Tuesday, July 21, 2009

New Laundry Detergent

Awhile ago I gave you homemade recipes for laundry detergent and dish detergent. Both formulas used Borax, a substance which is found in many homemade cleaning recipes. Borax has had some bad press lately which leads me to believe it is not the best thing to use around the house. Read this entry here from Passionate Homemaking about Borax.

I decided awhile ago to quit using/making the homemade laundry detergents and dish detergents until I was able to find a recipe that was easy to make and store. Until that time, I have been using Charlie's Soap as my laundry detergent. I love this product. It makes my clothes smell "clean" without using any fragrances. It is non-toxic, biodegradable and hypoallergenic. It is gentle enough for babies' clothing and strong enough to wash cloth diapers! I know it might not work for everyone with super sensitive skin, but it works for us.

Soap nuts are another option which I have yet to try, but am very curious about. I have heard good things about these nuts. They are the dried fruit of the Chinese Soapberry tree. How cool is that? A 100% natural option. Check out Passionate Homemaking's review here and here. My friend also tried these and liked them-- see her post here. I think once I run out of Charlie's Soap I will try this option.

I haven't discovered a great dish detergent product yet, so I don't have much to offer on that subject. However, if you are interested in making your own dish detergent, here is a recipe you can use (courtesy of Passionate Homemaking again). I haven't made that recipe yet, but hope to soon enough.

That's it for today.

Monday, July 20, 2009

By the sea

Here is another quilt that I'm going to put up on Etsy. I purposely made it with more "boy" colors in mind. It's sea inspired with turtles, ships, shells and anchors.

I love the backing on this one. Fun circles that remind me of sea bubbles. This is the first time I've used 100% cotton as the backing instead of flannel. It makes the quilt lighter and more flexible. I don't know what kind of backing I like best yet.
Another free hand meandering pattern.

I just love how the white strips make the patches pop.

Here it is.

My secret

Recently, a few people have asked me where I get my quilting patterns and I'm happy to pass on the site because it is so inspiring and fun to look through-- the Moda Bake Shop. I have fallen in love with Moda fabrics, so when I came across this site I was in heaven. Check it out and see if you are not bit by the Moda fabric bug!

Some of the patterns I use I just make up, so I'm not much help there. I love charm packs which are 5 x 5 inch squares of fabric, so that sort of dominates what pattern I come up with. I am trying to branch out with my patterns, so keep checking back to see what I've come up with.

Thanks for all the great words of encouragement.

Quilting rocks.

And I'm a dork. And I embrace it!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Etsy Store is open

Thanks everyone for your kind words of encouragement. I've opened my Etsy store! I've created a permanent link to it on my sidebar. Or just click here.

I've got the stacked coin quilt up for sale now. I'm hoping to work on a new quilt this weekend, and I just bought the cutest fabric, so I hope to have a few more options up there soon.

If you know of anyone who would like an adorable baby quilt, please pass my name, blog or etsy store information on to them!


Wednesday, July 15, 2009

My favorite (so far)

Maybe this obsession won't end any time soon?

This is my favorite creation so far. It is so fun and bright and just plain cute. It's a stacked coins baby quilt. I used the Moda fabric "Soiree" by Lila tueller.

I machine quilted in a free hand meandering pattern.

I love it so much I want to keept it.

But I'm not. This will be my first creation that I put on Etsy. Wish me luck.
I'll link to my Etsy page as soon as I get it up and running.


I've taken the plunge and opened a little store on Etsy. It's a place to sell handmade and vintage items. It is such a cool site and just about anything you want to find (handmade) is on there.

I will be posting some quilts on there, because, quite frankly, one person does not need 15 baby quilts. And I need to sell some so I can buy some more fabric!!! When I get myself organized I will post a link on my sidebar. Please come and visit me there and let me know if you are ever in the need of a baby quilt, stamped card or something knitted.

Oh by the way, I've made my favorite quilt thus far. It is bright and fun and I love it! I will post pictures soon. It will be the first thing I try to sell on Etsy.

Monday, July 13, 2009


I've been lulled by the sweet whisperings of summer. Didn't that sound poetic? But what does this mean you ask--

Basically, what it means is that I've gotten lazy about keeping up with my busy after-work schedule during the summer. I can't help it. I just want to go home after work and do nothing. Just sit and do absolutely nothing. It's quite pitiful really.

I have no desire to dance (and this is after watching and re-watching So You Think You Can Dance- which usually inspires the mess out of me)

I have no desire to workout (it is after all short-wearing and bathing suit season, but still the motivation is lacking)

I have no desire to cook (I had mashed potatoes last night for dinner)

I have no desire to stamp (and I have new stuff to work with every month)

I have no desire to shop (either for food or other stuff- even when there is an incredible deal out there)

I sometimes have a desire to quilt (it just depends on the day)

I just want to sit and do nothing. And I'm enjoying it. I was so busy this past year and it just sort of culminated into this do nothing attitude once June hit. And I'm okay with this new summer approach for now.

Have no fear though, I will be up and at 'em in mid-August when dance starts. But for now, I'll just sit and be still.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

3rd Quilt

Okay, can you tell that I'm on a quilting kick here. Don't worry, it probably won't last too much longer!

So, here is the brightest quilt I've made to date. Instead of charm packs I used a Moda jelly roll (long strips of fabric).

Sewed the strips of fabric together . . .

And created a basket weave pattern.

Hard to see in this picture, but I used a cute polka dot flannel for the backing. This is the second quilt I used the free motion quilting stipple technique on.

And here it is.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Quilt No. 2

Here is quilt number two.

This was my first attempt at free motion quilting. Basically it is drawing with a sewing machine. I had to get a whole new foot and feed cover for this technique. I used the stipple technique. It seemed the easiest to master for my first time. Looks like puzzle pieces.

I loved the flannel I found for this quilt. It just fit so well with the overall colors.

I was a little hesitant on the sashing fabric- the brown fabric. There was no brown in the quilt, but the flowers matched some of the patchwork quilt flowers, so I went for it. Overall, I was pleased with the result.

I thought this quilt was the perfect gift for a friend and her new baby girl, so rolled it up, put a ribbon on it and sent it off.

Let me know what you think.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

My upcoming weekend

I have big plans this weekend. Oh, yes I do. I want to do some baking, some sewing, some cleaning, and some fire works watching.

It remains to be seen just how much of that I can get done.

I need to make some freezer cookies (frozen homemade cookie dough that we can easily put in the oven when the overwhelming "I must have something sweet now" desire hits Grant).

I need to make a dinner for a friend that just had a baby.

I would like to make a frozen dinner or two for those crazy nights when neither of us gets home until 9:00.

I would like to go to the farmer's market and get some eggs, veges and fruit.

I would like to sew a skirt from a pattern I found in a book.

I would like to finish the binding on my third quilt.

I would like to start another quilt top.

I would like to take advantage of a fabric sale this weekend.

I need to do my usual cleaning of the house.

I would like to have a bbq for two on the 4th with a special dessert that I have yet to decide on.

I would like to not get rained on again when we watch the fireworks.

Hope you all have a wonderful 4th of July!!