Wednesday, April 29, 2015

So This is Happening...

Some of you may know that I am a major fan of all things yoga. 

When we were going through some of the hardest moments of our lives this last year, yoga got me through it. It helped me physically, emotionally and mentally. It gave me time to focus on myself and a space to be honest about how I was feeling. It also gave me something to focus on and look forward to every day. It also allowed me to set goals for myself and celebrate small achievements. 

It has become such a large part of my life that I now want to help others see the benefit of spending some time on the mat. I am off to become a yoga teacher.... in Costa Rica! After lots of research and some long discussions I have booked my flights and my course in Cahuita at the Goddess Garden Eco resort. . I leave on July 31 and will return on August 16 which means I will be away from Dave and the kids for 17 days! I can look forward to 14 hour days and some great vegetarian food and when I come home I will be fully certified to teach yoga anywhere in the world.

I will admit that I am a little bit nervous about everything. I have never been away from Dave and the kids this long and I am nervous about not being able to keep up with everything. I have dedicated myself to practicing yoga at least 5 times a week to build up strength and running 3 times a week. I have some weight to lose and some things to learn so I will also be taking a few workshops leading up to my trip including an inversion workshop on May 23 (bring on the handstands!). 

I will be learning from Marianne Wells and her team. She is a world renowned teacher and seems really incredible. You have read more about her and her work HERE. You can also take a look at where I will be staying HERE.

Wish me luck and I expect to see all of you Edmontonians at my first class in the city!

The Main Yoga Studio at the Goddess Garden

Mrs. E

Monday, April 20, 2015

Brass & Baubles ~ A Doe Quilt

Oh sweet sweet Doe fabric... how I love thee. 

I have a serious fabric problem. I buy too much of it, I can't stop reorganizing it, I have shelves full of it and I keep every single scrap... which allows me to create beautiful quilts like this. This quilt was made over one weekend using the scraps from my Amy Butler Weekender bag and solid white. I basted it quickly and backed it in my favorite Ikea print. Some straight line quilting in a mint green Glide thread brought the entire thing to life and I bound it in a beautiful deep blue solid. 

It may be one o my simpler quilts, but it is also one of my favorites. If you follow me on Instagram you got to see this as a work in progress. I have posted a few of those photos here as well. 

Finished Quilt Top



Mrs. E

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Easter Bunny Suspicion

We almost got caught being the Easter bunny by our four year old this year. 

Apparently Sydney saw me putting up decorations for the Easter egg hunt. In the morning we had told her that the Easter bunny decorated the house and she tried to call us on it. "No Mama.... I saw you standing on a chair to put them up last night." Que parent panic. She must have seen my reflection in the huge window we have on the stairs! Dave was fast thinking and managed to convince her that it was just a dream and that the Easter bunny had in fact, decorated the house. 

Phew! With that bullet dodged we were able to enjoy the mayhem that is Easter morning. This is the first time that Henry really knew what was going on and both kids just fed off of each other's excitement. Henry kept yelling "Hide! Eggs! Find!" while he frantically ran around the house looking for treats. They had an amazing time and the stickers and books that they got in their baskets kept them entertained all morning which meant one thing... quiet time for me!

Mrs. E

Monday, April 13, 2015

Brass & Baubles ~ Weekender Bag

Does anyone else have a sewing bucket list? ... or is that just me....

The Amy Butler Weekender Bag has been on my sewing bucket list FOREVER. It is one of those projects that has become sort of an urban legend among quilters and bloggers everywhere. It is known for being very difficult to sew because of all of the thick layers of fabric and interfacing you need to work through at the same time. Well... I finished mine. 

I had to order the pattern online because it is one of Amy's older projects and can be really difficult to find. I used fabric from Carolyn Friedlander's Doe fabric line and a coordinating solid to put it together. I also used the quilt-as-you-go method instead of using layers of Peltex as directed by Amy. Here are the things I learned while making this bag:

~ Quilting your fabric onto a layer of mid weight interfacing and batting gives you more than enough stability and structure to avoid having to buy and use expensive Peltex

~ Make the straps longer and wider than the pattern calls for. Mine are at least 9 inches longer and and 2 inches wide.

~ Make extra pockets in the lining of your bag. I added one large pocket and two smaller ones. Now that I have been using the bag or a while I would probably add a full divider as well. 

~ Don't use pins. The layers of fabric are too thick for pins so I ended up using my clover clips to hold everything together as I stitched. Small binder clips would also work well.

~ Use a zipper foot or piping foot to get close enough to your piping. My Pfaff also allowed me to use the built in walking foot at the same time..... suuuuper helpful. 

~ Use a denim or leather needle and sew SLOW. 

~ I used a solid for the bottom third of my main panels. I knew that it would be hidden by the pockets and didn't want to waste any of my prints.

~ I made the piping using a fusible tape instead of stitching it. This gave me more leniency with my stitch line when putting the bag together. 

~ Add additional stitching to your handles. I stitched all the way down to the bottom o the handles and added X strengthening stitches. I also used my doubled back straight stitch for this portion. 

Hopefully some of these tips will help you out if you decide to make your own. Here are some photos of the process:

My Mini Block

Pocket Progress

Finished Pocket

Quilting Detail

Side Panel

Adding the Piping

Fully Completed Side Panel

Additional Stitching on Handles for Stability

Sewing on the First Side Panel

Using Clover clips to hold the bag together as I sew


Mrs. E