Archive for the ‘Cool Ideas’ Category

NeedleTravel – Great App!

Thursday, July 3rd, 2014

Yesterday brought some down time and I was finally able to load a few apps into my phone and explore them.

One that wasn’t on my list to load but I stumbled across is NeedleTravel.

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This app tells you of shops near your location.  But not just quilt shops.  Shops of any of the needlearts, so embroidery, needlepoint, knit & crochet.

Yes fiber friends this app rocks.

Here’s what my neck of the woods looks like.

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And when I click on a dot or pin (I am guessing the pins paid more to be included) a page such as this pops up.

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With all the travel I do I think this app is going to be used many many times.

Emily is here visiting to Saturday afternoon.  We discovered that Amazon Prime has just added the last season of Downton Abbey to it’s service and since I only saw four episodes (before travel took over) and Em only saw two we are going to binge watch the season over the next few days together.  And just relax, talk and laugh.

I so love The Dowager…she and I would most definately get along.  Dry wit rules…toss in a spot of sarcasm and life is good.

While watching I will work some more on my latest EPP project.

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No name yet.  Loving the combination of 1″hexies and jewel shapes. The solids are an array of very light pastel solids to give the overall design some “twinkle” and depth. This quilt may take a few years of off and on work but it will get done.  Loving it.

Happy July 4th!
Mickey

Why YES we are 12!

Friday, February 14th, 2014

Happy Valentines Day!

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Yesterday I finally got around to looking at an invitation I received via Facebook to an event.  I get a good number of these and fess up that most go the wayside with just a glance but this one caught my eye as it was sent by a friend and the title included the word SNOW!

20140213_150246.jpegAIt was a Snow Angel Party!  Basically make a snow angel, take a pic and post it on facebook on February 14th.  The idea is to flood it with pics of snow angels.  And given the weather most of us have had this winter there is ample opportunity.   I quickly sent Paul a text at work and he was all in too.  A plan was hatched. As soon as he got home we would meet in the yard to make our angels.   If we hurried the daylight would be just right so we could snap pics.

20140213_150300.jpegCWe decided to forgo the heavy winter jackets so that our angels would have some waistline….lol.

We chose the back yard vs the front for the virgin snow that we had.  Our mailman walks our route and he tromps right across the front yard (yes thru knee deep snow vs the shoveled sidewalk) and when your front yard is the size of a postage stamp…well you get the picture.

Molly ran out with me to greet Paul in the yard.   But she took one look at the snow, shook her head, and headed back to the side door.  There would be no “Molly Angel”.

20140213_150254BPaul’s smile says it all.  Why yes we are 12!  Let’s go!

The snow is deep. SnowAngelD

And he’s down!Snow Angel EAngel making begins…sweep those arms and legs!

A back full of snow means success.

Snow Angel F

My turn. Snow Angel G

Angels in the snow. Snow Angel H

We had a blast!   Thanks Kelly for the invite and giving yesterday a fun activity that had us giggling like schoolkids.

Today I am sewing all day.  A new Castle rock block will be in the mix as I watch some midday curling.   Just a reminder the introductory special price of $20 for any of the Castle Rock collections expires tonight at midnight.    You will find the Inklingo button on the side bar to get you to the site!   Join me for a year of handpiecing.    If you are new to the blog you can search out the word inklingo in my blog search to find previous posts on Castle Wall.    Jump in with us….the snow…err hand piecing is fine.  😀

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Enjoy your day,

MickeySignature

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My New Favorite Tool

Thursday, November 21st, 2013

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A few weeks ago a friend of mine showed me this wonderful little needle caddy.

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It’s a little donut shaped contraption made by Clover that you can load threaded needles into for storage. This makes for easy access when you’re on the road sewing or late at night when your eyes are tired and you don’t wish to thread a very fine needle with silk thread.

You thread your needle as you would normally but you do not put a knot at the end of it. You load your threaded needle into a slot pushing it totally in.  Then you twirl the center ring and this raps the thread so nothing becomes tangled. It holds 10 threaded needles…that’s a lot of sewing time!

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There is a clear little cover so everything is wrapped up nice and tight ready to pop in your pocket or pop into your sewing box for a road trip.   Or just to sit by your favorite chair ready for some relaxation evening sewing.

When you are in need of a threaded needle you just gently pull it out and the thread unfurls and away you go ready to sew.

I absolutely love this little threaded needle holder.

…I ordered a bunch so watch for a few to show up in the 10 DAYS OF SWAG Giveaway that starts on December 6!

Off to Raleigh in a bit!  Capital Quilters here I come!
Mickey

Posted on the whim of my phone. 🙂

Rollin out of Home Depot with this!

Friday, September 6th, 2013

I’ve been doing a lot of errand running lately.   It just seems the days are filled with stopping here and there.

I really want to be in my studio as the new project I am working on has me so psyched up I was sewing to 2:30am last night.

Soon I can share.

Very soon.

But while out and about doing the aforementioned errands a stop to Home Depot was on the list.

Actually stops to Home Depot are ALWAYS on the list but that is another story.

This stop had me in the general hardware department to purchase some brand new hand clips to hang the benefit quilt at the Brews4Drew event this weekend.

While walking to the clips I spotted this new and nifty tool cart.  Well new to me.

Sept6-2LOOK at how it cantilevers out!  And I know I can get my featherweight in the bottom container.

Sept6-1 copyAnd it’s on wheels with it’s own luggage-like handle!

I am loving this.

And I have a whole bunch of driving gigs on the schedule next year.  This would be perfect for moving all my “stuff” into a hotel room in one fell swoop.

Or how about for retreats. Or day sewing with a friend.

I do believe I will be back for one.

But there is gonna be some embellishing.   Basic black doesn’t not work for me.

It was $80.  I see a lot of Christmas list potential.

 

MickeySignature

The Great Stash Bust!

Sunday, August 25th, 2013

I spent the last two days in the studio cleaning up.

This meant I put away all the fabric I used in the next book.  I had been stacking all the used fabric pieces in a special bin…well bins by the time I was done.  So that I could guarantee that a fabric would only be used once during the making of all 84 commercial fabric samples for the next Pieced Hexies Book.  Each sample uses a minimum of 4 fabrics, with some designs up to 6 fabrics….so you can see a whole lot of fabrics were used.

So the goal was to straighten up everything.  Shoehorn all the fabric back into the appropriate bins.  And take a deep breath.  And sew.

While shoehorning I ran across some old friends which have lived in the fabric neighborhood for years.

It is time to move them out of the stash and into a quilt.

First group to be removed.  The hand marbled fabrics.

This collection has not been touched in 10 years minimum.  Time to take action.

 

 

 

 

 

I started by cutting the pieces into 2.5” strips.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then I remembered the huge pile of black kona “odds–n-ends” left over from all the backings of the samples.

 

Guess what!?!  These fabrics are going to land up as some crazy 9 patches….maybe to go on to live as Sisters Choice blocks…or something else.

But it’s happening!  That marbled stash is beautiful..it needs to live in a quilt for all to see!

I challenge you to take a good look at your stash and find the hidden treasure that you have held on to for ages and cut if up and start to “move it out”!.

There is more.

This is the Civil War and 30’s stash.  They are up next for “moving out”.

 

 

And then it’s on to this stash.

 

This is gonna take awhile.

MickeySignature

eBay Goodies!

Saturday, August 10th, 2013

271192556541_2One of my newest fav sellers on eBay is myvintagelife.

They scan vintage images at a high dpi and print them out on high quality fabric for use in any project you can image.

I have bought a few of these images on fabric blocks lately and have grand plans for all kinds of pillow goodness.  I can add some small quilt blocks, borders, half square triangle around the images, make a back and viola quick project-instant gratification!

 

I will blog more about the pillows in the making when I do so (tenatively penciled in for late August early September…subject to change) but I just had to share this vendor with all you.

Some of the many images available.

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      Yes I have this one.

 

 

And this one too.

 

 

 

mM-o_C57j-Li2ut_IA5WfvAAnd this one…I am thinking this just image might be pieced into every quilt back of my quilts.

I am loving this idea.

Go check out this vendor. 

Let me know what images you bought.   Smile

 

MickeySignature

What’s that box about?

Thursday, August 8th, 2013

You may of noticed the box in the upper right hand of my blog.   The one that says “This blog received Gold Star from The Quilt Pattern Magazine.   What’s that you ask?

The Quilt Pattern Magazine is a new electronic based quilt magazine.

SideBanner2It is chock full of everything love and find in our traditional mail delivery quilt magazines except it isn’t mailed.

And this techie quilting chick on the go likes that. I like that I can download it to my laptop and open it up and read.  And if an ad catches my eye, or a blog link (a la my blog mention) I can just click and instantly I am there on the website or blog checking it out.

If I want to print a pattern…no prob.   Yes you are using your printer and ink.  But there is the “print in gray scale option” and truly in the long run the saving of space and convenience makes me happy.

CM-GoldenRatioTreeSkirtThis is just a sample of the fantastic patterns I am seeing.

And articles about EQ and quilt photography.  So it is more than just patterns.  But there are so many patterns!!

A subscription is just $14.99 for 12 issues (or 13 if you sign up now and take advantage of their Baker’s Dozen special)

Tell them I sent you!  And maybe we can meet up I the chat room sometime soon!

Enjoy the day,

MickeySignature

I’m a tea drinker!

Thursday, July 11th, 2013

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No I haven’t given up my coffee habit.  The Keurig still churns out a few cups a day here.

But over the last few years I have begun to drink more and more tea.

I blame Paul.

 

 

logo94And this awesome and quaint loose tea shop in Glen Falls, NY. 

SensilbilitiesTeaIt is called SensibiliTeas.   And if you click on the name you will go right to the website.  My friend Donna runs the shop (and she quilts!  she is awesome too).

They just moved into a new location and Donna has posted these pics on the Tea Shop’s facebook page.  If you ask me it screams sit down let me poor you a cup and let’s chat.  Someday I promise myself I well see it in person.

Now this piece of info might shake Donna to the core…but well…we make a lot of the loose tea as cold iced tea throughout the year.   Some of the teas she actually gives instructions to do so but we are brave and run rampant in our exploration and play with her wonderful blends.

SensilbilitiesTea2shhhhh…..We have even been known to really go crazy and toss a little bit of blackberry tea into the remaining raspberry tea for our own blend.

Anyway if you are tea drinker and even if your not in the Glen Falls, NY area check out the website.  It is so full of special blends you won’t know where to start. I have so help for you about that in a bit.

I have also found the “Other Cool Uses for Teas” page (click on the About Tea tab) really interesting.

Oh and Paul and I recommend the following:

Caribbean Cooler (excellent iced!)

Mango Green

White Pear

Birthday Wishes (I love this hot when I need some cheer)

and the Chez Depre all time favorite : APRICOT ALLURE  (both hot and cold…all year round…all the time!)

teacupsfoundationpiecedTea and Quilting….a match made in heaven!

 

Enjoy your day!

MickeySignature

A Suitcase Bed for Molly

Saturday, March 2nd, 2013

Catchy title huh?  Well I figured you waited around long enough for another blog I might as well get straight to the point.

In the span of the last few weeks besides all the other normal chaos of life at Chez Depre, we, as in Paul and I, decided and moved our bedroom into the “big room” in the house.

We have lived at this abode for 23 years (in April) and have never slept in what is normally considered to the master bedroom.  But this circumstance is a story for another blog.

Obviously with the “big room” we reaped extra space and thus decided to step up Molly’s sleeping arrangement too.

We made her a suitcase bed.

Basic Supplies:

Funky Suitcase (had that already!)

Foam (had that too!)

Fiberfill (yep you know it)

a Yard of fleece (went shopping)

wooden feet for suitcase (more about those    later)

various tools shown (Paul had those)

 

 

As you can see Molly was anxious to get started.

 

First up.  I had this thinner foam from a long ago UFO project that I decided to give up and “frankenstein” the materials back into the stash.  If this wasn’t in my studio already I most likely would buy a 3” thick piece of foam to fit the suitcase bottom.   But I just stacked up 4 pieces to create the base cushion.  

 

 

We opted to use wooded shower pole hangers as the feet for Molly’s bed due to her short stature.  The holders could be painted (a deep chocolate brown) and were relatively inexpensive. Three dollars for all four.

Paul predrilled holes in the suitcase corners, the attached the holder/feet. We put a sticky furniture pad on the bottom of each to protect our floors from the screw head.

 

 

 

 

A metal plate was attached to make sure the suitcase lid never  closes.

 

 

Before I could get a pic to describe the step of making a simple pillow out of scrap fabric and lightly filling with stuffing, place pillow on top of foam and tuck in your fleece on all sides (makes for easy washing) someone jumped up on her new bed.

 

We do believe she smiled.

 

 

 

…and then she asked for her blankie and went to sleep.

 

We think she likes it.

After the pain meds have cleared…

Thursday, December 1st, 2011

My post on November 15th was not to be my last prior to surgery…but as things happen someone had other plans.  Two trips to the emergency room and approximately 48 hours later I was being wheeled in for emergency surgery about midnight on Friday.  So how did you spend your Friday night? LOL

Now just one day shy of two weeks recovery under my belt and I feel awesome.   Just need to give the incision some time to heal and I will be “all good”.

The week of Thanksgiving is a blur, obviously, I was so doped up I think I saw the kids.  No just kidding YES the kids came home for five days.  It was the best medicine this Mom could receive.  And now I am just counting the days to Christmas break.

I am on strict “best rest” orders so I have been hexing…..ALOT.  And didn’t wish to post yet another “hexing” post.  So I looked around a few days ago when the pain pill fog began to lift for a simple project to share.  

A fellow blogger, Passing Down Crazy, shared her verisions of the Aneome Hat on her blog and I showed it to Paul (this is prior surgery).  He wanted this hat and asked for it in Blackhawk colors.  So a quick trip to the yarn shop and I chose Cascade Handpaints 220 in the red/black colorway.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It is a very quick knit. Took me three days…but remember I was a bit unfocused…so in real life I would say an experienced knitter could whip this out in two evenings….there is still time for Christmas!

I know there will be a few more of these in my life…so expect other versions to pop up.

 

 

As you may imagine…Paul and I own a lot of artwork.  We are always buying new pictures, photography, paintings, mixed media.  And displaying this work and being able to switch it out easily say every month has been a bit of a problem. 

But…..

During Emily’s time home a friend posted to her Facebook wall a great idea she found on Pinterest for displaying artwork without putting any holes in walls (rental housing) or tape/adhesive on artwork.  I love the idea and yesterday when I went on a “field trip” with Paul we stopped at Bed, Bath & Beyond to buy the necessary pant hangers.  

The original idea was to use this type of hanger ($6.99 for 4)  to clasp artwork.  

 

 

 

I found these hangers in the clearance area for 1.99 for 7 (WOWsers!) and thought the additional hardware would look cool…plus the hanger itself was bigger. Note the clips do have a rubber grip in them so no artwork is harmed.

 

 

I think I may buy some mat board and place the artwork on the mats and then hang to display to give even more impact.  But that will have to wait most likely to after the holidays as I was accidentally bumped in the store and I don’t want to risk that again.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So for now I sit on the loveseat, hexing, reading, knitting away.  When I stumble upon something I think you may be interested in I will blog.  And I promise to longtime readers to get a picture of Paul and Emily at Christmas….I myself can’t believe how grown up they have become.

Enjoy your day,

Mickey