Wednesday, May 22, 2013

I Won!


 I am so lucky for many reasons. But I was especially lucky in this season's SewMamaSew Giveaway Day, which has morphed into giveaway week with so many fantastic giveaways. I love finding new shops and blogs.

This year, I was fortunate to win 10 fat quarters of my choosing from Ella's Cottage. Leigh Ann writes a blog and runs an etsy shop from Prince Edward Island in Canada.

Giveaway Day Goods

Here's the loot:
Giveaway Day Goods
Bag of Chips Jelly Red
Bag of Chips Picnic Blue
Scallops, white on red
Scallops, white on orange
Scallops, white on lime
Scallops, navy on white
Raspberry Jam Jelly Red
Raspberry Jam Picnic blue
Happy Go Lucky dots white/aqua
Hip Fab Fluffer Nutter
[This is the list of fabrics on the left, but in reverse order. Too lazy to switch it around or re-order the list :)]

And if that weren't enough, I was also lucky enough to win Rachel's giveaway at Snippets of Sweetness. She was giving away a copy of Ayumi's book, Patchwork Please!

SMS Giveaway Day

She was also giving away a collection of snippets (see what I did there!) in the form of a charm pack with lots of goodies in there.

SMS Giveaway Day

Not a ton of sewing happening here. I finally got the binding sewn on the front side of my churn dash quilt and I attempted a fully-machine sewn binding, but I am terrible at that. It takes so long and I always manage to miss the back so many times. So I'm ripping it out and will do it by hand. Pretty soon my little one will be able to actually use it! 

I'm also going to sew a couple more Mendocino sundresses, as they seem to be pretty good for nursing. I'm always on the lookout for nursing-friendly tops. I'm so glad it's finally warmer so I don't have to be bundled up so much.

Looking forward to sewing some more or at least getting some more pieces cut for my WIPs.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

I'm Down with OPP!

Toy made by my aunt

OPP - that's Other People's Projects :) I haven't been able to do much - no surprise, I'm sure. At about three and half weeks, I sewed three seams together to finish up my second Boppy cover and I had rip one out and re-do it. I also managed to get in a little fabric shopping and snagged some much sought-after Comma and I've been dreaming and scheming about what to do with it, but that's about the extent of my creative endeavors. I guess that's how it will be for a while, anyway.

The baby received a couple of amazing handmade gifts that I'd like to share. First, my aunt out in the DC area made this amazing toy/ball:

Toy made by my aunt

I've seen tutorials and patterns like this, but I have not been brave enough to try it out. My aunt is a very experienced quilter and she made two of these - one for my daughter and one for my new nephew - and even she said, "next time, I'm making a quilt!" So, I know they are pretty challenging.

The baby really loves it. She's starting to track things with her eyes and of course she really responds to things with high contrast. I'm sure she's going to love it even more, as she gets older. Maybe I can find a way to hang it over her bed or changing table...

Next, my cousin made this incredible elephant quilt:

Quilt from my cousin

The picture of the whole quilt doesn't show the ears very well, but the are 3-dimensional - they come out of the quilt blocks, like flaps.

Quilt from my cousin-detail Quilt from my cousin-detail

It's adorable! I'm thinking about sewing a sleeve on it to hang it up. That will look much better than the painters tape!

Oh, I also received my FQs from the Text Me Swap:

Text Me Swap fabrics

Very excited to play around with these someday soon (maybe!).

Saturday, March 9, 2013

The Reason I'm Not Sewing

An adorable, amazing, delightful, life-changing reason.
My baby girl has arrived and I am in a haze of late night feedings and diaper changes.
And I wouldn't have it any other way!

Monday, February 18, 2013

Still Sewing and Scheming (and Gestating...)

Honeycomb #4
I love the churn dash! Here are the fantastic blocks from the amazing ladies of Honeycomb 4. I'm still missing 2, but I hope they will come soon. I am planning on making this up for my baby. I got a fun Robert Kaufman flannel dot to put on the back.

I loved them so much that I decided I should cut into my precious stack of Architextures and make a new queen-sized quilt for my bed! Here are the first two blocks:

Churn Dash Blocks

I'm using all of the fabrics, except the white cross hatch, and I'm using Kona white as the accent. I am making 12.5" blocks, rather than the 4-in-1 blocks that my honeycomb-mates made. 6" blocks are just a bit too ambitious for me to make a queen-sized quilt.

Amanda Jean has a great tutorial at Crazy Mom Quilts. But instead of cutting four 2.5"x4.5" strips, I cut one 18"x2.5" strip of background and churn dash fabric, sewed them together and then cut the 4.5" squares.

I made up this little pouch today, from Anna at Noodlehead's Lil Cutie Pouch tutorial.

Lil Cutie Pouch

I am going to put my cash, cellphone, id and insurance card in it for the hospital. I figure I don't need to bring and keep track of my full purse!

I just love this Anna Maria Horner print. I didn't remember to flip the other side, so it's technically upside down.

Lil Cutie Pouch-back

But I still love it. I only had an invisible zipper of the right size, so that's the one I made.

Lil Cutie Pouch

The interior is a Moda Modern Workshop print, I think. I used it for the tab, too.

I also added some great hard to find Tula Pink prints to my Tula treasure chest. I swapped some Architexture prints for the three prints on the left. I never thought I'd get those fish!! Then I purchased the ladybugs from Etsy. I already had the brown and green, but the I am really excited to have the white-accented ones. I think except for a few Salt Water prints that I want, my collection is almost finished! (I'm not trying to get the every print from every collection, I'm just collecting the ones that I really want!)

Tula treasure additions

No baby, yet. Getting very tired of being pregnant and very ready to meet this baby in person! Onward and upward!

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Weekend Sewing

Divided Basket-Diaper Caddy

Got a little more sewing done this weekend. I recently acquired the Divided Basket pattern from Anna over at Noodlehead. I love her patterns. I have the 241 Tote, which I've made several times, and I also have the Sidekick Tote, but I haven't had a chance to make that one, yet. Her patterns are fantastic and easy to use.

Divided Basket-Diaper Caddy

I've been smitten with the divided basket since Anna first posted about her versions back in December. In the post about the second version, she mentioned that she was thinking of writing up a pattern for it, so I'm really happy she did and I was able to put it together before baby arrived. There are probably tutorials out there that make similar items, but I really like having the measurements, fabric requirements, and pattern pieces right in front of me. Plus, it's nice to support a home pattern maker.

Divided Basket-Diaper Caddy

I've already loaded it up with diapers! I thought it would be nice to have a station downstairs in our apartment, as well as the more formal changing table/dresser we have upstairs.

Divided Basket-Diaper Caddy

Fortunately, everything I used, I had on hand. I did not have any fusible fleece, but I used some grey duck cloth that I had for making bags. I figured it had enough body to help the basket keep its shape and it seems to hold up pretty well. I didn't have any webbing to make the covered straps, so I just cut 1.5" strips of the duck cloth and covered it with the fabric I used for the interior. I love that little detail. I decided to go with the pocket option and to line it with the duck cloth instead of using the biasoption. (I also used the Amy Butler print for the divider.)

Also, a million years ago, I cut out fabric to make another Los Alamos Canvas Tote.

Canvas tote

And this weekend I finally put it together. It's a simple unlined bag. (Printed fabric from Ikea, black duck cloth.) I'm going to stuff this in my hospital bag for all of the stuff we will bring need to home from the hospital - extra diapers, "female stuff" :) Then it will transition to a grocery bag.

We're getting down to the wire. Part of me is ready for the baby right now, but if she holds on till Valentine's Day, that would be ideal! 

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Traveling Handmade

Nursing cover

Last year when QuiltCon (Feb. 21 - 24, 2013) was announced, I was so excited. I hadn't been able to make it to either of the Sewing Summits. So, I made tentative plans to go. I even told my mom about it (she's a quilter, but not necessarily plugged in to the online world of quilting or "modern" quilting). I've never been to Austin, but heard it's a fun town and I thought it would be a great chance to see some of my favorite quilters' work, up close and personal.

But then, something more wonderful happened: I discovered that I was expecting - on Feb. 21! So, no QuiltCon for this quilter. But I know it will be a great success, so I am looking forward to going next year, with my one year old in tow (or maybe I'll be ready for a little mom-alone-time by then!).

I've seen so many great Traveling Handmade posts from people attending the Sewing Summit and maybe we'll see some for QuiltCon, too. Then, I thought, "well, can still travel homemade!" I may not be traveling all the to Austin from Wisconsin, but I'll be traveling 25 minutes to the hospital and the infinite distance from being a non-parent to becoming a parent :)

car seat canopy

So, in addition to my hospital bag and nursing pillow and burp cloths, I put together a car seat cover and a nursing cover this weekend. I used this tutorial for the nursing cover from Made By the Mama Monster, but there are a ton of tutorials. I was going to use the Groovy Guitars print from Michael Miller but some of the tutorials suggested using a print more suited to mom, rather than baby. I actually agonized over which print to use and finally cut into my precious Tula Pink Birds and the Bees print (see above). I have some silly mirror/self-portraits of me wearing it in my Flickr photostream and I used a few flannel leftovers for corner pockets.

car seat canopy-window

For my car seat, I used this tutorial from Wannabe Crafty for the car seat canopy/cover. There are also a ton of tutorials for these, but I liked this one because it had little window. 

I used a Michael Miller flannel print and I backed the canopy with minky in a lovely color called "Tiffany." It's a little lighter than the hippos, but that's the challenge of picking colors online.

car seat canopy-window/minky

Minky is a PITA the sew with. I've done it several times. But this time, I thought I had cut the flannel and the minky to the same size but when I started to pin, it quickly became apparent that they were not the same size. Or, the minky stretched out of shape. So, it could stand to have a couple inches or so towards the top. But ultimately, I am pleased with it and it should stand up to a Wisconsin February.

Car seat canopy

Here are my Text Me swap fabrics already cut in fat quarters and ready to be sent! There are so many great fabrics in this swap and I can't wait to see what gets sent back. Anyone who wants to join in can - just have your FQs to Jessica by Feb. 15!

Text Me Swap fabrics

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Moving Right Along

Boppy cover

I got some baby projects checked off my to-do list! I used this tutorial and pattern for the Boppy cover. I think it could be a little more snug, but since I added the piping, I didn't want to go back and rip it out to fit it better. I used 1 yard from the Ed Emberley Happy Drawing line from Cloud9 fabrics, but since my fabric is directional, I probably needed more like 1.5 yards or so. So, I added some green Kona solid on the back (maybe Jungle?). I also have the lions and tigers, so I might fiddle me around with the fit a little bit, before adding the piping when I do that version.

Receiving blankets

I made a couple fast and easy flannel receiving blankets from the awesome hightop fabric. I TypeB'd it a little because I left the selvedges, so I could keep the width. I did a proper hem on the cut sides, though. I just wanted them to be large enough for good swaddling.

Then I took some of the soft fabric remnants/scraps I had lying around and turned them in to burp cloths! I was so happy to use up some of my larger clothing fabric remnants, which were too small to be turned into an actual article of clothing. I even made a couple from a thin cotton slip I took out of a dress (those are the white ones at the end).

Burp cloths

I often use Cloud9 tutorial for contoured burp cloths for gifts. But I had a variety of sizes of pieces and so I just did rounded corners. (I wasn't even going to do that! My poor baby - everyone else gets the fancy burp cloths! At least she'll get rounded corners :)) These are to catch baby puke, after all, but they can still be cute!

Burp cloth
 This is lawn and some upcycled sweatshirt material.

Burp cloth
This is some cotton sateen and cotton knit.

Burp cloth
This is lawn and flannel (I love this Children at Play print for making a paper hat!).

Left on the to-do list: second Boppy cover; a nursing cover - fabric, notions, hardware ready to go; and a car seat cover (it's been so cold here in Madison!). Then, I think we're good to go with the homemade stuff.

My Bee a {modern} Swapper churn dash blocks have started to find their way to my mailbox and they are awesome!

Here are a couple from Heide:

Churn dash blocks

Aren't they great?! I've received them from Whitney and Carolyn already, as well. Can't wait to see them all together. Thank you so much Hive 4!!

I'm obviously a little crazy, because I also just signed up for the Text Me text fabric swap - fabrics due Feb 15, baby due Feb. 21...

But, how could I resist?! I can definitely  cut up some fat quarters. These are the two that I picked out:

Word Play cream for Text Me swap Word Play black and white for Text Me swap
So, I have 7.5 yards! I'll keep some, but then I'll hopefully be getting back a really nice bunch of texty goodness. There are some really great prints in the Flickr group! It reminds me that I need to get back to my Labyrinth quilt.

I don't when I'll be getting back to quilting. It seems to be all baby, all the time right now and I doubt that it's going to get any better, anytime soon. I've also really been enjoying seeing the Scrappy Trip Along blocks and quilts. And the to-do wishlist keeps on growing :)