Saturday, March 31, 2012

Basic Table Runner

I blame Spring's earlier-than-usual-arrival for my creative funk.  It was almost HOT here this week.  Some people are saying we could reach 90 this weekend.  It's not even April yet!

The yardwork is calling.  There were indoor projects planned.  I've been battling colds and seasonal allergies.  And there are never enough hours in the day.

But I did finally put away the Christmas table runner this week.  In my defense, it's not technically a Christmas pattern.  It's just green, gold and red.

Yeah, kind of Christmas-y.

Our dining room table is large (one of my pet peeves is being crowded when I'm eating), so a custom runner was necessary.  I finally found a print that could carry me through several seasons, Christmas excluded!

This is so easy to make, you hardly need a tutorial.  First, determine the width and the overall length of the runner.  I like the points to hang about 3 inches above the chairs at the head of the table.  If you are sewing the seams, add a half inch seam allowance to all sides.  You can use Stitch Witchery as well.  Just  add the necessary allowance to create a hem when you fuse it in place.

If you are using a sewing machine, fold one side under 1/4 of an inch then fold it over again 1/4 inch.  Stitch along the edge.  If you are using Stitch Witchery, just fold it over as much as you need to cover the fusing and iron according the manufacturer's instructions.  Repeat on all four sides.

Fold each end neatly to make a point and press with an iron.

Tack the flaps in place with about a 4-6 inch long seam. 

If your fabric has a print and you can match the thread closely, you'll hardly see the stitching on the front side.

That's all there is to it!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Floretine Dreams

In honor of our first trip to Italy 10 years ago this March, may I introduce the latest addition to my Etsy shop:

Actually this print reminds me more of Siena than Florence, but you get the idea.

This canvas tote is available here.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012


I'm having issues with focus.

I pulled all the books off the bookcases in the basement several weeks ago.  I rearranged the three mismatched bookcases and gave up.

I asked the spousal unit if we can retire the old bookcases and get new ones that matched.  Nothing fancy.  He said "Not right now."


I'd really like to check out Ikea's uber-affordable Billy system, but we live in an Ikea dead-zone.  The shipping charges alone for three Billys is $349.  I could drive to the nearest Ikea 8 hours away, stay the night in a decent hotel, and then drive 8 hours home. 

Better still, just stay home.  I'm sure I can find three nice bookcases locally for less than $500.

Moving on...

I've been dusting off my painting skills, mostly abstract landscapes.  The husband has been dropping serious hints about his dislike of the generic Tuscan scenes I bought several years ago at a national retailer who shall remain nameless.   

Let me practice a little more and then I'll share.

Moving on...

I've started cutting out pieces for a new quilt.

I'm going with a different pattern this year.  Here's a peek.


My big accomplishment last week was replacing the ball rod assembly in of the bathroom sinks.  That's the gizmo under the sink that makes the drain stopper move up and down when you pull on the little knob next to the facet handle.  Not really a blog-worthy project.

We have six bathroom sinks in our house.  I've replaced four of these ball rod assemblies.  I'm pretty flexible and I have long fingers so I'm pretty good with under the sink work.

I did re-paint this cute little tray I found at a thrift store to corral my hair styling products.

I spent last Saturday cleaning out dead brush and remaining leaves.  Mid-way through mowing the back yard, the self-propeller on our 14 year old mower stopped working.

We'll see what it takes to fix it.  Buying a new lawn mower is going to take a serious bite from my garden budget this year.


So the books are still scattered on the floor.  The painting is finished but not hung on the wall.  The quilt is about 1/3 cut out.  This week I'll have to load the icky, dirty lawn mower into car to get it fixed.

Maybe this week will be more inspiring.