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Archive for 2007


Wednesday, March 7th, 2007

I’ve died and gone to heaven. I don’t need it… I must have it! I found out about it here.

How did Target slip this Janome past me?




photo credit: Target

Fabric Folding - The Stashformation

Sunday, March 4th, 2007

On my fabric folding quest, the quest to be organized… all it was was a plan. A plan for some day. My first step was to get all my fabric out of their Rubbermaid prisons and into my cupboards. Well that was easy cheezy (sans now I have to put all those Rubbermaid’s into the attic). So here you have it. Cupboard #1. The proverbial “BEFORE” shot. It’s been this way for well over a week. I could use the excuse I’ve been bit by a nasty flu bug, and, well, you know… it’s just an excuse. I figured hey, it’s behind closed doors so it must be nice and neat.

All that changed after Autum showed me what she’s done! Right there in my email were two of the most amazing BEFORE and AFTER photos of Autum’s glorious fabric stash transformation - a stashformation! Thinking our email chat was going to be about the weather and Lost… WOWIE ZOWIE she lit my fire! One cupboard. I’ll start with one cupboard! So here it is, my first cupboard! I want to get more shelves, but for now my colors will have to stack as they are.

I have to say, this was fun. Not so much the process, but knowing the end result was going to be magical. That’s really dorky (I’m borrowing that from Autum too), but it really is an amazing result. I know because my little girl power group of friends (MoKaCoCo as we call ourselves… Me, Karen, Connie “blop” & Cortne’) recently spent a few fun filled days refolding my friend Karen’s fabric (who I learned this folding method from) in her new studio. I wish I could show off some photos, but Karen’s studio is going to be featured in a mag so it’s all hush-hush for now and I could be thrown in the slammer if I did. You’ll just have to take my word for it that you’ll be in a When Harry Met Sally moment when you see it!

By looking at the first two photos, it looks like there’s the same amount of fabric. Oh not so mon ami! Hidden in all those piles was not just yardage… but fat quarters too! Lots and lots of fat quarters! Anything over ⅓ yard got folded with the 6½” ruler, anything below that - fat quarters and large scraps got folded with the 3½” ruler and put into one of the floor cupboards (that supports my work table).

A game of hide and seek, and I was “it”… all the little teenie tiny scraps got tagged and corralled into a little basket. Too precious and too usable to chuck - but too small to organize. So in a basket they went. I still can’t believe I found all these little gems hiding in my stash.

This is just one cupboard, and I have like five or six more cupboards to go. I feel like I’m on my way to my own little cotton bliss. Just looking at my neat fabric feels like that feeling you get when you walk into a Crate & Barrel or the Container Store - everything is just so tidy, colorful and pretty that it screams HAPPY. To have that feeling with my own stash is really something. If you’re reading this and think I’m Cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs… well, you’re actually kinda right. BUT… if you give this a try, I promise you will love it. Come. Come and drink the fabric folding Kool-Aid. Start with say 10 pieces of fabric. Just ten. You’ll get to piece ten and you’ll say to yourself, “just a few more”. And so on, and so on, and so on…

Big gooey non-contagious-flu-bug-free smack of a kiss to Autum!

AQUAfication… Semi WIP-slashed

Wednesday, February 28th, 2007

I’m feeling REALLY inadequate after seeing Heather Bailey’s studio. Sigh. My progress so far:


Fabric Folding

Monday, February 26th, 2007

This is the fabric folding method I used in my re-do (BTW, not quite yet a re-DONE… but I’m getting there!). Anyhoo… I’m not sure if this is the exact way Lois Hallock does it (I have her book… I guess it’s time I read the words instead of just looking at the pictures!). This is how I learned it from my friend Karen when we folded her fabric in her new studio (and Karen learned it from Lois). So here’s what I do:

1) Place folded yardage with selvedge to your left, the fold to your right. Line up your ruler on the fold. I use a 6½” ruler, but you can use what ever size you like. You can also let your shelf size/space dictate what size you want to make it.

2) Next just start rolling up. Flipping over and over until you get to the end. Let the ruler be your guide. It doesn’t have to be super tightly wound, but you don’t want it to slip and slide either.

3) When you reach the end, your last flap my need to be turned under just a bit. Kind of like how you do when you wrap something in tissue paper.

4) Slide out your ruler and now fold the folded end to the selvedge end. Stack your fabrics with the fold facing you. I use the same method with fatquarters, but with a skinnier ruler (I used a 3½” ruler). I let my shelves dictate how I was going to roll/fold my FQ’s, and rolled them on the 18” width of the fabric so they’d rest nicely on my narrow shelves.

My yardage cupboards have deeper shelves so finishing with an 10”/11” final unit worked perfect for me. If you don’t have a neat piece of yardage to begin with (and boy do I have a lot of those), just fiddle with your piece so you and up with a nice folded unit with now raw edges visible.

I hope I made sense of this! If you’re like me - the pictures tell the story and not the words. Drink the fabric folding Kool-aid… you won’t regret it!   Some before and after photos here.

Monkey Business

Sunday, February 25th, 2007

Still a WIP… but it’s progress (and still a mess). Every blog I’ve ever visited shows their best photos. All nice and neat, all lit well, all very pretty. I feel that if I show the mess, the more movitated I am to get this done. Like telling the world I weigh blah, blah, blah and then say how much weight I’ve lost! Pretty comes at a price I guess - and this is how I make my payments. I’m really, really diggin’ the aqua. I had serious reservations about it since this is a north facing room. It really works Elizabeth and Anne (when you get the opportunity that is, E)! It makes everything look more pretty (just like you said Autum!), vibrant and colorful - especially red.

I actually have started on organizing my fabric. I’m using the Lois Hallock method of folding over a ruler. I must say, I LOVE doing this and it’s something I will be dedicated to doing once I’m done with the re-do (and more fabric mysteriously enters my domain). All I need is one day all to myself, a full pot of coffee, a box of Cheez-It’s and a hearty stack of archived Terry Gross/Fresh Air podcasts - and I’m good to go!

I have these small cheapo cabinets that I’ve picked up at Lowes and Target, and about 5 of these cabinets are being dedicated to fat quarters (they also work as “legs” for my work table). They work PERFECTLY for fat quarters. Miss Madison keeping a watchfull eye on me… making sure I don’t start something new before finishing what I’ve already started.

One cabinet down… four more to go.  These are all just miscellaneous fat quarters.  I have a long road ahead to get all my 30’s fat quarters prettied up! And after the fat quarters comes the yardage! I won’t even say how much cupboard space is dedicated to that! I’m actually looking forward to getting the yardage all folded and stacked. I know for certain that I will be more apt to use it -vs- buying more once it’s all pretty and neat. I don’t know how to describe it other then it “feels” like I have my own little quilt shop. Well… that could be true as I’ve been to a few small quilt shops that had less fabric then I did. Not saying I have too much… just saying these shops had too little.

Here a WIP, there a WIP - Everywhere a WIP WIP

Thursday, February 22nd, 2007

WIP-slashedPlasma for the Sewing room AQUAfication! Light aqua? Robin’s Egg blue? Tiffany Box blue? For me it’s Aqualicious! Within a two year period my little sewing room/studio/office has gone from Wisper Yellow to French White (lt. pink) and now a WIP to Aqualiciousness. A few months back I bought a gallon of aqua, and I just thought it was too dark for this small 10×10 room. I have a nice big window with a heavenly view… but it faces north (Hey… Washington state! I see you!) and natural lighting is not the best.

So eventually the light bulb went on… Hmmm… a lighter shade. Yes… lighter, that’s it! Ding, ding, ding! I don’t like Behr paint, but I do like their colors. I took my swatch to my local Pratt and Lambert dealer and had it color matched to the shade lighter of what I wanted. And it was perfect! So now I’m painting wall by wall. I just have way too much stuff and wanted to tackle wall #2 so DH could get my new cupboards up. Why move crap two times when you can do it once! <— This is not a lesson I learned right away. I’m learning, I’m learning.

WIP-slashedAnyhoo… The current state of things looks like a baby nursery on crack. Wall by wall, pile-o-stuff moving from spot to spot… de-pinking has begun and the AQUAfication has started. Changes are a comin’! Already my teeny tiny little space looks like a sunny day, and since this is the North Oregon Coast… I need all the sunny days I can get! Even if it’s faux sunshine!

My other WIP is not for me. It’s a shop quilt for Anna Lena’s. Darling, darling Dick & Jane fabric from Michael Miller.

I love it, but not something I’d buy for me personally. I do see myself buying some of those 40’s/50’s looking graphic fabrics. I love it! Unless I’m inspired by something amazing to make with this (maybe an apron), this is not on my personal shopping list. I blame this on the fact that we had German children’s books when we were kids. Not the sweet Dick & Jane… we had end-up-in-therapy-worthy scary crazy maniac books like Der Struwwelpeter! And while I’m at it… we had to go to German School (in Oakland) on Saturaday’s. Yup - we missed out on the Saturday Morning Cartoon experience. And people wonder why I don’t get The Road Runner and the whole Acme gig!

Happy Birthday!

Saturday, February 17th, 2007

Ok, it’s not really a birthday celebration. BUT… seeing what everyone got in the Potholder Swap is like being at a birthday party and seeing all the gifts being opened! There is a Flickr photo pool and you can see lots of photos there. Not everyone is on Flickr, but are posting on their blogs. Below are the partners if you want to see what they’ve posted on their blogs. Fun, fun, fun!

Angelina & Missy
Wende & Jodi
Michelle & Heidi
Gemma & Rosa
Georgina & Mª Engracia
Cynthia & Mika
Paula & Michelle
Claire & Amy
Cindy & Michelle
Lauri & Connie
Angie& Anne
Molly & Jessica
Raesha & Monique
Jackie & Laurie
Autum & Me
Carolina & Encarna
Anita & Dora
Karyn & Sunny
Sarah & Tangee
Simonetta & Nihal
Rachael & Tamara
Jen & Denise
Kate & Jill

If you don’t have Flickr and want it, you can get it free here! Before sending your swap photos to the pool, first you must set up an account on Flickr. Next - to join the pool (no diving in the shallow end please):

1. Log into your Flickr account
2. Go to the Potholder Swap Pool page.
3. Underneath the “Search discussions” field you’ll see a link that says “»join this group”. Click it.
4. Go back to your flickr account and click on the photo(s) you want to put in the pool.
5. On the top left of the photo is a small icon that says “SEND TO GROUP”.
6. A menu will drop down and the PHS-Winter 2007 icon will be there… click on it and your photo is in the pool! Tadah! Easy cheezy!

I thank you all so much for participating! It was so much fun for me to host this swap and I’ve met THE MOST amazing and talented women from all across the globe. It sounds really cheezy and corny, but it was such a pleasure for me for you to have enjoyed this experience, especially if you made a friend from this. A special thank you to the first time swappers who choose my swap to jump into! :) Bloggy-love super power activated!

Swappy Love & Mailbox Joy

Saturday, February 17th, 2007

My WONDERFUL potholder swap partner was Autum of Creative Little Daisy!

Before I say more about all the lovely things she made and sent me, I must tell you that we had no idea what each of us was sending each other. Autum told me her fave colors, and I told her mine. Our packages to each other were literally two ships passing in the night (more like two USPS trucks rambling down the highway in the wee hours of the morning). So as it turns out, each of us had made the other two potholders (you can see we’re not blog-law abiding citizens and broke the rule of sending ONE potholder)! In my case, I couldn’t decide which one to send her, so I sent her both. In Autum’s case, she not only sent me two… but she made this darling crafting apron too! OMG… I love what she made me and her workmanship is so beautiful and skillful! The potholder has a darling 30’s looking teakettle that she embroidered AND it has one of Autum’s signature yo-yos! It’s JUST DARLING!

The ovenmit I just love too, and no way am I going to let food goop get on it. I’m thinking of hanging it on the wall and popping some of my vintage enamal spoons in it. And the pot holder I think I will use, but for only something sweet like serving tea to my friends. Who am I kidding… I’ll be serving wine! But I may serve tea just because!

And if that wasn’t enough… there was more! Autum sent me four fabrics, all beautiful and all something I myself would pick out! All these fabrics are delicious! I don’t know if I watch too much TV (watching shows like Lost and Hereos), but I’m convinced Autum has a super hero power and can read my mind! What did I send Autum? You guessed it… four little swatches of fabric (or as Autum calls it… “yo-yo ammo”! Wild, eh!

Of course the icing on the cake was how Autum wrapped it all up. She did EXACTLY how I did it (but bigger and better). White tissue wrapped and tied with ric-rac. Is that not too wild! Autum also used the darling daisy trim (I love, love, love daisies) and a generous amount of red/white floss I had never seen or heard of (but instantly fell in love with) called “baker’s twine”.

Everything Autum made - made me smile and I’m feeling so blessed. Not blessed because I scored (and boy did I score!)… but because such a beautiful person did such beautiful things for me! Thank you Autum!


Thursday, February 15th, 2007

5553Has anyone ever done something for you that was just so BIG? Really, really, really big? Well… that happened to me this afternoon! Thanks to Pam, I got to experience something so big it made me bawl. Who knew that Pam going to the dentist today was going to make me cry!

So you see this photo of this house and I’m going on and on about a gift from Pam. Are you thinking, WOW… did Pam buy her a house? I guess I should back up a bit. At some point in our young lives, Pam and I were neighbors in a then little community nestled in the hills of the East Bay (of the San Francisco Bay Area). We didn’t know each other, that we know of. Who knows… maybe we’ve met before when we were little and don’t know it. Kind of like the TV show Lost where everyone has crossed paths at some point. Anyhoo… In Pam’s busy crazy day, she takes the time and effort (and the curious stares of onlookers) to snap some shots of the first home I lived in. I was overwhelmed by her kindness to do something like this for me!

So this is where I lived for the first few years of my life in the early 60’s. My mom said they paid a hefty 12k for it (new) in 1960. I just Zillow’d it and it’s now worth over 500k. We didn’t live there long, and soon moved to Orinda there after. Oh, and that house we lived in in Orinda… now worth about 1.5 million. And no… my folks didn’t see a dime of those big bucks from either house. But I do have the best memories, and those are priceless!

And now the part of my story that’s a zinger. This isn’t actually my childhood home. It’s the one next door to our old house where an elderly couple named Phil and Ina lived. Regardless… it’s the fact that Pam went and did this for me that’s priceless and brought me so much joy. I wish you all some PAMKITTYMORNING in your lives!

The Other Side

Wednesday, February 14th, 2007

WOW… I’m beyond thrilled and touched by all the comments you guys left for me on my New Digs/100th Postaversay post! Have I said WOW yet? Thank you is not a heartfelt enough word, but for lack of a better word… THANK YOU!

Anyhoo… Angelina and Michelle prompted me to post about the switch from Blogger to WordPress. I’m far from an expert on blogging matters and programs, but this is what works for me.

When I first started blogging (pre Happy Zombie) I wanted something free. The best free choices for me were Blogger, WordPress.com and Vox. WordPress and Vox gave me no option to hack my template. I like to “decorate”, so those two were out. Plus Vox was too myspace-ish for my taste (not that there’s anything wrong with that). So I went with Blogger. I could do what I wanted with my template and that was a HUGE factor in my decision to go with Blogger.

I like TypePad and like visiting blogs on TypePad… but I didn’t want to pay the minimum fee and still not be able to have full control over my template. Like paying rent and not being able to paint my walls or hang pictures. Blogger had recently updated some of their functions (categories, faster updates, blah, blah)… but not enough for me.

I really liked what WordPress.com had to offer. Being able to edit comments, responding to comments via email, and easy commenting for my visitors. I’d been having a lot of problems with posting comments on blogger… either people emailed me saying they couldn’t comment on my blog or me not being able to comment on other blogger blogs. And of course the biggie… I’m a Mac user and Blogger is NOT Mac/Safari friendly. Every time I wanted to link a word I had to code it by hand. Any html in a post I had to code by hand. It gets old. I was not willing to open Firefox or Camino just so I could write a post.

I kept thinking about moving my blog to my website. I figured I might as well use it for something other then storage. And then… it was like the clouds parted revealing sunshine when Wende left me a comment about WordPress.org. I thought to myself… wow… Wende’s blog is from WordPress? Hmmm… I’ve loved the ease of posting comments and reading her blog every day (ok, maybe even TWICE a day!). Hmmm… I must look into this WordPress.org further.

So come to find out, there are two WordPress programs. The WordPress.com is where they host it for you. The WordPress.org is where you host it on your site and you have full control of it. Hmmm… the latter sounded really good! I was really hesitant at first. UGH… changing my url, loosing all my posts and comments… thinking I had to start over! OH BUT NOT THE CASE. Wether you go with WordPress.com or WordPress.org, there’s a nifty little easy cheezy button that lets you import your Blogger posts and comments! WOW… sign me up!

So I took the plunge and set up a WordPress.org program (free BTW) on my site. I did find a glitch, and the easy cheezy import button wouldn’t allow an import from “new blogger”. Putting my thinking cap on, I opened a WordPress.com account and imported my Blogger posts and comments to that. I then imported my new WordPress.com account’s posts and comments into my WordPress.org (this blog here) account. It worked! Did you follow that? I couldn’t got from point A to point B… but a little pit stop and I’m there! Or HERE I should say! Some of my transfered posts are a little tweaky and the commentors names lost their hyperlinks, but I can fix that with editing (some day when I have time, hahaha). Tweaky or not… I have them and that’s all that matters to me. And not only is WordPress.org easy cheezy… there are HUNDREDS (I’m guessing over a thousand) templates to choose from should you want a pre made template.

Blah, blah, blah… I ramble on sometimes and say nothing. I hope I made sense of that all! If you have questions… post a comment! Thanks to WordPress I can answer you right in your comment (like Wende does!). I’m givin’ up the Bloggy Love to Wende who showed me the light! Applause, applause, applause!

Farting around with needle & thread and then blogging about it.

Monica Solorio-Snow
Happy Zombie

Pacific Wonderland
Astoria, Oregon

This blog's content, photos and original graphics/artwork are copyrighted. Please do not use, copy, reproduce or distribute. All projects are strictly for personal/non-commercial use only. © 2006-2016

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