I swear I've been busy all year, I just never post anymore to anything other than instagram. maybe it's time to start writing again? Anyway, here's the 2017 edition of my favorite birthday present in the whole world.
Have you heard the "simple gifts" or "4-things" rule for parents?
"Something you want, something you need, something to wear, and something to read?"
Well, last year, I tried it, and while I did better than I have in the past, it still felt like too much. I had the 4 things I wanted to give the kids, and then there were all the things THEY wanted, and somehow I felt like Christmas would be a disappointment if they didn't get those things, so... yeah. Too much, again. (firstworldproblems, I know, but I'M TRYING.)
Anyway, this year, I've decided to put it on THEM. I want them to pause for a minute, look at their overly full bedrooms, review their amazon wishlists, etc, and edit their wishlists THEMSELVES. To make it a little bit more fun, I've made a... well, I guess it's kind of just a worksheet, but I'm hoping they'll be inspired.
If you click on the image above, I think it'll take you to my google drive so you can download it as a PDF. Hopefully.
Anyway, it looked a little blah to me, like, it's not pretty enough to blog about, so here's one all doodled and colored and filled out...
Mush snazzier, right? I don't know what that little star on the right is for, (other than navigating to Neverland), but I wanted it, and i figured it could just be decorated, or maybe an activity could g there (like, drive around and look at lights, or bake cookies, or whatever), or maybe some action they can take to spread cheer?
anyway, tag me on IG (@ramonarose) if you use it? xoxoxo and happy holidays!
Once again, I'm reminded that I'm the luckiest ever. (scroll down for the links to previous years)
2012 (spoiler alert, TEAR JERKER: Crockett was born 3 weeks early, C was out of town, and sent me the video to watch in the hospital) https://vimeo.com/45883975
Gotta love quick and easy projects! I'm loving my bullet journal/travellers notebooks, but I wanted to cover them with something pretty.
i made a "fauxdori" for myself on Tuesday,
I saw a bunch online that have raw edges and square corners, so I didn't even think about it much, but now I know that I can't handle those, so last night I tried again.
I used a bunch of old block bits and tiny leftovers, along with a good dose of crumbs, and I love it.
I matchstick-quilted the heck out of it so all the pieces would lie flat. Or just flattER.
I made it 9"x12.5" and it's big enough for 4 books, but my next one will be even bigger, I think.
It's a little large for a baby quilt (about 60" square) , but Adam (my college BFF, father of the baby for whom this was made) is really tall, so the baby might need a big quilt. :)
The most essential ingredient in a Library Book Bag is something that marks it as uniquely for library books, right?
i had a brilliant (humble as always) idea to make a block that's a library icon, and made it in illustrator, and made the whole block, and about halfway through, realized that I made the paper pattern backwards. Oh well. I finished it as it was, and then flipped it in Photoshop.
Hooray for Photoshop! Now the book is ready to read!
My string bin overfloweth, so I need to use some up.
I decided to play with big triangles, and my only rule is that I try to alternate value, so there will be high contrast for a baby. (High contrast helps stimulate baby brains.) (Not my baby, I'm making this for a friend😌)
I lied. The other rule is that each octagon has a solid-ish colored center.
Crockett being himself, as soon as I made a few blocks and laid them out on the floor for viewing, he ran to photobomb me.
Good thing he's cute, right?
I made my first block in July of 2011, the color scheme was inspired by the descriptions of Aunt Em in the Wizard of Oz. ooooodles of different fabrics, and a mix of rotary cutting, template cutting, and paper piecing. It's got wool batting from Sew Modern, and I thread basted it on the Sew Modern long arm frame, but quilted it on my Juki at home. (It's my favorite all over FMQ design, 3E)
ok, we all know I'm all RK all the way, but I DO make one exception, and that's for anything by Carrie Bloomston, of Such Designs. I love her. She's so kind and caring and wonderfully talented.
I got to play with her new line, and she was sweet enough to send enough fabric for my kids to choose what they wanted.
He LOVED them, and can't wait to wear them (I made them a little big, so he can wear them after market)
I also made a dress for my Beanie, using this very vibrant and beautiful hot pink polka dot
hopefully I'll finish writing the pattern for this dress soon. It's the state fair dress I started a million years ago, but the old laptop is long dead, and the pattern files gone, so I've had to start over. :(
but it's really pretty, look:
My Beanie girl loves this fabric so much, she's started a doll quilt with some of the fabric. She's got the moons on the backside, and she's quilting around all of her favorite motifs on this novelty print. She's been telling us all about what all the different images mean to her. It's so perfect.
Carrie is giving away a fat quarter pack of STORY and a copy of her book to three lucky winners! Comment on this post on her website for a chance to win, and be sure to visit all the other amazing makers who got a sneak peek of STORY.
I'm trying to tame my embroidery floss basket. I inherited it around the age of 10 from my mother and sister, and it looks like this:
Lame, huh? I mean, there's a LOT of floss, yay!, but also, it's just a big tangle, mostly. SO, I ordered some super awesome boxes via amazon, and started winding.
it's getting better. But then, I also ordered this book, and I need exact colors, and I also noticed that I frequently have like 5 skeins of the same color, so I REALLY need to use more of the paper bobbins that I can write on, not just the plastic ones that come in the boxes.
but Joanns is quite a drive (well, it's only like 15 minutes away, but ... I hate going there). And I feel silly ordering paper bobbins online. So I looked around, and there are some REALLY cute free printable floss bobbins out there on the interwebs. (most notably these from Wild Olive). I printed out a page, but then I realized that I need like 100. or more. and cutting out 100 bobbins from cardstock one at a time was going to drive me batty.
So I thought about it, and looked around the web some more, and finally just gave up and made my own. These are super simple, both in design, and in terms of time/effort required. All you really need is an exacto blade and a straight edge!
If you'd like to make some too, click the pic to download and print, as many times as you'd like, for personal use only.
I printed them on cardstock that I had on hand, and while it's OK to cut them all out separately, I found that I liked them best when cut as in the photo above. Cut the columns out with an exacto, then cut the bobbins out in pairs. Score along the line between them, and fold them over, then treat them as one. Cut the side bits out, then slice the thread-end-grabby-bits, then hole punch if you like. I didn't feel like glueing the layers together was necessary, since floss will be wound around them.
I added in a line so you can write the brand/color on the end (write on the side OPPOSITE the thread-slice, just so your thread doesn't get in the way). Let me know if you have any questions. I'm thinking of printing the template out onto pretty scrapbook paper so I can have pretty bobbins, but for now, this is making me REALLY happy.
I joined a creative pen pal swap, so I can write more (and hopefully encourage my children to enjoy writing too!).Anyway, I looked at 3 stores, and on Amazon, and can't find any lined stationary, like for writing letters. Didn't that exist when we were younger, or am I imagining it? so this morning I got fed up and used an old flourish I designed last year to make some for myself. feel free to download and use (for non-commercial purposes) if you'd like. It should print nicely on standard 8.5" x 11" paper. And if you want to write to me, I promise to write back! download PDF here
My scrap system is NOT working. I just have way too many! SO, I decided to use the Scrap User's System from Quiltville, modified to suit me (per hersuggestions). I've been working on scrap quilts, using up my 2.5" squares making churn dash blocks (1 per day, in 6 minutes or fewer, #sanitystitching on IG). And I started a bow tie quilt to use up more scraps. ...
Crockett helped me make these. My mother's day present was this AMAZINGLY gorgeous Morse (badged) Super Deluxe zigzagger that's just AWESOME.
Crockett LOVES getting to "help" me sew with it. (see that round light above the needle? it's RED! so retro neon-light-y, I can't contain a squee! every time I turn the light on)
Anyway, back to my scraps.
I started with my green bin. I sorted into foldable pieces (Must be a rectangle at least 6" x 20" or bigger), 3-4" strips, 2.5" strips, strings narrower than 2.5", and 2.5" squares (fussy cut when possible). I also cut pieces for my bowties. (I'm cutting 3" squares, with 1.25" squares to make the little triangles, so the bowties will be 5" squares)
here're my 2.5" and 3-4" strips:
time to sweep!
but that neckline was too big.
so I tried this (with Zoe Ingram's Carried Away fabrics):
she loved it so much that every single picture of her in it is blurry as she dances around
here's another sample (made with Valori Wells' Blueprints Basics fabrics)
I got her to hold still by saying it was a ballet recital, so she's curtsey-ing here.
the pattern looks like this
and is super awesome. It's a speedy sew, perfect to make for birthday presents.
and here's the 12m made for a baby's first birthday:
I hope you love it as much as I do!!! click here to purchase the PDF pattern.
(if you're local, I'm teaching it as a class Saturday, June 21 at Sew Modern)
Ok, so a month ago, the lovely peeps at Robert Kaufman asked if I could make the Speedy Zip Dress in a knit for their Spring Quilt Market booth. I said yes (duh), but after lots and lots of tests, had to just write a whole different pattern for the knit fabric. So it looks similar, but this pattern is for knits, and has no zipper. (incidentally, that's also why the Speedy Zip dress pattern isn't done yet. Look for it on Sunday) SO, here's the dress in their booth (see it hanging back there?)
And here are all the (good) versions I made along the way!
she LOVED wearing this one (it's the one in the booth right now)
It was so hot, she was desperate to wear something this cool and comfy, wouldn't even wait for me to hem it or add pockets (not-hemming is TOTALLY an option with this lovely knit fabric)
and, just to show how fun this is, Google Photo made me a GIF, and I love it.
(you have to click on the thumbnail to get it to play)
You can see in the GIF that the hem-binding/bubble-skirt effect really helps keep the skirt down during all sorts of crazy play.
All the dresses were made with Robert Kaufman Laguna Cotton Jersey (all the prints are from Ann Kelle's new RemixKnits line), and I highly recommend using this awesome, soft, 100% cotton jersey if you make your own.
The dress pattern is now available in my Pattern Shop
I *FINALLY* did it! I built a little store here on my site! I know it seems like a little thing, but OMG was it hard for me.
(the big coupon is all used up, but please use BLOGREADER for 20% off all the time! Thank you so much for your support!)
random.org says #20 is the winner thanks for participating!
My friend Carrie is a beautiful person, and I'm lucky enough to be part of her bloghop, so here's a COMPLETELY BIASED WITH LOVE review of her new fabric line for Windham, PAINT!
isn't it pretty!!! I knew immediately that the rich colors and artistic theme and all the little details would appeal to my daughter, so I jumped at the chance to play with it. I let The Bean choose the fabrics she liked, and she chose the paintbrushes. So I quickly made a pretty little wrap around dress, (based on a vintage McCalls dress), and I sent it off to Carrie for a photoshoot.
but then I had the scraps on my cutting table, and I kept looking at them, so I decided to make another dress, using an old pattern of mine, the BoPeep Dress.
it's a cute dress, right? oh, it was AWFUL inside. I was racing, and only had about 2 hours to do the whole thing, in order to try to get it to Carrie before the photoshoot (it wound up not even making it, erg).
anyway, I was SO embarrassed by the inside of the dress that I obsessed over it for days, and after much mindbending and many tests, I figured out an awesome way to make the BoPeep dress so that it's completely reversible and awesome, with no hand sewing, not even 3 inches of whipstitching!
I realized about halfway through this process that it's exactly what happened LAST year, when Carrie released COLLAGE. I was inspired by her fabrics, rushed to make a sub-par sample using her fabrics, and then, once the rush was over, figured out an awesome pattern.
In honor of my original COLLAGE inspiration, I made a new SockSack for myself, out of PAINT!
anyway, once again, the samples I made for Carrie to use aren't as awesome as I'd like them to be, but the moral of the story is that her fabrics are INCREDIBLY inspirational, and I love them, and her, and hopefully you'll love PAINT! as soon as you get your hands on it too!
To help some lucky fabricaholic get some PAINT! quickly, Windham is letting me give away a charm pack! comment on this post, (you can just say hi, or you can tell me what you're inspired to make with PAINT!), and I'll pick a winner next week!
it's super clean and reversible, and, best of all, my daughter LOVES it. She has about 8 now, that she wears pretty much constantly.
I posted some of my tests on Instagram, (I'm @ramonarose over there), and some kind friends were awesome enough to test the pattern for me (Chris, Raych, Katie, and Rhonda, THANK YOU!).
The new dress is completely reversible, the way Katie did it in these pictures, or you can designate an outer and a lining, if you want. there's no hand-sewing, not even a little bit of whipstitching closed, and, best of all, it's super comfortable. My daughter can dress herself (the contrast front panel even makes it easy to put on the RIGHT way, and since it's reversible, there's no way for her to wear it inside out!!!), and loves all the options she's got.
To celebrate the new version of this pattern, (search bopeep on my site if you want to see the old version), I'm going to give away 3 copies of the pattern, so comment on this post, (you can just say hi, or you can tell me who you'll be making it for!), and I'll draw winners on Wednesday!
UPDATE: Giveaway winners are 2, 4, and 7, according to Random.org. I'll be contacting the winners via email, but if you were a winner, and you haven't heard from me, email me!
after getting lots of requests, I've revised and updated the SockSack pattern to have multiple sizes! (The Small size was the original sock size, Medium is perfect for cowls and scarves, and the Large is the right size for sweaters. 2-at-a-time sleeves, anyone?)
My lovely friend Elisabeth made a Medium sample for me, and it's divine:
The price of the pattern has gone up, but it now includes not only the 3 sizes, but also the BONUS zipper divider instructions. (like the ones pictured above)
It's finished! I made this little baby quilt as a fundraising item for Lyons Academy of Irish Dance (D and the Bean both dance here). My friend Sandi, @missplanner on instagram, was kind enough to share her shamrock block dimensions with me, so I whipped out the top in one night (patchwork is cotton, solids are linen), quilted it with shamrocks the next night, and bound it on the 3rd day. LOVE. It measures about 40" square and will hopefully make some Irish baby very happy.
(gratuitous Baby Crockett shot)