Thursday, May 16, 2013

I'm A Knotty Girl!

Over the Mountain and Through the Woods, to Crabapple Hill I Go...

I have been a fan of Crabapple Hill Designs for a long time.  I have made a few of Meg's patterns such as this

and this

and this

So, I was very fortunate to treat myself and attend a 3 day retreat in Benton City, WA at the Crabapple Hill studio.  And boy, I was not disappointed at all!  So much to show, so much to tell.

I flew into Tri-Cities, Washington via Seattle.  I'm so glad they have a regional airport because I did not want to make the 2+ hour drive from Seattle or Portland by myself.  

Here is a photo of the drive to the studio.

And finally, the gorgeous studio!

I could hardly wait for the retreat to start!  Luckily, Meg and her staff did not disappoint.  I had soooo much fun!  To view more (and better) photos of the retreat, visit Meg's blog here and scroll down to view the Spring 2013 photos.

The food was delish, Meg's studio and home were gorgeous, Meg's staff were friendly and my fellow attendees were all so friendly, funny and talented.    

Glad to have met new people who were so nice and helpful.  In fact, I hardly made a dent on my project because I spent way too much time chatting and visiting with others and gawking/drooling at Meg's beautiful quilts and studio decor.

Here are some of the cool projects we made.

Here is our cute, little mascot Honeybunny.  He is so sweet and photogenic.  I must have taken a couple dozen photos of this cat.  But here's my favorite 4.


Drats!  I forgot to take a picture of Meg.  Seriously, I had the Best.Time.Ever!

And here is the project we were all working on at the retreat.  

I made my block into a pillow and added "Hurray for Spring" so that I'll always remember spring 2013 when I had the pleasure of visiting Crabapple Hill Studio and had a blast!

I also framed the pillow with a crochet trim (from JoAnn) and mitered the corners.  I tried sewing it as one continuous piece (like ric rac) but it was just too difficult and honestly, I just couldn't figure it out.  

But look how good I did with mitering!  Ha! Just had to show off ;-)

I'm almost embarrassed to say but will admit it anyway, the green polka dot fabric is from JoAnn, as well. *Gasp!*  

Well, I was already purchasing the crochet trim and you know how sometimes its just so much easier to buy new fabric than dig up what you already own.  Yes, I was too lazy.  

Hope you are having a fabulous spring, as well.

Friday, May 10, 2013

And the Quilting Adventures Continue

I've been such a neglectful blogger lately.  My bad.  Instead of boring y'all with my lame excuses, let me catch you up with all my quilting (and crafting) adventures.

So, where do I begin?  Hard to recap the past 4 months in a single post but in a nutshell, I have:

1.  Tried by hand at re-upholstering furniture  
2.  Attended an embroidery retreat at Crabapple Hill
3.  Started cross stitching
4.  Taken a beginning crochet class with my work friend
5.  Finished applique-ing all the blocks for my Abundance quilt
6.  Been addicted to Pinterest!

Let me start with the first item on my list.  There are so many instructions on Pinterest for DIY and upcycling projects.  So, I decided I was going to give my sewing chair a make-over.  

Here is the "Before" photo.

I don't know how old this chair is.  But it is a hand-me-down and I've owned it for at least 5 years now.  It used to belong to Patty.  She then gave it to Lynn.  Lynn then gave it to me.  So, the chair must be at least 7 years old.  It's still in pretty good shape.

What I love most about this chair is the storage underneath.  I keep my bobbins, sewing machine oil, etc. in the drawers.  But it needed a little bit of a face lift so I decided to change the cushion, repaint the wood and change the drawer handles.  

After watching a few YouTube videos, I was ready to go.

First, the chair had to be taken apart and given a very good and thorough cleaning.  

I took off the cushion and used Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in French Linen to paint all the wooden areas of the chair.  The paint is quite pricey so I bought a small tester pot.  The nice thing about the paint is that it is so user friendly.  No need to sand and prime the surface.  Just slap on the paint and let it dry.  The paint dried really quickly and I bought a small jar of wax to slather on top of the painted piece.

Next came the cushion.  It was heavily stapled and glued underneath so ripping out the cushion cover took a bit more effort.

The foam was glued down to the wood and I had to tear and scrape it off.  Bits and pieces of foam was flying everywhere.  Not too fun.  

I chose a light pink decorator fabric with the Eiffel Tower on it and voila!

I don't think this is a very good photo but I think you get the general idea.  Pink + French theme = LOVE!  I stapled that fabric and cushion down to death and I know I didn't do a perfect job but I it really was a lot harder than I thought it would be.  It was difficult not to get pleats in the corners and for the height of the cushion to stay consistent.  But I'm very happy with the overall result.

And here are the new drawer handles.

Isn't she just gorgeous?  I just love my "new" chair.

It is sort of inspired by THIS chair, which I love!

And here's a peek of my sewing table and space.

It's a little bit of a mess so I'll give you a tour once I straighten up a bit.  

I still have some fabric left over so I think I will be replacing those cafe curtains with the new pink Paris fabric.  Do you think it will be too matchy-matchy?

It's a miracle what a fresh coat of paint can do!