Wednesday, August 31, 2011

I heart...

I heart...

I heart my instagram app on my iphone which allows me to take such fun photos, my Lime Crime Retrofuturist lipstick, and new brunette hair - and I'm thinking of trying out an auburn too! (Although I am still blond at heart!)

My manicure!

I heart my current manicure! Don't they look just like fishnet hose?! And they were super easy to apply thanks to Sally Hansen!

Baby Gators!

I heart working at a museum because on days like today I get to play with baby alligators!! The one on the right is a year old and the one on the left is 1 week old! So cute!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Inspiring Monday

This week I am totally into red crosses whether they are quilts, mini quilts, or embroideries.

peace and comfort

Mini Red Cross Quilt- Complete!

Red Cross

I love that such a simple shape can create such a powerful statement.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

A Regency Mini

I FINALLY finished my Jane Austen mini quilt for an amazingly patient Suzanne. When she first suggested a private swap I was totally excited as I was already lucky enough to have her as a partner in a previous flickr swap when I got this little beauty.

rainy daze

But when she suggested a Jane Austen swap AND introduced me to the world of Pintrest I was ecstatic.  She made me the little beauty I shared with y'all on this weeks Inspiring Monday post and I made her this little regency mini.

I took the real silhouette of Jane Austen, inversed the color, and after downloading Jane Austen's actual handwriting digitized from her letters, put the first paragraph of Pride and Prejudice within the silhouette.

"It is a truth universally acknowledged, hat a single man in possession of a large fortune, must be in a want of a wife.  However little known the feelings or views of such a man may be on his first entering the neighbourhood, this truth is so well fixed in the minds of the surrounding families, that he is considered the rightful property of someone or other of their daughters."
- Jane Austen

Suzanne teaches English and is going to be using the book Pride and Prejudice in her classroom so I chose this passage.  Plus it is one of my favorite passages from the entire book due to the duality it reveals about the society at the time.  Men ran the world, women the house, and marriage was everything.  Yet, as seen here, women could also control men in times of courtship - at least in the minds of themselves and their mothers. 

Then I decided on a black binding to act like a frame, and a large satin ribbon to hang it instead of a back hanging piece.

I embroidered a scallop edge to mimic lace, and the bow was a sublime stitching pattern.  For the scallop's I made them by using notebook paper hole reinforcement stickers. I stuck the stickers to the quilt and then just embroidered around it. I thought it was one of my more resourceful moments!

For the quilting I knew it needed a lot of dense quilting but due to the oval shape would need different quilting styles on the different sections, thus the crosshatching and the straight lines on the outside border.

And I am so glad I rebinded this little baby. It still curves ever so slightly but I LOVE the effect of the pin dot. The idea was to mimic a frame while executing a traditional idea (the silhouette) with a modern flare (the colors and polka dots). I hope this makes a wonderful addition to Suzanne's mini quilt collection!

Told you guys I was a Jane Austen nerd.

Also, keep your eyes open for a giveaway to celebrate the blogs 1 year anniversary!
*hint hint wink wink*

Monday, August 22, 2011

Inspiring Monday

Inspiration can come from anywhere, from fellow crafters, your surroundings, your imagination, and even others imagination. 

Or your favorite author. 

I don't think it is a secret anymore that I am a total Jane Austen NERD.  I have read every book she wrote MULTIPLE times (plus a ton of the insane number of rewrites and sequels), have a Jane Austen action figure, visited the Jane Austen Centre in Bath, England, and am even a member of the Jane Austen Society of North America and am going to the annual general meeting this fall in Fort Worth, TX. 

So yeah.....NERD.

And from this love others have used this obsession love for interest in Jane Austen to create some beautiful pieces for me that I will love always.

Beth made this for me for my birthday back in June.  What Would Jane Austen Do?


And Suzanne made me this for our Jane Austen swap and I got it over the weekend!

Jane Austen mini

Seriously, I cannot even express what these pieces mean to me and how much I will treasure them.

The lesson here though is to keep your eyes open, because inspiration is ANYWHERE and EVERYWHERE. You just have to notice it.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Too much of a good thing??

Woah. Today has been awesome.

I took Betty on a bike ride today. Went 8.25 miles which was great, but going from 11:30 to 12:30 pm when it was over 100 degrees outside wasn't exactly my brightest idea ever.

Yesterday I finished my Jane Austen mini quilt for Suzanne, but after binding it I realized I must have bound it too tightly because the edges were curling up. Since I wasn't happy with how the binding print ended up looking anyways I decided to redo, so I went to our new Joann's in search of the perfect black pin dot and found it. Monday this little baby should be ready to mail out!

For Suzanne

Then this evening I decided to make some homemade white bread from the Curvy Carrot which I found via Eleganitis who had the best photos of what the bread should look like when you hand knead it. I decided to do it by hand after realizing the recipe made way more dough than my artisan could handle at once (and it doesn't help that I forgot about the lock for the head...)

Once it was all kneaded I had to wait for what seemed like forever for it to rise.

Mmm mmm good

But patience proved to be worth it once these beauties came out of the oven.

Mmm mmm good

Once it cooled just a smidge it didn't take long to slice and devour it!

Mmm mmm good

And holy cow was it good!!!

Mmm mmm good

Especially as a muenster cheese grilled cheese sandwich with tomato basil soup! And tomorrow I am thinking french toast is a MUST.

Mmm mmm good

And I have realized you can never have too much of a good thing - that is until you eat so much you feel sick! LOL!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Inspiring Monday

So I totally need another craft addiction like I need a hole in the head, or as my awesome crafty friend Beth said I am taking a crafting detour but will eventually find my way back to the quiling path! 

So for this detour I am totally exploring CROSS STITCH!  Because seriously how could you not want to make pieces like these...

Entomologie Set

Check out her shop with so many great patterns!

Or better yet these AMAZING pieces by Cauchy that are on her blog. WARNING...NSFW!! (But doesn't that make you want to click the link all the more?!?)  I mean seriously, I have never been so sad that I don't read my blog reader everyday so that I could have been one of the lucky few to get the patterns for those samplers!!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

And the Winner is...


I will be contacting you by email and send you your prize this week!