Monday, December 1, 2014

Pillsbury Grands! Ole Opry or Country Music (Carla) Hall of Fame?

After I found out I was one of the 100 finalists in the 47th Pillsbury Bake-Off® contest, I got to work. Not practicing making my recipe for the competition, but creating art. I started with a technique I learned in Lilla Rogers online classes. First you do a little research and get warmed up drawing all things related to your topic. First NASHVILLE:

Then Pillsbury. I watched YouTube videos of the contest. 

What would the doughboy do in Nashville? 
Get a new country suit fitted by Manuel

Sing at the Ryman? At the contest party, I fed the band these song titles and they had a little fun with them.

My first draft was inspired by Minnie Pearl + Macy's Thanksgiving parade + Nashville.
My friends thought the balloon should be more doughboy-like. Respectful of trademarks and licensed characters, I decided the balloon would be me and my Pretzel Bites with my handlers. That made sense for a team shirt.
On the plane ride home I got another idea I wanted to explore. Top Chef finalist and The CHEW anchor Carla Hall was this year's host of the Bake-Off®. She added so much fun and excitement to the contest. Turns out, she's from Nashville so I began my artwork swap.
My plan was to make a normal thank you note. After hearing Carla and THE CHEW co-hosts discussing special greeting cards and creating a pop-up card on the show I got a BIG idea.

A thousand thanks to TEAM PILLSBURY and CARLA for a Bake-Off® well done!

Friday, October 31, 2014

Looking for a Reason to Make Pastrami-Pretzel Bites?

Here is my entry for the 47th Pillsbury Bake-Off® contest: Pastrami-Pretzel Bites. Look good?
Here are a few reasons why you should give it a try:
I left out EASY TO MAKE.

The Grand Prize is a Million bucks. Stay tuned...

UPDATE November 3: Category winners are posted at
Check them out and vote through December 2. 

Monday, October 20, 2014

Marjorie Turns 29. Again!

It had been on my TO-DO list for too long: Send Marjorie a birthday card. Send her some pictures from our Pillsbury Bake-Off® Alumni brunches. 
I did some sketches.
Then I made a dieline with my Silhouette software and the machine cut it out.
OOOPPPS. The lines were very straight and when I popped out the design it was not a solid piece. See below how the eyes are floating and the hair is all wrong on the right side.
Back to the drawing board. I re-did the dielines. Now the lines were curved and all are connected to each other.
And it's all one piece. 
I love the negative space left behind as much as the positive.
I made a couple more. Looks the the drama masks.
Looks just like her, right? 
She has a HUGE smile.
Now I can cross that off my TO-DO list. Happy 29th Marjorie!

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Pillsbury Bake-Off® Potholder Purse, Nashville Edition

Mr. Martha, oops, I mean Mr. GreenThumbWhiteApron sent me a little gift. He knew I had made a bag from potholders before, so he sent me his. I decided I'd make a tiny evening bag. 
First I decided on the message. I didn't have all of the letters I needed so I altered some. A "P" became a "2" and a sideways "N" became a "Z". Then I layed out some options.
Yuk. Nope. This is better. See the sideways "Z"?
I used jewelry glue to hold them in place. These potholders have a pocket, so I squeezed tight and pinched the glue into the fabric fibers.
Then I sewed them on. I passed the thread through the holes a couple of times, like sewing on a button.
Now what to do for a handle? Last time I used a sleeping bag zipper. In my scraps I found some really cool wide patterned shoe laces that I had got at Target.
How to attach? I cut one lace and pinned it on like this.
Boy is my photo color off. I sewed a straight stitch really close to the edge of the shoelace. Notice how I folded over the unfinished  top edge.
I pinned the shoelace to the other potholder. It looks skewed and wonky when pinned.
After I started sewing, I had to switch position of pins to fit under the presser foot and avoid the beads.
The machine didn't like sewing over the thick edge. "%@$#!" Seam ripper!
To finish, I tied the other shoelace to the loops on the potholder.
Hi big brother!
Can't wait to go out on the town in NASHVILLE because:
My recipe is here.

Monday, July 14, 2014

Garden Tour 2014

Mom, here are my garden tour pics for you. This is a mix of all 3 gardens.
What to do with a stump?
Mini fairy garden.
What great doggie steps!
 I liked the shape of these leaves.
I liked this support.
 These were so unusual, I thought they were fake.
This garden won a Star Tribune contest. See more pictures here
Lots of great stonework there.
And sculptures.
Here is my garden tour from 2010.