Sunday, January 25, 2015

grow your blog 2015

hello everyone, and welcome to my humble blog abode.
i'm very excited to have stumbled across the grow your blog link up by viki at 2 bags full, and i cannot wait to see and follow some more fabulous people.  perhaps even you!
to start off, here's a little sample of "about me" information:
my name is emily, and i live in the good ol' state of california.
in the everyday world, i'm a college student (again), a teacher's aide for a pre-k program, a dance instructor, and a wedding & portrait photographer.  i'm the 2nd oldest of 4 siblings, i have a grumpy cat named elroy, and i often consider mexican food for every meal.
when i'm not running around like a crazy person, i enjoy spending time with friends & the boyfriend, debating signing up for the gym, day dreaming about being in disneyland, and what you'll see here most of all, sewing.  i come from a crafty family, with both of my parents sewing & making things as hobbies as well as grandparents, aunts & uncles being creative in various ways as well.  most of my crafty lingo is spent with my cousin lisa, who you'll often see referenced every now and again.  we still hold our childhood dreams of a mall kiosk, but right now they remain as an etsy shop that might need a little tlc one of these days.
when i was trying to think about what to post to share with all of you blog hoppers, i thought i would pick a collection of projects that really reflected how i spent my last year of blogging.
if you didn't guess by now, it is safe to say that i am indeed primarily a quilter!  i currently have no kidlets of my own to make adorable outfits for, so i spend my time sewing quilts for various things.  if you asked me 10 years ago if i would be spending time quilting, i probably would have laughed at you.  my step back in to making quilts (since my first quilt) was my senior project in 2006.  they were simple 12" blocks, 3x3 for shriners hospital.  the quilts were sandwiched, sewn around the edges, flipped right side out, top stitched and tied.  that's it.  now i'm sewing with tiny pieces, paper piecing, and crazy log cabins.  my, have the times changed!  i love being able to combine my free time joy of getting crafty and use my photography skills to create blog posts that (i feel) are visually appealing and help document all the fun.
of course, you're likely to see more than just quilts on this blog, hence the name "toothpaste and orange cat."  weird name, i know.  this blog has been through quite the name process, but i think i've finally found one that sticks.  backstory is that i remember hearing a character on a disney channel show once tell his sister that they were so completely opposite, they went together like toothpaste and orange juice.  in 2009, my sister got a flame point siamese cat for her birthday, and he has become the resident mascot of the house that everybody wants to see when they visit.  well, orange juice turned to orange cat, and i was able to get my older brother to draw me a cartoon-y version of this fat orange siamese cat to represent my collection of randomness on this blog.  sometimes you'll see works in progress, others you'll see photos from a weekend trip i may have gone on.  perhaps some days i'll just throw on a post with a favorite song or something.  which i might as well throw on right now, just for kicks.  here's american beauty/american psycho by my all time favorite band, fall out boy.
things get a little random around here. i'm absolutely not a professional writer in any means.  so i'll jump back on track and give you a little peek about what's being worked on now :)
i've powered through my 2015 catvent quilt, and i'm currently approaching the FINAL STAGES.  as of yesterday, the entire front is pieced together and ready to be pinned to the batting & backing to be quilted.  shoot, i'll just show you.
so THAT is what 100 black and white cat blocks look like.  hard to believe that about a year ago, my first catvent was finished, and i have gone on to make this beast.  one side is a little wonky, but i think my cat elroy did that intentionally out of spite that i made a quilt of his posse.  now is on to the real question of where to go from here, and maybe you'll be able to help.
HOW should i quilt this beast?  i have a hot pink backing for it, and variegated black & white thread.  my initial and probable plan is to do a 1" cross hatching like i did the last one, but now i'm second guessing and thinking perhaps i should have it free motion quilted with a sort of yarn ball effect.  the gray fabric isn't solid, but instead has a small swirly pattern to it.  though, that would involve letting go of control and paying someone else to do the quilting for me.  decisions, decisions.  what do you think?
thanks so much for stopping by, and i hope you're here to stay for awhile.  i've got some other projects on the way that are hopefully going to be just as fun to do and share with you all.  if you're on instagram, you'll see LOADS of behind the scenes pictures of projects and life.  my user name there is @wereradletshug
happy blog growing day!


  1. How can I be the first to comment?! I love your blog and your quilts are amazing. I am very very new to quilting so I can't answer how to quilt this beauty (love the touches of pink btw). In fact, I have two quilts in process and am going to take a class on long arm quilting at my local quilt shop when the tops are complete. The thought of quilting them myself at home makes me cringe. Anyway, glad to have found your blog. I started at the bottom of the list of 0-100 followers. ;0)

  2. Hi Emily, I'm visiting from the GYB event. My goodness, your quilts are amazing, and that catvent quilt. Rach

  3. Hi Emily - Visiting as Vicki's rep to make sure your link works - and, I am thrilled you are in my section to check. Your quilting and energy are contagious. I love it. I have several young friends and absolutely adore them and share ideas and "stuff." Welcome and will be following your life. I enjoy photography and lots of mediums. Come sign up for my giveaway, too. Hugs, Karen (Alaska Blue Moose -

  4. love your quilts, I am a quilter from Ga. visiting from Vicki's blog and now following you

  5. Hello fellow IG kitty mini swapper! I recognized your Catvent quilt from my Instagram feed. I can't wait to see how you finish it. The yarn ball effect sounds awesome, but I understand not wanting to give up control of the quilting. Either way I'm sure it will be great. Looking forward to your next posts.

  6. Hi Emily! Stopping in from GYB event and am glad I did! I added myself as a GFC follower and have ya right on my blogroll so not to miss a post! I'm a quilter in Oregon and also a second grade teacher! I love that you are are so young and so into quilting...seriously that cat quilt is just awesome!! I hope ya stop by. I run a TUesday Archives linky you may be interested in and well, I hope if you're inspired by what ya'll follow too! Keep quilting are a natural! Val from

  7. You throw a great party. Thank you for inviting me!

    So that you know, I've become a Follower and when time permits, I'll be back to see what other beautiful things were made by your hands!

    What this party is all about is to GROW your blog and I'm hoping to do the same. When you get to Section One, check out A Country Chic Retreat and SuZeQ Creations, my personal blog, in Section Fifteen I'd love for you to follow and subscribe to.

    Happy crafting!

  8. Visiting, via GYB, from St. John's, NL Canada. Love the grey & black cat quilt!

  9. Blog hopping with “Grow Your Blog”. Its so great to meet you. Wishing you the best!!

  10. Absolutely adorable blog header!! I'm about to embark on making my first 'real' quilt (I'm a crazy quilter by passion) and admit to being scared out of my mind. It's lovely to see your beautiful creations (esp. love the black & white cats!!!).

  11. Visiting from GYB, it is taking forever to get all the way around because there is so much interesting to read on all these blogs, and yours is the same. Love your quilts!

  12. Greetings! Enjoy the vibe of your blog and love all the quilts you have made. My favorites are the cat quilt and the world quilt. New follower so I can see what you will make next.

  13. Your 100 block black and white cat quilt is very striking! Have you started the quilting already? I think your grid idea would be just great.