The Road Trip preparation has begun!  What trip you ask?  Over the last couple summers our family of five has rented an motorhome for vacations across the United States.  This was our time to see if we liked RV life and if it worked for our family. Guess what?  IT DOES!  We LOVE it.  So last fall, we purchased our very own new-to-us RV and plan to hit the road for TWO months.  Yes, two months.  We leave one month from today, so the real planning has started!  Well, kind of.  The RV is in storage until next weekend.  So for the time being, I shall craft and blog!  And yes, I will be blogging along the way this summer so you may follow along!  (You may follow on Instagram too - username Anns_Photos)

A Map.  Of course you need a map on a road trip!  This one is for the kids.  I printed off this map at Mr. Printables.  Ran it though the Xyron machine with the laminate top and magnet back.  Cut it apart and called it done.  Until I realized that it probably will be too big to fit on the oven door in the RV -- the only place it will stick.  Bummer.  The plan is build the puzzle by putting up each state as we arrive.  Well, this year, we are ONLY covering about 17 states, so it will work -- for now. 

Where are we going?  You will have to wait and see!!!
Next up,  a project for Hailey.  She has been very concerned on how she is going to bring her earrings safely on the trip.  Mommy to the rescue!  And along came the earring wallet.  
We get so many questions about the trip.....
What do you eat?  At restaurants every day?
Where to you park the RV?
Don't you get sick of riding?
This is awesome, but don't you have to work?
Are you bringing your sewing machine?
Where are you going?
Then of course, there is always questions about the toilet and sewer!
I will answer these and many more in the coming days.   Let me know if you have other questions as well.  I would be happy to answer them.  And as we travel, I hope you will enlighten us on must see places along our route!
Pillow Makeover stats: 2 down, 1 to go.  Introducing Pillow #2. 
Have you tried paper piecing?  Oh, you should.  Love it!  I used the same pattern as the star pin cushion only this time kept it the actual size.  This pillow front has been complete for about a month, or more.  It was one of those projects I was not looking forward to -- seam ripping the old pillow apart, zippers, stuffing it....yuck!  Guess what?  It took me about 15 min to take the old front off the pillow and replace it with this one!  Do you ever do that?  Put off something you think is worse than it really is? (everyone nods)  Oh, good. I am not only one.  
Big and Little Uptown Jacket Pattern Review.
Make It Perfect has created an adorable spring jacket.  The pattern comes in two versions, Little (0-5 years) and Big (6-10 years).  Overall this pattern was easy to follow with great instructions and sizing.  The jackets turned out fantastic!  

The three jackets....

Purple Dots.  This is the first jacket I created was in size 5 from the Little Uptown Girl Pattern.  The fabric used was a quilting cotton for both layers.  This seemed a bit thin for our weather so I added a layer of flannel to the middle.  This created the perfect weight for the jacket.  LOVE IT.  If you choose to add the flannel, make sure to prewash all layers, since flannel tends to shrink more than quilters cotton.  The size fits my 5-year-old perfectly.  I used a fabric covered button and button hole, suggested in the pattern.  Although it looks cute, I think the button might be a bit tough for my daughter to fasten since it is so large.  

Orange and Blue Dot:  The Orange jacket is a size 10, while the Blue jacket is a size 8.  Although they are not for my kids, they tried them on for size for me.  Yes, my son was a trooper and tried on the Orange jacket!  For both jackets, the outer fabric is a thin corduroy and the inside is once again, quilters cotton.  I love the weight of these jackets as well.  The pattern is designed to create a reversible jacket, but I changed the buttons to magnetic snaps, thus eliminating this feature.  If you choose to do this, add a fusible interfacing to the front panels then add snaps and buttons before sewing the lining and outer fabric together.  
Overall, I am very happy with the results and with the Make it Perfect pattern.   My only disappointment is the Little pattern is available is via download, while the Big pattern is not.   But now that I own both patterns, I am happy to make more!

UPDATE 5/2013:   The Big Uptown pattern is available for download as well.  YEAH!!!  
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With summer approaching, I needed a fun summer bag.  And get this -- it is for ME!!!
This bag as created using decor weight fabric in the chevon pattern for the outside.  The lining is PB&J Mae Basket from Moda.  The zipper.  I love the zipper pocket!  It was a great way to try the welt zipper pocket technique.  
A great tutorial, by ikatbag, for the zippered welt pocket is located here.  Tutorial for the bag is from Very Purple Person.
Chevron Bag @
Chevron bag @
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Grommet Curtain Tutorial

Grommet Rings.  These were purchased at JoAnn Fabrics.  They come in packs of 8 rights, so you will need one package per panel.

Fabric was also purchased at JoAnn Fabrics.


After sewing a 3 inch (or larger) hem in your curtains, accordion style fold your curtains 8 equal times.  One fold for each grommet.


Find the center of the panel and place a stick pin from the bottom to the top.  Next center the template (that comes with the grommets) on the pin.


Trace a circle onto your fabric using the template.


Remove your template from the pin.  Remove one layer of fabric from the pin and place your template back on the pin.  Be sure to only remove one layer of fabric.  This will give you 4 circles on the front of your fabric and 4 on the back. 


Cut each circle out carefully.


There are 16 grommets in the package, two for each hole.


Place the grommet half with the lip on it one one side of the fabric and carefully place the other half on top.  I found it best to use the palm of my hands and snap them together.  



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Yes, I hopped on the Triple Zipper Pouch wagon!  This was a fun pouch to sew and very quick.  Even with the zippers.  Zippers get a bad wrap.  Really, they are not bad at all.  Don't let them scare you.  The fabric I used is a Denyse Schmidt (DS) Quilters collection from JoAnn.  It was actually one yard that had a combo of 4 fat quarter prints on it.  Fantastic! 

To keep the kiddos busy during their Spring Break, we printed off Mr Egg.   It printed on 6 sheets of paper and taped together to make one large poster.   Mr. Printables is a really great blog.  Go check it out.

Look at how hard these kiddos are working on their project.  TOGETHER and QUIETLY!    


Then I go and make the mistake of asking them to smile for the camera.  You can see which one is still sweet and listens to Mom!

Spring break started here in the land of snow and cold.  (Really Wisconsin, you can warm up now!)  My little monsters needed a project, so we created mini monsters.  The idea came from Microcrafts, a fun and creative book.  For the boxes, we used 'string tie' drawer box and cut it on the Silhouette.  The girls love their little baby monsters named Lucy and Milly.
Recently I was cleaning my sewing room (although it does not look like it anymore!) and came across these drawings:
My 8-year-old daughter, Hailey, gave the drawings to me before one of my craft weekends.  She wanted this drawing turned into a real bear.  Great!  I love a good challenge.  I did have to stretch myself a bit.  Balance is how my world works -- you know, a bear ear on the right should be the same as the left...nope, redo!  
I enjoyed making this drawing come to life, and Hailey loves it too.   
This pin cushion is on its way to Australia today!  I really hope it is loved in its new home.

For the makings....I used Six White Horses paper piecing pattern.  Since I needed a pin cushion version, I reduced the image to 20% before printing.   Finished it off with a fabric covered button and filled it with flax seed. 

Swap is hosted at Sweet Little Pretties   Thank you Lisa!
I collected and collected and collected.   The salvages looked pretty neat in my Mason jar upon the shelf until it was full and ready to be transformed into a bag.   I cut two fabric panels and ironed fusible interfacing to the back.  To the front, I started in one corner and sewed on one salvage at a time.  Overlapping the raw edge of the previous salvage and covering up the right side of the fabric, so use a fabric that you look at and wonder what you were thinking when you purchased it!

I added two pockets to the inside and a snap closure.  Where the bag is hanging in the photo is pretty much were it lives.  I like keeping my current project tucked in there.  I know, such a shame that such a bag does not leave the house very often!   It just draws to  much attention at the fabric stores and have to shoo people away.  (or maybe not) 

The desk -- was a makeover project.  One day I took a spray paint can to it, then some sandpaper and, well, there you have it.  I love it.  And it is so sturdy when sewing.   See the scrap quilt on the wall.  That is a work in progress.  Progress is slow -- about two years, maybe three.  I am okay with that for two reasons.  1.  I like looking at it hanging on my sewing room wall.  2.  It has scraps of so many projects I have made  -- and some from friends.  

    About Me...

    Welcome to Carrying Sunshine.  My name is Ann and I will be your host.  Together we shall venture into the crafty world, toss on our shoes for a run, and maybe travel the globe.  Don't be shy, introduce yourself.  I would love to meet you!

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