Quiltaway at Craftopotamus – ends 9/12/2010

Cecily over at Craftopotamus is having a Quiltaway to celebrate reaching 100 followers!  She quilted this fabulous quilt using fabrics from her stash, and has a very moving post about the design.  Entries are open until Sunday (Sept 12th) at 6 p.m.  I love being a follower of hers, and checking out her new creations!

 

Weekend Wrap – 8/30/2010

I had so much fun this weekend!  Ms. Diva and I spent a lot of time in the pool.  My little bro made it to Texas for a two week vacation.  The music for church service went very smoothly, and we did Amazing Grace/House of the Rising Sun version (I play violin, and hubby plays guitar and sings on the Praise Team).  I got some craft time in, and got both the Book Reviews I had pending posted and turned in (Forgotten and Captured By Grace).  Just in time, since I have three historical fictions on their way from Bethany House Publishers, LOL!  All in all a good weekend.
Now, for the coincidence (God’s way of staying anonymous) of the weekend.  My mom and I went to go shopping on Saturday.  I needed to get supplies to make more Stay-Put-Towels, and we stopped at the Super Wal-Mart completely by accident (we did continue on and stop at Hobby Lobby, Sam’s Club, and another Wal-Mart).  They didn’t have the item I was planning to buy there (of course not, LOL), but I decided to buy some stabilizer there since that Wal-Mart still has a fabric cutting counter.  While waiting for my turn to have the fabric cut, I noticed that the lady in front of me was cutting fabric that I had previously purchased.  Being the ever curious craft I am, I asked what she was using it for.  Turns out that she has an Etsy shop, and makes BooBoo Rice Bags.  We had a great conversation about Etsy, and different issues with having a store on-line through Etsy.  I truly believe that God placed me in that store to have that conversation.  Isn’t cool how He can do something that personal for me?  Now, I am just that much closer to taking the plunge and getting an Etsy store open.
Check out how to put your own image by your web address. See the pretty purple flowers?  Soooooooo easy!  Create Your Own Favicon (the official name for that bit of html code)
Posts planned for this week:
More Giveaway Links
How-To: Getting your craft on, tips to make more in an organized, time-saving way.
More finished product photos (I just keep making these keyfobs you see, LOL)
Also, in progress photos of the new Stay-Put Towels currently in production.
Five Question Friday (as always:))
Here is a picture preview from the How-To post. 
Linking up with:

I also linked up my Reverse Applique Tutorial to…

My first custom order is in the mail!

The set of burp clothes for Kasey is in the mail.  I love how the package turned out.  I also added a Keyfob with Pocket to the order with Mom’s initial.  Anything to help keep a mom’s hands free when she has a new baby to juggle is helpful, LOL!

Book Review – Forgotten, by Melody Carlson

{I received a FREE copy of this book from NavPress Publishers in exchange for my fair and honest review.}
~ Seventeen and Homeless ~

What would you do if you and your mom moved to a new town, and then your mom skipped town leaving you alone to fend for yourself?
That is the problem that faces the main character of this book. It shows us how many times we look at others with blinkers on. We want to see the pretty side to everything, and oftentimes we fail to see beneath the surface to the chaos. In this, the first book of her new series “Secrets”, Melody does a very good job of taking us below the surface of Adele’s life.
This story begins with Adele’s bi-polar mom getting a new job in a different town. She and Adele pack up everything and move hoping for a fresh start. Adele begins her Senior year of High School as part of the “in” crowd, and begins to live a life of fiction. Using the difficult situation that Adele faces, Melody explores the difficulties in maintaining friendships when you use pretense to mask the chaos going on in your life. You can only have true friendships if you are being true with them and yourself.
I was very taken with Melody Carlson’s writing style and storytelling in this book. The ending of this book could have been fleshed out a lot more, but overall I enjoyed the book. It is written in the first person, but that did not annoy me in this instance as it has with other authors. It is the first book by her that I have read, but I can assure you that it won’t be the last.
 
I received a FREE copy of this book from NavPress Publishers in exchange for my fair and honest review.

Book Review – Captured by Grace, by Dr. David Jeremiah

{I recieved a copy of this book from Thomas Nelson to read and review. 
The opinions in this review are 100% my own.}
“No One is beyond the reach of a loving God.”
Dr. David Jeremiah compares the life journey’s of Paul and John Newton in this book focused on the far reaching power of God’s grace. If God can accept and extend His grace to a slave trader and a radical Jew intent on arresting professing Christians of the early church, what is keeping you from accepting this same grace?
I recommend this book very, very highly to you. It was an engaging read that held my attention and my wandering mind (quite an accomplishment these days, LOL). There are so many interesting tidbits about Paul and John Newton, that it really helped to flesh out my understanding of their lives. It was also very interesting to see the influence of these mens’ Christian walks on others, and how that affected the issues of their times.
John Newton’s conversion had a far reaching affect that influenced and added strength to the movement to abolish slavery through his unique testimony. While Paul was influential in the development of the early church and it’s leadership. Dr. Jeremiah shares hardly known facts regarding each life from both before and after their conversions. Looking at Paul’s life, Dr. Jeremiah shows us how small seeds of the knowledge of God were being planted in Paul’s mind and soul by seeing how Christians acted during and after their capture. As Christians we often times forget how God can use us every time we interact with others, no matter the circumstances.
 
This book has left me with a better understanding of God’s grace, and how it should impact my daily walk.  Dr. Jeremiah referenced many different versus, and this was the first time for me to feel that I understood what the Romans Road is all about.  It has inspired me to be more conscious of how my interactions can be affecting someone else’s life, and to work on being more Christ-like in my everyday life.
 
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their BookSneeze.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Create your own Favicon

The ultimate in creating a personalized blog is having your own little image pop up next to your web-site address.  Instead of the “lovely” orange and white B.  Kelsey over at The Tip Junkie posted a wonderful tutorial under Blogging 101 that shows you how to create your own favicon
All I did, to create the lovely little (tiny) purple specks you see by my web-site address, was to follow her directions.  I am not even going to pretend I could figure this out on my own, LOL! 
One hint though – to create my little specks, I cropped down the image used for my signature to 15×15 using PhotoBucket.  Everytime I need to figure something out, PhotoBucket seems to be able to easily do the job for me.

Fuzzy Trim Tutu

{This post was originally a guest post for Sugar Bee}
The idea for this tutu came after I found the leopard print chiffon at Hobby Lobby.  I had been wanting to use a feather boa as trim on a tutu for a while, and I felt that this fuzzy boa looked sturdier (plus it was cheaper) than the more extravagant feather boas available.
Ingredients for Furry/Fuzzy Trim Tutu:
1 yard of chiffon or novelty fabric (tulle would be to “thin” to use for this project)
1 yard plus of coordinating 1.5″ ribbon
2 yards of Fur trim (found with the Feather Boas)
Fabric to make ribbon casing (1 yard by 4″, this fabric can be pieced together if needed for length)
First: Take your main fabric, unfold it, and match the selvage edges together right sides together (if you have questions about right versus wrong sides of fabric see description in the next step).  Sew with a zig-zag stitch through the selvage making sure to use reinforcing stitches at the start and end of your stitching.  I have my zig-zag set to 5.0 width by 2.5 length, which worked very well for this project.
Next: Take your fabric and fold it in half matching up the raw edges.  This creates the “skirt” of the tutu.  Make sure that you fabric has the right side out as you will not be turning this project. 
Normally fabric has a right and wrong side.  The wrong side will be a paler version of the print on the right side.  Some fabrics it is harder to tell than others.  This printed chiffon didn’t have a “paler” side per say, but did have a shiny and dull side.  So, I made sure to have the shiny side on the outside for this next step.
You will use your zig-zag again to stitch the two raw edges together.  Then use pinking shears (which dramatically cuts down fabric fraying) to trim your fabric about 1/4″ from the zig-zag stitches.
Measure along the edge you just trimmed to get the length you will need to make your ribbon casing.  Cut your ribbon casing fabric the length you just measured plus 1″ by 4″ wide (you can cut it 3.5″ wide, but I prefer to cut wider and then trim the fabric after ironing).  Fold each end over twice, iron and stitch closed to create a finished end.  Folding each end should take up about a 1/2″ of fabric.  If it takes up a little more than a 1/2″ that is okay.  This encloses the raw edge to prevent fraying, and is a great trick to use on lots of different sewing projects.
Iron your fabric in half lengthwise.  Use starch to create a stiffer, crisper fold.  Also, stiffening the fabric with starch will also make the fabric easier to sew.

 

Now, take your ribbon and lay it out the length of your casing.  Cut the ribbon 4″ longer than the ribbon casing, and trim your casing down for width.  You want to leave the casing at least 1/2″ wider than the width of the ribbon.
Pin the top edge of your skirt/tutu (the edge that you trimmed with the pinking shears) and the ribbon casing together.  Center the ends of your ribbon casing in the front of the skirt/tutu.  The ends should met end to end, but not overlap.  Use a straight stitch to sew the two together.  Then use your iron (on the setting that won’t melt your skirt/tutu material) to smooth out the seam.
To create a more finished inner seam, stitch 1/8″ along the seam catching the raw edge of the skirt/tutu. 
The top arrow shows the “uncaught raw edge”, and the bottom arrow shows how catching the raw edge will make for a more “finished” edge.
Now set your zig zag to 5.0 width and 0.0 length, or use your button attaching stitch to attach the fuzzy trim!  Start attaching your trim at the back where the seam in the skirt fabric is.  I wanted to include this fuzzy picture to show how I used my fingers to separate the fur before stitching the bar tack (stitches with no length to attach something).  To make sure the trim was sturdily attached I anchored it every 4 inches, about 1/2″ from the folded edge at the bottom of the skirt/tutu.  When I reached the beginning of the fur trim, I cut the end so that there was a little overlap, and did two bar tacks about 1 inch apart to make sure the end was secure.
Thread your ribbon through the casing, stitch it in the center of the back with a straight stitch to prevent little hands from pulling the ribbon out, and you are done!
If you would like to see how to make the Zippy Flower Tutu, you can check it out at The Spunky Diva!
Many thanks again Mandy for having me over!
Kimberlee, Thank you for visiting!
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~ About Me ~


I'm Kimberlee, the owner/creater of 'The Spunky Diva'. Here is a little about me... In addition to my love of blogging I adore all crafts, sewing, quilting, improving my non-existent cooking skills, and playing with my two girls. We have a 'collection' of animals around the place to keep us busy; two 'huge' dogs, a cat, kittens, several horses, and assorted wildlife. We live east of Austin, Texas, in the middle of farm country. Here at 'The Spunky Diva' blog I get to share daily life moments, fun crafts, sewing and quilting progress/finishes, and brag about my 'Babies'. Thank you for visiting and sharing some of your day with me!

~Kimberlee

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