Monday, May 31, 2010

Baby P

We took the kids over yesterday to meet baby cousin "P". Oh, she is so adorable! In addition to the bird quilt, she got a duplicate of this western quilt (my mom couldn't part with the original in her shop), ...and some taggies. Two of each fabric. We can never have enough of these in our house, so they are going to start off with a bunch! I just love them all! I know she got spoiled, but hello! She is adorable!
The 'big girls' had a great time feeding Willie and running around in the backyard, it was a great Sunday afternoon!

Friday, May 28, 2010


my new little labels! I am not sure this is the final draft, but I like it simple and the size is perfect. I figured that I make enough clothes, it would be nice to have a tag in them. I also ordered size tags that you iron on, and those will go underneath this tag. I ordered both on etsy.
I had a really hard time nailing down what I wanted it to say, and this just seemed to fit. I don't go by Lila Jo (just Lila), but I love my name and I think it works.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

I switched

I recently picked up a pack of these pins... not because I didn't like my old ones, they worked great... these are just easier to see when they get dropped on the floor. I happens daily at our house.I am pleased with my purchase.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Slumber party

Nick bought a couple Strawberry Shortcake videos for the girls, and they have fallen in love. We picked up a couple of these dolls (4 1/2" tall) and the girls asked for blankets and pillows for them. I opted to make sleeping bags from our scrap drawers, and the girls have been playing 'slumber party' ever since!

Friday, May 21, 2010

start to finish quilt {with two kids}

My sister-in-law gave birth to her second child today, a little baby girl! I let her pick a quilt for the baby out of my stack of completed quilts, and she fell in love with this bird quilt. She asked how in the world do I get so much done with two kids? Well, I kept a journal as I made this quilt and it's pretty darn funny. I actually made the quilt in January and just now got around to moving it from a 'draft' to 'publish'. Someday I am going to look back and love this story, but this is life at my house for the time being. Enjoy!

-pick out fabric at quilt shop. destract kids by having them make a map on some cardboard. cut fabric, rewind 17 bobbins by hand. thanks, moo.
-wash fabric, iron as kids play start/stop with dryer.
-narrow down design inspiration... browse film in the fridge website as kids take turns screaming to sit on my lap.
-clear workspace... clean magic oven, coloring books, and little pet shop accessories off table. give it a good wipe-down from yogurt finger painting episode at breakfast. move all dining room chairs into living room so moo doesn't climb up to the table all day.
-fussy cut birds. stop after 5, make lunch. cut one more. get second serving of pickles for bug, sweep up crackers moo crushed into tile. at least it wasn't carpet... finish cutting birds.
-start cutting fabric with no particular plan in mind.
-begin sewing... readjust all settings... straight stitch, stitch length, tension... looks like i had more help from bug than i thought. okay, really start sewing now.
-warm up iron. press seams open? out? wait, iron is out of water. steal bug's tea party kettle to refill. sneak it back before she realizes it's gone. press seams open.
-lay moo down for a nap. finish one block. stop to help bug do a "ribbon project." scratch that, she doesn't actually want to use her ribbon, just have me watch her hold it.
-sew block #2 while explaining birthdays are once a year on a specific day to bug. we can't just pick a day and make it your birthday, even if you really really want to. agree that we can have valentine's day parties every day.
-bug helps sew 2 more blocks, moo wakes up.
-turn on ni-hao kai lan for a distraction, sew 3 more blocks with various minor interruptions. 6 blocks done! good enough for day one.

-ready to start! wait, clean cheese nips off table. then sweep them off the floor. then vacuum them out of the carpet. bad, bad snack idea. move small ironing board to kitchen counter so they don't play on/off with washer & dryer each time I iron a seam.
-sew 2 seams, break up a fight over 'mine!' continue sewing while moo rearranges our food storage in the lazy susan cupboard.
-distract with graham crackers and frosting for a snack, continue sewing.
-rearrange the couch and love seat to make room for the play kitchen in the living room, continue sewing.
-lunch time! cook noodles while sweeping up graham cracker mess. watch helplessly as moo dumps her noodles out of the bowl and eats off the table. draw the line at eating noodles off the carpet. pick noodles out of the carpet.
-iron seams... resort to turning olivia on the tv... done! 12 blocks completed!
-fold and put away laundry on bed so i can lay blocks out. this method worked a lot better before moo figured out how to climb up onto my bed.
-give moo her milk and lay her down for a nap. have bug help lay a blocks out on floor in living room. rearrange blocks. and again. study... rearrange. take pics. time to label blocks! find sticky notes, pins, and marker.
-out comes moo. single-handedly keep her out of the pins, sharpie, and sticky notes while remembering where the block that she took off with fits. pin labels and gather blocks quickly.
-wait impatiently for hours until hubby comes home to run to quilt store for sashing. we really need to get two cars.
-hubby home! sneak out for white sashing and a few groceries. white sashing? check. groceries? check. kids asleep? check. music to my ears.
- wait impatiently for fabric to go through quick cycle in washer/dryer. finish binding the other quilt i have been putting off.
-listen in fear as i pull the fabric out of the dryer... i hear toddler steps. moo. awake and ready to play! we have to do something about bedtime at this house.
-experiment with sashing while trying to get her back to sleep. fail miserably at getting her back to sleep. slowly finish the sashing on four blocks, give up and call it a night.

-distract kids with breakfast while i set up sewing machine, ironing board, etc. in the middle of the dining room... again.
-sew, sew, sew! making progress! stop to get girls cleaned up and dressed. well, they chose swimsuits. that counts as dressed, right? encourage ballerina tea party. back to sewing. all white sashing done.
-lay blocks out on table to have a visual of how much white border to have on each block. dang, table is not big enough to keep them out of kids reach. gather blocks back from kids. sure glad they are labeled!
-overlap blocks enough to lay out on table with leaf in. sew together in rows. sigh of relief, it's actually starting to look like something. sew rows together.
-done! wow. okay, just done with the top. now i have to think about quilting it.
-send it with mom to hang in her quilt shop while i procrastinate quilting it.

... a week later...

-kids went to bed early! i can quilt it! run to quilt store to get the quilt and pick out backing.
-measure top carefully, cut backing
-get home and realize i didn't measure carefully and i am short four inches on backing. crap.
-rummage through stash to find a solid i can use to piece the back. thank goodness i have a stash of pink!
-cut backing, sew together. listen in horror as BOTH kids wake up and want to be right beside me. seriously? can they not pick another night to wake up?
-hubby to the rescue! enter max & ruby on laptop and both kids in booster chairs at the table. right next to me with no option of pulling on the quilt as i sew. that man is brilliant.
-three episodes of max and ruby later, quilt is done. except for binding. that will have to wait for another day.

-sit down to an episode of Chuck with hubby & stitch it on by hand while the girls rest peacefully in bed.

It was totally worth it. Now mom wants me to make another to hang in the shop since this one has found a good home. Not sure I am ready for that yet...

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Under the sea

I let the kids have a lot of say when I am sewing clothes for them, and this time I let Bug pick out her fabric and choose what she wanted. An under-the-sea dress is the result. She giggled the whole way through our photo shoot - I think she likes it!
I made this one the week before last, so the chalk is still on the house in these pics. I let her choose what she wants because more often than not, she will tell me it's for Moo instead. And she remembers what she will. not. wear. UGH!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010


five years ago today Nick and I got married ...and he still makes me incredibly happy. Every day. Love you, honey!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

{double take}

Kids clothes week: day 7
I finally broke into my stash and made one of these easy breasy tanks. Well, I made two. I am just a sucker for matching them. I can't help it. The girls both decided today wasn't going to be a picture day, they were plenty happy with what they were wearing. This was a fun challenge for the week! I ended up with eleven finished garments! Wow!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

I tried...

...but I couldn't stay away from the sewing machine today. I really did try.
My Mother's Day gift this year was a new camera! I just wanted to be able to take better pictures of my girls (and, hello, craft projects!) so I didn't want anything too fancy. Just a step up from a point-and-click. I finally settled on the Sony H20 - on sale at Fred Meyer! I have been drooling over the gorgeous camera straps on etsy, but since this is a mid-size camera, it's too small for the big strap. And too big for a small strap. Solution: A thin lanyard. Just a simple loop with mid-weight interfacing stitched to the wrist cord loop-thing they provided. (and yes, I am still in my race clothes. apparently ambitious enough to start a project but not enough to shower.)

{race day}

We will be taking the day off from sewing and driving to Pocatello for a 5k race for me and a .3 mi race for Bug!
Wish us luck!

UPDATE: We had a great day! Bug had a great time in her race and mine went fairly well, too. I hope to improve through the summer, but we sure had fun today!

Friday, May 14, 2010

sweet pinafores

Kids clothes week: day 5
I had one of these mostly constructed from last week and made the other start to finish today. I used this same pattern with no modifications, although I still wonder why it calls for 5/8" seam allowance. Really? That's huge! It was chilly today, so I snapped a few pictures of the girls outside before we froze and came back in. They weren't interested in 'modeling' for me, so this is what I got.
As soon as I looked at these pictures, I headed out to the deck with a bucket and scrub brush to clean. Looks much better now! Apparently the wall is their interpretation of "don't color on the house."

Thursday, May 13, 2010

trial tank

Kids clothes week: day 4
To fit sewing time in before I went to work, I decided to make an easy tank with elastic thread. I had never tried it on a jersey fabric, so this was a trial made from a thrift store t shirt. There are two sets of three rows of shirring in the front and three rows in the back. Super easy! The straps probably took the longest, but overall cute and easy!
Bug wanted her hair done with every color hair tie for this photo shoot - she is now wanting to choose her own accessories and locations for her pictures!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

take two

Kids clothes week: day 3 / take 2
I loved the pattern so much I printed out the larger sizes and made another! This is a 3T and fits Moo perfectly. She is well fed.

I finished sewing the straps on after the kids were in bed, so maybe before work tomorrow I can sneak in a photo shoot. We'll see.

{beach party}

Kids clothes week: day 3
I used another pattern from the fabulous Kristen at Fiddlehead for this tank (She also made the pattern for one of my other favorite tanks). Super easy! I opted to make thicker straps and just tack them down - the idea of a tie on a little kid just makes me nervous. When I got to the hem, I decided to dig through my stash of 'misc things' and found some corded piping I have never used. I love how it makes the hem a stand-out feature without downplaying the cute shape of the tank. I used this pattern last year, and already had the 24 month/2T size cut, so that's what I made. It barely fits Moo, so when my niece stopped by today, we gave it to her. {does that still count as sewing for my kids?} She is a little more petite than my Moo. I really love it, so they might get matching tanks. We'll see. I got zero cooperation for this photo shoot this morning, just a lot of blurry pics of her running. I thought this one was pretty cute though. Now I just wish we were headed to the beach!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Mini me

Kids clothes week: day 2
I had most of the construction on these done the other day, and just had finishing touches to do.
Bug loves to wear my scrubs around the house and 'be like mommy' so I decided to make her a set of her own. Moo, too. Why not, right? I saw these two matching scrub tops and scored them on a sale day for $1 each. They are an XL and 2X so plenty of fabric to work with. After a really bad attempt at my own pattern for the top, I bought Simplicity 3650. I am not a huge fan of 'real patterns' so I hesitated, but it turned out well with a couple adjustments. Since I was working from a finished garment already, the neckline was really easy, as was the hem on the sleeves. Easy like already done for me. Nice! When I tried them on the girls, I realized the waist needed cinched in a little, so I made a quick casing for elastic in the back and just top stitched it on. The pattern called for a velcro closure, and I substituted buttons instead. Only one button is functional so the extra piece doesn't get lost. I would love to adjust the pattern so the neck hole is big enough for my girls head so it will just slip on. Maybe someday. I made them big... just in case I am lazy this fall and they can wear them for Halloween. Might as well get some wear from these, right? With a little of the extra fabric, I used this tutorial to make masks. So cute. Moo has been walking around saying "I doctor Louise! I doctor Louise!" - she picked it up from an episode of Max & Ruby. That kid regurgitates everything she learns on TV.

Monday, May 10, 2010

dollar dresses

I came across the elsie marley blog today (thanks for the link, jess!) and I am so inspired. I have a couple clothing items that just need finishing touches, and I am excited to focus on clothes for a week! I only work two evenings this week, so I should be able to keep up with the hour a day commitment. Kids clothes week: day 1

Once or twice a month, my local thrift store has 10 for $10 day, when all adult clothing is a dollar. This last week we went and scored two blue men's plaid wrinkle-free shirts. Whoever came up with that fabric is pure genius. Two dollars, two dresses. I love that! I hauled out this pattern again because it really does just rock. The girls had fun playing with the buttons and got to pick which ones went on their own dress. I am thinking about either adding a fabric 'belt' like this, or doing freezer paper star stencils in white up one side. Or I could just leave them as is.

Saturday, May 8, 2010 love

We love polka dots at this house. Love love love them. A lot. So, when I got this ugly car seat from a friend to use as a 'backup' I was excited about the idea of recovering it. The girls were excited that I let them choose the fabric. I have crafting commitment issues, and didn't want my first attempt to be one of the nice ones and be stuck with something I hate forever. We are a one car family & hubby takes it to work (with carseats), so when my Mom takes us out for the day, we need extras. I took a seam ripper and completely took it apart, cut pieces the exact size of the templates, and serged them together. Thank goodness I had taken the 'before' picture or it would have been a disaster putting it all back together. Overall, I like it. Not sure I like it enough to spend an entire day making another one, but I do like it.

Friday, May 7, 2010


I said goodbye to one of my babies last night.
It's silly, but I was really sad to see it go. It was an excellent machine, and if my Bernina hadn't fallen into my lap, I would not have looked for another machine for years and years. I sold it to a friend for his wife for Mother's Day, and I know it is going to a good home. That makes me feel a little better, but still sad. I hope Holly loves it as much as I have!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Lily Pond love

In a desperate attempt for Spring to come, I have been getting summer clothes out and found these dresses I made for the girls last July. It's Moda fabric, and the line is Lily Pond. One of my absolute favorite lines ever. I can't believe how much they have grown! Moo was just learning to walk here. I love all those chubby baby rolls! {july 2009}They only wore these dresses a couple of times last year, but were too short for both girls to wear again this year. My solution? Have them switch! Moo can wear hers as a dress now, and Bug has a new tank!
The girls begged for an outdoor photo shoot, but changed their minds quickly. I love spring... I just wish it would get here!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

simple summer dresses

I picked up this 2x maternity skirt at the thrift store and loved how light and soft the fabric was. Perfect for little girl summer dresses, no? Neither girl was interested in pictures, so this was the best I got. At least they were holding still...
I decided to go with snaps on the neck, they just seemed to be the least amount of work. Lazy, I know, but it looks good and was quick.