Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Super Small piecing fun

As promised! I've been working on some more patterns.  I love the "bean pot" block from the "Civil War Legacies Quilt Patterns for Reproduction Fabrics" book by Carol Hopkins.  But i wanted to add a little twist to an already small block. So I changed out the center solid square with a paper pieced star that I came up with.  I'll add the free pattern for the star here.

I only made 3 mistakes, not carefully placing my fabric on the correct side of the line and then using the wrong color 2 times.  Otherwise, I'm pretty happy with how everything matched up.  It's funny how such a little block (finished size was about 2" square) can take a while to put together.  Though, I do enjoy the almost certainty that my points will meet perfection with paper piecing.

Enjoy! If you make one, please feel free to share, of if you have recommendations on tweaking, let me know too. I'm new to this pattern making stuff.

Monday, June 9, 2014

adventures in sewing

It's been a while yet again.  I have actually been wonderfully busy with my family, my orders and life.  I just wanted to write while I was inspired to share.

I recently joined my very first swap hosted by Schnitzel & Boo I've done most of my posting on Instagram, made many new friends ( #makeaquiltmakeafriend ) and I've been inspired so much that I think about sewing 24/7.  I see patterns everywhere now, whether it is taking the kiddos to the glorious beaches, walking around the neighborhood or enjoying the afternoon in the back yard.  I wonder to myself how I can recreate such beauty through fabric manipulation. Combine that desire with all the lovely paper pieced blocks I have been seeing pop up in my Instagram newsfeed, I decided to conquer an intimidation block I've had.

I have always skipped over paper pieced instructions in books and magazines I browse through.  But how do we expect to grow if we do not overcome our fears?  I decided it was time to try paper piecing for myself.  I found a very quick youtube video that gave me the basic understanding of what to do for paper piecing here thanks be to "theCraftyGemini" for giving me the initial confidence that this too I can do!!!   I made 2 peak-a-book blocks based on her tutorial.

 I tried a sweet hummingbird pattern I saw in my quilting magazine but I messed up dreadfully and almost discouraged myself from continuing.  I decided I need something slightly more difficult but not too complicated and that's when I happened across the "Basketweave" star pattern from Add-Crafter.  I loved it! I posted on my IG schnitzel and boo swap hashtags and I got some wonderful feedback and the confidence builder that I needed to keep giving this a try.

Yet again, excited and wanting more I searched for my favorite pattern that I have wanted for so long yet never had the confidence that I too could do this.  I wanted the flying geese pattern but I wanted to do something slightly different.  First attempt, I do not remember where I got the tutorial for this one  but I thought I'd like to try it to eventually make a colorwheel sort of mini quilt for my Mom's art studio.  

But I wanted to go one step more. I wanted a different looking flying geese pattern and that's when I found the amazingly talented Pat from ForestQuilting.  She has the most lovely flying geese pattern in her free section, it's called "Chasing geese."  Really not tricky but when you print out the pattern it seems a little complicated at first but clear your mind, go with the flow and it WILL turn out beautifully! 

I made such a small version of Pat's pattern that I had to decide what to do with it. Well, a zippy of course! What else does one do with something too whimsical to stash away??  You can find the zippy for sale here.

And so, this little adventure brings me to the here and now.  I've just recently go into this fun method of quilting.  But I want to do something truly my own so I'm experimenting now with making paper piecing patterns.  My first 2 patterns are created by me but totally inspired but stuff I saw on Pinterest.  I came up with a pattern for a fox and a pattern for a raccoon.  I absolutely LOVE them.  I also started creating patterns for the alphabet which I will offer for free once I finish, so please check back and be sure to share! So until I am ready to share some pattern goodness with you, have a wonderfully creative day.  

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Last of the Party Preps, today is the big day!

I finally finished the last of the party preps today, a tower of cupcakes with toothpicks covered in washi tape formed into flags.   An imperfect chocolate birthday cake covered in icing and perfect M&M's thanks to Pinterest and this wonderful blog of ideas from Sweet Ideas Blog (though hers is MUCH more gorgeous, I love the pastel colors she used).  And finally some marshmallows smothered in melted white chocolate and adorned with heart sprinkles, idea from Glorious Treats!

The real test starts in 1 more hour, here's hoping the girls have a lot of fun and the treats all taste yummy.

Art themed Birthday Party

Marshmallows dipped and sprinkled, funny face photo props!

Imperfect chocolate cake with perfect M&M's

The paints and flowers

The cupcake tower!

Marshmallows in a mason jar filled with conversational hearts.  

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Party Prep's

Big day is almost upon us.  Technically I have 1 more day to go to pull off this Art themed party for my oldest daughter.  She's excited, as am I.  Hoping that the girls will have a lot of fun.

To make the day a little special, I made each girl the art rolls (Which I made a tutorial for here) and I finally finished up aprons that each girl will get to take home after they use it to protect their clothing while creating their masterpieces.

For some added pizazz I created funny facial features for the girls to cover their faces for some funny photo shoots.  I made these with cardstock and just hand drew each piece, attached it to a wooden dowel with some glue. Hoping that they stay.  Until next time, stay creative friends!

Monday, February 3, 2014

Fiber arts

Not much to say today, other than it feels good to get a little sewing in while the clouds let loose and water our trees and flowers.  Little guy spent some time with his friend this morning which allowed me the opportunity to finish up another seahorse and take better pictures than an iPhone will allow.

These creatures are all probably going on bags/totes but I'm thinking of making some to put on headbands.  How unique would that be?

I love how the black free motion stitching makes the creatures pop.  The color is fun to figure out but it's the stitching that really brings everything together.  I even enjoy looking on the otherside of each creature as the stitching without color remind me of many wonderful tangled drawings/illustrations I admire.

I'll post again when the creatures find their new homes, be it on what it may, bags, pouches or headbands! Have a wonderfully creative day!

Monday, January 27, 2014

Triangle like pencil pouch Tutorial

My never ending search of trying to figure things out. I love little pencil pouches (and big ones too!) and I have always loved the ones that form a triangle on the side.  So today, I am sharing with you a mostly picture tutorial on how to make this cute zippered pouch. I obviously would change the direction of my fabric since one side is now upside down, but lesson learned!

To start, you'll need 2 pieces of fabric, interfacing (I always use this for my bags, it adds some stiffness and form) coordinating thread, 11" zipper, scissors and a sewing machine.

You will make a hexagon shape with both the interior and exterior fabrics, if you want to use my measurements be sure you overall zipper length is no shorter than 11"

Next, I divided the fabric to make the zipper installation easier

Time to attach your zipper, be sure to pin down about 1/4 of an inch at the end to make a wide opening.

Do not top stitch but definitely press the fabric and repeat on the other side, we will top stitch at the very end.  It should look something like this once you have both sides attached to the zipper. Once again, pin the zipper out of the way so it doesn't get caught up in the side stitches.

Sew up the sides of both interior and exterior fabrics and the bottom of the exterior fabric

Make sure to line up the seams, mark off the triangle and stitch across, this will form that boxy shape at the bottom of the pouch. Repeat on both corners of the exterior fabric.

Turn right side out, and finish closing up the bottom of the interior fabric.  And now it's time to top stitch around the pouch. I take off my attached table and just use the smaller throat for this part.

And to complete the look, add a little bit of fabric to the end of the zipper that is exposed.  You can fold in for a more finished looked but I like the pinking scissor cut look for this bag.  Make sure NOT to stitch over the little metal stop, it WILL break your needle and possibly damage your machine (I wont admit anything!)

And there you have it my crafty friends, a cute triangle-ish shaped pencil pouch! Because the zipper comes out from one end, the opening is larger than normal and with the dimensions I provided, you can definitely fill this bag with a lot of goodies! 

If you like how yours turned out, please share!  I am not expert at sewing, just obsessed with making cute and sometimes functional things so if you see something that needs improvement, please let me know too. I always like to learn new things. :)

Until next time, stay busy crafting!

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Pouches and bags

Gradually finding inspiration.  As I complete (or start) each project and it turns out, I feel another ounce of inspiration. I always find that going on a trip, having visitors or busy weeks with the kiddos really can put me into a creative rut for quite some time.  Then I get this antsy feeling to create something and if it doesn't turn out like I envision in my head, well, that just pulls me further into a rut.  I have had a few projects turn out and I just wanted to share. I know looking at other's projects fill me with inspiration and I hope to do the same for you!

I love the way my Sweet as Honey art tote turned out.  My bees are hand drawn, painted and then free motion stitched and appliqued onto my tote bag.

The tassel was inspired by a fellow IG user. Wanted to give it a try on one of my pieces and I love the added dimension and another way to bring all the colors together.

My next project was a house pouch. When I made these a few months ago they were a big hit on my facebook page so I thought i would try it again and do a little more FMS on this one.  Pretty Whimsical results.

I've been wanting to figure out how to make a pouch with one end of the zipper on the exterior of the bag and I'm happy to report I figured it out this morning! And, with this project I used up another Kokka fabric I have been hoarding for some time. 

And finally, on the subject of hoarding, I have held on to some fabrics for much too long. I decided to make a fabric basket to use up some of it and though there has been much interest in purchasing this particular basket, I love the Pink Kokka fabric so much that I just cannot part with this basket and i have decided to keep it near my crafting area to hold fabrics and inspirational books.  

Until next time, happy sewing friends!