Wednesday, December 30, 2009

The Next Big Thing

So I have a few projects in the back of my mind...some of them I can post about, but some of them are my secrets until the person receiving them gets them. 

For now, here's an idea of what I'll be up to in the coming months:
  • This is such a great idea!  I'm going to make a few of these to keep in Helen (Nick and my van, for those of you who don't know).  I've got a whole lot of scraps lying around that I could use for straps.  Also, I love that this is a simple, cheap quilt to make for the next projects. 
  • On that note, is my new favorite site for inspiration. It's not a big one yet, but it's definitely a project I'm going to keep up with.  
  • Crafthope lead me to this site.  This girl is so adorable with her big ol' grin that it makes me want to find a shelter in my area that I can donate to.  I think I want to see if this place is someplace to donate to.  
  • Here is another site I'm going to keep track of.  
  • Jackpot!  Apparently someone wrote a book about this stuff...who knew. 
I like the idea of this site as well. Except that I want to make it my personal goal to make and give away 100 quilts before I'm 50. That's roughly 24 years to finish it...4ish quilts to give away a year.  Let me think about this one 

In any case, I've got some projects to work on.  Including my first baby blanket!  (This one's for a friend though, so it doesn't count for the give away challenge.) 

my number one fan

he never lays like this on my regular comforter. I mustve done something right :)

plaid rag in one piece

it's all sewn together! it's super heavy and so warm...I'm sleeping under it tonight and saving some oil money. :) still need to slip it and wash it, but it'll do for now!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

condensed layout

the rows are all done. now to sew them together...should be ready in time to take to nick's tomorrow to make him feel better. :) won't do the cutting or washing until my shipment of awesome christmas gifts gets here, since mom was awesome enough to get me a set of rag quilt clippers! :)

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Christmas Day - The Report for Everyone Following This

As I hoped, Mom loved the quilt. :-)  Here's the setup Christmas morning:


after.  If you can't see it (and haven't read the rest of the blog), the design is my own and is the sign-language sign for "I love you", which is something special in our family. 

The scavenger hunt was a success (I even managed to stump her a couple times!)  I'll post more pictures later...for now, it's bed time.  :-)

Friday, December 25, 2009

santa's coming!

t minus one more night of sleep until santa comes! I wanted you to pick my gift tonight, but it's better this way...I'm trying so so hard not to point out all the flaws, and nick even pulled me into your sewing room to read the "zip your lips" thing on your shelf. I think that's great. :)

anyways, this is likely the last entry before you get to see it. I hope I've managed to give you some idea of how much love I put into this for you. mom, you are an amazing woman. you are my hero and my best friend, and I am so inspired by you every single day. I am so glad I got to be your daughter. I love you so much! :) MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

driving back from port a

I feel like I've been holding my breath for weeks now...I'm gonna try to grab a couple more close-up pictures before we go see Avatar tonight, but it's so hard to even think about Friday without letting my poker face slip. you still have no idea, and I hope you don't think I've forgotten you this year. I hope you like's far from perfect, but there's a lot of love in that quilt. :)

Saturday, December 19, 2009

I can count the days left on one hand...

I'm packing up stuff to go to Texas!  I'll be there in less than 12 hours!  Your quilt is the reason I'm checking a bag this year...I won't be letting it out of my sight until I'm in Fair Oaks, so it's going in a duffel bag with me on the plane.  I bet you'll wonder why I needed so many bags.  Teehee.  6 more days though!  I can't wait!!!!! 

Tuesday, December 15, 2009


You gave me some "suggestions" last night for what I could get you for Christmas, if I hadn't thought of anything yet.  Eeeeexcellleennnntttt...that means you have NO idea what's coming!  :-D

In other news, Christmas is now on the 10 day forecast!!! 

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

martha stewart, eat your heart out

in an effort to start using this blog to track all my creative endeavors, here's the latest: our first christmas wreath!

23 days!!!!

That's three weeks from Friday!!!! 

I've been telling everyone how I feel SO bad because I know I've told you about everyone else's Christmas gifts, but I haven't even *hinted* at yours...I really hope that by now you feel better about that.  I hope you're not hurt even right now (Dec. 1, 2009), but I know there have been some lingering pauses in conversations that have made me cringe and slap my hand over my mouth.  You know me well enough to know that, if I went even one step down that path ("don't worry, your gift is way better") that I'd end up spoiling the whole thing entirely.  But believe me...half the gift is the fact that I'm pretty sure you have *no* idea what's coming! 

I've already got the whole gift-giving thing planned out, too...I'm going to take close-up pictures of everyday objects around your house (Jesse's nose might be one of them, hehe) and use those as "clues" for a scavenger hunt to lead you to the guest room, where the quilt will be laid out on the bed. 

I'm also not letting that quilt out of my in, it's coming with me on the plane.  It's simply not worth the risk to me, lol.  I'll sleep in the airport without a toothbrush before I'll let that thing out of my sight. 

Man, I can't wait!!!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Saturday, November 21, 2009

hidden gem!

I got this fabric because the colors are pretty...I wasn't so sure about the texture...until now!!! it turns out one side is fuzzier than the other...jackpot!

he loves flannel...

have I mentioned that? I'm a big fan of that fabric too. I got extra of it. :)

al borlen would be proud...

...I'm working on the rag quilt I'm making for nick's couch. I have I think 9 or 10 flavors of plaid here, all of which I just can't wait to wrap up in. I'm cutting them into 12x10 inch squares and then I'll count how many I have to see how big it'll be

official finish

I think with this, I'm going to call your quilt officially complete. can't wait for christmas!!!

made especially for you...

taadaa! like everything else, it's close but not perfect lol

33 days left...

I'm waiting for the iron to heat up so I can make a label for your quilt.  I'm using leftovers of the pink lining, with green thread to make a "Made especially for you by Kathryn LeBlanc" label for your quilt.  I feel like, given how many of your quilts had that (with your name, obviously) on it, it's only fitting that the one made *for* you should as well.  :-) 

I got a thank you note from you for the pj pants.  You told me I should keep a photo album of gifts I've made for people...little do you know.  :-)  It'd be cool to have physical pictures all in one place though.  I think I'm going to keep this blog going though, so I can keep notes on ideas and what worked and what didn't too.  Maybe after I give you the quilt, I'll even let you be a writer on here so you can contribute too if you want.  :-) 

Iron's ready.  I'll post pictures. 

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Not out of the woods yet...

Man...every time I talk to you, it gets harder not to tell you about your quilt (or any others I'm planning, since I don't want to give it away even a little bit).  I feel so bad, too!  I told you about the flag and the bag, and I can't even hint that I'm doing something WAY better for you!  IT'S KILLING ME!!!!  I hope you're not hurt that I wouldn't make something for you first...I really want to tell you, but it's only 35 days until Christmas.  ARRRRGGGGHHHHH

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Tuesday, November 17, 2009


...that's the piece I just cut out. like 5 minutes ago. sigh. at least he's upstairs.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

lone star

first panel of the boy's flag is done. I got WAY too much duck cloth for this lol

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The Texas State Flag

I've decided two things:
1. I'm going to keep this blog going even after Christmas, so you can keep up with whatever projects I'm working on (unless they're for you, then I'll keep them hidden :-P). I'll reset the permissions so anyone can see it.
2. I'm going to attempt to make The Boy a Texas flag for Christmas. This is the official description of the flag:

The Texas State Flag: "'The state flag consists of a rectangle with a width to length ratio of two to three containing: (1) a blue vertical stripe one-third the entire length of the flag wide, and two equal horizontal stripes, the upper stripe white, the lower red, each two-thirds the entire length of the flag long; and (2) a white, regular five-pointed star in the center of the blue stripe, oriented so that one point faces upward, and of such a size that the diameter of a circle passing through the five points of the star is equal to three-fourths the width of the blue stripe.'"

I think I want it to be pretty big (not huge, but big enough to hang on his wall). I'm thinking I'll make it 20-by-30 inches. That makes the stripes 20x10, and the star...something that I'll figure out later. :-)

Monday, November 9, 2009

Made It!!!

OMIGOSH Mom, you have NO idea how hard this weekend was!!  You guys came to visit, and we had a TOTAL blast...but all I could do was concentrate on NOT telling you about the quilt!  I did good though!  I hope you'll laugh when you read this, but all I was thinking all weekend was "I didn't get you a razor, Mom!"  :-D

Wednesday, November 4, 2009


So in review, I would have done the borders TOTALLY differently.  I'm going to try really hard not to point out all the little glitches and poor stitching, etc...I'm sure you'll find it on your own lol. 

My next project is going to be another secret project (well, secret from the recipient)...I'm going to make Mai a quilt for her high school graduation in June.  I've already started collecting black and white fabrics, and I'll be looking for a few deep red ones to throw in as well.  I'm thinking I'll just do basic squares...maybe 3x3s...with a couple of borders similar to the ones on your quilt, then red binding.

Also, I sort of want to try doing a quilt sort of like those puzzles you see where the whole picture is made up of hundreds of little pictures...I wonder how I could do that, and what I could use as pictures.  Hmmmm...

mas mas fin

wide view. it's 2 am on a work night, so I'm gonna go to bed. :)

mas fin

the backing...looks better from far lol


oh my's actually done...

small problem...

...I cut too much off when I was trimming the backing. crap. wish I could ask you how to fix that.

back border

pinning the borders to the backside

Monday, November 2, 2009

first border done!

I like it! it's subtle, but still pulls out the heart. I'll finish the rest later.

more border patrol

I don't know if there's a better way to do this, but I'm sewing the whole border down. this is still the first one, and I'm not 100% sure what to do at the corners, but I'm sure I'll figure it out.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

secrets secrets...

how sad is it that I'm packing up my sewing room to make it look like I have less fabric than I do, solely so you won't ask questions I'm dying to answer? sigh. also, this is a strategic angle because my dumb kitty was licking himself in the corner and wouldn't move. maybe it's better to have the fabric covered...

Thursday, October 22, 2009

first attempt at fashion

there is just an absurd amount of fabric here. I'm making dad some shorts (and you some pants) for when you guys come visit in 2 weeks. the pattern is air force jets. :D

Monday, October 12, 2009

impending doom

I think he thinks its a runway...

Pushing Buttons

I'm pretty sure it's against some kind of cardinal rule to sew buttons on quilts, espcially if the quilt's purpose is as a throw blanket. but I'm gonna do it anyways. so there.

Monday, October 5, 2009

I haven't forgotten, I promise!

It's been a crazy busy week and weekend, and I needed to work on something smaller for a bit to let my mind rest.  I'm still toying with ideas for what to do about the big open spaces that aren't quilted yet, and I need to do the binding...other than that, this thing is done!

I've been working on Grammom's bag.  It's been a fun project, and I think I might keep doing small stuff like that in my spare time.  I really need to finish the quilt and then focus on school though...maybe not in that order lol. 

Anyways, I haven't quit yet, and there will be more pictures when more are ready.  You're coming to visit in a month or so, so I'm kind of hoping to have it done by then so it's easy to hide.  :-P

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Taming the Beast

I can't believe I'm saying this already, but I think the machine quilting is...done!  It wasn't nearly as bad as I thought it'd be, once I got started.  Admittedly, my stitching looks like crap next to yours, but you know what?  For a first attempt (and with no Momisms to guide me) I think I'm doing pretty well! 

I started making the ladybug buttons last night, and I got maybe 2 to come out even remotely cute...most of them were just black and red blurs.  We'll see if I decide to keep going with that one.  There's a big open space with no quilting above the thumb, so I might need to figure something out for that. 

Anyways, without further ado, here are the latest:

The back, midway through.

The back, done!  I outlined the hand, heart, and borders.  All things considered, it looks ok.  There are a few areas that could have been better, but I'm sure you'll advise me later on how to improve.  :-)  I'm proud to say though, that there's only one small strip that has any kind of double stitching across it, and most of this is, just kept going around the corners, stuffing the quilt through the hole that seems so much bigger without half a quilt stuffed in it.  The borders were a piece of cake compared to the hand!

And, of course, the front all stitched up.  The pins are still in, as you can see.  I can see the stitching the most in the borders, but that could be just me.

Anyways, the next steps are whatever hand quilting I decide to do (I'm still not sure what I want to do yet), and the border. 

I've also started working on Grammom's's a fun spatial puzzle to figure out, especially the drawstring closures.  I'm thinking about putting some kind of "hook" on the corner of each compartment too, so she could put a little loop of yarn there to hold it while it's not part of the pattern, but so it'd be easy to grab when she's ready (as opposed to digging through to find the end of the skein). 

Anyway.  Bed time!  I can't believe how quickly this came together!  I thought I was going to be down to the wire, but it's really not so bad at all...but I gotta say, I really do have a deeper appreciation for all the quilts you've made me over the years! 

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Last Night's work

It was about 4 am before I went to bed, so I didn't get around to posting pictures...sorry.  :-)  I got a lot done last night though!  I got all the borders sewn on the front:

Then I got the back panels sewn (in two strips...I didn't relize you're technically not supposed to have the seam down the middle, to avoid wear.  Note to self):

Once all that was done, I cleared out some space in my living room:

Then laid things out to pin together:


The batting is thinner than I expected, but I think that's good.  It'll definitely work better for grammom's bag, but once I rolled the quilt up, it seemed like it would be heavy enough to keep some heat in, but not so heavy it'll be hot at any given point.  I think that it's intended to be a full-sized couch quilt lol.

Let it never be said that I didn't use my textbooks after college.

It turns out that the backing, while I thought I bought more than enough, shrank a lot in the wash.  It fits with the front, sort of.  I think I'm going to end up putting a layer of the yellow rose stuff around the outside to make sure it's big enough to cover everything.  Right now, 3/4 of the quilt is pinned though, so I think I'm going to just measure things and keep it pinned.  It's sort of easier to deal with when it's rolled nicely anyways. 

You can see the pins, sort of.

Anyways, that's the latest.  It won't fit at all in the sewing room, and it barely fits in my bedroom.  I had to move furniture to lay it out in the living room (which was the best place anyways, since the floors are hardwood kitty hair, and no chance of accidentally pinning the quilt to the floor).