Saturday, March 29, 2014

Book Nook

We have been doing a little rearranging here lately. This cube shelf was originally for Mandy's closet, but we decided shelves hung on the wall would be a better use of the space and moved it up to the book nook. It was so fun unpacking some of our books! I love coming up the stairs and seeing all of them tucked in the shelf. You can see to the right we still have a few more tubs to unpack and space for another shelf.

Don't you love how the simple task of unpacking can lead to four hours of cleaning and re-organizing?!

Thursday, March 27, 2014

March Apron of the Month

March Apron of the Month is here! 

 I would like to introduce you to 

Hazel is a modern girl with plenty of old-fashioned roots. She features a smoothly flaring skirt with plenty of swish, a perfect backdrop for old-fashioned patchwork hexagon appliques or to show off  a beautiful fabric.
 I have to tell you, I had a completely different plan for March Apron of the Month. But I have been in the middle of a hexagon craze and just couldn't get excited about anything else. I finally stopped fighting it and just gave in!
 I love love love how the hexagons turned out. They were so quick and easy to do too! (For an easy tutorial see my post on English Paper Piecing.) The possibility are endless! Can you envision Hazel with a Dresden Plate block, a really fun retro print with big ric rac along the edge or a vintage motif embroidered!?! 

I couldn't resist including this picture. Love the bit of window and bed. But notice the lovely lines of the back view of Hazel. Love the way it curves.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Happy Spring says the Snowdrops!

 Today when I got home from work I was thrilled to see a little Snowdrop has pushed it's way up through the lingering ice. I am so so excited!
 This is the first year I have planted these, should have gotten them sooner! Snowdrops are famous for being the first bulb to pop up and this year they are not letting me down.

Here is Wisconsin the first day of Spring usually means mud season. No tiny green shoots, no warm breezes yet.
I am glad at lest the Snowdrops know it is Spring!

Tuesday, March 18, 2014


I don't know about you, but Spring feels like it is around the corner and it is energizing me! It has been so busy around here lately, I don't know where the weeks have gone!
 We have been busy baking ............

Cleaning, organizing, decorating............


Enjoying the Sunshine......................

and Watching the snow melt!

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Stairs in Sunliight

I just love this view. 
I love the sunlight coming in the windows bringing out the highlighting in the wood, love the contrast of the brightness of the walls. 

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Hexagon Quilt Update #3

 I just finished off 40 hexagon flowers! I don't know how many months ago it was I posted that I wanted to finish this batch up before starting on the new fabric.
 Last night I sat down and cut out a bunch more hexagons. Hopefully I will stay motivated! It is the perfect spring quilt, the colors are so cheerful!
 It has been so nice to have a little time to sew and I am so looking forward to getting my sewing room organized. I keep working at it little by little. Of course, that doesn't mean I can't sew in there right now, it just means it is harder to find things!
Previous Hexagon Quilt Posts:

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

The Saga of the Four Inch Double Tee

My beloved 1920s cast iron sink. Someday it might go in the kitchen, right now it is our utility sink. Perfect for wash large pots and roaster, boots, planters and wool sweaters(we have a tub that fits perfectly under the faucet). It was a craig's list find. My Great Aunt had one, and oh how we always envied her! I know my basement walls are gross, try not to look at them. One of this summers projects, wash and paint the walls!

So what does my sink have to do with a Double Tee? See all that plumbing to the right of the sink? This is the story.
It all started way back in May......
During plumbing week we ended up at Lowes 7 times and the local hardware store 5 times. We also made a trip to Home Depot, which is where the Double Tee comes in. When it comes to plumbing, you try and be prepared, but it doesn't usually happen. Especially with an old house, no matter how you try and plan it out and prepare for all eventualities, it just doesn't work. 
Plumber Phil had a certain fitting in mind for the plumbing next to the sink. Unfortunately, Lowes didn't have it. As we were going to Home Depot anyway (to return the bathtub), Mandy and I thought we would take a quick stroll down the plumbing aisle and see if we could find it. After looking and looking, Mandy finally spied what we thought Phil was looking for! We were so excited! We drove home gloating in triumph thinking how proud Phil was going to be of us. 
This is what a Double Tee looks like. It is huge. About 14" wide.

Upon rushing to the scene of the plumbing dilemma we saw the drain pipes completely installed and the only comment we got from the plumber "They really make a fitting like that! I didn't think you were going to find it. I figured out another way."
Needless to say we were a little deflated.

Now what to do with this THING! In all the hustle and bustle of May I threw it in the trunk of the car to deal with later. Quite a few weeks later I was rounding up odds and ends that we weren't going to use to return to Lowes and not thinking threw the Tee into a bag and took it along. After all the craziness of May I didn't even remember where I got it until the cashier asked if I was sure I had bought it here as it wasn't coming up in the system!?! Have you ever done that? Very embarrassing......
I forgot to mention, the label on the tee was roughed up. It took about 15 minutes for the cashier to finally figure this all out, after she spent 5 minutes trying to look it up in the database and 10 minutes waiting for the plumbing department to not find it.
After another few weeks/months of shuffling it around in my trunk and being asked numerous times "what is this doing in here?" I finally made it back to Home Depot. It was now a familiar routine of trying to scan, squinting at the tag, trying to look it up, waiting for the someone to look it up. While we were waiting for the verdict to come back, a man waiting behind us exclaimed "Wow! That is a crazy looking pipe, what is it for?".

I am so glad it is out of my hands now......... My sister Becky loved the story and thought I share it. She even suggested going back to the store and taking a picture of me holding the tee!!

Do you remember this ad from Good Housekeeping?

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Ticker Tape Quilt

 I decided to take a small break from knitting and have been sewing. Quilting to be more precise!
This quilt is based on the Ticker Tape Quilt from Sunday Morning Quilts by Amanda Jean Nyberg and Cheryl Arkison. Fabric is Odds and Ends by Cosmo Cricket, a fabric line by Moda. Finished size 45" x 60". (Just in case someone needs all the gritty details!)
This quilt came to be because of a Christmas gift. I gift of a quilting book for my sister and fabric for myself! I just loved these little squares! They all came pre-cut with cute little pinked edges. After drooling over my sisters new quilting book I was inspired to quilt!
I love the mix of floral, polka dots, stripes and prints. As hard as I tried some of the squares managed to wiggle around a bit......
Traditionally, this kind of quilt is made by putting together the top, batting and backing, then the squares are sewn on through all layers, thus quilting the quilt at the same time. I decided to sew the squares to the top layer first, then layer together with batting and backing and quilt like a normal quilt.
Some of the squares are sewn on multiple times, some just once and then quilted. I played around with a random look.
Polka dots for the backing using fabric from the same line.
It only took me a year to finish this one. Sometimes I am not the greatest at getting quilts finished! I so enjoyed making it though, it was a bit of a lifeline last year when life was so chaotic.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Brown Striped Apron

This is one of my newest additions to the collection. I simply love the way the stripes are used! Horizontal in the center and vertical on the sides.
As I was browsing around the antique shop a little gray haired lady came up and asked to see the apron I was carrying around. We had a nice little chat on the popularity of the apron and how easy they are to make. She was so cute!

The construction is lovely. Double stitching, hidden pocket, ric-rac inserted in the seams.....

A view of how the apron is made of three panels.

P.S. Would you like to see a pattern for this apron? I think it is going to be an Apron of the Month!!