Monday, October 31, 2011

Halloween House

Check out this amazing Halloween House around the corner from where we live. It is the enthuses of the sweet and cutesy side of Halloween we all love. I am not a huge fan of the gore and scary parts of Halloween not to metion I am deathly afraid of Haunted Houses (don't believe me? read this post!) So a house full of such Halloweeny~goodness makes me want to drive by every day.
I image a house just like this lured Hansel and Gretel (not that I think this house is luring little children into its oven!) but it is so kitchy craft and has about 2000 little relief society knick knack... I am completely in love.

Happy Halloween ya'll. What are the kids dressing up as, you ask?  a nerd: suspenders and all, Dracula: I have the best cape evah and a sweet lil' pumpkin!

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Friday, October 28, 2011

Quilt Festival


Yay! It's the time of year again...Blogger's Quilt Festival. My quilt submission is on my bed right now with the binding {still!} half finished.

Originally I made an American Jane hexagon quilt and with the left over strips I created this quilt. It is colorful and vibrant and makes me grin. I worked so hard on my points and tried to make my little nine-patches not matchy matchy. Reds next to oranges, next to greens, next to teal, next to black, next to pink ~ you get the picture.

I can look at my quilt and see the fabrics and be reminded how long I've had that specific fabric or where I bought it or who gave it to me. I should have counted how many fabrics I used before I started. They repeat often in the quilt but I want to say at least 50.

I had never ordered fabric on-line before {gasp} but with 15 quilt stores in an hours drive I don't find myself searching my computer for that must-have-fabric but searching quilt stores. I learned at the Sewing Summit lots of quilters don't have that luxury, I mean, I have 2 within a 5 minute drive and 2 more in 10 minutes. But I bought 1 1/2  yards of my white sashing fabric and ran out. The white has teeny tiny white polka dots on it and is absolutely perfect for this Crazy for Dots Quilt. Lots of quilt stores had white on white polka dots but not as tiny as I needed. Luckily I found the fabric on-line and could finish the quilt.

Thanks Amy for hosting this great event. I love the quilting community, I love bloggers who quilt and share their creations everyday. Thanks for stopping by Quilt Festival participates!

To read my original post click here.
Also, I am hosting a local quilt retreat in November 18th and 19th, click here for more information. I would love to have you join in the fun!

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Thursday, October 27, 2011

Improv Piecing

***If your looking for info about my {Frenchknots} Quilt Retreat click on the top right "Retreat" button and get all the glorious info!***
At the Sewing Summit I got to take a class from Jess of Urban Patchwork and she taught about Improv Piecing. We were suppose to bring scraps of fabric to the retreat and when I stepped into the Babylock Sewing Machine Room, I felt sick, I had forgotten my scraps! Luckily, Jess had made little packs of fabric scraps for us to get started with. As soon as I looked at the scraps I knew I had tons of coordinating fabrics at home in my scrap box. Dang it!
Working and focusing for two straight hours on improv piecing was challenging and I felt quite out of my element. Regardless, it was really fun, I sat by Emily and Kris and we had a great time quilting and chatting together. I found out Kris and I had both attended Vanderbilt and that made me feel right at home with her. I love a southern accent.
By the time the class was over I had only finished about half of one block (too much laughing and chitty chatty is to blame!)  At home I finished up the blocks and with my scrap box I decided to make the blocks have a crazy quilting look, but I'm not sure if I went over board on the crazy though!  Once they were all finished and I trimmed up the sides and squared off the blocks they measured 15" by 10".

I put 2" sashing in between the 4 blocks in Kona "Snow".

Just a glance from the back. I have a few ideas for the rest of the quilt. I am excited to see where this leads.
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Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Maple Bars ~ Mid Week Munchies

I came across the most delicious looking doughnuts on Pinterest a few days ago. The recipe was from Our Best Bites, not their original recipe but Kate was making the doughnuts from this book. They looked divine and since I am such a sucker for maples bars...I just had to try.
These maples bars looked amazing, they fried to perfection and the glaze was spot on, they just didn't quite taste right. They were chewy (which I like very much) but too heavy and not alot of taste in the actual dough so the maple frosting was very overwhelming. I was disappointed. Now, I didn't add mace which the recipe calls for and I fried the dough in crisco and she suggested corn oil. Ummmm.

But I will say the frosting is "shut the front door" perfect. From now on this will be my go-to maple frosting. Here is it:

Maple Frosting

1 lb. powdered sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons light corn syrup
1/4 teaspoon table salt
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon maple extract
1/3 cup hot water (plus more if needed)

Fall is officially in my neck of the woods. Chilly and dark in the mornings and I need to get out and prep my garden for winter.

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Monday, October 24, 2011

Weekend Sewing

Lately, I've been feeling like I quilt (or anything for that matter) on borrowed time. My little one year old keeps me hopping most days and unless he is strapped into a car seat he is into everything. He has also perfected (at 1 yrs. old, mind you) the "flop" of discontent. When he doesn't get his way he "flops" a.k.a goes limp and screams. He's quite good at it.

That being said... I'm not sure how I finished sewing the borders on my 9-patch on point this weekend. Regardless, I am happy to have the borders sewn and moving on to piecing the back and machine quilting.

I wish I had done the triangles on the edge differently. They way I cut them didn't leave me quite enough of a 1/4" seam allowance for the borders. I am pretty mad at myself for that one. I hate my points cut off even in the slightest and some are worst then others.

Isn't he mischievous? What did you get done this weekend? Want to learn more about my Quilt Retreat? Click on "Retreat" at the top of the menu bar on the far right.
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Friday, October 21, 2011

Swap Bag Sewing Summit Giveaway

This Giveaway is now closed. Thanks for entering

I had a such an amazing time at the Sewing Summit {last weekend} and I don't want the fun to end!! So lets have a GIVEAWAY. With so many wonderful goodies from the Sewing Summit Swag Bag I just knew I had to share.

An assortment of Warm and Natural Batting Products (8 total)

5 spool pack of Aurifil Thread

Kona Cotton Solids Charm Pack (5")

Kitschy Corset Apron Pattern ~ from Brassy Apple

Ruthie's Romper Pattern ~ from Izzy and Ivy Designs

To WIN please do one or more of the following (please leave separate comments for each) by Sunday, October 30. U.S. residents only.

Comment on this Post
Become a NEW follower of Frenchknots
Tweet about this giveaway, saying something like: Yippee!! Win an assortment of fabric, thread, batting and patterns from @pamelacardwell and @Sewing Summit
3 chances to win! Make sure and leave your email address if you don't have a blogger profile. Good Luck.

ALSO: If you live in Utah and LOVE to QUILT. I am hosting a Quilt Retreat in November. Click here for details.

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Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Quilt Retreat

I am so thrilled to be announcing my {Frenchknots} Quilt Retreat. Whooohoo! I have been wanting to put something like this together for quite sometime and in the last month everything has fallen perfectly into place.

So.....If you need some time away before the rush of the Holidays to work and finish your loved ones handmade gifts or just want to Quilt, then join me and bring a friend to the Quilt Retreat this: November 18th and 19th. The retreat will be located at the beautiful Ivory Ridge Swim and Tennis Club in Lehi, Utah.

All you need to bring: Your Projects, Supplies and Machine!

Quilt Retreat Itinerary 

Friday, November 18th                                         Saturday, November 19th
  9:30am - 10:30am  Registration                       9:30am -  12:00pm Quilting and Projects
10:30am - 12:00pm Quilting and Projects        10:00am - 10:45 am Quilt Trunk Show
12:00pm - 12:45 pm Lunch                                12:00pm - 12:45pm Lunch
12:45pm - 5:00pm Quilting and Projects          12:45pm -  5:00pm Quilting and Projects
 5:00pm -   5:45pm Dinner                                  5:00pm -   5:45pm Dinner
 5:45pm -   8:00pm Quilting and Projects         5:45pm - 8:00pm Quilting and Projects
 6:00 pm -  8:00pm Hand Appliqué Class
by accomplished quilter, Jeanette Hartvigsen.
(sign up for $15.00)

We Provide: 22 hours of quilting time, socializing and YOU time, 4 delicious meals {lunch x2 and dinner x2}. Also provided: tables, chairs, ironing boards, cutting mats and cutters.
Total Cost for the 2 day Quilting Retreat is $75.00 The deadline to register is Sunday, November 13th. If you and a friend want to enroll together, you'll each receive a $10.00 discount. (Both friends will need to email me and I will reply with your coupon codes.)

We only have 30 spots, so register early. Bring a friend and make some new ones! If you can't join us both days, but don't want to miss out, you can sign up for either Friday or Saturday for only $35.00.

So you WANT to attend? Can't hardly wait? Sign up here to secure your spot!

Once I receive your registration email from Eventbrite. I will email you a detailed Itinerary of the Quilting Retreat and more!

Thanks and I can't wait to see you in one short month.

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Thursday, October 13, 2011

Sewing Summit Recap ~ deux

I didn't realize until I got to the Sewing Summit how much I needed it. The weekend away, the socializing, the pampering, the fabric, the classes and non-stop womanly arts. I was thrilled at the thought of a weekend where I could focus on me and what I love to do: Create and Quilt. But once I got there and felt the inspiration of the teachers and other attendees I was saying a silent prayer of thanks that I had decided to attend.

I wanted to share a little more about the Sewing Summit Classes. My previous post was many just pictures.

The Classes: Here is a recap of each inspiring class.

Alison {Cluck, Cluck, Sew} Free Motion Quilting.

I have been wanting to learn how to free motion quilt {um, for a while} but was scared to take the leap. I kept making excuses and finding ways around the idea. Because of my fears, I knew I had to take Alison's class and it was worth the price of the ticket alone! I could relate to her: she was my age, has small children and fearless with her machine quilting. She gave awesome tips and suggestions. She made free motion not "scary".

Jessica {Urban Patchwork} Improv Piecing

Jessica's class on improve piecing opened my eyes to modern quilting. I hardly experiment with modern quilting so I loved having an entire class to focus on scraps, uneven points and lines and thinking outside the box. Her quilts up close are beautiful and constructed with so many little details. I could have stared all day.

Vanessa {V and Co.} Photography

I really, really, really need a new camera. Mine has gone down the Truckee River, dropped by my 6 year old on multiple occasions and my one year old loves to man handle it as well. Ouch! I learned so many good tips to take better pics I just need a DSLR and then I will magically be the best photographer evah!

Dana {Red Barn Co.} Blogging and Social Media

Dana's class was a breath of fresh air in blogland. With so much emphasis put on followers, subscribers, comments and the like, I loved hearing her talk about building friendships and a on-line community.

Jeni {In Color Order} Fabric Selection

Jeni is too cute and so was her class. We got Kona cards from Robert Kauffman for attending and the squeals and applause was overwhelming. She talked about going beyond fabric lines and using color in new complementary ways. (pic: Jeni's flicker)

Melissa {I Still Love You} Refashioning

Melissa's class on refashioning made me want to drive to her house and hand over all my old, ill-fitting clothes for her to revamp. But alas, I must do it myself. She is sooo good at taking something hideous and making it modern and chic. I already have a pile of clothes I plan to hem, take in 2" and refashion.

If you are really considering attending next year { Amy and Erin are already planning 2012} YOU shouldn't even give it a second thought. It was fantastic.

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Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Sewing Summit Recap

This weekend was a whirlwind! I am exhausted from all the FUN! No really, I am. Quilting into the wee hours, talking and chatting with new friends, 6 fantastic classes, and of course the yummy food. I feel so lucky to have been able to attend the Sewing Summit. (Thank You, NearSea Naturals!) 

I want to give a proper recap of the weekend and share what I learned, but here are a few pictures, just as a tease. I took them on my phone, because lets face it, my camera is just embarrassing, especially when everyone else has a DSLR. I need a new camera, pronto!
Everyone Quilting in the Baby Lock Sewing Room.

 Alison at Cluck Cluck Sew demonstrating free motion quilting. Can't wait to practice more at home. They also had a little giveaway {queen size warm and natural batting} which I won by guessing Alison's due date: March 19th! Not to shabby.
Several of the attendees got together and made this quilt for the Founders Amy and Erin. It was beautiful and heartfelt.
Women were constantly at work on projects. I loved the portable design boards they had for the quilters to use. So handy. I need one of these at home.
I met a new quilting friend. Emily, she creates patterns at Crazy Old Ladies and designs fabric for Michael Miller. She is one amazing quilter.

More Recapping Soon.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Sewing Summit Attendee

The Sewing Summit

I am leaving shortly for the Sewing Summit. {Squeal} I feel like this is finally a blogging conference for ME. Sewing, Fabric, Desgin and Socializing. I am meeting up with some ladies {only a few of them I know} to do some thrifting in SLC. Fingers crossed I find some great things. I will be back next week with a full report on classes, blogger, fabric and much more!!

If you want to follow all the buzz on twitter check out hashtag #sewingsummit. Especially me and what I'll be tweeting @pamelacardwell.

Packed and Ready to Go.

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Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Pumpkin Seed Granola ~ Mid Week Munchies

When I visit my sister in So. California I like to visit a little food store in her neighborhood called Sprouts. They have a great bulk food section and my sister got me hooked on their pumpkin seed granola. I always load up and bring lots home, but inevitably it always runs out. I can't find a similar granola anywhere in Utah. So with her help we've come up with the next best thing. I adapted my granola from this recipe and tweaked it just a little.

This granola is delicious and what's taste better in Fall than pumpkin!

Pumpkin Seed Granola:

Dry Ingredients:

8 cups rolled oats
1 1/2 cups wheat germ
1 1/2 cups oat bran
1 cup sunflower seeds
1 cup flax seed
1 cup pumpkin seeds (raw)
1 cup finely chopped almonds
1 cup finely chopped pecans
1 cup finely chopped walnuts

Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl. I have been know to half the recipe because it makes so much!


1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup maple syrup
3/4 cup honey
1 cup vegetable oil
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
**Add 1/4 cup of karo syrup if you want bigger clusters of granola and a bit more crunch.

Over medium heat in a saucepan combine the syrup ingredients. Allow it to come to a boil and remove from heat. Pour over dry ingredients and stir til granola is covered.

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Bake granola in two large cookie sheets lined with parchment or tin foil for 15-20 minutes. Cool and enjoy. Store for up to a week in an airtight container.
Even my little one yr. old loves this granola. Can't you tell?

I am participating:


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Monday, October 3, 2011

Sewing Summit ~ I'm Going!

The Sewing Summit

Yippee! This weekend in SLC Amy and Erin are hosting a fantastic Sewing and Blogging Conference. I originally learned about the conference back in March and have been wanting to attend. The teachers and classes will be phenomenal and I can't wait to meet IRL some amazing sewists/quilters.

Part of the reason I am attending is I will be a Brand Ambassador for a lovely Mother/ Daughter business from North Carolina: American Grown/NearSea Naturals .

They are an organic based company and specialize in organic knits and woven fabrics as well as organic notions, I especially fell in love with their wool battling. For a long time I have wanted to try my hand at organic quilting materials and American Grown is just the company to get me started. Go check them out!
Speaking of the conference...I am just a little nervous to attend. This is my first major blogging conference and luckily, I have a few friends who are attending which will make it easier. I just don't know quite what to expect being my first time! If your attending please let me know in the comments or an email. I want to meet you!

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Sunday, October 2, 2011

Guest Posting at Someday Crafts

I am thrilled to be guest posting over at Someday Crafts.  Michelle is enjoying some R & R with her family and she is having me {squeal} give a tutorial on how to make this fantastic Halloween Paint Can.
Someday crafts is a great resource for DYI crafts. She has linky parties on Wednesday and a giveaway directory on Thursday. I visit regularly and you should too! Click right over and check out how easy and dirt cheap this Halloween craft is!!  

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