Sunday, June 30, 2013

Google Reader is Shutting Down Tomorrow!

Just a quick heads up that today is the last day to use Google Reader. 

You have many options to follow us, they are all listed on the sidebar and will get you there with a click of a button. We have an email option, Facebook and Bloglovin' set up for you already. We also have the individual icons for both Bree and myself, but those are for our personal accounts in those other places, not for the the blog. Google Friend Connect is still on the sidebar, but I DO NOT know if that is going to go away with Reader or not. If you subscribe through Friend Connect you may want to subscribe elsewhere to be safe.

There are a couple of Google Reader like options, some of which will import all of your Reader subscriptions right over for you and have apps for reading on your phone. I have personally switched to Bloglovin', but Feedly and Feeddler (yes, with 2 Ds) are a couple of others that I know will import your subscriptions. 

If you haven't already, please take a moment to make sure you are following your blogs elsewhere so you don't lose anybody!

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Quilts on Parade

I was recently honored to participate in a two month long quilt show at the little local art gallery for the local Modern Quilt Guild. 

About a month into the show, they had a little reception for us where I snapped a few pictures to share. 

Upon walking in the door, the first one I noticed was the Prince Charming single wedding ring quilt, hanging over the main walk through.

The rest of it is folded onto the other side. They said they got lots of compliments on that one, which made me giddy to hear!

Poor Mod Pop was in the back, banished into a corner. My poor baby :( (Insert obligatory "Nobody puts baby in a corner" joke here).

Cosmic Burst was back there keeping it company though.

I just realized that there was an entire wall of quilts that I missed getting a picture of! They were so lovely too, I can picture them in my head, so bright and colorful.

On the same day as the reception, the other guild in town hosted it's annual quilt show and I attended with Rhonda, the owner of my LQS Tabby Fabric and Studio, to help in her booth. She actually invited me to come sit and sell some patterns, which I thought was incredibly sweet.

I took a quick little break and walked around the show to see the quilts of course, and there were some real beauties! These were just a few that stood out to me.

This one you may have noticed in one of the above pictures, it made the rounds that day!

I just loved how bright this one is.

This particular one really caught my attention. So bold and graphic and such fun piecing! 

This one was awesome, so awesome. I love when people think outside the box and put random shapes and colors together to create something so beautiful. 

Not a bad way to spend the day my friends, not bad at all.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

MMHF - My Most Hoarded Fabric

Y'all have this problem, right? Fabric that is just SO PRECIOUS, SO hard to find that you can't bear to cut up what you have?

A couple years ago, dear sweet Julie Pickles found a poplin Munki Munki sleeve of Heather Ross's Fish in Bags and sent it ot me. Because she's amazing. I've used three of the fish, fussy cut, but have been terribly scared to use the rest of the sleeve! The poplin is soft and smooth, and it's nearly impossible to find the original yardage.

So I've been drooling over this fabric and petting it endlessly for oh, two years. I finally bit the bullet and bought a set of munki munki pjs so I could have some more, which, of course, enabled me to use a bit more of what I already have, and I made myself a perfect little clutch!!! I adore it. Julie's bag making is rubbing off on me, I keep making myself clutches and bags lately.

And how adorable are these fish with the DS quilts prints from Joann's??


Of course, now that it's done, I'm just going to keep petting what I have left. I'm sure I won't use any more until I buy more. It's a sickness, I think. (A sickness you can share, if you want - I put some of the pj parts in my etsy shop ( to help recoup the cost).

I've actually been sewing a lot lately... working on a new pattern, using Riley Blake's Neon fabrics. That's coming in the next few weeks! I also have been testing Julie's patterns, including a new one she's hoping to release soon too :)

Monday, June 10, 2013

Busy, Busy. But a Good Busy!

With my sew-jo is back in full force, there has been quite a bit of action in Julie Pickles Land. 

I have been getting myself acquainted with my new embroidery machine. It's taken me a lot longer than I expected, that's for sure. Heidi and I have been working through some kinks in the whole embroidery process together, she's been a fantastic help for me as a beginner. As we were discussing an issue in a little group we're a part of, another friend commented that, based on our conversations, she never wants to try her hand at machine embroidery. Heidi was all like "Hey, it's not sunshine and rainbows, that's for sure!" I'm paraphrasing actually, but that was the gist. And I have to agree! I'm an extremely tenacious person though and tackling things head on is what I do best. 

The biggest issue I have had is with puckering while embroidering on quilting cotton. Quilting cotton is just not strong enough to withstand really dense stitching and well, that's what I'm going to be embroidering on most!

This was one of the first things I tried embroidering.

A hot mess, right? Besides the puckering, there are places where the stitching doesn't even meet because the fabric had shifted so much. According to Facebook, I posted that picture in March 2, so I had only owned the machine for a week or so at that point. 

This is one I stitched over the weekend.

SO smooth!! It's amazing what some starch, the right stabilizers and a basting stitch can do! I'm ready to tackle that first design again!

I also figured out how to make monograms over the weekend through my digitizing program. And one evening I decided that I needed a new pouch for my Kindle. I had put it in one that I had already made when I bought it, and it was just too big and not protective enough. I wanted to be able to drop my Kindle in my purse and not worry about it bumping around in there. 

So I came up with this pouch. It's padded with soft and stable and the Kindle fits nice and snug inside.

As you can see, I made this one before I figured out my puckering issues with the embroidery.

I was showing it off in my little group when one of the girls, and a very good friend, piped up that she wanted one too! We discussed monograms and she asked for the same outer fabric as mine so this is hers.

Her pictures are nicer as I needed some really good photos because these covers are now listed in my etsy shop! That poor shop has been set up for 4 1/2 years and the only thing I have ever done is list fabric destashes in there. I promised the husband that I would put the embroidery machine to work if he let me get one so I finally got off my rear and did something with it. I couldn't until I figured out the puckering issues and now that I have I'm ready to branch out and do this. I'm still not confident enough to do other things yet, like custom embroidery for people, and shirts and stuff. I'll get there, but this is a start. 

You can see I have added mine and Bree's etsy shops up at the top in the tabbed area. Come check us out!

And since I have your attention, today is the last day for me to link up (scratch that, my brain quit working apparently, I missed the link up!) my June goals for A Lovely Year of Finishes. The last thing on my list for this quarter of the 2013 Finish a Long is to finish my cathedral window sampler, so that will be my June goal. 

It's pretty heavy already because of the cathedral windows. I'm pretty sure I'll use batting but I can't decide how best to quilt it. If you have any advice, I'm all ears! I actually thought about adding some tabs across the top and making it a wall hanging. Yay or nay? Seriously, any advice on how to finish this one up is very welcome!