Tuesday, February 28, 2017



The other day I saw a handle cover for a pan (especially a cast iron) on sameliasmum.com.
I used some of her instructions and made my own. I drew a line around the handle on paper, added and inch all around and cut out for a template.
 Then I took (2) 5 x 7 scraps of batting (bigger than the template) and attached a scrap backing face side down to the batting for each one.  I then gathered a bunch of random scraps and started sewing them to the batting with the backing underneath. (QAYG style). I made 2 pieces: scrap top sewed to batting and backing underneath.

When I was done, I cut out a 1 1/4" x 4" strip of binding and attached it to one end on the back of each piece. Then folded the binding over to the front (scrappy side)  tucking in a 1/4 inch hem and sewed it down ON EACH PIECE. So, you now have 2 pieces with a binding at one short end.With a Frixion pen, I drew a sew line around the handle template on the backing side (leaving the bound end open). I pinned the 2 pieces right sides together and sewed around this line, turned the handle right side out and pressed.  I found it a little bulky so I just left as is at this point, but you could top stitch around the edge.

I don't normally write instructions, so I hope this is helpful to anyone who wants to make one. If not, please refer to the original tutorial listed above.

The fact that I only used scraps is wonderful and I will be making more. Since this was my first one, it took about an hour but I'm sure anyone could make these assembly style and make several in an hour. I plan to make my son a few  in different sizes for camping.

I confess, this was really fun and gave me an hour of creativity in a busy afternoon. If you make a handle cover, send me a photo!


Monday, February 27, 2017



So, this is the view from my bedroom when I am doing my yoga stretches. Isn't it pretty sans ac unit?

Obviously, we have beautiful blue skies most of the time here in Az.   I am always surprised when I go to other cities and their days have gray skies. This shot was taken with my Iphone in the A.M. in February with the sun barely up.

I try to stretch every morning or I pay for it later in these old joints and muscles.
Hope you have a lovely day!

Saturday, February 25, 2017



I just couldn't resist running outside with my phone and taking this photo to share with all of you.  We do have the most beautiful sunsets.

Hopefully, next time I'll have a few minutes to grab my camera! The clouds above were a pale pink like cotton candy.


Thursday, February 23, 2017



Thank you again Lee Ann for providing a positive outflow of ideas on Thursdays. 

Things I like:

1. Nurses. They have such discipline and dedication!It doesn't make a difference what field they are in.  I could never do their job and certainly not longer than an hour much less 12 hours. So, thank you to all of them. 

2. Teachers. I know this covers a broad spectrum, but it definitely takes a certain personality to have such patience and adaptability. Elementary school teachers are especially creative with the young minds! I have seen the wonderful teachers my special -needs grandson has had at his public school and I am very impressed. I look at a paper plate or scraps of construction paper and see just that. But they are able to encourage their students to create those items into  great works of art.  AMAZING.
 These dedicated teachers along with their assistants are very  intent that their "special" students have life skills for self sufficiency in the big world which is so important. Each student in a classroom of ten has individual differences and needs. Adapting their classroom and teaching skills is an art in itself.

3. Charm Packs ( or any precut that saves me time).  Often, they are at huge discounts at Missouri Star Quilt Co., but even at a regular price they are valuable. You can take a printed charm pack and solid charm pack to make a small quilt.   Plus, the resulting size is easier to quilt in my domestic machine. Of course, they don't take up much storage space either. Sometimes, I just go through all of the packages I have to see how beautiful they are. And yes, occasionally I am surprised I purchased a pack.

4. The artist Kaffe Fasset's fabric designs.  I only have a few precut bundles of his lines but hope to get more in the future. Here is a " Jelly Roll Race" top I sewed together in one afternoon. I just had to try that pattern. The colors are stunning. This is the 2013 "Cool" line.

I hope to someday make a long skirt or Palazzo pants with his fabrics. Wouldn't that be "cool". I am in the process of designing and sewing a quilt top with another Layer Cake package of his design. I will post that soon.

Hope you enjoyed the eye candy and don't forget to link up with Lee Ann for more "likeableness" : lapaylor.blogspot.com.

Have a great day!

Monday, February 20, 2017


Do you know what this is?

It's a tiny drone created by Japanese researchers to "help pick up the slack from insect pollinators". 
This is just a photo of the prototype.

I feel so old.

Evidently, the world's bee population is decreasing dramatically to the point one species is endangered.  This match book sized drone is covered in a sticky gel that doesn't dry out.  It would transport pollen among the flowers.

Science is amazing . So sad for the bees tho.  

Thursday, February 16, 2017


Greetings !
I was looking for something in one of my storage areas and found a set of quilt blocks put in a bag in a drawer. So sad. Totally forgot they were there.

I purchased the fabric years ago from Honey Be Good. The line is Serengeti by Birch Fabrics. It is 100% organic cotton. I love the prints! I knew this is one I wanted for myself, not a gift.

This is one block on the design wall. I used a pattern from " twolittlebanshees.com" called Easy Fat Quarter Cot Quilt.  so so easy.

I must have gotten interrupted in the creative process of making something for myself to have stashed it all away. I finally sewed the 3 columns together and this is what is on the design wall now.

Unfortunately, you'll need to click on the photo to see the detail cause it's a little bit small photo.

I sashed and bordered it with Grunge gold and red. I love it. Still need to find a backing in the stash.
I might even free motion quilt it. I have only tried that once before but it was on a table runner.  It turned out  fine but I was a nervous wreck that I would ruin my project. I usually stitch in the ditch, do straight lines or half inch cross hatch, maybe 2 inch cross hatch or circle quilt with my Janome built in quilting foot.

Hope you can enjoy these lovely prints. So different
Have a great day!

Things I like Feb 16

These Thursday posts are such fun. Thank you Lee Ann.

These are things I like right now:

1. Lemon pound cake at Starbucks. I try to stay away but succumb about once a month.

2. Freebies at  MODA.  The  website is :blog.modafabrics.com...Just click on Fun and Free.  Great patterns, printable tags or labels, etc.

3.Freebie Friday at Craftsy. If you go to their blog section: craftsy.com/blog and subscribe (it's free), they will send you newsletters . On Friday, they have all kinds of  ideas and free patterns.

Do you see a "pattern" here?  hee hee. This brings me to my next favorite:

4. Quilting websites and bloggers who provide free patterns and tutorials to us quilting infants.
I was surprised when I started quilting 4 years ago what an expensive hobby this is for me. I am retired (so far) and living on a fixed income. Luckily, my first quilting teacher convinced me to purchase high quality fabric.  Since that time 4 years ago, I admit I did try once or twice to use inexpensive fabric which bled in the wash or stretched out of shape when pressed. Unfortunately, this was discovered after the quilt was completed.  I only pre-wash  larger than half yard cuts of fabric.
I learned my lessen to only purchase high quality fabric, then I don't have to worry about the end result.  It does however, come at a price and like other purchases in real life, you need to know your brand and distributor.
But, I digress. To take a class at a quilt shop is around $40 (plus materials) or if you purchase a pattern it costs anywhere from $6-$20!  Creativity shouldn't be so costly or sometime  not a possibility for some folks.   It's so much easier and fun  to watch a fellow sewist complete a project if it's free.
Thank you to all of you who have provided these choices for us.

I hope you will,link up with Lee Ann today.:lapaylor.blogspot.com  for more "things I like posts.
Have a great day!

Tuesday, February 14, 2017


Today is a "lovely day". I received this gift from my  pumpkin, exceptional young man, comedian, grandson, Thomas.

I'm sure you can see the envelope says "Gramma". On the inside he wrote, " I love to play cars with you". SOOOO CUTE.

He is 12 and special. We have such fun together. Our family is truly blessed.

Hope you all have a lovely day.

Monday, February 13, 2017


Since I first started quilting, I have tried to quilt for charity at least several times a year. I donated 3 in 2015 but only one in 2016. I just got so busy making quilts and stuff for family members, I forgot last year to make more. This year I hope to do better.
One of my favorite quilt blocks is the Scrap Strip block. I use 10 inch foundation papers from MSQC and just sit with my color designated  containers of scrap leftovers from my projects and a jelly roll of one inch black or white and start making blocks.  It is the most relaxing (while creating) form of sewing I can do.  I use the black or white strips for the center.  The black roll  is used with all my dark scraps and the white roll  is used with lighter color strips.   I sew the roll strip on the center diagonal of the 10 inch paper and then attach scraps to either side. When I think I have enough blocks for a quilt, I sit and tear off the paper, sew the blocks together, attach batting (usually left over pieces stitched together), backing and binding.  You must try it because it is fun! And, pretty much free.

Here's a photo of a quilt done this way (about 50 x 50 inches) that I donated to Project Linus in 2016.

It has dancing monkeys in it. Just sayin. It's a little dark but a boy would like it.

Here are 3 I donated in 2015 to Az Blankets for Kids. They provide blankets to kids going thru fires, Air Evac, Phoenix Children's Hospital, etc.etc.

They're all made from charm packs which are my favorite precuts. I try to make them about 40 inch square. The first quilt was made from charms with 1 inch sashing all around. I think the blue quilt was a disappearing 9 patch and the "wild" green one was full of animals, forests and wild things  charms randomly sewn together.

 If you haven't made donated quilts, I recommend trying this. It feels good to give back to the community doing something you love.
Not to say it isn't difficult (for a few minutes) parting with such lovely quilts.

I hope you enjoyed this post.

Friday, February 10, 2017


My very first post here was from our local nursery and I'm happy to say my new plants are doing well considering we had a freeze 2 days after I potted my new plants! The early morning freeze lasted 3 days so all the plants were covered in sheets.  I was thrilled when I removed the covers to see it had kept them almost in a hothouse atmosphere.

This first lovely is the Bellis plant, a vibrant red blooming plant. It has doubled in size since I planted it a week ago. The instructions didn't state whether to keep the blooms cut but I probably will remove a few in a couple days. It is, however, in full sun as the card suggests. I should call it my Button plant.

This is my Snow Princess Alyssum which is such a perfect name. Delicate, sweet aroma and pure.
Alyssum has always been one of my favorites but this is the first time I have had a trailing or hanging type. LOVE IT.

I saved the best for last. This is one of three Lavender plants I have around my home. Love the smell and the plant. My nursery guide informed me last summer to not trim the lavender for the first year and boy, was he correct. The blooms do not stop. I believe this is the Italian Lavender plant. I don't think you can see the hummingbird EATING WHILE I WAS FLASHING PHOTOS (top left corner), so i enlarged that portion below:

He was so cute and the same purple tones as the blooms. Just sayin.
All of my plants are in pots because many times during the year I need to move them to a different sun exposure or I just need to redecorate. And since I have rock yards all around this house, I wouldn't dream of trying to dig a hole in the ground.  It's just too difficult to penetrate the ground.

Hope you enjoyed pieces of my patio garden and have a great day!

Thursday, February 9, 2017


Here are my "things I like" for today:

1. Flowers I grow that can be cut for my kitchen table. The sweet smell of Stock or Carnations is a nice start for the day.  They last longer than store bought and I don't have to wait till I'm shopping for more. Of course, here in Az, the growing season  only lasts for short periods in the spring and fall.

2. A refill on my prescription even tho "there are no refills" printed on the medicine bottle! How kind the pharmacist is to go the extra mile for me to have the medicine I need. Forget the fact I should have followed up with my doctor for a new refill.

3. Speaking of old prescription bottles, I save them to store old needles and rotary blades for the trash so those sharp tools do not hurt someone.

4. My spring loaded rotary cutter instead of the "click-on" types.
As long as I hold the bottom black piece to the handle, the blade extends and I can cut.  I would not remember to "click off" the other type. I have had this cutter since I first started quilting 4 years ago. 

5. Peoria Az. It's about 15 minutes from downtown Phoenix, smaller in population and very community oriented. We have great parks and a theater minutes from my home. There is a nice Community Center which provides services and activities for everyone. I am only about a mile from Sun City, so my neighborhood is  quieter  than I have ever lived in before. 

6. The TV  drama," This Is Us". It's on NBC  Tuesday evenings. It is the most realistic display of  families in our American society. The cast makes me feel as if I personally know the characters. The story line switches back and forth from the 70's/80's to current day which is fantastic because you see the raising of the kids to adults and the relationship of the parents. We look forward to watching it every week.

That's my quick list for today. Go to lapaylor.blogspot.com for more fun likeable lists and have a great day.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017


Did anyone see this photo on CRAFTSY?  It's so cool.(pun intended)

The Wildlife SOS Elephant Conservatory and Care Center staff makes oversize coats for the elephants due to the freezing temperatures in India. Who knew it got so cold in India?  With so much unpleasantness going on this world, here are wonderful people giving their time and energy to make sure these beautiful creatures are safe and comfortable. I wonder how much yardage this must have taken to make these "shirts". 
I just had to share this.
Happy "Hump" day.

Monday, February 6, 2017

Lavender Sachets

I made these small sachets for Valentines gifts for friends and family. I made 7 in an afternoon! The instructions are on the site: sew4home.com.  This is a fun site with such a variety of projects. I filled my sachets with rice and lavender essential oil. My sachets were cut from left- over charm precuts.  Aren't they cute?

Since I didn't have a small gift box or bag to give one to my daughter who is so special, I made one. I had a pretty scrap of fabric (about 10x18) and trimmed it with pinking shears, cut off the selvage for a ribbon then folded it in half, sewed up the sides and attached the ribbon to the outside seam. Perfect.

This worked out so well, I'll use my scraps in the future to make some small gift bags!
I hope you all have a wonderful Monday!

Friday, February 3, 2017


This is just a quick post to show you our forecast for the next week!

Gonna have to get the shorts out!
Hope your week is looking good!


I've been wanting a new pillowcase for my bed so I searched thru my stash and found this lovely striped fabric  and a peach for the border. This pattern/tutorial  is from MSQC and from start to finish took about 30 minutes.  I love Missouri Star Quilt Co..  Jenny's tutorials are so easy and fun for this newbie. I have purchased a ridiculous  sizable amount of fabric there- especially pre-cuts.

 I find the standard cases from a store are too short and the next size too long but this is just right, a higher quality cotton and so pretty. Yes, I'm very pleased with myself from yesterday's "hard work".
I hope you may be inspired to try this simple fun tutorial.  Send me a photo if you do! I find her tutorials on Facebook and You Tube under MSQC.
Enjoy this day!

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Things I like February 2:

1. My Kolanchoe plant. The pink blossoms were all trimmed from my plant on the right. It's about a foot tall. There were so many blossoms, it was top heavy. I need to split the plant in 2 but I'm afraid to try it. She lives on the windowsill facing north and I cannot tell you how easy this is to care for!
2.Basting of a completed quilt. It's such a relief to have it over with and accurate. My small sewing area doesn't allow for a large table and this old body can't get up off the floor so I have to tape 2 folding tables together.
3. The word "sewist". Fancy smanchy but covers a lot.
4. Impressions from my 12 year old grandson. I actually laugh out loud which only encourages him more. He is such a joy!

I hope you enjoy my first attempt at posting "Things I like". 
Have a wonderful day!
P. S. Please link to LeeAnn Paylor at http://lapaylor.blogspot.com/ to see more fun "Things I like". She has a wonderful blog I have been following for awhile. 

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Today, I learned how to use PIXLR EXPRESS. I was feeling "out of the loop" on this one but managed to learn a few photo edits. So bear with me on this latest photo:

This is a large table topper in my kitchen. A Dresden Plate made from left over Layer Cakes. It's very cheery in the spring and summer!