Thursday, January 21, 2016

Hot Air Balloon Fabric Embroidery

Up, up and awaaay! My grandmother gave me this beautiful hot air balloon fabric from her extensive sewing stash. When I saw it, I immediately dreamed of embroidering over the lines to make the balloons really pop off the fabric. Inspiration in the greatest of places.

The problem?
I had never done any embroidery before.

To be clear, I've done oodles and oodles of cross stitch projects, which is a form of embroidery. We know this. But doing that super cool thing of stitching beautiful shapes on fabric? Never.

So I pulled up Sublime Stitching's Tutorials online and gave it a whirl!

I used the full six strands in my embroidery floss and did a simple backstitch. Here's what came out:

Not terrible, right? I wish I had used less strands (maybe three or four) instead of six. I also need to work on my spacing and consistency of stitch length, but otherwise, for a first try, I think I did a good job. Even better, it was a fun! It's faster than cross stitch, which is a huge plus when I get the itch to stitch but don't have a ton of time. And when I'm feeling particularly impatient about completing projects.

I'll have to do a few more hot air balloons. The balloons on the fabric vary in size, so it would be cute to do three finished in wood hoops and hang them together for decor. Better yet, this gave me more ideas for fabric I have stored away.

Have you ever embroidered on fabric like this before? How did it go? Do you have any embroidery tips for me?

Saturday, January 9, 2016


Christmas is behind us but not forgotten. The ‪#‎CubbyPhotoChallenge‬ for the year is the FIRST PROJECT COMPLETED. I made this cross stitch for my aunt during my holiday break. She's been so supportive of my crafty endeavors I thought the best way to thank her was with a piece all her own. I've also been working really hard lately on staging my products. Learning to have the right background and accessories is tough but - what do you think? What's your first project completed?
{This pattern can be purchased in my shop as well.}

What To Do With All of Those Quotes From Pinterest

Like millions of people across the globe, I love Pinterest. My love is simple. I'm a very visual person so I see, I like, I pin. This formula works tremendously well for me. Unfortunately, I use the same methodology for online shopping and as you can imagine, that's no bueno. But I digress...

In my time as a pinner, I've amassed quite the collection of quote images. Some for fitness motivation, some aspirational, some funny. Over time, I've dove into my boards to see the clever words but for the most part, once pinned, they are quickly forgotten. The true tragedy of this is I actually really love most of these quote images. They are beautifully styled. For a while, I've been looking for a way to bring these quotes more to the forefront of my life. Being a crafter, one would imagine I would print them out and have them in a clever display in my home. Unfortunately, my tastes change too frequently to commit to a certain set and by printing I'm limited to the number of images I can see.

On a typical Sunday morning, a brilliant idea occurred to me. Sunday mornings are my time for laundry and cleaning. I turn the music up and go putt around my home.  My AppleTV is always the source of my music - not only for Sundays, but for every day. Until this point, my screensaver was a system standard of floral images and I was curious if I could load my own images into the screensaver. You can do it on a laptop, why not AppleTV? Turns out you can! Thus, a dream was born!

The process is really very simple. On any Apple device (MacBook, iPad, iPhone), download the images from Pinterest into your iPhoto library. I found this part particularly fun because it felt like shopping, except I didn't have to spend any money and there wasn't any pesky buyer's remorse.

Next, create a new SHARED album. The "Shared" part is crucial. This won't work otherwise. On the iPhone and iPad, it's the middle navigation button within iPhoto with the Cloud. On MacBook, on the top navigation, select "Shared". Next, hit the "+", give it a name and start adding photos.

All set? Now, it's time to tell your AppleTV that you want to see that screensaver.

Here's your path...
Settings > Screen Saver > Photos > iCloud Photos > Select Album Name

You're all set! If your album is new, you'll need to give the iCloud time to catch up. My album ended up being about 60 pictures (can you imagine if I printed all of those?!) so it took about half an hour for the pictures to fully sync on all devices.

Play with your settings as well! I have my screensaver start after 5 minutes and have it set on "Flip-Up" style. But you do you!

Also, because I loved this idea so much, I added it as my laptop screensaver. To reset your laptop screensaver, here's your path...
System Preferences > Desktop & Screen Saver > Screen Saver > Source (change to your album)

The best part of this is how easy it is to add to it. Next time I find a quote I love, I just add it to my Shared Album and boom! It syncs everywhere.

Now, these beautiful quotables are in my face, reminding me to be ambitious, get my butt moving and stay rad.
[Originally posted on]
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