Friday, January 20, 2012

a travel sewing kit

Amy, of lots of pink here! has this wonderful travel sewing kit tutorial, that I just loved from the first time I saw it.  So with all my applique projects lined up to do this year, I just had to make it!  I think it will be so useful, whether I'm doing applique, embroidery, cross stitch, needlepoint or petit point.  
Except for the binding, which is Aviary, I used Patisserie by Fig Tree Quilts for Moda.  To do the patchwork, I used THIS method of Elizabeth's from Oh, Fransson! It was a really quick way of doing it. 

travel sewing kit

Then I just did some machine embroidery over the seams to quilt it.

travel sewing kit

Inside, I added an extra page for my needles and added the fabric cover to it. I plan on using this for various forms of needlework, so I'll have a page for each type of needle. Then I put in a pocket for my needle threader, as with age, this is becoming more and more handy, lol!

travel sewing kit

travel sewing kit

It was great fun in piecing this together.  If you need a sewing case, I'd definitely recommend this one. I know I'm going to get lots of enjoyment out of using it, and it's so handy to have it all in one place! 

Monday, January 9, 2012

"Bouquets for Hazel" quilt-along

It starts today! Yeah! I'm in-love with this new quilt called Bouquets for Hazel, designed by Shelly of Prairie Moon Quilts.  She is so kindly sharing her pattern with us and offering tutorials and directions along the way, as we read about the adventures of her mom, Hazel, back in 1953. I learned so much from Shelly on the last one, I just had to join in on doing this one too.
HERE is a good place to start reading, with lots of links to the information about this new quilt-along.

I got my swatch sheet filled out and here's a look at my fabrics:
supplies for Hazel Ilene quilt-along

They are from the Aviary line by 3 Sister's for Moda.
I didn't have the 3 yards in the large green floral for my Fabric #1, so it will be the outer border and the rest of Fabric #1, will be the smaller green floral print.
And for the block pieces and applique, it will be an assortment of Aviary prints in pinks, blues and greens. I just didn't have the yardage so it will have to be rather scrappy.
I haven't decided on what method to applique yet.  I'm leaning towards trying machine applique with a monofilament thread but still not sure.
This is going to be great fun! Please, if you're looking for a quilt-along with a bit of applique and piecing, and a wonderful instructor, come join us!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

2011 Final Countdown Challenge, Task Three

This is a really great idea of Shelly's to do for Task 3...

"Fall in love again. With an old UFO, that is...."

I chose my A Tisket, A Tasket, 12 Months of Baskets quilt.  I'd love to get this one done.  It's been shelved for quite awhile.  Not sure exactly why. So here are my finished blocks...

I have 4 to go before I can start the piecing.  Looks like I had scraps picked out for the one and the background cut for the others. 

I had these fabrics picked for the finishing of it. Starting from the left, the paisley will be for the binding and wide border, next is the thin inner border, the red for sashing posts and tan for the sashing.  For Christmas, I got this wee mini iron to help with the applique, so I'm all set. No excuse not to finish it now!
Yes, I really do love this one.  It was my first attempt at applique and I learned alot by doing it.  I really want to have this up on my wall this year. 

Thanks again, Shelly, for doing this challenge! It's been great fun!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

2011 Final Countdown Task Two

Thank you, Shelly for pushing me to get this task done!
Task 2 of the Final Countdown challenge was to:

Pick one sewing task you've been putting off, and do it!

I chose to recover my sad ironing board.

It's an old thing, given to me by a neighbour because it was too heavy for her to use any more. I really like it as it is nice and sturdy, but it's larger than any covers I've come across. As you can see, I had just pinned an old cover on from another board I had. Not great!
I've put off doing this for ages and then just before starting to do this task, I found THIS great tutorial on using the casing from your old cover! Brilliant!
So I set to work. I just decided to use white for now. I know it's boring, but that's what I grabbed and had enough of. I enlarged it and put darts at the wider end. I'm really happy with it! 
Now onto Task 3...

Monday, January 2, 2012

sewing space clean-up

Shelly of Prairie Moon Quilts is holding another year-end challenge. I participated last year and it was a great way to start the year off with a cleaned up sewing space. Plus I won some wonderful prizes. You can see some of what I did HERE. So I just had to join in again. You can read about the 2011 Final Countdown challenge HERE. We have until the 5th to get'er done so it's not too late to join in on the fun!

The first task: Clean up a pile.

Well I had lots of those so I've been working on this for a few days now.
Before shot:
before clean-up

After shot:
after clean-up

So what I did:
- removed unit that had got stuck in front of my hanging fabrics and bins (it now has toys in it in the family room)
- removed hanging fabrics and folded and placed into unit on back wall
- removed yarn bags from up high on shelves and put bins of sewing notions
- cleared out Christmas things
- placed old sewing machine table beside my current one that will fold out for pressing purposes
-yellow desk will soon hold sewing notions instead of kid's crafts, paper, etc.

Behind my desk is another unit that just needed dusting and clearing off a bit. Like Shelly, I have a helper too! That basket used to hold my current sewing project, but not anymore. It's been taken over!

Then there is my cutting area...lots and lots of bins!
Before shot:
before clean-up

After shot:
after clean-up

What I did:
-removed desk and put the bins by the staircase
- made table smaller
- put yarns in wooden unit
- though you can't see it, behind a stack of bins is a built in shelving unit that I took everything out of and reorganized it
- moved bins about so I can get around the sewing table better

I know it looks cluttered, but this is only temporary. My dear hubby is working on a new sewing room for me so hopefully one day, all these bins will be behind closet doors. He's just framing the room now though so it will be awhile yet. For now though, I think I can work again in this area. It had been so crazy, that I just didn't feel like sewing much. So this will be a great way to go into the New Year!

So I think I did my share of cleaning up piles. Now onto the next challenge...