Thursday, April 7, 2011

Into the Great Wide Open

Hostess Gift Box

I'm off this afternoon to Minnesota, where I will be stopping in at my office, attending a riveting 3 hours continuing education course on ethics (snore), and then I'm going on girls' weekend with my friends! My friend has a cabin in Wisconsin (yes, I'm driving to Minnesota from Wisconsin, so I can drive back into Wisconsin with my friends... It makes more sense if you look at a map, but anyhoo...). This cabin has no cell coverage (gulp!) and no internet (ahhhhhhh!). But I'm looking forward to being unplugged for a little bit. I can only imagine what my google reader is going to look like when I get back!

241 Tote

Anyhoo - so, no sewing (or blogging) this weekend but I whipped up another 241 Tote this week. I added some really (unintentionally) wonky zig zag stitching around the magnetic closures because the lining fabric (even with a piece of fleece and lightweight interfacing) seemed a bit too thin. I may put a little padding on the exterior part as well, next time.

241 Tote interior

I also made this little fabric bowl/box for my friend who's hosting us this weekend. I'm going to get some candy or something to put in there (maybe some Easter grass and some Easter candy?).

Hostess Gift Box

This is a free pattern at SewMamaSew. I did make mine larger - I started with a 15" piece of heavyweight interfacing (It was a Pellon remnant at Joann's, but I think it was the 71F called for by the pattern).

Hostess Gift Box (arrow)

My only gripe - and this may have more to do with technique than product - is that when you turn fabric piece right sides out, the interfacing/stabilizer gets all crunchy and consequently the interior fabric does as well. I spritzed and ironed as much as I could, but some of the wrinkles and crinkles wouldn't come out.  (See arrow in photo above.) There's probably a better way that I'm just missing...

In other news, my Bloggers' Block-a-Palooza quilt is languishing in half-donedness. I fretted about it for a while. I'm not really a sampler kinda gal, aesthetic-wise. The experience was totally about the process and the community - which were both awesome. I probably should have just done a traditional sashing layout, but I decided to tackle the sample layout, minus the applique flowers. Typically, I need to trim my blocks to 12.25" (from the intended 12.5"), which made the math problematic. (Layout 1 involves placing the 16 blocks in a ring around a center appliqued panel, so you have to do the math from the outside in, which was weird.) Had I just made the blocks the proper size this wouldn't be a problem.

Here's my center panel (still needs to be stitched down):

Block-a-palooza center detail

I don't love it, but I don't want to rip everything apart and make sashing. So, that's how it's gonna be. Despite all of my calculations, I stil made a mistake in my math, so I need to add to the width of the quilt and that's why it's been sitting on the design wall for about a week. (That, and I got obsessed with bags.)

Speaking of languishing, my Rainy Days Parisville quilt blocks are also just hanging out, waiting for me to get back to them. A couple more blocks to cut out and then I just need to sew them together, so that should be short work. Unless I get distracted by something else, of course.

Finally, I'm thinking about joining up with this sew along. Click on the button for more info.

Looks like fun and awesome prizes. The goal is to make a bed-size quilt.  But I think I'll probably go off of a pattern (or use one for inspiration), rather than creating my own.

And that's what I got for today. 
Be back some time next week. 
Unless I don't sew anything. 
So perhaps we should just say - until we meet again!

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