Me & My Stitches

Me & My Stitches
Click on the picture to go to my website. These are 1' x 1 1/2" pendants.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Soup's On!

I haven't written for a few days, or posted any cat pictures - I bet you all were thinking that Callie is being a good kitty, and there is no news, right?  WRONG!!  She is still her bad little self.  A question for you....where do good kitties lay?



NOT ON THE COUNTER!!!!!  You notice that she could care less that I know she is up there.  She really thinks she is the Queen!  Drives me crazy.

Another interesting place that she likes to be:


Yes, she is inside the dishwasher.  When I unload it, she waits patiently until I get everything out of the bottom before she hops in.  She seems to think it is a fun place to play.  She is really cute, though - which is the only reason that she gets away with being so bad all the time.  Doesn't she look funny with her paws over the rack?  She really does make me laugh.  Enough of her for now - I'm sure she will give me something to blog about again later...

I have been busy with a couple of new wholesale orders - which is a good thing.  Also took a little road trip on Wednesday after my hair cut.  The shop in Hills, IA - Inspirations - is now stocked back up with my jewelry.  If you are ever in the area, stop and see them - she really has a nice shop, and there is a great deli/bakery attached to the shop.  I grabbed a sandwich for lunch - it was yummy, and the cookies are amazing! 

Speaking of yummy - Hubby gave me a really nice bundle of fabric for Christmas:


It is Jo Morton - Ember Reds and Evergreens.  I want to open it up and look closer, but it just looks so nice in it's bundle form!  (Thanks again Tara from Sew Unique Creations for helping him with his order - you never go wrong ordering from her!)  One of these days I am going to open it up and come up with a nice little project to use some of these.


The hubby bought a new cookbook:

and he is trying it out this weekend (I love it when he gets in cooking mode!).  I love soup and could eat it every day - he usually isn't that excited about it, but he does like to try new recipes.  Last night he made Beef Barley Soup.  It was really good and I ate waaaayyy too much.  Probably explains why I stopped losing weight at the weekly Weight Watchers meeting, huh?  Tonight he is making White Chili.  Instead of using ground turkey (like the recipe calls for) he is using chicken.  I wanted to make bread in the bread machine, but I have no yeast.  Grrrr...I am not going to town for it either - so I guess we will not have bread!  I had thought of making beer bread (no yeast needed!) but we have no beer!  Not big drinkers, obviously.  I wonder what would happen if I used diet 7-up or Smirnoff Ice?  Hmmm...I will let you know the results if I try it.

I better get busy finishing up orders - hope you all have a great weekend!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Just Ramblings!

Good Morning!  I have my two days of official outside-my-house work finished for the week and now it is time to do the important stuff!  Jewelry and quilting!  Yippee!  I have to get my mop cut this morning and thought after that I would run to a couple of my favorite quilt shops - they are in need of more jewelry for their shops.  Wish I had a little more made up, but it will have to do.  I have a new customer, from New Hampshire who placed an order for 35 pieces last weekend.  That is why you haven't heard much from me - I am busy trying to get her order finished up.  I'm almost there!  Tomorrow I am going to get serious and sew the day away. 

I wanted to share a cute Santa with you - even though it is well after Santa season, I still have him sitting in the window in my sewing room, cuz I think he is so cute.  I have to keep him out longer than the rest of the Christmas decorations.

Isn't he cute?  He is all hand made, and is holding a big Christmas ornament.  A lady in Fairfield, Iowa makes these - hubby bought him for me last year at CR Quilts in Fairfield.  But even neater - look at his jacket from the back....

It's a crazy quilt.  I just love him and am going to keep him out awhile longer!

I also wanted to show you a picture of a wall hanging that is one of my favorites - this is on the wall in my sewing room:

Aunt Nancy made one of these, and brought it down (she lives in MN) to show me.  She wanted it hand quilted, but she does not like to hand quilt!  I told her that I would quilt it for her - it didn't take long at all - I just did diagonal lines over the whole thing - in both directions.  For quilting it for her, she made one for me!  I just love it - I love the faces in the center and all of the Civil War reproduction fabrics.  Cute!! 

I guess I better get my act together and get moving - hope you all have a great day!!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Save the scraps!!!!!

I swear...every time I watch Fons & Porter they talk about how they throw away their "scraps".  Ok people...those are not scraps!  Do you know how much jewelry I could make out of those?!  I keep thinking that I will e-mail them and tell them that they are killing me!  It is funny, because I keep (and use) pieces that normal people definitely would throw away. 

If you know me, you know that I LOVE PRESENTS!  My Aunt Nancy often sends me fun little packages of stuff.  Sometimes a bunch of scraps from her latest project.  Sometimes bigger pieces.  Sometimes cookies (Valentine's Day is coming - she makes great V-Day cookies - hearts with frosting - hint...hint!).  It's fun to get those fabric scraps in the mail - gives me a little variety to what I am currently working on. Aunt Nancy would never throw away those "scraps"!!

Aside from the above rant, I really don't have much to talk about today.  I kept busy all day yesterday with orders and making some new pieces.  I have sold a bunch of scissor fobs, so I made up a lot more of those and will have them on the website before the weekend is over.  And some more hearts that sold right away after we posted them online. I also made a batch of pendants to send to Aunt Nancy - can't show a picture yet, but I will next week.  I played around with my new software - I just received the EQ7 update and I also bought Block Base.  Does anyone have that and use it? Let me know if you have any hints for me.   I need to spend some more time with it, but it really has lots of neat stuff in there.  I really would like to better master EQ.  I do the basics, but I know it is capable of so much more - the question is - am I capable of much more?  Being technically challenged, it is kind of scary.

I do have a couple of pictures for you - I know it is shocking, but they are cat pictures!!  The first one shows Callie in normal mode. 

Yes, she is the blur with the white feet.  She was being sooooo wild.  She gets that way and you just can't get her to calm down.

Then later, after she finally wore herself out - I thought it was important to show this picture:

Awwww...doesn't she look sweet?  All tired out, taking a nap.  Makes me laugh.

Well, that is all for now - I have to get busy.  So many projects, so little time!!

Have a great weekend - and don't forget - STOP THROWING AWAY THOSE "SCRAPS"!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

I LOVE FABRIC!!!

You know...many people are appalled when they look in my sewing room closet and see my stash.  But, I don't care - I LOVE IT!  And I make no apologies for any of it, there isn't one piece that I regret.  I figure...I worked a full time job for a long time, and if I can't buy things that I want, then what's the point?  Guess I have to be a little more careful now - unless you all buy lots of jewelry every single day - did I mention you can do that on my website -  Me & My Stitches.  LOL.  Today I thought I would give you a little peek into my stash, but you only get to see pinks and browns - and it's not all of the pinks and browns!  Ok, ok, so I do go overboard.  I can't help it - I love them all!!!!  Everything on my shelves are reproduction fabrics, mainly from the Civil War Era.  Aren't they yummy?  It makes me happy just to look at them.


Actually my whole sewing room makes me happy.  I love it in here, and spend the vast majority of my time here.  Below, you can see part of one wall. This is what I decided to do with some of my small quilts. Some of them are Little Jo's, one is a Lori Smith - I love her stuff. The big log cabin is from a pattern I bought at a great shop in Marion, IA - that was a really fun one - log cabins have always been one of my favorite patterns.


Below is a picture of  one corner of my sewing room.  The old pictures were from my Grandma and Grandpa Bischoff's house - they are so cool. The round one is a tin type and is my Great Grandmother (I think).  One of the others is of my Grandma and her 4 siblings when they were young.  The lamp came from my Mom and Dad's house - I really like it too - Mom was tired of it (lucky me!!)  Then there are some Jim Shore Santas that my husband has bought for me in the last few years.  There are a couple of old spools up there too that we bought at an auction - I know we bought at least 6 of them, but I sure don't know what happened to the rest.  The bookcase is an old lawyer barrister bookcase that also came from Grandma and Grandpa's house.  See why I like my sewing room?  It makes me happy!  I am just a happy camper today.  Love my surroundings!














Well, that is all for today - I have to get busy - have a few orders to work up, thanks to Tara from
Sew Unique Creations - Click on the link to read her blog (she always has neat pictures of her latest projects) and make sure to check out her new book - which will be in quilt shops soon (I can't wait!!).  Be sure to visit her website as well  Sew Unique Creations - she gets the best fabric lines and is doing some great new monthly programs.  Tara was kind enough to post my link on her blog yesterday and it got me some extra traffic - thanks to Tara and thanks to all of you who signed up to follow my blog and also visited my website and placed an order.  I will be posting some new pieces on the website today, so go visit   -   Me and My Stitches!

Have a great day!!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

A few more things...

Hello again!  Anyone out there?  Anyone reading my silly ramblings?  Well, I hope so, and I will ramble some more today!  I took a few pictures over the weekend to share with you - and will post some today and maybe a few more tomorrow.  Since I started this whole blog with the cats, I guess I will keep you up-to-date on them.

This is Ozzie (OS) in one of his favorite hiding places (from Callie).  He is in my sewing room closet - kind of behind the door.  Doesn't he look sleepy?  Ignore the mess around him!  The bad news is....Callie has discovered his hiding place and sometimes when she is feeling extra sassy she goes in the closet and looks for him!  I am telling you - she is a bad kitty!  Poor OS - no peace for him.

Yes, this is bad kitty.  Doesn't she just look like she is up to something?  I think she is ready to get into my scraps.  Or.....look closely at the far right side of the picture.  Is that the tip of an orange tail that I see?  Well, yes...I think it is.  Ozzie is about to be pounced on!  Poor Ozzie.

Ok...I really am NOT the Crazy Cat Lady.  I do more than just sit around and take pictures of the furballs.  To prove it:

These are some of the pieces that we finished over the weekend.  The scissor fobs are popular.  Usually when I hit the streets and sell to quilt shops they buy all of the fobs that we have made up.  They do make good gifts for quilting friends. 

Ok, that is all for now - I have to get busy. You will have to wait until tomorrow for more pictures of my sewing room - can't show you everything now, if I do there will be nothing to talk about tomorrow!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

But wait...what about the dogs??

Yes, we have two dogs too, but they are outside.  Actually there are more cats outside as well.  The picture below is kind of hard to see, but I thought it was funny.  CC sitting in the window watching Boomer, who is outside, happy as can be, sitting in the snow.  You know if cats had thumbs, she would be thumbing her nose at the dog.  She thinks she is special, being inside and all.  Little does she know, Boomer loves it outside.  He is so funny - he just tromps around out there - walking across the pond when it is frozen (which I wish he wouldn't do - makes me nervous) and eating everything he can get his mouth on.  He will be one year old in February, and still has a lot of puppy in him.  No pictures of Sophie (our border collie) today - she is probably hiding from Boomer!







I took another picture, from the other windows in my sewing room - looking onto the deck.  Doesn't it look cold?  It's only 14 degrees!

 
And back to quilting...I did not come up with a pattern yesterday.  I thought about it, and messed around with some ideas.  Then one thing led to another (is it just me, or does that happen to everyone?) I ended up buying the upgrade to EQ7 and added in Block Base just for good measure!  So that gave me the excuse to wait on the pattern idea until I get my new software.  I just really don't enjoy making patterns - I would rather be making jewelry.  So...that is what I did.  Below is a day or two of work.  They are not finished, the hubby still needs to do his part (glass, solder, etc!).


There is one kind-of-new design - see the little basket in a square?  That is new - before I just made plain baskets (not in the square!)  I thought it was kind of cute.  It is 1 1/4".  I still like the new triangles. 

Another thing I have been thinking about is making pin cushions to take to shows when I vend.   I need stuff to fill up my booth - the jewelry just doesn't take up that much room!  Let me know what you think...these are what I have made so far.  The square ones are 3 1/2" (if I remember right).


Ok, now I have to decide what I am going to work on the rest of the day.  I got my cleaning chores done (YUCK!!!! - I hate cleaning), so I am guilt-free the rest of the day.  Hope you have a great day!!!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Yes, there is another cat

Yesterday I only showed you pictures of the 2 calicoes.  There is another fluffy that you haven't seen.  His name is OS, and he is a BIG boy.  Eighteen pounds worth of fluff.  Guess where his favorite place to sleep is?  That's right, on my chest.  It's just wonderful to wake up gasping for air because he is weighing me down.  But he is a good boy - little miss Callie could learn a thing or two from him!


But, you know, I didn't start this blog to talk about my cats!  (Though I have been called the Crazy Cat Lady before).  I started it so I could share my love of quilting and our jewelry business.  Yesterday I worked on jewelry - nothing really too new and different.  I need to come up with some new patterns.  Speaking of patterns, I am thinking of making a new quilt pattern - only having 2 seems kinda lame.  What do you think?  I am thinking of something small (shocking, I know).   Hmmm...I will have to give it some more thought.

I also wanted to share a cute picture of my little Grandson, Kaden.  It is kind of blurry, but you get the idea.


I tried to crop out the knees, but being technically challenged, that didn't work out.  Anyway...isn't he cute?  He belongs to my son Michael.  His girlfriend, Shannon took the picture and e-mailed it to me.  She is so good about sending pictures - gotta love her.  My daughter, Jessica is a major picture taker (that would be photographer, huh?)  She is constantly taking pictures.  I need to have her send me some from Christmas so I can share those with you too.

Ok, I just got off the quilting topic again.  I need to drink more coffee and FOCUS! I am going to go back to thinking about that new pattern....

Friday, January 14, 2011

Let's give it a try!

Well, I decided to try my hand at blogging and see how it goes.  I make no promises!  Now that I have quit my full-time job, my favorite thing to do as soon as I get up in the morning is to check out blog posts!  They are so inspiring, and they get me ready to go for the day.  I love all of the pictures and new ideas, and just taking a peek into what people are doing.  Hopefully I will have something interesting to post once in awhile!  I know I still have a ways to go to get this set up, and then there probably won't be anyone to read it!  I will put a link to it on my website, if I can figure that out.  I am technically challenged, so if things don't look right, let me know, and I will get the computer guru to help me!

Oh...I do want to post a couple of pictures.  I love my house, and I mostly love my sewing room, and my sewing room closet, and my fabric stash!!!  As you can see from the picture above, CC also loves my fabric stash.  Not sure what she is doing in there, probably trying to get away from Callie - who is very bratty and loves to chase the other cats, eat plants, get on the counters, and generally be a pain in the butt.  Here is a good example of Callie being her bad little self.
Yes, she is clear on top of the kitchen cupboards, surrounded by fragile antiques!  She drives me nuts.  We now have to leave a cabinet door open so she can't get up there anymore.  This, after she knocked an antique glass jar full of old marbles off, onto the floor at about 2:00 a.m.!  Oh, so bratty!