Thursday, June 30, 2011

A Quilt Story

This is the story of a quilt for a third child.  A boy, with 2 older sisters.  The boy's grandma had decided that she'd make each of her grandchildren a quilt, hand embroidered with their name and bday, made with the love that only a grandma can give.  For the first few grandchildren, the quilt-making process was easy and effortless, as each child came into the world at random, large-spaced intervals.  But as more of her children got married and had children the grandma got behind in her making of special quilts.  Until she found herself with a stack of 4 unfinished quilts (and the rapidly approaching arrival of yet another grandchild).

The boy, now 2 1/2, is soon to be a big brother.  A big brother without a quilt to snuggle.  Relegated to the world of third children who's moms and grandmas ran out of time/steam to make special quilts.

Enter the mad-sewing neighbor to said boy who offered to finish up grandma's quilt, as his mom doesn't sew and is currently with child.  Thankfully, Grandma had long since cut the fabric, leaving mad-sewing neighbor with a nicely organized quilt kit complete with batting and backing.

Mad-sewing neighbor got to work.  After sewing like the wind for a few short days the quilt was complete.  Boy was happy,  Mom was happy, Grandma was happy.  All was right in the world.

The End.

Staying true to the original look of the previously made quilts was essential so the quilting was a simple zig-zag stitch in the ditch.

Close up detail of embroidery blocks.  All were made over the course of many years by the boy's Great-Grandma.

Finally, yellow gingham binding (made like double-fold bias tape) was zig-zagged on to match the quilting.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

From Leotard Pattern to Tankini Top

I saw this pattern, Kwik Sew 3774, back when one of the locations of my favorite fabric store was liquidating everything for a move.  Although it is a leotard pattern I thought it would make an awesome tankini top. Both M. & B. were all over it when they saw it.  I knew they would be.

Here is Kwik Sew's versions of this pattern.


And here is our version--View B.

She received LOTS of great comments at the pool from her friends and mine.  And she loves it!

On view B. I needed to extend the upper portion of the pattern about 1" in order to have enough room to fold down and still have the straps slide thru.

Below is how the original pattern finished up--fold over and the edges didn't match. 
So once the straps were inserted it was pulling weird on the front side.  I didn't like it.
Now I have to fix this for B. so she can wear the "mermaid" suit to the pool. 
We'll pair this tankini with black bottoms.

Per the pattern the straps cross in the back.

M. had me add just a little extra band at the bottom for her comfort level when she raised her arms.  I cut a 3" strip, folded it in half lengthwise and then attached it to the bottom of the tankini.

Her suit is a girls' size 14 and the finished length from underarm to hem is 14".

B.'s gold metallic swimsuit fabric from Jo-Ann Fabrics.

Linking up to WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Randomness & a Cute Suit

It isn't summer here yet--at least not weather wise.  Two weeks after school has let out and we haven't been able to go to our public pools yet due to rain and cool weather.  Overcast and 61 degrees today.  Not summer!  The kids are anxious and ready to revolt. The only saving factor has been swimming lessons--indoors.  We have 2 more days of those and then the weather had better cooperate or I may be looking for year round school to enroll my children in.

For you quilters who can't throw away even the slightest scrap of fabric I can empathize.  I have a hard time tossing swimsuit fabric when I know there is enough to make a little suit.  And I don't have little little people at my house anymore.  So I try not keep if I can help it.

However, when I finished some suits for an order a few weeks ago I couldn't toss the cute polka-dot material that was left.  Luckily I had some matching pink and made the little cute suit below.  First time I've made this suit in 2-toned.  I like that it looks like a faux tankini.

It is for sale on my Etsy shop. 
It is a girls' size 6. Too bad my B. is too big for it.

If you buy it I'll toss in a remnant piece of this Guess apple print swimsuit fabric (16" x 59" piece).  Just type in "APPLE" in the comments from buyer section when you order.

Sunday, June 19, 2011


Well, here comes the finished results of our flooring project.

But first below is the mess in the LR we had to deal with for a few days.  Nothing like having your fridge right there in the middle of your LR along with every other piece of furniture, etc. from the kitchen and dining.  Oh...and still have your MIL in town for a good number of those hours too.

 Hubby unpacking the flooring and getting ready to lay it all out.

 Getting there,

 and completely put in--before trim replaced.

This new flooring makes me so VERY happy!
And the wide open space is also a HUGE improvement.

Next on the kitchen to-do list, but not until kids go back to school in the Fall (because then I will be FREE every day for at least half the day), is to knock out the soffit and move the bank of cabinets up higher along the fridge wall.  We (I mean hubby) will also be building some different cabinets to adjust some other things.  I hope most of this can get done before hunting season, otherwise, it won't be touched 'til the first of next year.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Kitchen Update

This is what has been consuming my life for the past week or so. 
We're moving slow as we started this a few days before grandparents arrived
for our daughter's baptism. 
Not the best timing on our part, but it was time and we got a great deal on bamboo flooring. 
I can't wait!!! 

But first up, removing the remaining wall between our kitchen and dining. 

 Hubby and oldest daughter taking out the last of the wall.

It's gone. 

Our kids all commented on how "big" it seems now.  That is for sure--I love it.
We had to move electrical from one wall to another, ripped up the remaining linoleum, and added 6" to the existing wall in order to support the soffit between the dining and LR.

Tonight we are hoping to get the floor all laid out. 
Then we can move on to constructing the build-ins for the double oven and cabinets.
With all the stress of it I need to go hibernate in my sewing room for an hour or so.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Spring Youth Dance Dress

A couple weeks ago there was a Spring Formal Youth Dance at church.  Usually L. justs wears a skirt and a tee for Church or at the dances.  We (or maybe it was just me) thought it would be nice if she stepped it up a notch for this dance.  I am happy that she is actully happy to wear a dress and not just a skirt.

She helped pick out the fabric and the pattern.

McCall's 6027


She received quite a few compliments on her new dress--she even wore it the next day to Church. 

  • Lengthened waist by 2"
  • Added 5" more to length
  • Adjusted sleeves to be cap--otherwise this pattern shows lots of armpit.
  • Made own bias tape to edge both hem and sleeve hem
  • Needed to raise neckline for L.'s comfort level--added 1  1/2" contrasting band 

Monday, June 6, 2011

Wedding Gifts

We had 3 weddings here last month and sometimes that can get interesting when you're trying to come up with gifts.  Hubby always likes to give a portable tool set for 2 reasons.  #1 because out of all the gifts we received when we got married 16 years ago that is the present we have used the most. Seriously.  We love that item. In fact, we just had to replace ours last year.  And #2 because he feels the groom gets ripped off in the gift department. Probably true.  

However, if we don't really know the groom then I'd prefer to give something off their gift registry.  That may be a little boring, but I do try to personalize it a little bit.  This year I bought some kitchen items off 2 different registries and then added a handmade apron.

This is how I wrapped the latest of those gifts for the reception for a girl from our Church. 

Bundt pan, hotpad, and towel, wrapped it in an apron and then wrapped all in cellophane and a pretty ribbon.  I try to not use wrapping paper when possible because I think it is a waste.  But I still like it too look fun and pretty.

After finishing putting it all together I remembered I had found this tutorial for making covers for bowls--for taking to a potluck or such.  It might have been fun to have added one to use w/ the bundt pan.  Maybe next wedding reception....

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Swap my ride

....or another sewing machine rescued from neglect or the trash.

Some people resuce fabric, and some people rescue sewing machines. 
Unfortunately, I might be in both categories.  Although I did give away a large trash bag of denim and jeans scraps.  That should count for something....not sure what though.

Anyway, one of our neighbors around the block had a sewing machine table setting out on their curb with a sign on it : "vintage sewing machine".  (with possibly FREE posted before that)  I couldn't be sure as I drove by after taking a kid somewhere and just briefly caught the sign. 

Then later that evening I decided to go drive by again and see if the sign really did say free and sure enough it did.  And the neighbors were out--adding more stuff to their giveaway pile.  Turns out they had some flooding issues in their basement after all the rain we've received in the last week or so.  She was thrilled I wanted the machine and she was pretty sure it still worked.  It had belonged to her MIL or grandmother-in-law, but she, of course, had never used it.

So we loaded it up in the van, along with the original manual and attachments in the original case (gotta love that bonus), and I brought it home.  Both hubby and my oldest daughter sort of rolled their eyes at me, and laughed, when I unloaded it in the driveway.

After the kids went to bed hubby and I stayed up a bit too late checking out the machine.  The table legs need some tightening, but hubby can take care of that.  And when we opened it up to use it first thing it sewed like a dream.  (cue some singing)  We just oiled it up good and now it will replace the other sewing machine and table (shown below) that I had in our LR that didn't work, nor even have all the parts and pieces to it. 

I had been using it as a lamp table, with no intention of ever sewing with it. 

Here is the new one that can also double as a lamp table in the LR, but as hubby said, "You can pull it out to use when you have your sewing parties."  Isn't he great?!

one machine in and one machine out...hence, "swap my ride".

Note: Just had to buy new knobs and add some sewing machine oil---about $3 total.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Bubble Ruffle Hem Skirt

Here is one of the latest projects that I recently completed for display at my fabric store.

Love, love, love this pattern.  Super cute AND super easy, which is how we like it.  And now that I've seen the pattern I can tell you that you definitely don't need one to make this type of hem.

Here are the basics to making your own bubble ruffle hem skirt.
  • Cut 2 pieces of fabric 9" wide by 1.75 times the width of the bottom of the skirt piece.  i.e. 17 inch skirt would have ruffle piece of approx. 30 inches long. 
  • Sew short edges of ruffle together, RST, so that you make a large loop.
  • Fold the ruffle piece in half, forming a fold on one long edge and the raw edges matching.  DO NOT press.
  • To form the "bubble" you shift the raw edges about 2 inches so that the the short sewn side seams are NOT matching.  It will appear like it is twisting a bit.
  • Then you put in your gathering stitches.
  • Gather and attach to the bottom of the skirt.

They only wanted me to make the top and the bubble skirt, but while I had the pattern in my possession I also made the pleated version.  I used some funky tie-dye that I had done myself after having a bunch of dye left over from some other tie-dye project.  

I think it will look cute with a turquoise or a purple tee.

  • B. is a size 8 and I only used 1 yd. of 45" wide fabric to make this.
  • I added about 3-4" to the length of the skirt pattern so it would at least hit her knees.
  • I made a second bubble skirt (shown below) and on that one I made the skirt part a little wider so it would be a bit more gathered.  I like it better that way. (Plus I love the little bird print from M' Liss I found on clearance at Hancock Fabric's) 

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Wip Wednesday

Linking up again today.

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

It's been a productive couple of weeks around here.  My finishes are growing faster than my starts! Yay!

Recent finishes: 
A graduation quilt for our family babysitter and one for our niece.

And my string quilt. 
It only took a year, but it's finally finished!! You can see/read all about it here.

Picked out fabric for a wedding "guest signing" quilt. 

Started the B Blocks for my Scrap-tastic Quilt.


It's coming together quite nicely.  With 17 of 35 blocks completed I'm officially halfway there.  Yay!

No Progress On anything else.

Don't forget to check out everyone else's projects this week.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...