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My Prairie Girl Top is Finished! March 31, 2010

I love love love my Favorite Things “Prairie Girl” top (really more of a tunic length) made up in Anna Maria Horner “Little Folks Baby Bouquet Sweet” cotton voile!!!  The pattern pieces (obviously larger) and instructions were exactly the same as the “Little Prairie Girl” top (pattern review here).  You would have thought that I would have whipped it out with no problems, considering how easily I made the first.   Sadly, no, I ended up doing quite a bit of seam ripping on this one.  I got a bit full of myself and didn’t pay attention ~ arggh!

In all fairness though, this is the first time I have worked with cotton “voile” and had some difficulties working with it.  I had seen this voile referred to as “butter soft”, ha ha, no joking, it was slippery like butter in my hands.  Cutting it out was a breeze, but manipulating the buttery fabric to make the gathers was a tad tricky.  Distinguishing the right side of the fabric from the wrong side of the fabric was difficult at times, and I actually sewed the ties to the wrong side of the “skirt” (this top could also be made into a dress) and had to rip and start over.  You really MUST pay close attention when working with this fabric.

When finishing the seams on this top, I so wish I had had a serger!  Because voile is such a sheer light weight fabric, I ordered the Coats & Clark Dual Duty XP “Fine” thread (here) in white, and it worked superbly!   Fabulous thread, but I had problems with the tension on my Viking sewing machine when trying to finish my seams with a zigzag stitch.  After some fooling with it (and lots of seam ripping) I was able to get it just right.  It really is time to get it into the shop for a tune up!  I managed to get a clean enough zigzag on all of the seams, with the exception of the sides of the “skirt”, and after ripping them out a couple of times because the tension was too tight, decided to just use my pinking sheers and see what happened after washing.  I’ve washed it twice since, and there has been no signs of unraveling on any of my pinking cuts (I typically cut the excess fabric after zigzagging with pinking sheers).  Next time I will skip the zigzag stitch and just pinking sheer the edges.

As for the sizing, the instructions for the top suggest making the size according to hip size over pants.  Because of the adjustable ties on the back, I went with the size for the bust measurement (I have small hips) and the fit is fantastic.  I was debating between two sizes, ended up going with the smaller one, and am quite pleased with my choice (sorry Molly, no top for you this time!)

Even with all the difficulties I encountered working with this voile, I am so happy that I used it!  When you wear it, it does feel buttery soft next to the skin, is so feminine, and has such a nice drape!  I think the quilting cottons are a bit stiff and don’t flatter the figure the way this voile does.  I will definitely be ordering some more of these “Little Folks” voiles to make up a few more of these tunics!

Happy sewing,



Smitten March 29, 2010

Filed under: March 2010,Quilting,Sewing — The Threaded Nest @ 9:14 am
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conor quilt closeup, originally uploaded by Peg at Ivy Arts.

I am completely smitten with this quilt and these Laurie Wisbrun’s “Wellie” fabrics! The fabrics are Donkeys in Wellie Rain Boots and Wellie Rain Boots and are available in Laurie’s Etsy shop “Scarlet Fig” here.

You really NEED to stop by her blog and see her upcoming line “Tufted Tweets” for Robert Kaufman here.  I am going to start hoarding money to buy a yard of each print/color…hopefully it will be available in May!

I have joined several “Virtual Quilting Bees” and admit I MUST have these Scarlet Fig fabrics to use for them! Basically a Virtual Bee is where a group (usually 12) get together and make a block (or more depending on the Bee) to send to the person whose month it is. Some Bees you supply and mail the fabrics to the other members and in others you use your own stash. If you would like to learn more about Virtual Bees or you’d like to join one (or several!) yourself…check out the Quilting Bee Blocks flickr group here. Bees looking for members to join or members looking to join a Bee leave posts to which you then can respond.

PS- Mostly Marvelous Ms. Rabbit it sewn and stuffed and just needs to be embroidered and put together…will finish and post pics soon!

Happy sewing,


Some Little Rabbit March 28, 2010

Some little “Mostly Marvelous Ms. Rabbit” kit (available here) showed up at my house yesterday, just in time to get sewn up today for R.’s Easter basket!  Lucky for me she is spending the day with one of her little friends so I don’t even have to hide away to make this little rabbit.  How sweet is Annie from Bird and Little Bird, she even made me some felt carrots for Ms. Rabbit’s pocket?  Hoping to finish Semi-Fantastic Mr. Fox today as well…

If you missed my first post about these adorable kits, please check it out here!

Happy sewing,



Saturday Morning Waffles March 27, 2010

Filed under: March 2010,Recipes — The Threaded Nest @ 10:20 am
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My Mom is all about the Belgium Waffle!  Whenever we go visit “Amma”, she takes us to the Original Pancake House (if you are anywhere in Southern California you have to go ~ Web site here) and orders their tasty waffles every time!  Now R. is convinced that anything you get “out” has to be better “in” homemade by Mom and Dad, and so the (really rather desperate) search to find (as to not crush her idealized dreams of us just yet) the perfect waffle began.

I tried many recipes from the Web and finally found one that we all love in my trusty old (the first cook book I ever owned!) Better Homes and Garden New Cook Book (here).  These waffles are everything a waffle should be ~ light and airy, slightly crispy on the outside, delicious, and best of all…EASY to make!

Many a Saturday morning you will find us in the Villa Villekulla Cafe (what R. has named our kitchen) cookin’ up some of these waffles!


1 3/4 c. all-purpose flour

1 T. baking powder

1/4 t. salt

2 egg yolks

1 3/4 c. milk (we always use whole milk)

1/2 c. cooking oil

2 egg whites

In a mixing bowl combine flour, baking powder and salt.  In another bowl beat egg yolks slightly.  Beat in milk and oil.  Add egg yolk mixture to flour mixture all at once.  Stir just till combined but still slightly lumpy.

In a small bowl (I use my stand mixer) beat egg whites till stiff peaks form (tips stand straight).  Gently fold beated egg whites into flour and egg yolk mixture, leaving a few fluffs of egg white.  Do not overmix.

Pour 1 to 1 1/4 cups of batter onto grids of a preheated, lightly greased waffle baker.  Close lid quickly; do not open during baking.  bake according to manufacturer’s directions.  When done, use a fork to lift waffle off grid.  Repeat with remaining batter.  Makes 3 or 4 waffles.


Happy cookin’,



This Moment! March 26, 2010

Filed under: March 2010,This Moment! — The Threaded Nest @ 10:31 am


Change of Scenery March 25, 2010

Filed under: Homeschooling,March 2010 — The Threaded Nest @ 7:44 am

Blogging has become one of my favorite creative outlets (I passionately love writing!) so when I saw a “call for writers” on one of my favorite homeschooling blogs, I jumped at the chance to send over a couple of my favorite pieces in hope of becoming “published” somewhere other than my own blog.  I am delighted to share that I am one of the new contributing writers over at the Lessons Pathways Blog!  Please visit the blog here to read my latest post “Change of Scenery: Schooling at the Library” AND you can even read about my “superpower” (ha ha, really…I have one!) on their Our People page here.

Happy schooling,



Pinwheel Quilt Blocks! March 24, 2010

Filed under: Gifts,March 2010,Quilting,Sewing — The Threaded Nest @ 11:37 am
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pinwheel quilt, originally uploaded by oldredbarnco

Isn’t this pinwheel quilt top from Old Red Barn Co. (blog here) beautiful ???

I am so excited to share with you my latest quilting project! I was perusing my favorite quilting blogs this cold and snowy (yes, there was actually snow on the ground this morning ARGHHHH!) spring morning when I came across this post at One Shabby Chick (here) asking for 8.5″ pinwheel quilt blocks (super easy tutorial here) to be sent to her so that she can gather them up and send them over to Kathy at Magnolia Designs (“Quilts for Babes” project original story here ~ oh how I teared up when I read this post!).  Kathy will then turn these blocks into lovely little quilts for the babies in ICU over at the local (in Canada!) hospital where her son was born this past July.

Amber from One Shabby Chic is even offering a chance to be entered into an incredible giveaway ~ an assortment of Munki fabrics (I would LOOOVVVEE to add those to my fabric stash!) and a gorgeous (custom made for the winner!) patchwork pillow ~ for those who send her a quilt block(s) or an entire mini quilt (if you are totally inspired!) for this project. To join you just need to leave a comment on Amber’s post over at One Shabby Chic and she will email you with the details ~ but hurry up…the blocks need to get to her by May 1st!

I love getting R.’s input and help (she is so talented when it comes to selecting and pairing fabrics!) on projects we make to donate! I think is important to instill in our children the importance of giving to those in need, especially in fun and creative ways such as this. Donating money is great…but I think it is even better to donate something that is handmade with love! It is my wish that when R. is grown, she will look back at these projects with fondness in her heart, and carry on the tradition!

Now to find some fabrics for my blocks…

Happy sewing,