Monday, April 12, 2010

I've started all over again. . .

. . . over here at Dia's Days!

Hope to see you there!


Tuesday, August 11, 2009

bread, a bag, and buh bye

This may very well be the last post at Creativa. I'm over this space and am ready for an end or maybe even ready for a fresh start. Who knows!? Before I "leave", though, I have a couple of things to share. . .

I've heard about this bread book for over a year and have owned the book for over 6 months but I just decided to use it last week. Oh, wow, is it easy! The first dough I made was the all-purpose boule. From that, the first recipe I baked was the sticky buns and, let me tell you, oh, are they yummy! I've made them twice now and will very likely make sticky buns once a week! (Twice a week is probably not a good idea.) I have also baked the artisan bread from the boule recipe and have incorporated wheat flour into the dough recipe. It is so tasty, especially when it sits enough days to develop a sourdough taste. YUM, again! We don't usually eat bread with our meals so this may become a problem for our daily carb intake, but I'm sure we'll figure out a good solution or just do a little more exercising! Next recipe in the baking queue, sunny-side up apricot pastry!
homemade bread

I have had one handbag on my mind for a couple of months, the "Everything Tote" found in Weekend Sewing by Heather Ross. It's a huge bag designed to carry goods from your shopping fun but I chose to make the bag to use as my daily handbag. I'm not a fan of big bags and prefer using a small purse or wristlet but would like to be able to carry my water bottle, my new day planner and my camera all together. This bag will work just fine, even if it is bigger than what I like to carry.

Everything Tote

I worked on this bag over the weekend after purchasing Laura Gunn's Hanging Cages fabric (purchased at Fancy Tiger, of course!). The design on this fabric is so pretty and I figured I would enjoy it more if I used it for a handbag instead of a garment. I used a Kona cotton for the lining (I don't know the color but I would call it "ice blue") and Amy Butler "Happy Dots" in ice for the inside pocket and the lining of the straps.

Everything Tote pockets in Everything Tote
zipper in Everything Tote

The bag is pretty simple to sew and I like how the bias trim gives the appearance of piping sticking out from underneath the seam if you just happen to press it so. I reduced the size by 2" on all sides and added a couple of loops for keys and glasses and a zippered pocket on the exterior. I have decided it needs a water bottle holder of some sort. I was planning on sewing on a loop made from elastic to the inside side seam but, with possible condensation issues, I think I'll sew a tube that has elastic on the top and bottom ends. It will have to be sewn through the lining and exterior at this point.

I like my new handbag and I think it will help to keep me better organized.

I started this blog over 4 years ago. Over this time I have had highs and lows with blogging and in life. I've never really been a committed blogger and really only started this blog to keep a record of the things I make (mainly things I sew), recipes I cook and flowers/plants I grow in my garden. In 4 years I've certainly been inspired by many craft blogs and have spent much more time reading those than writing for this one. I appreciate the few who have visited and have left comments and am glad to also have made some new friends along the way. While I'm happy I started and kept this creative journal, I think it has reached its end. Right now, my life is going through a few transitions and I feel ready for a fresh start--2 of my children will be in school full-time, there are big changes with my husband's job, and the biggest transition is new life, I'm pregnant! A new blog, with a new name, and a new focus seems to be calling my name. I don't know when (or if) this will happen, but I hope it will be sooner rather than later. For now, I'll keep reading those amazing craft blogs and I'll be thinking about where I'm headed with blogging. Hope to see ya soon!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

What does your garden grow?

This year my garden includes much more than flowers and my usual salsa garden. It includes a nice variety of vegetables too!

2 great iPhotos

Last year we sowed seeds for radishes, carrots, peas, snap beans, and onions but our lack of planning and veggie-growing knowledge was evident in our harvest. I don't have any photos to document the end result but it wasn't pretty. Those veggies were grown in my "cut flower" garden but space was limited and we ended up with many weeds and volunteer tomato and tomatillo plants all throughout the garden--thanks to our compost. It was "zero fun" weeding so I gave up on that garden after a few attempts. That garden turned into a jungle of weeds and over grown plants and it was time for a new beginning. (BTW, I now avoid putting any tomatoes/tomatillos in the compost bin and I am also selective about which weeds make it in there. We also watered and turned it often during the winter months.)

I am a big fan of "Lasagna Gardening" so in early fall 2008, after I cleaned up the jungle mess and transplanted the perennial flower plants, I covered the garden area with cardboard to smother the weeds, grass, seeds and prepare the ground for a blank slate for 2009.

This is what we have now and I couldn't be happier!132:365/2009

My husband worked very hard to build these two beds and he did a beautiful job! I have never worked with raised garden beds before and so I had a few questions about gardening this way. I was told time after time to look into "Square Foot Gardening". Wow, it's an amazing concept! I'm looking forward to sweet success this year with an abundant harvest.

Here's our list of plants:
Black from Tula Tomatoes
Cherokee Purple Tomato
German Pink Tomato
Gold Medal Tomato
Dragon's Tongue Bean
Golden Zucchini
Verte et Blanc Squash
Golden Zucchini
Double Yield Cucumber
Chioggia Beet
Dragon Carrot
Lettuce Mixture
Jalapeño, Serrano, and Anaheim Chile Peppers
Red Bell Pepper
Watermelon Radish
Green Onion
Green Bell Pepper
Purple Queen Bush Bean
Bush Snap Bean
Snow Peas
Sugar Bon Peas
Sweet Treat Carrot
Italian Parsley
Lemon Balm

I also included a few flower plants for color and protection too! I hope to transplant some of these to my main flower garden soon.
4 varieties of Zinnia

Monday, May 25, 2009

two months

Last time I posted here I was working on sewing more clothes for myself. That hasn't gone so well but I have done a little sewing. . .

-a hoodie, I altered the Summer Blouse pattern from "Weekend Sewing"
94:365/2009 "Summer Blouse" Hoodie

-I started a quilt using the great Mod Sampler Quilt-Along tutorial
(My progress can be found here.)

-Easter dresses for my girls
Juju's Easter Dress 101:365/2009

-a skirt for Maria's Kindergarten Continuation
141:365/2009 back of skirt

-a headband for the Bolder Boulder
Bolder Boulder Headband

With many commitments behind me now, I hope to get more sewing time in the next few months!

Thursday, March 26, 2009


In January I challenged myself to change my wardrobe by sewing my own clothes! I thought it would be simple to work on one garment a week but soon realized I was being a little too ambitious. I also started a blog to journal all about the completed pieces and the random stuff that I learn as each piece is being constructed.

This is the 13th week of 2009 and so far, I've only made three pieces: a tunic, a "trial" summer blouse, and a different summer blouse. The blog is pretty sad at this moment so I won't even give you a link until I can actually get more posted.

#1-This is the tunic
#3 tunic

#2-The summer blouse is a pattern from the book "downtownDIY sewing". It's a very cute design but I won't post a photo because mine didn't turn out so cute. . . As this was my first attempt at sewing this blouse, I made a trial blouse from a cheap cotton instead of muslin just so that I could wear it when I completed it. (Yes, I'm a bit confident in my skills. HA!) Well, sadly, I didn't have enough fabric for the whole blouse but I didn't figure that out until I had already cut out the main pieces. Needless to say, it's ugly but, hey, now I know how to construct it in the right size for me! Maybe next time I'll go with muslin. Um, nah--see my next garmet description!

#3-The third piece I've made is another summer blouse except this one is from the latest book to hit the sewing world, "Weekend Sewing" by Heather Ross. I first read about the book on this post at this great blog! It's a quick sew and it's very comfortable! I can see myself making a few more with some variations--sleeveless, 3/4 length sleeves, a dress, a different neckline and a hoodie!!! The variations will certainly help me catch up to my goal of one garment per week! (If I can finish the year with 52 pieces, I'll be happy even if they weren't all made "one per week".)
summer blouse
This blouse was made using a thrifted sheet. Probably cheaper than muslin and wearable too!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Taxi Tote

I made the Taxi Tote bag from the book "Seams To Me" by Anna Maria Horner.


It's a simple bag to construct but because I was making it late at night it took me longer than I had anticipated due to some really dumb mistakes! Nobody should sew late at night or when they are tired! I didn't have trouble with the bias tape but spent a lot of time taking out stitches after I stitched the whole exterior shut!!! I'm so used to making lined totes and, even with nice illustrations on the pattern instructions, I couldn't clearly understand the way the lining was going to fit inside the exterior fabric because there is no turning involved--it was midnight!

I used fabric I had on hand--the flower fabric is from a fabric store in Puebla, Mexico; the lining is a bright pink cotton solid; the bias tape is a pink cotton with a red flower print--left over fabric from the "In Stitches" loung pants.

Now, I just have to get used to carrying a purse over my shoulder since I've been staying away from carrying a diaper bag and use a wristlet to carry the basics.



Juju turned five earlier this month so I made her another birthday tee. For this one, I appliquéd 5 circles onto a strip of fabric and added some crazy stitching to the strip to give it some texture. Then, I zigzag stitched the strip onto the front of a t-shirt (I backed it with some flannel). It was simple and cute and I liked it but it was all over too quickly so I decided to add 5 more circles to the back. She loved it!

(I know you can only see 4 circles, but the fifth circle is off to the right.)

Saturday, March 07, 2009



I'm very excited to participate in the Mod Sampler Quilt-Along. Elizabeth, the host, will certainly be teaching us lots of great skills for quilting. Check out her amazing work on her blog.

I purchased fabric today at Fancy Tiger and spent a long time trying to figure out my color choices. I started off thinking I would work with a green and orange palette but then the Anna Maria Horner fabric just had to be included!!! I ended up with blue, yellow and orange as my color palette and I am very pleased with this combo. I'm ready to get cutting AND sewing!