Monday, November 2, 2015

Post-Surgery and Feeling Like Myself Again

I'm back!

Some of you may know that I've had a bit of a rough year with regards to my health. I don't think any of you know it was bad enough for me to undergo the knife a few weeks back. Without going into too many details, I will say that most days I was in a lot of pain. It took the better part of a year and nearly a dozen doctors to finally come to conclusion that I needed to have surgery. That was not the solution I was hoping for and honestly, I was a bit depressed about things pre-surgery. But I took a deep breath and went ahead with the surgery knowing it was for the best.

Then came the recovery. The first few weeks were really hazy because I was high as a kite on pain meds. Then came a few weeks where I could shuffle-walk around but I was still on doctor's orders to take it easy. I wasn't able to do much of anything. Sitting upright was too difficult which meant I couldn't spend time on the computer or at the sewing machine; and I was feeling so bad that I didn't even crochet or do any sort of hand-work. It was like there was a craft embargo in place.

I'm feeling better though. The last two weeks I have made great strides. I can do the dishes and laundry again, much to the relief of Mr.123quilt. Those chores are hard! *wink* I can even sit at a computer long enough to write a blog post! That's huge for me and I'm feeling very accomplished. Lol! I'm hoping to start physical therapy very soon. *fingers crossed*

I guess the point of all this is to say that I'm back from the far side of the moon. Radio silence on the blog has been broken. I won't be busting out a completed king-size quilt this week or anything like that. No. I'll be taking it slow.

Until next time,
- Sarah

Monday, August 31, 2015

Fabri-Quilt New Block Blog Hop! Introducing Poseidon's Hall!

Welcome to Day Two of the 2015 Fabri-Quilt New Block Blog Hop!

2015 Fabri-Quilt New Block Blog Hop

I am so excited to be part of this wonderful blog hop sponsored by Fabri-Quilt and Inspired by Fabric and hosted by Yvonne of Quilting Jetgirl, Cheryl of Meadow Mist Designs, Stephanie of Late Night Quilter, and Teri Ann of Childlike Fascination. Over 60 bloggers are designing a new quilt block using the same Fat Eighth (F8) bundle of Prairie Cloth Cotton solids from Fabri-Quilt. So in just 4 days you get to see more than 60 new designs. How cool is that?! 

Fabri-Quilt graciously provided all the bloggers with a F8 bundle of Prairie Cloth Cotton solids that was curated just for this blog hop. The bundle has six fabrics - Chartreuse, Turquoise, Coral, Aqua, Lapis Blue, and White.

This bundle is being called "Watermelon Summer." I love watermelon and I love summer. So there you go! 

The only requirements for the blog hop were that the blocks must be 12 1/2" x 12 1/2" (unfinished) and that they had to use at least 3 of the 6 fabrics in the bundle. 

That being said, I present to you....

Poseidon’s Hall

A Quilt Block By: Sarah Smith from

Featured in the 2015 Fabri-Quilt New Block Blog Hop

General Notes:

·         Poseidon’s Hall is a 12” x 12" finished (12 ½” x 12 1/2" unfinished) quilt block. The block is made up of three units (Unit 1, Unit 2, and Unit 3).
·         This block is made using Half-Square-Triangles (HST’s) and squares. The pattern uses the “2 at a time” method for making the HST’s.
·         ¼” seams are used throughout the construction of this block.

Materials Required:

·         1 – F8 (fat eighth) yard each, Fabri-Quilt Prairie Cloth Cotton Solid fabric in Lapis Blue, Chartreuse, Turquoise, Aqua, and White.
·         Basic sewing supplies (sewing machine, thread, scissors, cutting mat, ruler, rotary cutter, marking pen or pencil, etc.).
·         NOTE: A ruler with a 45° angle is needed for squaring up HST’s.

Cutting Instructions:

     From Lapis Blue:                   
          Cut 6 – 3” x 3” squares

     From Chartreuse:
          Cut 2 – 3” x 3” squares

     From Turquoise:
          Cut 4 – 3” x 3” squares
     From Aqua:
          Cut 1 – 4 ½” x 4 ½” square

     From White:
          Cut 8 – 2 ½” x 2 ½” squares
          Cut 12 – 3” x 3” squares

Half Square Triangle Assembly:

     Step 1:
Using a marking pen or pencil, draw a diagonal line on the wrong side of 12 white squares (3” x 3”).

     Step 2:
Pair a white square (3” x 3”) with each of the color squares (3” x 3”) right sides together for a total of 12 pairs.

     Step 3:
With the marked white square on top, sew ¼” away from the marked line on both sides.

Tip: Chain piece the fabric pairs for fast assembly.

Step 4:
Using scissors or a ruler and rotary cutter, cut the sewn pairs along the marked line and press the seams (either open or to the side) to reveal the HST block (24 total).

     Step 5:
Trim each HST block to 2 ½” x 2 ½”. Line up the 45° angle line on the ruler with the center line on the HST blocks to ensure accuracy when trimming.

Unit Assembly:

Unit 1
     Step 1:
Using 2 white squares (2 ½” x 2 ½”), 1 Lapis Blue HST, and 1 Chartreuse HST, assemble Unit 1 according to the picture.

     Step 2:
          Repeat 3 times for a total of 4 units.

Unit 2
     Step 1:
Using 2 Lapis Blue HST’s and 2 Turquoise HST’s, assemble Unit 2 according to the picture.

     Step 2:
          Repeat 3 times for a total of 4 units.

Unit 3
     Step 1:
          Unit 3 is the Aqua square (4 ½” x 4 ½”). Nothing to do here. Hooray!

Block Assembly:

     Step 1:
          Assemble the units as shown in the picture below.

     Step 2:
          Square up the block to 12 ½” x 12 ½”.

There you have it. One Poseidon’s Hall block.

I really hope you enjoyed this tutorial. Don’t forget to check out all the other amazing blocks debuting this week. You can find them by clicking on the button link at the top of this post or by clicking on the host links below.

Monday - 8/31 - Yvonne at Quilting Jetgirl

Tuesday - 9/1 - Cheryl at Meadow Mist Designs

Wednesday - 9/2 - Stephanie at Late Night Quilter

Thursday - 9/3 - Teri Ann at Childlike Fascination

Also, be sure to enter the giveaways! Fabri-Quilt will be giving away some half yard bundles of "Watermelon Summer." You can enter to win twice each day of the blog hop, once on the host of the day's blog and once on Inspired by Fabric. That's 8 chances to win! The giveaway is open through Friday, September 4th, at 11:59 pm (EST). Good Luck!

- Sarah

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Sunday Stash: Dear Stella - Sunday Morning

Sometimes you see a pattern and you know exactly what fabric you want to use. Sometimes you just have a general idea. I know you know what I'm talking about.

Last month I won a giveaway of the Sea Star pattern by Meadow Mist Designs. (Big thanks to The Carpenter's Daughter Who Quilts and Meadow Mist Designs!) When I first saw the pattern I immediately thought of some purple-ish, watercolor-ish fabric I had seen a while back. I know, right? Great description of a fabric collection. Good luck finding it again. After a bit of searching I found this fabric.

This collection is called Sunday Morning by Dear Stella. I have no idea if it's the fabric I originally saw a few months ago but it's EXACTLY what I wanted for the Sea Star pattern. This fabric is not in my general aesthetic. It's not anything I would usually pick out. But oh how I love it!

I've been doing a lot of rainbow-y, color-wheel stuff lately and I'm excited to work on something that isn't basically ROYGBIV. Don't get me wrong, I love a good rainbow and there are still few more uber-colorful projects on the way.

Rather than believe I'm stuck in a color rut, I prefer to think I'm going through an artistic period. Like Picasso's "Blue Period." Yeah, really... that's what this is... :)


Linking up with Sunday Stash by Molli Sparkles

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

A New Baby Quilt for a New Baby!

I think I mentioned in my last post that I have a new niece! A new baby in the family means a new baby quilt is in order. Naturally.

This came together pretty fast. Which is a good thing because it needs to be done by Monday! As you can see I still need to sew my rows together. I'm hoping to do that as well as baste it this afternoon. I am not looking forward to basting because my back is still whack. This quilt is so small though that it shouldn't be too bad. It should end up about 30" x 40". 

I think this will turn out to be a pretty sweet baby blanket for a little girl. I hope she likes it.

This quilt needs a name. Any suggestions?

- Sarah


Linking up with:

Hug-a-Bit Quilts Cooking Up Quilts Sew Cute Tuesday Sew Fresh Quilts WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Playing Catch-Up... (With a Side of French Fries)

I've been MIA lately. I have a good reason though, I swear. When your family calls you up and begs you to go on an impromptu family vacation to SoCal and Disneyland, you drop everything and hop on a cross country flight. Right? So, yeah, this is where I've been.

If you know me, you know the beach is my happy place. After building a few sandcastles, lounging around, and squishing sand between my toes, I feel renewed and re-energized. Which is a good thing because I have a massive to-do list!

  • Make a baby quilt for my newest niece! (Yes, there has been a new, sweet addition to the family!)

  • Catch up on the 2015 New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop. Check out the list of this week's bloggers here.
2015 New Quilt Bloggers Group

  • Work on some secret sewing for the end of September.

  • Write up a new Sunday Stash post because (lo and behold!) I actually bought some new fabric!

  • Sew up a gagillion curves for a Drunkard's Path quilt I've been working on.

  • Write up a tutorial for another new quilt I'm working on.

I also have a ton of other, non-pressing, sewing/quilting/blogging things to do. Priorities though, right? Oh yeah, there's also all my regular life things that need to get done... dentist appointment, grocery shopping, laundry, going to the DMV, washing the car...

I think I need another vacation. Lol!

- Sarah

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

One Lovely Blog Award

Well, I am getting back into the swing of things after having a lovely "stay"cation with Mr. 123quilt last week. We stayed up late, we slept in, we ate fancy brunches. It was good. Plus, now I don't have my annual sunburn from the beach. So there's that.

Even though I wasn't terribly active online last week it turned out to be a productive and exciting quilting/blogging week. I have two new secret sewing projects and some more pattern reviews/testing on the to-do list. I want to share more details, I really do, but you'll have to wait! What I can tell you is... I was nominated for the One Lovely Blog Award!

When I saw that Cheryl of Meadow Mist Designs nominated me, I squealed like a pre-teen girl at a Justin Bieber concert. (Is he still popular?) Then I walked around with a dopey smile on my face for the rest of the day. Seriously though, I'm honored. Cheryl is a awesome pattern designer, a fantastic blogger, and a wonderful mentor. She is one of the leaders of the 2015 New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop and my New Bees Hive leader.  

2015 New Quilt Bloggers Group   New Bees Hive Page

Perhaps you've seen the One Lovely Blog Award popping up around blogland. I know I've seen a few. The idea is to introduce your readers to blogs you love but they may not know about. It's a great opportunity to discover new blogs and make new friends. 

The Rules:

1. Acknowledge the lovely person who nominated you and provide a link to their site.
2. Share 7 random, funny, or little known facts about you. 
3. Nominate 10 blogs for the award. This isn't a hard-and-fast rule. You can nominate more. You can nominate less. Whatever moves you.


Seven Things You Might Not Know About Me

1. Growing up my favorite color was red. I wanted red everything and you better believe I was the red piece in any board game I played, except Monopoly for obvious reasons. Somewhere between growing up and "taking a left turn at Albuquerque," my favorite color changed to green. It's still green but for some reason I gravitate toward teals and yellows in my quilting. Oh, and I love colors that are named after foods (e.g. mustard, eggplant, cheddar, etc.). How could you not love that?

2. I love trivia. Trivial Pursuit doesn't have a red pie so I had to settle for the pink piece. As a kid I used to read the cards for fun and because nobody ever wanted to play. I learned a lot though; like the fact that Alan Shepard hit the first golf ball on the moon. That was also a recent question on Jeopardy. Which, incidentally, I watch every day; cause, you know, I love trivia.

3. I also read every day. I love that books can take you on a fantastic voyage all from the comfort of your home and your yoga pants. Currently I'm re-reading the Stephanie Plum novels. They are quick, fun reads and my go to when I want something, I don't know, light and fluffy? My favorite genres are historical fiction, mystery, biographies, sci-fi/fantasy... I'm a little embarrassed to admit that I also read a good deal of YA (young adult) fiction.

4. I love the beach. It's my favorite place and I'd live there if I could. I can spend hours walking up and down the beach looking for beach junk. Maybe this is why I get that annual sunburn. Every few months or so I try to convince Mr. 123quilt that we should buy a house in the Outer Banks and that his commute to work wouldn't be too bad. I don't think it's working. Someday though, I will live right on the ocean.

5. Another fun thing to do on the beach is lounge around and do logic puzzles. I love solving puzzles and problems. I particularly enjoy Japanese logic number puzzles. The current favorites are Extreme 16-grid Sudoku, Kakuro, Futoshiki, and Tsunami. Just to be clear tsunami puzzles on the beach = fun; tsunamis on the beach = disaster.

6.  With every quilting finish I quote Hannibal from the A-team. "I love it when a plan comes together." Every. Stinking. Time.

7. Lastly, I really enjoy baking. Or maybe dessert is my favorite meal. One of the two. Cake is known as the "C-word' in my house. I've taken a few culinary courses but nothing serious because, let's face it, my waistline can't handle it. I'd eat everything! I enjoy caking, cookie decorating, and baking in general. Also, I'm constantly on the lookout for a good butter cream recipe. If you have one let me know!

Here is a mosaic of some of my cakes because it doesn't feel right to have a post without a picture.

Clockwise from top left: chocolate kahlua sabayon, carrot cake with marzipan carrots, bananas foster and chocolate mousse sponge, playing with fondant, strawberry lemonade with fresh strawberry chantilly cream filling. 

Okay, now I want some cake and all I have on hand is a pop-tart. Dang. Moving on.


I follow a lot of great blogs. A lot! So many that I don't have a blogroll on my sidebar because the list would just drag on and on and on. Can you see my dilemma yet? How am I supposed to narrow it down to just 10 nominees? Well, I spent a lot of time going through my list and eliminating people who have already received the award. It helped but not enough. My list was still pretty hefty. So, I went with the time-honored tradition of picking names out of a hat. 

In no particular order, here are the nominees:

Sarah @ Saroy 
Anja @ Anja Quilts
Felicity @ Felicity Quilts
Ashley @ Crafty Ashley B

and lastly... Sweet Sugar Belle 
(a cookie blog that I can read for hours on end)

Please take the time to look at some or all of these blogs. You won't be disappointed!

Monday, June 22, 2015

2015 New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop - Week 2!

It's Week 2 of the 2015 New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop!

2015 New Quilt Bloggers Group

My hive, the New Bees Hive, has a new lineup of posters today!

New Bees Hive Page

Cristy @ I Love You Sew
Patty @ Walnut Street Quilts
Sarah @ Sarah Goer Quilts
Eileen @ Eileen in Stitches

Don't forget to check out all the other blog hoppers this week! You can find their links here.

I have really enjoyed reading about these new bloggers and I think you will too. So far I've been able to find a small connection with everyone, be it a favorite book or a similar taste in aesthetic.

I want to give a shout out to the blog hop hosts: Yvonne at Quilting Jet Girl, Stephanie at Late Night Quilter, Cheryl at Meadow Mist Designs, and Teri Ann at Childlike Fascination. These ladies are incredibly knowledgeable and helpful! Thank you!

Also, check out the hosts' blogs for a giveaway! Yes, I said giveaway. Run, don't walk!

Sunday, June 14, 2015

2015 New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop!

Hello and welcome to the first week of the 2015 New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop!

2015 New Quilt Bloggers Group

If you’re new to my blog, let me introduce myself. My name is Sarah and I’m an easy-going, glass is half full, whatever floats your boat kind of person; and I find it incredibly difficult to write these types of “intro” posts. They always make me feel self-serving or like I’m at an addict meeting. To be fair though, I probably SHOULD be at a Quilt and Fabric Addicts Anonymous meeting. (Shouldn’t we all???) (I want ALL the fabric!) So here are the bare bones, nitty-gritty facts: I’m in my early thirties, I live with an amazing man (no kids…yet), and I’m a stay-at-homer currently from North Carolina, USA.

I think I learned to sew when I was 6, 7, or 8ish years old. I can distinctly remember my mom teaching me how to thread her old JC Penny sewing machine, which is odd because that’s the only time I ever remember her using it. So I learned that much at least from my mother. I made up the rest as I went along. As a kid I was constantly crafting: sewing doll clothes, weaving loop potholders on that plastic loom thingamajig, pretty-punch (does anyone even remember that?!), cross-stitching, crocheting, latch hook (anyone?), etc. You get the point.

The Old Workhorse

It wasn’t until my teenage years that attempted my first quilt. I do not come from a crafty family so this attempt was met with a few sideways glances but I went to the store, got some fabric, and began a love affair.

My First Quilt

Since then, I quilted on and off until about 2010 when I started getting really serious about it. I had two new nephews on the way and naturally they needed baby blankets. I really think that baby quilts need to come with a warning: “This is a gateway quilt into a life full of fabric and sewing addiction!” Ha! I didn’t document many of the things I made pre-blog but here is a small sampling of some pics I rustled up.

Pre-blog Work

Those were all things quilted for other people. Right now I’m really focused on quilting for myself and I think my more recent projects show my quilting style a little better.

Like this mini I recently made. LOVE IT! Blogged about here and here.

Simple Celestial Mini
Simple Celestial Mini

Here is my most recent top in all its bright and cheery glory. I can’t wait to start some FMQ on this one! Blogged here.

Reverse Irish Chain

My Xbox and Botox quilt is also waiting for some FMQ love. It’s on the never-ending to-do list. Blogged here and here.

Xbox and Botox

In the spirit of the 2015 New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop I thought I share a few tips with you!


Have you ever wondered how to add those great html grab code boxes under one of your buttons? Oh, you have? Me too! Check out my blog button on the sidebar to see an example of a grab code box. I tried a few different ways and found an easy way to do it. If you’re familiar with adding a button to your side bar you should have no problem adding a grab code box. All we are going to do is add some <textarea> code. This will add the box and then whatever you want in the box is placed between the <textarea> elements. Trust me, you can do this.

Step 1: Add the html for your button like you normally would.

Step 2: Then add this. <textarea rows=”3” cols=”20”><YOUR BUTTON HTML CODE></textarea>

Step 3: IMPORTANT!!! You have to change the < and the > in YOUR BUTTON CODE to its alphanumeric equivalent or this won’t work. What that means is every < in YOUR BUTTON CODE ONLY needs to be changed to &lt; and every > to &gt; for example:

<textarea rows=”3” cols=”20”>&lt;YOUR BUTTON HTML CODE&gt;</textarea>

NOTE: most button links have four < or > to change.

Also, you can change the width of the grab code box by changing the cols=”XX” number. Have fun and play around!

I really hope that made sense, if not just send me a message and I’ll help you through it!


This is a much easier tip, I promise. If you are like me and don’t have space for a permanent design wall, you can use a temporary one. Here is a picture of mine.

Reverse Irish Chain up on the design wall

I hang up some batting with pant hangers hung over the door frame. That’s, um, that’s the door to my bathroom… my only bathroom. So my design walls have to be really temporary; as in they can’t stay up for more than an afternoon! I need a way to keep individual block components together after I figure out where they go on the wall. My solution, and my quilting tip, is to (carefully and in a very organized fashion) transfer each block and it’s components to blank pages. Each block gets its own page and all the pages stay in a particular order. This method helped tremendously on my last quilt.

Each block with its own sheet

I have to admit that while I enjoy all the parts of the quilting process, except basting (who likes basting?! Seriously?) my favorite part of the process is the initial design phase. I’m a nerd and I love the math. There, I said it. If you ever catch me staring off into space, odds are I’m doing some calculations in my head. I always keep a notebook and graph paper handy so I can write down my designs as I’m inspired. Guilty confession: I have over 150 quilts/quilt ideas on my quilty bucket list. (I hope they have donuts at the Quilt and Fabric Addict meetings).

So I have two questions for you! What is your favorite part of the process and how many projects are on your bucket list?


Favorite Movie: Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure (because I like History, lol)
Favorite TV Show: Jeopardy
Favorite Food: Birthday Cake
Favorite Animal: Elephant
Favorite Book: … IDK, I read them all! Currently re-reading the Stephanie Plum books.

Thanks so much for stopping by my blog today! Please hop over to some of the other blogs in the 2015 New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop. I’m in the New Bees Hive and here are the links to some of the New Bees who have posted today!

Ashley @ Crafty Ashley B
Gayle @ PedalSewLightly
Hayley @ MooBirdStitches

New Bees Hive Page

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

WIP Wednesday - Reverse Irish Chain

It’s been a busy week over here, what with the 2015 New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop and all, but I did manage to find some time to work on my current WIP.

As you can see, I still have some ironing to do.

This fun little project is a pattern I call “Reverse Irish Chain” because, well, that’s what it is. The print fabric and the background fabric are inverted from a traditional Irish Chain. I started with this gorgeous fat quarter bundle of Utopia by Frances Newcombe. The colors are so rich and bright.

After I stared at the fabric for a while, and petted it for a little while more, I cut into it and put it up on my temporary design wall. I’m usually one for a “design bed” or a “design floor” but on special occasions I like to pull out the big guns and hang up some batting; cause I’m fancy like that.

It was pretty much standard Irish Chain patchwork from there; large squares and 9-patches, over and over.

I have a few more rows to add and I’m hoping I’ll have a finished top by Friday. I already have a few ideas for how I’m going to quilt this one.

That’s all for now!

Linking up with Freshly Pieced’s WIP Wednesday
WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Sew Fresh Quilts

Saturday, June 6, 2015

How to add Tabs to Your Menu Bar in Blogger

This was probably the most frustrating thing for me to figure out when I first started my blog. It's actually really easy. So without further ado –


In your Blogger Dashboard go to the Overview Screen and click on the “Pages” link on the left side of the screen.


Your Pages Screen should now be up. Click the “New Page” button. IMPORTANT: Don't click the little "Compose/pencil" button at the top of the screen; this will create a "Post" not a "Page."


The screen for creating a Page looks a lot like the screen for creating a Post. IMPORTANT: Give the Page the title that you want to see as a Tab in your menu bar. When you are finished writing up the body of the Page, hit “Publish.”


You should now be back at the Pages Screen and your new Page should be listed. Now click the “Layout” link on the left side of the screen.


Now you should see the screen for your blog layout. Click the “Add a Gadget” in the horizontal space below the Header.


A Gadget menu will pop up. Scroll down until you see the option for “Pages” and then click on the plus sign.


A Configure Page List will pop up. You should see a list of the Page/s you created earlier. Check all that you want to have shown as Tabs in your menu bar. NOTE: I leave the title blank because I don’t think a menu bar really needs a title. Click “Save.”


After you click save you will see your Layout screen again. You will now see a horizontal “Pages” box where the “Add a Gadget” box used to be. IMPORTANT: At this point make sure that you click the “Save Arrangement” button! I have forgotten this step before and lost a lot of work, yikes!


View your blog and see your beautiful new Menu Bar!!!!!

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial! If you are still stuck or if you have any other tech questions, please let me know!