San Francisco Bazaar!!!

This morning the Wee Girl and I went down to San Francisco’s Fort Mason to attend San Francisco Bazaar, my favorite local (and free!) craft show.  It isn’t the kind of craft fair you might remember from your childhood, with doilies and cheesy stuff.  This is funky, cool, edgy, very San Francisco and very awesome!  If you are in the area, it’s really, really worth the effort to attend.

Some of my favorites this year:

Geeky neckties for your favorite fandom!  By Pepe and Ale,

Geeky neckties for your favorite fandom! By Pepe and Ale,


Beautiful rings!


I heart this!!!


soooo cute!


I love this idea!


These little guys!!!


Bowties ARE cool.


Upcycled potholders!


If I didn’t already have my soot sprite mug from 2 years ago….

IMG_7334 They have really neat items– from lovely inspirational quotes to the San Francisco skyline to slightly dirty jokes…. And the lad who talked to us was super nice and friendly.


Upcycled fingerless gloves! Really, really lovely!


Fantastic woodwork!


If only I could rock this look, it would be so handy!


Who doesn’t need an angry kitty tote bag??!!

The Girl was such a good sport while I looked at everything (it helped that lots of vendors have dishes of complimentary sweets for the taking, and that we had her friend and his family join us, and that there is just so much CUTE STUFF!).  My only regret is that I knew that Chibi had a Star Wars cloth bucket for sale and I didn’t buy it, and it sold after we had been there.  That’s the risk with hand-made/one of a kind!  You can’t just put it on your wish list, because it might not be available later!

Luckily the Wee Boy had a long, well-timed nap, so we were able to continue our mother/daughter time while ignoring housework.  Walking around amongst so much creativity and artistic talent, I left feeling as refreshed as if I’d spent the morning at the beach or in the woods.   With such a relaxing start, the kids behaved better than usual all day, I was much more patient than ususal… I declare it the best Sunday we’ve had since…. last year’s San Francisco Bazaar??


Randomly, on a Friday…

This afternoon I finally got around to hemming some jeans I bought on Cyber Monday. I’m not usually into buying things a certain way on specific days, but 40% off was a good deal and I desperately needed a new pair.

I think they turned out fine. At least I didn’t notice anyone staring or pointing, so that’s good.

Then, since I had my machine out, I finished up some ornaments the Wee Girl and I had started a few weeks back. They turned out cute but rather large. Next time I’d make them smaller, and not connect the pair of mittens.  The pattern for the trees had buttons as ornaments, but my collection of buttons isn’t that cute, so I sewed on beads instead.  I still have a penguin ornament that I prepared to sew, but it seems to have disappeared….


After school pick up and a short stint at a park, the kids and I hit Blick for some new watercolor paper and left with a bit more than that. Of course. I loved these paper dolls but didn’t get them.  Maybe they’ll show up in my Christmas stocking….




I love the art supply store a little too much.  There are so many things I’d love to buy or try out, but my time is so limited, and I have too many hobbies already.  I guess it’s a good dilemma to have.  After all, you will never, ever see me write that I’m bored!

After bed time, I started in on my new watercolor paper, just messing around a bit, and playing with ideas for holiday cards or nengajyo.

I used to draw and paint so much, but since having kids I have done so little. It feels so rusty, but nice to be back trying it out.

NaKniSweMo and quilt progress

The day started off well– at my sock knitting group I casted on for my Honeybee Cardigan for NaKniSweMo.

Time to cast on!

Time to cast on!

The bottom ribbing may be done, or may need another row or two.  I didn’t have my tape measure handy.  I stopped by Imagiknit for metal needles– I did my gauge swatch on bamboo and it was painfully slow.  I hope these lace needles will speed things up!

Later, due to a missed nap (boy) and a possible illness (girl), I had extra time for crafting.  I spent it ALL on the Wee Girl’s new quilt.  I cut all the sashing and the binding from the $%*& duvet cover.

Sashing and binding

Sashing and binding

Then I pinned the sashing to the quilt top strips, and voila!

Quilt top!

Quilt top!

A completed quilt top!  You might notice where I forgot to cut off the selvedge edge.  Ummm, design feature?  I’ll also need to add a patch in one spot where there wasn’t enough seam allowance for some reason, and if I don’t fix it now, it’ll soon become a hole.

I don’t know about you, but I see some improvement here over my first quilt.  First of all, I was more precise with cutting 13″-wide pieces, and secondly, I squared up the pieces that weren’t even after sewing this all up. The extra care should make the quilting step easier and neater than my first quilt.

I also took the time to press all the binding so that it’s ready when the time comes to sew it on!

Binding -->ready!

Binding –>ready!

I’m hoping to have time to shop for the batting tomorrow and get right to the quilting!

New quilt

Sigh.  I rather loathe the children’s duvets and duvet covers.  Whoever designed duvets for kids must not KNOW any kids.  The covers don’t stay on!  The duvets get bunched up!  The whole lot gets peed on and is a pain to launder and put back together!

So, with my recent quilt success under my belt, I decided to make the kids each a new quilt using their $#%* duvet covers and some scrap fabric. The Wee Girl’s is first up.  She chose several fabrics from my stash for her new quilt. After a tiny bit of measuring and math, I came up with a plan.

Today I cut the fabric into varying lengths that were 13″ wide, spread them out, and I had this:

It’s preliminary, but it’s big enough and I tend to like (and go with)my first editions. There will be sashing between the long rows that matches the backing (the %$&* duvet cover). It’ll get at least one sleep before any sewing takes place, so I may move things around…

The Wee Girl was distracted with watching Pingu and approved my design without really looking at it, so I feel like I pretty much have freedom with this one.

Quilt photo shoot

Today I was blessed with a long-napping kid and copious free time to photograph my quilt!

I had to stand on a table and hold my phone all the way up to the ceiling to get a full shot.  I’m pleased that the imperfections I could see so well while sewing it up are less noticeable now.


Here you can see a bit of stitch detail.  At the last minute, I researched whether or not I could do all the binding by machine, and the internets said yes, so I did.  I didn’t do it invisibly… I don’t think we’ll be scrutinizing this quilt up close for perfection, and I really wanted it to be sturdy so I can let my kids use it without me freaking out.

Le quilt.

Le quilt.

The back is something we can giggle about; how I oddly assumed that my large pieces were cut straight, and how I just went with it….  Or it was artistic license?  Or that I meant it to be a scrappy quilt and I didn’t need it to be perfect, so this funny result is A-ok with me??  Yes, the last one.


A little closer look at the details.


I took these photos on my bed, because it’s the only large space I had available that I wouldn’t have to vacuum, but this quilt really belongs on the sofa.  I imagine it will spend most of its life like this:


But if the kids have their way, it will be on the floor as a picnic blanket, hanging off the bunk beds for a tent, draped over their bodies as they pretend to be monsters…. and that’s fine, too.  As long as it gets used and enjoyed!

Quilt FO!

Today’s crafting started slowly… I cut the binding for my quilt, trimmed the quilt and batting, and got a second wind to sew it all together!!




And now I’m relaxing under a new quilt, watching Star Trek. It’s a 5-star day! I’ll take some daytime photos tomorrow.

Handspun, swatching, blocking, and Halloween!

Good news, my swatches for my NaKniSweMo cardigan look good.  The lace one is the one that really concerned me, but it looks to be the right size!  Yay!



I have four freshly blocked blanket squares, and this skein of handspun is almost out!

Blocking squares.

Blocking squares.

Luckily this one is ready to step in.

Wonderland Dyeworks

Wonderland Dyeworks

We attended some Halloween festivities today, and I whipped up a Totoro outfit so I wouldn’t be left out of the costume-y fun!  I already had the hat and soot sprites, I just made the tummy out of leftover white fleece and gray felt I had around.  Easy!

Impromptu Totoro costume!

Impromptu Totoro costume!

And I couldn’t BELIEVE that I found someone dressed up as Cat Bus!!!!!!!



The Wee Boy found Woody and Mr. Potato Head, and I thought his head would explode from joy.

The Wee Boy geeks out.

The Wee Boy geeks out.

I think I can officially declare Halloween as my favorite holiday!!!

2 FOs, 2 happy campers!

First FO: In case you missed it, late last week, my brother in law asked me to knit him a Jayne hat for Halloween.  Long story short, I was passed an almost completed one, and made short work of it.  Before I sent it to him, I added a letter.

You've got mail!

You’ve got mail!

If you’ve seen the Firefly episode in which the Jayne hat makes an appearance, you might know what the letter reads!  If not, here’s a peek.

Aw, a letter from Ma!

Aw, a letter from Ma (hubby thought brother and sister would be a nicer touch, so I went along with it).

I was super excited about my idea, but wanted him to receive it before I wrote a post about it, in case he’s reading this blog!  Well, today I received a text with this photo:

One happy Jayne hat recipient!

One happy Jayne hat recipient!

He’s super happy with the hat, and as you can see (if you’ve paid attention to the show), the t-shirt is also from Firefly.  And if you haven’t watched Firefly, get thee to Netflix and watch away!  You will not be disappointed!

By the way, if you like sci-fi, my brother-in-law has a really interesting sci-fi blog!  It’s communications written in the first person, describing the antagonist’s space-travelling adventures… Check it out!

Second FO:  I (pretty much) finished the German-style dress I’ve been sewing for the wee girl’s school’s Cultural Heritage celebration this weekend.  My ancestry is 50/50 Norwegian/German, while my husband’s is more varied, Norwegian/Irish/Italian/Portuguese, but as I’m the Maker around here, I went with German.  Getting a Norwegian Bunad together was out of the question, but a little dirndl-type dress, no problem!

Finish up those ties!

Finish up those ties, Mom!

We experimented with a Heidi-style braids, but her hair is still a bit short, and obviously I lack the right hair accessories to pull it off attractively.  Loopy braids might be the answer.

Back view.

Back view.

I’m so pleased that it’s roomy enough to last for years of Cultural Heritage celebrations!!!

Side view.

Side view.

I’d read that small girls’ dirndls can be made of non-traditional fabric, and can be more whimsical so I went with that feel.  Also, this was the best ribbon I found at JoAnn’s, so I chose the fabric to match the ribbon, and this was my favorite combo.



Oh, she is so pleased with it!  Sometimes it can be hard to get a photo shoot out of her, but she sped right outside to take pictures.  Ja!  Das ist gut!

This one pretty much says it all!

This one pretty much says it all!


Today ended up being quite a full day, considering that the only thing on the agenda was a soccer game at 9am.  The kids and I ended up also going to the Marine Mammal Center, Rodeo Beach, into Sausalito for ice cream, to Fort Baker to see harbor seals, and I prepped an entire quilt top!  Phew!

Cool mobile at the Marine Mammal Center

Cool mobile at the Marine Mammal Center

We only saw one sea lion in the Marine Mammal Center.  A bunch were being released back into the wild today!  It was our first visit here, which is crazy, considering how many times we’ve been to the beach just down the hill.

After the Marine Mammal Center, we spent a few hours at Rodeo Beach.

Typical beach outing; sweaters and running away from Mommy.

Typical beach outing; sweaters and running away from Mommy.

The kids made me a most touching birthday present, a “Monster” made out of clay, sticks, seaweed, crab shells….


Then a dog peed on it.  Such a pity I couldn’t take it home with me…..

At home, I broke into the birthday gift I bought for myself yesterday, a cutting mat and rotary cutter!  I’ve been anxious to make a quilt…

2 days early birthday present to myself!

2 days early birthday present to myself!

While the kids were watching a movie, I cut a ton of leftover fabric I’ve had in mind for a quilt to keep on the sofa.

Good progress!

Good progress!

And after they went to bed, I finished cutting what I’ve estimated is enough for a good-sized quilt top, +180 squares.

Just a few more than enough squares than I need!

Just a few more than enough squares than I need!

Oh, scraps!  What do you keep, what do you save?

How small is too small to save?  I deemed these trash.

How small is too small to save? I deemed these trash.

Do you have a size under which you toss the scraps, over which you save them? I tend to think if they’re too small for hair ties or (sewn together as) bias tape, I toss them.  It still feels sad, somehow.  ???

And these were deemed save-worthy, but I don't know...

And these were deemed save-worthy, but I don’t know…

Not a crafty day

Between riled-up kids, mostly solo parenting, an ice cream social, wacky bed times, and back-to-school preparations, I only managed a tiny bit of knitting today, with nothing really to show for it.

However, this is dry, and rather pretty!

And I have an idea brewing for fixing the Wee Girl’s loved-to-death blankie. I thought I’d back it with this silky fabric, quilt-style~ish. Maybe interfacing would help the thin flannel last a little longer? Any ideas?






It’s back to school tomorrow, and this mama can’t wait to have a little freedom! I have so many grand plans or how to spend my 2 hours 50 minutes 4 days a week! Most of them involve sewing, organizing, and exercising, with perhaps an occasional nap!