Friday, May 27, 2016

Sewing Room

Hi again.  I am back to share with you my new sewing room.  Not new, really, but newly moved to, and arranged, in the original room I set my sewing room up in, about 16 years ago, when our oldest daughter moved out of the house.
I love this room.  While it is much smaller than the space I was using in the living room, it is by far and away, my favorite room for sewing.  The view is pretty.  The light is good both day time, and at night, with overhead lighting.  I can sew in there in my jammies and no one can sneak up on me at the front window!  And I can close the door on a mess when I am working on a project.
Come on in.
I set my farmhouse table across the room, instead of up against the wall this time.  I like it this way much better, for ease of moving about from one machine to another.
The table on the far side of the room holds one of my embroidery machines, with the other embroidery machine sitting opposite, on the long table.  I have an office mat on the floor, and can slide from one to the other with ease, and often have something that I am working on each machine at the same time.  
The machine closest in view, is my Viking.  I do a lot of my sewing on this machine.  And again, I have an office mat on the floor beneath it, so that my chair can roll around to what I need quickly.  I keep a large rotary mat on the table for quick trims, and an apple lazy susan with pins, and tins of all of the items I need when I sew.  I keep a mini ironing board at the end of the table for pressing pieces as I go.  I set up my little antique Featherweight machine when I am piecing a quilt.  I also use this machine for any classes I take.
I need to utilize the space underneath the table too.  I have bins of fabric, and also a couple of stacking drawers that hold yarn stash.  As well as yet another sewing machine. 
On the wall to left of door as you walk in, is a desk where I keep my Singer One that I do all of my free motion quilting on.  I typically just keep my free motion foot on it, and use this machine specifically for that.  Also on this desk top is my laptop, which I use mostly here in my sewing room, where Podcasts have recently become my favorite thing!!!
The gooseneck Ott lamp is a must for me!  I use it all the time!  Next to the desk, is a cabinet I repurposed from the living room.  I have my quilting books, and knit and crochet books stored here, as well as some gifts and things on display.
 On top of the cabinet is one of my antique machines. It is SO heavy!  On the machine is a piece of quilt that was from one of the quilts that my Great Grandma made.  
 The closet doors have been removed, and I wallpapered the inside of the closet, and had an electrical outlet put in.   Across the closet is my beautiful Grandmother's Flower Garden quilt that my Great Grandma made in the early 30's.  This quilt is in excellent shape, and I love seeing it on display here.  I have secured it by placing a tension rod at the top of the doorway and just folded it over the top to make it the proper length. I have a few more of the quilts that my Grandma made.  This one is in the best shape.
The chest of drawers holds a large amount of my fabric stash, and is Kon Mari folded by color.
The little toy sewing machine you see sitting atop the red stool, was my Grandmother's (Nana) when she was a little girl. 
I still need to go through and organize a lot of the things inside the closet.  But when I am in there looking for something, having a light in there sure does help!
The sliding doors open up to the back patio and pool beyond.  It is a pretty and peaceful view.
The vertical shutter holds notes and cards that I want to save, as well as a calendar. 
On the wall above, and to the right of my sewing table, is a design wall. 
 On  the back wall of the room is my cutting table.  This is actually a piece designed to be used in the kitchen.  It has a sturdy butcher block top, with a large and deep drawer, with shelves below.  I have a large cutting mat on the table top, as well as a wooden crate that holds my rotary cutters and scissors.
To the left of the table is another light tree.  You can never have enough task lighting!  To the left of the light, are two more carts that hold various sewing supplies and fabric.  On the top of the aqua cart is a wooden tool box that holds all of my spray starch, water refills for iron, and quilt basting sprays.  On top of the far left cart is dish drainer that holds all of my small design boards, and Accuquilt dies.
On the wall above the cutting table is beautiful Amish quilt that my Mom and Dad brought back to me from a trip they took to Amish Country.  Also an old antique mailbox that I painted aqua.  The outside of it holds magnets, and inside holds my catalogs and Joann's coupons.
This is a working room.  I use everything you see in here.  It is packed, and not as pretty as I think it could be in a larger space, but it is cozy and perfectly designed to me and my needs!!!
Thanks for coming by to see me in my sewing space today. 
Toodle Loo.....
XO  Kris

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

My New Guest Room/Office

Good morning!!!  I want to begin by saying a huge thank you, to all who commented, and made me feel so much better.  I thank you for taking the time to leave me such kind words.  There has, in fact, been a lot going on in my life, and it has been an adjustment.  But I have been keeping very busy, and things are much better.  I have been painting, cleaning, purging, reorganizing, shopping, decorating, etc.  You get the idea.  We had the two rooms where Erika and Noah were in, recarpeted last week.
I was going to have these rooms painted before I did anything, but that didn't happen.  And actually, the paint is good.  I like the color for both of the rooms.  I will be doing the trim work though.  My original plan for this room was to be Greg's office.  And the other room, a guest room.  But I changed my mind.  This room will be Greg's office.  But I decided to also put a bed in here, so that it can double as a guest room too.  It is a daybed, and has an extra bed underneath, for more sleeping.  I liked the idea of a daybed, so that most of the time, it is more like a couch.  I began with an inspiration piece for decorating this room.  It was a quilt I made about 17 years ago for Drew.  I am "borrowing" it, as he wasn't using it anyway.
I was wanting a sort of Nautical/Americana type thing for this room.
I made up the bed with fresh pad, sheets, and blankets.  Topped it with this quilt, and then began layering it with fun pillows.  Across the back, I put a red body pillow that I had.  I bought two new standard size Eddie Bauer shams in a navy blue patchwork print.  I am using those as bolsters along each side.  Then yesterday, I went on a pillow hunt.  I found the nautical red one, with cord ties at Kohl's.  I also found the navy blue at Kohl's on clearance for 13.00, and the Friends, Family, Freedom one too.  Then I went to Target, and found nothing that worked.  I went to Burlington Coat Factory, and hit the jackpot.  I had never been in there.  It is a hit and miss kind of discount place.  I found the fun loopy red, white and blue big pillow there, as well as the pillow shams.  This is exactly the look I was after, and was very pleased with finished look of the daybed!
I found several other decorative items at Burlington!! 
I found the nautical sign on shelf.  It says, "Drop anchor with the one you love"  I had the iron stars, and just layered those along the back of the shelf.  On the bookcase, I added photos, and a few other nautical pieces.  The lantern with candle in it on left was a gift from my son Drew.  I found the rope ball bookend at Burlington. 
The desk is a beautiful piece that my girlfriend gave me.  She was selling her big house, and moving to a condo, so she got rid of a lot of things.  She also gave me the daybed!  There were a few scratches on it, but I used a furniture pen kit to color them, and you can't even see them now at all.  This is two pieces.  The desk, with the smaller filing cabinet piece on the right.  I MUST find a way to hide the white cable cord that is hanging from ceiling, it is hideous!  This desk is awesome!  It holds all of Greg's computer accessories, and hides the ugly stuff.  The printer is housed in lower left cabinet.  The cables all have a housing in back.  And all of his junk stuff, is hidden inside.  Now to hide the cords from the telly and the cable!
 The pillow in the office chair is one I made last year.  The Telly is on the wall, and can tilt up and down, and side to side for viewing. 
I wanted to put some type of a table next to the bed, but the bed sits up high, so a typical nightstand wouldn't work.  And there isn't enough room for anything very big.  I could not believe my luck yesterday when I was getting ready to check out at Burlington!!  They had a cute display set up in front of store with this navy blue table and chairs.  I looked at the table and realized it would be PERFECT!  It is the right color, and folds up almost flat.  When extended, it is the perfect height for setting a little something on if you are in there watching Telly or need to set water and glasses and such on table at night. 
I laid a red and white ticking fabric tea towel on top.  I set this dish of sand that I brought home from Hawaii, with lots of sea shells in it, on the table.  The dish belonged to my Great Grandma. 
The table is the perfect color.  Because it was used as display, I asked to discount it, and they did.  We will take this with us in the trailer too.  It folds up as flat as a dinner plate!
The "rug" is not a rug at all.  It is a table topper I made out of some Americana fabric scraps I had.
I will find a proper rug to put there.
The navy blue curtain was one I had made for when Noah was here.  It matched his Mario bedding.  It also makes for a perfect match in here now.
I see some dust up there!  I need to take it down and wash it, and rehang.  I think I will add some rope detail at the finials.  In the closet doorway, where there once were doors, I have placed a tension rod with red grommet topped panels.  I found these at a thrift one day, for a song.  They are the heavy duty, room darkening ones too!  If you have priced those lately, you know these were a steal!!  Inside the closet, I have a dresser that belonged to Nana, where I keep toys, and arts and crafts for the grands.
Taped to the rod is the color swatch that I was thinking of painting this room.  But I am going to keep it paper bag brown.
 I had a blast putting this room together!  In our original plans, we were to be putting Greg's exercise equipment in here too.  Don't tell Greg, but that's NOT happening!!!  Shhhhh!!
 Love, love, love the way this room turned out!
I was going to do the sewing room today too, but I will make that for the next time.  Lastly, I will show you the new panels I found for my family room.  Love them.  They are an ecru linen, with a sort of olive green embossed leaf pattern.
Oh they are so, so pretty.  Last weekend when Greg was gone on a camping trip, I bought these panels, and a new curtain rod.  But I couldn't find anyone to help me put it up!!!!  I had to wait for him to get home.  I also painted the table that our Telly sits on.

I also tried to paint the little ottoman that sits there next to table, to hide all of the cords for the electronics.  EPIC fail!  I wound up covering it in a remnant I had, but I didn't have enough to do it without piecing the top. I will find another remnant that I like, and recover it.  I also painted the guest bathroom while Greg was away too.  That will be another post.  I haven't finished the d├ęcor in there yet.
I found this darling table side lamp at Hobby Lobby.
The burlap two toned flower is actually a magnetic piece that I bought to add to it.  They have all sorts of these lamp adornments, you put onto the shade and it stays with a strong magnet!  Who knew?!!
Yes, I have been a busy bee.  And my body is screaming at me for a rest.  Today I will be meeting my friend Jae for lunch and later this week, I plan a trip to Glen Ivy Spa for some R & R. 
Tomorrow...stay tuned to see what I did with my new sewing room!
 Tootle Loo....
XO  Kris

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Checking In

Hello out there?  I don't have much to report.  Not that there isn't a lot of things going on in my life, but rather most of them are more of the personal nature, and it just isn't appropriate blog post material.  We are going through some changes here.  I am adjusting. 
I have been bound and determined to learn to knit socks.  They are a bit of scary thing to me.  I am trying to figure out which way I am most comfortable knitting them.  I did my very first pair, using double pointed needles.  I found that very awkward.  I made a lot of mistakes,  But I did it.  I frogged the second one, and so, I only have one, ugly, house sock to show for it.  I didn't even take a photo, it is not very pretty!
The second time I wanted to learn to do magic loop.  I used a good tutorial, and purchased the pattern to follow.  I followed it exactly, and a sock was made! 
I used a Knit Picks cotton/linen blend, and I didn't care for the texture of it.  It doesn't have the stretch and give that a sock should have.  So, I didn't bother making the second sock. 
Then, I saw a technique using a very small 9" circular.  I ordered my circulars and two sets of dpn's from Hiya Hiya, and was going to join in on the sock KAL with The Grocery Girls on Ravelry.   Do check out their podcasts, they are such great fun!!  I cast on, and I found the needles so terribly slippery.  I was using fingering #1 sock yarn.  It felt like dental floss and toothpicks in my hands.  I had to frog it.  I set out once again, this time with a dk weight yarn, and size 4 needles.  Back to magic loop.  I am cruising along just fine.  I think my friend was right.....stick with the dk and sport weight yarns, and slightly larger needles, until I am very comfortable with sock making.  And so, that is what I will do.
This is a Merino Wool/Acrylic blend.  It feels good in my hands, and has plenty of stretch.  I am making this pair a full size sock.  Not an ankle sock.  I think that my preferred set of tools for sock making, will be magic loop.  Kind of strange at first, but I do like it a lot.
My house is in total disarray.  Erika and Noah have moved out, and into their own cute little condo, leaving me with two rooms to do something with.  First things first.  Pull the carpet and pad up!
I was going to paint the two rooms myself, but I just don't have it in me right now.  I will pick paint colors this week, and get someone out to paint.  The carpet should be here in the next 10 days. 
We are going with the lower left seen on sample board.  When my son Drew moves out, we will order the carpet to do the rest of the rooms.  Ours, his, and living room.  And I have decided I will be moving my sewing room back into Drew's room.  It is the largest in the house, still in front of house, with good natural light.  And I can have a living room for entertaining once again.
My girlfriend gave me a huge stack of her old knitting magazines.  I am having fun going through those!
Haven't been sewing a quilt lately, but I do have a quilt in the wings, ready to begin!  I have been doing a lot of machine embroidery.  Most of which I cannot show, as they are gifts.
This was a small tote bag I did for my Mom.
I had an old high school friend contact me to make a hat for the upcoming arrival of his new granddaughter.  He sent me the colors of her nursery, and I came up with this.
We are getting ready to bring the boat up to Big Bear Lake for the summer.  We are so eager to be spending time up there.  We will be bringing our new trailer up for a week in July, as well as several weekends.  We also have several other small trips planned throughout the summer that we will be taking it on. 
My garden has done absolutely awful this year.  I have had  what I think is bunnies, eat most everything to the quick.  Despite fencing, and chicken wire on gates, something has destroyed almost all of it.  I have kind of lost the desire to work it now.  I do have pumpkins going, and looking good, as well as tomatoes and a few other things.  I will keep those going as long as I can.  I also planted lots and lots of flowers from seed, and none of them came up. 
My other things are blooming beautifully in the yard though.

I have been hooked on a PBS series that I am binge watching on Netflix called, Call The Midwife.  I am two thirds done with it.  I don't know what I will do when it is over.  I have enjoyed  it so much!  It has been a wonderful escape for me lately, during a not so great time in my life.
That's all I've got.  To be honest, I have thought seriously of ending my blog. I don't seem to have the traffic I once did, and I don't really feel I have much to offer right now.  We shall see. 
Tootle Loo for now.
XO  Kris

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Quilt Finish

I finished another quilt that was made for a shop sample at my local quilt shop.  I actually finished it a couple of weeks ago, and delivered it to the shop.  The photos I took were all bad.  The colors of the quilt are very muted, and it didn't photograph well outside.  The photo the shop owners posted to their webpage shows it much better than any of the photos I took.
The pattern is available on Moda Bake Shop website for free.  The shop in town, Sewn Together, is selling kits with all of the fabric needed to make this quilt.  Diane, one of the shop owners did a beautiful job with her machine quilting on it.

There was a lot of point matching in this quilt.  I do like it, but these are not the colors that I naturally gravitate towards.  However, I think it is pretty, and very Spring/Summer like.

It was my intention to do a no bulk binding tutorial when I put the binding on this, but I completely forgot.  I will do one soon.

This quilt went together much quicker than the first one I did.  No applique on this one.  Just piecing, lots of piecing.  It has a nice scrappy look to it. 
When it is displayed horizontally, the design in negative space, shows X's.   When it is displayed vertically, the negative space shows more of a chain effect.  Fun pattern.
If you are local to the Corona/Norco area, go to Sewn Together and check out this fun pattern.
Lots, lots, lots going on here.  I am trying to get back into the swing of blogging.  But it may be a bit.
XO  Kris

Monday, April 11, 2016

Maiden Voyage In Our New Trailer

Well, we had our first trip in the new trailer, and I am happy to report that all went smoothly.  We were off like a herd of turtles at about 5:00 PM on Friday night.  Arriving at our destination less than an hour later. 
The only little hiccup of the weekend was with the first site that they assigned us.  We pulled up.  I got out to wave him in smoothly.  But, there was no way we were going to fit. We had to go back to the main office and have a new site assigned.  A larger, more expensive site of course, but it worked out perfectly.   My brother David and sister in love, Glenda, were already there waiting for  us.  They had not seen our trailer yet, and it was fun that they came down to share in our excitement.  They even brought us Sprinkles Cupcakes!!!   They had already eaten dinner, so didn't stay too long.  We grilled up some hot dogs for an easy dinner, and then went inside for the night.

Our middle daughter Erika and grandson Noah came along for the first night.  We got all settled in, trying out the shower, and making up beds, and everything seemed to work just perfectly. 
The next morning Greg made our coffee for us at the outdoor kitchen, using our favorite camp pot.  The kind that perks.  Oh how good it tasted. 
Bright and early, we had a visitor.  My nephew Chad.  He stayed for most of the day, and even though we did have some light rain off and on, we all had such a good time.  There was a rousing game of Uno under the awning.
 We had Mimosa's, and toasted to many good times ahead.
Erika and Noah and I went down to the community center to participate in one of their scheduled crafts.  We made chalk salt candles. 
It looks like sand.  I had never heard of such a thing as this before.  But it was so clever, and so much fun!  They had buckets of salt on the table, and each person had a paper plate, and there were many containers of sidewalk chalk to choose from.  We had our choice of two different shapes of glasses to use.  They were actually plastic.  You scoop a little salt onto your plate, and then take a color of chalk you want to make, and then begin to rub it over the grains of salt, until all salt is colored to desired shade.

Pour your colored salt into cup, and then make another color.  It was simple, and fun.  I thought it was very clever too.  When our cups were full to the top, we took it to the young people who were doing the class, and they sealed the salt with a thick layer of hot glue, placing a tea lite candle down in the center.  The glue keeps the salt from spilling out, and the tea lite can be replaced when it has burned down.

We lit them that night for dinner outside on the picnic table. 
 Aren't they so pretty!!!  What a great craft to do with your little ones.  And big ones too! 
Later on that day, Erika and Noah went down onto the beach where they were doing tie dye Tee shirts.  They each did one for themselves, and one for Geeps.  They turned out darling!  I wish I had made one too.  I did not get many photos this weekend.  I wish I had been better about that. 
Later that evening, we had a big dinner of fresh ahi steaks that my brother David caught on a recent fishing trip way out in the ocean.  Greg grilled them on our new Smokey Joe, and I steamed some fresh veggies, and made a Caesar's Salad.  I had also made a big pot of chili earlier in the day, so we had that too.  I think I caught Gregger's with a tester of ahi in his mouth.
That night, our son Drew and his girlfriend Christine came out for dinner.  We dined al fresco, under the canopy of clouds in the sky.  It was delightful! 
Eri and Noah went back home after dinner.  Drew and Christine hung around at camp with us.  We toasted some marshmallows and had S'more's.
After Drew and Christine left, we went inside and had nice hot showers, and then watched The Martian inside the trailer.  Well, we may have both fallen asleep about midway through, but we started to watch it.  It was good!  The bed in the trailer is so comfy.  I am not a good sleeper, anywhere.  Not at home, and certainly not away from home.  But I slept very well both nights in our new camp bed. 
It rained HARD in the night.  It woke us up at about 3:00 in the morning.  The next day was a bit muddy at camp!  We cooked breakfast outside in the outdoor kitchen.  Pancakes, bacon, sausage and farm fresh eggs.  I had squeezed fresh OJ and brought it from home.

I took over when it was time for the pancakes.  Or pannycakes, as our family calls them. 
Not a flattering photo, but oh my gosh, I see photos of myself, and boy do I need to lose weight!  And that hair.  Ugh...I think I hate it.  It was so attractive on my Dad.  But I feel like I am 100 years old with white hair!  I also have a skin condition called vitiligo.  My Dad had it too.  Both of us getting it at about 50.  The pigment is leaving my skin everywhere.  It has begun to spread across my face, starting at my forehead, and dripping downward, revealing a white and pink blotchy face.  I know that there are many things far worse that I could have.  And for that I am grateful.  But I feel like it leaves me looking lifeless.  And with the white hair too, I feel OLD!!!!
I brought my knitting, but only took it out of the bag one time, knitting only a couple of rows.  We were just so busy!
We had an absolute ball.  Fitting a whole lot into a weekend.  We also rode a 4 man bike (Surry?) for an hour.  My legs and fanny were screaming!!! 
And Geeps made us all some home made popcorn on Saturday afternoon as well.   So, for our first trip out, it was an A plus!!!! 
We got home, unloaded it, washed it, and put it away until next time.  We are shooting for a weekend away a month.  And then in the summer, probably a lot more weekends at Big Bear, as well as our week long vacation there.  We snuck a few minutes in every once in a while to watch The Masters while we were cleaning. 
A great weekend was  had by all!!!  We can't wait to go again!
Happy Trails........................................
PS Marsha Brown, you asked what we tow the trailer with.  I have a 2004 GMC Yukon Denali.  I love this car. I wish we did have more towing capacity, but we were not willing to also purchase a new car to do so.  When this car expires, I intend to get another one!