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Thursday, March 31, 2011

Great Magazine Deal

Last year while attending my first big quilt show in Chicago, I was suckered into buying a subscription to Sew News magazine.  Let me say, it was so worth the 10 minutes that I had to spend visiting with the annoying salesperson.

I love that Sew News is packed with tons of tips, and has fun project patterns and ideas.  This month's issue contains a pattern for this fun spring skirt shown on the cover.

Sew News

Right now they are offering this great deal.  I've already got mine!

Happy reading,

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

This Farm Kid

This boy, MUST be a farm boy. 

He's been gearing up for spring by singing his new favorite song.

Who's Gonna Feed Them Hogs

I think that he knows all of the words, and loves to sing it as loud as possible.  In a world where most kids are belting out Bieber and Miley, this guy is walking his own musical path.  I can't wait to see what he loves next.

Of course, what can you expect when your parents song is "Fishin' in the Dark"?

Hope that you're enjoying your music this week!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

A Fun Coaster Crafty

We were getting ready to attend the wedding of two wonderful people recently, and I wanted to come up with a personalized gift for them.  I turned to my trusty new friend, Mod Podge, and found a great gift idea that even a 3 year old can be a part of creating.

First, I gathered my supplies.

Spray Adhesive, 4" Square Cork Coasters, Mod Podge, Foam Brushes (all found at Hobby Lobby)
4" Square Ceramic Tiles (found at Menards)
4" square pieces, cut from an old atlas

I began by hunting through my car for an old atlas.  We seem to have a million of these floating around our garage and vehicles, and I can't remember the last time that I actually even looked at one.  It makes me a little nastalgic to see these now.  It seems that I really do use my phone for everything these days, especially navigation.  It was time to give the atlas a new purpose! 

I pinpointed certain "fun" cities (where the couple grew up, went to college, and now live.) and cut 4" squares incorporating these locations.

Next, we used the adhesive spray to adhere the cork squares to the bottom of our tiles. 

We then coated the top of each tile in a thin layer of Mod Podge.  We placed the map squares on top, and finised with another coat of Mod Podge.

After allowing the tiles to dry, we coated them in 2 thin layers of high gloss sealant.

Then it was time to site back and enjoy our work!  They turned out great, and were such a fun crafty!

I hope that the happy couple enjoy them.  I can't wait to try creating a set with fabric!

Happy crafty!


Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Sausage Breakfast Casserole

Growing up, my Nana would make her egg & sausage breakfast casserole for us each Christmas.  My mother has continued this tradition.  Smell evokes such a strong sense of memory, I feel like I'm right back at my Nana's when this is baking in the oven.

Breakfast Sausage Casserole

1 lb Breakfast Sausage, browned
6 eggs
2 c. milk
1 c. cheddar cheese, shredded
1 t. dry mustard
5 slices bread

Mix all together.  Please in greased 8 1/2x11 pan.  Place in refrigerator over night or at least 6 hours before baking.  Cover with foil, bake 30 minutes.  Uncover and bake 15-20 minutes more until top is golden brown.  Bake at 350.

Nana's notes say that 1.5 times the recipe will fill at 9x13 pan and serve 12.  She also adds that this makes a nice carry-in dish for a group breakfast. 
(I'll be making is twice this week!)

The very best part of this recipe, is that I have it on a card in Nana's handwriting.  It was given to me at my wedding shower.  It just doesn't get much better than a loving grandmother and a good casserole!

Happy baking,

Monday, March 21, 2011


I found an old oil painting in an antique store for around $5.00.  I liked the simple frame and the size of the piece, but wasn't too crazy about the actual picture.  So, I sanded the picture down, and applied several coats of chalkboard paint

Studio Finishes® Chalkboard Paint

And, I thought that the red frame would be a nice contrast.

The Bug absolutely loves sitting at the kitchen table and using the chalkboard to practice his letters and spelling.  It has saved Mommy's sanity many times while making dinner.

Here he is suprising Daddy by spelling his name!

We had no idea that he could write anything other than "Nate".  Sometimes is scary to think about all this kid knows!

Happy crafty!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Sweet Baby Boy

We are so excited to welcome a sweet baby boy into our family!  My cousin Anne, gave birth to little Jackson a couple of weeks ago.  We love you little Jack!

We all thought that he'd enjoy a cuddly taggy blanket, with his name on it of course!  It's backed in super soft minky to make it extra snuggly.

Happy crafty!

Friday, March 18, 2011

Ruffle Fabric

Yep, it's just what it sounds like, a site dedicated to beautiful ruffley fabric.

Like this

Image of NEW - Aqua Cascading Ruffle Fabric

And this

Image of NEW - "Sweethearts" Hot Pink and Red Cascading Ruffle Fabric

And my favorite...this.

Image of NEW - Black "Crazy Maze" Ruffle Fabric

Wouldn't it make such a fun skirt?

Here are a few more project ideas.

Image of Infant & Toddler Ruffle Fabric Skirt with Elastic Waistband

Image of Taupe 2 Inch Ruffle Fabric

The sweet folks at Whimsy Couture are looking for pattern testers to work on their new Ruffle Romper pattern.   Check it out!

Happy stitching,

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Erin Go Braugh!

We grew up shouting "Erin Go Braugh!" around  my house each St. Patrick's Day.  So, Happy St. Pat's to you all!

I'll be having my morning coffee in this.

While looking at these.

They were left for me on my front porch by a sweet friend.  What a dear act of kindness that's just made my week!  You just have feel like spring is here when looking at yellow flowers.  That, and our high here is in the 70's today!

Oh, and holidays always tend to sneak up on me, but I did plan ahead for E Lo's outfit for today.

The kids have Wear Green day at school today.  I realized E Lo's wardrobe was lacking in the green department, so I went to work with some fun pink and green fabrics.  Here is the end result.

How can you not smile when you see this bright and cheerful outfit?

Happy Spring & Happy St. Pat's!


Tuesday, March 15, 2011

My Oops Shirt

Remember my previous post?  The one where I messed up the shirt, and ended up chopping off the embroidered "K"?  Well I just couldn't throw away a perfectly good 1/2 shirt, so I decided to try my hand at making a custom creation for E Lo.

Here is what I had to start with.

I made sure to keep what I could of the top and bottom portions of the shirt.  Then I dug through my pile of old t-shirts and came up with two nice shades of gray knit.  Using the width of the shirt as a guide, I cut a few alternating gray strips to add length.

I made sure that the bottom strip came from the bottom of one of my t-shirts so that I didn't have to worry about hemming it.  I then stitched all the pieces together with the seams on the inside and topstitched.  I'm kind of a nut when it comes to topstitching.  Love it!

We decided to add a few sweet hearts using a stencil made of freezer paper.

Sorry about the picture.  It was nighttime in the sweat shop.  I'll try to do better next time!

The only thing left to do was to hem the sleeves a bit.  What a fun and relatively easy was to fix my mistake!

Happy Stitching!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Custom Order!

This week something super exciting happened in the world of Lois Pearl!  I recieved my very first custom order from someone who randomly found me on etsy!  I've had lots and lots of custom orders from word of mouth referrals and friends, but never from someone who had just happened upon my site!

She loved the springy skirts listed in my shop.  Her little darling likes to collect treasures, so we came up with a delightful little pocket in which she can hide her goodies.

This springy skirt will be making its way cross-country to Norfolk, VA today.

Did I mention how tiny this skirt is?  Just 9" from waist to hem.  It's just too cute!  And, I just love the yo-yo flower and funky button!

One of my big goals for this year is to give Lois Pearl more attention.  Sewing is absolutely my first love!

Happy crafty!

As I'm writing this some of you are probably wondering who in the world Lois Pearl is.  I'll make a mental note to follow up with a post explaining the name this weekend. 

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Padded Laptop Case

I was gearing up for a recent trip, and realized that I might need a padded laptop case.  I'm known for being a bit clumsy, and could just see myself clunking my poor innocent computer around.

After digging through my "scrap pile" I found two delightful Amy Butler prints to use. 

I used a small strip of velcro to hold it all together and sandwiched fusible fleece in between the layers for padding. This was honestly a super quick and easy project!

And, I'm happy to report that my darling laptop and I are now home once again, safe and sound.

Happy crafty!


Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Plate Painting Project

Unfortunately, our MOPS speaker cancelled at the last minute last week, leaving us with an hour of time to kill.  What better way to use your time than with a fun crafty project, and some old fashioned girl talk?  I spent the day prior to our meeting racing around town to get all of the necessary supplies, and it was well worth the effort.

We got in touch with our crafty side this week and painted one-of-a-kind plates.  These are so much fun to create!  The girls were all able to get in touch with their inner crafty and their personalities really came through in their designs.  We had bunnies, cupcakes, cakes, stars, fruit and lots and lots of polka dots!

Here is how I went about creating my special plate.

Step 1:  We started by purchasing clear glass plates.  I found them at Hobby Lobby and Walmart. 

You will also need:
Paint brushes
Acrylic paint
Rubbing alcohol or Goo Gone
Dry erase pen

Step 2:  Remove the annoying super sticky price stickers.  You can use either Goo Gone, or just simple rubbing alcohol.  I found that I prefered the rubbing alcohol, because it didn't leave behind a greasy residue.  

Note:  If using rubbing alchohol, there is no need to wash the plates after removing the sticker.  If using Goo Gone, run the plates through the dishwasher after the sticker is removed. 

Step 3:  Use a dry erase pen to outline your design on the FRONT of the plate.  This will give you a nice template when you turn the plate over to paint the back side.

Note:  For those who have crafty anxiety, I provided a few cookie cutters that could be traced.  The hearts and bunnies were a big hit!

Step 4:  Time to start painting!

I followed Whimsy Love's recommendation, and used folkArt paints.  The run just under $2 each at JoAnn's or Michael's and come in a huge variety of colors.  One of the benefits of folkArt is that they only recommend an hour drying time, where other paints will require long to set.

Remember that you are painting from the most detailed pieces to the least.  I began by painting my sprinkles, and the outlines of my cupcake cup.  At this point my 3 year old also decided that he wanted to "help". 

(Translation:  He drew all over his arms and gave himself full sleeve "tatoos" while I wasn't watching) 

So, in the interest of time, and my sanity, I opted for polka dots instead of my initial letters.  I ended up really liking that the plate can be used for all special days, and not just birthdays.

I'm not always known for my patience, and again, the 3 year old was helping, so I sped the drying process along with my hair dryer.

I then added the additional layers of color and detail.

Step 5:  Allow the plate to dry and then remove the dry erase design.  To preserve, place plate in a cold oven.  Preheat over to 350 degrees and bake the plate for 30 minutes.  Turn oven off, and allow plate to cool completely before removing.  Or, you can allow the plate to air dry for 3 weeks before use.  Hand wash plate.  I've also read that you can place the plates on the top rack the dishwasher, but I'm not brave enough for that.

This would be a great project to do with your kiddos!  These plates would be so cute with hand or footprints.  Or, you could make seasonal plates and give them as gifts to friends and family!  So many possibilities!

We'll be using this special plate today for Hillbilly's birthday!

Enjoy your special plate!


Sunday, March 6, 2011

Kathie's Italian Snack Bread

My dear cheffy friend Kathie has the most wonderful food blog.  I love that the recipes she shares are quick, and have short ingredient lists. 

We're big bread eaters in our house.  This Italian Snack Bread recipe was right up our alley.  So easy and quick!  We had everything in the pantry, and it was beyond wonderful! 

Sorry, we snarfed it  before we could take pictures.  So, click on the link above to see Kathie's great pictures.

Your mouth will water.
You'll make it.
You'll love it!

Our next version will include the family staple....olives!

Thanks for sharing Kathie!


Saturday, March 5, 2011

I just love coats.

I love coats.  And jackets too.  Love them all!  We joke that it must run in the family, because my brother is the same way.  I think that I'm passing this love on to my kiddos.

I love Heidi and Finn too!  They have the most beautiful, simple patterns.  Like this one.

Miss E Lo "needed" a new spring/fall weight jacket, and it was the perfect excuse to try this pattern.

Here is what we came up with.

It's made with the softest fleece in a wonderful butter shade.  The lining is just fun!

Did you notice the vintage ivory button?  It's from my grandmother's button stash.  It's just the icing on the cake isn't it?

This would be a great beginner pattern.

Happy crafty!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Simple Pocket

There once was a was on clearance.

I never say "no" to a jacket on clearance.

Love the color, but it needs a little more personality.

Time to raid the scrap bin!

How about a pocket, and a sweet litle yo yo?

Still simple, I'm a simple girl, but with more personality.

Happy crafty!