Thursday, October 8, 2009

A kitchen facelift, a parcel, and a dream quilt for Blossom...

That's the view from my kitchen steps at's beautiful, but it also reminds me that it's been a hot day and the afternoon sun hits the kitchen hard, making cooking a true act of love for me.

This scene also prompted me to put aside the designing and the gifts for a few days and do what I've planned to do since we moved in three months ago - decorate the old house and make it a home! So you've asked about an October Challenge - well, this is mine! To make those things for the house that never seem to get done. Do you want to join me in this?? Wouldn't it be *wonderful* to look around your home on the last day of October and see the work of your hands beautifully evident in a special touch here and there?

Shall I start and share what I've done so far?

These are my new kitchen curtains. I ran them up yesterday from that funky retro "Home Ec" fabric of Michael Miller's that I bought last month.

The pieces weren't long enough for my plan so I added some red cotton gingham to the top, with hanging loops of the same, then I dug out this beautiful and soft vintage cotton lace (rescued from an old petticoat I found in an op-shop a number of years ago and kept for such a time as this) and added it to the bottom. Lastly I added the red ric-rac trim because nothing says vintage to me like red ric-rac.

After I'd hung the curtains I turned to my trusty breadmaker and promised he'd be given some finery too! It only took me an hour to make the breadmaker cover as I have a lot of completed embroidery blocks stored in a special bag just waiting for the odd project or gift, so I only needed to make the cover itself. I used some yummy Sandi Henderson fabric (Farmers Market range) for the front and backing, some cotton batting for the middle, and then quilted it in my 'signature' wavy lines. ;-)

I added the leftover red gingham to the bottom, the stitched on the binding and some side straps which I double-buttoned down. Lastly, I fused the embroidered stitchery to the front before stitching more of that lovely red ric-rac around it.
The kitchen has certainly brightened up, and I'm only half done with it. More coming later in the week...

I showed some Robert Gordon pottery a few weeks back which I purchased at *that shop*, the one Blossom and I frequent on a regular basis.
One of my blogger readers emailed to say she lived just near the Robery Gordon factory and would I like her to purchase something on my behalf. I checked their catalogue and discovered this exquisite pudding bowl... dear Brianna ordered it for me, two weeks later it arrived in stock, I paid, and she posted. I was thrilled to bits because I like to buy one new Christmas heirloom piece each year to hand down to Blossom one day - and this pudding bowl was IT for this year. :-)

However, Brianna was a naughty girl, and whilst perusing the Robert Gordon shop she thought she'd fill out that box before she posted it off with my pudding bowl!
Look what else found it's way to me....

...the sweetest jelly mould in *my* colour, a divine cake server in Robert Gordon's "Liberty" design, a package of 72 sweetheart paper doilies (that's 72 afternoon tea cakes!!), and a 4 person set of the plastic cutlery - but it's like a copy of the Queen's silver service!
And then...something to indulge in. A sachet of Chocolate Mudcake Latte. We cannot buy this in town so I am in heaven right now as I sip it whilst writing this post.
Blossom has tucked the cake server away in her Glory Box to be used on her wedding day. How gorgeous is that!
Brianna, {{{thank you!!}}}

Speaking of Blossom - she wants a wedding quilt for the big day, whenever that comes...she has been praying for her one true love since she was 6, so I think God has gotten the idea by now that she's quite serious about getting a good Christian man to sweep her off her feet and father her six children. ;-) She'd like him to arrive with chariot (or white horse) on or around her 18th birthday, so we still have 2 years and 7 months for him to be 'prepared'.

However, I figured I would NEED that time to make the ONE HUNDRED & FORTY 6" blocks in this quilt.

I plan to start as soon as I can find the right fabrics. Pray for me...this is a big task. I already know I'm out of my depth. ;-)

Think about my you have a project or two that you've forgotten about or put aside? A project that is all about bringing beauty to your home? I'd love to hear about your projects and if you do decide to do a few please leave a comment so I can visit your blog and see your photos. :-)

The air conditioner guy just arrived!! He's about to connect my air con right now!!! No more melting by the wayside...oh joy!! \o/

Happy stitching day,


Terry said...

What a beautiful sunset! Your kitchen looks great too! :0)

Allie said...

Oh JENNY. You've got my kitchen! My dream kitchen! That looks scrumptious girl, what a happy place [especially with the new a/c hooked up, lol]!

I love your pudding bowl and all the lovely gifties from Brianna - what a nice thing to do!

I wish you success on that quilt. I look at it and run screaming the other way. But if anyone can do it, you can. How many blocks are there? Maybe you can do one a week?

Anonymous said...

Jenny, thank heavens for the air con man, I hope by now it is all installed and that you will be able to use it this arvo. I like the bread maker cover. My task at the moment is to continue on with a Christmas gift for one of the girls at my craft group. We are having a swap. I have now finished the stitchery, and I bought some mushroom pink fabric to go with it, yesterday. I am happy with it so far!!!!

Sarah - Kala said...

I feel the love in the parcel from Brianna. Wow! How kind of her to fill out the box. :)

Love the curtains and bread machine cover!! Darling, darling, darling!!!

I hope to paint my living room this month . . . so I'll post pictures. I feel like I can meet that challenge.

I must say I got a good chuckle out of your comment that cooking in that hot kitchen is an act of love. Truly, it must be!!!

Terri said...

What a lovely view from your kitchen....I adore your new items you fun! Brianna sure knows how to spoil a girl!
I love that quilt pattern and do believe that it will be a labor of love, but I know you can do it!I really want to participate in your chellenge but I'm so snowed under with commitments it isn't funny...

Loralynn said...

I so enjoy reading your posts! You are an amazing woman! I adore your curtains and matching bread machine cover...I don't think it's possible for you to make something that I don't fall in love with!

Your Daughter is so cute! I love her outlook on a Husband. I have no doubt that God will definately take good care of her when choosing her one true love!

Lauren Colless said...

This is a fantastic challenge!! I'm actually using October to do a huge clean out ready to do some mass home decorating over summer!! Thank you for showing us what you've done, I can't wait to see what else you whip up!
Good luck with the bridal quilt, I wish I'd had one, Blossom is one very lucky bride-to-be-someday :D

Shari said...

I like sunsets too. We don't have the heat here in Perth yet, although a little warmer for a few days before we get more rain (not complaining at all).

What an interesting challenge for October. I just love your curtains and the breadmaker cover. You've got all the perfect touches...

Congrats on the A/C!! Will make a lot of difference for you... although the heat does not seem to have slowed you down!

Hugs - Shari

PS - all the best with the Bridal quilt - I have every confidence in you!

Sherry said...

Your curtains & bread machine cover are just wonderful!! You did such a nice job on both. Love that pudding bowl too and very nice of Brianna to send all the extra goodies. Thanks for sharing the pics with us.

Dawn said...

Love them there curtains Jenny... they look fab.That pudding bowl looks so sweet and I can imagine all the lovely Christmas recipes mixed in there for you all to enjoy... year in year out...LOl... Blossom I would have put that scrumtious cake server in my glory box too if I needed one beautiful...
Wedding quilt for a beautiful bride from a wonderful quilting long to the wedding?....maybe 1 a week would make it in time.... he he
Hugs Dawn x x x


Jenny--I love those curtains--wished I had a window in my kitchen--and the bread manchine cover is adorable too--what a neat friend Brianna is--and do have a bridal challenge there,,but I have faith in you and I know you can do it!!! As for your challenge--I did redo most of the apartment this summer--but I need to make a cover for my rocking chair and i even have the fabric--but not sure about the time this month--but I will put it on my "LIST" and we will see--have a great day and now I really hopefully can say --keep cool!!!! Hugs, Di

Dolores said...

The kitchen looks bright and cheery with your creative touches and I have a feeling Brianna went the extra mile because you so often do. Please do not feel you are out of your depth with the quilt. It's like reading a 500 page book - you finish it one page at a time and so your quilt will be done one block at a time. Sometimes slow is good.

miss~nance said...

Beautiful sunset and your curtains and breadmaker cover are fabulous.

AND lucky you what a lovely parcel to recevie. The pudding bowl is quite cute and I do so love the jelly mould.

Good luck with that quilt.


Cattinka said...

Hi Jenny,
your new kitchen deco looks great, I specially like the breadbaker-cover. What a nice idea to make this bridal quilt for your daughter, she will love and cherish it for sure.

Amanda said...

What fun curtains. My major facelift project for the kitchen is to pain all our wooden cupboard doors, which are a rather orangey pine at the moment. So I don't know that I'll have time for much sewing additions this month, though my breadmaker could do with a new cover too, so perhaps I'll try for that.

Narelle said...

Those curtains look nice and cool and some lovely goodies in your parcel from Brianna.

I look forward to seeing your journey with Blossom's Quilt.

marina said...

You have definitely got a challenge with that quilt. How gorgeous that your daughter has a glory box. I remember putting things away for my own.
Love your kitchen crafts and gifts.

Anonymous said...

congrats, about the air-con

Diane H said...

Thanks Jenny for inviting us into your beautifully decorated kitchen and letting us spend some time with you there.

Crispy said...

Lots of wonderful "stuff" on your blog this morning, I really enjoyed myself...thank you. I too am starting the sampler as soon as my book gets here.


Fee said...

Love the new curtains Jen - they are very gorgeous.
Blossom is a treasure - I'm sure it will be a VERY special Man who will come and sweep her off her feet.
I have every faith in your abilities for the wedding quilt. What a treasure for Blossom (and the 6 grandkids who will squabble over who gets the wedding quilt)!
Fee x

Fee said...

p.s. Lots of things I would love to do around my place in October - but I'm not likely to get time. I am going to have a go at making some kind of quilted pouch for my new video camera. That's probably about the most I can manage!
Fee x

Colleen said...

I have been working on my Sylvias Bridal Sampler for over a year. I am doing it in blue and white. Love your curtains and your pudding bowl.

DAWNIE said...

Kitchen looks great. Jenny just a quick hi and a big thank you for the great Hug swap you oranised. I have now received my Mug Hug from Allie and it is great hop on over and have a look.

Abby and Stephanie said...

Gorgeous view. LOVE your new curtains. Fun fabric and the rick rack was a must. That's an ambitious quilt project but I know you can do it.

Robin in New Jersey said...

Yippie! The A/C guy arrived. You must have a nice cool house now!

I love your curtains. My kitchen curtains are plain white valances. I keep saying I am going to take them down and jazz them up!

That quilt for Blossom is going to be spectacular! And I see it's from Jennifer's quilting stories. Are you reading the books? How do you like them?

I found some fabric the other day that my son-in-law gave to me(a year ago) from the furniture store he does work for. I have been planning to make pillows and a throw for the sofa ever since May when we had our floors refinished and I bought new sofa covers. I plan to get to it THIS weekend!

Judith Tetley said...

A retro kitchen Jenny....I love it...think "red" accessories....swoon!
Hugs from Judith

Maggey and Jim said...

Oh, Jenny, I am so glad the air conditioner man finally arrived, now for the cool. Your curtains are just glorious and I love how you put it all together... It looks fab..That bowl is such a find and just in time for the holidays? Do you use the bread machine for your sourdough bread? I love my machine but have never made the sourdough in it.
Stay cool,

Maggi said...

What a great blog post. I saw the quilt made up by someone at the Festival of Quilts in August and was amazed by the amount of time and effort it must have taken to complete, so good luck.

Unknown said...

Love your curtains and such a simple idea and they look wonderful in your window.

Tell Blossom all good things come to those who wait, my second oldest granddaughter is just finishing up college and will wed her Prince Charming next June just after she graduates, and yes I am starting on her quilt now.
Barb in western NC

Carin said...

Jenny the curtains and the cover are wonderful!!!! Your kitchen is darling!

I am sure you can do a great job on the quilt, I hope you have a little more time just because even price charming should have a college degree. HUGS!

Leslie said...

That is a beautiful sunset :) I don't get to see the sun rise like that early in the morning because the mountain kind of blocks it...but it's still pretty to see the sunlight rising over the mountain and see it brightening up outside :)

Your vintage inspired curtains are so cute! Love them. I like your bread maker cover, too! Great job! You're so speedy!

I chuckled with your description of Blossom's man and how he would arrive and how you only have 2 years and 7 months....:D The quilt looks awesome and I'm sure you will do an amazing job on it! Good luck!


BTW~Aften stitched up her own heart pillow...I posted a picture on my blog today :) She thinks she can now do penny rugs! I have to give her credit for being ambitious but it's hard to explain to her that she's only 6! LOL

Anna Rosa Designs said...

Hi Jenny,
You clever lady, just whipping up curtains like that and oh so colourful.
Well done.
Hm, good luck with that wedding quilt, let me know if you need a hand.

Janice said...

How cheerful your kitchen is looking with your new accessories. I'm looking foward to seeing what else you create. Hasn't Brianna spoilt you - truly lovely gifts and I'm sure you will create a beautiful quilt for Blossom filled with much love.

Denise :) said...

Jenny!! "Material Obsession Two" arrived in today's mail! After dinner I plan on making a nice cup of tea and putting my feet up with this book. It's *so* pretty!!! Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU!

On another note, my daughter got married this past June. Instead of a guest book, she wanted guests to sign squares, which I will now make into a signature quilt. I love the one from the Elm Creek series, though -- so pretty! You'll manage it just fine!

Denise :)

Myra said...

Gorgeous sunset!
Great curtains and bread-maker cover! 8-)
Yup! Ya best get started on that bridal quilt! Looks like a lot of work! lol! 8-)
I gather you are all keeping cool now with your A/C, and here we've turned on the heater, and the snow came to visit today...
Happy stitchings Jenny! 8-)

A Spoonful Of Sugar said...

What an inspiring post - love the new cafe curtains - so retro, and the appliance cover also brightens up your kitchen. Your Robert Gordon goodies are lovely - especially the pudding bowl and jelly mould - you will be set for your Christmas entertaining. Good luck for the quilt - what a masterpiece it will be:)

Kathy Raker said...

Lovely sunset! Cute curtains and breadmaker cover. I so enjoy your blog.