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Instagram Mini Quilt Swap Basics ~ Schnitzel & Boo Round 3

I mentioned before that I’ve jumped headfirst into the world of Instagram swapping, primarily IG mini quilt swapping. Round three of the Schnitzel & Boo Mini Quilt Swap was actually my second IG mini swap. I’m sharing it now because Round Four is open for sign-ups, and you might want to jump in! (Find out how to join by clicking the image at the very bottom of this post.) Continue reading

Covert Robin: What I Received

Yesterday, I shared what I sent off to my Covert Robin. Today, I get to share the lovely gift that I received! Ella from Throw a Wench in the Works sewed for me, and she sent me Un-Paper Towels! These have been on my to-do list for so long, and I’ve never gotten around to making them!
If you’ve ever read my About Me page, you know that the only paper product that we use in our home is toilet paper. I didn’t even own a paper towel holder, so I had to run out to Target and buy one! (Should I call it an un-paper towel holder?)

The towels that Ella sewed have a decorative cotton woven front and absorbent cotton terrycloth on the back. Each towel has snaps so that you can snap them together to roll them onto the holder and unsnap them to use them. When you’re done, you just toss them into the wash and reuse them. Yay! No more paper towel waste! (Not that we had paper towel waste here before, but my towels were all in a drawer. Now they can be pretty on the counter! If you use paper towels, you should make yourself some of these!)Funny story? As I finished up the pictures, my 13-year-old, Allen, reached for one of the towels to dry off his hands, and his older sister, Samantha, said, “You can’t use those. They’re too pretty. Use the towels in the drawer first!” I had to point out that the towels were made to be used, not just to look pretty! They do look pretty, though, don’t they?

Ella also sent me this beautiful fabric-covered journal which is going to get plenty of use! I carry a notebook with me everywhere I go so that I can keep all of my thoughts and lists and plans in one place.
Thank you so much, Ella! I am thrilled with everything!

Covert Robin: What I Sent

I had so much fun participating in the Covert Robin Swap hosted by Imagine Gnats! The Covert Robin is a mystery round-robin swap. The participants know who they’re sending to, of course, but it’s a secret who you’ll be receiving from! When you’re planning your gift, you have to be sneaky about searching for likes and dislikes of your recipient. (Can I admit that I felt a little stalker-ish when I was researching my partner? It was fun, though!)

My CR recipient was Shannon from I’m Working on a Project. My assignment arrived in my inbox while I was waiting for Allen’s track team to finish their early Wednesday morning run across the bridge, so my first look at Shannon’s blog was on my I-phone. The incredibly amazing dinosaur quilt that she finished last year is the header on her blog, and I was awestruck. Really.  And, I was only looking at the tiny pictures on my phone!  You have to go check out Seymour before you read any further!  I can sew pretty much any clothing, but art quilts leave me with my mouth hanging open. Scrolling through Shannon’s posts, I ran across something about using a soldering iron in the construction of a quilt, and I walked around the rest of the day mumbling, “I’m supposed to sew something for someone who uses a soldering iron when she sews?!”

I took a deep breath, though, and took a peek over at her Pinterest account where I found a few ideas. Shannon likes bright colors, and I found a few things that she’d pinned and said she liked the colors, specifically turquoise and lime green. I also found that she’d pinned a couple of little credit card/discount card pouches.  A little digging through my stash for scraps of some fun brightly-colored fabrics, and a trip to Joanns for some Kona cotton, and I was ready to get started!

I used my Sunny Days Beach Bag Tutorial to make the main gift – the tote bag that you see above. (Everyone can use an extra tote bag, right?) I just reduced the finished size to make it a roomy tote, rather than a carry-the-whole-house-plus-the-kitchen-sink bag. For the front of the criss-cross pocket, I pieced fabric scraps in strips to add some fun interest.
I added a couple of inside pockets, too, and loops on the inside seams for those little clippy things. They’re great for hooking your keys or anything with a handle that you don’t want to lose in the bottom of a big bag.

On the back, I adding in a strip of the fabric that I used for the handle to give it a little extra color.

I whipped up a quick key fob to match. (The tutorial for that is right here: Fun Fabric Fobs.)

Finally, I designed and sewed a little zippered card/coin pouch with wrap-around zipper, similar to those that Shannon had pinned on her Pinterest.

What do you think? I know that I could use something in my purse to hold all those membership cards that keep piling up! I like the way this turned out so much that I’m planning to share a tutorial for making them next week! Be sure to come back and check it out!

Lastly, I included some goodies, all wrapped up in a bow. (I figured that if she hated everything else, she could drown her disappointment in chocolate and lollipops. She didn’t hate it, though! Yay! She says she likes it all, and she’s already tucked her latest crochet project into the bag.)

Tomorrow, I’ll share the amazing gift that I received in the Covert Robin Swap. It just arrived on my front doorstep yesterday, so I still have to get some pictures, but I love it!

This Time it Really Was Blood

After last week’s nail polish scare, I couldn’t not post about last night’s adventure in parenting.  This time there really was blood.  (No gory pictures, I promise!)  When I arrived home after several hours in the emergency room with my three-year-old daredevil, I found my sewing machine exactly as pictured above.  Apparently, that’s exactly where I was in the process of sewing my Covert Robin project when I heard the scream.  Oddly enough, the scream came from the six-year-old not from the little guy whose head was gashed open thanks to a pretty hard smack with the wooden tree-swing in our backyard.

He was so cute in his little hospital gown in the ER . . . at least until he got tired of sitting in a tiny room waiting. The staff was amazing, though, so I really can’t complain at all!Charlie had a great nurse.  He thought it was hilarious when he asked Charlie how old he was, and Charlie responded without skipping a beat, “14.”  Really, he thought it was so funny, he brought other people to the room just to make them ask Charlie how old he was.  Then he snickered and said, “He’s a little small for his age.”

The funniest part of the whole night for me was when the doctor looked down at Charlie’s big toe as he was finishing up the stitches and asked, “Did you get blood on your toe?  Oh, no.  That’s nail polish.  Did your sister paint your toe?”  “Nope.  Me did it.”Three stitches and a good night’s sleep, and we’re all good to go.  He’s actually hanging out with me right now in our church’s coffee shop while I blog and his older brother and sister attend their homeschool co-op writing class.Here’s another little peek at that Covert Robin project.  I finished it up this morning!  I have a few more little things to add, and it will be off to it’s secret recipient next week.  Do you have any sewing plans for the weekend?

Super Style Bag Swap

One of my favorite blogs, Sew Mama Sew, is hosting the Super Style Bag Swap. I was partnered with Carla from With Needle & Thread. Carla should have received her bag yesterday. I can’t wait to hear what she thinks!

Carla’s experienced at bag swapping, and she suggested that rather than trying to figure out what fabrics to purchase for each other, we choose a selection of favorites at an online fabric store. Then we shared our favorite lists and chose from those. Now why hadn’t I thought of that before? These musical fabrics are the ones that I chose for Carla from her list of favorites. Aren’t they fun?

I made this pattern up as I went along, so a bit of ripping and re-sewing was involved until I had the bag just the way I wanted it. On the outside front there are three pockets: the two angled ones and one long one right behind those.

Carla asked for a zipper, so I put in this double-opening receased zipper. I’m not sure yet whether I like the recease or not. It makes it a little harder to access the inside than a zipper just sewn to the top. It does look really nice when it’s all zipped up, though.

Inside, there are two pockets . . .

. . . and a divider.

I also threw in a couple of things just for fun: a key chain that matches the bag, chocolate (Chocolate is a requirement for swap packages, right?) and a copy of my Emmy pattern for Carla to sew for her granddaughter.

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