Quilting as you go Quilt

A while a go I saw one of these ‘quilt as you go’ quilts pop up in my Pinterest feed. It was a little shaggy and pastel so I sort of ignored it. But the idea stuck and when I picked up a nice jelly roll of florals (not normally my thing) I thought it would be nice to try out.  I followed some basic instructions here A Cuppa and a Catchup – this wasn’t the one I originally saw but what Google brought me when I searched. She doesn’t use a jelly roll for her’s but the concept was the same.

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As you can imagine – the quilt is super fast. The only issue was that you end up with a lot of vertical stripes. To add a little interest, I inserted a eyelet lace border into the binding and some appliquéd butterflies into the corner. I am VERY happy with those butterflies.

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We took the quilt out to Jack London State Park and photographed it at the Wolf House. The boy is just finishing The Lost Hero which has it’s climactic fight at the ruins. It’s awesome, go check it out.

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Fancy Foxes

You wan to know what the most fun quilt ever is: Elizabeth Hartman’s Fancy Foxes. Yay, now you know.

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Sadly blurry 😦

I made this one for a friend’s first baby. I knew the mom-to-be was a veterinarian and that they had rescued more than one wild creature from their backyard. I figured I couldn’t go wrong an animal theme. Plus, I’d been eyeing that fox pattern for a while

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Making each little fox face became a bit obsessive  – “just one more and I’ll go to see” – level obsessive. I think that red/orange one is my favorite

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No, maybe the polka-dot one.

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Or.. oh I don’t know. I love them all.

Improv Hexie

Hexie

One to file under “things that are finished” – it’s an improvisational giant hexagon with scrappy borders. I started working on large-ish panels of fabrics that I liked without much of a plan. I first thought I’d do a stack of coins quilt but I have made one of those before and the idea of a very large hexagon was interesting. I figured that since I had no plan, doing something strictly because it was interesting was a fine plan.

Large hex

I tried to use every scrap of the panels that I could. Most lined up in haphazard but pleasing ways and even the ones that didn’t fit added something. As you can see there are no pictures of the back… that would be because it’s a freaking mess. Really, so many mistakes that are just lazy and careless. The quilting is freestyle squares which isn’t great but wouldn’t be terrible if I had pinned better. There are some folds on the back. Serious, serious folds.  I fixed a couple that I could easily get to but one is just too much. Oh well, I’m happy with the quilt top if nothing else. I was hoping to give it as a baby quilt but with the back as it is I think it may need to be a picnic blanket.

Pros:

  • Good color/pattern choices
  • Fun improv top

Cons:

  • Terrible sandwich making
  • Lazy quilting
  • Not sure I can give it to anyone with the back all janky 😦

See, that stash is totally worth it

You know those City Gym Shorts that everyone and their sister has pinned to Pinterest? I made them.  And they are awesome.  And you want to make them, too.  Gym shorts for everyone!  Even those of us who haven’t been inside a gym in years. I used an unknown cotton lawn that has been in my stash forever, some red lawn I found in the remnants bin, and a thin red double fold bias tape.  The whole thing took just a few hours and I love, love them. I plan to wear them on the beach in Hawaii next month (oh yeah, we’re going to Hawaii next month).

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See the cuteness.

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Check out the detail!

Dirndl Skirt for Palm Springs

Back in the spring, our family took a little trip to Palm Springs.  I wanted to make something light and fun and somewhat retro for the trip.  My fantasy involved sipping cocktails on the patio like a modern lady in my desert oasis [the Ace Hotel – I would live here if I could]. This simple dirndl skirt (I used Gertie’s basic pattern here) seemed just about right.  The fabric is a basic cotton and I think I had about 2 1/4 yards.  I used every last bit of the length – I like my skirts full – and used the extra from the width to make the waist band.

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All I need is my pearls and I’m ready to be a good ’50s homemaker.

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I really like the deep hem. This one is about 2 1/2 inches and I think it would be even better in a heavier fabric.  I want to try this in some other fabric.  The gathers at the waist poof a bit in this cotton.  I think a little weight would give it a bit more structure.  I did end up wearing this to work today (with less crazy shoes) and a cardigan so I guess it does double duty – Palm Springs starlet and code monkey… what more could you ask out of skirt.

The Good: cute fabric, easy sewing

The Bad: cotton needs to be ironed every time, I didn’t do the best job with the gathers.

 

Portrait Blouse Wearable Muslin

I’m not a fan of making muslins. I really don’t have enough time to make two versions of everything I want so… yeah… I just don’t do that. In this case, I found 1.5 yards of a basic blue cotton voile in the remnants bin at Stone Mountain and Daughter and decided to make a “first attempt” muslin with it. I full intended to (and have) worn this out and about.

The pattern is the Portrait Blouse from Gertie’s New Book for Better Sewing. I made a small adjustment to increase the bust size but otherwise followed the pattern. I think for round two I will lengthen the blouse a bit. I don’t often tuck my shirts in and I need a bit more wiggle room between the top of my pants and the bottom of my top to avoid accidental tummy showing (see photo – thank you retouch tool).

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Why am I about to laugh?

Why am I about to laugh?

oh, that's why

oh, that’s why

First Colette Mabel

I am in love with Colette Pattern’s Mabel skirt.  I even love the model they use for in that link – camera loves that girl and the feeling appears to be mutual.  Mabel is a quick sew -about 1 hour – knit skirt project.  I have a heavier knit I plan to use next but for the first time out I used some jersey I had bought for Kids Clothing Week.  It’s a Volcom print of monsters.  The fabric is a bit lighter than what you would normally use for a skirt, think an H&M or Forever 21 level of thin.  I made a standard Large (my measurements were close enough for knit) and am happy with the fit.

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The color is a bit weird in this shot.  The skirt is more like a brick red than a fuchsia but you can see the basic shape.

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You can wear it to get the car washed with leggings and pink sneakers.

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or in the backyard.  Note – it seems I can’t smile while taking my own picture.  I will work on it (I’m not really pissed here – just concentrating).

Kids Clothes Week – Quick Change Trousers

I struggled with Kids Clothes Week this year as my kiddo is at the age where he has very strong opinions on his outfits.  There must be jeans, there must be t-shirts.  No other clothes are acceptable.  It took lovely Ms. Mucho to remind me that there is nothing that says the clothes have to be for your child. So I decided to make a favorite from my own child’s past for a new little one.  These are the Quick Change Trousers from Handmade Beginnings.  I made the 12-18 month size for my friend whose little Z is just about 1.

Giraffe Pants

The really awesome part of these pants is that they are reversible.  Which makes them a bit stronger for that walking/crawling stage.  Also, gives you more chances to use cute fabric.  For one side I used a giraffe print for the main part of the legs and an olive green panel for extra diaper space.  The other side is a ombre blue leg with a mustache bum.

Mustache Back

What I really like here is that the fabric is left over from a blanket made for this exact same baby way back.

Front side

How cute is the giraffe print peaking out when the cuffs are turned?

New Toy!

My new machine is here and I love her.  She has so many tricks and is such a good girl. She knows how to cut her own thread

cuts thread

and she has a clear bobbin cover so you can see when the thread is running out – which is brilliant.

bobbin cover

and she can take on big old quilting projects without complaint.  She is oh so quiet.  The boy even said so. My husband is now regretting he didn’t get me one back when we lived in a loft (sewing is rather loud in a shared space).

quilting

She still needs a name, though. I’m taking suggestions so feel free to post them.

Radiant Orchid – Detour to Grandma’s House

She’s Done!  Well, not quite done but the quilt top is done.  While I had, of course, planned to have this baby sandwiched, quilted, and bound by today, it became pretty clear that wasn’t going to happen.  Between working, mothering, and otherwise having a non-sewing life I failed to get the batting that is a requirement for doing the quilting.  On the positive side, Oakland decided to put on a show last weekend of just how pretty it can be here and I took the opportunity to pin the quilt top to the magnolia in the front yard and get some nice pictures using a camera other than my phone.

Pantone Quilt Trees

I based my quilt on the Lovely Little Tress in the Forest Quilt but instead of a wall hanging with green trees I made a 38″x44″ radiant orchid forest using solids from Pink Chalk Fabrics.  I also arranged my trees to make a path for my special guests.

Pantone Quilt Trees

Little Red here needs to make her way through this very odd forest to her pal The Wolf.  See, Grandmother’s house loses some of it’s appeal when the forest turns purple.  Days like these call for adventure.

 

 

little red the wolf

My plan calls for the winding path to be done in the quilting. I’m pretty excited to see how it will turn out.

 

 

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It look me a couple of tries to get the trees to come out ‘non-wonky’ and the sharpness of the lines leaves a lot to be desired.  I’ve never made a quilt with such small piecing and I clearly need a bit of practice.  Each tree ends up being 3 1/2″ x 4″.

Working on the pattern the trees would take against the white took a good long time but was also my favorite part (other than the embroidery.  I love the embroidery). I used a LOT of tape on my wall – you can see the in progress shots here.  I also continued watching (less) bad movies. The final push saw “Robin Hood, Men in Tights”, “Penelope”, “Who Framed Roger Rabbit” (this was during the embroidery phase), and a couple of “Firefly” episodes. I ended strong.  We’ll see what the quilting phase brings (hint: it will be Luther episodes)