Archive for the ‘sewing’ Category

November 2015

31 Jan

Projects finished in November 2015


Schnitzel and Boo Round 4 Mini Quilt

My own modifications to a pillow pattern from A Quilter’s Mixology by Angela Pingel featuring the Alison Glass Handcrafted and Handcrafted 2 Fabrics and Essex Linen. My first time doing spiral quilting and piecing curves!





Another Open Wide Pouch as an extra, using scraps from the mini quilt. I also included some chocolate and a magnetic pin-bowl that I forgot to photograph.


Aprons for Davy and his youngest cousin – these ended up being Christmas gifts. I actually ended up making an aqua strap for the floral one and using the twill tape strap in the shark one.

Pattern is the Little Chef Apron from Straight Grain (there is a matching Big Chef pattern; I should make one for Gregg!)


Felt play food for A – a birthday gift for Davy’s youngest cousin. Most of these are replicas of play food I had already made Davy but I did make him a version of the new stuff. No pattern, I basically looked at pictures for inspiration and figured it out on my own.



Not as many projects as the previous month but we took advantage of the unseasonably warm weather to go to the localish Crystal Grotto Caverns, the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore, the National Aquarium, and the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History! So much of my sewing/crafting time happens during naps, and while we had some long car trips I typically have to sit in the back and entertain Davy which makes it pretty hard to get any knitting or stitching done. Totally worth it though, we had lots of fun. The Smithsonian Institutions are open on Thanksgiving and I think that might have to become a family tradition while we are near the DC area – it was so much less crowded than a normal day!



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Posted in FO, Quilting, sewing


September 2015

17 Jan

So it looks like I didn’t blog anytime after August last year. Crazy! So for the next few Sundays, I’m going to do a round-up of all my projects finished for a month, starting with September.

Without further ado:

A quick look back at the projects I finished in Sept 2015


Clothesline Bowl (there are about a million tutorials out there, I have no idea which one I used)



Tiny Geese Keychain

need photo!


Route 66 Socks – I started these in December 2011 – I messed up the second sock and stuck them in time out for the longest time. Didn’t have enough white to do both toes the same so I did one white and one blue, knowing that my Father-In-Law would appreciate the quirkyness.



Noodlehead Open Wide Pouch – size small, using Rainwalk fabrics. I used fusible fleece and probably wouldn’t do that again because future pouches have turned out nicer.



Bonus Davy Photo:



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Posted in Davy, FO, knitting, Quilting, sewing


2015 Finish Along Q2 Goals

14 Apr

I’m trying to be a little bit less ambitious but I’m hoping that the accountability will help keep me going! So here are my goals for the Q2 of 2015 Finish Along


finish Mom’s Winged quilt – nearly finished quilting, then I will need to do a bit of ripping before I add the binding

Rainbow Road Tablerunner – I have the pieces cut out and have been using them as leaders/enders – I’d like to gift this to my MIL. This is one of the projects from the Curves Class.

Red HST placemats – there is one up on my design wall taunting me. I have the layouts all figured out, I just need to sew them together. I’m hoping this will be a good project to practice FMQ

Giant Plus Quilt – um, considering how long it took me to just quilt mom’s quilt this is probably crazy ambitious but even if it doesn’t count as an entry for the FAL I would like to at least finish piecing this one.

Retro Flowers Quilt – I bought a curve master presser foot through Massdrop and haven’t had a chance to play with it but I need two baby quilts, and I bought the pattern back when I was doing the Curves Class. I have a FQ bundle of Mormor that I think would work well for this project – I will probably only do 4 flowers (2×2 layout) but I may do 9 (3×3 layout) if I think it needs to be larger. So this one is still in the planning stage.

Spiderweb Strings – I want to use more of the strings that I made my potholder with to make a quilt using this pattern, though I may mod it a bit. Basically my idea is to make blocks until I get bored or until I run out of strings. So maybe somewhere between a baby and a lap quilt?  (also, I should actually finish the potholder but that seems too small to list as a FAL goal. But that comes first)


Mother’s day socks – first sock down, second sock started.

Harry Potter scarf for T – I have the yarn and pattern, have not cast on yet.

Featherweight Cardigan – this was started while I was pregnant with Davy. I think I finished the body and some of the ribbing but I need to do the arms.

Other Craftiness:

Cross-stitch for Jen – I’m making a snarky pattern for my sis as a graduation gift – I’m almost done with the most complicated part. I’m using this cross-stitch pattern: Not my Circus, Not my Monkeys. This is my first cross-stitch project.

Felt food: I made a bunch of felt food for Davy that I need to write up properly. My SIL commented that my youngest niece, A, would love some and so I am making a set for her as well – I’m doing sandwich fixings, pasta, and maybe a few other small things (but probably not sushi since they are vegetarians).

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Posted in DIY, knitting, Quilting, sewing, WIP


2015 Q1 Quilting/Sewing Review

05 Apr

As I mentioned previously, I didn’t do so great on quilting/sewing. I already linked a few finished projects – my tree skirt and my Christmas bunting. I am still slooooowly plugging away on the quilting for Mom’s Winged Quilt and haven’t touched my giant plus quilt since before Christmas. I also did poorly keeping up with the projects for the Curves Class. But I did get some sewing done!

I joined my first quilting bee,


I made a blanket for my son (that he loved for 5 minutes and now refuses to use, sigh),

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I made a faux chenille baby blanket as a baby shower gift that came out amazing,



I used the tutorial from Sisters, What! for the blanket and a tutorial from Stitching With 2 Strings for the satin binding and I’m really pleased with the finished project.

I made a bunch of felt play food for my son’s kitchen and also made him a toddler-sized oven mitt. This seems to be an ongoing obsession. I used some of the tutorials linked here but only loosely followed them. There will be more of this!


I started my Rainbow Road project from the Curves class,


I also tried some string piecing and hopefully will turn this into a potholder for a friend.


So I have not been a total slacker in the sewing department!

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Posted in FO, Quilting, sewing, WIP


Craft Room Redo – details

12 Mar

Another post written months and months ago – posting this now but I will try to do an update with how it’s working and the changes I’ve made.



I guess first off, I should say I’m lucky to have a dedicated space. When I bought my house I was single and I decided that I didn’t want a TV on the main living level. I have a walkout (mostly) finished basement, so I turned half of that into a TV/media space and the other half into a craft studio. I had an L-shaped desk with a whole bunch of crap on it and a bunch of large bins that held yarn. I’ve been wanting to redo it for a few years but had been holding off because I didn’t want to spend the money and, especially once Davy was born, I rarely had time to do anything crafty! Now that he’s older (and sleeping in his crib), I have more time to create things but was still putting it off.


Well, a few weeks ago, a generous friend came by to give me a big piece of IKEA furniture – I think it’s something they don’t make anymore, it looks like the old Hemnes except with 10 cubbies that are all the same size. It’s big, really big, and it didn’t really fit in the space we had. But I figured it would fit with a new sewing machine table and cutting table. So Gregg and I talked it over and I made a spreadsheet (yes really) costing out how much to make both a custom sewing table and cutting table and we were off and running. I don’t know the final cost since there were a couple of random trips to Home Depot in there to return one thing and buy another but it was probably between $300-$400. We had nearly all the tools necessary (borrowed a staple gun and a truck) so the cost was all materials. I was able to justify the cost by cashing in a whole bunch of credit card points so it was semi-free.

So, inspiration. I don’t know when or why I was even looking, but at least a year ago I ran across the DIY IKEA Sewing Table Tutorial on From Marta With Love, and I was totally inspired – I loved the idea of a custom table for cheap! But at the time, I still had my not-great starter machine and there just wasn’t a budget for any kind of redo. But I’d definitely been wanting to do this for awhile, and now was the time! Sadly I didn’t take any in-progress photos of this project.

My mods – for the sewing table, we didn’t bother with the pocket holes, just screwed the 2x2s in through the front and back rails. We also didn’t countersink the screws – we attached the 2x2s slightly lower than the top of the table so there is space for the bolts. My machine has a knee lift so we also drilled a hole for that. At some point I would like to paint it, but we knew we were having family visit soon and I wanted it to be presentable/functional when they arrived, not midway through the painting process.

What I would do differently – I traced the machine footprint directly onto the table before making the cut with the jigsaw and honestly, I didn’t do a great job. If I had to do it again, I would make a template on cardboard rather than directly tracing the machine. I’d also set up a piece of wood to act as a rail – my jigsaw kept fighting me, trying to go in a different direction. Gregg had to step in and finish the cutting, and the hole is bigger than it needed to be. Luckily it was salvageable, but there were tears.

(yeah, this is the same image in my other post)


Around the same time that I found the sewing table, I was poking around IKEA Hackers and ran across <a href=””>this project</a> and I was in total lust. I didn’t have any large surface to cut fabric on, so I either hauled my cutting mat, rotary cutter, rulers, and fabric upstairs to use the kitchen table (naturally, this was only possible while Davy was asleep) or, most of the time, I kneeled on the floor of the basement and cut my fabric like that. So I was really excited to have a new cutting surface. At some point, I decided I should add some fabric and batting so it would do double duty as a pressing table.

So my inspiration was much looser for this project. We used 2 KALLAX units (the replacement for EXPEDIT, but practically the same) and arranged them in an L shape, sandwiched between 2 pieces of melamine cut to 3ft by 4ft (we started with a 8ft x 4ft piece of melamine). We added 6 BESTA legs to give it some additional height – it’s 36″ tall, approximately counter height. We also found some iron-on melamine edging to finish the bottom edge with.


After attaching everything together, I sewed up a giant piece of frankenbatting to cover the unit and staple-gunned that in place. Then I added some ironing board fabric, and then some IKEA fabric on top of that.



The L-shaped arrangement means I have some storage space good for batting and fiberfill and other large items. I also added some KALLAX drawer inserts so that I could keep my sewing machine supplies handy and some DRONA boxes to store fabric and quilty WIPs in.


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Craft Room Redo

12 Mar

So I wrote this maybe 9 months ago and for some reason never posted it, but since I was commenting on another blog about redoing sewing areas I figured I’d better post it – better late than never!


Lots of exciting changes to my crafting area have occurred.

My husband surprised me with a new sewing machine for my birthday:

We made a design wall:

We got rid of the corner desk that was my old sewing area





More details on how we redid it next time!


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Magpie Fiber Socks and Scallop Bunting

23 Jan

Today I have my first knitted FO of 2015! These are socks I made my husband, from a new indie dyer local to me – Magpie Fibers. I went to her debut trunk show and was blown away by the gorgeous colors of her yarns, and I really like the base yarns she uses to dye. I went planning to get a few skeins of her Swish Worsted for another project. As we were talking about colors, she mentioned that she was trying to make sure she included good masculine colors that were not just a flat grey or blue, so I also picked up a skein of “All Along the Watchtower” in Swanky Sock to make a pair of socks for Gregg.



I had originally planned to modify a pattern that called for a multiple of 6 sts and so cast on 66. It was clear almost immediately that the pattern was fighting with the yarn so I ripped back, and since I didn’t want to redo the cuff I went with a simple k4p2 rib which I think shows off the yarn nicely.

I really liked the yarn and would definitely buy it again. Soft, nice stitch definition, generous yardage, great colors, and no knots/flaws in the skein. Gregg is also a fan of these socks – I usually try to block them but he wanted to wear them today.

This is also my first finish for the Q1 FAL.

I also have another sewing FO – as I mentioned, I’m doing the Curves class and I finished my Scallop Bunting project!

I was not planning to finish the whole project but once I got going, it was so easy and looked so good I didn’t want to stop!



I’m kind of sad I need to wait a whole year before I have an excuse to hang this up again.


Linking up with Amanda Jean at Finish it up Friday!


Christmas roundup

07 Jan

I had grand plans for Christmas this year, but some persistent ick in my house took it’s toll toward the end of the year. We all got sick mid-November and it was just one thing after another. We’ve been through an ear infection (Davy), sinus infections (Gregg and I), pinkeye for the whole house – once for Gregg and twice each for Davy and I! Davy doesn’t sleep or eat well when he’s feeling crummy, which meant Mama was up a bunch in the middle of the night and thus not inspired to wake up at 5AM to sew. A good lesson to me in planning though, and luckily we are all on the mend and none the worse for wear.

One of my goals for Christmas was a handmade gift for everybody. How did I do?

My mother-in-law and father-in-law got some socks I had fortuitously made earlier in the year:

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My poor husband got nothing – I started a pair of convertible mittens but didn’t get gauge and threw in the towel. It’s really hard to make projects for him in secret.

My son got some more handmade pillowcases, which I just realized I never posted about so I’ll throw all of them up here:


My sister got the Mod Sampler Quilt – yes, I did finish it (barely) – luckily she was so moved to tears that she didn’t notice my crappy quilting:

My mom got a finished quilt top – I might have been able to finish the quilt but I realized I didn’t have enough fabric for the backing and decided I’d wait on that and finish it later:


She also got a Snappy Manicure Wallet (minus the snaps, because I purchased the wrong snap fastener and so used velcro instead):

My sister’s best friend Kim joined us this year and she got two drawstring bags – one to use for projects and one filled with knitting notions like a tape measure, cable needles, stitch markers, point protectors, and teensy scissors:


I had big plans to make some things for my extended family but only my brother-in-law got something – I whipped up a very fast Soft Structure Cowl for him:


And I even started a quilted tree skirt for our tree!


So really, not too bad in the scheme of things but I’m hoping with some planning ahead I’ll do better next year.

Linking up with Lee for WIP Wednesday – I really do need to finish both Mom’s Winged Quilt and the Tree Skirt asap!

Also linking up with A Lovely Year of Finishes January 2015 goal party – though I’d love to finish both, Mom’s Winged Quilt is my January goal.


Unicorn bag Finished!

14 Nov

So that bag I showed off on Wed? It’s completed! I only needed one more evening of work to make the strap, add the magnetic closure (pro tip – do this before you attach the lining to the bag) and sew it all together. Here is is all assembled – the sides with the built in Unicorn pockets (they have the same fabric lining as the main bag):







And the lining with additional pockets on each side, one of which is a divided pocket:



I’m thrilled with how well this bag came out! There aren’t many changes I would make if I did a similar project – I’d probably cut the lining just a bit smaller so it didn’t have that bunchiness on the sides and I’d make sure to add in my magnetic closure first – it was really a pain trying to hand sew that in, especially doing the second side because the magnets kept grabbing each other.

It might be a bit on the large side – the final measurements came out to 12″ tall by 8″ wide – but those were somewhat constrained by the fussy-cut unicorns on the pockets, and it’s a nice deep bag for my niece to store her treasures in. I hope she loves it!




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Dog friendly FO

07 Nov

So I finished this project a little over a month ago but never posted, so here it is. I made my dog Sammie a custom harness! He’s 12 and has had recurring neck/back problems, and the vet recommended a harness for walks. We’ve tried to purchase one but Sammie is kind of a funny size – long and skinny – so it’s hard to find something that fits him well. My mom’s much smaller toy poodle has a custom fabric harness and I used it to pattern out a harness for Sammie.


Then Gregg and I looked through my stash and debated fabric choices. I wanted to use a single cut for the harness (rather than piecing together something) which meant I needed a 1/2 yard. I mostly stash FQs and didn’t have any half yards that we really liked, so off to the fabric store we went. We really wanted something with a small scale print and a darker background, to hide dirt. But we found something so perfect we had to get it – Dr. Seuss fabric that had “Sam I Am” printed all over it. Problem – it was white! Solution – dye the fabric! So we got a packet of fabric dye and I overdyed it (along with some stained onesies and the liner fabric).


So here are the harness pieces – Kona Black, some random canvas-y fabric as the lining, and the overdyed Sam I Am fabric on the top. I used a fabric glue stick to attach some grosgrain ribbon to twill tape, and stuck that over the D ring (purchased at Home Depot in the hardware section) and sewed it down – I used my zipper foot which let me get really close to the D ring to secure it. I zigzagged the velcro down – I’m using the kind meant for cloth diapers since I know it has a good hold and holds up well to washing. Then I made some bias binding and attached that. I have a little bunching around the curves but for my first time making and working with bias binding and doing a completely machine-attached binding I think I did pretty good. I used heavy-duty thread for all the stitching – I used a topstitch needle and I think I had only one thread break, which is pretty good considering I was sewing through velcro plus multiple layers of fabric plus the binding.


And it fits him!  Sad to say this is the first thing I’ve ever made him (no, I’ve never knit or crocheted him a sweater) but I think this is something that will be useful. If it keeps us from having another several hundred dollar vet bill it’s definitely worth the effort!


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