Category Archives: Projects

400 Feet of Sewing!

We recently had new flooring installed in our home and my side entry needed a small carpet. Making rope bowls had been so much fun – why not sew a rug? I started off with two 100 foot skeins of cotton rope. In the washing machine they went with brown dye. Doing a flat surface is a lot of fun and I loved the look of the variegated brown thread I used. When the rope had almost run out, it was clear that the rug wasn’t big enough. Two more skeins dyed and back to the sewing machine!

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The brown variegated thread rant out so I went on to a green/blue variegated thread! Yup – that ran out too! I switched to a brown that matched the rope. The second dye batch did not match the first, so I switched thread again, this time to a dark brown. I lost count of how many bobbins I filled – I’m pretty sure it was about 8! I emptied some spools of thread too!

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The rug is backed with a non-slip material for safety’s sake. The rug is perfect in it’s new home and I surely get a kick out of the fact that I made it!

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This rug was April’s first finish – let’s see what I accomplished in March:

March WIPs

Linking up with: Jo’s Country Junction, Sew, Stitch, Snap, Linky Tuesday, Needle & Thread Thursday, Midweek Makers

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Old Made New

An Island Batik Adventure – Vintage Quilts Inspiring New Creations

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I scoured my books, patterns and the internet for hours trying to come up with the project I really wanted to do for this challenge. Then it came to me – an apron! How vintage is that?! I did find a pattern for a half apron that was very vintage looking, (Sewing Geek Harlequin Apron pattern) but with these amazing Island Batiks I knew it would immediately be new and exciting.

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I did a little altering to the pattern: one row less from top to bottom and one more row added to the side. I also gathered it at the waist a bit so it wasn’t just straight across. It is fully lined, and I straight line quilted the whole apron.  A pocket was needed, so I sketched several: rounded, rounded gathered, rectangle. Mimicking the pattern of the apron was definitely the answer. Once the pocket was on I was absolutely giddy about this project. Don’t you just love when that happens – not just being okay or pleased with your creations, but super happy?

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My new vintage apron now hangs in my kitchen, adding a burst of color and soon to be worn when having friends or family over for dinner.

 

 

Looking Back Vintage Quilt

Koi Pond Quilt

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On July of 2016 I posted about a quilt top I designed using Kaffe Fassett fabrics and was finishing it up.  I did and had it quilted and then it just sat in my quilting closet. When the quilt top was finished, I thought it looked  like a pond of water. I even had the quilting design to look like ripples of water. Finally, a year and a half later, the Koi Pond Quilt was born!

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The pattern for the koi fish is from the book (I cannot find the book anywhere and really want to give the author/designer credit.  As soon as it’s found, I’ll update this post!) From my small stash of silks and other fine fabric, I began to piece the fish together as an applique.

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I am very pleased with the outcome, and even more pleased that after all this time, the quilt is complete! It’s a lot easier than tending an outdoor Koi pond! Hmmm…why did I wait so long?!

 

What I’ve Been Working On

I’m a planner. It seems to be my nature. Some of it probably comes from years of administrative work and deadlines. I’m the one when going on a retreat or trip is packed days ahead of time. (Spring retreat is in four weeks and my projects are packed!) I do think it’s a good thing although it tends to make a few folks think perhaps I’m a bit off balance!

As an Island Batik Ambassador, we’re sent the year’s calendar events with project themes.  I’ve combined getting ready for retreats with my Island Batik Adventures – I’ve sketched, written plans and cut fabrics. My April project, “Vintage made New” is done and here are the fabulous fabrics I used. I can’t wait for my reveal very soon! I am ridiculously giddy about this one.

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“Playful Pillows” is the May event, and I’ve got a real cutie planned for a much needed new pillow for our sofa in our TV watching area. Here are the fabrics all ready:

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June’s event is “Modern Batik Challenge.” I have a really fun baby quilt planned, combining a scrappy modern look with applique. It will make a terrific baby gift using these fabrics:

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I found July to be somewhat challenging. Not so much in finding a pattern, but finding one I wanted to use. The challenge is “Pattern Play, Secondary Pattern.” These too are all cut and ready to sew at retreat:

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August is our Great Outdoors Blog Hop. This is when all the ambassadors reveal a newly released fabric line using a Spring/Summer 2018 bundle. I was so excited about the beautiful fabric line I received I went right to work. I had an idea all sketched out, but one evening I went through my pattern bin and found a pattern I’ve had for years and have always wanted to do. Yup – next day I had it all cut out and it is now nearly done! Just a bit more quilting and binding!

There may not be a lot to show here, but you can see I have been busy planning and prepping. I have a few ideas for the rest of the year, but will hold off as we’ll receive a new shipment of fabric in July and the fabric will be part of the inspiration. Now I can go ahead and pull out a work in progress bin and make some progress there. Should have something to share soon!

Christmas Pillows

image9.jpegChristmas in March! That’s a new one for me! A couple of years ago I purchased “The Quilter’s Snowman” by Mama’s Quilts. I hadn’t done redwork in ages and thought how much fun it would be! And it was – for the first block.  The second block was okay. When it was finished, I knew there wouldn’t be a third being stitched.  The novelty wore off.

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What to do with just two blocks?  Christmas pillows of course! Not long after they were completely stitched, I pulled out some Christmas fabric pieces and did  simple borders and a pillow back. They are now snug in a closet waiting for Christmas when they will adorn the sofa. AND…an empty project box.  Woo Hoo!!!

Quilt & Sew-In Retreat has openings.  Go to the Retreat page for more info and registration!

New Machine & Feb Wrap-Up

February? Really? I’m quite a bit behind as everyday life took a turn recently. A loved one was in the hospital for several days. The good news is that all is now well but it does take me a while these days to get back to normal – whatever normal is!

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Now for my good news! A new machine – the Bablock Jazz! I will be using this primarily for free-motion quilting. Look at all that room! It even has 27 stitches and does 1,000 stitches a minute. That’s fast! It’s also very smooth. (Please note: I am in no way connected to Babylock; this is just a personal review.) The LED lighting is also quite wonderful.

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I’ve played on it, but haven’t yet tackled a quilt. I’ve got some smaller must do’s first. There are ten charity quilt tops waiting to be quilted, so I’ll definitely have lots of opportunity!

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Here is my February project listing. Some progress is definitely better than none!

Feb listing

 

New to Me & Different Technique!

An Island Batik Adventure

Try a TechniqueFor the month of March we ambassadors were asked to try a new technique – something we had never done before. The list we made amongst ourselves was endless:  binding techniques, different types of applique, specialty rulers, clothing construction, art quilts, and the list went on and on. There were so many more things to consider, many of which I have done at least once. Maybe not perfected, maybe not well, but I had done it. Hmmmm. Then I saw a pic of a fabric vase type of structure. Okay! Here I go!

After sketching and cutting out a shape from paper, I played with it in a standing up position. I then cut that shape out of a heavy stabilizer. Having chosen several bright batiks, I began to cut them into random rectangular shapes, join them and place the piece onto the stabilizer securing it with basting spray. I also added another bright batik as the backing. I chose several of my Aurifil threads and quilted all the sections and then trimmed around the outer edge. I finished the edge with satin stitching and yes, this part was tedious.

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Now the vase needed some life, some dimension. I covered a thin piece of rope with fabric and zig zagged it onto the base. I cut out a front and back for two random shaped flowers from a bright pink batik and sandwiched them with a leftover piece of some Thermore batting pieces I had, giving them dimension. This is a wonderful light weight batting to work with. I machine quilted each flower and added some beads in the center of each and then went on to make three leaves using the same method. After arranging the flower and leaves onto the base, I stitched each piece onto the base.

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I then put the piece on end, made it into a cylinder and hot glued it together. And there it is! A glass vase hides inside nicely tucked away. It’s perfect having a yard full of daffodils this week – in the vase they went. So much color and the promise of Spring!

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Linking up with: NTT, One Monthly Goal