Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Hunky Dory charm quilt

Recently I discovered The Village Quilter in Mount Holly, a fun alternative to my local quilt shop that's not too far from home.  I went over there to poke around and couldn't resist picking up a charm pack of Moda's "Hunky Dory" fabrics, thinking I'd do a quick prayer quilt and get to work with some pretty prints at the same time.  They soaked me for another couple of yards of fabric by handing me a "free" charm quilt pattern, but I tried not to be too bothered by that.  Here's the result:

I enjoyed working with the fabric so much that I decided to quilt it instead of tie it, so I made another quilt to give as a prayer quilt and did some outline quilting and bound it instead of turning it.  I like the backing too; it was fun to use a big piece of a large-scale print.  These pictures were taken with my phone and do not do the quilt justice -- I will try to get better ones up soon.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

In the bag

I have been busy making bags, because (unless they're the plastic grocery kind) you can never have too many, and it is always possible to make one suited to your exact purpose that is also pretty.

These were a snap to make using Betz White's tutorial.

For example, these shoe bags from vintage bedsheets (and yes, I have a pair of pajama pants in each of those patterns) replaced the plastic bags my dear friend was using to pack shoes in when she traveled.

This bag was a bit challenging with its pleats and lining, but look how cute it is!
I had fun making the "Mama's Bag" from Amanda Soule's Handmade Home -- the body is a thrifted brocade curtain, the lining is cotton poplin, the straps linen and the tie grosgrain ribbon, and the bright aqua and yellow helped to cheer me up through a dark, snowy winter.  I've been keeping my red cashmere/merino chemo-cap-in-progress in it and it makes me feel quite sophisticated.

What a fabulous way to repurpose a pillowcase!
I have been looking for a good pattern for a market tote bag for some time now -- one Christmas I made a bunch of Morsbags as gifts and kept a few for myself, but found they didn't hold up well against the volume of groceries I needed to bring home.  And forget those ugly cheapie "canvas" bags they sell in the supermarkets.  I rip right through them.  But the other day I found this tutorial on Creative Kismet, and I was overjoyed!  A good, sturdy and adorable market bag made with materials I own to the point of ridiculousness.  What could be better?

I'm going to make a dress for K with the other pillowcase from this pair!
Ah, but now I'm on the hunt for a good produce-bag pattern.  Because yesterday while I was thrifting I found a gorgeous Laura Ashley rose-print sheer that will make up into as many produce-bags as I could need, and possibly more.  Once I find it -- Look out, Wegman's!

Friday, April 16, 2010

International girl

Here is K getting ready for school on International Day.  She is (sort of) dressed as a "Russian Peasant Girl" in long gathered skirt, peasant blouse and babushka scarf (courtesy of Carefree Clothes for Girls.)  And I have become One of Those Moms who stay up late the night before The Day Of, sewing the costume the child Has To Have and didn't plan ahead for.  I could kick myself for doing it, but at least she looks cute -- if not exactly authentic.  (Her idea was to go in her Sock Monkey Pajamas, because they say "Made in Vietnam" on the label.  Not exactly what the teacher had in mind, honey.  I like your creative thinking, though.)

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Stashbusting; or, I am totally making this quilt

I have officially declared May "No New Fabric Month."  In preparation, I have been rummaging through my scrap bins to identify usable material, and cutting it up into sizes predetermined by the good folks at Moda, who make those irresistible charm packs, layer cakes and jelly rolls lying around next to the bolts in the quilting stores. 

This is what I got out of the "small scraps" bin!

I could buy any number of books of quilt patterns that utilize the pre-cuts, but I was feeling thrifty and started hunting around on the web for free patterns, and I found this tutorial for a Value Quilt.  I love it!  It cries out to me!  I must make one!  You will excuse me, please, if I go back to my scrap bins and keep cutting.  I am on a mission!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Quick fix

I needed a quick project to do this morning in between finishing a quilt top and preparing it for quilting, and the guinea pigs needed some new bedding, so --

I think the blue of the mattress pad brings out the rust in Gordon's fur!
If I had given Chancellor his name, it would have been Spike.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Ready and waiting

Here's the quilt I made to take to this week's prayer quilting session.  It's taken from a free pattern I got from Moda when I bought one of their charm packs last week -- hopefully you'll see the quilt I made from those squares soon; it only wants binding.  For this one I made my own "charm pack" out of 5" squares from scraps of vintage bed-sheet fabric. It was a joy to put together; at every stage I loved it more and more.

I was not at all certain about the plaid fabric for the backing, but I dove in with it and I think it gives a fresh, modern look to the old-fashioned florals.  I would have liked to quilt this one but of course the prayer quilts are tied, so I put in pink pearl cotton ties and it's all set to go.  An extremely satisfying 24-hour project.  Will definitely be doing this one again.

Vintage linens

Who has time to post with a collection of vintage linens this pretty? I'm making a prayer quilt, a tablecloth, a set of napkins, a dress (dresses?) and some charm packs for a rainy day out of the scraps. Who has time to clean up the studio with all that to do?