Monday, January 31, 2011

Fabulous Under the Sea CQ RR Blocks Received

Happy Snow Day! Can you believe this crazeeeee weather! I've for one have had my share of snow for the year.

Still working on revamping my little sewing studio but you know... every once in a while you need to take a break before you reach that "burn out" stage. I've got all the priming and painting done and now am working on figuring out which piece of furniture I can live without... just need to find a place to put all my STUFF! Do you ever wonder how much $ you've spent on your collections?

I figured that my FQs alone filled 6 of the wire baskets at 170 each, giving me a total of approx. 1020 FQs... divide that by 4 and you get 255 yards of fabric just in FQ's... whats worse is when you think on average a FQ is $2.50 - that's $2,550 just in 18x22 pieces of fabric! This doesn't even take into consideration all the yardage of cotton fabrics piled high nor the 14 boxes of crazy quilt fabric I've collected over the years. OH! And we won't even go into the tons of lace I've bought! Yikes! Can you see why I needed to take a break from it! I could have bought summer home in Maui for the $ I've spent. Shhhhhh please don't tell Rob on me LOL! If you think about it, us quilters could probably save the US economy!

So ~ since I've taken a break from my room I thought I would share with you a new set of RR Crazy Quilt blocks that were returned to me completed. This UTS (Under the Sea) RR was hosted by CQI. Each lady sent out a set of 5, 6" blocks to be CQ'd by the next person in line to receive them. I love all of the work done and will most likely try and make a little book out of all of them. Many thanks to Carolyn, Ritva, Beryl, Alice and Kerry.

A gorgeous treasure chest created (hand painted) and filled with jewels for me by Carolyn:

This is the block I embellished for Beryl:

This block with the cute little fishies swimming in the castle was created for me by Beryl:
Love the beautiful ocean floor and waves created for me by Alice:

This block I embellished for Alice:
What a gorgeous underwater scene created by Ritva

and finally... Kerry's beautiful silk ribbon seahorse.

WOW! What a collection! Thank you ladies - I love them all!

Monday, January 17, 2011

Sewing Room Paint Job - Not as young as I used to be!

Before I begin with my update on what I've accomplished so far on my soon to be new sewing room, I'd like to say Thank you to all of you for all the sweet comments you've been leaving me on my blog and emailing. I appreciate all your feedback and the wonderful ideas and blogs that you all have been sharing with me. To answer a few questions... yes, I am CQing when I'm not trying to get my room done and yes, I do plan on dyeing up more laces...soon - I just need to find 3 straight days to devote to it. I will jump in here during my sewing room updates with new CQ items too.

WEW... remember the days when you could jump out of bed full steam and do a million and one things and still be going at 10:00 at night? Well... I have to admit - those days are gone LOL!

Saturday morning I got up bright and early with one mission on my mind. I was bound and determined to get my sewing room completely painted before the weekend was over. Yep - I did it.... but when I woke up today my poor old body was a aching!

After setting up the new wire basket unit and looking at my bright white closet cabinets, something just didn't look right. I couldn't stand looking at such a fresh white newness compared to the beige color of the wall trim, cabinets and the wooden doors. So..... pulled out the primer and paint and went to town. I did in fact end up getting it all done -

Once I started painting the cabinets I could really see the difference - the old look just seemed so dull.... can you see how fresh that white looks? (sorry about the pictures, need to get some new batteries)

Once the painting in the room was done I couldn't stop there! I had left over paint that I was going to have to dump back into the can so decided to see what else I could paint.... call me one paint happy gal!

A few years ago I bought these two wooden CD towers at a local Christmas Tree Shop for about $4.95 each. They were originally red with doors on them - ugly! At the time I bought them for my FQs but since I have the new wire baskets (which by the way hold 168 FQ's in each!) I decided to paint them up and have Rob hang them up to be used to store beads. Total cost: A little bit of time and $0.... I'm liking this recyling!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

A Sewing Room Journey

It's time! Yep... I'm finally at the point that I can start thinking about revamping my sewing room. As you know, last April was a horrendous time for us up here in New England and for me, a sad time as my basement was flooded and I had to say goodbye to my cute little hiding place. I'd like to invite you to come along with me on a journey to reclaim this room as my little bit of heaven. Someplace that I can pretend, at any time of the year, that it is sunny and warm.

This was once my little playroom... a place where I could turn on my favorite tunes, relax and pretend like I was in Maui (my collection of sarongs to remind me) and let the creative ideas flow. It's sad to think it is no longer but what is even sadder is the fact that my little Brat cat is no longer with me to keep me company.

This is what a portion of our basement looked like while all the jack hammering was going on to install a new pump system ... they had to do this all around the inside of the basement - can you say messy!!! Well at least the flood waters cleaned the floors!

And here is where I am at today. The walls and floors have been repaired and the cabinets hug. I'm finally nearing the time to "Move back home!" I'm so happy that I've got my cork floors back - yea! (They are the best thing for an aching back) And Rob, well he is so happy that the end is in sight... he'll no longer have to look at my piles and piles of fabric in the dining room. Poor guy, you know how many times he's been dressed for work only to find bit of my left over threads hanging off his pants?!!

For the past couple of weeks my head has been spinning with a million ideas. I really miss my old sewing room but this time around I want to take full advantage of every single inch of real estate that I have in this little 11x13 room.

I have spent a couple weeks measuring, searching out various sewing room ideas and have finally come up with a room plan that I think will work for my needs. A cutting/ ironing station, plenty of drawers/storage for both my CQ fabrics and cottons, storage for all my FQ's, laces, beads, threads and trims. I even found an extra 6" of space between my desk and vintage cabinet to hide my cutting mats, large rulers and small ironing board so they are out of the way. One thing that I really wanted was enough room to set up a 4ft folding table to use when I dye laces - got it now! Now I can finally get all of my CQ goodies out of my upstairs office and in one place. I'll now use my upstairs office for my computer needs, regular quilting/art books & magazines and a work station for my Etsy shop. You can bet I'll be getting plenty of exercise over the next 2-3 weeks going up and down the stairs.

For the most part I am going to try and recyle anything that I feel I can use to make my room more CQ efficient. My only new installment (so far) has been this new wire basket storage bin which I will use to store my CQ fabrics and FQ's. This unit was a Christmas present from my darlin hubby... he even put them together for me this morning. I bought them at Ikea (LOVE that store!) ... would you believe the wire baskets only cost $2.50 each and each one holds 168 FQ's!!! I bought 3 separate units - the whole unit together only cost $111 and consists of : 3 tops, 3 frames and 18 wire baskets... I'd say that was a pretty good deal!

These cabinets units were saved (sooo happy!) and were bought at Home Depot for around $135 each. They hold tons of fabric BUT... if you buy them be sure to rebrace the shelves with brackets - ask me how I know to do this!!! Crash! All the shelves came down from the weight of the fabrics and I had to pull everything out and then reload... not fun! They are worth every penny spent as they are deep and hold a ton!

I'm still compiling a list of ideas to make it easy for me to have all my CQ goodies right at hand so if anyone has an idea to share please let me know. I have a few items that I will be making over the next week or so and will share step by steps as to how and why I am making them. My first project, once I get the rest of my shelving up. is to make a chalk board or drywall board by having hubby cut a piece of wood to fit an old wooden frame I have. Home Depot has some black paint that you can make a chalk board out of and I've just been told they also have one the make a white board... but I really don't need to do both... hmmm, wonder which one would be better? I'll be hanging this on a door that I can't block as it has our heating tank behind it... also I will be making a roll up design board to hang off of a curtain rod I already have mounted above the door..... certainly don't want to waste an inch of space!

Please stop by again to watch my progress and if you have an idea you want to share, please do. It just might be something I could use to make better use of my space.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Crazy Quilt RR Blocks

Last year I upped my blogged by at least one post so this year I have decided that my goal is to try and post at least once a week. I've collected so many pretty CQ items over the past year. as well as other techniques that I have learned, that I thought I would start sharing them more often.

Let me start with a couple blocks that were worked on by some of my wonderful and talented Crazy Quilt friends.
During my crazy cross stitch days I was as passionate about cross stitching as I am about crazy quilting today. I have a drawer full of motifs that I made and have been waiting for just the right project to come along to use some of them. When it was posted that CQI was having another RR - this one with the theme "lace", I had to jump in. I pulled out a couple of pretty little fans that had been waiting for years to be made into something and off I went to create an eye pleasing color pallet of silks, satins, brocades and cottons. This first block was sent to my friend Lisa in new Zealand as a one-on-one swap between the two of us. She did a beautiful job on it and as you will see further down, it matches the CQ RR block perfectly! Thank you Lisa for swapping with me - I love it!

Paula sent me her naked block and had asked that I keep it in the same color pallet mentioning she loved roses. She also wanted me to leave her room to work on it. I tried not to get too carried away but once you pick up that needle sometimes it just too hard to let it go. This is the block I made her in return.

Now, Have you ever seen anything so dainty and so pretty? I love this block! This is the block that I submitted to the CQI Group for the "Lace RR" .

BTW - There is a CQI direct link button on my sidebar - if you click on that button you will enter a world of Crazy Quilting.

I'd say this RR was THE perfect avenue to embellish upon my pretty fans. Thanks to all the ladies who worked on it and to Paula for making a beautiful matched block. I plan on making them into pillows ..... soon.


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