Monday, 27 December 2010

Stacked Coins quilts

Yes, I did indeed get them finished in time for Christmas :) Using this tutorial and these instructions to make them the sizes I wanted, here are Toddler (blue) and Monkey's (pink) new bed quilts.

After binding

On the cot

On the bed

It was a bugger wrestling with the twin size while quilting, my shoulders were aching for two days afterwards. I tried out a few random spirals throughout the quilting too, just for a change. They need some work!

Wrestling match!

Some random spirals

Both quilts are backed with Killington flannel which is so very, very soft and snuggly. And they are both pieced with a strip of coins running across them.

Pieced back

Pieced back

I love these quilts, I have enough coins left to make them a cushion cover each and then their beds are going to look so cute they might even be persuaded to make them in the morning without complaining :)

Dresses for Princess

These dresses may look a little familiar, I tend to use these two patterns a lot. What can I say folks, if it's a cute, well-fitting pattern then it will get made again and again and again :) Pink is Ottobre Autumn 2006 #10 and the lilac is Ottobre Winter 2004 #12. Both of these are for Princess, she chose the fabric combinations and ribbons as well as the dye colours for the second one.



Ottobre 04/04 #12

Ottobre 04/04 #12

Isn't the Italy fabric cute? One of my favourite prints, it's nice to use it for something.

There's another sewalong in the works for the first dress, I think it would be easier to post it as a pdf rather than a blog post as it has a lot of pics. Any thoughts on that idea?

More trousers for Monkey

She chose the fabrics and appliques herself. Nothing to do with me, trying to be a good mother I just bit my tongue and got sewing. Yes, they are indeed as garish as they look but she's four, everything pink is good! Ottobre Winter 2010 again, the fabulous petite fit trousers #12. I'll be posting a sewalong for these as soon as I find time to add words to the pics I took as I was making them :)

Ottobre 06/10 #12

Ottobre 06/10 #12

Ottobre 06/10 #12

Ottobre 06/10 #12

Teacher gifts

We asked the kids' teachers what their favourite colours were then I made them each a snowflake ornament using the embroidery machine. Quick, simple and very appreciated :)

2010 teacher gifts

Xmas pj's

For the last three years I've made the kids matching pyjamas/nighties which they are allowed to unwrap and wear to bed on Christmas Eve. We were having a large family Christmas at my parents home this year so six pairs were required, one each for my kids and also for Niece E and Nephew O. I had five yards of a snowman print flannel left which came up the tiniest bit short for all of the trousers, Toddler had to have the backs of her trousers made from plain flannel with a couple of appliques stitched on. time ran out when making the tops so I settled for making two of them and embroidering some RTW for the others. The embroideries are simple text put together using my machine's built-in alphabets, they say "let it snow let it snow let it snow" which is so very appropriate for us this year!

Xmas pj's - trousers

Xmas pj's - tops

Saturday, 27 November 2010

New favourite trousers!

I love the pattern designers at Ottobre. Whoever came up with #12 from the Winter 2010 issue is my new best friend, this is a trouser pattern for skinny kids and it fits Monkey perfectly. They stay up all on their own with no belt or elastic! A first for us from any pattern company, I made this test pair in a straight 104cm with no alterations and they're just fab, she'll be picking through the stash tomorrow for fabric for another four as she desperately needs long trousers.

Front view, I left off the belt loops as it was a test and she doesn't use them anyway. They're pulled right up here, they do fall down a little when she's been moving around but not enough that she gets builder's bum as happens with shop bought! They come down perhaps half an inch.

06/10 #12 Front

Back view, it is so odd to see her wearing trousers that actually fit around the bottom instead of bagging out everywhere.

06/10 #12 Back

I did make one small change at the front fly, Monkey isn't great with buttons (and I didn't have any zips handy) so the fly closes with five snaps instead. Easy for her, easy for me :)

Snap fly

I just can't say no

Monkey and I were in Hobbycraft on Monday checking out the Airfix models for Boy's birthday next month. Naturally she wandered off down the wrong aisle and when I found her again she was clutching a ball of wool with both hands and started asking "Mammy, mammy, make me a scarf please!" My heart sank, while I can knit it's not something I particularly enjoy. My grandma taught me years ago and she was an arthritic old lady then so, not surprisingly, I myself knit like an arthritic old lady. Slowly. While that's actually a good thing considering I now have arthritis in both hands it's not the point! I Do Not Like Knitting. Monkey smiled, I melted and we came home with this.

Oh yes, conned again!

I got to it, after hours (I kid you not, HOURS) of painstakingly knitting away I realised I'd better try to go faster as Monkey really needed a scarf.

Brr, must knit faster!

It snowed! I managed to get it finished this morning in time to go sledding, it looks pretty much the same but longer and without the knitting needle stuck through it :D The colours are lovely, I like them very much.

Pretty colours

Princess has been eyeing it up so I need to practise.

No. No. No. No.

Monday, 15 November 2010

Quilting update

Work is progressing nicely on the quilts - yes, that was meant to be a plural :) Not content with getting started on my own king size bed quilt I decided this would be a good month to start work on one for Monkey and one for Toddler too. Might as well get them all done at once!

I've so far pieced together the centre of the Round the World quilt that I'm making for me. After much thought I decided that there is no way I'm going to be able to squeeze it all through my machine when it's all pieced so I'm going to quilt as I go, the centre is in four 5x5 block pieces which I will quilt, stitch together, add borders to then quilt the borders, bind and Ta Da, it will be done without having to manhadnle 100" through my teeny tiny machine space. Here it is, all folded up and waiting patiently on me choosing a backing fabric. I am loving the brown with the colours in the Soiree prints and you would too if I took a better picture, sorry!


On to the girls. They are both getting a bed size quilt (in Toddler's case it's only a cot bed so not quite as much work) as part of their Christmas gifts this year and as they share a room I decided to make co-ordinating quilts for them. The Stacked Coins Baby Quilt from Crazy Mom Quilts has been on my ToDo list for a very long time and as I happened to have several charm packs on hand I decided it was the perefct time to try it. The charms are from Moda's Frolic line which I simply adore, I wish I could get a whole bolt of every print. Joining together over 700" of sashing strips to then cut them to length was more than a little tedious, as was chain piecing the bazillion and one coins. It will be worth it in the end though!

Coins Pink sashing

Pink coins

Blue coins

I've used different coloured Kona cotton for the sashing on each so we can tell them apart better - Toddler doesn't quite get the concept of "yours is the smaller one" yet but she can manage "yours is blue" :)

Monday, 25 October 2010

November's project

I think I will only have time for one project next month, it's a biggie! I have been wanting to make a quilt for my bed for a while now and have slowly been getting my supplies together and deciding just what I want to do. After much doodling on graph paper I have finally chosen a layout, bought in the fabrics and am all ready to go. Here is the design:

Next project plan...

Yes, that does say the finished size will be around 100" x 100" - told you it was a biggie :) The inner diamonds ( a take on the Round the World pattern) will be made up of chocolate brown Kona cotton and a Soiree layer cake with the Soiree diamonds grouped more or less by colour. I've chosen a couple of extra prints from stash to go in with them as I need 100 finished units and the layer cake will only give me 88. The first outer border will be white Kona cotton, the second border will be pieced from a Soiree honeybun and the final border will be white Kona cotton again. I think I will piece the binding from a Soiree jelly roll and I should have something in the stash that I can piece together for the backing.

Next project supplies...

I have a feeling I may have bitten off more than I can chew....we'll see!

Raffle quilt

Almost the last post for today, promise :) The kids and I go to karate once a week and our club has a raffle once a year to raise funds for new equipment so this year I made a quilt to gift as one of the prizes. The pattern is from Fast Quilts from Fat Quarters and is the second quilt I've made from this particular book. I'm really pleased with how it came out though I think my fabric choices could have been better for some of the blocks. I need to work on looking at value, not colour :) The fabrics are from the Woodland Bloom collection, designed by Lila Tueller for Moda apart from the white which is Kona cotton.

Tumbling blocks quilt

Tumbling blocks backing

The back uses the largest scale print I had from the collection and I love the binding, it's quite a large scale print which looks great as a binding as all you see are the fab colours, I wish I had yards and yards of it! The binding on this is machine stitched. I much prefer the look of hand stitched binding but I didn't have enough time for that.

I have three favourite blocks...

Tumbling blocks 1 Tumbling blocks 2 Tumbling blocks 3

And as you can see I just stippled in the white areas and left the rest untouched. After a wash and dry it now looks wonderfully scrunched (excuse the foldline! I took it out of its bag for one final photo and didn't smooth it out properly). I hope whoever wins it likes it, it's big enough to use as a cot quilt for a toddler or a lap quilt for an adult. I'm secretly hoping I win it back ;P

Tumbling blocks scrunched up!

Happy birthday Toddler!

Toddler turned two this month and I realised that she still didn't have her own snuggle quilt for movie time. Of course I realised this the day before her birthday didn't I? Not having much time I had to keep the design simple and just went for 6" squares in a stepping stone pattern. The fabrics are all by Amy Schimler for Kaufman (I *love* Amy's designs, I would have a bolt of everything she's ever brought out if I had the cash!) and the backing is a rosebud swirl Minky that has been laying around for a couple of years. It's roughly 36" x 48", great size for Toddler to snuggle under when we all watch a film on a Saturday evening. Boy is particularly pleased about this as she would always pinch his before getting her own :D

Happy birthday Isabelle :)

Quilt back

You would not believe just how much fluff came off of that Minky fabric as soon as the scissors came within an inch of it. I was covered, the table was covered, the floor was covered and my poor ironing board is *still* covered, I'll have to take the cover off of it and wash it a few times to get it all off I think. Have a look!

fluff all over me...

fluff all over the table...

fluff all over the floor....

I have one more of these quilts to make, for Niece E. I am very tempted to find something else to back it with!

Toddler swap loot!!

Not my own sewing this time but still sewing and therefore bloggable :) I received my parcel from the Toddler Swap I took part in on Sewing Mamas and wanted to share it. Everything fits Toddler perfectly and is just lovely, thank you ladies!

Toddler swap loot!

A smocked T from ejegmama and an Insa skirt from nickb. Toddler loves Minnie :)

Toddler swap loot!

An Olivia dress with a ridiculously cute ruffle from mommytomaddyharley.

Toddler swap loot!

Gorgeous soft fleece hoodie from nickb, she wore it to the park today and was toasty warm.

Big thanks to the lady who hosted the swap and I'm really looking forward to the next one, it's so much fun when the return parcel arrives :)

Two winter coats

I've been MIA lately, sorry. Both our laptop and PC need new motherboards so I've been finding it difficult to get online much - the Hubby's phone is OK for reading the odd email but typing a blog post on it? I never realised just how fat my finger tips are! Fortunately my mother has left me her laptop for a few days while she goes down to London to visit my sisters so I am taking full advantage and have been online most of the day :D

The first project I have to show you is a pair of winter coats that I have made for Niece E and Toddler. My Princess and Monkey are pretty much set for coats this year thanks to hand me downs and the kindness of Grandma but Toddler and Niece E needed a little something to see them though to spring. Enter Ottobre (of course!) and pattern #14 from the Winter 2004 issue. The fabric has embroidered cord bonded to faux fur and it has been ageing in my stash for quite a while, I think I bought it from two or three years ago. I had to cut Toddler's sleeves cross grain to squeeze both coats out of two yards but it looks absolutely fine so we'll call it a deliberate design feature ;P

Ottobre 04/2004 #14

I love the tulip shaped pockets. I lined them with quilting cotton as the fashion fabric would have been far too thick. My machine struggled to sew this in places! The hems and inside of the front facing are finished with 1" wide baby blue FOE (fold over elastic) which looks great, I'm glad I had enough left for both coats as it was so much easier to apply than bias biding would have been.

Ottobre 04/2004 #14 - pocket

If you peep underneath that front overlap you will find the zipper. The pattern is designed for buttons and as such the overlap isn't very wide, it just covers the zipper tape and no more. After one abortive attempt at button holes though the zip was definitely the best way to go even though it's not the neatest looking finish.

Ottobre 04/2004 #14 - zipper

Looking at the inside view, you can see that I've simply sewn the zip on along the centre front line on either side. Definitely not neat but very functional and really, who else but me (and now you ;P) knows that it wasn't intended that way?

Ottobre 04/2004 #14 - Inside

And here are a couple of modelled shots courtesy of Toddler herself. It's a little wide on her (Ottobre's fabric was, I think, much thicker than mine so I have more ease than intended) but it leaves lots of room for layers underneath and doesn't restrict her movement at all. The hood makes a great collar when it's down and protects the back of her neck from the wind and when it's up she looks like a little pixie, it is very pointy!


Front modelled