Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Getting organized

Sometime each winter, usually right around New Years, I  get ambitious about cleaning out and getting organized. In this years’ round of organizing, I ended up with an extra clear  shoe-organizer thing-y.

organizing fabric scraps

I decided to put it back to use, to hold my small scraps. They’d been in plastic bins, roughly color-sorted, but having them laid out like a rainbow there, is definitely encouraging me to use them more.

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Not my usual view, I took a short trip for a bit of a mental health break. This is the view from a little B&B over cross-country trails.

Faster, higher, stronger has never been my motto, but a sport whose highest aspiration is gliding through the woods might be one I can appreciate, maybe it’ll even redeem all this snow. Once I get over the sore muscles from my first try at it anyways. :)


I’ll be back to sewing and regular life soon. Until then, I hope you’ve all had wonderful weekends.

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 I don’t buy charm packs – or layercakes, jelly rolls, fat quarter bundles or whatever precut configuration they’ve come up with now. I know I’m the odd ball on this, but I like to put my money just into the fabrics that I really like from a line. But, I made an exception for Dream On and bought charm packs. They’ve been sitting on my shelf, cheery and bright, waiting.

1. Juicy quilt, 2. Nicey Jane Charm Quilt: Front, 3. Moda Hunky Dory charm pack quilt using disappearing 9 patch quilt blocks, 4. P1040581, 5. Doll Quilt Swap 5 ready to go!, 6. Game Day Quilt, 7. Mini Quilt!, 8. A sweet little quilt, 9. Chocolate Momo quilt

I’ve decided to use them to make a quilt for myself – something fun and bright. But, now I  need to decide what to do with them.  I want something simple, and easy: this is not the fabric for fussy, fidgetty piecing. I think HST’s are about as complicated as I’m interested in.  

1. Spring, 2. Quilt for Baby Elise, 3. Audrey’s Quilt, 4. For my sister-in-law, 5. 18th June, 2010, 6. or this one?, 7. Braylin’s quilt, 8. Larger DQS Inspired Quilt 1, 9. swell zig zag quilt

I’ve got two charm packs, a little bit of yardage, and probably lots of white kona. So, I went searching through flickr for charm square patterns: and found lots of inspiration. Now I’m deciding between so many options: a nice problem to have.  :)

But, I’m open to more: do you have a favorite charm-friendly pattern?

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As I mentioned, my sewing resolution is to sew more for myself, and less because I “should” in some way.  It’s really a sub-set of a bigger resolution about prioritizing, and not taking on more than I can handle with inner calm and good humor.

Last year, I said I would make a  project from my scrap bin, or finish a WIP/UFO,  for every new project started. (And I largely stuck with that one)

Modern Red Accent Pillow Sham

Not a new pillow, but one I'm reclaiming from the shop to keep for myself


It got me thinking, does anyone else make resolutions about their sewing (or other craft/art/hobby etc.)? Or am I the only one? If you make them, what’s yours?

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Happy New Years!
Taking a quick look back at my 2010 flickr sream, as we get ready for 2011


1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 


and a few more…

1. <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/pioneervalleygirl/4624916811/”>Watercolors 3 .</a>, 2. <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/pioneervalleygirl/4613685256/”>MT Swap Preview</a>, 3. <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/pioneervalleygirl/4609336389/”>A belated mother’s day present…</a>, 4. <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/pioneervalleygirl/4588427979/”>Midnight – Tablerunner</a>, 5. <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/pioneervalleygirl/4579534011/”>Sunny Spot</a>, 6. <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/pioneervalleygirl/4548984391/”>(back) </a>, 7. <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/pioneervalleygirl/4491792808/”>Stars (or I really need to come up with a name for my quilt)</a>, 8. <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/pioneervalleygirl/4480023425/”>Work in Progress: Tablerunner</a>, 9. <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/pioneervalleygirl/4458179033/”>Birdies </a>, 10. <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/pioneervalleygirl/4436410234/”>Wonky Nine Patch .</a>, 11. <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/pioneervalleygirl/4425469431/”>Finished!</a&gt;, 12. <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/pioneervalleygirl/4341356282/”>Black and White Quilt</a>

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Seeing other sites…

Link-clicking, or side-bar widget noticing readers may already know this, but I’ve transitioned some of my shop to artfire. I’m not sure I’m breaking up with etsy (where I’ve been off and on for a while) for good, but definitely seeing other sites.


I like the site alot, but it’s less well known, so I thought I’d show off a collection of items from AF for your browsing and or shopping pleasure. Enjoy!

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Happy shopping

If any of you are getting up at early hours, or braving the crowds, or just have your credit card ready for some online deals. Happy shopping, on the official start of the holiday shopping season.

modern handmade table runner for christmas gift

To kick it off, I’m having a sale on handmade items. Enter BLOGFRIDAY2010 before 11/30 to get 20% off in my artfire shop.

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Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving! (Well, at least to everyone in the States)

I hope your days are filled with good food, good people and good memories. (Whether you celebrate American Thanksgiving or not)


orange squash for thanksgiving

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A quilt up there

Observant readers (or at least those who are reading this at wordpress, not a feed reader) will notice a new header (or banner, or whatever you call that photo up top)

The threadspools I put up when I started, where fine, a photo I had and liked, with a clean look and lots of white space for the name (you might also have noticed how much I like white space)  and I didn’t think much more about it.

cottage style quilt binding edge photograph

Until I had a really successful photo shoot with this quilt.  I looked at this photo, loved it and thought: ‘you know, that would make a good blog header, and hey, it actually has a quilt, not just thread’.  Something like this:


quilt photo blog header for pioneer valley girl

Imagine, I'd actually added text over there on the right



And, you know, I still like that photo. The composition’s great for a header. But, well, happy as I am with this quilt, it’s not really an accurate representation of most of my style. If I saw that photo, I’d expect something a lot more traditionally pretty, girly, cottage-y than you’re actually going to get here.

So I grabbed one of my favorite quilts off the back of the couch for a new photo shoot, and got a couple of art-y photo’s I liked.

mosaic of modern quilt photos

Mose of which, work terribly for banners. 190 x 760 is an unusual set of dimensions, and clearly not a size I naturally photograph for. Except, folded quilts are one of my favorite things ever, and conveniently oriented for a long, narrow banners.

Success – lots of white, splashes of solid blue-green, my favorite quilt, some open space for text, a quilt photo-header that’s actually representative.

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If you haven’t seen it, there’s a fabulous fundraiser going on at Handmade by Alisa

She writes “This is a fundraiser for Action Kivu, an organization in eastern Congo that runs a sewing workshop for victims of the conflict there. The conflict in Congo has taken the lives of over 5.4 million people since 1998. Rape is used as a weapon of war, with estimates putting the number of rapes in the hundreds of thousands.”

“Action Kivu provides some of the eastern Congo’s victims of violence with the opportunity to rebuild their lives on a foundation of hope, dignity, and economic self-sustenance. Their approach is spearheaded through two programs. First, they run a sewing workshop that teaches women who are victims of the conflict to sew. This leads them to be able to support themselves and their families. Secondly, they pay for children to go to school which is not free in Congo. It costs $40 a year, per child. That’s very little money that makes a big impact.”

More information here

She’s set a goal of $10,000 in donations – they were at a little over $7,500 when I gave yesterday, and a little over $9000.  That’s an amazing testament to the generosity of this online community.

I’ve been watching it all week, but finally got my act together to give yesterday:  if you can, head over there to contribute what you can. I know times are tough right now, but nothing reminds me of how fortunate I really am than making a donation, however small.

(And if you need an added incentive, she’s lined up some fabulous fabric prizes if you donate before Sunday 8/29 — think Heather Ross and Flea Market Fancy)

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