Thursday, March 7, 2019

Accidental Baby Quilt

Have you seen the cute fabric line Gretel designed by my sweet friend Amy Smart for Riley Blake designs? I had a chance to work with them and I made a quilt top a few weeks ago. What? the quilt up above? NO. That isn't it. The picture below is the quilt top I made first. For some reasons, my dog always shows up from nowhere when I start taking pictures of my quilt and gets in the pictures. Sorry if you are not a doggy lover. ;) It is not quilted yet, but I love how it turned out. I made it up as I went along, which is great, but because it wasn't planned nor did I follow a pattern, I had some left over blocks. I hate to waste so many blocks, so I started playing with them and kept switching things up to see the design potential... and pieced them together...

and ta-da! This baby quilt was born.

I was so happy how it turned out and got carried away. I hand quilted it, decided to do scalloped edges, and embroidered some red motif on it.

Sometimes you can come up with something fun and unexpected when you go with the flow and just let it happen. My baby sister is pregnant with her first baby and I am crossing my fingers that the baby is a girl, so this aunt can ship this quilt to Japan!

Thursday, February 28, 2019

Top from Japanese Sewing Book

I fell in love with this top when I first saw the cover of this Japanese Sewing Book (I don't think it is translated to English) and it was put it on my "things to sew" list...
When I was visiting a local shop, I found a beautiful shot cotton in a similar color, I immediately thought about the top.

Ok, it is a little bit brighter, but I still like how it turned out. It was a very straight forward and easy to make pattern; I enjoyed making the shirt.

I used left over faux fur from another project I did recently and made this scarf. It is so fun to coordinate the things you made yourself.

I love this top so much so that I am probably going to make more in the future with different colors. Simple and versatile white or nice and soft muted green...who knows, I will know when I see the perfect fabric for this. :)

Monday, December 31, 2018

Daysi Do Quilt

This the is final post of 2018! I have been working on some hand piecing and EPP through out the year, but I finally finished this quilt!! This is a pattern called "Daisy Do" and designed by Jen Kingwell. This is one of the quilts that took my breath away and I had to make one. When I make scrap quilts, I go through my scraps first, move on to fat quarters and if I have to, then I cut in to bigger pieces. It was so much fun to come up with different combinations of blocks.

I am a hand quilter and usually if I spend so much time hand piecing a quilt, most likely I hand quilt it as well. But, a few years ago, I injured my shoulders and I was supposed to get surgery this year; well, that plan was before I was diagnosed with breast cancer. I felt that I needed to take care of that first and that put my shoulder surgery off. I finished the quilt top a while ago, but wasn't sure if I was going to be able to do hand quilting. I finally decided to ask someone to machine quilt my quilt and I asked my friend Audrey who runs a machine quilt company called the The Quilt Barn with her sister, Emmy. I couldn't be happier with the result!! She did such an amazing job! She even quilted each circle in the middle of the flowers.

The way she quilted really emphasis the design of the quilt top and that was exactly what I wanted. I pieced the backing and with her beautiful machine quilting design, I feel like I have two quilts in one. Thank you so much Emmy!

Last but not least, let me mention my middle son. I wanted to take some pictures of the quilt, but really needed help, he came with me and did above and beyond for the photo shoot. I just wanted to say a big THANK YOU to him too. I know I am blessed with one of the best teens! I didn't use this picture at the very top of the post, even though I really love the look of the quilt hanging from the tree. He climbed up the tree and held the quilt while he was balancing and stabilizing himself on the V shaped tree. I spotted his foot sticking out from the quilt while I was editing the pictures. I thought to myself, "Shoot! Why didn't I see that?" But, this picture is very special because it reminds me of him and how sweet he was to help me out.

Well, everyone, 2018 was quite eventful for me both good and bad but, I am so grateful for all the experiences I went through and love I received. I hope I will be healthier and
able to do more in 2019.

I wish you all the very best and send my love. Happy New Year!!!

Saturday, December 29, 2018

Gray Apron Skirt

I have been wanting to make an apron skirt but no luck finding a pattern that I exactly wanted. I looked through my old Japanese pattern books(I bought 20+ years ago!) and found a couple patterns that I thoguht I can combine some aspects from both of them and create my own and that's what I did.

There are a few things I would change if I decided to make this in a different color, but I like how it turned out. Mr.Tea Rose Home said I look like a "farm girl" from the old movies... ok, maybe a little. :)

Friday, December 21, 2018

Friendship Heart Quilt

Do you ever look back at your past and the choices that you have made and how they have affected the life you live now? I do. Not that frequently, but sometimes an event happens in my life; mostly good things and I start reflecting on and connecting the past choices to now.

This week, I was surprised by one of the most amazing and generous gifts and many emotions flooded my mind. Over 10 years ago, I started blogging. I was kind of testing what this "blogging" this was all about, and started sharing the things I made. There were ups and downs but I kept creating and writing. Over the years I have met so many great people online and in person that I would have otherwise never had a chance to meet.

Amy of Diary of a Quilter organized some quilter/sewer friends to make this heart quilt. She asked them to sew heart blocks and send it to her, she pieced them together and Andy of A Bright Corner quilted it. When they gave me the quilt, she told me that the quilt was made with "many hands", I wasn't sure what that meant. I opened the card, there were names of our dear friends; some of whom I've known for years and some are new friends... they each participated to create this beautiful quilt.

Evy of A Bit of Stitch made this lovely label for the quilt.

I am not sure exactly which block was made by who, but as I was looking at these heart blocks and thinking about those friends; my own heart was bursting with gratitude and I couldn't hold back my tears. I know everyone has their own busy lives, but they were willing to take the time to participate in this and to show love and support for my recovery from my double mastectomy. My recovery was a bit rocky at first with bleeding issues and infections. And now, I still have a low-grade fever everyday, even after over two month from the surgery. I have had some testing done, but the doctors don't know exactly what is causing it. I try to live normal day to day life, but not knowing the cause worries me.

This quilt came just in time for me to feel extra love from my friends even from different parts of the United States. I think there are many kind, genuine, caring people in quilting/sewing community. I am so thankful for each one of them and I want them to know they will always have a special spot in my heart. I wish I could give them a hug in person and tell them how much their kindness and friendship means to me. These are the creative friends who made these heart blocks. I hope you will hop over to visit their delightful site to see their fun projects!

Lindsay of Lindsay Sews
Dana of Made Everyday
Pat of Pat Sloan's Quilters Home
Amanda of Jedi Craft Girl
Bev of Flamingo Toes
Heather of The Sewing Loft
Liz of Simple Simon and Co
Amber of GiGi's Thimble
Babylock Sewing
Riley Blake Designs

I have witnessed many times since the diagnosis of my breast cancer one of my favorite saying "God takes care of people through people". My medical problems are still here and I know I (and my family) has to deal with them, but knowing that I am surrounded by caring friends helps me to be strong and keeps me going.

They are truly Angels.

Monday, December 17, 2018

Wide Trim Pencil Case Tutorial

I stopped in to a local shop in downtown Provo called Harmony. I always find something fun and whimsical there and without fail, I found a gorgeous embroidered wide trim. It was a bit pricey, but I think it made sense when I thought about the width and the amount of the embroidery work on the trim. I bought half a yard and had a great idea to use this wonderful trim. I made a pencil case! I have been wanting to make one, but instead of using fabric, I decided to use this trim. This is not a really detailed tutorial, but I will give you the measurement and what I did.

*You will need

Trim --- 3 3/4" x 18" (cut in half)
Fabric--- Cut 2, 4 1/4" x 9"
9" zipper(it was too long for this, but when I bought the trim I wasn't thinking about the zipper length... you could ether buy more trim, or use a 7"zipper if you prefer)

*How to
1. Sew zipper. Because the edge of the trim is already done, and I didn't want to lose anymore width, I just sewed the zipper on without folding the edge. Sew sides and the bottom, make a small boxed bottom.

2. Using 1/4" seam, sew three sides of the fabric. make a small boxed bottom. Fold the top edge with 1/4" seam.

3. Put together the trim and the liner you made in step 2. Pin the top of the lining to zipper. Slip stitch to secure it.

4. Done!

Wasn't that simple? It was such an easy project, and it really doesn't take much time to make one. If you are still wondering what to give to your sisters, friends, kid's teachers or coworkers, this could be a great gift. You can even put some fun stuff inside of the pencil case to make it even more special.:)

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Thanksgiving Giveaway!

I can't believe it's been almost a month since I last updated my blog. I posted a few things on Instagram in the last few weeks, because it is much easier to shoot a picture and post it with my phone, but the truth is that I wasn't in much of a mood to do any social media after the surgery. I wonder if I was going through a mini depression of sorts. The first couple of weeks after I came home, I stayed in bed most of my time and either slept, read, or watched TV; which is very unusual for me. Usually I already have a hand stitch project ready by my bed and I would have been working on that. When I delivered my second son through c-section, I was doing applique in my hospital bed by day 2. This time, I really didn't have much desire to do that. When I thought I was getting better, I got an infection. With that, my recovery was set back a couple more weeks.

The last week or so, I starting to feel like myself again. I am up and doing more. Don't worry, I am still being very careful and not lifting anything heavy, but, I am doing light cooking (which my family loves!), putting some make-up on everyday, and I started creating again. As you can tell by the title, I am hosting a Thanksgiving giveaway. I will give you the entry details, but first, let me share what I am thankful for.

Every year, I would say I am thankful for my family and friends. I would say the same thing this year also, but I say it with much deeper meaningful feelings attached.
Diagnosed with cancer and going through a double mastectomy really reminded me of how our life is very fragile and precious. I have been through a lot medically since I was little and I have thought about mortality in the past too, but your prospective changes when you are a mother of three.

I REALLY. DON'T. WANT. TO. DIE. I want to stick around much longer; watch them grow, thrive, and be there when they need a shoulder to cry on. Sure my kids are not little anymore and my role as a mother is changing, but my job as a mother is never over. Then I thought about the many people who had to go either by accident, through illnesses, or whatever reason. My heart saddens to think about them, about how they must have wanted to stay with their loved ones too. Also it gave me renewed perspective to treasure my family and the other people in my life and not to take them for granted.

My life is not perfect; and boy, I am far from perfect. I do complain about the small stuff too, but the last few months really gave me a reality check of what is more important. These are the things I am thankful for this year and probably they will be at the top of my thankful list for as long as I live.

I am thankful for my life. I am thankful waking up every morning and a chance to do good and do better.

I am thankful for my family and friends. I pray every day about how grateful I am to have them in my life.

I am thankful for the gospel. I am thankful that I can rely and trust in God to help me seek the many small miracles in my life rather than the faults. It has always given me strength to pull through in difficult times.

I still have some concerns about my health and I met an oncologist last week. I don't know how everything will turn out, but I want to live my life with fullest of gratitude and love everyday. :)

I thought about all my friends who helped me though this difficult time and I thought I will do a giveaway not only to benefit the winner, but her friends too!! One lucky winner will receive: one Tiny Tin Sewing Room, and 7 bags of goodies for your friends! The bag contains a stick-able bottle cap pincushion, measuring tape and clips. I bet they will make fun gift exchange for Christmas. So, are you ready for the giveaway details? The rules are simple:

1. First entry: Leave a comment and share what you are thankful for.

2. Second entry: Go to my Instagram page and enter there as well.

I will post the winner on the morning of the 23rd. Good luck everyone!
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