About Me

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Great Falls, Montana, United States
I love creating art. I love the Creator! And through that love, I find a little slice of heaven on earth and I give Him all the glory! It's a great adventure and I'm excited to see what's around the bend! Come join me, won't you?

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

sweet summer days ~ my top ten list this week!

hi friends...

sweet... sweet summer!

and just a word of hi, and happy labor day!  i hope you enjoy a wonderful weekend wherever you may be.  thanks for all the cool stories on the giveaway post.  if you haven't entered, please do!  it doesn't have to be a story, ya know.  just one word.  or two.  or three... or whatever!  

and you just never know what ELSE i may throw in?!

in the meantime ~

what i love about retirement {these are only the top ten list of 1000 gifts this week!}

1.  playing with the pups early mornings {it's never too early for a dip in the pool!} lol
2.  cleaning house whenever i want!
3.  opening up the windows and enjoying the beautiful summer air all day long in the house and in the studio!
4.  eating lunch whenever i... want to!
5.  making good homemade treats and meal planning
6.  keeping up on the laundry! lol
7.  picking fresh tomatoes and zucchini in the warm morning sun
8.  watching the "ten dollar dinners" {just once a day} by melissa d'arabian on the food network!  {love it!}
9.  listening to christian radio broadcasts all day if i want to!
10.  reading a super thick book, a new one by diana gabaldon {it's 5 inches thick i swear!}  and taking my very own... sweet time.
11.  bonus!  sewing!  planning classes.  and more... sewing and quilting!!


"there's a tomato thief in the garden...  did you see her?"



oh yes... missy savanah... i see "her" all right!
have you ever seen a tomato-pickin' dog?
maybe a tomato-eatin' dog...
but one that actually picks them off the vine and eats them?
nope.
it's a first for me!
georgia is not impressed, however!!!
but then again, she has a one-track...
or make that two track mind.
pool.
and ball.

who me?
happy beautiful summery days, indeed!  
tomato thiefs and psycho border collies included!
i'm a blessed little camper girl right at home!
blessings on your day, and holiday!
xo
leslie

Monday, August 25, 2014

leather zippy pouch and giveaway ~

happy august day to you all ~

~today is the day~  
it's the  atkinson designs zippy strippy pouch giveaway! 
 this is the pattern inspiration 
behind all the pouches i've posted about lately.  
and i'm giving this pattern away: 
{but wait! there's more}

but first, another pouch to showcase... i spotted this scrap bit of leftover faux leather in my studio and i thought it would be a fun challenge to see what kind of zippered bag it would turn out to be... wondering how it would be to stitch through the layers for attaching the zipper, etc. well, it was really easy, and sewed up very nicely!  {always use a 90/12 or even a larger 100/14 topstitch needle or a leather needle}. 
another opportunity to employ a gorgeous ribbon from my tapestry ribbon collection, as well as fun little words. notice the fill-in-the-blank phrase?  

to enter the givewaway, you must comment, giving your most creative answer that would complete the sentence above.    i will pick one winner from the most creative answers!  

"once upon a time, a great while ago, far beyond the edge of the world, there lived...  ________ {fill in the blank}.

and the giveaway prize includes a few embellishments to go with the pattern, so you can perhaps share, or use them in your own style.

 here's a couple of ideas:


even the zipper is included, and a few very autumn toned strips!
-- 3 yo-yos {including a hand-dyed silk velvet one}!
-- tatted lace!
-- a bit of iron-on crystal bling!
-- two styles of ribbons!
-- 2.5" strips in fall tones {enough for one small or medium bag} {note: there is no lining or batting provided in this kit}!
-- pre-fused, iron-on words!
-- paper fabric hearts! {made by me} that can be fused/stitched on
-- pre-fused, pre-cut fabric flowers! {the yo-yo's would be fun on top!}
-- and a black 14 inch zipper to coordinate!

all the colors and trims you need to make a super fun autumn bag {and a few more!} in your own style.

the deadline to enter a comment is 
12 pm Montana time, Monday, September 1st. 
 I will post the winner on  Tuesday, September 2nd.

do you want to hear how i answered this phrase? 
{i quilted it on the back of this bag} 

 "who knew she was God's art."

"you are not your art.  you are God's art."  {emily freeman from the book one million ways}
i can't wait to read all your fun answers to this phrase!  

hope you like the little kit i put together!  in appreciation and celebration of a sweet summer and an even sweeter fall season.  

blessings! 
soli deo gloria 
xo
leslie

Sunday, August 24, 2014

indian summer yo yo zippered pouch ~ atkinson design

hello and hope your weekend was fine and dandy!

ours was.  lots of rain here, much needed.  and boy, does it put autumn in the heart, with 48 degrees and a driving wind. but...  i'm ready for just a few more 80 degree days  {for a little while longer, pretty please Lord!}

this bag says autumn for sure, and actually, maybe it says "indian summer" even better!

and what a better reason do you need to zip up one of these little darlings?!  none!  just go sew it!

and  i {really} love this whole look.  batiks. autumn colors. and velvet.  oh, and yo-yos!  i cannot forget to mention those in tribute to my really sweet yo-yo sister... lisa swan semansky!  

y'all heard of the ya ya sisterhood, right?  {well i'm not sure i have but let's just go with it}...

well, lisa and i are the yo-yo sistahood sista's!  

okay.  best i stop now!  
she and i make yo-yos.  and we share fabric.  well, i should amend that to say i share my scraps with her!  and it's a real joy. here's my proud little stash of hard-won yo-yos. they are someday to go on a large, beautiful, in-your-dreams quilt, right?  well, maybe.  one can hope.

at any rate, they are just a little treasure trove of color, and sizes to pick from:
now one thing about velvet yo-yos.

they are a pain!

yes, a real paint to make!  not so easy to make into yo-yos, and to get all those delicate little folds to play nice with each other and to make a sweet little round shape  but so worth it when one perseveres.  and i did.  

because the high maintenance ... is just worth it!!


see what i mean?  

doesn't it just make that bag?  

{well, i made the bag}... but you know ~ 

it does make the bag!



so ... i sure hope you'll be back to read the next post in which i will have the details about the atkinson bag giveaway, to include a pattern, and embellishments so you can make your own bag.

AND...  i have one more bag left to show, and i'm excited about it.  {it gives me more ideas}!

blessings to you ~ thanks for all the fun comments, too!

xo
leslie

Friday, August 22, 2014

a silk flower and a zippy pouch {or two} ~

good morning all ~

it's good to have supplies that cross over!  as many of you may already know, i love to dabble and play with mixed media, creating my own papers and fabrics with paints, sprays, inks... stencils... and well, you know! 

so how thrilled was i that i could take this darling silk flower and turn it into the color i really wanted to go with this sparkling autumn-themed bag?  yup.  really thrilled!

so from bright happy yellow, to a deep, rich tangerine is what i wanted.  exactly.  and it was fun, easy, and fast!

and a few minutes later after it had dried, i free motion attached it to the bag.  and the velvet?  oh!  love the look!  the piece of velvet seen here was embossed with wood stamps, and while it is definitely a high-maintenance fabric, i can deal with it for one small strip or two!  it came from the talented hands of my friend, chris daly, when i purchased it from her etsy shop a couple summers ago!  it is just a small fat eighth size i believe, and it was fun to be able to put it to a happy little pouch, right here and now! 
autumn... almost here... and a cute little pouch that goes with the season, perfectly:
and this time i decided to put a little wristlet on the bag, just to try it out.  it's such a pretty bag, and i love the tapestry-styled ribbon on it, too.  


and one more ~ once again, in the charming vintage style  using some beautiful vintage lace.  i love being able to use some of these beautiful trims that have been tossed away by others, or deemed unwanted, or unusable! 

i {still!} have a couple more sweet bags to show, as i have been digging through inspiration in the studio!  AND i will  be giving away the atkinson designs zippy strippy pouch pattern. so please come on back ya hear?  and perhaps... there will be more to the giveaway....? 

enJoy!
xo
leslie 

Thursday, August 21, 2014

she's a little bit vintage ~ zippered pouch

hi and good morning to you all ~

yes.  {more} sweet little zippered pouches!  hope you'll stick with me as i show some of my latest inspirations... i'm really excited about all the creative possibilities with this fun project, and i can't wait to get some classes started ~ at least locally, hopefully!
so... i have this "vintage" stash of linens; some of them given to me, some of them purchased from etsy a while ago.  they are not in good enough shape to "use" per say, as some are stained and have holes in them.  this particular one was a hankerchief, and i cut it into quarters, using the best part of it, and carefully stitched around the perimeter, attaching it onto this beautiful colorway of periwinkle blues and red purple batik fabric which is the base of this bag:
i did seriously consider free motion stitching around the raised images... but felt it might further damage the delicate linen of this vintage piece. so i left it well-enough-alone!  {although if i was a hand-quilter}.... it would be very charming, i'm pretty sure... 
these beautiful zippers!  apparently, they are all the popular thing now, as i see there is a great collection in many quilting stores locally.  i'd guess there are at least 25-30 colors, with 2-3 color values in each major color.  so very fun, and fairly inexpensive, as far as notions go, that is!  $1.15 is what i paid here.
i have a couple more design goals to go... stick with me?!  i'm getting ready to head into autumn with my color schemes!  and of course... dab into the yo-yo stash i've been making in my "down" time!  

wait... is there any down time?  nope!  it's all really sweet. really.  sweet!  and i love it!

blessings for a sweet day, today.
xo
leslie

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

zippered pouches ~ peaceful n' thoughtful

good morning ~

here's the continuing love story i'm having with making the zippy pouches, using jelly roll fabric cuts.  this time from basic grey in neutrals.  {such a fun change for me!}

because... as i was cleaning up studio from last week's sewing fiesta, i found some great ribbons and buttons to use for this color way of designs.
and it was satisfying to use a foot that is a dream to put to work sewing on buttons ~ it's the bernina #18 button-sew-on foot.  and i love it!  
my bernina machine has a special "button-sew-on" stitch, too.  it automatically drops the feed dogs, and all you do is press the foot pedal... that is, after ensuring your needle and width fits the two holes in the buttons.  the machine stops automatically when it is finished, and it takes securing stitches, too, leaving some 'wiggle-room' space for the button, should it be used on a shirt for practical needs.
it's a pretty "peaceful" process!
and, as you can see below, i added the word "be" to this bag, as in "be peaceful."  {yes and amen!}

and just a simple little checkered ribbon for the pull:

this is the second bag in the same color way, except for the addition of the turquoise batik.  love this!!  especially since i was able to use scraps leftover from making rachel's placemats.
button~button... who's got the button? it's a dive into a pretty jar full of buttony goodness to find it~!
 one thing about doing two bags at the same time, in the same colorway... i stitched the zipper enclosures at the same time.... leaving a nice big tail at the back and the front to keep from unnecessary thread entanglements!  {i don't appreciate that drama!}  hint:  make sure at least one side of the feed dogs is solidly under at least most of the fabric.  hold onto the thread tails when you begin, too... {and a straight-stitch plate is very nice for this part of the sewing}.
tips:  line up your ruler with the center seam and point of the bag, in order to ensure a great seam meet-up.  



i free motion quilted the words, "she is thoughtful" on this bag, using magnifico thread ~ my favorite.

did you happen to catch the additional embellishment using silver dazzle thread {also from superior threads}? using that favorite and oh-so-easy, and quite lovely #39 couching foot ~ aka the clear embroidery foot from bernina.  i think it adds that special touch... {but it may be just me?!} you know if you've been reading my blog... i use this alot.  alot!   too bad it was a cloudy day, and the metallic thread isn't picking up the shine, like it does for real.
and they make a lovely duo of zippy strippy bags:
 my zippy pouches are now listed in the etsy store, too! 

so thanks for hanging out with me and my bags!!  lol
blessings on your day!
xo
leslie
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