TGI Thursday

Top 5 Things to Do This Weekend #7

Hello again and welcome to my weekly post where I share ideas that I hope will inspire you to spend your weekend doing something fun and creative and… maybe learn something new along the way!

Before September completely slips through our hands I’d like to say a word or two about sewing and National Sewing Month.

National Sewing Month

(The above image is from the National Sewing Month website. If you want other graphics to promote NSM or your site or other social media platforms, the site has a link that will direct you additional downloadable files.)

Sewing was my path to quilting. Before I even thought about quilting, I was making many of my own clothes in high school – an accepted practice back then as a majority of the designer clothing and designer labels available for mass production were in the very beginning stages of influence and significance.

Forty+ years later, fashion and design trends continue to be vitally important guiding principles that help us form many of the decisions we make.

Since the Industrial Revolution our culture has gradually evolved from “handmade” and “homemade” to mass-produced and ready-to-wear however, the need for self-expression remains unchanged. The need for self-expression is just as vital to our sense of well-being today as it was in generations past.

Sewing, of course, is not the only path to self-expression but for those of us who love the texture of fabric and find inspiration creating an usable item from a flat piece of cloth, a pair of scissors and a spool of thread, sewing offers endless opportunity for self-expression.

Are you new to sewing? The National Sewing Circle is a great place to start.  Instructional videos are available and cover a wide range of topics.  While browsing their site earlier today prices on most (if not all) instructional videos in this cateory are drastically reduced!

I also found a project pattern set – 10 patterns for $15.99!

All this is just for starters…

So scroll down and let’s get this weekend started!

1. Work + Flow

Sew / Quilt Flow Chart

September, aka National Sewing Month, offers 30 full days to sew, create, design and dream. That’s the potential for a LOT of projects and ideas to be transformed into projects. With that comes the potential for many projects to go unfinished or neglected however, there is a solution: “WorkFlowy“.

I discovered this system of organization about a year ago and love it. It is a clean, uncluttered outline format designed to help you keep track of multiple projects.

WorkFlowy is designed to not only help you get organized, you stay organized.

Do you look at your ‘To-Do’ list and feel so overwhelmed you don’t know where to start?

As you accomplish a task or goal, you are able to mark it off (a line is drawn across the task) and the wording is faded. (You can completely remove as well – your choice) but sometimes a visual that allows you to see what all you have accomplished is just the incentive you need to forge ahead – to put one foot in front of the other and get that next task checked off.

What else is so great about it?

It’s FREE. It’s FUN and it’s EASY to use. Want to take a look around? Here is your very own invitation to organization!


2. Fall in Paducah

Paducah, KY

The American Quilt Society has created another Four days of Fun – September 11 – 14. It is my intention to be in Paducah, KY this time next year. If I start planning now…today…(see item #1 above) that is a goal that should be completely doable. While I’m there, I’ll also be taking a tour of National Quilt Museum.


3. What’s Happening in the Sewing Room

It seems a quilter I follow – Sherri at A Quilting Life and a blogger I also follow – Christy at Confessions of a Serial DIY’er have been channeling each other’s thoughts.

~~ My own sewing room is getting smaller by the minute however, I am not at a point in my life where that is going to change anytime soon. So, in the meantime I have to continue to make the most of what space I have. Accomplishing this involves organization and re purposing existing furniture.

Antique Sewing Table

The image above is a sewing table I found in a thrift shop about 20 years ago. It needs some TLC – quite a bit of TLC to be honest, but I think after a little cleaning, some fresh stain or paint, leg extensions and new hardware, this would be one (of many) solutions to my sewing room organization dilemma.

~~ Bowl Fillers – I’ve been scouring Pinterest for ideas that are cute, unique and easy to make. I found a few but when I checked out my blog following this morning and found these cute, unique and adorable sweater pumpkins I knew my quest was over.

Christy's Sweater Pumpkins

Now, if I want to get both of these projects done this weekend, I will certainly need to plan ahead and get organized!

The sweater pumpkin post includes a video tutorial – watching this first will surely save time and frustration I would otherwise experience if trying to “wing it” on my own.


4. Going Green

I love the idea of reusable shopping bags but I don’t love the bags I’m currently using. Browsing the web for ideas and inspiration brought me to this shop and then to this colorful pattern!

As much as I love color, I may give this pattern a try in a solid canvas or even waxed canvas to make it super sturdy and water resistant. I think it would be fun to make 3 or 4 of these for each of the four seasons and a perfect excuse for a fabric road trip!

To accomplish this monumental task without adding to my unfinished project pile, devote one weekend at the beginning of each season for purpose of making 3-4 reusable bags.

My ‘WorkFlowy’ is getting a workout!


5. Hey Susan! What ‘Ya Cookin’?

Pam at House of Hawthornes has done it again. This time with a quick, easy and delicious recipe using all my favorite ingredients: apples, walnuts, cinnamon and butter. 15 minutes to prepare + 2.5 hours in a crock pot – the result = a slice of autumn heaven in a bowl…

Crock Pot Baked Apples

I can’t think of a better way to end a weekend full of planning, dreaming, creating, re purposing and organizing than this!


How will you spend your weekend?

Have a favorite recipe? Feel free to share in the comments below!

Be Creative & Have Fun This Weekend!

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Top 5 Things to Do This Weekend # 6

Seems like it was only yesterday…OK, yesterday two weeks ago, that I was sitting here eager to share with you a week’s worth of great finds, projects and inspiration to help you plan ahead and make the most of the weekend ahead.

Since my last post a holiday has passed and we are now full swing into the first week of September – aka National Sewing Month.

There is a lot to cover here so, here we go…

1. Fabric Releases and Reserves

We’ll start with a beautiful fabric collection by Sherri and Chelsi for Moda Fabrics – Summer Sweet. The link takes you to the Fat Quarter Shop which lists the option to reserve the Jolly Bar fabric cut. This, and the honey bun are the only two cuts from this fabric line to be released in January 2020. If you want another cut (yardage, fat quarter, etc.,) you’ll need to wait another month for the February 2020 ship date.

Summer Sweet Quilting Fabric

Also shipping in February 2020 is this fabulous collection, Modern Farmhouse by Simple Simon & Co for Riley Blake. A beautiful variation of the “Farmer’s Daughter” collection I fell in love with a couple of years ago.

Modern Farmhouse Quilting Fabric

Wanting something to be released a bit sooner – like maybe next month (September 2019)? This quilt kit includes the pattern, a Jolly Bar fabric cut (plus binding fabric) to make this Refractions quilt. Both the pattern and fabric line – Harper’s Garden were also created by Sherri & Chelsi.


2. Re purposed & Remarkable

The minute I came across this great find I knew I didn’t need to look any further. Gail from myrepurposedlife.com is so creative and her newest creation – from a cutting board – is now on my list of “things-I-must-do-before-I-die”.

Wooden Cutting Board

After viewing her creation, it becomes easy to see a cutting board as one of those items that also serves as a blank canvas filled with endless possibilities.


3. Good Eats

Nothing has better taste or scent than fajitas. I’ve made them a few times in a skillet (stainless steel fry pan or saute pan) and they were OK but not great. I no longer have my well seasoned iron skillet – although I could purchase a very nice one here – and I’m thinking the iron skillet makes a lot of difference with this type of dish. However, I came across this Sheet Pan Chicken Fajita recipe and I am inspired to give this a try.

Sheet Pan Chicken Fajitas

If fajitas are not your thing but a quick, easy and good tasting recipe is, take a look at the multitude of Jamielyn’s other recipes and videos (DIY / holiday projects Too!) She also loves naps and chocolate and I love everything she posts!

UPDATE: Between writing about his recipe and publishing this post I have tried the Sheet Pan Fajitas – used chicken and I have to admit they are the best I’ve ever tasted!!!


4. Return to the Template

Clam Shell Template

My original intent was to revisit another of my UFO’s, the “Fruit Stand” quilt (an image of Trisch Price’s finished quilt can be found in this post). It uses a unique template called the “Clammy” but various web articles and Pinterest images depicting the upcoming fall / winter / Christmas season diverted my attention and the next thing I know I’m thinking of ways to use the same pattern and template but switching out the “fruit in a wooden box” motif for one depicting Christmas ornaments in a cardboard (or wooden?) box. I’m hoping this will inspire me to do something productive – and finally finish a project using this template.


5. National Sew Jelly Roll Day

Jelly Roll Quilt Fabric

This yearly event is still just over 2 weeks away but I want to give you a head’s up now – Saturday, September the 21st will be here before you know it!

At this time last year I was not aware such an event existed and it was only by a stroke of luck that I happened upon last year’s announcement – on that day which officially occurs on the third Saturday of every September.

Curious as to what all the fuss is about I did a little research and discovered a few interesting facts about Moda’s “Project Jelly Roll” and National Sew a Jelly Roll Day. The whole idea began with a problem frequently encountered by quilters (so glad to know I’m not alone here!) We purchase a significant number of these tempting fabric precuts and, do so without having a specific project in mind. A few months will pass by and all of a sudden we will take notice of these nice and neat round rolls of fabric strips sitting quietly on a shelf waiting patiently to come out and play!

The good people at Moda reached a threshold and decided to do something about all these stacks of unused jelly rolls and created National Sew a Jelly Roll Day as an incentive to take down a jelly roll, unwrap it and make something – anything!

Those rolls were made for sewing and that’s just we’ll do!


Thank you for stopping by! I hope you found something to inspire and help make the most of your upcoming weekend.

As always, feel free to leave a comment letting us know what you did this weekend!

Susan