Our Spring Dining Room

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I’m too chicken to drive whenever it’s snowing, or if there is snow/ice on the roads. I haven’t been antique shopping since before December. So when we had a little break with clear roads this weekend I was outta here!  I drove to all my favorite antique spots and to the local green spot to get some springy plants to scatter around our house for some much needed cheering up. Enough of this cold snowy winter I tell ya!!

This cheery pot of daffodils became the center of the spring table arrangement in my big dough bowl.  I added some moss balls, eggs, and cabbage heads.

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I found many new ironstone pieces at really good prices while I was out. Here is one of the little servers on the plate rail. I threw in some faux sprigs in the mercury glass vase.

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On the other side, I placed a couple clock faces. One I found at an antique store, and the big one was from Hobby Lobby. I took it out of it’s frame and used the frame in the dry sink.  Guess how much it was?  7 dollars.  STEAL!!! =)   I also found this sweet milk-glass vase at antique and  filled it with a real rosemary plant. The little chalkboard sticker came from Michael’s dollar bin.

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I bought a few clay pots and white washed them and used the little chalkboard stickers on them.  Here is one on the dry sink.  I can’t remember what kind of plant this is.  Hope I don’t kill it! LOL

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The rest of the dry sink has a frame I found in the basement, and the clock face frame with a mossy wreath, bunny and faux flower arrangement.

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My next plant went into an enamel Tea can.  The ironstone platter was another find on Saturday.

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The hutch always looks pretty much the same I just tried to spring it up a little.

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And my very favorite thing I bought?  This framed sheep print I’ve had my eye on for over a year.  Every time I visit the antique store where it came from I always stare at it and long to buy it.  I could never make myself spend the money they were asking for it because of the condition it’s in. But I finally bit the bullet and I am so glad I did.  I love it, even in it’s tattered state. It’s perfect for spring.

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Lastly I hung up my new quilt I made for our sew along.

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I’ll be back with the rest of the spring decorating and the other fun things I picked up on my shopping spree!

Crossing my fingers for spring to get here!!

Later gators,

Melissa

Linking to Wow Us Wendnesdays

Oh, Captain Wentworth! A free pattern and sew along

I’ve been working on something fun the last few days for us to sew together ! It is my interpretation of Jane Austen’s famous diamond quilt, pieced by Jane, her mother, and sister.

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There is a wonderful article about the quilt written by quilt historian Barbara Brackman here CLICK

Like many before me, I’m an avid Jane Austen fan, and have read  all of her  books and watched all the PBS films over and over.  My favorite Austen man is Captain Wentworth from Persuasion ….ahhhh so dreamy.  So that’s what I’m calling this quilt.

I’m not finished designing it yet but I wanted to give you a heads up to prepare in case you want to sew along.

Here’s the quilt so far:

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It will finish somewhere around 30 x 50, so it will make a nice little wall hanging.  I’m going to add some applique in the center triangle, and finish the pieced border, then I’ll start posting the directions here on the blog.

I cut way to0 many triangles so I will probably offer a few kits if you would like to use the same fabric as I did.

Okay so what do we need?

1. VERY HELPFUL, but not mandatory is the Marti Michell 2 1/2 inch stripper template.

41EqIcfCCiL._SY300_If you don’t have this, and don’t want to purchase this handy dandy tool, you can still use your regular ruler with the 60 degree angle mark, but the tool will make piecing the quilt a lot easier because the template ruler has squared off points that help you line up your triangles.

2.  About 1 and 1/2 yards of white cotton

3. A variety of 2 1/2 inch strips of your color choice cotton prints for center of quilt, and 1 1/2 inch strips for the border.

I hope you’ll join me!

Later gators,

Melissa

Blueberry Buckle Quilt Pattern

The pattern is finished and added to my patterns page.

It’s a fun one to make! The background is Marcus Brothers aged muslin which is so deliciously old looking!!

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Finished size is 48.5 x 58.5

$7.00 PDF pattern

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Have a great weekend!!!

Melissa

Quilts and Clocks

Hi friends! Are you surviving the Polar Vortex? If you are reading this somewhere warm, be thankful! =)  The kids just went back to school today in my neighborhood after 4 canceled school days in a row! I’m sure we are well over the allotted snow days now after having 4 or 5 days cancelled the previous polar vortex go-around as well.  We are not out of the woods yet with a huge snow storm heading our way next week.

YIKES.

Here’s what the sidewalk looks like in front of our house already:

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The snow is up to their shoulders!! Any more and it will be over their heads. LOL It’s kind of fun actually. We just make sure and stock up on supplies when the roads are okay to drive.

With it being tough to get out and about, I have been staying warm inside quilting.

In my effort to lighten and brighten I made a white background album block quilt for the piano room.

album block quilt cornbread and beans quiltingI really want to paint the walls white in here, but will have to wait to dig out to go buy paint. In the meantime, I thought a brighter quilt would help out.

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Did you notice my  recent acquisition of vintage alarm clocks?

Here’s a closer look:

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I love them!  I talked an antique dealer into letting me have 6 of them for $40.00!! Mom and Dad and I spotted them while Mom was home for a visit from Texas.  There were 50 or so in boxes and when I first asked about them he said they were 10- 15 bucks apiece. I said, ” watch this Dad, I’m going to take these up there and ask if he’ll take 40 bucks.”  I’m getting to be a wheeler dealer! Ha haha

I’m trying to finish writing instructions for a new pattern called Blueberry Buckle I’ll be putting out next week.  Here’s a sneak peek:

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Doesn’t it remind you of a blueberry desert? Yumm.

Later gators!

Melissa

Afterglow

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What a fabulous Holiday season it was.  I had a hard time letting go, so much so that I just took down the decorations yesterday!! That might be my record for leaving it all out.  It just felt so darn cozy.

Alas, it’s time to move on to a new year.  When it was all down, I must admit it did feel nice to have a blank empty canvas to redecorate. I’m washing slip covers today, and then I’ll  hang new quilts and put new things on the shelves and walls.

Just before Christmas, I stumbled upon someone’s project online. She had used Winter’s Lane.  OMGosh I feel IN LOVE with the fabric line, so I did a little search and then I gasped out loud when I saw Little Miss Shabby’s quilt made from the line.  It’s a free pattern, and I had to make it!!  I had a hard time finding the fabric (it came out awhile ago,) but finally did find a layer cake and some yardage for the borders.  I got my fabric in the mail on Christmas Eve.  And 3 day’s later, after reworking the measurements for a layer cake I had my quilt!!

Leave it to a quilter to try and go out in a blizzard to take a photo!! LOL

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Since that wasn’t working I tried an inside shot.

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I can’t wait to have it quilted and on my bed for winter!

Happy New Year!

Melissa

Some Down to the Wire Sewing

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On Monday The BG mentioned he needed a gift for the secretary he works with.  I really like her , and I think she’s the kind of person that would enjoy something handmade.

So I got to work and pulled out some REALLY old  fat quarters that I have always wanted to use up, and an old pattern from a long ago APQ magazine.

I made one for us too since the one I had made years ago mysteriously grew a big glob of super glue after some children that I know had fake nails on…. Hmmm?

Here they are ready to quilt today.

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Then I started to think …maybe these are too bright ?

Then I remembered I had a charm pack of fabric that is kind of secretary-ish.  What to make, what to make?  I always wanted to try Pink Penguin’s lunch bag!

So yesterday about 2:00 I started, and by evening ( with laundry, house work, and dinner thrown in there) I had finished two lunch bags that I adore! I had to fiddle around with the measurements because I did patchwork, and I switched up some of the finishing instructions, but all in all it was super fun and easy. Thank you Pink Penguin!!

Fronts:

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Backs:

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I ran out to Target last night when I was done  to find some sort of bento box, or lunch container to slip inside.  I found this really cute little box that holds a sandwich and sides.

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It fits perfectly inside and still has room for a water bottle or drink.

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(Opps I see some threads that need snipping)

When I showed The BG and asked him which gift he wanted to give, he said definitely the lunch bag!! Glad I made two, cause I really wanted one too! LOL

I learned over the years to always make two of the little projects, cause sometimes it’s just really hard to give away! =)

How about you ? Are you making some last minute projects?

Later gators!

Melissa

What I’m Making…

Baby it’s cold outside!

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And snowing like crazy for 3 or 4 days.  It’s almost to the tops of my boots and my painting sweat pants ! LOL

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Perfect sewing weather wouldn’t you say?  I’ve been making my gifties for sister-in-laws.

I have been really wanting a small messenger bag for awhile now.  They are so convenient for shopping so you don’t have to lug your whole purse, just slip in your phone and wallet, and it really saves on the shoulder pain!

So this year my sisters-in-law are getting what I wanted , I made us all one.

10 cute messenger bags:

PicMonkey CollageThey are made with really nice decor weight khaki fabric, lined with some cute daisy fabric.  I ordered some really cute leather daisy buttons from Cindy’s Buttons, but I can’t decide if I should add them or not.  What do you think?

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I made a lap quilt for Minate’s teacher and one for my Mom-in-law.

They are both flannel backed, and loosely quilted for that puffy, comfy feel.

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And Grandma Straub is getting a new little table topper with the left overs:

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Last weekend we busted out the Egg Nog for The BG and I,

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The shrimp for Minate (she made quick work of it!)

cornbread and beans blog 009 Cranked up the Christmas tunes, and put up the family tree.

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As we were pulling out the family ornaments, including the ones we all picked out this year, we were cracking up at The BG’s choices of ornaments. He tries to pick the ugliest ornaments he can find!!! This year’s was a 4 eyed curly haired alien!   My favorites are the ones the girls have made over the years with their school pictures.  Time sure has flown by.

I sure hope you are enjoying the season!!!

Melissa

More decked halls…

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How was your Thanksgiving?  Ours was just wonderful!!!  The food was yummy and the company was great! AND there are still two more lovely days left of the weekend. Can’t beat that.

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Today is a good day to share the rest of the decorating.

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I found this great primitive looking candelabra at a thrift store for 4 dollars.  I was thinking do I really need anymore pine boughs? I already have a couple tubs full. But this one was just so nice I had to say YES!   I’m planning a full on purge of Christmas stuff and other decor I just don’t use anymore at a garage sale this spring ,so I didn’t feel too guilty.  Whatever doesn’t sell I’ll give to a thrift store,  really I am just helping the world recycle right? LOL

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The hutch got maybe a little to filled, but I couldn’t help myself!

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One of the bottom shelves is holding the glitter houses.

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Something about this wreath pillow just got me. I found it at the grocery store!! So in the cart with the milk and eggs it went!

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The kitchen got it’s very own white tree this year.

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I made the little tree skirt out of some  felt I had in the sewing room and prepackaged felt snowflake stickers. Easy peasy.

Sparky the elf is living in the tree , that silly elf.

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Really the only sewing projects I did this year were the sweater pillows and two new quilts. I needed something with more “primary” red than my current Christmas quilts.

Quilt number one is hanging in the piano room

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And quilt number two is in the family room.

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And some more thrifted white sweater pillows.

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That pretty much concludes the decking of the halls.  Did you fall asleep?

Now it’s on to baking and shopping!!!

Fa la la la la, la la la la =)

Melissa

Christmas Living Room

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Well tomorrow’s the big day for all the turkey roasters! I’ve gotta say I’m pretty nervous! I’ve been going over and over all the recipes I collected for properly cooking the turkey, the gravy and the stuffing, just hoping for good results.  I don’t mind if it isn’t amazing, that would be great, but really I am just aiming for cooked!!! LOL

I’m just the pie baker usually, but this year it’s the whole sha-bang. The pies are in the oven as we speak, so the easy part is getting done today! Our guests arrive tonight and we’re all excited and ready for the visit.

I thought I would share the rest of my living room decorating with you today while the pies bake.

So as I was going for a “winter lodge” feeling, I decided I needed to make some sweater pillows.  I dug through salvation army sweaters until I found the perfect ski lodge looking red sweater.

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I tried to keep the table behind the love seat simple.  That is really hard for me! I have so much Christmas decor, and my inclination is to use everything because I love Christmas “nick nacks” as my husband calls them. Hehehe

I wasn’t very successful about using less in the dinning room, as you will see in later posts,  but the living room feels fairly simple to me.  Well as simple as I am able to go!

The coffee table got the galvanized pan with a faux boxwood candle wreath and a couple candycanes. I filled the apothecary jar with some jingle bells.

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I kept the base of the fall vignette, and just added some bottle brush trees, and my winter sign.

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I found this wonderful junk shop in Urbandale that also holds auctions once a week.  I popped on their auction site a couple weeks ago and saw these chicken wire lanterns.

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I won them for a dollar a piece! What a bargain! I added some greens and berries and put electronic candles in them. They look so sweet glowing at night on our stairway.

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I’ll be back next week to share the rest of the decking of the halls.

Have a very Happy Thanksgiving!!!!

May God continue to bless you and your family as HE blesses our family every day.

Gobble, gobble,

Melissa

Christmas Mantel 2013

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I know there two schools of thought on decorating for Christmas before Thanksgiving,  but everyone who knows me knows that I am firmly in the camp of decorate early, enjoy it longer!!!

If you are firmly in the camp of waiting, maybe you can save my next few posts for a week or two.  I hope you will still be my friend. LOL

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So I had a nice blank new canvas to decorate this year after our over mantel redo.  I knew I wanted something simple, like a winter lodge feel. I brought an old piece of fence in from outside and added a wreath pieced together from two old wreaths I had laying around and a pine cone and pip berry garland.  A plaid ribbon and paper bow , and a sweet pair of thrifted skates finished it off.

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I found some tall, red candle pillars, birch like candles, and a sparkly white deer to add to one side.

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A simple tree in a chippy bucket, and two more sparkly white deer on the other side.

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I’m hoping it conveys the “winter lodge” feel I was going for.

I’ll be sharing the rest of the living room and Christmas decorating in the next few posts.

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I LOVE CHRISTMAS!!!!!

Later gators,

Melissa