Tuesday, December 28, 2010


I'm going to start posting again!  Look for a new post this week.

Friday, May 7, 2010

new stained glass piece

new stained glass piece, originally uploaded by handmadejoot.

My stained glass studio time ended two weeks ago -- this is my very last piece. Hopefully, in the near future, I will have a studio space I can cover in little shards of dangerous glass. Somewhere, my kids know to beware of - "this mommy's space." I'm going to miss working with glass all the time....

Saturday, April 17, 2010

new projects

Drake went to a birthday party at a - paint your own pottery - shop.  I think the dog he painted looks just like our border collie.

One of my friend's birthday was in March.  She has wanted me to make her a market bag for a while from an original pattern created by me.  I have been making these bags as gifts for about 6 months, and now use my bag as a purse.  I have almost eliminated my need for plastic bags when I go shopping.  It holds so much stuff and I think my bag is really stylish.  The bag I made for myself uses completely different fabrics, I'll post pictures of it one day soon.

Last summer, I was walking a couple of Jack Russell Terriers when I spotted a table of free items in someones front yard.   It appeared that the person disposing of all the free items had traveled all over the world and found all kinds of neat knickknacks that didn't look so great in their living room in America.  I got two glass bottles from Spain, a puppet from Mexico, a throw pillow cover from China, and this whale from ?.  I have always liked the drawings of killer whales from the Pacific Northwest tribes.   I have begun painting this whale in that manner. 

the very beginning of a tribal whale using oil paint

 the inspiration for my whale

Thanks for reading!

stained glass owl

stained glass owl, originally uploaded by handmadejoot.

I finished my stained glass owl from this post http://jootjoot.blogspot.com/2010/02/my-week-in-pictures.html

I hope the birds at my feeder aren't afraid of him!

Friday, April 9, 2010

New Font

I was looking on www.searchfreefonts.com and came across one I really liked. I think I could use this one on a t-shirt or even a gardening poster.  Maybe something for a child's room....  The font is called 101 my yard.  If you have any questions about how to install the fonts on your computer, just ask me. 

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

live nesting owl camera with baby owlets


If you have time, watch this.  It's very soothing and cute.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Nice Things To Do

--listen to the birds
--drink coffee and read a book

--sew hexagons for a quilt -- it will take me approximately 3 years to sew enough!
--cook a long, vegetarian complicated meal with fresh bread
--listen my kids tell stories about their dreams
--meet new people
--watch lots of Jon Stewart clips
--sit outside in the sun with my eyes closed

--talk to my husband about politics (watch any Michael Moore movie)
--cut stained glass for a new project
--plant seedlings in warm, moist soil
--cuddle with a pet
--sit by a river

Saturday, March 13, 2010

More circle quilt blocks

Today I made a couple more circle quilt blocks. I fussy cut an owl block then made the block using this tutorial.  I, also, finally made a block out of an embroidered worm I made a while back.


Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Spring Break!

Today we are off to see the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. It will be great to be outside for a bit spending time with my two little boys.

Friday, March 5, 2010


It seems like I have had the flu forever!  I'm slowly starting to creep out of the funk...  In the meantime, I've been trying to take 30 minutes a day to sketch something new.  Ideally, I would like to complete my still life sketch (required in all art portfolios for entering school) within the next two weeks.  I keep on putting off the still life sketch -- it sounds so boring!  These are my first 3 sketches.....



-- have a nice day!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

My dog

Ummm, how cute is my dog?
She's a very pretty border collie mix who just finished a bath.

One block wonder quilts

Since I am moving across the country in 3 months, buying books, fabrics, or anything really is not going to be very wise.  I can still dream of buying fabric and books and starting a new beautiful quilt.  Maybe in my next house I will actually have a studio space instead of dragging my sewing machine around my house so I have room to sew.  This is the book I am dreaming about right now. 
The quilts: (from flickr)

Mary's One Block Wonder

Kaleioflower by Cindy Wilson

Marie's Quilt

WOW!!!  I am dreaming of making one of these!  The one block wonder is made from a single piece of fabric!  Let me say that again - you only have to buy one piece of fabric to make these quilts.  I couldn't believe it.  I guess there is a lot of waste fabric because of how you have to cut the fabric, but from the looks of it, it is completely worth it.  Plus, I always need new fabric for my stash!   I finished my paintbox quilt this week -- I really need to take some pictures of it now.  I, also, made two stained glass stars.  I must take pictures!!!!!

Friday, February 12, 2010

My week in pictures

thrift store find 

 lots of snow - the kids were home from school

 finished my quilt top

the pieces for the back of the quilt

I've been wanting to try string quilting so I made a change purse

 the inside of the change purse
my stained glass piece I need to solder

Tutorial: a technique for circle quilt blocks (non-applique)


The materials you need are shown below; a rotary cutter, ruler, and cutting mat would also come in handy.  The square on the right was made with this tutorial.

Glue stick, scissor, paper, fabric, circle template.  Choose two contrasting fabrics for this project.  I prefer card stock paper so it can be re-used, but normal weight paper would work as well. 

1.  Cut your paper and your background fabric the same size - I chose to make 7" squares for both.

2.  Trace a circle on your paper.  Center your circle as much as possible.  Cut out the circle.
3.  Put a dab of glue at each corner of your paper.  Sorry about the horrible picture.

4.  Place your fabric on the paper (right side up) and pin at each corner.  The glue and the pins should hold it in place.

5.  Cut out the interior of your circle leaving at least 1/2" from the edge of your fabric to the edge of the paper.  It should look like this.  Don't worry about making it perfect - it really doesn't mattter.


6.   Cut into your fabric all the way around the circle as shown above.  Leave about 1/8" - 1/4" between your fabric and paper.   Along the dotted line rub the glue stick very sparingly.  Mostly just dotting in places.  You'll understand this better in the next step.

7.  Now iron the cut edges back along the paper.  You are looking at the paper and the backside of your fabric.  

9.  Remove the paper.  This is the reason you wanted to glue along the edge as sparingly as possible.  Once the paper is removed, iron the little tabs of fabric back down.


10.  Cut out the fabric for your circle (the white fabric).  Make it another 7" square - it doesn't need to be perfect since you are going to be removing a bit of it later.

11.  First pin the fabrics together. Make a sandwich; on the bottom is your circle fabric (the white) right side up, and then your background fabric (the sand dollars) on top of it with its right side up - it should look like the picture in step 10, except the white is now cut into a 7" square. Now sew along the edge of your circle - the sewing foot should be on the background fabric - 1/4" from the circle's outer edge.  You are sewing your square right side up when you are doing this step.

12.  Flip your square over.  Cut away your circle (the white) fabric - leaving about 1/2" of fabric.  

  All done!  Perfect circles every time.

I made this fish with the method above.  I hope you found this tutorial use-able.  Please comment with any questions you have.  Thanks for looking!  martha 

This is linked to:


Make it Yours @ My Backyard Eden


Wednesday, February 10, 2010

books and blogs

Sometimes it is so hard to find a good book!  I will read my way through every author and go through these time periods of having nothing to capture my mind during a cup of coffee.  I will carouse the internet with a hot cup of coffee, but it isn't the same.. Lately I've found myself reading Mothering Nature, a blog about a widowed mother and her life since she lost her husband Jeff.  She has captured my heart with her beautiful writing and I have found myself crying more than once reading her blog.  I also read http://www.stillafamily.net/; another blog written by a widow.  Since I've been reading both of these blogs, I have appreciated my marriage and my husband more.  I have gone through times when I don't appreciate him enough, but these two mothers have made me realize it doesn't matter when he tracks mud through the house, leaves crumbs on the counter top, shaves his mustache into the sink, or doesn't vacuum.  Such small tedious things when I am reminded how I still have him to love and can call him to change the sheets when the boys have thrown up, or wipe the bum when I don't want to. 
Since this post is called books and blogs, you must be wondering about the book part.  Right?  (ha, ha).  Surprise, surprise the book I am reading is also about a widow and her two young children.  I am only 90 pages in, but I haven't been able to stop thinking about the story and find myself wanting to drink more coffee and tea so I can sit down and read it.  It's called Shelter Me by Juliette Fay; I found it in the new book section of my library.