From My Carolina Home

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Halloween Breakfast

We are going to have some fun today, the car club is having a costume drive.  Before we leave, we are having a Halloween breakfast to set the right mood for the morning.  I set the table with some fun Halloween things, starting with a wall hanging that I am using as a table topper.  It is a simple panel of Halloween fun to which I added borders, then quilted.  The jack-o-lantern on the corner is a wool applique.

Halloween breakfast - 6

I used the green placemats with black plates.  DH likes cereal, so I topped off the setting with my pumpkin bowls.

Halloween breakfast - 3

The table decorations include a cute Halloween basket with a scarecrow, filled with fall leaves and silk flowers in fall colors. A ceramic jack-o-lantern smiles at us on the right.

Halloween breakfast - 4

There is a ceramic black cat with a jack-0-lantern on the left.

Halloween breakfast - 2

I scattered a few of the large gold jewels around the table too.

Halloween breakfast - 7

I made a new recipe, Spiced Pumpkin Cake Donuts just to serve this morning.

Spiced Pumpkin Cake Donuts at From My Carolina Home

After breakfast, I am going to don my long blonde wig….

Blonde wig

and secure my little dragon to my shoulder on a pad I made for him.  I sewed his feet and tail down so I hope he will balance on my shoulder long enough to be effective as a prop.  The pad has long tails to tie on the shoulder and arm, and secure across to the other side for stability.  After Halloween, I’ll cut the threads and put him on my desk.


Do you know who I going to pretend to be?   Daenerys Targaryen from Game of Thrones, mother of Dragons and Queen of Meereen.  I’ve read four of the seven novels so far, each one is almost 1000 pages!  DH is going as Sherlock Holmes.  Normally we do something as a couple, but not this year.  We are driving up the Blue Ridge Parkway, so I hope to have some more autumn loveliness to post next week too.

Happy Halloween!  Are you planning any Halloween fun?


Handmade Halloween!

Halloween Tablescape Linky at The Painted Apron

Celebrate and Decorate 2017 Halloween Linky



Halloween cards and little goodies

Time to send out some spooky greetings!  It has been a bit of time since I was able to do some stamping.   I really love the autumn for stamping as I have lots of leaf stamps and fall inspired motifs.  I also have a fair amount of Halloween specific stamps.

Halloween Cards 2015 -2

This time I started with ecru cardstock, and my roller with the jack-o-lantern wheel with orange ink.

Halloween Cards 2015 -3

Using my roller ruler, I lined up a whole bunch of pumpkin lines on a diagonal.

Halloween Cards 2015 -4

I haven’t had a chance to use this stamp set yet, and it is just so cute. Stamping several of this one showed me that some of my inks are drying up.  The Cocoa one needs a refill, but the Chocolate Chip one is still good.

Halloween Cards 2015 -5

I had to re-stamp a couple of the motifs to get six usable ones, then I mounted them on orange cardstock. I cut the jack-o-lanterns lines into rectangles.

Halloween Cards 2015 -6

I tested several layouts, before deciding on this one with the wording at the top.

Halloween Cards 2015 -8

Inside, I stamped Happy Halloween with a little goofy spider hanging off the words.

Halloween Cards 2015 -9

I used my name stamp on the back, with an orange jack-o-lantern next to it.

Halloween Cards 2015 -12

All done.

Halloween Cards 2015 -10

I stamped “Boo to You” on the envelopes.

Halloween Cards 2015 -14

I did a half dozen with some to mail and a few for the office. The mailed ones got some Halloween confetti enclosed for an extra trick!

Halloween Cards 2015 -13

I like to give cards with little goodies to the office staff.  They do so much for me all year, and I think saying thank you is important, as often as I can.  I cannot do candy as one of the ladies is diabetic, so I look for fun things that aren’t food related.  I found these cute little felt pumpkin bags for a song, much less that I could buy the materials and make.

Pumpkin bags

At the dollar store, I looked for funny or cute things to go inside.  I found these little battery operated “candles”, little fall inspired puzzles and some leaf napkins.  I added little cookbooks with holiday recipes.  They received them yesterday so they can enjoy the Halloween fun this year.

Halloween bags 2

I have to do silly stuff like this, we do not get any trick-or-treaters up on this mountain!

Halloween bags 1

We have a costume drive with the car club on Saturday, and my costume is ready. I’ll be doing a little Halloween breakfast for DH that morning, new pumpkin recipe coming soon! Are you ready for Halloween?



Handmade Halloween!

Celebrate and Decorate 2017 Halloween Linky


Finishing the Offset Diamond quilt

This offset diamond quilt is really resonating with me right now, I like both the design and the colors. It needed some borders to make it bigger, so I added both a print fabric border, and a scrappy one to use up more of the scrap chaos. Then I loaded it on the longarm to quilt.

Offset Diamond Quilt 9

Starting with stitching down the top edge and part of both sides, then picked a panto with soft curves to contrast with the sharp angles in the piecing.

Offset Diamond Quilt 14

Offset Diamond Quilt 10

Offset Diamond Quilt 12

One thing I wanted to try with this quilt was putting the binding on by machine. I don’t like this method as a rule, because I cannot do it well. But more and more, charities are asking for this because of the frequent washing that these quilts must have in industrial washers and dryers. See my tutorial page at the top for complete instructions in a four part series if you want the step by step version of how I usually bind a quilt.  This time, I began as I always do by stitching the binding down on the right side and joining the ends as usual.

Offset Diamond binding 1

Then, I carefully pinned the binding to the backside, making sure I covered the stitching line.

Offset Diamond binding 2

From the top side, I stitched in the ditch on one side.

Offset Diamond binding 4

Then, I checked it on the backside. It didn’t work. There were two places where the binding scooted away, and didn’t get stitched down.

Offset Diamond binding 7

Arrrghhh! Not only that, but look at how uneven the binding is on the back!

Offset Diamond binding 8

OK, plan B, do the next side by stitching the binding down on the back.

Offset Diamond binding 9

So now the front looks bad.

Offset Diamond binding 11

Try one more time on another side, moving the stitching line into the binding just a bit more.

Offset Diamond binding 12

Better on the front but I still don’t like the way this looks.

Offset Diamond binding 15

I know that some will say it doesn’t matter on a charity quilt, but it just grinds my teeth not to do my best work no matter who is the recipient. But it is finished and ready to go to Cancer Care.

Offset Diamond finish 10

Have you mastered binding by machine? Any tips?



Slow Stitching Sunday #4

Another week, and I have made a bit more progress. This is such a good motivator for me to have to report each week. I might actually get these done this year! I have the yarn basket almost complete, just need a couple more pine needles and it will be done.

Week 4 Slow Stitch knitting

I started a bit on the ornamental pins while I had the dark green loaded up.

Week 4 Slow Stitch pins

I got a bit done on the scissors ornament too.

Week 4 Slow Stitch scissors

The tomato pin cushion calls for outlining in brown, but I think I’ll leave that off. It doesn’t really need it, does it?

Ornaments - week 3 tomato

So many commenters mentioned cross stitch last week, that I thought I’d show you the only completed cross stitch piece I still have.  I think I stitched this in the early 90s. It is a Victorian porch, and it hangs on the wall at my office. The kit made the whole house and garden with a tree, but when I got this far I thought that I’d had enough!

Cross Stitch Victorian Porch at From My Carolina Home

The top of the porch has wonderful details.  Darker colors indicate shadows.

Cross Stitch Victorian Porch at From My Carolina Home

There is a rocking chair and little sleeping kitty on the porch.

Cross Stitch Victorian Porch at From My Carolina Home

As promised, last week I told you all that I would give away my second set of the Sew Happy ornaments. So, the random number generator to the task!

Screen Shot 2015-10-23 at 6.35.36 PM

Winner is Sharon!  Congratulations and I’ll be sending you an email to get your address!

Sharon wrote – “Would love to win it! I’ve been looking for them since you first showed them…. I’ve done a chair seat cover, that I need to remove and gently wash now, it’s so old and dusty! and I have some crewel needlepoint chair covers that I bought at a thrift store that I need to sit and work on, you’ve inspired me! I got to thinking that I need to be doing something in the eve’s while I watch TV to avoid the munchies…. and hexie work was getting a bit boring.”

Stitching today while the football games are on, Go Panthers!

Linking up again with Slow Sunday Stitching, in the hope that it will continue to give me an incentive to link up weekly progress and finish these ornaments this year –
Slow Sunday Stitching

One other note, I found out this week that if you comment using an AOL email address, it will refuse to deliver my response.  So to the two ladies that I was not able to respond to by email, you are both AOL and I did try.  Thank you for your comments.



Beaded Mason Jar Holiday Decoration

Last year I accidentally discovered that a flared votive candle holder will fit the top of a Mason or Ball canning jar.  That post is here showing a filled jar with the candle.  I wanted to enter a jar with that concept into the fair, but I knew that two glass pieces not held together would be a problem. Still, I had some goodies to use, more gold apples and some red berries. I also found some jewels on a clearance rack (couldn’t resist those!).

Mason Jar Holiday decoration

I put the apples inside, then set the votive holder into the top.

Mason Jar Holiday decoration

Then I wondered, would the ring part of the lid fit over the votive holder?

Mason Jar Holiday decoration

Well, yes it did! I took it back off, and started playing with the fillers.  The glittery gold apples were perfect for a holiday decoration, along with some fake cranberries.

Mason Jar Holiday decoration

I added a couple of red apples too.

Mason Jar Holiday decoration

I had this wonderful beaded trim left over from another project, and it was just enough to go around the jar ring. I hot-glued it onto the ring, then replaced it on the top over the votive holder.

Mason Jar Holiday decoration

I added a ribbon rose to cover the seam.

Mason Jar Holiday decoration

Some of the clear jewels are in this jar.

Mason Jar Holiday decoration

The green and gold beaded trims goes nicely with the fall colors too, so I can use it now and then into December. Those gold and root beer jewels go well for autumn. I think changing the ribbon rose to a gold one would go better through the fall holidays.

Mason Jar Fall

I had a little corn cob, and some fall leaves to go with the tiny pine cones and fall color fillers. The red rose was changed to a gold leaf.

Mason Jar Fall 2

All I have to do now, is open it up again, and change the inside items to change holidays.

Mason Jar Holiday decoration

Have you started any holiday crafting?

Linking up

FoodieFriday . vintage charm button 2



Autumn 2015 October views

Autumn is coming late this year, there is still a lot of green left on the trees.  A couple of storms have blown leaves off the trees up the mountain while others are just beginning to turn.  Several nights in the 30s lately have encouraged a few to show some brilliant color. There are a few maples that are just blazing red, gorgeous against an azure sky.

Autumn 2015 at From My Carolina Home

This one is near my work. There is still some green on it too.

Autumn 2015 at From My Carolina Home

This one is in the park where I walk after work, trying to get in some exercise while the weather is good.  It still has a way to go.

Autumn 2015 at From My Carolina Home

Also near my office, this maple didn’t get the memo to be red, it is brilliant orange.

Autumn 2015 at From My Carolina Home

There are several of these in a row at a bank, still showing some green with the orange.

Autumn 2015 at From My Carolina Home

One of the dogwoods over our drive is finally putting on its burgundy colors.

Autumn 2015 at From My Carolina Home

Our peak for color is going to be much later this year, I think it is still a couple of weeks away. I’ll bring you more color from the mountain as it changes. One other harbinger of autumn, the pumpkin patch at a church on my way to work is back.

Autumn 2015 at From My Carolina Home

It does appear to be a most sincere pumpkin patch again this year.

Autumn 2015 at From My Carolina Home

Could the Great Pumpkin be far behind?

Autumn 2015 at From My Carolina Home

Another red beauty at the edge of the pumpkin patch.

Autumn 2015 at From My Carolina Home

Back home, the little bit of floral beauty left is still going strong.  I hope that chrysanthemum lasts a bit longer!

Autumn 2015 at From My Carolina Home

Are you seeing pretty colors at your place?



Scraps – Using Up Some HSTs

Going through the scrap pile to make order out of chaos, I found a good number of half square triangles I could use in a project. Remember this mess? There were a lot more half square triangles in that pile than I remembered ever having.

Scraps 1

I pulled them all out, and squared them all to the same size.  I found a group with all the same light fabric, so I pulled those out first.

Scraps 2 HSTs

Then, I started playing around with laying them out to see what would happen.  The diamond shape was pretty easy to get, and I remembered seeing a quilt somewhere, at a show or on the internet, of an offset diamond that runs off the edge. So I tried that.

Scraps Offset Diamond 3

Yes, I like that! But I knew with a limited number of prints, it would be important to keep them all straight.  I don’t have any more to of that background print to make more HSTs, or at least I don’t think I do, LOL!!   I started by sewing each row independently.

Scraps Offset Diamond 4

Then I numbered the rows with little bits of paper held on with a pin on the left side of each row.

Scraps Offset Diamond 5

Then I pressed all the even rows one way and the odd rows the other so the seams would nest.

Scraptastic offset another row

Here it is so far, I need to look at some borders now to make it lap size for a charity quilt.

Scraps Offset Diamond 7

I think I have enough HSTs that I found while pressing to get one more row too.  So we will call this a work in progress, more later!  See the finish HERE.

Linking up…
Sew Fresh Quilts . WIPWed