Saturday, August 29, 2009

Quilt: Black and White and Girl All Over

I finished another quilt. This one is a little baby blanket. I kinda made up the pattern after seeing something in a magazine. If you want to know how I made it, just leave a comment and I can send you specifics. I tried mixing fabrics that were both traditional and modern. So there are some midcentry modern and some depression area (reproduction). Also, gotta have the good 'ol polka dots. The label on the back is a combination of satin stitch on the machine and hand embroidery.

This one is for another one of those fabulous nieces. Only 8 more quilts to go -- unless of course we get more babies in the family. Who should I make one for, next?

Saturday, August 15, 2009

The Leftovers Must Go Somewhere

There are two thing I really like to do. Read and Sew. After I read A Woman in Berlin my previous way of thinking was shattered and I became someone absolutely obsessed with the people who must live in the cities and countries torn by war. I rexamined who I thought was the enemy and decided I was wrong. Then I read Three Cups of Tea. I realized we can all do something and it will mean something to someone.

While I always believe in doing good things locally first, I ran across an opportunity to serve that I thought I would share. You know, if you're of the mind and you have the time. Read about it here and do what you feel like doing. No pressure. But don't kid yourself, you can't possibly use all that crap in your stash.

Also, if you're going to read a book about war, I recommend A Woman in Berlin or Reluctant Fundamentalist over Three Cups of Tea.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Polka Pouch

I heart these miniature pouches. I have zero need for them, but I made them from scraps so who cares! The larger one is about 6"x8" and the smaller one is only about 4"x6".

Both are part of the Simplicity 9949 pattern that I have been abusing this past week. Seriously, might have made upwards of 20 items at this point. One has bias trim for the flange and the other has twill tape. I've never used twill tape for a flange, but I like the results and will do that, again. You should, too.

The linings are simple, as I'm trying to make them up as I go. So, no pockets or fancy dividers. Just simple pouches with a zipper top. This is a simple project that requires very little fabric and a cheap zipper. Do it.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Mini Bag for Random Stuff

I was inspired by this amazing, strong woman to try my hand at boxy bags. Now, I'm addicted. It's bashing my stash like nobody's business.
In fact, if you need to blow out some space in your sewing studio, buy this pattern or a similar one. The pattern is Simplicity Crafts 9949. It is OLD SCHOOL. The pictures on the front of the pattern look like grandma-style scary crafts from 1983. I bought it at JoAnn's on sale for $1.99. I started with the biggest bag and worked my way down. Honestly, I've had to modify the patterns a little bit because as a strict rule I am using scraps. So, sometimes I couldn't do as the pattern requested. There are 11 patterns all together and they start with dimensions of about 10"x12" and go all the way down to a tissue cover at 3"x5". I've had to make up lining patterns for everything -- because I guess Simplicity doesn't believe in linings.
All these projects pale in comparison to the sassy boxy ditty bag I got from African Kelli, but such is life when you create in the shadows of the great ones.
Check back in a couple of days and I'll post the poka-dot pouches I made from this same pattern, they are SO cute. You know, if I do say so myself.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Another Birdie Told Me

Despite the stacks of fresh fabrics lined up in my sewing room, I've been turning to the scrap heap lately. Here's another small project that can be put together from scraps. I found it in a Better Homes & Garden magazine I was suckered into buying from JoAnn's Fabrics. It was called a "Shopper Hopper". I don't know what that means, but I think it looks a little like those small badge lanyards you get at trade shows. Or rather you used to get at trade shows back when companies...
a) had enough money to have a booth at trade shows
b) had enough money to send employees to trade shows
c) had enough money to buy schwag for trade show goers

Those were the days.

The scraps are left-over blocks from a quilt I pieced together for one of my many amazing nieces.

New to this pattern are the silk flowers I sewed to the bird/tree print after it was complete. It just needed something. I'm not sure I like the patterns technique for closing up the sides. But it worked out just fine. The handle is long enough, I could sling it over my shoulder and to one hip if I liked.

I used a button -- recycled from my favorite capris that I wore when I was pregnant (from Anthropologie) -- and a hair elastic for the closure.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Strippers are Good

I've had strippers on the brain lately after a funny misunderstanding during Donk's Denver Adventure. She wanted to go toFancy Tiger, but I thought that the place she meant to see was called Paper Tiger and insisted that she "check it out." Turns out Paper Tiger is a local "private entertainment" club. Yeah. I was proud of that moment. So I thought I'd find a way to put a stripper to good use.

Strippers -- as in the strips of border left over on a fabric panel. This particular panel was a set of 6 hankies and included a fancy floral border on either selvage edge. Once stripped of its hankies the little border needed a good home. So, I sewed them on a length of huck towel. (I love huck because it's not linty and it's perfect for drying hands and dishes. Also it's not as stiff as flour sack toweling)

I didn't put a big finished seam on the non-selvage edges, but did a rolled-hem with my serger and used contrasting thread so that it would be decorative. I like 'em.