Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Show & Tell Bag

I've been testing bag patterns recently. This one is called the Show & Tell bag.

It's a huge bag with an outer pocket on each side. The pattern calls for using leather on the bottom but I used some of the new cork fabric I recently received in my shop. It worked great for this project!

I actually made this bag a few weeks ago and have been using it to haul of my Sue Spargo BOM stuff around until I can get my Allium bag finished.

While I really like the finished bag, I'm not as thrilled with the pattern. The bag is fairly simple and straight forward to make, but the pattern leaves out quite a few things. For example, at one point the pattern tells you to put two pieces right sides together then goes on to the next step without telling you to sew the seam. I caught this right away and sewed the seam before proceeding, but I think a beginner would get confused and possibly discouraged. 

So I don't know if I will order this pattern to sell in my shop or not. If I do, I'll need to make sure all of my staff are aware of the shortcomings of this pattern so we can warn folks before they buy it.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Allium Bag :: Progress

Well that didn't take very long! I have finished the embroidery on the front of my Allium bag and now I'm ready to put it together.

I love the before and after embroidery on these projects!

There is some velcro that goes inside this bag at the bottom to hold the zipper pouches in place. I've ordered it but at the time of writing this it isn't here. I haven't read through the assembly instructions yet so I don't know how far I can get with the bag assembly before I need to add the velcro. I'm anxious to get it finished so I can start using it!

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Allium Bag :: A Start

I'm starting a new project. I'm making an Allium bag for all of my Sue Spargo threads. Well ... as much of my Sue Spargo thread as I can fit in the bag.

So far I have the front of the bag pieced and the appliques sewn down. I need to add the embroidery stitches before I can complete the bag.

The bag holds three specially designed thread pouches. I have the pouches but didn't get a photo of them yet.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Mother's Day Sewing

I made myself a new purse over the weekend.

This is my Nancy Tote pattern with a few adjustments. The bottom is cork! It's a new product which I ordered months ago but just recently arrived at the shop. I've been anxious to try it out. It is very easy to use! I tested it with the iron. You can iron it but it doesn't seem to do much. I had best success with firmly finger pressing and then stitching the seam allowance down with topstitching. 

I also tried out another new product.

I found these metal "handmade" labels to order for the shop and couldn't resist purchasing a few for myself to use. I think it adds a nice professional touch.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Merrily Gift Bag

Recently I shared with you the Merrily fabric line along with a few small quilts I've made using it. The link will take you to that post. 

In that post I said I was working on some projects that would use the smallest animal prints. I finished the first one, this adorable gift bag.

Next on my list is to get the kit quilt made. You can see the kits along the right hand side in the photo above.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Another Puzzle Quilt

In the process of demoing the quilt at my shop over the weekend, I made up another Puzzle Quilt. The link will take you to the free tutorial.

The gray bias strip print along the right hand side is the binding fabric I have chosen.

Saturday, May 6, 2017

1st Saturday Demo :: Puzzle Quilt

The demo for today in my shop is for this quilt. It finishes at approximately 40" by 50".

Here is what you'll need to make one:

One Frivols Tin of (42) 7" squares or (42) 7" squares of scraps;
1/2 yard of an accent fabric for a few blocks and the inner border;
2/3 yard of outer border fabric.

Cutting: From the accent fabric, cut (1) 3.5" by WOF (Width Of Fabric) strip; subcut this into (6) 3.5" by 5" rectangles. Cut (5) 2" by WOF strips; subcut one of the strips into (18) 2" squares.

From the Frivols squares (7" squares) cut (1) 3.5" by 7" rectangle; subctu into (1) 3.5" by 5" rectangle. Cut (1) 2" by 7" strip; subcut into (3) 2" squares.

From the border fabric, cut (4) 5" by WOF strips.

Sewing: Stack your fabric for the blocks into 48 piles. Each pile should contain (1) 3.5" by 5" rectangle and (3) 2" squares of the same fabric. Note that you will have (6) piles of pieces cut from your accent fabric; the other (42) piles of pieces are cut from the squares.

Pick four piles that look good together. If you are using Frivols this is easy because the fabrics all look good together! Layout your pieces as in the photo below:

Look at the lower right section in the photo above, the large white rectangle with the two small white squares and one blue square above the large white rectangle. Sew the two white squares to either side of the blue square. Press your seams away from the center blue square. Repeat this for the other groups of three small squares.

The photo below shows how the seams need to be pressed.

Sew the three square units to the long side of the appropriate 3.5" by 5" rectangles. 

Press seams toward the 3.5" by 5" rectangle.

Sew these units together in pairs.

Press toward the side with fewer seams. In photo above, the top row seam is pressed toward the left and the bottom row seam is pressed toward the right. Photo below shows the pressing for the bottom row.

Sew these units together to completed the block.

Spinning your center seam will allow for all of the blocks to nest nicely together when assembling to center. See photo below.

The blocks should measure 9.5" by 9.5" at this point and will be 9" by 9" in the finished quilt.

Sew the blocks together in a 3 block by 4 block layout. Sew (2) of the 2" by WOF inner border strips to the sides of the center. Sew the remaining (2) 2" by WOF inner border strips to the top and bottom of the center. Repeat these steps with the outer border strips. Quilt as desired and bind.

Here is a photo of the completed top again.

You could easily resize this block. To have a 12" by 12" finished block you need to cut your squares (3 of them per fabric) at 2.5" and your rectangle needs to be 4.5" by 6.5".

Friday, May 5, 2017


I'm good at starting things! Not always so good at finishing, but ...

The first start is this pattern that I recently got in at the shop.

Here are the two blocks I've made thus far.

I'm having a grand time sorting through my stash of 5" squares for this one. One of the scrap groups at my shop will be starting on this quilt soon as their project.

The second start is this block.

The above block finishes at 12" square and is made from my scrap bin. I've been looking for a pattern to use up my 7" Frivols squares and this one is it! I resized the block so that it will finish at 9" square so that I can cut all the pieces from my 7" squares from my Frivols tins. I don't have a picture of these yet but I will be sharing it with you soon along with the measurements so you can make one too if you want.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Merrily Wall Hangings

More shop samples. These are from some new fabric I received in my shop called Merrily from Moda. It is a Christmas line, but I feel it leans more towards "Winter" than "Christmas".

It's about 27" by 30" and shows off the medium sized animals so nicely!

Here's another ...

This one is a tad smaller than the first one (about 24" by 28") but uses one of the large size animals and a charm pack.

I'm working on some projects that will feature the smallest sized animals. 

In case you are interested, here are the fabrics and kits.

Here are close-ups of the two animal prints.

Above is one of the large animals with a charm pack (5" squares) for scale and below is the small and medium sized animals.

Monday, May 1, 2017

Unusual Garden

I took Wednesday of last week off from the store to do some store work at home. First on my list was getting the borders on this quilt.

This is created using new fabrics from my shop, go figure! The floral fabrics are from a line called Unusual Garden. The other prints are from a companion line called Texture Graphics. This is a pattern I created to feature the fabrics. It's an easy pattern that lets the floral fabrics shine. The finished quilt is a generous twin size.