Tuesday, August 19, 2014

15-Minute T-Shirt Dress Pattern - FREE Pattern- Elephant and Piggie Version

One of the best things about blogging (for me at least) is that I've got all my old patterns and projects saved in one place, so they're easy to go back and find....which came in handy this week in making Becca a new T-shirt Dress. 

Even since our school librarian introduced us to Mo Willems and the Elephant and Piggie books (affiliate link), we've been huge fans.  (We love The Pigeon books as well.)  The Elephant and Piggie books are rather like graphic novels, for early readers and are so funny that they pull the most reluctant readers in.  For some reason they're a bit harder to run across in thrift stores and such (probably because no one wants to get rid of them), so we've ordered most of ours online (affiliate link) or request them from our library.


My sister knows we are fans because we've shared the books with her kids.  So when we were thrift store shopping a few weeks ago, she noticed this Elephant and Piggie shirt for me, I knew immediately it would make the perfect Kindergarten dress for Miss Becca.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

DIY Back to School Projects and Weekly Block Party

Sorry to be a bit late getting this weeks Block Party posted!
Tons of great DIY Back to school projects - Rae Gun Ramblings
DIY Back 2 School Projects
It’s time for another Block Party hosted by Making the World Cuter | Rae Gun Ramblings | Keeping It Simple Crafts | Pieces By Polly I hope you are all have a fantastic week.
Rae Gun guest posting picture
It’s me Marissa and I’m your host this week. I cannot believe how fast this Summer has flown by holy moley. Sadly it seems like it's already back to school season but luckily that means tons of cute projects and stationary shopping (I can't be the only one that loves stationary shopping right?)
Also if you haven't visited my blog in a while here are a few of the things I've been up to!
Now let’s see what you’ve been up to! Be sure to read over the guidelines…
  • We’d love it if you pinned the Back to School Round Up image above! :)
  • Link to a specific post, not your home page.
  • Don’t add links to promote giveaways, other link parties or your shops.
  • Visit and comment on at least 2 other links in the party.
  • Don’t link posts you’ve linked before.
  • This party starts Sunday @ 9pm EST and ends Friday @ midnight.
  • By entering a link, you give us permission to feature an image on our blogs. Proper credit and links will always be given.
  • Please link back to whatever blog you are linking from and let your readers know you joined the block party and invite them to do the same!

Friday, August 15, 2014

Hogwarts Letter - Kindergarten Edition - Harry Potter Inspired

Anyone have a child starting kindergarten who loves Harry Potter? I know a lot of kindergarten aged children don't know who Harry Potter is yet, but owing to big sister's obsession with Harry Potter and all the Harry Potter stuff I sell in my Etsy shop, Rebecca is quite a fan.

And when the mom of one of Becca's friends asked for a Hogwarts Letter for her kindergartener, I figured that Becca would like one too.  

It turns out that Hogwarts is expanding their mission of Magical Education to include a new primary school program and Rebecca has been excepted!

Being a mostly Muggle family who wishes we were wizards, we don't have an owl, so The Pigeon obligingly delivered the letter.

I suspect seeing me make and send out hundred's of Hogwarts Letter, probably lessons the magic of it a bit, but Rebecca was still really excited to read her letter.
 And being the awesome reader that she is, she was able to read most of the letter for herself.


I made a few modifications to the "real" text of the letter and supply list to fit a kindergartener.

Chillingsworth Halloween Fabrics at Sisters and Quilters

It's been a while since I've done a Sponsor Highlight, and I wanted to re-introduce you to Sisters and Quilters.  They've been a long time sponsor have a huge fabric selection.

The new lines of Halloween Fabric has been showing up at Sisters and Quilters, and I'm especially loving the Chillingsworth Collection by Echo Park Paper Co for Andover.  I'm not a big fan of "creepy" Halloween decor, and I think the main skeleton panel and the coordinating fabrics strike that perfect balance where designs are mature enough to be adult, but also not too creepy.  I'm really drooling over those texty prints.

(As a side note have you noticed Halloween stuff starting to pop up in stores? I was at Costco a couple weeks ago and they already had a large display of costumes out.)  It may be a bit early for costumes to be out but now is the time to start on those Halloween quilts and other decor projects if you want them finished in time to get plenty of use all through October.


You can either order yardage of any of the fabrics or go with one of Sisters and Quilter's Bundles.  They've got them in purple...
https://www.etsy.com/listing/194456019/chillingsworth-fat-quarter-bundle-of-4?ref=listing-4
...or orange .
https://www.etsy.com/listing/194444900/chillingsworth-fat-quarter-bundle-of-5?


And speaking of bundles, Sisters and Quilters really know how to put nice fabric bundles together.  They've got  hundreds of fat quarter bundles, half-yard bundles, and full yard bundles to choose from.

Or if you're like me and want to buy JUST the fabrics you love, one of my favorite things about their shop is that you can always order a custom bundle

They also have a Baker's Dozen Club going and this month you can get this fabulous Candy Corn selection with 13 fat quarters for the price of 12.
https://www.etsy.com/listing/192554521/bakers-dozen-fat-quarter-club-candy-corn?ref=listing-0



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Thursday, August 14, 2014

Hogwarts Quilt with Crest - Harry Potter Inspired

Here's another variation on my Harry Potter inspired quilts to show you!  I'm really excited about this one.  I've been taking custom orders for the Gryffindor Deathly Hallows and Hufflepuff Golden Snitch quilts I shared a while ago, and I had a customer contact me about making a quilt with all four houses on it at once, and this is what came of it.  I love how this one turned out so much that I'm now taking custom orders for this quilt in both my Pieces by Polly Quilts shop as well as my more Harry Potter focused Pieces by Polly Shop.

We messaged back and forth about changes to the pattern should be made to make it work, and decided what it really needed was a Hogwarts crest in the center.  It's simplified to just having the colors and not the mascots on it, but I love how it turned out.
The gorgeous fabrics came from several different places.  I picked many of them up from my local quilt shop, The Fabric Patch.  I've found really rich gold fabrics seem the hardest to find, but I've found that Sisters and Quilters has a lot of nice ones.



Puzzle Pieces Berries in Gold Fabric - From Sisters and Quilters

Give Thanks Houndstooth Fabric - From Sisters and Quilters
 




Autumn Festival Fat Quarter Bundle - From Sisters and Quilters


Puzzle Pieces Prisms Fabric - From Sisters and Quilters

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Hiking Cake: Tips and Tricks

It was Seth's birthday last week.  This was such a fun cake to make.  Seth loves being outdoors, and the outdoors love him.  He especially likes being out in the woods and having a path to follow where he can imagine he's the first person to explore it.

And of course when you're camping in the woods,  you have to have a campfire.  The "real" campfire on the cake was everybody's favorite feature.  And I have to say it was nice to have the candles really add to the charm of the cake, rather than being stuck in at the last minute because they don't really belong.

We decided a while ago that we will only "do birthday parties" at certain ages for the kids (kindergarten year, 8, 12, 16, etc).  The other years, I still make them a cake though.  I like to come up with some idea with them that represents something they're interested in...and is also in the do-able range.  

We went through several ideas for Seth's birthday cake, before settling on this one.  It turned out that Seth's birthmom Liz was able to come up for a visit just before Seth's birthday.  She happened to arrive the night that Eric had already scheduled with his brothers to take the cousins on an overnight hike.  (It's a year tradition that the school-aged kids go on an overnight hike sometime during the summer.)  Liz was getting in too late to go on the campout, but we didn't want her to miss out on time with Seth.  We decided that I'd drive her up first thing in the morning, so she could spend the day with Seth in the woods and hike back out with everyone.  (It's a mark of how happy Seth was to see Liz that he smiled so well for the picture.)

I thought that Eric had said it was an easy 1/2 mile hike...so I figured that since Seth LOVES the woods, and since Liz and the cousins were going to be there, then why not bring his birthday cake up....and so the hiking cake was concieved.  

It turned out that the hike was a 1 AND 1/2 miles, most of it uphill.  (There are three separate legs that are each 1/2 mile, so that must be where the communication broke down.)  Liz was a rock star, though, and carried Seth's cake all the way in.

Anyway, I didn't take step-by-step pictures for a tutorial, but I will give some tips, so you can make one yourself.  

Supplies Needed:  Frosting (I made a double batch to be safe, but single probably would be enough.), food coloring, Chocolate Rocks, Chocolate sandwich cookies (Oreas), Graham Crackers, Melting chocolate, ziploc baggies, parchment or wax paper, birthday candles

Optional Supplies: Piping bags and tips, leaf tip, bake even strips.
 

I baked the cake in an 8 by 3-inch pan {affiliate link} using bake even strips to keep the middle from doming too much.  Then I cut it in half, and added some filling.

Directions: 

Sunday, August 10, 2014

12 Refreshing Summer Drink Recipes and the Weekly Block Party

Welcome to this week's block party! Link up here and be seen on 4 fabulous blogs! Making the World Cuter, Rae Gun Ramblings, Keeping it Simple Crafts and Pieces by Polly!

This week I, Tiffany from Making the World Cuter will be your host! Tiffany at Making the World Cuter Be sure to check out a couple things I've been working on;
This week I picked out some delicious looking summer drink recipes to share, please pin the image below before you link up, and give props to these lovely bloggers who gave us these great recipes! :)

12 Refreshing Summer Drink Recipes

12 Refreshing Summer Drink Recipes
  Now let’s see what you’ve been up to! Be sure to read over the guidelines…
  • We’d love it if you pinned the Drink Recipes image above!
  • Link to a specific post, not your home page.
  • Don’t add links to promote giveaways, other link parties or your shops.
  • Visit and comment on at least 2 other links in the party.
  • Don’t link posts you’ve linked before.
  • This party starts Sunday @ 9pm EST and ends Friday @ midnight.
  • By entering a link, you give us permission to feature an image on our blogs. Proper credit and links will always be given.
  • Please link back to whatever blog you are linking from and let your readers know you joined the block party and invite them to do the same!


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Please show my sponsors some love...
The Pigeon Fabric - From Quilt Sandwich Fabrics

Berenstein Bear Fabric - You Keep Me in Stitches
 

Oh, The Places You'll Go  Bundle - From Sisters and Quilters

Wee Wander (Sarah Jane) Hexagon Quilt - Pieces by Polly


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