Wednesday, August 26

small projects

I just can't get enough of sewing lately. And I seriously want a serger. I was telling Gregg about my want (not need, mind you) and he said well why don't you just sell your sewing machine now and buy one off craigslist. Poor Gregg, he has no idea that a girl needs more than one machine! He looked very skeptical that this was true. Oh, innocent Gregg. These projects I have been slowly working on during the past month and saved up to post them all in one fell swoop.

hexagon flower :: I so needed a patch that would cover my soon to be exposed bum. Perfect timing for the sew mama sew post to show up. Next time, I will just cut out hexagons and applique them to the object though.

flower hexagon patch

Eric Carle :: I am in love with the fabric by Eric Carle. I got some of the Brown Bear fabric for a special project and threw in a half yard of this hungry caterpillar print. I am not sure though if others would get that these are from the Hungry Caterpillar and not just pictures with holes in them (not sure I would). But I do know and they are cute!
eric carle applique

eric carle applique

Table Topper :: I tried out this design for a table topper. I like the straight edges combined with the diagonals. I made this one for a friend and I hope to make us one with Christmas fabrics.

table runner

Bloomers :: The bloomers pattern is from Weekend Sewing. Seriously easy. I love me some elastic thread. The top/dress was based off the sunny day top from House on Hill Road. I am hoping this will fit a 6-12 month old lady.
baby dress and bloomers

baby dress and bloomers

I wish I could say I am off to sew some more but I caught the mean bug that my girl had the past two days. not as fun as all.

Sunday, August 23

sock monkey and a firefighter hat pattern

craft hope sock monkey

Sock monkeys for Craft Hope's project 4! All the sock monkeys are going to kids at a burn camp so they mentioned that incorporating some firefighting gear on the sock monkey would be awesome. So I made a firefighter hat (so why I love crochet, you can make almost anything out of that one little hook!)

I used this sock monkey tutorial (I needed some more pictures than the standard instructions.)

I tried a few patterns for firefighter hats but I just couldn't figure them out or didn't feel like sizing them for the monkey's head. Here is what I came up with:

craft hope sock monkey

Firefighter hat for sock monkey

F hook
Caron simply soft yarn


Row 1: Make magic loop, chain (CH) 3, 11 double crochet (DC) around loop. Pull loop tight. Slip stitch into top of chain 3. Ch 3.

Row 2: In same stitch as Ch3, 1 DC. In each stitch, 2 DC, around. Slip stitch into top of chain 3. Ch 3.

Row 3: In same stitch as Ch3, 1 DC. 1 DC in next stitch, 2 DC in next stitch, around. Slip stitch into top of chain 3. Ch 3.

Row 4: In same stitch as Ch3, 1 DC. 1 DC in each of first 2 stitches, 2 DC in next, around. Slip stitch into top of chain 3. Ch 3. (start checking the size of the hat with the monkey's head now, you might find you don't need to do all the increases in row 5, I didn't, just some spaced around. Also you might not need all the length in rows 6-8 or more depending on where you put the ears.)

Row 5: In same stitch as Ch3, 1 DC. 1 DC in each of first 4 stitches, 2 DC in next, around. Slip stitch into top of chain 3. Ch 3. (I ended up with 37 stitches)

Row 6-8: In same stitch as Ch3, 1 DC. 1 DC in each stitch around. Slip stitch into top of chain 3. Ch 1.


1 half double crochet (HDC) in front loop of next 26 stitches. Chain 1 and turn.

1 HDC in each stitch across to the beginning for front brim. SC down to next available non front brim stitch.


HDC in back loop (this will be on the same side as the front loop stitches on the front brim) of remaining stitches across (I had 12).

Next 3 rows, decrease one stitch at beginning of each row, HDC across rows to last two stitches, decrease another stitch. (the brim had 6 stitches at the end)

?does this make any sense? Please let me know if you find any mistakes, I will fix it right away!


I used these instructions for the number plate.

I attached the number plate to the hat while back stitching the number on the plate with black yarn. Basically, I embroidered the number right through the number plate and the hat.

Finger press the middle of the hat to make the helmet indent.

craft hope sock monkey
cute little guy! (I think Santa is going to bring my girl one)

Friday, August 21

summer baking

banana blueberry muffins

banana blueberry muffins

(recipe adapted from this one)

1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup white flour
3/4 cup brown sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp cardamom
zest from 1 lemon
2 large bananas mashed (mine made just under 1.5 cups)
1 Tbl olive oil
1 tsp vanilla
2 whole eggs
milk (as much as you need to make the muffin mix a bit wetter, if you like dry muffins don't add, I think I added less than 1/4 cup)
almost 1 pint of blueberries (packed as many as I could in the muffins)

:: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease a 12 cup muffin pan.

In a large bowl, mix the flours, brown sugar, spices, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. In a separate bowl, mix the bananas, eggs, olive oil, lemon zest, and vanilla extract.

:: Mix the banana mixture into the flour mixture until smooth. Add milk here if you need. Fold in the blueberries. Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin pan.

Bake 16 minutes in the preheated oven, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean.

this is a dead easy recipe and super good.

peach pie

peach pie

Use this pie crust recipe, seriously, the best I have ever had and really easy to make. Trust me, there is no crying (or throwing of the dough against the wall) when I use this crust.


6 cups sliced peeled peaches
1 tbs lemon juice
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground allspice
pinch of cardamom
1/4 tsp salt
2 tbs butter

:: Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

:: Line the bottom and sides of a 9 inch pie plate with one of the pie crusts.

:: Place the sliced peaches in a large bowl, and sprinkle with lemon juice. Mix gently. In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, cinnamon, allspice and salt. Pour over the peaches, and mix gently. Pour into the pie crust, and dot with butter. Cover with the other pie crust, and fold the edges under. Flute the edges to seal. Brush milk over the crust and sprinkle with sugar. Cut several slits in the top crust to vent steam.

:: Bake for 10 minutes in the preheated oven, then reduce the heat to 350 degrees F and bake for an additional 30 to 35 minutes, until the crust is brown.

Gregg always says the best pie is apple, he might not even try other pies simply because he knows he will be disappointed that the filling is not apple. However, he said this peach pie makes him forget about apple pie. That is HUGE! I am not like that, I like any pie, especially for breakfast with my coffee.

ps... did you see Project Runway last night? I would love to see what my red carpet dress would look like after only a day and a half to design and sew one up? HA! Designers are so talented (sigh).

Wednesday, August 19

a lake

I heard about a lake that is only 40 minutes away from some of my neighbors, who knew there was one so close? I guess last year whenever it was hot we just went to Hershey Park. No such luck for us this year without season passes and actually it really hasn't been that hot, but now the hotness is here. So after a mere mention of the word swimming to Lilly this weekend, we were off.

Her lake outfit. (she packed plastic food for us in her lunch box)
August 218

The lake must be man made because it has cement slabs and a fence on the borders and there is no beach leading up to it just grass and trees but it was nice to sit in the shade. Lilly and Gregg swam the whole time, with 2 minute stuff-her-face-with-as-many-sun-chips-as-she-could breaks for Lilly. I swam a tiny bit and mainly sat in the shade and crocheted. I have to keep up my white legs, no tan here!

August 223

August 225

August 226

August 229

August 235

August 245
(seriously, leave me alone about my white body, I am trying to put myself in front of the camera more so Lilly knows I was actually around)

Tuesday, August 18

version 6

thank you for your comments on the pinwheel quilt!

stripey stocking


stripey blanket DONE!
fireman's hat for craft hope DONE!
bracelets ugghhh


Gregg's Christmas stocking DONE!


string pillow
sock monkey for craft hope DONE!
superhero cape DONE!
wonky block quilt DONE!
hexagon flower DONE!
shoulder bag of somesort DONE!
market skirt DONE!



framed silhouettes wip, just need frames still, seriously I vow to finish this one, it will not be on the next list
color mobile
art hook

Things I am totally in love with but way too nervous to try (maybe):

wonky butterfly block
paper pieced rainbow swirl block (btw, my love for this is OUT OF CONTROL)

Previous Lists:
Version 1
Version 2
Version 3
Version 4

Monday, August 17

cake and a pinwheel quilt

Martha's apple and blackberry cake

I hope you had a good weekend. I hate how they always go way to fast. At 10:30ish am on Saturday, I picked up the mail that included the September issue of Martha. Always a treat! By 230ish we were stuffing our faces with apple and blackberry cake (page 135). Luckily, I had just picked up both fruits during our weekly orchard trip before getting the mail and had a serious craving for baked goods. I don't have a spring form pan so I used a bundt pan, not as pretty. It doesn't really matter what it looks like because the apples completely melt away into soft sweetness.

pinwheel baby quilt

Another boyish quilt, I cut the fabrics for this one at the same time as the zig zag one. This is probably my best technically made quilt yet, however, after sewing the pinwheels together, I wish I would have added in some white sashing in between them. It is also a little small, after washing 37 inches square. It seems crazy to spend time on a quilt that is so small, not sure how much this will get used, but maybe this size would be good for the car or stroller?

pinwheel baby quilt

How cute is that flannel backing? I have been eying this stuff for awhile and was happy to get some for this quilt. I did mess up the backing when I pinned the quilt together, it is slightly crooked. I need to figure out a better system to make sure the backing is the right angle to the front. I have been struggling with the tension during stippling, this time I got some machine quilting thread and the stippling worked up like a dream.

All in all I made good strides in the technical aspect of quilting, I have also decided to shoot to make bigger quilts, and realized I might be addicted...3 more in the works...

Pattern: pinwheel (I was inspired by this tutorial but sewed the squares and then cut two triangles like this tutorial)

Size: 37" inches square

pinwheel baby quilt

Wednesday, August 12

eeeeekkk!! the cuteness!!

You could say that I have been obsessed with making baby hats. This might be seen as torture since we will have to wait a little bit before I can make a hat for our baby but it most definitely is not torture. I have had so much fun making these hats! It started with making a hat for a friend's little boy turning one. What to make for a one year old boy? Boys always stump me for crafting. So I went super practical and decided to make him a hat for the winter months (ssshhh he didn't know it was a super lame gift). I first used what I thought was my favorite hat pattern (rav link) but added some length and rows to make it bigger. BUT it didn't fit him. So I had his mama measure his head and I decided to make a way cooler hat, the skater beanie. Which is supposed to fit tight...

skater crochet hat

BUT it didn't fit him still. So I made a bigger version of the skater beanie. Still cool, I might add.
skater beanie

It FITS!! and while it was a brief try on session, just too hot for such things, it looked super cute on the cool little dude.

I had such a good time crocheting the skater hats, I thought about this butterfly hat pattern I found awhile back and hadn't done yet.
butterfly hat

CAN YOU STAND IT?? How cute is that hat? I made two, one super small and one very small. I need to grab my little neighbor downstairs (Mel? Sopfia?) to see how they fit.

Then a sewing project. I branched out from my normal child's apron. That apron is perfect for dress up and tea parties but what about a 4 year old who LOVES to help her mama in the kitchen? This girl needed a proper full length apron. My mom made my girl and myself aprons last year. So I used my mom's idea as my pattern. I included buttonholes on the neck to ensure a good fit that would last for her and then her sister.
childs apron

Monday, August 10

buttony sweater!

buttony sweater

I am really happy with this sweater. If I could change one thing though it would be my loose cast on and thus loose stitches to the start of the sweater, blocking didn't help this as much as I wanted it too. (you can see the loose stitches on the back photo). The buttony pattern is a little vague so I used some mods I found in ravelry, if you are interested please check my ravelry project page.

buttony sweater

I just need some buttons, I feel like this is a REALLY important decision so I am going to carefully consider my options first.

my next knitting project...flower shirt for Lills.
beginnings of a flower shirt

Thursday, August 6

mod tree wall hanging

I know it is only August. But when you see a project you get all giddy and freakin' pumped about, you should just go ahead and make it. Plus, I am already in Christmas mode with the stockings and all. So this past weekend, I made a wall hanging.

mod christmas tree wall hanging

I absolutely loved the Christmas tree skirt tutorial at SMS. But I don't need a Christmas tree skirt. My mom made me a pretty red and white one a few years ago. But because we always spend Christmas at our families house (except for that one Christmas we spent on bed rest while baking my daughter), we haven't gotten to use it. So I used the modern tree block for a wall hanging. I did the tutorial as stated for the block but in the end mine was 15.5 by 17.5 instead of 15.5 inches square. (I have yet to figure out what I did wrong.) Then I cut 4 inch strips of fabric to go around as a thick border, quilted, binded, done! The white fabric is my first project with kona cotton, awww, nice stuff. My mom has been raving about it for awhile now. I can see why mom, but maybe I should put it in a blanket instead of on the wall. Those maverick stars are also great. Nicole suggested how perfect either block would be as a pillow cover. oh yes!

mod christmas tree wall hanging
(don't mind those uneven dots, the fabric was not printed right and I was just too lazy to fussy cut it, I mean it should have been straight lines of dots, why should I have to do more work? my first annoyance with Joann fabrics)

Jenni: Gregg, are you surprised I am Christmas crafting?
Gregg: absolutely not.
Jenni: (smiles with a sigh)