My fabric-lusting eyes (bark) are so much bigger than my actual-sewing bite.

I am completely obsessing over this lovely elephant skyline knit fabric (also seen here). So I said to myself "OK I can buy it once I've made four garments!"

Then I looked in my mostly apparel fabric closet.

The mostly apparel fabric closet.

HAHAHAHAHA WHO AM I KIDDING I CAN NEVER BUY FABRIC AGAIN. (And this isn't even a drop in the bucket of the quilting weight fabric...)

So I started sorting.

Reasons I can't buy more apparel fabric

There are bottom-weight fabrics

Reasons I can't buy more apparel fabric

knit fabrics

Reasons I can't buy more apparel fabric

Reasons I can't buy more apparel fabric

dress weight fabrics (voiles, seersuckers, poplins, etc)

Reasons I can't buy more apparel fabric

Reasons I can't buy more apparel fabric

Good. Grief.

And when was the last time I sewed a piece of clothing? August 2013. So yeah I'm using up my stash SO FAST that I will likely die before I've even cut into HALF of it.

Well. At least it's reorganized.

That's better.

So there's that.

posted by Duff on July 23, 2014 | Comments (2)

Sunset in Saugatuck.

If you follow me on Instagram, you'll know I went on a PROPER SUMMER VACATION this year, a lovely almost-week in Saugatuck, Michigan.

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It was a beautifully summery place, full of cottages and quirkiness. We stayed in a lovely little (LITTLE) place called The Nutshell, the perfect size for two humans and one canine who spent most of their time in beaches and bars. ;)

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I read a lot, rewatched some movies, listened to tunes, and most importantly RELAXED.

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You know, when I moved to Chicago, an NYC friend worried that I'd be land-locked here. I don't think people who haven't been to the Midwest truly understand the size of the great lakes. This lake pictured here? It reaches all the way from Saugatuck, where this photos was taken, over to my apartment in Chicago!

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I like to call it the Midwest Ocean. It's got everything you expect from an ocean--tides, waves, seaweed, nibbly fish, etc.--except SALT. And maybe jellyfish, I'm not sure about that one.

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If you enjoyed my week on Instagram, you might enjoy it on print? I only put it public there b/c I needed to give it to a friend--the version I printed for myself has a lot more pictures of ME up close & personal heh but the one publicly on Blurb is mostly shots of the charming surroundings with just a few of us.

Hope you're finding some time to relax this summer yourself!

Unfortunately relaxing has gone out the window since I got home and began the Major Apartment Purge of 2014 (random capitalization FTW and to drive my online friends nuts hahahahaha).

That's all for now. Peace out.

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posted by Duff on July 19, 2014 | Comments (1)

Sewing / Quilting Ladies:

People who like sewing stuffed animals:
Does anyone out there want the supplies to make sock monkeys (and/or other sock animals) ? I have a bunch of both the original sock monkey socks as well as some snowboarding socks AND instruction books to send you if you'd like.

People who quilt:
Anyone want a big bag of scraps? All quilting cottons, 100% cotton, nothing smaller than say 5" square unless it's a 2" strip.

Let me know, this stuff will all just go to goodwill if you don't want it. Or the sock monkey stuff will go to goodwill and some of the scraps will just get thrown away.

posted by Duff on July 18, 2014 | Comments (1)

Yo, quilters and knitters.

I listed a bunch of quilting (and a few knitting) books on Amazon if you're interested. Most are old-fashioned looking but obviously you can make old patterns with modern fabric and it will have a very different look.

I'm trying to cut down on my shall we say MASSIVE RIDICULOUS personal possessions this summer so I'm putting books I have never done anything but flip through up for sale (while still keeping a few, heh) and if they don't sell in a couple weeks, they'll find themselves at good will.

I will probably add a few more as I continue to dig through that bookshelf.

posted by Duff on July 04, 2014 | Comments (0)

Oh, Chicago. A beautiful city with delicious food hidden away all over the place.

A Visit to the Calumet Fishery 3

I'd never been to the Calumet Fishery before and it was quite delicious!!

A Visit to the Calumet Fishery 1A Visit to the Calumet Fishery 2

A Visit to the Calumet Fishery 6

A Visit to the Calumet Fishery 4A Visit to the Calumet Fishery 5

Tomorrow I get to go pack up my classroom to move downstairs. Tuesday we finalize stuff for the summer and then vacation begins. CanNOT wait!!!

posted by Duff on June 15, 2014 | Comments (2)

Y'all know I love winter, but this spring has been a long long long time coming.

Springety Sprungety 1

Springety Sprungety 2

Less than a month of school left. Hoping I can hold on to my sanity that long!!!

posted by Duff on May 24, 2014 | Comments (2)

I went to North Carolina for the weekend and when I came back it was winter again.

These pictures, however, were taken in 2010. Heh.

A slice of Winter Prairie

Winter weeds

Garfield Park

So bittersweet to find Lauren in these negatives. Sniff. After I was just texting her yesterday asking when I would be able to see her and Peto!!

Laughing Lauren

posted by Duff on April 16, 2014 | Comments (1)

Winter just keeps on keeping on.

Today 3

Today 4

Today 5

posted by Duff on February 02, 2014 | Comments (4)

More pretty winter for ya.

The steam rolling off Lake Michigan was epic.

Hot lake on a cold day.

Yesterday, lakeside.

I love the frozen winter harbor.

I love the frozen winter harbor.

A half formed stone monument? A square snowman?

Ah, my favorite subject, lonely trees.

The steam rolling off the lake.

I put up a vid of the lake if you're interested.

Laters, peeps.

posted by Duff on January 07, 2014 | Comments (2)

Winter, yer so pretty.

New Years Eve.

I love how the branches up top drop out and it's like the tree is sending a lasso out into the sky.

posted by Duff on January 05, 2014 | Comments (2)

Year of making...almost nothing.

Yup, I only finished 8 things in 2013. (With a few random quilt blocks thrown in here and there, not represented here since they didn't actually amount to a THING.)

Finished in 2013.

One quilt which was done in JANUARY so basically a year ago, two cowls, one skirt, one T shirt of questionable fit, and three dresses, one of questionable fit. Truly sad.

1. NewBee Green quilt is done!!!, 2. Second finish for 2013! Crappy pictures of another finished cowl, 3. Chunktastic Cowl #4, 4. New skirt Thursday., 5. Butterfly Staple Dress, 6. Washi dress finished FINALLY., 7. Fairly wearable Scout Muslin #2 (knit version), 8. Staple dress #2

SIGH. You know, when you finish a LOT of stuff people always ask you where you find the time. Well, you just do. It's here and there and everywhere and honestly yes I had a busy year and yes I had a lot of stress and I taught summer school so I basically had 10 days off total all summer long but STILL... There were plenty of times when I was doing nothing, for hours. Plenty of times I could have been doing stuff.

Oh well. I guess I was just too tired. Hoping for better in 2014.

I started a scarfy thing for a friend:

Trillian begins.

I made one tiny sweater for Truly's stuffed rabbit and I have another underway:

Tiny Rabbit Sweater!

And I really really REALLY need to get back to work on this since it's from a swap that ended probably over a year ago!! I SUCK.

5.5 episodes of Veronica Mars = 9 paper pieced hearts.Two episodes of Southland, four letters, or 1 June.

And I'm hoping to make it through a few quilts, maybe these to start?

1) Herd of Hedgehogs
a 9-patch that needs a backing and to be quilted obviously
Pinking it up.

2) Interlocked
all cut but needs to be sewn together, backed, quilted
I know you all picked the all-solid red option...

3) Swoon
1 block made, 8 more blocks to go...
Swoon #1: super drama mama (summer 38)

We'll see. I pretty much never end up working on the thing I intend to be working on, so...

posted by Duff on January 04, 2014 | Comments (1)

Peace Out, 2013.

This was really a quote about Christmas, but it actually applies to all of life.

The choice is ours to make, how we live into the possibilities of Christmas.

Here's to better choices in 2014. Bring it on, possibility.

hblad 62: 'Blad Bokeh.

posted by Duff on December 31, 2013 | Comments (4)

RIP Bella Schmella Schmoo.

My friend Carrie's dog Bella died yesterday and I'm oh so so so very sad about this, I couldn't even express to you how much. I loved her very dearly.

Spotlight on Bella

Bella ponders her kingdom.

Bella streeeeeeetch.

Bella scared.

Bella Schmella Schmoo

She was super camera shy as you may have been able to tell but I'm so glad I took her picture anyway.

33/52 me & Bella, cuddlin' on the couch

I'll miss you sweet sweet girl.

posted by Duff on January 26, 2012 | Comments (7)