The Lights are Up!

I've Been Shopping, Part Two

We have been trying to finish up our kitchen.  Our backsplash is finally all installed.  The original outlets and switches didn't look good against the tile, so we had to redo all those.  I also was not a big fan of the original lights we installed over the island and peninsula.  Our ceiling is vaulted and the big box stores did not have anything long enough to look reasonable over the island.  But, in order to get an occupancy permit, all the lights had to be installed.  So I bought the longest pendants I could find, tried like six different colors and styles of shades, picked the least offensive, and here we are two years later.  
Better color representation.
The existing pendants are way too short.
They stop above the top of my upper cabinets.

I happened to look through a lighting advertisement from Joss & Main last month and saw some pendants I thought would look good.  After verifying that the chain on them is actually 10 feet long, I took the plunge and ordered them.  I was a little leery because if the lights didn't work out, I could return them but would receive a credit instead of my money back.  They had the best price by far, so I decided to take a chance.  And the shipping was only $10 for four large boxes.  They arrived Fed Ex within a few days.  I opened up one of the boxes.  So far, so good.They arrived this week and I can't wait until my husband installs them.  We will have to rent a taller ladder in order to install them, so it might be a bit.  I can't wait!!

I've Been Shopping, Part One

I've been busy shopping lately.  I found a cute Etsy shop called Stitch Supply Co. and ordered a kit to make a mini flowering snowball quilt.  I haven't attempted this block before but it looked intriguing.  The quilt is 15" square when finished, so I think this will be a great way to try something new and yet still actually finish.  Plus, the price was great!

The kit actually shipped the same day I purchased it.  The packaging was so cute!  The kit came in a little fabric drawstring bag along with the handy half square triangle card and a business card too.  I picked the Cotton and Steel fabric line for my kit.  Stitch Supply also offers the kit with Anna Maria Horner fabrics, along with yardage of modern quilting cottons and also lots of fun hand embroidery patterns/kits.

Here are the fabrics that came in my kit.

Quilt Design Wall

I've been wanting a quilt design wall FOREVER!  It's been hard to come up with a location that is big enough.  So, in my ongoing quest to take over the entire house with my sewing supplies, I decided to use a wall in the laundry room.  I now have my machines in the living room, cutting/pressing table in the office, notions in the kitchen, and design wall in the laundry.  Plus my stash and reference library in the basement.  Seriously though, I do have a nice sewing space planned for our unfinished basement.  Just waiting until my money tree grows!  So, the design wall needed to be temporary, yet still functional, and also not in the main viewing area of the house.  

So I finally decided on the laundry room since it's already dusty in there, plus out of the main traffic flow.  I bought a bunch of Command hooks, a box of mini binder clips, and a twin size Warm and White batting. The batting package gave 72" x 90" as the dimensions, so I measured up 90" from the top of the trim.  I ran the batting through the steam cycle on my dryer to release the wrinkles (and lots of fluff too, not sure if that's good or bad), hung the hooks slightly above my 90" measurement, then hung up the batting. Not sure what happened, but the batting hangs well below the top of the trim.  Thankfully it doesn't puddle on the floor.  I will have to buy a step stool or ladder or something so that I can reach the top since leaving a dining room chair in there really isn't feasible.

But, hey, it is hung and it works!  My son and my husband were amazed that fabric would stick to the batting.  I immediately laid out this quilt top that has been hanging around for a few years (because I didn't have a place large enough to lay it out and leave it while I work on it).  One thing I noticed when trying to take these pictures is that the lighting in my laundry room is not ideal for photos.  Like, REALLY not ideal.
Bought at Cottonseed Glory in Annapolis, Maryland.  Pattern is called Brick & Mortar by Pat Steiner.
It will have two borders as well.

Funny Things #10


What I'm Working On

I'm still working on finishing partially done projects.  I reorganized my cutting table and office over the weekend.  (Hey, we're only a few days into the year and I've already crossed off one of my goal list tasks!) Here are some of the things I'm working on.

First, a completed project.  Two more sets of napkins.  These have both been lounging in my to-do pile for a year or two.  I think I've come to the end of my napkin fabric stash.

Next, another napkin project.  Only this one isn't for me.  These napkins have a bit of a backstory.  My mom got these strawberry napkins from my Great Aunt Sitty, who's been gone nearly 20 years now.  When we cleaned out her things, we found this nightgown(?) that matched the napkins.  I appropriated both, intending to deconstruct the garment and make more napkins for my mom.  I hate to think how long I've had these hanging around.  Last night I removed the hem and the side seams to make the fabric lie flat.  A quick press and some cutting and this project will be ready to go.  

As a side note, you will notice some odd strawberry button closures in the photo below.  There are hand-bound button holes at the neckline and these buttons on strings were the closures.  I wish I'd been older and able to learn sewing techniques from Aunt Sitty before her passing.  I noticed that she didn't use a serger, but had whip-stitched each of the raw edges.  I don't know how that would help it not fray, but apparently it did.  Why bother doing it otherwise?

Next is a sneak peek at an upcoming doll pattern. I'm knitting on size 2 US needles for this.

On my goal list, I mentioned working on the bird quilt.  Here are the fabrics I'll be working with.  I still need to choose the embroidery floss to make up the blocks.

Finally, another unfinished project.  This is a doll quilt I made while testing a pattern for someone last summer.  It still needs to be quilted and bound and then it will go for sale in my Etsy shop.

Funny Things #9

 The "Try My Nuts" store is in North Carolina.