pillow crafting

Ta da...I bought this fabric about a year ago with the intent of making toss pillows for our bed...this was back when we had a simple white duvet. Our bedroom is painted a dark greenishbluish gray called "Sheen River" and I wanted to add some graphic color to the space. Since then I came to the reality that white duvets in house that has kids & cats is not such a great idea...our bedroom serves as the passage way to the backyard so extra grime accumulates, especially in the summer when the doors stay open! Nonetheless I found this "cheap" IKEA duvet cover...it is holding court until I find the perfect duvet cover...perhaps I should make one...perhaps that it slightly ambitious for my current sewing skills. Hmmm. Something to ponder. Back to the pillows...I followed the "Bend the Rules" semi-simple pillow pattern making an envelope style pillow cover. I am pleased. To step up the fanciful and to deviate from the pattern I decided to try my hand at free hand (?) machine embroidery. Take a closer look...

...complete with a couple appliqued birds to create a textured look. I love these Japanese fabrics...word to the wise...if you find fabric you love always buy at least 1 yard so you have options in your sewing future. Before I started sewing last year I attended a fabric/surface design school in which I accumulated many 1/4yard pieces of fabric for inspiration and color palettes...now I want to use these scraps but am limited. I give you permission to go ahead a splurge. Here is a great online fabric resource for fabric and tutorials. Sew Mama Sew.

I have always wanted to make homemade baked beans...I love baked beans and I love to cook. However there is commitment factor as the beans need to be soaked over night...I planned ahead and baked the beans for a good 6 hours yesterday...the flavour was wonderful (maple-glazed beans) but I did not get the "sauce". The beans are not as moist as they should be. I think perhaps if I made it in a crock pot it would be better or perhaps there was an error in the recipe...perhaps to cover the beans. Any thoughts? I want to try again. I am not going to waste these babies...into a pot of chili they will go! If you have a great baked bean recipe please let me know...Lila????

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