Hello October!

Can you believe it’s October already? I swear that just yesterday it was March. I cannot believe how quickly this year has gone, but then again, I think I say that every year at about this time. To really put things in perspective, I just checked and there are only another 12 weeks until Christmas. Ugh. Excuse me while I have a minor panic attack over that fact.

Anyway… seeing as it is October and one of my favorite times of year, I thought I’d share a few pictures with you all to show you what I was up to over the weekend to really get into the Halloween spirit :o)

As much as I love Halloween, I’m ashamed to say that unlike Christmas, my Halloween decorations are rather meager. In fact, they consist of a black glittery sign that says “Creepy” and a wooden block that says “Eek.” Pretty lame, right? So I decided that this year it was time I gussied things up a little and got with the Halloween spirit. Because I am me, and I can’t ever do anything the easy way, I figured I would bust out the sewing machine and craft a little holiday cheer.


Something is taking shape here, but what could it be?


Oh! It’s a cushion cover :o)


Close up.


I fell in love with this fabric as soon as I saw it and knew it would make the perfect backing for one of my Halloween cushions. At some point I’m going to hunt down some more so I can make something entirely out of this print <3


Work started on a second cushion cover, and would have been completed if I hadn’t failed in my calculations of how much of the white and orange polka dot fabric I had on hand. D’oh! So, that little project is currently on hold until more fabric arrives. Grr.


I also decided to do a little selfless sewing last week and made a coffee cozy for a dear friend of mine. Leslie is a real gem – I’ve worked with her for the past 5 years on our company’s annual convention, she has been a beta reader for both of the Riley Cray novels, and she was recently a bridesmaid in my wedding. I can’t say enough how much this woman rocks, and how much I treasure her friendship.

A suitably funky button for a wonderfully funky lady. Besides, I couldn’t resist the wee deer! So darling!


The coffee cozy complete with a new mug and a little something to help fill it with caffeinated goodness ;o)

And of course, as always, I had my trusty assistants close at hand to keep an eye on things…


Miss Samantha watched both me and the outside world from her perch beside the door.


Severus lorded over all from atop my sewing box, which seems to be one of his favorite places to sit whenever I’m at the sewing machine.


As usual, when Silas wasn’t personally inspecting everything by laying his fuzzy ass on it he was wedging himself into one of my baskets for a nap.


Even the elusive Viktor briefly came out of hiding to supervise for a while. Only Lucius, my other grey boy seemed uninterested in what I was doing and spent all day sleeping on the couch. Lazy bugger.

Crafty Distractions

Hump Day!

Happy hump day ghouls and boys!

If you’ve spent any time lurking around my blog you know that I suffer from a serious case of ADOS (Attention Deficit… Ooh Shiny!), and occasionally like to take a little break from writing to explore some of my other creative outlets. Shortly before I got struck down with the plague (pink eye followed by pneumonia) a couple weeks ago I was in the midst of one such spell of needing some distraction. This latest need to spend some time being crafty was the result of receiving a truly amazing new sewing machine from my parents for my birthday at the end of January. Due to a particularly nasty bout of carpal tunnel and the need to focus on the next Riley short story I hadn’t yet had the chance to sit down with my new lovely and try her out. After taking a trip to the local quilt store with my mum one Saturday afternoon I decided it was time I finally tried out the new machine.

Babylock1 Babylock2

Isn’t she pretty? I think I shall call her Kaylee after my favorite Firefly character (we already named our car Inara).

Armed with a stack of beautiful yellow and grey fat quarters I whipped up this darling quilt top in an afternoon…

Yellow and Grey Herringbone Quilt

… and then had to put finishing it on hold when I was struck down with pink eye the very next day. So not fair. Grr.

I didn’t get the chance to revisit my herringbone quilt until last week when I was slowly easing back into the flow of things after coming home from the hospital. Thanks to the antibiotics the docs gave me I felt almost back to normal surprisingly fast but still found myself getting tired very quickly. So, right now this particular project is currently sitting with the quilting a little over 1/2 way done, and awaiting its binding.

As much as I adore the yellow and grey quilt and can’t wait to have it on display, it’s a little too small for snuggling with on the couch so I was already contemplating my next quilt project when I received a gorgeous bundle of fabric I had scored at a serious discount. I wasn’t quite feeling up to wrestling the herringbone quilt through the machine to finish up the quilting, and decided to turn my attention to figuring out what to do with my latest score from the mail fairy.

LuminescenceStack

I couldn’t resist the mix of colors and patterns (which just happen to be the same color scheme as our upcoming wedding).

LuminescenceSquares

After several hours of cutting I had a lot of squares… (there’s 320 4″ squares in total)

LuminescencePlusQuilt

It’s slowly coming together. Only 11 more rows to go. Oi vey.

Surprisingly I’ve only got one row (so far) that has a couple of squares backwards that need to be fixed before I start sewing all the rows together.

And I’m glad to say I’ve also recharged my writing batteries and am once again going gang-busters on Unleashed and Welcome to the Asylum, so stay tuned for more updates!

‘Tis The Season Of Crafting

As many people who know me can attest I’m a very crafty person, and more than a little ADD at times, which is why my list of hobbies is fairly long. Writing, of course, is my greatest love, but anything sewing related comes in as a close second. 2013 saw me suffering from a pretty severe case of the quilting bug, and while I focused most of my attention on writing throughout 2014, I still cultivated my love for all things sewing. In November I decided to take up embroidery (something I haven’t done since I was about eight years old), and made a couple Christmas gifts for family.

Stocking_kevin
My first crafty item on the list was making Christmas stockings for Mr. Awesome Sauce, one of our kitties and myself. Our other cats already had stockings I’d bought years ago, but somehow the rest of us were severely lacking in the stocking department.

ElfLove
I made this little elf couple for Mr. Awesome Sauce’s dad and his wife. I wasn’t sure what to do with the finished piece and ended up just framing it in an embroidery hoop so they can hang it on the wall.

ChristmasCushion_both
The most labor intensive embroidery pieces I did this year were this set of Christmas cushions I made for my mum. That Santa took forever. In the end though, it was totally worth all the time spent working on it, and my mum absolutely loved them. For anyone interested, I get all of my embroidery patterns from Urban Threads. They have an amazing selection of designs in dozens of categories and themes.

Some of my other Christmas crafts included a set of potholders and coordinating oven mitt for my mum:
Potholders_mum

And another set for Mr. Awesome Sauce’s mom:
Potholders_mom

More sewing fun was had making a set of reversible placemats and matching napkins for my mum:
Placemats_mum

And a set of reversible placemats for my sister-in-law:
Placemats_heidi

Our final Christmas craftiness didn’t include any sewing, but involved a pretty cool (and easy!) method for creating personalized mugs. We made mugs for several friends and family members, but I only managed to get pictures of the ones we made for Mr. Awesome Sauce’s mom and his uncle:
Mugs

After all this crafting you’d think I’d want to swear off sewing for a while, right? Wrong. I’ve been playing around with paper-pieced hexagons:
HexieLove
I’m thinking that these will eventually be made into a table runner, maybe as a gift for my mum next Christmas.

And finally, I just finished making a pair of wee little bunnies for my beautiful twin nieces who are turning 2 in a few days. I made them using this awesome pattern, and have plans to make them some more clothes and friends in the future using the other patterns available on the site.
TwinBunnies