Thursday, May 27, 2010

today i decided that i have a love/hate relationship with my dyson. after neglecting the floors for about 2 weeks, without even a quick swiffer in between - between the two of us and the two cats, the floors - as you can imagine - were disastrous. i swear there was a thin layer of fur covering just about every floor surface. (okay, a bit of an exaggeration, but, there definitely was a layer of fur in parts.) never having hardwood floors before, i purchased this handy-dandy tool called a 'hard floor tool', which is supposed to attach to my telescope reach handle, so i could just vacuum the floors (from a standing position), rather than on my hands and knees, using the hose & an attachment brush. save our backs, shall we? anyways. obviously, the engineers at dyson do not have pets. or are really, really short or do not want to save their backs, because the telescope reach isn't tall enough to vacuum from a standing position. in fact, instead of holding the handle, i'm vacuuming while holding the hose. and i'm only 5'3". i can't even imagine the angst and frustration of someone taller than me trying to vacuum with this 'telescopic reach'. so, in my frustration, i called dyson. and they don't have an extender for the extender. instead, it was suggested to me to just attach the hard floor tool to the hose, and use it that way. i explained to them that, that would defeat the purpose, as i wanted to vacuum standing rather than on my hands & knees. sigh. i feel so defeated by my vacuum cleaner. and to think i loved her for so long...until hardwood floors came into my life...

but anyways. now for some quilty stuff:

i arrived to work yesterday, to find 2 packages waiting for me, one of which contained this:

Riley Blake Fabric

8 fat quarters from riley blake's wheels collection, to make what? another crazy eights quilt, of course! this will be the 7th crazy eights quilt i've made. what can i say - i just love the pattern! but today, i had a revelation. previously, i've literally spent hours and hours separating the squares - a, b, c & d - into piles for each block - each which consist of one 'a', one 'b', two 'cs' and two 'ds'. so, instead of just wading through the whole pile of squares like before, i just switched up the fabrics - so, for each block, square a had fabric #1 on top, square b had #2, and so on and so forth. and let me tell you, it worked like a charm. only minutes instead of hours were spent separating the blocks into piles:

Crazy Eights #7

aren't they cute?!? i am really, really resisting the urge to start sewing, because of two things: 1.) i need to be at work in about 2 hours, and 2.) i know if i start, the other things that need to be done today (ie., empty dishwasher, declutter kitchen counter) will be neglected. but, on the upside, i will have a good start on my blocks... ok! enough already. i need to stop.

one last thing before i go for today:

Lululemon, 05/26/10

on lululemon's website. i can't decide if it's funny. or if it's gross. or funny & gross. i'll let you decide.

Monday, May 24, 2010

so, it's just after midnight, and it's still 75 degrees outside. what happened to spring?

i made a little bit of progress tonight. i turned some of this (a bunch of vintage linen fabric scraps i bought off of etsy, that i had absolutely no idea what to do with):

Vintage Linen Scraps

into this:

Spidey Block!
what a great way to use some of these little scraps!

i used the spiderweb tutorial found on i wanted to try this block specifically for two reasons:

a.) i've been obsessing - OBSESSING - about it for the past week, ever since i came across these spidey web blocks on a different blog


b.) i wanted to try this non-paper piecing method of creating these blocks.

i'm still undecided. i honestly thought this block was going to be fairly complicated, but i found that the most tedious part of it (other than measuring & marking on the original triangles that were cut from the 12.5" square were cutting the strips. seriously! do you see that pile up there? all the pieces are different sizes, so it's not like i could stack a bunch up and! i cut them one by one. i know there is a better method out there - like stacking up similarly-sized pieces, etc. - but, anyways. i found the strip cutting to be the most time-consuming part of the whole process, because some you want to be fatter (2"), some skinner (1" and 1.5"), so, well, it's still a learning process. i will probably try the paper piecing method next, to see which one i think is easiest... this version was pretty easy, but there is a lot of waste with the cutting off the "corners" (or what have you) of the original triangles at the end. so we'll see. but, i have to say that i am pretty impressed with how this block turned out, considering that i had no idea what i was doing (for the most part), and sewed it pretty quickly.

*and then*, i was going through one of my fabric bins, and came across these fabrics:


ooh. ahh. i'm sure they were meant for yet another crazy eight quilt, but, i don't know...i think these are versatile enough to mix in with other fabrics!

and speaking of search of my patricia bravo fabrics, i came across the *awesomest* fabric website, hawthorne threads. i've already started a wish list; i'm sure this site will be one of my most frequently shopped! they just have a wonderful, wonderful selection of fabrics. soo excited!

ok. that's enough for this time. i'm getting ambitious with this blog...hopefully, i will keep it (somewhat) up! :)

Sunday, May 23, 2010

so i was reading the paper today, and there was an article that had this statement:

Chicago Tribune, 05/23/10

honestly, i can't even remember what the article was about, decluttering or something along those lines. (you know, because i am *always* thinking about decluttering...but i just never get around to doing it... :) ) but when i read that, i was like, 'hmmph! so true!' however, i still really love 'later'...

i also had a chance to go through the new issue of quilt that i picked up the other day today. i found some new fabric that i just *have* to have:

"Paradise" by Patricia Bravo

this is the paradise line by patricia bravo. i just love the bold & rich color combinations! (*possible* spoiler alert...i'm thinking these may be some really nice fabrics to incorporate into my vqb blocks!) ooh...ahhh...can't wait! guess what i will be googling very well *all night* tonight?!?

i also saw a really, really nice quilt in there, too:

"Summer Breeze" - Quilts, June/July 2010

it's a pretty large quilt, coming out at 89x101". and honestly, i really wouldn't say that this type of quilt is "my style", with the diagonal block placement, sashing, etc. - as i tend to like more "scrappier"-looking quilts - but, how *absolutely fabulous* would this look, all done up in denyse schmidt's katie jump rope?!? i've had those fat quarters forever; they were originally intended for a yellow brick road quilt that never materialized. (these fat quarters are actually the only really nice memory i have of going on a weeklong trip to las vegas with my family in october, 2007 in which my luggage got stolen...enough said!)

and finally, another cute, cute baby quilt that i just *need* to make, for no reason in particular:

"Safari Zoo" - Quilt, June/July 2010

is this not the most adorable quilt you have ever seen, ever?!? i just love it. i briefly read through the instructions, and apparently, the black/white vertical rows are wonky-quilted...just alternating black & white fabrics sewn all weird so they mimic the black/white print in the large border rows. what a great idea, instead of just using some zebra-print fabric, like i would have done! (or am i just a slacker?) this quilt kit is definitely on my wish list! luuurve it!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

the good, the bad and the ugly!

so i was commenting on all my photos on flickr, and then a realization came to me: why am i commenting on them *here*, when i can comment on them on my *blog* (that i never post on...)!

so i present to you the fruits of my labor the past week:

Crazy Eights: Unisex-ish
i found this one in a half-completed state in my pile of unfinished quilt's a unisex-ish quilt, although i think it leans a little more to the "boy" side...cute nonetheless, though!

Charm Square Quilt
this one was made with charm squares that resulted from a rotary cutting accident when cutting another "crazy eight" quilt - made with amy butler love fabrics.

A disaster in the Bake Shop!
oh...the shame. i'm not really sure what happened with this one. this one was supposed to be like the one on, but turned out disastrous. the charms were pieced perfectly, it was the sashing mishap...instead of just cutting them the length of the fabric (since i had enough anyways!), i *pieced* them - need i say more? it is a totally lopsided quilt. i tried to salvage it, and it just ended up more lopsided. sigh. another one for the "bad" pile!