Archive for October, 2010


Several weeks ago, I found this totally cute fabric at the shop, Quilters Cottage which I frequent down in S.C.  I really don’t like lots of Halloween fabrics, especially for little girls, but this one was sooo cute.  Each and every pumpkin has a tiny, pink-nosed mouse peaking from behind the pumpkin.  They are hard to see in the pictures, mostly you can see their little whiskers.

 I just had to make some outfits for the girls.  I chose to use the Sister Smock pattern from Indygo Junction because it has a generous cut.  The last time I made several dresses, I had to pull in the bodice about 3/4″ .  I decided to not pull in the bodice for either one of the dresses, hoping that the girls might get a few years out of them.  My daughter loves this style of dress because she can pair them with jeans, leggings or skirts when the girls begin to out grow them and they are a little too short for a dress.  I decided to make Caroline (almost 18 months) and Kate (3 years and 3 months)  sizes 2 & 4.  Here are some pictures of each dress. 

If I had more time to work on them I would have change the thread on my machine to match each strap and bodice before top-stitching each, but I was worried that I would not have them completed by Halloween weekend.  Also, I am unhappy with the buttonholes. 

This was my first time trying to create buttonholes on my Bernina 820.  This is one of the better ones, but I really don’t like sloppy buttonholes.  I like a professional look for my clothing.  That is why I use a serger on all my seams.  With buttonholes on the 820, I need more practice –  plus the white thread doesn’t help.  But for a once-a-year dress, my granddaughters are happy and so is their mom.

Someday soon I will get them to do my modeling for me instead of my garden flag stand ; )

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Just another of my fun swaps!  In this Mug Rug Swap, you are to make a small quilted mug rug for your secret partner.  This was another of the really fabulous swaps on flickr.  My secret partner was a Canadian who really didn’t like fussy florals and had a passion for brown.  I interpreted this as someone who prefers earthtones and not large rose prints. 

  Next, I foraged through my stash and remembered some fabric I had ordered with a fussy cut bee in mind.  I didn’t end up using it for the bee, but I remembered it had some brown/earth tones in it. 

Next, I went to my stash of strip scraps and tried to find some not too girly fabrics to match.  It is interesting to me how many times the green of that Neptune fabric coordinates with other fabrics.  These are the scraps I ended up with.  I think they go well.  Next I pulled out some 100% linen and here is the result.

I also had a pattern for a drink cozy from my latest magazine purchase “Quilts and More” fall edition.  I thought I would be clever and add an extra in my package even though it is not a requirement.  So, I started with some brown wool which I had from a huge pile my mother had given to me years ago. 

I also had some of this really cute owl fabric (my secret partner had mentioned birds and trees in her likes of fabric designs), so I cut a couple of small scraps and tried to use some of the same fabrics I used in the mug rug.  I made a copy of the pattern and away I went.  The only problem was that it is a simple pattern and simple project…so I neglected to look at the pattern or the instructions once I had cut my pieces.  After I mailed out my package, I was uploading the pictures to my flickr photostream and realized that I had made the cozy upside down.  In order to use it properly, my partner will have to have her birds hanging by their feet!!!  Oh well, in my small mind this looked right side up…I mean, how many things are wider on the top?!?

Well, good thing it was just an extra!   I guess I had better keep the magazine and instructions handy next time  ; )

Thanks for visiting,

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Well, my husband’s brother and his wife planned a 30th anniversary celebration over Labor Day weekend.  We visited with them a couple of weeks before the event  weekend and so I made my first bunting for them to bring to their Fripp Island anniversary celebration.  I apologize that I have photos of the process and not the final product.  Perhaps I can get a picture sent to me and I will add it so you can see just how cute this turned out!

Managed to get photos of the finished banner, so I am adding it into the post:

At first I was going to make a bunting with solid fabrics and spell out happy 30th anniversary.  But then I realized I would make something that they could only use one time.  So, I went shopping for some beach/nautical fabrics and chose to make a more generic bunting that they could use anytime they went to the beach (the usually go to Fripp Island at least 1x per year) or it could also be used at the lake house or really anywhere.  I found this fabric line called {By the Sea} and  started making my triangles.

I had to work hard to trim the points close and I also made a notch on either side.  I used a fat bamboo knitting needle to help get the point looking good when I turned them inside out.  Then I chose to topstitch each triangle because it will help them to hang better once they are put up.

 I chose to make the bunting reversible, so that if it was hung in a window or archway it would look good on both sides.  I will say that all those triangles became somewhat tedious, but worth it in the end. 

I started with a 6 inch line, found the middle of the line at 3 inches and marked it.  Then I drew a line 8 inches perpendicular from the 3 inch mark.  Then I just connected the ends of the 6 inch line with the bottom of the perpendicular line.  I used a .25 inch seam to sew aroung the sides.  I basically followed the “Festive Flag Banners” article by Sue Ainsley in the book One-Yard Wonders by Rebecca Yaker and Patricia Hoskins.  Some of the fabric had light houses and I sort of fussy cut those pieces.  I also ended up with a few singles, so I chose to use those for the reverse side of the fussy cut light houses. 

For one of the buntings, I made my own bias tape, but it was tedious and not so rewarding.  I went out and purchased some packaged double fold bias tape and it worked fine.  It is not as thick or substantial as the one I made, but certainly much easier. 

Now my daughter wants to know why I didn’t make one for the girl’s birthdays….some people are never happy  ; )
Thanks for visiting,

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I became very addicted to swaps over the spring and summer.  I joined in the “Pincushion Pass”, which was an open swap (you knew who your partner would be) and a secret swap “Scrappy Pincushion Swap”, which turned into 2 swaps.  Once round one was finished, I signed up for round #2.  This is where I found out about stuffing your pincushions with crushed walnut shells.  I had heard about using walnut shells as a stuffing, but didn’t really know where a person was supposed to purchase it until I read in one of the swap discussions that it is commonly sold as reptile bedding.  As it turns out, I found mine sold as bird bedding in my local pet shop.

Here are some pictures:

Pincushion Pass-My partner was <craftymomof1> and she did a fabulous job of making a pincushion for me.

I am including 4 pictures so that you can she how craftymomof1  decorated each side.  The small toadstools at the base are actually pins!  How clever is she?

She lives on the west coast and hinted that she liked my Neptune turtle, so this is what I sent to her.

The middle one is the turtle I sent to craftymomof1.

In the Scrappy Pincushion Swap, My first partner was ruthiequilts and I had made several pincushions to see which one I should send.  In the end I sent the paper-pieced honeybee that I made with mostly Joel Dewberry scraps and a “natural”  looking linen.  I chose this one to send to her because it had made the front page of the Explore on flickr and I therefore thought it quite famous ; )

My second partner for the Scrappy Pincushion Swap was a college girl Loraclare who liked bright fabrics and didn’t even own a pincushion!  Well, I ended up sending her 2.  One that was larger and in happy colors and then a second one that was smaller.  The first one is made from a repurposed cashmere sweater and some Verna scraps.  The second is from wool fabric and a red & aqua bee block which was one of my experiments.  Here they are:

This was my first set of pins which I made from some doll making needles  (much larger than normal sewing needles) and some beads I took off of some home dec beaded trim.  Here is a picture I took outside.  You can see some of the beading on the pear a little better.

And my little mouse.

 I also made several extra pincushions which I gave away as additional gifts to some of the swap mamas (women in charge of organizing the swaps).  Here are a few pictures.


Thanks for visiting,

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I have been really busy with the start of school and the many swaps I have joined.  I am going to show you each of the swaps separately.  This first one is set up on flickr.com and you are given a secret partner.  My partner wanted a sewing machine cover.  She sent the dimensions to the coordinator (swap mama) and mentioned that she liked linen, Joel Dewberry fabrics and that her sewing room was blue & green.  Sounded like another Modern Meadow to me! 

Well, here are some pics.

Here is the cover sitting on top of my antique treadle machine.  In the next picture, you will be able to see that it is sitting on my featherweight case, which is close to the measurements given to me by my partner.

The next few pictures will show the quilting I used.

I also made a matching pincushion to go along with the cover.  It is made with the same Joel Dewberry fabric and a repurposed cashmere sweater.  I spruced it up with some beading.

I also made my first set of large pins with some additional beading and some super glue.

Thanks for visiting,

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