Saturday, June 21, 2014

June Block Talk

Patchique' Blocks and a Mini Nested Churn Dash

It's been awhile since I had time to make a few Patchique' Blocks, with Amanda, The Patchsmith, but I was able to get two blocks done this week.

Making blocks along- side Amanda, The Patchsmith
Japanese Taupe Quilts book   by Susan Briscoe
The first block:  #21    Kasuri juji  (which means Kasuri crosses)

Block #21  from Japanese Taupe Quilts   page 46 in book

This block has 49 pieces... but went pretty smoothly .(It still amazes me when it turns out ok !)

#21  Kasuri crosses                          by Susie's Sunroom

The applique' block:   #80    Neji nioi ume (Matching twisted plum blossom)
Block #80    page 81 from   book

I decided to make each petal a different fabric, like Amanda did on her block.

Block #80  Matching twisted plum blossom    by Susie's Sunroom

I was pleased to see that it also featured a yoyo center.

Blocks #21 and #80                 by Susie's Sunroom

Completed blocks..... 30 of them now!
I am so happy to be learning so many piecing and sewing skills by doing these blocks with Amanda!  

I also made a rather sad attempt to make my first mini Nested Churn Dash block. I am going to totally blame Amanda,  The Patchsmith , because she made this tiny block look SO EASY!! (see her blog here

  As you  see below ,my  mini Churn Dash turned out a bit wonky,  and thus , is officially  a mini Churn Crash !     
I need to sew slower,  use zero steam, and  pick different fabrics (no stripes).  (I will not be submitting this to the Nested Churn Dash Sew Along, I guess!)

My wonky 2 inch  center for a Nested Churn Dash block...
  (notice I did not put my name on it?!)
Wanna see how cute Amanda's "mini's" are?  

The Patchsmith's   Nested Churn Dash blocks .. they are  growing
and so darn cute!!

Well, after seeing Amanda's again,   I just may be trying this Nested Churn Dash block again!

I'm off to my sewing room!

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Summer Gypsy Pillow

The Summer Gypsy Pillow

I have always loved seeing  projects using hexagons, but had only made 2 small projects using these little fabric shapes.

My first hexagon project... 3 hexies appliqued per side on an eyeglasses case

My second project...  the  Hexagon Eye Glasses Case:  design by Liesl Made blog
blogged here

I had a lot of fun making these hexagons, so I knew that I wanted to make a bigger project, someday,  that used hexagons. 

While looking for patterns and ideas,  I ran across this pattern.
It is called, "Summer Gypsy Pillow"      designed by   Helen   of Bustle and Sew blog , out of the  August 2013  Bustle and Sew magazine
Summer Gypsy Pillow is in this Aug 2013 issue
Helen writes that she was inspired by the English narrow boats, in which gypsy families lived and worked to transport goods.   She says this  about her pillow :    "  Combine bright colours and a cheerful scarlet geranium - pom-poms and hexagons to evoke something of the feeling of the old English narrow boats travelling up and down the waterways of middle England. "

A few days later,  I got this beautiful photo in an email:

Inside a narrow boat...  .photo taken by Amanda, The Patchsmith
My dear friend, Amanda , The Patchsmith, sent me this picture from a trip she made this spring, to the Cotswolds,in the UK.   I recognized the "narrow boat"  and  I took it to be a "sign" that I had to make that  cushion cover!

Some more  inspiration!      photo by Susie's Sunroom

And so  here is my version of the Summer Gypsy Pillow~

Summer Gypsy Pillow                       Susie's Sunroom

Summer Gypsy Cushion Cover         design by   Helen   Bustle and Sew magazine  Aug 2013
Fabrics:        Vintage Summer    by Little Yellow Bicycle

                Moda Essential Dots  Aqua      for backing
                Green felt-    leaves
                Ginghams-    from my stash  
Hexagons:    41 -   with  1 1/2 inch sides
Buttons:  61   from my stash 
(I left out the poms-poms.)

The pot and leaves-   fusible applique'  and machine stitching

After the leaves and the pot were ironed and sewn onto  the fabric, it was time to add the little  Geranium flowers.  I decided to try drawing them in , using my new Frixion gel pen (by Pilot).   I LOVE IT!!  My marks were simple to fill in with the satin stitch and embroidery thread.  How did I remove the markings?  Iron them off!  That easy ! 

 (Note:  I tested my fabric first!!  )  
(Confession:   I drew the whole design on at first.  When I ironed my leaves on... DUH....  the flowerettes disappeared by the heat!  I simply drew them on again and began to hand sew the little red flowerettes.)

The geranium flowers were hand embroidered ....  satin stitch.  The stems were added  by machine
Next,  I placed each hexagon around the central  potted Geranium plant and pinned them in place

Zigzag stitching around each hexi

In the directions, Helen hand embroidered the Feather Stitch  around each edge of the hexagons.  
I experimented, and found a stitch on my Viking Topz 30 that was similar to the Feather Stitch, and went with that!  I used a light aqua Rayon embroidery thread for this decorative stitching.  It blended nicely, and  covered up any gaps  slight imperfections between the hexies.

The cushion cover layout before feather stitching the hexies

After all of the hexagon sides were sewn, it was time to add the buttons!  

I sewed on 61 little buttons!!  (At this point, I split this task up into 3 days!)  They added such a nice sparkle to the cushion top.

The pillow cover is 16 inches square... I put an 18 in pillow insert inside of it
The back..... I made the Covered Zipper  , from the fabulous 
 Amy Made That! free tutorial

I just love this little bluebird with the flowers!!  from Vintage Summer fabric (by Little Yellow Bicycle)

I couldn't resist making one of the hexies in patchwork!!

I love my Summer Gypsy makes me happy to look at it each morning!  I feel like I have a little touch of England in my home...

I'm off to my sewing room!
I am linking up at: 
         Can I Get A Whoop Whoop!  @ Confessions of a Fabric Addict  and   
           ASWCT Linky Party @ And Sew We Craft        and
          Inspire Us Thursdays @   The Inspired Wren   and
             Fabric Frenzy Friday   @ Fort Worth Fabric Studio       and
            Sew Darn Crafty @  Sew Many Ways                and
             Sew Jo Saturday @  My Go- Go Life

Sunday, June 8, 2014

A Knitting Bag

Making a Knitting Bag

It's no secret that I love to make all kinds of bags and totes.  Here's a few of the bags I have made and blogged about....

Slouchy Sling,  Little Bow Pleat bag,  The Convertible Bag,  Two Zip Hipster, The Anita Vacation Tote, The Bookbag Backpack

My friend, Kathy, asked me to make a knitting bag for her daughter-in-law. Well, of  course I said I would love to do it!

Tall Knitting Bag       design by Susie's Sunroom

Tall Knitting Bag~            design by Susie's Sunroom
Dimensions:   16 inches tall x 13 1/2 inches wide x 5 1/2 inches deep
Features:   Magnetic Snap closure
                Pockets-   Two slip pockets inside  , one on each side

Inside-  slip pockets on each side of lining (one with velcro, for keeping scissors, etc)

I wanted this to be a tall bag that would easily hold her long knitting needles, as well as a project.

The dragonfly fabric turned out to be so pretty

Lots of room for keeping her work in the bag, too

What's that project that you can see in the bag?

It's is an  afghan that I knit for my friend, Joe.  I hope it will keep him warm when he isn't feeling well.

I'm off to my sewing room!

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Participating in a Mug Rug Swap

I was in Quilting Gallery's Springtime Flowers Mug Rug Swap

This past month, I had so much fun being in a mug rug swap, called Springtime Flowers!
Michele, at Quilting Gallery, organized the swap and  coordinated the partners,  and Amanda, The Patchsmith designed the two mug rug patterns that we made for our partners!

I was lucky enough to be matched  to one partner,  Judee, and then I made friends  with Debbie, on the Quilting Gallery Swaps  facebook page.  Debbie and I decided to have a little swap between ourselves, too!   How lucky am I !!

Here is the two mug  rug set that  Amanda, The Patchsmith, designed for the swap:

Springtime Flowers mug rugs      made and designed by The Patchsmith

Aren't they cute and happy??!!  If you love these,  you can see ALL of The Patchsmith's patterns here! (They are so affordable and fun!)  There is bound to be one for any occasion that you could want!!

So, here are the mug rugs that I made for Judee:

My mug rugs for Judee

I loved using some green  batik strips for the growing flowers' leaves,  and some measuring tape fabric for the flowers in the pot!  I added buttons for the center of those flowers.

I also made a little matching basket
Amanda's patterns are so adaptable... I put the applique' butterflies on one side of a mini basket.  And on the other side....

... some  flowers!

I put together a little bundle of goodies, and sent it off to Judee.

Judee's bundle

Now to show you the two Springtime Flowers mug rugs that I made for Debbie~

I added some 3-D yoyos for the center of the flowers in the basket.  And made the butterfly with the measuring tape fabric in the second mug rug.

...the  measuring tape fabric butterfly and some  bright colors!!

See the little  yoyos for the centers....

I made a key fob and a mini boxy pouch for Debbie, in some sewing fabric

It's just big enough for a chapstick and some money... with the lobster clasp

Here's the bunch of goodies that I sent off to Debbie....

And then, the mailman delivered  a package with these delightful handmade treasures, made by Debbie ....

Thank you so much, Debbie, for your mug rugs, the gorgeous bracelet and beautiful scarf!   
And yes, in case you were wondering,  Debbie made these mug rugs a little oversized!  I love this Benartex fabric and her  applique' variations !

This swap made my Spring season  simply delightful!

I'm off to my sewing room!