Somehow I kept my apron clean on Thanksgiving...

My aunt used to make aprons, lots of them.  In fact, aprons have always been kind of a "thing" in my family.  The women all seem to collect them.  My uncle Gary used to have a restaurant and I still have one of his aprons from the restaurant in my kitchen - it's the one I use the most, actually.  That could be because it's brown and it's really hard to make it look dirty.

One of the first sewing patterns I ever bought was for an apron, though I still haven't made that pattern.  I fell in love with this pattern a few months ago online, and knew I had to have it - it's by Sew Liberated and called the Emmeline apron.

I really wanted to make the exact apron in the picture, but alas, it's difficult to find a lot of AMH's Chocolate Lollipop collection these days.  I wound up finding some adorable fabrics from Cosmo Cricket's Early Bird collection and I knew they'd be perfect for an apron.

My mother visited while I was still at work on this apron and overheard me telling a friend that garment sewing was just something I'm not any good at, and my mother tells me that if I could manage to make this apron that I could certainly try my hand at garment sewing.  I think that's what I loved so much about this pattern - it feels like a retro dress in a lot of ways.  Maybe one day I'll try sewing a dress...

Naturally, when the apron was actually on me and in use, no one snapped a picture.  Not that I'm surprised, but if I don't take the picture in my family, no one else will.  I did tell my husband to take a picture of the turkey coming out of the oven, and you can see a little bit of my apron there.

All in all, I really love this apron, though I worry that I will seriously cry when it (inevitably) gets dirty.  Oh well, then I can make another one.  :)

And in case you're curious about how Thanksgiving went, the main event of Thanksgiving wound up not being the turkey, at least not for my munchkin.  From the moment I started making it, the flourless chocolate  was all he could talk about.  He kept talking about smelling it the day before Thanksgiving and as soon as we all sat down to dinner, that's all he could talk about.  He ate every last crumb of it and declared it the best part of Thanksgiving.

*UPDATE * And because curious minds want to's the recipe for my flourless chocolate cake...

Easy Flourless Chocolate Cake

4 oz bittersweet chocolate (I use the brown label Ghiradelli, 60% bittersweet)
1 stick salted butter
3/4 cup sugar
3 large eggs at room temperature
1/2 c cocoa powder

1. Preheat oven to 375.  Prepare an 8" round cake pan by greasing it, lining it with parchment, and greasing the parchment lining.
2. Melt your chocolate and butter in a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of barely simmering water, and stir until smooth.  Or, wait until it's really melty, then stir, making sure it's good and smooth.
3. Remove bowl and whisk sugar into chocolate, making sure it gets fully incorporated.  Add your eggs and whisk well.  (Yes, I know the chocolate is still hot, don't worry about your eggs.)
4. Sift 1/2 cup cocoa powder over your batter, and whisk until just combined, then pour batter into prepared pan. 
5. Bake in the middle of the oven for 25 minutes, until the top has formed a slightly crackled top.  Cool cake in pan on a rack for 10 minutes, then invert onto a serving plate.

You can serve with powdered sugar, sifted over the top of the cake, whipped cream or ice cream.  Or best of all, all of the above!  This cake keeps quite well, at least a week, if kept in an airtight container.

Fabric Tuesday: Origins Table Runner

I love checking things off my To Do list.  I have always been a list person, so much so that I sometimes have lists of lists!  This time of year is my most list-heavy, between planning holiday budgets, gifts, and meals, and it should come as no shock that I'm rocking a pretty hardcore To Sew list for the next two months, with two awesome swaps that I'm involved in as well as a bunch of handmade holiday gifts.  But today, I got to check off another item from two lists - my holiday gift list and my To Sew list.  Yippee!

I used a pattern from P.S. I Quilt, one Rachel so aptly named the Lickety Split table runner.  The pattern comes together super easy, I highly recommend it!

I worked on practicing my outline quilting on this one, that was pretty fun.  I adore the effect that outline quilting gives.  Having used a simple Kona solid for the back, the outline quilting totally stands out and looks really cool on the back.  Here's hoping it's not too modern a look for the recipient.

Stay tuned on Wednesday to see how clogged my sewing desk is becoming!  I've probably got way too many projects in progress at the moment, so it's going to be a lengthy WIP list!  And don't forget to check into what's going on at Fabric Tuesday at QuiltStory, I always love the inspiration I get over there.

Fabric Tuesday: 301 Park Avenue

First off...have you noticed the new look of my blog?  I happened to win a giveaway last week at Lee's beautiful blog, Freshly Pieced, and the big prize was a custom designed blog header.  Talk about lucky!  Isn't it gorgeous?  Thank you so much, Lee, you rock!

I have another completed quilt to show for Fabric Tuesday this week.  Yippee!  And best of all, it's another Christmas gift I can mark completed on my list.  Still a few left to finish, but I'm making good progress.

This quilt is for my in-laws, and I hope this will appeal to their taste.  I've named this quilt 301 Park Avenue, after the iconic Waldorf-Astoria at that address, because that's exactly what this fabric reminds me of.   It's very old-school-New-York to me.

While this was a relatively easy quilt to put together, I still learned a few things...
* 80/20 batting from Jo-Ann's moves super smoothly through my machine, and is a nice, lightweight batting for my Florida quilt recipients.  And it's cheap.  So far, no negatives that I can come up with!
* Sometimes my husband has good quilt taste.  He picked out the binding for this fabric - Kona Cocoa - and I think it looks really nice.  Thanks, honey!
* There's really no such thing as too much painters tape when it comes to taping down the back of your quilt whilst making a quilt sandwich.  Really.
* It's okay to rip stitches out.  It helps to repeat to yourself that a lot when ripping out stubborn stitches that you don't really want to rip out but need to be ripped out all the same.

Don't forget to visit Megan and Heather over at QuiltStory to check out the other entries for Fabric Tuesday this week!  Have a recent fabric finish?  Make sure to join in the sharing fun.

Speaking of sharing, have you checked out the Bloggers Quilt Festival over at Amy's Creative Side yet?  It is so much fun, seeing all of the different quilts displayed there.   Talk about boatloads of inspiration!  I have made so many bookmarks over the last few days.  Definitely make sure to visit if you haven't yet.  I try to make a daily sojourn over there.  Beware, though, you might lose hours of your day over there  :)

A flimsy finish...but a festive one all the same!

This is the first quilt where I really feel like shouting "Ta da!"  I'm so proud of this quilt, my Charming Bento Box quilt, despite how simple it may seem.  I feel like this quilt is so "me."  I think what makes me the most excited about this quilt is the fact that it really doesn't come from a pattern.  This was the first time that I really made up a quilt as a I went.  I was certainly inspired by Film in the Fridge - Ashley's work is just so breathtaking and creative!

I'm still debating how to back this quilt, whether I go with a solid or find a coordinating print from this fabric collection, Kate Spain's 12 Days of Christmas, but I've got time to figure it out.  Since this quilt is staying at my house, I've got plenty of time to finish it up before the holidays!

I am working on writing a tutorial on how to make these blocks, especially since all it takes is a charm pack.  I love charm packs.  They're a great, inexpensive way to find yourself with a wide variety of complementary fabrics.  And they look so cute, to boot!

I'm sharing this almost-finish over at Fabric Tuesday this week. Have you visited Fabric Tuesday yet?  It's a lot of fun, and a great way to find more inspiration, so make sure to stop by QuiltStory.  Happy sewing!