Thursday, August 29, 2013

A pouch for a new mama

Last week, I posted a preview of this little beauty, and now that it has safely arrived with its new owner, I can show you the rest! Yep, it's another Open-Wide Zippered Pouch from Anna's wonderful tutorial over on Noodlehead. (You can see the other versions of this fabulous pouch that I've made here and here.)
This one was for my friend Heather, who just had her third little one a few weeks ago. She's also a sewer (check out her super cute Etsy shop, Heather Aileen, if you're in the market for anything baby related), but she's mentioned to me before that she never has time to sew for herself.
Since Harper is her third baby (and she makes a ton of cute baby items herself), I figured she had that covered, so I decided to make something for her instead!
First off, Heather is a huge Texas Rangers fan, so I decided to use the Rangers' colors, but I didn't want the bag to look all patriotic, so I stuck with the blue on the outside and hid the red on the inside (Ann Kelle Remix Ovals in Navy and Michael Miller Ta Dot in Minnie, which I've been hoarding ever since this).
For the contrasting exterior panel, I chose a text print (Architextures Text in Charcoal) because Heather used to be an English teacher. (We met back in our teaching days in Midlothian, Texas. Go Panthers!)
I love, love, love the way it turned out and hope she does, too. Congrats, Heather!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

WIP Wednesday #44

Hiya, Wednesday.

Completed/In progress:
This was a bit of a slow week for sewing. We hosted our big annual BBQ on Saturday afternoon, so much of the week was turned over to cleaning, cooking, and making homemade brats. But over the last two nights, I was able to finish up the top of my mini quilt for the St. Louis Modern Quilt Guild's Ohio Star Quilt Challenge, which I'm calling my Ohio Log Cabin Quilt.
Last week, I revealed the finished Ohio Star block that makes up the middle of the quilt. I finished the top by surrounding the star block with three rows of scrappy log cabin blocks in aquas, lime greens, and grays.

The star measures 16" square, and the entire quilt measures about 25" square.
I was a little iffy about it at first, but by the time it was finished, I really liked it. (And the hubs told me he agreed tonight, which really says something.)

Unfortunately, I realized I'm going to have to miss our September meeting, so I won't get to actually turn it in, but I've been planning on doing this challenge for so long that I still wanted to finish the project.
This week, I'm planning to finish the backing, which will be made up of some of my crazy piecing from the Jacquie Gering workshop, paired with some white and lots of the Kona charcoal gray I used on the front.
I love the "stained glass" pictures of the back side of the top. These were taken with the quilt top draped over the top of my son's backyard climbing "castle." Make it work, right?
And, of course, somewhere in sewing land, I'm still working on my T-shirt quilt and Kitchen Window quilt. Sigh.

On the "to do" list: 
Re-covering the downstairs chair
New pillows for the downstairs chairs
Christmas table runner
iPod workout strap
A mug rug for me
Ironing board cover
Another divided basket from the Noodlehead pattern 
Reusable snack bags
Living room quilt
Small zipper bag for me

This week, I'm linking up to WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced!

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Summer fun series: Trains!

This is the latest installment in the Summer Fun Series. Summer's almost over (although the weather this week has indicated otherwise), but we've had lots of fun I still need to share.
This week is all about trains. B loves trains (what little boy doesn't?), and we've found two great places to indulge him a bit. The first is the Museum of Transportation, which has exhibits on all kinds of transportation but definitely emphasizes trains the most.
It has several large yards full of trains of every make and model imaginable. There's even one that was made from an old school bus and one made from a Greyhound bus.
You can go into several of the older trains and see where the workers slept, ate, etc. There's even a cool engine room exposed on one train.
The interiors of other trains are decorated to reflect the time period in which they were used, including things like furniture and decorations from the 1950s.
The museum also features a building filled with vintage cars, buggies, carriages, and carts. Upstairs is an exhibit on the history of car parts (surprisingly interesting), including everything from speedometers and license plates to steering wheels.
On our second trip to the museum, we took a ride on the miniature train, which was so cute. Here's B waiting for the train to pull into the station (and doing his sign for "train").
The train passes several other outdoor exhibits, including the Greyhound bus train and an Air Force jet.
The other great train place is a local toy store called the Frisco Train Store. It's a fabulous toy store that stocks every kind of wooden train you could possibly want (not to mention a ton of other wooden toys), but the multiple train sets that are set out for play are definitely the highlight for B.
The owners are super nice and really just wanted to create a place where kids could come in and have fun, so they've set up five different train tables, which are free for play.
B tends to stick with the smaller sets like the one above, especially when it gets crowded, but the main set in the middle of the store (below) is amazing. So glad we found this place!