Projects · sewing

Quarantine and Me: Week 6

Well, I made it through another week! The best part of my week is that I joined a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program… sort of. One of the Brew houses near me has organized a CSA to help support all the farmers who would normally be setting up stalls at the local Farmers markets.

I used the raspberries in the box to make a batch of jam this morning. I added it to the frozen blueberries I had, with the juice of one lemon! I can’t wait to dig in tomorrow morning! I love toast and jam like nobody’s business!

Before the lockdown I had plans to be in Tarpon Springs, FL this week. In preparation for that trip I was busy the first few month of the year sewing my vacation outfits. I actually tried to do it in a mindful way, starting with going through my closet and deciding what I needed! I browsed Pinterest for ideas on outfits I liked, went through my patterns that matched those items, came up with a color scheme so that I could mix/match easily, and then I fabric shopped! I used Trello to set up my projects, patterns, and fabrics, so that while I was shopping I knew exactly how much fabric to get – and not over/under guessing.

I don’t know if I was surprised or not… but I realized when I went through closet that I had like 3 t-shirts (other than workout t-shirts) and all of them I use as pajama tops. So first thing on my list: T-Shirts.

This was my first one! I freaking love the fabric – I picked it up at the Sewing Expo I went to in February. Even though it wasn’t exactly in my color scheme, it’s not completely out of it. (By the way – the pattern for all the t-shirts is KwikSew 2900 which is out of print).

This shirt I tried to make ‘flutter’ sleeves … What I got was not exactly what I was imagining, but it will do. I found the fabric at the “Vogue Fabrics” booth at the sewing expo. It was like $5 a yard so I bought like 5 yards. You’ll be seeing more of this fabric in the coming weeks.

Oh, I should mention that I made these pants using fabric that I picked up at JoAnn’s about 6 months ago. The pattern is Simplicity 1283 and these are the second pair I’ve made using the pattern. I learned a couple of things this time around: 1. I lost weight since the last time I used the pattern because these things are pretty big, and 2. I definitely need to figure out the wrinkling issue I have at the back of my legs.

The third T-shirt I made was a solid gray shirt made out of the softest bamboo blend from Sew, Sew English! Holy smokes I love this fabric. Unfortunately I don’t have a picture of it with nothing over it… so you also get to see my 2nd favorite item: a duster I made using SeamWorks Oslo Sweater pattern.

This is about the 3rd sweater I’ve made using this pattern, this time I lengthened it quite a bit… like by 12″. I wanted something that I could wear on cooler nights on the beach… or over a swimsuit. I found the fabric at Pacific Fabrics about 2 years ago… it was one of those ‘I love this fabric, but I don’t know what to make with it, so I’ll get 3 yards of it”. I barely had enough for this duster, I ended up piecing the collar piece from four sections instead of two. I still love it!

quilting · sewing

Quarantine and me: Week 4

What a week! It started off with me registering for Grad school. I am attending Washington University in St. Louis, Masters in Law program. All classes are online which meant that I needed to get logged into their system and store all my IDs and passwords – which I did. The next day, my computer crashed! It won’t even turn on!

I can’t say I am surprised. The computer is about 12 – 15 years old, and I have been waiting for it to crash… but a week before school starts?? Needless to say timing is not ideal and with the “Stay home, stay safe” order in effect it’s not like I can go out and pick up another computer! So I took a deep breath and ordered one from Apple.com and I’m keeping my fingers crossed that it arrives before classes start on Monday.

On the sewing front I finished a total of 100 masks; 50 were donated to the Seattle Indian Health Board, and 50 were given to my brother and his co-workers. When my brother came over to pick them up it was sad not to be able to give him a hug. But I had to laugh that we exchanged homemade chocolate chip cookies – unplanned! Yep, we’re related!

Once I was done with the masks I finished this beauty! Which was mostly long arm quilting and binding it.

Quilt, pillow shams, throw pillow front, and smaller panel (pillow).

I saw this at the Quilting and Sewing Expo at the end of February… before shit hit the fan on this pandemic! I saw it hanging there and stood for about 5 minutes just admiring it! It was so pretty and unlike any quilt I’ve seen before…… so of course I bought the kit!

Image of full quilt! Love at first sight

It was designed by Sarah Watts for Ruby Star Society, and the kit includes a queen sized panel, two pillow shams, 18” throw pillow, an small panel to make a baby quilt (or wall hanging), and a extra panel which I made into a small pillow! The fabric is a beautiful sateen that is super soft and makes all the colors bright and beautiful

Wall hanging or baby quilt

I bought enough backing fabric to complete all the projects, including the binding, but after I finished quilting it I decided that the pink binding looked better, and added an extra pop of color.

Back of wall hanging

If I were 13 I would put this on my bed and never take it off….. but as it is, now that I have admired it, pet it, and added my ‘artistic’ touch to it, I will list it on my Etsy site. My hope is that someone who admires unicorns, owls, flowers, full moons and pretty birds will find it and claim it as their own.

Stay safe my friends,

Projects · sewing

Sewtropolis Signature Quilt

2019 was all about finishing up some of my many UFOs (UnFinished Objects)… including the Sewtropolis Signature Quilt.  I started this quilt about a year before I closed my store… not knowing at the time that I would be closing.   It was intended to hang in the studio portion and I thought it would be a fun way to have my customers assist in a quilt.  There are 100 signatures most from the kids who took my summer sewing camps, but also from my adult students, employees and customers. img_7006.jpeg

I managed to put the top together and that’s about the time I realized I needed to close my store…  and this project and so many others went into the UFO basket for the time being.

So here it is six years and a cross-county move later and I’m finally tackling that that UFO basket.   All I had to do to finish this quilt was to quilt and bind it so I waited till I had a few tops to quilt before reserving time on the long-arm.  After quilting the first two with no issue, I loaded this one and started doing my thing… and about 3/4 of the way into it I realized that the backing had somehow creased and was getting worse as I went along.

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I can “live” with a lot of mistakes, but this crease was not one of them.  I took it off the machine, brought it home and took out most of what I had done.  To be honest with you – I had heard of people doing this and thought to myself NO WAY would I ever do this  – I don’t mind a mistake or a few, I think they give a quilt character – but this crease was in a league of its own!

Once I was done unstitching, I re-quilted it on my home machine, putting a heart in each of the blocks, and a wavy pattern on the boarder – which is kind of a metaphor for my business:  I loved my customers, but it was definitely a crazy ride!!!

Overall I’m really happy with how this quilt turned out – I loved seeing the signatures of the gals that worked for me (miss you ladies), the signatures of the camp kids – some who were seriously SO MUCH FUN, and I even teared up when I saw Skilo’s block.. God, I miss that dog!!!

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Eventually I will pick off all the stray threads, but for now they are a reminder of the difficulty of my owning my own business and of finishing this quilt.

Happy Sewing

 

Projects

Sewing a Bra – Take 2

I did it!  I made a wearable bra!  image

It might look just like the bra I made before, but this one fits!  I used the same fabric for the main part, but a different fabric for the lining.

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And I used the lining fabric from the first bra for the back pieces on this second bra.  Much better use for that fabric. I have way more stretch, which allows this bra to actually fit!

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Lessons learned with this bra:  1.  I should use different fabric for the main piece.  The fabric that I used is a little stiff.  Definitely not made for bras.  2.  The wires need to be larger.  I ended up ordering wires that were not the correct size or shape so I used the wires out of an old bra.  Even those were a little short and moves around a bit in the casing.  Not too much, but I’d rather they not move at all.  3.  I definitely like the way this bra ‘perks’ up my silhouette – I’ve worn it all week just because it feels so much nicer to have everyone in their place!

Best part:  it was a quick sew!  I made this one in about 2 hours!  Not bad, huh?  I’ll definitely be making more!

 

 

Projects

Rainy Day Project: Number 1

I may have mentioned that when I left Minnesota I sold or gave away about 95% of my stuff…. including all my furniture!  The only thing I decided to keep was my bed frame which is a work of art – literally.  But, more on that later.

I love my apartment, the location was a huge seller for me (walkable neighborhood), next were the amenities (gym, roof top deck, lounge area both upstairs and downstairs), my balcony view of downtown is awesome and it’s a ‘green’ building which means no more $300 winter gas bills!  However, the one thing I don’t really care for – is all the dark brown in my apartment!   Brown bamboo floor in the kitchen, brown carpet in the living room and bedroom, dark brown cupboards – it’s too much brown.

After I moved in I searched Craig’s List and found a nice red couch – which I think adds a nice pop of color in this mist of brown.  But the couch needed pillows so over this past rainy weekend I sewed up these cute pillows:

 

Pillows

I cut up some of my blue scraps into 2.5″ squares and sewed them all together to make these 20″ pillows!  I don’t have a picture of the back, but the fabric is a decor weight blue fabric that I had picked up a few years ago and never used.

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Each pillow is an envelope style pillow since I didn’t have 2 zippers that were long enough…. (and I put myself on a strict “No More Stuff” diet until I use up ‘most’ of what I have).  I backed the quilted size with batting and scraps from a vintage sheet (which was used in a “finish it or donate it” project)

I really like the way these pillows add more pop to my apartment.  At this point I’m still trying to decide how to decorate my place, but given my love for the color aqua I know these pillows will go with whatever I decide.  By the way, the photos don’t do my couch justice… it’s more orange/red – less brown/red.

Happy Sewing