Sunday, December 18, 2011

Sunday Stash #4

The other day as I was moving around one stack of fabric to get to another stack of fabric (don't laugh) and I couldn't help but notice that I have an enormous stash of Echino prints - especially some of the older ones.

A small fraction of the hoard

Do you know what's strange? I don't know the foggiest thing about Etsuko Furuya, the designer of all this yummy fabric. Isn't that odd? Other fabric designers have blogs, we see them in magazines, etc., but Etsuko remains a mystery. I did find a photo of her here, but not much else.

If you speak/read Japanese, would you mind giving us a quick translation of her profile on her web site?

Do you have a certain fabric designer you compulsively hoard? No judgment here - I completely understand.

Okay, I'm going to be scarce for the next few weeks. In the meantime - 

Happy Holidays to you and your family!
And may you find some time to do a little stress-free crafting ;)


Friday, December 16, 2011

Counting Down

Today's the last day of the Sew Mama Sew Giveaway Day (week?). This my first time participating and the experience has been absolutely amazing.

In just a few hours I'll announce the winner of the Robert Kaufman Kona solids charm pack. Thanks to all of you who took the time to leave a comment (and become followers). I have so enjoyed reading your comments. FYI, color wheel, rainbow, and bowtie quilts are hot!

Wow, so many of you are quilters! Are you all new to quilting like I am or have you been doing this for eons?

Speaking of something new, I finished my very first mug rug yesterday for the Minneapolis Modern Quilt Guild holiday social/swap last night. What fun! I can see why everybody is making them. It's addictive, and talk about instant gratification. Here's my teeny tiny quilt:



I flipped through my mom's MacKenzie-Childs catalog during our Thanksgiving visit. Those checkerboards must have seeped into my subconscious :)

Now that my mug rug is done, it's time to concentrate on holiday preparations. I only started Christmas shopping yesterday (don't laugh). Today I'm tackling the physical clutter in my sewing room so I can clear out the mental clutter and get down to business. Wish me luck.

See you again at tonight. There's still time to leave a comment to win the charm pack, just head to this post. Good luck!


Friday, December 9, 2011

The Stargazer Quilt and a Charming Giveaway

DRUM ROLL PLEASE.... selected #177. The winner of the Kona Solids charm pack is:



A huge thank you to everyone who entered. I wish I could send you all a charm pack!

Hey, who knew? It's Sew Mama Sew Giveaway Day and I just happen to be doing a giveaway in honor of the completion of my Robert Kaufman Kona Solids Challenge quilt.

Please know, dear readers, that I braved 12 degrees Fahrenheit without mittens to get this shot! Of course today it was 40 degrees. Figures.

My original inspiration was stars twinkling in the night sky, hence the name Stargazer. The many Kona colors look so pretty paired with the navy solid.

So what about this giveaway, you say? Well, I've got a Kona charm pack that needs a loving home.

To enter, leave a comment with the answer to this question:

What will you make with this charm pack if you win it?

For additional chances to win, do one or all of the following (no pressure, though):

  1. "Like" the Mini Mushroom Facebook page.
  2. Become a follower of this blog (that would make my day :)
  3. Tweet about this giveaway on Twitter.
Leave an additional comment for each and all of these actions. Please make sure I can contact you. I'll select a winner at random next Friday, December 16th and announce the winner on this post.

And now I leave you with a quilt action shot:

Gwen after her nap. Check out the quilt back - awesome 80's whales by Ann Kelle.
Happy crafting,

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Tell Me Tuesday #3

Yes, I'm still doing Tell Me Tuesday. I refuse to give up! Today's question is an easy one, though, so please leave an answer -

What's your favorite color combination?

Right now I'm loving medium gray + a bright color (see TMT#2). I hope gray isn't passé because I'm not done with it yet. I wonder what the next "it" neutral will be?
Sherbet Pips WIP
Red and turquoise is still hot IMHO

Friendly yellow + stoic gray

Thanks for leaving an answer. I can't wait to hear about your color faves :)


Monday, December 5, 2011

Toning it Down

True confession. I love bright colors. The brighter the better.

One of several eye-blinding (in a good way) buntings on my Etsy shop

This obsession with color started early with 3/4 sleeve rainbow shirts we all wore in the early 80's. I had the pastel version. Oh, how I loved that shirt. When the neon craze started around the time of WHAM! I embraced the movement with open arms.

Based on the the items in my Etsy shop, it seems pretty clear that all these years later I'm still a little obsessed with rainbows hues (thank goodness I'm no longer obsessed with unicorns - that would be weird).
Earth tones and muted colors don't come naturally (no pun intended) to me, but I'm trying.  Here's a sneak peak at my latest quilt. As I was squaring up endless half-square blocks this weekend, I kept thinking, I can't believe I'm working with this palette.

Blush by Basic Grey for Moda
Isn't it funny how the trends of your youth have a tendency to shape your taste later in life? Wait, they didn't? You mean I'm the only one??  ;)

Ciao for now,

Friday, December 2, 2011

Field Trip Friday

Not so long ago, my dear sweet 2 year old decided she wasn't interested in taking a nap. I was deeply annoyed by her decision but was determined not to let it ruin my day. I loaded her up in the car and off we went to the Minneapolis Institute of Arts to check out a fabric exhibit.

The show is called Optical Effects: 1970s Printed Textiles and here are some highlights for those of you who aren't lucky enough to have this wonderful museum in your neighborhood ;) Please note that I took these photos without the benefit of a flash, which means the pics don't do the prints justice.

I should have just taken a nap...

This was my favorite print in the collection.

Delicious selvage

More delicious selvage

So there you have it. I hope you enjoyed the field trip. If you're in Minneapolis, MN the show runs until 2/26/2012. While this exhibit is small, the Minneapolis Institute of Arts is not to be missed!


P.S. Dear sweet daughter passed out in the car on the way home. Figures!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Tell Me Tuesday #2

Hooray, I'm back home from Portland, Oregon just in time for another installment of Tell Me Tuesday. Last week's question got three responses - maybe we can double the responses this week.

Today's question is inspired by the November Minneapolis Modern Quilt Guild meeting.

What's the best thing you've ever won?

Check out what I won at the last MMQG meeting!

The idea was for each of us to make a Maverick/Wonky Star block with a rainbow theme with a gray background (shade of our choice) and bring it to the meeting. Then we had a drawing for the blocks. Winner takes all!

I was delighted to win. Aren't they beautiful?

Here's my block - 

I'll be sure to share a photo of my finished project.

Happy crafting,

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Tell Me Tuesday #1

Today I'm starting a new feature called Tell Me Tuesday. It gets boring just writing about myself and my sewing. I want to hear about you, so please, please, please pretty please leave a comment with your answer to my fascinating question.

What are you planning to do this Friday after Thanksgiving (a.k.a. Black Friday)?

Tomorrow I'm flying to Portland, Oregon with my daughter, Gwen, to visit my mom and celebrate her milestone birthday (which is on Friday). I would tell you how old she is but she might not like that ;) We're having dinner at The Chart House with her friends that night, but I'm not sure what we'll do during the day. Probably not shopping (unless we just happen to drive by a fabric store, of course!!). I haven't seen my mom in about 18 months, so whatever we do and wherever we go is fine with me.

Finally, a shameless plug for my Etsy shop. I've been listing items all week in preparation for heavy shopping days. I've got bunting banners, mini quilts, pin cushions, and more. Please check it out if you have time and spread the word. I'm offering 15% off for the next 5 days. Simply enter BLOGNOV2011 upon check out.

Table runner available at my Etsy shop

I can't wait to hear about your Friday plans or special traditions! Don't forget to leave a comment.

Happy crafting,


Sunday, October 30, 2011

Tiny Pillows

While the rest of the world is busy getting ready for Halloween, I've been busy, busy getting ready for my craft show on November 12th. I made 100 feet of bias binding this week (for bunting banners), but needed a little break from that madness, so yesterday I switched to making pin cushions instead.

There's something so satisfying about making itty bitty things. I have a million tasks on my to-do list today - grocery shopping, pumpkin carving, bias binding making (aack!) - but all I really want to do is make tiny pillows.

Happy crafting,

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

W.I.P. Wednesday #5

Bunting banners!
Happy W.I.P. Wednesday! What are you working on this week?

Reality has finally sunk in. I'm doing my one and only craft sale of the season, Handmade Arts from the Heart, on November 12th and that's like super close!! I, ahem, just started sewing for it this week. This week will be all about bunting banners. My goal is to have 20 ready for the sale. Four done, sixteen to go. No sweat...

Happy sewing!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Long time no see

Hello dear blogosphere friends. I've missed you! How have you been? Are you working on Halloween costumes? Making holiday crafts? I'd love to hear what you're working on.

Last time I posted I was working fiendishly and feverishly on my Modern Quilt Guild Kaufman Kona Challenge. And then, a real fever struck. One day before the official reveal date of our Minneapolis guild's projects, I woke up with a nasty sore throat. A fever followed a few hours later and by noon I had a positive strep test to confirm my fears. So, the quilt did not get finished. I didn't attend the meeting, either, despite so looking forward to it :(

Here's a little peek at my Kona Challenge quilt:

The photo are very dark, but that's for the best because it hides a little problem.  I used Kona navy as my solid but ran out (another lesson - figure out how much fabric you need before you start sewing/piecing!). I went back to the store where I bought the navy, knowing I wanted the navy off the same bolt so the color would be the same. No luck. There was hardly any left on the bolt. So I drove 40 minutes to another chain store (to remain unnamed) to find more navy. They had the 4 yards that I needed and it looked the same as my original when I was in the store, but when I started piecing it was very clear that they were not from the same dye lot. Aaargh. Deep breath, let it go.

Egads!! My navy fabric doesn't match
 This quilt has been a good lesson for me to roll with it. Not everything has to be perfect. At least that's what I keep telling myself. Besides, it's for the boys to use and abuse. I hope it gets lots of love. And you know, I'm pretty darn proud of making a twin size quilt with half (!) of a charm pack.

I've also been working on a Halloween costume for my daughter, Gwen. She's 2 1/2 and has requested to be a princess. Amazing, isn't it? Are girls hardwired this way??? Secretly, I've had a blast making her costume - please don't tell. I'm surrounded by sparkly pink fabric and I love it. So far I've made a layered tulle skirt and a puffy sleeved top.

4 yards of tulle on a 2 year old. Trimmed out in Midori "Tourmaline" velvet ribbon!

This skirt makes a girl dance.

Pink sparkly top to be worn with pink long-sleeved top below.
Gwen will wear a pink shirt under the sparkly magenta puffy sleeved tee I made. A pink silk satin ribbon sash with complete the look. And yes, leggings are a must. Time permitting, I might even make her a robe/cloak with a fake ermine collar. My dear son Alex, 8, pointed out that she doesn't have a tiara. Better get right on it. Yes, I've gone bananas.

Until next time...

Sunday, October 9, 2011

(Road) Blocks

Did you read my post about the Marimekko print that got away? I still don't own any vintage fabric happiness, but I did score a dining room table and chairs this past week! The table is solid teak, made in Denmark, and weighs about 10,000 pounds. It's lovely.

And what are those pinwheels, you ask? That's my Robert Kaufman Kona challenge in progress.

A minor miracle will be required for me to finish this quilt by Thursday.  I was planning to sew all weekend, but sadly, my daughter developed a high fever out of nowhere (104.1 last night). Today is all about snuggling and taking care of my girl - quilting will have to wait. Whether I finish my quilt or not, I'm very excited to see what the other Minneapolis Modern Quilt Guild members have made with their charm packs!

Happy sewing,