Thursday, June 28, 2012

Make the most of yourself, for that is all there is of you. -Ralph Waldo Emerson

Happy Thursday everyone! I made a few things over the last little bit that I haven't had a chance to show you yet, so let's get to it!

These are my June blocks for the Joy circle of do. Good Stitches. We used the Patchwork Wheel tutorial from Elizabeth of Don't Call Me Betsy and I think they turned out quite nice. I used a mix of prints for these including quite a few from Tula Pink, some Kate Spain, some Heather Bailey, solids, and a few more designers.

I have more (read: better) pictures of them, but unfortunately they are on my computer which is in the shop after the hard drive melt-down. Luckily I take a lot of pictures on my phone to share on Instagram while I'm working on things so at least I have this one to show! By the way, if you're on Instagram and want to find me my name username is KayePrince.  

I finished my Diagonal Lace Socks a couple of weeks ago and I just love the way they turned out! The pattern is from Wendy Johnson's Socks From the Toe Up but it is also available on Wendy's blog as one of her (many) free downloadable patterns. The yarn I used is from an indie dye, Aspen Moon Arts, on Etsy; it's 70% superwash wool and 30% nylon, and the colourway is called Harvest Corn. These are the second pair of socks I've knit but they were a first in many ways - my first using the toe up method, my first using magic loop, and my first actually using fingering weight yarn (the first pair were super-chunky). Yes, I am quite pleased with them.

I also stitched up this little guy just for fun! The Royal Guard was first published in Cross Stitcher magazine last year but can now be found as a download on The Making Spot (if you have not checked out that website, run and look - seriously!). I have no idea how I'm going to use him yet, but I had a ton of fun just stitching him up! I stitched up another little giftie for my mum this week but it'll have to wait until after I give it to her because she reads my blog (hi Mum!).

And finally, I started a new pair of socks yesterday and this is the yarn I'm using. It's Madelinetosh Tosh Sock in Iceburg (which is a colourway that has been discontinued); I'm using the Feather Lace pattern from Rosemary Falk, and am super-excited that they are less-than-standard stitches around so I think they'll fit my super-narrow feet better! I will show my progress when I've got a little more going.

I am now going to go read a book or watch You've Got Mail (in honour of Nora Ephron) in bed since I got stung by a stupid, ruddy bee today in the sole of my foot (while wearing my bloody shoes!) and need a lie down. Poor foot. Rubbish bee.

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Monday, June 25, 2012

Generation Q Review + Giveaway!

Hey all! Are you ready for the first stop on the Generation Q Magazine blog tour? Do you like giveaways?  If you answered yes to either question (or a big double-yes for the pair) then you are in the right place! Remember, that this is just the first stop on the tour/giveaway spree - the full list of participants and dates can be found here over at GenQ.

I originally intended to have this post up earlier in the day but my hard drive crashed this morning (oy!) and now needs to be replaced - I am currently using Alex's old laptop but it is slow going (obviously Alex replaced this one for a reason). In all honesty, I've actually been trying to post a different blog post since Thursday but my computer wouldn't let me - this morning it just bit the bucket entirely (mixed-metaphor, what!).

Generation Q is a brand-new print magazine from the wonderful people at the GenQ BlogZine - it is bursting with fun, fresh, and creative ideas, awesome interviews, reviews, and feisty commentary.

I received my copy of the first issue in the mail on Friday as part of my little "bribe" for backing the Kickstarter campaign a few months ago, haha! Don't Amy and David Butler look all cozy there snuggled up in a quilt designed by Scott?

Let's talk a little about the outside first, shall we? It is quite nice and compact measuring 7x9" rather than the standard 8.5x11" (or so) - it is very neat! I like the more compact size because it makes it easier to throw into a purse or tote for travel reading without having to worry about wrinkling up the cover or folding it to fit. The cover is glossy and eye-catching, and the paper has a nice feel.

Now let's open it up! And just so that you know, I'm trying hard not to give away too much of the interior content with my pictures here, so you're not getting to see all of the really good stuff! You'll need to get your own for that *wink*.

Oh, look there's me! Haha, sorry, I just has to put that it there (this is the lovely list at the front of this issue thanking everyone who helped to back the Kickstarter campaign). Anywho...

One of the first elements that really caught my eye was the Block Builder feature. In each issue there will be a "starter" block which will be used by the participants to create a quilt block. In this issue the awesome peeps over at Fat Quarterly were invited to use the starter block shown in the picture to create a block design; there are five designs spread over three pages and Brioni's take is shown above. As well, each issue features a new starter block and invites readers to create a block with it which can than be submitted and possibly featured in the next issue. I think that's pretty fun!

This issue also features a fun and fresh interview and studio/home tour with Amy and David Butler - the pictures are lovely and learning more about their lives and art was great.

On top of other great product reviews, gift ideas, fun commentary and articles, the magazine also features patterns! We all love patterns, don't we? Here's just a little taste...

This is the full view of Scott's quilt, Hugs and Kisses No. 9,  which was also featured on the cover. Scott's quilt features a number of different blocks in different sizes and the really wonderful thing about this pattern is that there are step-by-step diagrams for making each and every block, along with written instructions. There are also notes for each block on using scraps to create the different values and achieve the same effect.

Along with Scott, this issue also features patterns from Julie Herman, Melissa Peda, Heather Jones, Pat Bravo, and the info on getting an exclusive downloadable pattern from Rashida Coleman-Hale.

Really it's fabulous! And no, I'm not just saying that because they asked me to do a review, I am so so so proud of Jake, Melissa, Scott, Megan, and everybody else who helped to put this magazine together. They should all be very proud of themselves.

So I guess you want to now a little bit more about the giveaway then, eh? Well, step right up and enter to win your very own print copy of the magazine! You have two ways to enter here, and also if you want another chance you can "like" GenQ on Facebook and get entered to win over there too (however, liking on Facebook, will do nothing to help your chances here). Here's what you need to do for your two chances:

1. Tell me what you would most like to see from a new print quilting/sewing/crafty magazine. 
Are there specific people you'd like to see interviewed, specific types of patterns? Anything goes!

2. Leave another comment if you are a follower of my blog.

Two easy-peasy ways to enter, just make sure that you leave a comment for each entry (if you combine both into one I can only count it as one). I will close the comments in a week (on July 2nd) and announce the winner here on the blog. International entries are, as always, welcome! Any duplicate comments will be deleted.

*the giveaway is now closed*

Thursday, June 7, 2012

A New Cross Stitch Pattern + the Giveaway Winner!!

Hey everyone, how y'all doing? I am very excited to announce that I have a new cross stitch pattern available! In a way two actually, but we'll get to that in a bit! Without further ado, I give you...

Let's Get Baked! Let's Get Baked is a fun cross stitch pattern featuring a vintage-y mixer, some cherry pie and a few other little accoutrements!

On 14 count aida, it finishes at approximately 5.5x8" and is available in both my Etsy Shop and my Craftsy pattern shop.

The other pseudo-new (but not actually) pattern is...

Itching to be Stitching! Yes, I know you've seen this little baby before, but... it's been discontinued by The Frosted Pumpkin Stitchery on account of them welcoming a new guest designer this week (don't worry, no drama or anything, we're all still friends). So now I'm re-releasing it in my own shops (Etsy and Craftsy) with a whole new cover and lay-out! Woot, good times!

So, about this whole two shops thing - yes, the patterns are available through both and here's the deal. Lots of people have Etsy accounts and I already have a shop there, but Craftsy allows the user to download the pattern automatically (with Etsy you'll have to wait for me to email it to you), allows them to keep it in their library, and they don't charge me any fees to sell through them. So feel free, if you're going to that is, to purchase the pattern from either place!

Well now, I bet you're wondering who won the giveaway, right?

Congratulations Bobbi!! Please email me with your details and FQS will get your bundle shipped out.

*And just as I was about to hit post, Alex calls me from the hospital saying that he got a cleat to the head at Frisbee and needs stitches, so I'm on my way to the hospital! Don't worry, he seems fine, but I gotta go!

Monday, June 4, 2012

Desperate Housewife's Quilt - Chevron Fly

Hey all! Thanks so much for joining me for my stop on Jane's Desperate Housewife's Quilt and in case you missed it (or this is your first time here) my giveaway for Heather's Blogger's Choice Bundle is still open here (until June 7th)!

So, what is going on here you might be wondering? Well, Jane of QuiltJane is posting one tutorial a week for 50 weeks for an 8" finished block, as well she's invited other bloggers to contribute a tutorial for a block for each of those 50 weeks for a grand total of 100 blocks! It's pretty fun!

So this is my week - week 48 - and I've got an original block tutorial for you! I'm calling this little baby Chevron Fly and I really hope you like it!

Alright, you ready? Let's go!!!


- 8 print squares, two of each print, measuring 2x2"
- 8 solid squares (I used Kona Charcoal), measuring 2x2"
- 1.5x8.5" solid strip
- 5.5x8.5" solid rectangle

Notes: All seams are 1/4" unless otherwise specified. Press seams in between each step.

 Making the HSTs:

-Draw a line diagonally from point to point on the wrong side of two matching printed squares.

-Pin a print square, right sides together, with a solid square and sew 1/4" away on either side of the diagonal line. Repeat with other matching print square and a solid square.

-Using your rotary cutter or a pair of scissors cut each square into two triangular pieces using the original line that you drew as your guide.

-Open up each HST and press the centre seam open. Trim each block if necessary to 1.5x1.5" square and cut off the little nubbins that are jutting out.

-Line up your four matching HSTs as shown in the picture above.

-Sew the top two blocks and bottom two blocks together as shown above. Join together to form the finished chevron.

-Repeat the above steps with your remaining printed and solid squares.


-Sew the four chevron units together to form a long strip.

-Line up your solid strip, chevron strip, and solid rectangle as shown above and sew together.

And you're done! I hope you like my Chevron Fly block and be sure to check out the rest of the block's over at Jane's blog!

If you're on Flickr please be sure to add a picture of your completed block to the Desperate Housewife's Quilt group, and also to my own Tutorials and Patterns group over there!

Block Title: Chevron Fly
Desperate Housewife's Quilt Week 48
Finished Size: 8"