Wednesday, June 26, 2013

A Little This and That...

Today, I'm starting off with a This and That pattern called Nifty Notes. It truly is nifty in that you can put together some of your fabric scraps and make a great little note keeper. The second picture shows the inside where you can insert a paper tablet on the right side and a writing instrument on the left. I think the left side would be great for a gift card too. I'll have to remember these for teacher gifts next year. Also, my daughter and her friends are getting to the age when it's hard to shop for their birthdays so gift cards are becoming more prevalent. The ones pictured are for my daughters but I have some fabric in mind for me for my knitting bag. I like to write down and cross out rows and such while knitting so this would be just right! I think I'll make one for my sewing projects too as you never know when an idea will surface. 

Finished size is 3-3/4x6

I have lots of different collections of fabric including a civil war one. I got a crazy urge to cut some up and make a table topper for my coffee table. This is what I came up with - a brick wall quilt. Just something I did over a weekend for fun. I wasn't too excited about it at first but it's growing on me.

On the table topper I have this book I found recently at a secondhand book store - In Celebration of Quilting 20 Years of My Best by Lynette Jensen. There are some really great, traditional quilts in this book that I have put on my to-do list, including the holiday wreath below.

A little knitting too... this was made with one of those crazy zauberballs using a pattern on ravelry called Citron. One thing I learned the hard way is that you should never start a zauberball in the middle of the ball unless you want a tangled mess! Always start these on the outside. Overall, this is an easy project that you can travel with or knit in front of your favorite tv show.

Remember the lined drawstring bags I've been making from the free tutorial over at In Color Order? Well, I'm making more because they are so fun and addicting. I had these paper pieced tumbler blocks that I made last summer still on my sewing table. I've been saving them for something special or in other words, I just didn't know what to do with them... until I started making the drawstring bags. These will be great for the girls for summer at the pool! There's enough room for some spending money, their pool passes, googles, and a snack. Now I just need to finish Sarah's!

Happy sewing and knitting!

Julie B.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Quilting with Fruits and Vegetables

Like most quilters, I have various fabric collections that grow and grow until I have enough to make a quilt. Some of my collections are red and whites, black and whites, 30's repro, civil war, solids, and music. The one I am working on now really does grow in real life - fruits and vegetables! I am using Judy Hopkin's book 501 Rotary-Cut Quilt Blocks which I just discovered a couple months ago. The book is so great with color illustrations of each block in alphabetical order and several sizes to make each block. I sorted thru my collection of fruits and vegetables and picked out the more realistic-looking ones. Then, I pulled out some solids that would look good with the collection. Here are my first few blocks...
Carrot Block - Split Nine Patch 

Artichoke Block - Boxes

Avocado Block - Aunt Dinah

It's one of the those quilts that is evolving during the quilting process. Usually, I like to have somewhat of a plan but I'm stepping out of my comfort zone and making it up as I go. I kind of like it! It's fun... like one of those mystery quilts that I have yet to try. Have you tried one? If so, which one? I'd love to hear about it!

I work at a fabric and yarn shop that also services sewing machines. We have a great sewing tech guy who has been servicing all brands of sewing machines for over 20 years. This spring he was doing a huge clean up of his shop (which is his house) and found a couple of old Singers. So, look what I brought home! Isn't is cool? And it works! I haven't got around to testing it but he assured me it works. Not sure I'll use it much but it looks so neat on a side table in my bedroom. I think I need to drape a vintage quilt under the sewing needle. 

Happy sewing and quilting!

Julie B.

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