Monday, August 31, 2009

Star ornaments again

Having abandoned my original design plan, I read through some quilting books over the weekend and came up with a better idea.

In The Quilter's Catalog, I saw Sue Benner's "Wild and Crazy Fused Ornaments" project. Her ornaments incorporated bits of fused silk, but I took a simpler route and used glittery quilting cottons, red on one side and green on the other. They are quilted and edged with gold metallic thread.

I kind of like the no-frills look of these, but using a more elaborate print or silks would definitely make them pop a bit more.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Embellished reusable bag swap

I actually came up with the idea for this swap! The challenge is to take a ready-made bag (I bought this one at Joann's for $1) and embellish it in any way you like. My partner's favorite colors are purple and green, so I used fabrics in those colors to make quilt blocks to cover the Joann's logo on each side.

Log cabin block with stacked buttons at the block center:

Irish chain block with a string of beads at the center (I should have used a darker purple fabric for better contrast in this block):And a couple of note cards to send along with the bag, just for fun. These are soooo easy to make, and they're a great way to use up little scraps of fabric.

Friday, August 28, 2009


I love this wee birdie. He's only about 4 inches tall. :) His front is a little pocket to hold love notes.

Tutorial at MollyChicken.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Moving on...

Since I'm still having a creative block with those dumb star ornaments, I decided to move on to another project. This one was pretty straightforward: Make a covered journal (I used a composition notebook) that will fit the recipient's tastes. My swap partner likes all things goth, Halloween, skulls, and the like. Not my taste, but I did happen to have some of this pirate skull fabric left over from a do-rag I had made my husband a couple of years ago. Added some black/red fabric, a red zipper and button, and a black ribbon closure. I feel good that I got something done.

Now I really have to figure out what to do about those ornaments...

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Star ornaments that don't sparkle

I'm signed up for a Star Ornament swap that's due to be sent out in a couple of weeks, so I started experimenting.

#1 seemed blah to me, even with the usually popular red/white polka dot fabric.
So I tried a livelier fabric. Not crazy about #2, either. Maybe it needs a different button?
Switched gears to a non-Christmasy color combination. Used silver metallic thread and cord to dress it up a bit, but still not sure about #3.
Do you like any of these? Have any suggestions? Apparently my creativity is on an end-of-summer holiday.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Holocaust Museum Butterfly Project

Created for a swap involving the Holocaust Museum's Butterfly Project.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Shabby chic quiltie

I've always liked the shabby chic style. I think if I had stayed single, I probably would have decorated my home that way. Instead, I got married and had 4 kids. So our decor is just shabby, without the chic.

This is a quiltie (also called a doll quilt) I made for a swap. I saw a picture of a pillowcase designed by Holly Holderman (of LakeHouse Dry Goods) at All People Quilt, and modified it for this project. The finished piece is 10 1/2" x 14 1/2" and is hand quilted. I had to tea dye the rick rack to get the off-white color I wanted. (Who knew that no one makes cream-colored rick rack? Every other color but.)

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Notebook cover - the first one

This was my prototype. It looks good, but I made it too small, so it fits around the notebook very tightly. I don't know how long the zipper will hold out; I fear it's going to be pulled apart by the stretching of the fabric. Ah, well. This was some fabric that was given to me, and I thought it was ugly, but it looks pretty good in this project!

Composition notebook cover

I recently discovered the amazing work of Daily Threads, and made an attempt to copy some of her journal covers. This one is for a swap. I'm not completely happy with the fit of the cover, but it's not bad for a second attempt.

The zipper opens to a pocket under the front cover, where the user can store writing utensils. Cool, huh?!

Sunday, August 09, 2009

Using scraps

I signed up for a new swap yesterday, Sew a Quilted Pot-holder, Autumn Themed. By bedtime, I had finished two pot holders. I have a ton of fabric strips, so I was glad to use some of them up in this project. (Barely put a dent in the pile, though.)

Both designs are from Pretty Little Potholders, although I modified them for size.

Saturday, August 08, 2009

It's an addiction.

My sewing machine & fabric. I'm pretty certain I'd shrivel up and die without either one of them.
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
So there I was, cutting up some fabric for a layer cake (10" squares) swap, one thing led to another, and a few hours later, I was carrying a new purse.

It's my own design, but really, it's just your basic boxed-bottom rectangular bag. I put 4 pockets on the inside. This is the first time I've made handles like these. I like the feel of them, but because I don't always stitch in perfectly straight lines, I don't think I'd do these again in a plain fabric that shows every stitch. It has a button closure, because I was too lazy to spend the extra time putting in a zipper.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

A swap thing, and something for MYSELF.

For the October Holidays quilt block swap. This block pattern is from the Sep/Oct '05 issue of Quiltmaker magazine. (Sometimes it does pay to keep old magazines around... :) )

And because I got a little tired of sending all my creative work away to other people, I made a new tote bag for myself. The pattern is Roomy Patchwork Purse from Better Homes & Gardens, and the fabric (except for the handle) is from Moda's Urban Couture line. The loop-and-button closure was my own addition, and I put pockets in the lining. A bag without pockets is like a car without cup holders, in my opinion.