Sewvivor-The Little Waffleflower

I am SO excited for the Sewvivor Season 3 auditions at Family Ever After! I have auditioned for the past 2 seasons so… 3rd time is the charm right?

This year’s theme is QUILTING! When I first found out I seriously think my heart didn’t stop racing for several hours I was so pumped. Last year, I attempted my first machine-quilted project, and I’ve been addicted ever since. For anyone popping over from the competition, or anyone who has forgotten, last year for Christmas I took on the task of making 8 quilts in 2 months. I finished 5 on time, 2 I have since finished, and 1 went horribly wrong and is still sitting in a box in my basement. Now I see that as a pretest for this competition since I’ll only have a short time to finish each project if I have the pleasure of competing. :)

So without further ado, I’ve chosen one of the more complicated quilts I made for Christmas last year, and one of the ones I didn’t finish on time. The Abstract Mountain and Flying Geese Quilt:

 

Mountain and flying geese quilt

I really tried to make each quilt personal for the person receiving it. This one was for my Dad who loves nature and the mountains. I have always had a view of at least 2 mountains wherever I’ve lived, so they really have become a huge part of my life. I don’t think I could ever live in a place where I couldn’t see one or at least big hills of some sort.

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My original inspiration was from these two quilts HERE and HERE. Neither one had any sort of directions, so I did my best to piece it together on my own. For some of the flying geese I used THIS tutorial, and then a few months after Christmas (*ahem!*) I discovered paper piecing and used THIS pattern to finish the rest. (I’m not sure of the original source of the paper piecing pattern as I found it on Pinterest, and the link led to the image I linked too. If you have more accurate information, please let me know so I can update it.)

Abstract mountain and flying geese quilt

I WISH I would have known about paper piecing when I had pieced together the mountains. I’m sure it would have saved me a lot of time and effort. And headaches. And frustration… I do love the way it turned out in the end, but it was definitely a learn-as-you-go type of project since I had never done something like it before. I pieced together the mountains, adding one more strip here and there until I liked how it looked. I then folded over the edges and appliqued around the top of the mountain to the sky background.

Abstract Mountain and Flying Geese Quilt

I wanted the sky section to really have a “sky” feel… Did that sound as corny as I think it did? Oh well. I chose to do an all over swirl for the sky only because it reminded me of swirls of wind created by someone who can actually draw. I was really nervous since I’m not super experienced with free motion quilting, but I love the movement it gave the quilt. It definitely added the feel I was hoping for.

Abstract Mountain and Flying Geese Quilt

I apparently didn’t get a good close-up of the mountains on the front of the quilt before giving it to my Dad, but I think the back also helps show the quilting detail. Each section of the mountain had a different filler pattern. Towards the end I wasn’t sure I would accomplish that, but thankfully I scrounged up enough ideas to finish all the different section. One of my favorites is the “wheat” you can see in the bottom left corner that covered the green section on the front that represents the grassy hill or field coming down off the mountain. The funny looking section on the right hand side of the mountain was super hard to photograph, and I’m super disappointed I couldn’t get a better picture. That section says “World’s Best Dad,” but it just didn’t want to show up on the camera for me.

 

There you have it! I put a lot of love and time into this particular quilt. It was a super fun project that let me explore all different techniques from the quilting world that I often times hadn’t heard of when I began making it. I hope you love it as much as I do and consider me for a spot in Rachel’s quilting competition. I am SO excited and look forward to seeing that amazing things that are made throughout the competition once again. :)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Peekaboo Patterns Pat-A-Cake Romper Release and Review!

It’s been a while… A LONG while. Pretty much I’ve had computer problems for the last 6 months and have lived without my own for a good portion of that. I’m also a super busy Mom of course, and still having other problems with my computer, so I still won’t be blogging as much as I wish I could. BUT I miss sharing the projects I’ve been working on. So here goes. :)

2 weeks ago Amy from the Peekaboo Pattern Shop was looking for pattern testers for a new romper for this year’s summer line. I jumped at the chance and got chosen. (Yay!) I ran to Joanns the next day and found a super cute whale print, got it washed, and then it sat. After several days of feeling yucky I finally sat myself down and went to work.

Pat-a-Cake Romper by Peekaboo Pattern Shop... Romper sewn by Little Waffleflower

 

This pattern is rated at an “intermediate” level. (Which means I’m at least an intermediate level seamstress, right? That’s exciting!) It was fairly easy and straightforward to put together. There were only a few curved pieces that were a little trickier, and the collar ups the difficulty level. I’m still working on getting mine to line up properly! If you skip the collar and opt for a regular inseam instead of snaps, it might even be okay for someone with a little less experience to sew up. All of the patterns I’ve sewn of Amy’s have been very clear and straight forward with clear pictures and simple directions. With a little running around in between, this only took me a few hours to put together, and really was a breeze.

Pat-a-Cake Romper by Peekaboo Pattern Shop... Romper sewn by Little Waffleflower

 

The options for the Pat-a-Cake Romper include shorts or full length pants, snap inseam or regular inseam, regular sleeves or puffed sleeves with piping, collar or no collar, and for all patterns, a button/snap placket down the front that was SUPER easy to do. There were also finishing details such as the bias tape on the inside collared piece that help your finished product look more professional and clean. And don’t be intimidated be intimidated, because she makes it SO easy! The pattern is intended to be made from wovens, but some of the testers sewed it in knit and didn’t have any problem. Oh, and get this… It’s sized for newborns to 4T! Yay! A romper pattern that will last longer. I don’t know about you, but I think little kiddos in rompers are just adorable, and now that season of their lives can be extended a little longer. :)

Pat-a-Cake Romper by Peekaboo Pattern Shop... Romper sewn by Little Waffleflower

 

In case anyone was wondering, Hunter looooved it too. When I put it on him he pointed at the whales and said “Ohhh. The little fishies!” in a very excited and high-pitched 2-year-old voice. (Can you believe he’s 2?!?!) He also had no problem running and climbing and being the wild adventurous boy he normally is while I tried to snap a few pictures before all my energy REALLY ran out. I think the shorts option is perfect for running around in the summer while staying cool and stylish too. The pants options would be nice for cooler days, and I might have to make him a pair once I get some other projects out of the way. Make sure to at least go check out some of the other tester’s pictures on the pattern, and browse around while you’re there. Amy has so many awesome things! If I had more money and more time… ;)

Pat-a-Cake Romper by Peekaboo Pattern Shop... Romper sewn by Little Waffleflower

 

Here’s the pattern again if you want to go check it out specifically! Check out her other ADORABLE rompers while you’re at it. :)

Pat-a-Cake Romper... Lots of options! Size newborn to 4T

So what kind of awesome things have you been up to lately?

 

**This post contains affiliate links. All opinions are my own. I promise to never promote anything I don’t truly believe in and back 100%! :) This particular pattern was also free in exchange for editing feedback.**

 

 

 

 

Mario Quilt (Christmas Reveal)

I haven’t really been able to pick a favorite out of all the quilts I made for Christmas, but if I had to choose one, this might be it. Or my Dad’s which is only half finished, so it’s really too early to say…

My brother is a bit of a gamer. By a bit I mean he spends hours on his computer every day. You get him and my oldest brother together and they’ll sit in the same room, with their laptops, shooting comments about the game back and forth. They usually try to get me sucked in too, but alas I have things called children whom need to be fed and bathed and what-not. No more Runescape for me guys. (I think I just revealed how much of a true nerd I am…) Back when we were younger and still banned from playing games on the computer (we had a bad history of games crashing our computer…), we spent our days running around eating mushrooms and flying… on Super Mario 3 that is. ;)

So one day I’m scrolling through Pinterest, and I see this crocheted Mario blanket. Um, hello lightbulb! Since the blanket was made up of individually crocheted squares, I knew I could just cut squares of fabric and piece them together in the same pattern. Easy project, big wow factor. My favorite. ;) Admittedly, I found this less than a week before his birthday and was trying to figure out how I could scramble and throw it together in under a week. Thankfully, my Mom talked me down and convinced me to save it for a Christmas present. 

Mario Quilt by The Little Waffleflower

 

In case anyone is wondering, I sketched my design on graph paper, separated it into 12 sections. I would work on one section at a time to make a block, and then sewed all my bigger blocks together. Pretty simple! My finished squares were 4″ (4 1/2″ unfinished.) I semi-freehanded the M and circle with a water-soluble pen before quilting. 

Mario Quilt by The Little Waffleflower

 

I really loved the back and how the quilting pattern really stuck out. This particular kind of minky is fickle to take pictures as you can see here. It really is all one lovely charcoal color, but the camera picked up all the shading from where my hands had run across it. Ah well! (See THIS post for my tip for super cheap minky backing.) I did find this super fantastic fabric right before I pieced the backing together, but it was too late to change at that point… BUT! Not for you if you decide to make one, so I’ll pass it on. This designer on Spoonflower has tons of different designs inspired by the original NES controllers and device, which is what we played Mario on the most.

Mario Quilt by The Little Waffleflower

 

My brother was a little bit speechless when he opened this bad boy up. By that point he knew he was getting a blanket, but I don’t think this was quite what he expected! If you end up making your own Mario quilt, I would of course love to see it! :) Anyone else have memories of playing Mario or other NES or SNES games as a kid?

Sewing Bucket List For 2014

On Friday Rachel from Family Ever After shared her 2014 sewing goals. It’s inspired me to make my own bucket list of things I’d like to accomplish this year. I’ve had a list bouncing around in my head, but hopefully if I post it here, I’ll remember to look at it and actually get some of these things done! I’ve learned a lot about sewing in the last year, and I hope to keep that ball rolling this year. So here goes…

Bags

The Weekender Travel Bag

Bohemian Carpet Bag

Clothing

Pajamas (for boys)

Hoodies (for boys)

Summer outfits (for boys)

Ties (for boys)

Little girl dress (to put away? haha)

Formal dress (big or small, any volunteers?)

Getaway Blouse

Maxi Skirt

Jeans

Quilting

Triangle Quilt

Hexagon Quilt

Strip Quilt (Maybe just start this one, I’m not sure I have enough scraps.)

Paper pieced blocks/quilt

Cathedral Window Wall Hanging or Quilt

Other Stuff

Hot pads

Christmas ornaments/stockings/tree skirt

Cover for sewing machine and serger

Ironing board cover

 

I’m quite sure there’s more I can’t think of, and a few projects I’m working out myself… So I better beat down the list of projects still hanging around from last year so I can get to work. What are you planning to work on this year? Any new techniques you want to learn or try? I always love hearing what you all are up too! Happy Monday! :)

11 Take-Out Recipes

I have a little confession to make, I’m kind of a take-out junkie. Well, I would be if I had money to fund it. Haha. A while back the hubs and I accidentally started an unofficial tradition of Chinese and a movie every other Friday night. Pretty soon, I started craving Chinese every Friday. Not so great for the waistline or the budget, hmm? I’ve always loved homemade versions of our restaurant favorites, and I decided pretty quickly I better start making that Friday night meal instead. I love being able to control what the ingredients are, and it’s usually cheaper to make it at home! We also have a some sort of Mexican meal at least once a week, and have for ages… So if you’re trying to cut back on eating out (it is that time of year, isn’t it?), or if you just want a fun dinner for less than your favorite restaurant has to offer, then here’s a round-up for you! Okay, everyone should give these a go because they’re easy and delicious. I’ve tried all of these myself and they’ve always gotten rave reviews at our table. You definitely won’t be missing out by staying home, and there aren’t ever any tummy aches afterwards either. :)

11 Take Recipes at The Little Waffleflower

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Paleo Orange Chicken {Clean Eating Recipe Box}

Baked Honey Sesame Chicken {The Recipe Critic}

Sweet and Sour Chicken {Brown Eyed Baker}

Sesame Chicken {Brown Eyed Baker}

Easy Fried Rice {The Recipe Critic}

Baked Vegetable Egg Rolls {For the Love of Cooking}

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Enchiladas {The Little Waffleflower}

Taco Pizza {The Pioneer Woman}

http://www.sixsistersstuff.com/2013/06/avocado-chicken-enchiladas-recipe.html

DIY Soft Flour Tortillas {Smells Like Home}

Crockpot “Refried” Beans {Pennies and Pancakes}

 

Have a great weekend everyone! See you Monday! :)

Thankful Thursday

I know it’s technically not Thursday anymore, but I didn’t get a chance to share yesterday. Better late than never!

Today I’m most thankful for moments.

I’m thankful for funny moments in the hair salon when a spunky 5-year-old tells his stylist everyone will think he looks stylish now.  I am most especially thankful that he allows her to cut his hair after he began refusing to allow Mom, Dad, Grandma, etc. to do it at home.  I’m thankful that the cute girl who cuts his hair eats up his constant talking and random thoughts and thinks he’s just a doll.

I am thankful for silly moments shared over frozen yogurt.  There’s not much frozen yogurt and silly faces can’t cure!

I am thankful for moments of thought and reflection on car rides, even if they’re short and broken up by constant questions from the back seat.

I am thankful for moments of surprise when you discover your favorite local pizza place has gluten-free crust and its GOOD! I am thankful that we can still enjoy a night out as a family despite our little munchkins recently discovered gluten intolerance.

I am also thankful for quiet moments at the end of the day when the world just melts away for a few minutes and there’s a chance to breathe and unwind from the day.

And since I can’t post about being thankful without posting a ton about my kids, I’m thankful for silly smiles, laughter, and the funny things kids say. Have a great Friday everyone! :)

Girly Pink Quilt (Christmas Reveal)

This was the easiest quilt I did for my massive Christmas endeavor. My little sis LOVES anything hot pink. My specialty! My favorite colors are actually blue and green, but I buy everything in pink. I have a pink blow dryer, pink notebooks, and I even bought a pink phone case. Hmmm… I think I just need a little girl to have an outlet for my pink things obsession. A girl can dream, right? :)

As I’m sure most of you sewist, quilters, etc. know, pink fabric is abundantly  available! I totally scored and got some of these prints out of the “red tag” clearance section at Joann’s, and they had a 50% sale going. I think that made most of these around $2-$3 per yard. I love a good bargain!

Pink Square Quilt by The Little Waffleflower

Unfortunately, I under estimated how much fabric I would need. Lesson learned, always buy more than you think! Luckily, I had some coordinating prints in my stash and it worked out perfectly. :)

Pink Quilt by The Little Waffleflower

Since the large squares made a fairly simple pattern, I wanted to add some pizzazz with some fun quilting. I used hot pink thread and did some large loops. I have to admit, at first I thought I’d made a HUGE mistake with the pink thread, but by the time I finished, I was much happier with it. You might be noticing a pattern here… I usually hate my project somewhere in the middle and want to scrap it. Thankfully the thought of ripping all that stitching out was enough to keep me from doing it. Haha.

Pink Quilt 4

I went with a teal blue backing for this one. Fred Meyer switched to their Christmas blankets right when I went to buy them, so my color selection was severely limited. It worked out great though, and the contrast is fun don’t you think? I used the same binding as I did for my sister-in-laws Ruffle Quilt. I accidentally cut it too wide, so I had to press it by hand, and the extra width threw me a little when I was stitching it on. It still looks fine, but it was a little wonky in places. She still loved it and that’s really all that matters to me. :) (And for the record, it is actually square, but the picture below makes it look not so much. I was so thrilled when all my corners were matching up on my quilts as I folded them… That’s not always been the case in the past!)

Pink Quilt by The Little Waffleflower

I’ve loved hearing about some of the other Christmas projects you did for your families. You all have some pretty inspiring stuff! Keep sharing what you’ve done! I hope you’re having a lovely week. For those who are in the middle of the nasty weather, stay warm! Our prayers go out to you. :)