Friday, June 29, 2012

Good Life

I made a table runner yesterday using Good Life by Robert Kaufman.



And I bound it twice. I once again fell for the "I can do this and it will be much quicker" lie regarding machine binding. I can't do it, and it's not quicker since I ALWAYS rip it out & re-do it.

It looked fine on the front:



But despite pinning excessively, it still looked wobbly on the back, and the corners didn't even catch:



Stupid to even try, since I actually enjoy hand sewing the binding. And I love the way it looks - I love getting those corners just so:


Even if I can't photograph them well. ???

I love the backing fabric for this:


Overall, a very fun project



And it's in my shop, if you're interested.

Linking up to Pieceful Life for Show it off Friday.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

No sewing. At all. All week.

My daughter turned 5 last weekend.


Do you like the dress? She liked it so well that she refused to take it off in order to participate in the water games I'd set up. She sat on her Granny's lap, content as could be to just watch the other kids play. What a diva.

Anyway, cleaning for, shopping for, cooking for, and hosting this event took my whole weekend - my usual prime sewing time.

And cutting into Aster Manor has taken all of my evenings this week. I haven't even gotten my sewing machine out at all.


I read on Moma Love Quilts that paper plates were a good way to keep your block sections separated. What a brilliant idea!


I loved Tracy's quilt so much that I've decided to go with the same pattern for myself. I'm a little nervous over how it will turn out 'scrappy' style, and with a print background. We'll see I guess.

Monday, June 25, 2012

I always fall the hardest for OOP fabrics

And to make it worse, this time my daughter fell with me. I've never seen her so excited about fabric.

I'm refering to the adorable Pam Kitty Morning line, and the crucial, but all sold out kitty panel. My daughter saw it while I was looking at her blog and the hunt was on. Nothing on etsy, some jerk on ebay wanted about $150 for one panel & 17 fat eights! That calculates out to about $50 a yard and I'm disgusted by the greed of it. I wouldn't have fed into that greed even if I'd had it. A general google search produced no panels at all. I clicked on the link on her blog and searched every store she had listed there. None of the ones with online shopping had it. The next day, phone in hand, I called every quilt shop she had listed that did not have online shopping, and wham!


I'm now the proud owner of not one, but two, Pam Kitty Morning panels!! Bought at the very reasonable price of $8.25 each. The name of the very friendly, helpful, and fair quilt shop is Heavenly Patchwork, but I'll go ahead & tell you - I did get their last 2 panels.

They should really re-print this line. It's only been out since last fall and it's obviously very popular. For good reason!


The next step, of course, was to find coordinatings. I went back thru the shops with online shopping and just chose the one with the largest selection. These were bought from Strawberry Patches in Bakersfield, CA. This quilt shop was also very helpful and friendly.


They were willing to cut fat quarters for $3 each, and I got a yard of that super sweet stripe for the binding.


I'm so very happy we didn't miss this boat, before the fabric was truly gone.

Enough fabric buying for me!! But here's my advice on that front - the only way to not buy fabric, is to not look at fabric. If you start looking at it, you end up with some every time.

Monday, June 18, 2012

My very first



But probably not my last.

Camille at Simplify decided to de-stash some. I decided to help her out. The timing of her decision, right after I'd made several things to sell, made it an easy decision indeed. So nice to buy quality fabric, at a discount, and totally guilt free since I'd earned the money outside of our regular family budget.


The line is Aster Manor from Fig Tree. My work with Strawberry Fields left me with the impression that I'd be happy to work with any Fig Tree line. First glance of this line is only reinforcing that impression. The browns are so rich, the pinks so soft - somehow, she makes tan a color you WANT in your quilt. I haven't even opened the bundle. As much as I want to spread out & inspect each piece, I just want to enjoy the completeness of my first bundle just a while longer:)

She also had some yardage of a couple of prints. I had to think about this, because frankly the prints she had just didn't appeal to me. But after thinking about the patterns I'd probably make with it, I decided some yardage would be a good thing and chose the one I liked better.


I wish photographing fabrics was easier, because I can't believe I ever hesitated. And so glad I got over it.

To sweeten the deal, she gave away a free pattern to anyone who made a fabric purchase. Twist my arm, why don't ya? I considered Swoon, Flower Girl, and Hopscotch, but Hopscotch won out.


This won't be the pattern I use for Aster Manor - it's just the pattern I wanted the most.

Actual sewing time is still pretty scarce around here. I did find a mothers-day-out program giving me two days to work (at my day job) in peace, but that still leaves me two days to try to juggle working and child entertaining. She so should have had siblings.

Edited to add: Aster Manor is by 3 Sisters, not Fig Tree. Ooops! Awesome designers, both.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

My first Bible cover

My friend asked me to make Bible covers for her kids. I don't know anything about making Bible covers. I googled at least half a dozen times looking for what I wanted, but in the end, I just had to wing it.



She wanted this one to match the grab bag I made about a month ago.

I'm so very pleased with how it turned out:



Which is not to say I would do anything differently if I had it to do over, but imperfections aside, I'm pretty happy with everything - especially getting that zipper in without any web help:)

Edited to add: Linking up to Pieceful Life show it off Friday.


Tuesday, June 12, 2012

My new cutter

My 25-year-old rotary cutter broke the other day.



Sheesh - don't they make ANYTHING durable anymore? I'm totally joking, because who expects something plastic to last for 25 years? Anyway, I went to push the button that retracts the blade and the only thing that happened was the button falling onto the cutting surface. So now it's a safety hazard since I can't retract it. I know what you're thinking - the 4-year-old that lives here, right? But no, she knows enough to stay away from sharp things - it's me I'm worried about.

My first thought was just to run down to Hobby Lobby & decide between another Fiskars or an Olfa, but then I remembered something in an ad I'd seen one time - something about a ruler with a track so the cutter can't vere.

So looky what the postman brought me today:



I am so looking foward to getting these out tonight!

Friday, June 8, 2012

Stars

I'm falling more in love with these stars every day.



My plan is to put some white between them. I can either go with a diamond shape:



Or a hexagon shape:



I'm leaning towards the hexagon shape as it will put a little bit more separation between the stars. I had no idea what I was going to do with these when I started, but the more I do, the more it feels like an awesome quilt for my daughter.

These stars, I have about 25 so far, are all the result of her playtime. I can make them at the park, or the McDonalds play area, while she plays, or the best is at my friend Mandy's house while our kids play together. One afternoon this week, the kids were playing in a small pool while Mandy & I did our hand sewing in a screened in porch right beside them. The weather was perfect, the kids were fully entertained and it was just the best afternoon I've had in a while. Before Tracy moved to Maine, we spent many an evening doing hand work (I crocheted and she cross stitched) while watching a movie. If it's not your inclination, there's no understanding it, but to me that is the most pleasant passing of time there is - handiwork with dear friends.

(Linking up to A Pieceful Life, Show it off Friday)

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

A new type of hooded towel

Another friend is wanting to give hooded towels as a shower gift. I saw this tutorial a little while back and remembered it instantly. I'm really happy with my first attempt.


This doll is a little bigger than newborn size, so the towel is a perfect size in my opinion. should last the first year, maybe even 2.


Even if the only model in my house (my daughter) had been small enough, she probably would have been just as dirty, so....

Anyway, in the process of making this, I realized I was having a burp-sized rectangle of towel waste. So I grabbed a couple of bowls and did this:



I lined it with flannel just to be sure.



When I lay it across my shoulder, it fits perfectly. I love this shape - giving extra coverage on the front & back, but narrow enough on the shoulder that it's not constantly wanting to slip off. That's quite aggravating when spit up is coming your way, if I remember correctly. I've tried to block most of that out.

I think these will make great shower gifts!

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Hooded Towels for everyone

It's been pretty quiet around here, huh? Let me assure you, the only thing quiet is the blog because this little girl



is out of school for the summer. My current schedule is to wake as early as I can and work until she wakes up. Then I try to get her out of the house for a portion of every day, then I come home, cook supper, eat, bathe her, and work until bedtime while my husband is home. You will notice, what is not in that schedule, is time for blogging or housework. Sometimes I can get by with working while she is home and awake, but as an only child myself, I can appreciate the boredom of having no one to play with.

I did make her another hooded towel this week using this tutorial.


I had previously made them with washcloths, but she has a bigger head now. I really like this one using a handtowel. And my friend did too, so she ordered 3.



She has one girl


And two boys



I like how they ended up matching. I didn't plan that from the beginning. I just bought two blue towels & then went looking for fabric.

Now I'm off to research childcare options, because this schedule is killing me!