Saturday, July 30, 2011

Fabric Shopping in San Francisco

I had a hair appointment in the city today and decided to visit a few fabric stores while I was there. I was reminded of why I don't like San Francisco; it was super windy and cold, driving was extremely difficult, and parking just wasn't easy in general. But regardless, I enjoyed my visit. Here is a summary of my day with my lovely husband who took me from one store to another and waited for me patiently!

First stop: Britex Fabrics 
Britex Fabrics is right off Union Square and has four floors of shoppings for fabric lovers. The first and second floor are completely packed with fabric, the third floor has notions, and the fourth floor is full of fabric remnants stored very neatly. This place was amazingly well-organized and has almost everything a sewer may need. I bought some fancy machine quilting thread to finish a baby quilt that I started a long time ago.

Second stop: Peapod Japanese Fabric Store

Peadpod recently moved down the street from where it was before. I must say that I like this new location so much more; it's slightly bigger and much brighter than before. Parking was still difficult, but it  was okay because I had my husband. He waited in the car and read patiently while I went crazy fabric shopping! Fabrics shown above are some of what I got today from Peapod. See that boring looking linen all the way to the left? That's the one I am most excited about; it's a combination of linen and high qualify cotton so that's easy to hand quilt! I cannot wait to work with that material. 

Third stop: Miette Confiserie 

By this time, we definitely needed a break! We stopped by the infamous Miette Confiserie; it was adorable, fun, and full of beautifully packaged goodies. I had the hazelnut and strawberry macaroons, but they were nothing like the ones I had in Paris. I guess a visit to Paris is needed if you want really good and fresh macaroons. 

After all these stores and two hours at my hair salon, we wrapped it up by having pizza at Little Stars. This little hole in the wall pizza place has over 1700 4.5 stars reviews on Yelp! Can you believe it?! 

Phew~ That was a long day! I hope you had a great Saturday as well. 

Quilted Toaster Oven Cozy

My mom has this small toaster oven in her kitchen that she uses all the time. She usually has a few items on top of the toaster oven, but don't you worry... she always removes everything before turning on the oven. I decided to make her this simple quilt to go on top of the toast oven. I mean, come on! Have you seen the top of any toaster over? It's very boring! I am just looking for every opportunity to quilt for things around the house.

I used all of the blue and green fabric from my new Denyse Schmidt's collection. I love the way this came out!

The finished size measures 8" x 14", it sits perfectly over the toast oven. I cut each square into 2.5" with 0.25" seam allowance, the long strips measure about 1" in height and 18" across. 

I plan to visit Britex Fabrics in San Francisco tomorrow. This is one of the largest fabric store on the west coast and has been around for more than 50 years. I cannot believe that I haven't been! It's about time I visit them. I will take some good pictures for you. 

By the way, thanks to those of you who continue to support my blog by leaving my comments and complimenting my work. I really appreciate every comment from you. Thank you! :)

Monday, July 25, 2011

Moda Sherbet Pips Pouch - Received

I came home last week to a big package in the kitchen and immediately knew that it was from my Pretty {Little} Pouch Swap ~ Round 2's swap partner (Dawn) in Canada. This pouch Dawn made me is exactly what I wanted; it had the right color, shape and even Moda's Sherbet Pips fabric collection that I almost bought about a month ago. I feel so lucky to have had such a wonderful swap partner who values good quality work, which is important to me. Also, did I mention that she is a fan of Moda as well?

Look at that! Aren't the colors amazing?

Lining of the pouch. 

Look at her work, it's so impressive. The inside of the bag is completely lined; there isn't a corner that's unfinished. The entire pouch is just so professionally made. I really appreciate it! 

The pouch wasn't all, take a look at what else Dawn made me. 
Take a look at the pink knitted bag she made!

I am thinking to use the pouch to store my ongoing knitting projects so I can enjoy the pouch everywhere I go! I will definitely have to use the knitted pink bag this summer. It will be so perfect! Thank you again, Dawn!

On a different note, I dropped off my sewing machine today to have it serviced. I checked my warranty card, it says "Date of Purchased: 06-18-1997." It's been 15 years! Can you believe it!? 

Friday, July 22, 2011

Simple Pouch with Zipper

Remember the two pouches I made for my Pretty {little} Pouch Swap ~ Round 2? Well, I don't love either of them, so this week I started a third one. I know, my husband thinks I am crazy too. My inspiration came from Moda Just Wing it. Hello?! Just wing it Susan! Why am I over thinking this project? Just keep it simple! I love this Moda collection so much that I wanted to use as many fabric as possible. This is what I decided on, and can I tell you how much I enjoyed making this one versus the other two!?

Clearly, this is a winner! I love how this turned out!
Pouch measures 6" x 8"

I am really proud of how I lined this and added the zipper. It's just so perfect!

Swap partner: This is the one I am sending you. I hope you like the style, color, and my work! 

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Miss Piggy and her Jump Rope

I know this is a bit crazy and very un-pouch like, but how's this for a pouch swap? I swear... it really is a pouch, it has a zipper on the back. I think it's big enough to hold a few coins. This has been done mostly by hand, the size is about 5"x5". Is this too small? I got this idea from a Japanese book that I got many years ago. 

Guess what my husband noticed when I showed him? 
He said "hm... honey, the rope is too short for the pig! She may trip!" LOL 

See! Told you there is a zipper :)

I pieced the front using multiple hexagons; my swap partner likes pink, so here you go.

Template I traced for the pig. 

Really hope my partner is okay with this pig pouch... It's either the pig or the crazy looking pouch

Monday, July 18, 2011

Disastrous Pouch Making Weekend

I am participating in Round 2 of the Pretty {little} Pouch Swap, and can I just tell you how stressful it has been? I only have myself to blame. I was thinking to make my partner something really unique, not just a flat or boxy pouch. Note: there is nothing wrong with flat or boxy pouches, I love those; I just wanted to challenge myself.

So I thought I would put my Denyse Schmidt's Picnic and Fairgrounds collection to use. I tried to use this collection with linen, but linen was simply too difficult to piece with, so I gave up and simply used this ivory fabric.

Yea, not very exciting at all. Toss to the trash can; I don't like it. 

Back to the drawing board.... I revisited all of my fabric and stared at them.... B L A N K.... nothing came to mind. I must say, designing for this swap has been very challenging. Below is a picture of what I ended up making.

Okay, what is this? *rolling my eyes*

Can someone tell me what the heck this can be used for? I really don't like this at all. I like the design and the combination of the fabric I used, but I find the construction poorly done and just don't like the quality of it at all! My sweet mom tried to make me feel better by suggesting "it's a CD case!!" Good idea, but still, the quality is not up to my standard, and I feel guilty sending my swap partner something I don't like. 

This one will sit somewhere in the reject bin for a long time; we are not on speaking terms at the moment.

Back to the drawing board again.... I must come up with a better design for this swap. 

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Disney World and More Monsters!

I hope everyone had a fantastic fourth of July and a nice few days to relax. I spent a week in Orlando for work, but was able to visit downtown Disney. I really didn't like the weather in Orlando, it was too hot and humid for me... definitely did not want to knit... no way!

Here is what I did for my fourth of July holiday before my Orlando trip; I made another set of Daphne and Delilah the Mama and Baby Monster by Rebecca Danger. These little monsters are for a special recipient in mind.
Monsters hanging out by the fireplace

Hold on tight little monster!

Something doesn't look quite right here, can you tell? 

Did you get it? I forgot to turn the mama monster inside out before I did the three-needle bind off! Do you see the bump/braid above the eyes??!! It's not supposed to be there. I only realized it when I was reading the instructions for the baby monster... This can only mean that I also made the same mistake with my Domo! I also forgot to turn him inside out! ARG.... O well...

I think I am done making these monsters for awhile... time for a new project. Any suggestions?

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Meet Mr. Domo

I found out recently that my friend was throwing a surprise birthday party for her boyfriend who was turning 30; theme for the part was Domo. Apparently, he loves Domo! Have you heard of Domo? Domo is the official mascot of Japan's NHK television station. My friend ordered cake pops in the shape of Domo! So of course, I had to make this for her boyfriend to help them celebrate his 30th birthday!

Not bad, huh?
I modified Rebecca Danger's Daphne and Delilah the Mama and Baby Monster pattern. I didn't knit this entire project on circular needles, the red section was done knitting straight back and forth. The red section was across 24 stitches! That's simple too many stitches to carry the brown yarn across, so I had to knit the red section on its own, then do the same with the brown section, and stitch them up.

This was a bit tricky, but it worked out!

 Domo all done, waiting to be assembled! :)

I hope the recipient likes it!

Friday, July 1, 2011

Knitted Baby Girl Sweater

A good friend of mine worked on baby girl sweater using the Autumn Leaves pattern, so I decided to make one as well! Did I mention that the pattern is free?! I used the leftover yarn from the other baby vest I made.

 I really like how it turned out, so girly! Nice leafy pattern with puffy shoulders!

The leave pattern came out so well after I blocked it.

I decided to use yellow buttons vs. pink. Not sure why, but I really like this shade of yellow.

Really fun pattern; I may have to make another one in pink!