Thursday, March 5, 2015

tsuru lone star pillow

I have been really itching to make a pillow.  Since our church congregation is having a little auction next weekend to help the youth raise money for camp, it seemed like the perfect excuse.  I loved that we did this when we lived in LA (you can find my past contributions here and here) and am excited that they are starting it up here.
tsuru lone star pillow
This was inspired by Elizabeth Hartman's pillow that she made using the center block of her Aviatrix medallion.  The pillow is 20" square. I expected the piecing to be finicky and annoying, but other than having to re-do a few seams it actually wasn't too bad.  I don't know if I would want to make an entire quilt of these blocks, but it was a fun project for a pillow.  
tsuru lone star pillow
The colors were pulled right from my favorite Tsuru print, Blossom Festival, which I used on the back.  I love this print SO MUCH!  Rashida Coleman Hale is a genius.  
tsuru lone star pillow
I finished the pillow with an envelope closure (because I didn't have a zipper long enough, oops) and I bound the edges of the pillow. 

Making this pillow really makes me want to make new covers for all of my throw pillows, especially because I just got Jen Kingwell's new book and it has some amazing pillow projects.  I definitely see more pillows in the near future.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Patchwork Baskets

My daughter has an art class every week in a dangerous location: across the street from Joann's.  I don't love Joann's, but if I wander inside I somehow spend gobs of money without realizing it.  Last week I was browsing around the magazine section and saw the 16th issue of Love, Patchwork, and Quilting.

It had lots of pretty things inside, but I was drawn to these patchwork baskets. I needed these in my life.
love patchwork and quilting patchwork baskets
I am not a particularly organized person (and that would be an understatement).  My house isn't a total disaster but piles of mail tend to overtake the counter every few days and if you open a cupboard in my sewing room you might be surprised how many things would fall out.
patchwork baskets
I started out with scraps from this quilt (which I just got back from the long armer and which is a sad story for another day) minus the reds and oranges plus a few other random scraps and added a linen.  The whole project was pretty quick and would be really fast if you used a solid piece of fabric instead of patchwork.

The smallest size is adorable and is perfect as a catchall for keys, wallet, change, etc.  The little squares are each 1.5" finished.
patchwork baskets
The middle size is great for setting next to my sewing machine to keep bobbins and seam rippers from rolling all over the place.
patchwork baskets
And the largest size is perfect for mail.  It holds a lot without holding so much that I will never find what I am looking for.  I have been using it for the past few days so you can tell it is already a little worn in :) 
patchwork baskets
If I made these again I think the only thing that I would change would be to quilt it a little bit.  

The pattern called for "lightweight fusible interfacing" and I used Pellon 808 because that was all I had.  It gives the baskets nice structure, but I think something like fusible fleece would also work well.  

Friday, February 27, 2015

Gramercy Jersey Knit Receiving Blankets

I might be a little addicted to making these.  After making a Charley Harper version, I ordered a couple of Leah Duncan's Gramercy prints.  Unfortunately my older helper was busy with homework so the photos are a little more . . . interesting.
grammercy jersey knit receiving blankets
I have (and love) both of these prints in quilting cotton and thought they would make fun baby quilts.  In reality I am not a huge fan of the black print for this, mostly because it came out of the wash pretty faded.  But I do love the tan print.  
grammercy jersey knit receiving blankets
I am sure that we will use both of them lots though since they are wonderfully soft, lightweight (perfect for San Diego), and stretchy.
grammercy jersey knit receiving blankets
The knit fabrics are 58" wide and since I had ordered 1 yard of each of them, I trimmed them down to about 45" to make 36" x 45" blankets.  That left me enough leftover to use for binding, but I decided to use Robert Kaufman black jersey for the tan blanket since the black Grammercy print had faded so much.  

Now that I have made three (and have fabric to make a couple more) I am hoping to make these for baby shower gifts in the future.  But before I start producing them en masse, I would like to improve my skills a little.  
grammercy jersey knit receiving blankets
Despite sewing extra slow and pinning carefully, I still ended up with a couple skipped stitches and the binding on the back is far from perfect (this was one of the better sections). 

I would love to compile a list of tips for making these blankets.  Do you have any tips for sewing with knits?  Or making knit binding?  I have ordered a couple different things to try (another kind of needle and a different thread) and will be trying those on my next blanket, but I would love any additional tips.  Thanks in advance!

Monday, February 23, 2015

AGF Stitched - Birchen Quilt with Free Pattern

A few versions of this quilt may be popping up into your feed this morning, but I would like to introduce you to my version of the Birchen Quilt.  This is a joint project by the Fat Quarter Shop and Art Gallery Fabrics and they are working together to bring you this wonderful (FREE!) pattern.  
Recollection Birchen Quilt
Now don't be scared by all of the half square triangles.  Yes, there are a lot.  But the pattern has you use Triangles on a Roll to make the HSTs and they make the process much faster.  And guess what: that means no trimming HSTs.  
Recollection Birchen Quilt
In addition to the pattern, the FQS has also put together a video on how to make the quilt.  So even if you are a fairly new quilter this project is very doable because the video shows you how to complete each step. And if you would like to make a quilt exactly like the one in the video, the Fat Quarter Shop has created a kit.  

I chose to make my quilt using Katarina Roccella's new collection Recollection.  I really fell in love with the large scale florals in the collection, but all of the prints are so beautiful.  And now that I have finished the project I am in love with the corals and the blues and the low volume prints . . . really all of them.  
Recollection Birchen Quilt
The pattern creates a nice, large 72" x 72" quilt.  The blocks are a nice big 18" which means that if you wanted to make 4 blocks you would have a nice, 36" square baby quilt.  

Of course I had to choose the gloomiest San Diego day in weeks to take the photos.  At least I got them before it started raining!
Recollection Birchen Quilt
Did I mention how much I love the large scale floral?  I used the other colorway on the back :)  
Recollection Birchen Quilt
Finished size: 72" x 72"
Pattern: Birchen Quilt
Kit available here
Follow on Bloglovin

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Echino Bee Noodlehead Divided Basket

This basket has been on my to-make list for a long time and when I saw Svetlana's version the other day, I bumped it up to the top.
Echino Bee Noodlehead Divded Basket
Pretty much the reason that I had put off making this project is because I hate interfacing (this project calls for SF101 and fusible fleece), but in the end the interfacing was minimally obnoxious and definitely makes a big difference in the finished project.  

The entire process of making this was so fast!  When I got to the last step I thought to myself, "Wait, that's it?".  My topstitching is a little sloppy around the top because I got a little lazy about the ironing, but it's nothing I can't live with.  

This will definitely be my go to baby shower gift in the future.  I already put this blanket and some newborn diapers in my basket to test it out.  These diapers are leftover from when my son was a baby (almost 5 years ago!) and he outgrew the newborn size in about 2 days. Diapers don't expire, do they?
Echino Bee Noodlehead Divded Basket
The exterior pieces were made with Architextures in brown (available here, here, or here), the pocket is made with an Echino print, and the interior is Kona coral (one of my all time favorite solid colors). I am going to make at least one more of these for myself and I have 3 friends having baby girls in May so expect to see a few more of these :)

Sunday, February 15, 2015

economy block playmat

I think I am a little behind the times on trying out economy blocks (find Rita's excellent tutorial here), but it seemed like a good choice for a playmat for the baby.  I have tentatively decided not to make the baby a new quilt and to use this one instead.  I am sure that I will want to make him one once I meet him, but I am feeling a little directionless right now.
economy block playmat
So instead I started cutting out novelty prints for a small playmat (still technically a quilt but I'm calling it a playmat since it is so small).  I want to have something for the baby to play/sit/lay on while we are waiting for the older kids at all of their activities that has lots of colors and contrast for the baby to look at.  This quilt was heavily inspired by this gorgeous quilt.  
economy block playmat
I was a little concerned that I wouldn't have enough novelty prints in my stash, but it turns out I have a ton of fabric.  Oops.
economy block playmat
The backing is essex linen in black since I wanted something a little more rugged that wouldn't look dirty too quickly.  The binding is a blue DS Quilts print from Joann's and you may have noticed that the quilt is machine bound.  Shocking, I know.  I do not like machine binding quilts but my technique is getting a little better and I wanted to make sure that the binding was a little extra durable.

Finished size: 35" x 35"

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

some advice?

I haven't been able to sew as much as I like lately.  I did get caught up on December and January do. Good Stitches blocks.
do. Good Stitches Wish Circle January blocks
goldfish block
And I have started cutting a few things for a project for the baby. 

But over the past couple weeks I have been excessively tired and have been having headaches and more nausea.  It feels like the first trimester all over again.  Then a couple of days ago it occurred to me that I might have gestational diabetes.

So I went in yesterday for my 1 hour glucose test and sure enough I failed.  I get to spend 4 hours at the doctor's office on Thursday for the extended test, but I have pretty much already resolved that I have it.  I can't think of another reason why chocolate would make me feel sick instead of happy. 

Do any of you have a not-too-difficult low carb, high protein recipe that you love? I would really appreciate any tips or suggestions if you have them!  Hopefully regulating my blood sugar will help me feel a little better and a little more inspired to do some sewing.  
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...