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Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Fabric... Welcome to the Patriotic Quilter where I like to share all things quilty as well as red, white, and blue! Please feel free to look around and enjoy yourself! I would love to hear from you.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Laundry Detergent

Check out this jar of lovelieness!


I finally made my own laundry detergent this week!  I've read many recipes and blogs on the process but most of them were liquids and required buckets and containers, etc.  Then this week, I came across this blog with an easy-sounding recipe for powdered detergent.

The recipe is simple:
1 cup grated bar soap (such as Fels Naptha, Castile, or even Ivory)
1/2 cup borax
1/2 cup washing soda


The Borax, Washing Soda, and Fels-Naptha soap were in the laundry section of the store.  Don't mix up washing soda with baking soda--they aren't quite the same. 

The first store I went to didn't have the borax or the fels-naptha, so I bought Ivory soap.  The day I began to make the detergent, I got out the ivory and started to grate it.  I forgot to take a picture, but I just used my hand-held cheese grater and grated the bar of soap into a bowl just as I would a block of cheese.  The blog that I've linked you to says that a bar of Ivory should yield around a cup of grated soap, but mine seemed more like a cup and a half.  Of course, it is rather fluffly and I didn't pack it in the measuing cup too firmly--I didn't want to have the soap compact into a hard lump.  After I got the soap grated, I remembered that I didn't have borax, so I ran out to the store.  This time I went to the Blue Big Box store that is famous for their greeters.  They had all the ingredients, including the Fels-Naptha soap, so I bought a bar of that as well as the borax.

When I got home again, I decided to make more than one recipe of the detergent, and since I now had the Fels-Naptha soap, I decided to use it.  That bar is more creamy, buttery looking.  In fact, it looked rather like a nice block of a good parmesan cheese and the texture was sort of the same, too.  It was a bit harder than the Ivory, but still shredded easily.  The smell is more pungent than the Ivory, though and it yielded around 3 cups, so I grated another bar of ivory and ended up with six cups (plus or minus) of grated soap.

I put some of the soap into my lidded container, then sprinkled in some of the 3 cups of borax and 3 cups of washing soda, and kept layering all ingredients until they were all in the container.  I thought that layering it in would help in the mixing process.  Next I put on the lid and began to shake.  What a mistake!!!  Shaking it seemed to sift the layers back to soap and powder, not combine as I hoped.  So I got out a sturdy spoon and began to stir.  And stir.  And stir.  Finally, it seemed nicely combined.


Twelve cups of the vaious ingredients didn't seem to fill my gallon cracker jar very full, did it!

 
Once it is mixed up and ready, the directions call to use only one Tablespoon in a normal load or 2 if your clothes are heavily soiled.

I was eager to test it, so I went up and found a load of clothes--mostly towels becasue our towels are dark (red and navy) and I wanted to see if any of the powder didn't dissolve.  I ran the wash and it seemed to work just fine.  It is really low sudsing so it makes it appropriate for HE machines, too, though I have a standard.  When I removed the clean laundry from the washer to put it in the dryer, it felt softer than with boughten detergent.  In other words, it felt like I had used laundry softener, but I hadn't.  I sort of like that.  I dried it and it came out all fluffy and nice.

You can use a drop or two of essential oil if you would like some scent, however, my husband and I are "unscented" people.  In fact, I usually purchase a "free and clear" detergent, but no more!  From now on, I will be making my own.  I do not have a cost breakdown, but I made all of that for around 10 dollars, and there is still well over half a box of the soda and borax left over, as well as two bars of Ivory.  What really is going to make a difference is that you only need 1 tablespoon, so it is going to last forever!

That night, my husband came home from work.  He had PT (Physical Training--excercise) that morning.  They played a game called "chaos ball" which involves a soccer ball, football, and frisbee all in play at the same time with a goalie on each end.  The field was a muddy mess.  He brought home his PT clothes and they were a disgusting, muddy, sweaty mess.  I threw all of it, including his shoes, in the washer with two Tablespoons and it came really clean.  (Well, maybe not the socks, but there wasn't much hope for them anyway.)  It was really convenient of him to provide me with a good test load! 

I have heard from some of you that you are also frugal.  I hope you try this out!  I have also made my own dishwasher detergent and it also uses the borax and washing soda.  Here is the link for that recipe and believe me, it works better than the boughten stuff as well, and is so much cheaper!

Have a great weekend, and if you are here in the US, enjoy the holiday!! 

JoAnne

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Seaside Dimestore Schnibble


 


Since it is nearly the end of the month, it is time for me to share the August Schnibble.  Sinta and Sherri host Another Year of Schnibbles and each month, on the first, they feature the parade of the Schnibbles made for that month and then they announce the pattern for the next month.  I have been having so much fun doing them this year.  I have missed one month, June, but hope to get that one made one of these days before the end of the year, so I will have 12 lovely quilts.

Are you familiar with Schnibbles?  They are the creations of Carrie Nelson and you can find them at lots of quilt shops or at the link I provided.  I love making them because they are usually fairly small (finishing around 40"-45"), you can use charm packs to make them (a perfect chance to play with fabrics you may not usually be drawn to), and they generally go together quickly and easily.

The pattern for this month is Dimestore.

Image of Dimestore PDF ~ Schnibbles No. 467
 
 
I like how the pattern features the lighter fabric in the larger pieces.  Initially, my thought was to do something not from a charm pack, but from my stash of patriotic fabrics.  I figured that I had a light patriotic print that would be fun to feature.  I went up to search.  That was the day I ended up going through all my fabric, removing it from the large bins, folding it in that neat way around a 6 inch ruler, and stacking it on my shelves.  In the process of going through all my fabric, I came across this set of charm squares and some extra yardage that I bought earlier this summer.
 

It is Seaside by October Afternoon  by Riley Blake
 
I know both October Afternoon and Basic Gray from way back when they were scrapbooking paper lines.  I love that they are now fabric, too!  I fell in love with the "vintagy" look of this Seaside line.
 
 
I decided that the light print with the children on it would be ideal for the larger areas in Dimestore.  I ordered a yard of it so that I could do some fussy cutting.  I realized that the charm packs would not be enough, so I also got a layer cake. 
 

I needed 64 of these 3.5" squares and I thought a yard would be enough.  It wasn't, though.  I was two or three short!

 
I had some thinner strips that I thought I could piece together, and so I did.  I think they matched up pretty good and I was willing to use them, but then I remembered that there was a square of it in the  layer cake, and I was able to get all I needed  out of it. 

 
I'm sorry that the photos turned themselves.  It would be so nice is Blogger had the ability to rotate!
 
I began working on the pattern, and really, the most difficult part was all the fussy-cutting.  Once I had everything all ready, it just flew together.
 
 
 

 



 

 
I pieced the back from the leftovers.
 

 
I just love binding with a plaid or stipe!
 
 
I'm really pleased with it!  This week I got it quilted and bound. 
 
I had high hopes of taking it to a beach for the photo shoot, but our weather has not cooperated.  We have had lots of bad weather including flooding rains, so I was forced to do an indoor shoot. 
 
I'm looking forward to the upcoming parade.  I hope you all check it out.
 
JoAnne


Wednesday, August 29, 2012

A Winner!

Today was the day that I chose the winner of the ditty bag!



 I have to say that it was really exciting.  The random number generator chose Melanie Moore!  She chose the light one.  I guess my bag is going to England--I wish I could hand-deliver it!

I did four more star blocks yesterday and did some more cutting.  I was hoping to do 10 a day, at least, but so far I have only 10 done in three days.  Oh well, as long as there is forward motion, it is a good thing.  I did restock the fridge and pantry, so I was constructive.

I hope everyone has a great day!
JoAnne 

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

My Sewing Desk

I am happy to report that I got batting, layered my Schnibble (this month's pattern is Dimestore), got it quilted, bound, and washed yesterday!  I'm really pleased with it and can't wait to show it later this week.   I also was able to make 4 more star blocks (only 115 more to go!)

Getting back to the quilting room, I wanted to share a bit about my sewing table.

 
As I mentioned briefly in the post about the island, it features another countertop from the Habitat Restore.  This one is the standard width.  I have used  countertops before--in Hawaii I bought a new one at the home improvement store.  I ran that counter the whole width of the room, just over 10 feet.  That counter came with the "back splash."  I didn't want that--just a flat counter, so we cut it off.  This time, we found the flat counter--perfect!  All we did was to trim it to fit the alcove (73 inches) and then used a hole saw to cut a hole in the back  for cords.
 
 
 
The counter is just sitting on these Closet Maid closet organizers.  You may be able to see a crack/seam under the thread catcher.  The closet organizers are a bit narrow, so I put one in front of another.  This gives me really deep storage cubbies on each side but more importantly, supports the full width of the counter.


This side is just like the other one.  To be clear, I have 4 closet organizers in all, one in front of the other on each end.  You can also use file cabinets, or nightstands to hold up the counter.  I chose the closet organizers because they are a bit higher (remember I'm tall.)  There are also pretty inexpensive.  The other feature that I like is that they are not too wide.  Before Hawaii, I was using two unfinished base cabinets with a six foot long counter on top.  The cabinets were so wide that there wasn't very much open space underneath for my legs.  So far, I'm really enjoying the closet organizers.  If I owned this house, and wasn't planning to move, I would have my husband run a 2x4 or 2x6 along the wall behind the counter for additional suppport.  With the much longer counter that I had in Hawaii, I had to use a small bookcase to support the middle. 

So there you have it, a sewing table just over 6 feet long for under $20 (because I already had the side supports.) 

I'm off to grocery shop and do some housework.  I'm trying to make at least a few star blocks everyday, though, so hopefully I'll be able to play later!

JoAnne

Monday, August 27, 2012

This Week

Goodness, it is almost the end of the month!  I have my Schnibble pieced, but I would like to get it quilted.  On Friday, I pieced that back and then I went to sandwich but discovered that I don't have any batting that would work, so I'm off to the store to pick some up as soon as I finish this post.

Meanwhile, I finally got working on this!

Do you remember how I discovered this project in McCalls Quilting waayy back in April and fell in love with it?  I wanted it to be our new bed quilt since our old one was nearly 12 years old.  Anyway, I still love it but now we really need it as we upgraded to a king-sized bed.  I'm making the blocks a bit larger (8 inches) but I'm still going to need 121 of them!  Luckily, they are just variable star blocks and really easy.  Here are the first two on my design wall and I've been cutting and cutting!


I'm making the points (flying geese units) using Monique Dillard's Fit to Be Geese ruler.  I love the technique and accuracy!

Well, I've got to run and get that batting.  See you tomorrow!

JoAnne

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Ditty Bags Giveaway

Hello Everyone!  I have really been appreciating all the comments I've received this week.  It is so nice of you all to take a few minutes to share your thoughts.  Thanks!

Are you familiar with the term "ditty bag?"  In the old days of ocean-going, every sailor had his own bag, a ditty bag, in which he kept his valuables.  A few weeks ago when my parents and niece were visiting, we took an excursion on an old-time schooner.  A few times a week, they do a pirate voyage for the kids.  The crew dresses up as pirates and the kids get to do things like help to raise the sails, steer the ship, etc.

 
 
  One of the programs consisted of one of the crewmember talking about his ditty bag and its contents.
This canvas bag is the ditty bag.  Inside it had sewing implements--sailors did a lot of canvas repair, etc.  The crewmember explained that back in the days before resumes and letters of recommendation, captains could tell the ability of a sailor by how his ditty bag appeared.  Experienced sailors had nicer ones, I guess. 

I'm not sure if you know the pattern line ByAnnie.  I enjoy the patterns and Annie released a new one called Ditty Bags.  The pattern makes three sizes of bags.  They zip close and have a side handle.  They are perfect for cosmetics, sewing supplies, etc.  The smallest one could easily go in a purse.  Annie recommends that you use a product she developed called "Soft and Stable" for the padding/batting.  I love it for bags and purses--it is easy to quilt but it provides much more body than batting.
 
The pattern makes three sizes and I made them all!  I used a fat quarter pack from the line Indie by Pat Bravo.  It is unlike anything I usually buy, but I was interested in trying something new.  The fabric had the best "hand"--it feels so silky.  The large, busy prints are fun, too.

 
This is one of the medium bags.  I made two of that size.  I made all four at the same time.  I find that it is hardly any more work to do two or three of something than it is to make one.

 
This is the inside.  The directions feature binding pieces to enclose the seams and make everything look very tidy and professional.

 
This is the other medium.  See how it is standing up by itself?  That is thanks to the body provided by the Soft and Stable.
 
 
 
 
This is the large size...



... and the small.
 
 
 
 
The bags zip closed and feature this small, loop handle which is perfect for carrying it around or holding onto while unzipping the bag.
 
 
The bags were lots of fun to make and I'm really pleased with the design and results. 
 
To celebrate having over 50 followers, I'm going to giveaway one of the medium-sized bags.
 
 
  Please become a follower if you aren't already, leave a comment on this post prior to Tuesday telling me which one you would prefer (the dark pink or the light one) and if you are a no-reply, also provide your email address. 
 
Good Luck!
JoAnne


Friday, August 24, 2012

Not the Best Day

Hello Everyone!

Well, that truck I heard yesterday was indeed the moving van.  Prior to its arrival, my husband moved our vehicles out of the driveway and parked them on the street in the cul de sac so they would not be in the way.

We went outside to greet the movers, and after the driver said hello, he next asked if we already received part of the shipment.  Uh Oh!  "Why no, we haven't,"  we replied.  So the unloading began.  When it was over, there were at least 40 missing boxes/items.  The driver called the office and was given a message that my husband was to call.  He did and soon discovered that only one of the two crates of our stuff had arrived.  The other was believed to be in California.

Let me back up here and explain that the military has a fairly new system of transportion (moving) which is supposed to save money, but really just removes any gov't employee who used to HELP soldiers and families and act as advocates in case of problems.  The result was that when my husband called back to the office in Kansas to arrange for the delivery of our storage, (Kansas is where our stuff went into storage), he was given a phone number of a moving company.  He called them, but they didn't have the contract and gave him the phone number of another company.  This went on until the fourth company (located in Seattle, Washington) did in fact, have control of our stuff.  So a company in Seattle was arranging the delivery of our storage located in Kansas to our home here in Virginia.  Okay...  So this Seattle company arranged for the shipment of our crates to arrive in Norfolk, VA to a local agent for delivery to our house.

So when Dale called the local agent yesterday morning and was told that they thought our other crate went to California, he wasn't able to confirm this with the Seattle company because of the time change. (It was too early in the morning.)  We noted on the paperwork that it was an incomplete shipment and the movers left.  Frankly, I was glad there was only half the stuff because then we didn't have ALL of it to deal with.

 I mentioned earlier that there was nothing sadder than unpacking UFOs and trying to find a place to stick them.  Well, I was wrong.   Dealing with "stuff" that you have successfully lived without for three years is infinitely worse.  I guess I'm at that point where I want to just chuck most of it.  I'm sick of having all this stuff just because we have it.  Keepsakes are fine,  I have no problem with them, but this other stuff only brings up negative energy.  Grr. (I am more than willing to downsize, but the other person in this house isn't.)

When enough time passed, my husband called Seattle and yes, our other crate indeed went to California.  But we weren't alone, apparently a family in California had a crate go to Virginia.  Futher more, "No, we don't know when your other crate will arrive in Virginia."  Great.  What really ticked us off was that the local agent knew that half our stuff was missing and didn't bother to tell us.  We talked to them just the afternoon before and they knew then.

So after getting all of that straightened out, Dale went to move the cars back to the driveway and found a note on his.  Despite the fact that he was parked on the public street, the homeowner of the house in front of which he had parked informed him that we had perfectly adequate parking at our house and were not to make a habit of parking in front of his.  I guess he missed seeing the moving van at our house?  Good grief!   What a gracious welcome to the neighborhood!

Of course, you must know what is coming next.  All the book boxes (including the quilt books, I hope) are in the lost crate.  I'm fairly certain it will eventually show up.  I'm also determined that today is going to be a great day!  It is Friday after all!  I think I will find something to "play with" in my sewing room.

JoAnne

Thursday, August 23, 2012

The Rest of the Stuff

I'm afraid I don't have much time to blog today.  We are expecting (any minute now) our final shipment of stuff this morning.  This is the stuff that went into long-term storage when we left Kansas to go to Hawaii.  We haven't seen it for over 3 years now.

I am looking forward to getting it for one major reason.  When we got to Hawaii and unpacked, I didn't have any quilt books except for the 3-4 that had been up in my sewing room.  Apparently, they got put in the wrong pile and went to storage.  Of course, that is what I've been hoping for.  Won't the joke be on me if we get this stuff and there are no quilt books in it? 

Have A Great Day!  I hear a truck on the street now.

JoAnne

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

The Island

Wow!  Thanks for all the positive comments yesterday!  It was a fun day.   The most interest had to be in the island, so I thought that would be the first thing I talk more about in depth.

I can cut on most any comfortable surface.  In my last room, I cut on the other end of the sewing table.  In the past I shared my space with the laundry room, and I used the top of the dryer.  The dining room table is popular, too.  But when I saw the space in this room, I realized I wanted something in the middle of the room.

My last house--in Hawaii--had a fabulous kitchen island.  When I had to deal with large pieces, I would take my mat and rulers downstairs and use it.  I loved the height (36")--I'm 5'9" so fairly tall.  Cutting on a table hurts my back.  I also realized fairly quickly that I could make that first cut with the rotary cutter and then instead of turning everything around to proceed in cutting strips, I could just easily walk to the other side of the fabric, ensuring everything stayed perfectly straight.  It was also really handy for pin basting quilt sandwiches, too.  So what I wanted in my new sewing room was an island.

My first instinct was to search Craig's List for used islands.  The results weren't good.  The next step was Google.  I had been searching for quilt room/sewing studio/etc. ideas for weeks.  One idea that I stumbled on was to use two dressers back-to-back with something for a surface on top.  I think the first one I read about used a door.  I liked this idea becasue I really wanted drawers for storage.  I did browse the kitchen cabinet section of the home improvement store, but the prices were higher than I wanted.  (Remember--the theme of this room is Cheap!)

So it was back to Craig's list, thrift shops, etc. to try to find some reasonably-priced dressers.  If you have never looked for two--sort of matching--used dressers that have functioning drawers, and don't smell, for a reasonable price, well--it isn't easy.  I did find inexpensive new dressers at Kmart, but they are pressed wood and they were around $70 each, so they were more than I wanted to spend.  Meanwhile, I was also investigating what I would use for a top.  I was settling for a sheet or two of MDF because I knew that a door may not be wide enough for the two dressers.  And then we went to my new favorite place ever!  The Habitat for Humanity Restore!!!  This is a place where they have new and used cabinets, furniture, building supplies, etc.  We looked at cabinets and furniture, and then we went around a corner and found used counter tops!  I planned to use a counter top for my sewing surface (I'll blog about that later) and was delighted to find a length of standard-width counter without the "backsplash" at the back.  This one was just a flat surface--exactly what I wanted.  It was $20 for an 8 foot counter.  Next to it was a matching, wider length (36")--like for an island!  This was perfect--just what I wanted.  It wasn't marked, but we took it up front anyways.  We were told that it was a dollar a foot--and it was 8 feet long, too.  It was $8!  Both counters were used and had some chips, etc. but the price was right.  Most of the damage was at the ends and I knew we could easily trim it down.

Now that I had a top, I really was trying to make a decision on the dresser situation.  I decided to go back to Kmart to look at those dressers one more time.  They were on sale!  They were down to $39 each, so it was an easy choice to get them.  My husband and Dad put them together one evening while my parents were visiting.  I knew that the dressers were only 31 inches or so tall, and that I wanted my island to be 36 inches tall, so the plan was to build a plywood platform to use as a base for the dressers which would bring them up to 36."  When I put the dressers back-to-back I thought they would be fine at the original height.  We couldn't work any more on the island until the next weekend, so I worked on a quilt during the week, and used the tops of the dressers for my mat to cut.  Boy am I glad I tried it out.  The 31" height was not tall enough!  So last weekend, we made the base with a sheet of plywood and 1x4s.  Once it was constructed, I painted it and the legs with white spray paint.

When dry, we took the base up to the room, applied felt pads to the bottom, then set it down and put the dressers on top. 
You can see the platform under the dresser.  You may be wondering why those side board are "hanging" out there.  I didn't want the base to stick out that wide--I would keep kicking it. 


One other step we did for the dressers was to measure the distance from the top of the drawers to the top of the dresser.  I found that it was about half an inch.  The counter has the over hang and the over hang was 5/8s of an inch.  If we put the countertop right on the dresser, the top drawers wouldn't be able to open, so we cut a piece of quarter inch plywood the same size as the dresser tops.  I didn't paint it, as it would be hidden under the counter.  I was so glad I thought about this step!  I would have been ticked if we got everything together and the drawers wouldn't work!

Next we measured everything from the floor up--the total height was targeted to be 36" and it was!  The legs we found at the home improvement store were 36" so we didn't have to cut them down.  We trimmed the dmaged ends off the counter, carried it up to the room, attached the legs to one end, put the other end on the dressers, and then screwed from inside the dressers through the top and the 1/4 inch plywood and into the bottom of the counter.  Presto!  I now have a surface for cutting that is 36" wide and 7.5 feet long!  The total amount spent (dressers, counter, legs, plywood, etc.) was less than $200!  I was thrilled.

Then I noticed a problem.  We had just sat the dressers on the base, but the weight of the counter top was forcing the dressers apart at the bottom.  So we got some mending plates and used them to hold the two dressers together.
I didn't want to look at that seam with the patches on it, so I went to the craft store and got some cork tiles.  (They were 40% off!) I stuck them on the dressers to hide the seam.  And I get a bonus bulletin board!
You can see the side is now all "corked" in this picture.

The cut ends of the countertop were ugly pressed board--no laminate covering them.  I know you can buy bits of laminate and trim them, but that seemed like more money than I wanted to spend, so initially I just painted the ends white, too.  But as I was measuring with one of my yardsticks, I realized that a yardstick would make a neat trim piece!  I bought two for 69 cents each and have them tacked up.  I still need to round the corners, though.  I filled most of the open space underneath with the rolling plastic drawers that I had, and my trash can even fits underneath. 

I am now going to look for a stool or two at thrift stores becasue it is so large that several people could sit there working on different projects.

  I know this post was pretty long, but the hardest part of constructing this was finding the pieces and trying to decide what would be best to use--and then working through the steps of assembly--in other words, the thought process, so I ended up sharing that with you.

Here is the "back view" once more.  If this is a project you would like to undertake and have more questions, just ask.  I'll be glad to share!

Have a Great Day!
JoAnne





Monday, August 20, 2012

It's Here--My New Quilting Room Reveal!

Finally, I have the majority of my new quilting room done.  I'm afraid I've seriously been neglecting setting up the rest of the house, but a quilter's got to do what a quilter's got to do.  This is going to be a long post as is so I will discuss more of the features in other blog entries. 



When you enter the room, you come down these few stairs.  My quilting room is over the garage.  Despite the fact that you actually go down into the room, I feel like it is a "loft" and I'm up in my own special world!



As you travel down the steps, the first thing on the right is the design wall.  I blogged about how I made that two days ago.



Just past the design wall, there is a corner that reveals the steps up to the attic.  No, I haven't taken that space over for additional storage yet!  Ha ha. And the N?  You maybe be asking, "hey, your name starts with a J.  What does the N stand for?"  My reply?  "Nothing."  (heh heh heh) 


Tucked in the alcove between the attic steps and the next wall is my sewing space.  It is just over 6 feet long. 


Have you seen this post by Kathie about her wall of little quilts?  I saw it and it inspired me to hang up many of mine above my sewing area.  I love how cozy it looks.  It is going to be wonderful in the winter.  Having all that color is inspiring, too.  The large patriotic one was made by quilting friends of mine from when I lived in Georgia.  And the house one hanging by the N?  It is from quilting friends back at Fort Huachuca, Arizona.  Not only do I feel cozy from all the quilts around me, but I also feel surrounded by friends.



Next is one of the windows.  It is a "regular" window.  In front, on my Great-Grandma's treadle machine, I keep my laptop.


Next to the window are two tall shelves.  These were in the garage when we moved in.  I moved them up here for more free storage/display.


On the left side are some of my precuts.  I finally get to display them!



We turn the other corner and against the sloped wall my scrapbooking supply cabinet fits nicely.  Baskets hold unquilted tops and my collection of yardsticks. 



Next is another alcove which is the perfect place to nestle in my new ironing board.  It is below the big front windows which let in so much light and really contribute to the bright, aerial feel of the room.  The chevron pattern is a throw rug.  I found it, and only it--no other colors, sizes, or duplicates at TJ Max the other day.  Since red is my favorite color, it came home with me.  I'm hanging it behind the ironing board because in the past, I've noticed that the wall behind my ironing station accumulates overspray of starch.  This way I can take it down the rug and wash it instead of scrubbing the wall!  If you look closely, you can see that today was a rainy day.



Around the corner from the ironing station is the closet.  To the right of it, you can see part of the cabinet where I keep office supplies and my ipod.  My favorite feature of the closet?  It is lit!  There is lots of storage here.



The closet is really wider than it looks.  This far corner is where UFOs go to linger.  Can I just say that there is nothing worse than unpacking UFOs? 


But by far, the piece de resistance is this!  The huge island in the middle of the room for cutting.



It is 7 1/2 feet long and 3 feet wide!  I'm tall, so I made it 36" high.  I'll be blogging more about making this later.  I'm in love with it!


Here it is from the backside. 

Well, that is the quick tour for now.  As I may have mentioned once or twice, I will be writing more about some of the features later.  Please come back and read about them! 

Have a Great Day,
JoAnne