Thursday, May 3, 2012


yes, Missing but In Action! I had been traveling doing photography for a concert tour and doing my Nana thing helping with the grandkids. Lots to catch up on, but need to get thru this week! Behind on my Zakka sewing, but did a bunch of other sewing before I left on my adventures two weeks ago....

stay tuned... lots of photos to follow soon!

Mary Ann

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Zakka Style Zig Zag Tote

Happy to report that I finished the tote for the week one of the Zakka sew along.  Beautiful ivory linen, an old homespun from the stash,  a Kaffee Fassett floral and a woven look solid make up what will now be my knitting tote. The sewing of the zig-zag was a challege since the pieces are all on the bias, but I found starching the fabrics before cutting help hold them from stretching. Much of this was sewing using the walking foot on my Bernina 1020. The front and back pieces are machine quilted, the top stitching and the layers due to the batting and interfacing needed the eveness the walking foot controls. I also did a lot of steam pressing (without going back and forth with the iron) to flatten the seams and top before topstitching. I do love the colors I chose from the fabrics I selected pictured in this post.

Time to cut out the next project from the book... stay tuned!!

And wishing everyone a very blessed Easter/Ressurection Day! May you enjoy the time with your family and have a beautiful day!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Sewing Summit 2012 and the Zakka Style Sew Along

WOO HOO!!  My registration for the Sewing Summit in Salt Lake City is done and the flights just booked. This is the place to be, happy October birthday to me!!

Are you going??  I know tickets sales have been fantastic and I would not be surprised if it sold out soon!

I look forward to exploring Salt Lake City  before and after the summit as it will be the first time there for me. Also looking forward to meeting the bloggers I've been reading and emailing this past almost year, along with sewing, taking classes, meeting more people, and shopping.  Also was great to use up some frequent flyer miles that were collecting dust and pay a minor fee for a seat upgrade leaving more money to spend on SHOPPING!

 The  Zakka Style sew along  starts this week. I've pulled these fabrics from my stash, along with ivory 100% cotton linen from a recent trip to Mood Fabrics in New York City. I love the look and feel of linen and quickly purchased Rashida Coleman-hale's new book right when it was released.

The first project is the Zig Zag tote.  The fabric is cut and waiting on the iron board for the next steps but there's a few 'life' things that need to be done this week.  Watching the grandkids, working a few overnights, and helping Dear Hubby get our boat into the water.  My goal is to get this bag done as I am also playing along with Keyka Lou's weekly goal setting. I see a midnight sewing party for myself one night this week...

My  flikr photos are finally updated and have also been browsing the flikr groups I've joined. So many talented people and so many wonderful items made! Love what I see and love the comments I've been getting, all has been inspiring me to do more!

How are you doing with your sewing? Maybe a little goal setting and a sew along or two will get you sewing more too! It sure is helping me!

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Camera Pouch finished!

Two weeks ago, Michelle at Keyka Lou Patterns introduced the Camera Pouch pattern after a few weeks of showing work-in-progress-samples on her fabulous sewing blog! My plan was to sew it up quickly to take along on vacation that night! Unfortunately I did not have the velcro or the grommet needed to finish it. So my G9 went with us in it's black and boring camera case.

Michelle's patterns are well written and pdf downloadable so your craving to sew it NOW can be satisfied! (Even if you have to wait to go to your LFS for the supplies you might not have like I did)

I made the medium size to hold my Canon G9, and added d-rings and a removable and adjustable shoulder/cross body strap.  Fabric used is A Stitch In Color by Malka Dubrawsky.

 I added pockets to the lining, one for an extra battery and the other to hold 2 SD cards. There is actually enough room to slip my Iphone in behind the camera! I also used a cord lock for the drawstring.

The pattern has FOUR sizes to accommodate  the many sizes of cameras, video cameras, or any electronic gear one might have.  And I am sure there are numerous other ways this pouch can be used!

Are you ready to make one? Michelle also has a flickr group so if you do, please add your photos of your finished pouch to it!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Sewing and Pattern Testing

Last spring, after an almost 15 year break, I started to sew again. My cousin had shown me a purse she made, the pattern was by Amy Butler. It peaked my interest to sew some purses. (Amazingly I have yet to make that particular purse!) My first google search of 'purse patterns' lead me to Anna's blog.  Finding hers and subsequent sewing/quilting/purse making blogs has me full throttle ahead into sewing again!

First pattern I tried from Anna's blog was the gathered clutch pattern. It was for a long time friend who received it and a box filled with various patterns I was trying out at the time. This was my first sewn in zipper clutch!

Then I made Anna's Runaround Bag as a gift for a friend. Quick, easy and fun! Wish I took a photo of it before I gave it away. Next was her Go Anywhere Bag. I made several of these.

The first Go Anywhere Bag was for me, made with Japanese fabric, piped and lined with shot cotton, and leather handles. This is my favorite bag to date!

 My daughter Amy saw this and wanted one too.   Her's was made with fabric from my stash, and corded handles.

Not wanting to be left out,  my older daughter Mylissa, mother to twins and a 2 1/2 year old, wanted one but 'Mom, could you make it a diaper bag?   A BIG Diaper bag?"  I added some width,  a gusset all around,  a zipper top,  zippered some of the pattern's pockets, added more zippered pockets, and heavy duty handles to the original pattern.

I need her to take a photo of the finished diaper bag, I though I had one!

update: Finished bag photo! 

Last month Anna posted some photos of her current in-the-works pattern and I emailed her and offered to help test the Envelope Clutch Pattern for her.  So here are they are!

The Small Envelope Clutch made in  Washi fabric fabric by Rashida Coleman Hale,  linen, lined and corded with hot pink kona cotton.  I made a wristlet strap and an adjustable shoulder strap for it.

The Medium Envelope clutch, using the Washi Fabric line inside and out.

                       And finally, the Ipad case, Amy Butler 'Martini' and some Sweetwater fabric.

Anna's patterns are easy to follow and make wonderful gifts too! I'm already working on another small envelope clutch in ivory linen with plans for another ipad case (yes, I have my eye on the Ipad 3 and it will need a case, the one above is the dear hubby's)... the possibilities are endless! 

Time to go have our corned beef and cabbage and make up another new pattern I just downloaded from my other favorite pattern maker.... stay tuned!

Monday, March 5, 2012


I am not sure if I am cut out to be a blogger yet, so busy sewing and with family things. But I won't give up. I was encouraged to read another blogger admit she did not really start blogging regularly until after a year of being online!
I just signed up for the Sewing Summit in Salt Lake City in October. Right before my birthday. I always do a trip, a concert or three, something special around that time. So this year, it will be Utah, never been there and look forward to playing tourist in the city, meeting new people and SEWING!

I wanted to share the quilts I made this past fall for our grand twins Kate and Eli. I used two charm packs of Lilly and Wil, paired them with some 'cotton cool',  fabric I purchased a full bolt of back in the early 90's. I separated the pinks and the blues, divided the browns and greens up between the two, and used a simple hour glass block. There are many tutorials for the hour glass block so I won't even attempt to explain LOL!

I did border them with a coordinating Lilly and Wil fabric, backed with another, and did the plaid binding on the bias to get the plaid on the angle. Simple small arcs machine quilting,  cotton batting and good machine wash and dry to get that wonderful crinkly aged look.

Each quilt was 9 x 9 blocks, so if you are counting, that's 41 prints matched up with 41 of the solid to get 82 hour glass blocks (with one extra) per quilt.  Charm squares being 5", makes the finished block 4" equals 36"  square plus  2" borders and binding for an approximate 40" square quilt.

I hope this has inspired you to try making an hour glass quilt. Play with block size, use your scraps, your favorite packet of charm squares you have no clue what to do with. This size would also make a great table topper! One pack of charm squares? Alternate with solid blocks to still get the same size!

Wow, that wasn't too bad, I thought this blogging thing would take a while! I might have to write again tomorrow... 

have a great day and happy sewing!

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Superbowl Sunday

Ah yes, football. Specifically the GIANTS in the Superbowl!! We are life long Giants fans with a renegade grandson who loves the Patriots...still trying to figure out how that happened! Looking forward to a great game, hopefully as exciting as the playoffs. Game time food? Shrimp and pizza! Trying to watch the 'junk' food, so I'll be eating the shrimp only!
I plan to use the time to pin a lot of half--square triangles for my quilt along  Sparkle Quilt with In Color Order and Canyon Ridge Creations, might sneak upstairs to sew during half-time! And maybe some more knitting... I just can't SIT at watch TV.  Are you like that too?

so here's to an evening of pinning , eating and of course GO GIANTS!!!