?

Monday, 17 May 2010

Roy G. Biv







My rainbow fabric finally arrived, after a loooong delay due to the Volcano-That-Can't-Be-Pronounced. So happy! The fabric is very pretty, and I'm looking forward to sewing all the triangle squares into something special.

Haven't decided on a design yet, but I'm liking the look of things so far!

I'm still plugging away at my hexagons, and had fun searching through my scraps to find more fabric I'd forgotten about that is just the right size for cutting a few hexies out of! I'm also working on some other baby gift projects and still need to finish my husband's Man Quilt.

Baby is due in 2 weeks, 2 days. Y'think I'll make it?!

PS -- Today is giveaway day all over blogland, and sewtakeahike is participating as well! This is a seriously awesome giveaway: a chance to win $60 to spend at Superbuzzy, a supplier of Japanese fabrics and crafts. If I had the privilege of winning? I would certainly be grabbing these hedgehog fabrics. Too adorable for words!

Wednesday, 12 May 2010

New Items in the Shop!

I printed up a set of baby onesies for sale on my Etsy shop. There's nothing else there right now, but hopefully I'll get other projects going soon enough.

The button for the shop is under the "about me" section. Thanks for looking!

Tuesday, 11 May 2010

Other Baby Items I've Made!

My creative side is in full swing lately, and after reading up on ideas how to make a crinkle teething square for a baby, I decided to make a few myself. As mentioned before, I have a couple of friends due with babies only a few weeks after me, so I'm putting together a few small gifts for them.

The crinkle squares were a lot of fun to make! Aside from the animal appliqués, the square itself was simple and easy. I used a non-biodegradable plastic bag, cut out two layers and sewed it in between two squares of fabric. The squares make a lovely crinkly sound; hopefully the babies will enjoy them in a few months!

I made a little bib out of the same fabric I used for the animal appliqués. They are mostly for show, as I didn't add a terry layer to them so they won't be particularly absorbent. Ah well! Hopefully the pretty fabric will distract the receivers from noticing....










The hedgehog set is all for meeeee!