Button Jars quilt

Ta-dah! This little one is finished! I started this quilt a year ago, as a part of a course with Me and My Sister Designs. Despite my good intentions towards it, it didn’t see much progress for months, until I moved the project’s box next to my sewing machine and used it as a leader-and-ender. It looks like it was all I needed to get it done! The pattern is pretty straightforward, and with all the pieces already cut, it can be pieced in no time.

After some thought, I decided to keep the quilting simple and just stitch in the ditch around each jar, the shelves and the border. I didn’t press all the seams open, and you can tell the difference between these and the seams pressed to one side when you’re trying to quilt in the ditch (the first ones are easier!). This quilt surely would have benefited from a denser quilting motif, but neither my FMQ skills nor my machine would have allowed for it with a satisfactory result.

Trying to keep consistent with the fabric line, I chose for the border a pink print from Cotton+Steel, and I stepped outside my comfort zone with the binding. But it just seemed the right colour when I audited it, and now I think it was the perfect choice.

I’m using this quilt as a wall hanging for my sewing area. I sewed two small pockets on the back to hold a thin curtain bar, but after hanging it, I think a sleeve would have been better… just to keep in mind for the next one.

Project: Button Jars (Wall hanging quilt)
Size: 81 x 71 cm / 32 x 28″
Date: April 2016 – April 2017
Pattern: Button Jars, Me and My Sister Designs
Top fabric: Dot. Dot. Dash-, by Me and My Sister Designs (selected prints), for Moda Fabrics
White: Bella Solids White Bleached, Moda Fabrics
Taupe: Bella Solids Stone light grey, Moda Fabrics
Grey: Bella Solids Silver grey, Moda Fabrics
Border: Netorious Melody Pink, by Alexia Abbeg, Cotton+Steel
Batting: Quilter’s Dream Cotton 100%
Quilting: machine-quilted, Isacord Thread 40, col. 0010
Binding: 1000 Colors Collection
Purple (713), Lecien
Label: Bomull, Ikea

(Easy) Table runner

This year Moda Fabrics is running a 12-month contest, featuring a different designer each month. March is turn for Me and My Sister Designs, and I couldn’t resist to take a break from all the quilting that’s going around here and spend some afternoons working on the featured pattern, a table runner.

One of the requisites for entering is that all the fabric used must be from Moda (that makes sense, doesn’t it?). I do have several collections and prints from Moda in my stash, but I decided to play with a Moda Scrap Bag and just go with what was inside (this bag contains left-overs from cutting other pre-cuts, and there’s no way to know what’s inside each one… it’s a lottery!). So, in a sense, I didn’t choose the fabrics for this one… I added some Grunge as a contrasting solids, and a favourite from Zen Chic for the border.

For piecing the strips together, I cut them ½” longer than required, and alternated the direction of sewing (one up, one down) to avoid ending with a curved piece. I broke the main panel into three sections, sewed each one, trimmed to size, and the sewed them together. It worked quite well!

It’s a pretty quick project (I managed to have it completed in four afternoons, quilting included!), and I really like this summer-ly look it has (the weather also helps in that feeling…). It makes me think of picnics with sandwiches…

Project: Table runner
Size: 16″ x 50″/ 40.5 x 127 cm
Date: March 2017
Pattern: Easy Table Runner, Me and My Sister Designs
Top fabric: Coral, Queen of the Sea, by Stacy Iest Tsu, for Moda Fabrics
                  Grunge (several colours), by Basic Grey, for Moda Fabrics
Border, Backing: Hey Dot!, by Zen Chic, for Moda Fabrics
Batting: Fusible Thermolam TP971, Legacy
Quilting: machine-quilted, Star Thread 30WT

Christmas gifts for a knitter

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This past Christmas’ sewing involved a special gift for a friend who, among other crafty things, is a passionate knitter. And when this sheep fabric appeared on the quilt-shop, I knew I had to do something with it.

So, I planed to sew something useful! The “2 Fat Quarter Bucket!”, by Me and My Sister Designs, has become a favorite when it comes to sewing useful things. Fast, easy and versatile. And it showcases the fabric, which is also important! (other buckets are here and here).

And to pair it with something else, I had had my focus on this open-wide pouch by Anna Graham (Noodlehead) for a long time, and I thought it could be of use for a knitter. The yarn-balls fabric from Cotton+Steel is just the perfect lining, isn’t it?

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This one took some thought, however. Zippers and I aren’t good friends, and my first interfacing choice didn’t work quite well.

Now they have been delivered and I hope being enjoyed by their new owner!

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Project: Bucket
Size: 6″W x 4 1/2″L x 7″H / 15 x 11.5 x 18 cm
Date: December 2016
Pattern: 2 Fat Quarter Bucket!, Me and My Sister Designs
Exterior fabric: Wool Ewe Be Mine, Maria Kalinowsky for Kanvas Studio, Bernatex
Lining fabric: Reel Time, Zen Chic, Moda Fabrics
Batting: Thermolam TP971 (100% polyester), Legacy

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Project: Open-wide zippered pouch
Size: Medium (9″ tall x 12″ wide)
Date: December 2016
Pattern: Open-wide zippered pouch, Anna Graham (Noodlehead)
Exterior fabric: Wool Ewe Be Mine, Maria Kalinowsky for Kanvas Studio, Bernatex
Denim fabric, unknown manufacturer
Lining fabric: Cat Lady, Sarah Watts, Cotton+Steel
Batting: Heavy interfacing, unknown manufacturer

Ongoing projects: November update

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November has been a busy month, and I haven’t get done all that I had hoped to, mostly because I have begun new projects that weren’t on the original to-do list for this month.

– The Stars-quilt is progressing really slowly. I need to spend more time on this one if I want to have the top ready to be quilted for September next year.

Stars basted: 84/84 (504/504 templates)
Stars sewn: 84 /84
Background pieces basted: 504/504
Stars completed: 12/84 (+5 from the last stats)

– My second knitting project, a top, is advancing at a particular pace: one step ahead, two behind. I’m working on the neck, and I think it’s the third time I’m knitting the same rows… (so much fun to be a beginner!).

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– I jumped in a sew along hosted at We All Sew, the Sugarplum table runner by Faith Jones (Fresh Lemons Quilts). I had been thinking about a new table runner for the Christmas season and I absolutely loved that one! Not that I hadn’t enough projects on my table… For this one, I’m using mostly fabric I already had, which feels just fantastic. At the moment I have to finish the second set of blocks and put the top together. And quilt it….

– The Buttons quilt from the Buttons and Thread pattern by Me and My Sister Designs has seen some progress. It looks like the only thing I needed to do was to have it near my sewing machine. I had it cut and ready to go as a leaders-and-enders project, but hadn’t work on it… until I moved the box from the shelves to the table. So happy about that!

– Christmas sewing: now I need to hurry on these if I want them delivered this year.

The Splendid Sampler is up-to-date (not the blogging part of it, though), as well as the Star-sampler by Amanda Rolfe at 3and3quarters. Fortunately, this one has a relaxed release schedule, so I can easily keep up. And the BoM by Cotton&Color is coming to and end, and it looks like the assembling won’t be a piece of cake…

Another bucket

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I already told I was planning a second bucket from the pattern “2 Fat Quarter Bucket!”, by Me and My Sister Designs, and here it is. This one was for a friend who recently had a baby… I just love those turtles!

This pattern makes for terrific gifts… surely this won’t be the last one!

Project: Bucket
Size: 5 1/2″W x 4″L x 7″H / 14 x 10 x 18 cm
Date: July 2016
Pattern: 2 Fat Quarter Bucket!, Me and My Sister Designs
Exterior fabric: Les Amis (Turtle Parade), Patty Sloniger, Michael Miller Fabrics
Lining fabric: Comma (chalk on mustard), Zen Chic, Moda Fabrics
Batting: Thermolam TP971 (100% polyester), Legacy

The Splendid Sampler™: Block 40

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Block n. 40 for The Splendid SamplerFlights of Friendship, designed by Barb Groves and Mary Jacobson (Me and My Sister Designs) surely brought a smile, as I had the (amazing) opportunity to get to know Barb and Mary when I attended one of their classes. Not only for this, but also for the little history behind the block… I also got to know some wonderful quilters!

For the block itself, I had trouble getting matching points and seams, and this brings me back to the pressing issue I mentioned sometime ago. After some time without using it, I went back to work with my little travel iron, and I think the poor pressing the little iron can provide is one of the main reasons of some of the misshapen seams. The other being that it seems I still have a long way to go before working comfortable with HST. I must remember that I’m working on the bias, so extra care should be taken.

I just love the block. I’m already planning a bigger quilt made with it…

While I decide to stay on track with all that is currently on my table, other versions and the block info are found here.

A bucket

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This little bucket had been on my to-do list since I got the pattern, “2 Fat Quarter Bucket!”, by Me and My Sister Designs. It looks easy, and it really is! I think I spent like an hour to put it all together, and the results are fantastic. This one comes pretty handy to store my first attempt at knitting (the top of the yarn skein is barely visible), so, what is more appropriate, than a fabric with little, cute sheep?

This fabric is a Japanese print, and the lining is from a fat quarter gifted by the friend who taught me the basics of knitting.

The pattern calls for Décor-Bond 809, but I didn’t have and couldn’t find any, so I used the interfacing I already had at hand. Turned out it was not fusible, but nothing that a double-fusible strip from Ikea could not do (I laid several strips to secure the batting to the fabric). I think this interfacing worked really well, as the bucket stays almost perfectly straight.

I’m already planning making another one, this one to be given… and with a more appropriate interfacing!

Project: Bucket
Size: 6″W x 4 1/2″L x 7H / 15 x 11.5 x 18 cm
Date: June 2016
Pattern: 2 Fat Quarter Bucket!, Me and My Sister Designs
Exterior fabric: Japanese print, Kokka (?)
Lining fabric: Pascal et Beatrix Tissus
Batting: Thermolam TP970 (100% polyester), Legacy ; Bounding fusible strip, Ikea

What I’m working on…. and Stars-quilt stats

There’s a lot going behind the scenes these days. I’ve though I will post about it so I don’t feel I’m not accomplishing anything just because there’s no specific finish to share. And because this is also part of the journey, and I like to see how things have progressed when I look back to previous post. That being said, let’s go:

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– I finally found the time to work on the Jelly Roll quilt from the class with Me and My Sister Designs. I unpicked the part that was already put together (and that didn’t match), and now the first quarter of the quilt is finished, with all the seams matching as they were supposed to do. And I finished to add the triangle-corners to all the basic pieces… this is how they look like, ready to be trimmed and pressed. Chain-piecing is just wonderful.

– I worked also on the pattern “Buttons & Thread”, from the same class. To this moment it’s all already cut for the “Buttons” pattern, and ready to be used as a leader-and-ender project.

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– I also finished the second pair of the “Makin’it Cute” mitten templates. And I have already decided to convert these two into a bunting, or just make a bunting from scratch and keep these for the Christmas tree… Well, I’ve decided I’m going to make a bunting. I need to buy some fabric, though.

– I’ve finished one project that was due this June! On time! I’ll share it once it’s given to its recipient.

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– Some more work on the Stars-quilt. The updated statistics are:

Stars basted: 84/84 (504/504 templates)
Stars sewn: 84 /84
Background pieces basted: 245/504 (+59 from the last stats)
Stars completed: 0

– And last but not least, for The Splendid Sampler™ : block n.31 is one of those that need to run on the slow lane, just to get the most of it (my embroidery skills are growing at an incredible pace with this sampler!). So moving to the next blocks meanwhile.

I’m glad to see some progress on the “long run” projects. It helps keeping motivation high!

 

Pillowcases

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These pillowcases were part of the two-day course I took with Me and My Sister Designs, and were in the washing-stage when I blogged about it. This pattern couldn’t be more easy and quick to make… it takes more time to cut the fabric than actually sewing it! The pattern is available in their website  and they have a video tutorial with the Fat Quarter Shop teaching the technique (it’s really surprising how this pillow case is built up!).

As always, the most difficult part was to select the fabric… I knew I wanted black, white and red. And there’s nothing like to have time to spend in the fabric-shop and browse between bolts and bolts until a decision is made: the main fabric, Reel Time by Zen Chic (love it!); the cuff fabric, Styl Mod by Style Par Mo, laid just there, ready to be picked up; and what else could be the accent fabric than this gorgeous red print by Cotton&Steel?

So, now that they have been cleaned and tumble-dried they have been put into use and look gorgeous in my bed! Love to make such fun projects!

Project: Pillowcases
Size: 20″ x 31″ / 53.5 x 76 cm (aprox)
Date: April, 2016
Pattern: Dilly Dally Pillowcase, Me and My Sisters Designs
Exterior fabric: Reel Time pattern #1565 , by Zen Chic for Moda Fabrics
                          Styl Mod by Style Par Mo , Newcastle Fabrics
                          Mesa (Fall 2014), Cotton + Steel Fabrics

A class with Me and My Sister Designs!

The blog has been really quiet this week, and for a good reason: I participated in a class with Me and My Sister Designs! This incredible experience included a two-day class and a trunk show, both filled with laughs, surprises, lots of little details and, of course, fabric (tons of fabric!). The whole event was held in Cotton&Color, and included the trunk show, one two-day class with jelly-rolls, and a second one with charm packs (which I couldn’t attend).

And I must say Barb and Mary are so amazing! The class was based on working with their “Wild Jelly Rolls 3 & 4” patterns; in my case, the n.3, but there was more on it that one could have expected! Little and not so little projects pop-up, and now it’s time to recap all of what was done in just two days and that now needs to be finished:

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– The main project, Wild Jelly Rolls n.3, needs some seam ripper to get to finish a quarter of it, but it’s all already cut for the main blocks and ready to go! I’m using their newest collection, Grow! I may use it as a leader-and-ender project when not working directly on it.

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– You can not say “no” when you’re being offered a charm pack of Dot.Dot.Dash-! and the pattern “Buttons & Thread” that matches it perfectly. These little jars come together in no time, so I’m planing to have some of them cut beforehand so I can piece them in spare time between other projects or as a secondary bonus project…

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– I have to finish the second mitten from the “Makin’it Cute” templates. A kit with all the necessary to made a pair of them was gifted to the class participants (the fabrics are from Sweetwater’s “Holy’s Tree farm” collection, for Moda). There are so many possibilities with these templates that my brain is already burning thinking in Christmas gifts (and we are not yet in Summer!).

– I have already finished another side project that it’s on the washing stage… and that was amazingly easy for the high-looking end result! To be shared in short time with its proper entry.

I did not only learn tons of new things and surely improved my piecing, but I had so much fun and got the opportunity to get to know really talented and wonderful people, including some other quilters working in The Splendid Sampler too!