Archive for the ‘Quilts’ Category

Rotting My Brain

I’ve been watching alot of TV lately and I totally believe it rots your brain. I mean, I used to be productive. I used to whip out projects left and right. I would sew, read or just sleep. Then, we got Netflix.

My favorite hat

Now, I watch movies whenever I want. You can watch them on your computer or your TV. How genius is that?! Seriously though, I’m not going to go on and on about this, but man- I love it.

So, back to some things I do manage to get done:

Growing

My mushroom log has gown. We watched it grow amazingly fast. We would walk away for a couple hours and I swear there was noticeable growth when I returned. And the growth overnight was amazing.

Done!

We cooked them up as appetizers for some guests the other night along with some Shitake’s which were also grown on a log. It was so very yummy.

I’ve also managed to get alot done on my newest quilt:

Quilt Kit

I adore this quilt. I’ve been eying quilt kits for the longest time and finally broke down and bought one for mother’s day this year. Kits are nice, but I’m not sure if I’d buy them again. For me, it seems like it takes the originality out of a quilt. I thought I wanted a no-brain-er type quilt, but now that mine is almost done, I feel like I almost cheated. I still love my quilt, but I just don’t know if I would recommend buying a quilt kit.

(BTW- the kit I bought included the pattern and all the fabric for the quilt except the batting and backing which is what most kits include. You still have to make all the cuts for the blocks, but it takes the guess work out of the fabric choices.)

Next up is this tote I made many months ago. I wanted to share it because I use it 24/7.

Project Tote

It’s not my usual tote. This one is lined, interfaced and has pockets on the inside as well as outside. I bought all the fabrics used in this bag from Ikea and I must say that their cotton solids have a nice weight to them.

Inside

I’ve been using it by my bedside to keep everything from library books to my latest knitting project. The best part is that it easily comes with me. We are constantly takes little trips so this bag works well for the on-the-go project that I feel I always have to take with me so I don’t get bored.

And lastly some quick links that I have to share:

I just made these Fudge Babies tonight and man, they are awesome. You’ve got to try these simple, 4 ingredient, no baking desert. Even Chris liked them although he said they immediately made him think of Schweddy Balls.

I just discovered Made. And let’s just say that she is my hero.

I need to cram in a new hobby so I can make this, but also want to sew myself a really, really good pair of jeans and maybe huge leather wallet.

Anyone have any tips on sewing with leather?

*******

ps- The first photo of my favorite hat is a free pattern called Foliage by Emilee Mooney that I found on Ravelry. I made it with some luscious Malibrigo worsted yarn and the color is called Molly. I have more hats to share soon.

Beautiful Bento

My Bento Box Quilt

I love this quilt.

I Love the Puckers

I loved making it: a simple and fast pattern. Although I didn’t like the color-coordinating-trying-to-make-it-all-work part, it was still fun.

Flannel Back for Bento Quilt

I loved quilting it: again simple and fast since I followed the squares and “stitched in the ditch” as it’s called. This is really my first real quilt. I’ve sewn blankets/quilts before, but I have never taken the time and quilted so much. I usually just do a couple lines or outline a couple squares. With this quilt, I stitched every square and it really looked much better because of it. I love my walking foot and know that I couldn’t of done this job without it. So if you’re thinking of quilting, seriously, spend the dough (mine was about $35 for my Janome machine) and invest in one.

Ms O Loved It Too

But most of all, I loved giving it away:

Grandpa Augie and His Quilt

After the party as we were pulling into the driveway, I told Chris that I missed my quilt.

Maybe I need to make another…

Hint for Fini- get me your dimensions so I can make your Christmas present before next Christmas!

Now for some quilt details that most may find boring:

1. This is a lap size quilt, a 60′ square. It’s a perfect size for snuggling on the couch.

2. I used 11 different colors: 5 light and 6 dark. I bought ½ yrd for each color, but ended up using less. The pattern calls for 20 fat quarters (10 light and 10 dark) for this size. You won’t use all of it.
3. For the backing, I only used 3½ yards of flannel whereas the pattern calls for 5 yards. Mine was made up of 3 pieces which may be the reason why I didn’t need as much fabric. I also didn’t make my binding as a separate piece. I cut and sewed my backing so that it was about 3 inches bigger all around than the quilt top. Then to bind it, I simply wrapped it around to the front of the quilt and machine stitched it in place. I will never do this again though. It turned out very messy so I will be doing a separate binding from now on.

4. With my colors, I made 8 different 2-color squares. Of these 8, 4 have the dark color in the middle of the square and 4 have the lighter color in the middle of the square.

5. It takes 4 small squares to make up one large square. My quilt had a total of 16 large squares which is made up of 64 small squares.

5. The biggest color mistake I made was that for a couple colors (yellow, sea green and light blue), I used them in two of the 8 color-combo squares. For example, I had one color-comb0 square of yellow and grass green, then I used the same yellow for another combination- yellow and dark blue. I think this was why we had such a hard time trying to lay out the squares so that no two squares with like colors were touching. Next time, I’ll make 8 color-combo squares of totally different colors.

Okay, that it. Those are the boring quilt details I wanted to share. This is the stuff I like to know so I thought I’d pass it on. Let me know if you have any questions.

Heart Day

When Nana and I picked up lunch the other day, Eddie got a special surprise just in time for Valentines:

Eddie and his Heart Nugget

Augie wanted one too, but no such luck. He did bring home a bag full of treats from school today so I don’t feel so bad.

I haven’t gotten anything together yet for Valentines Day. Chris surprised me with a gift last night A DAY EARLY! Really, THIS IS A BIG DEAL and it deserves all those capitals. He made a special trip to Costco and braved the lines for a case of my favorite: S. Pellegrino mineral water. Man, I love that stuff. I can drink bottles a day. I was so moved that I actually cried. Yikes. Tears for mineral water. How sad is that?

So for my kids, I just got some cute little Jelly Belly heart things at Target and I plan on writing out some cards later. (I also got one for Chris so I’m the loser this year.) I’ll make it up to them next year.

I’ve been too busy lately with that typing job (which is actually going good and I’m really enjoying reading it as I go) and Grandpa’s quilt. It took Chris and I hours, but we finally arranged the squares to where we like it:

Bento Quilt Getting There

The pattern was no help to me when it got to the colors and combinations. Chris and I basically moved things around until we got it to where the similar colored squares were not touching. At that point, we didn’t care if some did not match.

If you didn’t know, Chris is color blind in the reds, greens and browns so this was a true challenge. We finally got the squares to where we liked it and it took about 2 hours to sew the 16 larger squares. (Each of the 16 large squares is made up of 4 smaller squares which is then made up of 5 pieces.) The quilt is going faster than I expected and my seams are matching up pretty well. Tonight I gotta get the whole top sewn together because Grandpa Augie’s and my son Augie’s birthday party is coming up on the 23rd!

I need to plan out my sewing better. I seems like I’m always trying to make a deadline.

And the Winner Is…

Congrats to Janet and Steph who are my two winners of my 100th post giveaway! The prize is on it’s way ladies. Thank you to all who left a comment. I’m enjoying checking out your blogs and am again inspired by all your craftiness. Check out Janet’s great quilt (inspired by SMS’s Quilt month) and Steph’s great idea for easy felt food.

Things around here have turned to quilts as well. I started cutting, piecing and sewing my Bento Box Quilt for Grandpa last night.

Bento Quilt Started

Of course, my measuring was off as usual and pieces are a little long… and short (don’t ask me how), but I think I can fix it. I’ve never followed a quilt pattern before. In some ways, it’s nice to not have to calculate everything- number of colors and yardage, block size, how many to make the size you want, the backing yardage, etc… But when I sat down to see if I bought enough fabric, it was hard trying to figure out someone else’s explanation. I begged Chris to sit down with me and help.

“Please, pleeeeeease, it’ll take me so much loooonger if I have to figure it out by myself.” It’s true, I hate math and will try anything to not have to think. My sisters claim I’m good at it which is why I can sew. Whatever.

After whining some more, he agreed to sit down and together we figured it out and YES- I bought enough fabric. Yipee. Nothing will stop me now from getting this quilt done in 2 weeks…

Well, as long as I don’t go out with these ladies anymore:

Fijian Mamma's

They promised me some authentic Roti Curry the other night and I couldn’t resist. I didn’t get home until almost midnight and still had to clean my house for the kids the next day. Aaaargh. It was fun and the food amazing as always, but that Kava can lay you down!

Something New, Something Old

Okay, here’s the first of the presents to go out the door.

The first is something I haven’t tired until now- Burp Cloths:

Burp Cloths

These are made with thick, unbleached cloth diapers with a super soft flannel sewn onto the middle panel. I used another one of Joanna’s great tutorials. (I’ve used her cloth shoe and splat mat tutorials and love them. She has great tips.)
Really, these were super easy and fast to whip up. The bad part was getting the flannel straight on the cloths without the edges looking all wonky. Read all of Joanna’s suggestions closely because you DO have to fold the burp cloth first to find the correct size of the panel to sew. Also, PIN it in place. Even though it looks like a quick and easy sew, the pieces don’t stay in place. Maybe it was all the stretchy material I was using, but in the end I think the new mom will appreciate them.

I also made this baby a little blanket:

Easy Baby Blanket

Again, easy with just two pieces of fabric, a yard each, sewn with right sides together, turned right side out and topstitched. I was going to sew a block quilt with a couple different fabrics, but like always, I didn’t buy enough so ended up with this. Oh well.

The last gift is for the baby’s older sisters. We can’t leave them out so I made them my old favorite- Tiered Skirts:

Tiered Skirt Sister's Tiered Skirt

They were supposed to be exactly the same, but yes- you guessed it- I didn’t buy enough fabric so I had to search through my stash and improvised with the solid blue fabric. (You will not believe how much fabric a couple little skirts require! I needed 2 yards and only bought a little over one so I was way short.

I did learn something new when making these this time. I have a “gathering” foot, but I can never get the darn thing to work right so I was messing around and found a better way to make these gathers. I set my stitch length to the longest possible one and my tension to the highest number which is the tightest. I then sew a straight line about 1/4″ from the raw edge and it makes the gathers perfectly! Usually, I like to have alot of gathers, but with my shortage on fabric, I didn’t have enough to make these really fluffy. I love the bright colors and I think the girls will too.

So that’s it for now, next up, Grandpa’s Bento Box quilt. I just hope mine looks even half as good as this one. If you get a chance, check out her blog, My Aunt June. This girl’s got talent!

Oh, and thanks for all the nice comments for the Giveaway. I really love reading them so please do so more often. Tomorrow’s the big day so get your comment in and maybe I’ll pick YOU!

Blankie for O

Ms O's Blankie

This blankie started last May while at Black Butte. I was working on the boys’ blankets and wanted to get a start on one for the baby. I was 8 mos pregnant at the time and didn’t know the sex of my baby. Call it mother’s intuition, but I bought mostly girly fabric. There’s a wonderful fabric store in Sisters that makes me want to spend the whole day just dreaming of what I could make with their amazing fabric selection. Needless to say, I finally got around to putting it together yesterday. I noticed that O is getting very attached to a blanket that Auntie Lizzie bought her. (Being a mom, I’d rather she attach herself to something that’s homemade!) It took me awhile to decide on the layout and I still wasn’t sure of the colors until the very end. Now that it’s all put together, I love it! Hopefully, a little 10 month old will come to love it as well…

For O Ms O's Blankie

Ah, completion!

It’s finally done… I started these bedspreads for the boys when I was 7 months pregnant with Olivia. I finished Augie’s last fall, but poor Eddie has waited and waited. Both my boys can sleep under their blankets tonight- I’m a happy mama!

Boy’s bunkbeds

Eddie’s bedspread