Saturday, January 31, 2009

Bright summer dress

I wasn't in the mood to work on my quilt projects so I picked this fun bright fabric out of my stash to make my fave dress pattern for Presley. The pattern can be used as a long top or a dress. Very versatile you can just shorten the hem. My girl is going to have so many dresses for summer. I really should make a few and start selling them on Etsy I'm just trying to perfect my sewing on the serger. I have a few patterns from pink fig and they are all really great and easy to follow. My next pattern that I want to try just came out and it will be great for summer too.  I love how the edges are just finished with a rolled hem it is so quick and easy versus pressing them all under twice and sewing. My serger just zips thru the material. I just have a hard time at the start and finish point and how to secure that?? I am doing what works for now but I know it isn't right. They better call me back for when they are setting up some serger classes very soon. I also love shirring. I want to find a pattern for a top in my size or maybe I'll try to make up a pattern of my own but I'm not too good at that sort of thing.  I do have a store bought dress that uses it so maybe I can try to figure it out from that. I think presley is pretty set on summer dresses/skirts I need to work on some for me. I love wearing skirts all summer. I am SO NOT a shorts girl. I don't wear shorts ever I just don't like them.

Friday, January 30, 2009

thrift store redo

I found this house coat at a thrift store for $2.95 and I really liked the material so I figured I could use it for something. I decided Presley needed another skirt. So this is a tutorial for a 2T/3T skirt using this housecoat. Depending on your child's size you can alter the dimensions. 

I first cut the bottom off of the housecoat at 11". That way I could use the bottom hem that was already done. The width of the piece is about 22" but if yours is smaller of bigger it doesn't matter you will just either gather less or more to match up with the band

For the band  I cut 12" in using the one finished side as a fold and cut 5" for the height. So if you were to lay it flat it would be 24"x5"

Then sew the open side using a 1/4" seam allowance with right sides together.

Then gather the top of the skirt section so it will match up to the band. Pin with right sides together and sew using 1/4" seam allowance. Then zig zag or finish the ends the way you like.

Then press the seam towards the top of the skirt and then top stitch 1/8" around the band.

Then turn the top of the band under 1/4" and press and then turn it under 1 1/2" and press.

Next top stitch 1/8" from the top and an 1/8" from the bottom to create the casing for the elastic. Make sure to leave an opening at the bottom to thread thru your elastic. Use 1" width elastic. Next measure the child's waist and cut the elastic about 1" smaller. Thread thru casing and sew close.

Now your skirt is done. That was so quick and easy. 

My skirt still needs a little more because the housecoat had big slits on the sides and I wanted to close them up for my daughter. So I got creative and used the buttons from the top of the housecoat. Because I am lazy I just carefully cut around the seams so I left the buttons in place and could just sew them down onto the skirt. I got lucky and it had an even number of buttons so I cut them in half so there would be 3 one each side of the skirt.

I zig-zagged the slits shut so it would be easier to pin and sew the buttons down. Then I pinned it to the skirt and sewed very close to the edges.

here is the skirt modeled by my lovely daughter. I just happened to have a matching purple shirt so we are in business!! I do have leftovers of the housecoat but not sure if there is enough for a top. If you have any questions just leave me a message. This is my first time trying to explain a tutorial so hopefully I made sense. If you make a skirt from this tute I would love to see it. Just post your link. 

Thursday, January 29, 2009

working oh the butterfly whirly quilt

I am still working on the whirly quilt for our bedroom. I think I am making it a little bigger than I originally planned. I have enough fabric so I think I will try to make it big enough to cover more of our king size bed but not as big as a king size blanket if that makes sense? I am already dreading how big it is getting and all the material I am going to be stuffing thru my machine trying to stipple it. I will be getting a workout for sure. I think I am done with the cutting unless I decide to go a tad bigger once it is all pieced. I should have the top all done by friday night. Then I will worry about the back and what I should do with that. Depending if I have enough leftovers to piece the back or a trip to the store will be in order? I am really trying hard to use up most of my stash and get that all cleared out.  Not sure if i will use flannel or just regular cotton for the majority of the back either. So many decisions huh? I have spent my January "budget" for my fabric addiction so either I use what I have or I wait a couple more days till february comes and I have my new "budget" money. I have given myself this budget each month for 2 reasons. One so my stash doesn't keep getting bigger and that I try to get creative with what I have and the other cuz this economy really sucks!!! Don't they know they are putting a huge damper on my hobbies?? Forget the big companies and their bailouts what about us crazy crafters that "need" more supplies!!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Boy Boy birdie quilt

This is the last of the gifts for the triplets. This one is for the boy. I found this material as a fat bundle at Joann's and used my 50% off coupon so the whole top and binding was only $4.50. The back is from my stash it is not really the typical cotton fabric used for quilting. It almost is more of a canvas type weave but still soft. It was a little harder to work with because it seemed to have a little more stretch to it too. The back got a little bunched up in a couple of spots but once I washed it and it puckered up nicely you can't see the mess up hardly at all anymore. I love when that happens. None of my quilts are perfect from start to finish but hey neither am I;). Now I just need to label the 3 quilts and wait for the babies to come and then they are ready for their new home. It is always a little sad to see them leave my house but also rewarding that someone else will hopefully enjoy them.

baby flower quilt

I finished this one a couple weeks ago. It also is a baby gift for one of the girl triplets. It is leftovers from my wallflower quilt. The back and binding is a very soft flannel. I really love the colors and the fabric. It is from sandi henderson.  I originally bought it for clothing for Presley but I guess it had other ideas and ended up being in 2 different quilts. I think I want to have a couple baby quilts on hand so when I have a baby shower or a friend with a new baby I have one ready to give as a gift in case time is tight and I can't make one right away. Also an excuse to keep sewing. 

Monday, January 26, 2009

baby chick quilt

This is one of the girl's baby quilt to go to my GF that is having the triplets.  She is having 2 girls and a boy.  I found this material at Joann's and it is just adorable I ended up not getting enough so I had to improvise to make it bigger and it still is on the smaller side but will work. I used flannel for the back and the binding so it will be extra soft on the new baby. It started out being a different design but when I realized I was out of white and the color fabric I had to change plans. It didn't line up perfectly either due to my poor planning but it can't always be perfect. I also did my loopty-lou free hand on it that I did on my valentine's quilt. I want to experiment with a few more free hand quilting techniques. I like the look of the plain stipple but it is fun to mix it up since I get bored so easily!! I love doing the smaller quilts it is so much easier to stipple without trying to get the quilt squeezed into my 7" arm space. Oh how I dream of having a long arm machine. Until I win the lottery my muscles will just be nice and strong pushing all those quilts around.

Wallflower quilt done

After another trip to Joann fabrics to buy more pink thread I am done with my wallflower quilt. No it is not going on any wall I just named it that because of the big flowers in the fabric. I am really liking the pink thread for the stippling. It gives a little more to the quilt than just white. I pieced the binding and the back with leftovers from the front. I love being able to use up all the extra that way my scrap binds don't get too out of control.  I can't believe how much thread you go thru with stippling. I used 3 spools of  250 yards. I think this quilt is going on Presley's new big girl bed. It isn't quite a twin size the quilt measures 66" square before I washed it not sure how much it shrunk?? It will fit fine because she has bed rails that won't allow the quilt to hang over anyhow. Her room is pink and green so it will look great in there.

Friday, January 23, 2009

back in business

I have been out of white thread and my shipment came in today. They have great prices and great quality. I didn't want to go to joann's and pay 3 times as much for one spool so I waited patiently...which isn't one of my strong suits. Now hopefully I can finish some projects that were on hold. Not much sewing going on this week but hey my house is spotless right now. I love going into the weekend with a full fridge, clean house, laundry all done and put away!!! Now I won't feel so guilty sitting at my machine this weekend. I hope to get few hours by myself and veg out in front of my pretty machine. 

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

whirly for the bedroom

I found this design at crazymomquilts and knew I had to do a quilt like this. This one is going to go into our bedroom. I am NOT going to make a king size quilt for the bed it is just going to be big enough to cover me and some of Greg but he really doesn't get too cold so it is for my benefit. I keep bringing in our Christmas quilt at night and soon I'll have to put it away until next year but not till I have something to replace it. I picked up the fabrics for this quilt last week when Joann's was having their big sale. The solid cream color is from a sheet from the thrift store. I think the quilt top will have only cost 10 dollars tops with leftovers to spare....I think. I need to finish cutting I just wanted to put a couple squares together really quick to see how it is going to look. Very excited to see it come together. They are big 11" blocks so it will go together very quickly once my cat lets me finish cutting.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

valentine skirt

I had leftovers from the quilt so I made a patchwork skirt for valentine's day. I will probably get a  shirt and applique some material with a heart to match. Nothing cuter than a little girl in skirts. I love their little legs. Not sure how well the legwarmers I made will go but I am sure they will blend ok. It is a hard pink and red to find to match. Most pinks are so cool but this is almost a warm pink that you don't see as often. The legwarmers are white and the skirt is more off white/cream.  I made it a little big so she can wear it for quite awhile. Even though it is a great valentine's fabric it still works for a daily skirt too and just not for the holiday. Last night I had the house to myself so I got some serious sewing time in. I worked on a couple more baby quilts.  I have a bunch of flannel I want to put to use but just not sure what to do. I have used some for pj bottoms and some for rag quilts but what else should I do??? I need some inspiration. I might stop at the library tomorrow and try to find some craft/quilting books to find some new things to try. I could use another pincushion they are always in demand around here. I am always running back and forth grabbing one to bring at my work areas.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

elmo rag quilt

My mom asked if I would make an Elmo rag quilt for her to give to a friend's daughter for Christmas. I really love making the rag quilts. They are so soft and cuddly. They are a mess after the first wash/dryer cycle but are worth the mess. I had my mom wash this one in her machines. The colors are so bright and vivid. The little girl is almost 3 and loves her Elmo so I am sure she will love her new blankie. 

Thursday, January 15, 2009

ready for love

Now that my valentine quilt is done I'm ready for snuggling up with it and my dh. I used a flannel cream sheet I got at the thrift store for 2.95.  I love it because it is soft and warm and I didn't have to piece it together it was wide enough. I really love the binding too. I used up all the leftovers from the scrap bag and they were each about 5" long  so I had to piece them all together and I couldn't do it on the bias because it would have wasted too much fabric and I needed every inch I could get. I just pressed the seams open so when I was hand binding it wasn't too bulky for the needle. The colors and patterns are just one of my favorite valentine prints I've seen in a long time. I also tried something new for quilting it. I have just done the normal stipple random pattern but this time I tried adding little swirls like some of the designs in the fabric. It turned out pretty good but not perfect. Since I really didn't practice the design I just winged it. There are a few spots that I messed up but since the back and the thread are both cream it doesn't stand out too much.  Now I just have 3 more tops to quilt and I am caught up. I think I might have to run to Joann's to pick out something for the backs. I don't have the right fabrics in my stash to finish them up....oh darn I just hate shopping for fabric!!!:)