Saturday, August 30, 2008

Carolina Girls - Orange and Garnet

Clemson Pawmetto Reversible Pinafore

Check out this reversible pinafore for your Clemson girl. Sizes range from 12 months to 4T. See my calicodaisy shop for items ready to ship or e-mail me to custom order your own. I have a Tiger Cheerleader, too, that can be substituted.

If you're not a Clemson fan, one can be fashioned in your school colors as well!

USC Girl Embroideries

USC girls (University of South Carolina), you're next! Palmetto Trees and a Gamecock Cheerleader are ready for you, too.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Blog Booty!

Booty: A rich gain or prize - per Merriam-Webster Dictionary.

You know I mean blog prizes, right? I won twice this month, pretty much thanks to the same girl.

lemon tree studio freebies

Shelly of "my lily eden" has been good to me. Somehow I came across her blog and lemon tree studio etsy store a couple of months ago, and have been buying her pretty scrapbook art. When I had my open house, I bought 200 of her gift tags as a special order at the last minute, as seen above on the right, for goody bags I handed out to my guests. She made those up right away and had them here on time. Every Friday is "Freebie Friday" at her blog, and she features something new she has come up with. A couple of weeks ago, I won this little hooty owl fall set. Very pretty and full of little things that aren't pictured, like buttons and brads, etc. A nice little package for her to put together every week as a giveaway.

Last week, Shelly participated in a big blog giveaway celebration at On The Dot Creations and directed her readers over there. On-The-Dot rounded up her friends to participate and gave away more than 30 prizes. I won the earrings above. Perfect. I have had a beaded necklace for more than a year and haven't found earrings to match, and I think the turquoise here will make it a set now. The earrings were created by Dancing Moon. She has a big summer sale going on in her shop right now.

covered buttons

Camille and I have a new project together. She would really like to go on a mission trip with London City Mission next summer, and I'd like to go with her so we can stay a week or so longer and sight see and hopefully meet a couple bloggers I've come to enjoy reading. To save up for the expenses of the sightseeing portion of the trip, we decided to make the covered button ponytail holders and clips, as it is something we can do together or she can alone. I made some this morning. They are so cute and sort of addicting to make! I made both fabric covered ones and embroidered out some kitty faces. I made the ones in the middle for the embroidered covered button swap last spring, and I've been meaning to do something more formal for my etsy shop since then. Our high school mascot is the wildcat, and they use a paw for an icon, so I'm embroidering out paws in her school colors for the buttons, so she will have to sell to her schoolmates. Obviously, the sky is the limit here, as we can embroider almost any idea on fabric, including monograms. So, that's a little different than just fabric covered ones. Also, I'm not taking the shank off the button for the ponytail holders. That way they can be used as a button if desired.

Monday, August 25, 2008

A Spring Chicken Set

Polka Dot Spring Chicken Set

When I bought this spring chicken fabric, I had no idea what I would do with it, but I loved that the chicken drawings were "dressed" in the black and white polka dots that match my black and white polka dot fabric. One friend ordered an apron made from the chicken fabric, but I didn't think anyone would look good with chickens all over, so I fashioned a new pattern of a simple chef apron and added a sort of swingy ruffle at the bottom - not fussy but just enough to add a little glam. I embroidered this darling spring chicken at the bodice to top it off.

My friend also wanted some potholders to match. I was glad to have the chance to make some, however, I'm not good at them yet. I haven't figured out how to make nice corners and then slip the thinsulate inside for a quick job of it. I made two that look awful. So, I "quilted" the third, as above, and then edged around the potholder with double-fold bias tape and had to hand sew the other side of the tape down. So, two hours later ... I just don't have time to make the rest. I sent her the pretty quilted one and stopped there.

I have packaged the rest of the embroidered squares, backing fabric, border strips, bias tape, and thinsulate together into two KITS. Each kit includes enough fabric and thinsulate to make TWO potholders. Please check out the calicodaisy shop if you would like to make some for your kitchen.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Binding Today

bindings 082308

I'm quilt binding away while Camille tries her hand at cutting out and sewing a dress today. I'm so glad she wants to sew. I've been encouraging her for years and sent her to classes, but she has never just taken it on by herself. I have the blogs to thank. So many bloggers are hip and young making such trendy things, and she realizes we can produce that right here. I forward the links to her so she can just peruse through on her own time, and I think that's made an impression on her. She really likes the Simplicity 3835 top I made earlier in the summer and wants another with fabrics like those we have seen on the blogs.

Anyway, I took a little poll rearding what color quilt bindings to offer. Red and orange were tops. Black surprised me the most, though. Jean suggested black, and I was just going to respond back to her and say, "Black! Really?" Right then, an e-mail arrived from the local quilt shop owner who said, "Brown and turquoise are the popular colors right now but definitely black." Thus, I took my 40%-off Hobby Lobby coupon and picked up some black this week -- and charcoal, too, because it looks so lush.

Did you see the quilt pattern Kathy designed at Pink Chalk Studio? She used the Denyse Schmidt cheater quilt panels available at Pink Chalk Fabrics and put together a quilt kit for the same look. The quilt pattern is free to download. She used Kona cotton in "curry" for her quilt binding, though does not offer this in her kit. The curry is so pretty against her fabrics. I didn't find any curry but did pick up papaya, as above, and it looks pretty great next to all the calicos sitting in my ironing stack. I'll be cutting and seaming those colors this weekend.

I know if you are a crafty one, you might not need to purchase pre-made quilt binding. However, you might remember me if you have a quilting friend who doesn't have the time or thinks she might not be able to put it all together and refer her to my calicodaisy etsy shop. If you do refer anyone, ask them to let me know who sent them so I can thank you, too.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

I Know, I Know... You Were Right!


I wept, I carried on, and I even got invited out to lunch. And then HE called. My boy had to come to our side of town to get his hair cut ROTC style and do some shopping. I invited him to join my friend and me for lunch, which he did - he likes to be fed! While we sat there, I noticed a couple of families sitting at the table near us, and the kids were dressed in the uniforms of my son's private elementary school. Of course, I had to show him off to those moms and tell them how well all the kids out of Michael's elementary school had done getting into colleges. Then he had to do a little clothes shopping, and I suggested he come back by the house afterward so he could wash everything and not worry about it for the next week. That worked, too, and I fed him again - a meatloaf sandwich. Then my husband came home and noticed the dirty Jeep (which the son should be washing more often, but...), and the nice dad gave it a quick scrub. So, Michael went back to the dorm fed twice and adorned with new washed clothing, a shiny Jeep, and a handsome new haircut. A very good ending to my emotional morning. He just started his first college class this morning, too.

Above you see the beauty when she came home from school. My husband took her shopping this week as part of her 16th birthday present. Dads are better to shop with at the mall. Moms are looking for value; Dads are looking for the quickest way out - let's pay and go! Camille picked up some lovely new things. I'm so glad we are back to the 80's! I really don't worry about her shopping without me anymore, because I'm so familiar with the style and it's much more demure for our girls. She told me that she was walking down the math hall, and the teachers were going on about some of the girls' clothes that day at school and then saw her and grabbed her. She was nervous because we had just wondered before school if the skirt was long enough and laughed about her getting sent home for it not coming below her fingertips - public school, yes! - as she has such long arms. Anyway, the math teachers nabbed her and said, "Now this is the way EVERY girl should dress! Perfect!" So, she got to show off her GAP skirt, Hollister top, and very cool Lands' End shoes. We just saw these in an e-mail ad Tuesday morning, and I told her to get her dad to stop by Sears and try on Lands' End shoes to see what size she was at least, and then we could order them - never thinking the style had already arrived there. These are worth every single $39 that they cost. They are cute, sturdy, cushioned. (Click here to see the whole shot; the mosaic cut her off.) Much better for her feet than the trendy garbage I usually have to settle for at Kohl's or Payless, etc. Now, not always, but you know, even my 9 West pumps way back used to be comfortable. Now there is nearly nothing between the foot and the ground, and I worry for the health of her feet. But this is a happy posting, so I'll leave it there.

Thank you, my dear blog friends and my dear "real-life" friends, for encouraging me yesterday. I was very distraught and really couldn't talk myself out of it. I am happy for this forum and all of you who go before me and know: They will come home. They will do well away from us. They Will Remember To Call Their Mothers !!!!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

I Miss My Son!

My Little Man

Can I tell you how much I miss my son right now? I didn't sleep well last night, and I woke up crying this morning. This is the first time in 14 years I didn't get him ready for the first day of school. I couldn't sleep last night because I thought he could be anywhere. Is he in his dorm room bed? Is he visiting with friends? Did he get a wild idea to run to Wal-Mart at midnight? I don't know. Will he get up in time for college classes? Will he make nice friends? Will he remember to be kind when he is frustrated? Will he remember that he and his sister are my #1 reasons in life right now? I don't know. Will he stand on the firm foundation we laid for him to make good decisions and to know that he has a purpose in life? Will He Remember To Call His Mother ???? !!!!

It's a horrible feeling. I didn't know. He and I were such snobs about going to school near home in South Carolina, especially right down the road. No way! One should go off to college, see new things, meet new people! Thank goodness budgets, scholarships, and the best international business school and language department around convinced us that USC is the best place for him to be, and he is right down the road. I might have been a basketcase right now if he was in another city or state. My heart goes out to you moms with kids far away, although you may have been better adjusted for this than I!

I started practicing right away not calling him too much, although he has only been gone four days!!! However, it isn't like he is at camp and is coming home soon. He's embarking on his grown-up life. My part is all done! Monday we talked a few times and said good-night that evening. Yesterday, I talked to him in the morning when he called for directions, and we were frustrated with each other because he hadn't originally followed my very clear instructions (laughing at myself here). So, as we hung up from that frustration, I told myself I was ridiculous. If this were 20 years ago, he wouldn't be calling me on a cell phone and would be figuring out where to go by himself. I need to let him get on with life and not be a helicopter mom - I really love that term. So, no good-night call last night, but a couple of hours were spent in the easy chair feeling sorry for myself panicking about what he could possibly be doing right at that moment. Then to bed for a restless sleep and waking up ready to weep as my beautiful girl readied herself for high school today. As usual, we headed out and picked up her friend, and I dropped them off for their first day of school. I have a lovely THREE more years with my girl at home, and then ... I guess we'll be talking then if we are all still blogging.

I need a drink. I'm going out for a cold one - Extra-Large Diet Coke, light ice, thank you.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Summer Ends, New Beginnings

Summer is winding down to just these first two days of the week, and then school begins again. I always think of the beginning of the school year as the real New Year. Fresh books and clothes and classes and fall. I love this time of year.

We had a big, busy summer with lots of activity, the biggest things being a high school graduation, a Sweet 16 party, and my son off to his freshman year at university.

Here we are this weekend before dropping him off one last time at the dorm. Now that the time is finally here, I'm glad he chose the university right down the road. I saw lots of mamas and sons saying weepy good-byes as parents headed back to their homes far away, but I wasn't one of them - this time! My son is living in the dorms, and the campus is so beautiful and full of opportunity. He will learn to live with others and share a bathroom down the hall (not I - I chose my university because there were dorm room suites with a bath in between!). He'll learn to plan his time wisely and find out what new interests he has in his academic life and where those interests will lead him. He is going to be a German and Russian language major with a minor in something else but isn't decided yet. That will come. He had a great high-school German education and can get by pretty well reading and speaking the language. His new roommate and family were lovely, and we got to spend a good amount of time visiting on move-in day. I feel very secure leaving him there - except that the air conditioning vent is leaking, the room is dripping with humidity, and there was filthy mold and yuck all around the air filter. We are dealing with that quickly. I'm worried for the boys' health and the effects on the computers. Otherwise, good ol' dorm life has arrived for our son.

Sweet 16!

My daughter had a very sweet, Sweet 16 birthday party last month. She has wonderful friends and had a great time with all of them. Isn't the cake awesome? She picked out a cake style online, and my friend created one for her. There's my husband. How is it that men can always find a place to sleep, no matter what is going on around them? Imagine what he will be like the night of her wedding party! -- some day, wwwaaayyy down the road, please.

Quilt Binding

I was so happy that my handmade bias tape sold so quickly. That gave me the courage to wrap up some quilt binding now. I used Kona cotton in the color "Lagoon." I've listed it in the etsy shop. We'll see how that goes, and then I'll do more. Next I plan on making bias tape with some fab fabrics and holiday prints.
What do you think is the most popular Kona cotton color for quilt binding? I was wondering what color I should make up next.

Friday, August 15, 2008

South Carolina Embroidery Designs

South Carolina Palmetto Designs

We're moving our son into the Unversity of South Carolina dorm tomorrow for his freshman year! We are very excited and nervous. We have about an even number of friends heading downtown for USC and upstate to Clemson to move their kids in, too! I'm quite popular right now with embroidery orders for both sides. A duvet cover for one gal, towels for my son, and bibs for babies of college alumni. Here are a number of South Carolina big college themed embroideries I have available. They all embroider out very pretty and are nice and bright and very substantial. I have several sizes of the palmetto tree from 4 inches down to tiny ones that can work on a polo. Please visit the mishflicks site to see my finished work and more embroidery styles in the Palmetto Embroidery Design set to see if there is something there you'd like to have fashioned in your team colors.

Clemson PAW-metto Tree Bibs

Here are some bibs I embroidered out last night. You'll find these in the calicodaisy etsy shop. Take it easy, USC fans! I have to take my orders from whence they come! If you would like your team tree or cheerleader with a name included on any particular item, just e-mail me from here or convo me from etsy so we can discuss a custom order.

Reversible Pinafore - Sizes 12 months to 4T

Soon I'm going to list this reversible pinafore design I sewed up this week. I've already bought appropriate school colors for a solid on one side with a monogram or design and a coordinating calico for the other. Contact me soon for custom orders! This pinafore will obviously work with any set of colors, holidays, or seasons - with or without embroidery. The top can be worn with a shirt underneath or without. Sizes are 12 months to 4T.

All the above designs look great on shirts, children's dresses and tops, towel sets, golf towels, linens, etc. Now that I have the new serger, I can even whip up a set of napkins for tailgating!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

A Handmade Bias-Tape Production

Quarter-Inch Bias Tape Cherries

Here is something new for the calicodaisy shop. Handmade, 1/4-inch, double-fold bias tape. The fabrics have been washed, dried, ironed, and then cut on the bias for some extra pretty trimmings.

This was a HOT project though, steaming!, from all that ironing. I think I'll make the next round the half-inch size. However, I think this size will be perfect for aprons, dishtowels, potholders, or trimming on a little one's dress.

UPDATE!! - I am thrilled to say that my first bias tape listing sold within two hours! I have one more 3-yard length and just put that one in the shop. Thank you for all your nice comments. I really do like to iron fabric, and making the bias tape is quite a nice project. -- Michele

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Destashing Fabric Scraps - Quilt Squares

Destashing Fabric Scraps - Quilt Squares

The wheels have been turning in my mind thinking of ways to pay off my new little friend - who I have yet to turn on - that I bought last week. While cleaning off my fabric table the other night and staring at my overfilled, laundry basket of scraps, it occurred to me that I could put together bags of pre-cut fabric squares and place in my etsy shop. So, while watching my favorite Law & Order CI Sunday evening and The Closer (thank yeeewww!) Monday evening, I organized two baggies of yummy fabric, as pictured above. Notice there are some Amy Butler, Erin McMorris, and Heather Ross fabrics in there as well as a bunch of fabrics picked up at my favorite quilt and fabric shops, both online and in-store. All the fabrics are a very nice weight suitable for quilting.

My fabrics are always washed and dried as soon as I walk in the house and then ironed and folded nice before putting away. One bag has #100 count of 2.5-inch squares. The other bag is filled with #50 squares measuring 4.25 inches. Both are listed in my etsy shop.

A quick-use idea for the larger squares: Sew four over four to create a 16-inch square pillowtop. Add a pretty ruffle or piping to make it gorgeous. Sew five over five squares, and you should have a 20-inch pillow top. I think I have that right. If not, sew together anyway, and you make your own custom pillow form to fit! I think I'm going to add that to my to-do list and see how it works out.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Fresh From The Sewing Room

Flower Applique Monogrammed Bib

Yesterday I showed you an embroidery/applique design I just purchased and I only had the shop example to show you. Last night, I embroidered out the flower on a bib to see how it looks. Pretty cute! Here it is on a bib. This "S" bib is for sale if you would like it. I am going to post it at the calicodaisy etsy shop. This is a generously sized bib, just right for a baby moving towards a year old. Don't forget my little treat offer mentioned on yesterday's posting.


Toddler Apron 2T to 4T

Another finished product is this darling toddler apron. (I know, it looks like a halter top here!) It is sized for 2T to 4T, and I used this great fabric I was crazy for at the quilt shop a couple of months ago. I was thinking some kind of bag or skirt for me, but I love how the cool, retro fabrics look in a little one's clothing. The apron would look great paired with a tee-shirt and worn over jeans for a sort of chic retro baby look. I sure wish I had a baby to dress in the styles that are out today - especially now that I have all this technology! Plus, I need a baby just to model my creations, but none are around right now for that either.

I'm going to put this apron in the etsy shop, too, later this morning.

My friend, the owner of the wire dress form I have in my studio photos, bought this short wire dress form for me to hang on the wall. At first I was just thinking of it decoratively, however, other than the bustline behind this toddler apron, it looks just right to show off clothing and aprons. She bought it at TJ Maxx. Next time I take pictures, I'll have to get a shot of this without anything hanging on it.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Apron Swap and TREAT BELOW

Halloween Apron Swap 2008

Here is the apron I created for the Booming Aprons "Beat The Heat / Halloween" apron swap last month. The theme could be Halloween or fall. My partner was Sarah at the gypsymermaidlife blog. We were actually partners earlier in the year for a banner swap.

Sarah wanted a Halloween theme, so after discussing some details with her, this is what I came up with. I really thought it turned out great. It's not cartoony but is definitely a Halloween apron.

I chose to have a fall style. Sarah did an excellent job sewing her first apron for me. She put such great details into the design, and I love the fall fabric. She made a nice sized potholder for me, too, and sent a very pretty recipe card with directions for some yummy Pumpkin Pie Squares.

What do you think of this new applique-embroidery design I purchased? Just the "M" here, but I have the whole alphabet, of course. I'm thinking how darling it will look on anything but especially on t-shirts appliquéed with fabrics that correspond to a skirt or pants.

Flower Applique Monogrammed Bib

Here is the flower applique embroidered out on a little bib.

Above is an outfit I made for a friend's daughter with just a letter applique. Are you making your girl a twirly skirt or ruffle-hemmed pants? Wouldn't you like a matching tee to go along to make a set? If so, here are some options to make that happen:

* If you use a fabric that can be purchased online, let me know. I'll get some of the fabric, purchase a tee in your daughter's size, embroider, and send back to you.

* You could send me a square of your fabric and a tee and just have me embroider for you.

* If this isn't the perfect thing for your project, just e-mail me and let me know what design you're looking for, and we can put something together. Especially if you are sewing for a boy, we can do as above and go with a corresponding design.

The price for the above would just depend on which direction we are taking with the design and whether or not I need to purchase the fabrics and/or t-shirt.

*** TREAT IDEA: Let's have a drawing by Tuesday evening - I'll draw a name Wednesday morning. If you are sewing for a child, comment on this idea and tell me what you are making for your son or daughter or grandchild. I'll draw a name and will buy the t-shirt and embroider a design for you to correspond with the outfit. In return, please let me have a picture of the set together so I can post and show my blog readers that this will be a really great collaboration!
I hope to hear from you.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

My First Etsy Sale

Remember when I was gushing over my open house in July? Well, after opening night, I came upstairs to find that I had made my first etsy sale! That just added to my delirium through the weekend! Since the customer was from South Carolina, as am I, I just figured that she knew me, heard of me, or saw my name in a list of etsy vendors from the state. No, she said she searched etsy and picked me! Marvelous. This is the custom pillow she ordered. It went out today, and I included a little treat for her as my #1 Etsy customer. I'm happy to report that there is a #2 Etsy customer on the horizon as well. We are going back and forth on ideas for her design right now. I'm so glad I found blogland!

The pillow is a 12" x 16" size with an envelope back. See my little label on the back of the pillow? I purchased labels from FancyWeaver last month. I like them, but the fabric runs when the needle goes through. Hmmmm. I may go a different direction next time, however, they were very gracious to work with through ebay and then email, and they met the delivery date. Very affordable, too. Thanks for hearing about FancyWeaver goes to Old School Acres who always has such great ideas.