Friday, January 1, 2016

Happy 2016!

I hope this finds you all happy, healthy and excited to start the New Year.
I was thinking what my 'word of the year' was going to be and the one word that kept coming to my mind was CALM.  Life is so stressful and I'm always looking for ways to live a more calmer life.  CALM it is.

I've missed my blog, and you.  I feel my life settling down a bit,
which is a great thing.  My new normal has developed a much needed routine
that frees up a few moments here and there for a little selfish alone time.
That means I can start my blog back up again.  I love Instagram, but that's what it is...instant.
A quick photo to share what's up, but not truly documenting your passion, or obsession (however you choose to look at it).  I am NOT a Facebook person.  Tried it and truly do not like it.  You will 
find me either here, Flickr or on Instagram.  It's that simple....and calmer.

So here's my year in review.

My hubby and I celebrated out 30th wedding anniversary.

2015 brought yet another damaging storm.  Everything is now repaired, but I'm praying 
we never have another one!  Two years in a row is plenty, thank you.

We are now empty nesters.  It was decided to redo our living and dining rooms and I couldn't 
be happier with the results.  We even purchased new furniture.  Trust me, all this was a big deal to us because we don't normally do things like this.

Of course one thing leads to another, so I redid an old buffet that we got years ago.

Which also lead to redoing an old church pew so I could display all the beautiful pillows I've received from friends.  Let's be real....it's the pillows that make this photo perfect.  So  much love on that church pew....from prayers of past church members to all the quilty love.  It's truly a blessed spot!

I'm very proud to say that my hubby and I did all the work on the remodel ourselves, with the help of my precious family members and great friends.  We are blessed!

We decided our sweet dog, Sadie, needed a friend as we were all missing Stubby so much.
Stubby took his first breath in our living room, which is where he took his last 15 years later.
We were so blessed to have his help raising our boys.  With that said, we knew our next dog
needed to be just as special, so we adopted a Jack Russell.  Let me introduce you to Sam (Samantha if she's in trouble).
She keeps Sadie very active.  Who am I kidding?  She keeps us all active!  She LOVES people
and will try and go home with anyone that stops by.  The Culligan man, Schwan man, UPS, Fed Ex,
friends, family....you name it.  She drives most people crazy with her love,
but to us, she's the perfect fit.

My sister and I went to Virginia Beach in the fall to help celebrate our friend, Karen's 40th birthday (quiltingfairy if you follow her on Flickr or Instagram).
In the front row you have Mary (Fairlymerry), Mel (crandons), Karen (the birthday girl!), Jackie (chloeandme), Marci (marciwarrenelmer).  Middle row is Mia (mlrdesigns), Chen (mushyhead), Kat (katmama), Katy (lethargiclass).  Back row is me, Sarah (arbonnegirl), Amy (amysewvt) and Greta (gretters). 

Such a great trip, and though I've met some of the gals from our Ohio trip in 2014, it was great to meet even more of our IG/Flickr friends in real life.  True, lifelong friendships have been formed.
The creative talent among this group is amazing.  It is truly a blessing to call these ladies my friend.

This year was also my aunt and uncles 60th wedding anniversary.  Our cousin asked my sister and I 
to help with the planning and decorating.  It was SO much fun!  My hubby set up a painting station in the barn to paint a million and one (or so it seemed) branches for the center pieces.  Steph (my cousin) and I were 'happy' campers by the time we were done with all that spray paint.  LOL

And my house looked like a winter wonderland that weekend we put all the center pieces together!

Now I have to share a proud mom moment.  My youngest son was picked to compete in an electrical apprentice competition at a state level.  Meet Iowa's #1 4 year electrical apprentice!

I could not be more proud of him!  Since he won at a state level, he'll move on to Nationals in Florida later this year.  I wish him all the best and thank his sweetie, Amanda (isn't she beautiful?), for putting together is great photo collage of the competition.

So that's a recap of 2015 in a nutshell.  I am really looking forward to 2016.
I will be blogging for sure every other week.  Anything extra will be a bonus, but I wasn't going to start my blog up again unless I knew I had the time to commit to it.  I look forward to sharing all my creativity and hope to be a tiny bit of inspiration in your world.  I know I always love reading, and looking at what others are doing to help keep my own creative juices flowing.

I wish you all great blessings for 2016.  Remember, it's not about having the biggest and the best.
It's about living a good life, so in the end, you can look back and know you've done everything you can to leave this world a better place.  

God bless!
XOXO
Cindy

Monday, April 6, 2015

April Lovely Year of Finishes

So I missed the sign ups for the March Lovely Year of finishes.
I had to make sure not to miss April!

One of my sewing goals for 2015 was to better myself in free motion quilting.
With that said, this month I am going to quilt this beauty and not use straight line quilting.
(straight line quilting is my 'go to')



This quilt was put together last spring and has been sitting in my UFO pile.
(along with a few other quilt tops)

It was put together using the Jelly Roll Race by Missouri Star Quilt Company.
You can find it HERE

You can put together this top in about 45 minutes,
so if you need something fast, this is for you!  Not only is it fun to put together,
but you don't know how it's going to turn out until you're done.
So if you're a planner, and want to be a rebel & throw caution to the wind,
grab your jelly roll and get started!

On another note, have you seen Lori Holt's new book, Farm Girl Vintage?


Lori is from Bee in my Bonnet and I have been a huge fan of hers for some time now.

I preordered my book, so when it came, I also received this free pattern, Canning Season.
For a country girl like myself, this is all right up my alley!

Here's a little close up of each block in the book.  I can't wait to get started!
Lori will also be doing a sew along as well.  Make sure to check out the details on her blog


This past Christmas I had made little zipper pouches for my brother and two nieces.
Well, I left my sister-in-law out of the mix.  It was one of those last minute 'quick' gifts, because I had to have something to put the gift cards in.  I didn't have a gift card for her, and I was only focused
on what I needed to do right at that moment.  
You know how it goes.

So I thought for Easter, I would find out what her favorite treat is and make her a drawstring pouch using this lovely material from my stash.


Using Kate Spain's Cuzco added with a beautiful aqua color from Bonnie & Camille (and I'm sorry I don't know which line!) you can't go wrong!


I used the 'cute as a button' twill for the drawstring, which I purchased from The Little Red Cottage
on Etsy.  You can find that HERE.

So....on to my 'out of comfort zone' quilting!
I wish you all a creative and sunny day!
xoxo
Cindy

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

February Finish for A Lovely Year of Finishes

I am finished.



My February finish for the group A Lovely Year of Finishes on Flickr.
I actually had all the pieces cut out quite a while ago as I mentioned in my earlier post.
I tried to make it for a couple different swaps, but the fabric choices weren't my partners 'thing',
which is absolutely fine.  This worked out great for me, because I dearly love it!


My scrap baskets in the background were gifted to me by Jackie (aka chloeandme on Flickr and IG) 
I've been such a fan of her work for quite some time now.  Not only is her work beautiful, so is her soul.  

Speaking of gifts, I received a very generous one from the lovely
I can't honestly remember who started following who first, 
but I do know Melissa was the very first blogger I became
'friends' with.  We've never met in real life,
but I feel as though we have.
She has been such an inspiration to me and has helped me grow
tremendously in the sewing world.  Because of Melissa,
I can now sew a little more freely, without solely relying on a pattern.
I can seriously go on and on about Melissa, but all you have to do
is check her blog out HERE and you'll see exactly what I'm talking about.

In the meantime, you can enjoy my gift with me.
Look at all this loveliness of Tanya Whelan's Lulu Roses!


That with the buttons and hexies make for a great beginning of something beautiful, don't you think?

Another item I worked on was a small pillow using Heather Ross fabric and linen.


I love doing free motion thread art.

I also made an Open Wide pouch by Noodlehead using fabric by Anna Maria Horner and quilters linen.



I used a decorative stitch on the front of the pouch for a little extra 'love'.



And last, but not least, this little Penny Pincher Coin Purse found in the freebie section of Melissa's blog.


As you can see, I really am a little crazy over that thread art.  :)

I hope you have had lots of fun creativity taking place in your life!
Here's to next time!
xoxo
Cindy

Saturday, February 7, 2015

2015 Lovely Year of Finishes

I'm baaaaaack!!

And I'm ready to get my 'sew on' for 2015!

This past year has been totally insane, 
but I'm finding my groove in my 
"new normal".

To start off, I'm linking up with 
A Lovely Year of Finishes.
You can find information on how to join
at either Sew Bitter Sweet Designs or

My project to finish in February
is in this little basket


It's been in storage for a little over a year.
(and by 'storage', I mean in a big ol pile of UFO's)
I thought this would be a good project to start my 2015 finishes.



It's a great basket and I can't believe I haven't finished it.
What the?? 
:)

I even have the majority of the pattern cut out!



Just so you know I haven't been a total slacker.
Here are a couple things I've recently made.

and a free pattern for an embroidery hoop wall pocket




This is THE best grocery bag EVER!
I'm actually giving this bag away on Instagram.
You can find me there under cindys0707.
The giveaway is open until February 8th, 8:00 PM CST.
Are you still reading this blog post?
STOP!  
Go enter the giveaway!

I'll stop for now.  
I'm still in 'shock and awe'
returning to the blog world.
I may need a glass of wine to get over it.

Y'all come back know,
ya hear!

xoxo
Cindy

Friday, July 25, 2014

Aeroplane Bag

Hey World!
I hope this post finds you all healthy and happy.
I have been sewing up a storm these past couple months.
Now that my big swap projects are complete,
I will have more time to devote to this little blog of mine.

I WAY over committed in the world of swaps.
(please don't take that the wrong way...
....it's all legit and very legal)
LOL

I am very proud to say that all projects were completed
and shipped on time.  My track record has not been broken.

I'll fill you in on the other items I've made 
(and I cannot WAIT to show you what I've received),
but today I'll start with the Aeroplane bag I made for my partner 
in the Sew Sew Modern 5 group.  The pattern is by Sara Lawson.
It's a great pattern, but I still can't say that I love zippers.


I also made a matching drawstring pouch.  You can find the tutorial for this 

For the pouch I fussy cut 40 2-1/2" squares.
I also fussy cut 2-1/2" squares for the bag, but lost count!
If you do make the bag, and want to use the fussy cut squares,
keep in mind you'll loose some at the top of the bag due to cutting the pattern template.
so put your 'boring' ones on the top sides.

Also keep in mind where your straps will end up.
I had put of out of print Heather Ross fabric in this bag.
Well, the poor little thing can't even be seen because of the strap.


So, if using 2-1/2" squares, again, keep your more 'boring' fabrics 4 squares in from the sides and 4 squares up from the bottom where your straps will go.  I would suggest using your pops of color here and not a fussy cut.

There are two sizes the bag can be made in.
This suggestions I'm giving are for the large size.

I should have made a test bag first, but as I mentioned above,
I over committed on swaps, so time was not my friend.

The large zipper did give me some grief.  Just go slow and watch your top stitching
so the fabric doesn't interfere with the zipper pull.

Other than that, this is really a great pattern.  I was joking on IG that I 
probably won't be making another one.
But I have some cute nieces that I think will enjoy these bags for Christmas.
More to come on that story!



The cute twill placed on the linen can be found 
I heard about it from my friend Amy over at 

How about a look at the lining
(kind of sounds like...."Hey...check out my panties" when I say that)


Both sides of the lining have the zipper pockets.

Here's a closer look at both sides of the drawstring pouch


Looking forward to sharing more with you in the next few days!

Remember.....
today is a good day for a good day.
:)


XOXO 
to all!!
Cindy

Monday, May 12, 2014

S.W.A.K.

Hey there!

In case you haven't realized by now,
I'm addicted to swaps.

Majorly addicted.

I'm really not ready to admit it yet,
but superficially, 
I'm stating this fact.
:)

There's just something to say about happy mail.
It makes me jump up and down when I get happy mail
(please don't try and visualize me jumping up and down)

I'm currently in three swaps, 
but the one I'm sharing today is a year long one,
which involves sending out these cute little paper pieced envelopes
to whomever's month it is.

The blocks are from the book Patchwork Please
by Ayumi Takahashi.
WARNING
If you try this at home,
they are addicting
and I will not be held responsible
for whatever happens.
(just had to put that out there)

I'm sharing some photos of the blocks I've made so far this year
(minus a couple because I've run out of time trying to find them on my camera).

Each block is made according the likes of the person receiving.
Some of the photos are a bit poor in quality,
so I do apologize!  Apparently I didn't double check myself,
and they have long since been shipped to their new owners.







With each block we are to also send a little 'postage stamp'.
You can find the instructions from Nana Company 





And I had to save the best for last.
If I were to make a block for myself,
this would be it.


All blocks were sewn with Aurifil thread.
This is the only thread I use.
Yes, I have become a thread snob.

I hope you all have a fantastic day!
Happy Monday!

xoxo
Cindy



Monday, May 5, 2014

A Cindy Original

Hello!

A friend of mine asked me if 
I would make a bag for her niece,
who will be having a new little one soon.

Absolutely!


As my blogger friend, Melissa, tells me,
"Let the fabric speak to you".
So I looked in my stash and found this little cutie.

As I was 'listening',
the bunting and the hedge hogs were just begging to be brought into the bag.



I fussy cut the hedge hogs and had just enough of this twill left
to create this little addition on to the bag.
The twill came from The Little Red Cottage.
I had to order more since that was my last little bit.
Now isn't that a shame?
:)

I also brought in some extra detail.
I thread painted the flower and actually painted the stem and leaves.


And what is a bag without some pockets and a place to put your keys?
(I think my sister needs this...she is CONSTANTLY misplacing her keys!)


Finally, I made my own little label to mark the bag with.


From what I hear the bag was a success, which makes me incredibly happy.
What projects have you been working on?

xoxo
Cindy