Tuesday, November 29, 2016

A little more FMQ

I love the understated look of Superior Threads' So fine thread for busier quilts.  There's just enough substance there to make the quilting do its job, but not so much that the quilt is overwhelmed.  


This isn't a super involved post--I just wanted to share a quilt that some of the ladies in the San Antonio Modern Quilt Guild put together for our past president who moved out of state.  This quilt was designed by Emily Robbins using some of the modern quilt block guides put out by Love Patchwork and Quilting this year.  Cotton + Steel prints were used in combination with various shades of grey.  It's pretty difficult to see the quilting, but the real star is the quilt design and the fabrics.  

This was the finished quilt prior to the binding being put on.  Love the design, and I think Emily did a great job!

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Sewing for BABY part 2 with Anna Maria Horner fabrics

So there are really only 2 more items I wanted to talk about on this topic, then I promise, I will move on from the baby talk!  

Find the fabric for this projects HERE and the pattern for the Belle Baby Bag HERE
Diaper bags.  Are. Outrageously. Expensive.  If you can sew, there is no excuse for buying a diaper bag (in my opinion).  I spent weeks looking for the perfect diaper bag pattern, and low and behold...Alicia from Swoon Patterns is miraculously pregnant at the same time that I am!!!  Which means she released a diaper bag pattern in the nick of time for me!!!  I mean, not really for me.  More for her, I'm sure.  But I'll take it!  
My pile of Belle Baby Bag pieces cut and ready to go!
So I adore the "Passage" in Pomegranate from AMH's Mod Corsage collection.  Such vibrant colors.  Seriously, pictures really don't do the print justice.  I didn't want to pair the fabrics with a solid, so I went with some Michael Miller's Painter's Canvas in a blue-grey color.  I feel like it really gave a little added texture and made the bag really POP.  



This is the shoulder strap for the bag--using Passage in pomegranate.  You can't find a store bought diaper bag in fabrics this gorgeous.  Won't happen.  


And then this is the nearly finished bag (I was waiting for the strap hardware to come in).  The pattern is very well written (thank you Alicia!), and I couldn't be more happy with the fabric (thank you Anna Maria!!!).  I'm not going to lie...I started carrying it as my purse as soon as I got the rest of the hardware in.  It's going to be a great diaper bag--there are pockets everywhere, and there are even stroller clips (not shown in picture) that attach to the handle of the stroller.  So there's the diaper bag.  

The last thing I'm going to gush about for the time being is the wall hanging I made for Gemma's room.  If you haven't heard of Vanessa at Fabric Confetti, run--don't walk--to her website.  Her embroidery-applique designs are awesome!  I purchased the Elemenopea embroidery design package (it also comes with SVG files to load into your cutter).  I was originally going to hand embroider "Gemma" onto a big wall hanging, but...ain't nobody got time for that!  Find the embroidery files to purchase HERE on the Fabric Confetti website.
Elemenopea Embroidery package-picture from the Fabric Confetti website

So this comes in two different sizes (I swear--I didn't get paid anything to promote either of these products.  I just love them.  I purchased them both myself and didn't ask for any kind of payment from any designer mentioned in this post.)  I bought the larger size.  And yes, it is a bit pricey.  But...so worth it.  



I embroidered/appliqued each letter in "Gemma" separately and cut them out so I could set them at wonky angles on the wall hanging.  Note the reappearance of "Passage" in pomegranate!  The solid fabric on the bottom portion of the letters and also seen in the border of the wall hanging is a shot cotton by Studio E.  The prints in the top portion of the letters are all various prints from Mod Corsage.  




So this is the nearly finished project--loaded onto the longarm and being quilted.  So these are just a few of the things I've made for the nursery, and I'm happy with the few items I did make...even though my original plan was to basically stress myself out to the point of no return by making crib sheets, changing pad covers, lots of baby clothes, etc.  Nope.  Didn't happen.  :)  

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Sewing for BABY with Anna Maria Horner fabrics

As I said in my post a few weeks ago...we have a little girl on the way (I'm typing this in October, so I'm half way hoping she's already been born by the time this goes live!).  My husband and I come from a long line of handmade people...my father in law made Gemma's crib and dresser, my mother in law hand painted baby blocks for her and even wove some handles on a wooden basket to keep the blocks in.  So I wanted some other handmade items in the nursery too!

When I first found out I was pregnant, I had all these grand illusions of what I wanted the nursery to look like.  I was dreaming of a little girl.  We found out that was the case, and I knew immediately I didn't want a sickening pepto pink bedroom for her.  

Pinterest was my BFF and I was pinning tons of color schemes and baby patterns.  I decided to make a short list of things I knew I would have time to make prior to her arrival and planned them out.  I started out with Alison Glass fabrics because I LOVE the saturated colors.  But I couldn't pick a color scheme.  So I moved on to AMH and fell in love with the Mod Corsage line and Fibs and Fables.   I love how complex the colors are in Anna Maria's lines.  The color schemes are very sophisticated, but they all manage to work with her other lines.  So I'm just going to do a quick run through of the items I've made so far for sweet baby girl's room.  


Handmade burp cloths from cloth diapers and AMH Mod Corsage
 So this style isn't typical of the burp cloths I used to make and sell in my Etsy shop, but I think these will be much more absorbent.  We shall see!!!  At the very least, they'll be beautiful until they are snotted on and spit up on :)  Get the tutorial HERE (and better yet, this tutorial is labeled for beginner sewing!


Hour Baskets in Mod Corsage for baby organization
And have you seen how expensive simple little organizing baskets are???  Enter the hour baskets by kelbysews.  These literally took me 30 minutes from start to finish, and they hold the burp cloths like a champ.  I think I made 6 of these, and I love them all!  Get the pattern HERE


Tummy time mat made with Mod Corsage and Fibs and Fables AND batting scraps
And this ethereal print from Mod corsage with the bouquets...to die for.  I wasn't sure what I was going to use this fabric for, but I knew I wanted it showcased.  And I loved this dressmaker print from the AMH Fibs and Fables line.  So I made a simple tummy time mat.  Another great thing about making this was that I used up a TON of batting scraps that I didn't have any plan for.  I quilted this mat pretty heavily, so I stacked the batting scraps 3 layers deep.  This is the cushiest thing you could ever lay a baby on.  And I love that I put those smaller batting scraps to good use.  I squared it up after quilting, rounded the corners to give it a little more style, and bound it.  It's small enough that I can roll it up and take to grandma's house or wherever but big enough that I don't have to worry about other people's dirty floors :)  
There's no pattern for this to link to, but it's basically just a whole cloth quilt with tons of batting scraps layered in between the two pieces of fabric--enough to make 3 layers thick with batting.  Quilt as desired.  Trim/square up into whatever shape you desire.  I rounded the corners because I didn't want them square, and then I slapped some binding on that sucker.  I did machine bind--in the event that this got pooped on or spit up on a ton and needed to be laundered a lot--so if you love hand binding as much as I do, you may want to rethink that!

I'm going to make this a two part post to talk a little more in depth about the other items (so I can credit other people's designs).  Continued to next week--when I will hopefully have this baby out of my body if I don't already!!!






Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Hot Pad Hostess Gift! Sewing for a hostess...


So I got to team up with Janome to offer a free tutorial for a quick and cute hostess gift!  If you aren't the main cook in charge of Thanksgiving, but a guest at someone else's table--you don't want to show up empty handed!  Whip up one of these cute hot pads with a little recipe card and a cooking utensil and you'll be sure to be invited back!  Get the free pattern at the AQS Blog !  And also--Happy Thanksgiving!!!


Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Quilty friends are the best

I may not have come right out and said this yet, but as I type this, I am 37 weeks pregnant with our first child.  I'm kind of a private person when it comes to this kind of stuff and social media, so there haven't been any baby bump pictures or ultrasound photographs or "facebook official" posts.   


However...I have to talk about my "tribe".  The group of people I didn't even know I needed until I found them.  I also have my church family to lean on and love (thank God for that!), but there is something to be said for your sewing friends that other groups don't relate to.  

I'm a member of the San Antonio Modern Quilt Guild, and have been for a little over 2 years.  From the first meeting I attended, I looked around the room, and I could feel something different about the group.  It was mostly (I think ALL, then) women.  They were talking about things they made with their own hands, and they were supporting and encouraging each other.  There was laughter and gossip and friendship.  And they were all very different in their own way.  

Sewing can be a very isolating hobby if you don't have a tribe.  And I didn't know what I was missing out on until I went to that first meeting.  I immediately joined and can't believe the friendships I've made in that short period of time.  There has been laughter, tears, good times, and bad.  And sometimes there wasn't any sewing going on during this.  My point here is that sewing/quilting friends are the BEST.  They get it.  You can be talking about your dog dying one minute and the new quilting technique the next, and they don't bat an eye.  

I feel like I got a little derailed there, so let me get back to my point.  Our MQG has a tradition that someone will head up making a baby quilt for expecting moms in the guild.  So several of the people in the guild got together and put this amazing quilt together.  I love everything about it, and it couldn't be more perfect.  They had even finished piecing it back in August.  Which is the month our guild had booked Karlee Porter to come do a graffiti quilting workshop for us.  Somewhere in all of this, they were discussing the baby quilt in front of Karlee and discussing who would quilt it.  (I have to say here that Karlee is hands down the most authentic Sewlebrity I've even met.  She is real and such a great person to be around.  And AMAZINGLY talented.)

And Karlee volunteered to take it home and quilt it.  NUTS.  Not only did she take it home and quilt it, she couched my baby's name in the center of the quilt with metallic yarn.  This post is more for me than anyone else.  I want to always remember how special I felt when i received this.  Emily presented it to me at our October guild meeting, and I had no idea that it was finished.  I wasn't expecting it, and lately, I have been nothing but a bucket of raw emotions.  So they told me how they put it together, the amazingly special people that planned it, gave fabric for it, gave their time for it, and arranged for Karlee to help as well.  And I lost my shit.   (Pardon the french.  I don't cuss on the blog, but there it is.)  I cried so hard that I nearly couldn't recover to do the rest of the meeting (I'm currently interim President).  Ugly tears were seen by all, and I didn't even care.  Because this group is my tribe.  And wouldn't you know, I'm crying again while I'm typing this.  Seriously, I can't wait for these pregnancy hormones to be gone!  

Anyway. I'm totally overwhelmed at the thought of being a new mom and have no clue what to do once Gemma gets here, but I know that she will be SO loved.  And already is if this group is any indication.