June Update - New Porch

It’s been nearly 6 months since my last post.  I guess you could say I’m officially over the regular blog update thingie,  but I intend to keep it as I know once we start traveling in the motorhome I will want to document our trips.   

We’ve been pretty busy the last 6 months planning and managing the construction of our screened-in porch. Something we have always wanted and decided to get it done this year.  After this is complete we will add some landscape beds on each side and then I believe everything we wanted in our forever home will be complete.  Until I change something. But I haven’t had a desire to do much of that.  Yet.  GRIN

The Plan



Early on in the design process we discovered a property setback issue.  Most other homes in our community are able to build a pretty large rectangle porch - usually 15 x 14-18’ deep.  Unfortunately, our home was built so close to the setback line we had to add a 45 degree angled wall @ 8’ and then were only able to go out a few feet more.  Not even getting close to 14’.  :-(

Once we discovered this problem we decided that room alone was not big enough so we bit the bullet and created a second room along the back of the sunroom.  Initially we thought we’d just do about 7-8’ deep on the bigger room - large enough for a swing and some rocking chairs - unscreened, but covered.  Sort of like the front porch we had in NC.  But then we decided to go as deep as we could and enclose everything.  It was such a large project and we had the right builder so we didn’t want to have second thoughts wishing we had gone deeper when it was all done.  

Here are a few construction pictures and some interior pictures shortly after we moved in some furniture. Gutter installation and general cleanup outside will be done later this week. But landscaping will not occur until September. 


We decided to go with a travertine floor and installing it was a massive under taking.  Or I should say the prep to laying it was massive.  They moved 10 tons of rock to the backyard with a skid steer loader and buku trips with their wheel barrows.  

The rock was then compacted and then they added a layer of sand.  Three guys got this all done in 2 days. It was amazing.  


The painters then did their thing - inside and out.  

This is Palladian Blue by Benjamin Moore.  Same color as my kitchen.  I need to get another picture of the finished ceiling.  

We moved in the furniture last weekend.   In the smaller room the furniture is facing the house - it just made more sense as there are a lot of doorways in this room so we plan to use it in the morning to watch TV.   It will sit on a piece of furniture in front of the house windows.   

I had a short wall added inside to provide separation between the rooms and a place for some furniture for each room.   I picked up the hutch in the picture below @ a local antique store for $140.  It was already painted in a chipped, distressed look.  I wish it was about 10” taller overall, but I’m not completely unhappy with it.  It’s hard to find something that’s not too deep to fit on a wall that’s only 35” wide, so I consider myself pretty lucky.  


And I have found 3 other aantique pieces.  The rocker, the step stool, and in the big room a cricket table.  My goal was to accomplish an interior look so I stayed away from metal patio furniture, however, the seating is weathered wicker with Sunbrella cushions - from Erwin and Sons.   Everything else will likely be wood of some kind.  I realize that’s a risk, but I plan to add polyurethane to some pieces and oil to others. And the reason is - a former antique dealer up the street from me suggested I oil the rocker — she says that will repel the water and better for the wood.  Hmm.  So I will give that a try.  

Eventually I will add in some pillows, quilts, rugs, accessories, and potted plants to give it more color and a homey look. And then we need to decide on a small dining table and chairs for the other side in the big room. But for now we are just enjoying it.  It will be heavenly come fall when all those trees in the ravine in front of us turn shades of red and orange.  Probably a little chilly on some days, but I have a lot of quilts to keep us warm.  



2013 Projects

It’s that time of year where I summarize the sewing projects I finished last year.  A variety of projects completed for my family and our new home. 

Not pictured in the collage are the fabric projects I completed for my sister’s laundry room (Just blogged about below).  One project I did finish, but never blogged about was the basket quilt which was a gift  for my other sister.  I finished it shortly after Christmas, but did not ship it to her until after New Years as I figured it would get hung up somewhere due to the UPS snafu.

A couple of firsts this year …

Mitering -  I had to miter the Civil War quilt or I felt I had too because I used a stripe for one of the borders.  It just seemed all wrong to not do it after spending so much time making all the blocks and I’m really pleased with the results.  I read everything I could about mitering before I started and found the best advice was to use glue to secure the seams and pattern matching before sewing.  I also cut the stripe border about 1” wider than I needed so that I had enough fabric to square it up after I finished.  

Label - It seems criminal I have never labeled any of my quilts til my sister’s basket quilt.  :-(   Oh well, maybe I can change that going forward.  Here’s how I did it. 

  • Added stabilizer (Pellon) to the fabric I wanted to use
  • Pressed freezer paper to the back of this and then trimmed it to 8.5 x 11  
  • Created the label text in Microsoft Word using a desired font and found the curly cue heart in one of the symbol/miscellaneous fonts.  Check those out some cute little symbols to consider
  • Then I followed this gal’s tutorial to attach the label 

Fancy Packaging / Washing Instructions -   After I saw this video by Kim of The Fat Quarter Shop I knew I wanted to do something unique to package this quilt.  A crate would be way too big for this quilt, but lucky me I found some wire baskets at the Home Good store.  They had several of these on the shelf — I should have grabbed a few more for future gifts, but did not.   Geez - they were only $10.   I  bought a couple of ribbons at Jo Ann’s that matched the colors of the quilt to add a pretty bow. 

I added a box of color catchers (it’s inside the quilt) and paper clipped washing instructions on the fold just above the bow (not shown in pic).  I’ve never had a quilt bleed before and chances are this quilt will not either, but it’s good to pass along the  tips.  

  • Gentle wash - cold water
  • Add 1/2 cup vinegar (to prevent bleeding)
  • Add 1 sheet of color catchers to washer (in case it does bleed)
  • Gentle dry 

Nan's Basket Quilt Label

This was quilted on a Gammill Statler Stitcher by my LAQer using the panto called Gala Vine by Anne Bright.  She also quilted my Civil War quilt and on that one I picked Celtic Vine also by Anne Bright.  You can see a bigger version of that and the other projects by clicking the links below — it will take you to my Flickr albums. 

Onto 2014 projects… the first one will be another gift quilt and I may have to use a crate for that one.  :-).  


1. Nan’s Basket Quilt Wrapped, 2. Beck’s Quilted Drapes, 3. Becks Room After Bed, 4. Beck’s Gingham Bedskirt, 5. Sewing Bath Wreath, 6. Sewing Bath, 7. Double Takes II Pillow, 8. Swoon Inspired Pillow, 9. Nan’s Basket Quilt 1, 10. Nan’s Basket Quilt 2, 11. Nan’s Basket quilt wrapped 2, 12. CW Quilting Closeup, 13. Mitered Corner