cover up.

when i bought my sewing machine, i vowed to make a cover for it. how hard could it be, right? no problem, except i would have to put aside my three million other projects to tackle that one. such an easy project, yet it always got relegated to the back burner. five years later i finally reached the moment when it was time to make the cover. i pondered my stash of fabric...not wanting to use my "good" fabric for such a mundane project, yet still hoping for something adorable to stare at when the machine is not in use. enter mrs. nipper knapp of my mom's a nerd.

some of you are probably wondering who on earth is this mrs. nipper knapp lady that keeps cropping up in my posts. well, i met her two years ago at the wedding of one of my best friends. she was the photographer, but also the wife of the groom's cousin. i had heard that she was crafty and when i met her i thought she was perfectly lovely, but we were at a wedding, not a quilting bee, and she was busy photographing all the festivities. we did not have a chance to dive into our shared interests. after the wedding we became facebook friends and it was quickly evident that our aesthetics are closely aligned. and she makes stuff. all kinds of stuff. and she has a project list that rivals my own. but most precious to me, she too is spellbound by fabric, nifty sewing projects, and quilts. at first i was afraid she would think i was stalking her, because i was enamored of all the projects she spotlighted on her blog. but then i gave up any pretenses and just gushed my excitement for everything. since then i have happily helped her with some of the technicalities of sewing and quilting and she has provided ridiculous amounts of inspiration. she has a superb knack for discovering hidden gems and has singlehandedly doubled the list of things i want to make. so of course, when it was time to design my sewing machine cover, it was one of her finds that led me to the dark side...turning a project from super simple to ridiculously complicated. and i would not have it any other way. thanks mrs. nipper knapp.

a close-up view of the sewing machine cover.
the find is a tutorial on comfortstitching for an applique of a girl on a tree swing. i decided to take the "easy" route and skip the girl and the tree, but i used the featured applique technique. i created a colorful strip with  all my scraps of fabric and used it as the centerpiece of my sewing machine cover. the whole project took six hours, which even i will admit is ridiculous for an appliance cover, but the results are super snazzy. i share a bedroom with my sewing corner, so this is one of the first things i will see every morning. not a bad way to start the day.

the two sides of the sewing machine cover atop its precious cargo.


wonky windows #12.

time for another installment of wonky windows into my world (i seem to have a limited number of actual windows, so we are liberally using the figurative definition of windows).

i kill plants. fast. but not on purpose. i know i am not the only person who is incapable of keeping foliage in a living format, but i might be the only person raised by a gardening genius to completely lack any ability to keep alive any type of plant. even those so-easy-a-baby-could-raise-it plants seem to have me stumped. the worst part is that i refuse to accept that plants are dead. take the one in the photograph. it has looked precisely that spritely for approximately two years...most people would have long since realized that they lost the battle. not me. 

people love to give me gifts of turtles. although i do think they are rather amusing looking little beings, i have never professed an undying love for turtles. yet for some reason when people see turtles, they must think of me. not that i mind - turtles are kind of adorable. the one on the left came from my grandmother's collection. the set in the middle is a lovely hanging decoration with lots of turtles that was bestowed upon me for a birthday a few years ago. the one on the right was given to me for christmas during my freshman year of college...his name is humphrey jellicus rex the third, and he has slept on or near my bed every night since he entered my life.

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the grand finale.

hoot! hoot!

for most of the world, christmas is long gone. but we are in our own little world in miami. i promised the darling ms. pumpky that i would have a gift for her, but it had to wait until after the overwhelming pre-christmas days. we agreed to exchange gifts shortly after the new year, but well, i am a giant stinker and was not ready until yesterday. see, i had this brilliant plan to make her a lovely bag for school. sadly, the "perfect" bag that i made was lovely, but totally not perfect for her. time for a new plan, but i was completely stumped. and then i remembered the last time i visited her home and froze on her couch, because she has lost her throw blanket. not sure how you lose a throw blanket, but she did. and i was cold. so i thought to myself, the lass needs a couch blanket!!! and i had the perfect idea, because not too long ago i was trying to convince mrs. nipper knapp that she could indeed quilt a quilt and it did not have to be scary (she has since made and quilted a perfectly lovely quilt...bravo!). as an example i showed her this positively genius quilt by katie did. of course, ever since i found this design i have wanted to make one and now was the perfect chance. so i wasted nary a minute and headed promptly to joanns to procure the materials.

now this quilt was intended as a one-day project. but, well, i am six months pregnant and there is only so much i can do in one day. plus, although i have done little bits here and there, this was my first true experience with applique. i could not resist adding some cute-as-a-button owls. but, ummm...fusible interfacing? what's that? oh right, you need it to applique and apparently if you do not follow the directions rather precisely, things do not work out so lovely. anyhow, long story short, this turned into a four day quilt, but i am pleased as punch with the results, so the time spent was well worth it. oh and ms. pumpky was quite simply delighted.

my first experience with fusible interfacing. it took a few hours, but i finally had the two little owls ready to be appliqued.

the finished quilt. ready just in time for christmas in february. yahoo!

i am completely enamored of this binding fabric.

the back. pretty purple is pumpky's preference.


wonky windows #11.

you might think i have some sort of fancy explanation for why i disappeared for two weeks. not exactly. all i can say is that lately my night owl tendencies have been completely overshadowed by this baby growing in my belly. i have been asleep by 9:30pm (at the latest!!) and the five hours between the gym and the bed are fully consumed with thinking about food, finding food, eating food, showering, and starting back on the food process. not to mention i probably spend an hour a day enthralled by my kicking and wriggling pringle.

but it is time to share a few pictures with you...

a glimpse into life as a teacher. last week this kid decided to throw a five day tantrum. this lovely pose, which was accompanied by a loud wailing, is from the playground where he was in timeout. there was not much i could do about his perpetual fit, so i just ignored him. i am hoping that if my own children decide to try this tactic, i will be half as calm as i am when it is one of my students. i can see you scratching your head wondering why i did not speak with his parents. i did. they informed me that he was upset because i did not give him a birthday present in november. ummmm...right then.

taken through the window of steak & shake, pringle's favorite restaurant. we eat burgers and fries and top it off with a mint chocolate chip milkshake. YUM!! but i digress. these absolutely delightful and yes, HOT PINK plants seem to be all over miami. every time i see them, i think to myself, "if i were a plant, this is the plant i would be." you know, simple with a flare.

i love bread. this particular display is one of four, that's right, FOUR, bread displays in my favorite little market. i would like this assortment to come to my kitchen every day. actually i would like this whole market to come to my house everyday. is there anyone that is not secretly obsessed with bread? i could eat fresh baked bread all day long. in fact the mister and i typically finish a baguette in two days or less, which means we buy about 4 baguettes a week. yikes.

interested in participating in wonky windows? check out the instructions.