Weekend Whims- Southern Art Tour

I live in Seattle, but I’m a southern at heart! Every year we take a trip to our family beach house on the Gulf Coast of Alabama. I’ve been doing this every single year of my life. I think I missed a few years when I was living in AK, but out of 30 some odd years that’s ok. And every year that we go down, we’re on the lookout for southern art. Folk art, Outsider Art….. Some call it one, some call it the other, and to me most of it is both. This year, we’re actually headed to North Alabama for a little bit and we’re really on the lookout for finding some interesting things!! Here’s a little of what we love, what we want and  what we want to see….

1 and 2. We love Michael Banks! We’re lucky enough to have 3 of his pieces already. We’re headed to his neck of the woods and would love to meet him, but probably won’t. But wouldn’t that be cool??? we got one of his pieces on our honeymoon. And then I got another piece, similar to 2 for my husband for the Father’s Day before our son was born. I knew it would be a while before we could invest in art together. So I thought it was a fitting gift… Images via Jeanine Taylor Folk Art

3. And Cornbread…. My husband’s not as big a fan as I am, but he was sweet enough to get me one of his pieces one of our trips home. One of the guinea chicks. Now I want a fox! But he also does owls, and bears and raccoons that I love… Image via Jeanine Taylor Folk Art.

4. Yes, I’ve mentioned Gee’s Bend how many times lately??? But we’re going!!! I can’t wait!! I hope I get to meet some of the quilters. I’ll probably freeze and get real shy. Star Struck! Image via Auburn University College of Liberal Arts Women’s Studies

5. Have you been to the Ave Marie Grotto??? We’re not sure if we’re going to make it or not, but we really want to see it! It might not be considered folk art, but it’s art and it looks really cool!

6 and 7. Butch Anthony is another artist I have come to love. Don’t have one of his pieces yet, but hope to change that this week!!! You might have heard of his partner, Natalie Chanin… of Alabama Chanin… Would love to visit her studio and factory, too, but not going to make it to that corner this year. They are both super talented artists!! I can’t wait to visit his Museum of Wonder and the Doo Nanny!! Yea!


Kids Clothes Week Challenge is coming!!!

So Project Quilting just ended, right before I leave for vacation, and when I get back, Kids Clothes Week Challenge will be starting!!!

Yeah! can you tell I’m a bit competitive? If you give me a challenge, I’m up for it! I seem to get much more done if it’s called a ‘challenge’!!

I’ve done the KCWC a few times…. And there have been quite a few projects that rank high in my book. Like there’s this pair of ‘comfy‘ pants I made my son out of a sweater. He still wears them , even though they are a little bit short. His Dad cringes every time he wears them (he was never a big fan!).  Two of my other favorites are these blue pants (pattern by Dana, from Made) and this adorable little dress!


This year, it’s more pj’s (I think he gets a pair every year), a hoodie, some men’s tees made to kids tees… What are you going to make???

Project Quilting- Challenge 6- Zig Zag

OK, this was another challenge that stumped me… not the zig zag part. I’ve got that figured out… The background of my Tool quilt was technically a zigzag quilt… But this is that part that stumped me, ‘Your challenge is to go beyond the basic zigzag quilt.’

I looked online at images of zig zag quilts and there are actually quite a few different ones. But then I thought about the quilts I’m obsessing about now…. The Gee’s Bend quilts! They are beautiful and it’s these quilts that got me into quilting in the first place! I used two inspirations from the Gee’s Bend Quilts, ….

The first one is a ‘Bricklayer’ pattern by Qunnie Pettway. The second two images show the little triangle areas that inspired my ‘zig zag’. These two are ‘strips and strings’ quilts by Mary Lee Bendolph. Both images come from the book Gee’s Bend The Architecture of the Quilt.  Well, I have to say, trying to make a quilt look as fantastic as these Gee’s Bend quilts are is not an easy task! This one that I did is growing on me, but it’s definitely a far cry from the magnificent Gee’s Bend-esgue look I was going for!

This is another purely scrap quilt. My idea was to not measure anything. just sew and trim as I went along. But as I was nosing through my scrap baskets I found a lot of already cut strips that I decided to you ahead and use!

If you’ve noticed… I’m a bit shy with my quilting. Typically I do the ‘Stitch in the Ditch’ technique, so all my stitches are in the folds between the pieces of fabric. But this time, I wanted to stay as far away from the ditch! And that I did! I let the ‘zig zag produce the quilting pattern.

I sketched out my design and asked my husband if he thought it was a zig zag and he shook his NO! But despite his opinion, I went with it anyway. He still is saying it’s not a zig zag, but to me, it’s my interpretation of  a ‘zig zag’ and I think it works. Actually, my husband really likes it, he’s just not real sure about the ‘zig zag’ meeting the rules of the quilting challenge!

And for the back I decided to do another experiment. Remember the other day when I showed the ways I hang my little quilts? Well, I had done this triangle corner technique on a little tiny one, but wasn’t sure if it would work no a larger size. So, I thought why not give it a try… And it hangs beautifully!

And that’s the end of Project Quilting…. Not the end of mini quilts for me, but it’s our last challenge for Project Quilting. And I’m bummed. I had such a great time doing this. I’m so glad that I did. I got to try out a lot of different things and design quilts that I might not have done if I hadn’t joined in. I can’t wait for the next round!!


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Weekend Whims- Getting Ready for Summer!

Yes, I know, this week was actually the first of spring, but I’m ready for summer! We usually take our summer vacation the end of May and head to the Gulf Beaches of Alabama. This year, the trip is moving up to, well, practically now! And seeing how it’s in the 40’s here and the 70’s where we’re headed, I feel like we’re about to leave winter and head straight to summer! Summer for us here in the Pacific Northwest is the 70’s! So even though it’s only spring, I feel like we’re getting ready for summer!

1. Love this Endora top from Simple Simon and Company! I’m going to have to find a little girl to sew it for…. hmmm….

2. And speaking of cute summer tops…  I’m hoping I’ll have time to make this Wiksten tank for myself before I go! I saw it on Kristin from Skirt as Top, and it looks great on her! Maybe it will look almost as good on me…

3. These flowers have been all over the web, but I sure do love them! This DIY is by Ruche for Design*Sponge.

4. We’re going to see family, so how fitting is this set of family dolls by Timo Handmade!!

5. And I just want to lay in the sun on this bed! Image via The Style Files.


Ways to Hang Mini Quilts…

Since starting my adventure with Project Quilting, I’ve made the most mini quilts I’ve ever made… Ok, this was actually the first time I’ve ever made any mini quilts! I’ve always wanted to, but that was another thing on my To Do List. This has been so much fun!

But what am I going to do with them??? That’s what I’m not quite sure of… But I did figure that more than likely they will be hanging on a wall somewhere. so I experimented with different ways to hang them…

My first Project Quilting quilt, I didn’t actually do anything to hang it! I hadn’t thought the whole thing through yet… But I had started thinking more about it by the Second Challenge. For this one I made took a strip about 1.5 inches wide and almost the length of the quilt. Put a little hem on the ends, folded it over and then secured it in under the binding.

But when I hung it on the wall, the quilt rolled and the hanging piece shows over the top of the quilt….

So then we moved on to Challenge 3. Since this one was so small, I tried the triangle in the corner approach!

And I like it! It hangs well, but I’m not sure that it would work for any quilts much larger than this one.

For Challenge 4, I made this quilt to be shown either side, so again I didn’t experiment with hanging styles. I’m sure there’s a way to display a quilt from the front and back, but I don’t know what it is.  I mean you could use clips, but I don’t know how to incorporate it into the quilt…

The third times a charm they say, right?? For my Challenge 5 quilt, I tried yet another technique. My third technique… And so far it’s my favorite!  Like the first hanging technique, I cut a piece of fabric almost the length of the quilt and hemmed the ends. The difference with this one is that I sewed down one side with the first line of quilting. (So it works with the quilting pattern, but it might not work with all quilting patterns!) and then folded it over and pinned it so that the other edge of the hanging strip is sewn in under the binding.

Please excuse the binding details…. Pretend that’s a beautifully sewn corner detail!

It hangs great! You don’t see the hanging strip and it lays quite nicely!

What’s your favorite mini (or regular) quilt hanging techniques. I’m sure there’s a more detailed way to handle this decision, but I can only share what I know and this is it!

Project Quilting- Challenge 5- It’s Where I Live Castoff

Last week I showed you the Project Quilting Its Where I Live Challenge postage stamp quilt that I did. I called it ‘Rain’. This week, I made another one that I’m calling ‘Showers’. hehehe… get it? Rain Showers??? ha, I crack myself up!

Well, When I came up with that design, I also came up with this other design… My sidekicks (the husband and son) chose the umbrella one that I went with.

But I also really liked this other design…..

Then I saw Stitched In Color’s Scrap Attack Sew Along and my pile of scraps from the Rain quilt. And I thought about it and thought about it… And decided to make another little mini quilt from my scraps. I kinda miscalculated some of the colors for the rain quilt and cut a few extras…

Since I had some scraps and another design in mind, I thought why not?

Which one is your favorite? Rain or Showers?

Weekend Whims- Everything’s Green

Happy St. Patick’s Day!!

We’re not Irish, at least not much Irish… We don’t do a lot of St. Patrick’s Day crafts and we don’t eat the tradition Patty’s day food or decorate the house in green! But we do wear green! And we do love green, so to celebrate today, I’m sharing some of my favorite green finds!

1. What about this green turtle DIY by Make It- Love It??? Adorable!

2. Now this is actually a St Patty’s day tutorial, a clover banner how to by One Charming Party. But I think they’d make a great quilt!

3. Love this terrarium by Twig Terrariums. They have some great kits as well!

4. I do love a good yarn pompom! And imeondesign has a clever use for them… Placesetting card holder! Too cute.

5. Also in love with this specimen like bug party and the great green beetle invitation.

6. I do have a thing about handmade play food (even though I keep saying I”m going to make some, but never do…) and I love these cute cupcakes by She Wears Flowers for Snips and Spice!

T-shirts, T-shirts, T-shirts!

So, let’s step back in time a bit… When I first met my husband and we moved in together we made art all the time… We hung out in our unfinished basement for hours. I had the only finished room down there for my fabric and sewing and all the other pieces I’d make. he had the rest of the basement for his projects, which was a lot of wax and wood cutting! Then we got married… Then we got pregnant… Then we finished out the basement for living space… Then we had our kiddo… And the days of crafting together for hours on end kinda fell by the wayside. (Partly because we realized how toxic the wax is and that got sent to the garage…. And partly beacuse we’ve had a kiddo!)

Fast forward three and a half years…. Last weekend we spent hours in our basement crafting. All three of us! It was awesome! So that inspired me to show ya what my husband was up to! Nope, not the wax encaustics… T-shirts!

I’m in love with this bird design he did! It was his first multiple color shirt that he’s done.

And it’s been a hit with the kiddo!

And a few of his other designs…

They both, Daddy and the kiddo, have the flying monkey t-shirt. One day we didn’t realize it until we’d gotten out in the world that they were both wearing it! Matchey, Matchey!

And where we live…

And where I think my husband wants to live!

I wish I had been able to video and photograph this little photo shoot that we had. The kiddo was hilarious! Since he’s not yours, you might not find this as entertaining as I do, but oh well…

(not exactly sure why the color is weird…)

Wanna buy one?? I think we’re going to get en etsy site up and running for him soon. The birdie will be the first one for sale! You can buy them here! He’s working on a squirrel now. But what my son and I are excited about is his octopus that’s in the works!!

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Project Quilting- Challenge 5- It’s Where I Live

This week’s Project Quilting challenge was ‘It’s Where I Live’

Well, I live in Seattle in the Pacific Northwest that is known for the dreary wet weather. It’s also known as the Emerald City because of the lushness that we have (thanks to the rain..). And the Space Needle and the mountains and the water and all sorts of great things. But right now, I’m sick of the RAIN!! It’s also snowing like every other morning! Not much snow, but it’s still snow…. I’m ready for some warmth and real sun! My son keeps saying it is sunny. Poor kid! (He’s really a Seattle native) Yes, the snow is out, it’s just blocked by miles and miles of clouds. I want to see the actual sun! Ok, let me get on with it…

So obviously the rain is on my mind these days! So this week’s quilt is about the rain! I’m not such an umbrella kinda person. It rains too much here to deal with getting out an umbrella every time it starts raining! But my son LOVES umbrellas, so we’ve been using them a lot.

I’ve also been wanting to try a postage stamp quilt with all the little pieces, so I figured a small art quilt would be a good time to try it out. I used Oh Fransson’s tutorial on using the grid and interfacing to layout and sew together the pieces. If only I had kept reading past the part to cut open the seams…. Mine worked fine the way it was, but when I was quilting the needle didn’t run smoothly down the line. The only thing I can think of is that the fusible interfacing was kinda sticking to the needle. If I had ironed it flat like she did, I might not have had that problem… Anyway… I’m super excited about this technique. Such a time saver!

I was stressing for a few minutes about making my ironing/grid layout. But then I remembered my cutting area is actually a butcher board counter! It’s usually covered with my cutting board, so you have to forgive my bad memory! I just removed the cutting board and wahla, there’s the perfect spot for my grid and postage stamp ironing area. Yes, I did accidentally fuse a piece of interfacing to the grid! shhhh…..

The other rule for this week’s challenge was that you can only use 3 colors…

‘The color scheme for your project will be determined by where you live.  Take the first letter of your street, your city and your state.  I live on Bohling Rd, Poynette, Wisconsin.  So I have the letters B, P and W.  Now, choose colors starting with these 3 letters.  I could pick blue, pink and white.  Or boysenberry, persimmon, and wine. Or….  Choose whatever colors you like with these 3 letters.  You must use all 3 colors in your quilt.’

I live on 20th Ave S in Seattle, WA. My colors had to start with a T, S and W. I had to stretch the rules a bit on this one, so I headed over to the Crayola website and found their current color list….. The ones I choose were, Timberwolf Grey, Sky Blue and Wild Strawberry!

The other little thing I did on this one was make my own fabric design. I took pictures of my son with his umbrella and then edited them in Photoshop and printed on fabric!

It took me longer than planned, but all in all, I’m really excited about it!

Last night my son, keep in mind he’s three, was supposed to be in bed, but he came back in while I was finishing it and said, ‘I do like it, but there’s only one thing I don’t like. This right here (he was pointing to the handle of the umbrella) because the handle doesn’t really do that.’ That’s when I said, ‘Hmmm. Go back to bed!’ What a silly little stinker!

Although I didn’t quite finish this one on time, today is a very fitting day for this post. The weather outside was crazy! Woke up to snow on the ground and in the air, then rain, then sun, then dark dark clouds with hail, then snow, then sun, then dark dark clouds, then snow again (this time with accumulation), then rain. After that it was dark and I gave up on keeping up with the changes! Hope yall are having better weather than we are here!

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Weekend Whims- The Beach!!!

I’m so excited! Every year we leave the Pacific Northwest’s dampness for a time at my late grandparents beach house that I have visited every single year of life! We typically go in May, but due to a few little work issues (like my lack of one and more dependancy on my husband’s) we had to move our trip up this year and we’ll be leaving soon!! Sweet Home Alabama here we come!

I’m always doing some sort of project while we’re there. I finished my first quilt there one year! So this week’s weekend whims is a look into my pinterest pages of projects I want for the beach house!

1. I have been in love with this frame wall by Toby Fairley Interior Design for over a year now!

2. Every year I mean to make a collage of our sea shell finds, like these by Martha Stewart. Maybe this year, we can!

3. As a kid we had an outdoor shower! It must have blown away in a hurricane or something. Who knows! I would love to follow this outdoor shower tutorial by The Handmade Home.

4. I soooo want to add swings just like these to our pier! (repinned via pinterest. I don’t have the link to the original posting. If anyone does, please let me know so that I can add it.)

5. I’ll never forget catching a sea-horse in the crab trap as a kid! We pulled it up and scooped out the crabs and put the trap back in. There’s always seaweed and jellyfish tentacles (yes, I’ve been stung a few times from kneeling in it as I put the trap back in) and that sort left on the pier from the traps. But this time, I just happened to see a little tiny sea-horse, not bigger than an inch long jumping around. Of course, being a kid I scooped it up and kept it. I loved watching it. That is until my grandmother poured it out in the dirty dish water… Again, I found it and kept it, but unfortunately the sea-horse had moved on to cleaner waters, so to speak… A little bit of my childhood fun at the beach. So naturally, I love this seahorse pillow by Matsutake!

6. Love how perfect a recycled chenille blanket is for this sea urchin pillow by Parker Brown Textiles. She also great some great starfish pillows as well!

Check out the other projects I’d love to do at my pinterest page!

And Mom, start looking for some frames for the coral frame wall in the middle room and an old chenille blanket for some pillows… and maybe soem vintage sheets for some quick quilts! wink, wink!