Sunday, April 21, 2013

Basket For My Clothespins

My washroom is in the process of receiving an overhaul and much needed face lift. I've got some nice new shelves for this and that, a really nice cabinet from Ikea for dirty clothes and such so I felt I really needed something prettier than my current zip lock bag for my clothespins.

I've had my eye on this adorable basket pattern from Sweetwater for a few years but never really had any use for such a pretty basket until now =) So I happily purchased it and used some leftover jelly roll strips of Twirl by Me & My Sister combined with some black Kona. I think it turned out really sweet.

Instead of  putting the batting on the outside pieces through I put it on the lining to get a less baggy inside and make it easy to get to the last few pins at the bottom. I also used Pellon Thermolam instead of the suggested cotton batting for a smoother look and feel. I'm really happy with the outcome! Really fun basket to make and I'm once again back to my ruffle obsession I fear...

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Baby Boy Baby Shower Gifts

One of my friends is having a little baby boy and the baby shower is today.
To start with, I made a little quilt of course! I made this top at a quilt retreat a few years back and it's been lying around as an UFO ever since then. It really was perfect for this gift! It was meant as a wall hanging to begin with - as it's still today the most advanced thing I've ever sewn with those Y seams! But as I don't have much space in our little apartment - I figured I'd better put it to good use as a baby blocks quilt where it will be used and hopefully loved then to leave it waiting for more wall space to hang it. I cut it down as it was a bit to long and then added the border for a little width and framing.

I free motion quilted the feather borders and I really love how it came out, feathers are so much fun to quilt! I wanted badly to add more quilting, outlining of the feathers, a little embellishment in them and more quilting in the cubes but I didn't want it to feel stiff so I refrained, after a long discussion with myself.  =)

I also made a Sushi-Roll Changing Pad and Diaper & Wipes Pouch, tutorial can be found here. Really awesome little kit I think, perfect to keep packed and stacked near the door for when you're just going out for a little while and don't want to bring the whole changing bag maybe?  Or to keep as a pretty kit in the changing bag? Sandra, my friend have a lovely and quite romantic style in the summer so I hope she'll like the fabric I chose for the outside. However, as she is having a boy, I had to choose a more manly spot fabric for the inside of the bag and the upside of the pad =)

It felt really weird to go shopping for diapers and wet wipes to fill this with XD

All wrapped up and ready to go!

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Easter Eggs Become Quilt Inspiration

Easter passed by in a scary blur of work combined with more work. But I did have some time to play around and color Easter eggs for the Easter lunch at our friends house. I was in charge of deviled eggs among other things, so I ended up spicing them up a little with fancy patterns. Found the tutorial for them here, very easy to do and such a fancy result.

I felt that the combo of yellow-green, dark blue and white in that bowl was so pretty that I just had to go and pick out fabrics for a quilt in the same color scheme! It's for a baby quilt I'm planing on doing. =D Inspiration comes from the weirdest places doesn't it? Had some help from my trusty sewing student Tova with the choices, she's been here and sewed her final item for year 9 which I will blog about shortly.

It was an amazing feeling! This was the first time I've ever been able to choose all the fabrics for a quilt from my stash, and I've never been so excited! Such an awesome thing that I immediately decided to gift myself an increase in my Stash Stack Club subscription to 12 FQ each month as my birthday present this year =D

Friday, March 29, 2013

FMQ Feather Border & Stash Stack Club

I have been quilting a little when I haven't been able to sleep from cough. A very special little quilt this, but since it's going to be a gift, I don't want to show the whole thing until it's been gifted. But I'll tell you I'm loving this quilt and it will be really hard to part from it. After some practice I decided to go for FMQ feathers for the borders, all thanks to the help of the December tutorial from the FMQ Challenge, by Patsy Thompson.

It's not perfect but 100% freehand, the only marking I did was a line for the start and end and middle where the feathers meet and I'm super happy with the result of my first FMQ feather border =)

The brilliance of painters tape when quilting borders!
The painters tape was a new thing on my side, I hate quilting the borders because they tend to bunch up, get stuck and just be generally tricky to hold down nice and flat. With the tape I could mark off what would be hidden by the binding and at the same time tape the top to the batting to ensure I could easily quilt it all while it stayed in place. I will always tape the outside edges of my quilts before doing border designs from now on, makes life so much easier! =)


A little belated but I naturally received my Stash Stack Club for January & February =)

January was purple and all the fabrics where just so yummy! Delish! <3 My favorite is the second one from the bottom, Orchid Citadel - Cuzco by Kate Spain tightly followed by the top print, Leafy Stripe in Eggplant - Simply Color.

For February there was blue on the menu, some where oh so lovely - but I wasn't a fan of the bottom two. They felt like "grandma fabrics" (not judging my grandma here, she has fantastic taste, just your "typical grandma") with the yellowish white contrast and washed out look, not my cup of tea. I have to say, after 8 months I've receivd 2 fabrics that I didn't really fancy - this club is awesome! =D

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Interfacing Free Storage Basket

After our IKEA order I need storage baskets for our new shelves in the bathroom (sadly only half of the shelf was in stock so it hasn't been assembled fully yet, but enough so I could try out baskets ^^). After looking at a number of different options I found a tutorial one over at Jezze Prints that sounded perfect, no interfacing needed and still washable as the cardboard was removable. Brilliant!

I cut into some of my beloved Tula Pink the Birds & the Bee's fabric for this as it was the perfect shade of purple/plum for the bathroom decor and I just LOVE the outcome!

I had some small difficulties knowing what was what in the tutorial so if you want to make your own, the small piece (at the top in the pattern piece image) is the bottom piece, which is dark gray in my version and visible here. The Bee fabric on the outside is the rectangular piece.

And the Lazy Stripe is the middle (biggest) lining piece in the pattern. 

I also wanted a cardboard bottom for mine to make it perfectly rigid. But I wasn't interested in adding even more pieces to this so instead of sewing the bottom piece (grey) to the lining piece around the top as suggested in the pattern, I sewed it only in the seams at the sides as suggested in version two. Then when all was stitched together (as you can see I did the side seams as in version one anyway) you can measure your bottom (mine was 15x15 cm) and cut a piece of cardboard that size. Fold the cardboard once in the middle, stick it in between the two lining pieces (this will make sense once you have your own basket before you) before adding the edge cardboard, unfold it and have a hard, cardboard bottom too, not just sides. The bottom piece  is removable too - just like the sides for washing. =)

Saturday, March 23, 2013

My Sewing Room & IKEA Hack - Benno DVD Tower as Fabric Storage

We made an order for some stuff from IKEA  a while back and I ordered two Benno DVD towers, and one Billy Olsbo glass door. We screwed the towers together and added the door (fits perfectly!) and voila, one super cheap, perfect fabric storage shelf with dust cover! When folded over my ruler, fat quarters and half yards fit perfectly in the little shelves! I'm so happy to finally have my little stash out of the plastic boxes so I can actually see what I have!

Makes it so much easier to use the fabrics and they're such an inspiration when you walk into the room. They're not deep, which leaves me with a bit of floor space for laying out quilts which is much needed in my little sewing- (or "guest-" as my fiance insists on calling it) room. ! =)
Aren't the fabrics just so gorgeous all neatly piled and color sorted?

As my little stash is missing a few colors yet, I had lots of fun decorating the empty shelves a little for now. The bumblebees and the flowers are made by my amazing mother.

My shiny and nice quilting threads and my little guardian angel, also a gift from my dear mom. <3

And I even have room for one more next to it for the future, if my stash ever outgrows this one.

It also gave me the opportunity to clear out my previous stash shelf, I'm not going to show you before pictures but if you want a picture, imagine my sewing room throwing up all over this poor shelf ^^ In the future, I'd really love to exchange this and the table for something white...

Previously I had all my threads tossed in a box, it was hard to find what I wanted and get an overview of what I had so I modified this pretty box with little cardboard pieces to keep them neatly sorted and prevent them from rolling around. It's the black one at the bottom of the middle shelf in the photo above. Pretty, pretty colors!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

The only use my poor quilt rulers have seen lately...

... is as wallpapering tools :(

We've been super busy lately, we're redesigning one of our games and it's taking all our time, all work and no quilting for me. We stole some time one day a few days ago to redecorate our home a little by adding some wallpaper.Walls here in Malta are 99% of the cases always just a bright white, it's a very depressing, hospital like feeling so we decided to go for some wallpaper on a couple of walls to get a more homey, inspirational work and living environment. An awesome move if I may say so myself. =)

We did however choose some seriously difficult wallpapers to put up, they where terrible work to get to match up perfectly.

Love the wallpaper we chose for the bedroom, it's a purple python pattern, sounds horrible I know but so much fun, you can't help but smile when you enter our bedroom now and it actually works really great I think. Can't wait to have time to design a purple quilt to go with it. I have the design all sketched up, just no time to actually make it... Will try and get some nice pictures of the finished areas once I have had time to clean.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Stash Stack Club & Sew Solids Crew Stash Club!

Today I got my first stack from Sew Solids Crew Stash Club, it's so pretty and is simply adorably packed! <3

I'm not sure which is which color but my favourite is the top one for sure! It is all beautiful colors but I have to admit I'm just a little disappointed that I didn't receive the ones listed on the blog for this month. According to the blog I was supposed to get Kona Hibiscus, Dk Violet, Amethyst, Cerise, Orchid & Lavender and instead I got Eggplant, Tulip, Lavender, Amethyst, Plum and Petunia. I also would have loved to know which is which color, maybe with some little sticker on each FQ or something? 

This months Stash Stack Club was brown and it's normally really not my color but these where really quite pretty, my favourite is the top one, Tiny Diamonds in Brown - Town and Country (Dear Stella).

These stash clubs are sooo much fun! =D

Other then that I've actually been stealing a little time to quilt which has been so much fun! I hope to have my Chameleon Quilt quilted and bound soon! =)

Friday, December 21, 2012

Pillows finished and preparing for Christmas

My pillows are finally finished! Remember, the Drunkards Path blocks I made for the March and April FMQ Challenge? They're the ones I've finally, nearly a  year later have completed =)

Close-up, I had so much fun quilting these!

Diana loves them, they're constantly all black with her hair... Maybe not the brightest choice of fabric in hindsight. ^^

The Free Motion Quilting Challenge I failed miserably through. This year has really kicked my behind work wise and I haven't had much time for my hobbies. Which is really sad as I don't feel as happy as I normally do when I don't have time to create, I have to try to take more me time next year. But I did learn a lot from it and I really hope SewCalGal will let the tutorials remain even next year so maybe I can complete the rest then.


I had the girls over for some drinks and girl talk the other day and had a lot of fun making Christmas themed snacks without making them taste christmasy as I suspected we'll all prefer to look forward to eating Christmas stuff in the upcoming few days. It's a little Christmas tree! ^^ With the tree I served dip and some other really tasty snacks like the "Christmas Tree Ornaments" honey, goats cheese and pistachio truffles, they where yum! =)

I also had tons of fun Christmas decorating the apartment a few days ago, dressing our adorable little Christmas trees with Diana watching my every move carefully as those little lights are oh so pretty she think. Will try to show them all done later tonight when you can see how pretty they are with their lights.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Cutting corners isn't necessarily a bad thing

I was sewing up some pillows for the couch (that I started 6 or so months ago...) late last night and was cursing like crazy when the darn machine got stuck in a little seam as I was attaching the double fold binding. I cursed  quite loudly about the bloody thing needing service and continued sewing without thinking much more about it until I was done and stung myself on the reason for the machine getting stuck:

Very well sewn down was a green needle I apparently had forgotten to remove in my sleep deprived state ^^

My first mistake that night however later turned into awesome lesson was when I was cutting the binding, After cutting up my fat quarter I realized after cutting that I'd cut it to slim. Anyway, decided to wing it anyway and try to make it work (the way you  think seem like an excellent thing do at two at night, while you during the day just would have cut your losses and just cut up a new strips).

When I got to the corner I realized there was no way I'd be able to make it fold neatly over the corner with that little fabric, which is when I decided to try and cut off the corner to make it work. Which was such a brilliant idea if I may say so myself, thanks dear brain! Maybe this is something everyone already does so if I'm late to the party forgive me, but for me it was a pure "Eureka!" moment! I will now always cut of the corners of my quilts before folding over double fold binding, the corners where so easy to get neat!

Look how pretty they came! I mean, I can generally get a very decent result with a bit of hassle, but this was so easy peasy to get them that perfectly even! Front:

And back (and yes dear mum, you're seeing this right - I'm actually hand sewing this one, I'm feeling very grown up  ^^)

Will hopefully be done with the binding tomorrow so I can show you them completed, I'm not very fast with the hand sewing so even a little pillow is a big project for me in that area.