Dragon Tote is Solidly Done!

I have finished my Solids Only Tote (with only hours to spare!).  I'm going to post a few quick pictures tonight and will be back tomorrow with a few more words and details!!

And, oh, how good being done feels!!

You can read about the challenge by clicking on the button and see the other entries here!


Making Solid Progress {Dragon Tote}

Get it?  Solid progress? 

I'm talking about my (until now) neglected entry for the Solids-Only Tote Challenge! (details can be found here) that asks participants to create a tote or bag using only solid fabric.  The extra twist is 

that we must use either applique, reverse applique, or patchwork to adorn the tote.  Sounds like fun, right... and finally feeling real.

So, I've had a dragon swimming around in my imagination that I've declared must now come out.  Now.  Here is my tote start.

I know, I know... you can barely see my blue Mark-B-Gone pen, but wanted to show you where my sketch started.  It's loosy goosy and ready for snipping... since was to become reverse applique.

Reverse applique is a two layer sandwich where the top layer is cut in a stencil like picture allowing the second layer fabrics to show through.  Here are my second layer colors pulled (all solids -- so tough!!)

Confession time.  I sort of cheated.  Since I was still working through what the dragon would look like, I decided to cut the 'stencil' first, instead of committing to colors, sewing all the lines, and then cutting.  Glad to get that off my chest. 

With the stencil cut out I could begin to audition colors for the different portions of my dragon.  Red for the body.

Light and dark gray for the wing.  Only the light gray is shown below.

Fire orange spikes up and down the body and tail.  I also added the baby pink for the underbelly.

And the finishing touch was a hot pink/purple textured fabric for the front horn.

I know.  Your thinking, great dragon, but it doesn't look a thing like a tote.  I have some work to texture-ize and bring the dragon to life and I have to figure out how a tote is made.  Loving this challenge!!

Creative Tuesday: Three / 3 (#47)

It's Creative Tuesday and I'm excited to show you what I tried today! 

Wondering what a Creative Tuesday is?  Every two weeks we grab our pads and something to color with to create for the theme over at Mr. Toast's Creative Tuesday's assignment -- neat, no?

This week's theme is Three or 3 -- as in draw three of something.  I thought of so many things that I wanted to draw.  It began to get difficult to figure out what to do.  This time I let my creative room inspire me and decided to loosely doodle a trio of horses that I have hanging on my wall.

Horses are definitely animals that I adore.  I find them intelligent, inspiring, and elegant.  And incredible difficult to draw -- but that's part of the fun of this challenge, right?

I also wanted to play with my water color pencils to add some texture and light hints of color.  Here is what I came up with.  I had fun and have to say that I would definitely give horses another try!

Here is a closer picture of the doodle, since I am short on time to scan.  The overcast day isn't helping much, but you get the idea!

I hope you consider joining in this or the next assignment (really hope you do) and please take a look other artists in the community here.  


Friday Night Sewing {results}

Had a great night sewing and made a lot more progress on the NY-NY binding -- almost done, cleaned off my desk and workspace nicely, loaded a few bobbins, watched the movie 300, and made some serious progress on this confetti quilting piece of Shadow and Timber.

Here is Shadow and Timber in progress...

The confetti was laid out to create the grass and sky.

A close up of all the tiny scraps.

The meshing is overlaid and then pinned down.

Start to sew and secure the pieces in place as you go.

A look as some of the colors that are going in.

Most of the pieces are secured and textured at this point.

I start pulling fabrics for the details of the dogs, red frisbee, trees in the background, and picnic blanket.  I also cut out the pups Shadow and Timber from a print out to get a template for their bodies.

Shadow was cut out of black fabric and Timber out of white.  I still have the paper templates laid on top and everything is pinned in place to get a feel for the placements.

And a close up view.  

I'm really excited with how this piece is turning out!  I still need to sew all the pieces in place, finish planning the trees and sky, decide if I like how the picnic blanket is rumpled, make a picnic basket and then it's off to finishing details like the dogs eyes and nose, the dogs collars, and maybe some flowers.

Hope your sew-in was a huge success!! 

Handmade by Heidi

Can't wait to peak around and see what everyone else did.  You can see the other participants here!


I blinked and the week went by. Whoa!

And I sure haven't taken many pictures lately with the whole getting dark early thing, but one thing I have been enjoying are the spectacular colors through the tree silhouettes in the mornings.

Tonight you will find me here at my sewing machine, because it's a Friday Night Sew-In!!  You can read more about what they are over at Heidi's blog.  So happy to have the kick in the pants to dig deep, put my book down and get some sewing time in.

Handmade by Heidi

My plans for tonight you might ask?  Well, no solid game plan, but I'm hoping to finish hand sewing the binding on NY-NY if Sammy is done inspecting the quilt.  And we will see what else I get to.  I might want to start with a little tidying of my desk or cut fabric for my Solids Only Tote Challenge.

Want to wish you a wonderful night of sewing and I'll be back tomorrow with what I get done!!


Happy Three Years to Us!!

Three years ago today I married my best friend.  A part of me can't believe it's already been three years -- where has time gone; and the other part of me can't believe it's only been three years -- what an amazing adventure we are on together! 

I decided to doodle up the 'Old Apache Blessing' that we used in our ceremony.  The words are still so meaningful today!  {Feel free to download it or print it if it's your kind of thing.}

I Love you Mr. Happy.  More! (yup, more!)

Previous anniversary thoughts and more wedding details can be found here and here.


WIP: Sassy Sewing Saves Sanity

I was a little held back from sewing by the whole power outage and snow thing last week, but over the last few nights I have had my sewing machine humming beautifully, much to my delight!


Solids-Only Tote Challenge!

Here is the latest thing I am trying my hand at.  It's a month long challenge (details can be found here) that asks participants to create a tote or bag using only solid fabric.  The extra twist is that we must use either applique, reverse applique, or patchwork to adorn the tote.  Sounds like fun, right?

I am just starting to sketch out my ideas and design.  But I'll let you in that it has to do with Dragons!!  This is going to be a great mental break for me from all the other quilts I have rolling this month and a chance to get a dragon design that has been lingering in my head all summer, out!

Color Wheel Charm Swap

I have my charms cut and ready to be mailed for the latest round of the Charm Swap hosted by the lovely Kati  From The Blue Chair

My color this round was Blue-Violet in a dark and light fabric.  Tough color, but fun to look at so many designs.  And I am really looking forward to having a big stack of charms (5x5 inch squares) to play with!!

This quilt just feels so right. 
It's flying along, of course it's also about the half the size I normally work at, which is pretty nice for a change.  I have the front and back ready to go.  Here is the back.  It's a yard of cool NYC-esque fabric with a healthy border of that cream minky around it.
And the front you saw here, and I have added a border of dark blue linen around it.  I couldn't be happier with how it's looking!
I sandwiched it last night and my next step is to quilt it.  I am going to add the major roads and highways in the state.  Can't wait!!  And there is also one final touch I am going to keep secret.  Hoping to finish this one by the end of the weekend so I can show you a finish next week!
Winter Birds
This is a mostly top secret project that will result in a birthday/Christmas gift.  Yes, Mom (hi!!!) this one is for you <3

Shadow and Timber: confetti style

Hi Terri!!  I am excited to have gotten a healthy start on this art quilt!  I am working from this picture of two adorable labs, Shadow and Timber, playing frizbee.  Terri contacted me about turning this picture into a confetti style art quilt and together we devised a plan.

Here are most of the pieces prepped and ready to go.  And yes, I am going to make you wait one more day to hear more of the details and see how it's going.  But, I promise, it will be worth the wait!!

Laughing Leaves with Frieda Anderson

Can't wait to roll up my sleeves and dig back in!  You can also check out what I learned about using fusible in an art quilt!

Star Struck
Star quilt-a-long by Melissa at Happy Quilting.  I am still standing at one block.

I'm glad I had no deadline for myself on this one, but I am sure it will be an awesome winter project and just the right thing to pick up after all this crazy holiday sewing!

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

This Week's Work in Progress (WiP) Stats:
Last WiP Wednesday Total: 6
New Projects: 1
Finished Projects: 0
Total WiP's: 7


Creative Tuesday: Thank You / Thanksgiving (#46)

It's Creative Tuesday and gosh I haven't fit this creative stretching in since September.  Whoa! 

Wondering what a Creative Tuesday is?  Every two weeks we grab our pads and something to color with to create for the theme over at Mr. Toast's Creative Tuesday's assignment -- neat, no?

This week's theme is Thanksgiving or Thank You.  I could be really literal for the holiday or just express a gracious feeling in my rendering.  Well, I have to admit that I still have logs and firewood on my brain and that's all that kept coming out in my sketches.  So, I embraced it. 

Here is the pen ink drawing.  That's Katie on the left and Sammy on the right.  Yup, the golden retrievers that rule my existance.  And this looks a whole lot like a certain picture from this post I think, but you be the judge.

And in the spirit of trying new things and the whole creative stretching I decided to color it in both with GIMP (a GNU image manipulation program -- free to download) and also with markers and color pencils. 

First up.  The version I colored on the computer. 

I do like the way I can audition colors for different things with GIMP.  I also like that I can have any 'ole color I can dream up in my coloring box.  What do you think?

And here is the more traditional markers and color pencils version.  I have to admit that the coloring of the pups didn't come out nearly at all.  They were a lot more yellow/golden in my version, but again I'll embrace the way it was scanned.

And because I can't stop mucking with things.. I took the marker and color pencil version back into GIMP and added a canvas texture.  Oh, this stuff is just so much fun!!

And I do apologize if I didn't get the words just right.  I was sketching along and then realized the instructions asked for either Thanksgiving, or Thank you -- geez, can we just chalk it up to getting back into the swing of things?  I'll try harder next time :)

I hope you consider joining in this or the next assignment (really hope you do) and please take a look other artists in the community here.   


My Weekend Wood Stacking Adventures

Like I was saying, we were very busy this weekend.  Luckily power was restored in full Friday night and we could start getting back to normal things. 

Like taking pictures of the pups.  Katie is on the left, Sammy on the right.

Once some of the clean up was done we played.  You can see all the wood we cut and stacked in the back for drying.  It still needs to be split, but that might be a spring time thing. 

Do you you see Sammy in this one?

Katie got in a little running too.  They were so happy to goof off and chase each other.

See those big pieces on the right?  That is from the big oak that feel on the power lines.  Each one of those probably means a nice warm night.  Crazy how big they are -- and heavy!!

More goofing off was order...

And life is funny sometimes, because as I was browsing my google reader the other day and I ran across this post from What's Up Whimsy which had this picture ... which I of course pinned. 

...hmmm,  and now it looks like I have my own version!

With a couple of silly goldies to boot.

And this one is perfect for a reference to how big those crazy logs are!  The biggest is almost as tall as Sammy!

And lastly, due to the storm, our Halloween party was pushed back a week, so this past weekend we played Halloween.  Here I am with the mister.  I'm a pirate.  He's a bony zombie. 

And you know. 

He won scariest costume.  Craziness!! 

Cheers to a good week and hope you are smiling no matter what you have going on!!
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