felted dog bed

I have two dogs that have made their appearance in my blog (& instagram) from time to time. Well last year we had to break them of the sleep on furniture habit as we purchased new couches for both our living & family rooms. I couldn't let my pampered pooches make them become glorified dog beds this time around. Yeah sure, once in a while in the family room is okay, but not on a daily basis and never if we aren't around. It was a hard learned lesson for my pups but I think we have succeeded in getting the message across.

Enter the new dog bed. My dogs are pretty simple creatures. Most days they want an old pillow or a crumpled up blanket to sleep on. That's when I remembered seeing this post on apartment therapy.

Back in my hard core thrifting days I managed to amass a nice selection of sweaters for felting, no doubt for some great craft idea that has come and gone. It was back in the days when I made a couple of felted bunnies for my wee girlies. I hung onto the sweaters in hopes that I would be re-inspired to use them and I can say that this is probably one of the first times that has actually worked. I set to work cutting up the felted sweaters into various sized squares. Sewed them back up in a patchwork style. The final product needed to be large enough to cover an old pillow front to back. Next I sewed the one long edge (the other long edge is folded) and short end. I left an opening on the opposite short end for the pillow to be inserted, and I sewed a strip of velcro on the short end for ease of opening and closing in case I need to add a new pillow or things need to be washed. (Best part about the washing thing is you can easily use hot water with no fear of shrinkage as it is already felted). Check out the apartment therapy post as it has step-by-step instructions.

Really super easy project start to finish. And I think it might be a wee bit more attractive than seeing an old white, naked pillow laying on the floor. It is Lily approved too! Now to get busy on the second one.


somewhere far, far, away...

Have I ever told you how much I love Heather Ross' fabric? I mean love. I have quite a few of her fabric lines sitting in my fabric stash. They are just waiting for the perfect project - crazy right? I know it. I totally realize how ocd that is and I'm trying to curb that tendency to hoard save fabric. I mean for gosh darn sake, it's only fabric right? (I really want to think that way. I mean what is the point of buying fabric if you aren't going to use it?)

I have long realized that collecting fabric, for me, is just as much fun as sewing the fabric. But after a while collecting without using can also become a burden... and burdens tend to be life sucking. So in the interest of fun, I finally cut into my precious Heather Ross Far Far Away II fabric. 

A bit about the fabric: it was originally printed by Kokka fabrics and I'm hoping it will be re-printed - like the princess and the pea was - in quilters cotton. I'm sure I'll be all over that line if it comes again, but I digress. The fabric is a hefty 80% linen/20% cotton blend which tells me off the hop that is is going to be sturdy. Nice for some crafty functional projects.

First thing I needed was that perfect project *cough, cough. Since my girls have been in need of pouches for their pencils, erasers and such, I thought this would be a good jump off point. This usually starts with a quick drawing in my sketch book and then onto prototype stage made from my endless vintage sheet supply.

Once I tweaked the project I was all set. Armed with my rotary cutter and a new "use it up" attitude, I took a deep breath and cut into my stash. And you know it wasn't too painful. The fabric, both the fabulous art and weight were a great choice for my girls' pouches.

Miss A's pouch: front


Miss J's pouch: front



mini quilt swap = mini swoon

Block 1: mini swoon for the #schnitzelandboominiquiltswap #miniquilt Block 2: mini swoon for the #schnitzelandboominiquiltswap #miniquilt
Last year I participated in round 2 of the schnitzel & boo mini quilt swap. It was a good distraction before the dreaded house remodeling started and it got me dusting off my sewing machine. Anything to get me sewing is always good in my books.

I was given a bit information about who I would be sewing for, their fabric likes/dislikes, designers they admire, pattern likes, etc. Armed with that information I choose Camille Ross Kelley's mini swoon quilt pattern. I've been crushing on her big swoon pattern for quite a while now and thought my foray into the swoon world via a mini would be a good place to start.  Block 3: mini swoon for the #schnitzelandboominiquiltswap #miniquilt #swoonminiquilt Block 4: mini swoon for the #schnitzelandboominiquiltswap #miniquilt #swoonminiquilt
My partner favoured cool, neutral colours. The fabric was an easy selection for me as I too am partial to the cool neutrals. I used Denyse Schmidt Hope Valley fabrics paired with Robert Kaufman's Essesx in flax. It was my first time sewing with the Essex. It was definitely easier than sewing with straight linen but pairing it up with Hope Valley - quilting cotton - in a mini quilt made getting points perfect a bit challenging. I think the weight of Essex might lend itself to larger projects but I'll have to confirm that when I attempt that next.
Scrappy binding for the #schnitzelandboominiquiltswap #miniquilt #swoonminiquilt #makeaquiltmakeafriend Mini swoon finished. Hope it works out for you secret partner :) #schnitzelandboominiquiltswap #makeaquiltmakeafriend #swoonminiquilt #miniquilt
quilt stats:

fabric: Hope Valley by Denyse Schmidt, Essex (flax) Robert Kaufman
backing: (not visible) Hope Valley
pattern: Mini Swoon by Thimble Blossoms
quilting: straight crisscross lines by me.
dimensions: approx. 22" x 22"
gifted to: Sarah of duck egg threads


In a nutshell

Hello blog world.

It has been almost 8 months since I wrote my last blog post. A terribly long time to be away from one's blog don't you think? At the very least it is a sure fire way to lose all your blog readers. While I didn't intend to do that, I'm sure my switch from blogging platform Typepad to Blogger last March (2014) didn't help in that arena as well. Good thing I'm not in it for the readership.

In spite of my effort, I will press on in blog land, in one form or another. It's a nice space to come to. I know the blogging thing has morphed over the past few years. People don't read them as much, and a lot of the new ones that pop up now are super techie with tons of advertising. It's all fine with me, people have to do what they feel led to do, after all no one size fits all.

June 2014
Miss A and me having a morning cuddle. #daughter #1of2
July 2104
Storybook perfect: I love living near the lake. #lakeliving #familywalk
Sept 2014
Widr: family walk #family #simplicity #beautifulevening
Oct 2014
Pumpkin carving #halloween #pumpkincarving #spooky #boo
Jan 2015
Christmas is coming down. Time to reclaim our space and pack things up for another year. #ornaments #newyear
Jan 2015
Girlies are icing the gingerbread. #cookies #homemade #homeschooling #gingebreadcookies

For me however, I think I will keep this space simple. When I first started this blog - back in 2007, it was for me an online journal of sorts. A place where I could look back and see some of my accomplishments and also capture snippets of my life with 4 kids - those young magical years filled with sweet times together. I love looking back on those years in my blog; mostly because I have been lousy at putting photo albums together and  those images of my little kidlets are readily available.

So if this is the case - keeping the blog alive - where have I been for the past year? Well, as with all things best intentions get laid aside for practicality, and I am a practical girl. The short version is the hubby and I continued our 6 year long renovation on the duckyhouse. We started in July optimistically thinking we could rip it off in 3 weeks. Excuse me while I pause and laugh my face off. Hahahaha. Good one. Well it lasted until Christmas, mostly. Then I feverishly threw the house together for Christmas, including wrapping gifts until 4:00am on Christmas Day. Lame I know. Such was my year in 2014. I was very happy to see the end of it and start a new year.

So far this year has been good. I'm a month into 2015 and I finally got my word -  "fearless". Yup, I'm planning on being fearless this year. I might need help with it once in a while but fearless it is. I've got a few big decisions looming and perhaps, just perhaps being fearless will help me get to where I need to go.

Photos are from my instagram account June 2014 - Jan 2015

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