Saturday, November 28, 2009

Giveaway Day

Over the years that I've been entering contests via this lovely internet community, I've been lucky enough to win a few great prizes. . fabric, a calendar, cute clothes for my girls, a beautiful quilted journal cover, handmade cards, a fabric storage box, and of course, an autographed copy of Alicia Paulson's Stitched in Time - the list goes on . . .

I enter a giveaway almost every day . . I think they're such a great way to give back to the blogging community that gives so much in terms of inspiration.

Which is why I'm taking part in Sew Mama Sew's Giveaway Day on December 2.

I have this book on my wish list this year . . I borrowed it from the library a few weeks ago and fell in love! I didn't have a chance to try out any of the projects but I think it belongs on every quilter's bookshelf.

If you win this giveaway, I will order it directly from a bookstore and have it delivered to you. I will also mail a little package of handmade fun. This will include an ornament for sure, but the rest depends on where the winner is from since postage rates can vary and it would be nice if the package could arrive before Christmas.

All you have to do to enter is leave a comment on this post telling me what your favourite Christmas cookie is . . and a link to a recipe gives you two entries. I need to get started on holiday baking!

Want a third entry? Become a follower of our blog and leave a comment telling me you've done so. (If you're already a follower you get a bonus entry but be sure and let me know.)

The deadline to enter is December 6th. Please include your email with your entry so I can contact you if you win!

Good luck!

- Donna

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Crazy Carnival

Oh boy! It feels really great to have this one finished and not a moment too soon as it is being gifted today. I struggled on many levels with this quilt and resorted to asking both you and the recipient for guidance to get me out of the ruts. I really hope it's what she wants now that it's together!

Things I am not so proud of about this quilt include the inordinate amount of time it took to decide on the pattern (had the whole thing laid out in the first of these patterns, but could not wrap my head around squaring up the edges), the time it took me to get the right amount of blocks (had some going in the opposite direction and after fixing those, ended up with some STILL going in the wrong direction...oh, and of course cut one too small when trimming).

What I am proud of is that my points line up somewhat well. It really is impressive when you're careful to keep everything the same size and to press the seams in the right direction. It ends up fitting together just like a puzzle. Also, there was somewhat of a crisis during quilting, but I persevered and after the washing and drying magic of a stippled quilt, the crisis is barely even visible. Phewf!
There were a few firsts with this quilt. It's my first pinwheel which I enjoyed. It's the first time I've quilted with bamboo batting which is so soft and gives a really nice drape to the finished quilt. Lastly, it was the first time I've used flannel for the back. I will definitely do another flannel back again, but I have had some trouble with colored flannel running before, so it may be wise to pre-wash if white isn't what you're using.


Friday, November 20, 2009

Calling all Flea Market Fancy Freaks

I want so badly to tell you about the craft show . . but daughter's child care giver is sick with the flu so I'm with the baby ...

In the meantime . . .click on over here and enter. What an AMAZING giveaway!!!

- Donna

Friday, November 13, 2009

Sneak Peek

No time to fiddle with getting pictures to look nicer but here are a few sneak peeks. . .
Shirts are all sewn . . .I love this one (I think because it has two scraps of Flea Market Fancy!)

Ambrosia Macaroons are setting.
And doodads (magnets, pushpins and hair clips) are done and packaged.

It's the last day before the sale! I'm working on packaging today and designing my table layout. And making soup for the crafters' lunch (roasted apple and carrot with ginger and a butternut squash with chipotle peppers, pancetta and sweet corn. Sprinkled with some goat cheese it's pretty much heaven in a bowl). It's going to be a good day tomorrow!

I can't wait to fill you all in on how it went.

- Donna

PS -thanks for all the birthday wishes. I had a super nice day with a fantastic lunch out here with Holly, an amazing birthday cake baked by my husband. He then helped me make candy for three hours. Love that guy!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Down but I'm not Out

I think I had it. I'm pretty sure three of my four family members have succumbed.

The swine flu has infiltrated our house, darn it all. And the week before Craftalicious.

I'm stumbling along, feeling better, as are my girls. . .we've all been vaccinated so it wasn't terribly severe, but, but. . . I'm so behind!!

My week of time off to prepare for the sale has been pared down to three measly days. I also have a facial booked in there (hey, it's my birthday gift to myself every year!), a lunch date on my bday, some time for putting up posters (way too late but haven't been able to leave the house in days), and I'm making soup for all the crafters at our sale so they don't have to bring lunch. ACK!

Top this all off with the fact that my first batch of never fail chocolate almond butter crunch (aka almond roca) DIDN'T turn out. It's hanging out in the porch right now, in hopes that it sets up. I have my doubts. This has never happened before. EVER.

Deep breaths.

I did finish piecing all the parts for my 60ish shirts today. (Yay!). They're ironed on, and ready to be sewn (most are in fact already sewn, and were done before the week started). I got my small order of toddler tees in just in time, late last week. The owner of the wholesaler called me a few weeks ago to let me know that they were held up at the border, but that he had high hopes they'd get in just in time for the sale. Yay ZeeSpot!

My pushpins are done and packaged.

I have forty Christmas ornaments made.

I've done a few hairclips up, and my magnets are half assembled.

I picked up my awesome labels today (I'll do a show and tell at a later date. Nadia did a great job of designing them!)

Ingredients for my cookies and candies I'm planning on making are purchased, as are the ingredients for the crafters' lunch.

Sara's contributions to the sale are labeled and priced.

I've put some thought into my table layout and pulled together the necessary materials.

I can do this. I can do this.

And now, that I've bored you with all the nitty gritty what I have left to do before Saturday details, a bit of show and tell.

I loved loved loved Lina's patchwork star, and asked her permission to use her tutorial to whip some up for the sale. She kindly agreed. I labouriously cut out about 80 diamonds in various red and white fabric. (Don't worry, I used a rotary cutter and a ruler . . took me a few to figure this out though!). I stitched them together. I sewed on some beautiful fabric buttons. I sewed the first front to the back and turned it inside out and realized . . D'oh! My diamonds were far too small (not sure how I managed this, since Lina gives dimensions! .. I chalk it up to late night crafting .. which is the only time I craft so I should be used to it by now!) My stars, in the end, look different than hers, since I had to sew them together wrong sides facing, leave a gap, stuff, and finish sewing before pinking the edges. I really liked Lina's suggestion to just cut squares for the backs and then cut once. Brilliant time saver.

Ok. To the sewing machine I go.

Can't wait to write more about the sale . .have lots of thoughts about a) selling handmade goods for the first time and b) co- organzing an independent craft sale for the first time. (No, I couldn't just sell a few things to see how it goes . . I have to put on the craft show also!

- Donna