Thursday, July 28, 2011

Quilt Progress

You may remember from this post, I am trying to win this contest.

I have been stitching like a mad woman trying to get all the applique done.
For those of you who didn't want to link over, here is the deal.
My quilt started out having 588 circles; all hand appliqued, because if you are going to do it, do it right.

The idea of getting it all done in time became too over whelming, so I decided to take off the last row and make it square. In doing so it saved my fingers from having to sew on 108 circles.
Also all I am ever going to do with this quilt is to have it at the foot of my bed, so I also figured it would fit my bed better if it was only four rows.

I made fat quarters of the red fabric and then traced the wedge pattern and circles on the fabric.
I found this square frame at Joann's and it help immensely.

I would stitch them all on and felt like I was making progress every time I moved the frame along.

We went to a family dinner and my sister in law said.
"Robyn aren't you tired of those circles yet, because I am tired of looking at you with those circles"
Thankfully they are all done and I am moving on to the next step.

Here is photographic proof of the last stitch, on the last circle.

It is not really the last circle just the last colored circles. I still have 46 red circles to make.

I had said before that we realised that letting them air dry helped them keep their shape better. I am no longer on the lake with 100 degree weather and the wind blowing. So after pulling out the cinnamon rolls one morning I had an idea.

Why not put them in the hot oven to dry, so that is what we did.

Step one get the girls to paint on the homemade starch.

Place them in the oven, and wait about 8 min.

Let them cool, pop out the template.

A perfectly round little circle, and no need to iron.

I did iron the back to hold down the ruffles, but I think I am sold on this crazy way to make them.
when I did iron them they did not dry all the way, and they would get a little wonky,
 and no one wants a wonky circle.

The next step, is the petals and they are so sticking cute.
I almost didn't do them, I was thinking of having my quilter just do something fancy instead.

I was worried about my deadline and thought it might be OK with out them.

I am glad I stuck with the original plan.

I am loving them way too much.

We are heading back down to the lake, so I am going to be finishing it there.

The motors are going to be down for the first two days, so while we are hooked up to shore power I will be sewing. Good Looking told me once that sewing machines are not allowed on the lake. He changed his mind and said I could do what ever I wanted. He also said that I had better win the contest. I will be adding scissors, iron, thread, and sewing machine to the packing list.

Just to make you jealous one more time, here is an awesome picture of where I will be for the next week.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

The Blessing Dress

I was asked to make a blessing dress for a friend of a friend.

She is a mother of boys and has always dreamed of having girls. She told me that she has been dreaming of what her sweet baby would wear on her blessing day, since she was in high school.

She wanted an heirloom dress and she wanted it to be silk.

As I am typing this I realise that I haven't told you, first and for most I am an heirloom seamstress.
I may quilt and sew pretty dresses but if I were to say I excel at anything it would be heirloom sewing. I love creating things that will last for generations. I love leaving my heart and love in a garment. I think you can't do that with simple sewing, to put your "love into it" you have to heirloom it up. I love smocking and hem tucks. I love finding the perfect lace, entreduex is my friend and I love everything about it.

Anyway back to the dress... she came over and we looked through the samples that I had sewn before and she loved Baby Sister's dress, and she wanted to have some color. I smocked columns of lattice stitches and then embroidered the vines and flowers in the softest shade of pink and green.

I like to have a really long dress, what is the point in making a short blessing dress.
This one is actually shorter than what I usually do

Here is the front

close up of the details

If I were to make it again, I would do the sleeves different.
After seeing it all done, I wish I would have embroidered the flowers in the center of the sleeve, and have pin tucks on either side, with a tiny cuff.

The dress was too big for the day, she wanted to wait to take pictures, until she was a little bigger.
I added the ties to sinch it in, and it looks super cute.

She wanted hem tucks, I like to do them in threes as a symbol of the God head.

She wanted to have a bonnet and not a bow. I wanted it to look modern and not too foofy.
I love how it turned out, and I love how I attached the ribbon.

I hope you liked it....

Friday, July 22, 2011


If you are here visiting from
Funky Polk-a-Dot Giraffe welcome I am honored to have you here.

Take a look around, I hope you like what I have done with the place.
Feel free to come back and visit sometime.
Ignore those tabs at the top for now, I still haven't figured out how to get things in there.
When I do it will be fun I promise.

Since a blog with no pictures is boring,
I will show you a preview of something I was working on but haven't had time to post.
You know like a tease.

If you are always here, and you haven't figured it out yet. I am guest posting on
Funky Polk-a-dot Giraffe today.

Feel free to go visit her here. Kyla is a lot of fun and makes the very best hair bows.


Saturday, July 16, 2011

Aubrey's Pageant

This weekend was our first Pageant.
I think it would be fun to do it again next year, but Good Looking thinks once is enough.
Like I said earlier, I made Baubi's dress.
I was hoping not to, because I am crazy trying to get this quilt done.

This is what we learned when we went shopping,
She doesn't fit anything.
She is to short for ladies size 0, and too small around for girls size 14.
I tell her all the time to get enough sleep and eat her proteins,
now we have the proof that I know of what I speak.

This is the first time we have ever done anything like this, we are lazy parents so we don't have our girls in dance and gymnastics, we tried soccer once, and that has been about it for extra curricular activities at our house. This was her first time on stage, and her first time talking to an audience of strangers. Considering all that I think she did fantastic.

Her are the shots of her dress, and her competition.

Good looking got to be her escort for the formal wear, he did a good job and twirled her around when they were walking off stage, it was very cute. The girl in the back ground was one of the finalist.

Here they are on stage.

If her grandpa were writing this post he would say this...
"If that is not perfection I don't know what is"
He has said that about her her whole life, he is a really good Grandpa.
Love you Dad.

I have created some pretty fabulous things in my life, but I think she ranks pretty high on that list.

Here are the stair step sisters. I told Good Looking that we could have them all in it next year, but I don't think he is going to go for it.

How could I not do the bridal mirror shot.

Here you can see the back of her dress. I did bridal loops up the back and hid the plain buttons behind and showed off some fancy ones on the top. I hate zippers but that is a tale for another day.

This is the low down on what she won, a state finalist trophy (everyone got one) and a medal for being a runner up in casual wear. I was the really great mom who remembered half way there that I forgot my camera for that competition so I don't have a picture of her in her casual wear outfit.

If you look close you can see that her eyes are very red :(
She was hoping to do so much better than she did.
So I would like to publicly say
I think you did a great job, I so proud of you for trying. Next year the world.

Monday, July 11, 2011

The great flood of 2011

Did it rain yesterday where you are?
We had a down pour and here is the sad sad tale.

I woke up, prepared the Sunday school lesson, prepared children for church and headed out.
Survived church, which is a feat in it's self because Good Looking is doing a job in Alaska. So I got to sit through sacrament meeting and teaching our seven year old boys by myself.

After church I did the unthinkable...I went to the Joann's. I am making Baubi's pageant dress and because she is so tiny, I could not just go to the store and buy one. (trust me I tried) Anyway I am making Baubi's pageant dress and ran out of thread. All I wanted to do yesterday was go get my thread and sew her dress and make taco salad for dinner. I really don't think I was asking too much, but I guess higher powers wanted to punish me for breaking the Sabbath and going shopping.

On the way home it started raining. I like summer rain. I think it is fun to survive a hot day, see the clouds build, and then feel like the day has been refreshed after the rain has stopped and the skies have cleared.
The rain kept building and building, I commented to Baubi "I think this is what they call a torrential down pour" (little did I know). We went a bit further, and that is when we experienced a true a torrential down pour. We couldn't see very far and the rain drops were about the size of quarters, then the hail started. It was so loud in the car we could barely hear ourselves. It slowed down the closer we got to our house.

As we turned into out neighborhood, I noticed that our good friends had friends over. The closer I got I noticed that their friend had a shop vac in hand. That is when it hit me, their house is getting flooded. Sure enough three window wells in their basement were filling up fast and they needed help. We pulled in the garage and I sent the girls over with our shop vac to see if they needed it. I could hear my back yard neighbors yelling at each other, the husband was on the roof trying to clear out the gutters and the wife was reporting on the state of their window well. 

All the while I was calm, we have had at least four floods in past and I really thought all the problems were solved and I had nothing to worry about....oh was I wrong.

I had just posted on my facebook that I was so glad that my husband had fixed the gutters so I didn't have to worry.Then I thought maybe I should double check that one. Sure enough I went downstairs and the carpet was wet. This is at least the fifth time the basement has flooded and Good Looking has only ever been here for two of them. I went running back to our friends house to get back our shop vac. I tried to move the couches out of the way and tried to get the water out. It did not take long for word to spread that I needed help. The men in the neighborhood were over in no time, trying to get out what they could, but it was so much worse than we thought.  

In the end I have no carpet pad in my family room. The play room/office has only about half of it's carpet pad left. Two sections of my couch are in the garage the corner section is in Baubi and Gowyn's room, along with the extra family room furniture. I have a bookcase in the laundry room and the entertainment center is in pieces off the carpet in the family room.

Here is the photographic evidence.

See that white line on the glass, that is how high the water got before it decided to see what my house was like. No the gutter pipe in the window well is not connected to anything, my husband likes to store stuff like that under our deck.

See that dark line in the carpet pad. that is how far the water got. Just so you know that wall is usually covered up by the entertainment center.

My father in law came over with a fan to try to blow it dry, it is not working the carpet is still soaking wet.

This is the whole room view. To the right sits a very large, very heavy sectional couch with a hide away bed and two recliners. To the left sits our entertainment center, it is big and has three sections. There is also a small bookcase next to the entertainment center.

This is the opposite view, this is the office/playroom the desk is usually looking at you, and a book case is in the spot where the desk is.

Now that book case is in the laundry room, blocking it.

Here is the inside of the laundry room, yep no laundry is getting done today. 

This is Baubi and Gowyn's room, all of that furniture is not suppose to be there. 

I really wish I could say that this part of their room looks like this because our basement flooded and we had to get things off the floor, and their room got it all. Nope it always looks like this.

This is our garage today, the kids love it. They think it is great to have such a cosy place to relax during the day. That white piece of furniture was a vanity of my great grandmother's it was in the office waiting to be refinished. It got so wet that the drawers are swollen shut. I hope that the heat of the garage can fix that problem.

This is the pony wall in the entry way, it suffered some damage trying to get the couches out.

This is what we figured happened. My husband buried the gutter pipe under the ground, with a pop up so that we wouldn't have to worry about it getting knocked off and flooding again. The unforeseen problem with this fix is where does the debris go. I will tell you... it gets stuck in the pop up and then the water doesn't have anywhere else to go but up and over the gutter, then onto the deck, and then through the cracks in the deck, and then finally into the window well and onto the floor.

I am sure it could have been worse, no one was hurt, there was no structural damage. The thing that is bothering me today, is that the carpet is still soaking wet, my house is in great disarray, I am suppose to be sewing a pageant dress, but my sewing room is also full of stuff and it is getting stinky down there, there are no screens on the basement windows so I can not open them up and let the stink out. The number one thing that is bother me, is the number one thing that I can not change, my husband is not here. He is not here to get the screens on the windows (I don't even know where they are, and if they are even OK to go on the windows) This whole fan business is just the thing that he would do, so I wouldn't have to. He would have everything organised and not crazy piled all over the house.

I am sure there are some of you saying "do it yourself woman" but here is the thing...... I don't want to. I want to be sewing a pageant dress, and finishing my quilt. I do not want to worry about calling the neighbor to find out who had the extruder, so that I can get the water out of the carpet. I don't want to worry about where we are going to put all the stuff until the carpet is dry and new pad is laid down. I do not want to worry about the proper placement of the fan to get the best air flow. I only want to worry about what to make for dinner, and how I am going to thank everyone who helped me out yesterday. 

I began this long tale of woe by saying that I like the summer rain, and here is the fun part of the rain from yesterday. Our sad little dessert town now has a lake or a pond. 

This is our local park it is also the retaining pond for situations just like yesterday. It was fun to see everyone gather to see how full it is (It's ten feet deep in case you were wondering) My friend even had her boys out there on the kayak, because what else are you suppose to do with that much water?

OK I am going to look for the silver lining, and never go to Joann's on a Sunday again.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Vacation Number One

We are already down one vacation, and one more to go. They are both in the same place, our favorite place, the place that our children are always asking to go, and that place would be...

We have our houseboat in bullfrog, so if you are ever heading to Lake Powell and are on your way, look for this...

the actual bullfrog that the canyon is named after. See there in the mountain side, you can see it jumping.

We stayed in Iceberg canyon, and the man in the moon kept watch over us. Can you see his eyes and nose?
There are so many fun things to see and find, but the best has to be what you see at 6:30 in the morning.

The water is so still it is like a mirror, I love it.

This one actually fooled people when I asked which is the reflection, just so you know it is the bottom one.

Baubi went water skiing, look at her skinny legs.

Then she went wake boarding.

Gowyn loves the knee board and could be pulled behind the boat for hours on end. We tried to get her up on the wake board but as soon as she head planted on the water she was done.

Another "fun" activity is the tube as you can see by Baubi's face the term fun is used loosely.

The girls loved having a party on the boat. It has a stereo so they would sit on the boat and listen to music and get their party on.

This is what I did for the trip. I sewed all the circles for my quilt. I followed this tutorial. I did not want to pay $15 dollars for the one size circle I needed, so I got template plastic that is heat resistant and Martha Stewart's circle cutter and cut out 45 circles. I would sew them up in sets. See I knew that assembly line experience would come in handy.

I had it down to a system, templates circles, thread and a baggie to hold the done ones.

I had the girls paint on the starch, and then I would iron them with my tiny iron. I had my sister in law help, until she burned her finger. It was after that, that we realised the circles hold their shape better if you let them air dry. It is surprisingly easy when it is over 100 degrees and the wind is blowing.

This is the final count after a week. They are all in nice stacks of ten, and in rows of ten, so the total for the week was 481. I finished the rest on the way home. I am now in the process of sewing the circles onto the fabric. I have 168 done 420 to go.

For those of you who don't know what quilt I am speaking of I mentioned it here. I am entering this quilt in the Riley Blake quilt contest. I am needing it to be done by August 17. So wish me luck, if you want to know more about the contest check it out here.