Thursday, November 29, 2012

Some new projects, including Buttons!

I am putting in a lot of time sewing these days.  It seems I am really "on a roll".
This morning I unrolled a new jelly roll of 2-1/2" strips.."Simply Color, by V and Co for moda.  (just got it in the shop last week-- and there are chevron fabrics in it!!!)

 I'm making a second version of a quilt that I'm writing a new pattern for.

 the first version I sewed the top from these happy fabrics-- "Good Morning" by Me and My Sister from moda, (yup we have those fabrics too).
 I'm using a little bit different layout on the second quilt top,
 Of course this means that I will have TWO small quilts to quilt....
but they are only 48" x 56", so perhaps I'll get them done,

On another note, I had some more fun with Buttons!
 sewing them onto a rectangle from a cutter quilt,
 sorry this is a bit blurry, but it is now hanging up in my hall way, which was a bit dim for photos,
getting into the Christmas spirit!  I also got baking ingredients this morning, so hopefully I'll make cookies!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Mini Bag with Ribbon Handles

I've started making these little bags to slip things in for gifts-- they are so easy to make, and only take about 10 minutes each.  I think that they are so fast because I'm using felted wool, and so I don't have to worry about finishing the edges or turning them under, plus the felt is thick enough to have enough body for a nice feel to the bag.
So here is the step by step description of how to!:
  gather supplies:
     a rectangle of felted wool, mine is 6" x 13"
     about 45 inches of ribbon for handles
     about 12-1/2" of ribbon for decoration
     optional applique or button to embellish the bag
  place your ribbon about an inch in from one long edge
 lay the ribbon down as a loop, making sure not to get any twists in it
 make sure the handles are equal in size, and then pin down the ribbon
top stitch the ribbon down to the base rectangle, it will look like this on the back
 fold the bag in half and stitch one of the side seams with a 1/4" seam allowance, press it open,
 top-stitch the other ribbon across the place where the raw edges of the handle ribbon meet
 sew the other side seam and press it open
"box" the bottom corners of the bag by stitching a short seam perpendicular to the side seam.  Don't stitch into the ribbon area,

 turn it inside out!
this one shows that I didn't use a second ribbon, but I just sewed a little applique over the raw ends of the handle ribbon.
Now that I've made about 8 of these, I want to try some other sizes, and maybe use a quilted rectangle.... isn't sewing fun?!!!

(update, another good size is: rectangle, 7-1/2" x 17", ribbon handle, 60")

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Ribbon Inspirations

I am pretty excited about ribbon lately. 
Yesterday we got some new ribbons delivered, and we have even more exciting new ribbons coming in early December and early January.
At quilt Market we saw some great samples made with them -- these photos are all from the Renaissance Ribbons booth:
there are some great designer ribbons available that co-ordinate with their fabrics!

I love the green cushion-- fun gathered ribbon flower, the crossed ribbon, the echo quilting!

fun tote bag, uses a lot of Kaffe ribbons,

these cushions are so fun, I like the woven ribbons on the cushion!


easy pincushions

what about hanging in a hoop? you wouldn't need to finish the edges with beading,

placemats, napkin rings, little purses,

journal covers,

more fun stuff

cute bow tie on the christmas cushion
So many great ideas using ribbons!  Which to start with???  (I have some projects in the works!!!)

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Retreat Weekend Show and Tell

On Friday, Saturday and Sunday, we (43 of us) went to Shekinah Retreat Center for an enjoyable time to relax, visit, and sew.  It was a wonderful time, and although I didn't personally get Lots and lots sewn, I did get to see many people and get to know some a bit better.
The photos here are from the Saturday night show and tell,
I was just taking photos from where I was sitting, and they are not great photos, but they do remind me of what people were working on.
there were big projects....
 and small projects:
Sherri's scrappy table center
 modern designs:
Ev's gorgeous colors
Miriam's gorgeous colors
 and more traditional looking designs:
Sandy's Hidden Wells in Christmas fabrics

 hand applique:
Sandy's applique
 fusible applique:
Pam's block
 designs with lots of tricky piecing:

Val's stars
 and quilts from strip piecing:
Patti's quilt
 Hand quilted:

Helen's quilt
 and machine quilted
Helen's again
there were even garments sewn!
So I think among us we hit all the bases.  Thanks everyone for such a good time!

p.s. We are planning another retreat for March 22-24, so if you are interested in coming, just call the shop and someone can tell you more about it.  I'll also try to do a more descriptive post of what it's like soon..

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Block 6, Zig-Zag

Good morning, today we have a Zig-Zag Block for our Saturday Surprise Sampler program, (you can see more here

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Christmas Bow Decorations

Christmas bow decorations for tree
 Many years ago I made some stuffed fabric bows as Christmas tree decorations.  They have continued to be some of my favorites as we decorate the tree each year.  So I decided to make a few more in some current fabric to supplement my stash of them, and maybe some to give away as well!

They are pretty easy to make
You will need:
some Christmas-y fabric
stuffing, like polyester fiberfill,
cord or string for the holders

For each bow, you will need to cut two pieces of fabric:
one rectangle (A) 4" x 4-1/2" for the stuffed part
one rectangle (B) 3" x 9-1/2" for the ribbon part

To make:
Fold the A rectangle in half, right sides together so that you get a fat little rectangle, not a long skinny rectangle.  Sew around the 3 cut edges, leaving an opening on the bottom about 1-1/2" long.  Backstitch to secure the ends of the seams so they don't pull apart when you turn the piece inside out.  Clip the corners of the seams
leave an opening for turning about halfway on the long raw edge side

Fold the B strip in half length wise, and cut the ends at a bit of an angle to make a ribbon like end to it.
Again, sew around the 3 raw edges, leaving an opening on the side, about halfway on the edge.
Clip corners, turn inside out and press flat.

clip the corners
Turn the piece inside out and push the corners out to make them nice and square.
Press and then stuff the piece so that it is a nice little pillow shape.

You can sew  a seam to help make the pleat,
 Fold the B strip around the pillow, folding in little tucks on each side.  I think these are important to make a sophisticated looking bow!  Sew along the bottom edge of the ribbon part to keep it in place around the pillow part.

really squish up the stuffed part so you can sew the ribbon part together on the sewing machine
 Attach a loop for hanging it up.  I just used some simple thread loop, hands ewing it on.  You could get more sophisticated if you like, such as sewing on a little metal ring to the top and then using a wire holder.
fa la la la la    la la la la
By the way, what is this bird?

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