Tuesday, 30 March 2021

Zip it up (and start again)

I’m not sure how describe this month’s sewing – it is a fold out tray that zips up into a box shape that I made for an online challenge of “something with a zip”.


The pattern is based on the free Zola Pen Case, but I shorten it by an inch to make it less like a pencil case. I also omitted the snap on the end of the zip and just sewed the zip to the base to make the handle.


I did try it with a bound zip as per the instructions, but I didn’t like the contrast fabric and zip I initially chose, so I replaced them with a lace zip.


Even though I cursed all the unpicking at the time, I am pleased that I went with the lace zip.

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Sunday, 28 February 2021

Heart Strings Quilt

This month’s sewing was made as an online Valentine challenge and is a smallish (40” square) quilt for Project Linus. 

 

With feline assistance, I gathered my fabrics and starting sewing during the weekend of Valentine’s day.

 

The quilt is made from 16 string-pieced squares, some a single colour and some two-coloured. Squares and HST were made using string piecing on to a paper backing, a technique I’d not tried before. The strings were cut from FQs of Liberty quilting cotton and the cream background is from low volume fabrics that I have been adding to my stash over several months. I didn’t get my calculations quite right when working out what size strings to cut so I had to insert narrow strings to get full coverage.

 

I quilted it with a free motion meander with heart shaped motifs. The pink thread I used for the heart was too good a match for some of the strings and I struggled to see the quilting in places.

 

The backing and binding fabrics were from stash and the binding is machine stitched as I think it is more suitable for a quilt that hopefully will get lots of use and washing.

 

I’m quite pleased to have used some more of my Liberty rather than having it sit unused in my Stash.

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Sunday, 31 January 2021

Little and Large

So, 2021 started as 2020 finished – in lockdown. However, looking on the bright side, I did receive some rather nice sewing items for Christmas, one of which was Tulip Akari glass headed pins. I decided that new pins deserved a new pin cushion so I made a tiny (2 inches from side to side) biscornu pin cushion.


The fabric is part of a tweed jacket I got in a charity shop a couple of years ago with plans to upcycle it into a bag (which has not happened) and it is stuffed with crushed walnut shells which make a very satisfying crunching sensation when I push in a pin. I keep the pin cushion in small turned wood pot that I got a craft fair a while ago which stops the pins from pushing through the cushion and scratching the table.


Another necessary item of sewing this month was an oversized top to wear while working from home as the desk is next to a cold window. I had no furry fleece in my stash, but spotted a fur/fleece throw in the supermarket that was equivalent to 2m of 150 cm wide fabric and better value than buying fabric by the metre. I modified a pattern I had in my stash firstly to fit the fabric and secondly to make the collar larger, and I also added a satiny lining (again from stash) to make it easier to slip over existing layers of clothing.



It definitely serves its purpose, though I do feel as though I am channelling my inner womble when wearing it.

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Thursday, 31 December 2020

2020 - Masks and more

[Edited - originally published 27 January 2021 but moved to December 2020 for archiving.]

I’m rather late posting this (and I will probably move it to December’s archives) but this is what I managed to finish in 2020.


As expected, there were rather a lot of masks, but I was surprised to see that I finished five quilts. There was also a bit of garment sewing brought on by the lack of shopping opportunities due to lockdowns. My tally for 2020 is:

  • 1 crochet blanket
  • 1 bag
  • 1 quilted plant pot holder
  • 2 tunics
  • 3 pairs of cropped trousers
  • 5 quilts
  • ~50 masks

My fabric shopping has had to move online and most purchases have been successful, though one or two fabrics were not as expected and will end up being used for toiles. I did very little hand sewing and my EPP project ground to a halt. 

2020 was definitely an odd year and I do hope that 2021 is not going to be a repeat.

 

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Wednesday, 23 December 2020

Finishes and Festivities

I mentioned last month that I was nearly at the end of a Quilt Along – I’m pleased to say that I managed to finish it in time and it is now quilted and bound. The front is made from Liberty quilting cottons and the backing is Liberty tana lawn that I had in my stash.


 As usual there was lots of feline help at every stage of the making of this quilt.

My other finishes this month have been slightly festive and not necessarily sewing-related. I planted up a pot of winter flowers for one set of neighbours and made a quilted holder for the pot. My non-sewing project was a couple of small Christmas cakes for friends, though I did cheat and buy ready made marzipan and icing for these.



In other news, unless things change in the next week, I have actually managed to have a month without making any face masks!


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Monday, 30 November 2020

Sewing to deadlines

This month’s sewing has been all about a quilt along, with just a few masks thrown in for good measure.


I decided to take part in Coffee Rings Studio’s Everlasting Star quiltalong and it has been quite a shock to the system! I’ve done various block of the month quilt alongs before and often ended up playing catch up on those, so having to make 6-7 blocks a week for this has taken the majority of all my sewing time.

 

We are now into the final week, and “all” I have to do this week is baste the quilt, quilt the quilt and bind the quilt. I wonder if I can book some time off work …

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Friday, 30 October 2020

Cats (and other creatures) on a quilt

After making the Covid quilt for Zoom meetings last month, it was nice to make a quilt for more traditional purposes. This quilt is heading to my great niece who is now about 3 months old. 



There are lots of cats on it, along with many other creatures so hopefully when she is a bit older she will enjoy spotting them all.



I think this is my favourite square in it – cats, sheep, knitting and combinations of all three!



It is backed with fleece and was quilted in straight lines in the sashing. The binding was machine stitched so it would withstand lots of use and washing.



As usual, there was some feline assistance in the making of this quilt.



Just in case you were thinking I had managed a mask free month, I made this one for Halloween.


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