Kids Clothes Week – Quick Change Trousers

I struggled with Kids Clothes Week this year as my kiddo is at the age where he has very strong opinions on his outfits.  There must be jeans, there must be t-shirts.  No other clothes are acceptable.  It took lovely Ms. Mucho to remind me that there is nothing that says the clothes have to be for your child. So I decided to make a favorite from my own child’s past for a new little one.  These are the Quick Change Trousers from Handmade Beginnings.  I made the 12-18 month size for my friend whose little Z is just about 1.

Giraffe Pants

The really awesome part of these pants is that they are reversible.  Which makes them a bit stronger for that walking/crawling stage.  Also, gives you more chances to use cute fabric.  For one side I used a giraffe print for the main part of the legs and an olive green panel for extra diaper space.  The other side is a ombre blue leg with a mustache bum.

Mustache Back

What I really like here is that the fabric is left over from a blanket made for this exact same baby way back.

Front side

How cute is the giraffe print peaking out when the cuffs are turned?

New Toy!

My new machine is here and I love her.  She has so many tricks and is such a good girl. She knows how to cut her own thread

cuts thread

and she has a clear bobbin cover so you can see when the thread is running out – which is brilliant.

bobbin cover

and she can take on big old quilting projects without complaint.  She is oh so quiet.  The boy even said so. My husband is now regretting he didn’t get me one back when we lived in a loft (sewing is rather loud in a shared space).


She still needs a name, though. I’m taking suggestions so feel free to post them.

April Fools Pranks Played on My Son

The boy has feeling about “eating green things”.  They are not good feelings. He has also just discovered April Fools Day this year.  His joke was “Mom, something happened today. I dropped my Darth Maul lego guy in the toilet and accidentally flushed. APRIL FOOLS DAY!!!!!”  If there had been even a slight pause between the story and the punch line, it would have been a great prank on me.

Clearly, I had to show him how it’s done.

april fools plants

I had seen this on Pinterest and put a plan into action.  I came home, made pudding (with the boy watching the whole time), and sent him downstairs to play with daddy.  I put the pudding in some ceramic cups, the closest to a flower pot I could find.  While that cooled, I crushed some Thin Mint-like cookies and crumbled them on top.  Finally, I added a sprig of mint to each pot.

april fools plants all

I took the plants downstairs and told a nice story about how I had picked these up at the Ferry Building farmers market.  The guy had said the dirt was edible. Do you think we should try it?

“Noooooooo, grossssss”

“Really?  I have a spoon.  I think it might be kind of fun to eat dirt”

I took a bite.  He looked shocked.  I offered one to him.  He said no.  Daddy took mercy and said the dirt kind of smelled like chocolate.  He put it together. APRIL FOOLS!!

Victory is mine.

final reward

While I Wait

Idle hands and all…  so while I wait for my new sewing machine to arrive I pulled out an old friend.  A good project that has sat for quite some time as I didn’t really realize how much work it was going to be.  Still pretty though. I’m making much better time now that I decided to make my stitches bigger.  I may even finish.


Hold on that Quilting

Working with the god-awful walking foot on my old timer Singer reminded me again how much I really want a new machine.  Not that mine is bad but with the amount of sewing I do and the new fangled thingies the new machines have… it’s time.  I could spend a lot of time, go to sewing stores, etc (everyone will tell you to do this).  OR I could use a gift certificate on Amazon and just buy what Ms. Mucho has.  YEAH, I think I’ll do that second one.

wait… click, click, click… back

Yay, new machine arrives on Monday :)

Radiant Orchid – Detour to Grandma’s House

She’s Done!  Well, not quite done but the quilt top is done.  While I had, of course, planned to have this baby sandwiched, quilted, and bound by today, it became pretty clear that wasn’t going to happen.  Between working, mothering, and otherwise having a non-sewing life I failed to get the batting that is a requirement for doing the quilting.  On the positive side, Oakland decided to put on a show last weekend of just how pretty it can be here and I took the opportunity to pin the quilt top to the magnolia in the front yard and get some nice pictures using a camera other than my phone.

Pantone Quilt Trees

I based my quilt on the Lovely Little Tress in the Forest Quilt but instead of a wall hanging with green trees I made a 38″x44″ radiant orchid forest using solids from Pink Chalk Fabrics.  I also arranged my trees to make a path for my special guests.

Pantone Quilt Trees

Little Red here needs to make her way through this very odd forest to her pal The Wolf.  See, Grandmother’s house loses some of it’s appeal when the forest turns purple.  Days like these call for adventure.



little red the wolf

My plan calls for the winding path to be done in the quilting. I’m pretty excited to see how it will turn out.





It look me a couple of tries to get the trees to come out ‘non-wonky’ and the sharpness of the lines leaves a lot to be desired.  I’ve never made a quilt with such small piecing and I clearly need a bit of practice.  Each tree ends up being 3 1/2″ x 4″.

Working on the pattern the trees would take against the white took a good long time but was also my favorite part (other than the embroidery.  I love the embroidery). I used a LOT of tape on my wall – you can see the in progress shots here.  I also continued watching (less) bad movies. The final push saw “Robin Hood, Men in Tights”, “Penelope”, “Who Framed Roger Rabbit” (this was during the embroidery phase), and a couple of “Firefly” episodes. I ended strong.  We’ll see what the quilting phase brings (hint: it will be Luther episodes)

Giants Beware! Part One

Sometimes it’s great to make things BIG, GIANT, HUGE! Perhaps I’m thinking of this as I complete the little fiddly trees of my Radiant Orchid quilt and am reminded that going big can cover a lot of mistakes.

Many moons ago, the husband and I visited Buenos Aires where we ate lots of steak, drank lots of wine and I bought lots of yarn.  Big yarn, little yarn, freakin’ huge yarn.  And ever since then the yarn had sat in bags waiting for a project to come along.  Most yarn in Argentina is not sorted by the US standard thicknesses (no fingerling, DK, worsted, etc.).  Everything will require a swatch and planning – a good practice anyway.  But… I really don’t like planning and am a terrible swatch-er. However, there was one yarn I knew exactly what to do with.  A weird thick/thin almost roving-like cream wool with buttons and fabric tied in.  There is only one thing to do with yarn such as that.  You must make a scarf. Or in my case a cowl as I only brought back 2 skeins.

big yarn cowl

I knit on the biggest needles I could find in my house. Most of the knitting supplies are still in boxes as I’ve been sewing a lot more recently.  My needle case produced these US 17s.  I think going even bigger would have worked well but I’m happy with the fabric made from the 17s.  I used Molly’s Cowl as a guide but didn’t follow it to the letter.  My yarn wouldn’t show definition so it was more about size and keeping the knitting from rolling.

big yarn cowl detail

I blocked it out after finishing and added 3 buttons up the front.  I think I blocked it a bit too much as it grew a lot. It makes me look like I’m in hiding if I wear it all the way up. It is a giant of a thing.

big yarn cowl finished

Bad lighting selfie – I always look harsh when taking pictures of myself