December 31, 2013

Disappearing 4-Patch Tutorial - Attack Your Scraps

I'm not gonna lie, I've been in a funk for quite some time now, months really. You would think that spending so much time with family over all the holidays would've helped pull me out of it. I have been so very blessed to spend a lot of time with family lately!!

Truth be told, I was simply on a medication to help manage nerve pain and it turned me into a Zombie. I'm thinking I'll just have an advantage when the Zombie Apocalypse comes. Hahaha....

Today was the very first time I've woken up at 5am and gotten out of bed (for something other than just to pee) since about August. When you have 5 kids that's usually one of the only times you have to sew: when the little people sleep.

I wanted to play with something simply, but that would also have an awesome end product. I think I hit the nail on the head!

This is simply a version of a disappearing 4-patch:

Being lazy, uhh I mean being productive to use leftover 5 inch charm squares, I ended up with an 8 inch block.

I love how it turned out!

Want to make some?? It's super super easy, I mean 5 am easy.

Start with a 4 patch, or two if you're going for super scrappy:

Using your ruler, cut 1 inch from the center 4 times. After I cut the first time, I just turned my mat (or ruler) and cut the next one, etc. It was very very helpful to have a small mat to cut on & rotate. Like so:

Swap around the parts however you like. For example:

Before swap:

After swap:

I picked up the triangle parts in the middle of the sides and swapped those between the 2 blocks. Then I grabbed the center piece, turned it 180 degrees, and swapped it between blocks also. (I love love how they turned out.)

Then sew and press and ta-da!

See, SUPER easy!! And, you can start with any size squares for the 4 patch, you'll just end up with a different size finished block. Can we say pre-cut AND scrap friendly! Oh Yea!

One of the reasons I find scrappy quilts so cool is the juxtaposition of modern prints next to vintage-y florals and such, like that green log print next to the brown floral. I just love it!

Edited to add:  I would LOVE to see any blocks/projects you create with this tutorial! Feel free to join & share in my Flickr group: Your Lyanna Jean Designs.

December 5, 2013

Oh, Emmaline

Have you seen the Emmaline apron??

This has got to be one of the absolute cutest aprons out there!

I joined a holiday apron swap, so of course I had to get a new apron pattern. Well, I actually ended up with 2 new patterns. I bought the Emmaline and the Gathering aprons from Sew Liberated.

There was so much lovely Christmas fabric to choose from, I had a very hard time picking only 2 prints, so I ended up making 2 Emmaline aprons.

I already have a fabric picked out to make myself a Gathering apron this spring. I'm quite excited!

The best part about the Emmaline apron was that the pattern was printed on regular paper, none of that lightweight tissue yuck! I was a little sad to discover that the gathering apron was printed on tissue type paper, super sad face.

The two Emmaline's worked up really quickly. The worst part was all the pressing of the washed fabric, I'm not a fan of ironing (kinda funny that I love to sew/quilt but really don't like ironing).

I'm really loving all these quick projects that I've been getting done this year in between the quilts I've been working on. Makes me feel all productive ;)

Honestly, I'm a little gaga over the Clara Dress. Maybe I just need one of those too....

What's your favorite apron pattern?

November 13, 2013

Peanut Butter & Honey Granola Recipe

This is my absolute most favorite granola recipe. I've been tweaking it for a few years now, and finally I LOVE IT! Naturally, I just had to share.

It's nice that it is also gluten free and dairy free. Even though I eat gluten and dairy, it's really nice to have a yummy treat I can can gift to just about anyone! Well, anyone except people with nut allergies.

 3    Cups Rolled Oats
 1/2 Cup Almonds (I use sliced/shaved)
 1/2 Cup Sunflower Seeds or Pumpkin Seeds (Pepitas are the best!)
 2/3 Cup Coconut Flakes
 1/2 Cup Puffed Rice
 2/3 Cup Honey
 1/3 Cup Oil
 2/3 Cup Peanut Butter

Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.

Mix dry ingredients in large bowl. Mix wet ingredients (last 3) separately, then mix into dry ingredients.

Spread on a greased cookie sheet and bake 20-30 minutes (until golden). Enjoy!

It's great with just about anything- yogurt, ice cream, or even all by itself!

November 11, 2013

Double Sized Bargello - FINISHED!

This beauty has been mostly done for a little while now, but since it was a gift I just had to wait to post about it. I absolutely love giving a homemade gift!!

I followed the Bargello pattern in the book 'Stash-Buster Quilts' by Lynne Edwards, but did some adjusting. I doubled the width and length of each piece/row in the quilt, so ended up with less blocks and a different final dimension. For my first bargello, I quite like it!

This book is pretty cool, I originally bought it just for the Japanese Folded Patchwork Bag pattern, it's an amazing looking bag (still need to make one).

The top for this was put together when I was on the retreat back in September. It was done in 2 days! A new record! And who doesn't love a good scrappy stripe through the back??

Also, I did the quilting with both red and grey thread, doing the red on the prints with red and the grey on the prints with white/black. I really really like how it turned out, I'm definitely doing it again!

November 8, 2013

Open Wide Zipper Pouches

I have been on a small projects kick lately, well mostly I guess.

My oldest just turned 11, and she had a sleepover party. The girls that came were awesome, I love that all my kids have such great friends! We went to watch the new Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs 2 movie, it was good. I would love some idea pants, hahaha.

So, I decided that instead of buying some plastic bags, or whatever else I found to put their stuff in, I would make some zipper pouches. I used the open wide zipper pouch tutorial from Noodlehead.

Now, I have had a few bumps along the way with my pouches, but this one was a piece of cake to make!

I ended up making 6 of these open wide zipper pouches, they went together quick! I even tried a new free motion quilting technique on them. It's a great project to test drive some new quilting since you don't have to quilt such large pieces.

The tutorial has lots of photos, and the way it is worded is great - very easy to follow!

This tutorial is definitely going into my 'favorites' section. What about you? Do you have a favorite pouch to make?

October 30, 2013

In September...

I went on my first quilt retreat, awesomeness!!

Sorry, not everyone is pictured.

I turned the big 30. Yea, it wasn't that big of a deal.

I made my first triple zip. Love it.

I finished my first mystery quilt. Took forever and a day.

I made my first purse, and hope to get the pattern together soon.

I went to find some family members.

I played lots with the cutest kids.

How has the beginning of your fall been??

September 16, 2013

Giveaway Winner & I think I'm in triple love...

Congrats to lucky Comment #3!! 

I wanna go on the retreat too....bummer

You have won the giveaway!! I will be contacting you within 24 hours to get your prize on it's way to you!

In other news... 


Yep, I'm in love... with this triple zip pouch

If you haven't made one, you need to. Just sayin. The tutorial is great, lots of pictures.

And the zippers ready aren't that bad if you remember this little trick: open your zipper and sew it in until you are about a half inch from where you left the tab, then put your needle down and lift up your machine foot, then just zip the zipper shut and continue to sew the rest of the way down. Tada! No more wavy seams next to your zippers. 

Sadly, this triple zip and thread catcher was a gift for a friend. So, there are just a few more of these that need to be made from some of favorite fabrics! (wink wink)

I think the best thing about this zip is it's sturdy. It uses fusible fleece (one of my new favorite things!), and it's just so squishy!
One of the best parts about making one is that you can share your triple goodness on The Quilting with a Quilter's Table Flickr group!

September 2, 2013

'Is it a big year?' Giveaway

What did you do on the last weekend you were in your 20s?

Was it awe inspiring? Was it awesome craziness??

Want to know what I'm doing the weekend before I turn 30??

I'm going on my first quilt retreat!! (I know... my exciting life, hahaha)

Seriously though, I'm way excited. I get a 3 day weekend that I get to sleep and wake up when I want. If I skip a meal it's no biggie. And best of all, I just get to do what I want (which in my world means I get to take a nap if I want, whenever!).

In honor of my getting older, and going on my very first quilt retreat, I'm doing a giveaway:

- 250m Guttermann Thread, color
- 40 charm squares (5inch)
- 22 3inch charm squares
- 1 1/2 yard fabric
- 1 package Warm & White craft size

I know, nothing to die for, but if you love a good ROY G BIV project or even if you just love precuts this is for you!

Standard entries:
-Follow my blog
-Like my page on Facebook
-Follow me on Pinterest
-Spread the word

Put a separate comment for each entry and will do the rest.

Giveaway ends on September 13th at 11:59pm. Winner will be announced and emailed September 14th.

Open worldwide, but anyone out of the continental US pays for their own shipping.

Good luck!

Finished the Mystery Top

After having this quilt top as my 'Lovely Year of Finishes' goal for the last 3 months, I am SO happy to say that it's done!!!

There was a border in the pattern, but I really like how it looks now.

I had debated doing a quilt-as-you-go (QAYG) type method and quilting each block before putting them together. Ha! What was I even thinking?! That would've taken this project to the next level of UFO. I mean, seriously??

On the other hand, I would've been able to do a lot more detailed quilting if I did do QAYG. Oh well, I'm sure it will still turn out nicely.

Quilting and binding will be October's goal, I think.

Still gotta figure out this month's goal. I have a couple gifts that need to be made, and my first quilt retreat (AHHH! So excited!). In other words, I'm not sure I'll get to a UFO this month.

What projects do you have lined up for this month?

August 19, 2013

Mystery Quilt Nightmare

Sadly, I have decided that Mystery Quilts are just not for me.

This cutting of 200 two-inch squares is for the birds.

I feel like I am doing the same exact thing over and over and over and over.

This pattern calls for about 96 - 1 1/2 in half square triangles, and about 100 rectangles with 2 inch squares sewn to both sides.

It's killing me!

I am determined to finish this quilt top this month!! It has, sadly, been my goal for my UFO challenge for the last 3 months. 3 MONTHS! It's like the weird family member that just keeps coming over, in my face. Geez.

This quilt just might get donated or gifted just so I won't have to look at it anymore, for my own sanity's sake.... 

On a good note, I have been using my Featherweight for the piecing. It almost hums when it's sewing. I love it, it's almost endearing. That thing is like a tank too, pretty sturdy stuff. (sorry for the phone picture)

Do you have a Featherweight? What do you love about it? Any books you would recommend I get?

August 5, 2013

Mini-Tent Success

There have been just a few small sewing projects that I've started and actually completed in the last month. Oh it feels great!!

My little nephew's quilt & bib, a new boxie (that I love), and this mini-tent have all been great distractions to quilting my big projects lately. Is it just me (having 5 kids home) or is it more difficult to have the gumption to quilt in the summer?

I found the pattern while schmoozing Pinterest, well I find a lot that way, but this was a project I just knew I had to make! Feel free to follow me, I pins tons of stuff (I think I have about 77 boards now... uhh yea).

The lovely Kerry at Kid Giddy shared this pattern for the Mini-Tent. So, go check it out and make some! The pattern was super easy, and lots of pictures!

This one was given to a family friend, and both of my older boys asked me at least 3 times if I was making it for them. I'm thinking I already have some Christmas presents figured out! (score!)

The only thing I did differently was that I did not cover the faucet connector with duct tape, I just used nail polish remover to get the ink off, then washed it like 5 times so it wouldn't smell. I liked the look of it without the tape.

And just incase you were wondering, a Build A Bear does fit inside. (not pictured)

August 2, 2013

'A Hero is Born'

One of my little brothers is having his first son! AHHH, so exciting!!


Naturally, he would just need a quilt from yours truly *huge grin*.

Thus, 'A Hero is Born' was made!

I liked the block design of the pattern 'At the Crossroads' in April 2010 issue of American Patchwork & Quilting magazine, so I just changed up the sashing and border a bit. I've never made a quilt from a magazine before, but it was pretty fun.

This is summer guys, there is not much designing going on in these parts with quilting, so I was relying on a good, easy, and quick pattern. This one came through for sure!

Here's the back.

I actually bought the print fabric like 4 years ago because it just screamed to me that I needed to make something for this brother out of it (it has fire trucks, helicopters, ambulances, and police cars).

You see, he is a volunteer fire fighter & EMT and I am a very proud big sister! He just so happened to get mixed up with another crazy fire fighter & EMT and fell in love!! (Again, so proud)

Since they are both All-American Heroes in my eyes, I am just going on a hunch here that yet another hero will be born.

His name is Mason. *huge grin, with tears*

Of course, he needed a matching bib!

Through this experience I realized that I LOVE making baby quilts for people!!!

August 1, 2013

10th Anniversary National Conference 2013

So, in my spare time I sell Thirty One products. Yes, I love them and I love what I do.

With that being said, I went to my first National Conference and it just so happened to be Thirty One's 10th Anniversary!! SO FUN!

My husband and I decided to fly out a day early to do some tourist-y stuff. It was the first time my husband and I flew anywhere together (in 8 years...). Apparently we're more home bodies than I thought.

There were so many people at conference... a little overwhelming at times. Can you find my husband??

We went to The World of Coca-Cola. My husband loves soda, and well I'm all about some Cherry Coke, so this was up our alley.

This place was very cool, lots and lots of eye candy!!

We also tried tons of different kinds of soda. The best one I tried was from Japan and had carrots in the photo, and the worst was one called 'Beverly' from Italy (SO GROSS).

I was soda-d out after trying so many flavors!

I also finished another preemie blanket my first day there. Nothing better than finishing a knitting project on vacation! There will be a pattern coming soon, it was super easy. Notice how it looks like another quilt block (similar to my 4 Square Preemie Knitted Blanket)? The thought has crossed my mind to do a whole bunch of 18inch knitted blocks that look like traditional quilt blocks. What do you think?

(Back to conference)

One of the best parts about conference was meeting some of the ladies I met while I was there!! New friends are the best!

Did you know that in Atlanta the fire hydrants are silver?? Yea, that's right, Silver!

We got back home this past Sunday, and all week we've been busy! I love summer and all the fun things I get to do with my family.

Just two nights ago my baby boy and I went out picking green beans, which was fantastic on it's own, but as I was handing them to him to put in the bowl he said 'thank you' just about every time. It was such an awesome experience!

Wow, sorry that was such a rambled up jumble of things, but that's kinda how this summer feels! I do have a few projects to share, and some goal setting to do, so hopefully there will be a little more time for blogging this week.

Happy trails!

July 23, 2013

Atlanta Bound with a New Boxie

I'm pretty excited, my husband and I are headed to Atlanta!

Today we're driving to my Dad's to drop off the kids (oh yea!), and tomorrow morning we're flying out. Now that I think about it, I don't think I've ever been on a plane with my husband, not that that's a big deal or anything, just a thought. (and a run on sentence, geez....)

Either way, I love going new places!!

We're traveling out there because it's Thirty One's National Conference, and it's the first one I'm going to. So very excited! I didn't go last year because I was only with the company for about 2 months and couldn't really justify it at that point. But this year it was almost a MUST!

And, what's a little traveling without some new digs??

I made this beauty to house my knitting project (I can't travel without a project - or 2).

Followed the (No Guts) Boxie Pouch Tutorial, and I loved it! I did make a few adjustments:
1) I used woven interfacing instead of lightweight. I like pouches with a little more umph. 
2) I cut the pieces for the tabs at 1 1/2 inches by 3 inches instead of 1 by 3. I wanted my tabs a little longer.

Did I mention that it's the perfect size for my knitting project!

I absolutely love it, and am most definitely making lots more. My oldest daughter has already made a request (requirement is more like it) that I make her one as well.

Most favorite part of this tutorial is that the inside is completely finished - NO unfinished seams!! The inside is so cute, I'm tempted to turn the whole thing inside out and take a picture.

We pulled these fabrics, they'd make some really cute Boxies don't you think?!

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